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National Police Misconduct Reporting Project

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 09-18-12

Here are the 9 reports of police misconduct tracked for Tuesday, September 18, 2012

  • West Point, Utah: A high-speed chase that reached speeds of over 100 mph ended with a rollover crash. The chase began after an off-duty officer witnessed a store alarm going off when a man ran out. He appeared to be taking an electronic appliance.
  • Worcester, Massachusetts: Police have indefinitely suspended without pay a state trooper who was indicted on sexual assault charges. He was indicted on three counts of indecent assault and battery and two counts of open and gross lewdness involving an 18-year-old girl.
  • Burlington, Vermont:  A former state trooper who allegedly stole taxpayer money in an overtime scam is now accused of writing hundreds of fake traffic tickets.
  • Berwick, Pennsylvania: An officer was arrested on charges that he stole evidence to support his drug habit. He allegedly stole more than 800 packets of heroin from police at one time. Police are investigating to see if it was an isolated incident.
  • Memphis, Tennessee: An officer was charged in a complaint alleging the transportation of individuals in interstate commerce for the purpose of prostitution. The incident happened while the officer was on-duty and using his patrol car. “Human sex trafficking is a horrific crime that has a devastating impact on its victims and the community,” said U.S. Attorney Edward L. Stanton III. “What makes this case worse is that the alleged perpetrator is a law enforcement official who was sworn to protect and serve. Those who betray the public trust insult the integrity and honor of all law enforcement officials who risk their lives upholding the law.”
  • Brunswick County, North Carolina: A deputy is facing charges after a crash that killed a motorcyclist. He is charged with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle and failure to yield.
  • Madison, Wisconsin: An officer who worked in a school was suspended without pay for eight days and reassigned for violating department policies.
  • Tulsa, Oklahoma: An officer was suspended again after accusations of sexual misconduct while on duty came up.
  • Milton, Delaware: A lawsuit has been filed against the City of Lewes and their police department. It claims the police unnecessarily used a taser to shock a man while he was handcuffed and shackled. The man says that he suffered permanent injuries from the arrest. The defense attorney for the city says that the man was intoxicated and he resisted efforts to administer first aid. He also said that there is no evidence of wrongdoing by his clients.


National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 09-15-12 to 09-17-12

Here are the 11 reports of police misconduct tracked for Saturday, September 15 to  Monday, September 17, 2012:

  • Everett, Washington: Officers tased a mentally ill man and then put him in an isolation cell, claiming it was for safety reasons. His family says that three hours later they found him dead in the cell. “My dad had a name, he had a face. He was a real person,” said the man’s son. “He was not some piece of garbage to be tased to death.”
  • Princeton, West Virginia: A 16-year veteran officer who was involved in a domestic incident resigned. The incident was recorded on camera.
  • Delaware, Ohio: Two deputies and one trooper were charged in connection with the death of a man left at a Taco Bell. The officers picked up the man when they said he was drunk in his vehicle, and then left him at the Taco Bell. The man was then struck by a car and killed.
  • Youngstown, Ohio: An officer resigned instead of facing termination, and possible criminal prosecution. The resignation came after he was placed on administrative leave during a corruption investigation.
  • Jamestown, New York: An officer resigned amid allegations that he was pocketing prescription medicine that was evidence. “Because of his problem, every defense counsel wants to say, ‘Oh, everything is tainted. Everything has got to go. I need either a new trial or I need a plea far below what your guidelines would ordinarily give me,'” said the district attorney.
  • Webb County, Texas: After stealing a purse at a local hospital, a deputy was arrested and faces misdemeanor charges.
  • King County, Washington: A judge has ruled that King County deliberately withheld information on a sheriff’s deputy’s troubling behavior from attorneys of a man who was left permanently brain-damaged when he was tackled by the deputy. “This reckless indifference in its failure to produce these three documents — documents that were indisputably relevant — is the functional equivalent of intentional misconduct,” the judge said of the failure to turn over the information after the man’s family sued. The county settled with the family for $10 million. The man was left brain-damaged, paralyzed and unable to speak after he was tackled and pushed into a wall by the deputy. Harris had been wrongly identified as a suspect in an earlier bar fight.
  • Caledonia, Minnesota: A deputy wasn’t disciplined for drag racing his squad car, while on the job, against another officer. The decision to not discipline the officers is now being discussed by the County Board.
  • Pownal, Vermont: Following an investigation into allegations that he shot and killed a neighbor’s dog, a deputy resigned.
  • Los Angeles, California: A suspended sheriff’s deputy was sentenced to 90 days in jail for sexual relations with a teenage girl.
  • Minneapolis, Minnesota: A lawsuit says that an officer tried to strangle an 18-year-old. In the lawsuit, the boy says that he strangled him to the point of unconsciousness. He went to the doctor after and the doctor found evidence of “injuries consistent with strangulation.”


National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 09-14-12

Here are the 10 reports of police misconduct tracked for Friday, September 14, 2012:

  • Highland Heights, Kentucky: The former police chief pleaded guilty to two felony counts in federal court. He admitted to wire fraud and aggravated identity theft by using police credit cards: “I abused credit cards entrusted to me… and I am extremely remorseful for that.” He faces a maximum of 22 years with a $225,000 fine for each count.
  • Update: Providence, Rhode Island: The police chief accused of stealing $714 from a stripper’s pocketbook was sentenced to serve six months in prison.
  • Miami, Florida: A police officer was fired after an internal affairs investigation recommended his termination for habitually speeding in his patrol car.
  • Jermyn, Pennsylvania: A police officer was dismissed for “legal violations for obtaining and presenting a first aid card.” All officers are required to have a first aid card.
  • Moulton, Alabama: An officer was charged with torture and willful abuse of a child. He allegedly whipped an 8-year-old girl so severely that she had to be taken to the hospital. “Theses are very serious allegations, and this is very disheartening for the department,” said the police chief. “When you go into law enforcement you are charged to uphold the law. Not only are these allegations disheartening to me and our department, but law enforcement in general.”
  • Aransas Pass, Texas: Two officers have been fired following claims of misconduct and mistakes involving criminal investigations. They were fired following claims of missing evidence and shoddy criminal investigations.
  • Seattle, Washington: A police lieutenant was charged with violating a court order to stay away from his wife, adding a new allegation in the case against him. He was initially arrested for allegedly assaulting his wife.
  • Update: Prince George County, Maryland: An officer was given five years in prison and a $2.7 million fine for extortion in a cigarettes scheme.
  • Twin Rivers, California: A lawsuit alleges the abuse of five young men by police officers. It states that they were arrested for no apparent reason and three of them were brutally choked by an officer. The suit, which seeks monetary damages, alleges constitutional violations, including unreasonable seizure, excessive force, and derelict supervision and training.
  • Portland, Oregon: Federal civil rights investigators have found “reasonable cause” to believe that police use “unnecessary or unreasonable force” with persons who have mental illness, reports the U.S. Justice Department. In the 42-page letter, there is an outline for remedies including training and new policies to investigate police misconduct. “We found instances that support a pattern of dangerous used of force against persons who posed little or no threat and who could not, as a result of their mental illness, comply with officer’s commands,” says the report.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 09-13-12

Here are the 8 stories of Police Misconduct Tracked for Thursday, September 13, 2012:

  • Pinellas Park, Florida: The man shot by a Florida Highway Patrol trooper Monday morning at a cemetery was the cemetery’s owner. He is a Tampa man who has no criminal history and has held a concealed-weapons permit. Clifford Work remained hospitalized in fair condition as questions lingered about why a trooper shot the 48-year-old businessman.
  • New York, New York: A man has filed a lawsuit against officers who he says engaged him in a “brutal and sadistic” beating.
  • Update: Reading, Pennsylvania: Two officers were reinstated after being fired for a stun-gun scandal.
  • Lawrence, Massachusetts: Police Chief Bonilla has been indicted on multiple charge by a grand jury. They include trick, scheme or device to mislead in the procurement of supplies; fraudulent conversion of city property; unlawful use of official position; conspiracy; and extortion or attempted extortion. “These indictments allege that Bonilla, acting in his position as deputy police chief, fraudulently transferred ownership of 13 motor vehicles that belonged to the Lawrence Police Department to an automotive sales agency with a close affiliation to Mayor William Lantigua,” according to the District Attorney’s office.
  • Upland, Pennsylvania: A lawsuit has been filed against officers for assault and battery, failure to investigate, and malicious prosecution.
  • Brentwood, New Hampshire: A police lieutenant who retired after an internal investigation into missing evidence has been indicted on felony theft charges. Those charges include counts of receiving stolen property and theft by unauthorized taking for allegedly stealing a rifle from an evidence room.
  • Wheatland, California: An officer was charged with vehicular manslaughter in connection with a fatal crash.
  • Kansas City, Kansas: An officer scratched a trooper, and head-butted a colleague during his drunk driving arrest. The officer pleaded guilty in court.

Government Installs Cameras to Monitor Speed Cameras

From the Washington Post:

This is 100 percent “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” crazy. But true. It has to be true: My brain is not sophisticated enough to create something so meta and surreal from scratch.

WTOP’S Ari Ashe is reporting that Prince George’s County is mounting cameras to monitor its traffic cameras. This comes following a half dozen incidents of vandalism and general meanness toward the cameras in the county.

No Time to Consider Elderly Lady’s Medical Condition

From ABC News:

A Texas police department is defending an officer who is seen on a dashcam video pulling a 77-year-old woman out of her car during a traffic stop.

Sgt. Gene Geheb, an officer from the Keene Police Department, pulled Lynn Bedford over Aug. 19 for driving 66 mph in a 50 mph zone. But their stop grew heated when Bedford refused to hand over her driver’s license and insurance card, according to police reports and video from the officer’s dashcam. The officer was also wearing a microphone and camera.

Video at the link above.  This officer should have been much more patient.  He was polite at the start, but his fuse was much too short.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 09-12-12

Here are the 11 stories of misconduct tracked for Wednesday, September 12, 2012:

  • Quartzite, Arizona: The police chief was fired for gross negligence and willful misconduct; he had workers run criminal background checks on people that he didn’t like.
  • Update: Fresno, California: An officer pleaded not guilty to raping an unconscious woman. His lawyer said that the charges are a “mischaracterization of a consensual encounter.” The complaint, however, says that the officer drugged and raped the woman, and  also accuses him of taking nude photos of her.
  • New Rochelle, New York: An officer was arrested for allegedly trying to send a sexually explicit video to an undercover investigator posing as a 15-year-old girl.
  • Duson, Louisiana: The assistant police chief was suspended amid allegations of wrongdoing, including unlawful arrests. He is also accused of giving false testimony and making an illegal search and seizure during the investigation into a missing 15-year-old girl.
  • Tooele County, Utah: A deputy had his law enforcement credentials suspended for driving drunk. “Drinking and driving is totally intolerable in our department,” said the county sheriff.
  • Piedmont, Alabama: An officer was fired for violations, including conduct unbecoming an officer. The department declined to release the details.
  • Bridgeport, Connecticut: Two officers are being disciplined after either failing or refusing to take a drug test. “We take these kinds of offenses seriously,” said the police chief.
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Two officers are accused of a utility theft scheme that netted them thousands of dollars. The warrant for the officers says that they were running the identical scheme at four residential properties.
  • Portland, Oregon: A man has filed a lawsuit against officers who shot him on his own property after he went outside with a gun to investigate what he thought were intruders on his lawn. He says the officers were negligent for failing to identify themselves, or give him any warning or command to drop his gun. According to the suit, once the man was shot by the front door of his home, his wife and five children, between the ages of 5 and 17, were ordered to leave the house – having to step around or over his wounded body – before officers moved in to get him medical care. Law enforcement never apologized to him or his family, the suit says.
  • King County, Washington: A 70 page report was released that says the sheriff’s review board has an “absence of serious deliberation and explicit reasoning.”
  • Madison County, Wisconsin: A woman is suing officers for using excessive force when they tased her no less than ten times during an arrest.


And Find Out Why Your Police Dept Destroyed Evidence

From the Dallas Morning News:

MESQUITE — A Garland police officer is on restricted duty after authorities say he fired as many as 41 shots at an apparently unarmed man last month, killing him.

Garland police also said Tuesday that dash-cam video revealed that Officer Patrick Tuter crashed his squad car into a truck driven by the suspect, Michael Vincent Allen, before the shooting started. Initial reports had said Allen had hit Tuter’s car, prompting the officer to open fire.

“It’s still under investigation,” said Garland police spokesman Officer Joe Harn. “We’re trying to find out exactly why he started shooting.”

Well, isn’t he cooperating?  Perhaps a video would shed some light on this, but note:

Wallace took cellphone pictures and video after the shooting stopped, but he said Mesquite police confiscated the phone and deleted the video and pictures.


H/T: Carlos Miller.

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