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National Police Misconduct Reporting Project

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 01-15-16

Here are the seven reports of police misconduct tracked for Friday, January 15, 2016:

  • Santa Clara County, California: A deputy was arrested for DUI after brandishing a weapon at fast food drive thru.
  • Update: Ramsey County, Minnesota (First reported 06-29-15): A deputy pled guilty to beating a K-9 while he was intoxicated. He won’t be terminated, but he will be transferred out of his unit and suffer a pay cut.
  • Bexar County, Texas: A deputy was fired and charged for raping a female jail inmate in a transport van.
  • Spokane, Washington: An officer was suspended for having a sexual relationship with a married woman he met first on a domestic violence call to her home.
  • Austin, Texas: An officer was suspended for three months for his unjustified use of a stun gun on a man in August. He was also ordered to undergo a psychological evaluation.
  • Update: Miramar, Florida (First reported 07-18-14): An officer was found guilty of stealing liquor from women suspected in a then-recent theft.
  • New York, New York: An undercover officer’s account of being robbed at knifepoint has been contradicted by newly released surveillance footage.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 01-14-16

Here are the nine reports of police misconduct tracked for Thursday, January 14, 2016:

  • Glendive, Montana: An officer was arrested for DUI and felony drug possession.
  • Houston, Texas: A now-former officer pled guilty to charges related to his role in 2013 armored car heist. He resigned last year.
  • Springfield, Massachusetts: A now-former officer pled not guilty to charges he stole $400,000 from evidence over the course of 30 years on the force.
  • Update: Watervliet, New York: A now-former officer was sentenced to two years in prison for participation in a gang and drug ring.
  • California Highway Patrol: A trooper was arrested for molesting a 10-year-old girl.
  • Update: U.S. Customs and Border Patrol: An agent was indicted in the decapitation death of a Mexican national.
  • Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources: An officer was arrested for sexual assault of a teen. He had previously been fired by Honolulu Police Department, where he had been a 12-year veteran, “after he transported a female runaway without authorization and altered another officer’s name and badge number.”
  • Monticello, Utah: The police chief was fired after he and his department ignored a woman’s 911 call to report an officer’s break-in and assault. The woman was the officer’s estranged wife. The officer was arrested and charged for his actions last month.
  • Update: Mamou, Louisiana: The second of two former police chiefs was sentenced to one year and one day in prison for tasing non-combative prisoners in violation of their civil rights.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Recap 01-13-16

Here are the nine reports of police misconduct tracked for Wednesday, January 13, 2016:

  • Las Vegas, Nevada: A now-former officer facing federal civil rights charges for a violent arrest caught on a body camera.
  • Indianapolis, Indiana: An officer was one of several individuals arrested in drug investigation.
  • Gibson County, Tennessee: A now-former sheriff and now-former chief deputy were among 12 individuals indicted after an audit revealed missing drug-buy funds and misallocated inmate prescriptions. The former sheriff was charged with 55 counts of official misconduct, 39 counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud, and 13 counts of theft ranging from less than $500 to more than $10,000. The former chief deputy was charged with 42 counts of official misconduct, 39 counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud, and several theft and conspiracy counts. The other individuals charged worked at the jail in some capacity but it is unclear how many of them were sworn officers. At least one was a dispensary nurse.
  • Bridgeport, Connecticut: An officer who was acquitted of excessive force has been charged with filing false report about racist message that was directed at him. He admitted to writing the message himself.
  • Update: Colorado Springs, Colorado (First reported 07-29-15): A now-former detective was sentenced to four years’ probation for misconduct. He had sex with a kidnapping victim and then tried to cover it up.
  • Lewis and Clark County, Montana: A deputy was charged with assault for pulling his gun on a man at a party while he was drunk.
  • Fairfield County, Ohio: Two deputies who are also a married couple are no longer with department after being caught shoplifting from Wal-Mart in uniform. One resigned; the other was fired.
  • Victoria County, Texas: A deputy pled guilty to official oppression. He was sentenced to probation given deferred adjudication, leaving the door open for expungement of the conviction.
  • Del Norte, California: County prosecutors have moved to have a video that shows officers stealing from a criminal defendant excluded from evidence. They are shown going through his wallet and laughing as they pocket the money.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 01-12-16

Here are the 12 reports of police misconduct tracked for Tuesday, January 12, 2016:

  • Update: Baltimore, Maryland (First reported 12-18-15): A prosecutor is reviewing cases of an officer who was suspended in October and banned from court houses after video recording someone on court grounds. The City has paid at least $196,500 as a result of lawsuits in which the officer was named since 2012.
  • Glasgow, Kentucky: An officer was suspended for misconduct. An internal investigation is ongoing.
  • Pennsylvania State Police: A trooper was arrested for indecent exposure and lewdness.
  • Terre Haute, Indiana: An officer was charged with battery, criminal confinement, trespass and intimidation for actions against a woman.
  • Charlotte-Mecklenburg, North Carolina: An officer was arrested for DWI.
  • Update: Linden, New Jersey (First reported 03-24-15): The prosecutor’s office said that the officer who caused a fatal crash in March was not punished appropriately for his two previous DUIs. As a result, the office is assuming oversight of the department’s Internal Affairs division until further notice.
  • Hingham, Massachusetts: An officer was indicted for fraud and has been suspended without pay. He had been collecting $2,000 per week in compensation for an allegedly fabricated work-related injury.
  • Update: Harrisburg, Pennsylvania: An officer entered a diversion program in exchange for the court closing the embezzlement case against her. If she completes the program successfully, she will not have a criminal record.
  • Minneapolis, Minnesota: An officer was arrested in Savage for DUI because he was driving erratically.
  • Caldwell County, Texas: The sheriff’s department and three deputies are being sued for excessive force.
  • U.S. Customs and Border Patrol: An officer was arrested after setting off fireworks inside and outside of his hotel room. According to the report, he was charged with “refusing to submit to arrest or detention, criminal mischief, cruelty to animals, possession of a usable amount of marijuana and disorderly conduct.”
  • Boise, Idaho: An officer may have been asleep at the wheel of his patrol vehicle before sideswiping another car. The original press release indicated a possible car malfunction but none were found in the investigation. Authorities said the officer was not intoxicated at the time of the collision.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 01-11-16

Here are the nine reports of police misconduct tracked for Monday, January 11, 2016:

  • Taos, New Mexico: A sergeant was acquitted of criminal battery and is appealing her recommended termination.
  • Buncombe County, North Carolina (2): A deputy was fired after an excessive force complaint. The complaint was supported by body camera footage. Later in the day, a second deputy was fired for his role in the same incident. ;
  • Update: Jefferson County, Arkansas (First reported 07-16-14): A now-former deputy is on trial for battery for shooting Dedric Jones while he was off duty.
  • San Diego County, California: A deputy was disciplined for making a German-speaking suspect watch Hitler videos. The original allegations suggested he and perhaps other deputies verbally abused the man, but that was not confirmed in the internal investigation.
  • Simpsonville, Kentucky: An officer arrested for participating in a police station robbery of cash, drugs, and weapons.
  • Update: National Institute of Standards & Technology (First reported 08-18-15): A now-former officer was sentenced to three years in prison for trying to synthesize methamphetamine at NIST. He was discovered when the lab exploded.
  • Dallas, Texas: An officer who was arrested for DWI in January 2015 has been fired. She may appeal.
  • Pickens County, South Carolina: A deputy was arrested for first-degree domestic violence and discharging a firearm in city limits. He was fired.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 01-08-16

Here are the 11 reports of police misconduct tracked for Friday, January 8, 2016:

  • Florence County, South Carolina: A deputy was fired after his arrest for stealing ammunition from Wal-Mart.
  • Hancock County, West Virginia: A deputy was arrested for DUI while driving a drug task force vehicle.
  • New York, New York: The City settled two lawsuits concerning dragnet surveillance of Muslims.  New rules for the police are among the initiatives to be implemented, per settlement terms.
  • Update: Chicago, Illinois (First reported 04-15-15): Civil lawyers claim that documents obtained via Freedom of Information Act include accusations that witnesses to the fatal shooting of Laquan McDonald were threatened and coerced by CPD to lie.
  • Update: Prince George’s County, Maryland (First reported 12-03-15): A now-former officer was sentenced to five years in prison for pointing a gun at the head of a black man. The officer had out-of-town guests in his patrol car and apparently picked the disagreement with the man to show-off his power to them.
  • Update: Wise County, Texas (First reported 09-24-14): A now-former deputy was sentenced to 16 months in prison for stripping sex offenders naked and taking pictures of them.
  • Update: Fort Wayne, Indiana (First reported 11-18-14): A now-former detective pled guilty to stealing money from a motorcycle club of current and former police officers.
  • Update: Denver, Colorado (First reported 02-27-15): An officer was acquitted of domestic violence charges in November and has since resumed policing duties.
  • Update: Springfield, Louisiana (First reported 07-12-12): A now-former chief who pled guilty to a misdemeanor for ticket fixing—having been initially charged with four felonies—was re-appointed to the force by a new mayor. Both the former chief and the former mayor had been forced to step down from their positions as part of their plea agreement, but no bar was established to prevent reinstatement. The prosecutor said, “I just never thought anyone would be dumb enough to hire him back.”
  • Update: Marion County, Florida (First reported 12-09-15): A deputy who was suspended last month for false reporting during a traffic stop has been fired.
  • Stockton, California: An officer was suspended for allegedly issuing a ‘revenge citation’ against a man who had been critical of police on facebook.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 01-07-16

Here are the ten reports of police misconduct tracked for Thursday, January 7, 2016:

  • Washington County, Tennessee: A major was arrested on theft and forgery charges in another county.
  • Update: Falmouth, Kentucky (First reported 03-30-15): The now-former chief was sentenced to probation after he pled guilty to stealing $10,000 from drug task force fund.
  • Los Angeles County, California: The County is being sued by family of Noel Aguilar after footage was released that shows deputies fatally shooting him in the back during arrest.
  • DeKalb County, Georgia: The district attorney recommended charging an officer with a number of charges including murder and felony assault for killing Anthony Hill.
  • Quincy, Massachusetts: A lieutenant was suspended six months for ‘double-dipping’—getting paid by two entities for same work.
  • Marin County, California: A deputy was fired after he was outed as leader of a bike gang that was dangerously stunting through streets. Police couldn’t pursue the gang on high speed chases for public safety reasons.
  • St. Louis County, Missouri: An officer was arrested for assaulting his girlfriend while he was off duty.
  • Port Royal, South Carolina: An officer was fired for sexual harassment. He allegedly made sexual advances toward a woman in his patrol car.
  • Plaquemine, Louisiana: An officer was fired after his arrest for kidnapping his estranged wife.
  • Greene County, Missouri: A deputy was arrested for child pornography.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 01-06-16

Here are the nine reports of police misconduct tracked for Wednesday, January 6, 2016:

  • Canonsburg, Pennsylvania: An officer was suspended for threatening a judge.
  • Baltimore, Maryland: An officer was arrested after leading state police on high-speed chase.
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: An officer was arrested for domestic violence. This is his third arrest.
  • Update: Colchester, Vermont (First reported 11-12-14): A now-former officer’s sentencing has been rescheduled—again—for May. He pled guilty to stealing drugs from the evidence room.
  • Update: Dover, Delaware (First reported 05-06-15): The City settled with a man whose jaw was broken by an officer who kicked him in the face when he was on the ground. The officer was acquitted of criminal charges in December.
  • Update: Onslow County, North Carolina (First reported 05-15-15): A now-former deputy pled guilty to child porn charges.
  • Update: Massachusetts State Police (First reported 08-13-15): A trooper was found guilty of domestic assault and battery for breaking his girlfriend’s collarbone at a party. In the initial news report, the trooper blamed his twin brother for the incident.
  • Novato, California: An officer was charged with facilitating child pornography for exchanging lewd messages and digital files with a
  • Update: Texas Department of Public Safety (First reported as Waller County, TX 07-16-15): The trooper who pulled over Sandra Bland has been indicted for perjury and fired.

Worst of the Month — December 2015

So for December we have selected the shooting death of Andrew Thomas in Paradise, California.  According to news reports, here’s what happened:  Thomas was seen leaving the parking lot of a bar and his vehicle didn’t have its lights on — even though it was late at night.  Officer Patrick Feaster suspected the driver might be intoxicated and so pursued Thomas to pull him over and investigate further.

No problem so far.  We want police to be alert for impaired drivers who endanger other people.

Next, Thomas did not pull over after Feaster was behind him with his police lights flashing.

Moments later, Thomas’s SUV crashed and his wife was ejected from the vehicle.  She died.

Next, things get even worse.  Officer Feaster is seen on dash-cam video walking toward the crashed SUV.  The video shows Thomas trying to climb out of the overturned SUV.  Feaster draws his sidearm and shoots Thomas in the neck and he falls back into his SUV.

After the shooting, Officer Feaster gets on his radio to report that the driver is refusing his commands to get out of the vehicle.  He does not mention that he shot the driver.  Feaster also reports that a injured woman is unresponsive, but the video shows that he is not checking on her condition or rendering aid.

Other police and responders get to the scene, but ten minutes go by before Feaster says he fired his weapon.  It is very unclear what could be the justification for shooting a man after a vehicle crash in these circumstances.  Officer Feaster says he was not threatened, but that his gun went off accidentally.

On a police body camera, Feaster is heard telling the watch commander that his gun went off, but he didn’t think the driver was hit because he wasn’t aiming his weapon in the driver’s direction.  Thomas initially survived the shot to his neck, but was paralyzed.  He died weeks later.

Despite community outrage, the local prosecutor, Mike Ramsey, declined to file any criminal charges against Officer Feaster because he said he lacked sufficient evidence to prove a crime in court.  That’s very odd.  Prosecutors would typically be relieved to know that the incident was captured on videotape.

View the video for yourself here:



National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 01-01-16 to 01-05-16

Here are the eleven reports of police misconduct tracked for Friday, January 1 through Tuesday, January 5, 2016:

  • Kitsap County, Washington: A sergeant admitted to driving drunk after he was found by an officer covered in his own vomit while behind the wheel. However, no arrest was made in the case. Video footage of the incident was recently released.
  • Pinellas County, Florida: The County is investigating a deputy who shot a suspect whose hands were cuffed behind his back. The suspect is recovering.
  • Palm Bay, Florida: An officer was fired for inappropriate contact with a teenaged girl on house arrest.
  • Harrisville, Utah: An officer was fired for sexual misconduct.
  • Montgomery County, Tennessee: A deputy was arrested for DUI on New Year’s
  • Update: Suffolk County, New York: The department was placed under federal investigation in the wake of the arrest of the now-former chief.
  • Cleveland, Ohio: An officer was given a one-year suspended jail sentence for sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl he met while working at a private security. He has resigned on Monday.
  • West Fargo, North Dakota: A school resource officer was arrested for DUI.
  • Baton Rouge, Louisiana: An officer was charged with battery for repeatedly slamming a man’s head into the ground during a bar fight while off duty.
  • North Charleston, South Carolina: An officer was arrested for domestic violence.
  • Shelby, Michigan: The police chief was suspended without pay for administrative violations.  The Michigan State Police are investigating him for potential criminal conduct.

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