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Sunday, August 31, 2008

Seattle Police Officer Charged With Assault, Perjury For South Dakota Shooting

Slog.thestranger.com by JONAH SPANGENTHAL-LEE - AUGUST 28, 2008

A South Dakota Grand Jury has charged Seattle Police detective Ron Smith and four other members of the Iron Pigs Motorcycle Club—a biker gang made up of law enforcement officers and firefighters—for their involvement in an August 8th shooting at a Loud American Roadhouse bar in Sturgis, South Dakota. Smith and four other officers—one from Colorado and two others from Washington—were on vacation in Sturgis for an annual biker rally when a fight broke out at the Loud American Roadhouse. Smith claims he was attacked by a Hell’s Angel and fired his weapon in self defense. Smith is a high-ranking member of the Seattle Police Officers Guild and the editor of the guild’s monthly paper, The Guardian. Some of Smith’s rants have been featured here on Slog. The Grand Jury has asked that Smith be charged for aggravated assault or simple assault, perjury and for carrying a concealed weapon without a permit. The four other Iron Pigs members—Scott Lazalde, James Rector, Erik Pingel and Dennis McCoy—are also being charged with carrying unpermitted weapons. Joseph McGuire, the Hell’s Angel who was shot, has also been charged with Assault.

If convicted of aggravated assault, Smith could face up to 15 years in jail and a $30,000 fine. A Perjury conviction would add another five years while the unpermitted weapon charge has a maximum sentence of one year in jail and a two-thousand dollar fine. This morning, the Seattle Police Department issued a brief statement: Upon the Department’s notification of the incident in Sturgis, South Dakota, all SPD personnel involved were placed on administrative leave. As the Department continues to gather and receive information, the officers will remain on administrative leave. Seattle Police Officers Guild would not comment on the charges.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Ex-cop, 2nd man charged in $1M insurance fraud

The Philadelphia Daily News by Damon C. Williams (williadc@phillynews.com 215-854-5924)
originally posted May 23, 2008


The alleged mastermind of an insurance scam that involved a Philadelphia police officer was charged yesterday with defrauding 10 insurance companies of more than $1 million through an elaborate scheme of fake car accidents and fraudulent police reports. The former officer, Deshane Riggins, 28, was charged in January in connection with writing a host of phony, accident reports. The District Attorney's Office announced yesterday that authorities nabbed the alleged ringleader, Wallace Morris, Sr., known as "Pops," of Hatfield Street near 57th. Morris was charged with 187 counts of insurance fraud, bribery, conspiracy, perjury, theft and related charges, District Attorney Lynne Abraham said. Morris and Riggins worked in unison for more than two years to swindle at least 10 insurance companies through more than 187 phony claims, Abraham said.

The insurance companies - Progressive, State Farm, AIG, Allstate, Cambridge, Erie, GEICO, Liberty Mutual, Nationwide and American Independent - paid out more than $1 million to the claimants and numerous doctors and lawyers allegedly involved. The plot involved hundreds of people, including friends and family members, along with a wide array of doctors and lawyers, Abraham said. Morris and Riggins allegedly conspired to create fake accidents, explaining that if somebody had some damage to their car, they "agreed with Morris to get a corrupt agreement together to make a few illegal bucks from claiming insurance," Abraham said. The scheme worked like this: There were two cars with two passengers in each, making a total of six people altogether who could file. Riggins, with prior knowledge of the faked accidents, wrote the fraudulent police report to strengthen the insurance claims, Abraham said. Morris then steered the claimants to doctors and lawyers who were also in on the scheme. Morris got money from both ends of the shady deal, Abraham said. He allegedly received a fee from each doctor or lawyer he sent to them, and also wanted a piece of the insurance payout that the claimants received from the insurance companies.

The plan unraveled, Abraham said, when investigators from Progressive questioned one of the claimants, who then admitted the accident was faked. Progressive then tipped off the D.A.'s office, which led to the arrest of Riggins and Morris. Riggins, a seven-year veteran of the force, was assigned to the 14th District when he was placed on administrative duties and later fired in February. Riggins was charged with 19 counts each of insurance fraud, tampering with public records, bribery and criminal conspiracy. Abraham said that Morris and Riggins raked in up to $100,000 in the scheme. Riggins, facing "a lengthy prison term," has been cooperative with investigators, Abraham said, and her office will soon arrest the lawyers and doctors involved in the plot, once their complicity is established. "These cases simply cannot exist unless there is an agreement, a conspiracy, between doctors, lawyers, police officers in this case and a mastermind," Abraham said. "And in this case, Morris appears to be the mastermind." 

Friday, August 29, 2008

Former NYPD cop under arrest as 'Bling Bandit'

Former NYPD cop under arrest as 'Bling Bandit'
The Staten Island Advance - August 29, 2008

A former city police detective is under arrest on bank robbery charges and the Queens DA says he's the so-called Bling Bandit. A spokesman for the Queens District Attorney says 59-year-old Athelston Kelson will be arraigned later today. He was being held at the 105th Precinct in Queens. The Bling Bandit -- who wears a flashy pinkie ring and watch during stickups -- is wanted in connection with nine bank robberies over the past 2 1/2 months. Seven were on Long Island and two were in Queens. During some of the robberies, the man displayed what appears to be a black semiautomatic handgun. The robbery spree began on June 12; the last heist was Tuesday.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Cops Guilty of Stealing Government Money

Ramsey Co. employees convicted in fraud case

MINNEAPOLIS -- Two members of the special investigations unit of the Ramsey County sheriff's office have been convicted of stealing government money and conspiracy. The convictions of Timothy Rehak and Mark Naylon came Wednesday afternoon in federal court in Minneapolis. The jury got the case Wednesday morning. The men, both 48, were acquitted of four wire fraud charges. The men faced the charges for a November 2004 incident in which they searched a motel room in which the FBI had planted $13,500 in supposed drug money. They admitted taking some of the money during the search, but said they were playing a joke on a third officer. Rehak is a former St. Paul police officer and experienced street officer who now works for the Sheriff's Department. Naylon is a Sheriff's Department employee, but is not a peace officer. They are both close friends of Sheriff Bob Fletcher, and Naylon was the best man at Fletcher's second wedding.

Naylon was hired as the sheriff's public information officer to deal with the media, and spent time in the sheriff's Special Investigations Unit, participating in arrests, searches, seizures and other police work. Rehak testified that it was generally known that Naylon's involvement in cases should not be mentioned in the police reports. Naylon and Rehak were subjects of FBI "integrity tests" in 2003 and 2004, in which the FBI planted supposed drug money to see what the men would do with it. Both tests were filmed and showed to a jury last week. U.S. District Judge Patrick Schiltz dismissed two counts stemming from the second test, but kept the charges related to the first test, which took place at the Best Western Kelly Inn in St. Paul. Prosecutors say a convicted meth dealer working with the FBI called Rehak and told him a fictitious drug dealer named "Vinnie" had left drugs and money at a hotel room, but had been arrested in Wisconsin and wanted someone to get his stuff. Rehak and Naylon went to the hotel with their supervisor, Sgt. Rolland Martinez, who had a search warrant. The three found a bag of money and some drug residue and dumped it on one of the beds. In the video, while Martinez is in the bathroom, Naylon can be seen pointing at the money. Rehak gives a roll of bills, containing $6,000, to Naylon, who puts it in his jacket pocket.

The FBI had placed $13,500 in the bag. But Martinez, who was not a target of the integrity test, counted only $7,500 and wrote that amount on the search warrant receipt. Rehak and Naylon say Naylon took the money to play a practical joke on Martinez, with Naylon planning to hide the roll of bills and force Martinez to return to the room later to retrieve it. Rehak testified in court that when Naylon couldn't find a place to hide the money, he took it with him. Martinez testified that the pair told him later that they'd found $6,000 in a mattress or a box spring. So the three went back to the hotel room. Rehak changed the copy of the search warrant receipt which said $7,500 by writing a "1" in front of the "7" and changing the "7" to a "3." The sloppy receipt -- still signed only by Martinez -- now read that $13,500 had been recovered. Government testimony has indicted the men violated a number of St. Paul police department and Ramsey County Sheriff's Department policies. Rehak maintains his police report was accurate -- minus details about the practical joke. He says there was no intent to keep the money. Rehak and Naylon no longer work for the Ramsey County Sheriff's Office. They turned in their resignations Wednesday.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

COP 'ROAD-RAGE' VICTIM SUES

The New York Post by KEVIN FASICK and CYNTHIA R. FAGEN - August 27, 2008

He has 25 surgical staples in his head from a bloody road-rage beating allegedly inflicted by two hot-headed off-duty female cops - and now it could cost the city $1 million for each shiny metal fastener. The lawyer for Marlon Smith, 35, an office-supply worker and a father of five, filed papers yesterday saying he intends to sue the city for $25 million for civil-rights violations, police brutality and wrongful arrest. "I just want to know why they would treat another human being that way," attorney Derek Sells said of Officers Koleen Robinson and Michelle Anglin. The cops, who were stripped of their guns and badges, pleaded not guilty to charges they clubbed, beat and pistol-whipped Smith. The officers allegedly flew into a rage because the door of Smith's car was open and they objected to driving around it. "I was just trying to protect myself, to see my kids again," Smith said. "I thought I was going to die, that they were going to shoot me."

Sunday, August 24, 2008

FBI investigates Oakland City Hall for corruption

FBI investigates Oakland City Hall for corruption
The Associated Press - August 23, 2008

OAKLAND, Calif.—Oakland city officials say they are ready to cooperate with federal authorities investigating allegations of corruption at City Hall. The FBI has requested city documents as part of its probe of alleged nepotism and fraud under former City Administrator Deborah Edgerly. Mayor Ron Dellums fired Edgerly in July amid a police probe into whether she had interfered with an investigation into a violent street gang. City officials say the federal investigation seems to be expanding into questionable payroll practices, including $3 million in bonuses and other perks awarded with little oversight. Court documents show that authorities are also scrutinizing personnel records for Edgerly and her son and daughter—all of whom were city employees.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Feds making inquiries into Kenny Lazo death

Newsday by MICHAEL AMON AND KEITH HERBERT - August 22, 2008
michael.amon@newsday.com,keith.herbert@newsday.com

Suffolk police officials said Friday federal authorities are reviewing the death of a Bay Shore man struck by officers with flashlights and who later died after passing out in a precinct interview room. FBI agents met Suffolk police brass and detectives earlier this year to discuss the April 12 death of Kenny Lazo and look at the department's investigatory file, Suffolk police officials said. Those files will soon be sent to the U.S. attorney's office for the Eastern District in Brooklyn, officials said. "They're basically monitoring the case," said Insp. David Ferrara, chief of the Suffolk police's Internal Affairs Bureau, adding that the FBI "looked at everything." Suffolk Police Commissioner Richard Dormer called the meeting -- the timing of which he wouldn't reveal -- "a preliminary sit-down." "We don't know what they're going to do with it," Dormer said. Suffolk police were cooperating, he said. Monica McLean, a spokeswoman for the FBI's New York field office, would not confirm the meeting nor the request for files, saying only the FBI was "aware" that Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota was probing the case. "We are not involved at this time," she said. A spokesman for Benton Campbell, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, declined to comment. The federal inquiries add another level of scrutiny to Lazo's death, which is also being probed by Suffolk homicide detectives, internal affairs and district attorney's office investigators. Prosecutors have told Lazo's family attorney a grand jury will soon consider the case. The New York State Commission of Correction, which regulates prisons, jails and precinct lockups, said Friday it had closed its own probe because Lazo did not die in a lockup. He was pronounced dead on arrival at Southside Hospital. Lazo, 24, was struck multiple times with metal flashlights while struggling with officers who had stopped him on the Southern State Parkway, police have said. Lazo was struck after trying to grab an officer's gun, according to police.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Hillside cop charged in bribery scheme

New Jersey News - August 15, 2007

A Hillside police officer was charged today with passing bribes to a state official so he and his girlfriend could steal funds from a program intended to help needy Union County families in danger of becoming homeless. Hillside Officer Vitor "Victor" Pedreiras, 30, is also accused of coaching his girlfriend on how to lie to state investigators once they uncovered the scheme to bilk $14,963 from the housing program offered by the state Department of Community Affairs, authorities said. Pedreiras, who was assigned to the police department's community safety bureau, became a police officer after graduating in Dec. 2003 from the John H. Stamler Police Academy. He was suspended after a state grand jury indictment was handed up late Tuesday. He faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted on charges of conspiracy, bribery and official misconduct, according to the indictment. He was also indicted on charges of theft, falsifying records, witness tampering and hindering prosecution.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Ramsey County corruption trial opens

Ramsey County corruption trial opens
The Star Tribune by ROCHELLE OLSON - August 19, 2008
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota



A 10-second FBI video clip of two top Ramsey County sheriff's aides stashing $6,000 in purported drug money is either evidence of corruption or a stupid practical joke, according to opening statements in their federal trial Tuesday. "Our criminal justice system fails when those who are charged with enforcing our laws act corruptly," Assistant U.S. Attorney Joe Dixon said in his 30-minute opening statement to 16 jurors. St. Paul Police Inspector Timothy Rehak and Mark Naylon, Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher's public information officer, face identical eight-count federal indictments for two "integrity" tests in November 2004 and July 2005. Both have been on paid leave since last summer. They are accused of six counts each of "honest services" wire fraud, depriving state citizens of their honest services. Each is also accused of stealing government money and conspiring to violate the civil rights of a person. U.S. District Judge Patrick Schiltz said he will push to wrap up the case by next Friday. Defense lawyer Kevin Short, who is representing Rehak, told jurors the case has nothing to do with police corruption. He admitted that it was "stupid" for the two men to play "a practical joke with search warrant procedure." However, Short maintained that the two men's act was nothing more than a joke and that they never intended to steal the money. Rehak, a police officer since 1986, was assigned in 2004 to work for Fletcher's special investigations unit. Dixon said Rehak's friend and one-time neighbor Naylon also worked in that capacity even though he was a public information officer and not a licensed peace officer.

In October 2004, the FBI received information on Rehak, Dixon said. Working with an informant who faced a long prison sentence for drug charges, the FBI designed a test in which officers can either "act corruptly or lawfully," Dixon said. The informant called Rehak and told him that a drug dealer named Vincent (Vinny) Pellagatti from Chicago was in custody in Wisconsin, but wanted to get at drugs and money stashed in room 503 at the Kelly Inn, near the State Capitol. Both sides say Rehak responded to the informant by saying, "Let me see if I can't scarf that out of here." Dixon said the comment was a sign that Rehak was going after the money. Short said it was evidence of an "honest cop" working with a long-time informant to try to make a bust. In November 2004, federal authorities planted $13,500 in marked bills in a room at the Kelly Inn. They then videotaped Rehak and Naylon pulling the money bag out of a dresser. Naylon motioned to Rehak, who flipped him a fistful of bills. Naylon put them in a pocket. A third deputy was in the bathroom and out of view. When he came out, Rehak and Naylon both helped count and inventory the remaining $7,500. Later, however, Rehak and Naylon conducted database searches and determined that the alleged drug dealer was fictional. They called the third deputy and told him they had found $6,000 more in a mattress at the hotel, Dixon said. At no point did they tell the man it was a joke, he emphasized.

But Short said the two wanted to mess with the third officer, whom they said had a bloated ego and a penchant for going home early. They wanted to wait until the officer was "home in his footie pajamas" before calling him back to inventory the rest of the money, Short said. In another integrity check in July 2005, FBI agents placed a large amount of money in a car they recorded as stolen and had the same informant tell Rehak that drugs and money were in the car. Dixon showed FBI video of Naylon and Rehak entering the vehicle and finding a stash of cash. Rehak is heard on the tape repeating an expletive and saying, "another [expletive] setup." Naylon says, "Is that what it is? ... So we just [expletive] walk away?" Rehak says, "They're probably [expletive] watching us." Dixon and Short both said that Rehak knew a drug dealer wouldn't leave a bag of money and no drugs. They did not take any of the money. Short said Rehak's behavior was that of a cop looking for a bad guy and that's why he and Naylon conducted surveillance on the vehicle overnight and again the next day. Paul Rogosheske, who is representing Naylon, did not make an opening statement Tuesday. He said he might wait until today or later in the case. Either way, testimony is expected to begin today. Schiltz read a list of potential witnesses, including Fletcher, Police Chief John Harrington, former Police Chief Bill Finney and defense attorney Joe Friedberg.  Rochelle Olson • 612-673-1747

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

City leaders must get serious about policing the police

City leaders must get serious about policing the police

The New York Dailys News by CHRISTOPHER DUNN & DONNA LIEBERMAN - August 20, 2008

Caught on videotape: An NYPD officer lowers his shoulder and viciously levels an innocent bike rider in the heart of Times Square; another officer repeatedly hits a man curled up on a public street with his baton in broad daylight; and yet a third officer beats a handcuffed man with his baton, takes a break to answer his cell phone and then resumes the beating. Shocking as these recently revealed incidents are, they are no surprise. Rather, brazen attacks like these are the predictable result of Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly's decision to turn a blind eye to officer misconduct over the past few years. Most complaints of police abuse of civilians are investigated by the Civilian Complaint Review Board, an independent city agency. But when the board finds misconduct has occurred, Kelly controls whether the Police Department pursues the case. He also has final say over all discipline, which can range from merely giving verbal "instructions" about how to handle future civilian encounters to firing the officer. And Kelly doesn't have to explain his decision to anyone.

During Kelly's most recent tenure as commissioner, discipline of officers found guilty by the CCRB has deteriorated dramatically. Between 2002 and 2004, about one-half of those officers received discipline more severe than instructions, about one-quarter received instructions, and a tiny number of cases were closed by the department without further action. (The remaining cases ended without discipline for miscellaneous other reasons.) Since 2005, however, only one-quarter of officers have received punishment more severe than instructions - half the rate of the three previous years. Conversely, slap-on-the-wrist instructions rose dramatically, comprising more than half of all cases completed in 2006. Most troubling, the rate of cases the department has simply closed without action or discipline has spiked, from less than 4% each year between 2002 and 2006 to nearly 35% in 2007 and more than 30% so far this year. As a result of all this, the proportion of officers given only instructions or whose cases are just dropped has more than tripled since 2002, rising in 2007 to 66% of the cases where the CCRB had found misconduct.

And we are not just talking about minor misconduct. Officers using excessive force against civilians - the most serious form of misconduct - accounted for more than 10% of the cases dropped in 2007 and more than a quarter of the cases so far this year. Meanwhile, minor misconduct like offensive language or discourtesy has accounted for less than 5% of the dropped cases since 2006. This lax discipline, which contrasts starkly with the department's zero-tolerance approach toward regular New Yorkers, sends a clear message to the rank and file: If you engage in misconduct, chances are you will get away with it (unless you are stupid or unlucky enough to get caught on videotape). It is long past time for Mayor Bloomberg, the City Council and even the Justice Department to do something. First, to eliminate the problem of cases being dropped by a Police Department that may be protecting its own officers, control over the prosecution of CCRB cases must shift from the NYPD to the board.

Next, it may be time to take away from the police commissioner exclusive control over discipline. At a minimum, misconduct cases should be heard by a judge outside the NYPD who would recommend discipline. If the police commissioner departs from that recommendation, he should have to provide a detailed, publicly available explanation. Finally, since local officials seem unwilling or unable to take on Kelly, it's time for the Justice Department to investigate whether the NYPD is sweeping misconduct under the rug. A new day is coming in Washington, and one of the new administration's first initiatives must be to demand pubic accountability from the nation's largest Police Department. Dramatic as they may be, chance videotapes of police beatings are no substitute for real oversight.

Dunn is associate legal director and Lieberman executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

2 cops are charged in Bronx road rage pistol-whip

The New York Daily News by KERRY BURKE AND ALISON GENDAR - August 18, 2008

Two off-duty female cops yelled, "We are the police!" - and then pistol-whipped a Bronx man in what authorities call a case of road rage. NYPD Officers Michelle Anglin, 37, and Koleen Robinson, 24, were charged with assault, gang assault and criminal possession of a weapon for the Williamsbridge beatdown. It took 25 staples to close the gash in Marlon Smith's head, authorities said. Smith, 35, had pulled up alongside Robinson's black Suburban with his driver's side car door wide open as the two cars sat near E. 218th St. and White Plains Road at 5p.m. Friday. "Close the door, you f------ a------!" one of the two off-duty transit cops yelled as Smith came perilously close to scraping Robinson's SUV. Smith proceeded to make a big mistake: He yelled at one of the officers, "You are a f------ b----!" And then it was on. Robinson jumped out of the driver's seat and Anglin got out of the passenger's side, authorities said. Smith tried to close his car door but Anglin, a cop since January 2005, was too quick and squirted pepper spray in his face, court records say. When Smith tried to grab Anglin, Robinson, who joined the NYPD in January 2006, punched him, the records stated. A witness who tried to break up the brawl heard one or both of the women warn Smith, "Do you know who you are f------ with? We are the police!" In the melee, Smith tried to grab one of the cops. Smith, the witness, and one of the cops all tumbled to the ground. As Smith, 5-feet-9, lay on the ground, Robinson, 5-feet-8, 150 pounds, beat him in the head with her baton until he grabbed it out of her hand, authorities said. Anglin, 5-feet-5 and 138 pounds, then bashed Smith in the face with her gun. Smith told investigators that at some point he looked up and, squinting, saw one of the women - he couldn't say which - point a gun in his face. The NYPD Internal Affairs Bureau is investigating the incident. Smith declined to comment. Anglin and Robinson were suspended and stripped of their guns as they were arraigned Sunday on the gang assault charges. Robinson's bail was $10,000 cash or bond. Anglin's bail was set at $25,000 cash or bond. Both work at Transit District 12 in the Bronx.  agendar@nydailynews.com

Sunday, August 17, 2008

DC Police Narcotics Unit Corruption ALLOWED

DC Police Narcotics Unit Corruption ALLOWED - August 13, 2008

FROM: http://community.myfoxdc.com/blogs/Ten30DC CLICK HERE

August 12, 2005, FOX 5 REPORTER Paul Wagner was on the scene of the Office of Professional Responsibility RAID on the Narcotics and Special Investigations Division -- 1000s of items of evidence were seized...one member's locker contained at least 16 handguns previously taken from DC Citizens &/or visitors but never processed. Drugs, money, prisoner's property, jewelry in DC Police Possession -- many items without any paperwork. Assault rifles hidden under sofas and in closets taken from someone, for some reason...

ALL DC was a BUZZ -- MARK BEACH demoted -- charges would be filed, heads would roll and then silence... business as usual. the cast of characters who legally or illegally seized the guns, drugs, money, evidence, cars and other property - - would never be disciplined...

One lone Internal Affairs Agent Greg Wells, assigned to this daunting task of sorting out the sordid details all by himself...against 25+ members (officers, detectives, sergeants, lieutenants, the commander) of the Metropolitan Police Department's Narcotics Unit totaling countless criminal complaints -- and don't forget -- Agent Wells must process each within the requisite 90 days or they all escape punishment...

Ah, but one thing could save Agent Wells --- the 90 day rule exception, cases presented to the US Attorney for review &/or prosecution -- the 90 day stops until a declination is issued...

JUSTICE will be done or so we thought -- Plan A wait until the 80th+ day, submit all complaints to US Attorney, along with the veiled threat -- DO YOU KNOW how many people will get another trial if these officers are prosecuted? Do you KNOW that Ken WAINSTEIN according to Sgt Dale Sutherland gave his approval? The very same WAINSTEIN that President Bush appointed to the US Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia? DO YOU KNOW HOW MANY NARCOTICS cases are pending that will be dismissed because clearly NO ONE at NARCOTICS can testify to the CHAIN OF EVIDENCE OR CHAIN of Custody? YIKES, gawly -gee--what to do?!?!

Plan B -- let's blame it all on the untrained property clerk and let's ice this cake with words like "Administrative Errors" -- that's would be the new buzz word for NO CHAIN OF CUSTODY, falsified reports, misplaced cash, drugs, vehicles, guns -- ADMINISTRATIVE ERRORS!!!!????

Lets forget that MEMBERS of the Narcotics Branch had unaccounted for guns and drugs -- they might be inclined to sell, use or DON'T SAY IT-- PLANT them on some innocent by-stander.... Like whom?

Gee, only a few days ago, Captain Melvin Gresham's tenants were targeted by these "upstanding" (sarcasms intended) members... they could take some of those unaccounted for drugs and let's say $10K ('cause that's what they told they news media they would find one hour before the raid.) and plant them ... See WTOP report, WJLA

The cover-up -- the thugs masquerading as Narcotics police would plant drugs and money on the premises of 2905 GA AV NW, or one of the occupants, or Captain Gresham should he actually be there...

WHY -- because Captain Gresham refused to accept Asst Attorney Steven Anderson's bribe... and he testified before DOJ about these thugs masquerading as police, who had been "uncover" too long, who had switched to the other side...

INTERESTINGLY enough FOUR (4) MPDC officials cooperated fully with the IAD, US Attorney investigations...and all four have been and some still are being targeted by COMMAND STAFF OF MPDC --

WHY would Chief LANIER Condone this criminal behavior -- 'cause some of the evidence. lack of accountability, corruption falls squarely on the newly promoted shoulders of Chief Ramsey's Protege, Inspector {have no background in investigation, just "uncover -work" (again sarcasm intended)} CATHY LANIER...

WOW -- it all makes sense, and since FOX TV wanted to do a movie about Chief CATHY LANIER, let's have them do the real life story, not the one her hire publicist created....

MAKE THE CALL, DEMAND HEARINGS -- YOU CAN GET A BETTER POLICE DEPARTMENT

CHECK OUT: http://community.myfoxdc.com/blogs/Ten30DC  - CLICK HERE

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Guilty plea in Law Enforcement Computer Misuse

Guilty plea entered in computer misuse
The New Haven Register by William Kaempffer - August 14, 2008

NEW HAVEN — A former Department of Correction employee has pleaded guilty in federal court to accepting cash and gift certificates to expensive restaurants from three corrupt bail bondsmen in exchange for misusing a state computer to help them catch fugitives. James Barone, 48, is the third state employee to be ensnared in the bribery scheme and the ninth person — including three New Haven police officers — to plead guilty to corruption counts. Among them were the three bondsmen, Robert Jacobs, 81, and his sons, Paul and Philip, who for decades used their influence to secure bail customers in Superior Court. Federal prosecutors also say the bondsmen illegally obtained information to help capture bail jumpers. That’s where federal prosecutors say Barone came in. It appears that Barone may have been in the sights of the Federal Bureau of Investigation for some time. He resigned from the Department of Correction in January after nearly 26 years, and just a month after the FBI arrested two court employees who Philip Jacobs helped set up in hopes of a lighter sentence. The U.S. District Court on-line database did not have any record of Barone’s case Wednesday afternoon, and the U.S. Attorney’s office released no other records Wednesday.

Barone worked at the New Haven Correctional Center on Whalley Avenue as a counselor supervisor, DOC spokesman Brian Garnett said Wednesday. He declined further comment, referring questions to prosecutors. Barone pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count of exceeding his authorized access to a state computer, a charge that could land him in prison for up to a year when he is sentenced in November. He could get significantly less. A former judicial marshal who pleaded guilty to providing illegal favors to Philip Jacobs got probation in May, and the two Jacobs sons received four months each, in part because of their cooperation. According to the U.S. Attorney’s office, from at least 2005 through March 2007, Barone used his position at the New Haven Correctional Center to assist the Jacobses by providing them pictures of individuals who failed to appear in Superior Court, and also with inmate information from the Connecticut Online Law Enforcement Communications Teleprocessing system and the FBI’s National Crime Information Center database. NCIC is a computerized index of criminal justice information that is available to federal, state, and local law enforcement and other criminal justice agencies. Usage is restricted to official duties and it is a crime to misuse it.

Last October, Madison Patrol Officer Bernard Durgin Jr. was arrested on state charges for misusing the state law enforcement database to look up information about ex-girlfriends and women he worked with as a security guard at Yale-New Haven Hospital. In March 2007, the FBI went public with a months-long undercover investigation of members of the New Haven Police Department and the bail bondsmen. The net result of the probe was the arrests of two prominent figures: New Haven Lt. William White, a cop of nearly four decades, and Robert Jacobs, who had been a fixture at the Elm Street courthouse for just as long. White got the stiffest sentence, 38 months, for stealing money planted in a sting by the FBI and taking thousands of dollars in bribes from the Jacobs for running down fugitives while on the job. He is serving his sentence in West Virginia. The elder Jacobs got 15 months for paying bribes. Only Philip has so far reported to prison, according to the Bureau of Prisons.

Detective Justen Kasperzyk is serving a 15-month sentence in New Jersey for planting evidence, and Detective Jose Silva has already been released from his three-month stint. Jill D’Antona, a judicial marshal at the Elm Street courthouse, and Cynthia McClendon, a clerk in the public defender’s office, were more minor players. Both have pleaded guilty to taking “gratuities” from the Jacobses in exchange for their help. D’Antona received probation. McClendon has yet to be sentenced. In court Tuesday, Barone admitted that as a gratuity for providing assistance, during the holiday season, the Jacobses over the years gave him gift certificates to expensive restaurants and, in December 2006, Robert Jacobs gave Barone $200 as thanks for the assistance that Barone provided in his official capacity.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Ex-sgt. was in on slay: sources

The New York Daily News by ALISON GENDAR AND JOHN MARZULLI - August 14, 2008

The fatal shooting of a Staten Island jeweler during a bungled robbery attempt was an inside job carried out with the help of a retired NYPD sergeant, law enforcement sources said Thursday. Two Genovese crime family associates and a third hoodlum were arraigned Thursday on federal charges that carry the possibility of the death penalty. But ex-Sgt. Jason Aiello is beyond the reach of the law - he was killed last month in a shootout with cops after escaping from a mental ward. Aiello was victim Louis Antonelli's bodyguard, but on April 29 he betrayed his best friend for a cut of the robbery proceeds, sources said. "The robbery team believed Antonelli would have hundreds of thousands of dollars of jewelry with him, and had been informed that Antonelli would be alone and unarmed," according to court papers filed in Brooklyn Federal Court. Aiello is not named in the documents, but sources said he set up Antonelli. "Aiello was the only one who knew where Antonelli was that day," said a police source. Federal prosecutors said mob associates Christopher Prince and Anthony Pica acted as lookouts while alleged gunman Charles Santiago ambushed the victim. The plan was not to kill Antonelli, only scare him, but Santiago opened fire, sources said. An alleged fourth accomplice, getaway driver Joseph Gencarelli, is cooperating with authorities. The crew commits robberies, burglaries and other crimes under the protection of the Mafia, said prosecutor John Buretta. "Mr. Antonelli's death reminds us that the Mafia continues to murder in order to make money," said Brooklyn U.S. Attorney Benton Campbell. Prince, 25; Pica, 29, and Santiago, 25, pleaded not guilty and were held without bail. Investigators suspected Aiello from the start because he wasn't carrying a gun. He suffered an apparent nervous breakdown last month from the strain of the probe. Aiello's attorney did not return a call for comment. jmarzulli@nydailynews.com

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Former Boston Cop Sentenced to 135 Months

Former Boston Police Officer JOSE ANTONIO ORTIZ, 46, formerly of Salem, Massachusetts, was sentenced by Judge Rya Zobel to 135 months imprisonment - August 13, 2008

Former Boston Police Officer was sentenced today to over eleven years in federal prison in connection with his attempt to extort $265,000 from a man on behalf of Colombian drug dealers. United States Attorney Michael J. Sullivan, Warren T. Bamford, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation - Boston Field Division and Police Commissioner Edward Davis of the Boston Police Department, announced today that JOSE ANTONIO ORTIZ, 46, formerly of Salem, Massachusetts, was sentenced by Judge Rya Zobel to 135 months imprisonment to be followed by 5 years of supervised release, on charges of conspiracy to distribute cocaine, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, conspiracy to commit extortion and attempted extortion. U.S. Attorney Sullivan said, Of all our recent cases combating police corruption, this was among the most egregious. To have a uniformed officer, carrying his badge and weapon, extort money on behalf of a Colombian drug ring cuts at the heart of our system of justice. It is only through vigorous investigations and prosecutions like this that we assure the public that rogue officers like Ortiz will not only lose their badge and uniform, but end up in federal prison.

Documents filed in early May 2007, and testimony at a hearing on May 9, 2007, revealed that in late August 2006, ORTIZ threatened the life of a man whom ORTIZ believed to be responsible for a drug deal which had gone bad. ORTIZ told the man that he worked with two drug dealers and a number of Colombians who had lost money on a narcotics transaction and he was there to collect the debt. ORTIZ told the man that he knew everything about him and his family, and showed the man a photograph he had of him. ORTIZ also threatened to harm an associate of the man if he failed to pay the drug debt owed. In a subsequent recorded conversation, ORTIZ told the man that he owed $265,000. Over a period of several months, as a result of the threats the man paid ORTIZ $6,000 in cash. Video recordings of the meetings made by the FBI ├»¿½ reveal ORTIZ stuffing wads of cash in the pockets of his police uniform. Ultimately, at the direction of law enforcement, the man offered to pay-off his alleged debt with 3 kilograms of cocaine and $5,000. In a subsequent recorded meeting, ORTIZ demanded more; ORTIZ insisted on 4 kilograms of cocaine and a total of $10,000. On May 2, 2007, an team of federal agents arrested ORTIZ at a parking lot in Revere, where ORTIZ was scheduled to rendezvous with the man and two of the drug dealers. ORTIZ appeared at the meeting armed and in his Boston Police Department uniform. 

Before his arrest, ORTIZ was shown the four kilograms of cocaine, and took possession of the keys to the car in which the cocaine and $4,000 in cash were concealed. In an interview shortly after his arrest, ORTIZ admitted that he had been sent by a drug dealer to collect a drug debt, and that he had obtained $6,000 in payments. Testimony at the May 9th hearing also revealed that a search of ORTIZ Boston Police Department lockers after his arrest resulted in the seizure of more than $7,000 in cash. Of the cash recovered from ORTIZ locker, $700 were bills that had been provided by the victim to ORTIZ in payment of the drug debt. ORITIZ sentencing comes after a series of successful public corruption investigations and prosecutions of officers in the Boston Police Department. Former Officer Roberto Pulido was convicted in connection with protecting 140 kilograms of cocaine in a sting operation and sentenced to 26 years in prison on May 16, 2008. Former Officer Nelson Carrasquillo was sentenced to 18 years incarceration on March 10, 2008 in connection with the same cocaine protection operation. Former Officer Carlos Pizarro was sentenced to 13 years incarceration on December 12, 2007 for his role in protecting 40 kilograms of cocaine in that case. 

Former Officer Edgardo Rodriguez was convicted of steroid distribution in connection with Pulido and obstruction of justice charges; he was sentenced to just over one year in prison on February 12, 2008. Two non-law enforcement associates of Pulido have also been convicted in connection with the corruption investigation: Matthew West was convicted on cocaine distribution charges and sentenced to 15 years incarceration on October 10, 2007; Jose Tito Alvarez a close associate of Pulido was sentenced to two years incarceration on a related civil rights violation on July 23, 2008. The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation - Boston Field Division in conjunction with the Boston Police Department Anti-Corruption Unit. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John T. McNeil in Sullivanï Public Corruption and Special Prosecutions Unit.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Police union chief denies brutality claim

The Journal News by Will David - August 6, 2008

YONKERS - The president of the city's police union yesterday denied claims by a 26-year-old city man that he was hunted down and beaten by police investigating a bar brawl involving injured off-duty police officers two years ago. Detective Eddie Armour said Rui Florim, who filed a $20 million lawsuit against the city, is a member of a Yonkers street gang known as the Hoover Boys and was injured during his arrest in July 2006 because he fought with on-duty plainclothes officers trying to arrest him. "Our contention is that he violently tried to resist arrest," Armour said. Jonathan Lovett, Florim's lawyer, filed a complaint in U.S. District Court in White Plains alleging the police planned an attack on Florim, deprived him of his civil rights and denied him access to a lawyer for several days after his arrest. Florim says police pulled him out of a car his girlfriend was driving and beat him, after he left his job at a restaurant in Hartsdale. Asked during a news conference held in the union office whether Florim was beaten by arresting police as retaliation for the injured officers, Armour replied, "We don't engage in payback. Those officers went there with the specific purpose to place Rui Florim in custody." On May 19, several off-duty Yonkers officers were at the Tyrone House, a popular waterfront bar on Main Street, when they became involved in a fight with Florim's group. During the incident, Officer Joseph Licht was dragged out of the bar, hit in the head with a golf club and his wallet was stolen, police said. Florim and Alex Millan were seen on videotape re-enacting how Licht was beaten, Armour said, and using his credit card to buy gas and other items. Also injured were off-duty officers Jesus Padilla and Stefano Rissdorfer. Padilla was kicked in the face and so was Rissdorfer, who required five surgeries to his repair his mouth.

Lucian Chalfen, a spokesman for Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore, said Florim has a pending misdemeanor assault case in connection with the beating of the officers. Chalfen said Florim's co-defendants - Andrew Birkenfeld, then 21, and Juan Faneytt, then 22 - pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault in the case. Millan is due in court tomorrow for a felony hearing on a charge of grand larceny in connection with the theft of Licht's wallet. "These are not great guys," said police Commissioner Edmund Hartnett. Hartnett, who was not commissioner at the time, said that during Florim's press conference, Lovett did not say some defendants pleaded guilty, several officers were injured and Licht was hit in the head with a golf club. "Luckily, he (Licht) was not killed when he was hit in the head with a golf club," said Hartnett noting the officer was out of work for a month. Florim has been a member of the Hoover Boys since 2001, Armour said. He has been arrested 10 times in Yonkers, Eastchester and New Rochelle. A sneaker with Licht's blood on it was found in Florim's house when police went there to execute a search warrant, Armour said. Florim's girlfriend told police he was involved in the fight as did an independent witness who was in the bar and is not a police officer, Armour said.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Fiends armed with badge of shame

The New York Daily News by ALISON GENDAR - DAILY NEWS POLICE BUREAU CHIEF - August 12, 2008

Fake badges were allegedly obtained by felons, including accused murderer Darryl Littlejohn.
It's the dis-honor roll. Accused murderer Darryl Littlejohn. Gunpoint robber Israel Suarez. Molester Darryl Rich.


Those are just some of the criminals who graduated from a bounty hunter school accused of aiding and abetting felons by putting fake NYPD and federal badges in their hands. Students of U.S. Recovery Bureau schools paid $860 to learn how to wield a baton and subdue "fugitives" with pepper spray and cuffs. They were also equipped with realistic-looking badges - design knockoffs of shields from the Police Department and various federal agencies. "The badge has been a symbol of the lawman for hundreds of years," said John Ulianko, regional director for the Federal Protective Service, which helped expose the U.S. Recovery Bureau badge mill. "People see a badge and they think, this person is here to help. Instead, fake badges are landing in the hands of criminals. This school is just a tiny tip of the problem," said Ulianko, whose agency safeguards federal buildings. When his agents and the NYPD's police impersonation squad busted the U.S. Recovery Bureau's founders last month, they seized lists of the school's graduates - a real-life rogues' gallery. There was Littlejohn, also known as Johnny Handsome, an ex-con later accused of raping and killing graduate student Imette St. Guillen in 2006.

Littlejohn met St. Guillen at a Manhattan bar where he worked as a bouncer. He was hired because the owners bought his story that he was a "fugitive enforcement agent" with federal training and a shiny badge. He also posed as a law enforcer on Oct. 19, 2005, when he allegedly kidnapped a 19-year-old York College student as she walked home in Queens. The Manhattan U.S. attorney's office charged school founders Ralph Rios and Robert Neves, an ex-NYPD detective, with conspiring to dole out the phony badges at their schools in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Passaic, N.J. Of the schools' 943 graduates, 78 were convicted felons, authorities said. One diploma recipient was Suarez, a professional "bounty hunter" who robbed New Jersey gas stations at gunpoint in his spare time. Then there was Rich, of Jamaica, Queens, who graduated from the U.S. Recovery Bureau in spite of a 1995 sodomy arrest. Another happy customer was Michael Quinones of Brooklyn, who was busted in 2006 after he manhandled a customer at the clothing warehouse where he worked security. "You can't do this to me! I just came into the store," the hapless customer said as Quinones grabbed him around the neck and slammed him against a gate. "I can do whatever I want," Quinones said, according to court records, as he lifted his shirt to display a "Fugitive Recovery Bureau" badge and what the victim thought was a gun. "I am a f---ing cop!" agendar@nydailynews.com

Monday, August 11, 2008

Dallas cop arrested in vehicle shooting

The Dallas Morning News by Tanya Eiserer - July 10, 2008

DALLAS — A Dallas police officer was arrested Wednesday, after authorities identified him as the man who shot at a woman's vehicle in Garland. Senior Cpl. Daniel Hageman, who was hired in 2001, is charged with deadly conduct in the incident, a third-degree felony. Cpl. Hageman turned himself in to Garland police about 6 p.m. Wednesday. Dallas police have placed Cpl. Hageman on administrative leave pending an investigation by the department's Internal Affairs Division, according to a news release. Garland police Officer Joe Harn, a department spokesman, said the incident happened about 11:30 p.m. May 9 in the area of LBJ Freeway and Centerville Road. A woman and her friend were driving down the road when they noticed two speeding cars approaching from behind, Officer Harn said. One of the cars moved into the lane to the right of her, and it appeared that the man inside was yelling at them. "They said he appeared to be mad," Officer Harn said. "The driver said she continued to drive straight and tried not to look at him." They told police that the man pointed a gun at them before they heard what sounded like gunshots. Her passenger rear tire went flat, Officer Harn said. The motorist pulled to the side of the road and called authorities. "Officers see what they think is a bullet hole in the tire," Officer Harn said. "They got a good description of the car and a license plate." Police got a driver's license photo of the person thought to be driving the car and showed it to the passenger in the car that was shot at. She identified Cpl. Hageman, Officer Harn said. Garland police said they did not realize the shooter was a police officer until after a warrant for his arrest was issued in mid-June. Cpl. Hageman is assigned to Dallas' southeast patrol division.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

FEDS TURN UP HEAT ON GOTTI-CASE 'DIRTY COP'

The New York Post by STEFANIE COHEN, LARRY CELONA and KATI CORNELL - August 7, 2008

A former NYPD detective is under investigation by the FBI for his alleged role in a mob hit ordered by John "Junior" Gotti and is expected to face federal charges, The Post has learned. Besides ratting out his boyhood pal Gotti, mob turncoat John Alite fingered retired cop Phil Baroni, 56 for being in a getaway car and helping dispose of the body of coke pusher George Grosso, a source said. Grosso was shot in the back of the head on Dec. 20, 1988. At the time, Baroni was getting a generous disability pension from the NYPD. "[They] just took him out of the car and dumped him on the side of the road" in Flushing Meadow Park, the source said. The murder is one of three rub- outs detailed in an indictment leveled against Gotti, 44, who was arrested Tuesday. Baroni joined the NYPD in 1975 and worked in the 104th Precinct in Queens. He was promoted to detective in 1985, and retired in 1986 - receiving three-quarters of his final salary - because of a back injury.

The source remembers Baroni as "very cocky and "very explosive." He added, "He had a short fuse" and "no sense of humor." Baroni often worked out and lifted weights and considered himself "God's gift to women," according to the source. Messages left for Baroni were not returned, nor were calls to his wife. Sources said Baroni grew up with Gambino associate Alite, 45, in Queens, and the two later lived blocks from each other in Cherry Hill, NJ. Alite was best friends with Gotti when they were in their 20s, and is responsible for introducing Baroni to his mob-scion pal, other sources said. "He's a dirty cop. He was providing information to the family, dealing coke, doing armed robberies with other members of the family," another law-enforcement source said. And Baroni isn't the only cop the feds have eyed. A Suffolk County officer involved in the Grosso hit is also being probed, sources said. Additional reporting by Philip Messing stefanie.cohen@nypost.com

Friday, August 8, 2008

Activists Want Special Prosecutor for Police Abuse

by Arun Venugopal

NEW YORK, NY August 06, 2008 —Civil rights activists called for a crackdown on police misconduct today at rally outside police headquarters. The protest comes after a videotape surfaced showing an officer pushing a cyclist off his bike.
The video contradicts the officer's sworn statement, claiming the cyclist tried to run him down. No charges have been filed against the officer. Attorney Norman Siegel says it's time for Gov. David Paterson to create a special prosecutor's office to investigate police corruption and abuse.

SIEGEL: I've had numerous conversations with David Paterson about this issue. He supports what we're calling for. And now, David, you've got the power.

REPORTER: According to Siegel, the previous office of the state prosecutor only investigated police corruption.
Gov. Mario Cuomo closed the special prosecutors office in the early 90s. No comment yet from Paterson's office.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

FEDS TURN UP HEAT ON GOTTI-CASE 'DIRTY COP'
The New York Post by STEFANIE COHEN, LARRY CELONA and KATI CORNELL - August 7, 2008

A former NYPD detective is under investigation by the FBI for his alleged role in a mob hit ordered by John "Junior" Gotti and is expected to face federal charges, The Post has learned. Besides ratting out his boyhood pal Gotti, mob turncoat John Alite fingered retired cop Phil Baroni, 56 for being in a getaway car and helping dispose of the body of coke pusher George Grosso, a source said. Grosso was shot in the back of the head on Dec. 20, 1988. At the time, Baroni was getting a generous disability pension from the NYPD."[They] just took him out of the car and dumped him on the side of the road" in Flushing Meadow Park, the source said. The murder is one of three rub- outs detailed in an indictment leveled against Gotti, 44, who was arrested Tuesday. Baroni joined the NYPD in 1975 and worked in the 104th Precinct in Queens. He was promoted to detective in 1985, and retired in 1986 - receiving three-quarters of his final salary - because of a back injury. 

The source remembers Baroni as "very cocky and "very explosive." He added, "He had a short fuse" and "no sense of humor." Baroni often worked out and lifted weights and considered himself "God's gift to women," according to the source. Messages left for Baroni were not returned, nor were calls to his wife. Sources said Baroni grew up with Gambino associate Alite, 45, in Queens, and the two later lived blocks from each other in Cherry Hill, NJ. Alite was best friends with Gotti when they were in their 20s, and is responsible for introducing Baroni to his mob-scion pal, other sources said. "He's a dirty cop. He was providing information to the family, dealing coke, doing armed robberies with other members of the family," another law-enforcement source said. And Baroni isn't the only cop the feds have eyed. A Suffolk County officer involved in the Grosso hit is also being probed, sources said.  Additional reporting by Philip Messing stefanie.cohen@nypost.com

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

PIMP COP GETS 3½ YEARS

The New York Post by IKIMULISA LIVINGSTON - August 5, 2008

An NYPD cop and his madam girlfriend were sentenced to 3½ years behind bars yesterday for pimping out a teenage girl in Queens. Disgraced former Detective Wayne Taylor, 36, and Zalika "Mommy Z" Brown, 29, pleaded guilty last month to attempted kidnapping in the case involving a 13-year-old runaway. She told cops the couple bought her from another pimp for $500 and forced her to turn tricks in clubs and at parties. "There's no question [Taylor] exercised poor judgment and that led to today," said the ex-officer's lawyer, Stephen Drummond. Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said, "Instead of acting like a police officer - as Taylor was at the time - he admittedly took advantage of the child and, along with his co-defendant, forced her into prostitution."

Monday, August 4, 2008

Commander wired to snag drug-rap cop

The New York Daily News by JOHN MARZULLI - August 3, 2008

A top cop went undercover to catch one of his own. In what may have been an unprecedented technique to catch a Brooklyn detective suspected of corruption, a detective commander wore a wire to secretly tape conversations with the gumshoe in their precinct's squad room, the Daily News has learned. Sgt. Robert Kelly, the former head of the 90th Precinct detective squad in Williamsburg, became an undercover in his own office at the direction of the FBI agents who were investigating Detective Luis Batista for alleged illicit ties to a violent drug gang. "Sgt. Kelly wore a hidden audio recorder and engaged Detective Batista in conversation in an attempt to get him to make incriminating statements," said papers filed in Brooklyn Federal Court.

"The implications of having an undercover officer not just inside the detective squad, but as Batista's commanding officer, are enormous," the papers state. It apparently wasn't a stretch for Kelly, who had previously worked in the police Internal Affairs Bureau. Batista's lawyer, however, called the move shocking. "It's unprecedented that a commanding officer of a detective squad would engage in this. It's scary stuff," said James Moschella, who represents thousands of NYPD detectives, lieutenants and captains. Kelly has since been handsomely rewarded with a pay raise and assigned to the prestigious Joint Terrorism Task Force, said Moschella. The feds charged Batista this year with conspiring to sell drugs and tipping off dealers. The investigation also uncovered two IAB sergeants - Henry Conde and William Valerio - who have been charged with obstructing the probe. Although Kelly has profited from being an informant, he didn't get the goods on Batista.  jmarzulli@nydailynews.com

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Officers Breaking the Law

New York's Video Vigilante, Scourge of Parking Enforcers
'Jimmy Justice' Posts Images of Officers Breaking the Law
The Washington Post by Keith B. Richburg, Staff Writer - August 3, 2008

NEW YORK -- He calls himself "Jimmy Justice," a self-styled "cop-arazzi," armed only with a video camera as he prowls the streets of New York looking for law enforcement officers who are breaking the law. His targets are illegally parked city government vehicles -- particularly cars of traffic cops blocking bus stops, sitting in "no parking" zones or double-parked. Cop cars blocking fire hydrants make him particularly incensed. "Something like that is just despicable," Jimmy fumed, pointing to a police enforcement vehicle parked next to a fire hydrant on 33rd Street on Manhattan's West Side on a muggy July afternoon. "They're never allowed to block a fire hydrant -- but they do it." He posts his best videos on YouTube and sends regular e-mail to the union representing the city's traffic enforcement agents, pointing out the most egregious parking offenses. And he has gotten results, he said, with some parking enforcers being fined because of his videos. "I'm using a video camera as a weapon," he said. "I believe a video does not lie."

He is a fairly big, stocky guy, and with his brusque and hectoring manner, he has been described as obnoxious, self-righteous and worse. "He acts like an adolescent," said James Huntley, the president of the traffic enforcers union. "I believe he's a big kid, or he wouldn't go around intimidating people who are just doing their job." But in the digital age, Jimmy Justice represents a new kind of citizen vigilante at a time, particularly in New York, when amateur videos are increasingly being used to hold law enforcers to account and shine a public spotlight on their excesses. Within the past week, two videos have surfaced showing what appears to be police misconduct in New York. In one video, viewed more than 1 million times on YouTube, a police officer is seen charging a bicyclist and knocking him to the ground during a July 25 group bicycle ride through Times Square -- despite the officer's sworn complaint that the cyclist tried to run him down. A few days later, a separate video appeared, showing another police officer apparently swinging a baton and beating a handcuffed suspect lying on the ground during a July 4 arrest.

The police department has been stung by the incidents, and the officers involved have had their badges and guns taken away while the department investigates. Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said there will soon be a way for people with videos of crimes -- and incidents of police misconduct -- to send them directly to the police through 911. In the eyes of civil libertarians and others who have long complained about police excesses under New York's "zero tolerance" policy, the increasingly common use of video by ordinary citizens has started to shift the balance away from law enforcement officials in questions of official misconduct. "I think the proliferation of video technology does, in some sense, level the playing field," said Donna Lieberman, executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union. "When we think about the citizen eyewitnesses that have brought to light some egregious police conduct that no one would have believed, the benefit is unquestionable." However, the police union cautions that videos do not always give the entire picture, and officers worry about a flood of citizen videos by people who might not understand that police work is sometimes a messy business.

"The use of force sometimes looks violent," said Patrick Lynch, president of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association. "Pieces of video don't tell the whole story." With the police commissioner openly asking for citizen videos, Lynch said, "he's going to have to be very careful not to bow to public pressure and not bow to emotion." Jimmy Justice -- a pseudonym he chose because it echoes "Give me justice" -- believes all residents of New York should be digitally armed and ready for action. "I think everyone should get a video camera," he said. "Or, if you have to get a new cellphone, get one with a video function." And when people get video of cops behaving badly, he said, "send it in to your local authorities. Or post it on YouTube or other video-sharing sites." He might sound obsessed. But Jimmy insists he is just a normal guy from Brooklyn, with a job, a girlfriend, a social life and hobbies, including playing guitar in a band. Jimmy Justice's crusade, he said, is against what he calls the city's double standard on parking. Uniformed agents relentlessly -- some say ruthlessly -- enforce parking rules in a city where spaces are scarce, but they violate those same rules when on personal business, such as stopping for lunch or running errands. "You can call it a vendetta if you want, because that's what it is," Jimmy said. "It's about the city's predatory policy of ticketing to raise revenue." When traffic enforcers park illegally, he said, "it's an unfair double standard."

Sometimes it gets ugly out there. In the two years since he began making his videos, Jimmy said, he has been threatened, punched and spit on, and has had cameras smashed to the ground. He said he does not disclose his real name because he fears retaliation by someone whom he has made an unwilling YouTube star. And Jimmy admits that he occasionally crosses the line, sometimes verbally berating traffic enforcers. "You ought to be ashamed of yourself!" he shouts in a video at one enforcer who was in a restaurant buying lunch while her car was parked next to a fire hydrant -- as firetrucks arrived outside for an emergency. "Are you on drugs?" Jimmy shouts at her. "I definitely try to pick it up when the camera is on," he conceded. "I want to make entertaining videos." And that is precisely what infuriates Huntley, president of Communications Workers of America Local 1182, which represents the city's 2,500 traffic enforcement agents and sanitation workers. "Sometimes we do have to make U-turns. Sometimes we do have to park here and there," Huntley said. "This man wants to glorify himself and get some ratings." Huntley said he is more concerned about traffic agents facing harassment and assaults in the streets for simply doing their jobs. In April, Gov. David A. Paterson signed a new law that makes an assault on a traffic enforcement agent a felony punishable by up to seven years in prison. "We can have him arrested for menacing or stalking," Huntley said of Jimmy, signaling a possible new confrontation in the streets. "For too long, we've been abused by the public and the media. We're not going to be a punching bag anymore in New York City."

Saturday, August 2, 2008

New Orleanians upset with corrupt police officers

New Orleanians upset with corrupt police officers
By Robert L. Davis - July 8, 2008

Police officers chased another police officer! Another NOPD officer receives slap on the wrist? When will New Orleanians make a change?

My telephone rang off the hook yesterday and my email box was overloaded as many friends and fellow authors informed me that yet another New Orleans police officer is in trouble. Actual this story involves three officers.

Many are beginning to validate my claim for years that New Orleans has one of the most corrupt police units in America, and quite possibly the world!

This time we have an officer refusing to stop when driving to work, driving to work at a speed of 90 mph! Apparently two police officers observed New Orleans Police Officer Donyell Sanchell, 38, a four year veteran of the force, speeding in his pickup truck at 90 mph in a 50 mph speed zone. Officer Sanchell later stopped, hit one of the officers with his vehicle, and continued to his unit, the first district police station.

The officers then chased Officer Sanchell to the police station where he was assigned, and a big commotion insued, with supervisors and rank officers getting involved. It's alleged that Mr. Sanchell then slapped one of the officers!

What was his punishment? A summons and a few citations!

This morning, most of the radio shows were receiving many calls from irate citizens complaining how that if it was a common citizen, they woud have been jailed and charged with a state crime, not to mention possibly being beaten by other officers!

( First, all are innocent until proven guilty )

My Take:

First, I must resist the urge to say to many New Orleanians, "I told you so". This stuff has being going on for years! Believe me, as a former NOPD officer, I was guilty of corruption on many occasions in the 70's when I served! It's an epidemic in this city and many of the local officials and police officials refuse to correct the problem. You know why, it's because many of them are corrupt as well! They enjoy many of the "perks" just like this officer did.

Google NOPD Officer Len Davis, convicted of placing a "hit" on a young female New Orleanian, and succeeding. Or google Antoinette Franks, the first police officer, a female no less, that murdered another police officer! You think this is a coincidence, that two NOPD police officers achieved such unique status? No coincidence! They were taught, trained, and incubated to become rogue cops!

When I served, I "never" even heard of an officer being issued a ticket. And yes, I would have never issued an officer a citation as well! It was just something that we all understood never to contemplate. It was called, the blue wall of silence!

Within one week of graduating from the New Orleans Police Academy, I was taught all the corruption tactics by other officers. And if you didn't cooperate, they will blacklist you. No officer would want to ride with you, befriend you, or a call for backup would be slow coming, and you would be unwanted on the force in general.

Having said that, that's precisely why I wrote COP OUT and Legal Minds. I wrote COP OUT to "admit" I was a corrupt officer and " begged "my fellow New Orleanians to forgive me! In my book, I tell all, including the crimes of other officers. I am extremely sorry that I didn't have the guts to report them, hence the name of my book, COP OUT!

I then wrote Legal Minds as a small token of my repentance and sorrow...by revealing ALL the unfair secrets, tactics, and procedures of rogue cops. To this day, as I travel across the United States speaking about crime and corruption, in my heart, I still carry the dishonor of being a corrupt police officer. It wasn't just my dishonor to the badge, but my oath to the people! Without my speaking out about this subject, and my newfound faith in God, I probably would have committed suicide by now! My crusade keeps me sane !

I really feel sorrow for my fellow New Orleanians. As I wrote in my books, one may be more apt to be a victim of a police officer in New Orleans than a common criminal! The police force is infested with rogue cops. And guess what, I've sent five certified letters to the chief, asstistant chief, academy supervisors, and others requesting to give a speech to the academy to admonish future recruits about the dangers of crime and corruption. None have written me back!

I'm invited to other venues and other cities, but not New Orleans. Why? I feel I may have been blacklisted! I would take it that if they were serious about this problem, then an ex- corrupt police officer who has "falling" might benefit new recruits. It might be a start.

This coming Friday I will appear on an international show to discuss police crimes and corruption, and I'll certainly be dealing with New Orleans. They may blacklist me, but only there, not any place else!

My fellow New Orleanians, protest this force, before you or your love ones meet a bad New Orleans cop!

Oh, by the way, I don't profit from my insane past. I'm happy to report that profits from COP OUT are donated to The St. Jude Childrens Hospital, Crime Stoppers, American Federation for the Blind, The American Red Cross, The Stop Rape Crisis Center, The Prevent Child Abuse Center, and Police foundations.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Cop by day, drug lord by night

Whats wrong with a little moonlighting?
Story from the Cleveland Metro blog, Posted (justsick) on May 26, 2008

Cop by day, drug lord by night, sounds about right. This fool even had his mother involved in his operation. Why did he do it? He told the judge he was just being stupid. I guess that sounds a bit better than just being greedy and corrupt.

Akron -Former Cleveland police officer Zvonko Sarlog #2343, police officer, 2nd district, Cleveland, was sentenced to 10 years in prison Wednesday (2/2008)for moonlighting as a drug trafficker while wearing the badge. A contrite Sarlog told U.S. District Judge David Dowd during his sentencing hearing that his actions were born of “stupidity, naivety, and foolishness.” The six-year police veteran also said he feared imprisonment because of his law enforcement past. Sarlog, 37, was arrested in August after a federal investigation exposed his role in a drug ring that brought cocaine and marijuana to Northeast Ohio. Sarlog served as a bagman and coordinator for ring leader and longtime friend Ljubomir Rkman. Federal prosecutors originally asked Dowd to give Sarlog between 12 and 15 years because the officer breached the public’s trust. “He’s the only person in the conspiracy who raised his hand and swore to uphold the law,” said U.S. Assistant Attorney Robert Patton.

Dowd, however, gave Sarlog the mandatory minimum of 10 years, mostly because Rkman received a five-year sentence after a plea bargain. Five other co-defendants received sentences between one and four years after plea deals. Sarlog’s expressions of remorse and shame to Dowd were a far cry from the roguish rhetoric Sarlog used as a drug dealer. During Wednesday’s hearing, prosecutors — in an effort to demonstrate Sarlog’s work as a lieutenant in the ring — played several phone conversations during which Sarlog nervously bossed around his drug-trafficking associates. Those underlings included his mother Stefanija. After the woman failed to successfully deliver money to a drug courier, Sarlog became agitated and ordered her to try again. “You go and do it,” he said sternly in a phone conversation recorded by investigators. Stefanija Sarlog, 60, of Parma, was never charged in the conspiracy. Zvonko Sarlog bought a house across the street from his mother’s house and planned to use it as a stash house, according to prosecutors. FBI Special Agent Brian Young also testified that Sarlog once displayed a gun to an undercover agent and boasted “I run this [expletive]. Over time you’ll see what I’m all about.”