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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Different Rules for Different People

Investigation finds MA State Trooper covered-up crash details for ex-trooper…  

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Selective Sex Abuse Justice

The selective justice of Charles Hynes 
The New York Daily News by Arnold Kriss  -  OPINION  -  June 6, 2012 
His only duty should be to the victims 

Obstructing Justice and Speeding Tickets

Police accused of conspiracy in woman's speeding ticket dismissal 
The Los Angeles Times by Matt Stevens  -  June 5, 2012
 A Garden Grove officer allegedly tried to impress the woman by promising he could have her citation dismissed, and prosecutors say a Huntington Beach officer helped him do so. 

Judge Says He Was Assaulted By Cop

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Prosecutor-Lawyer Takes Swing At Cop During Traffic Stop

Cop's Weapon Prompted Sex Arrest

Prosecutor-Lawyers Held Boozy Bash in Evidence Room

Bronx prosecutors held boozy bash in main ticket-fixing evidence room: sources 
The New York Post by Kirstan Conley and Jeane MacIntosh  -  June 4, 2012

A rowdy group of Bronx prosecutors took over the main evidence room in the NYPD ticket-fixing scandal — drinking and partying among the piles of tapes and files before a Yankee game, The Post has learned. About 40 people, including prosecutors and their civilian guests, milled around room 617 during the boozy May 23 bash at the Bronx District Attorney’s Office, where, sources said, Internal Affairs probers keep the mountain of wiretaps and documents for DA Robert Johnson’s sweeping ticket-fixing case against 16 NYPD cops and five civilians. “It could damage the whole ticket-fixing case,” a source who witnessed the revelry told The Post. “If even one civilian got through the door, it’s a problem. Evidence must be safeguarded in a secure location.” The door to room 617 is usually locked and bears a sign that reads: “No Unauthorized Entry.” It’s unclear whether someone in IAB granted the city lawyers access or whether someone in the DA’s Office had the key. During its ticket-fixing probe, IAB secretly recorded a staggering 139,000 phone calls and intercepted 311,000 text messages and e-mails. The judge in the case has said there are also an estimated 20,000 pages of grand-jury minutes and testimony. “Evidence is everywhere in there, stacked in boxes, floor to ceiling,” one source said of room 617. “It’s the field office for Bronx IAB.” “The reason this is a problem is that the room is supposed to be locked 24/7.” “This will raise questions. This is no way to run an investigation. The Bronx DA will have to admit it happened . . . There were too many people, too many witnesses [not to].” The Wednesday night party — a warm-up for that evening’s Bronx DA Night at Yankee Stadium — started at the Bronx’s DA’s sixth floor reception area, which had been set up as a bar, sources said. But prosecutors, their girlfriends and other guests were soon milling in and out of room 617, a witness said. “They were all right there, next to the evidence,” the witness said. A spokesman for DA Johnson confirmed the pre-game festivities but insisted the party didn’t compromise evidence. “Present and former staff members and their families gathered at the office prior to attending a Yankees game,” said DA spokesman Steve Reed. “They conducted themselves maturely and did nothing to compromise the work of the office.” One source scoffed at the notion that “families” were included in the boozy blowout and said there were no kids in sight. “If your family includes a stable of hot women, then I guess you could call it a ‘family’ event,” the source said. With the drinks free-flowing, several partygoers even bailed on the Yankee game. “Most never made it to the game. It’s always that good of a party,” one source said. It’s unclear whether IAB investigators or detectives and rank-and-file NYPD cops attended the festivities. But one law-enforcement source heard cops discussing the party ahead of time. “I heard people joking that this party was going on, and that we should go after them,” the source said. 

Friday, June 1, 2012

Video Shows Lies, Cop Indicted on Perjury, Misconduct Charges

Cop indicted on perjury, misconduct charges after video shows he lied 
The New York Post by Jose Martinez  -  May 31, 2012

Surveillance video shows the officer did not have to jump out of the way of the moving car. The video didn't lie, but this cop allegedly did - and now he's in big trouble. Officer Diego Palacios has been indicted on felony charges by a Brooklyn grand jury after a surveillance video exposed a sham that landed an innocent man in jail for three days. Palacios was slapped with official misconduct, perjury and offering a false instrument charges for arresting John Hockenjos in a case built prosecutors say was built on lies. "My client never should have been put in a position where he had to spend a single second in jail," said Craig Newman, a defense lawyer who represented Hockenjos on the reckless endangerment charge that got tossed in March. The 55-year-old Bensonhurst man was going home to watch the Super Bowl on Feb. 5 when he ended up in jail for allegedly driving his sedan "at a high rate of speed" that supposedly caused the cop to leap for his life. But the silent video shows Hockenjos slowly creeping his car into the driveway while Palacios doesn't budge. Cops had been called to the home over a long-running property dispute between Hockenjos and neighbor Argo Paumere. "Thank God my client had that video," Newman said. A defense lawyer for Palacios said the eight-year NYPD veteran maintains "100%" that Hockenjos put him in jeopardy when he pulled into the driveway. "We are confident he will be exonerated and continue in the job that he cares about and loves so much," said Arthur Aidala. Hockenjos could not be reached for comment. But Newman said the ordeal has shredded the city transit worker's trust in police. "I know he and his wife are pleased with this result," Newman said. "But they're still living in fear and anxiety that is simple as just being afraid to call 911."

Police Commissioner Pushed District Attorney to File Charges

Ray’s arm-twist 
The New York Post by Jamie Schram, Laura Italiano and Dan Mangan  - June 1, 2012

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly pressured Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance Jr. into charging the confessed killer of Etan Patz — even though the top prosecutor wanted more evidence, sources told The Post yesterday. “Vance did not want an arrest,” said a source familiar with the murder case against bipolar schizophrenic Pedro Hernandez, who copped to the 1979 crime last week. “Kelly pushed, insisted, but Vance wanted time to investigate,” the source said. “He wanted to hold him in a safe place and evaluate the guy while they investigated.” Hernandez was arrested on May 24 after admitting during interrogation that he strangled 6-year-old Etan in the SoHo bodega where he worked as a stockboy. Vance signed off on the criminal complaint, but was noticeably absent from Kelly’s press conference announcing the charges. He spoke publicly about the investigation for the first time yesterday, but refused to say how confident he is that Hernandez is the killer. “Not that I’m afraid to answer it, but it’s really premature for me to answer it at this time,” Vance said. He also said that in solving cold cases such as the Patz murder, “You need to make sure that accountability is levied on the right person. Now our task is to make sure justice is brought.” A spokeswoman for Vance denied there’s a rift with Kelly. “That is absolutely not true,” said Erin Duggan. Etan’s disappearance had been one of New York’s biggest mysteries for 33 years. Investigators long believed he fell victim to a neighborhood pedophile, José Ramos, who in 2004 was held liable in a civil case. Since Hernandez’s arrest, Kelly has strongly stated that police are convinced he’s Etan’s killer. But Vance yesterday refused to say whether Hernandez’s arrest effectively clears Ramos and former SoHo handyman Othniel Miller, whose basement workspace was dug up by investigators in late April. Vance is joined in his skepticism by FBI officials in New York and Washington who have concerns about going forward with the case. They question the validity of Hernandez’s confession and whether it would stand up in court without additional evidence backing it up, sources said. Federal agents who worked on the case also complained about being left out by the NYPD as Kelly rushed to charge Hernandez by the anniversary of Etan’s disappearance on May 25, sources said. Sources have told The Post that Hernandez provided detectives with “intimate details” that were never released to the public. Hernandez — who suffers from auditory and visual hallucinations, according to his lawyer — remains in custody at Bellevue Hospital’s psych ward, where he is undergoing court-ordered psychiatric evaluation. Additional reporting by Larry Celona and Josh Margolin 

Three Officers Charged With Falsifying Police Report

3 Fort Lauderdale Police Officers Charged With Falsifying Police Report, Testimony 
NBC Miami by Edward B. Colby  -  May 31, 2012
The officers crashed with a burglary suspect trying to flee in Nov. 2009, authorities said 

The Fort Lauderdale Police Department said Thursday that three of its officers have been charged with falsifying a police report and subsequent sworn testimony connected to a 2009 police accident with and arrest of a Hilton hotel burglary suspect. Thirteen-year FLPD veteran Sgt. Michael Florenco and 6-year veteran Detective Matthew Moceri have both been charged with four counts of official misconduct, one count of perjury in an official proceeding and one count of conspiracy to commit official misconduct – all felonies – as well as four counts of falsifying records, a misdemeanor, the police department said. Officer Geoffrey Shaffer, who has been with the department five years, has been charged with four counts of official misconduct, one count of conspiracy to commit official misconduct and four counts of falsifying records, Fort Lauderdale Police said. The FBI Broward County Public Corruption Task Force, which investigated the case along with Fort Lauderdale Police and the Broward County State Attorney’s Office, said in its arrest warrants that the officers responded to a reported burglary at the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina during the early-morning hours of Nov. 22, 2009. When suspect Kenneth Post attempted to get away, the officers chased him, and at some point during the pursuit Post’s vehicle and the unmarked police vehicle driven by Sgt. Florenco crashed. Detective Moceri and Officer Shaffer, who were in Sgt. Florenco’s vehicle, helped him arrest Post, police said. They charged Post with two counts of attempted murder of a law enforcement officer, burglary, aggravated fleeing and eluding, resisting arrest with violence, aggravated assault and felony vandalism, police said. However, the public corruption task force’s investigation found that physical evidence contradicted the reports, probable cause affidavits and sworn testimony the officers provided, police said.  The three officers voluntarily surrendered at the Broward County Main Jail Thursday after they were notified that arrest warrants had been issued for them, Fort Lauderdale Police said. “If these allegations are true, then these three officers do not represent all of the honest hardworking police officers that work at the Fort Lauderdale Police Department,” Police Chief Franklin Adderley said in a statement. “We will continue to hold our employees accountable and maintain the public’s trust and safety.” Police said that Sgt. Florenco, 34, and Detective Moceri, 29, were already on paid administrative leave since April 18, 2011 because of an unrelated investigation, while Officer Shaffer, 31, was on paid administrative leave since March 9 of this year because of the Post corruption investigation, police said. Now that they have been criminally charged, the officers will be put on unpaid administrative leave pending the outcome of the criminal proceedings, police said, and the police department’s office of internal affairs will also do an administrative review. The Broward State Attorney’s Office said that charges related to Post’s alleged burglary are still pending, while anything relating to his charges involving the crash have been dropped. The pending charges against Post, 49, are two counts of burglary and one count each of burglary with assault or battery, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, possession of burglary tools and third-degree grand theft, according to online Broward court records. Post’s trial is due to start July 2, and his lead attorney is public defender Kelly Ann Murdock.