Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Former Officer Manuel Williams Sentenced for Child Molestation

DeKalb County prosecutors say a former police officer has been sentenced on child molestation charges.

Officials said Tuesday that former DeKalb County police officer Manuel Williams was sentenced to 10-years and is ordered to serve five of them in detention.

Prosecutors say Williams resigned from the department after he was arrested on molestation charges in 2012.

Officials say Williams is expected to be taken back into custody Friday. Williams have to register as a sex offender and is also ordered to undergo sex offender treatment.

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Previous Story - Arrest

Officer Naaman Adcock Arrested for Holding Gun to 5-year-old's Head

A Fort Smith police officer who was arrested after Sequoyah County Sheriff's Office deputies said he fired a gun inside his home and held a gun to a five-year-old's head has resigned.

Naaman Adcock resigned from the Fort Smith Police Department early Wednesday, according to KFSM, the CBS affiliate in Fort Smith.

Adcock was arrested Tuesday on complaints of suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, possession of a firearm while intoxicated, reckless conduct with a firearm, felonious pointing a firearm and child endangerment.

Deputies also arrested his wife, Tabatha Adcock, on complaints of failure to protect a child, child endangerment, possession of a firearm while intoxicated and reckless conduct with a firearm.

The sheriff's office told KFSM both fired guns inside their rural Sequoyah County home with at least two children inside.

Deputies confiscated nine guns found in the home.

KFSM says Fort Smith Police had placed Adcock on administrative leave with pay while the department conducted an internal investigation.

Jail records show Naaman Adcock's bond was set at $24,000, while Tabatha Adcock's bond was $14,000.

Sheriff Ron Lockhart says their report has been turned over the Sequoyah County district attorney's office.

Trooper David Corkett Pleads to Child Sex Abuse Charges

A former Oregon state trooper was back in Clatsop County on Tuesday to face more than two dozen child sex abuse charges.

David Corkett, 52, was a senior trooper in Astoria until he resigned in January 2013 after he was placed on administrative leave, pending an investigation in October 2012, according to Oregon State Police (OSP).

He appeared in court on Tuesday to face a 29 count indictment for encouraging child sex abuse. Two of those charges were in addition to the original 27 that came about as a result of an international investigation into the production and viewing of child pornography, according to the indictment.

The indictment also revealed that Corkett is charged not only with looking at child pornography, but also being in possession of a photograph of two nude boys holding hands on the beach. It was not known if the boys are from Clatsop County.

Clatsop County’s District Attorney Joshua Marquis would not talk about specifics of the case, but he did say Corkett pleaded not guilty on Tuesday. Corkett posted bail last month and is currently living in California.

No one answered the door of Corkett’s last known residence in Seaside on Tuesday to comment on the charges.

Neighbors who spoke with KOIN 6 News last month after Corkett’s arrest said they felt deceived by a man who they thought they could trust because of his position.

OSP also said last month there is no indication Corkett was looking at any of the images while he was on duty.

Corkett’s next appearance in court is scheduled for Aug. 8.

Deputy Roger Aaron Kirby Arrested for Beating Child

A Palm Beach County Sheriff’s deputy was arrested last week after allegedly battering a 5-year-old boy, leaving the child with hemorrhaging around the eyes and a swollen lip, according to a police report.

Roger Aaron Kirby, 37, was arrested Thursday and booked into the Palm Beach County Jail. Court records show Kirby was released Friday after posting $25,000 bond. Kirby is on paid administrative leave from PBSO pending an investigation.

The child, whose relationship to Kirby could not be verified, was admitted into the pediatric intensive care unit at Palms West Hospital on April 22 for what doctors diagnosed as petechial hemorrhaging that resulted from “manual asphyxiation,” the report said.

According to a medical report, the “most likely possibilities” for the boy’s injuries were that “he was smothered over the mouth and nose while he struggled to breathe or that he had ‘fallen’ off the bed and his face was forcibly pressed against the floor impeding his ability to breathe freely.”

After spending several days in the hospital, the boy was discharged. He was interviewed by a member of PBSO’s Child Protection Team but “was timid and reluctant to speak,” about what happened.

On May 22, a member of the Child Protection Team met with the boy, who said he was in the hospital because Kirby had choked him and hurt his eyes. The boy said he was in his bedroom when Kirby went into his room, whispered something then covered his mouth and nose. The report said the boy demonstrated a “choke hold” while re-enacting what happened to him. When he tried to get away, the boy said, Kirby squeezed him harder.

The boy indicated to the detective the alleged abuse has been ongoing. He said Kirby had become angry and disciplined him harshly after the boy wet the bed. The boy said Kirby has made him stand in the bathroom for “hours” and also made him jump up and down in front of the toilet. He’s forced to spend so much time in the bathroom that he falls asleep, which angers Kirby and causes him to hit the boy, the report said.

On one occasion, the child said, Kirby shoved a wet diaper into his face after a wetting accident. Kirby also “punches” him, including in the face, the boy said. Kirby is listed on his arrest report as 6-foot-4 and 250 pounds.

An unidentified person in the home cries and begs Kirby not to hurt the boy, the report said.

Kirby, a Wellington resident, joined the sheriff’s office in 2004 and works in the training division, a sheriff’s spokeswoman said.

In February 2012, Kirby was arrested after he allegedly slammed his girlfriend against an aluminum bi-fold door during an argument. Kirby told deputies that he and his girlfriend had argued about his 2-year-old daughter. The girlfriend, whose name was not released, said they had argued over Kirby’s drug use, according to the arrest report.

Court records show that the state attorney’s office did not file a charge of battery against Kirby.

Kirby is the second sheriff’s deputy arrested in less than a week.

Joaquin Fonseca, an undercover agent, was arrested and booked into the Palm Beach County Jail on May 20. He faces charges of official misconduct, possession of cocaine and false statements to a law enforcement officer during an investigation.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Police Officers, Boy Scout Leader, Paramedic and Many Others Arrested in Operation Caireen

Seemingly respectable members of the mainstream — a police officer, a paramedic, a rabbi, an airline pilot, an architect, a Boy Scout leader — were caught using the Internet to collect and trade child pornography, federal officials said Wednesday.

The six were among 70 New York City-area men and one woman charged as the result of a five-week investigation by the Homeland Security Investigations arm of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Some of the defendants, using search terms like “real child rape” and “family sex,” had downloaded thousands of disturbing images on their computers inside suburban homes they shared with their families. The lone woman was accused of allowing another suspect to videotape her son.

Federal and state officials who announced the arrests on Wednesday called it one of the largest local roundups ever of people who seek to anonymously share the porn online — and a stark reminder that they come from all walks of life.

“This operation puts the lie to the classic, stereotypical profile that child predators are nothing more than unemployed drifters,” said James Hayes, head of ICE’s New York office.

Authorities say an alarming number of the defendants held positions of trust that gave them access to young children. The Boy Scout leader also coached a youth baseball team. The rabbi home-schooled his children and others. Another person used hidden cameras to secretly film his children’s friends.

The operation was meant to send a message to producers and consumers of child porn “that they are going to be identified, that they are going to be found,” Hayes said. “Those people need to look themselves in the mirror and do whatever they need to do to stop this activity.”

Authorities say advances in technology and computer capacity have allowed child-porn collectors to easily amass vast troves of images and to exchange files with each other directly. The New York effort resulted in the seizure of nearly 600 desktop and laptop computers, tablets, smartphones and other devices containing massive amounts of storage.

Agents were still examining the devices to locate and catalog evidence, an arduous task that could result in more arrests. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children also will have analysts review the images to see whether it can identify children using databases of known victims.

“We refer to each of these images as a crime scene photo because that’s exactly what they are,” said John Ryan, the organization’s chief executive officer.

Authorities decided to launch the operation after the arrest in January of the Mount Pleasant, New York, police chief, who pleaded not guilty this week to federal charges of knowingly receiving and distributing child pornography. Court papers allege that Brian Fanelli told investigators he began looking at child porn as research before it grew into a “personal interest.”

In May, agents on computers created a digital dragnet with the same tactics used in the Fanelli case: Agents posed as collectors of child porn who wanted to anonymously trade it through file-sharing programs others use to share pirated hit music and movies. Once given access to personal libraries of child porn photos and videos, the agents identified the numeric IP addresses of the sources of the material.

The next step as was to subpoena Internet service providers to obtain names associated with the IP addresses. The investigators narrowed the list down to 100 people who were the most active and recent traders, and obtained search and arrest warrants.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Detective Joshua Boyd Charged with Domestic Violence

A Maricopa police detective accused of assaulting his wife and son during a domestic dispute was arrested Saturday and put on paid leave.

Detective Joshua Boyd, 41, faces charges of aggravated assault, assault, disorderly conduct and criminal damage, according to a press release Monday from the City of Maricopa Police Department.

Officers responded to a domestic violence call at 4:02 a.m. Saturday. Alcohol is considered to be a factor.

"The victim...explained she was pushed by her husband...causing her to fall to the floor and injure her right wrist. It was also learned her 14-year-old son was assaulted by Boyd while trying to protect his mother," the release said.

Both were treated at the scene for minor injuries.

Boyd is also accused of striking a separation gate with a broom until it was bent and non-functional and of breaking the broom over his knee, the release said.

Boyd was booked into the Pinal County Jail. He will be placed on paid administrated leave pending an internal investigation.

Boyd, a Maricopa Police Department member since 2007, is currently assigned to the Arizona Vehicle Theft Task Force.

Officer Howard Garrison Arrested for Domestic Violence

The Glasgow Police Department says Officer Howard Garrison has been placed on administrative leave with pay.

Police say he will be on leave until investigations by both KSP and Internal Affairs are complete.

Garrison was arrested on Friday after an alleged assault.

A Glasgow Police Officer is facing a domestic violence charge after being arrested.

Kentucky State Police said they received a call Friday just after 11 PM from Glasgow Police Chief Guy Turcotte asking them to investigate an incident involving, Glasgow Police Officer Howard Garrison.

Shortly after arriving on the scene, Garrison was arrested and charged with Assault fourth degree, Domestic Violence with minor injury.

Garrison was held at the Barren County Jail for a short time before eventually being released.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Officer Leon Sealey Arrested for Domestic Violence

An officer with the Columbia Police Department has been arrested in connection with a domestic incident involving his wife, officials say.

Master Police Officer Leon Sealey, 64, was arrested Sunday, according to Richland County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Capt. Chris Cowan.

Deputies with the sheriff’s department responded to a disturbance at the officer’s address in a residential area northeast of Columbia around noon, Cowan said.

It was unclear whether Sealey and his wife had been arguing, but Sealey had threatened her and stuck a gun in her face, Cowan said.

Sealey was charged with criminal domestic violence and taken to the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center.

Sealey also was suspended without pay pending the sheriff department's investigation, Columbia Police Department spokeswoman Jennifer Timmons said.

Trooper Stratford Young Charged with Sodomy of Minor & Rape


Kenton Smith, attorney for former Kentucky State Police trooper Stratford Young, filed the motion Thursday in Meade Circuit Court in Brandenburg.

Young is charged with two counts of third-degree sodomy and one count of third-degree rape.

According to Young’s indictment, the offenses with a then-15-year-old girl occurred “on or about May 22, 2013, through July 31, 2013.”

All of Young’s charges claim he was a “person in a position of authority or position of special trust” when he engaged in sex acts, including intercourse, with the underage girl as a result of his position of authority.

The motion calls into question the definition of a person in a position of authority or position of special trust in a Kentucky Revised Statute subsection, of which Young is charged.

The statute defines position of authority to mean parents — biological, adoptive, foster or step — adult youth leader, teacher, school employee and others. It does not list a police or law enforcement officer.

Smith said because the statute neglects to list police officers, it is unconstitutionally vague, which is grounds for dismissal.

“Essentially, they are trying to put a square peg in a round hole,” he said of the Commonwealth’s charges in an interview following the hearing. “The motion is well taken in law and fact. We’re cautiously optimistic the charges will be dismissed.”

Jefferson County As­sist­ant Commonwealth’s Attorney Sarah Farmer, special prosecutor for the case, said she anticipated the motion.

“We expected it to come,” she said. “We’re not surprised.”

Farmer now has 45 days to file a response to the motion and Smith was given 30 days following Farmer’s response to file his. Once both responses are filed, then the Judge Bruce Butler will make a determination.

No future court date was set in the case.

Robert Schaefer, attorney for former Brandenburg police officer Todd Matti, said he is awaiting the outcome of the motion made in Young’s case to file one of his own.

He also said in court a plea offer was made to his client, but he did not disclose the details.

Matti is charged with two counts of third-degree sodomy.

According to Matti’s indictment, the offenses occurred “on or about Nov. 16, 2012, in Meade County,” six days after the girl turned 15.

The second count charges third-degree sodomy by a “person in a position of authority or position of special trust” when Matti engaged in “deviate sexual intercourse” with the underage girl as a result of his position of authority.

An indictment is an allegation, not proof of guilt.

The motion Smith made could be “terminal” to the Commonwealth’s case against Young based on precedent and it applies to one of his client’s charges, Schaefer said.

The next appearance for Matti is a pre-trail conference at 9 a.m. June 19.

Both men have entered not guilty pleas and requested court files, including documents from the investigation, be sealed. The Commonwealth’s did not object. Matti and Young remain free on a 10 percent of $10,000 cash bond.

Schaefer and Smith said they had to supply an external hard drive to the Commonwealth attorney for discovery.

“The investigators in the case did a thorough job,” Smith said. “The information provided is voluminous.”

Because of all the in­formation, Schaefer said the process will be lengthy.

“It takes time to work through all that for rel­evant information,” Schaefer said. “I’m going to continue to work through discovery on this.”

KSP Post 4 spokesman Jeff Gregory said the case originally was brought to the post July 31 with a complaint of a KSP trooper from Post 4 having inappropriate relations with an underage girl. The investigation, which is ongoing, uncovered additional allegations against another KSP trooper, a Brandenburg police officer, a Breckinridge County sheriff’s deputy and an adult male in another state.

In an interview March 3, Jefferson County Com­monwealth’s Attorney Tom Wine, whose office has been assigned as special prosecutors in the case, said indictments would be sought against four individuals during the grand jury presentation Monday. Only cases against Matti and Young were presented.

Information regarding former trooper Jerry Clanton and former Breckinridge County Sheriff’s deputy Chris Woosley have not been presented to the grand jury and Farmer said she has no intentions of presenting those cases while the other two are ongoing.

“We do not have an intention to present anything else,” she said. “We are focusing on this case.”

Clanton admitted to sexual relations with the girl during a KSP Trial Board in early January appealing his termination.

Farmer said the cases are moving normally through the court system.

“It’s our judicial process,” she said. “We’re moving as timely as we can.”

Matti resigned Oct. 15 and Woosley resigned Sept. 5. Young and Clanton were terminated from employment Sept. 13.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Lt. Benito Gonzalez Jr Accused of Masturbating in Starbucks

A high-ranking officer of the Camden County Police Department is accused of committing a lewd act in a Cherry Hill coffee shop.

Lt. Benito Gonzalez Jr., who supervises the department's narcotics unit, has been removed from duty over allegations that he masturbated in public at a Route 70 Starbucks, a county spokesman said Monday.

The Deptford man was arrested Friday in connection with the May 7 incident, according to Cherry Hill police records.

"We are deeply troubled by the allegations of this off-duty conduct," said county spokesman Dan Keashen. "A swift and thorough investigation is being conducted."

According to the police report, Gonzalez allegedly pulled down his shorts and exposed himself at the coffee shop, "knowing or reasonably expecting that the act was likely to be observed by a non-consenting person who likely would be affronted or alarmed."

Gonzalez left the shop, but a Starbucks employee reported the incident to police immediately, said company spokeswoman Laurel Harper.

"Our top priority is to provide a safe environment for our customers and employees, and we take all reports of inappropriate activity in our stores very seriously," she said.

Gonzalez was charged with a disorderly persons lewdness offense, according to a Cherry Hill police spokeswoman, Lt. Amy Winters. "The investigation is still ongoing," she said.

Keashen offered a similar outlook.

"We are working to ascertain all of the facts in this matter with Cherry Hill Police Department and the Camden County Prosecutor's Office," Keashen said.

Police posted surveillance photos of a suspect after the incident at the department's Facebook page, but they were no longer online Monday.

The incident occurred at a Starbucks in the 1100 block of Route 70, at the Kinko's Plaza.

Gonzalez is a 17-year veteran and a former member of the city-run police department that was disbanded to make way for the county force.

Gonzalez was honored by the county police department in July 2013, after he and two other officers helped an elderly woman return home to Kentucky after she got lost and ended up in Camden. Gonzalez found the woman asleep in a car at 2nd and Clinton streets; with two detectives, he got the woman to a Brooklawn motel and contacted a relative.

The officers then accompanied the woman to a Philadelphia bus station to ensure her return home.

Officer Ed Zehner Arrested for Drunk Driving

IMPD Officer Ed Zehner was arrested for operating while intoxicated Sunday evening at 11:30, New Palestine’s chief of police confirmed.

He was arrested by a New Palestine officer when the officer spotted him swerving on rural Hancock County roads.

The police chief said Zehner had a BAC of .16, which is twice the legal limit.

He was taken to Hancock County Jail.

Officer Steven Feinbery Charged with Molesting Child

A Memphis police officer charged with molesting a child is out of jail on bond.

Steven Feinberg paid $40,000 to get out of jail Saturday.

He’s accused of sexually abusing a girl for the last five years.

According to the police report, the Department of Children’s Services got an anonymous tip that Feinberg was sexually abusing this girl.

During a forensic interview, she told police it was true.

“What makes everyone surprised is that it`s a police officer, somebody we trust,” said Dr. Jeffery Freiden, a licensed counselor who treats sex offenders in Shelby County.

Prosecutors have charged the Memphis police officer with molesting the girl since she was 12 years old.

Investigators say he started touching her when she was 12 and by the time she was 14, he started having sex with her.

Police say the victim is now 17 and opened up about this abuse, which she says happened in multiple houses Feinberg has lived in over the years.

The 33-year-old wasn’t at his Cordova home when WREG stopped by on Saturday.

Neighbors say they saw police at his house several times in the last few weeks.

“Kind of unsettling,” said neighbor, Kim Parsley.

Neighbors say he’s married with children.

“We teach our children to trust a police officer, trust people in charge,” said Dr. Freiden. “We have also got to teach our children that when they know something is wrong to come talk to you.”

Dr. Freiden says, if convicted, officer Fienberg could be spending years in prison because of how young the victim was when he allegedly started to abuse her.

“His first contact was at age 12,” said Dr. Freiden. “Usually ‘12’ is a number that State usually looks at as being way over the line.”

The Memphis Police Department has taken Feinberg off the job and Police Director Toney Armstrong says he’s going to ensure justice is served.

Feinberg has been a Memphis police officer since 2007.

If the accusations are true, this means that this sexual abuse started about two years after he joined the force.

He’s due in court Tuesday at 9 a.m.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Officer Andre Corbin & Officer Ralph Pereira Charged with Sexually Assaulting Children

Two police officers in southern New Jersey are accused of sexually assaulting children.

Atlantic County prosecutors say Atlantic City Officer Andre Corbin and Brigantine Officer Ralph Pereira are each charged with two counts of sexual contact and single counts of official misconduct, child endangerment and criminal sexual contact. Corbin also faces an additional count of official misconduct.

The charges against Pereira involve a 16-year-old girl. Prosecutors say he held a position of authority and disciplinary power over the teen.

Further details on the charges against Corbin have not been released.

Corbin was freed after posting $100,000 bond, while Pereira was being held on $100,000 cash bail.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Former Sheriff's Officer Brian McRee Arrested in Sex Sting

Fourteen men, including a former Jacksonville sheriff’s officer, have been arrested in the week-long Operation Volusia Spring Cleaning cyber-sting that targeted adults looking to meet children for sex, according to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office.

Brian McRee, 51, was charged Saturday with 50 counts of possession of sexual performance by a child, plus use of a computer to solicit a minor, traveling to solicit a minor and unlawful use of two-way communications, according to the Volusia Sheriff’s Office. Surveillance video shows him being wrestled to the floor during his arrest at a decoy house in DeBary. A bottle of liquor, gun, a computer with child pornography, a digital camera and an injectable treatment for erectile dysfunction were found on him, according to investigators.

Former Officer Robby Smith Arrested for Larceny of Farm Equipment

A former Minco police officer was arrested Wednesday after investigators found stolen farm equipment on the man’s property, the Canadian County sheriff’s office reported.

Robby A. Smith, 33, of Minco, was arrested on complaints of larceny of implements of husbandry and conspiracy to commit a felony.

The investigation began after the Canadian County sheriff’s office received complaints of thefts in southwest rural Canadian County. Investigators were led to a property where they thought stolen items were concealed or taken at the 16800 block of Reno Road West, Canadian County Undersheriff Chris West said.

Investigators found stolen farm equipment and a stolen pickup.

“My investigators quickly learned that some of the items found tied in with and was a part of a larger theft ring where multiple tractors and pieces of machinery and equipment had been taken, involving tens of thousands of dollars,” Canadian County Sheriff Randall Edwards said in a statement.

Canadian County investigators worked with National Insurance Crime Bureau agents and state Agriculture Department investigators using information that led to Smith’s home in Grady County, West said.

Investigators recovered multiple tractors and pieces of equipment, West said.

“This is just the tip of the iceberg. We fully expect there to be multiple arrests and additional stolen property recovered as a result of Robby’s confession and involvement,” Edwards said.

Smith was taken to the Canadian County jail. His bond was set at $6,000.

Former Officer Patrick Earwood Convicted on 10 Counts of Child Molestation

Jurors took two hours Wednesday to convict former Cave Spring police officer Patrick Earwood on 10 counts, including aggravated child molestation, in Floyd County Superior Court.

Earwood, 31, faces 25 years to life in prison for aggravated child molestation. Judge Tami Colston is scheduled June 9 to sentence Earwood on all his charges.

“I’m very pleased with the jury’s verdict,” Assistant District Attorney Kay Ann Wetherington said.

Jurors convicted Earwood on two counts each of aggravated sodomy and second-degree child cruelty and on one count each of aggravated child molestation, sexual battery, sexual assault against a person in custody, child molestation, giving false statements and violation of his oath as a public officer.

They acquitted Earwood on one count each of sexual assault against a person in custody and sexual battery.

Peter Odom, Earwood’s attorney, said he respects the jury, adding it’s likely his client will appeal.

“We’re very disappointed in the verdict,” Odom said. “Obviously, the jury did not see things the way we thought they should.”

Jurors found that Ear wood touched or coerced three of four women into sex acts between 2012 and June 2013. They acquitted Earwood on accusations he touched a woman’s breasts in exchange for not taking her to jail for DUI.

Closing arguments

Odom attacked the victims in his closing arguments, questioning their credibility and deriding prosecutors for what he called a lack of evidence.

“Allegations are easy to make,” Odom told jurors. “But in a court of law they’ve got to withstand the acid test of your reasoning.

“I’m going to talk to you about what the evidence is — words,” Odom added. “You’ve got the words of two teenagers and two criminals. That’s it.”

The allegations against Earwood surfaced last June when one of the teens told a friend. Police began investigating, and on July 1 arrested Earwood.

Odom told jurors that the teens initially denied that his client touched them, saying that’s why the younger girl was reticent about testifying.

“She made it up,” Odom said. “She got Sgt. (Teri) Davis all worked up to the point that she made an arrest, and she can’t take it back.”

Odom said the girls’ stories kept changing because they’re false. The two adult women had a reason to lie because they faced potential criminal charges.

One woman admitted she used drugs and has a conviction for giving police false information. The other was stopped for DUI, though her case never reached court, Odom said.

The defense attorney also hammered prosecutors for failing to provide jurors the victims’ phone records. Odom questioned why Davis didn’t get the records between one teen and her boyfriend, and the conversations between both teen victims.

“What physical evidence do you have to support the claims the state is making?” Odom asked. “You’ve got nothing.”

Wetherington dismissed Odom’s arguments, telling jurors the victims’ testimony is the best evidence.

“He had a badge,” Wetherington said of Earwood. “He had a gun. He had a patrol car. He had power. I can only imagine how these victims felt at the time this officer exercised control over them. Instead of serve and protect he chose to molest and assault.”

Wetherington advised jurors against focusing on what she called unimportant details, and instead examine the elements of the crimes.

Three of the victims didn’t live in Cave Spring. The victim who lived in the small town was 14 years old at the time and without parental supervision.

“What has she gained from this?” Wetherington asked. “Nothing. She has nothing to gain. No motive whatsoever.

“This is not a conspiracy,” the prosecutor added. “This is not a coincidence.”

The teen victims know each other, but the adult victims don’t know any of the others. Wetherington called them credible because of that and because she said they told similar stories: that Earwood coerced a sex act from them in exchange for avoiding jail.

“Please be the voice of these girls,” Wetherington said, referring to all four victims. “They’ve got no dog in this fight.”

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Officer Logan McDonald Arrested for Malfeasance in Office


A Shreveport police officer placed on administrative leave last month has been arrested on an outstanding warrant by Shreveport Police detectives Tuesday afternoon.

Logan McDonald 30, was booked into the Caddo Correctional Center on an outstanding warrant charging him with a single count of Malfeasance in office.

The rules and regulations of the Shreveport Fire and Police Municipal Civil Service Board mandate that, “When an employee is charged with a felony he shall, and if a misdemeanor he may, be immediately relieved of duty and placed on "departmental leave" for up to one week at full pay and with continuing seniority.”

Bond in the matter has been set at $1,000.00

Deputy Eric Vaughan Uses Excessive Force to Pry Open Woman's Mouth

 Surveillance video of confrontation in Summit County Domestic Relations Court:

A woman was injured and then charged with resisting arrest after a Summit County sheriff’s deputy pried open her jaw after she took prescription Tylenol.

The incident took place in a prisoner-holding room in domestic relations court where Siobhan Householder, 35, said she was told to wait last week while a warrant was being lifted on a charge of failing to appear at a hearing.

The Akron woman went to court on her own May 8 and said she didn’t believe she was in custody and, therefore, felt free to take the Tylenol for a tooth infection.

A sheriff’s spokesman, however, said Wednesday that the woman was in custody and she was stopped from taking the medication for her own protection.

An internal investigation, as required by department policy, is underway because of the deputy’s use of force.

A surveillance camera mounted inside the room shows Deputy Eric Vaughan leaving the holding room with a jail inmate about 2:35 p.m. Householder then walks in alone with her purse, a second bag and a plastic cup of soda and takes a seat.

There is no audio with the video. The deputy and inmate soon return.

After the deputy was there about two minutes, Householder said she took two Tylenol pills along with a sip of soda. She was taking a third when the deputy confronted her, she said.

“He said, ‘What are you taking?’ and I said, Tylenol,” she recalled. “And he said, ‘Spit it out’ and I said, ‘I can’t.’ I meant to say I can’t spit it out because I had already swallowed the other pills.

“But I didn’t even get that part out before he just yanked me up and threw me down on the ground and was trying to dig these pills out of mouth.

“And there was one [pill] in there and I couldn’t even get it out because he kept shoving his hand in my mouth and squeezing my face and pulling my hair at the same time.”

Wrestled to floor

The deputy is seen in the video grabbing the woman’s hair at the back of her head and taking his hand to her jaw while wrestling her to the floor.

“He was pulling down on my bottom lip and squeezing my face at the same time,” she said in an interview Tuesday. “He basically pulled my lip away from my teeth.”

She said she suffered a bruised chin, cuts inside her mouth, bruises to her legs and some hair loss.

At one point during the tussle, the prescription bottle falls to the floor and the deputy picks it up and reads the label. He eventually appears to collect a single Tylenol pill that fell on the carpeting.

Afterward, Householder, a mother of three, was handcuffed and frisked and her bags were searched. She was then taken to Akron General Medical Center.

“They were acting like I wanted to escape from Alcatraz. It was awful,” she said.

Sheriff’s Inspector Bill Holland, speaking on behalf of the department and deputy, said Vaughan was ordered to take Householder into custody. Householder said she was unaware she was in custody.

“While taking Ms. Householder into custody, Deputy Vaughan witnessed her attempt to ingest several pills. He restrained her for her safety and she was transported to a local hospital where she was treated and released,” Holland wrote in an emailed statement.



A court spokeswoman also said Householder was in custody until she could be booked and released.

In fact, jail records show Householder was “remote booked and released on domestic relations case” that same afternoon, either from the courthouse or the hospital.

A magistrate also signed the order lifting the warrant that same day.

Treated at scene

Paramedics treated Householder at the scene for a bloody mouth. She was in the hospital ER when she was released with summonses on charges of resisting arrest and obstructing official business.

She has a prior resisting-arrest charge stemming from an unrelated incident in April.

Deputies in the courthouse seized her prescribed medications, which include the nine Tylenol and two diazepam tablets. They also seized 26 ibuprofen tablets Householder had in a plastic sandwich bag that were kept in her purse, and three unknown pills they said were in a latex glove. Householder disputes putting any pills in a latex glove.

She has not been charged with any drug offenses.

Officer Chris Buffaloe Faces Child Sex Crimes

A veteran law enforcement officer and noted canine handler and trainer has been charged with numerous counts for allegedly engaging in sexual activity with a 14-year-old girl.

Christopher (Chris) Turner Buffaloe, 27, of Conway, was jailed Tuesday on $1,294,000 bond and has a first court appearance in Northampton County today (Thursday).

The date of offenses, according to warrants filed in the Northampton County Courthouse, and based on investigation by the State Bureau of Investigation, range from March 1 to April 14.

The SBI investigation shows Buffaloe allegedly committed a range of crimes against the girl, from sexual intercourse to sending photos of his genitalia.

He faces the following charges:
Six counts of felony statutory rape that include alleged sexual activity with the child;
One count of indecent liberties with a child that alleges he committed and attempted to commit a lewd and lascivious act with the child;

One count of felony second-degree exploitation of a minor, a count that alleges he received and solicited material that contained a visual representation of a minor engaged in sexual activity and a picture of the child’s sexual organ. The count alleges he asked the victim to send him naked pictures;

One count of felony solicitation of a child by computer. This count alleges soliciting by means of a computer and through texting a meeting for the purpose of committing an unlawful sexual act with the child; and

One count of disseminating obscene material, a charge that alleges he sent a picture of his genitalia to the child.

Buffaloe has worked with several law enforcement agencies in Northampton and Halifax counties throughout his career, to include the Seaboard Police Department. He was named in January of 2010 at the Captain of Conway-Severn Rescue Squad, an entity that offers a Juniors (ages 14-17) program in an effort to get young people interested in becoming the next generation of EMT’s.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Lt. Eduardo Raposo Charged with Assault Has Retired for the Force

A Fall River police officer arrested in Swansea on charges he kicked a woman has retired from the force, Fall River’s police chief confirmed Monday.

While Fall River’s chief did not elaborate on the charges against Lt. Eduardo Raposo, Swansea Police Chief George Arruda said the officer was arrested at 9:30 p.m. last Wednesday night after Swansea police were called to a home on Kensington Court.

Arruda said officers were met in the driveway by a woman who told them Raposo kicked her while he was intoxicated. She also reportedly told officers Raposo had a gun and he was waiving it around. Arruda said Raposo was inside the home and turned over to police a 9mm gun – which was locked in a safe.

Arruda said Swansea police charged Raposo with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and carrying a firearm while intoxicated.

Following Raposo’s arrest, Fall River Police Chief Daniel S. Racine said he immediately suspended Raposo’s license to carry a firearm and began the process for a termination hearing.

“To say I am disturbed about this latest incident would be a gross understatement,” Racine said in a statement Monday. “The conduct detailed by the Swansea Police Department is disturbing and will not be tolerated by the Fall River Police Department.”

However, before that termination process played out, Racine said he got word from Fall River’s Retirement Board that on May 15 Raposo retired from the Fall River Police Dept. effective immediately.

Racine said Lt. Raposo, by retiring, removed himself the department’s purview of rules, regulations, and disciplinary procedures.

Officer Brian Hodges Charged with Beating His Wife

An officer from North Braddock is facing charges in the beating of his wife, while dressed in full uniform.

It’s not clear if Brian Hodges was on duty at the time of his arrest, but according to the criminal complaint he was dressed in full uniform.

Investigators said Hodges was arrested in Brentwood after his wife’s daughter called 911 and reported the beating.

The victim, Hodges wife, told police that he had choked her and slammed her head against a brick wall during an argument about an affair she accused him of having.

The victim’s daughter also told police that she witnessed the incident.

During the incident, the complaint stated, Hodges told his wife that, “he knew the cops, and who was working, and nothing was going to happen.”

Hodges denied the accusations and told police that custody issues were ongoing and, “the children will say anything.”

Police arrested Hodges and charged him with disorderly conduct and simple assault.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Prison Guards Tortured a Mentally Ill Man Until His Skin “Shriveled from his Body” & He Died

The purported details of Darren Rainey’s last hour are difficult to read.

“I can’t take it no more, I’m sorry. I won’t do it again,’’ he screamed over and over, according to a grievance complaint from a fellow inmate, as Rainey was allegedly locked in a shower with the scalding water turned on full blast.

A 50-year-old mentally ill inmate at the Dade Correctional Institution, Rainey was pulled into the locked shower by prison guards as punishment after defecating in his cell and refusing to clean it up, said the fellow inmate, who worked as an orderly. He was left there unattended for more than an hour as the narrow chamber filled with steam and water.

When guards finally checked on prisoner 060954, he was on his back and dead. His skin was so burned that it had shriveled from his body, a condition referred to as slippage, according to a medical document involving the death.

But nearly two years after Rainey’s death on June 23, 2012, the Miami-Dade medical examiner has yet to complete an autopsy and Miami-Dade police have not charged anyone. The Florida Department of Corrections halted its probe into the matter, saying it could be restarted if the autopsy and police investigation unearth new information.

“They told people that he had a heart attack,’’ said a source close to the prison system with knowledge of the case.

The shower treatment was only one form of punishment inflicted by the prison’s guards to keep mentally ill patients in line, according to the inmate/orderly and two other sources privy to the goings-on at the state prison.

The inmate/orderly, a convicted burglar named Harold Hempstead serving a decades-long sentence, filed repeated formal complaints, beginning in January 2013, with the DOC inspector general, alleging that prison guards subjected inmates — housed in the mental health unit — to extreme physical abuse and withheld food from some who became unruly. The complaints were sent back, most with a short, type-written note saying the appeal was being returned “without action” or had already been addressed.

In September, another inmate was found dead inside his cell. Richard Mair, 40, hanged himself from an air conditioning vent.

According to the police report, Mair left a suicide note in his boxer shorts claiming he and other prisoners were sexually and physically abused on a routine basis by guards.

DOC officials declined to be interviewed for this story. A spokeswoman said Friday that the agency would provide public records in response to the newspaper’s formal written requests, but no comments.

Over the past several weeks, the newspaper has requested maintenance records, grievance logs, prison death records, guards’ disciplinary records and emails by administrators, including DCI Warden Jerry Cummings.

As of Friday, the agency had released a handful of documents: a single report about a prison guard admonished for falling asleep on duty last year; brief, coded disciplinary records for Hempstead, Rainey and several other inmates who Hempstead says were also subjected to searing hot showers as punishment; and a heavily redacted copy of the DOC inspector general’s report on Rainey’s death.

On Friday, the Herald learned from three independent sources that Cummings and four of his top aides had been temporarily relieved of duty last week.

It’s not clear why Cummings and other administrators were suspended, or for how long.

The DOC did not respond to an email query about the suspensions late Friday.

Rainey’s family, meanwhile, finds the silence surrounding his death disturbing.

“Two years is a very long time to wait to find out why your brother was found dead in a shower,’’ said Rainey’s brother, Andre Chapman.

Rainey, who was serving a two-year sentence for possession of cocaine, was scheduled to be released in July.

Numerous complaints

Between January and February 2013, Hempstead filed numerous grievances and complaints with DOC officials about Rainey’s death, all alleging that the circumstances were being covered up.

His reports, replete with the names of other inmate witnesses and prison guards on duty that evening, describe what he and others purportedly saw and heard that night. The details in his complaints match the wording in the inspector general’s report — at least the parts not redacted.

The inspector general’s report said that the video camera in the shower area showed DOC officer Roland Clarke place Rainey in the shower at 7:38 p.m.

Hempstead said the shower had sufficient room for an inmate to avoid a direct hit from the spray, but that the extreme heat would eventually make the air unbreathable as the scalding water lapped at inmates’ feet.

Hempstead wrote that he and other inmates, whose cells are directly below the shower, began hearing Rainey’s screams about 8:55 p.m. It went on for about 30 minutes before it sounded like he fell to the shower floor, he said in his complaint.

The DOC inspector general’s report said Clarke found Rainey dead at 9:30 p.m. and called for medical assistance.

“I then seen [sic] his burnt dead body naked body go about two feet from my cell door on a stretcher,’’ Hempstead wrote.

Miami-Dade homicide investigators were called to the prison.

But another inmate, a convicted murderer named Mark Joiner, wrote in a letter to the inspector general that he was ordered to “clean up the crime scene’’ prior to the area being secured.

Early in the week after the incident, maintenance workers at the prison disabled the plumbing that fed the shower, Hempstead told the Herald in an interview at the prison.

Despite all his written complaints, Hempstead was never interviewed by anyone from the prison system, he said. Another inmate was spoken to, according to the report. That’s presumably Joiner, although the DOC will not divulge the name. The Herald is waiting for a transcript of that interview, which DOC officials said would be redacted of any information pertaining to an open criminal investigation.

As for the video camera in the shower area, the inspector general’s report noted that it malfunctioned right after Clarke put Rainey in the shower. As a result, the disc that may have recorded what happened was “damaged,’’ the report said.

The redacted report doesn’t say how Rainey’s body was found, whether the water was on or off when he was found or whether state investigators ever questioned any of the guards or nurses in the unit at the time of Rainey’s death.

The union that represents the prison guards was not aware of the incident as of this past week. No record was provided to the Herald to indicate that anyone has been held accountable for what happened.

A suicide note

Mair was found hanging in his cell on Sept. 11, 2013. A braided rope, made from cut sections of bed sheets, was attached to the ceiling air vent and looped around his neck, according to a Miami-Dade police report.

Tucked into a pocket sewed into his boxer shorts was a suicide note in which Mair, serving life for second-degree murder, described a litany of abuses against inmates in the mental health unit.

“Life sucks and then you die, but just before I go, I’m going to expose everyone for who and what they are,’’ he wrote.

“I’m in a mental health facility...I’m supposed to be getting help for my depression, suicidal tendencies and I was sexually assaulted.’’

He then goes on to allege that guards forced inmates in the unit to perform sex acts and threatened them if they filed complaints.

He said guards — identified by name in the note — gambled on duty, sold marijuana and cigarettes, and stole money and property belonging to inmates.

“If they didn’t like you, they put you on a starvation diet,’’ he wrote.

He also alleged that guards encouraged racial hatred by forcing white and black inmates to fight each other in the yard, claiming that the guards would place bets on who would win.

Mair’s next of kin was in prison in Maine and unavailable for comment.

There’s no evidence that the state inspector general’s probe into Mair’s death addressed any of the allegations in the suicide note.

The probe concluded that guards had been negligent in failing to adequately check on Mair the evening he killed himself.

Les Cantrell, state coordinator for Teamsters Local 2011 — the union representing the state’s 17,000 corrections and probation officers — said there has been a spike in prison complaints across the state. Employee turnover is staggering, he said, particularly among prison guards who are often forced to work long hours to compensate for officers they have lost and failed to replace.

“In general, we have a difficult time retaining good officers,’’ Cantrell said. “Assaults on officers have risen and inmates know they are short-staffed.

“It makes it unsafe for the officers and for the inmates,’’ he said.

The six-page inspector general’s investigation into Rainey’s death was completed in October 2012. DOC Inspector General Jeffrey Beasley closed the case, concluding there was not enough information to issue any finding.

“...the exact cause of death has not been determined by the Medical Examiner. Upon receipt of the autopsy report, it will be included in the investigative file,’’ the report said, noting that if “administrative matters” subsequently arise as a result of the autopsy, they will be addressed at a future time.

The report, which includes brief written statements by Clarke as well as other guards and nurses, has large passages that have been redacted — obscured with a black marker.

The Department of Corrections has not responded to requests from the Herald to provide the legal justification for each redaction, as required under the state’s public records law.

After Hempstead was interviewed at the prison by a Herald journalist on April 14, Miami-Dade homicide investigators also paid him a visit to interview him about the two-year-old case, he wrote in a letter emailed to Gov. Rick Scott last week through a family member.

According to the letter, three corrections officers, including a sergeant, responded to the visits by threatening to set him up with false disciplinary reports and to place him in solitary confinement if he didn’t stop talking to the media and police.

He said he feared for his safety and wanted to be relocated to a different prison.

Last week, the Herald sought clearance to speak with Hempstead in the prison a second time after receiving a letter from him authorizing the return visit.

Jessica Carey, spokeswoman for the state Department of Corrections, responded that Hempstead “had a custody classification which prohibits interviews at this time.’’

When pressed further about whether he was being punished, Carey said she had made “a mistake’’ and directed a Herald reporter to fill out a visitation form.

Neither Miami-Dade police nor the Miami-Dade medical examiner responded to requests for information about the Rainey case. Each say his death is still an open investigation, but did not address why it has taken almost two years.

Officer Lonnie Morris Arrested for Drunk Driving in Patrol Car

A Chandler police officer was arrested Sunday morning for allegedly driving under the influence.

Seth Tyler with the Chandler Police Department confirmed that one of its officers was arrested for suspected DUI at 10:36 a.m.

He said the officer showed up for an "extra-duty" job near Arizona Avenue just south of Queen Creek Road and appeared to be impaired.

Tyler identified the officer as 53-year-old Lonnie Morris, a 19-year veteran with the Department.

Tyler said the officer was processed and has been placed on paid-administrative leave pending an internal investigation. The officer was then transferred to a local hospital for observation.

Tyler said the officer was driving a Chandler police patrol car.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Former Officer Walter Urena Incest Conviction Upheld

The Louisiana 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal has affirmed the incest convictions of a retired Alexandria police officer, but it ordered a review of part of his sentencing.

Walter Urena, 66, was found guilty on five of six counts of aggravated incest in a jury trial in 2013. He was sentenced to two consecutive 20-year terms and three concurrent 10-year prison terms.

Urena, who was arrested in July 2011, appealed the convictions and the sentences on the grounds of insufficient evidence and that the two 20-year sentences were excessive.

On May 7, the appellate court sent the case back to the trial court to reconsider the consecutive 20-year sentences.

According to the appellate court’s opinion, written by Judge Billy Howard Ezell, Urena “is not one of the worst of offenders when it comes to child sexual abuse.”

The opinion also states that “while the victim in the current case was a minor, five or six when the abuse began, it did not escalate from touching and ended when the victim told him to stop. Without sufficient justification, we find that the two consecutive sentences totaling forty years is nothing more than cruel and unusual punishment.”

Rapides Parish Assistant District Attorney Monique Metoyer prosecuted the case.

She said prosecuting a public figure, such as a former police officer, carries with it a different level of expectations.

“There’s a level of disappointment you don’t have otherwise,” she said. “It’s almost incomprehensible. You think you know someone, and you don’t. It’s a total violation, and it’s a selfish, selfish act.”

Former Officer Steven Webb & Wife Sentenced to Prison for Child Porn Charges

Ex-Kannapolis police officer Steven Anthony Webb and his wife were sentenced this week in a child porn case after they agreed to plead guilty in December.

Steven Webb, of 1408 Nottingham Drive, Kannapolis, originally was charged with receiving child pornography, distributing child pornography, two counts of possessing material containing child pornography and one count of accessing child pornography with the intent to view.

He pleaded guilty to the accessing child pornography charge and was sentenced Tuesday to 10 years in prison, Kannapolis police confirm. He will also have to register as a sex offender.

Tracy Webb, of the same address, was sentenced Wednesday to three years in prison after pleading guilty to misprision of a felony -- failing to notify authorities about her husband’s actions.

Prosecutors agreed to not oppose a motion to dismiss her original charge -- knowingly and willfully making a materially false, fictitious and fraudulent statement and representation to agents from the FBI.

Steven Webb, a former Kannapolis police officer, was accused of receiving and distributing child pornography over the summer. He worked for KPD from June 18, 2008 until his termination on July 31, 2013, after his arrest by the FBI on July 22.

Prosecutors had planned to use testimony from four witnesses who claimed Steven Webb abused them as minors. They also said the minors in the recording featuring Tracy Webb “implicate sexual abuse by both defendants,” according to a document filed in the case.

Kannapolis Police Chief Woody Chavis said an anonymous tip in July led KPD to Steven Webb, and the agency immediately called in the FBI.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Former State Parole Officer James Leone Sentenced for Child Porn

A former senior state parole officer from Bethpage who oversaw officers supervising convicted sex offenders was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison Friday on child pornography charges, officials said.

James Leone, 51, must serve 5 years of supervised release after completing the sentence.

Under federal guidelines, Leone faced 63 to 78 months in prison after pleading guilty in January 2013 to accessing a computer with intent to view child porn.

At the sentencing in Central Islip federal court, U.S. District Judge Arthur Spatt called the graphic preteen videos and pictures that Leone had viewed "bad . . . awful."

Spatt doubted Leone would commit another crime, and noted that he had led an otherwise exemplary life and was receiving therapy, but said prison time was required as punishment and a deterrent to others.

"There was no justification for what I did," Leone told the judge before the sentence was imposed. He expressed remorse and said his actions have scarred him for life.

"I have spent the majority of my life protecting people . . ., protecting children," he said. "I betrayed a trust."

Eastern District prosecutor Allen Bode told Spatt that "everyone should know better," but especially Leone.

"He knew firsthand" about vulnerable children being victimized, Bode said.

Earlier in his career, Leone was a New York City parole officer and a child abuse investigator for the city's child welfare bureau, officials said.

Federal agents came across Leone while investigating people sharing child porn on the Internet, according to court papers.

Leone later admitted that he had been searching for "preteen hard-core" porn for about a year, but deleted anything he watched because he did not want his wife or child to see it, the papers said.

Leone resigned after his arrest in September 2012.

Former Officer Timothy Patterson Sentenced for Child Rape

Former Minerva police officer Timothy A. Patterson was sentenced to nine years in prison Thursday after accepting a plea deal for a crime involving one youth and three children.

The 58-year-old, residing at 105 W. Line St. in Minerva, entered a plea of guilty to amend charges against him consisting of two counts of first-degree felony rape, seven counts of third-degree felony gross sexual imposition and one count of third-degree bribery.

According to Stark County Assistant Prosecutor Katie Chawla, who handled the case, the two rape charges were amended to a different section of the rape statute that eliminated the possibility of Patterson serving a life sentence. That was done in order to permit resolution of the case.

Chawla reported three of the youth are currently 11 years old, and she said one child, who was the basis of the majority of the charges, was 6 when the court determined the rapes began, in 2007. The rapes continued until they were reported to police in 2012.

Patterson was also charged with seven counts of gross sexual imposition and with bribery.

Chawla indicated allegations based on one of the charges he plead to involved Patterson offering something of benefit to the mother of one of the victims if she didn't go to the police.

"Some of the charges Patterson pleaded to involved a game of dirty truth or dare," Chawla also reported.

Chawla indicated the court action was a negotiated plea agreement because the families didn't want their children to have to testify in court. In addition to incarceration, Common Pleas Court Judge Kristin Farmer also sentenced Patterson to be registered as a Tier III sex offender. Tier III offenders are subject to strict address verification, and the community and the victim(s) receive notification whenever such an offender relocates to a new address.

Patterson started working for the Minerva Police Department in 1987 and continued as a full-time and part-time employee there for many years, even being praised for his work at one time as an Officer of the Month. Patterson left the police force to take another job that was not involved in law enforcement.

A secret grand jury indictment was issued against Patterson on Feb. 24 and a warrant for his arrest was issued by Judge Kristin Farmer of Common Pleas Court on the same day. He was taken into custody on March 13 by an unidentified U.S. marshal and Stark County Deputy John VonSpiegel. The arrest was conducted by the Northern Ohio Fugitive Task Force, and VonSpiegel was working as a part of the unit at the time.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Officer Hayden Miller Charged with Rape

Fayetteville police arrested Hayden Miller, 23, Thursday morning on a rape charge.  Miller was employed as a patrol deputy at the Washington County Sheriff's Office.  

According to investigators, in July of 2013, Miller sexually assaulted another man at his home.  The report was not made to police until Wednesday.  The police report states that the man said he fell asleep at Miller's home and woke up to Miller performing oral sex on him.  He also claimed that Miller grabbed his hand, and forced him to fondle Miller.

When questioned by police, the report states that Miller admitted to attending a party that night, and later going back to his home with the man.  Officers said Miller claims he went to sleep in his bed, and woke up with the man in bed with him.  According to the police report, Miller admitted that he then raped the man while he was sleeping.  He faces a felony charge of rape and is being held in the Washington County Jail.

According to the Washington County Sheriff's Office, Miller was fired from his position Thursday, following his arrest.  The sheriff's office says he began working there in 2009 as a dispatcher and was assigned to the patrol division in 2012.  Miller is the third WCSO employee that has been terminated or resigned this month for misconduct.

Former Officer Steven Magruder Indicted for Child Porn

A federal grand jury has handed up an indictment against a former Springfield police corporal for possession of child pornography.

According to the indictment, Steven Robert Magruder was downloading sexually explicit images of children less than 12 years-old to his computer the day a search warrant was executed at this home.

Court documents allege that Magruder received and distributed those images between April 2012 and April of 2013.  A desktop computer and an SD card found near the computer were seized, according to court records.

"The defendant is currently a security officer for a local college.  In addition, he once served as [a] law enforcement officer.  As a retired law enforcement officer and current security official, the defendant would be familiar with and investigated crimes against minors.  Despite the defendant's law enforcement experience and background he has chosen to violate the law he once swore to enforce by not only possessing images of children engaged in sexual acts, but receiving and distributing these images, further victimizing these children."

Magruder, 59, who retired from the patrol division in 2005, had recently been employed as a security officer at Ozark Technical College's Richwood Valley campus in Christian County, according to OTC public information officer Mark Miller.

"He, like other OTC employees, are required to undergo and pass a background check," said Miller.  Miller said he was unable to comment on when Magruder's last day as an OTC employee was "because it is a personnel issue."

"I can tell you he was a part time officer who worked here for about 8 1/2 years.  He primarily worked one day a week," said Miller.

Court records say, "The defendant's criminal conduct only stopped after law enforcement interceded and executed the aforementioned search warrant."

If Magruder, who was released on his own recognisance,  is convicted he could face anywhere from five to 20 years in federal prison.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Officer Justin Ranum & Officer Matthew Booth Accused of Using Excessive Force

Two former Daytona Beach police officers are out of a job after a controversial and violent arrest.

An internal affairs investigation revealed former officer Justin Ranum turned off his body camera during an incident under the Seabreeze Bridge.

In June of 2013, police say 37-year-old Christine Chippewa was approached by Ranum and former officer Matthew Booth in the parking lot of the bridge.

After the officers allege they saw Chippewa put a bag of cocaine in her mouth they took her down, but the body camera video doesn't show the take down and Daytona Beach Police Chief Mike Chitwood says that's a problem.

"Clearly in the middle of the arrest the camera goes blank and then I have a woman with her teeth knocked out of her mouth and headed to the hospital," said Chitwood. "And I have this documentation of 'Oh these things happened,' well why'd your camera go off?"

And according to Chitwood, Ranum turned it off himself.

Meanwhile, after being arrested, Chippewa filed a complaint with the Daytona Beach Police Department claiming that the officers used excessive force during the arrest.
She says Booth put his fingers down her throat, shoved a flashlight in her mouth and kicked her in the head.

"Further investigation into officer Booth and the injuries that this woman suffered are conducive to excessive force and that's not how we operate," said Chitwood.

Chitwood went on to say the actions that were displayed are against station police and that's why both officers are now off the job. Ranum reportedly resigned and Booth was reportedly fired.

Chippewa settled with the city of Daytona Beach for $20,000 and all of her charges were dropped.