Sunday, June 15, 2008

Officer Alejandro Jamie Drives Drunk and Crashes Motorcycle


An off-duty police officer faces drunken-driving charges after a crash in Manchester late Thursday.

Manchester police responded to a collision involving a car and a motorcycle on Tarrytown Road near Hanover Street at about 9 p.m.

Police said Officer Alejandro Jaime, 36, of Hooksett, rear-ended the motorcycle, which was driven by James McLaughlin, 30, of Manchester.

McLaughlin's wife, Taylor, 31, was a passenger on the motorcycle. Both were thrown from the bike and suffered injuries that were not deemed by police as serious. An ambulance transported the couple to Elliot Hospital and they were later released.

Taylor McLaughlin said she and her husband suffered injuries to their backs, along with scrapes and bruises.

Manchester police said Jaime, who was not injured, identified himself as an off-duty Bedford police officer. Upon conducting a field sobriety test, police said they determined Jaime was impaired.

Police charged Jaime with operating under the influence, saying he has cooperated in their continuing investigation.

Second Arrest for Officer

Albany, NY

A city police officer has been arrested for the second time in two months in connection with a domestic incident.

Officer John Lewis was suspended Friday without pay for 30 days and arrested for allegedly violating an order of protection, which was issued after he was charged with pushing his wife in April.

Lewis turned himself in to authorities and was arraigned late Thursday in City Court on one count of second-degree criminal contempt and was released on $500 bail, according to Lt. Brian Kilcullen, a city police spokesman.

He said Lewis, a 15-year veteran, had a phone conversation with his wife earlier this week. That violated the order of protection. Lewis was previously arrested and charged with harassment, a violation, on April 29 following a physical altercation with his wife over custody of their young son.

Police said Lewis shoved the woman, resulting in his original arrest. The officer was released without bail, but was quickly off duty for 30 days.

In 1998, Lewis was fired by then-Mayor Albert P. Jurczynski for using a racial slur in the presence of three people, including a black YWCA counselor working at the Police Department. Lewis was later reinstated after an arbitrator ruled he was fired without sufficient cause.

Fort Lauderdale Police Officer Arrested

A veteran Fort Lauderdale police officer found himself on the other side of the law Friday.

According to the South Florida Times, Officer Robert Merkel has been charged with falsifying a police report.

Specific reasons surrounding Merkel's arrest are unclear.

But sources close to the investigation revealed Officer Merkel did not properly report some cash he seized from a suspect.

Officer Thomas Clark Accused of Stealing Marijuana

Idaho Falls, ID

A man who worked as both a Gillette police officer and Campbell County Sheriff’s Office jailer has been bound over to District Court on felony drug charges after waiving his preliminary hearing Tuesday in Circuit Court.

Thomas Brent Clark, 23, has been charged with delivering marijuana and conspiracy to deliver marijuana. He was arrested March 31 in Lyman, a town between Rock Springs and Evanston.

Clark is accused of stealing about 1 pound of marijuana from his father’s patrol car in February, then bringing the drugs back to Gillette. His father, a canine officer for the Uinta County Sheriff’s Office, kept marijuana in his patrol car for “training purposes,” according to court documents.

The Police Department hired Clark in January. His last day was March 17, police Lt. Rod Hauge said.

Hauge said he wasn’t allowed to say whether Clark quit or was fired. But according to court documents, Clark told his neighbor he had been “terminated.”

Hauge declined to say whether Clark had been investigated internally, though he stressed that Clark “did not leave because of those charges.”

“I don’t think anybody knew of the charges when he left,” Hauge said. “We didn’t know about that incident at the time.”

He said Clark had passed a pre-employment drug test and a mental exam.

“It’s an unfortunate thing that happened,” Hauge said.

Clark allegedly stole the marijuana in Lyman sometime between Feb. 15-29, according to court documents.

The marijuana was stored in a mesh container inside a lockbox. Clark told investigators he hid the drugs in an abandoned vehicle near his parents’ home before driving back to Gillette.

Once he returned, Clark allegedly gave several ounces of marijuana to Sarah Holcomb, a Gillette woman now serving a prison sentence in the state women’s penitentiary, according to court documents.

The two met while Clark worked as a jailer for the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office. It wasn’t clear whether Holcomb was an inmate when the two met.

Later on, they began chatting on MySpace when Holcomb was on probation, according to court documents. Over time the two began hanging out, Holcomb told investigators.

When Clark told her about the marijuana stashed in his father’s patrol car, she said, “You should grab it,” the court affidavit quoted her as saying.

Clark told investigators he called Holcomb just before he allegedly stole the marijuana and told her what he was about to do. Several days later, he showed up at her workplace, the Gurley Avenue Kwik Shop in Gillette, and gave her 2 ounces of marijuana, according to the affidavit.

The two got high together several times in February while Clark was working for the Police Department. Holcomb told investigators Clark was “not used to smoking marijuana” and that she had to “show him how to do it,” according to the affidavit.

Eric Seeman, an investigator for the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office, wrote that Clark didn’t appear to know a lot about marijuana. Clark described the amount he gave to Holcomb as “filling about four inches of the bottom of a one gallon plastic bag,” according to the affidavit. The drug is generally measured in grams, ounces or pounds.

Clark was still in field training when he allegedly was fired from the Police Department. He had been issued a temporary certificate to work as a police officer but hadn’t been through the police academy yet, Hauge said. An officer must undergo 16 to 18 months of field training and complete the 13-week academy before being certified.

Before joining the Police Department, Clark was a detention officer for the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office. He was hired March 5, 2007, and resigned Jan. 2, Undersheriff Scott Matheny said.

Clark was released from jail after posting a $3,500 bond on Tuesday. An arraignment date hasn’t been set. Campbell County Sheriff’s Lt. Terry Cheirs said Clark had been jailed in Johnson County. He would have been a security risk if he had been jailed in Gillette, Cheirs said.