Friday, October 10, 2008

Corrections Officer Geremy Mullennix Resigns after Giving Alcohol to Minor

A Miami County corrections officer resigned Friday, Oct. 10, a day after he and his brother were charged with allegedly offering and providing alcohol to Piqua High School band members during an alumni band activity at the Sept. 19 football game.

Geremy Mullennix, 30, of Piqua, turned in his resignation to jail and sheriff's office administrators, who were looking into disciplinary action and an internal investigation, Capt. Dave Duchak said.

Mullennix had worked at the jail since May 1999.

He and his brother, Chad Mullennix, 34, of Sidney, face one misdemeanor charge each of furnishing alcohol to a minor and attempted furnishing alcohol to a minor.

Bruce Jamison, acting Piqua police chief, said the two, at the game for a performance by the alumni band with the current high school band, offered alcohol to student band members. One member, a 13-year-old boy, accepted a drink, but will not face charges, Jamison said.

Arraignments for Chad and Geremy Mullennix are scheduled for Oct. 22 in Piqua Municipal Court.

Officer Guillermo Hernandez Arrested for DWI


A police officer was suspended from the force indefinitely on Thursday, almost five months after he was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated, police said.

The action was taken against officer Guillermo "Bill" Hernandez after an internal investigation into his May 17 arrest in north Fort Worth, according to Lt. Paul Henderson, a police spokesman.

In May, a Tarrant Regional Water District officer spotted Hernandez’s truck on Texas 199 and followed him. According to the officer’s report, the truck swerved on and off the road and eventually ran a red light.

The water district officer pulled the truck over after it almost struck another car, according to the report.

The officer reported that Hernandez apologized for running the red light and said he was swerving because the wheel was jerked around as he fought with his girlfriend, who was in the passenger seat.

The reporting officer noted a strong odor of alcohol, as did a sheriff’s deputy who arrived and arrested Hernandez, according to the report.

Hernandez is due back in court in connection with the arrest on Monday, according to court records.

Chris Barrett, an attorney provided for Hernandez by the Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas, said Hernandez planned to appeal his suspension. Barrett declined further comment.

Hernandez has been on restricted duty, and not allowed to carry a badge or gun, since May.

Officer Nicole Drane Arrested for Helping a Serial Bank Robber

An East Point police officer has been arrested for allegedly helping a serial bank robber, East Point police said.

East Point police said they arrested one of their own officers, Nicole Drane, on 15 different counts.

Drane is accused of misusing the police department’s computer to let a suspect in 12 bank robberies know if he was wanted.

VIDEO: East Point Officer Accused Of Helping Robber

Authorities said they took Drane into custody Thursday for violating her oath of office, hindering the apprehension of a suspected criminal and bribery.

The charges are related to Drane’s connection to Malik Dillard, a suspect involved in a string of bank robberies along the East Coast, including some in Georgia. Dillard told the FBI he had help from someone on the inside, according to East Point officials.

Dillard told investigators that he would call Drane after some of the robberies to see if authorities were looking for him.

"Well, it doesn't sit very well but I have to look again, maybe they're not paying them enough at East Point so they have to have some extracurricular activity. But no, it doesn't sit well," said East Point resident Michael Freeman.

Authorities said Drane is currently in custody at the Fulton County Jail.

Drane's first court appearance was Friday at 11 a.m. Her bond was set at $450,000.

More Information:

Judge Curtissa Cofield Arrested for DUI

A Hartford judge was arrested on DUI charges after she struck a state trooper’s vehicle Thursday night.

Curtissa Cofield, a judge in the Hartford Community Court System, was driving on Route 2 just before 11 p.m. when her BMW struck the trooper’s vehicle that was part of the construction pattern on the road, police said.

Both vehicles suffered minor damage, police said.

Police said Cofield requested a transfer to the civil court Friday because of the pending case.

The chief court administrator approved the request, effective next week.

Action, if any, will come from the Judicial Review Council, authorities said. The council is made up of legislators, judges and lawyers.

Authorities said the council can take action on cases if a complaint is made or it can decide on its own to act.

As of Friday afternoon, the Judicial Review Council hadn’t made any decisions or taken any action.

Homicide Det. Sgt Pace Charged a 2nd time for Domestic Assault

Authorities have not said whether the woman Pace is accused of assaulting is his girlfriend or wife... Taylor said only that the deputy who arrived at the house determined there was enough evidence to arrest Pace... Pace also was charged with assault in December 2003 after a dispute with his girlfriend and her daughter, but those charges were dropped...

[Pace is "a member of the Danville Police Department Investigations Division and PRESIDENT of the Fraternal Order of Police.' These pics of him recieving the "presitigious" homicide detective of the year award and officer of the year award are meant to show that there's a good chance that these current charges will be dropped like the last one was.

Officer Lucreshia Carey Accused of helping Inmates


A 22-year-old police officer has been fired after investigators accused her of using her position to provide information to two federal prison inmates: a bank robber and an international con artist who scammed millions of dollars from his victims.

Lucreshia N. Carey was apparently told by the inmates that information she provided, which included copies of certificates of deposit for large sums of money, would help solve a high-profile murder case and, in turn, possibly get her a promotion and earn the inmates and her incarcerated brother an early release.

Instead, the officer, who joined the force in January 2007, is the focus of a federal investigation and was fired effective Tuesday, police say.

FBI spokesman Mark White said Friday that he was unaware of an investigation involving Carey.

But the Star-Telegram obtained a document that details the case and states that federal investigators have told Fort Worth police that they suspect that Carey was part of a conspiracy. She faces federal charges, according to the document.

Carey has denied to internal affairs investigators that she was involved in illegal activity, documents show.

She could not be reached to comment Friday. Her attorney, Terry Daffron Hickey, said Carey plans to appeal her termination next week.

"Because there is still a pending investigation, I am unable to really comment," she said.

Forwarding information

According to the document, Carey’s brother is serving a long sentence at the Federal Correctional Institution in southeast Fort Worth for distributing narcotics. Two fellow inmates learned that Carey was a police officer and asked her brother for her address so they could write to her.

"The inmates explained in the letters that they would like to provide her with information regarding an unsolved high profile murder," the document states. "They possessed important information that would lead to her obtaining a promotion and recognition by solving the crime.

"It would also lead to her brother and the inmates being released early from prison."

The inmates wrote that other federal prisoners had already been released after revealing to authorities portions of information they knew about the crime.

According to the documents, the inmates listed things for Carey to do to solve the crime. The list included researching specific out-of-state addresses to learn owner information, running names through police databases and researching an out-of-state suicide.

The document states that Carey forwarded the information to the inmates through letters to her brother. She never notified police supervisors what she was doing, according to the document.

"Every task given to Officer Carey she performed without question and provided the results back," the document states.

Later, the inmates provided Carey a name and phone number to contact, with instructions to have the person fax her several certificates of deposit, which the inmates said were a major part of solving the murder. The inmates told Carey to deliver the documents to them and to wear her police uniform to circumvent the prison’s visitor policy.

"She was instructed by the inmates to tell prison officials that she was investigating a murder and that they had information for her," the document states.

"Officer Carey received the faxed certificates of deposit that were for large sums of money. She coordinated with her brother and the other inmates on the date and time that she would arrive in uniform with the documents."

An off-duty prison visit

On May 27, Carey’s day off, she dressed in full uniform, took the certificates of deposit to the prison and asked to see the two inmates.

The document states that guards summoned a prison supervisor because uniformed officers usually do not meet with inmates without clearing the visit through prison officials.

Carey told the supervisor that she had prior approval from the prison warden. The inmates’ names had come up during a murder investigation she was conducting, and she believed that they had information about the crime, she said.

She would not, however, provide the supervisor any information about the case, calling her investigation "confidential," the document states.

"The prison warden was contacted who advised that they never spoke to an Officer Carey and apparently she was not being truthful and not there on official business," the document states. "The supervisor turned Officer Carey away who left without pleading her case."

The supervisor later checked the prison computer and learned that Carey had frequently visited her brother. Prison officials notified Fort Worth police, who began an internal affairs investigation.

"Officer Carey chose to wear her police uniform . . . to a federal prison for no other reason than to give the appearance to prison staff that she was there on official business when in fact she was not. She was not truthful with federal prison officials and attempted to bring items into the prison. . ." the document states.

In August, Fort Worth police were notified by an FBI supervisor that federal investigators planned to name Carey as a defendant in a federal indictment.

Michael Shannon sentenced for Stealing Wants to Remain an Officer

Windsor police Const. Michael Shannon was sentenced Thursday to six months of house arrest for stealing $425 from an undercover RCMP officer during a sting operation.

Immediately after Ontario court judge Don Downie handed down the sentence, the Windsor Police Service put Shannon on an unpaid suspension. Since his arrest Oct. 4, 2007, Shannon had been suspended but still collecting a paycheque, in accordance with provincial regulations.

Shannon, 40, pleaded guilty to theft and breach of trust after taking the bait during an orchestrated traffic stop. Windsor police brass enlisted the help of an RCMP officer who Shannon wouldn't recognize, after receiving information more than six months earlier that pointed to Shannon being a dirty cop. He took planted money out of a duffel bag, and despite finding a crack pipe in the car, sent the driver off without so much as a ticket. The 15-year-veteran officer was arrested a few minutes later by waiting officers.

Shannon wrote a seven-page letter read in court by his lawyer Thursday in which he said he wants to remain a police officer. "I want to continue to serve my community," he said.

In the letter, he detailed his lifelong struggle with alcohol and drugs. He said he became a substance abuser at the age of 10 after being sexually abused by a babysitter. He managed to function well in life despite his addictions, getting a college diploma and a university degree before becoming a police officer. He racked up 37 commendations for exceptionally good work.

Despite going into rehab in 2001, he said he kept reverting to drugs and booze after: a bitter divorce; responding to the call in which fellow officer Const. John Atkinson had been shot dead; the stillborn birth of a daughter with an ex-girlfriend; the suicide of one fellow officer; and the cancer death of another.

"There's a saying that into every life a little rain must fall," said the judge. "Const. Shannon has had more than his share of rain."

Shannon's defence lawyer asked the officer be spared jail time and be allowed to serve his sentence in the community.

Crown prosecutor David Foulds, called Shannon's conduct "a terrible stain on the Windsor Police Service" and asked the judge to "be mindful of public perception" and send Shannon to "real jail" for six months to one year.

"I hope this is a compromise between what you were both looking for," said the judge.

But after the judge's ruling, Foulds said he was disappointed with the sentence.

"I would have wished a stronger message to be sent that when police officers commit serious breaches of trust, as this was, that real jail is a distinct possibility."

During his sentence, Shannon will be allowed out of the house from noon to 6 p.m. He will have to complete 24 hours of community service during the six months.

Following his sentence of house arrest, Shannon will be on probation for 12 months, during which time he must complete another 72 hours of community service.

Defence lawyer Andrew Bradie called the sentence fair for someone with an addiction. "Some people will be offended by it, some will understand."

Windsor police Deputy Chief Al Frederick said the department will seek Shannon's termination. He said the department has programs to help officers deal with stress and addictions, but "criminal conduct will not be tolerated at any time."

The department brought Shannon up on Police Services Act charges after his arrest. The hearings had been postponed until his criminal proceedings were complete.

Shannon lost his badge and gun at the time of his arrest. He never spent any time in jail, being released about 90 minutes after his arrest on a promise to appear in court.

He is to appear before a Police Services Act tribunal Oct. 16.

Former County Sheriff Clarence Shepard Accused of Child Molestation

A former Evansville police officer and Vanderburgh County Sheriff is accused of child molestation.

A shocking story out of fort Myers, Florida where Clarence Shepard now lives in retirement.

The details of this incident came out Thursday night in an affidavit filed by the Lee County Sheriff's Office in Fort Myers, Florida.

The report outlines a possible sex crime involving a former Vanderburgh County Sheriff and a girl under the age of twelve.

According to that report, the victim told her mother that Clarence Shepard, 76, touched her inappropriately, made her kiss him and also made her touch his leg.

The girl told deputies the incident happened inside Shepard's house while he was showing her his wife's doll collection. The report also shows that the victim's family is friendly with the Shepards.

Following an interview with Clarence Shepard, sheriff's deputies charged him with one count of lewd and lascivious molestation and booked him into the Lee County Jail in Florida.

Shepherd served the Evansville police department for 20 years before being elected Vanderburgh County Sheriff in 1983.

He was back in Evansville just about a week ago visiting former co-workers and touring the new Vanderburgh County Jail.