Thursday, October 16, 2008

Former Officer Masaru Shinya Resigns

An ex-Forest Grove police officer agreed never to work in law enforcement again in a deal struck in August with prosecutors.

Masaru Shinya, who patrolled the streets of Forest Grove from 2002 until his resignation two months ago, stepped down after his ex-girlfriend told police he abused her.

Washington County prosecutors said the case started in June, when the woman disappeared. Her family filed a missing person's report and police found her at a domestic violence shelter in Salem.

She told police Shinya abused her and prosecutors started to investigate.

The district attorney said Shinya consistently denied the abuse and said all sexual contact was consensual. However, he admitted to having an anger problem and officials said he also has issues with alcohol.

However, investigators said there's not enough evidence to prove the allegations. When Shinya agreed to resign, prosecutors agreed to drop the case.

Shinya's last known address is an apartment complex on Maywood Drive, but neighbors said he moved out three months ago. Virginia Thorne said Shinya is an honest man and can't imagine him committing the crimes.

"He was very sweet and nice," Thorne said. "He was always friendly and he offered to do anything he could for me."

Forest Grove residents said they have mixed opinions about the deal that was struck.

"I think they need to know all the details before they could assume that would all be correct," said Kurt Copp, who lives in Forest Grove. "And everybody has to be careful because those are large allegations."

"Those are people that we're supposed to be able to count on and then something like that happens," said Jeff Gilstrap, another Forest Grove resident. "It breaks that trust."

According to the resignation documents, the agreement doesn't mean Shinya admitted to the crime.

Officer Brian Slotte Arrested for Having Sex while on Duty


An Astoria police officer accused of having sex with a woman while he was on duty faces misconduct charges.

The State Police say 32-year-old Brian Slotte (slah-tee) was arrested Tuesday on 10 counts of official misconduct, a misdemeanor that carries a year of jail time as a maximum sentence.

Local police say he also faces departmental discipline. He was released from jail and is on unpaid administrative leave.

A prosecutor says the affair went on for a lengthy period, with trysts in the woman's apartment.

Outside investigators and prosecutors were brought into the case, which is routine in such invesigations.


Information from: The Daily Astorian,

Several Tucson Officers Lose Certification to Work

A former Tucson police sergeant accused of drinking and gambling on the job lost his certification to work as a peace officer in Arizona Wednesday.

Robert Lund worked for the Tucson Police Department for more than 20 years before retiring in March.

The incident occurred Jan. 29 when someone called 911 to report a possibly impaired driver near South Harrison Road and East 22nd Street.

Officers found a 1999 Ford Taurus — an unmarked city police car — in a parking lot on the corner, police said at the time.

Lund was asked to give breath samples because officers believed he was intoxicated. The tests yielded blood-alcohol levels of 0.202 and 0.183, far exceeding the DUI level of 0.08. He was arrested on a variety of DUI charges, including extreme DUI.
An internal-affairs investigation determined Lund drank beer at the beginning of his shift and later on in the day while he was gambling on dog races.

Lund also admitted to drinking a bottle of tequila while on duty in his unmarked police car, the documents say.

Octavio Garcia — a former Santa Cruz County Sheriff's deputy — also lost his certification due to a conviction for attempting to smuggle an illegal immigrant into the country.

He worked for the Sheriff's Office from January 2004 until October 2007 when he was fired.

The incident occurred Sept. 25, 2007, when a Mexican man who was riding in Garcia's truck applied for entry into the country at the Nogales port of entry.

Customs and Border Protections officers suspected that the man might have been trying to enter the country illegally, so he was referred for more questioning, according to court documents.

The man admitted that he had no documents to come into the U.S. and that a friend made arrangements for him to be smuggled, court documents show.

He was picked up at a casino near the border by Garcia, who told him to tell officers at the port of entry that he and Garcia were friends and had known each other for two months.

Garcia was indicted on charges of attempted transportation of an illegal immigrant for profit and bringing in an illegal for profit.

He took a plea deal and was sentenced to three years' probation.

The board on Wednesday also voted to initiate proceedings for a former Tucson police officer accused of lying on his application when he didn't disclose information about his connection to a homicide that occurred more than a decade ago.

Frank A. Soto was fired from the Tucson Police Department in October 2007 after working for the agency for three years.

The accusation surfaced in 2005 when a Tucson police sergeant working an off-duty job recognized Soto and recalled that in 1995 he had been implicated in a gang-related drive-by shooting, according to the documents.

One gang member was killed and another was wounded. Soto was not arrested, but one of his passengers was, documents show.

When Soto applied at the Tucson Police Department, he did not answer truthfully about his involvement in serious crimes.

The following questions were asked on the TPD pre-employment questionnaire:

● Did you ever accompany any person who committed any serious crime?
● Have you ever done anything, that if found out, would embarrass this department?
● Has a police officer, detective or any other law enforcement ever questioned you about any incident (whether as a witness, victim, suspect, or arrestee), even an incident for which you were not charged or arrested?
● Have you ever committed or been present during the commission of any criminal offense other than those disclosed in response to prior questions, whether or not detected or reported?

To all of the questions, Soto responded "No."

The sergeant who recognized Soto from the homicide reported his concerns to a supervisor that Soto was a Tucson police officer given his past association with the Brown Mexican Pride gang.

The report made by the sergeant was not acted upon until approximately two years later in 2007.

Upon being confronted, Soto admitted that he should have been truthful to questions regarding his presence in past criminal activity and gang associations, the documents state. However, because he was not accused or charged with a crime, Soto thought it was not relevant.

He was fired for being untruthful, the documents said. He appealed the termination, but it was upheld.He has since re-enlisted in the Army, documents show.

Also under scrutiny is former Pima County Attorney investigator Cecilia I. Sene, who worked for the office for only three months before she resigned, according to Arizona Peace Officer and Standards Training Board documents.

Her resignation stemmed from an Aug. 27, 2006 incident, when Sene was seen drinking a bottle of beer in a vehicle in the parking lot of a local casino, documents state.
When she was approached, Sene became belligerent toward security and responding police officers.

She was arrested on charges of impersonating a public servant and consuming spirituous liquor in a public place after she refused to show identification and identify herself as a police officer, documents say.

The case was turned over to the Pima County Attorney's Office but was sent to the Tucson Municipal Court due to conflict of interest, documents say.

She entered a diversion program and was ordered to attend counseling. Upon completion, the charges were dismissed.

As a result of her actions, Sene was informed that she would be failing her initial probationary period at the Pima County Attorney's Office.

Since then, Sene was arrested again in July on a disorderly conduct charge for a fight with two women at Coach's Bar in Sahuarita.

Sene reportedly was bumping into people on the dance floor and used her purse to strike two women. She also reportedly choked one of them.

The women declined to press charges.

Sene entered into another diversion program in August and if completed, would have the charges dismissed.

Police Chief Conlin Payne Indicted for Child Abuse


Lipscomb’s Police Chief Conlin Payne is on unpaid administrative leave following Thursday’s child abuse indictment.

Hoover Police say the 36 year old Payne is accused of abusing an acquaintances child in October of 2007.

Originally a report was filed with Birmingham Police through D.H.R. and Children’s Hospital last October.

The case was then referred to Hoover Police seven months later.

Lipscomb Mayor Deborah Miller announced Thursday Payne has been placed on unpaid leave pending an internal investigation and the criminal case against him.

“Very disappointed in the Chief. I understand this was something done not on duty and on his own time, but I’m still disappointed,” Miller said outside City Hall Thursday.

Lipscomb’s Police Department included 5 officers in addition to the Chief.

Payne has served as Lipscomb’s chief since 2004.

Chaplain Jady Pipes will take over Payne’s duty in the meantime.

Deputy James Doyle Arrested for Lewd act with Minor

Police arrested a Los Angeles County Sheriff's Deputy on suspicion of conducting lewd acts with a 15-year-old girl.

Wednesday afternoon, detectives of the Brea Police Department and the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department arrested LA County Sheriff's Deputy James Doyle, 45, of Long Beach. Doyle was released after posting $20,000 bail.

On June 20 at 9:30 p.m., Doyle was driving the 15-year-old girl westbound on the 91 freeway near the Gypsum Canyon off ramp in Yorba Linda, said Sgt. Bill Smyser of the Brea Police Department that also serves Yorba Linda. Doyle is a friend of the family.

As they drove, Doyle allegedly touched the 15-year-old inappropriately, Smyser said. The victim told the suspect to stop touching her, which he did, Smyser said.

After she was dropped off at her home the incident was reported to Orange County Child Protective Services who reported the incident to the Brea Police Department, Smyser said.

The victim's identity was not released because of her age and nature of the alleged incident.

Doyle has been relieved of duty with pay, said LA County Sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore.

“Internal affairs (for the LA County Sheriff's Department) will monitor the criminal investigation conducted by the Brea Police Department,” Whitmore said. “At the conclusion of that investigation, internal affairs will begin their own investigation.”

Whitmore said: “this incident could lead to this deputy's termination.”

Sergeant Uthai Dechawiwat Arrested for Murder

A Thai police sergeant charged in the shooting death of a Calgary man was remanded into custody Wednesday.

Leo Del Pinto, 25, died in January after being shot twice in the northern Thai town of Pai. His friend, Carly Reisig, was also shot but survived.

Sgt. Uthai Dechawiwat, off duty at the time of the incident, was arrested and charged with premeditated murder. However, he remained at his job and was transferred to another district.

On Wednesday, Dechawiwat was transported about 800 kilometres from northern Thailand to Bangkok, where he was denied bail and remanded into custody, said freelance reporter Andrew Drummond.

Drummond reported that the trial will be held in Bangkok rather than in northern Thailand.

Del Pinto's family in Calgary has been leading a high-profile campaign to ensure that the shooting be treated seriously in Thailand and that the judicial process be transparent.

Leo Del Pinto, shown in an undated family photo, was shot in the torso and face in northern Thailand. (Ross Fortune) Ernie Del Pinto, Leo's father, said he has mixed feelings on hearing of the officer's jailing.

"Just because he goes to jail is not a closing to me. Closing to me is when the trial ... is done then it's going to be some sort of a close. I've been waiting for this for the longest time," he said.

"It's eight months too late. It should have been done eight months ago, but I'm happy with the results of today's report."

He said the family plans to fly to Thailand for the trial.

Shortly after the shooting, Dechawiwat said he was trying to break up a fight and was struggling with Del Pinto for the gun in self-defence when it accidentally discharged.

Local police collected witness statements in the tourist town that corroborated Dechawiwat's version of events.

But two witnesses stepped forward with a different account. They alleged Reisig was pistol-whipped and then shot in the chest.

According to the two, the gun was then turned toward Del Pinto while he had his hands in the air, Drummond reported.

The witnesses are in protective custody.

In February, Thailand's human rights commission published a report suggesting police botched their investigation into the shootings.

Officer Scott Geving Charged with Sexual Assault

A 10-year veteran of the Stillwater police force is facing criminal sexual assault charges after he allegedly inappropriately touched a woman while in uniform.

Scott Geving, 49, of Marine on St. Croix, was charged with fourth- and fifth-degree attempted criminal sexual conduct and two counts of misconduct of a public officer after he allegedly made unwanted sexual contact with a woman in a Stillwater hotel in the early morning hours of Aug. 20.

To avoid any conflict of interest, the case is being investigated and charged by Dakota County Attorney's Office.

"Charging a police officer with crimes of this nature while on duty is very rare and disturbing occurrence," Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom wrote in a prepared statement.

A 46-year-old female, a front desk employee of the hotel, reported the incidents to the Washington County Sheriff's Office.

According to a press release, Geving arrived at the hotel because he had to do a "walk through." He later kissed the victim on the mouth and then "pushed her against a washing machine ... grabbed her hand and attempted to put her hand on his privates," according to authorities. The victim told police she then pulled away.

Geving told the victim he was done working at 3 a.m. and that he would be back, according to the release. He returned to the hotel around 3:30 a.m., dressed in shorts and a T-shirt and began to ask about the price of a hotel room and asked if she would show him the side doors, according to authorities. The victim told him he needed to leave, at which point he left the hotel room.

Reached by phone, Stillwater Police Chief John Gannaway said they are "just allegations" at this point and that Geving will have his day in court. He said Geving's alleged actions should in no way reflect on the Stillwater Police Department.

Geving is on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure for a case of this matter. Gannaway said he had not other disciplinary issues on his record and that he would not comment any further on the case.