Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Officer Charged with Incest, Rape

An investigation by the Royal Solomon Islands Police Professional Standard and Internal Investigation (PSII) has resulted in the arrest of a police officer from Honiara on 20th October 2008.

The Officer has been charged with incest, indecent assault and attempted rape. He has been interdicted from duty and will not be receiving his pay.

The officer has been bailed on condition and is expected to appear in court on a later date.

Source: Police Media Unit

Former Lt. Jon Burge Charged with Police Brutality


The authorities arrested a former Chicago police commander at his Florida home on Tuesday and charged him in a police brutality scandal that contributed to the emptying of Illinois’ death row and that continues to resonate as one of the most racially charged chapters in the city’s history.

Lt. Jon Burge, a former Chicago police commander, was arrested on charges that he lied when he denied abusing inmates two decades ago.

The activities of the former commander, Jon Burge, 60, have been the subject of speculation for decades as scores of criminal suspects, many poor and black, have come forward saying they were routinely brutalized by Mr. Burge and the mostly white officers under his command on the South Side in the 1980s.

Patrick J. Fitzgerald, the United States attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, said at a news conference that Mr. Burge “lied and impeded court proceedings” in 2003 when he provided false written answers to questions in a civil lawsuit that claimed he and other officers had abused inmates.

According to the indictment, Mr. Burge “well knew” he had participated in and was aware of “such events involving the abuse or torture of people in custody,” including wrapping inmates’ heads in plastic to make them feel as if they were suffocating.

The statute of limitations on the suspected torture has expired, but Mr. Fitzgerald said Mr. Burge would still be held accountable.

“There is no place for torture and abuse in a police station,” the prosecutor said. “No person is above the law, and nobody — even a suspected murderer — is beneath its protection.”

Calls for Mr. Burge’s prosecution, which were sounded for years, grew louder after a 2006 report by special state prosecutors supported what dozens of inmates had said about being brutalized in jail. The report took more than four years and included more than 700 interviews.

This year, the city approved a $20 million settlement with four former death row inmates who said they had been abused under Mr. Burge.

After posting $250,000 bond, Mr. Burge left the federal courthouse in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday. He said only that he planned to plead not guilty to two counts of obstruction of justice and one count of perjury. He is scheduled to be arraigned Monday in Chicago.

If he is found guilty, Mr. Burge faces up to 20 years in prison for each obstruction of justice charge, five years for perjury and a $250,000 fine on each count.

The investigation is continuing, and may result in more indictments, officials in Mr. Fitzgerald’s office said.

“It’s a start, after 25 years,” said a defense lawyer, Flint Taylor, who has called for investigations of Mr. Burge and his officers for decades. “After years of struggle, maybe a modicum of justice will be attained here.”

The indictment could mean a great deal of work for prosecutors here, with defense lawyers expected to line up to file motions to overturn convictions during Mr. Burge’s tenure.

“I believe there are 40 to 50 cases where there was evidence of torture and the primary evidence against the defendant was a confession,” said Andrea D. Lyon, a law professor at DePaul University and former head of the Illinois Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

Mayor Richard M. Daley was the Cook County state’s attorney during the time of many of the accusations against Mr. Burge.

“Obviously, the Burge case recalls a terrible chapter in our city’s history,” Mr. Daley said. “Some of the police behavior at that time was detestable, which is why steps have been put into place to ensure that the kinds of acts associated with Jon Burge never happen again.”

Monique Bond, a spokeswoman for the Chicago Police Department, which fired Mr. Burge in 1993, said the department supported the findings in the indictment.

Four Officers Investigated for Allegedly Extorting Money

MANILA, Philippines

Four Manila policemen will be investigated for allegedly extorting P800,000 from a Korean in exchange for his release after being jailed for illegal drug possession.

The chief of the Manila Police District (MPD), Chief Superintendent Roberto Rosales, ordered the probe on Tuesday of four cops detailed at the Anti-Illegal Drugs Division.

The policemen, whose identities were withheld pending the investigation, reportedly arrested 32-year-old Sungjun Byun on October 17 for illegal drug possession. According to earlier reports, a fellow Korean, Seong Mun Kin, also 32, mediated to have Sungjun released. It was allegedly Seong who gave the money to the four policemen.

Seong's arrest was not reported to the MPD, according to Chief Inspector Audie Madrideo, chief of the MPD District Police Intelligence Operations Unit (DPIOU).

Police learned of the alleged extortion only on Sunday (October 19) when Seong held Sungjun captive in the latter's own room at the Manila Pavilion in Malate, Manila. According to Sungjun, Seong was demanding payment of the P800,000 before letting him go.

Sungjun called his girlfriend to ask for the money. The girlfriend reported the incident to the police attache of the South Korean Embassy, Consul Park Jangsik, who then asked for police assistance.

Police went to the hotel to arrest Seong, who will be charged with kidnapping.

- GMANews.TV

Lt. Jon Burge Shames his Badge


A prosecutor says a former top Chicago police officer "shamed" his uniform and badge by allegedly covering up the torture of murder suspects.

A federal indictment accuses former police Lt. Jon Burge of perjury and obstruction of justice, for denying that he and detectives under his command had tortured people suspected of murder.

The denial came in 2003, when Burge was questioned in a civil rights lawsuit filed by a man who said Burge and other detectives had tortured him. Madison Hobley said the officers had covered his head with a typewriter cover until he couldn't breathe.

Hobley was suspected of setting a fire that killed seven people, including his wife and son. He says a confession that was introduced at his trial was fabricated by police. He was convicted and spent 13 years on death row, but was pardoned in 2003.

Burge was arrested this morning at his Florida home. The arrest caps a long controversy over allegations that beatings, electric shocks and death threats were used against suspects.

The allegations contributed to the decision by Illinois Governor George Ryan in 1993 to empty the state's death row.

Deputy Gilbert Barrientos Jr Arrested for Possessing Child Porn


A Bexar County Sheriff’s deputy is behind bars accused of possessing child pornography.

Gilbert Barrientos Jr., 38, was arrested after his wife called police.

Police say she found two computer thumb drives with more than 200 illegal pictures on them.

Barrientos is being held on a $10,000 bond. He is being kept away from other inmates.

Former Commander Jon Burge Arrested for Obstruction of Justice

Former Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge was arrested today at his home in Florida on federal obstruction of justice and perjury charges for allegedly lying about whether he and other officers under his command participated in torture and physical abuse of suspects in police custody dating back to the 1980s. Burge was charged with two counts of obstruction of justice and one count of perjury in a three-count indictment that was returned under seal by a federal grand jury last Thursday, Oct. 16. 2008, and unsealed following his arrest.

The indictment was announced jointly by Grace Chung Becker, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the U.S. Justice Department's Civil Rights Division, Patrick J. Fitzgerald, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, and Robert D. Grant, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Today's indictment alleges that Burge lied and impeded court proceedings in November 2003 when he provided written answers to questions, known as interrogatories, in a civil lawsuit alleging that he and others tortured and abused people in their custody.

"Throughout our nation, our fine law enforcement officers make daily sacrifices in the pursuit of justice," said Acting Assistant Attorney General Becker. "It is imperative that we take these charges seriously but also bear in mind they do not reflect upon the conduct of the vast majority of law enforcement officers."
"There is no place for torture and abuse in a police station. There is no place for perjury and false statements in federal lawsuits," said U.S. Attorney Fitzgerald. "No person is above the law, and nobody - even a suspected murderer - is beneath its protection. The alleged criminal conduct by defendant Burge goes to the core principles of our criminal justice system."

"Everyday Chicago Police Officers execute their sworn duties lawfully with great skill, courage and integrity," said Special Agent-in-Charge Grant. "Sometimes they do so with great peril, as we have been sadly reminded in recent weeks and months.

But police officers have a special duty which is underscored by today's announcement. Police officers don't serve the public as judge and jury and they have a special responsibility to care for those within their custody, regardless of their alleged crimes. Today's announcement brings great shame on the career of retired Commander Jon Burge. These charges will not erase the pain within our Chicago community, but perhaps it can help begin the healing process."

Burge, 60, of Apollo Beach. Fla., is expected to have an initial appearance later today in Federal Court in Tampa. No date has yet been set for him to appear in U.S. District Court in Chicago, where he will face prosecution.

According to the indictment, Burge was a Chicago Police Officer from 1970 to 1993. He served in several jurisdictions throughout the city, as a detective from 1972-1974, a sergeant from 1977-1980, and a lieutenant commanding detectives working in the Area Two violent crimes unit from about 1981-1986 . Subsequently, he was commander of the Bomb and Arson Unit, and, later, commander of Area Three detectives. Burge was suspended by the Chicago Police Department in 1991 and fired in 1993.

The indictment alleges that during the time Burge worked in Area Two, he was present on one or more occasions for, and at times participated in, the torture and physical abuse of persons in police custody. It is further alleged that during the time he worked as the lieutenant supervising Area Two violent crimes detectives, Burge was aware that detectives he supervised, on one or more other occasions, engaged in torture and physical abuse of people in their custody.

Chicago Police Department regulations, as well as state and federal law, prohibit torture, physical abuse and other use of excessive force by police officers.

Since 1991, a series of police brutality civil lawsuits have been filed alleging that Burge and other detectives and police officers under his command participated in torture and abuse of suspects. One such case, Hobley v. Burge, et al., filed in 2003 in U.S. District Court in Chicago, alleged that plaintiff Madison Hobley was tortured and abused by police officers at Area Two headquarters in January 1987 in order to coerce a confession. The suit included an allegation that police officers had placed a plastic bag over Hobley's head until he lost consciousness.

The Hobley lawsuit claimed that Burge was aware of a pattern of torture and abuse at Area Two police headquarters. The indictment does not, however, allege that Hobley was tortured or abused.

During the discovery process in civil litigation, Hobley's attorneys served Burge with written interrogatories. Burge's written responses are the basis for today's charges, which allege that Burge corruptly obstructed, influenced and impeded an official proceeding by signing answers containing false statements in response to two interrogatories in the Hobley litigation.

If convicted, Burge faces a statutory maximum penalty of 20 years in prison on each count of obstruction of justice, five years for perjury, and a $250,000 fine on each count.

The investigation is continuing. An indictment contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jeff Cramer, Barry Miller and Sergio Acosta, and Civil Rights Division Trial Attorney Betsy Biffl.

SOURCE U.S. Department of Justice

Officer Donald Mcfarland Arrested for Domestic Dispute

A Fort Worth police officer was arrested Saturday on accusations that he waved a gun at his wife and her friend during a domestic dispute.

Donald Dwayne McFarland, 50, faces charges of deadly conduct and assault by offensive contact or threat.

According to a police report, McFarland was arrested after police were called to a west Fort Worth residence about 8:30 p.m. He is accused of waving a pistol and making threats against his wife and her friend, both 51.

Lt. Paul Henderson, police spokesman, said McFarland has been placed on restrictive duty.

"An internal investigation has been launched into the matter," Henderson said.


Salem Police Investigate Officer Throwing Suspect to Ground

Salem police are investigating an arrest in which an officer is shown on video throwing a suspect to the ground.

Salem Police Chief Robert St. Pierre tells The Salem News that Patrolman Larry Puleo has been assigned to "internal duties" until an internal investigation is completed.

The video being shown on the Web site You Tube shows an officer grabbing a young man by the throat and throwing him to the ground as he makes an arrest.


Salem police said Monday the incident happened early Friday as officers were dispersing crowds leaving downtown bars.

Police said just before that arrest, the officer had been punched in the face and kicked while making another unrelated arrest.


Information from: The Salem News, http://www.salemnews.com
More Information: http://wbztv.com/local/salem.police.arrest.2.844893.html

Probationary Officer Ryan Honnette Arrested for Vehicular Manslaughter

A 27-year-old Stockton Police Department probationary officer has been placed on administrative leave after he was arrested over the weekend on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and felony drunken driving.

Ryan Honnette of Denair had completed police academy and was nearing the end of the department's 18-month probationary officer program, Officer Pete Smith, a Stockton Police Department spokesman, confirmed.

"He had been here for very nearly that amount of time," Smith said.

Because of the personnel issues, Smith would not comment further other than to confirm that Honnette was on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation into the fatal crash outside of La Grange.

Honnette shortly after 4:40 p.m. Saturday was driving a sport utility vehicle south on Lake Road a little more than a mile south of state Highway 132 southwest of La Grange, California Highway Patrol Officer Tom Killian said. The vehicle was going at about 40 mph.

"Due to intoxication, he was unable to negotiate the curves in the road," Killian said of Honnette.

The sport utility vehicle drifted onto the west shoulder, Honnette overcorrected and the vehicle ended up in the oncoming lane, Killian said. Honnette overcorrected again, causing the vehicle to return to the west shoulder, off the road and through some bushes before Honnette overcorrected again and lost control.

The vehicle returned to the southbound lane of the road where it overturned once and came to rest on the driver's side, Killian said.

Matthew Miller, 25, of Turlock was a rear-seat passenger and was not wearing a seatbelt. He was thrown from the vehicle through a rear window, Killian said. Miller was taken to Oak Valley Hospital in Oakdale and pronounced dead.

Other passengers in the vehicle, Blake Gonsalves, 25, Wesley Romero, 27, and Timothy Robero, 25, all of Turlock, were not seriously hurt. Only Honnette and Gonsalves were wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash.

Honnette was arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and felony drunken driving, Killian said, but Honnette's name does not appear on the Stanislaus County Jail in-custody Web site.

More Information: http://www.my58.com/news/17774295/detail.html

Officer Christopher Buckley Arrested for Raping 13-year-old girl

A ten-year veteran of the New Orleans Police Department was arrested for the rape of a 13-year-old girl, Superintendent Warren Riley announced in a statement.

Christopher Buckley, 36, was with the Fifth District before resigning Tuesday, said NOPD spokesman Bob Young.

Buckley was arrested following an investigation by the NOPD’s Public Integrity Bureau, police said.

The officer was taken to Central Lock-Up Tuesday around 4 p.m., booking him for rape, police said.

Police said that the investigation into the crime is still ongoing.

Constable Timothy Hesketh Accused of Fracturing the Back of a Prisoner

A police officer accused of fracturing the back of a prisoner when he slammed on the brakes of a police wagon went on trial in Palmerston North yesterday.

Constable Timothy Edward Hesketh's "braking without cause'' last November also sent one colleague flying from his seat and swear words flying from others, the High Court heard.

The Crown alleges Hesketh's actions were responsible for the paralysis of 46-year-old Mark Edwards, who suffered a fractured dislocation of his spine.

It left him with loss of sensation and paralysis of all four limbs, the jury was told.

Hesketh is charged with reckless disregard causing grievous bodily harm and faces a maximum seven years' imprisonment if convicted.

Mr Edwards had been arrested for trespassing at a former girlfriend's home after five police officers were called to assist.

After a 40-minute struggle to extricate an intoxicated Mr Edwards from the Palmerston North address, he was arrested and loaded into the police wagon about 1.30am on November 4, 2007, the court heard.

Three officers gave evidence that the drunk man had walked unsupported into the back of the vehicle to sit on the bench seat.

It was not until they arrived at the police station that Mr Edwards was found lying face-down on the van floor, unable to move on his own.

It took four officers to carry the 183cm, 110kg man into the cells.

But Hesketh claimed Mr Edwards was dragged from the address and placed in the footwell of the van's compartment in the recovery position, Crown prosecutor Ben Vanderkolk said.

Hesketh ``overstated the aggression and resistance'' of Mr Edwards before the arrest after he heard him making a complaint of police brutality against him on the phone to a police operator, Mr Vanderkolk said.

Constable Jymahl Glassey said that when Hesketh braked at the intersection of Albert and Church streets, he left his seat and hit a barrier rail in front enough for another officer to ask if he was okay.

Back at the station, Mr Edwards' persona had changed and he noticed blood on his face, he said.

``In the cells he looked puffed and tired and lacking energy ... he was a different man. I thought maybe he had heart problems or something.'' Mr Glassey said.

Defence counsel Susan Hughes QC read from Mr Glassey's police report that Mr Edwards' injuries appeared to be as a result of being taken to ground and his head hitting the pavement.

``That's what I believed happened at the time, I've used the words, `appear to be as a result','' Mr Glassey said.

Constable Matthew McFlynn said he too went forward in his seat when Hesketh braked.

``I think I said `Shit' because I got a fright and I think someone else said the same thing.''

He too saw injuries on Mr Edwards after the trip in the wagon.

``His feet and his legs looked limp ... he couldn't walk himself.''

Each officer who gave evidence said they considered Hesketh to be honest and level-headed in carrying out his duties.