Sunday, November 16, 2008

Officer Melvin Jones IV Indicted on Assault

A Baltimore police officer was indicted by an Anne Arundel County grand jury yesterday on first-degree assault charges stemming from a fight at La Fontaine Bleu in Glen Burnie last month.

Melvin Ellsworth Jones IV, 28, was off duty and attending an event Oct. 18 when he got into a dispute with another guest and punched him in the head until he lost consciousness, according to a statement of charges written by the victim, Charles W. Smith III, 45.

"The defendant was seen by several parties striking me in the back of the head with a shiny metal object in or on his hand," Smith wrote.

Smith was taken to a hospital, where he received 12 stitches for cuts, according to the charges. Jones, a Perry Hall resident who has been an officer since 2002, was arrested Oct. 24. He has been suspended without pay, police said.

Timeline Questioned in Drew Peterson Case

Authorities used "vindictive and selective" prosecution in their gun case against former Bolingbrook Police Sgt. Drew Peterson, his legal team argued in Will County Court today.

Peterson, 54, faces felony gun charges for allegedly possessing a modified assault rifle with a barrel of less than 16 inches in violation of state law. Authorities seized the rifle, along with other weapons, after search warrants were executed last November as part of the investigation into the Oct. 28, 2007 disappearance of Peterson's fourth wife, Stacy.

But Peterson's attorney, Joel Brodsky, questioned the timeline of how the gun case unfolded. In February, police revoked Peterson's firearm owner identification card after a judge ruled that his firearms should be returned to Peterson granted that he had a valid FOID card.

And then in May, authorities arrested Peterson for owning the rifle on the eve of learning from the judge whether the guns could be turned over to his son, Stephen, an Oak Brook police officer.
Brodsky is requesting that prosecutors turn over documents leading up to the charges against his client.

"This timeline proves with more than sufficient evidence that the reason to do this is to punish Mr. Drew Peterson for exercising his Constitutional rights," Brodsky said.

Peterson, who maintains his wife ran off, has said that he used the rifle as a SWAT team member for the Bolingbrook police department.

Will County Assistant State's Atty. Dede Osterberger argued against giving the defense "privileged information."

"We strongly argue against this case, judge, because we think that the defense is engaging in a fishing expedition," she said.

Judge Richard Schoenstedt, who was battling a cold and losing his voice, said he would defer his ruling until the next scheduled hearing on Nov. 20.

Former Officer Ramon Borbon Convicted of Sexual Assault, Kidnapping

A former Nogales, Arizona police officer has been convicted of sexual assault, kidnapping, sexual abuse and obstructing a criminal investigation. 40 year old Ramon Borbon will be sentenced on December 12.

The sexual abuse and obstruction charges stem from an August, 2005 incident in which investigators say Borbon forced a 16-year old girl to touch him inappropriately and then threatened her to try and prevent her from reporting the incident to authorities. The sexual assault and kidnapping charges stem from an incident one month later when investigators say Borbon knowingly restrained a 19-year old Nogales woman with the intent to inflict harm, and then sexually assaulted her. Borbon was in uniform during both incidents.

The case was tried in Pima County Superior Court following a mistrial in Santa Cruz County this past May. The case was then ordered moved to Pima County due to the case’s media exposure in Santa Cruz County.