Saturday, October 31, 2009

Trooper Arturo Perez Charged with Using Excessive Force

A state trooper has retired and is being criminally investigated by the Texas Rangers after he allegedly used excessive force during a DWI arrest earlier this month on the Dallas North Tollway.

Department of Public Safety officials say that the incident involving Trooper Arturo Perez, 42, was captured on his in-car video camera. The Texas Rangers will turn their findings over to Dallas County prosecutors, according to a media release.

"The videotape is one of the most horrific videotapes I've ever seen," said Randall Isenberg, an attorney representing the woman arrested that night.

On Oct. 23, DPS Director Steven McCraw began the process to fire Perez over misconduct that included the excessive force incident, the release said. He retired before that process was complete.

Perez told officials that he encountered the 22-year-old Plano woman shortly before 3 a.m. on Oct. 11. The woman had been involved in an accident near Lemmon Avenue, smelled of alcohol and failed several field sobriety reports, he told officials.

He also told officials that she resisted him throughout the encounter and tried to walk away from him before he handcuffed her. He repeatedly told her to stop resisting or she would get hurt.

He told officials that as he escorted her to his squad car, she jerked away violently and threw her elbow up, so he jerked her toward the ground. She instead struck a concrete ledge, injuring her chin. He denied using excessive force.

"I did not intend for [the woman] to be injured in any way," he wrote.

Isenberg, a former prosecutor and state district judge, said she was not drunk and was not physically resisting Perez. He said she was trying to explain to him that a drunken friend whom she was taking home had jerked on the wheel, causing her to hit a concrete wall.

"The officer is handcuffing her and it's apparent that she's not happy with being arrested," Isenberg said. "She uses inappropriate verbal words to express her displeasure."

Isenberg, who has viewed the in-car video, said Perez pushes his handcuffed client chin-first into the ledge, causing her feet to leave the ground.

"She crumples to the ground like a sack of potatoes," Isenberg said. "Even if she's trying to resist, he doesn't need to use any force; all he needs to do is ask his partner standing three feet away to help him."

Perez joined the DPS in 2006 and previously worked for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice for nearly 16 years.

Detective Kevin Spellman Charged with Killing Pedestrian While Drunk Driving

One day after the arrest of an off-duty police detective on charges he killed a pedestrian while driving drunk, the authorities provided more details about the five-hour gap between the accident and the time the police were able to obtain a sample of the detective’s blood, saying the detective’s case was processed more quickly than is normal in such cases.

Prosecutors said the detective, Kevin C. Spellman, 42, a 22-year veteran of the force, was driving a Chevrolet Malibu that struck and killed Drana Nikac, 67, as she crossed Kingsbridge Avenue in the Bronx early on Friday morning. He was charged with second-degree vehicular homicide, criminally negligent homicide and driving while intoxicated.

It was the second time in five weeks that an off-duty police officer was charged with killing a civilian when driving drunk. On Sept. 27, Officer Andrew Kelly, 30, was arrested after the sport-utility vehicle he was driving struck Vionique Valnord-Kassime as she tried to flag a cab, the authorities said.

In that case, prosecutors said Officer Kelly refused a breath test at the scene, and a blood test seven hours later showed he had no alcohol in his system. He has pleaded not guilty.

Police officials said they worked quickly to process Detective Spellman’s case in the hours between the 6:30 a.m. accident, and noon, when they drew the blood sample. Steven Reed, a spokesman for the Bronx district attorney, said his office also moved promptly, and he disputed the idea that the time frame of more than five hours represented any kind of delay.

“Focusing solely on a time line in a vacuum is an oversimplification of what’s involved,” Mr. Reed said in a statement. “The mere notification of an incident is not the same as having all of the information that the law requires before a search warrant can be issued.”

On Friday morning, a sergeant at the scene told prosecutors that Detective Spellman’s speech was slurred, his eyes were glassy and he smelled of alcohol, according to the text of the criminal complaint. About 7:40 a.m., another officer heard Detective Spellman say that had not seen the victim, who “came out of nowhere,” the complaint said.

At 8 a.m., Detective Spellman refused a breath test at the scene, according to Paul J. Browne, the Police Department’s chief spokesman. Shortly afterward, police officials contacted prosecutors to make them aware of the case, Mr. Browne said.

Detective Spellman was taken to the 45th Precinct station house, and by 9:46 a.m., he was videotaped refusing a second, more sophisticated breath test, Mr. Browne said.

With that refusal, police officials and prosecutors set about trying to obtain the blood sample.

Shortly after 10 a.m., a sergeant who had been at the scene of the accident arrived at the Bronx district attorney’s office to work with prosecutors on an application for a court order. Mr. Reed said that by law, a police officer was required to request such an order in person.

In the meantime, officials with the Internal Affairs Bureau ordered Detective Spellman be taken to Jacobi Medical Center to await a blood test.

State Supreme Court Justice Harold Adler signed an order to take the detective’s blood at 11:39 a.m. Friday, said Kali Holloway, a spokeswoman for the State Office of Court Administration.

By noon, Detective Spellman’s blood was drawn, the authorities said.

Sgt Chad Lakey Arrested for Sexual Battery on Child

An Osceola sheriff's sergeant arrested Friday on a domestic child-sex charge was moved Saturday to the Orange County Jail for his protection.

Chad Lakey, 33, who comes from a family of law officers, was arrested after a South Carolina woman told police he molested her daughter. The incident is said to have happened at Lakey's St. Cloud home in summer 2008. It was reported three weeks ago, St. Cloud Capt. Bret Dunn said.

Bail on the charge of domestic sexual battery of a child older than 12 is $2,500. Lakey, a former St. Cloud police detective, was placed on administrative leave while the Sheriff's Office conducts an internal investigation, department spokeswoman Twis Lizasuain said Saturday.

Lakey is married to St. Cloud police Sgt. Dhalyn Lakey, and his father, Jim Lakey, is a retired Kissimmee police sergeant who lost in the Republican primary for Osceola sheriff in 2004.

Officer David Reeves Charged with Armed Robbery

An ex-Riverside police officer accused of carrying out several off-duty armed robberies in Moreno Valley and Riverside while still on the force pleaded not guilty today to multiple felony charges.

David R. Reeves, 28, of Moreno Valley, is charged with four counts of armed robbery, two counts of attempted armed robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, attempted kidnapping, burglary, being in possession of stolen property and enhancements alleging the use of a gun in the commission of a felony.

He's being held in lieu of $500,000 bail at the Robert Presley jail in Riverside.

Reeves, along with his two lawyers, appeared before Riverside County Superior Court Judge Richard Fields, who set a felony settlement conference in the case for Dec. 12.

The defendant was arrested Oct. 14 after allegedly trying to rob an AutoZone on Sunnymead Boulevard in Moreno Valley. He was terminated from the Riverside police force, after seven years on the job, the day after his arrest.

"These alleged crimes are extremely serious," Riverside police Sgt. Jaybee Brennan said when Reeves was charged. "Quite frankly, if the allegations are true, nobody here will be standing by him. A lot of people are upset. It's a shock."

The first robbery occurred Oct. 13 at an AutoZone at 19486 Van Buren Blvd. in south Riverside.

The criminal complaint alleges that the following day, Reeves robbed three men, one of whom he allegedly tried to abduct, and then broke into and attempted to rob the AutoZone at 23510 Sunnymead Ave. in Moreno Valley, where he was apprehended.

He was carrying a stolen Itratec 9 mm handgun at the time of his arrest, according to court papers.

If convicted on all counts, Reeves could face more than 30 years in prison.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Correction Officer Timothy Munroe Charged with Beating Two Inmates

A New York City correction officer has been charged with beating two inmates at Rikers Island in separate incidents.

Timothy Munroe pleaded not guilty to an indictment charging him with assault and falsifying records.

Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson says Munroe punched an inmate in the face and broke his nose as punishment for disruptive behavior on Dec. 12, 2008.

The inmate reported the alleged assault after he was taken to a clinic.

In another incident, Munroe is accused of punching another inmate in the face over an argument on Jan. 24. He was also accused of filing a report with fake details on the incident.

Munroe's attorney didn't immediately return a call seeking comment.

He faces four years in prison, if convicted.

Officer Ismael Ramirez Charged with Coercing Woman to Have Sex

A Medina police officer has been accused of coercing a woman to have sex to make charges against her go away.

Officer Ismael Gaston Garcia Ramirez is charged with official misconduct. The 30-year-old is scheduled to be arraigned Nov. 12 in King County Superior Court.

Documents from Issaquah police say he pulled over the woman in November 2008 and found a small amount of marijuana in her car.

Prosecutors say he told her she was sexy and could make the charges go away.

About a week later they met at an Issaquah pub and he took her to his home where he is accused of having sex with her over her objections.

He asked the prosecutor to drop the marijuana charge because the amount was too small.
More Information:

Trooper Casey Myers Arrested for DUI

What happens in Pullman obviously doesn't stay in Pullman.

A State Patrol trooper who works in King County is on administrative leave after being charged with drunken driving near Washington State University earlier this month.

Casey Myers, 26, was arrested for DUI shortly before 3 a.m. on Oct. 9, according to the Moscow-Pullman Daily News. According to the newspaper report, Myers was stopped by Pullman police for failing to stop at a stop sign.

State Patrol Capt. Jeff DeVere tells The Seattle Times that Myers was on vacation when he was stopped. When Myers returned to work on Oct. 16 he was placed on administrative leave with pay.

Myers has been with the State Patrol for four years, DeVere said. The trooper will remain on administrative leave until after the State Patrol completes its own investigation, DeVere said.

Myers was the arresting officer in several pending DUI cases in King County, said Dan Donohoe, spokesman for King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg. The cases won't likely be impacted by his arrest, Donohoe said.

Court Rules Fatal Tasering Wasn't Justified

The 11th Circuit rebuked Orlando officers for Tasering an unarmed man eight to 12 times in two minutes, causing his death. Judge Stanley Marcus said the repeated shocks were "grossly disproportionate to any threat posed and unreasonable under the circumstances."

According to an eye witness, Anthony Carl Oliver Sr. flagged down officer Lori Fiorino from a grassy median. She allegedly pulled out her Taser gun and asked him what was wrong. "They're shooting at me," he told her, and pointed across the street.
Fiorino tried to calm him down, and later said he had been "very fidgety."

The witness said Oliver wasn't belligerent and threatened or cursed at the officer.

Fiorino called for backup, and she and responding officer David Burk considered taking Oliver in for a psychiatric evaluation, because they thought he might be mentally unstable.

When Burk tried to get Oliver to cross the street, Oliver "struggled and pulled away from him," according to the ruling.

Without warning, Fiorino Tasered him in the stomach, bringing him to the ground. Once the five-second pulse wore off, she Tasered him again. The witness said Oliver never got up after the first Tasering, and never hit, punched, kicked or threatened the officers.

Oliver, who was lying on the hot asphalt, allegedly screamed that it was "too hot." Fioriono said she may have Tasered Oliver 11 or 12 times, explaining that she kept pulling the trigger until he stayed on the ground. Her Taser log showed eight times in two minutes, with each shock lasting five seconds.

After officers handcuffed Oliver, he began foaming at the mouth, according to Fiorino. She said she was unable to remove all the Taser prongs from his body.

Paramedics put him on a stretcher and loaded him into an ambulance, where he began to have a seizure. He was pronounced dead at Florida Hospital, a result of "being struck by a Taser," according to a forensic pathologist.

Amy Shirley Oliver filed suit on behalf of Oliver's estate, claiming the officers' use of excessive force had killed him.

Fiorino and Burk asked the district court to dismiss the case on the basis of qualified immunity, but the district court refused.

The Atlanta-based appeals court affirmed.

"The justification for the repeated use of Taser force, at least beyond an initial Taser shock, was minimal," Judge Marcus wrote.

Oliver was not accused or suspected of any crime, posed no immediate threat to officers or others, did not act belligerently, was not trying to flee, and
was "largely compliant and cooperative with officers," Marcus noted.

"We agreed with the district court's determination that the force employed was so utterly disproportionate to the level of force reasonably necessary that any reasonable officer would have recognized that his actions were unlawful," the court concluded.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Chief Randy Rizzo Arrested for Public Intoxication

Atlantic Beach police chief Randy Rizzo admitted he drank ''too many beers'' and that led to his arrest Wednesday morning by Horry County officers outside a pool hall.

Rizzo, 39, of Conway was charged with public disorderly/public intoxication and was later was suspended from his position, according to Town Manager William Booker.

''That officer had every right to charge me,'' Rizzo said. ''I'm guilty. I'm not going to deny the fact. I'll pay like anyone else.''

Rizzo was arrested soon after the officer, Scott Calderwood, saw Rizzo drive his truck in a parking lot. Rizzo said he told the officer he was moving his vehicle to a safer place and had called his wife to pick him up, but got a verbal altercation with another officer that led to his arrest.

''I was trying to be a good Samaritan and not do anything illegal,'' Rizzo said. ''Unfortunately the officer got upset with me.''

Rizzo was booked into J. Reuben Long Detention Center at 3:04 a.m. and released at 4:03 a.m. after posting $262 bail.

Booker said he spoke with Rizzo on Wednesday morning before suspending him.

''He told me he was guilty of having too much to drink,'' Booker said. ''He said he was guilty. People here are pretty disappointed this happened.''

Atlantic Beach Town Councilman Donnell Thompson said ''wow'' when he learned of Rizzo's arrest.

''I would expect Booker to make the right decision,'' Thompson said of Rizzo's future.

It was not immediately known if Rizzo will be paid during the suspension, Booker said. ''I'm leaning toward it being unpaid,'' Booker said.

Booker said he plans to talk with Horry County officials before determining the length of the suspension.

''They just have to determine if I can do this job because of this charge,'' Rizzo said.

Despite telling officers at the scene he was drinking, Rizzo was not given a field sobriety test at the scene, said Sgt. Robert Kegler of Horry County police.

''The officer made the decision he made,'' Kegler said. ''Not every traffic stop is the same.''

The suspension leaves Atlantic Beach with three police officers. Booker said he would speak to the officers before determining if the town needs to ask Horry County police for patrol assistance.

Calderwood reported he saw Rizzo walking from Break Room Billiards to the parking lot of the Food Lion at the intersection of S.C. 544 and Myrtle Ridge Road at 1:45 a.m., according to an incident report.

Rizzo was ''extremely unsteady on his feet and appeared almost to fall,'' the report shows.

Rizzo entered a Dodge Ram truck near the Sonic on S.C. 544 when Calderwood approached Rizzo. Rizzo closed the truck door, started the vehicle and drove it to Break Room Billiards, the officer reported.

Calderwood reported that he asked Rizzo if he had too much to drink and Rizzo replied, ''No.''

Rizzo began slurring his words and told the officer he had been drinking.

Rizzo asked Calderwood twice if he knew who he was and the officer replied that he did and that ''it didn't matter,'' the report shows.

The report shows that Rizzo told Calderwood he would call his wife to pick him up, but later Rizzo got back in the truck and drove past the officer's vehicle.

Rizzo disputes he was in his vehicle twice and that's what led to the argument and his arrest.

''I didn't get in my vehicle twice,'' Rizzo said. ''I may have gone out once to get cigarettes or something.''

Rizzo said he was moving his truck closer to Break Room Billiards because he felt it would be safer there overnight.

The officer reported that he stopped the vehicle in the parking lot and that Rizzo attempted to exit. Rizzo was asked if he was carrying a ''duty weapon,'' the report shows.

The officer's supervisor arrived and Rizzo became ''loud and upset'' before he was arrested.

Calderwood reported that Rizzo asked ''why I was doing this to him.''

''I would have charged me just like anyone else,'' Rizzo said.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Officer Travis Dowell Accused of Choking Daughter

A Tippecanoe County sheriff's officer accused of choking his daughter in a February incident has voluntarily resigned as a sergeant and will be reassigned as a deputy, Sheriff Tracy Brown said today.

The move came as a result of a meeting Monday that Travis Dowell had with Brown.

Brown said he is going to submit a formal letter to the sheriff's office's merit commission next week during the commission's regular meeting.

Dowell last Friday signed a diversion agreement in Tippecanoe Superior Court 5 that could result in all charges against him being dropped as long as he meets certain conditions, which include having him stay out of trouble for a year.

Officers were called to Dowell's Clarks Hill home on Feb. 4 after reports of a physical altercation between Dowell and his then 18-year-old daughter, Tara Dowell. The charges against Travis Dowell stemmed from an investigation by the Indiana State Police.

After the February incident, Dowell was demoted from lieutenant to sergeant and was assigned to administrative duties.

Brown said Dowell will continue to work in an administrative job at the Tippecanoe County Jail for the next three to four weeks until he is assigned to a deputy's role.

Brown said the drop in pay from a lieutenant to a deputy is about $7,000 a year.


Officer Candi Perry Indicted for Misconduct & False Reporting

A metro police officer has been suspended without pay after being indicted by a Marion County grand jury.

The officer in question is Community Police Officer Candi Perry.

"She has been indicted on an official misconduct which is a D felony and a false reporting which is an E misdemeanor," said Helen Marchal, chief of staff to the Marion County Prosecutor.

Charges date back to a June homicide investigation with questions about whether Perry had a relationship with a suspect or informant and what she may or may not have known.

"The allegations that were considered by the grand jury included information that Miss Perry impeded a homicide investigation by giving false information to another officer," Marchal said.

Perry was well known as a community officer. She made Officer of the Year back in 2008. She also spoke on WIIH-TV in September of '07.

Backing has grown for Officer Perry. She has a Web page devoted to her. It's called, ‘Please Support Officer Candi Perry.’ It reads; she states she has done nothing wrong. Please help her get back on the beat so she may make a difference in the neighborhood.

24-Hour News 8 tracked down her attorney, former public safety director Robert Turner who said Perry was helping in the investigation and now is being set up.

"What they really wanted her to do was identify the witness, he comes in, homicide then goes out and arrests the suspect, so that they can announce to you guys that we busted this case, not this Spanish liaison lady, but we did it because we're crack detectives and she made 'em mad and they indicted her," said Turner.

No word yet on a further court date for Perry.

Officer Carmine Giarrusso Arrested for False Report

The police have charged a former Cranston police officer with falsely reporting a crime after he complained that an acquaintance struck him with a truck at the intersection of Vine Street and George Waterman Road.

The police said they decided to arrest Carmine Giarrusso, 47, of 38 Lyman Ave., after concluding that he had not been hit by a truck driven by Richard D’Abate as alleged, but intentionally stepped in front of D’Abate’s stopped truck.

D’Abate, 44, of 9 Acorn St., told the police that Giarrusso had been feuding with him for years, going back to when Giarrusso had an affair with D’Abate’s then-wife. He said that when Giarrusso saw the truck at the intersection around 8:30 a.m. Sunday, he intentionally stepped in front of the stopped vehicle and complained that D’Abate had hit him.

An argument ensued, D’Abate said, and when Giarrusso realized that D’Abate was taking pictures, Giarrusso went back to the truck and slapped his hands on the hood. When the arrived, Giarrusso repeatedly urged them to check the hood for fingerprints, saying it would prove that he was hit and that he had to place his hands on the hood to brace himself from the impact. Giarrusso also told police that in addition to causing him pain in his shoulder, hip and knee, D’Abate’s vehicle also struck Giarrusso’s girlfriend, Lorna Casali, who was walking with him, and had also hit her dog.

The police said Giarrusso gestured frequently during their interview and did not act like someone who had just been hit by a truck. In addition, the police said the dusty truck did not show any scuff marks that indicated it had hit something. They said D’Abate’s version was supported by a photo he had taken showing Giarrusso slapping his hands on the truck, and by a statement from another witness. After Giarrusso signed a formal complaint at the police station, he was arrested on charges of making a false report of a crime. He was released later on $1,000 personal recognizance.

Officer Candi Perry Charged with Giving False Report

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Officer Candi Perry is a former officer of the year, speaks Spanish fluently and is accused of official misconduct and false reporting during a homicide investigation.

It was on June 25th that a homeless man - Herman Baker - was found shot to death in an alley near west 32nd Street and Rader Street. Officer Perry was on duty and her attorney claims was simply trying to shield a potential witness from a potential suspect. However, the grand jury indictment alleges Perry gave false information to another officer.

Perry's lawyer argues she isn't a homicide detective and any mistakes she made were innocent and unintentional.

There is no word of arrests in the Clark murder case.

Perry was arrested Tuesday and released last night on $10,000 bond. She faces a November 4th court date.

Officer Reginald Fisher Arrested Again

A suspended Atlanta police officer indicted for shooting an unarmed man was arrested a second time while out on bond Wednesday.

Officer Reginald Fisher was arrested a second time in Clayton County. Fisher was charged with misdemeanor battery in connection with a domestic incident.

Police said the mother of Fisher's child went to the precinct and accused Fisher of refusing to let her leave his house. The woman said Fisher grabbed her arm and wrist and left bruises.

On Tuesday, Fisher was indicted by a grand jury on charges that he allegedly shot an unarmed Tramaine Miller back in May. Miller was struck in the face and has undergone numerous surgeries to remove the bullet fragments.

The shooting happened on May 5 at the Cityview at Burney Park apartments. Officer Fisher said Miller was acting suspicious and wouldn't obey commands.

University Officer Webster Simmons Charged with Rape and Sodomy

A Duke University police officer is arrested here in Houston county, accused of raping and sodomizing a female acquaintance.

37-year-old Webster Simmons of Rougemont, North Carolina is charged with first degree rape and sodomy.

The Houston County Sheriff's office says Simmons was in Dothan visiting family this past weekend.

Authorities say Simmons drugged his victim at a local bar, used bondage to subdue her, and then raped her in his truck.

Investigators say they found a whip, handcuffs, and other sexual bondage items in Simmons' car.

The victim claims she woke up during the rape, was handcuffed and had a gag in her mouth.

“This is not the type of rapes and sodomies that we commonly see with this type of bondage and this type of material that have been used during the commission of the rape. So it does disturb us, it makes us wonder if this individual has committed these types of crimes anywhere in the United States where may have been,” said Houston Co. Sheriff Andy Hughes.

Simmons has been suspended by Duke University Police.

His bond is set at $120,000 dollars.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Officer Anthony Molinario Arrested for Burglary

A Jean Lafitte police officer has been arrested after allegedly burglarizing a car, said Sheriff Newell Normand.

Normand said 27-year-old Anthony Molinario, of 1120 St. Marie in Luling, faces a charge of simple burglary of a vehicle.

Witnesses, who had parked their vehicle behind the Town Hall and then went for a walk, returned to their vehicle to find a suspect wearing a police uniform inside their vehicle. Normand said the witnesses saw the suspect leave in a reddish colored Jeep SUV. After recording the license plate, Normand said they notified the Sheriff’s Department.

Normand said after an investigation, deputies identified Molinario as the suspect. Molinario denied the accusation, but “showed signs of deception” during a polygraph examination, Normand said.

Molinario is now in the Jefferson Parish correctional center.

Sgt Eric Janik Arrested for Pointing his Weapon in Haunted House

Authorities in Maryland said an off-duty police officer was arrested for pulling his handgun and pointing it at the chest of an actor in a haunted house.

Baltimore County police said Baltimore Police Department Sgt. Eric Michael Janik, 36, pointed his gun at Michael Brian Morrison, 32, who was dressed as "Leatherface" from "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre," while walking through "The House of Screams" in Essex with a female city police officer and his 9-year-old daughter just after 10 p.m. Sunday, the Baltimore Sun reported Tuesday.

County police said Janik, who smelled of alcohol and was slurring his speech after the incident, initially denied pulling out his handgun during the haunted house tour but later told officers he drew the weapon and pointed it at the ground. However, multiple witnesses said he pointed the gun at Morrison.

Janik, who was suspended from the police department, was charged with first- and second-degree assault and reckless endangerment. He was released on $25,000 bail.

Deputy Jessie Alvarez Arrested for Drunk Driving

A Kern County sheriff's deputy is facing drunken driving charges after he was arrested when he stopped while off-duty to assist at a traffic accident.

A California Highway Patrol spokeswoman says after Jessie Alvarez stopped at the accident early Friday on Interstate 5 in Buttonwillow, the CHP officer on the scene suspected the deputy was under the influence of alcohol.

CHP Officer Maria Pagano says the 30-year-old Alvarez was cited and and released on suspicion of misdemeanor drunken driving after being given a breath sample.

Sheriff Donny Youngblood confirmed that Alvarez is the subject of an administrative investigation, but he said he could release no further information.


Information from: The Bakersfield Californian,

Officer Reginald Fisher Charged with Shooting Man in Face

An Atlanta police officer accused of shooting a man in the face while he was off-duty has been indicted by a Fulton County grand jury.

Reginald Fisher was charged Tuesday on two counts of aggravated assault, aggravated battery and violation of oath for allegedly shooting Tramaine Miller at a southeast Atlanta apartment building.

Authorities said Fisher was working an unauthorized off-duty security job when he encountered the victim on the night of May 5.

Miller, who was unarmed, was shot in the lower left jaw.

The 27-year-old was not involved in any illegal activity, as Fisher suspected, but was at the apartment to help his quadriplegic aunt take her medicine.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Officer Troy Meade Charged with Manslaughter

Police officers in the United States rarely face criminal charges for using force in the line of duty.

The first-degree manslaughter charge filed Monday against Everett police officer Troy Meade is unprecedented in Snohomish County history.

Meade, an 11-year veteran, is accused of recklessly causing the death of Niles Meservey, 51. The officer fatally shot Meservey after he refused to get out of his car.

Speculation that Meade could be charged for his actions in the line of duty generated great concern among Everett police officers.

The weeks leading up to the decision have been hard on everyone, a longtime Everett police detective said, speaking on the condition that he not be identified.

The detective said he and other officers understand the importance of a thorough, careful investigation and an independent decision by prosecutors. On the other hand, they also worry that it may be difficult for anybody to truly understand the perspective of the officer involved in this case.

“Troy is in a position where he just has milliseconds to make a decision,” the detective said. “Everybody else has months and months to armchair-quarterback the incident.”

Everett police policy bars anyone from speaking about the matter, with the exception of the police chief or his designee, department spokesman Sgt. Robert Goetz said.

Goetz and Everett Police Chief Jim Scharf on Monday referred calls to Louis Peterson, a Seattle attorney representing Everett.

Peterson didn’t respond for requests for comments. Instead Everett city spokeswoman Kate Reardon sent out a written statement.

Because of pending litigation against the city and the charge against officer Meade, Reardon wrote, “The City and its police department cannot comment further at this time.”

She said, “For today, this is how we have to respond.”

Police are allowed to use force if the officer can reasonably justify that he or she perceives a threat, said David Klinger, an associate professor of criminology at the University of Missouri in St. Louis who studies use of force by police.

“It’s very rare that a police officer is indicted,” Klinger said.

In the vast majority of cases when police use their weapons, the suspect is armed with a knife, gun or other weapon, and someone’s life is in jeopardy, the professor said.

No organization nationally tracks officer-involved violence or the number of times police are charged, Klinger said.

“We don’t even know how many people the cops shoot in the U.S. every year,” he said. “If we don’t know how many time cops kill people, how many times they shoot people, we certainly don’t know how many times police are indicted.”

The most recent case of an officer facing criminal charges was the New Year’s Day shooting by police of an unarmed man at an Oakland, Calif., transit stop. Former Bay Area Rapid Transit officer Johannes Mehserle is charged with first-degree murder in the killing of Oscar Grant, 22. The case is working its way through the courts.

One Everett officer, again speaking so long as he isn’t identified, said there has been some concern that there may be public pressure to file charges against Meade given publicity about other recent police shootings here.

“Some sort of political call to action would be my concern,” the officer said.

Since November, a special task force of detectives has been called on five times to investigate deaths by law enforcement in Snohomish County.

There also is some concern that the decision to charge Meade will affect other officers’ decisions to use lethal force.

“Maybe it will be in the back of their minds and they’ll use less-than-lethal force when less-than-lethal is not appropriate,” the officer said.

Officers go through hours of training to identify when it’s reasonable to use deadly force. Being second-guessed again and again is difficult, he said.

Police increasingly are confronted with dangerous situations by people who may be armed, dangerous and ready to use violence against officers, said John Gray, a former Arlington Police chief, now an instructor of police training at Northwestern University in Chicago.

While the number of officers who are killed in the line of duty has either leveled off or dropped in recent years, assaults on officers have increased, Gray said.

The reduction in deaths likely is a result of improved protective gear and training, he said. Snohomish County and Western Washington are recognized as having superior training to many other areas of the country, he said.

Still, even with the very best policies and training, there are aberrations in performance.

“People change and they make bad decisions and they have to be held accountable,” he said.

Now that an officer has been charged, Everett’s department likely is going to look inward at its policies and procedures, Gray said.

It has been years since a police officer in Snohomish County has been accused of criminal conduct in a line-of-duty death, and that case didn’t result in charges.

In 1992, a member of the sheriff’s office SWAT team fatally shot Robin Marie Pratt during a raid on her Everett apartment. The team was there to arrest her husband on what proved to be bogus allegations that he had been involved in a fatal armored car robbery.

A six-member inquest jury spent three days hearing testimony from the SWAT team members and forensic experts. A majority of jurors determined the death of the unarmed woman was a criminal act, and they held one of the SWAT team members responsible.

No charges were filed by Greg Canova, the special prosecutor hired to decide how the case should be handled. He is now a King County Superior Court judge but then was a senior assistant state attorney general.

At the time, Canova said his nearly five-month review of Pratt’s shooting turned up no legal grounds to justify criminal charges. He interviewed the inquest jury members after their verdict and said most really believed no crime had occurred and were confused by jury instructions. Among other factors in the decision not to file charges was that the SWAT officer fired a single shot from the fully automatic weapon, Canova said. That indicated the officer didn’t intentionally shoot Pratt, he said.

Sgt. Cher Sneider Accused of Trying to Date Suspect

Police Sgt. Cher Sneider was demoted to patrol officer and suspended for 15 work days without pay on Monday after the Police and Fire Commission determined she tried to date a criminal suspect and then lied about it.

The commission stopped short of firing her, which acting Police Chief Daniel Meister had requested.

Sneider's demotion was warranted, commission members said, because her untruthfulness during the Police Department investigation and the commission hearing last week into her conduct undermined her ability to supervise.

Sneider was hired in January 2000 and has been a sergeant since November 2006. She was earning $68,910 annually as a sergeant. A top paid patrol officer in the department earns about $59,259 annually.

Meister had filed administrative charges against Sneider earlier this year, accusing her of lying and inappropriate conduct and sought her dismissal from the force.

According to the administrative charges filed against her, Sneider, while off duty on May 10, 2008, had an on-duty patrol officer access a secure police database to get Sneider the phone number of a man who was under investigation by the department.

Sneider, who has been on paid administrative leave since November 2008, thought the man was "hot" and wanted to call him so she could go out with him, according to the charging document and testimony at the hearing.

The man, identified only as John Doe in the document, was a city resident with a known criminal history with the department. At the time, city police were investigating him and his residence on suspicion of illegal activity, including illegal drugs, the charging document states.

Sneider made four calls with her personal cell phone to the man's residence on May 10, 2008, one call the following day and two calls on May 17, 2008, the document says. She also stopped at his home May 11, but he wasn't there, the document states.

Sneider, who testified during a two-day hearing last week, denied trying to have a relationship with the man and said she only contacted the suspect as part of an investigation into a noise complaint.

Sneider's attorney, Gordon McQuillen, said Monday that Sneider might appeal the discipline. He said evidence presented by Meister did not prove Sneider accessed Doe's number for personal reasons.

Commission members, in a seven-page decision, said Sneider's testimony was unconvincing.

"It is not credible that Sneider would be making legitimate and necessary police-related calls . . .  while out visiting a succession of taverns on a Saturday night and drinking alcoholic beverages. It is not believable that Sneider would pursue this issue off duty as late as 12:06 a.m. on Sunday morning, May 11, 2008, which is the time she made her last call to the Doe residence," the commission wrote.

Police Department rules require that officers engage in professional conduct, refrain from associating with people of questionable character, use city resources only for work and "speak the truth at all times."

A separate insubordination charge against Sneider was dismissed by the commission. That charge stemmed from her request to remove a laptop computer mount bracket from then-Chief Gary Bach's squad car to have it installed in her car. Meister earlier had issued an order that nothing be removed from Bach's squad, and Sneider was accused of ignoring the mandate.

The commission said it is disappointing that department personnel and commission time was spent looking into the laptop mount issue.

"The commission is concerned that this situation is symptomatic of poor management, system-wide disregard for authority and continuing deterioration in the chain of command with the police department. This matter should have been handled internally," the commission said.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Officer James Breier Arrested for Being Drunk on the Job

A Toledo Police officer has been relieved from duty after a firefighter allegedly found him drunk on the job.

Police Chief Mike Navarre confirms that Officer James Breier was arrested Friday afternoon. Officers arrested him when they saw probable cause that he was intoxicated. He is still being paid while on leave.

The investigation is being handled by Internal Affairs.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Officer Johnnie Self Jr Charged with Sexual Battery & Domestic Assault

A Blacksburg police officer faces charges of sexual battery and domestic assault.

Johnnie Self, Jr. turned himself in earlier this week after he was accused of assaulting his girlfriend late Saturday.

He was released on a $100,000 bond. The Blacksburg Police Department says Self is now on leave from the department.

The Montgomery County Sheriff's Department has taken over the investigation. A special prosecutor from Carroll County will take on the case.

Officer Joseph Klaehn Arrested for Domestic Violence

Warsaw Police Officer Joseph Klaehn was fired Friday night during a closed door meeting with Police Chief Perry Hunter.

Klaehn was arrested early Friday morning at his Fort Wayne home for allegedly slapping his wife several times.

Klaehn is charged with felony domestic battery in front of a minor.

According to the police report, Klaehn allegedly made threats and struck his wife in front of their child.

Klaehn was a probationary officer with the force. Chief Hunter says he can fire probationary officers without cause.

Klaehn had his initial hearing Friday morning. He's out of jail on bond.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Two Deputies Accused of Extorting Hush Money

A Broward County judge granted bail this afternoon to one of two deputies accused of extorting hush money from a Fort Lauderdale marijuana grower.

Fausto "TJ" Tejero, 34, was arrested Oct. 9 on charges of extortion, attempted bribery, armed burglary and unlawful compensation.

Armed burglary is a no-bail offense, but prosecutor Tim Donnelly advised the judge today that the state would not be filing that charge, said Tejero's defense attorney, Mike Dutko.

Judge John Hurley granted Tejero $75,000 bail and ordered that he wear an electronic ankle monitor, Dutko said.

Also charged in the cash-for-silence scheme is Deputy Manuel Silva, 40. He has been held without bail since his Oct. 2 arrest.

According to a search warrant, the deputies promised to protect the pot grower in exchange for $15,000.

Silva proposed the arrangement after seeing five marijuana plants at Orlando Gutierrez's home in Fort Lauderdale, the warrant states. Tejero is accused of acting as Silva's accomplice.

Gutierrez reported the deputies to the Broward County Sheriff's Office, which provided the cash and set up a sting operation to record the transaction.

"I've spoken at length with my client and in the end I think he'll be vindicated of all these charges, but we're not there yet," Dutko said. "Although the bond is high, it is justifiable and appropriate under the circumstances."

Tejero's family is working with a bondsman to try to post the bail, Dutko said.

Beach Patrol Officer Robert Tameris Get's Bond Reduced

Volusia County announced on Friday that it will fire a Beach Patrol officer accused of having sex with a minor multiple times.

Also on Friday, a judge slashed 44-year-old Robert Tameris' bond dramatically. He had faced a $250,000, but a judge on Friday morning cut that to $10,000.

Authorities said Tameris had sex with a teenager more than 20 times over a one-year period. The teenager was 16 years old at the time, and Tameris was 42 years old.

Tameris also allegedly videotaped the teenager on one occasion without her knowledge and sent an image of his private parts to her via e-mail.

Investigators said the teenager came forward while the Florida Department of Law Enforcement was investigating Tameris and two other beach patrol officers. No charges were filed in the original investigation, but investigators began monitoring Tameris' contact with the teenager.

Florida law states that it's a felony for anyone over 24 years old to have sex with a person who is 16 or 17 years old, whether the sex is consensual or not.

Previous Story:

Oklahoma Highway Patrol Has Yet to Release Dashboard Video

It’s been three weeks since two state troopers were involved in a controversial arrest at Holdenville, and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol has yet to release video taken from their vehicles’ dashboard cameras.

The two troopers were put on paid administrative leave while the OHP’s internal-affairs team investigates complaints made against them.

The Tulsa World made a request on Oct. 5 to obtain copies of the videos.

One of those troopers, Daniel Martin, has already been in the national spotlight for a scuffle he had with a Creek Nation paramedic in Okfuskee County, which led to the officer’s suspension for five days in July.

On Friday, Lt. George Brown and Capt. Chris West, both spokesmen for the OHP, said they didn’t know when the videos would be released, noting that investigators are still reviewing the footage.

West said the videotapes would be released to the public eventually.

The OHP took less time to release the dashboard video in the previous incident involving Martin in Okfuskee County.

That scuffle, which captured the nation’s attention, happened at Paden on May 24. On June 12, the OHP released the video.

The Holdenville incident occurred on Oct. 3. Trooper Tommy Allen, along with Martin as backup, arrested Kristopher Douglas, 28, of Holdenville, for not heeding their commands to stay away from a traffic stop.

That stop was located in front of Douglas’ uncle’s home. Douglas, who lived nearby, told the officers he was going to his uncle’s home to help him install drywall.

However, Martin, in his report, said he told Douglas three times to stand by the street until the officers were finished with the traffic stop.

Eventually, Allen went to arrest Douglas, grabbing him around the neck to bring him to the ground, while Martin struck Douglas in back with a baton.

Douglas was arrested and charged with obstructing an officer, a misdemeanor.

Douglas’ uncle, Jerry Ford, witnessed the arrest and said the troopers overreacted and used excessive force.

In the May 24 incident in Paden, Martin has stated he thought the ambulance crew had given him an obscene finger gesture.

The subsequent scuffle with paramedic Maurice White had been captured on a cell-phone video, which became a popular played on the YouTube Web site.

Martin had tried to arrest White for obstructing an officer.

White has stated he repeatedly told Martin that his crew was taking a woman to the hospital and asked to continue the traffic stop there.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Taser International Advising Officers Not to Taser Suspects in Chest

Police officials are taking a "wait and see" approach to a recent warning from Taser International advising officers not to shoot its stun guns at a suspect's chest.

Meanwhile, critics of the 50,000-volt weapons say the company's advisory lends credence to what they've been saying all along: That the weapons are dangerous.

The Arizona-based company said in an Oct. 12 training bulletin that hitting a suspect in the chest from the stun guns could cause an "adverse cardiac event." It marks the first time the company has suggested there is any risk of a cardiac arrest related to the use of Tasers.

Taser officials stressed in the bulletin that the weapons don't necessarily cause cardiac arrest, but that officers can avoid controversy by aiming at the pelvic area.

But police are trained to aim for "center mass" -- the chest -- when deploying a gun or Taser, said Shelby Township Police Capt. Stephen Stanbury.

"We'll have to further investigate this and get more information," Stanbury said. "However, if we do need to change our training and start thinking about pointing the Tasers lower, we'll do it."

Byron Pitts, attorney for the family of 16-year-old Robert Mitchell, who died last year after Warren officers shot him in the chest with a Taser, said the company's advisory shows the devices are dangerous.

"It's a product liability issue; if you know the Ford Pinto is going to explode, you need to warn somebody," said Pitts, who is handling the Mitchell family's wrongful death lawsuit against the city.

Warren Police Commissioner William Dwyer would not comment on the ongoing lawsuit, but said his department is reviewing the recent advisory from the Taser manufacturer.

Ron Scott, director of the Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality, said the company's advisory "shows what we've been saying all along about Tasers being potentially dangerous."
More information:

Officer Elton Jones Arrested for Breaking into Home

An Indiana State Police Probationary Officer has been arrested accused of a crime in Michigan.

State police say 28-year-old Elton Jones is based out of the Toll Road District in South Bend.

He was arrested Monday in Lansing.

He and two other men are accused of breaking into a home and attacking the homeowner this past weekend.

Jones is facing armed robbery, home invasion, and weapons charges.

He was fired today by the state police.
More information:

Officer Steven Turner Accused of Sexual Misconduct

Officer Steven Turner was also accused of sexual misconduct on the job last year when he worked for the Lithonia Police Department.

CBS Atlanta's Tony McNary ask the tough questions about why charges were never filed. He also spoke with Wynesie Thomas who said Turner made her grab his pierced penis.

"They (Lithonia Police) allowed him to resign they didn't fire him. Pretty much it seems they just brushed everything under the rug," said Thomas.

Thomas is upset with the Lithonia Police Department because the chief didn't not fire Officer Steven Turner after she filed a complaint against him a year ago.

Thomas said, "I took three lie detector tests he took three as well. I passed all of mine, he failed his then I never really heard anything else about it."

Lithonia's Internal Affairs Division investigated Thomas' complaint and determined she was telling the truth. Thomas said she was working at Bourbon Street on the Main, a restaurant located across the street from the police department, when Turner pulled up to the side walk in his patrol car. She said Turner asked her about her tattoos and if she had any piercings. Thomas told Turner her tongue is pierced. Thomas said Turner then grabbed her hand and put it between his legs.

“He reached for my hand and pulled it down to his crouch moved a little and asked if I felt that and if liked it the piercing that he had," said Thomas.

Although Lithonia's Internal Affairs investigator sustained Thomas' allegations, Chief Wille Rosser allowed Turner to resign and never charged him.

Then just last week --Fulton County police arrested Turner. He worked for Carver Bible College when three women accused him of showing off his pierced penis during a traffic stop.

Tony McNary asked Rosser, "Would it have been better for the public or these other alleged victims if he (Turner) was not allowed to go on to another police agency and still practice law enforcement with these allegations over his head?"

"Well that would be a question that I cannot answer," said Rosser.

Chief Rosser said he dropped the case against Turner because Thomas didn't want to file charges, but Thomas said that's not true.

"I never said I didn't want to press charges. I actually even tried to file a suit against them," said Thomas.

Probationary Officer Paul Kezar Arrested for Selling Stolen Property

A Thief River Falls probationary police officer allegedly sold stolen property on Wednesday.

Probationary officer Paul James Kezar, 37, was arrested early Wednesday morning. Authorities are investigating a report of a stolen lawnmower tracked down its current owner on Tuesday, who told investigators it had been purchased from Kezar.

Investigators believe Officer Kezar was involved in the theft and sale of several large ticket items including boats, trailers and all-terrain vehicles.

Kezar has worked as a probationary officer with the Thief River Falls Police Department since January 5, 2009.

Former Officer Matthew Leavitt Sentenced to Two Years in Federal Prison

A former Montgomery police officer was sentenced Thursday to spend two years in federal prison after an earlier guilty plea of violating the civil rights of a mixed race couple.

Matthew Leavitt, 31, of South Charleston was also sentenced to two years of supervised release following his prison term.

U.S. District Judge Joseph Goodwin called the case "disturbing" and said Leavitt's behavior "shocked my conscience."

Leavitt arrested Lauren Reynolds on Sept. 26, 2008 and charged her with DUI even though a Breathalyzer test showed she didn't have any alcohol in her system. He also admitted to striking Twan Reynolds several times with a slapjack, an unauthorized weapon, using unreasonable force.

Judge Goodwin said at Thursday's sentencing that more than 20 complaints had been filed against Leavitt alleging illegal searches and arrests. Black men made the complaints or white women who were dating black men.

Leavitt had to surrender his law enforcement certification as part of a plea agreement with federal prosecutors.

Goodwin also said during the hearing that Leavitt “terrorized” the victims’ family, “disgraced his uniform,” and “harmed the community” by diminishing the community’s trust in the police.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Beach Patrol Officer Robert Tomeris Arrested for Having Sex with 16-year-old

A member of Volusia County's beach patrol is under arrest for allegedly having repeated sexual encounters with a teenager who he met while she was sunbathing on the beach. Police say he also secretly videotaped the teen.

"I know him as a beach patrol officer," a neighbor said. "I would never believe it."

Investigators executed a search warrant on his home. The 44-year-old beach patrol officer was arrested for allegedly having sex with a 16-year-old girl he met on the beach.

In a serene Port Orange community, neighbors were in disbelief. Investigators say Tameris had sex with the 16-year-old 20 to 25 times between fall and spring of 2007.

"I hear you, but I would never believe it personally, honestly," the neighbor said.

An arrest affidavit says Tameris also videotaped the sex and while he was investigated for the past couple of months, he sent the 16-year-old a picture of himself exposed.

Retired Officer Darryl Fowler Accused of Shooting Ex-Wife

A retired New York City police officer is being accused of shooting his estranged wife at her home on Long Island.

Suffolk County Police say 43-year-old Darryl Fowler broke into the Middle Island home of Michelle Fowler Tuesday night and shot her multiple times.

Police say Fowler fled the scene and a short time later his vehicle crashed into a tree.

Both Fowler and his estranged wife were listed in stable condition Wednesday.

Detectives plan to present charges against Fowler for attempted murder, burglary, assault and aggravated criminal contempt and criminal use of a weapon.

Police say Fowler retired from the New York City Police Department about 10 years ago.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Trooper Elton Jones Arrested for Breaking into Home

An Indiana state trooper is facing criminal charges after he allegedly broke into a Lansing home and attacked a homeowner, police said.

State Trooper Elton D. Jones, 28, of Valparaiso, faces armed robbery, home invasion and weapons charges in connection with the Sunday night burglary.

Police think Jones and two other men, ages 19 and 30, broke into a Lansing cou-ple's home while they were sleeping, according to WILX-TV in Lansing. The homeowner was assaulted when he came downstairs af-ter hearing noises, police said. The men held the cou-ple at gunpoint while the home was ransacked, WILX-TV reported.

The homeowner was able to escape, and the attackers fled soon after, taking only a briefcase with them, the television station reported.

The suspects were arrested a few hours later by police, the station reported.

Jones was working as a trooper based in South Bend. He was appointed to the state police in August 2008. He graduated from the state police academy in December 2008.

The Indiana State Police fired Jones Tuesday after-noon as a result of the charges. If convicted on all three, he could face life in prison.

Forem Reserve Officer John Marshall Arreted for Drugging, Raping, & Shaving Victim

A former Redondo Beach reserve police officer has been arrested for allegedly drugging an acquaintance, raping him and shaving off the victim's body hair, authorities said.

John Haig Marshall, 53, was arrested Oct. 8 near his home on North Catalina Avenue in Redondo Beach, said Sgt. Phil Keenan.

Marshall was booked on charges of rape using an intoxicating substance and released on $100,000 bail. The charges were first reported Monday by the Daily Breeze.

The arrest came after the 29-year-old victim came forward last month to report that Marshall had slipped him some sort of date rape drug and raped and shaved him in late September.

Police searched Marshall's home and recovered evidence that confirmed the victim's account of the sexual assault. They believe he may have assaulted others in the past.

Marshall, who resigned in 1981 after serving nine months as a reserve officer, was the subject of at least two complaints over the last 10 years, alleging he had drugged and sexually abused other men and boys in his home over a 30-year period. But this is the first time he has been charged.

Police ask anyone with more information to call Detective Denise Brenner at (310) 379-2477, Ext. 2320.

Two Randolph Officer Admit in Court They Freed Drunk Person Related to Fellow Officer

Two Randolph police officers admitted in court yesterday that they freed a drunken driving suspect and deleted a computerized record of the arrest after learning the person was related to a fellow cop.

Patrolmen Stephen Kepler, 49, and Shawn Boyhan, 31, avoided prosecution in the case by enrolling in pretrial intervention, a diversionary court program that will result in the dismissal of charges against them if they stay out of trouble for a year. Both men also forfeited their jobs.

Kepler, a 26-year veteran who made $102,571 a year, and Boyhan, a five-year veteran with an annual salary of $89,583, faced up to 18 months in prison if convicted of removal or concealment of official records, a fourth-degree crime.

"Police officers are not at liberty to "unarrest' individuals simply based upon who that defendant knows or is related to," Morris County Prosecutor Robert Bianchi said in a statement. "They have an obligation to continue with the arrest and treat the offender as they would any other citizen. They also know that altering and manipulating official records to cover up any fact is wrong and constitutes a violation of law, as well as ethical police practices."

Authorities said the officer whose relative was arrested had no role in the cover-up. Neither the officer nor the relative was identified.

The incident unfolded the night of Aug. 21 and the morning of Aug. 22, after Boyhan stopped the driver of a 1995 Chevrolet on South Salem Street on suspicion of driving under the influence. The driver failed field sobriety tests, leading Boyhan to arrest the person.

Capt. Jeffrey Paul, a spokesman for the prosecutor's office, said the suspect then told Boyhan about the family relationship to another Randolph police officer.

Boyhan, authorities said, soon contacted Kepler, who was a senior officer and shift supervisor, and asked if he could "undo the arrest," according to court proceedings and the prosecutor's office.

Kepler agreed, and he and Boyhan then put "considerable pressure" on a female police dispatcher to delete any reference to a DUI in a computerized record of the arrest. The record was altered to show the car had been stopped and impounded because of a suspended registration, though no ticket for that infraction was issued.

The suspect, meanwhile, was released without charges.

Sgt. Scott Krause Charged with Punching Handcuffed Suspect

As a squad car camera recorded, a Milwaukee County sheriff's sergeant punched a handcuffed suspect in the face after the man said he needed to urinate, according to criminal charges against the deputy.

Scott Krause, 38, faces a felony count of misconduct in public office and a count of misdemeanor battery as a result of the incident Friday. The misconduct charge is punishable by up to 3 1/2 years in prison and a $10,000 fine. The battery charge carries a maximum sentence of nine months in jail.

Krause, a 15-year veteran of the sheriff's office, is suspended with pay. Three other deputies have been placed on administrative duty pending an internal investigation, Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. said.

According to a criminal complaint issued Tuesday:

Sheriff's deputies had arrested Ray Calderon, 34, early Friday and had taken him to the County Jail, where Krause arrived to assist in the processing.

As Calderon sat in the back of the car, waiting in a secured parking area of the jail, he told investigators, he had a strong urge to urinate. Because his hands were cuffed behind him, he used his foot to tap on the window. Krause opened the door and told Calderon to stop. Krause said he'd get his turn and closed the door. When Calderon again tapped on the window to get attention, Krause opened the door, leaned in and slapped Calderon and said, "I told you to stop (expletive) kicking the window, you hear me?"

The sergeant then grabbed Calderon and struck him several times in the face with a closed fist, which could all be seen and heard on video recorded by the patrol car's camera, the complaint says.

Clarke announced Friday that one of his sergeants had been arrested and referred to prosecutors after an immediate investigation of an inmate's complaint corroborated the accusations.

At a news conference Tuesday, Clarke said Calderon was initially stopped by the Wisconsin State Patrol near U.S. Highway 41 and Washington Blvd. He was wanted on two warrants from Winnebago County for operating after revocation and contempt of court. According to a sheriff's news release Friday, the initial stop was for suspected drunken driving. The sheriff's deputies were called as backup and wound up taking Calderon to the jail.

According to state records, Calderon, of South Milwaukee, hasn't had a valid Wisconsin driver's license since 2007, when it was revoked after a conviction for operating while intoxicated. He has at least one other drunken driving conviction and other traffic violations such as speeding and failing to use a seat belt. He has convictions for disorderly conduct and bail jumping.

Cpl Sean Alexander Accused of Sexual Battery

A Peach County judge today issued an arrest warrant for a Houston County sheriff’s corporal accused of sexual battery.

Cpl. Sean Alexander, a traffic investigator, is expected to turn himself in Wednesday on charges of sexual battery. He is accused of assaulting a health club employee on Sept. 5.

Alexander said he is not guilty.

Peach County Magistrate Court Judge Larry Lee, who issued the warrant, said the action does not mean Alexander is guilty, but there is enough probable cause to issue the warrant.

Alexander, 35, has been with the sheriff’s office for 14 years.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Deputy James Lesperance Accused of Drunk Driving

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's deputy accused of driving drunk while off-duty is due in court Wednesday morning.

The pre-trial hearing for 45-year-old James Lesperance gets underway. Lesperance was pulled over and arrested by Arroyo Grande police officers in early September. Officers say he registered a blood alcohol level of 0.16.

He has since been reassigned until an investigation is complete.

Officer Malaika Mebane Arrested for Having Sex with Prisoner

A Philadelphia police officer has been arrested on suspicion of engaging in sexual activity with a prisoner inside a cell, the department announced tonight.

Officer Malaika T. Mebane, 38, was charged with involuntary deviate sexual assault and related offenses yesterday and was suspended for 30 days with intent to dismiss by Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey, police said.

Mebane was working as a cell block officer in the 35th District station, at Broad and Champlost Streets in the Ogontz section, early today when a female officer saw him with a female prisoner in a cell, police said. She was seated on a bench and he was facing her.

The prisoner later said she was performing oral sex on the officer.

Mebane, who was assigned to the 39th District, joined the force in 1992.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

19-year-old Dies After Being Tasered

A 19-year-old man died late Friday after San Bernardino city police used a Taser on him at a residential mental health facility, authorities said.

Police were called to Orchid Court, 307 S. Arrowhead Ave., around 11:30 p.m. regarding a fight involving three people, according to a news release.

Officers separated the three, but one of them became combative and was "tased," police said.

Following standard procedure, officers called paramedics to treat the unidentified man. Paramedics started to examine the man, who stopped breathing, police said.

The man was taken to a St. Bernardine Medical Center where he was pronounced dead, according to the San Bernardino County coroner's office. An autopsy is pending to determine the cause of death.

Friday's fatality occurred at a residential mental health center listed as one of the partners of the county's Office of Behavioral Health. Orchid Court is a state-licensed assisted living facility.

The incident marks the third time in less than three months that a suspect has died shortly after being stunned with a Taser by police in the Inland area. Jonathan Nelson, 27, of Rancho Cucamonga was stunned twice on July 30, once by deputies in Hemet and again in a Riverside County jail cell.

Terrace Clifton Smith, 52, of Moreno Valley was Tasered by police and suffered a fatal seizure on Aug. 9.

Critics of law enforcement use of Tasers have said the mentally ill and those under the influence of narcotics can have serious reactions to the electrical charge delivered by stun guns.

San Bernardino officers are not instructed to use Tasers any differently on people suspected of mental illness or drug use, Lt. Gwendolyn Waters said.

Sgt. Dario Robinson, who trains fellow officers on Taser use for the San Bernardino Police Department, said what some of the criticism fails to address is what happened before police used a stun gun.

"There is really no evidence to pinpoint that the Taser is the cause," Robinson said. "... There are so many other factors that lead up to the incident."

Friday, October 16, 2009

Milwaukee County Sergeant Arrested for Battery

A Milwaukee County sheriff's sergeant was arrested Friday after a motorist complained that the deputy had battered him during a traffic stop.

The deputy, a 15-year veteran, has been suspended and two other deputies have been placed on administrative duty in connection with the incident, according to a Sheriff's Department news release.

The 34-year-old driver was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving, according to the release. The driver made the complaint Friday.

Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. ordered an immediate investigation, which corroborated the driver's accusations, and the deputy was arrested.

Former Officer Benjamin Cordova Fired for Stealing Gas

A former North Las Vegas police officer has been fired for allegedly purchasing fuel for his personal vehicle on a department credit card.

Benjamin Miles Cordova had been videotaped three times fueling his blue Chevrolet Colorado four-door pickup truck using another officer's credit card at two gas stations in Henderson and North Las Vegas, an arrest report indicated.

The administrative investigation is separate from a criminal case that's in the hands of the Clark County District Attorney's Office, police said. Details of the police administrative investigation won't be released because it's a personnel matter.

He was arrested July 22 and booked into the North Las Vegas Detention Center. At that time he was placed on paid administrative leave until the administrative investigation was completed.

Cordova was booked on three counts of credit card fraud and three counts of receiving property obtained by unlawful use of a credit card. All counts are felonies.

North Las Vegas police had launched an investigation after another officer discovered that a department credit card was missing from a patrol car and notified his superiors.

During the investigation, police also learned that Cordova's driver's license had expired on Aug. 13, 2007, but he was still driving his own vehicle and department vehicles.

Former Officer Ken Fox Wanted for Child Porn

The wife of a former Oakland CHP officer was arrested by the FBI on a warrant today charging her with molesting two of her husband's young children last year and having thousands of images of child pornography on a home computer, authorities said.

Her husband, Ken Fox, 35, is still at large and being sought on the same charges by authorities who said he may have tried to fake his own death in Mexico recently.

Arrested today in San Diego was Brandie Fox, also known as Brandie Gerth, 26, the children's stepmother. Authorities said she recently split from her husband and was arrested soon after crossing the border into the United States from Mexico.

Oakland police said the California Highway Patrol told them Ken Fox had been fired. CHP officials did not return phone calls seeking comment.

Brandie Fox was arrested on an Oakland police warrant charging her with lewd and lascivious conduct with a child and possession of child pornography.

Oakland police received an anonymous tip in March 2008 from someone who believed the children were being molested during visits to the couple's Oakland home on 36th Street, not far from CHP headquarters. The children live with their biological mother but visit Fox and his wife, police said.

Authorities said Ken Fox's four children range in age from 1 to 8. Authorities said their investigation revealed that the two oldest children, 5 and 8 at the time, were encouraged to fondle their stepmother's breasts and encouraged to talk about bondage. Police said the 5-year-old girl had a leather spiked collar placed around her neck and was walked around the couple's apartment on a leash.

Police said Brandie Fox was studying for her teaching credential at the time of the molestations and wanted to be a kindergarten teacher.

In March 2008, police served a search warrant at the 36th Street apartment and seized computers that turned out to contain more than 3,000 images of child pornography, including some pictures of infants. None of those images were of Ken Fox's own children, police said.

Police said the couple were interviewed in March 2008 but denied any wrongdoing. The couple were not arrested at the time and fled the area before investigators could confirm what happened to the children and get into the computers.

Anyone with information about the case may call the Oakland police at 510-238-3641.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Officer Andrew Kelly Indicted for Running Over Pastor's Daughter

NYPD COP Andrew Kelly was indicted for vehicular manslaughter, drunken driving and speeding Wednesday, two weeks after running over a pastor's daughter.

Kelly could face as much as seven years in prison if convicted in the Sept. 27 crash that killed Vionique Valnord, 32.

The off-duty officer's lawyer said he was not drunk. "This was a tragic, horrific accident," said Arthur Aidala. "He was driving on a dark, rainy, foggy night."

Authorities say he was glassy-eyed, reeked of booze and slurred his words - but he refused a Breathalyzer test.

A blood-alcohol test wasn't performed until more than seven hours later, and it showed no alcohol in his system by then.

Kelly declined to testify before a Brooklyn grand jury, but the panel heard from an accident reconstruction expert, witnesses at the scene and three of Kelly's passengers, sources said.

The witnesses included a buddy who told cops after the crash Kelly had been in two bars and drank six to eight beers.

Kelly was suspended, along with a cop at the scene who gave him water and gum. A sergeant has been transferred during an internal probe.

The Valnords' lawyer said his clients are confident they will get "justice."

"The family now awaits the investigation of the Internal Affairs Bureau to determine if there was an attempt to cover up," lawyer Sanford Rubenstein said.

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Officer David Reeves Jr Arrested for Robbing Auto Parts Store

A Riverside police officer was behind bars today on suspicion of attempting to rob an auto parts store in Moreno Valley, a sheriff’s sergeant said.

David Reeves Jr., 28, of Moreno Valley, allegedly tried to rob the AutoZone at 23510 Sunnymead Blvd. just after 9 p.m. Wednesday, said Riverside County sheriff’s Sgt. Dennis Gutierrez.

Moreno Valley police arrived within one minute of the call and found Reeves detained inside the store, Gutierrez said.

“Nobody was injured, thank God. No shots were fired,” said AutoZone manager Robert Sedano. “I wasn’t here, but I’ve spoken to police.”

Sedano said he heard Reeves had been a police officer.

“That’s sad,” Sedano said. “An off-duty police officer. What’s this world coming to?”

Gutierrez and another sheriff’s public information officer today confirmed Reeves had been a Riverside police officer.

Reeves is being held in lieu of $250,000 bail at the Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside, with arraignment expected Friday in Riverside Superior Court.

Meanwhile, Reeves is no longer on the Riverside police force, as of noon today, according to Sgt. Jaybee Brennan, a department spokeswoman and adjutant to Chief Russ Leach.

Brennan said she could not say whether Reeves was fired or if he resigned, noting it was personnel issue and considered confidential.

“The fact that he’s been a police officer is a concern because we have hundreds of professional officers of integrity and honesty,” Brennan said. “It’s a sad day for us. This obviously occurred when he was off-duty and not working.”

Reeves started working for the Riverside Police Department on June 21, 2001, as a police cadet, Brennan said. He was sworn in as a peace officer on June 28, 2002.

He was arrested on suspicion of kidnap ransom with injury, strong-arm robbery and receiving stolen property and booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside on $250,000 bail, a jailer said.

He is to be arraigned Friday in Riverside Superior Court, the jailer said.

Anyone with information on the alleged robbery was asked to call Moreno Valley police at 951-486-6700. Moreno Valley contracts with the Sheriff’s Department for the city’s police services.


Officer Douglas Spensley Arrested for Sexually Assaulting 9-year-old

Macon County authorities say a part-time police officer from Warrensburg has been arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting a 9-year-old girl.

Decatur Police detectives say they arrested 42-year-old Douglas H. Spensley Wednesday morning at his Decatur home without incident.

Deputy Decatur Police Chief Todd Walker said Spensley was believed to be a family friend of the victim's parents.

Spensley was charged with predatory criminal sexual assault and was being held on $500,000 bond.

Spensley, who has been on Warrensburg's police force since 2006, has been placed on unpaid administrative leave, pending an internal investigation and any other criminal proceedings.

Officer John Cumberland Arrested for Drunk Driving Resigns

A Metro Police officer arrested last month for drunk driving and possession of a gun while intoxicated resigned from the force today, police said.

East Precinct Officer John Cumberland was decommissioned by the police department on Sept. 24, one day after he crashed his unmarked police vehicle into a ditch on Newsome Station Road while off duty.

Cumberland, 32, registered 0.12% on a breath alcohol test. A person is considered legally drunk with a reading of 0.08%.

Police had been conducting an internal investigation of Cumberland. They say it ends with his resignation. He had been with the force five years, police said.

Officer Shayne Souza Pleads Not Guilty to Possessing Marijuana

A Honolulu police officer arrested in Las Vegas for possessing less than an ounce of marijuana and obstructing a public officer is pleading not guilty.

Shayne Souza's lawyer entered his plea Thursday in a Las Vegas court. Souza wasn't present and wasn't required to be.

The 47-year-old Souza allegedly ran from a Las Vegas Parks Police officer on Aug. 15.

Also arrested were a fellow officer, 37-year-old Kevin Fujioka, and a Honolulu social worker, 38-year-old Scott Wilson.

A not guilty plea also was entered for Wilson on Thursday. Fujioka is to enter a plea on Nov. 16. Non-jury trials are scheduled for Souza on Nov. 18 and for Wilson on Feb. 9.

Souza and Fujioka have been suspended and placed on administrative leave without pay.

Information from: The Honolulu Advertiser,
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Corrections Officer Michael Craven Accused of Protecting Inmate in Exchange for Tires

A former state corrections officer has been arrested and accused of protecting an inmate at his prison in exchange for four tires.

Michael L. Craven was a sergeant at Marion Correctional Institution north of Ocala. He is charged with unlawful compensation for official behavior.

Officials say an inmate's father purchased four tires in June and gave them to Craven in exchange for protecting his son while in jail.

Craven was released from the Marion County jail after posting a $5,000 bond.

Officer Kenny Lewis Arrested for Raping Lap Dancer

A police officer raped a lap dancer after handcuffing her in her own home, a court heard yesterday.

Kenny Lewis, 26, also had sex with a woman after she was arrested, taking her to a beauty spot in his police car, jurors were told.

It is claimed that when the woman moved house in an effort to escape him, he tracked her down using the police computer.

The married officer abused his power and position and told his victims that nobody would believe them if they complained, it is alleged.

Lewis met one of his alleged victims, a 33-year- old lap dancer, after she witnessed a road accident. He visited her at home where she was watching a recording of her own performance in a pole dancing competition.

She told the court: 'He saw me watching a DVD and asked where I worked and started making jokes. He handcuffed me and pushed me on to a sofa.'

She said the policeman forced her to perform a sex act and then told her to 'shut up about it'.

The dancer, who is married with children, added: 'He then came back on numerous occasions and handcuffed me two other times.

'The last time he came round the door was open and he let himself in and started watching pornography on my computer.

'He told me if I complained nobody would listen to me because I'm only a dancer and he is a cop.' She said the other two attacks were very similar and she did not resist because she was scared.

Officer David Hendrik Accused of Pointing Weapon Appears in Court

The off duty NYPD officer accused of pointing a loaded gun at a group of "unruly" Rangers fans aboard a LIRR train appeared in court Thursday.

Officer David Hendrik, 38, appeared this morning and the case was adjourned until November 20. Hendrik has pleaded not guilty to the charges that include misdemeanor menacing and felony criminal weapon possession.

Hendrik himself did not speak to reporters outside the courthouse, but his lawyer, Steve Worth, said that Hendrik is the kind of guy you would want on the train if you needed help.

Metropolitan Transportation Authority police say Hendrick was riding a Long Island Rail Road train to Ronkonkoma Sunday night when he showed his a gun to quiet down four passengers who had attended a New York Rangers game.

Hendrik said that he was defending himself from the fans and "letting them know who's boss," after he tried to stop them from cursing in front of an 8-year-old girl, according to Newsday.

However, a train conductor, fare collector, the four hockey fans and even the 8-year-old's parents portrayed Hendrik as the instigator who picked a fight with the fans.

Former Officer Sammy Cohen Accused of Making Child Porn Takes Stand

The former Anchorage police officer accused of making child pornography and molesting children says it's all a big misunderstanding.

Sammy Cohen testified again Thursday in his defense, offering an explanation for every allegation.

Four women came forward with accusations that Cohen sexually abused them or tried to. One woman said that when she was 13 Cohen took naked pictures of her.

The defense says there is no way to know for sure who took the pictures, but they have their own idea of what happened.

The former police officer searched for mail-order brides online and admitted to keeping a subscription to a porn site, but he says it didn't involve children.

"You would go to this site and you would look for foreign brides?" defense attorney John Cashion asked Cohen.

"Yes, sir," Cohen replied.

"In bitter frustration after some phone calls I would tell myself, ‘Well, there's got to be someone else out there that actually wants to be married and I started looking," Cohen continued.

Cohen also says other people had access to his home computer and that guests would use his user name and password.

His attorney claims someone else took nude photos of the teenage girl, who accused him of touching her along with taking the photos and he says whoever did that also manipulated the photos on his computer.

Cohen says the child porn found on disks in his home came like that when he ordered them on eBay.

As for the books with pictures of naked children, Cohen says he bought a whole box of books at a garage sale and had no idea what was inside.

The prosecuting attorney, John Skidmore, pressed Cohen in cross-examination.

"I'm asking, do you agree that some of your behaviors, they had interpreted as inappropriate?" Skidmore asked.

"To listen to them here in the courtroom, yes," Cohen replied.

He denied allegations that he bought a 13-year-old girl lingerie and watched her put it on. He says he wouldn't even know where to begin shopping for a teenager.

"Did you go out and purchase a purple bra, satin bra and underwear set?" Skidmore asked.

"No, sir," Cohen responded.

The prosecution claims Cohen's court testimony doesn't match up with police interrogations.

"These dating services, in 2000, ‘someone else did it for me, I didn't do it.' He's clearly said here that he did," Skidmore argued.

Cohen says he can't remember everything years later, but he says he didn't do it and wants to set the record straight.

During the cross-examination the prosecution noted Cohen's skill at manipulation and coercion -- skills he learned as a police officer.

Cohen agreed that he could get people to do what he wanted -- willingly.

Cohen will continue his testimony next week. That will be his third day on the stand.

Chicago Police Being Investigated for Forcing Suspect to Pose for Photo

The Chicago Police Department is investigating several of its officers accused of forcing a college student they arrested during last month's G-20 summit in Pittsburgh to pose for a group photo with them.

The department, which has been dogged by embarrassing allegations of misconduct in recent years, began investigating the Pittsburgh claims after video of the alleged incident was posted on YouTube.

The video apparently shows about 15 police officers in riot gear posing for a photo with a man they detained kneeling in front of them.

Kyle Kramer, the 21-year-old University of Pittsburgh student forced to pose with police, was returning to campus from a pizza parlor when he was detained by police who were rounding up protesters, his attorney Cristopher Hoel told The Associated Press on Friday.

"He was a college student arrested for walking on campus. That seems to me to make him a victim," Hoel said.

Kramer faced a preliminary hearing Wednesday on misdemeanor charges of failure to disperse and disorderly conduct. Hoel said his client is innocent of both charges.

The department issued a statement saying the officers were working in Pittsburgh on their own time, but that they were still representing the city of Chicago.

"The Chicago Police Department does not tolerate misconduct by any of its members, regardless of where it might occur."

It's possible the officers violated Kramer's constitutional rights, as well as internal departmental rules, said Craig Futterman, a University of Chicago law professor who has studied the department and allegations of police brutality extensively.

If the officers were retaliating against Kramer for something he said that offended them, it is possible they could have violated Kramer's First Amendment right of free speech. The officers also might have violated Kramer's 4th Amendment right against unreasonable search or seizure, Futterman said.

Some fellow police officers declined to comment publicly about the investigation. But they pointed to a popular blog — Second City Cop — that blasted the officers for heaping more ridicule on a department dogged by several recent embarrassing incidents, including the beating of a female bartender by an off-duty officer.

"How do you even begin to defend something like this?" reads the blog. "You can't it's impossible... You are embarrassments."

Pat Camden, who spent more than 30 years with the department and was its spokesman for several years, harshly criticized the officers for damaging the reputation of a department that has been trying to rehabilitate its image that was hurt by several incidents, including one, captured on film and shown worldwide, of an off-duty officer beating up a female bartender.

"When you put on a police uniform you represent the Chicago Police Department and we've got these idiots with a prisoner right in front of them, and supervisors are standing right there," he said, incredulously. "That kind of childish behavior is totally unacceptable."

Some, though, wondered whether Kramer may have willingly posed for the photo with the officers.

Robert Weisskopf, a Chicago police lietenant, said he remembered an incident when a man insisted on being in a photograph along with several officers in riot gear.

And Daniel P. Smith, who wrote "On the Job: Behind the Stars of the Chicago Police Department," had the same thought when he saw the video.

"I could see the guy, thinking, 'They handcuffed me, this would be a great photo for my frat house,'" he said. "That's what it looked like to me."

But Camden said it's hard to imagine how something like this could have occurred, with all of the efforts that have been made to get officers to understand they should always act in public as if their actions are being recorded.

"You continue to make people aware that everything you (police officers) do from the moment you walk out the door until you get home at night is on camera somewhere," said Camden, who said he stresses that in media relations classes he teaches to police supervisors at Northwestern University.

"If you're in the public way, it's more than likely being recorded."

YouTube video of incident:

Trooper William Grissom Charged with Falsifying Documents

A Florida Highway Patrol Trooper was arrested Wednesday evening for official misconduct and has been placed on administrative leave from his job.

According to court records, 29 year old William Lee Grissom was charged with a felony count of "Public Servant Falsifying Official Documents." He was booked into the Leon County Jail and promptly released on his own recognizance.

According to the arrest warrant, Grissom's friend contacted him after receiving a speeding ticket from another trooper on August 14th. The warrant says Grissom completed a Notice of Dismissal, signed the other trooper's name on it and wrote "My radar failed end of shift test." The warrant says Grissom filed the notice with the Leon County Clerk's Office on September 4th.

The trooper who originally wrote the ticket, Matthew Rabun, told investigators that Grissom later realized the severity of what he'd done, called his friend and told him to pay the ticket and then called Rabun to tell him what had happened. Rabun says Grissom claimed his friend was having financial difficulties and needed the money to travel to see a sick family member.

According to FHP Spokesman CAPT Mark Welch, Grissom is on paid leave pending an internal review. Welch says Grissom has worked with FHP since June of 2005 and has no other disciplinary history.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Officer Keith Koen Arrested for Child Porn

Louisiana State Police arrested a 41-year-old sergeant with the Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday morning on a count of pornography involving juveniles.

Keith Koen, of New Iberia, was arrested after investigators allegedly discovered images of child pornography on his computer, said Trooper Stephen Hammons, a spokesman for Louisiana State Police.

Capt. Wendell Raborn, spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office, said Koen had worked with the office since 2008 and was assigned to the Support Services Division, which handles emergency preparedness.

The Sheriff’s Office assisted State Police in the investigation.

Authorities executed a search warrant at Koen’s residence on Texaco Street in New Iberia.

Koen immediately turned in his resignation upon his arrest, according to a news release from the Sheriff’s Office.

Hammons could not say what prompted the investigation. He said no additional arrests are expected but the investigation is ongoing pending further examination of electronic storage media.

If convicted, Koen faces a fine of not more than $10,000 and a maximum possible sentence of not less than 2 years nor more than 10 years, according to state laws.

No bond had been set Tuesday morning, according to the release.
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