Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Former Officer Wilbert Jamison Jr Charged with Abusing His Son


A former Gaffney police officer who served as a resource officer at a middle school was arrested and charged with criminal domestic violence after an earlier indictment of abusing his son.

Wilbert Jamison Jr. was charged with criminal domestic violence. According to a warrant issued earlier Tuesday, Jamison shoved his wife, causing her to fall to the ground and hit her head. Earlier Tuesday morning, he was indicted and accused of handcuffing his 11-year-old son while beating him.

A Cherokee County grand jury indicted Jamison Tuesday on three counts of unlawful conduct towards a child.

Jamison was a Gaffney police officer starting in the late 90s, and he served as both a patrol officer and a school resource officer at Gaffney Middle School.

Jamison resigned about a month ago, citing personal reasons. The alleged abuse took place while Jamison was an active duty officer.

The indictment says that between April 1 and Aug. 30, 2007, Jamison handcuffed his son and forced him to run back and forth in the yard while Jamison beat him with a belt, causing him severe physical and mental injury.

In the second count, the indictment alleges that between Jan. 1 and April 30, 2007, Jamison handcuffed the boy, and locked him faced own in a closet.

The third count of the indictment says that between Dec. 6 and Dec. 8, 2006, Jamison beat the child with a belt, and the belt and buckle caused severe injury to the boy's ankle and foot.

Current Gaffney Police Chief Rick Turner said that he cannot comment on why Jamison continued to work for the department during the investigation because he was not chief at the time.

Turner said he was not made aware of an official investigation by the S.C. Attorney General's Office.

Turner said that in the future, accusations against officers will be handled on a case-by-case basis, and if the accusation bleeds over into the officer's official responsibilities -- such as a child abuse charge against an officer who works with children -- the officer could be reassigned until the investigation is completed.

Tuesday, the State Law Enforcement Division filed a warrant against Jamison for criminal domestic violence, first offense. The warrant said that on April 25, 2008, Jamison shoved his wife, Teresa Jamison, causing her to fall to the floor.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Jamison was not in custody.

His wife said she is still married to him, but she is seeking a divorce so she and her son can move on.

Teresa Jamison said, "We've formed … a new family without the abuse. And any time you get rid of abuse, it can only go up from there.

"We're doing much better. I feel a sense of relief that finally justice will be served."

Other Information: http://www.myrtlebeachonline.com/575/story/742254.html

Mozambican Police Arrest Officer for Burning Man Alive


The spokesperson for the General Command of the Mozambican police, Pedro Cossa, confirmed on Tuesday that the Attorney-General's Office has arrested a senior officer in the Criminal Investigation Police (PIC) for the brutal murder in 2007 of a suspected criminal named Abranches Penicela.

Relatives of Penicela, and human rights organisations have been fighting for justice in this case for over a year. Cossa said that Alexandre Balate, the heard of search and arrest operations in the Maputo branch of PIC, had been under investigation by prosecutors since last year. He was formally detained last Friday.

Penicela was arrested in 2007 on suspicion of participation in a bank robbery. He was held for a period in the Maputo top security prison, but an investigating magistrate ordered his release on the grounds of lack of evidence.

According to the charge sheet against Balate, cited in Tuesday's issue of the independent weekly "Escorpiao", he had earlier, in February 2007, raided Penicela's house, without any search warrant. During this police raid, Penicela was beaten up and called "a thief, a robber and a dangerous criminal".

After the bank robbery, it was Balate who arrested Penicela (again, without a warrant). He was angered by Penicela's release and with two other PIC agents, named as Moise Matusse and Samuel Bila, plotted to kidnap him.

On 14 August, a trap was set for Penicela. According to the charge sheet, he received a phone call from a certain Octavio who wanted to meet him on the road to Swaziland to discuss a truck being imported from South Africa. But when he arrived at the meeting place, he found himself surrounded by police officers, led by Balate.

The police seized Penicela, tied him up and injected him with a drug that rendered him unconscious. He was then taken to Xinavane, where he was blindfolded, thrown onto the floor and shot. Balate then took a container of petrol purchased by his colleagues, poured it over Penicela (who was still alive) and set it on fire.

The autopsy on Penicela said he had second and third degree burns on 90 per cent of his body, and that the burns were the cause of death, although he had also been shot in the head.

Balate was a careless executioner. For when he set fire to Penicela he also burnt his own arm. He invented a story to explain this injury, claiming that he had burnt his arm while tampering with the radiator of his car.

And, despite his terrible injuries, Penicela did not die in Xinavane. He was rescued and taken to Maputo Central Hospital where he was able, the following day, to make a statement, accusing Balate and other police officers. Shortly afterwards, Penicela died of his injuries, but the CD of his dying statements is attached to the prosecutors' charge sheet.

The charge sheet cited by "Escorpiao" declared that there was "no doubt" that the death of Penicela was "a summary execution". Balate and his companions had thus committed first degree murder, with the aggravating circumstances of premeditation, and the use of torture and acts of cruelty to increase the victim's suffering.

Phoenix Detention Officer Arrested for Molesting Teen

Phoenix police arrested a Maricopa County Sheriff's detention officer Monday on suspicion of molesting a now-teenage family member.

Police said the girl told her mother, who also is a detention officer, that the relative molested her about five years ago.

The Republic is withholding the officer's name to protect the girl.

According to police reports, the officer admitted the crime after submitting to and failing a polygraph examination.

He was then arrested on suspicion of sexual conduct with a minor.

Police said the officer was placed on administrative leave for the job he held since November 2005. Further determination of his employment was still pending.

Two NYPD Officers Agree to Plea Agreement


Two New York City police officers charged in connection with a fight two years ago outside two McLean Avenue bars have struck a plea agreement to avoid a trial.

The officers had faced charges of official misconduct and were scheduled to go on trial in Yonkers City Court next month.

Instead, New York City Police Officers Jeffrey Alicea and Stella Ibanez pleaded guilty Wednesday to disorderly conduct, a violation, and the misdemeanor official misconduct charges were dropped, their attorneys, John D. Pappalardo of Scarsdale and John D. Patten of New York City, said yesterday.

The officers were accused of trying to cover up the involvement of a New York City police officer in a September 2007 fight in which a Yonkers man was seriously injured.

Ibanez and Alicea entered their pleas in Yonkers City Court before Judge Michael Martinelli, who fined both $75 and sentenced them to a conditional discharge.

Lucian Chalfen, a spokesman for the Westchester County District Attorney's Office, said he could not comment on the cases against Alicea and Ibanez because they had been sealed.

Both officers are currently being paid by the department, but are on modified duty. Their lawyers said they hoped to return to regular work.

"We are hoping that she can keep her job," Pappalardo said of Ibanez. "She maintained her innocence all along."

The pleas leave three defendants with pending cases in the bar incident. NYPD Officer Michael McGhee, former NYPD Officer Thomas Wimmer and their friend Patrick Tully of the Bronx are scheduled to go to trial Jan. 26, said attorney Richard Murray, who represents Wimmer.

McGhee, Wimmer and Tully are accused of assaulting 26-year-old Peter Cummins in front of Fagan's Ale House and Rockin' Robins Bar and Night Club in a fight that allegedly started when Tully said something to the victim's girlfriend that she deemed derogatory. Cummins suffered severe facial injuries, authorities said.

The three defendants are each charged with third-degree assault, a misdemeanor.

The case is being prosecuted by the Westchester County District Attorney's Public Integrity Bureau.

Detective Michael Spilman Charged with Sexually Abusing Teen Girl

State prosecutors filed several sex abuse charges against a former Murray police detective in 3rd District Court on Tuesday.

West Valley police arrested and booked Michael Spilman, 35, into the Davis County Jail on Jan. 9. Spilman resigned from the department Monday.

The Salt Lake County Attorney's Office filed an affidavit that included a first-degree felony charge of aggravated sexual abuse of a child, because the offence was allegedly "committed by a person who occupied a position of special trust," according to the affidavit. If convicted, the mandatory sentence is five years to life in prison.

He also faces charges of second-degree felony forcible sexual abuse and sexual battery, a class A misdemeanor.

Spilman is alleged to have sexually abused a teenage girl "on several different occasions" over nearly five years, according to the affidavit.

Although he lived in West Valley City where the alleged abuse occurred, Spilman was booked into the Davis County Jail according to police protocol aimed to protect officers from reprisal by inmates they investigated or arrested. He remained in jail Tuesday on $150,000 bail.



Family of Tasered Victim Furious that Officer is Promoted

The family of a mentally disturbed man who died after being Tasered is furious that the NYPD cop who zapped him has been promoted.

"They should tell us about this," said Olga Negron, whose son, Iman Morales, fell 10 feet to his death after being Tasered Sept. 24. Morales was on a ledge and cops werre setting up an airbag when he fell.

Emergency Services Unit Lt. Michael Pigott, who ordered Police Officer Nicholas Marchesona to fire the electroshock gun at Morales, committed suicide days later.

Marchesona was promoted to detective five weeks later, NYPD officials confirmed. His promotion was scheduled before Morales' death, an NYPD spokesman said Monday.

Morales' family members called for the Brooklyn district attorney to bring criminal charges against Marchesona, and said the NYPD should fire the officer, not reward him.

Morales' brother, Jesse, said the move compounds the family's grief.

NYPD and city officials called Morales' death a tragedy, which only deepened when Pigott killed himself at ESU headquarters Oct.2.

Pigott left behind a suicide note saying he shot himself to spare his three children from seeing him in handcuffs or behind bars, police sources said.

Pigott's note also asked Marchesona not be punished for following a superior's order.

Morales' death was ruled a homicide by the city medical examiner's office.

A spokesman for the Brooklyn district attorney said the office accepted the NYPD's assessment that the incident was a tragic accident with no criminality.

Morales was struck with a Taser as he balanced on an awning ledge and, naked and raving, flailed at cops with a fluorescent light bulb.

Lt Francis Cole Kills Wife then Himself


An NYPD lieutenant gunned down his wife and blew himself away Monday in an explosion of rage at their Long Island home, cops said.

Lt. Francis Cole, 48, who worked out of Brooklyn's 68th Precinct, stabbed his wife, Elana, 46, in the chest with a kitchen knife before shooting her in the head at their home in Centereach, police said.

He then shot himself in the head.

Cole's 18-year-old daughter tried to intervene before her parents' fight turned deadly, but was struck in the face, said Detective Lt. Jack Fitzpatrick of the Suffolk County Police.

The daughter called 911 at 12:35 p.m. to report her father had shot her mother, Fitzpatrick said.

"The Coles had been going through a divorce and apparently this is related," Fitzpatrick said.

He said there had been no prior calls to the couple's Savoy Court home.

Cole and his wife were found in the upstairs bedroom of their two-story house. He was still alive when cops found him and rushed him to Stony Brook University Medical Center, where he died.

Neighbors said they were stunned.

"There was no sign, never an argument, nothing," said Mike Arrigo. "They were an ideal family."

Besides the couple's teenage daughter, Elana Coles's 81-year-old mother was in the house at the time, Fitzpatrick said.

The couple is also survived by three sons, all in their 20s.

In 2005, Francis Cole was named in a racial discrimination suit filed by a black female officer in the 68th Precinct. The officer accused Cole of running an "old-boys club" within the NYPD that prevented her from being promoted.

Martinsville Teen Dies From Being Tasered

The Bureau of Criminal Investigations office of the Virginia State Police in Salem is awaiting autopsy results and continuing its investigation into the death of a teenager who was struck by a police Taser in Martinsville last week.

An autopsy was to be conducted to determine the cause of death for the 17-year-old, who died Thursday night. He became unresponsive after Martinsville police officer R.L. Wray deployed a Taser in an effort to subdue the teen inside a duplex apartment at 307 Rives Road.

Tasers are electronic control devices used to subdue people. They are considered nonlethal, Martinsville Police Chief Mike Rogers has said.

Rogers has declined to identify the youth because of his age, but friends have identified him as Derrick Jones.

Lt. Tim Lyon of the Bureau of Criminal Investigations said he had no new information to release Monday.

“We’re waiting for official autopsy results as well as toxicology,” Lyon said, adding that he does not anticipate anything before next week. “Right now we’re not releasing anything,” due to the ongoing investigation.

Sgt. Robert Carpentieri of the state police said he did not know how often incidents of death or injury from Tasers are reported, but to his knowledge, “they’re few and far between,” he said.

Carpentieri said this is the first case he has heard about in which a person died after a Taser was deployed.

According to a report released last month by Amnesty International, a human rights organization, medical examiners and coroners have concluded that Taser shocks “caused or contributed to at least 50 deaths” in the United States between June 2001 and August 2008.

Those 50 people were among 334 who died after police deployed Tasers during the same period, according to Amnesty’s report. In most of those cases, coroners attributed the deaths to other causes, such as drug intoxication or “excited delirium,” the report said. It defined “excited delirium” as “a term often used to describe someone who is in an agitated or highly disturbed state.”

The Amnesty report cites a June 2008 study by the National Institute of Justice on deaths following the use of conducted energy devices (CEDs), the class of weapon that includes Tasers. According to Amnesty, that report “found ‘no conclusive medical evidence’ of a high risk of death or injury from the direct effects of Tasers or similar devices,” but “it stated that ‘Many aspects of the safety of CED technology are not well-known, especially with respect to its effects when used on populations other than normal healthy adults.’”

The NIJ study said the risk of death or injury associated with Tasers could be higher among children, the elderly, pregnant women, people with heart disease and other “at-risk” individuals, Amnesty reported.

When it issued its report, Amnesty International called on federal, state and local authorities to suspend the use of CEDs or, “at a minimum, limit their deployment to life-threatening situations.”

The Amnesty report acknowledges that other studies, some funded by the CED industry, have found the risk of these weapons to be “generally low” in healthy adults.

According to police accounts, the Martinsville teen was struck after Wray responded to the scene and saw evidence of what he believed was a home invasion. The officer entered the duplex and heard someone in its kitchen. He asked the person to come out so he could speak to him, police have said.

The teenager came out of the kitchen “and moved rapidly toward” Wray “in an offensive stance,” according to a city news release. The teenager also made comments that were “not too kind” to the officer, Rogers has said.

Wray deployed his Taser on the teenager, who then was subdued on the floor and handcuffed, police have said. Wray then dealt with another male teenager on the porch, whom he took into custody. When Wray returned to the 17-year-old who had been Tasered, he found him unresponsive, Rogers has said.

The officer called for rescue and administered CPR, but the teenager was pronounced dead at Memorial Hospital, Rogers has said.

Witnesses later said no home invasion took place.

Contrary to previous reports, the other teenager taken into custody that night, a 15-year-old, has not been charged in the incident, Rogers said Monday.

Rogers has said Wray was within the police department’s procedures for using Tasers when he deployed his. The officer has been placed on paid administrative leave.