Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Former Duputy Huey "Eddie" Nichols Jr Found Guilty of Indecency with Child

Former Harrison County sheriff’s deputy and ordained minister Huey “Eddie” Nichols Jr. was found guilty on Monday for two counts of indecency with a child by sexual contact.

The victims in his case are his stepdaughters, who were ages 11 and 14 at the time they informed officials that Nichols had inappropriately touched their breasts, applying Udder Butter and giving them home breast exams.

The punishment phase in the trial begins today at 9 a.m.

“I can’t think of anything more damaging in our community; in our society than a police officer that chooses to break the law,” Shawn Connally, co-counsel for the state, said in closing remarks. “It’s a betrayal.”

Following the verdict, Nichols stood in the courtroom gallery embracing his wife and mother of the victims, Sharon Nichols.

Connally told jurors, despite Nichols calling the oldest victim a liar, she never changed her story.

“From the beginning of this case, back in 2011, she (the oldest) never changed her story — not once — (she says) ‘This is what goes on in this house, and I’m old enough to know, it’s wrong,’” Connally reminded them.

“She has the courage - despite the embarrassment, despite the alienation, despite everything — to come forward,” said Connally.

“Think about how this case begins,” Connally instructed jurors. “(She) comes forward, tells the school counselor, there’s some things going on in that house that’s not supposed to be going on. You heard her testify. What did she say? The defendant touched her breasts while he’s rubbing her belly on the couch, and conducts these home breast exams on a 14-year-old child…and the Udder Butter, which is what we’re asking you to convict him on.”

The assistant district attorney said to prove Nichols did it all for sexual gratification, they presented evidence of Internet searches for “hot stepdaughter” and “young, sexy daughter” found on Nichols’ computer; the searches were all conducted on his day off.

“What kind of man is going to do that kind of an Internet search?” Connally asked. “It kind of ties everything together. It shows you what’s in his state of mind. While he’s rubbing Udder Budder on his stepdaughters’ breasts, an 11 and 14 year old girl, he’s doing it for his sexual desire.”

Connally said the state presented the photos Nichols took of the victims in various states of undress to show the relationship between him and his stepdaughters.

“He developed an unnatural relationship with these little girls,” said Connally.

He asked the jury to ask themselves what was more reasonable — the defendant lying or three different girls, including the two victims and a third alleged victim in a separate case, lying about the same thing.

“When I was a kid, I remember a sermon a preacher gave, ‘Beware of false preachers, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. That is Eddie Nichols,” said Connally, quoting a biblical scripture in Matthew. “You’ve got to decide what kind of behavior we’re going to condone and what kind of behavior we’re going to condemn.

“He was never going to confess because he’s a cop and he’s a preacher, and if there’s one unforgivable sin in those professions, it’s touching a child.

“This is a about right and wrong,” said Connally.

In his closing arguments, defense attorney Vernard Solomon contended that the older step-daughter, the first to make an outcry, never liked Nichols from the beginning; thus, she concocted a story.

Regarding the photos of undress taken by Nichols, Solomon said the one with the mother and two stepdaughters mooning the camera “wasn’t done for anything other than to be funny.”

“I think that when you analyze this evidence, you might find there was some inappropriate behavior to some degree with Eddie and Sharon’s lifestyle, but the state just haven’t proved (their case),” said Solomon. “It’s just not there.

The defense attorney said the case is a misinterpretation by the authorities of what occurred. He said the victims requested the Udder Budder for a legitimate purpose, and didn’t apply it right; therefore, Nichols responded.

“Is that for sexual purposes? I don’t think so,” Solomon argued.

“They’re asking you to find him guilty of a criminal violation, but not inappropriate behavior,” he told jurors. “I’d ask you to find him not guilty, and then walk out of the courtroom with your head held high, proud of what you did.”

Both Connally and Tim Cariker, co-counsel for the state, reminded the jury that they’ve heard testimony from Nichols’ biological daughter, calling him a narcissistic (expletive); Connally read a note she wrote, calling him psycho, laughing about how he calls himself a pastor, and expressing how she doesn’t want him to be around her or her children.

“We ask you to look at the totality of the picture because when you put the totality of the picture together, we tend to see the truth,” said Cariker, displaying a photo Nichols took of the youngest victim in a state of undress.

Cariker argued that the younger victim, at one point, recanted her story after visiting the Nichols home, outside of court order, and being told by the couple that she would be the one to reunite the family.

“But, when the rubber hit the road, that little girl stood up before you, God and everybody, raised her right hand and said, ‘Eddie did touch me. He put Udder Butter on my chapped nipples, and checked me for breast cancer, and then (she) ran off the stage crying.”

“Is this somebody that’s a caring compassionate preacher, a caring compassionate parent? Or, a pervert?” Cariker asked.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Former Officer John Phillips Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison

A longtime former Texas A&M police officer has been sentenced to prison time for possession of Child Pornography and burglary.

The Brazos County District Attorney's office says 56-year-old John Phillips was sentenced to 10 years in prison - with eligibility for probation after 6 months.

Phillips pleaded guilty to five counts of child porn possession and two counts of burglary for pawning stolen items taken on campus.

Prosecutors say all counts are felonies, and Phillips will have to register as a sex offender.

Deputy Clerk William Montgomery Sentenced to JUST 18 months for Molesting Child

William Tyrone Montgomery was sentenced Monday to 1½ years in prison for molesting a young girl in the 1980s, beginning when she was 8 years old.

Montgomery, 52, resigned from his longtime job as a deputy clerk for Lorain County Clerk of Courts Ron Nabakowski earlier this month under public pressure after pleading guilty to gross sexual imposition charges in March. His plea was part of a deal that saw prosecutors drop additional charges of rape and sexual battery.

Montgomery also was labeled a sexually oriented offender and will have to register for 10 years after his release from prison.

Although the victim, who now is an adult, wasn’t in court Monday, Assistant County Prosecutor Chris Pierre read a letter she wrote urging county Common Pleas Judge Mark Betleski to impose a prison sentence.

The victim wrote that Montgomery had molested her for a decade and she endured it because she was afraid she was going to get in trouble herself or suffer other consequences if she told anyone.

“I locked all the bad stuff away in a separate little box in my brain,” the letter said.

She wrote that the abuse made her feel terrible and that “rotten became my normal.”

The victim said that in her mind justice for Montgomery would see him serving time in prison, where he could feel some of what she felt while he was sexually abusing her.

“I want him to live locked away in a little box,” the letter said. “I want him to live in fear.”

Montgomery apologized in court for his actions.

“I’m truly sorry for what I have done,” he said. “Through the course of my life I have never wanted to hurt anybody.”

Defense attorney Jack Bradley said Montgomery also had apologized to the girl’s family about four years ago. Montgomery was indicted in August 2013, shortly before the statute of limitations in the case would have run out.

He said his client still has the backing of his church and several co-workers and supporters who wrote letters to Betleski urging leniency.

But Pierre countered that those supporting Montgomery weren’t around when he was molesting the victim and couldn’t attest to who he truly was.

“Character is who you are and what you do when no one else is around, and the state would submit that (the victim) knows what the defendant is like when no one else is around,” he said.

Betleski said he was imposing the sentence based on the charges Montgomery had pleaded guilty to, not the allegations that had been leveled.

He also was critical of the direction the public discourse surrounding Montgomery’s employment took.

Although Nabakowski had said he would wait until after sentencing to decide what to do with Mongtomery, he also said that he was unlikely to fire him if he received probation. That brought complaints from the public and county Commissioner Tom Williams, who pushed for Montgomery to be barred from county property if he wasn’t fired.

Betleski said the debate failed to take into account the low recidivism rates of sex offenders and that those who had called for Montgomery to be fired didn’t appear to know that. He also said that those who believe felons shouldn’t be allowed to have jobs should avoid most of the restaurants in the county.

Williams, who didn’t attend the hearing, said he was disappointed to learn of Betleski’s comments.

“If that’s the way the judge feels, he’s out of touch with the way the majority of people feel,” he said.

Former Officer Christopher Fox Accused of Allowing Underaged Teens to Drink

A former North Olmsted police officer accused of allowing underage drinking at his home is scheduled to appear in court Wednesday.

Christopher Fox, 49, who was fired by the department on Nov. 21, faces 31 charges of liquor offenses involving underage persons stemming from a New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day party at his Barton Road home.

North Olmsted Law Director Michael Gareau and Anthony Manning, an attorney representing Fox, did not immediately return voicemails seeking comment.

Manning has filed a motion to have some of the charges against Fox dismissed, court records show.

An oral hearing is scheduled for Wednesday, and a jury trial is scheduled to begin on May 27, although a jury trial was scheduled and then postponed in March, court records said.

Shortly after Fox was fired, Gareau told the Northeast Ohio Media Group that his dismissal was unrelated to the charges against him.

Fox was let go for abuse of sick leave, according to his personnel file, which North Olmsted provided to the Northeast Ohio Media Group in December.

The 23-year veteran of the North Olmsted police force was first disciplined for improperly using sick leave in 1998 when he was suspended for five days for sick leave abuse, his file said.

His file shows a pattern of abusing sick leave during his tenure with the North Olmsted police department. In 2012 he was suspended for another sick leave violation and disciplined for failing to report for duty because of off-duty alcohol consumption.

Corrections Officer Kelvin Grisales Charged with Aggravated Sexual Assault

Hartford police said they have obtained another arrest warrant for a Hartford correction officer who was arrested last month after a sexual assault was reported on Huyshope Street in Hartford.

Officials from the state Department of Correction said Kelvin Grisales was placed on administrative leave after being arrested in March and charged with first-degree aggravated sexual assault, first-degree threatening, weapons in a motor vehicle and facsimile firearm.

Hartford police said they have obtained another arrest warrant for Grisales in connection with a case in March 2012. Police said it is the result of an investigation of several sexual assaults in Hartford and New Britain.

"The circumstances of this investigation are consistent with a serial pattern evident in Hartford and New Britain," a news release from police states.

Police said Grisales has been charged with first-degree assault, first-degree sexual assault, patronizing a prostitute from a motor vehicle, first-degree kidnapping, impersonation of a police officer and second-degree threatening. Bond was set at $100,000.

During a bond hearing held earlier this month, prosecutors said three more sexual assault cases might be brought against him. Police said there is one possible sexual assault case in New Britain and another in Hartford.

The incident that led to the original charges happened on March 27 and that case, along with evidence from the scene, led police to suspect Grisales in a several other sexual assaults they were investigating.

Police said they responded to a report of sexual assault with a firearm displayed just after 12:30 a.m.

At first, the victim told police that she was walking on Wethersfield Avenue to go buy cigarettes when Grisales drove up in a blue SUV, pulled a gun on her and ordered her to get in the car.

He brought her to a “quick mart,” ordered her to buy a condom, then ordered her to get back in the car and sexually assaulted her, she said, according to police.

When police asked the victim why she did not ask for help in the store, she said she was scared and feared Grisales would but her.

Police located a car matching the description the woman gave police, took Grisales into custody and the victim identified him as the person who assaulted her.

When the victim went to the police station, she gave a written statement with a different account of what happened, police said.

She said he had gotten into a fight with her boyfriend and said she was going out to make money when Grisales approached her on Wethersfield Avenue and asked where she was going, the woman told police.

She told him she had no particular destination and her told her to get into his car.

They went to the store to buy a condom and discussed a price for sex. She said $40, but Grisales said he’d give her $60, according police. When they got back into the car, Grisales pulled out a gun and demanded a sex act, according to police.

After the assault, she got out of the car, ran toward a vehicle that was running and that is when police arrived, according to police.

When police questioned Grisales, he said the victim flagged him down on Wethersfield Avenue, said it was cold out and asked for a ride to the quick mart, so he brought her to the store. He also told authorities that she had a black eye and he felt bad for her.

Grisales told police the victim talked to him about her downfalls with heroin, a falling out with her father, getting kicked out of her apartment and said her boyfriend was mean and would not kiss her, so Grisales kissed her on the cheek, according to the court documents.

He then went on to say that the victim bought the condom and the sexual acts were consensual.

Then, the woman asked Grisales for $60 for the sex and said she had to buy heroin, he said.

He went on to say she threatened him and began reaching in his pockets, so he grabbed his son’s BB gun from under the passenger seat and put it in his lap because he was in fear, according to court paperwork.

Then he told the victim to get out of the car or he could drive her home, but she became more aggressive and he ordered her out of the car, he told investigators.

After ordering her from the car, he felt bad and drove back, but saw her speaking with police, he told officers.

Grisales has worked at Hartford Correctional since September 2008.

Court records state that Grisales pleaded not guilty to the March case and he is being held on $750,000 bond.

Hartford police are asking any other victims to call police at 860-757-4041.

Corrections Officer Bradley Adams Arrested for Stealing Insulin

A corrections officer has been arrested on charges he stole a bottle of insulin while on duty at the Houston County Jail. Bradley Adams, 33, was arrested and charged with a misdemeanor count of theft according to Sheriff Andy Hughes.

“A nurse noticed the insulin missing from the medical clinic at the jail and reported it,” Hughes said. “We reviewed surveillance video and determined that Adams took the drug.” The sheriff said Adams confessed to the crime when confronted. Hughes said the officer, who had been working at the jail for about a year, was terminated. No motive was revealed.

“I will not tolerate any abuse of the law,” said Hughes. “There is no room in this department for dishonesty.”

Officer Michael Valdez Arrest Man for Filming Another Arrest

A Florida man is facing criminal charges after an officer arrested him – all for taping the officer as he attempted to detain another individual.

The incident began on St. Patrick’s Day, when Miami-Dade Officer Michael Valdez arrived at a store in Cutler Bay in order to arrest the owner on misdemeanor traffic charges. Freelance disc jockey Lazaro Estrada was performing a promotional event at the time Valdez arrived, and started recording the arrest on his smartphone.

According to CBS Miami, Estrada said he started taping the incident when the officer threw the handcuffed owner down onto the sidewalk. Valdez can be seen signaling to Estrada to move away, and the disc jockey can be seen stepping back into the store, though he continues recording.

“I backed off into the building and I stayed behind the glass doors,” Estrada said to CBS 4. “Obviously, all I had was my phone in my hands in clear sight…and he only told me once. I did what he told me.”

When more officers arrived at the scene, they told Estrada they needed his information. Estrada asked what he did wrong, and later Valdez criticized Estrada for not listening to his orders.

“The guy’s armed, three times my size, I’m telling you to back off,” Valdez told Estrada. When the officer says Estrada will be arrested, the disc jockey asks what for and the officer’s reply can’t really be heard.

Ultiamtely, Valdez charged Estrada with misdemeanors: obstruction of justice and resisting arrest without violence.

According to CBS Miami, the police report on the incident states Valdez gave “verbal commands to back away and he refused to do so.” Valdez also wrote that he “felt threatened” by Estrada’s presence.

Lawyers for Estrada -- Frank Gaviria and Jonathan Perazzo – claim their client did nothing wrong.

“At no point did he interfere, impede or obstruct the officer in the performance of his duties,” Gaviria told CBS 4. “The video clearly shows Mr. Estrada was a very safe distance away from the officer.”

“Just like police officers have their dash cams, private citizens have their cell phones. There’s no difference,” Perazzo added.

This isn’t the first time police have reacted to being filmed with arrests. Earlier this year, a Massachusetts man was detained and charged with violating the state’s wiretapping rules when he took out his cell phone and recorded an officer cursing while he worked a street detail. The officer stated the resident was “secretly audio taping,” but the man claimed his phone was out in full view.

In a particularly dramatic case last year, California police arrested a man for allegedly disturbing a crime scene with loud music and video recording them. As they attempted to arrest the man, his dog jumped out from the car and was shot dead at the scene.

Meanwhile, police in Dallas, Texas, came out earlier this month and asked citizens to stop filming police, since the behavior was creating “major safety issues.” As RT reported, police argue that it’s not clear who is following them many times and why they are filming their actions.

A 2012 ruling by the Supreme Court, however, upheld the citizen’s right to record on-duty police officers.

Officer Yong Wu Charged with Possession of Child Porn

Yong Wu, 34, downloaded to his computer at his home in Ozone Park, Queens, videos of underage girls performing sex acts, and he also shared the videos with others, police said Tuesday.
An NYPD officer was busted on child pornography charges after cops discovered he was downloading sickening sex clips onto his computer and sharing the material, police said on Tuesday.

Officer Yong Wu, 34, downloaded to his computer at his home in Ozone Park, Queens, a video clip, just over five-minutes long, of an underage girl performing a sex act on herself, cops said.

Investigators said he also downloaded another clip a short time later of a girl, aged 13 years or younger, having sex with an adult man.

Cops raided Wu’s home early Monday morning and found five other videos stashed on his desktop that showed other girls, some as young as 8-years-old, engaging in sex acts with adult men, officials said.

Wu is charged with seven counts each of promoting a sexual performance of a child and possession of a sexual performance by a child, officials said.

It was not immediately clear if he had been arraigned as of late Tuesday afternoon.

Officer Jennifer Gautier Arrested for Doctor Shopping

A veteran Hammond Police Department officer was arrested on a charge of possession of a controlled dangerous substance by fraud, the department announced Tuesday in a news release.

According to the release, Officer Jennifer Payne Gautier, 35, was found by investigators to be "doctor shopping" to obtain multiple prescriptions of controlled substances.

She turned herself in to investigators Tuesday. She was charged with possession of a controlled dangerous substance by fraud.

Gautier served with the department for 13 years and will be placed on administrative leave until due process of the courts.

Officer John Torres Arrested in Connection with Shooting

A Baltimore city police officer has been arrested in connection with a shooting outside a central Pennsylvania apartment complex.

Police said officers responding to the York Apartments around 12:30 p.m. Tuesday found a man who had been shot multiple times in the abdomen and arm while sitting in his vehicle. He was identified as David Hohman, Sr.

York Area Regional Police Sgt. Jeff Dunbar said the Baltimore officer is in custody and cooperating with authorities. Dunbar said the officer was among those who called 911 and waited for police to arrive. That officer was identified as John Torres, who was off duty at the time of the incident.

Police believe the incident was the result of a dispute between Torres and Hohman.

The victim was conscious and talking to authorities before being taken to a hospital for treatment.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Officer Frank Phillips Charged with Police Brutality

Usually, after charges of police brutality, police officials take their time reacting while they follow procedure to determine who did what. But this episode in Knoxville, Tenn., was so extreme and well-documented that the local sheriff fired the officer immediately.

Frank Phillips, a Knox County Sheriff’s officer, was fired Sunday night after a series of pictures taken by photographer John Messner were published in the Daily Mail in Britain. They showed an officer identified by the Sheriff’s Office as Phillips grabbing 21-year-old college student Jarod Dotson around the neck and squeezing him until he fell to his knees.

An officer identified by the Sheriff’s office as Frank Phillips is seen choking college student Jarod Dotson while he was being arrested for public intoxication and resisting arrest.

WBIR reports that law enforcement responded to a “disturbance” near the University of Tennessee where a house party with about 800 people had reportedly become unruly and spilled out into the street.

According to a police report, Dotson ignored repeated instructions to go inside, the Knoxville News Sentinel reported. Deputy Brandon Gilliam wrote in the official report that Dotson “began to physically resist officers’ instructions to place his hands behind his back, and at one point grabbed on to an officer’s leg.”

Messner, a freelance photographer who documented the incident, told The Washington Post that Dotson showed no signs of resisting arrest.

Messner’s still pictures, arranged by The Post in the GIF show two officers cuffing Dotson’s hands behind his back when Phillips came over and choked Dotson until he collapsed to his knees. Messner said that as Dotson was being pulled up he was smacked in the back of the head, “a snap-out-of-it kinda smack under the circumstances.”
Jarod Dotson was charged with public intoxication and resisting arrest. He was released from jail on a $500 bond Sunday morning.

In a press release on Sunday night, Sheriff Jimmy “J.J.” Jones said:
“In my 34 years of law enforcement experience, excessive force has never been tolerated. After an investigation by the Office of Professional Standards, I believe excessive force was used in this incident. The investigation will now be turned over to the Knox County Attorney General’s Office to determine any further action.”

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Officer Aaron Henson Arrested for Stealing Money

The Waukesha County district attorney is reviewing an investigation into a former village of Bloomfield and village of Genoa City police officer suspected of stealing money from the Genoa City Police Department.

Aaron E. Henson, 36, of N1155 Walworth St., Genoa City, was arrested April 16 at his home on suspicion of theft and misconduct in public office, Walworth County Sheriff's Office Captain of Investigations Dana Nigbor said.

Henson was filmed stealing $2,128.30 from the police department's bond box in April, according to a search warrant affidavit.

Waukesha County District Attorney Brad Schimel will decide if charges should be filed, Walworth County District Attorney Daniel Necci said.

Henson worked as a Bloomfield police officer for five years while working part-time as a Genoa City police officer, according to a Bloomfield Police Department news release.

Henson resigned from the Bloomfield Police Department on April 17, the release states.

Genoa City Police Chief Joseph Balog was told by administrative assistant Maria Mayer on April 7 that money was missing from the department's bond box, the affidavit states.

Over the next several days, the Mayer monitored the bond box by photographing cash and writing down the serial numbers of bills put into the box. She also installed a video camera in “the area of the bond box," according to the affidavit.

On April 15, Mayer checked the box and found money missing. She checked the video recording and found that it shows Henson removing bond envelopes and money, according to the affidavit.

The police department brought the case to the Walworth County Sheriff's Office, Nigbor said, and a search warrant was executed as part of the investigation.

Henson was “very cooperative” when arrested, and $400 was recovered, Nigbor said.

Necci said theft by a police officer is “awfully uncommon” for the county.

The Walworth County District Attorney's Office is reviewing all open cases involving Henson to see if and how the former officer's actions could affect other cases.

Henson was released on a signature bond April 17.

He is scheduled to appear in court 1:15 p.m. Thursday, May 1, at the Walworth County Judicial Center.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Former Officer Donald Glunt Arrested for Child Porn

Detectives arrested a former Lynden police officer Friday as part of a child pornography investigation.

Detectives arrested 57-year-old Donald Glunt, who was taken into custody without incident.

According to investigators, Glunt had recently resigned his position with the Lynden Police Department.

Detectives said the investigation originated after officials with the Lynden Police Department discovered images on Glunt’s city-owned cellphone while conducting an internal administrative investigation.

On Wednesday, Lynden Police Department’s Chief Jack Foster asked the Washington State Patrol to conduct a criminal investigation.

Detectives reviewed digital evidence and interviewed Glunt, which led to his arrest.

According to investigators, Glunt was trading images with a 16-year-old girl in Texas. Authorities in Texas assisted detectives by interviewing the victim.

The incident remains as an ongoing investigation.

Glunt was booked into the Skagit County Jail on charges of dealing and possession of depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct and viewing of depictions of a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

Detective Stevie Billups Sentenced For Drug Crimes

Former Columbus Police Detective Stevie Billups, 48, of Columbus, was sentenced to serve 57 months in prison for crimes he committed through his involvement with a local drug dealer.

Carter M. Stewart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio; Kevin Cornelius, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Cincinnati Field Office (FBI); Karen Huey, Director of Enforcement for the Ohio Casino Control Commission; and Columbus Police Chief Kim Jacobs announced the sentence imposed today by Senior U.S. District Judge James L. Graham.

Judge Graham also fined Billups $10,000 and ordered him to serve three years of supervised release after he completes his prison sentence.

Billups pleaded guilty on November 22, 2013, to one count of attempted possession with intent to distribute heroin. According to a document the government filed with the court prior to today’s sentencing, in 2013 Billups provided armed protection for two transactions involving drugs while he was a Columbus Police officer.

Billups began his relationship with a drug dealer when Billups began laundering money for the drug dealer by cashing in chips which helped the drug dealer avoid transaction reporting requirements at the Hollywood Casino in Columbus.

According to court documents, Billups asked the drug dealer to “get him in the game.” Billups’ query led to the June 28th and July 17th drug stings by the FBI, whereby Billups protected the drug dealer in the pickup of purported drug money. He later provided protection for the drug dealer during a transaction which Billups believed involved the distribution of heroin. Billups provided protection during the second transaction while he was on duty, armed with his service weapon, and in a Columbus Division of Police unmarked detective vehicle. Billups received a total of $5,000 in exchange for providing protection to the drug dealer during these transactions.

“Public confidence in our police to ‘do the right thing’ is undermined with each case of police corruption,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Doug Squires told the court. “It is a police officer’s duty to uphold the law and protect the public....Billups’ intent to aid and further the problems that heroin has brought to our communities for his own profit indicates the serious nature of this offense.”

“Using a police officer’s badge and gun to commit crime is a particularly disturbing threat to the community,” stated SAC Kevin Cornelius. “This case highlights the fact that local, state, and federal agencies are working together to root out corruption and bring to justice those who betray the public’s trust.”

“Ohio Casino Control Commission and its gaming agents are committed to working with our federal and local law enforcement partners to investigate criminal activity occurring at the casinos,” said Karen Huey. “The Commission will not tolerate money laundering or drug dealing at any of Ohio’s casinos.”

U.S. Attorney Stewart praised the cooperative investigation by the Ohio Casino Control Commission and the FBI’s Central Ohio Public Corruption Task Force, which includes agents from the FBI and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI).

Mr. Stewart commended the Columbus Division of Police and Police Chief Kim Jacobs for the cooperation they provided during the course of this investigation and thanked the Homeland Security Investigations Bulk Cash Smuggling Task Force for helping initiate this investigation. The Bulk Cash Smuggling Task Force includes agents with Homeland Security Investigations and detectives with the Columbus Police Department, Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and the Ohio State Highway Patrol. Stewart also acknowledged Assistant United States Attorneys Doug Squires and David DeVillers, who prosecuted the case.

Two Broward County Sheriff’s Office Deputies Charged with Conspiracy in Connection with Rothstein Investigation

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida; George L. Piro, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office; José A. Gonzalez, Special Agent in Charge, Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigations (IRS-CI); and Scott Israel, Sheriff, Broward Sheriff’s Office (BSO), announce the filing of charges against David Benjamin, 48, of Boca Raton, and Jeff Alan Poole, 47, of Weston, for conspiring to commit crimes in connection with the operation of the former Fort Lauderdale law firm of Rothstein, Rosenfeldt and Adler P.A. (RRA).

In a criminal information filed earlier today, Benjamin was charged with conspiracy to commit extortion and to violate civil rights, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371. In a separate criminal information also filed today, Poole was charged with conspiracy to violate civil rights, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 241. The charges allege that, during the relevant time period, both defendants were employed by the Broward Sheriff’s Office. Benjamin was a lieutenant and served as executive officer to then Sheriff Al Lamberti. Poole was a detective assigned to the Strategic Investigations Division.

The charging documents allege that both defendants agreed to utilize their respective positions within BSO unlawfully to further the interests of RRA, its chairman and CEO Scott W. Rothstein, and other persons associated with Rothstein. Specifically, the charging documents allege that Benjamin received approximately $185,000 in money and other things of value from Rothstein and RRA in return for providing his assistance when needed, including arranging with Poole to arrest the ex-wife of an attorney who was engaged in a child custody dispute with her, arranging to use force and threats of force against the boyfriend of an escort who was threatening to expose the illicit relationship that existed between the escort and one of the partners at RRA, and assisting Rothstein in loading cash and jewelry onto a private airplane that was used by Rothstein to flee to Morocco on October 27, 2009, as the Ponzi scheme being conducted through RRA was beginning to unravel.

U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer stated, “David Benjamin and Jeff Poole used their official positions as law enforcement officers to commit civil rights abuses to further the interests of Scott Rothstein and others associated with Rothstein. When law enforcement officers betray the trust of the people, it strikes at the very core of our democracy. The informations filed today charging Benjamin and Poole should serve as a reminder that no one is above the law. When law enforcement officers violate the public’s trust, they will be held accountable. Benjamin and Poole are the 19th and 20th accomplices, respectively, to be held accountable in Rothstein’s $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme.”

“When David Benjamin and Jeff Alan Poole began to use their official positions to further the illegal schemes of Rothstein and his cronies, they crossed a very bright line,” said William J. Maddalena, Assistant Special Agent in Charge, FBI Miami. “Their criminal misconduct undermined the public’s trust in law enforcement. As such, the FBI will continue to work with our partners to remove those law enforcement officers who violate the law. The FBI, in particular, would like to thank BSO for their close partnership investigating this matter.”

IRS-CI SAC José A. Gonzalez stated, “Law enforcement officers and individuals in positions of our citizens’ trust are held to an even higher standard than the general public. It’s a sad day when a lieutenant and a detective of the Broward County Sheriff’s Office who are sworn to uphold the law, allegedly misuse their positions by engaging in criminal acts. IRS-CI, together with its law enforcement partners, will continue to ensure that no one operates above the law and are held accountable for their actions.”

BSO Sheriff Scott Israel stated, “Every time a law enforcement officer is implicated in a crime, it’s a blow to our profession. This indictment tarnishes the image of honest, hard-working law enforcement officers everywhere. My immediate action after taking office was to suspend Deputy Poole and Lieutenant Benjamin based on an ongoing federal investigation. I applaud the diligence and professionalism displayed by our federal partners, and we will continue working closely with them to ensure justice is served.”

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI, IRS-CI, and BSO. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lawrence D. LaVecchio, Paul F. Schwartz, and Jeffrey N. Kaplan.

Former Pedophile Officer Jerry Ballinger Will NOT go to Prison After Rape of Child

A former police officer and mentor gets probation—not prison—after pleading guilty to child sex crimes.

Last year, Augusta cop Jerry Ballinger was arrested and charged with having sex with a 14-year-old girl. He entered a plea agreement and will serve his punishment outside the walls of prison.

Some are calling and a slap on the wrist.

Ballinger pleaded guilty in February to one count of aggravated indecent liberties with a child. And just this week, KAKE’s I-Team was the only TV crew in Butler County when Ballinger was sentenced to five years probation.

When the I-Team heard that sentence, we dug deeper to find out what the average sentence is for first time sex offenders.

In Kansas, it's is up to eight years behind bars and the convict will be placed on the state’s sex offender registry for the rest of their life.

Here’s what Judge David Ricke told the 44-year-old former cop in court:

“Ballinger falls into a category of offender who present a problem and concern for society,” he said, “and therefore must be watched closely the rest of his life and supervised.”

Ballinger worked in law enforcement for more that 20 years. He met his 14-year-old victim at the Augusta public safety office when she was volunteering as a junior firefighter.

The girl, a middle school student at the time, testified during a preliminary hearing that the cop befriended her. She said he took her out to the country several times and the two had sexual intercourse last year.

The victim’s father said he is furious with the probation sentence. He said what happened to his little girl will scar her for the rest of her life.

Assistant Butler County Attorney Cheryl Pierce prosecuted the case. She said that based on the fact that he’s 44-years-old and was a cop at the time, and the victim was a 14-year-old girl, Ballinger should be in prison based on that fact alone.

Butler County Attorney Darrin Divinney told the KAKE I-Team he entered the plea deal with Ballinger, saying, “Some cases have overwhelming evidence. This one had only circumstantial evidence. Given that fact, there was a far greater risk of acquittal.”

Divinney told the court he did not join in the defense request of just probation, but he also didn’t actively oppose the request.

Judge Ricke ruled that Ballinger would be better served for treatment on probation instead of behind bars, based on a doctor’s report.

“... The strength of doctor Steffan's evaluation report, which indicated that defendant was a low risk to reoffend, that the defendant was amenable to treatment, and that he had a favorable prognosis for treatment, and that he was favorable candidate for probation."

For many in the community, the sentence was a big disappointment.

Four Paris Officers Arrested for Rape

French media report four police officers are in custody in connection with the alleged rape of a Canadian woman at the Paris police headquarters.

Published reports say the 34-year-old Toronto woman is the daughter of a Canadian police officer and may herself be a police officer too.

The reports allege the woman met with the officers, who are part of an anti-gang squad, at an Irish pub Tuesday night and went with them to the unit’s headquarters.

They cite sources saying she left distraught the next morning and told another officer that she had been raped.

They say three of the officers are accused of being directly involved in the assault, while the other allegedly spoke to the woman after it happened.

The case is being handled by the country’s police watchdog and it’s reported DNA tests are being conducted.

The officers have reportedly denied the allegations.

French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve vowed today to take “all the necessary measures” if the allegations turn out to be true.

Correctional Officer Patrick Harris Arrested for Theft

Patrick Harris, 36, of LaGrange, was arrested Wednesday around 6:30 p.m. at the Troup County Landfill in the 100 block of Parmer Road on theft charges. Harris is a correctional officer at the Troup County Correctional Institute

According to reports, a witness saw Harris driving a truck and pulling a trailer into the property after the gate was secured, which he had keys to.

Deputies arrested Harris as he was leaving the landfill. Several items of scrap metal were found in his trailer.

Harris will be charged with theft by taking, criminal trespassing and violation of oath of office. Additional charges are pending.

Officers David Ayotte & John Melanson Accused of Excessive Force

Investigators have uncovered allegations that two Bellingham, Mass., police officers using excessive force falsely arrested a woman.

The troubling events leading up to the arrest were all caught on camera. Team 5 Investigates' Kathy Curran obtained the exclusive video showing exactly what happened.

Holly Graham, 29, struggled with the two police officers moments before she was placed under arrest in October 2012.

Watch video of encounter with police

The events leading up to her arrest were recorded by Graham on her iPhone which show her questioning the officers as they were leaving her apartment.  Graham told Team 5 she wanted to know why they showed up at her apartment, knocked down her door and searched her home without a warrant.

According to the police report, Officer David Ayotte and Officer John Melanson were looking for Graham's friend who was wanted by police on an outstanding warrant.  Graham claims police told her they were responding to a complaint for loud music.

"Where's the warrant at? You came for loud music, right? That's what you came for? What's that? Loud music?" the video records Graham shouting as she followed both officers down stairs.

A short struggle then ensued in the stairway when the phone was dropped and the video shows Graham on the ground with Ayotte on top of her.

"Can you tell me what was happening at that point?" asked Team 5 Investigates' Curran.

"He had pushed my head into my stairs which split my lip and he was pushing my head against the stairs," said Graham.

Ayotte then accused her of threatening him with a fork as Melanson stood nearby.

"You got a fork in your hand, you come after me?" asked Ayotte.

"I'm not coming after you. I did not come after you," said Graham.

"Who the (expletive) do you think you are?" asked Ayotte.

"I did not come after you," reiterated Graham.

"You're going to jail now, (expletive)," said Ayotte.

According to the police report, Ayotte wrote he felt threatened and at a disadvantage. He said during the skirmish the fork struck the side of his head leaving abrasions.

"You never threatened with a fork?" asked Curran.

"Never," answered Graham.

"Why did you have a fork in your hand," asked Curran.

"I was cooking dinner, I didn't realize I had the fork in my hand," said Graham.

The officers threatened to use chemical spray on her twice. Graham was arrested and charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and assault and battery on a police officer. Prosecutors later dismissed all of the charges.

"Had she not had the videotape, she might have ended up being convicted because it would have been her word against the word of two police officers," said attorney Howard Friedman, who is representing Graham.

Friedman has filed a lawsuit in federal court against officers Ayotte and Melanson alleging they violated Graham's civil rights by illegally entering her apartment, falsely arresting her and using excessive force.

Ayotte declined Team 5's requests for an interview.

"We'd like to ask you some questions about the incident with Holly Graham," said Curran.

"I have no comment, I'm sorry," said Ayotte.

"You think this was a case of excessive force?" asked Curran.

"I have no comment," said Ayotte.

His attorney, Kareem Morgan, told Team 5 Investigates Ayotte believes his actions were justified and he did what was necessary to defend himself.

Melanson never got back to Team 5 Investigates despite repeated requests for comment.

"I look at police a whole other way now. You know, I don't look at them as protectors or public servants. I fear them and you shouldn't fear the people who are supposed to help you," said Graham.

Bellingham Police Chief Gerry Daigle told Team 5 Investigates his department did not conduct an internal investigation because he believes his officers' actions were justified.

This wasn't the first time the police officers involved had contact with Graham. At the time of this incident, Graham had faced charges in several different cases but was never convicted.

Corrections Officer Jose Maria-Macias Arrested for Sexual Abuse of Minor

A 23-year-old former corrections officer at the Buckeye prison has been booked into Maricopa County Jail for allegedly having a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old girl.

Phoenix police spokesman Sgt. Trent Crump said sexually explicit text messages were found on the 15-year-old's phone on April 21, and on April 24, witnesses called police to report what they believed to be sexual exploitation of a minor.

Investigators interviewed the victim who said it began on April 5 with text messages and led to sexual abuse.

Search warrants were served at the home of Jose Maria-Macias, 23, and detectives found evidence supporting the allegations, Crump said.

Maria-Macias was arrested at the Arizona State Prison Complex-Lewis and faces five counts of sexual conduct with a minor, one count of sexual abuse of a minor, one count of sexual exploitation of a minor and one count of luring a minor for sexual exploitation.

Arizona Department of Corrections spokesman Bill Lamoreaux said Maria-Macias was hired on Dec. 16, 2013 and assigned to ASPC-Lewis on Feb. 1 after graduating from the academy.

Lamoreaux said Maria-Macias resigned from the department at the time of his arrest.

Sgt. Corey Tolbert Charged with Assaulting Wife

A police officer has been charged with assault after his Texas trooper wife allegedly was hit by a pickup truck pulling a trailer at their home.

Texas Department of Public Safety officials say Cuero police Sgt. Corey Tolbert was charged Friday with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon causing serious bodily injury/family violence.

Jail records for DeWitt and Lavaca counties show Tolbert, whose bond was set at $200,000, was no longer in custody Monday.

Texas Rangers helped investigate the April 17 incident when Trooper Elizabeth Tolbert allegedly was struck. KAVU-TV reports the trailer rolled over her legs. The Victoria Advocate reports the trooper spent several days hospitalized.

Jailers had no attorney information for Corey Tolbert, who's on paid administrative leave.

Cuero police and DPS officials didn't immediately return messages Monday.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Detention Officer Keenan Notae Arrested for Rape

A DeKalb County detention officer is behind bars on accusations that he sexually assaulted a woman after getting her drunk, officials said.

Keenan Notae, 24, was arrested Wednesday by DeKalb County police and charged with rape, sodomy and furnishing alcohol to a person under age, authorities said.

On Jan. 14, DeKalb police spokesman Capt. Stephen Fore said he went on a date with a 19-year-old woman and gave her alcoholic drinks.

"She became intoxicated and was sexually assaulted by Notae," Fore said in an email to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Investigators found forensic evidence from the incident that they sent for testing.

Fore said the results authorities received Wednesday "were conclusive enough for detectives to obtain arrest warrants for Notae."

Notae was arrested at his home Wednesday night, police said.

A DeKalb detention officer for three years, Notae is being held at the jail in lieu of $500 bond, according to jail records. He is segregated from the general population, DeKalb County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Cynthia Williams told the AJC.

Notae has also been suspended without pay pending the results of the investigation, Williams said.

He is scheduled to make his first court appearance this afternoon.

Officer Lacy Ward Arrested for Selling Oxycodone

The Warsaw police officer arrested by the SBI, accused of conspiring to sell Oxycodone, has been fired according to the Jones County Sheriff's Office. Deputies continue to search for another drug suspect in the case.

Jones County deputies say Officer Lacy Ward, who works for the Warsaw Police Department, was arrested just before 5:00 p.m. on charges of conspiracy to sell and deliver Schedule II controlled substances, that being Oxycodone. She is also arrested for interfering with an investigation.

Det. Timothy Corey says Ward was caught on video in a truck with James Parker III of Kinston while they say he was selling drugs to an undercover officer. Corey says at that point they notified the SBI and the FBI.

Ward at one time was a narcotics officer with the Warsaw Police Department, but was on regular patrol at the time of her arrest.

Deputies are still looking for the 29-year-old Parker, who was the subject of the original drug investigation.

Former Officer Marcos Carrion Charged with Intent to Distribute Cocaine

Former Houston Police Department (HPD) officer Marcos E. Carrion, 36, has surrendered to authorities, announced United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson today.

Carrion was charged in a sealed indictment returned April 16, 2014. It was unsealed as Carrion turned himself into authorities this morning. He is expected to make his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge George C. Hanks Jr. at 2:00 p.m. today.

Carrion is charged with conspiring with others to possess with the intent to distribute five or more kilograms of cocaine from mid-2013 through April 2014.

Carrion, a five-year HPD veteran, had recently resigned from his position.

If convicted, he faces a minimum of 10 years and up to life in federal prison as well as a possible $10 million fine.

The charges are the result of a six-month investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration with the assistance of HPD and the FBI. The case will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Mark E. Donnelly and Shelley J. Hicks.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence. A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.

Corrections Officer Jimmie Sturdivant Arrested for Soliciting a Minor

A Texas Department of Criminal Justice Corrections Officer has been arrested for alleged online solicitation of a minor.

According to the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office, Jimmie Leon Sturdivant, 43, traveled from Snyder to Abilene to meet up with a 13-year-old for sex.

The TCSO says the incident is not connected to Sturdivant’s employment as a corrections officer.

Sturdivant is being held on a $50,000 bond.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Ex-Officer Kevin Canty Fatally Shoots Wife

News of the horror came from the mouths of mere babes.

“Daddy shot mommy!” two hysterical children — a 4-year-old girl and 7-year-old boy — screamed inside a Queens bodega. “Daddy shot mommy!”

Around the corner from the Casablanca deli on Saturday, cops were combing a bloody crime scene. An unhinged former cop shot and killed his wife in front of their two young kids in Ozone Park just before 11 a.m., police sources said.

Cops found ex-cop Kevin Canty, 43, stumbling around drunk near the corner of 97th and Centreville Sts. He was arrested without further violence.

Paramedics, meanwhile, were feverishly working on 40-year-old Jessica Mera. They took the mom from the couple’s home on 104th St., past the front door adorned with an Easter bunny decoration and into a waiting ambulance. Mera, blasted in the chest, could not be saved. She died at Jamaica Hospital.

As cops carted the dreadlocked gunman to the 102nd Precinct stationhouse, a neighbor took the traumatized children to the nearby deli.

"The boy told me personally: 'My dad shot my mom and there's blood all over,’” said the neighbor who asked to remain anonymous.

“My wife heard gunshots and the kids were running out on the street,” he added. “They were banging on car doors as cars were passing by. They were trying to get help, someone to listen to them.”

Before Canty was arrested, cops in body armor and carrying bullet-proof shields descended on the home. NYPD helicopters hovered overhead. A 911 caller told police that a man fitting Canty’s description was trying to open the doors of unoccupied cars a mile and a half away from the crime scene, authorities said.

Canty appeared delirious while handcuffed and repeatedly banged his head against the inside of a squad car window.

About 10 stunned friends and family of Mera’s had little to say as they lingered at the entrance of the emergency room.

“They are going through a really tough time right now,” said one man who only identified himself as Mera’s friend.

“You have no idea what this family has been through — this is only the tip of the iceberg.”

Several neighbors said the couple had four children, though it was unclear if any of them were from previous relationships.

The callous crime amounted to a stunning downfall for Canty, sources said. In July 2012 the former transit cop was hailed as a hero for helping save the life of a man who suffered a heart attack in the Union Square subway station.

Police sources said he retired last year due to a disability.

The nature of the disability was unclear.

Canty and his wife had a tumultuous relationship, several neighbors said.

“They were always fighting. They’d fight outside, they would fight everywhere,” said Joanne Bagley, 52. “They were not a happy couple. I guess it was inevitable.”

Shanique Varlack, 22, described Canty as a drunken terror who often threatened his wife.

“He told more than one person - 'I'm gonna kill this b---h one day,’” said Varlack.

“Everybody is just so distraught. He's a cop. He's supposed to protect us. He took an oath and now? He's a murderer. She did not deserve to die.”

The shaken deli worker who consoled the distraught kids said Canty and Mera were regulars.

 “I’d see him everyday,” deliman Fez Atlas said. “I knew what he’d want when he came in. He would come in, get a pack of Newports.

“His wife would come in, in the morning with the kids,” he added. “She’d buy the girl a bag of potato chips and the boy pistachios. Then this happened.”

A man in Laurelton, Queens, who only identified himself as Canty’s uncle-in-law said of the ex-cop, “He’s a nice guy. This is the first I’m hearing about this.”

But other neighbors said Canty had a menacing presence.

“He’s kind of a scary guy, kind of intimidating. You got to talk to him for him to talk to you,” said Danny Ali, 30.

“He told me he was a detective. About a year ago, I saw he had a broken hand. He said he broke it in a fight. He wouldn’t say more about it.”

Chris Ris said he often saw Canty around Ozone Park wearing construction boots and dusty pants, apparently on the way home from a job in construction. On nice days, Canty’s wife sat on the stoop with her children, Ris said. “To me he seemed like a nice guy,” said Ris, a music producer. “I’d never dream he’d kill his wife.”
News of the horror came from the mouths of mere babes.

Former Officer Christopher Hays to Stand Trial for Abusing Women

A former San Diego police officer was ordered Wednesday to stand trial on five counts of mistreating women while on duty.

Christopher Hays, an officer for four years before resigning after his arrest in February, was ordered by Superior Court Judge Charles Rogers to stand trial on two counts of felony false imprisonment and three counts of misdemeanor battery.

Rogers' decision came after a preliminary hearing in which three women testified that Hays touched them inappropriately. Hays' attorney argued that the women's drug use and criminal records made their testimony unreliable, but Rogers disagreed.

A police investigator testified that Hays broke into tears when told of the allegations against him and asked if the case would "go away" if he resigned.

Also on Wednesday, officials disclosed that Officer Gilbert Lorenzo was arrested Tuesday in La Mesa on suspicion of domestic violence. Lorenzo, 31, a seven-year veteran of the San Diego department, was booked into county jail after his wife called police to say he had assaulted her.

Lorenzo has been suspended without pay, officials said.

At a news conference, Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman repeated her vow not to tolerate the mistreatment of women by the department's officers.

Hays, 30, received a medal in 2012 for dashing into a burning building to save a woman who was trapped on the second floor. He also served with the Marines in Iraq as a lance corporal.

Lorenzo has not yet been charged or arraigned.

The Hays' case marks the second time in recent years that a San Diego officer has been charged with assaulting women while on duty.

In 2011, Officer Anthony Arevalos was convicted of demanding sexual favors from women after making traffic stops. He was fired after charges were brought. He was sentenced to eight years and eight months in prison.

The City Council has approved a total of $2.3 million in payments to women assaulted by Arevalos. One case has gone to trial.

In the wake of Hays' arrest, the City Council requested that the Department of Justice perform an audit of the police department's hiring, supervision and internal affairs practices.

Mayor Kevin Faulconer said the audit is needed to restore trust in the police department that may have eroded because of the Hays case and other instances of misconduct by officers.

Among other things, officials want suggestions on how to better detect problem officers. The audit will take six months and be funded by the Department of Justice.

Corrections Officer John Kamphaus Arrested for Soliciting a Minor

A Hamilton County Justice Center corrections officer faces a single charge after authorities say he went online to try to meet and have sex with a 15-year-old girl.

The officer, 40-year-old John Kamphaus, was arrested early Wednesday morning near Mills Road Park in Independence, Ky. as an undercover police officer posing as that teen chatted with him on his smartphone.

As court documents show, Kamphaus, known as BigDog06900@aol.com online, exchanged messages with Detective Stephen Benner, a Kenton County Internet Crimes Against Children task force officer, about 4 times this year.

"Our officer is on-line in chat rooms," said Kenton County Police Chief Brian Capps. "He just is waiting to be contacted by folks out there in cyberland for lack of a better term. He was contacted by this gentleman and a chat begins. Our officer had no idea who he was talking to on the other end."

At about 1:20 a.m. Kenton County police officers initiated a traffic stop and pulled Kamphaus over on Marshall Road shortly after he sent a final message via Yahoo messenger.

"He believed he was going to be meeting this female for sexual activity," Capps said. "The chats leading up to this were sexual in nature."

Officers arrested the father of three young children without incident and took his cellphone as evidence.

"In this particular case, being another law enforcement officer, I just describe it as being very disappointing," Capps said of Kamphaus' arrest. "Kind of a letdown that someone in your profession would be involved in this kind of thing."

Kamphaus appeared for video arraignment on one charge of prohibited use of electronic means to induce a minor to engage in sexual activities Wednesday morning at about 9 a.m.

He received a $2,500 bond and was ordered to surrender all electronic devices to the court. If he posted bond, the judge also ordered Kamphaus to wear a GPS tracking device once released from jail.

Kamphaus, a Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office employee since 1996, was also placed on unpaid administrative leave by Hamilton County until the disposition of his case was resolved.

Hamilton County Sheriff officials said they launched their own internal affairs investigation to see if Kamphaus used county equipment to attempt to communicate with minors online.

Kenton County Commonwealth Attorney Rob Sanders said he was not surprised that even a law enforcement officer could get caught in such an online investigation.

"I think it's just a sense that it's not going to happen to me, I'm not the one that will get caught. I'm not the one that's going to end up on the news," said Sanders, whose office will prosecute the case. "Obviously in the situation we're talking about with the most recent charges, it's a law enforcement officer that got caught -- that's been arrested -- and been charged. He's innocent until proven guilty, but certainly if a law enforcement officer is getting arrested they more than anybody should know that there are cops out there looking for this and investigating this and just setting a trap for somebody to walk into."

Sanders said he believed such potential sexual predator situations are only increasing online, and that the job of such undercover officers as Benner were so important.

"I'm glad there's cops out there like Detective Benner that are trolling the Internet looking for these predators and doing whatever they can to try and take them off the streets before they actually get their hands on another young girl," Sanders said.

Officer Jodi Royer Arrested for Stealing Money from Evidence Room

A Reading cop is under arrest for allegedly stealing money from the Reading Police Department’s evidence room. Investigators say Jodi Royer, 47, of Sinking Springs, took over thousands of dollars of cash evidence from criminal investigations for his own personal use.

Reading Police Chief William Heim reported the suspected theft to the Berks County District Attorney’s Office on March 18th. Berks County Detectives started an investigation that led to Royer’s arrest. On March 14th, Royer was caught by his supervisor trying to replace over $2,000 of U.S. currency from a criminal case with his own money. Police knew it was not the evidence cash because the denominations of the bills were different.

Detectives conducted an audit and discovered six additional criminal cases were tampered with. In four of those cases, the money was stolen and not recovered. The total loss in those cases is $14,484. In the other cases, the stolen money was replaced by Royer.

Royer surrendered this morning and taken to the Berks County Sheriff Department’s Central Processing Center for processing and arraignment.

Royer joined the Reading Police Department in the fall of 1990 and has worked in the Evidence/Property Unit since April of 2011.

Officer Investigated After Man Severely Injured After Arrest

An internal investigation is underway into an incident between a Chillicothe Police officer and a man he arrested.

The officer arrested the man for public intoxication Saturday morning.

While in police custody he ended up with a black eye. He also says he has a concussion.
           
The Chillicothe Police officer involved says he found 24 year old Matt Mitchell apparently drunk and urinating on a building on the corner of North Paint and East Second Streets when he took him into custody.

Mitchell denies that, and disagrees with just about everything else police say happened during an incident that ended with him being airlifted to a hospital in Columbus.

Matt Mitchell admits he has a criminal record.

He admits he'd been drinking at a Chillicothe bar late Friday into Saturday.

But he says nothing in his past, or his actions this weekend, justify the injuries he suffered while in police custody.

"From right here, all the way down here, back in through here, all the way down through here is fractured,” Mitchell said, pointing to his blackened eye. “And I got a mild concussion in my head."

He says he was being booked inside the Ross County Jail when he lost his footing and ended up on all fours.

"And I heard them- they thought I was doing something, reach down to my socks or something,” Mitchell said. “They said ‘lay down on the ground now!’ I said ‘okay, that's where I'm going’ then. And I looked over to see who said it to me, and the next think I know, just boom. I got hit, right here in the side of my face by something. I don't know what it was."

The incident report tells a different story, describing Mitchell as disorderly and uncooperative.

Here’s the series of events as written by the officer, whom 10TV is not naming because he has not been found guilty of wrongdoing:

"(Officer) told him numerous times to stop trying to pull away so (officer) could take the handcuffs off but as before he continued to refuse.  As (officer) went to take off one of the handcuffs, Mr. Mitchell started pushing his body off of the wall and trying to pull his arms back toward him yelling...  He then tried to spin around so he would be facing Ofc. At this point (officer) grabbed a hold of Mr. Mitchell and tried to put him on the ground so he could be better controlled, however he continued to resist causing (officer) to use more force to put him down. Just as he started to fall with (officer) coming down behind him, (officer) heard Mr. Mitchell's head strike the ground. Mr. Mitchell was knocked unconscious."
           
"That did not happen at all,” said Mitchell.  “There was nobody that fell behind me on top of me. No. I know exactly what happened. I got hit in the face."

Mitchell was flown to a Columbus hospital and was released Sunday.

He says he is confident security camera video of the incident will back up his version of events.
    
Chillicothe Police Chief Roger Moore has asked the Sheriff's Office not to release video of the incident until his internal investigation is complete.

He says that should take a couple of days, but says even then, he will have no comment on this matter.

Officer Bradley Wax Arrested for Child Porn

A New Orleans police officer has been arrested and booked under allegations of possessing child pornography.

According to the Louisiana Attorney General's Office, Bradley Wax, 54, has been arrested and charged with 38 counts of possessing pornography involving juveniles.

Wax, a 16-year veteran assigned to the New Orleans Police Department's 4th District, was arrested in St. Tammany and has been booked in the St. Tammany Parish jail.

According to the attorney general's office, an undercover operation led investigators to securing a search warrant on Wax's home in January. After searching his computer and other electronic devices, investigators found Wax had child pornography.

The NOPD has placed Wax on emergency suspension without pay pending the outcome of an ongoing criminal investigation. He faces 20 years in prison on each count of child pornography.

The case was a joint investigation by the attorney general's cyber crimes unit, the St. Tammany Sheriff's Office and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Officer Gilbert Lorenzo Arrested for Domestic Violence

A San Diego police officer with seven years on the force faces possible felony prosecution following his arrest on suspicion of beating his wife, department officials announced Wednesday.

Gilbert Anthony Lorenzo, 31, was taken into custody Tuesday in La Mesa, where he lives, then jailed and placed on compulsory leave without pay, SDPD Chief Shelley Zimmerman said.

"Our department fully cooperated with this investigation with La Mesa (police) and coordinated the arrest of our officer," Zimmerman told reporters. "I immediately revoked his police powers and suspended him from our department."

Lorenzo's arrest opened another in a series of cases involving alleged misconduct on the part of San Diego police officers. Among the accusations are sexual abuse of female detainees and drunken driving.

La Mesa police Lt. Matt Nicholass said his department was alerted to Lorenzo's alleged violence by an SDPD representative around 1:45 p.m. Tuesday.

"La Mesa detectives immediately began investigating the case and coordinated with San Diego Police Department and ultimately determined that he (Lorenzo) was, in fact, a suspect, and he was arrested," Nicholass said.

The officer's spouse did not require hospital treatment, the lieutenant said. Nicholass declined to disclose other details about the alleged abuse, including where it purportedly occurred.

Lorenzo, who is assigned to the SDPD Northern Division, was booked into county jail on suspicion of felony domestic battery. He posted $50,000 bail and was released.

Zimmerman told news crews during a late-morning briefing that someone alerted the San Diego police communications center about the alleged domestic abuse. She would not say who made the call.

The chief described the allegations against Lorenzo as a blow to the morale of her entire agency.

"I was very disappointed -- very disappointed -- to hear this news, and I can tell you our officers were very disappointed to hear this news," Zimmerman said.

She said SDPD officials would not tolerate the choices of  "a very few" officers to "discredit our badge" and "dishonor our noble profession."

Two months ago, SDPD officer Christopher Hays, 30, was charged with felony false imprisonment and misdemeanor sexual battery in connection with his detention of several women. He resigned from the department the next day.

On Wednesday morning, following a two-day preliminary hearing, a judge ordered Hays to stand trial in the case. The ex-officer faces up to three years and eight months in prison if convicted.

Also in February, SDPD officials announced that another one of their officers had been placed on leave amid similar accusations. A woman alleged that patrolman Donald Moncrief, 39, groped her and exposed himself after arresting her last year.

On Feb. 22, SDPD Detective Karen Almos, 47, was arrested on suspicion of DUI after being found passed out in a parked car in Balboa Park. She pleaded guilty this month to driving while intoxicated and was sentenced to five years' probation and ordered to pay a fine of about $2,100.

In 2011, then-SDPD Officer Anthony Arevalos was accused of sexually assaulting five women during traffic stops for suspected drunken driving in the Gaslamp Quarter. He ultimately was convicted and sentenced to almost nine years in prison.

Officer Gilbert Lorenzo Arrested for Domestic Violence

A 7-year veteran officer with the San Diego Police Department was arrested on domestic violence allegations Tuesday. Now, both SDPD and La Mesa police are investigating 31-year-old Gilbert Lorenzo, known as Anthony.

San Diego police officials have taken swift action against one of its officers who was arrested and booked into county jail Tuesday evening for a domestic violence, marking another in a long list of troubles currently plaguing the police department.

“I was very disappointed to hear this news, and I can tell you that our officers were very disappointed to learn this news,” said SDPD Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman at a press conference about the arrest on Wednesday.

According to SDPD officials, La Mesa police contacted their communications center at about 1:45 p.m. Tuesday and reported that an SDPD officer who lived in La Mesa may have been involved in a domestic violence incident.

SDPD said they quickly began investigating the incident alongside LMPD officials.

Both investigations later determined that 31-year-old SDPD officer Gilbert A. Lorenzo was in fact a suspect in a domestic violence incident, according to police.

SDPD said the incident involved domestic battery against the suspect’s wife. They said they were in contact with the woman and were working with her after the incident occurred. According to police, she did not require medical treatment.

Once police determined Lorenzo was the suspect, he was arrested and booked into county jail on $50,000 bail Tuesday evening, SDPD officials said. He later posted bail.

Lorenzo was working SDPD’s Northern Division and worked in the Mid-City Division in the past, according to police. He’s said to be a seven year veteran of the department.

Although Lorenzo has not yet been charged, due to his arrest, SDPD officials said his police powers were revoked and he was suspended without pay as the investigation continued.

At Wednesday's press conference, Zimmerman highlighted the swift action SDPD took against Lorenzo after investigating the incident.

“We are not going to tolerate misbehavior on the part of our officers," Zimmerman said.

Lorenzo’s arrest is yet another setback for SDPD which has dealt with a string of troubles in recent months, including allegations of misconduct against its officers.

On the same day as Lorenzo’s arrest, a now former SDPD officer Christopher Hays was held over for trial on sexual misconduct charges.

Zimmerman made clear her determination to combat officer misconduct.

“Our officers, civilians and volunteers serve everyday with honor, distinction, professionalism and to the… very few again, this incident right here and those others that have acted as individuals and made the terrible decision to discredit our badge and to dishonor our noble profession, we are not going to tolerate it, and as you can see this happened very quickly,” Zimmerman said referring to the officer's suspension.

Former Officer Christopher Inserra Pleads Guilty to Fraud

A former police officer accused of rocking out on stage as the lead singer of a metal band called Cousin Sleaze while he claimed he couldn't work because of an arm injury pleaded guilty to fraud on Tuesday.

Christopher Inserra entered the plea in federal court in Brooklyn. He left court without speaking to reporters.

Inserra, 32, was arrested last year on charges accusing him of fraudulently collecting more than $30,000 in disability payments in the nearly two years he was out sick from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Department. He returned to work in March 2012 but resigned on Monday.

According to a criminal complaint, Inserra had told the police department that while on duty at the World Trade Center in June 2010, he hurt his arm helping take an injured Port Authority employee to a medical facility. At an initial evaluation, he claimed that he suffered from a "tremendous amount of pain" around his right elbow and lower biceps, it said.

The department agreed to give him time off with full pay. He also filed claims with an insurance company that resulted in two payments totaling $30,486.

Authorities alleged that Inserra, despite collecting disability, continued to perform as the frontman of Brooklyn-based Cousin Sleaze. Photos of performances from April 2011 show him "repeatedly moving his arms in a punching motion" and "violently flailing his arm in an up-and-down motion," a criminal complaint said.

In September 2011, after Inserra told doctors he was still in intense pain, the band hit the road for a tour called "Miles of Mayhem." Video footage from performances in Athens, Ga., Cocoa Beach, Fla., and elsewhere shows Inserra fist pumping and thrashing around without any signs of discomfort, the complaint says.

Inserra faces up to 14 months in prison at sentencing on Aug. 5. He also must forfeit the $30,486.

Police Officer Accused of Raping Child Remains Free Until Court Date

Despite facing a potential life sentence for the offense, the senior-constable — who was charged by colleagues at his own station — was never arrested. Instead he was handed a court attendance­ notice instructing him to ­appear at Goulburn Local Court on June 18.

The 40-year-old, attached to the southern region, was charged with aggravated sexual intercourse with a child under the age of 10 years and assault occasioning actual harm. The complaint was made in October over offences that allegedly occurred earlier last year.

The policeman’s colleagues chose to issue a future court attendance notice with strict conditions, including an ­apprehended violence order protecting his alleged victim, despite the offenses carrying maximum penalties of life ­imprisonment and five years in jail respectively.

He continued to work as a police officer while under ­investigation and was only formally suspended, with pay, at 5pm yesterday.

Police Minister Mike Gallacher last night said he would “be making formal inquiries with the Commissioner (Andrew Scipione) to ascertain the full facts relating to this matter”.

Child protection advocacy group Bravehearts founder and CEO Hetty Johnston said she was concerned by the police court notice process.

“These are two serious charges against a child and this person should not be released. If there’s a legality that has ­allowed this person to be freed, it must be changed,” Ms Johnston said.

A NSW police spokeswoman said the decision to issue the court attendance ­notice instead of arresting the officer came after advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions that there was “sufficient evidence to lay charges”.

“An interim apprehended violence order is in place for the protection of the alleged victims and witnesses,” she said. “There is no automatic presumption against bail.”

The spokeswoman said ­investigators considered it ­appropriate to issue the court notice, as was allowed under the Law Enforcement (Powers and Responsibilities) Act.

Police also defended the four days it took to publicly release information about the charge — at 9.07pm on Monday. “As per NSW Police protocol, a media release was issued once the appropriate approval processes were completed,” she said.

In January it emerged one in 40 serving officers in NSW had committed an offence, with 437 serving officers having criminal convictions. Ten police officers have been charged in the past month. On March 28, a 29-year-old senior-constable was charged with aggravated indecent ­assault and indecent assault of two other officers between 2011 and 2012 at a city police station.

The police spokeswoman said no police officer was ­“exempt from the law”.

NSW POLICE RAP SHEET OF SHAME

April 20: Constable charged with low range drink driving at Tempe. Will appear at Balmain Local Court on May 14.

April 18: Constable charged after running red light and involved in police pursuit at Eastwood. Charged with police pursuit under Skye’s Law and two counts of not stopping at red light. Will appear at Burwood Local Court on June 4.

April 17: Senior constable charged with aggravated sexual intercourse with child under 10 and assault occasioning actual bodily harm in Southern Region. Will appear at Goulburn Local Court on June 18.

April 11: Constable charged with common assault and police officer take detrimental action for reprisal. Will appear at Newtown Local Court on May 27.

April 11: Senior constable charged with make false official instrument to pervert course of justice, allegedly creating a false record. Will appear at Maitland Local Court on May 19.

April 2: Police officer attached to specialist command charged with making threats over the telephone against a private business. Charged 38-year-old constable with using carriage service to threaten serious harm. Will appear at Downing Centre Local Court on April 23.

April 1: Senior constable charged with low-range drink driving at Glebe. Will appear at Balmain Local Court on April 30.

March 28: A 29-year-old senior constable charged with aggravated indecent assault and indecent assault of two other officers between December 2011 and April 2013. Will appear at Downing Centre Local Court on April 29.

March 27: A 47-year-old constable charged with intimidation after domestic-related incidents. Will appear at Port Macquarie Local Court on April 24.

March 24: At 10pm, senior constable driving Toyota RAV-4 charged with mid-range drink driving after registering a 0.102 reading. Later charged with assaulting police and resisting police. Will appear at Orange Local Court on April 24.

Officer Ben Erskine Arrested for DUI


A Cocoa police officer is off the streets after being arrested for DUI.

Cocoa police said Officer Ben Erskine was pulled over for speeding in late February and charged with driving under the influence.

Officer Erskine has been on administrative duty since then.

He is a been with the Cocoa Police Department for six years.

The State Attorney's Office is investigating the case.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Former Officer William Garcia Found Guilty of Credit Card Fraud

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and George L. Piro, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office, announce the conviction of William Garcia, 39, a detective with the Sweetwater Police Department.

On April 21, 2014, a jury in U.S. District Court found Garcia guilty on 12 counts. Specifically, the defendant was found guilty of one count conspiring to produce, use, or traffic in one or more counterfeit access devices, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371; one count of use of a counterfeit access device, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1029(a)(1); and ten counts of aggravated identity theft, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1028A(a)(1). Garcia faces a mandatory minimum sentence of two years’ imprisonment and a maximum sentence of 35 years in prison.

At trial, the United States presented evidence documenting Garcia’s improper friendship with a former confidential source. The confidential source, a convicted felon, provided Garcia and another former South Miami Detective Richard Munoz with counterfeit credit cards. During the trial, the source, Munoz, and others testified about Garcia’s possession and use of those cards during shopping trips to Miami-Dade County shopping malls in 2010 and early 2011. During a meeting in late December 2010, Garcia was recorded providing his own personal credit card for use in stealing account numbers and manufacturing counterfeit cards.

Additional evidence at trial showed that Garcia was caught on videotape bringing eight counterfeit credit cards to the residence of the confidential source. During that and other recorded meetings, Garcia explained that he had taken the counterfeit cards from work and that he would share them with the confidential source. During the next two weeks, Garcia was recorded discussing his use of the cards at restaurants, movies, and a mall. Garcia’s presence during the transactions was further documented through use of phone records, placing Garcia’s cell phone in the area of each transaction at the time it occurred.

After the verdict, U.S. District Court Judge Federico Moreno remanded Garcia pending sentencing on June 26, 2014, at 9:30 a.m. in Miami. Munoz, who himself pleaded guilty on March 13, 2014, to related fraud charges, is presently set for sentencing in front of Judge Moreno on May 9, 2014.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI Miami Area Corruption Task Force, the FBI Miami Cyber Task Force, and the Sweetwater Police Department. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Anthony Lacosta and Sarah Schall.

Two South Carolina Officers Charged with Using Excessive Force


The Department of Justice announced that a federal grand jury in Florence, South Carolina returned a two-count indictment today charging Eric Walters and Franklin Brown, both former police officers with the city of Marion Police Department, with using unreasonable force against a female citizen.

Walters and Brown have each been charged with one count of deprivation of rights under color of law, specifically alleging that, while acting as police officers, each defendant used unreasonable force on the victim, resulting in bodily injury. The indictment alleges that on April 2, 2013, Walters and Brown each used their respective tasers multiple times on the victim.

If convicted, each defendant faces a statutory maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

This case is being investigated by the Myrtle Beach, South Carolina Resident Agency of the FBI. It is being prosecuted by Trial Attorneys Nicholas Murphy and Henry Leventis for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and U.S. Attorney Bill Nettles and Assistant U.S. Attorney John Potterfield for the District of South Carolina.

Officer George Bermudez On Leave After Tripping and Pushing Students

Georgetown police have placed an officer on paid administrative leave pending an internal affairs investigation into his actions following a state championship soccer game held in the city over the weekend.

The move to put Officer George Bermudez on leave came after an incident following Vandegrift High School’s win in the University Interscholastic League championship game on Saturday. In video taken from the game broadcast, as well as from fans, you can see what appears to be a uniformed Georgetown police officer tripping and pushing students as they rush onto the field after the win.

Bermudez has been with the department since 2005.

A spokesman for the Georgetown Police Department said parents began emailing the department early Sunday morning, alerting them of the video.

“After personally watching the videos, the actions of my officer are very concerning to me as well,” said Georgetown Police Chief Wayne Nero.

As you see students rush the field after the win, a uniformed Georgetown police officer can be seen sticking his leg out to trip a high school student. He then tries to trip another student.

Then, YouTube video shot by a student at the game shows one of them limping off the field.

Cell phone video sent to ReportIt@KXAN.com also shows the officer pushing two girls off the field.

KXAN spoke to the 16-year-old student who watched all of this unfold while shooting the video on his phone.

“He should’ve used better judgement,” Rohan Gupta said. “We’re high schoolers just trying to have some fun after our team won.”

The Georgetown Police Department issued a statement Sunday evening.

“Georgetown administrators have taken the information and will be forwarding it to internal affairs for review and investigation,” GPD Captain Roland Waits said.