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.