Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Retired Officer Stephen Robert Deck Found Guilty of Attempted Lewd Act with Child

A retired California Highway Patrol lieutenant was convicted today of trying to have sex with someone he thought was a 13-year-old girl who was actually an adult undercover officer.

Stephen Robert Deck, 55, a Carlsbad resident who spent 23 years with the CHP, was found guilty of one felony count of attempted lewd acts on a child under 14, the Orange County district attorney's office said.

StephenDeck Deck was among 13 men swept up in a 2006 undercover sting by the Laguna Beach Police Department.

He initially had conversations over the Internet with a person he believed was a 13-year-old girl. He was in fact communicating with an adult volunteer from Perverted-Justice.com, a nonprofit organization that works with law enforcement nationwide to catch Internet sexual predators, prosecutors said.

Deck continued online communications and phone calls with an undercover officer who sounded young, authorities said. He made graphic sexual comments, including a statement about eating pie, according to prosecutors.

After arranging to meet the girl, Deck showed up at a Laguna Beach apartment with a key lime pie and a digital camera, prosecutors said. He was arrested at the scene.

He is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 22 at the Santa Ana courthouse. He could serve up to four years in state prison.

Officer John McCalister Charged with Assault

John McCalister, the Oakwood police officer who was charged with misdemeanor assault after striking a man inside a Dayton Rite Aid Pharmacy, submitted a letter of retirement, according to Oakwood Public Safety Chief Alex Bebris.

The letter said McCalister’s retirement was effective Dec. 18, Bebris said Monday, Dec. 21.

McCalister, 46, was caught on the pharmacy’s surveillance camera, striking Paul Watts, 48, of Dayton on Oct. 14 at 1158 Wilmington Ave. Watts did not attempt to strike back at McCalister, according to the video.

McCalister retired as a part of a written agreement between himself, the City of Oakwood and his union, the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #107, Bebris said.

McCalister has been with the Oakwood Public Safety Department for 14 years and was a former Dayton Firefighter.

Neither John McCalister nor his attorney, Richard Skelton, could be reached for comment.

McCalister, along with wife and fellow Oakwood Officer Tiffany McCalister, had been on administrative leave since Oct. 30, according to letters filed in their personnel files.

John McCalister turned in his retirement letter before he was interviewed for the city’s internal investigation, Bebris said.

Tiffany McCalister witnessed the Oct. 14 event, according to a Dayton police report. She has not been charged.

The portion of the report that was released to the public said John McCalister advised his wife to go to a car and get a gun, but did not say if she actually sought a weapon.

“It is my understanding that no gun was shown,” said special prosecutor Michael Shiels, the city of Springfield’s chief prosecutor. However, he also said, “I don’t want to discuss the details of the case.”

Stephanie Cook, Dayton’s chief prosecutor, recused her office from the case because of a conflict of interest.

John McCalister is scheduled to appear at a pre-trial hearing before Judge John Pickrel on Feb. 23.

Tiffany McCalister was taken off of administrative leave last week and is now on sick leave, Bebris said.

“She is welcomed to come back to work,” Bebris said. He didn’t know when she would return, but said she is currently scheduled to return to work this week. He said also her internal investigation will be finished when she returns to work.

“I’m hoping that everyone involved is able to move forward on this,” Bebris said.

Former Officer Jay Simon Will be Allowed to Speak with His Children

A former Gurnee police officer accused of molesting two preteen girls will be allowed to speak with his children over the holidays - if the children elect to do so.

A Lake County circuit court judge on Monday granted the request of Jay Simon, 37, of Round Lake Park, to speak with his sons during the holidays, provided the sons contact Simon first.

Simon was arrested in June 2008 and charged with predatory criminal sexual assault and aggravated criminal abuse for, authorities said, molesting the two girls following an investigation by the Lake County Children's Advocacy Center.

The girls, who were under the age of 13, were molested in three separate attacks dating to November 2006, prosecutors said.

He was also charged with aggravated unlawful restraint, official misconduct and aggravated assault following a 2007 incident in which he identified himself as a police officer and used his duty handgun to threaten a man linked to his estranged wife, authorities said.

Simon has pleaded not guilty. He faces the possibility of multiple prison sentences of up to 30 years if convicted of all the most serious charges.

Simon has been released on $1 million bond since his arrest but is under a 24-hour home confinement and is allowed to leave only to go to court or to meet with his lawyer.

His trial is expected to begin Jan. 15.

Officer Anthony Green Arrested for DUI

Patrol Officer Anthony Mathew Green repeatedly expressed interest in joining the St. Petersburg Police Department's traffic enforcement division.

But that goal and his law enforcement career were endangered by his arrest this weekend on charges that the off-duty officer drunkenly crashed into two different vehicles, then drove away.

Green, 30, was arrested early Saturday on charges of driving under the influence/crash, DUI involving property damage and two counts of leaving the scene of a crash involving property damage.

Both incidents took place on Fourth Street N about 10 p.m. Friday, according to St. Petersburg police.

The first crash took place as Green attempted to pass a vehicle near the 3500 block of Fourth Street.

Both vehicles were headed north. Green drove over the raised concrete median while passing a 2009 Honda sedan, police said, and struck the driver's side mirror of that vehicle.

The Honda's driver was not injured, but police said the officer didn't stop after the collision.

Instead, Green continued north on Fourth. Police said Green's vehicle struck another vehicle at 38th Avenue N and Fourth Street. Police said no one was injured in that crash, but that Green kept going.

After the incidents, officers searched the area and found Green's damaged vehicle parked outside his Shore Acres home.

Green, who was off duty, was still inside the vehicle, according to police. His blood-alcohol level tested at 0.179 and 0.173. Florida law presumes a driver is impaired at 0.08 or greater.

He was arrested and booked into the Pinellas County jail about 3:30 a.m. Saturday. He could not be reached for comment Monday.

Green, a graduate of Lakewood High School and the University of South Florida, has been a patrol officer since November 2005. His personnel file shows nothing but positive reviews.

His file also showed that he has never been disciplined by the department. Green was involved in three crashes while driving his police cruiser, according to records, but only one incident was declared "preventable." He received a warning for that incident.

According to police, he was placed on administrative duty pending an internal investigation. After the investigation, a chain-of-command board will determine any disciplinary action.

Officer Jason East Arrested for Drunk Driving

A Forest Hill police officer accused of driving while intoxicated early Sunday in Johnson County has been placed on administrative leave pending an internal investigation, city officials said.

Officer Jason East was arrested by the Texas Department of Public Safety about midnight Sunday. He was released from the Johnson County Jail later that morning, according to a statement issued Monday by the city.

East has been with the department since 2000, a city spokeswoman said.

Officer Rhashim Campbell Accused of Using Excessive Force Faces Judge

A Hartford police officer, accused of using excessive force against a suspect, faced a judge Tuesday morning.

Rhashim Campbell's attorney, Salvatore Bonanno, wants to preserve any recordings involving his client.

Bonanno said, "I'm a little bit in the dark because I don't know what the video shows yet. I'm certain I'll have an opportunity to review that once I have my own copy."

Campbell is accused, along with now-retired Officer Kent Lee, of assaulting 41-year-old Michael Stewart of Long Island N.Y., in the early-morning hours after Halloween.

Campbell, not Lee, was arrested on charges including assault and fabricating physical evidence, a felony.

In the police report Campbell filed on the incident, he said Stewart struck him in the head, bit his finger, and Lee had to wrestle Stewart to a bench.

Campbell has been suspended without pay pending the outcome of the case. He is due back in court on Feb. 2.

Corporal Meredith Hanley Arrested for Attacking her Husband

A South Bend police officer accused of attacking her husband was in court Tuesday. Corporal Meredith Hanley was arrested over the weekend. She is accused in a domestic violence attack on her husband. Her husband is also a South Bend police officer, but he was not arrested in the incident.

A special prosecutor from LaPorte County has been appointed to handle the case to avoid any conflict of interest.

Hanley will be back in court January 12th.

Officer Vernon Wolford Charged with Sexual Battery on Woman Prisoner

A police officer has been charged with a felony after he was accused of sexually assaulting a prisoner in handcuffs.

Officer Vernon Wolford was charged with sexual battery, after investigators said he offered a woman freedom in exchange for sex.

A woman was arrested, handcuffed, and put in an Obetz police cruiser on Nov. 10, and then driven to a private drive off Groveport Road.

A search warrant revealed investigators believe Wolford stopped the cruiser, walked around the car, and asked the female prisoner "You want to go home?"

Investigators said the woman asked to be un-handcuffed but the officer refused - and that is when they said she performed a sex act on the officer.

The warrant revealed that investigators found DNA evidence on the prisoner's tennis shoes, Kocot reported.

Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien said by law a prisoner cannot give consent to have sex with an arresting officer.

"Some instances, such as statutory rape, teachers have sex with students it may be so called consensual - again, that's all sexual battery because of the nature of the relationship," O'Brien said.

Prosecutors said Wolford did not take the prisoner home, but instead he took her to the Franklin County Jail, where the woman told her story to deputies.

Wolford has been working as a full time officer for a year. He was placed on administrative leave during the investigation.

The charge of sexual battery is punishable by up to five years in prison.

Wolford is scheduled to be in court in January for a plea hearing.