Careless FBI agents lost their guns in bathrooms, hotels and even a prison: IG
Only one agent was fired as a result; most were suspended for just three days
Helena FBI agent charged with stalking ex-girlfriend
Another Baltimore Cop Facing Criminal Charges, This Time For Stealing 3 Kilos Of Coke From A Drug Bust
from the know-thy-enemy-or-whatever dept
Mon, Mar 23rd 2020 1:49pm — Tim Cushing
cop arrested for stealing cattle
2 Chicago Cops Fired for Shooting at Unarmed Teen's Car. Cop Who Actually Killed Teen Keeps Job
The Chicago Police Board has dismissed two officers who riddled a car with bullets during a 2016 car chase that
Scots former cop jailed for 15 years after choking his wife to death at their home
Deep State: Concentration Camps for the Troublesome Poor
The governor has almost nothing in her new proposed budget that would change things
Tuesday, March 24
We can't let the coronavirus lead to a 9/11-style erosion of civil liberties
Samuel Miller McDonald, The Guardian
Trump says he may soon push businesses to reopen, defying the advice of coronavirus experts
Philip Rucker, Jeff Stein, Josh Dawsey & Ashley Parker, The Washington Post
In a pandemic, freedom is the first casualty
Edward Hasbrouck, The Identity Project
Privacy Advocates Are Sounding Alarms Over Coronavirus Surveillance
Benjamin Powers, Coin Desk
We Should Be Very Wary About the Growing Military Response to the Coronavirus Crisis
Sarah Lazare, In These Time
Colorado becomes 22nd state to abolish the death penalty
With Governor Jared Polis’s signature yesterday afternoon, Colorado became the 22nd U.S. state to abolish the death penalty and the tenth in the past decade-and-a-half.
Colorado’s action exemplifies the trend we are seeing in states across the country, which is a continuing movement away from capital punishment, first in practice, then in law. Half of U.S. states have either abolished the death penalty or have imposed moratoria on executions. Two thirds either no longer authorize capital punishment or have not executed anyone in more than a decade. New death sentences are down nearly 90% since the mid 1990s and executions have declined by 75% since the turn of the century. And more than 80% of U.S. counties have no one on death row and have not executed anyone in the past half century.
The trend away from the death penalty has been particularly strong in the West in recent years. Governors in Colorado, Washington, Oregon, and California have all halted executions. Washington and Colorado have gone on to judicially or legislatively abolish the death penalty and Oregon has significantly restricted its scope. No state west of Texas has carried out an execution in the past five years and fewer new death sentences were imposed in those states last year than in any year since California brought back its death penalty in the late 1970s.
That is not a surprise. Public support for capital punishment has been thinning and is near a generation low. America’s views of criminal justice have experienced a sea change and in state legislatures, the issue has become increasingly bipartisan. And as legislators have shifted from viewing the death penalty as an instrument of politics and have increasingly subjected it to the same type of scrutiny afforded other government programs, we have seen significant legislative movement towards abolition across the country.
Growing numbers of legislators have criticized the high cost of capital punishment, the inherent risk of convicting and executing the innocent, the continuing racial, geographic, and economic disparities in the way it is applied, and the untrustworthiness of states to carry it out fairly, consistently, or in a principled manner. As Governor Polis noted in his statement today, “the death penalty cannot be, and never has been, administered equitably in the State of Colorado.”
Colorado’s legislators engaged in heartfelt, respectful, and good-faith debate on very sensitive issues. In the end, they based their decision on the evidence and what each legislator individually believed in his or her heart was right for the people of the state. Governor Polis recognized that, as distasteful as the crimes were that resulted in the three remaining death sentences in the state, it was better to close out this chapter in Colorado’s criminal justice history than to let the issue fester while unnecessarily spending millions more of taxpayer dollars.
Manhunt underway in Washington after prison break allegedly sparked by coronavirus panic
By JESSICA SCHLADEBECK
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS |
MAR 24, 2020 | 9:27 AM
Hints of ancient ‘lost continent’ found in Baffin Island, Canada during diamond exploration
By THERESA BRAINE
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS |
MAR 23, 2020 | 6:29 PM
Rainer S. Drolshagen Named Special Agent in Charge of Minneapolis Field Office
Rainer Drolshagen, special agent in charge of the Minneapolis Field Office.
Rainer S. Drolshagen has been named special agent in charge of the Minneapolis Field Office.
Drolshagen, who recently served as a deputy assistant director in the Directorate of Intelligence at FBI headquarters, joined the bureau as a special agent in 1997. His first assignment was with the Johnson City Resident Agency under the Knoxville Field Office in Tennessee, where he investigated criminal and national security cases.
In the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Drolshagen led an evidence team investigating the crash of United Airlines Flight 93 in Pennsylvania.
In 2006, Drolshagen became supervisory special agent in the Military Liaison and Detainee Unit in the Counterterrorism Division at FBI headquarters. A year later, he was named
The Legend of United Flight 93
by Ted Rall
On the first anniversary of the crash of United Airlines Flight 93, Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge delivered a speech at the site of the disaster in western Pennsylvania. “Faced with the most frightening circumstances one could possibly imagine,” he told grieving relatives of the passengers and crewmembers aboard the fourth plane hijacked on 9/11, “they met the challenge like citizen soldiers, like Americans.” He recited the now-familiar story of passengers learning by phone about the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, deciding to fight back and breaking into the cockpit–a heroic act that led to their own deaths while sparing countless others in Washington.
“The terrorists were right to fear an uprising,” Ridge rhapsodized. “The passengers and crew did whatever they humanly could–boil water, phone the authorities, and ultimately rush the cockpit to foil the attack.”
Ridge’s boss repeatedly used United 93 to close his standard stump speech. Calling the passenger revolt “the most vivid and sad symbol of them all,” George W. Bush said: “People are flying across the country on an airplane, at least they thought they were. They learned the plane was going to be used as a weapon. They got on their telephones. They were told the true story. Many of them told their loved ones goodbye. They said they loved them. They said a prayer; a prayer was said. One guy said, ‘Let’s roll.’ They took the plane into the ground.”
The legend of Flight 93 had everything a nation caught with its pants down needed to feel better about itself: guts, heroism, self-sacrifice. Best of all, it was marketable–by Hollywood and by a president willing to surf on a kind of heroism notably absent from his own life. (Theatrical release of the second “United 93” movie is scheduled to open April 28.) Lisa Beamer, widow of the passenger credited with the call-to-arms “let’s roll,” wrote a bestselling book by the same name, applied for a trademark on the expression, and is now working the Christianist lecture circuit.
Actually, the 9/11 Commission found, the evidence indicates that what Todd Beamer (or someone else) said was not “let’s roll,” but “roll it”–possibly referring to an airplane service cart the passengers may have wanted to use to break down the door into the cockpit. Too bad-. “Roll it” sounds less cinematic, and more like a book about cinematography.
The first indication that government officials were covering up the truth about United 93 came with their refusal to make public the cockpit voice recording (CVR). Releasing CVRs after a crash has long been standard practice; pilots’ last, usually profane, utterances have become a cliche. Yet the FBI stonewalled victims’ relatives for months after 9/11.
“While we empathize with the grieving families,” assistant director John Collingwood wrote one widow, “we do not believe that the horror captured on the cockpit voice recording will console them in any way.” And yet, if the tape contained inspiring proof of the passenger revolt and its success, it would have been one hell of a lot more consoling than Tom Ridge’s oratory. Why not release it?
Finally, after seven months of political pressure, the FBI allowed United 93 relatives to listen to the CVR. The feds told the families not to reveal what they’d heard. “They said the information on the tapes could be possibly used in the prosecution of [alleged “20th hijacker” Zacarias] Moussaoui, and anything that we say could affect the case in a negative way,” said the brother of one of the victims.
Though they studied the recording, the 9/11 Commission found zero evidence that the passenger revolt succeeded, that they made it into the cockpit and, as Bush claimed, “took the plane into the ground.” Tom Kean & Co. offered only conjecture: “The hijackers remained at the controls but must have judged that the passengers were only seconds from overcoming them.”
“Must have.” At a time when war can be justified by waving around a bottle of fake anthrax on TV, “must have” is judged adequate proof.
Another eyebrow-raising portion of the official account of Flight 93 states that “the passengers and flight crew began a series of calls from GTE airphones and cellular phones” after the hijacking. Ever forgotten to turn off your cellphone during a flight? I have. Try it yourself: Cellular telephone calls tend to drop when you’re driving at 60 miles per hour; passenger jets travel up to ten times that speed. Moreover, there’s zero signal, and thus no ability to place a call, above 8,000 feet. Flight 93, en route from Newark to San Francisco at a cruising altitude of 35,000 feet, dropped 700 feet when it was hijacked at 9:28 am. Cell calls? Not likely.
The Bush Administration has alternately claimed that the White House, then the Capitol, and finally the White House again was the target of the Flight 93 hijackers. Sure,
Flight 93 Families Bash FBI Theory
Putin dons hazmat suit to visit hospital treating coronavirus patients in Moscow (VIDEO)
24 Mar, 2020 13:19 / Updated 2 hours ago
Gun stores must close amid coronavirus restrictions, L.A. County sheriff says
Many SF animal shelters have shut down due to coronavirus. They need your help.
By Madeline Wells, SFGATE Updated 10:50 am PDT, Tuesday, March 24, 2020
Cop convicted of raping stepdaughter uses coronavirus crisis in bid to seek release
By Joshua Rhett Miller
March 24, 2020 | 2:41pm | Updated
Bronx gun suspects allowed to withdraw felony pleas after NYPD cop admits evidence was tampered with
By ROCCO PARASCANDOLA
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS |
MAR 24, 2020 | 6:00 AM
Federal Court Blasts Lying Cop Using His Warrantless Search Of A Room To Fraudulently Obtain A Search Warrant
from the I-didn't-have-probable-cause-for-a-search-until-after-I-searched dept
Mon, Mar 23rd 2020 7:35pm — Tim Cushing
It's not often you see a court actually call a police officer a liar, but it happened in this case [PDF], via FourthAmendment.com. While investigating a murder
Man files intent to sue Riviera Beach, claiming cop sicced K-9 on suspect after surrender