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two stories

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Cop accused of lying to FBI gets sweet retirement deal

Sgt. Ray Henderlong was suspended last March and has been out on an undisclosed disability since then.

PEEKSKILL – A Peekskill police sergeant suspended a year ago when he was accused of lying to FBI agents and the chief and of failing to monitor sex offenders continues to receive full pay and will be granted a disability retirement under a settlement that's been criticized by Mayor Frank Catalina.

Sgt. Ray Henderlong was suspended last March and has been out on an undisclosed disability since then. He will receive his full $121,000 salary until the Aug. 25 retirement date agreed on with the city as part of a settlement that also drops all departmental charges against him.

That settlement, approved by City Manager Anthony Ruggiero, "did not come to the mayor or the (Common) council until it was a done deal, and I was very, very unhappy about it," Catalina said, adding that Ruggiero should not have paid lawyers who negotiated the agreement without consulting the council.

"I don't know if the settlement was justified," Catalina said. "What are the facts?"

A March 3, 2014, memo obtained by The Journal News informs Henderlong that he is suspended and lists numerous departmental charges of misconduct and incompetence.

The 55-year-old patrol sergeant and former department spokesman is accused of ordering another officer to stop a garbage truck on Jan. 11, 2013, "without a legitimate reason" five days before the FBI rounded up 30 people in the New York metro area on racketeering and extortion charges as part of an investigation into organized crime's influence on the trash hauling industry.

Three days after that stop, Henderlong was questioned by the FBI about it and was allegedly "untruthful," to both federal agents and Peekskill Police Chief Eric Johansen, saying that he ordered the stop based on a tip from a lawyer in court. The disciplinary charges say he ordered the stop at the behest of a contractor, but does not say why.

Johansen would not say why the traffic stop attracted the FBI's attention. A New York City FBI spokesman also would not comment or discuss whether Henderlong was "untruthful." No criminal charges were ever brought against the 18-year police veteran.

Henderlong, who in 2012 made a bid to become chief, denied the allegations, saying he was "fully cooperative" with the FBI and did not lie.

He also denied other accusations listed in his suspension notice. Those charges include failing to inform the chief about a criminal investigation in which the victim was a city councilwoman; directing Peekskill detectives not to tell the chief about that and other investigations; and ignoring orders to monitor sex offenders living in the city.

The 12-page settlement, obtained through a Freedom of Information request, bars Henderlong, Ruggiero, Johansen and other officials from making derogatory comments about any of the parties, and anyone who does can be fined $10,000. It also prevents Henderlong from applying for other jobs with the city or suing the city.

Lance Klein, whose law firm was paid $4,600 by the city to negotiate the settlement, said the city manager is not required to inform the mayor or Common Council of the agreement. He said the city charter gives the manager the power to hire and fire employees.

Ruggiero, the city manager, resigned his $163,000 post in February


NC Police Reform Bill Would Permit Civilian Review Boards That Could Subpoena, Fire Police Officers
Toothless local boards inspire a stronger proposal. The bill also includes a prohibition on profiling and a new training commission.

Mar. 27, 2015 1:35 pm

DurhamDurhamNorth Carolina state Rep. Rodney Moore (D-Mecklenburg) introduced a bill in the state legislature this month, House Bill 193, the "Prohibit Discriminatory Profiling" Act (pdf), that prohibits police profiling based on a perceived identity rather than behavior, requires the collection by the state of police deadly use of force data, a new training commission, and allows local municipalities to set up civilian review board with subpoena powers and the ability to fire police officers, with an appeals process, naturally.

The bill was inspired by the toothless citizen review boards across North Carolina (and the country), as Indy Week reports:

None of those things is legal in Durham. Rather than investigate the complaints themselves, the nine-member Durham review board's job is to ensure that the police department's internal-affairs investigations are adequate.

Supporters of the system believe the process properly leaves investigations to trained detectives; critics have long argued that the review board is little more than a rubber stamp. Indeed, says board chairman DeWarren Langley, since he began serving in 2009, there's never been an instance when the board sided with the complainants over the cops.

Last year, after a series of officer-involved shootings, allegations of racial profiling and disproportionate traffic stops against minorities in Durham, the city's Human Relations Committee made a recommendation to City Council for the citizen review board to begin directly investigating complaints against officers. In August, City Manager Tom Bonfield rejected that recommendation, arguing that review board members—whom he appoints—lack necessary investigative backgrounds.

Thanks in large part to lobbying by the parent of a police shooting victim, Wisconsin recently passed a law requiring state-level investigations of deadly use of force incidents. In the first test case, involving a Milwaukee police officer already fired for the fatal shooting, the cop was cleared by a team comprised of several former Milwaukee police officials, including the team chief. Gov. Scott Walker (R), a potential presidential hopeful, said he wasn't sure if the right decision was made but wasn't getting involved.. A second test case involving an unarmed victim is already going through the system.

The North Carolina bill, meanwhile, has a long way to go before it becomes law. The bill has 23 sponsors, all Democrats, and is still sitting in the judiciary committee. Both houses of the North Carolina legislature are controlled by Republicans. Other bills related to the police in the legislature include a bill to limit the number of law enforcement appointments an official can hold to three
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After reading this Washington "FBI Propaganda " Post Machine
I felt I could now trust the taxpayer funded Death Squad
called the FBI.

How about you?

wink,nod, know what I mean?


National Security
How the FBI director figures out who belongs in the most important jobs
March 29 at 7:27 PM

As FBI Director James B. Comey focuses the country’s premier law enforcement agency on terrorism and cyberthreats, he is leaning heavily on a little-known corporate tool to deal with a critical part of getting the job done: climate surveys.

Comey is using the surveys to help determine who should be running the most important jobs at the bureau. And in the process, he says, he wants to create a leadership factory.

In an e-mail last year, Comey let all of the bureau’s nearly 35,000 employees know just how seriously he takes the results. “For those leaders whose surveys are covered in red, we need to quickly find a path to improvement, or we need to get them out of the role,” he wrote.

The anonymous responses offer a snapshot of the FBI’s many field offices, pinpointing poor morale, potentially lousy managers and how well the bureau has collaborated with other federal agencies in the wake of Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Some of the problems identified occur in any large organization: gripes about pay, cronyism and bad bosses. “I also see the occasional mean comment (even about your beloved Director,” Comey wrote in an e-mail last year. “Ignore the mean people; I do.”)

But the responses also offer a window into how those working at the FBI think the bureau is performing, including in areas such as intelligence sharing and respecting the Constitution.

The Washington Post obtained the 2014 results for all 56 field offices after filing a Freedom of Information Act request.

Comey has made leadership changes at offices with some of the lowest average scores, including in Seattle, Norfolk and Springfield, Ill. Larger offices such as New York and Washington have not been spared, with Comey replacing senior agents in divisions that scored poorly.

Climate surveys were developed by industrial organizational psychologists, who study the workplace. The FBI began using its own version in 2007 to identify emerging problems and what was going smoothly.

Comey calls the surveys “smoke detectors.”
Keep Reading vv

For those who worry about being too honest, he had this reassurance in an e-mail to the workforce: “Let me say it as clearly as I can: responses to the survey are confidential.”

The surveys consist of dozens of questions that touch on integrity, fairness, pay and benefits — among other topics — that offer a “rich source of information about our leadership and our people,” Comey said in an e-mail.

The survey’s answers are given on a scale of 1 to 5 and divided into four categories of green, light green, yellow and red.

Nearly 75 percent of the 2014 survey’s responses were green or light green, a sign that the FBI’s field offices are generally in good shape. Yellow means there are potential problems that could worsen. Red signals significant problems, and about 10 percent of last year’s survey questions scored red.

“Red is dead,” as current and former FBI officials like to say.

Among the questions that received red responses in many field offices were those that dealt with raises, lazy coworkers, promotions, counterproductive work behavior and favoritism, with FBI employees saying that it was “difficult to recover from a mistake” and that “it takes more effort than necessary to get stuff done around here.”

Amy Grubb, an industrial psychologist at the FBI who helps interpret the surveys, said that the latter response was understandable.

“They get a little frustrated with the bureaucracy around here,” she said. “There are a lot of things we have to do because of the nature of the job. We have t’s to cross and i’s to dot to protect civil liberties.”

Still, the surveys strongly indicated that employees were proud of working for the FBI and believed in its mission. They also thought that Americans, for the most part, had a “positive view of the FBI.”

Employees also had a “high level of respect” for Comey and his top executives, an indication, perhaps, that his management style is resonating with the workforce, Grubb said.

Another response that scored very high: “Following the law is just as important as accomplishing the mission.”

In interviews, current and former FBI agents had mixed views of the surveys. Some worried the results would be used to settle scores and wondered whether they could accurately
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Here is the legislation just filed to create civilian review police board with subpoena powers in North Carolina.

3 stories



see link for video and full story

How a traffic stop left a Michigan man beaten, bloodied and bitter at police

A video with echoes of the Rodney King beating shows Floyd Dent pinned to the ground and punched 16 times by an officer with a history of citizen complaints

Video from a patrol car shows Floyd Dent being beaten by Inkster police officer
Monday 30 March 2015 10.14 EDT Last modified on Monday 30 March 2015 10.52 EDT

Floyd Dent never felt pain like he did the night of 28 January.

At about 10pm, the Detroit native says he went to visit a blind friend in the neighboring city of Inkster, to deliver a bottle of Rémy Martin and a 40oz of Bud Ice. He stayed for a few minutes, then left to drive home.

Moments later, a police cruiser behind him flipped on its overhead lights. According to a police report on the incident, Dent, 57, had failed to use a traffic signal and disregarded a stop sign. He continued to drive at roughly the same speed for about three-quarters of a mile, to a well-lit area where he says he felt comfortable. There, near an old police station, he pulled to the side of the road.

The police say Dent was driving with a suspended license. According to the office of Dent’s attorney, Greg Rohl, his driving record indicates the suspension was related to an unpaid driving ticket from several years ago.

Dent opened his door and put both his hands out of the window.

“I wanted to let them know I’m unarmed,” he told the Guardian.

But officer William Melendez – believing Dent was reaching for a gun – approached with firearm drawn. What happened next was captured on a patrol car camera.
The uncounted: why the US can't keep track of people killed by police
Read more

No audio of the incident exists. According to Dent, one of the officers told him to “get out the car, before I blow your fucking head off”.

Dent opened his door and was dragged out of his Cadillac; almost immediately, Melendez put him in a chokehold. Melendez then proceeded to deliver 16 blows to Dent’s temple. This all took place in about 15 seconds. Another officer arrived moments later and proceeded to use a taser stun gun against Dent, three times. In the video, Dent, with blood dripping from his forehead and cheek, appears not to be resisting Melendez’s efforts to arrest him.

In the police report, Melendez contended that as he had approached Dent’s open car door, the 37-year veteran Ford employee, who had no criminal history, looked at him “with a blank stare as if on a form of narcotic” and plainly stated: “I’ll kill you.”

Dent says Melendez choked him so tightly he couldn’t breathe.

“At one point, I just gave up,” he said in an interview on Sunday at his attorney’s office. “I thought that was it for me.”

At a later hearing, Melendez testified that even before any traffic violation occurred, he planned to investigate Dent simply because he had stopped to visit someone in a part of Inkster known for problems with drugs.

Melendez, 46, claimed Dent was immediately combative and bit his forearm, though he would later testify there were no marks because he was wearing several layers of clothing. Dent denies the accusation. Melendez said the bite was enough reason to begin repeatedly punching Dent.

“I was afraid that I might contract something,” Melendez testified, earlier this month. “I needed to assure that Mr Dent would not do that again.”

For that, Dent says he spent two days in hospital for a fractured left orbital, blood on the brain and four broken ribs.
‘Not all cops are bad, just the ones I ran into’
Floyd Dent, Greg Rohl Floyd Dent stands with his attorney, Greg Rohl, as they address the media. Photograph: Jessica J Trevino/AP

Inkster, with a population of about 25,000, is 73% black. Melendez is Hispanic; the other eight officers who arrived to the scene on 28 January were white.

While Dent was sitting in the back seat of a cruiser, police say they found a small bag of cocaine underneath the passenger seat of his vehicle.

Dent, whose post-arrest drug test came up negative, says police planted that evidence. Rohl, Dent’s attorney, contends that a close review of a video released this week shows Melendez pulling a bag of drugs from his pocket.

“I saw [an officer] with drugs in his hand, and I thought, ‘Look at them dirty dogs,’” Dent said. “After that I just held my head down.”

Dent has two children, including a 30-year-old son who says he is now unsure if he wants to pursue his dream of being a Michigan state trooper.

“He told me, ‘If cops are like this, I don’t wanna be a state police officer’,” Dent said. “I told him not all cops are bad, just the ones I ran into.”

Hilton Napoleon, a former Inkster police chief, said the allegations levied by Dent came as no surprise.

Citizens told him during his three-year tenure that officers planted evidence at a crime scene, he said.

“I tried to get them to come forward and make an official complaint … but they’re scared,” said Napoleon, who resigned in 2014. “And rightfully so.”

Police departments across the US have “bad apples”, Napoleon said, but officers often fail to report their actions.

“People are up in arms, everywhere,” Napoleon, who is black, told the Guardian. “And they’re looking at the police with a jaundiced eye now.”

According to local activists, the incident involving Dent is just one among a number that have pointed to a larger problem of police brutality nationwide. Following the deaths last year of two unarmed African Americans, Eric Garner in New York and Michael Brown in Missouri, protests have spread across the US.

In the wake of the video showing Dent’s beating, demonstrations took place in Inkster – where the police force is estimated to be 80% to 90% white.

Bishop Walter Starghill, president of the Western Wayne office of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), said he immediately met officials in Inkster, seeking ways to engage the community and let residents know the incident involving Dent would not be “swept under a rug”.

“I was shocked,” Starghill told the Guardian, when asked what he thought of the video. “It wasn’t a pretty sight; it brought a lot of concern to see somebody to be actually treated that way.”

Starghill compared the clip to the infamous beating of Rodney King by Los Angeles police in 1991, saying it afforded the public an opportunity to witness what took place. King’s beating, captured on camera, sparked serious riots.

“We realize there’s two different kinds of justice,” Starghill said. “There’s American justice and then there’s black justice. And America says that you are innocent until proven guilty; in black America we feel we are guilty until we are proven innocent.”

Inkster’s police chief, Vicki Yost, who is white and did not respond to multiple requests for comment from the Guardian, told other media outlets Melendez had been taken off street patrol. A criminal investigation by Michigan state police is under way, with no timeline for completion, said spokeswoman Shannon Banner.

“The investigation will include a review of all video evidence and interviews,” Banner told the Guardian. Its report will be forwarded to the county prosecutor’s office for review, she said.

The only person who has been prosecuted since the incident is Dent.

Initially, he faced charges of assault, resisting arrest and possession of cocaine. Upon viewing the patrol car video at a preliminary hearing earlier this month, a district court judge tossed out nearly all the charges. A court date on the drug charge is scheduled for Wednesday.

Regardless of this, said Rohl, the kind of treatment Dent received is unacceptable.

“I don’t care if he’s got a kilo of cocaine and two dead bodies in that car, I don’t give a shit,” he said. “It’s never appropriate ever to see that kind of brutality visited upon someone being arrested.”

In the case of Inkster, the question of a financial settlement with Dent comes at a difficult time for the city. Since 2012, Inkster has been under a consent agreement with the state of Michigan to address its dire financial problems. During Napoleon’s short stint as police chief, the number of officers in the department dropped from 73 to 24.

“You have a city that can barely keep its doors open, and now they’re gonna have to come up with a bunch of money and throw it on the backs of taxpayers,” he said.
Floyd Dent beating video A frame from a dashcam video provided by the Inkster police department shows an officer punching Floyd Dent many times in the head while another officer tries to handcuff him.
Melendez’s record shows he has faced similar allegations before. At one point, he garnered more citizen complaints than any officer in Detroit, where he started his career in 1993 and served until his resignation in 2009. He entered Inkster’s police force a year later.

Over nearly two decades, Melendez has been named as a defendant in a dozen federal lawsuits, accused of planting evidence, wrongfully killing unarmed civilians, falsifying police reports and conducting illegal arrests. Some suits were settled out of court. Others were dismissed.

In 1996, Melendez, who was known in Detroit as “RoboCop”, and his partner shot and killed Lou Adkins. While Adkins was on the ground, several witnesses said the officers shot him 11 times, according to the Detroit Free Press. The case was settled for $1.05m, court records show.

Later, in 2002, Melendez and a group of officers arrested Detroit resident Darrell Chancellor, a convicted felon, for possession of a firearm. Chancellor testified that he was sitting in a car with a group of friends when Melendez drove by with his partner. Chancellor and his friends exited the vehicle quickly “because it was RoboCop”, Chancellor testified.

Accounts of the incident between Chancellor and Melendez vary wildly. The officer claimed Chancellor threw a gun; Chancellor denied he had one. About 15 minutes later, according to Chancellor’s testimony, Melendez put a gun on top of the vehicle and said: “Chancellor, this is your gun.” Chancellor denied the accusation.

While Chancellor was being transferred to the police precinct, an argument broke out. Melendez, Chancellor said, told him to “shut the F up” or he would also plant drugs on him.

Chancellor spent 213 days in jail. When federal prosecutors reviewed the case, the firearm possession charge against him was dismissed.

The US prosecutor’s office examined Chancellor’s case as part of an investigation into allegations against Melendez, who was cited as the ringleader of numerous officers indicted by a federal grand jury in 2003 on civil rights violations. The officers were acquitted in 2004; jurors who spoke with the Detroit News explained they didn’t believe the government’s witnesses, many of whom had criminal records.

Around the time Chancellor’s case was concluded, in 2007, the city of Detroit settled another suit involving Melendez for $50,000. The lawsuit alleged Melendez and his partners knocked on Ernest Crutchfield III’s door in November 2003. When they received no response, they entered the premises without a search warrant and, in the kitchen, shot Crutchfield dead. According to the case, the officers planted a gun near his body before falsifying statements and lying under oath.

Between 1987 and 2004, more than 3,400 Detroit officers were named as defendants in a lawsuit, according to a 2005 city report on police settlements. By that time, court records indicate, Melendez had been sued nine times. Only 26 officers in Detroit had been involved in as many cases, the report stated.

Melendez, who could not be reached for comment, is currently named as a defendant in one case related to conduct in Inkster. In July 2011, he is alleged to have assaulted Deshawn Acklin, choking him until he lost consciousness. Acklin was using the bathroom at a friend’s house when Melendez and other officers arrived, on suspicion of an alleged shooter being inside.

Melendez – who would later contend Acklin resisted arrest – is alleged to have beaten Acklin until another officer said “that’s enough”. While being treated in hospital, Acklin testified that Melendez asked him how he liked his “wrestling moves” while he was choked. Melendez denies ever saying that.

Eventually, a court filing stated, Acklin “succumbed to the pain and lack of oxygen and passed out while defecating on himself”.

After he was treated at a hospital for a closed head injury, a left foot sprain and bleeding from his eyes, Acklin spent three days in custody, according to the case. He was never charged with a crime.
‘People can have a collective voice’
Floyd Dent Protesters stand behind Dent as he speaks to the media.

Dent says the video of his incident is a painful reminder of treatment he never expected to receive.

“My hope with him having the courage to step forward is that people who have not been heard can come and have a collective voice,” said Rohl.

A demonstration is scheduled for Wednesday – the day Dent will be back in court on the drug charge – at 4.30pm, outside Inkster police headquarters. Protesters also plan to convene on 3 April at the spot where Dent was pulled over, and then march to Inkster police headquarters.

Dent is a spiritual man. “Sometimes I just wanna be by myself and think, ‘Why did this have to happen to me?’” he said.

“But then again, I thought, the man upstairs


2 former federal agents charged with stealing Bitcoin during Silk Road probe

Updated 1:30 PM ET, Mon March 30, 2015
Silk Road founder's parents speak out

Silk Road founder's parents speak out 04:00

Washington (CNN)The federal government became owners of one of the biggest troves of Bitcoin, thanks to seizing millions of dollars in the digital currency from criminals associated with the online black market Silk Road.

Two federal agents who led the probe allegedly decided they wanted some of the money for themselves, according to a new federal court documents.

The two now-former agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Secret Service are charged with wire fraud, money laundering and other offenses for allegedly stealing Bitcoin during the federal investigation of Silk Road, an underground illicit black market federal prosecutors shut down last year.

The charges in a criminal complaint filed in San Francisco federal court paints a picture of corrupt federal agents trying to enrich themselves as they tried to bring down one of the Internet's top cybercriminals.

The charges against the agents could end up causing complications for the government's case against Ross Ulbricht, also known as "Dread Pirate Roberts", the Silk Road founder. Ulbricht was found guilty last year of aiding drug trafficking with his site.​ He is awaiting sentencing. As a result of the case against Ulbricht and others, the federal government seized bitcoin that it said at the time was valued at over $33 million.

The agents are: Carl Force, 46 years old, of Baltimore, a special agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration, and Shaun Bridges, 32, of Laurel, Maryland, a special agent with the U.S. Secret Service.


Sent: Mon, Mar 30, 2015 1:10 PM EDT
Subject: Bill inquiry - HB 193 - Prohibit Discriminatory Profiling

Thank you for calling the Legislative Library. Here's the information I promised to send.
Bill history pages:
HB 193, currently in the House Judiciary I committee (Rep. Daughtry, Chair)
SB 613 (filed 3/26; not yet referred to committee)

Bill text (HTML):
HB 193
SB 613

You may sign up to receive committee notices and calendars if you'd like to track bill activity. http://www.ncleg.net/calendars/calendars.html#Subscribe

I hope this is helpful.

Cathy L. Martin
Legislative Librarian
North Carolina General Assembly
300 N. Salisbury Street
Raleigh, NC 27603
919.733.9390 (voice)
919.715.5460 (fax)

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love that word " rogue"
2 reads one from Serpico the cop


Prosecutors on Monday accused six Philadelphia narcotics officers on trial in a wide-ranging federal corruption case of "disrespecting their badge" by shaking down suspects, stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars, and lying about it on their police reports.

But that mild disparagement paled next to the invective defense lawyers unleashed in their opening statements to refer to their clients' accusers.

"Trashy," "disreputable," "greedy," "sociopathic," and even "odoriferous" were deployed to describe the government's 19 primary witnesses, many of them admitted drug dealers, who are expected to testify that they were targeted by the group.

"If you have 19 bags of trash," defense attorney Jack McMahon told jurors, "you don't have better trash. You just have a pile of trash."

With that exercise in insult, the racketeering conspiracy trial began Monday for Officers Thomas Liciardello, Brian Reynolds, Michael Spicer, Perry Betts, Linwood Norman, and John Speiser, former members of the Philadelphia Police Department's elite Narcotics Field Unit accused in what Police Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey has called "one of the worst cases of police corruption I have ever seen."

It also laid bare what will likely become the central question for the jury of six men and six women weighing the officers' fate: Whose testimony is more credible - a group of cops accused in kidnappings, extortions, brutal assaults, and drug dealing, or admitted criminals who say their pasts are no excuse for police to break the law?

Prosecutors allege that from 2006 to 2012, the officers, led by Liciardello, ran roughshod over the rights of drug suspects, stealing more than $400,000 in cash, drugs, and personal property while using extreme force and falsifying police records.

Targets who resisted, they said Monday, were dangled over balconies, threatened with the seizure of their homes, or held in dank hotel rooms for days.

Already, the allegations have prompted dozens of civil rights lawsuits against the officers and led local courts to toss about 450 of their former drug cases.

"Make no mistake about it," Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony Wzorek told jurors. "Taking money while armed and using your authority as a Philadelphia police officer is robbery even if it's illegal drug money."

Wzorek offered jurors a preview of testimony to come, including that of Rodolfo Blanco, a Northeast Philadelphia heroin dealer who accused Liciardello and others of stealing $12,000 from him in 2006 and holding him in an airport hotel room for days while they threatened his family.

Victor Rosario, Wzorek said, will testify that Liciardello and Reynolds took nearly $12,000 from him in 2010 as well as an iPod, jewelry, and a Rolex watch they found during a search of his house. Rosario later told agents when he ran into Reynolds in court, he was wearing the stolen watch.

The defense was quick to offer alternate versions Monday of each incident.

The Rolex Rosario spotted on Reynolds wrist had been purchased years before the man's arrest, said McMahon, Reynolds lawyer, adding that he has the paperwork to prove it.

Defense lawyers said Blanco agreed to cooperate with Liciardello's crew to set up drug dealers higher up the chain. They housed him, with the approval of the District Attorney's Office, in the hotel to protect him while he worked with investigators, McMahon said.

"They all went out and played pool and had beers together one night," he said. "Mr. Blanco was there voluntarily."

Overall, McMahon said, the FBI's eight-year investigation of the officers was plagued by similar sloppiness. He accused agents of failing to interview key witnesses including the officers' supervisors, who were present at many of the incidents that now make up the government's case.

Defense lawyers said Monday that they planned to call many of the department's top brass to testify on behalf of their clients. Many of the indicted officers are also expected to take the stand.

But the defense reserved its harshest words Monday for the star witness of the government's case: Jeffrey Walker, a 24-year police veteran and former member of the drug squad who agreed to testify against the others after being arrested in a 2013 sting operation.

FBI agents caught him planting nearly 28 grams of cocaine in the car of a South Philadelphia drug dealers and later stealing $15,000 and five pounds of marijuana from the man's house.

Records of Walker's interviews with the FBI, mentioned in court Monday, suggest he began giving up his colleagues almost from the moment of his arrest, and he has not stopped talking since.

At various points, he has implicated lawyers, more than a dozen fellow officers, and even two barmaids at the unit's favorite watering hole, the Post Office Café in Bridesburg, in illegal activity.

Defense lawyers various


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two stories




Retired Police Officer Arrested in Child Pornography Case
August 21, 1987

A retired San Diego police officer who taught recently at the Police Academy has been arrested on child pornography charges, authorities said Thursday.

Donald Lindsley, 52, was arrested Aug. 12 and booked into County Jail on four counts of using minors to produce obscene material, a felony that carries a maximum of eight years in prison, said Sgt. Ron Cottingham of the Sheriff Department's child abuse unit in Santee.

If convicted on all four counts, Lindsley, who has been released on his own recognizance, would face up to 32 years in prison.

Lindsley was arrested after authorities obtained a search warrant for his El Cajon home and found about 100 photos of two girls and Lindsley in various poses, Cottingham said.

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Cottingham said "a source" gave the San Diego Police Department child abuse unit photos of Lindsley posing with the two girls, who are between 6 and 9 years of age. Lindsley, who retired from the Police Department on Nov. 23, 1985, after nearly 20 years of service, was recognized by one of his former co-workers.

The San Diego Police Department turned the case over to the Sheriff's Department because the photos had apparently been taken outdoors in East County, Cottingham said. The terrain of the area indicated where the photos were taken, he said.

Cottingham said Lindsley owned "a substantial private collection. It doesn't appear that he was trading with anybody or selling. It was just for his own personal use."

Lindsley apparently had been taking the photos for about a year, Cottingham said. He added that there is no evidence that Lindsley molested the two girls, nor is there any indication that any other children were involved.

The girls will probably go through counseling to help them deal with their victimization, Cottingham said. "(Child pornographers) are very remarkable in spotting kids that will be vulnerable and enticing them into this," he said.

Lindsley has taught



County jail worker accused of distributing child porn

see link for full story

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

An employee at the San Diego County Jail was arrested there Tuesday on suspicion of distributing child pornography.
About 1,500 videos and tens of thousands of still images that appeared to be child pornography were found on 11 computers at Lee's home, he said.

Agents also learned that Lee previously had custody for 18 months of a 9-year-old boy in foster care, Foxworth said.

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Convicted of Killing Michael Jordan's Father in 1993 Wants New Trial

Man Convicted of Killing Michael Jordan's Father in 1993 Wants New Trial


Daniel Green, the man convicted in 1996 for the 1993 shooting of James Jordan, could be granted a new trial nearly 20 years after being put behind bars for life.

For two decades, the story behind the murder went like this: Michael Jordan's father was shot and killed inside his Lexus on July 23, 1993, and his body was later dumped in a swamp. It happened after James Jordan pulled over on the side of a North Carolina highway to take a nap while driving back from a wedding. During the nap, his car was run up on by two men.

According to testimony from Green's co-defendant, Larry Demery, the plan was to steal the Lexus and tie up Jordan, but Green went ahead and shot him. Demery received a lesser sentence in a plea deal to testify against Green, and is eligible for parole in 2016. The testimony from Demery, in addition to blood evidence found in the car that purportedly​ supported Demery's version of events, was key in getting Green locked up.

Green's lawyers contend that's not how Jordan's murder went down. Green has always maintained that he didn't pull the trigger, and based on a new investigation into the case, he may get another chance to prove his innocence. In 2010, a former FBI agent released a report on the crime lab that processed the blood evidence in Jordan's case. As it turns out, that lab mishandled 200 cases during a 16-year period, and Jordan's was one of them.

Jennifer Elwell, the lab analyst who worked on the Jordan case, allegedly gave false testimony during Green's trial. She had stated that the blood tests were "inconclusive," when in fact, other labs testing the same samples returned a "negative" result. Rather conveniently, the negative lab reports never made it to the trial. To add to the doubt, the blood evidence in question was mysteriously destroyed when Green appealed his verdict.
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A tale of two killings: what happened when Idaho police shot a dog and a pregnant woman in one day

Fourteen hours and 45 miles apart in rural Idaho, two stories began. A community campaign led to ‘justice for Arfee’ after a pet’s killing outside a coffee shop. But there is no justice yet for the family of Jeanetta Riley
craig jones and dog, shane and jeanetta riley
Craig Jones with his other dog Larry, and Shane and Jeanetta Riley. Photograph: Jed Conklin for the Guardian (Jone

Friday 3 April 2015 08.17 EDT Last modified on Friday 3 April 2015 20.10 EDT

Two fatal police shootings unfolded within 14 hours, both in lakeside towns in the same corner of north-west Idaho.

The first victim was Jeanetta Riley, a troubled 35-year-old pregnant woman, shot dead by police as she brandished a knife outside a hospital in the town of Sandpoint. Her death barely ruffled the tight-knit rural community, which mostly backed the officers, who were cleared of wrongdoing before the case was closed.

The second shooting, in nearby Coeur d’Alene, sparked uproar. There were rallies, protests, sinister threats against the officer responsible, and a viral campaign that spread well beyond the town and drew an apology from the mayor. The killing was ruled unjusti
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SEPTEMBER 06, 2015
George Perrot has spent 29 years in prison for a rape he always said
he did not commit. Until recently, it looked like he would die there.

Now, a single strand of hair stands between him and freedom. And that
slender manacle may just have been snapped by federal authorities.

Even if you believe he’s guilty — as Hampden County prosecutors say
they still do — there is plenty in Perrot’s case to trouble even the
hardest of hard-liners, to shake our trust in those who are supposed
to protect us.

Perrot was 17 in the fall of 1985. A series of horrendous attacks on
elderly women in Springfield had begun the previous year, and police
believed the crimes were connected. Some women were raped more than
once; on Nov. 30, one of them, aged 78, was raped for the third time
in 18 months.

Back then, Perrot was every parent’s nightmare, committing crimes and
using drugs. Early on the morning of Dec. 7, 1985, he was arrested for
breaking into a house in the 78-year-old’s (and his) neighborhood and
for snatching a purse at a nearby Denny’s. Because of the way he broke
into the house, investigators suspected he was also responsible for
all of the rapes.

View Story
FBI evidence often mishandled
A highly critical internal investigation discovered errors with nearly
half the pieces of evidence it reviewed.
Hair matches overstated in many cases

His attorneys say Perrot was incoherent and high during the
interrogation, which extended over 12 hours and was not recorded. The
minor had no parents or attorney present. At one point, Perrot began
to cry and asked for a gun so he could shoot himself. Prosecutors say
this suggested he knew he had been found out. Defense attorneys say it
showed he was exhausted and at the point where he would have agreed to

An hour later, prosecutors said, Perrot signed a confession saying he
had broken into the 78-year-old’s house on the night of the rape,
though he always denied the sexual assault. He has no recollection of
signing the confession, and says he wasn’t in the woman’s home.

There’s no getting around the fact that, without the falsely
incriminating power of that single hair, things would have gone very

Quote Icon
None of the three women attacked in those weeks, each of whom had been
raped before, picked Perrot out of a line-up (and tests on semen found
at the scene of another of the rapes excluded him). Defense attorneys
say the victims failed to pick him even though the line-up, which
included five easily-identifiable police officers, was highly
suggestive. None of the men in the line-up fit the description the
78-year-old had given. The woman had known Perrot, who lived on her
street, since he was small. She said her attacker was clean-shaven.
Perrot had a shaggy moustache and goatee.

George Perrot was tied to a rape by an FBI analysis of a strand of
hair, a method that has since been discredited.
George Perrot was tied to a rape by an FBI analysis of a strand of
hair, a method that has since been discredited.

“How can I say it was [Perrot]?” she said at trial. “This fellow [who
attacked me] didn’t have any beard. He didn’t have any mustache.”

A footprint left on an earlier rape victim’s door was not Perrot’s
size. A palm print found on the window of another rape victim’s house
he was initially accused of breaking into that night did not match
his. On the stand, the victim said somebody added a paragraph to her
statement after she signed it.

But the prosecution team said they had a strong link between Perrot
and the attack on the woman (he was charged only with that one rape),
something that proved he was in her bedroom that night. Though the
attack took place on the floor, investigators said they found
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EXCLUSIVE: James Blake, former tennis star, slammed to ground and handcuffed outside midtown hotel by white NYPD cops who mistook him for ID theft suspect
ay, September 9, 2015,
James Blake, seen here during his match against Marcel Granollers at the 2012 U.S. Open, calls the incident 'definitely scary and definitely crazy.'
James Blake, seen here during his match against Marcel Granollers at the 2012 U.S. Open, calls the incident 'definitely scary and definitely crazy.'
Former tennis great James Blake was slammed to the ground, handcuffed and detained by five plainclothes city cops Wednesday outside his midtown hotel before heading out to the U.S. Open, Blake told the Daily News.

The officers, who were all white, mistook Blake for a suspect in an identity theft ring
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Oakland demonstrators march against law-enforcement exercises


September 11, 2015

Regine Neptune, an organizer with Black Lives Matter, protests the Urban Shield convention, Friday, Sept. 11, 2015, at the intersection of 14th Street and Lakeside Drive in Oakland, Calif. The convention, which critics say increases the militarization of police, moved to a different venue after last year's event was the scene of large protests. Urban Shields presents training exercises to first responders. Neptune travelled from San Jose for the demonstration. Photo: Santiago Mejia, Special To The Chronicle
Photo: Santiago Mejia, Special To The Chronicle
Image 4 of 2513-year-old Maria Calvillo (left) hugs her school dean Sagnicthe Salazar as she cries during a demonstration against the Urban Shield convention, Friday, Sept. 11, 2015, at the intersection of 14th Street and Lakeside Drive in Oakland, Calif. The convention, which critics say increases the militarization of police, moved to a different venue after last year's event was the scene of large protests. Urban Shields presents training exercises to first responders. Calvillo attends Elmhurst Community Prep. Both are part of the Xicana Moratorium Coalition.
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Regine Neptune, an organizer with Black Lives Matter, protests the Urban Shield convention, Friday, Sept. 11, 2015, at the intersection of 14th Street and Lakeside Drive in Oakland, Calif. The convention, which critics say increases the militarization of police, moved to a different venue after last year's event was the scene of large protests. Urban Shields presents training exercises to first responders. Neptune travelled from San Jose for the demonstration.
Buy this photo
Dressed in fake police uniforms, banging drums and chanting antiviolence slogans, a diverse group of roughly 100 protesters took over an intersection near Lake Merritt in Oakland on Friday afternoon to demand an end to Urban Shield, a multiday law enforcement and first-responder training exercise taking place in the Bay Area over the weekend.

Among their demands, the protesters called for the funds spent on the exercise, which are provided by the federal government through the Bay Area Urban Areas Security Initiative, to be invested in programs that benefit their communities.

“What we’re talking about today is investing in things that keep us safe,” said Kamau Walton, 28, with Critical Resistance, a group that advocates against the prison industrial complex. “We don’t want Urban Shield. We want housing, we want jobs, and we want safe spaces for our young people.”

Now in its ninth year, the expo is billed as a series of comprehensive training events, which brings together dozens of local, national and international law enforcement organizations for a “full-scale regional preparedness exercise.”

Called the largest “tactical exercise” in the nation, participants in Urban Shield are thrust into lifelike scenarios.

Critics, however, see the event, which features a weapons expo, as a way for an already militarized police force to further use weapons and technology originally intended for war.

Omar Ali, with the Arab Resource & Organizing Center of San Francisco, said that many of the scenarios are based on threats of a terrorist attack, which is of particular concern to him as a man of Middle Eastern descent.

“A lot of their trainings are based on stereotypes centered around counterterrorism under the guise of emergency preparation,” he said. “If a disaster strikes, what you need is a good community response, not an overmilitarized police response.”

J.D. Nelson, a spokesman for the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, conceded that law enforcement had become more militarized but had been doing so out of necessity.

“It’s a sad state of affairs, but we don’t get to pick and choose the calls we go out on,” he said.

Buoyed by the success of last year’s protests, after which then-Mayor
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Former Chicago cop threatens investigators to rule Fox Lake officer’s death a suicide: police

Monday, September 14, 2015,


Police said retired Chicago cop Joseph A. Battaglia, 54, phoned in a threat to all officials investigating the death of Fox Lake police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz on Friday afternoon.
A retired Chicago cop phoned in threats to all investigators probing the death of Fox Lake police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, authorities said Sunday.

Joseph A. Battaglia, 54, called the Lake County Coroner’s Office on Friday afternoon and threatened officials with harm if they don’t rule Gliniewicz’s Sept. 1 death a suicide, according to the county sheriff’s office.

Deputies said Battaglia has called other law enforcement agencies and may have provided reporters covering the case with false tips as well.

Battaglia has “zero involvement” with the investigation, but he has phoned severa
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FBI's role in Tomah VA case under Senate scrutiny


September 16,2015
Jason Simcakoski died at the Tomah (Wisconsin) VA Medical Center on Aug. 30, more
A Senate committee has asked the FBI to explain why a veteran who died at the Tomah, Wisconsin, VA Medical Center contacted law enforcement before his accidental overdose death in August 2014.

Heather Simcakoski, the widow of Marine veteran Jason Sim
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Officers charged in South Bay inmate death texted of prior abuse

September 17, 2015 Updated: September 17, 2015 4:35pm
Rafael Rodriguez, left, Jereh Lubrin, center, and Matthew Farris, right, are the three Santa Clara County correctional officers accused of killing inmate Michael Tyree. Rafael Rodriguez, left, Jereh Lubrin, center, and Matthew Farris, right, are the three Santa Clara County correctional officers accused of killing inmate Michael Tyree.
Starkly contrasting pictures are emerging of the correctional officers charged with the beating death of a mentally ill Santa Clara County jail inmate last month, as lawyers from both sides filed motions over whether the three defendants should be eligible for bail.
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NYPD officer with blood alcohol level 5 times the legal limit charged with drunken driving: prosecutors

Updated: Saturday, September 19, 2015, 10:41 PM

NYPD Officer John Finley was charged with drunken driving after he crashed into a guardrail in Staten Island and officers found his blood alcohol level to be .430%, more than five times the legal limit, officials said.
It’s NYPD blew .43%.

A veteran NYPD highway cop found himself on the other side of the law after crashing his SUV and registering a blood alcohol content more than five times the legal limit of .08%, authorities said Saturday.

Police Officer John Finley, 45, along with the rest of the department, is tasked with putting the brakes on traffic accidents and drunken drivers as part of the city’s Vision Zero initiative.

But those lofty goals were chucked out his passenger-side window when his blood-alcohol level landed at a mind-boggling .43% during the Aug. 8 crash on Staten Island, stunned officials said.

“That means that nearly half the blood in his body had alcohol in it,” a law enforcement source with knowledge of the case said. “At
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FBI agent faces discipline for alleged polygraph countermeasures
The unnamed career FBI agent could lose their job for allegedly gaming the widely discredited, unscientific polygraph tests that are the US government's equivalent to witch-ducking stools.
Retired FBI scientist, supervisory special agent, and polygraph critic Dr. Drew Richardson published his (eye-wateringly detailed and especially damning) memo to the FBI in support of the agent:

6. In a general sense, no physiological lie response has ever been identified within the human body. Furthermore, I believe probable-lie control question test (PL-CQT) polygraphy, a group of polygraph exam formats widely known by the general public as the so-called “lie detector” test and which are commonly used in FBI polygraph examinations, have little to no value as a diagnostic instrument for determining truth and falsehood. I believe this to be the case for a variety of reasons, one overriding one to be subsequently discussed.

Previous surveys of the members of the Society for Psychophysiological Research and the Fellows of the American Psychological Association’s Division I (General Psychology) would indicate that my previously-stated general opinion regarding CQT polygraph testing is shared by a large majority of scientists with relevant scientific backgrounds. If, on average, the polygraph examinee is found to have greater responses to relevant questions, he is found to be deceptive, and is found to be non-deceptive, if again, on average, the responses are greater for control questions. These consequences could include (in a criminal matter) further investigation, prosecution, conviction, imprisonment, loss of family, friends, money, reputation, etc. In an administrative and/or screening setting, an inquiry subsequent to a false positive polygraph result might include loss or denial of employment, loss of income, reputation, and general embarrassment amongst many possible consequences and outcomes. Again this has absolutely nothing to do with lying, but with an innocent examinee being concerned about the consequences of being branded a liar; these consequences are those aforementioned and which are clearly associated with the relevant question issues and not the “stealing while in high school” type of control/comparison questions.

This is perfectly consistent with the autonomic nervous system (ANS) physiology being measured by a polygraph examiner and a variable that cannot be reasonably controlled for by that examiner. Peer-reviewed research published in the scientific literature has suggested that the false positive rate (falsely accusing an innocent examinee of being deceptive) could
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1.Bonus read


12 Deputies Arrested Since January, All From One Sheriff’s Office

Sheriff Susan L. Pamerleau
San Antonio – It’s becoming more and more common to see police officers being arrested for their criminal actions. However, one sheriff’s office seems to employ the ‘creme of the crop’ when it comes to inept, incompetent, and unqualified officers – the Bexar Sheriff’s Office.

Despite Sheriff Susan Pamerleau’s contention that she runs her office with ‘professionalism and excellence’, 12 of her deputies have been arrested since January of this year.

Instead of taking a tougher stance against her criminal cops, she simply brushed off the crimes of her deputies, saying the crimes committed by her deputies “are all crimes that plague the community”.

Here are the deputies that have been arrested this year, since January:

Detention Deputy David Ramos — arrested May 31 — Criminal Mischief misdemeanor
Detention Deputy Adrian Ambriz — arrested Aug. 4 — Tampering with Evidence
Detention Deputy Juan Medrano — arrested Aug. 6 — DWI
Detention Deputy Mark Hernandez — arrested Aug. 17 — DWI
Detention Deputy Billy Torres — arrested Jan. 9 — Burglary of a Building
Detention Deputy Erich Arredondo — arrested March 6 — Possession of marijuana
Detention Deputy Robert Serros — arrested May 23 — Assault with Bodily Injury-Family
Detention Deputy Mario Rios — arrested June 7 — DWI
Detention Deputy Joseph Barbier — arrested June 22 — Assault with Bodily Injury-Family
Detention Deputy Ronald Bailey — arrested June 25 — Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon indictment
Detention Deputy Termaine Elliott — arrested July 31 — Bribery, and Possession of a Controlled Substance in a Correctional Facility
Detention Deputy Omar Echeverria — arrested Sept. 10 — DWI
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Adultery, a Love Child and Claims of a Police Conspiracy Heat Up Princeton

Wednesday, September 23, 2015 |


Princeton sits in an ocean of cookie-cutter suburbs about 40 miles northeast of Dallas, at the edge of a gold coast of development washing away horse country. To the west is McKinney; to the east, Farmersville. In between, there's Princeton, where they love God, country and family and the divorce rate is well below the national average.

But sometimes, just one bad marriage is bad enough. In Princeton, that's the case with Dr. Glen David Hurlston and his ex-wife Suzanne Besse, the lead characters in a soap operatic story of alleged sexual obsession, violence, secret affairs and out-of-wedlock children. Toss in the accusation of murder solicitation, secret recordings, drug addiction and alleged police abuse, and Princeton, population 6,800, begins to look like General Hospital's Port Charles.

The center of the drama is the house on Sage Drive that Hurlston bought for his wife, Suzanne Besse, in July 2010, so she could be closer to her two older children from a previous marriage. Two years later, on New Year's night, it's where Princeton police handcuffed Hurlston and hauled him to jail, accused of beating his wife.

He says he doesn't remember beating Besse. He only remembers his daughter's eyes as officers led him away in handcuffs. "I saw little tears in her eyes," he says. "It was just like, 'I'm sorry ... I don't know what to say.' But I wanted to say, 'Hey, it's OK. Don't worry about it. The police aren't bad people,'" he recalls. "I didn't know they were bad people."

Hurlston would soon learn his wife was having an affair with Princeton's former police chief, Jeff Barnett, now the chief in Kyle, a town south of Austin. Besse had given birth to Barnett's son, whom Besse passed off as Hurlston's, Hurlston says.

The affair, Hurlston believes, is what led to his arrest and what he claims was continuing harassment by Princeton police. In a lawsuit pending in federal court in Sherman, Hurlston contends Besse and Barnett schemed to take the doctor's money, and he accuses Barnett, the cities of Princeton and Kyle, and Princeton police Lieutenant Robert Michnick of violating his civil rights. Hurlston claims Princeton police officers did not have probable cause to arrest him on a family violence charg
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Officials: Police Officer Arrested For Murdering 2-Month-Old Son


A Tennessee police officer was arrested for allegedly murdering his infant son, law enforcement officials said.

Christopher Warren Page, 28, an officer with the Paris Police Department, was arrested on Thursday and charged with first-degree murder and aggravated child abuse for the death of his two-month-old son, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

Baby Gunner Page suffered life-threatening injuries in his Puryear home on September 2, TBI officials said, noting TBI Special Agents
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Brandon Mayfield is a practicing lawyer.


The recent revelations about a forensic analyst at Oregon State Police’s crime lab in Bend likely tampering with evidence will have shocked many Oregonians. As many as 1,000 cases may now have to be reopened, causing added stress to victims and potentially revealing that innocent defendants have been wrongfully convicted.

Add to that the news that a second OSP analyst has been investigated in a separate incident for providing inflated testimony in court cases and a casual observer might well conclude that there is a need for a thorough examination of what exactly is going on inside the OSP forensics division.

These news stories came as no surprise to me, however. I know from personal experience that when it comes to forensic examination without proper safeguards, the opportunity for bias is virtually certain. Sometimes the bias in the examination is against the target and sometimes it is a refusal to admit that police departments and their labs make mistakes.

In March 2004, ignoring contrary findings from Spanish police, the FBI wrongly identified my fingerprints as matching a print discovered after the Madrid train bombing which killed nearly 200 people. The FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office had no evidence to link me to the bombing other than the print which Spanish police’s own tests had concluded was not a match to my fingerprints.

Instead of admitting their mistakes, the FBI continued to pursue me. I was arrested and held for more than two weeks without charge in connection to a case that I knew could see me eligible for the death penalty if convicted.

A 2006 review by the U.S. Department of Justice into what went wrong in my case found that the FBI overlooked “important differences” between my prints and those found in Spain and that “the FBI Laboratory’s overconfidence in the skill and superiority of its examiners prevented it from taking the [Spanish police report] as seriously as it should have.”

My case and the subsequent investigations also revealed a serious lack of standardization and blind review in fingerprint identification procedures.

The simplest and single most effective way of ensuring that bias and a desire to prosecute at any cost, regardless of the facts and evidence, does not taint forensic evidence and analysis is to make crime labs completely separate from police departments. This is common practice, for example, in many British police forces. In the U.S., most forensic work is done inside police departments despite recommendations from the National Academy of Sciences that this should end.

It is therefore high time we follow the example of a growing number of countries around the world and put up real walls between law enforcement and crime labs to ensure that bias and the desire to make a case against an individual regardless of the strength of the evidence against them is kept to a minimum.

Brandon Mayfield of Beaverton is a lawyer. He and his daughter, Sharia, a Georgetown law student, have written a detailed account of Brandon’s 2004 arrest and its implications in their book, “Improbable Cause.” Mayfield can be reached at mayfieldbrandon@hotmail.com.
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FBI and DEA under review for use of NSA mass surveillance data

Sep 29, 2015, 7:00am CT | Last updated Sep 29, 2015, 7:54am CT

The Justice Department is investigating the FBI’s use of information taken directly from mass surveillance conducted by the National Security Agency (NSA)’s collection of telephone metadata.

The yield of that NSA spying program was described by a judge as a “staggering” amount of data when the agency's ability to collect it was struck down as illegal in court earlier this year. The program was resumed in June and will run until at least December.

Another ongoing Justice Department investigation is examining the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)'s use of “parallel construction."

Parallel construction is a controversial investigative technique that takes information gained from sources like the NSA's mass surveillance, covers up or lies about the sources, and then utilizes them in criminal investigations inside the United States. The information was passed to other federal agencies like the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

The technique was described as “decades old, a bedrock concept” by a DEA official.

Critics at the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) described the technique as "intelligence laundering" designed to cover up "deception and dishonesty" that ran contrary to the original intent of post-9/11 surveillance laws.

Both the FBI and DEA, which operate under the jurisdiction of the Justice Department, are under review by the department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG). The details of the NSA’s mass metadata collection program were first publicly revealed in 2013 by contractor Edward Snowden. The DEA’s use of parallel construction was revealed by Reuters a few months later.

The OIG is charged with identifying and investigating fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement. Although OIG reports cannot on their own force change, detailed information is always shared with Congress and often the public which can lead to the investigated party agreeing to the suggested changes and conclusions from the OIG or other entities.

The NSA sent daily metadata reports to the FBI from at least 2006 to 2011, according to the director of national intelligence.

The ongoing review will examine how the FBI processed the NSA’s information, how much information was passed along, and the results of the initiated investigations.

The NSA’s mass collection of telephone metadata was thought to be authorized under Section 215 of the Patriot Act. Both the George W. Bush and Barack Obama administrations argued for and renewed authorization until the program expired in Congress earlier this year.

The Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General is also investigating the FBI’s use of Patroit Act Section 215 from 2012 to 2014 that allowed it to obtain “any tangible thing” from any business or entity as part of investigations against international terrorism or spying.

A previous investigation revealed that every single Section 215 application submitted by the FBI to the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA) was approved.

That amount data collected was a “staggering” amount of information, Judge Gerard E. Lynch wrote in his decision. “Such expansive development of government repositories of formerly private records would be an unprecedented contraction of the privacy expectations of all Americans.”
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Watch: US Justice System Hits Rock Bottom, Admits It Has Problem


Addiction specialists often say admitting a problem is the first step toward recovery. Well, VICE magazine, in conjunction with HBO, released on Monday for free an hour-long bombshell documentary that depicts the US criminal justice system hitting rock bottom, with both President Obama and former Attorney General Eric Holder saying the system is broken.

The president says it could be anyone’s family that can be shattered by this system, which Senator Cory Booker says is set up to “crush” low-income Americans. The criminal justice system is institutionally biased according to race, “particularly when you think about non-violent drug offenses,” Holder says. “It’s not normal.”

In related news, the FBI released new data yesterday showing US marijuana arrests rose to more than 700,000 in 2014. Almost 90 percent of those arrests were for simple possession. One person will be arrested for marijuana about every minute, which means while you read this, someone just got cuffed. Blacks are up to thirty times more likely as whites to be arrested for pot in the United States, despite similar usage rates.

As VICE documents, one out of every three black children born in the United States today will go to jail at least once in their lives. VICE features a former federal judge who says mandatory minimum sentencing laws enacted by Congress in the Eighties and Clinton in the Nineties are wildly unjust. Sex offenders and rapists get far less time than fathers and sons with non-violent drug offenses.

Folks are pleading guilty and serving fifteen years in federal prison rather than face potentially life for “ghost dope” — conspiracy charges based on hearsay evidence. Mandatory minimums are so terrifying, the federal system has a 97 percent guilty plea rate. It is prosecutors, not judges, who now decide time served.

America is also dealing with the generational consequences of fifty years of mass incarceration. The nation has families in which three generations of males have done time. There are 1.1 million fathers behind bars. There are more Black folks in state custody than there were slaves in 1850.

When convicts get out, they’re barred from getting a job, credit, food stamps, college loans, and housing. States are also releasing citizens with huge debts and re-arresting them when they can’t pay them. With no diploma and a record, it’s no wonder 50 percent reoffend within one year. It’s barbaric.

A bipartisan effort is underway in Congress to reform the entire system, due to both its immense fiscal and human costs. We’re spending $80 billion a year on “corrections” systems that do not c
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Loretta Lynch: government shouldn't require reports of people killed by police

The attorney general says local police are encouraged to maintain records on such killings, but improving police-community relations is more important

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L.A. police shoot a man to death after patrol car window shatters
Fatal shooting

Los Angeles police officers shot a man to death after the rear window of their police cruiser shattered while the officers were at a stoplight in Van Nuys, authorities said Sunday.

The two officers were in their patrol car at the intersection of Sepulveda and Victory boulevards about 11:30 p.m. Saturday when they "suddenly hear and saw their rear window shatter," said LAPD Officer Mike Lopez.

Both officers got out of their car and fired an unknown number of shots at a man, described as in his 30s, who was later pronounced dead at the scene.

The man's identity was not released pending notification of his family, and it's unclear if he was carrying a weapon.

LAPD investigators are working to determine what caused the window in the patrol car to shatter, Lopez said.

Neither of the officers was injured in the shooting.

The LAPD, the district attorney's office and the L.A. police commission's inspector general are investigating the incident, as is customary in officer-involved shootings that result in someone's death.
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This was the fourth fatal LAPD officer-involved shooting in the last two months. On Sept. 27, officers fatally shot a woman armed with a knife following a confrontation near downtown L.A.

LAPD officers have shot 32 people this year, 18 of whom wer
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Three Former East Cleveland Police Officers Charged with Fabricating Evidence, Stealing Cash

October 08, 2015        

Northern District of Ohio (216) 622-3600

Three former East Cleveland police officers were charged in federal court for their roles in a conspiracy in which they kept thousands of dollars from alleged drug dealers, much of which was seized through illegal searches and fabricated reports, said Steven M. Dettelbach, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.

Torris Moore was arrested this morning following the unsealing of a five count federal indictment, which charged Moore with one count each of conspiracy against rights, Hobbs Act conspiracy and false statements to law enforcement and two counts of theft concerning programs receiving federal funds.

At the same time, a criminal information was filed in U.S. District Court. Antonio Malone and Eric Jones were both charged with one count of conspiracy against rights and one count of Hobbs Act conspiracy.

“The three officers charged today—unlike the overwhelming majority of police officers—did not protect and serve, but rather pillaged and plundered,” Dettelbach said. “They viewed the drug trade as an opportunity to enrich themselves, and lied to the court, their fellow officers and the citizens of East Cleveland to pull off their criminal conspiracy.”

“These three officers acted like cunning criminals rather than honorable public servants that are sworn to protect and serve,” Anthony said. “They will be held accountable for their reprehensible conduct.”

Moore, 42, of South Euclid, was a sergeant at the East Cleveland Police Department, where he supervised the Street Crimes Unit. Malone, 33, of Cleveland, and Jones, 38, of Cleveland Heights, were detectives assigned to the Street Crimes Unit. The unit, including Moore, Malone and Jones, were familiar with several drug traffickers, according to the indictment.

The defendants, between 2012 through June 2014, conspired to unlawfully enter premises and exceed the scope of lawful entry, thereafter conducting unlawful searches and seizures, used their power to seize money and property for themselves under the
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