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Posted: July 29, 2015 - 2:40am - Updated: July 31, - 10:45 am PDT
Medford, Massachusetts -- Michael, a Massachusetts man, was driving in the town of Medford last Saturday night. He took a wrong turn and ended up going the wrong way down a traffic circle. In dashcam video posted to YouTube by Michael, he is confronted by off-duty Medford Detective Stephen LeBert. Lebert is dressed in a white tank top and shorts. LeBert, visibly angry, steps out of a truck and approaches Michael. Michael, seemingly (and perhaps understandably) frightened, puts his vehicle in reverse. LeBert follows Michael and he stops. Michael told media sources: "I thought that guy was going to kill me."
LeBert appears to show his badge and identifies himself as a police officer. LeBert greet Michael by saying, "I'll put a hole in your head." Michael is apologetic and explains to the officer that he is being recorded. LeBert suggests that he will seize the camera. "I'm a fucking Medford detective and you went through that fucking rotary," says LeBert. Michael insists he didn't see a sign. LeBert demands his driver's license. Shortly after calling the driver an "'asshole'," LeBert states: "You're lucky I'm a cop, otherwise I'd be beating the fucking piss out of you right now." LeBert ultimately calls for on-duty cops.
In the days before cameras proliferated, you had to rely on witnesses and hearsay. The police were more likely to be believed by those in authority. Cameras have begun to change that on both sides. Michael posted his video to YouTube. The video has led to an investigation. Medford Police Chief Leo Sacco told media sources: "It's not the proper behavior, but we only know about it when people tell us. And unfortunately, we had to get up this morning and see it on a YouTube video." Sacco also told the media: "The video is troubling enough, and it requires investigation just based on what we see here. The driver does not have to file his own complaint. He may, but he does not have to."
Sacco was asked how long the investigation might take and when will updates be available. Sacco told the media that LeBert was a good policeman. He added, perhaps unfortunately: "If you work hard you do step on people's toes, which generates complaints." This doesn't appear to be stepping on toes.
Posted November 21, 2013 - 2:40am - Updated November 22, 2013 - 12:15 am PST
Danvers, Massachusetts -- Phillip Chism, 14, a Massachusetts teenager charged with the murder of a popular high school math teacher, sexually assaulted the woman in what a prosecutor described as a series of "unspeakable acts." Chism was arrested last month and charged with the murder of Colleen Ritzer, 24, his teacher at Danvers High School. Ritzer's body was found on Oct. 23 in a wooded area roughly 50 feet from an athletic field behind Danvers High School. Her throat had been slashed with a boxcutter and she had been punched in the face, police officials said. An indictment released today charged Chism with murder, aggravated rape and armed robbery in connection with the savage attack. The teenager is slated to appear at Salem District Court for a court hearing Friday. The affidavit, in chilling detail, offers the first hint of a possible motive in last month's gruesome killing of the popular high school teacher.
A ninth grade student told investigators that she was in class with Chism and Ritzer after school on the day of the crime, the affidavit said. She said the teacher and Chism were talking about China but, at some point, Ritzer mentioned the student's home state of Tennessee. Chism became "visibly upset," the student said. When Ritzer noticed that Chism was upset, she changed the subject, said the unidentified student, who described Chism as "talking to himself."
According to court documents, Chism followed Ritzer into a bathroom after he pulled on gloves, an act that was captured on a school security camera. He moved her body out of the bathroom in a blue recycle bin on wheels, the documents state. He then went home to change his bloody clothes and ate lunch at Wendy's before seeing a Woody Allen movie at Hollywood Hits, a theater not far from his Danvers home which he shares with his mother and two younger sisters, according to police.
The affidavit includes testimony from eyewitnesses as well as a school video surveillance timeline showing Chism and Ritzer in the same area of the school during the teacher's final moments.
In the video, Ritzer appears to enter a second-floor girls restroom -- apparently a faculty restroom was occupied -- and Chism, wearing gloves and red sweatshirt with the hood pulled over his head, appears to enter the restroom about a minute later, according to the affidavit.
Shortly after, a female student enters the bathroom and quickly walks out, according to court papers. She told investigators she saw the back of a person who appeared to be changing clothes. The person's rear was exposed, with clothes piled on the floor.
The video shows Chism leaving the restroom, returning later with a recycling barrel, and again leaving the restroom pulling the barrel -- this time with a black mask on his forehead, the court papers say. He pulls the barrel outside the building and toward the student parking lot. Investigators said there are what appear to be blood stains near the bathroom as well as on Chism's pants in the video. Ritzer, 24, was allegedly raped with an object and had her throat slashed. A handwritten note found next to her body said, "I hate you all."
On the night of Oct. 22, both Ritzer and Chism were reported missing.
Essex County prosecutors said it was a brutal assault, according to the indictment released today. Chism allegedly raped Ritzer "with an object" and stole her underwear, iPhone and credit cards after the murder, said Essex County District Attorney Jonathon Blodgett in a statement. Chism was arrested and charged with first degree murder as an adult at 5 a.m. Oct. 23 and Ritzer's body was found a short time later. "The indictments returned today detail horrific and unspeakable acts," Blodgett stated. "This is the first step in a long process to secure justice for Ms. Ritzer and her family." Blodgett said Chism will be arraigned on the additional charges of rape and armed robbery but no date has been set.
Chism pleaded not guilty at his arraignment on the murder charge last month. Chism's lawyer could not be immediately reached.
Posted: November 21, 2013 - 12:42pm - Updated: November 21, 2013 - 09:12 pm PST
Bad Lawyering, or ...?
Martha Moxley is shown at age 14 in an 1974 photo. Moxley was slain Oct. 30, 1975. Michael Skakel's conviction in her death was set aside and new trial ordered Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013, by Connecticut judge Thomas Bishop, who ruled that Skakel's trial attorney failed to adequately represent him when he was found guilty in 2002.
STAMFORD, Conn. — Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel was granted bail Thursday and expected to be released from prison while prosecutors in Connecticut appeal a ruling giving him a new trial in the 1975 slaying of neighbor Martha Moxley.
Skakel, the 53-year-old nephew of Robert F. Kennedy’s widow, Ethel, touched his hand to his chest and looked back at his supporters in the courtroom, his brothers among them, as the judge set bail at $1.2 million. He has been in prison more than 11 years on a sentence of 20 years to life but was expected to be freed shortly after the hearing in Stamford Superior Court.
As conditions of the bail, the judge ordered that Skakel live in Connecticut and wear a GPS tracking device.
“He’s one of the most recognized faces of America, so he’s not going anywhere,” defense attorney Hubert Santos said, noting that Skakel always showed up for court appearances. Santos said after the hearing ended that Skakel was “very happy” about the outcome.
A judge ruled last month that Skakel’s trial attorney, Michael Sherman, failed to adequately represent Skakel in 2002 when he was convicted in Moxley’s bludgeoning with a golf club in wealthy Greenwich when they were both 15. Judge Thomas Bishop said Sherman failed to locate a witness who backed up Skakel’s alibi that he was at his cousin’s house the night of the murder and failed to find a man who challenged a star witness’s claim that Skakel confessed.
“This is the first step in correcting a terrible wrong,” the Skakel family said in a statement. “We look forward to Michael being vindicated and justice finally being served.”
Outside court, Moxley’s brother, John, and mother, Dorthy, said they disagreed with the bail decision, continue to believe Skakel killed Martha and are confident he will be convicted again at a new trial.
“I’m disappointed. … I guess we knew that the day would come,” Dorthy Moxley said. “I wasn’t completely destroyed, but I wish it didn’t happen.”
Added John Moxley, “We have nothing to say to Michael.”
Robert Kennedy Jr., who campaigned to overturn Skakel’s conviction, had said this week that he felt “pure joy” that his cousin was expected to be released. Skakel has seen his son only a handful of times since he was sent to prison, he said.
“Everybody in my family knows that Michael is innocent,” Kennedy said Tuesday. “He was in jail for over a decade for a crime he didn’t commit. The only crime that he committed was having a bad lawyer.”
Santos had argued that Skakel should be released immediately, saying that the ruling makes him an innocent defendant awaiting trial and that he was not a flight risk. Santos also argued prosecutors were highly unlikely to win their appeal, a contention prosecutors dispute.
The case was considered a big challenge for prosecutors because of issues including the age of the crime and the lack of forensic evidence. Michael Skakel was convicted after a trial that focused on testimony that he confessed or made incriminating statements over the years.
Both Sherman and prosecutors defended his handling of the case.
Skakel’s older brother, Thomas, was an early suspect in the case because he was the last person seen with the victim, and Bishop said in his ruling that Michael Skakel’s defense should have focused more on Thomas.
Posted: 4:32 PM EST, Fri November 22, 2013 - Updated: 5:32 PM PST, Fri November 22, 2013
Massachusetts (WCJB) -- Annie Dookhan, 36, a former Massachusetts crime lab chemist, was sentenced Friday to three to five years in prison after pleading guilty to 27 counts of mishandling evidence, affecting hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of criminal cases. Dookhan was arrested last year, accused of cutting corners by visually identifying alleged drug samples instead of performing chemical tests, and then altering the samples to cover up the practice. Dookhan also was accused of falsely claiming, while testifying as an expert witness at a criminal trial, that she had a master's degree in chemistry from the University of Massachusetts. Authorities arrested Dookhan at her home in Franklin in September 2012. Dookhan pleaded guilty Friday to tampering with evidence, perjury, obstruction of justice and falsely claiming to holding a master's degree. An investigation revealed that not only did Dookhan not have a master's degree, but she never took master's-level classes, prosecutors said.
A defendant's conviction was overturned because of this, and authorities allege he killed someone in May, after his release. Dookhan's false testimony about her credentials in a Plymouth County drug trial led to the release of a man who went on to be accused of murder, Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy Cruz said. Donta Hood was convicted of a cocaine charge in 2009, in a trial in which Dookhan -- as an expert witness -- falsely testified that she had a master's degree, authorities said. Hood was released in November 2012. Cruz said he wasn't able to retry Evans on the drug charge because the evidence in the case was destroyed. Storage space had been at a premium, he said, and no one thought it would be needed again. After his release, Hood was arrested twice -- first, on a gun possession charge. While out on bail for the gun charge, he allegedly shot and killed Charles Evans in Brockton, Massachusetts, in May, authorities said. "There's no bigger pain than somebody being released that goes out and kills somebody," Cruz told media sources. Evans' family declined to comment.
Dookan said little during Friday's hearing in Boston, other than repeatedly saying, "Yes, your honor," to questions such as whether she understood the consequences of her guilty pleas. The judge also ordered that she serve two years of probation after serving the prison time.
Dookhan worked as a state chemist testing drug evidence submitted by law enforcement agencies from 2003 until March 2012, when she resigned, according to the Massachusetts attorney general's office. The attorney general's office began a criminal investigation in July 2012, after Massachusetts State Police were tipped off by Dookhan's co-workers, who alleged her work at the William A. Hinton State Laboratory in Jamaica Plain might be unreliable. The investigation revealed that Dookhan allegedly had tampered with evidence by altering substances in vials that were being tested at the state lab, allegedly to cover up the practice of routinely "dry labbing" samples. "Dry labbing" is a term used for visually identifying samples instead of performing the required chemical test. Some of the obstruction charges stem from instances in which authorities relied on tampered evidence in criminal proceedings, prosecutors said.
In August, Gov. Deval Patrick's administration said the cases of more than 40,000 defendants could be affected by Dookhan's tampering. Reviews of all the cases she handled are under way. More than 300 drug convictions involving Dookhan's tests -- conducted from 2003 to 2012 -- have been set aside since last year in Suffolk County alone, Suffolk County District Attorney spokesman Jake Wark said.
At a court proceeding earlier this year, Dookhan's lawyer said that she took shortcuts in the lab to get more cases done to help her career, never considering the negative consequences it could have for criminal cases. "The furthest thing from her mind is that this is going to ultimately cost millions of dollars, (And that) it's going to throw the entire Massachusetts criminal justice system into a tailspin," the lawyer said in court. Dookhan declined media sources request for comment about her case.
Posted: 8:34 PM EST, Wed Jan. 9, 2013 - Updated 10:34 AM PST, Mon. Jan. 14, 2013
Franklin, Massachusetts (WCJB) -- A former Massachusetts state chemist accused of misconduct in thousands of criminal cases was arraigned in two different courts last week on additional charges relating to her alleged false claims about holding a master's degree in chemistry. In one court, Annie Dookhan, 34 (pictured left) of Franklin, Massachusetts, pleaded not guilty to three counts of obstruction of justice in Middlesex Superior Court in Woburn, Massachusetts. Her next court date there is February 8 for a pre-trial conference. Later In the day, she again pleaded not guilty to two counts of obstruction of justice in Norfolk Superior Court in Dedham, Massachusetts. She allegedly "lied about the integrity of drug evidence that she analyzed," the attorney general said in a statement last year. She was released on her personal recognizance and is scheduled for another pre-trial conference there in February.
In October, police arrested the former chemist on accusations that she had lied about drug evidence she handled while working at a state police lab and pretended to hold a master's degree in chemistry from the University of Massachusetts. In December, Dookhan was indicted in Suffolk County in Boston on charges relating to alleged mishandling of evidence and obstruction. She is facing charges in several counties in Massachusetts because she had previously testified in various trials in her former official capacity as a chemist.
The former chemist has admitted to wrongdoing during her nine-year employment with the Department of Public Health. Massachusetts authorities are reviewing the sentences of 1,140 people who are in prison after being convicted with evidence at least partly provided by Dookhan. A preliminary investigation looked into every case Dookhan may have touched from 2003 until she left last March, and it is possible she touched 60,000 samples that were involved in 34,000 drug cases. Dookhan worked as a chemist in the Hinton State Lab's drug analysis unit -- which tested drug evidence submitted by law enforcement agencies across the state -- from 2003 until last March, when she resigned, according to a statement last month by Massachusetts attorney general's office.
Dookan was promoted from chemist I to chemist II in 2005. Her work was "consistently the highest in the lab among her co-workers" until June 2011, when an evidence officer discovered that 90 samples of drugs had been improperly "scanned out of the drug safe" and that Dookhan's name appeared on the control card as the primary chemist, the attorney general's office said. "The next day, when Dookhan was confronted with the log book, the initials of Gloria Philips had suddenly appeared in the book," the attorney general's statement said. Phillips was an evidence officer, according to the statement. Dookhan denied writing the initials at first, but she "later confessed to investigators" that she forged them "to cover up her misconduct," the statement said.
"There will be designated court sessions in each county to hear the cases," Chief Justice Robert Mulligan said last October in a statement. "The Trial Court is fully cooperating with the prosecutors and defense counsel who are responding to these issues."
State police were tipped off last July by Dookhan's co-workers at the William A. Hinton State Laboratory in Jamaica Plain who alleged her work might be unreliable. At the time, state police were taking over what had previously been a Department of Public Health drug laboratory, which certified random drug tests for the police departments in Norfolk, Suffolk, Middlesex and Bristol Counties, as well as for Cape Cod and the nearby islands. During the takeover, authorities learned from employees how they were afraid to verify the work of Dookhan, said a spokesman for the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security. Last July, Massachusetts State Police investigators interviewed lab employees. On August 28, Dookhan "admitted to 'dry labbing' some of the samples," the statement said. "Dry labbing" is the practice of merely visually identifying samples instead of performing the required chemical test, the attorney general said.
"It was discovered that Dookhan would assemble multiple drug samples from different cases that appeared to be the same substance. She would then perform the chemical tests on a few of the samples to verify that the samples were in fact the drug she believed they were, and if those were positive, would assume all the samples were positive without performing the necessary chemical tests," the attorney general said. Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick ordered the lab to be shut down on August 30.
Surren Dookhan, Annie Dookhan’s husband, sent a text message to George Papachristos, former Norfolk Count assistant district attorney and a noted friend of Annie Dookhan, calling her a liar, according to media sources. According to the source: “This is Annie’s husband do not believe her, she’s a liar, she’s always lying,” Surren Dookhan texted to the prosecutor, according to an interview Papachristos gave to State Police on Oct. 3, 2012. “She is looking for sympathy and attention.”
February 25, 2013
LINCOLN, R.I. — A Lincoln police officer convicted earlier this year of felony battery for kicking a handcuffed woman in the head outside the Twin River Casino has resigned from the department. Media sources reports that the Lincoln town administrator said the town had accepted an "unconditional and irrevocable" resignation from Officer Edward Krawetz (KRA'-witz). Krawetz, who was on an unpaid suspension, had been fighting to keep his job, but decided to drop his effort to remain on the force.
A state judge convicted Krawetz in January of felony battery with a dangerous weapon for kicking Donna Levesque, of Uxbridge, Mass., outside the casino. The encounter was caught on surveillance video.
In March, Krawetz was given a 10-year suspended sentence with probation.
March 27, 2012
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Edward M. Krawetz, the suspended Lincoln patrolman convicted of battery for kicking a handcuffed woman in the head outside the Twin River slot parlor, was imposed a 10-year suspended sentence with probation and was ordered to undergo counseling. He will serve no prison time. Superior Court Judge Edward C. Clifton convicted Krawetz, of Lincoln, on Jan. 23 after a non-jury trial during which the prosecutor asserted that Krawetz committed the felony when he kicked Donna Levesque, of Uxbridge, Mass., in the head on the evening of May 31, 2009. The incident was caught in Twin River security video.
November 23, 2010
Messy Mya funeral!
November 17, 2010 Nine people, including three Prince George's County police officers, were arrested Monday on charges involving drugs, guns, and black-market alcohol and cigarettes as authorities ratcheted up a sprawling corruption probe in the county. Federal agents conducted numerous searches around the county and moved to seize more than 30 homes, businesses and vehicles as part of the widening investigation into corruption in Prince George's. The nine suspects were arrested three days after County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D) and his wife were led from their home in handcuffs, accused of evidence-tampering in a probe of sweetheart land deals. Federal officials say the arrests are all connected. "This case and Friday's are among a series of related investigations," said Rod J. Rosenstein, the U.S. attorney for Maryland. He was referring to Monday's roundup of suspects and the arrests of the Johnsons on Friday, when the executive's wife allegedly flushed a $100,000 check down a toilet in their home and tried to hide $79,600 in cash in her bra as FBI agents knocked at the door of their home with a search warrant. Johnson, 61, due to leave office next month after two terms as executive, and his 58-year-old wife, Leslie Johnson (D), newly elected to the County Council, were released after their arrests. Jack Johnson was back at work Monday doing the job "the people had elected him to do," his spokesman said, adding that couple are "strong and faithful." The nine people arrested Monday were taken into custody early in the morning in an operation involving about 150 law enforcement officers who executed as many as a dozen search warrants. Among those charged are: • Police Sgt. Richard Delabrer, 45, of Laurel, • Cpl. Chong Chin Kim, 42, of Beltsville; and • Officer Sinisa Simic, 25, of Woodbridge. A federal indictment unsealed Monday alleges that liquor store owner Amrik S. Melhi, 51, and others paid Delabrer and Kim to guard the distribution of untaxed cigarettes and alcohol in Maryland and Virginia. Melhi, the two officers and four other suspects are charged with conspiracy to commit extortion. In a separate scheme, Simic is accused of conspiring to distribute cocaine and using firearms in drug trafficking. Another of the nine suspects, Mirza Kujundzic, 30, of Woodbridge, was charged with those same offenses. The indictment, filed in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt, seeks the court-ordered forfeiture of $3.5 million in cash, 25 homes and businesses, 13 vehicles and 84 bank accounts that authorities said are associated with the alleged crimes. Melhi, of Clarksville, owns several liquor stores, including Tick Tock Liquor and Restaurant in Langley Park, where Delabrer worked off-duty as a security guard. Tick Tock is well known in the county and is one of the most lucrative liquor stores in the area. Online property records indicate that Melhi owns several homes and properties in Prince George's and Maryland. The others charged in the alleged booze and cigarettes scheme were identified as Melhi's wife, Ravinder K. Melhi, 49; Amir Milijkovic, 39, of Bowie, who owns a College Park auto glass store; Chun Chen, 34, of Bowie; and Jose Moreno, 49, of Alexandria. All were ordered held until detention hearings Tuesday and later this week. Eugene Pitroff, a lawyer, said federal agents raided his Upper Marlboro office Monday and seized records related to work he had done to help Amrick Melhi and several relatives obtain liquor licenses in Prince George's and Calvert counties. Pitroff represented Tick Tock in 2007, when Johnson, citing an increase in crime and unruly behavior, ordered a crackdown on nightclubs in the county. After negotiating with the county, club owners, including Melhi, agreed to beef up security at their establishments and install new lights and cameras. Maryland law sets caps on the number of liquor licenses that local jurisdictions can issue, meaning that most stores and restaurants obtain licenses via transfers from other stores and restaurants that are closing. Critics of the system have long said that it favors business owners who form alliances with state lawmakers and local politicians. Campaign finance records show that Amrik Melhi has donated money to several Prince George's political candidates, including Johnson. "As far as I knew, these were decent people," Pitroff said of Melhi and the relatives he helped obtained licenses. "All this stuff has come as a shock to me." Among the properties that authorities have moved to confiscate, in addition to Tick Tock, are what appear to be several liquor stores in the county, including Shop Rite Liquors in Takoma Park. Public records indicate that Shop Rite is partly owned by Karl Granzow, a former deputy fire chief in Prince George's. Granzow's home was searched in 2008 in the probe of development deals. At the time, Granzow declined to comment. As for the liquor store, Granzow's attorney, Timothy Maloney, said Granzow has a 25 percent stake in the business but is not involved in its daily operation. He said he does not think investigators are interested in his client. Prince George's Police Chief Roberto L. Hylton (pictured left) said that before Monday morning, he knew very little of the federal investigation that now includes three of his officers. "I'm outraged at the disgraceful conduct demonstrated by three of our officers who tarnished our badge for their own greed and personal gain," he said. "These individuals are just bad people that need to go away." He said that federal authorities "did not share the targets, the names of the targets with me," so he could not suspend all those involved while the investigation continues. Hylton said that officers might soon be prohibited from working part time at establishments that are not properly licensed or are known to serve too much alcohol. "We are going to go back with a process that will require each of our officers to submit a request to work at a location before they are approved," Hylton said, adding that a deputy chief will review each of the requests. "We have to really rein this back in. I think we have to address the issue of greed." Since Johnson's arrest Friday and the announcement from the chief federal prosecutor that more charges were coming, anxiety and speculation have been rampant in Prince George's. The Johnsons' arrests grew out of a four-year FBI investigation into developers and their associates suspected of "regularly providing things of value to public officials" in exchange for official favors, according to a 10-page affidavit filed with the criminal complaint. The investigation centered on alleged bribes that Jack Johnson took in exchange for helping an unidentified developer seek grant money from a federal affordable-housing program administered by the county's Department of Housing and Community Development. The developer gave Johnson cash and checks as far back as 2007, including one for $100,000, according to the affidavit.
Prince George's County ! Massachusetts!
July 8, 2011 A Boston police officer at the center of one of the most notorious police brutality cases in city history used unreasonable force while arresting a man in the North End in 2009, then lied about the episode to department investigators, according to an Internal Affairs Division report obtained by local media sources. As a result, Officer David C. Williams has been placed on paid administrative leave, the Boston Police Department said, and could lose his job under Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis’s nearly 19-month-old policy of dismissing officers who lie in the line of duty, to internal affairs investigators, or in court. Williams is appealing the finding, and a hearing is scheduled for later this month. Williams was fired from the force in 1999 after being implicated in the racially charged 1995 beating of undercover police officer Michael Cox, then reinstated with nearly $550,000 in back pay after a civil service arbitration in 2005. Williams’s attorney insisted his client told the truth about the 2009 North End arrest. “He’s absolutely testified honestly and truthfully about the incident that occurred,’’ the attorney said. “Any conflicts about the incident were the result of a fast and rapidly evolving incident.’’ Michael P. O’Brien, a 30-year-old Middlesex County corrections officer, filed a civilian complaint against Williams and five other officers who arrested him on Hanover Street on March 16, 2009. O’Brien said that Williams drove his head into the sidewalk and choked him after he began recording Williams and his partner with a cellphone as the two officers responded to a minor traffic accident. Williams’s partner, Officer Diep Hung Nguyen, was cleared of three charges, including using unnecessary force, as were the four other officers involved in the arrest. Williams was cleared on four charges, including two counts of violating the rule for respectful treatment. Nguyen’s lawyer did not return calls seeking comment yesterday. Despite the findings against Williams, O’Brien said it was “a sickening feeling’’ to read the Internal Affairs Division report clearing officers of other charges. “It was like a kick in the gut,’’ he said. “I was expecting to be exonerated. I was expecting them to come out to say: ‘This is a lie. These charges aren’t true. This arrest was false.’ As happy as I am they’re charging him with something, it’s tough. It’s a knock at your credibility as a person.’’ O’Brien, of Methuen, a former National Guardsman, has filed a federal lawsuit against Williams, Nguyen, and the Boston Police Department. He alleges that he suffers from debilitating headaches and dizziness as a result of the arrest, and that his career as a correction officer and his aspirations to join the Army’s Special Forces have been “flipped upside down.’’ O’Brien was arrested after Williams and Nguyen responded to a fender-bender on Hanover St. According to police and court documents, O’Brien and two friends were in a car that backed down Hanover Street and clipped a double-parked vehicle. In his incident report, Williams wrote that O’Brien “became very unruly’’ and “pushed Officer Nguyen.’’ But according to the Internal Affairs report obtained by the Globe, Williams, who is 6-foot-3 and 242 pounds, used an “unreasonable amount of force’’ to arrest O’Brien, who was 5-foot-9 and 160 pounds at the time. The report also found that Williams, 48, was “untruthful in his statements’’ when interviewed by department investigators. The Internal Affairs Division ruled that Nguyen, 33, used “reasonable and proper force’’ to arrest O’Brien and that Nguyen properly arrested O’Brien for disorderly conduct. The report also found that while Nguyen directed profanity at O’Brien and an unnamed witness to the arrest, investigators were “unable to prove or disprove’’ a violation of department rules mandating respectful treatment of civilians. O’Brien said he did not see the other four officers who took part in the arrest and does not know how they became part of the investigation. The notice of findings, signed by Superintendent Kenneth Fong of the Police Department’s Bureau of Professional Standards, provides no details about how investigators came to their conclusions, nor does it shed light on how Williams was untruthful during the internal investigation. O’Brien and his attorney, Howard Friedman, said he could not discuss the case or his lawsuit because the information is being kept secret at the urging of the police under a court order. But O’Brien was willing to say what punishment he believes Williams deserves. “He should be fired; he should have been fired a long time ago,’’ O’Brien said. “I was astonished that someone with such a history could be working on the Police Department.’’ Under department rules, Williams could accept the internal affairs findings and submit to Davis’s discipline. However, Williams is challenging the findings, which means the department has to conduct an administrative hearing before the commissioner or his designee. According to the department’s rules and procedures, any recommendations by the hearing board will not be binding on the police commissioner. Williams, who joined the department in 1991, was among a group of officers found responsible for the vicious 1995 beating of a plainclothes officer, Michael Cox. At the time, Williams and the others said they mistook Cox, who is black, for a murder suspect they were chasing. Cox was nearly beaten to death on a dead-end street in Mattapan. Williams and two other officers were fired for their role in the episode, although none were criminally charged. The Boston Police Department took Williams back after a civil service arbitrator ruled he was dismissed without just cause. Cox, now a deputy police superintendent, sued the city and won $817,000. He later sued Williams after Williams was reinstated and reached an out-of-court settlement with him.
July 26, 2009 “Cambridge police acted stupidly in arresting somebody when there was already proof he was in own home.”
-President Barack Obama - July 2009On July 15, 2009, prominent black scholar, Professor Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr. was arrested at the two-story home he rents from Harvard. Professor Gates is the director of Harvard’s W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African-American Research. He is Summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Yale. Dr. Gates is also a MacArthur "genius grant" recipient. He is an acclaimed historian, Harvard professor and PBS documentarian. Dr. Gates was one of Time magazine's "25 Most Influential Americans" in 1997. He is the Holder of 50 honorary degrees. Professor Gates had returned from a trip to China on Thursday with a driver, when he found his front door jammed. He went through the back door into the home — which he leases from Harvard — shut off an alarm and worked with the driver to get the door open. The driver left, and Gates was on the phone with the property’s management company when police first arrived. Cambridge police say they responded to the well-maintained two-story home near campus after a woman reported seeing “two black males with backpacks on the porch,” with one “wedging his shoulder into the door as if he was trying to force entry.” By the time police arrived, Gates was already inside. Police demanded that Gates (pictured left) show identification. Gates was arrested shortly afterward for alleged disorderly conduct, a charge that was later dropped. Crowley said Professor Gates “exhibited loud and tumultuous behavior.” He was released later that day on his own recognizance. An arraignment was scheduled for Aug. 26, 2009.
Cambridge Sgt. Leon Lashley, an "uncle tom," black sergeant (N-word pictured next to Sgt. Crowley; giving peace sign) who was at the home of Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr. when he was arrested, says Gates "may have caused grave and potentially irreparable harm to the struggle for racial harmony." Lashley says he fully supports how his white fellow officer handled the situation. Sgt. Lashley says Gates was probably tired and surprised when Sgt. James Crowley demanded identification from him as officers investigated a report of a burglary. Lashley says Gates' reaction to Crowley was "a little bit stranger than it should have been." Asked if Gates should have been arrested, Lashley said he supported Crowley "100 percent." Throughout the country, minority police officers continue to fall victim to their trigger- and baton-happy white comrades. Some of those on the receiving end of attacks by white cops turn out to be their minority colleagues. "It happens all the time. The cover-up is unbelievable," says Ron Hampton, executive director of the National Black Police Association in Washington, D.C., a retired 24-year member of the Washington, D.C. force who has never heard of a white officer being attacked by a minority officer. "It happened to me. I was stopped, questioned--everything." • (New York City - 2009) Seven weeks ago Omar Edwards, an off-duty black officer, was shot dead by a white officer who mistook him for a criminal suspect. See Video Update on Shooting. • (California - November 2008) Inspector Marvetia Lynn Richardson, 41, a 14-year San Francisco police veteran who is now on unpaid leave from her job, said Antioch [Calif.] officers broke down her door last year, stunned her with a Taser and then took her to jail when she demanded they write "Tasered" on a citation for resisting arrest. Richardson, who is black, said the incident was an outgrowth of Antioch police efforts to enter homes without warrants to harass and drive African American tenants out of federally subsidized housing. Richardson owns her home and [does] not receive [any] housing assistance. Antioch police referred to Richardson during the incident as the "alleged homeowner" and "this so-called SFPD lady," the suit said. C.J. Note: Oakland (CA) Police Officer Hector Jimenez was placed on one (1) year's paid leave after gunning down two unarmed African-American males witihin a seven (7) month period of time. A large number of African-Americans are being gentrified out of Oakland. As a result of gentrification they are moving to Antioch, CA for lower rents and subsidized housing. • (Philadelphia - January 1995) African-American officer Adrienne Cureton, a six-year veteran of the Philadelphia Police Department, fell victim of one of the nastiest attacks by white co-workers ever recorded. On Jan. 2, 1995, Cureton, then 26, was working her usual night shift as a plainclothes member of the juvenile division. She was taking a report on a missing 2-year-old girl when a squabble broke out in the home. Officers arriving to provide backup entered the home and proceeded to beat Cureton senseless--perhaps as many as 20 of them pummeling her with flashlights and fists as she repeatedly cried, "I'm a police officer!" Eventually a black officer put an end to the assault. "I personally believe that they saw 'black.' They grabbed me and did what they had the opportunity to do," Cureton told the Philadelphia Daily News. "It was like Rodney King--only I'm a cop. Even if I wasn't a cop, they had no right to beat somebody like that." The Cureton case is far from the only recent example of white-on-black police violence: • (New York - 1994) Black New York transit officer Desmond Robinson was shot in the back four times as he lay on the ground after an unrelated shooting investigation went haywire. • (Nashville, TN - Dec. 14, 1992) Black police officer Reggie Miller was choked, kneed, and eye-gouged by five officers following a routine traffic stop. • (New York - November 18, 1992) Black New York City transit officer Derwin Pannell was fired upon 21 times and critically wounded while arresting a farebeater. • (California - 1988) Black Oakland police officer Derrick Norfleet was working undercover when he was rammed by a patrol car and beaten by a trio of officers--two of whom sat in the same room with Norfleet at a precinct meeting two hours earlier. Oakland Police Officer Lt. Derrick Norfleet, 45, (Deceased) committed suicide at his home in Vallejo (July 2008). Norfleet was assigned to the patrol division and had been with the department for more than 22 years. The "uncle tom," Sgt. Lashley was saying, ...?
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