Category Archives: Cops Gone Wild

International Concern Over Killing of Arab Law Student By Police

I had no plans on writing any posts involving police use of excessive force for the rest of this year.   We are currently following the trial of Dylann Roof, who murdered 9 people in their church.  That came on the heels of following the trial of Michael Slager, who shot an unarmed running Walter Scott in the back.  The jury hung.  Slager’s trial came on the heel of the trial of Ray Tensing, who shot unarmed Sam Dubose in the head while he was sitting in his car.  That jury hung.

It’s not only the subject matter, but the judicial results that can be a burden on the heart and mind.  This afternoon, I threw off the burden when learning about another unarmed person killed by the police.   He was a human being.  He has a family. There are people who love him.  He will be missed.

The reason for this post is because I did not hear of the incident through major news sources when it happened.  There was no ticker across the bottom of the screen on CNN nor MSNBC.  (I don’t watch Fox News.)

Because I look for professional views regarding cases in court, I subscribe to Law.com in Practice.  Their Newsletters generally focus on what is happening in cases in courts and case decisions.  So, it was interesting when reading in their Newsletter about a dash cam video and a law student being shot dead by a police officer in Ohio.

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Saif Nasser Mubarak Alameri

This incident is one to watch because it involves another country that is interested in how the State of Ohio is conducting its investigation into the death of Saif Nasser Mubarak Alameri.

Saif Nasser Mubarak Alameri was 26-years old.  He was a student at Case Western Reserve University School of Law .  Saif obtained a bachelor’s in law at the United Arab Emirates University. He was in the United States on a student visa and academic scholarship.

There are scant details.  According to the National Law Journal and Arab news sources, the Ohio State Highway Patrol received a call about an erratic driver on Sunday, December 4, 2016.  Alameri was driving on the Ohio Turnpike about 2:46 p.m. when he sideswiped another vehicle and flipped his vehicle, according to Hudson police.  He then climbed out of his car and fled the scene before the Ohio State Highway Patrol arrived.

Nearly one hour later, Officer Ryan Doran, a Hudson, Ohio police officer, found Alameri in a nearby wooded area off of Hudson-Aurora Road. Read the rest of this entry

Keith Lamont Scott killing: No charges against officer, DA says

If carrying a concealed weapon makes one a threat, then America is geared for slaughter on the streets.

MB3-org.com

Charlotte, North Carolina (CNN)The officer who fatally shot Keith Lamont Scott won’t face charges, a prosecutor said Wednesday, closing a two-month investigation into the killing that led to heated protests and divided the city of Charlotte.

Mecklenburg County District Attorney Andrew Murray said he didn’t reach the decision alone; a total of 15 prosecutors unanimously agreed that Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Officer Brentley Vinson was justified in shooting Scott on September 20 in an apartment complex parking lot.
In his hour-long announcement, Murray refuted a series of “erroneous claims” made shortly after the shooting. He said those narratives fueled widespread misconceptions about what actually happened.
Among them:
— Scott’s relatives said he didn’t have a gun, but “all the credible evidence” led to the conclusion that Scott was armed, Murray said. He said Scott’s DNA was on the grip of a gun found at the scene.
Murray also said at least…

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Michael Slager Testifies In His Defense – Part 3

161129-slager-trial-1143_db93a13264a21b3e431c4e31283b7bf2-nbcnews-ux-600-480Michael Slager took the witness stand at his murder trial today.  Following him were defense witnesses who tried to explain how Slager has selective memory.

Before watching Slager’s testimony, and if you have not yet watched it, here is the video captured by a bystander.  It shows when Slager fired his gun at Walter Scott as Scott was running away.

 

Here is Slager’s testimony, giving his non-video version.

 

 

Read the rest of this entry

Ray Tensing To Be Retried For Murder, Voluntary Manslaughter – CNN.com

Hat Tip to Pat/Ohio

CNN Reports

(Published using Press This)

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Samuel Dubose. Ray Tensing is being retried for murder.

Ray Tensing, a former University of Cincinnati officer who shot and killed a black man during a traffic stop in 2015, will be retried on murder and voluntary manslaughter charges, prosecutors in Ohio announced Tuesday.

A mistrial was declared November 12, after jurors spent more than 25 hours deliberating but could not come to a decision.

Tensing, who is white, shot Sam DuBose in the head in July 2015 after pulling him over for a missing front license plate and asking for his license, an incident that was largely captured on body camera video.”

After careful consideration, I have decided that the Tensing case will be retried,” Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters said in a statement Tuesday.

“This decision was made after review of the trial transcript, discussion with some of the jurors, and consultation with my staff,” Deters said.”I am hopeful that a second jury will be able to reach a decision to bring justice in this case for the victim’s family and our community.” Read the rest of this entry

Michael Slager On Trial for Killing Walter Scott – Trial Continues Part 2

2015-04-08t23-05-56-033z-1280x720-nbcnews-ux-1080-600The murder trial of ex-cop Michael Slager began on November 3rd, and you can find the videos of the trial at the following link up to Thursday, November 10th.  There was no trial on Veteran’s Day.

Post and Courier reports that the trial has been contentious.  Judge Clifton Newman has cautioned defense attorneys to not testify themselves, but the defense continues using that tactic.

During trial, you hear “SLED” allot.  That is the acronym for South Carolina Law Enforcement Division.

Here are some highlights of the trial;

  • The bystander who filmed the killing, Feidin Santana, has testified.  He stood strong against the defense trying to get him to agree that there was a “fight,” and Santana continued correcting the defense that he saw no fight.
  • Slager’s former colleagues have testified that he told them that Walter Scott managed to wrestle his taser away from him and pointed it at him, prompting him to fire his service weapon.
  • On Tuesday, Almon Brown, a state crime scene investigator, testified that he was concerned when he examined Scott’s body because what he saw didn’t match what he had been told about how Scott died.
  • Levi Miles, a private investigator for Michael Slager’s former defense lawyer, testified that Slager showed him during a re-enactment that Walter Scott was coming toward the officer before the gunfire. When he compared that with what he saw in a video of the shooting, Miles said, “That part of it seemed to be a lot different.”

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Former Police Officer Michael Slager on Trial for Killing Walter Scott

2015-04-08t23-05-56-033z-1280x720-nbcnews-ux-1080-600On April 4, 2015, in North Charleston, South Carolina, at approximately 9:30 a.m., Walter Scott was pulled over for a non-functioning brake-light.  At some point, Walter got out of his car and ran.  He was pursued by police officer Michael Slager.  The situation ended with Slager shooting 50-year old Walter 5 times in the back as Walter ran away from him.

A by-stander recorded the portion of the incident where Walter ran, Slager fired his gun, and then picked up a taser and placed it by Walter’s body.  Slager’s defense centered around the taser.  He alleged that Walter used the taser on him and was coming towards him, causing him to shoot Walter.  Slager’s original lawyer, David Aylor, withdrew as counsel within hours of the release of the video. Read the rest of this entry

Former Officer Ray Tensing on Trial For Killing Sam DuBose

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Sam DuBose

On July 19 2015, Sam DuBose was shot and killed by now former University of Cincinnati Police Officer Ray Tensing.  Hamilton County prosecutors say that DuBose’s death was unwarranted and it was murder.  Sam did not have a weapon or appear to be reaching for a weapon.

Tensing’s defense is that DuBose dragged him with the car.

Prosecutors say that Tensing’s bodycam shows that he was not dragged.  A grand jury indicted Tensing on charges of murder and voluntary manslaughter. Tensing was terminated from the police department.

The murder charge carries the possibility of life in prison. The voluntary manslaughter charge carries the possibility of 3 to 11 years in prison.

Tensing’s Background

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Ex Colorado Cop Convicted of Second Degree Murder Sentenced to 16 Years in Prison

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Jack Jacquez (left) James Ashby (right)

In June, I reported on the conviction of former Colorado police officer James Adam Ashby.  Ashby was found guilty for killing 27-year old Jack Jacquez in October 2014.  Ashby’s sentencing was scheduled for September 23, 2016.   There was a delay in sentencing. Ashby’s attorneys tried to have the conviction overturned, claiming there was insufficient evidence to convict, errors by the court during the proceedings, and several instances of juror misconduct.  The Colorado Judicial Department says the motion for a retrial was denied by a judge on October 20, 2016.

The second-degree murder conviction meant that Ashby could be sentenced up to 48 years in prison.

Today, Otero County District Court Judge Mark MacDonnell sentenced 32-year old Ashby to 16 years in prison; a $10K fine, and 5 years of parole upon his release.

An autopsy concluded that Jack Jacquez died from a single gunshot to the back that struck his spinal cord and pierced his heart and a lung.  Jack was in his home, which he shared with his mother who was home at the time.  Ashby had no reason to enter the house and said that he feared for his life because Jack was holding a baseball bat.  At trial, prosecutors argued that even if Jack was holding a baseball bat, that Ashby’s shooting him in the back evidenced that Ashby was not in fear for his life.

Sources:

The Raw Story

The Denver Post

MSN

Sheriff Joe Arpaio Charged With Criminal Contempt

Social Action 2014


Sheriff Joe Arpaio is in some legal trouble. Cenk Uygur and Ana Kasparian, hosts of The Young Turks, break it down. Tell us what you think in the comment section below. https://www.tytnetwork.com/join

“The longtime sheriff of metropolitan Phoenix was charged Tuesday with criminal contempt-of-court for ignoring a judge’s order in a racial-profiling case, leaving the 84-year-old lawman in a tough spot two weeks before Election Day as he seeks a seventh term.

Prosecutors promised two weeks ago that they would charge Sheriff Joe Arpaio, but the misdemeanor count wasn’t officially filed against him until U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton signed it.

On Wednesday, a federal judge set a Nov. 3 status conference — five days before the election — in the sheriff’s racial profiling case.

A formal trial date is scheduled for Dec. 6.

Arpaio could face up to six months in jail if convicted. A misdemeanor conviction would not…

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Former Police Sergeant Melissa M. Ruch Sentenced For Making False Report

Melissa M. Ruch

Former West Penn Township police Sgt. Melissa M. Ruch walks through the Schuylkill County Courthouse on Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2016, before pleading guilty. (REPUBLICAN HERALD, POTTSVILLE, PA)

On September 2, 2015, West Penn, Pennsylvania Township police sergeant Melissa M. Ruch said that she was assaulted.  She gave a description of the alleged perpetrator’s vehicle, and said that she deployed her taser which made contact.  Ruch, 42-years old, was treated at the scene and then flown to a hospital.

During the minutes and hours after the alleged assault, numerous state and municipal police units from several counties, along with a state police helicopter, searched for the vehicle described by Ruch and also for the man she said assaulted her.

To commemorate Patriot Day, on Sept. 11, 2015, state Senator David Argall presented Ruch with an award for her service and bravery stemming from the September 2nd incident.

On December 23, 2015, Ruch was charged with one misdemeanor count of false alarms to agencies of public safety and three misdemeanor counts of false reports to law enforcement authorities.  Ruch denied the charges saying, “The truth will come out.”

It did.

On October 19, 2016, Ruch pleaded guilty to one count of making a false report to law enforcement.  Prosecutors withdrew a second count of false reports to law enforcement, plus charges of false alarm and furnishing authorities with false information.

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Jackson Georgia Police Officer Charged With Felonies

On September 24, 2016, Jackson, Georgia police officer Sherry Hall was terminated from her job.  The Georgia Bureau of Investigation announced a day earlier that Hall faced felony charges of false statements, tampering with evidence, interference with government property and a violation of oath of office.

On Monday October 3, 2016, Hall was arrested, charged with the 4 felonies above.

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Sherry Hall mugshot.  Butts County Sheriff’s Office

Sherry Hall had been on her job with the Jackson police department for approximately 3 months when, on the night of September 13, 2016, she radioed in that she had been shot.  Hall described the shooter as a Black man wearing a green shirt and black jogging pants.  She said the bullet struck her vest, and she credited that with saving her life.  Hall said that the man ran.

Authorities put out the description of the shooter and started looking for him in the small, peaceful community where the shooting happened.

Only, there was no shooter at large. Hall made up the story.

Read the rest of this entry

Former Neptune Township, NJ Police Sgt. Philip Seidle Sentenced To 30 Years For Manslaughter

Some of you might remember this case that we originally reported in June 2015.

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Tamara Seidle

To recap, Phillip Seidle was a 22 year veteran of New Jersey’s Neptune Township Police department.  On June 16, 2015,  he chased his ex-wife as she was driving.  The couple has 9 children ranging from ages 7 to 24, but the  7-year old daughter was the only child in the car with Phillip. He rammed his wife’s car causing her to crash into another vehicle.

Phillip Seidle got out of his car, drew his 40 caliber Glock service pistol, and fired several shots into the side of his ex-wife’s car.  He then positioned himself in front of his ex-wife’s car and fired several more shots through the windshield. Tamara died.  The couple had been divorced for 3 weeks.

Dash Cam Video

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Video Released of Two Officers Killing 6-Year old Jeremy Mardis

I first reported on this on November 8, 2015 when the news reported that two officers were charged with second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder.  Since then, I’ve mentioned the name Jeremy Mardis several times; once was in criticism for Blue Lives Matter, who supports law enforcement who are charged with using deadly force.  The victims in this case are White, and the officers are Black.  Blue Lives Matter has been silent.

CNN now reports that a Louisiana judge released body cam video Wednesday showing officers firing multiple rounds into the car of Chris few, wounding Chris and killing his 6-year-old, autistic son Jeremy Mardis.

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Jeremy Mardis.  Jeremy was autistic and could not speak

The incident happened on September 2015 when Marshals saw an argument between a man and his girlfriend in front of a local bar.  Chris Few got into his car. As officers approached the car, Chris drove away.  The officers pursued.  The video shows that when Few drove into a dead end street, he put his hands up, but the officers opened fire anyway.

Officers Norris Greenhouse Jr., and Derrick Stafford are charged with second-degree murder and second-degree attempted murder.   Their first story was that they were attempting to serve a warrant on Chris Few, however that has been proven false. Greenhouse knew Few before the deadly encounter.   Investigators are looking into the extent of their relationship.

Jeremy was shot in the head and chest.  At Wednesday’s hearing, State Police forensics experts testified that they determined 18 shots were fired; 14 from Stafford’s gun and four from Greenhouse’s gun. Experts testified that Jeremy was hit five times. Two of the bullets were too damaged to link them to a specific gun.  Read the rest of this entry

What Began in 1993 Finally Results in Closure in 2016 For A Wrongfully Convicted Man

chicago-heightsIn 1994, Chicago Heights Deputy Chief of Police Sam Mangialardi was indicted after four years of investigation by federal authorities.  He was convicted on 16 counts of corruption that included racketeering, aiding and abetting a drug conspiracy, extortion to allow a drug ring to flourish,  money laundering, theft of government funds, civil rights conspiracy, filing false tax returns, and witness tampering.  Mangialardi accepted $10,000 monthly payments to protect the city’s top drug dealer.

In 1995, Mangialarid was sentenced to 10 and a half years in federal prison, ordered to pay $1.1 million in restitution, and fined more than $20,000.  Federal prosecutors described Mangialardi as being a “Godfather” like figure.

Sam Mangialardi, who was 46-years old when sentenced in 1995, was unapologetic and defiant.  At his sentencing, he presented that he was awarded Law Enforcement Officer of the Year by the American Police Hall of Fame for exchanging himself for a hostage and then overpowering his armed captor.

Mangialardi was not the only public official investigated, indicted and sentenced.  Then an  Assistant U.S. Attorney John Gallo said that the Chicago Heights Police Department was not run by the mob, but it was run like the mob.   Gallo did not seek the maximum penalty for Mangialardi because Mangialardi promised cooperation with future investigations.

Former Chicago Heights mayor Charles Panici, along with 14 other public officials and 6 Chicago Heights police officers were convicted of federal charges including civil rights violations, racketeering, witness tampering, bribery, extortion, and money laundering. Read the rest of this entry

What A Difference A Dash Cam Video Makes. Remember Marcus Jeter?

Under the post about the killing of Keith Scott, I mentioned a case where the commands of officers did not match with what the suspect was doing.  I conducted searches here on the blog, as well as Google, because I thought I had written about the incident around late 2014 or early 2015.

I did find a comment posted in January 2015, so the case was discussed at some point on this blog, but it might have been in the comment section rather than an actual post.

So, here it is.

Before I go further, I want to say that this is not a general accusation that all members of law enforcement are dishonest.  Rather, this case is one of many that causes citizens to question the honesty of what officers say was happening when giving commands.  a

Or, as New Jersey Superior Court Judge Ronald Wigler stated when sentencing one of the officers in this case,

“The public has to have confidence in their police departments.” 

It was June 7, 2012.  Police responded to a domestic-related call at the Bloomfield, New Jersey home of Marcus Jeter.  Marcus’ girlfriend lived in the house, and it was his girlfriend’s sister who called 911 alleging that Marcus threw his girlfriend’s cell phone down a staircase during a verbal dispute.

No one was arrested. No charges were filed. Read the rest of this entry

The Killing of Keith Lamont Scott

Subtitled; How CharlotteMecklenburg Chief of Police Kerr Putney Has Messed Up.

The citizens of Charlotte, North Carolina, have no trust in Putney’s inconsistent representations.

There are times when it’s best to be quiet rather than exert one-side of a story to the public. Putney has shown that he accepts whatever his officers say and therefore, cannot be any part of an impartial investigation.

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Keith Lamont Scott

Keith Lamont Scott was killed on Tuesday, September 20, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  There are so many conflicting points of view and reports that they make the head spin.

On September 22, 2016, Keith’s family was shown dash cam video.  The attorney for the family stated that the video shows that Keith was walking with both arms at his side, and no gun present.   Police Chief Kerr Putney refused to release the dash cam video to the public.

Keith’s wife took cell phone video and released it to the public yesterday.  News sources and social media arm-chair sleuths gave their opinions on what the video shows.  There was lots of jumping to conclusions because the cell phone video shows an officer standing at the passenger side window of a truck.  Some analyzing that video said that the officer would have been able to see that Keith was holding a gun by standing at that window of Keith’s truck.

police-shootNow, we learn that the officer was not standing at Keith’s truck, but he was standing at a truck parked on the opposite side of the street from where Keith was parked.

On the cell phone video, we hear an officer shouting for Keith to put down the gun.  On the dash cam video, Keith comes out of his truck and walks backwards with both arms at his side.  His hands are holding nothing.

It has not yet been explained how a person sitting in a car is to drop a gun when putting it out of the window can lead to the same assumption that it is being pointed with intent to fire. Read the rest of this entry

Charging Affidavit For Betty Shelby, Tulsa Officer Who Killed Terence Crutcher

 

 

Officer Who Killed Terence Crutcher Used Illegal Drugs and Had Restraining Order Against Her

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Betty Shelby; Terence Crutcher

On September 16, 2016, Terence Crutcher was shot dead by Tulsa Police Department Officer Betty Shelby.

Shelby was hired by the Tulsa Police Department in 2011 after working for the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office from June 2007 to November 2011.

In the 5 years that she’s been on the police force, Shelby had two excessive force complaints.  Authorities say that both were unfounded.

The following information is from Betty Shelby’s application for employment with the Tulsa Sheriff’s Department, which you can read at this link.

When she applied for a position as a deputy sheriff in 2007, Shelby had been married twice before she married Dave Shelby, her current husband, who also works for the Tulsa Police Department and was in the helicopter that captured video of Shelby killing Terence.

Based on her 2007 application for employment, Shelby had not worked since 2002.  Her last job before being hired as a deputy sheriff was as a teacher’s assistant.  She wrote on the application that she quit that job to attend school full-time.

On her application for employment, Shelby answered “yes” to the question, “Ever possessed or used illegal drugs?”

She also answered “yes” to having a protection order filed against her, or pending action.

Some sources are reporting purported letters that Shelby wrote explaining the orders of protection and her drug use, but those letters have not been publicly released.

NBC reports that the 42-year old officer’s work history and past conduct are now under scrutiny as authorities examine if she acted within reason in killing 40-year old Terence Crutcher.

Were You Scared? What Killed Terence Crutcher.

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A few days ago, a beloved former student of mine (a black man) from the charter school where I used to teach tagged me on Facebook with the following meme:(It’s probably good to note here that I’m one of those teachers that is better in retrospect than I am in the present moment. I’m kind of […]

via Were You Scared? — Maureen O’Leary

Ohio Police Officer Sentenced To 33 Months In Federal Prison

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Shane Mauger

On September 9, 2016, the United States Department of Justice announced that Reynoldsburg Police Officer Shane M. Mauger, 42, of Columbus, Ohio, was sentenced in U.S. District Court to 33 months in prison for using his position as a police officer to deprive people of their civil rights by falsifying search warrant affidavits and unlawfully seizing money and property during drug trafficking investigations.

An undercover officer, Tye Downard, was implicated in the case but committed suicide after he was arrested.  A third officer connected to the case was suspended earlier this year.

Mauger agreed to plead guilty to one count of federal program theft, and conspiracy to deprive persons of their civil rights.  Each count carries a sentence of up to 10 years in prison.  In addition to the 33 month prison sentence, Federal Judge Marbley also ordered Mauger to remain under court supervision for 2 years after he completes his prison sentence, and perform 4 hours of community service per week while under court supervision. Read the rest of this entry

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