Blog Archives

Family of Jeremy McDole Who Was Killed By Wilmington, Delaware Police Settles for $1.5 Million.

Hat tip to Black Freedom @Freedom4Blks on Twitter for reminding me about this case.  It inspired me to write this follow-up.

On September 26, 2015, I blogged on the shooting of Jeremy McDole in Wilmington, Delaware.  Jeremy was partially paralyzed and in a wheelchair.

Jeremy McDole

A call to 911 reported that Jeremy had wounded himself with a gun. Further investigation found that there was gunshot residue on Jeremy’s hands.  While wounded and confined to his wheelchair, Jeremy was shot by officers 16 times.

The arrival and subsequent actions by four police officers were caught on cell phone video. The video was considered in the investigation into the officers’ use of deadly force.

The video showed Jeremy McDole rubbing his knees as Senior Cpl. Joseph Dellose and three other officers – identified in the report as Senior Cpl. Danny Silva, Cpl. Thomas Lynch and Cpl. James MacColl, moved into the open, without cover.

The investigative report found that Dellose fired at Jeremy  approximately two seconds after initially ordering him to show his hands, creating uncertainty among other officers who, not knowing where the gunfire came from, also turned their weapons on McDole. Read the rest of this entry

Perjury Charge Dismissed Against Officer Who Arrested Sandra Bland

Sandra Bland

On July 10, 2015, Texas Department of Public Safety trooper Brian Encinia stopped Sandra Bland for failure to signal a lane change.  Sandra was 28-years old.  She was in Texas to start a job on August 3, 2015 as a summer program associate with Prairie View A&M University in Waller County, Texas.

Upon returning to Sandra’s car with citations for her to sign, Encinia asked Sandra to put out her cigarette.  When Sandra asked Encinia why she would need to put out her cigarette in her own car, Encinia ordered Sandra out of her car, and taking out his stun gun, threatened to “light” her up if she did not comply.  Encinia accused Sandra of assaulting him and she was taken to jail.

On July 13, 2015, Sandra was found dead in her jail cell.  She was found hung with a plastic trash bag around her neck, from a partition that was shorter or about the same height as Sandra, who was 6 feet tall.

In January 2016, a grand jury indicted Brian Encinia (the arresting officer) for perjury.  The grand jury did not believe Encinia’s statement that he wanted Sandra removed from her car so he could conduct a safer traffic investigation. The Texas Department of Public Safety terminated Encinia for violating department standards. Encina was freed on a $2,500 bond.  If convicted for perjury, he faced up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine.

In March 2016, Brian Encinia was formerly fired from his law enforcement job. Read the rest of this entry

Lawsuit Settles Against Michael Slager for Tasing

Michael Slager, left. Mario Givens, right.

Former North Charleston police officer Michael Slager was charged with murder or voluntary manslaughter in the killing of Walter Scott, an unarmed black man.  Walter Scott was shot in the back 5 times.  Slager’s state trial began on November 3, 2016, with closing arguments on November 30, 2016.  It ended with a hung jury.  Slager is scheduled to be retried by the State of South Carolina, and also by the federal government.  His trial was reported on this blog.

Meanwhile, three men had filed lawsuits against North Charleston for being wrongfully or excessively tased by Michael Slager.  Two have reached settlement.  Mario Givens was awarded $27,500 and Jerome Stanley $50,000 for their 2013 run-ins with Slager.

The Post Courier reports:

“They were among three people who filed actions in 2015 amid intense scrutiny of the city’s police force. An eyewitness video of patrolman Michael Slager shooting the fleeing black man sparked the frenzy.

The men alleged excessive use of the stun gun, though Slager’s lawyers have defended his record as exemplary.”

Mario Givens is quoted as saying,

“If they’d listened to me Walter Scott might not be dead’: Man who filed excessive force complaint after being tasered by ‘killer cop’ in 2013 speaks out – and announces he’s suing.”

Givens was initially charged with resisting arrest, but was later released without charge.  He filed a police complaint but Slager was exonerated. Read the rest of this entry

Baton Rouge Settles Case With Black Lives Matter Protesters

arrests-in-baton-rouge

Activist Deray McKesson arrested in Baton Rouge. AP Photo/Max Becherer

In response to the killing of Alton Sterling on July 5, 2016, Black Lives Matter protesters gathered in the streets of Baton Rouge, Louisiana.   Police arrested 92 protesters.  East Baton Rouge District Attorney Hillar Moore III said his office would not prosecute the protesters.  However, those arrested incurred bond, administrative fees and court costs in order to be released.  To have those arrests expunged requires more money.

Activist DeRay McKesson was among those arrested.

A federal class-action lawsuit was filed alleging that the militarized police were aggressive in their response to protesters and used “unconstitutional tactics” to infringe upon the protesters’ First Amendment rights to freedom of speech and assembly.  Fewer than 10 percent of the protesters in the class-action lawsuit were from out of town. 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

Sandra Bland’s Family Awarded $1.9 Million Settlement

“How did switching lanes with no signal turn into all of this?”

(Question left on a voicemail by Sandra Bland during a call from the jail house.)

On July 10, 2015, Texas Department of Public Safety trooper Brian Encinia stopped Sandra Bland for failure to signal a lane change.  Sandra was 28-years old.  She was in Texas to start a job on August 3, 2015 as a summer program associate with Prairie View A&M University in Waller County, Texas.

sandra-bland-1

Sandra Bland

Upon returning to Sandra’s car with citations for her to sign, Encinia asked Sandra to put out her cigarette.  When Sandra asked Encinia why she would need to put out her cigarette in her own car, Encinia ordered Sandra out of her car, and taking out his stun gun, threatened to “light” her up if she did not comply.  Encinia accused Sandra of assaulting him and she was taken to jail.

On July 13, 2015, Sandra was found dead in her jail cell.  She was found hung with a plastic trash bag around her neck, from a partition that was shorter or about the same height as Sandra, who was 6 feet tall.

In December 2015, a grand jury declined to indict anyone in connection with Sandra’s death.  In January 2016, a grand jury indicted Brian Encinia (the arresting officer) for perjury.  The grand jury did not believe Encinia’s statement that he wanted Sandra removed from her car so he could conduct a safer traffic investigation. The Texas Department of Public Safety terminated Encinia for violating department standards.

Encinia is free on a $2,500 bond.  If convicted, he faces up to a year in jail and a $4,000 fine.

A Tangled Web is Weaved

In August 2015, Sandra’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit.  They demanded investigative records in the case.  A federal judge in Houston set January 23, 2017 for the case to go to trial.

Read the rest of this entry

Hawaii police arrests lesbian couple for kissing, now compensation

I am speechless.

https://youtu.be/Sakb9maBjTQ

Dear Kitty. Some blog

This video says about itself:

Lesbian Couple Files Lawsuit After Hawaii Cop Arrested Them For Kissing

29 October 2015

The Honolulu Police Department opened an internal investigation on Wednesday into allegations that an officer wrongfully arrested a vacationing lesbian couple after seeing them kissing in a grocery store.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV:

Lesbian couple gets $ 80,000 for being arrested for kissing

Today, 21:56

A lesbian couple who were arrested in the US state of Hawaii after a kiss in a supermarket will get a compensation of 80,000 dollars (about 71,000 euros). The women were arrested brutally and were jailed for three days.

With the compensation the municipality of Honolulu, the capital of Hawaii, wants to prevent the case from going to court.

The US American couple were last year on vacation in Hawaii and were shopping at a supermarket in Honolulu. The couple walked hand in…

View original post 283 more words

Tamir Rice – Cleveland Settles Wrongful Death Case For $6 Million

TamirRice_SettlementOn April 25, 2016, the City of Cleveland agreed to pay $6 million to the family of Tamir Rice.  Twelve year old Tamir was killed by officer Timothy Loehmann on November 22, 2014.

This case has been interesting and taken different turns in hopes that were betrayed.  For example, after the prosecutor declined to charge Loehmann, a group of citizens filed affidavits pursuant to Ohio law R.C. 2935.09.  Judge Ronald B. Adrine found that complaints should be filed with the prosecutor for probable cause against Loehmann for murder, involuntary manslaughter, reckless homicide, negligent homicide and dereliction of duty.  Judge Adrine also found that complaints should be filed with prosecutors against Frank Garmback, Loehmann’s partner, for negligent homicide and dereliction of duty.

Prosecutor Tim McGinty took the case before an Ohio grand jury who decided not to indict Loehmann and Garmack.  McGinty called the killing of Tamir Rice a “perfect storm” citing human error, mistakes, and communications by all involved.  McGinty failed to mention communication problems were on the side of dispatch and the officers.

As we reported previously, Cleveland employees, including the dispatchers, have had their share of troubles, including some terminations.  In March of this year, voters let Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty know that they no longer want him in office.  McGinty’s opponent, Michael O’Malley, received more votes in the Democratic primary than McGinty.  Since there is no Republican opponent, O’Malley is expected to take office in January 2017. Read the rest of this entry

Kelly Thomas – No Trial In Wrongful Death Civil Case – Settlement Reached

The jury was selected. Opening statements were scheduled for this morning. However, the City of Fullerton, California reached a settlement, agreeing to pay $4.9 million in the wrongful death lawsuit.

On July 5, 2011, 37-year old Kelly Thomas was living on the streets of Fullerton. Kelly was diagnosed with schizophrenia.

Wikipedia reports;

“On July 5, 2011, at about 8:30 PM, officers of the Fullerton Police Department responded to a call from the management of the Slidebar that someone was vandalizing cars near the Fullerton Transportation Center. While investigating, they encountered the shirtless and disheveled Thomas and attempted to search him. According to statements given by the officers, Thomas was uncooperative and resisted when they attempted to search him. “Now you see my fists?” Fullerton police officer Manny Ramos asked Thomas while slipping on a pair of latex gloves. “Yeah, what about them?” Thomas responded. “They are getting ready to fuck you up,” said Ramos. A video of the event surfaced, and Thomas can be heard repeatedly screaming in pain while officers are heard repeatedly asking him to place his arms behind his back. He audibly responds “Okay, I’m sorry!” and “I’m trying!” while the officers stretch his arm back. The police officers claim that, unable to get Thomas to comply with the requests, they used a taser on him (up to five times- to his scrotum as well, according to a witness statement, and the video footage), and in the video Thomas can be heard screaming “Dad! Dad!” Six officers were involved in subduing Thomas, who was unarmed and had a history of mental illness. Thomas was initially taken to St. Jude Medical Center in Fullerton but was transferred immediately to the UC Irvine Medical Center with severe injuries to his head, face, and neck. One of the paramedics testified that he was first instructed to attend to a police officer’s minor injury and then noticed Thomas lying unconscious in a pool of blood.”

kelly-thomas-before-and-after

Kelly Thomas – Before and After

Tony Rackauckas, the Orange County District Attorney, provided evidence that Thomas did comply with orders from Officer Ramos. A month after Kelly was beaten, six officers were placed on administrative leave. The Fullerton City Council called for the resignation of police Chief Michael Sellers. Sellers was subsequently placed on medical leave in August 2011. He resigned February 18, 2012.

Read the rest of this entry

Verdict Watch – Former Cop William Melendez on Trial

William-Melendez-mugshot-jpg

William Melendez

William “robocop” Melendez is a former police officer for the City of Inkster, Michigan. In January, he made a traffic stop of 58-year old Floyd Dent. Floyd was driving on a suspended license. Dash-cam recorded Melendez dragging Floyd out of his vehicle, beating and choking Floyd while he is restrained by another officer.

Dash-cam video shows Melendez dragging Floyd out of his vehicle, putting him in a choke hold and striking him repeatedly during a traffic stop on January 28, 2015.  While he is restrained, another officer tazes Floyd.

After brutalizing Floyd, he was charged with resisting arrest, assaulting a police office, and drug charges. Floyd claimed that the police planted a bag of crack cocaine in his car during the stop. After seeing the dash-cam video, a judge dismissed the charges of resisting arrest and assaulting a police officer. Prosecutors dropped the drug charges.   The decision to drop the charges came after a lawsuit filed by Floyd was settled for $1.2 million dollars.   At Melendez’s trial, Floyd testified that he has loss of memory due to Melendez’s beating. Read the rest of this entry

The Case of Robert Tolan v. Jeffrey Wayne Cotton

Subtitled: How a police officer making a typographical error resulted in a man having a bullet shot through his lung.

Before the civil case could proceed to trial, it went to the Supreme Court of the United States.  The Supreme Court decided that it should go to trial.  I thought that we would have a trial to follow this week, but trial in this case is not going to happen.

The SCOTUS decision gives us the details.

Robert Tolan

Robert Tolan

In Bellaire, Texas, on December 31, 2008, around 2 a.m., Robert Tolan and his cousin, Anthony Cooper, were in a black Nissan sport utility vehicle. Police officer John Edwards entered the license plate number into a computer in his squad car, but he typed a “5” instead of a “6”. That mistake returned a match for a stolen vehicle of the same color and make of the Tolan vehicle. When that happens, the patrol car’s computer sends an automatic message to other police units.

The house where Robert and his cousin parked was where Robert lives with his parents. They were on the front porch when officer Edwards got out of his cruiser, drew his weapon, and ordered Robert and Anthony to get on the ground. Edwards accused them of having a stolen car. Robert told Edwards it was his car, and he complied with Edwards’ demand to lie face-down.

Hearing the commotion, Robert’s parents came out of the front door in their pajamas. Robert’s father encouraged the two young men to stay face down and say nothing. Officer Edwards told Robert’s parents that Robert and Anthony had stolen the vehicle. Robert’s dad told officer Edwards that Robert is his son, Anthony is his nephew, and that the vehicle belonged to the family. Read the rest of this entry

DOJ Settles With Cleveland Over Police Conduct

The Justice Department has reached a settlement with the city of Cleveland over the conduct of its police officers, according to a Justice official, the latest case in which the Obama administration has investigated excessive use of force and the violation of constitutional rights by a local department.

The settlement, amid the growing national debate about American policing, is expected to be announced early this week, the official said. It comes just days after a judge acquitted a Cleveland police officer for his role in the fatal shooting of two unarmed people in a car in 2012 after officers thought the sound of the car backfiring was gunshots.

The Justice Department in December issued a scathing report that accused the Cleveland Police Department of illegally using deadly force against citizens. The Justice Department’s civil rights division found that the Cleveland police engaged in a “pattern or practice” of unnecessary force — including shooting residents, striking them in the head and spraying them with chemicals.

In one incident, an officer used a stun gun on “a suicidal, deaf man who committed no crime, posed minimal risk to officers and may not have understood officers’ commands.”

The police were also accused of repeatedly punching in the face a handcuffed 13-year-old boy who had been arrested for shoplifting.

The Cleveland report was released the month after a 12-year-old African American boy, Tamir Rice, was fatally shot by a white Cleveland police officer. Cleveland officers had responded to a 911 call that reported a person pointing a gun. It turned out to be a toy pistol.

A Justice Department spokeswoman would not comment on the settlement, which was first reported on the Web site of the New York Times.

When last year’s report about Cleveland was released, then-Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. traveled to the city to announce the findings and said the Justice Department and the city had agreed to establish an independent monitor who would oversee police reforms. The changes will include better training and better supervision of officers, Holder said.

There have been more than 20 investigation by the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division in the past 5 years. The investigations have resulted in 15 agreements with law enforcement agencies, including New Orleans and Albuquerque.  The Justice Department recently opened an investigation of the Baltimore police department.

UPDATE

Here is the consent decree that the Cleveland police department entered into with the government.

———————————————————————

On a separate matter, I will be off and on today — probably offline more than on.  Tomorrow, I might reblog some articles and unless something comes up that is really interesting, that might be the case for several days until I catch-up on some personal matters and begin feeling better.

Remember to keep the Golden Rule. 

$2.25 Million to the Family of Jonathan Ferrell

The City of Charlotte, North Carolina, has agreed to a settlement with the family of Jonathan Ferrell.

1gqQkE.So.138

Jonathan Ferrell

Jonathan, a 24-year-old former football player at Florida A&M University, wrecked his Toyota Camry in a subdivision northwest of Charlotte sometime after 2 a.m. on Sept. 14, 2013. It is presumed that he went looking for help, as a woman called 911 and reported that someone was knocking and kicking on her door. Jonathan walked away from the house back to his car, and three officers showed up. One officer, Randall Kerrick, pulled his gun and fired 12 shots, 10 of which hit Ferrell. Most recently reported is that the other two officers, both Black, did not draw their weapons.

Georgia Ferrell, Jonathan’s mother, said that the family will now turn their attention to the voluntary manslaughter trial of officer Randall Kerrick. It is scheduled to being July 20, 2015. Read the rest of this entry

Yahnick Martin Receives $50K Settlement After NYPD Conducted Stop-And-Frisk and Ruined His Christmas

Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

GOOD BLACK NEWS

Yahnick Martin (pictured) got sweet reparation from the New York City Police Department after they  mistakenly slapped him with cuffs, hauled him off to jail, and had him leave his gift-filled van unattended and running on a Brooklyn street back in 2011. Now the city Law Department is reportedly forking over $50,000 to settle a federal lawsuit he filed against “New York’s finest” because the van and all of its gifts were stolen, ruining his family’s Christmas, according to the New York Daily News.

On December 23, 2011, Martin was reportedly sitting in a rented van waiting for his wife, who had dropped off a Christmas present to a friend. Martin, a real estate agent and father of three, was  smoking a cigar in his van when Officer Roman Goris and a few colleagues pulled up to his vehicle.  The “Men in Blue” claimed they smelled marijuana wafting in the air.

Goris asked Martin to exit the vehicle and patted…

View original post 176 more words

Deceased Ebola victim’s family reaches a settlement with Dallas hospital

Marlene Pinnock, Woman Beaten by California Highway Patrolman, Settles for $1.5 Million

Just goes to prove that law enforcement doesn’t have to drag out settlements for years and years, especially when there is video that is plain and clear of police abuse. 

GOOD BLACK NEWS

pinnock_zps1d313f5a

Marlene Pinnock, the 51-year-old woman punched repeatedly by California Highway Patrol officer Daniel Andrew on the side of a freeway in an incident caught on video, will receive $1.5 million under a settlement reached Wednesday night, and the officer has agreed to resign.

On July 1, a passing driver captured video of Pinnock being repeatedly pummeled by Andrew, and she filed suit in August.

marlenepinnock_zps31e51969The Associated Press reports that Pinnock and the CHP reached an agreement after a lengthy mediation.

“When this incident occurred, I promised that I would look into it and vowed a swift resolution,” CHP Commissioner John Farrow said in a statement. “Today, we have worked constructively to reach a settlement agreement that is satisfactory to all parties involved.”

The statement said that Officer Andrew, who joined the CHP in 2012 and has been on paid administrative leave since the incident, “has elected to resign.”

Andrew…

View original post 121 more words

5 Exonerated in Central Park Jogger Case Agree to Settle Suit for $40 Million

Such an injustice and ruining of young lives.

GOOD BLACK NEWS

20settle-01-JP-articleLarge-v2 Lawyers, in foreground, and the five defendants in the Central Park rape case of a female jogger waiting for the ruling in February 1990 in State Supreme Court in Manhattan. (JAMES ESTRIN / THE NEW YORK TIMES)

The five men whose convictions in the brutal 1989 beating and rape of a female jogger in Central Park were later overturned have agreed to a settlement of about $40 million from New York City to resolve a bitterly fought civil rights lawsuit over their arrests and imprisonment in the sensational crime.

The agreement, reached between the city’s Law Department and the five plaintiffs, would bring to an end an extraordinary legal battle over a crime that came to symbolize a sense of lawlessness in New York, amid reports of “wilding” youths and a marauding “wolf pack” that set its sights on a 28-year-old investment banker who ran in the park many evenings…

View original post 1,108 more words

Civil Lawsuits Against Michael Dunn Settled

Congratulations to the parents of Jordan Davis and others who were in the vehicle with Jordan when Michael Dunn opened fire. 

JordanDavis-MichaelDunn-jpg

Jordan Davis                                                                           Michael Dunn

Blackbutterfly7 extends our thanks to John Phillips for his statement on this matter.  It dispels the misrepresentation by some who omitted the word “stipulation” when saying that the civil lawsuit against Michael Dunn was dismissed.  Read the rest of this entry

%d bloggers like this: