Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Man tried to smuggle meth to Japan as Snickers bars, feds say www.privateofficer.com

Los Angeles CA July 31 2012 A Long Beach man has been charged by federal authorities with trying to smuggle more than four pounds of methamphetamine from Los Angeles to Japan in what looked like Snickers bars, officials said Monday.

Rogelio Mauricio Harris, 34, was arrested at Los Angeles International Airport on Friday by special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations while preparing to board a flight to Japan.

Harris faces a charge of possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute. If convicted, he faces at least 10 years in prison and a possible maximum sentence penalty of life in prison. The case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.

The agents were conducting routine baggage inspections when they noticed a large box labeled as Snickers bars inside Harris’ checked luggage and discovered 45 individually wrapped, full-sized "candy bars."

Each “was coated in a chocolate-like substance to make the contents of the package appear to be a real candy bar," officials said. Agents tested the bars and found they contained "a white, crystalline substance" determined to be methamphetamine, the agency said in a statement.

All told, the contraband candies contained four pounds of methamphetamine with a street value of about $250,000 in Japan, the agency said.

Source:LA Now

Makeshift meth lab forces evacuation of Center City hotel www.privateofficer.com

Philadelphia PA July 31 2012
Hundreds of tourists were rousted from their Center City hotel rooms Saturday morning when a dangerous makeshift methamphetamine lab set off a fire alarm.

At least 300 guests were evacuated from the Hampton Inn at 1301 Race St. about 5:30 a.m. as first Philadelphia firefighters, then the Police Department's homeland security and terrorism unit arrived to handle the volatile chemicals left behind by a would-be meth-maker.

Investigators discovered in a third-floor room the chemicals and materials used in the "one-pot" or "shake-and-bake" method of producing the dangerous, highly addictive stimulant.

The procedure can result in toxic fumes and explosions, leave behind a dangerous trail of chemicals, and render the room uninhabitable

Joe Sullivan, chief of the Homeland Security unit, said a 26-year-old Philadelphia-area man who rented the room Friday night was in custody and would probably be charged. The narcotics unit is seeking a second suspect, he said.

Most guests were provided shelter in the neighboring Convention Center, Sullivan said, and were able to return to their rooms by about 8 a.m., with the exception of seven rooms kept vacant for the difficult and expensive cleanup.

The hotel has 250 rooms and was about 60 percent full Friday night, a hotel worker said.

Hotels and motels are increasingly used by meth-makers because the chemicals used - which can include lighter fuel, lye, lithium, and acetone, among other dangerous substances - seep into fabrics, furniture, and floors, according the Department of Justice website.

"It's popular to do this," Sullivan said. "You basically destroy someone's hotel room, and then you leave."

The single-pot method uses a combination of chemicals shaken up in a plastic bottle, with explosions sometimes resulting.

Professional cleaners are required to make the room safe. In this case, the hotel and the city Department of Licenses and Inspections will oversee the cleaning, authorities said.

Some of the guests were out-of-town firefighters, in town for the International Association of Firefighters convention, which ended Thursday, Sullivan said.

"Certainly, it is really disturbing that this is the experience they have in Philadelphia," Sullivan said. "The actions caused a lot of damage, and not all of it is tangible, but it's serious nonetheless."

Had authorities not found out about the lab and the men conducted their business without detection, the chemical residues would have endangered any subsequent guests, especially children, according to Sullivan.

"Thank God we're aware of what occurred in there," he said. "This is a very serious matter that had very serious implications for the future."


Church security officer finds burglar hiding in closet www.privateofficer.com

Fort Lauderdaqle Fla July 31 2012 Joshua T. King was at church on Sunday but not for the right reasons.

The 25-year-old man was arrested Sunday morning after he was found inside a closet at First Baptist Church at 301 E. Broward Blvd. in Fort Lauderdale.

King is facing one charge of burglary in an occupied dwelling after a security guard unlocked a storage room and found him there. He was found with multiple driver licenses in his name: two from Florida and four from New York.

During Sunday School while children were in the playground area, teachers asked the security guard to unlock the storage closet and retrieve toys for them, the arrest report states.

"When he unlocked the door, he could smell and see urine in the basket on the kids' tricycle," the report states.

The security guard said he then noticed King was hiding behind props and toys "in an attempt to conceal himself."

The students and teachers were evacuated.

According to the report, King was in the closet "hiding from people" when he felt the need to go to the restroom. Because he did not want to leave the room, he urinated in the tricycle basket.

He was also found with a pair of scissors he said he was going to use to cut his clothes.

During Monday's bond court hearing, King was adamant about not paying the bond amount set at $5,000.

"I'm not paying the $5,000 fine, that's outrageous," King said. "It has nothing to do with me."

Broward County Judge John "Jay" Hurley lowered his bond amount to $3,500.

In an exchange with Hurley, King maintained his innocence.

"I didn't break in, the door was open," King said.

"Clearly he doesn't know the elements to burglary," Hurley said in response.

King is being held at Broward County's Main Jail.


Mother of slain Va. inmate claims guard conspiracy www.privateofficer.com

RICHMOND, Va. July 31 2012(AP) - Guards and security officials at Virginia's most secure prison conspired with an inmate to give him the opportunity to kill another prisoner, the slain man's mother claims in a lawsuit.

Aaron Cooper, 26, was killed on July 28, 2010, when Robert Gleason strangled him through a separate cage on the recreation yard at the supermax Red Onion State Prison. Gleason, who was serving a life sentence for a 2007 slaying and had killed his cellmate in 2009, had vowed before Cooper's death to keep killing unless he was sentenced to death. Gleason received the death sentence last year.

Kim Strickland claims in a federal lawsuit filed late Friday that Gleason traded favors with prison guards in order to arrange her son's slaying. It accuses prison guards and security officers of not doing required searches, of allowing Gleason to determine which inmates were allowed out that day and where they were positioned, and of arranging for in-person and video monitoring stations to be abandoned.

The lawsuit accuses 19 individuals, from Department of Corrections Director Harold W. Clarke and warden Tracy Ray to several prison guards and investigators, of acts and policies that were "shocking to the conscience of civilized persons and intolerable in a society governed by laws and due process."

In an interview from death row on Monday, Gleason said those named in the lawsuit did not know his intentions to kill Cooper. But he said they put him in a position to do so.

"There's no way in the world if they would have done their job that I could have killed him," Gleason said. "They ignored all of these warnings. All of them."

In addition to the threats - both in court and in interviews with the AP -to continue killing if not given the death penalty, another inmate testified at Gleason's sentencing in September that he warned institutional investigators on two occasions that something was going to happen on the recreation yard. Inmates are held in isolation 23 hours a day at the prison, and inmates are held in individual cages in the recreation yard.

Gleason arranged for another inmate to make a braided necklace that could be used as a noose. The lawsuit claims he conspired with four guards to orchestrate a recreation time without the required search so that he could sneak the noose onto the yard. He also told them which inmates to put into the other adjoining cages and to place Cooper next to him. Gleason then conspired with the chief of security and five other officers to "create the absences necessary for no officer to view or enter the rec yard during Gleason's project," the lawsuit claims.

Gleason told Cooper, who was serving 34 years for robbery and carjacking, that he needed his help to measure a religious necklace. Cooper put his back to Gleason in the cage, wrapped the necklace around his neck and gave the other end to Gleason, who put one foot onto the cage and pulled to strangle Cooper. One hour and 14 minutes after Cooper was put into the cage beside Gleason, two officers returned to find him dead.

The lawsuit also claims the security officers falsified a required head count that was to be done while the inmates were on the recreation yard. Prison records falsely show everyone was accounted for at 1:28 p.m., but video surveillance shows that no officers returned to the yard until 1:43 p.m., when Cooper was found dead.

The lawsuit was filed by Abingdon attorney Mary Lynn Tate, who did not immediately return a message seeking further comment.

Virginia Department of Corrections spokesman Larry Traylor said the agency does not comment on pending litigation. He did not immediately answer questions on whether any of those named in the lawsuit had been reprimanded. A spokesman for the Attorney General's Office said he had not seen the lawsuit.

Strickland said Monday she hoped to see the prison system held accountable.

"Finally my son's going to see some justice," she said


Meth lab explodes in guest room at Holiday Inn www.privateofficer.com

PEABODY, Mass.July 31 2012 - Police evacuated the Holiday Inn on Route 1 in Peabody late Sunday night, after discovering a possible drug lab for making crystal methamphetamine.

Police were forced to order about 200 people out of the hotel.

Peabody police said a hotel security guard noticed smoke coming from a room which led to the discovery of a large amount of "dangerous" chemicals.

"The security officers reported that they saw a large amount of chemicals in the room, which was highly unusual,” said Peabody Police Capt. Dennis Bonaiuto.

Some hotel guests said they heard and felt the explosion.

"We were just watching TV and all of a sudden there was this loud pop, and I actually was alarmed by it," said hotel guest Jillian Hahn.

After several hours, hotel guests were allowed to return to their rooms.

Bomaiuto said there was no one in the room after the explosion but that the person who checked-in, had done so just hours earlier. Police were trying to figure out if the name used to check-in was legitimate.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms are assisting in the investigation.


7-year-old boy forced to smoke pot at gunpoint www.privateofficer.com

SANTA ROSA BEACH, Fla.July 31 2012 -- Sheriff's deputies say a McDonough man is accused of hitting his wife and forcing a 7-year-old boy to smoke pot at gunpoint.

The Northwest Daily News reports 26-year-old Justin Blake Mitchell is being held at the Walton County Jail without bond since the July 12 incident.

According to arrest reports, Mitchell pointed a gun at the child and threatened to shoot him if he didn't smoke marijuana. Authorities say he pointed the gun at his wife's head and threatened to kill her. He's also accused of robbing his wife of cash and personal property.

In addition, deputies say Mitchell is accused of stealing a man's debit card and robbing another woman of personal property.

He faces multiple charges. No attorney was listed on jail records.

Jacksonville police still investigating security officer shooting www.privateofficer.com

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. July 31 2012

Police in Jacksonville are still investigating a shooting that left one man in critical condition and two others shot.
The three men were shot outside a Jacksonville gentleman's club by a security guard who says he was acting in self-defense.

It started with a fight between bouncers and clubgoers at Wacko's Gentleman's Club early Sunday.

The security guard, Jarod Chemay, was patrolling the shopping center where the club is located and says he shot at the pickup truck because the driver was trying to run him over.

Jail records indicate Chemay has not been charged with any crime but police say that he could if he used unreasonable deadly force.

Small fire quickly contained at Gwinnett Medical Center www.privateofficer.com

DULUTH, Ga. July 31 2012-- A fire that occurred at Gwinnett Medical Center-Duluth on Saturday was contained to the laundry area, although smoke was reported in the kitchen area.

The Gwinnett Daily Post reports that Gwinnett County Fire officials responded to the call within five minutes.

A hospital spokeswoman said the fire was contained quickly due to an effective sprinkler system and hospital employees who used four fire extinguishers.

Workers who helped keep the fire from spreading were evaluated in the emergency room and are in good condition. One employee was reportedly admitted for observation.


Gulfport radio DJ arrested for sexual exploitation of children www.privateofficer.com

GULFPORT, MS July 31 2012 - Coast Radio Group terminated Robert Dever, 50, of Gulfport on Saturday, according to Coast Radio Group Operation's Manager Bryan Rhodes.

On Saturday, Dever was arrested and charged with misdemeanor malicious mischief and felony sexual exploitation of children.

According to the Coast Radio Group's website, Dever was the midday announcer on Kicker 108 as Bob Dever. He was also an announcer on Z-95 FM as 'Jay Roberts.'

Dever's arrest was the result of a joint investigation conducted by members of the ICAC (Internet Crimes Against Children) Task Force, the Biloxi Police Department and the Gulfport Police Department.

During the investigation, it was discovered that Dever had posted a note on the wall of the bathroom at a park in Biloxi asking that individuals who had an interest in sharing children for sex contact him.

That posting lead to the misdemeanor malicious mischief charge and also lead to an undercover internet investigation which identified Dever as being the person making the posting.

The investigation also lead to the execution of a search warrant at Dever's residence where investigators recovered numerous images of children engaging in sexually explicit activities.

Those discoveries lead to the felony sexual exploitation of children charge.

After his arrest, Dever was incarcerated in the Harrison County Adult Detention Center pending a Biloxi Municipal Court bond of $300.00 for malicious mischief and a Harrison County bond of $50,000.00 for the sexual exploitation of children.

Harrison County Justice Court Judge Bruce Strong set the bond on the felony.

Dever was arrested in the 1200 block of Mill Road in Gulfport.


Las Vegas police make arrest in stabbing at House of Blues www.privateofficer.com

LAS VEGAS NV July 31 2012 -- Metro police have a suspect in custody following a stabbing at Mandalay Bay's House of Blues on Saturday night.

Police say the stabbing happened when a fight broke out during the Tenacious D concert around 9:30 p.m. One person was stabbed in the leg and taken to the hospital, but they are expected to recover.

The stabbing forced police to clear the House of Blues and cancel the remainder of the Tenacious D concert, as well as the following Steel Panther event. The House of Blues was closed for the rest of the night.

One person is under arrest and police say they are not searching for other suspects.

Wilmington NC police benefit from area filmmaking www.privateofficer.com

WILMINGTON, N.C. July 31 2012-- The last time Wilmington police officer Mark Anderson saw a movie in a theater, he watched John Travolta in “Wild Hogs” in 2007. Before that, he saw Tom Hanks in “Saving Private Ryan.”

These days, Anderson is becoming a big movie fan without buying popcorn and huge sodas. The StarNews of Wilmington reports that filmmaking in the Cape Fear region puts dozens of law enforcement officers and fire crews to work directing traffic, providing security and ensuring residents' safety during stunts.

“I'm not falling over myself trying to meet stars. For the most part, I don't have a ton of interaction with the stars. That's not why I do it,” said Anderson, a 51-year-old retired U.S. Marine. “I make my mom's and my house payments and these contracts help pay for that.”

Wilmington Police Chief Ralph Evangelous said the extra work allows his department to increase its footprint in the community without costing taxpayers.

“Any of the contracts they work, whether it's security for a business or traffic control for an event, are high visibility. And the officers are still having to abide by all of our rules and regulations.” Evangelous said.

Although Anderson and other local police officers volunteer for a variety of lucrative off-duty assignments, including security work with retailers such as Walmart, the film and TV production contracts are his favorite.

“Movies are the best contracts to work,” Anderson said. “You're part of the team, and these guys make you feel at home.”


Former Army recruiter sentenced to three life sentences for murders of mother and sons www.privateofficer.com

MANCHESTER, Tenn. July 31 2012 (AP) - A former Army recruiter has been sentenced to three life sentences without the possibility of parole in the deaths of a Manchester mother and her two young sons.

Matthew Perkins pleaded guilty Monday to murder charges for the September 2010 deaths of Stephanie Hershman and her sons, 3-year-old Jathan and 1-year-old Jaylon.

Prosecutors had been seeking the death penalty, but the district attorney general's office said in a statement that they accepted the plea agreement based on uncertainties about whether a jury would unanimously impose the death penalty.

Prosecutors said the victims' family members approved the plea agreement.

Investigators have said they found the three bodies stuffed in trash bags inside a bedroom closet of Hershman's home.


9 People arrested for assaulting Orlando officers working at nightclub www.privateofficer.com

ORLANDO, Fla. July 31 2012(AP) — Nine people have been arrested for assaulting two off-duty Orlando police officers who were working security for a club.

The arrests happened early Sunday after a group of woman tried to get back in the club without paying. Police say a group of men leaving the club added to the disturbance.

The Orlando Sentinel reports (http://bit.ly/PYs1mF ) both officers were working the security detail in police uniform when they were punched in the face during a scuffle. One officer said he felt "tugs" on his gun holster and baton.

Four people are charged with battery on a law-enforcement officer. Five others are charged with resisting arrest and disorderly conduct. One of them is also charged with depriving an officer of means to communicate for ripping the officer's radio from his belt.

Currituck County High School teacher arrested on sex charges www.privateofficer.com

CURRITUCK COUNTY, N.C. July 31 2012 - Authorities confirmed today that a Currituck County High School teacher has been arrested for being sexually involved with several male students.
A  Grand Jury indicted Christina Corbo, 44, on five counts of sexual activity by a custodian. She was arrested on the 27th and released on a $10,000 secured bond.

The investigation began on June 8, 2012, when someone from the Currituck County school system contacted the Sheriff's Office to report the alleged crime. Detectives immediately began looking into the case.

Because of the nature of this investigation, no additional information will be released by the Sheriff's Office, according to spokeswoman Lindsay Voorhees.

According to her faculty page, Corbo has taught at the school for four years. She previously taught at Moyock Middle School and Camden County High School.

The school system is not commenting on the arrest.

Two women charged with Sears shoplifting scam www.privateofficer.com

BOYNTON BEACH, Fla.July 31 2012 - Two women are behind bars after they are arrested for stealing about $1,200.00 worth of merchandise from Sears around 4 p.m., Saturday.

Boynton Beach Police say Taylor Thomas and Anna Banks fought with the people who approached them outside of the store located on the 800-block of North Congress Avenue at The Boynton Beach Mall.

One of the women managed to get away, but was located by police on North Congress Avenue, shortly after.

The two face a Strong-arm Robbery charge.

Former BISD employee and wife charged with felony theft www.privateofficer.com

Beaumont TX July 31 2012 A BISD employee who was fired in May turned himself into authorities, according to a Jefferson County Correctional Facility personnel.

Daryl Johnson, 42, a former warehouse maintenance supervisor, was charged with two counts of felony theft on $10,000 and $20,000 bonds.

He turned himself into authorities last Friday and bonded out the same day, according to the Jefferson County Correctional Facility.

His wife Erin Johnson, 34, also turned herself in the same day and bonded out, according to the jail personnel. She was charged with one felony count of theft on a $20,000 bond.

Beaumont ISD detective Danny Moore confirms that Johnson was investigated for theft for approximately $280,000.

The district released a statement in May that Johnson, who was not named at the time, was fired because he appeared to have paid wages to two persons who did not work for the district.


Tennessee Titans football player commits suicide www.privateofficer.com

NASHVILLE, TN July 31 2012 - A Tennessee Titans football player killed himself Monday morning outside the high school where he graduated from in Tampa, FL, according to local police.

Officers discovered wide receiver Orenthal James Murdock, 25, about 8:30 a.m. in his car in front of Middleton High School in Tampa with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Murdock was taken to Tampa General Hospital in critical condition but was pronounced dead at 10:43 a.m., Tampa police said.

Murdock was signed by the Titans in July 2011. However, he was on injured reserve after hurting his right foot during training camp, according to the team's website.

Murdock was listed on the team's "did not report list," according to WSMV Sports Director Rudy Kalis.

Below is a statement released by the Titans:

"We are shocked and saddened to hear of Orenthal James Murdock's death this morning. In his brief time here, a number of our players, coaches and staff had grown close to O.J., and this is a difficult time for them. He spent the last year battling back from an Achilles injury as he prepared for this year's training camp. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends as they try to cope with this tragedy."


Former Wood River City employee sentenced to three years in prison for embezzlement www.privateofficer.com

EDWARDSVILLE IL July 31 2012 - A former Wood River employee charged with stealing from city coffers has been sentenced to three years in prison and is being required to pay back the money she stole.

Leslie E. Dona, 42, was charged on Sept. 21, 2011, for stealing approximately $143,000 since 2007 by altering software, fund and report manipulation and destroying records. Her theft came to light after she failed to report to work on Aug. 15, 2011, which led to a missing persons report being filed. Three days later, she was located in Eureka, Mo.

Dona had been scheduled to meet with local auditors who were conducting the city's annual audit before she failed to show up for work.

Following investigation by the City of Wood River and its Police Department, the theft by Dona was discovered, which led to charges being filed by the State's Attorney's Office.

Dona pleaded guilty today to theft by deception, a Class 2 Felony. In addition to receiving a three-year prison sentence, Dona is also being required to compensate the city for the funds that she stole.

State's Attorney Tom Gibbons, who personally handled the case, secured Dona's Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund pension, both her contributions and the city's contribution, to be used toward restitution.

Gibbons said that in discussions with IMRF, they told him they couldn't recall prosecutors ever having been successful at taking a pension for repayment for a crime.

"Our citizens deserve the very best from their public employees, and I have made it a priority of my administration to hold individuals who work for the public to the highest standards," Gibbons said in a statement. "Holding the defendant accountable for her crimes by sending her to prison and taking every last penny from her sends the strongest message to other would-be thieves that this will not be tolerated in Madison County. Leslie Dona betrayed the public's trust so we're taking away her public pension."

In addition to her IMRF pension, valued at approximate, $30,555, prosecutors also seized money from a 457 investment account, funds from multiple bank accounts and CDs and money that her insurance company sent her following a car crash that occurred after she was located in Missouri. All of Dona's accounts and pensions were frozen immediately following her arrest and totaled almost $55,000.

The City of Wood River has also received another $50,000 through an insurance policy they had for situations such as the theft. Dona will still have to pay the remaining funds owed to the city following her release from the Illinois Department of Corrections. Dona has been in custody since being charged last September.

"I want to thank Chief Otis Steward, the investigators from the Wood River Police Department, and the Finance Department and City Attorney and for their outstanding work on this case," said Gibbons. "Their exceptional efforts have now resulted in a successful prosecution and substantial recovery of the stolen proceeds, which will now be returned to the citizens of Wood River."


Anderson County Sheriff's investigator charged with being drunk at Kroger store www.privateofficer.com

KNOXVILLE TN July 31 2012 - An Anderson County Sheriff's Office investigator accused of carrying a loaded gun while drunk was arrested July 25 in Knoxville.

Danny Edward Bowie, of Andersonville, was taken into custody in the parking lot of Kroger on Clinton Highway. He's charged with public intoxication and handgun possession while drunk or on a controlled substance.

According to a court affidavit, an officer who responded to a public intoxication complaint saw Bowie walking unsteadily in the parking lot. He also allegedly had bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and smelled of alcohol.

The affidavit says the officer saw the butt of a weapon in the rear pocket of Bowie's shorts when he asked to see his ID. The gun turned out to be a Springfield Armory XP40. It was loaded with nine rounds and one in the chamber.

Bowie was booked into the Knox County Jail on a $200 bond. He's scheduled to be in court on August 2.


Mother-sister shoplifters abandon 1-year-old son during escape www.privateofficer.com

Ocala Fla July 31 2012

A 19-year-old mother is wanted not only for what police say she and her sister tried to take from a Walmart store, but also for what she left behind — her 1-year-old son.

According to the Ocala Police Department, Allison Nicole Niemeyer and her sister Laura Niemeyer, 22, are wanted for felony child neglect and retail petit theft. Laura Niemeyer is also wanted for resisting a merchant.

Ocala police provided the following account of the case:

At 1:45 p.m. Friday, Officer Melissa Buetti went to the Walmart at 4980 E. Silver Springs Blvd. in response to a call about a retail theft and an abandoned child.

A Walmart loss prevention officer told Buetti that Allison Niemeyer and her sister had put clothes in the baby's diaper bag. As they left the store, the loss prevention officer stopped them and asked them to come back inside.

The child's mother immediately ran, leaving the boy behind with his aunt, who soon broke free from the employee and also ran away. The two sisters were picked up in the parking lot by a blue Ford Aerostar van, which headed west, police said.

Aside from the baby, officials recovered $57.12 worth of merchandise — four women's shirts, a bathing suit and men's white undershirts.

Police contacted the Department of Children and Families, which has taken custody of the child.

Authorities say Allison Niemeyer is on house arrest until 2021 in connection with a home invasion robbery with a firearm. She was pregnant when that crime occurred, authorities said.

In the October 2010 robbery, five teenagers were accused of committing a home invasion on Northeast 37th Place Road in which a 61-year-old man was pistol-whipped by one of the robbers. Authorities said Allison Niemeyer, whose boyfriend was in the group, was the getaway driver.

Her sister, Laura Niemeyer, has three previous convictions for retail theft, as well as convictions for grand theft and uttering a forged instrument, according to court records.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of the sisters can call the Ocala Police Department at 369-7000, Crime Line at 369-7061 or Crime Stoppers at 368-STOP, or visit www.ocalacrimestoppers.com. Tipsters can also text the word “ocalapd” and the tip to TIP411.


Ohio woman arrested for trying to break into jail www.privateofficer.com

HAMILTON, Ohio July 31 2012 (AP) - Police in southwest Ohio are perplexed about why a woman tried to sneak into a county jail before telling authorities to arrest her.

Deputies with the Butler County Sheriff's Office arrested 36-year-old Tiffany R. Hurd when she was caught trying to climb over a fence into Butler County Jail in Hamilton, near Cincinnati.

The Sunday morning arrest came after jail staff told Hurd to leave the property, but she told them to arrest her.

Deputies then repeatedly asked Hurd to leave, but she refused and attempted to climb the fence again. Deputies say was intoxicated.

Hurd was arrested on misdemeanor charges of criminal trespassing and disorderly conduct. She is now at the county jail.

Hurd's bond has been set at $2,500. Her attorney did not immediately return a message Monday.

LAPD officer given jail in thefts at Surf and Sand www.privateofficer.com

Los Angeles CA July 31 2012 A veteran Los Angeles Police Department officer who moonlighted as a Surf and Sand security guard was sentenced today to jail and probation after copping to repeatedly stealing cash from the tony Laguna Beach resort.

Through a court deal, Jeffry Paul Quinton, pleaded guilty to two felonies and Judge Robert R. Fitzgerald sentenced the Anaheim Hills 47-year-old to 120 days behind bars and three years probation.

Prosecutors thought Quinton should remain in custody for a year, according to a statement from the Orange County District Attorney's office. The maximum penalty for the felonies the cop pleaded guilty to--grand theft and commercial burglary--is more than three years in prison.

On Oct. 17, 2011, staff at the Surf and Sand, where rooms can go for more than $500 a night, recovered $2,000 from a hotel room, secured the money in a hotel safe and detailed the discovery on the resort's online "lost and found" logging system. Quinton had access to that electronic system, and the next day he changed the log to indicate the "$2,000" was instead a "gold watch," that it was recovered from a different room number and that the watch had been returned to its owner. He then stole $960 out of the safe.

The cop was not done giving himself unauthorized bonuses. On Dec. 26, 2011, he used tape to cover the surveillance camera lens in the security office for several minutes as he stole $680 out of a safe deposit box there. Then, this past Jan. 24, Quinton disappeared from his shift for more than an hour as he ferried $290 in stolen bedding from a locked hotel storage room to his car.

The Laguna Beach Police Department investigated the final theft, reviewing surveillance video to discover the crime. Further probing uncovered the other thefts. A 21-year LAPD veteran, Quinton's been on paid administrative leave since his arrest.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Lesbian couple confesses to torture, murder of college student www.privateofficer.com

Cochranton PA July 30 2012 A lesbian couple admitted to luring one of the women’s former lovers into the woods, beating her and strangling her, and finally burying her in a shallow grave as she took her last breaths.

Pennsylvania prosecutors are weighing whether to seek the death penalty for Jade Olmstead and Ashley Barber, the Erie Times-News reported.

Their victim, Olmstead’s 20-year-old ex Brandy Stevens, suffocated on the dirt they shoveled into the grave they’d dug in advance of the horrific crime, autopsy results showed.

On May 17, the two women told police, Olmstead convinced Stevens to come see a fort she was building in the woods outside their home near Cochranton.

Barber, Olmstead’s new girlfriend, was lying in wait at the scene. They savagely beat Stevens, stuffing a cap into her mouth because “they were freaking out from her screams,” state police Trooper Eric Mallory testified.

Barber strangled Stevens with a rope as Olmstead continued to bludgeon her, and head-butted her so hard that she bruised her own forehead.

Olmstead and Barber rolled Stevens into the makeshift grave, they said. When they saw that she was still breathing, they slammed a rock into her face and poured water into her nose and mouth before piling on the dirt that eventually killed her.

Both women face charges of homicide and conspiracy to commit homicide, as well as evidence tampering for burning some of Stevens’ belongings and their own blood-soaked clothes, according to the Times-News.

Crawford County District Attorney Francis Schultz will determine if he will pursue the death penalty before their Aug. 24 arraignment.


San Antonio security officer captures armed robbery suspect www.privateofficer.com

SAN ANTONIO TX July 30 2012 -- Police say that a fast acting apartment security officer prevented the escape of a man who had shot a 30-year-old man during a robbery attempt.
The man is fighting for his life after he was shot in the stomach for refusing to hand over his laptop.

The victim was near his car outside the Oaks on Bandera apartments, in the 1200 block of Bandera Road, when he was approached a man with a gun around 2:30 a.m., San Antonio police said.

The victim refused to give the gunman his laptop and was shot in the abdomen following a brief struggle, police said.

The suspect than tried running away but was quickly caught by the apartment's security guard.
The security officer was able to take the man into custody until police could arrive.

The victim was taken to University Hospital in critical condition.

Georgia police searching for hair extensions thief www.privateofficer.com

ROSWELL, Ga. July 30 2012-- Roswell police are searching for the culprits who stole $15,000 in hair extensions from a beauty store.

Mike Petchenik, the owner of PD&K Beauty Supply, told WSB-TV ( http://bit.ly/OvshqY) that thieves threw bricks through the front door of his store Friday and took a supply of human hair extensions. He estimates the theft took about 10 seconds.

He now plans to install security cameras and reinforced glass to deter future break-ins.

Roswell police said they have no suspects but are investigating whether the theft may be related to two similar crimes at a Sandy Springs store.

Disorderly person arrested at Hollywood Casino at Penn National Racetrack www.privateofficer.com

Dauphin County PA July 30 2012

A 28-year-old Elizabethtown man was charged with criminal trespass and disorderly conduct after an incident at the Hollywood Casino at Penn National Racetrack early Sunday.
State police at Penn National said security officers asked Phillip Lee Kiser to leave the casino around 1:25 a.m. after he showed signs of being intoxicated.
Kiser refused to leave.
State police were contacted and upon meeting with Kiser, he again refused to leave and became combative upon being arrested, police said.

Security officer faces more surgeries after violent attack www.privateofficer.com

LANDOVER, Md.July 30 2012 - Stephanie Minor, owner of the "It's A Family Affair Childcare Center" in Landover says she'll never forget the sight of a crazed man with a baseball bat, smashing her office window and cornering her back in April.

She prepared to take her last breath, but thanks to 19 year old security guard Jalen Farmer she survived.

"With blood streaming from one eye and blind, and glass in another, he never retreated. He kept putting himself in harm's way, to serve as bait or a decoy so the attacker would be focused and isolated at the front of the daycare center until help arrived, "Minor says.

While Minor and others called 911 for help, Farmer kept taking blows from the suspect identified as 26 year old Mickel Tyrone Young. Young eventually grabbed an employee's car keys and fled.

Farmer lost the sight in his right eye during the vicious attack. A gash above his left eye needed 20 stitches to close , and he has numerous other facial fractures and injuries.

He says he never thought about backing down.

"No, I didn't, " Farmer says. " I did what any responsible person would have, I did my job. My job was to protect everyone at the daycare center."

Eighty kids and 20 staff members were inside at the time.

His mother, Chanell Gray, says seeing her oldest son suffer has been tough.

" I say to him all the time, you really did a good job, and he always says, "I'm not a hero". I tell him, you were a hero to a lot of people that day because you don't know what could have been,"Gray says.

The daycare center held an appreciation dinner at the Jaycees Community Center in Waldorf for Jalen .

They're trying to raise money to help his mom, who has six other kids, pay for his upcoming eye surgery and other medical needs There's a 60 percent chance he'll get at least some of his vision back.

"Everybody's kept coming by, and I've gotten a lot of support from friends and the parents at the daycare center. I feel so blessed for that," Jalen says.
If Jalen's next eye surgery goes well, he'll apply for college admission. His dream is to be the star safety for the Virginia Union football team. He'd like to major in Sports Communications.

There are two ways you can help Jalen Farmer's family with his medical bills.

You can send donations to:
Jalen Farmer
P.O.Box 215
Brandywine, MD 20613

You can also drop off donations at :
It's a Family Affair Childcare Center
310 Garrett A Morgan Blvd
Landover, MD 20785


Police Abuse Reporting wants to take over police complaints www.privateofficer.com

Jacksonville IL July 30 2012 At least one Jacksonville citizen and the city’s police chief have a difference of opinion over how complaints against police officers should be handled.

Randy Newingham, 26, of Jacksonville helped form Police Abuse Reporting, a grassroots movement, last fall.

“I would like to see more oversight of police and more police training in communication skills,” Newingham said.

“I have sent Chief [Tony] Grootens lists of types of training that PAR would like officers to undergo. We are on the side of police, but we believe we are all equals as humans and should be treated fairly. We should be treated the way a police officer would wanted to be treated.”

Jacksonville Police Chief Tony Grootens believes the process for handling complaints about police is already in place.

“We don’t need a police oversight board for several reasons,” Grootens said. “First of all, if it is a criminal allegation against a police officer, that complaint is forwarded to the Illinois State Police to investigate and if it is an allegation of excessive force, the FBI has jurisdiction over civil rights violations.”

A movement to create citizen oversight of the police in the United States began in the 1970s, with citizen oversight in some form established in 80 percent of the country’s 50 largest cities and in more than 100 municipalities, according to the Police Assessment Resource Center in Los Angeles.

“Efforts to create external or citizen oversight of the police have traditionally been fueled by public concerns that exclusively internal mechanisms to investigate and track police misconduct have not always resulted in unbiased, thorough and timely investigations of citizen complaints of police misconduct,” the Police Assessment Resource Center said.

Proponents of enhanced civilian oversight believe that, even where internal processes have been adequate, police agencies benefit by the increasing scrutiny and transparency citizen oversight provides.

Urbana is one Illinois city that has civilian oversight of its police.

“To my knowledge, there was no precipitating incident or incidents that led to the establishment of the Civilian Police Review Board,” said Todd Rent, human relations officer for the city of Urbana. “It was something that the mayor believed to be important.”

Urbana’s seven-member Civilian Police Review Board was formed in April 2008 to oversee internal police investigations of citizens’ complaints against police officers.

“Since the inception of the review board, there has only been one appeal to the board,” Rent said. “In the end, the board supported the police department’s decision in that case.”

Rent said the majority of the complaints made to the Urbana Police Department deal with police procedures, rudeness and conduct. “There haven’t been a lot of complaints about police use of excessive force,” he said. “I think the review board is a very positive and important process because it gives the community a systematic way of achieving oversight of the police department.”

Newingham said PAR members are collecting complaints about police, including those alleging verbal and physical abuse and harassment.

“We will act as witnesses, or mediators, when people interact with police,” Newingham said. “And people have the right to file a complaint without fear of retaliation from police. Furthermore, the whole police complaint process is biased, in that the police are the ones investigating the complaint against them. What we are trying to do is to step in and create our own oversight system. Right now, we can’t be effective because state law won’t allow us to audio record police interactions with the public.”

Newingham has had a number of conflicts with Jacksonville police over the years. He has a record of misdemeanor offenses dating back more than 10 years, including cannabis possession, alcohol-related crimes and charges of resisting or obstructing a peace officer.

“I have had interactions with police and I know how some officers can abuse their authority,” Newingham said. “I know many of the officers approach situations with respect for the person they are investigating, but there are certain officers who treat certain people in our community without respect.”

Grootens said Newingham and all citizens should realize that police handle many difficult situations, including some that require physical restraint.

“What Randy Newingham and other PAR members may not understand is that police officers often have to deal with people in a situation where emotions are high and logic is non-existent,” Grootens said.

“Police have to quell potentially hostile situations the best they can at the time. Police don’t have the luxury of devoting an inordinate amount of time to quell certain situations. Citizens involved in hostile situations are often given the choice to leave immediately or be arrested. And more often than not parties involved are heavily intoxicated. If you look at the scenario, the officers’ job is to not allow the hostilities to escalate. Oftentimes, you can’t do that in a nice way.”

Newingham said that PAR is an outgrowth of several incidents in which police were accused of using excessive force, including the Dennis Lancaster case in 2009.

“PAR basically started with Dennis’ case,” Newingham said. “Since then, we have protested several times in front of the [Morgan County] courthouse, a few times in front of the Ferris wheel on Morton Avenue, and we even marched into the mayor’s office one time.”

In addition, Newingham and other PAR members have gone door to door with petitions, asking for police communication skills training, and attended several Jacksonville City Council meetings, requesting independent oversight of the police department.

Grootens said he is a strong advocate for police training.

“I would love to see more training for officers, but mainly training dealing with the deaf, blind and the mentally disturbed in our community,” he said.

PAR started as an online group with 228 “concerned citizens,” according to Newingham.

“We just set up the public Facebook page and that’s where a person can go to file a complaint against the Jacksonville Police Department,” Newingham said. “There is a link on the page where a person can file a complaint that we will do our best to investigate. The link asks for a person’s name, but we keep the name confidential. We don’t have subpoena power to get an officer to sit down and talk with us about the situation, but what we can do is to provide phone numbers for people to call for outside help.

“The only reason I got involved was because I saw a guy — Dennis Lancaster — who needed help getting his voice heard,” Newingham said. “I have skills in community organization that were useful in helping Dennis.”

Grootens concedes that officers handle certain situations in different ways.

“Newingham may be correct in that some officers may not treat some individuals with the utmost respect because that individual has probably created a hostile environment in which the officer has to deal with,” Grootens said. “And oftentimes alcohol is involved. You take alcohol out of the equation and, generally speaking, the situation de-escalates.

“The main message of the police department is don’t be disrespectful to the police and they won’t be disrespectful to you,” Grootens said.


Special Olympics softball player dies during a regional tournament www.privateofficer.com

LONGVIEW, Wash July 30 2012 AP -- A 21-year-old Special Olympics softball player from Longview has died after collapsing during a regional tournament in Olympia, Wash.

The Daily News of Longview reports that Charles T. Huff died of a heart attack.

Just minutes before he collapsed in the dugout at LBA Park Saturday, Huff had hit a single. His stepfather, Tyler Johnson, was on the field coaching when several people yelled there was a medical emergency.

Olympia Fire Department medics tried to revive Huff but were unsuccessful. He was pronounced dead at St. Peter's Hospital.

Huff, who was born with Down syndrome, graduated from high school this year. His softball team had won their first game of the day and was leading their second game when Huff collapsed. The rest of the game was called off.

Mass. father shoots 7-year-old daughter and 9-year-old son -commits suicide www.privateofficer.com

OXFORD, Mass. July 30 2012 -- A father shot his 7-year-old daughter and 9-year-old son before taking his own life. The 7-year-old daughter did not make it; the 9-year-old boy is fighting for his life.

A police officer pointed his gun at a mother who came home to find a crime scene at her house.

“I didn’t do anything,” she cried.

Colleen Benway was initially handcuffed by police. She was quickly released and escorted to the hospital to see her son.

Neighbors said the woman wasn't home when an ambulance turned up to take away her husband and one of her two young children.

“I’ve been here 43 years, never seen so many police cars in my life,” said one neighbor Angelo Cascione.

Friends and neighbors watched as officers taped off the two apartment home on Main Street in oxford. People at the house next door say they didn't hear anything unusual. They only knew there was problem when they saw all the lights outside.

“I never seen anything wrong I don't know what the heck's going on. I used to be over there all the time I don't understand,” said Amanda Ahearn, a friend of the family.

Family and friends were surprised by the tragedy.

“He seemed fine when I was younger. He was a nice guy. Always nice to me. He didn't seem like the type of person to do something like this,” said Ahearn.

Friends said the family of four lived upstairs. They shared the house with relatives downstairs. Neighbors and relatives are hoping for some kind of good news about the kids who live here.

“I know it's serious because I've been here 43 years and nothing like this has ever happened,” said Cascione.

Police got a 911 call around 5p.m. about gunshots fired in the suburban oxford neighborhood.

“It's a horrible scene, it's a horrible situation 03:03 we have a 7-year-old girl dead, a 9-year-old boy wounded. It doesn't get any worse than this,” said Joseph Early Jr. of the Worcester County District Attorney’s office.

The DA’s office said a 41-year-old man shot his two children before turning the gun on himself. The 9-year-old boy is now in the hospital fighting for his life.

Officials said the man had separated from his wife about a month ago. His gun license had expired in 1999.

Police are expected to be on the scene for most of the evening.


Jackson Community College replacing its campus security department with private company www.privateofficer.com

SUMMIT TWP., MI July 30 2012 – Jackson Community College is dissolving its campus security department and privatizing the service in hopes of saving about $300,000 in this year’s budget.

The transition is scheduled to take place Aug. 1, college officials said.

Security services on JCC’s main Summit Township campus and its soon-to-open north campus in the former Photo Marketing Association headquarters in Blackman Township now will be handled by ArmorKnight Security Inc. of Adrian.

The company also provides security for JCC’s Clyde LeTarte Center in Hillsdale.

“We are still very committed to having a safe and secure campus,” said Cindy Allen, JCC spokeswoman. “We will continue to have armed security on campus 24/7. We haven’t changed that commitment in any way.”

Students in JCC’s criminal justice program also will still be able to participate in on-campus internship programs, Allen said.

JCC also is retaining two of its own security officers. Jeffrey Whipple will stay on as full-time safety and security specialist, and Tom VanHeest will keep his 29-hour job as safety and security officer.

One full-time employee and two other part-time employees will be exercising their seniority rights to bump into other campus positions they are qualified for, Allen said. Two open full-time positions will go unfilled, she said, and the program’s 10 to 15 temporary employees will be interviewed by ArmorKnight Security for possible employment there.

The privatized service, paid at an hourly rate, is budgeted at about $400,000 as opposed to the approximately $680,000 JCC’s own department would have cost, Allen said.

JCC received 20 responses to a request for proposals for security services, Allen said. ArmorKnight Security was chosen from three finalists, and all officers will be trained in Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards, she said.

JCC decided to have armed security guards on campus at all times about two years ago. It has had virtually no violent crime on campus in recent years, according to a safety report on its website.


UNC Charlotte develops app to help police www.privateofficer.com

CHARLOTTE, N.C. July 30 2012 (AP) — An app for the iPod developed by two UNC Charlotte professors and several students helps campus police respond to a mass shooting or other any other tragedy that involves multiple victims.

The app uses digital architectural files to create 3-D maps of every campus building. The maps are loaded in iPod Touches carried on the arms of SWAT team members or other first responders, The Charlotte Observer reports (http://bit.ly/LUgK6X).

SWAT officers and the command center can send the locations of officers, the victims, the shooter or other information constantly back and forth.

"The technology is pretty cool. This could definitely be a valuable tool because we could tell where injured people are — because that's the ultimate thing, saving lives," said Eric Cox, a SWAT team officer who participated in an exercise with the app Friday.

The app was developed by Bill Ribarsky, chairman of UNC Charlotte's computer science department and director of the Charlotte Visualization Center, which uses visual analytics to solve complex problems in science, engineering and other disciplines. He was helped by associate professor K.R. Subramanian, graduate students and a research scientist.

The National Institute of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security funded the app's development, and Ribarsky hopes it can be expanded to more buildings in more places.

The technology for the app was guided by guided by how doctors use high-tech tools for colonoscopies, Ribarsky said.

"The doctor has to navigate and look at each polyp," he said. "It's not just flying down the colon."

Friday's test had a few glitches — there were problems securing a wireless connection for everyone — but overall, UNC Charlotte Police Chief Jeff Baker was very pleased.

"It exceeded our expectations," Baker said. "We want as many platforms as possible to assist seeing and sending messages without radios. It's important to think of the future of safety."

Death rate at Richmond jail far outpaces national average www.privateofficer.com

Richmond, Va. July 30 2012

The death rate for inmates of the Richmond City Jail over the past dozen years has been far above the national average for facilities of its size, raising the question of whether any of the deaths could have been prevented, according to an expert on medical care at the nation's jails and prisons.

The mortality rate for inmates at the overheated and chronically overcrowded Richmond jail was 2.5 times higher than the average annual death rate at jails of similar size across the country from 2000 through 2007, the most recent years for which comparable national data were available.

And since 2007, the average number of Richmond jail deaths per year has increased, even as average death rates across the nation declined, according to an analysis by Dr. Marc Stern, a former medical director for prisons in Washington state.

"It's a striking difference," said Stern, a professor at the University of Washington who does consulting work for the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. "I think there could be excess deaths."

There are two possible explanations for the Richmond jail's relatively high number of deaths: Either the people being arrested and jailed in Richmond are sicker than their criminal counterparts in other American cities, Stern said, or Richmond's prisoners are getting inferior medical care.

Sheriff C.T. Woody Jr. said a majority of the inmates come to the jail with pre-existing health problems, and many have mental-health problems.

"All we are supposed to do is provide standard treatment," said Woody, who took office in 2006. "They get better treatment here than they do out on the street. I can't make them take their meds."

He added, "The medical treatment at the Richmond City Jail since I've been here is better than it has ever been."

Woody's predecessor, Michelle Mitchell, who was sheriff from 1994 through 2005, could not be reached for comment Friday.

Sixty people have died in the custody of the Richmond jail from 2000 through today, in most cases because of natural causes.

Elsewhere in the region, 15 people have died since 2006 while in the custody of the Riverside Regional Jail in Hopewell, including two hangings and one who died of car fumes while on work release. Riverside houses inmates from the counties of Charles City, Chesterfield, Prince George and Surry and the cities of Colonial Heights, Hopewell and Petersburg.

Henrico County's two jails have had 12 deaths since 2006, including five suicides, a heroin overdose, and six deaths linked to illness or other natural causes.

Two people died over the same period at the Chesterfield County jail, including a suicide and the death by natural causes of a man while he was on home electronic monitoring. Two inmates of the Pamunkey Regional Jail in Hanover County have died. One died of natural causes and the other hanged himself this year.

Stern, who examined a list of the Richmond deaths provided by the city Sheriff's Office, said he saw nothing unusual about the causes of the inmates' deaths. But he urged an investigation of each of the deaths to determine whether any could have been prevented.

"The difference is striking enough that it should prompt a review of the original cases," Stern said, referring to the Richmond jail's higher death rate.

Woody countered, "That's just his opinion. All I know is we do all we can, and medical does a great job."

* * * * *

Stern compared the number of Richmond jail deaths from 2000 to 2007 with national data from the Bureau of Justice Statistics of the Department of Justice. He concluded that the death rate during that period was 336 deaths per 100,000 Richmond jail inmates, compared with an average rate of 137 deaths per 100,000 at jails of similar size nationwide.

Margaret Noonan, a statistician for the Bureau of Justice Statistics and author of the report on mortality rates at jails from 2000 to 2007, agreed with Stern that the causes of death of Richmond inmates appear normal for a jail.

"Jails are always at the mercy of the population that they serve," Noonan said. "For a proportion of inmates, the care that they get in jails and prisons is the only care that they get. A lot of that has to do with the lifestyle that sent them to jail in the first place."

Stern's call for an evaluation of Richmond's jail deaths comes less than three weeks after Katrina Jones, a 19-year-old prisoner, died after she apparently strangled herself at the jail. She fatally injured herself after mental-health workers concluded she was not a threat to herself, even though she had tried to hang herself once before in front of deputies, according to sheriff's officials.

The Sheriff's Office also is facing lawsuits alleging inadequate care, including one involving a man who died of heat exposure at the jail, which has no air conditioning in the men's tiers.

For several years, Woody has voiced concern about poor conditions at the facility. The jail was built in the 1960s to house 882 inmates, but the average daily population hovers at more than 1,300. A new jail is under construction and is scheduled to open in 2014, despite concerns that it will be overcrowded immediately. The new facility will have 1,032 beds.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch compiled a database listing 81 deaths of Richmond jail inmates from 1994, Mitchell's first year in office, through the present. Fifty-one of those prisoners died during Mitchell's administration, and 30 have died during Woody's time in office.

The database includes deaths of inmates in the custody of other jails in the region since 2006. Those facilities house significantly fewer inmates than does the Richmond jail and they had significantly fewer deaths.

On average, about 33,000 people pass through the Richmond jail each year, said sheriff's Maj. Jerry Baldwin.

The region's deaths include inmates who are in the custody of the jail but die outside the facility — at a hospital, for example. The causes of death among Richmond inmates range from heart failure and chronic alcoholism to dehydration and complications of AIDS and cocaine poisoning or opiate poisoning. Since 2000, seven inmates have died from hanging or strangling themselves, according to sheriff's officials. That includes Jones, whose cause of death is pending at the state medical examiner's office.

Another person in custody, James Grooms III, died of injuries suffered during a shootout when he tried to rob a store in South Richmond, authorities said.

* * * * *

Jones' death on July 9 has raised questions as to whether it could have been prevented.

On July 1, Jones used a gown as a noose and tried to strangle herself in front of deputies and was temporarily placed under stricter supervision, sheriff's officials said.

On the same day, mental-health professionals decided she was not a threat to herself and she was returned to the general population, officials said. She was moved the next day to an isolation cell after she was found hiding in an unauthorized area, and on July 3 she was found unconscious in her cell. She remained unconscious until she was taken off life support several days later at VCU Medical Center.

Jones had been in the jail since June 21, the same day she was sentenced to serve five years in prison for her role in a home-invasion robbery. Her attorney has questioned why she was placed in isolation after she had tried to strangle herself the first time.

Woody declined to comment Friday on Jones' death, citing the possibility of a civil lawsuit.

A spokesman for Correct Care Solutions, the Nashville, Tenn.-based company with which the Sheriff's Office contracts to provide medical care at the jail, refused to comment on the death, citing federal privacy law. The spokesman, Patrick Cummiskey, said in an email that the company is proud of the care it provides to the Richmond jail's prisoners.

"Loss of life is always tragic and our thoughts and prayers go out to all that grieve," Cummiskey wrote. Correct Care has been providing medical services to the jail since last year.

In June, attorneys Donna Miller Rostant and Mark J. Krudys filed a lawsuit on behalf of the estate of Grant R. Sleeper, a Richmond jail inmate who died of heat exposure in 2010. The wrongful-death suit is seeking more than $10 million and alleges that the city and the Sheriff's Office failed to protect him from inhumane conditions in the overcrowded facility.

In February, a lawsuit seeking $31 million was filed on behalf of Sunday Lucas, alleging that in 2008 staff members delayed allowing her to get medical treatment at the jail, resulting in a stroke.

In September, a Richmond jury returned a $2.4 million verdict against Woody and the jail's former chief physician in a wrongful-death case involving inmate James D. Robinson. He died in March 2008 after medical staff at the jail failed to diagnose or properly treat his pneumonia, according to the complaint.


Jacksonville security officer shoots three men www.privateofficer.com

Jacksonville Fla July 30 2012 A man is in life-threatening condition after a shooting in the parking lot of Wacko's gentleman's club Saturday night involving a security guard, police said.

The incident began with a disturbance in the club at 3701 Emerson St., said Sgt. Jay Farhat of the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office.

Farhat said three men were asked by bouncers to leave the club about 1:40 a.m. Then there was a disturbance in the parking lot. Shots were fired, after which the men fled in a truck.

Farhat said the security guard shot all three men.

Police called to the scene spotted the truck that left the Wacko's parking lot with the men just down the road at the Taco Bell restaurant at Emerson and Philips Highway. The men were detained there.

Farhat said all three were taken to Shands Jacksonville hospital with one in life-threatening condition.

A light blue Ford F-150 was surrounded by police tape at the Taco Bell intersection.

People standing outside Wacko's said there was a fight in the parking lot and the security guard was called to help. Then gunfire broke out.

The guard was working at the strip mall where Wacko's and other businesses are located, and Farhat said the investigation is looking into why he opened fire and whether it was justified.

Police were looking to examine video surveillance.


Arkansas man gets death penalty in death of police officer www.privateofficer.com

PARAGOULD, Ark. July 30 2012 (AP) - An Arkansas man who shot a police officer during a traffic stop last year, then coldly shot him again in the face while he was pleading for his life, was sentenced to death on Saturday.

Jerry Lard was convicted Thursday of capital murder, and a Greene County judge agreed with the jury that the 38-year-old should die for killing Trumann police officer Jonathan Schmidt in April 2011.

Schmidt's father, Donald Schmidt Sr., welcomed the decision, saying the youngest of his son's three children, who turns 3 years old in October, will grow up not knowing his father.

"It's given me an overwhelming sense of relief," Schmidt said. "For some of the family members who lost their husband- the children, they'll never get to see their father again. Only time will heal their wounds."

Lard's attorney, Katherine Streett, said the case will be automatically appealed and that she doesn't comment on ongoing cases.

Prosecutor Scott Ellington, in a statement, said seeking the death sentence always involves a lot of thought and prayer, but that he saw no other option in the case of Lard, who also fired on but missed Schmidt's partner, Sgt. Corey Overstreet, during the confrontation.

"The jury echoed the commitment of the community to protect those who protect us. I am very proud of their courage and fortitude. I know it wasn't an easy decision, but it is one that had to be made," Ellington said.

Lard's attorneys didn't deny that he killed Schmidt, but they say Lard was mentally ill or deficient and should be spared execution.

Overstreet testified that he showed up as backup last year after Schmidt pulled over a car in which Lard was a passenger.

At one point, Schmidt asked Lard his name and birthday and radioed the information back. Schmidt walked to Lard's side of the car.

"When he opened the door, a hand reached out and started shooting Jonathan," Overstreet said.

Overstreet went to reach for his gun, but he said Lard pointed his weapon at him, so he scrambled between the vehicles. He heard gunshots.

Video taken the night of the shooting from dashboard cameras in the police cars showed Schmidt helping Overstreet back onto his feet after he fell, The Jonesboro Sun reported.

Lard swore and shot at Schmidt, who said, "Please, don't shoot me again."

A medical examiner told the jury Schmidt was shot four times, in the chin, neck, right wrist and chest, though a protective vest blocked that shot.

The trial was moved from Poinsett County to Greene County at the request of the defense.

Lard becomes the 38th death row inmate in Arkansas, although the state currently can't carry out executions since the Arkansas Supreme Court struck down its lethal injection law earlier this year.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

TN court clerks resist suspending licenses over unpaid fees www.privateofficer.com

Nashville TN July 29 2012 Come Wednesday, Omar Dhies is set to lose his driver’s license.

Not because of the DUI charge, but because he hasn’t paid nearly $2,500 in court fees he owes after his conviction in Davidson County.

“I’m trying to pay the court costs,” Dhies said. “But (what) if you don’t have nothing to pay to get the license back?”

Starting July 1, clerks throughout Tennessee gained the power to begin suspending driver’s licenses if court fees and fines go unpaid for a year. But not a single license has been suspended, according to the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security. Even Tommy Bradley, chief administrative officer for the Davidson County Criminal Court Clerk’s Office and the man who wrote the law, is holding off until Aug. 1 to give debtors one last chance to pay at least something.

Other clerks are questioning whether to suspend licenses at all, out of logistical or moral reservations.

“I just want to wait and see,” said Wilson County Circuit Court Clerk Linda Neal. “I’m afraid this law is going to be hurting the people who would really like to put out the effort to pay and they simply can’t.”

Bradley acknowledges there is “widespread” opposition to the law, which he wrote to help collect hundreds of millions in uncollected court costs.

Wiggle room

In Davidson County alone, taxpayers are owed more than $300 million in court costs — enough to run Metro’s police and fire departments for a year. Bradley noticed that courts had far less trouble collecting costs from defendants in traffic cases who risked losing their licenses for not paying up. So he persuaded the legislature in 2011 to extend that potential penalty to all criminal court defendants.

The law states that clerks are supposed to file to have a debtor’s license suspended if their fees are uncollected a year after disposition. Clerks were given wiggle room, however, to delay filing for a suspension, as in the case of debtors setting up payment plans.

Bradley said that even his office won’t suspend licenses of debtors who pay at least $15 a month.

“We’re only going to be sending the ones who aren’t paid and aren’t paying,” he said. “If they’re making a minimum monthly payment of $15 a month, we’re not sending it. The point is not to take away your license, but to get it paid.”

Since his office began sending out warnings, he said the simple threat of suspension has helped collect on fees. More than $600,000 has been collected in court fees than the prior year. “That’s a chunk of change,” he said. “The word’s out.”

Broad opposition

But Bradley recognizes that the new law isn’t particularly popular among clerks.

“I understand clearly the opposition for this statute,” he said. “I think it’s widespread, to be frank.”

Neal said that aside from moral qualms at saddling poor offenders with even more burdens, she’s not sure she has the money or staff to send out notices and then process debtors for suspensions.

“We’ve got all the work that we can say grace over now,” Neal said. “To me, it’s going to be more record-keeping and a little bit more difficult to keep up with.”

Neal said she’s more likely to just continue sending unpaid debts to a collection agency. It’s cheaper and easier on her overworked staff.

The new law also has created more work for attorneys. Davidson County Public Defender Dawn Deaner said more clients are asking judges to have their fees waived, so as to avoid having their licenses suspended.

“You can’t get blood from a turnip. I think, frankly, a lot of the clerks out there recognize that they’re chasing a turnip, that these folks don’t have the money,” Deaner said. “Most of the people in the criminal justice system, they are indigent, they are living below the federal poverty guideline. When you then suspend their driver’s license, you make it harder for them to find employment, find resources, find ways to pay these debts.”

Source:the tennessean

Former constable gets second indecency charge www.privateofficer.com

Lancaster PA July 29 2012 A former Pennsylvania state constable who was charged with indecent exposure six years ago has been charged again with the same offense.

Lititz police arrested Mark E. Brubaker, 44, of 501 Front St., on Tuesday and charged him with indecent exposure for an incident earlier this month.

Brubaker is currently unemployed.

According to the criminal complaint filed by Lititz police, Brubaker exposed his genitals in front of a 57-year-old woman and asked, "Do you think you can handle this?"

Police said the incident occurred July 13 in the first block of Plum Street in the borough.

Police arrested him on July 24. He is charged with one count of indecent exposure and is awaiting a preliminary hearing.

The charge was filed before Magisterial District Judge Edward A. Tobin.

This is the second indecent exposure arrest against Brubaker. According to newspaper records, in July 2006, he was accused of exposing himself to a female security guard at Manheim Auto Auction. He pleaded guilty to the charge, according to court records.

The guard told police she was at a gate where vehicles enter and exit the auction grounds at 1190 Lancaster Road (Route 72), Manheim. Brubaker, who was on duty to direct traffic, allegedly called the guard over to his car, pulled his constable hat from his lap, and exposed his genitals to the woman, police said.


Woman arrested in Jacksonville after incident on Jet Blue flight www.privateofficer.com

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. July 29 2012-- A woman was arrested by Jacksonville Aviation Authority police after landing at Jacksonville International Airport on a Jet Blue flight from Puerto Rico, JIA spokesman Michael Stewart confirmed.

The woman, who was going through customs and found to have outstanding warrants, was escorted from the plane in Jacksonville by JAA police, Stewart said.

Prior to her arrest, the airline and JAA were contacted and the airline was able to identify her. However, Stewart said he did not have the woman's name.

She was then taken into custody, taken downtown and booked. There will be a booking report from the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office, Stewart said.

She was wanted by the state of Maryland.

Source:First Coast News

3 Men arrested in attempted theft of hospital ATM www.privateofficer.com

EDMOND, Okla. July 29 2012- Three men, all from Dallas, Texas, have been arrested in connection with the attempted theft of an ATM machine in from of an Edmond hospital, according to police.

Officers say Taveon Deaunta Davis, 26, Paul LaRue McCoy, 27, and Kendrick Raynard Johnson, 27, attempted to steal an ATM machine near the entrance of the OU Medical Center-Edmond at 1 South Bryant at 2:55 a.m. Thursday.

A hospital security officer was watching security cameras and saw the men enter the south entrance of the hospital, according to police. One of the men was carrying a red dolly. Within seconds, security saw the man attempting to carry the ATM out the south door, officers said. The security officer ran toward the area and told police he saw four men running out the hospital doors.

Security personnel then saw a white van speeding away from the south entrance of the hospital and two men running eastbound toward Bryant, according to police. When Edmond officers arrived they saw a white van sitting between a Walgreens and McDonalds in a private drive. The van was not occupied.

The hospital security officer believes about 30 minutes before attempting to steal the ATM that two of the suspects entered the emergency room admitting entrance of the hospital and walked through the hospital. Two of the men running from the scene matched the description of the two men seen earlier in the ER, according to police.

At around 3:38 a.m. officers were sitting with the van when a silver four-door car with three black men inside attempted to pull onto the private drive. When the three men saw the patrol cars sitting by the van the driver, who officers said appeared surprised, immediately turned back onto 2nd Street and continued eastbound.

Another Edmond officer made a traffic stop on the silver vehicle and Davis, McCoy and Johnson were arrested. Officers are still investigating the incident and say other perpetrators remain at large.


Police Dogs Die After Being Left in Hot Car www.privateofficer.com

SAN ANTONIO, TX July 29 2012 - The Bexar County Sheriff's Office is investigating the death of two of the department's service dogs who died after they were left inside patrol vehicles overnight.

Officials with the Bexar County Sheriff's Office say the dogs were "inadvertently left inside" the vehicles and suffered from heat exposure. A news release states "Deputy Steve Benoy, a 23-year veteran of the Sheriff's Office assigned to the K9 Section, is completely devastated by this tragic accident. He has been assigned to the unit for 13 of those 23 years and has a flawless record."

Officials say Benoy discovered the dead animals Wednesday in their kennels inside a county-owned SUV at his residence. Authorities believe the deputy drove home and parked that vehicle Tuesday, then went out for the evening. He allegedly forgot to place the dogs in their regular quarters at his residence.

"Deputy Benoy has been a dedicated officer during his career; he has never received any discipline during his tenure with the Sheriff's Office," Sheriff Amadeo Ortiz stated in the release. "It is my belief that this is a tragic accident however; the Sheriff's Office is following standard procedures in conducting a thorough investigation."

The Sheriff's Office Criminal Investigation Division is working with Animal Care Services in the investigation. Names of the two Belgian Malinois law enforcement dogs haven't been released.

Deputy Benoy has been placed on 10 days of administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.


Man loitering in bathroom at Texas Rangers baseball game arrested with porn www.privateofficer.com

ARLINGTON, Texas, July 28 2012-- A man faces federal child pornography possession charges after he allegedly was caught loitering in restrooms at a Texas Rangers baseball game, officials said.

Michael Allen Manske, 48, of Hubbard, Texas, was seen observing boys at men's room urinals at a game in Arlington, Texas, and a security officer who questioned him found sexually explicit photos on his cellphone, the federal criminal complaint alleges.

Manske has a history of indecent exposure dating to 1994, and is a registered sex offender, the Fort Worth ( Texas) Star-Telegram reported Wednesday.

"At any public place, in any public restroom, people should be cautious of the children who are there. If something looks odd or suspicious, definitely contact law enforcement and let them know," advised Arlington, Texas, Police spokeswoman Tiara Richard.


California man arrested in connection with international child porn ring www.privateofficer.com

Anderson CA July 29 2012 An Anderson man and guardian of two children is in custody after authorities say they found violent child pornography on his computers and online chats in which he discussed torturing and eating children.

Jason Scarcello, 42, was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of having and distributing pornographic videos and photos of children, said agents with the Homeland Security Investigations branch of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Scarcello's was one of 42 arrests made around the world in what authorities called one of the most disturbing cases of its kind they've seen. He is one of 12 arrested in the U.S.

"Just being able to finally SEE an actually (sic) child cooking would be a dream come true. I really am hoping that I can find some attainable targets up here," Scarcello wrote in one chat under a screen name, investigators said. They said he wrote that he'd like to try eating one child and he's "not worried about any of the potential kids."

Scarcello, who serves as a guardian to two children, had multiple CDs and DVDs depicting children being abused and, in some cases, dead, Special Agent Gene Kizenko said in a criminal complaint filed Wednesday in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California.

Agents say they still are investigating whether Scarcello ever assaulted any children.

The District Court website listed Matthew McCrary Scoble, of the Office of Federal Defenders, as the attorney for Jason Scarcello.

Scoble declined to comment on the case.

Agents say they were led to Scarcello after arresting others allegedly involved in an international child pornography ring. Participants used "peer to peer" networks to trade images and videos of child pornography using special keywords to identify the explicit material, Kizenko said.

Agents built their case by piecing together clues from Scarcello's IP address, his Yahoo! email account and tracking pornographic images shared by Scarcello, Michael Arnett, of Kansas City, and others, Kizenko said in his complaint. An IP address is the unique numeric code assigned to a computer when it is connected to the Internet.

Kizenko said Scarcello traded images over the Ares Network, both downloading and distributing images and video. Kizenko said agents found at least 37 unique files shared between December 2011 and June 2012 under an IP address registered to Scarcello, including two videos of prepubescent children being raped and one involving use of a sex toy on a child.

He said Scarcello also used chat rooms to discuss fantasies. He said Scarcello allegedly chatted online with Arnett about kidnapping, torturing, killing and eating children.

The chats took place between August 2011 and March 2012, Kizenko said.

In several chat logs included in the complaint, Scarcello allegedly asked Arnett about kidnapping children.

"One thing I always forget to ask you is what do you keep in your van, like what's a good 'hunting kit' and supplies do you have," Kizenko said Scarcello wrote under his screen name. He said Scarcello wrote about the ecstasy he'd expect from kidnapping a child, including the fear his victim would feel.

The pair also discussed cannibalism, Kizenko stated. Arnett asked Scarcello at one point if he would like to "take one to eat for real?" according to the complaint.

"I like to think so. My ideal of coarse would be to have a partner to do it with and learn from, but the reality of it is that I'd probably have to do it alone," Scarcello wrote, according to Kizenko's complaint. "I'd say my concerns of doing it are really only in the getting caught. I'm not concerned with what the child or it's parents think or feel. All of that 'boo hoo' BS belongs under the category of 'woulda coulda shoulda done something to prevent it.' "

Arnett also used the network to share a photograph he'd taken of two children, younger than 2, bound and gagged in a roasting pan, Kizenko said. Those children were later found alive.

The chats were found by authorities after they arrested Arnett in May.

Ross Feinstein, spokesman for ICE, said Arnett chatted online with Scarcello and one other individual, who also was arrested in another part of the United States, about cannibalism.

"I've been a part of this investigation for a while. Everything's horrific about it," he said. "The level of discussion of exploitation of children is the most disturbing I've ever seen."

On Wednesday agents showed up at Scarcello's single-story ranch house, Kizenko said. They searched the two-bedroom, one-bathroom home, which has a children's jungle gym on the side, he said.

One of the rooms was "obviously" set up for two children, he said. Agents found at least two computers and began searching them.

Kizenko said Scarcello, his wife and the two children showed up; his wife took the children inside while investigators questioned Scarcello.

At first Scarcello said a computer virus had brought up strange things on his computer, but then he admitted to possessing pornography, Kizenko said.

He said Scarcello acknowledged the username for Yahoo! chat that investigators had tracked was his.

He said Scarcello then led investigators to his bedroom and showed them two CD pouches.
A purple pouch with black trim was marked "Jason's downloaded CDs," "HANDS OFF," and "That means you, Hunny Bunny!" Kizenko said in the complaint.

Inside, officers found CDs and DVDs depicting prepubescent children having sex with adults, Kizenko said. He said Scarcello said "he preferred images and videos of girls, but could not say for certain if (he) had images or videos of boys."

Kizenko said Scarcello told agents he began downloading child pornography about one year ago, with the last time he did it about a month ago.

Kizenko said in the complaint that the photographs involved children being physically abused and in bondage, with some photos of dead children and autopsy photos of children.

Kizenko said Scarcello and his wife have two young children, who were either adopted or in foster care, younger than 10.

Roxanne Burke, a community relations representative for the Shasta County Health and Human Services Agency, Children's Services, declined to comment on the case.

In an emailed statement, she said all children fostered through Shasta County Children's Services can go into homes only if everyone 18 and older passes a criminal record check that includes fingerprints. Foster parents must also take a 27-hour course, and are screened through a process involving interviews and home visits.

The Scarcello investigation was part of an international child pornography probe that began in Boston, Feinstein said.

It began with the arrest of a hotel manager there, he said. Agents found a series of explicit pictures that stood out from the rest, because of a stuffed animal and newer clothing.

ICE agents tracked it to The Netherlands. A television spot involving the child's face was aired, and within two hours Dutch agents arrested Robert Mikelsons, a day care worker, and his boyfriend, Feinstein said.

He said Mikelsons had abused about 87 children, and agents tracked the photographs' distribution to Arnett.

Scarcello was the 11th of 12 arrested in the U.S., Feinstein said, while a church bus driver was No. 10.

Scarcello is being held without bail in the Sacramento County jail