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Saturday, December 31, 2011

[WA] Special treatment for Seattle Police Domestic Violence Detective Sgt. Murray who assaulted his girlfriend in public

Seattle Police Detective Ronald Lee Murray, the Domestic Violence Unit Sgt. who was witnessed by other officers assaulting his girlfriend in public, got a sweet deal:

...“I don’t know the last time, if ever, we’ve done a deferred prosecution on a domestic violence case,” [Judge Nancy] Harmon said...

Previous Post:
[WA] Police say they saw SPD Domestic Violence Unit Sgt. Murray assault girlfriend in public ...A few of our officers saw Mr. Murray dragging the female victim by the upper part of her jacket and hair through the gravel parking lot," [Chelan County Det. Sgt. Jerry Moore] told seattlepi.com. "Numerous witnesses as well as officers saw the assault take place"... Deputies noted the woman was intoxicated but did not indicate whether Murray was believed to be intoxicated. The arresting deputy noted that Murray said he knew he was wrong and had no excuse for his behavior... Police sources say the victim in this case also works for the department...  "She was literally being dragged"...

The message to other abusive officers: Relax.

COP'S DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CASE DEFERRED FOR TREATMENT
Wenatchee World
By Jefferson Robbins
Friday, December 30, 2011
[Excerpts] The Seattle police detective charged with domestic violence after a Leavenworth Oktoberfest scuffle will avoid prosecution if he carries out a program of alcoholism treatment and probation. Ronald Lee Murray, 55, admitted to a history of alcoholism Thursday in Chelan County District Court, telling Judge Nancy Harmon he would undergo two years of treatment followed by three years of court supervision. State law allows such deferred prosecution in some cases involving alcoholism, drug dependency or mental illness. Eligible defendants must meet court-ordered conditions to qualify for dismissal of charges.... “I don’t know the last time, if ever, we’ve done a deferred prosecution on a domestic violence case,” Harmon said... Murray, at the time a detective sergeant with the Seattle Police Department’s Domestic Violence Unit, was arrested Oct. 15 after Chelan County sheriff’s deputies saw him dragging his girlfriend by her hair and coat across a gravel parking lot near the Oktoberfest venue... Deputies said Murray’s victim, identified as his 44-year-old live-in girlfriend, pleaded with them to release Murray and refused to give a statement about the incident... SPD spokesman Det. Jeff Kappel said now that Murray’s criminal case is closed, the department’s Office of Professional Accountability will begin an internal investigation. Murray was transferred out of the domestic violence unit after his arrest, although he remains on duty with the Seattle police. His girlfriend was also a Seattle police administrative employee at the time of the arrest... [Full article here]

In Chelan County Courts it appears that there is no higher standard for an officer of the law who has knowingly been concealing his alcoholism while being entrusted with a department issued firearm weapon and exercising his sworn powers of arrest over others who break the same law(s). There is no higher nature of offense or hypocrisy noted for a domestic violence unit sergeant assaulting his girlfriend in a publicly flagrant manner.

Teflon. No stick.

Deferred prosecution means if he fulfills the requirements being put on him, the charge for "4th degree assault" will likely be dismissed. It appears he admitted to alcoholism, but not to domestic violence. Slick. Admitting what you've done is a part of the requirements to be allowed to defer - so he was allowed to admit to something other than what he was there for. I don't see any indication that he has to enter domestic violence treatment of any kind. There's no indication in his sweet deal that dragging a woman across the rocks by her hair was a bad thing to do.

Smoke and mirrors.

Murray should at least resign.

AFTER THE INVESTIGATION INTO TACOMA WASHINGTON POLICE CHIEF DAVID BRAME COMMITTING MURDER-SUICIDE ON HIS WIFE CRYSTAL, OUR THEN ATTORNEY GENERAL, AND NOW GOVERNOR, CHRISTINE GREGOIRE SAID:
..."We have to get tough. I'm telling law enforcement, 'Either you do something about it or it will be done to you'. We must take a no-nonsense attitude. If there is a confirmed domestic violence incident, this person should not be an officer any more. There are plenty of jobs that don't require you carrying a gun"...
Source: Clean up your act, police told: 'We have to get tough' with abusive cops, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, By Ruth Teichroeb and Julie Davidow, July 25, 2003.
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety teflon preferential treatment cop on cop washington state politics]

Friday, December 30, 2011

[FL] DOC Corrections Officer Tucker attacked his wife on side of the road, witnesses say

2 Witnesses say they saw Florida Department of Corrections Officer Johnny Tucker attack his screaming wife on the side of the road, sitting on her, pressing his forearm into her neck, snatching her up by her hair. Thanks to the professionalism of the responding Polk County Deputies, despite Tucker and his wife telling them that nothing physical happened, Tucker was arrested and charged with battery domestic violence.

Protect the wife.
Protect the prisoners he has control over.
Protect him from himself.

POLK CITY CORRECTIONS OFFICER CHARGED WITH DOMESTIC BATTERY
baynews9.com
December 28, 2011
[Excerpts] A Florida Department of Corrections officer employed at the Polk City state prison was arrested on domestic battery charges. Johnny Tucker, 28, was taken into custody Monday by Polk County Sheriff's deputies. He posted bond and was released from the Polk County jail Tuesday. According to the sheriff's office, witnesses said they saw a man, later identified as Tucker, assaulting a woman next to a white Jeep Cherokee parked on the roadside. One of the witnesses stopped and approached the couple, but the couple got back into the Jeep and left, deputies said... Tucker was arrested based on the accounts of the witnesses and the statements of Tucker and his wife, the sheriff's office said. He was charged with one count of battery domestic violence... [Full article here]

CORRECTIONS OFFICER CHARGED WITH DOMESTIC BATTERY IN POLK
Tbo.com
By Julio Ochoa
December 28, 2011
[Excerpts] A corrections officer for a state prison in Polk County was charged Monday with assaulting a woman after a witness saw the couple fighting on the side of a road, deputies said. Johnny Tucker, 28, a Florida Department of Corrections officer who works at the Polk Correctional Institute, was charged with battery domestic violence... A man and his wife were driving south on North Combee Road when they saw a woman fall out of the passenger side of a white Jeep Cherokee that was parked on the side of the road... Tucker came out of the passenger door and fell on top of the victim, deputies said. The witnesses pulled over and saw Tucker sit on top of the woman with his forearm on her neck... When the witness got out of his vehicle and confronted Tucker, he grabbed the victim by her hair and pushed her into the Jeep... The tag led a deputy to Tucker's home, where he confronted Tucker and the victim, who both said they had an argument but it was not physical, the affidavit said. The deputy got sworn statements from the witnesses and returned to Tucker's home and arrested him... [Full article here]

POLK DEPUTIES ARREST STATE CORRECTIONS OFFICER, CHARGED WITH ASSAULTING WIFE
The Ledger
By Chase Purdy
December 28, 2011
[Excerpts] Polk County deputies Monday arrested a state correctional officer on a charge he assaulted his wife during a roadside argument. An arrest affidavit states that Johnny Tucker, 28, of Lakeland, had pulled his white Jeep Cherokee to the side of Combee Road, and assaulted his screaming wife on the pavement... Two witnesses notified the Sheriff's Office upon driving up and watching as the dispute occurred, Deputy Stephen Harris wrote in the affidavit... The pair told authorities [they] saw Tucker push his forearm against the woman's neck. When one of the witnesses approached the quarreling couple,... When approached by a deputy at his house, Tucker denied assaulting his wife, authorities said. But when the pair was asked to fill out written statements, authorities found enough probable cause to make an arrest... This report will be updated. [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety lethal choking strangulatin florida state politics]

[MA] Guilty plea of State Police Cpt. McCarthy rejected in anticipation of more charges

Massachusetts State Police Cpt. Thomas McCarthy

...On Nov. 18, Saugus police responded to a woman’s home for an alarm sounding and reports of an argument. Police arrived to find the woman standing in the garage and McCarthy, in an unmarked Ford Crown Victoria police cruiser, driving away...


FROM UPDATE BELOW:
A veteran state trooper avoided a drunken-driving charge in court today despite claims by Saugus police that he smelled of booze and had an open beer bottle in his car... “The court issued what it saw fit, but we certainly have our opinion on the facts of that evening,” said state police spokesman David Procopio... McCarthy is due back in court March 9...

PREVIOUS POST:
[MA] Lawbreaking State Police Cpt. McCarthy gets to call the shots. - Massachusetts State Police /Trooper Cpt. Thomas "Tom" McCarthy - the evening shift commander for Troop C based in Holden - is charged only with failing to stop and failing to stay right of center. Amazing, but not surprising... The officer smells liquor, sees two unopened cans of beer, an empty can in the backseat, as well as McCarthy's service weapon - but can't get McCarthy to agree to turn off and step out of the vehicle. 

TROOPER ACCUSED IN CHASE IN COURT: Officer reported smelling alcohol on his breath
FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com
Updated: Thursday, 29 Dec 2011
Published : Wednesday, 28 Dec 2011
[Excerpts] A Massachusetts State Police captain who was arrested in November after allegedly leading local police on a chase appeared in court on Wednesday. Thomas McCarthy, 47, faces charges of failure to stop and a marked lane violation on Nov. 19. His attorney entered a guilty plea for those charges. The judge would not accept the plea because more charges could be filed against McCarthy... The veteran state police captain has been suspended without pay... Saugus police say they were called for complaints about an argument at McCarthy's girlfriend's home and saw him driving away in an unmarked cruiser... The officer reported smelling alcohol on his breath and saw opened and unopened beers in McCarthy's car. But the state police captain took off again down Route 1 and was eventually arrested... Another hearing is set for Jan. 19. [Full article here]

STATE POLICE CAPTAIN COULD FACE OUI CHARGES AFTER NOVEMBER ARREST
cbslocal.com
December 28, 2011
[Excerpts] Massachusetts State Police Captain Thomas McCarthy expected plead guilty to some minor motor vehicle charges on Wednesday, but instead he may face more serious charges in the future... According to court documents, McCarthy was spotted committing a marked lanes violation a short time later. An officer pulled McCarthy over and allegedly smelled alcohol on his breath. Instead of getting out of the car, McCarthy allegedly sped away. Several Saugus police officers chased him down Route 1... McCarthy was originally supposed to face a judge last month, but he never showed up in court. His attorney said McCarthy was at a treatment center in Florida. [Full article here]

JUDGE REJECTS GUILTY PLEA FROM STATE POLICE CAPTAIN FOR DRIVING VIOLATIONS; MORE CHARGES MAY BE FILED
Boston Globe
By Brian R. Ballou
12/28/2011 3:25 PM
[Excerpts] The arraignment of a Massachusetts State Police captain [Thomas McCarthy] cited last month for traffic offenses was postponed this morning at the request of prosecutors who are seeking additional charges against him, including operating under the influence of alcohol... Essex Assistant District Attorney Susan Dolhun told Judge Albert Conlon that additional charges may be filed after a clerk’s hearing on Jan. 19... [His lawyer Daniel] O’Malley had tendered a guilty plea, but Conlon didn’t accept it, and instead continued the case until the hearing. Failure to stop is a criminal offense, punishable by a $100 fine. The marked lanes violation is a civil offense that also carries a maximum $100 fine. McCarthy works out of Troop C in Central Massachusetts and serves as an evening shift commander. State police captains earn about $110,000 per year, plus overtime. On Nov. 18, Saugus police responded to a woman’s home for an alarm sounding and reports of an argument. Police arrived to find the woman standing in the garage and McCarthy, in an unmarked Ford Crown Victoria police cruiser, driving away... [Full article here]

UPDATED:

COURT: NO DRUNK DRIVING CHARGE FOR STATIE CAPTAIN
Boston Herald
By Matt Stout
Thursday, January 19, 2012
[Excerpts] A veteran state trooper avoided a drunken-driving charge in court today despite claims by Saugus police that he smelled of booze and had an open beer bottle in his car during a chase down Route 1, but state police say he’s not off the hook with them yet. Clerk Magistrate Jane Stirgwolt struck down a potential OUI rap against state police Capt. Thomas McCarthy, 47, today during a closed hearing in Lynn District Court, but allowed prosecutors to add a negligent operation charge to counts of failing to stop for police and committing a marked-lanes violation stemming from his November arrest. Stirgwolt said there was “insufficient evidence” in charging McCarthy with drunken driving, confirming Saugus police didn’t have him take field sobriety or Breathalyzer tests. But state police said observations by Saugus cops and a state police commander, who reported McCarthy showed signs of intoxication when he met him at the police station that night, will still play into their internal investigation. “The court issued what it saw fit, but we certainly have our opinion on the facts of that evening,” said state police spokesman David Procopio... McCarthy entered a plea of not guilty during an arraignment on the new moving violation, and is due back in court March 9.... [Full article here]
[Tom police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety professionalism accountability massachusetts state politics trooper]

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

[CA] 1948. Temple City Sheriff's Deputy Eggers was executed for the murder of his wife Dorothy


Dorothy Rosmond Eggers

Temple City Sheriff's Deputy Arthur Eggers changed his story enough that nothing he says or tells us about Dorothy Rosmond Eggers is worth believing. I've tried to find anything personal about Dorothy written by others. I wasn't successful.



EGGERS ADMITS HE SLEW WIFE: Coast Sheriff's Deputy
The Milwaukee Journal
Jan 27, 1946
[Excerpts]
Los  Angeles.  Calif. - Arthur Eggers. 52. has signed a confession admitting the slaying of his wife. Dorothy. 42... The woman's   nude, headless and handless body was found near a mountain highway East Jan. 2... Sheriff Eugene Biscailuz, accompanied by several deputies and [Capt. Gordon] Bowers, left Saturday night with Eggers to renew a search for the missing parts of the body... Eggers, a sheriff's deputy in near-by Temple City for 22 years, was arrested last Tuesday. A charge of suspicion of murder was then filed against him, but he had steadfastly denied any knowledge of the woman's death. He reported his wife missing Jan. 2„ the day her torso was found in a ravine near the Rim of the World highway, east of San Bernardino.

CALIFORNIAN DEPUTY SHERIFF IS HELD IN MUTILATION SLAYING OF HIS WIFE, The Niagara Falls Gazette, Wednesday, January 23, 1946, Page 22
(More at above link)

PEOPLE V. EGGERS , 30 CAL.2D 676
Oct. 3, 1947.
OPINION
[Excerpts] Arthur R. Eggers has been convicted of the crime of murder of the first degree and sentenced to death. The proceedings to be reviewed include not only the trial upon the merits, but also the hearing in regard to the issue presented by his plea of not guilty by reason of insanity and the motion for a new trial... the jury found that Eggers was sane at the time of the commission of the crime. The judgment is challenged upon four grounds... The judgment and the order denying a new trial are affirmed...  [Full article here]

OCT 15, 1948: A MURDEROUS HUSBAND IS EXECUTED
HISTORY.COM
Arthur Eggers, who was convicted of killing his wife, Dorothy, because of her alleged promiscuity, is executed in the gas chamber at San Quentin Prison. He probably would have gotten away with the crime had the investigators not received a few lucky breaks...

DOROTHY ROSMOND EGGERS
Los Angeles County, California Death Certificate Transcription
Dorothy Rosmond Eggers d. 1/1/1946
Female Cauc. b. 3/23/1903 ND
Age: 42 yrs 9mos 9dys
Residence/Deathplace: 202 N Rosemead Blvd, Temple City, Los Angeles County, California
SS# unknown
Lived in community 10 years and state 23 years
Occupation: Housewife
Married Spouse: Arthur Eggers, 52 years of age
Father. Percy David Lee, England
Mother. Mary Couch, Buffalo, NY
Burial: 8/5/1946 Valhalla Cemetery
Funeral Director: Mater & Simone, 2814 N Broadway, Los Angeles
Cause: Gunshot wound of the heart
Other condition: Post-mortem desmemberment of body
Coroner Investigation
Homicide 1/1/1946 Temple City, Los Angeles County, CA; @ home as above

ARTHUR AND DOROTHY EGGERS
in
The Casebook of Forensic Detection

By Colin Evans

THE SEXUAL CRIMINAL: A PSYCHOANALYTICAL STUDY
[First published in 1949 as a criminology/sexology textbook for law enforcement personnel]
[Excerpts] ...Two of Arthur Eggers’ friends – Robert Z. Jones, a retired deputy sheriff, and John C. Rotchford, his attorney – visited Eggers in jail on the morning of January 26. Jones told Eggers during their visit, “Art, I believe you are guilty. I believe you will have a better chance if you confess. Get it off your chest and lay it on the line.” Eggers waited a beat and then replied, “All right, I did it.” Deputy D.A. Barnes and Captain Gordon Bowers, chief of the sheriff’s bureau of investigation, were immediately brought in to take down Eggers’ confession, in which he said: "I killed her at 1 a.m. December 30. I was coming home from work and..."  The next day Eggers changed his story again and stated: "It all happened on Friday, December 28, about 9 o’clock at night. Dorothy told me she was going to leave me for a man named Bob..."  His new story wasn’t believed either... The Evening Herald and Express published an article by de River on February 12 in which the “noted psychiatrist and Los Angeles Police Department alienist” applied the technique of “depth psychology” to analyze the face of Eggers... Eggers’ murder trial began on May 5, 1946. He entered a double plea of not guilty and not guilty by reason of insanity, and a jury of ten women... Eggers took the witness stand on May 21 and offered yet another story of his wife’s murder... Eggers resigned from his job in a letter to Sheriff Biscailuz on May 29, and the jury found him guilty of first-degree murder on May 30. A trial to judge Eggers’ sanity started shortly afterward with a new jury of eleven women and one man... It was also reported by the newspaper that Eggers’ sister testified during the sanity hearing about “how their father, Frederick Eggers, former Sheriff of San Francisco County, had hallucinations that the late Gov. Friend Richardson was about to appoint him Warden of San Quentin Prison. Eggers leaped to his feet and shouted, ‘Let his spirit rest...The witness then told how Arthur had suffered several bad falls as a child, one of them leaving him unconscious for seven or eight hours.” The new jury found Eggers sane on June 28. On July 10, 1946, Eggers was sentenced to die in San Quentin’s gas chamber. Eggers told reporters as he was being led away from the courtroom, “Someday, somewhere, she’ll show up and make fools of all the prosecutors. She’s probably waiting to hear what happens to me and is probably laughing at my predicament.” After his appeals and a rejected appeal for clemency by Governor Earl Warren, Eggers received a stay of execution on February 5, 1948, less than one hour before his planned execution.... After a new series of stays, reprieves and sanity hearings, Eggers was executed on October 15, 1948...

A WARDEN ON CAPITAL PUNISHMENT
MANAS
Volume XV, No.  41
October 10,1962
[Excerpts] ...Most of the condemned individuals were known to [former warden of San Quentin prison, Clinton] Duffy — known, as we discover from the tone of his text, without negative bias and without maudlin sympathy.  Particularly effective are the author's arguments that "the deterrent theory" of the threat of death for capital crime does not work.  A good example is Duffy's account of one Arthur Eggers, who killed his wife while serving as a deputy sheriff.  Eggers had seen several men condemned to death.  After Duffy had gotten to know Eggers well, he asked him the crucial question.  The conversation began:
"Arthur," I said, "what in the world ever made you think you could get away with this?  You must have known that anyone who commits murder, even a cop, might end up here."
"I didn't think about it until after it was all over," he said.
"Why didn't the possibility of the gas chamber stop you from grabbing the gun in the first place?" I asked.
"That wouldn't stop anyone if he was mad enough," Eggers said.  "And I blew my top completely.  I caught my wife cheating, and I was going to kill her so she could never cheat again.  I didn't have another thought."
"Including the gas chamber?"
"The gas chamber!" Eggers spat the words contemptuously as he looked through the bars of his cell.  Then he said, "Why hell, warden, the gas chamber does only one thing—it kills people.  But I'll bet it never prevented a murder.  I used to believe in capital punishment because I figured if a guy killed a cop, for example, he ought to be executed to keep other guys from killing cops.  But it doesn't work that way.  Gas chamber or no gas chamber, guys will always be killing cops.  People will always he killing people.  You can't control anger, or passion, or greed, or jealousy, or fright, and that's what causes most murders.  Only crackpots and the state kill in cold blood.  Everybody else has a reason."
"Are you sorry you killed your wife?" I asked.
"Sure I'm sorry," he said, "I loved her."
"Would you kill her again under the same circumstances, even if you knew you'd go to the gas chamber for it?"
Eggers looked earnestly at me.
"Warden," he said, "the gas chamber would have nothing to do with it"...
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety lethal fatality fatalities murder california state politics]

Monday, December 26, 2011

[OH] Lorain Officer Lachner accused of hitting web editor for The Chronicle-Telegram in the head multiple times

The incident report on Lorain police officer William "Bill" Lachner's domestic violence arrest was not publicly available as is the practice, and Lachner was released from jail without seeing a judge - also not the way things are done. The Chronicle-Telegram’s web editor, Rona Proudfoot, called from her locked bathroom for help. She said he had assaulted her, punching her multiple times in the head. She did not sign an arrest affadavit against him and he would not fill out a written statement. The responding police sgt. did sign the arrest warrant. Lachner has been put on desk duty, disarmed, and due to a temporary restraining order, not supposed to go near his web editor girlfriend, Rona Proudfoot.

Updates:

  • 12/28/2011At Proudfoot’s request, Judge Mark Mihok lifted a temporary protection order against Lachner. Proudfoot said she was not in fear of him... 
  • 12/29/2011 - Mihok said he was lifting the order based on Proudfoot’s request to do so and because Lachner was reportedly seeking counseling...

LORAIN POLICE OFFICER CHARGED WITH DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
chronicle.northcoastnow.com
Filed by Evan Goodenow
December 24th, 2011
[Excerpts] ...Police reports are usually left out at the police department for the public for 48 hours after they are released, but the report was not available until it was requested. However, Police Chief Cel Rivera said Saturday there was no attempt to conceal the incident and the department takes domestic violence charges against officers seriously. “These guys are human beings. They have the same frailties as everybody else... There’s consequences to that, and that’s something he’s going to have to deal with if it’s true.” Rivera said Lachner is innocent until proven guilty and has no history of violence, but the department will conduct an internal investigation of Lachner in addition to the criminal investigation... [Full article here]

LORAIN POLICE OFFICER ARRESTED FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
The Morning Journal
Saturday, December 24, 2011
[Excerpts] Lorain Police Officer William Lachner, 44, was arrested for domestic violence early Friday after his girlfriend reported that he had assaulted her during an argument. Lachner allegedly struck 32-year-old Rona Proudfoot of Lorain in the head multiple times, according to the police report. Proudfoot had no visible injuries, police noted. She told police she was not hurt, and she declined to press charges, stating that she just wanted Lachner gone for the night... However, charges were filed on her behalf by police...  Proudfoot stated that Lachner shoved her around the house “and struck her several times in her head with his fist”... While officers were conducting their interview with  Proudfoot, Lachner called her phone and spoke to Sgt. Kenneth Zapolski. He agreed to meet police at the station. Lachner told police the argument was strictly verbal and he left the scene so it would not escalate. In the police report, Sgt. Michael Hendershot states, “William advised me that he did not push or assault  Proudfoot and that there was no physical violence between the two of them.” Lachner declined to fill out a written statement... Officers arrested Lachner at the police station and took him to the city jail. He was released several hours later on $2,500 bond. Proudfoot works as the Web Editor for The Chronicle-Telegram in Elyria. [Full article here]

UPDATE:
POLICE OFFICER PLEADS INNOCENT TO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
Morning Journal
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
[Excerpts] Lorain police officer William Lachner pleaded innocent to a domestic violence charge during his arraignment yesterday in Lorain Municipal Court... Lorain attorney Michael J. Kinlin entered the plea on Lachner’s behalf. Lachner and [Rona] Proudfoot appeared in court during the arraignment. At Proudfoot’s request, Judge Mark Mihok lifted a temporary protection order against Lachner. Proudfoot said she was not in fear of him... Proudfoot, an editor at the Chronicle Telegram, told police Lachner shoved her around the house and struck her several times in the head. She called police shortly around 2 a.m. after locking herself in the bathroom, according to the report. Lachner told police he did not push or assault her, and there was no physical evidence of violence between them... Lachner’s pretrial is scheduled for Feb. 1 at 10:30 a.m... [Full article here]


UPDATE:
PROTECTION ORDER LIFTED AGAINST LORAIN COP
Chronicle-Telegram
by Steve Fogarty 
December 29th, 2011 
[Excerpts] A temporary protection order was lifted Wednesday against a Lorain police officer accused of assaulting his girlfriend last week. Lorain Municipal Court Judge Mark Mihok agreed to lift the protection order after the alleged victim, Chronicle-Telegram Web Editor Rona Proudfoot, told the judge during a hearing Wednesday that she was no longer afraid of William Lachner... Mihok said he was lifting the order based on Proudfoot’s request to do so and because Lachner was reportedly seeking counseling... Lachner has denied attacking the 32-year-old Proudfoot, who told police he assaulted her inside her vehicle after becoming angry... The argument continued at Proudfoot’s home, where Lachner is accused of punching her several times in the head... Proudfoot also told police there had been previous incidents involving Lachner. Lorain Police Chief Cel Rivera has said the department is conducting its own investigation into Lachner... [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety lethal fatality fatalities murder state politics]

Sunday, December 25, 2011

[AZ] Amanda Blaies Rinaldi died as she feared she might.

Amanda Blaies Rinaldi

Amanda's husband, Department of Corrections Officer Anthony Philip Rinaldi, is charged with 1st degree murder.

Amanda's best friend:
..."She was scared of him, but she wanted it to work, like any mother would, for her family... She said 'If anything happens to me, I want you to know who did it'"... 

Amanda's sister:
"My mom has told her so many times to get away... She kept on saying 'I love him'... He kept on yelling at her, cussing at her"...

Amanda's mom:
"She was a wonderful mother, a wonderful person. She's loved and liked by everyone, very smart, but very stupid when it came to this person. She always went for the underdog, she thought she could fix him... I tried my best to explain she's abused, she thought he would never do it, but she said, if something happens to me, look for him. She said that to numerous friends. She made a will. This is a sick situation. She was worried he may do something like this"...



Blaiesing Heart for Amanda Blaies
A fund set up by Amanda's friend to to help Amanda's mother care for the two young children:
Blaiesing Heart for Amanda Blaies
c/o Florida Community Bank
2400 N. Tamiami Trail #100


HEARING SET FOR MAN CHARGED WITH KILLING FORMER COLLIER COUNTY RESIDENT IN ARIZONA
news-press.com
Denes Husty III
Dec. 22, 2011
[Excerpts] A Dec. 27 preliminary court hearing is scheduled in Phoenix for a man accused of killing a former Collier County resident in Arizona. Anthony Rinaldi, 26, was charged Dec. 13 with second-degree murder in the shooting death of his wife, Amanda Blaies-Rinaldi, in her Phoenix-area home... Rinaldi is accused of following her to Arizona and then shooting her. On Tuesday, a grand jury indicted Rinaldi on a first-degree murder charge, according to Maricopa County court records. [Full article here]


FORMER NAPLES MAN ACCUSED OF KILLING WIFE IN ARIZONA FACES FIRST-DEGREE MURDER CHARGE
Naples Daily News
December 20, 2011
[Excerpts] A former Naples man accused of killing his wife in Phoenix is now charged with first-degree murder after his stepson's testimony bolstered the case. Anthony Rinaldi, 26, of Phoenix, who was arrested on a second-degree murder charge Dec. 13, faces life in prison if convicted of the first-degree murder charge involving Amanda Blaies-Rinaldi, 28. Blaies-Rinaldi attended Barron Collier High School and worked for years at Tommy Bahamas in Naples and Roy's Hawaian Fusion restaurant in Bayfront. Rinaldi, a Marine who said he "snapped" due to post-traumatic stress disorder, remains jailed and also faces a disorderly conduct charge. The couple met 2½ years ago in Naples. Blaies obtained a restraining order against him last year... "Aidan's testimony changed it," said Tori Anderson, Blaies' best friend and godmother to Blaies' 7-year-old son... [Full article here]


EARLIER:

File: 2010 Protection order application [PDF]

POLICE: CHILDREN HEAR FATAL SHOOTING OF MOTHER
KPHO
By Phil Benson, Elizabeth Erwin, Steve Stout
Posted: Dec 13, 2011 7:51 PM PST
Updated: Dec 14, 2011 10:50 AM PST
[Excerpts] The man who police say confessed to shooting his wife while one of his children was on the phone to a 911 operator Tuesday night is a detention officer for the state Department of Corrections. Police said 26-year-old Anthony Philip Rinaldi was booked into jail on a charge of second-degree murder in the shooting death of his wife, 28-year-old Amanda Blaies-Rinaldi. Rinaldi had worked at the Lewisville facility... [Full article here]

LOVED ONES REMEMBER BARRON COLLIER GRAD MURDERED IN ARIZONA
WINK News
Dec 14, 2011
[Excerpts] WINK News is learning a brutal homicide in Arizona has a direct connection to Collier County. A 28-year-old Naples woman is allegedly murdered by her husband while while her two sons are in the next room on the phone with 911. It happened just outside of Phoenix Arizona. The mother, Amanda Blaies Rinaldi grew up in Naples and graduated from Barron Collier High School. Her husband, Anthony Rinaldi, is a corrections officer, now behind bars after confessing to killing his wife Amanda. Police say when they arrived, they found the two boys, ages two and seven with the body of their mother. The oldest son had called 911 and told operators his parents were fighting... Police say after the shooting, Rinaldi left the house and drove until he saw an officer doing a traffic stop. That's when he pulled over, got out of the car, and told the officer he had just shot his wife... Friends and family tell WINK News Amanda and Anthony had a strained relationship with a history of violence. "It's not right, it's not fair," says Tori Anderson, Amanda's best friend and the Godmother to her oldest son. Anderson describes her friend as a good spirited, family oriented person. "Someone just ripped this wonderful person from our lives and right now I just don't know how to get through it because I need answers. I need to know why"... Amanda's mother, Pamela Blaies, spoke to WINK News on the phone from Phoenix. She says their relationship was abusive from the beginning. "She was a wonderful mother, a wonderful person. She's loved and liked by everyone, very smart, but very stupid when it came to this person. She always went for the underdog, she thought she could fix him... I tried my best to explain she's abused, she thought he would never do it, but she said, if something happens to me, look for him. She said that to numerous friends. She made a will. This is a sick situation. She was worried he may do something like this"... [Full article here]

POLICE: CORRECTIONS OFFICER 'SNAPPED' BEFORE SHOOTING WIFE
KPHO
By Elizabeth Erwin
Posted: Dec 15, 2011
[Excerpts] A former soldier says he "snapped" and his military training kicked in before he shot his wife to death in Ahwatukee Tuesday night, according to Phoenix police. The death of Amanda Blaies Rinaldi also left two children without their mother, and her husband behind bars. Anthony Rinaldi worked as a detention officer at the Perryville prison.... "We're devastated. Devastated," said Pamela Blaies, Amanda's mother. Pamela Blaies is having to adjust to hearing the news her daughter had been murdered... Pamela Blaies says her daughter's husband has a violent history. "He's been violent ever since she's known him," Pamela said, adding that he had military training. "He was a sniper. He knew exactly how to fire a gun," she said... Court documents suggest PTSD might have played a part in Tuesday night's shooting. But Pamela Blaies disagreed. "He had issues from his childhood," she said. Pamela Blaies said Rinaldi has always been an angry person. Amanda's two children are with their grandmother. She says they're coping pretty well, and that the 7-year-old said he'll see his mom soon - in heaven. [Full article here]

NAPLES WOMAN KILLED IN ARIZONA TRIED TO FLEE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, FAMILY SAYS
Naples Daily News
By Victoria Macchi, Aisling Swift
Posted December 15, 2011 at 10:23 p.m.
Amanda Blaies-Rinaldi's family desperately tried to get her away from her abusive husband. They encouraged the 28-year-old woman to move from Naples to Arizona, where they lived, to put distance between the couple. "My mom has told her so many times to get away," said her sister Lea Miller, 35. "She kept on saying 'I love him.'... He kept on yelling at her, cussing at her," Miller said. Collier County court records show that in May 2010, Blaies-Rinaldi filed a petition against her "soon-to-be ex-husband" and obtained a temporary order of protection for her and her sons. But it was dismissed when she didn't show up for a hearing... Blaies-Rinaldi's mother said they begged her to leave. She tried to break free. She went to Arizona with her sons, obtained her child care license and ran a day care at home. But Anthony Rinaldi followed. "She was scared of him, but she wanted it to work, like any mother would, for her family," said Tori Anderson, a Naples hairdresser, Blaies-Rinaldi's best friend and godmother to her oldest son. "She said 'If anything happens to me, I want you to know who did it.' She was so strong" Anderson said of Blais-Rinaldi, who worked at Tommy Bahamas and Roy's Restaurant. "She fought and fought for her life and she overcame cancer. This man just took it away.”... The arrest report said Anthony Rinaldi had control issues, a history of domestic violence and violence against children or animals. It lists "possible mental issues, including military PTSD"... Pamela Blaies said that conflicts with the history of domestic violence her daughter suffered. "This is the final thing he did," Pamela Blaies said. "He did it to take her away (because) he hated us all." Pamela Blaies now has custody of the children... [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety lethal fatality fatalities murder jailer guard arizona state politics]

Saturday, December 24, 2011

[FL] Resigned Cocoa Deputy Chief Jones' domestic charge ends in mistrial after 1 juror switches vote to not guilty

Cocoa FL Deputy Chief Bobby Jones (left)
resigned during investigation into a
domestic battery charge against him.

The case of a former deputy police chief who was accused of beating his girlfriend ended Thursday in a mistrial... Prosecutors will weigh whether to retry former Cocoa Deputy Police Chief Bobby Jones for battery after a guilty verdict read in court Thursday was thrown out when a lone juror changed her mind... The defense tried to blame the victim's bruises on her job as a waitress... A homeless man who was working for a nearby thrift shop saw the fight and tried to intervene. "He grabbed her really hard by the hair, nape of her neck like a caveman, drug her down to the thing, dragging her on the asphalt to the car and stuffing her in the car like a bag of potatoes"... The investigation, which included one witness besides the victim, eventually prompted the deputy chief to resign...

PREVIOUS POSTS:
[FL] NOT ARRESTED FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE: Cocoa Deputy Police Chief Bobby Jones - The witness who tried to help Jones' girlfriend as she was being assaulted says his life was threatened... "You need to stand back or I'll kill you. I'll 'f' you up"... The father of the assaulted woman says she has tried to get a protection order. Jones has a wife and kids. Nobody's safe. And despite photographs and a witness, this deputy chief was not arrested.
[FL] Legal trickery? Still no charges, no arrest for alleged public domestic attack by Deputy Chief Bobby Jones - A judge has granted the alleged victim in a dating violence investigation involving Cocoa Deputy Police Chief Bobby Jones a restraining order...
[FL] Assistant Police Chief Bobby Jones resigns after charged with assaulting then-girlfriend - Cocoa Assistant Police Chief Bobby Jones resigned on March 9th, 2011 and will probably avoid a completed investigation report by doing so. Now if he can get the charges dropped, on paper it will be as if it never happened and he will be fully employable again without accountability for any committed crime(s). Poof!

JURY HEARS TESTIMONY IN TRIAL OF EX-COCOA DEPUTY POLICE CHIEF
Florida Today
Dec. 21, 2011
[Excerpts] A jury began hearing testimony today from a woman accusing Cocoa's former deputy police chief of punching and pushing her during a domestic confrontation last year... She described getting out of the car and crossing the street when Jones ran toward her. "He threw me over his shoulder and put me in the front seat...he punched me in the chest, he punched me again in the throat," she told jurors, stopping for a brief moment to compose herself. Jones then left the scene shortly after police arrived. A man spotted the incident and yelled at Jones to stop, the woman testified. Jones, who quit his post earlier this year as second-in-command of the Cocoa Police Department, was charged after the State Attorney's Office issued a summons. Jones was named deputy chief in 2009. The trial began Dec. 19 in County Judge A. B. Majeed's courtroom at the Moore Justice Center in Viera... [Full article here]

VICTIM TESTIFIES IN DEPUTY POLICE CHIEF BATTERY TRIAL
WFTV
Dec. 21, 2011
[Excerpts] Prosecutors say former Cocoa Deputy Police Chief Bobby Jones became jealous after he thought his girlfriend was sleeping with his brother. Jones is facing battery charges for the alleged attack last December. Friday, the defense tried to blame the victim's bruises on her job as a waitress. Prosecutors showed jurors pictures of bruising on her arms where she said she was grabbed, and on her chest where she said she was punched.  But the defense insinuated she would have much more bruising if she was actually punched... [Bobby Jones' former girlfriend C.A.] said the first sign of trouble came when they were leaving an after-hours club and she expressed concern they couldn't find his brother. "He started making comments and accusing me of wanting to sleep with his brother," said [C.A.]. [C.A.] said after he drove her back to her car the dispute turned violent and he punched her in the chest and throat... But Jones' defense attorney questioned how many beers she had that night and whether she remembered everything accurately. “Isn't it true that what you were arguing about is that you wanted to drive home and he didn't want you driving because you had been drinking?” the defense attorney asked. “That is not true," said [C.A.]. A homeless man who was working for a nearby thrift shop saw the fight and tried to intervene. "He grabbed her really hard by the hair, nape of her neck like a caveman, drug her down to the thing, dragging her on the asphalt to the car and stuffing her in the car like a bag of potatoes," the homeless man testified. Jones' defense attorney also challenged the homeless man’s credibility... [Full article here]

EX-COCOA DEPUTY POLICE CHIEF DRAGGED, PUNCHED ME, WOMAN TELLS JURY: Eyewitness testifies of 2010 incident
Florida Today
J.D. Gallop
Dec. 22, 2011
[Excerpts] Bobby Jones, former deputy chief of the Cocoa Police Department, is expected to take the stand in his own defense today to refute claims he dragged and punched his 22-year-old girlfriend during a birthday excursion last year... The trial testimony could make or break the argument from prosecutors that an off-duty Jones, 40, attacked the Indialantic woman in a fit of rage. The investigation, which included one witness besides the victim, eventually prompted the deputy chief to resign... “Bobby became very jealous. … He started making comments, accusing me of wanting to sleep with his brother,” the victim told jurors, her voice at times breaking with emotion. Later, she said, Jones, whom she described as weighing 140 pounds more than her, became angry and forced her into his car. “He was enraged, and he was starting to scare me... He threw me over his shoulder and put me in the front seat. … He punched me in the chest. He punched me again in the throat” ... Defense Attorney Jordan Kramer, who argued that Jones had been concerned the woman was attempting to drive off after drinking, cross-examined her and questioned whether she sought medical attention. “No,” the victim said as jurors, who earlier viewed photos taken that night of red marks on her neck and chest, looked on. The victim, later escorted home by a police officer, admitted she didn’t include several details in the report she wrote in the hours following the incident. “Now, over a year later, you seem to be a having a better recollection over what happened,” Kramer prodded. “I know what happened,” the victim stated... [Full article here]

PROSECUTORS PONDER RETRIAL FOR EX-COCOA DEPUTY POLICE CHIEF
Florida Today
Dec. 23, 2011
[Excerpts] Prosecutors will weigh whether to retry former Cocoa Deputy Police Chief Bobby Jones for battery after a guilty verdict read in court Thursday was thrown out when a lone juror changed her mind. “No,” the woman said twice when asked by County Judge A.B. Majeed if she agreed with the guilty verdict that only minutes before she signed off on with five other jurors. It was an unexpected and dramatic twist that prompted Assistant State Attorney Pat Whitaker to stand, raise his arms in bewilderment and say he had “never had this happen.” Jones was charged with misdemeanor battery after his then-girlfriend,  [C.A.], 22, reported being punched and dragged by the off-duty deputy chief outside of a Melbourne pub Dec. 18, 2010... “The verdict is not a unanimous verdict. I cannot pronounce the defendant guilty in this matter ... a mistrial is granted,” Majeed said after the defense motioned for the trial to be dismissed... Whitaker said a decision on whether to file for a second trial would come later... [Full article here]

DEPUTY CHIEF BEATING TRIAL ENDS IN MISTRIAL: Jurors Fail To Agree On Verdict
WESH
December 22, 2011
[Excerpts] The case of a former deputy police chief who was accused of beating his girlfriend ended Thursday in a mistrial. A six-person jury was deliberating the fate of former Deputy Police Chief Bobby Jones. Jones took the stand in his own defense and said he was merely trying to keep her from driving while intoxicated... The alleged victim testified Wednesday that Jones threw her into his car and punched her because he was jealous of the attention she paid to his brother. Another witness also testified Jones dragged his former girlfriend by her hair... [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence (IPV) abuse law enforcement public safety adultery preferential treatment florida state repeat hx word games terroristic teflon brotherhood]

[FL] OCSO Deputy Dunn arrested on a domestic violence charge




ORANGE CO. DEPUTY FACES DOMESTIC ABUSE CHARGE
WFTV
Thursday, Dec. 22, 2011
[Excerpts] An Orange County deputy sheriff has been relieved from duty after he was arrested on a domestic violence charge, accused of shoving his wife inside their home. Deputy Michael Dunn was released from the Orange County Jail Thursday night... Investigators said Dunn was drinking on Wednesday night when he got into a fight with his wife... According to the arrest report, Dunn's wife got physical first. The report said she pushed Dunn into the garage and shut the door. Dunn said, "Oh that's domestic abuse" and forced his way back through the door... "Michael pushed it open, knocked the door plate and cracked it," the report stated. She said he then "pushed her down with both of his hands on her chest area causing her to fall, and shouted, 'Now that was domestic violence!'" and told her to "go ahead and call 911." The Orange County Sheriff's Office responded to Dunn's home after his wife called 911. They said based on their investigation they determined that there was probable cause to take Dunn into custody and charge him with battery. Dunn lives in the home with his wife, who is a doctor, and their two teenage daughters... The Sheriff's Office said Dunn's credentials and firearms have been confiscated and he has been reassigned to administrative duty. The Orange County Sheriff's Office Professional Standards Section will be conducting an administrative review of the circumstances. [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety cop on doctor alcohol florida state politics]

[NM] Albuquerque police officer who killed dad says he was treated differently than APD officer accused of killing wife

...[Albuquerque Police Officer] Orlando Camacho sued the city and Police Chief Ray Schultz for back pay and to get his job back with APD... In Camacho’s civil lawsuit - he claims he received far different treatment than that meted out to other officers in trouble, among them Levi Chavez, who is accused of murdering his wife [Tera] and faking [her] suicide...

PREVIOUS POST:
[NM] Ex -Officer Camacho acquitted of murder (Will he get his job back?) - ...A district court jury late Friday acquitted for Albuquerque police officer Orlando Camacho in the shooting death of the man he treated as his father... Police found drug paraphernalia and containers with drug residue on them when they searched Camacho's home... The homicide was investigated as a non-officer-involved shooting, with lower priority (although Camacho was in uniform and used his service weapon)... One of Camacho's girlfriends testified that Camacho had physically assaulted her hours before the shooting of Kirk Carroll, that he had pulled out his taser and threatened her with it, and that Camacho had made a veiled terroristic threat towards her and her young son. "I was really scared for my life and my son's life"... it was soon dismissed by District Court Judge Angela Jewell, who said that it "did not meet the burden of proof that Camacho committed an act of domestic violence."

KIRK DEWAYNE CARROLL
Obituary
Published On: Mon JULY 10, 2006
Kirk Dewayne Carroll was born in Albuquerque, NM on August 27, 1957 to Henry Carroll and Jessie Mae Nealy. He is survived by his son Orlando Camacho-Carroll of Albuquerque, New Mexico; his brother... his four sisters... seven nieces; four nephews; and a host of great-nieces, nephews, and cousins...

EX-COP WINS SUIT AGAINST CITY , SORT OF
kasa.com
Nancy Laflin
Thursday, 22 Dec 2011
[Excerpts] Orlando Camacho sued the city and Police Chief Ray Schultz for back pay and to get his job back with APD. Wednesday, a jury ruled in favor of Camacho but he didn't get everything he was asking for. The jury awarded Camacho $6,000, not for back pay but for violating Camacho's civil rights. Jurors ruled the city and Chief Schultz didn't give him due process. City attorneys say Camacho violated several department policies in 2006 when he shot and killed the man he called his father. Camacho fired his service weapon during an argument at the home the men shared. Camacho wasn't working that night, but was wearing his APD uniform. In 2009 Camacho was acquitted of the murder...Even though APD says they will never rehire Camacho, he says he'll keep on fighting to get his old job. He plans to take the issue to court again. [Full article here]

A COUPLE DAYS EARLIER:

FORMER COP BREAKS DOWN DURING TRIAL
Albuquerque Journal
By Scott Sandlin
Tue, Dec 20, 2011
The emotional toll extracted by the death of ex-Albuquerque Police Department officer Orlando Camacho’s father figure on July 4, 2006, was evident Monday as Camacho testified in a civil trial seeking to reclaim his job and damages for his firing. Camacho broke down as he described his father, angry at Camacho, emerging from a back room at the home they shared, kicking him in the groin and trying to wrest away the service revolver strapped at Camacho’s hip... Camacho’s gun discharged, fatally wounding Carroll in the chest. Camacho, now 31, was terminated by APD some seven months before he was indicted on charges of second-degree murder - charges a jury cleared him of two years ago. In Camacho’s civil lawsuit, which a different jury began hearing Monday before District Judge Nan Nash, he claims he received far different treatment than that meted out to other officers in trouble, among them Levi Chavez, who is accused of murdering his wife and faking a suicide. Camacho knew his father was mad at him because an ex-girlfriend had confronted Carroll to give him details of Camacho’s personal relationships. Camacho said he had put on his APD uniform, although he was not on duty at the time, and returned to the home with the idea that he could defuse the situation, but Carroll rushed him... Deputy City Attorney Kathryn Levy told jurors there was no reason for Camacho to be in uniform, carrying his Glock, badge and a Taser, on a day when he wasn’t working and knew his father would be livid about having been lied to. She said the fact that he was acquitted in the criminal case “is not the issue... Police Chief Ray Schultz made the difficult decision to fire Camacho for conduct unbecoming an officer and other charges that are not related to the Internal Affairs probes launched by Carroll’s complaints... [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety lethal fatality fatalities murder repeat hx teflon new mexico state politics]

Friday, December 23, 2011

[WI] "Ignorance is no excuse," says David Thomas, who helped write the IACP's officer-involved domestic violence policy


DAVID R. THOMAS

..."Ignorance is no excuse," said David R. Thomas, an instructor at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, who helped write a model policy for the international association [of Chiefs of Police - IACP]. "If they're willing to look the other way on this type of criminal activity, where does it stop?"... Friends who work in the criminal justice system also tend to believe abusive officers who label their victims crazy or dishonest, according to Thomas. "He's a master manipulator," Thomas said of an abusive officer. "He's a batterer with a PhD"... Police departments that give abusive officers access to their guns need to be aware of that possibility, according to Thomas, of Johns Hopkins. "People think you go on duty and all of the sudden there's a protective shield around you and you're not going to do anything stupid anymore? It's just ignorant," he said... While officers' attitudes about domestic violence in the community have evolved over time, most police around the country still don't take it seriously when the perpetrator is one of their own, according to experts. Handling such accusations the same as any other criminal allegation against police, as Milwaukee does, isn't good enough, experts say. Because responding officers can be biased, one of the goals of a model policy on officer-involved domestic violence is to remove their discretion, said Thomas, who retired from the Police Department in Montgomery County, Md., in 2000. Following written guidelines step by step protects the victim, the investigator and the alleged perpetrator, he said. "If I'm accused of being involved in this activity and I didn't do it, I want a good, clear exhaustive investigation so I can be exonerated," he said... "We should, in law enforcement, be held to a higher standard because we're supposed to enforce the law. ... Otherwise, it's the fox watching the henhouse"...



Source: Police department ignores national standards for officers accused of domestic violence, Milwaukee Journal SentinelBy Gina Barton

To see Journal Sentinel's
BOTH SIDES OF THE LAW
online project, click here.
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety state politics]

[WI][WA] "What good is the Wisconsin policy when it's not mandated that you use it?"

To see Journal Sentinel's
BOTH SIDES OF THE LAW
online project, click here.

Lane Judson, father of Crystal Judson Brame - who was murdered by her Tacoma Washington police chief husband:

"A policy without a law to back it up is just a piece of paper. What good is the Wisconsin policy when it's not mandated that you use it?"...

MURDER BY LAW OFFICERS MET WITH ACTION, INERTIA
[Link to article online - includes photos]
The Journal Sentinel
By Gina Barton
Dec. 22, 2011

In 2003, the police chief of Tacoma, Wash., killed his wife, Crystal Judson Brame, and himself in front of their two young children. The community was shellshocked. A task force of some 80 people - including Washington's attorney general and a state Supreme Court justice - came together to lobby for law and policy changes that would protect the spouses and romantic partners of violent police officers.

In 2007, a sheriff's deputy in Forest County, Wis., killed his estranged girlfriend and five others with his department-issued assault rifle. Then he killed himself.

The community was shellshocked. A task force came together.

That's where the similarities end.

While the State of Washington passed an unprecedented law that requires police departments to enact greater safeguards for victims of officer-involved domestic violence, Wisconsin was left with a model policy that police departments are free to ignore.

"Washington is not unique in terms of the disproportionate power that police have in society," said Barbara Madsen, now chief justice of the Washington state Supreme Court, who co-chaired the task force. "If a victim can't go to the police, where can she go?"

The Washington task force identified gaps in the system that prevented Crystal Judson Brame and others like her from getting the help they needed - gaps that still exist in Wisconsin. They include: Inadequate psychological screening for potential police hires; investigations influenced by the perpetrator or his associates; and a lack of support for victims.

At the Milwaukee Police Department, at least 16 officers on the force as of Oct. 1 had been disciplined after internal investigators concluded they had committed acts of domestic violence, according to a Journal Sentinel investigation published earlier this year. In 18 cases, officers' wives or romantic partners have sought restraining orders - although many were not granted.

At the time of Crystal Brame's death, the Tacoma Police Department's policy on officer-involved domestic violence was similar to one used in Milwaukee today. It consisted of a few paragraphs specific to officers who are also perpetrators. Beyond that, domestic violence incidents within police families were to be treated virtually the same as any other case.

Crystal's death helped the department - and the state - realize they needed a special set of rules for domestic abusers who are also officers, said Tacoma police Capt. Tom Strickland.

"If we have a suspect who is an officer, they are much more dangerous than a non-police officer domestic violence suspect," Strickland said. "Officers can be more conniving, use surveillance techniques and all kinds of other things. They know the law and they are armed."

An abusive officer can evade justice in ways that would be impossible for an average citizen, experts say.

Officers know how to pursue people and physically restrain them - in many cases, without leaving a mark. When they use force, they know how to provide legal justification. For example, the abuser might call 911 himself as a way to bolster a later claim of self-defense.

Friends who work in the criminal justice system tend to believe abusive officers who label their victims crazy or downplay their own actions. Abusive cops know the locations of domestic violence shelters. And victim advocates who work in those shelters are reluctant to side against an officer for fear of losing the department's cooperation in other cases.

"The police may be great at catching abusers and batterers who are not police, who are not people in positions of power," said attorney Debra Hannula, who co-chaired the Washington task force. "When it comes to policing their own, you seem to get away with a lot."

Domestic violence is far more common among the families of police officers than among the rest of the population, according to the U.S. Department of Justice and the National Center for Women and Policing. At least 40% of police families are affected by domestic violence, as opposed to an estimated 10% in other households.

David Brame abused his wife without consequences for years, according to Crystal's parents, Lane and Patty Judson. Despite that abuse and other warning signs, he was also allowed to rise through the ranks of the Tacoma Police Department.

Ten years before Brame married Crystal Judson in 1991, he was hired by the department despite a psychologist's findings he was a potential danger to himself, other officers and the community, according to records obtained by Crystal's parents during a civil suit in the wake of her death.

He was evaluated twice more: the second examiner, whom Brame paid for, deemed him suitable for the job; the third recommended against his hiring.

Early in Brame's career, a woman reported him to internal affairs, alleging he had raped her after a date, leaving his gun on the nightstand to threaten her. Despite investigators' belief that Brame had done it and his admission to another officer, the case was closed as not provable and he was not disciplined, according to court records. The case was not referred to prosecutors for potential charges.

Crystal, who had been an outgoing woman with many friends, started to withdraw shortly after the wedding, her parents said. Brame strictly limited her access to money and monitored her movements, they said. She first called 911 in fear of her husband in 1996. During an argument, Brame gathered up his guns and threatened Crystal and their daughter, then 2.

"He told her, 'A bullet in both your heads would take care of both of you,' " Lane Judson said.

The police department in the Washington town where they lived, Gig Harbor, responded. Officers there simply forwarded the information to the neighboring Tacoma police, where Brame was a sergeant, Lane Judson said.

"Nothing came of it," he said.

A few weeks later, Brame was the one to call the Gig Harbor police, claiming that Crystal - a foot shorter and 75 pounds lighter - had attacked him. He backed off when an officer told him he would have to testify in order for the case to go forward, her parents said.

In 1997, Crystal went to see a lawyer about a divorce. In the middle of the meeting, Brame came in and told the lawyer, who had done some work for Tacoma police, that Crystal was crazy. She gave up on the idea of divorce a few weeks later, when she realized she was pregnant with their second child, her parents said.

In 2001, Brame was named police chief.

When Crystal sought help from a domestic violence advocacy group, they told her they couldn't help her because of her husband's position. When she called Tacoma's assistant chief to report that Brame threatened her life, the assistant chief took four pages of notes, then turned them over to Brame, her parents later learned.

"She said, 'You know, Dad, I feel like I'm fighting the whole city of Tacoma,' " her father recalled.

In February 2003, Brame pointed a gun at his wife's head and told her, "Accidents happen," according to her father.

Crystal moved out and filed for divorce.

The last time Patty Judson spoke with her daughter was April 26, 2003. Crystal was on her way back from a parenting class, required by the State of Washington for divorcing couples with children.

She usually didn't drive alone.

Although her mother warned her against it, Crystal stopped at a strip mall to get some cough drops, maybe go tanning. No one knows for sure if Brame showed up in the same parking lot by coincidence or if he had followed her there.

Brame locked his children in the car. Then he pulled his Police Department gun out of his pocket and headed across the parking lot toward his wife.

Eight-year-old Haley told her little brother to be quiet and opened the car door. She had to save her mother, she would later tell her grandmother. She had to call for help.

The car alarm blared.

And then, the shots rang out.

Questioned change

Despite Crystal's death and the systemic problems it revealed, police agencies in Washington questioned the necessity for change, Madsen said. They tried to heap all the blame for Crystal's death on Brame, ignoring the holes in the system that allowed it to happen. They also complained about the cost, both of changing their procedures and of training officers.

It became clear fairly quickly that unless there was a law requiring departments to improve, they probably wouldn't, Madsen said.

"They were not going to do it anyway," she said. "Not with that attitude."

The task force Madsen helped lead successfully lobbied for legislation that requires every police agency in Washington to adopt and enforce a stand-alone policy on officer-involved domestic violence.

At a minimum, each policy must lay out protocols for screening potential police hires for domestic incidents; responding to reports of domestic violence by police officers; sharing information about those reports with other agencies; maintaining independence during the investigations; disciplining officers; controlling officers' access to weapons; and supporting victims.

Departments may adopt the state's model policy or expand on it with their own solutions.

For example, as a way to support victims, the Tacoma Police Department created the position of family violence coordinator. The coordinator's job is to help victims understand what is going on with the investigation and to keep them safe by connecting them with services, said Strickland, who held the position for five years.

"We do care about our families," he said. "We are going to hold our people accountable if they step over the line. We don't want anything else terrible to happen, and we're going to do whatever we can to stop it."

The penalty for failure to enact an acceptable policy under the law is decertification by the state, Madsen said. Within three years of the law's passage, 98.5% of law enforcement agencies had written policies and trained their officers on how to comply.

Washington state Sen. Debbie Regala (D-Tacoma), who championed the legislation, said it prevents authorities from ignoring officer-involved domestic violence.

"Sometimes people see these things going on and pretend they don't know about it because they really don't want to address it," she said. "This (law) sees that it's addressed, and addressed before it escalates to something like the murder of Crystal."

Wisconsin legislation

In Wisconsin - even after the 2007 mass murder in Crandon and an incident around the same time in which a Wausau police officer seriously injured his wife by crashing their car into a concrete bridge - a bill that would have required psychological screening for potential police hires didn't pass.

Some smaller departments complained it was too expensive, according to an aide to state Sen. Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay), who co-sponsored the bill.

While the two incidents resulted in the drafting of a statewide policy on officer-involved domestic violence, there was no discussion about passing a law that would require departments to use it, said Patti Seger, executive director of the Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

Seger said she and the others who helped write the policy hoped departments would adopt it because it was endorsed by the state Department of Justice's Law Enforcement Standards Board.

The 104-page policy contains an educational component that discusses the causes of the problem and its impact on the community. It gives clear, step-by-step instructions for investigations, including lists of who should be called to the scene and what kinds of paperwork should be completed. The policy also addresses how departments should deal with abusive officers.

The Department of Justice convened two training sessions in 2009, shortly after the policy was approved by the standards board, according to spokeswoman Dana Brueck. Participants included 131 people representing 69 law enforcement agencies, including nine from the Milwaukee Police Department. In addition, the state's Office of Justice Assistance has provided training for approximately 200 people.

But no one tracks how many departments have adopted the policy.

"A policy without a law to back it up is just a piece of paper," said Lane Judson. "What good is the Wisconsin policy when it's not mandated that you use it?"

The assistant chief who until recently oversaw officer performance and discipline at the Milwaukee Police Department, Darryl Winston, said in May he had not read the state's model policy.

At a November meeting with Journal Sentinel editors and reporters, Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn said the policy was too long and too detailed.

"It has everything from park the car, turn off the car, put the keys in your pocket, you know?" he said.

Instead, when a complaint of domestic violence is lodged against a Milwaukee police officer, investigators follow a 32-page general policy on domestic violence that applies to both civilians and police officers, Flynn said. Four paragraphs apply specifically to officers.

The key difference is that when the perpetrator is a cop, the responding officer is required to notify a supervisor, he said.

"The chain of command has got to get involved," Flynn said. "Everything else that affects that officer involved in domestic violence is the exact same thing that affects every other citizen."

Flynn argued his department meets or exceeds national standards for dealing with abusive officers.

But he said he doesn't have a problem with allowing officers who have committed acts of domestic violence to investigate it - a direct contradiction to the recommendations in the state's model policy.

That includes officers such as Robert Velez, who was arrested for domestic violence battery, battery while armed and misconduct in public office in 2001 after he used his badge to track down his wife, who had gone to a hotel to escape his abuse, according to internal-affairs records.

Velez lied to hotel staff, telling them he was working a drug investigation undercover. When he got to the room, Velez punched his wife in the face and beat the man who was there with her, the records say. Velez ultimately pleaded no contest to misdemeanor battery for beating the man. He served a year of probation and spent three days in jail. He was suspended from the department for three days.

Shortly after Velez's history was first reported as part of the newspaper's "Both Sides of the Law" series in October, he contacted a reporter via Facebook to say he and his wife have saved their 24-year marriage and raised two sons, who are now in college. He did not reply to requests for an interview.

Velez is allowed to respond when battered women call for help, records show.

Not allowing him - or the 15 other officers who have been disciplined after internal investigators determined they committed acts of domestic violence - to respond to such calls would be a "slippery slope," said Flynn.

"The fact that they have been accused of domestic violence or had an argument with their wife that the neighbors called (police) on, or what have you, they're still expected to do their jobs and enforce the law," Flynn said. "The same is true of those who have driven through speed traps. That doesn't disqualify them from writing speeding tickets. . . . They are police officers. We expect them to do their duty."

Comparing domestic violence with speeding tells victims the department isn't taking them seriously, said Seger, head of the state's anti-domestic violence coalition.

"We know that domestic violence always has the consequences of intimidating, threatening scaring, hurting and sometimes killing another person," she said. "It is very different."
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety lethal fatality fatalities murder state politics]


Thursday, December 22, 2011

[AR] 6'5", 335lb LRPD Police Officer Bracey said to have face-punched wife in front of the kids

LR POLICE OFFICER CHARGED WITH WIFE'S ASSAULT SURRENDERS
arkansasmatters.com
Reported by: KARK 4 News
Monday, December 12 2011
[Excerpts] A Little Rock Police officer accused of hitting his wife Friday night has surrendered. Officer John Bracey, 47, is charged with assault of a family member... Mrs. Bracey said the couple was arguing about their 14-year-old son going hunting when Mr. Bracey broke her laptop by tossing it into a door and she then threw his laptop onto the floor. Mary Bracey told officers after her husband accused she and their son of being disrespectful, he then grabbed her by the neck, threw her on a couch, held her down and punched her in the eye with a closed fist. The son and the couple's 8-year-old daughter ran outside at that point, according to the incident report, and Bracey let his wife go while he tried to get them back inside before he left the house. Investigating officers tried unsuccessfully to reach Bracey on his cell phone and then removed his police issue gear from the Bracey home before taking his wife downtown for questioning. Officer Bracey has been with the Little Rock Police Department since September 1995... [Full article here]

UPDATE: LRPD OFFICER PLEADS NOT GUILTY AFTER REPORTEDLY PUNCHING WIFE
Fox16
Updated: 12/13 3:41 pm Published: 12/12 4:01 pm
[Excerpts] The Little Rock Police Officer accused of punching his wife in a domestic dispute Friday has plead not guilty. His next court date has been set for February 14, 2012... The police report lists John Bracey as being 6’5” and 335 pounds. Police say that Bracey has been with the department for 16 years. Police say Officer Bracey turned himself in with his attorney on Monday. He has been charged with aggravated assault on a household member... the alleged assault took place in front of their son and 8-year-old daughter... [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety children arkansas state politics]

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

[MA] Retired Officer Brosnahan killed his wife’s mother and her two brothers, then himself

...A family member confirmed that the shooter [retired Bedford police officer John “Jack” Brosnahan] killed three members of his wife’s family. He killed his wife’s mother [Mary Pizzuto] and her two brothers [Robert and Patrick Pizzuto]... "This is another horrific example of domestic violence, a familial incident leading to three dead persons in that house"...  Police said the murders were a domestic incident and an ongoing dispute led to the killings... Brosnahan was employed by the Bedford Police Department for 28 years and also served as the police prosecutor at Concord District Court. Upon his retirement in January 2000, Brosnahan was assigned to the detective bureau... after he retired he worked as a federal court officer... 

MARY A. (FEROLITO) PIZZUTO Obituary and Guestbook
ROBERT J. PIZZUTO Obituary and Guestbook
PATRICK P. PIZZUTO  Obituary and Guestbook

FAMILY IN CAMBRIDGE SHOOTING TRAGEDY MOURNED
bostonherald.com
By Natalie Sherman
Thursday, December 15, 2011
[Excerpts] The senseless killings of two brothers gunned down with their elderly mother in Cambridge last week caused even the family priest to doubt his faith, he admitted... Robert Pizzuto, 52, and Patrick Pizzuto, 63, were shot Dec. 9 with Mary Pizzuto, 91, by her son-in-law, former Bedford cop Jack Brosnahan, 67, who then shot himself... “It’s a sad day for everyone involved,” Robert Pizzuto Jr. said at his father’s funeral. “But seeing everyone here today, it’s hard for me to feel sad. It’s hard for me to feel anything but proud. These were two great men.” Robert Jr. recalled his father as an expert storyteller. Patrick had just celebrated his 40th wedding anniversary in November. Daughter Anne Boyle recalled how her father, the retired owner of Waltham Fruit Co., was once kicked out of a grocery store for taking pictures of the produce and how he taught his children to be competitive over board games, never letting them win. “He would tell me never to grow up, and I would laugh, and only now do I know what he meant”... [Full article here]

FAMILY, FRIENDS MOURN BROTHERS KILLED IN CAMBRIDGE TRIPLE MURDER
Wicked Local Cambridge
By Scott Wachtler
Posted Dec 14, 2011
[Excerpts] Hundreds filled the pews of Sacred Heart Church in Watertown to pay their last respects to two brothers who were killed in last week’s triple homicide in Cambridge. Brothers Patrick, 63, and Robert Pizzuto, 52, along with their mother Mary Pizzuto, 91, were shot and killed last Friday by their in-law, retired Bedford police officer John “Jack” Brosnahan, 67, who was later found dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound in Brighton... The Rev. Joseph Baggetta, a family friend, gave the eulogy for the two brothers, and admitted that when he heard the news he had no idea what he could say that would bring the family together... Baggetta encouraged those in mourning to remember Robert, who lived in Arlington, and Patrick, who lived in Lexington and Hull, and remember the way they lived their lives. The brothers were best known for their Cambridge business, Waltham Fruit Company... [Full article here]

THREE PEOPLE FATALLY SHOT IN CAMBRIDGE: Former Bedford police officer shot 3 relatives and then himself, authorities say
Boston Globe
By Derek J. Anderson, Taylor M. Miles and and Matt Byrne
December 10, 2011
[Excerpts] Three people were shot and killed in a domestic incident in Cambridge yesterday, and the suspect committed suicide hours later, the Middlesex district attorney’s office said. Police were called to 161 Grove St. at approximately 6:40 p.m. and discovered three adults, all related, dead of gunshot wounds in the home in what District Attorney Gerald T. Leone Jr. referred to as a domestic violence case. “The unfortunate reality after they [authorities] arrived was that they found three people dead in the house evidencing obvious gunshot wounds,’’ Leone said. “This is another horrific example of domestic violence, a familial incident leading to three dead persons in that house.’’ Hours later, police found the suspect’s body with a self-inflicted gunshot wound in the Charles River near 1400 Soldiers Field Road in Brighton... More than a dozen police vehicles had congregated around the scene by the water’s edge. A white sheet covered the body... At the Grove Street scene last night, a woman arrived at the one-story brick home, which was blocked off with yellow crime tape, and was crying hysterically as she talked to police... [Full article here]

FAMILY GATHERED TO REMEMBER FOUR DEAD IN CAMBRIDGE: Retired Bedford police officer kills three, then himself
wickedlocal.com
By David L. Harris and Auditi Guha
Posted Dec 15, 2011
[Excerpts] ...Brothers Patrick Pizzuto Jr., 63 and Robert Pizzuto Sr., 52 and their mother Mary Pizzuto, 91, were shot and killed by retired Bedford police officer John "Jack" Brosnahan... The Pizzutos murdered were Brosnahan’s brothers-in-law and mother-in law. A source told our news partner WCVB that an argument had broken out while family members were discussing the care of Brosnahan’s mother-in-law... Police spokesman Dan Riviello confirmed that Brosnahan had a valid license to carry, which he recently renewed through the Cambridge Police Department... On Friday night, relatives overcome with grief were seen near the house. Heavily armed police officers were seen outside the one-and-a-half story ranch home as a flood of reporters stood across the street... Brosnahan was employed by the Bedford Police Department for 28 years and also served as the police prosecutor at Concord District Court. Upon his retirement in January 2000, Brosnahan was assigned to the detective bureau... [Full article here]

INVESTIGATION BEGINS IN CAMBRIDGE MURDER, SUICIDE
whdh.com
Posted: 12/10/11
[Excerpts] ...Family members were devastated after hearing about the triple shooting. A family member confirmed that the shooter killed three members of his wife’s family. He killed his wife’s mother and her two brothers. The wife of one of the brothers said that there was an ongoing disagreement among the family members but she said that she never imagined that they were in mortal danger. She said that they knew the shooter had issues that caused him to be volatile but she wouldn’t have thought he would use deadly force. “Everybody in the neighborhood is in shock,” said Vinnie Borelli, a family friend... Those who worked with the retired police officer during his 28 years of service said he was a great man and that the crime was incredibly shocking news. They said Brosnahan was a ‘straight-laced’ patrolman who was friendly and well-liked. Brosnahan acted as a liaison between the police department and the Middlesex County prosecutors and that after he retired he worked as a federal court officer... Police said the murders were a domestic incident and an ongoing dispute led to the killings... [Full article here]
[police officer involved domestic violence oidv intimate partner violence ipv abuse law enforcement public safety lethal fatality fatalities murder familicide triple murder suicide massachusttes state politics]