MIDWEST CITY OK June 19 2013 — A man was shot and killed by a Midwest City police officer Monday afternoon after holding a toddler hostage for more than half an hour inside a grocery store, authorities said.
No names were released Monday.
About 3:10 p.m., a man walked into the dairy section of the Walmart Market, 7520 E Reno Ave., grabbed a 2-year-old girl and held her at knife point, Midwest City Assistant Police Chief Sid Porter said.
The store was evacuated, and officers attempted to get the child from the man, who made unintelligible demands before he held the knife to her throat and began a countdown, at the end of which he pledged to kill the girl, Porter said. Police said there was no connection between the man, the girl or her mother.
The officer fired one shot, which struck and killed the man. The girl was not hurt and was returned safely to her mother, Porter said.
“The officer had no choice. We don’t want anything to happen to an innocent bystander,” he said.
Porter said it was too early in the investigation to determine whether the man had any past criminal activity or mental health issues.
“It sounds like the officer saved the child’s life,” said Police Chief Brandon Clabes, who was out of state when the shooting occurred.
The store reopened for business Monday evening.
POLK COUNTY, Fla. – June 19 2013
Former Part-Owner of Litigation Funding Company Admits Defrauding Business Partners www.privateofficer.com
NEWARK, NJ June 19 2013—The former part-owner and underwriter for New York-based litigation funding company The Law Funder LLC admitted today in Newark federal court to participating in a secret kickback scheme that defrauded his former business partners of approximately $869,492, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.
Mathew Sheldon, 39, of New York, pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Dennis M. Cavanaugh to a superseding information charging him with conspiracy to commit wire fraud through the deprivation of honest services.
According to documents filed in this case and statements in court:
The Law Funder, which extends loans to plaintiffs in pending civil litigation, did business with Montclair Funding Group LLC (“MFG”)—at one time headquartered in Union City, New Jersey—and its owner Rory Donadio, 43, of New York. MFG was a broker between plaintiffs seeking advances against potential recoveries in pending litigation and private entities such as Law Funder. In exchange for a broker’s fee, MFG would, among other things, gather necessary information and documents in support of funding opportunities so Law Funder could evaluate whether to fund a case and for how much. Sheldon was a 25 percent owner in Law Funder and supervised the underwriting process for the company.
Sheldon admitted that from approximately February 2005 through July 2009, he conspired with Donadio to design and execute a secret kickback scheme. Sheldon would offer certain of Law Funder’s investment opportunities to MFG in exchange for personally receiving a portion of each broker’s commission Law Funder paid MFG. Sheldon and Donadio agreed to conceal their fee-splitting arrangement from Law Funder and Sheldon’s three partners. The kickback scheme resulted in approximately $869,492 in fraudulent payments to Sheldon, which were paid by wire transfer and other means.
Sheldon also admitted that he and Donadio concealed the scheme by, among other methods, using code such as “Giants” or the letter “G” in records referring to related transactions. He acknowledged he regularly communicated with Donadio to identify the coded transactions and calculate the amount payable to Sheldon pursuant to the kickback scheme.
The conspiracy count to which Sheldon pleaded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine or twice the gross amount of pecuniary gain or loss resulting from the offense. Sentencing is scheduled for October 7, 2013.
Donadio also has pleaded guilty in connection with the scheme and awaits sentencing.
U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Aaron T. Ford in Newark, and inspectors of the United States Postal Inspection Service, Newark Division, under the direction of Maria L. Kelokates, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joseph B. Shumofsky, Mala Ahuja Harker, and Jenny Kramer of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Economic Crimes Unit and Evan Weitz of the office’s Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Unit.
This case was brought in coordination with President Barack Obama’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force. The task force was established to wage an aggressive, coordinated, and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, and state and local partners, it is the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory, and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud. Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state, and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets; and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions, and other organizations. Over the past three fiscal years, the Justice Department has filed nearly 10,000 financial fraud cases against nearly 15,000 defendants including more than 2,900 mortgage fraud defendants. For more information on the task force, please visit http://www.stopfraud.gov.
Atlanta GA June 19 2013 Two Atlanta officers caught on video punching a suspect have now lost their certification to work as police officers.
Channel 2 Action News first exposed cellphone video of the incident in April, when one of those officers won his job back on appeal.
Now, Georgia’s Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Council has voted to revoke both officers’ certification.
“That’s about as serious as it gets,” said POST Executive Director Ken Vance. “I think this shows that POST works.”
The officers now have 30 days to appeal that revocation. Under POST rules, they are allowed to keep working while they wait. The process can sometimes take years to resolve.
“To this very day, I’m still scared,” said Clemmin Davis, upon learning the officers in the video were wearing badges again.
Davis was the man being punched by them.
“I’m little, you know, look at me. I don’t weigh that much, and they did me like that. I just thought I was going to lose my life,” said Davis.
He was driving his girlfriend’s car in southwest Atlanta, when he got pulled over for an expired tag. He said he got worried when his passengers ran from the car.
“At that point I was scared. I didn’t know what to do or if he left weapons or drugs or anything in the vehicle,” Davis said.
He ran also and collapsed in nearby woods.
“They were just kicking me, you know, just beating me. I was trying to give up my hands as you could hear in the background,” said Davis.
He’s thankful a passerby thought to record the incident on a cellphone.
Officer Brian Thomas admitted repeatedly kicking Davis, and resigned while under investigation. Officer Joshua Lowery was suspended for two days.
Officer Nicholas Dimauro, seen punching Davis several times, was fired.
“If I had to make the same decision, I’d make it again,” Atlanta Police Chief George Turner told Channel 2 investigative reporter Jodie Fleischer. “I believe the officers could have handled that situation completely different.”
Turner said he takes termination very seriously, and considered Dimauro’s history with the department.
“There were multiple disciplinary issues that were in his file and that was one of the main reasons that we came to that conclusion,” said Turner, “And obviously, the actions of this particular case was pretty egregious.”
But earlier this year, the city’s civil service review board forced Turner to rehire Dimauro, despite 10 prior unnecessary force complaints the board never saw. In the incident prior to the beating, the department’s Office of Professional Standards investigators recommended terminating Dimauro, but that punishment was later reduced.
Records show the department recommended firing Thomas four different times prior to the beating; in each case he, too, received a lesser punishment.
“I absolutely agree with giving people due process rights, but it looks like in some instances, they have had more bites at the apple than may be deserved,” said Vance.
This is the second time POST has revoked Thomas. In a prior case, he appealed and made a deal for two years of POST probation instead, after giving a bulletproof vest to a criminal. Thomas has also been in trouble for domestic violence and lying.
His lengthy history did not stop Clark Atlanta University’s police department from hiring Thomas as an officer while he was under POST investigation. The department’s deputy chief said Thomas has already been terminated.
“It’s going to be real hard for him to get a third chance, real hard,” said Vance.
An Atlanta police representative said Chief Turner is waiting for official notification from POST before taking any additional action against Dimauro.
“How can you possibly justify allowing criminals patrolling the streets with a badge and a gun?” quipped attorney Mark Bullman, who filed a civil case against the city on Davis’ behalf.
They support POST’s decision to get Dimauro and Thomas off the streets.
“Of course it’s a good thing. It’s safer for the people in Atlanta,” said Bullman.
Davis just hopes this time, the punishment sticks.
“They’re supposed to be here to serve and protect us, not harm us,” said Davis.
U.S. Attorney’s Office
New Haven CT June 19 2013
Deirdre M. Daly, Acting United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, and Kimberly K. Mertz, Special Agent in Charge of the New Haven Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, announced that Jonathan Gracia, 24, formerly of Middletown, waived his right to indictment and pleaded guilty today before United States Magistrate Judge Thomas P. Smith in Hartford to one count of wire fraud stemming from an investment fraud scheme.
According to court documents and statements made in court, Gracia falsely told friends and acquaintances that he was developing a website for which he had potential buyers and that he had developed an app for the iPhone and then solicited investments and loans from his victims in connection with both of these purported ventures. Gracia regularly told the victims that they would receive outsized returns on their investments. As part of the scheme, Gracia created bogus documents to deceive his victims, including fake checks, bogus bank account statements, and a letter that he created on what appeared to be the letterhead of a prominent Connecticut hedge fund management company. Through this scheme, Gracia defrauded his victims of at least $200,000.
Gracia is scheduled to be sentenced by United States District Judge Vanessa L. Bryant on September 10, 2013, at which time he faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years.
Gracia has been detained since his arrest on March 18, 2013.
This matter is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with the assistance of the Branford and Stamford Police Departments. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Paul A. Murphy.
In December 2010, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and several law enforcement and regulatory partners announced the formation of the Connecticut Securities, Commodities and Investor Fraud Task Force, which is investigating matters relating to insider trading, market manipulation, Ponzi schemes, investor fraud, financial statement fraud, violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and embezzlement. The task force includes representatives from the U.S. Attorney’s Office; Federal Bureau of Investigation; Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation; U.S. Secret Service; U.S. Postal Inspection Service; U.S. Department of Justice’s Criminal Division, Fraud Section and Antitrust Division; U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC); U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC); Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP); Office of the Chief State’s Attorney; State of Connecticut Department of Banking; Greenwich Police Department; and Stamford Police Department.
Citizens are encouraged to report any financial fraud schemes by calling, toll-free, 855-236-9740, or by sending an e-mail to email@example.com.
Today’s announcement is part of efforts underway by President Obama’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force (FFETF), which was created in November 2009 to wage an aggressive, coordinated, and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. attorneys’ offices, and state and local partners, it is the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory, and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud. Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state, and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets; and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions, and other organizations. Over the past three fiscal years, the Justice Department has filed more than 10,000 financial fraud cases against nearly 15,000 defendants including more than 2,700 mortgage fraud defendants. To report financial fraud crimes, and to learn more about the President’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force, please visit http://www.stopfraud.gov.