Joffre Viteri, 44, of Westbury, was walking a patron out of Romelia Sabor Latino Seaford Restaurant on Union Avenue at closing time when an argument escalated into a fight at 4 a.m., police said.
Viteri struck the 28-year-old victim with a baton, causing a laceration to his head, when a 36-year-old man intervened and was pepper-sprayed by Viteri, police said. Another security guard, 52-year-old Robert Giscombe of Westbury, ran outside to help Viteri when Giscombe pulled his gun fired one round, striking the 36-year-old victim in the upper left leg, police said.
Both victims were taken to Nassau University Medical Center for treatment.
First Squad detectives charged Viteri and Giscombe with assault and criminal possession of a weapon. Giscombe was additionally charged with criminal use of a firearm and unlawful wearing of a body vest.
They will be arraigned Tuesday at First District Court in Hempstead
Source:Long Island Press
Dallas TX Aug 10 2010 A Dallas woman was arrested Saturday night on charges that she left three young children in her car while she shopped with a fourth child, according to police documents.
Elizabeth Sanchez , 28, is accused of leaving the children, ages 2, 4 and 7, inside a red Chrysler 300 in the parking lot of a shopping center in the 3400 block of West Illinois Avenue near South Westmoreland Road about 7:50 p.m. They were in the car alone with the windows up and the engine off for at least 15 minutes while the temperature was about 96 degrees, police documents said.
A security guard who spotted the children in the car went into nearby stores and shouted for someone to claim the children, police said. Sanchez came out of a store and got into her car. A witness blocked her from leaving until police arrived and arrested her, the documents said. The children did not appear to be injured, the documents said.
Sanchez faces three charges of child endangerment. She posted $4,500 bond and was released from the Dallas County Jail on Sunday afternoon, officials said.
Source:Dallas Morning News
VENICE FLA Aug 10 2010— A parking dispute escalated to assault, after a woman allegedly bumped a security guard with her car when he told her to she couldn’t park in a spot reserved for buses.
Judith Mattison, 51, was arrested Friday night for allegedly hitting a Wackenhut security guard in the leg with her car after he told her she couldn’t park her car in the bus space at the Venice Train Depot on Seaboard Avenue.
The security guard, Matthew Scott, called police and Mattison sped away, according to a police report.
Venice Police found Mattison walking near her home in the 900 block of Groveland Avenue and arrested her for assault with a deadly weapon and resisting arrest. She reportedly smelled of alcohol and resisted arrest after being taken to an area hospital for medical clearance before being booked into Sarasota County jail.
She was released Saturday afternoon on a $10,750 bond.
Former Coosa County Sheriff Rickey Owens faced eight counts of using his office for personal gain. Owens pleaded guilty to six of those charges, and is set to be sentenced Sept. 27, according to circuit clerk Jeff Wood.
According to a press release from the Alabama Attorney General’s Office, which prosecuted Owens, the former sheriff entered a blind plea of his guilt to six charges that he intentionally used his public position as sheriff for illegal personal gain.
A blind plea means the defendant pleads guilty without any agreement for prosecutors to recommend a particular punishment.
He admitted he transferred funds from the sheriff’s office work release fund into his personal “nutrition” fund, where Owens kept funds for feeding prisoners in the jail. Under state law, sheriffs have been allowed to keep for themselves leftover money from the jail food or “nutrition” funds, but not from other sheriff’s office funds such as the work release fund. Owens further admitted he received $30,250 from donations totaling $41,350 that were made from official law enforcement funds through the Alabama Sheriff’s Association to two charities: “Sistah 2 Sistah” and “Family Advocacy Community and Educational Services.” Both charities fully cooperated with the investigation.
Owens was sheriff of Coosa County from January 2004 through January 2007. He was defeated for re-election in November 2006. A subsequent audit by the Alabama Examiners of Public Accounts identified $62,592 in unauthorized expenditures.
The Attorney General’s Office presented evidence to a Coosa County grand jury on Oct. 28, 2009, resulting in Owens’ indictment. Upon his conviction today, he faces a maximum penalty of 2 to 20 years in prison for each of the six charges, which are Class B felonies.
In other pleas Monday, three men pleaded guilty to murder in the 15-year-old Lay Dam murders case, and another man pleaded guilty to manslaughter in a stabbing case in Goodwater.
In the Lay Dam case, three men were each charged with two counts of murder and one count of attempted murder. L.C. Collins Jr. of Gadsden and Mickie Wayne Collins of Attalla were each sentenced to 25 years on each charge. Charles Richard Tooley of Navarre, Fla., was sentenced to life on each charge. In that case, three men were bound and set on fire in a cabin in a rural area.
Michael Stowe pleaded guilty to manslaughter in a Goodwater case in which a woman died after being stabbed. Stowe was sentenced to 20 years.
Source:The Daily Home
Atlanta GA Aug 10 2010 A DeKalb County principal is recovering from a broken arm after being robbed on the first day of school.
Rita Harper-Hastings was attacked around 6:45 a.m. as she was getting out of her car outside Stone Mill Elementary School in Stone Mountain. The suspect struck the principal and fled with her purse, cell phone and wallet, said Robert Moseley, deputy chief superintendent of operations.
Officers searched the area and found the teenage suspect attempting to break into a nearby home, said Robert Moseley, deputy chief superintendent of operations. The juvenile is charged with aggravated battery, robbery by force and burglary.
Harper-Hastings was taken to DeKalb Medical Center, where she was treated for a broken arm, bump on the head and several bruises. She has since been released and expects to return to school in a few days, Moseley said.
A school resource officer will be assigned to the school starting Tuesday morning. The district sent a letter to parents about the robbery and distributed safety tips to all school employees, Moseley said.
McALLEN, Texas Aug 10 2010 — South Texas authorities have arrested an off-duty U.S. customs officer suspected of fatally shooting a bar owner with his government-issue handgun early Monday.
The officer, whom authorities did not identify pending his arraignment, is accused of shooting 48-year-old Fermin Limon, owner of Punto 3 Night Club in Mission.
The officer was visiting the bar with his brother and wife, said Hidalgo County Sheriff Lupe Trevino.
Bouncers threw the officer and his brother out of the bar after they got into an altercation with another man, but the fight continued outside, Trevino said.
He said the officer grabbed the weapon from his truck and the bouncers tried to wrestle it away.
The officer told investigators that he thought he saw a gun and feared he would be shot, so he shot Limon – who had come outside to calm the situation – in the chest and leg. A state trooper arrived shortly after and held the officer until deputies arrived, Trevino said.
Initially, Trevino said witness statements did not support the officer’s story and that no weapon was found. Later Monday, the sheriff said a “very reliable and credible” witness told investigators that Limon had a gun and pointed it at the officer but did not fire. The gun was later handed to someone else who fired back at the officer, Trevino said. Deputies were still looking for that shooter and the gun.
Trevino had said he expected murder charges to be brought against the officer, but the new witness statement would likely change that.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman Felix Garza said in a prepared statement that the agency would defer all questions about the incident to the sheriff’s office but would also conduct its own review. The officer was expected to be arraigned later Monday or Tuesday.
MILWAUKEE WI Aug 10 2010 — Law enforcement and local governments are scrambling to shut down a shadow industry that has grown up around the booming cash-for-gold business nationwide: thieves are snatching jewelry, then converting it into a quick payday at the shops.
Thousands of shops have opened to take advantage of high gold prices and hard economic times, and police in some cities have noticed an uptick in burglaries and thefts.
“Law enforcement is just swamped,” said Maureen Walter of the State Police in Maryland. “Business is booming. I guess that’s a good indication of how bad the economy is; for the most part these dealers are very, very busy.”
Concerned about a growing criminal trade, Milwaukee passed an ordinance this summer to help police spot stolen jewelry being sold before it was too late to recover. Other cities are rushing to take similar measures, finding that the usual methods for tracking stolen goods weren’t coping with the modern day gold rush.
Gold buying businesses began proliferating when prices started rising in 2005, reaching more than $1,000 an ounce in 2009 and around $1,200 now. “Cash for Gold” billboards cropped up along highways, TV commercials urged watchers to mail in their gold for money and exchanges opened in unusual places like liquor stores and hair salons.
In Milwaukee alone, the number of businesses licensed to buy jewelry increased from 16 in 2007 to 59 last year. In Maryland, one of the states revising its enforcement, licensed vendors of precious metals more than doubled in the last two years to 545. The businesses included not only shops but gold-buying events at hotels or Tupperware-like parties in homes.
Local authorities couldn’t keep track of all the precious metals changing hands, and discovered that not all the sellers were people with jewelry they no longer wanted.
Police here said they caught several thieves and drug addicts who confirmed they were stealing jewelry to sell to the shops. No comprehensive statistics on gold or jewelry thefts nationwide are available, but burglaries increased about 4 percent overall in Milwaukee from 2007 to 2009, while all other crimes decreased — a pattern investigators linked in part to stolen gold.
Investigations last year at six shops found $75,000 in stolen jewelry and led to the clearing of 16 burglaries, said Milwaukee police officer Glenn Podlesnik. The city fined the shops about $64,000 for failing to keep required records on sales.
Police in Georgia and North Carolina recently broke up a large burglary ring that was targeting gold and jewelry, said Mac Abercrombie, a detective in Douglasville, Ga. Six suspects were arrested in Georgia and at least 30 other persons are suspected of involvement.
In Anne Arundel County, Md., east of Washington, D.C., arrests for stolen goods sales at gold shops and pawn shops rose 200 percent from 2007 to 2008.
Authorities say the gold sales overwhelmed anti-crime record keeping requirements that were designed for pawn shops. Clerks were required to record information about the sellers and items sold but it often wasn’t entered into a law enforcement database for weeks. Even when there was a required holding period for items bought, the jewelry often had been resold or melted down to make new precious objects before police caught up.
Gold shop owners insist they are merely providing a legitimate service for customers in hard times, and shouldn’t be blamed for the crimes.
“We opened the store and we had two people sitting outside, ‘Oh, we want to sell some gold,’” said Firdous Chandani, owner of Reflections Jewelry in Milwaukee. He said his shop has been buying about 350 grams of gold a day from people eager to take advantage of the high prices.
In July, the Milwaukee Common Council voted to require all gold-buying shops to electronically submit the seller’s name and photo to police, along with a photo of the items sold. Last fall, Maryland passed a similar measure and on Oct. 1 will require buyers to have a fixed location. Last year, Florida started requiring mail-in gold-buying companies to put sales information on a database accessible to law enforcement.
The accelerated identification reporting in a Milwaukee suburb, Greenfield, helped produce a surprise recently for an East Troy woman. A thief had taken jewelry from Lynne Steren’s home, including her deceased husband’s wedding rings, to two gold buying shops. Police not only recovered some of the items but had the name, address and photo of the man who had sold them: her stepdaughter’s boyfriend, Patrick Brhely, 23. Brhely was sentenced to a year in jail for theft.
With the return of her husband’s ring, she said, “It was a piece of him that I still had in my hand and it made me feel like I could continue.”
LOS ANGELES CA Aug 9 2010 – A Long Beach police officer who allegedly stole four guns that were to be booked as property was charged today with 13 felony counts.
Damian Ramos, 32, pleaded not guilty this afternoon to four counts each of grand theft of personal property, grand theft firearm and embezzlement by a police officer, along with one count of possession of an assault weapon.
The charges involve four firearms that were not booked into evidence after a call to a scrap yard to pick up 11 firearms, Deputy District Attorney Alfred Coletta told Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Hilleri G. Merritt.
One of the four firearms was recovered, but the other three have not been found, according to the prosecutor.
Defense attorney Darold M. Shirwo told the judge that the officer is “innocent until proven guilty.”
“This is a man that has been entrusted to protect society and he has,” Shirwo said.
Of the alleged theft, he said, “I don’t think it can be tied directly to him.”
The judge ordered Ramos to remain jailed on $100,000 bail, despite the defense’s request that he be released on his own recognizance.
He is due back at the downtown Los Angeles courthouse on Aug. 23 for a hearing to determine if there is enough evidence to require him to stand trial.
Ramos was taken into custody Thursday morning after a search turned up evidence connecting him to missing weapons that had been turned over to police, said Long Beach Police Department spokeswoman Nancy Pratt.
“Ramos, a five-year employee with the department, handled a found property call at a Long Beach business,” Pratt said. “The business turned over numerous weapons to Ramos. However, the department discovered that not all of the weapons had been placed into evidence.”
The number of weapons turned over by the business did not match up with the number of items Ramos turned in and an investigation was immediately launched, Pratt said.
“Upon learning of the potential misconduct by one of our own, we took swift action to ensure that the investigation was handled thoroughly, and I am confident that these were the actions of a single officer,” Chief Jim McDonnell said in a statement. “It is our responsibility to ensure the public’s trust within our police department, and anyone who compromises the integrity of this organization will be dealt with immediately.”
Ramos has been suspended without pay pending the outcome of the criminal investigation, authorities said.
The Belleville-News Democrat’s review of East St. Louis School District 189′s crime reports found that the thefts starting July 2009 took place even while the schools had access to state-of-the-art surveillance and alarm systems.
The newspaper said the losses arose from the theft of computers and other electronic equipment as well as damage caused during the break-ins.
In some cases, the newspaper reported, the thieves had an easy time because doors had been left unlocked at night and the burglar alarms weren’t properly set. Other times, they used rocks and boards to break in through windows.
Carl Officer, a former East St. Louis mayor who is now on the school board, said the thefts and repair bills caused by burglars have cost more than $1 million since July last year. A board colleague, Kinnis Williams, said he plans to call on district administrators to detail what was stolen.
All the while, St. Clair County State’s Attorney Robert Haida says he has not been asked to file charges in any of the thefts, including the pillaging of 52 laptop computers from East St. Louis Senior High School last December.
“We have had no communication at all with the district regarding that case,” Haida said.
The number of stolen laptops may be twice that, the newspaper reported, noting that crime reports by the district’s security chief — Marion Hubbard, a former police chief — list 110 missing computers bought in April 2009 for $142,642.
Officer said that despite board policy discouraging board members from making personal trips to schools, he has scheduled security and safety inspections and will hold meetings with parents and teachers at the district’s 22 schools.
“I was told that’s not really a board member’s place. To hell with that,” Officer said, wondering aloud if some of the thefts were carried out by some district employees.
Kim McAfee, a Washington Park police investigator who heads KLM Security, holder of the $1.2 million security contract with the district, said the report of $1 million in losses “doesn’t surprise me.” He referred additional comment to Hubbard, who directed the newspaper to Superintendent Theresa Saunders.
Saunders did not immediately return messages left Monday by The Associated Press.
The newspaper said reports by East St. Louis police officer Ronald Ike Sr. showed that school workers repeatedly failed to set burglar alarms, sometimes because they did not know how. In one case, the newspaper reported, a Miles Davis Elementary School custodian failed to lock the library’s door — the janitor said he didn’t know how to use a key — and burglars made off with three computers and a printer.
In other break-ins, motion sensors did not work because their batteries were dead. McAfee once found that the motion detectors were turned in the wrong direction, away from windows — perhaps explaining why burglars of a middle school in March managed to abscond with a digital projector valued at about $1,200.
Fontana CA Aug 10 2010 Two men in ski masks attempted to rob a armored-car guard in Fontana, but were scared off when the guard drew his pistol as the would-be robbers approached him.
The incident took place at about 9:15 this morning in the parking lot of the Bank of America in the 11100 block of Sierra Avenue, Fontana police said in a news release.
The two suspects were driving toward the guard when he drew his gun, police said. The suspects fled in a blue Chevrolet pickup, which was found a few blocks away. It had been reported stolen in Ontario.
The driver of the pickup is described as in his late teens to mid-20s, heavy set, with short brown hair and a thin mustache. He was wearing dark clothing and a black ski mask, and may have been armed with a silver handgun.
His passenger was described as being in his late teens or early 20s, with short brown hair. He, too, was wearing dark clothes and a black ski mask.
Anyone with information, is asked to call Fontana police at 909-350-7700