Norfolk VA Oct 29 2010 Norfolk police are now assisting Virginia Beach detectives investigating the shooting death of off-duty Norfolk Officer Victor Decker, whose body was found Tuesday morning off Oceana Boulevard.
Norfolk is providing assistance and investigating specific questions at the request of Virginia Beach, Norfolk police Lt. Joseph Baron said at a news conference Thursday with Chief Bruce P. Marquis.
Marquis said Beach detectives have recovered a piece of evidence, and it may be Decker’s wallet. The chief said his understanding is that Decker’s service pistol was in his home when he was killed. Marquis had said Wednesday that personal items were taken from Decker.
A motorist found Decker about 7:15 a.m. Tuesday when he stopped to check a pickup in the 400 block of Oceana Blvd., near a go-go club called Atlantis. Two people who were at Atlantis on Monday night said they saw Decker there, but that nothing seemed amiss. The motorist found Decker lying on the side of the road near the truck.
Baron, who is supervising Norfolk’s end of the investigation, said no other Norfolk police officers were there with Decker.
Beach police are leaving no stone unturned, Marquis and Baron said.
“They’re receiving a lot of phone calls with information,” Marquis said.
“They are hot and heavy on this investigation and their investigators are working diligently to track down every single lead,” Baron said. “We are currently helping them in reference to specific information that they would like us to research our database, to see if we can come up with anything.”
One aspect of the investigation involves a March 2009 shooting in downtown Norfolk that Decker was involved in. When he heard gunfire while patrolling on his bicycle, he responded and came upon a robbery and shooting that had just happened. Decker shot and killed one suspect, Marlon D. Sanders, 19, after Sanders fired his gun at Decker. The second suspect, Brighton Evlon Alderman, 18, surrendered to Decker.
Alderman is scheduled to go on trial Dec. 13 on a charge of first-degree murder and attempted robbery in the death of the victim, Brian Carter, 24, of Suffolk.
Decker, a beloved officer known for developing friendships with business owners and downtown workers, was given commendations for his response.
Virginia Beach detectives asked Norfolk for their file on the robbery and shooting. Norfolk police, however, said it is one of many aspects being investigated as police “leave no stone unturned.” Beach police said Thursday that they had no new information to report to the public.
Also Thursday, Decker’s widow, Dawn Decker, met with reporters, saying she wanted to ask that anyone with information report it to authorities. She was in Georgia visiting family when her husband was killed.
She said she and her husband went to middle school and high school together, when they were friends, and had been married for about a year and a half.
“If Victor saw somebody that he thought needed to handle, he would have stepped in,” she said. “He was the type of person that if someone had a flat tire, he would pull over and help them. … All he did was try to help as much as he could.”
She said Decker planned to work for Norfolk police “as long as he possibly could.”
They have an 8-month-old baby girl named Charlotte. Their daughter’s birth, she said, was “a very precious experience. One we hoped to repeat.”
Decker’s funeral will be at 2 p.m. Saturday at The Rock Church on Kempsville Road in Virginia Beach.
Police ask that anyone with information on the shooting call Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP
Fresno CA Oct 29 2010 AP A saleswoman from California who won a substantial settlement for enduring being spanked during a company team-building exercise, finally has the right to collect her money.
Janet Orlando, 57, was a saleswoman for an Anaheim-based security company when she claims she was sexually harassed four years ago.
She sued and a jury awarded her $1.7 million against Alarm One Inc., in April 2006, but she has yet to see a penny.
Healing the pain: Janet Orlando, 57, from Fresno, California has been awarded $1.4million after she sued for sexual harassment for being spanked in the work place
A Fresno County Superior Court jury ruled on Tuesday that the million settlement stands and she is entitled to receive the payout.
Jurors had awarded Orlando $10,000 for economic loss, $40,000 for future medical costs, $450,000 for emotional distress, pain and suffering, and $1.2million in punitive damages.
The company and its insurance carries agreed to a settlement figure of $1.4million but later declined to pay saying the deal with dependent on finding a bank willing to finance it.
They said they didn’t find a bank to fund the payout.
Alarm One Inc., appealed but jurors hearing the retrial deliberated for less than an hour and found Alarm One, Carolina Casualty Insurance and Monitor Liability Managers Inc. in breach of their contract with Orlando and have ordered them to pay her the million dollar sum.
‘They made a middle-aged woman go in front of mostly male co-workers between the ages of 18 and 24, bend over, put her hands on the wall and spanked her with a metal sign’ The unpaid fund has already drawn $600,000 in interest and if the case is prolonged further the damages will grow at least $200,000 each year.
Orlando cried as the verdict was announced in Judge Donald Black’s courtroom in Fresno, California. Outside court she described the case as being like a sexual assault.
‘You feel like they just keep raping you and raping you,’ she said. ‘It’s almost like they are doing it on purpose.’
Orlando’s lawyer Nicholas Wagner said that because Alarm One has now gone bankrupt, Carolina Casualty might be left paying most of the bill.
The Fresno County resident had only worked at the home security company for five months between late 2002 and early 2003.
She quit her job claiming to have been humiliated by being spanked in front of her co-workers with a competitor’s yard sign.
Her employer claimed it was just a camaraderie-building exercise.
Orlando said she was embarrassed, permanently scarred and mentally anguished by the fraternity-like atmosphere and sales-building exercises at Alarm One Inc.
Employees were also paddled if they were late for a sales meeting.
Mr Wagner said at the first trial: ‘The most compelling evidence is that they made a middle-aged woman go in front of mostly male co-workers between the ages of 18 and 24, bend over, put her hands on the wall and spanked her with a metal sign’.
‘I have the best attorneys in town. We’re never going to give up’, Orlando said.
Raleigh NC Oct 29 2010 Fred Moore is a popular man on the UNC campus, but few know his last name.
“They don’t call me Mr. Moore or Fred,” he said. “They call me Mr. Fred.”
Moore has been a security guard for many of the University’s athletic facilities, but has gained a reputation as an amateur cartoonist.
“He has been around since I was an undergraduate,” said 2007 UNC graduate and Campus Recreation employee Tori Hooker. “He has always taken care of people around here.”
Moore’s cartoons often center on iconic UNC scenery, such as the Bell Tower or the Old Well.
His specialty, however, is ACC mascots partaking in comical and, usually, basketball-oriented action.
“My personal favorite is the yellow jacket stinging the Blue Devil in the butt,” Moore said.
The large-framed and big-smiling 62 year old said he has been drawing since grade school.
“I used to get in trouble for scribbling in school,” Moore said.
While in the Air Force, Moore’s matured artistic talents were discovered by a senior officer. He was then frequently asked to create to-scale battle sketches.
Since his incorporation into UNC’s security force in 1991, word of his gift has circulated campus.
“People started asking, ‘Can you draw? Can you draw? Can you draw?’” Moore said.
Patrolling between Fetzer Field, the Student Recreation Center and both Fetzer and Woollen gyms, he is constantly greeted by friendly hollers and requests for a drawing.
“He makes a point to meet everyone — all the student employees that work for Campus Rec and a lot of the students involved with Campus Rec,” said intramural sports director Justin Ford.
An ever-growing waiting list currently has fifteen people anticipating a personalized “Mr. Fred” work.
He works from his house, averaging three or four drawings a week. His process of creation is simple and effective. Starting with thin graphite wisps, he transfers his imagined image to the page with a number two pencil, darkens his lines with Sharpie, and brightens the finished product with colored pencils.
“We choose what we want and he usually adds a little something of his own,” senior Natalie Malikyan said. “Usually a Blue Devil is being crushed somewhere.”
Certain motifs such as baby rams, a basketball-playing Rameses and giggling squirrels in Polk Place are prevalent throughout his works, and Moore’s content often crosses into the fantastical.
“People ask for all kinds of things,” he said.
Sophomore Kiva Moore said she is on the waiting list, hoping to receive a representation of “Princess Jasmine dunking on Rameses.”
There are few requests Moore will deny.
But when a UNC swimmer asked for Rameses to be portrayed drowning the Blue Devil, Moore had to say no.
“She was such a sweet girl, you wouldn’t have thought she’d ask for that,” Moore said. “I drew her something else.”
Moore has accumulated more than just a fan base at UNC — he has built friendships.
On his breaks, Moore is often spotted with students enjoying a shared crossword puzzle — another widely known skill of his, Ford said.
“Mr. Fred is one of the nicest people I know and is very loyal,” he said.
“If a student asks him to come to a game, he will make the effort to be there.”
DEARBORN COUNTY, Ind.Oct 29 2010 – A choir teacher at a southeast Indiana school has been arrested and charged with four counts of child seduction.
The prosecutor for Dearborn County confirmed to WLWT that Stacey Lee Johnson was arrested on felony charges. He was being held at the Dearborn County Jail.
According to the indictment, Johnson had sexual intercourse with a 16-year-old student. The student told investigators that the pair had sex between 10 and 15 times beginning in July.
The juvenile told investigators that the encounters happened at Lawrenceburg High School and Greendale Middle School.
Johnson was a choir teacher at Greendale Middle School, said Prosecutor Aaron Negangard.
Police in Lake Havasu City took Darrell Rupple, 65, into custody on Oct. 21 on a $1.25 million warrant issued by the San Bernardino County Superior Court, according to a sheriff’s press release.
Sgt. Roberto Lomeli of the sheriff’s department’s Crimes Against Children Detail said Monday his department received a report on Aug. 25 from a law-enforcement agency in Orange County.
That agency, he said, had been contacted by one of the alleged victims, identified only as a 35-year-old man, who told officers Rupple had molested him on an unspecified number of occasions during the 1987-88 school year.
Lomeli said the alleged victim provided the name of another student Rupple allegedly molested during the 1990-91 school year. Sheriff’s deputies contacted the victims and developed information leading to the warrant.
Sheriff’s Detective Rodney Gardner said Wednesday those reports have led to a broadening of the investigation. Gardner said he searched through sheriff’s department reports and, with a search warrant, obtained Rupple’s personnel file from the school district.
“That opened the door,” he said. Rupple, who taught sixth and seventh grades at Mary Putnam Henck Intermediate School from 1982 through 1998, also taught language-arts at Mountain High, a district spokesperson said.
Gardner said Rupple and the school district “worked out an early retirement” for the teacher. He said a joint investigation of Rupple was done by the school district and sheriff’s deputies in 1996, but would not comment on what triggered it or what it concluded.
Asked how many students Rupple may have victimized, Gardner said he thinks there were at least five boys and one girl. But since his department issued its press release on Oct. 21, he said, another possible case has arisen.
In it, he said, a woman contacted him to say she had witnessed an incident of “inappropriate touching” between Rupple and a male student in a classroom.
Gardner said his investigation so far indicates there were instances of sexual contact between Rupple and students both inside the classroom and at a carpet-cleaning business he ran on the side.
“The classroom stuff seems to be touchy, feely, grabby, with some penis exposure,” Gardner said. But Rupple’s alleged activities off campus were allegedly more daring.
Rupple reportedly offered students who needed money a chance to work for him. “During those events there was substantial sexual contact,” Gardner said, including “oral copulation, masturbation and at least one case of sodomy.
“I clearly see a pattern here,” Gardner said. Asked whether he believes the allegations against Rupple have substance, he replied, “I would never have taken this to the district attorney if I weren’t sure there was substance.”
Gardner said that, because of statute-of-limitations issues, Rupple can only be prosecuted for offenses occurring between 1988 and 1991. But he is searching for victims from other years, he said, for corroboration, to help prosecutors build a stronger case.
He added that, after a check with police in Lake Havasu City, Rupple’s home town, he sees no indications of similar violations attributable to Rupple in Arizona.
Sgt. Lomeli, who supervises the unit in which Gardner works, said he believes the department’s press release “might cause other victims to come forward.” The release says deputies are following up “on information regarding allegations of the molestation of other students spanning from the 1983-84 school year to the 1995-96 school year.”
According to Rim district records, Rupple was hired on July 13, 1976, as a substitute teacher and substituted until being hired as a contract teacher on Sept. 22, 1982. He retired on June 30, 1998.
Lomeli said the sheriff’s department will seek to extradite Rupple to stand trial. If Rupple requests a hearing on the extradition effort, he said, it could take a month to bring him back to San Bernardino County. If he doesn’t, Lomeli said, “it would just be a few days.”
Gardner said he believes Rupple will not fight extradition, because it would be costly and could deny him funds he would need later for his legal defense.
Darrell Parks, who taught math at MPH before his retirement in 1999, shared with this newspaper his recollections of Rupple.
“He was a tall man, about 6-4,” said Parks, who taught in the Rim district for 41 years. “He was an old hippie. He was a fascinating individual. You can see how kids would be drawn to him. Some guys are just cool.” Parks described Rupple as having an outgoing personality and someone who “seemed to have an interest in people.”
Parks recalled that Rupple “was active in teacher politics. We’ve only had one strike in the school district. It was over the capping of medical benefits. We were both on the negotiating committee that called the strike. It lasted one day,” he said.
Parks also recalled that Rupple had business interests beyond carpet cleaning during his teaching years. They included operating a Blue Jay restaurant called “Teachers” and the promotion of a low-flow toilet.
Investigators are asking anyone with additional information about the case to contact the Crimes Against Children Detail at (909) 387-3615.
SKYLINE, Calif. Oct 29 2010 — A veteran San Diego police officer who was shot while doing a probation check at a Skyline-area apartment died Thursday, and after a nearly eight-hour standoff, police found the bodies of two other people inside the unit.
The officer was identified as Christopher Wilson. Wilson was a 17-year veteran who was well-known and respected by his peers.
Shortly before 7 a.m., the standoff at the Canyon View Apartments at 479 S. Meadowbrook Drive ended with the discovery of a man and woman dead inside the second-floor unit, according to San Diego police. The pair were found dead in a back bedroom with several guns in the room. It was not immediately clear whether the man and woman died from self-inflicted wounds or gunfire that was exchanged earlier in the standoff.
San Diego police accompanied U.S. Marshals to the address at about 11 p.m. Wednesday to do a probation compliance check on a man who lives there, SDPD Acting Assistant Chief Jim Collins told reporters.
They knocked and someone inside opened the front door, then slammed it shut in the officers’ faces, prompting law enforcement to kick in the door, he said, adding that after kicking in the door, law enforcement was able to take one man into custody.
Gunfire ensued after officers secured the prisoner and then apparently went back to kick-in an interior door in the apartment, leading to someone behind it to fire several rounds. An officer and a police dog named Monty were shot. Later, a man and woman emerged but the standoff continued because authorities believed up to two armed suspects remained inside, Collins said.
A neighbor described seeing the mortally wounded officer being rushed out of the residence, en route to the hospital, following the barrage of shots.
“They carried him down the stairs, and there was just a trail of blood behind him,” Ryan Davis told 10News.
Wilson died at Scripps Mercy Hospital at about 3 a.m., and the German shepherd, Monty, underwent surgery for a wound to his snout and was expected to recover.
During the standoff, authorities used chemical agents and flash bangs in an attempt to clear the apartment. That prompted the man and woman to exit the apartment, Collins said.
One woman is being held as a witness and two men are in custody, one of them is the parolee, authorities told 10News.
More than 50 residents of the apartment complex were evacuated, and the Red Cross was on scene providing assistance. Some of the residents will be allowed to return to their apartments, but the building where the shootings occurred was blocked as police continued their investigation.
Davis said the residents of the apartment did not seem to be troublemakers.
“I don’t really know much of anything about them,” the neighbor said. “I mean, they were just normal people like the rest of us. And this whole thing kind of just happened by, you know, by surprise.”
During a midday briefing at downtown SDPD headquarters, a visibly shaken Mayor Jerry Sanders called the slaying of Wilson “an extraordinary tragedy.”
“This horrible event is a reminder that our police officers put their lives on the line every time they put on their uniform,” the mayor said, his voice choked with emotion.
Police Chief William Lansdowne said Wilson “represents what’s best about the police department.”
“It is Officer Wilson that we dedicate today to,” Lansdowne said. “It is Officer Wilson that we strive to be. It is Officer Wilson that we all look towards and say, ‘He was America’s finest.’”
Wilson is the first law enforcement officer to be killed in the line of duty in San Diego County in nearly four years.
In December 2006, Oceanside police Officer Dan Bessant was killed by a sniper while assisting another officer on a traffic stop.
North County gang member Meki Gaono was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison without parole, plus 61 years, for shooting Bessant. Gaono was just 17 at the time. Another gang member, Penifoti Taeotui, was with Gaono. He was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison, though he did not fire the fatal shot.
A third acquaintance with Gaono and Taeotui that day was also arrested but charges were dismissed for lack of evidence.
Wilson leaves behind two teenage children, a son and daughter, from a previous marriage.
The San Diego Police Officers Association has set up a trust fund to benefit Wilson’s family. Donors are asked to make checks payable to the SDPOA Charity Fund — with Officer Wilson written on the memo line — and send them to the association’s offices at 8388 Vickers St., San Diego, 92111.
The memo said Garza posted nude pictures of himself, including some showing him having intercourse, on numerous adult dating sites. Garza identified himself as a firefighter on at least two, the memo said.
In the memo, Kerr said Garza “took deliberate steps in some of these postings to connect his sexual proclivities with the firefighting profession, which shows a blatant disregard for the ethics of our chosen profession.”
The memo said a man whose wife had an affair with Garza told the department about the photos in July. The department was not able to find any of the photos at the time and notified Garza of the complaint, the document said.
Garza told the department, “That’s old news, and I don’t do that anymore,” the memo said. Garza told the department he last posted photos in 2006 and had taken them down.
But in August, the man who had complained sent an e-mail to the department that included links to websites where the photos could be found, the memo said.
Because of this, the memo said, it was clear Garza had lied to the department when initially asked about the photos.
Fire union President Bob Nicks, who represented Garza in the investigation, said he plans to appeal the decision to fire Garza.
“He didn’t lie in our recollection of the events,” Nicks said. “We will appeal it, and we do plan on getting the firefighter’s job back.”
The memo said Garza violated Fire Department rules by conducting “acts showing a lack of good moral character.”
Nicks said that rule was written a long time ago and is too far-reaching.
“It basically says your conduct off duty can be brought into judgment and punishment,” Nicks said. “It calls into question at what point can the chief impose her morality on a firefighter conducting off-duty activities not associated with the Fire Department.”
Lakewood police Lt. Chris Lawler said employees at a Subway sandwich shop in the 7700 block of Steilacoom Boulevard called 911 to report an armed robbery at about 7:45 p.m. Tuesday.
Before police arrived, the security guard, who was making rounds in the shopping center where the Subway is located, spotted a man with what appeared to be a gun and wearing a bandanna over his face. Lawler said instead of notifying police, the security guard ran after the man and chased him from the shopping center to the nearby Custer Elementary School.
According to Lawler, at some point, the robber turned and appeared to point a weapon at the security guard. The guard then drew his weapon and fired a single shot, Lawler said.
The robber ran away, apparently unhurt. Detectives said they were unable to locate any blood or evidence that the robber was hit.
An investigation into the incident is still under way.
Long Beach Ca. Oct 29 2010 During a press conference Friday, Oct. 22, Police Chief Jim McDonnell said that private security firms and law enforcement agencies haven’t always had the most amicable relationship — but at least in Long Beach, the relationship between the two entities is poised to become more mutually beneficial.
The conference, titled “Public Safety and The Importance of Private Security Sponsorships,” was hosted by the Downtown Long Beach Associates (DLBA) and sponsored by several private security firms. Kraig Kojian, president and CEO of the DLBA, said the goal of the event was to strengthen relationships through education and information sharing among private security companies/personnel, downtown stakeholders, and the Long Beach Police Department (LBPD).
McDonnell’s speech emphasized the need for a major metro city such as Long Beach to have a public/private cooperative featuring cross-training sessions and effeective information sharing among agencies. McDonnell said that the private sector is more advanced than many police departments in terms of specialized technology and how to deal with loss prevention and computer crimes.
“Law enforcement and private security need each other, especially now as we face the (impacts) of the worst economic downturn in recent history,” McDonnell said. “The two fields possess the same strengths, but they have different goals. With the police department, it used to be the mindset that 98% of what we do is confidential, but that’s not so — so much more can be shared. And private security guards give us the ability to have more eyes and ears out there, and that’s an asset… There are about 900 police officers in Long Beach and maybe 5,000 to 10,000 private security employees.”
McDonnell said budget cuts have hindered the city’s need for establishing its own bomb squad and caused a reduction of approximately 40 LBPD officers.
However, McDonnell shared uplifting news with the attendees.
“We’re down 12.5% in murders from last year, and we’re about half of what we were eight years ago in all our (crime statistics),” McDonnell said. “So many of our crimes are crimes of opportunity… If we finish where we are now at the end of the year, (our statistics) will be where we were at in 1972.”
Another of McDonnell’s goals is to have the closed-circuit television cameras that are installed throughout the city wired to “talk” with each other. Business owners are supposed to install cameras at the front and rear of their stores, and McDonnell said more cameras are going to be placed in high crime areas.
“Security personnel know this area like the back of their hand and they haven’t been invited to the table,” McDonnell said. “We’re all going to have to become more responsible as it relates to community policing… I’d like training for each group… We need each other as resources.”
Mary Coburn, DLBA operations manager, said the DLBA has a Downtown Security Alliance that meets at 10 a.m. every third Thursday of the month at the Landmark Square building. The meetings focuses on topics such as workplace violence, financial crimes and phishing scams in Long Beach, local crime statistics and trends, and the regional public private information collaboration system.
As of Oct. 1, the DLBA’s Downtown Guides became part of Service Group Inc. (SGI), instead of Block By Block, the program’s former security firm. Shane Hillard, director of corporate support services for SGI, said the company has employees in 25 business improvement districts across the country. Hillard said SGI employees undergo rigorous training and have an extensive knowledge of their areas.
“We’re looking forward to working with (the LBPD), and we’d love to jump on whatever training is planned in the future,” Hillard said.
Bluffton SC Oct 29 2010 Police arrested a Bluffton Middle School teacher at about 8 a.m. today when school officials noticed she arrived at school smelling of alcohol, according to a police department news release.
School officials removed Marie Urbin, 47, of Hilton Head Island from her classroom immediately and contacted the school resource officer.
She was arrested for public disorderly conduct and disturbing school, according to the release.
Urbin was transported to the Beaufort County Detention Center to await a bond hearing.