Germantown TN May 21 2011 An off-duty Germantown police officer riding a motorcycle was killed in a two-vehicle crash at Germantown Parkway and Woodchase Drive.
Memphis police officers responded to the crash at about 9:50 p.m. Wednesday involving a motorcycle, driven by officer Dustin Lee Martin, and a Honda Accord. Martin, 43, of Bartlett, died on the scene.
MPD investigators said the car was being driven north on Germantown, attempting to turn left on Woodchase, when it was struck by Martin’s motorcycle. He was driving a Harley Davidson and traveling south on Germantown Parkway.
The 26-year-old Horn Lake man driving the car was transported to the Regional Medical Center at Memphis in non-critical condition.
The investigation was continuing Thursday.
Martin had been with the Germantown Police Department since February 2006, according to a release from the department.
He was a member of the Germantown SWAT team and just this week served on President Barack Obama’s security detail when the president spoke to the 2011 graduating class of Booker T. Washington High School.
Before becoming a policeman, Martin served in the U.S. Marine Corps for more than 20 years. He was a decorated veteran and received the Meritorious Service Medal, among other awards.
He is survived by his wife and daughter.
Police are hoping surveillance video and pictures may help catch the man who’s pulling his gun on unsuspecting clerks, DeKalb detectives said.
“In one of the robberies, he racked a round, cocked his gun to show the cashier he was serious and wanted the money,” Sgt. Nicole Rutland with DeKalb County police said.
Rutland said in each case the robber walks in a drugstore and tries to pull his shirt near his face because he knows he has been spotted on the surveillance camera.
The man the attempts to buy something and then pulls a gun on the store clerk and grabs the money from the cash register.
Rutland believes surveillance video could really help someone in locating the robber.
“His hair is the most distinctive thing about him. He wears dreads, medium to short length, and is from 5’8 to 5’10 in height. He favors that sweatshirt type of clothing,” Rutland said.
The armed robber has hit drugstores on North Druid Hills Road, North Decatur Road, Lawrenceville Highway and two locations in Gwinnett County.
Police are asking anyone with information on the robberies to please call Crime Stoppers at 404-577-TIPS (8477).
Reno NV May 21 2011 Police say a man is charged with involuntary manslaughter, after a security guard died Wednesday, following a fight.
It happened around 4:30 p.m. near Echo Avenue and Mount Babcock Street.
Police say a man there was drunk, and yelling at people passing by.
A fight broke out between that man, 20-year-old Andrew Weist, and Sierra Nevada Job Corps Security Guards.
One guard collapsed and later died.
Police arrested Weist in the man’s death. In addition to involuntary manslaughter, he’s charged with two counts of battery and one count of minor in consumption.
If you know anything about this case that can help police, please call Secret Witness at 322-4900.
At about 9:30am, police say a Brinks armored car was robbed at First Community Credit Union in the 9100 block of Westview at Campbell. The 911 caller said they thought they heard gunshots, but that has not been confirmed.
The armed suspects fled in a green dually pickup truck. There’s no word on how much money may have been taken, or if anyone was hurt.
The credit union remains open for business. The FBI is investigating.
GLADEWATER TX May 21 2011 — A Union Grove High School teacher resigned Thursday and is in the Gregg County Jail, charged with improper relationship between an educator and a student.
White Oak Police arrested Angela Sue New, 38, Thursday morning. New, a high school English teacher, is being held on $20,000 bond.
Union Grove Superintendent Brian Gray said New was immediately placed on administrative leave in April when the allegations came to light.
“The safety and well-being of our students is our top priority,” Gray said.
The student involved was an 18-year-old Union Grove High School student. According to New’s jail record, the offense happened April 22 — less than two months before Union Grove’s June 3 graduation.
Union Grove ISD started the investigation after allegations were made, Gray said. The investigation was turned over to Gladewater police who issued a warrant for her arrest. She was arrested by police from White Oak, where she lives.
New resigned following her arrest, Gray said.
GAINESVILLE, Ga May 21 2011– Have you ever had your cell phone dial someone by accident? Have you ever heard of anyone getting arrested for it? A Hall County teenager is in jail after his phone pocket-dialed 911 during a drug transaction.
A cell phone call came into Hall County 911 at about 1:30 AM Tuesday but there was no one on the line talking directly to the dispatcher who answered the call. “So the dispatcher began listening to the conversation that was going on in the background and by listening to that they realized that this was a drug deal going on,” said Col. Jeff Strickland of the Hall County Sheriff office.
During the call the dispatcher heard two individuals talking and they mentioned a location where they were, according to Col. Strickland. 911 immediately dispatched a sheriff deputy to a Waffle House on Lanier Island Parkway in south Hall County.
When the deputy arrived at the Waffle House there was still a connection between the cell phone and the dispatcher. The deputy went inside and started asking some questions. “He began to talk to the cook and then dispatch radioed that they could hear him very clearly,” Strickland said. When the deputy asked the cook about his cell phone it was in his pocket.
Sure enough, the dispatcher was still on the other end. Daniel Moore, 18, of Sugar Hill was charged with possession of Hydrocodone and possession of Alprazolam (Xanax).
“Once he realized the entire conversation was recorded he cooperated with the officer and turned over the drugs,” Strickland said. The drug deal took place before the deputy arrived and the seller wasn’t caught, according to Strickland.
Strickland said it’s the first time he’s ever heard of a drug transaction being recorded as it transpired. A dumb-luck arrest was made by a smart phone.
Lake Charles LA May 21 2011 Two people have been arrested by investigators with Louisiana State Police’s Gaming Enforcement Section for allegedly stealing more than $400,000 from L’Auberge du Lac Casino Resort.
Derrick Weldon, 42, of Lake Charles, was booked into the Calcasieu Correctional Center on the charges of cheating and swindling over $1,500 and conspiracy to commit cheating and swindling. Weldon, a roulette dealer, allegedly stole $257,200.
His accomplice, 33-year-old Charbel Tannous of Houston, faces the same charges and allegedly stole $143,800.
State Police Sgt. James Anderson said the suspects were observed by L’Auberge security agents participating in a scheme referred in the gaming industry as “past posting”.
The state investigation started on May 12.
“The patron would place a bet after it was no longer allowed. The dealer let this happen on multiple instances when the roulette ball fell on a position on the wheel,” he said.
Anderson said Tannous left the casino before being arrested.
“On May 17, Tannous was pulled from an outgoing international flight in Houston just prior to take off,” investigators said in a news release.
Tannous is supposed to be extradited back to Louisiana. His bond was set at $1 million by Judge Mike Canaday.
Judge Wilfred Carter set Weldon’s bond at $25,000.
Anderson credited the casino’s security team’s use of high-tech surveillance equipment in exposing the crime.
“They are very proactive,” he said.
L’Auberge spokeswoman Kerry Andersen said the casino will “prosecute to the fullest extent anyone who steals, cheats or swindles from the L’Auberge.”
Anderson said the suspects face up to 15 years in prison and a potential $4,500 fine.
The investigation is continuing.
IRVING, Texas May 21 2011 – A former Irving high school teacher was arrested Wednesday night for a sexual relationship she had with one of her students two years ago, according to a published report.
According to police, 26-year-old April St. John Alexander, who taught biology at MacArthur High School, is accused of having sex with a boy who was then 16 years old.
The teenager told police he had sex approximately two dozen times or more with Alexander in the fall of 2009.
Some of the incidents reportedly occurred at the school, and some happened in her car.
An Irving ISD spokesman said that Alexander started working with the district in October 2008, and resigned in November 2010. She gave no reason for her resignation.
Alexander is the third teacher in North Texas to be accused of an improper relationship with a student this week.
Christian Michael Flores of Garland is facing two charges, and Brittni Kolleps of Arlington is facing at least five charges
West Virginia State Police arrested Keith Phipps and Jack Turley about 10 a.m. Friday.
Phipps was the principal at Boone County Career and Technical Center, Turley was a teacher.
Troopers say the men bought meth and then smoked it in Phipps’ office.
Phipps and Turley have been charged with the illegal purchase of pseudoephedrine.
RIVERDALE, GA May 21 2011 – Police arrested a substitute teacher after students said he urinated in a trash can during class.
“I want the guy to never teach or be around kids again,” said parent Tika Carter.
According to police, Coleman Eaton Jr., 60, urinated in front of about 30 fourth-graders, including Carter’s daughter, at Riverdale Elementary in Riverdale, GA.
“She said the guy unzipped his pants, she did see that,” Carter said.
Police say Eaton told the students to face the front of the class, went to the back, and urinated in a trash can. He told students he was pouring apple juice in the trash can.
Eaton was arrested, and now faces two counts of aggravated child molestation.
“I’m shocked, very shocked,” said Eaton’s neighbor, Marty Holder.
Holder says he is a quiet guy, who causes no problems. Parents wonder what was going through his mind.
“He couldn’t go to the bathroom and excuse himself,” said Barbieretta Christian. “That’s crazy.”
Carter says her daughter has not been the same since the incident.
“Yes, she’s very troubled by it,” Carter said. “She’s troubled by it, I am, too. I was very upset about it.”
Police say they have evidence to prove it was not apple juice the teacher put in the trash can.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn.May 21 2011 — Public safety officials hope a meeting in the near future will help avoid a recurrence of an incident Thursday at the Knoxville Zoo, when emergency personnel were denied access to treat a 5-year-old boy reported to have been injured by a camel.
A visibly upset group of Knoxville Fire Department first responders and paramedics with the Rural/Metro Ambulance Service were forced to wait outside the entrance of the zoo by a zoo security officer. The emergency personnel treated the child after his mother brought him — alert, conscious and crying — to the zoo entrance.
The boy was transported by ambulance to the University of Tennessee Medical Center. His condition and name were not available. “We will be having meetings with zoo officials so something like this doesn’t happen again,” said KFD spokesman Capt. D.J. Corcoran.
Kim Sepesi, public information officer with Rural/Metro, declined to discuss the incident Thursday. She referred questions to the Knoxville Zoo.
Sepesi, however, said Rural/Metro officials would like to participate in any meetings to enhance understanding of the needs of emergency providers and the zoo.
“The ultimate goal is to take care of the patient,” she said.
Corcoran said the Knox County E-911 Center got a cellphone call from inside the zoo at 11:58 a.m. saying “a child had been trampled by a camel.” Rural/Metro didn’t transport the child until 12:23 p.m., Sepesi said.
Knoxville Zoo Executive Director Jim Vlna said the call was made by a female physician in the zoo.
“We had no idea what was happening,” Vlna said of the injured boy. “We found out basically when the Fire Department arrived.”
Vlna said the zoo ranger stopped first responders at the gate because of a report of an animal on the loose. By the time zoo officials determined the animal was a camel, the mother of the injured boy had refused medical treatment, Vlna said.
“Under normal circumstances, they (first responders) would be escorted in, but we had a report of an animal on the loose,” Vlna said.
Vlna, however, was unable to explain why the mother changed her mind and had the boy rushed to a hospital once outside the entrance.
Vlna also had no explanation for why his employees would know about a camel possibly loose but not know the same camel had injured the boy.
“These are just bits and pieces we’re trying to put together right now,” Vlna said. “Right now, I don’t know.”
Vlna said the incident occurred at the camel rides. A 400-pound baby camel in the enclosure separated by a 3-foot-high wooden fence apparently was startled by an employee spraying fly repellent in the area, he said.
The camel partially jumped the fence, trapping the boy between the fence and the camel’s leg, Vlna said. He said the boy had no visible injuries.
“EMS (emergency medical services) would have been let in if the child had serious injuries,” Vlna said.
Vlna said that in the end, the situation boiled down to “a communications issue.”
“We’ve already talked about it,” he said. “If they get a call to the zoo, for them to call us and let us know,” he said.
But Vlna said he was willing to discuss the issue further with emergency responders to develop a protocol for future incidents.
Vlna said zoo officials do meet with the Knoxville Police Department to develop policies on how to deal with a dangerous animal on the loose and the use of firearms. But they have not met in the past with the Fire Department so that first responders would be familiar with the 54-acre zoo.
He’s accused of pulling over Hispanic males on traffic stops, searching them and stealing money from them.
According to court documents, the FBI was made aware of the theft allegations in March.
The State Attorney’s office assigned its Public Integrity Unit Task Force to the case.
Investigators interviewed 4 men who said Ott stole from them. According to an arrest report the officer would pull the Hispanic men over, search them, and in almost every case take their wallet and tell them to stay in his police cruiser.
The report says when Ott brought the men’s wallets back, money would be missing. Investigators say up to 530 dollars was taken during at least four vehicle stops.
Some of the men who were pulled over spoke little English. In some cases they didn’t have a driver’s license, but were never ticketed.
Honduran Organization of Palm Beach president Jose Cerrato reacted to the arrest saying, “Everybody is human, but he’s an animal because the community, the Hispanic community is working hard.”
Investigators arrested Ott Wednesday after setting up a sting.
Ott’s first court appearance was Thursday morning.
His bond was set at $25,000.
The Westchester district attorney said Friday that 51-year-old Lawrence Bottone of Stamford was indicted on 29 charges, including assault and criminal impersonation.
The district attorney said Bottone found recruits in public places. According to the indictment, he would then take them to what he called training sessions, where they would be stripped, blindfolded, whipped and have needles placed under their fingernails to prepare them for torture.
Prosecutors say they have found four victims.
The office of Bottone’s lawyer, Kenneth Bunting, said he is not commenting.
If convicted of first-degree assault, Bottone could face up to 25 years in prison.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.May 21 2011 — A former Wasson High School student was arrested on campus grounds Thursday at gunpoint, according to police.
Security personnel from the school remembered the man and checked him for warrants and found he was wanted for failure to appear for suspicion of weapons on school grounds.
When the school resource officer and security approached him, they found he was concealing a sawed off shotgun in his pant leg, a police report said.
Officers arrested him at gunpoint and the gun was taken from him, police said.
The man, who’s name has not been released, has been arrested on suspicion of possession of weapons by previous offenders, unlawfully carrying a concealed weapon and a warrant probation for violation to appear on a charge of weapons on school grounds.
No other information was immediately made available by police.
Wasson High School is located at 2115 Afton Way in Colorado
ST Louis MO May 21 2011 An insurance company employee who was accidentally shot in the leg when a security guard dropped a gun inside a Chesterfield office building in February has filed a lawsuit against the guard and the maker of the gun.
The insurance worker, Ian Cornett, filed the suit in St. Louis County Circuit Court against security guard Jack Kellogg and gun maker Sig Sauer Inc. The suit was filed April 27.
It says Cornett was shot in the left thigh and that his ability to work and move has been “greatley impaired and diminished.” The suit says he had about $10,000 in medical expenses and $3,000 in lost wages, and seeks at least $25,000 from each defendant.
The shooting happened at about 9:30 a.m. on Feb. 3 in a hallway inside an office building at 390 South Woods Mill Road. The victim was 34 and the guard was 64 at the time.
The suit says Kellogg failed to secure the loaded 9 mm handgun, and didn’t have the safety feature engaged. The suit also claims the gun was defective in that it was able to discharge without anyone pulling the trigger.
GUELPH Canada May 21 2011 — Some astute work by security staff at a local store led to a huge bust by Guelph Police this week.
Almost $2 million in marijuana, hundreds of counterfeit gift cards, $35,000 in alleged stolen property and a shotgun were all seized by Guelph Police in a series of events that started with a suspicious store security guard acting on his or her concerns.
“The loss prevention officers at the store that did the investigation did a fantastic job and they should be commended,” Staff Sgt. Doug Pflug said Friday, as police rolled out the seized goods. “It was their initial investigation that led to these arrests.”
Police would not, however, identify the store connected to the break in the case.
Three people – two British Columbia women, aged 37 and 29 and a 45-year-old Guelph man – were arrested and remain in police custody.
Staff Sgt. Patrick Milligan said the probe started after a security clerk at a store on Stone Road observed a suspicious transaction in progress that saw a customer using a gift card.
The shoppers were confronted about the card’s authenticity and fled the store. They were followed by staff who called police. Police stopped the shoppers’ car and three people were arrested without incident.
A subsequent police search at a Puslinch residence led to the discovery of 194 mature marijuana plants with an estimated street value of $194,000, roughly 1,600 starter marijuana plants with a mature value of $1.6 million and various marijuana grow-op equipment items. An unregistered shotgun and ammunition was also seized.
The Puslinch house is also where police found most of the alleged stolen property as well as materials used for making fake gift cards. That property ranged from children’s toys to a snowblower. The gift cards were from numerous well-known department stores from various provinces.
Milligan believes the Guelph bust might be the tip of the iceberg, given the broad range of fake gift cards and the various provinces they would be used in as some of the gift cards were for stores not in Ontario.
“We’re conducting a further investigation and getting in touch with the retailers that might be involved as well,” Milligan said. “This has the potential to be much bigger.”
Jennifer Nowag, 37, and Cinthia Fraser, 29, of Kelowna, B.C., along with Mario Bakopoulos, 45, of Guelph, are charged with 15 counts of use of fraudulent credit card data, possession of stolen property obtained by crime and various other fraud-related charges.
An investigation into the seized marijuana is ongoing, police said.
Wilson, N.C.May 21 2011 — Rochelle Pender’s family and co-workers were stunned Friday to learn that the smiling Walmart greeter was dead. Police said employees at the 2500 Forest Hills Road store were chasing a suspected shoplifter Wednesday when someone ran into Pender. She fell and hit her head and died two days later.
“She’s just doing her job and was in the wrong place,” said Sgt. John Slaughter of the Wilson Police Department.
Store security caught up to Joshua Max Lambert, 23, of 3108 Walnut Creek Drive, Apt. A, and held him until police arrived. Police charged Lambert with two counts of simple assault. He was being held in the Wilson County jail Friday under a $5,000 secured bond.
“She did not deserve to die this kind of death,” said Pender’s daughter, Teresa Langley.
Langley said she had begged her mother to stop working, but she gave up when she realized how important the role was to Pender.
“A lot of people her age are not even working. She hung onto her job after we lost our dad because that gave her life,” Langley said.
Pender’s grandson, Tyler Hayes, said he would remember her quick wit and sense of humor. “She was a character,” he said. “She was a trip to be around.”
A Walmart spokesman said Pender, 71, had been with the company for 15 years and was a beloved member of the team at the Wilson store.
“She’s going to be greeting people in heaven now,” Langley said.
CHARLOTTE, N.C.May 21 2011 — A robber held up an armored car in Charlotte on Thursday morning.
Two Loomis Fargo employees were held at gunpoint as they tried to reload an ATM on Overland Park Lane in the University City area.
Police said just before 9 a.m., the gunman approached the vehicle as an employee was getting money from it and demanded the cash.
The robber fled on foot, police said.
Police searched the area using a helicopter and their K-9 unit but did not find the thief.
Investigators released only a vague description, saying they’re looking for a black man who was wearing a ski mask and black clothing. While he took off on foot, it’s likely he had a getaway car waiting somewhere nearby, police said.