Andover MA June 2 2011 An Andover man was taken into custody early Thursday morning after assaulting a Woburn police officer.
Kevin Julian Kobler, 22, of 5 Wagon Wheel Road in Andover, was arrested and charged with assault and battery on a police officer and resisting arrest shortly before 1 a.m. Thursday.
According to police, Woburn Police Officer Jerome Gately was dispatched to the Marshalls warehouse on Commerce Way in Woburn after security guards reported seeing a “suspicious” man on the property.
Officer Gately said the guards told him the man was “acting very strange and appeared to be confused.”
“They said the man was dancing on guard rails and told them that they were not better than him,” reported Officer Gately.
When the patrolman approached Kobler in his cruiser, the 22-year-old Andover man “immediately stood up and started to walk toward me at a fast pace with his fists clenched,” said Officer Gately.
According to police, Kobler “started throwing punches at [Officer Gately] before [he] could say anything to him.”
Police subdued Kobler with force, and managed to cuff the man as he continued to struggle.
According to police, Officer Gately’s use of force was “necessary to effect arrest, necessary to defend self and necessary to restrain for suspect’s own safety.”
After Kobler was taken into custody, Officer Gately asked Kobler “what was the matter with him.” The man reportedly replied, “I’m [expletive] crazy.”
Police believe that due to Kobler’s “combative behavior” and “very confused” nature, he may have been “under influence of some type of narcotic.”
Atlanta GA June 2 2011 Law enforcement officials in Georgia are preparing for a new immigration law that is to take effect on July 1.
The new law authorizes law enforcement to check the immigration status of a suspect who cannot provide an acceptable form of identification. But many officers lack the capability to check immigration status while out in the field.
Police departments and sheriff’s offices around the state are drafting guidelines spelling out what their officers can and can’t do under the new law, said Dale Mann, director of the Georgia Public Safety Training Center.
The law is among the strictest on immigration at the state level in the nation. On Thursday, a coalition of civil rights groups, including the American Civil Liberties Union, filed a lawsuit asking a federal judge to block the law from going into effect on July 1.
The coalition says that immigration is a federal matter, and that it will lead to profiling by law enforcement officials.
Mann led a training session Wednesday at Columbus State University to educate several dozen managers from law enforcement agencies around the state on new legal issues that affect them, including the immigration law.
Many attendees said they had just begun to look at the law that was signed by the governor in mid-May, and that Wednesday’s meeting was the first in-depth explanation they’d heard.
“I think we’re going to need to fully understand the law before we start to enforce it,” said Columbus police Chief Ricky Boren, who attended the meeting.
While the new law will authorize law enforcement officers to detain anyone they determine is in the country illegally and to turn them over to federal authorities, they cannot do so unless federal immigration authorities agree to accept the person, Mann said. Often, immigration authorities prefer to focus on felony offenders, he said.
Many meeting attendees said they didn’t believe the new law would significantly affect their agencies’ operating procedures.
“It seems like a lot of parts of this law are things that law enforcement currently has the authority to do,” said Athens-Clarke County police Chief Jack Lumpkin.
The new law also penalizes people who, during the commission of another crime, knowingly transport or harbor illegal immigrants and makes it a felony with stiff penalties to present false documents or information when applying for a job. Another provision set to be phased in starting in January will require many businesses to check the immigration status of new hires.
The Georgia measure’s law enforcement provisions are very similar to those in a law enacted earlier this year in Utah and also echo some parts of a law enacted last year in Arizona. All or parts of both those laws have been blocked by federal judges.
For that reason, Mann said he’s a little hesitant to push forward with aggressive training on the new law.
It’s important for managers of law enforcement agencies to be aware of what the law says so they can start adjusting or replacing their operating procedures, and it will be discussed at statewide conventions for police chiefs and sheriffs and will be incorporated into ongoing training for officers and deputies, he said.
“I’m going into this slowly because I know there’s going to be a constitutional challenge. And I don’t want to have to go back and unteach anything if parts of the law are thrown out,” he said. “I don’t even know that this law will be in effect a year from now or what it will look like.”
Long Beach CA June 2 2011 A former Long Beach police officer has been formally sentenced to a year in jail for stealing weapons but will receive some credit for time already served behind bars.
Damian Ramos, 33, pleaded guilty in February to one count of embezzlement by a public officer after he took four firearms that were in police possession. Investigators recovered two of the four weapons.
He was originally charged with more than a dozen counts, including grand theft.
During his sentencing Wednesday, Ramos was given credit for 190 days of time already served. Because he pleaded to a “nonserious, nonviolent” felony, he received one day of credit for each day served in county jail, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office.
The terms of the former officer’s sentence also include three years of probation.
The issue has been raised before with the department, and at that time its director promised it would not happen again.
The women, a mother and daughter, filed thewsuit Thursday afternoon in circuit court in upper Marlboro. Proctor, an ordained minister, and her daughter Zanasha Walker say they went to the Prince George’s county detention center to visit a family member.
They women say they were told to remove their bras. They allege they had to walk through the jail without their underwear on since there was no private place to put their bras back on.
“The type of jersey blouse I was wearing, it exposed my breasts,” said Mary Proctor, one of the complainants.
The metal detectors at the security check went off, and the women say they removed their jewelry, shoes and belts. Then the guard asked them whether they were wearing bras with underwires.
“He was implying I had to remove my bra and then the other people said, ‘yeah we had to remove our bras,’” said one of the complainants.
The women say they went into a bathroom, took off their bras and then passed through the detectors. They claim security officers never passed the bras through the medal detectors.
Proctor and Walker say after they passed through security there was no place in the jail for them put their underwear back on.
Back in February, the director of the Department of Corrections apologized after an officer told several female visitors, including four defense attorneys, they had to remove their bras before passing through the metal detectors. The director clarified the department’s policy at the time, saying women did not have to remove their underwear if the detectors are set off.
“It’s a violation of the Maryland declaration of rights under sex because it only happens to women,” lawyer Jimmy Bell said.
David J. Schwalm, 27, of the 3400 block of West 26th Street, was placed in the Erie County Prison on $7,500 bond after he was arraigned before Erie 1st Ward District Judge Sue Mack late Wednesday afternoon.
Police accused Schwalm of causing a disturbance in a waiting area at the hospital. Schwalm punched a security guard in the eye during the incident, which happened at about 1:30 p.m., police said.