The body of Technical Trooper Ronald Knoefel, 48, was found Sunday near Abbyville in Reno County. Reno County investigators have determined Knoefel took his own life.
Memorials can be sent to:
Ronald Knoefel Children’s Education Fund
c/o Garnand Funeral Home
412 N. Seventh St.
Garden City, KS 67846.
Knoefel had worked for the Kansas Highway Patrol primarily as a technical trooper/public resource officer in Garden City.
He served as the law enforcement spokesperson at the scene of the May, 2007 Greensburg, Kansas tornado.
Funeral will begin at 10 a.m. Thursday at First Southern Baptist Church in Garden City. Graveside service will begin at 5 p.m. Thursday at Abbyville Cemetery
Clarksville IN July 28 2011 Police are investigating the death of a newborn found Friday with his twin sister in the toilet of a Clarksville motel room.
Officers found the baby girl Friday afternoon on top of the boy in the bathroom of a room at America’s Best Inn and Suites, said Clarksville Police Chief Dwight Ingle. The girl began crying when she was taken from the toilet, but police were unable to revive the boy, who was pronounced dead at Clark Memorial Hospital, he said.
The baby girl was listed Tuesday in good condition at Kosair Children’s Hospital, in the custody of Child Protective Services, Ingle said.
Neither the twin’s mother, Betsy L. Dalton, 36, nor her boyfriend, Jerry Conrad, 52, who called police to the motel room, have been charged in the case, Ingle said.
According to Clarksville police, the couple told officers they didn’t know Dalton was pregnant.
“It’s a sad situation,” Ingle said in an interview Tuesday, describing the couple as “mentally challenged” and saying he doesn’t believe any “malicious intent” was involved.
Clark County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Jeremy Mull said he will decide whether to file charges once he gets the investigative report from Clarksville police.
Neither Dalton nor Conrad could be reached for comment. Dalton was is in the Floyd County Jail on unrelated charges. Conrad did not respond to a card left at his motel room and did not answer a call to the room.
The babies were found about 3:40 p.m. Friday after Clarksville police were dispatched to America’s Best Inn and Suites, off Eastern Boulevard, Ingle said.
Ingle said he listened to a recording of the couple’s 911 call, and Dalton spoke first and asked the dispatchers to send help. He said Conrad then got on the phone and asked, “ ‘How do you get babies out of a commode?’ ”
Before the dispatcher could respond, officers who were nearby on an unrelated matter arrived at Room 174 and took the babies from the toilet, Ingle said.
He said Clarksville officers asked Dalton and Conrad several times what was wrong before they were directed to the bathroom.
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Clarksville Police Detective Ray Hall, who was interviewed Tuesday with Ingle, said that Dalton and Conrad told officers several times that they did not know Dalton was pregnant.
Ingle said Dalton told investigators that she felt like she had to go to the bathroom, and when she did so she felt what she thought were cramps and then delivered the babies.
Dalton was treated at Clark Memorial Hospital Friday and released to the custody of the Floyd County Jail for parole violations, including failure to report to her parole officer and failure to report a change of address.
She was on probation for a guilty plea made last year in a 2007 theft.
Former Kentucky Medical Examiner George Nichols said the incident is all too familiar.
Nichols estimated that he had one such case a year during his 20 years as Kentucky medical examiner.
He also testified in the 2009 murder trial of Bellarmine University student Kathryn McCoy, who delivered a baby in her dorm bathroom. The baby died and was found in a trash bag in a trash room.
The jury found McCoy guilty of tampering with evidence but not guilty of murder, manslaughter or reckless homicide.
Women don’t realize they are pregnant more often than most people realize, Nichols said. Those women — who may be in denial or simply may not be familiar with labor pains — often deliver their babies on the toilet, he said.
When that happens, the baby can drown in a little as a minute or die almost as quickly from exposure, Nichols said.
Clark County Coroner Edwin Coots said the autopsy was conducted Saturday by the Kentucky medical examiner, but the cause of the newborn’s death hasn’t been determined.
In such cases, Coots said, it can be difficult to make a determination because newborns are so small and fragile, and the required laboratory analysis may not be completed for up to six weeks.
Barbara Anderson, director of the Haven House Homeless Shelter in Jeffersonville, said Betsy Dalton was at the shelter for about three weeks in 2007 and was in and out of the shelter for several months after that, until shelter managers had to tell her not return because of behavioral problems.
“She would get angry and cuss people out” for little reason and often made decisions or acted erratically, Anderson said.
“There are people who need to be watched over, and she was one,” Anderson said, explaining that her shelter isn’t able to provide such care on a long-term basis.
Debbie Flores, a New Albany resident who was interviewed in the parking lot of America’s Best Inn and Suites Tuesday morning, said she came to the motel to express her support for Conrad, whom she’s known for a decade.
She also knows Dalton, Flores said.
Flores said she thinks the couple didn’t realize Dalton was pregnant and, when the babies came, “didn’t know what to do.”
BULLOCH COUNTY, GA July 28 2011 A Bulloch County teacher is under arrest for allegedly having sex with a former student.
The Sheriff’s Office arrested Amy Bass Jackson, 35, after the parents of the 14 year old boy came forward alleging that Jackson had slept with their son.
Bulloch County School officials say that Jackson taught 8th grade Language Arts at William James Middle School.
She has since resigned.
In a statement released this afternoon, Superintendent Dr. Lewis Holloway said, “We regret the impact this isolated incident will have on the affected parties and will continue to support them in their efforts to heal. Counselors will be available to students if needed. The School District will continue its efforts to educate every student with rigor, relevance and responsibility.”
Furthermore, Dr. Holloway said that the encounters happened off-campus.
Jackson is charged with one count of Aggravated Child Molestation, three counts of Child Molestation, one count of Statutory Rape, one count of Enticing a Child for Indecent Purposes, one count of Sexual Assault by Persons with Supervisory or Disciplinary Authority, two counts of Computer or Electronic Child Exploitation, one count of Sexual Exploitation of Children and six counts of Furnishing Harmful Material to Minors.
She is currently being held at the Bulloch County Jail without bond.
A 12-count indictment alleges that Gene Gillette, 27, shot a man in the 700 block of Glacier Avenue after assaulting him, touching his genitals and trying to sexually assault him, officials said in a statement.
Two law enforcement sources said that the altercation happened over an attempted sexual encounter in Gillette’s house and that the officer shot the victim as he tried to flee in Gillette’s car. The sources said Gillette lured the victim to the home with a promise of making a pornographic movie with women, but no women were at the house.
Gillette turned himself in to Prince George’s police Tuesday night. Gillette was placed on suspension without pay, and his police powers were revoked, Mount Rainier Police Chief Michael Scott said.
Gillette won top honors from the department. He was named Rookie of the Year in 2008 and Officer of the Year in 2009 and 2010, according to reports by Scott. Gillette also led the department in making criminal arrests and issuing traffic citations in 2010.
The condition of the shooting victim was not immediately clear.
Mallisham is charged with violating the constitutional rights of three jail detainees by using a stun gun to illegally punish the detainees during separate incidents over a four month period in 2008. The indictment alleges that each of the three detainees suffered bodily injury as a result of Mallisham’s use of the stun gun against them.
Mallisham faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 on each count.
This case, which is ongoing, is being investigated by the Tuscaloosa resident agency of the FBI’s Birmingham Field Office, and is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney D.W. Tunnage of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, along with Assistant U.S. Attorney Tamarra Matthews Johnson for the Northern District of Alabama.
EUGENE, Ore. July 28 2011- A suspect in handcuffs jumped into the Willamette River as Eugene police arrived to take him into custody from University of Oregon campus safety officers.
The incident happened just before 5 p.m.
Eugene police said officers were picking up the suspect from campus safety when the man ran away and jumped in the river.
Police went after him with the help of firefighters.
He was captured near the Frohnmayer (formerly Autzen) footbridge about 20 minutes later after floating on his back.
Police said the suspect has municipal court warrants for failure to appear in court.
NORTH FORT MYERS, FL July 28 2011 – UPDATE: Fort Myers police have arrested John Drew in connection with the robbery of a CVS pharmacy in North Fort Myers. Drew faces robbery charges.
UPDATE: The CVS robbery suspect has been identified as 35-year-old John Drew, according to Lee County deputies. They say that he is in custody and that their investigation is ongoing at this time.
A man walked into a North Fort Myers CVS Thursday just after noon and stole medication from the pharmacy, according to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies say the suspect, a man in his 30s, walked in the door, went to the pharmacy counter and handed the pharmacist a note demanding medication.
The man waited as she read the note, then the pharmacist gave him the drugs he asked for.
When she handed him the medicine, he took off.
The man was between 5’7″ and 5’9″ tall, with brown hair, wearing a turquoise Miami Dolphins ball cap, a red shirt and blue jean shorts.
If you have any information, contact the Lee County Sheriff’s Office or Crime Stoppers at 800-780-TIPS.
Authorities arrested Donavan McComas and Katrina Scanga Tuesday after they tried to steal several expensive items from the department store.
Investigators said they tried to shoplift more than $1,300 worth of electronics and personal items. McComas planned to walk out of the store with a cart, while Scanga stood watch outside. Police said the two used walkie talkies to communicate but employees noticed the suspicious behavior.
“Apparently she was on the radio telling him this is not a good time and you probably need to leave. That is when he left the cart,” said Post Falls Police Department Sgt. Gary James.
Both suspects were released from prison last year in Colorado. Authorities said McComas was already wanted to violating parole.
Both will likely be extradited back to Colorado for sentencing.
Shallotte NC July 28 2011 State investigators arrested a Shallotte police officer Monday on suspicion of defrauding an insurance company in order to acquire a lump sum payout, authorities said.
Thirty-five year-old Eric Proctor King, who is pictured on Shallotte’s website as a sergeant with the city’s police department, was arrested along with his girlfriend, 41-year-old Leah Rasa Cunningham. Each face charges of insurance fraud and obtaining property by false pretenses.
In announcing the arrests, the N.C. Department of Insurance said Tuesday that the couple is accused of making false statements to GMAC Insurance regarding a traffic accident that involved Cunningham on Jan. 27, 2011. As a result of the claim, the insurance company made a $10,000 payment to King, the department said.
The suspects, both of 1450 Grace Road in Southport, were processed through the Brunswick County jail about 2:30 p.m. Monday, given a $10,000 unsecured bond and released less than two hours later, according to April Stanley, a spokeswoman for the Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office.
The Shallotte Police Department could not be immediately reached for comment.
The probe into King and Cunningham’s dealings with the insurance provider was conducted by the Department of Insurance Criminal Investigations Division and the State Bureau of Investigation.
Salt Lake City Utah July 28 2011 Seventeen months after reaching the pinnacle of his career by winning a silver medal at the Vancouver Olympics, U.S. freestyle skier Jeret “Speedy” Peterson was found dead in a remote canyon in Utah in what police are calling a suicide.
Peterson, known for his difficult “Hurricane” move, a three-flip, five-twist trick he first landed in 2004, had called emergency services before shooting himself, police said. Peterson, 29, had been cited for drunken driving Friday in Idaho and pleaded not guilty. Officers said they found Peterson late Monday between Salt Lake City and Park City, Utah, in Lambs Canyon.
On Feb. 26, 2010, Peterson walked off the Olympic mountain after winning the silver medal with tears streaming down his face.
“I know that a lot of people go through a lot of things in their life, and I just want them to realize they can overcome anything,” Peterson said at the time. “There’s light at the end of the tunnel and mine was silver, and I love it.”
Peterson had been to two other Winter Games, but even with the Hurricane, considered the most-difficult trick in the sport, the skier from Boise had been disappointing. He finished ninth in Salt Lake City in 2002 and seventh in Torino in 2006.
He had been in third place in 2006 with with one jump to go. He tried a Hurricane, but his hand touched the snow, a violation that ended his medal chances.
Peterson also had problems with alcohol and depression and had admitted to thoughts of suicide, stemming from a childhood in which he was sexually abused and lost his 5-year-old sister in an accident involving a drunken driver.
“The entire Olympic family is heartbrokento hear the news of Jeret “Speedy” Peterson’s untimely passing,” U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun said in a statement. “I know Speedy’s friends and family were incredibly proud of his effort in Vancouver, and his achievements were an inspiration to people all over the world. “The personal challenges Speedy has battled are familiar to all of us.”
Billy Demong, an Olympic gold medalist in Nordic combined who had trained with Peterson in Lake Placid, N.Y. and Steamboat Springs, Colo., said, “He’s a really nice guy; he’s been a good friend. I know that he’s had a roller coaster of a journey.”
Aerials skier Emily Cook was a teammate and friend of Peterson’s, competing alongside him at the last two Olympics.
“Speedy was an amazing athlete,” she said Tuesday night through a U.S. Ski Team spokesman. “I will always remember jumping alongside him as he pushed the sport, himself and his teammates to be the best. In addition to being the incredible athlete that we all knew, Speedy was a true friend. His loyalty and commitment to each of his teammates was unwavering and he will be missed by all who knew and loved him.”
U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association President and CEO Bill Marolt, called Peterson “a great champion who will be missed and remembered as a positive, innovative force on not only his sport of freestyle aerials, but on the entire U.S. Freestyle Ski Team family and everyone he touched.”
Queens NY July 28 2011 A former Queens boxer is fighting to knock out a federal ruling that he can’t work as an airport screener because he was born with only one hand.
Michael Constantino, 32, insists he’s perfectly capable of working as a screener for the Transportation Security Administration.
“Anyone that knows me knows it’s ridiculous for them to say I can’t open luggage,” Constantino told the Daily News. “I’ve fought in the Golden Gloves. I work out with former world champions. Opening luggage would be pretty easy for me.”
After a medical examination, the TSA determined Constantino couldn’t perform the job safely or efficiently.
Constantino, of Whitestone, has filed a formal complaint with the TSA. His lawyer, Jonathan Bell, is confident the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission will reverse the TSA’s decision and order the agency to pay for lost wages.
“They just made an assumption that he can’t perform this job simply because he doesn’t have a right hand – without any evidence to support it,” Bell said.
The TSA never allowed Constantino to prove he could perform the tasks necessary to be an airport screener.
“The federal government is supposed to be a model employer, and this is what they do?” the lawyer said. “It’s a disgrace.”
Constantino applied online for a Transportation Security Officer position about two years ago after he lost his gig as a deli manager.
“It sounded like a good job with good benefits,” Constantino said.
After applying for the TSA job, Constantino passed an online exam and cleared a background check.
In an interview with two officials about seven months ago, Constantino’s disability was never brought up, he said. Not once was he asked about his missing right hand or any limitations it might cause him. Constantino walked out of the interview thinking he had landed the job. All that stood in his way, he believed, was a routine medical exam.
But shortly after the exam, Constantino received an email from the TSA informing him of his “medical disqualification” because of the loss of his right hand.
“It was a tough time,” he said. “I was definitely depressed.”
In the February email, the agency argued he couldn’t properly conduct patdown searches using his palms or the backs of his hands.
They said he couldn’t open zippers or snaps, record baggage tag information in logs or use his hands to detect prohibited items. He can’t inspect lockets, pillboxes or medication, the agency’s contracted doctors said.
The TSA suggested Constantino might still qualify for other positions within the agency or other federal jobs.
Constantino, who started sparring 10 years ago, once won “Boxer of the Night” honors at the Golden Gloves. He pummeled his first foe at the Daily News-sponsored tournament in 2002. Constantino went 2-3 in the 178-pound weight class before walking away from the ring.
Now, he feels he’s fighting for everyone else with a disability.
“I’m going to keep going so this doesn’t happen again,” said Constantino, who has recently resumed training. “It’s wrong what they did, and they should learn from their mistakes.”
ALLIANCE, Ohio July 28 2011- A 23-year-old security guard going to school for law enforcement was arrested Tuesday, accused of stealing a bullet-proof vest from the Alliance Police Department.
Detectives said the man stole the vest from the police locker room on June 30, when he was at the station for a civilian ride-along.
They said he entered the bathroom and proceeded into the officers’ locker room where he found the vest airing out and put it on under his shirt and left the department. Surveillance video caught him on video with the vest outline under his shirt.
He was taken to the Stark County Jail.
Alliance police said the incident will not deter efforts to familiarize the public on what we do through the practice of civilian ride-alongs.
“We have allowed over 300 in the past year. This was, however, very disappointing to us,” police posted on their Facebook page.
Salem police said Danielle Doucette, 21, reported that she was assaulted and robbed at the Mall at Rockingham Park on Tuesday. Police said Doucette told them she was followed out of the mall by two Hispanic men who then attacked her, grabbing and ripping her shirt and knocking her to the ground.
Police said Doucette told investigators that the men stole $250 from her during the attack. She said she then went to her boyfriend’s house before calling police.
Investigators said they reviewed the mall’s security video but couldn’t find any video of Doucette, the attackers or any evidence of the assault. Police said Doucette then told them that the incident never happened, and she made up the story because she owed her boyfriend money.
Doucette was released on $500 cash bail.
MILLSBORO, DEL.July 28 2011 — A 53-year-old Lincoln man has been arrested on 14 charges of rape in what state police described as a two-week investigation into sexual assaults at Mountaire Farms, in Millsboro.
Cpl. Bruce Harris said four female Mountaire employees made allegations of “unwanted, continuous sexual advances and encounters” by Ronald F. Tate, 53, of Lincoln, the company’s security and facilities manager.
Harris said that detectives discovered that between October, 2010, and July, 2011, Tate allegedly “at least 14 times sexually assaulted two of the four victims inside his office located on the Mountaire Farms complex.”
“The two other victims reported that on several occasions Tate inappropriately touched parts of their bodies, which made them feel uncomfortable, while inside his office or while acting in his official capacity as the plant security manager,” Harris said.
Tate was charged with 14 counts of second-degree rape, two counts of sexual extortion, three counts of third-degree unlawful sexual conduct and sexual harassment. He was committed to Sussex Correctional Institution in lieu of $415,000 secured bond, and the police investigation into the accusations continues.
Derick Kuilan, 30, was in uniform on July 3 with fellow Miami Beach police officer Rolando Gutierrez when they visited South Beach hotel club. The two officers were allegedly drinking and taking pictures with a group of women.
According to a Circuit Court affidavit, the five women were attending a bachelorette party and “did not believe [Kulian and Gutierrez] were real police officers” since “the behavior of both officers was so unprofessional.” After leaving the hotel club, Kuilan and one of the women mounted an ATV for a ride along the beach. Two witenesses described Kuilan’s ATV as “driving fast on the sand” and without headlights in the pre-dawn hours. The two witnesses heard the ATV and caught a glimpse of it seconds before they heard “a loud impact” as the ATV struck a man and woman walking on the shore.
The woman remains hospitalized after suffering a broken femur and having her spleen removed. The man suffered a broken bone that required surgery. Both victims are 29 years old.
Kuilan and Gutierrez have been fired from the Miami Beach Police Department. Kulian was booked July 26 on four felony counts into the Miami-Dade County Jail before being released on $30,000 bail.
ATLANTA GA July 28 2011 – TSA officers said they caught one person trying to get a gun through Hartsfield-Jackson airport security and then, 20 minutes, later caught another.
Atlanta police arrested Kimberly Farmer and Rolando Buigas on charges of carrying a weapon in an unauthorized place on Tuesday.
Farmer’s husband told Channel 2’s Tom Jones he received a phone call from his frantic wife from the Clayton County Jail.
“Said that ‘I’m in trouble. I’m in bad trouble,’” Stacy Farmer said.
Police said Farmer tried to take a .22 caliber Beretta that was in her luggage through the security checkpoint.
An X-ray machine discovered the weapon. Stacy Farmer said his wife, who has a concealed carry permit, didn’t know it was there.
“She had no idea this gun was in her bag. She had totally forgot about it,” he said.
Farmer appeared in court on the same day as Buigas.
Magistrate Judge Beatriz Scott read the accusations against him.
“You did bring a weapon a Glock .40 caliber in the checkpoint south of the Hartsfield-Jackson Airport,” she said. She set bond for each at $5,000.
Finding guns at checkpoints is becoming more common in Atlanta.
TSA officials said out of the 450 airports across the country, officers find two handguns at checkpoints on average each day.
Spokesman Jon Allen says Atlanta is a different story.
“Here in Atlanta, just over the last two months alone there have been 15 that were identified. This is the second time within two months that there was a discovery of more than one in a day,” Allen said.
Allen said that may be because Atlanta is so busy and because of summer travel. He’s urging everyone to check their bags before coming to the airport.
“If you bring it to the airport, we’re going to find it,” he said.
Farmer said his wife carries the gun for protection as she does business in Atlanta and has to visit dangerous areas.
“She carries it in a side pocket in her purse so she can access it in a worst-case scenario,” he said.
Farmer said his wife has never been in trouble and is a law-abiding citizen. He says this incident has shaken her. “Scariest thing she’s ever been through in her life,” he said.
The TSA said, “You can not only face criminal charges, miss your flight and have your weapon confiscated for bringing a gun to the airport, but you can also face a civil fine up to $10,000.”