Memphis TN Feb 19 2012 It took two tries for former Memphis police lieutenant Timothy Green to convince a court that he accepted responsibility for taking bribes, but at the end of a lengthy sentencing hearing he still received more than four years in prison.
Green was a 25-year veteran of the department when he and two patrolmen were caught taking payoffs from a rough Hickory Hill nightclub in exchange for tip-offs when undercover officers would be coming to the club.
“The information Lt. Green was sharing basically outs the identity of the undercover officers, and he’s putting a fellow officer in harm’s way,” federal prosecutor Brian Coleman said. “I can’t think of a worse action an officer can take.”
Green, 47, pleaded guilty last year to conspiracy to commit bribery and extortion, and aiding and abetting, but federal prosecutors and U.S. Dist. Court Judge S. Thomas Anderson found the former officer’s statement Thursday in court lacking in detail and remorse.
In one brief, his attorneys had argued that Green did not take bribes, but only accepted “unauthorized compensation,” though they did not pursue that position Thursday.
Green was given a second chance to acknowledge his crimes, finally winning a slight reduction in his sentence that comes with acceptance of responsibility. He faced up to 57 months under advisory federal sentencing guidelines and was sentenced to 50 months.
“I know what I was doing at the time was wrong,” said Green, adding that he was a little nervous in his first statement. “I accepted money while I was on duty…. It was definitely out of character. I’m ashamed of what I have done. I apologize to the other officers, to the court, to my family and to the city.”
He was caught on secretly recorded video taking payoffs of up to $1,000 from owners of Club Visions at 3684 Ridgeway to overlook drug trafficking, gang violence and other nuisance violations, and to warn them of upcoming undercover operations inside the club.
Former officer Michael Young was sentenced last year to six months in federal prison, while former officer Christopher Crawford is scheduled to be sentenced next month. Both pleaded guilty to taking bribes.
Authorities said the three received more than $12,000 in bribes between October 2009 and February 2010, with most of the money going to Green, who was in charge of gathering evidence against the club on drug trafficking, gang violence and other criminal activity.
Green accepted 11 payoffs totaling some $8,400, while Young accepted 27 payoffs totaling $2,650 and Crawford accepted 14 payoffs totaling $1,460, according to court papers.
FBI agent Matthew Ross of the Tarnished Badge Task Force on law enforcement corruption said video surveillance was set up after a manager at the club said Green and other officers were accepting money from the owners.
Ross said some 200 secret recordings were made during the investigation. “We narrowed it down to about 45 minutes of greatest hits, if you will, and started to show it to him. He stopped us less than halfway through.”
On the video, Green is seen accepting bundles of cash and putting it in the coat pocket of his uniform. He also tells the owners he needs more money to pay the other officers and promises to change a report on a stabbing to falsely indicate it occurred next door to the club and not at the club itself.
Defense attorneys Dewun Settle and Sam Perkins argued that Young and Crawford already were on the take and downplayed the prosecution argument that Green was the organizer and leader. They also noted his otherwise distinguished career which they documented in a thick folder entered into the court record.
“He is a warm, loving, caring human being,” said Perkins, adding that Green has lost his career and shamed himself and those around him. “That’s punishment. He did it to himself. It doesn’t need to be that much time.”
Green will remain free until notified in about six weeks where he will serve his sentence.
Source:the commercial appeal
MEMPHIS, TN Feb 19 2012 - A 56-year-old man is behind bars after he pulled a knife on a security guard at the Memphis Academy of Science and Engineering.
Memphis Police were called to the school’s campus on Thursday, February 16, 2012.
When they arrived, the school’s security guard had the suspect, Novell Campbell, in handcuffs. The guard told officers he saw Campbell trying to talk to some of the students and was told to leave school property. The suspect refused, pulled out a pocketknife, and threatened to cut the guard.
The guard used a chemical spray on Campbell and struggled to subdue him until police arrived. Campbell was treated at The MED for minor injuries before he was taken to jail.
Novell Campbell was arrested and charged with Aggravated Assault, Aggravated Criminal Trespass and Carrying a Weapon on School Property. He is currently being held at the Shelby County Jail on $15,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in court Feb. 20.
Former pediatric nurse from Oregon Health and Sciences University arrested on child pornography charges www.privateofficer.com
PORTLAND OR Feb 19 2012 – A former pediatric nurse from Oregon Health and Sciences University was arrested Thursday on child pornography charges.
OHSU said Bryan Corbitt faced possession and distribution charges and was booked into the Clark County jail. The hospital said he resigned from his position at the Doernbecher intensive care unit on February 10 after federal officials informed them of the investigation.
Corbitt began working at the OHSU unit in July 2002.
He was not charged with creating any pornographic material, OHSU said. It was not believed any patients were involved.
The U.S. Department of Justice said a federal agent working undercover traced a suspect with the screen name “Kidluver” sharing files of child pornography to Corbitt’s Washougal home in November.
“Mr. Corbitt’s arrest is deeply troubling to us and I know it will be to all of you,” administrator Scott Turner said. “Our patients trust us with their care, and we will all work to continue to deserve that trust by upholding the very highest standards of personal and professional conduct.”
Investigators said four non-explicit photos from a patient’s family were emailed from his OHSU account to his private account.
Federal authorities deemed that not relevant to their investigation, but OHSU said it violated their policies and the family was notified.
Anyone with questions was asked to call a toll-free hotline at (855) 650-3900, with concerns, and to view frequently asked questions online at http://www.ohsu.edu/nurseFAQ.
Hope, Ark. Feb 19 2012— On Thursday February 16, 2012, Hempstead County Investigators arrested 27 year old Monica Lee Teel of Murfreesboro for sexual assault in the first degree.
Teel, a Murfreesboro High School Civics teacher turned herself in to Hempstead County investigators at the sheriff’s office at approximately 9 a.m. yesterday.
The Crimes Against Children Division of the Arkansas State Police notified sheriff’s investigators of an incident that had been reported where a teacher and one of her students were meeting at a cabin in Northern Hempstead County to have sex.
Hempstead County Sheriff’s investigator’s launched an investigation into the matter which resulted in Ms. Teel turning herself into sheriff’s investigators yesterday morning.
Teel was booked into the Hempstead County Detention Center at approximately 10:30 a.m. on one count of Sexual Assault in the First Degree, She is awaiting a first court appearance.
CROSS CITY, Fla. Feb 19 2012 (AP) — It’s a generational thing: Deputies in Florida say a man, his daughter and his grandson, along with a fourth person said to be a family relative, are accused of working together to manufacture methamphetamine.
Dixie County Sheriff’s officials say 54-year-old Allen J. Brannin, his 34-year-old daughter, Amy M. Brannin, and her 18-year-old son, Austin J. Brannin, were arrested Thursday. Another relative, 18-year-old Tyler W. Cannon, was also arrested.
The Gainesville Sun ( http://bit.ly/wZOyJA ) reports the suspects were arrested after deputies served a search warrant at their Cross City home.
Sheriff’s Maj. Scott Harden says it’s hard to imagine someone “cooking up meth” with their daughter or grandson, let alone both.
The four were booked into the Dixie County Jail.
Charleston SC Feb 19 2012 Authorities have confirmed that the body found in a S.C. national forest Friday is that of Dara Watson, the 30-year-old Boone native police now say was killed by her fiancé.
The announcement, made Saturday by police in South Carolina, marks the tragic end to weeklong search for Watson, who was reported missing a day before her fiancé committed suicide in the couple’s home in a Charleston suburb.
Police told The (Charleston) Post and Courier that they believe her fiancé, 34-year-old David Hedrick, shot Watson in the head on Feb. 6 or 7 at their Mount Pleasant home and took her body to a wooded area in the nearby Francis Marion National Forest.
That’s where he buried her in a shallow grave about 60 yards from where he torched her SUV and abandoned it there, police said.
Watson, who graduated with honors in accounting from Appalachian State University, was last seen Feb. 6 after visiting her family in Boone with Hedrick.
The couple returned to their home, according to reports, and friends and relatives said they received text messages from Watson’s phone on Feb. 7 and 8. But police later said they believe Hedrick sent those messages on her phone.
A missing person report for Watson was filed Feb. 9. The next morning, police talked to Hedrick, who claimed he and Watson had an argument and she left in her SUV.
A few hours after he spoke with police, Hedrick’s body was discovered in his home, with a handgun nearby. Police said he killed himself.
Investigators said they discovered evidence that Hedrick may have planned to leave town after the shooting, reports The Post and Courier. A resignation letter was discovered on his computer.
Over the next several days, police searched near the couple’s home and in the Francis Marion National Forest, where Watson’s burned-out SUV was discovered and where a witness told police Hedrick had been seen carrying a shovel.
On Friday, searchers found a body, and authorities used dental records to identify it as Watson, according to the Post and Courier.
Friends attended vigils for Watson, an adventurous young woman who’d traveled the world, in both Boone and Mount Pleasant on Friday evening. In Boone, they gathered outside Watson’s parents’ store, Watsonatta Western World on King Street.
Amanda Stroud, Watson’s cousin, told the Observer that Watson and Hedrick had planned to marry in Fiji in November. She said her family was shocked by Watson’s death.
“She inspired everyone around her to live their lives to the fullest,” Stroud said. “And she did.”
Berks County PA Feb 19 2012 A Pennsylvania constable from Birdsboro has been arrested on charges that he had sex with a 15-year-old he met online.
A warrant for the arrest of Bradley Andrew Buchanan of the 400 block of East Third Street in Birdsboro was issued Feb. 17 following an investigation by detectives from the district attorney’s child abuse unit. Buchanan, accompanied by his attorney, surrendered to detectives at the Berks County Detectives office.
He has been charged with statutory sexual assault, aggravated indecent assault, indecent assault, indecent exposure, Corruption of minors, unlawful contact with a minor and luring a child into a motor vehicle.
According to detectives, an investigation was launched Feb. 7 after they received a report from the Birdsboro Police Department relative to a possible child sexual abuse incident.
Detectives allege that between Jan. 1 to Feb. 5, 2012, Buchanan knowingly and intentionally sent inappropriate sexual messages to a 15-year-old female via Facebook. The messages were initially discovered by the victim’s mother.
According to detectives, during the course of the investigation, they learned that Buchanan had “friended” the victim online and the pair corresponded on a daily basis.
The charges allege Buchanan knew the victim was only 15, and he “continued to send sexually related messages to her.”
On one occasion, detectives said Buchanan convinced the victim to go for a walk, and picked her up in his vehicle a short distance from her home.
He then allegedly drove her to the Lake Drive Recreational Park in Douglassville where he parked the vehicle and had sexual intercourse with her. During the assault, Buchanan reportedly used a condom that was packaged in a blue wrapper, then drove her back to where he had picked her up.
On Feb. 10, detectives obtained search warrants for Buchanan’s residence and his vehicle. His cell phone and condoms packaged in blue wrappers were seized.
Buchanan was awaiting video arraignment Friday afternoon. He has been a State Constable for more than one year with Magisterial District Judge Dave E. Glass (District 23-3-01).
Los Angeles CA Feb 19 2012 A teacher at Mount Gleason Middle School in Sunland has been removed from the classroom as police investigate allegations of “inappropriate conduct,” officials said Friday.
The teacher, who was not identified by the Los Angeles Police Department or the Los Angeles Unified School District, has not been arrested.
Police are looking into accusations that the teacher molested three children, according to KNBC-TV Channel 4. The allegations were made to police Thursday, an LAPD source told The Times.
Los Angeles Unified officials sent students home with a letter about the investigation and said in a statement that it is working closely with the LAPD. The statement said that the school district was directed by police not to release further details.
“Crisis counselors and psychiatric social workers are available to work with students that might be impacted by the removal of the teacher,” the statement said. “The district takes each and every reported act of misconduct seriously. We are committed to aggressively pursuing each case to determine the truth and, if necessary, initiate the appropriate disciplinary measures.”
The Mount Gleason investigation is the latest of several reported in the wake of the late January arrest of former Miramonte Elementary teacher Mark Berndt on 23 counts of lewd conduct. Lawsuits against a former Hamilton High music teacher and the arrest of a Telfair Elementary teacher are among those that also have come to light.
The district’s handling of the Mount Gleason teacher is typical for such cases: Instructors are pulled from their classrooms and kept away from students during an investigation. L.A. Unified typically begins its own internal investigation only after police detectives have finished their work. A teacher can still face discipline or dismissal even if no criminal charges are filed.
Philadelphia PA Feb 19 2012 A 41-year-old man was arrested Friday night on seven charges of aggravated assault and weapons violations after a drunken rampage inside a West Philadelphia apartment, police said.
About 10:30 p.m., Stanley Jones – a security guard who has a permit to carry a gun – arrived at his apartment building on 51st Street near Locust and saw his 26-year-old girlfriend standing outside.
Police said Jones was drunk, and suspected that his girlfriend was waiting outside to meet another man.
The couple started arguing outside, and took the fight to the bedroom of their third-floor apartment, police said.
Eventually, Jones pulled his gun from his holster and his girlfriend told police she thought he was going to put it in the closet.
Instead, he pointed the gun at her.
Jones said, “You think I’m stupid, I know what’s going on,” said Lt. John Walker of the Southwest Detective Division.
The woman pleaded with him and told him there were children on the other side of the door. Two of the woman’s friends – and her friends’ three children – were inside the apartment at the time.
Jones fired a shot at the door and the woman begged him to stop, Walker said. He fired a second shot at the door, then slipped on a pile of clothes and fell to the floor.
The woman jumped on top of Jones and tried to wrestle the gun away. During the scuffle, a third shot was fired through the floor and into the bedroom of an apartment on the second floor.
The bullet missed a 24-year-old woman who was lying in bed by about five feet. Two children, ages 1 and 8, were also in the second-floor apartment at the time, Walker said.
Police arrived on the scene and found crying children and their parents outside. They told cops that Jones was inside and was armed with a gun, Walker said. Police rushed into the building and found Jones inside the apartment.
“They see Mr. Jones standing there with the gun in his right hand, they’re able to disarm him and bring him into custody,” Walker said.
Jones put up a fight and was tazed twice until he could be subdued, Walker said.
He was being treated at Mercy Hospital early Saturday morning, and is awaiting arraignment.
US Airways employee stuck in conveyer belt dies at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport www.privateofficer.com
Phoenix AZ Feb 19 2012 A US Airways employee died Friday at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport after he accidentally became lodged between two conveyor belts in the baggage system, authorities said.
Robert Demarco, 60, was working about 11:50 a.m. in the U.S. Transportation Security Administration’s checked- baggage inspection area of Terminal 4 when he became stuck between the upper and lower conveyor belts of the baggage system, said Officer James Holmes, a Phoenix police spokesman.
Phoenix police officers and Fire Department paramedics responded to the inspection area, where Demarco was pronounced dead.
Holmes described the incident as a “tragic accident” and said there were no indications of foul play.
Phoenix police detectives are working to determine exactly how and why the situation occurred, officials said.
Demarco’s body will be turned over to the Maricopa County Medical Examiner’s Office.
WASECA MN Feb 19 2012 — On Jan. 30, Joshua Johnson, 30, of Maywood, Illinois, was charged with three counts of felony assault for punching two men who were working security at PJs Tavern in Waseca, one of whom was knocked unconscious and suffered a seizure due to repeated blows to the head.
According to the criminal complaint, police received a call on Jan. 29 about a fight that had broken out at PJ’s Tavern at approximately 12:45 a.m. When officers arrived at the bar they found the first male victim having a seizure on the dance floor. An ambulance and emergency medical technicians were dispatched to the scene.
The police report stated that officers also found a second male victim spitting up a large amount of blood outside the entrance to the bar. The victims are brothers and are employed as security for PJ’s Tavern.
According to the complaint, the second male victim told police that he and his brother had been escorting Johnson out of the bar because he had been trying to fight a female patron. Johnson punched the first victim in the face twice, which resulted in a seizure. Then Johnson punched the second male victim in the face, breaking off one of his teeth at the gum line and splitting his upper line, according to the complaint.
The cut on the second victim’s lip required stitches.
Johnson was charged with one count of first degree assault, which carries a penalty of 20 years in prison and a $30,000 fine, or both. He was also charged with two counts of third degree assault; each count carries a penalty of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine, or both.
Johnson is scheduled to appear in Waseca County Court April 14 at 1:45 p.m.
Joliet IL Feb 19 2012 A Carson Pirie Scott & Co. loss-prevention agent from Plainfield and two Joliet residents have been charged with armed robbery in connection with a Nov. 11 holdup at the Louis Joliet Mall department store.
Jose L. Mejia, 23, of the 2900 block of Sierra Ave. in Plainfield, Norma L. Ibarra, 22, of the 2400 block of Byrum Blvd. in Joliet and Christian G. Ibarra, 18, of the same address, appeared in bond court this afternoon on charges of armed robbery with a firearm and aggravated unlawful restraint.
Police say that the trio with insie knowledge from the security guard robbed the store and fled with an unspecified amount of cash.
PHOENIX AZ Feb 19 2012 (AP) – Authorities say a man who’s a fourth-grade teacher in the Paradise Valley School District has been arrested in a sexual exploitation case.
Phoenix police say 54-year-old Thomas H. Warner was taken into custody Monday on suspicion of 10 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor.
Police detectives from the Arizona Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force served a search warrant for child pornography at Warner’s home and say they found numerous items of child pornography.
Police say Warner has been employed by the Paradise Valley School District for the past several years.
He’s been booked into the Maricopa County Jail, but it was unclear Monday afternoon whether he has a lawyer yet.
Portsmouth VA Feb 19 2012 A Chesapeake man is now facing charges for indecent liberties with a 12-year-old boy. The charges are related to two incidents that occurred in 1978 and 1979 in Portsmouth, while the suspect was visiting the area.
The victim says that the teacher is acting inappropriately with children again.
On February 17, 2012, Portsmouth detectives arrested and charged 57-year-old Clarence Cornelius Sykes of the 3000 block of Clover Meadows Drive, Chesapeake. He was charged with two counts of indecent liberties with a minor.
According to police, detectives received information in late January 2012 that lead to opening an investigation.
The suspect was living and working in Lynchburg, Virginia during that time. The victim was a juvenile male.
For many of his students, the news is hard to believe.
“It’s unbelievable. I can’t even see him doing something like that,” says one of the students.
Police say he admitted to acting inappropriately with at least a dozen other children.
Portsmouth schools have suspended Sykes without pay. This was his first year back at the school after taking a break.
He is on house arrest at this time.
BOSTON MA Feb 19 2012 - An alert officer making a transaction at an ATM in downtown Boston apprehended a bank robber immediately after the suspect robbed the bank.
Christopher Washburn, 34, who gave a Quincy address at booking but told officers he was homeless, was arraigned on Wednesday on charges of unarmed robbery, assault and battery on a public employee, and resisting arrest.
Wasburn allegedly handed a note reading “money no die pack” to a teller at the Citizen’s Bank at One Center Plaza Tuesday afternoon at about 12:30 p.m. When the teller handed him cash, Washburn allegedly bolted from the lobby – right past a plainclothes Boston Police detective using the cash machine outside.
The officer noticed Washburn was behaving suspiciously prior to using the ATM. As he walked away, he noticed the suspect running out of the bank and fleeing up Somerset Street.
After a brief struggle in a nearby parking garage, the officer took the suspect into custody.
At one point during the pursuit, the suspect told the officer that he had a knife and would stab him if he tried to make an arrest. When the officer brandished his firearm, Washburn’s tone changed and he began yelling “shoot me, shoot me.”
Two Suffolk County Sheriffs arrived while the officer was struggling with the suspect, and assisted the officer in taking the suspect into custody.
Officers recovered about $200 in cash on the ground, where Washburn had apparently tried to discard it, and about $1000 from his right front pants pocket. The total amount recovered matched exactly the amount reported taken during the stick-up.
Washburn is due back in court on March 8.
Raleigh NC Feb 19 2012 A Raleigh police officer accused of having sex with an underage prostitute made an initial appearance in court Friday.
Jason Brandon Hoyle, 34, of the 8600 block of Maryel Way in Raleigh, is charged with promoting prostitution of a minor and participating in the prostitution of a minor. He is free on $100,000
Hoyle is accused of paying a 17-year-old prostitute $140 for sex at the Fairfield Inn by Marriott on Cedar Creek Road on Feb. 7.
Police allege the girl stole a Raleigh police-owned laptop computer, an Apple iPhone 4 and $800 after the encounter. She has been charged with solicitation for prostitution, larceny and possessing stolen property.
At the hearing Friday, District Court Judge Toni King read the charges against Hoyle and set a court date for March 7 at 9 a.m. Hoyle was accompanied by his lawyer, David Boliek, and declined a public defender.
There were, however, a few unusual circumstances for the hearing. Ronnie Mitchell, the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office attorney, personally drove Hoyle and Boliek to the hearing, swiping his badge to allow them to access the building from a side door that is locked to the public.
Reporters earlier in the day had put in a request to allow cameras in the courtroom and were told by jail staff that King had granted it. But immediately before the hearing, a bailiff told reporters cameras would not be permitted.
Mitchell denied Hoyle was receiving special treatment because he is a police officer. He said Hoyle had been allowed access to the side door because Mitchell had to deal with Boliek on unrelated matters. He said he would grant any other defendant access through the same door in a similar situation.
Mitchell also said the chief jailer, Maj. John McRainey, has to approve requests for cameras to be in the courtroom along with the judge, and that McRainey had banned cameras from the courtroom Friday because the agency’s public information officer, Debbie Tanna, was out of the office and “they had a lot going on.”
Mitchell declined to specify what else was going on in the jail “for security reasons.”
“Particularly when you have a lot of other folks, for security reasons it takes time and effort and manpower,” Mitchell said. “It’s a question of Maj. McRainey saying, ‘Look, we just don’t have that number of people that we need.’ “
SANDPOINT, Idaho Feb 19 2012– A Ponderay man has been sentenced for hitting a bar bouncer with his car as the bouncer tried to keep him from driving drunk.
The Bonner County Daily Bee reports 47-year-old Michael John Edwards was sentenced on Feb. 9 to two- to four-years for aggravated assault, but 1st District Judge Steve Verby retained jurisdiction, meaning he could review the sentence in six months. Edwards also was sentenced to a year, with six months suspended, for his second drunken driving conviction.
Edwards entered Alford pleas to both charges, acknowledging prosecutors had enough evidence to gain a conviction.
Prosecutors say Edwards hit the bouncer outside a Sandpoint bar last October.
Officers stopped Edwards later and tests showed his blood-alcohol level was 0.18, more than twice the legal limit.
HOUSTON TX Feb 19 2012 – A man is accused of trying to steal an ATM machine loaded with tens of thousands of dollars in cash from a Texas Medical Center area building.
Anthony Hampton, 25, has been charged with automated teller machine theft. Court documents state on January 19 TMC Security observed a group of suspects dressed in black attempting to steal an ATM from a parking garage in the 1700 block of Colonnade. Security personnel and police responded to the scene and an officer says he observed four black men running in the garage near where the ATM had been abandoned.
Police say two of the suspects jumped a fence into an apartment complex, where a security guard found them hiding in shrubbery. Hampton was apprehended at that point by police, while the other suspect escaped.
According to court documents, the officer who took Hampton into custody described him as wearing black Adidas shoes with white stripes, and police say those shoes and the clothing he was wearing when booked into jail match that of a suspect seen in surveillance video.
The bank says on the night of the theft, the ATM was loaded with $60,000 in cash.
Bond has been set at $15,000.
Hampton has multiple prior convictions. He was convicted of two counts of burglary of a building and one count of criminal mischief in 2008, as well as burglary and drugs in 2010.
Athens County OH Feb 19 2012 The police chief of a southeastern Ohio village was arrested today in an Athens County drug investigation.
Kelsie K. Lanning Jr., the police chief of the rural village of Buchtel, near Nelsonville, was arrested at 3:30 p.m. by members of the Athens County Narcotics Enforcement Team.
Athens County Sheriff Patrick Kelly said in a news release that a person working with authorities sold Lanning, 33, prescription pills at the chief’s home at 432 Fairview Ave. in Nelsonville.
Lanning was not acting as a law-enforcement officer when he bought the pills, Kelly said.
Lanning and his girlfriend, Jessica Willison, 29, are charged with possession of an illegal narcotic. Willison was arrested at the home they share, deputies said.
Deputies seized the contents of the evidence room of the Buchtel Police Department as part of the investigation.
Kelly’s office told Buchtel Mayor John L. Sullivan that deputies will provide police coverage for the village of roughly 470 people as long as they are needed.
Sullivan said tonight that Lanning was the village’s only full-time police officer. He had been chief for about 18 months, Sullivan said.
“ He’d been with the department for a little over three years and never had no problems,” Sullivan said. “I still can’t believe it. I just can’t understand why he would do such a thing.”
Sullivan said he suspended Lanning without pay and appointed one of Buchtel’s two auxiliary officers, Jeremy Sharp, as interim police chief. Sharp has been with the village since 2001, Sullivan said.
“ It just came as a shock to all of us, even to Mr. Sharp,” Sullivan said.
The mayor wasn’t told of any improprieties with the department’s evidence room but said he understood why the sheriff had to seize it.
Lanning was taken to the Southeast Ohio Regional Jail pending a video appearance in court on Thursday morning. Additional charges will be presented to a grand jury, Kelly said.
Washington DC Feb 19 2012 The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on Thursday sought to bring debt collectors and credit bureaus under its purview, marking the first time the often controversial industries would be subject to federal supervision.
Under its proposed rule, the CFPB would oversee the nation’s largest debt collectors, the primary credit reporting agencies such as Experian, Equifax and TransUnion, and other lesser-known consumer reporting agencies. It is the first attempt by the watchdog agency to define which businesses in the vast swath of nontraditional financial institutions will be subject to the same examination process as banks.
“This oversight would help restore confidence that the federal government is standing beside the American consumer,” CFPB Director Richard Cordray said in a statement.
Cordray said a reason why they are targeting these firms is because they have expanded their reach into consumers’ lives during the recession. More people are now being pursued by debt collectors and have watched their credit scores slip.
Those scores have become crucial in the aftermath of the financial crisis. Some employers are even looking at credit scores as criteria for jobs. A car, a home, a college education are all financed by lenders that rely on the score to determine who gets credit and how much they pay for it.
For most consumers, those scores are based on records of loans they have taken out in the past and how well they have paid them off. This information is housed in the Big Three national credit bureaus — Experian, Equifax and TransUnion. Lenders use formulas developed by companies such as FICO and VantageScore to analyze the data and determine how likely each person is to repay.
Government regulators, financial firms and consumer advocates have launched extensive education campaigns in recent years to make sure that consumers understand what goes into their Big Three credit reports and how that affects the cost of a loan.
But little attention has been paid to the so-called “Fourth Bureau” firms that target the 30 million consumers outside the mainstream financial system. Often they are students, immigrants or low-income consumers who do not qualify for traditional loans or choose not to use them. Instead, they rely on a makeshift system of payday lenders, check cashers and prepaid cards — none of which show up in the Big Three. Without a paper trail of credit, these consumers are virtually shut out of the traditional banking system.
As a result, fourth bureau firms are increasingly using non-traditional and, at times, unreliable data, including auto warranties, cellphone bills and magazine subscriptions to come up with credit scores.
Yet federal regulations do not always require these companies to disclose when they share your financial history or with whom, and there is no way to opt out when they do. No one is even tracking the accuracy of these reports. That has left the most vulnerable consumers with little insight into the forces determining their financial futures.
The CFPB agency became the first federal agency to oversee so-called “nonbanks” after President Obama appointed Cordray as director late last year. But before it can use its power, the CFPB must set standards for which companies make the cut.
The proposed rule sets the bar for debt collection agencies at $10 million in annual receipts. The CFPB estimated that would encompass about 175 firms that account for about 63 percent of the debt collected from consumers each year.
For consumer reporting agencies, the CFPB proposed a standard of $7 million in annual receipts. That includes not only the three major credit bureaus but also roughly 30 smaller firms in the Fourth Bureau. The rule would give the CFPB authority over about 94 percent of the industry by receipts.
The power to oversee such firms and other nonbanks was a key component of the new agency’s design, and the CFPB has quickly flexed its muscle. It has already convened hearings on payday lending and plans to propose new rules for mortgage servicers.
The agency said it will continue to roll out guidelines employing a variety of criteria to define businesses that will be subject to supervision.
“This is going to be a very important way for us to interact with industry participants to know exactly what they’re doing,” Cordray said. He added that the power could be more efficient than using the “blunt instrument of lawsuits.”
Los Angeles CA Feb 19 2012 Alain Salas, a teacher’s assistant and coach at John C. Fremont High School, was arrested by the FBI on Monday.
Members of the SAFE Team (Sexual Assault Felony Enforcement) took the 40-year-old into custody on suspicion of violating section 288.3 of the California Penal Code, which prohibits contact with minor with the intent to commit a sexual offense.
He is accused of contacting a 15-year-old girl both online and in person, with alleged sexual contact at the school, according to the L.A. Times.
Superintendent John Deasy has said in interviews with multiple media outlets that they first found out about the investigation when the FBI notified the LAUSD on Monday.
Salas has worked at Freemont since 2006 as a teacher’s assistant for special education students, and as a coach for the girls’ softball and volleyball teams.
His arrest comes just days after nearby Miramonte Elementary experienced a second arrest of one of their teachers, which prompted the school to temporarily replace its entire staff.
Held without bail in downtown LA, Salas is expected to appear in court today to face formal charges from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
JACKSON, Miss. Feb 19 2012 (AP) – A Mississippi town fired its police chief, two officers and two town officials after a video surfaced purportedly showing them encouraging a mentally disabled man to eat a mouthful of cinnamon as part of a prank.
An attorney for the man, Denareus “Ted” Martin, 18, said a video was taken at City Hall by one of the officials in the town of Tutwiler, and posted on YouTube, though it has since been taken down. A separate video, which was also posted and removed, showed a police officer boxing with Martin, attorney Ellis Pittman said.
In the cinnamon video, a woman uses a piece of paper to pour a substance into Martin’s mouth while a group of people can be heard laughing in the background. Martin holds the cinnamon in his mouth for a few seconds before coughing and spitting it out. He runs to a water fountain and then to a restroom, where he appears on the verge of vomiting.
Pittman said his client was choking, but the officials “were all laughing, grinning and having a grand time.”
Former Tutwiler Police Chief Terry Tyler told The Associated Press on Thursday that he and the others were fired Tuesday during a specially called meeting of the Tutwiler Board of Aldermen.
“It’s a bunch of lies and false allegations,” Tyler said. “I don’t have anything to hide. I don’t have anything to be ashamed of.”
Tyler said he’s talking with an attorney and had no further comment.
Tallahatchie County Sheriff William Brewer said he heard about the firings Tuesday night and called the district attorney’s office and the FBI. He said a joint investigation is under way.
The “Cinnamon Challenge” is a prank in which people try to swallow cinnamon without water, which dries the mouth and usually causes them to cough and spit a plume of the spice. There are thousands of videos on the internet that show people trying it.
WABG-TV first reported the firings, aired the video and showed it on its website.
The video was taken while Martin was assigned to Tutwiler City Hall to work off fines from a minor criminal charge, though he didn’t know specifically what the offense was, Pittman said.
Former police officers Jimmy Johnson and Bobby Banks Jr., as well as court clerk LaToya Ellis and town clerk Angelia Chandler also were fired, the ex-police chief said. Chandler was the one who poured the cinnamon into Martin’s mouth, Pittman said. Banks also worked as a sheriff’s deputy for Tallahatchie County. The sheriff said he’s on suspension while the matter is investigated.
The AP tried unsuccessfully to reach them for comment. Several other Tutwiler officials, including Mayor Genether Miller-Spurlock, did not respond to numerous messages Thursday.
Pittman said the other video that was posted on the internet shows Johnson, the former police captain, boxing with Martin behind a shed near City Hall. He said the other former officer, Banks, made the video and posted it online.
Pittman said he’s not sure how many videos were taken of Martin. He said it may have started because his client told officers “they ain’t about nothing.”
“They took him out back behind a shed and put some boxing gloves on him, saying, ‘If we ain’t nothing then come on.’” Pittman said. “They proceeded to beat him up.”
Tutwiler is small town of about 1,300 people in Tallahatchie County in the Mississippi Delta. The area is known mostly for farming and several prisons and jails that employ many of its residents.
Florence AL Feb 19 2012 Police said a long-time employee of Southeastern Extrusion is accused of stealing equipment from the plant.
Eddie Dewayne Vollrath, 51, 2355 Norwood Boulevard, Florence, is charged with first-degree theft of property.
Vollrath is accused of taking specialized tools used to cut metal. He has been employed at the company for 28 years, police said.
Southeastern Extrusion is located in the Florence-Lauderdale Industrial Park.
“He worked the night shift and he would take the cutters home with him,” Florence police detective Justin Wright said. “Then he or a family member, would sell the cutters for scrap metal.”
Wright said plant officials got an anonymous call about the thefts. Wright said plant officials contacted police and investigation began about a week ago.
Wright said Vollrath cooperated with the investigation and turned himself in Thursdaying. He was released from the Lauderdale County Detention Center on bail of $5,000.
Greece NY Feb 19 2012 A Home Depot security employee was injured while trying to stop a shoplifter at a Greece store Tuesday afternoon.
Greece Police Lt. Jason Helfer said officers were called to the Home Depot, 1250 W. Ridge Road, about 4:30 p.m after an employee suffered a minor injury while attempting to stop someone from leaving the store with stolen thermostats.
Sgt. Casey Voelkl said the employee confronted the suspect in the parking lot. The suspect struck the employee as he drove away. Voelkl said the collision was minor.
The employee suffered a bruised leg and was taken to an area hospital to be evaluated, Voelkl said.
Officers are investigating the incident.
Paramus NJ Feb 19 2012 An accused thief and getaway driver who swiped nearly $20,000 worth of Gucci and Prada purses from the Garden State Plaza were caught in the act at the Short Hills Mall and arrested, Paramus police said today.
The crime spree began on Jan. 6, when 34-year-old Christopher Apolito of West Paterson snatched five purses worth more than $18,000, ran from the Gucci store at the Paramus mall and hopped into a waiting car driven by Johnathan Monet, 24, of Paterson, Police Capt. Kenneth R. Ehrenberg said.
Alert store employees gave police descriptions of Apolito and the vehicle, Ehrenberg said.
The pair return to the mall on Jan. 25, this time with Apolito going into Neiman Marcus, snatching a $1,600 Prada handbag and again fleeing in the waiting car.
Paramus Detective Sgt. Robert Olive and Detective Joseph McNair identified the pair and issued a statewide alert.
Last Thursday, Millburn police arrested both men committing what they said was a similar theft.
Both are being held in the Essex County Jail, Apolito on $20,000 bail and Monet on $5,000, pending resolution of the charges there. They will then be turned over to authorities from Paramus.
Olympia WA Feb 19 2012 An Olympia man and two others are charged with stealing more than $15,000 in gold from his former employer – a business that makes gold crowns and other products for dentists.
Michael Eugene Blaksley, 30, who worked for Pacific Dental Arts Lab on Ensign Road in Olympia, was fired in September after he was arrested on suspicion of identity theft in Lacey.
Blaksley and an accomplice allegedly used credit cards stolen in August from a home on 14th Avenue in Lacey to make fraudulent purchases at several businesses, including Walmart on Galaxy Drive. Walmart parking lot surveillance cameras revealed they were driving a vehicle belonging to Pacific Arts Dental Lab, according to court papers.
After Blaksley’s arrest, the owners of Pacific Dental Arts Lab, Gregory and Angela Wallace, “had been noticing dental fabrication gold was becoming unaccounted for from their business” beginning in December 2010, court papers state.
Gregory Wallace said Monday that the skyrocketing price of gold might have made the fabrication gold they use to make crowns an attractive target for theft.
“It is absolutely valuable,” Wallace said.
A Yelm jeweler and pawnshop owner said Tuesday that 10 years ago, gold was priced at about $300 an ounce. “It’s $1,700” an ounce now, said Todd Porter, owner of Yelm Jewelry & Loan.
Gold that is used in dental crowns is typically 16 carats, or roughly 60 percent pure gold, according to Porter.
“Blaksley has entered Thurston County Drug Court as an alternative to pleading guilty to his identity-theft charges, his attorney, James Dixon, said Tuesday.
After Lacey detectives learned the vehicle allegedly used by Blaksley was belonged to Pacific Dental Arts Lab, they went to the business . The owner told detectives he had allowed Blaksley to borrow the vehicle around the same time the theft was committed.
According to court papers:
After Blaksley’s arrest in the Lacey case, Olympia police began an investigation of the missing gold. Olympia detective George Samuelson learned that Blaksley and two other suspects had been pawning dental gold in Thurston and Pierce counties.
Gregory Wallace also told Samuelson that “he often allowed Blaksley to work alone at night and on the weekends to make additional money.”
Wallace said Monday that he treats his staff of 12 like family members, and he had no idea that anyone would ever steal from him.
“We go on the honor system here,” he said.
Samuelson learned that “Blaksley pawned dental gold four times at the Gold Rush at the Tacoma Mall, two times at the Westfield Capital (Olympia) mall, and four times at the Pawn Exchange (in Olympia).”
Blaksley provided a videotaped statement to police and admitted to stealing the gold and pawning it so he could buy heroin. He also admitted that he used two accomplices to help him, his former girlfriend, Tina Smith, 28, and Dennis Huber, 29, “because the pawnshops and gold buyers put a limit on the number of times they would allow him to sell this dental gold.”
Wallace said Monday that using gold to make crowns is becoming less common, and that most dentists now use zirconia, a much less expensive material. Gold, however, is still the strongest material that can be used in dental crowns, he said.
Wallace said his business, which was founded in Olympia more than 20 years ago, is recovering from the theft, and insurance covered part of his losses. He added that he is considering opening another location in Thurston County. “Business is better than ever,” he said.
“The bottom line is, I just have to forgive him and move on,” Wallace said of Blaksley, adding, “He hurt everybody in here.”
Blaksley is charged with first-degree theft and first-degree trafficking in stolen property. Smith is charged with one count of first-degree trafficking in stolen property. Huber is charged with first-degree trafficking in stolen property and one count of third-degree theft.
All three are scheduled to be arraigned at 10 a.m. Monday in Thurston County Superior Court.
Dixon said Tuesday that Blaksley has cooperated fully with the Olympia Police Department’s investigation. He said Blaksley hopes he can continue participating in drug court as an alternative to having to plead guilty to his new criminal charges for the thefts.
“I know he wants to make apologies to the people that he has harmed, but he can’t because of no-contact orders,” Dixon said.