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Police Officer Arrest Woman for Videotaping Kill the Bastads This Isn't America

Know your rights when talking to a police officer: http://policecrimes.com/police.html There's no law that requires you to talk to a police officer at anytim...
Rob Duke's insight:

What do you think?  How do we balance an officer's need to conduct an investigation without interference; or to have a safe environment without someone video taping in an unsafe way (behind the officer, in a cross fire if a suspect is involved, etc.) with the publics right to record abusive behavior?

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Robert Tompkins's comment, March 3, 2013 11:31 PM
I fell that the any person should be able to tape the officer at any time as long as they are not physically obstructing the officer. They are a public servant and need to realize that their job is conducted in the publlc. I feel that this particular officer should be suspended for a time to show that his actions were unneccesary and unwarrented. He should not have been wasting his time with this issue because the camera posed no threat to him at all.
Rob Duke's comment, March 3, 2013 11:57 PM
It's not clear from the video what the woman is doing. If the officer gave a lawful order to leave the premises and she has refused to do so, he may be warranted in telling her to put down the camera before he starts to make an arrest. The last thing I'd want is to be accused of breaking a $1000 camera (even the cheapest camera becomes a $1000 camera when people make claims against your agency).
Willow Weir's comment, March 7, 2013 5:15 PM
I agree that in general video taping should not be fought. I recognize that while on a job you will not be performing at 100% all the time but you certainly shouldn't be afraid to be monitored. I am a "better birth" advocate in my area and because of all the mistakes that ob/gyns make and have been recorded the local hospital no longer allows videos or pictures of woman while in labor until 1 minute after the baby is born. They do not want to risk being sued for malpractice. It is quite unfair.
Police Problems and Policy
Examining the possibilities of abuse of power without the constraint of New Public Administration.
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Police Officers With Troubled Pasts Are Hired for Schools

Police officers forced out of law enforcement agencies have been able to find jobs in Georgia's public schools, even after being accused at their old jobs of using a stun gun on a handcuffed woman, beating people, lying and other offenses, state records show.

Statewide, school system police departments employ officers who have been terminated or resigned under the cloud of an investigation at twice the rate of local police departments in Georgia, an investigation by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and WSB-TV revealed.

About 12 percent of the 656 officers working in the state's 31 school police departments have been forced out of a previous job, versus about 6 percent of the officers who work in local police agencies, statistics show.
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WATCH: Hilarious Video Of Handcuffed Suspect Running From Cops, Catches A Ride On The Lightning

WATCH: Hilarious Video Of Handcuffed Suspect Running From Cops, Catches A Ride On The Lightning | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it

 Surfside, Florida - Surveillance video shows the moment that a handcuffed suspect got tased while running from the officer.  The suspect had just been arrested for suspicion of stealing a bike when he attempted to escape.

Rob Duke's insight:
Sometimes a bad guy needs a little "Edison Medicine".  While I wouldn't call it "hilarious", this video demonstrates how completely your nervous system shuts down.  Serious injuries can result.
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Suspect remains on the run after shooting 2 police officers

Suspect remains on the run after shooting 2 police officers | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Police are searching for a suspect along Godby Road.
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Phillip Hill's curator insight, Today, 4:47 AM
I hope that the community comes together in efforts to catch the individual responsible for this tragedy. I commend the Fairbanks Police Department on all of their efforts to provide safety and security to the community. I believe that the suspect will be apprehended shortly because of the nature of the community within the Fairbanks which is a small community. Even if the individual were to leave Fairbanks on the highway or by plain, this individual will be caught and persecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
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Fired Pittsburgh police sergeant convicted in civil rights trial over violent Heinz Field arrest

Fired Pittsburgh police sergeant convicted in civil rights trial over violent Heinz Field arrest | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
A federal jury delivered a split verdict Friday in the civil rights trial of a former Pittsburgh police sergeant charged with wrongly beating a drunken man outside Heinz Field and then lying about it in a report.
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There is no such thing as a free body camera | Police Foundation

Data storage is the police body camera equivalent of the razor or the ink, and vendors obscure their markup on this storage by bundling it with other costs, including hardware, software, replacement costs and even technical support. The best example is the single price per month per camera, all-inclusive.

Another tactic is to give cameras away for free for an initial period, knowing that downstream, profits will come from the storage required for their footage as agencies continue to use them and enter into contracts.

The striking thing to consider is that no police body camera company owns or operates its own data center where video footage is stored. All of them—every single one—buys cloud storage from businesses like Amazon Web Services or Microsoft Azure, both of which offer CJIS-compliant cloud solutions, and then resell the storage to police departments at an extraordinarily profitable markup. Glenn Mattson, an equity analyst for Ladenburg Thalmann, said that the leading body police camera maker’s gross profit margins on video storage were more than three times its gross margins for hardware.

Imagine if razor companies didn’t make razor blades, but instead bought them from a handful of wholesale manufacturers, put a special receptacle on them that only worked with their brand of handles, and then sold those blades at a markup of a few hundred percent. The docking stations and software interface are that special handle for bodycams, and that is the profit margin the industry makes on Amazon’s storage.

American police departments have a tool at their disposal that, if used as our standard, will ensure fair competition and save taxpayers millions of dollars. The industry’s intended model only works if bidders are allowed, by the terms of a Request for Proposals (“RFP”), to bundle their charges and services in a way that doesn’t require that they specifically compete with one another over storage charges. At present, vendors prefer RFPs that allow them to bury storage markups and all of their other profit margins in a bundle of services that hide them from review and comparison. Regardless, our body camera vendors are paying companies such as Amazon for the actual number of gigabytes they are storing, at about 3 cents per gigabyte, so police departments ought to pay according to the same model. That we pay a flat rate bundled into the overall monthly price for a phone turns over the savings on any unused storage to our vendors.

This gap between fully-competitive pricing and the prevailing pricing model has only happened because we have allowed it to.

We lay out the terms of our RFPs; it is our prerogative to write them however we want as leaders engaged in government procurement and as representatives of our taxpayers. No body camera company can set those terms for us. If one of them balks at submitting an RFP because it interferes with their profit model, the body camera industry is mature enough to ensure that competitors will submit bids in compliance with the terms of the RFP and offer prices that are competitive and easy to evaluate and compare.

This is my advice: When police departments procure body cameras, we should always solicit multiple bids via RFP. More important, we need to specify in the terms of the RFP that the costs be broken down to indicate the individual prices for:

Each camera, given its capabilities and specifications
Docking stations and other accessories
Each end user software license
Insurance or replacement
Technical support
Storage, per gigabyte, for the agency, across all cameras
Any analytics software, i.e. computer-assisted redaction
By disambiguating storage costs and other items out of a bundled price, police departments will ensure a level of competition across bidders that will favor them and their taxpayers.

This is nothing more than free-market capitalism, where an industry reaches its peak level of efficiency through widespread transparency in pricing. It will make it impossible to disguise the markup on storage, for example, because the price offered in the RFP will be easy to compare to the ever-decreasing market rate for bulk electronic storage, which is a price that is well-known and completely transparent in the tech industry.

The final evolution of the body camera industry will come when there is no markup on storage costs and the devices are always given to the police for free.

I predict this is the inevitable course of things, and we will be there in about a decade.

The devices are just cameras and storage is literally just electrons in an array. The industry’s profit will be based on what it costs to move footage from a camera to a cloud and then review it when needed, and, more important, on how good its overall platform is.
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Police are trying — and training — to do the right thing | Commentary | Dallas News

Police are trying — and training — to do the right thing | Commentary | Dallas News | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
I've had some thoughtful conversations in recent weeks with law enforcement types about the long-running tension between police and minority communities across the nation.
Much of what they had to say revolves around a central, if well-worn, argument: Most cops are good and, given a choice, would prefer to never have to draw their weapon, much less shoot anyone.
Yet, when a few of them make egregious mistakes, such as the Balch Springs police officer who shot into a car full of teenagers last month and killed 15-year-old Jordan Edwards, they all pay a steep price. The public backlash is fast and furious.
"There are dozens or hundreds of documented bad outcomes where the preferred thing would've been — had the officer done this or that — we'd have a better outcome," said Dallas Deputy police Chief Jeffrey Cotner, the soon-to-be retired commander of the department's training division. "And when we fail, there's possibly a loss of life."
Since Ferguson, those "failures" have been front-and-center of an intense national debate about police training and accountability — two issues I discussed at length with Cotner, who is white, and Norman, Okla., police Chief Keith Humphrey, who is black.
"We have about 20,000 law enforcement agencies and a million officers [nationwide] and 99 percent are amazing," said Humphrey. "You have less than 1 percent causing 99 percent of the problems, and we have to deal with the fallout."
Rob Duke's insight:
Yeah, ok, in many ways, he's right.  But that's just the micro view.  Most officers are doing a good job within the institutions and the culture of policing, but we are way overdue for a re-invention of what it means to be the police in not only America, but in a republic.
Waddington argues that the London Metro Police come about in the 1820's because of the 1st Industrial Revolution and changing economics.  Workers became part of the "we" that was no longer acceptable to treat as a "them".  The same thing happened from the 1950's through the 1990's as a result of the Civil Rights Movement (and we might argue: the 2nd Industrial Revolution--where we created a healthy Middle Class) through the Rodney King incident--I'm talking about hard-working people of color--not those involved in the underground economy, who remained part of the "them" that the police were encouraged to target.  However, the 3rd Industrial Revolution (technology) has completely changed the way we communicate, the level of surveillance and recording of public officials, and also the way we view many activities of the Underground Economy.  Just consider these changes that have occurred in your lifetime...these have been dramatic.  Let me put this in perspective: when I was born (1966), we had just begun having regular air service in Boeing 707 or DC-8's; my dad worked for one company most of his adult life and programmed computers that had less memory than the phone you carry in your pocket; the only communication devices we had were: a. a rotary dial phone; b. telegraph; and, c. police radios; and, our pharmaceuticals were limited to: 1. Vaccines; 2. Anti-biotics; 3. Birth Control; 4. analgesics; and, 5. a few psychotropic drugs (lithium, etc.) available---all other drugs weren't just bad, but evil.
The changes to society as a result of the 2nd & 3rd Industrial Revolution have been dramatic, but the police remain largely the same.  Not only that, but we're not talking about making a major change.  Doesn't that seem odd?
In closing, consider in 1915 most cops walked around in parties of two with billy clubs and a .38 revolver.  Their beats were several blocks square and they didn't work strict shifts or respond to calls.  They were caretakers of their own little "beat" and they were connected, but too connected and participated fully in politics and corruption.  August Vollmer changed all that in his many police chief roles (Chicago, Los Angeles, etc., but always returning to Berkeley).  Vollmer (and his disciples most notable O.W. Wilson), put us in patrol cars with huge beats, responding to radio calls, with weapons to match the gangsters of prohibition (the G-men of Elliot Ness had a little to do with this part); and, had us using science and management to "professionalize" policing (yes, J. Edgar Hoover's FBI had a good bit to do with this part).  My point is that we've changed ourselves dramatically:
1. London Police;
2. Professional Model;
3. Community Policing.
But, now we seem to be ignoring the signals that something big has changed in society to which we MUST respond....
I suspect that it may be up to your generation to figure out what that response should be....
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Oakland Proposes $1 Million for Teen in Police Sex Scandal

The city of Oakland, California, is proposing to pay nearly $1 million to the teen daughter of a police dispatcher who says she was sexually abused by officers.

The teen, now 19, said Oakland Police officers exploited and victimized her while she was working as an underage prostitute. Her allegations led to the abrupt resignation of former Police Chief Sean Whent last year and caused turmoil in several Bay Area police departments. The teen says she had sex with two dozen police officers, some of whom when she was younger than 18. Most of the officers worked in Oakland.

The Associated Press generally doesn't identify victims of sexual crimes.

In a settlement to be considered by the Oakland city council next week, the Oakland city attorney is recommending a payment of $989,000 to settle the woman's claims before she files a lawsuit.
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Trump Targets Cartels, Attacks on Police in Executive Orders

Trump Targets Cartels, Attacks on Police in Executive Orders | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
President Donald Trump discussed the directives at a swearing-in ceremony for Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
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Police: Spike in Seattle shootings driven by gang grudges

Police: Spike in Seattle shootings driven by gang grudges | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Rather than traditional gang battles, police are dealing with retaliatory shootings set off by personal disputes. They plan to counteract the violence by increasing patrols and targeting the most dangerous offenders.
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Danville bank robbery suspect didn’t stand out as police officer

Danville bank robbery suspect didn’t stand out as police officer | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
A Placentia police spokesman said Jennifer Rae McClary, suspected of robbing the bank while wearing a painted-on beard, did not survive her probationary period as an officer.
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There's a reason that she's an ex-officer....but we often release officers on probation without "cause" due to liability of proving another reason.
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'Star Wars': Why Darth Vader wasn't truly a villain

'Star Wars': Why Darth Vader wasn't truly a villain | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
And why the Jedi weren't as good as advertised.
Rob Duke's insight:
This article is a good mix-up to go along with one of Bittner's articles about the Police as a "tainted profession".  Bittner argues that we do bad things as well as good, thus we're tainted.  He puts us in the same category as dentists and doctors.  Whether we like to admit it or not, we sometimes make utilitarian decisions (often without full information) and that eats into our own Virtue Ethics.
Let me know your thoughts....I'm open to the idea that justice and policing may be on the verge of a new meaning or at least a new ethics....
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Video appears to show Texas officer striking teenage girl

Video appears to show Texas officer striking teenage girl | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
 The San Antonio Police Department is reviewing police body camera footage after a bystander posted vide
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Suspect in vehicle break-ins shot by Anchorage officer

The suspect wasn't stopped by a stun gun and was wielding a hatchet, police said.
Rob Duke's insight:
Remember the hatchet used to be called a tomahawk....
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Off-duty police officer catches serial robber while shopping for doughnuts

Off-duty police officer catches serial robber while shopping for doughnuts | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Lieutenant Mark Askerlund said an off-duty officer shopping for a party Saturday morning recognized serial robber suspect Zane James, 18, in a hoodie and called for backup.
Dan Morzelewski, Saturday’s off-duty officer, is the detective assigned to the case.
“He had the suspect’s face committed to memory, and he acted quickly,” Lt. Askerlund said.
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Jewkes among officers involved in fatal shooting; Welborn appointed acting chief

Jewkes among officers involved in fatal shooting; Welborn appointed acting chief | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
FAIRBANKS - Fairbanks Police Chief Eric Jewkes was involved in the police shooting that killed a man Thursday afternoon on a Mitchell Expressway on-ramp.
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SF police too quick to go for their guns, critics say

SF police too quick to go for their guns, critics say | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
If the statistics are revealing, they are difficult to assess, as there are no historic data to compare them to. While many police departments consider the pointing of a firearm to be a reportable use of force, few release the figures publicly.

Chuck Canterbury, president of the Fraternal Order of Police, a national organization, said officers aren’t drawing their weapons lightly, but tactically.

“We are trained from day one that if you clear your holster, it is perhaps the most serious thing you do,” he said. “From an officer’s perspective, being ready and being prepared is much better than being administered CPR.”

Scrutiny of gun-pointing by officers is beginning to generate debate in many cities, including New Orleans and Washington. In some places, including San Francisco, police unions have objected to the requirement that it be documented as a use of force.

The issue came to the fore in Oakland in 2011, when a court-appointed monitor said police were often too quick to draw their guns, especially when confronting black suspects. “Officers frequently presumed — often, with no basis — that whomever they were contacting was armed,” the monitor said.
Rob Duke's insight:
Only 7 times a day?  Having worked a metro, I'd say that 7 times a day pulling the gun is low...if you're doing your job and getting out of your car and checking out everything that is suspicious, then the gun should be out more.  It's too easy to ambush an officer and it takes too long to react, draw, and then react.  If you start requiring officers to justify every draw, then officers won't take that precaution, and officer assaults and murders of officers is going to go up.
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Police who were first on Manchester Arena bombing scene get counselling designed for soldiers in battle

Police who were first on Manchester Arena bombing scene get counselling designed for soldiers in battle | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Police officers who were first on the scene of Monday’s terror attack are now receiving counselling designed for soldiers who witnessed battlefield horrors.

Dozens of officers raced to the Manchester Arena following reports of the blast. Along with paramedics they were confronted with the devastating sight of children and adults with fatal or catastrophic injuries after suicide bomber Salman Abedi detonated a nail bomb in the foyer of indoor stadium.

Officers who were first to respond - and those who later joined them - also had to comfort children who had witnessed their parents suffering serious blast injuries.
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Phillip Hill's curator insight, Today, 4:51 AM
This is an article that I take heavy concern for. 30 years ago, there were as substantial amounts of racial tension throughout America. In today's society, there is a new threat which is terrorism. Racial propaganda has significantly decreased over the years but unfortunately terrorism has increased. I hope all of the law enforcement agencies come together in conjunction among efforts to decrease the terrorist acts happening in Europe. Although the threat level of terrorism has been increased to red, multiple law enforcement agencies must assure security and safety for their civilians. My condolences for the loss of life from this unfortunate catastrophic event.
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Black Lives Matter awarded 2017 Sydney peace prize

Black Lives Matter awarded 2017 Sydney peace prize | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
The selection is likely to be controversial with some who associate Black Lives Matter with images of week-long and occasionally violent protests at Ferguson, Missouri, following the fatal police shooting of 18-year-old Mike Brown in 2014.

But those images, and the protests themselves, which have been repeated across the United States, only tell part of the story, said co-founder Patrisse Cullors.

“We’re not just about hitting the streets or direct action … it’s a humanising project,” she told Guardian Australia. “We’re trying to re-imagine humanity and bring us to a place where we can decide how we want to be in relation to each other versus criminalising our neighbours or being punitive towards them.”
Rob Duke's insight:
What are your thoughts?
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Phillip Hill's curator insight, Today, 4:57 AM
As an individual of multiple diverse backgrounds of decent, I am uncertain if I fully support black lives matter. I do have a portion of African American descent within my family but the reason for my perception on my statement is the fact that other races are not recognized in this fashion. The native American Indians had endured endless amounts of torture and killings within our American history. The Mexican American war took enormous amounts of land from Mexico. Jewish people were exterminated catastrophically by Hitler. During World War II, Japanese people were racially profiled within America. My question is, why is there not an Asian lives matter, Mexican lives matter, Native American lives matter, Jewish lives matter, and any other race that has been subject and victims to unfortunate negative situations? This is my personal emphasis and perception.
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Texas Makes Threats Against Police a Hate Crime

Texas Makes Threats Against Police a Hate Crime | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
Threats and violence against Texas judges and police will be prosecuted as hate crimes under legislation passed this week, making good on the governor’s promise of “severe justice” for people who target law enforcement.
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Beyond ‘cops on the dots’: How Dayton police are using data to battle crime hot spots

Beyond ‘cops on the dots’: How Dayton police are using data to battle crime hot spots | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it

The Dayton Police Department plans to use a new investigative strategy that focuses on “micro areas” of violent crime to not only bring criminals to justice also to disrupt their networks and eliminate or clean up places where criminals hang out, meet, shop, live and make preparations to engage in illegal activity. 

Where police resources are deployed is based on crime rates and trends, but deeper analysis is needed to truly understand how to craft the most effective police response, said Dayton police Chief Richard Biehl. 

“The most frequent strategy or tactic in law enforcement is called ‘hot spot policing,’ or it’s called cops on the dots,” he said. “Where the data aggregates — the dots appear with greater density — that’s where you deploy police officers.”

But, Biehl said, police also need to engage those areas and interact with the community to achieve meaningful and sustained reductions in crime, he said. 

The Dayton Police Department is about to try a new strategy to cool off the tiny crime hot spots by taking away the places criminals hang out, live, gather and meet to support their illegal activities. 

Last month, Biehl discussed research that found that about 39 percent of shootings, 14 percent of robberies and 17 percent of firearms offenses in Dayton last year occurred in very small parts of the city, referred to as high-crime micro areas. 

Put together, those tiny hot spots represent less than 0.7 square miles of space. 

Taking a page out of Cincinnati’s playbook, the police department plans to try to reduce gun violence and criminal activity at some of the city’s worst hot spots high-crime “micro areas” through a data-driven, place-based investigative strategy.

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Rob Duke's curator insight, May 26, 12:09 PM
Here's a criminologist career that doesn't require one to work graveyard patrol: crime analyst....analyze crime, make policy recommendations, attend briefings and managerial meetings to report on crime trends, help develop budget and planning documents.
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Dirt bike rider critically injured in chase with Cleveland police spotlights ongoing Bike Life debate

Dirt bike rider critically injured in chase with Cleveland police spotlights ongoing Bike Life debate | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
A 20-year-old dirt bike rider suffered critical injuries Monday night after Cleveland police chased him through city streets, police say.

The incident comes less than two weeks after Mayor Frank Jackson and Cleveland police Chief Calvin Williams announced a multi-pronged approach to tackling the issue of riders illegally operating off-road vehicles on Cleveland's roads.

"The policy has been to not come out ... and chase a dirt bike with a car. Nobody is going to win in that situation. It just puts everybody's life at risk," Williams said during a May 16 press conference with Jackson.

Cleveland police policy prohibits officers from using their zone cars to chase dirt bike riders -- but it doesn't bar police from using police motorcycles to chase riders, Cleveland police spokeswoman Sgt. Jennifer Ciaccia said.

Ciaccia said the department's bikes are larger street-legal versions of a dirt bike the city originally bought for last year's Republican National Convention.
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Fairbanks police shoot, kill suspect following pursuit near Fairbanks

Alaska State Troopers say a man wanted on warrants tried to elude law enforcement near Fairbanks Thursday, and the pursuit ended in gunfire that killed the suspect.

At 3:14 p.m. Thursday, troopers in Fairbanks spotted a person they said had "known warrants" and tried to pull the vehicle over.

AST Lt. Brian Wassmann said during a press conference in Fairbanks streamed live on Facebook that troopers saw the man driving a white truck in the area of Easy Street and Old Richardson Highway.

Troopers tried to pull the man over but he did not stop, prompting a pursuit down the highway toward North Pole, Wassmann said. The chase continued on the highway to Badger Road, where the suspect turned around and started driving toward Fairbanks, he said.

"Witnesses reported to the troopers that the suspect fired a gun at pursuing troopers during the pursuit," Wassmann said. The lieutenant did not specify when the shots were fired.
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Man Shot Dead in Compton in Exchange of Gunfire With 2 Deputies, Who Were Injured: LASD

Man Shot Dead in Compton in Exchange of Gunfire With 2 Deputies, Who Were Injured: LASD | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it


A man was fatally shot after opening fire on two sheriff's deputies, who were left injured in the exchange of gunfire late Wednesday in Compton, authorities said.


A gunman was killed, and two deputies were injured, Wednesday evening in a deputy-involved shooting in Compton. (Credit: KTLA)
At around 11:40 p.m. deputies tried to pull over a white sedan in the 900 block of North Santa Fe Avenue.

The car didn't initially stop, and the deputies could see three people inside the vehicle, according to a news release from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

After one of the deputies opened the car's rear passenger door, an armed passenger fired at the deputy, who returned fire. The man then fired on the second deputy, who also returned fire.

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Outright Lies Grease Passage of Bill That Eliminates Mandatory Gun Enhancements

Regardless of how you feel about the legislation, we are disturbed, and every legislator should be disturbed, that a witness called to testify in support of Senate Bill 620 told multiple lies to the California Senate.  Kim McGill of the Youth Justice Coalition sat next to the bill author, Senator Steven Bradford, as she addressed the Public Safety Committee on April 25, 2017.  McGill claimed, "one case in particular, stands out" to exemplify the unfairness of mandatory gun enhancements and then detailed the "facts" of a robbery case involving Travis Manning.
 
Ms. McGill testified that Manning was a 19-year-old man who had never been arrested.  According to McGill, he entered a GameStop, asked for a $100 game while holding a BB gun, and then took the same game back to GameStop a month later, not understanding the consequences of his act.  McGill claimed the sentencing judge "stated under California law he could not make any adjustments due to Travis' cognitive disabilities or his lack of a past criminal record." PBS NewsHour, relying upon McGill and Senator Bradford's information, repeated these statements in a story where Manning was made the "poster child" for SB 620.
 
The actual facts show McGill lied to the Senate Committee.  On the day he robbed the GameStop, Manning was a 23-year-old convicted felon. His criminal history included possession of cocaine base for sale.  The jury found -- and it was affirmed on appeal -- that Manning pulled out and cocked a real gun while committing the robbery.  Manning did not request a "$100 game" as McGill testified but demanded and received a Wii console, games, accessories, as well as the $600-700 in the cash register. 
 
Ms. McGill also did not tell the truth about Manning's actions after the robbery.  He did not take the "same game" back to GameStop. Instead, on two separate occasions Manning sold portions of the stolen loot to another GameStop store. This was not a misunderstood youth.  Mr. Manning was a felon who after committing robbery then committed a burglary by entering a business to sell property he had stolen at gunpoint. The connection was finally made when the store clerks from two different locations independently identify Manning.
 
Finally, Ms. McGill was dishonest in her description of the judge's remarks which she embellished to support her key point--that inflexible sentencing laws led to Manning's sentence. Clearly the judge never claimed he could not adjust the sentence despite Manning's "lack of a past criminal record," since Manning did have a prior record at the time he committed the robbery. Mr. Manning was on active probation with a prior felony conviction (Case number MA029937) when he committed the robbery and that led to his being charged and convicted of being a felon with a firearm. (Case number TA095435)
 
Equally importantly, the sentence length proved McGill was dishonest when she purported to quote the judge.  This is the point that first caused us to take notice of her claims.  As Ms. McGill was weaving her tale about the judge's statement, anybody who understands sentencing laws (be they prosecutor, defense attorney, or legislator sitting on the Public Safety Committee) should have instantly recognized without even knowing the facts of the case that McGill's tale did not ring true.
 
The sentence length for the crimes charged reflected that the judge had selected the longer of possible terms for Manning's sentence.  California law allowed the sentencing judge to run Manning's convictions for two robberies and a burglary concurrently, resulting in a shorter prison sentence than the 18 years imposed.  Instead, the sentence length reflected consecutive sentences, emphatically disproving McGill's recitation that the sentencing judge stated California law precluded a reduced sentence length.
 
We believe that McGill's misstatements were deliberate and calculated.  According to her own words when she testified, she was involved in the Manning case before his trial and sentencing.  Ms. McGill stated to the committee that she helped Manning get a new lawyer pending trial, "packed the court," and coordinated the presentation of "several powerful testimonies" at sentencing.
 
It is shocking that Ms. McGill felt comfortable sitting next to Senator Bradford while calmly uttering false statements during public testimony to a Senate Committee.  Also alarming is that when the ADDA contacted PBS reporter Kamala Kelkar to request a correction of her inaccurate story, we were informed that Senator Bradford's office repeated McGill's false statements about Manning, including the absurd claim that he had no prior record.  Didn't the Senator or anybody on his staff wonder how Manning was convicted of being a felon in possession of a gun if he had never been convicted of a prior felony?  Why didn't the Senator or his staff verify any of the facts of the case they chose to use as the "poster child" for the need to overturn mandatory gun enhancements?  The information is, after all, public record.
 
Criminal justice reform advocates who wish to take the system to task should remember that in criminal trials, the standard of proof is beyond a reasonable doubt, and that everything is documented in the public record.  If you misrepresent the facts that are in the public record, we will know. This sordid episode points out the need for legislators and the media to carefully vet the stories and ideas being peddled in furtherance of "criminal justice reform."
Rob Duke's insight:
Is this merely typical politics or is this Muir's dangerous abuse of the Power of the Word (persuasion)?
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DeKalb sheriff suspends himself after indecency arrest

DeKalb sheriff suspends himself after indecency arrest | Police Problems and Policy | Scoop.it
DeKalb Sheriff Jeff Mann says he's not guilty of exposing himself and running from police, but he suspended himself for a week under his code of conduct.
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