The Fairfax County Police

The Fairfax County Police
Sweeping it under the carpet for over fifty years

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Sex crimes by your local police

Memphis police officer charged with solicitation of a minor
Yolanda Jones
Memphis police officer Derrick Abdul-Wakil is due in court Monday after he was accused of masturbating in front a 14-year-old girl that he gave a ride to in his police car.

Police chief charged with menacing, covering up assault
Craig Shoup,
PUT-IN-BAY – The village police chief was charged Friday with threatening one of his officers with a gun in 2012 and covering up allegations that a Put-in-Bay police cadet was raped in 2003.
Put-in-Bay Police Chief Robert "Ric" Lampela, 53, also was charged with lying to Ottawa County Sheriff's Office officials while they were investigating those allegations.
Lampela faces one count of aggravated menacing, one count of dereliction of duty and two counts of falsification. If convicted, he could face a maximum penalty of one year and nine months in jail.
A summons was issued for Lampela to attend a court hearing March 25 in Ottawa County Municipal Court.
Lampela and Mayor Margaret Scarpelli were not available for comment. It is not clear whether Lampela is currently running the department.
The police department deferred comment on Friday to the village's legal counsel, George C. Wilber of Port Clinton. Wilber was not available.
Village Councilman Jeff Koehler said he was unaware of the charges but said despite being misdemeanors, they are serious for a police chief.
"Anything in this capacity of alleged wrongdoing usually results in a suspension," Koehler said.
Put-in-Bay Village Council meets at 9 a.m. March 9, and Lampela's status could be discussed then.
The sheriff's office began investigating Put-in-Bay police in August after it received multiple complaints about officers' conduct. Sheriff Steve Levorchick asked the Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation, an arm of the Ohio Attorney General's Office, to assist during the process.
No other officers were charged, and unless authorities receive new evidence, no more charges will be filed, said Dan Tierney, Ohio attorney general's spokesman.
Put-in-Bay police officers' actions fell far short of what was expected, wrote Margaret Tamaro, special prosecutor for the Ohio Attorney General's Office in her report on the case. Criminal charges were not levied because nothing improper occurred; citing unprofessional conduct is not a crime, she wrote.
There was a flagrant violation of local policy because locals made complaints to Scarpelli instead of the police because they felt the police would not treat them fairly.
"There appeared to be a pattern of inconsistency in the enforcement of the laws at Put-in-Bay, and disparate treatment of individuals," Tomaro wrote.
She recommended proper leadership and training to prevent further unprofessional conduct from occurring.
The department, located on South Bass Island, utilizes a large number of young first-time officers during the spring and summer months to account for a large increase in the summer tourism population.
The menacing charge against Lampela resulted after allegations were made that Lampela brandished a firearm at Put-in-Bay Police Officer Jeff Herald while the two discussed the Bill of Rights. A nearby officer unstrapped his duty holster, ready to draw his gun due to concern for Herald's safety, according to Tomaro's report.
Lampela was charged with dereliction of duty because authorities allege he refused to allow a police report to be filed in 2003 after two Put-in-Bay officers were accused of sexually assaulting a police cadet at an employee dorm on South Bass Island. Authorities allege Lampela ignored the assault allegations to prevent negative publicity for the police department.
The falsification charges resulted after he told investigators that two people — whose initials are listed in the report — never officially reported the sexual assault to him.
Put-in-Bay Resort owner Mark Mathys, who has publicly stated he feels his businesses and employees have been unfairly targeted by Put-in-Bay police, said he was relieved the investigation was over and was happy the sheriff treated it with respect.
Three of Mathys' employees were arrested in September 2013 in what he called a "wholly unjustified" violation of civil rights during an incident at the resort. The case against one employee was dropped, and the other two were acquitted at trial.
"I'm glad for the people up there. Now the healing can begin," Mathys said. "I'm very thankful for the sheriff. He did a great job."
Charges against Put-in-Bay Police Chief Ric Lampela
• One count of aggravated menacing: He is charged with threatening one of his officers with a gun in 2012.
• One county of dereliction of duty: He is charged with not allowing a police report to be filed regarding allegations that two Put-in-Bay police officers raped a police cadet in 2003.
• Two counts of falsification: He is charged with lying to the Ottawa County Sheriff's Office when he said that two people did not officially report the sexual assault.

More accusations against Palm Beach Shores police officer
By Ari Hait
Officer has been on paid leave since March 2014
RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. —More details are emerging about a rape accusation made against a Palm Beach Shores police officer.
Charles Hoeffer has been on administrative leave with pay since March of 2014. That's when a blind woman in Riviera Beach accused the officer of raping her twice in two months.
WPBF 25 News has obtained a copy of the police report regarding those accusations.
The report said the victim knew Hoeffer and allowed him to come inside her apartment but tried to fight off his sexual advances.
"The victim stated Hoeffer stood over her and pried her legs apart with his knees," the report said. "During the incident, the victim was telling Hoeffer, stop, no, no, and tried to push him away."
The victim told police Hoeffer raped her again a month later.
According to the report, the victim then refused to speak further to investigators, saying talking about the incident was too stressful and gave her seizures.
No charges have been filed.
Hoeffer has been the subject of other investigations, as well.
In 2010, a woman accused him of making crude comments to her while responding to her complaint of domestic abuse. The woman said Hoeffer told her he wanted to see her in a thong.
"Sitting there having him tell me that, I was like, 'Are you kidding me?'" the woman told investigators.
In 2012, a Palm Beach Shores dispatcher accused Hoeffer of sexual harassment.
In 2013, a Palm Beach Shores woman, Janice Martinetti, accused Hoeffer of sexually assaulting her.
"He was just rubbing my leg and pulling my dress up and asking to look at my panties and I just kept telling him to stop it," Martinetti told WPBF 25 News.
All three of these cases were investigated and ruled unsubstantiated.
Two other cases against Hoeffer remain open and are being investigated by the Palm Beach Shores police department.
Palm Beach Shores police said they cannot comment about the two open cases and cannot comment on how long those cases will take to investigate.

Arbitrator says Cleveland police officer who sexted crime victims, visited women on duty, should keep job
By Ryllie Danylko, Northeast Ohio Media Group 
CLEVELAND, Ohio -- City officials fired police officer Vincent Lucarelli after the 12-year veteran admitted to "sexting" with crime victims and visiting women while on duty. But an arbitrator ordered the city to rehire him.
Mayor Frank Jackson on Friday said the arbitration process involved in punishing officers has been an obstacle in attempts to reform the department.
An arbitrator let Lucarelli keep his job after the officers admitted that he kissed and touched women inside a police car and tried to have relationships with a total of seven women -- six of whom were crime victims -- over five months in 2012.
The city appealed the arbitrator's ruling, according to records, and that case is still pending.
The incidents were brought to light during a criminal investigation into Brenda Bickerstaff, a private investigator who police accused of intimidating a witness. Eight thousand of that witness's text messages were subpoenaed -- including sexts exchanged between her and Lucarelli. From there, an internal affairs investigation linked six other women to Lucarelli.
The exchanges all took place between January and May 2012. Some of the alleged relationships went no further than "harmless flirting," while others turned sexual.
Lucarelli began texting one woman about a burglary she reported. These messages progressed into sexting. Lucarelli told her that he wanted to come to her house and have sex with her.
The officer started a sexual relationship with another woman three years after Cleveland police investigated a crime committed against her. Lucarelli admitted he visited the woman while on the clock and gave her money to support her children.
Investigators said all of the relationships were consensual, though one woman admitted she was intimidated by Lucarelli's advances.
The city cited the seriousness of Lucarelli's violations as justification for firing him. It also emphasized that this wasn't a one-time gaffe, but a clear pattern of behavior.
The city propped up its decision with additional rules Lucarelli broke, including when he took a side security job without the department's approval; that he failed to appear at a disciplinary hearing; and that he used a city vehicle to pick up his neighbor from her job in Beachwood.
The Cleveland Police Patrolmen's Association stood behind Lucarelli and argued that termination was too harsh, given that other officers who committed more serious violations were allowed to keep their jobs. The union also contended that none of Lucarelli's actions were illegal, nor did they compromise any criminal investigations.
Lucarelli blamed his misconduct on problems in his marriage, which caused him to spiral out of control. He said his "abandonment or loyalty issues" clouded his professional judgment.
Arbitrator Gary W. Spring in his decision reprimanded Lucarelli for his compulsive texting and negligence in doing his job. But he ultimately ruled that the officer deserved a "second and last chance."
Lucarelli was put on unpaid suspension until further notice. The arbitrator recommended a year of counseling for his marriage woes, his addiction to sexting and his "overzealous pursuit of sexual romance."
After the arbitrator's ruling in January 2013, Bickerstaff -- the private investigator whose criminal charges first linked Lucarelli to to these incidents -- sued the city, the police department and Lucarelli. That case is pending in federal court.
Bickerstaff's lawsuit says that not only did Lucarelli sext crime victims, but he also sent nude photos of at least two women to other police officers. She also accuses other officers of helping Lucarelli cover up an incident when he assaulted someone he was arresting.
In one of the text exchanges, Lucarelli said that he stole a pair of his girlfriend's underwear and placed them in the desk drawer of a fellow officer.
"I had her pick lace panties in (your) drawer, but you got sick so I took them back. That was gonna be funny," Lucarelli wrote.
"LOL, real funny..." the officer wrote in response.
A complaint accuses the city of failing to adequately investigate Lucarelli's misconduct, which according to her lawsuit is more egregious than what was outlined in the arbitration case.

Cop rapes: Did Palm Beach Shores and Riviera Beach fail to police their own?
Trust, once lost, is a hard thing to regain. Boynton Beach Police Chief Jeffrey Katz said as much in October 2014 while when announcing that one of his officers, Stephen Maiorino, had been arrested and charged with raping at gunpoint a stranded young woman whom he was supposed to have driven to the police department, after her friend was arrested on charges of driving under the influence.
Evidence corroborated the young woman’s account, though Maiorino’s attorney maintains the officer is not guilty. Katz responded exactly as a police chief should. He called a press conference to announce the officer’s arrest. He said he was “disturbed and disgusted.” He started working immediately to regain the community’s trust.
“Quite frankly, we are angry that any individual would squander the goodwill we have worked so hard to build within our community,” Katz said.
Maiorino has been in jail for months. That’s the kind of response the public expects when an official in a position of trust — there’s that word again — is accused of committing a serious crime.
Compare that to the treatment of Charles Hoeffer, who has continued wearing a badge year after year — in Palm Beach Shores, in Riviera Beach, in Delray Beach — even as allegations of violence against women emerged early in his career.
The Post’s Lawrence Mower discovered that Hoeffer has been accused of raping, assaulting or sexually harassing 11 women since 1983, including, most recently, a blind woman whom he is accused of raping in her home twice. He’s been on paid leave from his job at the town of Palm Beach Shores for nearly a year while the allegation is investigated. None of the allegations has have resulted in a criminal charge or a finding of guilt, as the victim is traumatized and won’t speak about the rape any longer.
His personnel files paint a disturbing portrait of shoddy investigations and shoddy hiring in Delray Beach, Riviera Beach and especially Palm Beach Shores. Time after time, Hoeffer beat allegations of rape and assault against an officer, and even workplace sexual harassment, yet and kept his pay and pension, public records showed.
Irresponsible investigative work helped. In 2010, a citizen went to Palm Beach Shores police to file a complaint about Hoeffer, who had been sent to provide protection as she sought help leaving a violent boyfriend, and instead made sexual overtures. He spotted the woman’s thong underwear in a plastic bag, according to her complaint, and allegedly said “I would really love to see you in those thongs. I bet you look really good in them. Maybe we can make that happen, huh?” The investigator who took her report never bothered to interview Hoeffer, according to the file. When the victim didn’t return phone calls, the case was closed with no action, Mower reported.
Similarly, when the blind woman reported her rape to Riviera Beach police, it took the agency 48 days to follow up.
It wasn’t the first time Riviera Beach had investigated Hoeffer for a rape allegation. A woman accused him of taking her to a hotel while on duty and raping her in 1996. Prosecutors at the time declined to charge him.
How does someone in such a sensitive position of trust get a pass over and over, and worse, continue being paid by taxpayers? Clearly, Palm Beach Shores police lack appropriate protocols for handling citizen complaints. What will it take for Palm Beach Shores and Riviera Beach police to earn back the public’s trust?

Case of San Jose Police Officer Accused Of Raping Undocumented Immigrant Goes To Court
Matt Bigler
SAN JOSE (KCBS)— The case of a San Jose police officer accused of raping an undocumented immigrant while on duty was in Santa Clara County Superior Court on Monday, although the accused officer did not appear. Prosecutors say they are ready to take the case to the next level.
Lead prosecutor Carlos Vega said they are ready for a preliminary hearing of the case against San Jose Police Officer Geoffrey Graves but it was postponed a week until March 9th. So the defense could review witness testimony.
“The witnesses have been notified. The evidence has been organized and ready to go, which means that we’re ready to proceed at this stage in the process.” Vega said.
The alleged assault happened in September of 2013. Following a call for domestic violence, Graves took the victim to a hotel at her request, and then she claims he sexually assaulted her.
“If these allegations are proven to be true, the officer will be held accountable for his actions,”
San Jose Police Sgt. Heather Randol.
Graves has pleaded not guilty, is out on $100,000 bail and remains on paid administrative leave from the department. He faces eight years in prison.
The investigation by San Jose Police has been monitored by the city’s Independent Police Auditor LaDoris Cordell.
In a separate matter; the officer is also accused of assaulting his ex-girlfriend in 2012 and 2013.
Former Alexandria officer charged with carnal knowledge
By Melissa Gregory
A former Alexandria police officer was booked into jail Thursday and later was released after being arrested on a carnal knowledge of a juvenile charge, according to a release.
Deric Dionell Reed, 38, of 204 Grand Lakes Blvd. in Alexandria, turned himself in at the Rapides Parish Detention Center after a warrant had been issued for his arrest, according to the Rapides Parish Sheriff's Office release.
Reed, who resigned from the Alexandria Police Department in January before he was to undergo a disciplinary hearing in connection to the case, was charged with one count of carnal knowledge of a juvenile. He later was released on a $5,000 bond.
The case began on Dec. 1, when a complaint was filed with the sheriff's office alleging that Reed was in a relationship with a juvenile female. Detectives started an investigation "with the assistance and cooperation of the Alexandria Police Department," reads the release.
Meanwhile, the department began its own internal investigation and took Reed off active duty. The incident allegedly took place out of Alexandria and while Reed was off duty.
BPD 'Officer of the Year' Charged With Lewd Conduct -
 BOSTON ( -- It's a case you've never heard about, until now.
Boston Police Sergeant, Edwin Guzman, is accused of sending sexually explicit messages to a minor.
38-year-old Guzman was charged in November, but the case has remained under the radar for months, frustrating the alleged victim and her family who worry justice will not be served.
Guzman is a decorated officer, who was named VFW Law Enforcement Officer of the Year in 2012.
He was recognized for his "great work" as he was promoted to sergeant on the Boston Police force in August 2014. It was around this same time last summer that Guzman was allegedly sending sexually explicit Facebook messages to a 16-year-old girl.
The teenager tells FOX Undercover she considered him a family friend and a father-figure until things took a strange turn on Facebook.
Sergeant Guzman and his alleged victim were sending messages back and forth.
She says Guzman wrote: "You're really pretty. You deserve to be spoiled."
Guzman allegedly asked her if she could keep a secret and offered to buy her a new phone for her birthday.
When the alleged victim was going to tell her mother about the new phone purchase, she says Guzman asked her not to, reminding her that that's the point of the secret. 
“All I'll have to do is when he wants to hang out with me is touch him the way he wants, and I would have to let him touch me also,” said the teenager. “I kind of got scared because I'm like is he offering me a phone just so I can do stuff to him?”
She says there were also questions from Guzman about her experience with sex and then she says he sent her a naked picture of himself. 
She says she deleted the picture right away and only told her mother about the Facebook exchange weeks later.
"The first thing I started doing was crying. I started crying,” said the teen's mother. “She's a little girl. Why would she have to go through this?"
They went to Randolph Police since they live there and then Boston Police Headquarters.
The mother says something unusual happened while she was meeting with Boston Police that made her suspicious: a Facebook message from Sergeant Guzman arrived during the middle of the meeting.
"When I went to the headquarters to report what was going on I received a message from him, “Hey we need to talk. It's important.'"
She never responded, but still wonders if someone at Boston Police headquarters tipped off Guzman that they were there.
She also thinks it's peculiar that there's been no publicity about this case until now.
"I think they're keeping it quiet because of who he is,” said the mother. “I don't want this to be swept under the rug."
Guzman is charged him with sending obscene matter to a minor and accosting and annoying a person of the opposite sex.
Guzman and his attorney declined to talk about the case.
The alleged victim and her mother say Randolph police told them they have been able to get the conversations from Facebook.
Guzman is on paid leave from his job at Boston Police while the case is pending.
Boston Police say they're waiting for the outcome of the case before deciding their next step.
As for the lack of publicity, Randolph Police referred us to the Norfolk District Attorney's office which tells us it doesn't issue press releases for cases involving lewd conduct.
Both mom and daughter are nervous about going public with the allegations, but think it's important to speak out.
“I feel that if he was comfortable enough to do it to her at the age of 16, I would say I don't know what else he's able to do out there,” said the mother.
“I don't want him to do it to anyone else. Since he's a cop, he might use that as an advantage to get what he wants,” said the alleged victim.

GRPD officer accused of rape was new cop
By Leon Hendrix and 24 Hour News 8 web staff Published: March 2, 2015, 4:27 pm Updated: March 3, 2015, 11:59 am
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A Grand Rapids police officer charged with forcing his way into his ex-girlfriend’s home and raping her was new to the force when the allegations surfaced.
Ryan James Bruggink, 24, is facing charges of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and first-degree home invasion. The alleged crimes did not occur while he was on duty, Grand Rapids Police Department Lt. Pat Merrill said.
Michigan State Police say Bruggink came to the victim’s home around 3:30 a.m. on Nov. 25, 2014 after she had asked him not to come over. He got inside the home by “pushing the victim by her face after she cracked the door open,” court records show. Investigators say he then raped the victim.
Days later, the victim reported the crime to Michigan State Police. She didn’t go to local police because of Bruggink’s position as an officer.
MSP notified Grand Rapids police immediately and the officer was placed on administrative leave on Dec. 1. Bruggink resigned on Dec. 2, Merrill said.
Bruggink was new to the force, with just over five months on the job. Merrill said he had not yet been allowed on the road by himself.
Bob Hackett, Bruggink’s attorney of record, declined to discuss the case when reached by 24 Hour News 8 on Tuesday.
“I’ll tell you what,” Hackett said over the phone. “At this point, we’re going to have no comment.”
The case came to light more than a month after charges were filed when local news media discovered the case. The Grand Rapids police chief was out of town and not available to discuss the situation Monday.

In October, Bruggink made the news for rescuing a deer that was trapped inside a baseball diamond. He spoke to 24 Hour News 8 about the rescue, which was caught on video.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Former Irwindale police officer charged with molesting 14-year-old Explorer Program girl

IRWINDALE, California — A former Southern California police officer has been charged with molesting a 14-year-old girl in his department's Explorer Program.
Authorities say ex-Irwindale officer Daniel Camerano began a relationship with the girl while he was an adviser to the program. The eight-year department veteran also allegedly sent sexually suggestive text messages to another female Explorer.
He's charged with a half-dozen counts, including a felony of using a minor for sex acts, and faces nearly 5 ½ years in prison if convicted.
Camerano, who resigned this week, was arrested Wednesday but is free on bail.
It wasn't immediately clear whether he'd obtained an attorney.

School cop sentenced for groping students

By Michelle Casady

SAN ANTONIO — A former San Antonio Independent School District officer who pleaded no contest to groping six middle school girls during pat-down searches in his private office was sentenced Monday to a year in Bexar County Jail.
Judge Maria Teresa Herr had the option of sentencing Walter Scott Nolden III, 33, to either a year's probation or one year in jail under the terms of a plea agreement he signed in April for the Class A misdemeanor.
Nolden was an officer at Page Middle School from January 2010 until April 2012, according to court files.
Each girl told a similar story about being called into his office under suspicion of being high or carrying marijuana. They reported he would “peer down their shirts” and made some “expose their breasts” during his searches for narcotics.
Another girl said he “looked at her breasts three different times before releasing her” and “moved her breast around looking for marijuana.”
During an interview with police, Nolden said he “never touched in any of my searches.”
“I made a lot of bad choices but actually doing anything to harm or harass was never my intention,” he said. “Honestly, police work wasn't my calling. I always wanted to do something to help people and make an impact, but to be a police officer you have to be mean and hard and that's not me.”

Veteran Denver police officer, Tim Kelley, charged with child porn possession; resigns next day

Alan Gathright, John Ferrugia

DENVER - A veteran Denver police officer has resigned after being charged with felony possession of child pornography.
Timothy Joseph Kelley, 49, resigned from the Denver Police Department on Friday -- the same day the 19-year veteran surrendered to the Adams County Sheriff's Office.
The day before he resigned, Kelley was charged in an arrest warrant with one count of sexual exploitation of a child for allegedly possessing several graphic child pornography videos, according to an arrest affidavit obtained by CALL7 Investigator John Ferrugia.
Kelley worked for years in the Denver police crime lab and was lately assigned as a patrolman in District 5.
Kelley is free on a $5,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in Adams County court in July.
The affidavit alleges Kelley's online sharing of child pornography videos was committed between Nov. 17, 2013, and Jan. 6, 2014, from an Internet account at his Westminster condominium on West 112th Avenue.
The investigation began on Jan. 6 when a Douglas County sheriff's detective conducting an online investigation downloaded child pornography videos using a file sharing program from an unknown user's Comcast Internet account. Using a search warrant, the detective obtained Comcast records that identified the suspect as Kelley, the arrest affidavit stated.
On Jan. 23, the sheriff's detective began a joint investigation with a detective for the Westminster Police Department's Crimes Against Children Unit. The detectives learned the suspect computer's owner was using the online nickname "anon_62f50f7b@Ares" in chats with other file-sharing users.
The detectives found two of the videos they had downloaded from the suspect's Internet address showed adult males having sex with prepubescent boys, according to the arrest affidavit. One video title described a man having sex with an 8-year-old boy.
On May 23, Westminster police went to Kelley's condo to execute a search warrant. Kelley arrived home as the warrant was being served.
A detective read Kelley his Miranda rights to remain silent and to be represented by an attorney. Kelley said there was "no reason for me to talk to you right now," but he added that he wanted to be cooperative, the affidavit said.
Police seized several electronic devices from the condo, including an HP mini-laptop found in the master bedroom.
On the computer, investigators found at least seven complete videos, one partial video and one image that "appear to contain sexually exploitive material," the affidavit said. Five video files showed prepubescent boys and girls "engaging in sexual acts with each other and with adults," the affidavit stated.

The affidavit states that 160 of the files on Kelley's computer "contained identified victims of sexual exploitation" found on a database at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

Former Irwindale police officer arrested for alleged acts related to child pornography

By Sarah Favot,

IRWINDALE  A former Irwindale police officer was arrested Wednesday morning by Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies on suspicion of acts related to child pornography.
Daniel Camerano, 27, resigned from the police department Tuesday, Police Chief Anthony Miranda said.
Miranda declined further comment because the matter is a personnel issue.
Camerano was under investigation by the Sheriff’s Department Internal Criminal Investigations Bureau amid accusations he had inappropriate relationships with Explorer Scouts.
The sheriff’s department issued a warrant out of Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center in downtown Los Angeles, Kelley Ford, sheriff’s department jailer, said.
Ford said Camerano was arrested in Rancho Cucamonga.
Camerano was placed on paid administrative leave after the Police Department became aware of the allegations.
Camerano was booked Wednesday afternoon at the sheriff’s Walnut/Diamond Bar station on $240,000 bail.
He is expected to appear in court today, according to Ford.
Camerano is one of several Irwindale police officers arrested or under investigation amid allegations of wrongdoing.
Former police Sgt. David Fraijo was arrested in March on charges of kidnapping to commit another crime, forcible oral copulation, oral copulation under the color of authority, sexual battery by restraint and assault by a public officer.
Fraijo is accused of sexually assaulting a woman in 2012 during a traffic stop. The victim agreed to a settlement with the city for $400,000 in damages after she had initially filed a $20 million civil lawsuit.
In another case, former police officer Dennis Alva was sentenced last year to one year in county jail and five years probation for stealing his 89-year-old father’s life savings of $250,000.
Alva, 48, surrendered to deputies and pleaded no contest to one count of grand theft.
Two lawsuits have been filed against Officer Mario Camacho, a former lieutenant. A suit filed by Officer Rudy Campos claimed Campos didn’t get overtime and got bad performance evaluations after he voted against a contract item Camacho favored.
Another lawsuit filed claimed Camacho sexually harassed a non-sworn police cadet. The city’s insurance provider Joint Powers Insurance Authority pointed to these allegations of corruption in the police department as an area of concern when it placed the city on a Performance Improvement Plan last fall.
JPIA officials said the PIP was implemented due to a series of alleged misconduct and reports of criminal behavior against the police officers as well as criminal public corruption charges against city officials related to lavish trips taken to New York City, where officials spent $200,000 in public funds on expensive hotels and restaurants, limousine services and entertainment.
The charges of embezzlement, misappropriation of public funds and conflict of interest against Mayor Mark Breceda, City Councilman Manuel Garcia, former City Councilwoman, now planning commissioner, Rosemary Ramirez are pending in L.A. County Superior Court.
Retired finance director Abraham “Abe” De Dios pleaded no contest in April to one count of conflict of interest and was sentenced to three years probation.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Mansfield Cop Pleads Guilty To Child Pornography Charges

A  Mansfield police officer has agreed to plead guilty to charges that he produced and received child pornography, and tried to prevent his computer from being seized.
Retired Mansfield officer Robert Anderson agreed to plead guilty Monday to two counts of producing child pornography, and one count each of receiving child pornography and removal of property to prevent seizure.
Anderson’s public defender, Charles Fleming, says the plea agreement was deemed fair by both sides.
The 69-year-old Anderson was arrested Feb. 7 during a larger child porn sting. Prosecutors say he had an account on a website that he used to share pictures and videos of young girls’ underwear and nude juveniles.

New trouble looms for suspended Bunnell police officer

Officer Michael Stavris was put on leave after he was accused of using a fake Facebook account with his daughter’s identity to ask for naked pictures of boys.
Bunnell's city manager now says Stavris used a police database to snoop on three city commissioners.
The police chief said he's investigating to see why Stavris was looking up city lawmakers.
He remains suspended without pay.

Stavris previously worked as a police officer in Edgewater and a school security officer for the Duval County School District.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Former LSU police officer accused of child molestation

Former LSU police officer Thomas Eugene Fife, who was convicted of possessing child porn in 2010, was arrested on Wednesday after a man came forward with allegations that Fife molested him for years.
East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Deputies booked Fife, 67, 16426 Coliseum Ave., Baton Rouge, into Parish Prison on counts of sex crimes against children, prison records show.
Fife declined to comment on the allegations when reached by phone on Wednesday prior to his arrest, besides saying he was unaware that a warrant for his arrest had been issued.
The victim told deputies the molestation began in 1997 when he was 7 years old and continued until 2006, when the victim became fed up with it and threatened to tell people what Fife was doing, the arrest warrant says.
The first time it happened, Fife was driving the victim when he began touching the victim’s genitals, then forced the victim to touch Fife’s genitals, the warrant says.
According to the warrant, Fife continued molesting the boy for more than 10 years after the initial incident.
“The countless number of offenses occurred at two different houses that the accused owned, located with East Baton Rouge Parish,” Cpl. Jacques Jackson wrote in the warrant. “The victim also indicated that the accused would give him money after each encounter.”
The victim told deputies that the reason he waited so long to report the abuse was because he was afraid and embarrassed at what happened to him.
“He also indicated that he came forward because the accused ruined his life,” the warrant says.
Fife denied the allegation when questioned by deputies Saturday, saying the victim made the story up because he refused to give the victim money last July, the warrant says.
Deputies released Fife, but district court Judge Anthony Marabella found there was enough evidence to justify issuing a warrant for his arrest.
Fife pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography in federal court in Baton Rouge in 2010.
In a plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Fife admitted he knowingly possessed pictures of “minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct” and that some of the children were younger than 12.
He was sentenced to 18 months at the Federal Correctional Institute in Seagoville, Texas, southeast of Dallas. A spokesman for the federal Bureau of Prisons said Fife served just under 16 months after receiving 70 days credit for good behavior.
Fife was also fined $10,000, with 10 years of post-prison supervision. The arrest could lead to a judge revoking Fife’s probation from the 2010 guilty plea, meaning he could be kept in prison until a probation hearing is conducted, federal officials said.
The discovery of the pornographic images was made by LSU officers monitoring departmental computers with surveillance software, FBI officials have said.
After that discovery, LSU reported the matter to the FBI, which obtained a warrant to seize Fife’s computer, cellphone and other electronic devices from his office.
The FBI arrested Fife as part of the federal Project Safe Childhood investigations.
Fife, who had worked at the LSU Police Department for about 21 years, resigned four days after FBI agents seized his computer in July 2008.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Former DeKalb cop pleads guilty to child molestation

By Marcus K. Garner

A former DeKalb County police officer accused of molesting a girl will spend five years in jail, prosecutors said.
Manuel Williams pleaded guilty today to child molestation charges that accused him of inappropriately touching a girl in September 2012 while she was at his home.
Williams was arrested in October and resigned from the DeKalb County Police Department, where he’d spent 18 years, authorities said.
He was indicted last month on three counts of molestation, with prosecutors accusing him of kissing the girl on her neck and touching her inappropriately.
“[Williams] took an oath to protect and serve the people of DeKalb County. Instead, he molested a vulnerable young child,” DeKalb County District Attorney Robert James said in a statement emailed to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It’s always disheartening to see sworn officers violate the public’s trust.”
An arrest warrant obtained by The AJC said that the victim reported the alleged incident in a letter to her mother approximately a year later.
The warrant also said Williams confessed.
Williams, through his attorney Gerald Griggs, vehemently denied the accusations and police assertions that he made a confession. He also questioned the girl’s story, noting the time lapse in reporting it.
By phone Tuesday, Griggs wouldn’t acknowledge Williams’ guilt, saying his client wanted to stay out of court.
“He wanted to avoid having to put his family through a painful trial,” Griggs told The AJC. “So he accepted responsibility.”
Williams was released from jail on $10,000 bond after his October arrest. He must turn himself in on Friday, Griggs said.
He will serve five years in state prison followed by five years of probation, prosecutors said.
Williams’ police certification was suspended by the Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council, and he must register as a sex offender, authorities said.

Montgomery police officer trainee charged with sodomy

Kym Klass

A Montgomery police officer trainee has been charged with three counts of first-degree sodomy following a sexual assault involving juvenile family members.
Jaboris Walker, 25, of Montgomery, was transported to the Montgomery County Detention Facility where he was being held under bonds totaling $280,000. He was charged following a sexual assault that occurred at about 3 a.m. Sunday morning in the 3800 block of Happiness Avenue, according to a Montgomery Police Department release. Further investigation revealed an additional victim and additional charges, according to the release. Walker was employed as an MPD trainee in January, and was currently attending the Montgomery Police Academy. Walker's employment with MPD was terminated following his arrest. The case is currently under investigation and no additional details are available for release.

Memphis Police Officer Accused of Sexually Assaulting Girl for 5 Years

By Michael Allen 

Steven Feinberg, a Memphis, Tenn. police officer, was arrested last week for allegedly sexually assaulting a girl for five years, beginning when she was 12 years old.
The Memphis Department of Children’s Services reportedly received an anonymous tip that Feinberg was sexually abusing the girl, who is now 17.
According to the police report, the victim told local police that the allegations were true and occurred in multiple homes that Feinberg has lived in over the years.
WREG reports that investigators claim Feinberg started touching the girl when she was 12 and began having sex with her when she turned 14.
According to his neighbors, the 33-year-old Feinberg is married with children.
Feinberg, who has been removed from duty, has been a Memphis police officer since 2007.
He is being charged with numerous counts, including sexual battery and statutory rape, notes WMC Action News 5.
Feinberg was arrested last Friday, but bailed out on Saturday by paying a $40,000 bond. He is due in court tomorrow, May 27.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Why former cop got probation for child sex crimes

A former police officer and mentor gets probation—not prison—after pleading guilty to child sex crimes.
Last year, Augusta cop Jerry Ballinger was arrested and charged with having sex with a 14-year-old girl. He entered a plea agreement and will serve his punishment outside the walls of prison.
Some are calling and a slap on the wrist.
Ballinger pleaded guilty in February to one count of aggravated indecent liberties with a child. And just this week, KAKE’s I-Team was the only TV crew in Butler County when Ballinger was sentenced to five years probation.
When the I-Team heard that sentence, we dug deeper to find out what the average sentence is for first time sex offenders.
In Kansas, it's is up to eight years behind bars and the convict will be placed on the state’s sex offender registry for the rest of their life.
Here’s what Judge David Ricke told the 44-year-old former cop in court:
“Ballinger falls into a category of offender who present a problem and concern for society,” he said, “and therefore must be watched closely the rest of his life and supervised.”
Ballinger worked in law enforcement for more that 20 years. He met his 14-year-old victim at the Augusta public safety office when she was volunteering as a junior firefighter.
The girl, a middle school student at the time, testified during a preliminary hearing that the cop befriended her. She said he took her out to the country several times and the two had sexual intercourse last year.
The victim’s father said he is furious with the probation sentence. He said what happened to his little girl will scar her for the rest of her life.
Assistant Butler County Attorney Cheryl Pierce prosecuted the case. She said that based on the fact that he’s 44-years-old and was a cop at the time, and the victim was a 14-year-old girl, Ballinger should be in prison based on that fact alone.
Butler County Attorney Darrin Divinney told the KAKE I-Team he entered the plea deal with Ballinger, saying, “Some cases have overwhelming evidence. This one had only circumstantial evidence. Given that fact, there was a far greater risk of acquittal.”
Divinney told the court he did not join in the defense request of just probation, but he also didn’t actively oppose the request.
Judge Ricke ruled that Ballinger would be better served for treatment on probation instead of behind bars, based on a doctor’s report.
“... The strength of doctor Steffan's evaluation report, which indicated that defendant was a low risk to reoffend, that the defendant was amenable to treatment, and that he had a favorable prognosis for treatment, and that he was favorable candidate for probation."
For many in the community, the sentence was a big disappointment.

2 Atlantic County Officers Arrested For Alleged Child Sexual Assault

Andre Corbin
MAYS LANDING, N.J. (CBS) – According to Atlantic County Prosecutor Jim McClain, two police officers have been arrested for separate and independent acts of child sexual assault and official misconduct.
Brigantine Police Officer Ralph Pereira, 43, was arrested on Monday.
He has been charged with several second degree offenses including official misconduct, sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a child. He was also charged with criminal sexual contact, a fourth degree crime.
It is alleged that Pereira committed the acts while holding a position of authority and disciplinary power over a 16-year-old female victim.
Pereira was sent to the Atlantic County Justice Facility in lieu of $100,000 cash bail.
A simultaneous investigation resulted in the arrest of Atlantic City Police Officer Andre Corbin, 43, on Monday.
Corbin was arrested in Atlantic City and charged with the following second degree offenses: official misconduct, sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a child. He was also charged with criminal sexual contact, a fourth degree offense.
Corbin allegedly committed the acts while in a position of authority and holding a position of disciplinary power over a 16-year-old female.
Corbin was sent to the Atlantic County Justice Facility and released after posting $100,000 cash bail.
Authorities say a crime of the second degree carries a potential sentence of five to 10 years of incarceration in prison. A crime of the fourth degree carries a potential sentence of imprisonment that cannot exceed 18 months.