Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Is California Cop Aaron Stringer a Necrophiliac?

Senior Police Officer Aaron Stringer

Bakersfield, California

The Bakersfield Police Department issued a statement on Monday, indicating that senor officer Aaron Stringer has been placed on paid administrative leave. Of course, the statement was vague in terms of the details, but we now know the rather sickening details.

Stringer, according to the statement, “manipulated,” or improperly touched the body of Ramiro Villegas inside a hospital room last November, one day after he had been shot by police.

The Bakersfield Californian newspaper reported on Friday that he pretended to tickle Villegas' feet and tried to pry-open his mouth.

The newspaper, citing reports it obtained from the department, said he told another officer at the hospital that he "loves playing with dead bodies," before laughing.

The Californian said Stringer was not permitted by the county coroner's office to touch the body. It quoted the department's reports as saying he declined to comment on the allegations and had hired an attorney.

According to police, officers shot Villegas dead the night of Nov. 13, following a brief high-speed pursuit, when he got out of his car and "aggressively" approached officers before he "reached towards his front waistband."

No weapon was found at the scene.

In February, the Kern County District Attorney's Office declined to bring criminal charges in the case, the statement said.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Former West Columbia Police Chief and Accused Child Molester Michael Palmer Found Dead Days Before Trial

Michael Palmer Booking Photo
West Columbia, Texas

We have a follow-up on a story from 2013, involving former West Columbia Police Chief Michael Palmer. Back then, he was accused of tampering with evidence, possession of a controlled substance, stealing drugs during drug investigations, as well as taking medications from dead hospice patients.

He disappeared and then reappeared about a month later. Once back, he was facing new charges, after investigators discovered evidence that he had bound, gagged and sexually assaulted an underage boy, repeatedly, beginning in 1998. Investigators even found bondage gear in Palmer’s office at the police Department.

Palmer was scheduled to go on trial for aggravated sex assault of a child on Monday, but was found dead in his backyard last Thursday.

Palmer’s cause of death, according to West Columbia police, has not been released.

In addition to the aggravated sexual assault of a child charge, Palmer also faced eight counts of tampering with evidence.

Palmer lost his job in February 2013 before the child sex charges were filed when fellow officers complained he was stealing pain killers taken as evidence in police investigations.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Update: Veteran Houston Police Officer Noe Juarez Indicted on Federal Charges of Cocaine Distribution

Houston Police Officer Noe Juarez

Houston, Texas

Yesterday, we announced that veteran HPD officer Noe Juarez was arrested after arriving to work. While we knew that a federal warrant was involved, few details were released.

Today, Juarez was indicted on charges of conspiracy to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine hydrochloride, in addition to conspiracy to possess firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking offense.

A Mexican citizen named Sergio Grimaldo, 32, was also charged.

The Houston Police Department has relieved the 46-year-old Juarez, without pay, pending the outcome of the federal investigation.

If convicted of conspiracy to distribute cocaine, each defendant faces a sentence of 10 years to life imprisonment, followed by a minimum of five years of supervised release and a $10,000 fine.

If convicted of conspiracy to possess a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking, Juarez faces a maximum of 20 years imprisonment, followed by a maximum of three years of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine.

Juarez became an officer with HPD in 1995, and for most of his career served as a patrolman with the Central Patrol Division. In March, he transferred to he department's motorcycle detail.

Texas Deputy Caught on Video Punching Pregnant Woman

Greenville, Texas (Hunt County)

Another video has surfaced, showing a law enforcement officer using excessive force. This time around, it’s in Texas.

Deanna Robinson, 38, of Quinlan, said she was assaulted by a deputy with the Hunt County Sheriff’s Department. The attack occurred on March 4, while she was nine-months pregnant.

The cop beating followed Child Protective Services showing up to take Robinson’s 18-month-old child into state custody, according to NBC DFW. Robinson's 9-year-old son allegedly told school officials he was scared to go home because his mom and dad were fighting. Four children were removed from the home after an interview with the children's father, according to the station. They are in temporary CPS custody.

"I stepped in front of my son and put my hands up and began screaming, 'No, you're not touching my kid,'" Robinson said at a news conference at her attorney’s office in Greenville. "I was handcuffed almost immediately and shoved into a corner by two giant men. I wouldn't have had an opportunity to assault anyone. There's nothing to warrant what they did to me."

The incident went viral after a video of the alleged assault was posted on social media.

The video, which is graphic and contains explicit language, appears to show an officer struggling with Robinson before punching her. The video cuts off after one punch. However, Robinson says that she was punched several more times — all while handcuffed.

Deputies and CPS showed up after Robinson's 9-year-old son told school officials he was scared to go home because his mom and dad were fighting, CBS DFW reports.

In a statement posted to the department's Facebook page, Hunt County Sheriff Randy Meeks said his office is investigating Robinson's allegations.

"I have become aware of an internet allegation accusing one of my deputies of improper actions," the statement said. "I have initiated an administrative investigation to determine if any policy violations occurred. Public confidence and trust in the Sheriff's Office is a high priority for me and we take all allegations of misconduct seriously."

The name of the deputy in question has not been released.

Robinson was charged with interfering and assault on an officer. Her healthy child was born days after the alleged assault.

"There's no reason in my mind that an officer should pull his hand up above his body and hit a pregnant woman multiple times," Carol Gustin, one of Robinson's attorneys, told WFAA. "Law officers are there to protect and serve. Where was the protection for her and this baby?"

South Carolina Cop Michael Slager Charged With Murder for Shooting Unarmed Man in the Back

Michael Slager Booking Photo
Charleston, South Carolina

A police officer in South Carolina has been officially charged with murder, now that a video has surfaced showing him shooting an unarmed man who was running away.

The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division announced Tuesday that Michael Slager, an officer with the North Charleston Police Department, was arrested and charged with murder. Slager, if found guilty, could face up to life in prison or death.

The shooting took place Saturday morning after a traffic stop, SLED said. Video obtained by The New York Times shows what happened.

The victim was a black man, identified as 50-year-old Walter Scott. In the video, the victim breaks away from the white officer. Something falls, and the officer fires eight shots at the man as he runs away. Scott, who appears to be unarmed, drops to the ground.

"I can tell you that as the result of that video and the bad decision made by our officer, he will be charged with murder," North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey told reporters Tuesday. "When you're wrong, you're wrong. And if you make a bad decision -- don't care if you're behind the shield or just a citizen on the street -- you have to live by that decision."

Scott was remembered by his brother as loving, kind and outgoing, somebody who "knew everybody." He spent two years in the Coast Guard, and had four children.

"All we wanted was the truth," said Anthony Scott. "I don't think that all police officers are bad cops, but there are some bad ones out there, and I don't want to see anyone get shot down the way that my brother got shot down."

Slager’s attorney, David Aylor, initially said that his client followed the appropriate policies and procedures. Aylor later told CNN that he no longer represents the officer, and it was unclear whether Slager had obtained new representation.

Police reports show that Slager said he used his Taser. The officer later said: "Shots fired and the subject is down."

Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina said on Twitter that he had watched the video and that "the senseless shooting and taking of #WalterScott's life was absolutely unnecessary and avoidable."

The Justice Department released a statement Tuesday saying it would "take appropriate action in light of the evidence and developments in the state case."

"The South Carolina Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation has opened an investigation concurrent with the S.C. Law Enforcement Division and are providing aid as necessary to the state investigation. The Department of Justice Civil Rights Division and the South Carolina U.S. Attorney's Office will work with the FBI in the investigation," it read.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Houston Police Officer Noe Juarez Arrested by Federal Drug Enforcement Agents

Officer Noe Juarez
Houston, Texas

The Houston Police Department is short one man, after federal agents requested the arrest of an officer during the Tuesday morning roll call.

A spokesperson for the Federal Bureau of Investigations, Shauna Dunlap, confirms Officer Noe Juarez was arrested by Houston police and turned over to federal agents with the Drug Enforcement Agency and FBI after he arrived for work at the HPD Central Command. An arrest warrant had been issued for Juarez by a federal court in New Orleans.

Neither Dunlap nor Anna Christman, with the federal attorney's office in New Orleans, would discuss the specific charge against Juarez until the indictment is unsealed, but police sources told KPRC-TV that Juarez was arrested in connection with a federal drug probe.

Juarez has been a Houston Police Officer since 1995, and for most of his career served as a patrolman with the Central Patrol Division. In March, he transferred to he department's motorcycle detail.

Back in 2009, Juarez was named as one of the Houston Police Officers Union's officers of the year for his work with the Central Division Tactical Unit.

If his name sounds familiar, Juarez gained media attention In February 2008, as one of three officers involved in a shooting at Northwest Mall that left one of the policemen wounded, and a robbery suspect dead. Juarez did not fire the fatal shot.

In 2006, Juarez was named as a defendant in a federal wrongful arrest lawsuit that was settled out of court.

Juarez is scheduled to appear before a federal magistrate on Wednesday. Federal officials said more information will be made available following the court appearance.

Harris County Sheriff’s Deputy Frank Augustine Jr. Arrested for Physical Violence Against Girlfriend

Frank Augustine Jr. Booking Photo
Houston, Texas

A deputy with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office is accused of violently attacking his girlfriend while she slept in bed.

Frank Augustine Jr. is charged with assault of a family member.

It all started with a family disturbance call at Augustine’s home on March 29. The woman, identified as Augustine’s girlfriend, told Investigators with the Harris County Precinct 4 Constables Domestic Violence Unit that Augustine physically attacked her.

The victim said Augustine struck her in the head with a motorcycle helmet while she slept in bed. During the assault, he allegedly strangled her to the point where she could not breathe, causing pain and injuries.

"We never know the real reasons why people get that far especially with a spouse or girlfriend, but it did get to that point where he assaulted her with a helmet, and not only that, he wasn't finished, he went ahead and tried to complete the job by strangling her," said Asst. Chief Tim Cannon, with the Harris County Precinct 4 Constable's Office.

Augustine, 52, was arrested and taken into custody, and an emergency protection order was granted for the girlfriend.

Augustine was released on a $5,000 bond. He's due back in court on May 4.
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