Law Enforcement

Early Saturday morning crash results in one fatality

State - NY Police - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 13:52
At approximately 5:24 A.M on February 17, 2018 troopers responded to a single vehicle fatal crash southbound on Interstate 87 at mile post market 3.8 in the town of Colonie.
Categories: Law Enforcement

NYPD Special Victims hunting for rapist of 12-year-old

Police One - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 13:50

By Colleen Long Associated Press

NEW YORK — The 12-year-old girl was in her school uniform, wearing pigtails. She clutched her princess lunch box as she got off the Bronx bus after tutoring, and that's when the rapist grabbed her by the arm.

"If you scream, I'm gonna kill you," he said, according to police. The stranger dragged her roughly, turning down an alley where he brutally attacked her.

The crime took place on Feb. 24, 2015. And, despite DNA evidence and surveillance footage of the attack, no arrests have been made. As the anniversary nears, the Special Victims Division detective on the case is pleading for anyone with information to send a tip through the CrimeStoppers website or call the hotline.

"She was just a baby," said Det. Diane Crowley. "This is the worst of the worst."

Surveillance footage shows a young man in tan cargo pants, wearing a blue jacket with a hood and a hat. His face is blurry, but it's not impossible to recognize. Part of the problem, Crowley thinks, is the suspect was also young, probably 14 to 16 years old. She thinks people are afraid of being wrong and turning in an innocent kid.

"Obviously with the forensic evidence, there's no way the wrong kid will go to jail for this," she said. "I just think after three years, you told somebody, you told part of it to somebody. A mom saw it. Someone knows something."

There's a reward of more than $22,000 for any tips leading to an arrest.

Crowley is haunted by the case. She said when she arrived to the hospital, the little girl in a bed, still in her uniform, but it was ripped and dirty. Her glasses were askew.

She had a hard time explaining the attack to police.

"She had to describe things that happened to her that she didn't even have the vocabulary for," Crowley said. "She'd never seen a male body before."

She was on the BX 19 bus to East Tremont, where she transfers to another bus to go home. She said he grabbed her when she got off, then walked her into an alley at 2064 Daley Avenue, the first building off 179th Street.

The alley is sunken — not something easily seen from the street, but there's turf covering one of the walls.

After the attack, she ran and called her mother and they went to the hospital, which collected forensic evidence. Crowley set to work. It took police days to find the crime location because the little girl didn't know where she was.

They followed up on hundreds of leads, talked to any gang members in the possibility it was some sort of initiation. They combed through bus footage. The victim didn't remember seeing him at school, but it looked like he might have also have been wearing a uniform.

"I think most sex crimes are about opportunity. She happened to be an easy target," Crowley said. "But when you find a 12 year old and you saw I'm going to kill you ... it's a real cowardly attack," she said.

Crowley said the girl has had ups and downs. She's anxious and can't sleep, struggles in school, but she's growing into a smart young woman and is doing her best.

"But, her innocence was taken. The twinkle in her eye dimmed out," she said. "I would love nothing more than to bring her and her family justice."


Categories: Law Enforcement

ICE dials up pressure on work sites

Police One - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 13:47

By Adam Elmahrek Los Angeles Times

LOS ANGELES — The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents put on their navy blue jackets and walked into a trucking company’s office in Carson this week, sending waves of anxiety rippling through the building.

In the lobby, a nervous office manager greeted the team from ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations, twisting a black pen in her hands like a wet towel. A second manager joined them.

“I see people with vests and cameras,” he said with an anxious chuckle. “That’s not good.”

The visit is part of a renewed wave in ICE’s efforts to crack down on illegal immigration in the Trump era. Federal authorities are stepping up audits of businesses, hoping to catch employers who hired those here illegally. The agency’s acting director wants to increase work-site enforcement 400 percent, part of a much larger effort to identify and deport those here without proper papers.

During a five-day operation in the Los Angeles area that ended Thursday, more than 120 businesses were issued audit notices.

Officials said the purpose of the audits is twofold: to punish employers and employees breaking the rules as well as to discourage people from coming into the U.S. illegally for work, which critics have long said takes away job opportunities from citizens and legal residents.

“It’s a deterrent to somebody who is thinking about crossing the border, paying a smuggler and taking that perilous journey,” said Dani Bennett, an ICE spokeswoman. “If there isn’t that pull factor or perceived easy employment on the other side, there isn’t that incentive to cross in the first place.”

The aggressive actions are the latest in the continued standoff between the Trump administration, which has vowed to crack down hard on illegal immigration, and California, which in October declared itself a “sanctuary state” for immigrants.

After Gov. Jerry Brown signed the sanctuary state bill into law, ICE’s acting director, Thomas Homan, warned that California “better hold on tight.”

But the audits are not new, and according to statistics provided by ICE, they hit their peak in 2013 under President Barack Obama, with more than 3,100 such audits conducted that fiscal year. The Obama administration then shifted focus to deporting those convicted of serious crimes. In fiscal year 2017, ICE said it completed 1,360 audits in the U.S.

The audits can lead to civil fines and even criminal prosecutions if they find employers knowingly violated the law, ICE officials said.

For years, federal law did not bar the hiring of people in the country illegally. That changed in 1986, when President Ronald Reagan signed the Immigration Reform and Control Act, commonly called IRCA. It granted residency to 3 million people in the country without legal status, bolstered border enforcement and for the first time established penalties for hiring people in the country illegally.

But experts said the employer sanctions were watered down to win the support of industry, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and agricultural delegations from the Midwest. IRCA set relatively low fines, and the law said that, to be convicted, employers had to have “knowingly employed” a person who was in the country without documentation.

That made it easier for employers armed with documents that could be fraudulent to claim that they didn’t know, experts said. And it made convicting employers more difficult.

When ICE descended on Bee Sweet Citrus in the town of Fowler as part of broader audits in the Central Valley, the business was told it was being audited for I-9 compliance, and dozens of employees reportedly lost their jobs. The I-9 forms, filled out when employees are first hired, attest to their status to work legally in the country.

As rumors spread in January about an ICE sweep across California, a new state law went into effect prohibiting employers from allowing ICE access to private areas of their businesses without a warrant. It also required businesses to notify employees within 72 hours if they have been given notice of an inspection.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra warned businesses that not obeying the state law could result in a $10,000 fine.

Betty Jo Toccoli, president of the California Small Business Association, said operations like recent sweeps of 7-Eleven stores unfairly target one type of business while giving others a pass. One of the group’s members, a tortilla factory, also received notice about an ICE visit, and 15 employees did not show up to work, she said.

“Why would you target a tortilla manufacturer? Because you think you’re going to find more people to deport,” Toccoli said.

The Los Angeles Times accompanied ICE agents on an audit operation around Los Angeles this week to see the process firsthand. The Times was allowed to ride along with ICE on the condition that the names of the businesses and employees would not be published.

At the Carson trucking company, an ICE auditor explained what was happening. ICE wanted to see the company’s I-9 forms, and the auditor showed company officials what the document looks like.

As the minutes ticked by and the managers realized this was not a raid, their moods relaxed. But they expressed ignorance of I-9 forms, and the operations manager said he had never seen any of his employees fill one out.

The ICE auditor said the agency wanted the most recent payroll and all employee I-9s in seven days. The law allows them to demand those documents within three days, the auditor explained, but the extra four days were being given as a courtesy.

Outside the building, the agents debated how bad a sign it was that the company’s managers had no idea what an I-9 form is. The auditor reasoned that it was not a big deal and that the company’s human resources manager — who was away from the office — probably was acquainted with the forms.

On the ride to the next business, Jennifer Reyes, special agent in charge for Homeland Security Investigations Los Angeles, talked about how ICE is blamed for people losing their jobs as a result of the audits. She argued that it was the employers’ fault for hiring people in the country illegally in the first place.

ICE is trying to strike a balance with these audits, she said. The agency was levying fines on businesses that violate the law that are stiff enough to deprive them of some of the profits gained by hiring people in the country illegally, but not so harsh that the companies are put in danger of having to close.

At another trucking company, in Compton, the owner invited the ICE squad into his office. The room was decorated in memorabilia, including a signed Kobe Bryant jersey and an Elvis cardboard cutout.

This time, the owner, who said he was happy to give them a whole box full of I-9 forms, was well-versed in what the agents were looking for.

“You have seven days,” the ICE auditor said.

©2018 Los Angeles Times


Categories: Law Enforcement

RI State Police Arrests Three Suspects in Connection with Exeter Home Invasion

State - RI Police - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 13:45
Colonel Ann C. Assumpico, Superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police and Director of the Department of Public Safety, announces that Troopers from the State Police Major Crimes Unit, Wickford Barracks and Hope Valley Barracks, along with members of the North Kingstown Police Department, have...
Categories: Law Enforcement

Cop killings up so far in 2018

Police One - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 13:42

By Josh Sweigart and Mark Gokavi Dayton Daily News, Ohio

Two Westerville police officers killed last weekend and another slain Tuesday in Chicago brought to 12 the number of cops gunned down in the line of duty this year, marking a dramatic increase in such tragedies compared to this time in previous years.

The last such incident locally was New Year’s Day 2011, when Clark County Sheriff’s Office deputy Suzanne Hopper was shot and killed at the Enon Beach campground. Since then, eight Ohio peace officers have had their watch ended by a deadly bullet.

“I hope it heightens the alert of everyone to pay attention more of your surroundings,” said Dayton Fraternal Order of Police president Rick Oakley, a detective with Dayton police.

“I put it out to my guys all the time. If you’re not on something and you hear your brother or sister out there on a traffic call, go back them up. If you’re not doing anything, just go there and sit and make sure that there’s an extra set of eyes to make sure nothing’s going on.”

While every situation is unique, the deadly theme that played out in Westerville has been repeated over and over again: police responding to a domestic disturbance faced someone whose criminal history should have kept him from having a gun.

Westerville officers Eric Joering, 39, and Anthony Morelli, 54, were gunned down in the Columbus suburb Feb. 10, allegedly by 30-year-old Quentin Smith, after responding to a 911 hang-up call.

A second 911 call came from Smith’s wife Candace from the bushes outside her house.

“Please help,” she pleaded, telling the dispatcher her daughter was still in the home. “He shot the police officers.”

Westerville police had responded to domestic disputes at the Smith’s home several times before. In November, Candace told them that her husband threatened to kill her, their daughter and himself, and she asked about a protection order.

‘You factor in the worst’

Domestic violence calls for police are both numerous and unpredictable.

Dayton police responded to 4,448 domestic violence calls last year and 5,356 the year before, for a two-year total of 9,804 — or more than 13 per day.

Sgt. Ted Jackson, the supervisor at the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office regional training center, said departmental policy dictates a two-officer response to domestic violence and 911 hang-up calls because of the potential for a volatile situation.

“You don’t necessarily know what you’re getting yourself into,” Jackson said. “You factor in the worst. You do a risk-management situation where you expect the worst and hope for the best.”

Violence in such instances can erupt in an instance. In Kirkersville, Ohio, last May, a man with a protection order against him went to his girlfriend’s work and killed her, her co-worker and Kirkersville Police Chief Eric DiSario before turning a gun on himself. The shooter, Thomas Hartless, had a history of violence, including an assault conviction in the 1990s and serving eight months of a two-year prison sentence for abducting another girlfriend in 2009.

The only other Ohio police officer killed last year resulted from an incident similar to what confronted the two Westerville police officers. Girard Officer Justin Leo and his partner responded to a 911 call from a woman who said her boyfriend was drunk, had guns and was scaring her kids. The man, Jason Marble, allegedly shot Leo dead before getting killed by the return fire from Leo’s partner.

Training for deadly situations

A Chicago police commander Tuesday became the 12th law enforcement officer killed on duty this year when he was reportedly gunned down by a repeat felon while pursuing a suspect downtown.

During the same time period in 2017, four officers were killed in violent incidents, according to the FBI, which tracks shootings of police.

The FBI says 46 law enforcement officers were killed by criminals last year and 66 in 2016.

An annual report for 2017 isn’t out yet, but 17 of the deaths in 2016 came from an ambush and 13 while responding to a disturbance call.

“Ever since I started my career in 1978 we were well schooled on when you do a domestic violence call you are walking into a potential deadly situation,” said Pete Willis, training coordinator for the Sinclair Police Academy. “There’s a lot of emotions involved. People tend to become very protective of their home.”

The academy teaches the Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy curriculum, which includes 12 hours of training in handling domestic violence. The training manual spells out the risk: “Domestic violence calls clearly pose a lethal risk to officers. If suspects are willing to kill their partner or family member, they would have no qualms killing a stranger (i.e., the responding officer).”

Willis has come under fire more than once during his 25 years with the Dayton police force.

“At the time you react with training,” he said. “After it’s all said and done, the adrenaline surge will kick you hard and you’ll shake for a little bit.”

Armor ‘not an end all be all’

Jackson, a 22-year vet who has had various roles that have placed him in dangerous situations, said loss of life can happen even when well-equipped officers undergo extensive training.

National statistics bear that out. Of the 62 police officers who died in shootings in 2016, 51 were wearing body armor.

While body armor can save a life, it’s “not an end-all, be-all,” Jackson said. “It covers primary body parts … you have weaponry and munitions out there that can defeat it or you can succumb to injuries out and around the ballistic vest.”

Hopper was killed while wearing a bulletproof vest, as was a Sandusky officer killed two months after her. The bullet that killed a Cincinnati officer in 2015 came just centimeters from hitting his vest. A Columbus SWAT team officer was shot in the head in 2016 while in the turret of an armored vehicle.

Common themes

Most cop-killers have previous criminal records, according to FBI statistics. In 2016, 35 of the people who killed police officers had a prior arrest for a violent crime – including four for murder – and 22 had a prior weapons violation.

Quentin Smith, the suspect in the Westerville shootings, always carried a gun, his wife told authorities, even though he was prohibited from having a firearm after spending four years in prison for felony burglary and misdemeanor domestic violence charges in 2009.

Gerald Lawson of Warrensville Heights was charged in federal court last week with providing Smith with the weapon he allegedly used to shoot the two Westerville officers.

“An undisclosed witness told investigators Smith provided Lawson money for the firearm and an extra $100 to compensate Lawson — who knew Smith had been convicted of a felony — for buying the gun for him,” a U.S. Department of Justice release says.

The Kirkersville shooter had more than 60 guns at his home, though his felony conviction barred him from purchasing, owning or carrying a firearm. His father told investigators he obtained most of his firearms from gun shows, where unlicensed dealers aren’t required to conduct background checks.

The shotgun Michael Ferryman used to kill Hopper at the Enon Beach campground was bought by his girlfriend, who was later sentenced to five years in state prison for providing him with the weapon. Multiple guns were found in his trailer, though Ferryman was prohibited from owning a gun because of his prior criminal history.

Hopper, a mother of two, was responding to a report of gunfire at the campground when Ferryman shot her at close range with the shotgun. When backup arrived, shots were exchanged and an officer, Jeremy Blum, was wounded. Ferryman was found dead in the trailer.

Stronger penalties sought

Keeping guns out of the hands of dangerous people is a timeless struggle for law enforcement.

Fewer than a third of offenders in Ohio charged with weapons offenses were convicted, according to a 2012 study by an Ohio State University professor, and many of the gun charges were dismissed during judicial proceedings.

In response to the study, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine’s Violent Crimes with Guns Advisory Task Group recommended stronger penalties for repeat offenders.

There are currently 1,187 people in state prison in Ohio for charges that include illegally having a weapon.

Toby Hoover, director of the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence, said the data underscores the need for universal background checks for gun sales. Currently, private owners and sellers are not required to conduct background checks, though they are forbidden from selling to someone they know is prohibited from having a gun.

“The first thing you can do is make sure every single gun sale — whether it’s at a store, gun show or between two people — has a background check,” she said.

Joe Eaton, southwest Ohio spokesman for the Buckeye Firearms Association, said weapons charges are often used as a chip in plea bargains.

He supports strong penalties for people who violate laws against providing weapons to convicted felons, and said the firearms industry backs public awareness campaigns like “Don’t lie for the other guy,” a national campaign to prevent the type of “straw man” purchases that allowed Smith to get his gun.

“The people who are committing this deception need to realize there are severe penalties,” he said.

‘We have to be constantly vigilant’

Last week, just as they do whenever someone in blue is killed, a procession of police officers from around the state came to Westerville to pay tribute to officers Eric Joering and Anthony Morelli.

Jackson said the entire law enforcement community grieves for fallen officers. “This is a community, a sisterhood and a brotherhood,” he said.

But something else happens, too, when an officer is killed, he said: a search for answers.

“It’s a sad situation, but it’s also a learning and training situation,” Jackson said. “We have to be constantly vigilant of our environments and the situation can change very quickly. Complacency is no place for law enforcement.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

©2018 the Dayton Daily News (Dayton, Ohio)


Categories: Law Enforcement

Trump backs efforts for improved FBI gun checks

Police One - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 13:38

By David Fleshler Sun Sentinel

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — President Donald Trump on Monday announced willingness to consider a modest gun-control proposal introduced last year to strengthen the federal background-check system.

The White House said Trump would consider backing a bill, which had not been opposed by the National Rifle Association, that would require states and federal agencies to produce plans to improve the reporting of criminal offenses and other information to the national instant background check system. The lead sponsors are Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn.

“The President spoke to Senator Cornyn on Friday about the bi-partisan bill he and Sen. Murphy introduced to improve Federal Compliance with Criminal Background check Legislation,” the White House said in a statement Monday morning. “While discussions are ongoing and revisions are being considered, the President is supportive of efforts to improve the Federal background check system.”

This proposal falls far short of what many students, parents and gun-control advocates are seeking, such as bans on assault rifles or high-capacity magazines.

©2018 Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)


Categories: Law Enforcement

Wife Guilty of Assisting in Murder of 2 Northern California Deputies

Police Magazine - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:58

Jurors found a Utah woman guilty of murder Thursday for aiding her husband as he killed two Northern California sheriff's deputies in 2014.

The Sacramento County jury convicted Janelle Monroy Thursday of 10 charges including murder, attempted murder and carjacking, attempted carjacking, and possessing an assault rifle. They rejected her argument that she feared Luis Bracamontes would have killed her if she didn't help him.

She faces a possible life sentence when she is sentenced March 23, reports the Associated Press.

Prosecutors said she willingly moved Bracamontes' rifle from vehicle to stolen vehicle after he killed Sacramento County Deputy Danny Oliver and before he killed Placer County Detective Michael Davis Jr. hours later.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Bracamontes after he was convicted by a separate jury.

 

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Categories: Law Enforcement

Video: Texas Trooper Wounded in Shootout After Traffic Stop

Police Magazine - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:36

VIDEO: Texas Trooper Wounded in Shootout After Traffic Stop

A Texas Department of Public Safety Trooper and a suspect were airlifted to University Hospital after a shootout unfolded along I-10 East Sunday afternoon.

According to DPS spokesman Deon Cockrell, the shootout happened after the suspect gave the trooper a false name during a traffic stop, resisted arrest, and fled, leading the trooper on a chase, reports KSAT.

The trooper was able to stop the suspect, but when the suspect got out of the car, Cockrell said the suspect fired at the trooper and the trooper returned fire. Both were shot.

The trooper was flown to University Hospital in the DPS helicopter after suffering a gunshot wound to the arm, according to scanner traffic. The suspect was taken to the same hospital via AirLife, also with a gunshot wound.

Cockrell did not provide the condition of the trooper or the suspect.

 

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Categories: Law Enforcement

NH Senate OKs Making Court Officers Eligible for Death Benefit

Police Magazine - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 11:46

New Hampshire's court security officers who are killed in the line of duty would be eligible for the same death benefits as police officers and firefighters under a bill passed by the state Senate.

Under current law, families of police officers and firefighters who are killed in the line of duty receive $100,000. A bill that would expand that to court security officers passed the Senate on Thursday, reports the Associated Press.

 

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Categories: Law Enforcement

Florida Deputy Killed in Crash with Semi

Police Magazine - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 11:30

A Florida deputy was killed Saturday morning after a blown tire caused a semi tractor-trailer to collide with his patrol car on Interstate 95 in Brevard County, reports the Bradenton Herald.

Brevard County (FL) Sheriff's Office Deputy Kevin Stanton, 32, of Titusville was killed in the crash at 5:10 a.m., according to the Florida Highway Patrol. He was a training officer for the sheriff's office and had been with the agency for more than a decade, officials said.

The right front tire of the semi, which was loaded with car parts, sustained a tread separation, and the truck veered into the path of the deputy's cruiser, the FHP said. Both vehicles were southbound near mile marker 227.

 

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Categories: Law Enforcement

Deputies Arrest MS-13 Gang Member With AK-47

Sheriff - Hillsboro County (Tampa, FL) - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 10:06
He was standing in the street yelling at passing cars.
Categories: Law Enforcement

Missing Runaway Juvenile

Sheriff - Hillsboro County (Tampa, FL) - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 10:03
She was last seen on February 17.
Categories: Law Enforcement

Detective Bureau

State - RI Police - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 09:45
MEDIA CONTACT: Major Dennis B. Fleming, Detective Commander (#401-444-1005) No arrests to report.
Categories: Law Enforcement

State Police Canandaigua arrest for DWI

State - NY Police - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 09:38
State Police in Canandaigua arrested a 42 year old  man for Driving While Intoxicated
Categories: Law Enforcement

Missing Runaway Juvenile

Sheriff - Hillsboro County (Tampa, FL) - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 08:57
Teenager left and has not returned.
Categories: Law Enforcement

Killings of Officers Up So Far in 2018

Officer.com - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 08:38
Two Westerville police officers killed last weekend and another slain Tuesday in Chicago brought to 12 the number of cops gunned down in the line of duty this year, marking a dramatic increase in such tragedies compared to this time in previous years.
Categories: Law Enforcement

Fatal Industrial Accident

Sheriff - Hillsboro County (Tampa, FL) - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 08:32
A man became trapped inside piping at a construction site.
Categories: Law Enforcement

Missing Endandered Adult

Sheriff - Hillsboro County (Tampa, FL) - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 08:27
He threatened to harm himself.
Categories: Law Enforcement

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