Current Events

Upcoming training: Current event news articles listed below training section. 


Date/Time Event
03/21/2018 – 03/23/2018
08:00 -17:00
IA-101: Introduction to Internal Affairs Investigations (Fairfax County, Washington DC)
Fairfax County Criminal Justice Academy, Chantilly Virginia
03/21/2018 – 03/23/2018
08:00 -17:00
LEIA-101: Introduction to Law Enforcement Inspections and Auditing (Norfolk Area)
Tidewater Community College Chesapeake Campus, Chesapeake VA
04/17/2018 – 04/20/2018
08:00 -17:00
LEIA-201: Law Enforcement Inspections and Auditing Certificate (Phoenix)
National Law Enforcement Telecommunications Systems, Phoenix AZ
04/23/2018 – 04/25/2018
08:00 -16:00
LEIA-101: Introduction to Law Enforcement Inspections and Auditing Course (Atlanta Area)
Gwinnett County Police Training Center, Lawrenceville GA

March 21: NJ police brutality: State targets bad cops after Press investigation

Following an Asbury Park Press investigation into police brutality that exposed the lack of oversight of rogue cops, the state attorney general Tuesday issued sweeping new guidelines to weed out drug-abusing cops and those who flout the law.

Attorney General Gurbir Grewal issued two directives for every police department in the state. The first directive orders mandatory, random drug testing in every department and the second directive sets up an “early warning” system to identify bad cops before they injure or kill residents. Both are posted at the bottom of this story.

March 21: Federal & State Law Enforcement Authorities Announce Formation of Special Unit to Fight Public Corruption

DOJ: CHARLESTON, W.Va. — United States Attorney Mike Stuart and representatives from federal and state law enforcement announced today the formation of a Public Integrity Special Investigations Unit to investigate corrupt public officials, the misuse of public funds, campaign and election law violations and suspected criminal activity.

The Public Integrity Special Investigations Unit includes representatives from federal and state agencies including the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the United States Postal Inspection Service; the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division; the Inspector General’s Offices of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense  and the Department of Homeland Security; the West Virginia State Police; the West Virginia Commission on Special Investigations; and the West Virginia State Auditor’s Office.  The West Virginia Secretary of State’s Office will assist in investigating campaign and election law violations.

March 21: Massachusetts State Police audit finds overtime abuse

BOSTON (AP) — A Massachusetts State Police internal audit found that more than 20 troopers may have been paid overtime for shifts they did not work, the department’s commander, said Tuesday.

March 21: Cleveland homicide detective didn’t investigate fatal shooting for two years after DNA match

CLEVELAND, Ohio — A Cleveland police homicide detective failed to investigate a 2015 fatal shooting for two years after getting a DNA match for the suspected killer.

Det. Rhonda Gray was suspended 10 days without pay for failing to conduct a follow-up investigation after the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner told the 32-year police veteran of the DNA match

March 21: LAPD to reverse policy and make body camera, patrol car videos public

LA Times: The Los Angeles Police Department’s years-long practice of keeping video from body cameras and patrol cars under wraps will soon end after the agency’s civilian bosses approved a policy Tuesday that requires the release of recordings in the future.

The 4-0 vote by the Police Commission marks a dramatic turnaround for a department that refused to make such footage public even as it rolled out thousands of body cameras to officers in recent years.

The new approach will give the public a firsthand look at some of the most crucial moments involving the LAPD, including shootings by officers, deaths that occur in their custody and other encounters when they use force that kills or seriously injures someone.

“Transparency and accountability are the bedrocks of building public trust,” said Commissioner Shane Murphy Goldsmith, who helped draft the policy. “The public has a right to see these videos.”

March 20: Despite promises of reform, Hancock and team failed to seek answers, accountability in excessive force homicide

Colorado Independent: A disturbing report outlines Mayor Michael Hancock’s administration’s inaction in response to sheriff’s deputies’ killing of a mentally ill homeless man in Denver’s jail.

The 47-page review by Denver’s Independent Safety Monitor Nick Mitchell’s office shows in painstaking detail the administration’s unwillingness – and, at points, flat-out refusal – to fully investigate the 2015 homicide of Michael Marshall and to learn from fatal mistakes in the case.

Link to investigation:

March 20: OIG: Audit Finds Weaknesses with FBI Internet Security Program and DirectorNet Program

HS Today: The OIG has published results from audits on the FBI’s Internet Security Program and its DirectorNet program, which identified weaknesses in both.

External auditors KPMG carried out a performance audit on the FBI’s overall internet security program and practices to determine whether they were consistent with the requirements of the Federal Information Security Modernization Act (FISMA), which the OIG reviewed. It identified weaknesses in six out of seven domain areas in the FBI’s ISP, and made 38 recommendations for improving it.

Link to report:

March 20: Texas AG Opinion: Texas Cops Under Investigation Can Watch ‘Any’ Body Cam Footage Before Answering Questions

Texas Observer: Some fear the policy will let officers get their story straight about questionable police encounters before putting anything on record.

March 20: Minneapolis PD present first quarterly audit of body cam use

Journal MPLS: The Minneapolis Police Department’s first quarterly audit of its body-worn camera program showed the video evidence collected by those cameras was incorrectly logged nearly one-quarter of the time.

The audit examined a random sample of 248 videos recorded by 25 officers between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31. Sixty-one of those videos — about 24 percent of the total — were filed without being attached to the proper case number, according to the findings Cmdr. Chris Granger presented to the City Council’s Public Safety and Emergency Management Committee on March 15.

March 19: Watchdog blasts Denver sheriff’s response to inmate’s death

ABC News: The Denver Sheriff’s Department mishandled an investigation into the 2015 death of a man restrained by deputies at the jail and must change its disciplinary and investigative process, a law enforcement watchdog agency said in a blistering report Monday that focused new attention on a case that has already resulted in a $4.6 million settlement.

The report made public by Denver’s independent police monitor, a civilian oversight agency for Denver’s police and sheriff departments, recommends that a civilian be put in charge of the Internal Affairs Bureau of the sheriff’s department that investigates allegations of officer misconduct.

March 18: San Diego police points-for-arrests program under investigation

San Diego Union Tribune: San Diego police Chief David Nisleit has launched an internal investigation into a program intended to reward officers for drug-related arrests and citations in communities near the border with Mexico.

According to a memo sent to about 90 officers within the department’s Southern Division last week, patrol officers were to receive a half a point to 2 points for the arrests or citations, with the top point-earners given the opportunity to work in specialized units for up to a month.

On Friday, Nisleit denounced the concept of the program, which he said was not authorized by the department’s top brass. He said the program was shut down before it was implemented.

March 18: Honolulu police chief defends reassignment of union leaders

HONOLULU (AP) — The reassignment of Honolulu police union leaders was part of department-wide shuffling to put more officers on the streets, according to the police chief.

Police Chief Susan Ballard testified before the Hawaii Labor Relations Board on Friday after the police union filed a complaint last month, claiming the she violated the city’s collective bargaining agreement.

The State of Hawaii Organization of Police Officers claimed that union President Tenari Maafala and other union officials were targeted and given less desirable assignments.

March 17: Does the LAPD still need gang injunctions to fight crime? The city is about to find out

LA Times: For decades, police in Los Angeles have considered gang injunctions an invaluable tool that helped reduce violent crime in a region that once gained infamy as the birthing ground of some of the country’s most notorious gangs.

The city at one point had injunctions against nearly 8,900 people in the city, but that number had been reduced to just 1,450 by the end of last year amid growing criticism that the injunctions — which can severely restrict the movements, even the clothing, of suspected gang members — are overly broad and often unfairly target black and Latino men.

This week, a federal judge barred the city from enforcing almost all of its remaining injunctions. But it remains an open question whether the move will have much of an effect on policing at a time when gang violence is waning and law enforcement officials are turning to different methods to combat the gangs that remain.

March 17: Small law enforcement agencies using drones to tackle crime

MERCED, Calif. (KFSN) — It’s a helpful tool to combat crime at your fingertips, and more North Valley police departments are using drone technology to keep you safe.

The Los Banos police department started its drone program earlier this year. Commander Jason Hedden is the first FAA licensed officer on the force.

“Sheriff Departments and Police Departments with very expensive aviation programs were the only law enforcement agencies to have this asset, so for us, it’s beneficial to have this bird eyes view from the sky to help us see what’s going on,” said Hedden.

The drones help officers cover more ground during search and rescue situations and investigating crime scenes.

Recently the drone was used as they served a search warrant while looking for a shooter on the run.

Merced police say when requesting aircraft, it can sometimes take up to an hour. With drones, they can take one out of their trunk, and have it up in the air in just minutes.

March 16: Alabama sheriff legally used $750K in inmate food funds to buy beach house

 CBS: GADSDEN, Ala. — An Alabama sheriff legally used more than $750,000 of funds meant to feed inmates to purchase a beach house.  Etowah County Sheriff Todd Entrekin told The Birmingham News he follows a state law passed before World War II that allows sheriffs to keep “excess” inmate-feeding funds for themselves.

Entrekin reported on state ethics forms that he made “more than $250,000” each of the past three years through the funds.

The sheriff’s annual salary is more than $93,000. He and his wife purchased a four-bedroom house with an in-ground pool and canal access in September for $740,000.

March 16: Couple to get $2.5 million after California police called abduction a hoax

Denver Post: VALLEJO, Calif. — A couple reached a $2.5 million settlement with a Northern California city and its police department after investigators dismissed the woman’s elaborate and bizarre kidnapping as a hoax.

Police in the city of Vallejo initially discounted a report by Denise Huskins and her boyfriend, Aaron Quinn, that a masked intruder drugged them in their home and then kidnapped her in 2015.

The assailant sexually assaulted Huskins and released her two days later outside her family’s home in Southern California. The Associated Press doesn’t normally name victims of sexual assault, but Huskins has frequently spoken publicly about the case in the past.

March 16: ‘Don’t Elect Me:’ Why States Should Abolish County Sheriffs’ Offices

The Crime Report: The office of sheriff is “anachronistic,” unaccountable to the public, and should be replaced with a more professional county police department, says a new study.

“There still must be a county law enforcement agency to serve unincorporated municipalities where they exist,” argues the study, published in the March 2018 edition of the Virginia Law Review.

“However, the twentieth century was a story of policing becoming more professionalized, and counties have increasingly found that a professional, dedicated county police department is a better organization to handle law enforcement than a jack-of-all-trades sheriff.”

The study, written by James Tomberlin of the University of Virginia School of Law, said local sheriff’s elections provide minimal accountability since so many incumbents run unopposed.

Link to study:

March 16: Three Denver sheriff’s deputies reassigned amid investigation into release of suspect wanted by ICE

Denver Post: Three Denver Sheriff’s deputies have been reassigned amid an investigation into the botched release of a man after he allegedly killed someone in a hit-and-run crash, even though he was subject to a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement civil detainer.

Denver Public Safety Director Troy Riggs confirmed Wednesday afternoon the three deputies had been reassigned.

March 16: Defense OIG awarded “most improved” in rankings of best places to work

Federal News Radio: Five years ago, the Department of Defense’s office of the inspector general had some of the lowest employee satisfaction rates in the federal government. But since 2013, it’s jumped 20 points in the Partnership for Public Service’s index of the best places to work in government, including more than nine points in just the last year.

March 16: Judge deals major blow to Newark’s civilian review board : The look on Civilian Complaint Review Board, or CCRB, member Annette Alston’s face told it all as Superior Court Judge Donald Kessler ripped all the teeth and the claws out of Newark’s CCRB. Newark’s Fraternal Order of Police, or FOP, had sued the city almost as soon as the ink dried on the law to create the board. Its attorney spoke during oral arguments Wednesday.

“The CCRB does in fact, by its very language, trample on the authority of the police director,” said Matthew Areman, attorney for the Newark FOP.

In a three-plus hour ruling, Judge Kessler agreed, saying the mayor and council can’t interfere with the day-to-day operations of the police department, they can’t transfer their power to another entity and that there’s a tried and true way to deal with a police chief not doing the job.

March 15: Attorney General Sessions Provides Further Support for Local Law Enforcement with Launch of New Collaborative Reform Initiative Technical Assistance Center

DOJ: WASHINGTON, D.C. – Attorney General Jeff Sessions today announced the launch of the Collaborative Reform Initiative Technical Assistance Center (CRI-TAC) during the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Division Midyear Conference in Nashville, Tennessee.

This follows the Attorney General’s announcement in September of 2017 that the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services would shift to better align the program to support local law enforcement consistent with the original intent of the authorizing statute. Consistent with that, the CRI-TAC brings together a coalition of the nation’s top public safety organizations under the leadership of the IACP to provide tailored technical assistance and a field driven approach to local policing agencies through a $7 million award from the Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office).

March 15: Law Enforcement Officer Safety Tool Kit:

Just a reminder of this BJA toolkit out there if you are looking for some ideas or training. Lt. Dan.

BJA: The safety of our nation’s law enforcement is a national and community concern. The U.S. Department of Justice offers resources and programs to assist law enforcement officers in keeping their communities safe and helping communities ensure the safety of their law enforcement officers.

This toolkit was developed by the U.S. Department of Justice to promote learning about officer safety and encourage the leveraging of these resources to augment state, local, and tribal efforts to promote officer safety.

March 15: GAO: Less Than Half of IG Employees Think Acting IGs Have Negative Impact on Morale

Homeland Security Today: Less than half of inspector generals and employees of the inspector generals’ offices think that working under an acting inspector general has a negative effect on staff morale, according to a GAO study.

The report examined the effects of inspector general vacancies; as of September 2017, 12 of the 64 active offices established by the Inspector General Act had vacancies.

Generally IGs, and the sample of employees surveyed, felt that this had little impact on the ability of the Offices of Inspector General to carry out their duties and responsibilities. However, there were some areas where a large minority of employees and IGs felt there could be some impact.

March 15: DPU supervisor accused of falsifying documents for training certification 

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A city supervisor in Richmond is accused of falsifying documents to make it look like he and members of his team had completed out-of-state training.

The City’s Inspector General found a Department of Public Utilities supervisor purchased fake seals and affixed them to the training certificates.

The elaborate scheme was made to look like city workers had fully attended out-of-state training.

March 14: Patrolmen’s Benevolent Union lawsuit seeks to roll back oversight authority recently granted to CCRB

NY Daily News: The NYPD watchdog has too much bite, the city’s largest police union charged in a new lawsuit.

In papers filed Tuesday in Manhattan Supreme Court, the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association asked a judge to limit the Civilian Complaint Review Board’s authority.

The 54-page suit focused on revisions to CCRB rules in January and February — including one that allows it to investigate allegations of sexual misconduct by officers against citizens. The union charges the revisions improperly interfered with NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill’s power.

March 13: Monterey County Sheriff’s Deputies investigated for possible corruption

SALINAS, Calif. – KION has learned an investigation is ongoing into Monterey County Sheriff’s Office Deputies, involving possible corruption regarding invalid search warrants.

March 13: Baltimore Mayor Pugh opposes state commission to investigate police corruption

Baltimore Sun: Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh said Wednesday she opposes a proposal to establish a state commission to investigate unanswered questions surrounding the city police department’s disgraced Gun Trace Task Force — but wants her police chief to pursue such an inquiry.

State Sen. Bill Ferguson, a Baltimore Democrat, proposed creating a special commission Tuesday to investigate proven and alleged corruption that emerged in the federal trial of the task force, including how high up the corruption may have gone and whether anyone might have ignored the officers’ actions.

March 13: Long fight over SF cops carrying Tasers heats up again

SF Chronicle: The long debate over whether San Francisco police officers should carry Tasers has ended, only to be replaced by a similarly contentious dispute over how the city should regulate use of the electroshock weapons.

A pivotal step in the rollout of the devices comes Wednesday when the Police Commission is scheduled to discuss — and possibly adopt — a Taser policy drafted by the Police Department after it convened several community working groups.

March 13: Former Monterey Park police officer found guilty of sexually assaulting women while on duty

Pasadena Star News: A former Monterey Park police officer was convicted Monday of sexually assaulting women while on duty four years ago, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said.

Jurors — after deliberating for about two days — found Israel Sanchez, 41, guilty of 14 charges: five counts of sexual battery by restraint, five counts of assault under color of authority, three counts of false imprisonment by violence and one count of soliciting a bribe, the District Attorney’s Office said.

Sanchez will be sentenced April 24 in Department 124 of the Foltz Criminal Justice Center.

March 13: Middletown police lieutenant arrested on fraud charges

New Port RI: Turnto10: Middletown, R.I. — An 18-year member of the Middletown Police Department has been arrested on more than 20 counts of fraud.

Lt. Richard Gamache was arrested at his home Monday morning on multiple charges of computer fraud and fraud.

March 12: Audits keep finding same old problems

GreenwichTime: The town voided or reduced fines on almost 68,000 parking tickets in the four-year period ending in 2016, a number described as “staggering” by an internal audit presented in May 2017.

The 28-page audit, suppressed to date by the Greenwich Police Department because of ongoing criminal investigations, is a damning indictment of the Parking Services Division, a department that is responsible for collecting and accounting for about $5.5 million in revenue each year, and that reports directly to First Selectman Peter Tesei.

March 12: More companies are using technology to monitor employees, sparking privacy concerns

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Sensors and microchips may signal a new era of a connected workforce, but some experts say these technologies also put employees’ privacy at risk.

For example, a recent patent submitted by tech giant Amazon describes an electronic wristband that could monitor employees’ tasks. Three Square Market, a tech company based in Wisconsin, started an optional microchipping program for its employees in July 2017. UPS has sensors on its delivery trucks to track the opening and closing of doors, the engine of the vehicle, and whether a seat belt is buckled.

March 11: Easing penalties on low-level offenses didn’t raise crime rate, study finds

SFGate: Crime in California increased in 2015, the year after voters reduced penalties for many drug and theft offenses. But a new study concludes the ballot measure, Proposition 47, did not cause crime to rise — findings a prosecutors’ group sharply disputes.

Researchers at UC Irvine compared 2015 crime rates in California to the rates in other states whose levels of specific crimes, like homicide, rape and larceny, had been virtually identical to California’s from 1970 through 2014.

March 10: Pentagon Managers Defend $1 Billion Price Tag of Largest Audit Ever

GovExec: The top financial managers at Pentagon this week assured senators that the nearly $1 billion audit now underway at the Defense department will be worth the price.

Defense Undersecretary and Comptroller David Norquist—under questioning by Senate Budget Committee members seeking efficiencies and defense budget reforms—said the price of $367 million in contract audit costs just in fiscal 2018 is about 1/30th of 1 percent of the Pentagon’s budget. That is “less than what Fortune 100 companies such as General Electric, Proctor & Gamble and International Business Machines Corp. pay their auditors,” he said.

March 9: Newly-Released Video Shows Two Police Helicopters’ Rotors GettingbTangled, Immediately Destroying Both. The incident occurred near Pasadena, California in 2012 and several people sustained minor injuries, but the video appears to have only just been made available.

March 9: Washington, D.C., launches ‘Crime Cards’ search tool

Statescoop: Washington, D.C., has released a new tool for exploring the its crime data, city officials announced in a presentation before the press on Friday.

The new tool is called Crime Cards and replaces a crime map originally developed by the city in 2006. The new tool was developed as responsive website to be more easily accessible on mobile devices and uses a fill-in-the-blanks format for finding the wanted information.

Users can submit queries like:

I want to explore robberies with a gun over the past 4 weeks near me within 1,000 feet.

I want to explore sex abuse without a gun dated: 1/1/2008 to 3/9/2018 citywide on a heat map.

I want to explore all property crimes over the past 2 years citywide on a ward map.

Approximately 174,000 different queries are possible, which city leaders say allow users to easily find the precise information they are interested in and view the data in charts, graphs and maps.

March 9: Former child protective investigator falsified more than half his cases in the last year, Pinellas sheriff says

A former child protective investigator with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office has been arrested after officials say more than half of the cases he investigated last year were falsified.

Steven Urban, 29, who had been working as a child protective investigator at the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office for six years, was arrested at his Largo home Thursday, according to the sheriff’s office. He faces 10 felony charges of falsifying records. Urban previously resigned from his position on Jan. 18.

March 9: Tulsa Sheriff’s Office to Pay $6 Million to Family of Unarmed Man Shot Dead The Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office agreed to pay $6 million to the family of Eric Harris, an unarmed black man killed by a white volunteer deputy in 2015, capping a case that helped fuel nationwide protests and rattled law enforcement in Oklahoma.

March 9: Lake County deputy charged with misconduct after he ‘recklessly failed’ to arrest suspect in domestic abuse, sheriff says

Chicago Tribune: Lake County Sheriff’s deputy was charged with official misconduct this week after sheriff’s officials say he failed to assist a victim of domestic abuse and arrest a man accused of striking her during an incident in Beach Park last fall.

March 9: Oakland cafe won’t serve cops

OAKLAND, Calif. (KTVU) – Cops and coffee shops usually go hand in hand, but for at least one cafe, a uniformed cop is considered persona non java.

It all started when an Oakland police sergeant stopped by Hasta Muerte Coffee in the Fruitvale District to introduce himself and to buy a cup. But the sergeant was denied service.

But Oakland City Councilmember Noel Gallo, who represents the Fruitvale District, spoke to cafe managers Thursday and confirmed it’s still the business’ unwritten policy not to serve the men and women in blue.

March 9: Forest Service must change how it investigates sexual misconduct, report says

PBS: A new report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture says the U.S. Forest Service needs to improve its process of dealing with complaints of sexual harassment and other misconduct, specifically by hiring independent investigators to handle these complaints.

The report comes a day after U.S. Forest Chief Tony Tooke resigned his position following complaints of sexual misconduct. Last week, the USDA confirmed an investigation into his alleged misconduct.

The PBS NewsHour recently published an investigation into a wider culture of sexual harassment and retaliation in the Forest Service.

Link to report:

March 9: 2020 Census: The Bureau’s Background Check Office Is Not Fully Prepared for the 2020 Census

US Dept Commerce OIG: Attached for your review is our final report on the audit of 2020 Census background check preparedness. We initiated our audit to review the Census Bureau’s revised background check policies and procedures, as well as its plan for accommodating the background check and hiring needs of the 2020 Census. Our objectives were to (1) assess the Bureau’s internal policies and procedures for conducting background checks on temporary employees, as well as any other

Census Bureau employees and (2) determine whether the Bureau has a plan in place to conduct background checks for temporary employees who will be hired during the 2020 Census tests and decennial field operations that will occur as part of the actual decennial enumeration.

March 9: Assessing police use of force data with the help of the Police Foundation

SunLightFoundation: Open police data can encourage joint problem solving, enhanced understanding, and accountability between communities and the law enforcement agencies that serve them. That’s the mission of the Police Foundation‘s Police Data Initiative (PDI) and we’re excited to join the Sunlight Foundation in 2018 to empower communities across the nation and share the importance of releasing open police use of force data as part of the 2018 U.S. City Open Data Census.

March 9: Assistant police chief forced out of Cincinnati PD

CINCINNATI (WKRC) – Assistant Police Chief David Bailey was given an ultimatum: Take a buy-out and leave, or be fired. This is according to Fraternal Order of Police President Dan Hils.  On Thursday, it was announced Bailey chose the “buy-out” option.

Sources believe that Bailey was not forced out because he was suspected of leaking the documents to the Enquirer and that there is no suggestion that Bailey is the leaker. The same sources believe that since Bailey is the lead of the division that did the audit, he is either being held responsible or he is being made a “scapegoat” depending on your perspective.

March 9: Considerations and Recommendations Regarding State and Local Officer-Involved Use-of-Force Investigations

Good resource for OIS and UOF investigators. Published in August 2017.  Lt. Dan.

GIST: The Considerations and Recommendations Regarding State and Local Officer-Involved Use-of-Force Investigations resource sets forth recommendations and considerations for municipal, county, and state law enforcement officials tasked with ensuring accountability for critical use-of-force incidents that result in death or serious bodily injury to any party. It is intended to be used prior to a critical use-of-force incident to identify and implement recommendations, address issues, and better equip agencies to effectively respond to use-of-force investigations. It is designed to follow existing laws, regulations, and statutes, and agencies should review their operating structures to ensure adherence to governing processes as they review the considerations and recommendations identified in this resource.

March 8: Community oversight panel discusses goals for Baltimore police improvements

Baltimore Sun: Mayor Catherine Pugh said Wednesday she wants a newly appointed civilian oversight panel to recommend ways to improve the relationship between the Baltimore Police Department and the public, offer cultural diversity training and better recruit officers from within the city.

Pugh named nine people to the Community Oversight Task Force this week. The task force was required by the consent decree the city reached with the U.S. Department of Justice to force the police to address widespread unconstitutional and discriminatory practices.

March 8: Audit of Compliance with Standards Governing Combined DNA Index System Activities at the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences Montgomery Laboratory, Montgomery, Alabama

The objectives of our audit were to determine if: (1) the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences Montgomery Laboratory (Laboratory) was in compliance with select National DNA Index System (NDIS) Operational Procedures; (2) the Laboratory was in compliance with certain Quality Assurance Standards (QAS) issued by the Federal Bureau of Investigation(FBI); and (3) the Laboratory’s forensic DNA profiles in Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) databases were complete, accurate, and allowable for inclusion in NDIS.

March 8: Department of Justice Announces Launch of National FOIA Portal

DOJ: Today the Department of Justice launched its new redesign of and the first iteration of the National FOIA Portal, a government-wide FOIA request portal that allows the public to submit a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to any agency from a single place.

March 8: School Officer: A Job With Many Roles and One Big Responsibility

NT Times: Nationally, there are no specific training requirements for the job, although the National Association of School Resource Officers recommends that officers complete a 40-hour course that includes emergency plans for schools, de-escalation techniques and academic work, including studying the adolescent brain. Since most officers are members of their local forces, they also receive the same shooting training their colleagues do.

March 8: In Philadelphia, a Change Meant to Increase Police Transparency Actually Does the Opposite

As it turns out, the policy reversed a decades-old practice by the city that treated closed investigations as public records, complete with the names of officers and the citizens who filed the complaints.

March 7: Independent review board to tackle case of murdered Baltimore detective

CBS: BALTIMORE — In the nearly four months since Baltimore Detective Sean Suiter was shot in the head with his own gun the day before he was to testify for a grand jury investigating police corruption, his killing has become a baffling whodunit — a real-life version of the winding TV sagas that chronicle the city’s cops, crooks and corruption.

The detective’s death while investigating a 2016 triple murder in gritty West Baltimore has been the subject of numerous TV and radio broadcasts, detailed written accounts, an aggressive manhunt and a $215,000 reward, but nobody has been charged.

With investigators led by city police coming up empty-handed, authorities say a fresh perspective is necessary as the force grapples with the fallout of an explosive federal corruption probe into a rogue unit of Baltimore detectives.

Commissioner Darryl DeSousa, who was confirmed as the city’s top police official Feb. 26, is bringing in an independent review board to examine the sensitive case in hopes outsiders can shed light on the Nov. 15 attack by an unidentified suspect.

March 7: 2 Detroit cops charged in fatal car crash

Detroit News: Two Detroit police officers have been formally charged with willful neglect of duty in connection with a high-speed chase that ended with the death of a 19-year-old man last fall.

March 6: ‘You have to have compassion.’ Lexington’s new police chief takes charge. Lexington welcomed its new police chief on Sunday with the swearing in of Lawrence Weathers, who promised a crowded Government Center that he would focus on community policing and commitment to the entire community.

Weathers, 54, started with the Lexington Police Department in 1989 and during his 27 years with the department worked in a number of units, including patrol, narcotics, internal affairs and special operations. He retired in July 2016 and became the head of law enforcement for Fayette County Public Schools.

March 5: Recent cases show Arizona officers busted for sexual misconduct

ABC  15: Over the past two years, the AZ POST has revoked certification on 11 officers, suspended six, and allowed eight to surrender their badges, all for sexual misconduct. Maybe most disturbing of all those cases, were the three times officers took advantage of a suspect or victim.

March 5:  Thanks to the Palm Beach County SO (Florida) for hosting an Introduction to Law Enforcement Inspections and Auditing course we just completed last Friday.  Great group, with a lot of great class interaction.

March 5: Former NYPD Deputy Chief Pleads Guilty To Illegally Diverting Police Resources

DOJ: Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today the guilty plea of MICHAEL HARRINGTON for misapplying police resources while serving in the New York City Police Department (“NYPD”) as, among other things, a Deputy Chief and former Executive Officer for the Chief of Department’s Office.  Specifically, HARRINGTON diverted those resources – including dispatching police officers and diverting land, sea, and air vehicles intended for the NYPD’s public service usage – for the personal benefit of Jeremy Reichberg, a private citizen, his friends, and their associates.  HARRINGTON pled guilty before U.S. District Judge Gregory H. Woods to misapplication and conversion of property belonging to a program or organization receiving federal funds.

March 3: Ex-Georgia cop guilty of telling drug dealer about FBI wiretap

AJC.COM: A former Cartersville police officer is facing federal prison after admitting he told a drug trafficker about an FBI investigation, authorities said.

March 2: 2 ex-cops indicted for allegedly stomping, hitting handcuffed man (Video)

CBS: GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — Nearly a year after two Gwinnett County police officers were fired for allegedly beating a man while he was handcuffed, a grand jury has handed down almost a dozen criminal charges against them, reports CBS Atlanta affiliate WGCL-TV.

March 2: L.A. County Sheriff’s Department Arrests Its Own Cadet on Suspicion of Arson, Stealing From Newhall ATM

KTLA: A recently hired Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department recruit has been arrested in connection with incidences of theft and arson that occurred last year in the Santa Clarita area, officials said Wednesday.

Jimenez allegedly committed the crimes weeks before he joined the Sheriff’s Department. His employment has since been terminated, officials said.

A total of $120,000 was stolen from the ATM, the Los Angeles Times reported.

March 2: Deputy gets year in jail for crash that caused brain damage

Star Tribune: WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A Florida deputy has been sentenced to a year in jail for an on-duty crash that left a man with traumatic brain damage and permanent injuries.

The Palm Beach Post reports that Deputy Brandon Hegele was sentenced Tuesday. He was convicted earlier this month of reckless driving.

Authorities say Hegele was driving 104 mph (167 kph) just before his patrol car rear-ended a SmartCar driven by 62-year-old Harry Deshommes in May 2016. The posted speed was 50 mph (80 kph), and prosecutors say Hegele ignored commands to stay back in a chase.

Records show Hegele had previously been involved in at least six crashes in his patrol car causing tens of thousands of dollars in damages.

March 2: Study: Police Use of Force is Rare, as are Significant Injuries to Suspects

 The key finding: less than one in a million cases led to a fatality.

It will be interesting to see what type of coverage this receives in the media.  This study is confirmation for what many of us law enforcement realize. Lt. Dan. The review conducted with the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center studied 1.04 million calls from three police departments over two years and found 893 cases in which suspects were subjected to force.

The report found that “among the 914 suspects affected in the 893 use-of-force incidents, 355 incurred mild injuries such as abrasions and contusions, a rate of 39 percent. But only 16 of the suspects suffered moderate or severe physical injuries, a rate of 1.8 percent. One of those 16 cases was a fatality, from a gunshot wound.”

March 2: No criminal investigation after deputy admits to falsifying arrest reports

WWTV: NEW ORLEANS – A St Tammany Parish Sheriff’s deputy, praised getting high numbers of drunk drivers off the streets, was caught fudging a DWI report last year when a video of him conducting a field sobriety test didn’t match the narrative in his supplemental police report.

Deputy Bryan “Ricky” Steinert resigned under the cloud of an internal affairs investigation, putting the prosecution of dozens of criminal cases at risk. While those cases are now being reviewed by St Tammany Parish District Attorney Warren Montgomery, Sheriff Randy Smith has not asked prosecutors to review any evidence of possible crimes committed by Steinert.

March 2: New York Detective Charged with Faking Lineup Results

NY Times: March 1: A New York police detective was arrested on Tuesday on federal perjury charges after prosecutors concluded that he had fabricated evidence in a carjacking case.

The charges against Michael Foder, 41, who had been assigned to the detective squad in the 70th precinct in central Brooklyn, are the latest sign that perjury remains an ongoing problem within the New York Police Department. Last month another detective, Kevin Desormeau, was convicted in Queens of falsely testifying about having observed a drug deal after a jury found that the detective had made up the story to cover up a dubious arrest.

In the case on Tuesday, Detective Foder is accused of doctoring a photo lineup to persuade a judge that a victim had been able to identify two suspects in a carjacking. The charges are considered particularly troubling because they involve accusations that a detective tampered with witness identifications.

March 1: New Baltimore police commissioner De Sousa describes integrity tests for officers

Baltimore Sun: “These integrity tests are going to check people,” De Sousa said Wednesday. “The good officers have nothing to worry about.”

He described the integrity tests during filming of the WJZ special “Baltimore Standing Together,” sponsored by WJZ, The Baltimore Sun and the University of Baltimore. The hourlong panel highlighted work by community leaders, police and the mayor’s office to confront Baltimore’s persistent street violence.

Since being named to the post by Mayor Catherine Pugh last month, De Sousa has announced strategies to root out corrupt cops from imposing polygraph tests, to hiring an inspector general, to rolling out the integrity tests. The department conducted only two such integrity tests last year.

March 1: Austin police union moves to kick police monitor out of investigations

MyStatesman: The Austin police union announced Tuesday it will sue the city to keep its police monitor’s office out of Austin Police Department records and investigations.

Attorneys for the Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas, a union that represents thousands of police officers across the state, filed a request for a temporary injunction Tuesday in Travis County state District Court on behalf of the Austin police union to halt the police monitor’s access to records, including internal affairs investigations, police personnel files and other investigatory materials.

Attorneys say that since a contract with the police union expired at the end of the year, the monitor’s office no longer has legal rights to those records, which were afforded to it under the previous contract.

Feb 27: Ohio State trooper fired after drug trafficking arrest (Video)

NBC: COLUMBUS (WCMH) – An Ohio State Highway Patrol trooper and five other men are facing federal charges for drug trafficking in the Delaware, Ohio area.

Arrested were Stevedore Crawford, 55,  Nicholas Glassburn, 47, of Delaware, Ohio, Carlos Carvalho, 42, of Sandusky, Ohio, William Covrett, 41, Jason Delcol, 43, Benjamin Owings,  37, of Delaware, Ohio and Stevedore Crawford, 55, of Delaware, Ohio.

According to the US Attorney’s office, all of the defendants are charged with possession with intent to distribute and distribution of controlled substances, as well as conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribution of controlled substances.

Feb 27: New Mexico city settles police brutality case for $1.4 million

USA Today: LAS CRUCES, N.M. — After deciding last year not to appeal a $1.6 million jury award given to a former Las Cruces couple, the city has settled the lawsuit for $1.4 million, according to a law firm that represented the couple..

Jillian and Andrew Beck successfully sued two police officers in U.S. District Court here over allegations of brutality and civil-rights violation

Feb 27: NYPD supports changing state law to make it illegal for cops to have sex with someone in custody

Daily News: The NYPD supports changing the law to make it a crime for a cop to have sex with someone in custody, officials said Monday.

Pols are trying to change the law so it will be automatically considered rape if a cop has sex with someone who is under arrest or detained.

“That has always been long-standing department policy that this is completely unacceptable,” legislative affairs director Oleg Chernyavsky told the City Council, adding the department would support the proposed legislation.

State law already makes it rape for a correction officer to have sex with an inmate, or for a parole officer to have sex with one of their parolees. But the same standard doesn’t apply to cops — meaning officers can argue the sex was consensual.

The push to change the law began after two Brooklyn cops, who have since quit the force, were charged with raping an 18-year-old prisoner in their police van. The victim says she was forced, but the cops claim the sex was consensual.

Councilman Mark Treyger is sponsoring a resolution asking the state to change the rape law, as well as a bill that would make such sexual conduct a separate misdemeanor under city law.

“We need strong laws in place to ensure this never happens again,” he said. “There can be no meaningful consent when you’re in the custody of a law enforcement officer, and all law enforcement must be held to the same standard.”

Feb 26: Cleveland detective failed to submit rape kits

News5CLEVELAND – Cleveland police say a detective working in the Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Unit failed to properly submit an unspecified number of sexual assault kits for testing. Police say the kits have since been admitted for testing.

An earlier version of this story said the detective failed to submit 140 rape kits, but police have since contacted us to say they are now working to verify that number.

A police spokesperson said the case remains under investigation within the Cleveland Division of Police Bureau of Integrity Control. No charges, criminal or administrative, have been filed to date. Police did not reveal the identity of the detective.


Fifth Report / February 2018

Feb 26: Former Colorado police chief gets probation for gun thefts

DENVER — A former police chief in the small Colorado town of Leadville who stole weapons from his department and its evidence room and sold them to pawn shops has been sentenced to 15 years of probation.

Feb 25: Los Angeles police officers charged with sexual assault

Los Angeles (CNN)Two Los Angeles police officers who once worked as partners patrolling the streets of Hollywood have been charged with sexually assaulting four women they encountered while on duty, prosecutors announced Wednesday.

Feb 23: Special prosecutor charges ex-Nebraska state trooper in fatal chase

LINCOLN — A special prosecutor has filed a misdemeanor motor-vehicle homicide charge against a former state trooper at the center of a controversy that roiled the Nebraska State Patrol.

Special prosecutor Joe Stecher said Wednesday that the charge stems from Tim Flick’s role in his 2016 fatal high-speed chase of an intoxicated motorist in Sheridan County. Flick, who was fired from the patrol in December for violating internal policy, also was charged with one misdemeanor count of making a false statement under oath.

A third charge filed Wednesday against Flick, careless driving, is an infraction, Stecher said. He declined to discuss his investigation or provide more details of the charges, which were filed in Sheridan County Court.

Feb 23: Vast Majority of Northern California Law Enforcement Agencies Are Not Members of Federal Joint Terrorism Task Force

The San Francisco JTTF oversees 15 Northern California counties, but an NBC Bay Area investigation found just two of those counties has any formal representation on the task force at all

Feb 22: Opioids dangers force police to abandon drug field tests

Denver Post: ST. LOUIS — Police who find suspected drugs during a traffic stop or an arrest usually pause to perform a simple task: They place some of the material in a vial filled with liquid. If the liquid turns a certain color, it’s supposed to confirm the presence of cocaine, heroin or other narcotics.

These chemical field tests have been standard procedure for decades, with officers across the country using them every day. Prosecutors rely on the results to jail suspects and file criminal charges.

But some large law enforcement agencies have recently abandoned the routine tests out of concern that officers could be exposed to opioids that can be absorbed through the skin or inhaled. Even a minute amount of the most potent drugs, such as fentanyl, can cause violent illness or death.

Police are instead sending suspected drugs to crime laboratories, which have quickly become over-burdened, delaying many cases.

“We instituted the precautions for self-preservation, frankly,” said James Shroba, the agent in charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration office in St. Louis. Agents, he said, began finding fentanyl in everything they seized, including marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamine.

Over the past 18 months, field testing has been banned by the DEA, state police in Oregon, Arizona, Michigan and Missouri, and several big-city departments, including New York and Houston.

Feb 22: USA Today names Baltimore ‘the nation’s most dangerous city’

Baltimore Sun: Baltimore’s highest-ever per capita homicide rate in 2017 also made it the deadliest big city in the country, USA Today reported Monday.

Though official data from the FBI won’t be available until later in the year, USA Today reviewed the homicide rates in the nation’s 50 largest cities and Baltimore came out on top. The 342 homicides the city experienced in 2017 were a 17 percent increase over the prior year, and translated to a rate of 56 killed per 100,000 people.

That easily outpaced New Orleans and Detroit, which both had about 40 killings per 100,000 people, according to the report.

Feb 19: Fat cops are weighing down the NYPD

NY Post: The NYPD is being dragged down by overweight cops — and the brass isn’t doing anything about the ballooning problem, police sources told The Post. Multiple NYPD sources blamed the situation on the lack of any fitness mandate once cops graduate from the Police Academy.