2015- Upcoming events –
Newsweek: A week before Ismaaiyl Brinsley shot and killed two police officers who were sitting in their squad car in Brooklyn, New York last December and then killed himself, someone posted a video online of protesters in New York City chanting, “What do we want? Dead cops! When do we want them? Now!”
Although much of the current national conversation about police tactics focuses on police-involved killings of unarmed individuals, especially people of color—leading to protests such as the one in New York—there was an increase last year in intentional killings of on-duty law enforcement officers, and new research sheds light on who is responsible.
Wired.com: When most people hear the word “criminal,” they probably picture some dim-witted thug. But security expert Marc Goodman has been fighting crime for more than 20 years, and he’s learned the hard way that crime is increasingly going high-tech, leaving law enforcement struggling to keep up. He outlines the challenges in his new book Future Crimes: Everything is Connected, Everyone is Vulnerable, and What We Can Do About It.
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — State legislators around the country are pushing to make it much harder for the public to obtain police officer body camera videos, undermining their promise as a tool people can use to hold law enforcement accountable.
Lawmakers in at least 15 states have introduced bills to exempt video recordings of police encounters with citizens from state public records laws, or to limit what can be made public.
Their stated motive: preserving the privacy of people being videotaped, and saving considerable time and money that would need to be spent on public information requests as the technology quickly becomes widely used.
DOJ News: A Maryland man was charged today in the District of Columbia with crimes arising out of his tampering with substantial quantities of drug evidence while working as a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), announced U.S. Attorney Zane David Memeger of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. The 64-count information
charges Matthew Lowry with 20 counts of obstruction of justice, 18 counts of falsification of records, 13 counts of conversion of property, and 13 counts of possession of heroin.
Findings of the audit include chronic understaffing and incomplete analysis of available information by the Internal Affairs Bureau. Auditor Dennis Gallagher’s report also criticizes the Denver Department of Safety, which oversees the Sheriff Department, Fire Department and the Police Department.
LA Times: The use of body cameras by San Diego police has led to fewer complaints by residents and less use of force by officers, according to a city report released Wednesday. Complaints have fallen 40.5% and use of “personal body” force by officers has been reduced by 46.5% and use of tear gas by 30.5%, according to the report developed by the Police Department for the City Council’s Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods Committee.
Microsoft: In the United States it’s no longer a question of “if” police departments will adopt cameras to make a record of police activity, but when, says Steve Ward, founder of VIEVU, a leading manufacturer of secure video cameras for law enforcement.
VIEVU is partnering with Microsoft “to remove much of the heavy lifting of storing and managing video by providing a one-click option for securely using the Microsoft Azure Government cloud,” Ward writes in a guest post on the Microsoft on Government Blog.
Azure Government provides a cost-effective, flexible option for storing and managing data, with advanced security and redundant backup, Ward says.
Washington Post: The question we should be asking isn’t whether or not the police decision to shoot Harrison at that moment was justified. The question we should be asking is whether the interaction ever should have reached that moment. Or, to go back to our more basic question: Was this shooting necessary?
PHOENIX (AP) — An Arizona sheriff known for immigration crackdowns and a defiant political style has offered to publicly apologize and fork out money from his own pocket for his acknowledged violation of a court order in a racial-profiling case that barred his immigration patrols.
LOS ANGELES (KABC) — An FBI special agent is under criminal investigation after allegedly stealing thousands of dollars in cash while working cases as part of a Riverside-based drug task force.
Govt. Tech: Co-founder Sarah Leary talks about what’s coming for her rapidly growing social media platform that’s valued at more than $1 billion.
The platform’s social network musters 5 million exchanged messages per day from more than 53,000 neighborhoods nationwide. Nextdoor is also used by nearly 700 jurisdictions for citizen communication through its government dashboard, Nextdoor for Public Agencies.
The announcement of additional acoustic detectors that use triangulation to locate potential shooting locations comes at a time this year when shootings have climbed.
This is not related to law enforcement, but I thought some of you might find it interesting. Lt. Dan
Govt. Tech: A new study from Kent State University found that the relationship between cellphone use and grade point average is “statistically significant and negative.”
Two cops who used an NYPD server to change a Wikipedia page on Eric Garner won’t be punished, top cop Bill Bratton said Monday.
“I don’t anticipate any punishment, being quite frank with you, other than the admonishment advising them on department policy,” Bratton said Monday of the two cops, who changed details on the page to put the officers involved in a better light.
Internet use for department members is regulated on a three-tier system, in which higher ranks have access to more sites, Bratton said.
The two officers involved did not have clearance to access the sites, he said.
In a rapidly unfolding scandal, San Francisco law enforcement officials are pledging to review the case work of four city police officers who are accused of sending a series of racist and homophobic text messages.
A published report says the San Francisco Police Department is also investigating at least 10 other officers in connection with the sharing of offensive text messages.
March 17, 2015, NBC: Federal investigators looking into recent officer misconduct within the San Diego Police Department found officers were not held accountable and once they broke the rules, the misconduct continued undetected for years.
The 83-page U.S. Department of Justice audit was released for the first time Tuesday and included 40 recommendations to handle gaps in policies and practices in regards to handling misconduct investigations and hiring practices.
Link to report: http://media.nbcbayarea.com/documents/cops-w0756-pub.pdf
March 16, 2015, Audit cites lack of training, lack of oversight and lack of accountability, particularly in the detective division.
March 16, 2015, San Jose Inside: In 2012, a city audit found that San Jose police working off-duty security jobs lacked accountability and, in some cases, abused the system. One officer allegedly double-billed two school districts, according to the report by City Auditor Sharon Erickson, who handed down a list of recommendations to get the program back in line.
Three years after Erickson called for “urgent reform and a cultural change,” more than 80 percent of those recommendations have yet to be implemented.
March 16, 2015, Authorities issued an arrest warrant for murder for a rookie LAPD officer in connection with a shooting in Pomona, police announced Monday.
Henry Solis, 27, who has been a probationary officer at the Los Angeles Police Department’s Devonshire Division in the San Fernando Valley since December, is a suspect in the fatal shooting of a man in a Pomona parking lot near an area packed with popular bars and nightclubs.
March 16, 2015, NBC: A Los Angeles police officer was arrested after U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the U.S.-Mexico border allegedly found someone hiding in the officer’s car when they stopped him for questioning Saturday night, law enforcement sources confirmed to the NBC News Investigative Unit.
March 15, 2015, Miami Herald: JACKSONVILLE. A statewide audit by Florida newspapers shows most local and state agencies respond efficiently — and in some cases thoroughly — to simple public records requests, though the cost for similar records varied widely and some agencies failed to respond at all.
March 11, 2015, GAO.GOV: GAO’s ongoing work has found that the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) has made progress carrying out the responsibilities established in the 2012 Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act (the 2012 act) but lacks certain elements of effective internal controls.
Link to report: http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/668933.pdf
March 12, 2015, WRIC: NEW YORK – The Joyful Heart Foundation, one of the nation’s leading advocacy organizations working toward nationwide rape kit reform, today welcomed the U.S. Department of Justice’s release of two solicitations for funding to address the growing backlog of sexual assault kits at law enforcement agencies.
This program, funded through a first-of-its-kind federal investment in the FY15 Commerce, Justice and Science spending bill last year, will provide local communities resources through the Bureau of Justice Assistance to support multidisciplinary community response teams engaged in the comprehensive reform of jurisdictions’ approaches to sexual assault cases. This includes testing backlogged kits; investigating and prosecuting cases connected to the backlog; and addressing the need for victim notification and re-engagement with the criminal justice system.
The solicitations can be found HERE: https://www.bja.gov/Funding/15SAKIsol.pdf
March 10, 2015, Denver Post: During a six-month trial run for body cameras in the Denver Police Department, only about one out of every four use-of-force incidents involving officers was recorded.
March 13, 2015, LEO Affairs: Two police cars belonging to the Broward and Miami-Dade counties were set on fire early Friday morning while the officers were inside their northeast Miami-Dade county homes. The fires happened a few blocks away from each other and Miami-Dade Fire Rescue responded at about 5 a.m.
March 14, 2015, CNN Video
March 13, 2015, TV11: LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV)- A year after Mayor Mark Stodola announced a crime prevention task force, it has now come to fruition. But, some community activists are concerned that some voices are missing.
March 13, 2015, Pew Research: Crime consistently ranks as one of the most followed and discussed topics by the public, and it receives more attention in local news media than almost any other subject. A recent Pew Research Center report reinforces these findings but also suggests that certain groups of residents pay closer attention to local crime than others in the three cities studied. A difference that particularly stands out is between racial and ethnic groups.
March 13, 2015, Sun-Sentinel: Hollywood had received a conditional accreditation last year and was in the process of seeking a second extension. But the problem-plagued evidence room proved to be a stumbling block, Fernandez said.
The chief blames a lack of oversight under previous administrations. Among the more high-profile problems were forgotten rape kits that were never processed and an estimated $170,000 in cash that went missing from the evidence vault. But there were other issues that didn’t make headlines.
“A property unit of our size should have 50,000 pieces of evidence,” Fernandez said. “We have more than 120,000. We also had evidence we could not find. We had 10,000 pieces of missing evidence.”
March 13, 2015, WKYT: FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) – He’s launching an investigation into unprocessed rape kits. State Auditor Adam Edelen says the kits are piling up on shelves, and preventing prosecutors from doing their jobs. They’ll start by auditing law enforcement agencies to figure out just how many kits need to be tested.
March 13, 2015, SALINAS, Calif. – Voices were strong and opinions were passionate Thursday when more 50 people showed up at Sherwood Hall in Salinas for a community meeting hosted by the U.S. Department of Justice.
“We will look at use of force, every aspect of it. Training, policy, investigation, accountability,” said Ron Davis with the D.O.J.
Davis is from the D.O.J.’s Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS). He took a lot of heat while standing in front of community members, explaining his plan to rebuild trust in Salinas. Police Chief Kelly McMillin, who personally asked the D.O.J. to help, hopes the community will give them a chance to try.
March 13, 2015, Fleet sales are an important part of U.S. automakers’ bottom lines, and none have more cachet or higher visibility than a contract with a law enforcement agency.
Ford sold law enforcement agencies about 20,000 units of its Interceptor Utility, which is based on its popular Explorer sport utility vehicle, and 10,000 police-issue Taurus full-size sedans in 2014.
March 13, 2015, Cleveland.com: With more than 9,200 rape kits submitted for testing statewide (Ohio), questions about the adequacy of past police investigations are likely to come up again and again – not only for jurors, but also for judges being asked to decide whether the prosecutions and convictions are fair.
March 13, 2015, In New Haven, Conn., and across the nation, cities give community policing another try as tensions rise.
March 11, 2015, BBC News: On a military base in Quantico, Virginia, the FBI keeps a collection of over 7,000 guns, including weapons used by John Dillinger and other famous American gangsters.
But these weapons aren’t used in the field to prevent crime. Instead, they’re part of a massive library used to help solve crimes.
March 11, 2015, FBI: March 14th, marks the 65th Anniversary of the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives Program. In 1949, a reporter for the International News Service (the predecessor to United Press International) approached the FBI and asked about writing a story about the “toughest guys” being sought by the FBI at the time. The Bureau provided the names and descriptions of 10 fugitives to the reporter. The resulting feature became a major story and garnered national attention. In response to the overwhelming public interest, on March 14, 1950, then Director J. Edgar Hoover inaugurated the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives program.
March 13, 2015, WWLP: SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Springfield Police Commissioner John Barbieri has initiated an inquiry into the police departments evidence room after money from criminal cases disappeared.
According to a news release from Commissioner Barbieri, the City’s Department of Internal Audit will review how evidence is logged in, tagged, and inventoried. Auditors will review other law enforcement agencies to help Springfield PD create better practices when handling evidence.
March 13, 2015, Police One: The decision by Officer Wilson to use deadly force — at the moment he made that decision — is entirely unrelated to any pre-existing police culture in Ferguson.
Today, I am announcing three significant new steps we are taking as part of this exciting initiative. First, we have selected six cities to serve as pilot sites for innovative strategies to strengthen bonds between police and citizens they serve: Birmingham, Alabama; Stockton, California; Gary, Indiana; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and Fort Worth, Texas. By helping to develop programs that serve their own diverse experiences, these cities will stand on the leading edge of our effort to confront pressing issues in communities across the country.
Second, we have launched a new online resource, available at trustandjustice.org, which will advance cutting-edge research and information about best practices and trust-building policy.
Third, we’re offering training, mentoring, expert consultations, and assistance on racial reconciliation directly to police departments and communities across America through the Office of Justice Programs’ Diagnostic Center.
March 13, 2015, KOB: Sheriff’s deputy arrested on drug charge Sandoval is accused of accepting cash last month for escorting an undercover officer with a vehicle that was carrying cocaine from Colfax County to the New Mexico-Colorado state line.
March 12, 2015, WBALTV: ANNAPOLIS, Md. —To combat the state’s heroin epidemic, a number of local governments are training their police officers on how to administer Naloxone, but unlike first responders, state law doesn’t give police civil immunity for helping those who need it.
March 11, 2015: LOS ANGELES AP: – Lawmakers sent a letter on Wednesday to the Justice Department saying new guidelines restricting federal law enforcement agencies from racial profiling don’t go far enough.
March 11, 2015, King5: SEATTLE — Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole has promoted two assistant chiefs within the department and looked outside for two others in a major overhaul of her command staff. The changes were announced Wednesday.
March 11, 2015, King5: SEATTLE — Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole announced her new team of assistant chiefs Wednesday in a major shake-up of department leadership.
O’Toole also announced she has lured Amazon executive Greg Russell to take the role of Chief Information Officer.
March 11, 2015, WTOP: WASHINGTON — Major problems with D.C.’s speed camera program were exposed by financial projections, and now the police department is moving to hire an independent auditor to solve the camera problems.
At a D.C. Council oversight hearing Tuesday, Police Chief Cathy Lanier said the Metropolitan Police Department finalized a request for proposals for an independent auditor to review the entire speed camera program from top to bottom.
March 12, 2015, Chicago Business: A recent study finds that a new Chicago Police Department training program has improved officers’ attitudes toward the community, as the city’s effort to lower crime looms as an issue in the race for mayor.
March 11, 2015, USA Today: Embattled Ferguson, Mo., Police Chief Thomas Jackson, whose department received scathing criticism from the Justice Department for racially biased policing, will resign March 19, city officials said Wednesday.
March 11, 2015, (CNN)—A Georgia police chief who said he accidentally shot and seriously injured his wife while the couple were sleeping in bed has resigned, the Peachtree City Police Department said Wednesday.
William McCollom stepped down as chief of police in Peachtree City nearly a week after a prosecutor announced that although the New Year’s Day shooting appeared accidental, McCollom could eventually face a misdemeanor charge accusing him of recklessly taking a gun to bed after drinking alcohol and taking sleeping medication.
March 11, 2015, Washington Post: The Obama administration is investigating allegations that two senior Secret Service agents, including a top member of the president’s protective detail, drove a government car into White House security barricades after drinking at a late-night party last week, an agency official said Wednesday.
Officers on duty who witnessed the March 4 incident wanted to arrest the agents and conduct sobriety tests, according to a current and a former government official familiar with the incident. But the officers were ordered by a supervisor on duty that night to let the agents go home
March 10, 2015, (CNN) When an officer kills an unarmed suspect, the question arises time and again: Can a police department investigate a high-stakes case involving one of its own, without bias?
For Wisconsin residents decrying the death of unarmed teen Tony Robinson, the question isn’t even an issue.
“The investigation is being conducted by the state. We have a new law here in Wisconsin where departments are no longer conducting their own internal investigations for officer-involved shootings,” Madison Mayor Paul Soglin said.
In fact, Wisconsin is one of only two states with such legislation. The other is Connecticut.
March 10, 2015, AP: FERGUSON, Mo. – The Ferguson City Council on Tuesday evening unanimously approved a decision to part ways with City Manager John Shaw following a scathing Justice Department report that already has led to a Missouri appeals court judge being tapped to overhaul the local court system.
March 10, 2015, Engadget: The Justice Department’s newest electronic dragnet–plane-mounted “dirtboxes” that can slurp thousands of cellular phone ID’s from the air — was originally developed by the CIA to hunt terrorists in the Middle East, The Wall Street Journal reports. Now however, it’s being used domestically to track American citizens. That’s not good.
March 9, 2015, Star Tribune: MADISON, Wis. — Authorities in Wisconsin say a likely cyberattack has affected the city of Madison’s website and email system, as well as computers used by law enforcement countywide.
Dane County Emergency Management said the city began experiencing a high volume of Internet activity consistent with an outside attack late Monday.
The apparent attack comes three days after a Madison police officer on Friday shot and killed an unarmed 19-year-old.
March 10, 2015, Chicago Tribune: Testing of thousands of rape evidence kits that sat ignored for years in Memphis has resulted in the identification of 16 people suspected of raping multiple victims, an investigator said Monday..
Memphis, Houston, Cleveland and Detroit are among the U.S. cities working to reduce a backlog of thousands of untested rape kits, with hopes that evidence collected from the kits could lead to prosecution of more sexual assault cases. Rape victims have sued the city of Memphis, alleging that the failure to test some 12,000 kits has allowed too many rapists to escape prosecution.
March 10, 2015, Critics question if open-source ‘over-redaction’ software violates privacy but pilot program is first step in department’s effort to recapture public’s trust.
March 9, 2015, Detroit Free Press: The Federal Aviation Administration has granted Michigan State Police permission to fly a drone anywhere in the state for law enforcement purposes.
The FAA gave the greenlight after a two-day visit to Michigan last month to review the program and safety procedures.
March 10, 2015, Daily News: In an effort to reduce distracted driving, Los Angeles County sheriff’s officials have implemented a new policy that significantly curbs the use of in-car computers, authorities said.
The policy, which was formalized late last month, contains the department’s first explicit restrictions on such devices and comes a little more than a year after sheriff’s Deputy Andrew Wood fatally struck cyclist Milton Olin Jr. on Mulholland Highway in Calabasas while typing on his in-car computer.
March 9, 2015, AP: When law enforcement officers from around the U.S. visit the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles for training these days, they are faced with a choice between entering a door marked “prejudiced” and another marked “unprejudiced.”
While most officers pick the “prejudiced” door, some don’t and quickly discover that the “unprejudiced” door is locked — a not-so-subtle reminder that no one is unbiased.
It’s an early lesson officers receive when they show up at the center’s Museum of Tolerance for instruction that includes implicit bias training, which aims to help them recognize and understand how their unconscious biases can impact the way they do their jobs.
The training is gaining more traction among police departments in dozens of cities, including Philadelphia and Dallas, especially after recent protests over the killings of black men by white officers sparked a debate about the role race plays in policing.
March 9, 2015, King5: A much anticipated shakeup in the top ranks of the Seattle Police Department became official Monday morning.
Sources tell KING 5 that all four assistant chiefs were notified that they are being demoted. Deputy Chief Carmen Best will retain her position and is not affected by the shakeup.
March 9, 2015, A Ferguson municipal court judge, named in a scathing U.S Justice Department report — which showed a pattern of bias in the city’s police force and courts — was replaced Monday by a state judge, according to the Missouri Supreme Court.
March 6, 2015, NY Times: WASHINGTON — Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. vowed a firm response on Friday to what he called “appalling” racial misconduct by law enforcement officials in Ferguson, Mo., suggesting he was prepared to seek the dismantling of the police force there if necessary.
March 4, 2015, LA Times: Six Whittier police officers are suing the city, saying they faced retaliation when they complained and refused to meet alleged ticket and arrest quotas.
March 6, 2015, Miami Herald: WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama said the type of racial discrimination found in Ferguson, Missouri, is not unique to that police department, and he cast law enforcement reform as a chief struggle for today’s civil rights movement.
March 6, 2015, The Seattle Police chief is expected to announce major changes in her top command staff soon. Sources tell KING 5 that all four assistant chiefs are bracing for demotions, but Deputy Chief Carmen Best will not be affected by the shakeup.
The changes would not come as a surprise to close observers of the department. In December, Chief Kathleen O’Toole announced she would be opening up the five assistant chief jobs, which meant the four men and one woman holding those positions at the time were required to re-apply for the positions.
March 6, 2015, CNN: Police officers Capt. Rick Henke and Sgt. William Mudd resigned Thursday over the emails discovered during the U.S. Department of Justice investigation of racial prejudice in the city’s police and judicial system, city spokesman Jeff Small said on Friday, citing the city attorney.
March 8, 2015, Govt Tech: Another signature achievement of the Obama Administration – the First Responder Network Authority – appears headed down a path similar to the original Healthcare.gov. Can officials fix it?
March 8, 2015, MSN: Hui Wang has seen the nature of online fraud change a lot in the 11 years she’s been at PayPal. In fact, a continuous evolution of methods is kind of the nature of cybercrime. As the good guys catch onto one approach, the bad guys try to avoid detection by using another.
March 6, 2015, Washington Post: D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser has commissioned an audit of the city’s new crime lab after forensic experts hired by the U.S. Attorney’s Office said they discovered errors in some of the lab’s DNA analyses, the mayor’s office said Friday.
March 5, 2015, PBS: The investigation of the Ferguson police department is one outcome of a federal law, passed in the wake of a notorious incident of police violence: the 1991 case of Rodney King, a black man who was beaten by Los Angeles police after being stopped for speeding. Three years later, Congress passed the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, which included a provision that gave the Justice Department unprecedented power to investigate law enforcement agencies for systemic problems — such as use of excessive force, or racial profiling — and force them to implement reforms.
March 5, 2015, KOCO.com: OKLAHOMA CITY —Oklahoma City citizens can now receive information from the city government through the social networking app Nextdoor. Nextdoor is an app that neighborhoods can use to disseminate information privately within a neighborhood.
March 5, 2015, Tucson.com: Tucson Police Department Chief Roberto Villaseñor will be part of a new federal advisory panel to track Customs and Border Protection’s progress in use-of-force incidents, the agency said Tuesday.
The Justice Department announced the findings of its two civil rights investigations related to Ferguson, Missouri, today.
- The Justice Department found that the Ferguson Police Department (FPD) engaged in a pattern or practice of conduct that violates the First, Fourth, and 14th Amendments of the Constitution.
- The Justice Department also announced that the evidence examined in its independent, federal investigation into the fatal shooting of Michael Brown does not support federal civil rights charges against Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson.
The department found that the FPD has a pattern or practice of:
- Conducting stops without reasonable suspicion and arrests without probable cause in violation of the Fourth Amendment;
- Interfering with the right to free expression in violation of the First Amendment; and
- Using unreasonable force in violation of the Fourth Amendment.
The department found that Ferguson Municipal Court has a pattern or practice of:
- Focusing on revenue over public safety, leading to court practices that violate the 14th Amendment’s due process and equal protection requirements.
- Court practices exacerbating the harm of Ferguson’s unconstitutional police practices and imposing particular hardship upon Ferguson’s most vulnerable residents, especially upon those living in or near poverty. Minor offenses can generate crippling debts, result in jail time because of an inability to pay and result in the loss of a driver’s license, employment, or housing.
The department found a pattern or practice of racial bias in both the FPD and municipal court:
- The harms of Ferguson’s police and court practices are borne disproportionately by African Americans and that this disproportionate impact is avoidable.
- Ferguson’s harmful court and police practices are due, at least in part, to intentional discrimination, as demonstrated by direct evidence of racial bias and stereotyping about African Americans by certain Ferguson police and municipal court officials.
The findings are laid out in a 100-page report that discusses the evidence and what remedies should be implemented to end the pattern or practice. The findings include two sets of recommendations, 26 in total, that the Justice Department believes are necessary to correct the unconstitutional FPD and Ferguson Municipal Court practices. The recommendations include: changing policing and court practices so that they are based on public safety instead of revenue; improving training and oversight; changing practices to reduce bias, and; ending an overreliance on arrest warrants as a means of collecting fines.
March 4, 2015, Oregonlive: The Portland Police Bureau can be quick to respond to high-profile shootings or deaths in custody with policy changes and immediate training, but the training falls off over time, according to a city audit released Tuesday.
The audit also found that few officers during an annual refresher course last year could correctly describe the bureau’s current policy on use of force.
Link to audit report:
March 3, 2015, NBC San Diego: With body cameras on their deputies, the letter said, the department would take a technological leap forward and the cameras would also “help promote a perceived legitimacy and a sense of procedural justice that communities expect from their law enforcement agencies.”
In that letter, the sheriff’s department said there would be no fiscal impact associated with the request because the SDSO would come back to them with a recommendation for funding before receiving the cameras.
March 4, 2015, Post-Gazette: When Pittsburgh Police Chief Cameron McLay was hired in September, he had two big tasks: rebuild a fraying relationship between the bureau and heavily policed communities and restore his officers’ flagging morale.
Both those goals were advanced Tuesday at a promotion ceremony that also included an announcement that the bureau will add a new Office of Professional Standards, Mayor Bill Peduto said.
I don’t post videos often, but I found this one to be pretty funny, hope you enjoy it. Lt. Dan
March 3, 2015, Mayor said Cleveland’s response was poorly worded and offensive, and the city will modify the wording of its defense
March 3, 2015, USA Today: A technology shortfall can lead to tragic results, a national investigation shows.
March 3, 2015, Washington Post: A defendants defense team detected investigators’ use of a secret surveillance tool, one that raises significant privacy concerns. In an unprecedented move, a state judge ordered the police to show the device — a cell-tower simulator sometimes called a StingRay — to the attorneys. How the stingray works…….
March 2, 2015, WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama said Monday the deaths of unarmed black men in Missouri and New York show that law enforcement needs to change practices to build trust in minority communities, as a White House task force called for independent, outside investigations when police use deadly force.
Link to interim report:
March 2, 2015, (CNN)—Pleading innocence, immunity and ignorance, the city of Cleveland responded to a wrongful death lawsuit filed by Tamir Rice’s family by saying the 12-year-old’s death was his own fault.
March 2, 2015, (Reuters) – A Florida Islamic group announced on Monday it has filed a formal notice with the FBI that it plans to sue the agency for $30 million in the death of Ibragim Todashev, a friend of one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects.
Todashev, 27, a Muslim Chechen immigrant, was killed in an Orlando apartment in May 2013 during FBI questioning about his links with the Boston suspects. The FBI said the agent shot Todashev after he attacked him.
March 1, 2015, Rising concern that background checks are being used to systematically exclude applicants with criminal records is fueling a national “ban the box” movement to improve their chances. The name refers to the box that job applicants are sometimes required to check if they have been convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor. Fourteen states and several dozen cities have passed laws, mostly in recent years, that generally require employers to postpone background checks until the later stages of the hiring process.
February 19, 2015, DefenseOne: Officials at the departments of Justice and Homeland Security typically expect employees’ smartphones will be bugged when they travel overseas. So, they are experimenting with various ways to neutralize foreign spy gear.
March 1, 2015, NY Times: WASHINGTON — The Justice Department has nearly completed a highly critical report accusing the police in Ferguson, Mo., of making discriminatory traffic stops of African-Americans that created years of racial animosity leading up to an officer’s shooting of a black teenager last summer, law enforcement officials said.
March 1, 2015, Govt. Tech: A panel of social media practitioners from the public and private sectors gathered to highlight why social media is vital for government.
March 2, 2015, wsj.com: A Los Angeles police shooting of an unarmed homeless man may serve as an early test of how video from officer-worn cameras affects the investigation and public perception of such deadly encounters.
At a Monday news conference, Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck said two of the officers on the scene Sunday afternoon were wearing cameras, and that the footage captured provides a “unique perspective that we believe will be crucial in determining the propriety of the officer’s actions.”
March 2, 2015, Baltimore Sun: The Baltimore Police Department is fighting the release of a secret audit that found a number of officers had misrepresented their educational credentials and wrongly received pay benefits as a result, new court filings show..
The audit was performed in April 2014 after an anonymous tip to Police Commissioner Anthony W. Batts revealed that a high-ranking commander had used a bogus degree from a diploma mill to earn a pay bonus. The commander, Lt. Col. Clifton McWhite, resigned and was later criminally charged with theft.
March 1, 2015, Seattle Times: Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole has spent much of her first eight months seeing that federally mandated reforms are carried out while still balancing all the other duties the public expects of the department.
March 2015, D Magazine: The new reports, though, featured no narrative. Seven months later, they still don’t.
February 28, 2015, LA Times: The San Diego Police Department is trying to assess whether its officers are guilty of racial profiling in traffic stops, as some community activists allege..
Statistics released this week suggest that black and Latino drivers are more likely to be pulled over than white drivers, and once stopped are more likely to be searched than white drivers who have been stopped.
February 25, 2015, Fox2: ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – The best police officers don`t just fight crime, they try to stop it before it strikes. That might mean checking on something suspicious that`s not part of a regular call. Fox Files investigator Chris Hayes found the pre-emptive strikes dropped dramatically last year in St. Louis City.
The numbers are down so much, some are asking if that’s why the entire second floor of a St. Louis jail is empty. Police Chief Sam Dotson warns not to jump to the conclusion that this is bad.
February 25, 2015, LA Times: Less than four months after California voters approved Proposition 47, the landmark law is already having significant effects on Los Angeles County’s criminal justice system..
A new report by the county chief executive office attempts to measure the effects of the law, which downgrades some drug and theft felonies to misdemeanors, though officials said it’s still far too early to draw final conclusions.
February 28, 2015, Sun-Sentinel: Chief Johnson was fired by the city of Miami Gardens. Johnson took the helm shortly after the owner of 207 Quickstop convenience store filed a lawsuit claiming Miami Gardens officers habitually harassed his minority employees and customers.
February 28, 2015, Slate: When a local prosecutor sends a convicted felon to prison, the cost of keeping him locked up—an average of $31,286 per year—is paid for entirely by the state, not the county where the prosecutor holds office. The problem with this setup, some argue, is that prosecutors end up enjoying a “correctional free lunch,” meaning they can be extremely aggressive in their charging decisions without having to worry about how much it will cost the local taxpayers who elected them. If prosecutors were forced to take the cost of incarceration into account, the theory goes, there might not be 1.36 million people in America’s state prisons.
Ball, the author, is the first to admit his proposal is not likely to be enacted, and would involve a radical rethinking of criminal justice funding. And yet, “People have told me this idea is crazy, but my response to them is look around, have you noticed the system we have now?
February 28, 2015, Washington Post: In Virginia individuals can obtain police powers using a little-known provision of state law that allows private citizens to petition the courts for the authority to carry a gun, display a badge and make arrests. The number of “special conservators of the peace” — or SCOPs, as they are known — has doubled in Virginia over the past decade to roughly 750, according to state records.
The growth is mirrored nationally in the ranks of private police, who increasingly patrol corporate campuses, neighborhoods and museums as the demand for private security has increased and police services have been cut in some places.
The trend has raised concerns in Virginia and elsewhere, because these armed officers often receive a small fraction of the training and oversight of their municipal counterparts. Arrests of private police officers and incidents involving SCOPs overstepping their authority have also raised concerns.
In case you have not seen this website, here is the link. Their site includes links to social media and news articles regarding listed incidents. Their site description is listed below. LT. Dan.
Corporate news reports of people killed by nonmilitary law enforcement officers, whether in the line of duty or not, and regardless of reason or method. Inclusion implies neither wrongdoing nor justification on the part of the person killed or the officer involved. The post merely documents the occurrence of a death. Est. May 1, 2013
February 26, 2015, NY Times: New York City has reached a contract agreement with the sergeants’ union, the latest signpost in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s bid to move beyond the police conflict that recently consumed his administration.
The tentative contract with the Sergeants Benevolent Association grants an 11 percent wage increase over seven years, retroactive to 2011, with a series of other benefits. It leaves the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association as the only police union without a new agreement.
February 28, 2015, The News Star: The National Fraternal Order of Police wants violence against police officers that’s motivated by anti-police bias to be added to the Congressional hate crimes law.
F.O.P. National President Chuck Canterbury recently told USA Today the organization that represents 330,000 members in every region of the country will ask Congress to update the hate crime statute to better protect the men and women in blue.
February 27, 2015, Huffington Post: DENVER (AP) — An appeals court added Colorado to the list of states that can allow criminal suspects to search victims’ homes to bolster their defense — a move that raised concerns among prosecutors and victims’ advocates.
Courts have allowed defendants to get confidential records and have victims ordered to undergo psychological evaluations, and defense attorneys regularly seek evidence from cellphones, computers and other property. The appeals court said it found no ruling or state law specifically addressing access to a private home.
Defendants would have to show that the search would yield evidence that is “relevant, material and necessary to his defense,” according to the ruling. Courts would have to balance that justification against the resident’s privacy interests.
February 28, 2015, Delaware on line: With some Wilmington neighborhoods besieged by gunmen and downtown workers increasingly worried about personal safety, Delaware Supreme Court Chief Justice Leo E. Strine Jr. thinks the three major police forces in northern Delaware should become one.
The notion of merging city, state and New Castle County police into a single upstate unit makes perfect sense to Strine, the most prominent official in Delaware ever to advocate for an idea that has been discussed quietly for years, but never seen a concerted effort to make it a reality.
February 28, 2015, ABC: Hundreds of people are asking Cleveland to reopen police mini-stations as leaders consider reforms for the city’s police department.
The Northeast Ohio Media Group reports ( http://bit.ly/18tHB7D ) more than 1,500 people have signed a petition demanding the mini-stations’ return.
The city established the stations at community centers in the 1990s to connect officers and residents, but closed them in 2005.
Councilwoman Dona Brady has said staffing the mini-stations might have prevented the November fatal police shooting of 12-year-old Tamir Rice, who was carrying a pellet gun when he was shot outside a recreation center that was once home to a mini-station.
February 28, 2015, USA Today: Activists in Chicago gathered Saturday for a protest and march against alleged “black sites” in the city where police supposedly hold suspects and witnesses for long periods without public records and access to lawyers.
The Chicago Police Department has denied The Guardian’s reporting, saying there is nothing inappropriate happening at Homan Square.
February 27, 2105, LEO: Councilman Dromm became concerned about the issue when a constituent complained that police had lost a criminal report she made about being assaulted. The report had been transcribed on a typewriter and only one copy was made.
Gizmodo reported that all 77 precincts in New York still have typewriters. Supposedly, the reason they keep the archaic devices is because some forms have not been digitized. For residents, it creates an inconvenience as they cannot fill out forms online for things like a sound permit for an outdoor gathering. Instead they have to go to their local precinct and have the information typed onto a form the old-fashioned way.
February 26, 2015, Time: Suspect descriptors will now only be included on a case-by-case basis. The University of Minnesota will no longer include vague racial descriptions in e-mailed campus wide crime alerts, after pressure from student groups.
February 25, 2015, USA Today: WASHINGTON — President Obama is throwing his support behind a bipartisan proposal to change the nation’s sentencing laws by cutting many mandatory minimum sentences in half.
That commitment came out of a meeting with 16 members of Congress at the White House Tuesday night, called by the president to gather their ideas on how to overhaul the criminal justice system.
February 26, 2015, Govt Tech: The city, which has the largest deployment of police body cameras in the world, will use a data storage system that meets the FBI’s standards for security.
Oakland is piloting the VERIPATROL platform for the Microsoft Azure Government cloud. Oakland retains video from its body-worn cameras on an in-house system for five years, but recently found the volume of video being stored was overwhelming its servers. VIEVU and Microsoft recently collaborated to make a CJIS-capable version of VIEVU’s VERIPATROL platform for the Microsoft Azure Government cloud.
As you may recall, we posted several articles recently regarding Seattle’s hack a thon, which resulted in these changes, interesting reading, with potential implications for other agencies. Lt. Dan.
February 27, 2015, engadgeit.com: Seattle’s officer-worn camera footage is making its way online, but if you were hoping for anything Cops-like you’re likely to be disappointed. In accordance with privacy measures, faces aren’t the only parts of a shot that are blurred out — most of the time it’s the entire frame, and audio’s been scrubbed as well. Seattle’s police department’s using methods recommended by volunteer hacker Tim Clemans, and according to SPD Blotter, the redacting process only took half-a-day to process four hours of raw video. Comparatively, the force’s old methods would take upwards of a 60 minutes to obfuscate a single minute of footage.
As of now there’re a handful of clips ranging from 4-to-30 minutes in length, with a majority of SPD BodyWornVideo’s uploads coming from last month’s Martin Luther King Day protests. The plan, according to The Seattle Times, is for the tools to get further refinements and then distribute them, for free, to other law enforcement agencies — maybe even yours.
February 27, 2015, WASHINGTON (CNN) —Retiring U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is pushing back against critics who say he was too aggressive in the early days of the Ferguson fallout.
He received from some corners for his handling of the Ferguson situation as unfair, especially those who said Holder played too much of an activist role.
Holder was blasted by some for ordering an independent autopsy and opening a parallel investigation into the police shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown last year. Though not routine, Holder said, “I’m sure there have been other circumstances in which we have made use of independent investigative techniques.”
While it has been reported that the Justice Department will likely not bring civil rights charges against Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson who shot and killed Brown while on duty, Holder would not indicate either way, saying the investigation is almost complete and he expects to announce a decision before he leaves office. Wilson was not charged criminally for killing Brown.
February 27, Washington Post: Ever since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 and the anthrax letters that followed, the government has struggled to develop a reliable and easy way to detect pathogens that could signal a devastating biological attack.
Last year, a Silicon Valley start-up came close to producing what government scientists considered a breakthrough technology — a device the size of a ski boot that could test for tiny microorganisms at rapid speed, helping to safeguard the nation from bio-threats.
But six months before the firm, NVS Technologies, was to deliver its first prototypes, the Department of Homeland Security suddenly canceled its contract. According to a draft audit report and government scientists familiar with the project, the decision was improperly made by a single agency official, without supporting evidence and over the objections of numerous experts within DHS’s Science and Technology Directorate.
February 27, 2015, DOJ: The Department of Justice Civil Rights Division enforces federal hate crimes statutes. A summary of the prosecutions pursued by the DOJ under Eric Holder during his tenure is attached.
February 26, 2015, Huffington Post: We all know that immigration law is complicated. We all know that human beings make mistakes. What we don’t expect is that our government can’t figure out who its own citizens are. But time and time again, the government disappoints. The latest culprit is the Department of Justice (DOJ), which employs the most powerful attorneys in the country.
The DOJ has the authority to issue deportation orders. In a recent decision, the DOJ admitted that it has been misinterpreting certain citizenship statutes since 2008. As a consequence, DOJ officers have been incorrectly ordering U.S. citizens deported.
February 25, 2015, USA Today: DES MOINES, Iowa — The state’s law enforcement officers would be required to wear body cameras whenever they interact with the public under an Iowa House bill that echoes a national push to improve relationships between officers and the communities they serve.
The bill is one of 85 pieces of body camera legislation under consideration in 30 states, according to the Denver-based National Conference of State Legislatures.
Bills in 12 states, including Iowa, would require law enforcement officers to wear body cameras. Other proposed legislation would set policies on when recordings are required, how long the recordings should be stored and who can view them.
Officials worry online propaganda attracts recruits, but monitoring helps catch suspects
February 26, 2015, KOAT: ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. —It’s been exactly a year since Gorden Eden was sworn in as Albuquerque’s police chief, and it hasn’t been the easiest year.
Eden is responsible for implementing historic Department of Justice reforms within the Albuquerque Police Department.
The DOJ stepped in after determining that APD has a pattern of using excessive force. As Eden’s one-year anniversary arrives, the DOJ is watching closely. Eden walked into a department dealing with a lot of controversy.
February 24, 2015, Star Tribune: JUNEAU, Alaska — Alaska on Tuesday became the third U.S. state to legalize marijuana. But the historic day passed with little public acknowledgement in a state with a savvy marijuana culture that has seen varying degrees of legal acceptance of the drug for 40 years.
February 24, 2015, Today: Data from a recent study shows that white and African-American officers alike hold a stronger subconscious bias against African-American suspects — and that they are now overcompensating for that bias, becoming more hesitant to shoot minority suspects. Researchers believe that’s because those officers fear backlash.
February 25, 2015, Chicago Reporter: The City of Chicago paid $54.2 million in settlements and verdicts for police misconduct cases last year, including more than $9.5 million in attorneys’ fees, according to an analysis of city law department data by The Chicago Reporter.
February 25, 2015, euintheus.org: The close and trusted cooperation between the U.S. and Europe is getting even tighter. Two senior officials from Europol, the European Union’s law enforcement agency, visit Washington, DC this week.
February 25, 2015, NorthJersey.com: PATERSON – The four teenagers sitting in the make-believe car seemed nervous as two Paterson police officers questioned them. The driver had no license and a boy in the passenger’s seat kept reaching down to the floor.
February 25, 2015, CTPost: HARTFORD — Civil libertarians and public defenders clashed with law-enforcement authorities Wednesday over Connecticut’s future use of unmanned aerial drones in criminal investigations.
Arguments over the use of drones and the length of time their information might be kept by police were the focus of a hearing before the Program Review and Investigations Committee, which is researching how the General Assembly should legislate the devices later this year.
February 24, 2015, DOJ: The Justice Department announced today that the independent federal investigation found insufficient evidence to pursue federal criminal civil rights charges against George Zimmerman for the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26, 2012, in Sanford, Florida. Prosecutors from the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, officials from the FBI, and the Justice Department’s Community Relations Service met today with Martin’s family and their representatives to inform them of the findings of the investigation and the decision.
February 24, 2015, Tri-Cityherald: The state American Civil Liberties Union has concerns about local police investigating the shooting of Antonio Zambrano-Montes and is asking for federal authorities to intervene.
The ACLU sent a letter Tuesday to Attorney General Eric Holder supporting calls from others in the case to get the U.S. Department of Justice involved.
DOJ officials can better investigate potential civil rights violations and the entire Pasco Police Department, wrote Jennifer Shaw, deputy director, in the letter. She urged federal authorities to assist with the investigation to ensure it’s impartial.
February 24, King5: Seattle needs to move forward quickly to implement reforms in how the police department handles everything from hiring to promoting and disciplining officers, according to the independent auditor in charge of overseeing the police department’s accountability system.
February 23, 2015, Fresno Bee: A former Fresno police detective on Monday pleaded guilty to a federal charge of taking a $20,000 bribe from a suspected drug dealer.
Derik Carson Kumagai, 41, faces up to five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine when he is sentenced May 4 by U.S. District Judge Anthony W. Ishii.
February 23, 2015, philly.com: The U.S. Department of Justice will publish on March 6 the first of three reports on its ongoing review of police-involved shootings in Philadelphia, the civilian-run Police Advisory Commission said today.
February 21, 2015, NPR: Today there are more than 200 civilian oversight entities around the country, though their powers to investigate and punish officers vary. The entities are usually the product of contentious negotiations with police unions, which tend to distrust them.
“You need to have an appropriate mindset towards policing,” says Jim Pasco, the national executive director of the Fraternal Order of Police. He believes civilians just aren’t qualified to judge whether a cop followed a department’s rules governing use of force.
February 18, 2015, Washington Post: Court documents say, agents found stolen drug evidence in Lowry’s car. In the weeks that followed, criminal cases against 28 defendants, some of whom had pleaded guilty and been sent to prison, were dismissed after authorities deemed them tainted by Lowry’s alleged misconduct. Procedures at the Washington Field Office that allowed Lowry to repeatedly check drugs out of an evidence vault, and keep the packages for months without notice, were scrutinized, and changes were made.
Link to graphics regarding the case:
February 17, 2015, NY State Comptroller: Audit of 10 municipalities in NY: Auburn (City), Elmira (City), Hamburg (Town), Herkimer County, Irondequoit (Town), Johnson City (Village), Madison County, Newburgh (Town), Troy (City) and Watertown (City). Figure 1 provides relevant statistics for each municipality.
February 18, 2015, MADISON (WITI) – Attorney General Brad Schimel has announced the Department of Justice will now take the lead in coordinating a prescription drug disposal program in Wisconsin.
February 17, 2015, KSAT: SAN ANTONIO – Money and greed are the two most common reasons corruption can be found in a business and the FBI McAllen office said they’ve had several high-level cases in the last few years.
“What drives public corruption is what I call the ‘gatekeeper concept’ and the gatekeeper, meaning if you want to get to this you got to come through me,” said FBI Supervisory Special Agent Rock Stone.
In 2014, Hidalgo County Sheriff Lupe Trevino was charged with money laundering and sentenced to five years in federal prison.
February 19, 2015, Sacramento Bee: Cities across California are becoming more aggressive in citing and arresting homeless people for simple activities like standing, sitting or resting in public places, according to a report released Thursday by a legal clinic at the University of California, Berkeley.
The report, unveiled by the Berkeley law school’s Policy Advocacy Clinic, finds that local laws against vagrancy are increasingly “criminalizing” the homeless in an effort to drive them from communities and “make them someone else’s problem.”
February 14, 2015, Hefty contract settlements with Boston’s police and firefighters last year contributed substantially to the largest increase in the city’s payroll in modern history, records released Friday show.
In 2014, the city spent 7.5 percent more on worker salaries, climbing to a new all-time high of $1.5 billion.
The surge in spending can be attributed in large part to an arbitration award for police patrol officers that sparked controversy in the 2013 race for mayor. The ruling gave patrol officers a 25.4 percent raise over six years, provided retroactive pay, and set the benchmark for other police and fire negotiations.
In 2014, the city paid one police captain $416,000, and seven officers took home more than $300,000. Compensation for 58 other officers topped $250,000.
February 18, 2015, Privacy Commissioner of Canada: This guidance document aims to identify some of the privacy considerations law enforcement authorities1 (LEAs) should take into account when deciding whether to outfit law enforcement officers with body-worn cameras (BWCs). Also described is the privacy framework that should be part of any law enforcement BWC program in order to ensure compliance with Canada’s personal information protection statutes.
February 18, 2015, National Journal: Google is warning that the government’s quiet plan to expand the FBI’s authority to remotely access computer files amounts to a “monumental” constitutional concern.
The search giant submitted public comments earlier this week opposing a Justice Department proposal that would grant judges more leeway in how they can approve search warrants for electronic data.
February 18, 2015, WASHINGTON — Joseph Clancy will fill the position after four months as acting director. President Barack Obama on Wednesday chose the former Secret Service special agent he installed temporarily in the wake of security breaches to become the agency’s next director, brushing aside an independent panel’s conclusion that the job should go to an outsider.
A good case for video in the holding area. Lt Dan
February 17, 2015, NY Daily News: Aleksander Robin Tomaszewski, 33, thought if he beat himself and blamed it on the Lane County Sheriff’s Office, he’d wiggle his way out of trouble. Instead, the lie was caught on video and he was slapped with more charges and kept in jail for a month.
Here is another case of crime stats becoming an issue. This is a great area to audit. Lt. Dan.
February 15, 2015, Oregon Live: Though both agencies concede their cities’ violent crime rates rose, the analysis blows the increases out of proportion.
“Things are not always as they appear,” said Medford Police Chief Tim George, who has launched a review of the violent crime data for the city of 78,000 to set the record straight.
For example, he said, 125 simple assaults were misclassified in 2013 as aggravated assaults and included incidents in which relatively harmless objects such as shoes or water bottles were thrown at someone. The agency did the same with threats where the person wasn’t actually able to follow through on them.
February 17, 2015, FERGUSON, Mo. — The Mayor of Ferguson, Missouri wants the Justice Department to release the findings of its investigations stemming from the shooting of Michael Brown, Junior.
It’s been more than six months since Brown was fatally shot by then-Ferguson Police officer Darren Wilson. The U.S. Justice Department has been conducting a civil rights investigation of Wilson as well as a broader investigation of the Ferguson Police. Mayor James Knowles, III, wants the findings of those released soon.
Knowles said there are still groups protesting in the region.
February 17, 2015, GPS World: The Federal Aviation Administration has proposed a framework of regulations that would allow routine use of certain small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) in today’s aviation system for commercial purposes.
February 17, 2015, CLEVELAND – Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson said he will not “roll over” to U.S. Department of Justice demands during a city council meeting Tuesday.
After the meeting, he told NewsChannel 5 Investigators it would not be good for the city to go along with all of the department’s plans regarding police reforms. The mayor and DOJ are negotiating a consent decree to implement reforms in the Cleveland Police Department.
Segregation of duties, and property types (guns, money and drugs) always a challenge for smaller agencies. Lt. Dan
February 17, 2015, WishTV: GREENSBURG, Ind. (WISH) — Police arrested former Greensburg police chief Stacey Chasteen Tuesday after she admitted to gambling away tens of thousands of dollars she stole from the department’s property room, according to court documents.
In November, Chasteen abruptly resigned from the department. Just a couple weeks later, a police department employee noticed $72,945 in cash missing from the property room.
February 16, 2015, An international band of cyber crooks that worked its way into dozens of banks has experts warning of a “new era” of cyber crime where criminals steal directly from banks instead of their customers.
And the problem could soon spread to other industries, experts warn…….
February 13, 2015, Govt Tech: The White House Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection highlighted the state of increasing cyber threats and news of cooperation that spans sectors in the form of an information-sharing order.
February 12, 2015, RayComGroup: When confronted by the Tucson AZ. SWAT team the suspect immediately threw down a handgun and surrendered. He was taken into custody without incident but officers quickly realized something was different about the gun.
Sgt. Dugan says the tip was painted orange to resemble a toy gun saying, “this illustrates the hazards and split second decision making officers can face on a daily basis. It it also depicts how criminals will stoop to the lowest levels and emulate children at play when committing crimes in our community.”
February 14, 2015, Dallas News: The Dallas Police Department is testing that theory, and is trumpeting it in its early stages as another victory for community policing.
Some officers are leery of the idea, concerned that the department isn’t hitting enough sections of the city and will value input from amateurs over the opinions of those who actually do the job.
WASHINGTON — In the race to equip police officers with body cameras, some cities are bypassing traditional purchasing rules to award vendors with controversial no-bid contracts.
February 16, 2015, LEO Affairs: Denver Police Chief Robert White on Sunday defended his policy ordering police not to interfere with protesters, saying he found it “disgusting” that they vandalized a memorial for fallen police officers while officers had to stand by and watch, but he said their restraint was necessary to protect the community.
Protesters threw red paint on the memorial outside the department’s headquarters Saturday during a march against police brutality.
Officers and the city’s police union were upset after they were told not to interfere.
In an email sent throughout the department on Sunday, White said there are only rare occasions when police would have to take “immediate enforcement action” during a demonstration.
February 16, 2015, Washington Times: More than a hundred people marched to the Denver Police Department headquarters on Saturday in support of 17-year-old Jessie Hernandez, who was fatally shot by police during a criminal incident in January, a local CBS affiliate reported.
Two men were reportedly arrested for criminal mischief after protesters poured red paint over the memorial dedicated to officers killed in the line of duty, located in front of the police department.
February 11, 2015, 11Alive: WOODSTOCK, Ga — Another metro Atlanta police agency is providing a safe place for Craigslist customers to close their transactions. The Woodstock Police Department is welcoming the public to use their lobby or parking lot to meet buyers and sellers.
February 13, 2015, Times of San Diego: The San Diego Police Officers Association announced Friday that 88 percent of its membership voted to approve a tentative five-year contract with the city.
The deal includes pay raises of 3.3 percent in each of the final two years of the deal, which was detailed by city and police leaders last week and still needs final approval by the City Council.
The agreement is aimed at stopping an outflow of experienced officers who have been leaving for higher pay at nearby law enforcement agencies.
February 14, LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Federal prosecutors say the police chief in Hillview has been convicted of lying to FBI agents.
Police officers testified that Caple asked an officer to move the backpack to a location believed to be off the mayor’s property and failed to report the incident to protect the mayor from bad publicity.
February 14, 2015, ABC News: The 12-member commission has struggled for months to come to agreement on the issue. The group supported a plan to try out the camera in the East Precinct, but it is now saying the department should pause the plan to make the cameras permanent until more study can be completed.
If your agency issues checks to inmates you may want to read this. Lt. Dan.
February 16, 2015, EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. – The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a case involving forged checks, from the Sheriff’s Office own account.
Officials said when an inmate is released from the Criminal Justice Center, they are issued a check from the Sheriff’s Office. The check has the Sheriff’s Office account information at the bottom.
Investigators say several people started using that account number and cashing checks for various amounts.
February 16, 2015, AP: Washington (AFP) – US aviation regulators unveiled sweeping new guidelines Sunday governing the use of small unmanned drones, proposing that the devices can only fly in daylight, must remain within users’ sightlines and cannot fly near manned aircraft.
February 13, 2015, Pittsburgh Post Gazette: The firing of an Allegheny County sheriff’s deputy who tested positive for cocaine hours after he was involved in a fatal shooting was upheld today.
Deputy Richard Dwyer and a union representative met with Sheriff William P. Mullen and others in the sheriff’s office for less than an hour today, the sheriff said.
February 13, 2015, WFTV: ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — A former Orange County deputy will spend the rest of his life in prison after he was convicted of sexually abusing a teenage boy.
Louis Mercado’s case has been playing out for the last seven years. Mercado was a school resource officer when he met the child.
February 13, 2015, KTBS: A Shreveport Police Department detective has been arrested after allegedly sexually assaulting a woman during a criminal investigation interview in his office.
February 13, 2015, CBS News: MADISON, Ala. – An Alabama police officer has been charged with assault and will be fired after authorities say he badly injured a man visiting from India whom he stopped to question as the victim was walking through his son’s neighborhood. The man has filed a lawsuit, and the FBI has opened an investigation.
Fundraising page created for Eric Parker, Madison officer arrested for assaulting Indian grandfather
February 12, 2015, NY Times: WASHINGTON — The F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, delivered an unusually candid speech on Thursday about the difficult relationship between the police and African-Americans, saying that officers who work in neighborhoods where blacks commit crimes at a high rate develop a cynicism that shades their attitudes about race.
February 13, 2015, PASCO, Wash. — The family of an orchard worker who was fatally shot by Pasco police after he was accused of throwing rocks at officers has filed a $25 million claim against the city.
February 15, 2015, James Town Sun: WASHINGTON, – A U.S. appeals court on Friday ruled that federal law enforcement officers cannot be sued for shooting a black 16-year-old four times in 2007 as he attempted to drive away from them after the officers had asked to speak to him.
February 13, 2015, ABC News: An Arizona sheriff known for clashing with the federal government and cracking down on illegal immigration will face a civil contempt-of-court hearing because his office repeatedly violated orders issued in a racial-profiling case, a U.S. judge said Thursday.
U.S. District Judge Murray Snow ruled in 2013 that Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s office had systematically singled out Latinos in regular traffic and special immigration patrols.
The judge scheduled an evidentiary hearing for April 21-24 on allegations Arpaio and his top aides acted in contempt during the case. If Arpaio is found in contempt, he could face daily fines.
February 12, 2015, The Concourse: Minnesota. People woke up to a strange sight: two white-tail bucks, their antlers hopelessly locked after a fight, one of them already dead with a broken neck. The other one was sure to be too, if he couldn’t be freed—a coyote was circling the scene. So they called the cops, who immediately formulated a plan: break out the power tools and non-lethal weaponry.
February 14, 2105, Fox News: Quanell, a former Nation of Islam member, is one of at least two black activists to take the police training tests. Both he and Arizona activist the Rev. Jarrett Maupin came away from the experience with a newfound understanding of the pressure on police officers, not to mention a new message for black youth who come in contact with law enforcement officers.
February 12, 2015, Police Foundation: The Police Foundation has released the latest in their Ideas in American Policing series. This paper, “Effectiveness vs. Equity in Policing: is a Tradeoff Inevitable?”, written by Dr. Robin Engel and Dr. John Eck, challenges the long-standing belief that reducing crime must come at the cost of community relations.
February 12, 2015, AZCentral: A former Tempe police officer was sentenced to 18 months of probation Wednesday for tipping off a drug suspect with whom she was romantically involved in 2013.
February 12, 2015, MLive: DETROIT, MI — A group of rogue Detroit police officers, including one who committed suicide in front of his parents’ home last month, are accused in a federal civil lawsuit filed Wednesday of conducting illegal raids and seizures of medical marijuana businesses and users.
February 12, Oklahoma City — An Oklahoma City officer is accused of pawning police gear, over the period of multiple months.
February 11, Roll Call: Nearly 10 months after she was escorted from Capitol Police headquarters, the civilian employee who headed the department’s Office of Diversity pleaded guilty to embezzling public money during her previous employment at Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
February 12, Fox News: The 2016 Police Interceptor Utility bows at the Chicago Auto Show this week featuring fresh looks and some nifty new tech. The Explorer-based cruiser has firmly grasped the mantle handed to it by the classic Crown Victoria Interceptor since it went on sale in 2012, and now accounts for over half of the police cars sold in the USA, outselling even Ford’s own Taurus-based Police Interceptor Sedan by a 2 to 1 margin.
The new model gets updated…….
February 12, Govt. Tech: A new alert system will pit the efforts of the police, the private sector, the city and the public against one of Los Angeles’ bloody problems.
February 12, 2015, Gov Tech: The law, enacted in 1990, doesn’t sufficiently address cellphones and other wireless devices.
February 12, 2015, Gov. Tech: Judges argue that the software is ineffective and could cause all sorts of problems, including losing inmates in jail. The company, American Cadastre.
February 12, 2015, Gov Tech: (TSN) — A website version of a police scanner introduced six months ago as part of a Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office initiative to communicate with residents has been shut down over concerns about officer safety, according to police officials.
February 11, Gov Tech: In August, Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill requiring all smartphones sold in California after July 1 to contain kill switches, but technology companies already are moving to meet the requirement nationwide.
February 12, NPR: In Detroit six years ago, 11,000 untested rape kits were found in an abandoned police storage unit.
Since then, most of those kits have been sent to crime labs for testing. Prosecutors say the initial results point to at least 188 serial rapists. Often the same DNA shows up in multiple rape kits, or matches DNA in other state databases. But investigating all the results will take millions of dollars the city says it just doesn’t have.
The backlog of untested rape kits is not just a problem in Detroit. For example……
February 12, 2015, Politico: Republicans and Democrats on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee rarely agree on anything, but Reps. Jason Chaffetz and Elijah Cummings are turning up results in their drive to dump the top leadership at the troubled Secret Service.
February 12, 2015, The Atlantic: A new report finds that locking up more offenders isn’t making people any safer—and may even be counterproductive.
February 12, 2015, Washington Times: A demoted Metropolitan Police Department captain lost his whistleblower lawsuit Wednesday against Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier, with a jury deciding his claims were not protected information.
February 10, 2015, The relatively quick and detailed release of information this past weekend regarding Oakland’s first officer-involved shooting in almost two years signals a new culture of transparency in the department, experts and observers say.
February 12, 2015, NY Daily News: The Mercedes-Benz Smart cars seat one person and have air conditioning and air bags. Nine Smart cars — at a cost of $119,000 total — have been purchased for the pilot program, but only one has been put on patrol, in Central Park. As many as 100 more could then replace aging scooters, which can cost up to $27,000 each, officials said.
February 12, 2015, (Reuters) – A rookie New York City police officer was charged with second-degree manslaughter and five other offenses on Wednesday for the fatal shooting of an unarmed man in a dark stairwell of a housing project last November.
Officer Peter Liang was patrolling with his partner in the Brooklyn housing project at about 11:15 p.m. on Nov. 20 when his gun discharged a single bullet, killing Akai Gurley, 28, who was in the stairwell a flight below with a female companion.
February 12, 2015: Members of a House Judiciary subcommittee agreed Wednesday that legislative reforms are needed to prevent local and state police from seizing cash and property under federal law without clear evidence of criminal wrongdoing.
February 12: Joseph Yahner, a 30-year Phoenix Police Department veteran who twice has stepped in to lead the force after controversial ousters of police chiefs, has become the permanent police chief.
February 10, 2015, Pittsburgh CBS: Informed sources say that a mandatory drug test of the deputy after the shooting revealed that he had trace amounts of cocaine in his system.
February 10, 2015, OregonLive: A civil rights lawyer with the U.S. Department of Justice said the federal agency will rely heavily on Portland’s new Community Oversight Advisory Board to learn whether Portland police are complying with a settlement to improve use of force policies, training and oversight.
Jonas Geissler, a senior trial attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice, explained the history that led to the creation of the community board and called the panel “innovative” at its first substantive meeting Monday night.
February 10, 2015, VTDigger.org: The Shumlin administration and a House and Senate committee are pressing forward with a proposal to promote the Vermont Department of Public Safety to an agency. The plan, which would go into effect on July 1, would roll up law enforcement activities across state government and E911 dispatch services.
Keith Flynn, the commissioner of the department, says the plan is designed to centralize services, save money and make public safety programs more efficient.
February 10, 2015, NBC News: Harris County Sherrif’s Office (HCSO) in Texas became the country’s largest Sheriff’s office to allow an observant Sikh American to serve with his articles of faith, including turban and beard, as part of his uniform.
February 9, 2015, 10News: EL CAJON, Calif. – Police quotas for arrests and traffic tickets may be illegal, but sources say they’re a daily part of life at the El Cajon Police Department.
September 9, 2015, NY Times: WASHINGTON — Senior officials at the Department of Homeland Security on Monday demoted the deputy director of the Secret Service, amid criticism from the agency’s most ardent critic on Capitol Hill.
Representative Jason Chaffetz, Republican of Utah, who is the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, had said the deputy director, A. T. Smith, should be dismissed. Mr. Chaffetz said Mr. Smith had been part of the agency’s string of mishaps and scandals.
February 12, 2015, Govt. Tech: As smartphone technology advances, so does anti-theft software, and a growing number of apps are giving users the ability to lock, erase and track phones with GPS.
February 10, 2015, Govt. Tech: U.S. Senator Edward Markey issued a report raising concerns about the ability of hackers to remotely take control of cars or steal personal information from increasingly sophisticated IT systems.
February 10, 2015, Govt. tech: A new office charged with analyzing and integrating cybersecurity threat data collected by regional intelligence agencies aims to do for cybersecurity what the National Counterterrorism Center did for terrorism.
February 9, 2015, WREG: BARTLETT, Tenn. — It seems almost everyone is turning to social media these days including law enforcement. The Bartlett Police Department was recognized for its social media campaign. The International Association for Chiefs of Police ranked the department in the top ten for social media in a department of their size, which is around 110 officers.
February 9, Govt. Tech: In a Feb. 3 letter to the city auditor, Sgt. Barry Donelan accused the department of costing taxpayers millions of dollars by mishandling a project to upgrade the city’s Oracle-made software suite.
February 9, 2015, DOJ: From 1998–2012, Dr. Rodriguez was a professor in Arizona State University’s (ASU) highly respected School of Criminology and Criminal Justice. She was named Associate Dean for Student Engagement in ASU’s College of Public Programs in 2012.
February 6, 2015, Govt. Tech: Assemblyman Matt Dababneh this week introduced AB 221, legislation that would let the Department of Motor Vehicles develop a mobile application for a digital driver’s license, which would be accessed via smartphone.
February 7, 2015, Richmond.com: Electronic coding errors, reporting inconsistencies, jurisdictional issues and police noncompliance with standard crime reporting guidelines have caused an untold number of officer-involved fatal shootings of civilians to go unreported or uncounted in Virginia.
February 5, 2015, AZ Central: Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office purchased 700 wearable cameras for its deputies.
Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who initially stated he opposed body cameras, decided back in October that the Sheriff’s Office would save money by choosing to buy them as opposed to vehicle cameras.
The decision, however, was not made independently, as U.S. District Judge G. Murray Snow ordered the agency to get recording devices back in 2013. This came after Snow ruled Maricopa County deputies were discriminating against Hispanics during their patrol operations.
February 8, 2015, The Statesman: Officers said they saw the suspect walk in and out of a garage multiple times with various weapons. Police would not say how many weapons he had, but did mention the use of a rifle and a shotgun.
At 11:18 p.m., both police on the ground and a tactical flight officer in the helicopter reported the suspect firing the weapon again. It was then that the helicopter began taking fire, Manley said. officer Serrato saw the suspect laying on the ground and aiming a rifle at the helicopter.
“Believing that he was about to again fire at Air 1, putting the lives of the officers inside Air 1 in immediate danger, (Serrato) fired one shot and that shot struck the suspect in this case and fatally wounded him,” Manley said.
February 8, 2015, WFAA: An off-duty Dallas police officer and a woman were pronounced dead after gunfire at the Lake Highlands Landing apartments Saturday night, police said.
The dead officer was identified as 40-year-old Larry Tuttle, a six-year veteran of the department assigned to the South Central Patrol Division.
February 8, 2015, The Guardian: The US government will come under intense pressure this week to explain what action it took after receiving a massive cache of leaked data that revealed how the Swiss banking arm of HSBC, the world’s second-largest bank, helped wealthy customers conceal billions of dollars of assets.
The leaked files, which reveal how HSBC advised some clients on how to circumvent domestic tax authorities, were obtained through an international collaboration of news outlets, including the Guardian, the French daily Le Monde, CBS 60 Minutes and the Washington-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.
The files reveal how HSBC’s Swiss private bank colluded with some clients to conceal undeclared “black” accounts from domestic tax authorities across the world and provided services to international criminals and other high-risk individuals.
February 5, 2015, MSN: A suburban Chicago police officer was acquitted Wednesday of felony reckless conduct for killing a 95-year-old World War II veteran by shooting him with a beanbag gun at close range.
Park Forest Police Officer Craig Taylor was charged after the July 2013 death of John Wrana. In a courtroom packed with officers supporting Taylor, Cook County Judge Luciano Panici said there was nothing criminal about Taylor’s actions and that the officer did “what he was trained to do.”
February 4, 2015, Govt. Tech: Unlike most states, California keeps frozen samples taken from a newborn’s heel indefinitely and shares them with genetic researchers, for a fee.
February 4, 2015, IACP: The webpage, announced by IACP President Richard Beary in December, brings together a collection of new and existing resources to help tell the true story of law enforcement and assist law enforcement in building sustainable community relationships. On the webpage, IACP members can find talking points, model policies, facts and figures about law enforcement, stories from the field, research reports, legislative resources, communications materials, and much more.
January 4, 2015, Police body cameras promise to reveal who’s telling the truth: a police officer accused of misconduct, or the accuser. Civil liberties advocates want to make sure that’s all they reveal.
Proposals in the Washington State Legislature (House Bill 1910 and identical Senate Bill 5732) would restrict police use of body-camera footage for anything but misconduct investigations. The bills would withhold from the general public any footage that isn’t related to potential misconduct, and require the unrelated footage to be destroyed within 75 days.
February 2, 2015, The budget includes $97 million to expand training and oversight for local law enforcement, increase the use of body-worn cameras by police officers, provide “additional opportunities for police department reform,” and experiment with better “community and law enforcement engagement in 10 pilot sites.
January 31, 2015, Crime Science Journal: This study provides information to assist those involved in performance measurement in police organizations. The strategies used to identify the literature are described. Thematic sections cover; general overviews; methodological issues; performance management in other industries; national, international and cross-national studies; frameworks (e.g. Compstat; the Balanced Scorecard); criticisms (particularly unintended consequences); crime-specific measures; practitioner guides; performance evaluation of individual staff; police department plans and evaluations; annotated bibliographies in related areas, and; other literature. Our discussion offers two conclusions: the measures best aligned with performance are typically more expensive, while most operational data should only provide contextual information; the philosophy of open governance should be pursued to promote transparency, accountability and communication to improve police performance.
January 31, 2015, GAYLORD, Minn. (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota has reached a $40,000 settlement with the Gaylord Police Department and the Sibley County Sheriff’s Office in a case that alleged racial profiling.
The ACLU announced the settlement Friday. In addition to the monetary award, the agreement calls for both agencies to receive diversity training, outfit all squad cars with reliable dashboard cameras, and provide translators in some settings.
The case stems from the 2012 arrest of Jesus Sierra, who has lived in Gaylord for years and is of Mexican origin. ACLU attorney Teresa Nelson said authorities had no evidence she committed a crime, but she was arrested and interrogated.
January 31, 2015, Star Tribune: AZ also has a proposed bill to exempt on body camera video from public records request, with some exceptions. Arizona SB 1300 Law Enforcement Officers; body cameras. Here is a link to the bill: http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/52leg/1r/bills/sb1300p.pdf Many realize that public records request for law enforcement videos is a challenge that must be addressed. We posted several articles this month regarding this issue in Seattle. Lt. Dan.
January 29, 2015, Start Tribune: A proposal by a trio of cops-turned-legislators would shield almost all footage shot by police body cameras from public eyes, in what they say is an effort to protect citizens’ privacy.
But advocates of open government say keeping the footage under lock and key undermines attempts to keep police accountable.
January 30, 2015, myfox8.com: LOS ANGELES — A stark re-enactment of a gunman in a mass killing is depicted in a new video by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department that …
January 30, 2015, The President’s task force on policing didn’t have to wait long Friday to see the deep divide between police and some of the citizens they serve.
The first panel discussion at the University of Cincinnati included a police chief, an officer, a researcher and a civil rights activist – and their perspectives were as wildly different as their job descriptions.
January 31, 2015, NEW YORK (AP) — Weeks removed from an open revolt from his own police force that had officers turning their backs on him, Mayor Bill de Blasio now declares he has moved past the rift, striking a tenuous truce with a strategy to stay above the fray and public opinion that eventually soured on the cops’ behavior.
While he acknowledged much work remains to repair the hard feelings over the chokehold death of Eric Garner, de Blasio told The Associated Press he has regained the footing to move on to other matters, including an agenda he plans to outline in next week’s State of the City address.
Nice to see citizens help an officer take a suspect into custody. Lt. Dan
As he tried to gain separation from a dangerous suspect, an officer suddenly found himself on the ground and vulnerable
Food for thought for LE personnel parking marked vehicles at their homes. Lt. Dan
January 30, 2015, Washington Post: The legislatures of two relatively conservative states are considering new bills that would put some restrictions on when and how police can break into private homes. First, in Georgia, “Bou Bou’s Law” would require police to show probable cause that suspects could be dangerous to police or could destroy evidence if police were required to knock and announce themselves before forcing their way into a home. It basically raises the standard of evidence for no-knock raids from reasonable suspicion to probable cause. The bill is named for Bounkham “Bou Bou” Phonesavanh, a toddler who was badly burned and nearly killed by a flash grenade during a drug raid last year.
January 30, 2015, A federal judge Friday returned to a presidential commission on forensic science after the U.S. Justice Department reversed a decision to bar the panel from discussing changes that would give criminal defendants more information about forensic evidence before their trials, a federal official said.
January 23, 2015, Govt. Tech: The Oakland, Calif., Police Department has released its license plate reader data, which reveals a lot — but it’s tough to understand what it all means. A foundation blog post demonstrates what the ALPR data collected by a police department looks like when mapped, and speculates on what the data might be used for.
January 29, 2015, Govt. Tech: The state-funded NextGen Air Transportation office at N.C. State University plans to apply for special FAA permission to start drone experiments for the state Department of Transportation.
January 29, 2015, Govt. Tech: The department hopes that renewing public interest in the cases will prompt someone to come forward with information to crack them.
January 27, 2015, DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – Michigan State Police have asked for authorization to use an aerial drone to photograph vehicle crash scenes and give a bird’s-eye view of other emergency situations across the state.
January 28, 2015, Govt. Tech: State Attorney General Chris Koster urged lawmakers to protect the cameras’ footage from those who would “monetize it or use it to exploit the people it depicts.”
January 29, 2015, Mcclatchydc.com: WASHINGTON — The Drug Enforcement Administration needs to do a better job with the potentially sensitive ‘cold consent’ stops made at mass transit locations, auditors warn in a new report.
Noting the potential for “civil rights concerns,” including racial profiling, the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General called for more data and better training. One problem, auditors say, is that DEA agents haven’t been collecting demographic information on the people they stop.
Link to report:
January 29, 2015, Washington Post: The sole federal judge on a commission appointed by President Obama to improve forensic science in the criminal justice system has resigned in protest, criticizing the U.S. Department of Justice for muzzling its work to benefit prosecutors.
U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff of New York said he quit because the Justice Department had barred it from recommending an expansion of the exchange of pretrial information to include more evidence from forensic experts. Prosecutors routinely share evidence with defense lawyers. Rakoff said in his resignation letter that the ban contradicts the panel’s charter and voids months of work.
The proposed change would address a major criticism of the nation’s top scientific organization and many legal experts, who have warned in recent years that police and prosecutors exercise too much control over crime labs, which suffer from weak standards over research, testimony and examinations. The failings that have led to dozens of lab scandals and hundreds of exonerations over the past two decades.
January 28: ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) – An altercation broke out at St. Louis City Hall during a meeting Wednesday to discuss the possibility of creating a civilian review board so citizens could have a more direct line to police.
January 29, 2015, St. Louis Today: High-profile attacks in downtown St. Louis have prompted Police Chief Sam Dotson to ask the Missouri Highway Patrol to assign troopers to work beside city officers, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Dotson contacted the patrol last week in response to a surge in violent crime downtown over the final five months of last year. Dotson said he foresaw a six-month pilot program in which about a dozen troopers would join forces with city police officers. “We think that if we can work with the highway patrol to bring a little more police visibility and added presence downtown, it will have an impact on crime,” he said. “And if downtown thrives, the region thrives.”
January 28, 2015, Washington, D.C. – On Wednesday, February 11 at 10:00 a.m., the Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations Subcommittee will hold an oversight hearing on civil asset forfeiture. Members of the subcommittee will examine current asset forfeiture procedures and practices and the Justice Department’s recently revised guidelines issued governing the circumstances under which state seizures will be “adopted” by the federal government for forfeiture. Through adoption, the federal government “adopts” forfeitures made by state and local police departments. In return, federal authorities keep a portion of the proceeds and return a large portion of it to the local law enforcement that made the seizure.
Additionally, members will look at forfeiture policies recently reported on that have highlighted problems with civil asset forfeiture. These include innocent owners forfeiting their property, allegations of police targeting motorists with the hopes of finding cash to seize, and other systemic problems that warrant attention.
January 29, 2015, Washington Post: The sole federal judge on a commission appointed by President Obama to improve forensic science in the criminal justice system has resigned in protest, criticizing the U.S. Department of Justice for muzzling its work to benefit prosecutors.
U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff of New York said he quit because the Justice Department had barred it from recommending an expansion of the exchange of pretrial information to include more evidence from forensic experts. Prosecutors routinely share evidence with defense lawyers. Rakoff said in his resignation letter that the ban contradicts the panel’s charter and voids months of work.
The proposed change would address a major criticism of the nation’s top scientific organization and many legal experts, who have warned in recent years that police and prosecutors exercise too much control over crime labs, which suffer from weak standards over research, testimony and examinations. The failings that have led to dozens of lab scandals and hundreds of exonerations over the past two decades.
January 27, 2015, DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – Michigan State Police have asked for authorization to use an aerial drone to photograph vehicle crash scenes and give a bird’s-eye view of other emergency situations across the state.
January 28, 2015, Govt. Tech: State Attorney General Chris Koster urged lawmakers to protect the cameras’ footage from those who would “monetize it or use it to exploit the people it depicts.”
January 27, 2015,CS Monitor: As part of the federal program, cameras on key thoroughfares take snapshots of license plates to catch smugglers and other criminals. Americans may be more carefully weighing societal benefits versus privacy for such programs.
Denver’s independent monitor on Tuesday announced he is launching an evaluation of the police department’s policies on shooting at moving vehicles after the fourth shooting in seven months of people who officers said were using cars as weapons.
January 28, 2015, LA Times: It takes only a couple of clicks of the traffic cop icon to post an officer’s general location. Waze asks whether the officer is “visible” or “invisible.”
Such real-time traffic reporting has made Google-owned Waze wildly popular. But the police location button is coming under criticism from some police officials who fear the feature could put officers in jeopardy.
January 26, 2015, Dallas News: Dallas police commanders announced Monday to members of the City Council’s public safety committee that they have amended their foot-chase policy. The current policy was highly scrutinized and criticized by officers, claiming they were too confusing and restrictive.
The Dallas Morning Star reported that commanders stated they will allow officers more freedom to make judgment calls in terms of foot chases. They have also modified some of the language in the policy after police associations complained.
January 27, 2015, On Tuesday a drone carrying methamphetamine crashed in Mexico, triggering an investigation by Tijuana police and raising the question of whether the technology is a new avenue for drug smuggling.
January 24, 2015, St Louis Today: Simple but repugnant to some officers — is to teach police to back away from certain difficult situations until help can arrive…..
The concept is known as “tactical retreat” or sometimes “tactical withdrawal” or “tactical restraint.”
The Michigan State Police Vehicle Test Team is pleased to announce the results of the 2015 Model Year Police Vehicle Evaluation. This year we tested fourteen vehicles and seven motorcycles.
January 27, 2015, Govt. Tech: Conflict between lawmakers lies between whether license plate reader “hits” on innocent people should be deleted immediately by police or kept for 90 days. January 26: Lawyers see new benefit to D.C. police body cameras — as evidence for trials
January 26, 2015, When D.C. police began outfitting some officers’ shirts and glasses with miniature cameras in the fall, the objectives were obvious: to protect residents from overly zealous officers during arrests as well as to protect officers from any unfounded complaints.
But this month in D.C. Superior Court, prosecutors and defense attorneys explored another benefit of the video: as evidence for trial.
January 26, 2015, Roll Call: Two similar Democratic proposals to equip more police officers with body-worn cameras should come into better focus within days, as details emerge on a White House initiative as well as a prominent African-American lawmaker’s legislation in the House. But GOP lawmakers with authority on the issue on both sides of Capitol Hill are so far tight-lipped.
January 27, 2015, Govt. Tech: Facial recognition. It’s now powerful enough to let stores use cameras to link customers’ faces to information stored in databases—but it’s also finding use in industrial and transportation settings, where it can be used to keep people away from sensitive areas. But are we ready for this tech to start linking personal data with our faces without our knowledge?
January 27, 2015, HOUSTON (KTRK) — Snapshots have helped paint the picture of crime scenes for decades but investigators with the Houston Forensic Science Center are testing new technology at crime scenes right now.
It’s groundbreaking and Vice President of 3rdTech Inc. Doug Schiff says, “It is like visiting the crime scene.”
January 26, 2015, When D.C. police began outfitting some officers’ shirts and glasses with miniature cameras in the fall, the objectives were obvious: to protect residents from overly zealous officers during arrests as well as to protect officers from any unfounded complaints.
But this month in D.C. Superior Court, prosecutors and defense attorneys explored another benefit of the video: as evidence for trial.
January 26, PoliceOne: Black Hawk helicopters and truck-sized X-ray machines that are typically deployed along the U.S.-Mexico border have been brought to the Super Bowl.
January 26, 2015, Star-Telegram: Sheriffs are campaigning to pressure Google Inc. to turn off a feature on its Waze traffic software that warns drivers when police are nearby. They say one of the technology industry’s most popular mobile apps could put officers’ lives in danger from would-be police killers who can find where their targets are parked.
January 16, 2015, NJ.Com: The U.S. Justice Department, which posted the request for applications on its website, said applications are due by 5:00 pm on Feb. 13, 2015.
January 25: President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing
- Listening Session: Policy & Oversight
January 30, 2015, Cincinnati, OH
- Listening Session: Technology & Social Media
January 31, 2015, Cincinnati, OH
- Listening Session: Community Policing & Crime Reduction
February 13, 2015, Phoenix, AZ
- Listening Session: Training & Education
February 14, 2015, Phoenix, AZ
- Listening Session: Officer Safety & Wellness
February 23, 2015, Washington, DC
For more information on the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing and the upcoming listening sessions visit
January 23, 2015, San Francisco police officer could be sentenced to 10 years in federal prison in April after he was convicted of searching suspects’ apartments without a warrant and falsifying documents to justify it later..
January 23, 2015, Houston: Three former Houston police officers were indicted on felony charges Friday by a Harris County grand jury. The charges stem from an investigation into allegations the officers were falsifying traffic tickets in a bid to gain overtime pay.
Specifically, the officers are accused of listing their fellow officers as witnesses during traffic stops when the officers were not actually present when the violation occurred. Being listed as a witnessing officer on a traffic citation means that officer could be called to testify in municipal court and would therefore earn overtime.
January 23, 2015, PoliceOne: Six packets of the drug, weighing more than six pounds, were taped to the six-propeller remote-controlled aircraft.
January 25, 2015, Police One: The gusher of oil and money flowing from the Bakken fields, in North Dakota has made policing more demanding and dangerous
This is an interesting interview of the Cleveland Police Chief as well as a story on the legalization of marijuana in Colorado. (link below for the interview) Lt. Dan.
January 25, 2015, CBS: CLEVELAND, Ohio – Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams said during an interview broadcast Sunday night on “60 Minutes” that he does not agree with the U.S. Justice Department report alleging the city’s police force has a pattern of using excessive force.
Link to 60 minutes interview
January 21, 2015, NY Post: Federal authorities will not seek civil-rights charges against the Missouri cop who gunned down unarmed black teen Michael Brown, law-enforcement sources said Wednesday.
This will make you think twice the next time you pull over a violator. Good reminder of how quick these incidents go down. LT. Dan.
June 22, ABC: After pulling over the car early on the morning of Jan. 3, Golson walked up to the driver’s-side window. The SUV was stolen, he would later learn.
The body camera attached to the front of Golson’s uniform caught every terrifying second of what happened next. “He was trying to start the car. It wasn’t starting and I told him to turn it off,” Golson recalled. “And when I opened the driver’s door he spun sideways in his seat. He had the gun in his hand and he fired.”
January 22, 2015, CBS: MIAMI – Miami police were virtually powerless to stop a virtual “flash mob on wheels” when hundreds of dirt bikes, motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles took to the streets on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, reports CBS Miami.
January 22, 2015, Seattle PI: Just about one in five rape kits collected by the Seattle Police Department have been tested by the state crime lab in the past 10 years.
Chief Kathleen O’Toole wants them all tested now. The police department announced this priority on Thursday. Sexual-assault kit testing has come up repeatedly as a concern among community agencies, victim advocates, prosecutors and medical professionals.
January 22, 2015, Mercury News: SAN FRANCISCO – Officials Wednesday said they have launched an investigation after two videos surfaced showing a San Francisco police officer appearing to try to dump a disabled man out of his wheelchair and into the street in the city’s Sunnydale public housing complex over the weekend.
January 21, 2015, SignalSCV: The Citizens Commission on Jail Violence’s call for use of body scanners is “vitally important,” Sheriff Jim McDonnell said.
More body scanners will be put to use in county jails after three of the devices proved effective detecting contraband on inmates during a recent pilot project, the sheriff told Los Angeles County supervisors Tuesday.
January 20, 2015, Police Foundation: In partnership with the Colorado Chiefs Association, the Police Foundation released Colorado’s Legalization and the Impact on Public Safety: A Practical Guide for Law Enforcement on Wednesday, January 14, 2015 at the “Marijuana Impact on Public Health and Safety” conference, hosted by the Colorado Association of Chiefs of Police. The conference, in Lone Tree near Denver, drew nearly 500 attendees from across the nation.
January 21, 2015, Contra Costa Times: Oakland’s Police Department once again received its best-ever report from a federal monitor, but it still isn’t ready to emerge from more than a decade of federal oversight.
In his quarterly report released Wednesday, Robert Warshaw, a former U.S. deputy drug czar, found that the police department was in full compliance with 19 of the remaining 22 reform tasks — one more than in his previous report.
January 21, 2015, DOJ: Thomas R. Rodella, 53, the former Rio Arriba County Sheriff, was sentenced today by U.S. District Court Judge James O. Browning for his conviction on criminal civil rights and firearms charges. Rodella was sentenced to 37 months in federal prison for his deprivation of rights conviction and an additional seven years for brandishing a firearm while committing the civil rights offense, for an aggregate sentence of 121 months of imprisonment. Rodella will be on supervised release for three years after completing his prison sentence. Rodella also was ordered to pay a $200,000 fine U.S. Attorney Damon P. Martinez for the District of New Mexico announced.
January 12: Albuquerque officers charged with murder in shooting of homeless man January 12, 2015, AP: Two Albuquerque police officers were charged with murder Monday in the shooting death of a knife-wielding homeless man that led to violent protests and brought new scrutiny to the police department amid a federal investigation.
January 12: Los Angeles sees ‘significant’ increase in violent crime, LAPD says January 12, 2015, Daily News: The amount of violent crime reported in Los Angeles rose by double digits last year, officials said Monday, a spike that reverses an 11-year streak of falling crime numbers in the city.
January 12, 2015, Losing marijuana business, Mexican cartels push heroin and meth January 11, 2015, Washington Post: SAN YSIDRO, Calif. — Mexican traffickers are sending a flood of cheap heroin and methamphetamine across the U.S. border, the latest drug seizure statistics show, in a new sign that America’s marijuana decriminalization trend is upending the North American narcotics trade.
January 12: 8 Ways American Policing Could Change This Year January 12: Police Reviews in Deaths Scrutinized January 11, 2015, WSJ.com: Lawmakers in some states are moving to make investigations of police-involved killings more independent by requiring outside review or special prosecutors in such cases. The change follows nationwide protests….
January 12: In Police Rift, Mayor de Blasio’s Missteps Included Thinking It Would Pass January 11, 2015, NY Times: Not long after Mayor Bill de Blasio sat beside the Rev. Al Sharpton at a July summit meeting on police reform, a political adviser gave the mayor a blunt assessment: You have a problem with the cops. Rank-and-file officers felt disrespected by the mayor, the adviser explained…..
January 11: Sheriff’s Dept. higher-ups now appear to be targets in jails inquiry January 10, 2015, LA Times: Former Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca in 2011; a grand jury is now hearing testimony about the actions of Baca and Paul Tanaka, his top aide at the time, as they reacted to discovery of a cellphone provided to a county jail inmate by the FBI.
January 11: ISIS repeats a threat; NYPD, other law enforcement on high alert January 11, 2015, (CNN) New York City Police Department officials and other law enforcement personnel across the United States were alerted to a new threat from ISIS after the terror group released a video message Saturday calling for its followers to “rise up.” An ISIS spokesman, Abu Mohammed al Adnani, is seen saying that followers should “rise up and kill intelligence officers, police officers, soldiers, and civilians,” specifically naming the United States, France, Australia and Canada as targets, according to a memo that CNN obtained. It’s not the first time ISIS has made such a threat.
January 11: Aurora police propose rolling back reforms for minority hires January 11, 2015, Denver Post: Changes to diversify the Aurora Police Department’s recruiting classes are not working, police officials say, so they want to roll back the reforms and return to tests that were discontinued after a federal investigation into the city’s lack of minority police officers. Aurora eliminated some tests after the U.S. Department of Justice began a review of the police department in 2009 over its extremely low number of black and Latino officers compared with other departments similar in size. But as in 2009, the approximately 675-officer force continues to be 85 percent white — in a city that is 28 percent Latino and 16 percent black. “If the process hasn’t improved, maybe we should bring back some of the testing in the past to make sure we have the quality applicants we are searching for,” said Lt. Troy Edwards, who is spearheading the proposal.
January 11: How a free Army helicopter cost Newark police more than $2M This is a good example of problems with some free military surplus. Although it does not involve army surplus helicopters here is the link to a good audit done by the Phoenix City Auditor reference the PD air unit. Lt. Dan https://www.phoenix.gov/auditorsite/Documents/9%20Police%20Air%20Support%20Unit%20Review.pdf January 11, 2015, NJ.com: Newark’s police helicopter, acquired for free as surplus military hardware, has been an expensive tool for the city, which has spent more than $2 million to refurbish, maintain and operate the Vietnam-era aircraft.
January 10: Audit: State cops botched tracking of seized assets January 10, 2015, LoHud: The audit by the state Comptroller’s Office found that nearly $993 million in seized property was misclassified. Troops didn’t even report some seized property to headquarters.
January 10: Judge: Rehire Cleveland officer fired after deadly chase January 9, 2015, CLEVELAND (AP) — A judge in Cleveland has upheld an arbitrator’s decision that the city should rehire a police sergeant fired after a deadly 2012 chase that ended with officers killing two people in a barrage of gunfire.
January 10: Bratton Tells New York Police Officers It’s Time to Get Back to Work January 9, 2015, Seeking to end more than two weeks of a precipitous drop in police activity, Police Commissioner William J. Bratton said on Friday that he had instructed top commanders to do what they could to reverse the trend. The message, which was delivered to union leaders on Wednesday and to commanders over the next two days, was relayed to rank-and-file officers during roll calls on Friday…
January 10: Video: Md. man charged in dump truck attack on cops, footage released January 9, 2015, GLENARDEN, Md. — A man who intentionally crushed two Maryland police cruisers with a dump truck has been charged with attempted murder of police officers. WTOP reports 31-year-old Gene Thomas Brandon, Jr., who has a history of mental illness, was delusional at the time of the attack and believed his brother had been shot in Washington, D.C.
January 10: Dallas officer accused of sex assault found dead January 9, 2015, WFAA: LITTLE ELM — A Dallas officer who was arrested in December on a charge of sexual assault has been found dead inside his Denton County home, sources confirm. The sources say Senior Cpl. David Kattner’s wife found him dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound at their Little Elm home. He was scheduled to attend an internal affairs meeting Friday morning.
January 9: Indianapolis to Grow Police Force January 8, 2015, Inside Indiana Business: Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard announced Thursday morning the city can add 115 officers to the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department in 2015. He says that is up from 90 due to “smart budgeting. “January 9: Patrol shift changes to revolutionize crime fight, Baltimore police say.
January 9: Patrol shift changes to revolutionize crime fight, Baltimore police say January 9, 2015, Baltimore Sun: Baltimore police and city officials say a new police patrol schedule will put more officers on the streets at the most needed times, give officers more time off and cut overtime spending.
January 9: Cop shot by fellow officer during undercover sting January 9, 2015: ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – An Albuquerque police officer has been shot by another officer in a busy area of town. According to Chief Gorden Eden they were both undercover. Chief Gorden Eden was emotional as he spoke about the shooting Friday. “Both officers involved were working in plain clothes and in an undercover capacity and both officers have been with the department for many years,” Chief Eden said.
January 9: Newark Police Department concludes body camera test January 9, 2015, Newark Post: As the national debate about police body cameras heats up, Newark has just concluded a year-long pilot program to test the devices. Officials quietly began experimenting with the technology in the summer of 2013 and started the formal test period last January – using its civilian parking enforcement officers (PEOs), rather than sworn police officers. The cameras will be evaluated, and officials will consider expanding the program. “We’re definitely looking into getting patrol officers equipped with body cameras,” said Cpl. James Spadola, a spokesman for the Newark Police Department.
January 9: Activist critical of police undergoes use of force scenarios January 9, 2015, FOX 10 asked Maupin what his biggest take-away from the exercise will be. “I didn’t understand how important compliance was, but after going through this; yes my attitude has changed, this happens in 10-15 seconds. People need to comply for their own sake,”
January 9: LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Meets With ‘Black Lives Matter’ Group January 9, 2015, CBS: LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Demonstrators vowed to continue protesting outside Los Angeles Police Department headquarters Friday, after police Chief Charlie Beck refused to meet their demand that he immediately fire two officers involved in the fatal shooting of 25-year-old Ezell Ford. As many as 100 members of the group, Black Lives Matter Los Angeles — a local chapter of a national coalition — have been gathering outside police headquarters since Dec. 30 in response to the release of autopsy results, showing Ford was shot once in the right side of his back, once in the right arm and once in the right abdomen.
January 9: When Morale Dips, Some Cops Walk The Beat — But Do The Minimum January 9, 2015, NPR: New York isn’t the first city to see this kind of protest, in which officers do the minimum required. There are several names for it, too, such as “depolicing” and “rule-book protest.”
January 9: New York Police Commissioner Confirms Work Slowdown By Officers January 9, 2015, NPR: New York City Police Commissioner William Bratton confirmed there had been a work slowdown by officers in the weeks since two police officers were shot dead, but added that the matter was being corrected.
January 9: Affidavit: SAPD officer arrested for stealing pot, cash and a gun January 9, 2015, SAN ANTONIIO — A San Antonio Police Department officer was arrested Thursday night after allegedly stealing money, drugs and a gun from a man and woman while on duty last week.
January 9: An Oklahoma City police officer accused of sexually assaulting women while on duty has been fired. January 9, 2015, New OK: Daniel Ken Holtzclaw, 28, awaits trial on 36 counts, including eight counts of rape. He is accused of sexually assaulting 13 women while on duty, most of them in neighborhoods on the city’s northeast side.
January 8: Black Panther ‘Gun Club’ following, filming police in Texas January 8, 2015, LEO Affairs: In suburban Arlington, Texas, a group of police watchers have been seen armed with guns, following and filming police officers. The officers, thus far, have done nothing in response. According to the Houston Chronicle, although Arlington police might see the cop-watchers as an annoyance and bothersome, they do not seem to be afraid of the group.
January 8: Detroit yearly rape totals vastly underreported January 8, 2015, Detroit News — Police officials on Tuesday reported there were 322 sexual assaults in Detroit last year — but the actual number was more than five times that. According to police records reviewed by The Detroit News, there were 1,845 sexual assaults in the city. Behind the vastly different numbers are two factors: Detroit Police, like most departments, release statistics to the public using the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting method —
January 8: Miami set to hand over police-shooting probes to FDLE January 8, 2015, As Miami nears an accord with the U.S. Department of Justice over a string of police-involved shootings in the past seven years, the city is set to hand over future investigations into shootings and in-custody deaths to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The move, on the heels of a similar October agreement between the FDLE and Miami-Dade police — among the largest police departments in the southeastern U.S. — would leave only a handful of agencies in Miami-Dade to investigate their own shootings.
January 7: SAN DIEGO — It looks as though the Sheriff’s Department’s Facebook page is gone for good. January 7, 2015, UT San Diego: The agency took the fan page down two months ago in response to a lawsuit accusing the department of violating free speech rights by removing unflattering comments. The lawsuit, filed by Oceanside gun-parts dealer Dimitrios Karras, asked a federal judge to order the Sheriff’s Department to restore the Facebook page, along with all of Karras’ deleted comments.
January 7: Tucson AZ. Police Chief is retiring at the end of the year January 7, 2015, TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) — Tucson Police Chief, Roberto Villasenor, is retiring at the end of the year and dozens of senior level officers are leaving the force as well.
January 7: The St. Louis region is policed by 60 separate departments. Is it working? What does the ideal police department look like? What can be changed? January 7, 2015, St. Louis Today: The first of four town hall discussions was held Wednesday night in St. Louis to explore answers to these questions. The meetings are part of a study by Better Together and the Police Executive Research Forum, or PERF.
January 7: Portland’s new chief of police Larry O’Dea sworn in January 2, 2015, Oregon Live: Portland’s new city auditor Mary Hull Caballero swore in Larry O’Dea as the city’s new police chief about 10 a.m. Friday. O’Dea served as a reserve officer in Fairfax County, Va., and a reserve deputy sheriff in Clackamas County before joining Portland police in 1986. He was appointed as an assistant chief in November 2008.
January 7: Foundation to pay off slain NYPD officers’ mortgages January 7, 2015. NEW YORK — A foundation created to honor a firefighter killed on Sept. 11 has raised enough money to pay off the mortgages and make repairs on the homes of two slain New York Police Department officers, foundation executives announced Wednesday.
January 7: ‘Suicide by cop’: desperate act of a tormented soul January 7, 2015, SF Gate: As police shootings stir controversy around the country, the killing by two San Francisco sergeants of an apparently despondent man outside Mission Station represented a different kind of confrontation, officials said: one in which the officers’ unique position in society, and training in using deadly force, were exploited.
January 7: Oversight of mandated Portland police reforms: latest updates January 7, 2015, The City Council Wednesday approved additional money to help cover the travel costs of an out-of-state team of consultants hired to monitor the Portland Police Bureau’s compliance with federally-mandated reforms to bureau policies, training and oversight. The council approved an annual contract of $315,000 to Rosenbaum & Watson, the Chicago-based team of academics selected to serve as the city’s new compliance officer/community liaison (COCL). The academics will be paired with former Oregon chief justice Paul J. DeMuniz. Of that annual amount, up to $75,000 is set aside for travel expenses.
January 7: San Antonio considering police body cams January 7, 2015, Houston Chronicle: SAN ANTONIO–The San Antonio Police Department likely will outfit 251 police officers on downtown bike patrol and in the Park Police with small cameras worn on the uniform while other units will continue to use in-car video systems.
January 7: Los Angeles police order Tasers that will activate body cameras when used January 7, 2015, Washington Post: Los Angeles police on Tuesday ordered Tasers that, when used, automatically activate cameras on officers’ uniforms, which will create visual records of incidents at a time of mounting concern about excessive force by U.S. law enforcement officers. The 3,000 new digital Taser X26P weapons record the date, time and duration of firing, and whether Taser wires actually strike suspects and how long the thousands of volts of electricity pulse through them.
January 6: Audit: DHS Drone Program Ineffective at Border Security January 6, 2015, Free Beacon: “We estimate that, in fiscal year 2013, it cost at least $62.5 million to operate the program, or about $12,255 per [flight] hour,” the audit said. “The Office of Air and Marine’s calculation of $2,468 per flight hour does not include operating costs, such as the costs of pilots, equipment, and overhead.”……………
January 6: In 2015, Miami and Justice Dept. still negotiating police reforms January 6, 2015, Miami Herald: In the summer of 2013, following a lengthy review of 33 police-involved shootings during a three-year span, the U.S. Department of Justice found that when it came to pulling the trigger, Miami police had engaged in a pattern of “excessive force.”
January 6: L.A. County Sheriff Jim McDonnell looking to change jails staffing January 6, 2015, Daily News: With about a month on the job, Sheriff Jim McDonnell said this week he is actively looking at a plan that would reduce or eliminate the need for new deputies to work in the jails as a way to improve recruitment and reduce violence.
January 6: San Diego Board Overseeing Police Misconduct Cases Gets New Boss January 6, 2015, KPBS.org: The San Diego Citizens Review Board on Police Practices provides a second set of eyes on police misconduct cases, but it has operated for the past four years without a full-time director. That changed this month when the city named Sharmaine Moseley as the board’s executive director. Moseley comes to San Diego from the citizen review board in Albany, New York.
January 6: Arrest stats point to New York Police Department slowdown January 6, 2015, NEW YORK (AP) — Despite efforts by New York City officials to tout a dip in serious crime, another statistic is getting more attention — a steep decline in the number of arrests across all five boroughs in the two weeks since two police officers were shot dead in their patrol car. The totals suggest that a rumored work slowdown has taken hold amid discord between the rank and file and Mayor Bill de Blasio, and raise questions about what impact it could have on the city’s crime rate.
January 6: Elevator footage shows off-duty officer fumble gun before shooting self January 6, 2015, WCPO: CINCINNATI — Elevator security camera footage released Monday shows a Northern Kentucky police officer fumbling with his work-issued firearm moments before shooting himself in the stomach.
January 6: Irvington NJ police captain arrested after trying to run down Newark councilman, authorities say January 6, 2015, NJ.COM: NEWARK — An Irvington police captain was arrested early this morning after allegedly trying to run over a city councilman with her car, according to authorities.
January 6: Philly Police using video to fight crime: ‘We’ve become the model for other departments’ January 6, 2015, Technical: The Philadelphia Police Department is on the cutting edge of using video to solve crime, according to a Daily News report. Since 2008, about 90 cops have been trained in video recovery, which, among other things, teaches officers how to turn video footage into YouTube clips. It also helps that more Philadelphians are signing up to share their video footage with the Police Department through its SafeCam program.
January 6: LAPD moves to expand TASER deployment along with body-worn cameras to maximize public safety January 6, 2015, MarketWatch: SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., Jan. 6, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — TASER (NASDAQ: TASR) today announced the receipt of several orders for a total of 3,130 TASER X26P™ Smart Weapons for the Los Angeles Police Department. The first order is an upgrade of 2,270 older TASER weapons…
January 6: FAA grants permits for agriculture, real estate drones January 6, 2015, WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Aviation Administration on Tuesday issued permits to use drones to monitor crops and photograph properties for sale, marking the first time permission has been granted to companies involved agriculture and real estate. The exemptions to the current ban on commercial drone flights were granted to Advanced Aviation Solutions in Spokane, Washington, for “crop scouting,” and to Douglas Trudeau of Tierra Antigua Realty in Tucson, Arizona. Advanced Aviation Solutions plans to use its 1.5-pound, fixed-wing eBee drone to make photographic measurements of farm fields……
January 5: Portland police draft policy for dealing with mentally ill January 5, 2015, PORTLAND Statesman (AP) — Portland police have drafted a new policy for dealing with mentally ill people that says sometimes it’s OK for an officer to walk away if a confrontation could jeopardize a suspect or other people.
January 5: Portland’s contract to monitor police reforms will cost $315,000 annually, records show January 5, 2015, Oregon Live: The city of Portland would pay $315,000 annually to a team of consultants hired to help monitor the Police Bureau’s compliance with federal-mandated reforms to bureau policies, training and oversight, under an ordinance that goes before the City Council on Wednesday.
January 5: Intel unveils app that opens sites with user’s face January 5, 2014, LAS VEGAS — Say goodbye to passwords and hello to having your face open your favorite websites. Chipmaker Intel has come up with tools to use biometrics — facial recognition — to replace passwords.
January 4: Las Vegas police to assume constable duties January 2, 2014, 8 News: LAS VEGAS — The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department will take over the operations of the Las Vegas Township Constable’s Office starting Jan. 5. The move follows a vote by the Clark County Commission in March to abolish the office after numerous controversies. The Constable’s Office will become part of Metro’s Detention Services Division.
January 4: Another Silent Protest of Mayor de Blasio as Officer Liu Is Laid to Rest January 4, 2015, NY Times: For the second time in just over a week, a river of pressed blue uniforms filled the streets of a New York City neighborhood on Sunday as law enforcement officers from across the country paid respects to a slain colleague. And for the second time, hundreds of those officers made a silent show of protest against Mayor Bill de Blasio. Almost as soon as he finished adjusting the microphone to his tall frame and began his eulogy for Officer Wenjian Liu, the protesting officers on the streets outside the funeral parlor, following the ceremony on screens and over loudspeakers, pivoted away from the building.
January 4: More than 200 MPD officers resign amid benefit and pension changes January 2, 2014, MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) – Multiple Memphis police officers are handing in letters of resignation, citing recent decisions by city council to alter benefit and pension plans. According to Memphis Police Association President Michael Williams, close to 200 officers have resigned from the Memphis Police Department in the past year.
January 1: Arrest Statistics Decline Sharply; Police Unions Deny an Organized Slowdown December 31, 2014, NY Times: Arrests for crimes large and small, as well as tickets for minor infractions, are down drastically across the city. The department has not said whether it believes that officers are acting in concert — as a result of a specific job action — or whether the officers’ deaths produced a spontaneous response.
January 1: For New York police commissioner, a delicate balancing act in a tense city January 1, 2015, Washington Post: William J. Bratton has often been the featured face of de Blasio’s administration since the shooting, emerging not only as a steadying presence in a nervous city but also as a respected national voice from the officers’ perspective on race and policing.
January 1: Albuquerque PD 5 months without a police shooting January 1, 2015, Albuquerque Journal: It’s been a violent half-decade for the Albuquerque Police Department – its officers have been involved in 41 shootings, 27 of them fatal, since 2010. But 2014 came to a close with the longest gap between police shootings in the past five years. APD officers haven’t been in an officer-involved shooting since July 22, which is more than five months. Prior to this stretch, the longest the department went without a shooting since 2010 was about 3½ months, from mid-March to early July 2013.
December 31: Protesters storm police headquarters in downtown St. Louis; 5 arrests made December 31, 2014, Fox News: ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI)- What began as a ‘March to the Arch’ quickly changed early Wednesday morning as protesters stormed the front doors of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department headquarters. Their plan was to occupy the department for four and a half hours. The demonstrators refused to leave until those demands were met. December 31: Berkeley, Missouri police chief: Investigation confirms man shot by officer had gun December 30, 2014, BERKELEY, Mo. – An internal police investigation confirmed an 18-year-old pointed a gun at an officer who shot him to death in a convenience store parking lot in suburban St. Louis last week, officials said Tuesday. December 31: Tensions remain after New York City mayor meets police unions December 30, 2014, (Reuters) – Police union leaders said their grievances with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio remained unresolved after meeting with him on Tuesday, 10 days after they said he was partly to blame for a gunman’s deadly attack on two policemen. The meeting came after a marked drop in arrests across the city last week. One city newspaper said the decline was evidence of a “virtual work stoppage”, but city officials were unable to say on Tuesday whether or not a police slowdown was under way. December 31: Congress temporarily de-funds US-DOJ medical marijuana prosecution but does not legalize medical marijuana December 30, 2014, Lexocology: In a few short paragraphs within the 1,603-page congressional spending bill signed into law on December 16, 2014, Congress prohibited the U.S. Department of Justice from using federal funds to prosecute users, growers and distributors of medical marijuana in states that have enacted medical marijuana statutes. The full text….. December 30: U.S. Police Officer Shooting Deaths Up 56 Percent in 2014 December 30, 2014, NBC: Shooting deaths of members of the U.S. law-enforcement community spiked by 56 percent in 2014 over last year, including more than a dozen ambush attacks against officers, according to new data released Tuesday — on a week that will be bookended by funerals for slain officers. December 30: NYC mayor, police union heads to meet amid rift December 30, 2014, ABC News: Mayor is aiming to clear the air with police unions today after rancor brewed over the shooting deaths of cops and City Hall’s response to protests over police conduct. December 29: Officers shot at in Florida and Los Angeles December 29, 2014, (CNN) — Two Los Angeles police officers were shot at Sunday night while they drove their patrol car in the southern part of the city, police said. The officers returned fire, authorities said, and no one was injured. And there was a second incident over the weekend in which police were fired at, this one in Florida on Sunday morning. Someone fired three bullets at two deputies with the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office as they sat in their patrol car. September 29: DoJ’s new cybersecurity office to aid in worldwide investigations September 29, 2014, Fed News Radio: The Justice Department is taking its cybercrime-fighting efforts to a new level with the addition of a new cybersecurity unit. The unit will be operating under DoJ’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property section, and will serve to offer legal advice for cybercrime investigations worldwide. December 28, 2014, NYPD Commish Bratton: de Blasio, police rift ‘will go on for a while’ (Video) December 28: Researchers Will Study Police Confrontations Via Body Cameras December 11, 2014, Tech Review: UCLA scholars will analyze raw video and audio feeds to glean insights into effective policing. December 28: Detective charged with stealing prescription drugs from evidence room Another oxy case. This case demonstrates the challenges smaller agencies have with property room oversight. Even a small agency should have a check and balance with the IA/PSB detective or sergeant conducting inspections on high risk areas, guns, money and drugs. Lt. Dan December 22, 2014, PennLive: The detective took at least 375 Percocet, oxycodone, hydrocodone, alprazolam, tramadol and lorazepam pills from the departments secure evidence room, according to charging documents. Police noticed pills were missing and called in state police to investigate. The detective was a 12-year member of the force, was the sole person responsible for keeping track of evidence, reported health problems and was caught dozing off, but wasn’t showing any signs of not being able to do his job. Derry Township, PA. Population 25K – 39 officers. December 28: LAPD announces reforms to boost accuracy of city crime statistics December 16, 2014, LA Times: Under the Los Angeles Police Department’s plan, supervisors, clerks and detectives are undergoing training to better understand how to classify crimes under federal reporting guidelines that police departments nationwide follow. And a new rule will place the onus on station supervisors to correctly classify crimes. The changes come after a Times investigation this summer that found the department reported a significant number of serious violent crimes as minor offenses. The errors artificially lowered the city’s official crime figures. September 28: Merging 12 Alabama law enforcement agencies will increase safety, save money, officials say We reported on this in previous newsletters. It will be interesting to see how this plan works out. If it is successful we may see others organizations following their lead from the state level, counties and cities for LE regionalization: Lt. Dan September 28, 2014, AL.com: MONTGOMERY, Alabama — Alabama’s massive consolidation of law enforcement agencies has been completed ahead of the Jan. 1 deadline, and the most visible sign of the merger is more patrols on the busy highways during holidays. Gov. Robert Bentley said the consolidation is good for the taxpayers. “But you may not like that if you are speeding,” he said. With Bentley’s support, the Legislature voted in 2013 to combine 12 state law enforcement agencies and set Jan. 1, 2015, as the deadline for completing the work. Bentley picked his Homeland Security director, Spencer Collier, to head the new Alabama Law Enforcement Agency. The 12 agencies combined to make the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency were: Department of Homeland Security, Department of Public Safety, Alabama Bureau of Investigation, Fusion Center, Criminal Justice Information Center, Marine Police, Alcoholic Beverage Control Board Enforcement, Department of Revenue Enforcement, Forestry Commission Investigations, Agricultural and Industry Investigations, Public Service Commission Enforcement, and Office of Prosecution Service Computer Forensics Lab. December 28: Western Nebraska Law Enforcement Cheers Colorado Pot Lawsuit December 28, 2014, CBS: LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) – Some western Nebraska law enforcement officials are cheering a new state lawsuit that seeks to thwart Colorado’s legalization of marijuana, even as Colorado vows to fight it in court. The petition filed by Nebraska and Oklahoma asks the U.S. Supreme Court to rule that Colorado’s Amendment 64 – the legalization measure approved by voters in 2012 – violates the U.S. Constitution because it contradicts federal drug laws that declare marijuana illegal. December 28: NYC Police Commissioner says cops ‘feel under attack’ from White House, Justice Department December 28, 2014, Fox News: Cops on the beat and their bosses believe they are under attack from President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder, New York City’s police commissioner said Sunday. Commissioner William Bratton said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that the president and the attorney general have to see why police have the anxieties and perceptions they have as law enforcement grapples with the fallout from the Michael Brown and Eric Garner cases. “They really do feel under attack, rank-and-file officers and much of American police leadership, that they feel they’re under attack from the federal government at the highest levels,” Bratton said. “So that’s something we need to understand also, this sense of perception that becomes a reality.” December 28: Bratton rebukes his N.Y. police officers for turning backs on mayor December 28, 2014, LA Times: New York City Police Commissioner William J. Bratton rebuked members of his department Sunday who publicly turned their backs on Mayor Bill de Blasio at a funeral for a slain police officer. December 27: De Blasio speaks at funeral; officers turn their backs December 27, 2014, USA Today: More than 10,000 police officers attended the funeral service of NYPD Officer Rafael Ramos. December 26: LAPD wrongly reclassified some serious crimes as minor, Times review finds September 25, LA Times: The Times reviewed dozens of cases the Los Angeles Police Department initially documented as serious but later downgraded to minor offenses. A third of the time, the decision to reclassify the incident was wrong, The Times concluded. When presented with the findings, LAPD officials acknowledged the errors but offered no explanation for them. December 26: U.S. police struggle to uncover threats on social media (Reuters) – U.S. law enforcement agencies are a long way from being able to effectively track threats of the kind a gunman posted on Instagram before his execution-style murder of two New York City policemen last weekend. Police need more data analytics and mining software to monitor social media sites such as Facebook (FB.O) and Twitter (TWTR.N), as well as trained personnel to make sense of what could be a deluge of data, say law enforcement officials and security experts. December 26: ACLU Finds ‘Driving While Black’ Bias in Chicago Although they are officially prohibited from racial profiling, Chicago police officers stop black drivers at a higher rate than whites, according to a study by the ACLU of Illinois reported by the Chicago Tribune. Of the more than 100,000 traffic stops made by Chicago police last year, nearly half were of black motorists, far more than their percentage of the population, according to the ACLU analysis. The numbers were even more lopsided for traffic stops of blacks in predominantly white neighborhoods, the ACLU found. December 26: Missouri’s Cost for Ferguson Security Tops $12.5M December 24, 2014, ABC News: The cost of security for protests in Ferguson and the St. Louis area following the fatal shooting of a black 18-year-old by a white police officer is estimated to be more than $12.5 million. December 26: Too Late: Cops’ Deaths Highlight Outdated Systems How does you agency communicate critical law enforcement information with your regional law enforcement partners? This may be a good candidate for a non- audit report to ensure officers in your agency receive timely critical, potentially lifesaving, information. Lt. Dan December 23, 2014, ABC News: Antiquated way police were alerted has raised questions about potential for communication lapses to hamper manhunts. NEW YORK — After Ismaaiyl Brinsley shot his ex-girlfriend and posted an online death threat against police, investigators in Maryland used modern cellphone tracking technology to follow his journey to New York City in real time. But when it came to giving the New York Police Department specifics about Brinsley, the means were markedly low-tech: a phone call and a wanted flier sent by fax. December 26: Judge: Cops can create fake profiles to lure suspects December 26, 2014, CNN: The judge ruled that the sharing of information between police and a suspect was consensual. September 26: US Sees New Urgency in Cybersecurity Threats September 26, 2014, The Crime Report: The Obama administration is increasingly concerned about a wave of digital extortion copycats in the aftermath of the cyberattack on Sony Pictures Entertainment, as the government and companies try to navigate unfamiliar territory to fortify defenses against further breaches, reports the Wall Street Journal. December 25: Driver Wanted for Obama Motorcade. Novice Welcome. Volunteers with no special training are a link in the middle of the fastest, and highest-profile, chain of vehicles in the country. They are cheaper than the Secret Service personnel or local police officers who surround them on the road. And their cargo of lowly staff members and reporters is apparently less precious. The White House declined to comment on the practice. The Secret Service defended it, saying it has been standard since at least the 1980s. December 24: Threats to New York Police Stream In After Fatal Shootings, Putting Department on Edge In the days since two New York City police officers were fatally shot in their car by a man who forecast his intentions online, threats of other attacks on the police have streamed in from 311, 911 and online postings. Investigators have scrambled to separate serious warnings from disturbing pranks. December 24: JetBlue offers to fly police to NYC for slain officers’ funerals December 24, 2014, Washington Post: JetBlue is offering police departments around the nation the opportunity to send personnel to the funerals of New York City Police Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos — free of charge December 23: Bang: The troubled legacy of toy guns Article with some interesting historical information. Lt. Dan December 20, 2014, Washington Post: The list of incidents in which police have shot kids who turned out to be wielding toys is soberingly long. Every few years, such shootings spark new agitation against toy weapons. Tamir Rice’s death renewed the focus on a toy that is designed to delight but ends up now and then confronting the nation with unsettling questions about power, commerce and the modern realities of childhood. Guns have been made for children for more than 150 years, as toys and as training tools for boys who would follow their fathers into hunting. The original Daisy air rifle, first built in 1888, was marketed door-to-door to farm families…. December 23: Bratton raises specter of return to 1970s December 22, 2014, Bratton’s comments reflect growing fears as the city is roiled by Saturday’s cold-blooded murder of Officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu in apparent retaliation for the deaths of two unarmed black men by white police officers. A Daily News analysis of NYPD numbers found 60 officers were killed by guns from 1971 to 1980. December 23: White House Task Force on 21st Century Policing Additional details on the task force: Lt. Dan December 18, 2014, White House Press Release: Today the President will sign an Executive Order to create the Task Force on 21st Century Policing and announce its members. The Task Force is part of the Administration’s efforts to strengthen community policing and strengthen trust among law enforcement officers and the communities they serve. The Task Force will be chaired by Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey, who also serves as President of the Major Cities Chiefs Police Association, and Laurie Robinson, professor of Criminology, Law and Society at George Mason University and former Assistant Attorney General for DOJ’s Office of Justice Programs. The Task Force will examine, among other issues, how to strengthen public trust and foster strong relationships between local law enforcement and the communities that they protect, while also promoting effective crime reduction. The Executive Order directs the Task Force to prepare a report and recommendations to be presented to the President. An initial report will be due to the President in March. December 21: ‘Caged Rat’: Man Shoots, Kills, Runs Over Florida Police Officer December 21: Calif. bill would create statewide standards for police body cams December 19, 2014, UT San Diego: AB 66 would create a task force “to create a comprehensive policy and best practices manual to be used by state and local law enforcement agencies” December 21: Baltimore Mayor says some officers may feel anxiety about not being ‘next Darren Wilson’ December 17, 2014, Nationwide protests after the deaths of two unarmed black men by police in Missouri and New York might cause officers to hesitate to use deadly force for fear of becoming the “next Darren Wilson,” Baltimore’s mayor said Wednesday.. Meanwhile, police unions say departments across the country are battling anxiety that could compromise officers’ safety. They called upon more police chiefs and elected leaders to vocally back officers, who have felt their public support erode even as they continue to do dangerous business protecting communities. December 21: Veteran Dallas police officer arrested on charge of sexual assault December 21, 2014, Dallas News: An arrest warrant affidavit states Kattner sexually assaulted a woman three times, but it does not state whether she is a prostitute. It states that Kattner was wearing his Dallas Police Department uniform and driving a marked police car at the time of the attack. December 21: Texas Legislature Will Take up Police Body-camera Bill December 18, 2014, San Antonio Current: Texas legislators will take up a bill next year that would provide grant funding to help Lone Star State police departments purchase body cameras. Under the proposal, to be eligible for the funds, police departments must have policy for the cameras that includes guidelines for activation, discontinuation of recording and guidelines for certain privacy situations where turning off a body camera would be appropriate. The policy must also include provisions for data retention, storage, creation of back-up files, maintenance and data security, and the policy must be consistent with Federal and Texas Rules of Evidence. December 21: Inside the Seattle Police hackathon: A substantial first step December 20, 2014, The Seattle Police Department (SPD) held its first-ever hackathon on Friday. The event was focused on a single problem: How to redact the video streams recorded by police officers from their dashcams and (soon) body-worn video cameras. More than 80 people filled the room from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. About one-third were technology professionals or part-timers like Henry Kroll, who makes a living as a salmon fisherman but focuses on video and other technology issues in his spare time. The remainder were Seattle police and other public officials, a few members of the community, and a number of people from local companies such as Amazon Web Services and Evidence.com, plus a substantial media presence from local television stations and newspapers. December 20: Gunman with possible revenge in mind kills two NYC police officers December 21, 2014, (Reuters) – A gunman ambushed and fatally shot two New York City police officers on Saturday and then killed himself, police said, and a social media post indicated it may have been in revenge for the police chokehold death of an unarmed black man December 20: Collaborative Reform Model: A Review of Use of Force Policies, Processes, and Practices in the Spokane Police Department December 19, 2014, COPS Office: Abstract: The proper investigation and review of use of force incidents, especially those involving deadly force, can have a significant impact on a police department’s legitimacy and relationship with its community. The assessment leading to this report was conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) and the CNA Corporation at the request of the Spokane (Washington) Police Department, examining the department’s policies and procedures to identify areas for improvement and provide recommendations; analyzing a sample of use of force investigations from a five-year period to identify trends, strengths, and weaknesses; examining the role of the ombudsman in use of force investigations; and improving the department’s culture as it relates to the use of force to build trust with the community. The goal of the review was ultimately to improve the use of force processes in the Spokane Police Department. Link to report: http://ric-zai-inc.com/Publications/cops-w0751-pub.pdf December 20: Police union challenges APD settlement with Dept. of Justice December 20, 2014, The Albuquerque Journal: The Albuquerque Police Officers’ Association argues in a court filing that the settlement between the Department of Justice and the city undercuts the union’s collective bargaining agreement – a position the union wants a chance to argue before a federal judge approves the DOJ settlement. December 20: 2015 Law Enforcement Officer (LEO) Locality Pay Table December 20: Interactive map said to show deaths by law enforcement December 20, 2014, USA Today: A national civil rights organization has created an interactive map provided to USA TODAY that it says shows deaths of civilians by law enforcement officers throughout the last 14 years. The map, made by the organization ColorofChange.org, uses data extracted from police agencies across the country from 2000 to 2014 and appears to show concentrations of deaths in the New York and Los Angeles areas. Link to map http://www.killedbycops.org/ December 20: FBI Asked To Investigate Honolulu Police Department For Misconduct December 20, 2014, Huffington Post: HONOLULU — The FBI has been asked to investigate how the Honolulu Police Department (HPD) handled a case involving HPD Chief Louis Kealoha, his stolen mailbox and his wife’s estranged uncle, who was accused in the crime. Gerard Puana is the uncle of Katherine Kealoha, wife of the police chief and high ranking city prosecutor. On Dec. 4, a mistrial was declared after Chief Kealoha brought up Puana’s criminal past on the witness stand December 20: Law Enforcement Is the Fattest Profession, Study Finds December 17, 2014, Times: Along with firefighters and security guards Police officers, firefighters and security guards have the highest rates of obesity of all professions, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of data from the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. December 18: Phoenix Police chief fired for insubordination December 18, 2014. AZ Central: After a tumultuous 21/2-year tenure marked by continual clashes with police unions and a recent string of high-profile controversies, embattled Phoenix Police Chief Daniel V. Garcia was fired after he defied an order from his boss and called a press conference to unload on his critics December 18: Justice Department to release Spokane Police recommendations December 18, 2014, KXLY.com: SPOKANE, Wash. – A nearly two year long investigation of the Spokane Police Department by the Department of Justice is coming to a close, and the Justice Department to release their findings later this week. The city asked the Justice Department to look into the department in the wake of Otto Zehm’s death. In March 2006, then police officer Karl Thompson subdued Zehm, a mentally disabled man, at a ZipTrip convenience store in north Spokane. Zehm later died and Thompson was subsequently convicted of violating his civil rights. That action started an in depth look at the Spokane Police Department’s policies and procedures. December 18: LA Sheriff Agrees to Oversight of Jails to Settle Abuse Suit December 16, 2014, ABC News: The nation’s largest sheriff’s department agreed to federal court oversight and will adopt a new use-of-force policy to settle a class-action lawsuit brought by jail inmates who said they were beaten by guards. The agreement, in effect a consent decree, was approved Tuesday by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. It is the latest in several efforts to reform the scandal-plagued department beset with allegations of rampant abuse by deputies, costly lawsuits and federal convictions of deputies for obstructing an FBI probe into jail beatings. Three court-appointed monitors will oversee the department and a federal judge can intervene if the sheriff fails to enforce the new policy or train officers, according to a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union, which brought the suit. December 17: ‘Hackathon’ Asks Techies to Aid Seattle PD on Sensitive-Video Issues December 17, 2014: GovTech: With police videos increasingly becoming subject to public disclosure, Seattle police are anxious to develop a fast — and inexpensive — way to go through a growing mountain of material and redact sensitive images. The issue became even more acute last month after a Seattle-area software programmer submitted 30 public-disclosure requests to the department for details on every 911 dispatch on which officers are sent; all the written reports they produce; and dash-cam videos and video collected from the soon-to-launch body-camera program. The man dropped his request after Wagers agreed to meet with him to talk about how they can get him what he wants, including frequent releases of video clips from patrol-car dash cameras. The hackathon grew out of that meeting. Seattle police say they have collected more than 1.5 million videos over the past five years, filling 364 terabytes of space. This information includes dash-cam video collected by in-car recording systems, 911 responses and interviews with victims, witnesses and suspects. Wagers said Seattle police are burning an average of 7,000 DVDs each month to meet requests from citizens as well as prosecutors and defense attorneys. That is double from last year. http://spdblotter.seattle.gov/2014/12/05/sign-up-now-for-the-first-ever-seattle-police-hackathon/ December 17: FBI Beefs Up Amid Explosion of Cybercrime December 17, 2014, GovTech: Cybercrime is one of the priorities for the FBI, which has 13,260 special agents across the country, according to the agency. December 17: Social Media Plays Key Role at Bay Area Protests December 17, 2014, GovTech: Protest leaders have long used applications like Twitter to organize protests, but they now coordinate movements, plan tactics and share videos and images in real time that police are struggling to keep up with. December 17: San Jose police officer placed on leave after controversial tweets December 17, 2014., Mercury News: SAN JOSE — For weeks, San Jose police Officer Phillip White had been using his personal Twitter account to vent displeasure over the ongoing protests in Oakland and around the country about the deaths of unarmed black men at the hands of law enforcement. But when his posts turned threatening last weekend, White learned just how far-reaching words can be on social media. The San Jose Police Department placed White on administrative leave Monday as the furor over the officer’s posts showed no signs of abating. December 17: The FBI’s fingerprint files 1944 Cool photos of FBI files in aircraft hangar. Lt. Dan These photos picture the FBI’s overflow filing system, housed during World War II in the Washington, D.C. Armory. By the early 1940s, the FBI’s archive housed more than 23 million card and 10 million fingerprint records, with 400,000 new cards added each and every month. December 17: Bill would require data on police killings December 17, 2014, The Hill: Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) has introduced legislation requiring the Justice Department to collect data on how many people are killed by police officers. December 17: L.A. County sheriff’s deputy gets 18 months in jail abuse scandal December 17, 2014, Citing the erosion of the public’s trust in the justice system, a federal judge on Monday sentenced a Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy to 18 months in prison for obstructing a grand jury investigation into abuses in the county jails. December 15: Court Rules for a Mistaken Police Officer December 15, 2014, NY Times: WASHINGTON — A police officer can stop a car based on a mistaken understanding of the law without violating the Fourth Amendment, the Supreme Court ruled on Monday in an 8-1 decision. December 15: OIJ Releases Body Worn Camera Research Publication December 15: The Office of Justice Programs just released a study assessing police officer body-warn cameras which reviews the safety efficacy and outcomes of body-warn cameras. This report could assist local police departments in justifying the purchase of these cameras December 15: DOJ Could Strengthen Procedures for Disciplining Its Attorneys December 11, 2014: NPR: GAO recommends that DOJ (1) require components to demonstrate that they have implemented discipline for misconduct and (2) establish near-term milestones for expanding PMRU’s jurisdiction to decide discipline for all attorneys with findings of misconduct.DOJ agreed with GAO’s recommendations. December 15: Former Special Agent in Charge of the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General Sentenced to More Than Three Years in Prison Interesting case where documents were forged in an attempt to mislead auditors, A reminder to “trust but Verify”, in your audit travels. Lt. Dan December 15, 2014, DOJ: A former Special Agent in Charge of the Department of Homeland Security – Office of Inspector General (DHS-OIG) was sentenced to 37 months in prison today for a scheme to falsify records and obstruct an internal DHS-OIG inspection, announced Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs of the FBI’s San Antonio Field Office. The sentence was imposed by U.S. District Judge Andrew S. Hanen of the Southern District of Texas. “While leading an office responsible for investigating misconduct at other government agencies, Pedraza sought to impede and obstruct the investigation of his own office,” said Assistant Attorney General Caldwell. “Pedraza’s criminal conduct resulted in the premature closing of criminal cases without resolution, potentially endangering our national security and allowing others to escape justice. We will root out and prosecute corruption wherever it may be found, including within the ranks of federal law enforcement.” December 15: CA. Prison realignment changing law enforcement December 13,2014, VV Daily Presss: It’s been three years since California legislators passed Assembly Bill 109, a prison realignment measure that aimed to reduce state prison overcrowding by mandating that some convicted felons serve time in county jails or be released to the supervision of county probation departments.The bill also extended PC 4019 to county jails, meaning that inmates convicted of non-violent crimes would serve only half of their sentence if they maintained good behavior.The results have been bemoaned by law enforcement and city leaders, and have altered policing — perhaps forever. December 15: Concerns Raised Over Shrill Device New York Police Used During Garner Protests December 12, 2014: Amid police warnings for protesters to stay off the streets or risk arrest last week, a distinctly different and piercing sound could be heard. The loud beeps came from a long-range acoustic device, a piece of equipment that can shriek repetitive blasts of noise at a volume of up to 152 decibels. December 15: Georgia Woman Gets $100K Over Her Arrest For Cursing At Police December 12, 2014, NPR: “We can’t say on the radio what she said to them,” George reports, “but she cursed at the officers and gave them the finger. They arrested and jailed her and kept her in solitary confinement overnight.” Not satisfied after the charges against her were dismissed in 2013, Barnes filed a lawsuit, saying the Cobb County Police Department officers had violated her constitutional rights. December 15: NYC police union wants de Blasio banned from funerals December 14, 204, New York City’s rank-and-file police union is urging cops to tell Mayor Bill de Blasio not to attend their funerals in the event that they are killed in the line of duty. The Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association posted a link on its website telling members not to let de Blasio and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito “insult their sacrifice” should they be killed. The union posted a “Don’t Insult My Sacrifice” waiver officers can sign requesting the two politicians not attend their funerals due to their “consistent refusal to show police officers the support and respect they deserve.” December 11: Police officers across U.S. upset at being seen as brutal racists December 11, 2014, McClatchydc.com: Many police think they’re being stereotyped as racist and brutal. “The idea that police wake up, strap on their guns and pin on their badges and sit around thinking about how they’re going to make lives miserable in the minority community – that’s just at variance with common sense,” said James Pasco, the executive director of the Fraternal Order of Police, a national labor union representing rank-and-file officers. December 10: Oversight of Sheriff’s Department Approved December 10, 2014, Los Angeles County supervisors voted Tuesday to create a civilian commission to oversee the scandal-plagued Sheriff’s Department. Supervisors voted 3-2 to in favor of the panel to review and provide recommendations on the operation of the department that patrols unincorporated areas of the county and several suburbs while running the nation’s largest jail system. December 10: Arpaio requests $14M to comply with racial-profiling order December 10, 2014. AZCentral: Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio and his staff outlined the agency’s budget for the next year and asked the county Board of Supervisors to continue giving an extra $14 million to bring the Sheriff’s Office into compliance with a federal court’s racial-profiling order. December, 10: Denver student protesters cheered when car struck officer, union official says December 5, 2014, FOX News: Denver high school students protesting recent civilian deaths involving police chanted “Hit him again!” after a car struck four bicycle officers – injuring one critically – Wednesday night, the city’s police union charged. December 10: Crime-Victim Aid Groups Getting Windfall In Big Congressional Budget Deal December 10, 2014, The Crime Report: Crime-victim organizations around the U.S. will be major beneficiaries from the budget deal agreed on by leaders of Congress to run the federal government through next September. The measure includes an increase in the limit on federal spending for victims from $745 million to $2.36 billion, a near quadrupling of the available funds. By law, all fines paid in federal criminal cases are set aside to help crime victims but Congress has severely limited the spending. About $3.5 billion was paid into the fund in the last year but victims could benefit from only a small fraction of that because of the cap, says Steve Derene of the National Association of VOCA Assistance Administrators, which represents agencies that oversee spending for crime victims. December 10: Chicago Police Department Unveils Upgraded Website CHICAGO (CBS) — The Chicago Police Department took the wraps off its new website Monday morning. WBBM’s Bernie Tafoya reports the new Chicago Police website, ChicagoPolice.org, brings the department more into the 21st century after appearing to lag behind other major departments in the digital age. December 10: Cincinnati cops to get body cameras December 8, 2014, Cincinati.com: A test period for body cameras by Cincinnati police officers is over, and Chief Jeffrey Blackwell said it was so successful he wants all of the force’s 600 uniformed officers to wear cameras. December 10: Atlanta police want 1,200 body cams December 10, 2014, Clatl.com: The Atlanta Police Department is working on a pitch to buy some 1,200 body cameras to be worn by police officers, at a cost in the millions of dollars. “The plan is to have every uniformed officer deployed with a camera,” said APD Chief George Turner at a presentation to an Atlanta City Council committee Tuesday evening. He’s hoping to equip officers with the devices in the first quarter of 2015. December 10: Anonymous says it took down Oakland police, city websites December 10, 2014, The online hacker collective known as Anonymous seems to have claimed responsibility for a cyberattack that apparently disabled several websites connected to the city of Oakland.. December 10: Seattle Police holding first-ever hackathon to help improve video redaction process December 5, 2014, Geekwire: The Seattle Police Department is preparing to release large amounts of video from patrol car cameras and it needs your help in doing so. The SPD is holding its first-ever hackathon on Dec. 19 and is asking developers to create software that quickly redacts faces, audio, and/or license plates from millions of videos on its servers in order to stay within Washington’s privacy laws. “With 1,612,554 videos already on our servers — and more on the way through our upcoming body cam pilot program — our department is looking for a better, faster way redact those videos and make them accessible as public records,” the SPD wrote. December 10: What police need to know about FBI NextGen ID December 8, 2014, policeone: Called Next Generation Identification, or NextGen, the new system offers search methods and records tracking never before possible December 9: Is America ready for the true cost of police reform? December 9, 2014, Police One: Protesters across the country have been shouting for “police reform.” But do they really know what truly reforming American law enforcement would entail — what it would cost? Do they know what they themselves would first need to bring to the table? Some people calling for changes in policing probably have a handle on the answers to those questions, but I contend that many do not. Here are six things that politicians and protesters need to know about what they’d need to do to enable the changes they want in law enforcement. December 9: Is media coverage making police work more difficult? December 9, 2014, LEO Affairs: By Brett Gillin: In light of the recent glut of stories covering police-involved deaths and the protests they spark, some are asking if the media’s coverage of these events is making it harder for police to do their jobs. Simply turn on the 24-hour news coverage of certain stations (CNN and MSNBC to name just a couple) and you’re likely to be inundated with images and videos of police officers in confrontations with suspects. In fact, at the time of this writing, CNN has no less than 8 separate stories covering the Eric Garner protests and other stories which may be interpreted as putting police in a negative light. December 9: L.A. County Sheriff Could Curb In-Car Computers Lt Patrick Hunter quoted in this article is a graduate of the LEIAC course, great job Pat! Lt Dan. The agency’s assistant sheriffs last week approved a series of far-reaching policy recommendations that, if implemented, would be the department’s first explicit restrictions on such devices. “We hope to … address aggressively the issue of distracted driving and return the focus of the drivers back to the motor vehicles,” said Lt. Patrick Hunter, the corrective action lieutenant for the department’s Risk Management Bureau. “We think the deputies will be safer, that they will be better, more defensive drivers, and in the long run we think it’s safer for the motoring public.” December 9: Urban Blacks in U.S. Have Little Confidence in Police December 9, 2014, Gallup: PRINCETON, N.J. — As controversy continues to swirl about police officers’ treatment of blacks, an analysis of Gallup data underscores how much less likely U.S. blacks are than whites or Hispanics to express confidence in the police. The analysis also reveals that blacks living in urban areas are significantly less likely than blacks in non-urban areas to say they are confident in the police. December 9: Police: Chokehold Victim Complicit in Own Death December 5, 2014, ABC News: Eric Garner was overweight and in poor health. He was a nuisance to shop owners who complained about him selling untaxed cigarettes on the street. When police came to arrest him, he resisted. And if he could repeatedly say, “I can’t breathe,” it means he could breathe. Rank-and-file New York City police officers and their supporters have been making such arguments even before a grand jury decided against charges in Garner’s death, saying the possibility that he contributed to his own demise has been drowned out in the furor over race and law enforcement. Officers say the outcry has left them feeling betrayed and demonized by everyone from the president and the mayor to throngs of protesters who scream at them on the street. December 8: New US guidelines ban profiling by federal law enforcement; airport, border screening exempt December 8, 2014, FOX, News: WASHINGTON – The Obama administration issued guidelines Monday that ban federal law enforcement from profiling on the basis of religion, national origin and other characteristics, protocols the Justice Department hopes could be a model for local departments as the nation tackles questions about the role race plays in policing. The policy, which expands decade-old guidelines established under the Bush administration, also will require new training and data collection. Civil rights advocates said they welcomed the broader protections, but were disappointed that the guidelines will exempt security screening in airports and border checkpoints and won’t be binding on local and state police agencies. December 8: FBI Releases 2013 Hate Crime Statistics December 8, 2014, FBI National Press Office December 7: No Body Cameras for Boston Police, Says Commissioner December 7, 2014, Boston.com: Boston Police Commissioner William Evans has doubts about the use of police body cameras . He explained his hesitation to bring the devices to Boston during a Sunday interview with WBZ political analyst Jon Keller. “No one’s going to want to approach us and say, ‘Hey, they’re dealing drugs over there,’ or, ‘Hey, I got a tip on that shooting,’ because they’re afraid they will be on camera,” Evans said. December 7: LAPD detective found dead after molestation accusations December 7, 2014, LOS ANGELES (KABC) — A Los Angeles Police Department detective, who faced accusations of molesting two relatives, has taken his own life, authorities said. The Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office confirmed that Detective Dennis Derr was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in his car in a Walmart parking lot in Palmdale on Thanksgiving morning. December 5: New L.A. County supervisors poised to back sheriff’s oversight panel September 5, 2014, LA Times: In a significant shift in policy, a majority on the newly configured Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors now supports creation of a civilian oversight commission for the embattled Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.. December 5: Department of Justice reports on Fayetteville Police December 2: FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. – Tuesday night the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) released a preliminary report on how the public perceives the police department in Fayetteville. A different DOJ office is also reviewing the Fayetteville Police Department. The Community Oriented Policing Services is looking at the police department’s policies and procedures, including use of force. The police department announced the partnership for that review in October. Police Chief Harold Medlock requested both reviews. December 5: Eric Holder: Cleveland police engaged in pattern of excessive force December 4, 2014, CBS: Attorney General Eric Holder announced Thursday that “there is reasonable cause to believe that the Cleveland Division of Police engages in a pattern and practice of using excessive force,” after Justice Department investigators examined nearly 600 cases of use of force that occurred between 2010 and 2013. Holder went on to say that Cleveland and the Justice Department had agreed on a statement of principles that will lead to a consent decree. December 5: New York Mayor, police union officials clash after grand jury decision in Eric Garner’s death December 4, 2014, Washington Post: Tensions between New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and some in the city’s police force came into full view Thursday, as police union officials accused the mayor of throwing the department “under the bus” in his response to a grand jury’s decision to not indict a white officer in Eric Garner’s killing. “Police officers feel like they are being thrown under the bus,” Patrick J. Lynch, president of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, said at a Thursday press conference. “Look, last night, the protesters — we may not agree with their message, but we were protecting their right to do it. That’s what they should be saying.” December 5, 2014, IACP President Richard Beary appeared on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal to discuss community-police relations and President Obama’s newly announced Task Force on 21st Century Policing. December 5: Phoenix Police Shooting Is Latest to Ignite Outcry December 5, 2014, AP: The deadly shooting of a black, unarmed drug suspect by a white Phoenix police officer who mistook a pill bottle for a gun demonstrates the challenges law enforcement agencies face at a time of unrest over police tactics. Phoenix police say the officer feared the suspect was armed during their struggle, but some critics say the officer went too far. Despite the department’s efforts to be transparent with information, protesters marched Thursday night against the fatal shooting of 34-year-old Rumain Brisbon. About 150 took part in the march through the streets of downtown Phoenix to police headquarters, while also calling for an end to what they say is a nationwide epidemic of police brutality. December 2: McDonnell Sworn In As 32nd Sheriff of LA County December 1, 2014, LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Jim McDonnell was sworn in Monday as head of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. McDonnell is a 29-year veteran of the LAPD and most recently was chief of the Long Beach Police Department. He is the first outsider to take over the department in more than a century. December 2: Phila. police to test body cameras for six months December 2, 2014, Philly.com: The Philadelphia Police Department launched a pilot body-camera program Monday in which more than two dozen officers will wear the cameras while on duty for six months. It’s a move that Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey has been advocating for months, and one that department officials say will increase transparency and “build community trust.” December 2: Navajo Nation president signs landmark law enforcement legislation December 2, 2014, (Reuters) – The president of the Navajo Nation signed an amendment to the tribal code on Monday reinstating stiffer jail sentences and fines for some non-violent crimes that have often gone unpunished on the reservation over the past decade. December 1: Obama seeks $263 million for training, body cameras for local police December 1, 2014, President Obama is ordering up new rules for giving local police agencies access to surplus U.S. military equipment such as the armored vehicles, assault rifles and body armor that police in Ferguson, Mo., used in an unsuccessful attempt to quiet protests this summer.. Obama is also proposing a three-year, $263-million spending package to expand training and increase the use of body-worn cameras for monitoring police interactions with the public. The proposal includes $75 million that would provide matching funds for purchasing as many as 50,000 cameras. Such cameras might have provided more information in the deadly August shooting of an unarmed black 18-year-old by a white Ferguson police officer. December 1: Chicago police to begin testing body cameras on officers in 60 days December 1, 2014, Chicago police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said Monday that the department would begin testing body cameras on officers within about 60 days as part of a pilot project.. McCarthy offered few specifics at a news conference called to highlight crime statistics, but he made it clear he backs the test. December 1: Costs climbing toward $1 million for Denver sheriff reform December 1, 2014, Denver Post: The tab for reforming the Denver Sheriff Department is pushing $1 million as the city hires multiple consultants and special investigators to deal with the fallout of excessive-force cases that already have cost millions in legal payouts. At this point, it’s impossible to figure out how much the costs eventually will total because at least two consultants have base contracts that allow them to bill the city for travel and other expenses. November 30: Denver cops more likely to shoot minorities than whites November 25, 2014, The Losing Ground project by I-News at Rocky Mountain PBS showed widening disparities, including college graduation rates, between Colorado’s blacks and Latinos and their white counterparts. November 30: Former Newport Police Detective Captain earns prison sentence November 29, 2014, Knoxville Daily Sun: KNOXVILLE, TN — On Nov. 24, 2014, James Finley Holt, 59, of Cosby, Tenn., was sentenced by the Honorable J. Ronnie Greer, U.S. District Judge to serve 90 months in prison after pleading guilty to distribution of controlled substances and possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking. At the time of his criminal activity, Holt was on duty as a detective captain with the Newport Police Department. Holt had been charged with 8 counts of money laundering along with 16 other criminal counts. November 30: Cleveland police officers accuse department of racial discrimination in wake of deadly chase November 29, 2014: CLEVELAND, Ohio — Nine non-African American Cleveland police officers accused the police department of racial discrimination in the aftermath of the deadly Nov. 29, 2012 chase in a federal lawsuit filed late Friday. The officers – eight white officers and one Hispanic – claim the department has a history of treating non-black officers who shoot black residents “more harshly” than black officers involved in shootings, according to the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court Northern District of Ohio Friday November 30, How to Measure the Performance Measurements November 25, 2014, PA Times: Measuring performance in government is challenging. We need to consider the metrics, the performance contributing to the metrics and the outcomes of the performance. As examples, we will look at performance measurement in education and law enforcement. November 30: New ‘SWAT’ app to witness police interactions November 28, 2014, LEO Affairs: Two college students have invented a cell phone application that they say they was at least in part inspired by the events occurring in Ferguson, Missouri, and other incidents of the perceived use of excessive force by law enforcement officers. The app, ironically-named SWAT, will give users who witnessed police incidents the ability to stream live video from their smart phones to the application’s servers. Once there, “SWAT team” members can then disseminate a copy to the proper authorities. Use of SWAT’s secure connection is intended to protect the anonymity of the witnesses and encourage frequent reporting. November 30: New York Police Dept. Aims to Curb Officers’ Cursing November 26, 2014, NY Times: Most New York City police officers may not grow up cursing. But many learn the lingo, or perfect it, on the streets and then use it in encounters with civilians. That is the view of the Police Department’s new head of training, Michael A. Julian, a lawyer and a former top chief who is moving to purge profanity from the vocabulary of the 22,000 police officers on patrol. Of the 4,222 complaints lodged with the Civilian Complaint Review Board through October, roughly 37 percent included an allegation of discourtesy, or cursing; most of those also included allegations of other misconduct. Offensive language by officers, another category the agency tracks, includes slurs, derogatory remarks or gestures based on religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity, religion, gender or disability. Complaints in that category had risen to 416 through October, compared with 410 during the same period a year ago. November 30: Inventory of military gear acquired by N.J. police provides new ammunition for critics Apparently the folks in New Jersey did not read the article we posted on the 28th, regarding the feds waning interest in this issue. Lt. Dan November 30, 2014, NJ.Com: Police agencies nationwide have long had access to a trove of surplus military gear given away by the Pentagon—everything from unwanted office computers and furniture, to machine guns and grenade launchers—and 155 law enforcement agencies in New Jersey have taken advantage of the free giveaway over the years. The state Attorney General’s office, however, steadfastly refused to disclose just which police departments received battlefield rifles, combat knives, or armored vehicles under the program—citing security concerns. But a fuller picture of the program has emerged revealing that a lot of heavy firepower went to many New Jersey police departments, both big and small, after the Attorney General—in response to a public records request by a state legislator—agreed recently to release a full list showing the disposition of all surplus military equipment in the state. November 29: Darren Wilson, Officer in Ferguson Shooting, Resigns From Police Dept. November 29, 2014, NY Times: The officer, Darren Wilson, who had worked in the department since 2011, submitted a resignation letter, said Neil J. Bruntrager, the lawyer. In the letter, first published in The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Mr. Wilson said: “It was my hope to continue in police work, but the safety of other police officers and the community are of paramount importance to me. It is my hope that my resignation will allow the community to heal.” November 29: Police chiefs: Law enforcement must learn from Ferguson November 29, 2014, The Hill: Former New York police commissioner Bernard Kerik and deputy Dallas police chief Malik Aziz on Sunday criticized the police response to social unrest in Ferguson and said it failed to anticipate a volatile situation. November 28: Debate fades on militarization of law enforcement November 25, 2014, MSNBC: That said, over the summer, there was a fair amount of interest in one specific area: the militarization of local law enforcement. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) chaired a Senate hearing in September, and reforms to the Pentagon’s “1033” program were endorsed by some Republicans, including Sens. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.). In the House, Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) drafted legislation. So what happened? Part of the problem is the political world’s short attention span. November 28: UN Watchdog Condemns Police Brutality in USA It’s interesting; with all that’s going on in the world the UN has time to comment on US domestic issues. Lt. Dan November 28, 2014, VOANews: GENEVA— The U.N. Committee Against Torture has condemned reported police brutality and excessive use of force in the United States, especially against minority groups. The 10-member watchdog committee’s report, released Friday, urged U.S. authorities to crack down on perpetrators and punish those suspected of torture or ill treatment. November 28: The physical evidence in the Michael Brown case supported the officer November 28, 2014, In the wake of the Michael Brown grand jury decision, several blog posts (including one by me Wednesday) have dissected Officer Darren Wilson’s testimony. Read by itself, different people can draw differing conclusions about whether it is accurate or not. But what hasn’t been widely discussed is whether the physical evidence confirms or contradicts his story. Perhaps the reason for this disinterest in the ballistics report, autopsies and other similar information is that for at least some of Brown’s supporters the facts are, apparently, largely irrelevant because Brown is a metaphorical “symbol” of injustice regardless of what actually happened. A related reason may be that working through this information is time-consuming — and thus beyond the capacity of many commentators. In contrast, the grand jury painstakingly heard sworn testimony from more than 60 witnesses, which is now collected in several thousand pages of transcripts. Reviewing these transcripts reveals some important and essentially indisputable facts. And those facts confirm many critical aspects of Wilson’s account. November 28: Anonymous ‘Requester’ Turns Police Body Camera Programs Upside Down I posted information regarding this issue a few days ago, but this article has additional information. Lt. Dan November 25, 2014, Govt. Tech: As citizens nationwide protest following the no-indict ruling in the Ferguson, Mo., shooting, police in Washington state wonder if their public records laws will prevent the adoption of body camera technology that could keep such a confusing scenario from happening again. November 25: Website detailing Dallas police shootings goes live November 25, 2014, The Dallas Police Department’s new website detailing 12 years of shootings by police went live Tuesday. Police officials had promised that the mini-website would go up by the end of the month, but the release comes as a grand jury’s decision not to indict an officer for a fatal shooting in Ferguson, Mo., has sparked national attention. Local activists have promised protests Tuesday evening outside of Dallas police headquarters. Link to website: November 25: FBI Releases 2013 Statistics on Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted November 24, 2014, FBI Press release: According to statistics collected by the FBI, 76 law enforcement officers were killed in line-of-duty incidents in 2013. Of these, 27 law enforcement officers died as a result of felonious acts, and 49 officers died in accidents. In addition, 49,851 officers were victims of line-of-duty assaults. Comprehensive data tables about these incidents and brief narratives describing the fatal attacks and selected assaults resulting in injury are included in the 2013 edition of Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted, released today. November 25: Portland police chief orders officers to remove Facebook posts with ‘I AM DARREN WILSON’ over their badge November 25, 2014, Oregon Live: Portland Police Chief Mike Reese on Monday ordered several officers to take down images posted on their Facebook pages of the Police Bureau’s badge covered with the words “I AM DARREN WILSON.” “The image displayed does not represent this organization and was very inflammatory in nature,” Reese said in a statement. “Officers certainly have a right to have and express their opinions but not using an official badge of the Portland Police Bureau. The badge represents all members of the organization, past and present, and is an important symbol in our community that must not be tarnished. I’ve asked the Professional Standards Division to review this matter for possible policy violations.” November 25: Right-to-carry gun laws linked to increase in violent crime, Stanford research shows November 14, 2014, Stanford News: Stanford research reaffirms that right-to-carry gun laws are connected with an increase in violent crime. This debunks – with the latest empirical evidence – earlier claims that more guns actually lead to less crime. November 25: Racial gap in U.S. arrest rates: November 19, 204, USA Today: Those disparities are easier to measure than they are to explain. They could be a reflection of biased policing; they could just as easily be a byproduct of the vast economic and educational gaps that persist across much of the USA — factors closely tied to crime rates. In other words, experts said, the fact that such disparities exist does little to explain their causes. “That does not mean police are discriminating. But it does mean it’s worth looking at. It means you might have a problem, and you need to pay attention,” said University of Pittsburgh law professor David Harris, a leading expert on racial profiling. November 24: Grand Jury Does Not Charge Ferguson Officer in Michael Brown Shooting November 24, 2014, NY Times: CLAYTON, Mo. — A St. Louis County grand jury has brought no criminal charges against Darren Wilson, a white police officer who fatally shot Michael Brown, an unarmed African-American teenager, more than three months ago in nearby Ferguson. November 24, 2014: Statement of IACP President Richard Beary “At this crucial time, it is imperative that law enforcement and community leaders, both in Missouri and throughout the United States, make every effort to reduce tensions and ensure a peaceful and lawful response to today’s decision. Only by working together to create a constructive dialogue can law enforcement and community leaders establish effective police-community partnerships that are at the heart of safe communities. To assist in this effort, the IACP has created an online resource for building sustainable community trust. I urge both law enforcement and community leaders to take advantage of these resources as they strive to reduce tensions and work together to build strong police-community partnerships.” The IACP Resource Page can be found here: http://www.theiacp.org/CommunityPoliceRelations November 24: FBI investigating Cleveland city website attack by hacker Anonymous after 12-year-old boy shot by police November 24, 2014, CLEVELAND, Ohio – The FBI is investigating a cyber attack that shut down the city of Cleveland’s website Monday. The hacker group Anonymous took credit for the attack, claiming it was a response to the Saturday police shooting of Tamir Rice, who was shot and fatally injured while carrying an airsoft gun in a park outside Cudell Recreation Center. November 23 Married SDPD Officers Plead Guilty to Drug Charges November 19, 2014, NBC San Diego: Two married San Diego Police officers have pleaded guilty to all drug charges against them, including burglarizing homes while on duty and running a hydrocodone distribution network in the county. Bryce Charpentier, 32, and Jennifer Charpentier, 41, admitted Wednesday to selling and furnishing a narcotic substance, possession of a firearm by an addict, conspiracy to commit a burglary and conspiracy to commit a crime: possession and sale of a controlled substance. As a result, the two resigned from the SDPD, effective Wednesday. November 23: San Francisco Police Department Selects AXON Body Cameras and EVIDENCE.com From TASER November 18, 2014, Market Watch: Taser today announced the purchase of 160 AXON body-worn video cameras and a multi-year subscription to EVIDENCE.com by the San Francisco Police Department. This order was received in the fourth quarter of 2014 and is expected to ship in the fourth quarter of 2014. The San Francisco Police Department tested several cameras as part of a pilot program to help increase transparency and efficiency with managing their digital evidence. TASER’s AXON cameras and EVIDENCE.com technology was selected as the best solution to further the department’s goal of ensuring public trust as well as managing their digital evidence in the most secure and cost-effective manner. November 23: Baltimore residents demand tougher laws on police officers at hearing November 22, 2014, Baltimore Sun: With the next General Assembly starting in January, more than 100 community members demanded Saturday that state lawmakers toughen laws holding police officers more accountable for misconduct.. During a public hearing on Saturday at the University of Baltimore, residents urged members of Baltimore City’s House delegation to revise Maryland’s law enforcement Bill of Rights, which some say is too protective of officers, and to give more power to the city’s police civilian review board so it has a greater role in disciplining officers. November 22: Police Discipline Under Scrutiny Nationwide As MO Grand Jury Meets November 22, 2014, The Crime Report: Police discipline is being scrutinized in cities around the U.S. as oversight officials question the rate at which officers fired for misconduct are returned to the force, the Wall Street Journal reports. Last week, an oversight panel in Philadelphia called for a review of the police disciplinary process after finding that 19 of 26 officers fired over a five-year period had their discharges overturned in arbitration. The week before, the mayor of Seattle made changes after a string of police-misconduct findings were overturned. A federal judge overseeing mandated police reforms in Oakland, Ca., ordered a probe into the same issue. The scrutiny comes as a grand jury is set to decide whether to file criminal charges against a Ferguson, Mo., police officer in the fatal shooting of unarmed teen Michael Brown. November 22: Reporters Committee appeals FOIA denial for video from D.C. police body cams – November 20, 2014, Reporters Committee appeals FOIA denial for video from D.C. police body cams The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press has appealed a denial by the Washington, D.C., police department for video footage from the first two days its officers began wearing “body cams” as part of a six-month pilot program, which had been touted as a means to greater transparency. The Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) at first extended the 10-day reply deadline specified under D.C.’s Freedom of Information Act. It later denied access to all 128 body-worn camera (BWC) videos from Oct. 1-2 in their entirety, claiming that it is unable to redact “the faces, names, and other identifying information regarding arrestees, suspects, victims, and witnesses are exempt from disclosure as unwarranted invasions of personal privacy” under D.C. law. The “MPD’s claimed inability to redact BWC footage is both implausible and legally unacceptable,” the Reporters Committee argued in its appeal. “As a practical matter, the position taken by the MPD means that — despite being public records subject to the D.C. FOIA — BWC videos are not, and will not, be accessible to the public. – November 22: NTSB: Gov’t aircraft regulations apply to drones November 18, 2014, WASHINGTON (AP) — The government has the power to hold drone operators accountable when they operate the remote-control aircraft recklessly, a federal safety board ruled Tuesday in a setback to small drone operators chafing under Federal Aviation Administration restrictions. November 21: Seattle PD cuts a deal with mass-video requestor, institutes “hack-a-thon” November 21, 2014, arstechnica: A computer programmer whose massive public records request threatened Seattle’s plan to put body cameras on its police officers has made peace with the police department. Today’s Seattle Times reports that Seattle Police Department COO Mike Wagers has invited the man into police headquarters to meet with him and tech staff to discuss how he could receive video regularly. As a condition of the meeting, he has dropped the public records request. November 21: Activists Wield Search Data to Challenge and Change Police Policy November 20, 2014, NY Times: DURHAM, N.C. — One month after a Latino youth died from a gunshot as he sat handcuffed in the back of a police cruiser here last year, 150 demonstrators converged on Police Headquarters, some shouting “murderers” as baton-wielding officers in riot gear fired tear gas. The police say the youth shot himself with a hidden gun. But to many residents of this city, which is 40 percent black, the incident fit a pattern of abuse and bias against minorities that includes frequent searches of cars and use of excessive force. In one case, a black female Navy veteran said she was beaten by an officer after telling a friend she was visiting that the friend did not have to let the police search her home. After having initially rejected protesters’ demands, the city abruptly changed course and agreed to require the police, beginning last month, to obtain written consent to search vehicles in cases where they do not have probable cause. The consent forms, in English and Spanish, tell drivers they do not have to allow the searches. “Without the data, nothing would have happened,” said Steve Schewel, a Durham City Council member who had pushed for the change. November 21: A police wife fears for family, fights for department November 19, Fox News: FERGUSON, MO (KTVI) – Wives and children of many police officers are in virtual hiding, as some face assault and death threats. Fox Files investigator Chris Hayes talked with the wife of a Ferguson officer who said she`s not leaving town, because she fears people aren`t hearing the whole truth about her husband`s Department. November 21: DOJ abolishes APD’s repeat offender unit November 19, 2014, MSN.com: The Albuquerque Police Department’s repeat offender team is gone as a part of new reforms ordered by the U.S. Department of Justice. New Report: November 21: U.S. Justice Dept collects record $24 billion in penalties in fiscal 2014 November 19, 2014, (Reuters) – The U.S. Department of Justice collected a record $24.7 billion in penalties from fraud and other cases in fiscal year 2014, the agency said on Wednesday, as fines against banks for financial misconduct soared. Collections from civil and criminal actions, including money collected on behalf of other agencies, was $8 billion in 2013, and $13 billion in 2012. November 21: Dallas Group Files a Complaint with the Department of Justice Against City, DPD for Police Brutality November 19, 2014, Dallas Observer: On Thursday, a Dallas community organization will file a formal complaint with the Department of Justice against Dallas and its police department for fostering what the group sees as an environment in which police officers can kill blacks and Hispanics without fear of consequences. The complaint is the product of months of work from members of Dallas Communities Organizing for Change and its lawyer, Shayan Elahi. Link to report: http://www.scribd.com/doc/239459658/DCOC-Report-on-Dallas-Officer-Involved-Shootings-2013 November 21: Activists Wield Search Data to Challenge and Change Police Policy November 20, 2014, NY Times: DURHAM, N.C. — One month after a Latino youth died from a gunshot as he sat handcuffed in the back of a police cruiser here last year, 150 demonstrators converged on Police Headquarters, some shouting “murderers” as baton-wielding officers in riot gear fired tear gas. The police say the youth shot himself with a hidden gun. But to many residents of this city, which is 40 percent black, the incident fit a pattern of abuse and bias against minorities that includes frequent searches of cars and use of excessive force. In one case, a black female Navy veteran said she was beaten by an officer after telling a friend she was visiting that the friend did not have to let the police search her home. After having initially rejected protesters’ demands, the city abruptly changed course and agreed to require the police, beginning last month, to obtain written consent to search vehicles in cases where they do not have probable cause. The consent forms, in English and Spanish, tell drivers they do not have to allow the searches. “Without the data, nothing would have happened,” said Steve Schewel, a Durham City Council member who had pushed for the change. November 21: Former Las Cruces Detective Sentenced to Nine Years for Sexually Assaulting Police Department Intern November 19, 2014, DOJ Press Release: Michael Garcia, 38, a former detective with the Las Cruces Police Department (LCPD) in Las Cruces, New Mexico, was sentenced today for violating the civil rights of an LCPD student intern. Garcia was sentenced to nine years in prison followed by five years of supervised release. Garcia also was ordered to forfeit his law enforcement certification and comply with federal and state sex offender registration requirements. November 19: Portland police to hire six civilian analysts to help meet federal Justice Department mandates Example of the cost of oversight. Lt Dan November 19, 2014, Oregon Live: Portland police are planning to hire six civilian analysts to help the bureau comply with a wide range of new reporting requirements that are part of the city’s settlement with the federal Department of Justice. The City Council last week approved $351,152 for the Police Bureau to hire the analysts for a six-month period, from January to June 30, according to Christina Owen, of the city’s budget office. The money came from the city’s fall bump, and bureau would have to ask for additional funds in its next budget to support the positions. November 19: ACLU goes back to court over right to record law enforcement during Ferguson protests “Despite the written agreement, the policy or custom of interfering with individuals who are photographing or recording at public places but who are not obstructing or threatening the safety of others or physically interfering with law enforcement persists,” the ACLU stated in Friday’s motion, which emphasizes the First Amendment rights of the press. November 19: Police Pull Cruisers from Street for Safety Checks in Wake of Car Fire November 18, 2014: The Philadelphia Police Department pulled nearly 300 police cruisers (Impalas) from service last week for safety checks after an officer’s car went up in flames following a car crash. November 19: Denver police accused of abusing academy recruits November 18, 2014, KDVR.com: DENVER — Since 2008, Denver police officers have been accused of excessive force at least 1,300. Only eight of those cases resulted in the termination or suspension of the officer. A window into the disconnect between what the public views as “excessive” and what the Denver Police Department determines is acceptable may be in how new recruits are trained. November 19: Washington, D.C., approves landmark civil asset forfeiture law If you have been following our post regarding this issue, you probably have noticed that groups as well as the media are looking at this issue. This may be getting more attention and is a good opportunity to ensure your agency is spending their forfeiture funds responsibly. Lt. Dan November 18. 2014, (Reuters) – District of Columbia lawmakers approved legislation on Tuesday that makes it harder for police to seize assets from people who are not ultimately charged with crimes, a bill that backers say is a model for the rest of the country. The measure approved unanimously by Washington City Council prevents assets taken by police from going to the department, and instead earmarks them for the U.S. capital’s general fund. Washington police have been criticized for earmarking $2.7 million for a “special purpose fund” in anticipated proceeds from future civil seizures. Police Chief Cathy Lanier said in a statement the department did not consider the funds as part of its budget. She said the money was used to augment “confidential fund programs (witness protection, rewards for information in homicides).” November 18: Unions urge ouster of Phoenix police chief November 17, 2014, AZCentral: Phoenix police unions on Monday jointly called for a vote of “no confidence” for Phoenix Police Chief Daniel V. Garcia, a rarely used device to signal unrest among officers and to urge the ouster of the department’s leader. The vote was spurred by the suicide of former Officer Craig Tiger, who was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and later fired for a DUI, but union officials say Tiger’s death is symptomatic of a larger pattern of low morale among the rank and file and a culture of “tyrannical” leadership by Garcia. November 18: Top Management and Performance Challenges Facing the Department of Justice – 2014 They are
- Addressing the Persisting Crisis in the Federal Prison System;
- Safeguarding National Security Consistent with Civil Rights and Liberties;
- Enhancing Cybersecurity in an Era of Ever-Increasing Threats;
- Effectively Implementing Performance-Based Management;
- Ensuring Effective and Efficient Oversight of Law Enforcement Programs;
- Upholding the Highest Standards of Integrity and Public Service; and
- Protecting Taxpayer Funds from Mismanagement and Misuse.
November 17: Denver auditor launches investigation of troubled sheriff’s department November 17, 2014, Denver Post: The Denver auditor has launched an investigation into the embattled Denver Sheriff Department, which already is facing scrutiny from outside consultants hired amid excessive-force scandals. Auditor Dennis Gallagher expects to complete his review of the sheriff’s department in March 2015, Denis Berckefeldt, the auditor’s spokesman, said Monday. The audit, which will focus on the disciplinary process, began in October. November 17: Family First: Spending Quality Time With Your Loved Ones November 11, 2014, In Public Safety: One thing I have learned throughout my years in law enforcement is that, whatever change you go through on the job—whether you change jobs, transfer units, or retire—the one constant in your life will be your family….. November 17: Baltimore to create online database of police brutality lawsuits November 13, Baltimore officials will begin this month posting the outcomes of all civil lawsuits alleging police brutality and will reconsider their policy of requiring plaintiffs to keep silent after settlements are reached — part of a series of changes made in response to a six-month Baltimore Sun investigation of police misconduct. City Solicitor George Nilson, who enacted the new policy regarding police settlements and court judgments, said officials also would seek to provide increased training for officers who are most often cited in lawsuits. The moves would give the public more information about the lawsuits. November 17: Mayor announces Seattle police accountability reforms November 13, 2014, Seattle PI: In a move to help bolster the Seattle Police Department’s public image and encourage responsible policing, Mayor Ed Murray announced Wednesday the formation of a permanent civilian Community Police Commission. November 17: How fast is Houston police responding to all calls for help? November 12, Houston Chronicle: Police are supposed to respond to Priority 1, potentially life-threatening calls, in under six minutes. Local 2 Investigates found 12 beats where it’s taking longer. An area just outside the West Loop at I-10 is waiting close to nine minutes. Neighborhoods around Lake Houston are waiting 11½ minutes. An HPD report recently presented to City Council members shows the department is meeting its six-minute goal 72.8 percent of the time. November 17: San Diego Sheriff’s Department ends Facebook page November 16, SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department has taken down its Facebook page after a man accused it of violating his free speech rights and sued for deleting his comments. November 17: D.C. police plan for future seizure proceeds years in advance in city budget documents November 15, 2014, Washington Post: D.C. police have made plans for millions of dollars in anticipated proceeds from future civil seizures of cash and property, even though federal guidelines say “agencies may not commit” to such spending in advance, documents show. November 17: Vegas police, UNLV studying use of lapel cameras November 16, 2014, Reno Gazette Journal: The Las Vegas program, funded by a $107,000 grant from the National Institute of Justice, is the focus of a study by the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Center for Crime and Justice Policy chief William Sousa November 16: LAPD Survey Finds Complaints About Discipline Bias November 14, 2014, AP: A survey of 500 Los Angeles Police Department employees found widespread concerns among officers and civilians that the department’s internal discipline system is deeply flawed and discriminates based on gender, ethnicity and rank, according to an internal report released Friday. Many of those interviewed said they believed internal investigations were unfair and that punishments were subjective, according to the report. The report, however, also contained data that raised doubts about some of those perceptions of bias. Statistics compiled by the LAPD show that the ethnic, gender and rank breakdown of officers sent to disciplinary panels for suspensions or termination roughly matches the demographics of the LAPD as a whole. November 16: Colchester (Vt) officer accused of taking drugs, gun November 11, 2014: AP: COLCHESTER, Vt. (AP) — A Colchester police detective is accused of taking drugs and a firearm from a police evidence locker in an incident the police chief on Tuesday called the darkest day in her department’s history. Cpl. Tyler Kinney, 38, of Jericho, is expected to be charged Wednesday in federal court with crimes related to drug distribution and gun trafficking. Kinney, who was in charge of the department’s evidence storage, was arrested Monday and is on unpaid administrative leave. November 15: Independent monitor job posted to keep track of Albuquerque PD for DOJ November 14, 2014, KOB, TV: The US Department of Justice and Albuquerque Police Department are looking for the right candidate to be an independent monitor for APD, and the job has now been posted. Link to job posting: http://www.kob.com/kobtvimages/repository/cs/files/APD%20Request%20for%20Info%20Monitor%20FINAL%20for%20Distribution%20%2010%2031%2014.pdf November 15: LAPD technology that tracks ex-cons stirs concerns November 15, 2014, AP: LOS ANGELES (AP) – Los Angeles police are increasingly relying on technology that not only tells patrol officers where crime is most likely to occur but also identifies and keeps track of ex-cons and other bad guys they believe are most likely to commit them. Police say the effort has already helped reduce crime in one of the city’s most notorious and historically gang-ridden neighborhoods. “This is a tremendous step forward. Without this, I couldn’t do my job,” said Capt. Ed Prokop, head of the Los Angeles Police Department division that watches over the grimly nicknamed “Shootin’ Newton” area. The program – part data collection, part lightning-fast computer platform, part street-level intelligence-gathering – is expanding in LA with the help of a recent federal infusion of $400,000 and has drawn interest from departments across North America. Dubbed LASER for its ability to zero in on offenders and hotspots, it is one of many newer law enforcement tools that use data tracking and collection – such as license plate scanners and cellphone trackers – often with little public knowledge or regulation. Privacy advocates say LASER isn’t transparent, has no clear oversight and unjustly focuses on keeping ex-convicts under suspicion even though they’ve served their time. November 15: Thick Bushes No Barrier for White House Intruder November 13, AP: A summary of the government’s investigation, released Thursday night, revealed sensational new details about the Sept. 19 break-in at the White House by a disturbed Army veteran carrying a knife. The government determined that lack of training, poor staffing decisions and communication problems contributed to the embarrassing failure that ultimately led to the resignation of the head of the Secret Service, Julia Pierson. The report disclosed Thursday did not specify any disciplinary actions ovember 15: Law Enforcement Social Media Use Up, But Policies Lacking November 13, 2014: Study reports lack of formal training to take advantage of social media as a tool for crime investigation, prevention and anticipation. Although 81 percent of law enforcement professionals surveyed said they use sites such as Facebook and Twitter on the job, 52 percent of the agencies lack procedures governing social media use. In addition, only 33 percent of agencies have a dedicated person to monitor social media activity. Link to report: http://www.lexisnexis.com/risk/downloads/whitepaper/2014-social-media-use-in-law-enforcement.pdf November 15: Feds suspend DA’s receipt of forfeiture funds November 14, 2014, WFAA: DALLAS —- The U.S. Department of Justice has suspended the Dallas County District Attorney Office’s access to federal forfeiture fund assets and is conducting a “compliance review” of the office’s use of those funds, a spokesman confirmed in an email Friday. Access to the funds from the department was cut off in August, the same month that News 8 revealed that District Attorney Craig Watkins had secretly settled a February 2013 accident he caused on the Dallas North Tollway without the approval of county commissioners. The settlement used state forfeiture funds to pay a man whose car Watkins had rear-ended, and required the man to repay Watkins personally if he ever spoke publicly about the accident. November 13: Seattle Mayor proposes greater civilian oversight of Seattle police November 12, 2014, KIROTV: Seattle Mayor Ed Murray is proposing to give Seattle police more civilian oversight than ever before. Today’s move comes in response to incidents of police abuse that helped to spark a Justice Department investigation of the department. To avoid a court trial, the city agreed to reforms in the use of force and greater accountability. “I believe the discipline process should be swift, certain and fair to be most effective,” said Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole at a late afternoon news conference in the Mayor’s office. In the mayor’s plan, the current Community Police Commission will play an unprecedented role. The mayor wants it to provide permanent civilian oversight of the police department. November 13: COPS Office Awards More Than $6 Million in Community Policing Development Grants November 13, 2014, DOJ, COPS: WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) released more than $6 million in federal funding for Community Policing Development grants. The funds released today advance the practice of community policing in law enforcement agencies through training and technical assistance, the development of innovative community policing strategies, applied research, guidebooks, and best practices. Projects included several micro grants to police departments for innovative work on crime control issues as well as grants to law enforcement stakeholder associations to work on projects that are national in scope. List of awards posted in the article. November 13: ACLU Pushes Public Input Before Adoption of Police Surveillance Tech The ACLU of California released a report detailing instances throughout the state and country where equipment such as drones and cellphone interceptors were acquired with the help of federal and other outside funds without any public scrutiny or input. Report: https://www.aclunc.org/news/aclu-launches-statewide-campaign-curb-secret-surveillance-california?utm_source=aclunc&utm_medium=slideshow&utm_campaign=homepage Check out the Interactive map, LT. Dan https://www.aclunc.org/article/map-state-surveillance-california November 13: Pentagon making changes in program that provides surplus equipment to law enforcement November 13, 2014, Fox News: WASHINGTON – The Defense Department says it’s making changes in a program that provides surplus military equipment to law enforcement agencies. The Pentagon has been reviewing the military surplus program, which came under scrutiny following the police response to protesters in Ferguson, Missouri last summer. At a House hearing Thursday, a Defense Department undersecretary in charge of the program said there would be improved consultation with the departments of Justice and Homeland Security. The official, Alan Estevez, said that would include notifying the Justice Department when a law enforcement agency has been suspended or terminating from participating in the program. But the official overall defended the program, saying the military equipment has saved lives and is a “good use of taxpayer dollars.” November 13: In push to keep mentally ill out of jail, county to expand crisis centers November 13, 2014, LA Times: At the urging of Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey and others lobbying to keep mentally ill people from being locked up in county jails, Los Angeles County supervisors voted Wednesday to fund several programs for people undergoing psychiatric crises.. The supervisors voted to use $40.9 million in state funding for opening three new 24-hour psychiatric urgent care centers, where police can bring people undergoing mental health crises instead of taking them to overcrowded emergency rooms or jail. November 13: Dallas Council Calls For Audit Of Dallas PD Contract & Computer System November 12: DALLAS (CBS 11 NEWS) – No references – No problem! The CBS 11 I-Team confirms Dallas city staffers never checked a company’s references before awarding a multi-million dollar computer system contract. When Councilman Philip Kingston questioned the bid process, he was told checking references rarely gets honest answers from people; so, the city doesn’t do it that often. That prompted Kingston to ask for a full audit of the Dallas Police Department’s Records Management System and the bidding and procurement process that lead the city to Unisys. The I-Team uncovered Unisys was awarded the contract back in 2009 for $7.4 million, even though another Fort Worth-based company, Indico, bid $5.7 million. Through several sources, the I-Team confirmed Unisys did submit an application and references with their original proposals, but Dallas city staffers never checked those references. If they had, Councilman Philip Kingston believes Dallas would have uncovered other cities were having major problems with the system. November 12: Councilor wants audit for APD-DOJ contractors expenses November 12, 2014, ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – In response to a KRQE News 13 investigation, some Albuquerque city councilors are now asking for the city to take a closer look at a long list of expenses that an attorney and former police chief have charged the City of Albuquerque in their work on the Department of Justice and city agreement on the Albuquerque Police Department. In the first three and a half months of their contract with the city, attorney Scott Greenwood and former Cincinnati Police Chief Thomas Streicher have made around $200,000 in attorney’s fees. However, it’s what the city has paid for on top of that that including expensive hotel bills, meals with alcoholic drinks and first-class plane tickets that has at least one city councilor calling for an audit. November 12: Long Beach selects its first Latino police chief: Robert Luna November 11, 2014, LA Times: Long Beach is tapping a top deputy of Jim McDonnell, newly elected to be Los Angeles County’s next sheriff, to replace him as the city’s police chief, officials announced Tuesday.. Deputy Chief Robert Luna, a 29-year department veteran, will be Long Beach’s first Latino police chief. He officially assumes the job on Nov. 21. November 12: Fort Worth Police Chief Jeffrey Halstead Announces Retirement November 11, 2014, NBC: Fort Worth Police Chief Jeffrey Halstead announced Tuesday he is retiring after six years leading the police department of the nation’s 17th largest city. He will continue as Chief until January 9, 2105. November 12: Poll Results: Cops speak out about body cameras This is very interesting reading with well-presented graphics. Lt. Dan. November 12, 2014, Police One: Even as body camera sales rise, decision-makers are hesitant about what this means for their agency and law enforcement as a whole. We polled nearly 1,500 Police One Facebook fans to find out what thoughts and concerns our law enforcement community has today about body cameras. Here’s what we learned: November 12: Police killings highest in two decades November 12, 2014, USA Today: WASHINGTON — The number of felony suspects fatally shot by police last year — 461— was the most in two decades, according to a new FBI report. The justifiable homicide count, contained in the FBI’s annual Uniform Crime Report, has become increasingly scrutinized in recent months as questions continue to be raised about the use of lethal force by law enforcement. The new 2013 total of justifiable killings represents the third consecutive increase in the annual toll. Criminal justice analysts said the inherent limitations of the database — the killings are self-reported by law enforcement, and not all police agencies participate in the annual counts — continue to frustrate efforts to identify the universe of lethal force incidents involving police. November 12: Loyalty questions raised when police moonlight as private security guards November 10, 2104, SF Gate: San Jose police officers who moonlight as private security guards for extra cash follow looser rules than cops in other big Bay Area cities, with officers always answering to the companies that hire them rather than their bosses up the chain of command. This invites problems, critics say, as exposed by the recent domestic violence arrest of 49ers player Ray McDonald at his San Jose home. When city officers arrived to investigate whether McDonald had abused his fiancée, they found that a colleague — who knew McDonald through his side security job with the Niners — was already there. Link to 2012 audit http://www.sanjoseca.gov/DocumentCenter/View/3133 November 12: NY Prosecutor to Fund Rape Kit Testing Nationally November 12, 2014, AP: NEW YORK — Evidence from up to 70,000 rape cases nationwide will get long-awaited DNA testing, the Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. announced Wednesday as he pledged as much as $35 million to help eliminate a backlog that has long troubled authorities, victims and lawmakers. Experts estimate hundreds of thousands of rape kits — swabs and specimens gathered during exams victims undergo after attacks — remain to be tested for genetic evidence that could identify, or eliminate, a suspect. The $500-to-$1,000-per-kit cost of testing has been major factor, despite millions in federal funding. He announced the plan at a news conference with “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” star and sexual assault survivors’ advocate Mariska Hargitay. The money comes from the DA’s share of an $8.8 billion settlement with French bank BNP Paribas over allegations of violating U.S. economic sanctions by processing transactions for clients in blacklisted countries. New York state communities will get priority in applying for the funding, which also will go to auditing how big backlogs are. Advocates hope it will build momentum to secure more money, including $41 million President Barack Obama has proposed; Congress is weighing it. An existing federal law also finances DNA testing to reduce evidence backlogs, but it’s not just for sex crimes. Some states and private donors also have pitched in. November 11: Albuquerque mayor signs DOJ agreement on police reform November 10, 2014, ABQJournal: Mayor Richard Berry called it a “historic day for our police department” as he signed an enormous settlement agreement Monday with the U.S. Department of Justice. Federal and city attorneys will meet Wednesday, he said, to begin the process required to file the agreement in court and get it signed by a federal judge. November 11: Fort Worth Police Chief Halstead Expected to Announce Tuesday He’s Retiring November 10, 2014, NBCFW: Fort Worth Police Chief Jeffrey Halstead is expected to announce Tuesday he is retiring after six years heading the department, sources tell NBC 5. Halstead’s departure will not be immediate and will take place sometime over the next several weeks, the sources said. A formal announcement has not yet been released by the department, though Mayor Betsy Price did release a statement Monday. November 11: Baltimore Council passes police body camera bill that mayor says she’ll veto November 10, 2014, Baltimore Brew: Mayor Rawlings-Blake again vows to veto the bill, saying the Council doesn’t have the power to legislate over the police department Fall 2014 Law Enforcement Inspections and Audit Courses We had some great classes in 2014, don’t miss out next year. Spring classes will be posted for online registration soon. Thx to all that attended !!!! Congratulations to the following agencies who had members earn their Law Enforcement Inspections and Auditing Certificate (LEIAC) designation upon successfully completing the LEIA-101 and 201 classes:
- Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, AZ
- San Diego County Sheriff’s Department, CA
- AZ. DPS
- Albuquerque, NM – PD
- Vancouver, WA – PD
- Boston, MA – PD
- Yuma AZ – PD
- Phoenix AZ – PD
- Maricopa County Atty Office
November 10: Chandler AZ. officer targeted Native Americans November 10, 2014, A Chandler police sergeant lost her rank, and nearly lost her job, when she ordered her subordinates to single out Native American shoplifting suspects for being booked into jail, rather than being cited and released with a ticket, according to an internal-affairs investigation. In an unusual move, Sgt. Sue Freeman was demoted to officer and agreed to leave the department by Dec. 31, 2015, or whenever she reaches her 20 years of service to qualify for her pension, according to the report. The demotion was in lieu of dismissal after the investigation sustained charges of conduct unbecoming an officer. November 10, 2014: The IACP has assembled a packet of resources to help guide you as your agencies continue to strengthen and build community relations and are confronted with difficult questions relating to the state of police-community relations. These include: Protecting Civil Rights: http://www.theiacp.org/ViewResult?SearchID=1105 Emerging Use of Force Issues: Balancing Public and Officer Safety: http://www.theiacp.org/portals/0/pdfs/emerginguseofforceissues041612.pdf Building Trust Between the Police and the Citizens They Serve: An Internal Affairs Promising Practices Guide: http://www.theiacp.org/portals/0/pdfs/BuildingTrust.pdf Building Safer Communities: Improving Police Response to Persons with Mental Illness: http://www.theiacp.org/Portals/0/pdfs/IACP_Responding_to_MI.pdf Enhancing Law Enforcement Response to Victims: http://www.theiacp.org/DownloadableResources Officer-Involved Shootings Investigative Protocols: http://www.theiacp.org/Portals/0/documents/pdfs/OIS_IP_Trifold_Web.pdf Police Pursuits In An Age of Innovation and Reform: http://www.theiacp.org/Portals/0/pdfs/Publications/Police%20Pursuit.pdf Addressing Sexual Offenses and Misconduct by Law Enforcement: http://www.theiacp.org/Portals/0/pdfs/AddressingSexualOffensesandMisconductbyLawEnforcementExecutiveGuide.pdf November 10: Attorney General Holder Statement on FBI’s 2013 Crime Statistics November 10, 2014, DOJ News Brief: Attorney General Eric Holder released the following statement Monday on the FBI’s release of the 2013 Uniform Crime Report: “This reduction in the violent crime rate continues a historic trend, and comes thanks to the tireless work of police and prosecutors throughout the nation,” said Attorney General Eric Holder. “This is a remarkable achievement that builds upon the significant gains we’ve seen — in reducing rates of both crime and incarceration — since President Obama took office. At the same time, we recognize we have much more work to do in order to ensure that every community, in every city in America, can share in the safer and brighter future we are building.” November 10, 2014: Violent Crime Reports Down 4.4% Last Year, Property Crime Down 4.1%: FBI November 10: Judge Rules Suspect Can Be Required to Unlock Phone With Fingerprint November 1, 2014, digits: A Virginia Circuit Court judge ruled Tuesday that police officers cannot force criminal suspects to divulge cellphone passwords, but they can force them to unlock the phone with a fingerprint scanner. If applied by other courts, the ruling could become important as more device makers incorporate fingerprint readers that can be used as alternatives to passwords. Apple introduced the technology last year in its iPhone 5S and Samsung included it in its Galaxy S5. November 10: Minneapolis PD to test Body-Cams November 9, 2014, (AP) — The Minneapolis Police Department, the largest in Minnesota, has become the latest to equip its officers with body cameras in what officials say is an effort to improve transparency and hold police accountable. Thirty-six officers will test two camera models over the next several months, with plans to roll them out department-wide by late 2015. Studies show departments that use body cameras have seen a decrease in use of force and a decrease in complaints against officers. Some critics welcome the cameras but say they’re concerned that officers have discretion to turn the devices off, and there are concerns about privacy November 9: Obama chooses U.S. prosecutor Lynch to be next attorney general, ahead of expected confirmation showdown November 9, 2014, FOX News: President Obama, in nominating New York federal prosecutor Loretta Lynch on Saturday to be the country’s next attorney general, called her the most qualified public servant for the job. However Lynch will still face a difficult confirmation process in Congress. Republicans have already told the White House that pushing any nominee through Congress while Democrats still have control of the Senate will be difficult and politically damaging. Republicans want to oversee Lynch’s confirmation in the next Congress, after taking control Tuesday of the upper chamber. If confirmed, Lynch will become the first African-American woman in the job, succeeding Eric Holder, who was the first African-American head of the Justice Department. November 8: Traffic stops top cause of death for law enforcement officers November 8, 2014, Joplin Globe: Matthew Chism became the 97th law enforcement officer in the country to die in the line of duty this year when he was shot following a traffic stop last week. It is not an isolated case; traffic stops have become the leading cause of death for police officers, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund in Washington. November 8: Goodyear AZ officer secretly taped 21 women as they undressed at tanning salon: November 8, 2014, NY Daily News: Jeffrey Streeter, 44, was arrested after a 20-year-old woman saw a camera phone on a wall of a changing room, police said. Authorities said they found 21 videos of women changing and evidence that Streeter had tried to erase his phone’s memory. November 8: Bratton Names New No. 2 at NYPD November 5, 2014, NY Times: After days of controversy over the No. 2 post at the New York Police Department, Commissioner William J. Bratton on Wednesday named his new pick for the job of first deputy commissioner. His choice, Benjamin B. Tucker, who has been the department’s top training official, was sworn in as the first deputy commissioner at Police Headquarters. The ceremony came less than a week after Mr. Bratton’s original choice for the job, Philip Banks III, abruptly resigned from his post as chief of department rather than accept a promotion to what he saw as a less powerful position. Mr. Banks, who is black, was the top uniformed officer in the department. His departure on Friday prompted expressions of frustration from some political leaders, who said the city could not afford to lose him at a time when the department was working to build better relations with black and Latino communities. Mr. Tucker is also black. November 7: Report Regarding Investigation of Improper Hiring Practices by Senior Officials in the Executive Office for Immigration Review November 7: U.S. Department of Justice Holds Two-Day “Fair and Impartial Policing” Training for St. Louis County Law Enforcement November 6, 2014, DOJ News Brief: The Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) is holding a Fair and Impartial Policing training on Thursday, Nov. 6, and Friday, Nov. 7, with local law enforcement as part of the Collaborative Reform Initiative and technical assistance taking place in St. Louis County. The two-day Fair and Impartial Policing training will include command-level law enforcement leadership from St. Louis County, St. Louis Metropolitan, Missouri Highway Patrol and Ferguson, Missouri, Police Departments, as well as local community members. The training is closed press; however, there will be a media availability on Friday at the conclusion of the training session. November 7: OK County Jail reaches end of DOJ review period November 6, 2014, Edmondson.com: The five-year memorandum of understanding between Oklahoma County and the Department of Justice expired Wednesday without a hitch for improvements regarding the Oklahoma County Jail, said Republican Ray Vaughn, District 3 Oklahoma County Commissioner. “Absolutely nothing” was communicated Wednesday between the DOJ and the county, Vaughn said. Neither has the DOJ posted anything on its website related to its case. The DOJ initially identified about 60 deficiencies in the jail five years ago. Every inspection made by the DOJ has been complimentary regarding the corrections that have been made, Vaughn said Thursday. The DOJ continues to be concerned about the mental health and medical treatment of inmates, he said. November 7: Portland Mayor Charlie Hales favors out-of-state team with Oregon ties to monitor police reforms November 7, 2014, Oregon Live: Portland’s City Council plans to select a team of criminal justice academics from Chicago who will work closely with retired Oregon Supreme Court Justice Paul J. DeMuniz and nationally recognized policing expert Geoffrey P. Alpert to monitor federally mandated police reforms. November 7: A Future In Which Every Police Officer Wears A Body Cam Isn’t Entirely Rose November 5,. 2014, Forbes: When the Daytona Beach Police Department first got body cameras, it only had enough for about half of its officers. Police Chief Mike Chitwood decided the first officers to strap them on should be those with a history of citizen complaints. Two years later, the resulting video has both exonerated and doomed officers accused of excessive force. November 7: Hugo Barrera is a favorite for Miami police chief job November 5, 2014, Local 10: Of the finalist two are city employees Rodolfo Llanes, assistant chief of Miami Police and Luis Cabrera, deputy chief of Miami Police. One of the candidates is from Texas, Malik Aziz, deputy chief of the Dallas Police Department. November 7: New NOPD chief Michael Harrison faces manpower, morale problems amid spike in major crimes November 7, 2014, NOLA: The New Orleans Police Department has shrunk by a third since 2010 and is losing roughly one cop every three days. Harrison became chief after two years commanding eastern New Orleans, where he dealt firsthand with the difficulties of trying to fight crime in one of America’s most murderous cities as fewer and fewer officers show up to roll calls. November 7: Study shows Fort Worth needs more police officers November 7, 2014, CBS: FORT WORTH — The Police Department needs to add 59 patrol officers to reduce response times and meet other immediate needs, but it has rejected a recommendation to pull those officers from the neighborhood police program. The staffing study by the nonprofit Police Executive Research Forum, or PERF, presented to the Fort Worth City Council on Tuesday, confirmed what officials and residents have said for years: The department needs more officers. Police Chief Jeff Halstead is working on a five-year plan to make that happen. November 7: LAPD detention officer arrested in bail solicitation scheme, police say November 5, 2014, An LAPD detention officer has been arrested on suspicion of accepting compensation from bail agents in exchange for information about inmates booked at the Van Nuys Jail, authorities said.. Leonard Ramirez, 42, was taken into custody Monday for bribery and participating in the bail solicitation scheme, according to a Los Angeles Police Department statement. Ramirez, who is not a sworn police officer, worked with bail agents, who compensated him for giving them inmate information, police said. November 7: Police officer charged as part of Camden drug ring November 1, 2014, On Wednesday, Bailey was one of 40 people charged in the drug network – one so large the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office provided a sheet with a family tree of connections. Her case represents perhaps the biggest blemish to the Camden County Police Department since it started in May 2013, after the city force was disbanded. November 7: Boynton Beach chief ‘disturbed and disgusted’ by officer rape findings November 1, 2014, Palm Beach Post: A Boynton Beach Police officer raped a 20-year-old woman at gunpoint on the hood of his marked police car, according to a police report. Officer Stephen Maiorino, 35, was charged with armed sexual battery, armed kidnapping and unlawful compensation or reward for official behavior Thursday by the state attorney’s office. Maiorino was booked into the Palm Beach County Jail, according to jail records. November 6: Misperceptions hinder efforts of law enforcement November 5, 2014, Philly.com: In rolling out its new iOS 8 operating system, Apple recently announced it will no longer unlock encrypted mobile devices for law enforcement because the devices are no longer set up to allow user passcodes to be bypassed. This move is certain to have a negative impact on law enforcement’s ability to fight crime and save lives, and FBI Director James B. Comey has said it will allow criminals to be beyond the law. It is time to unlock perceptions from the reality of an increasingly dangerous world. Tech companies are managing public perceptions about intrusions of privacy in the aftermath of National Security Agency revelations, leaks from the Cloud, and ever-intrusive hackers. In promoting their products, they do a public disservice because they reinforce some notion that law-enforcement officials, acting with legal authority, are not to be trusted. Let’s be clear about three things. First, this is about selling products. Second, law-enforcement officials are American citizens just like you and me – with families, friends, and neighbors who live in our communities. Third, law-enforcement officials are the Americans we frantically call when we need help. For a college-level terrorism class that I teach, I asked students to poll 100 people at random about whether these companies should be required to create “back doors” for mobile devices that would allow law enforcement access to unencrypted information pursuant to legal requests. November 6: Alabama oldest law enforcement agency has no oversight, limited training November 5, 2014, FOX10 News: MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – Alabama’s oldest law enforcement agency is under scrutiny and possibly headed for changes. FOX10 News Investigative Reporter Renee Dials broke the story earlier this year that some constables have criminal records and no training. Larry Sheffield’s arrest for murder in July put the office of Constable in the spotlight. FOX10 News discovered a number of constables with arrest records in Mobile County, and we told you about some of their convictions. Constables don’t have to have any training, and, there’s no agency or commission that has oversight over these elected law enforcement officers. November 5: LAPD Selects Taser on-body cameras for officers November 4, 2104, LA Times: After months of testing, Los Angeles police officials have picked the company they would like to use to outfit hundreds of officers with on-body cameras.. It remains unclear when officers will start to use the cameras — no contract has been signed and the department has yet to draft a policy on the use of the equipment — but the LAPD’s decision to use Taser International as its vendor marks the department’s latest move in its effort to utilize the new technology. Funding for the cameras will come from more than $1 million raised through private donations, avoiding City Hall budget constraints and bureaucracy that have hampered efforts to install cameras in LAPD patrol cars. Nov 5, 2014: CA Crime Vote Will Apply Money Saved On Prisons To Rehab, Victims November 5, 2014, UT San Diego: California voters passed Proposition 47, which will reduce simple drug possession and some property crimes to misdemeanors, with about 58 percent of the vote, reports U-T San Diego. Effective immediately, the state joins about a dozen other states with misdemeanor drug possession laws. The proposition, the Safe Neighborhoods and Schools Act, calls for an estimated $200 million saved in prison costs each year to fund programs that rehabilitate drug addicts, treat mental health needs, keep kids in school and support crime victims. “By passing Proposition 47, California voters show that they understand that the policies of the past have failed and that we cannot incarcerate our way to safety,” said Lenore Anderson, chair of the initiative ballot committee. November 5: Grapevine police officer placed on leave after admitting to ingesting narcotics for K-9 training November 4, 2014, Dallas News: Senior Officer Danny Macchio, a 17-year department employee, reported to Fort Worth police on Oct. 7 that his patrol vehicle had been burglarized at his home in Fort Worth. He told police that the training narcotics and a personal firearm that were inside the vehicle were missing. On Oct. 17, an internal investigation was launched and three days later Macchio was required to submit a urinalysis. The next day, one of Macchio’s family members contacted police to say they couldn’t find Macchio. He was later located in Dumas, a city about 40 minutes north of Amarillo, and brought back to Fort Worth. He confessed to taking the narcotics and ingesting some of them, police said. Macchio also surrendered the missing case of narcotics and his firearm that he reported stolen. Grapevine police searched Macchio’s home on Oct. 24 but did not recover anything. The incident is still under investigation. November 5: Seattle police to review property-crime response November 3, 2014, Seattle Times: The Seattle Police Department will conduct an immediate review of how it responds to property crime, Chief Kathleen O’Toole said Monday. O’Toole said she has heard community concerns regarding how the department responds to property crime, including the amount of time 911 callers wait for a police response and determining what crimes are eligible for online reporting, according to the Police Department. Danny Westneat’s column in Sunday’s Seattle Times was a catalyst for the review decision, Police Department spokesman Detective Drew Fowler said Monday. In his column, Westneat wrote that after his wife’s purse was stolen from their car, police told him to file a police report online. His kids tracked down the thieves’ location using a GPS locator on his stolen phone, but a 911 dispatcher still told Westneat to file an insurance claim online. November 5: Denver pays $40k a month to suspended deputies under investigation November 3, 2014, Denver Post: The Denver Sheriff Department is paying a combined nearly $40,000 per month to five deputies who have been placed on paid investigatory leave, according to records obtained by The Denver Post. A sixth deputy is serving a 90-day, unpaid suspension. The leaves and suspensions play into the department’s overtime spending as it must cover the gaps in jail supervision and management. At least two of those deputies have been off the job for nearly five months. And with a backlog of 189 open internal affairs investigations, the department could be paying the suspended deputies for months to come. November 5: Maui Police Chief and Deputy Officially Sworn In Check out the photos of how they welcome their new chiefs: Lt. Dan Maui Police Chief Tivoli Faaumu and newly selected Deputy Chief Dean Rickard were officially sworn in to their respective posts today during a ceremony held at the Kīhei police station in South Maui. The Honorable Judge Richard Bissen Jr. administered the Oath of Office for both individuals while Father Gary Colton conducted the invocation for the event. November 5: New Attorney General Not Likely Until 2015 November 3, 2014, NPR: Officials in the U.S. Senate and the executive branch increasingly expect the next attorney general to win confirmation in 2015, rather than pushing a candidate through during the lame-duck session of Congress later this year. The current occupant of the job, Eric Holder, nodded to that likely possibility last week in a conversation at the Washington Ideas Forum in D.C., telling an interviewer he would probably stay until early February, marking six years as the country’s top law enforcement officer. November 5: How Hackers Wreaked Havoc in St. Louis November 3, 2014, Govt. Tech: Anonymous operatives have outed at least 18 police officers, officials and residents over the past three months. November 5: When social media complicate the undercover work of police officers November 3, 2014, Baltimore Sun: The Facebook post included several photos of a smiling Baltimore County police officer, some of him in a suit, another sporting outdoor gear. None showed him in uniform or flashing a badge. The officer works undercover, and the Facebook poster warned that he investigates gun-related cases. The Facebook user’s friend had been arrested in June by the officer in an illegal arms sting. The officer is “known to pose as a gun dealer in order to entrap and arrest people,” the post read. “Please share this.” The teenager’s Facebook friend later posted the officer’s picture and the warning about entrapment. The photos in the post appeared to be taken from the Baltimore County officer’s Facebook page. November 4: Albuquerque Mayor Berry discusses Dept. of Justice’s announcement on APD reforms November 2, 2014, KOB: The city council is set to hold a special meeting Thursday to vote on the settlement agreement between APD and the Department of Justice. The deal involves reforming APD in several key areas. That includes use of force and using it only when “objectively reasonable,” then deescalating it quickly. The DOJ also wants APD to have a specialized response system for dealing with people with a mental health crisis. That includes having more officers training to handle those situations. Now that the blueprint is in place it has to be executed, but Mayor Richard Berry says that won’t be easy. November 3: Audit questions $372K spent on state gas cards Yet another audit that found an issue with gas cards. This is a great area for an audit in any organization that uses a gas card system. Lt. Dan November 2, 2014, Detroit Free Press: LANSING, Mich. – State auditors are raising questions about thousands of dollars of purchases charged to gas cards. The audit released Friday found people driving state vehicles spent $372,000 on things besides gas during a recent two-year period. About 40 percent of that amount was charged to a category called “other.” November 3: Interpol facial recognition experts meet to develop global guidelines October 24, 2104, Biometric Update: Biometric experts recently gathered at the first meeting of the Interpol Facial Expert Working Group to begin development on international facial recognition standards, according to a report by Eurasia Review. Held October 14-15, the meeting saw the participation of 24 technical and biometrics experts along with examiners from 16 nations, including identity and biometrics pioneer Dr Joseph Atick. Over the course of the two days, these experts successfully created a ‘best practice guide’ for the quality, format and distribution of images to be used in facial recognition. The guideline will be distributed to all 190 Interpol member countries to ultimately improve the quality of images required to achieve accurate and effective facial recognition. November 3: Los Angeles City Council Instructs Los Angeles Police Department To Create Drone Policy November 1, 2014, LA Times: The Los Angeles City Council voted to instruct the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), the Police Commission and the City Attorney’s Office to come up with criteria for the operation of drones in the City of Los Angeles. November 3: University of Chicago Police No Longer Allowed to Monitor Its Own Ranks November 3, 2014, DNA Info: HYDE PARK — The University of Chicago Police Department is taking the role of policing the rank and file out of the hands of officers. A new director of professional accountability will start on Monday and take over the process of investigating complaints against the 100 officers on the private force, according to Gloria Graham, assistant chief of the university police. November 3: Federal Forfeiture Program: What’s It Funding? Another article on forfeitures; this one refers to the Washington Post investigation, we mentioned in the newsletter last month. Don’t know if the media is going to get any traction on this, but they continue to run stories, some linked to the militarization of police issue. Lt. Dan November 1, 2014, Forbes: Cops are increasingly looking and acting more like soldiers. How are they paying for all this militarized equipment? One source of funding is particularly disconcerting for Americans’ constitutional rights: equitable sharing. Under this federal forfeiture program, local and state law enforcement can seize—and keep—cash, cars and other property they suspect have links to crime. Yet the taken property overwhelmingly came from people who have done nothing wrong. According to a new investigation by The Washington Post, the government never charged property owners with a crime in 81 percent of equitable sharing cases. Since 2008, 5,400 police departments and task forces have spent $2.5 billion in federally forfeited property. Link to the Washington Post story: http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/investigative/2014/10/11/cash-seizures-fuel-police-spending/ November 3: Ballot measure could reduce criminal penalties October 27, 2014, SAN FRANCISCO (KGO), Proposition 47 gives California voters the chance to decide whether the state should ease up on sentences for some low level drug and property crimes. Supporters say it will save money and reduce crime. Opponents say it will make our communities more dangerous. San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon is one of the driving forces behind the measure. More than 60 percent of people released from prison in California are back inside within three years, and Gascon thinks Prop 47 will change that. “When you have a system where 6 times out of 10 you are failing, I would say that is not a working system.” November 3: Sheets sworn is as police chief in Memphis November 3, 2014, Voice News: Memphis has a new police chief as of Oct. 28, that’s when interim Chief Scott Sheets was formerly sworn in to the full-time post for the city. November 3, 2014, Newark residents being told to take simple assaults, minor complaints to court rather than police November 3, 2014, NJ.com: NEWARK — A newly instituted policy for city police officers may force them to deliver a less than ideal response to victims of assault and other minor crimes looking to make a complaint: Take it to court. In an Oct. 23 memo obtained by NJ Advance Media, Chief Anthony Campos informed officers that they should refer any victim complaining about crimes such as simple assault, criminal mischief and harassment to file complaints in municipal court, rather than creating a formal report themselves. October 31, 2014, AP: MILFORD, Pa. — Pennsylvania State Police had a special pair of handcuffs set aside and ready for the man wanted in the fatal shooting of one of their troopers, Cpl. Bryon Dickson. They were Dickson’s. After the 38-year-old trooper was ambushed outside his barracks on Sept. 12, state police say the cuffs were kept at all times in the possession of an on-duty member of the barracks. When Eric Frein was captured Thursday evening, a sergeant who had worked with Dickson used the trooper’s patrol car to deliver the handcuffs to the arrest scene 30 miles away. Police say he then slapped them on Frein, who was driven to the barracks in Dickson’s cruiser. October 31: Justice Department Reaches Agreement with the City of Albuquerque to Implement Sweeping Reforms On Use of Force October 31, 2014, U DOJ News Brief: The Justice Department today announced it has reached a comprehensive settlement agreement with the city of Albuquerque that will bring wide-ranging reforms to the Albuquerque Police Department (APD) and its use of force against civilians. The Justice Department and the city have agreed to enter into a court-enforceable settlement agreement that will overhaul the way in which APD handles use of force by its officers following a year-long investigation into the department’s practices and letter of findings released by the Justice Department in April 2014. Once the Albuquerque City Council considers the settlement agreement in a special session scheduled for the week of Nov. 3, the Justice Department and the city will file the settlement agreement with the United States District Court for approval and entry as an order. The areas covered by the settlement agreement are: •Use of force •Specialized units •Crisis intervention •Policies and training •Internal and civilian complaint investigations; •Staffing and supervision •Recruitment and promotions •Officer assistance and support •Community engagement and oversight October 31: Federal civil rights charges unlikely against police officer in Ferguson shooting October 31, 2014, Washington Post: Justice Department investigators have all but concluded they do not have a strong enough case to bring civil rights charges against Darren Wilson, the white police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Mo., law enforcement officials said.“The evidence at this point does not support civil rights charges against Officer Wilson,” said one person briefed on the investigation, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the case October 31: Denver report on conclusion of Phase one of their reform efforts for the Sheriff’s office The Mayor’s Office, the Department of Public Safety and the Sheriff Department have taken many steps to address the challenges and to ensure that the agency is upholding its mission, values and commitment to the people of Denver. The City replaced the Sheriff and ordered a top-to-bottom review of agency protocols and operations. City leaders hired experienced, independent experts to assist with the review and reform initiative. Teams of city officials, subject-matter experts and community members participated in Task Forces and committees to review key topics and recommend improvements. Community forums were convened to collect input. Activities, documents and meeting information were posted on a new website (www.denvergov.org/dsdreform). Public input was invited through email and a form provided on the reform website. Those efforts and more have culminated into this report, which marks the end of Phase One of the reform effort. This report is the launch pad for Phase Two, from which the team of Hillard Heintze and OIR Group will begin its deep dive into the Sheriff Department’s organization and policies — including operations and procedures, leadership structure and the Internal Affairs Bureau. October 31: FBI raids Calexico California police headquarters October 31, 2014, Fresno Bee: CALEXICO, Calif. — The FBI seized computer hard drives and documents from Calexico Police Department headquarters in what it said Friday was a criminal investigation involving several officers. The allegations involve officers suspected of committing crimes while on duty, said FBI spokesman Darrell Foxworth, who wouldn’t be more specific. Thursday’s raid came less than three weeks after Pompeyo Tabarez was fired as police chief in the border city of 40,000 people about 120 miles east of San Diego. The city gave no explanation for the firing at the time. October 31: Probe of FBI agent leads to release of convicted drug dealers from prison October 31, 2014, Washington Post: An investigation into possible misconduct by an FBI agent has forced authorities to quietly release at least a dozen convicts serving prison sentences for distributing drugs in the District and its suburbs, according to law enforcement officials, court documents and defense attorneys. October 31: A Top New York Police Official, Set to Become Bratton’s Deputy, Quits October 31, 2014, NY Times: The New York Police Department’s top uniformed officer abruptly resigned on Friday, just days before he was to be promoted to the top civilian position directly beneath Commissioner William J. Bratton. The officer, Philip Banks III, who held the position of chief of department, cited only “professional reasons” for his resignation. Several people familiar with his thinking said he worried the promotion to first deputy commissioner would have effectively removed him from day-to-day and strategic crime-fighting initiatives for the nation’s largest police force. Chief Banks, who is black, was to have replaced Rafael Pineiro, the highest-ranking Hispanic member of the department. Mr. Pineiro announced his retirement last month amid protests from some Hispanic police leaders who felt he had been forced out. The departures of Chief Banks and Mr. Pineiro were viewed as a damaging one-two punch to Mr. Bratton and to Mayor Bill de Blasio, who have railed against the department’s use of stop-and-frisk tactics against minorities, and called for a new era of cooperation between minorities and law enforcement. October 31: Ex-deputies in Richland Co. charged; more tax fraud charges possible October 28, 2014, The State: RICHLAND COUNTY, SC — More tax fraud charges are likely in a $100,000 scam that so far has ensnared five Richland County sheriff’s deputies and a former, convicted civilian employee of the agency, Sheriff Leon Lott said Thursday. Each of the now-fired deputies has been criminally charged and each was a veteran of the department, having worked there from seven to 14 years, Lott said. He called their conduct a betrayal of their oaths to serve the public as well as of his trust. October 31: Florida International University Officer Allegedly Loses Temper, Fires Gun Inside Police Facility October 31, 2014, MIAMI (CBSMiami) – An FIU police officer is under investigation for allegedly losing his temper with a gun in his hand and firing several shots inside a Miami-Dade police training facility. For the past couple of days, CBS4 News has been investigating this alarming incident, trying to get answers. The FIU police chief is preparing to speak about the investigation October 31: AP demands Holder explain FBI’s fake newspaper sting October 31, 2014, The Hill: The FBI’s use of a fake Associated Press news story to locate a suspect raises “constitutional concerns,” the news organization wrote in a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder on Thursday. A lawyer for the AP called on the Justice Department to vow never to impersonate the news outlet again and to specify what authority it used to justify the action. October 31: Social Media’s Next Frontier October, 28. 2014, Govt. Tech: Your organization is on Facebook and Twitter — now what? With all new things, there comes a time when the novelty has worn off, but people aren’t ready to move onto something else. Like the coin collector who finally completes his penny collection, no matter how beloved, every project reaches a time when even the most emotionally invested are forced to stop and think, “OK, now what?” Social media have provided government with free platforms populated with millions of sprightly users. As a means to open new lines of communication with the public and meet the seemingly universal goal of increased transparency, social media delivered a solution unrivaled in its convenience, low cost and efficacy. In these early days of social media, the value to government is both obvious and severely limited. On the heels of hype, 2014 feels like something of a social media impasse. The good news is that big change is imminent. The Gen Y Facebook exodus isn’t social media’s death knell, but an indicator that people are tiring with what the first generation of social media offered and are clamoring for new possibilities. A future of integrated digital technologies that will transform the world is being built right now. October 29, 2014: Shuffling of Top Assignments at New York Police Department October 29. 2014, NY Times: More than a month after his No. 2 abruptly retired, Commissioner William J. Bratton late on Tuesday announced a reshuffling of the leadership at the top of the New York Police Department. Philip Banks III, the chief of department, will become the new first deputy commissioner, the second-highest-ranking position though one with fewer crime-fighting responsibilities. Mr. Banks, a 28-year veteran of the department, rose to its upper echelon under Mr. Bratton’s predecessor, Raymond W. Kelly, and had been considered a possible candidate for Mr. Bratton’s job. His elevation, while a promotion, represents a move away from the day-to-day management of the department’s 35,000 uniformed officers as chief of department, the highest-ranking uniformed position. That role, along with overseeing the department’s weekly CompStat meetings, will now fall to Chief James P. O’Neill, the current chief of patrol. Mr. Banks, who is black, replaces Rafael Pineiro, the highest-ranking Hispanic member of the department, as second-in-command. Mr. Pineiro announced his retirement last month amid protests from some Hispanic police leaders who felt he had been forced out. October 29: Phoenix police officer arrested for aggravated assault October 28, 2014, AZCentral: PHOENIX — A Phoenix police officer has been arrested for aggravated assault. Seven-year veteran Jeremy Sweet was arrested and booked Tuesday evening on one count of aggravated assault. The arrest stems from an investigation that began Monday afternoon. That’s when a complaint was brought forward by a Phoenix resident calling 911. Investigators are alleging that while on-duty, Sweet pointed a handgun at the occupants of another vehicle during a traffic altercation on South Central Avenue “His justification for this was indicating that someone may be trying to ram or cut him off to take a prisoner from his vehicle,” says Phoenix Police Sgt. Trent Crump. “He did not get on his police radio,” Crump continued. “He did not ask for assistance. He did not document this in any way. In fact, pulled up next to the vehicle, lectured the driver about their driving behavior while the gun was pointed at him, and continued on his way to the jail to perform his duties.” October 28: Deputy charged in murder of fellow deputy October 28, 2014, KOAT TV: Police said Jeremy Martin, 29, was shot and killed overnight in a Las Cruces hotel. Martin and Tai Chan, 27, were staying the night at Hotel Encanto after extraditing a prisoner to Stafford, Arizona. Las Cruces police said the two visited a Dublin’s Street Pub Monday night, where they had an argument. Police said they believe the deputies were drinking. The two returned to the hotel around midnight. Police said the argument between the two escalated and Chan fired several gunshots at Martin. Martin was attempting to flee to an elevator at the time he was shot, according to police. Police said Martin was shot several times in the back. Witnesses said they heard at least six shots October 28: Holder Defends Sentencing Reform In Talk To Police Chiefs October 28, 2014, The Crime Report: Attorney General Eric Holder appeared before the nation’s police chiefs yesterday and defended his policies of reducing some mandatory minimum federal prison sentences. In his annual appearance before the International Association of Chiefs of Police, meeting this week in Orlando, Holder acknowledged that some critics “have suggested that recent changes in charging and sentencing policies might somehow undermine our ability … to induce cooperation from defendants in certain cases.” Holder said he knows from experience, “and as so many of the seasoned law enforcement leaders in this room surely recognize, the reality is that these concerns are overstated.” October 28: Dallas police plan to report crime differently October 27, 2014, For the Dallas Police Department, there will soon be more than one way to count a crime. Police officials told members of the City Council’s Public Safety Committee on Monday that they plan to adopt the National Incident-Based Reporting System, commonly known by the acronym NIBRS. They said the new system will give the public a more in-depth and accurate picture of crime in the city. But department officials caution that the new system could also make crime in Dallas appear more prevalent at first. The reporting system, made possible by the department’s updated records software, includes numerous new categories of major crimes — such as gambling, criminal mischief, drug offenses, fraud and bribery — and requires crimes to be reported differently and in more depth than the current Uniform Crime Reporting system. The NIBRS data would also include more detailed information on crime victims. October 28: Postal audit calls for more oversight in mail tracking program to ease privacy concerns October 28, 2014, WASHINGTON (AP) — An internal Postal Service audit says about 49,000 pieces of mail were monitored during the last fiscal year under a far-reaching federal surveillance program and more oversight is needed to ease privacy concerns. Under the program, called “mail covers,” information on the outside of a piece of mail is recorded for use in law enforcement investigations. Postal Service spokeswoman Toni DeLancey said it “authorized only under limited circumstances.” But the audit also said there were insufficient controls in place to make sure that law enforcement requests for surveillance were being handled properly. In some cases, the audit said “responsible personnel did not always handle and process” those requests. October 28: Dallas Police Will Start Web Page With Data On 12 Years Of Police Shootings October 28, 2014, Dallas police officials said Monday that they will launch a Web page next month detailing information on 12 years of shootings by police officers. The announcement comes in the wake of a spate of such shootings this year by Dallas officers, and mounting complaints from community leaders about them October 28: Police chiefs call for expanding gun background checks October 28, 2014, Orlando Sentinel: Law enforcement officials from across the country on Monday called for background checks on all gun purchases, including private and gun-show sales.. “We must close off all avenues for dangerous people to acquire firearms,” Orlando Police Chief John Mina said, during a press conference for the National Law Enforcement Partnership to Prevent Gun Violence at the Orange County Convention Center. October 27: Puppy in Boston Police Department Bulletproof Vest Melts Internet Boston PD got some great PR out of this photo posted by Reddit, check it out and you’ll see why. Lt. Dan A photo of a budding member of the Boston Police Department’s K-9 force sent a shockwave of ‘awws’ across the Internet Monday. The photo, which was posted to Reddit, is from Massachusetts Vest-A-Dog, a non-profit that helps provide bulletproof vests, essential equipment, training, and purchase of dogs for police and law enforcement K-9 programs throughout the state. October 27: U.S. Inquiry Sought in Police Treatment of Press at Ferguson Protests October 26, 2014, Compiling 52 accusations of violations of the freedom of the press during the protests in Ferguson, Mo., after the killing of Michael Brown, the PEN American Center will announce on Monday that it is calling on the Justice Department to investigate the local police forces’ treatment of the news media. Such an investigation, a report by the organization said, would “shed essential light on the factors that drove law enforcement officers in Ferguson to infringe on media freedoms,” and should lead to new guidelines from the Justice Department for police departments in the United States “on respect for media freedoms during public demonstrations.” Link to PEN report: http://www.pen.org/ferguson October 26, 2014: Yardarm will tell police dispatchers when and where officers have fired their gun October 24, 2014, MSN: With the exception of maybe old Andy Taylor, most police officers in the United States carry a firearm as part of their standard equipment. Wouldn’t it be nice to know when those sidearms are drawn, and why? A Silicon Valley startup called Yardarm seems to think so — it’s testing a new gun accessory that can notify police dispatchers when officers draw and fire their weapons. It’s a small Bluetooth-enabled sensor that attaches to the officer’s pistol and interacts with a companion smartphone. In addition to tracking the gun’s action (if it’s been fired) and location, it can also sort out which direction the weapon was fired and even if it has simply left its holster. October 24: CHP Officer accused of stealing nude photos during suspect’s booking October 23, 2014, ABC7News: MARTINEZ, Calif. (KGO) – Bay Area CHP Officer Sean Harrington is accused of stealing nude cell phone pictures from a DUI suspect’s phone while she was being booked into the County Jail in Martinez. There is now evidence that other officers may also have been involved, and that possible criminal charges may be filed. October 24: Boston gang-unit officer charged with lying to FBI October 24, 2014, Boston Globe: A former Boston police officer assigned to a Youth Violence Strike Force was charged in federal court Thursday with making false statements to an FBI agent investigating a violent street gang in Roxbury. Authorities said that Steele, who was assigned to the Youth Violence Strike Force, the Police Department’s gang unit, was a longtime friend of an associate of the Roxbury gang. Steele is accused of providing internal police information to the associate while Boston police and the FBI were investigating the gang from 2009 to 2011. On one occasion, authorities said, Steele used his Boston police computer to run a license plate check on a vehicle. The vehicle turned out to be an unmarked Boston police car driven by a detective conducting surveillance on the gang. Steele also allegedly contacted a State Police trooper to seek information about a gang member’s pending charges in another criminal case. Steele is accused of making false statements when FBI agents confronted him in May 2011. He faces up to five years in prison and three years of supervised release, though if he is convicted, he is likely to be sentenced to less than the maximum. October 24: Phoenix police introduce mental-health-crisis reforms October 22, 2014, AZCentral: The Phoenix Police Department announced reforms Wednesday that it hopes will decrease police involvement with people in a mental-health crisis and lessen the odds of violent confrontations. The changes, which include creation of a Mental Health Advisory Board that will meet quarterly with Chief Daniel V. Garcia on policies and procedures, was created in response to the August shooting death of a mentally ill woman. Michelle Cusseaux was fatally shot by Sgt. Percy Dupra while he was serving a court-issued mental-health pickup order. According to police, Cusseaux threatened officers at the door with a hammer. October 24: As chief, Darryl Forté has been ‘a true agent of change’ for the Kansas City police October 23, 2014, Kansas City News: Construction work may not be part of Darryl Forté’s job description, but as Kansas City’s police chief, he is focused on mending a historical disconnect between the department and the minority community. Three years into his stint as the city’s first black police chief, Forté is succeeding, many say. October 24: A Plan to Cut Costs and Crime: End Hurdle to Job After Prison October 23, 2014, NY Times: To ease these residents’ re-entry into society, Washington’s City Council this summer approved legislation that forbids asking about criminal history on most job applications, a step being considered by Georgia, Michigan and New York, among other states. After more than 25 years of tough-on-crime laws and the incarceration of millions of low-level drug offenders, the effort is part of a bipartisan re-evaluation of the criminal justice system and reflects a growing concern that large numbers of people, especially African-Americans — who have been jailed disproportionately — remain marginalized from the work force and at greater risk of returning to crime. October 24: The Dallas Police Finally Started DNA-Testing Old Rape Kits — and Now, the Hard Part October 24, 2014, Dallas Observer: Dallas victims of unsolved sexual crimes just got one step closer to potentially seeing justice their abusers. The Dallas Police Department recently announced it had received a portion of federal and state money to be allotted toward DNA testing for rape kits. The testing began earlier this month, and will target more than 4,000 cases from between 1996 and 2011. The department plans to submit 250 to 300 kits for testing each month. Only 10 percent of cases will find matches. But Bobbie Villareal, Executive Director of the Dallas Area Rape Crisis Center, says that since most rapists are serial offenders, a single identified case could lead to many more matches. October 24: Editorial: The cost of our bad policing October 24, 2014, Philly.com: NOW WE can put a price tab on the cost of police misconduct in Philadelphia. According to a report by the website MuckRock, the city has spent $40 million since 2009 in damages and settlements on lawsuits alleging misconduct by police. The most expensive were two lawsuits brought by people who claimed they were wrongly shot by police. In each case, the city paid $2.5 million. In all, more than 1,200 cases have been filed since 2009. The city settled roughly half the cases at an average of $69,401 per lawsuit. MuckRock, which got its figures from Freedom of Information requests, looked at lawsuits in a number of American cities. Its study pointed out that Philadelphia had – by far – the highest number of cases and payouts among similarly sized cities that were studied. In fact, the city paid out more than double the $16 million paid out by four cities: San Jose, Calif; San Francisco; Indianapolis; and Austin, Texas. October 24: Milwaukee police union plans no-confidence vote October 24, 2014, LaCross Tribune: MILWAUKEE (AP) — The Milwaukee Police Association plans a no-confidence vote on the city’s police chief next week following the firing of an officer who fatally shot a man in a downtown park. October 24: New York City Police to Be Equipped With Smartphones and Tablets October 24, 2014, NY Times: The New York Police Department will begin equipping all of its officers with smartphones and outfitting many police cars with tablet computers in an effort to modernize the nation’s largest police force, the Manhattan district attorney’s office announced on Thursday. The program, the N.Y.P.D. Mobility Initiative, will distribute 41,000 devices across the department; each of its 35,000 officers will receive a hand-held device, and 6,000 “ruggedized” tablets will be installed in police cars, a statement from the district attorney’s office said. October 24: Sheriff’s Office investigation into ex-deputy blasted October 24, 2014, AZCentral: The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office’s court-appointed monitor is criticizing the agency for what he describes as a flawed internal investigation stemming from the misconduct of a former deputy in the agency’s Human Smuggling Unit. The monitor’s report alleges that the office’s Professional Standards Bureau disregarded key witness statements, failed to hold deputies criminally responsible and overlooked what may have been widespread corruption throughout one of the agency’s most controversial immigration outfits. October 24: Complaints mounted against sheriff’s civilian watchdog October 21, 2014, When Charles Gaither, the former Los Angeles Police Department officer turned police reformer, quit his job as King County’s first law-enforcement oversight director last month, his anger was evident. He alleges harassment; public records indicate others blame him for causing strife. October 24: Austin police lieutenant fired for dishonesty, retaliation October 22, 2014, Statesman: Austin police fired a lieutenant Wednesday after an internal affairs investigation determined he made false reports to have the husband of a woman who was having an affair with him arrested. October 23: Bastrop sheriff’s investigator made mistakes on 44 cases October 20, 2014, BASTROP, Texas (KXAN) — A Bastrop County Sheriff’s Office investigator charged with investigating crimes against children — as well as adults — neglected as many as 44 criminal cases over two years, an internal audit discovered. Five of those cases involving adults were immediately handed to another investigator, while Robert Torres awaits the outcome of a disciplinary review that could bring a written reprimand, demotion or reassignment. Link to audit: https://lintvkxan.files.wordpress.com/2014/10/bastrop-county-sheriff-audit-summary.pdf October 23: FBI Facial Recognition System Gives Officers an Investigative Lead October 20, 2014, Govt Tech: The powerful tool replaces legacy technology and lets police officers automatically compare a suspect’s digital facial image against more than 20 million images, but it has accuracy limits and has raised concerns among privacy groups. October 23: Chief deputy found dead of gunshot wound The second-in-command at the Jefferson County (Kentucky) Sheriff’s Office was found dead Monday afternoon in a state park lodge from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Col. Mike Hettich, a 33-year veteran of the department and well-known for his work as chief deputy with the sheriff’s office and as Kentucky’s national representative with the Fraternal Order of Police, was 56. October 23: Oklahoma law enforcement officials show interest in fixing DNA sampling oversight October 20, 2014, The Oklahoman: Oklahoma police, sheriffs, district attorneys and judges are showing new interest in DNA sampling after misdemeanor convictions after reading news that thousands of samples are not being collected in Oklahoma. October 22: Nancy Rodriguez, Howard Spivak Named To Run National Institute Of Justice October 22, 2014, The Crime Report: After a long delay in naming a permanent leader of the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), President Obama has announced his intention to appoint Nancy Rodriguez, a criminologist at Arizona State University, to the position. Rodriguez also is associate dean of the College of Public Programs. Her research interests include sentencing policies, juvenile court processes, and substance abuse. The research has included evaluations of drug courts, restorative justice programs, and three strikes laws. William Sabol, acting director of the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Statistics, has also been serving as acting director of NIJ since a previous acting director, Greg Ridgeway, left last summer. The NIJ directorship no longer is subject to Senate confirmation. October 22: High-ranking Baltimore police commander stole pay, prosecutors say October 22, 2014, Baltimore Sun: A former high-ranking Baltimore police commander — who the department said in April stepped down for “personal reasons” — was charged Wednesday with theft.. Prosecutors said Lt. Col. Clifton McWhite was charged with theft between $1,000 and $10,000 following a joint investigation by the city state’s attorney’s office and the Police Department. October 22: New Cincinnati Police Department contract October 22, 2014, Local 12 News: CINCINNATI (WKRC) — After months of negotiations, the city of Cincinnati and its police union have agree on their first contract since 2008. City council passed the new agreement Wednesday afternoon. The two-year contract gave officers a 1.5 percent pay raise. It was not as much as they wanted. October 22: Judge dismisses suit by SPD officers on use-of-force reforms October 22, 2014, Seattle Times: Sweeping away all claims, U.S. District Judge Marsha Pechman has dismissed a lawsuit brought by 100 Seattle police officers seeking to block new, federally mandated use-of-force policies. October 22: Supreme Court Will Consider Police Searches of Hotel Registries October 20, 2014, WASHINGTON Post: — The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to decide whether the police in Los Angeles may inspect hotel and motel guest registries without permission from a judge. Dozens of cities, including Atlanta, Denver and Seattle, allow such searches, which law enforcement officials say help them catch fugitives and fight prostitution and drug dealing. A group of motel owners challenged the law. They said they were not troubled by its requirement that they keep records about their guests. But they objected to a second part of the ordinance, requiring that the records “be made available to any officer of the Los Angeles Police Department for inspection.” October 22: Police Foundation to conduct comprehensive review of Stockton bank robbery and gun battle October 20, 2014, Police Foundation: On July 16th, the Stockton Police Department in California responded to a call about a bank robbery at the Bank of the West. When the officers arrived the three robbers fled, taking three hostages with them. Officers gave chase and exchanged fire with the robbers, who had a number of semi-automatic weapons including an AK-47 rifle. The chase ended with the death of one of the hostages. In order to understand the incident as fully as possible, and to examine all aspects of its response to the robbery and hostage-taking, the Stockton Police Department has commissioned an independent review of all aspects of the July 16th events. The department selected the Police Foundation to conduct this review and has made it clear they expect a thorough, comprehensive examination. October 22: When police moonlight in their uniforms Op-ed piece on off duty work, this issue has been around for years. This article was in LA Times, so it may get some traction. Might be a good chance to take a look at your off / extra duty policies. Lt. Dan October 13, 2014, LA Times: The facts are still emerging about Wednesday’s fatal shooting of 18-year-old Vonderrit Myers Jr. by an off-duty St. Louis police officer, but one topic deserves attention no matter what. The officer involved in the shooting was off-duty, but he was working for a private security firm while wearing his public police uniform. This second job wasn’t secret. The St. Louis Police Department approved it. The officer involved in the fatal shooting was working for the St. Louis-based CGI Security, and he may have been assigned to patrol the Flora Place Community Improvement District, a St. Louis neighborhood whose residents have agreed to a special tax assessment for security and other services. So extra tax funds go to a private security firm to pay an off-duty public police officer to patrol public streets in his police department uniform. If you’re confused, you should be. October 22: Voiceprints Being Harvested by the Millions Very interesting article. Lt Dan October 13, 2014, ABC: Over the telephone, in jail and online, a new digital bounty is being harvested: the human voice. Businesses and governments around the world increasingly are turning to voice biometrics, or voiceprints, to pay pensions, collect taxes, track criminals and replace passwords. “The general feeling is that voice biometrics will be the de facto standard in the next two or three years,” said Iain Hanlon, a Barclays executive. The single largest implementation identified by the AP is in Turkey, where mobile phone company Turkcell has taken the voice biometric data of some 10 million customers using technology provided by market leader Nuance Communications Inc. But government agencies are catching up. In the U.S., law enforcement officials use the technology to monitor inmates and track offenders who have been paroled. October 21: U.S. Department of Justice to work with Fayetteville police to review department practices, policies October 21, 2014, Fayetteville police are looking to a federal program to help review its practices and policies regarding use of force, a move that officials believe will help build trust between officers and the community. The U.S. Department of Justice has agreed to work with the Fayetteville Police Department on the review, officials announced Tuesday. The review will be done through the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services and funded by the Justice Department, COPS director Ronald L. Davis said during a news conference Tuesday at North Carolina Veterans Park on Bragg Boulevard. October 21: U.S. Dept. of Justice reveals plans to investigate Baltimore Police Dept. October 20, 2014, BALTIMORE — After years of alleged police brutality, the U.S. Department of Justice revealed plans Monday to investigate the Baltimore Police Department. At the U.S. attorney’s office in Baltimore, the Department of Justice announced initial details about collaborative-reform initiative to curb police brutality in the city. Officials at the announcement included U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Police Commissioner Anthony Batts and Ronald L. Davis, director of the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services at the Department of Justice. October 21: ACLU Questions Taser Policies of Iowa Law Enforcement October 20, 2014, (ABC 6 News) — The use of non-lethal force is under scrutiny in Iowa after two people died while being stunned by officers in the past year. While recent events in Ferguson, MO, have brought renewed focus on shootings involving police, some are calling for stricter guidelines on police use of Tasers and stun guns. “They have darts that are embedded in the skin and there is a 50,000 volt that is delivered to the body. It can kill people,” said Veronica Fowler, a spokesperson for the American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa. The ACLU of Iowa, along with the University of Iowa, recently reviewed Taser policies for all 99 Iowa counties and were surprised by what they found. According to the report, only eight of the 99 counties prohibit a Taser from being used on a pregnant woman. Only one prohibits use of a Taser on an elderly person, and only seven, including Floyd County, prohibit using a Taser on a person who is already restrained. “Basically we found that the policies were woefully lacking,” Fowler said. “They’re very, very minimal and in some cases non-existent.” October 20: Chicago Police officers ratify contract; 66.5 percent vote yes October 17, 2014, Sun Times: Chicago Police officers will get an 11-percent pay raise over five years — and $65 million in back pay — under a contract overwhelmingly ratified Friday that averts arbitration for the first time since 1996. October 20: Massive FBI study sheds light on the lives and minds of serial killers October 17, 2014, Study took several years to complete and involved an examination of the crimes of 480 convicted serial killers. October 20: Ex-Romulus police chief sent to prison for corruption October 17, 2014, Detroit News: – — Former Romulus police chief Michael St. Andre was sentenced Friday to 5 to 20 years behind bars for his role in a wide-ranging police corruption case involving himself and five officers in the department. Prosecutors maintain the defendants pretended to be investigating the Landing Strip Bar in Romulus and Subi’s Place in Southgate. The fraudulent probes, investigators allege, were a ruse for hiring prostitutes from nearby strip club. October 20: Evidence handlers negligent October 18, 2014, Register Guard: Three Eugene police employees are found to have violated department policies. Oregon State Police conducted last year’s investigation, sparked by the discovery that more than 1,000 items were missing from the Property Control Unit on North Garfield Street. Those items included several rape kits, nunchuks, drugs, cash, guns and a human skull. October 20: FBI Director Comey calls on Congress to stop unlockable encryption. Good luck with that. October 17, 2014, Washington Post: FBI Director James Comey is urging Congress to take up the topic of encryption — setting up a potentially historic debate on Capitol Hill over whether U.S. tech firms can be required to bake into their technology ways for law enforcement to legally access users’ e-mails, texts and other digital communications. October 19: Confidential informants are an integral but problematic part of federal law enforcement October 19, 2014, The Post-Gazette identified 384 cases, many with multiple defendants, that stemmed from the affidavits. Of those cases, 148 were built in part on the work of confidential informants. Nearly two-thirds of the cases investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration involved informants. October 18: Sharp increase in firings at Denver sheriff’s department this year October 17, Denver Post: A Denver Sheriff Department deputy who was fired last month after igniting racial tension in a women’s dorm at the county jail became the seventh deputy to be fired in 2014. Deputy Rosanna Jenkins’ dismissal is the fourth since Sept. 5, reflecting a sharp increase in terminations since the department has come under intense scrutiny over its management of Denver’s two jails. Daelene Mix, a spokeswoman for the Denver Department of Public Safety, said the department has not become more willing to terminate deputies because of public pressure. The safety manager and sheriff are following the department’s disciplinary guidelines, she said. However, terminations are on the rise. In 2013, two of the 27 deputies who were disciplined for misconduct were terminated. A third deputy was disqualified after a restraining order prevented him from using a gun, according to disciplinary records obtained by The Denver Post. In 2012, only one deputy of the 14 who were disciplined was fired from the department. But in the first nine months of 2014, 30 deputies have been disciplined and seven have been fired. October 18: Report: Michael Brown’s blood found on Officer Darren Wilson’s gun, car door (CNN) — Forensic tests have found the blood of Michael Brown on the gun, uniform and police cruiser belonging to Officer Darren Wilson, who fatally shot the unarmed teen two months ago in Ferguson, Missouri, The New York Times reported. The revelation, provided by unnamed government officials familiar with a federal civil rights investigation, marked the first public account of Wilson’s testimony to investigators. That it could potentially serve as exculpatory evidence — or at the very least, used by Wilson’s supporters to back the officer’s account of what transpired on Canfield Drive on August 9 — immediately drew suspicion and anger from leading activists who portended an ominous reaction from Brown supporters. October 16: Denver mayor picks Chicago, LA firms to lead sheriff department reform October 16, 2014, Denver Post: Denver has hired two high-profile, national consulting firms to guide its attempt at reforming the embattled sheriff’s department. Hillard Heintze of Chicago and OIR Group of Los Angeles will begin work Oct. 29, Mayor Michael Hancock’s office announced Thursday. Both firms have on staff former U.S. Department of Justice prosecutors and former police commanders and sheriffs who have worked at major metropolitan departments. The city is paying the two firms $295,000 combined. October 16: Florida high court puts limits on phone tracking October 16, 2014, Palm Beach Post: TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — In a sweeping ruling, Florida’s highest court said Thursday that police in the state have no right to use a cellphone to track someone’s movements without a warrant. The state Supreme Court in a 5-2 decision ruled that Broward County Sheriff’s Office had no right to stop and arrest Shawn Tracey for possession of more than 400 grams of cocaine. October 16: FBI Director Warns Against Cellphone Encryption October 16, 2014, ABC: FBI Director James Comey warned in stark terms Thursday against the push by technology companies to encrypt smartphone data and operating systems, arguing that murder cases could be stalled, suspects could walk free and justice could be thwarted by a locked phone or an encrypted hard drive. October 16: U.S. Justice Department’s No. 2 official to step down October 16, 2014, (Reuters) – The No. 2 official at the U.S. Department of Justice, Deputy Attorney General James Cole, plans to step down, the latest in a series of departures from top officials at the agency. Cole’s exit, which the Justice Department announced on Thursday, will add to a growing list of confirmation battles over appointments the Obama administration faces in the coming months, including the top three positions at Justice. Attorney General Eric Holder announced last month that he intends to leave the administration. October 16: Florida prison boss orders use-of-force audit October 16, 2014, Miami Herald: Over the past decade, Lt. Walter Gielow has been named in more reports of use of force against inmates than any other officer working for the Florida Department of Corrections. With a record of 179 reports since 2003, Gielow — and fellow officer Patrick Germain, with 172 reports — have helped make Santa Rosa Correctional Institution, in the state’s Panhandle, number three in the state in frequency of use of force against inmates, behind Union Correctional and Charlotte. In the recently completed fiscal year, state corrections officers logged 7,300 use-of-force cases, nearly 1,000 more than the previous year, according to the department’s data. Use-of-force cases have roughly doubled since 2008. Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/news/special-reports/florida-prisons/article2925586.html#storylink=cpyThese numbers prompted Michael Crews, secretary of the Department of Corrections, to announce this week that he is ordering an independent audit of the agency’s procedures and policies involving the use of force against inmates. October 15: LAPD Chief: Probe Found No Evidence Of So-Called ‘Ghost’ Patrol Cars October 14, 2104: LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The Los Angeles Police Commission responded Tuesday to a report Tuesday that found LAPD officers may have used so-called “ghost cars” to boost patrol numbers. KNX 1070’s Megan Goldsby reports Chief Charlie Beck was on hand to dispute the findings and said if any such practice did occur in the past, it’s not happening now. October 15: What you need to know about 2015 police grants October 15, 2014, PoliceOne: The United States Bureau of Justice has posted its request for funding priorities for 2015. This request includes both discretionary ($1.5 billion) and mandatory (formula $891 million) funded programs. Police Departments seeking grant funding in 2015 should review the posted budget in detail to determine whether their strategic plan lines up with the programs intended for funding next year October 15: Obama delays replacing Holder until after election October 14, McClatchyDC: WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama will not nominate a replacement for Attorney General Eric Holder until after the Nov. 4 midterm elections. White House officials say they do not want the nomination to become an issue in the already contentious elections. Senate Democrats, who are fighting to maintain their majority, asked Obama to hold off on the announcement. Holder announced his resignation Sept. 25, but agreed to stay on until his successor is confirmed. October 15: ACLU lawyer given Justice Dept. civil rights post October 15, 2014, Yahoo: WASHINGTON (AP) — An American Civil Liberties Union attorney was named Wednesday to be the acting head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. Vanita Gupta, who has served for the past four years as deputy legal director of the ACLU and director of its Center for Justice, starts at the Justice Department next week. She previously worked as a lawyer at the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. October 15: Milwaukee Police Fire Officer Who Shot Man in Park October 15, 2014, ABC: Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn said Wednesday that he had fired an officer who instigated a fight with a mentally ill man that eventually led the officer to shoot the man 14 times, killing him. Officer Christopher Manney, 38, was dismissed nearly six months after 31-year-old Dontre Hamilton’s death. Activists have compared the shooting to that of Michael Brown, an unarmed, black 18-year-old shot by an officer in Ferguson, Missouri. October 15: New York Police Lieutenant Faces Jail for Leaks in Ticket-Fixing Inquiry October 15, 2014, NY Times: The first person tried in connection with a scandal that involved New York City police officers’ making traffic and parking tickets disappear for friends and relatives was convicted on Wednesday of leaking information about the investigation.
Lt. Jennara Cobb, 38, was found guilty of divulging an eavesdropping warrant, official misconduct and obstruction of governmental administration.
- Basic camera usage, such as who will be assigned to wear the cameras and where on the body the cameras are authorized to be placed;
- Recording protocols, including when to activate the camera, when to turn it off, and the types of circumstances in which recording is required, allowed or prohibited;
- The process for downloading recorded data from the camera, including who is responsible for downloading, when data must be downloaded, where data will be stored, and how to safeguard against data tampering or deletion;
- The length of time recorded data will be retained by the agency in various circumstances;
- The process and policies for accessing and reviewing recorded data, including the persons authorized to access data and the circumstances in which recorded data can be reviewed; and
- Policies for releasing recorded data to the public, including protocols regarding redactions and responding to public disclosure requests.
Link to report: http://ric-zai-inc.com/ric.php?page=detail&id=COPS-P296 September 13: Poll Voters mostly approve of police, but views split along racial lines September 13, 2014, LA Times: A solid majority of California voters believes local police have a tough job and do it well, but nearly a third say law enforcement targets minorities unfairly, according to a new USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll.. September 13: Policing and Wrongful Convictions, NCJ Number: 246328 Date Published: August 2014: In this bulletin, two law enforcement professionals and an advocate for those who have been wrongfully convicted look at the causes of wrongful convictions and propose a number of best practices to reduce the incidence of these injustices. Link to document: https://ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/246328.pdf September 13: RICO Sheriff Charged With Attempted Misconduct (cyberstalking) Resigns September 12, 2014, KWQC.com: Update: At a news conference, Sheriff Jeff Boyd said he agreed to an Alford plea, which does not admit guilt, as a way “to get this behind us.” Boyd went on to say he “believes he committed no crime.” His lawyer insists he’s only been charged with attempted official misconduct for texting. Boyd said the investigation has been very hard on his family. He said he hasn’t thought about what he will do because it has all happened so fast. More details from a news release by the Illinois Attorney General: Chicago – Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced that Rock Island County Sheriff Jeffrey Boyd resigned and pled guilty today to attempted official misconduct based on attempted cyberstalking. September 13: Office of Independent Monitor identifies ‘critical issues’ within the Denver Sheriff’s Department DENVER – Denver’s Office of the Independent Monitor has submitted a letter detailing five “critical issues” within the Denver Sheriff’s Department. However, those issues are not included in the official review required as part of a $3.25 million settlement with an inmate who was abused. Link to Monitor’s letter: http://media.thedenverchannel.com/documents/Letter%20from%20N%20Mitchell%20to%20Councilman%20Lopez.pdf September 12: Columbus Ohio safety director announces retirement after mayor’s reprimand September 12, 2014, Columbus’ longtime public-safety director, Mitchell J. Brown, has announced he will retire in the wake of public criticism from Mayor Michael B. Coleman and a city councilman about recent problems in the Police Division. City officials have criticized Brown and his department in the past month after the crime lab submitted incorrect DNA reports, police sergeants gamed the paid-leave system, resident complaints were left ignored and police dashboard cameras ran out of memory. Brown, 66, said his departure is not related to criticism from Councilman Zach M. Klein and a letter of reprimand that Coleman sent to Brown last Friday. September 12: LAPD Encounters Fingerprint Backlog Due To Staffing Shortage September 10, 2014, KTTV. LA: Los Angeles, CA – (FOX 11 / AP) The number of cases with unanalyzed fingerprint evidence has more than doubled in the last two years, hampering efforts to solve thousands of burglaries, thefts and other property crimes, LAPD officials say. The backlog has worsened despite a Los Angeles Police Department campaign to process fingerprints more effectively, including having officers rather than analysts collect fingerprints at some crime scenes, the Los Angeles Times reported. In 2012, the backlog was about 2,200 cases; today, there are 5,455, according to The Times. LAPD Deputy Chief Kirk Albanese told the civilian-led Police Commission Tuesday that the delay was so severe that some fingerprints were now useless because the three-year deadline for prosecuting offenders had passed. September 12: DOJ Employees Avoid Prosecution; Are There Two Standards Of Justice? September 10, 2014, McClatchyDC: Dozens of Justice Department officials, ranging from FBI agents and prison wardens to high-level prosecutors, have escaped prosecution or firing despite findings of misconduct by the department’s own internal watchdog, McClatchy Newspapers reports. Most of the names of the investigated officials remain under wraps. McClatchy says it got documents under the Freedom of Information Act showing “a startling array of alleged transgressions uncovered by the department’s inspector general.” September 12: NYPD, Bratton Defends His Policing Policies September 10, 2014, Wall Street Journal: Expects Crime in New York City to Decrease for the 24th Consecutive Year. September 12: St. Louis County Police Get Body Cameras; One Of Largest U.S. Forces To Do So September 10, 2014, St. Louis Dispatch: Within two weeks, about half of St. Louis County police officers will be recording every call for service using tiny video cameras on their chests, glasses or collars, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Several companies are lending free technology to police departments in hope of landing lucrative contracts in an industry that surged after a national outcry about the Ferguson police shooting. In St. Louis County, 188 police officers will be using cameras. About two dozen officers got cameras and training yesterday. Chief Jon Belmar said his goal is to have all 465 patrol officers wearing them as soon as possible. St. Louis County will be among the nation’s largest police forces to deploy the technology to all its officers. For the next 90 days, the department will experiment with different types of cameras and approaches. September 12: Mostly White Forces in Mostly Black Towns: Police Struggle for Racial Diversity September 9, 2014, New York Times: Critics point to the lack of racial balance in police departments as evidence of systemic racism. But experts say the experiences of the two towns illustrate the obstacles to achieving diversity in law enforcement, even for departments that have made it a priority. “I see all these pundits come on the Sunday talk shows and say: ‘Of course you can hire more black people. Of course they’re not trying,’ ” said Nelson Lim, a senior sociologist at the RAND Corporation’s Center on Quality Policing who has consulted with departments in Los Angeles and San Diego. “But it’s very, very, very difficult.” There is little hard evidence that diversity correlates with better performance, in part because it is difficult to control for complex variables and to know which outcomes, from crime rates to brutality cases, to measure. In fact, one study of a Florida police department found that black officers were more likely than white to use force against black suspects. Link to study: https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/grants/183648.pdf September 12: Florida prison system, under fire, releases data on inmate deaths September 9, 2014, Miami Herald: Florida’s Department of Corrections, facing intensifying scrutiny over a growing number of suspicious inmate deaths and reports of alleged abuse involving prison guards, introduced the online database cataloging all inmate deaths over the past 14 years. The database lists inmates by name, prison, race and manner of death, and supplies other details that the Miami Herald had been trying to obtain from the department since May, when the newspaper began a series of articles about prison deaths. September 12: The “Silent Epidemic” Of Domestic Violence By Police Officers September 10, 2014, Crime Report: National studies show that 40 percent of police families experience domestic violence, compared with 10 percent of the general public, says the Philadelphia Daily News. The paper calls it “a silent epidemic, its victims often trapped in the shadows of their own homes, lost in a debilitating mix of fear, confusion, anxiety and doubt.” Philadelphia police data show that 164 officers have had domestic-abuse complaints filed against them in the past five years. Of that lot, 11 cops were fired and criminally charged, and only three were successfully prosecuted. Most got back their old jobs. The numbers suggest that the problem is small, but domestic-violence experts say the issue is bigger than what the stats show. “That [figure] seems incredibly low to me, although not terribly surprising in that domestic-violence incidents are vastly underreported,” said Debasri Ghosh of Women’s Way, which advocates for women and funds projects to help them. September 11: NJ police camera bill signed into law September 10, A law requiring all new municipal police patrol vehicles be equipped with video cameras was signed into law on Wednesday. Governor Chris Christie signed the bill Wednesday evening. The bill requires all municipal police departments to equip newly purchased or leased vehicles that are used primarily for traffic stops with an in-car camera, or equip patrol officers with body cameras as a more affordable option. A $25 surcharge on DWI convictions was set aside by the legislation to provide funding for the new equipment. September 11: Police body cameras to be mandatory under Norcross’ proposed bill I believe NJ is the first state to require cameras through legislation: In this case they just passed legislation to require dash cams (as noted above) and if this legislation passes patrol officers in that state will have dash cams and on body cameras. Lt. Dan: September 11, 2014, CHERRY HILL TWP. — Sen. Donald Nocross (D-5, of Camden) on Thursday announced he was drafting legislation that would require all police officers on patrol to wear body cameras. The state senator announced the proposed legislation during a press conference outside the Cherry Hill Police Department with Assemblyman Paul Moriarty (D-4, of Washington Township), one day after Gov. Chris Christie signed into law a bill championed by the assemblyman requiring all municipal patrol cars be equipped with cameras. September 11: Huge Los Angeles Raid Nets $90M in Cartel Money September 11, 2014, AP: Raids in the fashion district of Los Angeles led to the seizure of $90 million — including $70 million of it in cash — in a massive crackdown on Mexican cartels’ attempts to use international trade to launder money from U.S. drug sales, federal authorities said. The raids Wednesday came after three separate federal indictments in the biggest investigation to date into trade-based drug money laundering, said Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office in Los Angeles. About 1,000 law enforcement officers fanned out across the city’s downtown to search dozens of businesses suspected of taking bulk cash funneled by drug cartels for clothing exported to Mexico. September 11: L.A. County Sheriff’s Department overstated violent crimes, audit finds This report was a result of an audit completed at LAPD which we previously reported on. Consider completing an audit of your stats. If you need some assistance give us a call. LT. Dan. September 11, 2014, LA Times: An initial review of crime statistics at the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department released Thursday found that the agency tends to overstate violent crime.. An audit of 240 assaults from six sheriff’s stations found that department personnel misclassified more than 31% of minor assaults as serious offenses, while incorrectly filing about 3% of serious attacks as minor ones. September 11: Atlantic City Police Department may be replaced by county-run force September 10, 2014, press of Atlantic City: Atlantic City may consider disbanding its police force in favor of a county-based service, in order to save money as casino closings decimate the resort’s tax base. September 10: Coral Gables FL. Police Chief Dennis Weiner resigns amid crime statistics controversy This is another high risk area for any department, and a number of law enforcement CEO’s have had issues in this area. This is a great opportunity to do an audit. Call if you would like some assistance, as we have done several of these. LT. Dan September 10, 2014, Local10.com: The Chief was accused of manipulating crime statistics to make city appear safer. September 10: Fort Worth police chief gets vote of confidence September 9, 2014, WFAA.com: FORT WORTH — The City of Fort Worth is standing by police Chief Jeff Halstead. Following an executive session of the City Council Tuesday evening, Mayor Betsy Price announced an action plan that will address concerns about racial harmony within the police department. September 10: Dallas police to sideline officers for a month after shootings, other traumatic events September 4, 2014, Dallas police are planning sweeping changes to the way they handle officers involved in shootings and other traumatic incidents. On the heels of six shootings by police last month, commanders will now mandate that officers who fire their weapons go through more frequent psychological counseling and that they remain off the streets for a full month. Assistant Chief Tom Lawrence told officer association leaders of the plans Thursday. Some of the ideas are still preliminary. But he said the new strategy starts immediately for shootings. The changes gave the association leaders some pause, but Lawrence framed the idea as a way to keep officers in good mental health. He said officers are deeply affected when they use deadly force. September 10: Seattle police officer crowd funds lawsuit September 6, Seattle Times: SEATTLE — A Seattle police officer suing to block new use-of-force policies has set up an Internet fundraising page to help pay for the legal fight, calling the federally mandated reforms “the greatest threat to the city’s public safety in our time.” Robert Mahoney, the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit brought by 113 officers, created the crowdfunding page Saturday on the website GoFundMe. So far, the page lists $1,570 in donations on a goal of raising $100,000. Just Monday, a Seattle attorney agreed to represent Mahoney and another officer in the case after the group of officers initially filed suit May 28 without legal representation. The attorney, Athan Tramountanas, declined in an interview Thursday to reveal whether he is being paid. September 10: NOPD among the most racially balanced U.S. police departments; Hispanic officers lacking across country I am not sure what the take a way is when NOPD is currently under a DOJ consent decree, with a history of major problems. If you review the newsletter posting from August 23, 2014, regarding studies on this issue, it also raises some interesting questions. August 23, 2014: Washington Post: Do diverse police forces treat their communities more fairly than almost-all-white ones like Ferguson’s? http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/storyline/wp/2014/08/22/do-diverse-police-forces-treat-their-communities-more-fairly-than-all-white-ones-like-fergusons/ Lt. Dan September 7, 2014, NOLA.com. A new analysis by The Associated Press found that the racial gap between black police officers and the communities where they work has narrowed over the past generation, particularly in departments that once were the least diverse. New Orleans, for example, fields one of the most racially balanced police departments in the country. A much larger disparity, however, is now seen in the low number of Hispanic officers in U.S. police departments. In Waco, Texas, for example, the community is more than 30 percent Hispanic, but the police department of 231 full-time sworn officers has only 27 Hispanics. September 10: Bay area police agencies consider body cameras September 2, 2014, 10News: The Tampa Police Department has around 300 dash cameras mounted in their squad cars. Chief Jane Castor tells 10 News that she hopes to be testing the new body camera technology on officers by the end of the year. The officer can wear the camera on his or her uniform or glasses. Castor believes the body cameras are a trend spreading across the country. “Within the next five years, every police officer in the nation will have a body-worn camera on,” says Castor. Castor is leading the charge to get the body cameras for more than 500 of her patrol officers and hopes to have 60 test cameras, on officers in 2014. September 10: I-Team: Harbor Police officer arrested on numerous fraud charges September 9, 2014, WDSU News, NEW ORLEANS —A 12-year veteran of the Harbor Police Department has been arrested on fraud charges, the WDSU I-Team has learned. In a statement, Harbor Police officials told WDSU that the officer was under investigation for alleged fraudulent use of a fuel card, and that the alleged misuse “spanned into other parishes.” Officials said an audit raised concerns regarding the use of the fuel cards and prompted the investigation. September 9: Military surplus equipment has saved officers’ lives, needs better oversight, Police Foundation President Jim Bueermann tells US Senate Committee September 9, 2014, Police Foundation Newsletter: WASHINGTON – Surplus military equipment provided to law enforcement agencies has saved lives and should be preserved, but needs better oversight and regulations, Police Foundation President Jim Bueermann told a Senate committee hearing Tuesday. The Police Foundation recommends tighter controls and more transparency in the program to ensure proper use. Police agencies seeking surplus equipment should: Provide proof that they have received public input, and local governing body approval of acquisition of property, Implement a publicly accessible policy governing the use of armored vehicles and tactical units, and Make publicly available a report on when and how it has utilized armored vehicles and tactical units. September 9: Attorney General Holder Announces New Drug Take-Back Effort to Help Tackle Rising Threat of Prescription Drug Addiction and Opioid Abuse September 8, 2014, DOJ Web News: New DEA Policy Will Authorize Pharmacies, Hospitals to Serve as Authorized Drop-off Sites for Unused Medications September 9: Justice Department jeopardizes Ferguson case September 9, 2014, CNN – Editorial: (CNN) — If the United States Department of Justice has any real interest in obtaining justice in the tragic shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown, Attorney General Eric Holder’s announcement of a new civil rights investigation in Ferguson, Missouri, (population 21,000) was a step in the wrong direction. September 9: Justice Department Watchdog Complains Of Interference September 9, 2014, Huffington Post: WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department’s inspector general said Tuesday that his staff is routinely blocked from getting access to documents it needs for audits and reviews of the department and its law enforcement agencies. The interference causes delays in investigations and has several times required the intervention of Attorney General Eric Holder or his deputy to ensure that the records are ultimately turned over, Michael Horowitz, the inspector general, told members of Congress. Horowitz’s appearance before the House Judiciary Committee came one month after nearly 50 inspectors general from a broad spectrum of federal agencies complained in a letter to Congress about similar obstruction from the departments they monitor. The inspectors general said in that letter that congressional action might be needed to ensure compliance with their requests. Transcript of testimony: http://www.justice.gov/oig/testimony/t140909.pdf September 9: Albuquerque officials to Nevada to study police September 9, 2014, KOAT.com: ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. —Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry and the city’s police chief are in Las Vegas, Nevada, to study how that city reformed following a series of police shootings. September 9: Indy Council Clears Funding For More Police September 9, 2014, Inside Indiana Business: The Indianapolis City-County Council has approved an increase in the public safety tax rate to fund the addition of about 280 Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers by 2018. Council Minority Leader Michael McQuillen says the new hires will result in the largest police force in the department’s history. September 9, D.C. is the Wild West when enforcing tickets for traffic violators, audit finds September 8, 2014, Washington Post: In Washington, D.C., where issuing traffic citations is a $179 million-a-year business, drivers get speeding tickets for violations they don’t commit and for vehicles they’ve never owned. Those are among the findings in a 115-page audit of the three city agencies that issued nearly 2.5 million parking and traffic tickets in fiscal 2013, according to a withering report issued Monday by the D.C. inspector general. Link to audit report: http://app.oig.dc.gov/news/view2.asp?url=release10%2FPATE%5Ffinal%5F9%2D8%2D2014%2Epdf&mode=release&archived=0&month=00000&agency=0 September 9: HealthCare.gov Breached, No Data Stolen September 5, 2014, Govt. Tech: The healthcare portal used by more than 5 million Americans continues to have growing pains. Pescatore said. “In general, the security of health-care sites is not great. These portals were rushed out there and they’re certainly not looking much better than the rest of the health-care industry.” Check out the 2013 Breach List published by the Identity Theft Resource Center revealed that the health-care sector accounted for 43 percent of all reported data breaches, far more than any other sector. http://www.idtheftcenter.org/ITRC-Surveys-Studies/2013-data-breaches.html September 8: Albuquerque PD DOJ Changes September 8, 2014, KOAT Albuquerque (video) It’s been six months since the Department of Justice finished its investigation. This newscast video provides some limited insight into the Albuquerque Police Department actions. September 8: Judge Won’t Disband Polygamous Sect Police September 8, 2014, AP: The police agency that oversees Warren Jeffs’ polygamous sect on the Utah-Arizona border will remain intact after a federal judge rejected the latest request from the Arizona attorney general to disband the department. U.S. District Judge James Teilborg acknowledged in a ruling last week that disbanding the police unit could decrease discrimination in the twin communities of Colorado City, Arizona, and Hildale, Utah. But, Teilborg said removing their authority and handing power over to county sheriffs would burden the twin cities and the states “with a layer of bureaucracy extending into potential perpetuity.” September 5: DOJ announces Pattern or Practice Investigation into Ferguson Police Department September 4, 2014, DOJ News: According to AG Eric Holder, The DOJ has determined that there is cause for the Justice Department to open an investigation to determine whether Ferguson Police officials have engaged in a pattern or practice of violations of the U.S. Constitution or federal law. “In Ferguson, our investigation will assess the police department’s use of force, including deadly force. It will analyze stops, searches, and arrests. And it will examine the treatment of individuals detained at Ferguson’s city jail, in addition to other potentially discriminatory policing techniques and tactics that are brought to light.” “At the same time, I want to make very clear that – as this investigation unfolds and evolves – we will follow the facts and the law wherever they may lead. And if, at any point, we find reason to expand our inquiry to include additional police forces in neighboring jurisdictions, we will not hesitate to do so.” September 5: Chicago police to get 11 percent raise over 5 years September 5, 2014: Chicago Tribune: The new pact, set for review by top union officials late Thursday before going to rank-and-file members, does not require police officers to take part in a city wellness program that other unions have agreed to, the source said. It also does not address the city’s underfunded police pension system, the source said. Without changes to the police and firefighter pension systems, the city could end up being forced to pay $550 million in additional pension payments in 2016. September 5: With Reporting Voluntary, FBI Justifiable Homicide Data “Very Incomplete” September 4, 2014, The Crime Report: It isn’t required that agencies submit justifiable homicide data in the “Supplementary Homicide Report.” This makes the largest database of justifiable homicides in the U.S. very incomplete. Among the missing states is New York, which had 684 killings in 2012. The third-most populated state, which likely had a number of justifiable homicides, doesn’t report justifiable homicide data, says the FBI. Data from other highly populous states are missing or compromised as well. September 5: New York Police Officers to Start Using Body Cameras in a Pilot Program September 4, 2014, New York Times: The New York Police Department will begin equipping a small number of its officers with wearable video cameras, a pilot program geared toward eventually outfitting the nation’s largest police force with technology that promises greater accountability. A total of 60 cameras will be deployed in the coming months in five high-crime police precincts, one in each of the city’s five boroughs, Commissioner William J. Bratton said on Thursday. A federal judge last year ordered the department to test the cameras for one year in five precincts as a way of evaluating their effectiveness in curbing unconstitutional stop-and-frisk interactions by officers. The court ordered an independent monitor to help set the policy for the cameras, though that order has been delayed pending an appeal. Mr. Bratton said the department was proceeding “independent of the order” because the subject is “too important to wait.” The announcement also comes in advance of federal guidelines on body cameras worn by the police, expected to be released by the Justice Department in the coming weeks. September 5: Audit OKs Justice Department’s use of ‘material witness’ detention powers September 4, 2014, McClatchy DC: WASHINGTON — Justice Department investigators have largely given a thumbs-up to the department’s use of its powerful ‘material witness’ detention powers.In a 106-page report, the department’s Office of Inspector General closely examined 10 cases in which 12 individuals were held under the statute that allows arrest and detention of a person whose “testimony is material in a criminal proceeding.” Link to report: http://www.justice.gov/oig/reports/2014/s1409r.pdf September 4: Feds launch probe of Ferguson police department September 4, 2014, (CNN) — U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced Thursday a Justice Department investigation into the Ferguson, Missouri, police department, which has come under fire for its past practices in the uproar over the shooting of Michael Brown. “Our investigation will assess the police department’s use of force, including deadly force. It will analyze stops, searches and arrests. And it will examine the treatment of individuals detained at Ferguson’s city jail,” he said. The COPS Collaborative Reform Technical Assistance process with the SLCPD is a voluntary process that will include an open, independent and objective assessment of key operational areas of the police department, such as training, use of force, handling mass demonstrations, stops, searches, arrests, and fair and impartial policing. The assessment will include the SLCPD police academy which trains officers for many police departments in the region, including the FPD. The findings of this assessment, and recommendations to address any deficiencies that it uncovers, will be provided in a public report and shared with the community. Additionally, SLCPD Chief Jon Belmar has requested that COPS conduct an after action report on the SLCPD’s response to the protests following the shooting of Michael Brown. September 4: FBI mum on why former Milwaukee chief still holds top job September 4, 2014, JS Online: The former chief of the FBI Milwaukee office — believed to have encouraged perjury and then lied to investigators — is worthless as a witness and dishonors an agency that places a premium on integrity, according to bureau veterans and law enforcement experts. But Teresa Carlson remains a high-ranking FBI official in Washington, D.C., and the agency won’t say whether she has been demoted, suspended or disciplined in any way. Sept 4: Federal agencies investigating Hebron Ohio PD September 4, 2014, nwitimes.com : HEBRON | Federal agents have seized documents from the Hebron Police Department in an ongoing investigation. Hebron Acting Police Chief Tony Frencl confirmed Wednesday that the FBI and Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms have been to the Hebron Police Department to collect documents. September 4: Departments use technology to ID troubled officers September 4, 2014, AP: While such “early warning systems” are often treated as a cure-all, experts say, little research exists on their effectiveness or — more importantly — if they’re even being properly used. September 3: Justice Department to investigate Ferguson police in wake of shooting September 3, 2014, FOX News: The Department of Justice is reportedly launching a civil rights investigation into the Ferguson Police Department after an unarmed black teen was fatally shot by one of the department’s officers. The Washington Post reported Wednesday that the investigation by Attorney General Eric Holder may be announced as early as Thursday, and will be led by the department’s civil rights division. The probe will be separate and broader than a previously announced DOJ probe into the police shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown, according to the Post. The shooting touched off weeks of sometime violent protests in the Missouri town, which is a suburb of St. Louis. September 3: Attorney says feds investigating shootings by Chicago police September 2, 2014, Chicago Suns Time: An attorney who specializes in representing cops in court has warned the president of the Fraternal Order of Police about a federal investigation into shootings by Chicago Police officers. Daniel Herbert, a former Chicago Police officer and former Cook County prosecutor, sent a letter Friday to FOP President Dean Angelo saying he learned the FBI and the U.S. attorney’s office were looking into “certain police-involved shootings, specifically ones in which an offender’s gun was not recovered.” September 3: Judge Says Los Angeles Law Enforcement Doesn’t Need To Turn Over License Plate Reader Data September 3: NYPD goes to ‘Twitter school’ September 3, 2014, NEW YORK (WPIX) — If there’s anything we’ve learned in recent years, social media could be your best friend – that’s if it’s used correctly. The New York City Police Department is learning the hard way after a few epic blunders caused more damage than good. It’s now prompted officials to send officers to a so-called “Twitter school.” September 3: D.C. cops making big investment in body cameras for patrol September 3, 2014, Washington Times: The Metropolitan Police Department plans to issue body-mounted cameras to a test group of officers beginning Oct. 1 as part of a six-month citywide pilot program to explore the technology. Details of the rollout emerged during a stakeholder meeting Wednesday involving police, lawyers and privacy advocates, some of whom confirmed the plans privately because an official announcement has not yet been made. The department has been stocking up on equipment for the pilot program over the last several months, ordering more than $280,000 worth of on-body camera equipment, accessories and software from three different companies, according to purchase orders obtained by The Washington Times. As of this week, police had received at least 250 on-body cameras, with dozens more on the way, according to purchase orders and invoices. September 3: Iveda’s live-streaming body cam software maximizes real-time awareness September 3, 2014, Police One: Multiple parties can view live-streaming video from multiple locations – and video is stored even if the recording device is destroyed September 3: St. Louis County reveals cost for Ferguson law enforcement September 2, 2014, BizJournal: St. Louis County will spend more than $4 million on its response to the crisis in Ferguson that followed the police shooting death of Michael Brown, the municipality’s COO, Garry Earls, said in an interview Tuesday. That amount, which was calculated as of Saturday, includes $2.5 million in overtime for police work. Earls said damage to police vehicles from rioters would cost about $160,000, and food and supplies would cost about $130,000. About $1 million of the $4 million was allocated for Ferguson residents by the St. Louis County Council last month. Police departments in municipalities around the St. Louis area sent officers to the chaotic scene that unfolded last month. They, too, face overtime costs. The state of Missouri also faces unspecified costs, as Gov. Jay Nixon sent in the Missouri National Guard to lead the law enforcement response after St. Louis County faced criticism related to its tactics. September 3: Tucson Police chief speaks on new policy: Ticket quota or proactive policing? September 3, 2014, TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) – Some call it a quota, but the top cop in Tucson, Chief Roberto Villasenor, calls it proactive policing Tonight, we are hearing from the Tucson Police Officers Association about a requirement officers now face, to write one traffic citation a day. According to a memo dated July 24th, 2014 Chief Villasenor said that citation could not be a written warning or an equipment repair citation. September 2: Cameron McLay named chief of the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police September 2, 2014, PITTSBURGH — Mayor William Peduto and Public Safety Director Stephen A. Bucar announced the hiring of Cameron McLay as the next chief of the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police on Tuesday. McLay, 56, is the former police captain from Madison, Wisconsin and a leadership development consultant for the International Association of Chiefs of Police. September 2: Guns still missing five months after ND Game and Fish audit September 2, 2014: WatchDogND: BISMARCK, N.D. — More than 100 guns are still missing from the North Dakota Game and Fish Department’s hunter safety education program, some 20 weeks after an audit identified the problem. Link to audit report: http://watchdog.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/1/files/2014/08/228314382-Game-Fish-Audit.pdf September 1: Dozens of police agencies report loss of Pentagon-supplied military weapons September 1, 2014, ABC: 145 local law enforcement agencies across the country have been suspended from the program for losing weapons. Three states — Alabama, North Carolina and Minnesota — also have been suspended. A Pentagon spokesman told the station that 8,000 law enforcement agencies participate in the 1033 program and that 98 percent remain in good standing. September 1: Visible tattoo ban for San Antonio police officers September 1, 2014, Click 2 Houston: SAN ANTONIO – Beginning this month, the San Antonio Police department is banning officers from having visible tattoos. August 31: Okla. cop charged with assaulting 8 black women; NAACP seeks hate crime charges August 31, 2014, An Oklahoma City police officer was charged Friday with raping or sexually abusing eight black women, and the NAACP is asking the U.S. Justice Department to file hate crime charges. Officer Daniel Holtzclaw, 27, was charged with 16 counts, including first-degree rape, sexual battery, forcible oral sodomy, indecent exposure and stalking, ABC-affiliated KOCO-TV reported. Mr. Holtzclaw is accused of raping at least two women while on duty and forcing several women to expose themselves and perform sex acts to keep themselves from being arrested. August 30: Virgin Island PD head detective charged with making false report against fellow officer August 30, 2014, Virgin Island News: ST. THOMAS – The V.I. Police Department’s chief of detectives has been charged with falsifying evidence and making a false report. Milton Petersen Sr., a former police chief in the St. Thomas-St. John District who has been with the department for 24 years, was handcuffed and arrested at 6:30 a.m. Thursday after Magistrate Henry Carr signed a warrant for the police lieutenant’s arrest on Wednesday. Due to the large number of cases we recommend the link below. We do not endorse the link or its views but have found it to be a good source of police misconduct information. August 29: Google Drones: Tech Giant Plans Robot Fleet August 29, 2014, Govt. Tech: “Project Wing”, announced Thursday, escalates Google’s technological arms race with rival Amazon, which is also experimenting with self-flying vehicles to carry items bought by customers off its online store. August 29: Federal judge accepts agreement between DOJ, city of Portland over treatment of mentally ill A federal judge has accepted the settlement between the U.S. Department of Justice and the city of Portland on reforms intended to improve the way police deal with mentally ill people. U.S. District Judge Michael Simon said Friday he wants annual progress reports, and he set the first such hearing for September 2015. The Justice Department began an investigation three years ago to examine whether Portland police engaged in a “pattern or practice” of excessive force when dealing with the mentally ill. Agency officials concluded such a pattern exists, and they began negotiating with city leaders on reforms. Among the reforms, the city must create a crisis-intervention team, expand its mobile crisis units from a single vehicle to one vehicle per precinct and complete investigations of officer misconduct within 180 days. August 29: Police union tries to block camera plan for Miami-Dade officers August 22, 2014, Miami Herald: Miami-Dade’s police union on Friday moved to thwart Mayor Carlos Gimenez’s plan to equip all county patrol officers with wearable surveillance cameras, saying the devices could place “the lives of the public and the officers in danger.” In a written grievance filed with the county’s police chief, a union lawyer wrote that wearing the cameras “will distract officers from their duties, and hamper their ability to act and react in dangerous situations …” February 29: Following Ferguson, Push for Federal Oversight of Local Law Enforcement February 29, 2014, FedAgentNews: Members of the Congressional Black Caucus and other organizations have sent a letter to President Obama urging greater federal oversight of local law enforcement and calling for a “national commission to review existing police policies and practices.” The letter urges the administration to take action on several fronts: •Training: •Accountability •Diversity: “” •Engagement: •Demilitarization: •Examination and Change: •Oversight: August 29: Denver Post review: Lengthy delays in sheriff’s disciplinary process August 27, 2014, Denver Post: A Denver Post analysis found it takes an average of more than 10 months for the Denver Sheriff Department to discipline one of its deputies. In many cases, it takes well over a year whether a deputy left work early, released the wrong inmate or used excessive force, The Post’s analysis of disciplinary records from January 2012 to July 2014 found. Link to Denver Post Analysis https://public.tableausoftware.com/profile/kevin.hamm#!/vizhome/DenverSheriff/Dashboard1 The DOJ typically has used the following criteria for completion of investigations; this excerpt is from the New Orleans Consent Decree. This might be a good subject for an audit of IA procedures. If you would like an audit of your IA process or information on conducting one, give us a call. Lt. Dan G.402 Investigative time frame o Completed within 90 days of the receipt of the complaint o If sustained another 30 days to determine and impose discipline Documented extenuating circumstances 60 days
- Investigations subject to appropriate interruption (tolling period) as necessary to conduct a concurrent criminal investigation or as provided by law.