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NM Police Officer Receives over 4 Years for Sexual Abuse

NM Police Officer Receives over 4 Years for Sexual Abuse


On November 6, 2012, the Department of Justice announced that a former police officer with the Navajo Police Department (NPD) was sentenced to four years by a federal court for an incident that occurred on January 25, 2009.  The former police officer’s name is Lawrence Etsitty.  He pleaded guilty earlier in the year and admitted to violating a woman’s civil rights as she was handcuffed.  


Court documents indicate that Etsitty arrested the female victim outside of the Fire Rock Casino in Churchrock, New Mexico around 2:40 a.m. on January 25, 2009.  He handcuffed the victim, put her in the backseat of his squad car, and drove her to an isolated part of the desert.  Etsitty then opened the back door the squad car and pulled the victim toward him with force.  He proceeded to grope the victim while she struggled to get away from his touching, kissing, and groping.  


The victim asked Etsitty to take her home and he eventually agreed to drop her off.  He dropped the victim off at a parking lot near her home and she ran away.  


Etsitty was questioned by the FBI on January 27, 2009, and he made false statements about the violation of civil rights.  He later wrote the victim a letter and apologized for the groping and kissing her and stated the violations should have never happened.  He received 54 months in prison and three years of supervised release, and he cannot act in a law enforcement capacity ever again.  


The Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division, Thomas E. Perez, stated, “We commend the courage of the victim in coming forward and speaking out about this terrible crime.  The Department of Justice and the Civil Rights Division will continue to vigorously investigate and prosecute these crimes.”


Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation
 

Cops

Cops

The Work of Cops


Cops are a critical component of the criminal justice system in the United States. The role of cops depends largely on the type and size of organization. Cops work to apprehend people who break the law and then give warnings or citations if necessary. The job also includes writing police reports and keeping records of the events that they are involved in.
Within a jurisdiction, cops will patrol and investigate activity that is considered suspicious. They also respond to civilian calls to investigate any suspicious matters.  
Levels of Enforcement


Cops can work at different levels of the government, for example for a local government up to a federal agency. Depending on this, the work can vary greatly.
On a local and state level, uniformed cops respond to calls and maintain patrols. A lot of the work involves paperwork and responding to calls. They can investigate crimes, help give first aid, direct traffic in an accident, or may just focus on a specific duty if the department assigns it.
Depending on the area, cops may try to build relationships with the individuals in the neighbor, or community policing. This is often found in urban areas and it helps mobilize the neighborhood.
Cops can train in specific fields depending on the level of government. On a local level, cops can work in courts as bailiffs or in jails. Some county level cops also work as sheriffs or deputy sheriffs. 
On a state or federal levels, cops can specialize in fields such as firearm instruction, fingerprint identification, canine corps, harbor patrol, emergency response teams, or special weapons and tactics. State cops can also work as highway patrol officers or state troopers. They may also say the Miranda rights, but it is not necessary unless they plan to run an interrogation.

What Can Cops Do?
Cops are not above the law and must follow the same rules as other civilians. When on the job and making an arrest, there are certain protocols that cops must follow. While they do not have to explain the crime that a person is being arrested for, they cannot use any form of brutality or excessive force. They can respond to an arrested arrest or violent actions with reasonable force. 

Becoming a Cop


The requirements to become a cop can range from a high school diploma to graduate level studies depending on the position. Most cops take part in a training academy from their agency. 

Police Officer

 Police Officer

Becoming a Police Officer


A police officer is an important component of the law enforcement and criminal justice system in the United States. The role of an officer depends mainly on the type and size of organization. An officer’s role is to apprehend people who break the law and then give warnings or citations if necessary. The job also includes writing police reports and keeping records of the events that they are involved in.
Within a given jurisdiction, an officer will patrol and investigate activity that is considered suspicious. They can also respond to civilian calls to investigate any suspicious matters.  
Levels of Enforcement
An officer can work on different levels of the government, for example for a local government up to a federal agency. Depending on this, the work involved can vary greatly.


Local and state level
Uniformed cops respond to calls and maintain patrols.
Involves paperwork and responding to calls.
Investigate crimes, give first aid when necessary, direct traffic in an accident.
Can be assigned to a specific duty if the department assigns it.
Build a relationship with the individuals and citizens in the neighbor, which is also known as community policing. This is often done in urban areas, which allows the police force to help mobilize the neighborhood.
Special training to work for positions such as a court bailiff or a guard at a prison.
Can also work as a sheriff or a deputy sheriff.
State or federal level
A cop can specialize in certain fields such as firearm instruction, fingerprint identification, canine corps, harbor patrol, emergency response groups, or special weapons and tactics.
A state cop can also work as highway patrol officers or state troopers.
What Can An Officer Legally Do?
An officer is not above the law and must follow the same rules as other civilians. When on the job and making an arrest, there are certain protocols that an officer must follow. While he or she does not have to explain the crime that a person is being arrested for, he or she cannot use any form of brutality or excessive force. An officer can respond to an arrested arrest or violent actions with reasonable force. 
Becoming an Officer
The requirements to become an officer can range from a high school diploma to graduate level studies depending on the position. Most cops take part in a training academy from their agency. Most local town districts or government agencies can provide more information on how to become a police officer.

Retired Officer Gets 19 Years for Sexually Exploiting Minor

Retired Officer Gets 19 Years for Sexually Exploiting Minor


On November 1, 2012, David M Ketchmark, the Acting US Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a retired police officer from Springfield, Missouri was sentenced for sexually exploiting a minor and videotaping the minor for child pornography.  The police officer was employed with the Springfield Police Department from 1986 to 2006.


The police officer’s name is Jack Van Matre, and he was sentenced by U.S District Judge Richard E. Dorr.  He received 19 years and seven months in federal prison without the chance of parole.  Matre pleaded guilty on June 1, 2012 to using the minor the produce child pornography on at least two different occasions from August 1 to October 7, 2011.  


Court documents indicate that that the 14-year-old found hidden video cameras in fake ductwork in the ceilings of the bedroom and bathroom at Matre’s residence.  He later admitted to the court that he cut holes in the ceiling to install vent covers and then installed the two cameras.  He manually positioned the cameras from the attic at first, but he admitted that he later bought cameras that were controlled through a wireless connection from his personal computer.  


During the forensic analysis, investigators found videos of the minor that were recorded with the hidden cameras.  The investigators found 16 different videos stored on Matre’s computers that showed the victim and two other minors undressing.  Police officers also discovered that Matre was part of two other investigations as he was suspected of sexually assaulting three minor children over a span of six years.  


The case was investigated by the FBI and the Springfield, Missouri Police Department.  Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher was in charge of prosecution.  


The investigation and sentencing serve as a strict reminder that no police officer is above the law.  


Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation
 

Three Former Jackson Police Officers Accepted Bribes

Three Former Jackson Police Officers Accepted Bribes


On October 17, 2012, the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Mississippi announced that two former police officers for the Jackson Police Department, Monyette Quintel Jefferson and Terence Dale Jenkins, pleaded guilty to accepting bribes for accepting bribes from an FBI undercover agent.  Former officer Anthony Ricardo Payne is still awaiting trial.  The bribes relate to protecting drug transactions.  


On June 10, 2010, Jefferson met with the undercover agent.  He believed the agent was a drug trafficker and agreed to protect a shipment of 100 kilograms of cocaine being flown in on an airplane to Jackson.  Jackson and Anthony Ricardo Payne met with the undercover agent at the Metro Center Mall on June 25, 2010, the same day the shipment was supposed to arrive.  


Later in the afternoon, Jefferson traveled to the Hawkins Airport in his patrol car and met with the undercover agent in the parking lot.  At about 3:55 p.m., another undercover agent met with the first undercover agent and bought 20 kilograms of cocaine.  The first undercover agent paid Jenkins $5,000 for his protection, and Jenkins then followed the undercover agent to another transaction along Interstate 20 in Jackson.  


At 4:10 p.m, Payne drove his patrol vehicle to the parking lot of the airport and the undercover agent proceeded to do the same drug exchange as before.  The undercover agent gave Payne $5,000 for his assistance, and Payne traveled to assist with another transaction on Hanging Moss Road in Jackson.  The undercover agent traveled back to the airport and gave Jefferson $6,000 for protection during both of the transactions.  


Jefferson and Jenkins are scheduled for sentencing on January 7, 2013.  They are subject to a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.  Payne is scheduled for a trial on November 6, 2012.  


Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation

NYPD Officers Sentenced for Distributing Firearms/Stolen Goods

NYPD Officers Sentenced for Distributing Firearms/Stolen Goods


On October 10, 2012, the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York announced that three former NYPD officers were sentenced for conspiring to transport firearms and stolen goods across state lines.  Eddie Goris was sentenced to 36 months in prison, and Richard Melnik and John Mahoney both received 21 months.  


Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara stated, “These three sentencings are sad occasions in the history of the finest police department in the country.  With them, we are that much closer to putting this sordid chapter behind us.”


According to court documents, Goris moved firearms and stolen goods across state lines that were defaced.  He took two trips to transport slot machines from Atlantic City to New York, and he two multiple trips to smuggle cigarettes across state lines.  During the final trip, he transported defaced firearms—some of which were high-powered rifles—from New Jersey to New York.  He was paid $30,000 during the schemes.


Melnik made multiple trips between New Jersey and New York to smuggle cigarettes. During his last trip, he smuggled two stolen slot machines from Atlantic City to New Jersey and New York.  He was paid $10,500 during the schemes.  


Mahoney also transported cigarettes and stolen slot machines on three different occasions.  He was paid $4,500 during the schemes.  

Goris received three years of supervised release and agreed to forfeit $30,000.  Melnik received one year of supervised release and he was ordered to forfeit $5,000.  Mahoney received two years of supervised release and he was ordered to forfeit $4,500.  


There are 9 other defendants involved in this case.  Some of the defendants have already been sentenced, and some are still awaiting sentencing.  The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Internal Affairs Bureau of the NYPD.  


Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation
 

St Louis Sergeant Guilty of Drug Charges

St Louis Sergeant Guilty of Drug Charges


According to the US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Missouri, Larry J Davis received 57 months in prison for seizing packages of marijuana and then diverting and distributing the same packages for sale.  He is believed to have distributed about 60 to 80 kilograms of seized marijuana.  


When Davis was indicted, he immediately resigned from the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.  


While working for the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, Davis was in control of the Central Patrol-Division-Special Operations Group—a division directly responsible for investigations into gang activity and drug distribution.  


During his plea agreement, Davis admitted that he visited package delivery companies around St. Louis between 2010 and 2012 and seized packages he believed contained marijuana.  He was supposed to return the seized package to the police department or the laboratory, but he took the packages to his personal residence on Eichelberger and his brother’s residence in St. Louis County.  


After opening the packages, Davis and his brother sold and distributed the marijuana.  In order to hide his criminal actions, Davis did not submit any police reports that indicated he seized the packages.  A criminal investigation found Davis was seizing the packages and selling the drugs for his own profit.  


The brothers agreed to forfeit two vehicles and cash as part of the plea agreement.  Davis announced his guilty plea before United States District Judge Carol E. Jackson.  


FBI Special Agent in Charge Dean C. Bryant stated, “The fact that Davis was a police officer and was willing to conduct this criminal activity is extremely disappointing.  However, the greatest damage done in this case is how he undermined the public’s trust in law enforcement.”


The investigation was handled by the FBI Public Corruption Task Force and the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.  


Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation

Puerto Rico Officers Indicted for Civil Rights Charges

Puerto Rico Officers Indicted for Civil Rights Charges


On October 15, 2012, the Department of Justice announced that Puerto Rico Lieutenant Erick Rivera Nazario and Officer Jimmy Rodriguez Vegas were charged for violating civil rights after using excessive force on two men.  Rivera was also charged with perjury for making false statements in an investigation into the civil rights violations.  


According to court documents, Rivera and Rodriguez violated the rights of the victims, Jose Irizarry Perez, and his father, Jose Irizarry Muniz, as they were celebrating election results.  The two officers are charged with beating the two men with police batons at the Las Colinas housing development in Yauco, Puerto Rico, on November 5, 2008.  


Rivera was a sergeant at the time and is charged with failing to stop harm to the victims by Rodriguez.  Rivera was supposed to supervise Rodriquez because of his ranking, but Rodriquez further assaulted the victims.  


When an investigation was launched for the assaults, Rivera was made to testify before a federal grand jury.  He was charged with perjury after he lied about his actions and observation on the day of the crimes.  


Irizarry Perez died because of his injuries on November 5, 2008, but the indictment does not contain charges for his death.  


Rivera faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a fine up to $250,000 for each of the four counts of civil rights violations.  He faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a fine up to $250,000 for making false statements to the federal grand jury.  


Rodriguez faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a fine up to $250,000 for each count of civil rights violations.  


The San Juan Division of the FBI is investigating the case, and the investigation is still occurring.  


Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation

Warming Up a Cold Case

Warming Up a Cold Case

In law, some cases are never prosecuted because no suspect is ever located. In other cases, there are suspects but there is not enough evidence to prosecute. Cases that remain unsolved are called cold cases.
 
 
Cold cases are often handled by special divisions in law enforcement. They may for example begin to examine a cold case when new evidence has been presented; there may be an individual that decided to come forward with evidence or with a witness testimony. Those types of evidence may be enough to reopen a cold case.
 
 
Cold cases may also be check and reviewed periodically, depending on the jurisdiction. Certain types of cases tend to be reviewed more frequently, such as missing children. Cases may be reviewed once evidence in another case matches the scenario in the cold case, such as the manner in which a new crime was committed. 
 
 

Police Citation Explained

Police Citation Explained

A police citation, which is commonly called a ‘ticket’, is official documentation stating that an individual has been made aware of a violation by an officer of the law. Police citations can be issued in a variety of spectrums, ranging from vehicular violations to civil violations. Upon the receipt of a citation:

Examine the Nature of the Citation


While some citations result in a mandatory court appearance, other violations in a lower degree may strictly require a fine in the event that an individual does not wish to contest the police citation.

Understand Your Rights


As an American citizen – or legal resident – an individual has the option of contesting a charge in regards to violation cited through police citation

The Satisfaction of the Citation


An individual must pay the required fee and/or appear in court on the date presented on the citation; the failure to do so can result in the issue of a warrant, as well as additional penalties and fines.