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Archive for January, 2013

Pistol Found at Mexican Murder Scene Tied to ATF Agent

 
Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Another firearm traced to the botched gun-running investigation Operation Fast and Furious has turned up at a shooting, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports

The Tribune wrote today that a semi-automatic pistol found at a bloody scene where five people, including a Mexican beauty queen, were killed in Sinaloa in November was tracked back to ATF Agent George Gillett Jr., who oversaw the gun-running probe.

The Tribune learned of the incident in a Dec. 21 letter obtained from the Justice Department.

Federal authorities have been criticized for mishandling Operation Fast and Furious and losing track of guns.

 

In an Asian Restaurant Bathroom, Aide Delivered $10,000 Payoff to Detroit Mayor

Ex-Mayor Kilpatrick with ex-friend Derrick Miller (inset)

By Allan Lengel
Deadline Detroit

DETROIT — On Thursday, Derrick Miller finally talked about the much anticipated payoff in the bathroom — something out of an episdoe of “The Sopranos.”

Miller, a former close friend who was in Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick’s administration, testified at Kilpatrick’s federal trial that the then-mayor asked him to get cash for him from the partners of Asian Village, the now-defunct restaurant venture on the Detroit River.

“Can you get it from your Asian Village guys?” Miller says Kilpatrick asked.

Miller said he got $10,000 and met Kilpatrick in a bathroom at Asian Village. He did not specify a date, but it was believed to be around 2007.

“I gave him the money,” Miller said.

When Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Chutkow asked.

“What did he say?” Chutkow asked.

To read more click here.

httpv://youtu.be/EJJ64fgubTM

 

American Football Coaches Asscociation Gives FBI’s Robert Mueller Top Award

Grant Teaff (left), executive director of the American Football Coaches Associaton, presented the Tuss McLaughry Award to Director Mueller.

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III on Tuesday night received the Tuss McLaughry Award from the American Football Coaches Association in Nashville.

The award, established in 1964, is the organization’s highest honor and is presented to distinguished Americans in recognition of outstanding service to others.

“Coaches are parental figures,” Mueller said during the ceremony according to information posted on the FBI website.

“They reinforce the importance of hard work and dedication; of selflessness and fair play; and of character, humility, and leadership.”

“Everyone remembers their favorite coach and the lessons they learned,” Mueller said. “You as coaches contribute to a legacy of sportsmanship and solidarity…of discipline and dedication…of toughness in the face of adversity. That lasting impact is every coach’s legacy.”

Justice Department: One in Four Women in Jail Have Serious Mental Health Issues

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Justice Department study has found that one in four women in jail have serious mental illnesses.

The Justice Department announced the findings Wednesday in what is certain to spark more debates about access to mental health care in prison.

The study also found that half of incarcerated women had received treatment for mental health or substance abuse disorders.

“The overrepresentation of women with mental illness in jails has tragic consequences for children and families. It is important that the field of criminal justice understands how mental illness, trauma, and other disorders are related to women becoming involved in the criminal justice system,” said BJA Director Denise E. O’Donnell. “The information from this study can help us develop strategies to address and respond to these issues.”

STORIES OF OTHER INTEREST


Miami Cops Accused of Providing Protection to Gambling Ring

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

At least nine Miami police officers are the target of an FBI investigation into a scheme to protect an illegal sports-betting operation, the Miami Herald reports.

The officers are accused of protecting a Liberty City gambling ring that operated out of a barber shop.

The Miami Herald wrote that six of the officers have resigned or been suspended as part of the probe.

Arrests are expected by the end of the month.

According to the Miami Herald, one gambler saw cops so frequently that he believed the police department was running the shop.

FBI Investigates Cyber Attacks Targeting Police Accused of Mishandling Rape Case

Part of Threatening Letter/fbi photo

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Local police in Ohio who are accused of mishandling a rape case involving high school football players have been bombarded with cyber attacks, the Associated Press reports.

Now the FBI is trying to determine who posted a death threat to the local sheriff on Facebook and an email that shut down the computer of the Steubenville Police Department.

As a precaution, the police and sheriff’s departments shut down their websites after business hours, the AP wrote.

“The police who protect them must be executed,” the Facebook post said, with “them” referring to students at Steubenville High School, the AP wrote.

“This has got to be some crackpot sick individual out there who would put this stuff out there,” Jefferson County Sheriff Fred Abdalla said Wednesday.

Column: Simply Put, the Death Penalty Cost Too Much

Ross Parker was chief of the criminal division in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit for 8 years and worked as an AUSA for 28 in that office. He is the author of the book “Carving Out the Rule of Law: The History of the United States Attorney’s Office in Eastern Michigan 1815–2008″.
 
Second of a two part series.

Ross Parker

 
 
 
By Ross Parker
ticklethewire.com

Stan Garnett, the District Attorney in Boulder, recently told the people of Colorado that, although he was not morally or philosophically opposed to the death penalty, he had simply concluded that it was too expensive, time consuming, and subject to random application. As reported in Colorado’s Daily Camera, he said that he found it to be impractical and of limited law enforcement relevance.

A recent death verdict had cost the state $18 million to fund its appeals. The budget of the county prosecutor’s office is $4.6 million a year, and he had 1,900 other felonies to prosecute. Boulder County has not executed anyone in the 140 years since statehood.

Damon Thibodeaux had confessed after a nine-hour interrogation to raping and killing his 14-year old cousin. He later recanted the confession but was convicted and sentenced to death in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. He spent 15 years on Death Row in Angola Prison. In September of this year, after a five-year investigation in which the District Attorney cooperated fully, including DNA evidence, his conviction was set aside and he was released a free man. Capital defense experts claim that 140 other Death Row prisoners have been exonerated since 1973, 18 by DNA.

These two factors—financial burden and fear of executing an innocent person—are defining the terms of the current debate on the death penalty. Few such discussions seriously mention factors formerly considered crucial—morality, religion, deterrence, racial discrimination, except in passing. Nor do other seemingly important matters such as random unfairness, mental illness of offenders, logistical problems with the humane administration of lethal injection drugs, seem to affect the great majority of the populace or political decision makers very much.

Whatever the nature of the debate, the trend is clear. Five states in the last five years have ended capital punishment. Twenty-nine states have not conducted an execution in over five years, twenty-three in over ten years. There were 224 death sentences and 85 executions in 1985 compared to 78 death sentences and 43 executions in 2012.

Thirty-three states still have the death penalty but few use it. Three-fourths of the executions in the U.S. in 2012 took place in just four states: Texas, Oklahoma, Mississippi, and Arizona.

Even a conservative Supreme Court has whittled away at the scope of permissible candidates for the death penalty by eliminating broad categories: Cohen-1977 (rape not resulting in death); Emmund-1982 (minor participants who do not kill or attempt to kill); Ford-1986 (insane persons); Thompson-1988 (juveniles 15 and under at the time of the crime); Atkins-2002 (mentally retarded); Roper-2005 (under 18 at the time of the crime); Kennedy-2008 (victim’s life is not taken).

Read more »

Ex-FBI Agent Tapped to Help Run North Carolina Department of Public Safety

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Former FBI Agent Frank Perry was named as interim chief operating officer of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety, the News and Observer reports.

The News and Observer wrote that Perry gained popularity by leading the FBI’s Raleigh office in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 terrorists attacks.

Perry will replace former COO and Chief Deputy Secretary Mikael Gross, who was dismissed Monday.

Perruy, who holds a doctorate in ethics and political philosophy, will oversee day-to-day operations for the Department of Public Safety, the News and Observer reported.