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Tag: Murder

Golden State Killer Pleads Guilty to String of Murders, Kidappings

FBI wanted poster.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Former police officer Joseph James DeAngelo Jr. affirmed he is the Golden State Killer by pleading guilty Monday to 13 counts of first-degree murder and 13 counts of kidnapping.

The 74-year-old, who sat in a wheel chair and wore an orange jump suit and plastic face shield, admitted he committed a string of murders in the 1970s and ’80s that terrorized California and frustrated law enforcement.

“Mr. DeAngelo is acknowledging his guilt for the heinous crimes he has committed,” Contra Costa County District Attorney Diana Becton said at the court hearing, NPR reports. “There is really nothing that could give full justice because he has committed horrendous acts and murder up and down the state of California. But at least we can now begin the process — after decades — to bring some closure to families.”

In June 2016, the FBI renewed its manhunt for the elusive killer during a news conference, where they announced a $50,000 reward. Less than two years later, DeAngelo was arrested, based on forensic genetic genealogy.

“The scope of Joseph DeAngelo’s crimes is simply staggering,” Sacramento County Prosecutor Thien Ho said. “Each time he escaped, slipping away silently into the night.”

Family members of some of the victims spoke.

Disgraced Ex-FBI Agent John Connolly Wants Released from Jail Because of Coronavirus

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Former FBI Agent John Connolly, who is serving a 40-year prison sentence for assisting notorious gangster “Whitey” Bulger, is asking to be freed from prison because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The 79-year-old “suffers from multiple severe medical conditions, poses no threat to the public safety, and seeks release to protect him from contracting the novel coronavirus,” his attorneys wrote to a Florida judge this week, The Miami Herald reports.

His lawyers say Connolly would live with his brother in Florida and serve the remainder of his sentence on home confinement.

While working for the FBI’s Boston Field Office in the 1970s, Connolly recruited Bulger as an informant. Connolly was convicted of second-degree murder for participating in a plot to kill a Florida businessman in 1982 at the urging of Bulger.

The Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office does not want Connolly to be released.

“He deserves to remain behind bars,” State Attorney Katherine Fernández Rundle told The Miami Herald. “He was an FBI agent who used his badge to give information that led to the death of an informant. It’s reprehensible.”

The former agent is asking that he be allowed to serve the remainder of his sentence on home confinement.

Appeals Court Upholds Murder Convictions in Death of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry

Slain Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Two men convicted in the 2010 murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry lost their appeal in which they claimed they were illegally extradited.

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the murder convictions of Ivan Soto-Barraza and Jesus Lionel Sanchez-Meza, who are serving life sentences, saying their extraditions were lawful, The Associated Press reports.

Terry was fatally shot during a firefight with a seven-men “rip crew” that robbed smugglers crossing the Arizona-Mexico border.

Terry’s death revealed the botched “Fast and Furious” operation in which federal agents permitted criminals to buy firearms so they could be tracked to criminal organizations.

Five other men have been indicted in connection with Terry’s murder.

Man Sentenced to Life for 2010 Murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry

Slain Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A sixth man convicted for his role in the 2010 murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was sentenced Wednesday to life in prison.

Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes, a Mexican gang member, was convicted by a jury in February of nine criminal counts, including first- and second-degree murder.

The case led to the discovery of the Fast and Furious scandal.

Terry was fatally shot during a firefight with a seven-men “rip crew” that robbed smugglers crossing the Arizona-Mexico border.

“A life sentence for Agent Terry’s murder cannot eliminate his family’s suffering. But it is our hope that this sentence brings some degree of comfort to Agent Terry’s family in knowing that the individuals responsible for his murder will be held accountable,” said Robert Brewer, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of California, according to AZCentral.com.

Roy Villareal, the chief patrol officer for Border Patrol’s Tucson Sector, applauded the sentencing.

“Today brings us one step closer to justice for Agent Brian Terry’s murder,” Villareal said. “The sentencing brings a painful time closer to an end and serves as a reminder of the grave dangers our agents face in their selfless commitment to the safety of their communities and country.”

CBP Specialist Charged with Murdering Wife, Who Also Worked at Agency

Dudley Bernard

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A Customs and Border Protection officer has been charged with murder after police say he shot his wife, also a CBP employee, at their Texas home on Thanksgiving night.

Dudley Bernard, 40, was arrested in his front yard after police responded to reports of gunshots at the League City house just after 11 p.m.

Police said Chauntelle Bernard, 42, was found dead at the front door of the home.

Dudley Bernard was an agriculture specialist who oversaw the Houston Seaport environment. Chauntelle Bernard was a supervisor CBP officer in Houston, according to a CBP statement.

“No words can express the sense of loss SCBPO Bernard’s death brings to her colleagues and friends in CBP,” a CBP spokesperson said.

Husband of Forensic FBI Photographer Called Person of Interest in Wife’s Death

Kathleen Miller, via Facebook.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The husband of a forensic FBI photographer from Alabama is a person of interest in the drowning death of his wife.

Authorities found 60-year-old Kathleen Miller, of Huntsville, Ala., in a shallow creek in the Nantahala National Forest in North Carolina on Oct. 7.

Gregory Miller called 911 and calmly reported his wife, who had no health issues, had fallen in the creek.

“I tried to call for help. I need help,” the husband said in a 911 call obtained by WAAY-TV. “My wife has fallen in the water, and I couldn’t get her out. … I wish I could be of more help.”

The couple were camping at the park when Gregory Miller said his wife disappeared after saying she wanted to check out Santeetlah Creek. Her husband said he later discovered her body face down in the creek.

Several law enforcement agencies are investigating the case.

CBP Agent Accused of Fatally Shooting Husband in Florida

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A Customs and Border Protection agent Palm Beach County, Fla., has been arrested in the fatal shooting of her husband at the couple’s home.

Marcia Thompson, 39, was on her way to work when authorities allege she shot her 52-year-old husband at least six times, the Palm Beach Post reports.

According to Palm Beach County sherrif’s deputies, Thompson admitted she pulled the trigger on her duty weapon, but said her husband was threatening to kill her.

“I do not believe that Terry Thompson posed such a threat that deadly force was necessary,” Detective Jeremy Gelfand wrote in a court filing.

Thompson is being held in the Palm Beach County Jail without bond.

FBI: California Man Sought Chemical Weapon on Dark Web to Murder His Wife

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Sanford Faison knew he’d be a prime suspect if he killed his wife, so he turned to the Dark Web for an unconventional way to end her life, according to the FBI.

Agents said the 41-year-old Oakland, Calif., man began searching online for an extremely lethal chemical weapon, which the FBI did not identify, The Mercury News reports.

Faison, a PayPal employee who wanted custody of his two children, knew he’d be the main suspect “if she so much slipped on a banana peel,” according to a recently unsealed criminal complaint filed in federal court.

“I feel that [chemical #1] poisoning would reduce my culpability by delaying a final/accurate diagnosis and undermine any investigation,” he allegedly wrote.

An FBI agent, posing as a prospective seller of the chemical weapon, sent Faison the package, which contained surveillance equipment. As soon as he opened the package, FBI agents arrested him.

While awaiting trial, Faison is in federal custody.