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Tag: police

Witnesses Offer Differing Account of Border Patrol Chase That Ended with 10 Dead in El Paso

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Some witnesses are contradicting Border Patrol’s claims that its agents stopped chasing a speeding vehicle that crashed and killed seven occupants in downtown El Paso on June 25.

Border Patrol officials said agents called off the pursuit because of the dangerous speed.

But witnesses told The Dallas Morning News that agents were still chasing the 2019 Chevrolet Cruze when it crashed into a parked trailer at 2:15 a.m. Two security guards said they saw the Border Patrol vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed with its headlights on and no sirens.

El Paso police are investigating.

“Was there a chase before the crash? Yes. Did it cause the crash? I don’t know,” Police spokesman Robert Gomez said.

At the time of the crash, 10 people were inside the car. Three were injured and remain in the hospital.

Authorities said the car was involved in human smuggling.

“All preliminary information collected thus far indicates that it was indeed a human smuggling event,” Chief Patrol Agent of the El Paso Sector Gloria Chavez said in a statement.

Ex-Secret Service Agent Credited with Saving President Reagan’s Life Plans to Retire from Law Enforcement

Former Secret Service Agent Timothy McCarthy, via Orland PD.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

Former Secret Service Agent Timothy McCarthy, who was shot in the chest while protecting President Reagan during an assassination attempt in 1981, is retiring from law enforcement.

The 71-year-old said he decided recently to retire from the Orland Park Police Department in Illinois, where he has served as police chief for 26 years and earned Chief of Police of the Year from the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police in 2016, The Chicago Tribune reports.

McCarthy, who has been the police chief since 1994, was credited with saving Reagan’s life while serving on the president’s Secret Service detail on March 30, 1981. Reagan, McCarthy and two others were shot by John Hinkley Jr.

McCarthy said he plans to retire on Aug. 1 to spend more time with his wife, three children and seven grandchildren.

“This has been absolutely a great run,” the 71-year-old McCarthy said. “Time catches up to you. Sometimes you have to turn to family, and it’s time.”

Harvey Goldstein: A Reimagined Police Force Must Be A Win/Win To Make A Difference

The author is an organizational development consultant, psychologist, trainer, and speaker for public safety, non-profit, and private sector entities.

By Harvey Goldstein

George Floyd.

The lurid almost macabre murder of George Floyd will not easily dim from our minds eye. Our nation cannot and should not turn away from transfixed horror and moral revulsion at indifference in taking a life. This and a string of recent incidents has raised the heat from a simmering stew of social injustices to a boiling caldron of suppressed and unattended grievances. Against a backdrop of rising hate crime, the broad coalition of protesters have unleashed a reservoir of ill will toward police as a lightning rod for institutional distrust and disgust. In a civil society, innocent loss of life is always tragic and matters. The broad-based firestorm of protest springs from a blatant visual that confirmed the worst fears of all peoples. This betrayal of “legitimacy “by four police officers has ignited the most negative portrait of police service. Acts of seeming retribution and displaced anger at police leaves us all at a crossroads.

Gandhi suggested that “we must be the change we want to see in the world.” The public outrage at malign police intent ought not be ascribed to the entire police profession with a broad brush. To do so resonates with the same venal tone as the racism that is being railed against. What is certain is that the explanation of “a few bad apples “will no longer quell long standing, high profile grievances about unequal treatment of minorities.

The Issues Are Not Just Black And White

Harvey Goldstein (Linkedin photo)

In the role of a civilian police psychologist for four decades I bear witness that the vast majority of the law enforcement community is comprised of professional, decent, incredibly giving, kind, brave, helpful and compassionate people. Most are repulsed by a policeman totally bereft of the humanity that so many labor daily to protect. To demonize them would be a further travesty of justice. If you ask a police officer if they are racist, they are likely to say that there isn’t a racist bone in their body. Past studies on the police population suggest having spontaneous negative biases doesn’t necessarily result in discrimination. I believe that there are biased automatic precursors to behavior that sometimes result in outright racism and sometimes not. Regulating the underlying catalyst for aggressive escalation is what needs to be targeted in training scenarios and assessments.

The outcry for “defunding “police springs from raw and earnest anger but portends no real viable alternative. Defunding smacks of self-defeating naivete. It can only hurt the law-abiding people in communities when you don’t have good cops to respond to crime.

Throwing the baby out with the bathwater is not the solution. However, the bathwater needs refreshing, and the tub does need a sound scrubbing. A wider lens reveals another side to the story.

When considering “police reform” will that include the “oversight” institutions that have failed us mightily, leaving law enforcement without clarity, more defined limits or corrective guidance? Instead, the “parental” institutions have provided wide berth and cover for extreme behaviors with scant accountability.

“Police officers don’t face justice more often for a variety of reasons — from powerful police unions to the blue wall of silence to cowardly prosecutors to reluctant juries. But it is the Supreme Court that has enabled a culture of violence and abuse by eviscerating a vital civil rights law to provide police officers what, in practice, is nearly limitless immunity from prosecution for actions taken while on the job. The badge has become a get-out-of-jail-free card in far too many instances.”

5/29/20, How the Supreme Court Lets Cops Get Away With Murder, New York Times

Unions who are effective defenders of salary and work conditions do harm to their profession when they defend any and all police actions as righteous. These messages all give oxygen to more extreme tactics towards those deemed non-compliant. If there is one thing you can count on in this life it is that a behavior reinforced is more likely to reoccur.

Read more »

White Supremacist, Racist Groups Pose Greatest Threat of Protest-Related Violence, Intelligence Briefing Warns

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

White supremacists and other domestic racist groups pose the greatest threat of protest-related violence, a new federal intelligence bulletins warns.

The document, issued by the FBI, Homeland Security and National Counterterrorism Center, undermines President Trump’s rhetoric that antifa and anarchists groups are the primary threats, ABC News reports.

“Based upon current information, we assess the greatest threat of lethal violence continues to emanate from lone offenders with racially or ethnically motivated violent extremist ideologies and [domestic violent extremists] with personalized ideologies,” the bulletin states.

The bulletin, titled “Domestic Violent Extremists Could Exploit Current Events to Incite or Justify Attacks on Law Enforcement or Civilians Engaged in First Amendment-Protected Activities,” was sent to law enforcement across the country.

The bulletin asserts that would-be domestic terrorists “including militia extremists and [groups] who advocate a belief in the superiority of the white race have sought to bring about a second civil war, often referred to as a ‘Boogaloo’ by intentionally instigating violence at First Amendment-protected activities. Racially charged events, coupled with the accompanying widespread media attention, and the rapid dissemination of violent online rhetoric by [extremists], are likely to remain contributing factors to potentially ideologically motivated violence.”

Man Charged with Planting Explosives Next to Downtown Pittsburgh Building

Matthew Michanowicz

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A 52-year-old man has been charged on allegations he planted explosives next to a building in downtown Pittsburgh.

ATF agents and local police searched the home of Matthew Michanowicz, who has been charged with possessing weapons of mass destruction and possession of explosive or incendiary materials or devices.

Authorities say the man was caught on surveillance footage getting off his bike and planting a backpack next to PNC Plaza.

On Monday, authorities investigated a report of a suspicious package and found multiple explosives inside.

Police say Michanowicz admitted he was downtown but denied planing the backpack. Photos and videos show otherwise, authorities said.

FBI Investigating Fatal Police Shooting of Black Woman at Her Louisville Home

Breonna Taylor

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The FBI has opened an investigation into the fatal police shooting of a 26-year-old woman at her home during a narcotics probe at her Louisville, Ky., home in March.

“The FBI will collect all available facts and evidence and will ensure that the investigation is conducted in a fair, thorough and impartial manner,” the FBI Louisville Field Office said in a statement. “As this is an ongoing investigation, we are not able to comment further at this time.”

Three white police officers were executing a search warrant at the home of Breonna Taylor, who is black and was a certified EMT, when she was shot. Police found no drugs, according to The Louisville Courier-Journal.

According to police, the officers forced their way into Taylor’s home after repeatedly knocking and announcing their presence. Taylor’s boyfriend opened fire, shooting an officer in the leg, police said.

Police were investigating two men who were suspected of selling drugs out of a house more than 10 miles form Taylor’s apartment. But police received a search warrant to enter Taylor’s home because a detective said one of the suspect’s received a package at Taylor’s home.

Taylor’s mother sued the police department and the three officers, accusing them of wrongfully causing her daughter’s death.

The FBI said its investigation into the shooting is “independent” of the local probe.

Off-Duty Secret Service Agent Shot Charging Dog in Brooklyn

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

An off-duty Secret Service agent fatally shot a dog that he says charged him in Brooklyn shortly before 10 p.m. Monday.

The New York Police Department is investigating.

“An off duty Secret Service employee was involved in the shooting of an unleashed dog in Brooklyn, NY this evening. As this is an ongoing NYPD investigation, the Secret Service will not have further comment,” the NYPD told The Daily Beast.

The dog appeared to be about 35 pounds, and its body was covered in a white sheet with what appeared to be a leash.

Racist, Former New Jersey Police Chief Found Guilty of Lying to FBI

Bordentown Township Police Chief Frank Nucera.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A racist, former New Jersey police chief was found guilty Wednesday of lying to the FBI after he allegedly assaulted a handcuffed black teenager at a hotel and denied playing a role in the arrest.

The jury, however, remained deadlocked on federal civil rights and hate crime charges and were asked to continue deliberating.

Former Bordentown Township Police Chief Frank Nucera, 62, was the first law enforcement officer charged with a federal hate crime in at least a decade.

Nucera’s fellow officers secretly recorded him dozens of times using racial slurs. He said Donald Trump, who was a presidential candidate at the time, was the “last hope for white people.” He compared black people to ISIS and animals, said they should “stay the fuck out of Bordentown” because they had “no value,” and even suggested a firing squad should kill black people.

Nucera could be sentenced to up to five years when he is sentenced Feb. 6 for lying to the FBI.

The jury is still deliberating on two counts of hate-crime assault and deprivation of civil rights, The Trentonian reports.  Each of those charges carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

“We’re gonna wait and see what happens tomorrow,” defense attorney Rocco Cipparone Jr. said outside the courtroom. “Of the three counts, this is the lesser of three evils. That doesn’t mean I’m happy with it. But it is what it is and I have to accept it at this point.”

Fellow officers said Nucera slammed a handcuffed black teenager’s head into a door jam after he was falsely accused of swimming in a hotel pool without paying for a room.

Nucera insisted to FBI agents that he was not involved in the arrest.