Teen Girl Hospitalized After Curfew Violation Spins Out of Control

 

Clairton, Pennsylvania 

Created on July 23, 2014

Merceedez Wright describes police force used for curfew violation

A 17-year-old girl is in the hospital after an encounter with police that started with violating the city's curfew ordinance by a few minutes. Merceedez Wright has injuries to her neck, trachea, and esophagus that were caused by the actions of officers as the situation spun out of control and ended with her being slammed to the ground several times. Wright does not deny being out past curfew or running from police, but argues that her actions were out of fear and not the intention to break the law. The Clairton Police have not given a statement as to why this level of force was used in response to a curfew violation.  

 

Breaking Curfew and Fleeing The Police

Merceedes Wright saying that she ran from police because was afraidMerceedez Wright was leaving a local ice cream shop with friends when first approached by a Clairton Police Officer. But after he left, one of the girls realized they forgot their bag and phone. As they went back to retrieve their items, the officer jumped out of his car and started running towards the girls. It was at this point that Wright said she became afraid and ran away. 

The officer chased Wright, and spun her around, bringing her to the ground. A second officer is not far behind, and joins in as Wright is on the ground. The camera view is blocked by a car, but the officer spend two minutes making physical contact with the young girl. Several of Wrights fellow curfew breakers witnessed the incident and said that the police were kicking her, pulling her hair, and beating her up. Wright also said that the police were pulling her hair and smashed her face into the ground with their legs and feet.

The officers finally pulled the girl to her feet, but were unable to handle the small girl. One of her arms broke free and they again took her to the ground. Wright, still afraid, said that she acted in defense of herself and not with the intention of resisting arrest. A third officer joined in after she was again brought to her feet, this officer slammed her violently to the ground. 

Bryon Clifford describing the attack on Merceedez Wright by police Police officials often claim that officers only have a second to make a decision. In this situation, a young teen girl had only a second to make a decision when she saw a grown man running towards her over the violation of a city curfew. They are trained officers and she is just an untrained teenage girl. Is her decision to flee outweighed by their decision to use this level of force? 

 

Use of Force

Destiny Hester describing the attack on Merceedez Wright by police Law Enforcement Officials are only authorized to use the amount of force necessary. In order to determine that this is the amount of force that was necessary we must believe that initially two officers were unable to detain a small 17-year-old girl without using the type of force that leads to hospitalization. It is even more unlike to be necessary when a third officer joins the effort. Keep in mind, this was not for a violent crime and at no time did she pose any threat to the officers. 

Either these officers are grossly incompetent, or they are only being trained on one method of subduing a suspect.  Yes she fled, and yes she resisted. But the officers are not authorized to use force in order to punish someone for breaking the law. The force must be necessary in order to be justified. Image if this same teenage girl was seen by her parents being out past their curfew. They would be facing child abuse charges if they violently threw her to the ground and caused this level of injury.

 

Scandals That May Be of Interest

Cop kicks handcuffed 13-year-old-off-his-feet Bully Cop Trips and Pushes High School Girls As They Celebrate Their Teams Championship Tucson Cop Blindsides Innocent Girl, sending her into a bench Cop smashes 13-year-old in the face with a cell phone

 

Players

Merceedez Wright

  • 17-year-old girl (1)
  • Cheerleader and Lifeguard (1)
  • Beaten and hospitalized by police after a 'curfew violation' (1)  

Facts

The Incident

  • Merceedez Wright and some friends left the Soft Serve and Dee-Lites ice cream shop (1)
  • They left a bag and a phone behind (1)
  • They were stopped by police for being out after curfew and given a warning (1)
  • They attempted to go back and retrieve their items (1)
  • An officer allegedly jumped out of his car and started running towards the teenage girls (1)
  • Wright said she was scared when she saw the officer running towards her, and her initial reaction was to run (1)
  • An unidentified officer chased her spun her around, and took her to the ground (1)
  • Wright said she had her face smashed into the ground by the legs and feet of the officers (1)
  • Two officers stood the girl up, and there was a second struggle, where she appeared to get an arm free (1)
  • She was again taken to the ground, one officer is seen using his knee to pin her to the ground (1)
  • When she was back on her feet, another officer slams her to the ground (1)

Witnesses

  • Wrights friends witnessed the use of force (1)

Surveillance Cameras

  • A camera across the street caught some of the incident (1)
  • The officer can be seen spinning her around and throwing her to the ground (1)
  • A car is blocking the view of the next two minutes (1)
  • Police then stand the young girl up (1)
  • The officers again take her to the ground (1)
  • Wright claims she was attempting to protect herself from the officers (1)

Injuries to Merceedez Wright

  • Injuries to her trachea, esophagus and neck (1)
  • Cuts and bruises (1)

Curfew 

  • Curfew is 10 p.m. in Clairton, Pa. (1) 

Timeline

7/22/14 - Merceedez Wright was beaten by police after fleeing during an alleged curfew violation (1) 

Quotes

 "I didn't think cops would do that to me because I'm a girl. And I didn't have anything on me. I was just trying to walk away from the situation." - Merceedez Wright (1)


"I was terrified. I thought I was going to be getting beaten up for hours." - Merceedez Wright (1)


"They both just tackled me to the ground and smashed my face into the ground with their feet and their legs. Then they started pulling my hair and pushing me and stuff, and I was screaming real loud." - Merceedez Wright (1)


"(The officer) ran full force at her and she ran from him." - Destiny Hester (1)


"They pounced on her, then started kicking her and pulling her hair." - Destiny Hester (1)


"I hear her screaming, I run over there and she's on the ground. They're over there beating her up, kicking her, pulling her hair." - Bryon Clifford (1)


"She's a cheerleader, she's a lifeguard at the Clairton pool, she was just on prom court." - Audelia Amoah, mother of Merceedez Wright (1) 


"I was scared because of how he got out of the car. He didn't just walk out, he jumped out of the car and started chasing me, so my first instinct was to run." - Merceedez Wright (1)

Cop Uses Prohibited Choke Hold In Man's Death

 

Created on July 21, 2014

New York City 

Eric Garner telling NYPD officers he can not breathNYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo was caught on video holding Eric Garner in a prohibited choke hold while he gasped for air, saying six times that he could not breath. Justin Damico and four other unidentified officers took part in the incident that led to the death of the 43-year-old father of six. Garner was unarmed and at no time appeared to be a threat to the safety of the officers, but this did not prevent them from using deadly force on the 400 pound man. Witnesses have said that the incident began when Garner broke up a fight between three other men, who fled the scene before police arrived, but the police claim they observed Garner selling a cigarette to a man, without giving the government a piece of the action.

 

Use of Deadly Force on Eric Garner

Eric Garner was a large man and clearly upset during the interaction with police. He claimed that he had done nothing wrong and that they were harassing them. His voice was loud and he was moving his hands while he talked. But, at no time did he appear to pose a threat to the plain clothes officers that were questioning him about the alleged sale of a cigarette. During the conversation, he accused the police of harassing him, but at no time did his language indicate that he meant to do harm to any of the officers. He respectfully referred to them as officer, and even said "please" before saying "don't touch me."

Ramsey Orta explaining the attack on Eric Garner from the NYPDOfficer Pantaleo jumped on Garner and placed in a choke hold. This is a tactic that has been known to lead to death and is considered deadly force. Law Enforcement Officials are only authorized to use deadly force when there is reason to believe the person poses a threat of death or serious bodily injury to them or civilians. No such threat could be said to have reasonably existed in the incident. The department might have been able to make a case for resisting arrest, but that alone does not authorize the use of deadly force. 

Officials from the NYPD have indicated that Garner died from a heart attack. Being placed in a choke hold will directly affect the blood flow, which can lead to a heart attack when a person has blockage. It is unreasonable to assume that the actions of this officer did not directly cause Garner to have a heart attack. Many people have heart attacks and survive, but this is only possible when there is swift medical attention. As Garner laid unconscious, the officer went through his pockets instead of performing the first aid that could have saved his life. One video shows he laying there for seven minutes before finally receiving some kind of medical treatment. 

 

Prior ARRESTS of Garner

Esaw Garner claiming the police harassed her husbandThe NYPD has made sure to let the media know that Daniel Pantaleo has been arrest 30 times and some were for selling illegal cigarettes. However, they fail to mention if any of those arrests have actually led to convictions. In America we are innocent until proven guilty, if he was never found guilty than the arrests do not indicate that he was a repeat offender. Instead, the arrests help to explain the frustration of Eric Garner. He claimed that he has been harassed by the police in the past. It is questionable if he was arrested 30 times without being convicted. The police should have evidence of a crime before making an arrest.

During the video Eric Garner asks the officer who he is being accused of selling a cigarette to. The officer looks around and eventually indicates that it was a person off to his right that was wearing a red shirt. There has been no indication that the man in the red shirt was arrested or questioned by police. If this crime took place, then both men broke the law by taking part in the transaction. It is unclear why the officers were only interested in Garner and not the other alleged law breaker.

While the department was quick to release the arrest record of Garner, they have not released information related to how many times Officer Pantaleo has been the subject of an internal affairs investigation or disciplined for wrongdoing in the department. If the arrest record of Garner is relevant, then the record of Officer Pantaleo is also relevant. If there is no privacy for a private citizen, then there should be none for a public servant. 

 

Selling an Illegal Cigarette vs. Illegal Use of Deadly Force

Valencia Griffin quote about the death of Eric Garner at the hands of the NYPDGarner was not accused of a violent crime or even one that directly victimizes another citizen. He was being accused of selling a loose cigarette without paying or charging tax to the price of the cigarette. The NYPD used deadly force against a man in order to serve and protect government revenue. 

A citizen can only use deadly force in self defense and must be able to support the claim with evidence that their life was threatened. When such force is used by a citizen without justification of defending them self or a loved one, and it causes the death of the victim, it is called murder. The officer used the same level of force and was clearly not defending himself or anyone else. This unconstitutional use of force led to the death of an American citizen. 

The crime allegedly committed by Garner does not even compare to the crime committed against him. His life was taken by a person that swore to serve and protect the people, not government revenue. It is unclear if any officer investigated the fight that took place before the incident, but there were five officers on scene and ready to use force when there is a threat against government revenue. Five officers paid by the taxpayers and authorized by the people to use force utilize their time by hunting down the man that allegedly sold a cigarette without giving the government their cut.

 

Duck, Cover, and Divert Attention

NYPD Officials have announced that both Officer Daniel Pantaleo and Officer Justin Damico have been placed on desk duty during the investigation. Pantaleo also had to turn in badge and gun. This action only came after a public outcry that grew after a Harlem rally. The NYPD would like us to believe that they are most interested in making sure there is a full investigation, but at the same time they have been releasing information to the press that is intended to shed a bad light on the victim of this illegal use of deadly force. Due to the timing, this appears to be a reaction to the outrage and not the officer breaking procedure and using unnecessary force. 

Patrick Lynch, president of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association, spoke in defense of Officer Pantaleo. He claimed that placing the officer on desk duty was just a "knee-jerk reaction" and is pre-judging the Officer. It appears that the police union believes that the officer that was caught on tape using a tactic that is both against policy and an unauthorized use of deadly force should be given the benefit of the doubt that he failed to extend to Garner. Lynch went on to claim that giving officers the "benefit of doubt" is a social contract that we are failing to uphold. Like most statements from police unions, it claims that these trained officers have such a "difficult and complex" job which should allow us to turn a blind eye when they murder citizens on the street. However, is it the job or the laws that are complex and how can we hold citizens responsible for the laws that are too complex for trained Law Enforcement Officers to comprehend? 

The actual diversion of attention was caused by the same rally that held to bring the incident into the public spotlight. Al Sharpton spoke at the Harlem Rally, and appeared to change the incident from being police brutality to one of race. I have seen no indications that race was a factor in this incident. Garner was a black man and Officer Pantaleo is a white man. If this is the only indication that race was a factor, then we are saying that based on the races of the men involved we have determined that the officer target Garner based on his race. In other words, we will be targeting Officer Pantaleo based on his race to say that he was targeting Garner based on Garner's race.

Sharpton said, "We are the only ones in the social setup that has to deal with fear of cops and robbers.” Tell this to the family of Baby "Bou Bou", after police threw a tactical grenade into his crib. There was no rally for Christine Chippewa when two Daytona Beach Police Officers turned off their body camera's and shoved a flashlight down her throat, knocking out her teeth.  Sharpton must have missed the story about a Tuscon cop blindsiding a young girl and sending her into a bench, the 17-year-old boy that was shot dead for opening his door with a Wii Remote in his hand, the shooting death of Keith Vidal, and the savage beating death of Kelly Thomas.

There are many in the social setup that need to fear the cops and the abuse of the power given to them by the people. Making this about race might help stir people up, but it allows people to believe that this is only happening to one group of people in the 'social setup'. While some cases of Police Brutality are about race, all are about power and control. In the end, the police want the people to do as they are told without question, even when the orders are not constitutional. This is not a police force controlled by the people, but instead the people controlled by a police state. Law Enforcement Officials will continue to break the very laws they swore to protect if they are not held accountable for their intentional illegal acts. They should be held to the same standard regardless of their skin color and the skin color of the victim. 

 

SCANDALS THAT MAY BE OF INTEREST

Cops beat war vet to death, after routine traffic stop  Police beat innocent father to death Death by bean bag for 95-year-old Veteran Cops Beat Homeless Man To Death

 

Players

Officer Daniel Pantaleo

  • NYPD Officer for 8 years (1)
  • Placed on desk duty and stripped of his gun and badge during the investigation (1) 

Officer Justin Damico

  • NYPD Officer for 4 years (1)
  • Placed on desk duty during the investigation (1) 

Eric Garner

  • 43-year-old man (1)
  • Killed by Officer Daniel Pantaleo in Staten Island (1) 
  • Has six children and two grandchildren (1) 

Commissioner William Bratton

  • NYPD Commissioner
  • Called the tactic used by Officer Pantaleo a chokehold (1)
  • Announced that Officer Pantaleo and an unidentified officer were placed on desk duty during the investigation (1) 

Patrick Lynch

  • president of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association (1)
  • claims that placing Officer Pantaleo on desk duty was "unwarranted" (1) 

Esaw Garner

  • Wife of Eric Garner (3) 

Ramsey Orta

  • Filled the incident (2)
  • Gave the video to the Daily News (2) 

Facts

The Incident

  • Officer Daniel Pantaleo and three unidentified NYPD officer stopped Eric Garner for allegedly selling loose cigarettes (1)
  • Garner claimed to have done nothing wrong, and expressed frustration with being stopped, further claiming that the police continue to "mess with me". (1) 
  • Four NYPD officers bring Garner down (1)
  • Officer Pantaleo placed Garner in a chokehold while the other officers handcuffed him (1)
  • Garner is heard on the video gasping and is heard saying that he is unable to breathe six times (1)(3)
  • Officer Pantaleo pressed Garners face into the ground (2)
  • Officer demanded that Ramsey Orta, who was recording the incident, back up (2)
  • As Garner lay unconscious, police go through his pockets, but do not attempt to provide any type of first aid  

Alleged crimes of Eric Garner

  • Suspected of selling loose, untaxed cigarettes (1)
  • Accused of resisting arrest (1)
  • NYPD Officials claimed that Garner had several arrests, but did not clarify if any resulted in convictions (3)
  • The Garner family claims that he had no cigarettes on him or in his vehicle at the time of the incident (3) 

Use of Force

  • The video shows Officer Daniel Pantaleo using what is described by Commissioner William Bratton as a chokehold (1)
  • A chokehold is a tactic that is considered deadly force (1)
  • Chokeholds are prohibited by NYPD policy (1)
  • Officials claim they believe the death was due to a hart attack (1) 

The Police Union

  • Patrick Lynch, the president of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association spoke in Officer Pantaleo's defense (1) 

Investigation

  • Detective Howard is involved in the Internal Affairs investigation (3)
  • Esaw Garner claims Detective Howard told her that there is an investigation "Because there is wrongdoing." (3) 

Previous Lawsuits against Officer Pantaleo

  • Two plantiffs were awarded $15,000 after they were falsely arrested and forced to publicly strip by Officer Pantaleo (4)
  • A lawsuit was filed in February of 2014 alleging that two men were falsely arrested on trumped up charges (4) 

Timeline

7/20/14 - A rally was held on Staten Island near the scene of the incident (1)


7/19/14 - NYPD Announced that Officer Pantaleo and an unidentified officer were placed on desk duty during the investigation into the death of Eric Garner. Officer Pantaleo was also ordered to turn in his gun and badge during the investigation. (1)


7/19/14 - A rally took place in Harlem (1)


7/17/14 - Eric Garner was killed by NYPD Officers (3) 

Quotes

“I didn’t do nothing.” - Eric Garner, to NYPD Officers (2)


"I didn't sell anything." - Eric Garner, to NYPD Officers (2)  


“Every time you see me, you want to mess with me. I’m tired of it. It stops today." - Eric Garner, to NYPD Officers (1)


”Everybody standing there will tell you that I didn’t do nothing. I didn’t sell nothing. …I’m minding my business, officer. I’m minding my business. Please just leave me alone.” - Eric Garner, to NYPD Officers (2)


“I’m minding my business. Please just leave me alone.” - Eric Garner, to NYPD Officers (1)


“Don’t touch me, please." - Eric Garner, to NYPD Officers (3) 


“I can’t breathe! I can’t breathe!” - Eric Garner, to NYPD Officers (1)


“Completely unwarranted, knee-jerk reaction.” - Patrick Lynch, president of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association, in regards to Officer Pantaleo being placed on desk duty during the investigation (1) 


 “effectively pre-judges”  - Patrick Lynch, president of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association, in regards to Officer Pantaleo being placed on desk duty during the investigation (1)


“very benefit of a doubt that has long been part of the social contract that allows police officers to face the risks of this difficult and complex job.” - Patrick Lynch, president of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association, in regards to Officer Pantaleo being placed on desk duty during the investigation (1) 


“This is going to be a real test to see where policies are in the city now and whether the change that we feel occurred has occurred.” - Al Sharpton, during a Harlem Rally (1)  


“We are the only ones in the social setup that has to deal with fear of cops and robbers.” - Al Sharpton, during a Harlem Rally (1) 


“It was very troubling. I watched it the same way a family member would watch it, and it was very sad to watch.” - Mayor De Blasio, in regards to the video of Eric Garner's death (4) 


“Once again, police beating up on people." - Ramsey Orta (2) 


"All he did was break up a fight. And this is what happens for breaking up a fight. This shit is crazy.” - Ramsey Orta (2) 


“They jumped him and they were choking him. He was foaming at the mouth.” - Ramsey Orta, to the Daily News 


"And that’s it, he was done. The cops were saying, ‘No, he’s OK, he’s OK.’ He wasn’t OK.” - Ramsey Orta, to the Daily News 


“They’re covering their asses, he was breaking up a fight. They harassed and harassed my husband until they killed him.” - Esaw Garner, to the Daily News


“When I kissed my husband this morning, I never thought it would be for the last time.” - Esaw Garner, to the Daily News


“I saw him with his eyes wide open and I said, ‘Babe, don’t leave me, I need you.’ But he was already gone.” - Esaw Garner, to the Daily News 


“They wouldn’t tell me anything.” - Esaw Garner, claiming that police would not tell her what happened while at the hospital (3)


“They were choking him. He kept saying, ‘I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe! Get off of me, get off of me!’ and I didn’t hear any more talking after that” - Valencia Griffin, a witness to the death of Eric Garner (3)  


“He died right there.” - Valencia Griffin, a witness to the death of Eric Garner (3)


“This had nothing to do with the fight, this had something to do with something else.” - NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo, to the video camera after killing Eric Garner (3)   


“My office is working along with the NYPD to do a complete and thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding Mr. Garner's death.” - District Attorney Daniel M. Donovan Jr. (3)


“It’s the most inhumane, insensitive display of disregard for the citizens you’re supposed to protect that I’ve seen in a long time.” - Al Sharpton (4)


“When he was on the ground, they kept holding him by the neck.” - Gordon Benson, witness to the death of Eric Garner (5)


“He just gasped and then stopped moving. They threw him on a gurney and took him away.”  - Gordon Benson, witness to the death of Eric Garner (5)


"Garner weighed 400 pounds and had a series of health complications, which will no doubt be the blame for his death" - Carlos Miller, Photography is not a crime  

 

 

 

 

 

Mysterious Raid, Woman cuffed Nude After Flash Banged By Federal Agents

 

Homestead, Florida 

Created on June 25, 2014 

Kari Edwards, about police forcing her to remove towel during a no-knock raidKari Edwards was getting out of the shower when her door was smashed in by heavily armed men, who entered only after they deployed a Flash Bang Grenade, leaving burn marks on the floor from the explosion. As agents poured into the room, one demanded that Edwards drop her towel. When she did not respond immediately, it was ripped off her her. She was brought to the ground and handcuffed, forced to stay exposed and ridiculed by agents. This was two hours that Kari Edwards described as "hell." 

Edwards is not a member of some dangerous gang or a violent terrorist. She is an ex-employee of the DHS, and claims to have not have even a traffic ticket in over 10 years. This did not stop a group of Law Enforcement Officers to treat her in such a violent and degrading manner. While handcuffed and exposed on the floor, she recognized several of the men from her days at the DHS. But when she asked who they were or why they were searching, she was ridiculed or outright ignored. It wasn't until the end of the long search that she was finally given some answers. 

 

The Mysterious Raid

There is very little available information pertaining to the raid, and the story has not been covered by anyone in the Main Stream Media. According to Edwards, the warrant was for a search of electronic devices in relation to child pornography. She further claimed that they their concentration did not appear to be on her electronics, and they failed to seize any of the available computers. Her boyfriend works on old computers, so there were multiple hard drives that could have been taken. 

Kari Edwards, after being handcuffed naked, the police wreck her home conducting a no-knock raidIt is unclear why their search for electronics cause the necessity to break her shower door and an antique vase. But, what really should raise some questions, is the Department of Homeland Security being involved with a raid searching for pictures that have nothing to do with the security of our homeland. This question is enhanced by their refusal to identify themselves as a federal agency. When asked, Edwards said the men would just tell her they were police. 

If all the statements given by Edwards are true, then this will be one of the first violent raids that used flash bangs when neither drugs or guns were alleged to be a factor. The lack of reasoning leads to two possible conclusions, both of which bring more questions than answers. Was this a federal agency expanding their jurisdiction in an unlawful manner, or is there something that Edwards herself is not telling us. 

 

Grenades and Military Tactics

I first read about police using flash bang grenades when Albuquerque Police used one to disorient James Boyd before unleashing a barrage of non-lethal and lethal attacks that unnecessarily led to his death. Reports of police using these military devices have been surfacing since. Police continue to justify their use, even after one explodes on a pillow next to the head of a sleeping baby. The department justified their actions as the baby fought for his very life. They are quick to refer to the weapons as distraction devices, but they are rightfully categorized as disorientation devices, used by the military one the battlefield. 

The requirement for law enforcement to knock was not meant as a technicality, but as a way to allow the people to feel safe and secure in their homes. No-knock raids were first justified in the War on Drugs, as a means for taking down the most dangerous criminal enterprises. These raids were considered safer for law enforcement since there was a high probability that they would be met with armed resistance. These raids then started to be the standard operation when dealing with drugs. In 2012, Miami-Dade Police shot and killed a small time pot dealer during a no-knock raid. His girlfriend later explained that they did not know who was crashing through their front door. When police use these tactics on those unlikely to resist with deadly force, they increase the danger to both law enforcement and anyone inside the home. 

The justification for raids expanded from drug related crimes, to anyone that has a firearm. This was seen in the no-knock raid in Iowa over Credit Card Fraud. The department justified the raid for house guests saying that the army veteran that was not related to the alleged crime legally carried a sidearm. This was again demonstrated when D.C. Police conducted a SWAT style raid on the home of a financial adviser that was in possession of unregistered ammo. They criminally charged him after finding an inoperable shotgun shell that he had on his work desk. 

Kari Edwards, quote about police cuffing her naked and exposed during a no-knock raidIf everything that Edwards has claimed is true, then this will be the first time I have seen anything that indicates that these dangerous tactics are now being used on non-violent crimes that do not include allegations of drugs or guns. If this is the case, then the police are able to use these tactics on anyone and at anytime. Almost everyone on the other side of the door says they initially thought that they were under attack from a violent criminal. However, if you attempt to defend yourself from what you think is a threat against your family, they will respond by shooting you dead before you even know what is really going on.

.....Is this the new America....

 

SCANDALS THAT MAY BE OF INTEREST

Baby in critical condition after police throw a Flash Bang on his pillow Officers raid house, shoot two after seeing man stand up inside Police detain family after raiding wrong house, with no warrant Deputies Blindside Innocent Man During SWAT Style Raid

Players

Unidentified Law Enforcement Officers/Agents

  • Raided the home of Kari Edwards with a warrant for alleged child pornography (1)

Judge Jonathan Goodman

  • A Federal Magistrate Judge for the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Florida (1)

Kari Edwards

  • A former DHS employee (1)
  • Has been on disability since 2006
  • Forced to strip naked during a DHS raid on her home on June 10, 2014 (1)

Kari Edwards' Boyfriend

  • Fixes old computers (1)
  • Was home during the raid (1)

Facts

The Raid

  • The raid included numerous DHS agents and a helicopter (1)
  • They used flash bang grenades (1)
  • Kari Edwards was dressed only in a towel when they smashed through the door (1)
  • Edwards said that the agents demanded she drop the towel, and when she did not they tore it off of her (1)
  • Edwards was handcuffed and left on the floor completely nude (1)
  • She said she requested to be covered up several times, but was denied the basic request (1)
  • Her boyfriend said at least one agent was looking her up and down (1)
  • Edwards said the agents called her "stupid" and "retarded" when she asked who they were (1)

Surveillance Cameras

  • Kari Edwards said they have several surveillance cameras inside the home (2)
  • She claimed that the agents turned the camera's towards the wall as they found them (2)

The Warrant

  • Signed by Federal Magistrate Judge Jonathan Goodman (1)
  • Authorized the agents to search for computers and electronics (1)
  • Claimed that there was suspicion of child pornography (1)

Electronics 

  • Kari Edwards' boyfriend fixes up old computers (2)
  • She said that even though the warrant was for computers, the agents did not seem to pay much attention to them (2)
  • She also said that they did not seize any of the computers (2)

Items Broken

  • The agents trashed the house
  • Burn marks on the floor from the flash bang grenade
  • Smashed vase and clear glass shower walls 

Complaint With The ACLU

  • Kari Edwards and her husband filed a complaint with the ACLU (1) 

Timeline

6/10/14 - DHS conduct a SWAT style raid at 6:16 am on the home of Kari Edwards (1) 

Quotes

“They busted in like I was a terrorist or something.” - Kari Edwards, to theTea Party News Network


“[An officer] demanded that I drop the towel I was covering my naked body with before snatching it off me physically and throwing me to the ground.” - Kari Edwards, to theTea Party News Network


“They spent about 2 hours trashing my house, even smashing clear glass shower doors and a vintage statue.” - Kari Edwards, in her YouTube Channel 


“While I lay naked, I was cuffed so tightly I could not feel my hands. For no reason, at gunpoint.” - Kari Edwards, to theTea Party News Network


“[Agents] refused to cover me, no matter how many times I asked.” - Kari Edwards, to theTea Party News Network


“My boyfriend, who is asthmatic, started having trouble breathing due to the lingering smoke created by the flash bang grenade.” - Kari Edwards, in her YouTube Channel 


“[The DHS is a] beast that is accelerating our nation’s transformation into a police state through its establishment of a standing army, aka national police force.” - John W. Whitehead (1)


“I have never been in any trouble before." - Kari Edwards, to theTea Party News Network


“Haven’t even had a traffic ticket in over ten years.” - Kari Edwards, to theTea Party News Network

 

 

Drunk Cop Kills Teen In A Hit and Run

 

Pascagoula, Mississippi

Created on June 30, 2014

DA Tony Lawrence talking about Officer Daniel Snyder Killing Kaytlynn Brann during a drunk hit and run 16-year-old Kaytlynn Brann laid dying on street as the drunk driver responsible for taking her life drove away. It is hard to image a person so callous, but it becomes even worse when the person swore an oath and is trained as a first responder. Young Kaytlynn died from her injuries the following day. It is unclear if her chances of survival would have increased had the the public servant took responsibility for his actions and gave aid to the dying teen. But Instead the Pascagoula Police Officer ran like a coward, leaving his victim to die. 

Investigators not only blamed the incident on Kaytlynn, but they also allowed the officer to wait four hours for a blood alcohol test. This was despite a positive result to a field breath test that he initially refused to take. Even after lying to the investigators, Officer Daniel Snyder was able to dodge serious charges with their assistance. He was later given a light sentence for fleeing the scene, but was never charged with causing her death or the DUI. 

This was all made possible by a investigation from the Jackson County Sheriff's Office. Mike Byrd claimed that they would investigate this crime the same as any other, but he himself has been indicted on 31 criminal charges that include witness tampering, hindering prosecution, and attempting to influence others to perjure themselves before a grand jury. This entire incident is a blatant example of the double standards that allow those that swore an oath to disregard the law. 

 

The 'Investigation'

Kristen Brann was upset when months passed by without action from the Jackson County Sheriff's Office. Sheriff Byrd claimed that the investigation was taking a long time due to having to talk to several witnesses and wait for lab results. It is unclear why it took so long to interview witnesses for a crime that was far from complex. They also did not explain why they needed to wait for the blood alcohol results when there was already a positive result on the breathalyzer test which was taken closer to the time of the crime. 

When reviewing the facts, it appears that they did not intend to give Officer Snyder the same treatment as a normal suspect. First, they blame the event on a girl that was walking down the road and not the drunk officer that later fled the scene. They continue to point out that Brann was walking in the road, but the road had no sidewalk. They do not explain why Officer Snyder did not see her or her friend walking. Their is not a lot of available information about the details of the accident, but the defense and others that backed Snyder never made any claims to indicate that he only saw the girl when it was too late. There is no mention of a blind curb, her wearing dark clothing, or her suddenly moving in the way of the vehicle. Somehow, a deputy was able to quickly determine that it was not caused by delayed reactions due to Snyder being intoxicated or by the officer not properly paying attention to the road ahead of him. 

It is unclear why Snyder returned to the scene 16 minutes after fleeing, but the court battle over cell phone records suggests he called his lawyer before returning. He initially refused to take the breatalyzer test, but later complied. The results showed that he was under the influence while drive. However, the investigators then waited four hours and gave him a blood test. The results were .06, under the legal limit of .08. These results confirm the results of the field breath test, if he blew a .06 four hours after hitting the girl, then he was intoxicated while driving. But, for reasons unknown, the results of the first test were ignored and they Sheriff's Office waited for the results of a second test before making an arrest. 

 

The Blue Curtain


The judge himself was so certain of Snyder's drunk driving, that he mentioned it during the sentencing as a fact, not an opinion. Despite this evidence, the charges related to his drinking were never brought. It would be difficult to find a person that failed a breathalyzer but was allowed to instead take a second test hours later. It would be just as hard to find a person that was not arrested and charged after failing a breathalyzer test. But it would be next to impossible to find another person that was not fully charged after also fleeing the scene, lying to investigators, and initially refusing to take the field breathalyzer test. This special treatment was given to Officer Snyder, and it allowed him to dodge serious charges for a crime he committed.   

The DA and the Judge both said there were no winners, but the judge did point out how lucky Snyder was. I would have to partially disagree. Snyder won by being able to avoid proper charges, but it was not luck. Law Enforcement will often allow 'their own' to get away with crimes such as DUI. When discussing it in public that call it 'professional courtesy'. However, they are encouraging this type of behavior by not holding officers to the same legal standard. With the ability to drive drunk with minimal threat of legal consequences, it is only a matter of time before this type of event takes place. 

Law Enforcement officials continue to protect 'their own' even after the illegal behavior causes a tragedy such as the death of a teen. Several officers came to testify on Snyder's behalf, including Lt. Vernon Smith. Smith claimed that Officer Snyder "has a good heart". I can not think of anyone that would be described as having a good heart and running over a young girl and then driving away as she is dying. Like most cases of cops committing crimes, their fellow officers have no shame in defending their criminal activity. 

Players

Officer Daniel Snyder

  • A Pascagoula Police Officer (1)
  • Found guilty of a hit and run that took the life of Kaytlynn Brann 

Kaytlynn Brann

  • 16-year-old girl (1)
  • Killed by Officer Daniel Snyder in a hit and run (1) 

Lt. Vernon Smith

  • Pascagoula Police Lt. 
  • Testified on behalf of Officer Snyder (1) 

Judge Dale Harkey

  • Jackson County Circuit Court Judge 

Facts

The Incident 

  • Katelyn Braun was walking with a friend on Port Aux Chenes Road in Gulf Park Estates (2)(3)
  • Officer Daniel Snyder struck Katelyn with his truck (2)
  • According to witnesses, Snyder stopped initially, but then left the scene for about 15 minutes (3)
  • He then returned to the scene (3)
  • Officer Snyder first refused to take a breath test (8)
  • When he finally took the test, he was above the legal limit (8)
  • The investigators ran a blood test four hours after the incident, he showed .06 (8)
  • Officer Snyder was off duty, and on personal leave when the crime took place (3)
  • Brann died from her injuries the following day (3) 

The "Investigation"

  • The deputy conducting the investigation claimed that Brann was at fault, due to her walking in the road (3)
  • The road had no sidewalk, making it necessary to walk in the road (3)
  • Officer Daniel Snyder initially lied to deputies that were investigating, saying he did not drink alcohol before the accident (3)
  • A bud light beer cap was found in the console of his truck (6) 

Blood Alcohol Test

  • A blood test was taken at 11:45 p.m., showing a blood-alcohol level of .06 (7)
  • Brann was hit at 7:00 p.m. (7)  

Charges

  • Officer Daniel Snyder was charged only with the hit and run (1)
  • He was not charged with a DUI (1) 

Pre-trial motions

  • A defense motion to suppress the phone records of Officer Daniel Snyder was denied by the Judge (5)
  • A prosecution motion for the ambulance and phone records of Brann was granted by the Judge (5)
  • The defense made a motion to suppress the results of the blood alcohol test (5)  

Brann Phone Records

  • The defense filed a motion to suppress the phone records of Officer Daniel Snyder, which was denied (5)
  • However, the lawyers later agreed not to mention the phone records during the trial (5)
  • The phone records showed calls that Snyder made to his attorney after killing Brann (5)
  • It is unclear if this call was made during the 15 minutes that Officer Snyder fled the scene (5) 

The Trial 

 

  • Testimony revealed that Officer Snyder drank several beers before getting behind the wheel (3)
  • Lt. Vernon Smith testified on Officer Daniel Snyder's defense (1)
  • Other officers testified on his behalf, saying he was a good man, often helped others, and helped children in need (3) 

 

Conviction and Sentence

  • Officer Daniel Snyder was convicted of the hit and run
  • Officer Snyder could have been sentenced up to 20 years in prison and $10,000 in fines (2)
  • Officer Daniel Snyder was sentenced to 1 year in prison and 5 years post-release supervision (1)
  • He also must pay the Funeral costs of Kaytlynn Brann and a fine of $2000 (1) 
  • The court also ordered Snyder to be evaluated for alcohol abuse (1) 

Timeline

6/20/13 - Officer Daniel Snyder is sentenced to one year in prison for the hit and run death of Kaytlynn Brann (1)


5/23/14 - Officer Snyder was convicted of felony fleeing and accident (1)


1/17/14 - Judge Dale Harkey ruled in favor of the prosecutions motion for the ambulance and phone records of Kaytlynn Brann and against the defense motion to suppress Officer Snyder's phone records (4)


10/31/13 - A motion to suppress the phone records of Officer Daniel Snyder was filed by his attorney, Keith Miller (4)


July, 2013 - Officer Daniel Snyder was indicted by the Jackson County Grand Jury (1) 


2/22/13 - Officer Daniel Snyder kills Kaytlynn Brann with his vehicle, and then drives away. (1) 

Quotes

"You made a real stupid decision, but I can't sentence you over suspicions or what I may believe. I have to sentence you based on the conviction." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)

 


"Since this happened, he's been in jail one night. I've been without my daughter for more than a year. I think he needs to spend more than one night in jail for the choice he made that night." - Keith Brann (1)

 


"There is no pleasant outcome here today. There is no winner. The family knows Kaytlynn isn't coming back." - DA Tony Lawrence (1)


"It does not entitle him to make the choices he made on Feb. 22 (2013) to disregard the law he was sworn to uphold. The state mandates that everyone had to be held accountable under the law." - DA Tony Lawrence (1) 


"There ought to be some penalty which tells the community that when you take an oath to serve and protect and you violate that oath there will be consequences." - DA Tony Lawrence (1)


"He has a good heart." - Lt. Vernon Smith, Pascagoula Police Department (1)

 


"I've seldom seen a more tragic case than this has been -- for Kaytlynn, her family, for Mr. Snyder -- nothing more than fate brought you together that night." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)


"A pretty young girl, her life snatched away in the blink of an eye by a vehicle driven by a law enforcement officer who had been drinking. There's no question of that. You should have known better." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)


"A life destroyed, for what? Drinking a beer on a trip to Lowe's?" - Judge Dale Harkey (1)


"[Y]ou violated your oath as a law enforcement officer." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)

 


"You brought suspicion and controversy to the local law enforcement community." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)


"I have a daughter only two years younger than Kaytlynn. I won't presume to imagine the sadness and feeling of loss the family must feel." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)

 


"You're the luckiest man in the world right now, even if you don't know it." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)


"Daniel Snyder made the choice to drink and drive and leave the scene of a horrible and tragic accident. Because our law is drafted requiring impairment and a separate act of negligence, Daniel Snyder escaped a DUI Causing Death charge." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)

 


"I think if you drive drunk you should be criminally liable for your decision, regardless of your act of negligence. Drinking and driving should be considered to be an act of negligence in and of itself. But, unfortunately, that is not the law in Mississippi. I hope the legislature will look at this case as an example of why our law needs to be changed." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)

 


"As a law enforcement officer, [Snyder] should have stopped and helped to control the scene until the deputies arrived. Instead, he chose to ignore the oath he took and left the scene." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)


"I've seldom seen a more tragic or more heartbreaking case. Nothing but fate brought you two together and it's ruined two lives." - Judge Dale Harkey (1)


"Everyone has to be held accountable for the choices they make. He chose to drink, he chose to drive and he chose to leave the scene." - DA Tony Lawrence (3)


"This is a sad day for law enforcement and a sad day for the community." - Jackson County Sheriff Mike Byrd (4)


"This case took a longtime to investigate because of the multiple witnesses and crime lab results. Nobody benefits from this. I want to commend the traffic division, especially Capt. Boomer White, for an outstanding job and the many hours spent on the investigation." - Jackson County Sheriff Mike Byrd (4)  


"This is a tragedy for the family. We did not waiver in this investigation in anyway. It just took time. We will continue to work hard when investigating cases no matter who they involve." - Jackson County Sheriff Mike Byrd (4)

"He's only been charged with a crime, not convicted. He will have his day in court." - Police Chief Kenny Johnson (7)


"He told us that the man had left the scene. He came back 16 minutes later. That he refused to blow, then 45 minutes later he did blow positive, and four hours later they did a blood draw. That he would be arrested and he would stay in jail until Monday morning. He would bond out and then we found out the next day that that was not, in fact, true." - Kristen Brann (8) 

"The police officer at the hospital said they weren't going to show preferential treatment, but that's exactly what they're doing." - Kristen Brann (8)

 


"If it were me, I would be straight in jail. And that's not right. There shouldn't be a double standard." - Alison Melton, a family friend (8)


"We had multiple witnesses that had to be interviewed. Obviously, that takes a lot of time. We had things that had to go off to the crime lab. That took time for that to come back." - Sheriff Mike Byrd (8)

 


"I want to ensure them that justice is going to be served. We're fixing to present this to the grand jury." - Sheriff Mike Byrd (8)

 

(1) blog.gulflive - Daniel Snyder gets 1 year in prison in hit-and-run death of Ocean Springs teen

(2) The Washington Times - Pascagoula officer guilty of fleeing fatal crash

(3) SunHerald - Pascagoula police officer will serve one year in jail in teen's death

(4) Blog.gulflive.com - Pascagoula police officer Daniel Snyder charged in death of Ocean Springs teen 

(5) Blog.gulflive.com - Phone records of Pascagoula officer Daniel Snyder OK'd in hit-and-run case, judge rules

(6) newsms - Pascagoula Police Officer Guilty of Fleeing Accident that Killed a Teen

(7) MS News Now - Officer charged in Ocean Springs teen's hit and run death

(8) WLOX 13 - Victim's father: 'I'm afraid of it becoming a cover-up'

 

11111willet

Buffalo, New York

 

John Willet speaks out about Buffalo police brutality beatingBuffalo police officers stand by, un-phased by the sight of a fellow officer unjustly beating a subdued suspect, cuffed and defenseless to the assault.  John Willet, 23, lays on the sidewalk continuously subjected to blows from Officer John Cirulli.  None of the other officers try to stop this obvious example of excessive force. Furthermore, no officer on the scene reports the misconduct, which at the very least was against procedure.

Moments earlier, Willet led officers on a short foot chase before stopping to put his hands in the air, a universal sign of surrender.  Instead of directive orders and handcuffs, Ofc. Cirulli took a swing at the suspect's face.  Knocking him to the ground, Cirulli gets on top of Willet, followed immediately by a second officer who takes place beside the downed suspect.  Willet struggles to free himself.  He takes numerous knees to the abdomen and head, as Ofc. Cirulli pushes Willet's face against the pavement.  Willet pleads " officer, officer .... officer stop, please stop, I'm sorry".  As two additional officers arrive to help, Cirulli leverages himself using his knee to pin Willet to the pavement as the other officers cuff him.  

The suspect was subdued.  He is quiet, with his arms cuffed behind his back and no longer struggling.  At this moment of complete defenselessness, Ofc. Cirulli punches Willet in the head several times.  From down the block where the bystander is recording on a cell phone, you can clearly hear him scream out in agony and plea for  the officer to stop.  Still pinned under the officer's weight, Willet is slapped in the face a couple times.  As the officer stands up, he slaps the suspect in the face again. Once on his feet, Ofc. Cirulli gives him a kick to the torso and one final slap to the face.  

 

Despite Officers' Apathy, Brutality Comes To Light And Investigation Ensues


The video taken by cell phone was posted on Facebook, and later uploaded onto Cop Block of Western New York's YouTube channel.  The video quickly goes viral.  Two of those views resulted from emails sent to the mayor of Buffalo, Byron Brown and the Police Commissioner, Daniel Derenda.  Both take a strong public opposition stance against the conduct they saw in video, and vow to properly investigate the matter.  Six officers are taken off the street.  Officer John Cirulli is singled out as the primary target of the probe, and the officer seen in the video beating John Willet.  He is put on unpaid leave.  The remaining 5 officers involved are put on paid administrative leave.  With reports that other officer(s) may have used excessive force, all remain in questionable status.

Darius Pridgen, Buffalo Common Council President, warns of cop confiscating cell phonBuffalo Common Council President, Darius Prigden, says it has been brought to his attention that an officer on the scene may have confronted the bystander who took the cell phone video, insisted the footage be deleted or the phone would be confiscated as evidence.  Depending on findings of the investigation, Prigden reserves the action on lawmakers.  In an interview with WGRZ Channel 2 News, Prigden makes sure to note "The Buffalo Common Council does have subpoena powers and investigative powers," and adds "We have video evidence, there are witnesses, so it's kind of hard to say that something did not occur."  In concurrence, these seem to be very pointed statements indicating that if action is not taken as a result of the internal investigation, lawmakers will.

 

 

Players

John Cirulli

  • Buffalo Police Officer and primary target of probe (1)

John Willet  

  • victim of police brutality/excessive force (1)

Dennis R. Gilbert
Brian O. Griffin
Lindsay A. Laracuente-Zgoda
Lamar M. McCulley
Nicholas A. Militello

  • Buffalo Police Officers also involved with incident and under investigation (1)

Phillip Dabney Jr.  

  • Attorney for Willet (1)

Facts

The Video 

  • Cell phone video of John Willet getting beat by Buffalo, NY Police is taken by an onlooking bystander.  (3)
  • The video is uploaded to Facebook, and then to Cop Block of WNY's YouTube  channel.  (3)
  • The Mayor of Buffalo, Byron Brown and Buffalo Police Commissioner, Daniel Derenda are emailed a copy of the video.  (3)

The Police report

  • Police notice a vehicle driving at a high rate of speed and pass another vehicle on the passenger side of the street (3)
  • Officers pulled alongside the vehicle and ask the driver, John Willet, to slow down (3) 
  • Willet exits the vehicle and starts running (3)
  • Police chased and arrested Willet (3)
  • Police say Willet resisted arrest and had to be forcibly subdued (2)
  • Police found heroin on his person and crack cocaine in his vehicle (5)

John Willet's accounting of the incident 

  • Willet was driving down the street (2)
  • An unmarked police vehicle pulled up beside him (2)
  • " I got nervous.  I didn't know who it was obviously.  Hopefully the police, but I'm just trying to get away from it all." (2)
  • He pulled over, got out of his vehicle and started running.  After a short foot chase he stopped.  (2) 
  • " I put my hands up and that's when I got the first swing to the face.  I surrendered.  I stopped.  I put my hands up.  It was no more point to run."  (2)
  • Willet says the following was said to him by an officer while he was getting hit:  “This is what happens when you run in Buffalo. If you run in Buffalo you’re going to get beat. I bet you won’t run anymore.”  (2)
  • After he was arrested and put in the police cruiser, Willet says he continued to be assulted by Officer Cirulli  (7)
  • Ciirulli was asking for his name, and Willet initially refused to provide it  (7)
  • “The officers in the car, they told me, just give him my name. Don’t antagonize him cause he’s going to keep beating me. They’re going to keep hitting me. And they said the faster I comply the faster I can go down to the holding center,” Willet said. (7)
  • Willet says he spoke to a lieutenant while on the ground.  (1) 

 


Excessive force used against John Willet caught on video

  • Officer John Cirulli and another officer struggle to subdue and cuff John Willet (5)
  • Officer Cirulli knees him repeatedly in the abdomen and hits him in the head, as Willet pleads for the officer to stop. (5)
  • Two additional officers arrive to assist 
  • Officer Cirulli kneels on the back of Willet's throat or upper torso and appears to punch him several times on the top or back of the head (2)
  • After Willet was cuffed and subdued Officer Cirulli continues to kneel on Willet, and slaps him a couple of times in the head (1)
  • Officer Cirulli hits and slaps Willet in the head, stands up and kicks him in the abdomen several times, and then leans back down to slap him in face and head a couple more times. (5)
  • While Willet sits inside a police car, Officer Cirulli hits him again (6)
  • The video is shown to Paul McCauley by News 4 Investigates.  (2)
  • Paul McCauley is a certified police trainer.  His considered an expert in police procedures.  He often testifies in cases involving misconduct and abuse, both for and against the officer involved.  (2)
  • McCauley:  Buffalo Police used excessive force.  (2)

The Investigation and aftermath 

  • Buffalo Police Internal Affairs start investigation of six officers involved  (1) 
  • Officer John Cirulli is put on unpaid leave (1)
  • The 5 other officers involved are put on paid administrative leave (1)
  • Erie County District Attorney, Frank Sedita offers assistance of his office to the Commissioner of Police (8)
  • Elliot District of Buffalo Common Council President, Darius Prigden:  Says it has been brought to his attention that an officer on the scene may have confronted the bystander who took the cell phone video, insisting the footage be deleted or the phone would be confiscated as evidence.  (8)
  • The United States Attorney Office and FBI look into possible violations of John Willet's civil rights (1)
  • Through his attorney Phillip Dabney Jr., John Willet claims there was a lieutenant on scene, and that he spoke with that lieutenant while on the ground. (1)
  • Arrest documents list a lieutenant on scene supervising, but he is not seen on the bystander's cell phone video
  • News 4 Investigates files a Freedom Of Information request, for the video of a Buffalo city street camera that caught the incident (5)
  • From that video, you can see a lieutenant at the scene. 
  • Lieutenants wear white shirts, whereas officers' uniform tops are dark.
  • From the available footage of the city camera, it is unclear whether the lieutenant witnessed any of the excessive force used against John Willet
  • John Cirulli pleads guilty on two counts of deprivation of rights under color of law and scheduled for sentencing in September (5)

 

Timeline

04/19/14 - Police Brutality/excessive force inflicted on John Willet (1) 


04/24/14 - Cell phone video is uploaded to Facebook.  (4) 


04/27/14 - Video is uploaded to Cop Block of WNY's YouTube channel.  


04/27/14 - Both the mayor of Buffalo, Byron Brown and the Buffalo Police Commissioner, Daniel Derenda receive the video via email.  (4) 


04/28/14 - Buffalo Police Internal Affairs begins their investigation into the incident.  (1)


04/28/14 - Officer John Cirulli put on unpaid leave. (1)


04/28/14 - Officers put on paid adminstrative leave (1):

Dennis R. Gilbert
Brian O. Griffin
Lindsay A. Laracuente-Zgoda
Lamar M. McCulley
Nicholas A. Militello


 05/22/14 - Officer Cirulli pleads guilty in federal court on two counts of deprivation of rights under color of law (7)


05/23/14 - Officer Cirulli resigns (7)


06/17/14 - John Willet files a Notice Of Claim against the City of Buffalo, Buffalo Police Department, et. all

 

Quotes

" I put my hands up and that's when I got the first swing to the face.  I surrendered.  I stopped.  I put my hands up.  It was no more point to run."  - John Willet (2) 


“The only thing I can think was just to keep telling them or asking them, or begging them to stop hitting me. My face obviously started hurting. I felt my face starting to swell up. I didn’t want to have a shut eye,”  - John Willet (2) 


“I ran because of the fact that I did have some type of drugs on me,” he admitted. “So, I ran and I figured I’d probably get away but it didn’t work out that way.”  - John Willet (2) 


“This is what happens when you run in Buffalo. If you run in Buffalo you’re going to get beat. I bet you won’t run anymore.”  - Alleged statement said to John Willet during assult (2) 


“John allowed his anger to get the best of him based on the behavior of that suspect before and after he was taken into custody. It doesn’t make what he did right. It was wrong.”  - Rodney O. Personius, Attorney for John Cirulli (5) 


“It would completely destroy the confidence of the public if they thoughts that police officers could get away with hurting somebody, or with arresting somebody with less than probably cause.”  - United States Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. (1) 


“It is unnecessary force to impact or strike a person who is in the prone position and handcuffed and if it is unnecessary it is unreasonable to strike and by police training and by law that is excessive force”  - Paul McCauley, certified police trainer and professor emeritus at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. (2) 


“Police officers may use force. They may not use excessive force.” He said an officer “may use the amount of force necessary to overcome the resistance of the subject.” - Paul McCauley (2)


” [The] subject was prone, handcuffed and resistance was, as I viewed it, virtually zero."          - Paul McCauley (2) 


“Based on what I saw there was no resistance from the subject on the ground the officers’ use of force–the kicking, the slapping, and if it was the kicking to the head, that could be deadly force and absolutely unjustified and therefore excessive force.”  - Paul McCauley (2) 


“After I was put in the vehicle, after I had handcuffs on me, I continued to be hit,” Willet said. (2) 


"We have video evidence, there are witnesses, so it's kind of hard to say that something did not occur."  - Darius Pridgen, Buffalo Common Council President (8)


"I hope what is added to this investigation, is the question about whether the officer actually asked for the bystander's telephone," ... "I think that's important because if we do have officers out there who think it's okay to take someone's phone or to tell them what to delete, we have to address that." - Darius Pridgen (8)

 

 

 

  1. Luke Moretti and Rose Ciotta, "News 4 identifies suspended officers in alleged police bruttality", www.wivb.com
  2. Luke Moretti and Rose Ciotta, "Man speaks out after alleged police brutality", www.wivb.com
  3. Lou Michel and T.J.Pignataro, "6 city cos put on leave as beating of suspect is probed", www.buffalonews.com
  4. Lou Michel, "Victim in police brutality case suffered neck injuries, lawyer says", www.buffalonews.com
  5. Luke Moretti and Rose Ciotta, "News 4 obtains new video of Riverside sidewalk beating by police", www.wivb.com
  6. Phil Fairbanks, "Buffalo Police officer admits hitting suspect - twice", www.buffalonews.com
  7. Luke Moretti, Rose Ciotta, and Ed Drantch, "Buffalo office in video beating resigns, pleads guilty", www.wivb.com
  8. Dave McKinley, "Probe into BuffaloPolice Beating Caught on video continues", www.wgrz.com