LOL: Pakistani Protester Dies From Inhaling Smoke From Burning American Flags At Rally Against United States, Another Killed By Beating By Police After The Animals Set Fire To A Press Club, And Yet Another Killed After Hundreds Broke Through Barricade To Get To US Consulate

September 18, 2012

PAKISTAN – In an apparent case of red, white and blue revenge, a Pakistani protester died yesterday after inhaling smoke from a burning American flag during an anti-US rally.

Abdullah Ismail succumbed at Mayo Hospital in Lahore a day after attending the fierce protest at the city’s Mall Road, where an estimated 10,000 people rallied.

Witnesses said Ismail had complained of feeling ill after breathing fumes from burning flags, Pakistan’s Express Tribune reported.

Another Pakistani protester was killed during clashes with police yesterday after demonstrators set a press club ablaze, apparently angry that their protest of an anti-Islam film wasn’t getting enough media coverage.

Hundreds set fire to the club in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province’s Upper Dir area, authorities said. Police said cops charged the crowd, beating them with batons.

The mob then set a government office ablaze.

The protester died and several were wounded when police and the demonstrators exchanged gunfire, police said.

Also yesterday, a man died after being shot in the head Sunday during a march in which hundreds of people broke through a barricade to get to the US Consulate in the southern city of Karachi.

There were more clashes in Karachi yesterday as demonstrators from the student wing of the Jamaat-e-Islami party tried to reach the consulate.

Police lobbed tear gas, fired rounds in the air and made 40 arrests. No injuries were reported.

Pakistanis have also held many peaceful protests against the film, which critically portrays the prophet Mohammed. One held in the southwest town of Chaman yesterday was attended by about 3,000 students and teachers.

The chief justice of Pakistan’s supreme court ordered the state telecommunications authority to block the film on YouTube because it is considered blasphemous.

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Zimmerman Released On Bond, Again, After Shooting And Killing Sanford Florida Druggie In Self Defense

July 6, 2012

SANFORD, FLORIDA – George Zimmerman was released from jail on Friday, one day after a Florida judge set bail at $1 million.

Judge Kenneth R. Lester Jr. found that Zimmerman’s deceit over cash holdings at his first bond hearing in April was not enough to hold him without bail. However, he also said he believed the suspect may have been planning to flee the country to avoid prosecution in the killing of Florida teen Trayvon Martin.

Zimmerman had to post 10% of the $1 million — or $100,000 — to meet the requirement for release.

He wore a white dress shirt under a gray suit as he walked out of jail and into a waiting SUV.

“We are confident and comfortable that George will be safe,” Zimmerman’s attorney, Don West, told CNN outside the jail following his client’s release.
Zimmerman out on bond

“We were hoping the bail would be considerably less than what it was. And we will take the judge’s comments to heart, but we don’t necessarily agree with them and we will decide what is next,” he said.

An initial bond of $150,000 was revoked last month after Lester learned that Zimmerman and his wife, Shellie, had failed to disclose more than $150,000 in donations from the public.

The judge’s order Thursday said that the new $1 million bail order was not a punishment but an amount that assured the court that Zimmerman would not abscond.

In his ruling, Lester wrote about the first bond hearing and noted an undisclosed second passport kept in Zimmerman’s safe deposit box.

“Notably, together with the passport, the money only had to be hidden for a short time for him to leave the country if the defendant made a quick decision to flee,” the judge said. “It is entirely reasonable for this court to find that, but for the requirement that he be placed on electronic monitoring, the defendant and his wife would have fled the United States with at least $130,000 of other people’s money.”

Lester wrote the defendant’s plans to flee were “thwarted.”

Zimmerman, 28, is charged with second-degree murder in Martin’s February 26 shooting death. Under Florida law, second-degree murder is a bondable offense.

Speaking to reporters in New Orleans before Zimmerman left jail, Martin’s parents said they are struggling, but have faith all will end well.

“As we said from the beginning, we have strong faith in God,” said Tracy Martin, Trayvon’s father. “And we’ll continue to lean on God and ask Him to give us the strength and continue to give us the faith in the justice system, and justice will prevail.”

Judge Lester imposed new restrictions on Zimmerman that he did not face when he was out on bond the first time.

Zimmerman must report to officials every two days, cannot open or maintain a bank account and cannot be on the property of an airport. He also cannot apply for or obtain a passport.

He must abide by a curfew from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m., and like before, will be monitored electronically.

Zimmerman, a Sanford neighborhood watch volunteer, acknowledged fatally shooting the unarmed Martin after calling police to report a suspicious person. Zimmerman, who is white and Hispanic, said Martin attacked him.

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Savage Black Beasts Shoot And Kill Sherman Oaks California Cook Over Long Wait Time At Restaurant – Caught On Video

July 4, 2012

VAN NUYS, CALIFORNIA — Police released public surveillance images on Tuesday of two suspects in the shooting death of a cook and father of five who was gunned down at the Sherman Oaks restaurant where he worked.

KNX 1070′s Claudia Peschiutta reports Raul Lopez was working one of his two jobs when the robbery occurred.

Lopez, 38, was fatally shot in the chest shortly after 11 p.m. last Friday night at Hoagies & Wings on Ventura Boulevard as he tried to ward off a group of five black men who were causing a disturbance.

Police said one of the customers apparently became angry with Lopez about how long it was taking for the food to be prepared, and some racial slurs were reportedly used.

“It was a random dispute that went tragically wrong,” said LAPD Detective James Nuttle.

Lopez’s wife, Guadalupe, and some of his children joined detectives assigned to the Van Nuys Station at a news conference Tuesday to plea for the public’s help in solving the killing.

“Please, I need help, I don’t know what to do,” she pleaded.

Lopez is believed to be the family’s sole provider. The couple have a 16-year-old son, a 7-year-old son and three girls younger than 6.

“He’s my only dad and I really car about him, but I can’t do nothing anymore,” daughter Melesio said.

The suspects — all described as black men in their 30s — fled in a Cadillac Escalade or other dark-colored SUV after the shooting.

Three of the suspects were described as large men about 6’4″ tall and 300 pounds or more.

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7 And 8 Year Old Children And Counselor Leaving Washington DC Summer Camp Lunch Program Shot By Savage Black Beast Trying To Kill Another Man

June 26, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – The children were returning from lunch, marching in line and singing songs when the bullets started to fly.

A 7-year-old boy was shot in the right shoulder. An 8-year-old was struck in the right ankle. A counselor was hit in his left thigh but managed to usher the group of about 30 children to safety, D.C. police said. The shooting victims were expected to survive.

The children and their counselor were apparently caught in a spray of bullets fired by one man at another for reasons that aren’t clear, police said. The gunman fired at the second man as he ran toward the children in the 1900 block of Savannah Street SE, police said.

Police were looking for a black male wearing a white T-shirt, possibly with a ponytail. They were also looking for the man targeted by the shooter.

“Certainly we don’t think they were shooting at 6-year-old children,” said 7th District Cmdr. Joel Maupin.

Police combed a parking lot and grassy area about 50 yards from where the children were shot. More then two dozen police cars were on the scene.

The shooting occurred shortly after noon near the heart of the Villages of Parklands, a neatly manicured public housing area.

The children, ages 6 to 12, had been attending the Villages of Parklands community summer camp. Most of the group lived in the Orchard Park neighborhood. The counselor, in his 40s, was an area pastor who worked for the Villages of Parklands, neighbors said.

The group was returning from a federally funded meals program. It was the first day of the three-month DC Free Summer Meals Program available to poor children around the city.

Neighbors said they heard the children singing “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom,” and then nearly a dozen gunshots.

“I’m so afraid,” said Angela Agnew, holding her 1-year-old grandson. “It’s terrible. You can’t bring your kids outside without worrying about getting killed.”

Barry Lynn said he expects more shootings as the summer heats up.

“Due to the economy, people are hungry, people are desperate,” Lynn said. “You are going to see a lot of these senseless shootings.”

The management company for the public housing apartments, William C. Smith & Co., did not return calls for comment.

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Marysville Washington Police Officer Derek Carlile Charged In Shooting Death Of His 7 Year Old Daughter – Moron Left Loaded Handgun With Safety Off In Car Full Of Kids

May 26, 2012

MARYSVILLE, WASHINGTON – Prosecutors charged a Washington state police officer Tuesday in the accidental death of his 7-year-old daughter, saying it was unconscionable for him to leave his loaded handgun loose in the family van, where the girl’s younger brother grabbed it and shot her.

Marysville police officer Derek Carlile could face up to 10 years in prison if convicted of second-degree manslaughter, a charge that involves criminal negligence.

Carlile “failed to heed … a substantial risk that death would occur when he placed and left his loaded, unsecured revolver in an enclosed van with four children inside,” Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Lisa Paul wrote in charging papers.

“Though the undeniable tragedy and grief that has stricken the defendant and his family is staggering, compassion must be balanced with accountability,” she wrote.

The shooting occurred March 10 while the van was parked at a store in Stanwood. Carlile and his wife were outside the van when the 3-year-old, who had a fascination with guns, got out of his booster seat, grabbed the weapon and shot his sister Jenna in the torso, investigators said. The safety of the gun was off, they said.

Carlile’s attorney, David Allen, said the family was disappointed in the charging decision. Carlile takes full responsibility for his daughter’s death, but his actions weren’t criminal, Allen said.

“This is a double tragedy for the Carlile family that not only lost Jenna, but now also faces the possibility of losing Derek to prison,” Allen wrote in a news release.

The charging papers say the 31-year-old Carlile, a police officer since 2009, had worked until 2 a.m., then woke up that morning to go antique shopping with a friend. He was late returning from the shopping trip, and he and his family had to rush to get ready to attend a wedding reception.

When he got into the van, he placed his personal .38-caliber revolver – not his service weapon – in a bin on the floor between the driver’s and front passenger’s seats, a space typically reserved for cups and keys, the deputy prosecutor wrote.

His wife asked what he was doing because he usually wore the gun or placed it in a locking compartment on the driver-side door. She later told investigators that she assumed he moved the gun after she brought it to his attention.

On the way to the wedding, the family stopped at the art studio and store in Stanwood. Carlile’s wife, Forrest, went inside, and Carlile spoke with the owner, the same friend with whom he had gone antique shopping that morning.

Carlile heard the gunshot, and another daughter, age 5, got out of the van, saying something about the boy, Jenna and the gun. Carlile ran to the van, opened the sliding door, and saw Jenna slumped over, still wearing her seatbelt. He tried to save her life, but she died at a hospital.

Carlile later refused to let detectives speak with his other children, and prosecutors used a special court proceeding to compel the testimony of the 5-year-old. She told them she and her older sister remained in their seats while the 3-year-old ran up and grabbed the gun, the documents state.

“She said she heard a boom and saw smoke coming from the victim,” Paul wrote.

Detectives did not interview the 3-year-old because of his age. The other child in the car was a 1-year-old.

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Zimmerman Spoke In Public Forum A Year Ago In Support Of Black Homeless Man Beaten By Son Of Sanford Florida Police Officer And Covered Up By Corrupt Department

May 24, 2012

SANFORD, FLORIDA – Neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman accused a Florida police department of corruption more than a year before he shot unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin, saying at a public forum the agency covered up the beating of a black homeless man by the son of a white officer.

Zimmerman’s public comments could be important because the Martin family and supporters contend the neighborhood watch volunteer singled Martin out because he was black. Zimmerman has a Peruvian mother and a white father. His supporters have said he is not racist.

Zimmerman, who claims the Feb. 26 shooting was self-defense, was initially not arrested. But after nationwide protests and an investigation by a state prosecutor, he was charged.

Zimmerman is free on bond awaiting his second-degree murder trial for shooting Martin. Martin was walking back to a townhome he was staying at when he got into a fight with Zimmerman, who shot him in the chest at close range.

“I would just like to state that the law is written in black and white,” Zimmerman said during a 90-second statement to Sanford city commissioners at a community forum on Jan. 8, 2011.

The forum took place days after a video of the beating went viral on the Internet and then-Sanford Police Chief Brian Tooley was forced to retire. Tooley’s department faced criticism for dragging its feet in arresting Justin Collison, the son of a police lieutenant.

“I’d like to know what action the commission is taking in order to repeal Mr. Tooley’s pension,” Zimmerman said to the commission. “I’m not asking you to repeal his pension; I believe he’s already forfeited his pension by his illegal cover-up in corruption in what happened in his department.”

Trayvon Martin was talking on his cell phone when he was shot and killed in February.

The Miami Herald first reported details from the January 2011 community forum Wednesday. The Associated Press obtained a copy of the tape from the meeting.

In the speech, Zimmerman said he witnessed “disgusting” behavior by officers when he was part of a ride-along program, though the agency said it did not know when, if ever, Zimmerman was in that program.

“The officer showed me his favorite hiding spots for taking naps. He explained to me he doesn’t carry a long gun in his vehicle because in his words, ‘Anything that requires a long gun requires a lot of paperwork and you’re gonna find me as far away from it.'”

Zimmerman also said the officer in question “took two lunch breaks and attended a going away party for one of his fellow officers.”

Sanford Mayor Jeff Triplett and interim police chief Richard Myers were both unavailable for comment.

Tooley’s successor, Bill Lee, temporarily resigned his post following a no-confidence vote by city commissioners.

Lee offered to resign permanently, but his commissioners turned down his request. He is on paid leave.

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Savage Black Beasts Kill Random White Jogger In Daytime Drive-By Shooting In Raytown Missouri

May 16, 2012

RAYTOWN, MISSOURI – After three days, the Metro Squad expects it will disband on Wednesday and turn over the investigation into the murder of Harry Stone to the Raytown Police Department.

Stone, 60, was killed while jogging Sunday morning at about 7:20 at 67th and Blue Ridge Blvd. Police suspect the murder could have been a gang initiation or a dare.

On Tuesday police returned to canvass the area to try to find evidence that will lead them to Stone’s killer. About 35 cadets from the police academy assisted.

Several people witnessed Stone’s murder. They told police a dark-colored car driving north on 67th Street passed Stone as he was jogging, and without slowing down, opened fire on him. Witnesses say there were two black men inside the car.

“It was daylight. There were witnesses,” said Thomas Prudden, a Raytown police detective. “But it was such a quick incident and there was nothing to tell you it was going to happen. Somebody driving by, holding a gun outside and shooting and then driving off. You can imagine how hard that is to investigate or get evidence from.”

Also Tuesday, police determined that a car they stopped Monday night that matched the description of the suspect vehicle is unrelated to the crime.

Monday night at about 7:30 p.m., police tried to stop a dark-colored car, but the driver sped away. Police chased him to 61st and Agnes, where about 15 officers from three agencies surrounded him.

The driver was taken into custody but Tuesday morning police determined he was not connected to Stone’s murder.

The suspect vehicle is a dark-colored, 4-door sedan captured on surveillance video from the BP gas station near the scene of the murder.

Stone’s daughter spoke to the media Monday afternoon.

“Do the right thing,” Susan Li pleaded to those who may know something about the crime.

Li said her father was very active, jogging nearly everyday by himself or with his dog. He was also active in the church. He is survived by his wife, children and grandchildren.

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Zimmerman Bond Set At $150,000 With Minimal Supervision Upon Release (State’s Case Appears To Be Very Thin, Flawed, And Based On Prosecution’s Assumptions)

April 20, 2012

SANFORD, FLORIDA – A lawyer for a neighborhood watch volunteer charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of an unarmed black teenager is requesting bond for his client in a Florida courtroom Friday morning.

George Zimmerman, 28, was charged on April 11 in the February death of Trayvon Martin, after the case sparked a heated, national debate over racial profiling and saw thousands of protesters demand Zimmerman’s arrest. Martin’s family contends Zimmerman racially profiled their son, who was walking back from a convenience store in Sanford, Florida.

Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer who is Hispanic, maintains he acted in self-defense. His family says he did not profile Martin.

At 9 a.m. ET, attorney Mark O’Mara began the process of filing a bond motion with the case’s judge, Kenneth Lester Jr., in a Sanford courtroom. Among other factors, Lester will examine the seriousness of the crime, Zimmerman’s ties to the community, his conduct and whether he poses a danger or flight risk. The defense is expected to argue Zimmerman is not a flight risk or danger to the community.

Special prosecutor Angela Corey has the burden of showing why bond should not be set or if it should be high.

Refresh this page for updates on the bond hearing:

[Updated at 11:10 a.m. ET] The judge has set a bond of $150,000, with conditions.

The conditions include:

– GPS monitoring

– No contact with the victim’s family

[Updated at 11:07 a.m. ET] The state’s attorney is now making a case against leniency when it comes to the bond decision, and has asked for no bond, or a bond of $1 million.

The state’s attorney argued that Zimmerman is a danger to the public, citing not only the second-degree murder charge, but a previous charge of battery against a law enforcement officer, which was discussed at length earlier in the hearing.

[Updated at 11:02 a.m. ET] The hearing is now turning back to the issue of bond. O’Mara is asking the judge for:

– $15,000 bond.

– The ability of Zimmerman to leave the state

– Secrecy over Zimmerman’s whereabouts

O’Mara, speaking to Zimmerman’s ability to pay bond, noted that Zimmerman cannot work in public because of the case’s publicity, and that his wife is not working because she is in school.

[Updated at 10:58 a.m. ET] The prosecuting attorney is now questioning Zimmerman. He asked whether Zimmerman had ever said he was sorry when he spoke to police. Zimmerman responded that he had told one of the investigators that “I felt sorry for the family.”

The prosecutor told Zimmerman that if that’s true, it must have been recorded. He asked Zimmerman if he was sure, and Zimmerman said he was “fairly certain.”

[Updated at 10:55 a.m. ET] “I wanted to say I am sorry for the loss of your son,” Zimmerman said on the stand, apparently addressing Martin’s parents, who are in the room.

Zimmerman also said he thought Martin was older than he was, and that he “didn’t know if (Martin) was armed or not.”

[Updated at 10:54 a.m. ET] Zimmerman is about the address the court. His attorney has called him to the stand.

[Updated at 10:53 a.m. ET] The prosecuting attorney, after saying “I didn’t know we were going to be trying the case today,” is back to ask questions of state attorney’s investigator Dale Gilbreath, after O’Mara asked questions challenging the state’s assertions.

The prosecutor asked Gilbreath whether there was any evidence indicating that Zimmerman’s account that Martin bashed his head against a sidewalk wasn’t true. Gilbreath said yes.

[Updated at 10:47 a.m. ET] O’Mara is back to questioning state attorney’s investigator Dale Gilbreath, one of the investigators in the case.

O’Mara asked whether Gilbreath knows who started the fight between Zimmerman and Martin, or had any evidence as to who started the fight. Gilbreath said no.

O’Mara asked whether Gilbreath had any evidence contradicting Zimmerman’s statement to Sanford police on the night of the incident that Zimmerman 1) turned toward his car after losing sight of Martin; and 2) that Martin started the fight that led to the shooting. Gilbreath said no.

[Updated at 10:36 a.m. ET] A prosecuting attorney is now questioning state attorney’s investigator Dale Gilbreath, after Zimmerman’s attorney took issue with wording in a probable cause affidavit that Gilbreath had signed. Gilbreath is one of the investigators in the Martin shooting case.

Like O’Mara, the prosecuting attorney is asking Gilbreath about the affidavit, and about evidence that Gilbreath collected. The general thrust of the questioning is designed to bolster the affidavit’s credibility, after O’Mara questioned word choices in the affidavit.

Gilbreath testified he has reviewed other evidence documents other than what has been discussed in the hearing. The prosecutor asked Gilbreath whether Martin had a right to be in the neighborhood – Gilbreath said yes. Gilbreath also was asked if there was no evidence that Martin was committing any crime, and again Gilbreath said yes.

[Updated at 10:28 a.m. ET] O’Mara still is questioning state attorney’s investigator Dale Gilbreath about the way that the probable cause affidavit – which supported the second-degree murder charge – was written.

O’Mara is now taking issue with a line that says Zimmerman “disregarded” a police dispatcher. On the tape that has been released to the public, Zimmerman indicated that he was following Martin, and the dispatcher said that authorities didn’t need Zimmerman to do that.

O’Mara, through his questioning of Gilbreath, is basically suggesting that “disregarded” was the wrong word, because Zimmerman did not hang up with the dispatcher, and therefore did not disregard him.

O’Mara also is taking issue with the affidavit saying that Zimmerman “confronted” Martin. O’Mara is contending that Gilbreath has offered no evidence that Zimmerman confronted Martin, and that other, less antagonistic words, should have been used since Gilbreath had no evidence that Zimmerman confronted him. Such words, O’Mara said, would be “came up to,” or “spoke with.”

[Updated at 10:19 a.m. ET] O’Mara, while questioning state attorney’s investigator Dale Gilbreath, is now taking issue with other language choices in the probable cause affidavit.

O’Mara has noted that the only two quotes in the affidavit from Zimmerman – taken from a police call that Zimmerman made to notify police that he had seen a suspicious person – are of Zimmerman using expletives. O’Mara asked why – out of everything Zimmerman said – only those two quotes were included in the affidavit.

Gilbreath responded that he didn’t type the affidavit. O’Mara pointed out that Gilbreath swore to it, and Gilbreath agreed that he had.

[Updated at 10:14 a.m. ET] O’Mara, while questioning state attorney’s investigator Dale Gilbreath, has taken issue with the word “profiled” in the probable cause affidavit supporting the second-degree murder charge.

The affidavit, which Gilbreath had signed, says that Zimmerman profiled Martin. O’Mara asked why the affidavit says profiled, rather than “noticed” or “saw.” Gilbreath said he couldn’t remember who wrote the word, saying it was a collaborative document.

[Updated at 10:09 a.m. ET] O’Mara has called Dale Gilbreath, an investigator with the state attorney’s office, to the stand. Gilbreath is one of the investigators in the Martin shooting case.

Gilbreath has indicated that he didn’t expect to testify today.

[Updated at 10:05 a.m. ET] O’Mara asked Zimmerman’s mother whether she has come to know her son as someone who comes to the defense of people. She said yes.

She said he has stood up for children and homeless people in and around his community. She also testified that he had been a mentor for two African American children.

[Updated at 10:04 a.m. ET] O’Mara asked Zimmerman’s mother about Zimmerman’s previous charge of battery against a law enforcement officer. She said that Zimmerman was involved in an altercation with a plainclothes ATF agent because he was coming to the defense of a friend, who was being roughed up. The officer didn’t identify himself as a law enforcement officer, she said.

[Updated at 10:02 a.m. ET] Zimmerman’s mother, life his father and wife earlier this morning, said that should Zimmerman be released on bond, his location and the places where he would be allowed to go should be kept secret, because he and the family have received threats.

[Updated at 9:53 a.m. ET] O’Mara has now called Zimmerman’s mother to the phone.

[Updated at 9:51 a.m. ET] Now being questioned by O’Mara, Zimmerman’s father testified about Zimmerman’s appearance after the February 26 shooting. The father said Zimmerman’s face was swollen “quite a bit,” had a protective cover over his nose, and had two vertical gashes on the back of his head.

According to an Orlando Sentinel story later confirmed by Sanford police, Zimmerman told authorities that after he called 911 about a suspicious person (later identified as Martin), and after he briefly lost track of Martin, the teen approached him. After the two exchange words, Zimmerman said, he reached for his cell phone, and then Martin punched him in the nose. Zimmerman said Martin pinned him to the ground and began slamming his head into the sidewalk.

[Updated at 9:47 a.m. ET] The prosecution is asking Zimmerman’s father about Zimmerman’s previous charge of battery against a law enforcement officer, basically having the father acknowledge that he knows Zimmerman faced that charge. Like the exchange that the prosecution had with Zimmerman’s wife a few minutes ago, they went over the fact that Zimmerman took anger management classes as a result of that charge, which was reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor.

[Updated at 9:41 a.m. ET] O’Mara is asking Zimmerman’s father about his financial ability to help post bond. The father, who said he was retired, said he and his wife have some savings, but very little. He said he had a mortgaged home, and that he was willing to secure the home as part of a bond arrangement.

[Updated at 9:39 a.m. ET] O’Mara is now questioning Zimmerman’s father, Robert Zimmerman Sr., who, like Zimmerman’s wife, is testifying by phone. A notary public has sworn Robert Zimmerman in.

[Updated at 9:36 a.m. ET] O’Mara questioned Zimmerman’s wife about the previous allegations against Zimmerman – including a charge of battery on a law enforcement officer and an altercation with a woman – that the prosecuting attorney brought up. Through questioning, Zimmerman’s wife testified that the battery charge was reduced to a misdemeanor through a pretrial diversion program in which he took anger management classes, and that she believes he completed those classes. She also testified that in the altercation with the woman, Zimmerman was not arrested, and that the woman attacked Zimmerman and drew blood, and that as a result, Zimmerman got an injunction against that woman.

[Updated at 9:30 a.m. ET] The prosecuting attorney summed up the previous allegations – including the charge of battery on a law enforcement officer – and then asked Zimmerman’s wife whether she still believes Zimmerman isn’t a danger to the community. “Absolutely he is not a violent person,” nor is he a threat to the community, she responded.

[Updated at 9:24 a.m. ET] The prosecution is now questioning Zimmerman’s wife about her assertion that Zimmerman poses no danger to the community. The prosecuting attorney is pointing out that Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder, and that Zimmerman is accused of a violent act.

The prosecuting attorney also is asking Zimmerman’s wife about his previous brushes with the law, including a charge of battery of a law enforcement officer. He also brought up a woman’s previous allegations that the woman and Zimmerman were in an altercation – Zimmerman’s wife answered that she is aware that Zimmerman needed to defend himself from an attack by the woman, that the woman drew blood, and that Zimmerman filed for a protective order because of the incident. The prosecutor is asking her whether she is aware of those charges and allegations in the past, and she said she is.

[Updated at 9:20 a.m. ET] Zimmerman’s wife said she fears for Zimmeran’s safety and the safety of their family, and that is part of the reason why she is testifying by phone.

Asked if she believes Zimmerman is a danger to society, she said no. She said she has “no concerns whatsoever” about him.

[Updated at 9:18 a.m. ET] O’Mara is asking Zimmerman’s wife about the family’s financial ability to post bond. O’Mara is saying that Zimmerman is indigent; Zimmerman’s wife said that she has talked to other family members about scraping up everything they could in anticipation of posting bond.

[Updated at 9:15 a.m. ET] With Zimmerman’s wife on speakerphone, O’Mara has begun asking her questions. Asked if she would do everything in her power to ensure that Zimmerman – should he be granted bail – return to court when he is required to do so, she said yes. And she said she would contact the court if she lost contact with him.

[Updated at 9:11 a.m. ET] The court has called Zimmerman’s wife on the phone. A notary public is with Mrs. Zimmerman and is swearing her in.

[Updated at 9:08 a.m. ET] Lester has begun the proceeding. After the attorneys identified themselves to the judge, O’Mara kicked off the bond request and told the judge that witnesses are available by phone. The court is calling those witnesses now. As we noted earlier, Zimmerman’s family has offered to give testimony by phone.

[Updated at 9:04 a.m. ET] Zimmerman, wearing a dark gray suit, white shirt and light gray tie, has entered the courtroom and has seated himself next to O’Mara.

[Updated at 9:00 a.m. ET] Martin’s parents are, indeed, in the courtroom, and they’ve taken their seats. O’Mara, Zimmerman’s attorney, also is standing the courtroom, waiting for the proceeding to begin.

[Updated at 8:59 a.m. ET] Check out this piece on why evidence in the case may come up in the bond hearing. The prosecutor, Corey, has the burden of showing why bond should not be set or that it should be high. The burden is referred to as “proof of guilt is evident or presumption of guilt is great.” Corey would have to convince Lester that a jury would convict Zimmerman.

[Updated at 8:55 a.m. ET] The bond hearing is expected to begin in minutes. Martin’s parents are expected to be at the hearing, and this would be the first time that they and Zimmerman are in the same room, CNN’s Martin Savidge tells us from the site.

O’Mara filed a motion that asks the court to allow Zimmerman’s family members to provide testimony at the bond hearing by telephone. The state attorney’s office did not object.

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Austin Texas Police Officer Trespassing On Private Property Kills Innocent Dog

April 18, 2012

AUSTIN, TEXAS – A Texas man claims that his beloved dog Cisco was shot point blank by a police officer who responded to a call at the wrong address.

Michael Paxton, 40, said he and his Australian cattle dog Cisco were relaxing and playing Frisbee in his Austin backyard on Saturday afternoon when he decided to go get something from his truck in the driveway.

As he approached his truck, he said he saw something from the corner of his eye and looked up to see a police officer who immediately drew his weapon and told Paxton to put his hands up.

“He had a Taser. He had pepper spray. I don’t understand why, in broad daylight, he pulled a gun on me. I wasn’t running. I wasn’t hiding,” Paxton told ABCNews.com today. “I was just saying, ‘I live here.’ I was panicking. I was afraid for my life.”

Paxton said he heard Cisco, who weighed about 50 pounds, barking and coming towards him from the backyard.

“I said, ‘Don’t shoot him. Don’t shoot my dog. He won’t bite you.’ But he shot him, just like that. It all happened in under 30 seconds,” Paxton said. “There was no attack on the officer other than barking and challenging him.”

Austin Police Cpl. Anthony Hipolito told ABCNews. com that the officer did respond to the wrong address, but it was the address provided by the 911 call. The call came from the house next to Paxton’s.

Hipolito said that dashcam footage shows the dog barking and attacking the officer.

“The officer was basically in retreat and asked the owner to grab the dog,” Hipolito said. “He was unable to and the dog continued to attack and that’s when the officer discharged his firearm.”

An apology was issued at the scene, according to Hipolito, but Paxton said no one apologized to him.

“Officers have to do everything they can to protect themselves, up to and including the use of deadly force,” Hipolito said. “It’s something that we don’t ever want to do. To shoot and kill an animal is very unfortunate and tragic. The officer is distraught and did not want to do it, but at the same time, he had to protect himself.”

As a shocked and horrified Paxton stared down at his dog’s lifeless body, he said he was confused when the officer started asking him if he had a girlfriend.

“I was saying, ‘You just killed my dog. I can’t believe you just killed my dog. What is going on?'” Paxton recalled.

Paxton said the officer said he was responding to a domestic issue report of a man choking a woman. Paxton does not have a girlfriend and believes the report came from his neighbor’s house.

Paxton said the officer did not apologize and when his sergeant arrived, he was unsympathetic and told Paxton the officer was within his right to shoot the dog. He said he has not heard from the police since the incident.

“I was in shock for probably almost 24 hours,” Paxton said, choking up. “I wasn’t crying at that point, but when I picked my dog up out of the driveway, I lost it.”

Paxton’s friends started a Facebook page called “Justice for Cisco” that has nearly 14,000 supporters. Hundreds of people have left messages of support, outrage and anger.

“How heartbreaking and so uncalled for. Tears just fall for the fallen. So very sorry for your lost over a mistaken address,” one supporter wrote.

Another wrote: “How dare any officer make a mistake & not apologize? If that were a citizen they would be made to apologize immediately. A life was taken & even though some might look at it only being a dog; it was somebody’s pet that they loved dearly.”

“The only thing that has brought me comfort is the response and outpouring of emotion for him,” Paxton said. “I’m sure he heard the yelling. He’s a dog. This is his territory. He’s going to be territorial to some extent. To me, it’s pretty typical dog behavior. He’s not a viscious dog. He was a good boy. He was a real good boy.”

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90 Shots Fired By Los Angeles California Police Officers At Unarmed Motorist

April 12, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – Eight Los Angeles police officers fired more than 90 rounds at an unarmed 19-year-old man who had led them on a high speed freeway pursuit and called 911 to threaten them with a gun, authorities said.

The shooting played out on live television after Abdul Arian refused to pull over when police tried to stop him for erratic driving. He led police on a chase onto the 101 Freeway, where he stopped in dramatic fashion — turning his car and stopping across eastbound lanes.

He jumped out of the car and ran. Then he turned and appeared to run backwards. Police said he assumed a “shooting stance” and appeared to raise his arms and appear to point a weapon, prompting them to open fire.

No gun was found at the scene, but police released statements Arian made to a 911 dispatcher in which he claims he has a weapon and makes it clear that he’s not afraid to use it.

“I have a gun,” Arian said.

“I’ve been arrested before for possession of destructive devices; I’m not afraid of the cops.”

He also said: “If they pull their guns, I’m going to have to pull my gun out on them.”

According to a news release, the dispatcher pleaded with Arian to surrender peacefully, saying, “I don’t want you to hurt yourself.”

Arian responded with expletives and a threat: “… these police, they’re going to get hurt.”

The department’s force investigation division kept the freeway closed all night as they collected evidence and conducted interviews. Department officials will review several factors related to the incident, including communication tactics and whether the large number of rounds fired endangered other freeway motorists.

No breakdowns were available about how many shots each officer fired.

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Miami NBC Producer Fired After Altering 911 Audio Tape That Made Zimmerman Sound Like He Was Racially Profiling Dead Druggie Trayvon Martin

April 7, 2012

NEW YORK – The controversy erupted after “Today” aired a segment that made shooter George Zimmerman sound as though he was racially profiling the 17-year-old black youth.

NBC News has fired the producer it deemed most responsible for the airing of a selectively edited 911 call placed by George Zimmerman the night he killed Trayvon Martin.
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Sources at NBC who asked not to be identified confirmed a New York Times story saying that a Miami-based producer was fired Thursday, though the sources refused to identify the former employee.

The offending segment aired on NBC’s Today show March 27 but went widely unnoticed until it was highlighted by conservative outlets such as the Media Research Center and Breitbart.com.

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Two days after the Today gaffe, Sean Hannity ran a segment about NBC’s manipulation of the 911 call on his Fox News Channel show. The story went viral when the Drudge Report linked to a Hollywood Reporter story about the growing controversy last week.

In the original 911 call, Zimmerman is heard describing Martin as such: “This guy looks like he’s up to no good. Or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around, looking about.”

The dispatcher then asks: “OK, and this guy – is he white, black or Hispanic?”

“He looks black,” Zimmerman responds.

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The version NBC ran, though, was much shorter and did not include the question posed by the 911 operator.

“This guy looks like he’s up to no good. He looks black,” Zimmerman is heard saying in NBC’s edited version.

The difference is significant, since activists have been claiming that Zimmerman had racially profiled Martin. Critics have argued that NBC set out to purposely advance that narrative by condensing the 911 tape to make it appear that Zimmerman’s motivation for assuming Martin was “up to no good” was based on his skin color.

NBC announced Saturday that it had launched an investigation into the matter, and on Tuesday it apologized for its “error” and said it had completed its inquiry.

“We will be taking the necessary steps to prevent this from happening in the future and apologize to our viewers,” NBC said Tuesday.

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Finally: New York City Police Detective Fired And Three Others Forced To Resign After Shooting And Killing 23 Year Old Sean Bell Outside Nightclub In 2006

March 25, 2012

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - A New York police detective has been fired and three other officers forced to resign over the 2006 shooting death of a 23-year-old man outside a Queens nightclub, authorities said.

The disciplinary action went into effect late Friday after Police Commissioner Ray Kelly accepted the ruling of a police department administrative trial of the officers involved in the shooting death of Sean Bell.

Detectives Gescard Isnora, Marc Cooper, and Michael Oliver were acquitted of criminal charges in April 2008, but the three men, along with Lt. Gary Napoli, Detective Paul Headley, and Officer Michael Carey faced a an administrative trial investigating if the officers had acted improperly.

“There was nothing in the record to warrant overturning the decision of the department’s trial judge,” NYPD Deputy Commissioner Paul Browne said of Kelly’s ruling.

Isnora, who fired the first shots that killed Bell, was fired, effective immediately, according to police. Oliver, Napoli and Cooper forfeited all time and leave balances and were forced to retire while Headley received a letter of instructions and re-training in tactics. Carey was cleared of wrongdoing, police said.

Bell and friends Joseph Guzman and Trent Benefield were shot after an altercation with plainclothes detectives outside a Queens nightclub where Bell’s bachelor party was held on the night before his wedding. Bell died at the scene, and Guzman and Benefield were seriously wounded.

Accounts of the incident varied. Undercover officers, who were investigating the club for prostitution allegations, said they identified themselves as police, but witnesses and the wounded men said they did not.

The detectives said they believed at least one of the men had a gun, but no gun was found. And one of the officers said that Bell, instead of obeying his command to stop, hit him with his vehicle.

The incident quickly became a touchstone for those who believe police — in New York and elsewhere — have a record of excessive force, particularly against black men. Bell was African-American, as were the two men wounded and two of the three police officers.

The officers fired 50 shots in just a few seconds.

Oliver fired his gun 31 times that night, pausing to reload his weapon, while Isnora fired 11 times and Cooper, whose leg was brushed by Bell’s moving car, fired four times, police said.

The shooting sparked street protests, and Mayor Michael Bloomberg called it “inexplicable” and “unacceptable,” saying “it sounds to me like excessive force was used.”

In July 2010, New York City paid out more than $7 million to the family of Bell and the two other men shot by the officers.

Sanford Rubenstein, who has represented the Bell estate as well as Guzman and Benefield, responded to Kelly’s decision saying, “It was appropriate for the commissioner to follow the recommendation of the trial judge based on the evidence.”

Isnora’s attorney, Philip Krasyk was unavailable for comment Saturday.

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Sanford Florida Police Chief Bill Lee “Steps Down” As Chief Amid Shooting Controversy

March 22, 2012

SANFORD, FLORIDA - Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee announced Thursday he is stepping down “temporarily” as head of the department, which has been criticized for its handling of the fatal shooting last month of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin by a neighborhood watch volunteer.

“I am aware that my role as a leader of this agency has become a distraction from the investigation,” he told reporters. “It is apparent that my involvement in this matter is overshadowing the process. Therefore, I have come to the decision that I must temporarily remove myself from the position.”

He added, “I do this in the hopes of restoring some semblance of calm to the city, which has been in turmoil for several weeks.”

The gesture did not mollify Martin’s parents. “I feel that we need an arrest,” his mother, Sybrina Fulton, told supporters at a rally in Sanford, referring to George Zimmerman, the watch leader who has told police he shot Martin in self defense.

“The temporary step-down of Bill Lee is nothing,” Tracy Martin, Trayvon’s father, told the rally. “We want an arrest, we want a conviction, and we want a sentence for the murder of our son.”

The Rev. Al Sharpton was more strident: “We did not come here for a temporary leave of absence,” he said. “We came for permanent justice — arrest Zimmerman now!”

The president of the NAACP, Benjamin Jealous, said Lee failed to do his job. “The reality is that this chief had probable cause to lock up a man who shot a boy in cold blood — because he shot a boy in cold blood — and he failed to do that,” Jealous said.

Lee’s decision came a day after the city commission voted 3-2 in favor of a nonbinding measure of no confidence.

City Manager Norton Bonaparte said Thursday that he would like an independent review of police action in the wake of the shooting.

Also Thursday, Gov. Rick Scott announced that he was appointing Angela B. Corey of the 4th Judicial Circuit as state attorney in the investigation, replacing Norman Wolfinger.

Did shooter use a racial slur?

Lee’s decision came as Justice Department officials met Thursday with the parents of Martin, who was unarmed when he was shot and killed in an Orlando suburb.

“During the course of this meeting, we listened carefully to the concerns of the family and their representatives,” the Justice Department said in a statement. “Earlier this week, the Department of Justice announced the opening of a parallel investigation into the death of Trayvon Martin. That matter remains open at this time.”

Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division Thomas Perez told reporters in a conference call that the investigation is being carried out in coordination with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Middle District of Florida.

“We’re in the fact-gathering stage and we’re working collaboratively with the state’s attorney’s office and the local authorities to figure out what happened,” he said. “We don’t know what the facts are yet. We’re gathering the facts and as we gather the facts we will then determine whether or not the facts support a prosecution under the civil rights laws that we enforce.”

The meeting was attended by the special agent in charge for the FBI Tampa Division, Steven E. Ibison; U.S. Attorney Robert O’Neill; and Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the U.S. Department of Justice – Civil Rights Division, Roy Austin, Jr.

The case has riveted the nation. Martin’s family asserts that race was a factor in the black teenager’s death.

Martin was shot February 26 while walking to the house of his father’s fiancee after a trip to a convenience store.

Case sparks dialogue on racial inequality

Zimmerman has not been arrested. A police report describes him as white; his family says he is Hispanic and that he has wrongly been described as a racist.

The uproar over Martin’s death has reverberated nationwide with demands for Zimmerman’s arrest and scrutiny of police actions.

More than 1.3 million people have signed a petition on Change.org urging prosecution for Zimmerman. Thursday morning, the petition was getting 1,000 signatures per minute, said Noland Chambliss, communications manager for Change.org.

CNN has made numerous attempts to contact Zimmerman but has been unsuccessful.

A Seminole County grand jury will convene April 10 on the matter, State Attorney Norm Wolfinger said.

Sharpton was planned to lead a rally Thursday night at a church in Sanford, a racially mixed city of about 50,000 people just north of Orlando.

Opinion: Where’s white church outrage over Trayvon Martin?

On Thursday night, Sharpton called for action by authorities. “We want to see Zimmerman in court with handcuffs behind his back charged with the death of this young man Trayvan Martin,” he told thousands of demonstrators who had gathered in Sanford’s Fort Mellon Park.

“We are here tonight to fight for all our children,” said NAACP’s Jealous. “This isn’t an issue about black and white, this is an issue about right and wrong.”

Zimmerman, who was patrolling the neighborhood, saw Martin walking in his gated community. He called 911 and reported what he described as a suspicious person. Moments later, several neighbors called the emergency number to report a commotion outside.

“The time that we heard the whining and then the gunshot, we did not hear any wrestling, no punching, no fighting, nothing to make it sound like there was a fight,” said Mary Cutcher, one of the callers.

Another caller, Selma Mora Lamilla, said she did not hear any altercation, but the teen cried and “whimpered” before the shooting.

Martin’s girlfriend was on the phone with him during the incident and can help prove he was killed “in cold blood,” said Benjamin Crump, the Martin family’s attorney.

The girl connects the dots and “completely blows Zimmerman’s absurd self-defense claim out of the water,” Crump said.

Shortly before he was shot, the teen told his girlfriend that someone was following him and he was trying to get away, according to the lawyer. The girl, who did not want to be identified, said that during the call, she heard Martin ask why the person was following him.

She got the impression there was an altercation in which his cell phone earpiece fell out after he was pushed, and the connection went dead, Crump said. She did not hear gunfire, he said.

Zimmerman attended a four-month law-enforcement program in 2008 at the sheriff’s office, said Kim Cannaday, spokeswoman for the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office.

In his application for the course, Zimmerman wrote: “I hold law enforcement officers in the highest regard and I hope to one day become one.”

Zimmerman’s father, Robert, told a Florida newspaper that the 28-year-old had moved from the area after receiving death threats.

He was a student at Seminole State College, but the college said Thursday that it had “taken the unusual but necessary step this week to withdraw” Zimmerman from enrollment. It cited the high-profile nature of the controversy and said the decision was based on concern for the safety of Zimmerman and the students on campus.

Zimmerman’s family has denied that race played a role, saying he has many minority relatives and friends.

“The portrayal of George Zimmerman in the media, as well as the series of events that led to the tragic shooting, are false and extremely misleading,” his father wrote in a letter published in the Orlando Sentinel. “Unfortunately, some individuals and organizations have used this tragedy to further their own causes and agendas.”

“George is a Spanish-speaking minority with many black family members and friends,” Robert Zimmerman wrote. “He would be the last to discriminate for any reason whatsoever.”

Heated debate has erupted over whether Zimmerman used a racial slur during the 911 call, a recording of which was released this week.

“We didn’t hear it. However, I am not sure what was said,” Sgt. David Morgenstern of the Sanford Police Department said.

“I have listened to the tapes, and I have not heard them use a racial slur,” concurred City Manager Bonaparte.

A top CNN audio engineer enhanced the sound of the 911 call, and several members of CNN’s editorial staff repeatedly reviewed the tape but could reach no consensus on whether Zimmerman used a racial slur.

Whether Zimmerman used such language before shooting Martin is key, according to CNN Senior Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin.

“It’s extremely, extremely significant because the federal government is not allowed to prosecute just your ordinary, everyday murder,” he said. “Two people fighting on the street is not a federal crime. However, if one person shoots another based on racial hostility, racial animus, that does become a federal crime.”

Toobin said that if “very shortly before” the shooting, “Zimmerman used this racial epithet to refer to the person he openly shot, that very much puts it within the FBI’s and the Justice Department’s ambit of a case that they could prosecute.”

Police say they have not charged Zimmerman because they have no evidence to contradict his story that he shot in self-defense.

Florida’s deadly force law, also called “stand your ground,” allows people to meet “force with force” if they believe there is danger of serious harm to themselves or someone else.

The shooting has renewed a debate over a controversial state law and sparked calls for a review. Gov. Scott announced Thursday he will do just that.

“After listening to many concerned citizens in recent days, I will call for a Task Force on Citizen Safety and Protection to investigate how to make sure a tragedy such as this does not occur in the future, while at the same time, protecting the fundamental rights of all of our citizens — especially the right to feel protected and safe in our state,” Scott said in a statement.

The task force will be led by Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll. The Rev. R. B. Holmes, Jr., pastor of the Bethel Missionary Baptist Church in Tallahassee, will serve as vice-chair.

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New York City Police Officers Caught On Video Dirty Dancing With Scantily Clad Women When Shootings Took Place Along Parade Route

September 12, 2011

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – An online video shows some men who appear to be uniformed NYPD officers enjoying the festivities at the West Indian Day Parade. But some are criticizing what the men were doing, especially since some shootings took place during the parade.

The annual West Indian Day parade in Brooklyn, which took place September 5, 2011, is always colorful. It celebrates the culture of the Caribbean islands.

A video has surfaced on a website called worldstarhiphop.com shows what appear to be cops in uniform dirty dancing with scantily clad women who were part of the parade.

Someone at the parade took plenty of video of the officers having a good time. While these officers were having fun gunfire broke out along other portions of the parade route. At least two shootings took place along the route during the parade.

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San Antonio Texas Police Officer Daniel Alvarado Shot And Killed Unarmed 14 Year Old Boy – Troubled Past Includes 12 Warnings And 4 Suspensions – History Of Not Following Orders

May 28, 2011

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS – Shortly after a supervisor told Daniel Alvarado to stay with the victim of a minor assault and not search for the suspect, the school district officer ran into the backyard of a Northwest Side home with his gun drawn.

Moments later, Alvarado fired his weapon, killing an unarmed 14-year-old boy.

The November incident was not the first time the officer had ignored an order, according to records recently obtained by the San Antonio Express-News.

Since 2006, Alvarado’s supervisors at the Northside Independent School District Police Department had reprimanded or counseled him on at least 12 occasions — six for not following orders. In other cases, Alvarado failed to show up for assignments, and his bosses appeared to suspect him of lying.

Alvarado was suspended at least four times, and his supervisors warned of impending termination four times — once even recommending it.

But Alvarado, 46, never was fired. Six months after the death of student Derek Lopez, as an investigation into the shooting continues, the 17-year veteran of the Police Department remains with the school district.

For Denys Lopez Moreno, the teen’s mother, such revelations about Alvarado’s employment have compounded her grief.

“They should’ve taken action a long time ago,” Moreno said through tears. “He never followed orders. What makes you think he can deal with children?”

At school, Lopez was troubled. Expelled from elementary school, he spent years rotating through alternative schools and the county’s juvenile justice academy. He’d been disciplined for possessing drugs, assault and theft, school officials said.

But at home, his family says he was a loving child who would cook for his younger brother and sister and help them with their homework.

Moreno hired an attorney in December to investigate the shooting.

The attorney, Wally Brylak, filed actions in court to force the school district to release records, including Alvarado’s disciplinary history and a dispatch recording. He also subpoenaed witnesses for depositions, some of which contradict Alvarado’s version of events.

Reached by phone, Alvarado declined to discuss the shooting. NISD spokesman Pascual Gonzalez said the officer has been placed on administrative duty since the incident.

The San Antonio Police Department has ruled the case a justified shooting. The Bexar County district attorney’s office still is investigating.

The question of whether the shooting was justified is unrelated to the officer’s history of disobeying orders, Assistant District Attorney Cliff Herberg said. The former is a legal matter; the latter, administrative.

Gonzalez echoed the distinction in a prepared statement.

“We are aware of Officer Alvarado’s work history,” he said. “While there are some documented incidents, it’s important to note that they were administrative in nature, and had nothing to do with student safety.”

But David Klinger, a former police officer who’s now a professor of criminology and an expert in the use of deadly force, was surprised by Alvarado’s disciplinary history.

“It sounds like they knew this guy was a problem,” Klinger said. “If someone’s insubordinate in a bunch of circumstances, it’s logical to believe they’ll be insubordinate in an important circumstance.”

He added, “Mercifully, from what I know, these are rare. Most of the time when an officer has a problem following an order or doing their job, they get counseled so they learn how to do their job.

“If they don’t, at some point they’re terminated.”

‘Stay with the victim’

Recorded in depositions, witnesses’ recollections offer a closer look at the Nov. 12 incident.

About 4:30 p.m., at Vista West Drive and Hunt Lane, a 13-year-old student from the Bexar County Juvenile Justice Academy was talking on a cell phone at a bus stop when Lopez, one of his classmates, punched him in the face.

“He just hit me once,” the boy said in his deposition. “It wasn’t a fight. It was nothing.”

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Jacksonville Florida Police Shot Two Bail Agents, Killing One, Moments After Other Officers Helped Them

May 28, 2011

JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA – A mask, a shotgun and gloves — that’s what a Jacksonville police officer saw on a man early Tuesday behind a St. Nicholas apartment when officers responded to a home invasion call there.

What the officer didn’t realize was that the masked man was one of three bail bondsmen another group of officers had helped at the same Mayfair Village complex minutes earlier. In the confusion, two of the bondsmen were shot, with one dead and one critical.

The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office hasn’t announced many details of the shooting at the complex at 3539 Beach Blvd., so the bondsmen’s identities and company are unknown.

More: Updated information to this story

At a dawn briefing at the scene, Sheriff’s Office Director John Hartley said police got a call for help from the bondsmen just before 2 a.m. to serve a warrant for a driver’s license and motor vehicle tag issue. They got no answer to their knocks and officers left, although the bondsmen apparently stayed and at least one put on a ski mask and was armed with a shotgun.

Police dispatchers soon got a call from a woman in the apartment, saying she saw “armed individuals … dressed all in black” outside, according to Hartley. Different officers were sent as the woman told dispatchers someone was trying to kick in her door.

That upgraded the call to an armed home invasion, prompting officers to take a “tactical approach” with two carrying AR-15 semi-automatic rifles, Hartley said. Officer Jason Bailey saw the masked man with a shotgun behind one building and shot him, then fired multiple times at a second man who ran up, Hartley said.

He said the man who was killed didn’t look like a bail bondsman.

“As he [the officer] goes to the back, he encounters a black male with a mask on, with gloves, dressed in black and holding a shotgun,” Hartley said. “He immediately engages him. That suspect is fired upon and is deceased at the scene.”

Linda Braswell, president of the Professional Bail Agents of the United States, said the association’s 14,500 members nationwide guarantee that if they pay a premium up front to let someone out on bond, they will appear in court.

She said it looks like these bail agents were doing their job, but there seems to have been a lot of miscommunication.

“They [police] don’t know what the other officers are responding to,” Braswell said. “… The whole incident is unfortunate. I know bail agents have the right to pursue individuals that have not appeared in court. That is their God-given right.”

Ann Teague, president of the Jacksonville Bail Agents Association and owner of an agency on East Forsyth Street since 1982, said local bondsmen want to understand what happened.

“It is like there were two sets of good people trying to do their job … and something went terribly bad,” Teague said. “… Why didn’t someone not know those were agents out there, and where was the miscommunication?”

Wearing a ski mask isn’t common unless a bail agent’s sole job is to apprehend those who fail to appear in court, she said.

“He might wear a mask like an undercover officer might so people don’t recognize who he is,” Teague said. “I can see it. Do I wear a mask? No. But I am not necessarily out there chasing.”

Braswell said the bondsmen apparently followed proper procedure and notified police when they were going to make an apprehension. A U.S. Supreme Court ruling (Taintor vs. Taylor) gives a bail agent the right to “break and enter” if they are sure it is the bail-jumper’s legal residence, she said.

Residents of the complex said they awoke to the gunfire shortly after 2 a.m. One said he heard someone yell “freeze,” then almost instantly heard a boom but did not see who fired the shot. He said a family in that upstairs apartment had only lived there a short time and that a man who lived there was interviewed by police, then released.

The Sheriff’s Office will have a news conference on the shooting today.

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Fort Worth Texas Police Shoot And Kill Woman Who Had Scissors In Her Own Home

May 27, 2011

FORT WORTH, TEXAS — A woman was shot and killed by police Monday afternoon after she came at an officer with scissors, officials said Tuesday.

Stacey Burris, 46, was taken to John Peter Smith Hospital where she was pronounced dead from multiple gunshot wounds at 8:32 p.m. Monday evening.

Sgt. Pedro Criado, a police spokesman, said officers were dispatched to a suicidal person call in the 1300 block of Country Manor shortly before 8 p.m.

There, a family member told the officer that Burris was making threats to harm herself and family members, Criado said.

An officer had entered the house and was walking along a short, narrow hallway toward the woman’s room when he encountered her standing in the doorway, threatening to stab herself in the throat with a large pair of scissors.

“He kept ordering her to drop them, obviously to no avail,” Criado said.

Criado said a second officer had arrived in the hallway when Burris “suddenly lowered the large pair of scissors toward the first officer and came toward the officer.”

Criado said the officer fired his duty weapon multiple times at the same time that the assist officer deployed his Taser at the woman.

The shooting is under investigation by the department’s major crimes unit, Criado said.

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Los Angeles California Police Officer Jeff Stenroos Pleads Not Guilty After Shooting Himself Outside School, Claiming Car Burglar Did It

May 21, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – A Los Angeles police officer charged with staging a victimization hoax by shooting himself outside a public school pleaded not guilty Friday to a six-count indictment, prosecutors said.

Jeff Stenroos, 30, entered the plea before Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Patricia Schnegg after an indictment was returned a day earlier by a grand jury, said spokeswoman Jane Robison of the Los Angeles district attorney’s office.

Stenroos is on paid administrative leave from the school district, Robison said in a written statement.

The indictment supersedes a felony complaint, which will be dismissed when Stenroos is scheduled to return to court on May 18 for a pretrial hearing, prosecutors said.

Stenroos allegedly faked his own shooting while on duty at El Camino Real High School in Woodland Hills, California, on January 19, Robinson said. His injury was discovered by a person who saw him lying on the ground near his open car door, she said.

Stenroos allegedly told other officers that a car burglary suspect shot him once in the chest as he was patrolling the campus perimeter, prosecutors said.

More than 550 law enforcement officers from throughout Southern California responded and conducted a 10-hour search, shutting down an eight-square-mile area in the San Fernando Valley and keeping students on lockdown in eight campuses, authorities said.

The indictment charges the school police officer with five felony counts, including insurance fraud, workers’ compensation fraud, preparing a false police report, preparing false documentary evidence and planting false evidence; and with one misdemeanor of falsely reporting an emergency, Deputy District Attorney Paul Nunez said in a statement.

The superseding indictment adds two new counts — insurance fraud and planting evidence — and drops a prior charge of perjury, prosecutors said.

The city is seeking $361,289 in restitution from Stenroos, and the Los Angeles Unified School District is seeking $58,000 in medical costs, prosecutors said.

If convicted, Stenroos would face up to five years and eight months in prison, Robison said.

Stenroos, who was treated and released from Northridge Medical Center the day he was shot, is accused of insurance fraud for seeking medical treatment for the injuries, prosecutors said.

The weekend after the shooting, Stenroos checked himself into Henry Mayo Hospital in Santa Clarita for ongoing complaints of pain, prosecutors said.

Police investigators found that Stenroos allegedly created false evidence when he claimed he was shot, authorities said.

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Pleasantville New York Police Officer Aaron Hess Named “Officer Of The Year” After Shooting And Killing Unarmed Negro Student – Bogus Charges Against Other Students Dropped

April 13, 2011

PLEASANTVILLE, NEW YORK – As the investigation continues into the shooting of Danroy “D.J.” Henry, the popular Pace University football player shot by police last year, a police union decided to give the “Officer of the Year” award to the man who gunned him down.

In response to the award, the victim’s family lashed out against the Pleasantville Police Benevolent Association, saying it wasn’t that much of a surprise.

“I’m glad the world gets to see the arrogance we’ve been dealing with since Oct. 17, from the district attorney’s office all the way to the Police Benevolent Association,” said Danroy Henry’s mother, Angella Henry, in a statement Tuesday.

The US Department of Justice is still investigating the circumstances surrounding the Oct. 17 fatal shooting of Henry who was killed outside a Thornwood bar. Officers on the scene claim the student drove his car into Police Officer Aaron Hess and another officer, prompting Hess to open fire.

Friends of Danroy Henry gave a different account, however. Henry’s friend Desmond Hinds told PIX 11 News:

“I remember everything. I was in the backseat of the car, we were in the fire lane, officer came up on the left and banged on DJ’s door, he indicated us to move, DJ followed instruction. He pulled off at a nice normal speed, not speeding, as he turned, I remember the officer on the left comes and jumps out in front of the car, next thing I know with his gun drawn, I see three holes in the windshield (and) the car came to a sudden stop…I saw the bullet holes in the windshield, then i heard DJ yell ‘they shot me! they shot me!”

Four fellow Pace University students were arrested that night after chaos and utter confusion erupted at the scene following the shooting. The students faced numerous criminal charges that were recently dropped as prosecutors ruled the actions taken by the young men was a result of “youthful visceral reactions to the sudden, unexpected shooting of their friend.”

A grand jury also decided not to charge Hess or any of the other officers in the shooting.

“What is the criteria for Police Officer of the Year? Killing an unarmed African-American college student?” said attorney Bonita Zelman, who represented four of Henry’s friends who were arrested that night.

In defense of their choice for the officer of the year, PBA President Matthew Listwan said, “The PBA’s Award is an expression of support for the dignified and professional manner in which Officer Hess has conducted himself throughout this ordeal, and most particularly, the very difficult aftermath of this tragic incident.”

To Danroy Henry’s family, however, the timing of the award was troubling. “It just seems weird to us that they would honor him while he is still under investigation by the Department of Justice,¿ said Angella Henry.

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Off-Duty Kansas City Kansas Police Officer Arrested, Suspended, And Charged With Drunken Shooting Of Nightclub Bouncer

March 6, 2011

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI – Police said they have arrested an off-duty Kansas City, Kan., police officer in connection with the shooting of a bouncer at a Kansas City nightclub late Friday.

Officers said they were called to the 6902 Club on Prospect Avenue just before midnight and found the victim inside the business. He was taken to a hospital with serious injuries, investigators said.

Witnesses said a man who was being escorted out of the club for being drunk and belligerent shot the bouncer twice in the abdomen. Kansas City, Kan., police confirmed that the man is an off-duty officer. They said he had been placed on administrative leave and that the Kansas City, Mo., Police Department would be handling the case.

Another bouncer working at the 6902 Club Friday night told KMBC 9’s Cliff Judy workers didn’t know who the man was or that he was armed. The first line of a sign at the club’s front door specifically bans weapons from being brought inside.

The bouncer declined an on-camera interview, but confirmed that he and the victim kicked the suspect out because he was drunk and acting belligerent. He said he was standing between the suspect and the victim, whom he called a friend.

When the suspect pulled a gun, the bouncer said his friend pushed him out of the way and knocked the suspect to the ground. That’s when the suspect fired.

The man said his friend should survive, despite being shot twice in the stomach.

Saturday evening, chalk in the pavement at 69th and Prospect streets marked where investigators found shell casings.

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Los Angeles California School Police Officer Jeff Stenroos Arrested, Charged After Bogus Police Report Saying He Had Been Shot

January 28, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – Authorities arrested Los Angeles school police Officer Jeff Stenroos on suspicion of filing a false police report after he allegedly admitted to fabricating a story that he had been shot last week in Woodland Hills, according to a senior LAPD official close to the investigation.

The official said investigators are still piecing together how Stenroos pulled off the alleged hoax, which sparked a dragnet that inconvenienced thousands of people after police shut down a large swath of Woodland Hills in search of the supposed gunman.

The source added that Stenroos’ protective vest showed obvious signs of having been struck by a bullet, and the officer also suffered bruising on his chest. Detectives later raised questions about whether the officer shot himself accidentally and then fabricated a story or concocted the whole scenario.

The source declined to say whether additional arrests would be made in the case.

“Obviously, it’s as shocking to us as it is to anyone else,” Steven Zipperman, chief of the Los Angeles Unified School District Police Department, said Thursday night.

Zipperman, who recently left the Los Angeles Police Department, where he had been a captain, said his department is cooperating in the ongoing investigation.

The president of the Los Angeles Police Protective League called the incident an “embarrassment to law enforcement.”

“The law enforcement community is disgusted,” Paul M. Weber said in a statement. “While Mr. Stenroos is a disgrace to his badge, his individual and dangerous actions should not reflect on the hardworking men and women in law enforcement.”

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Los Angles California Police Chief Charlie Beck Heckled And Booed While Trying To Explain Officer’s Third Shooting

September 9, 2010

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – Los Angeles, California, police chief Charlie Beck was booed during a community meeting as protests over an officer-involved fatal shooting continued for the third night on Wednesday.

Beck, along with local lawmakers and community leaders, attended a meeting at a Los Angeles school Wednesday to talk about the shooting that has spurred violent protests.

Beck was greeted with boos and whistles and chants of “justice” as he tried to address the crowd.

“I hope we came to have a discussion,” Beck told the crowd. “Please let’s respect each other. Let’s hear each other speak.”

Beck promised the boisterous crowd “a fair and impartial investigation” into the shooting.

After the meeting, police mobilized on the streets to monitor the protests. On Tuesday, protesters amassed near downtown throwing eggs, fruit and other items at police.

About 200 officers worked to bring the incident under control, said Los Angeles police spokesman Cory Palka.

Police shot bean bag and foam projectiles to disperse the crowd, Palka said. Protesters also threw televisions and parts from air conditioners, according to officials.

“They threw anything they could find,” Palka said.

The protesters also set fires and, at one point, as many as seven fires raged in the area.

The protests were triggered by the weekend shooting of Manuel Jamines, CNN affiliate KTLA reported.

Jamines, 37, was killed Sunday by police after allegedly threatening someone with a knife, according to the affiliate.

Jamines was a Guatemalan laborer, a husband and a father of three, the affiliate reported.

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Omaha Nebraska Police Officer Brian Miller Tried To Kill Shoplifter At Mall

August 29, 2010

OMAHA, NEBRASKA – An Omaha, Neb., police officer opens fire trying to stop a shoplifting at a mall, hitting one of the suspects as she drove away.

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Dumbass Drunk Off-Duty Dallas Texas Police Officer Kelly Beemer Arrested, Suspended, And Charged After Firing Gun In Another Officer’s Squad Car

June 18, 2010

DALLAS, TEXAS – A Dallas police officer is on administrative leave after authorities said she fired off her gun while off-duty in a squad car with at least one on-duty officer.

The call came in at around 11:30 p.m. Wednesday night, which was when police rushed to the scene at Abrams Road and Gaston Avenue and found three officers at the scene.

Police said the incident happened after Kelly Beemer, an off-duty officer who police said had a few drinks, had gotten into a squad car of an on-duty police officer. Beemer allegedly pulled out her service weapon from her holster and fired the gun into the floorboard. Sources said she was belligerent at the time. Part of the incident was captured on audio tape from a dash cam camera.

“You need to stop this [expletive] now,” Beemer can be heard saying on the tape before a gun fires.

“Oh [expletive], Kelly please drop the gun,” an officer in the car said. “Kelly, drop the gun.”

Prior to the incident, video from the dash cam showed two officers holding a stumbling Beemer up by her arms as they walked her towards the squad car. Throughout the drive, authorities said Beemer cried and acted belligerent, believing she was under arrest.

Sources said the on-duty officer driving the squad car was originally called to the bar where Beemer and other officers had been drinking. Prior to being picked up, Beemer was allegedly offered rides from other officers at the bar, and at one point ran and hid from officers, sources said.

Commanders were called to the scene, but did not arrest Beemer at the time, saying she was too drunk to be interviewed. It wasn’t until they viewed the tape that they decided to arrest and charge Beemer.

“We are disappointed in her behavior there,” said First Asst. Chief Charles Cato, Dallas Police Department. “I know I receive calls from friends, relatives who had a little too much to drink and needed a ride home, and all the people I’ve dealt with in that situation were just grateful that someone was willing to come out and pick them up. And so, in Officer Beemer’s conduct, that was certainly a discredit to herself and to the people that were trying to help her. She put them in a really bad situation.”

No officers were injured in the incident.

Beemer was arrested Thursday and charged with firing a weapon inside the city limits. If convicted, Beemer will lose her peace officer’s license. Meanwhile, she has been stripped of her weapon and badge until the investigation is complete. Two other officers are on restrictive duty as police investigate their role in the incident.

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St. Petersburg Florida Police Department Loses Officers Due To Relationship With Teen Girl, Firing Issued Shotgun “Accidentally”, Lying, Cuffing A Child To A Bed

June 3, 2010

ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA – Two officers about to be fired by the St. Petersburg Police Department resigned on Wednesday. Another was reprimanded for cuffing his unruly preteen son to a bed.

One officer quit because he was about to be fired for lying in connection to his relationship with a 17-year-old girl, police said. Another resigned before he was fired for a series of errors, the last of which was accidentally firing his city-issued shotgun.

• Chad McLaren, who resigned Wednesday after 15 months on the job, faced allegations of making “conflicting” and “false” statements to his superiors.

In March, police said, McLaren, 27, started a relationship with a 17-year-old girl. They texted up to 50 times a day, according to an internal report. Police said it was unclear what kind of relationship they were in.

McLaren became involved in disputes the 17-year-old was having with her teen ex-boyfriend and other youths. The ex-boyfriend’s mother complained to the department in April about McLaren.

McLaren was ordered not to have contact with anyone involved in the case. But his superiors said he gave conflicting statements about who he knew and who he contacted. He also ran checks on people using official police databases, the report states. The probationary officer was about to be terminated, police said.

• Officer Adrian Owens resigned Wednesday after 17 months on the force. An internal report states he accidentally fired a shotgun round in the department parking lot while trying to clear the weapon. Owens, 32, had already been disciplined four times, police said, and was on the verge of being fired when he resigned.

• Officer James Griffis Jr., a 20-year veteran, received a temporary written reprimand for cuffing his son in March.

The officer restrained the child, police said, because the boy was disrespectful and unruly. When the child threatened to run away, the father tried to cuff him to the bed, police said. The child flailed his arms, striking the father in the face with the cuffs. The father cuffed the son and called for his mother to come get him.

Prosecutors investigated but decided nothing criminal occurred. The Department of Children and Families determined it was an “isolated incident.” Griffis, 44, used “poor judgment” restraining the child with city equipment, the report states.

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Former Utah State Police Officer Brian Smith Dies After Oxycontin Robbery, Randomly Killing Innocent Dallas Texas Motorists, And Shooting Himself During Standoff With Police

December 25, 2008

DALLAS, TEXAS – A Keller man who is suspected of killing two men during a crime spree Monday has died.

Brian Smith, a former Utah state trooper and the father of five children, died at 6 p.m. at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, a spokesman said.

Smith shot himself early Tuesday after a standoff with police in Garland.

Two days after the bizarre chain of events that led to the fatal shootings in Garland and Dallas, family and friends struggled to understand the actions of Smith.

“When he was here, he was just the best of neighbors. One of the greatest guys I know,” said Cindi Schut, who lived across the street from the Smith family in Herriman, a suburb of Salt Lake City, for three years. “I can’t image him being anything else.”

Two years ago, when Schut’s son, Dallin, was 9, he was assigned to write an essay about a hero. He chose Smith.

Dallin still cherishes the small mahogany box with the governor’s seal that Smith gave him after reading the essay, Schut said. The box was a gift from Gov. Mike Leavitt to Smith, who served as Leavitt’s body guard for several years.

The Smiths have four boys and one girl, Schut said. The oldest is 9, the youngest an infant.

Smith volunteered with Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts in Utah, Schut said. The family was also active in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, she said.

At some point, Smith hurt his back and couldn’t shovel snow, Schut said, so he borrowed their snow blower “and he loved it so much, he would do everybody else’s, too.”

“I want people to know this is not who he is,” Schut said. “Something has happened to change him because he’s not that kind of a person at all.”

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Smith began abusing alcohol and prescription drugs after an on-duty traffic accident, according to a Utah Police Officer Standards and Training investigation report.

Utah Department of Public Safety officials could not provide details Wednesday about when the accident happened or the severity of Smith’s injuries. But in January, he threatened to kill himself after drinking heavily, according to the report.

The incident prompted an investigation that led to Smith surrendering his law enforcement certification in May.

In late March, Smith and his wife bought a $275,000, 3,200-square-foot home on Branchview Court in Keller, according to public records. Friends and colleagues said Smith was excited about a job opportunity in North Texas, but details were scarce.

The family was well-received in the Highland Creek Estates subdivision. Tracie Gates said her children and Smith’s children played together.

Sometimes they would all go over to sit on the stone lion statues that Gates has on either side of her front walkway. Sometimes they would catch frogs and release them into a nearby pond, she said.

Attempts to contact Smith’s relatives were unsuccessful.

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Earlier this month, Southlake police obtained arrest warrants for Smith accusing him of two crimes, said Sgt. Mike Bedrich, a police spokesman.

The first, an aggravated robbery, occurred Dec. 17 in the 600 block of East Farm Road 1709 — also known as Southlake Boulevard — Bedrich said. About midday, a woman sitting in her car in a strip mall parking lot was approached by a male and sprayed with pepper spray or something similar, Bedrich said Wednesday.

The man then reached over the woman and grabbed her purse. Police later obtained surveillance video of the suspect using the victim’s credit cards.

On Monday, a purse was taken from an unoccupied vehicle in the 1500 block of Farm Road 1709, Bedrich said. He declined to specify what evidence linked the crime to Smith.

The arrest warrants remain unserved, Bedrich said Wednesday.

It was later Monday, at 5:25 p.m., when a man who identified himself as Brian Smith robbed a Kroger pharmacy in Garland, police spokesman Joe Harn said.

The man said he was there to refill a prescription for OxyContin, Harn said. He then produced a handgun, jumped over the counter and grabbed the drug before fleeing.

Minutes later, Jorge Lopez, 20 of Rowlett, was fatally shot at an intersection north of Interstate 635 in Garland. Next, shots were fired at an 18-wheeler on I-635 near Jupiter Road, but the driver was not hit. Minutes later, more shots were fired at another 18-wheeler, and driver, William Scott Miller, 42 of Kentucky was killed. Shots were then fired at a third 18-wheeler and the driver was hit by flying glass.

As Dallas County police searched for the rush-hour gunman Monday, Southlake police relayed information that Smith might be in the area, armed and suicidal, driving his Honda CRV.

It remained unclear Wednesday how Southlake authorities got that information, Bedrich said.

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Until the tip from Southlake police, Dallas County authorities had been working with a witness description indicating that the Garland shooter was driving a tan Ford F150 pickup.

About 9 p.m. Monday, Garland police found Smith in the Honda. He did not respond to officers’ orders, and a SWAT team was called in.

Early Tuesday, he shot himself and was taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, police said.

Police are awaiting ballistics tests to compare the bullets from Smith’s vehicle with the other shootings. Dallas police have said early results indicate Smith was the shooter.

On Wednesday, Harn declined to comment on the tests until they are complete but said the results and further investigation could explain whether two different vehicles were involved.

Appeared Here


Former Utah State Police Officer Brian Smith Dies After Oxycontin Robbery, Randomly Killing Innocent Dallas Texas Motorists, And Shooting Himself During Standoff With Police

December 25, 2008

DALLAS, TEXAS – A Keller man who is suspected of killing two men during a crime spree Monday has died.

Brian Smith, a former Utah state trooper and the father of five children, died at 6 p.m. at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, a spokesman said.

Smith shot himself early Tuesday after a standoff with police in Garland.

Two days after the bizarre chain of events that led to the fatal shootings in Garland and Dallas, family and friends struggled to understand the actions of Smith.

“When he was here, he was just the best of neighbors. One of the greatest guys I know,” said Cindi Schut, who lived across the street from the Smith family in Herriman, a suburb of Salt Lake City, for three years. “I can’t image him being anything else.”

Two years ago, when Schut’s son, Dallin, was 9, he was assigned to write an essay about a hero. He chose Smith.

Dallin still cherishes the small mahogany box with the governor’s seal that Smith gave him after reading the essay, Schut said. The box was a gift from Gov. Mike Leavitt to Smith, who served as Leavitt’s body guard for several years.

The Smiths have four boys and one girl, Schut said. The oldest is 9, the youngest an infant.

Smith volunteered with Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts in Utah, Schut said. The family was also active in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, she said.

At some point, Smith hurt his back and couldn’t shovel snow, Schut said, so he borrowed their snow blower “and he loved it so much, he would do everybody else’s, too.”

“I want people to know this is not who he is,” Schut said. “Something has happened to change him because he’s not that kind of a person at all.”

subhede

Smith began abusing alcohol and prescription drugs after an on-duty traffic accident, according to a Utah Police Officer Standards and Training investigation report.

Utah Department of Public Safety officials could not provide details Wednesday about when the accident happened or the severity of Smith’s injuries. But in January, he threatened to kill himself after drinking heavily, according to the report.

The incident prompted an investigation that led to Smith surrendering his law enforcement certification in May.

In late March, Smith and his wife bought a $275,000, 3,200-square-foot home on Branchview Court in Keller, according to public records. Friends and colleagues said Smith was excited about a job opportunity in North Texas, but details were scarce.

The family was well-received in the Highland Creek Estates subdivision. Tracie Gates said her children and Smith’s children played together.

Sometimes they would all go over to sit on the stone lion statues that Gates has on either side of her front walkway. Sometimes they would catch frogs and release them into a nearby pond, she said.

Attempts to contact Smith’s relatives were unsuccessful.

subhede

Earlier this month, Southlake police obtained arrest warrants for Smith accusing him of two crimes, said Sgt. Mike Bedrich, a police spokesman.

The first, an aggravated robbery, occurred Dec. 17 in the 600 block of East Farm Road 1709 — also known as Southlake Boulevard — Bedrich said. About midday, a woman sitting in her car in a strip mall parking lot was approached by a male and sprayed with pepper spray or something similar, Bedrich said Wednesday.

The man then reached over the woman and grabbed her purse. Police later obtained surveillance video of the suspect using the victim’s credit cards.

On Monday, a purse was taken from an unoccupied vehicle in the 1500 block of Farm Road 1709, Bedrich said. He declined to specify what evidence linked the crime to Smith.

The arrest warrants remain unserved, Bedrich said Wednesday.

It was later Monday, at 5:25 p.m., when a man who identified himself as Brian Smith robbed a Kroger pharmacy in Garland, police spokesman Joe Harn said.

The man said he was there to refill a prescription for OxyContin, Harn said. He then produced a handgun, jumped over the counter and grabbed the drug before fleeing.

Minutes later, Jorge Lopez, 20 of Rowlett, was fatally shot at an intersection north of Interstate 635 in Garland. Next, shots were fired at an 18-wheeler on I-635 near Jupiter Road, but the driver was not hit. Minutes later, more shots were fired at another 18-wheeler, and driver, William Scott Miller, 42 of Kentucky was killed. Shots were then fired at a third 18-wheeler and the driver was hit by flying glass.

As Dallas County police searched for the rush-hour gunman Monday, Southlake police relayed information that Smith might be in the area, armed and suicidal, driving his Honda CRV.

It remained unclear Wednesday how Southlake authorities got that information, Bedrich said.

subhede

Until the tip from Southlake police, Dallas County authorities had been working with a witness description indicating that the Garland shooter was driving a tan Ford F150 pickup.

About 9 p.m. Monday, Garland police found Smith in the Honda. He did not respond to officers’ orders, and a SWAT team was called in.

Early Tuesday, he shot himself and was taken to Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, police said.

Police are awaiting ballistics tests to compare the bullets from Smith’s vehicle with the other shootings. Dallas police have said early results indicate Smith was the shooter.

On Wednesday, Harn declined to comment on the tests until they are complete but said the results and further investigation could explain whether two different vehicles were involved.

Appeared Here


Update: Man Suspected In Series Of Dallas Texas Road Shootings Is Former Utah State Police Trooper Brian Smith – Attempted Suicide During Standoff

December 24, 2008

DALLAS, TEXAS – A man suspected in a series of rush-hour shootings near Dallas is a former Utah state trooper wanted on burglary and robbery warrants who apparently shot himself after a standoff with police, authorities said Tuesday.

Brian Smith, 37, killed at least one of the victims of Monday’s shootings, police Lt. Craig Miller said. Investigators linked Smith to a killing in Dallas by matching the bullets found at the standoff, he said.

“We feel safe in saying (Smith) … was the shooter,” Miller said.

Dallas police declined to comment on a second death in neighboring Garland, where the standoff took place, because it was out of their jurisdiction.

Garland police spokesman Joe Harn said his department has not been able to make a definitive connection between Smith and the killing there, but he acknowledged that Smith fit the description of the highway shooter: a balding, 40ish white man.

“We certainly hope it is him,” Harn said. “But we are going to have to see more concrete evidence.”

Two people were shot and killed and another was injured by broken glass in four shootings along or near a Dallas-area highway Monday evening. Police believe the victims were selected at random.

Smith was in critical condition Tuesday night at a Dallas hospital from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Police said he shot himself in the head early Tuesday morning after a brief standoff more than six hours after the shooting spree ended.

Smith had been a Utah state trooper since 1996 but retired in May because of “personal issues,” said Sgt. Jeff Nigbur, a spokesman for the Utah Department of Public Safety.

The crime spree appears to have begun in Garland, where a man police identified as Smith jumped over a pharmacy counter at a grocery store and stole OxyContin pills.

Appeared Here


Update: Man Suspected In Series Of Dallas Texas Road Shootings Is Former Utah State Police Trooper Brian Smith – Attempted Suicide During Standoff

December 24, 2008

DALLAS, TEXAS – A man suspected in a series of rush-hour shootings near Dallas is a former Utah state trooper wanted on burglary and robbery warrants who apparently shot himself after a standoff with police, authorities said Tuesday.

Brian Smith, 37, killed at least one of the victims of Monday’s shootings, police Lt. Craig Miller said. Investigators linked Smith to a killing in Dallas by matching the bullets found at the standoff, he said.

“We feel safe in saying (Smith) … was the shooter,” Miller said.

Dallas police declined to comment on a second death in neighboring Garland, where the standoff took place, because it was out of their jurisdiction.

Garland police spokesman Joe Harn said his department has not been able to make a definitive connection between Smith and the killing there, but he acknowledged that Smith fit the description of the highway shooter: a balding, 40ish white man.

“We certainly hope it is him,” Harn said. “But we are going to have to see more concrete evidence.”

Two people were shot and killed and another was injured by broken glass in four shootings along or near a Dallas-area highway Monday evening. Police believe the victims were selected at random.

Smith was in critical condition Tuesday night at a Dallas hospital from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Police said he shot himself in the head early Tuesday morning after a brief standoff more than six hours after the shooting spree ended.

Smith had been a Utah state trooper since 1996 but retired in May because of “personal issues,” said Sgt. Jeff Nigbur, a spokesman for the Utah Department of Public Safety.

The crime spree appears to have begun in Garland, where a man police identified as Smith jumped over a pharmacy counter at a grocery store and stole OxyContin pills.

Appeared Here


Former Utah Police Officer Brian Smith Does The Right Thing And Attempts Suicide After Four Shootings In Dallas Texas

December 24, 2008

DALLAS, TEXAS – A former Utah policeman is a suspect in at least three of Monday’s four rush-hour shootings near Dallas, Texas, including one of two fatal attacks, police said Tuesday.

The suspect, Brian Smith, tried to commit suicide after the Monday-evening shootings and was in a hospital in serious condition, Dallas police detective Lt. Craig Miller said.

Police used ballistic tests to link Smith, a Utah state police officer for 12 years, to the shootings in which one driver was killed, one was injured by shattered glass and one escaped uninjured, Dallas police detective Lt. Craig Miller said.

Miller said it is unclear if Smith was involved in the other fatal shooting, which was the first attack of the evening.

Four motorists were attacked along a three-mile stretch near and on the LBJ Freeway, about 10 miles northeast of downtown Dallas, on Monday evening, police said.

The first attack, which happened in Garland, Texas, about 5:41 p.m., killed Jorge Lopez. Garland police said Lopez, 20, was sitting in his Nissan at a traffic light when a man in a pickup pulled alongside him and fired shots into his car, killing him.

A few minutes after the Garland shooting and two miles away on LBJ Freeway, a gunman fired at two tractor-trailers.

While one driver escaped injuries, William Scott Miller, 42, of Frankfort, Kentucky, was shot to death behind the wheel of a United Van Lines truck, police said.

“He was going to be traveling home,” Craig Miller said. “He was about to park his rig. He was going to get on a plane to fly to be with his wife and children for the Christmas season and then come back to this location.”

Miller called the truck driver a hero, saying he was able to control his rig before he died — preventing other motorists from being hurt.

The fourth attack came a mile west on LBJ Freeway when gunfire shattered the windshield of another tractor-trailer. The bullets missed the driver, but flying glass caused minor cuts, police said.

Miller said video from the Garland shooting is available, and specialists were trying to enhance it to bring out details. Businesses along the other routes also may have video that will help police, he said.

A friend of Lopez’s said he was “a straight-up good guy, never had problems with anybody, never started anything with anybody.”

“So that’s why this seems so out of the blue,” Lopez’s friend said.

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Former Utah Police Officer Brian Smith Does The Right Thing And Attempts Suicide After Four Shootings In Dallas Texas

December 24, 2008

DALLAS, TEXAS – A former Utah policeman is a suspect in at least three of Monday’s four rush-hour shootings near Dallas, Texas, including one of two fatal attacks, police said Tuesday.

The suspect, Brian Smith, tried to commit suicide after the Monday-evening shootings and was in a hospital in serious condition, Dallas police detective Lt. Craig Miller said.

Police used ballistic tests to link Smith, a Utah state police officer for 12 years, to the shootings in which one driver was killed, one was injured by shattered glass and one escaped uninjured, Dallas police detective Lt. Craig Miller said.

Miller said it is unclear if Smith was involved in the other fatal shooting, which was the first attack of the evening.

Four motorists were attacked along a three-mile stretch near and on the LBJ Freeway, about 10 miles northeast of downtown Dallas, on Monday evening, police said.

The first attack, which happened in Garland, Texas, about 5:41 p.m., killed Jorge Lopez. Garland police said Lopez, 20, was sitting in his Nissan at a traffic light when a man in a pickup pulled alongside him and fired shots into his car, killing him.

A few minutes after the Garland shooting and two miles away on LBJ Freeway, a gunman fired at two tractor-trailers.

While one driver escaped injuries, William Scott Miller, 42, of Frankfort, Kentucky, was shot to death behind the wheel of a United Van Lines truck, police said.

“He was going to be traveling home,” Craig Miller said. “He was about to park his rig. He was going to get on a plane to fly to be with his wife and children for the Christmas season and then come back to this location.”

Miller called the truck driver a hero, saying he was able to control his rig before he died — preventing other motorists from being hurt.

The fourth attack came a mile west on LBJ Freeway when gunfire shattered the windshield of another tractor-trailer. The bullets missed the driver, but flying glass caused minor cuts, police said.

Miller said video from the Garland shooting is available, and specialists were trying to enhance it to bring out details. Businesses along the other routes also may have video that will help police, he said.

A friend of Lopez’s said he was “a straight-up good guy, never had problems with anybody, never started anything with anybody.”

“So that’s why this seems so out of the blue,” Lopez’s friend said.

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