Crazed Lowell Massachusetts Police Charge Man With Assault With A Dangerous Weapon – French Fries

June 25, 2012

LOWELL, MASSACHUSETTS – A Lowell man is free following his arrest on charges he threw hot French fries at his young stepdaughter.

As a condition of his release, 26-year-old James Hackett must stay away from the girl.

Police say Hackett and his wife began arguing after leaving a McDonald’s. When his stepdaughter chimed in, Hackett allegedly threw the fries in her face.

She was not seriously hurt.

Hackett, who will be back in court in August, pleaded not guilty to assault with a dangerous weapon: French fries.

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T-Mobile Gives Man Zimmerman’s Old Phone Number – Dead Druggie’s Supporters No Different Than He Was, Calling Day And Night Thinking They Are Threatening Zimmerman’s Life

June 8, 2012

FLORIDA – At age 49, Junior Alexander Guy got his first cell phone last month. The calls started immediately.

Strangers called at all hours. Some were insulting. Others angry. Sometimes, they threatened him.

“You murderer!”

“You deserve to die!”

By Day 2 he figured out what was going on: T-Mobile had given him the phone number formerly used by George Zimmerman, the Neighborhood Watch volunteer who fatally shot Trayvon Martin in February.

The number —407-435-2400 — was the one Zimmerman spelled out to a police dispatcher in a recorded call the night of the shooting that has since been widely circulated by news organizations and is available on the Internet.

Guy, who works at an Orlando wastewater plant, said his phone rang around the clock.

“At 2 o’clock, 3 o’clock in the morning I kept getting these,” he said.

He estimates he received 70 threatening calls.

He has moved out of his home and relocated his mother, who had lived with him, to a different location, he said.

“I was not only afraid for my life, I was afraid for my mother’s,” he said.

He got the phone May 7. On May 16, he turned the phone over to Orlando lawyer Robert Trimble. Since then, the phone has been in Trimble’s safe.

The lawyer has asked T-Mobile to pay damages. He would not say how much.

T-Mobile has said no, according to its top lawyer, Aram Meade.

“They’re not looking to provide my client any compensation for what they’ve exposed him to,” Trimble complained.

Meade said his company had offered to change the number, something that happened Thursday, the same day Trimble requested it.

Also Thursday, the company retired the number, said Glenn Zaccara, a company spokesman. And it provided an account credit and waived an early termination fee, he wrote in an email.

Guy had never had a cell phone, in part, because he got out of prison last year after serving 19 years on a cocaine trafficking charge. It was his third time in state prison, according to Florida Department of Corrections records.

Criminal history or no criminal history, Trimble said, Guy was given Zimmerman’s old phone number, and evidence supports his claim that he was being pummeled by harassing calls.

“I’m asking them for a fair and reasonable sum,” Trimble said.

The 28-year-old Zimmerman is currently in the Seminole County Jail, awaiting trial on a second-degree murder charge.

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Prosecutors Drop Bogus “Littering” Charge Filed By Cleveland Ohio Police – Man Dropped A Dollar Bill

June 2, 2012

CLEVELAND, OHIO – Cleveland prosecutors have dropped their case against a man who was ticketed for littering when he dropped a dollar he was attempting to give a disabled person.

Chief City Prosecutor Jonathan Cudnik dropped the case Thursday against John Davis in Judge Angela Stoke’s courtroom, saying the city does not consider money to be trash, WJW, Cleveland, reported Thursday.

Davis said he was relieved by the decision, as the $344 littering ticket was approaching $500 with court costs factored in and he would lose additional money from missing work and attorney’s fees.

Davis said his attorney, Marcus Sidoti, will donate all fees to the Different Needz Foundation charity.

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See Also:
Dumbass Cleveland Ohio Police Officer Tickets Man Who Dropped Money On The Ground While Handing It To A Disabled Man – Could Cost $500 For Dropping Dollar Bill

Doomed Case: Sanford Florida Prosecutors Bow To Pressure And File Bogus 2nd Degree Murder Charge Against George Zimmerman For Killing Worthless Druggie In Self Defense

April 12, 2012

SANFORD, FLORIDA – Prosecutors filed a second-degree murder charge against neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman for the killing of unarmed teen Trayvon Martin, but they will have a hard time securing a conviction, experts say.

That’s because the prosecution will have to prove Zimmerman intentionally went after Martin instead of shooting him in self-defense, refute arguments that a Florida law empowered him to use deadly force and get past a judge’s ruling at a pretrial hearing.

Zimmerman, 28, who turned himself in at a county jail Wednesday after prosecutor Angela Corey announced the charge, was to appear before a magistrate Thursday and plead not guilty in the Feb. 26 shooting of the 17-year-old that set off a nationwide debate about racial profiling and the rights to self-defense.

“He is concerned about getting a fair trial and a fair presentation,” his attorney, Mark O’Mara said. “He is a client who has a lot of hatred focused on him. I’m hoping the hatred settles down … he has the right to his own safety and the case being tried before a judge and jury.”

Legal experts said Corey chose a tough route with the murder charge, which could send Zimmerman to prison for life if he’s convicted, over manslaughter, which usually carries 15-year prison terms and covers reckless or negligent killings.

The prosecutors must prove Zimmerman’s shooting of Martin was rooted in hatred or ill will and counter his claims that he shot Martin to protect himself while patrolling his gated community in the Orlando suburb of Sanford. Zimmerman’s lawyers would only have to prove by a preponderance of evidence — a relatively low legal standard — that he acted in self-defense at a pretrial hearing to prevent the case from going to trial.

There’s a “high likelihood it could be dismissed by the judge even before the jury gets to hear the case,” Florida defense attorney Richard Hornsby said.

Corey announced the charges Wednesday after an extraordinary 45-day campaign for Zimmerman’s arrest, led by Martin’s parents and civil rights activists, including the Rev. Al Sharpton and the Rev. Jesse Jackson. Protesters wore hooded sweatshirts like the one Martin had on the night of the shooting. The debate reached all the way to the White House, where President Barack Obama observed last month: “If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.”

Corey would not discuss how she reconciled conflicting accounts of the shooting by Zimmerman, witnesses and phone recordings that indicated Martin thought Zimmerman was following him.

“We do not prosecute by public pressure or by petition. We prosecute based on the facts on any given case as well as the laws of the state of Florida,” Corey said.

Martin’s parents expressed relief over the decision to prosecute the person who shot their son.

“The question I would really like to ask him is, if he could look into Trayvon’s eyes and see how innocent he was, would he have then pulled the trigger? Or would he have just let him go on home?” said his father, Tracy Martin.

Many attorneys said they had expected the prosecutor to opt for the lesser charge of manslaughter. The most severe homicide charge, first-degree murder, is subject to the death penalty in Florida and requires premeditation — something all sides agreed was not present in this case.

Million Hoodie March

“I predicted manslaughter, so I’m a little surprised,” said Michael Seigel, a former federal prosecutor who now teaches law at the University of Florida. “But she has more facts than I do.”

O’Mara, Zimmerman’s attorney, said his client would plead not guilty and invoke Florida’s so-called “stand your ground” law, which gives people wide latitude to use deadly force rather than retreat during a fight.

The confrontation took place in a gated community where Martin was staying with his father and his father’s fiancée. Martin was walking back in the rain from a convenience store when Zimmerman spotted him and called 911. He followed the teenager despite being told not to by a police dispatcher and the two got into a struggle.

Zimmerman told police Martin punched him in the nose, knocking him down, and then began banging the volunteer’s head on the sidewalk. Zimmerman said he shot Martin in fear for his life. Sanford police took Zimmerman, whose father is white and whose mother is Hispanic, into custody the night of the shooting but released him without charging him.

A judge could dismiss the charge based on the “stand your ground” law, legal experts said. But some experts say the judge will also be under tremendous pressure to let the case go forward.

“Judges are not likely to take that out of the hands of the jury,” said Florida defense attorney Randy Reep.

Other attorneys weren’t surprised that Corey went for the maximum.

“Prosecutors look for leverage. They’ll typically overcharge knowing that gives them wiggle room for plea discussions,” said Derek Byrd, incoming president of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. “She knows that she could offer him manslaughter at some point or get in front of a jury that could split the verdict and agree on a lesser offense.”

Corey wouldn’t discuss how she arrived at the charges or disclose other details of her investigation. The prosecutor in Jacksonville was appointed to handle the case by Republican Gov. Rick Scott after the local prosecutor disqualified himself.

The U.S. Justice Department’s civil rights division is conducting its own civil rights investigation.

Tensions had risen in Sanford, a town of 50,000 outside Orlando. Someone shot up an unoccupied police car Tuesday outside the neighborhood where Martin was killed. Outside of Sanford City Hall on Wednesday, Stacy Davis, who is black, said the arrest “is not a black or white thing for me. It’s a right or wrong thing.”

In Washington, Martin’s family pleaded for calm in response to the decision. But Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, clasped hands and smiled in relief when she heard Corey utter the words “second-degree murder” on television.

“We wanted an arrest and we got it,” Fulton said later. “Thank you Lord, Thank you, Jesus.”

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Drunk Former Kanawha County West Virginia Police Officer Matthew Allan Leavitt Found Passed Out Behild Wheel On Exit Ramp – Previously Served Federal Prison Time After Beating Man And Falsely Arresting His Victim’s Wife

March 6, 2012

CHARLESTON, WEST VIRGINIA – A former eastern Kanawha County police officer was arrested after police found him passed out over the wheel of his SUV blocking an exit ramp in Dunbar.

Dunbar Patrolman J.A. Payne was dispatched early Sunday to the Interstate 64 eastbound exit ramp at Dunbar after motorists reported the vehicle.

Payne found a black Nissan SUV sitting in the middle of the ramp and identified the driver as Matthew Allan Leavitt, 34, of Charleston, according to a complaint filed in Kanawha Magistrate Court. Leavitt was passed out and slumped over the wheel with the vehicle, which was running and shifted into drive.

The officer tried to wake Leavitt. Leavitt came to but could not answer any of the officer’s questions and kept slumping back over the wheel. Payne wrote in the complaint that he could smell alcohol coming from Leavitt’s face.

Paramedics went to the scene to check Leavitt out. Leavitt was unsteady on his feet and his speech was slow and slurred, the complaint said.

Leavitt was cleared to perform field sobriety tests but refused them. He refused a breath test and a blood test.

Leavitt told Payne he had consumed “several” alcoholic beverages and that he was “just trying to make it home,” the complaint said.

Leavitt pleaded guilty in federal court in 2009 to violating a couple’s rights while working as a police officer in Montgomery in 2008. He admitted to beating Twan Reynolds, a black man, with a slapjack and arrested Reynolds’s wife, Lauren Santella-Reynolds, who is white, on a charge of driving under the influence without probable cause.

He was sentenced in September 2009 to two years in federal prison and two years supervised release.

Leavitt was arrested Sunday for driving under the influence, failure to submit a breath test and obstructing the road. He was released from South Central Regional Jail on bond.

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With Nothing Better To Do In Hurricane Aftermath, Philadelphia Pennsylvania Police Arrested Men On Bogus Charges For Rafting In Floodwaters

August 29, 2011

PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA – Row, row, row your boat, just not down Main Street in Manayunk. That’s the message police are sending after arresting two men who used a raft as an alternate means of transportation down the flooded street Sunday.

CBS 3 reporter Dray Clark caught up with Pete and Pat, best friends and roommates from Manayunk, who paddled their way down the water covered street.

“I thought, Main Street floods a lot, go get a raft and float down,” said Pat, who admitted the idea was his.

“We thought it would be a good time and it turns out it is,” said Pete.

Minutes later, Philadelphia police stopped the men and hauled them away in handcuffs.

When Dray asked why the men were being arrested, he said the officers replied, “for lack of common sense.”

No charges were filed against the boaters.

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Montgomery County Maryland Sends Out Speed Camera Citations, Citing Wrong Law

May 3, 2011

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND — A Maryland attorney found a loophole that helped him beat a speed camera ticket.

James Liskow of Bowie received a ticket late last year from a speed camera on Georgia Avenue in Montgomery County.

Liskow told WBAL-AM’s Bill Vanko that his argument was based on the fact that what he received in the mail dealt with a wrong section of the law. In essence, a typo concerning the letters ‘B’ and ‘D’ resulted in the ticket being tossed out in court.

He said the citation should have included a signed certificate attesting the camera passed its annual calibration check, among other items.

Asked by Vanko if other ticket recipients could make the same argument, Liskow said, “It’s the same statute, I don’t see why they couldn’t.”

Use the links above to read more from Vanko and to listen to the interview with Liskow.

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