Update: Longview Texas Police Officer Aulderson Franklin Jr. Arrested, Suspended, And Charged With Assaulting A Family Member After Choking His Wife

July 18, 2012

LONGVIEW, TEXAS – The City of Longview launches an internal investigation after Officer Aulderson Franklin, Jr. was arrested for choking his wife. CBS 19’s Abby Broyles spoke with people in Longview about the arrest and has the latest on the investigation tonight from the Longview Police Department.

City leaders say Officer Franklin was hired on at the Longview Police Dept back at the end of January, so he’s only been on the job here for about 6 months. News of his arrest spread quickly in the community, and people we spoke with today say they’re shocked and disappointed at what Officer Franklin is accused of.

Residents in Longview are concerned after one its police officers lands on the wrong side of law.

“That kind of rage from a police officer, it does concern me,” Kathy Rowan says, “you think these people are supposed to be protecting us and looking out for us and you know, they’re not really protecting their loved ones.”

Upshur County deputies arrested 42-year old Officer Aulderson Levi Franklin, Jr. late Saturday night. He’s charged with assault of a family member for impeding breath, a third degree felony.

Deputies arrested Franklin after a domestic disturbance call from a home in Big Sandy. Arrest records show witnesses told investigators Franklin was trying to choke his wife.

“No man should go after a woman like that, I don’t care if they’re married 100 years,” Rowan said.

Officer Franklin is now free on a $5,000 bond. He’s on paid administrative leave, and the City of Longview has launched an internal investigation.

“Our staff will look at the situation, look at what all the circumstances are and determine what will happen moving forward whether that’s whatever discipline take place, or what happens to his employment,” City spokesman Shawn Hara said.

Upshur County District Attorney Billy Byrd tells CBS 19 the case has not reached his office yet. We’re told the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department is still investigating, and until that investigation is complete, city leaders say they won’t be able to make a long-term decision as far as Franklin’s future here as an officer in Longview.

CBS19 is working to speak with officer Franklin but he has not gotten back in touch with us.

If convicted, Franklin faces a two to ten year sentence. No word yet on his court date.

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Video Shows Owasso Police Officer Lt. Mike Denton’s Brutal And Violent Attack On Handcuffed Man – Douchebag Was Fired And Then Reinstated By Arbitrator

July 11, 2012

OWASSO, OKLAHOMA – KRMG News has obtained the lapel-camera video shot in June last year when Owasso Police Lieutenant Mike Denton gave 3 elbows to the face of a man being arrested for public intoxication.

The City of Owasso fired Lt. Denton in November 2011, citing ‘excessive force’ during the arrest of Bryan Scott Spradlin of Collinsville. Spradlin later pleaded guilty to the public intoxication charge.

KRMG News filed a Freedom of Information Act request for the video from the Owasso Police Department in November 2011. That video was finally released Monday.

In a grievance hearing in March, an arbitrator reduced Denton’s firing to a written reprimand and reinstated the officer to the Owasso Police Department.

On June 30, 2011, Bryan Spradlin was arrested at an apartment complex in Owasso for public intoxication.

Officers went to the apartment on a disturbance call.

The arrest was videotaped from a camera on the officer’s lapel.

The clip shows Spradlin refusing to stand up while in handcuffs.

Lt. Mike Denton then drags him into jail.

You can hear Lt. Denton say, “Are you ready to walk? Can you get up and walk? You want to act like a big boy?”

Next, you can see Lt. Denton throwing three elbows into the suspect’s face.

The officer was fired for using excessive force.

Chief Dan Yancey spoke to KRMG in November.

Yancey said he was concerned about excessive force after viewing the video.

He said, “There’s a definite line, drawn in the sand if you will, as to what officers have the right to do, and if you cross that line intentionally, I think there should be severe consequences.”

In March, an arbitrator rehired Lt. Denton and gave him a written warning.

KRMG News made a Freedom of Information request for the video.

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New York City Police Officer Kofi Nsafoah Arrested And Charged After Choking His Wife

July 11, 2012

BROOKLYN, NEW YORK – An off-duty city cop was arrested early Tuesday for allegedly choking his wife, police said.

Kofi Nsafoah, 36, was taken into custody at 2:30 a.m. after an apparent fight with his wife, cops said.

Police said the altercation happened in the vicinity of the 61st Precinct, which polices Sheepshead Bay, Gravesend, Kings Highway, Homecrest, Madison, Manhattan Beach and Gerritsen Beach. They declined to provide a specific address.

It was unclear how seriously the woman was injured.

Nsafoah was charged with criminal obstruction of breathing, police said.

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Three On One: Video Catches San Antonio Texas Police Officers Beating Handcuffed Pregnant Woman

July 11, 2012

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS – Did San Antonio Police Officers use excessive force on a pregnant woman? That’s what the Department is looking into tonight, after a Fox San Antonio viewer shot video of three officers holding down a pregnant woman. One of those officers hits her repeatedly.

It was the sound of a woman screaming that caught Lorenzo Rios’s attention. “All I heard was her yelling to get off me, I heard her yell I’m pregnant,” said Rios. So, he started to record this video with his cell phone. “She was already cuffed and they started to beat her, which I don’t think was right. It was pretty messed up. She was already down and pretty small compared to the other officers.”

According to a police report, 21-year-old Destiny Rios was arrested for prostitution and resisting arrest. She’s 5’1, 126 pounds and pregnant. “She did look pregnant, she looked about two months pregnant,” said Rios. It was the 4th of July around 5:30 p.m., when an officer saw Rios walking on Culebra. When he stopped to ask her name, he found out she had an active warrant for prostitution. When he started to arrest her, she fought back.

“Size makes no difference, it’s the amount of fight in the person,” said Chief William McManus, San Antonio Police. Fox San Antonio gave the police department a copy of the video, but the Chief says he didn’t see it. When we offered to show him, he said he didn’t need to see it. “What’s on the video is in my understanding is what the officer reported.” But, we found inconsistencies. We counted eight hits in the video, but the police report only says there were four or five. “Whether it was four or five or whether it was 8, it’s really irrelevant if the officer felt he needed to strike her 8 times in order to get her to comply and put handcuffs on, then that’s how many times he struck her,” said McManus.

Rios also told police she used heroin the day before. The man behind the camera says no one deserves this. “She didn’t need to be beaten like that like, she was small, she was already cuffed, she wasn’t resisting but for them to come and jump on her and punch her not once, but 9 times that was pretty messed up,” said Rios.

The police report says once handcuffs were on her, she was not struck. The Chief says he’s looking into all of this, but right now all of the officers are still on regular duty. Rios suffered minor injuries. Tonight, she’s still in the Bexar County Jail.

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US Taxpayers Taking A Hit For $40 Million Communications Link Between American Torture Prison In Cuba And United States

July 8, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Navy base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, will be getting an estimated $40 million communications upgrade, signaling it will continue its mission of holding top suspected terrorists and as a major humanitarian aid base in the region.

The base, also known as Gitmo, will upgrade its limited satellite communications system to an underwater fiber optic line that will stretch from the base to the coast of Florida, according to Pentagon spokesman Army Lt. Col. Todd Breasseale.

The United States has alerted the Cuban government that it intends on starting the project this summer with a survey ship operating off the eastern coast of the country evaluating the expected route, but actual work of installing the cable will being within a couple of years.

The outdated satellite communications system was overburdened with the military court hearing the cases of the top 9/11 plotters and other war-on-terrorism suspects, as well as the ongoing detention operations.

Upgrading to a fiber optic line allows much more bandwidth and a more secure line during bad weather that can hamper satellite communications, according to Breasseale.

While close to the United States, the base is still remote in southeastern Cuba, and is often in the path of severe weather. It generally houses about 6,000 troops and civilians.

“The project will bring the base online with communication technology equal to that of the Department of Defense footprint around the world,” Breasseale said.

While the 45-square-mile base has become well known for holding terrorism suspects since early 2002, the base has been controlled by the United States for over 100 years, though its role has shrunk considerably over the decades.

But the United States also uses it as a major contingency base for humanitarian aid operations, most recently using it as a staging ground to bring relief into earthquake-stricken Haiti in 2010. In the 1990s the base was also used to house refugees from Haitian political unrest.

With large swaths of open land, the base is prepared to take on thousands who could be housed in tents, according to Breasseale.

“The need for humanitarian aid is not going away, and this base is needed for that,” Breasseale said.

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$1 Million Claim Filed Against Long Beach California Police After Brutally Assaulting Employee During Medical Marijuana Dispensary Raid – Police Smashed Surveillance Cameras And Caused 10’s Of Thousands Of Dollars In Damage

July 6, 2012

LONG BEACH, CALIFORNIA – Lawyers for a medical marijuana dispensary worker wounded in a police raid at a Long Beach shop filed a claim on Thursday seeking $1 million in damages from the city of Long Beach.

The claim, a precursor to a lawsuit, alleges that a police raid of a pot shop June 19 was illegal and that the officers involved used excessive force.

“In terms of the excessive force claim, we will investigate that aspect of it,” said Long Beach City Attorney Robert E. Shannon.

Shannon said that the Long Beach Police Department is also mulling whether to open a criminal investigation into the activities of the medical marijuana dispensary and police are considering an internal investigation into the officers’ conduct during the raid, Shannon said.

The claim, filed Thursday with the Long Beach City Clerk’s office, alleges officers injured a volunteer employee, violated his civil rights, and violated the state’s disabled persons act.

It also alleges officers “engaged in conduct that violated various provisions of the state and federal constitutions,” the claim alleges.

The claim stems from a YouTube video that shows officers smashing surveillance cameras and stepping on a suspect at THC Downtown Collective in the 300 block of Atlantic Boulevard. The video was posted by user “Long Beach Raids” on July 1. Officials said they learned about the video on July 3.

An advocate for medical marijuana dispensary owners and workers criticized the officers’ conduct.

“That behavior is so blatant it cannot be the first time,” said Steven Downing, a retired Los Angeles Police Department deputy chief and current board member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.”It was arrogant. It was unnecessary and it was brutal.”

The claim seeks damages in excess $1 million for medical treatment and mental counseling.

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Washington DC Police Using Pointless Firearm Registration To Harass, Arrest, And Jail Servicemen – US Army Veteran Brutalized, Home Searched Without A Warrant, Property Seized Without, Home Destroyed, And Jailed On 10 Bogus Charges

May 23, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – The Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) seems to have it out for our military. The department is using the city’s pointless firearm registration mandate to harass, arrest and jail servicemen.

Army 1st Sergeant Matthew Corrigan was woken in the middle of the night, forced out of his home, arrested, had his home ransacked, had his guns seized and was thrown in jail — where he was lost in the prison system for two weeks — all because the District refuses to recognize the meaning of the Second Amendment. This week, the city dropped all charges against Sgt. Corrigan, but the damage done to this reservist cannot be so easily erased.

This story will describe how Sgt. Corrigan went from sleeping at home at night to arrested. Subsequent installments of the series will cover the home raid without a warrant, the long-term imprisonment and the coverup by MPD.

Sgt. Corrigan, 35, and his attorney Richard Gardiner appeared before Judge Michael Ryan at D.C. Superior Court on Monday. The District’s assistant attorney general moved to dismiss all ten charges against him – three for unregistered firearms and seven for possession of ammunition in different calibers.

Wearing a blue suit and black-rimmed glasses, Sgt. Corrigan looked unemotional after the hearing that ended his two-year ordeal. Outside the courtroom, I asked him how he felt. I expected some vindication or, at least, relief. Instead, he was weighed down by the losses and trauma of the experience. “For court, I put on a face showing I’m okay,” he said. “Overall, this has broken me.”

Nighttime Raid

Sgt. Corrigan was asleep in rented apartment on North Capitol Street in the Stonghold neighborhood at 4am on Feb. 3, 2010, when he heard his name being called on a bullhorn from outside. There was a heavy snow falling — the first storm of what became known that winter as “snowmageddon.”

Flood lights glared through the front and back windows and doors of his English basement apartment. “Matt Corrigan, We’re here to help you, Matt,” the voice said in the darkness. An experienced combat soldier, he assumed a bunker mentality and hid in the dark room.

dogHe turned on his cell phone and a police detective immediately phoned and said, “Matt, don’t you think this is a good time to walk your dog?” The SWAT team outside could obviously see the 11-year old pit bull, Matrix, a rescue from dog fighting, who had been with Sgt. Corrigan since graduate school in Northern California.

“I’ll come to the window and show myself,” he offered on the phone. Sgt. Corrigan still didn’t know why his house was surrounded, but he knew exactly what he should do in such situations. “I’ve been on the other end of that rifle trying to get someone out,” he explained.

He said that the cop on the phone answered that, “‘It’s gone beyond that now.’”

Iraq

Sgt. Corrigan volunteered to serve for a year in Iraq from 2005-2006. He’s an Army reservist in a drill sergeant unit based in Alexandria. By day, he is a statistician at the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

His unit would generally never be needed overseas, but the Army need people to train the Iraqi soldiers. So, the then-drill sergeant signed up for the deployment because he thought it would be good for his military career.

iraqThe reservist and nine other soldiers were embedded with the Iraqi army to train them to be a functional military force. He was stationed in Fallujah during the transition from the assault on the city to allowing the civilian population to move back in and through the elections.

The team was spread out over 4 or 5 locations so that each Iraqi company could have a very different tasking from the Marines who operated that battlespace.

Among other duties, the sergeant would go out on patrol with the Iraqis, clear routes of IEDs, prevent new IEDs from being placed in the urban areas. During patrols, he would search for any detail in the street that had changed in a way that would indicate a possible new explosive, then he would scan the horizon for the enemy with the detonator.

He says that in his daily life now, he’s still looking for the “IED triggerman.” He was awarded the bronze star.

His twelve months of service ended without much time to re-adjust to civilian life. “In 20 days, I went from being shot at to sitting in a cube wearing a suit,” he recalled of the difficult transition returning to his statistician job. “Your body is in America. Your head is in Iraq.”

Night of the arrest

Sgt. Corrigan never fully recovered emotionally from the combat and continues to have vivid nightmares that gave him insomnia. The Veterans’ Affairs (VA) hospital gave him medication to help him sleep, but by early 2010, he started having new dreams.

bronze“I kept seeing my own dead body with my friend and family standing over me, looking disappointed. Sometimes I died in Iraq, sometimes here,” he recalled. “I didn’t sleep for four or five nights in a row.”

At the same time, he was tasked to prepare a mental health manual for his soldiers on mild traumatic brain injury and suicide prevention. On a pamphlet from VA hospital, he saw a link to a website VeteransCrisisLine.net. On it, he found a number for a counseling hotline, which turned out to be a suicide hotline.

When he called it a little before midnight, he asked to speak to someone about the bad dreams and sleeplessness. The woman asked for his name, address, phone number, whether he was active duty, if he was using alcohol or drugs, and his unit. Then she asked if he had any firearms.

Sgt. Corrigan had three personal guns for protection and for competition in his home. He had recently moved from Virginia to the District, but had not registered them because he thought the process was too convoluted and risky.

“It didn’t sound right that I could just carry my guns to the police station and not get arrested.” He recalled thinking that, “I’ll just wait for them to clear up this complicated process and do it then.”

The only places in the United States that require citizens to register every single gun they own with the government are Hawaii, New York City, Chicago and the District.

After the police raided his home that night, they took the three firearms: a Sig 226 in .40 caliber, a Smith and Wesson 5904 in 9mm and a M1A Springfield Armory Scout Squad rifle.

courtAt the Monday hearing at D.C. Superior Court, Mr. Gardiner petitioned the court to return the property. It took two years for the firearms’ attorney’s other active-duty veteran client, Lt. Augustine Kim, to get his guns returned.

Judge Ryan gave the attorney general’s office three days to file a document in opposition to the release, and he said he will make a decision by the end of this week.

When asked by the VA hospital counselor on the night of Feb. 2 whether he owned guns, Sgt. Corrigan answered truthfully.

The woman answering the suicide hotline would not listen to him. “I told her, ‘I don’t have the gun out.’ And she kept saying, ‘Put down the gun.’ She talked like I had the gun in one hand and my cell phone in the other.”

“She insisted I repeat the words, ‘The guns are down,’” he said. “I finally got agitated and said, ‘I shouldn’t have called’ and hung up.” Then, Sgt. Corrigan took a prescribed sleeping pill and went to bed.

Attack and Surrender

After being jolted awake four hours later, Sgt. Corrigan agreed to exit his home to show that he was fine. As he walked out his front door, he turned the lock on the knob so that it would lock when he closed it. He had a stow-away key in a box outside.

When he opened the door, he saw about 25 officers in full body armor and kevlar helmets, carrying M4 assault weapons. SWAT and explosive ordinance disposal teams were on all sides. Streets were barricaded for blocks. “They were prepared to be blown up or attacked,” Sgt. Corrigan remembered. Experienced in combat, he knew how to surrender with the least chance of being hurt. He put his hands over his head and spun around so they could clearly see he was unarmed.

matt2In the dark, snowy night, the Iraq vet was an easy target. “I looked down at saw 10 jiggly red dots all over my chest,” he said, appearing afraid at the memory. “I crumbled.”

Out of the corner of his eye, he saw one officer ready to tackle him, so he dropped to his knees and crossed his ankles to demonstrate complete defenselessness.

“They immediately zip-tied me tighter than I would have been allowed to zip-tie an Iraqi,” Sgt. Corrigan said, pulling up his dress shirt cuff to show his wrist. “We had to check to fit two fingers between the tie and the Iraqi’s wrist so we weren’t cutting off circulation. They tied mine so tight that they hurt.”

Mr. Gardiner, the defense attorney, still questions whether this initial arrest was legal, since there were no charges against him at this point. The only thing the police had was the word of a VA operator saying he claimed to be a gun owner. He was not read his rights. MPD spokesman, Gwendolyn Crump, would not comment on the case.

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