$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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Long Beach Police Raid Medical Marijuana Dispensary, Smashing Surveillance Cameras, Assault Employee, Cause 10’s Of Thousands In Damages As They Trash Business

July 5, 2012

LONG BEACH, CALIFORNIA – A raid on a marijuana dispensary in Long Beach was caught on video showing officers smashing surveillance cameras and stepping on a suspect, moves that prompted accusations against the officers of excessive force.

More than a dozen police raided THC Downtown Collective in the 300 block of Atlantic Boulevard (map) on June 19, officials said. The video was posted to YouTube by user “Long Beach Raids” on July 1. Officials said they learned about the video on July 3.

The two-minute-long video (below) opens to show a man surrendering to police, three of whom surround him while two put him in handcuffs.

One of the officers is seen stepping on volunteer employee Dorian Brooks’ back with both feet before stepping on his neck, with what Brooks described as 300 pounds of pressure.

The video, which was being recorded at an off-site location, then cuts to an officer pointing at the recording camera before another looks up and smashes the lens.

“They noticed there was a camera that was on the wall right above my head, so they proceeded to smash it with a metal rod,” said Brooks, adding that the camera shattered on him. “I wasn’t able to protect myeslf because my hands were cuffed.”

“I felt violated; I felt disrespected,” Brooks said.

The video cuts again and reopens on a man donning a tshirt and backwards baseball cap with what appears to be a badge hanging from his neck. This man, apparently behind the dispensary’s counter, also smashes the recording camera.

Footage from after the raid shows a disheveled room, with portions of the ceiling removed and scattered on the floor, strew with boxes, electrical cables and other objects.

Dispensary employees claim the raid caused tens of thousands of damage, and police took the collective’s ATM and cannabis.

“A thorough review into what occurred during that operation will be conducted once all of the facts have been collected. This is a personnel matter and we are unable to discuss any further details,” Lisa Massacani, with LB police, wrote in a statement.

Police said the dispensary was operating under state compliance, but did not have a city permit.

Five people were arrested in the raid, according to Long Beach police:

Dallas Alexander, 31, of Long Beach, was arrested on suspicion of operating an unpermitted marijuana dispensary, serving as a looking for illegal activity and on an outstanding warrant from another jurisdiction;
Fernando Garcia, 50, and Mario Sanchez, 31, both of Los Angeles, and Landon Alexander, 22 of Long Beach were arrested on suspicion of operating an unpermitted marijuana dispensary and obstruction;
Dorian Brooks, 28, of Long Beach, was arrested on suspicion of operating an unpermitted marijuana dispensary

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Suspended Broward County Florida Deputy Sheriff Brent Wooddell Awaiting Theft And Misconduct Trial Removed Court Ordered GPS Ankle Monitor And Went To Strip Club

June 6, 2012

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA – A suspended Broward Sheriff’s detective under house arrest while facing trial on grand theft, official misconduct and other charges took off his GPS monitor and visited a Pompano Beach strip club, where deputies arrested him Monday night.

Prosecutors had already argued twice to have Brent Wooddell’s $2,000 bond revoked, first after he allegedly sent an intimidating text message to a witness in his case, and again after he was accused of fleeing from the scene of an accident while on his way to a court hearing. Broward Circuit Judge Carlos Rebollo allowed Wooddell to stay out of jail both times.

According to an arrest warrant, Wooddell took off his ankle monitor on Sunday and was told by his pre-trial release officer to turn himself in Monday morning. When he didn’t show, officials demanded his arrest.

Deputies found him Tuesday at 9:20 p.m. at the Cheetah strip club in Pompano Beach. He was in custody at the Broward Main Jail as of Tuesday afternoon.

Wooddell was arrested in September 2011 after a sting operation allegedly caught him in the act of stealing $1,340 from an oxycodone dealer he had just arrested. The dealer was actually an undercover Miami-Dade police officer. According to the Sheriff’s Office, the phony suspect had pills and $7,340 in a blue bag when he was taken into custody, but Wooddell only turned in $6,000 when he got to the Deerfield Beach substation.

Officials said the undercover operation was captured on video and audio recordings.

Wooddell has been suspended without pay pending the outcome of his criminal case.

On his way to a formal arraignment in February, Wooddell’s car crashed into another vehicle on Florida’s Turnpike, according to court records. No one was injured in the crash, but Wooddell didn’t report it for fear of being late to his court date.

Prosecutors didn’t learn about that violation until May, at which point Assistant State Attorney Adriana Alcalde-Padron urged Rebollo to revoke Wooddell’s bond. But Rebollo kept Wooddell under house arrest, ordering the suspended detective to remain at home except when shopping or traveling to and from his job at a Hyundai dealership in Lake Park.

A month earlier, Alcalde-Padron accused Wooddell of sending text messages to a witness in the case. At that time, Rebollo reminded the defendant to avoid contact with witnesses as one of the conditions of his release.

“We have moved to revoke his bond twice,” Alcalde-Padron said Tuesday. “This is his third violation. Hopefully, he will now remain in custody at least until it’s time for his trial.”

In addition to the grand theft and official misconduct charges, Woddell is accused of tampering with evidence, falsifying records and delivery of steroids. If convicted of all charges, he faces more than 30 years in prison.

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Dumbass New Haven Connecticut Police Officer Sgt. Chris Rubino Arrested Woman Who Videotaped An Arrest, Took Her Phone

June 6, 2012

NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT — New Haven police have launched an internal affairs investigation into the arrest of a woman who had been videotaping an officer take a Bridgeport man into custody outside a bar.

Jennifer Gondola’s arrest, first reported by the New Haven Independent newspaper, occurred early Saturday morning outside the Pulse bar.

Gondola told the newspaper she was charged with interfering with police after stuffing the cell phone she used to tape the arrest inside her bra. The phone was confiscated.

Lt. Anthony Duff says the department is investigating whether police Sgt. Chris Rubino violated the department’s rule that allows bystanders to film arrests.

Officer Arpad Tolnay, president of the police union, told the New Haven Register the sergeant concluded the video was evidence and properly seized the phone.

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Murder: Video Shows Fullerton California Police Officers Manuel Ramos, Jay Patrick Cicinelli And At Least 4 Others Brutally Beating Unarmed Homeless Man While He Screamed In Pain And Plead For Help – Died 5 Days Latter

May 8, 2012

FULLERTON, CALIFORNIA – A graphic video played at a hearing Monday to determine whether two California police officers should stand trial in the beating death of a homeless man showed them kicking and punching the mentally ill man as he lay on the ground — screaming in pain and begging for help.

The victim, Kelly Thomas, died five days after the beating on July 5.

Manuel Ramos, a 10-year veteran of the Fullerton, California, police department, is charged with second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter, while Cpl. Jay Patrick Cicinelli faces charges of involuntary manslaughter and felony use of excessive force in the same case.

Both have pleaded not guilty.

The black-and-white video was played during a preliminary hearing for the two officers.

It begins with Thomas — a 37-year-old homeless man with schizophrenia — sitting and being told by Ramos to put his feet out and hands on his knees.

The officers were responding to a call about a homeless man looking into car windows and pulling on handles of parked cars.

In the video, Thomas is slow to cooperate.

Ramos then tells him: “You see my fists? They’re getting ready to f— you up.”

Thomas, who is unarmed and shirtless, stands and another officer walks over. They hit him with their batons and hold him on the ground as he begs for help.

“Ok, I’m sorry, dude. I’m sorry!” he screams. At one point, Thomas says he can’t breathe. The officers tell him to lie on his stomach, put his hands behind his back and relax.

“Ok, here, here, dude, please!” he says.

Other officers arrive.

At times, trees block the view of the camera and it’s not always clear who is doing what as officers pile on top of Thomas.

One uses a Taser stun gun.

Thomas cries out for help and. toward the end of the beating, for his father: “Dad! Help me. Help me. Help me, dad.”

His voice gets softer and trails off.

By the end of the video, he is lying in a pool of blood as the officers wonder out loud what to do next.

One can be heard saying: “We ran out of options so I got to the end of my Taser and I … smashed his face to hell.”

Thomas suffered brain injuries, facial fractures, rib fractures, and extensive bruising and abrasions, according to prosecutors.

The Orange County coroner listed his manner of death as a homicide and said he died after having his chest compressed, leaving him unable to breathe.

The FBI is investigating possible civil rights violations in his case.

Six Fullerton officers, including Ramos and Cicinelli, were put on paid leave after his death. The case drew widespread attention to the police department of Fullerton, located about 25 miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles.

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Video Catches Brutal Beating Of Subdued Man By Meriden Connecticut Police Officer Evan Cossette – Police Chief’s Sun – Faces At Least Two Other Brutality Complaints

April 25, 2012

MERIDIAN, CONNECTICUT – A Connecticut police officer has been captured on video throwing several punches at a subdued man on the floor and then proceeding to Taser him while another officer holds him.

The officer, Evan Cossette, who works in Meriden, is being sued by the man, Joey Bryans, after the 30-year old claimed that the video evidence showed police brutality.

The grainy and out of focus video-tape from the early morning of January 23 of this year shows Bryans leaving MidSate Medical Centre for a cigarette.

According to police reports, the hospital staff were worried Bryans might injure himself because he was drunk and contacted Cossette and another Meriden police officer, Mark Nowak

The pair were already at the hospital as part of an unrelated call.

Walking out into the hospital car-lot wearing only a white T-shirt, Bryans is seen to be followed by Cossette and Nowak.

Unfortunately, the camera goes out of focus and moves away from the scene for around 10-12 seconds.

When it returns, Cossette’s right arm can be viewed hitting Bryans at least five times while Nowak holds his legs.

The video then features Cosette reaching into his belt for a Taser and shocking Bryans twice, the first for nine seconds and the second time for four seconds according to police records.

However, the official report of the incident differs from the account seen on the video.
Watched by the hospital security guards the police officers continue to work to subdue Bryan allegedly using excessive force

Watched by the hospital security guards the police officers continue to work to subdue Bryan allegedly using excessive force

Cossette wrote that Bryans was running away from the hospital when he is clearly walking and says that both he and Nowak shouted several verbal commands to Bryans to stop running.

In addition, Cossette reported that Bryans ‘tensed his arms and body up, forming fists maintaining an aggressive fighting posture.’

He also claims that Bryans ‘spun around and engaged him in a physical altercation’ which meant that the pair were ‘forced to bring him to the ground’.

The gap in the grainy and inconclusive video between Nowak first grabbing Bryans to when Cossette is clearly punching him is 12 seconds.

Meaning that the ‘aggressive fighting posture’ by Bryans must have occurred during that time period.

Cossette wrote in his report that the punches had ‘little to no effect’, which forced him to use the Taser

Already under investigation by a federal grand jury, Officer Evan Cossette has had three police brutality complaints made against him in just over a year and received a written warning for one.

However, in this case the Internal Affairs investigator at Meriden police ruled that Cossette had not violated any police procedures.

Bryans’ attorney, Sally A. Roberts, declined to comment at length, saying only that the video ‘speaks for itself.’

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Iowa City Police Seek Help Solving “Fuck Me Silly” Sex Doll Robbery Case – $1000 To Anyone Who Will Snitch About Theft Of $250 Doll

February 8, 2012

IOWA CITY, IOWA – In a bid to capture the armed robber who last month stole a $250 sex doll from an Iowa City adult store, police today released a surveillance photo showing the suspect making off with the item.

Seen above, the image shows the ski mask-clad man carrying the sex doll inside the Romantix Pleasure Palace shop at around 3 AM on January 12.

Before releasing the store surveillance photo, cops pixelated it to obscure explicit images on the box of the “Fuck Me Silly #1” model “mega masturbator.” As previously reported, the stolen 20-pound sex doll is described by its manufacturer as “the most realistic piece of ass you ever fucked…Slap that big round ass and listen to the whack…it sounds and feels just like a real ass!”

According to police, the robber displayed a large hunting knife to a Romantix employee before leaving with the sex doll (the box for which is seen above). Cops described the suspect as a “white male, approximately 5’8″ – 5’10”, 165 lbs.”

In return for information leading to the man’s arrest, Iowa City Area CrimeStoppers is offering an award of up to $1000.

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