Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Attorney Gary Parker-Legal Malpractice Complaint

Expert Witness Report in support of a Bar complaint 




Janice Wells after being pepper sprayed

Case Description and Timeline: Janice Wells is a 59-year-old grandmother and elementary school teacher. On April 26, 2010, Ms. Wells called the Richland Georgia Police Department requesting assistance. According to police reports Ms. Wells reported a possible burglary at her home. Officer Tim Murphy of the Richland Police Department responded to the call. According to his report officer Murphy contacted Ms. Wells at her residence. Ms. wells was being assisted by a friend named John Robinson. when the officer arrived Ms. wells told Robinson he could go home. The officer states in his report that he is the one that ordered Robinson to leave. Janice Wells disputes this claim in the officers report. She stated that the officer was behaving irrationally and seemed fixated on the identity and personal information of her friend John Robinson.

After Robinson departed officer Murphy demanded that Wells explain her relationship to Robinson. Janice Wells declined to talk to the officer. Wells told the officer that her relationship was personal. She told the officer she no longer required his assistance and she began walking back towards her home. 

According to his police report officer Murphy attempted to place Wells under arrest for obstruction. Without provocation Officer Murphy pepper sprayed Janice Wells in the face. Wells states that she ran away after being pepper sprayed. Moments later, Murphy tackled Wells. Both fell to the ground. A second officer Ryan Smith arrived as back up. Moments later Smith tasered Janice Wells repeatedly though there is no evidence she was offering any significant resistance. It appeared she was being tasered to force her to get up or to allow them to move her into the police vehicle. Wells can be heard on tape moaning and screaming in pain.

Approximately 20 minutes after her arrest Sheriff Larry Jones ordered Wells released. All charges were dropped against Janice Wells. Sheriff Larry Jones fired Officer Timothy Murphy. Ms. Wells was severely injured and traumatized by the violent assault.

In 2010 Janice Wells was contacted by attorney Gary Parker. Parker agreed to take Ms. Well’s case after being paid a retainer. On April 26, 2010 attorney Gary Parker filed a federal civil rights lawsuit on behalf of Janice Wells against officers Ryan Smith and Timothy Murphy. Federal court records show that lawyers working in defense of officers Murphy and Smith filed for motions to dismiss on September 21, 2012. Attorney Parker did not file a response. On November 23, 2012 the defendant's motion to dismiss was granted. Attorney Parker did not appeal the ruling nor did he notify his client according to our investigation. On March 18, 2013 attorneys representing the officers filed a motion for summary judgment. Once again, Attorney Parker did not respond to the motion. 

In March, Attorney Parker requested more money from Ms. Wells. He told her he needed an additional $500 to keep the case going. Two weeks later, on April 2, 2013, Gary Parker wrote a letter to Janice Wells notifying her that he was withdrawing from the case due to medical reasons, stress and an inability to perform his duties as her attorney. Strangely the letter is not dated. We recovered the actual date from the timestamp from the post office. 




We believe that the letter was not dated deliberately. Attorney Parker was aware that when the letter was sent on April 2, a summary judgment had already been entered against Ms. Wells. 

In the April 2, 2013 letter Attorney Parker assured Ms. Wells that he had notified the court of his intention to withdraw as legal counsel in her case. He also stated in the same letter that he had asked for a 45 day stay of the case so that she could find new counsel. The court record shows that no such notifications were made by attorney Parker on behalf of Ms. Wells. There is no request for an extension nor is there a notification of the attorney’s decision to withdraw. Federal Judge Land dismissed the case on May 2, 2013 citing the plaintiff’s failure to respond to the defendant’s motions and rulings in the case. When attorney Parker told Ms. Wells that he had asked for an extension the case had already been decided by summary judgment. 

On May 5, 2013 in response to multiple telephone calls from Ms. Wells attorney Parker wrote a 2nd letter. In that letter Attorney Parker chastises Ms. Wells for continuing her case in the face of evidence that she is a fornicator and an adulterer. Attorney Parker advises Ms. Wells to abandon the case because "intelligent white jurors will not believe her." Attorney Parker advises Ms. Wells that God is punishing her for her sins and that she will not be rewarded for bringing a false case to the court. In a final bizarre admonishment attorney Parker advises Ms. Wells that white people are upset with the election of Pres. Obama. 

Attorney Gary Parker May 2. 2013 Letter:







Evidence reviewed 

40 Documents and PDF files
6 Videos
30 legal filings 
Interviews with witnesses included the plaintiff Janice wells, the arresting officer Ryan Smith, Sheriff Jones Attorney Gary Parker. We attempted to locate Timothy Murphy who now works for a furniture store in Albany Georgia without success. 

Opinions and Conclusions

It is my opinion to a reasonable degree of professional certainty that there was no basis for the use of force against Mrs. Wells. Moreover, the officer's conduct in arresting Ms. Wells is not supported by applicable standards for an arrest. Ms. Wells had no obligation to speak with officer Murphy after the suspect was ordered off of her property. Ms.Wells was within her rights to return to her home unmolested. Her original legal claim based on police misconduct appears to be valid.

Attorney misconduct

Just as there is evidence that the police officers engaged in misconduct there is also evidence that attorney Gary Parker engaged in outright fraud and chicanery. Attorney Parker openly lied about his legal efforts on behalf of Miss Wells. He sought to intimidate her with crude and bazaar religious rants. He also attempted to exploit what he perceived as political naïveté on the part of his client. Attorney Parker even abused the title of a federal judge in his attempt to intimidate his client. Parker noted that the federal judge would not believe Wells because he is a white southerner. This is something Federal Judge Land will surely find offensive.

Motions submitted by defense attorneys were not responded to by Attorney Parker. His failure to act has severely damaged his client's chances of achieving justice for serious misconduct by 2 police officers who were fired for their misdeeds. It will also cost Ms. Wells financially. Ms. Wells has recently received a bill from the Court totaling nearly $6000.00. My review of the evidence and court records demonstrate that Attorney Gary Parker essentially did nothing after filing the original complaint in federal court. And, it is evident that he attempted to cover-up his misconduct with a series of strategically timed letters filled with threats.

It is my opinion that the attorney committed substantial misconduct which had a detrimental impact on his clients legal interests. I respectfully submit this complaint on behalf of Ms. Janice Wells. 

Diop Kamau

Evidence exhibits: 
Fax Letter by Policeabuse.com







Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department Taser death

Victim reported that her son was tasered to death by Charlotte police officers. Police Abuse.Com is investigating

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Unprofessional conduct complaint

Complainant reports that the police officer was rude in handling a dispute with a neighbor

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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Criminal Negligence in the Louisville Police Department


Salisa Luster Rape Survivor

   Rape and its emotional and psychological trauma is a long lasting nightmare for victims and their families. The family and friends of Salisa Luster, who was raped and brutally beaten in Louisville, Kentucky, five-years-ago, are no exception. 

   Since then, the rapist's escape from justice, abetted by a Metro Louisville police officer's gross negligence at the crime scene and blatant misconduct--and a comedy of errors and transparent untruths implicating other officers--have further traumatized Luster and angered and bewildered her family and close friends.

   Just as painful, they say, was the failure of the most culpable officer, Rick Woolridge, to arrest, question, detain or label as a person of interest "an unidentified black man," who was the only suspect at the scene. Increasing their pain was the alleged indifference of then Chief Robert C. White, who had the authority to open an official investigation into Woolridge's misconduct, but declined to do so.

   Had Luster been a white woman, some observers say, Woolridge's policing would doubtless have been aggressive.  Luster is African American, as is the suspected rapist.

   Others were struck by the alleged indifference of an African American police chief toward a black woman's plight.  Still others expressed outrage that Chief White, in refusing to use his power to investigate the misconduct of Woolridge--a white officer--also appeared to obstruct justice in defense of a seemingly cold, callous policeman.

   Salisa's mother Cheryl Ellis's efforts to obtain justice for her daughter
      
   Luster's nightmare began on the afternoon of April 29, 2008: A maintenance man employed by East Chase Apartments, owned by Sentinel Real Estate Corporation--came to repair the toilet, but, after fixing it, returned, hours later. 

   While Luster slept on a sofa, he used a pass key (only maintenance men and management executives had access to them), to open the door.  Undetected, he entered her apartment.  After creeping in, he began raping her.

   When Luster awoke, the maintenance man, whose uniform she remembered, was choking and raping her. Soon he was hitting her on her head "so hard I could barely think,"  she said.  Then the rapist, in a bizarre twist, according to Ellis, "used a solution to wash her hair, took several pieces of clothing from her closet, drenched them in water and threw them on the floor."

   The rapist, Ellis told Policeabuse.com, did not leave the apartment after attacking Luster, but stayed through the night.  Luster, only semi-conscious after the attack, was beaten so severely that her left eye was shut by it, both eyes were blackened and blood clots had formed in both of them.  Despite her battered condition, Luster managed to call 911 and say, "there's a strange man in my apartment; I'm having trouble breathing," yet the operator who received  her plea failed to alert paramedics. 

   In the morning, when Luster didn't answer her telephone or report to work, five young colleagues, all women, went to her apartment to ensure that she "was okay."  Luster's car was parked in front of her apartment building, so they believed she had not left, but was still inside her unit.

   Without a key to Luster's door, they were forced to wait outside.


Louisville Officer Rick Wooldridge Ret.


   Officer Woolridge, a 20-year Metro Louisville veteran, was dispatched to the scene and arrived soon after the young women, but would not allow them to go inside with him.

   After "less than six minutes inside" Luster's apartment, according to Ellis, Woolridge left and locked the door behind him, so the five young women had no access to the apartment.

   No one knows what Woolridge said to the suspected rapist, if anything, but Ellis believes the "unidentified black man" told Woolridge that he and Luster had had "a lover's spat," which Woolridge officer apparently believed or deemed inconsequential.   

   Although Luster's face bore all the earmarks of a brutal beating, Woolridge didn't call emergency medical assistance.  Nor did he file a police report or record any notes regarding his observations, if any.  Woolridge would later claim that he "saw no injuries."




   His one single action was to advise another Metro Louisville police officer that he was not needed at the crime scene.  After giving that "advice," Woolridge walked away.  Although the women say they begged him to open the apartment door, he turned away from them, walked toward his vehicle and drove off.

   As he drove away, one of the young women ran to the apartment manager's office and said, "I know something is wrong, please open Salisa's door so we can go in and see her."       

   When the friends finally got into her apartment, they were horrified by the damage from the beating.

   One of them cried, another began praying.  "We're here for you, you're safe now," a third friend said, as she called 911 for an emergency response.  Luster, again unconscious, was unable to speak.


   A detective, Brian Tucker, eventually arrived.  He accompanied the paramedics and the friends to the University of Louisville Medical Center's Trauma Unit.  Nurses in the sex crimes section, who photographed Luster, said Woolridge "would have had to be blind not to see her injuries."

   Tucker later told Emergency Medical Services personnel that Woolridge confirmed that "an unidentified black man told him: "There are no problems, everything is alright."  In September, Tucker also claimed that he interviewed all five friends who accompanied Luster to the hospital the morning after she was attacked.  The women, however, flatly deny that Tucker ever interviewed them.

   Two unidentified white officers, however, did interview two of the women in the interview room at the University of Phoenix in Louisville where they were enrollment advisers.  The officers conducted the two-hour interview with a tape recorder, which they placed on a table and took notes.  When Ellis asked for a copy of the interview, she was told there was none.  Although Tucker's negligence was apparent, he was not warned, suspended or disciplined.

   Ellis said she learned of the interview only when the women asked if Tucker had told her about it,  although as the victim's mother, he should have shared that information with her.  Had Tucker  reported Woolridge to his superior officer, as he was obligated to do, a record of his misconduct would have compelled an investigation.     
   
   Meanwhile, the blows Luster suffered were so powerful that ophthalmologists filled one eye with a special solution to extract a contact lens that was imbedded by the force and wouldn't come out.     
     
   For eight hours, Luster received treatment in the emergency room.  Two months later, to relieve pressure on her brain exacerbated by the blows from the attack, she needed a five-hour surgery, at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, in Little Rock, to halt her seizures and repair other injuries.  The damage from the attack compounded a pre-existing tumor, Ellis said.

   She flew to Louisville, from her home in Omaha, Nebraska, the day after her daughter was attacked.  Within hours after arriving, she asked a detective for the police report about the brutal beating.

   Although Woolridge had not filed a report nor taken notes on which to base one, the detective responded with an untruth.  "We're in the process of working on it," Ellis said he told her.

   Weeks later, when Ellis asked for Woolridge's notes, another officer admitted that "none exist"
and that "there is no file."     
     
   Several months later, in January, 2009, Ellis was slapped by yet another depressing blow when she sought to file a misconduct complaint against Officer Woolridge.  "Your daughter will have to file a complaint in person," Ellis said an officer told her.  "You can't file it over the phone, by mail, e-mail, Fax or with a Fed-Ex.  She was assured, Ellis said, that the deadline for the complaint was February.     

   Although Luster and her grandmother, Frances Fairmont, returned to Louisville well before the February deadline, they weren't told that it had expired in January.  Luster, her grandmother and mother were also unaware that Woolridge had already been allowed to retire on January 31.  Thus it was pointless to file a misconduct complaint against an officer no longer employed by the department.

   All three women learned about Woolridge's through a letter sent by Chief White in September.  Ellis filed an appeal in October but White's decision allowing Woolridge to retire without being held accountable was upheld.

   Woolridge, meanwhile, had already retired with his pension intact.  Then beyond the reach of accountability, departmental officials told Ellis he no longer could be charged with misconduct.
Chief Robert White


   Ellis, continuing her quest for justice, received no assurances of accountability from Chief White, who currently presides over the police force in Denver, Colorado.  White, citing Woolridge's retirement, told her that nothing could be done to hold him accountable.

   White refused to comment for this article.  Through his Chief of Staff, Lt. Murray, he referred all questions to his successor in Louisville, Chief Steven Conrad. 

   Diop Kamau, founder and director of Policeabuse.com., which is assisting Ellis' efforts to seek justice, condemned White's refusal to investigate Woolridge's alleged misconduct.  "Chief White had nine months to punish, fine, suspend or fire Woolridge, but chose not to," said Kamau, who did not limit his criticism to the then chief executive.  "Not only did Chief White fail to exercise his duty, Woolridge's superior officer failed as well," he said.

   "The superior officer was obligated to either sign off on the police report Woolridge should have submitted, or, absent a report, indicated his objection to the subordinate's failure or refusal to have written one," Kamau continued, "so he is as responsible for the obvious misconduct as is Woolridge."   

   In addition, Kamau said, "I don't believe that forcing rape victims to file misconduct complaints in person is the Louisville Police Department's policy now, or that such was the policy in 2009."  To demand that rape victims file misconduct complaints in person, Kamau added, "is unconscionable." 

   Ultimately, Kamau said, "Chief White should have been sanctioned for condoning the refusal to act, he was responsible for what began as Woolridge's determination to do nothing and became a cover-up."

   Moreover, Kamau explained, "Chief White didn't need a complaint to conduct his own investigation; the department had more than enough evidence to open one."

   The chief's failure was not only "deliberate," Kamau charged, "it also bought Woolridge plenty of time to retire, with his pension secure for the future."

   Kamau scoffed at the apology Ellis received from Chief White's successor, Steven Conrad.  In a May 22, 2012 letter, Chief Conrad claimed that he was "truly at a loss to explain retired officer Woolridge's actions and inactions in this matter."

   Chief Conrad claimed that "they (Woolridge's alleged misconduct) do not represent our department's standards or values.  I apologize for his behavior!  Your daughter deserved better!"

   His apology did not reference his predecessor's failure to investigate "Woolridge's actions and inactions," despite the clear authority to do so.  Instead, Chief Conrad appeared to support former  Chief White: "In regards to the internal investigation (which Ellis sought), Officer Rick Woolridge retired before that investigation even started.  Woolridge's retirement left Chief White with no opportunity to hold him accountable for his poor behavior."     

   Meanwhile, he contended, "between the poor initial responses, the failure to recover any possible suspect DNA during (the) post sexual assault examination, the inability of your daughter to provide information about her attacker, the lack of a witness and the significant passage of time, I do not believe a second investigation would be any more fruitful or successful than the first one."

   In conclusion, he said: "I realize this response fails to provide closure for either you or your daughter.  Once again, I apologize!"          

   Policeabuse.com placed three telephone calls to Chief White for comment for this article.  Neither the chief nor his media relations staff have replied thus far.       
         
   Ellis, like Kamau, was unimpressed with Chief Conrad's apology.  "Chief Conrad ought to be fired, he's had ample opportunity to correct Chief White's refusal to act but has not."  The city of Louisville, Ellis said, "ought to be held liable for officer Woolridge's misconduct and utter refusal to do anything to aid Salisa, who was battered and bruised almost beyond recognition."
                                                           


Louisville Police Department freedom of information act response


 

Friday, August 30, 2013

Bolingbrook Police Department

Client has provided information that requires corrections. The Police Department is investigating and seeking a response.

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Monday, August 26, 2013

Breaking news Chris Gill fired

PleaseAbuse.Com has confirmed that Danville city officials have terminated Chris Gill as a police officer

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Monday, August 19, 2013

Danville police chief fired


Front Page Policeabuse.com

Danville Police Chief Keith Gill Fired Son Arrested
Last week, US Marshals received a tip from PoliceAbuse.com about a Danville police officer named Christopher Gill. The US Marshals Service and Vigo County prosecutors obtained a warrant based on evidence supplied by PoliceAbuse.com for Christopher Gill's arrest. Gill was arrested at the Indianapolis airport. Two days before Gill's arrest his father former Danville police chief Keith Gill, was fired by the city of Danville. PoliceAbuse.com repeatedly questioned Danville city officials about the apparent nepotism in the Police Department. Our investigation demonstrated that Gill was receiving protection through his father's role as police chief. Multiple assault complaints were ignored by Danville police officials according to our investigation.
For two years PoliceAbuse.com has been working with Vigo County prosecutors collecting evidence on Chris Gill. We started our investigation after Gill's wife told us she received no help from Danville police officials. She complained that her husband repeatedly told her "he was above the law."
The arrest and termination of Keith Gill concludes a three-year PoliceAbuse.com nepotism and spousal abuse investigation. A special thanks is extended to investigator Greg Miller for his Facebook investigation of Chris Gill. Miller tipped-off authorities to Gill's location.
Our investigation

PoliceAbuse.com also supplied a local news reporter, Karen Hensel, with all the evidence we had collected on Chris Gill.

This is how the Chris Gill story ran in the news after we supplied our evidence.

WISHTV - New information in Danville officer case

·

U.S. Marshals arrest Danville cop at airport



Christopher Gill

Policeabuse.com Danville Investigation

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Arlington TX Beating Witness-Good Samaritan

PoliceAbuse.com is investigating a beating incident involving two Arlington, TX police officers. The beating was witnessed by a bystander who watched the assault from his apartment window. The good Samaritan confronted the officers about the assault. Both officers said that they had not done anything wrong.

PoliceAbuse.com is investigating. We have requested records from the city of Arlington that will allow us to identify the officers in the victim of the assault. The police are resisting our request.

Records request response


Saturday, March 16, 2013

Is it safe to be a prisoner in a Florida correctional facility?


Preliminary Expert Witness Report

Our Original Report

  
Witness interview April 12, 2013


Daniel J Linsinbigler Jr. died Tuesday in a Clay County jail cell. Local news reports have focused on Linsinbigler's strange behavior prior to his arrest. Linsinbigler is alleged to have been running naked in 30° weather prior to his arrest. He is alleged to have consumed unknown drugs and synthetic marijuana leading to his contact with the police.

But very little is known about his death. Police officials have released limited information. The Clay County Sheriff's office will only say that Linsinbigler was in restraints when he died.

PoliceAbuse.com has breaking news on this story. Inmates who witnessed Linsinbigler's death have contacted PoliceAbuse.com. According to the witnesses who were on the floor in solitary confinement Linsinbigler could be heard begging for his life after he had been pepper sprayed and locked in restraints. According to inmates housed on the same floor Linsinbigler screamed as jail guards placed a plastic bag over his head. The inmates contacted PoliceAbuse.com fearing retaliation from jail staff. We are contacting the FBI and the Florida Department of law enforcement with evidence related to this abuse investigation. Jacksonville Times Union report

 
We are also investigating a complaint in the Holmes County Florida jail.

Case Update

On March 19th, at approximately 3 PM PoliceAbuse.com was contacted by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. We provided the lead detective with evidence.

This is an active law enforcement investigation.  Because we have reported crimes to the police investigators we will have no further comment until the Florida Department of Law Enforcement completes its investigation. We do not want anything published on our site to interfere with the investigation.

If you have been a victim of abuse in the Clay County jail please call our office 800-473-5097. You may remain anonymous.


Records Request Filed by Policeabuse.com 3/21/2013

Case update March 23, 2013: in response to our records request, the Clay County Sheriff has released the arrest report For Daniel Linsinbigler Jr. though there are no details about the death we believe the report includes the names of the employees on duty. We are continuing our own independent investigation of this jail death.


Update:


May 4, 2013

We have requested the name of a female employee identified as a nurse on the night of Daniel Linsinbigler's death. The Sheriff's office has given us a response to our records request. However we have asked for clarification regarding access to records. We will make our findings public when the records we are seeking have been obtained.



 
 
Our Original Report



Witness interview April 12, 2013


Daniel J Linsinbigler Jr. died Tuesday in a Clay County jail cell. Local news reports have focused on Linsinbigler's strange behavior prior to his arrest. Linsinbigler is alleged to have been running naked in 30° weather prior to his arrest. He is alleged to have consumed unknown drugs and synthetic marijuana leading to his contact with the police.

But very little is known about his death. Police officials have released limited information. The Clay County Sheriff's office will only say that Linsinbigler was in restraints when he died.

PoliceAbuse.com has breaking news on this story. Inmates who witnessed Linsinbigler's death have contacted PoliceAbuse.com. According to the witnesses who were on the floor in solitary confinement Linsinbigler could be heard begging for his life after he had been pepper sprayed and locked in restraints. According to inmates housed on the same floor Linsinbigler screamed as jail guards placed a plastic bag over his head. The inmates contacted PoliceAbuse.com fearing retaliation from jail staff. We are contacting the FBI and the Florida Department of law enforcement with evidence related to this abuse investigation. Jacksonville Times Union report



We are also investigating a complaint in the Holmes County Florida jail.

Case Update

On March 19th, at approximately 3 PM PoliceAbuse.com was contacted by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. We provided the lead detective with evidence.

This is an active law enforcement investigation.  Because we have reported crimes to the police investigators we will have no further comment until the Florida Department of Law Enforcement completes its investigation. We do not want anything published on our site to interfere with the investigation.

If you have been a victim of abuse in the Clay County jail please call our office 800-473-5097. You may remain anonymous.

Records Request Filed 4/15/2013

Records Request Filed by Policeabuse.com 3/21/2013

Case update March 23, 2013: in response to our records request, the Clay County Sheriff has released the arrest report For Daniel Linsinbigler Jr. though there are no details about the death we believe the report includes the names of the employees on duty. We are continuing our own independent investigation of this jail death.


Update:


May 4, 2013

We have requested the name of a female employee identified as a nurse on the night of Daniel Linsinbigler's death. The Sheriff's office has given us a response to our records request. However we have asked for clarification regarding access to records. We will make our findings public when the records we are seeking have been obtained.

Update- Clay County Clarifies Response to Request



Friday, March 15, 2013

Chattanooga Tennessee police-Officers Fired

Chattanooga Tennessee police misconduct or police to the rescue? We still believe the force was excessive despite the fact that the officers were coming to the rescue of another person.



Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Sunnyvale Police Department-"it's just a clerical error."

Our client Doug McMillan is a consulting criminal justice professional, but he is no longer employable in his field of work. A police department's negligence has cost him his career and perhaps his family. Doug is losing his home and has filed bankruptcy after a string of failed job interviews. 5 years after it was entered in error, Doug found  that he had been wrongfully added to a criminal database as a violent offender. Doug has never been convicted of any crime. Policeabuse.com is working to clear his name. We are seeking support in pursuing legislation that will prevent similar abuse from happening to anyone else.

Unfortunately Doug is not alone. Other reports:





Mike Nichols Attorney by Policeabuse.com

Inmate Raped by Jail Staff -Holmes County Florida

Holmes County Jail Rape Investigation from Diop Kamau on Vimeo.



 A Florida Inmate named Dale Clacks Also Known as Dale Castro was raped earlier this year by inmates in the Holmes County Florida jail. The rape was facilitated by a Florida correctional officer named Joel Patrick. Capt. Patrick opened the door for the inmates and encouraged them to engage in the sexual assault of Castro. Capt. Patrick believed that Castro was guilty of a sex crime. In addition to opening Castro's cell for the other inmates who later raped him, Capt. Patrick force Castro to drink urine from a toilet. Capt. Patrick was arrested after we filed a complaint with the Holmes County jail. We want to know why he has not been charged as an accessory to rape. Follow this story on policeabuse.com

PoliceAbuse.com has obtained a copy of the investigation of deputies employed by the Holmes County Sheriff office. As a result of our complaint the Sheriff's office initiated a criminal investigation which was turned over to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The correctional officer was arrested on April 1, 2013 and charge with criminal battery on an inmate.

Among the allegations confirmed through investigation are a series of abusive acts amounting to torture and humiliation rituals. The victim of the attacks was an inmate presumed to be guilty of a sex crime. The jail staff notified inmates of the sex crime and encouraged them to assault the inmate victim. The victim was also forced to drink urine and brush his teeth with a toothbrush after scrubbing a toilet. Our investigation is continuing.


The initial interview



Followup interview



Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Officer Carole Romero Ga. Health Sciences Police


Factual summary:

Marlene L. Grant is a 60-year-old African-American woman. Ms. Grant is a retired corrections officer. Ms. Grant receives food stamps and monthly living support. She lives in a retirement community. Mrs. Grant volunteers at a local church community center. Ms. Grant has no history of drug use and she had no criminal record until the incident described in this report. Ms Grant was on her way to volunteer at a "help the homeless," event at church nearby when she was approached by Officer Carole Romero.
 

On March 24, 2012 at approximately 9:00 AM Ms. Grant left her home to walk to the nearby church located approximately 1 mile away. She was unarmed with the exception of a small pocket knife she carries to assist her with her task at the community center and at home. As Ms. Grant crossed through the Georgia Health Sciences campus she was approached by a police officer later identified as Carole Romero. According to Ms. Grant and police reports the officer made contact and began to question Ms. Grant. According to police affidavits Ms. Grant was uncooperative and refused to answer the officer. In my interviews with Mrs. Grant she reports that the officer stopped her three times never providing a reason for the stop. Ms. Grant assumed she was free to go and she continued walking. According to Ms. Grant she was not attempting to break any laws. She was simply exercising her right to leave the area as she had committed no crime and she was late for an appointment at the local church where she was scheduled to do volunteer work for the homeless.

According to Officer Romero, Ms. Grant became combative and had to be subdued with the assistance of the second officer named Zizzamia. The officers claimed that Ms. Grant resisted arrest and bit Officer Romero. Ms. Grant was arrested for obstructing justice and assault on a police officer. Mrs. Grant disputes the officer’s account of the incident. In a series of interviews she explained that she never attacked the officer but only continued walking. She said that Officer Romero attempted to tackle her and with the assistance of Officer Zizzamia, she was thrown to the ground and body slammed. She also reports being tasered multiple times while on the ground. She was knocked unconscious by the assault of the officers.

Analysis

I have been asked to review available records and assess the arrest and the use of force by officers Romero and Zizzamia. My assessment will be based on my experience as a police officer and patrol supervisor. I have made more than 300 arrests. My experience as a detective will also be used to assess the conduct of the officers as it relates to Ms. Grant. My assessments will also be inclusive of International Association of Chiefs of Police standards regarding subject stops, use of force and field interviews.

Opinions and conclusions

After reviewing police affidavits, medical reports witness statements and other records it is my opinion to a reasonable degree a professional certainty that there are problems with this arrest and that the force used appears to be excessive.

Citizens are entitled to freedom of movement. Police officers may engage citizens for questioning when there is a legitimate law enforcement concern or a public safety matter. Short of that, police officers must have a good reason for contacting or detaining anyone. My review of the available records demonstrates that the officer made several errors in this contact. The most obvious concern is that there appears to be no underlying crime. Though Marlene Grant was arrested for obstruction and illegal possession of a weapon (a pocket knife), she was perfectly within her rights to walk through the MCG campus so long as she did not disturb anyone or enter a restricted area. An officer who is curious about someone's activities must first have probable cause basis for detention. There appears to be no basis for the contact Officer Romero initiated with Marlene Grant. Though the officers later learned that Ms. Grant had a pocket knife they did not know that when they approached Mrs. Grant initially. What the officers found later is irrelevant to the basis of the stop. Inquiring about Marlene Grant’s status as a student is not demonstrably tied to any legitimate law enforcement function in the officer’s report. Was there a crime in the area? Did someone impersonating a student do something that caught the officer’s attention? These questions are unanswered by the officer’s police report and subsequent affidavits. It appears that Marlene Grant was a stopped purely based Officer Romero’s concern that she was not a student. There is nothing else supporting this contact in the officer’s police report. Moreover as an officer it is my experience that in such a circumstance Marlene Grant would be entitled to continue walking until told that she was being detained or placed under arrest. According to Ms. Grant she was never given a reason for being stopped. Indeed, Ms. Grant believes that she was the target of racial profiling.

According to Ms. Grant and the police report there was no crime that Ms. Grant was suspected of committing when Officer Romero approached her. The time of day, 9 AM is not normally associated with high rates of criminal activity. Indeed it was broad daylight and there was no reason to assume Ms. Grant was doing anything but walking. She had no obligation to submit herself to a stop without some probable cause described by the officers. There appears to be no probable cause laying out justification for this contact in the officer’s affidavits.

I've investigated more than 8000 complaints of police misconduct. Based on my experience police officers often charge citizens who they have hurt or injured with assault or resisting arrest. The charge protects the officer from allegations of excessive force. If the officer was defending himself or herself from attack whatever force they used will likely be justified. Marlene Grant reported being tasered nearly a dozen times in her buttocks area. She had injuries sustained all over her body from the attack by the officers. According to witnesses the assault by the officers has had a dramatic impact on Ms. Grant’s health. The coordinator at the church who was waiting for Ms. Grant said that she has suggested that Ms. Grant discontinue volunteering or reduce her community service substantially because of her injuries. The church volunteer coordinator told me that prior to this assault Ms. Grant was a healthy and vibrant woman. After her assault by the officers and her jail incarceration for five days Ms. Grant is a diminished woman physically and mentally. The coordinator told me that Ms. Grant is unable to perform many of the tasks she was able to do prior to the attack by the officers. I have included this witness’s account because it is consistent with what Marlene Grant told me about the severity of the assault by the officers.

Use of force

Police officers are entitled to use force to overcome resistance and to secure public safety. If an officer is threatened, or if the suspect is resisting, officers are trained to use force sufficient to overcome the resistance. Police officers are not entitled to use more force than is necessary. In this matter, Marlene Grant was walking through an area legally when she was confronted by Officer Romero and later a second officer named Zizzamia. Given Marlene Grant's age and other facts, it is my opinion that two police officers using the amount of force described under the circumstances were improper. There is nothing in the officer’s affidavits to support the use of the Taser on a 60-year-old woman in the manner described by Marlene Grant. The fact that there was no crime being committed prior to the assault by the officers makes the use of force more doubtful. Moreover, the claim that a sixty year old woman on her way to volunteer at church attacked two police officers for no reason is dubious. It is my opinion that the charges made against Ms. Grant may be inflated to protect the officers from criminal or civil liability for their actions.

Based on the information contained in the officers affidavits Marlene Grant's testimony and my interview with witnesses it is my professional opinion based on my training and experience as a police officer that the force used against Marlene Grant was excessive and that the police officers had no basis to contact Ms. Grant.


Materials Reviewed
 In preparing my report, I reviewed the following materials which are commonly examined in any area of expertise and rendering professional/expert opinions on police practices.  
Police reports
Previously Obtained Witness Statements
Private Investigative Report
Photographs of the arrest location
Route Traveled by the complainant
International Association of Chiefs of Police Model Policies in the following areas:
Use of Force
Subject Stops
Field Interviews
General Standards of Conduct

Opinions and Conclusions
After reviewing the aforementioned records, court testimony, law enforcement policies and witness statements I am prepared to render a professional opinion. It is my professional opinion based on my training and experience as a police officer that probable cause did not exist to make a subject stop, search and arrest.
Again, I reserve the right to amend or supplement this report should any other relevant information become available to me.

Cases I have been retained as an expert in past 5 years:
Lateef Al-Saraji and Theresa Al-Saraji V. City of Dallas, Police
Carney V. City of Raynham
Feliciano V. Suffolk County
Additional Evidence:
Evidence video covering my review of evidence approximately 15 minutes
Compensation: $7500 Expert Opinion
I charge a fee of $750.00 per day for trial testimony excluding travel fees

The officers reports