Cop Sentenced 30 Days For Getting a Phone Number from Woman

August 14, 2008

A former part-time Pennsylvania police officer has been sentenced to 30 days in jail for pulling over a woman while he was off duty – just to give her his phone number. Steven Klinger, 32, was charged with official oppression, or acting outside his authority as an officer.

Police said he used red and blue lights mounted on the dashboard of his pickup truck to pull over a woman in Berwick in eastern Pennsylvania in April 2007. The woman became suspicious when he began asking her if she was married or had a boyfriend, police said.

Klinger was also sentenced Tuesday to three additional days in jail and fined $1,000 for driving drunk in July 2007. Police said he had a blood-alcohol level of .40 percent, five times the legal driving limit.

Klinger last worked for the Dallas Police Department in northeastern Pennsylvania. He is currently unemployed.

He apologized for his actions, and told the judge he had checked into treatment for alcohol abuse.

** The above photo is NOT related to the above story.

Article from the Associated Press

iNPLACENEWS

© 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.


British Man Banned From Seeing Girlfriend Due to Loud Sex

August 14, 2008

A British man has been banned from visiting his girlfriend’s home after neighbors complained about noisy sex, a local government official said Thursday.

Adam Hinton, 32, was barred from getting within 100 meters (110 yards) of his 29-year-old girlfriend Kerry Norris’ apartment by a British court Wednesday, Brighton and Hove City Council spokesman Mike Taggart said.

Residents of Norris’s publicly-owned home had been complaining since 2006 about thumping music, banging headboards, and screamed obscenities, Taggart said. He added that a young child had been traumatized.

“There was a 6-year-old child who was subjected to the sort of obscenities you wouldn’t want a 6-year-old to hear,” Taggart said, adding that Norris also sunbathed naked in her yard in full view of passers-by.

“She is a classic nightmare neighbor,” he said. “There’s a salacious, smutty side to this case. But it’s not about sex, it’s about allowing your neighbors to have a normal decent life without being disturbed.”

Taggart said the city council in the southern English community sought the injunction banning Hinton from the apartment because Norris had ignored a previous court order demanding that she be more quiet.

Last week, Norris was forced to pay 300 pounds (US$560) in fines and court costs for breaking “noise abatement order,” Taggart said.

Neither Norris or Hinton could be located for comment.

Article by Raphael G. Satter

iNPLACENEWS

© 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.


High Gas Prices Forcing People To Urinate in Bottles

August 8, 2008


Police say there’s been an alarming rise in urine-filled plastic containers found along a three-mile stretch of Interstate 84 in eastern Oregon.

A litter crew for the Oregon Department of Transportation picked up an estimated 200-300 urine filled plastic bottles, along the highway, about half of which were found in a short stretch dubbed “Three Mile Hill.”

Police say that drivers – particularly commercial trucks – are typically driving very slowly through the area.

Police think the price of fuel may be causing drivers to travel slower than normal to save fuel while at the same time passing rest areas or truck stops.

Under Oregon law, improperly disposing of human waste is a misdemeanor which can carry a fine of up to $250.

Article by the Associated Press

iNPLACENEWS

© 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.


Marine Ordered to Stand Trial For Killings in Fallujah

August 8, 2008

A Camp Pendleton Marine sergeant was ordered Friday to stand trial on charges of unpremeditated murder and dereliction of duty in the killing of an unarmed detainee in Fallujah, Iraq.

Lt. Gen. Samuel Helland ordered the court-martial of Sgt. Ryan Weemer after finding there was sufficient evidence to send him to trial.

Weemer is one of three current and former Marines accused of breaking rules of engagement and killing four men they had captured after a platoon commander radioed to ask whether the Iraqis were “dead yet.”

A telephone message left by for Weemer’s attorney, Paul Hackett, was not immediately returned.

The killings happened in November 2004 during the invasion of Fallujah, one of the fiercest ground battles of the Iraq war.

The case came to light in 2006, when Weemer volunteered details to a U.S. Secret Service job interviewer during a polygraph screening that included a question about the most serious crime he had ever committed.

Weemer, of Hindsboro, Ill., is charged with one count of murder and six counts of dereliction of duty encompassing failure to follow the rules of engagement in Fallujah and failing to follow standard operating procedures for apprehending or treating detainees or civilian prisoners of war.

Helland’s decision to order the court-martial follows an Article 32 hearing, similar to an evidentiary hearing, where prosecutors argued that Weemer, a burly 25-year-old honored with a Purple Heart, should be tried for unpremeditated murder because he knew the rules of engagement forbade harming anyone in his custody.

During the hearing last month, prosecutors played a tape recording of the Secret Service interview where Weemer recounted arguing with his squadmates about what to do with the detainees – all military-age males captured in a house where weapons were also found. The squad was under pressure from the platoon to get moving.

Marine Corps spokesman Lt. Col. David Griesmer said Weemer next faces arraignment on the charges at Camp Pendleton. A date has not been set.

Weemer’s attorney has put much of the blame on Weemer’s former squad leader, saying Jose Nazario Jr. escalated the situation inside the house by beating one detainee with the butt of a rifle after the weapons cache was found.

Nazario, 27, of Riverside, Calif., has been charged with two counts of voluntary manslaughter in the killing of two captives. The former sergeant is scheduled to be tried Aug. 19 in federal court because he has already completed his military service.

Another Marine, Sgt. Jermaine Nelson, 26, of New York, is slated to be court-martialed in December on charges of unpremeditated murder and dereliction of duty for his role in the alleged killings.

Article by Chelsea J. Carter

Andre Jetmir iNPLACENEWS


© 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.


Obama Assassination Plan Mastermind Arrested

August 7, 2008

A man who authorities said was keeping weapons and military-style gear in his hotel room and car appeared in court Thursday on charges he threatened to assassinate Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama.

Raymond Hunter Geisel, 22, was arrested by the Secret Service on Saturday in Miami and was ordered held at Miami’s downtown detention center without bail Thursday by a federal magistrate.

A Secret Service affidavit charges that Geisel made the threat during a training class for bail bondsmen in Miami in late July. According to someone else in the 48-member class, Geisel allegedly referred to Obama with a racial epithet and continued, “If he gets elected, I’ll assassinate him myself.”

Obama was most recently in Florida on Aug. 1-2 but did not visit the South Florida area.

Another person in the class quoted Geisel as saying that “he hated George W. Bush and that he wanted to put a bullet in the president’s head,” according to the Secret Service.

Geisel denied in a written statement to a Secret Service agent that he ever made those threats, and the documents don’t indicate that he ever took steps to carry out any assassination. He was charged only with threatening Obama, the presumptive Democratic nominee, but not for any threat against President Bush.

Geisel’s court-appointed attorney declined comment. The charge of threatening a major candidate for president or vice president carries a maximum prison sentence of five years.

The Obama campaign declined comment Thursday on the alleged threat.

In the interview with a Secret Service agent, Geisel said “if he wanted to kill Senator Obama he simply would shoot him with a sniper rifle, but then he claimed that he was just joking,” according to court documents.

A search of Geisel’s 1998 Ford Explorer and hotel room in Miami uncovered a loaded 9mm handgun, knives, dozens of rounds of ammunition including armor-piercing types, body armor, military-style fatigues and a machete. The SUV, which has Maine license plates, was wired with flashing red and yellow emergency lights.

Geisel told the Secret Service he was originally from Bangor, Maine, and had been living recently in a houseboat in the Florida Keys town of Marathon, according to court documents. He said he used the handgun for training for the bail bondsman class, had the knives for protection and used the machete to cut brush in Maine.

In the affidavit, the Secret Service said Geisel told agents that he suffered from psychiatric problems including post-traumatic stress disorder, but he couldn’t provide the names of any facilities where he sought treatment.

Article by Curt Anderson

Andre Jetmir iNPLACENEWS

© 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.


KFC and Pizza Instead of Murder Plea

August 7, 2008


A New York man who pleaded guilty to murder in Oregon in exchange for buckets of fried chicken will get calzones and pizza to go with his life sentence.

Tremayne Durham, 33, of New York City, admitted last month that he fatally shot Adam Calbreath, 39, of Gresham, in June 2006. Durham wanted to sell ice cream and ordered an $18,000 truck from an Oregon company. He later changed his mind, but the company wouldn’t provide a refund.

The would-be ice cream man came to Oregon and killed Calbreath, a former employee of the company, while looking for its owner, authorities said.

Durham agreed to plead guilty to murder — but only if he could get a break from jail food. The judge agreed and granted Durham a feast of KFC chicken, Popeye’s chicken, mashed potatoes, coleslaw, carrot cake and ice cream.

After Wednesday’s sentencing, Durham was to get the rest of the deal — calzones, lasagna, pizza and ice cream, his defense attorney confirmed. They will pay the tab.

Durham also got married Wednesday in a civil ceremony at the Portland courthouse. The wedding to Vanessa Davis, 48, also of New York City, was not part of the plea deal that will give Durham a chance for parole after 30 years.

Deputy District Attorney Josh Lamborn said Multnomah County Judge Eric Bergstrom made the right call in allowing the unusual plea agreement because it saved the expense of a trial and possible appeals.

Article from the Associated Press

Andre Jetmir iNPLACENEWS

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


Detroit Mayor Sent To Jail

August 7, 2008


A judge ordered Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick to jail Thursday for violating the terms of his bond in his perjury case by making a city business trip to Canada and not informing the court.

The mayor, who is accused of lying under oath in a civil case and faces eight felony counts, made the trip last month without telling the court in advance, leading the county prosecutor’s office to request Kilpatrick be punished.

Only minutes earlier, the mayor offered an apology to the court, telling District Court Judge Ronald Giles that for seven months, “I’ve been living in an incredible state of pressure and scrutiny.”

But Giles sent the mayor to jail anyway, telling him he would have given any defendant the same treatment.

“What matters to me though is how the court overall is perceived and how if it was not Kwame Kilpatrick sitting in that seat, if it was John Six-Pack sitting in that seat, what would I do? And that answer is simple,” he said.

Circuit Court Judge Thomas E. Jackson said he wouldn’t hear an appeal by Kilpatrick’s lawyers until 9 a.m. Friday, meaning the mayor was to spend the night in jail.

The mayor’s chief of staff, Kandia Milton, will run the city while Kilpatrick is in jail, mayoral spokeswoman Denise Tolliver said.

Earlier Thursday, Kilpatrick waived his right to a preliminary hearing and will head to trial on perjury and other criminal charges that could land him in prison for up to 15 years.

Lawyers for the mayor and ex-Chief of Staff Christine Beatty asked Giles to waive next month’s preliminary examination. The criminal case now heads to Wayne County Circuit Court for trial.

Kilpatrick and Beatty are charged with perjury, misconduct and obstruction of justice. They are accused of lying about having an intimate relationship and their roles in the firing of a police official.

Both deny the charges.

Kilpatrick and Beatty denied under oath during a civil trial last year that they had a romantic relationship in 2002 and 2003.

But excerpts of sexually explicit text messages recovered from Beatty’s city-issued pager and first published in January by the Free Press contradicted their testimony.

Giles asked the defendants during Thursday morning’s hearing if they freely agreed to waive their rights to a preliminary exam and both said they did.

The judge then set a circuit court arraignment date of Aug. 14.

The preliminary exam – a hearing where a judge determines whether there’s probable cause to hold a trial – had been set for Sept. 22.

After the issue of the preliminary examination was concluded, Assistant Wayne County’s Prosecutor Robert Moran then asked Giles to punish Kilpatrick over the trip to Canada.

The mayor went across the border last month to push the sale of the city’s half of the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel.

Kilpatrick was required to alert the court of all travel plans.

Moran asked Giles to modify Kilpatrick’s bond because of what he called a “flagrant” violation.

After a short recess, Kilpatrick stood and apologized to Giles, saying it wouldn’t happen again.

The judge then ordered a recess and came back with his decision. Kilpatrick stared directly at the judge with his hands clasped near his face as Giles announced his decision.

“I think it’s the most extreme measure he can take. I don’t agree with him,” defense lawyer James Thomas said.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy charged Kilpatrick and Beatty less than two months after the Free Press published excerpts of the text messages. Fingerprinted with their booking photos broadcast across the country, the pair were accused of lying under oath about their relationship and about their roles in the firing of a police official.

More text messages released in April revealed the evolution of flirty and sexually explicit exchanges to professions of love and promises of marriage.

Kilpatrick and his high-priced team of attorneys have questioned the authenticity of those and other text messages, while fighting battles on several legal and political fronts.

A split city council voted in February to ask Kilpatrick to step down. The nine-member group later asked Gov. Jennifer Granholm to remove the mayor for misconduct and plans to hold forfeiture of office proceedings against him.

Through it all Kilpatrick has remained defiant.

Article by Corey Williams and Ed White
iNPLACENEWS

© 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.


Man Who Beheaded Greyhound Passenger Wants To Die

August 5, 2008


A Chinese immigrant accused of stabbing, beheading and cannibalizing a man on a Greyhound bus in Canada pleaded in court Tuesday for someone to “please kill me,” and was ordered to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.

Vince Weiguang Li, who immigrated to Canada from China in 2004, is charged with second-degree murder in last Wednesday’s slaying of 22-year-old carnival worker Tim McLean — an attack which witnesses aboard the bus said appeared to be unprovoked. He has yet to enter a plea.

Li was scheduled to appear Tuesday to determine whether he should undergo psychiatric testing, but the judge in Portage La Prairie adjourned the hearing for a short recess to allow a legal aid attorney to confer with him. Since his arrest, Li has declined to speak to prosecutors and his court-appointed attorney.

When asked again by the judge after the recess if he wanted a lawyer, Li shook his head and then quietly said “please kill me,” The Canadian Press reported.

Li’s remark was heard by reporters and confirmed by court clerks, but was not acknowledged by the judge. He is due back in court Sept. 8.

Officers at the scene of the bus attack discovered a plastic bag containing an ear, nose and part of a mouth in Li’s pocket, according to a police report submitted by prosecutor Joyce Dalmyn as evidence supporting a request for the psychological test.

The night of the deadly attack, Dalmyn said, the only response officers received from Li was: “I have to stay on the bus forever”.

Passengers on the bus described a horrific scene that began Wednesday night as they shuttled through the darkness along a desolate stretch of the TransCanada Highway about 12 miles from Portage La Prairie.

Thirty-seven passengers were aboard the Greyhound from Edmonton, Alberta, to Winnipeg, Manitoba. Some were napping and others watching “The Legend of Zorro” when Li attacked McLean, allegedly stabbing him dozens of times, according to witnesses. As horrified passengers fled from the bus, Li severed McLean’s head, displaying it to some of the passengers gathered outside the bus, witnesses said. He then began hacking at the body, they said.

A police officer at the scene reported seeing the attacker hacking off pieces of the victim’s body and eating them, according to a police tape leaked on the Internet.

A church pastor, Tom Castor, who helped hire Li soon after he immigrated in 2004 with his wife, Anna, said the man never showed any sign of anger or emotional problems when he worked there as a custodian.

Church officials said they vetted Li by contacting references listed on his application and running a criminal record check.

More than 105,000 people have joined an online memorial group for McLean.

Article from Associated Press

iNPLACENEWS

© 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.


Junior Gotti Indicted On Cocaine and Murder Charges

August 5, 2008

John A. “Junior” Gotti has been indicted on conspiracy charges in Florida, linking him to large-scale cocaine trafficking and the slayings of three New York men in the late 1980s and early ’90s, federal officials said Tuesday.

Federal prosecutor Robert O’Neill announced the indictment of the 44-year-old Gotti and five other men at a news conference. He said the indictment showed that the men were “trying to gain a foothold” in the area.

“I think what you have here is the Gambino crime family reaching out to Tampa, Fla.,” said O’Neill.

Gotti – the son of the late Gambino family crime boss John Gotti – was arrested at his Long Island, N.Y., home and is expected to appear later Tuesday in Manhattan federal court. O’Neill said the slayings occurred in 1988, 1990 and 1991.

If convicted, Gotti faces life in prison.

“They tried very hard to convict him up here. They spared no resources and it didn’t work,” said Gotti’s attorney, Charles Carnesi. “It’s tragic for him and his family to have to continually go through this. It’s almost laughable.”

In 1999, Junior Gotti pleaded guilty to racketeering crimes including bribery, extortion, gambling and fraud. He was sentenced to 77 months in prison and was released in 2005.

Gotti also was tried three times in Manhattan on racketeering charges for an alleged plot to kidnap Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa. The trials in 2005 and 2006 ended in hung juries and mistrials.

Federal prosecutors announced at the time that they were giving up – and Gotti said he had long since retired from his life of crime.

Article by CHRISTINE ARMARIO and TOM HAYS


iNPLACENEWS


© 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.


Olsen Twin Wants Immunity in DEA Probe of Heath Ledger’s Death

August 4, 2008


Federal investigators want to question Mary-Kate Olsen about how Heath Ledger got two powerful painkillers that contributed to his accidental overdose death, but she’s refusing to talk without immunity, a law enforcement official said Monday.

Olsen’s lawyer has twice refused requests for her to speak with investigators, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation was ongoing. The lawyer, Michael C. Miller, said the “Full House” actress has nothing to do with the drugs, and has already told the government everything she knows.

“We have provided the government with relevant information including facts in the chronology of events surrounding Mr. Ledger’s death,” Miller said in a statement Monday, “and the fact that Ms. Olsen does not know the source of the drugs Mr. Ledger consumed.”

The official confirmed a report that Olsen wants a promise of immunity from prosecution before speaking to the Drug Enforcement Administration. Olsen was a close friend of Ledger’s, and was the first person called by a masseuse who found the 28-year-old “Dark Knight” actor’s lifeless body in his Manhattan apartment.

Authorities have obtained a subpoena that could force Olsen to appear before a grand jury if negotiations with her lawyer fail, the official said. Other potential witnesses all have answered questions voluntarily, including doctors, Ledger’s ex-girlfriend Michelle Williams and anyone who was in his apartment around the time of his death, the official added.

DEA investigators suspect the painkillers oxycodone and hydrocodone found in Ledger’s system were obtained with phony prescriptions or other illegal means, the official said. Oxycodone is sold as OxyContin; and hydrocodone as Vicodin.

The other drugs, including anti-anxiety medication and sleeping pills, were prescribed legally by doctors in California and Texas, the official said.

The medical examiner’s office wouldn’t say what concentrations of each drug was found, but made clear he was killed by the combination — not an excess of any one drug in particular. It’s common for the DEA to investigate an overdose death with so many different drugs involved, spokesman Garrison Courtney said last month.

The DEA’s New York office declined comment on the stalemate with Olsen, which was first reported Monday by the New York Post. There was no immediate response to a message left with a spokeswoman for Olsen.

The masseuse discovered Ledger’s body on Jan. 22. Police say she spent nine minutes making three calls to Olsen before dialing 911 for help, then called the actress a fourth time after paramedics arrived. At some point during the flurry of frantic calls, Olsen, who was in California, summoned her personal security guards to the apartment to help, police said.

Shortly after the Australian-born actor’s death, Olsen issued a statement that read: “Heath was a friend. His death is a tragic loss.”

Article by Tom Hays
Andre Jetmir iNPLACENEWS

© 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.