Results 1 to 20 of 20

Thread: Officer's Conspiracy a Felony? Re. 1st Amendment

  1. #1
    Newbie cato's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    California, USA
    Posts
    2,335

    Post imported post

    On the Manassas thread, Mike brought up an angle that wasn't fully discussed. He intimated that, all other misconduct and violations of policy aside, the removal of the 7 patrons from their lawful gathering, after the officer's unsuccessful attempt, either based on mistake of law or color of authority, to intimidate the 7 into stopping their VA protected constitutional open carry rights and to break the law, the patron's 1st Amendment Right to peaceably assemble was violated.

    This charge I think hinges on whether or not the manager was pressured or even forced into agreeing to expel the patrons, and there is, I believe, ample evidence to support this claim from the FOIA documents and witnesses.

    I've had a little interaction with the FBI, but my understanding is that conspiracy under color of authority to deny rights is a Federal felony. Does anyone here think the Feds would find the facts compelling enough to investigate? Police corruption is also high on their interests. Their web site is interesting to read.

  2. #2
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    3,315

    Post imported post

    I suggested this approach somewhere on page 17 of that thread. In fact your research is correct, as is your assessment of the interest in this sort of violation by Federal authorities.

    To assert the claim and start an investigation the Tony's 7 (only they have standing) must contact either FBI headquarters or the Washington Field Office and report the offense. They will have to complete an official complaint including signed sworn statements and they should provide as much supporting evidence as they can. It would be best if their Lawyer assisted in this.

    Once the complaint is in the hopper the case may take a few days/weeks to be assigned and float to the top in someone's "in" box, or it could generate a lot of instant interest.

    Regards
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  3. #3
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    3,315

    Post imported post

    I just spent a little more time looking at the FOIA info on this matter again.

    Based on the nature of the MCPD contacts with other local agencies there might be room here for a broader conspiracy charge as well. From the interdepartmental communications it seems clear that most departments view open carry as a means for people to test police response. From the content and tone of the messages, they clearly see this less as an exercise of legal rights and more of a taunting of the police. There seems to be a collective closing of the ranks among the departments that responded to the initial MCPD message.

    The statement from one department concerning having your litigation insurance is telling that the departments DO know that Open carry is generally legal and that infringement of that right could produce legal action. Some much for any departmental claim of innocent error.

    It is also disconcerting that much of the communication between them was obviously by phone. While the phone calls them selves cannot be reported under FOIA (there is no record to disclose) the nature and content of the conversation IS subject to FOIA. The MCPD police should get another FOIA request for a summary of the content and substance of these telephonic communications. This is accomplished by provision of a sworn statement from one or more of the participants of the call.

    In addition requests should be made under FOIA to all of the other departments contacted by MCPD regarding this incident.

    Regards
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  4. #4
    Newbie cato's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    California, USA
    Posts
    2,335

    Post imported post

    Knowing the nature of internal actions, not that it is impossible for things to be fixed internally, I question the ability of every department of small or moderate size to handle an event involving an entire shift itself, rather then turn it over to a more "removed" and "neutral" department. In CA this can be done by request of the department head to another agency, local, Sheriff, or AG. In fact, here a department is required to inform the DA's office of any on or off duty misdemeanor or felony a department member might have committed.

  5. #5
    Newbie cato's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    California, USA
    Posts
    2,335

    Post imported post

    Most departments have all phone lines recorded digitally these days. I don't know about VA. Might be worth investigation on VCDL's part. Plus, there might be city cell phones used by the administration(the brass) with which text messages can be retrieved that might indicate how seriously they plan on investigating.

    My brass avoid using the hardlines and e-mails for that reason I suspect.

    As much as I feel for the individual officers, their jobs, family, house payments etc...there is nothing like a civil/criminal investigation to get the attention needed to stop a certain government practice or attitude.

  6. #6
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    3,315

    Post imported post

    cato wrote:
    Most departments have all phone lines recorded digitally these days.* I don't know about VA.* Might be worth investigation on VCDL's part.* Plus, there might be city cell phones used by the administration(the brass) with which text messages can be retrieved that might indicate how seriously they plan on investigating.

    My brass avoid using the hardlines and e-mails for that reason I suspect.

    As much as I feel for the individual officers, their jobs, family, house payments etc...there is nothing like a civil/criminal investigation to get the attention needed to stop a certain government practice or attitude.
    You are correct. All the 911 services in NOVA are digital. Moreover, for large events the 4 major departments in Prince Williams County do coordinate and cross cover. What I have not seen is any indication that a call went from MCPD to PWCPD or the Sheriff's Office to request cross-coverage at the time of the Tony's incident. This despite dedication of most if not all of the duty shift.

    Another overlooked area of information includes the cruisers. Some of the MCPD cruisers are camera equipped and have microphones attached to the officer through wireless connections. It is probably too late to salvage these recordings, but they might go a long way in documenting the incident.

    The current FOIA data states that they took no "photographs" at the time of the incident. But video and audio on video are not photographs. Technically if this kind of information is found to exist at this point in time, they would have a serious problem in the area of FOIA compliance to go along with all the other charges.
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  7. #7
    Newbie cato's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    California, USA
    Posts
    2,335

    Post imported post

    The city council also has a constitutional duty as elected officials to act on any and all reasonable information brought to them. Failure to act can result in personal and criminal liability at the state and federal level. There have been several high profile arrests of city council members and city administrators in CA for not acting in accord to their legal requirement to exercise fair oversight of their responsibilities; ie: police departments etc...

    "Personal liabilities" usually gets elected and appointed official's attention.

  8. #8
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    3,315

    Post imported post

    cato wrote:
    The city council also has a constitutional duty as elected officials to act on any and all reasonable information brought to them.* Failure to act can result in personal and criminal liability at the state and federal level.* There have been several high profile arrests of city council members and city administrators in CA for not acting in accord to their legal requirement to exercise fair oversight of their responsibilities; ie: police departments etc...

    "Personal liabilities" usually gets elected and appointed official's attention.
    Unfortunately, here in Virginia all they have to do to duck this bullet is act in accordance with precedent. They are absolved of personal liability and legal act at that level by much of the current code.

    That does not mean the Council cannot be sued, or even prosecuted criminally for malfeasance, but their exposure in these ares is very limited. It has to be a really clear cut willful criminal act.

    Regards
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  9. #9
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Buffalo Valley, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    329

    Post imported post

    Hawkflyer wrote:
    I just spent a little more time looking at the FOIA info on this matter again.

    Based on the nature of the MCPD contacts with other local agencies there might be room here for a broader conspiracy charge as well. From the interdepartmental communications it seems clear that most departments view open carry as a means for people to test police response. From the content and tone of the messages, they clearly see this less as an exercise of legal rights and more of a taunting of the police. There seems to be a collective closing of the ranks among the departments that responded to the initial MCPD message.

    <snip>
    Regards
    I used to be a federal litigation attorney representing both civilians and local governments. I'd have a lot of fun with this issue, if I represented the citizens.

    Me: "So, it's the PD's practice and policy to respond to this type of call?"

    Chief: "Yes, sir."

    Me: "Even where the citizen was entirely within his rights to open-carry?"

    Chief: "When we have a complaint from another citizen, we dispatch an officer to ascertain the circumstances."

    Me: "Even if the citizen is within his rights?"

    Chief: "That really can't be determined until the officer is on the premises."

    Me: "OK. You get a call from Smith, complaining that his neighbor Grady is drinking an iced tea in his own front yard. You're going to dispatch an officer to ascertain the legality of Grady's conduct?"

    Chief: "That's ridiculous."

    Me: "Yes, it is. The citizens weren't doing anything any more illegal than drinking iced tea, were they?"

    Chief: "I suppose not."

    Me: "And your officers had no grounds to cite them or arrest them."

    Chief: "No, sir, and they didn't do so."

    Me: "But they induced the restaurant management to eject my clients, who were by your own admission perfectly law-abiding citizens."

    Chief: "Is that a question?"

    Me: "No, Chief, but this is: Did you fully comply with Mr. Stollenwerk's FOIA request?"

    Chief: "Of course."

    Me: "So you produced all relevant documents?"

    Chief: "Certainly."

    Me: "And there's no reprimand of any officer for having induced the restaurant management to ask Stollenwerk and his associates to leave, is there."

    Chief: "Um....."

  10. #10
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    dumries, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    321

    Post imported post

    Ifthe first LEO told the Tony's 7 that they needed to conceale, they would then

    be in violation. For him to tell them to do so could be considered

    " conspiracy to commit a crime ", that is a felony!

    That LEO Should be held accountible.

    If I'amwrong on this, tell me

  11. #11
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    3,315

    Post imported post

    1st freedom wrote:
    If*the first LEO told the Tony's 7 that they needed to conceal, they would then

    be in violation. For him to tell them to do so could be considered

    " conspiracy to commit a crime ", that is a felony!

    That LEO Should be held accountable.

    If I'm*wrong on this, tell me
    I am not a lawyer, but in my experience in case work, to support a conspiracy charge all of the conspirators have to agree to work toward completion of the same criminal act. Moreover, it must be known (in most cases) at the time of the conspiracy, that the thing they are agreeing to do is in fact illegal. In this case, these Officers could always claim that they did not know that it was not within their discretion to authorize temporary concealment as an exigent circumstance to resolve the complaint.

    Asking the owner to toss them out would not be conspiracy as it is really within the discretion of the owner, and certainly the Officer can ask him about this. That said the owner in this case MAY have a problem, because he did not have an anti-OC policy at the time of the incident, and in fact discriminated against this particular group by implementing on after they had been there for an hour. His position is particularly risky because he has routinely allowed OC in the past, including many of the same individuals. He may also have a problem if his "New" policy is not universal.

    Regards
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  12. #12
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    , ,
    Posts
    116

    Post imported post

    Does Tony's Pizza have a security camera? I would imagine it does, as do alot of other businesses in the area that may have the incident on film? Just a thought....

  13. #13
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    3,315

    Post imported post

    ProtectMd wrote:
    Does Tony's Pizza have a security camera? I would imagine it does, as do alot of other businesses in the area that may have the incident on film? Just a thought....
    I brought this up before. At this point it is too late to get that unless it was recorded on tape (as opposed to HDD) and Tony's or the police took out the tape that night. Most security systems eventually overwrite old recordings.

    Regards
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  14. #14
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Bristow, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    491

    Post imported post

    I spoke with a lawyer today in Manassas who works the PW County courts . This was a casual conversation about the Tony's event . He said that the officers are guilty of disordely conduct (Incitement intended to start a fight) . They are also guilty of a 1983 violation (Denial of civil rights by a Government Offical) .

  15. #15
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    3,315

    Post imported post

    casullshooter wrote:
    I spoke with a lawyer today in Manassas who works the PW County courts . This was a casual conversation about the Tony's event . He said that the officers are guilty of disordely conduct (Incitement intended to start a fight) . They are also guilty of a 1983 violation (Denial of civil rights by a Government Offical) .
    +1 - At the very least.

    Regards
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  16. #16
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Buffalo Valley, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    329

    Post imported post

    It's been settled law for a long time that individuals have standing to bring a lawsuit under 42 USC Sec. 1983 for violations of their civil rights. The most common defense is "qualified immunity," which says basically that the government official had no reasonable way to know that this was a violation of the plaintiff's rights, because the law was unclear or unsettled.

    They can nix that defense in this case.

  17. #17
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Virginia, USA
    Posts
    1,043

    Post imported post

    Given the latest publicity surrounding the findings of the internal investigation and the evidence provided in the replies to the FOIA requests, I wonder if it is still prudent to further investigate the feasibility of bringing charges against the officers and/or department based on the above...


    Thoughts?

  18. #18
    Founder's Club Member Hawkflyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Prince William County, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    3,315

    Post imported post

    vrwmiller wrote:
    Given the latest publicity surrounding the findings of the internal investigation and the evidence provided in the replies to the FOIA requests, I wonder if it is still prudent to further investigate the feasibility of bringing charges against the officers and/or department based on the above...


    Thoughts?
    I am surprised you waited this long.
    "Research has shown that a 230 grain lead pellet placed just behind the ear at 850 FPS results in a permanent cure for violent criminal behavior."
    "If you are not getting Flak, you are not over the target"
    "186,000 Miles per second! ... Not just a good idea ... It's the law!"

  19. #19
    Regular Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Bristow, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    491

    Post imported post

    Any suit will have to be filed by one of the "7". Use a lawyer from outside of PW county as lawyers tend not to sue the Police in the county where they work and live . They do not want to become the next target of harrassment . (Ted Kennedy was unaware that Harrass is one word)

  20. #20
    Regular Member paramedic70002's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Franklin, VA, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    1,448

    Post imported post

    It would be nice if someone could get the manager to admit he lied, or pin perjury on him in court. I would love to have the "witnesses" cross examined also. And why did the manager wait for the LEOs to come before he acted on so many complaints?
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

    Guns Save Lives. Paramedics Save Lives. But...
    Paramedics With Guns Scare People!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •