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Thread: SWAT officers invade home, Police demand boy go to doctor because of fall during horseplay. WorldND

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    http://wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=59566

    Nearly a dozen members of a police SWAT team in western Colorado punched a hole in the front door and invaded a family's home with guns drawn, demanding that an 11-year-old boy who had had an accidental fall accompany them to the hospital, on the order of Garfield County Magistrate Lain Leoniak.

    The boy's parents and siblings were thrown to the floor at gunpoint and the parents were handcuffed in the weekend assault, and the boy's father told WND it was all because a paramedic was upset the family preferred to care for their son themselves.

    Someone, apparently the unidentified paramedic, called police, the sheriff's office and social services, eventually providing Leoniak with a report that generated the magistrate's court order to the sheriff's office for the SWAT team assault on the family's home in a mobile home development outside of Glenwood Springs, the father, Tom Shiflett, told WND.

    County Social Services[/url] were not returned, and http://www.courts.state.co.us/district/09th/09magistrates.htm]Leoniak,[/url] who earlier served as a water court clerk/referee, also was not available.
    http://www.garcosheriff.com/contact_us/contact_us.html]Sheriff Lou Vallario,[/url] however, did call back, and told WND he ordered his officers to do exactly what the magistrate demanded.

    "I was given a court order by the magistrate to seize the child, and arrange for medical evaluation, and that's what we did," he said.

    According to friends of the family, Tom Shiflett, who has 10 children including six still at home, and served with paramedics in Vietnam, was monitoring his son's condition himself.

    The paramedic and magistrate, however, ruled that that wasn't adequate, and dispatched the officers to take the boy, John, to a hospital, where a doctor evaluated him and released him immediately.

    The accident happened during horseplay, Tom Shiflett told WND. John was grabbing the door handle of a car as his sister was starting to drive away slowly. He slipped, fell to the ground and hit his head, Shiflett said.
    He immediately carried his son into their home several doors away, and John was able to recite Bible verses and correctly spell words as his father and mother, Tina, requested. There were no broken bones, no dilated eyes, or any other noticeable problems.

    The family, whose members live by faith and homeschool, decided not to call an ambulance. But a neighbor did call Westcare Ambulance, and paramedics responded to the home, asking to see and evaluate the boy.

    The paramedics were allowed to see the boy, and found no significant impairment, but wanted to take him to the hospital for an evaluation anyway. Fearing the hospital's bills, the family refused to allow that.

    "This apparently did not go over well with one of the paramedics and they started getting aggravated at Tom for not letting them have their way," a family acquaintance told WND.

    "The paramedics were not at all respectful of Tom's decision, nor did they act in a manner we would expect from professional paramedics," the acquaintance said.

    So the ambulance crew, who also could not be reached by WND, called police, only to be told the decision was up to the Shiflett familiy.

    The paramedics then called the sheriff's office, and officers responded to the home, and were told everyone was being cared for.

    Then the next day, Friday, social services workers appeared at the door and demanded to talk with John "in private."

    They were so persistent Tom ended up having to get John out of the bathtub he was just soaking in, to bring him to the front porch where the social workers could see him, the family reported.

    Then, following an afternoon shopping trip to town, the family settled in for the evening, only to be shocked with the SWAT team attack.

    The sheriff said the decision to use SWAT team force was justified because the father was a "self-proclaimed constitutionalist" and had made threats and "comments" over the years.

    However, the sheriff declined to provide a single instance of the father's illegal behavior. "I can't tell you specifically," he said.

    "He was refusing to provide medical care," the sheriff said.

    However, the sheriff said if his own children were involved in an at-home accident, he would want to be the one to make decisions on their healthcare, as did Shiflett.

    "I guess if that was one of my children, I would make that decision," the sheriff said.

    But he said Shiflett was "rude and confrontational" when the paramedics arrived and entered his home without his permission.

    The sheriff also admitted that the injury to the child had been at least 24 hours earlier, because the fall apparently happened Thursday afternoon, and the SWAT attack happened late Friday evening.

    Officials with the http://www.hslda.org]Home School Legal Defense Association[/url] reported they were looking into the case, because of requests from family friends who are members of the organization.

    "While people can debate whether or not the father should have brought his son to the ER – it seems like this was not the kind of emergency that warrants this kind of outrageous conduct by government officials," a spokesman said.

    Tom Shiflett said when John was evaluated by the physician, "they didn't find anything wrong with him."
    He said the paramedics never should have entered his home, but they followed his wife in the front door when she came in.

    "My attention was on my son," Shiflett said.

    He said the SWAT team punched a hole in his door with a ramrod, and the first officer in the home pointed a gun right in the face of Tom's 20-year-old daughter.

    "I don't know where social services ever got started, or where they got their authority," he said. "But I want to know why we have something in this country that violates our rights, that takes a parental right away."

    He said he saw a multitude of injuries in Vietnam, and while he recognized that his son needed to be watched, he wasn't willing to turn his child over to the paramedics.

    With 10 children, most of them older than John, it's not as if he hasn't seen a bruise or two, either, he said.

    "Now I'm hunting for lawyers that will take the case … I'm going to sue everybody whose name was on that page right down to the judge," he said.

    Mike Donnelly, a lawyer with the HSLDA, told WND the case had a set of circumstances that could be problematic for authorities.

    "In Doe V. Heck, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals held that parents have a fundamental right to familial relations including a liberty interest in the care, custody and control of their children," he said.

    He also said many social services agencies apply "a one size fits all approach" to cases, regardless of circumstances.


  2. #2
    Regular Member Johnny Law's Avatar
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    I'm not sure about Colorado, but in Wa. this type of call would initially be a "welfare check" (not to be confused with welfare recipients receiving their payment). Typically this would have been comprised of 2 Officers going to the residence and conducting a quick investigation of the circumstances.

    This is usually done at the request of someone (can be anyone) who called and voiced a concern for the safety or well being of minors in a given residence. This gives Police the right to go inside any residence in question (without a warrant, as it is exigent circumstances) and make sure that the children are safe, properly nourished, and Check them for any signs of abuse.

    In the Co. case it was based on medical personnnel's complaint that the child may have been seriously injured (bumped head) and needed to beseen by a hospital. A parent refusing to provide proper medicalcare for a child could be viewed as neglect. This factmade this call a higher priority than a welfare check. The Judge also issued a writ of habeus corpus (seizure of a person) for the child.

    Typically with a potentially serious head injury, it is highly recommended that the person be monitored in a hospital for 24 hours, as one canlose consciousness,and die.

    The other factor was the threats or comments that the parent had previously made to the PD. this is what prompted the SWAT response.

    I personally once overheard a gentleman talking at a local gun show to another man. He said that if he ever saw the Police coming up his driveway, he would shoot them all. I was able to discern his identity and address, and logged this info into a database for future reference.

    As you can imagine,a response to his house would be far different than a typical one.What some may consider "loose talk", may betaken very seriously by others.




    If you have to fight, do not fear death. We will all die one day, so fight skillfully and bravely! And if it is to be that you die, then at least go to God proudly. Meet him as the proud warrior that you are, and not as a sniveling coward. Nobody lives forever.

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    Whereas nobody wishes to see children abused, any "threats" or "comments" that this guy made such as would justify the response ofa SWAT team should have gotten them called at the time such unidentified "threats" were made, and not in connection with the apparently superficial injury of a kid (he was immediately released from the hospital, so it can't have been too bad). Sounds a tad heavy-handed to me. I hope they have the decency not to try to bill the guy for a medical evaluation that they declined in the first place - that would really piss me off, above and beyond what's already happened.

    -ljp

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    Regular Member Johnny Law's Avatar
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    Regarding the threats or comments, we refer to them as "prior hazards" and any info or negative contacts with this person or residence are flagged, and pop up when the name or address is pulled up in our computer system. This allows officers who may not know this person to have a heads up on his previous behavior and attitude toward LE.

    As in my personal example, it really doesn't matter what type of contact (good or bad) is to be made withthat particularperson. Driving patrol cars up his driveway would not be an option.
    If you have to fight, do not fear death. We will all die one day, so fight skillfully and bravely! And if it is to be that you die, then at least go to God proudly. Meet him as the proud warrior that you are, and not as a sniveling coward. Nobody lives forever.

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    In a not-entirely-unrelated note, I once asked a cop friend of mine to run my record to see what came up. I was curious whether a juvenile conviction had gotten expunged. It had, but I also had an "approach with caution" warning flash up when my name was queried. I have no idea what that's about - I have a common name and maybe it referred to someone else - but I'm not supremely confident in the accuracy of legal database information. The FBI cleared me for an FFL last year, but cops often have their hands on their guns and/or call for backup automatically when they stop me. Wazzup wit dat? Do the police keep unofficial dossiers on people based on conjecture about what they think someone might be up to? There's no objective basis for treating me like this. I've been stopped in "bad neighborhoods" a few times and maybe they just assume I'm some kind of "skell" for it, but it makes me wonder that someone might take this too far some time (like my last stop, ahem).

    -ljp

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    However, the sheriff said if his own children were involved in an at-home accident, he would want to be the one to make decisions on their healthcare, as did Shiflett.

    "I guess if that was one of my children, I would make that decision," the sheriff said.
    But of course, he knows better than the boys father, and since the father is a constitutionalist, we'd better send a SWAT team. Besides, rights aren't for everybody.

    This is sickening.


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    So now being "rude and confrontational" and being a "constitutionalist" makes you enough of a threat to send in the SWAT team? I am a constitutionalist and have found myself needing to be rude and confrontational before! I hope a SWAT team doesn't kick down my door! This is absolutely ridiculous. I'm going to hold any more comments until I cool down a bit. This kind of stuff just boils my blood.

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    Johnny Law wrote:
    I personally once overheard a gentleman talking at a local gun show to another man. He said that if he ever saw the Police coming up his driveway, he would shoot them all. I was able to discern his identity and address, and logged this info into a database for future reference.


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    All you have to do is just love Big Brother, and He will take care of you... and if you don't love Big Brother, don't worry, He'll teach YOUR kids to love Him while He takes care of them.

    I can obviously see the need to go check up on the welfare of any child if there is REASONABLE CAUSE to do so, but in this (and I am sure many other) case(s) This was flat out kidnapping. I am disgusted.

    We home school. My wife is an RN.We are constitutionalists.We HATE Big Brother. ShouldWe be worried thatour kids are on the list?

    We Are.

    Forget my guns, it's my KIDS they'll have to pry from my cold dead hands. (The kids willbe holding the guns. lol)

    Erus

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    Regular Member Johnny Law's Avatar
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    vmathis12019 wrote:
    So now being "rude and confrontational" and being a "constitutionalist" makes you enough of a threat to send in the SWAT team? I am a constitutionalist and have found myself needing to be rude and confrontational before! I hope a SWAT team doesn't kick down my door! This is absolutely ridiculous. I'm going to hold any more comments until I cool down a bit. This kind of stuff just boils my blood.
    Lets not jump to conclusions. Just as you judge an Officer on his behavior, he too judges you. Almost everyone here has a story about Officer so and so and what an a-hole he is, right? You base that opinion on what was said, and what actions were taken.

    ANYONE who makes threats or comments aboutdoing harm toPolice are damaging their reputation, and these comments will be noted. It also applies to persons who have fought with Officers, or have used weapons during crimes. These people pose a potentially higher risk than joe average, and may be treated with more caution.

    It isn't about "big Brother" collecting info, it's about YOU showing society what you're made of. If you want to be thought of as an a.h., then all you have to do is act like one. If you want to be perceived as a reasonable, respectableperson, then your actions and comments will determine that. It is your freedom toinfluence how people view you.
    If you have to fight, do not fear death. We will all die one day, so fight skillfully and bravely! And if it is to be that you die, then at least go to God proudly. Meet him as the proud warrior that you are, and not as a sniveling coward. Nobody lives forever.

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    Accomplished Advocate color of law's Avatar
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    Tomahawk wrote:
    Johnny Law wrote:
    I personally once overheard a gentleman talking at a local gun show to another man. He said that if he ever saw the Police coming up his driveway, he would shoot them all. I was able to discern his identity and address, and logged this info into a database for future reference.

    Now I know Johnny Law's motives. If you ain't with us, your against us. You, Johnny, are the problem in this country. You think you are judge and jury. You have the power to distroy someones life and you will if someone says something you don't like. So you think the LEADS record is for your use and you will use it to harass and intimidate your enemies. Johnny, are you running IP searches on those on this website that say things that you don't like?

    Sickening, just sickening.

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    color of law wrote:
    Tomahawk wrote:
    Johnny Law wrote:
    I personally once overheard a gentleman talking at a local gun show to another man. He said that if he ever saw the Police coming up his driveway, he would shoot them all. I was able to discern his identity and address, and logged this info into a database for future reference.

    Now I know Johnny Law's motives. If you ain't with us, your against us. You, Johnny, are the problem in this country. You think you are judge and jury. You have the power to distroy someones life and you will if someone says something you don't like. So you think the LEADS record is for your use and you will use it to harass and intimidate your enemies. Johnny, are you running IP searches on those on this website that say things that you don't like?

    Sickening, just sickening.
    I didn't accuse, or convict this man of anything. That is not my job. I simply noted that based on his comments, he may be a risk to LE. People create most oftheir own problems, and love to blame LE. for their woes. I do not harass or intimidate, and I have no enemies. I simply do my job the best I can.

    People who have commited crimes using a weapon are labeled "may be armed and dangerous". Based on their prior history, does this seem too far fetched?
    If you have to fight, do not fear death. We will all die one day, so fight skillfully and bravely! And if it is to be that you die, then at least go to God proudly. Meet him as the proud warrior that you are, and not as a sniveling coward. Nobody lives forever.

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    Tagging an "approach with caution" warning to someone's otherwise-empty record seems far-fetched... maybe that's just an Ohio-specific way of saying "undesirable" for whatever personal/extraprofessional reasons.

    -ljp

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    Accomplished Advocate color of law's Avatar
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    Johnny Law wrote
    It isn't about "big Brother" collecting info, it's about YOU showing society what you're made of. If you want to be thought of as an a.h., then all you have to do is act like one. If you want to be perceived as a reasonable, respectableperson, then your actions and comments will determine that. It is your freedom toinfluence how people view you.
    Good try, but it does not work. You think you are BIG BROTHER and you can enter anything you don't like what someone says into Big Brother's computer databank and start the ball rolling to distroy someones life just because you don't like what they say. Wher did you learn this underhanded stuff? Are you the guy that got picked on in school and now you are going to get even?

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    Regular Member Johnny Law's Avatar
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    Legba wrote:
    Tagging an "approach with caution" warning to someone's otherwise-empty record seems far-fetched... maybe that's just an Ohio-specific way of saying "undesirable" for whatever personal/extraprofessional reasons.

    -ljp
    I agree. I would certainly inquire as to why this placed in the system. if there is no valid reason given, thenI would demand it be removed. Also a sidenote; a juvenile record even if expunged, can still be viewed by LE and the courts. It cannot however be accessed by the public during background checks etc.
    If you have to fight, do not fear death. We will all die one day, so fight skillfully and bravely! And if it is to be that you die, then at least go to God proudly. Meet him as the proud warrior that you are, and not as a sniveling coward. Nobody lives forever.

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    Regular Member Johnny Law's Avatar
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    color of law wrote:
    Johnny Law wrote
    It isn't about "big Brother" collecting info, it's about YOU showing society what you're made of. If you want to be thought of as an a.h., then all you have to do is act like one. If you want to be perceived as a reasonable, respectableperson, then your actions and comments will determine that. It is your freedom toinfluence how people view you.
    Good try, but it does not work. You think you are BIG BROTHER and you can enter anything you don't like what someone says into Big Brother's computer databank and start the ball rolling to distroy someones life just because you don't like what they say. Wher did you learn this underhanded stuff? Are you the guy that got picked on in school and now you are going to get even?
    Color of law,

    I only enter pertinent officer safety info, and certainly am not out to ruin anyone's life. People do that to themselves.

    There is no "start the ball rolling". All this info does is assist Officers in dealing with potential "problem children", as it is not used by anyone else for any purpose. I am not the one with a chip on my shoulder.
    If you have to fight, do not fear death. We will all die one day, so fight skillfully and bravely! And if it is to be that you die, then at least go to God proudly. Meet him as the proud warrior that you are, and not as a sniveling coward. Nobody lives forever.

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    Accomplished Advocate color of law's Avatar
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    Johnny Law wrote:
    color of law wrote:
    Tomahawk wrote:
    Johnny Law wrote:
    I personally once overheard a gentleman talking at a local gun show to another man. He said that if he ever saw the Police coming up his driveway, he would shoot them all. I was able to discern his identity and address, and logged this info into a database for future reference.

    Now I know Johnny Law's motives. If you ain't with us, your against us. You, Johnny, are the problem in this country. You think you are judge and jury. You have the power to distroy someones life and you will if someone says something you don't like. So you think the LEADS record is for your use and you will use it to harass and intimidate your enemies. Johnny, are you running IP searches on those on this website that say things that you don't like?

    Sickening, just sickening.
    I didn't accuse, or convict this man of anything. That is not my job. I simply noted that based on his comments, he may be a risk to LE. People create most oftheir own problems, and love to blame LE. for their woes. I do not harass or intimidate, and I have no enemies. I simply do my job the best I can.

    People who have commited crimes using a weapon are labeled "may be armed and dangerous". Based on their prior history, does this seem too far fetched?
    Is there more to the story than you are telling us? You said: "I personally once overheard a gentleman talking at a local gun show to another man. He said that if he ever saw the Police coming up his driveway, he would shoot them all. I was able to discern his identity and address, and logged this info into a database for future reference."

    Was this guy you overheard a criminal? What prompted you to enter this info into Big Brorther's database? You must have known him to do that. Or did you say something he didn't like and he told you were he stood?

    I got problems with what you are saying.



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    Johnny Law wrote:
    Legba wrote:
    Tagging an "approach with caution" warning to someone's otherwise-empty record seems far-fetched... maybe that's just an Ohio-specific way of saying "undesirable" for whatever personal/extraprofessional reasons.

    -ljp
    I agree. I would certainly inquire as to why this placed in the system. if there is no valid reason given, thenI would demand it be removed. Also a sidenote; a juvenile record even if expunged, can still be viewed by LE and the courts. It cannot however be accessed by the public during background checks etc.
    Yeah, I had a minor misdemeanor underaged drinking/pot smoking delinquency charge as a teenager (yes, I inhaled). Not a big deal even if it hadn't been expunged. Hardly justification for this warning notice. I have no way to find out where the warning came from though, and there it remains. Eerie, especially given the partial (read harsher) treatment certain LEOs have shown me over it. My recent arrest met with the police grilling me over it (you guys put it there - don't ask me). I'm curious how one might get such a notation stricken from the record, without knowing where it came from or why. I've pretty much reconciled myself to letting the police wonder what it's about as well. With no conviction record, it amounts to housewife's gossip. Rather hard to appeal that.

    -ljp

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    color of law wrote:
    Is there more to the story than you are telling us? You said: "I personally once overheard a gentleman talking at a local gun show to another man. He said that if he ever saw the Police coming up his driveway, he would shoot them all. I was able to discern his identity and address, and logged this info into a database for future reference."

    Was this guy you overheard a criminal? What prompted you to enter this info into Big Brorther's database? You must have known him to do that. Or did you say something he didn't like and he told you were he stood?

    I got problems with what you are saying.


    I could not say at the time if he was or wasn't a criminal, but that was not the critical issue. He specifically said (in a very serious tone) that he would shoot any cops that happened onto his property for whatever reason. I found that to be very disturbing, as myself or fellow Officers could well be the one's who unknowingly respond to his residence one day for whatever reason.

    I did not know the guy, and did not speak to him. I simply overheard him. Also I was not in uniform, so he was not "throwing it in my face".
    If you have to fight, do not fear death. We will all die one day, so fight skillfully and bravely! And if it is to be that you die, then at least go to God proudly. Meet him as the proud warrior that you are, and not as a sniveling coward. Nobody lives forever.

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    Accomplished Advocate color of law's Avatar
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    Legba, I hope you asked for the LEADS file in your discovery. You want to know who made that statement. The Supreme Court has said you have a right to face your accuser. If the cops used the info in the LEADS file you have a right to it.

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    color of law wrote:
    Tomahawk wrote:
    Johnny Law wrote:
    I personally once overheard a gentleman talking at a local gun show to another man. He said that if he ever saw the Police coming up his driveway, he would shoot them all. I was able to discern his identity and address, and logged this info into a database for future reference.

    Now I know Johnny Law's motives. If you ain't with us, your against us. You, Johnny, are the problem in this country. You think you are judge and jury. You have the power to distroy someones life and you will if someone says something you don't like. So you think the LEADS record is for your use and you will use it to harass and intimidate your enemies. Johnny, are you running IP searches on those on this website that say things that you don't like?

    Sickening, just sickening.
    Let's be careful before judging Johnny Law. Let's take a look at what the sheriff said:
    However, the sheriff declined to provide a single instance of the father's illegal behavior. "I can't tell you specifically," he said.

    Now this is important. The sheriff has not bothered to document this guy's supposed threats toward law enforcement. What Johnny Law has done is to document a threat, purely for safety reasons.

    When the system fails and Cho shoots up VT, we blame the system for not documenting any warning signs. Johnny Law has not even gone as far as to document anything officially, just to add a warning note in their system.

    Now if officers went to serve a legitimate warrant on this man, and he ended up shooting them all and making a high-profile news story, surrounded by cries for an assault weapon ban, and you all found out that Johnny Law had heard him plotting his strategy at a gun show, wouldn't we be upset that he hadn't made a note of it in their system?

    We aren't talking about little idle conversations being used against us, we are talking about someone plotting to murder police officers. There is a big difference. If this guy made his way into some police system with a red flag, it is his own fault for being so public about his violent stance toward law enforcement, not some big-brother crackdown.

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    color: This annotation to my "record" was before and unrelated to my recent arrest. Discovery won't produce any useful info on these lines. It's not anything that rises to the level of evidence or an aggravating circumstance anyway. We do have a prelim suppression hearing, and maybe we can broach the subject then if they claim that this gave them PC to accost me in the 1st place. Nobody has claimed that so far, so we'll see.

    (Sorry - not trying to hijack the thread.)

    -ljp

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    Accomplished Advocate color of law's Avatar
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    Johnny Law wrote:
    color of law wrote:
    Is there more to the story than you are telling us? You said: "I personally once overheard a gentleman talking at a local gun show to another man. He said that if he ever saw the Police coming up his driveway, he would shoot them all. I was able to discern his identity and address, and logged this info into a database for future reference."

    Was this guy you overheard a criminal? What prompted you to enter this info into Big Brorther's database? You must have known him to do that. Or did you say something he didn't like and he told you were he stood?

    I got problems with what you are saying.


    I could not say at the time if he was or wasn't a criminal, but that was not the critical issue. He specifically said (in a very serious tone) that he would shoot any cops that happened onto his property for whatever reason. I found that to be very disturbing, as myself or fellow Officers could well be the one's who unknowingly respond to his residence one day for whatever reason.

    I did not know the guy, and did not speak to him. I simply overheard him. Also I was not in uniform, so he was not "throwing it in my face".
    I am working on a case right now where the LEADS file had a guy listed as posably armed and dangerous. The cops came into his back yard and through him to the ground and tayzered him. There excuse, he was cooking on his grill and there was a complaint about smoke. The guy has had one ticket in his life. He was charged with obstruction of justice and resisting arrest. The cop that placed this info into the LEADS file and the cops that acted on it will being paying a heavy price for their actions. Or I should say the city will be paying the price.

    That untrue information placed in the computer has basically distroyed his life. Does he trust cops, not any more.

  24. #24
    Accomplished Advocate color of law's Avatar
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    The problem is Johnny Law posted something into the LEADS file that could be acted upon in a negative way. Over reaction by others. That's the problem.

  25. #25
    State Researcher .40 Cal's Avatar
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    Johnny Law wrote:
    All this info does is assist Officers in dealing with potential "problem children", as it is not used by anyone else for any purpose.
    I have only one set of parents. How do you determine someone has the potential to be a problem to you?

    As far as the original post, we don't know if this man has had instances that have put him on the business end of a police inquiry. He may have a history, but that doesn't mean the entire incident wasn't blown completely out of proportion. There was no need for the SWAT involvement. This sounds like someone called in a favor to teach the "trailer trash veteran" a lesson.

    Our country needs help. We need a high pressure colonic to remove people like this magistrate (and cops who think they can calllabel people based on an exercise of their 1st am right) right out of their positions of pseudo power.

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