I KNOW DAMNED WELL THAT MANY POLICE MEN AND THE LIKE ARE GOOD.
PLEASE STEP UP!!!! THE TIME IS NOW!!!!!
I BEG OF YOU.
I KNOW DAMNED WELL THAT MANY POLICE MEN AND THE LIKE ARE GOOD.
PLEASE STEP UP!!!! THE TIME IS NOW!!!!!
I BEG OF YOU.
In light of the recent disappearance of Hannah Graham from Charlottesville, Va., USA TODAY Network looks at the numbers of missing people from the FBI’s National Crime Information Center, NCIC. Unless otherwise noted, these data are accurate as of Sept. 1.
At any given moment, there are as many as 90,000 missing persons in the U.S. (Photo: USA TODAY)
60% of missing people are adults over 18. (Photo: USA TODAY)
40% of missing persons are juveniles. (Photo: USA TODAY)
52% of missing persons are male. (Photo: USA TODAY)
48% of all missing persons are female. (Photo: USA TODAY)
56% of missing persons are white. (Photo: USA TODAY)
Among missing persons in the U.S., African Americans are overrepresented. They make up 33 % of overall missing persons while they represent 13% of the total U.S. population. (Photo: USA TODAY)
The race of 7% of missing persons is not specified. (Photo: USA TODAY)
2% of missing persons are Native American. (Photo: USA TODAY)
This average was found by reviewing the last 10 years of data from the NCIC database. (Photo: USA TODAY)
More than 600,000 missing people were reported in 2013. (Photo: USA TODAY)
In 2004, there were 830,325 missing persons entered into the NCIC database. (Photo: USA TODAY)
“The first 12-24 hours are the most critical in an active missing persons investigation,” Amy Dobbs, an investigator with the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, told USA TODAY Network. “The longer it takes for a case to be reported and become an active investigation, the less likely a positive outcome will occur.”
For children, the first three hours are especially critical because 76% of abducted children who are killed die within that time frame, according to a 2006 study by the Washington State Attorney General’s Office.
If someone you know is missing, call 911 and report it as quickly as possible, Dobbs said. There is no mandatory time period that you need to wait to file a missing persons report. You can also report the missing person to NamUs, which will verify the information with law enforcement and list it on the NamUs site.
Posted on August 30, 2016 by Baxter Dmitry in News, World
An increasingly number of people are waking up to the fact that 99% of the Earth’s population is controlled by an elite 1% – but did you know that one family, the Rothschilds, rule everything, even that elite 1%?
Behind the scenes the Rothschild dynasty is unquestionably the most powerful bloodline on Earth and their estimated wealth is around $500 trillion.
Here is a complete list of all Rothschild owned and controlled banks. The U.S. entries might surprise you.
The Anonymous campaign against the global banking cartel, OpIcarus: Shut Down The Banks, is gaining momentum as nine Rothschild owned central banks were taken offline after the hacking collective identified the global financial system as the “power behind the throne” of the New World Order, and issued a global call to arms to fight the financial system that is enslaving us.
Anonymous Hackers Take 9 Rothschild Central Banks Offline
Rothschild Banks Have Their Eyes Set On Iran’s Central Bank
Afghanistan: Bank of Afghanistan
Albania: Bank of Albania
Algeria: Bank of Algeria
Argentina: Central Bank of Argentina
Armenia: Central Bank of Armenia
Aruba: Central Bank of Aruba
Australia: Reserve Bank of Australia
Austria: Austrian National Bank
Azerbaijan: Central Bank of Azerbaijan Republic
Bahamas: Central Bank of The Bahamas
Bahrain: Central Bank of Bahrain
Bangladesh: Bangladesh Bank
Barbados: Central Bank of Barbados
Belarus: National Bank of the Republic of Belarus
Belgium: National Bank of Belgium
Belize: Central Bank of Belize
Benin: Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO)
Bermuda: Bermuda Monetary Authority
Bhutan: Royal Monetary Authority of Bhutan
Bolivia: Central Bank of Bolivia
Bosnia: Central Bank of Bosnia and Herzegovina
Botswana: Bank of Botswana
Brazil: Central Bank of Brazil
Bulgaria: Bulgarian National Bank
Burkina Faso: Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO)
Burundi: Bank of the Republic of Burundi
Cambodia: National Bank of Cambodia
Came Roon: Bank of Central African States
Canada: Bank of Canada – Banque du Canada
Cayman Islands: Cayman Islands Monetary Authority
Central African Republic: Bank of Central African States
Chad: Bank of Central African States
Chile: Central Bank of Chile
China: The People’s Bank of China
Colombia: Bank of the Republic
Comoros: Central Bank of Comoros
Congo: Bank of Central African States
Costa Rica: Central Bank of Costa Rica
Côte d’Ivoire: Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO)
Croatia: Croatian National Bank
Cuba: Central Bank of Cuba
Cyprus: Central Bank of Cyprus
Czech Republic: Czech National Bank
Denmark: National Bank of Denmark
Dominican Republic: Central Bank of the Dominican Republic
East Caribbean area: Eastern Caribbean Central Bank
Ecuador: Central Bank of Ecuador
Egypt: Central Bank of Egypt
El Salvador: Central Reserve Bank of El Salvador
Equatorial Guinea: Bank of Central African States
Estonia: Bank of Estonia
Ethiopia: National Bank of Ethiopia
European Union: European Central Bank
Fiji: Reserve Bank of Fiji
Finland: Bank of Finland
France: Bank of France
Gabon: Bank of Central African States
The Gambia: Central Bank of The Gambia
Georgia: National Bank of Georgia
Germany: Deutsche Bundesbank
Ghana: Bank of Ghana
Greece: Bank of Greece
Guatemala: Bank of Guatemala
Guinea Bissau: Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO)
Guyana: Bank of Guyana
Haiti: Central Bank of Haiti
Honduras: Central Bank of Honduras
Hong Kong: Hong Kong Monetary Authority
Hungary: Magyar Nemzeti Bank
Iceland: Central Bank of Iceland
India: Reserve Bank of India
Indonesia: Bank Indonesia
Iran: The Central Bank of the Islamic Republic of Iran
Iraq: Central Bank of Iraq
Ireland: Central Bank and Financial Services Authority of Ireland
Israel: Bank of Israel
Italy: Bank of Italy
Jamaica: Bank of Jamaica
Japan: Bank of Japan
Jordan: Central Bank of Jordan
Kazakhstan: National Bank of Kazakhstan
Kenya: Central Bank of Kenya
Korea: Bank of Korea
Kuwait: Central Bank of Kuwait
Kyrgyzstan: National Bank of the Kyrgyz Republic
Latvia: Bank of Latvia
Lebanon: Central Bank of Lebanon
Lesotho: Central Bank of Lesotho
Libya: Central Bank of Libya (Their most recent conquest)
Uruguay: Central Bank of Uruguay
Lithuania: Bank of Lithuania
Luxembourg: Central Bank of Luxembourg
Macao: Monetary Authority of Macao
Macedonia: National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia
Madagascar: Central Bank of Madagascar
Malawi: Reserve Bank of Malawi
Malaysia: Central Bank of Malaysia
Mali: Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO)
Malta: Central Bank of Malta
Mauritius: Bank of Mauritius
Mexico: Bank of Mexico
Moldova: National Bank of Moldova
Mongolia: Bank of Mongolia
Montenegro: Central Bank of Montenegro
Morocco: Bank of Morocco
Mozambique: Bank of Mozambique
Namibia: Bank of Namibia
Nepal: Central Bank of Nepal
Netherlands: Netherlands Bank
Netherlands Antilles: Bank of the Netherlands Antilles
New Zealand: Reserve Bank of New Zealand
Nicaragua: Central Bank of Nicaragua
Niger: Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO)
Nigeria: Central Bank of Nigeria
Norway: Central Bank of Norway
Oman: Central Bank of Oman
Pakistan: State Bank of Pakistan
Papua New Guinea: Bank of Papua New Guinea
Paraguay: Central Bank of Paraguay
Peru: Central Reserve Bank of Peru
Philip Pines: Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas
Poland: National Bank of Poland
Portugal: Bank of Portugal
Qatar: Qatar Central Bank
Romania: National Bank of Romania
Rwanda: National Bank of Rwanda
San Marino: Central Bank of the Republic of San Marino
Samoa: Central Bank of Samoa
Saudi Arabia: Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency
Senegal: Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO)
Serbia: National Bank of Serbia
Seychelles: Central Bank of Seychelles
Sierra Leone: Bank of Sierra Leone
Singapore: Monetary Authority of Singapore
Slovakia: National Bank of Slovakia
Slovenia: Bank of Slovenia
Solomon Islands: Central Bank of Solomon Islands
South Africa: South African Reserve Bank
Spain: Bank of Spain
Sri Lanka: Central Bank of Sri Lanka
Sudan: Bank of Sudan
Surinam: Central Bank of Suriname
Swaziland: The Central Bank of Swaziland
Sweden: Sveriges Riksbank
Switzerland: Swiss National Bank
Tajikistan: National Bank of Tajikistan
Tanzania: Bank of Tanzania
Thailand: Bank of Thailand
Togo: Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO)
Tonga: National Reserve Bank of Tonga
Trinidad and Tobago: Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago
Tunisia: Central Bank of Tunisia
Turkey: Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey
Uganda: Bank of Uganda
Ukraine: National Bank of Ukraine
United Arab Emirates: Central Bank of United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom: Bank of England
United States: Federal Reserve, Federal Reserve Bank of New York
Vanuatu: Reserve Bank of Vanuatu
Venezuela: Central Bank of Venezuela
Vietnam: The State Bank of Vietnam
Yemen: Central Bank of Yemen
Zambia: Bank of Zambia
Zimbabwe: Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe
BY JONATHAN KAMINSKY
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 1, 2011 AT 4:30 A.M.
Sergeant Vince Ariaz liked what he saw in 15-year-old “Maggie.” Eager to please, in awe of police work and seeking a trustworthy authority figure in her life, the shy brunette was an ideal fit for the Brownwood, Texas, Police Department’s Explorer program.
With nearly 2,000 law-enforcement Explorer posts and upward of 32,000 14- to 21-year-olds participating in the Boy Scouts–affiliated program each year, Maggie had entered a primary gateway into American law enforcement. The paunchy, gregarious 53-year-old sergeant who’d been running Brownwood’s Explorer program since its inception took pains to make her feel special. Rapidly promoting her through the ranks, he promised to get her into the police academy when she was of age. Soon, he was taking her on ride-alongs nearly every night.
One morning in June 2007, six months into Maggie’s tenure, another Brownwood cop saw the girl—too young to have a driver’s license—at the wheel of Ariaz’s squad car. Uneasy, he contacted a Texas Ranger, John Nick Hanna, who was in the midst of a months-long investigation of Ariaz over allegations of sexual abuse.
Ariaz had been suspected of it for years. In 2004, according to court records, a 15-year-old Explorer told Brownwood Police Chief Virgil Cowin that Ariaz had forced himself on her one night when they were alone in the station house, kissing her, fondling her breasts and fingering her vagina. Cowin also knew of text messages Ariaz had sent the girl bragging about the size of his penis and how he intended to use it on her.
“You’re just a child,” the girl recalls Cowin telling her. “You’re just making it up.” Her complaint went nowhere.
Hanna’s investigation, meanwhile, had been similarly stalled. Jolted to action by the new information, however, he soon learned that Ariaz took Maggie out several nights per week, often parking his car for hours at a time at known make-out spots. With a go-ahead from his superiors, Hanna set up a hidden camera. For five nights, he watched as the sergeant kissed and groped Maggie, but he held off until he had his smoking gun. Finally, after watching Ariaz go down on the girl, he swooped in for the arrest.
The eyebrow-raising decision to use an unwitting 15-year-old girl as bait for a serial sexual abuser—over which a multimillion-dollar lawsuit, naming the Texas Rangers, the local prosecutor and the Brown County Sheriff’s Office as defendants, was filed earlier this year—is atypical. But police officers having sex with Explorers is not.
In recent decades, more than 100 police officers have had sex with Explorers they were entrusted with mentoring, the vast majority of whom were underage. In just the past year, two sheriff’s deputies in San Bernardino were arrested for having sex with underage girls; a New York City cop was charged with child sexual abuse after sending racy text messages to a 15- year-old; an officer in Bremerton, Washington, was reprimanded for sleeping with an 18- year-old; and a former cop in Burlington, North Carolina, pled guilty to taking indecent liberties with a minor after being accused of having sex with a 14-year-old he’d taken on ride- alongs.
The Explorer program is administered by Learning for Life, a Boy Scouts of America subsidiary formed in 1991. Its programs, which extend far beyond law enforcement, provide more than 110,000 young people each year the chance to see firsthand workplaces in fields ranging from aviation to architecture to the law. The organization’s mission, says Learning for Life executive director Diane Thornton (who for the purposes of this article responded only to questions submitted in writing), is to “enable young people to become responsible individuals by teaching positive character traits, career development, leadership and life skills so they can make moral choices and achieve their full potential.”
The exact number of exploited Explorers is not known. (For a list of known cases, see the interactive feature accompanying this article HERE.) And Thornton won’t say whether Learning for Life tracks sexual-abuse cases against Explorers, nor would she comment on why the vast majority of those cases involves police officers. “We do not release that type of information,” she wrote.
Learning for Life, Thornton says, has sought to reduce instances of Explorer sexual abuse— which she characterizes as “very rare”—limiting one-on-one contact between mentors and Explorers, banning non-work relationships, and requiring those who work with Explorers to watch a 20-minute training video.
“The protection of all youth in Learning for Life programs is of paramount importance, and Learning for Life views any abuse of youth as unacceptable,” says Thornton.
But a review of Explorer sexual abuses dating back to the 1970s shows that the Boy Scouts
But a review of Explorer sexual abuses dating back to the 1970s shows that the Boy Scouts
and Learning for Life waited years to enact rules barring inappropriate contact between police and Explorers. And despite these rules being in place, the Boy Scouts and Learning for Life have not enforced them, mostly leaving police departments to police themselves.
“Learning for Life should expect police chiefs to follow commonsense rules protecting Explorers,” says police-accountability expert Jeffrey Noble, a believer in the Explorer program’s benefits. “If they become aware their rules aren’t being followed, should they refuse to allow that department to have an Explorer program? Absolutely. Shame on them if they don’t.”
The luster was long gone from Hollywood’s star when, in the mid-1970s, the first Law Enforcement Explorer Girls (or LEEGs, as they were more commonly known at the time) appeared in the Los Angeles Police Department’s rundown Tinseltown outpost. A couple of dozen strong, they were among the first girls allowed into Explorers, a Boy Scouts career- preparation program dating to the 1940s. The LEEGs trailed cops as they patrolled the neon- lit expanses of porn shops, massage parlors and peep shows on their beats. They occasionally helped control event crowds and assisted with station-house desk work.
As a token of appreciation, the Hollywood cops began taking the Explorer girls, most of them 15 and 16 years old, on overnight, weekend camping trips. The tradition endured for more than two years, until the autumn of 1976, when one of the girls, uncomfortable with the campsite activities, complained to department higher-ups. The camping trips, she reported, were little more than orgies.
When the news broke, the task of handling the ensuing media onslaught fell to an up-and- coming deputy chief named Daryl Gates, who later gained notoriety as the unsympathetic public face of the LAPD during the Rodney King affair. He was quick to dismiss the severity of what had occurred among his Hollywood cops and the girls they were tasked with mentoring. First of all, he told a scrum of reporters, this was not a sex scandal. “There was no rape, no seduction,” he said. “There was a lot of agreement.”
Ultimately, it was found that at least six cops had had sex with at least 16 teenaged Explorers. While some officers involved were fired, others remained in their jobs. The first publicly known case of its kind, it remains among the largest in terms of the number of cops and Explorers involved. But it wouldn’t be the last.
Over the next decade, a handful of new cases would come to light, all in California. But
Over the next decade, a handful of new cases would come to light, all in California. But
police misconduct, was researching a follow-up to a report he’d published a year earlier. In
though an underage Signal Hill Police Department Explorer told of having sex with four officers who’d mentored her over three years ending in 1982, and six sheriff’s deputies were fired for sleeping with the same 17-year-old girl in Victorville two years later, the Boy Scouts remained untouched by the fallout.
That would grow more difficult in 1987. That February, Lieutenant Robert Padilla of the Long Beach Police Department met a 16-year-old Explorer while she was on desk duty. The middle-aged lieutenant and the teenager hit it off, and he invited her to his house. Twice that month, they had sex. In March, after their tryst had been exposed, Padilla was fired from his job, arrested and eventually placed on probation.
Chastened, the department put in place rules governing the Explorer program. They forbade fraternization between police officers and Explorers, barred female Explorers from riding along with male officers, placed limits on the frequency with which Explorers were allowed to ride along, and put a higher-up in charge of overseeing ride-along pairings. As the department got its house in order, the Boy Scouts emphasized the anomalous nature of what had happened.
“This is an isolated incident,” Kurt Weaver, scout executive of the Long Beach Area Council of the Boy Scouts, told a reporter at the time—though, in fact, it was one of three such incidents that had come to light in a three-month period, all in Southern California.
In January 1987, Sergeant Robert Kredel, in charge of the Irvine PD’s Explorer program, resigned after being accused of molesting a 15-year-old boy during an Explorer camping trip the previous fall, reportedly leaving the boy suicidal. Two months later, Officer Timothy Campbell of the Simi Valley PD was charged with sexually assaulting a 16-year-old female Explorer. Amid assertions that two other Simi Valley officers had also had sex with the girl— including a detective specializing in sex crimes and child-abuse cases who was soon fired— that city’s police department considered enacting rules similar to those in Long Beach.
Meanwhile, Hollis Spindle, a Boy Scouts executive in Ventura County, provided insight into his organization’s approach to such incidents. “This rarely happens, so we have no guidelines,” he told the Los Angeles Times. “We can’t have a policy that people will not meet and talk with each other when they are not in an Explorer activity. We can’t stop people from being people.”
In 2003, Samuel Walker, a professor at the University of Nebraska and a leading scholar on
police misconduct, was researching a follow-up to a report he’d published a year earlier. In “Driving While Female,” Walker had shed light on the phenomenon of police officers sexually harassing and assaulting women they’d pulled over for traffic infractions. He reported discovering an average of nearly 20 cases per year of police officers doing everything from forcing women to walk home in their underwear to raping them in their cars after pulling them over. His findings, he said, were “clearly the tip of the iceberg.”
As Walker scoured the Internet to prepare an update, he stumbled upon a different trend: police officers sexually assaulting Explorers. “Just by changing around the search terms, we were able to find a large number of these cases,” he says.
The report that grew out of his online meanderings, “Police Sexual Abuse of Teenage Girls,” co-authored by graduate student Dawn Irlbeck, uncovered a “disturbing pattern” of cops sexually exploiting female (and, to a lesser degree, male) Explorers.
Among the cases Walker highlighted was one from 1998 in Largo, Florida, in which an officer accused of having sex with a 16-year-old girl killed himself. “I’m not the only person who’s having sex with a minor at the Police Department,” the officer wrote in his suicide note. “They really need to tighten up the rules with those Explorers.”
Largo’s police chief initially dismissed claims of a wider scandal as groundless. But an outside investigator subsequently found that at least 11 Largo cops had had sex with Explorers, dating back to the late 1980s.
The following year, in Eureka, Missouri, Walker reported, an internal investigation was launched into two officers accused of having sex with a 16-year-old female Explorer whom they’d taken on ride-alongs. The investigating officer, evidently intent on re-enacting the crime, then took the girl on a ride-along of his own, during which he also had sex with her.
And in a case that came to light the year of Walker’s report, David Kalish, who had risen to the rank of deputy chief of the LAPD, was accused of molesting at least six boys he’d supervised when they were LAPD Explorers in the 1970s. One accuser said Kalish had forced him to perform oral sex in his squad car while the two were in uniform.
In all, Walker listed 32 cases of police officers sexually exploiting Explorers, many involving multiple officers, multiple Explorers, or both. Many more cases had surely eluded his radar, he said, either because they were never reported, were hushed up, or simply didn’t appear in his online searches.
After the Associated Press reported his findings, Walker used the ensuing attention to take
After the Associated Press reported his findings, Walker used the ensuing attention to take
police departments to task. Appearing on CNN in June 2003, he told a righteously outraged Bill Hemmer, “There appears to be a real pattern of abuse across the country. What I think it indicates is a failure of police departments to supervise these programs . . . and really investigate allegations of misconduct.”
That evening, Anderson Cooper interviewed a 16-year-old former Explorer from San Diego who had been seduced by an officer she’d gone with on frequent ride-alongs. “I don’t want to hear this ever happening again,” “Jane” told Cooper, her face blurred to conceal her identity. “This wouldn’t have happened if they would have done their jobs.”
Spared from the public shaming was the organization charged with overseeing the program. In 1991, under fire for its long-standing policy of not allowing atheists, homosexuals, or girls among its ranks, the Boy Scouts spun off the Explorer program into a more-inclusive subsidiary it named Learning for Life. Scouting officials described the move as the natural evolution of a fast-growing segment of its organization that had aims separate from the core mission of instilling traditional values in American boys. Critics smelled a different plot: at once inoculating a popular program from the legal challenges besetting the Boy Scouts while providing political cover for the organization as a whole.
Whatever the motivations, it would take Learning for Life years to begin imposing Explorer safety standards on police departments. The organization’s “Safety First” policy, with a blanket ban on fraternization between cops and Explorers and limits placed on ride-alongs, first appeared on Learning for Life’s website in 2002. (Thornton says Learning for Life barred underage Explorers from going on overnight ride-alongs starting in the mid-1990s, declining to specify further. She refused to say whether its no-fraternization rule went into effect before 2002.) Learning for Life had all but ripped the weathered page from the Long Beach PD’s manual—the same rules that, years earlier, Boy Scouts official Spindle had dismissed as unrealistic.
Summoning the courage to enforce the new rules would prove to be another matter. ***
As Walker broadcast his warning to the public, a 27-year-old cop two months into his career at the Bremerton, Oregon, Police Department was getting to know a shy, immature 19-year- old volunteering there as an Explorer. Over the following months, in the hours spent on ride- alongs in his squad car, Officer Kelly Meade and “Bethany” progressed in stages from flirty conversation to a stolen kiss to heavy petting. Eventually, they started having sex.
In February 2004, their passionate emails intercepted, they came clean to department investigators about their liaison. Bremerton’s then-police chief, Robert Forbes, reprimanded Meade in writing that though Bethany was of age, the officer had brought shame upon himself, the department and the Explorer program by sleeping with her. “You were in a position of power and apparent, if not actual, authority,” Forbes wrote, sparks all but flying from his keyboard. Bethany, he added, “continued to refer to you by your title as an officer, not by your first name.”
Forbes then handed down a 10-day suspension without pay. Meade, claiming ignorance of the no-fraternization policy, filed an appeal. Bremerton’s rule prohibiting outside relationships between cops and Explorers had been created just as Meade and Bethany were getting acquainted—after the supervisor in charge of the Explorers, having heard about Walker’s report, decided to update the Explorer manual. But the same language never made it into the department’s official rule book.
Citing that oversight, an arbitrator found that Meade hadn’t been properly informed and reduced his punishment to a written reprimand. Bethany wasn’t so lucky. Expelled from the Explorers, her career in law enforcement was over before it began.
Six years later, when an outgoing 18-year-old brunette with chipmunk cheeks and a fondness for police officers signed up as an Explorer, the integrity of Bremerton’s police department would again be put to the test. “Natalie” quickly made an immediate impression on both the departmental rank-and-file and the top brass, friending officers on Facebook, chatting with them online and going on ride-alongs as often as she could.
Having built up her online network, Natalie sought to hang out with her new police friends away from work. One officer took her to dinner and a movie, invited her over, and allowed her to spend the night in his bed, but denied having sex with her. Another, Captain Tom Wolfe, took Natalie to a pizza joint, where he was seen caressing her inner thigh in public (an assertion he denies), and gave her special assignments that allowed her to bring home confidential paperwork. A third officer, Brandon Greenhill, admitted to inviting Natalie to his house while his wife was out of town and, as a movie played on TV, having sex with her.
The first officer, along with four others suspected of improper relations with Natalie, was cleared of wrongdoing by a subsequent department investigation. Wolfe and Greenhill were found to have broken department rules. But because the no-fraternization policy still hadn’t made it into the department’s official rule book, both officers, just as Meade before them, received nothing more than written reprimands. As happened to Bethany, Natalie was kicked out of the program.
The investigation did yield one positive result: The department’s rule book has since been updated. It is now officially forbidden for Bremerton cops to sleep with Explorers.
“To have an incident like that and not have policies in place is inexcusable,” says Jeffrey Noble, the police-accountability expert. “But then it happens again? That is outrageous. Someone is asleep at the wheel.”
In the years since Walker’s report brought police-on-Explorer sex into the open, Bremerton has not been the only department faced with an embarrassing lack of leadership.
In Tualatin, Oregon, the extent of an Explorer sex case—the second such case in the small department in recent years—that included a female Explorer, three officers and a state patrolman was not revealed until The Oregonian undertook a months-long investigation. It found that at least a third of Tualatin’s 36-member police force had known of the abuse for years before any action was taken.
Two years ago in Madison, Connecticut, police chief Paul Jakubson resigned after an outside investigation found he had “deliberately and repeatedly ignored, condoned and thereby facilitated sexual misconduct” for more than a decade. In addition to turning a blind eye to his officers’ having sex with prostitutes, Jakubson allegedly reversed a lieutenant’s decision barring an officer from repeatedly taking an underage Explorer on ride-alongs, thereby allowing that officer to continue to have sex with the girl unimpeded.
And earlier this year in San Bernardino, it took months for a complaint from an administrator at a 15-year-old Explorer’s school that a sheriff’s deputy had an unusually close relationship with her to result in an investigation that quickly found they’d been sleeping together all along. The inquiry found that another deputy was also having sex with a different Explorer. Both men were fired and face criminal charges. A third deputy suspected of similar behavior was allowed to remain in his job.
In a locked, fireproof cabinet at their national headquarters in Irving, Texas, sits a carefully maintained record of the Boy Scouts’ most shameful secrets. “The perversion files,” as they’re known within the organization, hold the names of more than 5,000 suspected child molesters dating back to the 1940s. The documents gained public notice last year, when a former scout from Oregon, suing the Boy Scouts for hushing up his troop leader’s serial molestations in the
from Oregon, suing the Boy Scouts for hushing up his troop leader’s serial molestations in the
1980s, successfully fought to get six boxes of the files—containing the names of some 1,200 suspected pedophiles—entered into evidence. A coalition of news organizations has since sued to make those files public. Citing privacy concerns, the Boy Scouts have resisted. The case is now before Oregon’s Supreme Court.
Whether the Boy Scouts keep similar records for the Explorer program is not a question the organization is willing to answer. The same culture of secrecy and scandal-aversion that has earned unflattering comparisons to the Catholic Church appears to be at work at Learning for Life. Beyond the organization’s opacity is the matter of how it deals with police departments that have proven themselves incapable of keeping their officers’ hands off their Explorers. When asked if Learning for Life has expelled, suspended, or reprimanded any police department with an Explorer program for failing to uphold its rules, Thornton declined to answer directly. “[Police] departments investigate and take appropriate action to help insure the quality of the Exploring program and the safety of the youth in those programs,” she responded. “If needed, city and county officials would also get involved.”
Ceding oversight to the police departments and whatever local authorities they answer to may be a sound legal strategy, says Patrick Boyle, author of Scout’s Honor, a book detailing
cases of sexual abuse within the Boy Scouts. But it is disappointingly hands-off. “In a program that pushes kids to go above and beyond,” he says, “the kids would be better served if their leaders went above and beyond, too.”
Judith Cohen, a Temple University psychology professor specializing in youth sexual abuse, is more blunt. “Before [Learning for Life] has any more kids enroll [as Explorers], they should take a very systematic look at the problems and why they’re arising,” she says. “You can’t just trust the police departments and hope for the best.”
Maggie, the Explorer abused by former Sergeant Vince Ariaz in Texas in 2007, is a prime example of who suffers when Learning for Life cedes oversight of its program to locals, says her lawyer, Jeffrey Edwards. “Every person that was supposed to look out for her not only failed, but also really turned their back on her,” he says. “In this case, the authorities were notified. They just didn’t do their job.”
This article appeared in print as “Hands-On Experience: Dozens of teenage Explorers have been sexually abused by police officers. Critics say the Boy Scouts, who oversee the program, should share the blame.”
©2016 OC Weekly, LP. All rights reserved.
BETRAYED BY THE BADGE
EDITOR’S NOTE: A yearlong Associated Press investigation revealed in November 2015 a nationwide problem of sex assault and sexual misconduct by law enforcement officers. The investigation was triggered by the case of former Oklahoma City police officer Daniel Holtzclaw, who on Jan. 21, 2016, was sentenced to 263 years in prison for raping and sexually victimizing eight of his 13 female accusers.
By Matt Sedensky and Nomaan Merchant FPublished: Nov. 1, 2015
lashing lights pierced the black of night, and the big white letters made clear it was the police. The woman pulled over was a daycare worker in her 50s headed home after playing dominoes with friends. She felt she had nothing to hide, so when the Oklahoma City officer accused her of
erratic driving, she did as directed.
She would later tell a judge she was splayed outside the patrol car for a pat- down and then made to lift her shirt and pull down her pants to prove she wasn’t hiding anything.
She described being ordered to sit in the squad car as the officer towered over her. His gun in sight, she said she pleaded “No, sir” as he unzipped his fly and exposed himself to her with a hurried directive. “Come on,” the woman, identified in police reports as J.L., said she was told before she began giving the officer oral sex. “I don’t have all night.”
The accusations are undoubtedly jolting, and yet they reflect a betrayal of the badge that has been repeated across the country.
A yearlong investigation by The Associated Press has found about 1,000 officers who lost their licenses in a six-year period for rape, sodomy and other sexual assaults; sex crimes that included possession of child pornography; or sexual misconduct such as propositioning citizens or having on-duty intercourse.
The AP’s review at once represents both the most complete examination of such wrongdoing and a sure undercount of the problem, limited by a patchwork of state laws. California and New York, for example, had no records because they have no statewide system for revoking the licenses of officers who commit misconduct. And even among states that provided information, some reported no officers removed for sexual misdeeds even though cases were discovered in news stories or court records.
Bernadette DiPino, police chief in Sarasota, Florida, explains some of the reasons sex misconduct is a problem among law officers.
“It’s happening probably in every law enforcement agency across the country,” said Chief Bernadette DiPino of the Sarasota Police Department in Florida, who helped study the problem for the International Association of Chiefs of Police. “It’s so underreported, and people are scared that if they call and complain about a police officer, they think every other police officer is going to be then out to get them.”
The AP’s review is based on a state-by-state pursuit of records on decertification, the process by which a law enforcement license is revoked. Though nine states and the District of Columbia declined to provide information or said they did not track officer misconduct, decertification records from 41 states were obtained and then dissected to determine whether the cause of revocation involved sexual misconduct.
All told, the AP determined that some 550 officers lost their licenses from 2009 through 2014 for sexual assault, including rape, pat-downs that amounted to groping, and shakedowns in which citizens were extorted into performing favors to avoid arrest. Some 440 other officers were decertified for other sex offenses or misconduct, including child pornography, voyeurism in the guise of police work and consensual but prohibited on-duty intercourse.
About one-third of the decertified officers were accused in incidents involving juveniles.
Overall, the victims were overwhelmingly women and included some of society’s most vulnerable — the poor, the addicted, the young. Others had criminal records, sometimes used by the officers as a means for exploitation. Some were victims of crime who, seeking help, found themselves again targeted by men in uniform.
“ People are scared that if they call and complain
about a police officer, they think every other police officer is going to be then out to get them.”
– Police Chief Bernadette DiPino
The law enforcement officials in these records included state and local police, sheriff’s deputies, prison guards and school resource officers. They represent a fraction of the hundreds of thousands whose jobs are to serve and protect. Nevertheless, the AP’s findings suggest that sexual misconduct is among the most prevalent complaints against law officers.
Recent cases demonstrate the devastation of such depravity.
In Connecticut, William Ruscoe of the Trumbull Police began a 30-month prison term in early 2015 after pleading guilty to the sexual assault of a 17-year-old girl he met through a program for teens interested in law enforcement. Case records detailed advances that began with texts and attempts to kiss and grope the girl. Then one night, Ruscoe brought her back to his home. The victim told investigators that despite telling him no “what felt like 1,000 times,” he removed her clothes, fondled her and forced her to touch him — at one point cuffing her hands.
In Florida, Jonathan Bleiweiss of the Broward Sheriff’s Office was sentenced to a five-year prison term in February 2015 for bullying about 20 immigrant men into sex acts. Prosecutors said he used implied threats of deportation to intimidate the men.
And in New Mexico, Michael Garcia of the Las Cruces Police was sentenced in November 2014 to nine years in federal prison for sexually assaulting a high school police intern.
“ I felt sick and disgusted that a person wearing this badge, lawfully carrying all that power, a
person who I admired and trusted … would harm me in this way.”
– Diana Guerrero
Listen to Guerrero read her letter
Left: Diana Guerrero, now 21, was a 17-year-old intern at the police department in Las Cruces, New Mexico, when she was assaulted by Michael Garcia, a sex crimes detective (AP Photo/Susan Montoya Bryan). Bottom: Guerrero is seen with other EXCEL intern program participants (Handout).
The victim, Diana Guerrero, now 21, said it had been her dream to become a police officer. She was a diligent student, she said, the good kid who’d always done what she was supposed to do. So when Garcia, a sex crimes detective, invited her on a ride-along in the spring of 2011, she happily accepted.
The two visited a crime scene, and then Garcia drove her to a deserted neighborhood, still under construction, where he reached inside her panties and fondled her, then unzipped his own pants and forced her to touch his genitals, according to court records.
“I knew it was against the law and that (Guerrero) did not want me to do it,” Garcia said in a plea agreement with federal prosecutors. “But I did it anyway.”
Guerrero, interviewed in November 2014 by KOB-TV in Albuquerque, explains how her sexual assault by Michael Garcia has impacted her life.
Guerrero said in court that the assault left her feeling “like a piece of trash” and triggered depression and flashbacks.
“I lost my faith in everything, everyone, even in myself,” said Guerrero, who agreed to her name being published. She put plans to study criminal justice on hold and is no longer sure she will ever become a police officer.
Experts on sex assault believe most victims never come forward, and said fears can be compounded if the offender is an officer. Diane Wetendorf, who started a support group in Chicago for victims of officers, recalls the stories of those who did go to authorities: Some women’s homes came under surveillance or their children were intimidated by police. Fellow officers, she said, refused to turn on accused colleagues.
“It starts with the officer denying the allegations — ‘she’s crazy,’ ‘she’s lying,’” she said. “And the other officers say they didn’t see anything, they didn’t hear anything.”
Holtzclaw appears in court in Oklahoma City ahead of his trial (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki).
The issue will be in the spotlight in Oklahoma City when former Officer Daniel Holtzclaw goes to trial, beginning Nov. 2, to face accusations of rape, sexual battery or exploitation of 13 women, including J.L. The AP doesn’t name alleged victims of sexual assault without consent, and J.L. declined to be interviewed. She immediately reported her accusations in June 2014, and detectives launched a wider investigation.
Police eventually assembled a six-month narrative of alleged sex crimes they said started Dec. 20, 2013, with a woman taken into custody and hospitalized while high on angel dust.
Dressed in a hospital gown, her right wrist handcuffed to the bedrail, the woman said Holtzclaw coerced her into performing oral sex, suggesting her cooperation would lead to dropped charges.
“I didn’t think that no one would believe me,” that woman testified at a pretrial hearing. “I feel like all police will work together, and I was scared.”
Syrita Bowen visits “Dead Man’s Curve,” where she says she was sexually assaulted by now-
fired Oklahoma City police officer Daniel Holtzclaw, who is accused in the sexual assault or exploitation of 13 women he encountered while patrolling (AP Photo/Eric Gay).
Holtzclaw, 28, a former football star who is now fired from the Oklahoma City Police Department, has pleaded not guilty. His family has said “the truth of his innocence will be shown in court.” His attorney, Scott Adams, would not respond to requests for comment but indicated in pretrial hearings that he will attack the credibility of the accusers, some of whom had struggled with drugs or previously worked as prostitutes.
The youngest of the accusers, who was 17 when she says Holtzclaw raped her
on her mother’s front porch, said the attack left her unsure about what to do.
“Like, what am I going to do?” she said at the pretrial hearing. “Call the cops? He was a cop.”
Officer sex cases plagued by lax supervision, policies
By Martha Irvine and Scott Smith Published: Nov. 2, 2015
Sergio Alvarez is in prison serving 205 years to life, one of the longest sentences for an officer in the AP investigation (Yolo County Sheriff’s Department via AP).
Sergio Alvarez is a poster child of a predator cop, and of the flaws in policies, technological glitches and culture of policing that can allow such behavior to go unnoticed or unpunished until it’s too late.
As a rookie officer on the West Sacramento police force, Alvarez was assigned to the overnight shift on a beat that included West Capitol Avenue, known as a hangout for addicts, prostitutes and drifters. He volunteered to stay on late-night duty and, over his nearly six years on the job, he gained seniority and almost always patrolled alone.
With the solitude came opportunity.
“That’s where Alvarez falls through the cracks,” said Sacramento attorney Justin Gingery, whose firm represented four of eight women who said they were sexually assaulted by the officer, many in a dark alley near “West Cap.” Convicted in 2014 of kidnapping five of those women and either raping them or forcing them to perform oral sex, Alvarez is now serving 205 years to life in prison.
His case prompted civil lawsuits over police procedures, with a total of $4.1 million to be paid to six victims who sued, and left a new chief taking a hard look at the way the department does business.
“It hurts the heart to see victims. But it makes it even worse when you are, in one way, shape or form, a contributing factor to them being hurt,” said Tom McDonald, a former captain for the Los Angeles Police Department who took over in West Sacramento after Alvarez’s arrest.
Tom McDonald took over as chief of the West Sacramento Police Department after Sergio Alvarez was arrested. Since then, he has called for closer supervision of patrol officers and also plans to
have his ranks start wearing body cameras (AP Photo/Martha Irvine).
The International Association of Chiefs of Police spotlighted the problem of sex abuse by officers in a 2011 report that said certain conditions of the job may help create opportunities for officers to take advantage of victims — having authority over others, patrolling alone and late at night, and engaging with vulnerable citizens.
Those issues were hallmarks of the Alvarez case and many others, along with critical breakdowns in policies and procedures. Those include a lack of supervision and training fueled by budget cuts; misuse or malfunction of electronic systems meant to monitor officers; warning signs about potential misconduct that was overlooked; and a good old boy culture in which inappropriate behavior was ignored or even condoned.
A lack of supervision was a major finding in a March Department of Justice report about the San Diego Police Department, which has been hit with several sex misconduct incidents in recent years, including the case of Anthony Arevalos, an officer convicted in 2011 following accusations that he attacked 13 women.
Justice Department investigators found that budget cuts had hit that department hard, with staffing reductions a “key problem.” Nearly a quarter of sergeant positions — considered first-line supervisors — had been filled with acting sergeants who lacked the training and authority of their predecessors.
Sergeants also were not always working the same shifts as the people they supervised, and sometimes saw subordinates only once a week.
Shelley Zimmerman, who took over in 2014 as chief in San Diego, is now, among other things, requiring patrol officers to wear body cameras to bolster accountability. Zimmerman also reinstated an internal misconduct investigative unit, and requires that more than one officer be present when any women are
Police officials often say that the first line of defense in stopping any bad cop is the screening and hiring process. But in the Alvarez case, Gingery said his own investigation on behalf of his clients found nothing about Alvarez’s life before he joined the West Sacramento force that might have foreshadowed the trouble to come.
Alvarez was a hometown boy who graduated from the local high school, got married and worked at a grocery store before being accepted into the police academy.A few years later, Alvarez’s wife, Rachel, began to fear him, she said in a letter read at his criminal trial. By 2012, she wrote, “Sergio became a stranger to me.”
Rachel Alvarez’s letter (pg 3)
Alvarez’s estranged wife, Rachel, detailed the abuse she suffered at the hands of her husband.
That was the same year he found many of his victims, using the power of the badge and any leverage he had — pending warrants, drug possession — to get what he wanted. One victim was an alcoholic, often seen on the streets collecting bottles and scrap metal for money.
“I remember when I was done, I stood up and I glanced straight at his name tag, and he said, ‘Now everything Mr. Alvarez does is a secret,’“ she testified at trial, recalling the first of four sexual incidents with the man she called a “creepy cop.”
The criminal case uncovered several previous red flags: The GPS unit in Alvarez’s squad car was not working, which meant that no one could track or verify his location. He also routinely ignored an order to use the audio-visual recording unit inside his patrol car.
Alvarez fell through the cracks (pg 10)
Sergio Alvarez was known to have disabled the camera system inside his patrol car.
The device captures what happens during traffic stops, recording the scene in front of a patrol car and also the back seat, where, in Alvarez’s case, investigators eventually found seminal fluid matching him and the vaginal fluid and DNA of one victim.
McDonald, the new West Sacramento chief, has implemented changes. He’s instructed sergeants to be more involved in direct supervision of street cops, and requires a supervising officer on all shifts, including the overnight. He is mandating that his officers use their audio-visual units and that cars get regularly serviced to ensure the units and GPS systems work. And the city has applied for a grant to purchase body cameras.
McDonald said the changes were not a specific response to the Alvarez case but rather part of an attempt to create an atmosphere in which officers quickly report any signs of misconduct.
Others who’ve dealt with these kinds of cases said that efforts to prevent sexual misconduct must go beyond rules and regulations to address the boys’ club culture of policing.
As an officer in Ocean City, Maryland, Bernadette DiPino, now in Sarasota,
Florida, encountered what she called a “laissez faire” attitude about sexually inappropriate behavior. She recalled one patrol officer in the Maryland department who was known for using binoculars to peep in people’s windows while on duty.
“Everybody knew about this guy, but they did nothing to stop it,” said DiPino, who later served as chief in Ocean City.
During a deposition for a civil suit conducted by Albuquerque attorney Shannon Kennedy, Michael Garcia, a former sex crimes detective now in federal prison, describes a sexually charged culture in the Las Cruces Police Department in which other officers referred to his victim, 17-year-old police intern Diana Guerrero, as “hot.”
Attorney Shannon Kennedy said she learned of similar behavior in the case of Michael Garcia, the former sex crimes detective in Las Cruces, New Mexico, who’s in federal prison for sexually assaulting former intern Diana Guerrero. Kennedy said the criminal case and a pending civil lawsuit revealed a department rife with sexism and sexual innuendo — crotch-grabbing, porn viewed at work on cellphones, and female employees routinely called “whores” and “bitches.”
Male officers “think this sexual banter is just locker-room culture,” said Kennedy, who represents the victim in the civil case. “They just think it’s funny.” An attorney for the city said neither he nor police officials could respond because of the lawsuit, though in a deposition for the civil suit, Garcia described an atmosphere in which officers regularly commented on the appearance of women at the station, including Guerrero.
“Tickets for treats” (pg 11)
Bevard said her daughter complained about Alvarez to other officers, who dismissed her.
In West Sacramento, one civil lawsuit against the department and the city, filed on behalf of a mentally ill woman who attorneys say was twice coerced into giving Alvarez oral sex and once was sodomized by him, alleges that trading sexual favors for non-enforcement of laws was so well known within the 70- member force that officers nicknamed it “tickets for treats.”
Heatherlyn Bevard’s mentally ill daughter, Rebecca, is one of six Alvarez victims who will divide a $4.1 million settlement in a lawsuit against the city of West Sacramento and its police department.
The woman’s mother, Heatherlyn Bevard, said in an interview with the AP that her daughter, Rebecca, tried to tell a few officers about Alvarez and “a couple of
them just laughed at her, ‘OK, whatever.’”
McDonald insisted that such behavior among his officers will not be tolerated.
“They need to understand that it’s an expectation that if they see something that’s inappropriate, they need to stand up.” Bevard, however, says no apologies or settlements — even promises to fix the system — will mend her broken trust.
Broken system lets problem officers jump from job to job
By Nomaan Merchant and Matt Sedensky LPublished: Nov. 3, 2015
aw enforcement officers accused of sexual misconduct have jumped from job to job — and at times faced fresh allegations that include raping women — because of a tattered network of laws and lax screening that allowed them to stay on the beat, the AP’s yearlong
investigation also found.
Michael Ragusa Christopher Epperson
Serving 10 years for the kidnapping and sexual battery of Serving a three-year probation sentence for sex three women in 2006 and 2007 (Miami Police Dept.) assaults of two county jail inmates (Wasatch She
The broken system for policing bad officers includes significant flaws in how agencies deal with those suspected of sexual misconduct and glaring warning signs that go unreported or get overlooked.
And while the AP’s review is the most comprehensive available, the finding that about 1,000 officers in six years lost their licenses over sexual misconduct is a certain undercount. The number measures only officers who faced a decertification process and not all states have such a system or provided information. Even among states that did provide records, some reported no officers removed for sexual misdeeds even though cases were identified via official records and news stories.
In states that do revoke law enforcement licenses, the process can take years. And while there is a national index of decertified officers, contributing to it is voluntary and experts say the database, which is not open to the public, is missing thousands of names.
Some officers are permitted to quietly resign and never even face decertification. Others are able to keep working because departments may not be required to report all misdeeds to a state police standards commission, or they neglect to. Agencies also may not check references when hiring, or fail to share past problems with new employers.
In 2010, a woman sued the Grand Junction Police Department in Colorado, insisting the department erred in hiring officer Glenn Coyne and then failed to supervise him. Coyne was fired, and killed himself days after he was arrested on suspicion of raping the woman in September 2009.
Police decertification by state, 2009 – 2014
What is reported:
Local law enforcement agencies are required to report any officer’s arrest to the state’s Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission. Convictions or lying to the commission
NOTE: Includes state decertifications and AP’s tally of those that were sex-related. Numbers do not reflect the full scope of the problem. Six states and the District of Columbia said they do not decertify officers for misconduct: California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island. Louisiana, Maryland and North Carolina provided no information to the AP.
That was sexual assault accusation No. 3, court records show. While Coyne was still with the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office, another woman accused him of subjecting her to a strip search and groping her. The complaint came after Grand Junction had completed its background check, and Mesa County officials — who declined comment — did not investigate or inform Coyne’s new employer, according to court records.
A second complaint came in 2008 when a woman accused Coyne of sexual assault. Grand Junction officials placed the officer on probation and cut his pay and, even though the district attorney declined to prosecute, Coyne was still on probation when the third accusation was lodged. While the courts found no deliberate indifference by police in employing Coyne, one ruling said the “handling of Officer Coyne could and should have been better.”
Grand Junction Police Chief John Camper said a subsequent evaluation of hiring procedures found them to be sound, but added that “it’s safe to say that we’re more thorough than ever.” Prospective officers must sign a form allowing the department to review previous personnel records, and it’s considered a red flag if employers don’t respond.
“If an agency won’t speak with us, or seems reticent to supply details, we’ll either dig further into other sources or we just won’t consider the applicant any further,” Camper said.
Police standards agencies in 44 states can revoke the licenses of problem officers, which should prevent a bad cop from moving on to police work
can result in decertification.
elsewhere. But six states, including New York and California, have no decertification authority over officers who commit misconduct.
Roger Goldman believes every state should have a system for decertifying problem officers. Six don’t.
And in states with decertification powers, virtually every police standards agency relies on local departments to investigate and report questionable conduct. Those reporting requirements vary, said Roger Goldman, an expert on police licensing. About 20 states can decertify an officer only after a criminal conviction.
Consider the variations between Pennsylvania and Florida. In Pennsylvania, the state agency responsible for police certification reported just 20 revocations from 2009 through 2014, none for sex-related crimes or misconduct. Florida decertified 2,125 officers in those six years, some 162 for sex-related misconduct.
The difference: Florida is automatically notified when an officer is arrested and requires local departments to report any time an officer is found to have committed misconduct involving “moral character.” Pennsylvania relies on law enforcement agencies to report when an officer has committed a crime or misconduct.
The records provided to the AP did not include any decertification for former Pittsburgh police officer Adam Skweres, who pleaded guilty in 2013 to extorting sexual favors from five women and is serving up to eight years in prison.
Former Pittsburgh police officer Adam Skweres was convicted of extorting sexual favors from five women he promised to help with legal troubles. He’s serving up to eight years in prison (Larry Roberts/Post-Gazette via AP).
Another concern is the length of the decertification process.
In Texas, Michael John Nelson left the Hardeman County Sheriff’s Office in 2010 after being accused of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old neighbor. The local district attorney told the AP he did not prosecute in exchange for Nelson relinquishing his law enforcement license, an agreement reached with the victim
and her family. Yet by the time his decertification was final — a year after he left the sheriff’s office — Nelson had already worked briefly as a reserve deputy in the town of Bayou Vista.
Paul Odin, who replaced the Bayou Vista police chief who hired Nelson, said background checks often are limited by a department’s size and budget, and that “a lot of agencies, a lot of cities — to avoid lawsuits — won’t disclose anything negative.”
“ If you’re decertified in a state, you can move to a state that doesn’t have decertification and
continue to work.”
– Roger Goldman, licensing expert
A National Decertification Index contains the names of nearly 20,000 officers who have lost their licenses. But despite calls since 1996 to expand the index and require participation, contributing remains voluntary, and only 39 states do so. Goldman, the decertification expert, said he believes every state should license and ban officers the same as they do other professionals, such as doctors and teachers. But law enforcement unions call that unnecessary when departments can fire officers and prosecutors can pursue criminal charges.
Ultimately, union officials said, policing the corps is the job of a chief.
“You’ve got to start at the beginning,” said Jim Pasco, director of the Fraternal Order of Police. “Did the process fail when they hired these people? … And that’s a problem that shoots through a whole myriad of issues, not just sexual