Category: Police

A VICTORIAN police officer has told an anti-corruption hearing she “touched” a drunk woman in custody with her foot to calm her down but didn’t kick her, despite alarming footage showing the partially naked woman being stomped by other officers.

Confronting video footage shown at the opening of the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission in Ballarat shows officers kicking and stomping on the woman — who also had her pants pulled down past her thighs.

The woman is then sat up by Leading Senior Constable Nicole Munro and dragged along the ground out of the cell by another officer.

Sen-Constable Munro told the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission hearing into alleged use of excessive force at Ballarat Police Station that the woman, 51, was face down and handcuffed when she tried to “calm her down”.

“(I was saying), ‘Just calm down, we’re trying to help you here.’”

“I do remember touching her with my foot. I was trying to get her attention to calm her down,” she told the hearing.

“I did not kick her hard, there was nothing malicious.”

The woman was arrested in January 2015 for being drunk and showed aggression towards police when she was arrested, but complied with all police directions when she arrived at the station.

Ms Munro told Tuesday’s IBAC hearing she and her partner were at another incident when they were recalled to the station by colleagues who said the woman had become violent in the cells, attempting to kick and bite police.

The footage also shows the woman being pepper-sprayed and stripped naked from the waist down.

Ms Munro said it was a chaotic scene when she arrived and found the woman face down on the cell floor, her hands cuffed behind her back — so she tried to calm her.

Ms Munro said she didn’t see her colleagues forcibly kick or stomp on the woman, despite the video showing she was inside the cell when it happened.

The unidentified woman was then dragged to a hot shower, which according to the Herald Sun, “exaggerate the effects of pepper spray”.

The officers involved in the incident were cleared of brutality by an internal investigation, while the victim was charged.

The Ballarat police department account for around one in 20 assault complaints in Victoria between 2010 and 2015. That’s three times the state average.

“Regrettably time has not seen an improvement,” said counsel assisting Jack Rush QC.

“Complaints have remained constant and high.”

The hearing before IBAC Commissioner Stephen O’Bryan continues.

Source: Police accused of stripping, kicking and stomping woman in Ballarat

A Baltimore officer was acquitted Monday of assault and other charges in the arrest of Freddie Gray, dealing prosecutors a significant blow in their attempt to hold police accountable for the young black man’s death from injuries he suffered in the back of a police van.

A judge also found Officer Edward Nero not guilty of reckless endangerment and misconduct in office. As the verdict was read, Nero dropped his head down and his attorney placed a hand on his back. The courtroom was quiet. Nero stood up and hugged his attorney, and was visibly emotional.

The assault charge carried a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and reckless endangerment carried a punishment of up to five years.

Gray died April 19, 2015, a week after his neck was broken in the back of a police transport van while he was handcuffed and shackled but left unrestrained by a seat belt.

Nero was one of six officers charged in the case. He waived his right to a jury trial, opting instead to argue his case before Circuit Judge Barry Williams. A jury trial was held for Officer William Porter late last year, and the panel could not reach a decision on manslaughter and other charges.

Gray’s death set off more than a week of protests followed by looting, rioting and arson that prompted a citywide curfew. His name became a rallying cry in the growing national conversation about the treatment of black men by police officers.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said in a statement that Nero will still face an administrative review by the police department.

“We once again ask the citizens to be patient and to allow the entire process to come to a conclusion. In the case of any disturbance in the city, we are prepared to respond. We will protect our neighbourhoods, our businesses and the people of our city,” she said.

About a dozen protesters gathered outside the courthouse as the verdict was read.

Prosecutors said Nero unlawfully detained Gray and acted callously when he made a decision not to buckle Gray into a seat belt when he was loaded into the back of a transport vehicle.

Nero’s attorney argued his client didn’t arrest Gray and that it was the police van driver’s responsibility to buckle in detainees. The defense also said the officers who responded that day acted responsibly, and called witnesses to bolster their argument that any reasonable officer in Nero’s position would have made the same decisions.

The defense said the department’s order requiring that all inmates be strapped in is more suggestion than rule because officers are expected to act with discretion based on the circumstances of each situation.

The other officers are set to each have separate trials over the summer and into the fall. Nero is white and Porter is black. Two of the other officers charged in the case are white and two are black.

Source: Baltimore police officer acquitted on all charges in Freddie Gray case |

Five G4S Lincolnshire police control room staff have been suspended after allegations that they were making hundreds of 999 calls at quiet times to improve their perceived performance.

The five call handling staff, who are believed to include the Lincolnshire force control room manager, are understood to have made more than 600 bogus “test calls” in order to meet their target of answering 92% of calls within 10 seconds or less.

The suspended officers were all former Lincolnshire police employees who transferred to G4S four years ago when the private security company took over a £200m contract – the largest ever – to run the force’s back-office services. G4S has claimed the contract saves the force £6m a year and hailed it as a potential model for the rest of British policing.

Source: G4S police control room staff suspended over claims of bogus 999 calls | UK news | The Guardian

A Chicago woman is suing local police over a 2013 incident in which two officers threatened her with their guns and pepper-sprayed her while her children were in the car, WBBM-TV reported.

Rev. Catherine Brown said the two officers, Jose López and Michelle Morsi-Murphy, “beat me down to my underwear, pulled my skirt off me. They beat me with the sticks and hit me with their boots in my head.”

According to Brown, the encounter on May 13, 2013 began when she honked her horn to avert a collision with the officers’ squad car, which was speeding toward her in the alley leading to Brown’s home.

Dashcam video shows Morsi-Murphy leaving her vehicle. Brown said Morsi told her, “B*tch, move that f*cking car back” while López pointed his gun at her head. Brown then called police dispatchers to ask for a supervisor. Audio of the call captures her childrens’ screams.

“[I thought] they might shoot us and kill us,” said Brown’s daughter Georgia, who was 8 years old at the time.

Source: Dashcam video shows Chicago cop smiling while attacking reverend with kids in her car

A former police worker has revealed how detectives missed the chance to catch the paedophile BBC disc jockey more than 40 years ago.

The civilian employee was manning the front counter of the police station in 1975 when two 15-year-old schoolgirls walked in with their parents to report Savile for indecent assault.

A detective called down from the CID office to conduct a formal interview told the astonished families: “This will open a whole can of worms. These are important people. The best thing you can do is toddle off home.”

When Savile visited Scarborough police station he was greeted like royalty

Nigel Ward

The two girls had been staying with their parents at a holiday park near Scarborough, North Yorkshire, where Savile had his second home.

They were spotted wondering around arcades on the seafront by the Jim’ll Fix It presenter, who had been cruising Scarborough’s Golden Mile in his Rolls-Royce.

After luring his victims into the car and driving away from the seafront the pervert pounced and indecently assaulted both girls.

They jumped out of the car and ran back to tell their parents, who took them to Scarborough police station to lodge a formal complaint.

The civilian support worker, who did not want to be named, said: “They came to the front desk. My job if someone came in to report a crime was to take the basic information and immediately run upstairs to pass it to CID.”

He believes the families chose not to pursue their complaint after being brushed off by the detective.

The support worker gave his account in a taped interview to local campaigner Nigel Ward, who helped to expose ice cream magnate Peter Jaconelli as Savile’s accomplice in some of the abuse cases.

Source: Scarborough police brushed off girls who reported Jimmy Savile | UK | News | Daily Express

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