Howzabout That Citizen Review Board

Last February, the Virginian-Pilot reported that Chesapeake Police Chief Richard Justice was opposed to a citizen review board. Now, in the wake of a botched raid on a marijuana grow-operation that wasn’t, he’s on his way out. Ironically, if a CRB had been implemented then, he might not be facing an early retirement.

In November, a one year old child named Ny-Asia Tillmon was murdered during a home invasion in the South Norfolk section of Chesapeake, just a few blocks from the Portlock home of Ryan Frederick. In December, a SWAT team raided the home of Marva Morris in the 2000 block of Stahlman Road in South Norfolk, looking for Shawn Sir Charles Ward, a suspect in the shooting. Ward was arrested the following day at the home of a relative in Virginia Beach.

Chesapeake Police were acting on a tip which, like the tip about the grow-op in Frederick’s home, was, by all appearances, completely unfounded. Not only was Morris not related to Ward, but she had her own history of conflicts with him. Morris tried to get a warrant against Ward earlier in 2007, because he had been “chasing” her daughter, and had complained to police about him previously for “terrorizing the neighborhood.” It hardly seems likely that Morris would harbor a fugitive with whom she had such a demonstrably contentious relationship. It occurs to me that Chesapeake police could have discovered this very same thing, prior to sending a SWAT team to raid and utterly destroy this woman’s home, if they had researched their very own records.

This situation is precisely the sort of thing that a Citizen’s Review Board would have investigated. In the midst of such an investigation, it seems likely that the CPD would have exercised greater care before raiding Ryan Frederick’s home. If so, Det. Jarrod Shivers would not have been killed, and Chief Justice would not be under such pressure to retire.

In other words, the police themselves could have benefitted from a little accountability.

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33 Responses to Howzabout That Citizen Review Board

  1. Chuck says:

    Doc,

    42 years of service to the City of Chesapeake is “early” retirement? Seems the guy wants to enjoy his health while he still has it. A bit about myself: 13 year veteran police officer currently working on his graduate degree in criminal justice. We do not have a perfect system, but we have the best system of justice on this planet. There are more checks and balances for American law enforcement officers than in any other nation. The men and women that are charged with protecting you, also have family members that many times live in the jurisdictions they work. You keep presenting “facts” of cover ups when things don’t go perfectly. It saddens me that you hold the police in such contempt. Why do you want the police to let everyone know some of their tactics that help to take bad people off of the streets. You are hung up on two very tragic incidents. Have you ever wondered how many successful arrests of dope dealers the CPD has made? How many successful search warrants have been served in an effort to remove drugs (by the way, the Supreme Court has stated that involvement in drugs is an inherently dangerous activity – you keep harping on Frederick not having a record – that makes him an unknown risk, but a risk none the less) from Chesapeake? You are making assumptions that may not be correct and seem unwilling to let the justice system, however slow at times, run its course. No offense, but citizens like you who rush to judgement, have no idea about police procedures and want to speculate the heck out of unfortunate incidents are the reason why most law enforcement officers hope citizen review boards do not become a fact in Virginia. By the way, the State Code does not allow them, maybe that will change some day, but for now, whether Chief Justice was for them or not, the law doesn’t allow it.

  2. Don Tabor says:

    Chuck,

    This post calling for a review board was from Rick, not me, but I welcome your expertise on police procedure.

    I want very much to believe that the CPD is not hiding anything, but so long as important questions go unanswered so long after the incident, the appearance of a cover-up is unavoidable.

    Please read the unanswered questions post and explain those apparent contradictions and I will be much relieved.

    Don

  3. Whenever a public agency shuns oversight, be it citizen or elected (such as congressional), I start to worry.

  4. John Wilburn says:

    Chuck,

    In the military we had a saying, “One aw shit cancels a thousand attaboys.” In short, it doesn’t matter how many “successes” the CPD has had, in enforcing the law, which is what they are paid to do – what matters is the reckless endangerment (twice in as many months) of the public they are tasked to protect, as well as endangering themselves. As I have stated before, in another posting – people who carry and use firearms, as a condition of employment, don’t have the luxury of making mistakes.
    Police officers we need, and hold in high regard – cowboys and nazis we can do without…

  5. Reid Greenmun says:

    Chuck,

    The way I see it, the police need to respect our rights. We are innocent until proven guilty. The whole manner in which this man’s home was invaded in the dark of night could have been avoided. The police could have searched his home – with a legal warrant and legal probable cause – during the day when Mr. Fredrick was not at home. Had this course of action been taken then Det. Jarrod Shivers would not have been killed,

    While the CPD have demonstrated many successful arrests and investigations, they are bound to respect our rights as documented by our Constitution.

    What is the downside of having a citizen review board to provide an unbiased review of the actions of our police?

    As I see it, the police work for the citizens. We pay them – and we have a right to take actions to ensure they are not crossing the line and abusing their powers and authority.

    If we lose confidence in our law enforcement process then our cooperation will begin to wane. We will begin to resist the police and view them with suspicion and fear.

    Surly we do not desire that as the outcome?

    Sunshine is a powerful disinfectant.

    The Police need to remember that their mission is to protect and to serve, not to become an aggressive, armed, and oppressive force that chooses to intimidate citizens in their homes in the dead of night as a “tactic” for “securing the scene” and “gathering evidence’

    Any rational citizen can agree that there were many better options for dealing with Mr. Fredrick then the aggressive manner the CPD decided they would employ.

    And of course, the glaring question left unanswered is why only TWO SWAT OFFICERS were used to invade Mr. Fredrick’s home?

  6. Chuck says:

    Gentlemen, a couple of things:

    Mr. Greenmun: Unbiased review (and understanding) would be welcome by law enforcement in my opinion. Your comments show that you are not unbiased. Why was the search warrant not legal? Why was the probable cause not legal? Warrants, whether arrest or search, are based on probable cause. Guilt or innocence is based on beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. Two entirely different thresholds and burdens to prove. Both thresholds are designed to protect the rights of citizens. The search warrants in this matter were issued by a neutral, third party magistrate…Is the magistrate’s office part of some conspiracy as well as the police?

    Mr. Stinson: law enforcement is subject to more oversight than any other type of government agency that I’m aware of. Locally, there are internal affairs units, the Commonwealth’s Attorney, the State Police, and then the Justice Department and FBI. Lets not forget local police departments are answerable to the political leadership (City Council) of their communities. Chiefs have been and should be fired if their departments are rife with misconduct and corruption.

    Mr. Wilburn: you mention reckless endangerment and allude to the attempt to apprehend the baby killer. Why is the deployment of tear gas, a non-lethal means to have someone surrender, reckless. Is some property damage worth not having to worry about a shoot out inside the home? I think using that tool showed great restraint on the part of the CPD, but you see it as reckless (unbiased?).

    On the subject of tips: people call the police all the time and provide anonymous information (ever heard of Crime Line?). This information must be investigated and often it provides reasonable suspicion to detain someone for further investigation. Further investigation can lead to probable cause and an arrest. Confidential informants are a mainstay in modern law enforcement, but there use in modern police departments are subject to (as they should be) much scrutiny and procedure. In general, CIs must be reliable before any information they provide can be acted upon and, where possible, the information must be independently corroborated by the police. This is good practice. Some seem to think the CPD didn’t operate that way or that they must just willy nilly go by whatever an informant says, why is that? What proof is there?

    Mr. Greenmun: Which police department that you have experience with is aggressive, armed, oppressive, and intimidates citizens? Why, in our great society, is that being allowed? Are you referring to the need of the police to take precautions and use tactics for their own safety as “aggressive”? Wearing body armor and helmets is for protection. Serving warrants while the subject is home increases the chance for an arrest, isn’t that what the police are paid to do? Don’t you want the drug dealers in your neighborhood arrested? The dead of night? A little after 8 p.m.? Come on, this is unbiased? We all have a face and a story for Mr. Frederick now. The police didn’t when they planned and implemented their operation. You guys are arm chair quarterbacking based on information that comes to light after the fact. That is what upsets me. What the police knew and how they learned it will come out at trial, but you are unwilling to wait.

    Oh yeah, “invade” his home? That’s unbiased? The U.S. Constitution prohibits “unreasonable” search and seizures. Forced entry into a home with a search warrant is reasonable when someone refuses to come to the door. That is not an invasion. Again, another unbiased citizen review of the situation. Only two SWAT officers? Was this a SWAT operation? I’ve been on search warrant teams before that did not involve SWAT. Why, in your mind is that an issue? Every police officer or detective can be trained to enter a home and can be issued tactical gear for their protection.

    I agree that where possible the public should be informed about the circumstances surrounding major incidents. As we see in the two situations mentioned above, where there are questions with no answers, inevitably someone, the uniformed public, will begin to fill in the blanks on their own, whether right or wrong. I’ll be glad when the facts of this case come out in Court, hopefully questions will be answered and the CPD can again gain the confidence of some members of the public.

    Guys, as a cop, I get discouraged sometimes by the double edged sword that is law enforcement. We are damned if we do and damned if we don’t. “This neighborhood is rife with drugs but the police don’t do anything about it” or “The police are always here harassing us”. I don’t know sometimes. It all depends on perspective, unfortunately one’s perspective is not always reality.

  7. TC says:

    Hey Chuck a stink in Durham PD will fill in any holes you may about corruption in PD’s. Even still in post Nifong times.

    Actually the way you write is rather eloquent for a cop, but such is good actually. It’s also good to hear you are furthering your education, it shows in your writing as well. But you may desire to write in the first person when telling us about you.

    Police Depts. are really much more like accountants than protectors. They generally are not there standing between trouble, they show up, take pictures and fill out the forms well after the crime.

    All cops from the beat to the top of the DEA should be very proud of their devastating effectiveness they have had during the war on drugs. Take a bow and rise for the ribbon.

    “….that makes him an unknown risk, but a risk none the less)…” So it’s cool to ZERO investigation of the unknown? Oh wait; “In general, CIs must be reliable before any information they provide can be acted upon and, where possible, the information must be independently corroborated by the police. This is good practice.”

    Yes it is, and had CPD actually done any of it, they A) would not have been dealing with an unknown risk. B) never sought a warrant against him. C) would be sharing a beer with their bald headed friend.

    They would have even know he worked a job that started at 5 am and just sorta figured that 8Pm was indeed bedtime for him. So middle of the night remains a valid description for this case.

    What is so very difficult about the concept “time to answer the door” so very difficult for cops to comprehend? Can you, lying in bed, asleep or not, get up and answer in the same time it took you to read this?

    Meeting aggression after a forced entry is not exactly a new concept. Dates back to when rocks on wooden handles were the only weapons available.

    So today’s cop think says to, put on your armor and go break down some doors, guns blazing, gas and flash bangs going off and we can grab a couple of joints and be community heroes in the process!

    Part of me really do not like saying this, but as a citizen speaking to one supporting the invasion technics of the cops, I can only hope that you and your family gets ratted out by some CI and your own dept will be so professional and diligent to perform the same invasion on your own residence.

    I will add another item, you are quite naive about what will come out in a court of law! More importantly what won’t!

    I compared cops to accounts earlier, that is not totally correct, they are bookkeeper level. They as cops, have the ability and responsibility to put together the pieces of a case, actually determine on a primary level if there is a case.

    The cops got it right in Durham NC on the night of the alleged rape. It was quite obvious to both of the initial beat officers that NOTHING happened on Buchanan Drive, sans some heated discussions with a drunk and some young people. They knew it, filed it, and continued with due course procedures for Crystal. The next morning it was Sgt Gottlieb that some how got a hold of something, pleaded with superiors and somehow got the case which was not even in his assigned world and met with the non-sane approved sane nurse, who hates whites and men worse. The stage was set and the rest is history.

    Now another question I have for you Chuck, is who is going to paying for potential 100 million $ lawsuit settlement?

    Who is Chesapeake will be paying for Ryan’s successful suit?

    If you really desire to know about blown raids and just follow a trail of stupid human tricks, under color of law, go read the Agaitor.com.

    Yes you have a tough job, and yes there are way of doing many things with much less potential harm to officers or citizens.

    I suggest officers start out with a very long course featuring the Andy Griffith show. Then think about the Barney’s on roids, shaved heads, menacing looking facial hair with body armor and more than one bullet.

    Oh and don’t get yourself confused over the differences between earned respect and demanded respect. They are very different.

  8. TC says:

    For Immediate Release
    38 Duke Lacrosse Team Members Unite to Sue
    Duke University and City of Durham
    Over Corrupt 2006 Rape Allegations and Investigation
    Suit Says University Leaders Capitulated to Mob Pressure, Sacrificed Team to Protect its Image
    WASHINGTON, D.C., Feb. 21/PRNewswire/ — More than three dozen members of the 2006
    Duke University men’s lacrosse team and members of their families filed suit against Duke
    University, its President Richard Brodhead and other officials, Duke’s medical center, and the
    City of Durham and city officials for emotional distress and other injuries in connection with
    false rape charges and a corrupt police investigation against team members in 2006.
    The charges were dismissed and the players exonerated by North Carolina Attorney General Roy
    Cooper in April 2007 after he took over the investigation from the local district attorney, Michael
    Nifong. Nifong was disbarred for violating legal ethics in his conduct of the investigation. Three
    players had been charged with a gang rape of an exotic dancer who was hired to entertain at a
    team party in March 2006.
    The suit, filed today in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina, said
    University officials remained silent even though they possessed convincing evidence of the
    players’ innocence and also “lent credibility to the rape allegations by capitulating to an angry
    mob’s demands to condemn and punish the innocent players and their blameless coach.”
    University Leaders Stood Silent While Team Members Were Harassed
    “For more then a year, the lacrosse players were caught up in a horrifying personal nightmare.
    They were harassed in class by teachers and their fellow students. They were the target of protest
    marches and threats; they were called rapists and racists; they were surrounded in their own
    homes by screaming protestors. They were victimized by a corrupt investigation that ignored or
    suppressed evidence that would have cleared them. And, all for a crime that never took place,”
    lead attorney Chuck Cooper said in announcing the lawsuit.
    The suit says that Brodhead and other Duke officials actively blinded themselves to and
    suppressed exculpatory evidence; discredited exculpatory evidence that had been publicly
    disclosed; stood passively while faculty and student protestors waged a campaign of abuse and
    harassment against the lacrosse team members; issued statements and imposed discipline on the
    team that signaled the players’ guilt; and remained silent when an inexperienced nurse at its
    medical center falsely characterized a medical exam at Duke Hospital as indicating that a rape
    had taken place. Brodhead later conceded that Duke students and faculty “were quick to speak
    as if the charges were true.”
    Cooper said the University turned its back on the players in a bid to protect its own image.
    Cooper noted that Nifong could not be named in the lawsuit because of the protections offered
    him by federal bankruptcy law. But the suit strongly condemned Nifong and his investigators for
    hiding and fabricating evidence, tampering with and intimidating witnesses, rigging photo
    lineups, and ignoring and hiding DNA and other evidence that demonstrated the players’
    innocence. He said the City of Durham must be held responsible for Nifong’s misconduct, who
    was motivated in part by his desire to boost his flagging election campaign.
    Suit Demands Accountabilty; Aims to Find the Full Truth
    The suit seeks underdetermined monetary damages, but Cooper said the suit seeks the full truth
    and accountability of those whose misconduct caused and prolonged the lacrosse team’s ordeal.
    “These young men want an acknowledgment that they were wronged by institutions and
    individuals that they trusted to treat them honestly. The pain and suffering they experienced
    cannot be erased; the misconduct of the University and town officials cannot be undone. But
    this suit will enable them to learn the full truth, to put the facts in plain view in a court of law,
    and to hold Duke’s leaders and town officials accountable for their wrongdoing.” Cooper said.
    The players and their parents are represented by the law firm of Cooper & Kirk, PLLC, in
    Washington, D.C.
    More information about this lawsuit, including a downloadable PDF of the complaint and other
    materials about the case can be found at http://www.dukelawsuit.com.
    SOURCE Cooper & Kirk, PLLC
    CONTACT Robert H. Bork, Jr.
    (703) 821-8008
    dukelawsuit@gmail.com

    *******

    Officer Chuck, WHO pays for this?

  9. Chuck says:

    TC,

    Yes, police work is generally reactive in nature. We are very happy when we get to actually prevent crimes and not investigate them after the fact. Yes, we all know (or many of us anyway) that the “war on drugs” is a frustrating and a seemingly futile endeavor. But the simple fact remains that as long as society wants them to remain illegal, and yes, the majority of society wants this or else the laws would be changed, the police are mandated to enforce the law. Where do we draw the line anyway on such “victimless” crimes? If marijuana is legalized, what next, meth? heroin? crack? Please let me know. Enlighten me. EVERY encounter with a member of the public poses and unknown risk to law enforcement officers, no matter what they know or found out through investigation, because we have no way of knowing what is in someone’s mind! We don’t know what someone will do, how they will react. Do you know how we can find that out before hand? Again, let me know if you do. I’m naive about outcomes in a court of law? You know my background… I don’t know yours, but unless you are an attorney, a cop, or a big time criminal, you’ve not been in court as much as me. Shocking outcomes go both ways. There are way more guilty criminals given second chances than are sent to jail or prison. I have confidence in our system, you do not, I’m not going to try to change your mind (the Duke players went through hell, no doubt, but in the end the system worked for them didn’t it?). Are there botched raids? Incidents of misconduct? Bad cops? Yes. Yes. Yes. We get to hear about them on the news (look at that jack*ss and the dui lady in handcuffs – deplorable – or the elderly women in Atlanta shot and killed by crooked cops, on and on) but these are exceptions. Good work by good cops is being done everyday, countless times. Misinformation or the lack thereof is causing speculation in this case, but you don’t know the facts and are making huge assumptions critical of the police. Why? Your past experience or present condition influences your perception of events and your position is based on that. I can’t change any of that so I won’t try.

  10. Vancon says:

    I work in a police department on the other side of the continent…

    Here in Vancouver, we average about five or six grow op busts per day. That’s not investigations, that’s when we do find plants. In the past decade we’ve never lost an officer nor shot a suspect dead while conducting these searches and seizures. Other than an old Vietnamese lady who took a battering ram to the chest, I’m honestly hard pressed to think of any serious injuries caused.

    We usually do about three or four inspections/investigative trips to the home first. You’ll either smell it or hear the ventilation and they’re excellent probable cause on warrants. There was no indication of such investigative techniques. We teach this stuff to rc constables.

    We hit during the day. It’s just safer for everyone involved.

    “EVERY encounter with a member of the public poses and unknown risk to law enforcement officers, no matter what they know or found out through investigation, because we have no way of knowing what is in someone’s mind!”

    No, they don’t. There is no inherent risk when talking to a person. You know exactly what’s going on with that person… they’re going to behave like any other human being. If you frighten them, they’ll react. Sometimes they’ll run, sometimes they’ll fight back. Now, if you’re looking to provoke a fight or hope for one with every traffic stop you do, you’ve got the right attitude.

    As a working man, not a LEO, just a guy with a job to do I find the whole manner in which this was handled to be atrocious. Lack of care for human life, lack of craftsmanship and pride in building a strong case from the start. I understand that the CPD is a smaller department which would make cross-training inevitable, but seriously, mixing vice work and SWAT training is just a recipe for disaster. Two totally different mindsets that are going to conflict with one another leading to terrible results.

    I know access to firearms changes things, but we’re about five times more likely to find a child under the age of ten in a home with a grow operation than we are a gun.

  11. jEFFREY says:

    Chuck:

    How much trust do think the citizens have in the police when the only ones that investigate the police are ‘brother’ law enforcement agencies? It is common knowledge or misconception that police will not testify against other officers.

    Police are never hels accountable to the citizens. If I shoot someone breaking into my home, I’m the one arrested. Hopefully I would be released soon, but it would still cost me bail and time lost from work. If a cop shoots someone he gets a paid leave. We call that a vacation.

    I am base my opinions on my own interactions with the PD in my home town. They might be wrong or out of line in your view, but I’m not alone in them. And I might add that there are more and more people feeling this way everyday.

  12. Reid Greenmun says:

    Chuck,

    I wasn’t implying that the warrent was not legal, nor that probabe cause did not exist. I guess my post was misunderstood.

    My point was simpy this – there were clearly far better ways to search Mr. Fredrick’s home then the manner the CPD decided upon.

    Now, here is a question I’d like to know the answer to – exacty how long did the CPD wait after knocking on the door – and where was Mr. Fredrick when his door was being knocked on?

    When I am asleep I am fairy groggy and it takes me a whie to get up and go to the door. Depending on where I am in my home, I don’t aways hear people at my front door.

    My point about being innocent until proven guilty is that we citizens should be trreated with dignity and respect by our llaw enforcement officers.

    Especially when we are in our own homes – and do not have a prior record.

    Clearly had the CPD decised to handle this search using a different tactic, the outcome would not have been so tragic.

    Breaking down a citizen’s door shoud be a last resort, not a first choice.

  13. Mike says:

    Chuck,

    I appreciate your level headed outlook and desire to reasonably debate this issue. You sound like one of the good ones. A lot of “cro-magnon” type LEO’s would already be screaming their desire for a police state and torture to anyone that disagrees. I know a lot of LEO’s and there are plenty of the jack boot folks in the ranks. I love it when they come in to a restaurant with the high and tight military haircuts and bloused fatigues looking like they are ready for battle. Actually they look like tacti-cool idiot mall ninjas. What ever happened to regular uniforms and a normal hair cut? I guess they aren’t scary enough. Just an FYI, I am former military and now a professional in the civilian sector.

    My interactions with LEO’s:

    -two speeding tickets over 20 years. One guy was normal, the other a nasty prick.
    -watched 5 LEO’s brutally beat a kid in Fort Lauderdale for throwing water balloons
    -called 911 in Suffolk because my house was broken into (perps still in the house, my wife drove up to the house and surprised them). Cops showed up 25 minutes later and said there was nothing they could do.
    -Have been to cop parties where all they do is brag about how many heads they got to bust over the past week.

    So, as you can see my interactions with these folks have left me with less than a positive outlook on the group. I really have no use for LEO’s as I am quite capable of defending my home without them.

    With that said though, I have one question. Why didn’t they just pick him up on the way to work and then search the house? Makes one think they were looking for action.

  14. Chuck says:

    Vancon: I stand by my statement that every encounter poses unknown risk. Every traffic stop, every domestic complaint, every search warrant service, every alarm call, everything (maybe not reading to school kids, I think that is still generally considered safe). Unless you’ve done the job for a length of time and have actually had seemingly innocuous encounters go bad on you through no fault of your own, you are in no position to say that a cop can know what someone is thinking or what they will do. Unfortunately, every enforcement action is an adversarial contact. No one, and I mean no one, likes to get a ticket or arrested. Most law abiding folks admit their mistake or actions and are receptive of the cop doing his or her job, that doesn’t mean they like being on the receiving end. Professional officers treat everyone, even the guy that just tried to kill them, in a humane and safe manner once they no longer pose a threat and they only use that force which is reasonable under the circumstances to affect the arrest. Because this situation ended badly, you’re assuming reasonable investigative steps weren’t taken prior to and during the search warrant service. Why make that assumption now, without all the facts being divulged in Court?

    Jeffrey, cops are held accountable, civily and criminaly when they violate the law and a citizen’s rights. Administrative suspensions after an officer involved shooting are common practice as you state. When criminal charges are warranted, they are brought by the prosecutor. If the officer had to use deadly force to protect himself or the public, they are exonerated, just as a citizen would be in a true self-defense situation. I don’t know how the law enforcement profession can address the chasm you mention that is growing between us and the citizenry we are sworn to protect. It is frustrating for officers that think they are doing everything right, that they have a noble cause, that they are making a difference to be lumped into the same mold as the few knuckleheads that tarnish the badge because of their mis-deeds and mistakes.

    Mike, no doubt there is a lot of testosterone in this profession (not taking anything from all of the professional police women out there!). I hope the guys you refered to were just running off at the mouth and venting so they could cope with the fact that, as I mentioned above, most of our contacts are with citizens that broke the law (most admittedly minor, but what is the point of having a law if it is not going to be enforced?) and they don’t always end happily. Officers that work in bad neighborhoods become more detached and callous because they are exposed to the worst of the human condition every day. We are people just like you. Things affect us. We vent. I’m not making excuses for bad behavior and misconduct, I just hope that is all it is (venting) and no one’s rights are being violated.

  15. TC says:

    “I stand by my statement that every encounter poses unknown risk.”

    It also poses unknown opportunities as well.

    Could be termed is your glass half full or half empty.

    Chuck, when you enter with hostile actions what should be the normal expected result be? Hostility!

    I would think that if officers are so scared of the unknown that they would use their resources to actually investigate prior to rushing into the black hole of the unknown.

    Had Katheryn Johnson not been killed in that hoax of a raid you would not be calling them bad cops today. Yes she attempted to defend herself and fired three times, the hero cops shot themselves or each other!

    It appears that for now, all you can do is fill pages and pages with excuses as to why today’s cops are the boot jacks they portray themselves to be to the public. You talk about their gatherings and head busting prattle as if it has no effect on their mind set. But locker room talk is what fires up the team! Encourages even greater feats of bravado.

    I’ve no idea what position you may hold within your dept. but so far on this blog you are sounding just like your chief, who stated that he fully intends on doing it the same way. Sticking your hands in the pot of boiling water, expecting a different outcome every time. Guess what will happen?

    Guess what chuck, they get ya killed, they get citizens killed, and they create law suits.

    Which BTW you still did not answer my question about WHO pays for those settlements?

  16. Chuck says:

    I can’t make someone who has decided to mistrust the police understand what it takes to be in law enforcement in our society today. It is not easy at times. I never said officers are “scared all the time”, but we can never let our guard down or fail to be cautious. Complaceny can get you killed. True, officers have a huge impact on the tone of an encounter by their demeanor and attitude and most do an excellent job, but those encounters don’t make the news or the blogs do they? Those Atlanta cops were not heroes and I never said they were. I hope they get what they deserve in federal prison and I hope all crooked cops are fired and prosecuted where warranted. They make good cops look bad. I’m not defending any misconduct by the police. Unlike you though, I’m not ready to condemn the actions of the CPD based on rumor, speculation and assumptions. Criminals are innocent until proven guilty, I guess that doesn’t apply to the police in this case does it? In your mind they screwed up. Maybe the court case will cast a different light on the situation or confirm you suspicions, who knows, we’ll have to wait and see. BTW, you already know the answer to your rhetorical question, what is your point and why is that relevant? When the government screws up they should pay. And yes, we both pay taxes to that government, so we all pay. What do you suggest differently?

  17. Vancon says:

    “Because this situation ended badly, you’re assuming reasonable investigative steps weren’t taken prior to and during the search warrant service. Why make that assumption now, without all the facts being divulged in Court?”

    Because hitting a suspected grow op on a residential street in the middle of the night is patently bad police work. It’s reckless and was totally without merit in this case. He lived alone and had a job. Not hard to figure out when the best time to go is… I was doing this before body armour and when we still carried revolvers. I know how to keep myself, my team and my suspects safety in the forefront, this shows none of those concerns nor does it look like they’re even addressed on an operational level by the CPD.

    Because I like passing on a little wisdom, here is all the probable cause you will ever need for a grow op warrant… “I stood on the neighbour’s lawn, heard the ventilation system running, watched the power meter spike when it kicked in and smelled marijuana… heavily.” Two trips is nice, three is better. Narcotics investigations being shortchanged so officers can take SWAT training rubs me the wrong way.

    This was just all around sloppy. When you defend this you put more officers in harms way for no reason and that shames the badge.

  18. TC says:

    “…mistrust the police understand what it takes to be in law enforcement in our society today”

    Do not misinterpret distrust for a known capability and probability to cover their own asses, no matter what! Proven in way too many documented instances, and they seems to share a few traits.

    Do you happen to remember way back in Jr high taking an aptitude test. I can tell you an entire class was totally astonished that the desired traits for a cop were aggressiveness, not peace keeping, busting chops is what was desired.

    Then I listened to Bill Cosby, and he describes many of his friends as straddling the fence between being a criminal or a cop. Now his angle was for humor, and it is funny, but reality has proven his words to be more gospel than humor.

    I’ve a friend today, we went to HS together, he got into my stuff one night and thinking he could take me, made the attempt. He miscalculated and ended up face down in a narrow shallow ditch, no water, and could not move until he said it was over with. He did, I let him up and got an instant eye full of fist from him. BTW he is our current Chief of Police. But way back then he taught me what he was, and as a cop he has not changed. Amazing to actually be able to watch a person over 40 years of the life and career. It’s telling.

    Education, HS grad, barely. He a good cop, despite the two known illegitimate kids, and his wife currently putting up with a mistress living under the same roof. I can tell you that I still today trust him behind the controls of a backhoe. (side biz of his).

    So what does it take to become a cop? A Hs education, POST training, and, well shave your head, grow meanecing facial hair, take some roids and show up at the gym the same time the key officers do and talk shit about citizens. (yes that was an unearned slam at your chosen industry). That would fill in the gaps.

    Complacency gets many officers killed, but it’s complacency while driving, and rarely at any other time. Usually racing to into some situation or another heard about on the radio. Even if their presence is not needed!

    If you are playing defense in football, and don’t hold your position, bad stuff can happen very quickly, but if you stay put, you have a chance of preventing it.

    “Unlike you though, I’m not ready to condemn the actions of the CPD based on rumor, speculation and assumptions.”

    If the perfume was not so strong around this case, I would not bother to so much as comment. But when you can smell a pile of shit, there is probably one nearby. And this CPD case smells with very strong odors.

    “BTW, you already know the answer to your rhetorical question, what is your point and why is that relevant? When the government screws up they should pay. And yes, we both pay taxes to that government, so we all pay.”

    That was all I desired to hear from one in public “service”. The question was not rhetorical though, it had a point to it. Though you still do not understand what a judgment well outside of insurance coverage could cost you personally. You don’t give a crap about what it might cost your fixed income neighbor though. No need, they are but citizens.

    Will you stay at your job if your salary is cut by 50% because one of your own phuked up? That is where the funds need to come from. So that those that perpetrated or supported the action are the ones that feel it in their own pocket book..

    Chuck, just as the cops toy around with “signs” of a possible lawbreaker, ( I smelled, he twitched, acted nervous and on and on), we citizens use your own “signs” as a guide post to keep a watchful eye upon the activities of the police. Your “signs” are as transparent as the guy you just caught speeding.

    Too many cops really do think the blue wall of silence will protect them, and usually it will for a time, and there is nothing inherently wrong with sticking up for your own either. Human nature almost shouts that it is right to protect our group. For a time.

    Currently you are in a position of possibly gaining real information but so far all you have offered is the same old stuff that makes most vomit. So today the citizens will vomit, and tomorrow it will be your turn, but you won’t, you will spew you line about……. oh who really gives a shit anymore.

    Vancon actually said volumes, I’m just throwing a couple balls down the alley.

    I’d almost bet that you too have a shaved head, and full, but well trimmed, facial hair. So you look menacing to others. Check this out, that shiny bald noggin is but an aid in acquisition.

    Go watch some Andy Griffith episodes, it will help calm you.

    BTW your writing deteriorates with each potential challenge you face, yup you really are a cop. But don’t run off, consider it a learning experience challenge. Rise to the occasion, besides she is very pretty.

  19. As near as I’ve seen, the warrant was for the unattached garage only.

    If the officers were in his home they didn’t belong there, and were, at least nominally, trespassing.

  20. Chuck says:

    Well, score one for the dumb, bald headed cop. I haven’t personally attacked anyone and don’t intend to. I’m glad there are so many righteous folks here. I hear law enforcement across the nation is suffering from a shortage of qualified folks willing to serve. Sign up. Blog back here and will get in touch. Do the job for a while then we’ll see. Vancon, thanks for what you did all those years ago with your revolver. I hear the CPD has a citizens police academy and allows ride-alongs (as do most Hampton Roads PDs), how about you guys get to know the folks you are de-riding. Just a thought.

  21. That whole walk a mile in my shoes thing is pretty tiresome.

    Especially when it’s a boot.

    I have a friend who is a police officer, as soon as he tells me that what is happening in Chesapeake is an anomaly I’ll ease up on law enforcement. Unfortunately, he won’t because he can’t. All it takes is the most cursory reading of the law enforcement boards and blogs to see that what passes for a mentality there is less than the standard I would want of people who are supposed to understand the idea of the rights and responsibilities of both officer and citizen.

    Police officers are public servants. They are required to be at *our* service, not the other way around. If you can’t get with that mentality then you’re in the wrong profession. They have other companies for that, like Blackwater.

    Protect and Serve remember? Not Punish and Subjugate.

  22. Chuck says:

    Troubleshooter: have you actually read anything I’ve posted? I agree with you. I’ve said “serve and protect”, professonalism, integrity, more than once on this site. You have issues with me because I am not willing to condemn the CPD without knowing all the facts. There is a ton of misinformation about this incident, yes most of that can be attributed to the CPD not getting anything out there, but, you also see the same stuff being spread by bloggers like yourself. For instance, Pilotonline provided scans of the actual warrants several weeks ago: the original search warrant was for the home and all out buildings, not just the garage as you mentioned above. But, you’re not the only one that has harped on that over and over. Wouldn’t you know, you keep seeing the same thing over and over and you begin to believe it. Oh yeah, did you meet your cop friend before or after he got on the job? I hope you don’t use the word friend lightly and I hope he is worthy of your friendship, but do you doubt for one second that he hasn’t locked someone up or had a confrontation with someone that holds him in utter contempt and knows that he was wrong or rude or a Nazi (as someone above called the CPD)? But, he’s still your friend. Good on you.

    TC, I can’t imagine how you have me so pegged after a few blog postings. I think you genuinely have contempt for me because I don’t agree with you. That’s your right.

    Vancon, your past experience means you have all the answers? Do you know how long the CPD knocked and waited? I don’t. Do you know if they tried to get the guy enroute to or from work first? I don’t. I agree with you, pre-planning, caution, adequate investigation, is all necessary. On your numerous drug ops, if you knew the targets were armed, did that change your tactics? Maybe the CPD knew about the gun (maybe a pot smoker would brag to his buddies – say the CI – that he got a piece). I don’t know, neither do you. That is all I am saying.

  23. Chuck says:

    Oh yeah like most cops I’m an alcoholic so my mind slips from time to time and I forget to mention some things, by the way I am enjoying a beer right now (that might explain my poor writing as noticed by TC earlier). Anyway, I’ve mentioned this elsewhere but thought it might be appropriate here: these crooked CPD cops recorded the .223 round on the search warrant return didn’t they? Why? If they’re so crooked why didn’t they just pocket it and throw it away later? And, if they are so brutish, militaristic, fascist, violent, aggressive, etc. etc. etc. why, especially now that we know there were 14 of them on the scene, didn’t they riddle that house with bullets after one of their own was shot and killed before their eyes? Restraint? Training? Professional? Good night.

  24. My list of friends is short but stalwart.

    And I’ve known him as a civilian and a police officer. As it stands, his opinion on the present state of law enforcement officers is slowly creeping towards disdain. I won’t go into it any further as I’d be putting words into his mouth. Of course, he’s an anomalous officer as he has a college degree.

    And could you provide a link to the warrant?

  25. Chuck says:

    Here it is:

    http://hamptonroads.com/2008/01/informant-told-police-frederick-was-growing-pot-garage

    College degrees are great and I think everyone should have an education, but they don’t make people do the right thing. Law enforcement as a profession is leaning more and more to requiring them and I agree with that, but don’t doubt for a second that we will still have cops with no people skills that help to alienate us from the people we are supposed to be working for. I hope your friend doesn’t get so discouraged with some of his peers that he forgets the good that he can do as a professional. I strongly believe the following: community participation and support is the only way a police department can be succesful and interpersonal skills and ethical training for individual officers will provide tools that are more essential to the job than defensive tactics or firearms. You’ve got to use your mouth and mind first (speak like you’re on camera or your talking to your grandma), everything else should be a last resort.

  26. His good is limited by how effective he is allowed to be. If the rest of the force are people who idolize Rambo, Shivers for instance, then this is where you end up.

    Ok, having read both warrants I have a few points to go over.

    First warrant:

    1) “Too include all out buildings on the property.”

    Ok, that’s cleared up.

    2) Brackets denote [Ed], “Your [A]ffiant has attended over 100 hours of narcotics related training, and is deemed an expert in narcotics distribution in the Chesapeake Court [s]ystem. Your Affiant is familiar with the distribution and cultivation of marijuana, and their elements.”

    I take issue with this because of:

    2a) “Your AfEant was given information by a Confidential Informant (CI) about a white male named Ryan Frederick growing and selling marijuana. The CI stated Frederick was growing marijuana in the detached garage of the residence at 932 Redstart Avenue. The CI stated the marijuana was growing in portable shelters with a hydroponic system.”

    That whole thing is a complete fabrication.

    2b) “Within the past seventy-two hours your Affiant was advised by the above CI of marijuana grow operation at 932 Redstart Ave.”

    Lie

    2c) “The CI was inside the residence and observed an amount of marijuana plants in the detached garage of the residence.”

    Lie, he was in the garage and saw no such thing.

    2d) “The CI was detailed in describing the stages of growth of the different plants inside the garage. The CI stated the plants are in a portable closet type casing.”

    Lie

    2e) “The CI observed “grow lights” and a hydroponic watering system”

    Which were being used for Japanese Rock Maple, banana, and tomato plants, which everyone in the neighborhood knew he was growing.

    2f) “Based on the above information your Miant believes Ryan Frederick is growing and possessing with the intent to distribute marijuana.”

    This is the work of an expert?

    2g) “The CI observed an amount of plants in different staged of growth…”

    He did not.

    Second warrant:

    1) “Homicide in violation of Virginia State Code 18.2-32”

    Ok, it’s 1st degree murder because it’s a cop.

    “The willful, deliberate, and premeditated killing of a law-enforcement officer as defined in § 9.1-101 or any law-enforcement officer of another state or the United States having the power to arrest for a felony under the laws of such state or the United States, when such killing is for the purpose of interfering with the performance of his official duties;”

    The sticking point here is “and premeditated.” They’re going to have to prove he was setting out to kill a cop. That doesn’t wash.

    2) Items recovered:

    2a) 1-wooden door (broken)

    Why is the door broken if Ryan fired through the door? He was arrested after he gave himself up to officers. If the door was broken by Shivers correctly then there wouldn’t have been a need or an opportunity for the door to have been shot through. If he gave himself up then there was no need to break the door more thoroughly. This doesn’t add up.

    2b) 1-projectile

    There’s no mistaking the difference in caliber between a .380 and a .223. Why is it not described more fully? It’s more likely to mistake a 9mm and a .380. Was a shot fired from an officer’s sidearm as well as an assault rifle?

    2c) Samsung TV

    Um, why? Although without knowing the layout of the house it’s plausible that a projectile went through it but still, why?

    2d) prybar, battering ram, shoe, flashlight

    The last four items make it sound like them cleaning up after themselves. Odd that.

    Now for some new information from here:
    http://www.reason.com/blog/show/125136.html

    “Three separate people close to Frederick told me that Frederick and Broccoletti are now aware of the informant’s identity. All three said it’s an acquaintance of Frederick’s, that the informant has a criminal record, and that it was the informant who broke into Frederick’ house three days before the raid.”

    “Friends, neighbors, and two of Frederick’s former roommates confirmed to me that Frederick is an avid gardener. The yard behind his home includes an elaborate pond with fish, and a variety of tropical plants. Several people also confirmed that he did in fact raise Japanese Maples.”

    “The neighbor I spoke with says Frederick has near unanimous support from his neighborhood. I say “near” because, oddly enough, I was told Chesapeake’s police chief apparently lives one street over. But the people I spoke with say they know of no neighbors who heard any police announcement the night of the raid. The houses in Frederick’s neighborhood are spaced fairly close together. And the raid was early enough—8:30pm—that they say if the police had announced loud enough for a sleeping Frederick to hear, several people nearby should have heard something, too. Thus far, it seems that no one did.”

    “The same neighbor said she and Frederick’s other neighbors don’t believe Shivers was in the yard when he was shot, as Ebert asserted at last week’s bond hearing. This neighbor also says that only Shivers and his partner served the warrant, not the 13 police officers Ebert also claimed at the hearing. “When my dog started barking, I went outside,” the neighbor told me. “I only saw two cops. The others only started showing up after Detective Shivers was already down.””

    “It’s significant that Frederick has support from the peopel who live around him. One woman I spoke with says there’s little tolerance in the neighborhood for drug dealing. She said she’s called the police herself on a house nearby that was known to be slinging dope. If Frederick were dealin, she says, his neighbors would be glad to have him out of the area. Instead, they’re coming to his defense.”

    These things, taken as a whole do not satisfy my curiosity and do not make me feel comfortable.

  27. Chuck says:

    I’m not here to defend the CPD. I’m just offering an opinion from my perspective as a cop. I’ve never heard of a defense team spreading mis-information by the way, doesn’t happen. Everyone is totally above board on this: Frederick, the neighbors, everyone, well except the police, they’re liars. In essence that is what everyone is saying. We’ll see how it plays out in court (but that won’t matter either unless there is an acquital, nothing else will satisfy those on this site that already know the answers and have it all figured out.)

  28. Reid Greenmun says:

    Only TWO officers attempted the first effort to invade Mr. Fredrick’s home.

    The other 12 LEOs went to Mr. Fredrick’s home AFTER shots were filed and an officer was CPD killed.

  29. Chuck,

    Credit where it’s due:

    “I strongly believe the following: community participation and support is the only way a police department can be succesful and interpersonal skills and ethical training for individual officers will provide tools that are more essential to the job than defensive tactics or firearms. You’ve got to use your mouth and mind first (speak like you’re on camera or your talking to your grandma), everything else should be a last resort.”

    I feel like I can discuss this with you again, now.

  30. lookmanohands says:

    As a police officer, I don’t want to see an oversight comittee comprised of lay people. Like any other professional, I have an insight into my job that can’t be transferred to someone who doesn’t do it every day. Cops have enough stress without being subjected to what would amount to a jury trial every time a citizen files a complaint.

    That said, I do believe that the police have an obligation to be able to justify every action they take, if called upon to do so. I posted the below comment in the Pilot today, in response to the lastest article ref Frederick’s phone records:

    “How about a new section of the search warrant affidavit that addresses the justification for the METHOD used to serve the warrant? This section would document the facts known to law enforcement relating to officer safety, public safety, and the reasonable possibilities for evidence destruction at the time the warrant is served. The magistrate would not have the power to refuse the warrant based upon the content of this section, because the magistrate’s function is only to determine probable cause that the evidence is located at the place named in the warrant. This new section would list the facts available to the police at the TIME THE WARRANT IS SERVED. The tactics used in the service of the warrant would still be up to the police, but the Monday morning quarterbacking would be greatly diminished. And considerably more prudence would be excercised.”

    If it were implemented, there would be a record of the facts known to the police relevant to the tactics used in the service of a given warrant. Note the stipulation that the magistrate only weigh in on the Constitutional validity of the warrant, not the tactics. Again, lay people shouldn’t have authority to make unqualified decisions; tactics should be the venue of tacticians. Final decisions ref tactics would still be left to police supervisors.

    If existing known facts supporting a tactical decision in warrant service are documented BEFORE a warrant is served, two things are accomplished:
    1. The justification for tactics is a matter of record; much more easily investigated, challenged or defended if the circumstance should arise.
    2. By virtue of the same record, due prudence would be excercised by police supervisors when deciding the necessity for a given tactic.

    Again, this addendum wouldn’t even need to be seen by the magistrate reviewing probable cause for the warrant. It could be sworn to as being provided and attached by the investigating officer when the warrant is sought. It would then be a part of the warrant for the Court record. This transparency would go a long way toward the public trust.

    OK,OK…I know what’s coming. The SWAT guys don’t want to spell out their tactics in a public document. Please let’s head that one off now. If your department is embroiled in this type of litigation, your tactics are gonna be public record anyway. And it’s that kind of seige mentality that may have put you there in the first place.

    In the end, it’s all about bestowing the most authority upon the those who excercise the best judgement.

    I define good judgement as the ability to reasonably predict the outcome of one’s actions in a given situation, assesing cost verses benefit ref those actions, and ending with a reasonable profit. Can’t find a foot that fits that shoe in this case….

  31. Hi there – first off, longtime reader, first time commenter. I figured I should probably say thanks for posting this piece, and I’ll be back!

  32. zoznam says:

    zoznam…

    […]Howzabout That Citizen Review Board « Tidewater Liberty[…]…

  33. Annetta says:

    Annetta…

    […]Howzabout That Citizen Review Board « Tidewater Liberty[…]…

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