the full pages ad bragging about how great maricopa county is run which was published on july 4 in the arizona republic and the arizona tribune cost $30,000. the ads had pictures of all 5 of the maricopa county supervisors who are: Fulton Brock, Don Stapley, Andrew Kunasek, Max W. Wilson and bullet in the butt Mary Rose Wilcox. can you get this Al Macias says the idea for the ad was all his! "The idea for the ad was mine."
Subject: County ads
Date: Wed, 27 Jul 2005 17:24:01 -0700
From: "Al Macias - PIOX" email@example.com
To: "mike ross"
I apologize for the delay in responding to your inquiries regarding the cost of the July 4th ads run in the Arizona Republic and Mesa Tribune. As explained to you by another member of the Communications staff, I was out of town and unable to respond to your earlier requests.
The cost for the Arizona Republic ad was just under $25,000. The Tribune ad cost was a little under $5,000. The total cost was approximately $30,000.
Maricopa County publishes a limited number of the county's annual report. Our budget is available on-line as well as a great amount of other information about Maricopa County programs and services. Over the years the county has reduced the number of "hard" copies of reports we produce to cut printing costs. Nevertheless, many people are not aware of the programs and services available to them.
The idea for the ad was mine. As the Communications Director for Maricopa County it is part of my responsibility to educate and inform the public about county services and programs. This one-time ad was an attempt to notify the public about the Maricopa County budget, tax rate and other issues. Citizens should know how their dollars are being spent and we do all we can to inform our residents in a cost-effective manner. This ad was much cheaper than a direct mail effort, television campaign or other efforts to reach the county's 3.5 million residents.
At the same time, I thought residents would be able to use some of the information right away, which is why the ad included fireworks locations across the County.
As you may have noticed many governments, both locally and across the country, publish and distribute large numbers of reports, newsletters and other publications. Maricopa County does not. Some departments do distribute information on a regular basis to stakeholders and other interested parties. On the whole though, Maricopa County is very conservative in its print costs compared to other governments.
One of your earlier notes, I believe, implied that this was a "campaign" effort. None of the supervisors are currently up for election and this was not a campaign piece. In fact our office is scrupulous in assuring we adhere to Arizona election laws and do not do anything that might be considered inappropriate.
I have received several positive comments about the ad. I will review our strategy with county management to determine if there is a better way to inform and educate our citizens. We will continue to avail ourselves of whatever free media opportunities present themselves including increased use of the county website.
Thank you for your comments.
i bet phoenix is the only airport in the country that does this. is supect all the other airports wont replace their chain link fences with concrete barriars.
Airport fixes after security breach may cost $16 mil
Ginger D. Richardson
The Arizona Republic
Jul. 28, 2005 06:15 PM
A security breach at Sky Harbor International Airport last month may cost Phoenix more than $16 million to shore up the airport's perimeter.
A task force was charged with evaluating the 14 miles of fencing surrounding the airport after a man in a stolen truck was able to get onto the airfield June 30. The panel has recommended new cable-restraint systems and guard rails. They also want to beef up gated areas that could inadvertently give people access to the taxiway.
"That's the most problematic issue with the fencing, because you can't put up a steel cable or some other barrier in front of, or behind, a gate," Aviation Director David Krietor said.
In those areas, the airport is considering installing a special hydraulic barrier that could be raised in an instant if a vehicle were trying to break through the gate.
"This is an issue that we've been concerned about for a long time," Krietor said. "We can't have vehicles driving onto the airfield. That's just unacceptable."
The June 30 incident began when a man drove through an open gate into a fire station parking lot and smashed through a wrought iron fence to get onto the taxiway. He sped past several fully loaded planes before crashing into a second fence west of Terminal 2. More than 50 flights were delayed.
Suspect Damian L. Holmes, 28, of Phoenix, was indicted July 11 on auto theft, aggravated assault and unlawful flight charges.
Since the incident, officials have installed about 243 concrete barriers around the airport perimeter's most vulnerable areas. Another 110 will be in place by the middle of next month.
Airport staff will spend the next few months analyzing each of the task force's recommendations. They will then forward a more detailed report to the Phoenix City Council for final approval. That report will include updated cost estimates, and a timeline for getting the work done.
Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon said Thursday that he couldn't imagine a scenario in which the City Council would not sign off on the additional costs
"(We) are not going to put a pricetag on the safety of the passengers or on the public officials that protect us," Gordon said in a telephone interview from San Diego. "I am absolutely confident that the recommendations will be implemented without hesitation."
Once the proposals are approved, it will likely take another nine to 12 months before the new barriers are installed, officials said.
The roughly $16 million in new expenses will be in addition to the more than $1 million that the airport spent in the last year or so on fence-line improvements.
Well before the June 30 breach, Sky Harbor officials conducted an overall security review and decided to raise perimeter fencing to 8 feet in height, 2 feet higher than federal standards. The airport also has been replacing barbed wire along the top of the fences with razor wire, officials said. That project is about 60 percent complete.
Overall, airport officials have earmarked about $100 million over 10 years for homeland security improvements, which have so far included bomb-proofing key areas of the airport, installing explosive-proof garbage cans, instituting a new fingerprinting system, placing barricades in front of doors and beefing up the number of bomb dog teams on the premises.
Staff writer Michael Kiefer contributed to this report.
Reach the reporter at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (602) 444-2474.
hey laro! there are some other criminals out there who are just as dangerous as you. this 67 year old granny is one of them. she is guilty of the henious crime of honking her car horn at a piggy. this old lady is so dangerous the piggies had to taser her.
Tasered grandmother gets probation
Jul. 28, 2005 02:53 PM
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - A 67-year-old grandmother who was shocked with a Taser stun gun after she honked her car horn at a police cruiser has been given a year's probation for sparking a quarrel with officers.
A charge of improper use of the horn against Louise Jones was dismissed Wednesday in Kansas City Municipal Court. Her husband, Fred, 76, who became involved in the fray last year, also got one year of probation for the same charges — resisting arrest and attempting to inflict injury on an officer.
The only condition of the probation is that the couple obey all laws.
The incident, which resulted in a change in department policy and the disciplining of two officers, happened in June 2004 as police were responding to a disturbance call across the street from the couple's home. Officers said they approached Louise Jones after she honked her horn, thinking she had reported the disturbance or perhaps was in trouble. A defense witness testified the honk was accidental.
"She immediately became hostile to us," Officer Ryan VanDeusen testified. He said that she continued the verbal assault when the officers returned to their squad car.
"It was very loudy, it was antagonistic, it was very derogatory toward my partner and I," he testified.
Officer Cory LeMoine said he told Jones he could give her a ticket for honking the horn, and that a physical confrontation began after she wouldn't show him her driver's license. He said he and his partner struggled with Jones both inside and outside her house. The officers said that while VanDeusen was trying to handcuff her, Fred Jones came down the stairs and leveled his shoulder into him.
VanDeusen said he used the Taser on Louise Jones when his partner couldn't get her under control.
The Jones disputed the officers' account. Louise Jones and other defense witnesses said she wasn't confrontational and that the comments she made were directed to a friend, not to the officers.
"She says something to the neighbor across the street and the officer didn't like that," said defense attorney Basil North. "He decided he was going to teach her a lesson."
Louise Jones said she pulled away from the police when one of the officers grabbed her arm, and her husband said one of the officers had his knee on his wife's chest.
Municipal Judge Marcia K. Walsh told the couple they should fulfill their sentence easily, pointing out that Fred Jones' criminal history was perfect except for a traffic ticket.
"Your record is even better," she told Louise Jones. "You don't even have a ticket."
The couple's attorney said they plan to appeal the decision. North moved for dismissal of the horn-honking charges on grounds that the ordinance involved was worded vaguely, and the prosecutor agreed to drop it.
Instalarán “chips” en visas fronterizas
Por Adriana Elektra Sánchez
Julio 27, 2005
El cruce fronterizo entre las ciudades vecinas de Nogales, Arizona, y Nogales, Sonora, es uno de los más transitados en el país, de acuerdo con el Departamento de Seguridad Nacional de Estados Unidos.
Con el propósito de realizar un seguimiento de la estadía de personas que solicitan la forma I-94 (documento que autoriza la entrada a los Estados Unidos más allá de la zona fronteriza) el Departamento de Seguridad Nacional incluirá un “chip” en el permiso de cada persona.
Según Kimberly Weissman, vocero del Departamento de Seguridad Nacional en Washington, la unidad de radiofrecuencia enviará señales a una base de datos central en la cual se conocerá la fecha de entrada y salida de las personas que utilicen el permiso ya sea una sola vez o en repetidas ocasiones.
Anteriormente las personas especificaban manualmente el tiempo que se quedaban en el país los que según expertos facilitaba que utilizaran los permisos para quedarse en el país más tiempo e incluso para trabajar dentro de Estados Unidos.
Bajo la nueva medida, solamente las personas menores de 14 años y mayores de 79 podrán obtener el documento sin que lleve el “Chip”.
“Es importante para nosotros saber si la gente respeta las fechas que se especifican en sus permisos, no hacerlo podría resultar en que se les nieguen futuros permisos”, informó.
La mediada comenzará a implementarse a partir del 4 de agosto en las fronteras de Nogales, Arizona, Alexandria Bay, en Nueva York, y Peace Arch, en Washington.
“Decidimos elegir estos tres puntos de entrada para darnos una idea del flujo de personas que se internan a los Estados Unidos por diferentes puntos del país”, indicó la vocero.
El programa piloto terminará en la primavera de 2006 y se espera que los resultados que se obtengan determinen si se justifica el gasto de implementarlo en otros puntos fronterizos del país.
Las personas que tengan sus permisos vigentes no serán afectadas hasta que su documento expire y traten de renovarlos nuevamente.
Contacte al reportero email@example.com
the new times also wrote a story about this guy. he was f*cked over by a crooked phoenix pig.
Enfrentará a los tribunales por tercera vez
Por Valeria Fernández
Julio 27, 2005
Un latino acusado de golpear a un oficial de policía de Phoenix deberá presentarse ante los tribunales para enfrentar por tercera vez un cargo por asalto con agravantes el 11 de agosto.
Luciano Arriaga Jr. pasó 20 meses en la cárcel con una sentencia de 10 años que el mismo juez catalogó de “excesiva”, hasta que la Corte de Apelaciones anuló la condena porque no fue un “juicio justo”.
Arriaga ya ha enfrentado dos juicios, y la primera vez fue hallado culpable de resistir el arresto. Durante la segunda ocasión, la fiscalía manipuló la información de su convicción anterior para presentarlo como una persona con antecedentes criminales.
“Es una injusticia que lo lleven una vez más a juicio”, declaró su padre Luciano Arriaga Sr. “El policía hizo todo mal y quieren castigar a mi hijo por tratar de protegerse”.
La Procuraduría del Condado Maricopa que enfrentó la crítica de políticos y activistas de derechos civiles, no quiso explicar sus razones para proceder con los cargos una vez más.
“Nosotros estamos seguros de este caso, él decidió que quería ejercitar su derecho constitucional de tener un juicio”, se limitó a declarar Crystal Garza, portavoz de la Procuraduría del Condado Maricopa.
En cambio, para el representante estatal Ben Miranda, las acciones de la procuraduría son “un abuso del sistema de justicia”.
Hasta el momento, Arriaga sigue asegurando que es inocente y ha rechazado cualquier oferta de aceptar una sentencia inferior a cambio de declararse culpable.
“Seguir adelante con esto es decisión de ellos”, dijo Arriaga Jr. a La Voz. “No tengo intenciones de firmar ningún acuerdo”.
El 6 de febrero de 2002, Arriaga se dirigía a una tienda de repuestos mecánicos cuando el oficial Warren Poole comenzó a seguirlo por presuntamente haberse pasado un alto.
Según testimonios y reportes policíacos, cuando Arriaga se estacionó en un callejón, el oficial pensó que se escaparía y lo tomó del brazo. Los dos hombres forcejearon en medio de la confusión por al menos 3 minutos. Poole lo arrojó al piso y en ese momento Arriaga, temiendo por su vida, lo golpeó con una viga en la cabeza.
Poole, quien es actualmente un instructor en la Academia de Policía, había sido destituido de su cargo como agente del grupo SWAT meses antes, debido a que una investigación interna reveló que había estado conduciendo bajo la influencia de alcohol fuera de su horario de trabajo.
Debido a los antecedentes del policía y a inconsistencias durante sus testimonios en lo dos juicios, el procurador Andrew Thomas debería abandonar el caso, declaró el reverendo Oscar Tillman, presidente de la Asociación para el Avance de las Minorías (NAACP, por sus siglas en inglés).
Actualmente la Ciudad de Phoenix enfrenta una demanda civil por parte de Arriaga. El Departamento de Policía indicó que el oficial Poole no quiere dar entrevistas a los medios de comunicación.
Edición en línea - Principal
Edición: 721. Del 27 de julio al 2 de agosto
Ya instalaron sensores de registro de salidas
El gobierno federal ya instaló en las dos garitas de Nogales, Arizona, los sensores de registro especial para verificar las salidas de turistas.
De esta manera, todo está listo para que empiece a operar la segunda fase del programa US Visit, mediante el que se cierra el círculo de seguridad para registrar entradas y salidas de personas que llegan como turistas al estado de Arizona.
Como se recordará, este es un programa piloto que luego se extenderá a toda la zona fronteriza de Estados Unidos con México y Canadá.
El propósito es fortalecer los operativos de seguridad y evitar la entrada de personas que pongan en riesgo la tranquilidad de la sociedad. Marco López, director de la Comisión Arizona-México, dijo que sin duda este tipo de mecanismos han generado incertidumbre entre los empresarios de las ciudades fronterizas porque temen que el impacto será muy severo, ya que desestimulará al turismo.
Sin embargo, reconoció que no hay nada qué hacer para evitar que estas medidas entren en vigor, ya que lo que intenta hacer el gobierno federal es evitar que Estados Unidos sea víctima de un nuevo ataque terrorista.
El gobierno estadounidense ha creado ya una base de datos con fotos y huellas digitales de toda persona que ha ingresado a este país desde enero del 2004.
El objetivo principal es detectar y frenar el ingreso de terroristas, según el argumento de las autoridades
Esto es parte de su lucha antiterrorista, han dicho funcionarios del gobierno federal.
Este banco de datos con fotografías y huellas digitales de todo visitante que entre en el país, es un sistema similar al que se usa para rastrear a criminales.
El encargado de la seguridad fronteriza de EE.UU. dentro del Departamento de Seguridad Nacional, Asa Hutchinson, ha explicado que el programa “U.S. Visit” (“U.S. Visitor and Immigration Status Indication Technology”) pretende identificar y rastrear a los extranjeros que entran por mar y aire y tierra al país. Hutchinson explicó que EE.UU. necesita esta “frontera virtual” para frenar el paso a terroristas y saber el propósito, paradero y estancia de todos los visitantes, sin interrumpir el flujo legítimo de bienes y personas. La ausencia de un sistema para verificar las entradas y salidas de extranjeros permitió que algunos de los 19 terroristas involucrados en los atentados de septiembre de 2001 vivieran en EE.UU. con visados caducados, según Hutchinson.
Bajo el programa, impuesto por el Congreso, las fotografías y huellas digitales de estos extranjeros -y posteriormente toda su información biométrica- serán revisadas con la ayuda de un escáner, contra una base de datos sobre presuntos terroristas, criminales o infractores de las leyes migratorias del país.
Esta información -nacionalidad, estatus legal y domicilio en EE.UU., entre otros datos- será recabada en los consulados de EE.UU. y evaluada por la Oficina de Cumplimiento del Depar-tamento de Seguridad Nacional. El programa afectará a quienes ingresan al país con visas de turismo, estudiantes o negocios, que el año pasado alcanzaron los 24 millones, o sea el 60 por ciento de todos los extranjeros.
También consolidará el controvertido programa de rastreo de miles de estudiantes extranjeros en el país, conocido como “SEVIS”.
RESERVAS DE LOS HISPANOS
Representantes de algunas or-ganizaciones como Migrantes sin Fronteras, Latinos Unidos, Chicanos por La Causa, Friendly House, entre otras, han manifestado su preocupación por las nuevas medidas de control para el ingreso de extranjeros a Estados Unidos.
Si bien estos grupos reconocieron que las medidas son necesarias y “positivas”, advirtieron que podrían afectar negativamente a los más de 3 millones de personas que ingresan anualmente a EE.UU. por Arizona.
Los nuevos controles podrían ocasionar no sólo retrasos, sino también “malos tratos”, según José Cortez, de la Diócesis de Phoenix.
Sheriff joe uses slave labor. dont laugh!!! slave labor is allowed by the us constitution! 13th. Amendment to the U.S. Constitution
Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
Edición en línea - Comunidad
Edición: 721. Del 27 de julio al 2 de agosto del 2005
Trabajo, la mejor terapia para los prisioneros
Estar privado de la libertad es uno de los peores castigos que un ser humano puede sufrir.
La mayoría escarmienta, se reforma, se reintegra a la sociedad y no vuelve a delinquir, en una palabra, aprenden la lección.
Sin duda alguna, el trabajo es la mejor terapia ocupacional que pueden tener, de esa manera se rehabilitan de una forma más efectiva.
“A mí me gusta trabajar y mantenerme siempre ocupado, así se me pasa el tiempo más pronto”, manifestó Armando Soto, un joven de 22 años que cumple una condena de dos meses en la cárcel Tent City, tras ser arrestado por conducir en estado de ebriedad.
Lo mismo opinó Carlos López, recluído en la misma prisión también por manejar bajo la influencia del alcohol.
Ambos trabajan voluntariamente en la fábrica de hielo de la cárcel Lower Buckeye; diariamente cumplen un turno de cuatro horas. Cabe recalcar que diariamente en ese lugar son producidas 20 mil 160 libras de hielo, de las cuales 7 mil son consumidas cada día por los propios presos.
Por órdenes del sheriff Joe Arpaio, el resto está siendo entregado a albergues que dan refugio a personas sin hogar.
Al respecto, Carlos López dijo: “Uno se siente muy bien haciendo esto, porque creo que hasta estamos ayudando a salvar vidas”.
Comentó que por la televisión está enterado de que varias personas, la mayoría indigentes, han muerto en Phoenix a causa del calor.
López destacó que el sistema carcelario del Condado Maricopa, a cargo del sheriff Joe Arpaio, cuenta con excelentes programas para que los prisioneros aprovechen el tiempo y se rehabiliten.
Por su parte, Armando Soto señaló que está muy agradecido con la oportunidad que le dan de trabajar y aprovechar el tiempo.
El custodio Nehemías Béjar indicó que el sheriff pone una gran variedad de recursos a disposición de los reos para que deveras se rehabiliten, y una vez que salgan de la cárcel hagan algo positivo para la sociedad.
Señaló que debido a las extremas temperaturas y a las muertes registradas, el sheriff decidió que parte del hielo producido en la cárcel sea entregado a organizaciones como San Vicente de Paul para que lo hagan llegar a los indigentes.
a big f*cking waste of money!!!!
Edición en línea - Principal
Edición: 721. Del 27 de julio al 2 de agosto del 2005
Es permanente alerta en aeropuerto
La alerta en el aeropuerto Sky Harbor de Phoenix es permanente, por lo que continuarán llevándose a cabo inspecciones exhaustivas a los viajeros, señaló Nico Melendez, portavoz de la Administración de Seguridad en el Transporte (TSA, por sus siglas en inglés).
El funcionario recordó a los viajeros la importancia de revisar bien sus equipajes antes de llegar al aeropuerto a fin de que eviten retrasos innecesarios o incluso ser arrestados por traer artículos prohibidos.
Durante las vacaciones de verano, el aeropuerto de Phoenix incrementó hasta un 100 por ciento el nivel de usuarios. Cada año estas instalaciones reciben un promedio de 40 millones de viajeros, convirtiéndose en el quinto más ocupado del mundo.
Ante tal situación, oficiales de la TSA recordaron a los viajeros que si no desean tener problemas de retraso o pérdida de sus vuelos deberán poner atención a los artículos que cargan en su equipaje personal.
De acuerdo con Nico Melen-dez, las medidas de seguridad se han intensificado de tal manera que simples objetos como encendedores y prendedores con punta pasaron a formar parte de la amplia lista de artículos prohibidos.
Durante una conferencia de prensa, el funcionario mostró varios de los artículos decomisados en lo que va del año en el aeropuerto de esta capital arizonense.
Entre dichos artículos había encendedores, prendedores para el cabello, espátulas de metal, desatornilladores eléctricos, martillos, entre otros objetos que pueden ser peligrosos en manos de terroristas.
Meléndez, informó que cada mes oficiales de la TSA incautan más de un millón de objetos prohibidos.
Desde los atentados terroristas del 9/11 se reforzó la seguridad en los aeropuertos de toda la nación, elevando en varias ocasiones el nivel de alerta. Recientemente, los atentados terroristas ocurridos en Lon-dres, provocaron que se incrementara el nivel de alerta.
Sin embargo, esta situación será permanente, de acuerdo con el portavoz de la TSA.
“El motivo que nos trae este día acá es para recordar a los pasajeros que independientemente del nivel de alerta que haya en el aeropuerto, nosotros apelamos a su conciencia para que nos ayuden a hacer más ágil las revisiones y evitarles demoras innecesarias”, expuso.
Cabe mencionar que previo a la conferencia, un hombre fue arrestado tratando de cruzar el puesto de control de seguridad llevando un arma blanca entre sus pertenencias.
El pasado 30 de junio un presunto robacarros se introdujo violentamente al estacionamiento del aeropuerto, provocando alarma entre los pasajeros y una fuerte movilización de parte de varias agencias policíacas.
Police chase that led to crash violated policy, memo says
The Arizona Republic
Jul. 30, 2005 12:00 AM
Scottsdale police violated department policy by pursuing a wrong-way driver on Loop 101 that resulted in a deadly crash in April, an internal Police Department memo shows.
The findings come a month after Scottsdale police maintained that the chase was not out of policy and weeks after Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas announced he would seek the death penalty against driver David James Szymanski, who crashed head-on into a Ford Escort, killing a 22-year-old Scottsdale man.
The Scottsdale report comes as a number of Valley police departments are tightening their pursuit policies and training procedures.
Phoenix is revising its already-restrictive policy. Changes will take effect in September, Phoenix police Detective Tony Morales said.
Phoenix officers will only chase known, violent felons, a similar policy to that of the Peoria Police Department.
In 2003, the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office changed its pursuit policy, barring deputies from chasing drivers suspected of committing minor traffic violations or property crimes.
That change came seven years after a suspect being tailed by sheriff's deputies slammed into Jennifer Lynn Rice's car weeks before her wedding.
In the years since her daughter's death, Liz Rice, a Valley nurse, has worked with Sen. Linda Aguirre, D-Phoenix, for a state law that would monitor rules regarding the decision to initiate pursuits.
This year, the bill died in committee. For Rice, it was a bitter loss. Strengthening state oversight of pursuits is "the right thing to do," she said.
But Phoenix's Morales said the law wouldn't be practical.
"Each one of these situations has its own intricacies and characteristics and working and moving parts. For someone to throw up a law that says you can't do this and you can't do that, that just wouldn't be a good idea at all."
In California, similar efforts over the past two years were thwarted in the state Legislature.
Kristie Priano, 15, was sitting in the back seat of her mother's minivan in a Chico, Calif., neighborhood when an unlicensed driver rammed their car, killing Kristie. The driver, also a 15-year-old girl, was being pursued by local police and fled.
California Sen. Sam Aenestad unsuccessfully attempted to pass "Kristie's Law," a bill that would have created a statewide policy for imminent peril, meaning departments were only to pursue if the person fleeing was a violent felon, similar to the Phoenix police policy. In California, police may not be held legally accountable if they do not follow pursuit policies.
"Kristie was an innocent bystander," said Kristie's mother, Candy Priano. "As more and more departments change to more restrictive policies, you see studies that are proving those policies save lives and do not make crime go up."
The review of the deadly Scottsdale crash made several recommendations, including more training and a clearer definition of the term "terminate the pursuit."
According to police reports, Szymanski had been drinking and was harassing an ex-girlfriend at an apartment complex. Officers tried to stop him as he was driving, but he refused to yield to flashing lights and sirens.
The report says that Officer Carrie Candler followed Szymanski as he ran a stop sign and seven red lights and sped through the streets of south Scottsdale at speeds 20-35 mph above the posted limit.
When Szymanski reached the 8600 block of East McDonald Drive, he maneuvered his Chevrolet Cavalier northbound on the southbound lanes of Loop 101.
Moments later, he crashed into a southbound Ford Escort, killing 22-year-old Cody Brett Morrison, who was on his way home from a concert in the West Valley.
His parents, Mark and Denise, declined comment on the findings. But their attorney, Matt Wright, said the report was "consistent with what we expected to see."
Police Chief Alan Rodbell would not comment on the findings Friday.
A jobs program for Phoenix cops? I certainly don't think we need to pay these piggys to bust teanagers who stay out after 10pm
Police step up enforcement of city curfew
The Arizona Republic
Jul. 30, 2005 12:00 AM
AHWATUKEE FOOTHILLS - Curfew breakers here will have more chances to get caught this school year.
The Ahwatukee Foothills Crime Prevention Task Force recently obtained a grant for a full-scale curfew enforcement program.
Daily curfew hours in Phoenix are 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. for ages 15 and younger, and midnight to 5 a.m. for ages 16 and 17.
The curfew enforcement program, which puts two off-duty patrol officers on the street in five-hour blocks, was scaled back in fiscal 2005 because of lack of funding. The task force later obtained enough money to have two officers patrolling eight nights.
This year, there is enough money for 26 nights of enforcement. Officers don't announce their schedules but often are out patrolling when teens are apt to be out late, such as when there is a varsity football game or a prom.
Police say curfew enforcement has proven benefits for Ahwatukee Foothills, including preventing idle teens from committing other crimes, such as underage drinking or criminal damage.
Curfew violators face a misdemeanor charge. Parents are contacted and asked to pick them up. First-time offenders can take a four-hour communication class for a fee.
"We have a lot of parents that assume their kids are behaving themselves," said Peggy Schaefer, a co-leader of the task force. "This curfew program awakens the parents to the fact that your kids are not at home doing whatever it is you think. Sometimes you need a wake-up call like that from a police officer saying, 'Are you aware your kid is breaking curfew?' "
Fierce battle erupts in Mexican town
Rival drug gangs use bazookas
Knight Ridder Newspapers
Jul. 30, 2005 12:00 AM
NUEVO LAREDO, Mexico - Warring Mexican gangs fought a pitched battle with bazookas and grenades late Thursday in a middle-class neighborhood of this border city, terrorizing citizens who say they live in a "Baghdad-like" war zone.
The battle was so fierce that the U.S. ambassador in Mexico City announced Friday that he was closing the consulate in Nuevo Laredo until at least Aug. 8. The announcement called the battle "an alarming incident" that involved "unusually advanced weaponry." U.S. Ambassador Tony Garza said U.S. officials will use the week to assess security.
For more than 30 minutes Thursday, the sharp report of automatic-weapons fire, punctuated by thumping explosions, could be heard throughout this city. After the fighting had ended, the street where the confrontation had taken place bore all the signs of combat. The house at the fighting's center was riddled with holes the size of melons. Part of it had collapsed. A building across the street was pocked with holes, indicating a fierce response with heavy weapons.
Hundreds of bullet casings from AK-47 assault rifles and other weapons littered the street. Cars, many with Texas plates, lay like victims, their windows shattered and their bodies scourged by bullet holes.
On Friday, there was no official police version of the events. Police said no one had been injured or killed, but splotches of blood stained the streets when a reporter and photographer arrived minutes after the shooting stopped.
The battle offered a glimpse of the challenge facing the Mexican police and army as they try to root out rival drug gangs battling for control of this critical border region south of Texas. Some 300 heavily armed soldiers in tanks, accompanied by state, city and judicial police and federal investigators, cordoned off the street while they inspected the devastated house and talked to neighbors. Most neighbors claimed they had heard nothing, even though the sound of explosions reverberated throughout this city of nearly half a million.
Those who did talk told a confusing tale of gunmen wearing the uniforms of the Federal Agency of Investigation, Mexico's FBI, arriving in front of the house at 2411 Mexicali St. in southern Nuevo Laredo, about two miles from the U.S. border, at about 8 p.m.
"Suddenly there were explosions; they launched bazookas and grenades and machine guns," said one man who witnessed the battle for about 20 minutes. Standing in a corner, the man pleaded that his name be withheld. "They'll kill me. It's become so dangerous," he said before rushing off.
A state policeman who asked not to be identified said investigators searching the house found photographs of 14 municipal police officers and a list of other officials "sentenced to death." He said the photos carried the men's names, nicknames, ranks and home addresses.
The fighting was the sort of violence outsiders rarely see, but soldiers and police at the scene said it was daily fare. The U.S. State Department has issued a warning urging U.S. citizens to stay clear of border areas.
"Obviously, but unofficially, gangs, mafias are trying to establish control of this city and that's why we have this wave of violence," Juan Antonio Jara, the interim chief state police investigator, said Thursday, hours before the violence.
Efforts to control the violence have had little effect. In January, President Vicente Fox sent at least 700 federal police officers, soldiers and special agents to Nuevo Laredo, Reynosa and Matamoros, the three most violent border cities in the state of Tamaulipas, to fight drug-cartel violence.
States opt for lifetime GPS tags on molesters
David A. Lieb
Jul. 30, 2005 12:00 AM
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - Technology that helps the military align targets and motorists find their way is being tapped to track some sex offenders forever.
Spurred by headlines of released sex offenders accused of murder, some states are mandating use of the Global Positioning System for tracking. Many lawmakers see electronic monitoring as a natural evolution of statutes that already require sex offenders to register their addresses with authorities.
Florida, Missouri, Ohio and Oklahoma passed laws this year requiring lifetime electronic monitoring for some sex offenders, even if their sentences would normally have expired. Similar bills have been proposed in Congress and other states, including Alabama and North Dakota.
But some civil rights experts and defense attorneys contend such requirements are too onerous and attach the stigma and inconvenience of electronic anklets and GPS transmitters to those who may never commit a crime again.
GPS monitoring makes sense for a small group of high-risk offenders, evaluated case by case, said John La Fond, a law professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and author of a new book, Preventing Sexual Violence.
"A law that requires that everyone who has committed a crime against a young child should be subject to lifetime locator technology is simply foolish," La Fond said.
After a registered sex offender was charged in March with killing 9-year-old Jessica Lunsford, Florida legislators mandated tougher prison sentences for people who commit sex offenses against children and required lifetime GPS monitoring after serving time.
Missouri Sen. Matt Bartle liked the Florida legislation so much that he copied and expanded it to include repeat sex offenders who commit crimes, such as exposing oneself to a child, that would otherwise be punishable by seven years or less of imprisonment.
Bartle said he intentionally cast a wide net.
"I think the general public is really not terribly confident that we're getting it right when it comes to pedophiles - that this individual case-by-case approach is leading to some very horrific situations," he said.
A new Oklahoma law also requires habitual sex offenders to wear GPS monitoring devices for the rest of their lives. Ohio's budget funds lifetime GPS monitoring only for people classified as sexually violent predators.
Many other states use GPS monitoring for selected people on probation or parole but the monitoring ends with the sentence.
People on the tracking system must wear the electronic waterproof ankle bands at all times and stay within a certain distance of their separate GPS transmitters, which can be carried on belts, in purses or set down on desks and tables when at work or home. The device is 3 inches long and tall and 1 1/2 inches wide.
Part of what makes the technology attractive is the ability to trigger automatic alerts to law enforcement authorities - by e-mail, cellphone text messages or faxes - anytime sex offenders approach off-limits areas such as a school or stray from their designated route.
Local authorities also have the ability to pinpoint a person's location at any moment - shown as a dot on a computer map that contains street names and the offender's traveling direction and speed.
The GPS technology is not foolproof, however.
Authorities in Boise, Idaho, say paroled child-sex offender William Lightner cut off a GPS bracelet and fled on July 23. Near Tallahassee, Fla., Kenneth Lamberton was wearing a GPS monitor awaiting a child-molestation trial when authorities say he tried to force one girl into a sex act and another to expose herself.
Both men had been assigned passive GPS devices that send information once a day. Florida is switching to the active GPS devices, which instantly alert authorities to any violations.
this reminds me of when the tobacco companies used to claim that smoking didnt cause cancer :)
Taser shocks ruled cause of death
Company disputes first such finding
The Arizona Republic
Jul. 30, 2005 12:00 AM
A Chicago medical examiner has ruled that shocks from a Taser were responsible for the death of a man in February, marking the first time that the electronic stun gun has been named as the primary cause of death.
This is the latest challenge to Scottsdale-based Taser International's claim that its stun guns have never caused a death or serious injury and comes a week after an Illinois police department filed a class-action lawsuit claiming Taser misled law enforcement agencies about the safety of its weapon.
The death is the 18th case in which a coroner has cited Taser as a factor in someone's death and the fourth case where Taser has been named as a cause of death. But in all of those, Taser was secondary to other factors such as drugs, heart conditions or mental illness.
An autopsy report from the Cook County's Medical Examiner's Office attributed the death of Ronald Hasse, 54, to electrocution from two Taser jolts delivered by a Chicago police officer. The autopsy said methamphetamines contributed to Hasse's death.
Taser strongly criticized the Medical Examiner's Office in a statement Friday and said it will challenge the autopsy.
"We believe that the scientific and medical community will publicly challenge this conclusion based upon the lack of credible evidence," Taser spokesman Steve Tuttle wrote in an e-mail on Friday. "Taser International will seek a judicial review of the report and the basis for which those statements were made."
This is not the first time Taser has challenged a medical examiner. For years, Taser officials publicly said the stun gun was never cited in an autopsy report. But an Arizona Republic investigation last year revealed that Tasers have been cited repeatedly by medical examiners in death cases and that Taser did not start collecting autopsy reports until last April.
Taser officials later maintained that the medical examiners in those cases were wrong and did not have the credentials or expertise necessary to examine deaths involving stun guns. They now maintain that Tasers have never been cited by a medical examiner as "the sole cause of death."
The Republic has identified 140 cases of death in the United States and Canada following a police Taser shock since 1999. Of those, coroners said, Taser was a cause of death in four cases and a contributing factor in 10 cases. In four other cases, medical examiners said Taser could not be ruled out as a cause of death.
In his e-mail on Friday, Tuttle said Hasse's death should likely have been blamed on the methamphetamines.
"We sincerely hope that a groundless opinion will not overshadow the medical and scientific community's conclusions as to the lethal levels of methamphetamine use," he said in the statement. "Overlooking this as a primary cause of death contradicts the very nature and purpose of these known lethal values."
Cook County Deputy Medical Examiner Scott Denton said that drugs alone would not have caused Hasse's death. A five-second shock followed by a 57-second shock pushed Hasse "over the edge," Denton told the Chicago Sun-Times.
"That's extraordinary," Denton said. "He became unresponsive and died after this."
Hasse, a former securities trader who was supposed to go on trial in June in the burial of a body on an Indiana farm, confronted officers in a Chicago high-rise.
Police said they used the Taser on Hasse when he tried to kick and bite officers during a struggle. He also threatened to infect paramedics with HIV.
After Hasse's death, Chicago police halted plans for a Taser expansion. Denton told the Sun-Times that police should stop using Tasers on people who are acting psychotic or appear to be under the influence of drugs.
Denton, who grew up in Scottsdale, did not return The Republic's calls for an interview on Friday. According to a Web site for the Illinois Coroners and Medical Examiners Association, Denton has worked at the Office of the Medical Examiner of Cook County for nine years. He is also an assistant professor in the pathology department at Rush University Medical Center. He got his medical degree from the University of Arizona.
Denton told the Sun-Times that he reviewed thousands of pages of information provided by Taser. But he said his conclusion was also based on the findings of James Ruggieri, an electrical engineer who in February made a presentation to the American Academy of Forensic Sciences in which he said Taser shocks could cause cardiac arrest.
Ruggieri, who is a forensic engineer and has consulted with police departments and the military on electrical accidents, said shocks from Taser could cause delayed ventricular fibrillation, the irregular heartbeat characteristic of a heart attack. He also said that multiple shocks from a Taser could cause someone to stop breathing and go into cardiac arrest. He said that many deaths involving Tasers have likely been wrongly dismissed as simple heart attacks or drug overdoses.
Taser has challenged Ruggieri's credentials and said its own medical and electrical experts dispute his findings. Taser maintains that its guns have undergone dozens of tests through universities and the Department of Defense, which support its claim of safety.
Tuttle said Friday that Denton should not have relied on "an unsubstantiated theoretical position of electrical safety as presented by James Ruggieri."
Ruggieri said that he doesn't know Denton. He said the doctor contacted him once in February to get a copy of his academy presentation. But Ruggieri said Friday that he is not surprised by the medical examiner's conclusion.
"It was only a matter of time," he said. "All of the impartial people - doctors, scientists, pathologists - took heed of this. They now have had facts to look at when presented with death cases involving Taser."
Taser, in a June 28 training bulletin, advised police that "repeated, prolonged and/or continuous exposures to the Taser may cause strong muscle contractions that may impair breathing and respiration, particularly when the probes are placed across the chest or diaphragm."
In training classes and instruction manuals, Taser has previously told police to use repeated shocks to control a suspect.
The stun guns have been sold to more than 7,000 law enforcement agencies in the country and are credited with reducing injuries and deaths to suspects and officers and lowering the number of police shootings. But several law enforcement agencies, including the department in Birmingham, Ala., and the Lucas County (Ohio) Sheriff's Office, have pulled the guns from the street.
Last week, Dolton, Ill., filed a class-action lawsuit against Taser, becoming the first police department to take legal action over what it described as Taser's exaggerated claims of safety. The city said it paid $8,572 for stun guns that are too dangerous to use on the street.
Taser stock, which soared last year, dropped by a third this year after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Arizona Attorney General's Office announced separate inquiries into the company's claims of safety.
The price of Taser stock was down about 26 cents on Friday, to $9.72 per share.
Private Prisons Experience Business Surge By DAVID CRARY, AP National Writer
NEW YORK - Though state governments are no longer fueling a private prison boom, the industry's major companies are upbeat — thanks in large measure to a surge of business from federal agencies seeking to house fast-rising numbers of criminals and detained aliens.
Since 2000, the number of federal inmates in private facilities — prisons and halfway houses — has increased by two-thirds to more than 24,000. Thousands more detainees not convicted of crimes are confined in for-profit facilities, which now hold roughly 14 percent of all federal prisoners, compared to less than 6 percent of state inmates.
Critics, including prisoners rights groups and unionized corrections officers, contend the policy amounts to a federal bailout of an industry that would otherwise be struggling with a checkered record. The companies and the government say they provide a flexible, economical alternative to building new federal prisons as get-tough policies boost demand for space in an overcrowded system.
"If the Bureau of Prisons is going to build capacity for themselves, they have to plan eight years in advance," said John Ferguson, chief executive of the Corrections Corporation of America, the biggest company in the field. "It takes a lot longer in the public sector than private sector to get things done."
The industry expanded rapidly in the 1990s on the assumption that business in a tough-on-crime era would grow indefinitely. But escapes and violence at a few private prisons, along with questions about cost savings, tempered enthusiasm.
Saddled with thousands of empty beds, CCA teetered near bankruptcy before new federal contracts helped it rebound. Since 2000, the Nashville, Tenn.-based company has doubled its number of federal prisoners to 18,200 — 29 percent of its overall inmate population.
"The federal government smiled on them just in time," said Judith Greene, a New York-based prison-policy analyst.
Business is certain to grow. Bureau of Prisons spokeswoman Traci Billingsley said the number of federal inmates is expected to rise from 185,000 to 226,000 by 2010, with private companies likely to be relied on for housing non-citizen immigrants convicted of federal crimes.
The number of people detained by U.S. immigration officials also is increasing rapidly — up three-fold in the past 10 years to more than 21,000 at a given time. In December, Congress passed a terrorism prevention bill calling for 40,000 additional beds by 2010 for aliens awaiting deportation.
Many of the detainees are housed at facilities run by CCA and its main rival, GEO Group — formerly Wackenhut. Both companies anticipate their detention business will grow.
"Those two are huge beneficiaries of overincarceration in the immigration system," said Lucas Guttentag of the American Civil Liberties Union's Immigrants Rights Project.
The private facilities are required to meet "rigorous federal standards," said Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman Jamie Zuieback. Yet critics insist privatization will lead to cost-cutting and accountability problems affecting detainees' welfare.
"They're putting in a system where it's easier to pass the buck," said lawyer Dan Kesselbrenner of the Boston-based National Immigration Project.
Rep. Ted Strickland (news, bio, voting record), D-Ohio, a former prison psychologist, tried unsuccessfully to block privatization approval in Congress. "When the primary goal is profit, that can and probably does lead to a variety of abuse," Strickland said. "I don't see any end in sight."
On the state level, there is no comparable boom for private prisons, but neither is there the bust some industry critics anticipated. As of mid-2004, private prisons housed 74,285 state inmates, compared to 76,763 in mid-2001.
About 30 states use private prisons, notably in the South and West. Texas has the most inmates in private facilities — more than 16,000; New Mexico has the highest portion of inmates in them — 43 percent.
Most states' policies remain unchanged since the 1990s and the bottom line is that overcrowding remains a stubborn problem.
Still, arguments persist over the pros and cons of private prisons, which pay lower average wages than government agencies. Whether this undermines performance is hotly debated, although federal researchers concluded in 2001 that high staff turnover did aggravate security problems at many private facilities.
Industry officials insist they have addressed such concerns.
"For those who think the public employee monopoly should be maintained, and sentencing advocates who believe we send too many people to prison, we're an easy target," said CCA's Ferguson. "But if I'm chief executive of a state, I'd see a value to having competition in my prison system."
The industry's future is bright enough that GEO Group is buying rival Correctional Services Corp., but prospects hinge largely on incarceration trends. Many states have balked at funding new prisons, and now face crowding problems they could ease by using private prisons or diverting some offenders to alternatives like drug-treatment programs.
"The drug war has been the main cause of profits for private prisons," said University of North Florida criminologist Michael Hallett. "We've gotten so extreme in overusing incarceration that we have for-profit industries with an interest in high crime rates."
Geoff Segal of the pro-privatization Reason Foundation predicted private companies will diversify their state business — offering more health and rehabilitation programs, for example.
"States with private prisons aren't going to get rid of them," Segal said. "It's a tough sell for a state to say it's going to spend more money on corrections rather than on Medicaid."
On the Net:
Prison statistics: http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/abstract/pjim04.htm
Americans join Canadians in protesting arrests on pot charges
Jul. 31, 2005 12:00 AM
VANCOUVER, British Columbia - All the cliches of a pot protest were there: the hackey-sac games, tie-dye T-shirts and small clouds of smoke floating above the crowd of about 200 people.
What wasn't to be expected at Saturday's Vancouver rally against the arrest of three Canadian B.C. Marijuana Party members was the support it received from visiting Americans.
Party leader Marc Emery, Michelle Rainey-Fenkarek, financial agent for the party and Greg Williams, an employee of Pot-TV, all face charges of conspiracy to manufacture marijuana, distribute seeds and engage in money laundering.
The United States wants the three extradited to the United States to face the charges.
Nick Frey, who was visiting from Los Angeles, stumbled across the protest while walking through Vancouver's "pot block," a city street that houses mostly marijuana-themed stores.
"It's not my problem because I don't smoke pot, but people should be alarmed. People should be able to do what they want to do."
Nebraskan Scott Tanner echoed the sentiment.
"Our government has overstepped its bounds," he said. "Whatever happens on this side of the border, it's none of our business."
The uplifting psychedelic rock music blaring from the B.C. Marijuana Party headquarters in downtown Vancouver didn't reflect the mood inside.
A donation box was set up inside asking for help for Emery, Rainey-Fenkarek and Williams as they face extradition for trial in the United States for selling marijuana seeds on the Internet and by mail.
A conviction on the charges carries a sentence ranging from 10 years to life in prison.
"We put these all in storage, this was in the bottom of my drawer," said Jodie Giesz-Ramsay, assistant editor of Cannabis Culture magazine, pointing to her T-shirt.
"We never thought we'd have to dig 'em out again. Today seems like a good day to do it."
The shirts feature a fist gripping a marijuana leaf and the caption "Free Marc Emery."
Giesz-Ramsay said they were made last year after Emery was sentenced to three months in jail for passing a joint at a pot rally in Saskatoon.
It was his eleventh drug-related conviction but the first time he was sentenced to jail.
"This is an attack on not just a business or it's not just the drug war, it's that they want this person, who refuses to stand down to the United States," Giesz-Ramsay said.
Officials in Seattle said Friday the three were indicted by a U.S. federal grand jury in May after an 18-month investigation by American police into the sale of marijuana seeds on the Internet and by mail.
Business is booming at county jail canteens
The Arizona Republic
Jul. 31, 2005 12:00 AM
The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office raked in more than $11 million during the past year from inmates' phone calls and commissary goods.
That's about double the amount collected five years ago.
In fact, business has gone so well, sheriff's officials say they used more than $5 million of that money to provide inmate programs and services this year. And they still have another $4.3 million left over.
All the money collected from phone calls and canteen sales goes into an "Inmate Services Fund," which is supposed to benefit inmates. Inmate advocates and jail officials believe the programs make for better-adjusted people once they get out of jail - and that, in turn, helps prevent them from returning.
Wanted: more classes
Although Sheriff Joe Arpaio said he wants to continue expanding the programs, the inmates are skeptical that they'll get what they want. What they want is more classes. And they want them now.
The inmates believe all the thousands of Honey Buns, sausage logs and Rice Krispie Treats they've purchased should have translated into even more pre-natal yoga classes and anger management sessions.
They complain that they still don't have access to many of the jail's "education and welfare" programs. There are long waiting lists. And many inmates aren't even aware of the services.
Arpaio does want to add more classes, ut he also has other ideas in the works.
The sheriff will use some of the funds to launch a radio program called KJOE for inmates this fall. Arpaio plans to spend about $2,800 to introduce the program to inmates in the Fourth Avenue jail. It will include a live show with the sheriff, music selected by the sheriff and educational programming that could include lessons in resume writing and interviewing techniques.
It may not exactly be the kind of thing inmates were hoping for.
Donna Hamm, executive director of Middle Ground Prison Reform, said that out of the thousands of people who pass through the jails every year, only a minuscule number actually get programs they need.
"There could be a lot more services in terms of vocational training and life-skill training," she said.
Proud of the programs
But sheriff's officials are proud of the programs they provide. The jails offer more than 60 programs and officials say about a third of the inmate population takes advantage of the services.
Programs range from GED classes and 12-step counseling to tax classes and animal welfare programs.
"We're well known for the programs we offer," said Thelda Williams, inmate programs division commander. "We're always encouraging inmates to participate. It's good for them."
Arpaio praised the use of the funds, saying the inmates are paying to educate themselves as opposed to being educated on the taxpayer's dime.
He said they have faced space limitations in the old jails, which should ease up with the opening of the new jails.
Of the more than $11 million in revenue generated in 2005, about $3 million paid for canteen operations, and $5 million went toward salaries and supplies for programs. The rest will be rolled over for next year.
Sheriff's officials aren't exactly sure how they will spend the extra $4 million just yet. Arpaio will have to get approval from the board of supervisors before he could start a new project with the money.
The fund pays for 53 staff positions, including teachers, chaplains, counselors and librarians.
"We try very hard to make sure we stay within the parameters of what the initial intent of (the fund) was," said Loretta Barkell, chief financial officer for the Sheriff's Office.
The office came under fire several years ago after money from the fund was used to help run and build the jails, including the expansion of Tent City housing.
Barkell said the office doesn't spend fund money on construction, but itmay use it for items such as computer software that benefit inmates.
Putting in requests
Inmates learn about the programs mostly through word-of-mouth.
Sialik Montiel, 26, has been in Estrella Jail for more than two months.
Montiel, who was arrested on a warrant for driving under the influence, said she hasrequested parenting classes and drug counseling, but she still hasn't been put on a list.
Williams said that the old jails lacked capacity for classrooms, and inmates sometimes faced a three to four week waiting list.
"They'll get in some program, absolutely," she said. "They may not get their first choice their first day, but they'll get something."
Inmate Guevara Truedicia, 35, said she'd like to see more educational programs. Even though they may only be in jail for a short period of time, she said, it's still an opportunity to learn.
"Somebody can learn fractions in four months. Somebody can learn to read a book in four months. Somebody can learn multiplication in four months," she said. "We don't have anything else to do."
Most jail inmates are either awaiting trial or have been sentenced to less than a year's imprisonment.
The sheriff's office provides its 10,100 inmates with a bunk, toilets, showers and two meals a day. Inmates usually have to pay for anything beyond that.
If they want to make a local phone call, it's $2.30 for 12 minutes on the sheriff's collect-call system. If they want to see a doctor, it's a $10 medical co-pay. If they want a bar of generic soap, it's $.75 (a bar of Neutrogena costs $3.70).
Inmates can order up to $100 worth of canteen goods every week. There are about 200 items available, everything from mascara and puzzle books to chili-in-a-pouch and Snickers.
Sheriff's officials take the money out of each inmate's personal account. Inmates without money receive an indigent package that includes five postcards, a pencil, toothpaste and a toothbrush.
Canteen Administrator Victoria Brown said they stress customer service, figuring happier inmates make for safer, more profitable jails.
"It's a tool to keep everyone manageable," she said, adding that officials can take away canteen privileges for those inmates who misbehave.
In the last two years, sales orders increased by 96 percent, she said.
Brown said staffers conduct market studies to make sure the prices are in line with vending machines and grocery and convenience stores.
But some inmates don't think the prices are fair. For example, inmates pay $1 for a package of Ramen-type noodles that generally costs less than 25 cents at grocery stores. Arpaio doesn't want to hear complaints about the prices or the food: "They're lucky they're getting anything. I don't have to do this. They can eat bologna all day."
Reach the reporter at firstname.lastname@example.org or (602) 444-4845.
Carter calls Guantanamo an embarrassment for U.S.
Jul. 31, 2005 12:00 AM
BIRMINGHAM, England - Former President Carter said Saturday that the detention of terror suspects at the Guantanamo Bay Naval base is an embarrassment and has given extremists an excuse to attack the United States.
Carter also criticized the U.S.-led war in Iraq as "unnecessary and unjust."
"I think what's going on in Guantanamo Bay and other places is a disgrace to the U.S.A.," he said at a news conference at the Baptist World Alliance's centenary conference in Birmingham, England. "I wouldn't say it's the cause of terrorism, but it has given impetus and excuses to potential terrorists to lash out at our country and justify their despicable acts."
But Carter said that terrorist acts cannot be justified, and that while Guantanamo "may be an aggravating factor . . . it's not the basis of terrorism."
Critics of President Bush's administration have long accused the U.S. government of unjustly detaining terror suspects at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base on the southeastern tip of Cuba. Hundreds of men have been held indefinitely at the prison without charge or access to lawyers.
"What has happened at Guantanamo Bay . . . does not represent the will of the American people," Carter said Saturday. "I'm embarrassed about it, I think its wrong. I think it does give terrorists an unwarranted excuse to use the despicable means to hurt innocent people."
Earlier this month, Carter called for the Guantanamo prison to be shut down, saying reports of abuses there were an embarrassment to the United States. He also said that the United States needs to make sure no detainees are held incommunicado and that all are told the charges against them.
Carter, who won the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize, has been an outspoken critic of the Iraq war.
"I thought then, and I think now, that the invasion of Iraq was unnecessary and unjust. And I think the premises on which it was launched were false," he said Saturday.
Anti-Mubarak protesters are beaten in Cairo
Nadia Abou El-Magd
Jul. 31, 2005 12:00 AM
CAIRO - Police and government supporters beat pro-reform activists with batons, sometimes kicking them as they on lay the ground, during a protest Saturday against President Hosni Mubarak's announcement that he would run for re-election for a fifth time.
The vote is the first in which Mubarak - in power for 24 years - will face an opponent, and his government has said it will serve as a launching pad for greater democracy. The United States also praised the elections, although Mubarak opponents are more skeptical.
On Saturday, several hundred men and women were gathering to begin their march toward Cairo's main square when men in plainclothes descended on them, swinging billy clubs and assaulting the demonstrators.
Burly government supporters surrounded activists sprawled on the pavement, kicking them in the head and ribs and tearing at their clothes. Others lifted protesters in the air by the arms and legs, hauling them off to police trucks. One elderly man wandered in a daze, his head bleeding.
"Down with the rule of the dog Mubarak!" one young man yelled as he was being clubbed.
The Interior Ministry said the demonstrators had gathered illegally and, after refusing warnings to leave, threw stones at police. Security forces dispersed the gathering, arresting 20 people, who were still being held, the ministry said in a statement. Others were detained and released.
Protesters denied any stones were thrown.
Most major opposition groups are boycotting the Sept. 7 election, calling Mubarak's move to open the vote to multiple candidates a sham. The 77-year-old Mubarak is expected to win easily.
There was similar violence in May during a constitutional referendum, when government supporters attacked and sexually assaulted several women during a reform protest.
That violence brought criticism from the United States, which has been pressing its ally to ensure the September election is fair and democratic.
During a June 20 visit to Egypt to press for reform, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice condemned the referendum assaults, saying the Egyptian government must "make certain that people can associate and can peacefully petition."
Leaders in Mubarak's ruling National Democratic Party have been promising to reporters - as recently as Thursday - that such violence would not be repeated.
But the assault Saturday was swift and heavy. The opposition had called for the demonstration to take place in Cairo's Tahrir - or Liberation - Square, the most prominent square in the capital, near the NDP's headquarters.
An Associated Press reporter at the scene saw up to 20 people being beaten. Two reporters from Associated Press Television News were also beaten. Activists ran, some weeping. Others staggered away from being assaulted, their pants and shirts torn open.
One activist, Karim al-Shair, was seen being dragged by his hair.
It was not known whether the attackers in plainclothes were members of the security forces or civilians, although they worked with riot police, who were lined up blocking the square and sometimes joined in the beatings.
More security planned for light-rail line
By Gary Grado, Tribune
July 31, 2005
The terrorist attacks this month on London’s transit system will likely lead to greater security measures on the Valley’s light-rail system. But what those measures will be is anybody’s guess.
The London attacks July 7 and 21 underscore how vulnerable transit systems are to terrorists, said Rick Simonetta, the CEO of Valley Metro Rail. And with attacks on other transit systems around the globe in recent years, security is increasing on systems like the light-rail line planned for the Valley.
The increasing level of terrorism is likely to result in more security for transit systems, Simonetta said, just as security has increased in recent years at airports and public facilities.
"There’s no question that will be the case," Simonetta said. "Who knows what kind of technology will grow out of all the studies that will be done and all the new products that will be developed."
Transit authorities are in the early stages of figuring out security plans for the Valley’s system, called Metro. A study later this year will include security needs, costs and who will oversee the effort. Officials expect a rough plan in about a year.
One possibility is Phoenix police overseeing security of the 20-mile, $1.3 billion system that will run through Phoenix, Tempe and Mesa. Officials will probably consider whether it makes sense to fold bus security into the effort and have a Valleywide transit police force.
Local police agencies deal with transit issues within their jurisdictions today, and the Regional Public Transportation Authority also has 53 unsworn security employees for bus service in Phoenix. That force is under control of RPTA today but will soon transition to Phoenix police, said Cmdr. Chris Shawkey, who oversees that city’s transit security.
The bus security force will soon include sworn officers as well, but Shawkey said the timing and number of sworn officers is still unknown. Likewise, the rail system will have a mix of sworn and unsworn officers.
"We’re still trying to determine what number to staff that with," Shawkey said.
Some security issues are known. Already, there are plans for cameras at the 27 light-rail stations and on every rail car.
"There will not be a spot on the vehicle that will not be under constant surveillance." Simonetta said.
Other measures, such as metal detectors, aren’t practical, Simonetta said.
The rail system will likely devote about 10 percent of its $25 million to $30 million annual budget to security, about what other rail systems spend.
The risk to the Valley’s transit system is difficult to assess because terrorists don’t always choose highprofile targets, Simonetta said. That makes any system vulnerable and requires transit officials to develop a security system the public trusts.
"Most people who ride transit have options," Simonetta said. "They’re not transit-dependent. You have to provide a safe and secure environment."
Contact Gary Grado by email, or phone (602) 258-1746
Jul 31, 2:22 PM EDT
Official alleges misspending of Homeland Security funding
MESA, Ariz. (AP) -- A top regional official for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has filed complaints with two government offices, seeking investigations into whether money for wireless technology to guard against terrorist infiltration has been misspent, a newspaper reported Sunday.
Charles Cape, the zone manager for the agency's wireless initiative in the Southwest, told the East Valley Tribune that as much as $60 million that Congress approved for wireless communications technology used by federal security agencies has been spent on bureaucratic expenses that have nothing to do with the program.
Cape said that has left the nation's southern border vulnerable and hindered efforts to ensure all federal, state, tribal and local agencies can communicate in the event of an attack.
Congress allocated $100 million specifically for the national wireless initiative at homeland security in 2004 and $86 million this fiscal year, which runs until October, according to congressional appropriations reports and agency officials.
Cape said none of that money has reached Arizona, the nation's busiest illegal entry point along the nation's southern border. "I've never seen one dollar since I've been out here," Cape said. "There's nothing. They've sucked it all up at headquarters."
Cape filed complaints with the Department of Homeland Security's inspector general and the independent Office of Special Counsel, the newspaper reported.
Homeland Security officials wouldn't comment to the newspaper about Cape's allegations. No one answered the phone when The Associated Press called Homeland Security's communications office on Sunday seeking comment.
Cape, who was put in charge of the region in June 2004, said he grew frustrated after he learned money wasn't available for basic systems that would greatly enhance security at the border with Mexico. When he began checking on why no money was available, he learned it had already been spent for other projects in violation of congressional directives, he said.
Cape said the $60 million figure is based on his analysis of the fiscal 2004 budget, which ended last October. He added he hasn't received any money this year and has yet to hear whether funds will be available when the new fiscal year starts in a few months.
Among the programs Cape says were funded out of the wireless appropriation, contrary to specific direction from Congress, is about $12 million for the Homeland Secure Data Network.
The network is supposed to allow federal, state and local agencies involved in homeland security to have secure access to classified information.
The agency's inspector general, Richard Skinner, concluded in a report issued in April that the network was designed without adequate consultation of those who would use it, and had not undergone the necessary testing to ensure it is secure.
Cape said he has been pushing for immediate acquisition of proven systems that would improve border security since he was assigned to the region. That would put the money on the front lines, as Congress intended, he said.
Cape has spent the last 16 years as a senior federal executive in charge of wireless technology and telecommunications in several agencies. Before his assignment in Arizona, he worked directly for former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge, until health problems forced Cape to take a new job.
Last year, Cape was put in charge of building a wireless communications network for Homeland Security agencies in the southwestern region, which includes Arizona, California, New Mexico, Texas, Nevada, Utah, Colorado and Oklahoma.
The wireless network would include components as simple as ensuring reliable service for hand-held radios used by U.S. Border Patrol agents and as complex as integrating sophisticated radar, sensors and cameras used to detect illegal border crossings.
Cathy Deeds, spokeswoman for the Office of Special Counsel, told the newspaper that she couldn't comment on an open investigation, or even confirm whether a complaint had been filed. A message left for Deeds by The Associated Press on Sunday wasn't immediately returned.
Larry Orluskie, spokesman for Homeland Security's office in charge of the wireless program, also told the East Valley Tribune that he couldn't comment on any allegations involved in an inspector general's investigation.
The reason Cape agreed to discuss his allegations with the newspaper was that he has gone through channels within the bureaucracy, and nothing seems to be getting done, he said.
How nice a place where nobody for 50 miles can call the cops. i call that freedom from government thugs. But the feds are spending $200,000 to give away free radios to get the locals to snitch on their neighbors and people who pass thru the area.
Jul 31, 12:22 PM EDT
Radios to help close gap between police and border residents
By ALICIA A. CALDWELL
Associate Press Writer
COLUMBUS, N.M. (AP) -- Kirk Zachek's chili pepper and wheat farm is in the middle of nowhere.
To the north is a winding two-lane, bumpy strip of asphalt known as state Highway 9. To the south is Mexico and the vast expanse of the Chihuahua Desert.
Nearly every day, Zachek spots illegal immigrants crossing his fields on their way north. But calling a law enforcement agency to report them isn't an option, he said. Cell phones don't work in this remote stretch of desert. The nearest land line can be almost an hour away when Zachek is working on his 5,000-acre spread, and even then it might be a long-distance call to reach anyone.
"Sometimes you can get ahold of somebody, and sometimes you can't," Zachek said.
Even when he does get someone, the closest officer is rarely near his property, Zachek said.
Recognizing ranchers' frustration, state and federal officials are now giving two-way, police-style radios to border residents. The direct connection to police dispatchers in three of New Mexico's seven border counties will allow residents to get emergency help or to more easily report illegal activity.
"If you call the ambulance one time the program is a success," said Robert Boatright, a U.S. Border Patrol assistant chief patrol agent in El Paso.
If ranchers and farmers feel comfortable reporting crimes, the radio program could also make volunteer border patrol groups such as the Minutemen unnecessary, Boatright said.
Minuteman volunteers, who plan to patrol parts of the border in New Mexico and Texas starting in October, gained international attention earlier this year when a contingent patrolled a section of the Mexican border in southern Arizona to stop the tide of illegal immigrants.
"If you liken this to a neighborhood watch program, people watch their own neighborhood," Boatright said. "People don't come (from other states) to watch your neighborhood."
The radio program, made possible with $200,000 in federal funds, was born in discussions at the Southwest New Mexico Border Security Task Force three years ago.
"The rationale was that this was an inexpensive way to better use the manpower, the resources we have on the border," said U.S. Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M. "These private citizens could contact ... law enforcement agencies very rapidly with these radios and keep them informed as to anything going on."
Local law enforcement officials said they don't expect ranchers and farmers to become a direct arm of the law, but any help is welcome.
But Bill Johnson, whose family owns more than 100,000 acres land along the border, said the radio program is an unwanted waste of money, and no one should expect help from his family. It's too dangerous, he says, because human smugglers and drug traffickers would want to know who is talking to law enforcement about their activities.
"They countersurveil us well enough that they know when we go to breakfast," said Johnson's son, James. "All these smugglers have is time and money."
James Johnson, who works alongside his father on the family onion farm, said his family used to use CB radios to call authorities when they saw something suspicious on their land. But then federal authorities told them that criminals in Mexico were watching them.
"I feel kind of guilty that we're not able to do anything about it, but our priority is our family," James Johnson said.
Brenda Mares, a spokeswoman for New Mexico's Homeland Security office, said the radios will be digitally encrypted. Law enforcement officials, including Luna County Undersheriff George Cabos, say that means it will be tough for traffickers to eavesdrop.
"They would have to have very sophisticated equipment," Cabos said.
Scanners are sold publicly for the type of radio New Mexico authorities plan to issue later this year - according to Internet listings they sell for about $500 - but Cabos said they will be useless without the proper frequencies, which federal, state and local authorities don't plan to release.
The Johnsons' concerns are understandable, Boatright said, but he points out that they don't have to volunteer.
"This is designed to provide communication to those who don't have it," Boatright said. "If you are not comfortable, then you should consider that."
For his part, Zachek, whose Rancho La Frontera abuts the Johnson property, said the radio program can't come fast enough.
Recently he discovered an older man, wearing a jacket and carrying water, who looked like he needed help. Zachek said he tried several times to reach authorities, even making long-distance calls to Deming, before giving up.
Then there's the more sinister elements, he said.
"About the worst is when you have one of these drug smugglers crossing the farm ... and the police at 50 miles away," Zachek said.
does oily foul-smelling paper really keep the dogs from finding coke??
Posted 7/26/2005 2:40 PM
Cocaine ends up at Austrian airport's lost and found
VIENNA, Austria (AP) — Police at the Vienna Airport on Tuesday found 24 kilograms of cocaine worth an estimated $16 million at a lost-and-found counter, police said.
The narcotics were in a suitcase that had been at airport lost items counter for almost a month, police said in a statement.
The drugs were placed in 22 bags wrapped in an oily foul-smelling paper, in an apparent attempt to irritate police dogs specially trained to detect narcotics, police said.
The suitcase had been by mistakenly checked in at Mexico City along with the luggage of a 60-year-old Austrian tourist, who had left it at the lost-and-found counter.
this high school teacher says that when teachers cant teach the parents should be blamed. great material for the folks who want to get rid of the government run public schools.
Poor penmanship a failure by parents
Aug. 1, 2005 12:00 AM
Regarding "Maybe teaching penmanship is lost art" (Letters Tuesday):
The letter writer blames teachers for poor penmanship, I'd like to ask this: Do you want public school officials to go door to door on a pre-emptive strike to see what children are doing in their first four years of life?
Put the responsibility where it belongs - on the parents. I taught my children to hold a pencil as soon as their muscles and motor skills would allow it so they could "sign their names" on cards or to write thank-you notes.
But I think I'm a rarity. Many kids have computers in their rooms by kindergarten and parents allow typed versions of what my children were asked to write in their own hand.
I tell my high school students, "If I can't read it, I won't grade it." And I warn them that their writing portions of AIMS or SATs require them to write neatly so the tests can be scored.
Penmanship is a lost art, but stop blaming the schools. Do dentists get blamed for tooth decay in kids?
Parents need to make their kids more school-ready, which includes discipline, manners, integrity (plagiarism is far more rampant than messy handwriting), penmanship, and yes, exposure to technology.
It seems a parent's responsibility for how a child turns out stops at the delivery room and it's the public schools that must shoulder the rest.
U.S. Resident Shot in Northern Mexico
Monday August 1, 2005 4:46 AM
MEXICO CITY (AP) - A U.S. resident was shot to death by a Mexican police officer in a settlement outside the Mexico border city of Ciudad Juarez, authorities said on Sunday.
Mexican authorities said the Saturday shooting happened when the officer lost his balance and fired by accident, moving to avoid a vehicle that had been pulled over for a traffic violation and unexpectedly started moving again.
Maria Guerrero, 29, a resident of New Mexico, was fatally shot in the back, said Chihuahua state police spokesman Carlos Gonzalez. The police officer was jailed pending an investigation.
``We're sorry for what happened,'' Gonzalez said. ``It was a regrettable accident.''
It was not clear whether Guerrero was a U.S. citizen.
The State Department last week renewed a travel advisory warning Americans about violence in Mexico, especially along the U.S. border.
he spent 19 years in prison and was denied parole four times because he refused to admit he was guilty. but he was released on monday when DNA evidence proved he didnt commit the crime.
DNA evidence frees prisoner
Served 19 years for a rape in Pa.
Aug. 2, 2005 12:00 AM
PITTSBURGH - A man who spent 19 years behind bars for a rape he did not commit was released from prison Monday after new tests of DNA evidence cleared him.
Friends and family broke into applause when a county judge dismissed charges against Thomas A. Doswell. About 30 minutes later, Doswell walked out of the county jail a free man, expressing thanks, not bitterness.
"I'm thankful to be home," he told the Associated Press from his mother's house. "I'm thankful justice has been served. The court system is not perfect, but it works."
Doswell, 46, was convicted in the 1986 rape of a 48-year-old woman at a hospital in Pittsburgh.
At the time, he was the father of two young children.
He was sentenced to 13 to 26 years in prison and was denied parole four times because he refused to accept responsibility for the crime.
Prosecutors originally opposed DNA testing for Doswell, but a judge ordered it. When the tests came back last month showing that semen taken from the victim was not from Doswell, prosecutors filed motions to vacate his sentence and release him.
Authorities plan to compare the DNA sample taken from the victim with national databanks but do not have any suspects.
i havent been to defcon since 1997 but it is a really cool convention. i like the spot the fed contest best. spot a fed and you win a t-shirt that says "i spotted the fed". just so the fed doesnt feel bad he gets a "im a fed".
at the 97 convention the feds started turning themselfs in to get the "in a fed" t-shirts.
Hackers Demonstrate Their Skills in Vegas Aug. 1, 2005
Even allegedly foolproof biometrics aren't totally safe at Defcon, the conference where crackers, hackers, and feds come to share tips and tricks.
By Greg Sandoval, The Associated Press
LAS VEGAS (AP)--Even the ATM machines were suspect at this year's Defcon conference, where hackers play intrusion games at the bleeding edge of computer security.
With some of the world's best digital break-in artists pecking away at their laptops, sending e-mails or answering cell phones could also be risky.
Defcon is a no-man's land where customary adversaries--feds vs. digital mavericks--are supposed to share ideas about making the Internet a safer place. But it's really a showcase for flexing hacker muscle.
This year's hot topics included a demonstration of just how easy it may be to attack supposedly foolproof biometric safeguards, which determine a person's identity by scanning such things as thumb prints, irises and voice patterns. Banks, supermarkets, and even some airports have begun to rely on such systems, but a security analyst who goes by the name Zamboni challenged hackers to bypass biometrics by attacking their backend systems networks. “Attack it like you would Microsoft or Linux,” he advised.
Radio frequency identification tags that send wireless signals and that are used to track a growing list of items--including retail merchandise, animals, and U.S. military shipments--also came under scrutiny.
A group of twentysomethings from Southern California climbed onto the hotel roof to show that RFID tags could be read from as far as 69 feet. That's important because the tags have been proposed for such things as U.S. passports, and critics have raised fears that kidnappers could use RFID readers to pick traveling U.S. citizens out of a crowd.
RFID companies had said the signals didn't reach more than 20 feet, said John Hering, one of the founders of Flexilis, the company that conducted the experiment.
“Our goal is to raise awareness,” said Hering, 22. “Our hope is to spawn other research so that people will move to secure this technology before it becomes a problem.”
Erik Michielsen, an analyst at ABI Research, chuckled when he heard the Flexilis claims. “These are great questions that need to be raised,” he said, but RFID technology varies with the application, many of which are encrypted. Encryption technology uses an algorithm to scramble data to make it unreadable to everyone except the recipient.
Also on hand at the conference was Robert Morris Sr., former chief scientist for the National Security Agency, to lecture on the vulnerabilities of bank ATMs, which he predicted would become the next “pot of gold” for hackers.
The Internet has become “crime ridden slums,” said Phil Zimmermann, a well-known cryptographer who spoke at the conference. Hackers and the computer security experts who make a living on tripping up systems say security would be better if people were less lazy.
To make their point, they pilfered Internet passwords from convention attendees.
Anyone naive enough to access the Internet through the hotel's unsecured wireless system could see their name and part of their passwords scrolling across a huge public screen.
It was dubbed the “The Wall of Sheep.”
Among the exposed sheep were an engineer from Cisco Systems Inc., multiple employees from Apple Computer Inc.. and a Harvard professor.
An annual highlight of the conference is the “Meet the Feds” panel, which this year included representatives from the FBI, NSA, and the Treasury and Defense departments. Morris and other panel members said they would love to hire the “best and brightest” hackers but cautioned that the offer wouldn't be extended to lawbreakers.
During the session, Agent Jim Christy of the Defense Department's Cyber Crime Center asked the audience to stand.
“If you've never broken the law, sit down,” he said. Many sat down immediately--but a large number appeared to hesitate before everyone eventually took their seats.
OK, now we can turn off the cameras, Christy joked.
Some federal agents were indeed taking careful notes, though, when researcher Michael Lynn set the tone for the conference by publicizing earlier in the week a vulnerability in Cisco routers that he said could allow hackers to virtually shut down the Internet.
Lynn and other researchers at Internet Security Systems had discovered a way of exploiting a Cisco software vulnerability in order to seize control of a router. That flaw was patched in April, but Lynn showed that Cisco hadn't quite finished the repair job--that the same technique could be used to exploit other vulnerabilities in Cisco routers.
Cisco and ISS went to court to try to stop Lynn from going public, but Lynn quit ISS and spoke anyway. In the wake of his decision, Lynn has become the subject of an FBI probe, said his attorney Jennifer Granick.
Many at the conference praised Lynn.
“We're never going to secure the Net if we don't air and criticize vulnerabilities,” said David Cowan, a managing partner at venture capital firm Bessemer Venture Partners.
And the vulnerabilities are plenty.
During his session on ATM machines, Morris said thieves have been able to dupe people out of their bank cards and passwords by changing the software in old ATM machines bought off eBay for as little as $1,000 and placing the machines out in public venues.
Aug 3, 3:03 AM EDT
Federal officials looking into Taser death
ATLANTA (AP) -- Federal officials are looking into the death of a man who was shocked multiple times with a Taser at the Gwinnett County Jail.
Meanwhile, another Georgia law enforcement agency has decided to stop using the stun gun.
Frederick Williams died in May 2004 after deputies stunned him five times within a minute at the jail.
On Tuesday, Gwinnett Chief Medical Examiner Steven Dunton said he received a letter from Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Plummer, who said he had been assigned to "review" Williams' death.
"They must be investigating it," Dunton said. "Why would he write this letter?"
A spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office in Atlanta refused to confirm or deny if there is a federal investigation of the incident.
Dunton had announced Monday that he would reevaluate the autopsies of Williams and Ray Charles Austin, another man who died after being repeatedly shocked with a Taser. That announcement was in response to a new safety warning by Scottsdale, Ariz.-based Taser International Inc. that said multiple shocks from the stun guns could cause death.
And as concern over the safety of Tasers grows, the DeKalb County Police Department has decided to stop using the 125 Tasers the department had. County CEO Vernon Jones said the company's new safety warning "just nailed the coffin" on the use of Tasers by DeKalb County police.
Deputies with the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office, a separate department, will continue to use Tasers in the county jail, Sheriff Thomas Brown said. But the department will revise its policies to conform with Taser International's new warning.
The Macon Police Department and the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office stopped using Tasers last year.
But Taser International maintains the stun guns are safe.
"The warning never indicated that our technology has caused death," Steve Tuttle, a company spokesman, said in an e-mail Tuesday. "The media has somehow managed to misrepresent this commonsense guideline into sensational and misleading headlines that could have serious adverse effects on the safety of law enforcement officers and citizens.
"Statistics from agency after agency show beyond a shadow of a doubt that an officer armed with a Taser device is far less likely to injure or be injured than one without this lifesaving tool."
Loophole may allow US crime spree
By Matthew Davis
BBC News, Washington
A loophole in US law may allow people to get away with any major crime within a 50-square mile "zone of death" in eastern Idaho, according to a Michigan law professor.
A small swathe of Idaho could be the venue for the perfect crime
This lawless oasis is said to exist on the edge of Yellowstone National Park because of a poorly drafted statute in the Sixth Amendment to the US Constitution.
Criminals are entitled to be tried by a jury drawn from the state and legal district they committed their crime in, the constitution says.
But, argues Prof Brian C Kalt, while Yellowstone comes entirely under the district of Wyoming, small parts of it spill into the states of Montana and Idaho.
"Say that you are in the Idaho portion of Yellowstone and you decide to spice up your vacation by going on a crime spree," Kalt writes in a forthcoming paper for the Georgetown Law Journal.
"You make some moonshine, you poach some wildlife, you strangle some people and steal their picnic baskets.
The jury would have to be drawn from the Idaho portion of Yellowstone which, according to the 2000 Census has a population of precisely zero
Prof Brian C Kalt
"You are arrested, arraigned in the park and bound over for trial in Cheyenne, Wyoming, before a jury drawn from the Cheyenne area.
"But Article III [Section 2] plainly requires that the trial be held in Idaho, the state in which the crime was committed.
"Perhaps if you fuss convincingly enough about it the case would be sent to Idaho.
"But the Sixth Amendment then requires that the jury be from the state - Idaho - and the district - Wyoming - in which the crime was committed.
"In other words, the jury would have to be drawn from the Idaho portion of Yellowstone which, according to the 2000 Census has a population of precisely zero.
"Assuming that you do not feel like consenting to trial in Cheyenne, you should go free."
No criminal defendant has ever broached the subject of the professor's loophole.
And there may be one or two holes, he admits.
It would be hard to limit your criminality to the specific area - meaning you could face conspiracy charges from the state you entered the park from.
Equally you could be charged with lesser offences that do not warrant a jury trial.
"The courts may or may not agree that my loophole exists," he says. "And in any case this essay is not intended to inspire anyone to go out and commit crimes.
"Crime is bad, after all. But so is violating the Constitution.
"If the loophole does exist it should be closed, not ignored."
Criminals have got away with murder before in England, the professor says, but not since 1548 when the law was changed.
Before then it often happened that a killer would strike in one county, but avoid punishment by ensuring the victim died across the county line, he says.
English juries could only consider crimes that occurred in their own county, so no jury could find the killer had committed all elements of murder.
DNA Tests Come to Prisoner's Defense
By ABBY GOODNOUGH and TERRY AGUAYO
Published: August 3, 2005
MIAMI, Aug. 2 - Luis Diaz says he was never a rapist. So do his children, former wife and colleagues. But in 1980, eight assault victims swore otherwise, and that was enough to send Mr. Diaz, a fry cook and father of three, to prison for life.
Skip to next paragraph
Alex Quesada for The New York Times
Luis Diaz, 67, said of his potential release from prison today, "I hope it's a reality and not an illusion." At left, Mr. Diaz in the 70's with his wife, Caridad, and their children, from left, Jose, Marilyn and Alberto.
Luis and Caridad Diaz with their children, from left, Jose, Marilyn and Alberto, in the mid-70's. Mr. Diaz's family has maintained his innocence.
On Wednesday, Miami-Dade prosecutors say they will ask a state judge to vacate his convictions and sentences based on DNA evidence that was not available 25 years ago.
The prosecutors say that they are not convinced that he is innocent of all the crimes he was imprisoned for, but that it is too late to retry him successfully. Lawyers for Mr. Diaz, now 67, say that his case is the best evidence yet that witnesses can make devastating mistakes, and that such testimony, however earnest and convincing, cannot be trusted.
Mr. Diaz's ordeal began on a summer day in 1977, when a teenage gas station attendant took his license plate number and called the police, saying he was the man who abducted and raped her a few nights earlier.
Lacking enough evidence to charge Mr. Diaz, who had no prior record, the police let him go. But similar attacks followed, and a cloud settled over Mr. Diaz, a Cuban immigrant whose wife usually picked him up from work at 11 p.m.
He was arrested in 1979 after another rape victim picked him out of a photo spread. Six more victims of rape or attempted rape then identified him in lineups, seemingly ending the mystery of the so-called Bird Road Rapist, named for the street in Miami where many of the assaults took place.
At his trial in 1980, Mr. Diaz wept. His restaurant co-workers swore that he was innocent. Jurors did not deliberate long before convicting Mr. Diaz, then 41, of seven attacks.
Barry Scheck, co-founder of the Innocence Project, a nonprofit group that fights for DNA exonerations, said most - about 120 of 160 exonerations since the advent of forensic DNA testing in 1989 - hinged on mistaken witness identification. But none involved as many mistaken witnesses as the Diaz case, he said.
"It's a landmark case for that reason," Mr. Scheck said. "These were crimes that upset people in the community, there was pressure to solve them, and there were, I think, unfortunate eyewitness techniques used that, in light of what we know now, were the kind that lead to error."
Mr. Scheck and Colin Starger, Mr. Diaz's lawyer at the Innocence Project, said they would use the case to push for new police techniques that a few states and localities, including New Jersey, North Carolina and Boston, have adopted to promising effect. One changes the way lineups are conducted, moving out suspects one at a time instead of all at once. The idea, researchers say, is to reduce the chance of falsely identifying someone who simply resembles the perpetrator more than anyone else in the lineup.
Another change involves putting an officer who knows nothing about the case in charge of a lineup or photo spread, so that the officer cannot influence the witness.
The Bird Road Rapist - if he was indeed one man, as the police originally believed - preyed on young women driving after midnight. The attacker would persuade them to pull over by flashing his headlights, force them into his car at gunpoint and make them perform oral sex while he drove away from the abduction spot. The assaults usually ended in rape.
Mr. Diaz was a problematic suspect from the start. He stood 5-foot-3 and weighed 134 pounds - much shorter and lighter than the assailant that most witnesses described. While most described their attacker as speaking vulgarity-laced English with a Spanish accent - and detectives said Mr. Diaz had answered questions in English - his restaurant co-workers swore that he barely spoke a word of the language. They also testified that he reeked of grease and onions at night after working long shifts behind the grill. But no victim recalled such a smell.
After Mr. Diaz was convicted, the judge said, "I've never seen a case where I was more convinced of a man's guilt."
But later, after Mr. Diaz had served more than a decade behind bars, two of the victims decided he was not their attacker after all. They recanted their testimony in 1993, after a private investigator raised doubts about Mr. Diaz's guilt and the television program "Unsolved Mysteries" broadcast an episode on the case.
One victim, whose identification of Mr. Diaz led to his arrest, said she had originally thought none of the men in the nine photographs she was shown resembled her attacker. She had asked to see more pictures, she said, but settled on Mr. Diaz after the police twice told her to keep looking at the first batch. He was the only one who remotely looked like the attacker, she said.
"They told me to look closer at the ones I had," she told a state prosecutor in 1993, adding that the police were watching her study the photos "almost like people holding their breath."
This victim said she grew more convinced that Mr. Diaz was her attacker when she "shook like a leaf" upon seeing him in a live lineup.
"All these girls couldn't be wrong, the detectives couldn't be wrong, it couldn't go this far," she recalled thinking.
After the recantations, Mr. Diaz's lawyers filed a motion in 1994 to vacate his convictions. In 2001, prosecutors agreed to vacate the convictions involving the two victims who recanted, and Mr. Diaz became eligible for parole. But it was denied.
Katherine Fernandez Rundle, the Miami-Dade state attorney, said the fact that DNA absolved Mr. Diaz of one crime did not necessarily absolve him of the rest. The state could attempt to retry him on the other cases, Ms. Rundle said, but some victims do not want to testify again, some cannot be found, and the evidence absolving him of one rape could be introduced by the defense.
"When you put all that together, the state cannot stand up in court and say we can retry this case," she said. "But, and this is so imperative, that's not to say he's innocent on all these other cases. Those victims believe in their identification and we believe in the witnesses, and the last thing we want to do is send a discouraging message to women out there who may be witnesses in rape cases."
Mr. Diaz's son Jose, who said he was 13 when the police took his father away in the middle of the night, read an article about DNA exonerations in 1998 and became determined to get his father tested.
Only two evidence samples remained: one from a victim who identified Mr. Diaz but later recanted, and another from a victim who was attacked around the same time but never brought charges. The testing found that one man committed both rapes, according to the Innocence Project, but he was not Mr. Diaz.
Virginia Snyder, the private investigator whose queries helped refocus attention on the case in the 1990's, said she believed a small gang of criminals, not one man, committed the rapes. Some of the victims originally described their attacker as a white man with no accent, and the height estimates ranged from 5-foot-6 to 6-foot-2.
In a prison interview on Tuesday, Mr. Diaz said that he had spent much of his 25 years in prison reading the Bible and that he hoped to get to know his grandchildren if he was released. His wife has remarried, and he wants to move in with his oldest son.
"I hope it's a reality and not an illusion," he said. "All this time has gone by fast to a certain extent. I've learned to live with it, but I've always wanted to be free."
Aug 3, 9:10 PM EDT
NYPD Reveals Details of London Attack
By TOM HAYS
Associated Press Writer
NEW YORK (AP) -- The suicide bombers cooked up their explosives using mundane items like hydrogen peroxide. They stored them in a fancy commercial refrigerator that was out of place in their grimy apartment. And cell phones were likely used to set the bombs off.
Those details from the July 7 London bombing emerged Wednesday at an unusually wide-ranging briefing given by the New York Police Department to city business leaders.
The briefing - based partly on information obtained by NYPD detectives who were dispatched to London to monitor the investigation - was part of a program designed to encourage more vigilance by private security at large hotels, Wall Street firms, storage facilities and other companies.
Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly warned the materials and methods used in the London attack were easily adaptable to New York.
"Initially it was thought that perhaps the materials were high-end military explosives that were smuggled, but it turns out not to be the case," Kelly said. "It's more like these terrorists went to a hardware store or some beauty supply store."
The NYPD officials said investigators believe the bombers used a peroxide-based explosive called HMDT, or hexamethylene triperoxide diamine. HMDT can be made using ordinary ingredients like hydrogen peroxide (hair bleach), citric acid (a common food preservative) and heat tablets (sometimes used by the military for cooking).
HMDT degrades at room temperature, so the bombers preserved it in way that offered an early warning sign, said Michael Sheehan, deputy commissioner of counterterrorism at the nation's largest police department.
"In the flophouse where this was built in Leeds, they had commercial grade refrigerators to keep the materials cool," Sheehan said, describing the setup as "an indicator of a problem."
Among the other details cited by NYPD officials:
- The bombers transported the explosives in beverage coolers tucked in the back of two cars to the outskirts of London.
- Investigators believe the three bombs that exploded in the subway were detonated by cell phones that had alarms set to 8:50 a.m.
- Similar "explosive compounds" were used in the attempted attack in London on July 21. However, the detonators were hand-activated, not timed.
Sheehan said the NYPD was troubled by information it had received about the bombers' links to "organizations," but he did not name any groups.
"We know those same types of organizations that they're affiliated with are very much present in New York City," he said. "That's something we're studying very, very carefully. ... This could happen here."
After the briefing, police spokesman Paul Browne said the department had clearance from British authorities to present the information about the July 7 attack, which killed 52 people.
The session at police headquarters in lower Manhattan was attended by officials from police departments and law enforcement agencies in Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and other jurisdictions. The officials were in the city discussing plans to beef up security along Amtrak's New York-Washington route.
Man shoots officers, self
Emily Bittner and Jack Gillum
The Arizona Republic
Aug. 4, 2005 12:00 AM
The moment Joseph Anthony Spano realized he would return to jail, authorities say, the 25-year-old drew a gun from his waistband and shot two law enforcement officers inside a Phoenix counseling center Wednesday afternoon.
The officers didn't have time to return fire. And neither was wearing a bulletproof vest.
Maricopa County Probation Officer Bill Harkins and Deputy U.S. Marshal Robert Morris were in critical but stable condition at John C. Lincoln Hospital-North Mountain on Wednesday evening, a hospital nursing supervisor said.
The shootings were just the beginning of an ordeal that included the kidnapping of a 23-month-old girl and ended in Spano's death. The toddler was unharmed. She was reunited with her mother Wednesday.
Harkins, who has worked for 16 years in the probation department, was shot in the neck and shoulder. He was in surgery late Wednesday, and doctors weren't sure about his prognosis.
"We're just keeping our fingers crossed that he comes out of it OK," said U.S. Marshal David Gonzales.
Morris, a 15-year-veteran of the marshal's office, was shot in the abdomen and the bullet went out his back. Doctors believe he will make a full recovery, Gonzales said.
"This tragedy speaks volumes about the danger of probation work and making arrests of probationers who violate terms of their probation," Maricopa County Chief Probation Officer Barbara Broderick said in statement.
Police say Spano, who was wanted for a probation violation, had a meeting with the Harkins and Morris about 1:30 p.m. at the Dynamic Living Counseling Inc. office at 15th Avenue and Bell Road, said Detective Tony Morales, a spokesman for the Phoenix Police Department.
The men planned to arrest Spano, a convicted armed robber, based on a warrant issued after Spano tested positive for amphetamines in November, according to Maricopa County Superior Court records.
Spano asked his friend Allen Dahl to give him a ride to the meeting, Morales said. Spano told Dahl that he would return in about 15 minutes. Dahl, who planned to wait, played with his girlfriend's toddler in his 2002 Mazda Protege.
Moments later, Spano ran back to the driver's side door, gun in hand. He pointed the weapon at Dahl and told his friend, "Get out, I need the car," Morales said.
Dahl refused and Spano grabbed his arm and told him: "Get out now. You'll have your baby and your car back in a little while."
Authorities issued an Amber Alert to find Spano and the toddler, Kylee Franklin.
An off-duty Phoenix police officer spotted the car near 10th Street and Coronado Road in central Phoenix and radioed dispatch before losing the car in traffic, police said.
Officers found the car nearby parked in a driveway. Officers approached the car, removed Kylee and took her to Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center for observation, Morales said.
A half-mile away, Spano turned his gun on himself behind an abandoned house in the 700 block of East Coronado Road. He was pronounced dead on arrival at Good Samaritan Hospital and Medical Center.
Police do not believe Spano had any connection to the home other than it was in his escape route.
Spano had a long history of problems, including drug abuse and several mental health problems. He suffered serious depression and anxiety and had attempted suicide before, court records stated.
The records said his father physically abused him and used methamphetamine and cocaine. During Spano's teen years, he admitted to abusing alcohol, smoking marijuana and using cocaine.
Spano was convicted in June 1997 on 12 counts of armed robbery, according to Superior Court records. He was sentenced to nine years in prison and seven years' probation. He was released from state prison in December 2003, after serving 7졐 years of his sentence.
it seems these government buerocrats beleive in reglious freedom as long as your not a mormon polygamist in colorado city. and that parents have the right to home school their children as long as they dont teach them something that offends a government bueorcrat.
Law enforcement officers wonder how parents
of more than 1,000 students who were ordered
into sect religious indoctrination home-schooling
by Jeffs five years ago can be persuaded to
return their children to public schools .....
"There has to be a requirement that those kids
go back to school. .....
Polygamist enclave changes emerge
New business, relaxed rules take hold amid board wrangling
Republic Flagstaff Bureau
Aug. 4, 2005 12:00 AM
COLORADO CITY - The change is coming slowly, like the tiny twigs of sand sagebrush breaking through the bright-red, high-desert soil.
Laura Timpson recently opened a beauty salon and tanning parlor in this frontier, polygamist town, where women traditionally have not cut their hair, and both men and women are clothed from wrist to ankle.
Colorado City's insular high school put a basketball team on the court for the first time last season, and it played nearby communities Fredonia and Littlefield, and Hurricane, Utah.
The next business planned for Colorado City's frontage along Arizona 389 is a bakery with pastries and fancy coffee. One local resident is even pondering opening a bed-and-breakfast with a polygamy theme.
But beyond these signs, there is a more long-lasting move toward changing the culture in Colorado City and neighboring Hildale, Utah, the largest polygamist community in the country: A hearing is scheduled today in Salt Lake City before Utah District Judge Denise Lindberg to pick a new board to be in charge of virtually all the financial decisions regarding the land, homes and businesses of the two towns.
About 25 people have been nominated for the communal United Effort Plan board, which controls most assets in the two towns. But more than 200 pages of objections in court records have been filed against virtually all the nominees, and officials in both states will seek to delay appointment of the new board.
While change to the towns' way of life is pursued in court, the search continues for the fugitive leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
Warren Jeffs, 49, has been on the run since June from state and federal officers after being indicted on sexual-misconduct charges for marrying an underage girl to a polygamist patriarch. Eight local men surrendered to authorities last month after being indicted on sexual-misconduct charges involving underage girls.
Authorities want to keep Jeffs away and out of contact with residents of the two towns, where an estimated three-quarters of the FLDS members remain loyal to him. The FLDS is not affiliated with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Joseph Allred, Colorado City's town clerk and a member of the FLDS, declined to be interviewed about the town's future, saying he could talk only about town-management issues.
Rod Parker, a Salt Lake City attorney who formerly represented the sect, did not return telephone calls. No other current FLDS members would agree to be interviewed about the sect's future.
Hope and concern
A new board, new businesses, relaxed rules and the hunt for Jeffs are encouraging, according to law enforcement officers and some residents and former residents.
But they say they still are concerned about what will happen to the 6,000 people remaining in the two towns as they make a hoped-for leap from frontier multiple-marriage dogma into the modern world.
Even with the moves in court, there are some indications that a large-scale exodus from the two towns could be happening, primarily to nearly 3 square miles of land the sect bought near Eldorado, Texas, and where a four-story temple has been built.
Mohave County School Superintendent Mike File said he believes at least half of the children have been taken out of Colorado City.
"There's been a major shakedown with a lot of people sacking up and running," said Deloy Bateman, a Colorado City schoolteacher.
Adding to the evidence of wholesale departures, Mohave County investigator Gary Engels said, a barn where potatoes were processed had its equipment disassembled and moved out in May. He does not know where it was taken.
A dairy on adjoining property has only one-third to one-half of the cattle it had a year ago, he said. But again, he does not know where the cattle went.
South of Arizona 389, on the way to the Colorado City airport, is the site of a former longtime chicken plant, which Engels said he believes was moved to Texas last year.
Services shut down
There are other signs that there is less interest on the part of the sect in keeping the towns vital, at least as they have been in the past.
For example, the Twin City power plant in Colorado City, citing the cost of fuel and reportedly $20 million in debt, closed on July 1.
"A main line between Hurricane and St. George (both in Utah) went down last winter for three or four days, and our plant was the backup," Allred said. "Now, we don't have that anymore."
Only about half of a nearby 200-acre hay field is in production because of irrigation equipment that broke down, Engels said.
In neighboring Hildale, the Town Hall had open doors on three business days in late June but no one manning work stations, an indication that the town is not operating at full speed.
Meanwhile, Jeffs, who has not been seen publicly for more than two years, is believed by authorities to have quickly left the FLDS' Texas land after getting word of the indictment. He was identified as having been in Canada in mid-June.
If Jeffs is gone for good, there is no certainty whether someone could or would take his place or who that would be.
Names mentioned as possible successors include Sam Barlow, a former town marshal; Winston Blackmore, leader of the FLDS sect in Bountiful, British Columbia; and William Timpson, who was selected as the local bishop by Jeffs after the death of longtime bishop Fred Jessop earlier this year.
Many worry that a new polygamy prophet will take charge and the public clamor will be to retain the UEP. Jeffs and four of his most devout followers were stripped from the UEP board of trustees in June.
Another potential issue is that if the trust is eventually broken up and the assets divided among sect members, how will the new stakeholders be determined?
And there is concern about how a new board that includes escaped polygamist wives, current polygamists, men forced out of town by those polygamists and outsiders with a vested interest in the towns, will be able to agree on the towns' futures.
Lori Chatwin, a longtime Colorado City resident, said a new board needs to act slowly.
"If (board members) give them deeds to their homes too quickly, they will sell, take the money and go running right back to Warren," she said. "I mean, this is the third or fourth generation of people who haven't owned anything, and they need to be educated.
"(Board members) also need to put stipulations on what they (residents) can and can't do with the property, at least for now. This is a process that might take 10 to 15 years."
Andrea Esquer, a spokeswoman for Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard, said Wednesday that both Goddard and the office of Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff agree that composition of the board is important.
"We think it would behoove the court to take its time and to look more into the background of each nominee so we can understand better who the applicants are and reach some kind of consensus," Esquer said.
Young peoples' future
But the biggest problem of all may be the future of the towns' young people.
Law enforcement officers wonder how parents of more than 1,000 students who were ordered into sect religious indoctrination home-schooling by Jeffs five years ago can be persuaded to return their children to public schools or legitimate alternatives.
Bateman, the Colorado City teacher, said that all the children who have been home-schooled have learned only to read and write and memorize Scripture.
"There has to be a requirement that those kids go back to school. If the kids come home with information, the parents will change, also," Bateman said
Ross Chatwin, Lori Chatwin's husband who had a falling out with Jeffs and was ordered to leave his home, said the school is the key to normalizing the society, and the basketball team was a good start.
"They are going to have to put in social activities, things like dances, at school where boys and girls can have normal relations," Chatwin said. "Most of the young people don't even know why they are alive now. Warren has impressed on the boys and girls that they can't even look at each other because the girls were getting ready for celestial marriage."
Reach the reporter at email@example.com or (602)444-8057.
Pastor fired, accused of theft of church
By Amanda Lee Myers, Tribune
August 4, 2005
The pastor of a Scottsdale church has been fired amid a police investigation and allegations that he stole at least $60,000 of his congregation’s money over the past 18 months.
Patrick Shetler was fired from Glass and Garden Community Church, 8620 E. McDonald Drive, after members of the church’s board of directors discovered financial discrepancies, police said.
"Thousands of dollars are missing," said board member Sally Tourney. "It’s awful."
After starting work at the church in January, Tourney grew concerned about numerous calls by collection agents who said credit card accounts under the church’s name were going unpaid, she said.
In June, police said, Tourney began investigating the problem herself and soon found out that Shetler — who became pastor in 1999 — had opened the accounts.
Tourney then began looking into a joint Bank One account between Shetler and the church and discovered he had exceeded his personal budget by $43,081 in 2004 and by $17,398 so far this year, the police report states.
Tourney said church members are still unsure just how much is missing.
Shetler admitted to board members that he exceeded his allotted budget, but said he had only done so by $20,000, police said.
At Shetler’s south Scottsdale apartment on Wednesday, a woman inside declined to open the door to a reporter, instead shouting, "We’re not interested. No comment."
Glass and Garden is a member of the Reformed Church in America — a network of hundreds of churches in the United States and Canada. The organization has set up a committee to investigate Shetler and met with him Friday.
The committee is working with Shetler and the church to "help them through the process," said Rev. Richard Koerselman of Gilbert’s New Hope Community Church, also a member of Reformed Church in America.
"We are trying to support the church and help him through this time and help him face whatever he has to face," he said.
Koerselman, who will take part in the investigation, described Shetler as "your humble servant kind of guy" and said the committee is referring to the incident as a "mismanagement of funds."
Shetler, a married father of two, moved to Scottsdale from Grant, Mich., where he also was a pastor.
Some of those who attended a music practice at the church Wednesday said the allegations were troubling.
"We’re very, very shocked and very disappointed," said Joe Hegstad of Scottsdale.
"If it’s all true, it’s really the pits," said Larry Brasen, a Scottsdale musician who plays at the church. "There was never a hint of anything like this. I’m just hoping we can get all our money back."
Contact Amanda Lee Myers by telephone at (480) 970-2330.
hmmmm... tempe mayor hallman admits that the city of tempe screwed over these latino workers, but despite that mayor hugh hallman is trying to keep the lation workers from getting the money they won in the law suit for the discrminination. tempe mayor hugh hallman sounds like a crook to me
Memo admits Tempe discriminated
By Dennis Welch, Tribune
August 4, 2005
A confidential memo reveals that Tempe Mayor Hugh Hallman admitted the city discriminated against a group of Hispanic workers and failed to stop the abuse.
A week after a federal jury awarded nine Hispanic men $2.4 million in a discrimination suit, Hallman had written and planned to read an apology during a July 7 council meeting.
But the city’s insurance company, Royal & SunAlliance, barred the reading until the firm exhausted all its legal options.
The statement would have been the first public apology on behalf of the city since allegations of racism and discrimination surfaced in the city’s Public Works Department in the late 1990s.
"We are deeply sorry for the past acts, and past failures to take action, that subjected these members of our City work force to improper treatment," Hallman stated in the unreleased apology obtained by the Tribune. "We cannot change the past or ease the unfair and discriminatory treatment that they were subjected to."
Hallman went on to write that the city had made improvements and would continue to ensure that everyone who worked for the city would be treated fairly.
"We must also note, in that spirit of fairness, as we hope each of the nine workers will, that while the jury rightly recognized the problems of the past it also acknowledged that the city organization has made exceptional strides to assure a workplace that is positive, constructive, respectful and equitable."
Hallman was unavailable for comment.
City Manager Will Manley, who was one of the staff members to receive a copy of the draft apology, said the statement was never endorsed or discussed by the City Council.
However, for some members of Tempe’s Hispanic community, the apology, read or not, would have been too late to carry any meaning.
"We’ve been waiting for an apology for six years and they waited for the court decision," said Ed Valenzuela, a Tempe activist.
Valenzuela is the former district director of the U.S. Equal Employment and Opportunity Commission in Phoenix and chairman of the Tempe Hispanic Council.
Stephen Montoya, the attorney who represented nine Hispanic workers, said he agreed with Hallman’s draft apology, but said the mayor should have ignored the insurance company and read the statement.
"He was elected to demonstrate leadership, not to listen to his lawyers," he said.
On July 21, Royal & SunAlliance filed three separate motions asking a federal
judge to either order a new trial or overturn the verdict.
Cliff Mattice, an attorney for the city, said they do not expect any decision on the motions until late August.
Contact Dennis Welch by email, or phone (480) 898-6573
Video: al-Qaida vows more attacks vs. west
August 4, 2005
CAIRO, Egypt - Al-Qaida's No. 2 Ayman al-Zawahri threatened more destruction in London, saying in a videotape broadcast Thursday that British Prime Minister Tony Blair would be to blame.
Al-Zawahri also threatened the United States with tens of thousands of military dead if it does not withdraw its troops from Iraq immediately.
The tape, aired on the pan-Arab satellite channel Al-Jazeera, was delivered exactly one month after the July 7 bombings in London that killed 56 people, including four suicide attackers. In the excerpts aired by Al-Jazeera, al-Zawahri did not directly claim that al-Qaida carried out the July 7 or July 21 attacks, instead saying they stemmed from Blair's decision to deploy troops in Iraq.
"Blair has brought to you destruction in central London, and he will bring more of that, God willing," al-Zawahri said in the broadcast excerpts.
In London, Blair's Downing Street office declined to comment on the broadcast.
Al-Zawahri, an Egyptian doctor who merged his militant faction with that of al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan in the late 1990s, spoke with a Kalashnikov rifle propped up behind his right shoulder against a plain background.
He has been in hiding since the United States invaded Afghanistan in late 2001. It was at least the sixth videotape or audiotape released by al-Zawahri since the Sept. 11 attacks blamed on al-Qaida.
In June, Al-Jazeera broadcast a videotape of al-Zawahri disparaging the U.S. concept of reform in the Middle East and saying armed jihad was the only way to bring change in the Arab world.
The Saudi-born bin Laden last appeared in a video in October.
The latest videotape showed al-Zawahri positioned in front of a woven cloth that moved with the wind and showed the sunlight, indicating it appeared to be made outdoors. He was wearing a white robe and a black turban and emphatically wagged his finger at the camera while speaking.
An Al-Jazeera editor said he was not authorized to say how the Qatar-based channel received the tape.
In the excerpts, al-Zawahri warned the United States it could expect significantly more casualties from its military campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"As for you, the Americans, what you have seen in New York and Washington, what losses that you see in Afghanistan and Iraq, despite the media blackout, is merely the losses of the initial clashes," he said.
"If you go on with the same policy of aggression against Muslims, you will see, with God's will, what will make you forget the horrible things in Vietnam and Afghanistan."
He said the Bush administration was repeating the "same lies they said in Vietnam .. .that they are bringing freedom."
"There is no way out of Iraq without immediate withdrawal, and any delay on this means only more dead, more losses," he said. "If you don't leave today, certainly you will leave tomorrow, and after tens of thousands of dead, and double that figure in disabled and wounded."
He suggested there would be more attacks against other Western nations who have contributed troops to the U.S.-led multinational force in Iraq. He said those nations had ignored a three-month "truce" that bin Laden offered for European nations in April 2004 to give them time to withdraw their troops from Iraq.
"Hasn't Sheik Osama bin Laden told you that you will not dream of security before there is security in Palestine and before all the infidel armies withdraw from the land of Muhammad?" al-Zawahri said.
"Instead (of accepting the truce), you spilled blood like rivers in our countries and we exploded the volcanoes of wrath in your countries."
He did not name any countries apart from Britain, but he appeared to be referring to the terror attacks in Madrid, Spain, last year that were linked to al-Qaida. Those train bombings killed 191 people.
"Our message is clear: you will not be safe until you withdraw from our land, stop stealing our oil and wealth and stop supporting the corrupt rulers," al-Zawahri said.
Aug 4, 12:17 AM EDT
Philly archdiocese latest to escape charges in sex abuse scandal
By MARYCLAIRE DALE
Associated Press Writer
PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- After hearing from hundreds of witnesses, a grand jury reportedly will conclude that no criminal charges can be brought against the Philadelphia Archdiocese for its supervision of Roman Catholic priests who sexually abused children.
The grand jury's report documents assaults on children by more than 50 priests, but state laws, including legal time limits, prevent prosecutors from filing charges, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Wednesday.
"Unfortunately, the message the church receives by no indictments is that they're above the law," said nurse Diane Freedman Drinker, 45, of Conshohocken, who told the panel she was sexually assaulted by a Philadelphia-area priest from the age of 10 until she was 16.
At least 11 grand juries nationwide have completed investigations of dioceses in the last three years, but none resulted in criminal charges against bishops concerning their management of priest-abuse cases. They include panels in Los Angeles, Boston and Arizona.
The more-than-500-page report by Philadelphia prosecutors, now in the hands of a Common Pleas judge overseeing the secret probe, harshly criticized church leaders for shielding abusers, the Inquirer reported, citing confidential sources. The report is expected to be made public next month.
Former Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, who led the archdiocese from 1988 to 2003, was among those who testified.
Victim advocates, while disappointed, say the grand jury probes have focused attention on the clergy abuse problem and have prompted several states to extend time limits for the filing of sexual assault charges.
"I think they accomplished a tremendous amount," said the Rev. Thomas Doyle, a church law expert who served as a consultant to several grand juries. "They clearly brought out the truth about the extent of sex abuse by the clergy and about the extensive negligence of the leadership to handle these cases properly."
In the Philadelphia area, church officials have said more than 40 priests were credibly accused of sexual assaults over the last half-century. The grand jury reportedly found that Philadelphia archdiocese officials often made only a cursory inquiry into complaints by children or parents and that church officials did not contact police.
An attorney for the archdiocese, C. Clark Hodgson Jr., declined comment Wednesday, as did archdiocesan spokeswoman Donna Farrell. A spokeswoman for Philadelphia District Attorney Lynne Abraham also declined comment, citing grand jury secrecy.
The criminal investigation did lead to the arrest of the Rev. James J. Behan, an Oblate priest who pleaded guilty this year to repeatedly assaulting a 15-year-old boy from 1978 to 1980. He left the state soon afterward, which stopped the clock on the statute of limitations. Behan is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 9.
Lawyer Jay Abramowitz represents about 60 people filing civil actions over alleged clergy abuse, some of whom testified before the Philadelphia grand jury.
"There was a great deal of evidence presented to the grand jury," he said. "It's just a question of the statute of limitations. It's the only hurdle that could have prevented the grand jury from indicting. I don't think anybody disputes it. I don't think the church disputes that."
Abraham convened the grand jury investigation in April 2002 amid a nationwide scandal following the disclosure of widespread abuse in the Catholic Church in Boston.
Drinker and two of her cousins told the archdiocese in 1991 that they had been assaulted by a priest who was a family friend, but the priest remained active for another decade, she said. Numerous other people, including two of her cousins, have also accused him of abuse, she said.
"They had a thick file on him. You just wonder if they had done something back when the original complaints came in, how many people could have been saved," Drinker said.
AP religion writer Rachel Zoll in New York contributed to this report.
of course they are not going to charge her with MURDER or anything like that!!! after all it is not really murder if you kill a brown skinned muslim terrorist. well thats not my view on how should be run. it is the view of the us military.
Aug 4, 12:37 PM EDT
GI Pleads Guilty to Mistreating Detainee
By ALICIA CALDWELL
Associated Press Writer
FORT BLISS, Texas (AP) -- A military intelligence soldier pleaded guilty Thursday to charges that she mistreated a detainee in Afghanistan who later died.
Sgt. Selena M. Salcedo pleaded guilty to dereliction of duty and assault, two of four charges that she faced. Military prosecutors dropped the other two related charges against her as part of the plea agreement.
Salcedo admitted that she mistreated a man called Dilawar, whom the military was holding as a prisoner at Bagram Air Field in Afghanistan. She faces up to a year in prison, a bad conduct discharge, loss of a year's pay, and a reduction in rank to private. Sentencing was to begin later Thursday.
Salcedo said that while questioning Dilawar on Dec. 8, 2002, she kicked him, grabbed his head and forced him against a wall several times.
Dilawar was apparently also beaten by others, some of whom are also facing charges in his death that same month. Pfc. Willie V. Brand, a member of the Cincinnati-based U.S. Army Reserve 377th Military Police Company, was accused of beating to death over a five-day period. An autopsy showed that Dilawar's legs were so damaged that amputation would have been necessary had he survived.
At Thursday's hearing, Salcedo matter-of-factly told Lt. Col. Mark Sposato, the military judge, that she knew what she was doing was illegal but became frustrated when he avoided her questions and failed to pay attention to her.
"I got frustrated so I grabbed the side of his face to include his ears" and pushed him against a wall, Salcedo said.
She described how she repeatedly forced Dilawar to sit against the wall as though he were in a chair. She said she and another military intelligence soldier, Spc. Glendale C. Walls, both forced Dilawar against the wall as he continued the conversation with a translator.
Salcedo said Dilawar complained of knee pain, but she believed it was a tactic to avoid further questioning. She said he made several facial expressions during the interrogation and spoke to the translator in Pashtun in a "whiny voice."
Report: U.S. Secretly Held Two Prisoners
By MICHELLE FAUL
Associated Press Writer
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) -- Two Yemeni men say they were held in solitary confinement in secret, underground U.S. detention facilities in an unknown country and interrogated by masked men for more than 18 months without being charged or allowed any contact with the outside world, Amnesty International charged Wednesday.
Amnesty and human rights lawyers argued that the report added to long-standing claims that the United States has held "secret detainees" in its war on terror.
"We fear that what we have heard from these two men is just one small part of the much broader picture of U.S. secret detentions around the world," Sharon Critoph, a researcher at Amnesty International who interviewed the men in Yemen, told The Associated Press by telephone.
Navy Lt. Commander Flex Plexico, noting that it was difficult to respond to a report he hasn't seen said, "We have said many times that the Department of Defense does not engage in the practice of renditions" - the transfer of terror suspects to third countries without court approval.
Plexico, a spokesman for the department, said it was important to note that training manuals of al Qaida terrorist network "emphasize the tactic of making false abuse allegations."
U.S. officials have denied allegations of secret detention facilities, saying they hold terror suspects only at the U.S. Naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and in Iraq and Afghanistan.
In June, U.S. officials denied a suggestion from the U.N.'s special expert on torture, Manfred Nowak, that some undeclared holding areas could include American ships cruising international waters. Others have suggested "high-value" detainees could be held secretly in Diego Garcia, a British-held island in the Indian Ocean that the United States rents as a strategic military base.
Lawyers who represent detainees at Guantanamo have long believed that the CIA or other U.S. government agencies have used clandestine jails for terror suspects.
"The fact that there are underground CIA facilities somewhere where people are being tortured has been known for a while," Michael Ratner of the U.S. Center for Constitutional Rights in New York City told the AP in a telephone interview.
In the report released in Washington, Amnesty said it interviewed Salah Nasser Salim Ali and Muhammad Faraj Ahmed Bashmilah in a jail in Yemen in late June. The group also spoke to a Yemeni government official who said the men were being held in that country only because it was a condition of their release from U.S. custody.
Ali told the rights group that he was originally detained in Indonesia in August 2003 and then flown several days later to Jordan; Bashmilah said he was detained in Jordan in October 2003 while on a trip to visit his mother.
Both men claimed they were tortured by Jordanian intelligence agents for four days and then flown to what they believe were underground jails in an unknown location.
Once there, they were held in solitary confinement for more than 18 months, interrogated daily by U.S. guards and blared Western music all day and night. No charges were ever filed against them, they said.
The men said their first jail was underground, surrounded by high walls and that it took more than 4 hours to fly there from Jordan. After six to eight months they were transferred to a modern prison run by U.S. officials a three-hour plane journey away that also appeared to be underground.
free speach is good for government. but sadly it looks like religion doesnt want to allow it.
Bishop's ban targets Napolitano
Catholic move mutes speeches at churches
The Arizona Republic
Aug. 5, 2005 12:00 AM
Gov. Janet Napolitano and other politicians who support issues like abortion and gay rights have been banned from speaking at Catholic churches in the Phoenix Diocese.
So far, Napolitano has been the only one affected by the edict from Phoenix Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted. She was forbidden to speak last year at a Catholic church in Scottsdale at an event opposing Proposition 200, a ballot measure that restricted the rights of undocumented immigrants. The event was moved to another site.
The issue surfaced again last week when some speakers at a memorial service for homeless people who died in the July heat wave bowed out because they thought they, too, were banned.
Mary Jo West, a church spokeswoman, said it was all a misunderstanding. She said the policy applies only to politicians and other public figures.
Olmsted, in a letter to pastors in December, said churches may not invite to speak any politician or other public figure who disagrees with basic church teaching on abortion, gay marriage or other issues.
An invitation "would provide them with a platform which would suggest support for their actions," he wrote.
Napolitano, a Methodist, said she was not aware of the ban but had heard about the letter.
Olmsted's decision followed a policy passed last year by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. He is among a number of Catholic bishops nationwide who have chosen to take a strict interpretation of the June 2004 statement called "Catholics in Political Life." It condemns people who don't follow Catholic teaching but leaves decisions about public speaking and Communion to individual bishops.
The statement grew out of the 2004 presidential campaign debate over whether Sen. John Kerry or other politicians who support abortion rights should be allowed to receive communion.
Olmsted, in his letter, said such individuals would not be welcome even if they are speaking on an unrelated matter - even one on which they agree with church leaders.
Other bishops, including Bishop Gerald Kicanas of Tucson, have taken a softer approach. Kicanas said he has not established a blanket policy for the Diocese of Tucson.
In fact, Napolitano was allowed to speak in a Tucson Catholic church in April for the 15th anniversary of the Pima County Interfaith Council, Tucson church spokesman Fred Allison said.
Ron Johnson, lobbyist for Arizona's Catholic bishops, said it is rare for politicians of any kind to speak at Catholic churches. The Phoenix Diocese even discouraged candidate forums during the 2004 campaign.
The situation plays out more often at Catholic colleges and universities, where outside speakers are frequently invited to lecture in classrooms and events.
Last October, Catholic University in Washington, D.C., began banning any speaker who had advocated in favor of abortion rights. After a visit by actor Stanley Tucci was canceled because of his support for abortion rights, faculty members protested, saying a university should expose students to a wide range of viewpoints, even those that differ with the church.
The Cardinal Newman Society, an organization started by conservative Catholics, denounced 16 Catholic universities last spring for granting honorary degrees or inviting commencement speakers who they deemed out of line with church teachings.
Among the speakers it singled out were radio commentator Paul Harvey and Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer. "The issue is scandal," said Patrick J. Reilly, president and chief executive officer of the society. "The problem arises when a person publicly acts upon a position, leading others away from the faith."
Frances Kissling, who heads Catholics for a Free Choice, said the ban represents a change from the past, when politicians frequented church dinners and the like.
She said the church risks isolating itself politically and religiously if it continues to restrict who may address Catholics at church facilities.
Arizona Rep. Collette Rosati, a Catholic and a Republican, said she supports the bishop.
"You can't give a bully pulpit to politicians who don't support church teaching," she said.
But her colleague, Rep. Steve Gallardo, a Democrat who describes himself as a "devout Catholic," had a different point of view.
"I would hope we would welcome all ideas, different viewpoints, so we could have an open dialogue on all the issues," he said.
Meanwhile, Napolitano often addresses faith groups in the course of her work.
She spoke in June at the annual convention of the United Methodist Church's Desert Southwest Annual Conference. She challenged churches to help find foster homes for children, housing for the homeless and jobs for ex-convicts.
Abortion rights, gay marriage and other hot button issues were not mentioned.
Reach the reporter at mike.clancy@arizonarepublic .com or (602) 444-8550.
those Guatemalan babes really make Detention officers hot :)
Detention officer faces sex charges
Accused of kidnapping, improperly touching 16-year-old detainee
The Arizona Republic
Aug. 4, 2005 06:58 PM
A 40-year-old detention officer with the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement has been arrested on charges of kidnapping and sexual assault involving a 16-year-old detainee.
Kevin Richard Carlisle, who has worked for the agency for 15 years, is on paid administrative leave.
A 16-year-old Guatemalan girl, who entered the United States illegally, told Phoenix police officers that Carlisle detained her on July 14 outside a home in the 4200 block of North Ninth Street, said Sgt. Lauri Williams, a spokeswoman for the Phoenix Police Department.
Carlisle went to the house looking for another fugitive, Williams said. The girl told police that Carlisle handcuffed her and put her in the back seat of a vehicle, where he touched her inappropriately, according to Maricopa County Superior Court documents.
He then took the girl to the immigration and customs facility in the 2000 block of North Central Avenue. Carlisle escorted the girl to an isolated room, where a video camera captured him touching her inappropriately, the document stated.
Carlisle told detectives that he put his fingers along her waistband to search her, but he denied sexually assaulting the girl.
Carlisle was arrested on July 29. He was released on $15,000 bond.
Russell Ahr, a spokesman for the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said the agency takes the allegations seriously and is cooperating with Phoenix police. He declined to describe routine detainee search procedures because of the ongoing investigation.
The accusations against Carlisle don't follow other law enforcement agencies' search procedures, Williams said.
"It certainly wouldn't fall into any policy of any law enforcement agency I know," Williams said. "Strip searches have to be done by the same sex. Any invasive searches have to be done by medical doctors."
Pentagon agrees to issue photos of coffins of war dead
New York Times
Aug. 5, 2005 12:00 AM
WASHINGTON - Under the terms of a legal settlement announced on Thursday, the Pentagon will make available "as expeditiously as possible" some photographs of the coffins of service members killed in Iraq. The agreement runs counter to a long-standing Pentagon policy that bars the public release of such photographs. But in response to requests under the Freedom of Information Act, the Pentagon has already released hundreds of such photographs this year, and it agreed under the settlement to continue to do so.
The agreement responded to a Freedom of Information Act suit filed in October in U.S. District Court here that sought all photographs and video images that showed coffins or items that held the remains of American military personnel at Dover Air Force Base, Del., beginning in February 2003.
The Pentagon has strictly enforced a policy barring news photographs showing the coffins. That policy has been in place since the Persian Gulf War in 1991.
Ralph Begleiter, a journalism professor at the University of Delaware who was a lead plaintiff in the current suit, said the Pentagon's agreement to release the photographs represented a "significant victory."
how many times do i have to say it? goodbye vietnam hello iraq!
August GI toll rises to 18
Aug. 5, 2005 12:00 AM
BAGHDAD - The U.S. military said Thursday that four more American troops were killed Wednesday, a Marine in the central city of Ramadi and three soldiers targeted by a car bombing in southwest Baghdad.
Their deaths, along with those of 14 Marines in western Iraq announced earlier, brought Wednesday's toll for U.S. forces to 18.
The start of August has been among the bloodiest stretches for American troops since the 2003 invasion of Iraq, and non-active duty service members have borne the brunt. The 20 Marines killed in two separate incidents this week were reservists, and the soldiers killed Wednesday were from the Georgia National Guard.
About 30 percent of the 138,000 U.S. troops in Iraq are from the National Guard and Reserves.
The news of more U.S. fatalities came on a day in which the Iraqi prime minister announced a new security plan and said Iraqi forces were making the country safer, while the top U.S. military spokesman in Iraq told reporters that data showed the tempo of insurgent attacks was decreasing.
"The security situation is improving, especially Iraqi security forces with regard to both quality and quantity," said Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari, who outlined a 12-point security program for Iraq Thursday afternoon.
Under the new plan, four separate intelligence services will be consolidated into one central operation, and responsibility over security of the country's infrastructure - such as oil pipelines and the power grid - will be put in the hands of Deputy Prime Minister Ahmed Chalabi.
Al-Jaafari provided few other details of the plan, beyond general pledges, for example, to secure Iraq's borders and improve relations with its neighbors.
At a later news conference, Air Force Brig. Gen. Donald Alston, the military spokesman, said, "The numbers that we see indicate that (insurgents) can't generate the same tempo" of attacks as in previous months. The 13 car bombs detonated across Iraq last week represented the fewest since April, Alston said, although he declined to provide data for other forms of insurgent attacks such as roadside bombs.
"This is not an expanding insurgency," Alston added. "What we are seeing is probably the opposite."
Insurgent tactics have gotten more effective and sophisticated, Alston acknowledged, saying they have modified their attacks to counteract improvements in the armor applied to U.S. vehicles, using larger and more lethal forms of explosives. "What we are seeing is an adaptive enemy," he said.
In Baghdad, the three soldiers killed Wednesday night were from the 48th Brigade of the Georgia National Guard, which arrived in Iraq in May. 2nd Lt. Selena Owens, a spokeswoman with the unit, said another soldier was seriously wounded.
The 48th Brigade has lost 11 members in insurgent attacks in less than two weeks and another in a non-combat-related incident. On Thursday evening, Owens said, soldiers held a memorial service for four soldiers killed by a roadside bomb Saturday.
Handcuffing of 5-year-old called 'error'
Aug. 5, 2005 12:00 AM
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Police officers committed an error of judgment when they handcuffed an unruly kindergartner at school in March but did not violate policy, the department's chief said Thursday.
Police Chief Chuck Harmon said the two officers who handcuffed the 5-year-old girl were reprimanded for minor errors in handling the situation, which gained worldwide attention when a videotape of the confrontation was released.
But Harmon said the officers were not punished for shackling the child, who had torn up a classroom and hit an assistant principal before the officers arrived.
Still, Harmon said, the officers should have done more investigation, explored ways to defuse the situation and allowed school officials to take the lead in handling it.
"This child needed some intervention, but I don't think it was by law enforcement," Harmon said, calling the handcuffing "premature."
A video camera captured images of the girl tearing papers off a bulletin board, climbing on a table and punching the assistant principal before police were called.
Then the tape shows the child appearing to calm down before officers approach, pin her arms behind her back and put on handcuffs as she screamed, "No!" and began to cry.
The girl was put into the back of a police car and had her feet restrained after she tried to kick out the window. She was released later without charges.
The girl's mother, Inga Akins, sold her story exclusively to a tabloid TV show, and her attorneys have notified the city that she plans to sue. Harmon said the incident prompted a policy change that will prohibit handcuffing children under8 without a supervising officer being called to the scene. But officers need to retain the option of handcuffing children in "extreme situations," such as when a weapon is involved, he said.
dont piss off the church elders :)
Mormons kick out Australian author
Aug. 5, 2005 12:00 AM
SALT LAKE CITY - An Australian author who wrote that DNA evidence fails to support the ancestral claims outlined in the Book of Mormon has been excommunicated by the Church of Jesus of Christ of Latter-day Saints.
After a three-hour disciplinary council meeting on Sunday in Australia, author Simon Southerton was informed that his relationship with his religion of 30 years would be officially severed, the writer said in an e-mail to the Associated Press.
Southerton said he was excommunicated for "having an inappropriate relationship with a woman." He doesn't deny the relationship, which occurred two years ago while he was separated from his wife. The Southertons have since reconciled, and Jane Southerton testified in behalf of her husband.
Southerton believes church concerns about his writing are the underlying reason for the excommunication.
He said he refused to discuss his personal life with church leaders on Sunday, instead asking them why he was not answering to charges of apostasy for having widely published on the Internet and in his book his doubts about the church and his beliefs about DNA science.
Church leaders responded, Southerton wrote, by saying that they were not avoiding the "issue of apostasy and that the charge they were investigating was more important."
Southerton's book, published in 2004, outlines how existing DNA data for American Indians do not support the Mormon beliefs that the continent's earliest inhabitants were descendants of Israelite patriarch Lehi.
this proves that Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Michael Jones is just as corrupt as Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Arizona's public records law ARS 39-121.01 says "The custodian of such records shall promptly furnish such copies, printouts or photographs". Sheriff Joes thugs didnt even give the New Times the data until four months after the lawsuit was filed according to this article.
Paper loses suit against sheriff
Judge: New Times’ open records claims ‘unsupported’
By GARY GRADO TRIBUNE
A judge on Wednesday ruled in favor of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office in a lawsuit brought by a Valley newspaper claiming the agency broke open records laws.
County Superior Court Judge Michael Jones rejected the claims of Phoenix New Times as "unsupported by anything other than argument and histrionics."
"The judge really hammered them," said Jack MacIntyre, the sheriff’s intergovernmental liaison.
Jones also ordered the New Times, which is published weekly, to pay the county the cost of defending the suit , not including attorney’s fees.
The sheriff’s office did not have a cost figure on Thursday. Rick Barrs, New Times editor, said the paper was considering an appeal.
The New Times asserted that Sheriff Joe Arpaio failed to honor 10 requests for records filed with his office under the Arizona Public Records Law.
Arpaio withheld the records to pay the newspaper back for an article critical of him, the New Times alleged.
Jones found that Arpaio produced all the requested records in existence, prepared records that didn’t exist before and made staff available to explain why certain requested records didn’t exist. He also found that the copying fees that the New Times was charged were reasonable.
Barrs said it took the sheriff’s office four months to even respond to its request after the lawsuit was filed, leaving him to wonder if Jones is saying government agencies now have that much time to respond.
CONTACT WRITER: (602) 258-1746 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Date: Fri, 5 Aug 2005 10:39:53 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: [lpaz-discuss] my letter to the Village Voice
To the editor,
Doug Strott of Indianapolis may be “a libertarian by party” in the
sense that he is identified as such on the voter rolls, but he is assuredly no libertarian (Letters, August 2). Real libertarians poke a finger in the eye of the oppressor; they do not lick his jackboot, as Mr. Strott would have us do.
All New Yorkers need to decide right now whether we are sheep or
whether we are free men and women. We can start by refusing to consent to these unconstitutional searches, which are more fitting for a police state than a country that is allegedly trying to “defend freedom.” Not only are the bag searches a gross infringement of our Fourth Amendment rights, but they will not make the slightest difference in stopping terrorist attacks. All they accomplish is to make stupid people _feel_ safer, which is hardly the proper function of the police.
Chair, Manhattan Libertarian Party
Libertarian candidate for NYC Public Advocate
August 5, 2005 latimes.com
The myths of Hiroshima
By Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin, KAI BIRD and MARTIN J. SHERWIN are coauthors of "American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer," published earlier this year by Knopf.
SIXTY YEARS ago tomorrow, an atomic bomb was dropped without warning on the center of the Japanese city of Hiroshima. One hundred and forty thousand people were killed, more than 95% of them women and children and other noncombatants. At least half of the victims died of radiation poisoning over the next few months. Three days after Hiroshima was obliterated, the city of Nagasaki suffered a similar fate.
The magnitude of death was enormous, but on Aug. 14, 1945 — just five days after the Nagasaki bombing — Radio Tokyo announced that the Japanese emperor had accepted the U.S. terms for surrender. To many Americans at the time, and still for many today, it seemed clear that the bomb had ended the war, even "saving" a million lives that might have been lost if the U.S. had been required to invade mainland Japan.
This powerful narrative took root quickly and is now deeply embedded in our historical sense of who we are as a nation. A decade ago, on the 50th anniversary, this narrative was reinforced in an exhibit at the Smithsonian Institution on the Enola Gay, the plane that dropped the first bomb. The exhibit, which had been the subject of a bruising political battle, presented nearly 4 million Americans with an officially sanctioned view of the atomic bombings that again portrayed them as a necessary act in a just war.
But although patriotically correct, the exhibit and the narrative on which it was based were historically inaccurate. For one thing, the Smithsonian downplayed the casualties, saying only that the bombs "caused many tens of thousands of deaths" and that Hiroshima was "a definite military target."
Americans were also told that use of the bombs "led to the immediate surrender of Japan and made unnecessary the planned invasion of the Japanese home islands." But it's not that straightforward. As Tsuyoshi Hasegawa has shown definitively in his new book, "Racing the Enemy" — and many other historians have long argued — it was the Soviet Union's entry into the Pacific war on Aug. 8, two days after the Hiroshima bombing, that provided the final "shock" that led to Japan's capitulation.
The Enola Gay exhibit also repeated such outright lies as the assertion that "special leaflets were dropped on Japanese cities" warning civilians to evacuate. The fact is that atomic bomb warning leaflets were dropped on Japanese cities, but only after Hiroshima and Nagasaki had been destroyed.
The hard truth is that the atomic bombings were unnecessary. A million lives were not saved. Indeed, McGeorge Bundy, the man who first popularized this figure, later confessed that he had pulled it out of thin air in order to justify the bombings in a 1947 Harper's magazine essay he had ghostwritten for Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson.
The bomb was dropped, as J. Robert Oppenheimer, scientific director of the Manhattan Project, said in November 1945, on "an essentially defeated enemy." President Truman and his closest advisor, Secretary of State James Byrnes, quite plainly used it primarily to prevent the Soviets from sharing in the occupation of Japan. And they used it on Aug. 6 even though they had agreed among themselves as they returned home from the Potsdam Conference on Aug. 3 that the Japanese were looking for peace.
These unpleasant historical facts were censored from the 1995 Smithsonian exhibit, an action that should trouble every American. When a government substitutes an officially sanctioned view for publicly debated history, democracy is diminished.
Today, in the post-9/11 era, it is critically important that the U.S. face the truth about the atomic bomb. For one thing, the myths surrounding Hiroshima have made it possible for our defense establishment to argue that atomic bombs are legitimate weapons that belong in a democracy's arsenal. But if, as Oppenheimer said, "they are weapons of aggression, of surprise and of terror," how can a democracy rely on such weapons?
Oppenheimer understood very soon after Hiroshima that these weapons would ultimately threaten our very survival.
Presciently, he even warned us against what is now our worst national nightmare — and Osama bin Laden's frequently voiced dream — an atomic suitcase bomb smuggled into an American city: "Of course it could be done," Oppenheimer told a Senate committee, "and people could destroy New York."
Ironically, Hiroshima's myths are now motivating our enemies to attack us with the very weapon we invented. Bin Laden repeatedly refers to Hiroshima in his rambling speeches. It was, he believes, the atomic bombings that shocked the Japanese imperial government into an early surrender — and, he says, he is planning an atomic attack on the U.S. that will similarly shock us into retreating from the Mideast.
Finally, Hiroshima's myths have gradually given rise to an American unilateralism born of atomic arrogance.
Oppenheimer warned against this "sleazy sense of omnipotence." He observed that "if you approach the problem and say, 'We know what is right and we would like to use the atomic bomb to persuade you to agree with us,' then you are in a very weak position and you will not succeed…. You will find yourselves attempting by force of arms to prevent a disaster."
Date: Thu, 04 Aug 2005 19:20:49 -0400
From: "Alan Korwin" alan@GUNLAWS.COM
Subject: Civil rights question meets guns
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Aug. 4, 2005
Complete contact info at end
KEY CIVIL-RIGHTS LAWS ADDED TO GUN LIST
Ten years of delay finally corrected
by Alan Korwin, Author
Gun Laws of America
Does a fine line separate some gun laws from other statutes? Four
controversial laws in particular have long remained outside the unabridged guide, "Gun Laws of America." The Tenth Anniversary edition however, just released by Phoenix-based Bloomfield Press, includes these laws for the first time. ( Full details at gunlaws.com )
Statutes that specifically protect constitutional rights, often called civil-rights laws, do not mention guns per se. Despite this, experts and customers have for years been asking why we do not include these laws, which they believe fit the guidelines of "Gun Laws of America."
These civil-rights laws basically criminalize private or governmental
interference with constitutional rights. After our ten-year review, we are now of the opinion that these laws do merit inclusion, and should have been included all along. They are: Conspiracy Against Rights, Deprivation of Rights Under Color of Law, Statements or Entries Generally, and Civil Action for Deprivation of Rights (USC: 18-241, 18-242, 18-1001, 42-1983). By way of illustration, the gist for the first one, Conspiracy Against Rights, on the books for nearly 60 years, is:
18 USC 241. If two or more people conspire to injure, oppress, threaten or intimidate any person in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured under the Constitution or laws of the United States, they shall be fined, or imprisoned up to ten years, or both. The same penalty applies if two or more people go, in disguise, on the highway, or on the premises of a person, with similar intent to prevent or hinder such rights or privileges.
If death results from such acts, or if such acts include kidnapping,
attempted kidnapping, aggravated sexual assault, attempted aggravated
sexual assault, or an attempt to kill, they may be fined, imprisoned for any term of years up to life, or put to death.
The plain language of this statute suggests that such criminal violations regularly occur with respect to the right to arms, making these laws quite relevant, and apparently under-enforced. We apologize for the delay.
[Backgrounder: Bloomfield Press is the largest publisher of gun law
books in the country, founded in 1989. Our website, gunlaws.com, features
a free national directory to gun laws and relevant contacts in all
states and federally, along with our unique line of related books and DVDs.
"Gun Laws of America" for police department and news-media review is
free on request, call 1-800-707-4020. Our authors are available for
interview, call us to schedule. Call for cogent positions on gun issues,
informed analysis on proposed laws, talk radio that lights up the
switchboard, fact sheets and position papers. As we always say, "It doesn't
make sense to own a gun and not know the rules."]
"We publish the gun laws."
4718 E. Cactus #440
Phoenix, AZ 85032
Call, write, fax or click for a free catalog.
Never forget that your rights are why you can live the way you do. Imagine if your rights were more robust.
Encourage politicians to pass more laws... with expiration dates
Ex-officer going to prison for sex crimes admits killing AJ boy
The Arizona Republic
Aug. 6, 2005 12:00 AM
As Kraig Robert Clark was preparing to be sent to prison on sex charges, the former Tempe police officer dropped a bombshell: He admitted the murder and dismemberment of a 13-year-old Apache Junction boy, according to Surprise police reports released Friday.
Clark, who turns 39 on Monday, apparently wanted to get the slaying off his chest after he was found guilty May 31 of multiple sex crimes involving other boys.
During a voluntary interview with authorities, Clark confessed to strangling Jamie Jarosik on Feb. 19, 2004, after engaging in sexual acts with the boy at Clark's apartment in Surprise, police said.
Clark also confessed to purchasing an electric saw,which was used to dismember the boy in a shower and put the parts in plastic bags. The parts were placed in a refrigerator and a large plastic cooler with wheels while Clark scouted for a place in the desert to get rid of the body.
Later, he drove the body parts to 219th Avenue, north of the Sun Valley Parkway, where he burned the remains with pallets before burying them.
Clark and his lawyer, Daniel Patterson, a deputy Maricopa County public defender, made the confession on June 29.
Two weeks later, Clark pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in the death and was sentenced to life in prison, officers said. Clark also was sentenced to in 162 years in prison on more than a dozen sex crimes, according to Superior Court records.
During the sex-crimes investigations, Jarosik's name came up, but nothing could be established about what happened to the boy, who police described as a runaway.
After the confession, Clark took investigators to the area where he buried the remains in a failed attempt to find them, said Officer Marci Darrow, a Surprise police spokeswoman.
"There has been so much rain and new vegetation that he couldn't find the right spot," Darrow said. "Even cadaver dogs haven't been able to discover the right spot."
Two days before Clark pleaded guilty, police went to the Apache Junction home of Michael Jarosik, the father, to inform him about Clark's confession.
Neither Jarosik nor Patterson, Clark's attorney, could be reached Friday for comment about the case.
In their report, police said Clark was a pizza deliveryman when Jamie Jarosik was killed, but has previous employment as a police officer.
He was a Tempe officer from May 1987 through July 1991 and a Mohave County sheriff's deputy from August 1991 to September 1992.
Clark resigned from the Tempe job amid allegations of sexual contact with a boy, but Maricopa County prosecutors declined to file charges, Surprise police said.
Police said Clark lost the Mohave County job after the 14-year-old son of another deputy accused Clark of molestation.
A Mohave County grand jury indicted Clark on 10 counts of child molestation, but prosecutors dropped the case after the boy was killed in an accident.
Prosecutors struck a deal in which they dismissed the case in return for Clark's surrender of his Arizona peace-officer license, thus barring him from getting another job as a police officer.
Clark later obtained employment with a civilian contractor as a security guard at Luke Air Force Base, police said.
Reach the reporter at (602) 444-6937.
Ex-cop admits slaying A.J. boy, 13
By Kristina Davis, Tribune
August 6, 2005
A former Tempe police officer, just convicted on several molestation charges, admitted to the brutal slaying of an Apache Junction boy he molested who has been missing since last year, Surprise police said Friday.
Kraig Clark pleaded guilty July 15 to strangling and then dismembering 13-year-old Jamie Jarosik in February 2004 after the teen ran away from home, according to police records.
The admission comes as part of a plea agreement after Clark was found guilty of molesting and having sex with several boys during the year. The agreement called for Clark to show investigators where the teen’s remains were buried.
Clark told detectives that Jarosik ran away from home on Feb. 2, 2004, and came to stay with Clark at his Surprise apartment. Clark said he had molested Jarosik several times in the past.
After a few weeks, Jarosik left Clark’s apartment to stay somewhere else, but then called Clark begging to come back to the apartment, according to the report. Clark told police that Jarosik even threatened to go to police about their sexual relationship if he couldn’t come back.
Clark said he strangled Jarosik on the morning of Feb. 19 as the two were lying in bed together, the report said.
He then bought a reciprocating saw and extra blades at Wal-Mart later that morning and dismembered the teen’s body in the shower, the report stated.
Afterward, he cleaned the saw, replaced the original blade, and returned it to Wal-Mart.
Clark burned the body parts in a desert area near 219th Avenue and Sun Valley Parkway that night and buried the ashes, the report stated. He showed investigators the desert area on July 6, but there were no signs of the remains.
Clark was sentenced to life in prison on the molestation charges.
Contact Kristina Davis by email, or phone (480)-898-6446
if your latino and we aint got a law we can arrest you for we will just make one up!
Immigrants in N.H. being arrested for trespassing
Judge to decide whether tactic is legally valid
Los Angeles Times
Aug. 6, 2005 12:00 AM
JAFFREY, N.H. - A judge heard lawyers for an area police department argue Friday that stopping undocumented immigrants in their vehicles and arresting them for criminal trespass is a novel and legally valid way to promote public safety and protect national borders.
"What the state is doing in this case, we are trying to create a situation where within our community, police are able to perform their function of protecting public safety by enabling the citizenry to know who is among them," said prosecutor Brenda Hume, representing the police chief of the small town of Hudson.
But attorneys for seven undocumented immigrants, all from Latin America, countered that immigration laws were federally determined and that state and local authorities could not establish policies about who could enter or remain in a state or municipality.
"It is not the role of the local police or state police to create and/or enforce state laws that conflict with (federal) immigration laws, because their actions can have a negative effect on national security," defense attorney Mona T. Movafaghi said.
Jaffrey-Peterborough District Court Judge L. Phillips Runyon III said Friday that he would issue a written decision on the request by the immigrants' lawyers to dismiss all charges.
The seeds for the case were sown when Police Chief W. Garrett Chamberlain of New Ipswich, another small town in this region of southern New Hampshire, stopped a van for speeding last summer. Inside, Chamberlain found 10 men from Ecuador. All said that they did not have valid immigration documents.
Chamberlain said he was concerned about threats to homeland security when he called the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency - and was told to let the men go. He then met with a local prosecutor to try to find a legal basis to pursue undocumented immigrants.
They decided to invoke a New Hampshire law that states that "a person is guilty of criminal trespass if, knowing he is not licensed or privileged to do so, he enters or remains in any place."
Chamberlain made his first arrest using the tactic in April, when Jorge Mora Ramirez's car broke down along a New Ipswich road. Police said Ramirez produced false identification and a Mexico driver's license.
Soon police Chief Richard Gendron of nearby Hudson followed suit. His officers used the trespass law to cite at least eight people. All were young men working as roofers or landscapers.
At a preliminary hearing in June, Runyon said he would rule on a request to dismiss the Ramirez case after he had heard initial arguments from the Hudson defendants.
Police dismissed charges against one man arrested in Hudson without comment. Six defendants appeared before the judge Friday, but a seventh inadvertently went to the wrong courthouse in a different city. None of the defendants speaks English.
Several of the men were represented by lawyers hired by the Mexican government, whose Boston consul general declared Friday's proceeding "legally invalid, discriminatory and a violation of human rights."
At the courthouse here, Consul General Porfirio Thierry Munoz Ledo also accused the two New Hampshire police chiefs of usurping federal authority.
Defense lawyer Randall A. Drew agreed, telling Runyon that only the federal government could determine who is "licensed or privileged" to enter a state. Drew said Congress had created "an entire set of laws" to cover immigration, and that having a state exercise such power "is not justifiable on a constitutional basis."
Drew said there was no record of state legislators discussing immigration when they amended criminal trespass laws to broaden domestic violence statutes.
But state Rep. Andrew Renzullo said the Republican immigration caucus was considering measures to codify the trespass law for use in immigration cases. Renzullo praised the two police chiefs for their inventive application of the existing law.
"I would hope this is a precedent," he said. "I would hope it gives encouragement to other states to take on this issue, because the federal government isn't doing the job."
The population of New Hampshire is 96 percent Anglo. The 424-member state House of Representatives has two Hispanic members.
¿Qué es el First Friday?
Por Luis Avila
Agosto 3, 2005
Es una desgracia que muchos residentes del Valle del Sol no estén enterados de la existencia de este interesante festival que ya tiene 7 años de vida.
El First Friday o “Primer Viernes” es un festival de arte, en el cual se pueden visitar las mejores galerías de la ciudad, escuchar música en vivo, cenar en compañía de amigos o familiares, y experimentar la creciente vida urbana del centro de Phoenix.
Este festival invita a los residentes del valle a tomar un tour autodirigido, en el cual se pueden apreciar distintas formas de arte que van desde las plásticas, hasta la música, la danza y una que otra vez la poesía improvisada.
Cada primer viernes del mes, el centro de la ciudad hospeda a más de 3 mil personas, quienes durante horas caminan por las galerías, restaurantes, cafés y casas convertidas en galerías improvisadas.
El evento se desprendió de un famoso festival iniciado en los ochentas, el cual traía a los mejores artistas locales a exponer su arte cada año.
En los años ochenta la comunidad del Valle del Sol comenzó a interesarse en el desarrollo del arte, y mediante propuestas electorales los ciudadanos decidieron la construcción del Museo de la Ciudad, el de Ciencias y la Biblioteca Central.
Dado el clima de interés por el arte que originó el proceso electoral, los residentes de la ciudad pedían más, y hablaban de las necesidades de crecimiento artístico de Phoenix, así que varias organizaciones comenzaron a promoverlo por medio de galerías que habían sido desplazadas de sus lugares originales por la construcción de la América West Arena.
Después de unos años, en 1998, la organización sin fines de lucro Artlink se aventuró a la planeación del First Friday, y desde entonces el evento ha sido un éxito.
Este festival artístico se caracteriza por no tener la opulencia tradicional del arte. No hay champaña, cócteles y gente de vestidos largos; más bien es una noche llena de energía de artistas nuevos, una noche en la que los residentes del centro abren sus casas y departamentos y exponen el arte de extraños.
Estas casas son la mejor parte del First Friday. Sí, las galerías tienen un sentido interesante, y los artistas ahí expuestos son excelentes, pero en las casas particulares en las que se improvisa una galería los residentes venden bebidas y refrigerios que hacen del First Friday una noche especial, mágica y con el sentimiento urbano de las grandes ciudades.
Miles de visitantes se dan cita cada mes en el área de las calles Roosevelt y cuatro, pero el festival se extiende desde la Indian School hasta la calle Buchanan, y desde la calle 12 hasta la avenida 17.
Existe un servicio de transporte gratuito para estos eventos que facilitan el acceso y el tiempo utilizado para apreciar el arte, el cual la mayoría de las veces es encontrado hasta a mitad de precio en comparación con las galerías convencionales.
Este viernes cinco de agosto visite el First Friday y conozca lo mejor del talento artístico local.
El festival inicia desde las seis de la tarde y termina a las 11 de la noche.
Para recibir más información acerca de los eventos del First Friday llame al 602-256-7539.
Man who struggled with Phoenix police dies after Taser use
Aug. 8, 2005 08:05 AM
A 47-year-old man died after a struggle with three Phoenix police officers, during which at least one of them used a Taser to subdue him, authorities said.
The confrontation occurred Sunday night at a fast-food restaurant in north Phoenix.
Officers were called to the Tacos Jalisco at Seventh Street and Mountainview after the suspect had vandalized two restrooms.
Employees told police the man appeared to be crazed - that they had seen him hitting the window of a nearby business with a metal rod before entering the restaurant.
Police say the suspect was extremely combative as three officers attempted to take him into custody, and that at least one officer used a Taser.
When they got outside, the officers said they noticed that the suspect's breathing had slowed. Paramedics were called and the man was taken to a nearby hospital, where he died a short time later.
New Buckeye police chief suing Arpaio, but it's still business as usual
Aug. 8, 2005 12:00 AM
A few weeks ago, at a county jail facility, Dan Saban found himself facing his nemesis: Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Saban is suing Arpaio, saying he spread a story about Saban raping his adoptive mother. But Saban didn't address that when he saw Arpaio. He just sat with his arms folded and grinned while Arpaio gave a speech on homeland security.
The confrontational meetings will take place in a courtroom. But the two will find themselves meeting and corresponding regularly over the next few years. Saban, who ran unsuccessfully against Arpaio in last year's election, has a new job: police chief in Buckeye.
"We saw each other," Saban said, recounting the law enforcement gathering at the new jail facility on Fourth Avenue in Phoenix. "It's hard to miss me in a room. That's because I haven't missed many meals."
Arpaio left the meeting after speaking, ending any chance for tension-filled or awkward moments between the two. It was the same the week before up in Flagstaff, at the summit Gov. Janet Napolitano called to talk about illegal immigration issues. Saban, a big man who sometimes adds to his height with a cowboy hat, spotted Arpaio across the crowded room. Saban stayed away. And he said Arpaio was surrounded by a posse that probably would have made sure Saban didn't get close.
Saban said his lawsuit against Arpaio is not business; it's strictly personal.
He filed it in March, shortly after getting the police chief's job in Buckeye, a rapidly expanding town on the western edge of metropolitan Phoenix. Saban initially worried that his beef with Arpaio would be an issue for the town leaders. Maybe they wouldn't want the distinction of having the only police chief actively suing the county sheriff.
"That could be perceived as baggage," Saban said.
But the town's leaders said they supported his right to sue, so long as he didn't involve the town. Saban promised that wouldn't be a problem.
"I'm a professional. It's not fair to the taxpayers to carry it over to here," Saban said, sitting behind the brown desk that dominates his small office. "Are (Arpaio and I) going to go to coffee together or cordially go have lunch? No. But I'm a professional. . . . I'm sworn to that."
Buckeye works closely with the county. That's spelled out, literally, in big letters on the building where Saban works: the Buckeye/Maricopa County Municipal Center.
The town, which has only 45 officers, constantly relies on the county for help. Just recently, sheriff's deputies brought over equipment to help Buckeye officers investigate a fatal car wreck. Saban also sent a letter to Arpaio in July thanking him for his deputies' work on a task force that stopped and inspected commercial trucks traveling through Buckeye. "We hope to have more details like this and look forward to working with your agency again," the letter read.
Such polite words are not found in the lawsuit against Arpaio.
Arpaio's office had two deputies interview Saban's adoptive mother, who had claimed that Saban raped her when he was a teenager in the early 1970s. Two days later, that report was in the hands of a television reporter for Channel 15 (KNXV), who confronted Saban on camera with the charge. Saban is also suing the TV station.
After conducting the interview, the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office transferred the case to the Pima County Sheriff's Office in Tucson, saying it could not investigate Arpaio's political opponent. The Pima County Sheriff closed the case shortly thereafter, saying it was too old to pursue.
Saban had broken off ties with his adoptive mother soon after he turned 18. So had his two brothers, both of whom also entered law enforcement. Saban retired in 2004 after 25 years at the Mesa Police Department. He lost to Arpaio in September's Republican primary by 27,000 votes.
After the campaign, the 49-year-old took some time off, but he had promised his wife they'd move out of their ranch property in Mesa and into a new home in Gilbert.
"I had to start looking for a new job," Saban said, chuckling.
Buckeye, sitting along Interstate 10 and about 20 miles west of Phoenix, had been without a police chief for months. The town had largely been an agricultural hub and wide spot on the freeway. The police department sits down the street from a slaughterhouse. A gas station at the town's entrance has truck scales.
But Buckeye was set to sprout homes. The town had annexed a wide swath of land and expects to zoom from its current population of just over 17,000 to more than 100,000 within four years. It needed to create a big-city operation.
After Saban took the job in March, he audited the department's operations. He found much he didn't like. He suspended six officers and started dozens of investigations against others. A reserve officer whom Saban accused of mishandling evidence resigned last week.
Saban said he has heard from residents who are grateful that he's helping the department shed it's good-ol'-boy image.
The housecleaning brought criticism from the town's mayor, Dustin Hull, who tried to rally support for Saban's ouster. Hull has since backed off.
"I'm not going to butt heads with the man. I'm going to wait and see," Hull said.
Hull was not worried about the lawsuit against Arpaio.
"If the problem is between the sheriff and the chief, I don't think it will have anything to do with law enforcement," he said.
Arpaio, through a spokesman, said the suit would not affect relations with Buckeye.
"The sheriff represents the people and voters of Buckeye and all of Maricopa County," said Jack McIntyre, the sheriff's head of intergovernmental relations.
McIntyre also called Saban's lawsuit against Arpaio "silly" and "frivolous."
KNXV, in court papers, denies Saban's allegations that it acted irresponsibly.
Saban said he might run for sheriff again in 2007. Doing well as Buckeye police chief might endear the lifelong East Valley resident to voters on the west side, he said.
"I can really make an impression," he said. "We're going to build a top-notch organization here."
Even if doing so means occasional dealings with Arpaio.
"Joe and I, we're peers now," Saban said.
He had no trepidations about their two previous run-ins and expects none in the future.
"I fear God, and I fear my wife," he said. "No one else."
Reach Ruelas at richard .email@example.com or (602) 444-8473.
How do you spell $revenue$?? 15 mph school zones.
Traffic officers at school zones
As classes start, police step up speed patrols
The Arizona Republic
Aug. 8, 2005 12:00 AM
That's the message law enforcement officers are stressing for motorists passing through school zones as thousands of Valley students return to the classroom this month.
Police agencies across the Valley, including Phoenix, Glendale, Mesa, Scottsdale and Peoria police, have announced stepped-up enforcement with the start of the new school year.
In Phoenix, about 150 motorcycle officers will patrol school zones surrounding nearly 2,000 schools.
And they aren't cutting motorists any slack. At 7:30 a.m. one morning last week near Seventh Avenue and Vineyard Road, Phoenix motorcycle Officer Mike Warren eyed a driver going a bit too fast.
"Got her," he said, tucking away his radar gun before pulling the woman over across the street from Lassen Elementary School.
The culprit: A teacher, driving 7 mph too fast. She said she thought the speed limit in school zones was 35 mph. The actual limit is 15 mph.
Such zone violations are "a real problem," said Officer Terry Sills, traffic complaint coordinator for Phoenix police. "People just aren't paying attention."
Even just a few miles per hour above the limit can be deadly, Sills said.
"Any increase in speed increases the stopping distance and puts those children at risk of not being seen until too late," Sills explained.
Phoenix officers issued 20 citations at that intersection in just under two hours.
Residents near Lassen say they're concerned about the motorists who speed by on Seventh Avenue.
Maria Mariscal, who was taking her 8-year-old brother, Michael, to school, worried about drivers simply not seeing kids in the crosswalk.
"We don't let him cross by himself," she said.
Officials from Valley police and fire departments as well as other government agencies taught about 150 crossing guards on Friday how to keep kids safe by properly displaying their STOP signs and how to watch for speeding vehicles. In the past two weeks, about 350 crossing guards have received training.
In Chandler, where students returned to class July 26, Officer John Somerville said 85 to 90 percent of the speeding tickets he writes in school zones are to faculty, staff or parents.
"I get a lot of the 'I come here everyday, I've been here time and time again,' " Somerville said.
"I don't doubt (that) but I think it creates a degree of commonplace. People aren't paying attention to their speed."
Peoria police say that as many as 20 officers may be assigned today for the start of a two-week morning and afternoon school-zone enforcement effort.
"The officers will take a zero-tolerance approach, cracking down on drivers violating traffic laws, speed limits and seat-belt or car-seat requirements," said Peoria police spokeswoman Shelly Watkins.
And in Scottsdale, crime prevention officers in each of the city's three police districts have been emphasizing the importance of driving carefully in school zones and slowing at school crosswalks.
"Typically every year, our traffic units concentrate on school zones at the start of the school year," Scottsdale police spokesman Sgt. Mark Clark said.
"We're there to remind motorists who may not be used to driving in school zones to heed the speed limit."
Violations can be hefty for school-zone violators. Failing to stop for a pedestrian or speeding in a school zone will cost a motorist $127 and two points on his or her license. Drivers could be eligible for a one-time defensive-driving course.
Reporters Brent Whiting, Lindsey Collom, Senta Scarborough and Holly Johnson contributed to this article.
Bombs, not bullets, GIs' biggest killers
Blasts becoming more powerful, sophisticated
Robert H. Reid and Jim Krane
Aug. 8, 2005 12:00 AM
BAGHDAD - Bombs like the titanic roadside blast that killed 14 Marines last week are becoming the biggest killers of U.S. troops in Iraq, surpassing bullets, rockets and mortars, as insurgents wage an unconventional war that has boosted the American death toll beyond 1,820.
This isn't a conflict like the two World Wars or Vietnam, where waves of enemy ground troops backed by artillery attacked American firebases.
Gone, too, are the intense street battles waged last year in cities like Najaf, Karbala and Fallujah, or in Nasiriyah during the 2003 invasion.
Americans still die in mortar strikes and gunfights, like the six Marine snipers killed Aug. 1 in a rebel ambush. But surprise blasts have become the hallmarks of the Iraq war.
Since the end of May, more than 65 percent of U.S. military deaths in Iraq have resulted from insurgent bombings, compared with nearly 23 percent in conventional combat and 12 percent in accidents, according to figures compiled by the Associated Press and Defense Department explanations for deaths.
In recent weeks, rebel bombs have been responsible for 70 to 80 percent of American soldiers killed or wounded, Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Steven Boylan said this week.
Of the 54 American troops who died in Iraq in July, 42 were killed either by roadside bombs, car bombs or in one case a land mine. So far this month, 29 soldiers and Marines have died, all but nine from bombs. These figures document an evolution in rebel tactics. Looking back to the start of the U.S.-led war in March 2003, about 32 percent of American military deaths have been from improvised explosions, suicide bombs or other such blasts, compared with about 48 percent in firefights and other combat. A little more than 19 percent died in accidents.
The toll for those with Arizona ties has been even greater than the national trend. Since the start of the war, 42.3 percent of the 52 Arizona troops who died in Iraq were killed by explosive blasts. The percentage of those who died from accidents, including illness or vehicle crashes is 23.1, higher than the national toll. Only 34.6 percent of Arizonans died because of combat, compared with 48.5 percent nationally.
Just over half the Arizona troops who died between June 2004 and today (15 out of 29) were killed in an explosion.
The insurgent bomb strategy is frustrating for American troops, who watch comrades die without being able to retaliate as they have been trained: with punishing return fire.
Instead, the bombs are either delivered by a suicide driver or detonated remotely.
"That's the insurgent strategy, this pervasive insecurity," RAND Corp. counterinsurgency expert Bruce Hoffman said. "You can't fight against an unseen enemy."
Iraq has turned into a struggle that pits Americans' conventional arms against gritty rebel innovation.
As Americans have added armor, the insurgent bombs, which the U.S. military refers to as improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, have gotten bigger.
Guerrillas have learned in more than two years of fighting how to make their bombs invisible and far more deadly.
One new bomb design features a steel plate underneath that directs the blast up into a passing vehicle. Another fires a solid steel penetrator that can pierce the armor.
Although the number of vehicle and roadside bombings is decreasing, U.S. commanders warn that they are rising in power and sophistication, enough for the Pentagon to establish an IED task force.
The number of combat deaths blamed on IEDs jumped from about 26 percent in 2004 to 51 percent as of early June, according to the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.
Reporter Connie Cone Sexton contributed to this article.
GI: We were told how to deliver blows
New York Times
Aug. 8, 2005 12:00 AM
FORT BLISS, Texas - Military prosecutors have been moving briskly to dispense with the cases they have filed in the brutal deaths in 2002 of two Afghan prisoners at the U.S. military detention center in Bagram, Afghanistan.
On Thursday, a military intelligence sergeant pleaded guilty to assault and dereliction of duty for abusing one of the prisoners during an interrogation. Another interrogator, accused of tormenting detainees with particular cruelty, agreed to plead guilty two days earlier. Military lawyers said that a plea deal was being negotiated with a third interrogator.
Military officials said they hoped the prosecutions would send a message that such abuses would not be tolerated. So far, however, what the cases have more vividly suggested is how unprepared many soldiers were for their duties at Bagram, how loosely some were supervised and how vaguely the rules were often defined.
In the first interview granted by any of the soldiers accused in the case, a former guard charged with maiming and assault said he and other reservist military policemen were specifically instructed at Bagram how to deliver the type of blows that killed the two detainees.
"I just don't understand how, if we were given training to do this, you can say that we were wrong and should have known better," said Pvt. Willie V. Brand, 26, of Cincinnati, who volunteered for tours in Afghanistan and Kosovo.
i beleive this means that the law takes effect on aug 12 that requires you to verbally tell a cop your name if a) a crime occured and b) he has "resonable suspision" that you might have committed the crime.
Not all new laws apply immediately
By Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services
August 7, 2005
Not everything approved this legislative session kicks in on Aug. 12. Some measures included an emergency clause that allowed them to take effect when signed by the governor.
That was the case, for example, with a bill that says once someone reaches age 75, he or she is no longer required to report for jury service. Gov. Janet Napolitano inked her approval to that on April 13.
Other proposals are given more time to take effect.
Legislation that requires elementary, middle and junior high schools to stop selling junk food does not kick in until next school year. That gives the state Department of Education the time to come up with standards to determine what is — and is not — acceptable.
Retailers have been given until the end of October to comply with new laws that require certain cold medicines containing pseudoephedrine to be sold from behind a locked counter.
That same deadline also exists for companies to alter their gift cards to ensure that those who purchase them know if there is an expiration date and if any fees apply, either for using them or not.
A change in state tax laws to let multistate corporations select alternate methods of computing their income taxes does not take effect until 2007.
And new energy efficiency standards for appliances do not become law until 2008.
Even some of the measures that technically become law on Aug. 12 will not take effect right away. For example, a law that gives a graduating high school senior "bonus’’ points on the AIMS test required to get a diploma won’t become necessary until the end of the current school year.
Contact Howard Fischer by telephone at () -.
either our military leaders are idiots or liars.
In the fourth week of escalating attacks on our troops, and following one single attack that killed 14 troops, U.S. military spokesman Lt. Col. Steve Boylan said that this "does not mean that there is a spike in attacks or that they are becoming more effective against our forces."
Just exactly what does this mean? Does this indicate that maybe the insurgency is in its "last throes," in the immortal words of Vice President Dick Cheney? Does this mean that our troops will be home for Christmas?
Boylan may have made himself famous with this remark. Notwithstanding this personal achievement, this is a strong indication that the military leadership in Iraq is not up to the task, and that their failures in perception are causing us to lose more troops than necessary. Boylan has probably demonstrated sufficient incompetence to qualify him for a Presidential Medal of Freedom. If that would cause him to be rotated home and away from the troops, it would be a good move.
I suspect the stolen cop car was parked in from of Commander Thomas Long's home. I used to ride my bike in that area and there is one home that always had several cars that looked like cop cars parked in front of it. I suspect that it is Tempe Police Commanders Thomas Long's home. The home is on the north side of Clarendon one or two blocks east of 36th Street. Isn't it the cops who always tell us to never park our cars and leave the keys in them?
(Sorry No URL. I hand typed it)
East Valley Tribune
Aug 8, 2005
Tempe cop’s car stolen in Phoenix
A Tempe police commander’s unmarked vehicle with the keys inside was stolen Saturday night.
Cmdr. Thomas Long’s gold 1998 Chevy Lumina had a SWAT uniform, police ID card, gun and ballistics plates that go inside a bulletproof vest when it was stolen in the 3600 block of East Clarendon Street in Phoenix, according to a police report.
Tempe police could not be reached for comment, and Phoenix Police had no further information.
Tribune writer Katie McDevitt complied this report. (480)898-6334
Police search for equipment, vehicle stolen from officer
The Arizona Republic
Aug. 9, 2005 12:00 AM
TEMPE - Tempe police are conducting an internal investigation into the weekend disappearance of a police commander's department car, uniforms and gun.
The car was stolen Saturday, and Phoenix police are searching for the items.
Before the theft, Cmdr. Tom Long was showing a friend and her 6-year-old son around the Police Department's substation in south Tempe, he told investigators. They then went for ice cream.
It was about 11 p.m. when Long dropped the pair off at their east Phoenix home. He walked them to their door, leaving the four-door, gold Chevy Lumina idling at the end of a driveway.
The booty included many police items: a Glock .45-caliber handgun, six navy Tempe police uniforms, Long's police ID, boots, camouflage pants and several SWAT training shirts, according to Dan Masters, department spokesman.
The car is one of the police's 112 take-home cars and motorcycles. Department members are allowed to drive the vehicles to and from work and for on-duty purposes.
Long, a 17-year police veteran, could be disciplined after the internal investigation, Masters said, but no details will be released until its completion. Until then, Long will still act as the downtown and tactical commander.
"Tom has been nothing short of forthcoming," Masters said.
"He acknowledges he used poor judgment."
The car is a 1998 model with tinted windows and Arizona license plate 334-BRW.
Scottsdale church pastor is arrested
The Arizona Republic
Aug. 9, 2005 12:00 AM
SCOTTSDALE - Police on Monday arrested a pastor who is accused of using about $60,000 in church funds for personal expenses.
Police arrested the Rev. Patrick A. Shetler at his Scottsdale home and booked him into jail on suspicion of felony theft and fraud. Shelter was later released.
Shetler, who owed $174,000 to creditors, filed for bankruptcy in September, four months before evidence surfaced that he had allegedly been stealing from his congregation.
Shetler, pastor of the Glass and Garden Community Church, 86th Street and McDonald Drive, was fired in July. Evidence of Shetler's alleged misappropriation of church funds surfaced in January, police say.
Shetler told church officials that he had taken only $20,000.
Shetler, and his wife, Rhonda, listed no assets in their Sept. 28 bankruptcy filing. The records include more than 160 creditors, including department stores, car dealers, bank cards, a student loan, and hospital and medical expenses.
Don Walsemann, a church vice president, said Shetler, who was hired in 1999, had medical insurance. But bankruptcy records do not indicate the date of the medical services. Some debts date back to 1998.
The couple filed for Chapter 7 protection, meaning they do not have to repay the debts. The U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Phoenix discharged the case Jan. 27.
Walsemann said he was shocked at the amount of Shetler's debts and said the pastor should have informed the board that he had filed for bankruptcy.