Florida Town's History Of 'Sloppy' Police Work

Discussion in 'George Zimmerman Trial/Trayvon Martin' started by LiveLaughLuv, May 11, 2012.

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  1. LiveLaughLuv

    LiveLaughLuv New Member

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    Trayvon Martin Case Spotlights Florida Town's History Of 'Sloppy' Police Work
    Posted: 04/ 9/2012 8:35 am Updated: 04/ 9/2012 1:01 pm

    SANFORD, Fla. -- In the summer of 2010, a masked man gunned down Ikeem Ruffin, 17, in an apartment complex on this city's north side. When police arrived, they found Ruffin dead and another teenager beside the body calling for an ambulance. The next day, police charged the teen with robbery and murder.

    Prosecutors dropped the murder charge last August and said another man, still unidentified, pulled the trigger. Teresa Ruffin, the victim's mother, said the police overlooked important evidence -- including a witness who pointed to another suspect -- and allowed her son's killer to go free.

    "They didn't do their job," Ruffin said of the police.

    Ruffin, who is black, said she sees parallels between how Sanford police officers handled her son’s murder and how they investigated the killing of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed teenager shot to death Feb. 26 by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer who told police he acted in self-defense.

    Police said they couldn't refute Zimmerman's claim and haven't arrested him, unleashing withering criticism over perceived missteps and favoritism.


    much more at the link:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/09/trayvon-martin-cops-botched-investigation_n_1409277.html


    Staff/Mods hope this thread is okay...very enlightening article on not just TM investigation but other investigations that lay claim to SPD and their shoddy investigations..

    Which I believe is why there is such a firestorm on the charges brought against GZ...had this happened at the time of the killing of TM, there might not be such an emotionally charged divide among those who believe in GZ and others who want justice for TM an innocent teen who's life was tragically taken..

    Justice for Trayvon Martin
     
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  3. Just K

    Just K New Member

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    A Google Search on "The Groveland Four" will shed light on the long history of LE issues, in Central Florida. Research shows a powerful group of LE and average citizens who have come under suspicion as it pertains to race, the KKK and more. The story of Sandford is just the tip of the iceberg, IMO.

    http://www2.orlandoweekly.com/news/story.asp?id=8162
     
  4. LiveLaughLuv

    LiveLaughLuv New Member

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    New Sanford police chief to review department in Trayvon Martin case
    By Frances Robles The Miami Herald

    A new interim police chief took over Sanford’s embattled police department, saying he will conduct an “A-Z review.”

    By Frances Robles
    frobles@MiamiHerald.com
    SANFORD -- The city of Sanford took its first step toward fixing its damaged police department Friday, when an interim chief took the helm of the troubled force.

    Richard Myers, former police chief of Colorado Springs, will be tasked with conducting a sweeping review of the police department to determine if any long-standing problems led to the fiasco that cost the prior chief his job.

    At a news conference Friday, Myers acknowledged that many professional colleagues gave him stern advice: “Turn and run in the opposite direction.”
    “I will study and learn and listen,” Myers said. “Most of all, I will listen.”
    Myers will hold the job for three months or longer, City Manager Norton Bonaparte said.



    Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/05/04/2783335/new-sanford-police-chief-to-review.html#storylink=cpy
     
  5. LiveLaughLuv

    LiveLaughLuv New Member

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    Sanford police dispute criticism over Trayvon Martin’s death

    By Margaret Kavanagh, Reporter
    Last Updated: Tuesday, April 24, 2012 @ 11:03PM

    SANFORD --
    Members of the Sanford Police Department have been under extreme scrutiny over the last eight weeks since the beginning of the Trayvon Martin death investigation.

    On Tuesday, News 13 met with leaders of the police department to learn what it has been like for them after being criticized by the community, national leaders and around the world -- being called racists and corrupt.

    The police department watches over more than 53,000 residents, and said life has been stressful for their officers over the last two months.

    “When you stretch a rubber band so far, it breaks. We didn't break, but we were stretched and stretched and stretched,” said Acting Deputy Chief Bob O'Connor.

    O'Connor called the accusations against his department hurtful.

    “We are not that monster that they are showing on TV, in the newspaper,” O’Connor said. “That it's not true, in spite of what some people would say, it's not true.”

    He said they have been financially and emotionally stretched.

    O’Connor said they have maxed out overtime after having to add extra patrols for rallies and other events that have taken place. He said officers have been working six or seven days straight.


    http://www.cfnews13.com/content/new...icles/cfn/2012/4/24/sanford_police_dispu.html
     
  6. LiveLaughLuv

    LiveLaughLuv New Member

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    Sanford police chief meets with citizens, but won't discuss Trayvon MartinBy Jamie Novogrod, NBC News

    SANFORD, Fla. -- In his first town hall meeting since becoming interim chief of police, Richard Myers told a crowd of about 50 people that he has not yet received a briefing on the shooting of unarmed teen Trayvon Martin.

    “I’ll be getting that within the next couple of weeks,” Myers said about a series of meetings he expects to hold within the Police Department.

    But Myers added later that he would keep his opinions “pretty close to the vest” in deference to the state’s prosecution of neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman, accused of second-degree murder in Martin’s Feb. 26 shooting.

    http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2...citizens-but-wont-discuss-trayvon-martin?lite
     
  7. LiveLaughLuv

    LiveLaughLuv New Member

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    Trayvon Martin Case: Department of Justice to investigate entire Sanford police
    By WFTV.com Updated: 4:48 p.m. Wednesday, March 28, 2012
    Posted: 9:43 a.m. Wednesday, March 28, 2012

    SANFORD — The Trayvon Martin case is bringing more scrutiny on the Sanford Police Department. The Department of Justice will now investigate all cases handled by the police department, after receiving complaints from Sanford citizens.

    It's been more than a month since 17-year-old Martin was killed and only a week since the Department of Justice, the U.S. Attorney's Office and the FBI launched investigations into why George Zimmerman shot him. Now, the Department of Justice is launching another investigation into the entire Sanford Police Department.

    "The citizens of Sanford will continue to have some idea that their concerns would be heard by an independent agency when they have issues with the Sanford Police Department," said Sanford City Manager Norton Bonaparte.

    Bonaparte announced the new investigation Tuesday afternoon after receiving numerous complaints about the way officers handled other cases.



    http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/s...rtment-of-justice-to-investigate-2266580.html




    That's the shame of it all...not truly investigating brought the worst out..bittersweet, I suppose if some good changes come out of this...
     
  8. LiveLaughLuv

    LiveLaughLuv New Member

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    Sanford city manager admits pushing police chief to quit over Trayvon Martin case

    By NBC News' Jamie Novogrod and Tom Winter
    SANFORD, Fla. -- City Manager Norton Bonaparte Jr. acknowledges that he put pressure last week on Police Chief Bill Lee to step down over the Trayvon Martin case, though he stopped short of saying whether he threatened to fire Lee.

    During a discussion with NBC News on Wednesday, Bonaparte said he held frank conversations with Lee.

    “I did suggest,” Bonaparte said, “for the community to move forward, that he consider resigning.”

    Asked whether the suggestion constituted an ultimatum, Bonaparte demurred.

    "The chief of police, as all of the city department directors, serves at the pleasure of the city manager and can be fired at any time for no cause,” Bonaparte said, adding that he and Lee “came to an agreement.”



    http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2...police-chief-to-quit-over-trayvon-martin-case
     
  9. LiveLaughLuv

    LiveLaughLuv New Member

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    Racist past haunts Florida town where Trayvon died
    By Tom Brown | Reuters – Sun, Apr 8, 2012

    SANFORD, Florida (Reuters) - The year before Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier by becoming the first African American to play major league baseball, he fled the racist threats of townspeople in Sanford, Florida, where Trayvon Martin was shot 66 years later.

    It was 1946 and Robinson arrived in this picturesque town in central Florida for spring training with a Brooklyn Dodgers farm team. He didn't stay long.

    Robinson was forced to leave Sanford twice, according to Chris Lamb, a professor at the College of Charleston in South Carolina, who wrote a graphic account of Robinson's brush with 100 angry locals in a 2004 book.

    The house where Robinson slept during his brief and furtive stay in Sanford still stands, but there is no historical plaque to record his troubled visit before going on to become a baseball hero and an icon of the U.S. civil rights movement.

    "A specter of Jackie Robinson" haunts the city of 53,000 people to this day, said Lamb. "People want to forget it and it shouldn't be forgotten."




    http://news.yahoo.com/racist-past-haunts-florida-town-where-trayvon-died-111413946--mlb.html
     
  10. LiveLaughLuv

    LiveLaughLuv New Member

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    Sanford cops sought warrant to arrest George Zimmerman in Trayvon Martin shooting
    By Frances Robles, Miami Herald
    Frances RoblesTampa Bay Times In Print: Wednesday, March 28, 2012

    SANFORD — Despite public claims that there wasn't enough probable cause to make a criminal case in the Trayvon Martin killing, early in the investigation the Sanford Police Department requested an arrest warrant from the Seminole County State Attorney's Office, the special prosecutor in the case told the Miami Herald on Tuesday.

    A Sanford police incident report shows the case was categorized as "homicide/negligent manslaughter."

    The State Attorney's Office held off pending further review, the Herald reported.

    The Miami Gardens high school junior was killed Feb. 26 by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer. The 28-year-old insurance underwriter and college student was never charged, triggering a nationwide crusade on the dead teenager's behalf.

    Asked to confirm that the police recommended a manslaughter charge, special prosecutor Angela Corey said:

    "I don't know about that, but as far as the process I can tell you that the police went to the state attorney with a capias request, meaning: 'We're through with our investigation and here it is for you.' The state attorney impaneled a grand jury, but before anything else could be done, the governor stepped in and asked us to pick it up in midstream."

    A capias is a request for charges to be filed.

    The Seminole County State Attorney's Office declined to comment on whether its prosecutors ever recommended against filing charges.

    The Herald quoted an unnamed source in the Seminole State Attorney's Office as saying the office gets capias warrants all the time, but that doesn't mean it files charges right away.

    The Seminole County State Attorney's Office was consulted the night of Martin's killing, but no prosecutor ever visited the scene. As the controversy intensified, Gov. Rick Scott replaced Seminole State Attorney Norm Wolfinger with Corey, the state attorney for Duval, Nassau and Clay counties, based in Jacksonville.




    http://www.tampabay.com/news/publicsafety/crime/article1222259.ece
     
  11. LiveLaughLuv

    LiveLaughLuv New Member

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    Trayvon Martin's parents seek federal review of prosecutor

    April 01, 2012|By the CNN Wire Staff


    Trayvon Martin's parents will ask the U.S. Justice Department to review a local Florida prosecutor's interactions with police investigating the teen's shooting death, the family's lawyer said.

    The Justice Department launched an investigation into Martin's death on March 19, but the family is now asking it to look for possible interference by State's Attorney Norm Wolfinger's office with Sanford, Florida, Police Detective Chris Serino, attorney Ben Crump said.

    The Martin family will send a formal request to the Justice Department Monday, Crump told CNN Sunday.

    http://articles.cnn.com/2012-04-01/...hooting-death-police-department?_s=PM:JUSTICE
     
  12. vlpate

    vlpate Sleuther with a porpoise

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    State Attorney Norm Wolfinger Statement on Letter to Department of Justice

    "FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE--April 2, 2011

    I am outraged by the outright lies contained in the letter by Benjamin Crump to Deputy Assistant
    Attorney General Roy Austin dated April 2, 2012. I encourage the Justice Department to investigate and
    document that no such meeting or communication occurred. I have been encouraging those spreading
    the irresponsible rhetoric to stop and allow State Attorney Angela Corey to complete her work. Another
    falsehood distributed to the media does nothing to forward that process. "

    PDF
     
  13. Reader

    Reader New Member

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    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sanford_Police_Department_(Florida)

    Press reports have indicated a number of cases of misconduct by officers of the Sanford Police Department.

    >>On 16 July 2005, two parking lot security guards, one the son of a Sanford Police Department veteran and the other a volunteer for the department, shot a black teen, Travares McGill, in the back, killing him. They claimed self-defense, and the case was dismissed in court.[7][8]

    >>In 2010, a Florida Department of Law Enforcement report noted that Sanford police Officer Christopher McClendon had misused his official position by helping a car dealer recover cars from delinquent customers in exchange for having his own car payments forgiven.[9]

    >>In February 2010, press reports indicated one officer was fired, and another, Ned Golden, Jr,, was suspended for two weeks[10] after sending sexist and racist text messages on a department computer.[11]

    >>In January, 2011, the same Officer Golden was assigned to retraining after approaching a car of people at a gas station with a drawn gun. Officer Golden grabbed the car when it pulled away. He then claimed the driver of the car tried to kill him by driving away while he held onto the car.[12] No charges were filed in the case. In August 2011, after an investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Golden was fired. The state report recommended he be charged with filing a false police report, official misconduct and assault with a deadly weapon. [13] No charges were filed by the State Attorney's Office.[14]

    Officer Golden is the son of the head of the local police union.[11]

    >>In that same month, the chief of the department, Bran Tooley took an early retirement as a result of an incident involving one of his officer’s sons. Justin Collison was involved in a fistfight caught on video tape. Press reports indicate Collison, the son of a police lieutenant, may have received preferential treatment by the Sanford Police Department.[15]

     
  14. LambChop

    LambChop Former Member

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    And they expect this interim chief to clean this up in three months????? jmo
     
  15. Just K

    Just K New Member

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    Bias, Bigotry, and Racism are alive and kicking in every walk of life. It is insidious and cruel...not to mention...completely despicable.
     
  16. vlpate

    vlpate Sleuther with a porpoise

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    Crump admits this was a lie to manipulate the DOJ into expediting GZ's arrest. He further states he never saw an affidavit from Serino. If there was an affidavit by Serino, he would have had it on ABC immediately. JMO

    "Mr. Wolfinger issued a statement today accusing you directly of lying. It reads in part. Let me read it to our viewers. "I am outraged by the outright lies contained in the letter by Benjamin Crump. No such meeting or communication occurred. I have been encouraging those spreading the irresponsible rhetoric to stop and allow state attorney Angela Corey to complete her work." That's a direct quote.

    He is flat out calling you, Mr. Crump, a liar. We would love to get your response.

    BENJAMIN CRUMP, ATTORNEY FOR FAMILY OF TRAYVON MARTIN: Yes. On behalf of the family, we're outraged at his, for whatever reason, refusal to arrest George Zimmerman for killing their son.

    And it took our letter to finally get him to comment on why George Zimmerman has not been arrested. We hear all these things from the media. We don't get anything from his office or the police department.

    So these folks have been left out in the cold when it's them who should get all the information about why Mr. Zimmerman is still free for killing their son. And we will keep writing letters and asking people to investigate anything that is suspicious in this death because they deserve answers. This family only wants answers.

    BLITZER: Mr. Crump, have you seen the affidavit that your letter hinges upon? In other words, can you prove your claim?

    CRUMP: No."
    CNN Link
     
  17. Dr.Fessel

    Dr.Fessel New Member

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    He does no such thing. Where does he say he lied about anything?
     
  18. Just K

    Just K New Member

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    This thread is about the long history of questionable LE behavior in Sanford, correct?
     
  19. Karmady

    Karmady Former Member

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    Here's what I think happened. Serino probably did send some kind of affidavit or statement to the prosecutor. if he did, it was an affidavit that would be used by the prosecutor's office, possibly among other things, to determine whether George would be arrested. The prosecutor's office looked at it and said, no, that's not enough.

    Crump, being intimately familiar with the process and maybe having some actual knowledge of what happened in this case, painted that SOP as something unusual, nefarious and under-handed when, in fact, it was no such thing. It would not surprise me at all if Serino gave the prosecutor's office his "best shot" at an affidavit justifying an arrest. It just wasn't good enough to justify an immediate arrest under the circumstances with immunity hanging over their heads. And, for the record, we'd have exactly the same commentary if Serino hadn't given any statement or affidavit at all to the prosecutor, or had submitted one saying George should be released . . ."heads should roll" and just more "evidence of bias." jmo
     
  20. Dr.Fessel

    Dr.Fessel New Member

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    I wonder how long this investigation will take?
     
  21. Reader

    Reader New Member

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    And I wonder how far back it will go into their records?

    GZ and his father by trying to cover up and lie about what he did have certainly opened a can of worms....this DOJ investigation will blow the lid off Sanford PD.

    IMO
     
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