COPS HABITUALLY ABUSE DATABASES TO ACCESS CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION REGARDING INNOCENT CITIZENS
An examination of the record clearly proves that the cops' outrage over JUSTICEFILES.ORG is completely unjustified. As stated previously, there is not a single documented instance of any of the information contained on Justicefiles.org being misused in any manner whatsoever. On the other hand, the cops themselves regularly misuse tax-funded government databases to illegally obtain private information pertaining to innocent citizens. Among other nefarious pursuits, the cops use this information to harass, stalk, intimidate, threaten, provide assistance to mobsters, facilitate murders, satisfy their sexual fetishes, and pursue other illicit ends. The vigilant members of Copwatch.com, roused to righteous anger by the hypocrisy of the cops and the one-sided, misleading media coverage of Justicefiles.org, submitted the following news stories within the last month:
"Officer Paul Alekna, who already was serving a 90-day suspension for allegedly making lewd comments to a 14-year-old girl while working an off-duty job, told Internal Affairs investigators that he asked for the check last month on LEADS, a police database." ***
"Alekna [a married man with two children] was charged with conduct unbecoming an officer after the mother of a Fairlawn teen filed a complaint, saying he'd made several inappropriate comments to her daughter while he was working security at the John S. Knight Center on New Year's Eve. The woman said Alekna made a lewd remark about Mardis Gras beads and then asked her daughter if she wanted to wrestle." ***
"Alekna had been disciplined previously for making inappropriate comments to a juror about a criminal case and for having numerous accidents in his police cruiser, including one in which he backed into a pedestrian standing at a pay phone. He also faced a sexual harassment claim from a civilian employee of the police department." ***
"Disciplinary action is currently pending against the officer who ran the check for Alekna. The officer told investigators that he felt ``betrayed'' by Alekna and would not have run the check if he had known it was for personal reasons."
"Other officers have previously been disciplined for doing improper LEADS checks. Chief Michael Matulavich said yesterday that this is an offense the department takes seriously." [Search for "Paul Alekna", with a date-range of 05/31/2001 - 05/31/2002, with cookies activated]
POLICE CHIEF RESIGNS AFTER BEING ACCUSED OF MISUSING DATABASE
"[Police Chief] Cader, who had been a target of criticism for much of his four-year tenure over such matters as police spending, faced potential legal trouble when allegations publicly surfaced that he misused a police database for personal searches. But it was the allegation that he voted illegally in a November special tax election that resulted in two misdemeanor charges being filed against him. Cader did not return phone calls for this story."
COP SUSPECTED OF USING DATABASE TO PLAN MURDER OF EX-WIFE
"A State Police detective whose estranged wife was shot dead at the Potter Park Zoo admitted using police databases such as the Law Enforcement Information Network (LEIN) to check on his wife and her acquaintances, according to Lansing police search warrant requests."
"State Police Detective Sgt. Artis White is not suspected of shooting Bernita White, 41, on June 23 as she walked with the couple's 5-year-old daughter. But Lansing Police Detective Jon Priebe, who is investigating the case, alleged the requests [show] that 'Artis White had a motive and may have contracted someone to kill his wife.' ***
"Priebe wrote that White admitted hiring a private investigator to follow his wife and 'that he had been inappropriately using police facilities such as Law Enforcement Information Network records to check on his wife and persons she was seeing.' ***
"Although White is not suspected of pulling the trigger, Lansing police said, they believe he may know who shot his wife a month after she filed for divorce.
"Priebe's search warrant requests seek permission to check White's computer and the computer of a Holt woman with whom he was allegedly having an affair.
"'Evidence pertaining to the homicide of Bernita White may reasonably be present in the computer to be searched and/ or same may lead to other information identifying the person who shot Bernita White,' Priebe wrote." ***
The warrants quote Bernita White's mother, 67-year-old Barbara Sims of Detroit, as saying "Artis had her killed," when a trooper informed her of her daughter's death.
"The officer in that incident found the woman's address by using the computer in his cruiser, Neisser said.
"In the first ruling of its kind in the nation, the [New Jersey Supreme Court] fashioned a practical solution. The database of motor vehicle information now readily accessed by police computers -- called mobile data terminals or MDTs -- must be divided into two parts, under the court order.
"The first part, which can be accessed for any reason, will tell police the status of the car's registration and the owner's driver's license. Police can tap into a second level of information containing the car owner's name, address, criminal history, and other personal data only if the first computer check turns up a violation, such a stolen or unregistered car. ***
"Although the decision was unanimous, one justice suggested that the ruling leaves the technological door open to unauthorized uses.
"Justice Gary Stein concurred with the opinion, but in a separate opinion he said the justices should have fashioned a bolder and simpler solution: Outlaw any random searches of personal information contained in the motor vehicle database. He suggested that the two-part information system was too vulnerable to abuse.
"'Regrettably, the Court undermines its own conclusion and dilutes the usefulness and clarity of its opinion when it permits police officers . . . to continue to use [squad-car-mounted mobile data terminals] to make random, suspicionless look-ups of motorists' personal information,' Stein wrote." [Search the New Jersey "Record" for "Eric Neisser", with a date-range of 12/11/1998 - 12/14/1998, with cookies activated]
"In a 2-1 vote, the panel said that the Atherton Police Department was right in firing Mr. Ponce in 1998 for numerous violations of department policy including alleged misuse of the California Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (CLETS). Mr. Ponce was also accused of violating a restraining order and destroying personal property in a case involving his ex-girlfriend.
"The CLETS system, administered by the California Department of Justice, is a database containing information ranging from driving records to criminal records. Use of the system is highly restricted and limited by law to matters of public safety. ***
"The one dissenting vote was cast by Kenneth Well, the panel member chosen by the police officers union. In a letter written to another panel member, Mr. Wells said he actually agreed with the panel's findings on Mr. Ponce, but he voted no to the firing because he did not feel that Police Chief Steve Cader acted in a fair and impartial manner.
"'Yes I agree to the finding that Officer Ponce did violate the rules,' he wrote, 'but so did the Chief of Police.'
"Following the firing, Mr. Ponce accused Chief Cader of also misusing the CLETS system. Chief Cader has denied the allegations, and the district attorney is investigating them.
"The investigator, a 31-year-old veteran of three years with the attorney general's office, was close friends with Maria Emeterio, who resigned from the office in June following her arrest on federal charges of selling classified FBI information to private detective Mike Levin.
"Emeterio, 34, was charged with giving Levin top-secret records from the FBI's National Crime Information Center (NCIC), a computerized criminal database used by law enforcement agencies across the country. Levin then sold the records to his criminal clients.
"Following her arrest, state agents with the Nevada Division of Investigations launched a probe into Emeterio's ties to Levin to determine whether others at the attorney general's office were involved in the theft of the FBI documents.
"The FBI in New York has been conducting a separate investigation, which has resulted in the arrests of 10 people, including Levin and James J. Hill, a Las Vegas FBI security analyst who also has been charged with selling Levin confidential information.
"Levin, a former FBI agent Las Vegas, has pleaded guilty to buying the stolen FBI documents and is cooperating with federal authorities. ***
"'[The investigator] a sworn duty to uphold as a police officer,' Hafen said. 'She knew this information was being [illegally] given out.' ***
"Mary Ellen Weeks, a veteran Municipal Court intake services officer, was charged in June by the FBI with selling confidential NCIC records to Levin. She is on administrative leave.
"Hill, a 10-year veteran of the FBI office in Las Vegas, reportedly is seeking a deal to cooperate with FBI agents in New York, where he remains behind bars on no bail.
"He was said to have had access to national security and electronic surveillance information, as well as confidential informant and witness data stored in the FBI's computer system.
"Levin has told FBI agents that he sold the information he received from Hill, Emeterio and Weeks to criminal targets for $100,000."
INDIANA POLICE DEPARTMENT'S ACCESS TO FBI DATABASE REVOKED DUE TO ABUSE
"A meeting that is scheduled between the Highland, Ind., Police Department and the state police committee in charge of overseeing access to the FBI's criminal database will determine whether a suspension of the department's privileges in place since September will become permanent."
"The revocation of Highland's access to the Indiana Data and Communications System (IDACS), the state's portal into the National Crime Information Center, is believed to be the first such suspension in at least a decade."
COPS WANT TO CREATE DATABASE TO TRACK EVERYONE WHO BOTHERS THEM
"Police say most large departments keep information on people who have not been arrested but are, because of their actions, considered especially dangerous to police. Now, officers want a statewide database that would essentially flag a person's driver's license or vehicle registration if the person threatened police - regardless of whether the person had ever been arrested, charged or convicted of such a threat."
POLITICAL CANDIDATES VETTED BY POLICE CHIEF? NO WORRIES- DATABASE ABUSE IS NOT A CRIME, AS LONG AS YOU'RE A COP!
"Eastpointe's city attorney is looking into allegations the police chief and city manager violated state law by using the Law Enforcement Information Network (LEIN) to check the backgrounds of candidates for an ethics committee. Mayor Frank Accavitti ordered the investigation this week after it was revealed that City Manager D. Wayne O'Neal and Police Chief Thomas Danbert may have violated state regulations governing LEIN use by checking backgrounds of eight people considered for a volunteer committee created in June by the city council. First-time LEIN misuse is not a crime."
POLICE LIEUTENANT CHARGED WITH ABUSING DATABASE TO INFLUENCE ELECTIONS
"A Charles County sheriff's lieutenant facing criminal charges for misusing the sheriff's computer system on behalf of local Democrats has been charged by sheriff's officials with 102 violations of departmental rules, according to court documents filed Monday in Charles County Circuit Court."
"Investigator Brightwell told the inquiry the woman had in the previous years been receiving unwanted attention from the businessman and had on a number of occasions moved address and changed her phone number. This afternoon Senior Police Constable Robert Kelvin Crawford admitted to providing the woman's personal details. Despite twice denying in previous CJC interviews to handing over the silent number, Constable Crawford changed his evidence today.
FINDING: POLICE DATABASES COMMONLY ACCESSED FOR INAPPROPRIATE AND UNLAWFUL PURPOSES
"The misuse of the Queensland Police Database has concerned the [Criminal Justice Commission] for more than two years. Only last year it reported police databases are commonly accessed for inappropriate and unlawful purposes. And in November it released a survey of the ethics of rookie officers between 1995 and 1998. It found 83 per cent of the surveyed rookies wouldn't report another officer doing a registration check to get the address of an attractive driver."
"But the CJC says the inquiry concerns far more serious breaches than that."
COP CHECKS ON "POTENTIAL GIRLFRIENDS": 6,900 SEARCHES OF DATABASE IN TWO MONTHS
"…an inquiry has heard that a North Queensland constable used the police database to check on potential girlfriends. The State's Criminal Justice Commission heard that the officer made at least 300 suspect checks on the police computer just months after leaving the Police Academy. *** In just over two months the then 20-year old performed 6,900 searches on the police database. Counsel assisting the [Criminal Justice Commission], Ralph Devlin, said of those at least 300 have been narrowed down to being not connected at all with official duties."
Do you know of any other similar incidents of database abuse? If so, we'd love to hear from you. Please submit your stories HERE.
Help copwatch fight police brutality. Bad cops must be prosecuted. Police corruption is a major problem - copwatch will root it out. Dirty cops threaten the criminal justice system. Police misconduct is an epidemic. Police abuse innocent citizens all too often. Police harassment is a frequent occurrence. The blue wall of silence protects bad cops, and police culture must be reformed. Deviant cops must be fired. Police deviance cannot be tolerated. Last year saw a bad cop arrested for rape, a dirty cop charged with extortion, police corruption involving drug distribution, a criminal cop jailed for brutality, a disgraced police chief sentenced for domestic abuse, a convicted sheriff guilty of theft, moonlighting police disciplined for misconduct, convicted cops fired for sexual assault, a guilty cop suspended for harassment, a discredited cop charged with perjury, and a law enforcement officer suspended from duty for being on the take. Police corruption is common across the country. Such activities are a disgrace to the badge, and dishonor the uniform, so the offending cop was forced to turn in his badge. Subsequent reports revealed a state patrol officer investigated for arson, a highway patrol officer indicted for fraud, a state trooper jailed for assault, a top cop ousted for brandishing his weapon, a Police Sgt. fired for bribery, (while another Police Sergeant quit the force), a Police Lt. pressured to resign (the Lieutenant is accused of murder), child-molesting police, and a Police Commander crashed his squad car in a high speed pursuit. The police department engaged in a coverup to hide evidence of misconduct, refusing to release relevant public records and public documents, despite the open records law and the submission of a public disclosure request. Finally, Serpico breaks ranks. As the bad cops close ranks, good police put their lives on the line, while an overzealous county mounty (or mountie) is an embarrassment to the force. An ex-cop turns in his gun. Learn how to prevent police brutality. The Police Benevolent Fund manufactures support for the police department - a department under fire amid accusations of misconduct. The Police Guild negotiates a new contract for its members. The Police Union demands raise in overtime pay. Funds are increased with the seizure of drug money. Forfeiture proceedings are instituted, and the police seize the property of alleged drug dealers, including cars, homes, planes, real estate, guns, and drugs. At the same time, police raise funds for charity and participate in public service programs. Community policing resulted in ride-along programs for local citizens, and increased participation in police Explorer programs. But the broken-window, zero-tolerance program is difficult to evaluate. A gun-buyback program was successful, with cops collecting a variety of firearms, including assault rifles, handguns, Saturday night specials, automatic weapons, shotguns, tec-9, glocks, taurus, S&W, .45 caliber, .44 caliber, .357 caliber, 9mm, all military style. The guns were auctioned off or melted down. BATF agents were investigating the sale of handguns. The FBI conducted a background check, so citizens interested in the militia movement attended gun shows, where they were able to purchase handguns from vendors. Issuance of a concealed weapons permit was allowed, and this gun permit allowed the man to use his handgun for concealed carry in a shoulder holster. The national law enforcement memorial fund is a beautiful tribute to the boys in blue who have made the ultimate sacrifice. To serve and protect is their honorable motto. Duty and honor is another. The LAPD scandal tarnishes public perception of police officers. Police brutality is a major issue in minority neighborhoods. Neighborhood watch programs were quite effective in reducing crime statistics and increasing neighborhood safety. Cops shoot suspect, and then the cops shoot suspect again. The suspect is wounded, and then the suspect dies in police custody. This pattern is called custody death syndrome. Positional asphyxiation is often blamed for the death of prisoners, after the prisoners are pepper-sprayed, maced, beaten, handcuffed, and thrown in the back of a police car. Suicide by cop is another term that is becoming popular, as police seek to blame the victim and excuse their unprofessional behavior. These police cover-ups are ineffective, and police brutality is found to be the cause of death. Cops and robbers is a nice game, but when the cops kill or fatally wound a suspected robber, the circumstances are often suspicious. Many cops are drug abusers, some police are drug addicts, many officers are alcoholics. Cops on steroids often exhibit roid rage. Police brutality and racial profiling are two issues that often arise at major metropolitan police departments. Bill Sheehan created a website revealing the social security numbers, home addresses, and home telephone numbers of Kirkland Police Department (KPD) officers. SPD info was scheduled to go live on April 1st. Civil rights abuses probed. Officer convicted of drunk driving. Man killed in police raid. At the N30 demonstrations, cops without nametags beat nonviolent protestors without provocation. The direct action network, DAN for short, was created in response. During the Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday celebrations in Seattle, a roving gang of black thugs beat Kris Kime to death as he was attempting to assist an injured women, and the police stood by and did nothing. This murder is on the hands of Mayor Paul Schell, who refuses to prosecute the perpetrators for hate crimes. Some people have argued that a database of bad cops should be developed. Many authoritative academic studies examine the psychological profile of police officers. There are many deviant police officers. Some police departments foster a culture of police deviance. Where is a free punk music concert? Kids like to thrash on their skateboard. Snowboarding, or boarding, is enjoyed by straightedge skinheads. RATM is phat. The swat team, equipped with military gear, broke down the door and swarmed into the apartment with guns drawn. Dynamic entry police raids are dangerous to citizens. Police brutality is a growing problem.