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Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #518)
Drug War Issues

There's some funny accounting in some Mississippi anti-drug task forces, a pot-peddling Houston cop is in hot water, there's a bunch of dope missing from the Boston police evidence room, and crooked cops are headed for prison in Chicago, Nashville, and New Haven. Let's get to it:

In Chicago, three former Chicago police officers were sentenced to prison last week for stealing drugs from dealers and then reselling them. Former officer Eural Black got 40 years, Broderick Jones got 25 years, and Darek Haynes got 19 years. The three went down in a joint 2005 investigation by the FBI and Chicago police into cops working with drug dealers. Five dealers were also arrested. The dealers would tip off Jones to where he and his comrades could steal drugs, mainly cocaine and marijuana, and the cops would then raid the place, but instead of arresting the dealers, they resold their wares.

In New Haven, Connecticut, a former New Haven police detective was sentenced to prison Monday for falsifying evidence and stealing money during drug investigations. Former detective Jose Silva had pleaded guilty three months ago to one count of deprivation of individual rights for what prosecutors called his minor role in wrongdoing uncovered during a joint state-federal probe of the department. That probe resulted in the arrest of the department's head narcotics officer and the months-long disbanding of the drug squad. Silva confessed to standing by while another detective moved seized drugs during a raid to bolster the case against a suspect and to splitting with his partner $1,000 confiscated during a drug raid. He got 90 days.

In Nashville, a former Nashville police officer was sentenced to 12 years in prison last Friday for his role in a plot to rip off drug dealers. Former officer Ernest Cecil got 12 years in federal prison for his role in the scheme where the nephew of one of the cops helped them pinpoint and rob a cocaine dealer, but disguised it as a legitimate law enforcement operation. The nephew then peddled the cocaine, and the crooked cops pocketed $70,000.

In Houston, a a Houston police officer was arrested Wednesday for delivery of between 5 and 50 pounds of marijuana, a second degree felony. Officer Traci Tennarse, 29, is a Class B officer who works in an administrative capacity in the department Identification Division where she checks fingerprints of all suspects brought to the county jail. She has been relieved of duty with pay, but at last report was being held in the very jail where she checked prints.

In Boston, some 700 bags of drug evidence have gone missing at the Boston Police Department central drug depository, a 14-month investigation into missing evidence has found. Another 265 evidence bags had been tampered with, in some cases with drug evidence replaced by aspirin tablets. Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis announced last Friday that the most likely culprit is a police officer because only police are allowed into the depository. Boston police, Suffolk County prosecutors, and the FBI have launched a joint investigation. The 12 officers who worked at the depository were removed last October. Among the missing drugs are cocaine, heroin, Oxycontin, and marijuana.

In Jackson, Mississippi, at least three of the state's multi-jurisdictional anti-drug task forces are being investigated over suspicious payment vouchers for drug buys and time sheets that appeared to show officers in two places at the same time. The irregularities appeared during routine audits in 2006 and have resulted in at least one task force, North Central, losing its state-disbursed federal funding for the last two years. Officials from the South Central Narcotics Task Force and the Tri-County Narcotics Task force are appealing decisions to deny them funding as well. The state Department of Public Safety has requested that the US Justice Department investigate.

Permission to Reprint: This content is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Content of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.


Anonymous (not verified)

Cops RoidRage is killing double fold, sweeping trend across the Nation !
High rate of suicide and domestic violence, strokes, heart attacks,
and increased casualties / innocent "suspects"...

This needs full fledge on going coverage, Ron Dellum, mayor of Oakland, passed Random Drug Testing for OPD last July !

Idriss Stelley Foundation

Fri, 01/11/2008 - 2:30pm Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

IF police are to be held to a higher standard (and many people, including active and retired police offficers, agree that this is so), then why aren't the police officers randomly drug-tested on a regular basis, as a condition of employment? I know that some cities do test the officers in their employment, however, I believe that such testing should be mandatory, random, and not subject to any collective bargaining agreement limits, for ALL law enforcement officers. In my discussions with both active and retired law enforcement officers, my eyes have been opened to the rampant, blatant, obvious, wide-open corruption that occurs in many hundreds of law enforcement agencies across the country. I had a discussion with a retired LEO who told me about how they would regularly pull over drug dealers and other illegals, take all the money, drugs, and guns, and then send the criminals on their way. This was a regular occurence, and the officers involved knew that they would never, could never be prosecuted for their crimes and theft. A personal friend of mine was at work when his 15 year-old son was victimized by 2 home-invasion robbers. He was suspicious when they came to the door claiming to be from the gas company, so he put a loaded .380 automatic in his belt. When he cracked the door, they slammed it open and knocked him to the floor. While lying on the floor, he pulled the gun from his belt, shot the 1st robber 3 times (groin, chest and neck), then he shot the other robber twice, once in the stomach and once in the chest. The 1st robber bled out and died right there on the kitchen floor, the 2nd robber stumbled out to the driveway, where he died about 15 minutes later. The police found a brown paper bag that these robbers had with them. In the bag was a roll of duct tape, a gun, and a stack of photos. The police refused to divulge what was on the photos. When the police came, the detective in charge told my friend that he could open his gun safe of his own free will, or he could force them to get a warrant, in which case they would take whatever they found in the safe. He had done nothing wrong, so he opened his safe. The police took over 15 firearms, some of which were irreplaceable WWII guns. The detective in charge gave my friend his card, and said, "get in touch with me and we'll get this atraightened out". My best friend called this detective about 20 times over a period of about six months. He got 6 different stories about where his guns were, what his legal status was, how he could get his lawful property back from the Columbus, Ohio police department, and what his son's legal status was. They made veiled threats stating that if he pursued it further, they would charge his sone with murder at worst, or manslaughter at best, even though the evidence was overwhelming in his favor. It was very obvious what had occurred there, beyond any shadow of a doubt. The bottom line is that my friend had his lawful property STOLEN from him by the Columbus, Ohio police department, and there's nothing he can do about it. Maybe if he was wealthy, and could afford a high-priced attorney to sue the city, it's just slightly possible that he could get his property back. Why should the police be allowed to steal at will? It happens every day. And to anyone reading this story who doubts that it's true, I only hope that it never happens to you. You can believe that it's true, and that's just the tip of the iceberg. There should be some way that the citizens could peacefully hold the corrupt police accountable for their actions. There are literally thousands of corrupt police officers on our streets, and we have no legal recourse against them. I'm sure that the detective and his cronies are enjoying my friend's collection at this very minute. It makes me physically ill to know that these things happen all the time.

Fri, 01/11/2008 - 4:44pm Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

I wish someone would do a story on the number of vice cops that use their position and authority inappropriately. There is a vice detective in Houston, Texas that has a drug problem and regularly uses the prostitutes he arrests. Unfortunately I cant post it and no one will report on it, but his initials are TS. I hope that someone who can actually report him comes forward to give a statement before this man hurts some else Twenty # years on the squad doesnt excuse abuse and betrayal of public trust.

Fri, 03/06/2009 - 3:38am Permalink

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