WBEZ | Police http://www.wbez.org/tags/police Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Ferguson Hires A New City Manager, Looking Toward A New Era http://www.wbez.org/news/ferguson-hires-new-city-manager-looking-toward-new-era-113839 <p><p>Eight months after Ferguson&#39;s city manager resigned in the wake of a scathing Justice Department report, which found recurrent problems in the city&#39;s legal system, Ferguson officials have named a replacement.</p><p>De&#39;Carlon Seewood will replace John Shaw,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/03/10/392200035/ferguson-mo-city-manager-out-amid-shakeup">who stepped down in March</a>&nbsp;after&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/03/04/390713944/ferguson-report-justice-dept-says-wilson-won-t-face-civil-rights-charge">a federal investigation found</a>&nbsp;that the Ferguson Police Department&#39;s practices &quot;are shaped by the City&#39;s focus on revenue rather than by public safety needs.&quot;</p><p>From St. Louis Public Radio, Wayne Pratt reports:</p><blockquote><div><p><em>&quot;De&#39;Carlon Seewood is a familiar face at Ferguson City Hall. He was assistant city manager for six years and most recently held a similar position in a Chicago suburb.</em></p><p><em>&quot;He replaces former city manager John Shaw, who resigned in March, shortly after a federal report highlighted racial profiling among Ferguson police and how the municipal court seemed to be driven by profit.</em></p><p><em>&quot;Those findings followed last year&#39;s shooting death of Michael Brown by a police officer. In a statement released by the city, Seewood says he wants to bridge the gap for everyone who wants Ferguson to succeed.&quot;</em></p></div></blockquote><p>The Justice Department inquiry also uncovered racist emails that had been sent between officials, forcing the exit of the city&#39;s clerk and two police officers.</p><p>After that much-anticipated report came out in March, Ferguson Mayor James Knowles&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/03/13/392835913/ferguson-mayor-ferguson-mayor-slams-hostile-language-from-eric-holder">said he would be staying in his job</a>&nbsp;leading the city.</p><p>Calling Seewood the right person for the job, Knowles said Tuesday, &quot;The choice wasn&#39;t easy, but we took into consideration several factors which included experience, fiscal accountability and a commitment to community engagement.&quot;</p><p>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/11/18/456513979/ferguson-hires-a-new-city-manager" target="_blank"><em>via NPR</em></a></p></p> Wed, 18 Nov 2015 13:54:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/ferguson-hires-new-city-manager-looking-toward-new-era-113839 Detective: 'Hero' cop sought hit-man to cover up thefts http://www.wbez.org/news/detective-hero-cop-sought-hit-man-cover-thefts-113662 <p><p>FOX LAKE -- Months before an Illinois police officer staged his suicide to make it seem like he died in the line of duty, subjecting his community to an expensive and fruitless manhunt, he apparently sought a hit man to kill a village administrator he feared would expose him as a thief, a detective told The Associated Press on Thursday.</p><p>Det. Chris Covelli said Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz sent a&nbsp;text&nbsp;in April asking a woman to set up a meeting with a &quot;high-ranking gang member to put a hit on the village manager.&quot;</p><p>Gliniewicz sent another message in May saying he had thought of &quot;planting things,&quot; which made more sense after investigators found small packages of cocaine in Gliniewicz&#39;s desk after he died, Covelli said.</p><p>The drugs were &quot;not linked to any case that we could find,&quot; raising the possibility that the lieutenant sought to frame the manager, Anne Marrin, as a drug criminal before she could expose him as an embezzler, the detective said.</p><p>&quot;We never found any explanation why those drugs were in his desk at the police station,&quot; Covelli said.</p><p>Gliniewicz sent the&nbsp;texts&nbsp;after Marrin, the village&#39;s first professional administrator, began auditing Fox Lake&#39;s finances, including the Police Explorers program that authorities now say the lieutenant had been stealing from for seven years.</p><p>Marrin told reporters Thursday that she believed all her dealings with Gliniewicz were cordial and never had any sense that he was angry with her. She said she didn&#39;t learn about the plots against her until after Gliniewicz&#39;s death.</p><p>&quot;It&#39;s very unsettling. My concern is my family. It&#39;s quite unbelievable and almost surreal,&quot; she said, adding that police have assured her that she is safe.</p><p>Often called &quot;G.I. Joe,&quot; Gliniewicz was a well-known figure in the bedroom community of 10,000 people 50 miles north of&nbsp;Chicago. His death on Sept. 1, moments after he radioed that he was chasing three suspicious men, prompted an intense manhunt involving hundreds of officers, and raised fears of cop-killers on the loose.</p><p>Two months later, authorities announced that he, in fact, killed himself to cover up his theft of thousands of dollars from a youth program. Now authorities also are investigating his wife, Melodie, and son D.J., an official said Thursday.</p><p>Melodie Gliniewicz helped her husband run the Fox Lake Police Explorer Post, which put young people interested in law enforcement careers through sophisticated training exercises. In a newspaper interview weeks ago, D.J. Gliniewicz, an Army soldier in his 20s, angrily dismissed suggestions that his father took his own life.</p><p>The official, who was briefed on the investigation, spoke with the AP on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the investigation publicly.</p><p>A second official who was briefed on the investigation told the AP that Melodie and D.J. Gliniewicz were recipients of a separate set of incriminating&nbsp;text&nbsp;messages from the lieutenant that investigators released Wednesday when they announced the staged suicide.</p><p>The official also spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the investigation publicly.</p><p>The official said Melodie Gliniewicz was the person identified as &quot;Individual #1&quot; in the messages released Wednesday, who at one point suggests in a message that she and Joseph Gliniewicz may &quot;need to hide the funds somehow.&quot;</p><p>The official said D.J. Gliniewicz was &quot;Individual #2,&quot; whom the officer appears to scold for spending money on personal items. In another message, the officer tells Individual #2 that he has thought through many scenarios involving Marrin, &quot;from planting things to the volo bog,&quot; a remote swamp in the area.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_626201901466_0.jpg" style="height: 221px; width: 270px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; float: right;" title="This undated photo provided by the Lake County Sheriff's Office shows Joseph A. Battaglia, a retired Chicago police officer who was arrested and charged with threatening investigators in the case of slain Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz. Battaglia is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015, in Waukegan, Ill., where a judge is expected to ask Battaglia if he's hired an attorney. At an initial hearing, he was told he doesn't qualify for a public defender. (Lake County Sheriff's Office via AP)" /></p><p>Authorities have refused to officially identify anyone beyond the lieutenant who is suspected in any crimes. They also declined to identify the woman Gliniewicz&nbsp;texted about the gang hit in April, other than to say she is not in law enforcement.</p><p>The officer&#39;s wife and four children issued a brief statement Wednesday through their lawyers, saying they were grieving. It did not mention suicide or thefts. The attorneys, Henry Tonigan, and Andrew Kelleher, didn&#39;t respond to voicemail and email messages sent Thursday.</p><p>Despite a reputation as a respected youth mentor, Gliniewicz appears to have had a troubled on-the-job history, ranging from numerous suspensions to sexual harassment allegations to complaints that he intimidated an emergency dispatcher with guns, according to personnel records released late Thursday by the Village of Fox Lake. Gliniewicz also had problems off the job, including one incident when a sheriff&#39;s deputy found him passed out in his truck and took him home, only to have Gliniewicz report his truck stolen the next day, according to documents in the file.</p><p>Gliniewicz&#39;s file contained numerous commendations for good work early in his career with the department, which began in 1985. But in just a few years, he was racking up reprimands and suspensions for lying about being sick and giving motorists the wrong court dates on their traffic citations.</p><p>In 2003, a dispatcher complained Gliniewicz tried to intimidate her by bringing guns into the radio room after the two had a disagreement during which Gliniewicz allegedly told her he could put three bullets in her chest if she didn&#39;t stop acting foolishly. A couple weeks later, the chief eliminated Gliniewicz&#39;s job as commander of support services because of his &quot;problems with the communications division.&quot;</p><p>But there is no evidence Gliniewicz got in serious trouble, and in 2006, he was promoted to lieutenant in control of the patrol division.</p><p>A letter in the file dated Feb. 1, 2009, addressed to then-Mayor Cynthia Irwin and signed only by &quot;Anonymous Members of the Fox Lake Police Department&quot; outlined complaints about Gliniewicz that included: allegations of an inappropriate relationship with a subordinate officer, complaints from bouncers at local bars for being drunk and belligerent, and allegations he allowed members of the youth program unsupervised access to the police department and to wear clothing labeled &quot;police,&quot; misidentifying themselves as officers.</p><p>It was not clear from the file whether any action was taken in response to the letter. The AP attempted to reach Irwin late Thursday for comment, but telephone messages were not immediately returned.</p><p>As the probe into Gliniewicz&#39;s death stretched on, suspicion grew that he had killed himself, but investigators publicly treated it as a homicide investigation until announcing Wednesday that he shot himself. The lieutenant fired first at his cellphone and ballistics vest, then inserted his handgun inside the vest and fired at his heart. According to the results of the investigation, he then fell forward as he was dying, scraping his face in what could have been an intentional effort to create the appearance of a struggle.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_187316145116.jpg" style="height: 312px; width: 300px; float: left; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px;" title="Mourners hold a sign during a vigil at Lakefront Park to honor the memory of Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015, in Fox Lake, Ill. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)" /></p><p>Lake County Major Crimes Task Force Commander George Filenko, who led the investigation, said the 30-year police veteran clearly intended to mislead investigators.</p><p>Recovered&nbsp;text&nbsp;messages and other records show Gliniewicz spent the money on mortgage payments, travel expenses, gym memberships, adult websites, withdrawing cash and making loans, Filenko said.</p><p>Marrin says she pressed Gliniewicz the day before his death to share an inventory of his program&#39;s assets. He responded the next morning, promising to deliver it that afternoon.</p><p>Instead, he killed himself.</p><p>Just why he tried to make it look like murder remains unclear. Filenko said he didn&#39;t know whether a suicide finding would prevent his family from receiving benefits.</p><p>The huge outpouring of grief in the 52-year-old officer&#39;s village has been replaced by a sense of betrayal. Many tributes have come down. Some signs praising &quot;G.I. Joe&quot; have been replaced, one by a poster labeling him &quot;G.I. Joke.&quot;</p></p> Thu, 05 Nov 2015 15:59:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/detective-hero-cop-sought-hit-man-cover-thefts-113662 More questions than answers in Fox Lake officer probe http://www.wbez.org/news/more-questions-answers-after-probe-finds-fox-lake-officer-shot-himself-113647 <p><div id="res454705700" previewtitle="George Filenko, commander of the Lake County Major Task Force, left, and Chris Covelli with the Lake County Sheriff's Department talk during a news conference at the Fox Lake Police Station, on Sept. 2, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill."><div data-crop-type="" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="George Filenko, commander of the Lake County Major Task Force, left, and Chris Covelli with the Lake County Sheriff's Department talk during a news conference at the Fox Lake Police Station, on Sept. 2, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill." src="http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2015/11/04/ap_39324084403_wide-400dd0805f30bc7bf343b4cd10f6bb40834b1fc6-s800-c85.jpg" style="height: 348px; width: 620px;" title="George Filenko, commander of the Lake County Major Task Force, left, and Chris Covelli with the Lake County Sheriff's Department talk during a news conference at the Fox Lake Police Station, on Sept. 2, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill (Michael Schmidt/AP)" /></div><div><p>He was considered a model police officer &mdash; a devoted family man and a mentor to the young people in the small Illinois town Fox Lake, near the Wisconsin state line.</p></div></div><p>Known to many as &quot;G.I. Joe&quot; in this tight-knit community of 10,000, the shooting death of Illinois police Lt. Charles Gliniewicz on the morning of Sept. 1 sparked a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/09/02/436919106/dragnet-expanded-for-3-suspects-in-killing-of-illinois-police-officer">massive manhunt involving hundreds of his fellow officers</a>&nbsp;from around the region.</p><p>Law enforcement officers from coast to coast came for&nbsp;<a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/lake-county-news-sun/news/ct-fox-lake-police-shooting-funeral-met-20150907-story.html">his funeral</a>&nbsp;to honor a man many believed to be a hero, who became the latest symbol in the &quot;Police Lives Matter&quot; counter movement to the &quot;Black Bives Matter&quot; protests against police misconduct and use of excessive force.</p><p>But in the end, he was nothing more than a crooked cop desperately trying to cover his tracks, according to Lake County, Ill., authorities who investigated his death and found a trail of malfeasance.</p><p>&quot;This extensive investigation has concluded with an overwhelming amount of evidence that Gliniewisz&#39;s death was a carefully staged suicide,&quot; says Lake County Major Crimes Task Force Commander George Filenko. &quot;This staged suicide was the end result of the extensive criminal acts that Gliniewicz had been committing.&quot;</p><p>Gliniewicz, a 52-year-old father of four, oversaw the&nbsp;<a href="http://foxlakepost300.homestead.com/" target="_blank">Fox Lake Police Department&#39;s Explorers program,</a>&nbsp;which engages youths interested in police work with various aspects of the field. The investigation found that the officer had been stealing and laundering money from the group for seven years, Filenko says.</p><p>&quot;Thousands of dollars were used by Gliniewicz for personal purchases, travel expenses, mortgage payments, personal gym memberships, adult websites&quot; and loans to friends, the task force commander says. &quot;Gliniewicz committed the ultimate betrayal to the citizens he served and to the law enforcement community. The facts of his actions proved he behaved in a manner completely contrary to the image he portrayed.</p><p>&quot;This is the first time as a law enforcement officer in my career that I&#39;ve felt ashamed by the acts of another police officer.&quot;</p><p><strong>A Pursuit, A Body, A Manhunt</strong></p><p>Filenko and Lake County authorities endured a lot of criticism in the past two months for the pace of the investigation, and for allowing area residents to believe there still may have been been armed cop-killers on the loose.</p><p>&quot;Our intention was never to mislead the public &mdash; we completely believed from day one that this was a homicide,&quot; Filenko says. &quot;We explored every possibility of what could have happened out there. In the first several weeks in this of this investigation, there was nothing ... leading us toward determining this as a suicide.&quot;</p><p>At about 8 a.m. the morning he died, Gliniewicz radioed in to report that he was pursuing three suspects, two white and one black, into a marshy area of the village, which is about 50 miles northwest of Chicago.</p><p>Officers arriving to provide backup found him shot and mortally wounded, and authorities launched a massive manhunt that included hundreds of officers, dogs and helicopters with infrared cameras. An analysis by the&nbsp;Daily Herald, a suburban Chicago newspaper, estimated the cost of the search in overtime, equipment and other expenses was more than $300,000.</p><div id="res454707285" previewtitle="The late Fox Lake Police officer Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz is displayed on a scoreboard during the first half of an NFL preseason football game between the Chicago Bears and the Cleveland Browns, on Sept. 3, 2015, in Chicago."><div data-crop-type="" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="The late Fox Lake Police officer Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz is displayed on a scoreboard during the first half of an NFL preseason football game between the Chicago Bears and the Cleveland Browns, on Sept. 3, 2015, in Chicago." src="http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2015/11/04/ap_703670657838_wide-002c37b4fcc5b62294cb34f63354b7876a04bcfa-s800-c85.jpg" style="height: 348px; width: 620px;" title="The late Fox Lake Police officer Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz is displayed on a scoreboard during the first half of an NFL preseason football game between the Chicago Bears and the Cleveland Browns, on Sept. 3, 2015, in Chicago. (Nam Y. Huh/AP)" /></div><div><div><p><strong>Two Close-Range Shots</strong></p></div></div></div><p>When several days of intense searching turned up nothing, speculation began to swirl. The first official indication that Gliniewicz&#39;s death might be a suicide came about 10 days after the shooting, when the coroner ruled the cause of death to be a catastrophic gunshot wound to the torso and refused to rule out that it might have been self-inflicted.</p><p>On Wednesday, the evidence laid out by Lake County coroner Thomas Rudd sounded like something scripted for a TV procedural like&nbsp;CSI&nbsp;or&nbsp;Law &amp; Order.</p><p>&quot;The first shot hit his right chest region, went through the phone, lodged into his bulletproof vest,&quot; said Rudd in describing an initial gunshot Gliniewicz fired at himself to throw off investigators.</p><p>&quot;The fatal, catastrophic gunshot wound,&quot; Rudd continues, &quot;was in the left upper chest. ... The gun had to be placed in such an angle that the gun was close to the chest; it went under the vest at a 40-degree angle, which was confirmed by the trajectory of the bullet.&quot;</p><p>That angle suggested that the shot was self-inflicted; other evidence included gunshot residue on the officer&#39;s hands.</p><p><strong>A Meticulous Crime Scene</strong></p><p>Other evidence at the scene initially appeared to indicate a struggle with one or more assailants &mdash; but as detectives looked closer, it indicated just the opposite.</p><p>Approaching the crime scene down a path through the grassy and overgrown marsh area, instigators first came upon Lt. Gliniewicz&#39;s pepper spray canister, then after several more yards, his baton. Later, they came upon the officer&#39;s eyeglasses and a first shell casing.</p><p>They found his body near a swamp; his weapon, buried in the weeds just two and a half feet away, wasn&#39;t discovered until almost two hours after the shooting.</p><p>&quot;This is pretty classical, if you look at any police policy, of a use of force kind of continuum,&quot; said Commander Filenko, who notes that Gliniewicz had expertise in crime scene investigations and staged mock crime scenes for Explorers to investigate. &quot;This is laid out to seem as if there was an ongoing type of struggle through the scene.&quot;</p><p>But other elements of the scene were amiss.</p><p>&quot;We didn&#39;t see any signs of trauma to the hands, or anything that would indicate that there was a struggle physically. The uniform was not disheveled.&quot;</p><p><strong>&#39;The Means To CRUCIFY ME&#39;</strong></p><p>But detectives still hadn&#39;t began to unravel the elaborate ruse until they began to dig more deeply into Gliniewicz&#39;s background and financial records &mdash; producing what investigators call a &quot;victimology.&quot; Evidence turned up in reviews of department documents, and most notably in incriminating text messages and communications that had been deleted from his phones, but recovered at the FBI lab in Quantico, Va.</p><p>Filenko says that text messages the officer exchanged with two other individuals who may have been in on the embezzlement indicated that Gliniewicz was concerned his malfeasance soon might have been discovered by a new village administrator conducting an internal audit of police department funds.</p><p><strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/detective-hero-cop-sought-hit-man-cover-thefts-113662" target="_blank">RELATED: Detective says &#39;hero&#39; cop sought hit man to cover up theft</a></strong></p><p>&quot;This village administrator hates me and the explorer program,&quot; Gliniewicz writes in a message, in which he and an &quot;Individual 2&quot; discuss missing Explorers funds and how they might cover their tracks. &quot;This situation right here would give her the means to CRUCIFY ME [if] it were discovered.&quot;</p><p>&quot;If she gets ahold of the old checking account, im pretty well f***ed,&quot; writes Gliniewicz in another text exchange, in which he and his alleged co-conspirator suggest harming the administrator or arresting her for drunk driving.</p><p>&quot;Trust me, ive thougit [sic] through MANY SCENARIOS from planting things to the Volo bog,&quot; he texted, referring to an area bog that would be difficult to search.</p><p>In communications the day before he died, Gliniewicz indicated he was supposed to meet with the administrator, who had demanded a complete accounting of the Explorer program&#39;s inventory and funds.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_183948287001.jpg" style="float: right; height: 450px; width: 300px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px;" title="Residents show their support outside the Fox Lake Police department as the manhunt continued for three suspects thought to be the murderers of Gliniewicz. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)" /></p><p><strong>&#39;He Was A Great Guy; I Looked Up To Him&#39;</strong></p><p>Assisted by the FBI, ATF and other state and federal authorities, the major crimes task force tied the financial and communications trails together with the evidence at the scene, and led the Major Crimes Task Force to believe Gliniewicz killed himself.</p><p>Fox Lake Village Administrator Anne Marrin noted in a statement that the high-ranking officer threatened her when she began to ask hard questions about the explorer program and its finances.</p><p>&quot;You&#39;ve heard today about a side of Lt. Gliniewicz that is in stark contrast to how he was previously portrayed in the community,&quot; she said in her statement at a news conference with Lake County investigators. &quot;The community is the real victim, so let&#39;s always carry that in mind.&quot;</p><p>Many in the Fox Lake community, where residents tied blue ribbons around trees and put up photos and posters of Gliniewicz to honor him, still cannot believe it. Tim Pederson, a 22-year-old who was in the explorers group under Gliniewicz,&nbsp;<a href="http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_OFFICER_SHOT_MANHUNT_ILOL-?SITE=AP&amp;SECTION=HOME&amp;TEMPLATE=DEFAULT" target="_blank">told The Associated Press that he was really upset by the news</a>.</p><p>&quot;He was a great guy; I looked up to him,&quot; said Pederson, who now works as a corrections officer. &quot;It really opens your eyes.&quot;</p><p>A neighbor of the Gliniewicz family, 79-year-old Leroy Marre of Antioch, told theChicago Tribune&nbsp;that<a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/lake-county-news-sun/news/ct-fox-lake-cop-suicide-20151104-story.html" target="_blank">&nbsp;the news of the late officer&#39;s suicide left him in shock</a>.</p><p>&quot;What a surprise, from hero to criminal,&quot; he said.</p><p>Late Wednesday, through their attorneys, survivors of the officer released a statement: &quot;Today has been another day of deep sorrow for the Gliniewicz family. The Gliniewicz family requests that their privacy be respected as they continue to cope with the loss of the beloved husband and father.&quot;</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Thu, 05 Nov 2015 09:43:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/more-questions-answers-after-probe-finds-fox-lake-officer-shot-himself-113647 Police may be 'reluctant to engage' in viral video age, DEA chief says http://www.wbez.org/news/police-may-be-reluctant-engage-viral-video-age-dea-chief-says-113641 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/ap_05101901396-1-_wide-aba1b8b04eb11c5a89a39503b2fb0bab98e43883-s1200.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The acting administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration said the police may be &quot;reluctant to engage&quot; for fear &quot;rightly, or wrongly, that you become the next viral video,&quot; adding a new voice to the debate over public scrutiny of law enforcement.</p><p>Chuck Rosenberg told reporters at a pen and pad session in Washington Wednesday that &quot;I think there&#39;s something to&quot; the concept known as the Ferguson effect, which maintains that police have stopped engaging with the public in the same way as scrutiny of their interactions with minorities increased over the past year.</p><p>Rosenberg said the issue deserved more study and better data. And he offered praise for FBI Director James Comey, who first raised the idea in a pair of speeches in Chicago in recent weeks. The White House has pushed back on that idea.</p><p>&quot;I think Comey was spot on,&quot; Rosenberg said. &quot;It&#39;s hard to try to measure. It&#39;s a hard thing to grasp ... We&#39;re not entirely sure what&#39;s going on and we ought to try and figure it out.&quot;</p><p>Rosenberg spoke as the DEA unveiled a new 2015 Drug Threat Assessment. Cocaine use has declined, but abuse of methamphetamine, heroin and opiod substances still pose a big problem across the country, the assessment said. Overdose deaths are now the nation&#39;s leading cause of death by injury, tallying more than 46,000 annual fatalities and surpassing car accidents and firearms incidents, the DEA said.</p><p>The DEA leader said he attributed a spike in violence in some big cities this year to &quot;roiling and violent&quot; heroin markets, the widespread availability of firearms and finally, more &quot;trepidation&quot; among police officers.</p><p>As a longtime federal prosecutor, Rosenberg said he understood and even approved of efforts by the Obama administration and Congress to reduce the disparity in punishment among criminals who traffic in powder cocaine and those who deal with it in rock form. Those punishments have had a disproportionate impact on African Americans and Hispanics in the justice system. But Rosenberg said he&#39;d prefer to step back and see how those changes are working before further relaxing mandatory minimum sentences first imposed during the War on Drugs.</p><p>Rosenberg said the recent early release of about 4,300 convicted drug offenders was &quot;not going to keep me up at night&quot; but that he&#39;s worried about whether there are enough resources to support those people when they leave institutions.</p><p>&quot;Do cities around America really have the resources to take more mentally ill folks, more jobless folks? I don&#39;t know. That&#39;s what worries me,&quot; he said.</p><p>Turning to the fight against drug abuse, Rosenberg said he&#39;d pursue a mixture of traditional enforcement, demand reduction and community outreach, and more diversion efforts and partnerships with doctors and pharmacies.</p><p>&quot;The notion that we&#39;re going to prosecute our way out of this or jail our way out or enforce our way out of this is a joke,&quot; he said.</p><p><em>&mdash;<a href="http://www.npr.org/2015/11/04/454642463/police-may-be-reluctant-to-engage-in-viral-video-age-dea-chief-says" target="_blank"> via NPR</a></em></p></p> Wed, 04 Nov 2015 14:30:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/police-may-be-reluctant-engage-viral-video-age-dea-chief-says-113641 Fox Lake officer staged suicide, committed crimes http://www.wbez.org/news/fox-lake-officer-staged-suicide-committed-crimes-113627 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/AP_367230908002.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>A northern Illinois police officer whose fatal shooting triggered a large manhunt carefully staged his death to make it look like he was killed in the line of duty and had been stealing for years from a youth program he oversaw, authorities said Wednesday.</p><p>Lake County Major Crimes Task Force Commander George Filenko, who led the two-month investigation into the Sept. 1 death of Fox Lake police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, said the popular officer embezzled thousands of dollars from the Fox Lake Police Explorer program for seven years.</p><p>He said Gliniewicz spent the money on things like mortgage payments, travel expenses, gym memberships and adult websites.</p><p>&quot;We have determined this staged suicide was the end result of extensive criminal acts that Gliniewicz had been committing in fact he was under increasing levels of personal stress from scrutiny of his management of the Fox Lake Police Explorer program,&quot; Filenko said at a news conference announcing the investigation&#39;s findings.</p><p>&quot;Gliniewicz committed the ultimate betrayal,&quot; he added.</p><p>On the day he died, Gliniewicz radioed in that he was chasing three suspicious men in a swampy area near Fox Lake, which is north of&nbsp;Chicago. Backup officers later found the Army veteran&#39;s body about 50 yards from his squad car.</p><p>Gliniewicz&#39;s death set off a large manhunt, with hundreds of officers searching houses, cabins and even boats on area lakes. Helicopters with heat-sensing scanners and K-9 units scoured the area for days. Around 50 suburban&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;police departments and sheriff&#39;s offices assisted, racking up more than $300,000 in overtime and other costs, according to an analysis that the Daily Herald newspaper published in early October.</p><p>Authorities said in October that Gliniewicz, 52, was shot with his own weapon. Authorities released only the vague description of three suspects that Gliniewicz had radioed in. They tracked down three men captured on a home security video system, but all were cleared and no one was ever arrested.</p><p>Gliniewicz took elaborate steps to try to make it look like he died in a struggle, including shooting himself twice in the torso.</p><p>He was struck by two rounds, one that hit his ballistic vest with the force of a &quot;sledgehammer&quot; and another that pierced his upper chest, Lake County Major Crimes Task Force Commander George Filenko said earlier in the investigation.</p><p>The officer&#39;s death also became part of the national discussion about excessive force by police and he was held up as a hero who died doing his job in a dangerous environment.</p><p>An outpouring of grief swept Fox Lake, a community of 10,000 residents located about 50 miles north of&nbsp;Chicago. Signs with the officer&#39;s picture hung in storefront windows and flags flew at half-staff in honor of the 30-year police veteran.</p><p>The tattooed officer with a shaved head was described by those who knew him as tough when needed, but also as sweet and a role model to youngsters aspiring to go into law enforcement.</p><p>More than 100 investigators stayed on the case for weeks, though questions arose in mid-September, and investigators began to concede that they could not rule out suicide or an accident.</p><p>One hint came when Lake County Coroner Dr. Thomas Rudd announced that Gliniewicz was killed by a &quot;single devastating&quot; shot to his chest. That prompted an angry response from Filenko, who said the release of such details put &quot;the entire case at risk.&quot;</p><p>Gliniewicz&#39;s family dismissed the suggestion of suicide. His son D.J. Gliniewicz said his father &quot;never once&quot; thought of taking his own life, and described how his dad spoke excitedly about what he planned to do after retiring.</p><p>Gliniewicz had four children.</p></p> Wed, 04 Nov 2015 08:57:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/fox-lake-officer-staged-suicide-committed-crimes-113627 Stealth mode? Built-in monitor? Not all body cameras are created equal http://www.wbez.org/news/stealth-mode-built-monitor-not-all-body-cameras-are-created-equal-113615 <p><div id="res453211563" previewtitle="Police body cameras are seen on a mannequin at an exhibit booth by manufacturer Wolfcom at the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference in Chicago, on Oct. 26."><div data-crop-type="" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Police body cameras are seen on a mannequin at an exhibit booth by manufacturer Wolfcom at the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference in Chicago, on Oct. 26." src="http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2015/10/30/body-camera-police_wide-65ecdc6f5498a6862a85b65c38799f4a12b76bd0-s800-c85.jpg" style="height: 348px; width: 620px;" title="Police body cameras are seen on a mannequin at an exhibit booth by manufacturer Wolfcom at the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference in Chicago, on Oct. 26. (Jim Young/Reuters/Landov)" /></div><div><p>Amid the recent pressure on police to wear body cameras, one thing is often overlooked: Not all cameras are created equal. In fact, cameras vary a lot &mdash; and the variations &mdash; some contentious &mdash; can have a profound effect on how the cameras are used and who benefits from them.</p></div></div><p>Take the buffer function. Most cameras buffer &mdash; they save video of what happens just before an officer presses record.</p><p>Taser is a leading company in the body camera business. Its buffer function doesn&#39;t include sound.</p><p>Steve Tuttle, a spokesman for the company, says that&#39;s to avoid recording what an officer was saying right before an incident.</p><p>&quot;It&#39;s video-only at that point. We want to protect the officers&#39; privacy, because those private conversations could take the context out of what they were saying, especially a joke,&quot; Tuttle said recently during an expo in Chicago at the annual conference of the International Association of Chiefs of Police.</p><p>Police unions like this feature. But reformers say this means Taser cameras will miss sounds, such as a telling comment inside the squad car, that could explain why an officer decided to pull someone over.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_817188906028.jpg" style="text-align: center; height: 310px; width: 550px;" title="In this photo taken Thursday, Feb. 19, 2015, Steve Tuttle, vice president of communications for Taser International, demonstrates one of the company's body cameras that can be attached to glasses , for the Associated Press during a company-sponsored conference hosted by Taser at the California Highway Patrol Headquarters in Sacramento, Calif. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)" /></p><p><strong>Who Do The Cameras Serve?</strong></p><p>Other cameras have features that are just as contentious. A company called Safety Vision makes a camera with a monitor on it.</p><p>&quot;This makes it very easy for the officer to go back, in the field, after he made a recording, and actually review, recollect everything that just happened, and that way his report&#39;s going to be accurate,&quot; said Mike Tennon, who was working at the company&#39;s booth at the expo in Chicago.</p><div id="con453220578" previewtitle="Related NPR Stories"><div id="res453227582"><div><div>&nbsp;</div></div></div></div><p>It may seem like a convenient feature, but it&#39;s actually part of a heated debate over whether officers should be able to view their videos before writing their incident reports. In&nbsp;<a href="http://www.capitalnewyork.com/article/city-hall/2015/08/8573390/bratton-says-cops-should-see-body-camera-footage">New York City</a>&nbsp;and&nbsp;<a href="https://www.aclu.org/blog/free-future/should-officers-be-permitted-view-body-camera-footage-writing-their-reports">California</a>, reformers say officers should not be allowed to view their videos before writing reports, because they might tailor their reports to what the camera caught &mdash; and didn&#39;t catch.</p><p>And here&#39;s another basic question: Should a camera show that it&#39;s on? Should there always be a blinking red light? On the Safety Vision camera, it&#39;s an option: &quot;We can go to a complete stealth mode where there are no lights on at all,&quot; Tennon said.</p><p>Other companies take the opposite tack. Instead of &quot;stealth mode,&quot; their cameras&#39; screens are turned outward so civilians can&#39;t miss the fact that they&#39;re on camera. Those companies say this enhances a camera&#39;s deterrent effect, sort of like people seeing themselves on security monitors as they walk into a store.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_715219651196.jpg" style="height: 269px; width: 350px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; float: right;" title="Whitestown Police Department officer Reggie Thomas makes a traffic stop, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2015 in Whitestown, Ind. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)" /><strong>Important For Ordinary Officers To See Value</strong></p><p>Travis Reddy is CEO of an Australian company called Strategic Systems Alliance. He says decisions about privacy are localized in the U.S., coming down to state laws and police department policies &mdash; which is why his company has made its cameras more programmable.</p><p>&quot;We&#39;re here to enable the policies that need to be implemented, so give them the flexibility to go either way,&quot; Reddy said. &quot;(That&#39;s the) great thing about software.&quot;</p><p>His company&#39;s cameras are essentially computers, running on the Android operating system. The thing about programmable cameras, though, is that they may end up doing a lot more than anyone expected. For instance, the Strategic Systems Alliance cameras can read license plates and faces.</p><p>&quot;As I wear this and walk around, it&#39;s checking all the faces I walk past and all the vehicles I walk past and notifying me if any of those people are on my watch list,&quot; Reddy said, walking around the expo floor.</p><p>Reformers pushing for body cameras may not have anticipated full-time facial recognition. The way Reddy sees it, though, it&#39;s features like this that will get cops to want the cameras.</p><p>&quot;We see it as important for the rank and file officer to see the value in it, other than just repeatedly being used against them in the court,&quot; Reddy said. &quot;The technology has the ability to actually assist them to do their job and not just be a passive observer of what&#39;s occurred,&quot; Reddy said.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP_600133213198.jpg" style="height: 256px; width: 350px; float: right; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px;" title="Whitestown Police Department officer Reggie Thomas holds a body camera that he wears while on his shift, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2015 in Whitestown, Ind. An urban versus rural divide emerged during an Indiana legislative committee discussion of possible restrictions on the use of body cameras by police agencies. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)" /></p><p><strong>Making A Choice On Price &mdash; And Priorities</strong></p><p>Police departments shopping for body cameras right now face a bewildering range of choices, with at least a couple dozen brands and configurations to choose from.</p><p>Purchase decisions are often based on brand or cost, as well as what kind of data management services the company offers. Outfitting a whole police force with cameras will quickly generate terabytes of video, and the storage and management of all that data can represent two-thirds of the cost of a camera program. Departments are looking for systems that reduce that cost and simplify the &quot;back end&quot; of a camera system.</p><p>What the departments may not realize, however, is that, depending on the features that come with their new cameras, their choice of system is also a decision about how the cameras will be used, and for what purpose.</p><p>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2015/10/30/453210272/stealth-mode-built-in-monitor-not-all-body-cameras-are-created-equal?ft=nprml&amp;f=453210272" target="_blank"><em>via NPR</em></a></p></p> Tue, 03 Nov 2015 12:14:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/stealth-mode-built-monitor-not-all-body-cameras-are-created-equal-113615 Morning Shift: October 29, 2015 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/morning-shift-october-29-2015-113554 <p><p>These days, uniformed police officers are the norm for lots of schools. And, by now, we&rsquo;ve all seen the shocking video of the South Carolina school cop who forcibly removed a female student from the classroom after she refused a teacher&rsquo;s order. We talk about <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/police-role-school-disciplinary-process-113552">cops in schools</a> &mdash; the role that they play, the limits they should have and whether it&rsquo;s a good idea to have them there in the first place. Plus, a <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/book-soul-food-highlights-connection-civil-rights-movement-113550">soul food tour</a> of the south...with a few stops up north. And we hear the details of the <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/breaking-down-mayor%E2%80%99s-budget-113551">budget </a>passed by Chicago&#39;s city council Wednesday. And a conversation with <a href="http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/wbez-25-ira-looks-back-113553">Ira Glass</a> about the evolution of his radio show, This American Life.</p></p> Thu, 29 Oct 2015 12:52:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/morning-shift-october-29-2015-113554 Police role in school disciplinary process http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/police-role-school-disciplinary-process-113552 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/police school flickr North Charleston.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>A viral video shot on October 26 in a classroom at Spring Valley High School in South Carolina shows a school resource officer forcefully removing a student after she refused to leave the classroom. The student was later arrested. The video has sparked a national debate about police in schools, and the incident is now the subject of state and federal investigations. The officer, a sheriff&#39;s deputy named Ben Fields, has been fired. And the superintendent of the school district says she is reviewing the decision making process for using police in disciplinary matters.</p><p>Larry Johnson, president of the <a href="http://www.nassleo.org/">National Association of School Safety and Law Enforcement Officials</a>, and <a href="https://twitter.com/jbouie?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Jamelle Bouie</a>, chief political correspondent for Slate, discuss the role of police officers in school. Bouie&#39;s recent article, &ldquo;<a href="http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2015/10/spring_valley_high_school_resource_officer_ben_field_s_violent_arrest_of.html">Lessons in Brutality</a>,&rdquo; suggests that incidents like the one at Spring Valley High School are more common than we might think.</p></p> Thu, 29 Oct 2015 12:39:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-29/police-role-school-disciplinary-process-113552 Reaction to President Obama’s Speech to chiefs of police http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-28/reaction-president-obama%E2%80%99s-speech-chiefs-police-113536 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/Obama police speech AP Pablo Martinez Monsivais web.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Resources for police, criminal justice reform and gun control are three topics President Obama touched on yesterday afternoon in Chicago. He was in town to address the annual conference for the International Association of Chiefs of Police, where he started by praising the work of officers around the country. But the president also acknowledged the strained relationship between minority communities and the police and called on officers and departments to do their part to solve that problem.</p><p><a href="http://www.luc.edu/psychology/facultystaff/lurigio_a.shtml">Art Lurigio</a>, a professor and dean for faculty at Loyola University who studies the intersection of psychology and criminal justice, talks more about the president&rsquo;s remarks and police-community relations in Chicago.&nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 28 Oct 2015 12:11:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-10-28/reaction-president-obama%E2%80%99s-speech-chiefs-police-113536 Video of S.C. deputy throwing student to ground prompts inquiry, outrage http://www.wbez.org/news/video-sc-deputy-throwing-student-ground-prompts-inquiry-outrage-113520 <p><div id="res452211041" previewtitle="Spring Valley High School in Columbia, S.C., was the scene of a disturbing arrest Monday, setting off a flurry of online comments and outrage."><div data-crop-type=""><img alt="Spring Valley High School in Columbia, S.C., was the scene of a disturbing arrest Monday, setting off a flurry of online comments and outrage." src="http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2015/10/27/spring-valley_wide-b1eff903ff49354a13919e73e501c236fd7a63a3-s800-c85.jpg" style="height: 348px; width: 620px;" title="Spring Valley High School in Columbia, S.C., was the scene of a disturbing arrest Monday, setting off a flurry of online comments and outrage. (Google Maps)" /></div><div><div><p>Authorities are investigating a classroom incident between a white sheriff&#39;s deputy and a black high school student in Columbia, S.C., in which video shows the deputy, a school resource officer, flipping the female student&#39;s desk backward and dragging her to the ground.</p></div></div></div><p>The Richland County sheriff has asked the FBI to investigate. School officials also say they&#39;re investigating. Columbia&#39;s Mayor Steve Benjamin also called for an independent investigation, as did the school district&#39;s Black Parents Association.</p><p>With an investigation ongoing, the deputy has been shifted to other duties and ordered not to visit any schools, according to&nbsp;<a href="http://www.thestate.com/news/local/crime/article41478366.html">The State</a>&nbsp;newspaper.</p><div id="res452210749"><div style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" scrolling="no" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/HN966KxyoIU?rel=0" width="420"></iframe></div></div><p>The incident took place Monday at Spring Valley High School, after Deputy Ben Fields of the sheriff&#39;s department was called on to remove a student who had reportedly been disruptive and refused to leave the classroom.</p><p>After two separate videos of the confrontation were posted to social media, they were widely shared and drew thousands of comments online. Other recordings have since surfaced, showing the incident from more angles.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><blockquote class="twitter-video" lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Even worse angle. RT <a href="https://twitter.com/HIFTBABG">@HIFTBABG</a>: Wtf... <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/AssaultAtSpringValleyHigh?src=hash">#AssaultAtSpringValleyHigh</a> I&#39;m disgusted <a href="https://t.co/fPlCM2iUtm">pic.twitter.com/fPlCM2iUtm</a></p>&mdash; justin kanew (@justin_kanew) <a href="https://twitter.com/justin_kanew/status/658865742587125760">October 27, 2015</a></blockquote><p>&nbsp;</p><p>Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott has seen a video &quot;and was very disturbed by what he saw,&quot; department spokesman Lt. Curtis Wilson tells&nbsp;The State. Wilson says Lott is currently out of town at a law enforcement conference.</p><p>Several students in the classroom took videos of the confrontation, which one of them says &quot;was definitely a scary experience.&quot;</p><p>&quot;I have never seen anything so nasty-looking, so sick, to the point where other students are turning away, you know, don&#39;t know what to do,&quot; student Tony Robinson Jr.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wltx.com/story/news/local/2015/10/27/student-who-videotaped-incident-speaks-out/74664592/">tells local TV WLTX 19</a>. &quot;That&#39;s supposed to be somebody that&#39;s going to protect us, not somebody that we need to be scared of, or afraid.&quot;</p><p>Robinson says the incident took place around midmorning Monday, moments after the deputy was called to the classroom, a step that he says was taken after the female student refused to turn over a cellphone &mdash; first to a teacher and then to an administrator.</p><p>Robinson says he believes the deputy knew things would turn physical &mdash; he says Fields asked a neighboring student to move their desk and also removed the female student&#39;s laptop before grabbing her and pushing the desk backward.</p><p>He started recording events, Robinson tells WLTX, because he felt &quot;this is something everybody else needs to see. This is something that, we can&#39;t just let this pass by.&quot;</p><p>In the classroom, a second student was arrested, Robinson says, for &quot;literally saying what we were all thinking: &#39;This is wrong.&#39; &quot;</p><p>Both students were detained and charged with &quot;disturbing schools,&quot; according to multiple local media news outlets. They were later released into their parents&#39; custody.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">If she were &quot;disruptive&quot; in CLASS why not call in the principal, parent /guardian not cops NO justification for children <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/springvalleyhigh?src=hash">#springvalleyhigh</a></p>&mdash; MichaelaAngela Davis (@MichaelaAngelaD)<a href="https://twitter.com/MichaelaAngelaD/status/659023238857650176">October 27, 2015</a><p>&nbsp;</p></blockquote><p>In recent years, Deputy Fields has been the target of two federal lawsuits,&nbsp;<em><a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/27/us/officers-classroom-fight-with-student-is-caught-on-video.html?hp&amp;action=click&amp;pgtype=Homepage&amp;module=second-column-region&amp;region=top-news&amp;WT.nav=top-news&amp;_r=1">The New York Times</a>&nbsp;</em>reports.</p><p>The newspaper outlines the cases, both of which allege civil rights violations by Fields. In the most recent, filed in 2013, a former Spring Valley student said Fields unfairly targeted black students.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">I fully support our police force &amp; know many of you do too. Lets remember that supporting them means calling out bad cops. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SpringValleyHigh?src=hash">#SpringValleyHigh</a></p>&mdash; Danielle Butcher (@RepublicanSass) <a href="https://twitter.com/RepublicanSass/status/659049468617183232">October 27, 2015</a></blockquote><p>&nbsp;</p><p>In a statement about Monday&#39;s incident, Richland School District 2 Superintendent Debbie Hamm said: &quot;Student safety is and always will be the district&#39;s top priority. The district will not tolerate any actions that jeopardize the safety of our students.&quot;</p><p>After making initial contact about the case with the Justice Department on Monday, Sheriff Lott filed a formal request for an investigation early Tuesday, reports local&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wistv.com/story/30353999/video-shows-spring-valley-school-resource-officer-slamming-dragging-student-out-of-desk">WIS TV 10</a>.</p><p>&quot;I&#39;m as upset as anybody and I&#39;m very disturbed by what I saw.&quot; Lott tells WIS. &quot;Appropriate action is going to be taken. We&#39;re going to do it as quick as possible. This isn&#39;t something that&#39;s going to linger on for weeks, or months or even days. It&#39;s going to be done very swiftly.&quot;</p><p>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/10/27/452206430/video-of-s-c-police-officer-throwing-student-to-ground-prompts-inquiry-and-outra?ft=nprml&amp;f=452206430" target="_blank"><em>via NPR</em></a></p></p> Tue, 27 Oct 2015 11:46:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/video-sc-deputy-throwing-student-ground-prompts-inquiry-outrage-113520