It seems that there is a serious problem within the Baltimore Police Departments. Do some officers think that they are above the law because they have a badge and a gun, or is it a coincidence that there has been so many police officers being arrested lately?
January 2010 – Lieutenant James Cifala, age 47, of Edgewater, Maryland was arrested and charged with federal child pornography crimes. He was arrested at the Anne Arundel County Police Department by FBI agents, and was a 27 year veteran of the department. This is just one of the many officers that have been busted since the beginning of last year.
April 2010 – A Baltimore Police officer was arrested after pulling a gun on the employees at the Corinthian Lounge and Restaurant on Windsor Mill Road, in Baltimore.
August 2010 – An unnamed Baltimore County officer is arrested after losing his gun during a fight at Carlos O’Charlie’s Sports Bar on Eastern Avenue. The officer got into an argument with a man who was his girlfriend’s former boyfriend, and both went outside to duke it out. During the fight, the officer’s gun fell out of his holster and an unknown bystander took the gun and ran.
September 2010 – Officer Everett Walker, 29, a 6-year veteran, was arrested after a bar fight in the parking lot of Club Reality in Southwest Baltimore. It’s funny that his boss, Major Anthony Brown, of the Baltimore Police Department witnessed the arrest! Officer Walker was already suspended without pay stemming from his arrest last year during an alcohol-induced altercation in a police parking lot.
November 2010 – Officer Juan Carter, 36, who was already suspended from the Prince George’s County Police Department for re-selling guns that he seized from criminals, was arrested again for stashing a 10-inch bayonet in his SUV. Officer Carter was charged with carrying a concealed dangerous weapon. First this guy was selling the guns that he took from criminals to anyone who had the cash, which put the guns back on the street, then he gets busted for the concealed weapon. He’s a real upstanding citizen!
February 2011 – 17 Baltimore Police officers were arrested in an extortion scheme that generated thousands of dollars. The owners of Majestic Auto Repair Shot in Rosedale, Hernan Alexis Moreno Mejia, 30, and his brother Edwin Javier Mejia, 27, were paying the 17 police officers $300 for each vehicle that they had towed to their shop instead of taking the vehicles to the shops that were contracted by the police department. The Criminal Complaint Affidavit is 42 pages long and gives the details of the elaborate scheme set up by Majestic Auto Repair and the 17 Baltimore Police officers. Here is the Criminal Complaint in PDF format for all to see! Read it and weep as the officers in this case did. All the officers listed below have been awarded the “Bill’s Piece of the Web Officer Of Shame” award!
The officers arrested were: Eddy Arias, 39, Eric Ivan Ayala Olivera, 35, Rodney Cintron, 31, Jhonn S. Corona, 32, Michael Lee Cross, 28, Jerry Edward Diggs Jr., 24, Rafael Concepcion Feliciano Jr., 30, Jaime Luis Lugo Rivera, 35, Kelvin Quade Manrich, 41, Luis Nunez, 33, Samuel Ocasio, 35, David Reeping, 41, Jermaine Rice, 28, Leonel Rodriguez Torres, 31, Marcos Fernando Urena, 33, Osvaldo Valentine, 38, and Henry Yambo, age 28.
March 2011 – Baltimore Police Detective Kevin Rowland, 44, is charged with sexual abuse of a minor, a fourth degree sexual offense, and second degree assault. Detective Rowland is a 10-year veteran of the Baltimore Police Department, and he is currently suspended with pay. Wow, he abuses a child and still gets a paycheck.
March 2011 – The most recent cop busted is the Baltimore County Fraternal Order of Police Union President himself! Officer Cole Weston is accused of assaulting a Sedan driver in Parkville. The driver, Hosseim Taranpisheh, reported that Weston punched him in the ear, then pulled his gun on him late Wednesday night threatening to shoot him. Sean Manigault left the sedan to go into his house to retrieve money to pay the driver when his neighbor, Officer Weston, came out and started yelling at the two of them calling them drug dealers. When police arrived, it was apparent that Officer Weston was under the influence of alcohol, and out of control. The case is being investigated by the State’s Attorney’s Office, and charges have been filed by the sedan driver. As the FOP President, he should know better! Cole Weston’s actions show that he is more a criminal than a police officer, and he should be treated as such. It looks like the Baltimore County FOP will be looking for a new president, so send them your nominations today, before they select one for themselves!
UPDATE: March 31, 2011
The Harford County State’s Attorney’s Office charged Cole Weston on Tuesday March 29, 2011 with second-degree assault and reckless endangerment stemming from the attack on Hosseim Taranpisheh, the driver of the cab described above. It is obvious that Mr. Weston shouldn’t be in a position to do any more damage to the Baltimore Police Department or the Fraternal Order of Police union. The police union should make him their mascot instead of their president, as long as he doesn’t have a gun!
UPDATE: March 31, 2011
It just keeps getting better! A Baltimore Police Commander becomes a Major Pain in the ass for the police department and the mayor! Just days after publishing this entry, the same Baltimore Police Major that witnessed Officer Everett Walker being arrested this past September, now finds himself in hot water! Major Anthony Brown has had his police powers as a Baltimore Police Commander suspended while the department looks into an incident where Maj. Brown gave a friend a gun owned by Brown to keep at a restaurant. The gun in question has since been stolen from the restaurant in Fells Point, leaving Maj. Brown in deep doo doo. Maj. Brown is in charge of the Baltimore Police Special Operations Unit, which includes SWAT and the department’s fleet of helicopters. No charges have been filed as of yet, but if this is how our police commanders are setting example for officers under them, he needs to be relieved of his command permanently. Perhaps, there is another job for him that doesn’t involve even handling a gun, uh, let me see. . .Ah, “crossing guard!”
UPDATE: April 3, 2011
I didn’t mean for this post to be an ongoing log, but it seems that cops just keep getting into trouble! At approximately 2am on April 3, 2011, Baltimore Police arrested Officer Casey Lechter, 23, of the Harford County Police Department. Officer Lechter was charged with assault on a police officer, failure to obey a lawful order, and resisting arrest after he punched a female police officer in the head as she tried to handcuff his friend Kary Williams. Officer Lechter has only been a police officer since August, and was still in his probationary period so it isn’t difficult to speculate on whether he will remain a cop or not. From new cops to commanders, they are all getting their taste of criminal lifestyle, and I hope that other police officers take notice that they are NOT ABOVE THE LAW.
There have been a large number of police getting into some serious trouble lately! These are most of the cases that made the spotlight, so you know right off bat that there more cases that didn’t make the news, and that there are a lot more bad apples in the bunch. Not all of the police officers charged with crimes are highlighted in this post, but the ones that were quoted the most frequently in the news are above. As I stated in my previous post about the Baltimore County Flasher Cop, there are a lot of great cops out there too! It just happens to be that all the cops above make the entire Baltimore Police Department and Baltimore County Police Department look bad.
I think that something has to be done either in the recruiting of new police officers or in training to keep the public safe from those potentially dangerous criminals with badges. I know a few Baltimore County Police Officers personally, and I would trust them with my life any day of the week! The problem is that when you hear of so many “bad” cops out there, it really casts a bad light on the “good” cops that are honest and work hard every day to keep the public safe. One thing to keep in mind is that there are many, many more good cops than bad, so please treat them with the respect that they have earned, because being a cop is one of the most dangerous jobs out there!