A NYPD officer plans to sue the city for $15 million, saying she has been the victim of a racially and sexually charged work environment since 2011.
Eunice Vilaseca claims her supervisor at the NYPD’s Housing Bureau in the Bronx, Lt. Dennis Azambuja, repeatedly discriminated against her and other minority employees while other supervisors ignored or condoned his actions, according to a notice of claim her lawyers filed March 14.
According to the notice of claim, Azambuja — who works at NYPD’s Public Service Area 8 at the Throggs Neck Houses — announced that he had a “Hit List” of African American and Hispanic workers he disliked for their ethnicity. He also made offensive comments about Vilaseca’s “Spanish hair,” and “openly referred to females as ‘Bitches’” in the workplace, according to the notice of claim filed by the Sanders Firm.
Vilaseca, who is Dominican, said she filed numerous complaints with the Office of Equal Employment and the Internal Affairs Bureau, but that there was no change in Azambuja’s workplace behavior, according to the notice of claim.
According to the Daily News, Vilaseca complained about Azambuja’s behavior, NYPD brass questioned her sanity and put her on modified assignment, Sanders claims.
“It was the same game they played with (Officer Adrian) Schoolcraft," said Sanders, referring to the Brooklyn cop who was detained by the NYPD and locked in a insane asylum for 6 days against his will when the department realized he was going to public with incriminating evidence against them.
The woman asked Officer Hill why he was stopping her.
She wore jean shorts and a tight red shirt and had stood outdoors for half an hour. She’d had a conversation with a passing man. When Officer Hill searched her bag, he found a condom and $1.25.
He arrested her for “loitering for the purpose of prostitution." On the supporting deposition, he filled in the blanks for what she was wearing and how many condoms she had.
When I read over the deposition in the PROS Network’s Public Health Crisis (PDF), a study of how the NYPD arrests folks for carrying condoms, I thought of all the tight shirts I’d worn while idling outside on delicious spring days. I thought, She sounds like me. She sounds like my friends.
The NYPD will arrest you for carrying condoms, but that depends entirely on who you are. If you’re a middle-class white girl like me, you’re probably safe. But say you’re a sex worker or a queer kid kicked out of your home. Say you’re a trans woman out for dinner with your boyfriend. Maybe you’ve been arrested as a sex worker before. Maybe some quota-filling cop thinks you look like a whore.
Then you’re not safe at all.
Like most laughably cruel tricks of the justice system, you probably wouldn’t know that you could be arrested for carrying condoms until it happened to you. Monica Gonzalez is a nurse and a grandmother. In 2008, Officer Sean Spencer arrested her for prostitution while she was on the way to the ER with an asthma attack. The condom he found on her turned out to be imaginary. Gonzalez sued the city after the charges were dropped. But if the condom were real, why should she have even been arrested at all?
Arrest is always violent. The NYPD may or may not break your ribs, but the process of arrest in America is still a man tying your hands behind your back at gunpoint and locking you in a cage. Holding cells are shit-encrusted boxes, often too crowded to sit down. Police can leave you there for three days; long enough to lose your job. If this seems obvious, I say it because the polite middle classes trivialize arrest. They talk about “keeping people off the streets.” They don’t realize that the constant threat of arrest is traumatic, unless it happens to them or their kids.
Prostitution is only a misdemeanor in New York, but a conviction will knock you off food stamps and out of subsidized housing. While society feigns wanting sex workers to change their profession, it does everything it can to keep them where they are. Most prostitution defendants plea bargain. Too broke and scared to fight, men and women agree to charges that will follow them for life.
There are two types of prostitution arrests. For “prostitution,” the officer has to witness you making an offer, but “loitering for the purposes of engaging in a prostitution offense" requires only circumstantial evidence. On the supporting depositions, officers answer a checklist. Were you standing in an area known for prostitution? According to Karina Claudio, a lead organizer at the community group Make the Road, these areas can be anywhere. Were you dressed provocatively? Did you speak to a guy? Were you standing next to someone who has been arrested for prostitution? Were you carrying condoms?
Claudio says, “There’s obviously a problem with a law so broad that if you are walking with a tight shirt in ‘a place where prostitution happens,’ you can be stopped. It’s like Russian roulette."
And you’re far more likely to be stopped if you’re trans.
In a study conducted by Make the Road, 59 percent of their trans respondents had been stopped by the police. Cristina, a trans woman out clubbing with her boyfriend, was accused of prostitution when cops found condoms in her bra. Let’s just pause for a moment to imagine the groping that led to this discovery.
The cops refused to believe that her guy wasn’t a client. Claudio says, “This happens to our members for walking while trans. They’re going to stores, clubs, restaurants, and they get profiled as sex workers because of their gender identity and expression.”
That’s how you get arrested for carrying condoms when you’re not a sex worker. But, let’s say you are a sex worker. You’re carrying condoms to protect your health and that of your clients. You may have gotten the condoms from the city itself. New York distributes 40 million condoms a year. The city has its own condom brand, its logo spelled out in the bright letters they use to mark subway lines.
So, you’re arrested. The proof needed to lock you up is that you’re carrying one of these city-branded, city-distributed devices.
If the cops don’t arrest you, they have a habit of confiscating your condoms.
The PROS Network’s study is filled with gutting stories. A 37-year-old white woman in Coney Island says, “I was locked up because I had a condom. I wasn’t even prostituting. They took the condom." A gender queer Puerto Rican sex worker, 22, says, "I’m damned if I do, I’m damned if I don’t. I don’t want to get any disease, but I do want to make my money. Why do they take our condoms? Do they want us to die?"
How does something so egregious keep happening? Because sex workers don’t matter.
Sex workers matter. They matter to their friends and partners, their kids, their parents, their communities. But sex workers don’t matter to power, even if power is paying a sex worker to dress it up in diapers every Wednesday.
Horrors are acceptable when they’re not happening to the dominant class.
NInety percent of people who are stopped and frisked are of color. Because of the work of community organizations, the mainstream media finally reports that the NYPD has been filling their arrest quotas by searching for weed under black teenagers’ testicles. They now report that, in a Clean Halls building, you could be slammed up against the wall, or even arrested, because you didn’t carry your ID when you were dumping the trash. If drugs and weapons provide an excuse to harass men of color, then condoms do the same for queer folks and women.
LGBT civil rights and sex worker advocacy groups are fighting against the use of condoms as evidence. Mainstream feminism is not. A movement that rightly and vociferously fought pharmacists who refused to fill birth control prescriptions has remained largely silent about women being jailed for carrying another contraceptive.
Mainstream feminism might remember that the war on women always starts with the war on whores. Then, that category expands to include everyone but the white virgin tying her knees together in church. Until 1996, Ireland locked up unmarried moms and rape victims in Magdalene Laundries, where nuns worked them to death to cleanse their imaginary sins. The nuns built those Magdalene Laundries to imprison sex workers. Tens of thousands of women died within their walls, of every walk of life except the very wealthiest.
A bill to end the use of condoms as evidence was introduced in 1999. Health and civil rights organizations have been fighting to pass it ever since. Audacia Ray, founder of the sex workers activist organization the Red Umbrella Project says that while many politicians are supportive of the bill in private, they’re afraid to champion it publicly. They don’t want to be seen as pro-prostitution.
If you’re a New Yorker who thinks it’s wrong that folks are locked in cages for trying to protect themselves and their partners from HIV, you might give your state senator a call. No Condoms as Evidence has more details.
With sex workers, as with anyone, charity doesn’t change things. Solidarity does. Have you ever been outside on a sunny day, wearing shorts, a condom in your purse? Were you afraid of being arrested? Or were you a good woman? A member of the privileged class? Do you look away from official violence, until maybe, one day, it happens to you?
A teenaged robbery suspect has filed a civil suit against Trois-Rivieres police after he was beaten during an arrest.
The arrest was captured on surveillance video from the nearby CEGEP de Trois-Rivieres, it shows a quartet of police officers running up to a man lying face first in the snow, surrendering. The officers then begin kicking and punching the man repeatedly for 30 seconds.
Alexis Vadeboncoeur, 19, stated in court Thursday that he was seriously injured from repeated kicks to his testicles and that a female officer grabbed his scrotum and squeezed.
His lawyer, Rene Duval, said that despite repeated requests for medical attention, Vadeboncoeur has yet to see a doctor.
“When he was brought to the police station he requested medical assistance, and no medical assistance was provided to him," said Duval.
“He’s telling me that since he’s been in detention he’s asked many times—in writing because that’s the way it should be done—and as of now he hasn’t received any medical assistance.”
The incident began when Vadeboncoeur allegedly robbed a Jean-Coutu pharmacy with a non-lethal pellet gun.
The video shows a hooded man running into the deserted CEGEP parking lot while pursued by police. The man then drops some items into the snow and lies face down in the snow, with his arms spread wide.
An officer then runs up and immediately begins kicking the man in the side, and several other officers join in.
The Surete du Quebec has launched an investigation into the arrest, and the four officers seen on the video have had their guns taken away and been suspended with pay.
The suspensions came about 10 days after the arrest, when discrepancies emerged between the arrest report filed by officers and other information sent from a third party.
Duval, has said his client will sue the Trois-Rivieres police officers in civil court.
An NYPD officer has been indicted on felony charges for lying in an official police report about a man trying to run him down with his car, an alleged lie that landed the innocent homeowner in jail for three nights.
In February, 30-year old Officer Diego Palacios claimed John Hockenjos, an MTA engineer living in Sheepshead Bay, attempted to run Palacios down at “a high rate of speed" which Palacios reported caused him to "jump out of the way to avoid being hit by defendant’s vehicle.”
But a surveillance video later surfaced showing Hockenjos slowly pulling into his driveway while Palacios stood still— a far cry from the life-threatening scenario the officer painted.
Hockenjos was exonerated nearly a month after his February 5 arrest. He told The Daily News, “I’m traumatized. It was the worst experience of my entire life.”
“My Former LAPD Officer Joe Jones MANIFESTO…I know most of you who personally who me are in disbelief of the partial story I will tell today. A story that has been suppressed for about 18 years, But lives strong everyday of my life. I without hesitation would like to send my condolences to the Victims who were lost and their families during this tragic situation. I would also like to send my condolences and well wishes to the many former and current Officers, as well as …Citizen’s and their families who lost the lives and souls of loved one’s to the injustices of Police Corruption, Scandal, Lies, Deception and Brutality.
Unlike Former Officer Dorner, I fear dying; But I also fear living in a society where Innocent people are dying for no reason. A society where pain so great can be afflicted to people who have to desire to live right and treat people right and then be punished for doing right. They say we all look alike. In very few cases this of course is true. But in most cases it is not. I feel a resemblance to Dorner, (See Photos) However several people who have no resemblance to Dorner have been shot due to the fear of what is taking place. I DO NOT WANT TO BE SHOT FOR CRIMES I DID NOT COMMIT!. Neither does anyone else. To preface my story I will say this: Just like former Officer Christopher Dorner I used to smile a lot. I loved everyone. I was voted Friendliest Senior of my Sr. Class in High School. I always believed in the system and never got into any trouble. I loved hard and gave to all I could.
After Joining the LAPD in 1989 I quickly found out that the world and society had major flaws. I had flaws as well for ever believing that our system of government was obligated to do the right thing. This* is what I believed as a young Officer. Without going into major detail, I need you to first assume that I would not surface 16 years later with lies about a situation that has me with PTSD to this very day. The pain forces me to speak as I have yet to shake the Ill’s of my experience as an LAPD Officer. Of course I have moved on physically. But mentally and emotionally I still live with flaws. I can’t go into re-living the emotions of what I went through so I will say this. I had my home viciously attacked by a gunman with my family and myself inside the house. No arrests were made and my family and I Received very little support. I had my Civil Rights violated on several occasions. I was falsely arrested at gunpoint by the Sheriffs as an Officer who ID’d himself and was conspired against by both LAPD and the Sheriffs when my Civil case went to Trial.
I was falsely accused on more than one occasion and simply placed in a position that the trust was so compromised that I could no longer wear the Uniform. Also know there were many more episodes. All of these issues are well documented and I present them not to be a Whistle blower, However to hope that one would not assume that all of what is being said is Lies as presented by Dorner. I don’t know him, But I know me. I will say from my experience, If a person knows they were wrong it is easier to move on without anger. Seems that Dorner obviously could not move on… Could I just be content and move on with my life and not say anything? Yes…Then I would feel that I for once had my chance to speak on something that hurts me to this day and I did nothing to arouse thought or provoke reform.
This is what I hope comes from this whole situation:
1. Families that lost someone to this tragedy find the peace that only God can give at this terrible time.
2. Citizens of Los Angeles be mindful of this fearful time to be an Officer and comply vigorously so that you are not the victim of an Officer on high alert.
3. Government and Politicians please be diligent in the responsibility of creating Laws that protect those who could be the victim of a conspiracy. Never allow the door to be shut on the Truth.
4. Honest and Fair LAPD & All Agencies: Keep doing what you are doing to protect citizens and be safe while you are doing so. We need you and I would hope that you do not allow the Bureaucratic drama and Stress to kill your morale as I know it can.
5. Unethical LAPD & all Agencies: Whatever is was that lead you down this path, Pray to somebody’s God to forgive you and begin to remove unethical methods to your policing style. Always think what if it were you, How would you feel?..How would you like if you were falsely accused and your life, lively-hood and career was taken from you? How would you like if someone was beating on you just because they felt they could get away with it? You are no better the criminals you took and oath to arrest when you do what you do!
6. Chistopher Dorner. The 1st thing I would say to him is, I feel your pains!…But you are going about this the wrong way. To take innocent lives could never be the answer to anything. I say this as a Man who experienced the same pain, betrayal, anger, suffering, litigation and agony that you did in many ways, Only I didn’t get Fired. I just choose to go a different route. My heart still suffered that same shock, I was still left to try and put the pieces back together. The disbelief that people could conspire and cause you to loose something you loved so dearly was still there. I lost my Career, I lost my Family, I lost my Dignity, I lost my Trust…But I am here now to hopefully one day see change…Bro, Don’t kill anymore Innocent people. Your point has been made. Clearly. They know you mean business, The whole world knows. Refrain from any further wrong doing and do what you must to salvage your Soul. Whatever that means to you. Just remember that God is a forgiving God.
In conclusion I say to people who knew none of this about me that one day I will have to reflect on when was the time to speak. When I see the potential for innocent lives to be lost…The time is Now!…JJ”
THOUSANDS of people plead guilty to crimes every year in the United States because they know that the odds of a jury’s believing their word over a police officer’s are slim to none. As a juror, whom are you likely to believe: the alleged criminal in an orange jumpsuit or two well-groomed police officers in uniforms who just swore to God they’re telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but? As one of my colleagues recently put it, “Everyone knows you have to be crazy to accuse the police of lying.”
But are police officers necessarily more trustworthy than alleged criminals? I think not. Not just because the police have a special inclination toward confabulation, but because, disturbingly, they have an incentive to lie. In this era of mass incarceration, the police shouldn’t be trusted any more than any other witness, perhaps less so.
That may sound harsh, but numerous law enforcement officials have put the matter more bluntly. Peter Keane, a former San Francisco Police commissioner, wrote an article in The San Francisco Chronicle decrying a police culture that treats lying as the norm: “Police officer perjury in court to justify illegal dope searches is commonplace. One of the dirty little not-so-secret secrets of the criminal justice system is undercover narcotics officers intentionally lying under oath. It is a perversion of the American justice system that strikes directly at the rule of law. Yet it is the routine way of doing business in courtrooms everywhere in America.”
The New York City Police Department is not exempt from this critique. In 2011, hundreds of drug cases were dismissed after several police officers were accused of mishandling evidence. That year, Justice Gustin L. Reichbach of the State Supreme Court in Brooklyn condemned a widespread culture of lying and corruption in the department’s drug enforcement units. “I thought I was not naïve,” he said when announcing a guilty verdict involving a police detective who had planted crack cocaine on a pair of suspects. “But even this court was shocked, not only by the seeming pervasive scope of misconduct but even more distressingly by the seeming casualness by which such conduct is employed.”
Remarkably, New York City officers have been found to engage in patterns of deceit in cases involving charges as minor as trespass. In September it was reported that the Bronx district attorney’s office was so alarmed by police lying that it decided to stop prosecuting people who were stopped and arrested for trespassing at public housing projects, unless prosecutors first interviewed the arresting officer to ensure the arrest was actually warranted. Jeannette Rucker, the chief of arraignments for the Bronx district attorney, explained in a letter that it had become apparent that the police were arresting people even when there was convincing evidence that they were innocent. To justify the arrests, Ms. Rucker claimed, police officers provided false written statements, and in depositions, the arresting officers gave false testimony.
Mr. Keane, in his Chronicle article, offered two major reasons the police lie so much. First, because they can. Police officers “know that in a swearing match between a drug defendant and a police officer, the judge always rules in favor of the officer.” At worst, the case will be dismissed, but the officer is free to continue business as usual. Second, criminal defendants are typically poor and uneducated, often belong to a racial minority, and often have a criminal record. “Police know that no one cares about these people,” Mr. Keane explained.
All true, but there is more to the story than that.
Police departments have been rewarded in recent years for the sheer numbers of stops, searches and arrests. In the war on drugs, federal grant programs like the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program have encouraged state and local law enforcement agencies to boost drug arrests in order to compete for millions of dollars in funding. Agencies receive cash rewards for arresting high numbers of people for drug offenses, no matter how minor the offenses or how weak the evidence. Law enforcement has increasingly become a numbers game. And as it has, police officers’ tendency to regard procedural rules as optional and to lie and distort the facts has grown as well. Numerous scandals involving police officers lying or planting drugs — in Tulia, Tex. and Oakland, Calif., for example — have been linked to federally funded drug task forces eager to keep the cash rolling in.
Britain’s largest police force stole the identities of an estimated 80 dead children and issued fake passports in their names for use by undercover police officers.
The Metropolitan police secretly authorised the practice for covert officers infiltrating protest groups without consulting or informing the children’s parents.
The details are revealed in an investigation by the Guardian, which has established how over three decades generations of police officers trawled through national birth and death records in search of suitable matches.
Undercover officers created aliases based on the details of the dead children and were issued with accompanying identity records such as driving licences and national insurance numbers. Some of the police officers spent up to 10 years pretending to be people who had died.
Two undercover officers have provided a detailed account of how they and others used the identities of dead children. One, who adopted the fake persona of Pete Black while undercover in anti-racist groups, said he felt he was “stomping on the grave" of the four-year-old boy whose identity he used.
“A part of me was thinking about how I would feel if someone was taking the names and details of my dead son for something like this,” he said. The Guardian has chosen not to identify Black by his real name.
A third undercover police officer in the SDS who adopted the identity of a dead child can be named as John Dines, a sergeant. He adopted the identity of an eight-year-old boy named John Barker, who died in 1968 from leukaemia. The Met said in a statement: “We are not prepared to confirm nor deny the deployment of individuals on specific operations.”
There is a suggestion that the practice of using dead infant identities may have been stopped in the mid-1990s, when death records were digitised. However, the case being investigated by the Met relates to a suspected undercover police officer who may have used a dead child’s identity in 2003.
The practice was introduced 40 years ago by police to lend credibility to the backstory of covert operatives spying on protesters, and to guard against the possibility that campaigners would discover their true identities.
Since then dozens of SDS officers, including those who posed as anti-capitalists, animal rights activists and violent far-right campaigners, have used the identities of dead children.
The case of the third officer, John Dines, reveals the risks posed to families who were unaware that their children’s identities were being used by undercover police.
During his covert deployment, Dines had a two-year relationship with a female activist before disappearing from her life. In an attempt to track down her disappeared boyfriend, the woman discovered the birth certificate of John Barker and tried to track down his family, unaware that she was actually searching for a dead child.
On the day Sanford police turned over the Trayvon Martin shooting investigation to prosecutors, they changed their final report at least four times over five hours and downgraded the charge they recommended from second-degree murder to manslaughter, newly released records show.
In the first version on March 13, lead Investigator Chris Serino and his bosses recommended that George Zimmerman, the Neighborhood Watch volunteer who killed Trayvon, be charged with murder. But they changed that about four hours later, according to paperwork released Tuesday by Zimmerman defense attorney Mark O’Mara.
Records reveal that Serino and his supervisors made several changes but only two major ones.
The first was the change in the charges.
The second was a strongly worded paragraph condemning Zimmerman’s actions, pointing out that there was no need for a confrontation with Trayvon.
Embattled ex-state trooper Lisa steed finds herself in more trouble. A class action lawsuit has been filed against her and the state of Utah.
You may remember, Steed was trooper of the year for busting a high number of people for drunk driving, but some of those convictions were overturned, and Steed was punished for making false arrests.
Now dozens of people are now coming forward to attorneys and claiming Steed wrongfully arrested them, and it ruined their life. Some people couldn’t afford to fight the convictions, and they lost their cars, their jobs, and in some cases their homes. The class action lawsuit is looking to help these people, get back what attorneys claim Steed and the Utah Highway Patrol took away.
”What this lady did to me was not right," said Thomas Romero, arrested by Steed.
Thomas Romero is talking about former Utah state trooper Lisa Steed. Romero is part of a class action lawsuit filed Friday, suing Steed and the Utah Highway Patrol for wrongfully arresting drivers for DUI. Romero said Steed arrested him in 2011, and he hadn’t had one drop of alcohol.
”I wasn’t drunk, I was not any intoxication, nothing," said Romero.
The Utah Highway Patrol recently fired Steed after ABC 4 discovered she had made several false DUI arrests. Attorney Robert Sykes said he believes hundreds of drivers’ rights may have been violated, and Steed may not be the only culprit.
”The government and particularly portions of the highway patrol have become lawbreakers and have institutionalized the breaking of the law basically to make money for the state of Utah," said Robert Sykes, attorney filing class action lawsuit.
In the lawsuit Sykes is filing, he asking for an injunction to stop the highway patrol from making illegal DUI arrests, and wants to undo all DUI convictions where a state trooper was the only witness. He’s hoping no else will suffer Romero’s pain of trying to fight a false arrest.
”I lost everything, I lost my motor home, I made people that I love mad at me," said Romero.
Attorneys are hoping to get Romero at least $20,000 to cover everything he lost, including his truck and his motor home. If you add up all the cases these attorneys think are out there, the lawsuit could potentially cost Steed and the Utah Highway Patrol $20 million.
Spain’s government is drafting a law that bans the photographing and filming of members of the police. The Interior Ministry assures they are not cracking down on freedom of expression, but protecting the lives of law enforcement officers.
The draft legislation follows waves of protests throughout the country against uncompromising austerity cuts to public healthcare and education.
The new Citizen Safety Law will prohibit “the capture, reproduction and editing of images, sounds or information of members of the security or armed forces in the line of duty,” said the director general of the police, Ignacio Cosido. He added that this new bill seeks to “find a balance between the protection of citizens’ rights and those of security forces.”
The dissemination of images and videos over social networks like Facebook will also be punishable under the legislation.
Despite the fact that the new law will cover all images that could pose a risk to the physical safety officers or impede them from executing their duty, the Interior Ministry maintains it will not encroach on freedom of expression.
Last year, nearly 700,000 people were stopped and frisked on the streets of the five boroughs of New York City. A New York Times investigation found that an overwhelming number of those stopped were minorities and that over half of the stops involved the use of excessive force. These disturbing numbers raise questions about the effectiveness of stop and frisk policies and suggest police may be unfairly targeting racial groups.
"Stop, Question and Frisk" is a policy of the New York City Police Department. It allows police officers to stop and search people on the street if they believe that the individuals they stop are committing or about to commit a crime. Opponents of the policy claim that it allows police to unlawfully stop and search law-abiding individuals, and that officers racially profile their targets.
The recent New York Times investigation found that a whopping 80 percent of the 680,000 people stopped and frisked by police last year were black or Hispanic men, and that excessive force was used in over half of all stop and frisk incidents. Excessive force in these cases included slamming a suspect’s head against a wall or throwing a suspect to the ground. In some severe cases, police even drew their weapons. Often, the behavior of the victims of this force did not warrant such extreme reactions. In fact, some who had fallen victim to forceful stop and frisks had simply asked the officers what they did to provoke the stop.
One in five stops in the five boroughs involved some use of force. The precincts with the highest rate of use of excessive force include the 44th and 46th in the Bronx, the 32nd in Upper Manhattan and the 115th in Jackson Heights in Queens.
The use of excessive force rarely results in arrest of suspected individuals. A comparison of the precincts with the highest and lowest rates of use of excessive force illustrates this point. In the 46th Precinct in the Bronx, where neighborhoods are mostly black or Hispanic, police officers used excessive force in 58 percent of all stop and frisks—the highest rate in the city. However, only three percent of the stop and frisks where force was used resulted in arrests.
In the 111th Precinct in Queens, police officers serve a community that is almost entirely white or Asian. Excessive force is used in only 4.7 percent of stop and frisks in the precinct, and 40 percent of these stop and frisks resulted in arrests.
After being convicted by a jury earlier this summer of sexual abuse for groping a woman in a bar, ex-DPS Officer Robb Gary Evans walked out of a Coconino County Superior Courtroom on Wednesday morning having been sentenced to two years of probation.
Evans received credit for the four days of jail time he served in Coconino County jail.
Prosecutors contended that he drank eight beers and then drove himself to the Green Room, where he flashed his badge in an attempt to get into a concert for free. While inside, he walked up behind the victim, who was a friend of a friend, put his hand up her skirt and then ran his fingers across her genitals.
When bouncers threw him out, Evans told them he was a cop and they would be arrested.
The 43-year-old former Arizona Department of Public Safety officer was facing between six months and 2 1/2 years in prison, but the crime was eligible for probation. He will not be required to register as a sex offender, according to the sentence.
The judge said she considered the defendant’s lack of a criminal record and strong community support in her sentencing.
She also advised the victim to be more vigilant.
A jury convicted Evans of sexual abuse, a class 5 felony, on July 2.
DPS fired Evans shortly after his criminal conviction and following an internal investigation, according to officials.
The judge sentencing Evans, Coconino County Superior Court Judge Jacqueline Hatch, said she hoped both the defendant and the victim would take lessons away from the case.
Bad things can happen in bars, Hatch told the victim, adding that other people might be more intoxicated than she was.
“If you wouldn’t have been there that night, none of this would have happened to you,” Hatch said.
Hatch told the victim and the defendant that no one would be happy with the sentence she gave, but that finding an appropriate sentence was her duty.
“I hope you look at what you’ve been through and try to take something positive out of it,” Hatch said to the victim in court. “You learned a lesson about friendship and you learned a lesson about vulnerability.”