Major court date on Friday, August 12, 2011 in which the Judge will give his verdict if this case goes to trial or is thrown out. We must show up to support the family and DEMAND Justice for MITRICE RICHARDSON!! The Lost Hills Sheriff’s Department is Guilty of many things and they all need to be revealed. So please come out and show your support & let them know WE WANT JUSTICE & WE ARE DEMANDING JUSTICE for Mitrice (RIP)!
Posts tagged ‘police corruption’
Well friends, family & followers:
It has happened. After all the delays & postponements, I finally went to trial last month on the 3 charges – 2 counts of battery on an officer & 1 count resisting arrest – (in fact in order to hedge their chances of winning, District Attorney Patrick Carey, added an additional charge of resisting arrest on the day the trial began-Jan 15, 2010, bringing me to a total of 4 charges) that the judge had originally thrown out in 2008, and the District Attorney’s office appealed. So here I am again, fighting for my future, my livelihood and my ability to earn a living in my chosen field all because the Sheriff’s department is not willing to admit that they erred in the way they stopped me and the way they handled me (or more correctly mishandled me).
The trial was very trying (7 days) and it was very hard to listen to Deputy/Detective Christopher Maurizi sit on the stand and literally lie about me and my actions and reactions to what he did at the time of my arrest. I tried very hard not to show my emotions to the court and jury, but it was hurtful and demeaning to hear someone describe me as an ‘out of control’ person who was yelling, screaming and very combative when all I wanted was an explanation as to why he had stopped me in the first place. The conversation started with a simple, “Hello, Officer, what happened, what did I do?” and ended with me being thrown to the ground, jumped on by 5 full-sized police officers, being choked to almost unconsciousness, being pepper sprayed twice in the face and eyes, being arrested and hog tied and tossed into the back of a police car, and charged with felonies, all for asking the questions, ‘What happened? What did I do?’
What I did learn during the trial however is that, according to the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department policy and procedures and also clearly reinforced by the District Attorney who tried my case is: WHEN STOPPED BY THE SHERIFFS YOU HAVE NO RIGHTS! According to what was said in court and established at my trial, you must obey; you must comply; you must cooperate; you must not speak; you must not question; you must get out of your car; you must go to where you are instructed; you must stand with you legs open (so you are off-balance); you must bend over the hood of their car and if you ask questions or show any form of what the ‘officer’ deems is resistance, then he can physically reach into your automobile, grab you by your clothing and forcibly remove you from the car!!
Now here’s the rub — just a few days after my trial ended, I happened to see a Pasadena Police Officer on the local news responding to fake police officers stopping, harassing, robbing, and whatever else they were doing to people in the City of Pasadena. The officer on TV was actually instructing all people to question officers who pull you over if you are suspicious of them. Telling us as citizens, not to just get out the car when approached and also to stop in a well-lit area where there are people around to be safe (Good luck finding this perfectly described scenario at 1:30 in the morning). She said that the officer is supposed to identify himself and even show some form of I.D. if requested by you.
Hmmmmmmm….According to this officers logic we as regular citizens in this society can question on-duty officers, which I know is not at all the case in the REAL WORLD! I felt the description & details provided were not accurate in today’s day & time to say the least because we deal with REAL officers with authority issues & who don’t respond well with being asked anything at all! This just confirmed for me that the way I was treated was totally out line and unjustified & also that SOME officers themselves are oblivious to the DEMANDING/AUTHORITATIVE nature of some of these rogue cops.
The main problem I have is that the police department on one hand goes on TV with these ‘community advice’ sessions and they don’t help! Their suggestions are in direct conflict with what officers are charging and trying people for, for attempting to do exactly what they suggest you do and what I did.
But going back to the topic of my trial…after sitting through the testimony of 2 lying Sheriff Deputies, Deputy Chris Maurizi & Deputy Regan Fitzgerald, who both claim I battered them and 3 days of jury deliberations…the jury came back DEADLOCKED, a hung jury. The jury kept coming back asking questions, wanting more info to help make a decision, it even got to the point the attorneys on both sides had to do a 2nd closing argument because the judge was wanting a verdict to be reached. But to no avail, the jury could not agree, leaving me once again back at SQUARE ONE because the District Attorney made sure they refiled the case again, but only after trying to offer me an outlandish deal!
PLEAD GUILTY TO RESISTING ARREST, 3 YEARS SUMMARY PROBATION, & 1 YEAR ANGER MANAGEMENT.
I laughed because there is NO WAY they could/would ever get me to take a deal. Their supposed incentive was that I wouldn’t be receiving jail time if I took the deal, but if I didn’t take it, I need to remember I’m facing serious jail time….yea yea yea ….they can say all they want to, but I never resisted the deputy, so to take a plea is admitting guilt…..I’m NOT GUILTY so why would I plead?
So as of now, I go back to court March 5, 2010 for my trial readiness date. I should be set to go to trial again before the end of March. This will be my 3rd time taking the stand to plead my innocence, which is ridiculous considering how BROKE THE CITY OF LOS ANGELES is, but yet & still the DA’s office has NO PROBLEM spending thousands of tax payers dollars on a case that they know is ludicrous & false.
More to come…………………………………………
Throughout my plight with this case, I have noticed quite a few days in my fight that are dates of important significance, giving me the ability to understand some things easier as well as providing me the Strength to KEEP UP THE FIGHT!! I see these things as signs:
April 6, 2007 was Good Friday, the day I was BATTERED, FALSELY ARRESTED, & LOCKED AWAY IN A CELL. For those out there that are Christian believers, as I am, know Jesus was BEAT, NAILED to the cross, TAKEN AWAY & put into the TOMB on Good Friday…..and just when the enemies thought HE was DEFEATED, HE ROSE 3 days later!!! Relating this to my situation, God told me near the beginning of this case that JESUS’ 3 days would equate to MY 3 YEARS, and that’s when I would RISE from this situation, so……….. APRIL 6, 2010…Here We Come!
January 15th is MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.’s Birthday and in 2008, it was the day LAPD fired me due to the FALSE ALLEGATIONS posed against me by the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department. Two years later, January 15, 2010, I ironically began to pick my jury for the start of my 2nd trial, fighting the remaining 4 charges against me – The D.A. added an extra resisting arrest charge on this same day, taking me from three to four charges all of a sudden after 2 1/2 years. So as Dr. King once stated, “We Shall Overcome!” – It wasn’t by accident that each of these events happened to me on this day….This let me know I will Overcome!!
June 3, 2008 was the day Barack Obama won the race to become the FIRST AFRICAN AMERICAN DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE. This was also the SAME day the 3 charges – 2 counts of battery on an officer & the 1 count of resisting arrest – were DISMISSED by the PRETRIAL JUDGE before my first trial. Leaving me with a reckless driving charge & a possession of less than an ounce of marijuana charge. This just gave me the MOTIVATION to keep FIGHTING & know that a CHANGE can come.
June 16, 2008 was Tupac Shakur’s Birthday and was also MY TRIAL VERDICT DAY at a court location known for its HIGH CONVICTION RATES with cases against the POLICE……where I was found NOT GUILTY on the RECKLESS DRIVING CHARGE. Now for those who know anything about Tupac, know he couldn’t stand the police nor police injustice, so I found it INTERESTING the jury found DEPUTY MAURIZI to be a LIAR and I had the reckless driving charge I was FALSELY ACCUSED of DROPPED on his birthday.
January 27, 2010 was the end of my 2nd TRIAL, where I had a HUNG JURY on the 4 FALSE charges posed against me. (More detail on this to come) This was the same day MICHAEL JACKSON got burned during the Pepsi commercial in ’83 as well as the same day President Obama gave his State of the Union Address saying, “We’ve finished a difficult year..But a new year has come…..I don’t quit. Let’s seize this moment” So I took this to mean, even though I was close to the flame, & they (the police) tried to burn me, I’m not giving up, I must keep up the FIGHT!
So far this is what I’ve come up with. To some people, these dates may mean nothing, but to me I feel all these dates of significance mean something important.
I’m Fighting until there is no more Fight in me….and I don’t see that being anytime soon!!
“NO WEAPON FORMED AGAINST ME SHALL PROSPER”
Within the past couple months, it has become clear that the District Attorney’s office/Sheriff’s Department is intent on making this case a LIVING NIGHTMARE for me!
Brief recap: June 16th, 2009, was my completion date to have my community service hours finished in lieu of last years conviction (51 Hours to be done). At the end of trial, I was given the return-to-court slip stating that I was to return to Torrance Courthouse on that day.
However, I decided on June 15th, to go handle this matter, because I was going to file an extension since I had not fully completed the hours yet, and I wanted to take care of this matter a day before it was due, just in case they were going to play games with me. I arrived at Torrance Courthouse with the intent on getting my extension only to be hit with some STARTLING INFO!
The clerk told me that I wasn’t to report there but to INGLEWOOD Courthouse June 16th & that my file was no longer at TORRANCE Courthouse, so she couldn’t help me.
I was confused & upset! How was my court location changed without my knowledge? Why wasn’t I notified of the switch in locations??? Were they trying to make me miss my court date/time so they could issue out a warrant?? I just happened to go up there the day before the given courtdate, so had I waited until the actual given court date, I would have been screwed due to uncontrollable circumstances! WOW!
The clerk apologized for this inconvenience and told me that my file had been transferred to Inglewood Court June 8, 2009 and that I would need to go there to file my community service extension and to handle any further activities. She said this was “weird,” which of course, I agreed! She then gave me a printout of court case, which showed my next scheduled event was 6/16/09 8:30 AM for Proof of Community Service at Inglewood Courthouse.
I then went over to Inglewood Court that same day (June 15) and got my extension filed until July 17, 2009. That was the date the clerk gave me, as well as a little unnecessary attitude because she couldn’t understand why I needed more time to finish……. Outside of that, I was done. I got my extension and she let me know that I did not have to return to court until July 17th with my completion letter.
Fast forward to July 1st: I had taken a 2 week vacation from thinking about my case, which at times consumes me, and was now ready to get back on track. Since I knew the three dismissed charges had been reversed May 27th, I wanted to know what the next step was going to be in this “criminal process.”
I called the Inglewood Court Criminal Clerks Office, and after giving out my information, I was told that I had a $10,000 WARRANT OUT FOR MY ARREST!!!!
I almost fell out! A warrant?? Ive never had a warrant before?? How do I have a warrant? For what? Just so many questions running through my mind….
She explained that I had this warrant due to FAILURE TO APPEAR for my PRETRIAL on June 17, 2009….& that neither me or my lawyer showed up & the only way to get the warrant cleared up is to come to court and speak to the judge.
I was so ANGRY!!! I let her know that I had not received any type of notification letting me know of a PRETRIAL date, so how could I be issued a warrant??
What made this more strange, is the fact that this alleged PRETRIAL date was just 2 days after I had went to TORRANCE Court & INGLEWOOD Court about my community service. The lady had gave me a printout showing June 16th was my only upcoming court date, nothing else!
My lawyer had even went to Inglewood Courthouse on the 16th because I had forgot to tell her I got the extension that day before. She told me she spoke with the clerks office and nobody mentioned a court date for that very next day to her either!!!
They were obviously playing games with me! How does a court date magically appear on the calendar within a day?? I had just received the printout so if I had PRETRIAL in 2 days, it would have been on the printout. And then just to think I was driving around for those 2 full weeks of having a WARRANT out for my ARREST…..That thought just sent chills down my spine because I could have been pulled over and arrested for something I knew nothing of!!
That very next day, My lawyer & I went to court, July 2nd, to clear this matter up. When before the judge, we were notified that INGLEWOOD Courthouse did not even have jurisdiction to issue me a warrant and that it was issued out wrongfully. Also the judge noted that me nor my lawyer were receiving any notifications about my court case since there were no proof of service forms filed by the DA’s office…..THEY WERE TRYING TO GET ME!!
The Corrupt Blue Line
You never know from day to day what tomorrow might bring.
You could go from prosperity, to losing everything.
A turn of events, though unexpected could change your life forever.
We all say “It won’t happen to me,” but trust me don’t say never.
I have to tell Cherise’s story. You might find it hard to believe.
But when you understand the truth, I’m sure that you will grieve
A magnificent girl of poise and beauty, she really had it all.
Education and a good job, but then there came the fall.
One night while driving home from work about two years ago,
The L.A. Sheriffs stopped Cherise. Why? We just don’t know.
There was no reason then or now or for what else they did do.
They beat Cherise and tortured her, till she was black and blue.
Was that the end? No my friend. The abuse was oh so wrong.
To protect themselves from prosecution, they sang a different song.
They made up lies that they were attacked, that force was necessary.
At one hundred and ten pounds, she’s just really not that scary.
For two long years they’ve drug this out, to disrespect her name.
She lost her job and lives in fear, and for this they show no shame.
To keep from crossing “The Corrupt Blue Line” her life they would destroy.
No remorse for what they had done, they live their lives in sinful joy.
In and out of court for months, Cherise has been made to go.
Now she waits for the judge to decide and finally let her know.
Will the judge be biased? or will justice at last prevail?
Justice says the crooked cops should all spend time in jail.
Through it all, I must say, I’ve really been impressed.
Cherise has kept her head up high while facing every test.
Always worried, always scared, but seldom letting on.
Jumping all the hurdles placed, meeting everyday head on.
I know she has shed a million tears, and believe me so have I.
You’d have to be a LA. cop or worse if it didn’t make you cry.
Whatever happens from here on out, I’m going to place my bet.
With God’s help, Cherise will prevail; she’ll be the winner yet.
Written by: Nick Devisa
The District Attorney’s office has launched an expensive appeal regarding the matter of the 3 charges dismissed by the Pretrial judge in June 2008. As of today’s date, May 17, 2009, nearly a year later, I am still awaiting the decision of the appellate court to move further than the day it began.
The DA’s office started off by filing 3 separate continuances each asking for monthly extensions claiming they needed more time to prepare before actually going forth in filing their opening brief. We are now in the month of May 2009 and I am still awaiting the outcome of the appeal. The appeal is under consideration and will soon be decided by the California State Court. Here’s where the problem lies, the case they are appealing has ALREADY BEEN AJUDICATED — AND I WON! A jury of my peers found that there was no good ground for stopping me in the first place in June 2008. The jury said that the police did not prove that I had done anything to provoke the stop.
With reference to the alleged battery on an officer that took place after the stop, it was never heard by the jury because it had been thrown out in pre-trial. It was thrown out because the police could not produce nor could they prove any of the so-called resisting arrest and battery on a police officer charges that were originally brought against me.
Here we are over 2 years since this nightmare began for me, and it is so hard and downright painful for me to tell you what this has done to my life. Not only has it cost me my job with LAPD and several other employment opportunities, but the stress of what has happened to me has made a greater impact on my physical health. And let’s stop talking about what it has done to me and think about what it has and is continuing to do to the state, county and city budget. The amount of hours that have been wasted and the money that has been spent by the County of Los Angeles DA’s Office on a MISDEMEANOR charge that was already decided in my favor is MINDBOGGLING!
THIS IS A STORY OF POLICE BRUTALITY, POLICE DECEIT, CRIME
AND CORRUPTION, POLICE MISCONDUCT, DISCRIMINATION …
This story is being told in a third party format by Roni Green, who has an extensive background in the law, including working for the District Attorney’s Office (9 years), Court Reporter, Paralegal, and Executive Legal Assistant to several attorneys. This is an ongoing story of police brutality, police corruption, and the police departments’ zest to prosecute no matter the cause or the expense. This is a cliffhanger. Stay with us and follow the story………
On April 6th 2007, at approximately 1:30AM, my niece was driving eastbound on Century Blvd. in Inglewood, CA.
She told me she stopped at the Yukon light, in the far left lane. The light was yellow as she approached, that’s when she noticed a police car was behind her. They both sat at the light for about 10 to 15 seconds. As the light turned green, she proceeded to drive a couple of feet and the police car turned on its sirens for her to pull over. She proceeded to the right, and stopped in front of Washington Mutual Bank on Century Blvd. Once she stopped, a deputy sheriff approached her vehicle. He was alone. He told her to turn off her car and keep her hands where he could see them. She put both her hands on the steering wheel. Next, he told her to step out of the vehicle. She asked him, “What did I do?” He told her again to step out the vehicle. She told him that she had just gotten off work and that she worked for LAPD, and she knew she hadn’t done anything wrong; she simply wanted to know why she needed to get out of the car? (She was very uncomfortable because he never once asked her for identification of any kind nor, did he identify himself.) He then stated “I don’t give a f*** where you work, get out the car!” She became very fearful.
Its 1:30AM, She is alone, he is alone and he is not telling her why he pulled her over or why she had to get out of the vehicle. [We’ve all heard stories about law enforcement officers or people pretending to be law enforcement officers pulling over young women and then sexually assaulting them.] He didn’t identify himself, so for all she knew he could have been a fake —she had no clue!!
He then yanked open her car door, grabbed her arm and forcibly pulled her out of the car. (Her car doors automatically unlock when her car is turned off.) When she was out the car he ordered her to put her hands behind her back and face towards the trunk of her car, keeping her back towards him. He then told her to face the hood of his patrol car which she did. While she was facing the hood of his patrol car, she heard him take out his handcuffs. That’s when she really started questioning, “Why am I being handcuffed?” “Why am I being arrested?” “Wait, what am I being arrested for?” “What did I do?” He ignored her. He never once answered her questions. He got her left hand in the handcuffs first as she was trying to look back at him and get an answer as to why she was being arrested. He proceeded to try and put her right hand in the cuffs as well. However, the way he had her arm angled he was unable to put the cuff on. She was telling him to please wait because it hurt. At that moment he threw her to the ground by her jacket and she was laying face down on the sidewalk while he was on top of her with his knee in her back. She started screaming at the top of her lungs, “Help, Somebody Help Me, Please!!!!!” She thought the man was crazy. He still had not told her what he was arresting her for. He threw her down like she was a man/criminal or something. She is a college graduate who weighs all of 110 lbs. As she was screaming at the top of her lungs, she heard him get on his radio and call for backup. Within seconds a handful of patrol cars, including officers from the Inglewood Police Department, came to the scene.
The officers (all males) got out of their cars and ran to where they were. They came ready to attack, and they were all on her, grabbing her arms and legs and while she was still screaming loudly one officer put his hand around her neck in a c-cup position and began choking the life out of her. He was squeezing tightly and would not let go. She thought she was going to lose consciousness and possibly die right there on Century Blvd. She figured he was doing this to stop her from screaming so loudly. While he had her in a choke hold she was able to turn her head and get a good look at the deputy’s face. They made eye contact. She knows exactly what he looks like. After a lot of squirming and kicking trying to get out of his grasp because she could not breathe, he finally let go of her throat. All of the officers grabbed her by her clothes and hair, stood her up and tried to push her into the passenger side of the patrol car. At this point she was in handcuffs. As she was being forcibly guided to the patrol car she turned and asked, “Who the hell was choking me, I want to know the name of the officer who choked me?” It was at that moment that she was pepper sprayed at a very close range; she felt the stream rather than the mist of the spray. She knew she had been sprayed so that she could not get the name of the deputy who’d choked her. After she was sprayed she really started to scream because she couldn’t see and her face was on fire. The officers just kept yelling at her to get into the ‘fu**in’ car. She was kicking her legs and fighting for her life. She did not want to be closed up in the patrol car because she could not see nor breathe. She needed air badly. She truly thought she was going to die in their custody.
Once inside the patrol car she was pepper sprayed again. The officers then closed the doors and windows and left her inside the vehicle with no air to breathe at all, just the pepper spray. She began screaming and kicking the door begging the officers to roll down the windows or open a door. When the officers did open the door it was only to tie her feet together with a rope like thing and close the door with the end of the rope on the outside of the door, with them holding onto it so her leg movement was constricted. She still needed air so she was still screaming. Finally an officer opened the door and rolled down her window about 2 inches and closed the door back. It was then the officers threatened to tase her if she didn’t shut up.
This is just a portion of the HELL and BRUTALITY she experienced at the hands of the Lennox Sheriff Deputies and Inglewood Police Officers. She has endured the pain and suffering of a beating, she was arrested, humiliated, disrespected, and then found guilty by her employers at the Los Angeles Police Department when she was fired without a hearing, trial, and/or just cause.
After more than a year of stress, fear, and sleepless nights her case finally went before a jury in June 2008. Right before trial, the judge dismissed the resisting arrest and battery on police officer charges, based on the fact that the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department and the Inglewood Police Department refused to give her attorney all the reports and documents the judge had ordered them to produce. The Inglewood Police Department went so far as to say that the Inglewood officers had not prepared any report at all in connection with their role in illegally assaulting, battering, and falsely imprisoning my niece, even though they are mentioned in the Los Angeles Sheriff Department’s reports and they took the time to make statements against my niece in the Los Angeles Police Department disciplinary process against her.
The remaining charges of reckless driving and possession of a small (less than .3 gram), unlit marijuana cigarette which her girl friend admitted she had accidentally left the cigarette in my niece’s automobile was heard on June 9th, 2008 at the Torrance Courthouse in Torrance, CA. My niece was found NOT GUILTY of the reckless driving charge and the jury stated afterwards that the only reason she was found guilty of the marijuana possession was because she didn’t deny that it was in her car.
The arresting deputy who initiated the original false arrest, the person who grabbed her, shoved her, handcuffed her, kneed her and assisted in choking and pepper spraying her was found to be unbelievable and dishonest by the jury. The deputy’s name is Christopher Maurizi. Deputy (newly promoted to Detective) Christopher Maurizi is the son of Jan Maurizi, a high ranking official in the District Attorney’s Office of the County of Los Angeles. It is because of who he is and his mother’s rank within the DA’s office, that this matter has continued on as it has.
Although she has been found NOT GUILTY of the reckless driving charge (which was the only reason for stopping her in the 1st place), the District Attorney’s Office has initiated an expensive and time consuming appeal of the 3 charges that were dismissed by the Inglewood pretrial judge which were: 1 count of resisting an executive order and 2 counts of battery on an officer. I believe my niece is still being singled out and harassed by the LA County District Attorney’s Office and by her former employer The Los Angeles Police Department.
As of today’s date, I estimate that over 6,700 hours of man power at a cost of over $500,000 have been spent by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office in an effort to single out and prosecute my niece on a misdemeanor charge and this does not include the thousands of dollars that have been spent by me and my family in my niece’s defense, not to mention the thousands of taxpayer dollars that are still being spent on this useless appeal which had a hearing date of March 12, 2009.
THIS MUST BE DOCUMENTED, THIS MUST BE REPORTED AND THIS MUST BE MADE PUBLIC!