Featured Articles
FBI: All your emails belong to us E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

Do you use email? Of course you do. Just about everyone does. Should the federal government be able to read your emails without a warrant? Of course not. But they are doing just that. According to an article in the New York Times, a court case currently playing out between a businessman and the feds provides interesting insights into the “post 9/11 world.” According to the Times, a federal judge has unsealed documents in a case involving the owner of the encrypted email service provider, Lavabit, which former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden was using. The case has been unfolding since last May.

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DHS "undercover" snares Marine in sex sting E-mail
Written by Jose Torres   

There are clearly some issues with mental health and the law enforcement profession. But as challenging as dealing with issues like depression, addiction and anger management affecting public safety professionals might be, it’s nothing compared to the mental health crisis among US military personnel. The fact that it takes more than a year for many vets to receive and audience with the VA is obviously not helping. But even if we did provide adequate health care for our soldiers the fact remains that a shortsighted reduction in standards for recruits has had a disastrous impact on morale.

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Won't get fooled again! Wanna bet? E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

People like to talk about the “crime of the century.” Was it the Lufthansa heist? The Gardner Museum robbery? Maybe it was Capone’s $2 billion made off prohibition. While those scores are all impressive in their own way, they’re actually small potatoes. The crime of the century, for which not a solitary soul has been sent to jail, was the fleecing of public pension funds by Wall Street money men. Not only did the bad guys get away clean, they’re about to do it again.

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80,000 volt "stun cuffs" E-mail
Written by Jose Torres   

According to an article posted at Raw Story, the Sheriff’s Department in Buchanan County, Missouri has begun using 80,000-volt enhanced handcuffs for prisoner transfers and some court appearances. While many are concerned about the safety of the devices, KQTV-TV reported that sheriff’s officials aren’t concerned that the devices might be dangerous.

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Pay cuts make recruitment a long shot E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

In the old days, hiring more cops wasn’t the kind of thing that people got too worked up over. But that was then and this is now. In Miami, Florida the battle over hiring more cops versus restoring lost benefits is getting pretty heated. City officials and police union leaders are ratcheting up the rhetoric in a high-stakes fight to the finish.

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Sheriff versus prosecutor E-mail
Written by Jose Torres   

In Ohio, a storm is brewing. But it’s not a hurricane or a tornado. It’s a war of words between the sheriff and the county prosecutor. According to a recent article from the Athens News, Athens County Sheriff Pat Kelly has blasted county Prosecutor Keller Blackburn, for telling the sheriff that there is no legal basis to quash a subpoena the sheriff wants done away with. The prosecutor told the sheriff he’s not about to serve as Kelly's personal defense attorney. Firing back, Kelly has suggested that Blackburn is “immature” and won’t kill the subpoena because of personal feelings.

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Judge orders new trial for cops E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

According to FOX News, a federal judge has ordered a new trial for five former New Orleans police officers convicted of civil rights violations stemming from deadly shootings on a bridge after Hurricane Katrina, concluding the case had been tainted by "grotesque prosecutorial misconduct." U.S. District Judge Kurt Engelhardt said at least three government attorneys posted anonymous comments on a New Orleans newspaper's website that created a "carnival atmosphere" that rendered a fair trial unlikely.

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Navy Yard security called terrible E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

Another day, another mass shooting. Network news anchors relying on Twitter were identifying suspects and then retracting those statement minutes later. The gun rights crowd and the gun-grabbers are already at fever pitch. It’s all very familiar. But according to an article by James Rosen from McClatchy Washington Bureau, one subject that should be getting attention will most likely be lost in the culture war shuffle- basic security protocols at the facility. According to Mr. Rosen’s article, “The Washington Navy Yard, a former shipyard where Monday’s fatal shootings occurred, has a history of weak security with past reports citing poor entrance controls, video dead spots, inadequate lighting, malfunctioning alarms and other problems.”

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Two cops shot at Washington Navy Yard E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

According to the Washington Post, police now believe two shooters, including one in fatigues, have killed four people and wounded eight others, including two cops, at the Washington Navy Yard. Police have so far said that one of the shooters is “down,” but it was unclear whether that means the suspect has been apprehended or shot.

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Cops sue job and win big E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

Anyone that knows anything about law enforcement knows that one of the biggest headaches in the game is lawsuits. But while most cops are quick to lament the monies paid out to claimants that have alleged police misconduct, there is another massive expenditure associated with lawsuits and public safety. Those are the payouts made to police officers that have sued their departments.
In Los Angeles for example, the city has paid out about $110 million in jury awards and settlements for lawsuits that police officers have brought against the Police Department over a six-year period.

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Immigration activists and crime E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

What do Shawna Forde, J.T. Ready and Chris Simcox have in common? The answer to the riddle is that they’re all anti-immigration activists and they’re all in or have been in trouble with the law. Simcox, 52, is the co-founder of the Minutemen civilian border patrol group. He’s been arrested  and booked into a Maricopa County jail in connection with the molestation of three girls under the age of 10, said Sergeant Tommy Thompson, a Phoenix police spokesman.

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New gun laws bring chaos E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

In Missouri, some law enforcement officials are expressing their displeasure and frustration with new laws that would make it a crime for police to enforce gun bans or restrictions. In New York sate on the other hand many sheriffs are saying plainly that they will not enforce new gun laws there. According to a recent article from KMOX News, St. Louis County Police Chief Tim Fitch urged House Republicans to not override Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto of HB 436. Fitch wrote a letter to Missouri House Speaker Tim Jones, R-Eureka letting him know where he stood.

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How about a heads up guys? E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

One of the things that really bothers local law enforcement professionals is when a federal agency stages some kind of operation or another without doing the locals the basic courtesy of letting them know they’ll be in town at such and such and address at such and such time. Considering the number of strong-arm robberies committed these days by those dressed up as cops or federal agents, letting the cops know where and when they’ll be in town isn’t just professional courtesy- it can be an officer safety issue.

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Save the gun laws are here E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

According to multiple media reports, a new law going into effect this week in North Carolina law will prevent law enforcement officials from destroying unclaimed guns and firearms acquired through gun buyback programs. The "save the gun" law passed the state legislature in the spring as North Carolina strengthened gun rights protections in the wake of the Newtown, Conn., school shooting.

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He's soft on crime and proud of it E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

The criminal justice system is in dire need of reform. And while Attorney General Eric Holder has been talking recently about reducing the obscene numbers of non-violent “drug offenders” behind bars in the U.S., there are even more pressing issues. The United States has an international reputation for locking up a higher percentage of its population than any country on Earth and we’re known for our passionate “tough on crime” approach to criminal justice. So can someone please explain why a teacher that raped a student, who later killed herself, only got a 30-day sentence?

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Cut pensions to punish corrupt cops? E-mail
Written by APB Staff   

In the UK, members of Parliament, reacting to a spate of police corruption allegations and other scandals, have recommended that a scale of fines be introduced for police misconduct. For cops who commit serious offenses, the MPs recommended that the recently-formed professional standards body, the College of Policing, should "establish a scale of fines which should be docked from officers' pensions in cases of the most grave misconduct."

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Paper terrorists are everywhere E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

Maybe one of the reasons Lady Justice is wearing the blindfold is because she doesn’t want to see who’s using the system as a weapon. If you read American Police Beat you already know about so-called sovereign citizens and the deadly threat they pose to law enforcement professionals. But high-powered weapons are just one the threats. Another is death by paperwork and legal fees.
According to a recent article in the New York Times, one sheriff in Minnesota recently learned about “paper terrorism” the hard way.

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WTF people? E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

If you’re a police chief or sheriff at a large agency, you know that keeping track of what it is that all of your people are up to can be a daunting challenge. But just imagine what it’s like at an agency with more than 250,000 employees. According to a recent article posted on the website Gawker, Ayo Kimathi works as a small business specialist for the Department of Homeland Security.
When he goes home, he allegedly runs a website called War on the Horizon. It’s basically like a Stormfront for homophobic black nationalists.

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FBI raids sheriff's office E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

According to an article in USA Today, FBI agents recently searched the Philadelphia Sheriff's Office and seized unspecified files and other records. According to the article, Joe Blake, a spokesman for Sheriff Jewell Williams, said in a statement that agents served search warrants and subpoenas "as part of an ongoing investigation begun in the previous administration" of John Green, who resigned in January 2011 amid corruption allegations and an audit of his department's finances.

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Top 10 signs your new partner is juicing E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

1. He showed no emotion after the shoot out but he frequently bursts out crying during sappy radio commercials for life insurance.
2. He’s gone from no-bra size to a full B.

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Can't we all just get along? E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

According to an article posted on the news site Phillipstown.info, Putnam County, New York District Attorney Adam Levy is taking the increasingly high stakes feud between himself and Putnam County Sheriff Donald B. Smith into State Supreme Court. Some locals say that in doing so Levy has set the temperature on the oven of eastern Putnam Republican politics to “ broil.” Reporters described Levy as “agitated and angry” during a recent press conference.

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