Seriously Injured in 2001 Police Beating, Victim’s $1.2 Million Judgment Will Stand

Qualified Immunity Claim

By Officers in 2001 Beating

Rejected By Appeals Court

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled three Metropolitan Police Department officers must pay $1.6 million for using excessive force on Charles “Chuck”  Barnard back in 2001. The court rejected the officers’ claims of “qualified immunity.”

The ruling stems from a  Dec. 8, 2001 incident which began when  Barnard heard the distinct knock of the police on his door. Confident in the knowledge he had done nothing wrong, the former Marine opened the door and was immediately confronted by Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Officers Steven Radmanovich, Greg Theobald and Gary Clark. The officers were not looking for Barnard, but were trying to serve an arrest warrant on his brother. 

Not wanting to get caught up in whatever it was they thought his brother had done, Barnard immediately told the officers he would cooperate in any way he could. With his hands raised, Barnard was escorted from his apartment by Theobald, while the other officers began to enter the apartment looking for Barnard’s brother.

LVMPD's Greg Theobald

LVMPD’s Greg Theobald

Despite the fact Barnard had committed no crime and was fully cooperating with officers, Theobald began to handcuff him. That’s when things went horribly wrong. Apparently unable to focus on both handcuffing the innocent Barnard and watch where he was walking, Theobald tripped over a large flower pot sitting in front of the apartment. Rather than accept responsibility for his own clumsiness, Theobald began to treat Barnard as if he had caused him to fall. Mistaking Theobald’s inability to watch where he was walking for Barnard’s resisting arrest, all three officers began attacking Barnard. They coated him with  pepper-spray. One officer wedged a knee into his neck while employing a controversial choke-hold.

As a result of the incident Barnard was seriously injured, forced to undergo four spinal fusion surgeries and will most likely spend the rest of his life in constant pain. While the investigation conducted by Metro cleared the officers of any wrongdoing, a federal jury found that the officers had violated Barnard’s civil rights and awarded him $2.1 Million. A judge subsequently reduced the award to $1.6 million, which the  officers appealed, claiming they had “qualified immunity,”

Qualified Immunity shields government officials from civil liability if a reasonable person would not consider their conduct a violation of constitutional rights.  In a 21-page ruling the 9th Circuit Court denied the officers appeal, stating:

“a reasonable officer would have known it violated clearly established law to use a chokehold on a non-resisting arrestee who had surrendered, pepper-spray him and apply such knee pressure on his neck and back that it would cause the collapse of five vertebrae in his cervical spine.”

radmon

Steven Radmanovich

Theobald, the only officer still working with Metro, was one of three officers involved in the February 1, 2012 fatal shooting of 23-year-old Jason Baires. Theobald was shot in the hip during an exchange of gunfire which erupted when officers attempted to arrest Baires for the gruesome murder of his mother’s boyfriend. In 2012 Theobald salary and benefits cost taxpayers $149,342.65.

Radmanovich left Metro and joined the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office in mid 2012. Prior to moving to Winnemucca, Radmanovich cost Clark County taxpayers $97,635.78 in salary and benefits.

“Out of the Mouths of Babes”

 “Because I have the right to.”

 Suddenly We’re Not So Afraid

For the Future of America

I’m just sorry it took us this long to uncover this YouTube video of a Las Vegas Metro Police officer and a 12-year-old boy named Jeremy Drew  who outed him for the coward he is.

KVVU Fox 5 has the full story.

Where We Learn When Being Rear-ended Is Your Fault

The Question Remains;

How Many Metro Officers Abusing Authority

Before We Kill The “Few Bad Apples” Conceit?

On February 16th, 2013, JohnPaul Rosario was riding his motorcycle to work at the Planet Hollywood when he was hit from behind by another vehicle. The Nevada Revised Statutes are very clear on the matter:

NRS 484B.127  Following too closely.

1.The driver of a vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard for the speed of such vehicles and the traffic upon and the condition of the highway.

Describing the contact as a mere “love tap,” Rosario expected, as most of us would, an expression of concern from the offending driver. A simple, “Are you okay,” would be the response of most civilized individuals.

Unfortunately for Rosario, that wasn’t the way one would describe the other motorist. The most accurate description? He was one of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department’s finest.

Is anyone surprised at this officer’s behavior? In a culture supportive of perjury, whose officers feel free to disobey orders and endanger innocent drivers and where shooting unarmed citizens in the back is just part of the job, should we be shocked when an officer threatens to falsely accuse someone of a crime in order to get out of a minor finder bender?

Rosario has been promised an investigation is being conducted, but as of today, Metro can’t even identify the officer.

Uniformed Sexual Predators — Metro Officer Turned Sex Offender Sentenced to Two Years

“You are nothing short of…

… a sexual predator with a badge.”

-Judge Abbey Silver

John Norman,  who resigned from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department after being charges were made by two women that they were forced to expose themselves to the officer during traffic stops, was sentenced to two years.

John Norman, "sexual predator with a badge."

John Norman, “sexual predator with a badge.”

Originally facing multiple charges, including 8 felonies, the two-year sentence was the most Judge Abbey Silver could impose after Norman pleaded guilty to 2 gross misdemeanors as part of  plea agreement with prosecutors. At the request of this two victims  Silver also order Norman must register as a sex offender.

After affirming his guilty pleas to the crimes of oppression under the color of office and open or gross lewdness, Norman told the court was never his intent to make  the victims feel threatened. However he went on to refer to himself as the true victim.

“The media has painted me as a monster out there lurking in the dark and violating women’s rights and other people’s rights,” Norman told the court, completely unaware of the damage he had done to his victims.

Clark County Judge Abbi Silver.

Clark County Judge Abbi Silver

“He ridiculed me. He humiliated me. He abused his authority. He knew what he was doing,” one victim tearfully testified. Both women told the court their experiences have given them a fear uniformed police officers.

Norman was represented by former Clark County District Attorney David Roger, who resigned last year to work for the Las Vegas Police Protective Association. The charges against Norman were filed less than one month after Roger left office last year.

These charges stemmed from allegations by two woman who claim Norman forced them, on separate occasions, to expose their breasts. One of the women also alleges he groped her breasts as well. After Norman’s arrest was made public, two other women came forward accusing  Norman of misconduct during similar traffic stops.

Assistant Sheriff Ray Flynn says the new allegations didn’t meet the standard to warrant criminal charges, but were investigated by detectives to determine if Norman had broken internal regulations along the lines of conduct unbecoming of an officer. Before that investigation was concluded, Norman resigned.

In 2011 Norman was paid $104,419.15 in total pay and benefits.