Saturday, April 22, 2017

04222017 - Portage Indiana police officer involved shooting - William D. Spates killed during traffic stop






PORTAGE SHOOTING
UPDATE: Portage shooting victim had been released from jail just hours before incident
NWI Times
Apr 24, 2017  - 8:00PM
http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/update-portage-shooting-victim-had-been-released-from-jail-just/article_fd7c729b-50c8-5f69-8f55-6951993fb246.html

PORTAGE — William D. Spates had been out of jail for just over three hours when he was killed in an officer-involved shooting Saturday morning.

Spates, of the 2700 block of Brown Street, was arrested Tuesday, April 19 and accused of battering his wife and two children.

Spates, who has a long history of arrests in both Lake and Porter counties according to court records, was charged with felony counts of strangulation and domestic battery and two misdemeanor counts of battery. He was transported to a local hospital for breathing problems and then transported to Porter County Jail.

Porter County Sheriff's Department spokesperson Sgt. Jamie Erow said Spates was released from jail on bond at 10:29 p.m. Friday. A 10-day no-contact order had been issued when he was arrested. His home is just around the corner from where the shooting occurred.

Additional details of the shooting were released by the Porter County Sheriff's Office Monday that indicated Spates attempted to run over Portage police Officer Grant Crizer during a traffic stop in the driveway of a home in the 5200 block of Royal Avenue.

Crizer made a traffic stop on a blue 2004 Jeep Liberty at approximately 1:47 a.m. Saturday. Spates pulled into the driveway on Royal Avenue. At some point the suspect put his vehicle into reverse and accelerated rapidly into the officer’s fully-marked squad car, striking it, police said. Witnesses initially reported hearing the officer yelling commands to the driver, and an engine revving, followed by six to seven shots fired, according to a news release from Erow.

Erow said she could not specifically answer as to whether or not all the shots were fired by Crizer or if Spates had a weapon. She said that is still under investigation.

"However, I can relay that evidence at the scene and witness statements show a Taser was deployed prior to shots being fired," she said.

According to the Porter County Central Communications incident history for the event, Crizer reported shots fired and that he needed another unit. He told dispatch that his vehicle was struck and the subject tried to run him over. He requested EMS step up their response. Another officer arrived on scene, helping to pull Spates from the vehicle and immediately began rendering aid with his tactical first aid kit. Portage EMS arrived on scene and pronounced Spates dead.

Portage Police Chief Troy Williams said Crizer, 34, has been put on paid administrative leave.

Crizer was hired by the Portage Police Department on Aug. 17, 2014. He had previously served on the Lake Station Police Department since January 2008.

"Officer Crizer has had no disciplinary incidents with the Portage Police Department. He has received one chief’s letter of commendation and was selected to serve on the department’s SWAT Team," said Williams in a news release.

Porter County Coroner Chuck Harris said in the release Monday that an autopsy was performed on Spates, 39, over the weekend. The results revealed that Spates received multiple gunshot wounds to the torso and head, leading to his death.

Harris said toxicology results are pending.

Erow said detectives and crime scene investigators with her department and the Indiana State Police worked throughout the weekend and are still investigating.        










Man Fatally Shot By Police Hours After Bonding Out of Jail
NBC Chicago
April 24, 2017
http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/Man-Fatally-Shot-By-Police-3-Hours-After-Bonding-Out-of-Jail-420285513.html
A police officer fatally shot a man Saturday during a traffic stop in Portage, Indiana, after the suspect rammed into the officer’s vehicle and “tried to run him over,” the department’s police chief says.

Officer Grant Crizer stopped a blue 2004 Jeep Liberty about 1:47 a.m. for expired registration, police said. The vehicle pulled into a driveway in the 5200 block of Royal Avenue, according to police. The vehcile was driven by William D. Spates, 39, whos had bonded out of jail about three hours earlier, according to police.

“At some point during the encounter the suspect who has previously been identified as William D. Spates (age 39) put his vehicle into reverse and rammed our officer’s fully marked squad car,” Portage police Chief Troy Williams said Monday in a news release. “Officer Crizer radioed that shots had been fired, he needed another unit and that the suspect tried to run him over. Additionally, Officer Crizer requested medics and then moments later requested they step it up.”

Witnesses to the shooting heard an officer yelling commands to the driver, a revving engine and then six to seven gunshots, according to the Porter County Sheriff's Department, which is investigating the shooting.

"Another officer arrived on scene helping to pull the subject from the vehicle and immediately began rendering aid with his tactical first-aid kit," the sheriff's department said in a Facebook post.

Medics arrived on the scene shortly after but Spates was pronounced dead, Williams said.

Spates’ driver’s license was “suspended-prior with 12 active suspensions,” according to Williams. He said police had previously responded to Spates’ home on April 19 for a disturbance, after which Spates was charged with strangulation, domestic batter and battery. Spates was held in Porter county Jail and issued a 10-day no contact order and bonded out April 21 about 10:29 p.m.

The Times of Northwest Indiana reports Spates’ home was just around the corner from where he was shot. A Taser was reportedly used on Spates and it was unclear if he was armed or not, the paper reported, citing police.

A booking photo of Spates was used by authorities to identify him after he was shot, the sheriff's office said.

Crizer, 34, was hired at the Portage Police Department in August of 2014 after working at the Lake Station Police Department since January 2008, Williams said. Crizer has had no disciplinary incidents with Portage police and serves on the department’s SWAT team.

"Officer Crizer also received the department’s Exceptional Service Award for his part in the apprehension without incident of an intoxicated driver on August 31, 2015 in which the suspect pointed his hand in the shape of gun at Officer Crizer and another officer and yelled, 'Gun,'" Williams said.

Crizer was placed on paid administrative leave which is standard procedure after an officer-involved shooting, Williams said.

The Porter County Coroner conducted an autopsy on Spates listing the cause of death as multiple gunshot wounds. A toxicology report was pending.

Detectives from the Porter County Sheriff’s Department and the Indiana State Police were investigating the shooting.










Coroner: Man Killed in Portage traffic stop shot in 'torso and head'
Chicago Tribune
April 24, 2017 - 7:03PM

A 39-year-old Portage man killed near his home in an officer-involved shooting early Saturday, just hours after he was released from jail, suffered "multiple gunshot injuries to the torso and head," according to the Porter County Coroner's office.

William D. Spates had been released from the Porter County Jail after posting bond just before 10:30 p.m. Friday, according to a press release. He was shot and killed just a little more than three hours later during a traffic stop in the 5200 block of Roylal Avenue, authorities said.

Spates had been arrested Wednesday after an incident at his home and charged with strangulation and domestic battery, both felonies, and two misdemeanor counts of battery, according to the release. A 10-day no contact order had been issued against him, prohibiting him from going to his house during that time, according to Porter County Jail records.

The officer involved in the shooting, who authorities identified as Grant Crizer, 34, was put on paid administrative leave, which is standard protocol for officers involved in shootings, Chief Troy Williams said. Crizer, who had been with the department since Aug. 17, 2014, had no disciplinary incidents during his time with the Portage police department, according to the release.

It was unclear why Crizer stopped the 2004 Jeep Liberty Spates was driving just before 1:50 a.m. Saturday.

A press release from the Portage police said the vehicle's registration was expired, but did not cite that as the reason for the stop. The Porter County Sheriff's office said late Monday that detectives had not yet interviewed Crizer.

"The reason for the traffic stop can not be determined until they speak with the officer that initiated that traffic stop," Sgt. Jamie Erow, sheriff's office spokeswoman, said. "I do not know one way or another if the plates were expired."

Spate's vehicle pulled into a driveway on Royal Avenue, according to a release Monday from Portage police. At some point, Spates put his vehicle in reverse, "accelerated rapidly" and "rammed our officer's fully marked squad car," according to releases from Portage police and the Porter County Sheriff's office.

The sheriff's office declined to elaborate Monday whether Spates and Crizer exchanged words before the shooting.

"This is still an ongoing investigation and can take weeks to complete," the sheriff's office said in a release.

Nevertheless, Erow said there was evidence that a stun gun had been deployed.

"Witnesses initially reported hearing the officer yelling commands to the driver and an engine revving, followed by six to seven shots fired," according to the sheriff's office release.

Crizer "radioed that shots had been fired, he needed another unit and that the suspect tried to run him over," according to a release. Crizer also requested medics and told EMS to "step up their response," according to the sheriff's office.

Another officer arrived on scene and performed first aid, but Spates was pronounced dead shortly after Portage EMS arrived on scene, the release states. Williams was informed and asked Porter County Sheriff's Department at about 2:05 a.m. to conduct an investigation into the officer-involved shooting, and Indiana State Police were also called to investigate, according to the releases.

Additionally, police determined that at the time of the traffic stop, Spates had a suspended license, according to police.

There is no body cam or dashboard recordings from the incident, as Portage police do not have that technology, Williams said.

Monday afternoon, neighbors around the scene of the shooting were out mowing their yards and coming and going from their homes. Any presence of police or crime scene tape was gone from the tree-lined Royal Avenue, which is a block long and dead ends, where the shooting occurred.

A neighbor on a perpendicular street a handful of houses away, Alma Rempis, said she saw the police lights from her window the night of the shooting. When she took her dog for a walk hours after the shooting, she said the smell of sulfur from the gunshots was still in the air.

Spates' home is just around the corner from the scene on Brown Street, about four houses away. Rempis, who has lived across the street for four years, said Spates had lived there for a handful of months before the incident.

Spates' wife did not comment Monday when reached by the Post-Tribune.

Porter County Coroner Chuck Harris said in a press release that William Spates' toxicology reports are still pending.

Before joining the Portage department, Crizer worked at the the Lake Station Police Department since January 2008, according to a release from Portage police.

Portage police noted in a release that in Crizer's time in working for the police department, he was selected to serve on the department's SWAT team, had one chief's letter of commendation and received the department's Exception Service Award for his part in the apprehension without incident of an intoxicated driver on Aug. 31, 2015, "in which the suspect pointed his hand in the shape of a gun at Officer Crizer and another officer and yelled 'gun.'"

"Despite any rush of adrenaline he might have been experiencing at the time, Officer Crizer was able to recognize the driver did not in fact have a gun in his hands," instead using a stun gun, according to the letter attached to the release from police.

Lake Station Police Chief David Johnson said in an email that Crizer did not have any disciplinary incidents while working for the department and "he was a good officer in his time here."











UPDATE: Portage man died of 'multiple' gunshot wounds
NWI Times
April 24, 2017 - 2:50PM
http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/update-portage-man-died-of-multiple-gunshot-wounds/article_fd7c729b-50c8-5f69-8f55-6951993fb246.html

PORTAGE — The investigation into what happened in the early morning hours Saturday that led to an officer involved shooting and the death of a Portage man is still ongoing.

Additional details, however, were released by the Porter County Sheriff's office Monday morning that indicated William D. Spates, 39, of Portage may have attempted to run over Portage police Officer Grant Crizer during a traffic stop in the driveway of a home in the 5200 block of Royal Avenue.

Crizer made a traffic stop on a blue 2004 Jeep Liberty. Spates pulled into the driveway on Royal Avenue. At some point the suspect put his vehicle into reverse and accelerated rapidly into the officer’s fully-marked squad car, striking it. Witnesses initially reported hearing the officer yelling commands to the driver, and an engine revving, followed by six to seven shots fired, according to a press release from Porter County sheriff's office public information officer Sgt. Jamie Erow.

Erow said she could not specifically answer as to whether or not all the shots were fired by Crizer or if Spates had a weapon. She said that is still under investigation.

"However I can relay that evidence at the scene and witness statements show a Taser was deployed prior to shots being fired," she said.

According to the Porter County Central Communications incident history for the event, Crizer reported shots fired and he needed another unit. He told dispatch that his vehicle was struck and the subject tried to run him over. He requested EMS step up their response. Another officer arrived on scene helping to pull Spates from the vehicle and immediately began rendering aid with his tactical first-aid kit. Portage EMS arrived on scene and pronounced Spates dead.

Porter County Coroner Chuck Harris said in the release Monday that an autopsy was performed on Spates, 39, over the weekend. The results revealed that Spates received multiple gunshot wounds to the torso and head, leading to his death.

Harris said toxicology results are pending.

Erow said detectives and crime scene investigators with her department and the Indiana State Police worked throughout the weekend and are still investigating.

She directed any questions about the officer's status to Portage Police Chief Troy Williams. Williams wasn't immediately available for comment Monday morning.

Erow did confirm that Spates was arrested by Portage police at his home in the 2700 block of Brown Street Tuesday evening. The home is just around the corner from the shooting incident.

Spates, who has a long history of arrests in both Lake and Porter counties, according to court records, was charged with felony counts of strangulation and domestic battery and two misdemeanor counts of battery. He was accused of battering his wife and two children during an argument. He was transported to a local hospital for breathing problems and then transported to Porter County Jail.

Records indicate he was bonded out on Friday, April 21 at 10:29 p.m., said Erow.










UPDATE: Name in Portage fatal police-involved shooting released
NWI Times
April 24, 2017




PORTAGE — A Portage man is dead following an officer-involved shooting early Saturday morning. 

Roger Dunn said the sound of “five or six” gunshots jolted him awake early in the morning, so he peered outside to get a view of the dead-end street he calls home.  

Dunn said he saw a blue Jeep in his neighbor’s driveway, the driver’s side door ajar and a person lying on the ground, their face near the driver’s side tire.

The Jeep’s rear bumper was damaged and a Portage city police squad car — on the street perpendicular to the Jeep — also appeared to be damaged. Dunn said he saw a police officer on scene with his gun raised at a man. 

That man was identified by police Saturday night as William D. Spates, 39, of Portage. 

“I didn’t recognize the car," Dunn said. "The only people who come down this road are the people who live here."

In the early afternoon hours, Dunn and his wife watched as the blue Jeep Liberty — sealed off with orange crime-scene evidence stickers — was towed away with visible bullet holes in the front windshield, he said.

Saturday's Portage city police-involved shooting in the 5300 block of Royal Avenue is being investigated by the Porter County Sheriff's Department — with assistance from Indiana State Police.

The incident occurred in a quiet side-street subdivision with several homes in the vicinity. An active crime scene Saturday had more than 20 evidence markers scattered near the Jeep and the body, and Dunn said he observed two Taser probes on the ground.

Portage Police Chief Troy Williams confirmed in a news release that a police-involved shooting occurred at approximately 1:47 a.m. in the area. A Portage officer conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle prior to the shooting and “actions by the suspect during the encounter led to the officer-involved shooting,” Williams said in the release.

Few details were released by law enforcement in the hours after the shooting. It's not yet known if the suspect involved in the traffic stop was armed with a weapon, or why police initiated the traffic stop.

Porter County Coroner Chuck Harris said he was called to the scene at 6:45 a.m. Saturday. Spates was later pronounced dead at the scene.

Harris said Saturday afternoon he had not yet determined an exact time of death.

Even after the coroner arrived, it was several hours before the body was removed from the scene, Dunn said. An autopsy and toxicology was slated to be performed early next week, Harris said. 

Roger Dunn’s wife, Tricia Dunn, said she and her husband stayed up watching the investigation unfold from the couple's front porch. She said she noticed Porter County investigators appeared to require law enforcement officials to fill out a sign-in sheet whenever entering or exiting the crime scene, cordoned off with yellow police tape.

Tricia Dunn said an ambulance arrived on scene about five to 10 minutes after the shooting and medical personnel pulled out a stretcher for transport, she said. Shortly after that, the gurney was placed back into the ambulance, without a body, and police instead waited for the coroner to arrive, Dunn said. 

Porter County sheriff’s detectives, the Crime Scene Unit, as well as state police, continued investigating the matter into Saturday afternoon. 

Williams stated Saturday night the officer involved in the shooting would be named Monday.  He also said the officer was taken to Portage Hospital where he was checked out and released. 

Valeria Thomas stood on her front porch Saturday afternoon talking with a close neighbor about what they had heard overnight. Thomas said she awoke to the sound of multiple gunshots.

"It sounded like a 'Pop, pop pop!'" she said. 

During the overnight hours, at least a dozen police cars with flashing red and blue lights could be seen lined up and down Royal Avenue.

Thomas said she moved to the subdivision in March 2016. 

"It's been quiet up until now," Thomas said. 










Man fatally shot by Portage police officer
Chicago Sun Times
April 24, 2017 - 11:05am

A man was fatally shot by a Portage police officer during a traffic stop early Saturday in northwest Indiana.

At 1:47 a.m., the officer pulled over a blue 2004 Jeep Liberty in the 5200 block of Royal Avenue in Portage, according to a statement from the Porter County sheriff’s office.

The Jeep pulled into a driveway on that block, and the driver, 39-year-old William Spates, put the vehicle in reverse and accelerated rapidly into the officer’s fully marked squad car, striking it, according to the sheriff’s office.

Witnesses reported hearing the officer yelling commands to the driver and an engine revving, followed by between six and seven shots fired.

The officer reported shots fired and requested another unit, according to the sheriff’s office. He informed dispatchers that his vehicle was struck and the man had tried to run him over, then asked EMS to step up their response.

Another officer at the scene helped pull Spates from the vehicle and rendered aid with his tactical first-aid kit, according to the sheriff’s office.

Spates, a Portage resident, was pronounced dead at the scene.

An autopsy Sunday found Spates died of multiple gunshot wounds to the torso and head, according to the Porter County coroner’s office. Toxicology results are pending.

Spates had been arrested Wednesday by Portage police and charged with felony counts of strangulation and domestic battery, and two misdemeanor counts of battery, according to the sheriff’s office. He was released on bond at 10:29 p.m. Friday.

The officer was taken to Portage Hospital, where he was treated and released.

The Porter County sheriff’s office is investigating the shooting with assistance from Indiana State Police.










One Dead After Officer Involved Shooting in Portage
NWI Gazette
April 23, 2017
http://nwigazette.com/2017/04/23/one-dead-after-officer-involved-shooting-in-portage/

A traffic stop in Portage today led to an officer firing his service revolver and killing a man according to a statement from Portage Police Chief Troy Williams. Few details are available as the case is now being investigated by the Porter County Sheriff’s Department. According to the statement from Chief Williams, “on April 22nd, 2017 at approximately 1:47 a.m. an Officer from the Portage Police Department initiated a traffic stop on a vehicle in the 5300 block of Royal Avenue. During the encounter initial reports indicate actions by the suspect ultimately led to the officer involved shooting.”

Porter County Sheriff’s Department released acknowledging that they are investigating. The victim was identified as 39 year old William D. Spates of Portage, Indiana. According to the statement from the Sheriff, the officer involved in the incident was taken to a local hospital and was “checked out and released.” Neither the officers identity nor a description of the officer’s injuries were provided at this time.

Additional details regarding the incident are expected on Monday April 24.










Man Shot, Killed By Portage Police Officer
CBS News - Chicago
April 23, 2017 - 5:44 PM 

video

CHICAGO (CBS) — 39-year-old William Spates was shot and killed by a police officer in Portage, Indiana early Sunday morning.

CBS 2’s Sandra Torres spoke to Spates’ wife on the phone. She said she is devastated and not ready to speak on camera. She did, however, give permission to a family friend to speak on her behalf.

The man close to Spates did not wish to be identified. He said Sunday would have been his 40th birthday.

“All I could think about were his babies; they’re 4, 2 and a 14-year-old. He was a good guy, he took care of his kids and his wife. It’s sad that this happened.”

Portage police say the shooting happened around 1:45 in the morning when an officer was conducting a traffic stop on Spates’ vehicle in the 5300 block of Royal Avenue. Police added that initial reports show actions by the suspect ultimately led to the officer-involved shooting.

“My husband woke up to gunshots, he said five to six,” neighbor Tricia Dunn recalls.

Dunn lives across the street from where the shooting happened.

“We were all held hostage to the investigation playing out in front of us,” she said. “They told us that it was a traffic stop that ended up in a chase. Why this man chose our road — maybe he didn’t know it was a dead end — but it didn’t end well.”

Portage police said they plan on releasing more information on Monday, including the name of the officer involved in the shooting.

Online records show Spates had a history of resisting law enforcement and drug offenses.










AUTHORITIES INVESTIGATE FATAL SHOOTING INVOLVING PORTAGE OFFICER
ABC 7 News - Chicago
Saturday, April 22, 2017 - 10:45PM



PORTAGE, Ind. -- State and county authorities in northwest Indiana are investigating a fatal shooting early Saturday involving a Portage police officer.

The shooting happened during a traffic stop at 1:47 a.m. in the 5300 block of Royal Avenue in Portage, according to Portage police.

"During the encounter initial reports indicate actions by the suspect ultimately led to the officer involved shooting," Portage police said in a statement.

William D. Spates, a 39-year-old man from Portage, Indiana, was pronounced dead at the scene, according to the Porter County sheriff's office. His family has been notified.

On Monday, Portage police will release the name of the officer involved in the shooting, the Porter County sheriff's office said. Following the incident, the officer was taken to Portage Hospital where he was treated and released.

The Porter County sheriff's office is investigating the shooting with assistance from Indiana State Police.










Man killed by Portage cop during traffic stop: police
Post-Tribune
April 22, 2017

A man was shot to death by a Portage police officer during an early Saturday morning traffic stop, Police Chief Troy Williams said in a news release.

The man was pulled over in the 5300 block of Royal Avenue about 1:45 a.m. and took actions that led to the officer shooting him, Williams said in the release. No information on what those actions were has been disclosed, and Williams did return phone calls.

The man's identification is being withheld until his family has been notified, Porter County Coroner Chuck Harris said in a news release. An autopsy and toxicology report are to be done this week, the release said.

Porter County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Sgt. Jamie Erow said the sheriff's office and the Indiana State Police are investigating, and that additional information would not be released until Monday.










UPDATE: Name in Portage fatal police-involved shooting released
NWI Times
April 22, 2017

PORTAGE — A Portage man is dead following an officer-involved shooting early Saturday morning. 

Roger Dunn said the sound of “five or six” gunshots jolted him awake early in the morning, so he peered outside to get a view of the dead-end street he calls home.  

Dunn said he saw a blue Jeep in his neighbor’s driveway, the driver’s side door ajar and a person lying on the ground, their face near the driver’s side tire.

The Jeep’s rear bumper was damaged and a Portage city police squad car — on the street perpendicular to the Jeep — also appeared to be damaged. Dunn said he saw a police officer on scene with his gun raised at a man. 

That man was identified by police Saturday night as William D. Spates, 39, of Portage. 

“I didn’t recognize the car," Dunn said. "The only people who come down this road are the people who live here."

In the early afternoon hours, Dunn and his wife watched as the blue Jeep Liberty — sealed off with orange crime-scene evidence stickers — was towed away with visible bullet holes in the front windshield, he said.

Saturday's Portage city police-involved shooting in the 5300 block of Royal Avenue is being investigated by the Porter County Sheriff's Department — with assistance from Indiana State Police.

The incident occurred in a quiet side-street subdivision with several homes in the vicinity. An active crime scene Saturday had more than 20 evidence markers scattered near the Jeep and the body, and Dunn said he observed two Taser probes on the ground.

Portage Police Chief Troy Williams confirmed in a news release that a police-involved shooting occurred at approximately 1:47 a.m. in the area. A Portage officer conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle prior to the shooting and “actions by the suspect during the encounter led to the officer-involved shooting,” Williams said in the release.

Few details were released by law enforcement in the hours after the shooting. It's not yet known if the suspect involved in the traffic stop was armed with a weapon, or why police initiated the traffic stop.

Porter County Coroner Chuck Harris said he was called to the scene at 6:45 a.m. Saturday. Spates was later pronounced dead at the scene.

Harris said Saturday afternoon he had not yet determined an exact time of death.

Even after the coroner arrived, it was several hours before the body was removed from the scene, Dunn said. An autopsy and toxicology was slated to be performed early next week, Harris said. 

Roger Dunn’s wife, Tricia Dunn, said she and her husband stayed up watching the investigation unfold from the couple's front porch. She said she noticed Porter County investigators appeared to require law enforcement officials to fill out a sign-in sheet whenever entering or exiting the crime scene, cordoned off with yellow police tape.

Tricia Dunn said an ambulance arrived on scene about five to 10 minutes after the shooting and medical personnel pulled out a stretcher for transport, she said. Shortly after that, the gurney was placed back into the ambulance, without a body, and police instead waited for the coroner to arrive, Dunn said. 

Porter County sheriff’s detectives, the Crime Scene Unit, as well as state police, continued investigating the matter into Saturday afternoon. 

Williams stated Saturday night the officer involved in the shooting would be named Monday.  He also said the officer was taken to Portage Hospital where he was checked out and released. 

Valeria Thomas stood on her front porch Saturday afternoon talking with a close neighbor about what they had heard overnight. Thomas said she awoke to the sound of multiple gunshots.

"It sounded like a 'Pop, pop pop!'" she said. 

During the overnight hours, at least a dozen police cars with flashing red and blue lights could be seen lined up and down Royal Avenue.

Thomas said she moved to the subdivision in March 2016. 

"It's been quiet up until now," Thomas said. 










Mayor: Investigation underway in Portage officer-involved shooting
NWI Times
Apr 22, 2017 

The Porter County sheriff and state police were called to investigate a shooting involving a Portage police officer early Saturday morning, the city’s mayor confirmed.

Portage Mayor James Snyder deferred all comment on details of the matter to his police Chief Troy Williams, who wasn’t immediately available for comment Saturday morning.

Snyder said the shooting occurred about 2 a.m. and that the sheriff and Indiana State Police were called to investigate a short time later.

The Indiana State Police post in Lowell confirmed the Porter County Sheriff’s Department was leading the investigation.

Follow more breaking details of this story as they become available at nwi.com.

Friday, April 21, 2017

04212017 - Lake County Sheriff John Buncich - Indicted again with additional federal charges



Federally indicted Lake County Sheriff John Buncich, facing additional federal charges:



New Charge for Sheriff Buncich
New count may indicate cooperation by Co-Defendant William “Willie” Szarmach
NWI Gazette
April 21, 2017
nwigazette.com/2017/04/21/new-charge-for-sheriff-buncich

The United States Attorney has added an additional count of bribery to the indictment of Lake County Sheriff and former Democratic Party Chair John Buncich. According to court documents, the 6 count indictment was amended today to include a seventh count of Federal Program Bribery. The indictment alleges three bribes paid to Sheriff Buncich by co-defendant William Szarmach of CSA Towing as follows:
6/18/15 $2500 cash
4/22/16 $3500 cash
8/9/16 $1000 check and $2500 cash

According to the indictment, Szarmach and “individual A”, later identified as Scott Jurgensen, paid thousands in cash and checks to the Sheriff in order to receive additional towing. The most damning allegation involves the city of Gary where the Sheriff allegedly ordered officers to make additional traffic in order to increase revenue for tow truck operators. The additional charges may indicate that co-defendant Szarmach is cooperating with federal officials. Lake County Police Chief Tim Downs has already entered a plea of guilty and is believed to be cooperating with federal authorities.

The additional charge comes a little over a week after Sheriff Buncich issued a statement proclaiming his innocence to the media. In that letter Sheriff Buncich stated “I assure you that I am absolutely innocent. I assure you that the workings of the Lake County Sheriff in all its capacities will remain ongoing in perfect working order. I look forward to my trial and the vindication that will come from it.”

Sheriff Buncich was replaced as Lake County Democratic Chair during the party’s March election. Buncich cast the tie-breaking vote to select Attorney Jim Wieser as party chair over Lake County Commissioner Mike Repay after a vote miraculously ended in a 305-305 deadlock.

All criminal defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty in a court of law. A criminal charge is not evidence of guilt.












Feds add new fraud charges to sheriff's indictment
NWI Times
Apr 21, 2017 

HAMMOND — A federal grand jury has updated a bribery indictment against Lake County Sheriff John Buncich.

The U.S. attorney's office filed a superseding indictment Friday afternoon that repeats all of the original wire fraud and bribery counts first made Nov. 17 against the sheriff, his top aide and a Lake Station towing firm's owner.

The new 14-page indictment adds two new wire fraud counts alleging Buncich made incriminating money wire transfers April 8, 2014, and Oct. 21 2014, in addition to three others in 2014 and 2015 already alleged by federal authorities.

Buncich has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial, now scheduled to begin Aug. 7 in U.S. District Court in Hammond.

The government alleges Buncich used his position as sheriff to solicit and receive bribes in the form of campaign contributions between 2014 and last fall from a number of towing firms wanting county police business.

Timothy Downs, who served as second-in-command to Buncich, also was indicted in November and already has pleaded guilty to collecting towing firm kickbacks and has agreed to testify he did it under Buncich's orders.

William “Willie” Szarmach, operator of CSA Towing of Lake Station, is pleading not guilty to allegations he paid bribes to Buncich and Downs.

This comes days after Buncich released a detailed denial of the charges against him, in which he stated, "Trust that I would never sell my office, not for any amount."

Buncich's lawyer, Bryan M. Truitt, said Friday his client stands by his earlier statement, noting the superseding indictment filed Friday came "as a complete surprise." 

"He remains absolutely adamant that he’s done nothing wrong, that he’s completely innocent ... and we look forward to proving that at trial," Truitt said. 

Truitt added Buncich would "never sell his integrity" for "just a few thousand dollars."

"And if he was really to enrich himself, there’s a lot more contracts and vendors, the jail’s (food and visitation) services ... that are far more lucrative. If he was going to shake down someone, that’s who he would shake down," Truitt said. 

The FBI raided the sheriff's home and office Nov. 10 and seized large numbers of documents. The government has disclosed it has hundreds of photographs and recordings made during months of federal surveillance of the sheriff.











Feds level 2 new fraud charges against Lake County sheriff
Chicago Tribune
April 21, 2017

Feederal authorities on Friday leveled two new fraud charges against Lake County Sheriff John Buncich.

The U.S. Attorney's office filed a new indictment against the sheriff, who was first indicted on a series of charges in November, adding new allegations of wire fraud, according to court documents. The new indictment listed wire transfers Buncich allegedly made on April 8, 2014, and Oct. 21, 2014, as the cause behind the new charges.

Buncich, former Chief of Police Timothy Downs and William Szarmach, of CSA Towing in Lake Station, were named in a multicount indictment in November alleging an illegal towing scheme in which the sheriff accepted bribes in the form of thousands of dollars in cash and donations to his campaign fund, Buncich's Boosters, according to court records.

A federal judge recently pushed back the date of the sheriff's trial because of the large volume of material defense attorneys must review to prepare for trial.

Buncich released a statement April 14 calling the charges "absurd" and vowing to fight the original federal allegations.

"For those who know me and my 45 years in law enforcement, you know that I would never compromise my integrity or professionalism and cannot be guilty of these charges; trust that I would never sell my office — not for any amount. I assure you that I am absolutely innocent," Buncich wrote.

The sheriff, whose department was in charge of deciding which companies were called for towing services, and the chief allegedly steered business toward towing operators in exchange for cash and checks, according to the indictment.

Buncich allegedly took more than $25,000 in cash bribes and $7,000 in checks from Szarmach and another towing operator identified as "Individual A," according to the indictment.

Buncich and Szarmach pleaded not guilty during their initial appearances in November.

Downs struck a plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney's office, which a federal judge has not yet accepted, admitting he allegedly cooperated with Buncich to solicit bribes from tow truck operators for favorable treatment.






Saturday, April 8, 2017

Abbi and Bailey dog tags - A picture is worth a thousand words


A couple of weeks ago, Ken and I were talking about having to go down to the jewelers and get my necklace containing Abbi's and Bailey's dog tags repaired. After wearing them 24/7 for the past six years, they have started to show their age: they need to be re-engraved -with the date 11-17-2016 added - and the chain needs to be replaced, because the clasp keeps coming undone.

To avoid doing the mad search for dog tags in the bedding in the morning - I now try to remember to remove them before heading off to bed.

So, last night I was sitting at the dining room table talking with Ken, before I headed off to bed, and I slid the chain over my head, and without looking, I placed them on dining room table. Ken got up and came around to my side of the table to grab my coffee cup, and he asked me if I realized where I had placed my dog tags.

Ken and I: "WHOA!!!"  [Doggie spirits, eh]




Sunday, March 26, 2017

Federally indicted Mayor Snyder's First Financial Mortgage Company



Just wondering aloud: How many divorce cases in which former Porter County Magistrate James Johnson refused to issue property settlements for, were the finances in  some form handled by Portage Mayor James Snyder - who seems to be very adapt at hiding money [at least from the IRS]? Just saying, dontcha know.









Friday, March 17, 2017

ABOLISH Absolute Judicial Immunity


Please sign and share Dale Trowbridge's "ABOLISH Absolute Judicial Immunity" petition.

The petition is requesting that President Trump:
SIGN AN EXECUTIVE ORDER to ABOLISH ABSOLUTE judicial immunity. 
SIGN AN EXECUTIVE ORDER for a FULL INVESTIGATION OF OUR CORRUPT JUDICIARY. 


Background on Dale Trowbridge's case: Child custody case was before Judge Eveland [Eaton County, Michigan], in which Eveland repeatedly ignored Dale's ex's abuse of their daughter. Child protective services verified the  abuse of Dale's daughter, at the hands of her ex.  

Dale was arrested immediately upon contacting Child Protective Services and  reporting Judge Eveland's  refusal to investigate child abuse allegations her ex.  She was held in the county jail on an unconstitutional $2,500,000 bond for one week, until she paid a cash $250,000 [$25,000 non-refundable] bond. 

CPS verified that Dale's daughter had endured four years of emotional, psychological, and physical abuse at the hands of her father / Dale's ex,  due to the previous custody order issued by Judge Eveland

State of Michigan found Dale's arrest to be unwarranted. All of Judge Eveland's charges against Dale were dismissed and her fingerprints and mugshot were destroyed.  Dale's daughter was returned to her, based on BOTH the Michigan State Police and Child Protective Services child abuse complaints against Dale's ex. 

Seven years later, Judge Eveland, in yet another retaliatory strike against  Dale, ordered  that $60,000 in back child support owed to her during the past 16 years to be eliminated / erased - resulting in a false over payment to Dale of $16,000 - which Judge Eveland illegally ordered to be collected through the child support system. This resulted in Dale losing her home, a large portion of her retirement savings plan, and having to file bankruptcy. 

The State of Michigan has taken  no actions against Judge Eveland's  corrupt and retaliatory actions against Dale and her daughter, as all Eveland's actions from the bench are protected under  Absolute Judicial Immunity.











Monday, March 13, 2017

US Attorney David Capp Resigns - Northern Indiana


Hopefully the new Northern Indiana US Attorney will finally tackle the problem of corrupt Porter County's officials.

Former US Attorney David Capp - during his numerous years with the federal prosecutor's office - led major efforts to stop public corruption: Operation Lights Out and Operation Restore Public Integrity. However, Capp focused his attention on Lake County, and ignored the corruption in Porter County.

While dozens of Lake County officials were indicted and prosecuted under Capp, only ONE Porter County official was indicted: Portage Mayor James Snyder . Snyder  just so happens to be a foe of former FBI and Portage Police Chief Mark Becker  - AND, Becker apparently is in tight with former US Attorney David Capp, who authorized the ONE Porter County corruption indictment, which just so happened to be against Becker's foe: Snyder ... Just saying, eh. 







US Attorney David Capp served with integrity and skill. A high bar has been set
Chicago Tribune
March 17, 2017
http://www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/post-tribune/opinion/ct-ptb-editorial-us-attorney-st-0319-20170317-story.html


U.S Attorney David Capp's resignation last week came as no surprise, given President Donald Trump's upset victory in November. That's the political nature of the landscape when parties change in White House administrations.

Capp, a career prosecutor who intended to retire in June, leaves behind an impressive legacy of bipartisan service underlined by a fervent commitment to justice.

A 1968 Gary Lew Wallace graduate, Capp served as the region's top crime fighter since 2007, when his predecessor, Joseph Van Bokkelen, became a federal judge. Capp was sacked last week with 45 other U.S. attorneys by order of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

Capp was serving as top deputy under Van Bokkelen when former president George W. Bush tapped him as interim U.S. attorney after Van Bokkelen's resignation. Former president Barack Obama took Capp's interim tag off in 2009 when he named him U.S. attorney for Indiana's Northern District, based in Hammond.

Before his appointment, Capp toiled 23 years under Republican and Democratic administrations showing no aversion to prosecuting corrupt Democratic politicians.

Capp led efforts such as Operation Lights Out and Operation Restore Public Integrity to root out crooked politicians who usually wound up as guests in federal prisons.

In recent years, Capp's office joined with local police, and agencies across the Illinois state line, to go after violent street gangs such as the Imperial Gangsters and Latin Kings, who operated primarily in Northwest Indiana.

Capp remained visible in the region, speaking to local groups about the work his office was doing to fight crime. Last year, he said the 56 members of the Latin Kings and Imperial Gangsters arrested by his office were responsible for 36 homicides.

Late last year, Capp announced stunning indictments against Lake County Sheriff John Buncich and Portage Mayor James Snyder on unrelated corruption charges tied to towing schemes. Those cases will now move forward after Capp departs.

Last year, former Lake Station mayor Keith Soderquist went to prison for improperly taking money from his campaign fund and the city's food pantry account to gamble at casinos.

Capp has also successfully prosecuted a host of Lake County Democratic elected officials including former East Chicago Mayor George Pabey, former Lake County surveyor George Van Til, former Lake County clerk Tom Philpot and former Gary city council members Ronier Scott and the late Marilyn Krusas.

Capp's departure comes sadly as the country is politically polarized and torn. Gary native Clifford Johnson, a federal prosecutor in South Bend, has been named interim U.S. attorney until Trump makes a permanent choice.

It's unclear who Trump might name to succeed Capp, but since the Jimmy Carter administration, the U.S. attorney appointee has come from Lake or Porter counties. U.S. Sen. Todd Young is leading the search.

Capp's successor has an illustrious blueprint to follow. The bar is set high. We hope the next U.S. attorney should be up to the challenge.










EDITORIAL: Successor should follow Capp's NWI justice model
NWI Times
March 15, 2017
http://www.nwitimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-successor-should-follow-capp-s-nwi-justice-model/article_6a9d29d2-56d0-57da-a02c-a84f27fcae9b.html


Politics may be affecting change at the helm of the Hammond-based U.S. attorney's office, but it shouldn't end a strong justice model maintained by the outgoing leader.

U.S. Attorney David Capp, a prosecutor in the office for 31 years and the office's leader for the past eight, announced his resignation last week.

He did so at the behest of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions in the expected changing of the justice guard under new President Donald Trump.

It's normal for a new administration to appoint its own people to the ranks of U.S. Attorney and other government offices.

In reality, Capp had planned on stepping down later this year anyhow.

We also appreciate Trump's pledge to beef up the ranks of law enforcement and believe our local U.S. Attorney's office should receive all possible resources to continue a noble fight spearheaded by leaders including Capp.

Capp leaves a stalwart, no-nonsense model of hunting down and vanquishing both Northwest Indiana political corruption and violent street gangs that should be followed by his successor.

In his three decades either prosecuting criminals or leading the Hammond-based U.S. attorney's office, Capp has been party to dozens of cases involving public corruption.

The office has secured more than 60 convictions of government leaders or their politically connected contractors, largely for crimes against taxpayers, since the 1980s.

In recent years, under Capp's direct leadership, those convictions have included East Chicago political powerbroker Robert Cantrell, former Lake County clerk and coroner Thomas Philpot, former Lake Station Mayor Keith Soderquist, former East Chicago Mayor George Pabey and former Lake County Surveyor George Van Til.

Still other officials, including Lake County Sheriff John Buncich, Portage Mayor James Snyder and former Calumet Township Trustee Mary Elgin face future felony trials in alleged and unrelated public corruption schemes.

These cases were all crafted under Capp's eye for justice.

Like leading federal prosecutors before him, Capp was very familiar with the pattern of corruption and self enrichment that has plagued our Region's political process for decades.

He also has presided over the prosecutions — nearly all of which have led to convictions — of dozens of street gang members in various sweeping indictments.

Convictions in that category have included the imprisonment of Region gang kingpins and rank-and-file members for murder, racketeering, drug-dealing and conspiracy charges, making our cities and towns safer.

Capp leaves behind a commendable legacy of aggressively targeting some of our Region's most glaring shortcomings.

We thank Capp for his years of dedicated and highly effective service.

Whoever the Trump administration selects to replace Capp would do well to follow the tenets of his success.





US attorney for northern Indiana resigns after Trump request
MARCH 12, 2017
FOX 59 - Indianapolis
http://fox59.com/2017/03/12/us-attorney-for-northern-indiana-resigns-after-trump-request/


HAMMOND, Ind. — The federal prosecutor for northern Indiana has resigned after President Donald Trump sought the dismissals of dozens of U.S. attorneys nationwide who were holdovers from the Obama administration.

The U.S. attorney’s office in Hammond says David Capp resigned after 31 years as a federal prosecutor. Capp says he had planned to retire in June.

President Barack Obama nominated Capp in 2009 as the U.S. attorney for the northern third of Indiana after Capp had been the office’s interim leader since 2007. The office pursuing several public corruption cases during Capp’s tenure.

Trump’s Friday request for resignations didn’t include Indianapolis U.S. Attorney Josh Minkler. He’s a career prosecutor appointed by the district’s federal judges after Obama appointee Joe Hogsett resigned in 2014 to start his successful campaign for Indianapolis mayor.










U.S. Attorney David Capp resigns
Post-Tribune
March 12, 2017


U.S. Attorney David Capp resigned Saturday from his position as northern Indiana's top prosecutor.

Capp, who has worked in the U.S. Attorney's office for more than 30 years, submitted his resignation per the request of President Donald Trump's administration, even though he planned to retire in June, according to a press release. Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Friday sought resignations for the U.S. attorneys appointed under former President Barack Obama, the Associated Press reported.

"It has been my greatest honor and privilege to serve all these years. The work we do in the United States Attorney's office has such an important positive impact on the citizens of northern Indiana," Capp said, in a statement.

President Barack Obama appointed Capp as U.S. attorney in 2009, though he had served as the office's interim chief since 2007 when former President George W. Bush tapped Van Bokkelen as a federal judge.

Capp, during his tenure with the federal prosecutor's office, took a hard stance again public corruption in the area. Serving under former U.S. Attorney Joseph Van Bokkelen, now a federal judge, Capp led major efforts to stop corruption, including Operation Lights Out and Operation Restore Public Integrity.

Under Capp, federal prosecutors recently leveled charges against Lake County Sheriff John Buncich and Portage Mayor James Snyder. Last year, his office successfully prosecuted former Lake Station Mayor Keith Soderquist and Soderquist's wife, Deborah.

As Capp, who joined the U.S. Attorney's office in 1885, announced charges against Buncich and Snyder in November, he issued a stern warning to other officials engaged in corrupt practices:

"You know who you are and we know, currently, who some of you are," Capp said. "And we are coming after you."

"And if any of you want to try to help yourself, time is running short," Capp said.

Aside from his crusade against public corruption, Capp also focused on fighting gang- and drug-related crime in Northwest Indiana.

"Some years ago I spoke one evening at a church in Gary.We had just made some arrests and closed down a drug operation in the neighborhood the church served," Capp said, in a statement. "Afterwards a gentleman came up to me, shook my hand, thanked me for our efforts and told me 'now my grandchildren can play in the yard again.'"

"That has always stuck with me and kept me focused on what our work is really about," Capp added."I hope that I have played a part in making more yards in the Northern District of Indiana safe for 'grandchildren to play in."

Capp is a 1968 graduate of Lew Wallace High School in Gary and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, according to his official biography. He received his law degree from Valparaiso University and was in private practice law for eight years, according to his official biography.










UPDATE: U.S. Attorney Capp resigns at Trump administration's request
NWI Times
March 11, 2017 



HAMMOND — U.S. Attorney David Capp — one of several holdover appointees from President Barack Obama’s time in office — has submitted his resignation after being asked to do so by Donald Trump’s administration, his Northwest Indiana District office confirmed Saturday.

The announcement of Capp’s resignation comes in light of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Friday abruptly requesting 46 chief federal prosecutors — all appointed previously by Obama — to resign, according to the Associated Press.

Many of the federal prosecutors who were nominated by Obama have already left their positions, but the nearly four dozen who stayed on in the first weeks of the Trump administration have been asked to leave "in order to ensure a uniform transition," Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores told the Associated Press on Friday.

Capp, who was appointed to head the Northwest District office in 2010 by then-President Obama, said he had advised his staff last summer that he planned to retire this year, according to a news release.

"I had been looking toward a June retirement, so this is just a few months earlier," he said in a news release.

Public corruption
Capp, who joined the office in 1985, has a long history of cracking down on violent criminals and rooting out crooked politicians ensnared in public corruption in Northwest Indiana.

Of late, Capp’s office had been overseeing the public corruption cases against Lake County Sheriff John Bunich and Tim Downs, the sheriff's second in command, and a Lake Station towing firm owner regarding allegations Buncich solicited bribes and campaign contributions.

The U.S. attorney also charged Portage Mayor James E. Snyder last year with soliciting and receiving $12,000 in bribes in exchange for a towing contract with the city of Portage.

Asked what will become of those investigations with Capp’s resignation, Ryan Holmes, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s office, said Saturday will be things will be “business as usual.”

"They were all indicted. (The cases) are all going to move forward,” Holmes told The Times.

'An incredible record'
Former FBI agent and retired East Chicago police chief, Mark Becker, said Saturday that Capp was the 1st Assistant U.S. Attorney when Becker arrived in Northwest Indiana in the late 1980s.

Prior to his appointment as U.S. attorney, Capp served as interim U.S. attorney on multiple occasions, Becker said.

“And that’s an incredible record. He survived Democrat and Republican regimes so it shows they had tremendous respect for his ability to lead the U.S. attorney’s office without allowing influences and outside politics to affect his decisions,” Becker said. 

Becker added it’s "a shame someone of his stature is being asked to leave earlier than perhaps he wanted to.”

“I’m not a politically driven person, but in view of what David Capp has accomplished, I have to shake my head at what this president was thinking. This was a decision with little thought,” Becker said. “This was a mistake.”

While it is customary for a new president to replace virtually all of the 93 U.S. attorneys, it often occurs at a slower pace, according to the Associated Press. Jeff Sessions, for example, lost his position as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Alabama in a similar sweep by then-Attorney General Janet Reno in 1993.

As supervisor years ago with the Gary Response Investigative Team, an FBI-led task force aimed at dismantling gangs and gang-related activities, Becker said he could count on Capp to support the team's efforts. 

"Dave, he was the No. 2 man in the office at that time. He could have delegated, but he felt so passionate about our work and our attempts to help reduce Gary's violent crime, he took it personally and became our lead contact for prosecution in the U.S. Attorney's office," Becker said. "We could call him at 2, 3 in the morning, and he would get in his pickup truck and help us write warrants. That speaks volumes about the type of person he was."

Getting gangs off the streets 
Those who worked closely with Capp through his 31-year career on Saturday noted a number of capstones — and credited his office for bringing the Region’s street gang members and robbery suspects to justice.

Last year, Capp announced his office had taken 56 members of the Latin Kings and Imperials Gangsters off the streets in the past four years alone.

"And those 56 were responsible — and this is just the ones we can prove — for 36 murders,” Capp said last year during a community forum of the wave of federal indictments on gang members.

Lake County Prosecutor Bernard Carter said Saturday that Capp “almost singlehandedly dismantled the Latin Kings.”

“They are nowhere near the threat that they were before those investigations,” Carter said.

In 2015, Capp's office teamed up with local authorities to investigate gang-related homicides. A number of recent federal indictments have targeted members of the Latin Kings operating in Hammond, East Chicago and Gary’s Black Oak section.

Carter said Capp's resignation is an "extreme loss" to Northwest Indiana's citizens. 

"He was compassionate but yet very dedicated to the responsibilities of the job," Carter said. 

Capp in a news release Saturday recalled speaking at a Gary church some years ago.

"We had just made some arrests and closed down a drug operation in the neighborhood the church served. Afterwards a gentleman came up to me, shook my hand, thanked me for our efforts and told me 'now my grandchildren can play in the yard again,'" he said. "That has always stuck with me and kept me focused on what our work is really about. I hope that I have played a part in making more yards in the Northern District of Indiana safe for 'grandchildren to play in.'"










Statement Regarding US Attorney David Capp
Department Of Justice
United States Attorney's Office
Northern District of Indiana
March 11, 2017


HAMMOND- The United States Attorney’s Office announced that David Capp has submitted his resignation as United States Attorney as requested by the President.
Capp stated: 
After 31 years at the United States Attorney’s office I have submitted my resignation as United States Attorney. I had advised my office last summer that it was my plan to retire in 2017. I had been looking toward a June retirement, so this is just a few months earlier.
It has been my greatest honor and privilege to serve all these years. The work we do in the United States Attorney’s Office has such an important positive impact on the citizens of northern Indiana. I want to thank the men and women of the USAO for their dedication and professionalism, day-in and day-out. They are the people that do the hard work!
Some years ago I spoke one evening at a church in Gary. We had just made some arrests and closed down a drug operation in the neighborhood the church served. Afterwards a gentleman came up to me, shook my hand, thanked me for our efforts and told me “now my grandchildren can play in the yard again.” That has always stuck with me and kept me focused on what our work is really about. I hope that I have played a part in making more yards in the Northern District of Indiana safe for “grandchildren to play in.”










Justice Department calls for 46 Obama U.S. attorneys to resign
Wallace McKelvey 
PennLive.Com
March 10, 2017 
Capp--5

The Trump administration called for the 46 remaining U.S. attorneys appointed by Barack Obama to resign on Friday.

The move does not affect any of Pennsylvania's three federal prosecutors.

Bruce Brandler, of the Middle District that includes Harrisburg, was appointed by Obama-era Attorney General Loretta Lynch but was never appointed by the president. The others, Louis Lappen and Soo Song, filled the eastern and western district posts in an acting capacity following the departure of their predecessors.

On Friday, Brandler told PennLive that he couldn't comment specifically on the call for other U.S. attorneys to resign but that it did happen during the Clinton administration. Eventually, he said, all of them left office.

"I'm not sure in past administrations how quickly or not it's occurred," he said. "My experience is that it's not that unusual."

Brandler, a career prosecutor, said he will hold office until the president appoints someone to replace him.

"How long that takes is anyone's guess," he said.

L. George Parry, a Philadelphia attorney who worked in the Justice Department during the Watergate scandal of the 1970s, agreed with Brandler's assessment: "Resignations of US Attorneys when a new administration takes over are standard practice and unremarkable."

Justice Department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores told The New York Times that many of the U.S. attorneys nominated under the Obama administration have already left their posts.

"Attorney General [Jeff Sessions] has now asked the remaining 46 presidentially appointed U.S. Attorneys to tender their resignations in order to ensure a uniform transition," Flores said, in a written statement.

Career prosecutors will take over running those offices until new U.S. attorneys are nominated and confirmed, she said.

The call for resignations would apply to Preet Bharara, the U.S. attorney for New York's southern district who was asked by several ethics watchdogs to investigate whether Donald Trump had received payments or other favors from foreign governments in violation of the U.S. Constitution's emoluments clause.

According to the Justice Department website, the following 46 U.S. attorneys were presidentially appointed:
Alabama, Middle           George L. Beck*
Alabama, Southern           Kenyen Ray Brown*
Alaska           Karen L. Loeffler*
Arkansas, Eastern           Christopher R. Thyer*
California, Central           Eileen M. Decker*
Connecticut           Deirdre Daly*
Delaware                   Charles M. Oberly, III*
Florida, Middle                   Lee Bentley*
Georgia, Southern           Edward J. Tarver*
Guam                                Alicia A.G. Limtiaco*
Northern Mariana Islands     Alicia A.G. Limtiaco*
Hawaii                           Florence T. Nakakuni*
Illinois, Northern           Zachary T. Fardon*
Indiana, Northern           David A. Capp*
Iowa, Northern   Kevin W. Techau*
Louisiana, Eastern           Kenneth A. Polite*
Louisiana, Middle           Walt Green*
Louisiana, Western           Stephanie A. Finley*
Maine           Thomas Edward Delahanty, II*
Maryland           Rod J. Rosenstein*
Michigan, Eastern           Barbara L. McQuade*
Minnesota           Andrew M. Luger*
Mississippi, Northern   Felicia Adams*
Mississippi, Southern   Gregory K. Davis*
Missouri, Eastern           Richard G. Callahan*
Missouri, Western           Tammy Dickinson*
Montana                   Michael Cotter*
Nebraska                   Deborah K.R. Gilg*
Nevada                   Daniel G. Bogden*
New Hampshire           Emily Gray Rice*
New Jersey           Paul J. Fishman*
New Mexico           Damon P. Martinez*
New York, Eastern           Robert L. Capers*
New York, Northern   Richard S. Hartunian*
New York, Southern   Preet Bharara*
Ohio, Northern   Carole S. Rendon*
Oklahoma, Eastern Mark  F. Green*
Oklahoma, Northern   Danny Williams*
Rhode Island           Peter F. Neronha*
Tennessee, Middle           David Rivera*
Texas, Southern           Kenneth Magidson*
Utah           John W. Huber*
Virgin Islands           Ronald W. Sharpe*
Virginia, Eastern           Dana Boente*
Washington, Eastern   Michael Ormsby*
Wisconsin, Western   John William Vaudreuil*
Wyoming           Christopher A. Crofts*










U.S. Attorneys Listing
United States Department Of Justice
Offices Of The United States Attorneys
March 06, 2017
https://www.justice.gov/usao/us-attorneys-listing

Below is a listing of current United States Attorneys for all 94 districts. Presidentially appointed United States Attorneys are noted with an asterisk (*) after their name and should be addressed as “The Honorable.”  All others should be addressed as “Mr.” or “Ms.”  Acting United States Attorneys are designated by a caret sign (^).