PoliceOne Daily News
Chicago officers acquitted of Laquan McDonald cover-up
Thu, 17 Jan 2019 20:30:11 GMT
Md. bank robbery suspect claiming he had bomb fatally shot by police
Thu, 17 Jan 2019 20:25:59 GMT

Associated Press

SILVER SPRING, Md. — Authorities say a man who tried to rob a Maryland bank before a police officer shot and killed him also is suspected of robbing a different bank last month.

The Montgomery County Police Department on Thursday identified 31-year-old Mikyas Mehary Tegegne as the suspect in Wednesday's attempted robbery of a BB&T bank in Silver Spring. Police say Officer Christopher LaPointe shot him.

Police say Tegegne told a bank manager he had a bomb in his backpack and showed a handgun before fleeing without any cash. The officer confronted him in a nearby parking garage and shot him, according to authorities.

The department says investigators believe Tegegne also robbed a Sandy Spring Bank branch in Silver Spring on Dec. 24.

LaPointe has been placed on administrative leave.

La. rookie officer’s boyfriend shot, killed her, officials say
Thu, 17 Jan 2019 17:38:51 GMT
FBI stops Atlanta man's attempt to attack White House
Thu, 17 Jan 2019 17:32:56 GMT

Associated Press

ATLANTA — A Georgia man who traded his car for an antitank rocket, guns and explosives in a plot to storm the White House is under arrest, authorities said.

Hasher Jallal Taheb, 21, of Cumming, was arrested in an FBI sting operation Wednesday and is charged with attempting to damage or destroy a building owned by the United States using fire or an explosive, U.S. Attorney Byung J. "BJay" Pak said.

It wasn't immediately clear whether Taheb had an attorney who could comment on the allegations.

The FBI set up the sting after a local law enforcement agency said in March that it got a tip from someone who said Taheb had become radicalized, changed his name and planned to travel abroad, according to an FBI agent's affidavit filed in court. A confidenctial FBI source and an undercover agent both made contact with Taheb after he advertised his vehicle for sale in August.

Special Agent Chris Hacker, who oversees the FBI office in Atlanta, said they believe Taheb was acting on his own.

The affidavit says Taheb told the FBI source in October that he planned to travel abroad for "hijra," which the agent wrote refers to traveling to territory controlled by the Islamic State. Because he didn't have a passport, he couldn't travel abroad and told the FBI source that he wanted to carry out an attack in the U.S. against the White House and the Statue of Liberty.

He later mentioned other sites he'd also like to target, including the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial and a specific synagogue, the affidavit says.

He met with the undercover agent and the FBI source multiple times last month and was also in frequent contact using an encrypted messaging application, the affidavit says.

During one meeting with the agent and the source, Taheb "advised that if they were to go to another country, they would be one of many, but if they stayed in the United States, they could do more damage," the affidavit says. Taheb "explained that jihad was an obligation, that he wanted to do as much damage as possible, and that he expected to be a 'martyr,' meaning he expected to die during the attack."

At another meeting, he showed the undercover agent a hand-drawn diagram of the ground floor of the West Wing of the White House and detailed a plan for attack, the affidavit says. He asked the undercover agent to obtain the weapons and explosives needed to carry out the attack, and they discussed selling or exchanging their cars to pay for them.

Taheb told the undercover agent they needed a "base" where they could regroup and where he could record a video to motivate people: "He stated he would be the narrator, clips of oppressed Muslims would be shown, and American and Israeli flags would be burned in the background."

Last week, Taheb told the undercover agent he wanted to pick up weapons this week and drive directly to Washington to carry out the attack, investigators said.

Taheb said they would approach the White House from the back road, causing a distraction for police and then would proceed into the White House, using an antitank weapon to blow open a door and then take down as many people and do as much damage as possible, the affidavit says.

Despite his detailed attack plans, Taheb told an undercover FBI agent he had never shot a gun but could learn easily and also said he had watched some videos of how grenades explode, the affidavit says.

Taheb met with the FBI source and undercover agent on Wednesday in a parking lot in Buford to exchange their cars for semi-automatic assault rifles, three explosive devices with remote detonators and an anti-tank rocket, the affidavit says.

A second FBI source met them and inspected the vehicles, and a second FBI undercover agent arrived in a tractor trailer with weapons and explosives that had been rendered inert by the FBI. The undercover agent and Taheb talked about the guns, how to arm and detonate the explosives and how to use the antitank rocket, the affidavit says.

Taheb and the undercover agent and FBI source whom he believed to be part of his group turned over their car keys to the second confidential source and then loaded the inert explosives and guns into a rental vehicle, the affidavit says. Then, after they got into the car and closed the doors, agents arrested Taheb.

Retired NY officer, wife found dead in apparent murder-suicide
Thu, 17 Jan 2019 14:58:30 GMT

Heather Yakin The Times Herald-Record, Middletown, N.Y.

MIDDLETOWN, NY — For the second time in a week and a half, Middletown police are investigating an apparent domestic murder-suicide.

Middletown police say that Amanda Pumillo's husband, Francis J. Pumillo, 55, shot her and then himself in the garage of their home at 70 Vincent Drive.

Police said they were called at 8:06 p.m. Tuesday through 911 after a neighbor found the couple's bodies.

Police said the neighbor went to check on Amanda Pumillo after learning she hadn't reported to work for her scheduled nursing shift at a local hospital.

Orange Regional Medical Center in the Town of Wallkill confirmed that Amanda Pumillo worked there.

Police said the Pumillos were alone at the home when the shooting happened. They said Francis Pumillo is a retired police officer, and used a legally possessed weapon.

Francis Pumillo's LinkedIn page and SeeThroughNY list him as a lieutenant with the Greenburgh Town Police Department in Westchester County, starting his career with the department in 1996.

Neighbors to the home said they heard and saw nothing unusual before police arrived Tuesday evening and cordoned off the tidy, pale yellow split-level ranch house. They saw no signs before Tuesday of what was to come.

The couple seemed like good people who waved hello and goodbye and chatted occasionally, but mostly kept to themselves, said neighbors Robert and Nancy Hernandez.

"I used to see him in the back yard all the time," Robert Hernandez said. "He was a nice guy."

He said he last saw the husband a few days ago, putting up dowel rods at the edge of his lawn so city snow plows wouldn't damage the sod.

Nancy Hernandez said when she did yard work in warmer months, she'd often see Amanda Pumillo sitting on the back deck. She hadn't seen the wife in a few days, but said that wasn't unusual because the woman worked varied nursing shifts.

Middletown police said this case and the Jan. 6 murder-suicide, in which Jasminn Emanuel's husband, corrections officer Dennis Hercules, fatally shot her and them himself in their Monhagen Avenue home, exemplify "two alarming trends" that society must address and work toward solutions for: domestic violence, where victims were killed and their families left to struggle with the aftermath; and law enforcement suicide.

Police said the department is aggressive in its investigation and enforcement in domestic violence cases, and works closely with survivors to make sure abusers are held accountable.

Middletown police have started a partnership with Safe Homes of Orange County on an outreach program that identifies people in relationships at high risk for lethal violence in order to get them services and support.

The program is successful, Middletown Lt. Jeffry Thoelen wrote in a news release, "but sometimes our agency and Safe Homes do not find out about a victim until it's just too late."

In 2017, police said, three times more law enforcement officers died from suicide than from line-of-duty shooting deaths. Police said anyone dealing with thoughts of suicidal thoughts or depression should seek help rather than acting out.

"Your pain and your suffering is real, but by choosing suicide, you only transfer that pain and suffering to your friends and loved ones," Thoelen wrote.

Police said the investigation is continuing and police will release more information if it becomes available.


©2019 The Times Herald-Record, Middletown, N.Y.

Tenn. man accused of fleeing, shooting arrow at LEOs
Thu, 17 Jan 2019 14:34:52 GMT

Associated Press

WINCHESTER, Tenn. — A Tennessee man is accused of ignoring deputies at a crash scene and leading them on a short-lived car chase after which he shot an arrow at them with a compound bow.

The Franklin County Sheriff's Office says 39-year-old James Michael Ferguson approached the crash scene Sunday night and told deputies his car was in the wreck but then fled. Spokesman Sgt. Chris Guess tells the Chattanooga Times Free Press deputies knew who Ferguson was and decided to nix the chase and go to his home.

Guess says deputies found Ferguson's car blocking his driveway and noticed Ferguson hiding in weeds growing nearby with a compound bow in hand. Ferguson shot an arrow, striking a cruiser and fled on foot. He was caught and arrested on charges including domestic assault.

Photo of fallen Calif. rookie LEO sparks controversy on social media
Wed, 16 Jan 2019 23:14:42 GMT
5 Texas officers fired following man's death in custody, police say
Wed, 16 Jan 2019 22:58:55 GMT

Kaley Johnson Fort Worth Star-Telegram

FORT WORTH, Texas — Five Fort Worth police officers were fired Tuesday for their roles in the death of a man who died in custody.

In a statement, police identified the terminated officers as T. Stephens, D. Pritzker, C. Golden, H. Fellhauer and M. Miller. A sixth officer, S. Smith, was suspended without pay for 90 days and a seventh, A. Scharf, was suspended for five days.

All were patrol officers, according to police.

On July 26, the officers responded to a report of a prowler in the 3300 block of Griggs Avenue and took an armed man, who they said was attempting to break into a house, into custody.

The man was later identified as Christopher Lowe, 55, although police did not identify Lowe in their statement.

The department said the arrested man began to complain about medical issues on the way to the station, but officers did not call for medical aid.

The officers left him handcuffed in the back of the patrol car as they interviewed witnesses. They returned to find him unresponsive, they said.

Police called an ambulance and the man was taken to John Peter Smith Hospital where he was pronounced dead, police said.

The Tarrant County medical examiner's office listed his time of death at 10:47 p.m. July 26. It said he died from cocaine intoxication and his death was ruled an accident.

The Fort Worth Police Department Major Case Unit and Internal Affairs Unit began investigating the man's death, according to police.

The investigation determined the officers committed multiple violations of departmental policy, including failure to protect the rights of persons in police custody, according to police.

"The actions taken by the officers involved in this incident discovered during our investigation are not in accordance with the values of the Fort Worth Police Department or the standards that the citizens of Fort Worth have for their police department," police said in a statement. "We hope that the administrative conclusion of this case is an assurance to the residents of Fort Worth that we are able to identify and properly address any issues that may arise during police incidents."

Police said Chief Joel Fitzgerald and other supervisors have been in regular contact with the man's family, who requested privacy.

Manny Ramirez, president of the Fort Worth Police Officer's Association, said his organization is still trying to gather facts surrounding the dismissals. Ramirez said he cannot remember a time when five officers have been fired in connection with the same incident. This is unprecedented, he said.

"We were surprised by the chain-of-command decision handed down today," Ramirez said. "This was unexpected."

The POA will continue to advocate for the due process rights for all the officers involved on the front end and on the back end, Ramirez said. The organization is there to make sure no one is treated differently than anyone else.

"We are affected just as deeply as the citizens when there is a loss of life," he said. "That's an officer's worst day."

Michael Bell, activist and pastor of Greater St. Stephen First Church, said people in Fort Worth's African-American community will be surprised by the disciplinary measures. Bell, who has been asking that police release video footage of the incident, said the family has been reluctant to come out publicly because of fear of retaliation from police.

This is the right ruling, Bell said. Police officers had an obligation to get Lowe medical attention, he said.

"Maybe this is an indication that Fort Worth is going to start addressing the lingering issues of race and bigotry," Bell said. "Because really the Fort Worth Way would not have allowed this. The Fort Worth Way would have been to criminalize the victim."


©2019 Fort Worth Star-Telegram

How to develop a tactical yoga routine
Wed, 16 Jan 2019 20:18:33 GMT

By Jane Henson, P1 Contributor

Tactical Movement for First Responders (TMFR), or tactical yoga, is a movement system specifically designed to help police officers avoid injury on the job and release stress for improved job performance.

TMFR stretches muscles and targets the deep connective tissues between the muscles and the fascia throughout your body. This allows for a release of tight muscles and ligaments that often come from prolonged sitting in patrol cars. Patrol officers are especially prone to tightened hip and lower back muscles and can become injured when moving quickly from sitting positions in the car to a foot pursuit within seconds.

A regular TMFR practice geared toward release of tension in the neck, lower back, hips, knees and ankles will help keep you from injury, improve your performance and maintain flexibility.

Why at-home yoga works for cops

Shift work can be problematic for law enforcement officers seeking to participate in exercise programs. Establishing an independent home practice is not only beneficial but also allows you to practice on your own time in a safe environment. It is in this private practice that you can move at your own pace and, in your own time frame, explore movement poses that transform your health and well-being.

The biggest obstacle is knowing which stretches to utilize and what order to practice them in. While mastering the art of sequencing stretches may take some time, with a few basic building blocks you can put together proper sequences and approach a regular home practice with confidence.

Tactical yoga tactics

In every movement practice you should focus on the following TMFR tactics: target, timing, approach and progression.

Target: When practicing tactical movement, choose an area of body to target. For example, lower back and hip pain are common in police officers. Target areas can change in each practice. If you are feeling tight in the shoulder area, target that area. TMFR is a practice specific to your individual needs.

Timing: TMFR is about creating a practice that will be beneficial to the individual officer, which includes the timing. Movement practices should run about an hour, although a short 10-15 minute practice right before and after a shift can be just as beneficial. The amount of time spent in each stretch is determined by your body. Holding a stretch should never hurt. Beginners can hold a stretch for 30 seconds to 1 minute, then progress to hold as long as 5 minutes depending on the comfort level of their bodies.

Approach: Once you have determined the timing for your practice, you will want to enter into each stretch with a three-point approach:

    Reach your edge. TMFR often has an acupressure-like effect on the connective tissue. When stretching, come to your edge, but do not go beyond it. There should be no pain. Be still. The act of being still requires you to focus both your mind and body. Deliberate movement to reach your edge or move away from pain is necessary. Any other movement besides deep breathing is not stillness. Be mindful. Do not move quickly from stretch to stretch. Take the time for your body to accept the changes it has made in each pose before moving into the next. Pause in a neutral space before moving into the next stretch.

Progression: The progression of each stretch should make sense. It is not beneficial to move from a seated position to a standing position and back to a seated position. When thinking on the progression of your practice, think tactically. You want your movement carefully planned to reach your goal of flexibility for better job performance and less injury. A progression that begins standing and progresses to a seated position is tactically sound.

Tactical yoga in action

Utilizing the TMFR approach, the following example shows how to put together a lower back 15-minute practice you can do before heading in for your shift:

1. Breathe/meditate: 5 minutes. In a comfortable seated position, breathe in and out slowly. Relax yourself by taking 3 to 5 breaths as follows. Visualize each number as you count. Breathe in counting 1, 2, 3, 4, and then stop. Hold your breath, counting 1, 2, 3, and 4. Exhale counting 1, 2, 3, and 4. Upon completion of this breathing sequence, breathe normally and continue to focus on your breath.

2. Butterfly: 1 minute. From a seated position, bring the soles of your feet together and then slide them away from you. Allowing your back to round, fold forward, lightly resting your hands on your feet or on the floor in front of you. Your head should hang down toward your heels. The goal is to stretch the spine, not the hips, so do not focus on trying to get your knees to the floor.

3. Windshield wipers: 1 minute. This is a counterpose to the butterfly pose. To come out of the pose, lift the torso and place the hands on the floor behind you with the fingers facing forward. Then lean back onto your hands, and straighten the legs one at a time. Bend your knees and place the soles of your feet on the floor mat width apart. Drop both knees to the right, then back through the midline and over to the left. Continue back and forth.

4. Caterpillar: 1 minute. Sit on a cushion with both legs straight out in front of you. Fold forward over the legs, allowing your back to round.

5. Hammock: 1 minute. This is a counterpose to the caterpillar. Come out of the pose, slowly lift your head and lengthen your spine. Bend the knees, and place the soles of the feet on the floor. Place the hands behind you on the floor. Press into the hands to lift and lower the hips in a way that feels good after the decompression of the pose.

6. Sphinx: 1 minute. Lie down on your belly. Place your palms flat on the floor in front of you like a sphinx and press upward. Notice how this feels in your lower back. If the sensations are too strong, lower your body until you have reached your edge with no pain.

7. Child’s pose: 1 minute. Begin by sitting on your heels and then slowly fold forward, bringing your chest to your thighs and your forehead to the ground. Arms can be placed by your side or stretched out in front of you.

8. Resting pose: 4 minutes. Lie on your back. Arms to your side. Legs and arms relaxed. Breathe in and out deeply three times and then breathe normally. When coming out of the pose, roll onto your right side and slowly come to a seated position. Sit for a moment before moving to a standing position.

One final consideration before engaging your movement practice is safety. If you currently have an injury, check for contraindications of specific stretches or postures. Never push your body to pain as this can cause injury you are seeking avoid in the first place.

About the Author Jane Henson is a therapeutic yoga instructor and a Christian Yoga Association Master Trainer R-CYAMT. Trained in yoga therapy, trauma focus and yin specialties, Jane utilized her expertise to create TMFR. Law enforcement officers can learn more at www.tacticalmovement.org.

How to stay safe before, during and after a pursuit
Wed, 16 Jan 2019 20:03:38 GMT
Lt. Dan Marcou