Spokane Police Abuses: Past to Present

The People of Spokane vs. Law Enforcement Abuse, Impunity, Corruption, and Cover-up

Archive for July, 2007

Urgent Call: Police Advisory Committee Meeting — 7 AM Wed, August 8, 2007, Monroe Court Bldg, 901 N. Monroe St., Rm 300

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 31, 2007

Police Advisory Committee (PAC) Meeting

Wednesday, August 8, 2007
7 a.m. – 8 a.m.
Monroe Court Bldg., Rm. 300, N. 901 N. Monroe St., Spokane

The Police Advisory Committee (PAC) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Spokane Police Department. As you will see in the information below from the February 2007 SPD Newsletter (see page 6) , the Spokane Police Department likes to portray the Committee as representing the public. However, the committee is run by the police and for the police. While the Spokane Police Newsletter leaves out the fact that the Committee is officially staffed by six senior police staff persons and presents it as a representative of the Spokane people, the history of the PAC, its secrecy, it’s dominance by self-appointed representatives of certain community segments, and its lack of representation of the needs of those communities during many years of turmoil and abuse by the SPD suggest that it has put itself at the service of the SPD.

The PAC has met largely unseen and unknown monthly for nearly 25 years. During that period the SPD has suffered many embarrassments, created many scandals, killed many citizens, and been involved in much corruption. Yet, the Committee, with what are termed “representatives” of various Spokane communities, as had virtually nothing to say publicly. When its members have had things to say–such as when long-time PAC president Rick Mendoza stated at the January 30, 2007 ACLU-sponsored forum at Gonzaga University Law School that the SPD is the “best police department” in the United States–they have often failed to reflected an real understanding of community concerns with regard to the Spokane Police Department.

During the last 10 years of hidden PAC meetings with the SPD, another Spokane organization–the Citizens Review Commission “led” by Rev. Lonnie Mitchell — reportedly never met. The seven member Citizen Review Commission shares three members with the Spokane Police Department’s PAC and has two members who represent police associations (the Spokane Police Guild and the Police Lieutenants and Captains Association). The staff of the CRC is a Spokane City attorney and, of course, a Spokane Police officer. Members serve for three 4 year terms. Though the City of Spokane website provides a detailed description of the mission and purpose of the Police Advisory Committee, the same website provides no explanation what-so-ever of the mission and purpose of the Citizen Review Commission. It is understood that the Commission was formed to address complaints from the community regarding police misconduct. For that reason, it is extremely disturbing that during ten years of repeated controversy and police abuse, the Commission never met.


From the City of Spokane website: (You will notice this differs from the presentation of the membership of the committee from the information presented in the Chief’s newletter where no reference is made to the PAC’s six police “staff” members):

Police Advisory Committee (PAC) Meeting

Wednesday, August 8, 2007
7 a.m. – 8 a.m.
Monroe Court Bldg., Rm. 300, N. 901 N. Monroe St., Spokane

Police Advisory Committee
Contact: Lt. Rex Olson
1100 W. Mallon Ave
Spokane, WA 99260
(509) 835-4523

Mission Statement or Purpose: To act as an Advisory Board representing various community client groups to the office of the Chief of Police. To function as a sounding board for the Chief of Police regarding community needs and concerns, as well as community response to proposed police programs and procedures. The only term limits are for the Chair and Vice Chair who can each serve only two consecutive annual terms.

Members Title
Rev C.W. Andrews Member at Large
Joan Butler (Chair) Member at Large
Bob Byrne Member at Large
Bob Dellwo Member at Large
Carmella LeBlanc Hispanic Community
Marilou Buan Filipino American Association
Rick Mendoza Spokane Hispanic Business/Professional Assn.
Rev. Lonnie Mitchell SR. Alternate for Bishop Mize/Ministers’ Fellowship Union
Bishop Walton F. Mize SR. President, Ministers’ Fellowship Union
Roger Moses (Vice Chair) Native Americans
V. Anne Smith National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)
Olmer “Butch” Smith Member at Large
Christy Hamilton Spokane COPS/Block Watch
Rev. Eugene Singleton Ministers’ Fellowship Union
Vang Xiong X. Toyed Spokane Hmong Association
Marie Yates Lincoln Heights/COPS Southeast
Ladd Smith Gay and Lesbian Community
Jan Dobbs Spokane Mental Health
Gheorghe Turcin Eastern European & other continents’ Ethnic Communities/ DOC high-risk release coordination
Russell Smith Lilac Blind Foundation
Staff Title
Anne Kirkpatrick Chief of Police
Jim Nicks Assistant Chief
Bruce Roberts Major
LT. Rex Olson Contact Person
Gill Moberly Major
Gayle Tucker Secretary


Following is the information on the PAC from Chief Ann Kirkpatrick’s SPD newsletter (February 2007):

Joan Butler is the new Chair of the committee. She replaces Rick Mendoza whose term expired. The new Vice Chair is Roger Moses.

The Police Advisory Committee was formed about 25-years ago by the Chief of Police to serve as a sounding board on various issues and concerns of the Department and the community. These can be specific incidents or broader matters of Spokane Police policy and procedure.

Committee members represent the interests of more than 20 groups as well as those of the greater Spokane community. The Police Advisory Committee is an important resource for the Chief’s office. Members provide input and feedback on SPD projects and advise the Chief on theneeds of the community as they relate to police programs. The committee assists SPD in educating citizens about Department policies and the role of community based policing. The committee meets quarterly at various community centers.

Please join us on August 8, 2007. Future meeting dates will be published in the SPD Newsletter.

Current members of the Police Advisory Committee are:

Joan Butler, Chair, at large member
Roger Moses, Vice-Chair, Native American Community
Rev. C.W. Andrews, at large member
Marilou Buan, Filipino American Association
Bob Byrne, at large member
Bob Dellwo, at large member
Jan Dobbs, Community Mental Health
Carmella LeBlanc, Hispanic Community
Rick Mendoza, Spokane Hispanic Business/Professional Association
Bishop Walton F. Mize, Sr., Ministers Fellowship Union
Rev. Lonnie Mitchell, alternate for Bishop Mize
Rev. Eugene Singleton, Ministers Fellowship Union
V. Anne Smith, NAACP
Omer L. “Butch” Smith, at large member
Gheorghe Turcin, DOC and East European & other continents’ ethnic communities
Vang Xiong X Toyed, Hmong Community
Marie Yates, COPS SE
Ladd Smith, Gay & Lesbian Community



During ten years of police abuse and scandal in Spokane, the Citizen Review Commission headed by Rev. Lonnie Mitchell never met.

From the City of Spokane website:

Citizen Review Commission
Members of the Citizens’ Review Commission must have been a resident of the City of Spokane for at least four years by the time the appointment becomes affective. A police background check is completed on all applicants and his or her immediate family. The background check must show no significant recent criminal history. The applicant must agree to the necessary time commitment and must agree to represent the general public. All appointees must undergo a training program of up to sixteen hours in police and commission procedures and must do one ride-along with police.

Commissioners shall serve for 4 (three) year terms.

The Citizens’ Review Commission meets as needed.

Members Title Term Expires
Rev. Lonnie Mitchell, Sr.-Chair Citizen-at-Large 03/31/2008
Vern Burch Citizen-at-Large 03/31/2007
William Ogle Citizen-at-Large 06/08/2007
Douglas Puckett Citizen-at-Large 12/31/2010
Judge Richard Richard, Sr. Retired judge 03/31/2008
Robert Byrne Qualified Member of the Police Guild 12/31/2010
Marie Yates Qualified Member of the Police Lieutenants & Captains Association 03/31/2008
Mike Piccolo Legal Council
Dave Richards IA Lieutenant

Vacancies: 0

(Though this information is the most current on the City of Spokane website as of July 31, 2007, it would appear that there are in fact two openings on the Committee as the terms of Vern Burch and William Ogle have now expired).

Posted in Educating the Chief, Lies Damn Lies and ..., Spokane LE Personalities, Unanswered Questions, Urgent Call, Yes ma'am Chief | Leave a Comment »

Know Your Rights: While you still have them

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 30, 2007

For those young Spokanites (and the rest of us too) who have asked what their rights are when Spokane area law enforcement stops them, here is some guidance. Remember, this guidance is not a substitute for an attorney but remember also, an attorney is not synonymous with justice nor with protection from illegal police action.


This is one example of information available at the Flex Your Rights website.

Street Stop Scenario

Scene from BUSTED

In any given public police encounter, with a few notable exceptions, the below rules will help protect your civil rights and improve your chances of leaving safely—so you don’t have to be a legal expert to say and do the right thing.

1) Keep Your Private Items Out of View
This is common sense: Always keep any private items that you don’t want others to see out of sight. Legally speaking, police do not need a search warrant in order to confiscate any illegal items that are in plain view.

2) Be Courteous & Non-Confrontational
If you are stopped by a police officer, remain calm. Don’t ever — under any circumstances — talk back or raise your voice to a police officer. You have nothing to gain — and everything to lose — by escalating the hostility level of the encounter.

Even if the officers are being belligerent it’s always in your best interest to remain calm, courteous and non-confrontational.

3) Determine the Reason You Have Been Stopped
Police may initiate a conversation with any citizen for any reason, however they may not detain you without “reasonable suspicion” that you are engaged in criminal activity. Ask the officer: “Why am I being stopped?” If the officer does not indicate that you are suspected of a specific crime, then this is a casual stop and you should be allowed to terminate the encounter at any time.

If the officer indicates that you are suspected of criminal activity, you are being detained. At this stage, the officer is attempting to find evidence on which to establish probable cause necessary to arrest you. Steps #4, #5, and #6 become extremely important at this point.

4) Just Say “No” to Warrantless Searches
Warning: If a police officer asks your permission to search, you are under no obligation to consent. The only reason he’s asking you is because he doesn’t have enough evidence to search without your consent. If you consent to a search request you give up one of the most important constitutional rights you have—your Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.

A majority of avoidable police searches occur because citizens naively waive their Fourth Amendment rights by consenting to warrantless searches. As a general rule, if a person consents to a warrantless search, the search automatically becomes reasonable and therefore legal. Consequently, whatever an officer finds during such a search can be used to convict the person.

Don’t expect a police officer to tell you about your right not to consent. Police officers are not required by law to inform you of your rights before asking you to consent to a search. In addition, police officers are trained to use their authority to get people to consent to a search, and most people are predisposed to comply with any request a police officer makes. For example, the average motorist stopped by a police officer who asks them, “Would you mind if I search your vehicle, please?” will probably consent to the officer’s search without realizing that they have every right to deny the officer’s request.

If, for any reason you don’t want the officer digging through your belongings, you should refuse to consent by saying something like, “Officer, I know you want to do your job, but I do not consent to any searches of my private property.” If the officer still proceeds to search you and finds illegal contraband, your attorney can argue that the contraband was discovered through an illegal search and hence should be thrown out of court.

You should never hesitate to assert your constitutional rights. Just say “no!”

5) Determine if You Can Leave
You have the right to terminate an encounter with a police officer unless you are being detained under police custody or have been arrested. The general rule is that you don’t have to answer any questions that the police ask you. This rule comes from the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which protects you against self-incrimination. If you cannot tell if you are allowed to leave, say to the officer, “I have to be on my way. Am I free to go?”

If the officer says “Yes,” tell him to have a nice day, and leave immediately. If the officer’s answer is ambiguous, or if he asks you another unrelated question, persist by asking “am I being detained, or can I go now?” If the officer says “No,” you are being detained, and you may be placed under arrest. If this is the case, reassert your rights as outlined above, and follow Rules #6 and #7.

6) Do Not Answer Questions without Your Attorney Present
There is no reason to worry that your failure to answer the officer’s questions will later be used against you. The truth is just the opposite: Anything you say can, and probably will, be used against you.

In just about any case imaginable, a person is best off not answering any questions about his involvement in anything illegal. Assert your Fifth and Sixth Amendment rights by saying these exact words: “Officer, I have nothing to say until I speak with a lawyer.”

*Remember- If you do choose to answer any of the officer’s questions, always be honest. Police are not easily tricked and will often become hostile if they feel disrespected. If you feel it is best not to answer truthfully, then don’t say anything at all.

7) Do Not Physically Resist
If the police proceed to detain, search, or arrest you despite your wishes—do not physically resist. You may state clearly but non-confrontationally: “Officer, I am not resisting arrest and I do not consent to any searches.” Or you may assert your rights by simply saying nothing until you can speak with an attorney.

(The above information is from http://www.flexyourrights.org/ I invite you to visit their website.)

Posted in Know Your Rights | Leave a Comment »

Riddle me this, Batman!

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 30, 2007

What is the newest toy in the little police officer’s bag of public safety tricks?

The ultra-high tech, “can’t be without it”, “I gotta have one Sarge”, “wait till you see this thing Captain”, “I have to admit Chief I love to hear the women scream” Taser.

The Spokane Police Department’s Suicide Prevention Weapon — (click on virtual tour)

The Infamous UCLA Incident

Palm Beach Police Taser “Defiant” Citizen

Tasers: Are Officers Too Quick to Fire? (report)

Death by Taser: The Killer Alternative to Guns

Amnesty International Report: USA–Excessive and Lethal

Taser, Inc. Sales Video (Warning to Spokane Police Department — Do not try this in real life.)

Posted in Trained to Kill | Leave a Comment »

FBI in Spokane — Informant posed as The Valley Herald journalist

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 29, 2007

Given the illegal conduct of the U.S. government in the global-war on “terrorism”, the lawlessness of the Bush Administration and the U.S. Justice Department under Attorney-General Alberto Gonzalez, and the current showdown between the Spokane Police Department and the citizens of Spokane, it is important for all of us to understand the role and nature of the FBI and its history in Spokane.

Spokane is a relatively isolated, back-water town. It is the largest city at this longitude between Seattle and Minneapolis-St.Paul. At the same time, for a variety of reasons, Spokane has experienced a number of nationally-significant events which present an interesting opportunity to study FBI activities. Among those reasons are 1) the history of domestic terrorism in Spokane (two of the 17 domestic terrorism incidents in the US between 1990 and 1996 occurred in Spokane); 2) the presence of the Church of Jesus Christ of Aryan Nations; 3) major serial killer cases (Kevin Coe and Robert Lee Gates); 4) the Ruby Ridge case; and, as we now know, 5) the central role of Spokane in the development of torture techniques for the U.S. war on Islam.

The example below — FBI use of an informant posing as a journalist — comes from that 1990-1996 period of white Christian supremicist/white Christian separatist terrorism.

Anyone involved in any form of activism in Spokane today should clearly understand and keep in mind that the FBI, the Spokane Police Department, and other law enforcement agencies have our activities under surveillance and have infiltrated our organizations with informants.

To believe and act differently is to demonstrate ignorance and lack of understanding of the nature of J. Edgar’s legacy.


Journalists complain to FBI over informant posing as reporter


WASHINGTON–A former publisher of a weekly Spokane newspaper and the Society of Professional Journalists complained to the FBI in early August for allowing an agency informant to pose as a reporter during the investigation of a case in late 1995.

According to articles in The (Spokane) Spokesman-Review, David Elton III posed as a reporter from The (Spokane) Valley Herald while he was interviewing James Marks, a local leader of a Gypsy community, for the FBI. Marks was being investigated by the FBI for intimidating witnesses that sided with the city of Spokane in a civil rights case concerning a 1986 police raid of Marks’ home. Elton tape recorded his conversations with Marks and gave them to the agency.

U.S. Attorney Jim Connelly confirmed the FBI used Elton in the Marks case, according to the Spokesman-Review. The FBI has not made an official statement as to whether the agency knew Elton was posing as a journalist. Roberta Burroughs, an FBI spokesperson, said the FBI refused to comment on the incident, but added, “We do not direct FBI informants or agents to act as the media.”

Under Attorney General guidelines established in 1992, FBI agents can be authorized to pose as journalists under limited circumstances and with prior approval from supervisors. Attorney General Janet Reno told the American Society of Newspaper Editors in early 1995 that she was considering a request to create guidelines barring FBI and other federal agents from posing as journalists, according to an Editor & Publisher article. However, no action has been taken since then, according to the Justice Department.

Clark Hager, publisher of The Valley Herald at the time Elton posed as a journalist, wrote a letter to the FBI demanding an apology for allowing an informant to say he was a reporter from Hager’s paper. Hager stated that he was “highly incensed” by the FBI’s use of The Valley Herald and its reputation during an investigation.

The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press

Posted in FBI in Spokane | Leave a Comment »

All-White Spokane Police Department?

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 28, 2007

It would appear again that the Spokane Police Department is an all-white police force.

The photos on the Spokane Police Guild website point to that possibility (see slide show in prior entry at this same blogsite).

So does the new newsletter put out by Chief of Police Ann Kirkpatrick. Everyone portrayed, everyone commended, everyone awarded, everyone promoted is white.

Spokane Police Department Newsletter

One should not be surprised by this. Leaving aside the issue of the town’s history of blatant racism, it is one of the whitest per capita cities in the United States. In fact, per 1994 census data, it was the second whitest city per capita for all cities in the U.S. its size or larger. In other words, of all the cities in the U.S. the size of Spokane or larger, only Lincoln, Nebraska had fewer minorities per every hundred people than Spokane.

All-White Spokane Police Department

Posted in All-white SPD? | Leave a Comment »

Suicide by Cop? I’d have jumped too

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 28, 2007

After a botched attempt by the Spokane Police Department to taser him into submission, a suicidal Spokane man jumped to his death from Spokane’s Monroe Street Bridge mid-afternoon yesterday (7/27/07).

The situation on the Monroe Street Bridge reminds me of a scene from the 1992 version of The Last of the Mohicans starring American Indian Movement leader Dennis Means, Madeline Stowe, Daniel Day Lewis, and Wes Studi. In a scene late in the movie, the French-allied Huron Indian Magua is on a rampage of vengeance across the granite landscapes of the western frontier of the white colonies. He has taken as prisoner and presumed bride Alice, the youngest daughter of the British General Munro. At one point on a cliff trail while Magua’s party is in hot pursuit of Chingachgook, Uncas and Hawkeye, Alice steps to the edge of the cliff. Magua, demonstrating a frantic but fleeting moment of humanity, attempts to lure her back from the edge. Not surprisingly, she looks over her shoulder at the rocky abyss below and jumps to her death.

Faced yesterday with the Spokane Police Department’s homicidal history and deceptive tactics, a Spokane man, 28-year-old Josh Levy, chose to jump.

According to the Spokane Police, he had been on other bridges in the past and had threatened to jump. And he survived every time.

Faced with the Spokane Police Department, I would have jumped too.

Remember how on September 22, 2003, the Spokane Police shot 17-year-old Lewis and Clark student Sean Fitzpatrick in the face, arm, and torso rather than to wait him out or allow his father to intervene?

Who do these cops think they are?

As a social worker over more than 25 years I was disappointed — and said so publicly — when I heard recently that the Spokane Police had made a pact with our local county mental health agency to work more closely together in the field. As I read it, essentially someone has convinced Spokane mental health workers that they are at such risk that they should put the lives of the public and those mentally ill they pretend to help at risk by putting the trigger-happy, taser-trained Spokane Police Department in a position to assert its law enforcement “discretion” in determining when to stop mental health intervention and turn it over the gun-totters from the police.

Spokane Police Chief Ann Kirkpatrick — lawyer, police officer, and public relations’ master that she is — managed to get a picture on the front page of the Spokesman-Review of herself “consoling” the victim’s family on the Monroe Street Bridge immediately after the incident.

The SPD and other law enforcement in Spokane are busy training themselves in the use of every possible type of weapon, crowd control device, and technique of submission one can imagine. These individuals in their periodic training on dealing with conflict and human nature always have one bottom line.

They are the law, they are the ones with the discretion, they are the ones who get to call it over when they decide it is over.

And so it is over for one more Spokane citizen who suffered the botched “rescue” efforts of the Spokane Police Department. For all the SPD’s police training, all their psychological profiles, all their “we know better because we are the police”, the outcome is still the same.

One more dead Spokane citizen.

I have one thing to say.

Get the *&$!# out of my face, officer!

The Chief said that they were offering this poor man the opportunity to save face.

Chief, it is time for you to save face.

Publicly confront the Spokane Police Guild. Put your career and credibility and your democratic credentials on the line for the people of Spokane.

It is time for you, Chief Kirkpatrick, to come out openly and unequivocally for immediate independent oversight of the Spokane Police Department in the form of a Boise-style Ombudsperson.

Furthermore, you should bring an immediate end to the practice of killings by your officers being investigated by the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office and vice versa.

We are sick and tired of being the victims of Spokane PD brutality, arrogance, and faulty judgment.

Either you are the Chief, Ann, or you are not. We are awaiting your choice.

Posted in Independent Oversight | Leave a Comment »

ACLU: Know Your Rights

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 27, 2007

(This guidance from the ACLU on what to do if stopped by the police is offered for educational purposes only. The author of this blog understands that activists will act as their conscience and the exigencies of history require. The author also understands that following this ACLU guidance does not guarantee that anyone will be safe and secure in their person or property, not does it assure that the police will not lie, abuse or kill you.)


Know Your Rights: What to Do If You’re Stopped by the Police (7/30/2004)

To fight police abuse effectively you need to know your rights. There are some things you should do, some things you must do and some things you cannot do. If you are in the middle of a police encounter, you need a handy and quick reference to remind you what your rights and obligations are.

Print this page and carry it in your wallet, pocket, or glove compartment to give you quick access to your rights and obligations concerning police encounters. Download the PDF.


Think carefully about your words, movement, body language, and emotions.

Don’t get into an argument with the police.

Remember, anything you say or do can be used against you.

Keep your hands where the police can see them.

Don’t run. Don’t touch any police officer.

Don’t resist even if you believe you are innocent.

Don’t complain on the scene or tell the police they’re wrong or that you’re going to file a complaint.

Do not make any statements regarding the incident. Ask for a lawyer immediately upon your arrest.

Remember officers’ badge and patrol car numbers.

Write down everything you remember ASAP.

Try to find witnesses and their names and phone numbers.

If you are injured, take photographs of the injuries as soon as possible, but make sure you seek medical attention first.

If you feel your rights have been violated, file a written complaint with police department’s internal affairs division or civilian complaint board.


1. What you say to the police is always important. What you say can be used against you, and it can give the police an excuse to arrest you, especially if you bad-mouth a police officer.

2. You must show your driver’s license and registration when stopped in a car. Otherwise, you don’t have to answer any questions if you are detained or arrested, with one important exception. The police may ask for your name if you have been properly detained, and you can be arrested in some states for refusing to give it. If you reasonably fear that your name is incriminating, you can claim the right to remain silent, which may be a defense in case you are arrested anyway.

3. You don’t have to consent to any search of yourself, your car or your house. If you DO consent to a search, it can affect your rights later in court. If the police say they have a search warrant, ASK TO SEE IT.

4. Do not interfere with, or obstruct the police — you can be arrested for it.



1. It’s not a crime to refuse to answer questions, but refusing to answer can make the police suspicious about you. If you are asked to identify yourself, see paragraph 2 above.

2. Police may “pat-down” your clothing if they suspect a concealed weapon. Don’t physically resist, but make it clear that you don’t consent to any further search.

3. Ask if you are under arrest. If you are, you have a right to know why.

4. Don’t bad-mouth the police officer or run away, even if you believe what is happening is unreasonable. That could lead to your arrest.



1. Upon request, show them your driver’s license, registration, and proof of insurance. In certain cases, your car can be searched without a warrant as long as the police have probable cause. To protect yourself later, you should make it clear that you do not consent to a search. It is not lawful for police to arrest you simply for refusing to consent to a search.

2. If you’re given a ticket, you should sign it; otherwise you can be arrested. You can always fight the case in court later.

3. If you’re suspected of drunk driving (DWI) and refuse to take a blood, urine or breath test, your driver’s license may be suspended.



1. You have the right to remain silent and to talk to a lawyer before you talk to the police. Tell the police nothing except your name and address. Don’t give any explanations, excuses or stories. You can make your defense later, in court, based on what you and your lawyer decide is best.

2. Ask to see a lawyer immediately. If you can’t pay for a lawyer, you have a right to a free one, and should ask the police how the lawyer can be contacted. Don’t say anything without a lawyer.

3. Within a reasonable time after your arrest, or booking, you have the right to make a local phone call: to a lawyer, bail bondsman, a relative or any other person. The police may not listen to the call to the lawyer.

4. Sometimes you can be released without bail, or have bail lowered. Have your lawyer ask the judge about this possibility. You must be taken before the judge on the next court day after arrest.

5. Do not make any decisions in your case until you have talked with a lawyer.



1. If the police knock and ask to enter your home, you don’t have to admit them unless they have a warrant signed by a judge.

2. However, in some emergency situations (like when a person is screaming for help inside, or when the police are chasing someone) officers are allowed to enter and search your home without a warrant.

3. If you are arrested, the police can search you and the area close by. If you are in a building, “close by” usually means just the room you are in.

We all recognize the need for effective law enforcement, but we should also understand our own rights and responsibilities — especially in our relationships with the police. Everyone, including minors, has the right to courteous and respectful police treatment.

If your rights are violated, don’t try to deal with the situation at the scene. You can discuss the matter with an attorney afterwards, or file a complaint with the Internal Affairs or Civilian Complaint Board.

Produced by the American Civil Liberties Union.

Posted in Know Your Rights | Leave a Comment »

Lady in a Red Suit: Know Your Rights

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 27, 2007

CNN Reporter Susan Candiotti: Do you stand behind the events of that day, the shooting that day?

Broward Co. Sheriff Major John Brooks: Yes, we do. Yes, we do.

Posted in Know Your Rights, Videos | Leave a Comment »

Unanswered questions for Spokane reporters, activists and citizens

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 26, 2007

Have “high-value detainees” been flown into Fairchild, Felts Field, Spokane International Airport, the helicopter landing pad at Spokane’s SERE/JPRA site or other Spokane locations to be subject to interrogation and torture? What involvement exists between the Spokane Police Department and the Spokane County Sherriff’s Department with the SERE/JPRA program? How many SPD and SCSD personnel are graduates of SERE/JPRA and other government or private coercive interrogation training programs? (Aerial photo of SERE/JPRA site at 11604 Newkirk Road)

What is the level of collaboration in surveillance of U.S. citizens, Spokane area activists, members of the media, and others by government agencies in the Spokane area–FBI, DEA, ATF, USCIS (formerly INS), Spokane Police Department, Spokane County Sherriff’s and others–as well as involvement of contracted companies and organizations such as SERE Solutions, Inc.

Why has the 12th Special Forces Group–which supposedly hasn’t existed for more than a decade–been listed for years in the DEX phone directory listing (click on thumbnail below for page 25 of the 2005 Spokane Qwest Dex phone entry and look at bottom of left column) for the U.S. Army Mann Hall Army Reserve Center in Spokane, Washington? The specific listing is for Detachment B4 and B5 Co B 3rd BN 12th Special Forces Group. What is the non-existent 12th Special Forces Group and its personnel actually doing in Spokane? (Hint: Think SERE, think torture, think human rights abuses).

2005 Qwest DEX entry for 12th Special Forces Group in Spokane, WA

Why is Ciber, Inc. at the same Mann Hall Army Reserve Center in Spokane? Ciber, you may know, is the same folks involved in, among many other things, the electronic vote fraud scandals of 2000 and 2004. Why when one calls the Mann Hall Army Reserve Center at 489-6441 does one get a message for Ray at Ciber, Inc.?

How many Spokane Police Officers are former U.S. military, what sort of training do they have, and how much of that training may help explain their attacks on protesters, killings of citizens, and other lawless behavior? (As an example, see the bio of 27 year Spokane Police Department officer Skip Pahvlischak, an instructor for this Team One Network tactics and weapons training ). http://www.teamonenetwork.com/TeamOneCatalog2007.pdf

Posted in Unanswered Questions | Leave a Comment »

Ward Churchill: Know Your Rights

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 26, 2007

“It’s not about break, it’s not about bend, it’s not about compromise. It’s not about negotiating your rights. If you negotiate your rights, you have no rights.”

Ward Churchill, University of Colorado Professor, July 24, 2007


Video — Perpetual War: State Sponsored Terrorism (Speech by Ward Churchill)

Posted in Know Your Rights, Videos | Leave a Comment »

Testimony: Mother and son recount 7/8/07 harassment and threats by Spokane Police Officer

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 25, 2007

In response to my request for testimonies, first hand accounts, witness accounts, and other reflections on Spokane’s police legitimacy crisis, I received the following e-mail from Spokane blogger “Unholycrap” regarding the harassment of and threats against her son on July 8, 2007:

(quote) My son, who was involved with the 4th of July March for Rights, was harassed by a police officer who stopped him while he was walking to the store one night. He asked my son what he was doing. My son said he was going to the store. Duh. He then asked my son if he had been part of the protest on the 4th, to which my son replied that he had. The officer responded by telling him that they deserved to have their asses kicked. My son said something to the cop to the effect of “that’s not a right thing to say” (can’t remember exactly) and asked the officer for his badge number. The cop then just drove off.We have seen cops repeatedly cruising past our house very slowly, looking while I’m outside smoking a cigarette. Sometimes they even stop and just look, so I will reach back and close my door. I don’t want them thinking they can even use their eyes without a warrant. I don’t think a day goes by that this doesn’t happen. Maybe they are trying to intimidate, but it doesn’t work. I watch them back.

I have no idea why this is going on. My son has done nothing wrong. Nothing. He’s a good kid with an amazing head on his shoulders. I joined him at the march to City Hall and sat in council chambers with the rest of the people. Maybe I got profiled, too. Who knows? Regardless, I’m not pleased, but I’m not backing down. I will still drive around this town with my “Legalize Picnics” sign in my car. (end quote)

The author of the above comment also posted her son’s version of the 7/8/07 events on her blog at UnholyCrap.wordpress.com . They are reproduced here for your convenience:

(quote) This is a bulletin posted on MySpace by my son on 7/8/07:

So i went to Yoke’s to get some Little Debbie’s, right? Well, right behind Yoke’s, the road goes into a T, and all i have to do is walk on the side of the store to get to the front. Well, on my way there, i get to the T only to have a police vehicle honk and pull up to me. The cop didn’t get out of the car, but he stopped and asked where i was heading. I said to Yoke’s to get a snack. He then stared me down then asked; “Were you at that protest on the 4th?”. Without fear, i told him i was. He then glared at me and said; “It’s about time you retards get your asses beat!”. Being angered, i told him i didn’t like his language toward me, i then demanded his badge number. He told me i didn’t have that right, and he told me to have a good night and he drove off. I wish i had a fucking pen to copy the license plate number. (end quote)

This young man also testified to these same events at the 7/9/07 Spokane City Council meeting.

Posted in Testimonies | Leave a Comment »


Posted by Arroyoribera on July 25, 2007

After attending and reflecting on tonight’s meeting of the Spokane Human Rights Commission, I decided to post this information here. As it turns out, Spokane is a front in some of the ugliest aspects of the U.S. war on the world.

It is time that Spokanites no longer be allowed to claim ignorance of events occurring in our community which are part and parcel of the brutalizing and torturing of the people of this globe. During the 1960s and early 1970s, Spokane’s Fairchild Air Force Base played a crucial role in the aerial genocide of the Vietnamese people. As a legacy of that period, Fairchild still houses 85 nuclear weapons as part of the U.S. strategic reserve, making Fairchild home to more nuclear weapons than Iraq, Iran, and North Korea. With KC-135 aerial refuelers flying out of Fairchild from the start of the Clinton air war on Iraq until now, Spokane and Fairchild play a central role in another barbaric and illegal US war. And beyond the “clean, surgical killing” carried out with the aid of Spokane-based aircraft, we now know that Spokane has played a central part in years of physical torture and psychological abuse being carried out in U.S. military and CIA-run facilities in Guantanamo (Cuba), Iraq, Afghanistan, Europe, and elsewhere.

About three years ago, I began to raise 3 questions in e-mails to the media, legislators, and activists:

1) If the U.S. trains its world-class pilots in interrogation and torturer resistance training at the U.S. Air Force Survival School (SERE/JPRA) at Fairchild, isn’t it logical that the U.S. also brings world class interrogators and torturers to Spokane to pit against these pilots and train to “better” conduct real torture?

2) Why has the 12th Special Forces Group–which supposedly hasn’t existed for more than a decade–been listed for years in the DEX phone directory listing (click on thumbnail below for page 25 of the 2005 Spokane Qwest Dex phone entry and look at bottom of left column) for the U.S. Army Mann Hall Army Reserve Center in Spokane, Washington? The specific listing is for Detachment B4 and B5 Co B 3rd BN 12th Special Forces Group. What is the non-existent 12th Special Forces Group and its personnel actually doing in Spokane? (Hint: Think SERE, think torture, think human rights abuses).

Qwest DEX Listing for 12th Special Force Group

3) Why is Ciber, Inc. at the same Mann Hall Army Reserve Center in Spokane the Army Reserve Center in Spokane, Washington? Ciber, you may know, is the same folks involved in, among many other things, in the electronic vote fraud scandal.

Among the items you will find in this post are two videos of waterboarding–one an MSNBC reporter describing his experience being waterboarded and another which will make it clear why we are hated around the world.

At the bottom of this very long post, you will find additional Unanswered questions for Spokane reporters, broadcasters, activists & citizens. I ask you to do your own research and share it here and elsewhere. There is a war to stop, and administration to impeach, and a world to reconstruct.

(Update from original version posted 6/27/07–from original & source materials)

(All blue underlined words and phrases are links to websites, documents, maps, etc).

Fairchild AFB is home to a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape (SERE) Program. SERE Programs train soldiers, seaman, airmen, CIA operatives, and others–including foreign nationals–in resistance techniques. However, they also provide military and other government torturers, trainers, foreign nationals, contractors (aka US government mercenaries employed by corporations such as Blackwater, CACI International, Titan Corp, and SAIC) and psychologists, among others, the opportunity to develop, refine, practice and polish their torture techniques.

In their must-read June 29, 2007 Spokesman-Review article, reporters Karen Dorn Steele and Bill Morlin reveal that “the SERE program is used by the Army at Fort Bragg, where Green Berets train, and at the U.S. Air Force Survival School near Spokane, where thousands of other trainees are instructed annually.” Using first-hand reporting and research as well as reporting from sources such as the New Yorker and Salon.com, Dorn Steele and Morlin reveal the role of Spokane area psychologists and businesses in the U.S. government’s reverse-engineering of torture resistance training.

These techniques of torture–witnessed at Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo and other U.S. facilities around the world–have been employed by the U.S. government, military, intelligence agencies, contractors and foreign agents with the express purpose of breaking human beings as part of the global U.S. “war on terror”. That so-called “war on terror” has produced worldwide denunciations of U.S. preemptive attacks, massacres of civilians, torture, disappearances, use of “depleted” uranium, and other actions which are illegal under international standards and laws.

* * *

Fairchild’s SERE Program — The premiere Air Force SERE program

* * *

In fact, not only is Fairchild home to a SERE program, it is home to an even more exclusive and secret program, SERE/JPRA (Joint Personnel Recovery Agency). This unclassified Department of Defense (DOD) memo shows that the SERE/JPRA site at the PRA White Bluff Site at 11604 W. NEWKIRK ROAD, SPOKANE, WA 99224 was the host in May 2007 of the DOD SERE Conference and the DOD SERE Psychology Conference.

As the memo shows, foreign government representatives from the U.S. government’s Iraq “coalition” partners participated in the two conferences as did three representatives from each of the FBI, DEA, and CIA. In point of fact, the facility has all the markings of a CIA facility such as those at Warrenton, VA and other locations in the U.S. (compare the similarity between the facility maps by clicking the respective links above).

On September 16, 2002, a prior SERE Psychologist Conference was hosted by the Army Special Operations Command and the Joint Personnel Recovery Agency at Fort Bragg for JTF-170 (the military component responsible for interrogations at Guantanamo) interrogation personnel. The Army’s Behavioral Science Consultation Team from Guantanamo Bay also attended the conference. Joint Personnel Recovery Agency personnel briefed JTF-170 representatives on the exploitation and methods used in resistance (to interrogation) training at SERE schools. The purpose was the reverse engineering of interrogation resistance to design more “effective” torture techniques. (See “Shrinks and the SERE Techniques at Guantanamo“)

Wording in the declassified memo indicates that topics dealt with at the SERE Psychology Conference include such topics as how to conduct psychological and other forms of torture in a way that is psychologically and morally palatable to the torturer as well as how to justify those actions under the law and in a way that can be argued to be “ethical” and “legal”. The memo states, “The first two days will focus on sere/code of conduct issues and reintegration. The remaining three days involve discussion and training on ethic, research, and SERE Orientation training”. (See conference agenda here).


* * *

Torture, the Geneva Conventions and the School of the Americas

By Ann Wright, US Army Reserve Colonel

(quote) Do Special Operations Forces of the Army, Navy Marines and Air Force practice on detainees the interrogation techniques they are subjected to during their Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape (SERE) training at Ft. Bragg, NC, Fairchild, Air Force Base, WA and Naval Air Stations in Brunswick, ME and North Island, San Diego, CA? What are the limits of abusive interrogation techniques taught to CIA and CIA contract interrogators in the various CIA training areas around the Washington, DC and other locations in the US? (end quote)

* * *

Report of the Department of Defense Inspector General, August 25, 2006

DOD Interrogation TechniquesThe Office of the DoD Inspector General produced a Review of DoD-Directed Investigations of Detainee Abuse (Report No. 06-INTEL-10) on August 25, 2006.

(excerpt) The report made three findings. One of them was
that SERE, a course designed to prepare selected American forces to withstand interrogations that did not abide by the Geneva Conventions, was turned into a program for harsh, coercive interrogation. In this way, a course of training to resist cruel, degrading, and inhumane treatment was transformed into a program to counter this very resistance. This program was carried out in the interrogation of Guantánamo prisoners before it “migrated” to Iraq. Officially, Guantánamo prisoners were not entitled to the protections afforded by the Geneva Conventions; Iraqi prisoners were. The finding in question is entitled “DoD Interrogation Techniques …”

* * *

Physicians for Human Rights letter to Secretary of Defense Robert Gates regarding SERE

(excerpt) The OIG additionally found that the SERE methods later became the standard operating procedure for interrogations conducted in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and had migrated from Guantanamo due, in part, to training and support from JPRA, BSCT, and Special Operations psychologists and others. (end excerpt)

* * *

“Improving the Fighting Position”: A Practitioner’s Guide to Operational Law Support to the Interrogation Process (From the July 2005 edition of The Army Lawyer )

(quote) This balance between legitimate manipulation and inhumane treatment in the form of physical or mental abuse orcoercion is articulated as a key principle of interrogation operations in FM 34-52:

The GWS, GPW, GC, and US policy expressly prohibit acts of violence or intimidation, including physical or mental torture, threats, insults, or exposure to inhumane treatment as a means of or aid to interrogation.

Experience indicates that the use of prohibited techniques is not necessary to gain the cooperation
of interrogation sources. Use of torture and other illegal methods is a poor technique that yields unreliable results, may damage subsequent collection efforts, and can induce the source to say what he thinks the interrogator wants to hear. (end quote)

* * *

Spokane Journal — June 2007– It’s No Game at Base’s Survival School

* * *

The Torture Question Frontline Special Watch it online Public Affairs - KYRS Programmers Collective

Abu Ghraib photos

The Abu Ghraib files by Joan Walsh — A 10-part evidentiary series from inside Abu Ghraib prison accompanied by 279 photographs and 19 videos based on the U.S. Army’s own investigation of the three month period from October 17-December 30, 2003. Nine essays follow the photos and videos.

Iraqi woman detainee in U.S. custody.

* * *

(excerpt) In fact, there are likely people being “tortured” in this manner as we speak at Fairchild Air Force base Washington as a part of their “Land Survival” program (the POW resistance training). The only difference is that those at Fairchild have in the back of their minds the fact that their “torture” is only going to last 2 days. Many different career fields go through that training. Most field intelligence, anyone who flies (pilots and aircrew), SERE naturally, special forces and a few others.

* * *

(Excerpt from Trip Report Summary of Commissioner Elaine Donnelly). During her two-day trip to Fairchild AFB, Washington, August 9-11, 1992, Donnelly talked to instructors about their realistic “rape scenario,” in which male trainees are taught to manage more intense feelings when a female colleague is threatened with sexual assault or worse, so that enemy captors cannot exploit those emotions. Donnelly described parts of the SERE training that she saw at Fairchild Air Force Base during her visit:

Without knowing what to expect, I found myself locked in a cramped black box that was both physically and psychologically uncomfortable. I also participated in and witnessed interrogation exercises designed to suggest but not duplicate the physical and emotional stress of being a POW. As the night wore on, a sense of cultural dissonance began to overcome the camp’s logic of equality in the simulation of brutality.

A woman I watched being interrogated was very capable, but she was totally in the power of a man much stronger than she. What I saw was an unmistakable element of inequality that-in the opinion of many Commission witnesses-cannot be overcome by peacetime training programs or psychological techniques. As the interrogation continued, it was easy to visualize the possibility of sexual abuse as well as physical harm at the hands of a menacing enemy. For reasons of survival, the SERE training for aircrew members makes sense. . . . However, the politically-correct unisex nature of the resistance training is very seductive; it is easy to become “desensitized,” meaning accustomed, to the idea that men and women are interchangeable equals in a world of torture and abuse. The SERE trainers asserted that the entire nation must prepare itself for this very real possibility if women are assigned to combat positions.

* * *

(excerpt) An interview with trainers at the Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape training center at Fairchild Air Force Base uncovered a logical but disturbing consequence of assigning women to combat: “If a policy change is made, and women are allowed into combat positions, there must be a concerted effort to educate the American public on the increased likelihood that women will be raped, will come home in bodybags, and will be exploited..” (end excerpt)


* * *




* * *

Robert Johnson, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A.
This Doctor of Clinical Preventative Medicine and Family Medicine proudly lists on his resume USAF Survival, Escape, Evasion and Resistance (SERE) Training, Fairchild AFB, WA, Sep-Oct 1990

* * *

Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape Training Instructor Course. The 66th Training Squadron based at Fairchild Air Force Base, Spokane, Washington, conducts the survival, evasion, resistance, and escape (SERE) training instructor course in select areas of Washington and Oregon. The course is a physically demanding six-month program designed to teach future SERE instructors how to teach aircrew members to survive in any environment. The course includes instruction in basic survival, medical, land navigation, evasion, arctic survival, teaching techniques, rough-land evacuation, coastal survival, tropics/river survival, and desert survival.

* * *

(quote) The SERE program also uses waterboarding, continual bombardment by loud noise, and sexual humiliation. Several sources told Mayer that psychologists trained in SERE techniques had advised interrogators at Guantánamo and elsewhere. One of the most disturbing things about the article is its suggestion that what started out as a stupid means of getting information evolved into pure sadism. As a retired colonel who attended a SERE school as part of his Special Forces training said, “If you did too much of that stuff, you could really get to like it. You can manipulate people. And most people like power.” (end quote)

* * *


Senate probe focuses on Spokane men

Karen Dorn Steele and Bill Morlin
Spokesman-Review Staff writers
June 29, 2007

Two Spokane psychologists are the focus of a congressional inquiry into the use of harsh techniques to interrogate terrorist suspects in Guantanamo, Iraq, Afghanistan and other secret military and CIA detention centers.

In an article published last week, the online magazine Salon.com identified psychologists James E. Mitchell and John Bruce Jessen as key developers of the interrogation program — which the magazine said was linked to the CIA and likely violated the Geneva Conventions against the torture and mistreatment of prisoners.

The interrogation methods, according to a recently declassified Pentagon report reviewed by The Spokesman-Review, are “reverse engineering” of techniques taught in the military’s SERE program, set up to train U.S. special forces and flight crews in the principles of Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape.

The SERE program is used by the Army at Fort Bragg, where Green Berets train, and at the U.S. Air Force Survival School near Spokane, where thousands of other trainees are instructed annually.
(cont’d at http://www.spokesmanreview.com/breaking/story.asp?ID=10496 )

* * *

SERE SOLUTIONS, INC — SERE Solutions, Inc., is owned by Spokane-based contractor Michael Lyons. In 2006 Lyons received a $47 million US Air Force grant with the 336th SERE Training Group at Fairchild AFB after 2 years of extensive assistance from the Washington State College of Business Small Business Development Center. Lyons operation employs at least 37 people in various locations.

SERE Solutions, Inc, lists an address of 6603 S. Shelby Ridge Rd., Spokane, WA. Interestingly, that same address was the site of the Democratic Party Sixth Legislative District Precinct No. 6151 meeting in 2004.

SERE SOLUTIONS INC (6603 S SHELBY RIDGE RD; small business): $2,161,904 in 2 contracts in 2006 $2,146,904 with Air Force for Training/Curriculum Development. Signed on 2006-03-20. Completion date: 2006-09-30. $15,000, same as above. Signed on 2006-06-28. Completion date: 2006-09-30.

* * *

For more information, cut and paste the following lists of words into an internet search engine:

USAF Survival Escape Evasion and Resistance Training Fairchild AFB
SERE Fairchild torture
SERE Spokane

* * *

Torture Teachers — Salon article
Open Letter to President of American Psychological Association
More Waterboarding (video) — not quite as sanitary as this military training video
Free Soul Jah–The CIA, Torture & George Tenet’s Body Language (Video of a CIA director in action)
(See the Cryptome Eyeball Series at http://eyeball-series.org/ )

* * *

For more on Blackwater:
Iraq for Sale (video excerpt)
Blackwater: America’s Private Army (video)
Blackwater @ www.sourcewatch.org

* * *

Unanswered questions for Spokane reporters, broadcasters, activists & citizens:

Have “high-value detainees” been flown into Fairchild, Felts Field, Spokane International Airport, the helicopter landing pad at Spokane’s SERE/JPRA site at 11604 Newkirk Road or other Spokane locations to be subject to interrogation and torture?

What involvement exists between the Spokane Police Department and the Spokane County Sherriff’s Department with the SERE/JPRA program? How many SPD and SCSD personnel are graduates of SERE/JPRA and other government or private coercive interrogation training programs?

What is the level of collaboration in surveillance of U.S. citizens, Spokane area activists, members of the media, and others by government agencies in the Spokane area–FBI, DEA, ATF, USCIS (formerly INS), Spokane Police Department, Spokane County Sherriff’s and others–as well as involvement of contracted companies and organizations such as SERE Solutions, Inc.

Why has the 12th Special Forces Group–which supposedly hasn’t existed for more than a decade–been listed for years in the DEX phone directory listing (click on thumbnail below for page 25 of the 2005 Spokane Qwest Dex phone entry and look at bottom of left column) for the U.S. Army Mann Hall Army Reserve Center in Spokane, Washington? The specific listing is for Detachment B4 and B5 Co B 3rd BN 12th Special Forces Group. What is the non-existent 12th Special Forces Group and its personnel actually doing in Spokane? (Hint: Think SERE, think torture, think human rights abuses).

Qwest DEX Listing for 12th Special Force Group

Why is Ciber, Inc. at the same Mann Hall Army Reserve Center in Spokane? Ciber, you may know, is the same folks involved in, among many other things, the electronic vote fraud scandals of 2000 and 2004. Why when one calls the Mann Hall Army Reserve Center at 489-6441 does one get a message for Ray at Ciber, Inc.?

How many Spokane Police Officers are former U.S. military, what sort of training do they have, and how much of that training may help explain their attacks on protesters, killings of citizens, and other lawless behavior? (As an example, see the bio of 27 year Spokane Police Department officer Skip Pahvlischak, an instructor for this Team One Network tactics and weapons training). http://www.teamonenetwork.com/TeamOneCatalog2007.pdf

Posted in Freedom to Fascism, Mitchell and Jessen, Videos, War Abroad & At Home | Leave a Comment »

The Clash: Know Your Rights

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 23, 2007

[Stop the video at 4:14 to see a police officer assaulting a camera person.]

Posted in Know Your Rights, Videos, War Abroad & At Home | Leave a Comment »

Police Harassing Spokane Youth?

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 23, 2007

Interviews with Spokane young people reveal a disturbing pattern of random stops, improper questioning, illegal searches and unprovoked threats by the Spokane Police Department, particularly in the dark of night.

Please send your accounts of harassment by the Spokane Police and/or other law enforcement, including but not limited to the Spokane Sheriff’s Office, the FBI, Riverfront Park security, and other private security forces.

In addition, please send web links on the legal limits of police powers as well your own thoughts on how the community can address this unconstitutional and–given the Spokane Police history of killing its own citizens–extraordinarily dangerous trend of law enforcement stopping Spokane youth in the night for no legitimate reason.

Finally, if you are aware of details of an incident in the last few days in the Spokane Valley in which law enforcement yanked a bikini-clad female from a vehicle and threw her to the ground, please contact me as well.

Posted in Spokane Police vs. Youth | 1 Comment »

Arming Ourselves Against State Repression and Police Brutality

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 22, 2007

Spokane Police photo of July 4, 2007 Riverfront Park citizen armed with camera

(This photo is from a series of Spokane Police Department photos taken in Riverfront Park on July 4, 2007 just prior to the attack on protesters by the Spokane Police Tactical Unit and Riverfront Park security guards. The young woman with the camera is locked and loaded in an act of collective self-defense. Behind the woman with the orange pack is Spokesman-Review reporter Jonathan Blunt.)



by David Brookbank

Your father killed his share of Vietnamese civilians ever-so-bravely flying the world’s largest bomber in internationally prohibited missions at 30,000 feet under cover of darkness, cloud cover, altitude, and fighter cover.

Your uncle — in the name of defending a piece of red,white and blue cloth — has kicked down untold numbers of doors of Iraqi families, elbowed elderly women out of the way, and thrown young men on the floor while threatening to rape their sisters. He even told you how he believes that since we decided not to nuke the whole Middle East at the start of the “war” that the only way to deal now with the “sand-niggers”, as he calls them, is to kill all their mothers.

Your best-friend’s sister was even part of a group of U.S. psychologists contracted by the CIA who determined that sodomizing Iraqis at Abu Ghraib was the way to win this unwinnable war of aggression and occupation.

You pay your taxes.

Your ancestors were brought to this god-forsaken land in slave-ships by Christian barbarians.

You are a free man or a free woman in a land of media lies, government propaganda, FBI spying, and police brutality.

What are you to do?

Fight the power. Stand your ground. Read and understand your history. Call a fascist a fascist. Strip away your illusions about the fundamental goodness of America and understand that there is no such thing.

Time to arm ourselves against state repression and police brutality.

And how do I propose that we do that? That is an individual matter.

Why do I say that? First, the people of the U.S. are misinformed and uninformed. Second, most people in the U.S. live in fear of expressing a public opinion on matters of state control and oppression as a result of the current national security apparatus put in place to allow such practices as spying on citizens, arbitrary arrest and indefinite detention.

In other words, the vast majority of us are so chronically disoriented in terms of political analysis and strategic thinking that we have no clear sense of how to proceed. Given that disorientation, you are not going to want to follow me and I am not going to follow you.

Therefore let’s go to the most basic level of collective self-defense.

And for the sake of the Homeland Security Nazis reading this, let us be clear — what I am proposing and all that I am proposing is:

Arm yourself with a camera. Whether that is a camera to take pictures or video, that is up to you. I prefer a video camera with the capacity to also take still photos or to derive still photos from the video footage.

Should every citizen carry a camera? Absolutely.

Would a citizen with a camera filming through the windows of the North Division Zip Trip in March 2006 have been able to prevent the murder of Otto Zehm by the Spokane Police Department? I believe so.

Would it be beneficial to public safety and the sanctity of the truth to have had video footage taken with a camera owned and operated by a Spokane activist or a little old grandpa of the moment in which the Spokane Police claim that Zach St. John attacked a Spokane Police officer and choked him to the point of gasping for air on July 4, 2007 in Riverfront Park?

Would it have been useful to have on video (as opposed to audio only) of Rick Mendoza of the Spokane Police Department’s Police Advisory Committee stating in early 2007 at the ACLU sponsored forum on Police Accountability that the Spokane Police Department is the best police department in the United States? Or NAACP President V. Ann Smith (also now a member of the Police Advisory Committee) stating at the same event that there is no longer a problem with racial profiling in Spokane?

We the people are in need of a reality check. Yes, we are very busy. Yes, life is expensive. Yes, time is short.

And in a “don’t worry, be happy” society like ours, no one wants to be tagged as “too serious”.

But let’s get real. If you are an anti-imperialist, anti-ruling class, anti-militarist citizen, neither your city council, your state elected officials, nor your U.S. congresspersons are going to defend you in any concrete way.

I can tell you by experience that you will be lucky to find adequate legal representation for your court case.

Liberal groups and progressive bloggers will be no where to be found or will be so confused by their own fear of the police and the apparatus of state repression in a time of war that they may do your cause more harm than good.

So what is next? Buy that camera. If it is a video camera, start doing local documentaries at the same time. Film candidate forums. Interview locals about their views on SERE, Wilbur Vault, Kendall Yards, and ASAP.

If nothing else, you can take footage for your insurance claim when you are hit by another car. As we all know, the odds of having the SPD respond to ordinary police matters is next to none.

However, keep one thing perfectly clear in your mind. Once you are armed, you are a target.

The Los Angeles Police Department’s militarized units were not deterred for one second in violently repressing the demonstration in MacArthur Park on May 1, 2007. Neither women and children nor reporters and cameramen from major national and international news organizations were spared. Reporters in Iraq have been targeted by and killed by U.S. forces over and over again. And as one might expect in this era, the U.S. holds journalists at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Will the Spokane Police crack your head open for being a citizen in possession of a camera at a protest or arrest or other event of public interest?

Is a camera a weapon?

The answer to that question is also the answer to the prior question.

Beware the unchecked power of the Spokane Police Department, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office, the FBI, Riverfront Park security, Federal Protective Police and other law enforcement agencies.

Straight Talk: Video Taping Police

Videotaping Police — Flex Your Rights

Spokane Police photo of July 4, 2007 Riverfront Park citizen armed with camera

(This photo is from a series of Spokane Police Department photos taken in Riverfront Park on July 4, 2007 just prior to the attack on protesters by the Spokane Police Tactical Unit and Riverfront Park security guards. The young woman with the camera is locked and loaded in an act of collective self-defense. Behind the woman with the orange pack is Spokesman-Review reporter Jonathan Blunt.)

Posted in Freedom to Fascism, In Collective Self-Defense, Know Your Rights, Photographic Evidence, Protest and Free Speech, Spokane Police vs. Youth, War Abroad & At Home | Leave a Comment »

Spokane Police Brutality on Camera

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 22, 2007

Spokane Police officer choking protester Dan Treecraft on June 27, 2007

Video: Spokane Police officer choking protester at Alberto Gonzales visit to Spokane on June 27, 2007

(Author note: Anyone with information as to the identity of the dark-haired man in the suit and black moustache seen in the upper right hand corner of this photo and throughout this video monitoring the brutality against protester Dan Treecraft is asked to e-mail me at arroyoribera@earthlink.net )

Posted in Photographic Evidence, Videos | Leave a Comment »

America: Freedom to Fascism

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 21, 2007

Freedom to Fascism






Posted in Freedom to Fascism | Leave a Comment »

Who is Jason Oakley?

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 21, 2007

Well, I’m glad you asked.

Jason Oakley is an FBI agent operating out of the FBI’s Spokane Field Offices in the basement of the Rock Point Towers at 316 W. Boone, at the corner of Boone and Washington, just north of downtown Spokane. The Spokane FBI Office sports a large rooftop communication and intelligence gathering apparatus at that same location.

Oakley is likely the FBI agent running those persons — variously referred to as spies, informants, and analysts — who have infiltrated activist organizations in Spokane.

Reporting on an ACLU report about FBI spying on Spokane area groups and activists, reporter Jim Camden wrote in the May 25, 2007 edition of the Spokesman-Review that, “Federal agents kept track of antiwar demonstrations by the Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane at least since 2002, at one point apparently getting information from a “spy” in the group…” and that “the FBI gleaned information from the group’s Web site, including that PJALS mentioned the launch of a new public radio station, and had other material dealing with a protest in the local office of then-U.S. Rep. George Nethercutt”. The radio station referred to is KYRS Thin Air Community Radio 92.3 FM Spokane.

Oakley most recently has been harassing and monitoring young activists of the ASAP organization and other local activists.

On May 24, 2004, Oakley told David Brookbank, who was attempting to file a civil rights complaint, that “I don’t know anything about civil rights. I do terrorism.” Oakley then stated that he was the only person in the office available to help and took Brookbank’s report. Oakley, the Spokane FBI Field Office, and the Seattle Offices of the FBI all subsequently denied ever having received such a complaint from Mr. Brookbank. This despite the fact that in a front page Spokesman-Review article on May 6, 2004, then Spokane Deputy Police Chief Al Odenthal had said that the Spokane Police would be turning the case over to the FBI.

Not surprisingly, Mr. Oakley and the FBI are liars. In Jim Camden’s May 25, 2007 Spokesman-Review article, FBI special agent Rich Kolko is quoted as saying, “We don’t purge records. If we write something down, we keep it.” Yet the FBI denies having any notes from Brookbank’s meeting with Oakley, despite the fact that Oakley wrote the notes on a gray legal pad and despite telling Mr. Brookbank when he asked for a report number that “the report number is your name and the date”.

Should you sight Jason Oakley (or his spies, informants and analysts), please notify Spokane area organizations and blogs.

(For further information on the FBI in Spokane, please see FBI Watchlist — Spokane Edition).


ACLU Calls for Independent Oversight of FBI (7/13/2007) http://www.aclu.org/safefree/general/30569prs20070713.html

ACLU Freedom of Information Request http://aclu-wa.org/library_files/FOIA-%20DFISR.pdf

National Security Letters http://www.aclu.org/safefree/nationalsecurityletters/29064leg20070319.html

Posted in FBI in Spokane, Jason Oakley and the FBI | Leave a Comment »

Laying out the case…

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 19, 2007

Re-posted by Arroyoribera on November12, 2007


(Posted originally on July 19th, 2007 and updated regularly)

November 1909 — (quote) On November 2, 1909, the city government at Spokane, Washington, started to arrest the speakers of the I. W. W. (International Workers of the World) for holding street meetings. The locals at that point decided to fight the city and force it to allow the organization to hold street meetings. The fight lasted up to the first of March following, and resulted in compelling the city to pass a law allowing street speaking. Over 500 men and women went to jail during the free speech fight. Two hundred went on a hunger strike that lasted from 11 to 13 days, and then went from 30 to 45 days on bread and water; two ounces of bread per day. Four members lost their lives as a result of the treatment accorded them in this fight. (end quote) http://www.iww.org/cic/history/V_St_John.html

March 5, 1913 — Officer Frederick E. Goddard was “accidentally shot” during a training exercise and died. He was the first black member of the Spokane Police Department to die in the “line of duty”. He had served in law enforcement for five years and was survived by his wife and four children. http://www.ntoa.org/2007TrainingDeathsReport.pdf

September 1935 — In the 1980s Pend Oreille County Sheriff Tony Bamonte detailed the involvement of a Spokane police detective involved in the 1935 cover-up of the shooting death of Newport, Washington marshal George Conniff.

February 12, 1939 — Officer John H. Miller was accidentally shot and killed while attending an FBI training school in Washington, DC. The accident occurred as a result of practicing “quick draws” with another attendee. The other officer forgot he had reloaded his weapon when Officer Miller requested to run through the exercise one last time before dinner. http://www.ntoa.org/2007TrainingDeathsReport.pdf

January 15, 1962 — Airman 3rd class Olaguibeet Angel Lopez-Pacheco Vera from the 84th Consolidated Maintanence Squadron at Geiger Field was killed by Spokane Police officers Dennis R. Apperson and Richard E. Luders. Also present was Sgt. James D. Worsham of the Fairchild Air Force Base police liaison detail. Both Lopez and his father, a prominent Puerto Rican veterinarian, were pro-Puerto Rico independence advocates. Lopez father, Olaguibeet Angel Lopez-Pacheco, filed a civil rights complaint with the FBI on March 29, 1962. As part of a Federal Tort Claim, he received 111 pages of information from the FBI in 1976 and another 98 pages in 1978. The information indicated that the pro-independence organization to which Lopez’s father belonged was a target of FBI Cointelpro surveillance starting in at least 1958.

April 1969 — Spokane Police told Gonzaga University president John P. Leary he would be arrested in relation to charges of sexual abuse of minor boys unless he left town immediately. Thankful for the tip, Leary did obligingly leave town, beginning the long peregrinations so well known to predatory clergy.

February 1981 — In the midst of the infamous South Hill Rapist case, Spokane Police Captain Richard Olberding commented that Spokane women should “just lay back and enjoy it”.

1986 — (quote) The Spokane Police Department’s Gypsy File, a document half an inch thick, has determined that crime constitutes our very culture: “scams, theft and confrontations with law enforcement officials is a way of life with Gypsies” (dated 1986, on page 9). (end quote) http://www.radoc.net:8088/RADOC-31-PROFILING.htm

March 19, 1986 — [per Washington State Supreme Court records] (quote) On or about March 19, 1986, a party was held on the Spokane Police Guild Club premises. These were premises licensed by the Washington State Liquor Control Board (Liquor Board). The party has been variously referred to as a bachelor party, stag show and strip show. The party was, in any event, given for a prospective bridegroom by his brother. A dancer performed at the party in a manner which, as it was subsequently determined, violated Liquor Board regulations. Forty or more people were in attendance. Following an investigation by an investigator for the Liquor Board, the club’s liquor license was suspended for 21 days. A reporter for the Spokesman Review and Spokane Chronicle newspapers requested a copy of the Liquor Board’s investigative report. The Liquor Board ultimately determined that it would release its full report on the incident. This suit was thereupon commenced by the Spokane Police Guild to enjoin the release of the records. The publisher of the newspapers, Cowles Publishing Company, and the City of Spokane were permitted to intervene in the suits. (end quote) The Spokane County Superior Court, the Court of Appeals and, finally in 1989, the Washington State Supreme Court all ruled in favor of the public’s right to know and against the Spokane Police Guild’s attempt to keep the information secret. This decision is widely cited and is considered a primary source of case law on the matter of public access and records disclosure.

August 15, 1991 — In a shootout with a crime suspect, Spokane Police shot and killed Kelly A. Miller in her home. With her children watching, Ms. Miller was killed by one of 50 shots fired by Spokane Police officers at John Chavers who had holed up in the Miller house. In response to the killing of his wife, Rod Miller, sued the city of Spokane for $5 million.

February 27, 1993 — Elwood Rayvon Lee, age 34, was shot in the head by Spokane Police officer Benjamin Estes. The Spokane Police had arrived at the Lee home unannounced and were met at the door by Mr. Lee carrying a rifle. Police alleged that Lee refused their order to drop the rifle and pointed it at them. Joan Lee, who witnessed her husband’s killing by the police along with her two children, sued the city of Spokane.

August 6, 1993 — Spokane Police Officer Jeffrey Harvey shot and killed a man said by two witnesses to be unarmed. On two prior ocassions, Harvey had been subject to disciplinary action for unauthorized use of force.

December 21, 1993 — (quote) Spokane Police Officer William Gentry pled not guilty on December 21, 1993 to alleged sexual assaults of two women described as mentally disabled. These attacks are alleged to have taken place while Gentry was in charge of the police station. According to a spokesperson for the Spokane police, Gentry has been discharged, but news reports suggest that he is receiving disability pay for a stress-related condition. Details of the allegations remain unclear, but at least some of the incidents are alleged to have taken place in the police station and while the victim was restrained with handcuffs. (end quote) — from Dick Sobsey, Educational Psychology, 6-102 Education North, University of Alberta

August 28, 1994 — Sidney McDermott, married and father of 5 children, was shot to death by Spokane Police after an officer followed him home. His wife sued the city for $9 million in a wrongful death lawsuit.

December 17, 1994 – Alleging that she pointed a gun at them, Spokane Police fatally shot —– Borgman. Police had gone to the location in response to a domestic violence report.

January 1, 1995 — Spokane police refused to identify a man they killed nor explain the cause of his death prior to the results of an autopsy.

March 8, 1995 — Blaine Dalrymple, a 38 year old man described by Spokane Police as mentally ill, was shot and killed by three Spokane police officers who alleged that attacked them with a piece of glass.

September 3, 1995 — A 28-year-old man died within minutes of being restrained by five officers and held at the the Spokane County Jail.

October 29, 1995 — Alledging that he had threatened them with a pellet gun, Spokane Police shot dead _____ Bolton.

December 13, 1995 — Spokane County Sheriff’s deputies shot and killed ______ Stowell. Police alleged that Stowell may have shot himself.

December 28, 1995 — Police killed a man after a vehicle pursuit following a bank robbery.

January 22, 1996 — An unidentified woman was shot to death at her home by two Spokane County sheriff’s deputies after she allegedly shot a third deputy in the chest with a shotgun. The deputy was not seriously injured.

January 23, 1996 — Scott Waterhouse died after being arrested on a warrant after a traffic stop by Spokane police. Police say that they don’t know why he died. Mr. Waterhouse was from Fairfield, CT.

November 2, 1996 — Spokane County Sheriff’s Deputy Thomas DiBartolo shot and killed his wife Patti DiBartolo. He then shot himself and invented a story that two Black men had committed the crime. Despite a plea by his teenage son against releasing DiBartolo, DiBartolo was released. He was subsequently convicted of 1st degree murder and sentence to 25 years in prison.

April 15, 1997 — Joe R. Lawson was shot to death by Spokane Police Officer Patrick Dobrow after he allegedly charged at them with a knife during a domestic violence call at his home. The Spokane County prosecutor ruled that the shooting was justified.

June 13, 1997 — Authorities claim that the death of Nicholas Struckman was a suicide in custody. Mr. Struckman’s father has come forward to question the police version of events.

April 28, 1998 — While Spokane Police chased him for violating a traffic regulation, 35 year old Christopher Kraft crashed his motorcycle and died.

June 12, 1998 — ___ Lefebvre was shot by a Spokane County Sheriff’s Department SWAT Team after a six-hour standoff. There is videotape of this incident, which reportedly shows police shooting the suspect as he retreats. Mr. Lefebvre was in a Spokane hospital in critical condition. It is not clear if he survived. He was supposedly wanted for a robbery and a carjacking.

May 27, 1999 — Spokane Police Chief Alan Chertok’s resigned his short tenure with the SPD are he told a high school class that prior Spokane Police Chief Terry Mangan was a suspect in the deaths of several area prostitutes.

June 2000 — “If a higher percentage of minorities are stopped for nonhazardous violations, it would kind of make you wonder,” Bragdon said (Spokane Police Chief Roger Bragdon). According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Spokane County’s population was 1.6 percent black as of 1996. Bragdon said 900 tickets out of 29,000 – about 3 percent – were given to black drivers last year. If initial traffic numbers show signs of racial profiling, the probe could expand, he said. http://www.aclu.org/racialjustice/racialprofiling/15979prs20000622.html

August 11, 2000 — (quote) Assistant Police Chief Loses Pay Over Traffic Stop–Odenthal ‘Influenced’ Officers at Scene not to Arrest His Daughter: A top Spokane Police Department official will lose five days’ pay for intervening to prevent the arrest of his 24-year-old daughter the impoundment of the car she was driving. According to an internal investigation, Assistant Chief Al Odenthal’s actions amounted to preferential treatment and a breach of department policy. (end quote from August 24, 2000 Spokesman-Review) Odenthal was suspended for five days and lost $2000 in pay. In 2006, Odenthal was a candidate for the new police chief position and–after not getting the position–was subsequently fired.

August 6, 2001 — Tyrone Thomas, a 34-year-old African American student at Spokane Community College, was shot and killed by Spokane Police in a downtown office building. The police accused Thomas of shooting directly at them and that they shot back in self defense. However, the bullet entered Mr. Thomas’s back as he fled down a hallway and turned down a corridor. A local attorney walking through the building was able to see Thomas through a glass door but was unable to render assistance because the door was locked. The witness, not knowing that police officers shot the victim, reported seeing the injured Thomas and told the officers to get medical assistance immediately because he was still alive and was losing blood rapidly. Police officers would not allow emergency medical assistance for more than a half an hour. Even though the victim had been reported as incapacitated and severely injured, police officers claimed a need to have a SWAT team clear the area before they would allow emergency medical personnel into the building. Though the bullet did not hit any vital organs, Tyrone Thomas bled to death in the corridor. It was reported that if medical assistance had been provided immediately Mr. Thomas would more than likely have lived. Several months later, in the midst of controversy that has endured to this day, the Spokane Police Department awarded the two officers (Shane Oien and James Erickson) involved in shooting Tyrone Thomas in the back with its highest award, the Medal of Valor.

September 22, 2003 — Spokane Police officers shot and severely injured 17-year-old Lewis and Clark High School Student Sean Fitzpatrick rather than wait him out or allow his father to intervene. http://www.spokesmanreview.com/news-story.asp?date=092303&ID=s1414769

September 27, 2003 — (quote) Fifteen-year-old Couer d’Alene Tribe member Eagle Michael was shot dead by Spokane Police Officer Michelle Madsen. The Officer alleged that Eagle Michael pointed his BB gun at her. Per published reports, Eagle Michael attended the Idaho School for the Deaf & Blind and was wearing a hearing aid when he was shot. http://www.spokesmanreview.com/news-story.asp?date=092903&ID=s1417811

May 4, 2004 — Spokane Police officers investigating the assault on Iraq War protesters David Brookbank and Al Mangan told Brookbank, “You should have known something like this would happen.” The case was closed before the assigned SPD Detective Crystal Jolley interviewed the two primary witnesses of the assault. Subsequently, in a letter to U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell, the Seattle office of the FBI wrote that “Mr. Brookbank was assaulted after he assaulted the passing driver”. (see Spokesman Review article, May 6, 2004)

August 30, 2004 — Thirty-four year old Spirit Creager was tasered multiple times by a Spokane County Sheriff’s deputy. Creager had been stopped for driving with a suspended license and a non-working taillight. Deputy Chad Ruff claimed Creager resisted arrest. ( movementforchange.org/article )

November 2005 — The Washington State Patrol twice recorded a Spokane Police lieutenant doing over 100 mph on Interstate 90 in an unmarked department patrol car, both going to and returning from a training event in western Washington. To keep the State Patrol from stopping him, the Spokane Police lieutenant turned on his siren as the State Patrol approached. Rather than being charged and/or fired, the lieutenant–who had been in charge of Spokane Police traffic officers–was demoted to the rank of detective.

January 29, 2006 — A delusional Spokane County inmate, Benites Sichiro, died after being repeatedly tasered, beaten, and “donkey kicked” by jail staff. Sichiro was tied to a restraint chair prior to being taken to hospital where he died of internal injuries, including a lacerated liver. Three weeks later, jailer John Elam — who administered the donkey kick– was hired as a Spokane Police officer. Sichiro’s death was ruled a homicide by the Spokane County Coroner’s Office. On July 12, 2007, a civil rights lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court against Spokane County, the Spokane County Sheriff, and 12 jail personnel.

March 18, 2006 — Seven Spokane Police officers participated in killing a mentally disabled janitor, Otto Zehm. His death has been listed as a homicide — heart failure due to suffocation while being restrained. Zehm was tasered, beaten, hog-tied, and suffocated by seven Spokane Police officers with the assistance of paramedic personnel. http://www.spokesmanreview.com/sections/zehm/

Otto Zehm (Spokesman-Review photo)

May 24, 2006 — In April 2007, Spokane County Prosecutor Steve Tucker termed as an “excusable homicide” the death at the hands of Spokane Police Officers of Roger D. Hanks, a truck driver from Texas. http://www.spokesmanreview.com/local/story.asp?ID=183069

August 29, 2006 – Spokane Police officer Jonathon Smith resigned as a result of allegedly purchasing and consuming marijuana cookies at a concert by the band Tool at the Gorge Amphitheater in Central Washington.

November 2006 — Spokane Police Officer David Freitag was fired after housing level 3 sex offender Thomas R. Herman in the basement of his house. Freitag was also storing 10 weapons for Herman who as a convicted felon is prohibited from owning firearms. Herman was subsequently sentenced to 10 years in prison for his role in an international child pornography network.

February 26, 2007 — Spokane Police officer James “Jay” Olsen shot Navaho Indian Shonto K. Pete in the head from behind. Olsen was been charged with first-degree assault and reckless endangerment. Olsen is on unpaid leave. At the time of the shooting Olsen was off-duty and had been drinking in a Spokane bar. He was legally drunk at the time he chased Pete down and shot him from behind. http://www.badcopnews.com/category/washington/

March 24, 2007 — Spokane Police Sgt. Daniel Torok shot and killed 33-year-old Jerome Alford, an African-American, during a confrontation near downtown Spokane. The killing of Alford by the Spokane Police is being investigated by the Spokane Sheriff’s Office and is pending a decision at the Spokane County Prosecutor’s Office. http://s-r.com/tools/story_pf.asp?ID=182954

March 30, 2007 — Spokane Police Special Investigations Officer Jay Mehring was arrested while on duty and laid off for felony harassment and domestic violence for allegedly threatening to kill his wife. http://behindthebluewall.blogspot.com/2007/05/wa-detective-mehrings-terroristic.html http://www.kxly.com/news/?sect_rank=1&section_id=559&story_id=9758

May 12, 2007 — After 12 days in a coma, thirty-seven year old Trent Yohe died May 12, 2007. His death was ruled a homicide by Dr. John Howard of Spokane County medical examiner’s office. Yohe was tasered and then bound hand and foot by Spokane County Sheriff’s deputies on May 1, 2007. His death came after 12 days in a comma. No one has been charged. (Per standard procedure in Spokane County, the Spokane Police are investigating the the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office in this case. Typically, when a Spokane Police officer kills a citizen, the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office handles the investigation. Spokane County Sheriff’s Deputies also provide police coverage for the City of Spokane Valley. )

Trent Yohe, age 37, on life support equipment the day before he died

June 27, 2007 — Two Spokane citizens were arrested for acts of civil disobedience, one brutally, during the visit of U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales to Spokane. According to Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich, the meeting involved the sharing of “top secret sensitive information” with Spokane Police, FBI, ATF, and other law enforcement agencies. The meeting allegedly dealt with what some want to characterize as a “serious gang problem in Spokane”. TV coverage shows officers choking, tripping and manhandling 59-year-old Dan Treecraft. The other protester arrested was Rebecca Lamb, a middle aged woman in a wheel chair.




July 4, 2007 — Independence Day was marred by a “near police riot” in Riverfront Park. Seventeen young Spokanites were arrested in a coordinated action by a Spokane Police Tactical Unit. The police were acting to protect the private property rights of Clear Channel, Inc. which had ‘purchased’ the public park –home of Expo ‘74– for the day.

July 9, 2007 — Some one hundred fifty demonstrators of all ages and backgrounds gather to protest Spokane’s rampant police brutality and misconduct scandal. After denouncing the lack of independent oversight, impunity, and civil liberties abuses, the protesters took to the street and peacefully marched to City Hall. At City Hall, several dozen protesters waited through a 4 hour long City Council meeting to be able to make one minute presentations about Spokane Police abuses.

July 27, 2007 — Following investigation by the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office, the Spokane County Prosecutor Steve Tucker determined that the shooting of an African-American man, Jerome Alford, in a Spokane alley on March 24, 2007 by Officer Daniel Torok was a “justifiable homicide”. Torok was also involved in the beating, tasering, hog-tying and suffocation of Otto Zehm in March 2006. Both Alford and Zehm suffered from disabling conditions.

July 27, 2007 — After a botched attempt by the Spokane Police Department to taser him into submission, a suicidal man jumped to his death from Spokane’s Monroe Street Bridge mid-afternoon yesterday. Josh Levy, a 28-year old mentally ill man whose father had recently brought him to Spokane after his discharge from a western Washington mental institution, was lured from the bridge by police promises and then attacked with a taser. When one taser prod did not penetrate his flesh, Levy leapt to his death. According to Levy’s father, Spokane Police had promised him they would not use violence against his son.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

(This post is under-construction…your comments, criticisms, and contributions are welcome. Several police killings of citizens in the last couple years have yet to be added. Also missing is the Police/Fire Department evidence destruction incident.)

Posted in History of SPD Abuses, Racism, Trained to Kill | Leave a Comment »

Retired Spokane Police Don’t Go to Heaven, They Join TEAM ONE NETWORK

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 19, 2007

This is the biography of recently retired Spokane Police veteran, Skip Pavlischak, as listed on the TEAM ONE NETWORK website:

Andrew “Skip” J. Pavlischak–

Skip retired from the Spokane Police department after 27 years of service. Marine Corps Vietnam veteran, Skip has 26 years experience as a SWAT team member, team leader, and commander in a full-time position. He is a certified firearms, distraction device, and chemical agent instructor. Skip is also a Master Sub Gun and Pistol Instructor. He assisted in the formation of the Washington State Tactical Officers Association and is a past president. Skip was also the lead instructor for basic and advanced SWAT training for the Washington State Training commission and worked as a Gang Unit Leader and in the Special Investigations Narcotics Unit. He recently attended a course at New Mexico Tech for certification for instructing in Incident Response to Terrorist Bombings through the U.S. Department of Justice.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Team One Network has an interesting set of photos on its site, including a photo gallery where, not unlike the websites associated with the Spokane Police Department, virtually all the individuals involved are white (with the exception of Chinese and Afghanis they train under special U.S. government contracts).

As an aside it is interesting to look at website after website of these para-military police training organizations and look at the racial makeup of their training staffs as well as their students.

Good examples are www.10-8consulting.com and www.10-8consulting.com/photogallery

In addition, one can’t help but notice in reading the bios their dual military/police backgrounds. Get ready for more of the same as the U.S. military and mercenary armies retreat from Iraq after the colossal defeat there.

No wonder then that we see racial profiling at home and the following abroad…

Posted in No Sir Officer ____ | Leave a Comment »

Intimidation–It’s job one for Spokane Police officer

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 18, 2007


The intimidation factor that the Crimson Trace Laser provides is tremendous. Time and time again it has de-escalated lethal force encounters to controllable situations.
—Sgt. M. L. Spokane, WA Police Training Center

Posted in No Sir Officer ____ | Leave a Comment »

Training Spokane Law Enforcement in Intelligence, Military Weapons, Crowd Control, and more

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 18, 2007

Every year Spokane Police and other area law enforcement agencies receive ever more extensive, sophisticated, and deadly training.

This year local law enforcement will have training in AR-15 and M-16 assault weapons, chemical weapons, tasers, crowd control techniques, intelligence gathering and infiltration, psychological manipulation, and other topics.

Among those companies training Spokane law enforcement this year are Defense Technology Corporation of America, Armiger Police Training Institute,Force Science Research Center, FBI-LEEDA, FLETC, Lt. Colonel Dave Grossman, and John E. Reid & Associates.


Posted in Freedom to Fascism, History of SPD Abuses, In Collective Self-Defense, Independent Oversight, Know Your Rights, License to Kill, Mitchell and Jessen, Photographic Evidence, Trained to Kill, Unanswered Questions, War Abroad & At Home, Weaponry--SPD/SCSO | Leave a Comment »

Photos of All-White Spokane Police Department from Spokane Police Guild Website

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 18, 2007


Posted in All-white SPD?, Photographic Evidence, Spokane Police Guild | Leave a Comment »

Independent Oversight! Now!

Posted by Arroyoribera on July 17, 2007

The people have spoken on this one.

On the evening of March 18, 2006, a 36-year-old janitor named Otto Zehm was killed by the Spokane Police at the Zip Trip at 1712 N. Division Street. Seven police officers were involved in beating, tasering, hog-tying and finally asphyxiating Otto.

The Spokane County Coroner ruled Otto’s death a “homicide”.

As of today, 16 months later, there has been no dismissal of any officer involved in the killing. One SPD officer involved in the Zehm homicide even killed a black man in an alley a year later, yet remains on the force.

As of today, there is no oversight mechanism in place to deal with the rapidly multiplying instances of police misconduct, corruption, and brutality.

If a community has no control over its police, then they are living in a police state. Call it a police county or a police city, if you prefer.

In Spokane, Washington, we are living in a police state.

Independent oversight and federal intervention are required.

This blog will focus on bringing to light the current and past abuses of the Spokane Police Department and other local law enforcement. While much reporting exists on this, it is hoped that this will be one more source of information and one which will come up under web searches of Spokane and the Spokane Police.

I welcome you contributions to this site, your research, your commentaries, your criticism of the blog, etc.

I am interested in collaboration with this project and am looking for additional authors and investigators to help develop this blog.

Posted in Independent Oversight | Leave a Comment »