You are on page 1of 4

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Expert Witness Report and Opinion


I am a police practices expert retained to evaluate a complaint of police misconduct regarding police officers employed by the Coral Springs PD. My credentials can be viewed at Policeabuse.com. I am prepared to testify in support of the findings in this report in the event that I am called as an expert witness in state or federal court. The alleged victim filed an official complaint with Policeabuse.com alleging the following: Victims narrative Police brutality, tasters, 2 K-9 were released, whole PD on scene, 27 officers on 1 man, stomping, kicking, punching, night sticks to ribs, over excessive force, false arrest Primary reason for complaint physical assault Task: I have been asked to provide an expert witness opinion regarding the conduct of police officers during a citizen contact. My expert opinions are based on an assessment of the conduct of the officers within the context of training, accepted practices and standards for law enforcement personnel. My primary task is to provide an opinion based on what a reasonable officer would do under the circumstances described in the evidence or other materials I have examined. My assessment of the officers conduct is based on the facts provided in police reports, witness statements and evidence collected during our investigation.

Staff Assigned: Licensed Private Investigator PCC Office Staff Paralegals

Opinions of the Expert Witness After a review of the police reports, victim statements, medical records and other evidence recovered it is my opinion to a reasonable degree of professional certainty that Jules Friday was subjected to excessive force and a false arrest. My concerns about the conduct of the officers start with their judgment. Jules Friday was subjected to a police mauling by two unrestricted police dogs for as long as 10 min. according to witnesses. The horrific injury photos chronicle a misuse of police force of extraordinary dimensions. Police officers are required to restrict the use of force to situations where they are overcoming resistance or protecting the lives of citizens and officers. At the time of the dog bite attack Jules Friday had not committed a crime, was not the suspect the police were looking for, and he did nothing that would justify the overwhelming force used by the police. The police contend that Mr. Friday struck several officers, attempted to flee, and was uncooperative. However, my interviews with witnesses and the victim of this misuse of force contradict the officers written report. Furthermore, even if one accepts the officer's version of events there is no doubt that the officers use of the K-9 had a direct impact on Mr. Friday's ability to cooperate with the officers commands. According to 2 key
1400 VILLAGE SQUARE BLVD SUITE 3-161 TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA 32312 TEL 800-473-5097 FAX 866-576-9993

witnesses Mr. Friday was never given an opportunity to comply with the officer's orders. Indeed, the officer had the K-9 in close proximity to Mr. Friday and the dog was menacing Mr. Friday as he was being ordered to lie down. According to witnesses and Mr. Friday he was afraid of getting down while the dog appeared ready to bite. According to the officers report Mr. Friday refused to identify himself and walked away from officers. But three witnesses contradict the officers report. The witnesses state that Mr. Friday immediately offered his drivers license and attempted to cooperate with the officers. The Coral Springs Police Department promotes a video on the Internet describing when and how canines are used. Based on that video the CPD have not followed their own policy guidelines regarding the use of the K-9. According to the departments video canines are only used in the event of serious crimes and felonies. This event did not start off as a major crime or a felony in progress. According to the officer's own reports the police were investigating a possible case of vehicle tampering. Several juveniles were reported setting off car alarms by pulling doors on one car after another near Mr. Friday's apartment. The fact that it was being done deliberately and repeatedly indicates that the suspects knew their conduct would likely cause the alarms to go off thereby creating a disturbance. The suspects wanted to make as much noise as possible and were intentionally setting off car alarms. This is not the typical setting for someone attempting to burglarize a car. The police failed to acknowledge this distinction when they approached Mr. Friday as if he were a burglary suspect. In fact, Jules Friday had not committed any crime when he was contacted by the Coral Springs Police Department. And, there is no indication that the police recovered any evidence of an actual burglary in the area. If there was no burglary or other serious crime what were the police doing when they approached Mr. Friday as a dangerous suspect? The judgment of the officers that Friday was a threat is not supported by any evidence in their reports about the actual crime they were investigating. We do know that Mr. Friday had not burglarized a car because burglary is not what he is charged with. Nor is there any evidence that the police reported connecting him to any serious crime other than alleged resisting. Would an innocent man who has not committed a crime leave his house to start a fight with 4 officers and two dogs? According to CPD the answer is yes. This version is contradicted by witness statements. Witnesses report that Friday walked from his apartment downstairs to ask a friend for a cigarette when the police arrived. He was confronted by the police and he immediately offered his identification. The officers did not check his ID and demanded that Friday lie down. Friday hesitated because the officers dog was ready to bite. Did Jules Friday match the description of the suspect police were looking for? According to Mr. Friday and independent witnesses Mr. Friday was wearing orange shorts and a white tank top. He was later photographed shirtless after the police dogs had mauled him. The police stripped his shirt off later pulling it down to his waist according to witnesses. Fridays clothing was not in the condition it was in when he was originally contacted by the police. Nevertheless, the police took photographs of Mr. Friday at the hospital with no shirt on to support the report that he matched the suspect description of the man they were looking for. According to police reports the suspect was wearing shorts and no shirt. Even if we allow that Mr. Friday matched the description of a black male with no shirt the police have an obligation to verify his identity or conduct further investigation before turning canines loose on a suspect in this setting. The police in my opinion had time to check his ID before tasering Jules Friday three times successively. The police description of a man with no shirt could have fit anyone in the neighborhood. Before releasing the K-9 and attacking an innocent person the police should have done more to verify Mr. Friday's involvement in a crime before using force. As a retired police detective I understand the concerns any officer has walking into a dangerous situation. But Mr. Friday presented no threat to the police. He was wearing shorts and a tank top. His clothing did not obstruct the police officers view of his body and any weapons he might have had in his possession. One of the reasons the dog bite injuries appear to be so extreme is that Mr. Friday was not wearing any pants. Each bite of the police K-9 punctured flesh. This brings me to one of the most important points contradicting the police version of events. In their report Coral Springs police officers contend that Mr. Friday was assaulting police officers to evade arrest. The officers report that four officers were injured. The report is surprisingly brief and provides no information about the extent of the officers injuries. The only mention of violence by Mr. Friday is that he allegedly pushed officers away and later struck a K-9 officer in the face. The reporting officer also notes that Mr. Friday attempted to harm Duc the police dog. Friday is accused of striking Duc several times and choking him. This assessment is preposterous. Fridays injuries Given the extensive injuries and bites to Mr. Friday it is surprising that he survived the mauling by two police canines unrestricted by their handlers. Even months after the mauling his wounds ooze blood and pus. Fridays skin appears to have more than 40 puncture and tear wounds from dog bites. One witness reported that the police stood by as the dog bit in multiple times. They reported that Mr. Friday had no opportunity to surrender because well into the attack the police did not appear interested in stopping the dogs for the purpose of arresting Mr. Friday. It is my professional opinion that the release of the canines and the use of the Taser were done so without a threat of harm to the officers. Furthermore it is my belief that the officers wrote a police report that will provide them with justification for the use of force. It is my opinion that Mr. Friday was subjected to an illegal or inappropriate use of police force resulting in serious injuries and questionable criminal charges. The Coral Springs police have charged Mr. Friday with three counts of assault on a police officer and one count of resisting arrest. But there is a reasonable answer for what the officers described as resistance. Mr. Friday was jumping and flailing his arms. It is likely that he struck an officer while trying to avoid further bites to his groin, legs, hands and back. Anyone being mauled by dogs will do all the things the police described about Jules Friday without any intent to attack police officers. In closing, I would like to note that the police provided hospital staff with a false name for Mr. Friday. This conduct simply raises further questions about the officer's
1400 VILLAGE SQUARE BLVD SUITE 3-161 TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA 32312 TEL 800-473-5097 FAX 866-576-9993

credibility and motives. It is my belief this matter should be investigated by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the FBI. Materials Reviewed In preparing my report, I reviewed the following materials which are commonly examined in any area of expertise in rendering professional expert opinions on police practices. Police reports Previously Obtained Witness Statements Private Investigative Report News Articles regarding Police Abuse or misconduct in complainants community International Association of Chiefs of Police Model Policies in the following areas: General Standards of Conduct Model Policies for Arrest Search and Seizure Interviews with Citizens Other Reports or Medical Records Qualifications My qualifications are as described in my curriculum vitae available online at Policeabuse.com. To summarize, I am a former member of the Hawthorne Police Department, in the State of California, where I was at various times, a police officer, field supervisor, detective and sergeant. I was specially trained as an undercover investigator by the Los Angeles County Sheriff office. As a member of the Hawthorne Police Department, I have performed all the duties of a law enforcement officer including but not limited to street patrol, DUI enforcement and investigation, traffic, detective bureau, and robbery investigations. As a police officer I engaged in the traffic stop of motorists, investigations, arrests, handcuffing, transporting and processing of individuals. I hold an advanced certificate in Peace Officer Standards and Training. I am a qualified instructor in Police Control Restraint Techniques. I have been qualified as an expert in police practices in both federal court and California state courts, especially with regard to the use of force, report writing and officer misconduct. Prior to becoming a police officer, I had worked as a deputy in Ventura County, California. I spent a combined period of approximately nine years as a sheriff deputy and police officer. I have testified before the California State Assembly and the United States Congress on police practices. My investigative work in the field of law enforcement has resulted in changes in the law in California with regard to false police reports. As a result of my investigations the law in CA. was changed increasing the penalties for filing false police reports from a misdemeanor to a felony. Many police agencies have made policy changes as a direct result of my hidden camera test with national and local media. Others use our videotapes or portions of our training material for in-service training. I have conducted training sessions for law enforcement organizations throughout the United States, including training and seminars for police chiefs. I have provided training for the following law enforcement agencies and educational institutions: Partial list Florida Highway Patrol Los Angeles Police Department Department of Justice United States Atty.s office Los Angeles County sheriffs Broward County sheriffs Collier County sheriffs Florida State University Harvard Law school Penn State University
1400 VILLAGE SQUARE BLVD SUITE 3-161 TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA 32312 TEL 800-473-5097 FAX 866-576-9993

Florida State University Florida Department of Law Enforcement Police Executive Research Forum I am the CEO of Policeabuse.com, a national organization that investigates and documents alleged police misconduct throughout the United States. Policeabuse.com maintains the only national video database for complaints of police misconduct allegations in the United States. I have been a crime investigator for 25 years and I have conducted numerous investigations in that capacity. I have more than 500 investigations of police misconduct in my experience. I have published editorials in the New York Times and Los Angeles Times. As an investigative journalist my stories have received acknowledgements; thus far four Emmy awards and four Edward R. Murrow awards for investigative journalism. My organization has conducted numerous undercover investigations documenting racial profiling and other misconduct by various law enforcement organizations throughout the United States. Our videos are used by police departments and the DOJ for training. Education I earned a bachelors degree from California Lutheran University and Masters Degree in criminal justice from Penn State University. I have served as an Adjunct Professor of Criminal Justice at Florida A&M University and Florida State University. Cases I have been retained as an expert in past 5 years: Lateef Al-Saraji and Theresa Al-Saraji V. City of Dallas, Police Carney V. City of Raynham Feliciano V. Suffolk County Folino V. City of Niagara Falls Additional Evidence: Expert's Fee for Services My fees for expert witness services in this case include the following: Expert review $600 Expert Report $7500 Diop Kamau, CEO

Diop Kamau
Policeabuse.com

1400 VILLAGE SQUARE BLVD SUITE 3-161 TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA 32312 TEL 800-473-5097 FAX 866-576-9993