Tag Archives: bodycams

Update: Sheriff Israel Ordered Broward County Deputies to Wait Outside; Delayed Medical Response

Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel ordered deputies not to enter school during Parkland FL. mass shooting

Sources have now revealed that Sheriff Scott Israel ordered Broward County deputies not to enter the school during the Parkland shooting and delayed access for medical response.

Last week, I posted about the revelation that Deputy Scot Peterson, the school cop assigned to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, had stood around outside during the Parkland mass shooting. Rather than enter the school and attempt to help the children being murdered, Peterson hid behind a car in the parking lot.

In the days since then, that story has continued to grow and change and not in a positive way. As a matter of fact, just hours later leaks from the Coral Springs Police Department exposed that Peterson was not the only deputy who failed to enter the school and try to stop Nikolas Cruz. Three other (as yet unnamed) BCSO deputies also took cover outside as they listened to the sound of kids being killed.

In the latest revelation, it appears that those deputies were actually ordered not to enter the school. On February 27th, it was reported that sources “near the Broward County Sheriff’s Office” had indicated that the deputies were told not to enter the school without body cameras on. None of those deputies had body cams and therefore they did not go inside the building.

What sort of misguided reasoning was behind insisting they not enter the building without body cameras recording is not clear. Nor is the reason why they would have adhered to that even after it was determined that none of the cops present had a body cam. It is, however, very clear at this point that none of the four Broward County Sheriff’s Deputies so much as attempted to confront the shooter until after officers from the Coral Springs Police Department arrived.

Note: If you have videos, stories, upcoming events/protests, or personal interactions with the police (and/or “justice” system) that you would like to share, send them to us and we will do everything we can to bring it to the attention of the world. In addition, you can visit the Nevada Cop Block resources section for information and links to the rights of citizens when dealing with police, during which you should always be filming.

Sheriff Israel was already facing heavy criticism for Deputy Peterson’s lack of action. Shortly after it was made known that other deputies had also hid outside during the shooting, demands for his resignation began. This new information that those deputies were under orders not to enter the school could very well be the final straw.

Israel will have a hard time trying to convince anyone that the deputies’ behavior was “not my responsibility” That’s a pretty hard sell when that behavior was actually based upon orders issued by him. It’s no longer one cowardly officer shirking his responsibility, it’s a department policy at that point.

And it doesn’t just end at ordering the deputies themselves to wait. Another leaked story indicates that the Broward County Sheriff’s Deputies at the scene prevented EMS workers and other medical professionals from approaching the school in order to treat the injured. There is now speculation that some of those who were killed could have survived if they had received that medical treatment sooner.

It’s very much true that general procedure for the police is not to allow fire/medical personnel to enter until a scene has been cleared. However, even that doesn’t belie all of the criticism of Sheriff Israel. One still has to ask just how long medical treatment was delayed because those deputies (under the sheriff’s orders) failed to enter the school and clear it when they arrived.

For how long did the paramedics stand outside offering to risk their own lives in order to treat the children while Nikolas Cruz was already on his way to hangout inside a Walmart? And how many more children would have survived if those deputies had gone in and secured that school?


Sheriff Israel: Behavior of Deputies “Not My Responsibility”

In last week’s press conference, in which Sheriff Israel put on a show of being outraged by Deputy Peterson’s inaction, two things stood out as odd almost immediately. One was the way Israel went out of his way to declare that the security footage which exposed Peterson would likely “never be released to the public.” Another was that there were no recording of the radio communications available for that day.

The first mystery was likely solved by the revelation that not just one, but four armed deputies would have been seen heroically defending the parking lot on that video as defenseless children were shot. The reason for the “malfunctioning” radio connection may be because Sheriff Israel didn’t want people hearing that he had ordered them to do so.

Broward County Sheriff’s Office Press Conference

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Update: First of Two Louisiana Cops Charged in Murder of Six Year Old Jeremy Mardis Sentenced to 40 Years

Marksville, LA. Police Officer Derrick Stafford was sentenced earlier today to 40 years in prison for the November 2015 murder of six year old Jeremy Mardis. Last week Stafford was convicted of manslaughter and attempted manslaughter for the shooting of Mardis and his father, Christopher Few, who was badly wounded but survived. (See below for videos of the actual shooting.) Technically, Stafford was sentenced to 55 years, but the fifteen years he received for attempting to kill Few will run concurrent to the 40 year sentence.

As has been reported several times already on the CopBlock Network (primarily by Brian Sumner and also by me personally), Mardis was killed by Stafford and Norris Greenhouse Jr. after a short car chase. Stafford and Greenhouse, who were working as Deputy Marksville City Marshals at the time, claimed that they had to defend themselves after Christopher Few had backed into Greenhouse’s vehicle.

However, body camera video showed that not only had Few, who was unarmed, stopped prior to the shooting, but that he had also raised his arms outside the window of his SUV. Other officers at the scene, including Marksville Police Lt. Kenneth Parnell, whose body camera recorded the video, did not fire their weapons and also testified that they did not do so because they did not “fear for their lives.” That “extremely disturbing” footage was later cited by Colonel Mike Edmonson of the Louisiana State Police as one of the reasons why charges were filed against Greenhouse and Stafford.

After the shooting it was revealed that Few and Greenhouse were involved in a “love triangle” involving Few’s fiancee, Megan Dixon. Prior to the shooting there had reportedly been several prior confrontations between the two. Also, just prior to the beginning of the chase that culminated in the shooting, Few had been arguing with Dixon and attempting to convince her to come home with him.

Stafford and Greenhouse were both moonlighting as Deputy Marksville City Marshals at the time. In addition to that, Stafford worked full time as a Lieutenant with the Marksville Police Department. Greenhouse, whose trial will begin later this year, previously resigned from the Marksville PD and was working full time as an Alexandria City Marshal.

Full Body Camera Video

Lawyer Says Portsmouth Police Shooting Video Has 15 Second Gap

On Wednesday, the lawyer representing the family of William Chapman II, an unarmed man who was shot by Portsmouth police Officer Stephen D. Rankin in April, claimed that the video recorded by Rankin’s taser contains a 15 second gap. Coincidentally, those “missing” 15 seconds just happen to be during the time that Chapman was killed.

Via the Virginia Pilot:

“The video was operational up until just before the shooting, and then it was not operational for about 15 seconds,” [Attorney Jon] Babineau said, recounting what he was told.

He said the video was initially recorded while Rankin was holding the weapon. When it cuts back on, the Taser is apparently on the ground of the Wal-Mart parking lot.

Stephen D. Rankin

Stephen D. Rankin

While Babineau (and his source) state that they don’t believe it was intentionally erased, but was rather just a malfunction of the camera, the numerous instances of “lost” footage, as well as the timing of that unfortunate malfunction raises obvious questions. It’s rather amazing that so many police cameras seem to have power source issues during the time that those police officers are beating or shooting someone.

Similarly, even private businesses seemed to be susceptible to “malfunctions” at the most inopportune of times. One of the best examples was when the one camera that would have shown Erik Scott being murdered by Las Vegas Police from the LVMPD at a Costco in Summerlin somehow malfunctioned and failed to record during that time.

A more recent example would be when the Chicago Burger King near where Laquan McDonald was murdered by Officer Jason Van Dyke somehow ended up not saving 80 minutes of footage that night. Of course, by shear coincidence those 80 minutes just happened to be during the time McDonald was being shot. Also, by some random coincidence, that footage deleted itself right after a Chicago Police officer came into the Burger King to review their surveillance video.

Obviously, this and all the footage that the cops constantly refuse to release until years later when a court forces them to, if at all, should serve as a reminder to always film the police. Even when they have dashcams, bodycams, and/or tasercams, we can’t count on that equipment not to malfunction, inadvertently erase the video, or simply disappear.

Update: “Disturbing” Bodycam Footage Led To Murder Charges in Jeremy Mardis Shooting

Although it hasn’t been released yet and probably won’t be anytime soon, Colonel Mike Edmonson of the Louisiana State Police stated that “extremely disturbing” video footage captured by a bodycam worn by one of the officers involved played a large part in why the charges were brought against two of the four officers present at the time that six year old Jeremy Mardis was murdered by Louisiana marshals. Other shocking details about the marshal department itself and those officers has also emerged since the shooting.

According to TheAtlantic.com:

All of it was filmed. The police chase of an SUV after dark on a weeknight. The shots fired. The driver, struck in the head. His son, 6 years old, shot dead in the front seat.

The fatal shooting of Jeremy Mardis in Marksville, Louisiana, on Tuesday was captured on a body camera worn by one of the four police officers present at the scene. And it was that video footage that led in part to the decision to charge two of them with second-degree murder on Friday night.

The footage, Colonel Mike Edmonson of the Louisiana State Police told reporters, was “extremely disturbing, and it is partly why we’re here tonight with these charges.”

“I’m not gonna talk about it, but I’m gonna tell you this,” Edmonson said. “It is the most disturbing thing I’ve seen and I will leave it at that.”

Greenhouse Stafford Lousiana Marshals ArrestedAs previously reported here on CopBlock.org, Officer Norris Greenhouse Jr. and Lt. Derrick Stafford (who previously was indicted on two counts of aggravated rape) were arrested late last night (Nov. 6th) on charges of second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder. Jeremy Mardis died at the scene, while his father, Chris Few remains hospitalized with life threatening injuries.

Initially police claimed that Few had fled after the officers tried to arrest him on an outstanding warrant. In addition, the earliest reports claimed he had a gun and then later that he had backed his car into a police car. All of those initial reports have since been refuted by Louisiana State Police, who made the arrests of Greenhouse and Stafford.

Six Year old Shot Lousiana PoliceIt’s also been reported that all four officers refused to cooperate with state police investigators after the shooting or even state why they were chasing him. According to the Daily Mail, three of the four officers were working for a “maverick” marshal agency, which is run by a local school bus driver who lacks basic law enforcement certification and “has recently begun overstepping his authority.”

Bill Scott Testimony in Support of NV Bodycam Bill: “My Son Erik Might Be Alive Today…” (Video)

“My eldest son, Erik Scott, might be alive today if Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department officers had been required to wear body cameras in the summer of 2010, when Erik was shot to death.”

– William B. Scott

On March 31, 2015, the Nevada State Assembly’s Government Affairs Committee held a hearing on Nevada State Assembly Bill AB403, which would require all Nevada police to wear body cameras. Testimony was given by various witnesses, both for and against, the proposed bill. Among those speaking in support of mandating bodycams was Bill Scott, whose son Erik Scott was gunned down by three members of the LVMPD outside a Summerlin, NV Costco, back in 2010.

Body CameraOne of the most contentious issues relating to that day has always been the lack of a video showing what exactly happened. Further, the incredibly dubious claim that the one camera which would have provided that video was malfunctioning at the time, has done nothing but create questions and inspire doubt. Although that controversy itself, along with the already mounting examples of body worn or dash mounted cameras similarly “malfunctioning” or simply being shut off by cops, shows why bodycams and dashcams aren’t the end all-solution to police abuses, they certainly could go a long way toward curtailing them, as Bill rightly states in his testimony. This would be especially true, if they were accompanied with real consequences for police officers that tamper with or turn off those cameras.

As has been demonstrated many times, knowing they are on camera and that there will be evidence of their crimes has often worked very effectively as a deterrent to police abuses. Even when cops aren’t wise enough to stay on good behavior because they know they are being filmed, cameras have often yielded the proof necessary to hold them accountable for their actions. Access and control of that evidence is still a huge issue that necessitates that we should still carry our own cameras and film the police every time we or someone else is stopped by the police, however having another camera recording all the time is obviously a step in the right direction.

Interestingly, the almost singular excuse used to oppose bodycams by those speaking against them (which consisted almost exclusively of police employees) was the expense involved in buying them and storing the footage. That’s actually kind of understandable, since the cops obviously don’t want to just come right out and say they don’t want anybody to see all the bad shit they do all day or especially not to have irrefutable evidence, when those things cross the line into prosecutable acts. The problem with that line of reasoning is that all of the many lawsuits being paid out for the bad conduct of police would more than easily pay for the added expense associated with requiring body cameras.

CBN-network-bannerIn Las Vegas, the citizens eventually paid about $2,000,000 total for the settlements to the family of Stanley Gibson, after he was murdered by Jesus Arevalo (who is also receiving between $23,000 and $28,000 every year from those taxpayers, as a de facto reward for that murder). That alone would put a huge dent in the cost required to outfit cops within the LVMPD with bodycams. So, the deterrence for murders by Nevada police that wearing bodycams would represent, would more than likely actually save money by eliminating the need to constantly pay those settlements to the families of their victims, as well as the associated increases in the premiums (from $1.3 million in 2012 to $6.9 in 2013 at the LVMPD) for the liability insurance that Nevada police departments have against such settlements.

Bill opens his half-hour long testimony (video embedded below) with these statements:

My eldest son, Erik Scott, might be alive today, if Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Dept. officers had been required to wear body cameras in the summer of 2010, when Erik was shot to death. Why? Because body-worn cameras are a powerful deterrent to the use of deadly force. They literally are “unimpeachable  witnesses.”


Officer William Mosher—who panicked and shot my son as Erik and his girlfriend calmly walked out of Costco-Summerlin—had already killed one man, in his first five years on the Las Vegas Metro force. That shooting was ruled “justified.” With no video evidence or civilian witnesses, inquest jurors had no alternative but to accept the accounts of on-scene police officers, even though they were highly suspect.


If he’d been wearing a bodycam on July 10, 2010, Mosher might not have fired at Erik. Having narrowly escaped criminal charges before, Mosher might have asked himself—as he hovered near the door of Costco, shaking like the proverbial leaf, according to witnesses:  “If I shoot and kill again, will I be fired? Will criminal charges be filed against me?” With his and dozens of other cops’ body cameras documenting every move, there would be no escaping the truth this time.


Body cameras on Mosher, Thomas Mendiola and Joshua Stark (the three shooters, who fired seven rounds into Erik, including five in his back) might have motivated the officers to opt for a much different, life-saving tactic: Follow Erik into the parking lot, de-escalate the situation by calmly talking to him, and check his legal concealed-carry permit. Everybody would have gone home safely…and Erik Scott would be alive and well today.

A full transcript of his entire testimony can be found at his website: williambscott.com

Bill’s book “the Permit,” a fictionalized account of Erik Scott’s murder, can be purchased via his personal website.

A related article Bill recently wrote for Politico.com about bodycams and how they may have affected not just Erik’s encounter with the LVMPD, but also how they potentially would have kept Michael Slager from murdering Walter Scott in North Charleston, South Carolina can be read here.

The unedited video of the full Nevada State Assembly’s Government Affairs Committee hearing on Nevada State Assembly Bill AB403 can be viewed here.

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