Friday, February 6, 2015

BREAKING NEWS! NEW LPD SCANDALS EXPOSED: Cops Keep Jobs After Recklessly Firing Weapons While Drinking Alcohol, Driving Vehicles in Excess of 125 MPH While Off-Duty; Appreciative of Not Getting a Ticket!


Tim VanderPlaats
Secret documents were released on Friday related to a lawsuit filed by Lafayette resident, Tim VanderPlaats against the Lafayette Police Department, the City of Lafayette, and  LPD officers, Charles Williams, Jr., and Michael Barthelemy.  As reported earlier, VanderPlaats received threatening messages from LPD officers after hugging one of the officer's girlfriend.  A week later VanderPlaats was beaten unconscious as he was arriving home.


According to court records, three of the officers admitted to placing calls to VanderPlaat's phone.  One of the recorded messages was noted in a Motion for Summary Judgment filed on behalf of the City of Lafayette.  Apparently, the City is seeking to be dismissed as a defendant from the lawsuit, citing immunity protections as a government entity as well as stating the officers were not acting in their official capacities as officers when they made threats against VanderPlaats.


Officers Charles Williams, Jr., Michael Barthelemy, and Nathan LaMar testified that they placed calls to VanderPlaats from a local restaurant.


One of the messages was entered as evidence in the Motion. 

"Hi, Tim.  This is Bobby.  I just wanted to tell you that you're a huge fuckin' douche bag, and I swear to God if I hear your name again I'm going to fucking kill you.  And it's not gonna be awesome, I mean it's gonna be like, little body parts in a fireplace kind of death, and that's really gonna suck.  So -- I would just kinda crawl into a hole today [inaudible] for awhile, or --[inaudible].  Thanks."
In addition to evidence related directly to the case, disciplinary documents against officers involved in the VanderPlaats scandal were also entered into public evidence, including an incident involving "the consumption of alcoholic beverages and firing of weapons" that reportedly took place in early 2009 involving several LPD officers as well as an LPD dispatcher.  Officers Nathan LaMar, Charlie A Williams, Jr., Ronald Dombkowski, and Dispatcher Mark Grimes were written up in a confidential LPD case report dated 8/28/2009.  

The detailed report also revealed that Tippecanoe County Sheriff Deputy Drew Heath, son of former Tippecanoe County Sheriff Dave Heath, was also involved in the incident. 

At the direction of Captain Steve Hartman of the LPD, Lt. Chris Downard was directed to open an investigation of misconduct into the incident. 

LPD Officer Charles Williams, Jr.
According to the report, Officer Charlie Williams, Jr. admitted that he was with several friends, some from the LPD, at Purdue Police Officer Andy Standifer's home in rural Warren County.  Williams told the investigator that that he, Ron Dombkowski, Officer LaMar, and Deputy Heath from TCPD were at the gathering. 

"[Williams] said there were some alcoholic beverages consumed, but he did not feel he was intoxicated," the report stated.  "He stated that when the group was mainly outside the home (he could not specifically recall who was still inside) he used his off duty handgun to fire a round into the air.  He described pointing the weapon toward an empty field, away from persons."

Officer Nathan Lamar reportedly stated that he, Williams, Dombkowski, Drew Heath, Katie Williams, and Mark Grimes had ridden together to Standifer's with Ron Dombkowski, "as Dombkowski was not drinking that night and was a designated driver."

"[LaMar] said that when they were leaving Standifer's, exiting the house, Williams was standing next to Dombkowski's personal vehicle, and he fired two rounds into the ground next to Williams.  Lamar said he never felt anyone was endangered by the shots Williams fired.  He said they all entered Dombkowski's vehicle, and Drew Heath fired a shot out the window toward the ground at an adjacent cornfield.  Lamar said that he also fired a round from his personally owned handgun out the window of the vehicle toward the ground alongside the road, and that Mark Grimes then fired his weapon out the window.  LeMar said at this time Dombkowski stopped the vehicle and angrily confronted them, telling them to 'knock it off'.  LeMar was certain that Dombkowski did not fire a gun, due to his driving the vehicle and being upset by their behavior.  LeMar said he had consumed alcoholic beverages prior to the incident, but did not consider himself 'intoxicated.'  LeMar described his actions as 'stupid' and said he had not engaged in any behavior like that since that night."

[Dombkowski] gave a similar account to that of LaMar according to the report.  He stated that Heath, LeMar, Charlie Williams, Katie Williams, and Mark Grimes were in the vehicle with him.  Dombkowski stated that "Charlie Williams, LaMar, Heath, and Grimes fired their handguns out the windows of the windows of the vehicles while they were on an unpopulated stretch of the road.  He did not believe they were endangering anyone, but wanted them to stop their actions, and he recounted stopping his vehicle in the roadway and yelling at them to stop."

[Grimes], the LPD dispatcher confirmed the events to the investigator; however, it was noted that Grimes was confronted by Captain Hartman for not disclosing the incident during his initial interview.

The Officers were found to be in violation of Lafayette Police Department Policy 05-22, Off-Duty Weapons, which requires:

"Off Duty weapons will be used in accordance with any appropriate Department Policy Statement and any other appropriate rule, regulation policy directive or order as issued.

The firing of their off-duty weapons in this incident could not be construed as target practice, hunting, ballistic examination or of the destruction of an animal or within the discharge of their duties as officers.  (Policy 05-19) They did not report discharging weapons outside those conditions as required by that policy.  Furthermore, firing the weapons from a moving vehicle after consumption of alcoholic beverages amplifies the irresponsibility of their actions.

Dispatcher Grimes' actions are not judged by the sworn officers' rules and regulations, but his behavior could have brought the city into disrepute; therefore, his conduct was unbecoming as a city employee and against City of Lafayette Policy.  Further, he did not comply with a lawful request of superior to answer questions truthfully during his internal review process, again violating city rules."

Officer Ron Dombkowski failed to report behavior of fellow members of the department that were violations of rules and regulations," continued the report filed by Lt. Chris Downard.

Surprisingly, the only action taken against the LPD officers were letters to their employment files.


LPD OFFICERS CLOCKED IN EXCESS OF 125 MPH IN PERSONAL VEHICLES BY ISP; NO CHARGES FILED


How many citizens would get a free pass after being clocked driving in excess of 120 mph on I-65?  Apparently, the law doesn't apply to four LPD officers who were stopped by ISP Major Thomas Melville on May 12, 2009 after they were driving at high rates of speed on I-65.


A letter describing the incident and follow-up reprimand were released as part of the aforementioned lawsuit filed against the City of Lafayette by Tim VanderPlaats.


According to a letter, dated May 12, 2009 and addressed to former LPD Chief Don Roush, Major Melville gave the following account:



"I was on my way home from Active Shooting Training at the State Office Building.  I was northbound on I-65 approaching the ramp from I-465.  I noticed two vehicles enter I-65 from the I-465 ramp at a high rate of speed.  I was sure I had two very high speeds with these vehicles.  I thought they were drag racing but could not be sure yet because I was still about 1/2 mile behind the vehicles.  I accelerated and was not catching up with the vehicles.  I found a sign where I could begin a VASCAR clock on the front vehicle, a 2006 Black Dodge Charger.  The second vehicle, a 1996 black Chevrolet Impala SS, I would estimate was at a speed in excess of 120MPH before he let off the accelerator.  I passed the second vehicle near 71st St. and found a change in the color of the pavement north of 71st St. to stop the VASCAR clock on the first vehicle.  When I ran through the VASCAR zone I received a clock on the first vehicle at 112.7MPH.  Vehicle 1 had hit the brakes and slowed down before I could get a location to shut the VASCAR off so I would estimate the speed of this vehicle in excess of 125MPH.



I activated my red/blue lights and the Dodge Charger pulled right over.  I waved over the Chevrolet Impala but the vehicle did not stop.



I told the driver of the Dodge Charger to show me his hands.  The driver stated they were police officers.  I asked how many were in the car with him and he stated one other police officer.  I was at a position where I could not see the passenger at the time.  I had my weapon pulled, in the ready position and instructed the driver the shut the vehicle off then throw the keys out of the vehicle.  I then instructed him to exit the vehicle and slowly produce his identification.  The driver did so without question.  I then instructed the passenger to exit the vehicle and then slowly produce his identification.  He did so.  I then holstered my weapon.



An IMPD Officer and ISP Sgt. Rick Cool arrived for backup.



At this time the second vehicle had returned to our location and both the driver and passenger provided police identification from the Lafayette City Police Department.  The four Lafayette City Police Officers were identified as:



[Charles A. Williams, Nathan LaMar, Charles Eric Wallace, and Ronald L. Dombkowski]


All four officers fully cooperated with my demands and did not give me the first problem.  Both drivers were very apologetic and appreciate of not getting a ticket.  Officer was embarrassed to the point his face was beet red.  I told both drivers and passengers that I would be providing a report to Chief Roush with all this information.

I will be the first officer to say that as a police officer have taken advantage of my position from time to time and exceed the posted speed limit.  However, the seriously high speeds of these vehicles provided an unsafe condition for the other four vehicles that the Dodge Charger passed during this incident and the one vehicle that the Impala passed.

I am confident you will handle this incident internally in a manner that will best suit these two drivers and the City of Lafayette.  If you have any questions you may call me at 317-431-1292."

The letter was respectfully submitted by Thomas E. Melville, Major, Indiana State Police.

Again, the only punishment for the errant officers was a mere letter in their files.

What is it going to take for these out-of-control officers to face real consequences, you know, the kind that real people would face had they committed these crimes?  This just isn't going to fly with the public.  The same names keep popping up every time there is illegal and dangerous behavior among the ranks. 

How can citizens have confidence in the police department as long as these double standards exist? 

Private citizens have recently been arrested for making death threats, and had a citizen been clocked in excess of 125MPH, it would not have been overlooked.

If the LPD is ever to re-gain the trust of the community, its leadership must remove repeat offenders from the ranks.

Other disciplinary reports were released via court records for Williams, which will be reported on separately.




88 comments:

  1. think I have submitted comments before about lamar, barthelemy and dombkowski these officers have continuously harassed a member of my household as well, 18 yr old male was pulled over 13 times in a 3 month span by these officiers , lawsuit is in the process

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  2. Don't commit crimes and you won't be harassed.

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    1. i have both witnessed and experienced police harassment. so, it is possible to be harassed when not committing any crimes. every police force of any real sixe has certain officers who abuse their authority.

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    2. They told that to Jesus, and then they killed him.
      Gotta love Copsucker apologists.

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    3. Since when is hugging a cop's gf a crime worthy of harassment? Sounds like immature thugs hiding behind a badge, pretending to protect their community.

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    4. That statement is a bald-faced lie

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    5. LMFAO! ROFLMFAO! WTF! You are an idiot on Pluto! Don't commit crimes and you won't get arrested? Still LMFAO!

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  3. I nearly spat out my coffee when I read that the officers were relieved about not getting a ticket. Excess of 125 MPH and relieved about not getting a ticket? That is enough of a high speed to have your car impounded, you get tackled and arrested, and massive fines levied on your person. That is, unless you have the blue shield protecting your ass. Truly shows you how police departments, especially those in Indiana, dole out internal wrist slapping style punishments for things that a private citizen would get the book thrown at them for. No wonder people are losing faith in police all across the Midwest. These police officers are a god damn disgrace.

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  4. Funny my comment wasn't approved but those who write in your favor are.

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    Replies
    1. So which one of these idiot cops are you.

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  5. dombkowski was just at my house a couple nights ago glad i didn't get too lippy who knows what would have happened to me

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  6. im glad someone is finally doing somethingabout these creeps!!!!!!! :-):-):-):-) thank you jesus for answeringmy prayers!!!!

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  7. They ac t just like a gang. Why do they think they are above the law and arrest citizens for lesser crimes than they have openly admitted to. Why should they enjoy the upside of a double standard? The jail time they should get just may be the thing these dangers to society need. You kno . For rehabilitation. Good luck finding a job you flock of hipocrit .

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  8. Sorry, but many of the comments did not pass approval, because they were over the top. Please avoid profanity. Also, comments referring to police as "pigs," etc... will not be approved. There are many good police officers out there, and they deserve our respect.

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  9. I understand that many are upset at the blatant double standards, but this is not a police-hating site. Our goal is to promote change, not hate.

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    1. I totally agree with you. however, I am a perfect subject for police doing what they do considering who is in office.

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  10. the negative comments about my 18 yr old son committing crimes is unfair, he is not a thug that has been in trouble, yeah he did get mouthy and lamar and him do bump heads because lamar does think that he is above the law and can bully anyone and get away with it, and has, we have videos of every stop to prove the harassment , these bullys with a badge do not scare or intimidate everyone and are gonna pay for the embarrassment they have caused

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    1. Give us your contact information. We would be interested in viewing the videos.

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    2. is there a way to pm you my contact info

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    3. Can you email me at annafriend1955@gmail.com or go to our Facebook page and pm me.

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  11. pathetic absolutely pathetic that these officers are beyond the law and can get away with anything they dish out, I think the ones in control should have consequence's also

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  12. Isn't there a young kid sitting in jail for threatening to kill a cop or a judge? Either let the kid go or put these lawbreaking cops in the jail cell with him. Now.

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  13. Maybe it's time for citizen's review. What do you say Mr. Mayor? Will you take the lead on this issue? There are a number of upstanding citizens you could select to lead a committee.

    I believe it's time for transparency from city government. Surely one can see the importance of this. If city government is doing nothing wrong then there is nothing to object to.

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    1. I think it time for federal officers to check in on this,fireing guns from moveing cars is not right.

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    2. the DNR needs to check on this,fireing weapons from moving cars in the county, not right

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    3. my dad always told me that bullet is comeing down somewhere?

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  14. So while people are getting their cars impounded, licenses suspended and insurance cancelled these cops get a free pass? The police chief is as guilty as these clowns for not having them arrested and held to the same standard the rest of us would get.

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  15. Citizens need to set up their own sting operation. Since we seem to have a problem with drunk cops shooting guns and beating people up, good people need to put their Gomer Pyle hats on and sit outside the cop saloon (a.k.a. FOP bar) and catch the drunks driving off in their cruisers. We know the real cops won't arrest them for driving drunk and shooting their weapons into space. Those cops could have killed someone!!! What if a person were standing nearby when they were shooting into fields in the dark?!!!! Oh, actually there WAS someone standing by, wasn't there? There was a concerned citizen who called the cops on these lawbreakers after private property was destroyed by all the stray bullets!! Can someone tell me what the charges would have been if it had been a private citizen who was caught for doing that? Who swept this all under the rug? COVER-UPers should be treated the same way Richard Nixon was.

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  16. Citizens arrest! Citizens arrest!

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  17. Everyone call the prosecutor and ask him to file charges. We need to bypass the police. There's already been an admission of guilt via court records.

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    Replies
    1. the prosecutor,and old tony are not going to do anything,they hope its go under the rug.

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  18. Just received information from a reliable source that "Cassie Campbell" who is posting comments on JC Online Facebook page is actually an LPD cop who is trolling the sites trying to discredit the messengers who are bringing this story to the citizens.

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    1. what we say as citizens is being filtered

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  19. Maybe it's time for citizen's review. What do you say Mr. Mayor? Will you take the lead on this issue? There are a number of upstanding citizens you could select to lead a committee.

    I believe it's time for transparency from city government. Surely one can see the importance of this. If city government is doing nothing wrong then there is nothing to object to.

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  20. Maybe Roswarski's opponent can use this as a campaign issue. Or better yet, maybe a viable candidate can step up to the plate and run with this issue, if only for the purpose of bringing about much-needed change.

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  21. Someone needs to point black ask Tony-O: Did you know about these issues and allow the officers to remain unpunished by the same laws other citizens are prosecuted with? Ask it now. Watch his face to red.

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    1. what about it mayor,check on it please.

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    2. mr mayor. did you check on this.thank you.

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  22. A citizens review? Are you kidding. If Tony-O did that his secret deeds would be uncovered too.

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  23. Can you people find out if Drew Heath received any type of disciplinary action over this? I know it's a dumb question considering who his father is an all, but was just hoping the TCPD at least had a little higher standards, so I wouldn't have to lose respect for both departments.

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    Replies
    1. maybe the new sheriff will take a look at this? we hope so.

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  24. Ok, I will try posting my comment and leave out expletives, but seriously this calls for at least a WTH! Can we say WTH? We will see. Seriously, I just lost respect for the ISP officer who let these immature cops get away with drive in excess of 125mph and endangering all of our lives! When is someone going to hold these buffoons accountable? I can't believe the City has the kahunas to say they bear no responsibility. Heck, they created these monsters by allowing them to get away with all their misdeeds. They even took it a step further and covered it all up. The only reason it's out now is because someone got beat up and decided to stand up to the bullies and sue their rearends.

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  25. You know it is just "we want to save face with the public" I know of a situation 100 time worst than this involving the tippecanoe County sheriff's debt. A sheriff in the department was having sex with his daughters best friend.. At 15 or 16 years of age. I see our teacher in the news with criminal charges for this act of child rape being prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. This sheriff admitted to doing it and the victim verified this had taken place. The sheriff's department asked for this mans 37 at the time.. Resignation that is all he got... No criminal charges.. No sex offender.. Nothing... This is just the beginning... Good job officers.. Rape our kids.. Threaten our public.. Beat up innocent people... You watch they will be asked to simply resign and go get a job in another community.. Charge them let them walk with the stigma of criminal... Charge them

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  26. Give me a break! So these police got a little out of hand having fun, no one was hurt 6-7 years ago. The only reason it is being passed out to public is the city needs to cover their butt, and really only because some rich kid wants to make a point. Affluent people will continue to push us all down and maybe people need to stand behind the weaker ones in this situation!!!

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    1. The double standard is the issue here. Our police should be above reproach. Not because they are entitled, but because that is what we as citizens should expect. We expect them to abide by the same laws as the rest of society.

      People, nothing will change unless we get off our butts and be the catalyst for that change. Sounding off on this blog is a good start, but most of us will go back to life as usual tomorrow and forget all about this because we think it doesn't affect us directly, but it does. Injustice damages us all. It damages our faith in leadership and authority. It makes us distrust the system and the processes. It creates an us against them cloud that becomes impossible for all of us to come out from under.

      I challenge all of you to do more than complain. Get involved. Become part of the process for positive change. One person can have a hard time making a difference, but all of us moving in the same direction creates an unstoppable wave.

      "The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it." - Albert Einstein

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    2. does everyone understand that LPD and others monitor what we are saying. they decide who we respond to

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    3. COP!!!!!!!!!!!

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  27. Lamar is a blight on humanity as are the others. He has been harassing my daughter for months. One night he had a noise complaint for another address but because it was close to her he looked up her cell number and called her at 2:30 am!

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  28. Since when have cops been the weaker ones? Sorry but I think you are a cop or related to one! I know people who have been harassed by some of these crooked cops and they are not rich by any means! Mayor Rossi used to be a cop. Does he approve the free crimes committed by these crony cops?

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  29. Because of the bad apples this is how your public views your police agency Mr. MAYOR!

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  30. As a former Patrol Sgt., for the West Lafayette PD, when letters going into an officers file
    will not stop the bad conduct of an officer. Then it is time for the Mayor or the Chief of Police to take stonger action.

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    1. its time for a federal judge to get in on this.playing and shooting guns from moving cars ,these cops know that bullet may go somewhere?

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  31. My son called police to report that he was threatened with a gun. Two officers showed up and thought my son looked "high" so they decided to not go to the persons house that threatened my son with a gun. They did not make a police report at all. So my 18 year old son and I threw them out of house and slammed the door behind them. We have had a few incidents like that. It is so ridiculous. The police obviously did not care that a teenager was going around Lafayette pointing a loaded gun at people.

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    1. Lafayette nor Tippecanoe county police care. There goal is to get anyone into their in-house system so they can get money.

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  32. they will not do anything because it is all about money.if they admit guilt they would lose the many lawsuits

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    1. I so agree with you 100 %

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  33. The more info that it is released on these police offers, the better it looks for Tim's case. The night Tim was assaulted and beaten unconscious, 3-911 call were either ignored or dropped. Now that we've learned LPD dispatcher, Mark Grimes is a buddy of these officers and also likes to shoot guns aimulusly, I would really like to know if Mark Grimes was working the night of Tim's assault. If Mr. Grimes was working that night, it looks really, really bad for LPD and the officers involved. Hopefully someone is looking into that.

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    1. I hope tim wins his case. I want to be on that jury.

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  34. All of Tippecanoe Co. Judicial system SUCKS. The cops, the lawyers, and the judges. It is all about money for the county. WAKE UP TIPPICANOE, Our system will allow a child molester to have more freedom then conspiracy to comment theft. what I'm saying is that a female was prosecuted for five years of in-house arrest for driving a car. She had a fricken gun to her head. But our city does not give a shit. She didn't steal anything. The person committing the crime is behind bars. THANK GOD. but an innocent person who feared for their life is serving 5 years of in-house arrest. Our county is getting $70.00 a week for her to be on this program. The person responsible for the crime is sitting pretty in state prison.. He eats better then his "so called conspiracy. Once again, Our County of Tippecanoe thrives on the Little People. It is all about MONEY. Our system needs to recognize that WE are not stupid PEOPLE. Our city government needs to take a self exam. Put the blame on who is responsible Chicago and other areas are taking OVER .

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  35. our city sucks. our police officers are more interested in a traffic violations. going 40 in a 35. are you serious. I live on a road without sidewalks. our speed is 40 but you get on 18th and the speed drops to 35. This is just a way for our county to get more money out of our pocket. Tippecanoe county will have their leverage. Whether it be for LPD. you BETTER MARK YOUR WORD. they will uphold their own.

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  36. I believe officer Williams' father is also involved in law enforcement. If so, he may have influenced the "powers that be" to keep his son on the force. This should be investigated as well!

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    1. Yes, Charlie Williams Sr. was the Major (2nd in command after the Sheriff) of the TCPD when all of this occurred. He is still apart of the Sheriff's dept. but now holds a lower rank since the new Sheriff, Barry Richards took office. I believe that Williams Sr. would of ran for Sheriff if his son Charlie Williams Jr. wasn't involved in so many wrong doings...his sons actions obviously are not good for politics. Why would Dave Heath want to run again when he is pushing 70 yrs old...because Williams couldn't and somebody from the "ol' boys club" had to try so they could keep doing what they want to do.

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  37. Cops should be treated like everyone else when committing a crime/violation. I have never had a bad experience myself with the police but it only takes a few dildos like this crew to leave a bad taste in everyone's mouth.

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    1. get rid of these bad cops, there are a lot of good people here who want to be Good Police Officers.

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  38. DON'T TREAD ON ME!!!

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  39. I must wonder how many commentators here have criminal records thus might be ever so slightly biased

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    1. VanderPlaats doesn't have any criminal record, but the officers involved have a record of misconduct within the police department. So, what was your point again? Yeah, you should just shut up.

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  40. you sound like a cop

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  41. So they admitted to carrying a concealed weapon and firing it while under the influence of alcohol in a public place? Felony much?

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  42. You don't have to sell you're body to the night, Roxanne.

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  43. The issues at hand is what needs to be addressed. The officers have already been held accountable for their actions in the PAST. Moving forward, let's focus on the issues at hand. Do you want your past and everything you've done brought up every single time you've done something wrong? I understand they are officers and they are held to higher standards. I also understand they are humans and have a right to be treated fair. I'm not supporting what they did or didn't do, we can't be the judge and we don't know all the facts.

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    1. you got to be kidding.

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  44. The problem is that they were NOT held accountable the same way a private citizen would have been.

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  45. When u Have an ex-crooked cop for mayor,the police department will just follow.......
    Fire every damn worthless officer we have and start over from scratch.... And u can have a clean record like I do and still get harassed by the lpd ,I know I do and Get harassed plenty... Must be because I walk everywhere I go...

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  46. Funny how so many are so quick to write off the entire department because of the admittedly INEXCUSABLE actions of a few. I work with SEVERAL idiots. That doesn't mean that the whole company is sub-standard.

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  47. very funny,a bradberry boy in the paper is in big trouble for threads,but lafayette police officers can get away with threads??

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  48. Thanks for providing such deeper insights but I don’t think this case will go anywhere due to one simple reason that sheriff is being involved. My friend works with a Los Angeles DUI attorney and he often tells me how such cases make some noise and then slip under the radar.

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  49. well its now the last of june, all this is by now under the mayor rug

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  50. A very good and informative article. Thanks for sharing with us.

    linda ikeji

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  51. the first 0f 2016, only hope the cops are being watched.

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  52. all the good officers will be taking the heat for these bad cops

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  53. Lpd beat me unconcious tazed me w lost tazer and prosecutor charged me w battery on cop. Gonna file civil complaint. Bet grimes worked on dec. 7-8. Too.

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  54. they still got the cops on the force

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