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  1. #1
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    NYPD Detectives Not Guilty in Bell Shooting

    http://www.cnn.com/2008/CRIME/04/25/...ial/index.html

    NEW YORK (CNN) -- A judge acquitted three New York Police Department detectives of all charges Friday morning in the shooting death of an unarmed man in a 50-bullet barrage, hours before he was to be married.
    Detectives Michael Oliver and Gescard Isnora were found not guilty of charges of manslaughter, assault and reckless endangerment in the death of Sean Bell, 23, and the wounding of two of his friends.
    Detective Marc Cooper was acquitted of reckless endangerment.
    Justice Arthur Cooperman issued his verdict in the bench trial. There was no jury.
    Hundreds of people gathered outside the Queens courthouse in anticipation of the verdict.
    The Rev. Al Sharpton called for calm Wednesday. He was accompanied by Bell's fiancee and other supporters on the steps of City Hall.
    Bell, 23, was killed just before dawn on his wedding day, November 25, 2006. He and several friends were winding up an all-night bachelor party at the Kalua Club in Queens, a strip club that was under investigation by a NYPD undercover unit looking into complaints of guns, drugs and prostitution.
    Undercover detectives were inside the club, and plain-clothes officers were stationed outside.
    Witnesses said that about 4 a.m., closing time, as Bell and his friends left the club, an argument broke out. Believing that one of Bell's friends, Joseph Guzman, was going to get a gun from Bell's car, one of the undercover detectives followed the men and called for backup.
    What happened next was at the heart of the trial, prosecuted by the assistant district attorney in Queens.
    Bell, Guzman and Trent Benefield got into the car, with Bell at the wheel. The detectives drew their weapons, said Guzman and Benefield, who testified that they never heard the plain-clothes detectives identify themselves as police.
    Bell was in a panic to get away from the armed men, his friends testified.
    But the detectives thought Bell was trying to run down one of them, according to their lawyers, believed that their lives were in danger and started shooting.
    In a frantic 911 call, police can be heard saying, "Shots fired. Undercover units involved."
    A total of 50 bullets were fired by five NYPD officers. Only three were charged with crimes.
    Oliver, who reloaded his semiautomatic in the middle of the fray, fired 31 times, Isnora fired 11 times, and Cooper, whose leg was brushed by Bell's moving car, fired four times, the NYPD said.
    No gun was found near Bell or his friends.
    Soon after his death, Sean Bell's fiancee, Nicole Paultre, legally changed her name to Nicole Paultre Bell. She is now raising the couple's two daughters, ages 5 and 1.
    "I tell [them] that Daddy's in heaven now," she said. "He's watching over us. He's our guardian angel. He's going to be here to protect us and make sure nothing happens to us."
    Detectives Endowment Association President Michael Palladino said forensic and scientific evidence presented during the seven-week trial contradicts the testimony of prosecution witnesses.
    But Paultre Bell's father, Lester Paultre, said, "For those naysayers who say the police was doing their job, they should imagine their child in that car being shot by the police for no reason."
    Paultre Bell, Guzman and Benefield have filed a wrongful-death lawsuit in federal court that has been stayed pending the outcome of the criminal trial. Guzman was shot 16 times, and four bullets, too dangerous to remove, remain in his body, according to his lawyer, Sanford Rubenstein.
    Federal prosecutors in the Eastern District of New York have been monitoring the trial. In the event of an acquittal, it is likely authorities would conduct a review to determine whether there were any civil rights violations. All three victims were African-American.
    "never bring paws to a gunfight" - Jenna

  2. #2
    MonsterMash's Avatar
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    Guess New York will riot now. Oh, BTW...if they do, will one of the boys in blue please, PLEASE get some stick time in on Al Sharpton?
    Are you a 3%er? If you aren't, you should be.

  3. #3
    Xiphos's Avatar
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    It's so obvious this was a good shoot, it's too bad they were prosecuted because of the media coverage and politics. I'm glad they got their day in court and exonerated themselves.

    I expect the feds to step in now and violate double jeopardy with a civil rights prosecution.
    Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.

    That which does not kill me, better start fucking running.

    If I lived every day like it was my last, the body count would be staggering.

    I intend to go in harm's way. -John Paul Jones

    Hunt the wolf, and bring light to the dark places that others fear to go. LT COL Dave Grossman

  4. #4
    Ducky's Avatar
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    Wow, great slant on the article They're painting the guy as a saint when he was anything but. Now can we expect riots like what happened after Rodney King?

    Damn good news about the verdict. Kudos for the judge for making the right call, even when politically inconvenient.
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  5. #5
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    At first Sharpton and the rest stated that they would respect the judge's decision yada yada yada and since it didn't go as they hoped it would, they are going to "shut the city down." The officers went for a trial by judge, which they were entitiled to do. I read in the Daily News that someone shouted KKK in the courtroom. Wow, considering that none of the officers are /were white. Anything for attention I guess.

  6. #6
    Standard Dave's Avatar
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    As and outsider I found this a strange case.

    The constant mentions of racism in all the coverage did confuse me as none of the officers appeared to be white of european origin do some people have a victim complex.
    "all that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing" Edmund Burke.
    "the world is a dangerous place place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who do not do anything about it" Albert Einstein

  7. #7
    Xiphos's Avatar
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    What drives me crazy is the biased media coverage. They keep referring to the guy as unarmed yet he was behind the wheel and trying to run a cop over. The media would love to incite NY to riot so they can boost their ratings.
    Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.

    That which does not kill me, better start fucking running.

    If I lived every day like it was my last, the body count would be staggering.

    I intend to go in harm's way. -John Paul Jones

    Hunt the wolf, and bring light to the dark places that others fear to go. LT COL Dave Grossman

  8. #8
    Ducky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xiphos View Post
    What drives me crazy is the biased media coverage. They keep referring to the guy as unarmed yet he was behind the wheel and trying to run a cop over. The media would love to incite NY to riot so they can boost their ratings.
    Not just the media, Sharpton is actively trying to incite 'civil disobedience' which alone should get him beaten to death in a dark alley.
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    "...but to forget your duck, of course, means you're really screwed." - Gary Larson
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MtN1YnoL46Q


  9. #9
    Xiphos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ducky View Post
    Not just the media, Sharpton is actively trying to incite 'civil disobedience' which alone should get him beaten to death in a dark alley.
    He had that coming decades ago.
    Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.

    That which does not kill me, better start fucking running.

    If I lived every day like it was my last, the body count would be staggering.

    I intend to go in harm's way. -John Paul Jones

    Hunt the wolf, and bring light to the dark places that others fear to go. LT COL Dave Grossman

  10. #10
    Coloradocop's Avatar
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    Sharpton truly is a piece of work.

  11. #11
    Xiphos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coloradocop View Post
    Sharpton truly is a piece of work.
    A piece of what?

    Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.

    That which does not kill me, better start fucking running.

    If I lived every day like it was my last, the body count would be staggering.

    I intend to go in harm's way. -John Paul Jones

    Hunt the wolf, and bring light to the dark places that others fear to go. LT COL Dave Grossman

  12. #12
    Ducky's Avatar
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    ^ isn't that RSA's flag?
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    "...but to forget your duck, of course, means you're really screwed." - Gary Larson
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MtN1YnoL46Q


 

 

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