May 4, 2015 |
John Paff retreats to a small room in his chilly basement each morning and fires up his computer. Methodically, he lets fly a barrage of e-mails to pry loose confidential documents that local governments and New Jersey agencies closely guard. Disciplinary reports of rogue cops. Dashboard footage of traffic stops. Ethics violations filed against lawyers. Health benefits that part-time officials quietly give themselves. As chair of the Open Government Advocacy Project for the New Jersey Libertarian Party, Paff submits about 700 requests for documents from local governments across the state each year.
April 2, 2015 |
A Main Line prep-school assistant basketball coach told a federal jury Tuesday that Philadelphia narcotics officers robbed him blind during a 2007 search of his City Avenue apartment. Their purported haul? A safe stuffed with $80,000 in drug proceeds, clothes, a pair of flashy sunglasses, and a DVD he had rented from Blockbuster. What Robert Kushner appeared less eager to discuss, as he testified at those same officers' federal corruption trial, was what brought the police to his apartment in the first place.
April 1, 2015 |
DEFENSE ATTORNEYS for the ex-narcotics cops accused of robbing suspected drug dealers went on the attack yesterday, calling the alleged victims "despicable liars. " They also lambasted Jeffrey Walker, a former narcotics cop-turned-cooperating government witness. Defense lawyer Jack McMahon, in his typical bulldog manner, called Walker "dirty and despicable, dumb and arrogant. " McMahon said he will put on the stand the narcotics cops' supervisors - who were at the scenes of the alleged robberies - to show there was no wrongdoing.
November 15, 2014 |
A FORMER Philly cop, fired for making a questionable arrest of an Iraqi War veteran last year, testified yesterday that he released the man without filing charges because of the man's military service. Kevin Corcoran, 34, said he cut Roderick King loose even after King cursed at him, challenged him to fight and refused to give his name while handcuffed and facedown in the officer's marked SUV during the wee hours of March 31, 2013. Corcoran, on trial in Common Pleas Court for false imprisonment, official oppression and obstructing the administration of law, said that King showed "a complete range of emotions" before breaking into tears and sharing that he had served in the Air Force during the Iraqi War. "I felt bad for the guy . . . I said, 'I'm going to cut you a break,' " a calm and confident-appearing Corcoran said while being questioned by his lawyer, Fortunato Perri Jr. Assistant District Attorney Michael Bonner told the jury during his closing argument yesterday that the former cop's version of events was "a fabrication, a convenient after-defense for when this defendant got caught.
November 14, 2014 |
FORMER Philadelphia police officer Kevin Corcoran, who was fired after making a questionable arrest during a traffic altercation last year, was either a "rogue" cop or an "innocent man" just trying to get home safely to his family. The conflicting portrayals of Corcoran, 34, came during opening statements yesterday in Common Pleas Court, where he is being tried for obstructing the administration of law, official oppression and false imprisonment. The man Corcoran handcuffed and drove to a dark Center City alley at 2 a.m. March 31, 2013, testified that he did nothing illegal and that he felt he was at "the mercy" of an enraged cop. "I was worried because of the way he was acting," said Roderick King, 31. "I was scared that I was not safe.
November 13, 2014 |
A prosecutor on Wednesday described former police officer Kevin Corcoran as a "rogue cop" who terrorized and falsely imprisoned a man after an altercation last year in Center City, while a defense lawyer depicted the encounter as a judgment call made during a routine patrol. The conflicting accounts emerged during opening arguments and testimony in Corcoran's trial on charges of false imprisonment, obstruction, and official oppression. In an incident that led to the veteran officer's dismissal and arrest, police say Corcoran handcuffed a man and drove him to a North Philadelphia alley after the man's friend chided him for making an illegal turn in his police SUV. Corcoran released the man only after learning he was a veteran of the Iraq war. Corcoran, 34, denies the charges.
August 15, 2014 |
A FEDERAL JUDGE yesterday denied bail to ex-narcotics cop Thomas Liciardello, finding evidence that he was the "de facto leader" of an alleged group of rogue cops, and that he could pose a danger to the community. After U.S. District Judge Eduardo Robreno ordered him held pending trial on racketeering-conspiracy and robbery charges, Liciardello, 38, looked back toward his wife, Selena, a Philly police officer, and mouthed: "Stay strong. " His wife, who shook as she sat in the gallery next to his mother and stepfather, later cried outside the courtroom.
August 3, 2014 |
Center City barber Kenneth Mills says he narrowly escaped the grip of corrupt Philadelphia narcotics officers. Mills, 46, who runs the Extremely Sharp cuttery on South 10th Street, was identified as victim "K.M. " in this week's federal indictment of six former officers from an elite narcotics unit. The indictment described the role of two of the six officers in a November 2011 raid on Mills' shop and his West Philadelphia rental property. It says Officers Brian Reynolds and Perry Betts stole $4,050 and a gold ring in the raid.
August 1, 2014 |
POLICE! Police!" the narcotics cops screamed after they busted through a locked, red wooden gate, then burst through the door to the couple's Frankford home. About 10 plainclothes cops, some with police badges around their necks, armed with guns and rifles, raced into their house, on the second and third floor of a building, the wife told the Daily News yesterday. More cops were outside, she said. Her husband, a small-business owner, was one of the men allegedly robbed by a band of rogue cops, six of whom were arrested by the feds Wednesday morning.