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Former Riverside, Ca Pd Officer Aquitted!!

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  • Former Riverside, Ca Pd Officer Aquitted!!

    Former Marine Acquitted of Iraqi Killings in Landmark Trial
    Thursday, August 28, 2008

    Former Marine Sgt. Jose Luis Nazario Jr., 28, of New York.
    IRVINE, Calif. — A former Marine accused of killing unarmed Iraqi detainees was acquitted of voluntary manslaughter Thursday in a first-of-its-kind federal trial.

    The jury took six hours to find Jose Luis Nazario Jr. not guilty of charges that he killed or caused others to kill four unarmed detainees on Nov. 9, 2004, in Fallujah, Iraq, during some of the fiercest fighting of the war.

    The verdict left the 28-year-old defendant in tears. He cried so loud that the judge smacked his gavel to call for order. Nazario's family and friends also sobbed in the courtroom.

    "It's been a long, hard year for my family," Nazario said outside the courtroom. "I need a moment to catch my breath and try to get my life back together."

    Thursday's verdict marks the first time a civilian jury has determined whether the alleged actions of a former military service member in combat violated the law of war.

    One of the jurors, Ingrid Wicken, hugged Nazario's sobbing mother, Sandra Montanez, without speaking after the verdict was read. "I watched her all week. She was being tortured every day," Wicken said later.

    Wicken said the panel acquitted Nazario because there was not enough evidence against him.

    "I think you don't know what goes on in combat until you are in combat," she said.

    Nazario's attorney, Kevin McDermott, said he believes the verdict will curb faulty filings.

    "I don't think they are going to put on a case in the future with a lack of evidence," McDermott said.

    Prosecutors alleged that Nazario either killed or caused others to kill four unarmed Iraqi detainees in Fallujah during "Operation Phantom Fury," which resulted in house-to-house fighting.

    Other former Marines testified during the five-day trial that they did not see Nazario kill detainees but heard the gunshots.

    The case came to light in 2006 when Sgt. Ryan Weemer, Nazario's former squadmate, volunteered details to a U.S. Secret Service job interviewer during a lie-detector screening that included a question about the most serious crime he ever committed. That screening was not admitted at Nazario's trial.

    Weemer and another Marine, Sgt. Jermaine Nelson, face military charges of unpremeditated murder and dereliction of duty. Both maintain their innocence, and both were found in contempt of court for refusing to testify against Nazario.

    Had Nazario been convicted of voluntary manslaughter, assault with a deadly weapon and discharging a firearm during a crime of violence, he could have faced more than 10 years in prison.

    On Wednesday, federal prosecutor Jerry Behnke urged the jury to convict Nazario, saying he violated his duty as a Marine and must be held accountable for his actions in Fallujah. He said the evidence showed the detainees had surrendered before the shooting.

    McDermott told jurors they could not convict the former Marine sergeant of an alleged crime in which there were no bodies, no identities and no forensics. He also argued that a guilty verdict would only make service members second-guess their actions in combat.

    Nazario is the first former military service member brought to trial under the Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act, which was written in 2000 and amended in 2004 primarily to allow prosecution of civilian contractors who commit crimes while working for the U.S. overseas. It also allows the prosecution of military dependents and former military service members accused of committing crimes outside the United States.
    I am glad to see this verdict. Nazario was one of my academy classmates. About time we stopped punishing our men and women in uniform for doing their job. If you haven't been in combat, you have no business judging those who have.

    He was released from probation when the charges were brought up. I have heard RPD was willing to re-hire him if aquitted. Hopefully they make good on the deal and he can start re-building his life again.
    Never give in--never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.
    --Winston Churchill--

    "Si vis pacem, para bellum"

  • #2
    The case came to light in 2006 when Sgt. Ryan Weemer, Nazario's former squadmate, volunteered details to a U.S. Secret Service job interviewer during a lie-detector screening that included a question about the most serious crime he ever committed. That screening was not admitted at Nazario's trial.
    This is nearly as bad as that guy who admitted to child molestation in the state trooper polygraph.

    I mean did this guy actually think he would get hired after admitting to that?
    What is Perseverance?
    -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
    -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
    -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


    BOP - BPA - ICE

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    • #3
      The plan is he is going to be expidited back on our department ASAP. Great news for us.
      Well...Bye

      Comment


      • #4
        Good to hear. His removal from your streets was definately the city's loss.
        Never give in--never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.
        --Winston Churchill--

        "Si vis pacem, para bellum"

        Comment


        • #5
          Very good for him; I was sad to hear that he had been released due to the situation.

          Tucson Police Department
          07/27/08 : Applied
          09/27/08 : Written Test 89/100
          09/28/08 : PT Test Finished Top 3 In Group A
          09/29/08 : Oral Board I Must've Done Well
          10/03/08 : Eligibility Rank #3 Of 51 Remaining
          10/13/08 : Polygraph Passed
          10/15/08 : BI Initiated

          Arizona Highway Patrol
          08/18/08 : Applied
          10/13/08 : Withdrawn

          Pima County Sheriffs
          10/25/08 : PT Test
          10/25/08 : Written Test
          10/27/08 : Oral Board


          "An Arizona Law Enforcement Hopeful"

          Comment


          • #6
            So this guy was fired before the trial?
            What is Perseverance?
            -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
            -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
            -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


            BOP - BPA - ICE

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by TheKansan View Post
              So this guy was fired before the trial?
              Yes.
              "First of all, then we have to say the American public overwhelmingly voted for socialism when they elected President Obama." - Al Sharpton, March 21, 2010

              Comment


              • #8
                Ok, so the *** WIPES that run your Dept. found him guilty long before the trial. What happened to innocent untill proven guilty.
                Bill

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by DETSGT View Post
                  Ok, so the *** WIPES that run your Dept. found him guilty long before the trial. What happened to innocent untill proven guilty.
                  Bill
                  They did not find him guilty. He was a probationary officer who could be let go at any time without cause.

                  You cannot keep someone on duty as a police officer if he has been indicted and is being tried for murder.
                  Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored. -- Aldous Huxley
                  Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity. -- Albert Einstein

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hmmmm...Intelligence information is suggesting Riverside's City Manager is backsliding on a decision to re-hire. I hope it's not the case. If so,,,,there's going to be some heat comming down on this dump!!!
                    Well...Bye

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I listened to an interview on the radio last night with his attorney (obviously a questionable source). The lawyer indicated Nazario was in his 17 month of an 18 month probation period when he was arrested and discharged from the department. He claimed NCIS personnel had him dispatched to the station "on a ruse" and then tackled him in the WC's office to disarm Nazario because they believed he might use his service weapon on those around him!

                      It's a very sad state of affairs when soldiers are tried in local courts for offenses that are alleged to have occurred while fighting in a war thousands of miles away. I'm glad he was found not guilty, but returning him to his job as a police officer shouldn't even be an issue. He should be back to work as soon as he wants to be.
                      "I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The Chief told RPOA reps a while ago that he would hire him back right away if he was aquitted of these charges. As soon as the verdicts were read, Nazario walked right over to the Orange Street Station (across the street from the federal courthouse) and spoke to a Captain and Lt., who knew he was coming because phone calls were being made like crazy. The Chief opted to leave before Nazario got there (that wasn't a good sign)...but Nazario was warmly welcomed be the Capt. and Lt. He was told to re-apply and they would expidite and update his background to get him back on. As of yesterday, the City Manager (closed door session) indicated he wasn't just going to "create" another position for Nazario, and said it was up to the Chief if he wanted to re-hire him. He wasn't very welcoming to the idea of Nazario coming back. That's nonsense, because we all know the City Manager is the Chief's boss and tells him what to do. So far, I haven't heard what the Chief is going to do (or is told to do!)

                        The sad thing is, Nazario was on probation, and they don't have to hire him back. I'e been reading alot of comments (blogs) made about his aquittal in the L.A. Times, and there is alot of people voicing that he should have been found guilty (alot the other way too), "Shame on Larson" and pointing out that Larson was a Bush appointee ect..ect..ect.. I have a funny feeling his may get too political for Riverside P.D. I hope I'm wrong.
                        Well...Bye

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Are you guys in Riverside willing to go to the streets and make a big stink for this guy? I am glad things worked out right for him at his trial. Now I hope things continue to go the right way for him.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by bamacop View Post
                            Are you guys in Riverside willing to go to the streets and make a big stink for this guy? I am glad things worked out right for him at his trial. Now I hope things continue to go the right way for him.
                            It was made clear that employees and other big organizations are going to rain down on city hall if they don't do the right thing.
                            Well...Bye

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by TheInlandEmpire View Post
                              I'e been reading alot of comments (blogs) made about his aquittal in the L.A. Times, and there is alot of people voicing that he should have been found guilty (alot the other way too), "Shame on Larson" and pointing out that Larson was a Bush appointee ect..ect..ect..
                              That's just everyday fodder printed by the L.A. Crimes.

                              Comment

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