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Dirty Cops: BPD Corruption

Evidence Tampering

NEW! – 14 Month Probe targeting cops over missing drugs stored in BPD evidence warehouse reveals over 1000 cases of tampering over a 16 yr. period. Boston’s Finest?

Find out more about BPD Drug Evidence Tampering

Boston’s #1 Dirty Cop

KeelerDetective Sgt. Daniel Keeler is a 27-year BPD veteran. Keeler, a former U.S. Marine is also known as “Mr. Homicide” for his remarkable track record of clearing more than 200 murder cases. Keeler won the department’s medal of honor, its highest award for bravery, when he rescued a drowning man from the Charles River. Keeler is the perfect example of the highly decorated cop who is also despicably dirty.

Keeler’s Dirty Track Record – Notables

*Jermain Goffigan case… Framed Donnell Johnson for the murder by supressing evidence and testimony and helped send an innocent young black man to jail. Subsequently brought up on federal charges for lying to a jury and obstructing justice. Donnel Johnson was released from Jail.

*Humboldt Shooting – Det. Keeler opened fire on John Powell on a busy afternoon on Humboldt Ave.  Keeler fired off 8 shots at a disarmed man, many of which lodged in neighboring residents and businesses. – Read On for full details-

Shades of Keeler

By: DAVID S. BERNSTEIN, Boston Phoenix 9/13/2006
Full story from the BOSTON PHOENIX

Arrests and acquittals

Keeler was later assigned to a regular homicide squad. On Halloween evening, 1994, nine-year-old Jermaine Goffigan was fatally shot on his front porch in Roxbury’s Academy Homes projects. Keeler and Detective William Maloney, working on a tip, quickly arrested Donnell Johnson. In the first interrogation with Keeler, Johnson gave an alibi: he was home with his family that night. That alibi — in fact, the very fact that the questioning took place — was never passed on to the prosecutors, as required by law. (A judge later called the episode “deeply troubling”: Maloney was suspended for 30 days but Keeler was not disciplined.) In 2000, Johnson was exonerated when federal investigators discovered that two other men, who later pled guilty, had committed the murder.

After discussing 12 years of Keeler cases with prosecutors, defense attorneys, investigators, and others — and reviewing court documents, transcripts, and other case materials — one detects a distinct pattern, particularly in high-profile cases, such as those involving murdered children. That pattern includes vague circumstances leading Keeler to a suspect; information never making it to the defense counsel; and eventual acquittal or exoneration, long after Keeler has enjoyed the glory of solving a case.

Anthony Jones was acquitted twice on Keeler cases, from 1993 and 1994; Leon Dixon was acquitted of a 1996 murder; Felix Santiago’s conviction for the 1994 murder of a pregnant 17-year-old was overturned and he was not retried; Lamarr Smith was acquitted of the 1997 murder of a 16-year-old. Marlon Passley was convicted for a 1995 murder and exonerated for it in 1999. Keeler was involved with all of these cases.

Another case, from a 1998 murder, ended in acquittal after the key witness recounted on the stand how Keeler helped him clear up some pending charges, and offered to use his influence to obtain a green card — contradicting Keeler’s claim under oath that he gave no assistance or promises to the witness.

But a detective’s name is built on closing cases, not on what happens to those cases later. That, along with Keeler’s reputation for hard work — he is consistently among the top overtime-earners in the department — moved him to the top of the pile. By the late ’90s he was supervising the late-night squad — which put him in charge of hundreds of violent-crime scenes every year. The department’s confidence in the self-described “Mr. Homicide” gave Keeler nearly free rein over dozens of homicide investigations.

In fact, in March 2001 the department picked Keeler to be the main subject for the ABC News documentary Boston 24/7 — a decision that would prove ill-fated. During the film, Keeler celebrates his apparent solving of a brutal murder: the beheading of William Leyden. Keeler pinned the gruesome act on Leyden’s brother, John. Three years later, Leyden was exonerated when serial killer Eugene McCollum confessed — and Keeler verified his guilt by finding the head in the exact spot, in a Florida playground, where McCollum said he buried it.

Leyden’s exoneration in early 2004 proved to be the first in a torrent of Keeler embarrassments. That April, Kyle Bryant was acquitted of the 1999 murder of his pregnant 14-year-old girlfriend, with jurors telling the local media that the recording of Keeler’s heavy-handed interrogation played a key role in their verdict. In November, jury members again blamed Keeler’s investigation, after they acquitted James Bush for the murder of three-year-old Malik Andrade-Percival. One juror told the Herald that Keeler “messed this entire case up.”

In that same case, the defense attorney forced Keeler to admit to making false statements in an affidavit seeking search warrants — which some consider even more damaging to his credibility in future trials.

In December 2004, a jury acquitted one of the two men accused of killing 10-year-old Trina Persad in 2002. The judge stopped the trial while the jury was still deliberating on the other defendant, Joseph Cousin, due to allegations that jurors had lied on their forms. It was yet another high-profile murder case Keeler appeared to solve that later unraveled in court.

Moved to the side

In addition to the headline-grabbing acquittals, still other issues haunted Keeler.

In September 2002, Keeler shot a murder suspect (John Powell) in the head in the middle of a busy street (Humboldt Ave., Roxbury). The shooting was ruled justified, and the man was later convicted of murder. But it raised questions about his judgment. Keeler was also rebuked for a December 2003 incident in which he ignored a suspect’s request for an attorney while questioning him in his hospital bed.

Over the years, Keeler has become the subject of several lawsuits. While investigating the murder of Jose Deveiga, two officers under Keeler’s command pulled an innocent man from his home, in his underwear and bound in handcuffs, with television cameras rolling. The man, Carlos Pineda, is suing Keeler and the officers. Attorney Stephen Hrones sued Keeler in 2003 for slander. Keeler won a dismissal of that suit, but was a key player in another lawsuit, in which homicide detectives — particularly Keeler — were accused of abusing the court-overtime system. The officer who claimed he was fired for blowing the whistle on that abuse won his lawsuit against the BPD earlier this year.

In April 2004, two months after Kathleen O’Toole took over as police commissioner, shortly after charges were dropped against John Leyden, and as Kyle Bryant was heading to trial, Keeler quietly transferred out of the homicide unit to supervise district D4 detectives in the Kenmore/South End area.

Keeler, department spokespeople, and other sources agree that the transfer was voluntary, but no one has provided a detailed explanation for the change. Many doubt that Keeler would have left without a fight. Some speculate that Keeler was simply burned out. Speaking with the Phoenix last year, Keeler claimed the DA’s office pressured O’Toole to force him out in order to make him a scapegoat for their trial losses. Sources inside Conley’s office deny this.

Keeler still had dozens of cases awaiting trial — and some prosecutors in Conley’s office admit that they became increasingly reluctant to have Keeler testify, as defense attorneys gained more and more ammunition with which to cast doubt on his integrity and methods.

For whatever reason, Conley’s office has dropped charges on more than a half-dozen murder suspects in Keeler investigations over the past year. They have also offered plea deals, sometimes quite generous, in other Keeler cases.

Conley’s office wasn’t the only one uncomfortable with Keeler. Federal prosecutors have also appeared unwilling to use him in court.

In July 2000, the feds nabbed notorious gangbanger Augusto Lopes in a sting; Keeler convinced Lopes to give up information on a host of others. Lopes ultimately admitted involvement in more than 20 shootings, including three fatalities, and received a sweetheart deal of 10 years in prison. But Keeler, who extracted the information, was never even listed by prosecutors as a potential witness in any of the subsequent trials — in fact, his name is noticeably absent from almost all of their voluminous materials.

There was already bad blood there. In 1999, Keeler had yelled at a federal prosecutor in the halls of the US Attorney’s office during an ongoing feud over the BPD’s prosecution of federal informant Kenyatti Jordan. In that flap, Keeler was defending his BPD colleagues’ use of statements given by Jordan while under a federal-immunity deal, a maneuver that infuriated the US attorneys.

In the Lopes cases, jurors overwhelmingly rejected Lopes as a liar, handing down acquittals in every case in which he was the crucial witness.

Winding down?

Now, with last month’s charge that he swiped shades from Newbury Street boutique Solstice, Keeler may have finally stepped beyond the pale — even by BPD standards.

Even before the Solstice incident, Keeler had been unable to avoid controversy within the relative quiet of district D4.

Just two months after his transfer, Keeler led the response to a South End apartment, where police ended up fatally shooting a mentally ill man Luis Gonzalez.

Later that year, Keeler arrested a man for a headline-grabbing non-fatal shooting of 11-year-old Kirk Gordon during a Pop Warner football tryout. Conley’s office ended up dropping the charges.

Full story on Detective Keeler from the BOSTON PHOENIX

Boston Police Drug Dealers

Sept. 14 2006

Read the full story about BPD Drug Dealers

Three veteran Boston Police Department officers were indicted today by a federal Grand Jury for conspiring to possess with intent to distribute cocaine and heroin. In July, the men were arrested in an FBI undercover sting operation after they had traveled to Miami, Florida to receive a $35,000 payment for protecting what they believed to be 100 kilograms of cocaine.

United States Attorney Michael J. Sullivan; Kenneth W. Kaiser, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Albert Goslin, Superintendent in Chief of the Boston Police Department, announced today that ROBERTO "KIKO" PULIDO, age 41, of 57 Leighton Road in Boston, CARLOS A. PIZARRO, age 36, of 8 Lenoxdale Avenue in Boston, and NELSON CARRASQUILLO, age 35, of 101 Gallivan Boulevard in Boston, were charged in an Indictment with one count of conspiring to possess with intent to distribute more than 5 kilograms of cocaine and more than 1 kilogram of heroin. PULIDO and CARRASQUILLO were charged in a second count with attempting to aid and abet the possession of cocaine with intent to distribute on or about April 23, 2006. PULIDO, CARRASQUILLO and PIZARRO were charged in a third count with attempting to aid and abet the possession of cocaine with intent to distribute on June 8, 2006.

PULIDO and PIZARRO have been BPD officers since 1996 and CARRASQUILLO since 1999. Both PULIDO and CARRASQUILLO were most recently assigned to the Special Operations Division, Mobile Operations Patrol. PIZARRO is a patrol officer in Area D-4 (South End). All three were placed on administrative leave shortly after their arrest in July 2006.

Read More about BPD Officers Dealing Drugs

2 Correction Officers in 2 Weeks on Drug Charges

Boston Globe
Feb. 1, 2003

On the day that the second Nashua Street Jail officer in two weeks was arraigned on drug charges, Suffolk County Sheriff Andrea Cabral said yesterday that the investigations that led to the two arrests were part of an ongoing effort to roust out corrupt officers and restore integrity and professionalism to the department.

James E. Hardmon Jr., 35, of Medford, was ordered held on $25,000 cash bail after he pleaded not guilty in East Boston District Court yesterday to charges that he tried to smuggle cocaine to an inmate at Nashua Street Jail, where he worked as a guard, according to the Suffolk district attorney’s office. Hardmon was arrested in Winthrop Thursday following a monthlong investigation by the sheriff’s department, during which he allegedly accepted an ounce of cocaine from an undercover State Police detective, as well as a $500 fee for delivering the drug to an inmate, prosecutors said. 

Read More about 2 CO’s in 2 Weeks Caught on Drug Charges

Drunk Boston Cop Shoots Another Cop

October 2006 A Boston Police officer is indicted in Suffolk Superior Court in connection with the shooting of a fellow officer that took place while both men were off duty and allegedly drunk after leaving bars this summer.

A Suffolk County grand jury returned an indictment charging officer PAUL DURKIN, 49, with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon for allegedly firing his Glock .40-caliber service weapon at fellow officer Joseph Behnke outside Behnke’s West Roxbury home. The incident, which took place in the early morning hours of June 22, left Behnke with a wound to his hip. The incident started when Behnke tried to convince Durkin that he (Durkin) was too drunk to drive and should remain at Behnke’s home.

Read More About Drunk Boston Cop Shooting Another Cop

The Michael Cox Incident
Black Cop Beaten by fellow officers
Boston Police Officers severely beat fellow officer Michael A. Cox. Cox is a Black Male Police Officer in Plainclothes and received a routine beating like the rest of us… suprise, suprise, of course, his fellow officers lied and covered evidence most notably Officer Conley. Subsequently, three officers were found liable by a jury of beating Cox in 1995. The city paid the beaten officer, Michael A. Cox, $1 million for his injuries.

Boston Officers Eyed in Drug Thefts
Updated: October 26th, 2006 02:36 PM EDT

Courtesy of The Boston Herald

The Boston police anti-corruption unit is investigating whether cops stole the drugs that are missing from a Hyde Park evidence warehouse – jeopardizing ongoing criminal cases in the latest embarrassing blow to a department already rocked by scandal.

Earlier this month, the Herald reported drugs had gone missing as police moved mountains of seized cocaine, heroin, marijuana and other drugs from one section of the warehouse to another.

While some of those drugs were later found, acting police commissioner Al Goslin said at the time an audit was under way to determine whether more drugs had been stolen or were misplaced.

Late yesterday, Boston police acknowledged that drugs are in fact missing. 

more info here…

Police Corruption Trial in Boston – full story here…
Published: July 1, 1988

At a trial in Federal District Court, the Government outlined its case against seven present and former Boston police detectives accused of systematically extorting money and favors from the owners of some of this city’s most popular restaurants and nightclubs.

The 58-count indictment was the result of a six-year investigation of police corruption in Boston. More indictments are expected, according to the authorities, who have said that up to 50 officers may be implicated.

full story here…

Random Misfit Cops

* Sgt. Thomas R. Matheson who failed to report the seizure of $10,000 from a suspected drug dealer during a 1988 Dorchester raid. 

Matheson, a 14-year-veteran of the drug unit, was suspended for two weeks without pay, stripped of his detective rating and assigned to the ID unit in 1991. He retired two years ago, a department spokeswoman said. 

* Sgt. Daniel Dovidio began serving a 45-day suspension in 2001 after an internal investigation showed he allowed officers to lie in their reports about the 1995 beating of Sgt. Michael Cox.

* Sgt. Detective Leonard W. Marquardt, who for years was the direct supervisor in Area E-5 of two veteran detectives later imprisoned for stealing at least $250,000 in cash and other property from suspected drug dealers.

Walter F. Robinson Jr. and Kenneth Acerra both served three years in prison following their 1997 guilty pleas in U.S. District Court in Boston.

After their pleas, Marquardt resigned from the department, a police spokeswoman confirmed.

In 1972, Marquardt was suspended for six months after charges that he beat a suspect who stabbed another officer were sustained.

In 1989, Marquardt and another detective were ordered by a federal jury to pay $25,000 in punitive damages to Michael Needham after finding the officers guilty of falsely arresting Needham in a 1979 confrontation in a Jamaica Plain tavern.

* Officer Thomas Traynor, who was sent to the ID unit from Area A-1 in December 1996 after a federal drug informant claimed he drank beer with Traynor and his partner in their cruiser outside a downtown after-hours police club just before he got into a fatal accident on Route 128. Both officers were on-duty.

The convicted drug dealer, Ramin Mojabi, pleaded guilty to motor vehicle homicide in February, 1998 and was sentenced to seven- to 12-years in prison for the death of 25-year-old Juan Chavez, killed on his way to work at 6:40 a.m.

A year before Evans transferred him to ID, Traynor beat the second of two drunk driving arrests, records show. He retired in 2000, a police spokeswoman said.

Other BPD employees who worked in the ID unit were fired for stealing, including Whitney “Wade” Williams, a civilian worker, who was fired in 1995 from his clerk’s post after eight years with the ID unit.

That came after police discovered he used weapons, ammunition and BPD gear such as caps and windbreakers with the department logo to pull off armed robberies.

Technicians in the ID unit – including officer Dennis LeBlanc – are now part of a probe by Reilly’soffice into how they used another person’s fingerprint to convictStephan Cowans of the shooting of a Boston cop in 1997.

LeBlanc, who was first assigned to the ID unit in 1985, was suspended for 10 days in 1992 after he was caught pantless and drunk while off-duty on the banks of the Charles River, police sources confirmed.

Cowans was freed from prison in January after 6 years behind bars following his wrongful conviction for shooting Sgt. Detective Gregory Gallagher in the buttocks with Gallagher’s own gun.

LeBlanc, a key witness at trial, testified the fingerprint belonged to Cowans.

full story here…

More Misfits….

In 1998, two officers pleaded guilty to extorting $200,000 from drug dealers while working for Boston police, and to lying on their federal tax forms. Walter Robinson and Kenneth Acerra were each sentenced to three years in prison and ordered to pay $200,000 in restitution.

1999, a white Boston Police patrolman, Daniel A. Wallace, was disciplined for hanging a makeshift noose over a motorcycle belonging to a black lieutenant.

2000, a former Boston Police officer, David L. Corbin, was charged in federal court with extorting over $40,000 in bribes from taxi drivers looking for licenses. 
more info here…

full story here…

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