The Police Lies about Chris Dorner
Updated February 17, 2013
added material on Frank Serpico of NYPD
Christopher Dorner was an honest cop who was destroyed by a dishonest system.
Like Dorner, Frank Serpico was an honest cop who was rejected by an utterly corrupt police force. In 1971, Serpico was the first police officer in the history of the New York City Police Department to step forward to report and subsequently testify about widespread, systemic corruption payoffs amounting to millions of dollars. What does that say about the history of systemic corruption within the NYPD?
THE POLICE LIES ABOUT CHRIS DORNER
“Seven burners deployed, and we have a fire… Fire will be staged at the first contact with the first armored unit down there.”
– Comments between police surrounding the cabin Dorner was hiding in.
“We did not intentionally burn down that cabin to get Mr. Dorner out.”
– San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon, February 13, 2013
There is a saying that the lie is the greatest sin because it is the mother of all sins by allowing other sins to be committed. This is particularly true in the tragic case of Christopher Dorner, which is a case that is wrapped in police lies.
It was a police lie that was behind Chris Dorner being fired by the Los Angeles Police Department in the first place, but it wasn’t his lie. He simply could not accept that a police officer, a white female, would kick a detained person right in the face and then lie about it. This was the lie that was behind Dorner being accused of making false statements and which led to him losing his career with the L.A.P.D. The fact that Dorner was wrongly fired after being accused of being a liar led to his severe depression, which is anger turned inwards. The essence of the Dorner case is that he was an honest and upright man who was rejected and vilified by a corrupt “law enforcement” system in which lies are used every day.
For a saga that began with a lie it seems oddly fitting that the police then lied about how they had killed Dorner by using an incediary tear gas, known as CS gas, and brazenly told the media that they had not started the fire that consumed the cabin with Dorner inside. It was like Waco redux. The recordings of the police during the siege, however, clearly indicate that they planned to use an incendiary gas, ignite the flammable gas, and burn the cabin down – with Dorner inside.
ABC News reported the text of the police comments during their siege of the cabin where Dorner was hiding: ”Burn the gas. Burn the gas. Burn it down.” The Sheriff of San Bernardino County then lied to the press saying the police had not started the fire.
DORNER AND THE CULTURE OF CORRUPTION
I have exhausted all available means at obtaining my name back. I have attempted all legal court efforts within appeals at the Superior Courts and California Appellate courts. This is my last resort. The LAPD has suppressed the truth and it has now lead to deadly consequences.…
Are you aware [Teresa] Evans has since [been] promoted to Sergeant after kicking Mr. Gettler in the face. Oh, you violated a citizen‘s civil rights? We will promote you.…
Those of you who “go along to get along” have no backbone and destroy the foundation of courage. You are the enablers of those who are guilty of misconduct. You are just as guilty as those who break the code of ethics and oath you swore.…
It is endless the amount of times per week officers arrest an individual, label him a suspect-arrestee-defendant and then before arraignment or trial realize that he is innocent based on evidence. You know what they say when they realize an innocent man just had his life turned upside down? “I guess he should have stayed at home that day he was discovered walking down the street and matching the suspect’s description. Oh well, he appeared to be a dirtbag anyways.” Meanwhile the falsely accused is left to pick up his life, get a new, family, friends, and sense of self worth.
– Extracts from the Christopher Dorner Manifesto (Uncensored)
The Christopher Dorner case sheds much-needed light on the systemic culture of corruption which infects many police departments across the United States. While Dorner’s case directly concerns the notorious Los Angeles Police Department, the very same culture of police corruption can be found in Chicago, New York, and many other American cities. Indeed, the exact same culture of corruption exists in my hometown, the Village of Hoffman Estates (Illinois), where I was subjected to a brutal undercover police attack in August 2006.
The Wikipedia article for police corruptioncontains the following statement with a footnote:
One study of corruption in the Los Angeles Police Department (focusing particularly on the Rampart scandal) proposed that certain forms of police corruption may be the norm, rather than the exception, in American policing.
Indeed, I use the word systemic to describe this culture of police corruption because it relates to and affects the entire system. The culture of police corruption that is exposed in the Dorner case, as in mine, could not exist by itself. It is supported by a corrupt court system and the controlled media, which makes it very hard to fight against. Because many people have not experienced the kind of violent police abuse that is at the center of the Dorner case, it is important to present the basic facts of the case: A mentally ill citizen named Christopher Gettler was allegedly kicked in the face by an abusive officer, Teresa Evans of the L.A.P.D. The following video is Gettler’s testimony about being kicked in the face. The inch-long scar can still clearly be seen beneath Gettler’s left eye.
Video Link - http://youtu.be/nKDMITqKT0M
The Dorner case involves a military veteran from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which complicates the case, but the essential facts of how he got caught up in a case of police abuse are simple. As the Los Angeles Times presents it:
Dorner’s case revolved around a July 28, 2007, call about a man causing a disturbance at the DoubleTree Hotel in San Pedro. When Dorner and his training officer showed up, they found Christopher Gettler. He was uncooperative and threw a punch at one of the officers, prompting Dorner’s training officer, Teresa Evans, to use an electric Taser weapon on him.
Nearly two weeks later, Dorner told a sergeant that Evans had kicked Gettler once in the face and twice in the left shoulder or nearby chest area. Afterward, Dorner said, Evans told him not to include the kicks on the arrest report.
An internal affairs investigation into the allegation concluded the kicks never occurred. Investigators subsequently decided that Dorner had fabricated his account. He was charged with making false accusations.
At the December 2008 Board of Rights hearing, Dorner’s attorney, Randal Quan, conceded that his client should have reported the kicks sooner but told the board that Dorner ultimately did the right thing. He called the case against Dorner “very, very ugly.”
“This officer wasn’t given a fair shake,” Quan said, according to transcripts of the board hearing. “In fact, what’s happening here is this officer is being made a scapegoat.”
At the hearing, Dorner stuck to his story. Evans, he said, kicked Gettler once in the left side of his collarbone lightly with her right boot as they struggled to handcuff him. She kicked him once more forcefully in the same area, Dorner testified, and then much harder in the face, snapping Gettler’s head back. Dorner said he noticed fresh blood on Gettler’s face.
- “Dorner manhunt: conflicting testimony in ex-cop’s firing case,” Los Angeles Times, February 11, 2013
Dorner consequently reported that Evans had kicked Gettler in the face, which meant that Dorner was breaking the Blue Code of Silence which is defined as the unwritten rule among police officers in the United States not to report on another colleague’s errors, misconducts, or crimes. This is the real reason Dorner was fired from the L.A.P.D. He had broken the police “code of silence”, the Mafia-style “omerta” that police across America abide by.
I discovered the same kind of police corruption in Hoffman Estates after I was attacked by three undercover police at my home in August 2006. My first complaints were directed at Clint Herdegen, then Chief of Police, and the village board. What I found, however, was a complete lack of concern or even interest in the facts of the case by the people who should be obliged to respond to such abuses. The Chicago papers that covered the story reported only the police version of the attack without even contacting me. When I attended the village board meeting a few days after the attack the corrupt chief of police, Clint Herdegen, was being given an award. This is how corruption works – the criminals are rewarded for their crimes.
The three officers who were involved in the attack: Timothy Stoy, Michael Barber, and Darin Felgenhauer, are all still on the force and have even been promoted. Chief Herdegen retired at age 50, took his generous Hoffman Estates pension package and went to a new job the same week – as chief of police in Libertyville, Illinois.
Darin Felgenhauer (center) was the “lethal officer” in the TASER attack on Bollyn who was prepared to shoot him if he went berserk. Felgenhauer, who testified in court that Bollyn had committed no crime before he turned to go to his house, has since been promoted to sergeant in Hoffman Estates. On the left is William McLeod, the village president.
Clint Herdegen, the corrupt chief of police behind the attack on Bollyn. To conspire against a citizen as he did with the police force in Hoffman Estates is a federal offense.
When I was arrested and taken away from my home TASERed and handcuffed, I asked what I was being arrested for. The police did not answer because they had not yet conspired and produced the false report in which they falsely charged me with assault and resisting arrest. The police report in my case has several authors, not all of whom are known.
When I was finally able to find a lawyer, Jack Smeaton of Wilmette, and told him that I wanted to challenge the police lies in court, he told me that the police will lie on the stand and the court and jury will believe them – not you. I was, however, unwilling to accept guilt for something I had not done and chose to go to trial, which is the path less trod in Cook County Courts.
In court, it was exactly as Smeaton had said: the police gave each other high fives when they entered and then lied on the stand and presented false testimony and evidence, in spades. Although the three undercover police gave clearly conflicting testimony, they were believed and I was found guilty. The judge, Hyman I. Riebman, refused to allow my evidence of a police conspiracy or expert witness to be presented. (The judge’s son, Elliot Riebman, was defense attorney for the former governor, Rod Blagojevich, who was sentenced to 18 years in prison for talking on the phone with Rahm Emanuel about the appointment of a replacement to the U.S. Senate for the vacated seat of Barack Obama.)
The systemic problem of police corruption only comes to the attention of the public when an egregious case of abuse is caught on camera and shown to the whole world on the Internet. Most cases, however, are not caught on camera or the video evidence is destroyed, which is what happened in my case.
The police should not be allowed to operate as a publicly-funded armed gang that abuses the citizenry it is supposed to serve and protect. Whatever the outcome of the Dorner case, his desperate actions have achieved one thing: they have served to focus public attention on the culture of police corruption in America. In order to rectify this very serious social problem we will need to maintain our focus and understand that the culture of police corruption will continue to infect our communities as long as it is supported by the courts, the political establishment, and the media. We cannot accept that our police departments – and our communities – are ruled by criminal gangs.
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