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 MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired. 
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 Post subject: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2009 9:21 pm 
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http://www.startribune.com/local/60472277.html?elr=KArks:DCiUoaW_eEO7UiacyKU7DYaGEP7vDEh7P:DiUs


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Chief Tim Dolan approved the firing of David Garman, according to three well-placed sources. The termination makes Garman the first Strike Force member to lose his job since reports began to percolate this spring about improper seizures of property and other alleged misconduct by the now-disbanded unit.

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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2009 10:58 pm 
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One down...and he won't be the last.


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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 5:40 am 
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Bizarre story -- what, from the news story -- does it appear that Garmin did wrong? I don't think it's at all clear, other than that it was using a cell phone that wasn't his, maybe.

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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 7:16 am 
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I way I read it is that he was trying to cover for another officer who was using the phones. He was fired for the cover up.

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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 7:21 am 
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joelr wrote:
Bizarre story -- what, from the news story -- does it appear that Garmin did wrong? I don't think it's at all clear, other than that it was using a cell phone that wasn't his, maybe.


From part of the article:

Quote:
. . .the Minneapolis Police Department quietly fired an officer for his role in the seizure of cell phones during a Strike Force raid this year.


I gather from that bit that the officer was probably making a habit of relieving suspected gang members, and undoubtedly non-gang members as well, of their cell phones and they disbursing them, probably for a financial consideration.


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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 7:51 am 
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Look!

Over here!

I'm waving something shiny!

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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:19 am 
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Bingo.

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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:33 am 
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From the article.


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An internal affairs investigation found evidence that Garman and the two officers helped cover up the cell phone use, the sources said.


Emphasis mine. 8)

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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 9:07 am 
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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 1:58 pm 
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It's easy to pass judgement on people you don't know, but when the person being accused is someone you have know for years, it's a lot harder to swallow the story.

I've known Dave Garman for over 10 years (he and I served in the National Guard together) and I personally don't buy it. He always came across to me as a dedicated, professional officer. He has done a lot of dangerous and demanding undercover work and taken some very dangerous people off the streets. He almost got killed making an arrest in 2000. I just don't buy it.

Based on what I read in the paper, there is an allegation that he helped cover up another officer's use of a seized cell phone. This can be pretty nebulous; the mere fact that he "should have known" the other officer was using the phone could have brought him under fire.

It has also been my experience in internal investigations that the first officer to invoke his rights usually gets fired on the spot. This public firing is then used as leverage against the other subjects in the investigation - people start saying what the investigators want to hear in the hopes of keeping their jobs. I've seen that happen more than once.

I smell a witch hunt.


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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 2:04 pm 
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I think he certainly deserves due process, and expect that he'll get it. He's got his full rights under the preposterously generous MPD contract, after all, which makes it very difficult to fire even the worst cops, unless they've been caught dirty. And, even then, it's not easy.

That said, I've not heard that he was one of the very few officers to come forward to Luger and Egelhof to talk about the ongoing corruption and tolerance thereof at the MGSF, so perhaps he's not quite as clean as you'd like him to be.

As to the MGSF, it was a screwup -- so much so that even Commissioner Campion, one of its strongest defenders until the maskirovka started to fall apart, has had to admit that.

I don't know Garmin. Maybe he was not merely one of the cops who didn't steal, or who guarded the door while others did, but actually came forward to turn in the crooks and thieves. Maybe. If so, he wouldn't be the first whistleblower who was hung out to dry. On the other hand, as far as we know, the only cop on the MGSF who did try to clean things up was Omodt. Maybe Garmin's the second; I dunno.

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 Post subject: Re: MPD Gang Strike Force Officer fired.
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 2:09 pm 
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Oh, and as far as officers being fired for exercising their rights -- as they, obviously have the right to do -- apparently not one of the Metro area chiefs, including Garmin's top boss, Dolan, ordered their subordinates to cooperate fully with the Luger investigation.

There is a procedure for that, where a police officer can be ordered to report truthfully, and in detail -- and where any criminal admissions cannot be used against him (which satisfies the 5th Amendment requirement).

He can, however, be subject to administrative discipline, up to and including termination and loss of pension, for failing to report truthfully and completely, and is subject, as I understand it, to prosecution for perjury for any material falsehoods.

Yesterday, at the MGSF hearing, one representative busied himself spinning fanciful and complicated explanations for why none of the metro-area chiefs have ordered their cops to cooperate with the investigation. I think the best explanation is the simplest one: they don't want that rock to be turned over any more than it has been, and are doing their best to throw as few cops as possible under the bus.

Garmin's just the first. There will be more. Hard to see how, for example, Heimerl can come out of this intact.

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