Posted: 3/14/2001 1:04:37 PM EDT
Officer Charged in Break-In
.c The Associated Press
BALTIMORE (AP) - A city police officer has been arrested for allegedly breaking into the department's internal affairs office and stealing files implicating a fellow officer under investigation.
Joseph P. Comma, 33, was indicted Monday on charges of burglary, theft and malicious destruction of property in the Dec. 24 break-in. He was held on $50,000 bail.
During the robbery, evidence - including photographs and negatives - against Officer Brian Sewell was stolen.
The internal affairs unit had been investigating Sewell for allegedly planting drugs on a man and arresting him for a drug-related offense. The case was dropped in January when the city said there was no proof without the files.
Comma, a nine-year veteran of the force, was involved in the Sewell investigation, city police spokeswoman Ragina C. Averella said.
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evidence - including photographs and negatives - against Officer Brian Sewell was stolen.
The internal affairs unit had been investigating Sewell for allegedly planting drugs on a man and arresting him for a drug-related offense.
What an idiot! They have him on camera planting drugs on a suspect?
This guy watched too many movies becuase thats not even the way its done.
Say I want to wrongfully arrest Imbroglio for drug posession. I dont actually put the drugs in his pocket. I just pull him over, cuff him and take him to jail. I tell the booking officer his charges and they lock him up. at the end of my shift I write a crime report in which i say after receiving consent to search i found a bindle of Methamphetamine in his pocket. Then i use some meth confiscated in a drug raid and put it in an evidence locker under Imbroglios case number. The first time Imbroglio even finds out why he was arrested is at his arraignment and he never see's the drugs until trial.
Only in the movies are the drugs ever brought into contact with the framed suspect on the street. Judges know this and realise immediately that a suspect is lying if he says "yes, the drugs were in my pocket but somebody planted them there". A better response is "I have never seen those before today".
I do not plant evidence on suspects, but I have enough common sense to know the right way to do it. Also Imbroglio is clearly not a Methamphetamine user.
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