Warped Blue Line
by R. SCOTT MOXLEY
Thursday, 29 December 2005
Top 10 moments in 2005 OC crime
10. In September, veteran Santa Ana police officer Eric Stephen Rimat receives probation for stealing $25,490 during a two-year period from the Orange County Police Canine Association, a charity that aids the families of fallen officers. Prosecutors also say it’s “in the interest of justice” that they drop additional bigamy charges against the officer because the two women didn’t want him punished. Rimat, who does not acknowledge wrongdoing, blames his legal woes on “stress” and remains on paid leave.
9. Though Theodore Millard calls himself “the victim” and shows no remorse for drunk driving his SUV into a motorcyclist, the Orange County Superior Court judge is sentenced in July to 3 percent of the maximum state prison sentence: 75 days in a private, local jail.
8. Veteran Anaheim police officer Bradley Wagner, 58, is arrested in November for allegedly forcing an undocumented Mexican national to orally please him while on duty—and then threatening deportation if she didn’t agree to regular, future sex. Mitigating factor: Wagner allegedly promised to wear a condom.
7. Anaheim resident Raymond K. Yi, who rates an Orange County sheriff’s badge because he’s Sheriff Mike Carona’s personal tae kwon do instructor, is arrested in August for not playing well with others. While golfing in Chino Hills, prosecutors say, Yi repeatedly hit his ball into a group of fellow golfers, flashed his badge, pulled a gun, asked, “Do you know who I am?” and then threatened to kill them.
6. After a 38-year-old San Clemente man in custody protests that his handcuffs are too tight, OC Jail deputies D. Dumbass, S. Bucktooth and A. Einstein—who’ll remain anonymous due to generous protections afforded them by the state’s Peace Officers Bill of Rights—hood the man, shove his head into a cell door frame, throw him to the floor, punch him, kick his ribs, stomp on his back and legs, bend and twist his arms and wrists, and repeatedly slam his face into the floor. The man, who passed a sobriety blood test before the beating and was never charged with a crime, suffers a concussion, broken ribs, a gash in his leg, an eye contusion, a shattered tooth, lacerations and bruises all over his body, a fractured wrist, and nerve damage to his hand. A civil suit is pending; the officers remain on duty.
5. Following the Weekly’s November exposé, prosecutors decide not to use Larry Harris’ questionable police bloodhound evidence against a 20-year-old Buena Park man accused of carjacking and robbery. Harris’ bloodhound, Trace, ran by the suspect’s house at least twice without stopping but sniffed out the house 65 minutes later—after Harris pointed the dog back in the direction of the man’s home.
4. In February, prosecutors charge David Alex Park, 29, with three felony counts, including sexual battery, after the on-duty Irvine police officer allegedly follows a Captain Cream exotic dancer from work, stops her on a secluded section of Laguna Canyon Road, exposes himself and demands that she fondle him or face a ticket.
3. In October, Sheriff Mike “Bad Opie” Carona tries to explain two suspicious Weekly photos pertaining to his, uh, clearly affectionate relationship with a Russian woman he describes as an “interpreter.” According to the county’s top cop and self-styled Christian conservative, he didn’t remember passionately embracing the woman, but he did recall how the scantily clad woman ended up in his Moscow hotel room wearing his official jacket and a smile. Says Carona through his lawyer, Moscow has a prostitution problem and he loaned the woman his jacket to sneak her into his room.
2. While the rest of the nation’s police forces worry about rapists, murderers and terrorist infiltrators, the Garden Grove Police Department spends 2005 determined to punish Theresa Dang for allegedly stealing a police flashlight during a May protest against the anti-illegal-immigrant Minuteman Project. Three days after Dang complains to the City Council about aggressive police tactics at the protest, the department raids her home looking for the flashlight. Though unsuccessful in their search, dim cops file charges anyway. In December, a jury acquits the Westminster woman, who claims she was the victim of police retaliation.
1. After he shoots an unarmed Hoang Tan Bui in the back during a routine traffic stop in February, Westminster police officer Charles Shinn III chases an understandably frightened, bleeding Bui down the street in his patrol unit, jumps a curb, runs over the man and then, according to a lawsuit, leaves the cruiser on top of the corpse for “several hours.”
Did you see the coverage of the wrong house drive by shooting/murder in Riverside last week?
#4 in the above story surprised me as Irvine prides itself on hiring mature educated police officers. They dont recruit/hire 22yo CJ majors or military veterans. They want guys with masters degrees or non CJ bachelors and life experiance. I guess one freak slipped through the cracks.
Kind of leaves me longing for my old H.S. days in H.B., being harassed by K9 units at parties.