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CONTENTS  - NOVEMBER 12, 2001

Click. ORANGE COUNTY JUDGE CHARGED WITH CHILD PORNOGRAPHY.

Click. Defendant accuses former Huntington Park colleagues of evidence tampering, on-duty sex.

Click. The Boys of Iwo Jima


ORANGE COUNTY JUDGE CHARGED WITH CHILD PORNOGRAPHY.

Courts: Ronald C. Kline is placed under house detention. ...
By Monte Morin and Jack Leonard, Los Angeles Times, 11/10/01

An Orange County Superior Court Judge was charged Friday with possession of child pornography and placed under house detention at the urging of federal prosecutors, who said he poses a threat to the public.
 
Judge Ronald C. Kline, who is seeking reelection next year, surrendered to authorities and was ordered by a federal judge to wear an electronic monitoring device.
 
Investigators allege in court papers that Kline kept a diary in which he wrote about his sexual attraction to teenage boys and his visits to shopping malls, Little League games and the shower area of an athletic club. ....
 
Kline's surrender follows a search of his Irvine home Tuesday. Investigators said they uncovered five images on computer diskettes of young boys engaging in sexual acts. ....
 
According to court documents, Kline admitted that he sometimes views illegal images on his computer at home. ....
 
In arguing that Kline's contact with the public should be kept at a minimum, assistant U.S. Atty. Deidre Elliot referred to the diary, which investigator found at his home. A customs investigator described the diary in court papers, claiming that Kline wrote about "seeking contact" with boys. ....
 

The above report reminds me of a report a number of years ago where a San Diego judge plead guilty to three counts of child molestation with  three different boys and was fined $150 per count. The single offense rate was less than you would now pay for running a red light at a photo intersection in Los Angeles, which is $270. He even got to keep his position on the bench.
 
Perhaps, now the alleged offense here is taken a little more seriously as criminal conduct and unbecoming of a judge. Are they now raising the standard for judges because of more public attention on the judiciary?
-Ron Branson - Jail for Judges

Ex-Officer's Trial Could Taint Police

Court: Defendant accuses former Huntington Park colleagues of evidence tampering, on-duty sex.

By RICHARD MAROSI
TIMES STAFF WRITER

October 9, 2001

A former Huntington Park police officer will soon face off against his onetime colleagues in a court case so strange it inspired a judge to give some of the law enforcement participants a nickname.

He called the Huntington Park officers a "liars club."

In a case involving two jurisdictions, John Maley of Fountain Valley is facing one count of possessing illegal ammunition in Orange County. But he says Huntington Park officers framed him because they feared he would expose wrongdoing, including alleged on-duty sex with prostitutes. The long-running case is more than just a sordid tale of feuding cops and sexual misadventures. The Huntington Park Police Department, already under investigation for alleged civil rights violations, could face huge liability costs and another blow to its reputation and credibility.

Though a judge has scoffed at many of Maley's claims, he has ruled that some photographs confiscated from Maley's Fountain Valley home disappeared and were possibly destroyed by panicked Huntington Park officers.

"They are a bunch of people running scared, for their jobs, from the City Council, from the press, from investigations by perhaps the FBI, the [Internal Revenue Service]," said Orange County Superior Court Judge Thomas J. Borris last year.

In his ruling, the judge refused to drop the charge against Maley but said the defense could argue at trial that Huntington Park police had destroyed evidence.

Prosecutors are reviewing the case for any evidence of police-related misconduct. Defense attorneys say old cases could be reopened in a Rampart-like review if officers were found to have lied or tampered with evidence.

"It is really outrageous what they did," said Romero Jacinto of the public integrity assurance section of the Los Angeles County public defender's office. "We're going to see if any of their conduct has impacted our cases."

The case against Maley began in April 1998, when Fountain Valley police, concerned that Maley was "paranoid," raided the modest tract home that he shares with his wife and two children.

Fountain Valley officers said they confiscated two shotguns, 11 rifles and 11 handguns, most of them fully loaded, as well as alleged destructive ingredients and espionage literature. Also present at the raid were officers from Huntington Park, a blue-collar city in southeast Los Angeles County.

Maley, who had retired from the Huntington Park police six years earlier, was originally charged with 10 felonies. Most of those counts were either dismissed by judges, citing insufficient evidence, or dropped by prosecutors. It is not clear why Orange County prosecutors dropped other charges.

Maley has tried to get the remaining count--possession of four tracer rounds--dismissed by saying Fountain Valley officers improperly gave Huntington Park police four albums of photographs. Maley says some of the photos disappeared.

Some photos allegedly showed an officer having sex with a woman near a police car and officers cavorting with a scantily clad woman. Another one allegedly showed numerous gun-toting, beer-drinking officers, in a line, exposing themselves while on duty.

Judge Borris agreed that Fountain Valley police improperly gave the evidence to their fellow agency. He said some of the photos--a "powder keg" of embarrassing evidence--were then probably destroyed.

"If this isn't the poster boy for bad faith, I don't know what is," he said. "I am appalled. . . . I cannot express the distaste of what has happened here by means of that Police Department."

But Borris did not dismiss the charge against Maley, mainly because he believed that the officers were trying to protect themselves, not harm his case.

Maley's attorney, Derek Bercher, however, plans to revisit the issue at the trial, scheduled to start this week. Though several photographs disappeared, others remain, and Bercher hopes to undermine the department's credibility.

Some photographs show dancing drag queens and gruesome crime and accident scenes. In one, a murder victim on a gurney--his chest slashed open by a knife--has a sign wedged into his hand saying, "Ventilated Hood."

Another photograph shows officers allegedly mimicking gang behavior by posing in front of a graffiti-covered wall.

Maley, who left the force in 1992, said that he took some of the Polaroid photographs but that others were given to him by officers. Maley, a British-born former Royal Marine and Drug Enforcement Administration agent, portrays himself as a chronicler of misdeeds.

"You always have a few clowns in any department, but once I discovered that these guys are crooks and corrupt, I decided to keep a collection that would be evidence of proof of their improprieties," he said.

Others doubt anything Maley says, calling him a disgruntled ex-cop trying to deflect attention from his own alleged crimes. The judge said the photographs amount to just a strange souvenir collection.

Speaking of Maley and his former colleagues, Borris said: "His credibility is one of the lowest. . . . He is part of the boys in the liars club, Orange County chapter, of the Huntington Park Police Department."

Borris also harshly criticized several Huntington Park officers, right up to Chief Randy E. Narramore, who was questioned about the photographs at last year's hearing.

Narramore, the judge said, gave contradictory answers that were "all over the map." Borris likened the chief to a bumbling TV character.

"He basically says, 'I know nothing,' comparable to . . . Sgt. Klink on 'Hogan's Heroes,' " said the judge, misnaming the television character, Sgt. Schultz, in the 1960s series about a World War II prison camp.

Narramore, in an interview, said that he couldn't comment on the judge's ruling, but that Maley possesses a "demented imagination" that has caused many people "undue heartache."

Narramore is expected to testify at the trial, which attorneys say could last one to two weeks at the courthouse in Westminster.

The case has split the City Council in Huntington Park, where the FBI is still investigating the 72-member department over allegations of police abuse of minorities.

Councilwoman Linda Luz Guevara often mentions the case during meetings in an effort to expose alleged wrongdoing. But Mayor Ric Loya stands by Narramore.

"At this point in time, we're leaning with our chief," he said. "We're all watching it carefully. We feel confident enough that when the whole thing is done, we'll be OK."
 

City Councilwoman Linda Guevara was one of the speakers at JAIL4Judges' November 11, 2000 fundraiser (last year) in Reseda, CA., in which she spoke of this police corruption in her city prior to it being exposed to the public via the news. You heard it first at JAIL4Judges. 
-Ron Branson
J.A.I.L. is the new means of a peaceful revolution in this country.
J.A.I.L. is an acronym for Judicial Accountability Initiative Law
JAIL's very informative website is found at www.jail4judges.org

The Boys of Iwo Jima
By Michael T. Powers © 2001

Each year my video production company is hired to go to Washington, DC with the eighth grade class from Clinton, Wisconsin where I grew up, to videotape their trip. I greatly enjoy visiting our nation's capitol, and each year I take some special memories back with me. This fall's trip was especially memorable.

On the last night of our trip, we stopped at the Iwo Jima memorial. This memorial is the largest bronze statue in the world and depicts one of the most famous photographs in history -- that of the six brave men raising the American flag at the top of Mount Surubachi on the Island of Iwo Jima, Japan during WW II. Over one hundred students and chaperones piled off the buses and headed towards the memorial. I noticed a solitary figure at the base of the statue, and as I got closer he asked, "Where are you guys from?"

I told him that we were from Wisconsin.

"Hey, I'm a Cheesehead, too!  Come gather around, Cheeseheads, and I will tell you a story."

James Bradley just happened to be in Washington, DC to speak at the memorial the following day. He was there that night to say goodnight to his dad, who has since passed away. He was just about to leave when he saw the buses pull up. I videotaped him as he spoke to us, and received his  permission to share what he said from my videotape. It is one thing to tour the incredible monuments filled with history in Washington, DC but it is quite another to get the kind of insight we received that night.

When all had gathered around he reverently began to speak. Here are his words from that night:

"My name is James Bradley and I'm from Antigo, Wisconsin. My dad is on that statue, and I just wrote a book called Flags of Our Fathers which is #5 on the New York Times Best Seller list right now. It is the story of the six boys you see behind me. Six boys raised the flag. The first guy putting the pole in the ground is Harlon Block. Harlon was an all-state football player. He enlisted in the Marine Corps with all the senior members of his football team. They were off to play another type of game, a game called "War."  But it didn't turn out to be a game. Harlon, at the age of twenty-one, died with his intestines in his hands. I don't say that to gross you out; I say that because there are generals who stand in front of this statue and talk about the glory of war. You guys need to know that most of the boys in Iwo Jima were seventeen, eighteen, and nineteen years old.

(He pointed to the statue.)

You see this next guy? That's Rene Gagnon from New Hampshire. If you took Rene's helmet off at the moment this photo was taken, and looked in the webbing of that helmet, you would find a photograph. A photograph of his girlfriend. Rene put that in there for protection, because he was scared. He was eighteen years old. Boys won the battle of Iwo Jima. Boys. Not old men.

The next guy here, the third guy in this tableau, was Sergeant Mike Strank. Mike is my hero. He was the hero of all these guys. They called him the "old man" because he was so old. He was already twenty-four. When Mike would motivate his boys in training camp, he didn't say, "Let's go kill the enemy" or "Let's die for our country." He knew he was talking to little boys. Instead he would say, "You do what I say, and I'll get you home to your mothers."

The last guy on this side of the statue is Ira Hayes, a Pima Indian from Arizona. Ira Hayes walked off Iwo Jima. He went into the White House with my dad. President Truman told him, "You're a hero." He told reporters, "How can I feel like a hero when 250 of my buddies hit the island with me and only twenty-seven of us walked off alive?" So you take your class at school. 250 of you spending a year together having fun, doing everything together. Then all 250 of you hit the beach, but only twenty-seven of your classmates walk off alive. That was Ira Hayes. He had images of horror in his mind. Ira Hayes died dead drunk, face down at the age of thirty-two, ten years after this picture was taken.

The next guy, going around the statue, is Franklin Sousley from Hilltop, Kentucky, a fun-lovin' hillbilly boy. His best friend, who is now 70, told me, "Yeah, you know, we took two cows up on the porch of the Hilltop General Store. Then we strung wire across the stairs so the cows couldn't get down. Then we fed them Epson salts. Those cows crapped all night." Yes, he was a fun-lovin' hillbilly boy. Franklin died on Iwo Jima at the age of nineteen. When the telegram came to tell his mother that he was dead, it went to the Hilltop General Store. A barefoot boy ran that telegram up to his mother's farm. The neighbors could hear her scream all night and into the morning. The neighbors lived a quarter of a mile away.

The next guy, as we continue to go around the statue, is my dad, John Bradley from Antigo, Wisconsin, where I was raised. My dad lived until 1994, but he would never give interviews. When Walter Cronkite's producers, or the New York Times would call, we were trained as little kids to say, "No, I'm sorry sir, my dad's not here. He is in Canada fishing. No, there is no phone there, sir. No, we don't know when he is coming back." My dad never fished or even went to Canada. Usually he was sitting right there at the table eating his Campbell's soup, but we had to tell the press that he was out fishing. He didn't want to talk to the press. You see, my dad didn't see himself as a hero. Everyone thinks these guys are heroes, 'cause they are in a photo and a monument. My dad knew better. He was a medic.  John Bradley from Wisconsin was a caregiver. In Iwo Jima he probably held over 200 boys as they died, and when boys died in Iwo Jima, they writhed and screamed in pain. When I was a little boy, my third grade teacher told me that my dad was a hero. When I went home and told my dad that, he looked at me and said, "I want you always to remember that the heroes of Iwo Jima are the guys who did not come back. DID NOT come back."

So that's the story about six nice young boys. Three died on Iwo Jima, and three came back as national heroes. Overall, 7000 boys died on Iwo Jima in the worst battle in the history of the Marine Corps. My voice is giving out, so I will end here. Thank you for your time."

Suddenly the monument wasn't just a big old piece of metal with a flag sticking out of the top. It came to life before our eyes with the heartfelt words of a son who did indeed have a father who was a hero. Maybe not a hero in his own eyes, but a hero, nonetheless.