A Fairfax County judge accepted a plea deal for Adam Torres today, meaning the killer cop will be released from jail on June 29th, after serving only 10 months for the murder of unarmed John Geer on August 29, 2013.
Torres, a former officer with the Fairfax County Police Department, shot and killed John Geer without provocation as Geer stood with his empty hands up above his head in the doorway of his own home. Police had been called to the house by Geer’s girlfriend, who had reported he was throwing her belongings out on the front lawn after she had announced she was leaving him and taking their teenage daughters with her.
When Torres was arrested last August and held without bond pending his second degree murder trial for killing John Geer, many speculated that this would likely be the only jail time Torres would serve for his crime. A sweetheart deal offered by Commonwealth’s Attorney Ray Morrogh ensured that would be the case.
While some might feel encouraged by the fact that the public safety committee has already met more times in the past six months than it did in the previous four years (before October, the last meeting had been in June, 2011), it’s obvious that the county is just putting on an extended dog and pony show to give the appearance of taking action, while doing precious little to address long-standing deficiencies with the police department and proper oversight of it by the Board of Supervisors. Read more
On August 29, 2013, Fairfax County police officer Adam Torres shot and killed John Geer as he stood in his own doorway, speaking calmly with Officer Rodney Barnes and the other officers who had responded to Geer’s townhouse 40 minutes earlier. Geer’s partner, Maura Harrington, had called 911 because Geer was distraught over her announcement that she was moving out and taking their two teenage daughters with her, and was tossing furniture and personal effects outside onto the lawn.
Thanks to a plea deal, Torres will almost certainly be home enjoying his freedom and the love of his family when John Geer’s family marks the third anniversary of their loss this coming August; Commonwealth’s Attorney Ray Morrogh has accepted a plea deal for involuntary manslaughter with a sentence of 12 months. Torres has already spent 8 months in county lockup as he has been held without bond since the day he was charged.
One of the worst examples of this is Senate Bill 552, which aims to exempt the “names, positions, job classifications, and other identifying personal information” from being released under Virginia’s Freedom of Information Act. This bill has already been approved by the Virginia Senate, and if the Virginia House of Delegates passes it, it’s likely Governor McAuliffe will happily sign it into law, based on his previous actions regarding law enforcement and release of information.
Written by: Nathan Cox Edited by Meg McLain & Chris Staples
On Memorial Day weekend,May 26th, I was coming home from a side-job I had picked up. Quickly noticed that Interstate 295 was being HEAVILY Policed by State Troopers. Here is my initial CELL PHONE Video):
“I passed 3 state troopers just 50 meters from the Pole Green Road Exit on 295. They were conducting a traffic stop, funny thing was, 2 of them were conducting the stop, while a third was on the opposite shoulder. As I drove by one of the cops stared me, or my vehicle down. The next thing I knew one of those cops came up fast behind me while I was still on the phone. She moved over the adjacent lane and proceeded to pass me, just enough to see my State Inspection sticker which expired March 1. Then she pulled behind me and blue lighted me. She came up to my door, opened the door and aggressively asked to get out of the car. After I complied and stepped out of my car, she had her hands all over me trying to prevent me from recording her. After I signed the tickets she claimed my muffler sounded loud (it’s a stock muffler on a 08 civic Si). As I tried to capture some video of all the cruisers that came to the scene, she threatened me with a citation for being a “pedestrian on the highway” you can see that in the next video. 3 more cops came to the scene. The entire stop was not caught on MY phone because one of the male cops turned my phone upside down when they noticed it filming. I’m hoping to get the dashboard cam via FOIA after the criminal charges are dealt with.”
After going to court about this, I was able to get the inspection sticker citation dismissed but was found “guilty” on the charge “Failure to Display Front License Plate”. Following these court proceedings over these charges, I filed an official complaint with the Virginia State Police concerning the aggressive nature of State Trooper McKenney. I also filed a Freedom Of Information Act Request in hopes to obtain Trooper McKenney’s Dashboard Camera, as well as any other communication about me via, phone, text, email and radio. Also, I tried to recover previous complaints Trooper McKenney may have received, but was denied that request.
Approximately August 22nd I received the FOIA Request Package from the Virginia State Police. After reviewing the information we received, being the Dashboard Camera and text messages that was sent to/received from McKenney validated my account of what happened and provides enough evidence that could make a case for a 4th Amendment Rights Violation. If you have not yet seen MY video of the traffic stop yet, you can watchthe video here and you will notice at the 7:27 mark someone violates my 4th Amendment Rights by trespassing against my property (My Phone). As well as a short clip here of trying to get footage of the cop cars after recovering my phone, she then threatened to cite me for “being a pedestrian on a highway”. What you’ve been waiting for – State Trooper McKenney’s Dashboard Camera: Read more
If you asked him "Peace or Violence?", he'd choose peace every time. ~Brent, Brandon's brother
Around 7:30pm, Aug 16, Marine Veteran Brandon J. Raub was taken into custody by Chesterfield County Police accompanied by several FBI and Secret Service agents. He was arrested without being charged or being read his rights; and was transported to the police station to be processed, then taken to the John Randolph Medical Center in Hopewell, VA, where he is currently being held in the psychiatric ward.
On December 26th, 2011 at approximately 9:15am, one of your deputies, specifically, “L.T Norman” Badge # 0720 used the threat of force to pull me over for running a red light. I am a staunch advocate for peace, non-violence, the Non-aggression Principle and Voluntaryism. Under stress, protest and duress I pulled my vehicle over, in fear that my well-being would be jeopardized if I didn’t comply with the man with a badge and a gun; flashing his lights at me. I asked public servant “Norman”, if he could tell me what actual crime I committed and if he could identify a victim. I clearly did not harm anyone, as it would go against my morals and principles I stand on. You can watch the video of me asking him questions at this web address (which I’m assuming you’ve already seen):
I took a look at your departments “Crime Statistics” and unfortunately there was no mention of traffic violations, which doesn’t surprise me; because without a doubt those numbers would dominate any other category. It saddens me that you and your officers have decided not to follow through with the oaths you’ve sworn, failing your oath; that being to protect and defend the United States Constitution. I too took that same oath, and although I am no longer serving in the army, I perpetually keep that oath. Below are statistics I pulled from your own website. “Narcotics Violations” comes in 3rd place (that’s excluding the traffic violations statistics your department has conveniently left out.)
It greatly concerns me that your department, based off your own statistics, seem to have a priority of harassing, extorting and caging peaceful people. People that pose no threat to anyone’s life, liberty or property. I now have a coerced appointment with a man in a robe who’s paid by the same people that pay for your department’s salary, as well as the prosecution. All of you people are on the same team, so-to-speak, so how can I expect a fair trial/hearing?
I am also aware of the electronics ban policy your department enforces at the courthouse, which is a violation of the public’s right to keep an electronic record of their own court proceedings. I’m informing you now, that I plan on recording my proceedings because I have a right to. I have a right to record on public grounds and especially public servants. Attached to this letter is a Virginia statute that certifies what I’m trying to convey to you. Which leads me to my next point, I don’t know how you or anyone in your department can justify breaking the “laws” that you claim is your job to enforce. Your badge sir, does not grant you extra rights. If I get arrested by one of your deputies for practicing my legal right to record my proceedings, I will follow up with a civil lawsuit after the criminal charges are dealt with.
Because of the firm belief I hold regarding the usurpation of freedom by the hands of those sworn to protect it, I will not be accepting any “plea” of guilt. I have committed no crime, as a crime requires an identifiable victim. You may choose to move forward, and attempt to demonize my entirely peaceful behaviors as “crimes” in a court of law; however, the time and tax-payer money you will waste in this unnecessary procedure will not make anyone safer, nor will it restore any kind of broken peace. If restoring the peace is the job of a police officer (once known as “Peace Officer”), I suggest you reexamine the actions of your officers, as they seem to be counter-productive to your goals.
I want you to be aware that every conversation I have with the police, or any public official will always be recorded, usually video, but at the very least audio. This is because I believe it’s the only way to protect myself and to hold public servants accountable and transparent. In saying that, I fully intend on publishing this letter on the internet. You can expect a crowd of supporters at my proceeding. Lastly, I wanted to let you personally know, that I do not want, need or consent to any of the “services” your department offers; especially I do not want, need, or consent to your protection.
March 17th, 2011 I had witnessed my second “sobriety check-point” within in matter of 6 days in my town, of Mechanicsville (within Hanover County). The first checkpoint I witnessed, I was leaving work at around 10:30pm on March 11th.. I noticed the checkpoint at the intersection just adjacent to the shopping center where my work is. I couldn’t believe my eyes. It was the first check point I had seen since living in the county for 17 years. I didn’t get caught in it, because it was in the opposite side of the road. So I ended up making a quick right and parked in the shopping center to capture some video and commentary of the scene, you can watch that here (includes encounter with police)”
However this blog is not about that police check point.. it’s about the check point I witnessed just 6 days after the one mentioned above. I was coming home from a movie in Richmond.. it was early only around 8:30pm (St. Patricks Day evening). As I was about 2 miles from my County line, on Mechanicsville Trnpk, I was nearing the county line which first requires me to go up a steep hill.. then down the same hill before a long straight-away over a swamp lands. As SOON as I hit the crest of the hill and started down ward.. I noticed something going on. Traffic was backed up 1/4 of a mile atleast.. I didn’t see ANY blue lights.. but I could see tons of cop cars and VDOT equipment, cordoning off the lanes down to one lane. I quickly realized it was a massive check point.. I couldn’t believe it… As I was approaching the sign that said “Sobriety Roadcheck ahead: Prepare to stop Henrico Police I noticed a cop car in the median, facing the direction I was going with no lights on – my assumption was he was regulating “squirters”. I took a picture of the traffic jam, and the check point sign, and then as I passed the sign I maneuvered my car though the traffic cones that had been placed and made a u-turn. I was shocked to see I did not get pulled over by the cops, for which later, after talking with Henrico Police Internal Affairs is supposedly “illegal” to do.
So I went home and made it home successfully but not before immediately facebooking about the checkpoint. I was furious and sick to my stomach – two things that fire me up quick 1) Illegal Wars 2) The Police State. I was determined to do some Cop Block‘ing! I was home for a matter of minutes before I ran down do CVS to pick up some sign making materials. I made a sign with glitter paint that said “Police Ahead” and another one that said, “Do Not Consent”. I grabbed cameras, flashlights, my glock 26 and my signs and headed back to the check point. I parked my car and proceeded to start signwaving at around 10pm. I was standing in the road, in the direction that people would get caught up in the check point, about 1/8th – 1/4th of a mile from the top of the hill where you at that point would see the check point. There IS, one last chance to make a U-Turn at the very top of that hill.
So I sign-waved, about 30-45 minutes into it, a cop flashing his blue lights came up from the opposite direction and made a u-turn where I was posted up and sorta blocked off the road while he questioned me from his car. I got about half of that encounter on videoAbout 20-30 minutes after that encounter, with the cop who never ID’ed himself.. another cop (quite possibly the same one) came and parked his car in the parking lot I was standing in front of by the road. He immediately got out of his car and whipped out his cell-phone and began what appeared to be shooting video. As you’ll see in the video, he never ID’ed himself either.
30 minutes after that encounter with the cop, a buddy of mine finally met up with me to help me sign wave and shoot video. We walked over to the top of the hill where we could seee the checkpoint at around 12:20am. We shot some video recapping the situation and noticed after we shot the video they were taking down the roadblock. I’m not sure if we had anything to do with it or not. But I DO know we had a dozen or two cars honk (in support), wave, thumbs up, and even turn around before they made it to the checkpoint and even some thank you’s.
I’m disgusted at the police state we live in. I did what I did to raise awareness and to educate people of their rights. The Police have no authority over me. I own & govern myself and take responsibility for my actions. Just because they have swore an oath to do X,Y,Z.. doesn’t mean they have additional rights as I do, or are immune to the law. We’ve got to not only educate ordinary citizens of their rights when encountered by cops, but we need to try, and educated cops of what their job is supposed to be! USE DISCERNMENT in what laws you enforce! Do NOT enforce “crimes” in which there is NO victim, “No Victim, No Crime.”