Tag Archive for Virginia

The Real Voter Fraud in Virginia

Governor Terry McAiliffe

President-elect Trump recently alleged massive voter fraud in a number of states, including Virginia, where democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe restored voting rights for more than 67,000 former felons ahead of the November election. While many republicans criticized the move as a blatant attempt to secure votes for his long-time pal, Hillary Clinton, many others praised McAuliffe as a hero for civil rights who was trying to address an historic wrong that specifically targeted African Americans for felony disenfranchisement.

Restoring rights to those who have served their time is the right thing to do, however, the media focused on emotional stories of tearful ex-felons setting foot inside of the ballot box for the first time rather than examine what little practical impact the ability to vote would have in improving their lives. Supporting prisoner re-entry, removing barriers to employment such as occupational licensing requirements, and sending fewer people to jail for victimless crimes in the first place would have a far greater positive effect for improving the lot of ex-offenders.

Additionally, the right to vote in Virginia has even less value once you consider that residents do not even have access to the sort of ballot initiatives that residents in Colorado and elsewhere used to legalize marijuana.

Trump was correct about the existence of voter fraud in Virginia, but not the kind he claimed. The fraud that happened here is that so many voters have been duped into thinking that Terry McAuliffe is some sort of champion for civil rights or criminal justice reform.
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Denied Noodles, Alexandria Cop Gets Taste of Department’s Own Medicine

Alexandria Police Chief Earl "Noodlehead" Cook

In an incident previously covered by Josh Hotchkin, a Noodles & Company employee allegedly refused to provide service to a uniformed officer with the Alexandria Police Department of Virginia on Monday, July 25.

As reported by Fox5DC:

At around 6:30 p.m. Monday evening, a female officer in full uniform walked into the Noodles & Company on Duke St. in Alexandria when she was refused service while waiting in line, according to officials. The cook at the restaurant came out of the kitchen, walked to the cashier and said something in the lines of “you are going to have to take me off the line, because I am not serving that.” The cashier and the cook then exchanged a few words and started laughing at the officer. The officer decided to leave the restaurant when she realized what was happening, called her supervisor.

Instead of going to another restaurant (might I suggest Chick-fil-A?) to get her lunch, the offended cop called her supervisor. Why? To discuss their options for arresting the chef and cashier on bogus contempt of cop charges? To make arrangements for an impromptu regulatory raid? To get talked down from going back in and shooting the place up because she feared for her ego?

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Scenes from an Execution — India Kager Video Released

After 6 months of pressure and an emotional plea from a grieving mother that became a viral video, the Virginia Beach Police Department has finally released the video of their lethal assault on India Kager. The surveillance footage comes from the 7-Eleven where Kager and her boyfriend, Angelo Perry, were shot and killed. The blurry video was released to the public the same day as the report from the prosecutor’s office declaring no charges would be brought against the SWAT team members involved, officers S. Ferreira, K. Ziemer, J. Thorson, and D. Roys, because the shooting was deemed justified.

Kager’s boyfriend (see update below) Angelo Perry was a homicide suspect who, according to a confidential informant, was going to be in Virginia Beach to carry out a hit on an unidentified person. Despite “watching the location of Perry’s phone as it moved south from Maryland toward Virginia Beach (with what? Stingrays?),” and having “surveillance units deployed at different locations throughout the city in an attempt to spot Perry,” it was up to the confidential informant to tip off the cops that Perry was actually in town. The report also states “it was confirmed that Perry was armed,” but not how they knew this prior to the shooting.

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SB 552: the Dawn of Virginia’s Secret Police

We’ve been hearing a lot about criminal justice reform, a movement with support from both republicans and democrats who acknowledge the myriad problems with the huge numbers of people we spend to jail and prison each year, why we send them there, and how we send them there. However, this is a movement that has apparently not reached Virginia, a state whose legislative body seems to be intent on doubling down on costly (in financial and human terms), ineffective, and harmful “tough on crime” bills that undercut government accountability and transparency and attack our civil liberties.

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.

The Virginian-Pilot newspaper reports that this “Secret Police” law would be the first of its kind in the nation. What an ignoble distinction for a state that so proudly refers to itself as a commonwealth, “a state in which the supreme power is vested in the people,” and boasts “Sic Semper Tyrannis (Thus Always to Tyrants)” for a state motto.
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An Open Letter to Governor McAuliffe and Attorney General Herring

Dear Governor McAuliffe and Attorney General Herring;

It’s clear that you want to build a legacy as gun control trailblazers in Virginia. What’s not clear is why you both seem entirely disinterested in adopting or advocating for meaningful control measures for those who are entrusted with guns and the authority to take lives with near-impunity by the government. You can be counted on to stand with the grieving families of gun homicide victims…so long as they are not the victims of police abuse and overreach. In those cases you are nowhere to be found.  The hypocrisy is galling. And telling.

Furthermore, your recent move to end concealed carry permit reciprocity with 25 states targets a population that is known to be much more law-abiding than the general public, and does nothing to increase public safety. According to the Washington Post, the Attorney General’s office “could not say how many people are suspected of crossing into Virginia with concealed weapons to commit crimes office cannot even say how many people are suspected of crossing into Virginia with concealed weapons to commit crimes.”  The fact that you cannot provide the very information that should have informed your move to restrict CHP holders in the state implies that you either did not bother to research this because you knew it was a non-issue, or you did research it and found no evidence that there was an issue. Read more

September 2015 Virginia Police Misconduct Updates

Virginia (State-Wide)

9/23/15
Virginia officials yielded to calls from newspapers and government transparency and police accountability groups by finally releasing the report of the investigation into the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control’s bloody takedown of University of Virginia student, Martese Johnson, back in March.  TL;DR: The Virginia State Police investigated their buddies and found that they did nothing wrong. How long before overzealous ABC secret police agents kill a young person to protect them from underage drinking?
http://www.richmond.com/news/local/government-politics/article_b89c2246-3a07-5075-b18b-4ed70f598e2a.html

Involved Law Enforcement Agency and Personnel:

  • Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control
    • Special Agent Jared B. Miller
    • Special Agent Thomas S. Custer
    • Special Agent John S. Cielakie

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