Archive for November 16th, 2011

The “Blue Shield” Continues

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

I've posted repeatedly in the past about the double standard when it comes to cops who drive drunk.  See, for example, Guarding the GuardiansThe Blue Cover-Up, The DUI Double Standard, The DUI Double Standard II and The Thin Blue Line

The following news story from a couple of days ago is just another example of this pervasive coverup…..


PCB Officer's DUI Charge Dismissed

Panama City, FL.  Nov. 14  – A DUI case against a former Panama City Beach police officer has been dismissed because no one could legally prosecute the charges before the defendant’s right to a speedy trial expired.

According to statements made at a Nov. 8 hearing, the 14th Judicial Circuit State Attorney’s Office declared a conflict in the DUI case against David Lee Walker in August. As is procedure when a conflict of interest is declared, the prosecutors in Glenn Hess’ office asked Gov. Rick Scott to intervene and appoint another prosecutor to handle the case. The 1st Judicial Circuit was supposed to take over the case, but they did not receive formal notice from the governor’s office in time for an Oct. 31 trial, according to statements at last week’s motion hearing.

Walker’s defense team did not waive the speedy trial requirements under Florida law and showed up Oct. 31 ready to go a trial, officials said. No one showed up to prosecute the case.

“From time to time we would make inquiries with the governor’s office; it was never assigned,” Bob Pell, the head of the misdemeanor division with the 14th Judicial Circuit, said during the Nov. 8 hearing. “I feel that our circuit has done everything we can possibly do to move the case along.”

At the end of the hearing, Judge Joe Grammer dismissed the charges against Walker. Although the case has been dismissed, prosecutors could appeal, officials said. The 1st Judicial Circuit did eventually get official notification from the governor’s office and sent a notice to Grammer.

The notice arrived the day after he dismissed the case, Grammer said.

Walker and another officer repeatedly sought “professional courtesy” from Trooper Wesley Harsey after Harsey stopped Walker for allegedly driving 50 miles per hour on Front Beach Road after leaving the bar on July 21, according to investigative reports. Walker offered to leave his car parked at the scene and take a taxi home, but Harsey told him he should have done that before they left the bar, the reports said.

Walker initially said he had only two beers, but during the conversation, he eventually admitted to drinking eight or nine beers that night, according to the reports. Ultimately, he refused to submit to a breath test, and Walker resigned shortly after the arrest…


"No one showed up to prosecute the case".  Strange how the system just can't seem to get it together when it's a cop facing DUI charges…
 

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