Police versus police standoff ends peacefully – go figure

The difference between being a white police officer pointing a gun versus being a black man pointing a gun: compare the results of former police officer David James Vitrella’s stand off with Houston SWAT with the death of Reginald Sumbler this past August.

Vitrella was not killed by the shots fired by multiple police officers when he pointed a gun at them. Reginald Sumbler was. Vitrella had broken in and held his wife hostage. Reginald Sumbler had called to report that he was suicidal and needed help.

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Filed under Corruption, Police Shootings, Reginald Sumbler, SWAT



Join Houston Copwatch and the October 22 Coalition this coming Monday night, October 22, at 6:30pm at Bohemeos Cafe: 708 Telephone Rd in the East End for an evening event to mark the National Day Against Police Brutality.



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Ronald Gene Taylor: Innocent but found Guilty by HPD Crime Lab

Ronald Gene Taylor was found guilty of rape in 1993. No semen was found by HPD Crime Lab on the sheet used as evidence, making the only evidence against him the eyewitness identification by the victim and the fact that he lived near by.

A recent test of the same sheet found that there was in fact semen on the sheet linking the rape to a sexual offender that is already serving time in a Texas prison.

Harris County District Attorney’s Office is working for Ronald Gene Taylor’s release now that this evidence has come to light.

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Filed under Court Cases, Crime Lab

Overtime to the Tune of $24 Million

Houston Police Officers will now be able to work more hours of overtime, sometimes partnering up in patrol cars rather than riding alone and waiting for back up.

What dangers could this pose to the public? Tired, overworked, disillusioned police officers paired together. Double the pain, double the hours, all with your generous tax donations!

Rather than endangering the public, couldn’t HPD put this money to use in more thorough training of the officers? If you had to fund the HPD, what type of program would you like to see?

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Filed under Police Protocols

HPD SWAT Surrrounds a 74 Year Old Woman

Welcome to Houston.

We have a culture of self protection and second amendment rights in Houston. Is it surprising that a 74 year old woman would have a  gun? Is it surprising that a 74 year old woman might also be suffering from dementia?

In comes the HPD SWAT team to save the day. After being seen with a pistol in her hand, neighbors quickly called SWAT on the elderly woman. SWAT team negotiated with the woman to surrender after watching her sweep her apartment and listening to her on the phone “ramble about various subjects”.

Another example of excessive force brought to you by HPD.

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Filed under Police Protocols, SWAT

Acre Homes Homicides and the Coming Police State

Chief Hurtt is going to add a stronger police presence to Acre Homes in an attempt to find a suspect responsible for the deaths of multiple young women in the course of one week.  Whether the intimidating police force will solve a murder or round up suspects through racial and economic profiling remains to be seen.

Mayor White claimed that much has already been done for Acre Homes in regards to the homicides, citing the clearing of lots, a reduction in homicides since last year, and the removal of trash.

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Missouri City Police’s Hitman Husband Given New Trial

Robert Fratta, previously a Missouri police officer who had his wife killed by a hit man, has been given a new trial due to an inconsistency in the gunman’s confession – namely, whether or not he was allowed his right to an attorney before his confession. The police officer had been sentenced to death, but has now been given a trial by a federal judge.

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Filed under Corruption, Court Cases, Regional