In the News 2018-10-23T01:21:44+00:00

In the News

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Follow-up Story to My AZ Lawyers client claims Police used excessive force durning an arrest.*

In early September, 2018, a woman was pulled over by police in Goodyear, Arizona and claimed the officer used force that was unjustified. After making an illegal U-turn, an officer discovered Renee Armenta was driving with a suspended license and pulled her over. The officer told Armenta she was under arrest and asked her to get out of the car.

A bystander who took a video of the incident shows the officer grabbing Armenta by the arm and punching her. An outside agency did a review and found that the use of force exhibited by the Goodyear police officer in the video was justified.

The officer believed that Armenta reached behind her back in the vehicle, possibly for a weapon. This move caused him to protect himself from a possible attack.

After reviewing the officer’s actions, the Surprise Police Department found that he “acted appropriately and within department policy and procedure.”

Anthony Ramirez, an attorney at My AZ Lawyers, was not surprised by the decision. Not because it was an appropriate finding, but because it is consistent with other findings that are common among a small law enforcement community. Ramirez stated, “In some circumstances, these officers were very close with one another, they know each other.”

Armenta’s attorney’s view was not shared with a use of force consultant to law enforcement agencies, Lon Bartel. Bartel states that often, officers are harder on each other, as they know the rules and functions. They just don’t give another officer “a pass.”

Ramirez, however, also cited a different case involving a Mesa police officer. The case involving a use of force investigation also showed similar results. After an outside investigation by the Scottsdale police, it too recommended the officer’s actions were justified.


My AZ Lawyers client claims Police used excessive force durning an arrest.*

 

Anthony Ramirez, My AZ Lawyers Criminal Defense Attorney, makes a statement that they will be making sure the use of force by Goodyear police was reasonable.

*Source: “Attorney For Woman at Center of Controversial Goodyear Arrest Speaks Out.” ABC 15 Arizona. 12, Sept. 2018. Web. 14 Sept. 2018

Arizona Woman Speaks Out After She is Dragged From Her Car by Police  – Possible Civil Law Suit*

 

Renee Armenta, a resident of Avondale, Arizona, claims she was punched in the face and dragged out of her car by a Goodyear police officer during an apparent routine traffic stop. The woman spoke to reporters and stated that the officer who pulled her over never told her why he was making the stop. Next, she said the officer ordered her to get out of her car. He later grabbed her arm. According to Armenta, the officer punched her, pulled her, and drew his gun. Terrified, she claims she did not know what was happening. 

A video of the incident, taken by a bystander who witnessed it, was posted on social media showing Armenta being punched, yanked from her car, and drug on the ground. Also, the video shows an officer pulling a weapon and pointing it at the passenger, who stepped out of the car.  John Charlie Moreno Aguilar of Phoenix, was the passenger who was suspected of possession of drug paraphernalia.

The officer initially reported that he saw Armenta reach for something. Armenta denies reaching near her back. My AZ Lawyers attorney Anthony Ramirez is representing Armenta. He commented that the incident, which was posted online, was disturbing to him. Ramirez observed from the video that the officer went “too far way too fast.” A former police officer in Washington, D.C., Ramirez questions the officer’s claim that there was fear of an “imminent assault” by Armenta. 

*Source: “Woman Punched by Goodyear Officer Speaks Out; Attorney Threatens Possible Civil Suit.”  Vandell, Perry. Arizona Republic. AZ Central. 11 Sept. 2018. Web. 16 Sept. 2018.

Ramirez will research wether or not the officer’s actions were legal. A civil suit against the city and the officer may be pursued. Armenia was taken to a hospital and was treated for a head injury. In his further examination of the case, Ramirez plans to request the body camera footage and police report. This evidence may offer more details on what happened during the traffic stop. 

 

According to a statement by Goodyear police, a Goodyear officer made a motor vehicle stop. The driver had a suspended driver’s license and was told she was being placed under arrest. The driver, Armenta, then retreated. The statement also mentions that public safety is a top priority of the Goodyear Police Department, and a passerby may not understand the full context of the situation or conflict. 

Armenta is facing charges of resisting arrest, possession of marijuana, drug paraphernalia, and driving without a license.  The investigation into the officer’s actions has been given to the Surprise Police Department. The case will be heard in Maricopa County Superior Court on September 20, 2018. Goodyear police stated that the investigation Into the incident was given to Surprise police in the interest of “transparency” and “maintaining the public’s trust.”

*Source: “Woman Punched by Goodyear Officer Speaks Out; Attorney Threatens Possible Civil Suit.”  Vandell, Perry. Arizona Republic. AZ Central. 11 Sept. 2018. Web. 16 Sept. 2018

 My AZ Lawyers’ Client claims Mesa Police of Excessive Force and Using Handcuffs as a Weapon*

At a press conference held by My AZ Lawyers, attorney Anthony Ramirez revealed the video of his client’s arrest. After calling 911 to report a break in, the Mesa man claims that Mesa police officers not only used excessive force upon his arrest, but also that they used handcuffs as weapons.

*Source: “New Mesa Police Bodycam Released Amid Excessive Force Allegations.” KYMA. 21 June 2018. Web. 23 June 2018.

Mesa Police Officers Accused of Ignoring Requests During an Arrest* and Using Handcuffs as Weapons on a Mesa Man*

Mesa Police Department is under scrutiny by the community after recent officer involved violent arrests in the past several weeks. A Mesa man claims that Mesa police ignored his requests for help as he was being detained.

Terrence Kirkpatrick says he called the police for a breaking and entering concern in his apartment in November 2017. A video shows an exchange between himself and the police that took place.  Kirkpatrick is claiming that the officers used excessive force when handcuffing him. Mesa Police are once again facing accusations of excessive force. This time, it is how officers used handcuffs on a Mesa man.

Anthony Ramirez, attorney at My AZ Lawyers, held a pair of handcuffs in his hand and explained, “These are restraint devices. These are not weapons. These are meant to keep somebody restrained. The field training officer told Mr. Kirkpatrick, ‘No, they are supposed to hurt.'”

My AZ Lawyers attorney Mr. Ramirez released the body camera footage from the Mesa Police Department which showed Kirkpatrick, his client, being arrested.

Late Tuesday, Mesa attorney Anthony Ramirez released body camera footage from the Mesa Police Department, showing his client, 30-year-old Terrence Kirkpatrick, getting arrested. The video footage shows two officers in Kirkpatrick’s apartment. The officers command Kirkpatrick get up.

“Dude, my [expletive] wrists hurt,” stated Kirkpatrick, in the video.

“Yeah, it’s supposed to,” the officer shouted. “You want to fight us? You think we are going to put those on lightly?”

“Dude, I’m not fighting y’all,” replied Kirkpatrick.

“Stay right there, DO NOT MOVE!” shouted the officers.

*”Man Accuses Mesa Police Officers of Ignoring Requests During a Painful Arrest.” Fox 10 Staff. Fox 10 News. 19 June 2018. Web. 20 June 2018.
**”Mesa PD Accused of Using Handcuffs as ‘Weapons’ on Man in November Incident.” Ciletti, Nick.  ABC 15 Arizona. 19 June 2018. Web. 20 June 2018.

Presunto uso de fuerza excesiva por agentes de Mesa*

 *”Presunto Uso de Fuerza Excesiva por Agentes de Mesa.” Telemundo. NBC Universal. 19 June 2018. Web. 20 June 2018.

Protest for Black Lives Matter outside Mesa Police Department*

Recent incidents involving Mesa police officers using force instigated a protest. The protest was organized by members of Black Lives Matter Arizona. Numerous Mesa residents attended and participated in the rally. Mesa residents were upset with the footage recently released by Mesa police. The video and story gained national attention, as it showed an officer repeatedly hitting and keening a man, and pulling him to the ground.

Once people gathered in front of the Mesa police headquarters in downtown Mesa, they then hit the streets protesting down Main Street and towards the city of Mesa City Council Chambers.

Members of the protest were followed by Mesa police officers on bikes, and officers in SUVs blocked off roads ahead of the crowd of people.  Seven police officers have been pup on administrative leave while the incident is investigates.

In the video below, Anthony Ramirez, a Mesa attorney for My AZ Lawyers and a former police officer, speaks about Mesa Police Department at a protest on June 8, 2018. Nathan J. Fish, The Republic | azcentral.com 

*Source: “Protesters rally at Mesa Police Department; Call for Change.” Fish, Nathan J. The Republic | azcentral.com. 8 June 2018. Web. 12 June 2018


A PCSD Corrections officer faces charges of aggravated assault against an incapacitated victim for allegedly hitting a handcuffed teen in custody.

In the video above*, KGUN9 news covers the story.  MY AZ LAWYERS attorney Anthony Ramirez comments on the case.

*KGUN9. “ONLY on KGUN9: Family of Teen Allegedly Hit By PCSD Officer Speaks.” Online video clip. YouTube. Youtube, 22 September 2017. Web. 30 September 2017.

According to a KGUN9 news report**, in Tucson, Arizona, the family of a teen who claims he was hit by a Pima County corrections officer while handcuffed is suing the Pima County Sheriff’s Department. The incident occurred in May, 2017, and according to the department, several inmates got into a fight. Officer Bradley Kerby intervened, and after the fight, one of the teens waiting for medical treatment, allegedly made vulgar comments to officers. This is when Officer Kerby allegedly hit the teen several times. Kerby has been fired, but the family thinks that is not enough. PCSD is conducting its own investigation. The teen was serving time for robbery. Kerby has been indicted for aggravated assault on the teen.

**Alexa Liacko. “Family of Handcuffed Teen Allegedly Hit By Correction Officer Sues”. KGUN9. 22 September, 2017. Web. 30 September 2017

 

 


 

NOT GUILTY VERDICT :  MY AZ LAWYERS Attorney Anthony Ramirez represented the rights of Damion Williams and produced a defense that freed the Jamaican Man.

 

Are We Responsible For What’s Going On in Our Friend’s Homes?

In the video above: Man freed after being arrested at home raided by law enforcement.* My AZ Lawyers attorney Anthony Ramirez defends Damion Williams in trial and gets a not guilty verdict.  Damion Williams was in jail for more than a year working to prove his innocence.

 

In the video above: Man freed after being arrested at home raided by law enforcement* *My AZ Lawyers client Damion Williams receives a not guilty verdict from a jury after spending over a year in an Arizona jail accused of a drug crime in Phoenix.

Damion Williams: A Not guilty Verdict Frees a Jamaican Man Arrested in Drug Raid Almost One Year Ago***

Damion Williams, a Jamaican national, visited Phoenix for a vacation more than a year ago. Then, he claimed he was caught up in a drug crime of which he had no knowledge. When Williams arrived in Phoenix, he went to a friend’s house to spend the night. According to police, that friend had a significant amount of marijuana in a closet.

Williams stated he was sleeping on the couch when the SWAT team stormed in the house. A search warrant and SWAT raid uncovered 60 pounds of marijuana. Williams was in the house during this raid and was arrested. Williams said he spent more than 420 days behind bars waiting for a trial to prove his innocence. “In Arizona, there is a law – it’s the mere presence defense,” Williams’ lawyer Anthony Ramirez with My AZ Lawyers explained. “And he literally was just in the home without any knowledge of what was going on.”

Williams experienced his first day of freedom after winning a not guilty verdict in court. An ABC15 reporter asked My AZ Lawyers Attorney Ramirez is there was anything anyone can do to prevent a similar situation from happening to them. Ramirez said, unfortunately not really. He said, you cannot really be expected to check through your friend’s house before hanging out. His best advice: just make sure you have better friends.

*ABC15 Arizona. “Man from Jamaica freed after more than a year behind bars.” Online video clip. YouTube. Youtube, 8 July 2017. Web. 9 July 2017.

**ABC15 Arizona. “Man freed after being arrested at home raided by law enforcement.” Online video clip. YouTube. Youtube, 8 July 2017. Web. 9 July 2017.

***Thompson, Megan. “Damion Williams Update: Not Guilty Verdict Frees Jamaican Man Arrested In Drug Raid. ABC15, 8 July 2017. Web. 9 July 2017.

 


In the News

My AZ Lawyers experienced attorneys are trusted and dedicated to serving even the highest profile cases in Arizona.

 

Above:  ABC15 Arizona news broadcast. “Family Questions Surprise Police Shooting.” * My AZ Lawyers Anthony Ramirez is representing the family of Derek Adame.

Family Fights Back After a Surprise, Arizona police shooting killed Derek Adame **

Because of new police body camera footage, a police shooting from last year in Surprise, Arizona is resurfacing. The body camera shows what happened in the shooting incident on November 26, 2016. In this incident in November, police were called after receiving reports about a suspicious car. When Surprise police arrived, they said Derek Adame (20), became combative and tried to drive away. According to the police report, the officer claimed he was dragged before he fired shots at Adame.

What the body camera shows, is two officers surrounding Adame’s car, and officers are confirming the license plate is indicating the car is stolen. One officer approaches Adame’s passenger side door and orders him to put his hands up. Then, the officer gets into the car and shots can be heard seconds later. The car Adame is driving drags the officer for a short time and then crashes into a truck. The body cam footage shows the officer going into the car and then car rolling before shots were heard.

The family of Derek Adame is claiming the video proves negligence by the officer, and possibly excessive force. Adam’s family have filed a notice of claim agains the City of Surprise and the officer. Due to the on-going investigation into the shooting, Surprise police would not make any comments.

*ABC15 Arizona. “Family Files Lawsuit After Man Killed in Surprise Police Shooting.” Online video clip. YouTube. Youtube, 9 June 2017. Web. 10 June 2017.

**Gros ,Chris. “Family Fighting Back After Derek Adame Killed by Surprise Police in Shooting.” ABC15, 9 June 2017. Web. 10 June 2017.


IN THE NEWS

An Arizona Vacation Turns Into An Extended Jail Stay For Man from Jamaica

 

 Above:  a news broadcast by ABC 15 News featuring a My AZ Lawyer’s case*. Below: an article about the case.**

*ABC15 Arizona. “Arizona Vacation Turns Into Extended Jail Stay For Jamaican Man.” Online video clip. YouTube. Youtube, 2 May 2017. Web. 3 May 2017.

Arizona Vacation Turns Into Extended Jail Stay For Jamaican Man

Jamaican national Damion Williams, who has been in jail for nearly a year, says he was just visiting Arizona on a short vacation, then got swept up in a mess. In May, 2016, Williams flew into Sky Harbor airport to visit a friend. When Williams was at the friend’s home in phoenix, a SWAT team came in on a raid. Detectives believed that Curtis Lauderdale Jr. and Nickie Campbell displayed behavior similar to that of drug trafficking organizations, so a search warrant was issued and the south Phoenix residence was raided. The raid came up with 60 pounds of marijuana found in a closet. Williams, the house guest from Jamaica, was sleeping in the home at the time of the raid, and was arrested in the process. Williams, still in jail, is fighting for his freedom. Anthony Ramirez, attorney at My AZ Lawyers, is Williams’ attorney. “His presence is all that there is. Mr. Williams did not have dominion and control over the house, or anything elicit,” commented the attorney about the case. Mr. Ramirez says if the police can prove you have knowledge and control over something illegal in someone else’s home, you could get locked up. Williams is waiting for a court date as he sits in jail away from his family.*

**Bartels, Joe. “Arizona Vacation Turns Into Extended Jail Stay For Jamaican Man.” ABC15, 2 May 2017. Web. 2 May 2017.


How can My AZ Lawyers help you?  – My AZ Lawyers Criminal Defense Team

The #1 priority of Arizona Criminal Defense Lawyers is getting you legal representation as soon as possible. You can finance much of your retainer and legal costs with our Arizona defense attorneys, however, it is imperative to obtain the services of a lawyer as soon as you have been charged.  The sooner our experienced defense lawyers can get on the case the better we can defend your rights and make sure any police action is pursued strictly within the confines of the law. You can count on our Arizona criminal defense attorneys.

We have defended clients throughout Arizona who were facing many different types criminal charges, including:  DUI, Assault, Property Crimes, Domestic Violence, Drug Crimes, Theft,  and many other charges. We help the innocent defend themselves and the guilty to negotiate fair and compassionate sentencing.  Our AZ defense lawyers aggressively represent people throughout Arizona charged with felonies and misdemeanors.


IN THE NEWS


Video above: Attorney Anthony Ramirez is helping Damion Williams get home to his family as soon as possible. Damion Williams is wrongfully being accused of a crime he did not commit in Arizona. After doing time for a year for a crime that he did not commit, Damion is counting the days to go home. If you are wrongfully accused of a crime that you did not commit, contact the criminal defense attorneys at My AZ Lawyers in Mesa.

Police overreach has to be fought at every step. At MY AZ Lawyers, we often represent persons who have suffered as a result of officers overstepping the bounds of their authority, and acting in an inflammatory manner, escalating situations that should have never occurred in the first place. As a community, we can help moderate their bad behavior by standing up misconduct in a court of law, and vigorously insisting our right be respected. Anthony Knierem, a Mesa Arizona resident, was recently the victim of a brutal police overreaction, with absolutely no justification. Knierim refused to opened the door, since the police did not have a warrant, had not been called to his residence, and had no probable cause. The police moved quickly to knock down the door, and immediately ordered Knierim to the ground. He went from quietly enjoying a movie with his girlfriend in the privacy of his home to being shot with bean bags rounds and tased, bleeding, all for lawfully refusing entry to officers with no legal right to enter.


IN THE NEWS

Arizona Man Claims His Rights Were Violated by Mesa Police in a Confrontation

In the news video* above: Man claims rights were violated during confrontation with Mesa Police**

In Mesa, Arizona, police were called to an apartment.  A neighbor reported an incident involving domestic violence on Jan.8, 2017. Police reports state that the officers responded to the Sage Apartments around 8 p.m. (Southern and Dobson, Mesa). When officers heard voices and sounds coming for an adjoining apartment (not the one they were originally called there for), they began investigating.

The police saw several people inside the apartment and tried to get them to answer the door. The officer talks to a male for several minutes and attempt to get inside of the apartment. With body cameras recording, the police told the man they needed to check on the safety of a woman.

Police supervisors arrived after several mixtures and tired to get the man to answer the door, but the man refused. After tensions escalated, the Mesa Police got a battering ram.

Anthony Knierim, opened the door. A body camera video shows police ordering him to the ground. Knierim did not comply immediately with officers. He was shot with several less-lethal bean bag rounds and Tased at least three times. Knierim says he was bruised and bloodied from the Taser and the bean bag gun.

According to Knierim, he was with his girlfriend and two friends watching TV when police shoed up at his door. Knierim said, “At the time they showed up, I just assumed they were there because my movie was up loud.” Knierim did not want police inside his home without a warrant, as he knew his rights, but police claim they had “exigent” circumstances that prompted them to need to check the apartment right away for a possibly injured woman.

Police, by law, may enter a home without a warrant if they believe a person is in imminent danger.

Former police officer, now attorney for My AZ Lawyers, Anthony Ramirez is representing Knierim. Ramirez plans to file a notice of claim against the police for a civil rights violation. The Mesa Police Department have launched an internal affairs investigation, and cannot comment on what happened until that investigation is over.

*ABC15 Arizona. “Body Cam Video Released in Chaotic Confrontation.” Online video clip. ABC15.com. 12 April 2017. Web. 8 May 2017. 

**Bartels, Joe. “Man claims rights were violated during confrontation with Mesa Police.” ABC15, 12 April 2017. Web. 8 May 2017.


IN THE NEWS

MY AZ LAWYERS has a reputation for being a law firm that is dedicated to protecting the rights of Arizona residents. We know the law. Our firm provides successful, expert legal representation based upon knowledgable and experienced attorneys.

 

Above:  ABC 15 Arizona news broadcast * reports about a incident where an Arizona man represented  by My AZ Lawyers claims police brutality. Below: ABC News Article.

*ABC15 Arizona. “Mesa Man Claims Police Brutality, Files Lawsuit Against City.” Online video clip. YouTube. Youtube, 28 Dec, 2016. Web. 3 May 2017. 

Arizona Man Claims Police Brutality After Body Camera Captures Officer Pushing Him to Ground*

An incident that happened on August 14 has a man accusing a local law enforcement agency of police brutality. Some of the incident was captured on police body cameras.  According to the police records, Joshua Dombrowski, 31, was arrested on charges of using physical force in resisting arrest, operating a bicycle emerging from an alley or driveway, and failing to obey a police officer.

Dombrowski was riding his bike on the sidewalk in Mesa. The police report says Dombrowski forced two pedestrians to move off the sidewalk in order to make room for him. The officer yelled to Dombrowski, “stop.” Then Dombrowski looked at the officer and continued riding. The police report states Dombrowski refused to obey verbal commands, and continued riding at a higher rate of speed. Also, The officer caught up to Dombrowski, and told him to sit on the ground. Instead, according to the report, the man got off his bike and advanced toward the officer. The officer performed an impact push and Dombrowski tipped over backwards over his bike. The officer claims Dombrowski refused to put his hands behind his back and surrender as ordered.  As additional officers arrived on the scene to assist, the man continued to struggle. A Taser was used multiple times before the officers were able to get Dombrowski in handcuffs. Dombrowski was also placed in restraints to restrict his movement, and finally arrested and transported to Desert Banner Hospital.  He was treated for scrapes, cuts, and bruises. (Continued)


A man in Mesa, Arizona was recently a victim of police misconduct. This man and Attorney Anthony Ramirez are filing a claim against the Mesa Police Department.  If you believe you are victim of police misconduct in the state of Arizona, call My AZ Lawyers for a free consultation at 480-833-8000.


(Police Brutality story continued) The hospital staff informed the police that the man tested positive for methamphetamines, cocaine, THC, and alcohol. Anthony Ramirez, attorney at My AZ Lawyers, a former police officer, is representing Dombrowski. After ordering the videos from the police body cameras and viewed the footage, Ramirez believes the police report is contradicting to what is on the video. The officer did not record until after the initial encounter with Dombroski. The police officer did not record with the body camera until after the first encounter with Dombrowski. The body cams, however, store 30 seconds of silent video before the record button is actually turned on by the police. It was this silent video that concerned attorney Ramirez. “It’s our contention that the police officer knew what he was doing in not starting the video until about 25 seconds into his beating of my client,” comments Ramirez. The footage, says Ramirez, presents an issue of excessive use of force. Ramirez said they are in the process of updating a notice of claim submitted by Dombrowski to the City of Mesa in September, in which he alleged that he was “abused, pushed into the ground, aggressed and manhandled for no good reason.”

*Winsor, Morgan. “Arizona Man Claims Police Brutality After Body Camera Captures Officer Pushing Him to Ground.” ABC15, 30 Dec. 2016. Web. 2 May 2017.


MY AZ LAWYERS offers a FREE, no-obligation CASE EVALUATION.  If you believe you have a case, scheduled a free consultation with an attorney. A lawyer can help you understand your rights and answer questions, give you professional advice, and offer you options.


IN THE NEWS

Sky Harbor Protests


Above: ABC 15 News report*: protesters at Sky Harbor airport, Phoenix, AZ, speak out against President Trump’s controversial immigration order. My AZ Lawyer Anthony Ramirez at the Sky Harbor protest offering pro bono legal assistance to anyone who may have been locked up.  Fortunately, attorney Ramirez says the demonstration was peaceful.

*ABC15 Arizona. “Protests Continue at Sky Harbor for Second Day.” Online video clip. YouTube. Youtube, 29 Jan 2017. Web. 3 May 2017.