This week’s Barling & Barrett show will place the conduct of police departments under another microscope starting with the beating of Kelly Thomas that led to two officers being indicted by a Grand Jury for second degree murder an manslaughter and leading up to the latest in bizarre defenses offered by a Police Detective who claims he did not know he raped a woman because he was under the influence of Zoloft.  I guess Dan White’s 1979 “twinkie defense” wasn’t bizarre enough.

Contrary to popular belief, the “twinkie defense” is not a recognized legal defense, but a catchall term coined by reporters during their coverage of the trial of defendant Dan White for the murders of San Francisco city supervisor Harvey Milk and mayor George Moscone. White’s defense was that he suffered diminished capacity as a result of his depression caused by his change in diet from healthy food to Twinkies and other sugary food. Contrary to common belief, White’s attorneys did not argue that the Twinkies were the cause of White’s actions, but that their consumption was symptomatic of his underlying depression. White was convicted of voluntary manslaughter.

In Westminister California (on the border of Los Angeles and Orange Counties) Detective Anthony Nicholas Orban’s attorney claims that his client was so overwhelmed by the prescription drug that he was mentally “unconscious” and “totally unaware of his actions,” when he kidnaped and raped of a woman in 2010.

The victim testified, “Then he looked at me and said: ‘Who are you? How did I get here? Whose car is this? He told me to put my clothes back on.” This seemed to support his argument until he sexually assaulted her again a few minutes later.

At the start of the trial, Orban’s attorney told the court he intended to present a “not guilty by reason of unconsciousness” defense that took the prosecution and judge by surprise.  If declared insane, Orban would be placed in a mental hospital. If he is found not guilty by reason of unconsciousness, Orban would walk out a free man. Certainly a roll of the dice with dangerous consequences.

But this defense is not unheard of. In 2004, man who beat a friend over the sale of a bike was acquitted of an attempted murder charge after his attorney argued that he had suffered an adverse reaction to Zoloft. A year later, a jury rejected a similar Zoloft defense in the case of a 15-year-old South Carolina boy who shot his grandparents. Attempts to prove temporary insanity, or temporary mental defect, are rarely successful in California.

While in Los Angeles County, seven deputies from County sheriff’s Gang Enforcement Team were placed on leave suspected of belonging to the alleged Jump Out Boys secret clique that celebrates officer-involved shootings. Internal affairs investigators are investigating whether the deputies violated Department’s rules or committed serious misconduct.

Last year, the Sheriff’s department fired half a dozen deputies who worked on the”3000″ floor of Men’s Central Jail after the group started a fight with two fellow deputies at an employee Christmas party.  They allegedly punched a female deputy in the face. A former top jail commander told the Los Aneles Times that Sheriff’s would assaulting inmates to earn the right to wear 3000 tattoos.

Every show has to have some comedic relief because there stories can be horrifying.  So we will venture into the absurd with a story about police officers planning to have a Richmond police Explorer arrested on a drunken-driving arrest in Danville and some fools trying to smuggle drugs into a jail inside a burrito.  Yes, there were more than refried beans in those burritos.

A Concord private investigator and a friend, the head of the central Contra Costa County’s drug task force, were arrested last month and charged with multiple counts of drug dealing and conspiracy. The FBI is bow investigating allegations that the two Richmond police officers recruited teens from the department’s Explorer program into their private security firm, “illegally armed them with guns and sent them to patrol the city’s most dangerous housing complexes.”

The two Explorers and other employees this past summer began to complain about working conditions in these security jobs and had a falling-out with their mentors.  Police officers hired attractive female decoys to meet the Explorers and would coax them into drinking. The women were told to lead the young men through neighboring Danville, where a police officer would make a prearranged traffic stop.

The police officers, usually working with attorneys handling contentious divorce cases, would try to tarnish the reputations of the husbands of the attorneys’ female clients. So far five men have been arrested on drunken-driving charges that have been linked to the alleged scheme.

Just when you thought it was safe to get a divorce, the police step in. What has happened to out police and Sheriff’s Department. Barling & Barrett will continue to filet these stories on our show for the country to see and judge for themselves.  Join us Sunday for a spirited commentary on the actions of our police and Sheriff’s Department.

Join us at 1pm pacific, 4pm eastern, here is the listen live link.

 Mannie Barling and Simon Barrett

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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