THE DEFENSE NEVER RESTS
DEPARTMENT FINISHES THE JOB
It is inspiring when you see the system work. When it doesn't you call me.
But sometimes the system works. A man is beaten into a coma based on his
race. The police conspire with the criminals and falsify reports and
lie to the FBI. The Justice Department indict all of them. True
at the local level the police system of checks and balances failed. Possibly
such events will cause local judges and federal judges to take note that yes
police lie and collaborate to hide events that have occurred. It is not
shocking. It is human nature. However, what is shocking is when the Courts
fail to recognize that these bad apples have been there, are there and will
be there. It is our job to clean up this mess. This is not one of
those tragedies. Sure it would be nice if the local police could police
their own and save taxpayers money in having to get the Justice Department
involved. Wolves have never been very good at keeping wolves
from the chickens.
Washington (CNN) --
Five people, including three police officers, have been indicted on charges
related to the beating death of a Latino man in rural Pennsylvania in July
2008, the Justice Department said Tuesday.
Two indictments charge the five with federal hate crimes, obstruction of
justice and conspiracy in what authorities are calling a racially motivated
The indictments come almost six months after a Schuylkill County jury
acquitted two teens of aggravated assault and one of murder in the death of
The undocumented Mexican immigrant was beaten into a coma during a street
brawl involving the teens and their friends on a residential street in
Shenandoah. The incident divided the small, rural mining town along racial
lines and became a flash point for racial tensions nationwide.
After the verdict, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell denounced the attack as
racially motivated and called on the Justice Department to intervene.
A federal grand jury handed up the indictments last week, and they were
unsealed Tuesday. The two young men, Derrick Donchak and Brandon Piekarsky,
are accused of a hate crime for beating Ramirez while shouting racial
epithets at him, according to the department.
If convicted of hate crime charges, Donchak and Piekarsky face a maximum
penalty of life in prison. Donchak also faces a maximum of 20 years in
prison if convicted of obstruction, and an additional five years on the
charge of conspiring to obstruct justice.
Donchak also faces three counts of conspiring to obstruct justice and
related offences. He is accused of attempting to orchestrate a coverup with
members of the Shenandoah Police Department, the Justice Department said.
Shenandoah Police Chief Matthew Nestor and Lt. William Moyer and Officer
Jason Hayes are charged with conspiring to obstruct justice in the Ramirez
investigation. Moyer faces additional charges of witness and evidence
tampering and making false statements to the FBI.
Nestor, Moyer and Hayes intentionally failed to "memorialize or record"
statements made by Piekarsky about the incident, and "wrote false and
misleading official reports" that "intentionally omitted information about
the true nature of the assault and the investigation," the indictment said.
Nestor, Moyer and Hayes each face up to 20 years in prison on each of the
obstruction charges if convicted, authorities said, along with an additional
five years on the charges of conspiring to obstruct justice. Moyer faces an
additional five years if convicted of making false statements to the FBI.
"The FBI wants to hear from anyone who may have information regarding
alleged civil rights violations or public corruption in Schuylkill County,"
the Justice Department said Tuesday. Those with information can contact the
Allentown, Pennsylvania, FBI office.
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