Family Receives $8 Million After Innocent Dad Executed On Video as He Begged for His Life

As TFTP has reported extensively, Daniel Shaver was the unarmed victim of an officer-involved murder whereby a guest at the hotel called 911 to report seeing a man with a gun. It turns out the gun was no gun at all. However, when a coward Mesa cop “perceived” Daniel Shaver with a gun, this gave him justification for murdering the unarmed father of two.

This execution of an unarmed innocent father was captured on video and despite all the facts of the situation, no one was ever held accountable — until now. This week, the taxpayers of Mesa, Arizona were informed that they would be paying out $8 million to Shaver’s family — Laney Sweet and their two children — not the cop who killed him.

A statement was released by the legal team of Sweet and Shaver’s children after the settlement was reached and it is damning (emphasis ours):

“Daniel Shaver lived, and will be remembered, as a wonderful, compassionate husband and father. His spirit endowed and embedded light and love to those around him throughout his much-too-short life. While on this earth he provided security, prosperity and stability to his wife and children. He brought a pragmatic, caring perspective to every problem he approached, and had a good-willed nature and charm.

His beloved widow and children miss him every hour of every day. They will never forget Daniel’s loving legacy, nor take for granted the cherished memories of the beautiful time they spent with him. No words can do justice to a life unjustly cut short, and no amount of money can undo the transgressions that cruelly removed Daniel from his family’s lives forever.

While this settlement helps Daniel’s widow and children with the financial stability to move forward, it does not erase the cruelty of his killing, or the malicious campaign by the Mesa Police Department—orchestrated and implemented by their attorneys for over 6 years of needless, malevolent scorched-earth litigation. This settlement does nothing to cure the blatant lack of accountability by all involved since the night of Daniel’s death, which stands as an irredeemable blight on the criminal justice system.

The failure and injustice of Daniel Shaver’s killing and the resulting sham criminal trial, which made a mockery of the notion of Justice predictably ended in no conviction and to this day casts an ugly shadow over this settlement. As this chapter closes, we call upon the Department of Justice to swiftly proceed with its ongoing investigation and announce the federal criminal charges of officers involved, and bring justice where the state of Arizona has failed.”

As we reported at the time, when Brailsford and his partner arrived, they began a standoff with Shaver for no reason and ordered the innocent father to crawl toward them on the hotel floor. Shaver was begging for his life, crying, crawling on his belly, then on his hands and knees. He was eventually shot to death by Brailsford when Shaver reached back to pull up his shorts which were falling down from the crawling.

As Shaver pulled up his shorts, Brailsford perceived that Shaver was reaching for a non-existent gun thereby justifying the brutal execution of an innocent father.

Mesa PD fired Brailsford — not for murdering Shaver — but upon learning the inside of his AR15’s dust cover had the words “You’re F**ked” engraved, a violation of police department policy.

Subsequently, Brailsford was charged with Shaver’s murder but a jury of his peers found him “not guilty” and acquitted him of all charges. Even with undeniable footage, the Mesa cop killed an unarmed man who was begging for his life, the citizens on Brailsford’s jury were seemingly conditioned to give the officer a pass because he perceived there was a gun. In 2019, Brailsford was rehired before immediately retiring and received a pension of $31,000 a year for life!

Since Brailsford is still in his 20’s, if he lives to be 65 he will have been paid over 1 million dollars for killing Shaver, an action which supposedly now has caused Brailsford to be disabled according to the terms of his retirement — thus the angry sentiment in the statement above.

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Cop Pulls Gun at High School, ‘Accidentally’ Shoots an Innocent Kid and is NOT Arrested or Even Fired

Imagine for a moment that you were carrying a pistol in a public space, and all of the sudden, you accidentally squeeze off a round. Now, imagine if this place was a school.

There are two possible scenarios that would take place; the first one is that police return fire and you are killed. The second, less lethal result would be your inevitable arrest and charges of public endangerment, unlawful discharge, illegal use of a firearm, assault with a deadly weapon, terrorism, or a myriad of other infractions associated with sending a deadly projectile hurling through a space occupied by innocent children. You would immediately be facing fines, jail time, probation, and firearms restrictions.

However, if you are a government agent who’s trusted with carrying a deadly weapon into places others cannot, you needn’t worry about any of those repercussions. The scenario below just so happens to prove it.

Vermillion County Deputy Tim DisPennett, identified as a 19-year veteran of the department, was giving instruction to vocational students at South Vermillion High School when he pulled his gun and “accidentally” shot a student.

The class was geared at teaching students how to be police officers, and participants in the drill were acting out a scenario with a “bad guy,” according to WTHI.

Hopefully, none of the students being taught by Deputy DisPennett were paying attention to his instruction — as his methods are clearly flawed.  

“This morning at South Vermillion High School, there was an isolated incident in one of our vocational classrooms. The incident was an accidental discharge of a firearm by a law enforcement officer during a drill. One student was injured without life-threatening injuries and has been taken to the hospital. Only SVHS is currently on lockdown, due to the abundance of emergency personnel in the building,” read a statement sent out to parents after the shooting.

Luckily the student who was shot was not severely injured and will be okay. As for the deputy, he has not been arrested, nor fired, and has only been placed on paid leave. Detectives with the department are now investigating the shooting.

Aside from the above-the-law treatment of this officer, the excuse for the weapon accidentally discharging is nothing short of asinine.

Guns do not fire themselves.

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Cop Gets Wrist Slap for Shooting Surrendering Unarmed Man in the Head, Executing Him

In December 2017, community members began searching for answers after an unarmed man was shot and killed by a police officer in an unmarked car who claimed that he opened fire because he had his hand in his pocket. But their victim, 25-year-old Dennis Plowden Jr. was unarmed and was not a threat when cops opened fire on him just six seconds after they stopped the vehicle.

For years, Plowden’s family sought justice and this month, they found out that justice will not come. Disgraced officer Eric Ruch Jr. — who put a bullet in Plowden’s head that night — was sentenced to just 11 months in jail.

Ruch, 34, was charged in 2020 and convicted in September 2022 of voluntary manslaughter and a weapons charge. The voluntary manslaughter charge alone was supposed to come with a 20-year sentence. However, Ruch, according to the court, “demonstrated good behavior” since he murdered Plowden, so he will not have to spend years in prison for his crimes.

“Nothing he is going to do in prison is going to make him a better person,” Common Pleas Court Judge Barbara McDermott said.

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Watch As Cops Attack Man For Filming Them Break The Law, Steal His Camera — Taxpayers Held Liable

For years now, the Free Thought Project has been reporting on and participating in the act of filming the police. Many of these folks don’t just film arrests and police stops, but they take to filming police departments to see how they react to legal behavior. These folks take to public spaces and legally begin filming to see what the police response will be. The practice of legally filming public spaces to report on the police response is known as a “First Amendment Audit.”

While TFTP has reported on multiple instances in which good cops actually uphold their oaths to the Constitution and protect the citizens’ right to film in public, the majority of them react by showing their ignorance of the law.

As the co-founder of TFTP, Jason Bassler pointed out years ago,

More often than not the officers demonstrate they are more concerned with intimidation, dominance and subservience than knowing or upholding the law. Because many of them react so poorly while highlighting the lack of understanding they have for their job, the videos go mega viral garnering millions of views. The virility in turn creates incentive for more people to pick up the camera and “audit” police in their city and in the slightest way helps push back against the ever-increasing police state.

One particularly egregious case of police failing to uphold their oaths to the Constitution came out of Des Moines, Iowa, and was shared with TFTP in 2019. Now, 3 years later, it is finally getting settled as the taxpayers of Des Moines get held responsible for the actions of several bullies with badges.

Daniel Robbins – the gentleman in the video – had committed no crime, was polite, and was acting entirely within the constraints of the Constitution, yet he was bullied, detained, harassed, his rights violated, and had his equipment stolen.

The taxpayers of Des Moines are now being forced to pay $125,000 for the actions of their officers.

Adding to the disgusting nature of this rights’ violation, when Robbins originally attempted to seek civil action against the department for their most shameful treatment of this innocent man, a judge sided with the cops. The judge claimed that Robbins’ completely legal activity — protected by the Constitution of the United States — was probable cause for cops to detain him, harass him, and confiscate his equipment.

Not only were the cops completely ignorant of the Constitution they swore an oath to uphold, but the judge appears to be equally incompetent. The court has changed it tune, however, and as the case was set to go to court next week, the city settled.

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Cop Found Guilty After Video Showed Him Savagely Torture Handcuffed Man & Cover It Up

 In 2020, a federal grand jury returned a 12-count indictment against three very bad cops – officers Joseph Chase Winkle, Jeremy Gibson, and sergeant Joseph Krejsa of the Muncie Police Department for their roles in using excessive force and attempting to cover up the misconduct. Video from the officers’ body cameras was crucial in securing the charges.

The indictment charges Winkle with nine felonies, Gibson with one felony offense, and Krejsa with two felony offenses. Now, nearly two years later, and Winkle has pleaded guilty to 11 counts while Gibson has pleaded to one. Krejsa remains on paid leave.

“According to the superseding indictment, Winkle’s actions included kicking, punching, knee striking, and using a taser on arrestees without justification, and resulted in bodily injury to the arrestees,” a news release from the US Attorney’s Office read.

The maximum penalty for the deprivation-of-rights offenses is 10 years in prison and the maximum penalty for false report offenses is 20 years of imprisonment, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

According to the charges, one of the victims suffered serious injuries from Winkle’s attack and another was knocked unconscious.

Body camera video from one of the arrests shows Winkle and another officer handcuffing a compliant man before deploying a taser on him causing him to writhe in pain. As the handcuffed man squirms in agony, the officer viciously attacked him with fists, tasers, and knee strikes.

Gibson was involved in similar attacks and is accused of depriving victims of their right to be free from excessive force by stomping on them and delivering multiple knee strikes.

Krejsa sat back and watched his two subordinates beat their victims and helped them cover it up afterward.

As RTV6 reported at the time, on one occasion, Krejsa minimized the level of force used by Winkle during one arrest, and, on another occasion, falsely represented that a different Muncie Police Department sergeant cleared Winkle of his use of force when it was actually Krejsa who conducted that review.

In other words, they investigated themselves and found they did nothing wrong.

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Good Samaritan Killed by Violent Cop While Rendering Aid to Shooting Victim

Kenneth Vineyard, 48, is the type of man who would run up to a complete stranger who lay bleeding on the ground and do anything he could to help him. In fact, that is exactly what he did on Sunday when a shooting unfolded in a Walmart parking lot. Unfortunately for Vineyard, however, this would be his last act of kindness thanks to Pennsylvania’s finest — who killed him for it.

Vineyard’s family is now demanding justice after an officer with the Center Township Police Department walked up to Vineyard as he helped a complete stranger and killed him.

“This appears to be another instance of senseless police violence,” said attorney Joel Sansone, according to KDKA.

According to police, Vineyard was at the Monaca Walmart with his fiancé on Sunday afternoon when gunfire erupted in the parking lot. Vineyard was not involved in the shooting. Police said Rashaun Smith, 20, was shot in the abdomen by Yeshua Bratcher, 23, and Vineyard simply ran up to Smith and began rendering aid.

“As the victim of that shooting lay bleeding, a Good Samaritan named Kenneth Vineyard rushed to the victim to render aid,” said Sansone.

Vineyard stopped Smith’s bleeding until paramedics arrived. When paramedics began helping Smith, Vineyard backed away and let them work. That’s when a man in plainclothes — who was a Center Township police officer — approached Vineyard and began barking orders.

Vineyard told the officer that he had just helped the shooting victim and was trying to make his way back to his fiancé. The officer couldn’t have cared less, however, and violently attacked Vineyard, according to Sansone. The officer reportedly shoved Vineyard to the pavement so hard that it killed him.

“The unidentified man insisted Mr. Vineyard step away and violently pushed Mr. Vineyard to the ground where he struck his head on the pavement,” Sansone said.

According to Sansone, Vineyard’s fiancé began chest compressions immediately while the first responders on the scene jumped in to help as well but he had no pulse. Vineyard was rushed to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Sansone says he has video of the officer shoving Vineyard as well as witness statements that corroborate his claims. “We want the name of the individual who caused this death and we intend to sue him and possibly others,” said Sansone.

“This officer should be immediately suspended pending the outcome of this investigation if the facts are as I’ve been told. He should be arrested and charged with manslaughter at the very least,” he added.

Although state police claim to be investigating the attack, the officer involved has yet to even be interviewed. Yeshua Bratcher, however, has been found, arrested, and charged with attempted homicide, aggravated assault, recklessly endangering another person and a firearms violation.

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Taxpayers to Be Held Liable After Black Pastor Arrested for Watering Flowers

On the day he was kidnapped and thrown in a cage, Pastor Michael Jennings had harmed no one, committed no crime and was actually being a good neighbor. He never thought that being asked to water his friend’s flower bed would lead to such a police interaction but thanks to ignorant and apparently-racial profiling cops in Alabama, that’s exactly what happened. Now, the taxpayers of Alabama will be held liable for the actions of the cops.

According to Georgia Public Broadcasting, Jennings, a longtime pastor at Vision of Abundant Life Church in Sylacauga, Ala., is being represented in his newly filed federal lawsuit by national civil rights attorney, Harry Daniels, and attorneys Bethaney Embry Jones, Joi Travis and Roderick Van Daniels. They hosted a news conference Saturday with the Alabama NAACP to discuss the case.

“I’m here for accountability, and I’m here for justice,” Jennings said.

“These poor judgment decisions reflect poorly on the type of training the Childersburg police officers receive … if they were acting in accordance within police guidelines,” Alabama NAACP President Benard Simelton said in a statement to NPR.

As we reported at the time, Jennings was kidnapped by police in May — his kidnappers, two officers with the Childersburg police department. The entire interaction was captured on video.

According to police, they showed up at Jennings’ neighbor’s house that day claiming they received a call about a suspicious person. Being that Jennings has lived in the neighborhood for years and is long time friends of his neighbors, he is hardly suspicious yet police would use this claim to violate his rights.

As the video shows, Jennings is literally watering his neighbor’s flowers when police show up because this is exactly what his neighbors had asked. When the unidentified officer asks the pastor what he is doing, Jennings told him that he had just gotten back from conducting church and he stopped at his neighbor’s home to water their flowers because they had asked him to do so.

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NO CHARGES Despite Video Showing Cop Dump 13 Rounds Into Unarmed Child—He Got a Bonus Instead

January of this year was the 4th anniversary of Sheila and Steve Albers’ son’s death. Their 17-year-old son was gunned down by police while unarmed. As is normally the case when police kill unarmed and often innocent people, no charges were filed against Overland Park Officer Clayton Jenison who shot and killed the unarmed 17-year-old boy on January 20, 2018. On top of refusing to charge the officer, police have also repeatedly refused to release records concerning the case, despite claiming they would do so three years ago.

On Friday, the Department of Justice announced that it will not pursue federal criminal civil rights charges against Jenison, claiming they could not prove all elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt.

Officials met privately with members of the Albers family to notify them of the decision.

The DoJ’s decision is in spite of the fact that during a civil lawsuit based on this incident, the DOJ noted that a federal district court in Kansas ruled that a reasonable jury could find that the officer involved in the shooting had indeed used unreasonable force when he fired the first two shots at Albers. As WIBW reports, the federal criminal investigation found no substantial evidence inconsistent with this conclusion.

Unfortunately, as WIBW points out, unlike in the many state jurisdictions that have statutes criminalizing killings committed with lesser mental states, like criminal negligence or recklessness, the DOJ said the federal government has no statute to criminalize a police officer’s use of unreasonable force, if willfulness cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

As we reported at the time, police were called to the home of teenager John Albers after his girlfriend said she was afraid he was going to kill himself. Police arrived and Jenison opened fire on Albers as the teen backed out of his driveway.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation opened their investigation into the case in September of 2020. But now we see that it went nowhere.

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SWAT Team Raids Innocent Elderly Couple, Destroys Their Home Because Their Power Bill Was Too Low

Even in states with legal marijuana, law enforcement’s addiction to the drug war still lingers like a dark cloud over over the land of the ostensibly free. Even in California, who has paved the way in legalization of cannabis, police officers still violently, and with extreme prejudice, lay waste to the rights of innocent people who dare grow, use, or sell this most beneficial plant.

Because of their addiction to the war on drugs, cops in Riverside County have just cost the taxpayers of their town $136,000. The money was paid to Chen-Chen Hwang, 67, and her husband, Jiun-Tsong Wu, 75, to settle a federal civil rights lawsuit alleging that their two homes were broken into by armed agents of the state and ransacked as officers looked for non-existent marijuana plants.

According to Alex Coolman, the attorney who filed the suit on behalf of the elderly couple, police were monitoring power bills of town residents and used the low amount of the couple’s bill as reason to believe they were growing marijuana.

“This was a very strange and frightening incident,” Hwang said in a release from Coolman’s office. “We did nothing to deserve this, and it made us feel unsafe in our own homes.”

The raid unfolded on August 5, 2021 and caused thousands in damage to the couple’s home.

Apparently police in Riverside County monitor power consumption and when they see low power usage, they automatically assume that people are stealing power to grow marijuana.

“The deputies believed the defendants were stealing power to grow marijuana because their power consumption was low, and they said as much,” Coolman told the Press-Enterprise.

But the couple was not growing marijuana and their power consumption was low because they used solar power and were “thrifty,” according to Coolman.

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Cop Found Not Guilty Despite Video of Him Killing Innocent Woman While Trying to Kill Her Dog

As readers of the Free Thought Project know, police killing or attempting to kill dogs is an all too common occurrence — happening so often that it is caught on video much of the time. Also, as the following tragic case our of Arlington, TX illustrates, all too often, police will attempt to kill a dog — miss the dog — and shoot and kill an innocent person instead.

In 2020, a Texas grand jury indicted a police officer after he was seen on video trying to kill a dog and killing an innocent woman instead.

Arlington police officer Ravi Singh was charged with criminally negligent homicide for killing Maggie Brooks, 30, the daughter of an Arlington fire captain. On Monday, however, he was found not guilty — despite overwhelming evidence against him. Naturally, this news upset Brooks’ family.

“You see the video for yourself,” Brooks’ father, Troy Brooks said. “There’s nobody that owns a gun that would ever take that shot. Ever. But if you’re a police officer, you’re covered in absolute immunity. You can do whatever you want, and there are no repercussions for you.”

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