Wednesday, December 18, 2019



     It's hard to imagine the weight hanging over someone's head that is on the lam or thought they got away with murder.  Is that day coming for Sergeant Rick Torres who murdered Jason Wilkinson May 8, 2005 while working for the Vancouver Police Department in Vancouver, Washington?  Are the walls starting to close in on Torres?  

     Former Sergeant Rick Torres murdered Jason Wilkinson on May 8, 2005.  The investigation is  and has been a covered-up by Clark County Sheriff's Office and the Vancouver Police Department since the day Officer Torres murdered Jason Wilkinson.  After the cover-up of the murder for Clark County Sheriff's Office the VPD did their own internal affairs investigation and found Torres violated department policy for conducting an unauthorized chase.  This was the second for Torres during his employ at VPD.  He was given 2 days off without pay.
     A review of Torres earnings leading up to the shooting reveal that he was receiving 1/4 of his pay the 3 months leading up to the shooting.  It is unclear why his pay was cut the three months preceding the murder.

An interview request has been sent to the former VPD Police Chief, Brian Martinek.  There has been no response.  Martinek now runs a non-profit half-way house, receiving public and private funds.

In July of 2016 Sergeant Torres received a LinkedIn message from a defendant he was scheduled to testify against on August 10, 2016.  The message referenced the death of Jason Wilkinson.  The defendant was going to questioning Torres about the shooting of Jason Wilkinson as a pro se litigant.

Sergeant Torres was sued by the family of Jason Wilkinson.  The ruling reads like a probable cause affidavit.

Judge Settle's opines:

  • ".....there is no question that Torres acted with the unconstitutional purpose to harm, terrorize and in fact kill Wilkinson.  After Key walked to the front of the minivan and the minivan began to back away from the telephone pole, Key and Torres looked at each other, seemingly acknowledged each other; then Torres walked to the passenger side of the minivan and effectively executed Wilkinson by shooting him eleven times at close range.  Torres shot Wilkinson when the minivan was traveling at a slow speed in the exact opposite direction from where Key. stood.  Even after Wilkinson dropped his hands from the steering wheel and slumped in the driver's seat mortally wounded, Torres continued to fire into Wilkinson as the minivan coasted in reverse.
Based on this version of events, which is supported by admissible evidence a reasonable fact finder could conceivably conclude that Officer Torres intended to harm, terrorize or kill Jason Wilkinson and therefore acted beyond the scope of a legitimate law enforcement purpose. 

The defendant contacted Torres in July via LinkedIn asking him to provide information about the Wilkinson v. Torres case prior to the upcoming trial.  The defendant's lawyer had not interviewed Torres and the original misdemeanor arrest was February 11, 2015, a year and a half prior.    

An expert witness was going to testify at the August 10, 2016 trial that the weapons training Torres as a US Marine from 1987 through 1991, and his 6 years with VPD as a SWAT officer counter his conflicting statements, rendering Sergeant Torres version of events as implausible.  The expert witness was going to show that Torres fired 11 rounds into Wilkinson from approximately 8 feet away.  For comparison, the average size bedroom in the US is approximately 12 x 12.  Taking one step in the bedroom would approximate the distance Sergeant Torres was from Wilkinson.

After learning in July that he was going to have to testify against the defendant, SergeantTorres resigns from the Clark County Sheriff's Office.  Neither he, nor the State respond to the LinkedIn message sent by the defendant to Torres asking about the Wilkinson shooting.

Enclosed is the resignation letter from Torres.  Torres wanted to "quell the rumors until I talk with my guys".  The State never disclosed Torres resignation nor did it disclose that Torres resigned under a cloud of "rumors"

The email references a meeting between KC Kasberg, Sergeant Torres and Breanne Nelson on August 3rd the day before.

That same day, DPA Lacey Blaire called the "victim".  The "victim" called the DPA back on Friday August 5 and the motion to extend the trial was filed the same day.  The trial subpoenas had been sent to the witnesses July 26, 2016.  The pretrial hearing was scheduled for August 8, 2016 and the misdemeanor assault trial was scheduled for August 10th.

The only reasonable inference is that Sergeant Torres told Kasberg and Nelson about the LinkedIn message sent from the defendant to Torres earlier in July.  In turn, either Nelson or Kasburg called the DPA and informed her to stop the August 10 trial, which was 5 days away.   Clark County could not put Torres on the stand due to the fact they had evidence they hired a LE officer that was witnessed by at least one eyewitness murdering Jason Wilkinson.

The liability for Clark County would be staggering if they would be held liable by the defendants prosecuted where Torres was involved.  All the trials for the defendants where Torres was involved would either get a new trial or be released.  This liability would date back to May 8, 2005, when Torres murdered Jason Wilkinson.

In an email between Clark County's risk manager and other Clark County officials, identified Torres as being a liability to the County.  He was named in a harassment suit filed against him by another employee.  Clark County settled with Erin Nolan shortly after the defendant pled guilty to a crime he did not commit.  The risk management email identifies this incident as the second time Torres came up due to being a liability financially to Clark County due to his behavior.  The prosecutor did not disclose this email to defendant and it was found, like most all other documents, through public records request.

The DPA is required to turn over all exculpatory evidence to the defendant under Brady v. Maryland, a case that deems it violates the constitutional right of a defendant if favorable evidence is withheld from the defendant.  The Prosecuting attorney's office has completely disregarded all rules.


The defendant hired David McDonald, a Portland, Or. Attorney shortly after he was arrested.

 November 19th, the defendant asked his attorney to gather the personnel files of Sergeant Torres because he believed Torres to be a dirty cop and arrested him without probable cause.

November 24, 2015, the defendant found the Wilkinson v. Torres case and brought it to McDonalds attention.  McDonald did not file a motion to dismiss nor did he ask the court to judicially recognize the case in order to get it into the record.

Years have passed since the defendant was arrested, and made a plea deal to avoid being framed for a murder-for-hire plot orchestrated by his new court-appointed attorney after the withdrawal of David McDonald.

To add insult to injury, Judge Zimmerman ordered a psychological evaluation of the defendant because he believed the Federal Government was trying to kill him.  Instead, it was Sergeant Torres who was hired by the defendants own divorce attorney, Mike Roe, from Vancouver Washington.   Roe was having an affair with the defendants wife and knew a dirty police officer they could hire to kill the order to receive over $400,000 in death benefits and $9,000 per month for the "victim" in the case.

David McDonald slow-walked the misdemeanor case for 17 months knowing that Sergeant Torres murdered Jason Wilkinson.  When the defendant attempted to go pro se, Judge Zimmerman ordered the psychological evaluation based on the defendant's fear that the Federal Government was trying to kill him, when in actuality, it was Sergeant Torres who is a CIA wet-worker (assassin).

The defendant was run off of a cliff after being chased down a dirt road in rural Skamania County June 4, 2015.  The following day he and his divorce attorney, Mike Roe, were going to depose the "victim" in this case.  Obviously, the defendant did not make it to the deposition, as he was laying in the bottom of a ravine and nearly died.

Torres was not at work at the time the defendant was ran off of the cliff and none of the defendant's attorneys have ever interviewed Torres about his whereabouts during this time nor the events surrounding the murder of Jason Wilkinson.

Clark County will not release former Sergeant Torres personnel files, pre-employment background check, lie detector test results, nor the questions asked of Torres during the lie detector test prior to him getting hired by CCSO in 2013, eight years after he murdered Jason Wilkinson.

It is not plausible that the Prosecuting Attorney just forgot about sending the information that they hired a murderer, Rick Torres.  They investigated Torres 2005 shooting, covered it up, then hired him 8 years later knowing this was in his background, and didn't disclose it.

A company Man is rewarded for following the rules.  The better the Company Man, the less it matters what the rules are, how ethical they are, how just they humane they are.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Vancouver Public Defender John Terry Fixing Case Against Own Client

Past Behavior is Best Predictor of Future Behavior

The conversation below takes place in Judge Darvin Zimmerman's courtroom in Clark County, Washington. John Terry attempted to frame Matt L'Hommedieu for a murder-for-hire plot with his former employer, Jeffrey Barrar.

Fortunately, today we have google and yelp to review people and their businesses. For an attorney, their reputation is their stock-in-trade. The conversation below depicts the outward behavior of attorneys operating with impunity.  

Case Fixing 101:  Sidebar Scamming

9:53:37 AM
JT: How was your honeymoon?
KC: (mumbles response)
JT: I have a potential (inaudible) phone call (inaudible). Are you up for it?
KC: (inaudible)
JT: (inaudible) just call this girl in Oregon and ask her if (inaudible)
JT:  (inaudible) she had a baby (inaudible) and two years later she said it was his kid. She got a paternity test.  My guy didn’t take the paternity test, my advise and several criminal attorneys’ advise.  (Inaudible) ordered by the prosecutor. The age of consent is 18 in Oregon. Anyways, we just want his mom to have visits.  
JT: You call up and ask if mom can have visits. She says no, ok. If she says yes, good.
KC: Why me?
JT: I can’t do it, I represent the dad. I’ll tell you a little bit more. Grandma, (pause) got a DNA swab (Terry laughs). We’re gonna test it, like secretly. If it’s his kid, he’s just gonna own up to it. If it’s not his kid, nobody (inaudible) test exists.
KC: Yeah, I mean I’ll, I’ll do it for free.
JT:  No, I’m gonna pay you some (inaudible). I’m gonna pay you for a half hour at least.
KC: (Inaudible) I mean, that’s the least I could do for you…
JT: Just say “I represent Grandma…(inaudible)
KC: Give me the names and the numbers and I’ll (inaudible)

**JT (John Terry)
  KC (Krisztian Carrasco)
Note: Jeffrey Barrar pictured in center of screen

The partially captured audio is indicative of how Clark County attorneys fix the cases...even against their own clients. This is what they did to former Navy SEAL, Matt L'Hommedieu.

John Terry was assigned to represent Matt L'Hommedieu by Judge Darvin Zimmerman. They worked collectively to frame him for a murder for hire plot.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Letter to CIA and FBI Inspector General regarding CIA Complicity in JFK Assassination

August 26, 2019

TO: CIA IG Sharpley and FBI IG Horowitz

FROM:  Matt L’Hommedieu

RE:  Dandol Dianzi cable linking the CIA and WH to the JFK Assassination

Enclosed you will find a cable that was classified secret until 1998. 

November 20th, 1963 Dandol Dianzi called the Cuban Embassy to warn them of something “of great importance to the nation”.  This was obviously orchestrated by the former Chief of Station, E. Howard Hunt.  The call was intercepted by the wire-taps Hunt set up in order to monitor the Cuban Embassy while he was the COS in Montevideo from 1956-1960.  Hunt wrote about this in his book, Undercover; Memoirs of an American Secret Agent.

You will be able to identify the deception of the CIA by their classifying the cable [SECRET] and the CIA's attempt to scrub Hunt's entire personnel record of any association he had with Montevideo, Uruguay.  His personnel station assignment during his tenure as Montevideo COS is [REDACTED].  This is confirmation that the CIA intended to completely disassociate Hunt from Montevideo, hoping the passage of time and the inundation of millions of pages of declassified documents of the JFK assassination over the years would bury the Dianzi cable and Hunt's association with Montevideo and Dandol Dianzi.   

Obviously Hunt got in touch with Dianzi knowing that the phone call would be intercepted by the CIA and then routed to the WH per protocol.  None of this was disclosed to the FBI and Dianzi is not mentioned in the Warren Commission Report or any subsequent investigations into JFK's assassination.   

Also, neither Melvin Winters nor Nita Winters are mentioned in the W.C. Report, nor is there anything about Lyndon Johnson giving two Belgian made guns to the Winters two days before the assassination (see daily diary of LBJ, November 20th1963).  There is no report from the FBI as to what two Belgian made guns were handed over to the Winters two days prior to the murder.  Were they Belgian FAL sniper rifles?   They may have been; however, the gun exchange is part of the ruse that Hunt (the ultimate propagandist and false-flag bearer) set up.  No self-respecting sniper would allow anyone to touch his weapon two days before the biggest operation of their life.   The assassination plot is really that simple!  

On his death bed, Howard Hunt describes who was involved in the assassination and admits to his involvement.  He names  Frank Sturgis, David Morales, David Phillips, Cord Meyer, William Harvey, Antonio Veciana, a French Gunman on the Grassy Knoll, and LBJ.  And my last name is L’Hommedieu….at least I may be in a better position than poor Ray Crump; his only crime was being black.  The CIA along with Cord Meyer set him up for the murder of Cords wife, Mary Meyer.

If you need more information about this cable or want to know who the French Gunman on the Grassy Knoll is, let me know.  

Oh, and please don’t try and kill me again.  It is getting a little old.  You almost got me!  Are you going to arrest Rick Torres for attempting to murder me by running me off of a cliff? 

Note:  the FBI has my entire “report” or complaint against Rick Torres attempting to murder me.  He is former Clark County Sheriff’s Sergeant.  He was witnessed by two people murdering Jason Wilkinson May 8, 2005.  Rick Torres is a killer with a badge (See Wilkinson v. Torres (2010)).  One of the eyewitnesses was threatened by the investigators (who were Torres co-workers) and the other eyewitness has never been interviewed.  The tell tale signs that the JFK murder, the DB Cooper HJ, and the Torres murder of Wilkinson all have a unifying theme, the investigations were inaccurate and incomplete.    

As for the DB Cooper case, (which I used as propaganda in order to draw attention to my plight of being ran off of a cliff by you folks) this is yet another conspiracy the the CIA and FBI have been covering up for the last 5 decades.

November 24, 1971, DB Cooper hijacked Flight 305. That same day, 3 hours prior to the HJ, Najeeb Halaby, former director of the FAA was meeting with President Nixon. At the same time, G. Gordon Liddy was meeting with AG John Mitchell.  Obviously, this was to discuss their steps after the HJ.  Of note, the FAA lost track of Flight 305 ten miles north of the Columbia River and 30 miles south of the Columbia River.  How did the Portland Air Traffic Control Towers lose flight 305 as it passed over the Portland International Airport and crossed the Columbia River.  This is the obvious jump spot that myself, Congressman Hurd and Crenshaw would have chosen as a jump spot!

Najeeb Halaby was also the lead proponent of the Boeing 2707 Supersonic Jet.  The physical evidence (tie left in the airplane) shows that the tie Howard Hunt was wearing when he hijacked flight 305 had a very rare type of titanium on it, consisting of nearly pure titanium with no alloys. This is the type used in the SSJ program, which was started by Halaby as the FAA director.  Shortly after the assassination of JFK, LBJ approved $1 Billion dollars through  executive order 11149 for the SSJ project that was surely doomed to fail.  They already attempted to build a military version in the 50s and it failed miserably.  This was another Gravina Island Bridge, only it was an executive order and a little more expensive, $7.7 Billion in today's dollars.   

Halaby, 3 months after the HJ, formed his own business to upgrade airport security after Nixon’s anti-hijacking bill was passed over a year earlier on SEPTEMBER 11, 1970.  The profit was not the $200,000 from the HJ.  The main profiteers were engineering firm Bechtel, the Rockefeller foundation, and Halaby.  They assisted internationally with the airport upgrades and policies to mesh with the new legislation passed in the September 11, 1970 anti-hijacking bill.  

You can identify Howard Hunt as DB Cooper by testing the 8 cigarettes that he smoked while on the plane…but, of course, like many anomalies in the HJ, the cigarette butts have disappeared in order to conceal the CIA and FBI involvement and keep Hunt's identity a secret.  The FBI, the world’s leading investigatory agency lost the most critical piece of physical evidence in an unsolved HJ.  Do you really believe that?  Where is the black box from the plane?   It’s gone along with the 8 cigarette butts.   Another tell-tale sign this was a ruse is the closing of the DB Cooper case July 12, 2016.  The FBI closed the case because they knew they were ramping up their cold case task force in order to solve decades old cases using DNA from third party vendors such as and 23 and me, AncestryDNA, Family Tree DNA and other private web sites.  The FBI started this task for in the latter part of 2018.  They knowingly closed the DB Cooper case in anticipation of this program coming online.  Of course, you already have the legal and ethical opinions from your attorney's about the ethics and efficacy of getting the familial DNA to prosecute these cold cases.  Obviously, there are 4th Amendment issues with this program, however it is so new that there has been no challenges to the cases as of yet.  It is abhorrent that the FBI and local LE agencies are mining these private DNA sites for familial data.  Isn't their data out of reach from the Government under the 4th Amendment.  Yet, the FBI presses on, unhindered

The Cooper HJ was a planned military type operation and Hunt jumped into the Columbia River.  After he landed, he left $5800 on the banks of the Columbia River which was eventually found in 1980.  This is what myself, Congressman Hurd, and Crenshaw would have done (another false-flag).  Obviously after the jump, Hunt (using an alias) got on an airplane and went to Long Beach, CA where he was neighbors with Don Nixon.  That was a 30-minute drive from the “Western Whitehouse” in San Clemente, CA where Nixon flew after his meeting with Halaby November 24, 1971.  

On December 6, 1971, two weeks after the HJ, Gordon Liddy, (Hunt's right hand man in planning the "dirty tricks") of the Nixon cabinet was moved to the CREEP and given a pay raise. The “Plumbers” were involved in a lot more than fixing leaks.  In order to hide their involvement and any links tying all of this together, July 12, 1973, just prior to the Rockefeller Commission hearings on the CIA's “dirty tricks” and the Church Commission hearings on MKULTRA, the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, MO was burned down. This destroyed the military records of Hunt and his co-conspirators.   The records were mostly Army records during Hunts years in the Army (Army records from 1915 through 1960 were destroyed).  It also targeted the military records of Halaby.  It isn’t a coincidence that the fire involved Air Force records up to the letter “H” (Halaby’s included). 

Also, of note, Dudley Swim, who met with Nixon October 5, 1971 was murdered (had a heart attack) on January 31, 1972.  The following day, February 1, 1972,  Swim was supposed to meet with Jon Huntsman and exchange $100,000 in cash.  He was most likely murdered using the CIA’s shellfish toxin gun.  After he was murdered his body was cremated (very rare for the early ‘70s).  He was eventually interred in 1977 in a cemetery in Twin Falls, ID.  There is no death certificate in Twin Falls, nor an autopsy report.  An exhumation and inspection of the chemicals in his ashes may signify that he has shellfish toxin in his ashes, provided they have not been switched out.    

Also of note, on October 8, 1971 (a month and a half prior to the HJ), AG John Mitchell was in Gearhart, Oregon, a town of 1400 people to give a speech to the Oregon State Bar. As congressman Hurd and Crenshaw can attest to, this is the normal MO of sending an ADVON to recon the proposed operation.  Gearhart, Oregon is approximately 30 miles down-river from where the $5800 from the HJ was found in 1980. 

The underlying theme in all of these investigations, JFK, DB Cooper, and Rick Torres murdering Jason Wilkinson is the incomplete and shoddy investigation that took place.  Many of you are attorneys.  Read the Wilkinson v. Torres case.  Combine that with your own knowledge and determine if this was a murder.   I know that Congressman Crenshaw and Hurd will find Torres own account of the murder is just not plausible.

These investigations are woefully incomplete and leave more questions than answers.  In over 50 years, there hasn't been a single mention of LBJ exchanging guns with someone 2 day before JFK was murdered.  Dandol Dianzi is not mentioned a single time ANYWHERE ON THE INTERNET OR PRINT.  Nobody questioned what Najeeb Halaby and G. Gordon Liddy were doing at the Whitehouse the day of the hijacking.  And nobody interviewed two eyewitnesses to Torres murdering Wilkinson.  How can this be?  The first thing anyone would have done is ask, why didn't Nixon call Najeeb Halaby back after he found out about the hijacking 3 hours later?  After all, he would be a great sounding board as to how to move forward.  Instead, Halaby assisted this operation by making the plane disappear as it crossed the Columbia River.  

If you are interested in learning who the “French Sniper on the Grassy Knoll” is, give me a buzz.  I do ask that you get back to me.  I think the assassination of President Kennedy by the CIA is “of great importance to the nation”.  

I look forward to your reply.


Matt L’Hommedieu 
2121 Loop Rd
Stevenson, Wa. 98648

Of course, former Navy SEAL…. like everyone else these days, and former Air Force PJ.  

PS:  Next time you try and kill me please don’t send a fucking Marine like Rick Torres again.  Send someone like either Congressman Crenshaw or Hurd…if you want it done right.  At least if you are going to kill me make it an honorable death, not one at the hands of a Marine flunky like Rick Torres. 

PPS:  I am not suicidal!  And if I die in a car accident please check the occupants of the other vehicle for mouth guards and motorcycle helmets.  I think the shellfish toxin and succyncholine are played out...and are traceable.   Also, please, please, don't tell Bill or Hillary!

Enclosure:  Dandol Dianzi cable.  

The CIA is the most existential threat to American Democracy and diplomacy.  If I were running for President, at least that is the platform I would run on!  Please, someone expose this corruption!

Sunday, July 14, 2019

FBI Has New Evidence on DB Cooper Case


When President Nixon bugged his own Whitehouse in early 1971 he could not have foresaw that a tiny microscopic piece of evidence could finally help unravel the DB Cooper case.  If you need the history of DB Cooper, Wikipedia may be your best source.  He hijacked a plane November 24, 1971 for $200,000 in cash.  It was a big deal.


The same day of the hijacking, at 14:40 EST (three hours prior to the hijacking) Najeeb Halaby walked into the Whitehouse to see President Nixon.  In Halaby’s book, Crosswinds: An Airman’s Memoir, he describes the meeting as one that surprised Nixon. In hindsight, we know that Nixon had bugged the Whitehouse.  According to Halaby, Nixon’s secretary scheduled the meeting unbeknownst to Nixon and he was upset Halaby showed up to meet him.

Halaby could not have known that his meeting with Nixon and a microscopic examination, one not capable in 1971, may be the link to solving the DB Cooper case while linking him as a co-conspirator.  

On DB Cooper’s tie was a small particle of very rare titanium.  Titanium was rare in the early ‘70s and mainly used in the aircraft industry. The type found on Cooper’s tie was even rarer.  It was almost pure titanium with no alloy.  This kind of titanium was used mainly for the SSJ (supersonic jet program) in the Boeing 2707.  

Halaby was appointed by President Kennedy to be the second FAA Director between 1961 and 1965.  Halaby was one of the biggest advocates of SSJ technology.  He advocated for Congress to appropriate hundreds of millions of dollars to subsidize Boeing in the building of the 2707 SSJ.  

Additionally, Halaby was a known parachutist and former Navy Jet pilot who made the first transcontinental jet flight out of Edwards AFB.  Edwards is the testing grounds for experimental aircraft and experimental jumping in the military.  

When Halaby met with Nixon November 24, 1971 he was the CEO of Pan Am.    Pan Am was the purchaser of the first 747.  It was christened over a year earlier with Pat Nixon, the first lady in attendance along with Halaby.  

After Halaby was released (fired) from Pan Am in 1972, he facilitated the sale of 20 Boeing 747s for $23 million each to a foreign country.  He also sold airport security equipment and services to countries trying to meet the newly passed US regulations prevent hijacking.  The new security bill was the result of hijackings by the PLO between September 6-13, 1970.  

The new bill resulted in a four-fold increase in airport security funding.  It required overseas airlines landing in the US to be compliant with current US Airport security standards.  As a result of the legislation hundreds of millions of dollars flowed into the airline industry. Ironically, the date of the bill Nixon introduced was September 11, 1970.  It was the anti-hijackingbill title Skyjacking.  Many people think 911 was due to the EMS moniker, 911.  Was 911 planned for the specific date of 911 in commemoration for Nixon’s skyjacking bill?  

Halaby positioned himself well.  He was an attorney who went on to broker the sales of aircraft, airport security equipment and write and implement airport security policy all over the globe.  

The rarity of the titanium found on the tie limits the amount of people possible that could have been DB Cooper.  Cooper had to have been in an environment where there was this rare type of titanium. The FBI concedes that the rarity of the titanium points to a Boeing employee or contractor.  At the time, Precision Cast Parts and Tektronix of Tigard and Beaverton Oregon were companies that had the rare type of titanium along with the additional radioactive elements found on the tie.  This may well explain the relationship Cooper had with Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington.    

This may also be why Cooper was never found.  The rare type of titanium and the radioactive elements on the tie point to a classified program, such as the ones flown out of Edwards AFB where Halaby departed on his first transcontinental jet flight.  If Cooper was working on a classified program, his absence the following Monday after the hijacking could not be reported to any authorities.  His absence from the classified program would have been…classified. 

Narrowing this list of suspects to people Halaby knows or worked with significantly reduces the suspect pool.  Most people have no more than a few hundred “friends” on Facebook.  Now, look at Halaby’s “Facebook” of the day.  Who were his closest confidants?  Do any of them have special forces training?  What about parachuting experience?  These simple parameters limit the number of people that could possibly be DB Cooper to a few people.  

Or is this just a coincidence that someone of Halaby’s background was meeting with Nixon the day of the hijacking.  While CEO of Pan Am, Halaby was opposed to the Concorde, the Anglo-French venture. However, for the previous decade, he was a supporter of the Boeing 2707 SSJ.  

The Boeing 2707 was scrapped after Halaby met with Nixon due to cost overruns and design flaws of the 4400 pound titanium wing support.  


The morning of October 8, 1971 Nixon met with AG John Mitchell and later, CIA director Helms. Prior to Helms entering the room, someone at the meeting mentions how scared Helms is of Howard Hunt because “he knows where all the bodies are buried”.  This is in apparent reference to Hunt’s long-term relationship with the government.  Hunt was a former CIA operative and at the time of the meeting Hunt was working for Nixon as part of the “Plumbers” (the guys fixing the leaks in the Whitehouse).  

Prior to CIA Director Helms coming into the intelligence committee meeting, Nixon can be heard mentioning the name John Meier who is Howard Hughes right-hand man.  And most people are aware of the connections between Hughes and the CIA, not to mention the $100,000 in cash Hughes gave to Rebozo to give to Nixon as a “campaign contribution”.  

Nixon was a showman, everything he did was for show.  The October 8 meeting was no different.  He makes comments such as “I know about the Iran deal and the Guatemala deal”.  In other words, he didn’t want to say it on tape, but he knew that the CIA assassinated Prime Minister Mossadegh (Iran) and President Arbenz (Guatemala).  He also mentions the Bay of Pigs deal, which later becomes a focus of the Watergate hearings.  

The crux of the meeting surrounds Nixon’s request the intelligence community share information about the Kennedy Administration and how they handled the Bay of Pigs.  And if Nixon had Hunt in his corner already, why was he asking Helms to provide him information about where all the bodies are buried. 

During the meeting Nixon is attempting to sway the intelligence community heads to share the information about the Bay of Pigs.  But Nixon already has Howard Hunt in his employ.  He knows that Helms is afraid of Hunt because he “knows where all the bodies are buried”.  

Obviously, Helms knew Hunt was on Nixon’s team.  And he knew where all the bodies were buried, so the recording of the meeting was for the benefit of all the other attendees; and to get it on tape.  The Nixon tapes were an alibi of sorts for Nixon.  

Why was Nixon meeting with Helms and Mitchell in the first place?  It should be noted that right after the meeting with the POTUS, AG Mitchell flew to Gearhart, Oregon.  It’s a town of 1400 people about 30 miles down-river from where they found the DB Cooper loot on the bank of the Columbia River.  

Three days prior to meeting with AG Mitchell and CIA Director Helms, October 5, 1971 Nixon met with another airline executive, Dudley Swim of National Airlines, Inc.  

It’s not odd that the president would be meeting captains of industry.  But hindsight is again 20/20.  Nixon arranged for Jon Huntsman (the billionaire) to deliver $100,000 in CASH to Swim on February 1, 1972 for his agreeing to be the US Ambassador to Australia. 

Unfortunately, Swim died January 31, 1972 of a heart attack…the day before Huntsman was scheduled to give Swim $100,000 in cash from Nixon.  During the Watergate hearings Huntsman recalled how close he was to being dragged into the Watergate conspiracy.  He resigned just prior to handing the bag over to Swim.  

Huntsman said giving Swim that $100,000 would have wrapped him up in Watergate scandal.  Fortunately for Huntsman, he never delivered the money and was not implicated in the Watergate cover-up.

Two days prior to Swim’s unfortunate heart attack Nixon was at his friend Bebe Rebozo’s compound in Key Biscayne, Fl.  This was a frequent spot for Nixon during his presidency.  There were no bugs placed nor were the phones tapped at Rebozo’s compound.  This was Nixon’s version of the modern day SCIF, or Secure Compartmented Information Facility.  

While in Key Biscayne, Nixon received a call from his brothers Don and Edward.  Nixon rarely received calls from his brothers.  But two days before Dudley Swim died, he was talking with his brothers in Newport Beach, Ca.  They were a 6-hour drive from San Mateo where Swim lived and eventually died from a heart attack.

The odds of these being coincidences are astronomical.  Swim met the President of the United States October 5, 1971 and then died 3 months later, one day prior to receiving $100,000 in cash from the POTUS.    

 Swim’s ambassadorship to Australia was supposedly agreed upon by Nixon in mid-December 1971.  However, the presidential log says Swim is meeting Nixon to discuss the economy and education.  There’s no mention of Swim being the Ambassador to Australia.  

Unfortunately, we will never know if Nixon truly appointed Dudley Swim to be the Ambassador to Australia. We will never know if Najeeb Halaby knew who DB Cooper was.  

An even bigger travesty, we will never be able to use the DNA from the 8 Raleigh filter tip cigarette butts DB Cooper left behind…because the FBI, the premier law enforcement agency in the world……lost them.

The DB Cooper case was closed July 12, 2016.  In 2018 the FBI started a task force that uses CODIS (Combined DNA Indexing System) with private company databases to solve cold cases. The FBI task force is solving decades old cold cases at a pace of about one per week using familial DNA from the private databases.  

Unfortunately the FBI won’t be able to identify DB Cooper using CODIS or the familial DNA to solve this caper because…the cigarette buts are gone.  Not to mention, the FBI closed the DB Cooper case July 12, 2016. 

But at least we know who orchestrated the hit on Dudley Swim.  And it wasn’t Mr. White in the library with a candlestick.  Get a clue, Tricky Dick.


Like the DB Cooper hijacking, the air traffic control tower at Midway Airport near Chicago lost tracking on United Airlines flight 553 when it crashed on approach on December 8, 1972.

In the DB Cooper hijacking Northwest Orient flight 305 was lost 8 miles north of the Columbia River and was not reacquired until it reached Salem, Oregon 40 miles south of the Columbia River.  The loss of the tracking of these aircraft during critical junctures of these flights by the Air Traffic Control Tower should be fully explained and investigated.

Or is it just coincidence that the former director of the FAA, Najeeb Halaby was meeting with President Nixon 3 hours before flight 305 was hijacked.  Nobody even asked.  


Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Exculpatory Evidence in Rick Torres Murdering Jason Wilkinson Hidden for Years

Exculpatory Evidence in Rick Torres Murdering Jason Wilkinson Hidden for Years

Officer Rick Torres murdered Jason Wilkinson, a 17 year old on Mother's Day, May 8, 2005.  The lead investigators, Detectives O'Dell and Hemstock covered up the murder of Jason and Rick Torres was never charged with murdering Jason.

A previous article released recounts the cover-up.  However, the cover-up is much more sinister than initially thought.  VPD Officer Torres resigned from Vancouver Police Department in 2006, about a year after the shooting.  This is commonplace in government agencies where there are civil service employees.  They pass along the problem to someone else.

It is unclear how Rick Torres obtained employment after the murder, however, he immediately began working for a multi-national corporation, the Lind Group.  While working for the Lind Group, Torres was sued by the family of Jason Wilkinson.  The case is Wilkinson v. Torres.  

In support of the family suing Torres, Key, the Vancouver Police Department and Chief Martinek, Anthony Davis, the eyewitness to the murder filed an affidavit remaking what he saw that day.  

The affidavit reads in part:

The November 28, 2008 affidavit states in part:

I, ANTHONY DAVIS, declare as follows:

            11.       The second officer (Torres) had is [sic] firearm drawn as he approached the minivan. As the minivan began to back up, the officer that had is [sic] gun drawn looked at the officer standing in front of the minivan.  They made eye contact and appeared to acknowledge each other.
            12.       The officer with the gun walked to the front passenger door of the minivan as it began to drive away from the officers and fired his weapon at the driver.
            13.       The van was traveling at such a slow rate of speed that the officer was able to walk in pace with the minivan as he repeatedly fired at the driver.
            14.       When the officer began to fire his weapon, the minivan was moving in almost the opposite direction from where the first officer stop.
            15.       When the officer began firing his weapon, the first officer was nowhere near the minivan’s path of travel and not in harms way.
            16.       As the officer was shooting at the driver, I could see that the driver had two hands on the steering wheel in positions of 10 and 2 o’clock.  The driver slumped back in his seat and dropped his hands to his side after being fired upon multiple times.
            17.       The officer continued to fire at the driver of the minivan as the minivan coasted slowly backwards.  The officer stopped shooting and the minivan coasted out of the yard and into the middle of the street in front of me.
            18.       The officer that had fallen was now lying on his back in the street holding his leg. It was my impression that he was resting after being hurt or that he was faking an injury.  I observed nothing during the course of the event that would cause me to believe the officer had been injured.
            19.  After having witnessed the event and not knowing what to do, I made a hand gesture to the officer laying in the street indicating that I was going to move my car. I made a u-turn and puled into the driveway of the house located directly east of the intersection of 40thAvenue and 49thStreet.
            20.       At no point during the event did it appear to me that either officer was in danger of being ran over, injured, or killed by the minivan.
            21.       I saw no reason for the police to shoot the driver of the minivan.
            22.       I made a recorded statement to police shortly thereafter and is incorporated by reference as Exhibit 1.

During Torres sojourn from law enforcement from 2006 through 2013, while he was working for the Lind Group, the lawsuit muddled its way through the system.  The presiding Judge, Benjamin Settle, ruled that Torres made conflicting statements during his internal affairs investigation into the murder.

Remarkably, with the statements by the judge depicting Torres as an unreliable, lying witness, Clark County Sheriff's Office hire Rick Torres in 2013.

Astoundingly, the City of Vancouver did not place Torres on a Brady List, which is a list of officers that have been known to make false or untruthful statements under oath.  Judge Settle determined that Torres remarks regarding the murder were conflicting.  Torres was hired with both the mar on his record for making false statements and an eyewitness account of Torres murdering Wilkinson.

The 2008 affiant, Anthony Davis was never interviewed by either Detective O'Dell or Hemstock after they threatened him.  The 2008 affidavit did not trigger an investigation in spite of Detective O'Dell documenting that he attempted to get in touch with Davis on multiple occasions.  O'Dell's final synopsis in the case does not mention Davis a single time.

In an amazing turn of events, Torres was hired by Clark County Sheriff's in 2013.  He was scheduled to testify at a trial  on August 10-12, 2016.  The person he had arrested was going to bring out the false statements made by Torres in his internal affairs testimony.  However, Torres resigned on August 4, 2016, less than a week prior to the trial.

The Prosecuting Attorney failed to disclose the affidavit of Anthony Davis to each and every defendant that Rick Torres participated in arresting after Torres murdered Wilkinson in 2005.  The lawsuit where Judge Settle deems that Torres made conflicting statements is Wilkinson v. Torres which was finally decided in 2010.  The affidavit of Anthony Davis was filed 3 years after the IA investigation was closed 2005.  The affidavit and the false statements made by Torres have been hidden from each defendant Rick Torres arrested.  Brady v. Maryland, a court case decided in 1963 requires the Prosecuting Attorney to turn over any evidence that may be helpful to a defendant.  This is further evidence that the officials in Clark County are covering up the murder of Jason Wilkinson.

Torres has returned to working for a subsidiary of the Lind Group after his 6 days notice he gave Clark County Sheriff when he resigned.  

The Clark County Prosecuting Attorney's Office will not respond to requests regarding the affidavit Anthony Davis filed in 2008 depicting the murder.  Nor will they respond to the request for information as to whether Clark County Officials have seen the affidavit of Anthony Davis.  They have also been provided the transcript of the 2019 interview of Anthony Davis and will not respond to it.

During the 2019 interview, Davis states there was another eyewitness to the murder that has never been interviewed.  The name has been withheld from CCSO and VPD.  However, both agencies have been made aware that there is another eyewitness to the murder of Jason Wilkinson.  They have not contacted anyone to find out the name of the second eyewitness to the murder.

Messages have been sent to Rick Torres's wife via Facebook asking if anything written about him is inaccurate.  She has not responded to the inquiries.  It should be noted that Torres had a LinkedIn account and I sent him a message in July of 2016 inquiring about the Wilkinson v. Torres case, but Torres has deleted his LinkedIn account.

Additionally, I have contacted him at his email address at Clark County, however, within an hour after sending him an email to his government email account, that account was shut down.  Torres was given a board member position at the Clark County Planning Commission instead of being arrested for the murder of Jason Wilkinson.  Clark County Sheriff's Office originally deemed it "justifiable homicide."  In Detective Eric O'Dell's report, he states that he tried to get a follow-up interview with Anthony Davis, and he wanted to get that before he closed the report to "set the record straight."   

Anthony Davis "set the record straight" when he filed an affidavit in 2008 in the Wilkinson v. Torres case.  Additionally, he had the fortitude to be interviewed on March 30, 2019, and recounted in a recorded interview what he saw that day.  

It's clear Clark County is covering up for this murderer.  

Detective Eric O'Dell of CCSO Attempts to Discredit Eyewitness Who Saw Fellow Officer Murdering Citizen

Clark County Sheriff Detective Eric O'Dell Attempts to Discredit Eyewitness

May 8, 2005 Anthony Davis witnessed Rick Torres walk up to the window of the van Jason Wilkinson was driving.  What Davis witnessed that day was an execution.  According to the internal affairs interview of Davis the day of the shooting, Davis account, which he reiterated on a follow-up interview on March 30, 2019 depicts the grizzly murder.  

Davis stated that he witnessed Rick Torres walk up to the passenger side of the vehicle with his weapon drawn, looks over at his partner, Officer John Key, and fires 7 rounds into Jason as the minivan was backing up.  Torres then stops, looks up at Officer Key, and fires another 4 rounds into Jason from approximately 5 feet away.

The investigation was a cover-up at the behest of Clark County Sheriff's Detective Eric O'Dell and Vancouver Police Detective Stuart Hemstock.  An internal affairs complaint has been filed with both agencies, however, neither agency has opened an investigation into the cover-up.  It is being buried by the two agencies.  

Davis describes his interaction with the officers during the months following the murder.  Davis describes how the officers repeatedly stopped by his house and attempted to get him alone and when they did, they encouraged him to change his testimony.  

When Davis returned to the scene the day after Torres murdered Jason, he was threatened by Detective O'Dell.  O'Dell called him and asked him to return to the scene and place his vehicle where it was the day of the murder, which he did.  The internal affairs investigation reports state that Detective O'Dell placed the location of Davis's car into the accident recreation program which indicated that Davis was less than 10 feet from the sidewalk.  Davis stated in his 2019 interview that he was less than 30 feet away from the vehicle that had just crashed.  

Davis states that Detective O'Dell recorded all conversations with him during his interview the day of the shooting and the day following the shooting, O'Dell videotaped Davis and his placement of Officer Torres and Officer Key when the shooting started.  

Officer Torres places Officer Key on the ground when he started shooting Jason.  Contrarily, Davis places Officer Key standing in the front of the vehicle when the shooting started.  The videotape of Davis account the day after the shooting is not in the internal affairs file.  Nor is the first interview of Davis minutes after the shooting.

Torres immediately made 4 phone calls on his cellular phone after the shooting.  Neither Detective O'Dell or Hemstock mention these phone calls in the internal affairs interview, nor did they identify who the 4 people Torres called immediately after he murdered Jason.  A public records request was filed with the VPD asking for the phone records of Rick Torres the day of the shooting.  The Vancouver Police Department responded that they have no records of Torres phone calls.  

Also troubling is the statement that he made that he was videotaped when he returned to the scene the following day.  He states that he told the officers where both Torres and Key were when the shooting started.  This would be a normal thing to do for the LE Officer in determining what transpired during the shooting.  One would obviously want to know where an eyewitness places each officer when the shooting started and when it ended. 

Instead of investigating Rick Torres, both Detective O'Dell and Hemstock turn their investigation on its head and start investigating Anthony Davis.  They pull his criminal background and begin interviewing every reporter that Davis spoke to.

Below is an email, which depicts O'Dells first attempts to discredit Davis.  The propaganda campaign started 3 days after the murder.

From:  Hemstock, Stuart
Sent:  Wednesday, May 11, 2005 4:47 PM
TO:  Rawlins, Troy; Davis, John; Prentice, Ed
Cc:  O’dell, Eric
Subject:  OIS response

We are at a loss for where this guy Anthony Davis was when officer’s arrived at the scene.

Davis insists that he had pulled over right in the middle of the shooting.  He parked his car southbound on NE 40thAve right on the corner with NE 49thStreet.  He said he nearly was facing entirely west.

The problem, however, is that Schanaker, Torres, Key and others don’t recall his car ever being there. This may have been because they were distracted by other things going n at the time, or it may have been because the car wasn’t where he said it was.

This guy Davis said that he asked an officer at the scene if he could move his car and he was granted permission.

For any of you watching news accounts on TV, Anthony Davis is the guy that is depicted wearing the white baseball cap saying the police reacted inappropriately.

Thanks for your response one way or the other.


From:  Rawlins, Troy
Sent:  Thursday, May 12, 2005 7:33 AM
To:  Hemstock, Stuart
Subject:  RE:  OIS response

I don’t recall seeing this guy anywhere in the scene, or at all.  I assisted with the suspect and Officer Key while at the scene.

Sorry about that.
Troy R.

From:  Hemstock, Stuart
Sent:  Thursday, May 12, 2005 7:39 AM
To:  Rawlins, Troy
Cc:  O’dell, Eric
Subject:  RE:  OIS response

Thanks.  It is what it is no more no less.  Nothing to apologize for, no worries.


Weeks after this email, Detective O'Dell calls another officer that was not on scene when the murder took place and asked if the officer saw Davis's vehicle where Davis placed it the day after the murder.  During the officers interview, he agrees with O'Dell that Davis's car was not where he said it was when this officer arrived on scene.

As Davis recounts in his 2019 testimony, he had just witnessed a police officer murder Jason Wilkinson, and he immediately backed his car in a driveway away from the murder scene.  Davis states that he got out of his car and started yelling to alert attention that the officer just killed Jason Wilkinson.

The Clark County Sheriff's Office will not respond to requests for comments on the case.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019


Judge Benjamin Settle's Opinion

Wilkinson v. Torres

Recounting the cover-up of the murder of Jason Wilkinson

Photo of Rick Torres May 8, 2005
Rick Torres

Resigned from VPD in 2006 shortly after shooting
Resigned from CCSO August 4, 2016 prior to this being exposed at a trial in Clark County



This matter comes before the Court on Defendant Torres’ Motion for Summary Judgment (Dkt. 25) and Defendant Key’s Motion for Summary Judgment (Dkt. 28). The Court has considered the pleadings filed in support of and in opposition to the motions and the remainder of the file and hereby denies Torres’ motion without prejudice and grants Key’s motion for the reasons stated herein.


On May 2, 2008, Plaintiffs Scott Wilkinson, Alisha White, and the Estate of Jason Scott Wilkinson filed a complaint against Defendants Rick Torres, John Key, Brian Martinek, the City of Vancouver, and John and Jane Does 1-20. Dkt. 1. At all times material to the complaint, Defendants Rick Torres and John Key were police officers for the City of Vancouver. Id. ¶ 2.3.

 Plaintiffs allege the following claims against Defendant Torres:
 Defendant Torres’ actions violated decedent’s right to be free from summary execution and punishment and deprivation of life and liberty without due process of law under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution, to be free from unreasonable search and seizure under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments and to feely [sic]
 Case 3:08-cv-05281-BHS Document 63 Filed 01/23/09 Page 2 of 18
associate with family and friends under the First and Fourteenth Amendments. Id., ¶ 6.7. 
Plaintiffs allege the following claim against Defendant Key:

 KEY was present when TORRES used the unreasonable, excessive, and deadly force, KEY knew or should have known TORRES was using unreasonable, excessive, and deadly force, and had the ability to intercede and prevent the continued use of said force; however, KEY stood by, neglected to make any effort to stop or intercede in the unconstitutional force, and explicitly and/or tacitly approved of TORRES’ use of deadly force. Id., ¶ 7.2. 

 On November 7, 2008, Defendant Torres filed a Motion for Partial Summary Judgment. Dkt. 25. On December 2, 2008, Plaintiffs responded and included a motion to strike Defendant’s references to Jason Wilkinson’s Death Investigation Toxicology Report and to his criminal history. Dkt. 43. On December 5, 2008, Defendant Torres replied and included a motion to strike material Plaintiffs submitted in support of their response. Dkt. 47. On November 7, 2008, Defendant Key filed a Motion for Summary Judgment. Dkt 28. On December 15, 2008, Plaintiffs responded and included a motion to strike the Declaration of Colleen Lines (Dkt. 34). Dkt. 49. On December 19, 2008, Defendant Key replied. Dkt. 51.


Judge Settle's opinion combines the "facts" by taking all the statements made by the officers and disregards the affidavit of Anthony Davis in its entirety.  There are two distinctly different versions of the facts in this case.  Either Officer Key was underneath the tires and he is getting chewed up by the tires of the minivan backing up, or Officer Key was nowhere near the tires when Torres started shooting.  This "combination of facts" does not comport with the law in the 9th Circuit.  "But in the deadly force context, we cannot "simply accept what may be a self-serving account by the police officer."  Scott v. Henrich, 39 F.3d 912, 915 (9th Cir.1994).  Because the person most likely to rebut the officers' version of events - the one killed - can't testify, "the judge must carefully examine all the evidence in the determine whether the officer's story is internally consistent and consistent with other known facts." Id.:  See also Gonzales v. City of Anaheim, 747, F.3d 789, 794-95 (9th Cir.1994).  This includes "circumstantial evidence that, if believed, would tend to discredit the police officer's story."  Scott, 39 F.3d at 915.

There are two completely different version of "facts" as outlined by the affidavit of Anthony Davis compared to the conflicting versions of Officer Torres and Officer Key.  

It should be noted that the Plaitiff's counsel is Beau Harlan, a former Prosecuting Attorney for Clark County.  In his submission of documents, which would create a factual dispute, the ballistics expert hired by the defense authored a report that Torres successfully moved to vacate.  This "additional evidence" has never been investigated by the investigating agency, Clark County Sheriff's Office.  

On May 8, 2005, Vancouver Police Officer John Key identified a stolen minivan with an unidentified driver inside the vehicle. Dkt. 30, Declaration of John Key (“Key Decl.”), Exh. A, Interview of John Key (“Key Interview”) at 4-5. After Officer Key yelled at the driver, the driver started the van and drove away from the scene. Id. at 5-6. Officer Key informed his dispatcher that the minivan “took off” and initiated a pursuit of the vehicle. Id. at 6.

Officer Rick Torres heard Officer Key’s communications over the radio and became concerned about the situation. Dkt. 36, Declaration of Rick Torres (“Torres

Case 3:08-cv-05281-BHS Document 63 Filed 01/23/09 Page 3 of 18

Decl.”), Exh. A, Interview of Rick Torres (“Torres Interview”) at 5-6. At the time Officer Key radioed that the stolen van had driven away, Officer Torres claims that he was approximately six blocks away from Officer Key’s location. Id. at 6-8. After Officer Key radioed the direction of the pursuit, Officer Torres waited at an intersection to intercept Officer Key and the van. Id. Officer Torres saw both vehicles approaching at a speed that wasn’t over the speed limit. Id. He had his lights on and saw that Officer Key also had his lights on behind the van. Id. Both the van and Officer Key passed Officer Torres and Officer Torres joined the pursuit. Id. at 8-9.

 It is undisputed that Officers Key and Torres followed the van for approximately three minutes over a distance of approximately two miles. Officer Torres claims that the pursuit proceeded at speeds of “maybe 10 miles over” the speed limit. Id. at 11. Officer Torres also claims that Officer Key encouraged him to perform a Pursuit Immobilization Technique (“PIT”) on the van when he had the opportunity. Id. Defendant Torres states that a PIT is a recently developed law enforcement procedure where an “police officer places his vehicle parallel and a bit behind the suspect vehicle, and bumps the rear quarter panel with the front quarter panel of his vehicle sending the suspect vehicle into a spin.” Dkt. 25 at 4.

As the van and Officer Torres approached the intersection of NE 49th St. and NE 40th Ave., Officer Torres decided that the intersection would be the “best spot to take him.” Torres Interview at 12. When Officer Torres hit the van, the van spun 90 degrees. Id. at 13-14. Officer Torres claims that the van attempted to “take off again” so he hit the van again. Id. at 14. After the second hit, the van spun off the road into a side yard. Id. at 15. As the van continued driving through the yard, Officer Torres stopped and exited his vehicle. Id. at 15-16. He claims that he saw the van attempt to maneuver through numerous trees in the yard and eventually hit a telephone pole. Id. at 16. Thomas Fries, a Traffic Accident Reconstructionist obtained by Plaintiffs, claims that the van “entered the yard, at an assumed speed of 10-12 mph, leaving tire marks for about 75 feet.” Dkt. 46,

Case 3:08-cv-05281-BHS Document 63 Filed 01/23/09 Page 4 of 18

Declaration of Thomas Fries (“Fries Decl.”), ¶ 2(b). Mr. Fries also concludes that the van “impacted the telephone pole at 12-15 mph.” Id. ¶ 2(c).

Clark County Deputy Sheriff Scott Shanaker was on patrol that day in the area of the pursuit. Dkt. 27, Declaration of Scott Shanaker, Exh. A, Interview of Scott Shanaker (“Shanaker Interview”), at 1-2. Deputy Shanaker heard the pursuit over the radio and proceeded to drive toward the pursuit. Id. He eventually reached the vehicles and saw Officer Torres’ PIT maneuver from a distance. Id. at 3. He briefly lost sight of the van, but then he saw it drive around the house and through the yard. Id. He positioned his car to block the van’s exit from the yard and, when the van compensated to avoid him, it ran into the telephone pole. Id. Deputy Shanaker positioned his car almost head-on with the van on the opposite side of the pole. Id. Deputy Shanaker observed Officer Key running toward the driver’s door of the van and Officer Torres running in from behind the van. Id.

Anthony Davis was also at the intersection when Officer Torres performed the PIT on the van. Dkt. 44, Declaration of Anthony Davis (“Davis Decl.”), Exh. A, Interview of Anthony Davis (“Davis Interview”) at 2. Mr. Davis claims that he saw the police lights, pulled over to the curb, and observed the remainder of the pursuit. Id. After the van entered the yard, Mr. Davis claims that “the cops blocked” the van in the yard, there was “no route of escape,” and two officers ran toward the van, one with his gun drawn. Id. at 3.

It is unclear whether the driver of the van was knocked unconscious when the van collided with the telephone pole. Deputy Shanaker claims that, from “the length [of] the hood of [his] car away,” it looked like the driver of the van got “knocked out.” Shanaker Interview at 3. Officer Key thought that the pursuit was over and “the car was stopped,” so when he reached the van, he grabbed the driver’s side door handle and tried to open the door. Key Interview at 12-13. At about the same time as Officer Key grabbed the door, the driver put the van in reverse. Id. at 13; Shanaker Interview at 4.

This is a photo of Officer Key after he had "fallen down".  There is a dispute as to whether Officer Key fell down, or if he was struck by the minivan as it backed up.  The officers version is that Key was struck by the van and was scrambling on the wet grass to get out from underneath the vehicle as it was running him over.  Contrarily, Anthony Davis' statement depicts Officer Key being away from the minivan as it backed up.  

This is further bolstered by the statements Torres made in the IA interview.  he stated that he saw the outline of Officer Key's vest and reacquired the target (Jason) and shot him an additional 4 times.  

Torres testified that he shot 4 times followed by another 2 times, when in reality, he fired 7 times followed by another 4 shots.  This is not "circumstantial" evidence, this is direct evidence depicting that Torres version of events was not internally consistent with the facts of the case.  However, Detective O'Dell, the lead detective, believed Torres version of events and recommended that Torres not be prosecuted for murder, and he recommended a finding of justifiable homicide.  

Case 3:08-cv-05281-BHS Document 63 Filed 01/23/09 Page 5 of 18

Both Officer Key and Deputy Shanaker remember hearing the van’s engine rev as it began to move backward away from the pole. The grass was wet and muddy that morning. Key Interview at 19. As a result, the van threw mud forward as the tires spun in reverse. Deputy Shanaker claims that the hood and windshield of his car were sprayed with mud and grass when the van started to spin its front wheels in the yard. Shanaker Interview at 4.

The next significant event was Officer Key falling to the ground. Mr. Davis claims that Officer Key “slipped on the wet grass.” Davis Interview at 5. Officer Key claims that he was knocked to the ground by the van when it began to back away from the telephone pole. Key Interview at 13. It is undisputed that the driver accelerated backwards in a counterclockwise arc. The steering wheel was turned to the right so that the front end of the vehicle swung in the direction of the driver’s side while the rear of the vehicle swung in the direction passenger side. See Fries Decl., Exh 10 (aerial sketch of  the path of the van). At this time, Officer Torres claims that he was at the passenger side, middle window of the van with his gun drawn and yelling “show me your hands.” Torres Interview at 17. Officer Torres had his left hand on the van and he could feel it moving away from him as the engine revved. Id. He could see through the windows of the van that Officer Key went down. Id.

Officer Torres claims that his immediate thought was that the front wheels of the van were going to run over Officer Key. He stated that “the front end [of the van] is moving away from me, towards right were [Officer Key] went down.” Torres Interview at 18. Officer Torres remembers “thinking [that] the wheels are on top of [Officer Key], spinning. And [he yelled] at [the driver] to stop, and [the driver] just kept going.” Id. As the van continued arcing backward, Officer Torres saw Officer Key roll out onto the street “curled up, like, in a fetal position.” Id. at 19. He remembers hearing Officer Key yell and “thought that he was dead.” Id.

This is another fiction created by Judge Settle that disregards the false statements made by Torres in the first portion of his interview.  Torres initial states he doesn't hear a thing.  After a break and an "off the record" conversation, Torres recalls Officer Key yelling as he went down.  These inconsistent statements are "disputable facts" that cannot be decided during summary judgement.  Torres own contradiction give rise to the factual dispute, particularly when you have eyewitness testimony of another witness that contradicts the "self-serving" account of Torres and Key.  (see transcribed interview of Rick Torres).

Case 3:08-cv-05281-BHS Document 63 Filed 01/23/09 Page 6 of 18

Concerned for the safety of both himself and Officer Key, Officer Torres began to fire bullets at the driver. Id. at 23. He claims that, “at some point, [he] shot . . . [he] fired at [the driver] to stop him.” Id. at 18. Officer Torres fired two volleys of bullets. Id. at 24. He initially remembered firing four bullets in the first volley, id. at 21; it was later determined that he fired seven rounds, Dkt. 25 at 10. He initially remembered firing two bullets in the second volley, Torres Interview at 18; it was later determined that he fired four rounds, Dkt. 25 at 11. There is a dispute as to the effect of the initial volley of bullets.

Officer Torres seems to contradict himself as to why he shot a second volley of bullets. At one point, he describes the situation as follows:

I thought what happened was I fired four rounds, and he kept going, and he was – and then, I fired . . . made a quick assessment, and he had stopped and I fired . . . I fired two more. That’s what I think happened. Torres Interview at 18. 

Later in the same interview, Officer Torres describes the situation as follows:

I remember it was kind of like, you know, I’m shooting . . . I was shooting like this and I came down and he was still looking at me like nothing had happened. And so, then I went back up and I think I fired two more rounds. Id. at 21.

The former description can reasonably be read to state that the driver “had stopped and [Officer Torres] fired . . . [he] fired two more” bullets, whereas the latter description states that the initial volley of bullets had no affect on the driver of the van.

Torres reason for shooting Jason another 4 times was due to the fact that he believed that the van was going to make a complete circle and run over Officer Key "again" when it made a complete circle.  According to the interview with Anthony Davis, he was videotaped when he returned to the scene the following day.  During the videotape, he places Officer Key and Officer Torres when the shooting started taking place.  Detective O'Dell does not mention videotaping Anthony Davis.  Nor does O'Dell place in his report that he stopped by Davis's residence on numerous occasions and attempted to persuade him to change his testimony.  

Mr. Davis claims that Officer Torres began to fire before Officer Key fell to the ground. Davis Interview at 7. He states that one “officer walked right up to the passenger window and started firing.” Id. at 4. Mr. Davis also claims that Officer Key fell to the ground because he slipped on the grass, which contradicts the story that the van knocked Officer Key to the ground. Id. at 5. Mr. Davis asserts that, after falling, Officer Key “jumped back up” and “jumped out of the way of the car so he wouldn’t get ran [sic] over.” Id. at 3.

 Case 3:08-cv-05281-BHS Document 63 Filed 01/23/09 Page 7 of 18

Deputy Shanaker claims that the driver was knocked out and came to at the same time that Officer Key reached the driver’s side door. Shanaker Interview at 4. He remembers seeing the driver put the van in gear and hearing the engine rev. Id. As the van began to move backwards, Deputy Shanaker decided that he should move his car in attempt to block any exit the van may have had from the yard. Id. at 7. He “turned around for just a second to make sure [he] was clear in back, because [he] was going to have to back [up] and maneuver” his car to block the van. Id. at 4. When he looked back toward the van, he saw Officer Torres with his gun “drawn out” and “he just starts shooting.” Id. Deputy Shanaker did not see Officer Key. Id. Deputy Shanaker claims that Officer Torres was “dumping rounds” as the van was “turning in a big arc backwards.” Id. at 4-5. After “three to six rounds,” Deputy Shanaker could see that the driver was “still animated at that moment . . . [he was] cognizant of what he’s doing, and then, it’s just like he’s not.” Id. at 4. Then, he saw that the van had “died down in speed” and that the driver was no longer in control of it. Id. at 5.

 Deputy Shanaker exited his vehicle, approached the driver’s side of the van, reached through the driver’s side window, and put the vehicle in park. Id. at 6. He cuffed the driver and checked for vitals. Id. He did not feel a pulse or any breathing. Id. The driver was later identified to be Jason Scott Wilkinson. Dkt. 26, Declaration of Stewart Estes, Exh. Q (“Report of Medical Examiner”). Mr. Wilkinson died from “multiple gunshot wounds.” Id.

Mr. Fries, the accident reconstructionist, claims that tire marks were left in the grass when the van was accelerating in the backwards arc. Fries Decl. ¶ 3(d).

After about 25-30' of tire marks . . . there is an abrupt difference in the texture and depth of these marks. This indicates that power is no longer being supplied to the wheels. The minivan (an automatic) continues backward at idle leaving light tire marks. Id. ¶ 3(I). 

Mr. Fries opines as follows:

The four glass patterns found on the vehicle path are most likely caused by exit bullets going out the driver’s side of the vehicle. The glass likely fell to within 1-3 feet from where the bullet penetrated the glass. 

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The glass pattern indicates three shots were fired after there was no longer power to the minivan. 

 Id. ¶ 3(h); see also id, Exh. 13 (aerial view of glass pattern in relation to the van’s tire marks and location).


 A. Plaintiff’s Motions to Strike

Plaintiffs move to strike Defendant Torres’ references to Jason Wilkinson’s Death Investigation Toxicology Report and to his criminal history. Dkt. 43 at 28. Plaintiffs argue that the legal questions before the Court turn on Officer Torres’ knowledge of Mr. Wilkinson when Officer Torres employed force against Mr. Wilkinson. Dkt. 43 at 28-29. Plaintiff concludes that Defendant’s reference to the toxicology report and Mr. Wilkinson’s criminal history have “no bearing” on the issues before the Court and are used only to “tarnish the character” of Mr. Wilkinson. Id.

Defendant counters that “Plaintiff’s drug use is relevant to his impaired and erratic driving, as is his criminal history.” Dkt. 47 at 3. If Plaintiff’s intoxication has any bearing on the questions before the Court, then the Court may consider this evidence. On the other hand, “[e]vidence of other crimes, wrongs, or acts is not admissible to prove the character of a person in order to show action in conformity therewith. ” Fed. R. Evid. 404(b). Moreover, Mr. Wilkinson had not been identified when Officer Torres decided to exercise deadly force. For the purposes of this motion, Defendant’s reference to Mr. Wilkinson’s criminal history is both inadmissible and irrelevant evidence. Therefore, the Court grants Plaintiff’s motion to strike Defendant’s references to Mr. Wilkinson’s criminal history and denies the motion to strike the reference to his toxicology report.

Plaintiff also moves to strike the Declaration of Colleen Lines. Dkt. 49 at 13-14. Ms. Lines asserts that her car was struck by the van during the pursuit. Dkt. 34, ¶¶ 2-3. Plaintiff argues that the question before the Court “centers upon the facts known to [Officer] Torres at the moment he began pulling the trigger” and that Officer Torres does not remember seeing this accident during the pursuit. Dkt. 49 at 13-14.

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The Court disagrees as only part of the Court’s analysis will depend on what Officer Torres saw during the pursuit. Therefore, the Court denies Plaintiffs’ motion to strike Ms. Lines’ declaration.

B. Defendant Torres’ Motion to Strike

Defendant Torres “moves to strike (1) unsworn and unauthenticated report of Matthew Noedel, Ex. 7 to Harlan Dec., Dkt. No. 45; and (2) Notice of Findings as to Officer Rick Torres, Ex. 6 to Harlan Dec., Dkt. No. 45.” Dkt. 47 at 1-2.

           1. Matthew Noedel Report “

A trial court can only consider admissible evidence in ruling on a motion for summary judgment.” Orr v. Bank of Am., 285 F.3d 764, 773 (9th Cir. 2002) (citations omitted). Authentication is a condition precedent to admissibility. Id. To authenticate documents that are submitted to support or to oppose a summary judgment motion through personal knowledge, the party must attach the documents to the affidavit of a person through whom the exhibits could be admitted into evidence at trial. Id. The affiant must show affirmatively that he has personal knowledge and “is competent to testify to the matters stated therein.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e).

Plaintiff has submitted a “[s]hooting scene examination and reconstruction” report by Matthew Noedel and his curriculum vitae. Dkt. 45-7. Plaintiffs, however, attached these documents to the Declaration of Beau Harlan, Plaintiffs’ attorney. See Dkt. 45, ¶ 2. Plaintiffs have neither submitted an affidavit of Mr. Noedel nor shown how these documents could be admitted into evidence through Mr. Harlan. Therefore, the Court grants Defendant’s motion to strike these documents.

This additional evidence has never been examined by the Clark County Sheriff's Office.  Neither has the affidavit of Anthony Davis.  In addition, there was another eyewitness to the shooting who has never been interviewed.  Clark County Sheriff's Office is aware that there is an additional eyewitness, yet they refuse to reopen the investigation. 

            2. Notice of Findings

Authentication is not a condition precedent for domestic public documents under seal. Fed. R. Evid. 902(1). Moreover, public documents are not excluded by the hearsay rule. Fed. R. Evid. 803(8).

 Case 3:08-cv-05281-BHS Document 63 Filed 01/23/09 Page 10 of 18

Plaintiffs submitted a document titled “Notice of Findings” that was issued under the official seal of the City of Vancouver Police Department and appears to be signed by Assistant Chief Mitch Barker. The Court declines to accept Defendant’s argument that this document is unauthenticated hearsay.

Defendant Torres also argues that the contents of the document are irrelevant based on the legal issues before the Court. Dkt. 47 at 2. The document shows that, after an internal investigation, Officer Torres initiated a pursuit of Mr. Wilkinson in violation of department guidelines. See Dkt. 45-6 at 3. Defendant asserts that “[w]hether a provision of a policy manual was violated is irrelevant to the question of whether [Mr.] Wilkinson’s constitutional rights were violated.” Dkt. 47 at 2 (emphasis in original). The Court agrees. See Case v. Kitsap County Sheriffs Dept., 249 F.3d 921, 929-30 (9th Cir. 2001). Moreover, based on the record before the Court, the decision on whether to initiate the pursuit is most likely insignificant in light of the decisions regarding whether to end the pursuit. Therefore, the Court grants Defendant Torres’ motion to strike the “Notice of Findings” because the finding that Officer Torres violated a department guideline is irrelevant to the questions of constitutional violations and qualified immunity.

C. Summary Judgment

Defendants Torres and Key move for summary judgment based on the doctrine of qualified immunity. Dkt. 25; Dkt. 28. Defendant Torres also moves for summary judgment on the grounds that “Plaintiffs parents’ claims are not legally viable.” Dkt. 25 at 12-33.

           1. Standard

This media advisory is dated May 9th, 2005.  Officer Torres was not interviewed until May 10th, 2005.  Officer Key testified on May 9th, the date of this press release.  There are no formal statements in the record that support this media release.  Contrarily, there are officers that are talking with the news media requesting they delay their broadcasts until the press release.  The media had the eyewitness account of Anthony Davis but took the advice of the IA investigative team and waited to publish anything until this press release.  

This news article depicts Jason Wilkinson as a troubled teen.  It also portrays Chief Martinek's view that tough choices need to be made in the heat of the moment by uniformed officers that had been on the force.  In essence, this is the beginning of the propaganda campaign to exonerate Torres for murdering Jason Wilkinson.  A theme that is replayed in the opinion of Judge Settle.  Obviously, the background of Jason Wilkinson is important in determining where Officer Torres was in relation to where Officer Key was when the shots rang out.  This opinion wreaks of bias and runs contrary to the opinions offered previously by the 9th Circuit.  

This article published on the 10th of May has the police version of events entirely plotted out prior to Torres testifying.  The only account that depicts these facts are the account of Torres which gave the day this article was printed.  The entire story contradicts what Anthony Davis stated to the police officers on May 8th and May 9th.  The videotape of Anthony Davis depicting where Officer Torres and Officer Key were when the shooting started is not part of the Internal Affairs Investigation.  It is not listed and an exhibit in any investigative documents nor in the court record in this case. 

The police version of events was given to the media on May 9th, 2005 prior to Officer Torres testifying.  This article either stemmed from interviews with Chief Martinek along with the Press Release dated May 9, 2005.  None of the statements made by Anthony Davis were in this article.   

Summary judgment is proper only if the pleadings, the discovery and disclosure materials on file, and any affidavits show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(c). The moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law when the nonmoving party fails to make a sufficient showing on an essential element of a claim in the case on which

Case 3:08-cv-05281-BHS Document 63 Filed 01/23/09 Page 11 of 18

the nonmoving party has the burden of proof. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323 (1985). There is no genuine issue of fact for trial where the record, taken as a whole, could not lead a rational trier of fact to find for the nonmoving party. Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986) (nonmoving party must present specific, significant probative evidence, not simply “some metaphysical doubt”). See also Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(e). Conversely, a genuine dispute over a material fact exists if there is sufficient evidence supporting the claimed factual dispute, requiring a judge or jury to resolve the differing versions of the truth. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 253 (1986); T.W. Elec. Serv., Inc. v. Pac. Elec. Contractors Ass’n, 809 F.2d 626, 630 (9th Cir. 1987).

 The determination of the existence of a material fact is often a close question. The Court must consider the substantive evidentiary burden that the nonmoving party must meet at trial – e.g., a preponderance of the evidence in most civil cases. Anderson, 477 U.S. at 254; T.W. Elec. Serv., Inc., 809 F.2d at 630. The Court must resolve any factual issues of controversy in favor of the nonmoving party only when the facts specifically attested by that party contradict facts specifically attested by the moving party. The nonmoving party may not merely state that it will discredit the moving party’s evidence at trial, in the hopes that evidence can be developed at trial to support the claim. T.W. Elec. Serv., Inc., 809 F.2d at 630 (relying on Anderson, supra). Conclusory, nonspecific statements in affidavits are not sufficient, and missing facts will not be presumed. Lujan v. Nat’l Wildlife Fed’n, 497 U.S. 871, 888-89 (1990).

            2. Qualified Immunity

“[G]overnment officials performing discretionary functions generally are shielded from liability for civil damages insofar as their conduct does not violate clearly established statutory or constitutional rights of which a reasonable person would have known.” Harlow v. Fitzgerald, 457 U.S. 800, 818 (1982). The immunity is “immunity

 Case 3:08-cv-05281-BHS Document 63 Filed 01/23/09 Page 12 of 18

from suit rather than a mere defense to liability.” Mitchell v. Forsyth, 472 U.S. 511, 526 (1985).

In resolving questions of qualified immunity, courts are required to resolve a “threshold question: Taken in the light most favorable to the party asserting the injury, do the facts alleged show the officer’s conduct violated a constitutional right?” Saucier v. Katz, 533 U.S. 194, 201 (2001). If the court finds a violation of a constitutional right, “the next, sequential step is to ask whether the right was clearly established . . . in light of the specific context of the case.” Id. This sequence, however, is no longer the mandatory procedure that a district court must implement when considering the shield of qualified immunity. See Pearson v. Callahan, 555 U.S. (January 21, 2009). The district court may “determine the order of decisionmaking that will best facilitate the fair and efficient dispostion of each case.” Id., slip opinion at 11-17.

                 a. Fourth Amendment

Plaintiffs assert that Officer Torres violated Jason Wilkinson’s Fourth Amendment right to be free from unreasonable seizure.

                          i. Constitutional Violation

 Plaintiffs’ excessive force claim is governed by the Fourth Amendment because “apprehension by the use of deadly force is a seizure subject to the reasonableness requirement of the Fourth Amendment.” Tennessee v. Garner, 471 U.S. 1, 7 (1985). “Under the Fourth Amendment, officers may only use such force as is objectively reasonable under the circumstances.” Boyd v. Benton County, 374 F.3d 773, 778 (9th Cir. 2004). “Determining whether a particular use of force is reasonable requires the fact-finder to balance the nature and quality of the intrusion on the individual’s Fourth Amendment interests against the countervailing government interests at stake.” Id. at 778-779. Accordingly, “[t]his balance must be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene, rather than with the 20/20 vision of hindsight. The need for such balancing means that summary judgment in excessive force cases should be

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granted sparingly.” Id. Consideration of “reasonableness must embody allowance for the fact that police officers are often forced to make split-second judgments in circumstances that are tense, uncertain, and rapidly evolving about the amount of force that is necessary in a particular situation.” Jackson v. City of Bremerton, 268 F.3d 646, 651 (9th Cir. 2001).

“The use of deadly force to prevent the escape of all felony suspects, whatever the circumstances, is constitutionally unreasonable.” Tennessee v. Garner, 471 U.S. 1, 11 (1985). However, if “there is probable cause to believe that [a suspect] has committed a crime involving the infliction or threatened infliction of serious physical harm, deadly force may be used if necessary to prevent escape, and if, where feasible, some warning has been given.” Id. at 11-12. “[W]hen there is objective reason to fear for one’s safety . . ., but not one’s life, then force short of deadly force might be justified; to justify deadly force, an objective belief that an imminent threat of death or serious physical harm is required.” Price v. Sery, 513 F.3d 962, 969 (9th Cir. 2008).

 In this case, taking the facts in the light most favorable to Plaintiffs, Officer Torres fired three bullets at Jason Wilkinson “after there was no longer power to the minivan.” Fries Decl. ¶ 3(h). There at least exists a question of fact whether Mr. Wilkinson posed an “imminent threat of death or seriously bodily harm” when the van stopped accelerating. Further, it is undisputed that when Officer Torres fired, the van was always moving in a backward direction away from Officer Key. Although Defendant Torres argues that “it was obvious to any reasonable person that [the van] would come right back towards Officer Key,” Dkt. 47 at 12, the van would have had to avoid both the telephone pole as well as Officer Shanaker’s vehicle before it could have threatened Officer Key. Moreover, the record contains evidence that, while Officer Torres was shooting at Mr. Wilkinson, Officer Key had reached his feet and was “out of the way of the car so he wouldn’t get ran [sic] over.” See supra.

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Therefore, the Court denies Defendant Torres’ motion for summary judgment on the issue of whether his use of deadly force was reasonable. The Court finds that questions of fact exist as to whether Mr. Wilkinson posed an imminent threat throughout the shooting that would justify the use of deadly force.

                       ii. Clearly Established Constitutional Right

The next step under Saucier in determining if Officer Torres is protected by qualified immunity, is to ascertain if Mr. Wilkinson’s constitutional right was clearly established at the time of the injury. Saucier, 533 U.S. at 201. In excessive force cases, the inquiry is whether “under the circumstances, a reasonable officer would have had fair notice that the force employed was unlawful, and whether any mistake to the contrary would have been unreasonable.” Boyd, 374 F.3d at 781; Drummond v. City of Anaheim, 343 F.3d 1052, 1060 (9th Cir. 2003).

When viewing the facts in the light most favorable to Plaintiffs, a reasonable officer would have had fair notice that deadly force was not justified to seize Mr. Wilkinson after the van was no longer under the control of Mr. Wilkinson. The very issues of fact that preclude summary judgment on the constitutional right question also preclude summary judgment on the fair notice question: was it reasonable for Officer Torres to believe throughout the shooting that Mr. Wilkinson posed an imminent threat of death or serious bodily harm? If Officer Torres observed Officer Key jumping up and moving away from the van, then Officer Torres should not have shot at a van moving in the opposite direction. Most importantly, the trier of fact could conclude that Officer Torres shot at the driver of a van that was no longer under power and that a coasting van did not pose a risk of death or serious injury to either Officer Torres or Officer Key.

Therefore, the Court denies Defendant Torres’ motion for summary judgment on the issue of whether Officer Torres violated a clearly established constitutional right.

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                b.  Failure to Intercede

Plaintiffs assert that liability attaches to Officer Key because he “had the ability to intercede and prevent [Officer Torres’] continued use of” force. Complaint, ¶ 7.2. The Supreme Court determined that officers do have a duty to intercede as follows:

when the State takes a person into its custody and holds him there against his will, the Constitution imposes upon it a corresponding duty to assume some responsibility for his safety. [An] affirmative duty to protect arises . . . from the limitation which [the state] has imposed on his freedom to act on his own behalf.  

United States v. Reese, 2 F.3d 870, 887-88 (9th Cir. 1993) (citing DeShaney v. Winnebago County Dep't. of Soc. Servs., 489 U.S. 189, 199-200, (1989)). A “special relationship” which includes a duty to protect arises when the state has taken the person into custody. Id. at 888; Ting v. United States, 927 F.2d 1504, 1511 (9th Cir. 1991).

In the Rodney King case the Ninth Circuit acknowledged that “[p]ursuant to a long line of civil cases, police officers have a duty to intercede when their fellow officers violate the constitutional rights of a suspect or other citizen.” United States v. Koon, 34 F.3d 1416, 1447 n. 25 (9th Cir. 1994), vacated in part on other grounds by Koon v. United States, 518 U.S. 81 (1996). Citing to several out-of-circuit cases, the Ninth Circuit noted that:

 the constitutional right violated by the passive defendant is analytically the same as the right violated by the person who strikes the blows. Thus an officer who failed to intercede when his colleagues were depriving a victim of his Fourth Amendment right to be free from unreasonable force in the course of an arrest would, like his colleagues, be responsible for subjecting the victim to a deprivation of his Fourth Amendment rights. 

 Id.; see also Reese, 2 F.3d at 890 (determining that a defendant officer was liable for not intervening when reasonable steps could have prevented the excessive force, and when the defendant “deliberately chose not to act”). However, “officers can be held liable for failing to intercede only if they had an opportunity to intercede.” Cunningham v. Gates, 229 F.3d 1271, 1289 (9th Cir. 2000) (emphasis added).

Defendant Key argues that Officer Torres did not violate Mr. Wilkinson’s constitutional right and, therefore, he had no duty to intercede to prevent the use of

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unreasonable force. Dkt. 28 at 11. The Court, however, has found that there exists material questions of fact regarding whether Officer Torres’ use of deadly force violated Mr. Wilkinson’s constitutional right to be free from unreasonable seizure. See supra. Thus, the Court will only address Defendant Key’s argument that he did not have a reasonable opportunity to intercede.

Plaintiffs argue that, taking the facts “in the light most favorable to Plaintiff, [Officer] Key had ‘a reasonable opportunity’ to stop [Officer] Torres from” using deadly force against Mr. Wilkinson. Dkt. 49 at 13. This conclusion is unsupported by the record. It is undisputed that Officer Key either fell down or was knocked down by the van. It is also undisputed that Officer Key was sprayed with mud from the tires of the van as it accelerated backwards, away from Officer Key. Although the record is unclear as to the period of time that may have elapsed between when Officer Key allegedly reached his feet and when Officer Torres began to shoot at Mr. Wilkinson, it is unreasonable to conclude that, in that period of time, Officer Key should have interceded to prevent Officer Torres from firing his weapon. Moreover, this is not a situation where Officer Key could be considered a tacit collaborator. See O’Neill v. Krzeminski, 839 F.2d 9, 12 (2nd Cir. 1988) (“three blows were struck in such rapid succession that [the other officer] had no realistic opportunity to attempt to prevent them.”). Officer Torres shot in rapid succession with a short pause between the two volleys of bullets. It is unreasonable to place a duty on Officer Key to assess the situation in that amount of time, conclude that shooting the driver would have been an unreasonable use of deadly force, and then somehow intercede to prevent Officer Torres either from continuing to fire the first volley of bullets or from not firing the second volley of bullets.

Therefore, the Court grants Defendant Key’s motion for summary judgment because he did not have a reasonable opportunity to intercede in Officer Torres’ use of deadly force against Mr. Wilkinson.

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                c. Due Process

Plaintiffs Scott Wilkinson and Alisha White assert that Officer Torres violated their Fourteenth Amendment due process right to associate with their son, Jason Wilkinson. “[A] parent has a constitutionally protected liberty interest under the Fourteenth Amendment in the companionship and society of his or her child ” Curnow v. Ridgecrest Police, 952 F.2d 321, 325 (9th Cir. 1991). The Supreme Court has made it clear that only official conduct that “shocks the conscience” is cognizable as a due process violation. See County of Sacramento v. Lewis, 523 U.S. 833, 846 (1998).

In Lewis, the Court recognized the police officer’s dilemma:

 A police officer deciding whether to give chase must balance on one hand the need to stop a suspect and show that flight from the law is no way to freedom, and, on the other, the high-speed threat to everyone within stopping range, be they suspects, their passengers, other drivers, or bystanders. 

Id. at 853. In such cases, a plaintiff “must demonstrate that [the officer] acted with a purpose to harm [the suspect] that was unrelated to legitimate law enforcement objectives.” Porter v. Osborn, 546 F.3d 1131, 1137 (9th Cir. 2008). A purpose to harm may be found in the “rare situations where the nature of an officer’s deliberate physical contact is such that a reasonable factfinder would conclude the officer intended to harm, terrorize or kill.” Id. at 1141 (quoting Davis v. Township of Hillside, 190 F.3d 167, 174 (3d Cir. 1999) (McKee, J., concurring)).

The parties do not dispute that this standard of culpability was clearly established at the time of the shooting in 2005. Thus, whether Officer Torres is entitled to qualified immunity on summary judgment turns on whether Plaintiffs can present facts that would justify a jury finding that Officer Torres acted with an unconstitutional purpose to harm Jason Wilkinson. See Porter, 546 F.3d at 1140.

Defendant argues that Plaintiffs must show that Officer Torres “intended to harm the parent-child relationship.” Dkt. 25 at 32. Defendant concludes that Officer Torres is not liable because Plaintiffs cannot show that he was “aware that Jason Wilkinson had a

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relationship with his parents.” Id. Defendant has provided no binding authority for this proposed element of liability. Neither the Supreme Court in Lewis nor the Ninth Circuit in Porter included actual knowledge of the parental relationship as an element of the constitutional violation. Defendant’s argument is therefore without merit.

Plaintiffs argue as follows:

 Taking the facts in the light most favorable to the plaintiffs, there is no question that Torres acted with the unconstitutional purpose to harm, terrorize and in fact, kill Wilkinson. After Key walked to the front of the minivan and the minivan began to back away from the telephone pole, Key and Torres looked at each other, seemingly acknowledged each other; then Torres walked to the passenger side of the minivan and effectively executed Wilkinson by shooting him eleven times at close range. Torres shot Wilkinson when the minivan was traveling at a slow speed in the exact opposite direction from where Key stood. Even after Wilkinson dropped his hands from the steering wheel and slumped in the driver’s seat mortally wounded, Torres continued to fire into Wilkinson as the minivan coasted in reverse.

Dkt. 43 at 27. Based on this version of the events, which is supported by admissible evidence, a reasonable factfinder could conceivably conclude that Officer Torres intended to harm, terrorize or kill Jason Wilkinson and therefore acted beyond the scope of a legitimate law enforcement objective. Therefore, the Court denies Defendant Torres’ motion for summary judgment on Plaintiffs’ claim against him for violation of constitutional due process.


 Therefore, it is hereby ORDERED that Defendant Torres’ Motion for Summary Judgment (Dkt. 25) is DENIED without prejudice and Defendant Key’s Motion for Summary Judgment (Dkt. 28) is GRANTED.

 DATED this 23rd day of January, 2009. BENJAMIN H. SETTLE United States District Judge

Below is the synopsis of the shooting authored by Clark County Sheriff's Detective Eric O'Dell.  The synopsis is not dated, and the only signifying mark is MC 784


On 05-08-05 at approximately 1118 hours, while on routine patrol, Officer John Key came across a suspicious van parked in the 3400 block of "T" street and ran the license plate.  Officer Key learned the van was a confirmed stolen vehicle,.  When Officer Key gave verbal commands to the driver, the driver concealed himself inside the van.  While waiting for backup units to arrive, the van was started and took off at a high rate of speed.

Officer Key activated his emergency lights and siren and followed the van as it drove North on "t" street to 39th Street, where it failed to stop for the traffic control sign..  The van went West on 39th Street to "P" street, North on "P" and onto State Route 500, Eastbound.  Officer Torres joined the pursuit and took the lead as the van turned North onto St. Johns Road.  The van travels North to 49th Street where when it turns East, the van fails to negotiate the turn and goes onto the sidewalk and into the Westbound lane of travel, the van collided with a vehicle that was West on NE 49th Street and stopped for the traffic signal.  (Accident Report #S05-6570).

The van continued East on 49th Street at a high rate of speed to the T intersection at NE 40th Avenue.  When the van slows at the intersection, Officer Torres attempts two PIT (Pursuit Intervention Technique) maneuvers on the van.  The van spun 180 degrees and was now traveling through a resident's yard and headed back West.  Deputy Schanaker had arrived in the area and placed his patrol car to block the van from re-entering onto 49th street.  The van attempted to go around Deputy Schanaker's car and ran head on into a utility pole.

The van struck the utility pole with such force it lead Officer Key to believe the driver was unconscious.  Officer Key had stopped his car at the N/W corner of the intersection of 49th Street and NE 40th Avenue.  Officer Torres had stopped his car where the van had entered into the car.  Both officer approached the van on foot.  Believing this was now a medical situation Officer Key did not haves weapon drawn as he approached the driver's side of the van.  Officer Torres, with his weapon drawn, approached from behind and went to he passenger side of the van and had his weapon drawn.

The driver of the van put the transmission in reverse and was attempting to flee.  The vans tires were spinning in the grass and mud as the van lurched backwards and toward the side that Officer Key was on.  Officer Key was struck by the vehicle and knocked him to the ground.  Officer Torres heard Officer Key yell out, but Officer Key had disappeared from his sight.  Officer Torres, believing that Officer Key was being run over by the van, fired his weapon at the driver.  Officer Torres recalled firing two separate volley's of rounds.  The second volley came after eh first volley appeared to have no effect on the driver and as the van made a  tight turn in reverse and appeared to. be heading in the directions where Officer Key had scrawled to the edge of the grass next to the roadway.

Officer Torres fired 11 rounds at the driver of the van until he slumped at the wheel.  The van continued rolling backwards, striking deputy Schanaker's patrol car and then was pinned to a stop by Officer Rawlins patrol car.  Officer Rawlins had just arrived on scene.

The driver of the van was transported to Emanuel Hospital where he succumbed from his gunshot wounds.  Officer Key was transported to SWWMC where he was treated for injuries to his left knee and hip.


Officer Torres fired a total of 11 rounds in two separate volleys.  He fired until he felt the threat towards Officer Key was no longer present.  Officer Torres acted within the guidelines of RCW 9A.16.020 Use of Force and it is recommended that this case be cleared as a Justifiable Homicide in accordance with RCW 9A.16.040.

The telephone pole the van crashed into is marked by the grey icon.  From the previous pictures of the tire tracks, the van would have had to make more than a 360 degree turn, and back over Officer Key, who was supposedly underneath the tires of the vehicle east of the grey icon.  Torres testimony as to why he felt the need to shoot a second volley of shots into Jason Wilkinson was due to the fact the van was going to make a complete circle and run over his partner, who was in the middle of the street at the time the second volley of shots were fired, according to Torres.  Torres recounts seeing the outline of the back of Officer Key's vest, signifying he was no longer (if ever) underneath the tires of the minivan as it backed up.  

Torres account is nonsensical and illogical, in addition to being contradictory, as Judge Settle points out in his opinion.  

Anthony Davis places Officer Key in the street on the other side of the curb in the picture.  Torres states he shot Jason an additional 4 times due to the fact he believed the minivan was going to make a complete circle and run over Officer Key again.  This picture depicts where the van ended up after the shooting.  The van would have had to miss the police car and telephone poll in order to hit Officer Key who was in the middle of the street next to the grey curb.  The videotape taken the following day by Detective O'Dell when he interviewed Anthony Davis is not in the IA record.  Apparently this videotape is missing and is not mentioned in the IA investigation.  Nor is the placement of Officer Key noted when the shooting started.  

The recent interview of Anthony Davis on 3.30.19 and the statements he made the day of the shooting do not place Officer Key under the tires to the minivan.  Torres version of events that the vehicle was going to run over Officer Key "again" was a convenient fiction for his reasoning of pumping another 4 rounds into Jason Wilkinson.  

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