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Indiana officers suspended for arrest of possible candidate they thought was anti-cop - The Washington Post

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Two Indiana officers were suspended after a stunning courtroom revelation that police thought a potential town council candidate was anti-police and arrested him, stopping him from running for office.

During a July 19 hearing, Franklin County Prosecutor Chris Huerkamp dropped charges that included drug possession against Trevin Thalheimer after an officer and witness recounted how Brookville police talked about Thalheimer. Huerkamp, who also did not pursue a rape charge police had investigated, said he was “disturbed beyond words” by the alleged police conduct and reported the incident to the Indiana State Police, which launched a criminal investigation. The transcript of the hearing was made public Monday.

Brookville Police Chief Terry Mitchum and the investigating officer, Ryan Geiser, were suspended with pay from the nine-person force Thursday by the town’s council, which ordered them to stay away from other officers and town property. The council installed an interim chief in a brief emergency meeting and said it would begin searching for a permanent replacement.

Thalheimer said he decided not to run in the May 3 primary race for town council since the arrest rocked his hometown of 2,500 people and consumed his life. Immediately after he got out of jail, where he was held for about an hour, he said he couldn’t leave his bed. He said he felt he had been “destroyed” by the criminal charges, which exacerbated his depression and anxiety.

“I have a bad taste in my mouth about politics,” he said. “I knew politics was dirty, but I didn’t know I’d have to dumpster dive.”

The town council president, Curtis Ward, said there has been no finding of wrongdoing and noted the presumption of innocence in criminal cases. Mitchum and Geiser did not respond to requests for comment.

The controversy comes after Brookville police have not worn body cameras, which the town council could require. Huerkamp said they are the only full-time agency in the jurisdiction without any recording devices.

The news also coincides with federal prosecutors charging police officers who shot and killed Breonna Taylor with falsifying information, drawing attention to past cases when police misled judges who signed off on search warrants.

After his arrest, it took months before the hearing that cleared Thalheimer’s charges.

During the hearing, Elise Whittamore, a friend of Thalheimer, testified that Geiser called to ask her to run for the seat herself. He mentioned Thalheimer’s interest in the race, saying, “We don’t want him on the town board because he hates cops.” Three days later, Thalheimer was arrested.

“I was upset,” Whittamore said about reading in the local news that Geiser arrested Thalheimer.

Shortly after calling Whittamore, Geiser said he investigated a report from Thalheimer’s neighbor that items in his house were stolen and that Thalheimer was supposed to watch the house. Geiser went to Thalheimer’s house and spoke with Thalheimer’s roommate and alleged that he smelled marijuana. He returned with a search warrant Jan. 30 and arrested Thalheimer because of drugs allegedly found there but also for a months-old rape allegation that a prosecutor had said he wasn’t able to substantiate.

Geiser testified that another officer had told him there was new DNA evidence, but Geiser didn’t know what that was, and he wasn’t an officer on the investigation.

He also said he didn’t recall mentioning Thalheimer to Whittamore, but he said that he thought Thalheimer did not like police, and that the police chief was “not a huge supporter” of Thalheimer. The police chief ordered Thalheimer’s arrest, Geiser said.

“From everything that I’ve heard throughout the law enforcement community is that he wasn’t a fan of law enforcement,” Geiser said of Thalheimer.

Huerkamp cross-examined Geiser, asking him how he came to the “unusual” step of lodging a rape charge without seeing DNA evidence or consulting anyone in the prosecutor’s office.

“Did that make you feel uneasy that your department was — I mean, didn’t this case feel just a little bit too close to you considering, you know, what was going on?” the prosecutor asked.

“Yeah,” the officer said.

“Okay. And yet, today is the first time that a lot of this is coming out to the surface, isn’t it?” Huerkamp asked.

Indiana State Police spokesman Stephen Wheeles declined to comment further about the criminal investigation, saying it’s “in its earliest stages.” If state police find any employees of the Brookville Police Department committed a criminal violation, charges would be filed with the Franklin County Prosecutor’s Office, or a special prosecutor could be appointed.

Thalheimer said he is looking into pursuing a civil rights claim against the police department, at a time when the Supreme Court has made it easier to sue police over wrongful arrests. Thalheimer said he had never considered himself anti-police before this experience. He said he and his criminal defense attorney, Judson McMillin, have wondered whether the police were concerned that he would have been in favor of requiring officers to wear body cameras.

McMillin said Thalheimer is not his only client to face false or exaggerated charges. Still, he said it’s highly unusual that the prosecutor stepped in to stop the case as Huerkamp did, in a legal maneuver McMillin said he had seen just twice in 20 years. Huerkamp said this is the first time he joined a defense motion to suppress charges.

“That’s the scary part, is that these things are happening everywhere,” McMillin said.

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mareino
8 days ago
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suspended with pay for framing a felony -- which would put a civilian in prison for a decade
Washington, District of Columbia
ReadLots
8 days ago
I really would like someone to explain to me what the difference is between "suspended with pay" and "vacation"
deezil
8 days ago
One of them charges your PTO bank for hours consumed.
acdha
8 days ago
I recognize that some jobs do increase the odds of bad-faith lawsuits but it seems like there's a very simple solution: suspend them with pay with the requirement that it's paid back in full unless they're found completely innocent, something like the inverse of how SLAPP statues allow a judge to recognize that the case was unfounded.
acdha
8 days ago
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Washington, DC
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Scientific Field Prefixes

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Massage: Theoretical (10), Quantum (6), High-energy (2), Computational (1), Marine (1), Astro- (None)
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mareino
10 days ago
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BRB, reading marine theology
Washington, District of Columbia
jlvanderzwan
10 days ago
"Wait a minute, this is all Avatar 2 fanfiction!"
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3 public comments
ReadLots
10 days ago
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I'm quitting everything and becoming a high-energy theologist!
dforbes42
10 days ago
There are plenty of practitioners of high-energy theology. Should be a fascinating, possibly disturbing, field of study
shacktoms
9 days ago
Back when journalists were calling the Higgs boson the "God particle", did that count as high-energy theology?
ReadLots
9 days ago
I, in my esteemed and self appointed position as chief high energy theologist, wouldn't have called it a 'God Particle', but a 'God Sub-Atomic Trinity' based that it can be a wave, a particle, and a theory all at the same time. Three is one, one is three.
fxer
10 days ago
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Marine Theologists sooo close to getting it.
Bend, Oregon
jepler
10 days ago
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turns out paleooncology is a thing
Earth, Sol system, Western spiral arm

Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal - Weird

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Click here to go see the bonus panel!

Hovertext:
If you've ever watched a scientist scowl at an excel spreadsheet for 16 hours in a single sitting, you'll wonder where this whole concept of loving your work ever came from.


Today's News:
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mareino
15 days ago
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This is deeply true for me. I don't love the energy industry. But my god, do I have opinions about transmission regulation.
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GaryBIshop
15 days ago
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So true!

How Tunneling in New York is Easier Than Elsewhere

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I hate the term “apples-to-apples.” I’ve heard those exact three words from so many senior people at or near New York subway construction in response to any cost comparison. Per those people, it’s inconceivable that if New York builds subways for $2 billion/km, other cities could do it for $200 million/km. Or, once they’ve been convinced that those are the right costs, there must be some justifiable reason – New York must be a uniquely difficult tunneling environment, or its size must mean it needs to build bigger stations and tunnels, or it must have more complex utilities than other cities, or it must be harder to tunnel in an old, dense industrial metropolis. Sometimes the excuses are more institutional but always drawn to exculpate the political appointees and senior management – health benefits are a popular excuse and so is a line like “we care about worker rights/disability rights in America.” The excuses vary but there’s always something. All of these excuses can be individually disposed of fairly easily – for example, the line about worker and disability rights is painful when one looks at the construction costs in the Nordic countries. But instead of rehashing this, it’s valuable to look at some ways in which New York is an easier tunneling environment than many comparison cases.

Geology

New York does not have active seismology. The earthquake-proofing required in such cities as Los Angeles, San Francisco, Tokyo, Istanbul, and Naples can be skipped; this means that simpler construction techniques are viable.

Nor is New York in an alluvial floodplain. The hard schist of Manhattan is not the best rock to tunnel in (not because it’s hard – gneiss is hard and great to tunnel in – but because it’s brittle), but cut-and-cover is viable. The ground is not going to sink 30 cm from subway construction as it did in Amsterdam – the hard rock can hold with limited building subsidence.

The underwater crossings are unusually long, but they are not unusually deep. Marmaray and the Transbay Tube both had to go under deep channels; no proposed East River or Hudson crossing has to be nearly so deep, and conventional tunnel boring is unproblematic.

History and archeology

In the United Kingdom, 200 miles is a long way. In the United States, 200 years is a long time. New York is an old historic city by American standards and by industrial standards, but it is not an old historic city by any European or Asian standard, unless the standard in question is that of Dubai. There are no priceless monuments in its underground, unlike those uncovered during tunneling in Mexico City, Istanbul, Rome, or Athens; the last three have tunneled through areas with urban history going back to Classical Antiquity.

In addition to past archeological artifacts, very old cities also run into the issue of priceless ruins. Rome Metro Line C’s ongoing expansion is unusually expensive for Italy – segment T3 is $490 million per km in PPP 2022 dollars – because it passes by the Imperial Forum and the Colosseum, where no expense can be spared in protecting monuments from destruction by building subsidence, limited by law to 3 mm; the stations are deep-mined because cut-and-cover is too destructive and so is the Barcelona method of large-diameter bores. More typical recent tunnels in Rome and Milan, even with the extra costs of archeology and earthquake-proofing, are $150-300 million/km (Rome costing more than Milan).

In New York, in contrast, buildings are valued for commercial purposes, not historic purposes. Moreover, in the neighborhoods where subways are built or should be, there is extensive transit-oriented development opportunity near the stations, where the subsidence risk is the greatest. It’s possible to be more tolerant of risk to buildings in such an environment; in contrast, New York spent effort shoring up a building on Second Avenue that is now being replaced with a bigger building for TOD anyway.

Street network

New York is a city of straight, wide streets. A 25-meter avenue is considered narrow; 30 is more typical. This is sufficient for cut-and-cover without complications – indeed, it was sufficient for four-track cut-and-cover in the 1900s. Bored tunnels can go underneath those same streets without running into building foundations and therefore do not need to be very deep unless they undercross older subway lines.

Moreover, the city’s grid makes it easier to shut down traffic on a street during construction. If Second Avenue is not viable as a through-route during construction, the city can make First Avenue two-way for the duration. Few streets are truly irreplaceable, even outside Manhattan, where the grid has more interruptions. For example, if an eastward extension of the F train under Hillside is desired, Jamaica can substitute for Hillside during construction and this makes the cut-and-cover pain (even if just at stations) more manageable.

The straightforward grid also makes station construction easier. There is no need to find staging grounds for stations such as public parks when there’s a wide street that can be shut down for construction. It’s also simple to build exits onto sidewalks or street medians to provide rapid egress in all directions from the platform.

Older infrastructure

Older infrastructure, in isolation, makes it difficult to build new tunnels, and New York has it in droves. But things are rarely isolated. It matters what older infrastructure is available, and sometimes it’s a boon more than a bane.

One way it can be a boon is if older construction made provisions for future expansion. This is the most common in cities with long histories of unrealized plans, or else the future expansion would have been done already; worldwide, the top two cities in such are New York and Berlin. The track map of the subway is full of little bellmouths and provisions for crossing stations, many at locations that are not at all useful today but many others at locations that are. Want to extend the subway to Kings Plaza under Utica? You’re in luck, there’s already a bellmouth leading from the station on the 3/4 trains. How about going to Sheepshead Bay on Nostrand? You’re in luck again, trackways leading past the current 2/5 terminus at Flatbush Avenue exist as the station was intended to be only a temporary terminal.

Second Avenue Subway Phase 2 also benefits from such older infrastructure – cut-and-cover tunnels between the stations preexist and will be reused, so only the stations need to be built and the harder segment curving under 125th Street crossing under the 4/5/6.



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mareino
15 days ago
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Washington, District of Columbia
satadru
17 days ago
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New York, NY
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i’m at the grocery store. they have so much fucking food here

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i’m at the grocery store. they have so much fucking food here




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mareino
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Bolt Mobility has vanished, leaving e-bikes, unanswered calls behind in several US cities | TechCrunch

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Updated: Article updated to add the city of Richmond, Virginia and Montgomery County, Virginia also confirming service has ended there. 

Bolt Mobility, the Miami-based micromobility startup co-founded by Olympic gold medalist Usain Bolt, appears to have vanished without a trace from several of its U.S. markets. 

In some cases, the departure has been abrupt, leaving cities with abandoned equipment, unanswered calls and emails, and lots of questions.

Bolt has stopped operating in at least six U.S. cities, including Portland, Oregon, Burlington, South Burlington and Winooski in Vermont and Richmond, California and Richmond, Virginia, according to city officials. Some city representatives also said they were unable to reach anyone at Bolt, including its CEO Ignacio Tzoumas.

TechCrunch has made multiple attempts to reach Bolt and those who have backed the company. Emails to Bolt’s communications department, several employees and investors went unanswered. Even the customer service line doesn’t appear to be staffed. 

Bolt halted its service in Portland on July 1. Because of the company’s failure to provide the city with updated insurance and pay some outstanding fees, Portland subsequently suspended Bolt’s permit to operate there, according to a city spokesperson. 

Bolt zooms then stalls

Bolt Mobility (not to be confused with the European transportation super app also named Bolt) was on what appeared to be a growth streak about 18 months ago. The company acquired in January 2021 the assets of Last Mile Holdings, which owned micromobility companies Gotcha and OjO Electric. The purchaser opened up 48 new markets to Bolt Mobility, most of which were smaller cities such as Raleigh, North Carolina, St. Augustine, Florida and Mobile, Alabama. 

After purchasing Last Mile’s assets, Bolt agreed to continue as the bike-share vendor in Chittenden County, Vermont, including cities Burlington, South Burlington and Winooski.

That license was even renewed in 2022, said Bryan Davis, senior transportation planner of the county. 

“We learned a couple of weeks ago (from them) that Bolt is ceasing operations,” Davis told TechCrunch via email, noting that Bolt ceased operations July 1, but actually informed the county a week later. “They’ve vanished, leaving equipment behind and emails and calls unanswered. We’re unable to reach anyone, but it seems they’ve closed shop in other markets as well.”

Sandy Thibault, executive director of Chittenden Area Transportation Management Association, told the Burlington Free Press that Bolt communicated that employees were being let go and the company’s board of directors was discussing next steps.

A spokesperson at Burlington relayed similar information.

“All of our contacts at Bolt, including their CEO, have gone radio silent and have not replied to our emails,” Robert Goulding, public information manager at Burlington’s Department of Public Works, told TechCrunch.

Davis went on to say that about 100 bikes have been left on the ground completely inoperable and with dead batteries. Chittenden County has given Bolt a time frame in which to claim or remove the company’s vehicles, otherwise the county will take ownership of them.  

Bolt also appears to have stopped operating in Richmond, California, according to Richmond Mayor Tom Butt’s e-forum. 

“Unfortunately, Bolt apparently went out of business without prior notification or removal of their capital equipment from city property,” wrote Butt. “They recently missed the city’s monthly meeting check-in and have been unresponsive to all their clients throughout all their markets.”

Butt went on to say that the city is coming up with a plan to remove all the abandoned equipment — about 250 e-bikes that were available at hub locations like BART stations and the ferry terminal — and asked people to refrain from vandalizing the bikes until the city could come up with a solution. 

Service has also ended in Richmond, Virginia. The city confirmed that Bolt Mobility’s permit with the City of Richmond ends today, August 1, 2022.

“The city was informed June 7, 2022 that Bolt Mobility would be ceasing their operations in the City of Richmond (Virginia),” a company spokesperson said in an email. “Scooter companies operate on an annual permit, Bolt paid all its fees with the City of Richmond on August 1, 2021.”

The Roanoke Times recently reported that Bolt’s bikeshare service, operated under the name RoamNRV, has been inoperable in Montgomery County, where the university Virginia Tech is located, since July 6. Representatives from the town of Blacksburg, where most of Bolt’s service was located, could not be reached in time for comment, but the local outlet reports that there are signs posted where the bikes are parked stating they’re not operational.

TechCrunch has reached out to several other cities in which Bolt operates and has not been able to confirm that the company has stopped operating entirely. In fact, a spokesperson from St. Augustine told TechCrunch Bolt’s bike share was running as usual.

Bolt’s social media has also been rather inactive in recent weeks. The company hasn’t posted on Instagram since June 11 or on Twitter since June 2. 

The last time TechCrunch heard from Bolt was nine months ago when the company was peddling its in-app navigation system that it dubbed “MobilityOS.” At the time, the startup promised that its next generation of scooters would include a smartphone mount that would double as a phone charger, but it’s unclear if those scooters ever hit the streets. 

Bolt has publicly raised $40.2 million, an amount that doesn’t include an undisclosed investment from India’s Ram Charan Company in May. Investors there could not be reached for comment.

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mareino
16 days ago
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We are going to need major legal changes to grapple with this strange new business model of just abandoning everything on a whim.
Washington, District of Columbia
satadru
7 days ago
It's clear that they should have done the proper thing, which is to spin-off a company specifically for the purpose of soaking up all the liability and responsibilities, and then have _that_ company declare bankruptcy.
acdha
16 days ago
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