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Saturday, August 11, 2018


Any of my regular readers already know that I fully support Law Enforcement. Some might say to a fault, but I think most people would also agree that I am fair in my support. I have posted both the good and the bad of actions by Hartford Police Officers.

Sergeant Steve Barone was a somewhat difficult call. Although I don't agree 100% with his tactics, mostly the "overtime" comment regarding the paperwork comment if he shot someone. His other comments I find less objectionable and recognize as a tactic to control a potentially dangerous situation.

Did he violate anyone Civil Rights? No. Was he discourteous to anyone in the vehicle? No, and actually he seemed to be quite professional in dealing with individuals in a car that , according to the confidential informant, had guns on them. Combine that with the fact that I am told two individuals fled from the car when Barone pulled up. Does anyone looking at this objectively think that possibly they might have been the subject of the CI's information  and ran taking their guns with them.

It is also aggravating that Mayor Bronin is inserting himself in Police matters much more frequently lately. What was the reason for the hastily called meeting in the Mayor's Office Friiday morning and the press release later in the day. wouldn't it have served a better purpose for the Mayor and Council President to issue a statement that they heave full confidence in Chief Rosado and HPD to fully investigate the matter and wait for the final report. As another interference of Mayoral interference, should Bronin really be ordering HPD officers away from an ICE protest recently at the Federal building because the Police presence "looked bad" being live streamed on Facebook?

In this current climate, if there was no visible police presence and "alternative" protestors or white supremacists or whatever we are calling them these days happened to show up and ICE protestors were injured because there were no HPD presence, I can fully see Chief Rosado and HPD being thrown under the bus by Bronin. I doubt that he would stand in front of the media and take blame for his police meddling.

The attached video is actual Police Bodycam video with real cops facing real life and death daily issues.

Watch how fast these situations can go bad, especially when an officer is by himself or herself. And listen to the officer in the bodycam video when he approaches the suspects in the car that he believes have guns on them. At one point he tells the suspect to keep his hands in sight  or listen at 1:41 as the Officer says "I will blow your f***ing  brains out"   He didn't mention his itchy trigger finger or the overtime for reports if he had to shoot them, but maybe he should have because they eventually pulled a gun on the officer and he returned fire and shot them. And he probably wasn't suspended either, except for the shooting investigation

Police work is not always pretty and requires quick judgments by our Officers to hopefully go home at the end or their shift alive. As Sergeant Barone assessed the situation do you think he was gullible enough to believe the story that the people were in front of the property at 10:00pm for a potential real estate transaction on the abandoned property. Or do you think maybe he was seeing the red flags for people parked in high crime  and high drug traffic area reportedly with guns in their possession

Considering the number of guns Sergeant Barone and other HPD Officers take off our streets everyday, I for one am not opposed to a little subterfuge or whatever you want to call it to maintain
control of a situation

Or does our Mayor and Council  President (and some media reporters) expect our officers to have to wait to see the muzzle flash and the red hot lead hitting their bullet proof vests before they act.

Would that be the more polite thing to do?

I will hopefully be posting real bodycam video regularly so people can actually see what goes on during these high stress situations and gain a better understanding of what goes on out in our streets

As a note, HPD bodycams should be in use by October.

Friday, August 10, 2018


They say there are always two sides to every story. The other side may not change the outcome, but it might be important to a better understanding of a situation..

Today, a video is quickly making the rounds of a Hartford Police Sergeant and comments he made captured on a recording.  Lets start from the beginning of the story and see if this makes any more sense.

Hartford Police Sergeant Stephen Barone received information from a Hartford Police Detective. The detective related to Barone that he had a confidential informant who provided information that there was a group of people hanging out at an abandoned building  in the area of Hazel Street and Capitol Avenue in Hartford. At least one of the people in the group , according to the CI had a gun on them.

Sergeant Barone responded to the area and located a vehicle in front of the abandoned property. Barone, who was by himself until his backup arrived, approached the vehicle and as he did, two men apparently took off running. Barone apparently attempted to control the situation by containing the remaining individuals in the car.

The red flags for Barone as a Police Officer approaching a potential gun situation , alone, on a dark side street must have been flying high.

Barone, probably trying to act like a tough police officer  trying to show that he was in charge of the situation, used language that can't be considered as acceptable in this day and age..Barone is quoted as saying "Anybody who wants to fight or run, I’m a little trigger happy guys, I’m not gonna lie. You know I could [get] a ton of money on overtime if I have to shoot somebody"

Assistant Chief Rafael Medina sent the following e-mail out to HPD's Community partners soon after the incident was revealed:

To our community partners:


I wanted to reach out to you as soon as possible to discuss a very troubling interaction one of our officers had in the community that came to our attention this morning.  During a field interview of a group of people, our officer was evidently recorded telling the group that they would be checked for drugs and weapons, and that if they tried to flee or fight, he was “a little trigger happy, I’m not going to lie,” and he didn’t want to have to shoot somebody if they did flee or fight, so they shouldn’t “do anything stupid.”  We are still investigating the circumstances of the field interview.


Regardless of the context or the intent, those statements are entirely unacceptable and represent a fundamental disregard for the conduct we expect and the standards we hold ourselves to.  We look at it from the perspective of the person on the other end of the field interview, and to hear those words isn’t just scary, it projects an image of law enforcement officers who take use of force lightly.  As I hope you know, we do not take any use of force lightly as a Department. 


We have placed the officer on administrative leave effective immediately, and internal affairs has already begun an investigation.


The Hartford Police Department has worked closely with many of you to build a stronger relationship with the community based on respect and trust.  The ties we have built are our most valuable asset in serving the community, and incidents like this do not represent the department we strive to be, the relationship of trust we’ve worked to build, or the work we do in our community on a daily basis.  We are committed to true community policing and true community partnership, and in this case that means being fully transparent and direct about this incident.


Please feel free to reach out to me to discuss this or anything else.  I will be available today and over the weekend.  My cell number is              .


Thank you. 


Rafael Medina 

Assistant Chief of Police

Now I will be the first to admit Sergeant's Barone's comments were inappropriate but without seeing the full context of the interaction is it appropriat5e because a TV reporter wants to sensationalize the incident for "exclusive" ratings

Rushing to judgement on incidents like these are unfair to both our community as well as to the Officer involved. I think we all have enough confidence in our Police Department to know that matters such as this will be handled and dealt with appropriately once all of the facts are in A rush to judgement because of a quickly called meeting in the Mayor's Office will most likely do more harm than good.

Again, until we start hiring robots as Police Officers we still have Police Officers protecting us who are human beings, subject to the same frailties and faults as the rest of us/ And because we are human beings, sometimes that filter between our brains and our lips just don't engage quick enough and stupid things are said, This isn't the first time and surely won't be the last, but how we deal with it could mean a lot to Police /community relations.

Thursday, August 9, 2018


The heat is being turned up on the Connecticut State Treasurer's race and it has nothing to do with our current heatwave.

Shawn Wooden, the endorsed Democratic candidate, recently released a television add claiming his indignation over investments in the gun industry apparently made  by our current Treasurer, Denise Nappier. Wooden claimed further indignation by claims that he lost a family member to gun violence. Now let me say that any life lost to gun violence is tragic, but I think Wooden needs to be a little more transparent regarding the death of his family member.

Every action we take everyday has potential consequences, and any involvement with the drug trade increases the odds of being a victim of those consequences. Intruding on another drug dealers "turf" is not usually taken lightly and many times ends up with fatal consequences.

Last night I received an e-mail from someone affiliated with the campaign of Wooden's opponent , Dita Bhargrava, who seemed to show that Wooden\s history of indignation  with investments in the gun industry is only a recent development. The e-mail claims that Wooden has invested funds he handled through his current employer for the New Jersey State Public Pension Fund with  Black Rock Credit Investors. Black Rock apparently invested heavily with gun manufacturers, despite Wooden's indignation.

Here is the body of Dita Bhargrava\s e-mail:

I’m sending this email because I want to make sure you have all the facts. My opponent Shawn Wooden does not have the right experience to be Connecticut’s next State Treasurer.

During his tenure as Hartford’s City Council President, Shawn showed poor judgment and disregard for the people of his own city.

Shawn let Hartford slide toward financial bankruptcy, which is costing Connecticut taxpayers over half a billion dollars to bail out .

He pushed through the over-budget, disastrous Dunkin Donuts Stadium deal, and he even allowed a loophole in the living wage law preventing Connecticut residents from earning a living wage.

What’s worse even, is that Shawn touts his skill representing the NJ State Public Pension Fund with a $400 million investment in BlackRock Credit Investors. But what he doesn’t mention is that he engineered an additional investment into BlackRock — $144 million — to bail it out. The NJ Pension fund sustained $800 million in losses as a result of his risky investment. Nearly a billion dollars lost by Shawn Wooden. But Shawn’s firm collected millions of dollars in fees.

What’s equally disturbing about Shawn’s investment, is that BlackRock is among the biggest shareholders of gun manufacturers.

It’s completely misleading when you push an investment of half a billion dollars in gun manufacturing one year, then turn around and tell us you’re going to divest in guns now that you’re running

for office. It’s this kind of hypocrisy that people have come to expect from career politicians and what they’re voting against this year.
If Shawn is willing to mislead people in his campaign ads, how could we possible trust him with $32.5 billion in Connecticut’s funds?
- Dita

I know who I would trust to be telling the truth, and it most likely wouldn't be Shawn Wooden

Wednesday, August 8, 2018



It boggled my mind when Luke Bronin tapped Hartford's Fire Chief Reginald Freeman to also fill in as Hartford's DPW Director to fill a vacancy almost two years ago.

Freeman came in to restore order to a troubled Hartford Fire Department that had been rocked by scandals, bad behavior and negative publicity. By most accounts I think he has held up his end of the bargain.

It made no sense to me that Mayor Bronin would then dilute Freeman's efforts by asking him to run a Department that probably had more than enough of its own problems at DPW. And even though Freeman was doing double the work to bail out his boss, Reggie\s paycheck apparently didn't  reflect his  double duty.

It is also confusing as to why we pay high priced salaries for "Deputy Directors" if those Deputies can't be called upon to run the Department short term when needed. Or are the Deputy slots just a way of hiding away friends  you want to reward with a City paycheck and great benefits?

There is no way a position such as the Director of Public Works should be left open for two years.

There is also no reason that the Hartford Fire Chief should be expected to fill in for both slots for two years or longer.

Reggie Freeman has shown that he is more than capable  to manage multiple, demanding tasks, and he has been a shining star  for the people of Hartford. Maybe shining a little too bright for an Administration that seems to have been  having trouble getting any light out from under its own self imposed bushel basket.

Reggie Freeman needs to return to his FULL TIME role as Hartford's Fire Chief and continue to do what he is best at and Luke Bronin  needs to concentrate on an finally building Administration that is not constantly  losing people. Our current Mayor seems to be unable to find and keep qualified people.

Bronin's turnover at Hartford City Hall would probably rival that of the Trump White House.


It would be nice to have Hartford people representing us in Constitutional Offices at the State level.

But we can't just elect people because of where they live or who they know. Shawn Wooden's run for Treasurer is the perfect example.

Wooden may be able to pull off a con job with slick television ads, but all any voter has to do is look back on the "fine" job he did of nearly bankrupting the City of Hartford during his tenure as Council President. Will Shawn  Wooden use the same "due diligence" that he used when approving the Dillon Stadium deal and the Dunkin Donuts Park financing deal? If he does, get the Grand Jury room ready because it will be a revolving door.

Wooden couldn't even recognize a phony Barclay's letter of credit from a poorly drafted fax and now voters are expected to give him control of the State of Connecticut's finances? City resident's did a better job of digging into and exposing the con job than Wooden did.

Se what people are saying in the ad below from his challenger.