DETROIT ASSISTANT POLICE CHIEF WALTER MARTIN ALLEGEDLY USED HIS POSITION TO GET HIS NEPHEW [BENNIE SCOTT] OUT OF JAIL.
On March 05, 2005, Scott had been arrested for ramming his vehicle into his ex-girlfriend's car, as she was driving [with thier child in the backseat]. Scott was arrested for felonious assault.
Instead of having to wait for an arraignment before a Judge, Uncle Walter Martin [a.k.a. the Detroit Assistant Police Chief], called the jail and had Bennie Scott released within hours of his arrest.
Cop says superior abused his power
March 18, 2005
Detroit Free Press
A Detroit police officer filed a departmental complaint Thursday against Assistant Police Chief Walter Martin, claiming Martin used his rank to get his nephew out of jail recently.
Officer Reginald Crawford of the aviation unit is asking the Police Commission to investigate the matter internally.
"This type of behavior is the epitome of corruption and abuse of power," Crawford said.
Martin called the 11th (Davison) Precinct lockup March 5 after learning his nephew, Bennie Scott, was being held on a domestic violence-related charge. Officers released Scott after Martin said he did not think there was probable cause to hold him.
Prosecutors charged Scott with assault with a motor vehicle, a felony, a day later
COP SAYS NEPHEW'S RELEASE DIDN'T CROSS LINE
ASST. CHIEF: NO PROBABLE CAUSE TO HOLD HIM
By Ben Schmitt
Free Press Staff Writer
March 10, 2005
http://www.freep.com/news/locway/martin10e_20050310.htm Bennie Scott sat in a Detroit police lockup Saturday, prepared to spend the night on a felony allegation of ramming his car into his ex-girlfriend's vehicle as she drove in it with their young child.
Then his uncle called.
Before long, Scott walked out of his cell, a free man.
His uncle: Detroit Police Assistant Chief Walter Martin, the department's second-in-command.
On Wednesday, Martin -- who has risen rapidly through the department's ranks -- defended his actions, insisting he did not use his clout to get Scott out of jail.
Though Martin was not at the scene, he said, an officer read him the report over the phone. He concluded there was not probable cause to hold Scott.
Prosecutors came to another conclusion.
They interviewed the woman the following day and issued a charge of felonious assault with a motor vehicle.
Scott, 32, of Detroit turned himself in and was arraigned Monday in Detroit's 36th District Court. He posted 10 percent of a $75,000 bond to be released.
"Personally, I say that I did not do anything wrong," Martin said Wednesday. "Domestic violence cases are very tricky. I'm not going to release someone and jeopardize the safety of the young lady."
Nonetheless, the woman, 24, called police Sunday morning to report that Scott had begun calling her home after his release. She told police she did not answer the phone, but he continued to call and she feared for her safety.
The woman declined comment and asked that her name not be published.
The incident began with two police runs Saturday afternoon.
Police went to the woman's northeast Detroit home on a disturbance call from a neighbor at 12:30 p.m. because of an argument between Scott and the woman after Scott dropped off their 23-month-old son.
The woman told police she wanted Scott to leave. Police told him to do so, and he obeyed. Officers then left.
Less than 20 minutes later, the woman called police from her cell phone and said that Scott had rear-ended her 1999 Ford Taurus, which she told prosecutors was transporting the child. No one was injured. Police met the woman at Van Dyke and Outer Drive and advised her to call Scott.
Scott drove to the intersection and was taken into custody.
Police towed his 2002 Chrysler Sebring and noted there was no damage to either vehicle.
Assistant Chief Martin said his sister, Scott's mother, called him about the arrest.
Police logs obtained by the Free Press show that Martin called the 11th (Davison) Precinct, where Scott was being held, at 10:45 p.m. Saturday and spoke to an officer on duty.
"I was looking at probable cause," he said. "Based on what was read to me, this did not look like a felonious assault with a motor vehicle. There was no damage done to either vehicle."
The logs indicate Scott was to be released after Martin called. But there was one holdup: Scott owed $420 in unrelated traffic tickets. By 11:25 p.m., another family member paid the tickets and Scott left the lockup.
Scott declined comment Wednesday.
Maria Miller, spokeswoman for Prosecutor Kym Worthy, explained that staff members interviewed the woman, which is office protocol for people suspected of being domestic violence victims.
Worthy declined comment Wednesday.
Martin, speaking Wednesday of his nephew, said: "He's charged now. He's going to have his day in court. I'm trying to fight crime. I'm not trying to be involved in personal incidents with my family."
In 2002, Scott was charged with two counts of felonious assault and one count of using a firearm in commission of a felony in another incident with another woman. A Wayne County Circuit Court jury later acquitted him.
Martin, who joined the force in 1978, has prospered since Ella Bully-Cummings took over as police chief in November 2003.
In April 2004, he was promoted from the rank of inspector to commander. Seven months later, after Assistant Chief Harold Cureton retired, Martin skipped the rank of deputy chief and was promoted to assistant chief.
He has worked as a project manager for a new police headquarters and as a City Council liaison. He has reformatted the department's computer statistics forum known as CompStat.
Martin oversees the investigations portfolio, which includes major crimes, internal affairs and narcotics.
The department usually has two assistant chiefs, but Walter Shoulders retired last month and has not yet been replaced.