Thursday, November 3, 2005

Officer Ronald Dupuis - Hamtramck PD - Tasered female partner while on duty - 11/03/2005






Nov. 3, 2005: Officer Ronald Dupuis was criminally charged for discharging a Taser stun gun and striking his female partner, Officer Prema Graham, in the leg with the weapon. [Hamtramack PD]











Michigan cop with troubling history accused of imprisoning two women for days with no charges
byWalter Einenkel
FRI APR 24, 2015 AT 11:50 AM PDT
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/04/24/1380049/-Michigan-cop-with-troubling-history-accused-of-imprisoning-two-women-for-days-with-no-charges#


Highland Park Officer Ronald Dupuis is in trouble—again. This time it is a lawsuit from 2 women claiming he detained them for 4 days without charging them. The 2 women, Rhianna Turner and Kera Hill are domestic partners, they are represented by attorney Robert Morris:

Morris says in September of 2013 – Turner was working as a uniformed Detroit Parking Enforcement Officer.  While she was stopped in front of the old Detroit police headquarters at 1300 Beaubien, Hill showed up.  They were playfully wrestling over a set of keys when a nearby by Sheriff’s deputy feared that Hill was assaulting Turner.

Officer Dupuis came in to see what was the problem. Well, that sounds reasonable.

Despite the couple’s explanations that were was no assault – Morris says Dupuis arrested them.

“The fact that he actually took them to Highland Park, which has no jurisdiction with anything that could have occurred in Detroit, and he was able to convince his supervisors, who were already skeptical and didn’t understand why my clients were locked up – he was actually able to override their authority and keep my clients for four days,” Morris says.

They were never charged with a crime – but Morris says getting locked up cost Turner her job with the city.

That's not good. But, it's a he said she said situation here, right? Here's a video that was posted by Emma Craig on her Facebook page back in January. It shows Officer Dupuis beating a handcuffed suspect, facedown in the snow.

The suspect in that video may very well be a pretty crap human being but it isn't up to police officers to deal out punishment. Here is a report from when Officer Dupuis accidentally shot himself.

And here is Ronald Dupuis's history as a law enforcement officer, care of Detroit Free Press:

■ In 2012, a woman sued Dupuis, alleging he refused to let her use the restroom while she was in a jail cell — thus forcing her to urinate in her cell — and later "began to choke her" and began to call her vulgar names. The lawsuit was dismissed in 2013 because the plaintiff did not provide sufficient documents to the defense.

■ In 2004, while working as a Hamtramck police officer, Dupuis was sued by a man who alleged Dupuis wrongfully arrested him and had him jailed for no reason. The man was released without being charged. His lawsuit was settled for an undisclosed amount.

■ In 2006, Dupuis sued the city of Hamtramck after a female officer accused him of assaulting her with a Taser. He was fired as a result of the accusation, but was later acquitted on the assault charge. He ended up suing the city over his firing and its handling of the assault accusation. The case was settled.

■ In 2008, Dupuis sued the city of Hamtramck a second time over the Taser complaint, alleging the city had a duty to defend him in that lawsuit. That case was dismissed.

■ In 2012, Dupuis filed an employment discrimination lawsuit against the city of Highland Park, alleging he was treated unfairly compared to his African American counterparts and that he was unfairly demoted in the police department. The lawsuit was dismissed in 2013.

Oh yeah, he resigned from the Southgate Police department back in the 2000s. It was in that same department he was reprimanded, in 1998, for allegedly assaulting a mentally disabled man...and stalking a woman, repeatedly pulling her over.

Innocent until proven guilty. But the police employment system that keeps him employed seems very guilty.


















VIDEO: What Does It Take To Fire A Bad Cop? Just Ask Ronald Dupuis
By MintPress News Desk
Minneapolis, MN
April 17, 2015
http://www.mintpressnews.com/what-does-take-to-fire-a-bad-cop-just-ask-ronald-dupuis/204481/

Ronald Dupuis, a police officer from Highland Park, Michigan, has a record of questionable -- and even outright bad -- behavior dating back to the 1980s. These decades of missteps don’t seem to be hampering his career, though.

With almost daily reports of brutality and fatal shootings of unarmed black people by police, activists in America are asking why officers so rarely face lasting consequences for their actions.

With almost daily reports of brutality and fatal shootings of unarmed black people by police, activists in America are asking why officers so rarely face lasting consequences for their actions.

When Darren Wilson left his post with the Ferguson Police Department, crowdfunding efforts raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for the man who killed unarmed teenager Michael Brown. Investigations into Wilson’s past revealed that he’d first been employed by a Missouri police force that was disbanded for corruption.

A similar pattern emerged in the recent slaying of Walter Scott. Writing for Counter Current News, Jackson Mariana reported that Scott’s killer, North Charleston Police Officer Michael Thomas Slager, had a history of violent incidents:

“Back in 2013, Mario Givens, an African American North Charleston man, had been ‘roughed up’ when Slager came to his door, demanding to be let in ‘as part of an investigation.’”

North Charleston Police have faced 46 federal lawsuits since 2000.

But few cops can match the checkered past of Sgt. Ronald Dupuis, the officer from Highland Park, Michigan, who remains employed despite a string of incidents that have followed him through multiple departments. Highland Park is the seventh police force to employ Dupuis.

A new lawsuit alleges that Dupuis held two women in jail without charges for four days. Shockingly, the incident didn’t even begin in Highland Park, where Dupuis is employed as a cop and where he allegedly imprisoned the two women, “Rhianna Turner and her domestic partner Kera Hill.” Instead, Dupuis is accused of intervening in an incident in Detroit.

In September 2013, a sheriff’s deputy witnessed the pair “playfully wrestling over a set of keys,” and intervened because he feared an assault had occurred. Although both women denied a crime had occurred, Dupuis arrived on the scene, arrested the two women, and took them to jail in nearby Highland Park. Though no charges were filed, Turner lost her job as a Detroit Parking Enforcement Officer.

Just this past January, Dupuis made headlines when he was videotaped beating a man suspected of carjacking.

“The video of the arrest, which was recorded by Detroit resident Emma Craig on Monday on the city’s northwest side and posted on Facebook, shows Dupuis striking the suspect several times while apparently trying to handcuff him and administering a final blow after Jackson’s hands were secured behind his back,” reported George Hunter in The Detroit News.

In 2012, Dupuis was hospitalized for shooting himself in the leg with his own gun, which discharged accidentally outside a cell block. Another incident involved him choking a woman he had in custody.

He was previously fired from the Hamtramck, Michigan, Police Department for using a taser on his own partner. Although a jury declined to convict him for it, courts refused to force the city to reinstate Dupuis, which is how he ended up employed by Highland Park.

ReneƩ Harrington, creator of the Michigan Officer Involved Domestic Violence Project, compiled a lengthy timeline of Dupuis-related incidents dating back to 1997. According to the timeline, the Southgate, Michigan, Police Department fired him in 1999 for stalking a woman and repeatedly pulling her over.

Because there is a lack of national data on police violence in general, it is difficult to determine how often police face consequences for their crimes. But in 2013, Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey estimated that 90 percent of officers fired from the Philadelphia Police Department force were later rehired through arbitration with police unions — even those accused of crimes including shoplifting and sexual assault.
















Highland Park cop recovering from gunshot wound has long history of being in the spotlight
Heather Catallo
6:33 PM, Feb 10, 2015
WXYZ News - Detroit
http://www.wxyz.com/news/local-news/investigations/highland-park-cop-recovering-from-gunshot-wound-has-long-history-of-being-in-the-spotlight


Highland Park, MI - A Highland Park police officer is now out of the hospital, after he was shot in the leg. This isn’t the first time this particular officer has had a gunshot wound on the job, and it’s not the first time he’s made news.

As a swat team prepared to raid a home on Candler Street in Highland Park Monday night, they broke a front window to throw in a flash-bang device. That’s when a suspect inside the home fired out the window, hitting Sgt. Ronald Dupuis in the leg.

“A projectile came from the residence in which the search warrant was being executed and struck the officer,” said Highland Park City Attorney Todd Russell Perkins. Perkins said the police department is not releasing the officer’s name, but our sources confirm that it was Sgt. Dupuis who got shot Monday night.

Dupuis has a long history of making headlines.

He’s worked for 7 different local police departments, first coming to the attention of the 7 Investigators in 2005.  That’s when Dupuis was a Hamtramck police officer.  He was charged with assault for using his Taser on his partner in their patrol car. A jury found him not guilty, but he was fired from the department.

In 2012, Dupuis shot himself in the leg outside the Highland Park cell block. That was ruled an accident.

Just last month, Dupuis’s name surfaced again when he was seen in video of officers punching, kicking and handcuffing a carjacking suspect.

The Michigan State Police are about to present their findings in that investigation to the Wayne County Prosecutor.

Dupuis has also been the subject of several federal lawsuits, some with police misconduct allegations. He’s also sued both Hamtramck and Highland Park regarding employment issues. Most of the cases were settled or dismissed.

“He’s back with the department, and he likes being here, and we’ve liked having him here,” said Perkins.

“Why does his name keep coming up,” asked 7 Investigator Heather Catallo.

“I can’t speak to that, but I’ve continuously as a lawyer-- I do not draw the conclusions because his name is coming through the news media… to draw a conclusion as to some bad conduct, or to some impropriety,” said Perkins. He also points out Dupuis has never been convicted of a crime.

“So does he just have bad luck,” asked Catallo.

“Well, being a police [officer] -- is something that I wouldn’t find myself doing, and it’s a dangerous job,” said Perkins.

Two people have been arrested in connection with Monday’s shooting. The accused carjacker from the incident that was caught on camera has filed a lawsuit against Sergeant Dupuis and the City of Highland Park. 

The Michigan State Police were supposed to meet with prosecutors Tuesday about that case, but the shooting investigation delayed that meeting.

















Officer seen in video has troubled past
By Gina Damron and Tresa Baldas
Detroit Free Press
11:18 a.m. EST January 15, 2015
http://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/detroit/2015/01/14/officer-arrest-video/21771801/

One of the police officers involved in an arrest caught on video has had a career embroiled in controversy, with accusations of using a Taser on a former partner and assaulting a mentally disabled man.

The video, which surfaced on Facebook and is now under investigation by the Michigan State Police, shows police punching, kicking and handcuffing a 51-year-old parole absconder, who is accused in the carjacking of a mother and her two children Monday. One police official has called the officers' actions on Detroit's west side "proper."

One of the officers in the video is Highland Park Sgt. Ron Dupuis, Highland Park city attorney Todd Perkins confirmed to the Free Press today.

According to U.S. District Court records, Dupuis — listed as Ronald Dupuis II — is no stranger to the courts, though he has never been convicted of any crimes.

Over the last decade, his tumultuous law enforcement career has triggered a half-dozen civil suits in U.S. District Court — half of them he filed himself over employment disputes; the others involve police brutality accusations.

An attorney who has previously represented Dupuis in civil lawsuits, could not be immediately reached for comment today.
His legal troubles include:
■ In 2012, a woman sued Dupuis, alleging he refused to let her use the restroom while she was in a jail cell — thus forcing her to urinate in her cell — and later "began to choke her" and began to call her vulgar names. The lawsuit was dismissed in 2013 because the plaintiff did not provide sufficient documents to the defense.

■ In 2004, while working as a Hamtramck police officer, Dupuis was sued by a man who alleged Dupuis wrongfully arrested him and had him jailed for no reason. The man was released without being charged. His lawsuit was settled for an undisclosed amount.

■ In 2006, Dupuis sued the city of Hamtramck after a female officer accused him of assaulting her with a Taser. He was fired as a result of the accusation, but was later acquitted on the assault charge. He ended up suing the city over his firing and its handling of the assault accusation. The case was settled.

■ In 2008, Dupuis sued the city of Hamtramck a second time over the Taser complaint, alleging the city had a duty to defend him in that lawsuit. That case was dismissed.

■ In 2012, Dupuis filed an employment discrimination lawsuit against the city of Highland Park, alleging he was treated unfairly compared to his African American counterparts and that he was unfairly demoted in the police department. The lawsuit was dismissed in 2013.

Also, the Free Press reported in 2006 that, in 1998, Dupuis was reprimanded by the Southgate Police Department after being accused of assaulting a mentally disabled man. Also while in Southgate, Dupuis was accused of stalking a woman and repeatedly pulling her over. He resigned from the department after being told he would be fired.

On Monday, officers with ACTION, a stolen vehicle task force, arrested a man suspected in a carjacking that occurred earlier that day.

Police have not named the man, but the Michigan Department of Corrections identified him as Andrew Jackson, Jr., who, according to the state's online offender system, was sentenced to prison in 2004 on charges of conspiracy to commit armed robbery, assault with intent to rob while armed and fleeting police. According to the corrections department he absconded from parole in April 2014.

The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office said today it received a warrant request for a 51-year-old man, whose name was not provided, in connection with a carjacking that occurred on Evergreen on Monday. According to the office, the warrant is being reviewed and a charging decision has not yet been made.

Attorney Ben Gonek, who said he is representing Jackson, said his client has a "serious eye injury."

Gonek declined to discuss the carjacking accusations. Of the arrest, he said "it's pretty outrageous."

"There's no doubt in my mind that it was excessive force," said Gonek, who previously sued Dupuis, his partner and the city of Hamtramck on behalf of a man who said he was beaten during a traffic stop in 2002. The lawsuit was settled for $20,000.

The task force that made the arrest in Monday is made up of officers from Detroit, Grosse Pointe Park, Highland Park and Harper Woods. Detroit police have said none of their officers were involved in the incident. Detroit police spokesman Sgt. Michael Woody said Tuesday that the officers involved were from Highland Park and Grosse Pointe Park.
On Tuesday, Chief David Hiller, with the Grosse Pointe Park Department of Public Safety, told the Free Press that the actions of the officers in the arrest were "proper."

Hiller declined to comment when reached today. Highland Park Police Chief Kevin Coney could not be immediately reached for comment.

Highland Park city attorney Todd Perkins said that, in addition to cooperating with the state police investigation, Highland Park is also looking at the arrest, which has drawn scrutiny since a citizen posted a video on Facebook.

In the video, one officer yells at the man after he calls for "Jesus," telling him "Don't you dare," and another officer can be heard saying "that's a justified ass whooping."

Perkins said the city will look into the incident.

"I represent the people of the city of Highland Park and, in representing the people, you have to give them transparency," he said.

The incident drew out about a dozen protesters earlier today, who gathered outside of the Grosse Pointe Park police headquarters.

"This is the kind of thing that can ignite something," said Ron Scott, with the Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality. "We're here on a peace mission. We're saying, 'If you don't deal with us, then there are a lot of people out here who are not gonna take the time to demonstrate.'"

"We also call for criminal and civil penalties for officers who have engaged in these actions," Scott said in the statement, adding, "We are calling for suspension of these officers until this matter is resolved."

















Taser officer wins another round against the city of Hamtramck
Hamtramck Star
by Hillary
09/25/06 04:09:32 pm
http://hamtramckstar.com/index.php?s=Dupuis&sentence=AND&submit=Search

The city of Hamtramck (MI) has lost a third legal bout to fired police officer Ronald Dupuis. Dupuis was falsely accused of tasering his partner, Officer Prema Graham, in November 2005.

A Hamtramck jury quickly acquitted Dupuis of criminal assault charges.

Even though Dupuis was found not guilty of the charges, the city refused to reinstate him. The city through its attorneys, the Allen Brothers P.C., also contested Dupuis' Unemployment Compensation Claim.

That claim eventually lead to a hearing in front of an administrative law judge. The judge ruled that Dupuis was entitled to unemployment benefits and that as a finding of fact that "The claimant performed a "function test" of his taser while he was in the passenger seat of the patrol car and did not tase his partner."

Dupuis was given a check for over $5,000 in unemployment compensation. The city filed for a rehearing, which was denied by the judge. Facing that defeat, the city then appealed to the Michigan Unemployment Security Board of Review.

Dupuis latest victory came, late last month, in the form of a decision from the Board of Review.

The Board affirmed the administrative law judge's ruling. In the ruling, the Board of Review chastised the city, represented by the Allen Brothers Law Firm, for making careless mistakes in their brief, including several instances of citing wrong pages of transcripts and also mischaracterizing the testimony of the witnesses.

The biggest rebuke the board made was when the city’s attorney attempted to quote Dupuis while citing certain pages, wherein no such quote appeared on those pages or even in the transcript in any place. (Pg. 2: Bd of Review Decision)

The city now has the option to appeal to the Wayne County Circuit Court. It appears the city is spending more tax dollars in legal and filing fees trying to fight the exonerated police officer, than they have paid out in the unemployment compensation claim itself.

Dupuis is still seeking reinstatement through arbitration. His union has been engaged in an arbitration hearing since July. While there have been two days of hearings, the next arbitration date is not scheduled until January 2007.

Dupuis who has maintained his innocence since the incident in question remains optimistic stating, "I'm glad a jury, a judge and now an appeals board was able to see the truth, I hope the arbitrator does too and I can finally get my job back. It's rough going over a year without a steady paycheck."

Dupuis remains appreciative of those who have supported him throughout the ordeal. He is especially appreciative of a fellow police officer, Dennis Whittie, who was fired by the same police chief for writing a "thank you" letter to residents.

Dupuis openly supported Whittie and appeared at a city council meeting to support Whittie in his quest for his job back. Dupuis' appearance at the council meeting took place just three weeks prior to Dupuis' termination.

Dupuis said of Whittie, "He understands the culture of the place and was willing to stick by me from the beginning, even when it seemed that everyone else presumed I was guilty. I just hope we'll both be reinstated soon."

Dupuis was represented by Attorney Paul Wright during the unemployment hearing.

BACKGROUND OF INCIDENT
Ronald Dupuis was accused of tasing his partner, Officer Prema Graham, in November 2005 while the two were riding in a patrol car. Dupuis was quickly fired by Chief James Doyle within days and later charged with assault and battery. The termination and charges came even before all the evidence was collected, including a read out from a taser computer chip that Doyle did not download until 30 days later.

The taser chip showed that the taser was fired one time for a period of one second, consistent with a function test according to Certified Taser Instructor and Hamtramck Police Officer John Aiello during his testimony at the trial.

Graham's version accused Dupuis of firing the taser at least two times and for longer durations into her thigh. She also alleged that Dupuis grabbed the steering wheel and she fought him off, yet the patrol car videotape was not introduced to the jury.

The Detective in charge of the case, Sgt. Vincent Bielecki testified that there was no evidence a crime was committed contained on the videotape in question. A Hamtramck jury took only 20 minutes to acquit Dupuis after the trial was held in March, in the 31st District Court in Hamtramck, MI.

















Dupuis wins Unemployment dispute
Hamtramck Star
by Hillary,
06/16/06 10:13:19 am
http://www.hamtramckstar.com/dupuis_wins_unemployment_dispute/

Last month, an administrative law judge ruled that former Hamtramck Police Officer Ronald Dupuis did not tase his partner, in November 2005.

Administrative Law Judge Douglas G. Wahl specifically ruled as a finding of fact: “The claimant performed a “function test” of his taser while he was in the passenger seat of the patrol car and did not tase his partner.” (Ex. 1)

Dupuis was accused of tasing his partner, Officer Prema Graham, in November 2005 while the two were riding in a patrol car. Dupuis was quickly fired by Chief James Doyle within days and later charged with assault and battery.

The termination and charges came even before all the evidence was collected, including a read out from a taser computer chip that Doyle did not download until 30 days later. The taser chip showed that the taser was fired one time for a period of one second, consistent with a function test according to Certified Taser Instructor and Hamtramck Police Officer John Aiello during his testimony at the trial. (Ex. 2)

Graham’s version accused Dupuis of firing the taser at least two times and for longer durations into her thigh. She also alleged that Dupuis grabbed the steering wheel and she fought him off, yet the patrol car videotape was not introduced to the jury. The Detective in charge of the case, Sgt. Vincent Bielecki testified that there was no evidence a crime was committed contained on the videotape in question. (Ex. 3)

A Hamtramck jury took only 20 minutes to acquit Dupuis after the trial was held in March, in the 31st District Court in Hamtramck, MI.

This latest hearing was conducted pursuant to an Unemployment Claim dispute between Dupuis and the city of Hamtramck. In addition to the finding of fact exonerating Dupuis, again, Dupuis prevailed in that action and received a check for over $5,000 for lost unemployment compensation. The city filed for a re-hearing and was denied a re-hearing by the judge.

Strangely, the city only produced Chief James Doyle and Lt. Craig Serafino to testify. Noticeably absent from the hearing was Officer Graham herself, even though she was readily available and was on patrol on the day of the hearing. Lt. Serafino told the judge that he could not explain why Graham was not there. Chief Doyle told the judge that he did not get enough notice to have Graham present. However, the city received notice two weeks prior to the hearing, which is much more notice than most police officers get when they appear in criminal court.

This Unemployment hearing is now the second victory (after the acquittal) for Dupuis between he and the city of Hamtramck. An arbitration hearing is scheduled for July 2006 in which the Hamtramck Police Union is asking for reinstatement and backpay for Dupuis.Dupuis who has maintained his innocence since the incident stated after receiving the latest award, “I feel great. Not only has a jury found me not guilty of a crime that I did not commit, but now a judge has found specifically as a fact that I did not tase anyone on that day.”

“I hope the arbitrator is able to see what’s really happened as well,” Dupuis stated about the upcoming arbitration, “I really want to get back to work and put this unbelievable nightmare behind me.”

















The Trial
Hamtramck Star
by Hillary
04/02/06 02:12:28 pm
http://hamtramckstar.com/index.php/2006/04/02/the_trial

On Friday, Steve and I attended the "Taser Trial" at City Hall. First, I must say the renovation of the 31st District Court is beautiful; a classic courtroom with wood accents and vintage furniture. The seats for the public were at one time pews in a Catholic church with kneelers and hymnals.

Family and friends of Dupuis packed into the pews on the right with a few college students attending for a class. We sat on the left with Graham's family and friends, and numerous visiting Hamtramck PD officers. A cameraman from FOX2 also sat in the back briefly.

The jury consisted of 4 men and 3 women. Three of the men were non-white, possibly Middle Eastern or Southeast Asian. Mr. Hammoud, the attorney sent by the prosecutor's office, is an ESL speaker, Arabic possibly being his first language. The investigating officer, Sgt. Bielecki, was seated next to the prosecutor. A Mr. Sullivan represented Dupuis.

Graham testified first. She has been employed by the HPD 8 years.

She said that on that day, she was driving, and Dupuis asked her to stop at a gas station for a drink. She drove to a gas station, but past the first entrance "messing with him". He grabbed the wheel for a second, and then stopped. She told him to "calm down", and he pulled out his taser, removed the cartridge, removed the safety, and "cranked it once".

She was intimidated by the crackling and said, "I know you're not going to tase me." Dupuis jabbed towards her twice with the taser off, and then jabbed her thigh and "cranked it again". She went straight to the station, made a report, and offered to show the marks to Lt. Mathias.

She did not seek medical attention.

On cross examination, Graham agreed that she wrote 2 reports about the incident, one immediately after, and another more detailed report later. That day, they stopped at a bank and a jewelry store immediately before. She admitted that Dupuis may have bought her a gift while vacationing in Hawaii, though she didn't remember receiving a call from him after she had been in an auto accident. Graham received training on tasers, but did not accept a shock herself as some officers did. She was positive the trigger was pulled twice, and was told by someone that the firing data matched. She tried to withdraw her complaint a couple hours after filing it, but her request was not honored.

Lt. Mathias, a 40-year veteran of the HPD, testified that Graham came into the station and made an excited utterance that she couldn't work with Dupuis anymore because he "dry stunned her". He said it was improper for Dupuis to pull the taser. He did not confiscate the taser, and had to retrieve it from another officer Dupuis passed it onto in order to preserve it as evidence.

Mathias said he sent Graham and Dupuis home. He did not look at Graham's thigh because he felt it would have been inappropriate.

On cross examination, Mathias was asked about Graham's testimony that she finished her shift, and he conceded that may have been true, and Dupuis also may have worked at a desk the rest of the night.
Dupuis was not arrested, a warrant was not requested, nor was his statement taken that night.

Mathias said he called an off-duty detective in "within the hour", but it was actually over 2 hours. Mathias was asked if police officers have a "different sense of humor", and if he had ever said something to the effect that he could "trump up charges". He agreed he had, but felt the quote was taken out of context.
Detective Crachiola, HPD officer 11 years, testified that she took the photos of Graham's thigh.

She is not trained as an evidence technician and no scale was shown. She described the marks as 2 circles, approximately an inch apart, less then 1/8th inch across. She had never seen a taser injury before, and agreed there were no lines between the marks or swelling.

Lt. Sarafino, HPD officer for 20 years, testified that he downloaded the data from the taser, and printed a report on November 30. The report showed the weapon was fired on November 3, at 15:24 hours, once for 1 second. Sarafino believed the report would show two entries if the weapon were fired twice. The defense attorney asked if information had been downloaded when Officer Nolan was tased, but it was ruled inadmissible.

Officer Aiello, HPD officer the last 11 years, trains Hamtramck officers on taser use and gave a demonstration (later seen on FOX2 news).

The attorney for the prosecution claimed to be afraid of the tasers, and gingerly moved them from his table to the witness stand.

Aiello testified that taking the cartridge out of a taser is like removing the magazine from a gun.

A drive stun only affects the local area. It is protocol to perform a function test at the beginning of each shift. Tasers fire for 5 seconds when the trigger is pulled. Turning the safety on during the 5 second period is the only way to stop it, which is common practice when performing a function test.

Sgt. Bielecki, HPD officer for 24 years, testified that he wrote the warrant request to the prosecutors office, and asked for the video and taser report in the course of his investigation.

When asked why he didn't get the report or video sooner, he said downloading was "not immediately urgent" and the video shows outside of the car and has no sound. He was assigned to this case by Chief Doyle. The investigation was not referred to Michigan State Police, nor were they consulted, which was also Doyle's decision. He was asked if he saw any problem with the discrepancies between his report and the report from the taser, he said he didn't.

The defense attorney said Bielecki led the prosecutor's office to believe the taser was fired twice when he didn't have the report yet, and asked if he felt he had a responsibility to present exculpatory evidence. Bielecki said he had sent a report to the prosecutor's office "by mistake". A warrant was issued on December 2.

The prosecution rested. The defense moved for a mistrial on the grounds that improper statements were made and hearsay introduced. His motion was denied.

The first witness for the defense was the president of Michigan Taser. He explained that a "drive stun" effects the localized area between the probes. If the trigger is pulled twice during the 5-second firing time, only one is recorded. Turning on the safety is the only way to cause a 1-second firing.

While cross examining this witness, the attorney for the prosecution was holding a taser very comfortably; so comfortable that he used his own leg to illustrate his questions. He also referred to the probes as "arrows", and continually talked about the probes until the defense objected on the grounds that they were irrelevant.

The expert said the printed report was correct assuming the software, computer, and taser were working properly, and other than printing a report, there is no way to tell when a taser had been fired. He recommends a function test before every shift. He still instructs courses, though not for Taser International, and was not paid for his appearance in court. He said injuries vary depending on the duration of contact, and can include swelling or blisters.

Ronald Dupuis testified that there are many practical jokers at the police department. That day, Graham was working a double shift. They stopped at a bank, and a jewelry store, and then he asked if she would stop at a gas station so he could buy something to drink. She told him he would have to wait until lunch. Lunch wouldn't be for another 4 hours, so he didn't believe her.

On the way there, she slowed down to tease him more. They were joking back and forth, when he realized his vest had opened his holster, and it reminded him to perform a function test. He tested the taser, and said something like, "I don't want to accidentally tase you when I collapse from dehydration." He pointed it at her a couple times while it was off.

She said, "You can get something to drink after I put some paper on this," and started to return to the station. He thought she was joking. Practical jokes are common at the police department, like hiding equipment in the freezer.

Dupuis said he did not intend to touch Graham with the taser and had no reason to because they were friends. He called to tell her about extra shifts, and bought her a gift while he was on vacation.

The prosecutor asked why Dupuis had said he accidentally tased Graham in a meeting with the prosecutor on November 15. Dupuis said he had started to doubt himself because he didn't think Graham would lie. He denied grabbing the steering wheel.

During closing arguments, the prosecution tried to portray Dupuis as an abuser who was blaming his victim, and claimed the records were faulty.

The defense said that tasers are designed to stop false accusations against police officers, and encouraged the jury to look at the physical evidence. He left them with the thought that if the marks on Graham's leg were from a taser, it was not the taser in evidence.

Within an hour of deliberation, the jury returned a not guilty verdict.

















Taser case wasn't first problem for ex-officer
Checkered past casts doubt on the wisdom of his hiring
Detroit Free Press
January 19, 2006
BEN SCHMITT

Ronald Dupuis' troubled past.
Feb. 17, 1997: Written up for careless driving while working for the Ecorse Police Department.

Nov. 4, 1998: Reprimanded by the Southgate Police Department for a incident Oct. 8, 1998, in which he allegedly beat up a mentally disabled man at a gas station.

Dec. 24, 1998: Accused of falsifying overtime slips while working for Southgate.

March 16, 1999: Accused of stalking a woman and repeatedly pulling her over, also while working for Southgate.

March 30, 1999: Told by the Southgate Police Department that his one-year probationary period would not be honored and that he would be fired. He resigned three days later.

Nov. 7, 2000: Laid off by the Highland Park Public Safety department.

April 21, 2002: While working with the Hamtramck police, he is accused, with another officer, of assaulting a man during a traffic stop, which resulted in a lawsuit.

Nov. 3, 2005: Accused of discharging a Taser stun gun and striking his female partner, Prema Graham, in the leg with the weapon.

Nov. 5, 2005: Lawsuit settled for $20,000 stemming from traffic stop April 2, 2002.
Nov. 10, 2005: Fired from the Hamtramck Police Department.

Dec. 7, 2005: Charged with misdemeanor assault and battery in connection with the Taser incident.

Ronald Dupuis was written up for careless driving in 1997 when he worked for the Ecorse Police Department.

He was reprimanded for allegedly beating up a mentally disabled man at a gas station when he was a Southgate police officer in 1998.

And in 1999, he was accused of stalking a woman while on patrol in Southgate.

Yet the 32-year-old still had a job -- as a Hamtramck police officer -- on Nov. 3 when police say he wounded his partner with a Taser stun gun while on duty.

Dupuis, who is scheduled to appear in Wayne County Circuit Court on Jan. 31 on a misdemeanor assault charge involving the Taser incident, has been fired. But his history as a cop raises questions about why he was hired in Hamtramck in the first place.

Hamtramck police officials concede that their background investigation may not have been thorough enough. When Dupuis was hired in 2001, the state had taken control of the city's finances.

"We didn't have the funding to use detectives for thorough background checks," Hamtramck Police Chief James Doyle said Wednesday. "We did the best we could."

Dupuis has worked as a police officer in Inkster, Ecorse, Hudson, Southgate, Highland Park and Hamtramck. He also worked as a Wayne County sheriff's deputy.

Dupuis declined to comment on his prior troubles and the Taser case through his attorney James Sullivan, who said it's not uncommon for ambitious police officers to change jobs often.

Macomb County Sheriff Mark Hackel says his department doesn't take background checks lightly. Not only are would-be employees subjected to driving record and criminal background checks, but their neighbors and past employers also are interviewed."Everyone, I don't care who it is, goes through this," Hackel said Wednesday.

An examination by the Free Press of Dupuis' employment records with seven different law enforcement agencies in 10 years shows a checkered past.

Eleven months into Dupuis' tenure with the Southgate department, a panel of three officers wrote a report recommending he be terminated after his one-year probation.

The March 1999 note cited five problem areas: attention toward police work, acceptance of feedback, problem solving and decision-making, field performance and relationship with citizens.The panel pointed to a February 1999 incident when Dupuis went to lunch rather than assist other officers in an arrest.

According to the report, when confronted, Dupuis responded: "That's right," with no further explanation.The next night he was sent to a residence on a domestic violence call and never showed, the report said.

Attorney Ben Gonek sued Dupuis, his partner and the City of Hamtramck on behalf of a man who said he was beaten during a traffic stop in 2002, settling for $20,000 last year.Gonek said he checked Dupuis' background and was baffled that Hamtramck hired him."It's clear to me that any department that hired him after some of his previous incidents" was subjecting its taxpayers to liability, Gonek said. "It was clear from his demeanor when I deposed him that he had a real short fuse."

Doyle, who fired Dupuis after the Taser incident, declined to comment on the case because it's still pending.
In that case, Dupuis allegedly demanded that his partner, Prema Graham, who was driving the police car, stop for a soda. When she refused, Dupuis grabbed for the steering wheel before prodding her twice with the Taser as she warded him off with her free hand, police said.

He then recharged the Taser and drove it into her right thigh, police reports said. She was hospitalized with minor injuries and has since returned to work.

Most of his trouble came in Southgate. In 1998, a lieutenant accused him of overtime fraud. In 1999, a 26-year-old woman filed a complaint claiming he had been stalking her."I was afraid he was going to harm her," said the woman's mother, Vicki Bedo.

The Southgate memo written by the three officers mentioned the stalking claim, adding: "it has come to our attention that there are multiple claims of similar actions by Officer Dupuis."

While there are no set standards for background checks, Gonek wondered how Hamtramck Police didn't consider the incidents in Southgate."All they had to do was get his personnel files," he said.

Gonek said that after he checked Dupuis' background for his lawsuit, the Taser incident didn't surprise him at all."The guy just seemed like a walking time bomb to do something really stupid," he said. "Hamtramck had no business hiring him."

















Officer charged with Tasering partner
The News Herald
By Lena Khzouz,
PUBLISHED: December 11, 2005

Former Southgate police Officer Ronald Dupuis, 32, was charged Wednesday with assault and battery for allegedly discharging a Taser at his partner last month in Hamtramck.

Dupuis was working for the Hamtramck Police Department at the time of the incident but has since been fired.

Dupuis allegedly used his Taser on his partner Nov. 3 while they were driving near Conant and Holbrook.

Maria Miller, spokeswoman for the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office, did not confirm that it was the result of an argument, as has been reported in other news stories.

Miller said arrangements were supposed to have been made for his arraignment last week.

According to the 31st District Court in Hamtramck, Dupuis had not been arraigned yet as of Friday morning.

Representatives of the city of Southgate would not release the dates of his employment without a formal Freedom of Information Act request.

Several police departments Downriver use Tasers, which are conductive energy devices utilized as a use-of-force option for law enforcement, private security and the military, according to Taser International.

They are shaped like a gun and can immobilize a subject up to 35 feet away, depending on the skill of the handler, for several minutes.

When the city of Melvindale last week chose to request bids for Tasers for its Police Department, Ron Dehne, a local representative of Taser International, described how being struck with a Taser feels.

"To me, it feels like you hit your funny bone throughout your whole body," he said.

















Michigan Cop Said to Taser Partner Over Soft Drink
Updated: December 8th, 2005 05:06 PM PDT
Detroit Free Press
http://www.officer.com/article/article.jsp?id=27335&siteSection=1

An argument between two police officers over whether they should stop for a soft drink ended with the male officer using a Taser stun gun on his female partner, authorities say.

A Taser delivers an electrical shock to immobilize its target.

Ronald Dupuis, 32, was charged Wednesday with assault, which carries up to 93 days in jail on conviction. His arraignment was not yet scheduled, Hamtramck police Chief James Doyle told the Detroit Free Press.
The chief fired Dupuis, a six-year employee, about a week after the Nov. 3 incident.

According to a police report, Dupuis and partner Prema Graham began arguing after Dupuis demanded she stop their car at a store so he could buy a soft drink. Graham instead drove back toward the police station.
The two then struggled over the steering wheel, and Dupuis used his department-issued Taser to hit Graham in the leg, the report said. She was not seriously hurt.

Hamtramck police union lawyer Eugene Bolanowski said he expected Dupuis to hire a private lawyer.

Bolanowski said he would represent Dupuis should the officer be involved in a grievance.

Dupuis has worked for police departments in Ecorse, Highland Park, Inkster and Southgate and as a Wayne County sheriff's deputy.

















Mich. officer accused of using Taser on partner
Posted 12/8/2005 7:35 AM
USA Today
http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2005-12-08-taser-assault_x.htm

HAMTRAMCK, Mich. (AP) — A police officer has been charged with using a Taser on his partner during an argument over whether they should stop for a soft drink.

Ronald Dupuis, 32, was charged Wednesday with assault and could face up to three months in jail if convicted. The six-year veteran was fired after the Nov. 3 incident.

Dupuis and partner Prema Graham began arguing after Dupuis demanded she stop their car at a store so he could buy a soft drink, according to a police report.

The two then struggled over the steering wheel, and Dupuis hit her leg with his department-issued Taser, the report said. She was not seriously hurt.

Hamtramck police union lawyer Eugene Bolanowski said he expected Dupuis to hire a private lawyer.

Hamtramck is a city of 23,000 surrounded by Detroit.

















Police: Officer used Taser in fight over soda
6-year veteran charged with assaulting his partner in Michigan incident
Updated 6:17 a.m. CT, Thurs., Dec. 8, 2005
MSNBC News
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10378923/

HAMTRAMCK, Mich. - A police officer has been charged with using a Taser on his partner during an argument over whether they should stop for a soft drink.

Ronald Dupuis, 32, was charged Wednesday with assault and could face up to three months in jail if convicted. The six-year veteran was fired after the Nov. 3 incident.

Dupuis and partner Prema Graham began arguing after Dupuis demanded she stop their car at a store so he could buy a soft drink, according to a police report.

The two then struggled over the steering wheel, and Dupuis hit her leg with his department-issued Taser, the report said. She was not seriously hurt.

Hamtramck police union lawyer Eugene Bolanowski said he expected Dupuis to hire a private lawyer.
Hamtramck is a city of 23,000 surrounded by Detroit.

















Officer Ronald Dupuis' past law enforcement history:





Feb. 17, 1997: Officer Ronald Dupuis written up for careless driving while on duty. Ecorse Police Department.



Between 1997 and 1998: Officer Ronald Dupuis leaves the Ecorse PD and becomes an officer with the Southgate PD.



October 08, 1998: Officer Ronald Dupuis allegedly beat up a mentally disabled man. Southgate PD.



November 04, 1998: Officer Ronald Dupuis reprimanded by the Southgate Police Department for the October 8th beating incident.



Dec. 24, 1998: Officer Ronald Dupuis accused of falsifying overtime slips. Southgate PD.



March 16, 1999: Officer Ronald Dupuis accused of stalking a woman and repeatedly pulling her over while he was on duty. Southgate PD.



March 30, 1999: Officer Ronald Dupuis was informed that he would be fired from the Southgate PD [Stalking incident].



April 02, 1999: Officer Ronald Dupuis resigned from the Southgate PD, to avoid being fired for stalking incident.



Sometime after April 02, 1999: Officer Ronald Dupuis was hired by the Highland Police Department [after resigning from the Southgate PD, to avoid being fired for stalking incident].



Nov. 7, 2000: Officer Ronald Dupuis was laid off by the Highland Park Public Safety department.



Sometime after November 07, 2000: Officer Ronald Dupuis was hired by the Hamtramck PD, after being laid off by the Highland PD.



April 21, 2002: Officer Ronald Dupuis was accused of assaulting a man during a traffic stop. Hamtramck PD. Resulted in a lawsuit, which was settled for $20,000 on November 05, 2005. Dupuis was not fired from the Hamtramack PD. for this incident.



2004: Hamtramck police officer Dupuis was sued by a man who alleged Dupuis wrongfully arrested him and had him jailed for no reason. The man was released without being charged. His lawsuit was settled for an undisclosed amount.



Nov. 3, 2005: Officer Ronald Dupuis was accused of discharging a Taser stun gun and striking his female partner, Officer Prema Graham, in the leg with the weapon. [Hamtramack PD]



Nov. 10, 2005: Officer Ronald Dupuis was fired from the Hamtramck Police Department for tasering Officer Prema Graham.



Sometime after November 10, 2005: Officer Ronald Dupuis won legal challenges related to the tasering incident Officer Prema Graham, and the Hamtramck PD's firing of him.



Sometime after November 10, 2005: Officer Ronald Dupuis returned to duty at the Highland Police Department [previously laid off from department in November 2000].



Dec. 7, 2005: Officer Ronald Dupuis charged with misdemeanor assault and battery in connection with the Taser incident.



April 01, 2006: Officer Ronald Dupuis found not guilty at trial of November 2005 taser incident against Officer Prema Graham



June 16, 2006: Officer Ronald Dupuis won an unemployment claim dispute against the City of Hamtramck for their firing of him after the November 2005 taser incident Officer Prema Graham. Chief of Police also refused to reinstate Dupuis.



2006: Officer Ronald Dupuis filed a lawsuit against the City of Hamtramck and Officer Prema Graham [November 2005 taser incident]



August 2006: City of Hamtramck lost appeal on Officer Ronald Dupuis' unemployment.



November 01, 2006: Officer Ronald Dupuis filed a lawsuit against the City of Hamtramck: Civil Rights / Employment. Police Chief refused to reinstate him. [November 2005 taser incident of Officer Graham].



January 2007: Officer Ronald Dupuis filed suit to be reinstated to Hamtramck PD, following his being terminated after November 2005 taser incident against Officer Prema Graham.



October 31, 2008: Officer Ronald Dupuis filed suit against City of Hamtramck.



2012: Officer Ronald Dupuis was accused of choking a woman who was in custody.



February 28, 2012: Officer Ronald Dupuis filed a suit against Highland Park: Civil Rights / Employment.



May 22, 2012: Officer Ronald Dupuis' gun "accidently" went off outside the department's cell block. Dupuis was shot in the leg. Sources at the Highland PD said there would be no disciplinary action taken against Dupuis.



September 19, 2013: Highland Park Officer Ronald Dupuis arrested uniformed / on duty Detroit Parking Enforcement Officer Rhianna Turner and her girlfriend Kera Hill, in front of Detroit PD. Dupuis transported them back to Highland PD and had the women jailed for four days - without charges. Turner lost her job due to the unlawful arrest and imprisonment.



January 12, 2015: An online video from Emma Craig surfaced, showing Officer Dupuis beating a handcuffed Andrew Jackson during an arrest. "Highland Park city attorney Todd Perkins said he's aware of Dupuis' checkered past, although he said he will "draw no conclusions" from it." In April 2015, Highland Park Police Chief Kevin Coney stated that Officer Dupuis was not facing discipline for the beating of Andrew Jackson.



January 14, 2015: Michigan State Police investigation of Officer Ronald Dupuis and other officers for the January beating of Andrew Jackson. Officer Dupuis was not suspended from duty during this criminal investigation.



February 09, 2015: Officer Ronald Dupuis was shot in the leg during a raid. Officer Dupuis was still on active duty despite an MSP investigation of the beating of Andrew Jackson during a January 2015 arrest.



February 13, 2015: Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy began criminal investigation of Officer Ronald Dupuis and other officers for the January 2015 beating of Andrew Jackson. Officer Dupuis was not suspended from duty during this criminal investigation.
"According to the office, it received a warrant request from the Michigan State Police, which investigated the arrest of Andrew Jackson Jr. on Jan. 12 by officers...One of the officers shown in the video making the arrest is Highland Park Sgt. Ron Dupuis..."



February 25, 2015: Lawsuit filed by Andrew Jackson against Officer Ronald Dupuis for January 2015 beating.



April 15, 2015: Lawsuit filed by Rhianna Turner and Kera Hill against Officer Ronald Dupuis for unlawful arrest and false imprisonment [September 2013]



April 20, 2015: Officer Dupuis cleared by Prosecutor Kym Worthy of criminal charges in the January 2015 beating of Andrew Jackson.
"Worthy did not defend some of the officers’ conduct.  She said some of Sgt. Dupuis’s behavior was improper and warrants possible punishment from his superiors. Still, Worthy said, charges aren’t warranted."



April 20, 2015: Highland Park Police Chief Kevin Coney announced that Officer Ronald Dupuis was not facing disciplinary action for the January beating of Andrew Jackson.