Dan Lovelace Investigation: Pinal County Sheriff's Office Responds -- Plus Some Video of an ICE Detainee Taking a Dump on the Floor

Categories: News
lovelace.jpg
Trouble-prone cop Dan Lovelace
Since our story yesterday about an investigation into whether trouble-prone former Chandler cop Dan Lovelace abused an ICE inmate being housed in a Pinal County jail, the Pinal County Sheriff's Office has been inundated with calls from media outlets looking for details about the incident.

This afternoon, the PCSO released the details -- they're shitty, literally. But based on the video we received from the PCSO, Lovelace doesn't appear to have done much wrong.

According to the PCSO, the inmate -- an ICE detainee -- was booked into the Pinal County Adult Detention Center on July 23, as a level-3 inmate,the highest custody classification an inmate can have while locked up as a guest of the Department of Homeland Security.

The classification, the Sheriff's Office says, was based on the inmate's history as a troublemaker -- a side that came out shortly after he was booked and the inmate returned a razor to jail staff with paper in place of the blade (in other words, he got caught trying to steal a razor blade).

As for the incident for which Lovelace is under investigation, on December 11, the inmate, who speaks English (it was unclear until now whether the inmate was able to understand the officers commands), asked officers if he could use the bathroom -- despite having used it 12 minutes prior.

The officers told him he would have to wait until they got done checking on the welfare of another inmate.

That's when it happened. The inmate dropped trou and took a dump right on the floor.

He then used his hand and a piece of paper given to him by another inmate to (ahem) clean up.

At that point, Lovelace and three other officers went into the room to remove the inmate, whose hands, Gaffney says, were now covered in feces.

They instructed him to lie on the floor, but the inmate refused. The inmate's refusal, combined with the feces all over his hands (which Gaffney says created a bio-hazard), prompted Lovelace to hit him with "a short burst" of pepper spray. The inmate went to the ground but still refused to put his hands behind his back.

Lovelace hit him with another burst and the inmate changed his tune -- he complied with officers and was taken out of the recreation room and placed in a decontamination shower.

Like all use-of-force incidents, Gaffney says, the incident will be reviewed by the sheriff's Professional Standards Unit, which will determine whether he used appropriate means to subdue the inmate.

Lovelace appears to be in the right in this situation, but, as Gaffney admits, whenever an officer with a history like his is involved in any sort of potential misconduct, it's going to get some attention.

We concluded our story yesterday by saying the video will either vindicate Lovelace or cook his goose.

You be the judge -- check out the video below.




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17 comments
guest
guest

yup and this guys is not going to be part of the community resource department for PCSO. so what this means to all the citizens...when you want a block watch meeting, this criminal is going to come into your home to teach you how to be a better community. When elderly would like a home alone box installed..this gentleman will be doing that as well. And all the fundraising this department does for the sheriffs office, he will be the one going out in the public asking from donations to support the sherriffs office. I gotta tell you this is the best choice! sarcasm shouldnt have to be explained. The point is he was tired of being in the jail and the sheriff decided to put him in the public eye to give another one of his "buddys" a job, and since we all know he no longer is legally able to be a cop, this was the alternative. This was at the cost of someone elses job. so no other reason for this person to lose his position, other than lovelace is the sheriffs buddy. So much for the sheriff stepping away from the good ole boy system that he repeatedly stated he was going avoid since the previous sheriff was too corrupt for this exact reason. 

Robert Hernandez McDonald Jr.
Robert Hernandez McDonald Jr.

No I was not.You try working in that environment. I no longer work in that profession because it is extremely dangerous and I was assaulted by a USMS inmate because he wanted to make a phone call while in admin segregation. Why was this person in ad seg because he assaulted another staff member and flooded his cell. That id why I have no issue with what Lovelace did

G Martin
G Martin

This incident is news worthy? must be a slow news day!

carol powell
carol powell

does not show anything that i could see,however he got by with murder in chandler & he will get by with inmate abuse.so what is the purpose of having video evidence? cops always get by with murder

Tommy Collins
Tommy Collins

PCSO set itself up for unusual criticism by hiring Lovelace. Lovelace will be watched carefully in everything he does as part of his job, and I'm sure he is very much aware of it.

Hock said, "Any use of force will be a loser in court. Right or wrong, he has been directly responsible for two large civil lawsuits".

I don't agree. I would think that any civil action would exclude the two previous actions unless he was found liable for a third, at which time the previous findings may be allowed to help determine an award for damages, etc.

Use of force is always considered as being the force necessary to control a situation. Only when officers go beyond that necessary force is it considered excessive, and may be grounds for a civil action. Juries are very hesitant to award damages unless the force is obvious, such as the recent video showing the detention officer from MCSO hopping onto a table and stepping on the guy's neck to hold him down, with much of the weight from his 250 lbs of lard ass directly applied on the guy.

When someone like Lovelace is hired it simply puts the employer (PCSO) into a position of constantly having to supervise the employee and constantly having to defend any actions on his part. There are probably better candidates without such a history, who can do the job as well as Lovelace. I see this as yet another example of bad judgment by Babeu, who is proving to be a real horses ass as sheriff.

Passionbella
Passionbella

DAn acted and did the right thing... by means i wouldve done the same thing!... the video speaks for it self... i hope he keeps his job... his a great worker and i have much respect!... by the way i totally think thats dumbbb wer it says i quote "As for the incident for which Lovelace is under investigation, on December 11, the inmate, who speaks English (it was unclear until now whether the inmate was able to understand the officers commands), asked officers if he could use the bathroom -- despite having used it 12 minutes prior." nah first of all... you can tell this was plan the other guy was already jokin around what to do... its soo obviousss that this was set... and 2nd... they have can use thier restroom in thier cells!!!! whenever they want unless thier in Suicide watch!... ughhh this whole thing is just a hugeee joke.. and not worth to even make a big deal... watch the video and be a judge to it!... and with his pastt... know the real story!...

Gonehuntingelk
Gonehuntingelk

First of all inmates at pcso cant use the bathroom if they are locked in the rec yard ...thats why they were trying to get the officers attention....this will be another try and cover up by sheriff cone head and the rest of his saturday night live gang...but I think it may be too late.....can you say see ya ICE

Bughowzer
Bughowzer

is english your second language or are you just dumb.

Arizona Prison Watch
Arizona Prison Watch

Glad to see some coverage of prisoner abuse, but unless the guy was seriously mentally ill, this is small stuff - only "news" b/c of Lovelace's past. I'd like to know if the Pinal County Sheriff's Office, County Attorney's Office, and/or the PHX New Times are investigating the abuse of the 18 Hawaiian prisoners in CCA's Saguaro Correctional Center in Eloy as a criminal matter. There have been some serious civil rights violations there. From the Dec 15 Courthouse News article on it (http://www.courthousenews.com/...

The inmates say CCA guards beat them to retaliate for a July 26 fight or "disturbance" in which "a lieutenant or other employee of CCA was injured."

The guards beat the plaintiffs to coerce "statements" from them, and "when plaintiffs wrote brief statements, defendants demanded that plaintiffs disclose more, and then engaged in the acts alleged herein [in] an effort to coerce further statements," the complaint states.

"Plaintiffs were beaten and assaulted, including by having their heads banged on tables while they were stripped to their underwear and while their hands were handcuffed behind their backs.

"Plaintiffs were stripped of nearly all of their clothing while being beaten, questioned, and humiliated.

"Plaintiffs were threatened with harm to themselves and their families, including through such statements as:

"a. 'We have your emergency contact information;' "b. 'We know who your family is and where they live and we are going to harm them;' "c. 'We are going to kill you;' "d. 'We will continue to beat you and the only way to stop that is to commit suicide;' "e. 'We will send you to hell;' "f. 'We will stick something up your ass.'

"Inmates were required to get on their knees with their hands handcuffed behind their back, whereupon they were beaten by multiple officers employed by defendants.

"Inmates were kicked while on the ground. ...

"Inmates were denied prompt medical treatment for their injuries in an effort to conceal what had happened.

"Inmates were told that if they did not provide written statements, their beatings would continue.

"Beatings in fact continued for those who refused to provide statements..."

Gonehuntingelk
Gonehuntingelk

I dont know what kind of corectional professional you all come from but maybe you should all go back to work for these morons. first of all the inmate as well as other inmates continiously try to get the attention of the officers even activate an intercom button. There was no immediate threat there just gas happy cop want to be. And nice escort technique...ICE should be proud t house their inmate in Pinal County...what a joke

Gerry_C
Gerry_C

I am certainly not a Dan Lovelace fan. But I don't see anything here that is obviously wrong from the point of a lay person when it comes to jail operations. Until the video was out, it was easy for me to think "There he goes again." as a result of Lovelace's history. Shame on me.

Coz
Coz

yea, me too.

Coz
Coz

As much as I think Lovelace is nothing more than a trigger happy cop, I don't see that he did anything wrong in this incident.

Now the inmate in this situation is a looney toon...

Hock
Hock

First: Why would any department hire Lovelace? Any use of force will be a loser in court. Right or wrong, he has been directly responsible for two large civil lawsuits. That is poor risk management.

Second: If Babeu is going to try to spin things...he needs a better spinner then Gaffney...he's horrible at his job. EVERYTHING has a justification...and that's just not the way it is...when he tries to justify things...he must makes it look like they're covering something up.

Deniseaz
Deniseaz

i think that Dan acted as he should have , i seen nothing of the likes from many other videos . seems to have taken approperate action and the jailee seems to have been out of line ,and not responding as was ordered ,, so , i say that Dan was in the right , and handled the situation rightly .

Robert Hernandez McDonald Jr.
Robert Hernandez McDonald Jr.

As a former Corrections Professional and former Detention Officer for the Pinal County Sherriff's Department (1997-98) I would have done and have done the exact same thing that Dan Lovelace had done. I have had shit and piss thrown at me and have been assaulted by inmates and I have no issue with what he did. That idiot who did that was an animal and should have been treated as such.

Bughowzer
Bughowzer

glad you are not in law enforcement any longer.were you fired for inmate abuse or some other henious crime?

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