Police said Martinez, who was arrested Wednesday, at first denied trying to stop the officer’s vehicle. But Officer Jim Beere, an undercover officer assigned to the vice/child exploitation unit whose vehicle Martinez was trying to stop, said Martinez later claimed he thought Beere was a member of a street gang he was having problems with and wanted to see who he was.
“He was in a black Ford Crown Victoria similar to our unmarked cars,” Beere said. “He accelerated and turned on some flashing lights on his dash board. In the grill it looked like he had red and blue lights that seemed to be on, but they turned out to be painted speakers he had for a microphone he had in his hand and appeared to be talking into.”
Things Not To Do: Police Edition July 27, 2009
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Curled on the edge of the San Francisco Bay in Marin County, Tiburon is not a high-crime spot. In 2008, police report there were 99 thefts, 20 burglaries and two auto thefts.
That was not a significant change from the year before. But police say with most of the crimes taking place at night, and suspects identified so far as out-of-towners with criminal records, they believe having the license plate information would be helpful in solving crimes.
The way the system would work is still cameras set up at town entry points will take a photograph of license plates — but not drivers. License plate numbers collected would be erased within 30 to 60 days and would not be viewed unless there is a crime to solve.
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Gates’s home is owned by Harvard so he picked up the phone to call the university’s real estate maintenance office. Before he could finish the conversation, a police officer was standing on his porch and asking him to come out of the house. “Instinctively, I knew I was not to step outside,” Gates said, describing the officer’s tone as threatening. Gates said the policeman, who was in his 30s and several inches taller than him, followed him into his kitchen where Gates retrieved his identification.
“I was thinking, this is ridiculous, but I’m going to show him my ID, and this guy is going to get out of my house,” Gates said. “This guy had this whole narrative in his head. Black guy breaking and entering.”
After handing the officer both his Harvard and Massachusetts state identification, which included his address, Gates said he began to ask the officer this question, repeatedly. “I said ‘Who are you? I want your name and badge number.’ I got angry.”
According to Gates’s account, the officer refused to give it. The police report says, however, that the officer identified himself.