Articles from January 2009



School Pride, part 2: VCU Police Chief had a degree from a diploma mill.

Jesus Christ, can I apply for this guy’s job? At least all my education is from accredited organizations. Although if VCU keeps this up it won’t be:

Willie B. Fuller became Virginia Commonwealth University’s police chief with a bachelor’s degree of questionable quality.

For VCU, which has endured nearly a year of negative publicity for improperly awarding a degree to Richmond’s former police chief, Fuller’s arrest Wednesday on charges of using a computer to solicit sex from an underage girl is a setback in efforts to repair its reputation.

[…]

Fuller holds a bachelor’s degree in police science from St. John’s University in Springfield, La., according to St. John’s director of permanent records. St. John’s in Louisiana is not affiliated with the prestigious Catholic university with the same name in New York, or with St. John’s College, which has campuses in Annapolis, Md., and Santa Fe, N.M.

Robert D. Holsworth, former dean of the College of Humanities and Sciences at VCU, said yesterday that he discovered St. John’s University was not an officially accredited institution while researching the case of a VCU employee who did not have a legitimate undergraduate degree.

[…]

“In this instance, I personally made the unhappy discovery that the degree not only came from an unaccredited institution, but that the Web site of the institution was now a conduit to pornographic sites,” he wrote June 26 to Richard O. Bunce, VCU’s director of assurance services.

Holsworth made the discovery around 2006, the year VCU awarded an undergraduate degree to Fuller, who had attended VCU in the 1970s. When Holsworth discovered it, “I brought that to the attention of the appropriate individuals at VCU,” he said.

Fuller was awarded a VCU bachelor of interdisciplinary studies degree [the same degree that Rodney Moore was awarded], university spokeswoman Pam Lepley said. He also has a post-graduate certificate in public management from VCU, Lepley said. VCU officials did not say who approved Fuller’s undergraduate degree.

The St. John’s degree apparently raised no red flags until Fuller began work on a master’s degree at VCU.

[…]

However, the university is not accredited in Louisiana, said Cheryl Michelet, director of communications for the state Board of Regents.

Nor is it accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, which covers Virginia and Louisiana. Tom E. Benberg, the commission’s chief of staff, said the university is “totally unfamiliar to me.”

School Pride: VCU Police Chief arrested for electronic solicitation of a minor.

And the best comment award at the Richmond Times-Dispatch‘s site goes to this guy:

Maybe they can ask Rodney Monroe to comeback and serve as Chief. That way he could finish his degree requirements and actually earn his degree from VCU.

Un-freakin’-believable: Caroline County requests $694,701,315 in funds from the federal stimulus.

That works out to almost $25,000 per citizen.

Do they not realize that they just requested $694,701,315 in funding? Not $6,947,013.15 in funding, not $69,470,131.50 in funding, but $694,701,315. Do those idiots realize how much freakin’ money that is? It’s almost 10 times the amount of their yearly operating budget!

And the sheer volume of these requests reduces the likelihood of actually getting a dime from the government. They’re just going to laugh in the county’s face when they get this list.

$120,000,000 for a fraking train station?!

This crap just reinforces the perception that Caroline County is populated with — and ran by — a bunch of hicks and idiots.

Everyone on that Board needs to be voted out of office, and whoever on the county staff decided that the $694,701,315 figure was a good idea needs to be fired.

FFS, I give up.

Stimulus package – 2009.pdf

Stimulas Package Projects spreadsheet.pdf

Bobby Orrock wants to suppress voter registration!

At least that’s what can be determined by his sponsorship of HB2642:

Elections; voter registration procedures and revisions; duties of the State Board of Elections with respect to registration procedures; payments for petition signatures or registrations; penalties. Provides various revisions in voter registration procedures: (i) requires proof of citizenship with registration applications effective January 1, 2010; (ii) provides that third-party voter registration organizations must register with the State Board, which shall maintain a list of all registered voter registration drives and post this list on its website, that such organizations must provide quarterly reports to the State Board of all voter registration drives they conducted during that quarter

Let’s break this down, first:

Provides various revisions in voter registration procedures: (i) requires proof of citizenship with registration applications effective January 1, 2010;

Applicants are already required to show that they’re citizens as noted on the voter registration application form [emphasis in original]:

For Registration

If you are registering for the first time by mail, federal law (the Help America Vote Act) requires you to provide identification. To avoid delays, please enclose a copy of one of the following documents that shows your name and address with your application: (1) current and valid photo ID, (2) current utility bill, (3) bank statement, (4) government check, (5) paycheck, or (6) other government document. You can also present this required identification at the polls but may experience delays.

For Voting

Virginia law requires every voter voting in person to show identification or sign a statement, subject to felony penalties for false statements pursuant to §24.2-1016, that the person is the named registered voter.

But now Orrock wants you to provide of a copy of your birth certificate (or naturalization papers) before you can register to vote! I would say that about 10% (or more) don’t have a copy of their birth certificate with them due to whatever causes. Apparently, Delegate Orrock doesn’t think that those people should be allowed to register to vote in this state.

Then you have this part from Orrock’s bill:

(ii) provides that third-party voter registration organizations must register with the State Board, which shall maintain a list of all registered voter registration drives and post this list on its website, that such organizations must provide quarterly reports to the State Board of all voter registration drives they conducted during that quarter

Care to guess how broadly defined a “third-party voter registration organization” is?: “‘Third-party voter registration organization’ means any person, entity, or organization soliciting or collecting voter registration applications, except it does not include a person who solicits or collects voter registration applications (i) from any family or household member, as that term is defined in § 16.1-228, or (ii) pursuant to the provisions of Article 3 (§ 24.2-411 et seq.) of Chapter 4 of this title [relating to general registrars].”

Well, hot damn, that pretty much includes anyone that dares to hand out a voter registration form to anyone (excluding family or household members). Hell, it even includes candidates that happens to have voter registration forms with them while campaigning.

Imagine this scenario: Candidate John Doe is going door-to-door in a community during his campaign for whatever office. He comes across someone who wants to vote for him but isn’t currently registered to vote.

If John Doe happens to say something like, “Well, sir, I happen to have a voter registration form right here!” and gives the citizen a voter registration form, then John Doe would have to go to the State Board of Elections (SBE) and provide them with “the the name of the registered agent and the names of the individuals responsible for the day-to-day operations of the organization, including, if applicable, the names of the organization’s board of directors, officers, or other individuals engaged in similar duties or functions” to register as a “third-party voter registration organization”.

John Doe would then have to provide quarterly reports to the SBE “providing the date and location of any organized voter registration drives conducted by the organization in the prior calendar quarter.”

This bill would essentially criminalize the distribution of voter registration forms unless you want to register with the SBE and provide quarterly reports to them.

Hopefully the voters will show Orrock the door this year…

Heartache at The WaPo: Murderers and rapists stay in prison!

Seriously, why is this paper considered a serious news source anymore?:

Lawmakers and prison advocates say the Virginia Parole Board has virtually stopped granting parole to thousands of inmates convicted of crimes before the state halted the practice more than a decade ago.

Of the 4,500 Virginia prisoners eligible for parole in 2008, about 95 percent were denied early release, which is among the highest rejection rates in the country, according to experts. Many were convicted before 1995, when Virginia adopted a “truth in sentencing” policy that required felons to serve at least 85 percent of their sentences.

State officials say the reason for the small percentage is that most nonviolent criminals have been released in the past 14 years, leaving mainly rapists and murderers who might still pose a threat. In many cases, applications are rejected because of the “serious nature and circumstances of the crime.”

[…]

The issue was brought to the attention of [Senator Chap] Petersen and other state officials by the Virginia chapter of Citizens United for Rehabilitation of Errants, which advocates for the rights of inmates and their families.

Jae George is a member of the group. Her son, Gary A. Kammeter, was sentenced in 1995 to life in prison in the planned killing of a sheriff’s deputy in Mathews County and the death of a teenage girl in Middlesex County. The girl was shot as Kammeter and a companion were looking for another teenager who had reneged on a marijuana deal, according to media reports.

Wow, commit capital murder and be involved in killing a teenager girl and The Washington Post will treat you as a cause célèbre.

The piece of crap should be lucky he didn’t get the liquid styrofoam treatment [lethal injection]. It sure sucks that a guy that is responsible for two peoples’ death is actually getting the life in prison he was sentenced to. I’m so upset.

If you bother to read the whole story (don’t, it’s a waste of time) you will see that the paper didn’t bother interviewing or seeking comment from any of the murdered deputy’s or murdered girl’s family. But of course not, the real victim here is the murderer!

Gag a freakin’ maggot…

Real efficient and effective use of state resources, guys…

From The Free Lance–Star:

Culpeper town police thought they knew who was responsible for an outbreak of automobile vandalism last summer, but they just didn’t have quite enough evidence to take the case to court.

Now, thanks to DNA evidence, they have charged a 17-year-old boy with destruction of property in the incidents.

Now, the last I checked, it cost quite a bit to do a DNA test.

Not only that, but how many cases of a more serious nature (e.g., murder, rape) had to wait in line while the forensic lab was doing DNA testing for a vandalism case? In 2004, for example, the Commonwealth had a six-month backlog for DNA testing. In 2007, it was estimated by the Director of the state crime lab that “the state has a backlog of 1,100 to 1,200 DNA cases.”

Despite what you see on those stupid television shows such as CSI: [Whatever] or Law & Order: [Whatever] it can take weeks for a DNA test to be completed.

And given the fact that it appears that at least three tests had to be done (the story notes “blood and other DNA evidence [was] found at the scenes” and you also have the reference sample from the suspect), how many hours were consumed for this case and what was the total cost?

Well, actually, someone did speak up…

You just chose to ignore them.

Right now, VCU is facing the embarrassment of awarding the former city of Richmond Police Chief, Rodney Moore, a degree when he failed to meet certain requirements (specifically, the requirement that the student complete his final 30 credit hours at VCU and that the student take at least six credits of “writing intensive” classes).

The university has since decided to set up an anonymous tipline for people to notify the college of “ethics violations” (Richmond Times-Dispatch):

Virginia Commonwealth University will set up a confidential help line to make it easier for a whistle-blower to stop an ethics violation such as the one that led to the improper awarding of a bachelor’s degree to a former Richmond police chief.

[…]

VCU President Eugene P. Trani said the controversy over the degree awarded to Rodney Monroe, now police chief in Charlotte/Mecklenburg County, N.C., should never have happened.

“It has done a significant amount of damage to the university’s reputation” and could have been avoided had a single person spoken up, Trani said.

Well, folks, someone did speak up. From another Richmond Times-Dispatch story from back in October:

The coordinator of the program through which former Richmond Police Chief Rodney Monroe received his bachelor’s degree says she argued from the start that he should have received his degree from the University of Phoenix, not Virginia Commonwealth University.

Linda L. Spinelli, who retired in May as the degree investigation began, said yesterday that she objected from the moment she received Monroe’s transcripts from her supervisor, Jon Steingass, who was then dean of University College. That’s because Monroe didn’t have enough credits from VCU to receive his degree.

“Immediately I recognized that although Mr. Monroe had plenty of acceptable transfer credits, he would need to earn 30 from VCU,” said Spinelli, who was coordinator of the bachelor of interdisciplinary studies program, which is part of University College.

She said she informed Steingass of the problem that same day.

The administration at VCU ignored her…

Sheriff Tony Lippa endorses John Brownlee for Attorney General.

I’m still leaning towards Cuccinelli right now, but hey:

Greetings:

A short e-mail to let you all know: I have met two of the three candidates for Attorney General and I am supporting John Brownlee. Mr. John Brownlee will be coming to Bowling Green , Saturday, January 17th, 10:30-11:30 AM at the Main Street Cafe ( 117 Main Street ). Although I will not be in town that day, if you are available and want to meet him, I am sure that John will be able to answer your questions, address your concerns, or discuss his views and his plans for the Office of Attorney General.

Furthermore; John is an Army veteran and that he is the only prosecutor and the only veteran seeking the Republican nomination for Attorney General. Presently over 75 Sheriffs and Commonwealth’s Attorneys around the state have already endorsed him.

You all know that I am an independent, with that being said, and if you have the time to meet him, you will see why I have endorsed him.

You may learn more about John by visiting his website www.johnbrownlee2009.com


Warning: Unknown: open(/home/content/36/5675336/tmp/sess_mq17e7qeoqtkmj4rodusa5s0a1, O_RDWR) failed: No such file or directory (2) in Unknown on line 0

Warning: Unknown: Failed to write session data (files). Please verify that the current setting of session.save_path is correct () in Unknown on line 0