Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Why hasn't the Southside Sentinel demanded an investigation into Middlesex & statewide Social Services? An editorial by Wes Fager

On Feb. 11, 2008 Betty Wade Coyle of the Virginian-Pilot, the daily in Norfolk, Va., wrote an editorial declaring that Virginia needs a children's ombudsman because "even though concerns are expressed to authorities, very little is done." She cited the Art Bracke case as the catalyst that brought on her editorial. Now Norfolk is a good 80 miles from Middlesex, besides, on Feb. 11 when she wrote her article Bracke had only been accused of arson, attempted murder and molestation, not convicted. Furthermore, the molestation charge had occurred shortly after Bracke had left Middlesex Social Services, that is, he was not even a CPS officer when he was accused of these bad acts. So why was Ms. Coyle so concerned about what happens 80 miles from her and her city, by a man who was no longer with social services, by a man who had only been accused of crimes--not yet convicted? She was concerned because child abuse is everybody's business. She wants to know whether Bracke had ever molested a child(ren) when he was a CPS worker, and if so how many? She views this as a state issue, as well as a local issue. continued

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Art Bracke's trial for attempted murder of his yougest adopted son continued to Aug. 5

Last August Arthur Bracke was convicted of child molestation of a boy under the age of 13. On September 3, 2008 he plead guilty to arson for torching his former home. Mr. Bracke claims he did not know that his adopted son Josh was sleeping inside the burning house. The Commonwealth doesn't believe him and will try him for the attempted murder of Josh Bracke in Circuit Court in Saluda, Va. on Aug. 5, 2009.

Middlesex High School principal resigns

Chris Valdrighi, hired in 2004 to be principal of Middlesex High School, has resigned. See the Southside Sentinel. cache version

Monday, January 26, 2009

Michael Carona, former Sheriff of Orange County, Ca., once known as "America's Sheriff", convicted of witness tampering.

Orange County, California Sheriff Michael S. Carona, once called "America's Sheriff" has been convicted of witness tampering. story cache version

Assistant Sheriff and Newport Beach millionaire Don Haidl testified that Carona gave out badges that looked just like real department badges to friends who contributed to his campaign. story

Two jurors complainted to judge that they felt intimidated. story

Related Links:
The Dark Side Of Dreamland by Karl Vick, Washington Post.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Former Gloucester Sheriff Robin P. Stanaway dies from an apparent suicide

He was Sheriff in Gloucester County for 20 years until losing the 2007 election to Steve Gentry. Daily Press cache version

Thursday, January 15, 2009


He was Virginia's longest serving CPS worker who molested a little boy just months after leaving his job. Now he's going up the river for 34 years.

For over 20 years Arthur Rudolf Bracke (pronounced brock) was the sole CPS (child protective service) officer for Middlesex County, Virginia making him the most tenured CPS worker in the entire state. Bracke's supervisor retired in 2005 and was replaced by E. William Geneisse in Jan. 2006. Strangely, with all the years experience Bracke had had in dealing with children, one of the first things Geneisse did was to move Bracke to adult protective services. The papers say that Bracke retired at the end of July 2007. Three months later he molested a boy under 13 in his care at his (Bracke's) home. Bracke met the child through his mother who has had professional dealings with Bracke through his work prior to his retirement. continued

Art Bracke's legacy continues to haunt Middlesex County

At the Middlesex County board of supervisors meeting held on Dec. 2, 2008 it was pointed out that Middlesex County, with a population of only 10,000, has more children in foster care than nearby York County with a population of 35,000. Middlesex Social Services is responsible for foster care, but it cost the county money for each child in that service. It was further noted that the county actually pays for foster care of children that are not even in the county! "We have tried to deal with this over the years but it is a social services department function," said [Middlesex County Administrator Charles] Culley. "We have a [former] child protection service person (Art Bracke) who has been convicted and is now sitting in jail. You can draw some direct correlation from some of these things that took place in social services with him being there."

The question is - "what percentage of these fostered children are little white boys?".

Source: Cost of foster children concerns supervisors by Larry S. Chowning, Southside Sentinel

Middlesex supervisors yank Sheriff Guy Abbott's credit card

There's been a lot of discussion on Topix on whether Middlesex Sheriff Guy Abbott should "face charges of misuse of funds" because of allegations that the board of supervisors yanked his credit card for questionable charges. See Topix (cache version). Many posters have doubted the existence of the alleged improper credit card charges.

Here is verification from the minutes of the Dec. 7, 2007 board of supervisors meeting where the supervisors voted indeed to close Sheriff Abbott's credit card account and withdraw his card.

If you have a story about the Midlesex Sheriff Department, good or bad, we'd love to hear from you. Contact us confidentially at CONTACT.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Newport News police lieutenant given a $50,000 bond --

from from Daily Press by JON CAWLEY 247-4635 January 7, 2009

YORK - A Newport News police supervisor . . . Lt. Ronald M. Hendrickson, 47, of Yorktown . . . is facing three felonies: abduction, abduction with intent to defile and animate object penetration, along with misdemeanor sexual battery."

Full story at NN police lieutenant given a $50,000 bond --

Botched Drug Raid of the Day--Middlesex Sheriff Guy Abbott's helicopter drops in on a tomato patch

Botched Drug Raid of the Day by Radley Balko in The Agitor, Saturday, March 4th, 2006

It’s from 2001. This one reads like a bad ’80s comedy. A couple of older women are needlessly terrorized. A bumbling small town sheriff keeps screwing up on his “get tough on drugs” mission. The raid is all the talk at the annual oyster festival. Characters ooze with folksy charm. Oh, and a National Guard helicopter conducts a drug raid on a tomato patch. I see John Candy as the sheriff. The Middlesex County prosecutor has asked Sheriff Guy L. Abbott to explain a drug bust that went awry when armed deputies burst into the wrong home and ordered a 50-year-old woman to the floor.

“We moved out of Richmond to get away from this stuff,” said Estelle Newcomb as she described the Oct. 26 incident that has left her shaken and dismayed. CONTINUED.

If you have a story about the Midlesex Sheriff Department, good or bad, we'd love to hear from you. Contact us confidentially at CONTACT.

"Police say NN officer tied up, threatened woman: Christopher E. Miner denies any wrongdoing during 'a social evening' at his home, lawyer says.

Peter Dujardin
NEWPORT NEWS, Jan 13, 2009 (Daily Press - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --

The Newport News police officer arrested on an abduction charge Sunday is accused of tying a woman to a bed with leather and chain restraints, taking her picture and threatening to post the image online if she refused to spend the night with him. . . Officer Christopher E. Miner 'grabbed her around the throat with his left hand and forced her back onto the bed,' according to a criminal complaint filed in Newport News General District Court."