Sunday, July 22, 2007

More Kass Coverage

  • Michael Mette—the young Chicago police officer sentenced to an Iowa prison for 5 years for the crime of defending himself against an angry drunk in Dubuque—wanted to thank the readers of this column.
  • "To all the people who read your column, words can't express how it makes me feel to have this much support," Mette said. "Everybody is calling. It's in the news now, and it's tough to describe how good the support makes me feel. I just want people to know that I appreciate them."
  • A defense fund has been established, the Michael Mette Defense Fund, at the Northwest Community Credit Union, 7400 N. Waukegan Ave., Niles. And Chicago's Fraternal Order of Police—the police union—has come to his side.
Hopefully, this will help drive some big name national attention Mike's way. And some donations to defray what have to be enormous legal bills.

Labels:

35 Comments:

Blogger Vinnie said...

He wouldn't let the guy call 911. That doesn't look good. Right wrong or indifferent that act looks bad. But yes five years is excessive.

7/22/2007 12:57:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Australlian Brother Murdered

The Queensland Police Union (QPU) has revealed the man accused of the shooting death of Constable Brett Irwin was a violent criminal suspected of committing an armed hold-up not long before the fatal shooting.

Constable Irwin was shot dead on Wednesday night in Brisbane after he and a colleague went to the Keperra home of 29-year-old Craig Anthony Semyraha to speak to him about bail conditions relating to a previous offence.

Mr Semyraha was taken to hospital with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head, and died last night.

QPU acting president Denis Fitzpatrick says nothing could have prepared the two officers for what occurred.

"The reality of this is policing is an unknown quantity," he said.

"Every door we knock on, every car we pull over, every person we speak to in the course of our everyday duty - we don't know who is behind the door, we don't know who is driving the car.

"This was a normal and routine inquiry in the minds of both those police officers who attended."

A full police funeral will be held for Constable Irwin next Thursday at Brisbane's St Stephen's Cathedral.

The QPU says officers have been overwhelmed by the support from the public.

Mr Fitzpatrick says there has been a flood of public support for the police service in the aftermath of Constable Irwin's death.

"We have been inundated with emails of support at this office in fact, and frankly our website has crashed on at least three occasions with the number of emails we've received in support," he said.

"Well done Queenslanders - we thank you very genuinely for your support."

7/22/2007 03:38:00 AM  
Anonymous snethen said...

The bottom line is, they are gonna put this kid in jail! Can't we as just people, stop this? The law is wrong, the people are wrong,we are wrong. Sucks!!

7/22/2007 05:57:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Take care while out in public off-duty. I'm just surprised it don't happen more often. I've seen the way some people drink.

7/22/2007 06:46:00 AM  
Blogger Mike's 10-1 said...

Good morning!

Enjoy today's Sunday Tribune (Section 1, top of p. 2). The MMDF is off and running. Check our Web site (note "Mike" not "Michael"):

www.MikeMetteDefenseFund.com

Click on "About Us" for MMDF Committee membership.

We need all CPD districts and units to know about this outrage. Aside from conveying Mike's heartfelt gratitude to YOU, we ask for unit volunteers to circulate our message. You can contact us through the MMDF Web site or via Email at: TEN1mm@aol.com

Of the three million Iowans, we are happy to report that based on initial Iowa newspaper blog responses, our most formidable allies may well be the good citizens of the State of Iowa.

We understand that tomorrow, Mike will be interviewed on local WIND (AM 560) radio at 7 AM.

God bless you guys and our thanks to SCC for this forum!

MMDF:jn

7/22/2007 06:57:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have either of the PBPA organizations (sergeants-lieutenants) said or did anything in regards to Mette? Just asking.

7/22/2007 07:07:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you John Kass

7/22/2007 09:20:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember some months back some mongo-tard was on here bitching about the "liberal media" and Kass specifically being anti-police.I chalked it up to typical CPD stupidity,as I've never read a Kass column that didn't make sense on some level(unlike some of the rantings here).Now Kass is putting this injustice under a spotlight,thank God,and all the PO's are singing his praises.Just a note....before condemning someone here,make sure you know what the hell you're babbling about(kinda hard for the average copper),or maybe next time you'll alienate a potential ally.

7/22/2007 11:22:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good luck to you.

7/22/2007 11:28:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where is osama obama the new rock star from chicago? how about oprah? jackson? flaky?meeks?blago? OH SORRY GUESS NOT THIS IS A WHITE MAN IN TROUBLE THAT NEEDS HELP NOT A CRIMINAL SHITHEAD! WHERE IS DALEY? OBVIOUSLY NOT HOME! AGAIN THE CITY IS SILENT WHY THE FUCK SHOULD YOU DO ANYTHING ON THIS JOB EXTRA? THEY CANNOT EVEN SPEAK OUT ABOUT THIS GRAVE INJUSTICE! GOD BLESS JOHN KASS HE HAS BALLS! FUCK ALL THE OTHER JAGOFFS THAT RUN THIS CRIMINAL CITY! HEY I THOUGHT ALDERMAN BURKE THE ONE WHO DONOHUE LET HAVE A BOOK SIGNING AT OUR HALL FREE NO CHARGE TO USE OUR HALL HE SAYS NOTHING WHY? HE COULD CARELESS LIKE THE REST OF THE ALDRERTHIEVES! THIS CITY IS IN THE SHITTER AND I HOPE AND PRAY THE OLYMPIC COMMITTEE DOES NOT SELECT SHITCAGO!

7/22/2007 12:12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another $25 to the Mette Defense Fund.

7/22/2007 12:27:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This story needs some national coverage. Or perhaps a grass roots effort to get attention form the white house, in the hopes of getting a presidential pardon, all outgoing presidents pardon laods of folks on thier way out of office.

7/22/2007 12:52:00 PM  
Blogger Crimefile said...

We lost a Chicago Police hero:
http://crimefilenews.blogspot.com/2007/07/we-have-lost-another-hero.html

7/22/2007 01:36:00 PM  
Anonymous 10-1 said...

I would like to thank John Northern for his tireless efforts to right this terrible injustice. He has devoted his time, money and passion to help this kid. In addition, he has the spine to identify himself when he posts. Unlike the rest of us who fear we may have to endure all of the anonymous abuse. If I were in trouble, I would certainly want you in my corner sir.

7/22/2007 03:50:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

off topic:

Check out this website it has some pretty good stories. I didn't go through it extensively but enough to read a couple of good Chicago copper stories. From what I got looks like professional courtesy is hard to come by in Wisconsin and Virginia troopers.

www.copswritingcops.com

7/22/2007 06:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Or perhaps a grass roots effort to get attention form the white house, in the hopes of getting a presidential pardon,"

WTF Are you smoking? Border Patrol Agents Copean & Ramos currently sitting in a Federal Penitiary after being Railroaded by the US Attorney. The President has refused to grant them a Pardon.
So all you Right Wing Warriors
(including you SCC) that think for a minute this President& his adminstration have your best interests as a Police Officer& US Citizen @ Heart, KEEP DREAMING!!

7/22/2007 07:05:00 PM  
Blogger scarlett said...

New to this website. Enlightned by other retiree's about its existence. Glad to see retiring was a good thing for me. Somethings never change or just get worst with time. Do I miss being the Police? No, but I miss the officers and the good time I had on this job.

Thanks for the site and will visit often

7/22/2007 08:30:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vinnie, go f yourself....

7/22/2007 08:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank You John Kass!!!

I say that we all boycott BP(British Petroleum). BP wants to dump 6,400lbs of toxic sludge and ammonia a day into Lake Michigan at their Whiting,Indiana Refinery. The Refinery is located less than 10 miles from the water intake for Chicago's water purification plant.

No big deal its only our drinking water.

This doesn't look good to the Olympic Committee,Mr. Mayor.

Don't Buy BP Gasoline

7/22/2007 09:03:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

7/22/2007 12:12:00 PM

C'mon, this is white against white; jesse, meeks, obama and co. aren't interested in this. If any of the two were black, they'd be all over this.

7/22/2007 09:55:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who cares about Meeks, Jessee Jackson, etc-what about Phat Phil?! Where is that fat-ass when one of our own is truly in trouble and needs us? Phat Phil made sure he was around to hug Meeks after that fiasco with the poor Sgt and the street stop....Hey, Phat Phil-put the XL pizza down and do something for Mike Mette!

7/22/2007 11:50:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Mette Defense Fund link is already on the CPD blog.

So the Phil hater is wrong, as usual.

Take a pill, go back to your mom's basement, and chill.

Maybe the new Sup. will make you.
You poor simple fool.

7/23/2007 02:24:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Take care while out in public off-duty. I'm just surprised it don't happen more often. I've seen the way some people drink.

the p.o wasnt drinking....

7/23/2007 05:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Take care while out in public off-duty. I'm just surprised it don't happen more often. I've seen the way some people drink.

the p.o wasnt drinking....


yeah ok.........

7/23/2007 08:28:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just checked out the Mette sight on the web.

Capt. John Farrell and Northside are on the committee. Where's Cline and the exempts?

7/23/2007 10:57:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would never denounce Mark Donahue. He is a great leader. I have the utmost respect for him. I am nor running FOP president. Mark Donahue has great skills. I ENDORSE MARK DONAHUE FOR PRESIDENT OF THE FOP.

7/23/2007 12:02:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"So the Phil hater is wrong, as usual.

Take a pill, go back to your mom's basement, and chill.

Maybe the new Sup. will make you.
You poor simple fool."

Signed yours truly just trying to make Lt., Matt Cline

7/23/2007 12:22:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't Buy BP Gasoline

7/22/2007 09:03:00 PM

Want to guess who the supplier is to the City of Chicago? Yep...BP.

7/23/2007 05:12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the p.o wasnt drinking....

7/23/2007 05:27:00 AM

Yes he was. It's mentioned several times in the court decision.

I wish him nothing but the best, but I bet things would have been different from the start if he had told the truth to the first responding officer. Not a popular thing to say, but you all know it's true.

7/23/2007 05:17:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes he was. It's mentioned several times in the court decision.

I wish him nothing but the best, but I bet things would have been different from the start if he had told the truth to the first responding officer. Not a popular thing to say, but you all know it's true.

7/23/2007 05:17:00 PM

WHY DON'T YOU GO SOMEWHERE ELSE AND STIR UP TROUBLE. YOU'RE JUST A CIVILLIAN P O S!!!

7/23/2007 06:32:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there a benefit in the works? I would love to see it. How bout a rally? There are a lot of CPD,state, burbs, and county not only donating but also want Mike's voice heard.

7/24/2007 01:46:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

After reading the actual response from the County Prosecuter of Dubuque Iowa, Potter is his name... While there was some question as to Mettes' statements. One must first ask how does his statement of what happened warrant the arrest of him when clearly Gothard and Boyd started the altercation from the start.
No matter what Mette and friends did, from which I read, was NEVER physical until the point of defending himself on his brothers place of residence. Gothard and toady cannot use force or intimidation to recover their property, especially when they don't know who originally took the phone. How does this get left out when they (Attrnys) defend their positions ??
How does the Attorney's office get to speculate rather than go from the known facts. This Attorney's response is a joke and the fact that they all still fail to answer as to why Gothard wasn't charged with a crime continues to go unanswered.
Has there been a formal respone to this from Chicago on any level ?
C'mon guys.....this is only the beginning. I haven't heard of any protest, march, blue flue, nothing anymore. Us Joe citizens will be behind you if you continue to get it out there. We know the difference between the Mette's and the Abattes of the Police Department. We from our side wish to serve and protect the officers that do their job. We wish to stand by you. I know you are out there so know that we will fight for you. Thank You
FREE METTE

7/26/2007 02:17:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Mette should go on the lam to another country, and/or hide out in a religious sanctuary somewhere, as it's better than having a contract killing on him by some punk gang-bangers in an Iowa Penitentiary, for this B.S. This is another chapter of the failing of the Criminal Justice System in America, soon to be another 3rd World Country, in our childrens lifetime.

7/26/2007 11:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thursday, July 26, 2007 << County attorney fires back
Potter defends his office against criticism over the prosecution of a Chicago cop
By M.D. KITTLE TH staff writer


Dubuque County Attorney Ralph Potter is as mad as hell and he's not going to take it anymore.

In a pointed letter, the county's top prosecutor turns public defender, coming to the aid of his office and the local judicial system -- both under attack in a barrage of criticism involving the case of a Chicago cop convicted in a Dubuque assault.

"The attack on the integrity of our judicial system was unwarranted in light of the facts revealed in the investigation and trial of this matter," Potter wrote in what he describes as an open letter to the citizens of Dubuque County and the city of Chicago.

"The citizens of both communities have a right to know the facts," he wrote.

In the letter that he initially posted on a county Web site, he defends the assistant county attorney who prosecuted the case and the judge who earlier this month imposed the sentence, and he all but characterizes Michael Mette as a liar who failed to control his rage on the night in question.

"In Mr. Mette's case, it was clear that there were serious problems with his testimony," Advertisement


Potter wrote.

The case has garnered national attention, with some of Mette's fellow police officers and Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass among those coming to the defense of Mette, a man they insist was a victim of injustice in Dubuque County District Court.

The case

Dubuque police arrested Mette in the early morning of Oct. 9, 2005, after the off-duty cop knocked out Jacob L. Gothard, who at the time lived at 1130 Race St. The assault occurred near the intersection of Walnut and Rose streets.

Mette was stripped of his police powers and reassigned to a "less-sensitive position" shortly after the charges were filed, a Chicago Police Department spokesman told the Telegraph Herald in the newspaper's Oct. 22, 2005, edition.

Police also charged Mette's brother, Marc R. Mette, who lived at 1195 Walnut St. at the time of the altercation, and Gothard's roommate, Nicholas J. Boyd, with public intoxication.

Late last year, Mette was found guilty of assault with serious injury. Dubuque County District Court Judge Monica Ackley earlier this month sentenced Mette to five years in prison.

The dispute

Kass contends the charges and the sentence are a gross miscarriage of justice, that Mette was merely defending himself against two large drunken men who hounded him down the street. Kass claims the real evidence of the case shows Mette attempted to avoid a conflict, and that one of the men got into Mette's face and began pushing him, repeatedly, before the off-duty cop threw one punch and knocked him out.

In his letter, Potter agrees the case is a "tragedy and yet another example of the harm that results in the consumption of alcohol." He said the investigation shows Mette and five others entered the Race Street residence on Oct. 9, 2005, and that it would be "fair" to conclude that several individuals were intoxicated.

"Michael Mette was also arrested for intoxication that morning and refused a breath test," Potter wrote.

The trouble began, Potter asserts, when Gothard and Boyd asked the group to leave their residence. Gothard, according to court documents, threatened to call police when a member of Mette's group, Jason Crain, took Gothard's cell phone and hid it in the mailbox.

"In their initial statements to police, ... both Mr. Crain and Christopher Tanner identified Michael Mette as being involved in eventually breaking the phone," Potter wrote. And that is why, Potter asserts, Gothard and Boyd pursued the group of six men down the street.

Potter does not contest that Gothard was extremely intoxicated. The University of Dubuque athlete had a blood-alcohol level as high as 0.310, well above the legal limit at the time he shoved Mette.

The Chicago cop punched Gothard, knocking him unconscious.

Kass and others argue a man can only take so much, and that even a man sworn to uphold the law has his limits.

"(Gothard) was hurt, certainly, but if he hadn't liquored up and chased strangers and pushed them, he would have been fine," the columnist wrote.

Potter, like the prosecution, disputes Mette's "one-punch defense." Gothard suffered a broken cheekbone, multiple fractures to his nose, a broken jaw, according to court records. He had multiple hemorrhages on the brain. He had bruising on both buttocks and the sides of his arms and on his ribs, and he had lacerations to his face and head.

"The emergency-room physician, who was board certified, testified that these injuries would not have resulted from one blow," Potter wrote. "The defendant's expert witness disputed that finding, while acknowledging that some of the bruising was consistent with "defensive" injuries."

And a member of Mette's group testified that whoever was standing over Gothard when he fell, also was kicking him, Potter wrote.

"Can anyone justify kicking someone after they are incapacitated?" Potter wrote.

Potter, like Assistant County Attorney Tim Gallagher, said Mette offered three different explanations about how Gothard was injured, including one story in which Mette claimed Gothard had fallen down. But the blood on his shirt and the fresh injury to his knuckles did not support that account, Potter said.

The county attorney could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

The cold, hard facts

Kass did not respond to a TH request for an interview. He quoted Mette in his Sunday column titled, "Finally, wronged cop gets some support."

"To all the people who read your column, words can't express how it makes me feel to have this much support," Mette said. "Everybody is calling. It's in the news now, and it's tough to describe how good the support makes me feel. I just want people to know that I appreciate them."

"I'm going to prison for defending myself, for landing one punch on somebody who attacked me with both fists? That's what I can't believe." Mette said in the Chicago Tribune column.

He's about to be an ex-cop, according to Kass. Mette is losing his job as a Chicago police officer and, barring a successful appeal, in November will head to prison. Things admittedly could be tough for a former cop in prison.

Potter said such cases always are difficult. Under Iowa law, a conviction of such a felonious assault carries with it an automatic prison term. Potter said the prosecution was willing to bargain, but the defense didn't want to deal.

The county attorney stands by the process, however, asserting the facts that many of Mette's defenders have left out.

"There were clearly enough facts presented in this case to justify the filing of the charge," Potter wrote. "There was also enough evidence for a court to find Mr. Mette guilty."

I just thought people on this blog should read what Iowans are saying about the case. Clearly, Gothard took more of a beating than any of us knew, by Chicago new reporting anyway. And while I have contributed myself to the Mette Defense Fund, he clearly has not explained the other injuries detailed in this news article.

7/27/2007 12:55:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To that last post...Those are speculations as to how he received his injuries. Not one person has spoken of why Gothard avoided any arrest for his actions. When someone attacks you physically, you are permitted to defend yourself and when someone, who is a head taller than me starts punching me, I will not stop striking until they no longer pose a threat. THERE IS NO ONE PUNCH & FLEE RULE ! Gothard started the whole thing and thats what people are pissed off about. Could it have been handled differently. Sure. But one person continued their assault until it became a battery, plane and simple. Lights out.
This is why we citizens don't trust our Judicial system. Judges, Politicians and yes, sometimes Policemen can alter the facts and play the smear game in the press.
This is one of those times that the more this Attorney's office in Iowa distorts the facts, the more it smells like Nifong!
Why hasn't this been addressed by your Union in the TV media ? Where is the pressure ?? Hasn't anyone, especially the inept lawyers that this poor officer has, come forward to start the media push. That's what the gangbangers do, don't they.
WTF !

7/27/2007 10:55:00 AM  

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