Too Bad

Wednesday, January 7th, 2009

I can’t say that I blame him, but this is disappointing:

Former Ohio State football player Derrick Foster is expected to plead guilty to felony charges in connection with shooting two Columbus police officers, 10TV reported Wednesday.

Foster is scheduled to plead guilty to the felony charges on Friday, 10TV’s Maureen Kocot reported.

The former defensive end, who played at Ohio State from 1998 to 1992, is expected to serve time in prison as part of the plea.

The shootings occurred last April during a raid at a suspected East Rich Street crack house.

Officer Tony Garrison was shot in the arm and undercover narcotics Officer John Gillis was wounded in the leg, 10TV News reported.

Foster admitted going to the house to gamble and told investigators he never heard officers identify themselves before initiating the raid.

The house appears to have been a dice/gambling house, not a “crack house.”  Last I read, no one in the house had been charged with a drug crime, including Foster. If anyone has, I haven’t seen it reported in the local media. The raid was the third raid of the night for that particular Columbus SWAT team.

Foster had no prior criminal record, and in fact had an exemplary employment record as a code inspector for the city of Columbus. He also had a legal permit for the gun he used, and has said he thought the place was being robbed.  When several of Foster’s friends and acquaintances wrote letters to the judge vouching for his character, arguing that he wasn’t the kind of person who would knowingly shoot at a police officer, the police union initiated an intimidation campaign against them.

I’m actually surprised the prosecutors offered him a plea. It may be an indication that they weren’t confident trying him on the attempted murder charges.  Shooting at cops generally isn’t the type of charge for which a DA will cut you a break.

Still, if Foster was offered a decent deal, you can’t blame him for taking it.  An attempted murder conviction against two cops would put him away for a long time.

MORE: The Columbus Dispatch reports that one person in the house was charged with possession of cocaine.

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14 Responses to “Too Bad”

  1. #1 |  Mike Leatherwood | 

    What would I do in his case? I shudder to think about it. What would you do?

  2. #2 |  Danno49 | 

    “The former defensive end, who played at Ohio State from 1998 to 1992

    My guess is an OSU grad wrote this.

  3. #3 |  Ginger Dan | 

    I put good money that he can’t get his job back as a City Inspector after he serves time for his “crime”. This sucks…

  4. #4 |  Marty | 

    we’re all criminals today- they just drew his number. no telling how many other lives were wrecked by this swat team…

  5. #5 |  BamBam | 

    You maintain your innocence no matter what The State intimates as consequences for not acquiescing to their Authoritah. Doing otherwise means compromising your principles, yielding your innocence to intimidation and lies, and giving further power to these tactics. If it makes you a martyr, so be it.

  6. #6 |  SusanK | 

    Nice advice, BamBam, but it takes a special kind of person to be a “martyr” and a person who was unlucky enough to have his or her number drawn by the state may not be ready to do so.
    I’ve thought about this lots of times – about breaking laws I disagree with and fighting them through the courts to protests them. Problem is, I’m not willing to gamble my profession away on a felony conviction so I flat out don’t do it. It leaves me with the ineffective means of testifying in front of legislative committees and considering a run for elected office, knowing my views would keep me from ever getting elected.
    Sorry to be such a downer, but I don’t see anything short of a revolution to change our country’s current state.

  7. #7 |  Cynical In CA | 

    Yet another example of the State rallying around its own.

    I reiterate:

    A police officer acting in official capacity and not for direct personal gain and without malintent has license to kill.

    Foster is lucky to be alive.

    We citizens are all Foster.

    We are all lucky to be alive.

    There is a war on. Get it?

  8. #8 |  BamBam | 

    I’ve thought about this lots of times – about breaking laws I disagree with and fighting them through the courts to protests them.

    This is breaking laws because you disagree with them. This thread, and what I refer to, is being accused of a crime/s that you know you didn’t commit, e.g. false accusations. In a case like that, you should NEVER plea to a deal. I know I’d rather die than admit to something I didn’t do, and then be punished for it.

  9. #9 |  Travis | 

    I may just be blind, but what crime did he end up pleading guilty to?

  10. #10 |  Marty | 

    #8 | BamBam-

    I agree with what you’re saying, but I really don’t know what I’d do. To me, it looks like being sued- even though you know it’s bullshit, it might make a lot more sense to settle vs. spend more than the settlement to prove you were right.

    He may have settled because he’d rather do a little time and be done vs having a long trial (in which he may remain locked up) and walk away with a clear name, but spend more in money and time fighting it.

  11. #11 |  Cynical In CA | 

    Re: #11 | Marty

    The economics of justice.


    He who has the gold makes the rules.

    Maybe BamBam is on to something though …

  12. #12 |  OneByTheCee | 

    #11 Marty:

    … do a little time and be done …

    I seriously doubt Mr. Foster’s troubles will be over when he completes his sentence.

    I would not be the least bit surprised to hear in the future, that his probation/parole officer in cohoots with the police, will fuck with him at every opportunity and try to get him back into the slammer or worse, set him up and kill him.

    And that’s only if he survives prison.

    The transparent (finally police transparency!) but blatant witness intimidation speaks for itself as to how far the police will go to get what they want and quite frankly, I think they want blood.

  13. #13 |  Marty | 

    great point, 12. around here, you can’t even rent in most of the mobile home parks if you have a felony conviction. employment in a tight market will be… difficult.

    adding vindictive cops to the mix would make things ugly, indeed.

  14. #14 |  Ahcuah | 

    Foster has been sentenced to 5 years.

    Story here.