Alb. Police Accuse Deputy of Impeding Probe

An Albemarle County sheriff’s deputy suspected of making up a story of how he was shot in March (see the recent story and discussion for details) has now been accused by Albemarle police of falsifying information and impeding the investigation, WINA reports. Steve Shifflett resigned from his job as a deputy when the charges became known. The timing of all of this is not particularly good for Sheriff Edgar Robb, who hired and has since defended his hiring of Shifflett, since Robb is currently running for reelection. 07/01 Update: Reed Williams has a story in today’s Progress, in which it’s stated that whether there is an investigation into this bizarre case is in the hands of Commonwealth’s Attorney Jim Camblos. Sheriff Robb says that he knew full well of Shiflett’s history at the time that he hired Shiflett, concluding that he’s “read to put this behind us.”

40 thoughts on “Alb. Police Accuse Deputy of Impeding Probe”

  1. OK, so this case might be totally insane, and there’s obviously something rotten in the Albemarle Sheriff’s office, but, that said, I’m calling it: Camblos will decide not to pursue this case, declaring that we should just put it behind us, as Robb said. The press will permit this to die quietly, and that will be that. I dare somebody to bet against me. :)

  2. Hey, if the guy made it up he should be prosecuted. It will only die if we let it…

  3. It will take a lot of work to have this go any other way. You’ve got a Republican Sheriff whose office is being investigated by a Republican Commonwealth’s Attorney, with the Republican-biased Daily Progress carrying most of the publicity burden.

    It’s hard to imagine that Ed Robb will be brought to account for his serious errors. Let this be a test case to see whether the stereotypical Republican cronyism extends to this local level.

  4. Exactamundo. The only way this thing will go further is if, by some weird chance, this story gets to the main league of stories. This is the way America operates: The most crazy things go unchecked, whilst others, once brought into the spotlight, and are overly and stringently observed. Let me give an example:

    On one side, we have an American public so made aware of the side-effects of alcohol, almost every locality has enforced ordinances forbidding alcohol consumption in public places (other than designated areas). On the other, you’ll see and hear mega-watt rap coming out from tricked-out cars. These may be so loud, you could be in a closed house with the dishwasher on right next to you, and you could be over-powered by the thumping of the car’s sound system. Whether there are ordinances on the books or not to limit “noise pollution”, these are rarely enforced.

    Now, let’s say there’s some study that comes out, from a renown and trusted source, and this story makes it to the big leagues, like second-hand smoke did. You’ll see almost every locality in the U.S. reinforce and suddenly enforce anti-noise-pollution laws. So the result is that a mature, reasonable adult can’t consume a glass of wine with his picnic in a public park, but young punks can ruine people’s peace at any time within the very confines of their own homes. THIS IS UTTER CRAZINESS.

    Another example: what if it was proven that highway trash devalues properties by a significant amount and this info hits the public spotlight: now you’ll see many well-to-do localities, like Cville, having cops actively ticket folks tossing cigarette butts out the window, plus we’d have tax-paid cleanup crews and equipment working ‘round the clock.

    Many of you will say what I am describing is nothing new and is “normal”. There is nothing normal about these kinds of extreme imbalances. This societal dysfunction originates in our most common mores and our decrepit and under-funded educational system.

    Back to this story about bad cops: unless this story becomes BIG, those in power will make it go away quietly, in spite of our institutional mechanisms to red flag it.

  5. I think it will go away, for lack of evidence. Not much has been explained. Obviously someone shot at him. I don’t see how they’re showing that what he said wasn’t true. I also dont understand why he would lie in the first place. If someone shot ME, I’d want them to be caught.

    Maybe it is true, maybe he did lie. But still, how do you prove it?

  6. It would be the same way if it were the Dems too. They’d try to cover it up if they could, right?

  7. They way they are talking about it, they know"something" happened, just not what he told them happened.

  8. Clinton got impeached b/c a groupie suck his dick, but Bush remains a hero no matter how many lies and misdeeds he does. I guess an Elephant is much more intimidating than a donkey! (It’s also much more easily controlled, exactly the way I see the average Republican).

  9. It wasn’t the d*ck sucking that got Clinton impeached. The scumbag lied to Congress and he lied to the citizens. Hell, wouldn’t it have been easier to just admit it, shrug you shoulders and say, "oh well…" Of course, look who performed the service. Would you want to admit being bl*wn by that pig?

  10. Who can say? (cough Ted Kennedy cough) But here’s a great example of aa politician getting it right. Howard Dean’s son was driving the getaway car while his buddies tried to steal liquor from a country club. They got caught in the act, and were all arrested. Dean’s son was charged as an accessory. Dean made a public announcement the day before he announced his candidacy (this is like, last week) about the situation, and said that he was not interfering in any way with the investigation or proceedings (aside from the obvious hiring of a lawyer). I’m sure his son got a serious tongue lashing for that ill-timed escapade. But the point is that by going with it and announcing what happened, no one could really say anything about it, and furthermore no one cared. It’s amazing that more politicians don’t just come clean like that. Of course, he had no choice because he’s running for president, but the results were clearly good. And Gore admitted to smoking pot in college and no one could ever say anything about that ever again because he wasn’t hiding anything. He learned that lesson from Clinton, no doubt. Meanwhile, Bill Bennett hid his gambling problem for god knows how many years while preaching a strict morality to everyone. We can all learn something from him: We should hide our sins for as long as possible until someone forces them into the public spotlight. Then admit that it was wrong and insist we won’t do it anymore.

  11. ‘Would you want to admit being bl*wn by that pig’

    Well when you got that ball buster Hillary for a wife, you have to take what you can get! :P

  12. "Obviously someone shot at him."

    Whoa, Lars – I haven`t followed the details very closely but I haven`t found anything to date which will indicate the cop could not have done all the shooting. In fact that was my first thought and I thought it was a "hero" crime at first suspicion..

    I thought various tests were run, i.e., ballistics , etc which would help prove/disprove/identify the gun used. If not the cop`s then ID points for later recoveries of weapons.At least furnish some negative proof if nothing else.

    Did I miss something here?

  13. " Reed Williams has a story in today’s Progress, in which it’s stated that whether there is an investigation into this bizarre case is in the hands of Commonwealth’s Attorney Jim Camblos"

    BUT THERE IS AN INVESTIGATION by our intrepid Guardians of Public Safety. How thorough

    it will be is another question. Perhaps Reed meant "whether CHARGES will be brought is up to Camblos".

  14. No question Robb didn`t use good judgement when he hired this man but that can be taken care of (we all hope) during the election.

    What the immediate problem is "Will the cop get away with falsifying his reports?" I equate this to a person making false statements under oath only a little worse as a cop has much power in his statements against a citizen.

    A cop making false statements (and there are a few – it`s a we – they thing in the courtroom) is a definite danger to everyone in the community.

    Prosecute this cop if he wilfully made false statements.

  15. yeah, how do we know someone shot at him? he wasn’t _shot_–he claims he was shot _at_. if there are no witnesses, how do we know for sure that he didn’t fire his own weapon (or fire another weapon)?

  16. they all lie to Congress and they all lie to the citizens–even, yes, "Honest" Dubya Bush. Clinton got impeached for it because fanatical anti-Clintonites were frothing to string him for something, anything, because it was driving them INSANE that he won two elections easily and they couldn’t get rid of him any other way–not because anyone really gives a damn about (a) presidents fooling around or (b) presidents lying.

    to repeat–they all lie, they all lie, they all lie. G. W. Bush has lied to us and will lie again. Only some presidents get impeached over lies, though.

  17. The story I read said he was shot once in the vest, and one round hit his car. If he shot himself in the vest, there would be powder burns all over it. They’d know it was done at point blank range.

    Who would shoot themselves in the vest? It would break your ribs! OUCH! And for what reason? To blame a non-existant black man?

    Sure, I wasn’t there, maybe he did shoot himself. But thats makes no sense.

  18. When all else fails, blame the press. As a Daily Progress alum, I could go on for days about all the things that are wrong with the paper, but a Republican bias in its reporting (as opposed to the editorial page) isn’t one of them. What examples do you have to back this claim up?

  19. to repeat–they all lie, they all lie, they all lie. G. W. Bush has lied to us and will lie again. Only some presidents get impeached over lies, though.

    ever notice it’s the Dems over the last 30 years or so that are vilified beyond repair? after Nixon, the republicans decided it would never happen again to them. even Jimmy Carter, a man with superior ethics, managed to be labeled “ineffectual” by a very large majority of Americans. they don’t understand the circumstances and the real achievements, but he’s nevertheless relegated to alternet write-ups and diplomatic obscurity.

  20. Who would shoot themselves in the vest? It would break your ribs! OUCH! And for what reason? To blame a non-existant black man?

    I said the same thing, until somebody pointed out something that made me feel stupid — he could have just taken off the vest. :)

  21. Hi Lars,

    He was wearing a new hi tech REMOVABLE vest perhaps or at least that was my line of thought.

  22. Investigators should have a handle on this to include the obvious –

    was it an under vest or outer?

    If under were there corresponding holes in both garments?

    If there were how well did they match?

    Was a spent bullet recovered? How was it deformed?

    Was the distance of penetration into the vest commensurate with the cop`s story?

    What was the angle of the bullet penetration into the car. Does it jive with postion of the alleged assailant? and on and on and on……..

  23. Then the republicans seem to have forgotten themselves, because boy are we ever gearing up for a scandal over war intelligence.

  24. Also what season was it? No problems with taking off your shirt if it’s not cold outside. And was there anything going on in his personal life that would be eased by having a story of being shot at? Like a wife being angry about something who would stop being angry with him because "thank god you’re still alive!"

  25. Lars, have you met any actual human beings? Do you understand how irrationally and bizarrely they can behave at times? "It doesn’t make any sense" you say–as if that means it’s not possible. People do incredibly f*cked up things all the time because of bizarre personal reasons. It makes sense to them at the time but to anyone else it sounds unbelievable.

  26. ta ta ta, how many times I must remind everyone in here I don’t like labels. I am not right wing this or left way that. I believe both sides are idiots. Instead of setting down and getting things done, we must pick and choose why the OTHER is so wrong. We can’t just say "hey lets work as a team" but no we get "i oppose you because you believe in….". I agree in some ascepts from both sides and then again I disagree with some other things too. That is why you can’t label moi.

  27. I don’t think that the Democrats would cover it up, if you’ll allow me to play armchair political scientist for a moment.

    The nearest useful model would be in Charlottesville, where the Democrats hold all but 1 elected office. If we experienced such a scandal here, I think that blame would probably be directed where it is due.

    We’ve got the same conservative-leaning primary newspaper for starters. But we also have a large, broad base of party leadership with competing factions and probably more potential candidates in general than there are seats to fill. A Democratic Sheriff gone astray in Charlottesville would be quickly held to account by other Democrats. The lack of serious, organized competition from other parties would remove major political concerns about losing the seat. They can afford honesty.

    In the County, I’ll be the first to admit that I am no expert on the organization of the GOP. But I certainly have not noticed any great effort to cultivate new leaders nor are there obvious competing factions. A scandal would taint their encumbent and create a political vaccum that the county Democrats (or an independent in the case of this upcoming Sheriff’s race) would be just as likely to fill as the Republicans. Thus it is in their party’s best interest to play down any potential scandal and overlook even major deficiencies in their elected officials.

  28. I prefer ta ta ta to tsk tsk tsk, maybe it was from the early childhood memories of getting in trouble who knows?

  29. Although you are probably right concerning the local political parties’ constituency and candidacy power-plays, I have a generalized political party psychological makeup to offer: republicans are typically much more simple-minded. As in:

    Live in poverty? Get a job.

    Have too many medical bills? Buy a better insurance policy.

    Saddam Hussein dissed our Prez? Take ’m out.

    A deputy-sheriff making false claims? Better the devil you know than the one you don’t.

  30. Even then, there would be even more evidence, he wouldnt have any bruising on his chest/abdomen. Also, if he called in a shooting, I’d guess backup would arrive in about 45 seconds. He’d have to put the vest back on, put his shirt back on, ditch the second gun, etc.

    We dont know, but the evidence they have would show if he was wearing the vest and if he was shot from a distance or not. Clearly they have SOME evidence showing he lied. Not an eyewitness, so perhaps they did find that he took it off, perhaps we’ll find out eventually.

  31. No, actually I don’t know any people. Perhaps this explains my ignorance.

    …or your misconceptions.

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