Police Abuse

'F*CK DPD' Sign Leads to Felony Hoax Bomb Charge in Denver

Man faces up to 3 years in prison, $100,000 fine if convicted.

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booking photo

A man who says police mistook his anti-police sign, which he says was written on a card board box he taped to his parked BMW SUV, is now facing a count of "hoax explosives and incendiary devices," a class-five felony that comes with up to 3 years in prison and up to a $100,000 fine.

Charlie Dent told Denverite he was upset over the manners of a Denver cop who had written him a speeding ticket when he decided to put up a sign on his parked SUV that said "Fuck DPD," saying he knew not to say anything to the cop at the time because "you can't do nothing to a cop."

Dent says after his first two signs were blown away by the wind, he wrote "Fuck DPD" on a shoe box-sized cardboard box and used electrical tape to attach it to his parked SUV. The morning after he was ticketed and put up the sign he told Denverite he returned home from work to find cops surrounding his SUV. Police told him staff from the elementary school across the street called them, according to Hunt, who also suggested police mistook an LED light and red button connected to the car for a bomb part.

Police arrested Dent "for having an explosive device displayed," according to a statement of probable cause provided to Reason by the district attorney's office.

"A sign displaying 'Fuck DPD' along with a series of wires, electrical components, and metal tube prominently displayed upon the hood of" the car, the statement read. "The sign, along with wiring and device appeared to be an explosive device intended to draw and cause alarm."

The arresting officer added in his report that vehicle was also parked within 100 feet of an "active/open elementary school."

Dent says when he asked officers on the scene if he was going to jail over this, they told him it depended on "what side of the bed the bomb squad woke up on."

Since his arrest, Dent says he was suspended from work after requesting to take off on his court date and asked to move out of his apartment by his landlord.

Denverite notes that the law the felony cites "doesn't give a lot of guidance on this charge, simply saying that it applies to anyone who possesses 'false, facsimile, or hoax' devices.

The DPD referred questions for comment to the district attorney's office, which provided the probable cause statement.

h/t Dan S

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  1. He should have gone with “homemade clock”.

      1. Stop whining. Sloppy’s Mom had it coming.

  2. Sue the Denver Police Department until they have to lay people off. Serves them right.

    There is zero probable cause for this charge.

    FUCK DPD!!!!!!!

    Come charge me with any crime you chickenshit cops.

    1. Unbelievable. I mean yeah I can believe it but jesus. These cops should be fired for incompetence or jailed for malice.

      1. Why does it have to be either/or? Can’t it be both/and?

    2. Sue the Denver Police Department until they have to lay people off.

      You misspelled “raise taxes to pay the settlement.”

  3. But Hunt says that the car contained an LED light connected to a red button for illumination purposes…

    Ugh. Those things are so obnoxious. I support this arrest.

    1. It’s probably the same school that called the cops on the child wizard who turned his peanut and jelly into a .357 by chewing on it.

  4. Something, something, don’t bomb like a thug.

  5. Jake Gyllenhaal has really let himself go since his hair fell out.

  6. Is the guy’s name Charlie Hunt or Charlie Dent?

  7. “A sign displaying ‘Fuck DPD’ along with a series of wires, electrical components, and metal tube prominently displayed upon the hood of” the car, the statement read.

    Pics or it didn’t happen.

    1. This is what I was going to say.

      His story and the police story are fundamentally incompatible. He says he just grabbed a shoe box after the other signs blew away – a mildly dubious assertion given the electrical tape on hand – and taped it to the car.

      The police say wires, electrical components and metal tube. Not the same thing at all.

      I’m gonna guess that he did in fact make a really crappy and obviously not at all serious fake bomb. The police report might be full of bullshit, but going from shoe box to all those bits and pieces is too big of a jump. And they will have photos. The journalist should have gotten copies of the photos before running with the story.

      1. The follow-on to this is that if in fact he is telling the truth and there was simply a cardboard box with writing on it taped to the hood of an unremarkable SUV, the police should be charged with filing a false report, kidnapping, disturbing the peace and anything else the DA can tag on. If the photos show a cardboard box and then they have pictures of some aftermarket LED kit on the car or a block heater as has been suggested here, there is no way they should be able to walk away from this. Under that scenario, this isn’t a mistake, they intentionally misused their power to falsely accuse this guy and they should rightly be in jail.

  8. Meanwhile, his landlord has asked him to move out, said Hunt, a divorced father of one.

    Oh shit… Wait until his ex-wife’s lawyer gets wind of this. He’ll be lucky if ever sees his kid again.

  9. This is a perfect illustration of why I finally came out fully and proudly as a libertarian.

    This is government thuggery, plain and simple. They knew damn well it wasn’t meant to be taken for a bomb. They just wanted to nail a guy who dared to insult them.

    1. I admire your courage. Stunning and brave. I haven’t fully come out politically to my family and friends yet, other than maybe a muttered complaint after we bombed Syria that we’re now on John McCain’s fifth term in office

      1. Do it! It’s the closest you can come to feeling like a wrestling heel.

    2. It’s #1 in the list of eight reasons Why I Am Not A Conservative Republican:

      1. Criminal Justice: Conservative Republicans are rightly critical of arrogant bureaucrats brutally abusing their power – until it comes to police, prosecutors, and prison guards, at which point they turn into weak-kneed fan girls, screaming ecstatically in support of “Law and Order!”

  10. Sorry but this guy was out of order,

    If you have an issue with a ticket you would take it up with the officer at the time.

    But sticking up a ‘profane’ sign, allegedly in full view of a school – presumably containing CHILDREN for christsake, in this day and age is just asking for trouble.

    He will have his day in court and I would be interested to read the transcript.

    1. You must be one of those naive parents who has never been on a school bus in their life.

    2. “…presumably containing CHILDREN for christsake, in this day and age is just asking for trouble.”

      Well, if it’s for the chillunz, why not just let the cop shoot him?
      Stuff it.

  11. A sign displaying ‘Fuck DPD’ along with a series of wires, electrical components, and metal tube prominently displayed upon the hood of” the car,

    I don’t normally side with the cops in cases like this, but if you make a fake bomb then you takes your lumps. I mean seriously. This was NOT a fake sign, it was a fake bomb. Across. From. A. School.

    Maybe in a perfect libertarian world he would not go to jail, but he would at least be paying for the expense of having the bomb squad called out, plus punitive.

    If you poke a bear with a stick you don’t have the right to whine when you get mauled.

    1. Nope. Ticket, misdemeanor disturbing the peace, and like a $500-$1K fine at most.

      The assumption and escalation on the part of schoolteachers, police, and/or the bomb squad is bullshit. If they legitimately thought it was a bomb some Sr. Bomb Squad official should be on call to peak inside the box. The kind(s) of bombs that kill people inside buildings 100 ft. away don’t have wires hanging out the side advertising what they are. From the description and the mistaken LED, there’s no reason not to assume that the ‘wires hanging out’ wasn’t the block heater of his diesel SUV.

      The automatic assumption that everything’s a bomb, whether it is or not, means every pressure cooker and cardboard box with a modestly intelligible swear word on it within sight of an elementary school are suddenly felonies.

      1. From the description in the article, the wires and electronic components weren’t built into the box/sign, just ‘displayed on the hood’
        That description could easily fit after-market lights and the whole police report the usual creative fiction they spew when they see the opportunity to fuck with someone who has defied/pissed them off.

        1. You see a mystery box with a car underneath, I see 2-tons of shape charge elaborately made up to look like an SUV.

          Sure, the facts prove you right and me to be an idiot but when it comes to enforcing the law, we ignore the facts and just look at mens rea. And by mens rea I don’t mean what the criminals actual intent was but what the worst possible intent could be dreamed up in the mind of a person already demonstrated to be wrong or a moron.

          You say it’s a pairing knife, I say it’s a multiple homicide device and that you should serve 4 yrs. for leaving it in view of someone who might be triggered by it.

  12. Denverite notes that the law the felony cites “doesn’t give a lot of guidance on this charge, simply saying that it applies to anyone who possesses ‘false, facsimile, or hoax’ devices.

    As interpreted by the authorities making the arrest. So that kid who made a clock in that school? Justified arrest.

  13. police mistook

    No, they didn’t. They know exactly what they’re doing. And nothing else will happen.

  14. A picture is worth 1000 words. Not providing one says a lot more.

    1. Not providing one says a lot more.

      Where I come from it says, “Not guilty.”

  15. Sports wife studies the issues closely, decides Trump is a big poopy-head:

    “Ayesha Curry on Trump’s proposed budget cuts: ‘It’s devastating'”
    http://www.sfgate.com/politics…..101768.php

    To be honest, she seems to be the average well-endowed dingbat, but the Chron needed one more ‘I hate Trump’ story, so they ran her idiocy.

  16. And no, that is not me. However, I have ran into these assholes before. When that dick of a police chief (too buzzed to recall his name, Gates maybe?) was fired for costing LA too much money, to know who hired him? DPD.
    You know who threatened to beat me while I was in handcuffs? One of the oh-so-brave-threaten-a-guy-in-cuffs members of DPD. (One of these days I’m gonna run across that pussy and see how brave he is when I’m not helpless).
    DPD is staffed, like most police departments, by idiot assholes.

  17. The guy sounds like he belongs in the nuthouse, not prison.

    1. He’s no Bastiat. Maybe a Bradley Chelsea Manning. Looking forward to his insanity celebrated transitioning.

  18. “faces”…”up to”…”if convicted”…

    1. Which fits perfectly into the “overcharge and force a plea” narrative. Then your life is serially screwed with by petty officials for the rest of eternity.

      If all is as described, it sounds like it was pretty obviously not a bomb (the police huddled about his SUV. If they really believed it was a bomb, they would never have done such a thing. So the “we thought it was a bomb” part of the narrative is a lie). So at most he should be charged with disturbing the peace, which is a stretch for purely political speech, which this is.

  19. Dent says when he asked officers on the scene if he was going to jail over this, they told him it depended on “what side of the bed the bomb squad woke up on.”

    Yes, because what is just must always be determined by the mood of your local gang of psychopaths.

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