#cclivechat recap May 4, 2012

sum it up #cclivechatThis #cclivechat has as guest David Swinson, a retired DC cop turned author. 

David was assigned to the Special Investigations Bureau/Major Case and after that to the (now defunct) Career Criminal Unit. He specialized in what became known as “Narco Fencing” and worked with HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking).

Many of his cases were international in scope. His area of specialization (burglary, fencing, trafficking in stolen goods and narcotics) made him a valuable partner to assist with Cold Case, Homicide and the United States Attorney’s Office.

David Swinson began his career at the height of the punk rock movement in the early 1980s. After attending California State University as a film major, he booked and promoted punk rock and alternative music at Fender’s Ballroom, Melody Dance Center and Bogart’s Nightclub in Long Beach, California.

Swinson is a highly decorated member of the Metropolitan Police Department, having received numerous awards including the department’s prestigious Detective of the Year Award for 2003; Meritorious Service Medals for significant, outstanding and sustained achievements; Achievement Medals of Honor for a significant case investigation and several Department of Justice, United States Attorney’s Annual Law Enforcement Awards for significant case investigations. He has also received two major awards from Target Corporation for outstanding community service.

We spoke about David’s book, his career and of course, cops on television! Hilarious how they draw their gun and point it up the sky. Till the next #cclivechat. The verbatim thread is below.

Vidocq_CCIt is noon and that means time for another cold case live chat. Our guest: David Swinson a.k.a. @casejeackets on Twitter! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 15:59:55 +0000
Vidocq_CCDavid is a retired DC cop and the author of the book "a detailed man" see here http://t.co/4xKJmJn4 #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:00:35 +0000
casejacketsHello. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:00:37 +0000
Vidocq_CCWelcome, David and thanks for chatting with us. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:00:55 +0000
Vidocq_CCCan you start by telling us a little about your career? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:01:16 +0000
casejacketsInteresting forum. Looking forward to chatting. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:01:32 +0000
bischofield@Vidocq_CC @casejackets Also concert promoter (!) big change to cop, why? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:02:51 +0000
casejacketsJoined The DC pole Dept in the early 90s. Started in uniform, moved to plainclothes, then investigator and promoted to detective #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:02:51 +0000
CriminalBlawgRT @vidocq_cc: David is a retired DC cop and the author of the book "a detailed man" see here http://t.co/FlWhLnkP #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:03:14 +0000
GavWardRT @vidocq_cc: David is a retired DC cop and the author of the book "a detailed man" see here http://t.co/U4CCuNOi #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:03:15 +0000
Vidocq_CC@bischofield Hi Brenda! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:03:28 +0000
Vidocq_CC@CriminalBlawg Thanks, Gavin! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:03:51 +0000
casejacketsI specialized in what became known as "narco fencing", taking one burglar and moving up the chain. Fencing, organized crime. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:03:53 +0000
casejackets@bischofield Yes, early 80s promoted punk and alternative concerts. Fun times. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:04:21 +0000
casejacketsMy last assignment was with Major Case and a Federal unit. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:05:00 +0000
bischofield@casejackets What was your biggest case? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:05:08 +0000
casejacketsWorked closely with the U.S. Attorney's Office in DC, debriefing and assisting prosecutors. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:05:52 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets So how long were you a police officer (all years all ranks together)? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:06:12 +0000
casejackets@bischofield Had several. Some very sensitive. One in particular that is public info involves working with USSS. 2 year op #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:07:02 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC I retired early after 16 years. Serious spinal injury. Not police related. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:07:34 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets Links, please! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:07:52 +0000
casejacketsBrenda, the case led to small storefront in DC that had a stable of burglars who targeted government buildings. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:08:49 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Links? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:09:40 +0000
casejackets@bischofield This little storefront managed to get their burglars into some of the most sensitive government buildings #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:11:34 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets The case that is public info, where can we find it? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:11:34 +0000
casejackets@bischofield They primarilystole laptops for info #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:12:08 +0000
bischofield#cclivechat I think all in UK are busy listening to election results and autopsy...Fri, 04 May 2012 16:12:22 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Washington Post did a little story on it, but didn't know the scope of the investigation, just the USSS burglary #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:13:03 +0000
bischofield@casejackets As janitors? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:13:03 +0000
Vidocq_CC@bischofield The election is getting an autopsy? How rude! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:13:10 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets What does USSS stand for? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:13:46 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC United States Secret Service. More public info in Superior court so I can talk about certain aspects. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:14:57 +0000
bischofield@casejackets So would it have been more for political information than general thieves? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:15:57 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC The case did lead to certain sensitive Middle Eastern countries. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:16:03 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets When you joined the police academy, what did you wanted to do? Homicide, traffic, etc? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:16:18 +0000
Vidocq_CCYou must have worked on cold cases as well. Can you describe how you go about investigating them? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:17:10 +0000
casejackets@bischofield For certain operations both the info and resale of stolen items. For the burglar, simply good money for narcotics. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:17:14 +0000
bischofield@bischofield @casejackets Or SS information for fraud? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:17:26 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Always wanted to be a detective. Not Homicide. I liked robbery and burglary. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:18:00 +0000
casejackets@bischofield It was an office of that agency that specialized in Protection. Doubt fraud. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:19:09 +0000
bischofield@casejackets @Vidocq_CC Did you have many informants? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:19:12 +0000
casejackets@bischofield Primarily worked with cooperators (informants) or what we called, Special Employees. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:20:20 +0000
casejacketsOkay, so where are all my US friends? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:20:48 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets I don't know, check your twitter stream! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:21:41 +0000
casejacketsInformants are, of course, the best source for gathering intel. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:21:43 +0000
bischofield@casejackets By SS I meant Social Security ie getting SS numbers to commit fraud. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:21:54 +0000
Vidocq_CCAny with a burning question for a retired cop? @casejackets loves to hear from you! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:22:11 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets Informants can be tricky as well! 🙂 #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:22:32 +0000
casejackets@bischofield Although that happens, it is not what most fencing ops are after. They want resale to further criminal enterprise #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:23:34 +0000
casejackets@bischofield Sometimes they want sensitive information and yes, that would include identity theft. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:24:13 +0000
Vidocq_CCForget about the others who were supposed to check in here. Where did the idea for the book come from? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:24:53 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Yes, especially when dealing with those addicted to crack or heroin. You know their primary motivation. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:25:06 +0000
casejacketsSome became informants as a result of an on going plea agreement in case. Trying to work off time. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:25:48 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets Correct! And they may use you to set up someone else. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:25:51 +0000
bischofield@casejackets Did you ever have to use your gun? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:26:16 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC A Detailed Man was something I always had in my head. It took many forms over the years. Came to me when I got BP #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:26:49 +0000
casejackets@bischofield Thankfully, no. Came close more than once, though. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:27:25 +0000
casejacketsThe book has a long history. Started it around 2005. Finished when I retired. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:28:03 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets That is so interesting. All the good cops almost never draw their guns despite what we see on TV. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:28:22 +0000
bischofield@casejackets What is your opinion of "Stand Your Ground"? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:28:53 +0000
casejacketsEnded up getting a great agent and then a small indie publisher. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:28:56 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets And they all draw the gun pointing at the sky! I'm always afraid birds get hurt. 😀 Never saw a real cop do that! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:29:38 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC That's why it is hard watching those shows. If I shot one person a week, they'd retire me early. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:30:00 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC We're taught to use the "tuck" position, pointed tight, toward ground, finger always off the trigger. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:30:49 +0000
Vidocq_CCRT @casejackets: @Vidocq_CC Thats why it is hard watching those shows. If I shot one person a week, theyd retire me early. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:30:51 +0000
bischofield@casejackets @Vidocq_CC Don't know about that, they manage to get away with it in Miami! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:31:19 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets But too many believe that is the reality. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:31:20 +0000
casejacketsThese cops on TV don't even go on administrative leave after a shooting. Simply work the next day. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:31:28 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Yes, they do. Every cop related shooting, good or bad is investigated thoroughly. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:32:42 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets Exactly, and they crack the crime scene in 40min flat! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:33:05 +0000
casejackets@bischofield Not familiar with anything in Miami. What specifically? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:33:17 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets I think Brenda is referring to the Zimmerman-Martin case. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:34:16 +0000
bischofield@casejackets They seem to have a lot of cop related shootings. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:34:58 +0000
WardBlawgRT @vidocq_cc: Any with a burning question for a retired cop? @casejackets loves to hear from you! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:35:22 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Ahh, that was a neighborhood watch guy, not a cop. He should not have been allowed to carry a weapon. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:35:48 +0000
Vidocq_CCBack to the book, did the ending ever change over the years? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:36:43 +0000
casejackets@bischofield Yes, but they still have to investigate those shootings. DC has several cop related shootings. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:36:48 +0000
bischofield@Vidocq_CC @casejackets No, I was asking opinion of "Stand Your Ground" re Zimmerman - not cop related. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:37:40 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Several times. I preferred to leave it open ended. More realistic. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:37:42 +0000
Vidocq_CC@mmessina_author @casejackets use hashtag #cclivechat so we all see thisFri, 04 May 2012 16:37:44 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC I think that some of my friends here might not be using the hashtag. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:39:15 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Working on that right now. Tentatively titled, Public Servant. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:39:44 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets I think you are right! But they should be able to see it from other tweets! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:40:01 +0000
pwmullenRT @Vidocq_CC: Any with a burning question for a retired cop? @casejackets loves to hear from you! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:40:43 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets Sequal or series? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:40:43 +0000
Vidocq_CC@pwmullen Hi Peter! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:41:16 +0000
casejacketsRT @pwmullen: RT @Vidocq_CC: Any with a burning question for a retired cop? @casejackets loves to hear from you! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:41:27 +0000
casejacketsCold cases? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:41:48 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets always a good topic! How many have you investigated? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:42:34 +0000
Vidocq_CCWhat is the biggest obstacle for cops investigating cold cases? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:43:26 +0000
casejacketsI've assisted on several. Even after I retired. Latest one from 1999. A burglary gone bad. On going so can't be specific. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:43:46 +0000
Vidocq_CCDoes every police department have a cold case website? Is there funding available for that? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:43:48 +0000
Vidocq_CCIs there one particular cold case that stands out? Can be national. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:44:26 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Lack of evidence, no witnesses or no one wants to talk. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:44:39 +0000
bischofield@Vidocq_CC @casejackets Shouldn't think they bother with cold cases on receiving/robbery, could be wrong! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:44:52 +0000
Vidocq_CCWill we ever solve them: Nathalie Holloway, JonBenet Ramsey and Lauren Spierer? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:45:01 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC I know that DC doesn't. I don't think they have the committed man power. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:45:11 +0000
GavWard@casejackets Hi David, do you find that Twitter hinders or enhances your writing? cc @pwmullen @Vidocq_CC #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:45:37 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets You can refer them to me! 🙂 #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:45:55 +0000
Vidocq_CC@GavWard Good question, Gavin! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:46:13 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Yes, the one from 1999. What I can share is public. Lady stays home sick, goes to store and is surprised by burglar #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:46:14 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC She's strangle with her own telephone cord by suspect, who years later ends up being one of my guys. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:47:00 +0000
casejackets@GavWard Hi Gavin, Twitter is challenging. I definitely have to choose my words carefully. So that enhances it. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:48:05 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Case was closed with very circumstantial evidence, just this year. My notes from that time period assisted. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:49:00 +0000
casejackets@bischofield Can you clarify? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:50:14 +0000
Vidocq_CC10min warning, folks! If you have any questions for a retired cop, ask them now! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:50:21 +0000
casejackets@GavWard As far as the social media aspect, it sometimes takes away from what I should be doing. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:51:07 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets @gavward Distracting? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:52:25 +0000
casejacketsI've also assisted in closing cold cases as a result of a search warrant. The smallest item of evidence - especially jewelry #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:52:56 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets Do you focus on 1 or 2 sites or do you use several social media platforms? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:53:02 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC I primarily use Twitter and Facebook. Starting to get into Goodreads and BO.LT it #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:54:17 +0000
bischofield@casejackets Meaning time spent on serious homicide cold cases rather than robbery. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:54:20 +0000
Vidocq_CC@casejackets I see the distraction there: four platforms plus website plus blog! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:55:17 +0000
casejackets@bischofield They are all treated equally. Obviously, because of the nature of homicide more man power and resources. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:55:52 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Yes, I sometimes think I need two laptops. One that restricts me from social media and lock up the one that doesn't. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:56:44 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC I need to devote more time to writing, but do enjoy social media. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:57:44 +0000
Vidocq_CCSo you have more ideas for more books? Same characters? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:58:12 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC I started when MySpace was a cool site, met a lot of friends there. Still friends. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:58:25 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Yes, I'm not done with Simeon yet. I'm a fan of Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo so I want to take him through a period #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 16:59:45 +0000
Vidocq_CCThank you, David for being here and apologies for the low turn out. Hope you'll come back soon! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 17:00:24 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Maybe take him through the course of a few years, or just all four seasons. Don't know. #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 17:00:45 +0000
casejackets@Vidocq_CC Yes, regardless of turn-out this was fun. Had several friends who said they'd be on. Who knows? #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 17:01:31 +0000
Vidocq_CCHave to sign off, folks. Recap later on DCC. Thanks again, David! #cclivechatFri, 04 May 2012 17:01:36 +0000