Video of drunk, heavily-armed East Cleveland cop impersonator with narcotics exposes cover-up

Joe Marche’s Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy (OPOTA) credentials had expired when Bratenahl police found him drunk, armed and possibly drugged with bottled narcotics behind the wheel of an unmarked public safety vehicle on December 22, 2017 outside East Cleveland’s jurisdiction where he worked. 

The booking video Mariah Crenshaw of Chasing Justice obtained through a public records request is disgustingly eye-opening. At the moment Bratenahl police interacted with him Marche was in violation of Section 109:2-18-06(A) of Ohio’s administrative code and impersonating a peace officer.

” … any peace officer or trooper who, in any calendar year, fails to comply with the continuing professional training requirements set forth in paragraphs 109:2-18-01 to 109:2-18-07 of the Administrative Code shall cease carrying a firearm and shall cease performing the functions of a peace officer or trooper until such time as evidence of compliance is filed with the executive director.”

Bratenahl police shine a flashlight on the sleeping drunken cop impersonator, Joe Marche, right before he wakes up and tries to flee.

Ohio cops are mandated to obtain 24 hours of training annually.  The office of the Ohio Attorney General under Richard Michael DeWine doesn’t show any records where Marche and his City of East Cleveland appointing authority trained him and maintained records of his training. 

The “appointing authority” for cops in Ohio cities is the mayor.  Sections 109:2-18-02(A) and 109:2-18-05(A) require all mayors in their official capacity as a cop’s appointing authority to make sure they’re trained annually using a written syllabus, lesson plan, credentialed instructors and a sign-in sheet.  Since training and keeping records are duties of the office of mayor, mayors who don’t are criminally engaging in “dereliction of duty.” 

The mayors are also criminally-conspiring with individuals impersonating peace officers when they let a cop with expired credentials work past the date his or her OPOTA training deadline isn’t met.  It’s no different than an expired drivers license.  On the minute a peace officer’s credentials expire the mayor, safety director, chief of police, prosecuting attorney and judge who engages them as peace officers are conspiring to violate the rights of the citizens the impersonator stops, searches, cites, arrests and pursues charges against.

Bratenahl cops broke the rear window glass to the undercover public safety vehicle Marche drove as a cop impersonator without valid Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy credentials. The broken glass covers several of the weapons found in the cop impersonator’s possession.

Ohio’s operating a vehicle while under the influence law makes it a mandatory felony for a person to be drunk, driving and armed.  But the gun specifications for the multiple weapons Marche carried was missing from his mayor’s court charges.  So were charges for the narcotic drugs Bratenahl cops found on him. 

Marche also refused to take a breathalyzer three times and that triggered an automatic suspension of his drivers license.  When he returned to work and got behind the wheel of another East Cleveland public safety vehicle Marche was operating it without a drivers license or police authority. 

None of this mattered to Mayor Brandon King who continued to employ and help Marche and his co-conspiring chief of police, Michael Cardilli, steal from the city’s 96 percent black tax base.  Records that exist and don’t exist in the office of Ohio’s attorney general reveal that Cardilli like Marche is not authorized to perform the duties of a peace officer.

The plastic painted replica of a handgun was found in Marche’s possession and suggests it’s a “drop gun” he could use to plant on a person he may have killed as a cop impersonator.

Had Bratenahl’s police and prosecutor sought the statutorily-required charges against Marche he’d have been prosecuted by Cuyahoga County prosecuting attorney Michael O’Malley for felonies instead of the mayor’s court.  By concealing the gun charges and narcotics Bratenahl’s police and prosecutor may have committed a federal “misprision of felony” violation of Chapter 18 and Section 4 of the United States Code.

“Whoever, having knowledge of the actual commission of a felony cognizable by a court of the United States, conceals and does not as soon as possible make known the same to some judge or other person in civil or military authority under the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.”

The Bratenahl police bodycams, dashcams and booking videos of Marche shows the cover-up in real time.  The “shift supervisor” is heard telling Marche “I don’t want to do this.”
SUPERVISOR: “You’re fucking wasted.  I can’t drive around drunk and have my fucking service weapon on me.”
This HK MP7 SWAT assault weapon was in the undercover ublic safety vehicle being driven by the non-OPOTA certified drunk law enforcement impersonator. At all times during his interaction with Bratenahl police officers, Marche was impersonating a law enforcement officer when he presented himself as one.

The supervisor specifically asked Marche if he was carrying a service weapon or personal weapon.  So the weapon’s “felony” presence was known by Bratenahl police to be on the person of a drunk and armed man.  It was mentioned in the incident report.  It was completely left out of Bratenahl prosecutor Thomas Hanculak’s charges.  

The Bratenahl police supervisor is shown telling Marche “I’m on your side” despite all the felony violations of law he knows the cop impersonator has committed.
Marche’s OPOTA certification has expired and he’s carrying a weapon and performing a peace officer’s duties in violation of state law that told him to stop.  Instead of being treated like an individual impersonating a peace officer, the Bratenahl police supervisor is shown conspiring to aide him.  He makes no effort to validate Marche’s credentials and assumes he’s compliant.

Despite his conspiratorially helpful mindset the video shows Marche telling the Bratenahl supervisor,  “Don’t fucking talk to me.”

It shows Marche threatening the Bratenahl supervisor with retaliation by saying he’s gong to do his job if “you guys” show up in East Cleveland “over the bridge.”  

The recording of the interaction between East Cleveland police officer Joe Marche and the Bratenahl police supervisor shockingly reveals how police officers seek ways and conspire with prosecutors to conceal felony violations of law they’ve committed.

The video shows Marche telling the Bratenahl shift supervisor, “I shouldn’t be arrested for anything.”  The supervisor responds, “You put us in a bad position.” 

The supervisor is show in the video telling Marche that he tried to drive off and resisted.  They had to do what they had to do.  That included breaking the windows on the undercover public safety vehicle to get him out of the car.

The Bratenahl supervisor is clearly heard asking Marche about the weapons in his possession.  He’s clearly heard acknowledging that Marche was armed and drunk. 

What’s evident to this writer as a former mayor of the city that currently employs Marche is that the Bratenahl police department’s video encounter on the street should have got him fired and prosecuted but it didn’t.  

There’s the false perception as the video more than implies that cops and prosecutors have the “discretion” to enforce or not enforce criminal laws that exists as a contradiction to the plain language of the federal “misprision” statute making it a felony to know a felony has been committed and not to report it.  

A search of the Ohio Revised Code for the two words “officer discretion” show them as non-existent in any statute.  The same applies to Supreme Court rulings.  Discretion is granted only for searches based on probable cause as affirmed in Samson v. California, 2006.

“The Court has reaffirmed many times that the Fourth Amendment does not permit the individual officer in the field to exercise unconstrained discretion to search. The Court has said that the Fourth Amendment is primarily directed at the evil — it was primarily directed at the evil of general warrants and writs of assistance, and the evil of general warrants and writs of assistance was that they gave individual officers blanket authority to search where they pleased and placed the liberty of every man in the hands of every petty officer.”

For at least the second time during his career with East Cleveland Michael Cardilli, the chief of police, has continued to perform police duties and wear a weapon while under orders from the state of Ohio to stop. The photo of Cardilli was taken at the scene of a house explosion on June 10, 2018. The photo and his talk with reporters serve as physical evidence that Cardilli was wearing a badge, gun and performing police duties without valid OPOTA credentials.

The legal duties of the Bratenahl cops who the federal misprision statute has identified as knowing a felony was being committed by Marche are found in R.C. 737.11 under the heading, “General duties of police and fire departments.”

“The police force of a municipal corporation shall preserve the peace, protect persons and property, and obey and enforce all ordinances of the legislative authority of the municipal corporation, all criminal laws of the state and the United States, all court orders issued and consent agreements approved pursuant to sections 2919.26 and 3113.31 of the Revised Code, all protection orders issued pursuant to section 2903.213 or 2903.214 of the Revised Code, and protection orders issued by courts of another state, as defined in section 2919.27 of the Revised Code.”

Obey and enforce all local ordinances, and all criminal laws of the state and United States.  “All” is a very inclusive word that leaves no room for the words at the “officer’s discretion.”

While black mayors are struggling to bring “civil rights” to the police departments they supervise those two words seem not to exist in the vocabulary of the dreadlock-wearing East Cleveland mayor, Brandon King. This “sellout” is knowingly allowing law enforcement officer impersonators to continue to stop, arrest, present charges against and offer testimony in court against the residents of a 96 percent black city.

There’s no legal authority Ohio law gave Bratenahl’s police officers or prosecutor to conceal the felony presence of weapons and narcotics on an individual impersonating a peace officer behind the wheel of a public safety vehicle. 

There’s no legal reason East Cleveland’s mayor can provide as explanation for why he continues to pay and allow Marche to violate the constitutional rights of the citizens he serves while impersonating a peace officer.

Eric Jonathan Brewer

Cleveland's most influential journalist and East Cleveland's most successful mayor is an East Saint Louis, Illinois native whose father led the city's petition drive in 1969 to elect the first black mayor in 1971. Eric is an old-school investigative reporter whose 40-year body of editorial work has been demonstrably effective. No local journalist is feared or respected more.

Trained in newspaper publishing by the legendary Call & Post Publisher William Otis Walker in 1978 when it was the nation's 5th largest Black-owned publication, Eric has published and edited 13 local, regional and statewide publications across Ohio. Adding to his publishing and reporting resume is Eric's career in government. Eric served as the city's highest paid part-time Special Assistant to ex-Cleveland Mayor Michael R. White. He served as Chief of Staff to ex-East Cleveland Mayor Emmanuel Onunwor; and Chief of Communications to the late George James in his capacity as the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority's first Black executive director. Eric was appointed to serve as a member of the state's Financial Planning & Supervision Commission to guide the East Cleveland school district out of fiscal emergency and $20 million deficit. Former U.S. HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson told Eric in his D.C. office he was the only mayor in the nation simultaneously-managing a municipal block grant program. Eric wrote the city's $2.2 million Neighborhood Stabilization Program grant application. A HUD Inspector General audit of his management of the block grant program resulted in "zero" audit findings.

As a newspaper publisher, Eric has used his insider's detailed knowledge of government and his publications to lead the FBI and state prosecutors to investigations that resulted in criminal prosecutions of well-known elected officials in Ohio; and have helped realign Cleveland's political landscape with the defeat of candidates and issues he's exposed. Eric's stories led to the indictments of the late Governor George Voinovich's brother, Paul Voinovich of the V Group, and four associates. He asked the FBI to investigate the mayor he'd served as chief of staff for public corruption; and testified in three federal trials for the prosecution. He forced former Cuyahoga County Coroner Dr. Elizabeth Balraj to admit her investigations of police killings were fraudulent; and to issue notices to local police that her investigators would control police killing investigations. Eric's current work has resulted in Cuyahoga County Judge John Russo accepting the criminal complaint he guided an activist to file against 24 civil rights-violating police officers in the city he once led for operating without valid peace officer credentials. USA Today reporters picked up on Eric's police credentials reporting from his social media page and made it national.

Eric is the author of of his first book, "Fight Police License Plate Spying," which examines the FBI and local police misuse of the National Crime Information Center criminal records history database. An accomplished trumpet player and singer whose friendship with Duke Fakir of the Four Tops resulted in his singing the show's closing song, "Can't Help Myself": Curtis Sliwa of New York's Guardian Angels counts Eric among his founding chapter leaders from the early 1980's role as an Ohio organizer of over 300 volunteer crime fighters in Cleveland, Columbus and Youngstown, Ohio. For his work as a young man Eric was recognized by Cleveland's Urban League as it's 1983 Young Man of the Year.

Known in Cleveland for his encyclopedic knowledge of government and history, and intimately-connected with the region's players, every local major media outlet in Cleveland has picked up on one of Eric's stories since 1979. There is no mainstream newspaper, television or radio outlet in Cleveland that does not include an interview with Eric Jonathan Brewer in its archives over the past 40 years.