Tracey Pollock, a credentialed photographer for The UpTake, is attacked by police in Chicago during an anti-NATO protest on Saturday. Before the attack, police were using their bicycles as weapons to force back the crowd which was staging a march without a permit.
Police had formed a barricade; as you can see from the video, there was some sort of incident along the barricade. Pollock tried to get closer to see what was happening when a police officer reached up, grabbed her lens and tried to rip her camera away. The officer then pushed her over some bicycles.
Pollock was wearing a large press badge and as you can hear from the audio, even bystanders could tell she was part of the press. Protesters behind the bicycles pulled her to safety.
Pollock was bruised in the incident but not seriously injured. She says she never crossed the police barricade.
Archive | Police State
I used to laugh at people who spelled our country as “Amerika.” Here’s video of cops stopping a car full of video journalists in Chicago last night:
And in related news: At the time of this blog post, there are reports that the City of Chicago website has been DDOS’d. Over the weekend, there were reports of other such DDOSes.
Follow the Chicago protests today as they unfold, with the livestreamers the Chicago police and Homeland Security are following: Tim Pool’s web video stream, Luke Rudkowski’s web video stream. On Twitter: Geoffrey Giraffe (@jiraffa), Tim Pool (@timcast), Luke Rudkowski (@lukewearechange).
I hope the Supreme Court declines this case, because if they do accept it, I expect it means they want to rubberstamp police insanity of this sort. (After all, this dangerous woman might have been a terrorist.) Many cops, I suspect, are terrified of car stops. You never do know what the person behind the wheel may do; it’s a dangerous moment. But once cops feel they have the upper hand, it becomes a matter of power and being cops, they always have to win.
Tasers were introduced as a non-lethal form of police protection. Now they’re used to intimidate and subjugate people for things like “talking back” and other harmless forms of non-compliance.
Only citizens can stop this kind of thing, because the elected officials who control our police departments will only respond to our united voice. As a citizen, you have a right to know: What are the policies and accepted procedures for the use of Tasers? How often are officers trained – and re-trained? How frequently are the guns tested and calibrated? How much have related lawsuits cost your municipality? How many claims were settled by the town’s insurance carrier? (These should all be public record.)
Over 500 people have died in Taser-related deaths. Only our silence allows it to go on:
WASHINGTON — There have been many hundreds of varied rulings in the lower courts on when the use of Taser stun guns by the police amounts to excessive force, and sooner or later the Supreme Court will have to bring order to this area of the law. Next week, the justices are scheduled to decide whether to hear an appeal from three Seattle police officers who say they are worried about the future of what they call “a useful pain technique.”
The case involves Malaika Brooks, who was seven months pregnant and driving her 11-year-old son to school in Seattle when she was pulled over for speeding. The police say she was going 32 miles per hour in a school zone; the speed limit was 20.
Ms. Brooks said she would accept a ticket but drew the line at signing it, which state law required at the time. Ms. Brooks thought, wrongly, that signing was an acknowledgment of guilt.
Refusing to sign was a crime, and the two officers on the scene summoned a sergeant, who instructed them to arrest Ms. Brooks. She would not get out of her car.
The situation plainly called for bold action, and Officer Juan M. Ornelas met the challenge by brandishing a Taser and asking Ms. Brooks if she knew what it was.
She did not, but she told Officer Ornelas what she did know. “I have to go to the bathroom,” she said. “I am pregnant. I’m less than 60 days from having my baby.”
The three men assessed the situation and conferred. “Well, don’t do it in her stomach,” one said. “Do it in her thigh.”
Officer Ornelas twisted Ms. Brooks’s arm behind her back. A colleague, Officer Donald M. Jones, applied the Taser to Ms. Brooks’s left thigh, causing her to cry out and honk the car’s horn. A half-minute later, Officer Jones applied the Taser again, now to Ms. Brooks’s left arm. He waited six seconds before pressing it into her neck.
The world’s most ridiculously named law enforcement organization — the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms — is only one of many federal agencies participating in the crackdown on medical marijuana centers, something that many Barack Obama supporters couldn’t have imagined happening when they elected him. More here.
This war on drugs has been out of control for a long, long time. Part of the problem is that cops assume if they picked you up, you must be guilty of something, and frequently decide to mete out their own version of “justice” – either directly, by beating the crap out of a suspect, or indirectly, by “forgetting” them. If this story doesn’t convince you something is very wrong in our country, nothing will. Via Raw Story:
Daniel Chong, a 24-year old student at UC San Diego, was taken into custody during a drug raid and abandoned in a holding cell for five days without food or water, according to NBC San Diego.
“They never came back, ignored all my cries and I still don’t know what happened,” he said. “I’m not sure how they could forget me.”
On April 21, Drug Enforcement Agents raided an apartment where Chong and his friends were smoking marijuana. Nine people were arrested and the agents reportedly seized ecstasy pills, marijuana, prescription medication, psychedelic mushrooms and weapons, according to CBS 8 News. Seven of those arrested were taken to jail and one was released.
Chong, however, was left handcuffed in a 5 ft. by 10 ft. holding cell.
Chong said he screamed and kicked the door, but to no avail. Eventually, he began hallucinating and drank his own urine in hopes of staying hydrated. After days without any human contact, he tried to kill himself by breaking his glasses with his teeth, and using the glass to cut himself.
Surprisingly, Chong allegedly found a bag of methamphetamine in the holding cell, which he used to stay awake.
After five days, a DEA worker heard noises coming from the holding cell and discovered him. Chong was taken to the hospital, where he spent three days in the intensive care unit.
This may not be the first case in the country, but it’s the first time that I know of that a police officer is being disciplined for misusing a Taser. This is a small, gritty town on the Philadelphia border that’s seen quite a few ups and downs over the past several decades, and in the past, has had a lot of problems with their police force. (I know; I used to cover it when I was a reporter):
The acting head of the Colwyn Borough Police Department was suspended today while borough and county officials investigate an incident involving a juvenile who was Tasered while handcuffed in a holding cell at the department.
Deputy Chief Wendell Reed is the second person to be suspended for the April 24 incident, said Mayor Daniel Rutland. The officer who allegedly administered the shock, Cpl. Trevor Parham, was suspended earlier this week and a third officer who was allegedly present when it occurred is expected to be suspended as well, according to sources and Rutland.
State police were called to the scene today for back up as Rutland delivered the news to Reed, but Reed left on his own accord.
Detectives with Delaware County’s Criminal Investigation Division, who act as Internal Affairs investigators for the county’s police departments, were also on scene and removed computers and a Taser from the department.
Rutland said no documentation of the incident was made and the proper procedures were not followed. He said he only found out about it after receiving calls from concerned citizens. He said the only person from the department to notify him was Lt. Wesley Seitz, who will now act as head of the department.
Rutland said “there was word” that Reed had been planning to suspend Seitz today for investigating the incident and reporting it.