Sir, you trailed me for how long? You just needed a reason to pull me over. And, like, no disrespect—I don’t have nothing against police officers—but with all the sh-t that’s going on now, that’s some scary sh-t, to have a police officer just trailing you.
—  John Felton, who was told by an Ohio cop that he was pulled over for making “direct eye contact.”
vine

Fort Lauderdale Police Officer Victor Ramirez slaps homeless man who wanted to use restroom.Talk to Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jack Seiler about it:

  • 954-828-5003
  • jack.seiler@fortlauderdale.gov

Video Shows Fort Lauderdale Cop Slapping Homeless Man Who Wanted to Use Restroom: “You’re Not Going to Pee!”

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Never Forget Them

Images from a candlelight vigil for Mike Brown in Boston, MA on August 22, 2014

New Yorker Tyeesha Mobley was at a gas station near her Bronx apartment with her two sons when she caught the older boy, aged nine, stealing $10 out of her purse. Thinking this was a good opportunity to teach him a lesson about honesty and consequences, she called the police, asking them to help her communicate the seriousness of stealing.

When the police arrived, however, Mobley’s Arrested Development-style lesson quickly escalated into a terrifying situation. Three of the four officers who arrived at the gas station apparently understood that this was a lighthearted call. 

“They started asking Tyleke what did he take,” said Mobley. “He told them. And about three officers was joking around with him, telling him, ‘You can’t be stealing, you’ll wind up going in the police car.'”

The fourth cop, however, had different ideas. He began yelling: “You black b—-es don’t know how to take care of your kids … why are you wasting our time, we aren’t here to raise your kid … why don’t you take your f—ing kid and leave?”

When she tried to follow his order, Mobley says the fourth officer arrested her, refusing to give a reason. While she and her children cried for him to stop, one of the other officers attempted to intervene, saying, “We are not supposed to act like this.”

He replied, “Black b—-es like that … this is how I treat them.”

After her arrest, Mobley was hospitalized for the bruises she’d sustained on her legs thanks to the fourth cop kicking her during the arrest. She successfully fought off child endangerment charges—a pretty interesting charge given that the “endangerment” in question seems to have been calling the police.

Mobley’s two children were placed in foster care for four months, where they reportedly received sub-par care. Now, having recovered her children—who have undoubtedly learned a very different lesson than the one she intended to teach—Mobley is suing the NYPD.

And, to paraphrase J. Walter Weatherman, that’s why you don’t call the police.

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(All images from pictures reporting about Ferguson, with the exceptions of the Taser diagram and my own screenshot)

I’ve seen many posts about how to protect yourself from tear gas, and your rights as a protester. I’ve also seen photographic evidence of the injuries sustained from protesters, prompting me to gather what information I could about these “less lethal” weapons being used.

Firstly, I’d like to clarify some language. These weapons are only “less lethal”, not “non-lethal”. Many of these weapons have killed in the past, as well as caused permanent, debilitating harm. Secondly, I’m only talking about those weapons I’ve seen used, either from pictures of police enforcement, injuries, or aftermath images(with the exception of TASERs, as I presume the law enforcement are carrying them but have not seen any obvious pictures thereof.)

Lets get started with my ‘exception’- TASERs. These are devices that fire 2 small dart like electrodes, using nitrogen as a propellant, that are connected to the device via wires. These can be fired up to a range of 35 feet. The electrical charge they release causes neuromuscular incapacitation.

That’s what it’s been designed for. In practical use, it has caused 334 deaths, according to Amnesty international, and the manufacturer admits that it can cause difficulties with breathing and can trigger cardiac arrest.

This next section is a combination of a few of the weapons available, but all fall under “chemical weapons” Tear gas/bombs, ‘pepperballs’ and paintball guns, due to what they can be loaded with.

The most common tear gas compound is known as CS, which reacts with the skin and mucus membranes, cause intense pain and burning sensations. This compound is used in tear gas, ‘pepperballs’ and can be used in police-grade paintballs. This, used as a weapon, has been banned from warfare since 1993, and studies have shown that is able to cause pulmonary damage, and damage to the heart and liver. In an enclosed space, if not wearing a gas mask, it can be fatal.

‘Pepperballs’ are balls of solid payloads of a powder-based irritant, such as capsaicin. These projectiles have killed in the past, in particular one woman who was part of a rowdy crowd in Boston, who was hit in the head, leading to these projectiles being banned for that PD.

Paintball guns are generally something we see used on weekends by young people, in a controlled environment, with protective gear, and even then there are injuries. Police in Ferguson have been seen carrying these devices, and after some research, I found what they can be loaded with(besides the fact that impact of an inert ball can hurt badly, or even cause eye injuries). The two examples I found show that they can loaded with capsaicin and PAVA, a stronger and synthetic capasaicinoid. When put in contact with the eyes, mucous membranes, or open wounds caused by other weapons, it is extraordinarily painful, and if breathed in can make breathing difficult and possibly painful.

Smoke grenades pose another threat, as there are types that explode to create an instant cloud, rather than disperse a stream of smoke. They are commonly filled with white phosphorous, with a charge to create the explosion and spread the smoke. Their filler is described as toxic and hazardous, requiring the use of a launcher. Particles of this substance can cause deep burns, while breathing in the smoke can irritate the lungs, eyes, and nose.

Acoustic Riot Control devices can harm, or even permanently rupture, eardrums, while the frequencies given off can cause nausea and dizziness.

Stun grenades can and have in the past, set the surrounding area on fire, can cause 3rd degree burns, and various injuries due to their explosive nature.(Lending strong credibility to the theory that it was not protesters who started the fires around Ferguson)

‘Rubber’ bullets, wooden ‘pellets’ and beanbag rounds are our last stop ladies and gentlemen. For clarity ‘rubber’ bullets are often metal rounds or spheres with a coat of rubber around them, while wooden ‘pellets’ are around the size of a hockey puck. Beanbag rounds are just what they sound like, and all three types have shown significant injuries in the past. Uses in the past have resulted in deaths, from both beanbag rounds and rubber bullets, mostly from internal bleeding and various fractures.

Stop calling this “non-lethal” retaliation, and call it out for what it really is: frilled up violence against American citizens, and the possibility of more deaths to come.

youtube

Michael Brown – Horrific Racist Song At Charity Event … ‘And He’s Dead, Dead Michael Brown’

The Glendale, CA Elks Lodge is investigating a shocking incident that went down in the club a week ago Monday, when a performer sang a song celebrating the death of Michael Brown.

TMZ has obtained a video of a song performed at a charity event held at the Elks Lodge in Glendale, California which refers to Michael Brown as a “roadkill dog.” The event was hosted by retired LAPD officer Joe Myers as part of a charity golf tournament. About half of the 50-60 guests were also officers

http://www.salon.com/2014/12/23/deader_than_a_roadkill_dog_disgusting_racist_song_about_michael_brown_performed_at_lapd_officers_charity_event/ 

NYPD officer pictured ‘putting seven-months pregnant woman into a chokehold for illegally grilling outside her apartment’

An advocacy group has released images which claim to show an NYPD officer putting a seven-months pregnant woman into a chokehold for illegally grilling on the sidewalk in front of her apartment. 

NYPD officers have been banned from using the chokehold since 1993, but an officer can be seen in the pictures wrapping his arm around 27-year-old Rosan Miller’s neck in the Saturday incident. 

Her young daughter is also in the pictures, watching the arrest unfold.

Illegally grilling on the sidewalk! What a hardened, dangerous criminal! And I bet that little girl now has a very solid grasp on who she can trust and what’s ok to do to women and/or people who are physically weaker than you!

We’ve been coming up on six years of existence and we don’t have a use of force on our unit. Which means we never tased anybody. We’ve never shot anybody. We’ve never hit anybody with [a baton]. But patients, talking to them, we get the result we want in the end. And we don’t have to force it on them.
— 

A San Antonio police officer who has been trained to recognize mental illness and respond to it in a nonviolent manner. The training has saved taxpayers $50 million over five years and dramatically reduced the number of violent interactions between police and citizens.

This needs to be implemented EVERYWHERE. 

I’m seeing a lot of Australians say stuff like, “thank god I’m in Australia!” when they talk about the shooting of Michael Brown… As if police brutality and complete misconduct is not rampant here? 

Australia is not a peaceful country where police abide by the law. Around 26% of the nation’s total prison/jail populations are Indigenous (some recent reports are saying that figure has risen to 30% in 2014). The same figure for the Northern Territory is 86%, and 40% for Western Australia. Us Blackfellas are 14.8 times more likely to be arrested than non-Indigenous persons. Ever heard of the Redfern riots? Ever heard of Black Deaths In Custody? They will arrest us and lock us up for trivial offences like swearing, but no way would the same treatment be given to a white person who swears at the police. It’s selective and absolutely racially motivated. Indigenous youth are a major target for the police, also. 

What the community of Ferguson needs right now is solidarity, support and justice. You are not helping by talking about how bad the U.S. treats Black folks but seemingly praising Australia. The police harass, assault and kill us for being Black. Don’t turn a blind eye to that. 

I do not want to see anymore posts that praise Australia for its apparent lack of police brutality. Please.

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12 NYPD Officers Enter Wrong Apartment, Violently Arrest Naked Grandma & Pepper Spray Her 4-Year-Old Grandson

August 3rd, 2014

A Brooklyn grandmother who had just taken a shower was dragged from her apartment by about 12 cops, mostly male. The 48 year old grandmother, who suffers from severe asthma, fainted and fell to the floor after the scuffle.

Denise Stewart was in her Brownsville apartment on July 13 when police pounded on her door at 11:45 p.m. and demanded entry.

Stewart, 48, cracked the door wearing only a towel wrapped around her body and underpants — and was yanked into the hallway by cops over the screams of her family and neighbors.

Stewart’s lawyer, Amy Rameau, said she was told by a Legal Aid attorney also assigned to the case that the 911 call came from a different apartment on an upper floor — and cops went to Stewart’s door by mistake.

The video shows a chaotic scene as a dozen or so male officers burst into Stewart’s apartment, while several others struggle to subdue and cuff the nearly naked woman in the hallway outside.

Stewart’s towel got lost in the scuffle, leaving the grandmother dressed only in underpants.

While trying to arrest the entire family for petty offenses, Diamond Stewart’s 4-year-old son was also pepper sprayed by police, the family said.

Stewart’s 12-year-old daughter was forcefully removed by police after the NYPD alleged she had visible injuries. The city’s Administration for Children’s Services was called to investigate but didn’t find any evidence of neglect, said Rameau.

Denise Stewart was charged with assaulting a police officer, and — along with her oldest daughter, Diamond Stewart, 20, — resisting arrest, acting in a manner injurious to a child and criminal possession of a weapon.

Stewart’s son Kirkland Stewart, 24, was charged with resisting arrest. The 12-year-old daughter was charged with assaulting a police officer, criminal mischief and criminal possession of a weapon.

After being forcefully removed from her home and placed in a police car she kicked a window of the van, allegedly injuring an officer’s chin.

New Report Finds American Taxpayers Have Paid More Than $1B in Five Years for Police Misconduct Cases

Bad policing has cost American taxpayers more than $1 billion, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal. WSJ reporters Zusha Elinson and Dan Frosch conducted an in-depth study of public records and found the cost of settling police misconduct cases has almost doubled over a five-year period.

“The 10 cities with the largest police departments paid out $248.7 million last year in settlements and court judgments in police-misconduct cases, up 48 percent from $168.3 million in 2010, according to data gathered by The Wall Street Journal through public-records requests,” reported the WSJ. “Those cities collectively paid out $1.02 billion over those five years in such cases, which include alleged beatings, shootings and wrongful imprisonment.”

Ultimately, taxpayers end up footing the bill for these settlements. Cities either pay the legal costs by self insuring, with the money coming from city funds, or the cases are handled by insurance companies. But just like car insurance, the more claims filed, the higher the premium. However, officers rarely end up paying out of their pockets for bad behavior. Notorious Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio has managed to fend off several decades of lawsuits, because the county picks up the tab. The Arizona Republic reported lawsuits against the Maricopa sheriff’s department have cost the county $44 million. And that’s one of the reasons why Arpaio stays in office. The minute he retires, he becomes responsible for the legal costs, according to a Salon article.

Of all the the cities tracked by the WSJ, New York had the costliest police department, racking up $601.3 million in legal costs over five years. Payments for settlements and judgments jumped from $93.8 in fiscal year 2013 to $165 million in 2014, reported the WSJ. The city recently paid the family of Eric Garner, who was choked to death during an altercation with Staten Island police, a $5.9 million settlement.

Sometimes incidents of police abuse are so blatant municipalities want to settle the cases quickly to stop bad publicity. The County of San Bernardino took two weeks to pay Francis Pusok $650,000 after a news helicopter captured sheriff’s deputies kicking and punching him. Pusok didn’t even have time to file a lawsuit before he received a cash settlement.

No Video Of A Police Shooting? That’s Because Many Cops Still Don’t Have Body Cameras.

And those that have cameras don’t always turn them on.

The Huffington Post analyzed police departments in 27 large U.S. cities and found that only two – Albuquerque and New Orleans – have finished equipping their officers with body cameras. Most are waiting for funding, comparing different devices or testing the use of cameras with a small portion of their officers.

Get the full story here.

Filing a complaint against an officer

So you’ve just walked out of your favorite convenience store holding a bag of goods and a law enforcement official stops you for ‘suspicious activity’ – you know you’ve done nothing illegal, but the officer insists that the stop is routine and that “if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear.

Knowing you’ve committed no crime, but unaware of your rights, you submit to a physical pat down. After a short time, the officer permits you to move along and you finish going about your day without incident. You’re one of the fortunate ones. If you were living in Chicago or New York, what happened to you could have happened to anybody, especially if they were a young black male. And then you may not have been so lucky.

Suppose you instead mouthed off to the officer or attempted to resist being frisked–what then? What happens when an officer roughs you up and decides to let you live to tell the tale? You tell the tale. Before blasting the cop on social media, now is your only chance to act ‘within the system’ to seek recourse. You have several weeks to file a report, but the likelihood of the incident being investigated plummets the longer you wait. Besides police reports, you could also file a criminal complaint against the officer, and you could even bring a civil suit against him (in theory). Criminal complaints, however, are less likely to achieve the desired result. In fact, only 33% of officers are ever convicted, and only 12% are incarcerated. Compare that to rates among the general population of 68% and 48%, respectively.

Although a person can use any one or a combination of these avenues, the procedures will vary by state. Be aware: some departments will not conduct an investigation while there is a pending criminal complaint against the officer.

The First Step

Write everything down. As soon as you get home or to a safe location, write down exactly what you remember. The officer’s name (hopefully you got it), badge number, the date/time of the incident, and the nature of the misconduct against you. What follows is a list of examples of misconduct; it is by no means exhaustive and the names for some acts vary by state:

  • Aiding another officer to violate a rule
  • Altering information on official documents
  • Appropriating property
  • Filing a false report (against you)
  • Destruction of reports or records
  • Drinking on duty
  • False arrest
  • Harassment
  • Malicious threats or assault
  • Narcotics
  • Racial or ethnic discrimination
  • Rough and careless handling of departmental equipment
  • Sexual harassment, assault
  • Soliciting or accepting a bribe

You want to address the who, what, when, where, and how of the incident to the best of your recollection. DO NOT MAKE UP FACTS. A lie in a report could get the report tossed out, could tarnish your reputability in any future reports, and could even land charges against you for filing a false report. If you cannot recall something, do not make it up.

Your actual, physical first step should carry you straight through the front door of the offending officer’s department. If you fear reprisal from the officer or the department, bring a friend. It never hurts to have a corroborating witness. You’ll need an official report form in order to mail it in. Some precincts may have websites which allow you to ‘contact’ them, but unless you can print the form out, you’re better off picking up a hard copy. These public officials are already swamped in paperwork and are far less likely to take online complaints seriously. 

You want to file this report promptly and professionally; what you file will go on the officer’s record as an incident report. It is important to remember that although you may feel outraged, your report must be free of emotion or emotive expression. While you certainly want to convey your outrage over the officer’s disregard for your civil liberties, you want to avoid emotionally-charged language as it only damages your report’s legitimacy in the eyes of the department. Carefully and concisely lay out what happened, as it happened, and what restitution you seek (suspension, termination, etc).

Some things to note:

  • If you managed to record video, audio, or capture photos, be sure to include a copy of this material along with your report.
  • One way to be sure a department doesn’t “misplace” your report is to have the mail-in copy certified at a notary. In doing this, you create an officially recognize paper trail of the report’s existence within the post system and you place the burden on the department to respond.
  • If you were with someone, use them as a witness. As long as their story corroborates with yours, it can only bolster your claim.
  • If you know an officer has a pattern of abuse, say as much in your report. You can request a copy of an officer’s ‘internal log’ if you want a record of complaints filed against them in the past.
  • You may not be the first person to file a complaint against an officer. More complaints = more scrutiny.
  • Send a Carbon Copy of the complaint to your mayor or State/Federal representatives. They’ll likely ignore it, but there’s always a chance you’ll spark a fire.
  • Consider sending one to the local papers, too.

What Happens Next?

An “intake officer” will conduct a review of your complaint to determine whether the allegations, if true, would constitute severe (as opposed to minor) misconduct. Still, your complaint might be dismissed for several other reasons besides the misconduct being categorized as minor.  For example, a determination that your allegations are intentionally and materially false will lead to your complaint being dismissed (and possibly result in charges against you). Complaints deemed trivial or frivolous will also be dismissed.

You want to remember that although the department is tasked with upholding the law, their primary concern is maintaining the credibility, integrity, and legitimacy of the department. Unless your complaint alleges a gross violation of your person (i.e., you were sexually assaulted, paralyzed), a department will mostly likely act in self-interest. In fact, unless the misconduct was severe in nature, their likely response to “informally investigate” the matter will also be a dead-end. Formal investigations carry the most weight and are thus what you should aim to achieve.

After some time and deliberation, you’ll receive a response from the department which will contain something similar to the following:

  • SUSTAINED – The investigation disclosed sufficient evidence to clearly prove some or all of the allegations made in the complaint and disciplinary action could result against the officer.(s)
  • NOT SUSTAINED –  The investigation failed to discover sufficient evidence to clearly prove or disprove the allegation(s) made.
  • EXONERATED –  The investigation reveals that the acts did occur, but the actions taken were justified, lawful and proper.
  • UNFOUNDED –  The investigation indicated that the alleged act(s) did not occur.

You may be contacted by the department to come in for an interview, but unless you’ve forgotten to provide the evidence they seek or a substantive detail in the report, explain that the complaint contains all relevant information. There should be no need for you to make any further appearances if your report is thorough enough.

Playing the Game

Never feel discouraged. Even if an internal complaint is not sustained, it usually stays on the officer’s internal record. In theory, an officer with a large number of complaints should come under closer scrutiny, though we see that even this check against power can fail. Still, a complaint puts the department on notice of an officer’s misbehavior. The more complains a department racks up, the more likely it is that they’ll come under too much scrutiny to avoid.

Granted, all of this procedure falls entirely on the discretion of the very department for which the offending officer works. It would be impossible for you to know whether your complaint is being investigated seriously or without bias. Nationwide, only about a third of complaints filed against officers ever see any success. Still, as more Americans file complaints, a larger pool of LEOs will come under scrutiny along with their departments.

Know your rights.

rare.us
The Sandra Bland dashcam footage has been released—and someone has tampered with it
The answer to the question, "What happened to Sandra Bland?" is looking more and more suspicious.

Officer Brian Encina (while writing ticket): You seem very irritated.

Sandra Bland: I am, I really am…..(something slightly unintelligible, about how she was just “getting out of your way”)

Encina: Are you done?

Bland: You asked me what was wrong and I told you….

Encina: Mind putting out your cigarette please?

Bland: I’m in my car, why do I have to put out my cigarette?

Encina: You can step on out now.

Bland: I don’t have to step out of my car.

Encina: Step out of the car….

Bland: You do not have the right….

Encina: Now step out or I will remove you…I’m giving you a lawful order get out of the car now or I’m gonna remove you…

Bland: I’m calling my lawyer.

Encina: I’m gonna yank you out of here….

Bland: Don’t touch me, I’m not under arrest.

Encina: You are under arrest.

Bland: I’m under arrest for what ? For what?…

Encina: Get out of the car now!

Bland: Why am I being apprehended?

Encina: I’m gonna drag you out of there….I will light you up!

Bland: Wow…failure to signal, doing all this for failure to signal?

Encina: Get off the phone, put your phone down…right now…..

Bland: For a f*cking failure to signal my goodness y’all are very interesting….feeling good about yourself don’t you?….Why am I being arrested, why won’t you tell me that part?…..

Encina: You are not compliant.

Bland: Not compliant cause you just pulled me out of my car….

Encina: If you would have just listened…stop moving!

Bland: I can’t wait til we go to court…ooh I can’t wait….You gonna throw me to the floor? Feel better about yourself?….

Encina: Now you’re going to jail!…

Bland: You about to break my wrist….about to fucking break my wrists…..

Encina: You started creating the problems!…You are yanking around, when you pull away from me you’re resisting arrest…..

Bland: For a traffic ticket…for a traffic ticket!….Gonna slam me, knock my head into the ground. I got epilepsy motherf*cker…

Encina: Good, good.

A new female cop on scene: You should have thought about that before you start resisting.