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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Police Misconduct NewsWatch for 11-12-08

Yet More Police Misconduct In The News
In Local News:

Ron Sims Just Says No To Civil Rights Again

The latest contract negotiated and agreed upon between the King County Deputy Sheriff's union and the infamous King County Executive Ron (I hate civil rights) Sims is getting the cold shoulder from the county council who say they may nix the deal because the contract doesn't contain the civilian oversight components they feel are needed.

A scathing expose of misconduct and abuses in local papers spurred the passage of oversight legislation that depends on the contract to be enacted and Sims has refused to allow the Sheriff herself to negotiate with the union to try and get those changes enacted...

It seems that Ron Sims isn't happy just making sure that his jail violates civil rights, but that his police have to be able to do it too.

Border Patrol Says It's Controversial Internal Non-Border Border Checkpoints Are Gee-Golly Great
So-called "interior border checkpoints" being set up across Washington state, miles away from the border with Canada by the US border patrol have been causing their share of outrage as people claim they violate their right to movement within the state and cause fear in immigrant communities.

The Border Patrol claim they are successful and efficient, though I wonder at their definition of the terms since, out of 24,524 cars and 41,912 passengers searched at these interior checkpoints, only 81 suspected undocumented immigrants have been detained and a scant 19 suspected criminals have been turned over to local police.

This gives the checkpoints a success rate of 0.2% in exchange for stopping legal citizens within our borders without just cause by a rate of 99.8% my calculations. Sounds like an very inefficient exchange to me.. our rights for a 0.2% success rate.

In National News:

Iraq War Veteran Victim Of Debate Day Police Brutality And Others Still Fighting Charges
At the final presidential debate Oct. 15 at Hofstra University, 15 members of Iraq Veterans Against the War peacefully marched to the university to ask to be admitted to the debate so they could ask two questions.

IVAW peacefully marched to the police lines, where Nassau County police used horses to push demonstrators onto a sidewalk before brutalizing them and arresting several, including Nick Morgan, a veteran of Iraq whose face was crushed by a police horse and now has steel plates in his skull.

In total, 10 veterans and five of their supporters were arrested and endured an evening of relentless harassment by Nassau County police, including reports of threats of rape and further brutality... (the rest is at the Daily Gazette in Schenectady NY).

Meanwhile... Again in Schenectady NY...
Three cops are trying to stop a brutality case against them on technicalities. They stand accused of beating and kicking a man in a McDonald's parking lot and then again a few blocks away... and now they are asking the court to drop the case with the claim that they are not required by law to fill out a use of force form for the beating they inflicted on their victim... since that's only departmental policy, not state law.

Victim Of Well-Documented Brutality Case Murdered By Unidentified Assailants
Duanna Johnson, the transgendered brutality victim of the videotaped beating in Memphis Tenn was found shot to death on November 9. Witnesses say that several men had surrounded Duanna before a gunshot went off, at which point the unidentified men left. No arrests have been made and lawyers for Duanna insist that the civil suit spurred by her beating will still move forward.
Update: still no news of the investigation, but The Stranger has an update along with information about a fundraiser being held to help with Duanna's funeral expenses. Truly a sad story.

Read On... If you Can Stomach It...
On New Year's Day, Michael Higgins lay on a Kensington Pennsylvania sidewalk, blood pouring down his face, after one Philadelphia cop had punched him in the head and another had clubbed him from behind with a nightstick and stomped him with his steel-tipped boot, according to Higgins.

When the cops yanked him up off the ground, Higgins said that he felt a "pop" and pressed his palms against his cheeks to touch what felt like a warm glob of sticky gelatin... It was his left eyeball, dangling from its socket, he said... (read the rest at the Philadelphia Daily News, it seems like sick sadistic cops are everywhere these days.)

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