Archive for August, 2008

Oh, Come On

Sunday, August 31st, 2008

This is just ridiculous:

The Richland County (S.C.) Sheriff’s Department has acquired an armored personnel carrier complete with a turret-mounted .50-caliber belt-fed machine gun for its Special Response Team.

Sheriff Leon Lott told the Columbia State newspaper that he hoped the vehicle, named “The Peacemaker,” would let the bad guys know that his officers are serious.

“We don’t look at this as a killing machine,” Lott told the paper. “It’s going to keep the peace. We hope the fact that we have this is going to save lives. When something like this rolls up, it’s time to give up.”

Who wants to set an over under on the first time they use this thing to bust a pot dealer?

UPDATE: Pete Guither found a photo of the thing, and the weird origin of the name the sheriff gave it.

Re-usable Anarchy and A-Cafe updates

Friday, August 29th, 2008

Here’s a couple of updates on local anarchist organizing in Las Vegas.

First, follow-up on the A-Cafe. As I mentioned a few days ago:

We’re starting a Las Vegas A-Cafe. (By we, I mean both Southern Nevada ALL and some other local anarchists I’ve contacted. Look out, we’re conspiring.) The Anarchist Cafe is intended as an informal gathering for anarchists (of all stripes, sects, and creeds) to meet and talk with each other—which is free-form enough to allow people just to meet up and hang out if they want to hang out, but y also where they can talk some shop, spread some news, and float some ideas for action. The idea comes from events in Califas (SoCal, NoCal). For the time being, we’re being rather literal by holding the event in an actual coffee house, because they have good meeting space, comfy chairs, and don’t expect us to do anything more for it than buy some of their drinks. Hopefully the first meeting will bring together some new faces and old.

We did heavy flyering on Monday, a little on Tuesday, and quite a bit more on Wednesday. Due both to planning and to some accidents of who was available when, pretty much all of our flyering was concentrated on UNLV campus and the neighborhoods immediately surrounding. About half of the flyers were put up were ALL flyers on police brutality and taxation. About half were advertisements for the A-Cafe specifically. (The latter had the advantage of an eye-catching circle-A, and a specific action item — attending the meeting.)

Here’s the results.

  • The flyers got some attention: the Southern Nevada ALL website got about 350 unique visits on Monday, about 180 on Tuesday, and about 210 on Wednesday.

  • The A-Cafe went well. Based on past experience, I figured ahead of time I’d count the event as a success if we got a few of the old folks together and made at least one or two new contacts. As it turned out, we had three ALLies (including myself) and one other anarchist we’d already met with pass through the room. We made five new contacts, passed out quite a bit of ALL literature and flyers (including multiple copies to a couple people who were planning to distribute them to friends). We also got in contact with three others who could not make the first meeting but are interested in future events and local organizing. So count this as quite the success, if we can make something of it.

The Cafe itself mostly involved introductions, passing around some small sheets we are using to build a contact list and poll people about the projects they’re interested in working on. A couple of the people who attended were interested in anarchist ideas but not committed anarchists, so we talked about the basics of anarchism with them; and chatted up those who were already committed anarchists about possible local projects.

The next meeting of the Las Vegas A-Cafe will be:

Wednesday, September 3
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
at the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Running Rebel Plaza
4550 S. Maryland Parkway

As before, if you are in the Las Vegas area (or you know someone who is) and are interested in the A-Cafe or in Southern Nevada ALL, be sure to come, or to let the interested parties know about it. (You can use Vegas A-Cafe’s Tell-a-Friend form, if you like.) I should be at the A-Cafe on Wednesday, and I hope that several other ALLies will be there too. If you’re interested but can’t make it to the face-to-face, by all means drop us a line so we can put you on our contact list.

The next question then, is, now that introductions are out of the way, what future A-Cafes will involve, at least for those who have been at least one A-Cafe and met other folks already. A large component is supposed to be informal, based on chatting with each other rather than having some kind of agenda to work through. Partly because that kind of thing is boring as hell, and partly because, insofar as it serves a purpose, it only serves a purpose for groups with a much more well-defined set of projects than A-cafe, which is mainly just intended as a space for people to meet each other, network, and have a bit of pleasant and possibly useful conversation. But it will definitely help to have some kind of prompts to get people talking with each other, and potentially things for people to work on individually or in small groups, if that’s what they want to do. Any suggestions? If so, I’d definitely appreciate any proposals down in the comments section….

Second, I’ve received some requests for editable versions of the flyers that ALL has used in its two flyering events. I’ve been dragging my feet a bit, in part because distributing editable content over the web is actually somewhat more complicated than distributing print-ready content. Basically, because print-ready PDFs are designed to be portable — that’s what the P in PDF stands for — and so carefully embed all the data that you might need to reproduce their content exactly. Editable formats don’t provide the same guarantees. But, I realize that editable versions will be much more useful to those of y’ALL who are outside Vegas than a print-ready version that you’d have to use physical cut-and-paste to customize for local needs. So, here is what I’ve done. From here on out, each new action that we post to the Southern Nevada ALL website will have a Re-use section at the bottom of the page, which will include editable copies of all the files we used to produce the material for that action, as well as any auxiliary files that you need to download to make the whole thing work. All of the materials that Southern Nevada ALL has already distributed so far for Tax Day and Radical Re-orientation are now available in their original, editable OpenDocument Text format (which you should be able to edit with OpenOffice.org Writer, Google Docs, and most open-source office software). These flyers all make use of at least one custom font face not included with your operating system; the fonts are all freely available for download, though. Here’s the full set of the fonts you might need (in TrueType format):

And, once you’ve got those fonts downloaded and installed, here’s the full collection of flyers and handbills that we’ve used. I’ve also included a copy of the short form we used for the networking project — for contact information and polling about interest in local projects — in case you might find that useful, too. As usual, all of this is copylefted and made freely available for your re-use. (It would be a courtesy to add a small attribution to Southern Nevada ALL somewhere if you should re-use the flyers we made while changing the contact information. I’d also love to hear about it if you use the designs in your own agitprop. But it’s not like I’m going to sic the Anarchy Police on you either way.) Enjoy!


How Government Works (#1)

How Government Works (#2)

Taxes Pay For Torture (#1)

Taxes Pay For Torture (#2)

Taxes Pay For War (#1)

Taxes Pay For War (#2)

Your Money Or Your Life!

Your Tax Dollars At Work (#1)

Your Tax Dollars At Work (#2)

Cops are here to protect you. (#1)

Cops are here to protect you. (#2)

A-Cafe invitation

Vegas Anarchy handbills

Las Vegas Anarchist Networking Project

Onward.

Norm Stamper on Reason TV

Friday, August 29th, 2008

Stamper’s the former police chief of Seattle. He’s also an ardent drug war critic, he spoke at the Cato forum for my Overkill paper, and he’s an all-around good guy.

Cato Forum on No-Knock Raids Featuring Berwyn Heights Mayor Cheye Calvo, LEAP’s Peter Christ, and Your Humble Agitator

Friday, August 29th, 2008

Here are the details, from Cato’s website:

Should No-Knock Police Raids be Rare-or Routine?

POLICY FORUM
Thursday, September 11, 2008
4:00 PM (Reception To Follow)

Featuring Cheye Calvo, Mayor, Berwyn Heights, Maryland, Radley Balko, Senior Writer, Reason and author of Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids in America, Peter Christ, Co-founder, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition. Moderated by Tim Lynch, Director, Project on Criminal Justice, Cato Institute.

The Cato Institute
1000 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001

The Prince George’s County police department is under fire for a recent drug raid on the home of Berwyn Heights mayor Cheye Calvo. Unbeknownst to Calvo, a box containing marijuana was delivered to his home. Shortly thereafter, police officers kicked in the front door and shot both of Calvo’s pet Labrador retrievers. The police have subsequently cleared Calvo of any wrongdoing but are unapologetic about their raid tactics. Are no-knock, paramilitary raids an appropriate tactic for drug investigations? Or do sudden, unannounced entries bring unnecessary violence to police investigations? Join us for a discussion of the Prince George’s incident and, more broadly, the militarization of police work in America.

Cato events, unless otherwise noted, are free of charge. To register for this event, please fill out the form below and click submit or email events@cato.org, fax (202) 371-0841, or call (202) 789-5229 by 4:00 PM, Wednesday, September 10, 2008. Please arrive early. Seating is limited and not guaranteed. News media inquiries only (no registrations), please call (202) 789-5200.

If you can’t make it to the Cato Institute, watch this forum live online.

The Las Vegas A-Cafe and Radical Re-Orientation at UNLV

Monday, August 25th, 2008

Here’s the latest on Southern Nevada ALL and anarchist organizing in Las Vegas.

We’re starting a Las Vegas A-Cafe. (By we, I mean both Southern Nevada ALL and some other local anarchists I’ve contacted. Look out, we’re conspiring.) The Anarchist Cafe is intended as an informal gathering for anarchists (of all stripes, sects, and creeds) to meet and talk with each other—which is free-form enough to allow people just to meet up and hang out if they want to hang out, but y also where they can talk some shop, spread some news, and float some ideas for action. The idea comes from events in Califas (SoCal, NoCal). For the time being, we’re being rather literal by holding the event in an actual coffee house, because they have good meeting space, comfy chairs, and don’t expect us to do anything more for it than buy some of their drinks. Hopefully the first meeting will bring together some new faces and old. The first meeting is:

Wednesday, August 27th, 2008
6:30pm – 8:00pm
@ The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, Running Rebel Plaza
4550 S. Maryland Parkway, Las Vegas, NV 89119

Bring yourself. Bring a friend. And bring anything — ideas you’ve had, projects you’re working on, literature, zines, flyers, art, whatever — that you’d like to share with some like-minded people. For myself, I’m going to try to encourage everyone to sign on for some networking projects, bring a lot of ALL literature to set out on a table, and chat people up about possible local actions and projects.

For more details, see the Vegas A-Cafe website.

In order to announce the upcoming A-Cafe, to raise awareness about the domestic and foreign and perpetrated by the State, and to reach out to incoming and returning students at UNLV, Southern Nevada ALL took its second flyering action today — the first day of classes for the upcoming semester at UNLV. We’re calling this outreach action Radical Re-Orientation. Right now, we’re limited mainly to posting flyers and distributing handbills. In the future, if we gain more of a foothold on campus, I hope that we can really trick the event out, through some strategic use of tabling, more extensive first-week events, and hopefully coordination with other groups on campus. But, in any case, for now, there is the A-Cafe, and there are the flyers and handbills. The numerical majority of the paper that we’ve been pushing has been a pair of new flyers on police brutality, a handbill on anarchy, and a flyer announcing the A-Cafe event. In addition, we also have some fresh copies of existing flyers on how we are forced to pay for war and torture through government taxation.


Cops are here to protect you. (#1)

Cops are here to protect you. (#2)

Taxes Pay For Torture (#1)

Taxes Pay For Torture (#2)

Taxes Pay For War (#1)

Taxes Pay For War (#2)

A-Cafe invitation

Vegas Anarchy / What Is Anarchy?

The handbills are designed to be printed out as a double-sided 4x4 sheet, with the logo on one side and the What Is Anarchy? text, with a link back to the A-Cafe website, on the back. We’ve dropped a few in public places, and spread the rest around under car windshield-wipers and on doorknobs; the idea is for the front to catch your eye with the logo, and the back to give some idea of what we’re all about. I hope to re-use the design with a bunch of different texts on the back; for the first one, I tried a capsule summary of what anarchism is about. Thus:

What is Anarchy?

Anarchy means lawlesness. It does not mean riot or chaos. The government schools and the corporate media have taught you to believe that Anarchy means disorder because they need you to believe that order and peace can only exist where they are imposed by government laws and enforced by government police. The elite few who pull the strings in the government and in the corporate media need you to believe that social order requires social control. After all, they intend to do the controlling. They expect you to surrender your freedom to their authority. In exchange they promise you peace, protection, security, and order. But what they deliver is fear, war, police brutality, and humiliating “security” checkpoints. Their “order” means taking orders. Their “protection” is a prison.

In Anarchy there is another way. Instead of a coercive order imposed by government, we believe in consensual order. Instead of “protection” from brutal government cops, we look to individual and neighborhood self-defense. Instead of “relief” from indifferent government welfare bureaucracies, we look to fighting unions, worker solidarity and cooperative community-based mutual aid. Instead of “order” imposed by obedience to government laws, we look to voluntary contracts and agreements between free people negotiating as equals.

We oppose all government prohibitions, government taxes, government borders, government police, and government wars, because we are for peace, freedom, and social harmony. These can only exist between people who come to agreements as equals, not between people who are forced to obey out of fear. It is government law that produces violence, riot, and disorder. Only in Anarchy can there be true order, real peace, individual freedom and social harmony.

If you are interested in learning more about these ideas, or meeting other people in Las Vegas who are working to make them a reality, check out the Vegas Anarchist Cafe at: http://vegas.anarchistcafe.org

We put up about about 150 flyers and passed out about 200 handbills today. We’ll be spreading more anarchist love in upcoming days. I’ll let y’all know how it goes in terms of attention, new contacts, and the A-Cafe. As usual, if you find any of the pictures pretty or the text useful, they’re all freely available for you to reuse and recycle as you see fit.

If you are in the Las Vegas area (or you know someone who is) and are interested in the A-Cafe or in Southern Nevada ALL, I’ll be at the A-Cafe on Wednesday, and I hope that several other ALLies will be there too. If you can’t make it to the face-to-face, by all means drop us a line. If you want to put up flyers, feel free to contact me — I can hand you off a stack of flyers to put up and give you some idea of the areas that have already been hit — or feel free to print them up yourself from the PDF and put them wherever seems best.

Onward.

No, seriously, I could swear the water in this pot is getting a little hotter… (#5)

Friday, August 22nd, 2008

… But it must just be the summer heat, right?

In Maryland, a state police Red Squad spent a year and change infiltrating anti-death penalty and anti-war groups, and put the names of nonviolent activists onto terrorist and drug-trafficking watch lists:

The ACLU released 43 pages of [Maryland] state police summaries and computer logs Thursday - some with agents’ names and paragraphs blacked out — that it obtained from the state attorney general’s office through a lawsuit based on Maryland’s Public Information Act.

The files depict a pattern of spying and surveillance over a 14-month period in 2005 and 2006. During that time, agents infiltrated the Baltimore Pledge of Resistance, a peace group; the Baltimore Coalition Against the Death Penalty; and the Committee to Save Vernon Evans, a death row inmate.

Police entered the names of activists in a law enforcement database of people suspected of being terrorists or drug traffickers, the documents show. Police officials said they did not infringe on the protesters’ freedom; the ACLU said that nothing in the documents indicated criminal activity or intent.

Many of the spies’ reports seem innocuous. In one, an agent who attended a gathering of the Evans group noted that activists discussed the stance that a candidate for Baltimore County state’s attorney might take on the death penalty.

Yesterday, [former Maryland Governor Bob] Ehrlich said on WJZ-TV that he was sympathetic to the principle that police should not spy on groups when there is no evidence of wrongdoing.

But he added, We pay state police to make decisions, and obviously they bring discretion with them to their jobs every day, so their job on a daily basis obviously is to weigh the relative value of intelligence they’ve received and to make decisions accordingly.

Jonathan Bor and Gus G. Sentementes, Baltimore Sun (2008-07-19): State police spying decried

For example, one of the decisions that cops accordingly make is to harass, assault, restrain, and imprison innocent people who try to photograph them and document how the cops are treating the people they interact with. (Apparently this intelligence thing isn’t a two-way street.) They are, of course, happy to invent completely fictional crimes based on nonexistent laws in order to do so. Thus, in Johnson County, Tennessee:

Nearly everyone carries a cell phone and it’s hard to find one without that camera feature. It’s convenient when you want to take that impromptu photo, but a Tri-Cities area man ended up behind bars after snapping a shot of a Johnson County sheriff’s deputy during a traffic stop.

The cell phone photographer says the arrest was intimidation, but the deputy says he feared for his life.

… A Johnson County sheriff’s deputy arrested Scott Conover for unlawful photography.

He says you took a picture of me. It’s illegal to take a picture of a law enforcement officer, said Conover.

… The deputy also asked Conover to delete the picture three times.

He said if you don’t give it to me, you’re going to jail, said Conover.

Under the advice of the Johnson County attorney, the sheriff would not comment and the arresting deputy said he didn’t want to incriminate himself by talking to us.

Darius Radzius, WJHL (2008-07-11): Man Arrested For Unlawful Photography

Carlos Miller elaborates on the same case:

Gangsters in Blue Ben May and Starling McCloud

Update: I talked to Scott Conover Wednesday morning and he said they delayed his court appearance to Sept. 3rd, which sounds familiar because they kept doing the same thing in my case. (I was arrested last year for photographing cops against their wishes). In my case, I took it as a sign that they were hoping the delay would cause the media interest to die down.

After arresting Scott Conover for unlawful photography in Mountain City, Tennessee last June, Johnson County Sheriff’s Deputy Starling McCloud threatened to arrest Conover’s 12-year-old daughter with the same charge after she snapped two photos of her father getting handcuffed.

As it turns out, she is a better photographer than her father because she actually managed to photograph the camera shy deputy.

… It won’t be the first time [Scott Conover has] faced off against the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office in court.

A couple of years ago, we had problems with the sheriff, so we sued them and settled out of court for an undisclosed sum, he said.

But the problems started even before that, after he witnessed deputies beating a man in front of the restaurant/bar he owns.

They beat the shit out of him, he said. The guy’s lawyer came back and took witness statements. When the statements made it back to the sheriff’s department, they came by and asked me why I was getting involved.

Not long after that, deputies started staking out his business, Jammers Rocking Road House, which he said is modeled after the Tiki Bar in Key Largo.

They were wolf-packing my customers, he said. They would lie and wait for them to leave and then pull them over to see if they had been drinking.

Conover struck back by suing them.

… On the night of his arrest, Conover and his family had left the Last Chance Saloon after picking up the nightly earnings and were on their way back to Jammers. His wife was sitting in the passenger’s seat. His son and daughter were in the back seat.

Up ahead were a group of customers who had just left the bar. A Johnson County Sheriff’s deputy, who was parked along side of the road, pulled over the car with the customers.

The lady who was driving doesn’t drink, he said. Her husband, who does drink, was sitting in the passenger’s seat.

Conover pulled up to the scene and stopped his Hummer in front of the traffic stop. He asked his son for his IPhone, then rolled the window down and said:

Hey fellas, I’m just getting your picture.

Then he snapped the photo. Deputy McCloud — who has been on the force only 18 months — told him that photographing him was illegal.

I asked, what planet are you from?, Conover said.

McCloud started threatening to arrest him if he did not delete the photo, which as it turned out, did not even capture the deputy.

Conover’s wife even asked her husband to just hand the deputy the IPhone, but he refused. The deputy kept threatening him with arrest if he didn’t delete the photo.

The deputy then ordered Conover out of his car.

I threw the phone back to my daughter and told her to keep taking photos.

By then, two Mountain City police officers had pulled up to the scene, including Kenneth Lane and Ben May, who is in the dark uniform in the above photos. McCloud placed two sets of handcuffs on Conover, who is six-feet tall and weighs 270 pounds, and apparently looked as if he could break out of a single pair of handcuffs.

Conover’s daughter snapped two photos before McCloud threatened her with arrest.

He started trying to get in my Hummer and get to the back seat where my kids were. I told him, You better not go back there or else we’re going to have some real problems, he said.

McCloud decided against arresting the daughter.

At the jail, Conover asked McCloud if had ever heard of the First Amendment.

He then turned to me and said, I’m charging you with disorderly conduct.

Thirty minutes later, after McCloud had left the jail — and had time to think of what other charges he could come up with — he called the jailer and added another charge against Conover; pointing a laser at an officer.

Carlos Miller, Photography is Not a Crime (2008-08-05): Deputy threatened to arrest 12-year-old daughter for unlawful photography

Meanwhile, in Ohio, posturing macho paramilitary cops gunned down an unarmed woman holding nothing other than her baby boy. They fired high-powered rifles, blindly into a room they couldn’t see, because they saw a shadow on the wall during their cock-swinging commando SWAT raid. Please remember that cops are hired and trained to keep you and me safe, so obviously no matter how many unarmed women these heavily armed, trained professionals mow down in a wild attempt to save their own skins, the warrior mindset means never having to say you’re sorry.

A Lima, Ohio jury has acquitted police officer Joseph Chavalia of involuntary manslaughter in the death of 26-year-old Tarika Wilson. Chavalia shot and killed Wilson and wounded her infant son during a drug raid last January. Wilson was unarmed.

During the raid, one of Chavalia’s fellow officers shot and killed the two dogs owned by Wilson’s boyfriend and the target of the raid, Anthony Terry. Chavalia testified that he mistook his fellow officer’s shots at the dogs for hostile gunfire coming from the bedroom where Wilson was standing with her child. Chavalia then fired blindly into the bedroom.

The jury concluded that Chavalia reasonably feared for his life when he heard the gunshots. I guess they were then willing to overlook Chavalia’s mistaking an unarmed woman holding a baby for an armed drug dealer, and the fact that he fired blindly into a room without first identifying what he was shooting at. It’s too bad that that same sort of deference isn’t given to the people on the receiving end of these raids when they too understandably confuse the police officers who wake them from sleep and invade their homes for criminal intruders.

Radley Balko, Hit and Run (2008-08-05): Lima, Ohio SWAT Officer Acquitted in the Killing of Tarika Wilson

Over in Chicago, the arbitrary governor over the state of Illinois has declared that what Chicago needs is yet another elite tactical team to patrol inner city neighborhoods, complete with state troopers and military helicopters.

Calling violence in Chicago out of control, Gov. Blagojevich on Wednesday offered to lend state troopers and National Guard helicopters to the city to augment the Chicago Police.

The governor is considering forming an elite tactical team to help the Chicago Police fight gang problems, a source said, adding that the unit could later be sent across the state to deal with gang problems at any city’s request.

Chicago Sun-Times (2008-07-17): Gov. says Chicago out of control

Meanwhile, the Fighting Uruk-Hai of Arizona proposes that we ought to combat inner city crime using the strategic hamlet surge tactics that have made for such a brilliant success in the occupation of Iraq.

We might look at what Rudy Giuliani did in New York City, when he became mayor of that city. … And some of those tactics, very frankly — you mention the war in Iraq — are like that we use in the military. You go into neighborhoods, you clamp down, you provide a secure environment for the people that live there, and you make sure that the known criminals are kept under control. And you provide them with a stable environment and then they cooperate with law enforcement, etc, etc.

Do you feel safer now?

(Stories via Darian Worden (2008-07-18): Martial Law 2008, Manuel Lora @ LewRockwell.com Blog (2008-08-02): The Fascist McCain On Solving Neighborhood Crimes, Ali @ ThinkProgress (2008-08-01): McCain suggests military-style invasion modeled on the surge to control inner city crime, etc.)

See also:

Man Gets 4 Million Settlement in Police Beating, After Loss of Eye and Use of Hand

Friday, August 22nd, 2008
The Black Cross blog reports,
Freddie McCollum Jr. poses at his attorney’s office in Laurel, MD. A federal civil jury in U.S. District Court in Baltimore recently ordered Prince George’s County (MD) and three of its police officers to pay McCollum $4 million after a finding that the officers violated his civil rights in 1997 when they beat him so badly that he lost his right eye, suffered a broken leg, two cracked ribs, bites from a police dog and other injuries. In addition to the loss of an eye, McCollum has only partial use of his left hand. The incident began with a routine traffic stop. The Baltimore jury ordered the officers to pay the 53-year-old McCollum $3.6 million to compensate for his injuries, pain and lost income and an additional $400,000 in punitive damages. more.

Police Violated Taser Use Guidelines when they tasered Black man on Bridge

Wednesday, August 20th, 2008


As reported by
African American Political Pundit, publisher of the blog Tasered While Black, "It appears that some police departments have established reasonable taser guidelines, but the guidelines make no difference to officers on the beat, particularly, when it comes to black folks."

Get this folks,
The Columbia, MO. Police Department has operational guidelines that state that an officer should not use a Taser against someone the officer believes “is in a position where a fall would likely cause serious injury or death.” Well it's clear that they violated the rules when they tasered a black manwho threatened to jump off a pedestrian bridge above Interstate 70 and they Tasered him and induced the fall.

Phillip McDuffy suffered two broken arms, a skull fracture and possible broken jaw on July 25 when he fell 15 feet from the bridge onto a concrete embankment below.

Police used two Tasers in an attempt to subdue McDuffy after a 90-minute standoff that snarled traffic for miles. More HERE

Tasered while Black publisher wonders if all of the hoopla around getting tasers with videocams will make a difference if poilice are just going to violate thier own policies anyway? Check out what one police department is doing about taser videocams here


Tasered To Death in Louisiana – Finally some Accountability

Thursday, August 14th, 2008
"It is our intention to show at trial that Mr. Nugent caused the death of Baron Pikes by 'Tasing' him multiple times, unnecessarily and in violation of Louisiana law, and by failing to get him medical attention when it was apparent he needed it," Nevils said in a statement. "In a civilized society, abuse by those who are given great authority cannot be tolerated."

-
Winn Parish District Atty. Chris Nevil



Tasered While Black publisher says: "Back on July 12th we reported on how 21 year old Barron Scooter Collins, was Tased to death nine times over the course of 30 minutes. It appears that the advocacy work by the family of Baron Scooter Pikes, and the work of Radio Talk Show host Tony Brown, along with the national reporting of the Baron Scooter Pikes case by Howard Witt have caused Winn Parish District Atty. Chris Nevils to obtain an indictment of a former cop in a Taser death in Louisiana."

As reported bya ruling in a racially explosive case that some forensic experts have described as police torture, a grand jury in the small Louisiana town of Winnfield indicted a white police officer Wednesday on charges of manslaughter and official malfeasance for repeatedly shocking a handcuffed black suspect with a Taser device, resulting in the man's death due to cardiac arrest.

After two days of closed testimony, Winn Parish District Atty. Chris Nevils announced that the grand jury had indicted Scott Nugent, 21, for the death in January of Baron "Scooter" Pikes, 21, while in police custody. Two other Winnfield police officers who were present during the incident were not charged.

Nugent, who was fired from the police force in May, could face up to 45 years in prison if convicted on the charges. He surrendered to sheriff's deputies immediately after the indictment was issued, a spokesman for Nevils said, and a $45,000 bond was set."
Read more HERE



Tasered To Death in Louisiana

Thursday, August 14th, 2008
"It is our intention to show at trial that Mr. Nugent caused the death of Baron Pikes by 'Tasing' him multiple times, unnecessarily and in violation of Louisiana law, and by failing to get him medical attention when it was apparent he needed it," Nevils said in a statement. "In a civilized society, abuse by those who are given great authority cannot be tolerated."

-
Winn Parish District Atty. Chris Nevil



Tasered While Black publisher says: "Back on July 12th we reported on how 21 year old Barron Scooter Collins, was Tased to death nine times over the course of 30 minutes. It appears that the advocacy work by the family of Baron Scooter Pikes, and the work of Radio Talk Show host Tony Brown, along with the national reporting of the Baron Scooter Pikes case by Howard Witt have caused Winn Parish District Atty. Chris Nevils to obtain an indictment of a former cop in a Taser death in Louisiana."

As reported bya ruling in a racially explosive case that some forensic experts have described as police torture, a grand jury in the small Louisiana town of Winnfield indicted a white police officer Wednesday on charges of manslaughter and official malfeasance for repeatedly shocking a handcuffed black suspect with a Taser device, resulting in the man's death due to cardiac arrest.

After two days of closed testimony, Winn Parish District Atty. Chris Nevils announced that the grand jury had indicted Scott Nugent, 21, for the death in January of Baron "Scooter" Pikes, 21, while in police custody. Two other Winnfield police officers who were present during the incident were not charged.

Nugent, who was fired from the police force in May, could face up to 45 years in prison if convicted on the charges. He surrendered to sheriff's deputies immediately after the indictment was issued, a spokesman for Nevils said, and a $45,000 bond was set."
Read more HERE