Archive for September, 2012

Wayne County, NY Cops Home Invasion-Style Break In and Execution of a 75 Year Old Grandmother’s Dog May have Been Retaliation

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

By Davy V.

Alot has happened after I was the first, and only, to break the story of Phyliis Loquasto, the 75 year old grandmother who was held at gunpoint on her bathroom floor by Wayne County, N.Y. cops in masks as they shot her loving dog Duke minutes after breaking down her front door.

While Duke died a slow cruel death, bleeding out, and leaving a trail of blood through the hallways, stairs and bedrooms, Loquasto, who has had three strokes and a knee replacement, was so scared that she urinated and defecated on herself after what she thought were masked terrorists breaking into her home.

Macedon, NY Police Chief John P. Colella, who is the commander of the WayneNET drug task force, claims that his team was executing a search warrant at the Loquasto residence, and said his team found marjuana plants at the location.

Phyllis Loquasto’s son and grandson lived with her at the home but were not at the house when the police broke the front door and stormed in while Loquasto was on her computer.

Despite the police claiming to have found marijuana, no arrests were made.

In the time since my story took off on the internet, not only on my blog, but also here on Copblock.org, being read throughout the U.S. as well as overseas, with readers from as far away as Japan and the U.K. reading about the WayneNET task force terrorizing an innocent elderly woman, two things can be said… Not only has the story hit a nerve with Macedon Police Chief John Colella, who said to me on the phone “I don’t care if she’s 2 or 75 years old,” when I asked him about a 75 year old woman being held down on a bathroom floor at gunpoint by his officers, but it has also hit a nerve with the hundreds of thousands of people throughout the world who have read about this disgusting use of excessive force, abuse and injustice committed against a senior citizen.

And now, even more disturbing details are coming out indicating that Macedon, NY Police Chief John P. Colella may have sent his WayneNET task force to break down the 75 year old Loquasto’s front door, terrorize her and execute her dog as retaliation over the Loquastos complaints over the Macedon Police department’s investigation, or lack thereof, of the death of Phyllis Loquasto’s grandaughter, Chelsea Lynn Bulman.

On Tuesday June 5, 2012, Chris Bulman found his wife, twenty year old Chelsea Lynn on the bathroom floor of their Evergreen Hills apartment in the town of Macedon, NY with a dog leash around her neck.

Bulman, who is enlisted with the U.S. Army called 911 and despite his army combat training, never attempted to give his young wife CPR.

When paramedics arrived, they found Chelsea Lynn sitting upright, with her head resting against the bathroom sink vanity.

According to the paramedics, Chris Bulman had told them that when he found his wife, she was laying flat on the bathroom floor with her head about a foot off the ground, and the dog leash around her neck, indicating that Chris Bulman had moved his wife’s body, as to position her in a completely different manner.

Despite a suspicious death, Macedon, NY Police never treated the apartment as a potential crime scene and never closed it off or performed any crime scene technician work.

Instead, under the supervision of Chief Colella, Macedon Police treated Chelsea Lynn’s death as a suicide.

That doesn’t sit too well with Terri Loquasto, Chelsea’s mom.

I sat down with her for an interview, where she had some interesting things to say. “I picked Chelsea and Chris up from the Rochester airport on Friday June 1, 2012 after they had spent the month of May in Germany,” Terri Loquasto said.

Terri Loquasto said that Chris Bulman’s tour in Germany had ended and that her daughter and Chris would be moving to Georgia, where he would be stationed.

Loquasto gave her daughter Chelsea and Chris her apartment to stay in until they left to Georgia.

Terri Loquasto said that her daughter texted her the next morning, Saturday, happy that Chris Bulman was taking her to get a puppy.

As she sat with me, Terri Loquasto smiled as she remembered that text from her daughter, before pausing and saying “Now that I think about that, I thought it was strange, I mean why would he (Chris Bulman) take her to get a puppy if they were going to be moving to Georgia and had just returned from Germany, why would you just run out and get a dog?”

Terri Loquasto said that after Chelsea got the puppy, she was so happy and sent texts to several friends making “play dates” for the puppy to play with her friends’ dogs.

According to Terri Loquasto, there were no signs of anything being wrong or of Chelsea Lynn being sad.

She then described for me the call she received around 4 pm on Tuesday June 5th, just four days after her daughter had arrived from Germany.

Terri Loquasto said her oldest daughter called her to tell her that one of Terri’s neighbors had seen an ambulance take Chelsea Lynn away.

Terri Loquasto raced to Strong Memorial hospital, in Rochester, NY where she learned that her daughter Chelsea Lynn had been pronounced dead.

At the hospital, a medical investigator who was called in, said that it looked like a “suspicious suicide.”

Later that evening, when Terri Loquasto went to her apartment, she could not believe her eyes.

“My apartment was in shambles, the curtains and blinds were ripped, the whole place was a disaster, like a struggle had happened in every room, except the bathroom”, she said.

But perhaps more disturbing than seeing her apartment in disarray, was what Terri Loquasto found on the floor under the bedroom window — broken fingernails on the rug.

Terri Loquasto remembers seeing her daughter’s fingernails broken, when she saw her body at the hospital.

At Chelsea’s wake, Terri Loquasto said that Chris Bulman showed up dressed in army fatigues and boots. “He couldn’t even wear anything appropriate, it was like he was going to war,” Loquasto said.

The last time that Terri Loquasto saw Chris Bulman was on a Monday, the day after her daughter’s wake.

Chris Bulman showed up at Terri’s apartment with his uncle and mother, asking if Chris could enter the apartment.

When Terri Loquasto said no, she says Chris Bulman’s uncle looked at her and said “If I had a psycho bitch wife like you, I would kill her too.”

Loquasto called 911 but when Macedon Police officer David Demchuck arrived, the three had already left.

At the time, Terri Loquasto had no idea that David Demchuck would be the lead investigator into her daughter’s suspicious death.

Or would he?

“For two months I talked to Macedon Police officer David Demchuck thinking he was the lead investigator because he told me that he was”, Terri Loquasto told me.

However, according to Loquasto, Macedon N.Y. Police Chief John Colella told her “Officer Demchuck was never an investigator in this case, he’s only a patrol officer.”

Colella went on to tell Loquasto that he (Colella) has been the investigator in the case from the start.

Confusion over who exactly was handling her daughter’s suspicious death, along with what Terri Loquasto feels was Chief Colella’s and the Macedon Police department’s overall incompetent investigation, such as never securing the scene at the apartment, led Terri Loquasto and other family members to complain by writing letters not only to Chief Colella, but also to the New York State police, Wayne County, NY District Attorney Richard Healey, and even New York Governor Andrew Cuomo demanding that her daughter’s death be investigated.

And about Macedon Police officer David Demchuck, when I met with Terri Loquasto, her mother, Plyllis Loquasto was also there.

Phyllis Loquasto said something I found very interesting.

She said after those men in black uniforms and masks, whom she later learned were actually none other than Macedon Police Chief John Colella and his thugs with badges, put her in the back of a hot police car, while they tore her home apart, Chief Colella came over to her and asked her “Who uses the computer in the bedroom?” and Phyllis Loquasto answered “I do.”

Macedon Police Chief John Colella then asked the 75 year old grandmother “Do you have problem with officer Demchuck?”

With Colella’s question, it was obvious that he looked through Phyllis Loquasto’s personal, and private documents, etc on her computer, as Demchuck’s name was on her computer in relation to her granddaughter’s death.

Then, without Phyllis Loquasto mentioning anything whatsoever about her granddaughter Chelsea Lynn, Chief Colella said “I don’t even know Chris, I only met him once.”

Why would Colella even make this unsolicited comment about a man who is a suspect in a young woman’s suspicious death?

Was this a telling slip on Colella’s part?

You see, just a few days before Macedon Police Chief John Colella and his WayneNET task force cops broke into Phyllis Loquasto’s home, held her at gunpoint on her bathroom floor and shot her dog, the 75 year old had sent an email to Ron Holdraker, the owner and editor of the Times of Wayne County, a small newspaper, expressing her frustrations over the Macedon Police department’s incompetent handling of her granddaughter’s suspicious death.

If you ask me, Ron Holdraker, the “pro-law enforcement” editor of the Times of Wayne County newspaper, gave his good ol’ buddy Chief Colella a heads up after he received Phyllis Loquasto’s email.

Just a good ol’ boys club in Macedon, NY a small town with a population of approximately 10,000 people.

Corrupt cops and a self described “pro law-enforcement” owner/editor of the Times of Wayne County, a small, insignificant joke of a newspaper, who backs those corrupt cops up.

Cops who retaliate, by breaking down a senior citizen’s door, holding her at gunpoint on her bathroom floor, and executing an innocent dog.

A beautiful young woman named Chelsea Lynn is dead.

As her mother said, “I have no doubt my daughter was murdered.”

Her husband?

After his wife’s wake, he bought himself a new Ford Mustang and headed south.

While Macedon, NY Police Chief and his gang terrorized a 75 year old gradmother, and killed her innocent pet, they just may have allowed a killer to go free.

Driving his Mustang somewhere in Georgia.

 

Contact Macedon, NY Police Chief John P. Colella and let him know how you feel.

 

Macedon, NY Police Chief and WayneNET Commander John P. Colella (315) 986-4121

or (315) 986-7436 E-mail: jpcolella@rochester.rr.com

 

WayneNET Sgt. Roger LaClair (315) 947-9711 / WayneNET Chief Deputy Bob Hetzke (315) 946-9711

 

Contact Times of Wayne County Owner/Editor Ron Holdraker at

(315) 986-4300 or email him at waynetimes@aol.com

 

UPDATE: Almost a month after this incident, the Rochester, N.Y. Democrat and Chronicle newspaper is doing a story. 


Reporter Justin Murphy told me that a friend of  his sent him an email with the link to my blog, my original story on this case, and that the editors at the newspaper decided to do a story.

 


Wayne County, NY Cops Home Invasion-Style Break In and Execution of a 75 Year Old Grandmother’s Dog May have Been Retaliation is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights

Women in Prison Fare Better in China

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012
The New York Times today reported that women imprisoned in China fare better than women imprisoned in the United States. Here are some highlights:

  • Women aren't shackled during childbirth.
  • When the police arrest a woman who is pregnant, she cannot be sent to prison or detention. According to Wang Jingling, one of China’s leading researchers on women in prison, “Generally she stays at home and is monitored in her district.

read more

Over 90 Arrests of D.C. Police Officers in Under 4 Years

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

The following article comes from the Washington Examiner.

In the past three and a half years, more than 90 D.C. police officers — from detectives to captains to the rank-and-file cops on the street — have been arrested, a Washington Examiner analysis of police data has revealed.

Metropolitan Police Department officers have been nabbed within the District and as far away as Florida. They’ve been arrested on charges ranging from to child pornography to murder. The majority are DUI and domestic violence arrests, though some cases stand out.

– Detective Richmond Phillips was arrested in June 2011 in Prince George’s County and accused of killing his girlfriend and their 1-year-old daughter.

– Last weekend, Capt. Lamar West was charged with assault after he allegedly choked his wife in the backseat of an SUV before being subdued by another passenger.

– Officer Larry Seay was indicted on nine counts involving alleged sexual abuse of three women.

By contrast, Philadelphia — a city whose police force dwarfs Washington’s, with 6,600 sworn officers to D.C.’s 3,800 — saw just six officers arrested this year as of July, according to statistics from the Philadelphia Police Department. D.C. has seen 19 officers arrested this year. Only 18 officers were arrested in Philadelphia in 2011, compared with 29 in D.C.

“My impression is that the Washington numbers are just unprecedented,” said Samuel Walker, a professor at the University of Nebraska at Omaha and an expert on police accountability. “The other occasions when you’ve had large numbers of arrests are a major corruption scandal. Those are sort of clustered when you get a major scandal. Washington appears to be different on that score.”

MPD representatives say they can’t speak for other departments, but D.C. police officers are required to report themselves to the department if they’ve been arrested off-duty — when the majority of arrests occur, police spokeswoman Gwendolyn Crump said.

D.C. police have launched several internal education campaigns designed to deter cops from alcoholism and domestic violence, but some say that’s not enough.

Kris Baumann, the head of D.C.’s Fraternal Order of Police chapter, says rank-and-file officers are embarrassed by the large numbers of arrests in their department and want the MPD to reinstitute its Police Officer Standards and Training Board – which, they allege in a lawsuit, has not operated since 2007. Crump declined to comment on the lawsuit.

Last week, the MPD also disbanded its unit that investigates officer-involved shootings, saying it was no longer necessary and seven of its officers and all of its caseload will be folded into the Bureau of Internal Affairs.

In contrast, a Philadelphia police spokesman said Friday that Philadelphia’s department has added 50 personnel to its Internal Affairs Division to investigate wrongdoing by cops.

Baumann says his union isn’t interested in defending officers accused of crimes and has pushed the D.C. Council to institute better hiring standards in the department. He slammed what he alleged is a departmental culture by which officers aren’t held accountable for wrongdoing.

“The public should be shocked and the city should be ashamed,” he said. “These are not just a bunch of DUI arrests — not that those are acceptable. These are guilty pleas or convictions on serious, serious felonies. I hope this is finally a wake-up call.”

 

This story was shared with us by Joe!

Over 90 Arrests of D.C. Police Officers in Under 4 Years is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights

McAlester Police Officer Uses a Taser on Woman in Custody

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

A McAlester police officer is now facing disciplinary action after using a Taser on a woman in custody.

McAlester Police Officer Uses a Taser on Woman in Custody is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights

NYPD Officer Fatally Shoots Victim Fleeing a Hold-up; Robbers Charged With Murder

Monday, September 10th, 2012

ReynaldoCueves CopBlock NYPD Officer Fatally Shoots Victim Fleeing a Hold up; Robbers Charged With MurderReynaldo Cuevas, a twenty year-old Bronx bodega worker, had been working long hours at his family’s deli to support his daughter. On September 7, 2012, night manager Felix Mora said Cuevas had clocked out for the night but doubled back to Aneuryns Deli Grocery to grab a bar of soap and to lock the door to an area in the store behind bulletproof glass, which he had forgotten to do before leaving. While inside, three men came into the deli and held the workers up at gunpoint.

A masked Orlando Ramos, 31, pointed his .32-caliber handgun at the workers while accomplices Ernesto Delgado, 28, and Christopher Dorsey, 17, grabbed packs of Newport cigarettes, scratch-off tickets and $718, cops said.

While this was taking place, a customer ran across the street to call 911.

Policia! Policia! Policia!” Ramos yelled as cops from the NYPD’s housing unit PSA 7 and the 42nd Precinct arrived.

He and Delgado fled to the back of the bodega, leaving their unarmed accomplice, Dorsey, in the front, cops said.

Surveillance cameras captured video as the workers darted from the store at about 2AM. Mora was able to quickly convey to the officers that he had been held up at gunpoint. In an understandable attempt to leave the area as quickly as possible, Cuevas accidentally ran into one of the officers, at which point the officer immediately shot him in the shoulder. Cuevas was pronounced dead at the hospital — and now, according to ‘authorities’ the robbers are on the hook for his death.

Since he was killed during a robbery, the three men accused of trying to rob the store were slapped with murder charges — even though they hadn’t brought bullets.

 Christopher Dorsey, Ernesto Delgado and Orlando Ramos were charged with robbery and weapons possession, in addition to murder.

Dorsey surrendered immediately, and hostage negotiators tried to coax the others out, police said. Delgado finally surrendered after police threatened to unleash a dog into the store, sources said. Emergency Service Unit officers went in for Ramos and found him tied with yellow rope to a pole in the basement — a ruse to trick cops into thinking he was also a victim, police said.

The officer who fired his weapon, a seven-year veteran, was taken to Jacobi Hospital for observation and placed on administrative duty.The officer had never fired his weapon on duty before, sources said.

Cuevas’ death was a crushing blow to his family, especially his mother — coming just two years after his father was gunned down by a chain-snatching thug in the Dominican Republic. Cuevas’ distraught mother fainted from the stress as she went to view his body at St. Barnabas Hospital.

“She’s beside herself. She lost her sister and her husband in two years and now this,” said family friend Marisela Rodriguez, 41. “She can’t handle it.”

Source: New York Post

 Stick-up suspects (from left): Christopher Dorsey, Ernesto Delgado and Orlando Ramos

RobberySuspectsCopBlock NYPD Officer Fatally Shoots Victim Fleeing a Hold up; Robbers Charged With Murder

Christopher Dorsey, Ernesto Delgado, and Orlando Ramos were completely in the wrong for threatening and robbing the people in the store that evening, and they should absolutely be held 100% accountable for their actions. While I certainly wouldn’t go so far as to say those three men do not share a portion of the responsibility for the unexpected turn of events, they were not the ones who killed Reynaldo Cuevas and I think that the officer involved should be held accountable for his actions as well. Why would the officer chose to shoot somebody who accidentally ran into him? You see, even if it had been one of the robbers who ran into him, discharging his firearm was unnecessary – the collision would have given him an ideal opportunity to detain the suspect.

I am not saying the officer who shot Reynaldo Cuevas had any ill intent – from what I have read about the situation, I honestly do not believe he did, and he probably feels awful about it. What I am saying, is that although the officer did not intend to harm a victim fleeing from the holdup, he did. He made a bad decision when he pulled that trigger and he is responsible for that decision, therefore he ought to be held accountable for his actions rather than transferring blame and implying that Reynaldo Cuevas’ death was solely the fault of the three men who robbed the store.

NYPD Officer Fatally Shoots Victim Fleeing a Hold-up; Robbers Charged With Murder is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights

NEW Print-Ready Flyers

Monday, September 10th, 2012

The easier it is to share ideas the more-likely it is to happen, right?

The print-ready flyers below were created for that very purpose. Print as many copies as you want. Please!

beware known gang members flyer copblock 231x300 NEW Print Ready Flyers

Beware, known criminal gang members . . .

.
download print-ready .jpg

download print-ready .pdf

1-pg, print-ready, poster/handout

Beware! Known criminal gang members are roaming the highways and your neighborhood.

They swear an oath to their brotherhood – “The Thin Blue Line”

This flyer was based on a Cop Watch flyer – version 1.0. In early 2012 Beau Davis, Ademo Freeman & Pete Eyre brainstormed on how to make it more strike-the-root. The Beware, known criminal gang members . . . version 2.0. Version 3.0, above, was revamped by Meg McLain to be print-ready.


did you know tearoff copblock 231x300 NEW Print Ready Flyers

Did You Know? (tear-off)

.
download print-ready .jpg

download print-ready .pdf

1-pg, print-ready, tear-off

Did you know?
The man on the right is supposedly committed the crime?

Whose Side Are You On?
Across the country, police officers are waging a war on cameras. Individuals are being harassed, assaulted, detained and arrested for legally taking photographs or filming public officials on duty. These “public servants” are also unlawfully confiscating cameras and destroying photographs and videos. What do they have to hide?


.

bw know your rights copblock front 204x300 NEW Print Ready Flyers

bw know your rights copblock back 204x300 NEW Print Ready Flyers

Know Your Rights

.
download print-ready jpg front

download print-ready .jpg back

download print-ready pdf both sides

Quarter-sheet flyers, print-ready (.pdf has four to a page)

Warning! Heavy Police Threat in Effect! Know Your Rights!

Tips on how to safeguard your rights on front coupled with strike-the-root text on back and a space for you to include your own message, links or meetup details.


.[f

protect yourself with camera flyer copblock 300x231 NEW Print Ready Flyers

Protect Yourself With a Camera

.
download print-ready .jpg

download print-ready .pdf

1-pg, print-ready, room top/bottom to write

Protect Yourself!
Arm yourself with a camera. Document all criminal interactions.


These flyers are now among the resources listed at copblock.org/flyers and included in the Know Your Rights collection embedded below.

Want more? Check out the flyer those involved with Nevada Cop Block created "Beware Local Gang Activity Reported in Your Area"

If you create a flyer that you think would be utilized by other Copblockers please do share it with us: copblock@gmail.com The sooner we each stand-up against claimed double standards the sooner the widespread, institutionalized violence stops.

NEW Print-Ready Flyers is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights

Ohio & Minnesota Cop Block Meetups/Blocks This Week!

Monday, September 10th, 2012

I’m excited! Later today I’m going to meet-up with some of the awesome folks who got Ohio Cop Block off the ground. And on Friday I’ll connect in-person for the first time with those who did the same in Minnesota, my old stomping grounds.

If you’re in the area, I hope you can join us!

ohio copblock1 300x198 Ohio & Minnesota Cop Block Meetups/Blocks This Week!What: Monday, Sept. 10th: Ohio Cop Block meetup/block
Where: Water Street Bar & Grille, Sandusky, OH
When: We’ll meet at 8pm at the restaurant to chat, grub, and brainstorm, then 1-2 hours later we’ll roll out, armed with cameras and knowledge, to help keep the streets safe
Facebook Event: Meet with Pete Eyre co-founder of Copblock and go out and do some blocking

minnesota copblock 300x198 Ohio & Minnesota Cop Block Meetups/Blocks This Week!What: Friday, Sept. 14th: Minnesota Cop Block meetup/block
Where: La Hacienda Plaza, E. 334 Lake St., Minneapolis, MN
When: We’ll meet at 8pm at the restaurant to chat, grub, and brainstorm, then 1-2 hours later we’ll roll out, armed with cameras and knowledge, to help keep the streets safe
Facebook Event: Minnesota Cop Block meetup/street

If you won’t be able to join us don’t let that stop you from connecting and collaborating with others in your area to make your community better, safeguard your rights, and hold would-be aggressors accountable. Below is a map and list of all known Cop Block groups (blue pins), Cop Watch groups (red pins) and a few like-minded offshoots.

If there’s none in your area change that! http://copblock.org/startagroup (steps #2, 3 and 8 are probably most-important to hit the ground running).

.


View CopBlock.org Friends in a larger map

Alabama
Alaska
Arizona

Arkansas
California

  • Berkeley Cop Watch – Facebook
  • California Cop Block – Facebook
  • Cop Block Los Angeles – Facebook / copblockla@gmail.com
  • Cop Block Imperial Valley – Facebook
  • Orange County Cop Block – Facebook / Twitter
  • Redwood Curtain Cop Watch – website / (707) 633-4493 / copwatchrwc@riseup.net
  • San Diego Cop Block – Facebook
  • Santa Ana Cop Watch – Facebook

Colorado

  • Denver Cop Block – Facebook
  • West Denver Cop Watch – website / (720) 369-2741 / westdenvercopwatch@riseup.net

Connecticut

Delaware
Florida

Georgia

  • East Atlanta Cop Watch – website / (678) 390-0393
  • Georgia Cop Block – Facebook / Twitter / georgiacopblock@gmail.com

Hawaii
Idaho

Illinois

Indiana

Iowa

Kansas

Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts

Michigan

Minnesota

Mississippi
Missouri

  • Central Missouri Copblock – Facebook / Twitter / centralmissouricopblock@gmail.com
  • MO/KS Cop Block – Facebook

Montana
Nebraska
Nevada

New Hampshire

New Jersey

  • Ocean County Cop Block – Facebook / oceanountycopblock@gmail.com

New Mexico
New York

North Carolina

North Dakota
Ohio

Oklahoma

Oregon

  • Rose City Cop Watch (Portland) website / (503) 715.1409 / info@rosecitycopwatch.org

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island
South Carolina

South Dakota
Tennessee

Texas

Utah
Vermont

Virginia

Washington

Washington, D.C.

West Virginia
Wisconsin

Wyoming
International

Ohio & Minnesota Cop Block Meetups/Blocks This Week! is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights

Police Accountability Report: Episode 60 – LRN.fm

Sunday, September 9th, 2012

This week, a couple of stories that should cause anyone critically thinking to see that those wearing badges aren’t always operating with the best intentions.

Little Rock PD Officer Josh Hastings Charged with Manslaughter
http://www.copblock.org/20645/lrpd-officer-josh-hastings-has-6-suspensions-in-5-years

No Shooting at Protest? Police May Block Mobile Devices via Apple
http://www.copblock.org/20583/no-shooting-at-protest-police-may-block-mobile-devices-via-apple

Please take a few moments to check out CopBlock.org/FreeAdemo to get up to date on why the CopBlock Founder is currently behind bars at Valley Street Jail in Manchester, NH after an attempt to hold public officials accountable.

That’s this week’s Police Accountability Report. Until next week, stay safe and remember that badges don’t grant extra rights.

CopBlock Podcast logo 320x71 Police Accountability Report: Episode 60   LRN.fm

Police Accountability Report: Episode 60 – LRN.fm is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights

Is the Body Slam A New Standard in Police Arrests of Women and Girls?

Sunday, September 9th, 2012
Why do police male police officers seem to be body-slamming female members of the public to the pavement all across America?

The girl in the above video has an African-American father and Latino mother. Did her skin color or skin color group participation play a roll in the officer's decision to slam her to the pavement?

Official Cop Block Press Passes: Take Your Activism to the Next Level

Sunday, September 9th, 2012

This post was written by Kelly Patterson and originally posted to Nevada Cop Block:

Whether you are a regular contributor to Cop Block, an activist; who knows the value of keeping a camera handy when dealing with police and other government officials, or simply a fan who wants to demonstrate your support for what Cop Block does and spread the word to others, there is a new tool available to make it easier for you to do so.

Official Cop Block press passes are designed as a multifunctional option for anyone involved with Cop Block, as well as a convenient and attractive way to support Cop Block’s goals of holding law enforcement accountable for their actions. They act as both a visual indicator that you value your rights and a prominent warning to anyone that might want to infringe upon them.

Over the years, Cop Block has expanded from a small “DIY” style project into a fully functioning independent media outlet with a prominent national online presence and over thirty (and counting) satellite organizations located in cities throughout the United States and even beyond those imaginary borders. The establishment of official Cop Block press passes represents the next step in that evolution in which we serve notice to the world that we won’t be marginalized or overlooked, but are asserting ourselves as a legitimate member of the media.

Plus, they look really cool!

Keep reading below for more detailed reasons why you need and/or want to get your hands on a press pass (and additional pictures) or just order one right now and keep it within reach, along with your camera.

Keep reading below for more detailed reasons why you need and/or want to get your hands on a press pass (and additional pictures) or just order one right now and keep it within reach, along with your camera.




pixel Official Cop Block Press Passes: Take Your Activism to the Next Level

Get Your Cop Block Press Pass

Fill-out the information below, attach your picture and PayPal 10FRNs (AKA: $) to "kellywpatterson@gmail.com" - (click the button below) - Press passes are created biweekly.
  • pixel Official Cop Block Press Passes: Take Your Activism to the Next Level

Why You Need an Official Cop Block Press Pass

PressPass 004a 300x285 Official Cop Block Press Passes: Take Your Activism to the Next Level

Official Cop Block press passes are available for the national CopBlock.org network and any of the local Cop Block affiliates located in over thirty different cities.

The days of blogs primarily being a dumping ground for photoshopped cat pictures and tales of teenaged girls’ frustrations with their BFFs have long since passed. What has come to be known as “citizen journalism” has evolved into an important element of the media. Many of the scandals and abuses by public officials in recent years have been exposed by bloggers. Absent potential conflicts of interest created by political or sponsorship concerns, grassroots journalists can and often do report the things mainstream outlets are unable or unwilling to.

At Cop Block, members have varying reasons for being involved and levels of availability. However, those of us that understand the critical need for accountability for police take this responsibility very seriously. As a result, we want to  encourage others to add their own unique skills to the mix in as easy and safe a way as possible.

Safety can be an important consideration when confronted by an armed, aggressive, and at times violent person. This is, of course, why we encourage filming the police in the first place. Whether you are simply creating an unbiased record of your own interactions with badge wearing government employees on a random encounter or while actively seeking to confront official abuses, having a press pass can provide an extra layer of security.

There are several important protections afforded by the First and Fourth Amendments to the Constitution in regards to documenting the actions of public officials. Citizens can’t be forced to stop recording police activities in public places, nor can cameras, photos, or film legally be confiscated. Even in the event of an arrest, such items must be returned intact and can’t be searched without a warrant.

Cops obviously don’t always follow even their own rules, but an official Cop Block press pass serves as a visual warning to them that you know your rights and intend to use them. Even if you are unlucky enough to run across a police officer that completely disregards the Constitution and his legal responsibilities, establishing yourself as a legitimate member of the press reporting on a newsworthy issue makes it that much easier to seek compensation for those transgressions against First Amendment protections later.

Another important function of a press pass is the access it can provide to important events. In the future, members of Cop Block shouldn’t limit themselves to hacking at the branches of police brutality if there is an opportunity to strike at the root of corruption. Rather than only confronting an individual officer out in the field, if the local sheriff, mayor, district attorney, etc. schedules a press conference or other public appearance, request press access and ask them directly why one of their employees beat, shot, or wrongfully arrested someone in your city and what they intend to do about it.

As a member of a network that advocates for police accountability, you may encounter some initial resistance from those in charge of media access, but the combination of a legitimate, professional looking press pass and a good First Amendment argument can go a long way toward getting you in the same room with those who are supposed to enforce the policies. And even if they aren’t willing to answer your questions, at least you can put them on notice that there is someone watching the watchmen.

Furthermore, something that can help make it easier for you to seek accountability is the perception that accompanies those efforts. One thing that many organizers and activists learn early is that mindsets matter, both in regards to those trying to make change and those they encounter in the process. When you think of yourself as a legitimate, professional member of the media you are more likely to act as such and when you behave in a professional manner people are less likely to resist your efforts to do so.

I can actually tell you from personal (albeit anecdotal) experience that there is a perceptible difference in the way you are received when displaying a professional looking press pass, both by PR people that control access to events and by security and/or police you might encounter. Even in instances where media credentials aren’t required, you are less likely to be questioned about why you are filming and anyone that does question you is more likely to take into consideration legal ramifications that might result from interfering with members of the media.

As already stated, one of the purposes of issuing press passes is to serve notice to those we come into contact with that we are acting as and expect to be treated as an independent media outlet. Additionally, that same intent extends to those wearing the press passes and to encourage them to expect and even demand such recognition.

Yet another benefit to using a press pass when filming in public is that it give any innocent bystanders that might not want to be in a video or photograph an opportunity to get out of the way. This is both a matter of courtesy and a way of avoiding unnecessary conflict with people that aren’t doing anything wrong.

Why You Want an Official Cop Block Press Pass

PressPass 005 300x242 Official Cop Block Press Passes: Take Your Activism to the Next Level

Official press passes come laminated to protect them from damage and include extra space for a lanyard (not included) to be attached.

Even if you can’t or just aren’t interested in actively participating in Cop Block activities, there are several reasons why you will want an official Cop Block press pass. Not only do they make great souvenirs and gifts, but they are a way for you to show your personal support for Cop Block and police accountability.

Much like Cop Block’s other merchandise, these press passes are a visual symbol of your belief that everyone should be held to the same standard and the act of putting on a badge and certain outfit shouldn’t confer special privileges upon someone.

Wearing a Cop Block press pass also creates an easy opportunity for outreach to others in your community. Cop Block’s logo and URL are prominently featured in the design of the press pass. Anyone who views them will gain the opportunity to be exposed to a site dedicated to holding law enforcement officials accountable.

Beyond that, the uniqueness of it is sure to serve as a conversation starter and enable you to have discussions with your friends, neighbors, and even random strangers about the violence, corruption, and encroachment on personal liberties committed by government employees and the importance of holding them accountable for such abuses, when they occur.

Plus, each press pass is a unique, personalized souvenir. Featuring your own name and photo, as well as the option of choosing the main Cop Block site or an affiliate in your own town, if there is one (if not, you can always start one). Either way they add up to a great keepsake that will make you stand out in the crowd. Order one today for yourself or as a memorable gift for a fan of Cop Block and what we do to make the world a more just place.

If you are ready to make that leap from activist to a member of the grassroots media ORDER YOUR PRESS PASS RIGHT NOW!

Official Cop Block Press Passes: Take Your Activism to the Next Level is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights