Know Your Rights!

Shawn Peterman (Southeast Alabama Cop Block) shared this post via CopBlock.org’s submit page.

A little knowledge and a few words can go a LONG way toward getting a cop to leave you alone and move on to easier prey.

Two simple phrases that could change the way the police deal with people everywhere:

1) “Officer, am I being detained or am I free to go?” Saying that line will usually make a cop believe that you are very aware of your rights (even if you’re not). It will also usually encourage him/her leave you alone and look for easier prey. In order to detain you, he/she must at least suspect you of committing a specific crime.

2) “Officer, I am not resisting you, but I do not consent to ANY searches.” Say that loud and clear, and in front of witnesses. Prisons are full of people who claim that the cops put drugs in their vehicles. True or not, saying this will usually stop cops from searching or least make them send for a dog. In either case, this will often encourage them find easier prey.

Bonus: “Officer, I’d prefer to not produce ID at this time. What crime do you suspect me of committing?” Great line for a pedestrian stop. While you have to show ID in a traffic stop in Alabama (and most other states), according to Alabama law (2006 Alabama Code – Section 15-5-30) law enforcement is only able to demand ID from a person that he/she “reasonably suspects is committing, has committed, or is about to commit a felony or other public offense.” Even then, he’s only allowed to demand your name, address and your reason for being where you are. Check your local laws. Remember this the next time you’re walking down the street and a cop appears and demands your papers.

For more information, check out: www.flexyourrights.org, www.copblock.org facebook.com/southeastalabamacopblock

Shawn Peterman (Southeast Alabama Cop Block)

Know Your Rights! is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights


Toledo Police Reckless Driving

Aaron Collins shared this post via CopBlock.org’s submit page.

Date of Interaction: July 20, 2014
Police Employees Involved: TPD K-9 Unit 419
Police Employee Contact Information: 419-245-3246

On July 20, 2014, I was passed by Toledo Police car 419 while on I-75 South near Rossford. I myself was doing 70 mph in a 65 mph zone. I kept an eye on the officer and after several miles of extremely unsafe driving – cutting off drivers and driving in two lanes at once – I decided to start recording. Here is the entire video from start to finish. I apologize for the quality early on, but my video camera was out of reach and my windshield is a bit dirty. It does get better.

Aaron Collins

Toledo Police Reckless Driving is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights


This post was shared anonymously via CopBlock.org’s submit page.

Police Employees Involved: Altedena Sheriff’s Sergeant Barajas

Five sheriff’s deputies banged on my door, guns out, demanding to do a parolee search.

I told them they had the wrong place and person.

I asked if they had a search warrant and they said they did NOT need one.

They said if I didn’t open the door, they’d bust it down (and they had the door-ramming device just outside my door).

I cracked open the door (with the chain still on) so they could see I wasn’t the person they searched for, but they displayed guns and ordered me to open it. They then detained me at gunpoint and forced me outside while they did an apartment search without my permission.

I am NOT on parole and have never been arrested. I am NOT related to and I do NOT know the guy they were searching for.

Later, I talked with the apartment owner who said they must have had the wrong apartment because the person they ‘said’ they were searching for never lived in that apartment.

Can I sue them for violation of civil liberties?

Will lawyers reject the case because they couldn’t get enough money since I wasn’t shot or seriously injured?

Police Forced Apartment Entry and Conduct Search on Wrong Apartment is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights


Trevor Lyman shared this post, which he originally published at LibertyCrier.com, via CopBlock.org’s submit page.

Those of us that are aware of the problem of police brutality are desperately looking for a way to stop it via peaceful means.

I believe that if the majority of the public were to open carry (which I would call “massive open carry”), police brutality would diminish greatly for two main reasons:

1.) More often than not, the would-be victim of police brutality will be armed under these circumstances. Police are absolutely more considerate and careful when dealing with someone who is armed and who can defend themselves. This is the way all bullies behave. They prey on the weak, and in an environment of open carry, there are simply fewer of the weak to prey on.

2.) Under massive open carry, it is more likely that members of the public, who may be witnesses to police brutality, will be armed. A cop who is doing something that is clearly wrong and excessively violent while surrounded by a crowd of increasingly angry people who are all armed is likely to stop what he or she is doing. If necessary, the members of the public can stop the police officer from continuing their brutality and save the would-be victim’s life.

So if we’re looking for a way to reduce police brutality in a nonviolent manner, or at least with as little violence as possible, I believe that “massive” open carry is most likely our solution.

What do you think?  And would you get behind a movement to push this?

-Trevor Lyman

Can We Fight Police Brutality With “Massive Open Carry”? is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights


On July 21st, 2014, Cop Block – the decentralized project – was mentioned on the O’Reilly Factor.

It is interesting what Bill O’Reilly and Megyn Kelly choose to say, and what they choose to omit, or infer.

Check it out. And think for yourself.

______________

The O’Reilly Factor
July 21, 2014

“Spying” implies a secretive act. Filming the police creates an objective record, something that should be supported by those who value truth – police and non-police alike.

Controversial to those who fear transparency.

This clip is taken from a segment that aired July 16, 2014 on Dallas-Ft. Worth KXAS NBC5.

Joe Tye is active with Texas Cop Block. Jose Vela is active with Dallas Cop Block. [more with Jose: Jose Vela on Dallas Cop Block & Policing the Police]

  • Dallas Cop Block – Facebook / YouTube / dallascopblock@gmail.com
  • Texas Cop Block – Facebook / texascopblock@gmail.com

The Dallas-Ft. Worth area is also home to Tarrant Co. Peaceful Streets, Mesquite Cop Block, Lewisville Cop Block and White Settlement Cop Block. Known Groups: http://CopBlock.org/Groups

From CopBlock.org/About: We do not “hate cops.” We believe  that no one – not even those with badges – has extra rights. The failure to realize and act on that is to our detriment. By focusing the disinfecting light of transparency on public officials we safeguard not just our rights but those of future generations.

Is the priority of police employees their own safety or the safety of those they claim to protect? Dale Brown of Detroit’s Threat Management Center has some on-point remarks to that question.

“Enough stress on police”?  If police employes find their chosen gig too stressful, they’re always free to leave and find something productive to do.

“Clowns” “Paul Bunyan”? Using ad hominem attacks  distract from the real conversation – the double standards claimed and acted upon by individuals based on their place of employment.

If you choose to travel on two wheels, connect with Bikers Against Discrimination to know your rights. Also, see: CopBlock.org/KnowYourRights

Police are trained to escalate their use of force to gain compliance. Police watchers, on the other hand, are encouraged to remain calm, cool and collected.

Those “idiots” are people whom police claim to “serve” Is it surprising that some may have animosity toward police employees, who hassle, ransom or cage them for engaging in actions that cause no victim?

Are you a police employee? CopBlock.org/WelcomeLEOs

This statement by Ms. Kelly makes clear why so many have coalesced around the ideas of Copblocking

Police, despite well-meaning intentions, work for an outfit that’s based on double-standards – the claimed “right” to steal from others in the community, to then protect them. They have no incentive to satisfy their “customers” and courts say that they have no duty to protect you.

The content is titled “When Should You Shoot A Cop” – a big difference. If you own yourself, and have the right to defend yourself against an aggressor, it matters not what attire that aggressor wears, or where they work.

Ademo isn’t alone – millions have been wronged by those in the injustice system, and throughout history, by individuals who parrot “I’m just doing my job”

“Got caught”? Is Mr. O’Reilly so authoritarian that he believes individuals engaging in consensual interactions that harm no one else should be caged? What about the person who sold him his suit? Or his car?

Video recording anyone in public is “legal” but some self- proclaimed rulers may threaten or levy “wiretapping” charges in an attempt to deter the practice. See: CopBlock.org/FilmThePolice

Legislation does not equal law. Be careful not to conflate the former with the latter as it bestows upon the writers of legalese the arbitrary authority they seek.

If the police and their friends in legaland are left to define “interfere” or “harass” might they be inclined to kidnap and cage people, and levy baseless threats?

______________

Much love to everyone working to share truth, and to shine the disinfecting light of transparency on those who act in the wrong.

You are the network, and together, we’re shifting away from a reality that positions some as rulers and others as ruled, and instead, maximizes individual freedom and personal responsibility.

 

RELATED

Bill O’Reilly Attempts to Belittle the Positive Impact of Copblocking is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights


Derek Antol shared this post via CopBlock.org’s submit page.

Date of Interaction: July 09, 2014
Police Employees: Det.SGT Karl Schmitz, Trooper Vogt, Det Phillip Marshall, Det. Casey Bringedahl, Det. Kate Straus
Police Employee Contact: West Michigan Enforcement Team (WEMET) 231-759-9600 Det. Kate Straus 616-430-5606

On Wednesday, July 9th 2014, my store and both my homes were raided by state police (WEMET). I received a call from my fiance mid-afternoon informing me that there was somebody from the department of treasury, tobacco enforcement division, at the store inspecting our merchandise. He wanted to speak to the owner so I told her to put him on the phone. He stated that there were items in question at the store and that he was going to search the rest of the building. I told him he needed to leave and come back with a warrant. He told me that he was not going to leave.

Immediately, I dropped what I was doing and headed for the store. Upon my arrival, I found four people in my store that I did not recognize. Right away, I pulled out my phone and started videotaping everything. He asked about tobacco products in the store and I notified him that our products are not for use with, nor intended for use with tobacco. Then I showed him the sign on the wall which states this as well. I then asked him to leave, which he did not. I asked the identity of two officers who were accompanying him who then identified themselves as Sgt Schmitz, and Trooper Vogt. After my refusal to show them identification, I asked them for theirs and they refused. I insisted that if they are proclaiming to be officers of the law, that they needed to prove as much. They finally did.

Again, I asked these four persons to leave the store and get a warrant. They refused and proceeded to the rear of the building which is a completely separate business entity with its own tax identification number as well as a separate electrical meter. The people from the department of tobacco enforcement had no business going back there as it is not open to the public. They proceeded anyway. Upon searching the rear of the building, accompanied by the two state police officers, they observed marijuana that we were legally allowed to be in possession of. Again, the officers were told to leave and follow due process of law and obtain a warrant. Again, they refused to leave. Det/Sgt Schmitz then contacted Det. Phillip Marshall of WEMET and notified him of the marijuana found in the rear of the building.

Three years ago, WEMET raided our place of business and our home after illegally searching our vehicle without a warrant and against our will, and found us to be in possession of less than 12 ounces of marijuana. Under the state’s medical marijuana law, we are allowed to be in possession of 17.5 ounces. WEMET seized the marijuana along with all the cash we had and then proceeded to violate our rights after we had both invoked our 5th and 6th amendment rights. We were then taken into custody and further questioned against our will. To shorten that story, no charges were filed against us and our belongings, including the less than 12 ounces of marijuana, were returned to us after protesting outside the Muskegon County Hall of Justice where nearly 100 supporters stood with us. We filed a lawsuit against WEMET, Muskegon Police, and Muskegon County Prosecutors Office. The attorney we retained to handle this case screwed us around for two years and we ended up having to retain a local attorney to go after him for our retainer back. We in turn retained an attorney based in Lansing who handles these kinds of lawsuits against government entities. Unfortunately, the case exceeded the three year statute of limitations as is no longer active…which brings us back to this story.

After getting information of the marijuana found, Det. Phillip Marshall of WEMET contacted Det. Kate Straus of WEMET and notified her as to what the situation was, and a team was formed at my store. When they arrived, I asked them to see a warrant, which they did not provide because they didn’t have one. They were asked several times to leave the premises and come back with a warrant but they continued refusal to do so. Finally, our Muskegon based attorney arrived on the scene and we were escorted out of the building while they attempted to obtain a warrant. We were being detained at this time, but were not under arrest. Note that I had my two older sons with me at this time and my youngest son was at home sleeping while my buddy was there doing some electrical work for me.

By this time, I had been at the store with my sons for nearly an hour when I had their biological mother come pick them up. At this time, we were made aware of the fact that another team had assembled at my home on Green Creek where my son was sleeping, and also at my home that is for sale on Farr rd. Finally, around 5:15 pm, we were served with a search warrant for 885 East Apple, the location of my store. Upon reading the warrant, I found it very disturbing that the warrant was based on the fact that on June 4, 2013, one Det. Adam Dent entered the store showing a previously prepared FICTITIOUS application for a medical marijuana card under the Michigan Medical Marijuana Program MCL 333.2642, and a FICTITIOUS cancelled check made out to the State of Michigan. The application and a copy of a cancelled check is needed by a patient before they actually receive their tangible Patient Registry Identification Card in the mail, to prove to law enforcement that they have actually registered their application with the state. The state only cashes the check if the application is approved, THUS, the copy of the cancelled check is the only way of knowing a patient has been approved before obtaining their actual card.

With that being said, Det. Adam Dent’s entrapment of using FICTITIOUS credentials gained him access to the rear of the building where he impersonated himself as a Crohn’s patient and purchased some medical marijuana. Note: The MMMA allows a caregiver to possess up to 2.5 ounces of useable marijuana for each patient whom he or she is connected to through the department’s (LARA) registration process. It also allows a caregiver to possess up to 12 plants for each patient whom he or she is connected to through the department’s registration process. Furthermore, the act also states that a registered primary caregiver may receive compensation for costs associated with assisting a registered qualifying patient in the medical use of marihuana. Any such compensation shall not constitute the sale of controlled substances. It does NOT specify that such a patient need to be connected to them through the department’s registration process. Many patients who are new to the program are not convenienced by pharmacies that distribute the medicine; they are forced to obtain it through licensed caregivers who have what is referred to as “overage” until either (a) their own plants are harvested, which takes upwards of 5 months, or (b) someone who they have assigned as their caregiver through the state’s registration process, harvests their plants…which cannot be started until caregivership is approved by the state and take upwards of 5 months to grow.

As disturbing as it is that State Police waste taxpayer dollars by creating fake medical marijuana credentials, and then go after caregivers attempting to service the needs of the sick, what is even more disturbing is the fact that I later learned that while we were in custody at the 885 East Apple location, police entered my home and had my 12 year old son at gunpoint from a dead sleep, and began conducting a search BEFORE THE WARRANT WAS ISSUED! When my attorney asked Det. Kate Straus about my son’s statement of this happening, she admitted that officers entered the home before a warrant was issued. When asked about officers drawing weapons on my son and waking him up with flashlights and pistols in his face, she didn’t respond.

During the raid, officers seized cash, computers, cell phones (including those that were used earlier to record officers and their conduct in the store) and all marijuana and marijuana plants found. When I asked them why they were taking the marijuana and the marijuana plants, Det Kate Straus stated that they were being seized because they were not in a properly secured facility. I asked her how this was when they had to kick down the door to enter the home and she replied, “Because your realtor has a key for showing the house to prospective buyers and therefore has access to the marijuana.” I informed her that the area of the home where the marijuana is stored and cultivated is locked separately and nobody else has access to it, but it was too late. Officers had already came upon the area of the home where the marijuana was stored and cultivated and kicked in a second door now, into where the marijuana was stored. From there, they kicked a hole in the wall to gain access to where the marijuana was cultivated. After gaining entry to the cultivation area, they found the main door to the room and cut the master lock that was securing the facility. That’s how much of an improperly secured facility it was; so much so that they kicked a hole in the wall, and cut a lock. The plants had already been uprooted and the marijuana seized. Not only did they violate 333.26424(h) which states that any marihuana, marihuana paraphernalia, or licit property that is possessed, owned, or used in connection with the medical use of marihuana, as allowed under this act, or acts incidental to such use, shall not be seized or forfeited, but they also violated the due process of law by entering and searching the home on Green Creek before a warrant was issued, and used excessive force by holding my 12 year old son at gunpoint. Oh, and I forgot to mention that they also seized my cell phone and were going through it BEFORE the warrant was obtained.

Now, whether or not you are a supporter of marijuana use for medical purposes, the law is the law, and the law was passed by 63% of the voters in 2008. Surely it was not the intent of the voters to have their tax dollars expended in such a way where law enforcement would prepare fictitious credentials and use them to purchase medical marijuana from a licensed caregiver and then go after them for providing an alleged patient a service where the state does not provide it, in order to alleviate the symptoms of a debilitating condition as permitted in the definition of medical use in section 3 of the law. MCL 333.26423(f) “Medical use” means the acquisition, possession, cultivation, manufacture, use, internal possession, delivery, transfer, or transportation of marihuana or paraphernalia relating to the administration of marihuana to treat or alleviate a registered qualifying patient’s debilitating medical condition or symptoms associated with the debilitating medical condition. These officers MUST be held accountable for their actions and prevented from conducting themselves in such a way in the future.

They are pursuing criminal charges for two counts of delivery, which would not only incarcerate my fiance, but would get her medical marijuana patient card revoked, not to mention the five patients that she is a caregiver for, one of whom is a former Florida State Narcotics Agent who now resides in Michigan and uses marijuana to treat four different diagnosed kinds of cancer. This was all because they used fictitious paperwork that showed them to be approved by the state’s registration department. We have retained Nick Bostic in Lansing to file a lawsuit against them for their conduct, and to return any and all items seized in violation of MCL 333.26424(h).

It should again be noted that my cell phone was seized and searched before the warrant was obtained, and that the business was extensively searched after being told to leave the premises, also before the warrant was obtained.

Derek Antol

 

Radical, Irresponsible Behavior by Michigan State Police is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights


They Can’t Have It Both Ways!

Tammy Shah shared this post via CopBlock.org’s submit page.

Date of Interaction: May 30, 2014
Police Employees Involved: Officer Artie O’Connell – MA Environmental Police Badge # M24
Police Employee Contact Information: Major Len Roberts – len.roberts@state.ma.us – Captain Roger Thurlow – roger.thurlow@state.ma.us – Lt. Colonel Chris Baker – chris.baker@massmail.state.ma.us – Lt. Colonel Chris Baker 617-616-1650

On Friday May 30, 2014, at approximately 17:30, I was traveling westbound on the mass pike in the right lane with traffic flow. The traffic was slowing in the right lane due to a large vehicle at the front of the line of cars and trucks when myself and another vehicle ahead of me changed lanes to the left lane to pass. The vehicle in front of me sped away quickly. I increased my speed to about 70 to overtake the vehicles in the line of traffic. While traveling in the passing lane, a vehicle came up quickly to the rear of my car. I could see the headlights in my rearview and little else. The vehicle was traveling so closely to the back of my car that I could not see the license plate, all I could see were the headlights and a sturdy ‘cage’ type device on the front of the SUV. The vehicle was a large SUV type vehicle. I increased my speed to try to get past the line of vehicles quickly, but the SUV also increased speed accordingly and stayed dangerously close to the rear of my Prius. Traveling with my two dogs and my son in the car with me, I became nervous and was only concentrating on getting past the line of traffic and moving to the right so the SUV would no longer be tailgating me.

Once I cleared the end of the line of traffic, I swiftly moved to the right lane; the SUV immediately began to gain momentum to pass me and as I saw them come into my peripheral line of view on my left, I threw my hand up to display my frustration for their unsafe driving. Just as the vehicle came to the side of my car, and saw my hand up, they immediately slowed, flipped on blue lights, merged behind me and pulled me over. My son was in tears, my heart was racing, and I pulled to the side of the highway ASAP. The officer came to the side of my car and started barking orders. “License and registration!” I got my license out and handed it to him and was retrieving my registration when he demanded, “Do you know the speed limit on the Mass Pike?” I said it was 65. He said, “Yes, 65, NOT 80 like you were doing. Immediately I said that I was traveling so fast because he was too close behind me and I was scared; he cut me off before I could continue to speak, demanding my registration. The officer was intimidating and rude. He was intentionally trying to make me feel lesser with both his verbal behavior and his body language. I was clearly not a threat and I was not argumentative.

The officer returned to his SUV, still close behind my vehicle, and I could not identify what agency he was with. He left us sitting in the car for about twenty minutes. He finally returned and in an argumentative voice asked me if I knew what the left lane was for. I said, “Yes, for passing and…” He again cut me off and shouted, “YES, passing AND emergency vehicles! You are meant to enter the lane, pass the vehicle, exit the lane… enter the lane, pass the vehicle, exit the lane.” He was condescending and rude, treating me as if I was a child, and clearly trying to assert his dominance in the situation. I said I understood that, but that the line of traffic was tight and that he was too close to me, scaring me, and he again cut me off telling me that I had plenty of safe chances to make a lane change.

Well, I disagree! How can I safely lane change when someone is driving so close to my tiny vehicle with their huge SUV and any attempt I made to accelerate to give myself some breathing room was met with similar acceleration? The officer said he clocked me doing 80 and that doesn’t shock me, honestly. Anybody would speed to get away from what they feel is a potential danger – an unsafe driver! What if I had to stop quickly? He would have rammed the back of my car so hard everybody would have perished! His enormous SUV would have all but flattened my tiny Prius. Also, it amazes me that he was fully intent on passing me until I threw my hand in the air in disgust of his poor driving safety! Honestly, as far as I was concerned, he was still just some Joe on the highway being unsafe. I had no idea he was with law enforcement until he put the blue lights on. He didn’t like that I did that, so he pulled me over and he asserted his dominance over me the only way he could: to intimidate me, talk over me, and present me with a ticket. When he finished that and we pulled back on the highway, he immediately entered the left lane, accelerated quickly and ran up on the back end of another unsuspecting driver.

This officer is unsafe! His driving practices are unsafe and his actions reflect a poor attitude and a disrespect of other drivers; both on the road and face to face. He knew he was wrong, and he attempted to punish me as one would punish a child who acts out over an adults wrong doing.

Within approximately an hour after receiving my citation, I was at my mother’s house in Westfield, MA and I was placing calls to find out who his superior officer was and to lodge a complaint. It took me approximately four phone calls and around forty-five minutes (and the assistance of a very helpful State Police officer) before I got on the phone with the officer’s supervisor, Major Roberts. Major Roberts has assured me that he would investigate this situation and would be contacting me again on Monday June 2.

Since the issue, I spoke with Major Roberts on June 2nd, and Captain Roger Thurlow on June 3rd. Captain Thurlow had reviewed my driving record (which is clean) and talked with Officer O’Connell about the stop. The officer admitted to Captain Thurlow that he was ‘in a hurry to get to a location in need of a K-9 unit’, however Captain Thurlow told me it was not an emergency; a roundabout admission of guilt regarding speeding. Officer O’Connell also told the Captain that I had given him ‘the finger’. Captain Thurlow was careful to let me know that the officers are allowed a certain amount of ‘personal discretion’ when deciding to stop somebody or let them go. I told him that I wanted the ticket forgiven since Officer O’Connell’s hazardous driving was the catalyst for the whole situation.

To date, I have attempted to contact Captain Thurlow an additional two times. Only once did he answer me back, telling me my complaint concerning Officer O’Connell was ‘currently in the investigatory process. Please be assured that you will be contacted as soon as all pertinant reports are submitted and reviewed.” He has disengaged with me since June 6th, and ignored my second email, as did Major Len Roberts who was CC’d on the email. Finally on June 26th, I reached out to the acting Director Lt. Colonel Chris Baker with an email directly to him; but alas no response from him either. On July 17th, I phoned and left a voicemail with his admin/assistant.

My court date for the ticket issued is August 5, 2014 in Palmer, MA. Shame on them!

Tammy Shah

They Can’t Have It Both Ways! is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights


Every Monday, the Angel Clark Show is dedicated to highlighting police abuses.


Today we discussed:

 

New York man choked, killed when suspected of selling cigarettes on sidewalk

Eric Garner begged for air 8 times before falling silent.  (Source: Ramsey Orta)

A man died following a brutal arrest in which NYPD choked him and slammed his head against the sidewalk. Police say they suspected him of selling cigarettes without government permission.

 

Cop Who Murdered Man With Chokehold Striped Of Badge And Gun – BUT NOT FIRED

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The NYPD officer seen on video placing Eric Garner in a chokehold and bringing him to the ground with the help of three other officers Thursday outside of a Bay Street beauty supply store has been placed on modified assignment pending further investigation, an NYPD spokesman confirmed Saturday.

 

Four Emergency Workers Barred From Duty Following NYPD Chokehold Death

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Four emergency responders have been put on modified duty while authorities investigate their response to a man, suspected of selling untaxed cigarettes, who died after New York police put him in a chokehold, a fire department official said on Sunday.

 

Revealed: More Than 1,000 Complaints Of NYPD Chokeholds In Recent Years

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The Civilian Complaint Review Board has received charges of about 1,022 instances since 2009 in which New York Police Department (NYPD) officers were accused of using chokeholds. Use of such holds are prohibited by the NYPD’s patrol guidelines, which outline a chokehold as a “any pressure to the throat or windpipe, which may prevent or hinder breathing or reduce intake of air.”

 

NYPD Officer Who Allegedly Choked Eric Garner Has Already Cost City $30,000 For Unlawful Strip Search

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NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo, who was caught on video putting 43-year-old Eric Garner in an apparent chokehold resulting in death last Thursday over suspicion of selling loose cigarettes, has already been named as defendant in two civil suits that alleged improper police conduct including lying and false arrest.

 

Police came to wrong address, aimed laser sights at innocent homeowner

(Source: Jason Eppink / Flickr)

When a family residence was disturbed in the middle of the night by men dressed in black rattling doorknobs and aiming red laser sights in the window, a homeowner did what he felt necessary to defend his family. While harming no one, the man’s act of self-defense with a firearm landed him with charges of firing at police officers and put on trial.

 

City Will Fine Couple $500 For Not Watering Brown Lawn, State Will Fine’em $500 If They Do

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When you’re in a steady relationship, communication is clear. Because when mom says to do one thing, and dad says another, the kids get really confused. Such is the case in California, where the state has issued rules for homeowners to conserve water in the midst of extreme drought, with fines of $500 per day or violating those guidelines, but one city is threatening to fine a couple $500 — unless they water their lawn.

 

Florida city imposes fines and jailtime for violating dress code on public property

A suspected pants sagger concealing his waistline.  (Source: Reuters / Lucas Jackson)

 A city council has voted unanimously to impose a public dress code, enforceable by the police, and punishable by fines and up to 6 months in jail.

 

Teen hospitalized after being suspected of being out past police-imposed curfew

 

Merceedez Wright, 17, injured following curfew enforcement in Clairton, PA. (Source: KDKA)

 A teen’s evening excursion for ice cream resulted in her going to the hospital in a neck-brace, after police found her and her friends in public just a few minutes past the government-imposed curfew for minors.

 

Elderly dementia patient beaten, tased in the face for ‘aggressive’ walk

Albert Flowers in the hospital.

The subject of a controversial beating from 2011 has died following his traumatic brain injury. A mumbling, elderly dementia patient was kicked to the ground and beaten by an officer who feared that his life might be endangered by the man’s ‘aggressive’ walk towards him. The officer was later found to have tampered with his dash-cam, but remains on the Melbourne Police Department to this day.

 

Ohio man beaten unconscious when he declined to present ID

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A pedestrian suffered numerous injuries following a confrontation with police officers who violently demanded his identity.

 

Indiana forces retirement home to stop serving alcohol to residents

(Source: STasker / Getty Images)

State beverage cops showed up at a retirement community to demand that residents not be served alcoholic beverages, even while on private property that they call home.

 

Homicide Cop Arrested For Allegedly Having Sex In His Police Car With Teen Runaway

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A Miami Beach homicide detective was taken into custody Saturday, accused of having sex in a police car with a runaway teen he invited to live in his home.

 

Man Shot in the Back Over Unpaid Parking Tickets

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The coercive nature of the state is necessary for its existence. All decrees handed down from the ‘wise men’ on high, are upheld and enforced on the promissory action of state sanctioned violence.

 

Judge Busted for DWI Says “You are Going to Ruin my Life”, Pleads for Special Treatment

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Recently, a Texas appeals court judge named Nora Longoria was caught going just over the speed limit while traveling drunk in her Lexus late one evening.  When she was pulled over by police she immediately flashed her badge and told them that she was a judge.

 

Man Cited and Threatened With Arrest for Raising His Middle Finger

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Forest Thomer was flipping people off as they drove by Friday afternoon to express his freedom of speech and to garnish some attention for his Facebook page called “Art of a Mother Fucker.” Highland Heights Police officer Dave Bruener showed up and shut him down.

 

76-Year-Old Veteran Arrested for Asking City Official to Please Speak Louder

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During an Industrial Development Meeting at Greeneville Light and Power, US Veteran, Eddie Overholt was arrested for asking a city official to speak louder.

 

Police Seize And Sell Vehicles For Scrap

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The last time Lois Womble saw her 1990 Buick, a Hamlet police officer sat behind the wheel and drove it away after a traffic stop.

 

US Adding Millions To Its “Terrorist Database”

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The U.S. government is rapidly expanding the number of names it accepts for inclusion on its terrorist watch list, with more than 1.5 million added in the last five years, according to numbers divulged by the government in a civil lawsuit.

 

Police Chief Accused Of Signing Tea Party Member Up For Obamacare And Porn

'Hacker Typing On The Keyboard And Mocking' [Shutterstock] http://tinyurl.com/khbjrcw

A police chief in Wisconsin was charged on Thursday with creating accounts on pornographic and dating websites under the name of a local Tea Party advocate to even a score with him, court records showed.

 

Son Of Cop Awaiting Trial For Heinous Murder Files Complaint Over Jail Menu And Small Towels

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The son of a Joliet, Illinois, police officer awaiting trial for the strangulation murder of two men has filed a complaint with a Will County judge complaining about the lack of diversity in the jailhouse menu, too small towels, and overpriced items in the jail commissary.

 

Citizen Confronts Cop After Filming Him Driving Recklessly to Work. Cop Left Speechless.

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A vigilant citizen with a camera has done a perfect job of filming the hypocritical standard of which cops frequently adhere.

 

Cop VS Cop: Cop Pulls Over Cop; Cop Resists, Other Cop Tells Cop To Stop Recording Cops

Cop vs. Cop: Cop pulls over cop; cop resists, other cop tells cop to stop recording cops.

A Miami police officer pulled a car over for speeding last month, which turned out to be a plainclothes internal affairs lieutenant who shoved the door open on the officer after refusing to provide his drivers license, leading to a struggle on the side of the road that was caught on camera.

 

Man Arrested After Stabbing Watermelon

Connecticut man arrested after stabbing watermelon

They say she later returned home to find the watermelon on the counter with a butcher’s knife in it. She reported that Cervellino then entered the room and began carving the watermelon. She called the incident passive-aggressive and menacing.

 

Mother Begs Physician To Break Car Window After She Locks Baby Inside Hot Car — Cops Detain The Doctor

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An 8-day-old infant was inadvertently locked in a car on the way out of the pediatrician’s office. The firefighters couldn’t get the door unlocked, so the doctor, Stacey Williams, got a hammer from her office to break the car window and free the baby, even though this wasn’t quite the way the firefighters preferred to deal with the situation.  Enter Metro cop and brave hero, Michael Pyle.

 

Strippers Say Cops Photographed Them Nude During Club Inspections

Stripper dancing for man with money at exotic club (Shutterstock.com)

Thirty strippers in the San Diego area filed a lawsuit against the San Diego Police Department on Wednesday, saying they were forced to be photographed while nude or nearly nude while officers claimed to be inspecting the clubs where they worked.

 

No Charges For Cop With Questionable Past In Fatal Shooting Of Teen Holding Wii Controller

Christopher Roupe

A Georgia police officer won’t be charged in the fatal shooting of a teenager holding a video game controller — even though a previous grand jury found the use of force was not authorized.

 

Ex-Cop Gets 30 Days Work Release For Years Of TORTURING Girl: Zip-Tying, Punching, Choking

Former Berthoud Officer Jeremy Yachik (KMGH)

A former Colorado police officer who was found guilty of abusing a 15-year-old girl over a period of years was sentenced to 30 days of work release and three years of probation this week.

 

Teen Gets 23 Years In Prison For Fatal Shooting Of A Former Police Dog

Teen gets 23-year prison sentence for shooting retired K-9 [WPTV-TV]

A 17-year-old Florida boy was sentenced to 23 years in prison on Friday for the fatal shooting of a retired police dog.

 

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Police State Monday: Teenager Beaten For Breaking Curfew, Man Beaten Unconscious For Not Showing ID, Updates On Eric Garner, AND MORE is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights


Clairton, PA – the setting of the 1978 movie Deerhunter.

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014. Just after 10pm.

Two friends walked home. They’d just gotten ice cream.

A sedan approached, then slowed. Suddenly a door opened and a man burst out and ran toward the girls.

One of them – 17-year-old Merceedez Wright took off. She was scared. But the man was able to cover the ground.

According to friend Destiny Hester, the man “ran full force .. pounced on her, then started kicking her and pulling her hair.”

A bystander’s cellphone captured Merceedez’ screams. A nearby surveillance camera captured the three minute assault.

When the aggressor, then joined by two accomplices, attempted to force Merceedez to his car, she tried to escape. But she was tripped and kidnapped.

Eventually, Merceedez was hospitalized with cuts and bruises, and injuries to her trachea, esophagus and neck.

The men who beat her – far from being criminals on the run – are criminals being protected by the Clairton Police Outfit – where they work.

Those men – who have yet to be identified – had the gall to claim that their actions were just, and pointed to a dictate made by their friends, who conspire as a corporation called the “City of Clairton”

Please.

It is individuals who act and thus individuals alone who are responsible for their actions. Not policies. Not legalese.

Merceedez was peacefully walking. She was not committing any crime. She had caused no victim.

The criminals in this situation all wore badges. So much for the desired close relationship with the community.

If you have a moment, give those responsible a call: 412.233.6213

Much love to the individual who stopped to film!

And keep in mind that Merceedez, like each one of us, has the right to use self defense to thwart an aggressor.

As said by Lysander Spooner, “There can be no criminal intent in resisting injustice.”

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CLAIRTON POLICE OUTFIT

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Young Girl Assaulted By Three Men for “Breaking” Curfew is a post from Cop Block - Badges Don't Grant Extra Rights


The Hunger Strike One Year Later

To celebrate the movement: The California prisoner hunger strike one year later

“This is the third anniversary since we began using peaceful actions collectively to push for an end to the use of long-term solitary confinement. If we look back and remember before July 2011, we prisoners were alone, isolated, not being heard. We wrote newspapers and nothing was printed. We wrote lawmakers and never heard back. Few people knew how many of us were locked away in windowless cells for 23 hours a day (often more) here in California. Few understood how many others are kept in various forms of isolation here in our state in other SHUs, Ad Seg cells, mental health cells, including women and juveniles. Almost no one understood California’s place as the state that uses solitary confinement the most of anywhere … Today we celebrate our movement. We do not rely on the legislature or the courts alone. Only by a strong growing movement of those of us inside and our supporters outside do we have any hope to make all the changes that we need. You keep CDCR’s feet to the fire. We are grateful that you stand with us.” – Statement from Pelican Bay representatives, July 2014

One year ago on July 8, 30,000 California prisoners refused meals and work assignments, beginning a 60-day hunger strike with the core demand of ending the state’s use of indefinite solitary confinement. This was the largest hunger strike in U.S. history, and it presented the deepest challenge yet to solitary by bringing national and international attention to a practice that has long been condemned by human rights groups as torture.

To commemorate the historic strike and its ongoing significance to the struggle against solitary, statewide actions throughout California took place on its one year anniversary:

  • Over 100 community members held a rally and press conference in LA, including a statement in solidarity read by Danny Glover;
  • in San Bernardino, around 40 people composed mainly of prisoners’ friends and family members organized a vigil and spoke out about their loved ones inside;
  • Oakland witnessed events throughout the day beginning with a noontime rally led by family members, followed by a community gathering procession and vigil in the evening;
  • prisoners’ loved ones and supporters gathered in Santa Cruz to read out statements by prisoners, and set up a model Security Housing Unit (SHU) cell to continue shedding light on the torturous conditions of solitary.

Solidarity demonstrations were also planned nationally and internationally in cities like Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and London.

During last year’s hunger strike, both national and international media reported favorably about the prisoners’ peaceful action in spite of the California Department of Corrections’ (CDCR) attempts to discredit the strikers as “the worst of the worst, gang leaders” organizing a strike solely to expand their power within the prison. Hundreds of articles appeared in the press over the course of the strike, bringing an awareness of the cruelty of solitary to the public in unprecedented ways.

The call for the hunger strike was issued by a collective of prisoner representatives who had found common ground through their confinement in Pelican Bay. Their dialogue through adjacent cells led them to put aside their disputes and unite to challenge the worsening conditions in the prison system, especially to prevent more young people from being consigned to draconian sentences of indefinite solitary.

In 2012, these representatives issued the Agreement to End Hostilities, which called for an end to all violence between different groups of prisoners throughout the state. These representatives also issued the call for three hunger strikes between 2011 and 2013, articulated their demands, and sought to negotiate a resolution with the CDCR. The call for the third strike was met with an unprecedented response, with almost a quarter of California’s prison population participating in the beginning.

This strike was history-making in other ways as it fueled ongoing human rights struggles among prisoners in Alabama, Georgia, Ohio and Virginia as well as among immigration detainees in Washington state and Texas. Led by hundreds in Pelican Bay who have spent decades in isolation in violation of all international standards of confinement, their demands became the basis of a renewed call from behind the bars for the public to recognize the humanity of imprisoned people and to call for an end to mass imprisonment.

Many families of prisoners became public spokespeople for the first time, realizing that the lives of their loved ones were in their hands. They organized rolling solidarity fasts, held numerous vigils, and marched in 105-degree heat to a Central Valley prison to show their support for their loved ones on strike. They met with prison officials to demand a response from the CDCR, which refused to negotiate with the strikers. They broadened the international perspective by hosting events with U.N. Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan Mendez.

The courage and determination of the hunger strikers ignited a new level of solidarity among imprisoned people in California. As strikers faced intense repression by the CDCR – in the form of medical neglect, confiscation of medicine, threats of force-feeding (sanctioned by a federal judge) – prisoners shared their own limited resources, kept each other’s loved ones informed, and demanded medical care for those who were becoming increasingly ill.

After 60 days and one death, the strikers suspended their strike after California legislators committed to hold public hearings. In their statement suspending the strike, they said:

“To be clear, our peaceful protest of resistance to our continuous subjection to decades of systemic state sanctioned torture via the system’s solitary confinement units is far from over. Our decision to suspend our third hunger strike in two years does not come lightly. This decision is especially difficult considering that most of our demands have not been met – despite nearly universal agreement that they are reasonable. The core group of prisoners has been, and remains 100 percent committed to seeing this protracted struggle for real reform through to a complete victory, even if it requires us to make the ultimate sacrifice.”

The 2013 hunger strike represented the highest level of self-organization, empowerment and solidarity among prisoners that the California prison system had seen in decades, since the height of the prisoner rights movement led by George Jackson in the 1970s. The CDCR reacted as any government entity facing a serious threat to its power reacts, with an iron fist. Every prisoner who refused nine or more consecutive meals was issued a write-up charging them with participation in a gang-related activity, subject to progressive levels of discipline.

The 2013 hunger strike represented the highest level of self-organization, empowerment and solidarity among prisoners that the California prison system had seen in decades, since the height of the prisoner rights movement led by George Jackson in the 1970s.

After the strike, CDCR extended its repressive tactics to include the community outside by proposing a new level of censorship, banning any materials coming into or going out of the prison that “indicate an association with groups that are oppositional to authority and society.” These measures are designed to keep prisoners from writing about intolerable conditions, criminalize their attempts to organize, and destroy the connections and support from the community – lifelines for those who are living in extreme isolation.

From the courage and determination of the strikers, a new and vibrant movement for the human rights of prisoners is taking root. It forces us to ask ourselves what place solitary confinement could possibly have in a civilized society and more, what we are prepared to do to end it.

This article first appeared in the San Francisco Bay View on July 14, 2014 as “To celebrate the movement: The California prisoner hunger strike one year later“,
by Donna Willmott.