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Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Sat May 26, 2012 4:48 am UTC
by Thesh
iamspen wrote:Currency is the physical property of the US government ([edit]the federal government[/edit]


Even if that was true in a technical sense (and it probably isn't), I highly doubt that matters from a legal perspective.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Sat May 26, 2012 3:01 pm UTC
by qetzal
Regarding the 'no proof of insurance' ticket. I can imagine why the cop might have felt obligated to issue it. The guy's car has to be pulled from the river. Any related property damage has to be repaired. The guy's insurance might be on the hook for some/all of those costs. Plus, what if the guy was lying about what happened? Who's to say a witness might not come forward later and contradict the guy's whole story of how the accident happened?

If the cop doesn't issue the ticket at the time, can one still be issued later? If no ticket is issued, does it create problems for any legal case against the guy if it later turns out he really didn't have insurance, or that he was much more negligent than he claimed at the time? I have no idea, but if so, it would make perfect sense for the cop to issue the ticket at the time, even if he personally believed the guy was telling the truth.

Just a thought.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Sat May 26, 2012 11:10 pm UTC
by Ghostbear
lutzj wrote:Failure to engage child locks, individually, is a weak point against the father here, but: teaching your son how to get out of the car on his own, and then taking him to the river even though he can't swim, and then (apparently) not giving him stern instructions along the lines of "do not leave the car until I do" or "stay away from the river," and then not having a safety measure like child locks in place was irresponsible on his part.

With those extra precautions it's not at all implausible for the father to have taken them or attempted to do so. Children ignore instructions all the time, and it really isn't spectacularly unexpected for someone to think they pressed a button on their car while buckling up, when they actually didn't. Or for the child locks on his car to just not work, or for the child to have heard the instructions but understood them wrong, or just forgotten them in a moment of excitement, or...

iamspen wrote:Currency is the physical property of the US government ([edit]the federal government[/edit]

Beyond what Thesh said*, even if the money was the property of the US federal government, the people who confiscated the money were not agents of the US federal government; they were not employed by nor empowered by it. They were employees of the Tennessee state government.

* I did some searching of my own, out of curiosity, and found zero evidence of federal reserve notes being the property of the any government.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Sat May 26, 2012 11:46 pm UTC
by Iulus Cofield
I'm still not sure why you think that the father should be absolved of responsibility in this instance. Generally, you're still legally liable for accidents. Leniency is usually given, sure, but he also isn't being charged with reckless endangerment.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Sun May 27, 2012 12:14 am UTC
by Gears
Iulus Cofield wrote:I'm still not sure why you think that the father should be absolved of responsibility in this instance. Generally, you're still legally liable for accidents. Leniency is usually given, sure, but he also isn't being charged with reckless endangerment.
Because no damage was caused except to his own vehicle?

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Sun May 27, 2012 12:19 am UTC
by Ghostbear
Iulus Cofield wrote:I'm still not sure why you think that the father should be absolved of responsibility in this instance. Generally, you're still legally liable for accidents. Leniency is usually given, sure, but he also isn't being charged with reckless endangerment.

I've said (multiple times!) that he shouldn't be absolved of all responsibility. All I said was that going down the vein of "He should have just prevented it all with [easy solution]!" is going down the path of victim blaming, because none of those "easy" solutions are infallible, nor do we know that they weren't tried, nor are they necessarily easy when placed in a sudden moment of stress.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Sun May 27, 2012 10:15 pm UTC
by lutzj
What is the father a victim of? Circumstance? There were many things he could have done to prevent this whole situation that he failed to do. He put his son at risk of drowning and other people at risk of being hit by his car. The only other place we could possibly assign blame is with the child, but the child's actions are still the responsibility of his parents. I don't see how your analogies to victim-blaming are relevant at all.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Sun May 27, 2012 11:31 pm UTC
by Diadem
Ghostbear wrote:* I did some searching of my own, out of curiosity, and found zero evidence of federal reserve notes being the property of the any government.

Physical money is generally still property of the state (or central bank). I suppose the US could be an exception to this rule, but I've never heard of them being one. I don't know who owns Euro coins, but on our old money (Dutch guilders) there was actually a line saying: "Property of the Dutch Bank".

You do own the value the money represents. But not the actual money. Just like you don't own your passport, or driver's license.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Mon May 28, 2012 12:11 am UTC
by Ghostbear
lutzj wrote:What is the father a victim of? Circumstance? There were many things he could have done to prevent this whole situation that he failed to do. He put his son at risk of drowning and other people at risk of being hit by his car. The only other place we could possibly assign blame is with the child, but the child's actions are still the responsibility of his parents. I don't see how your analogies to victim-blaming are relevant at all.

I don't understand how you've missed the bit about extra blame every single time so far, how you've missed that I said he's responsible for the event as-is, how I've pointed out that all I highlighted was the act of making it sound trivial to have prevented, and if he failed to prevent it he's obviously incompetent, and how that is what I was calling victim blaming. I really don't know how I can explain it any more clearly, but I would appreciate it if you stopped reading something I didn't say.

Diadem wrote:Physical money is generally still property of the state (or central bank). I suppose the US could be an exception to this rule, but I've never heard of them being one. I don't know who owns Euro coins, but on our old money (Dutch guilders) there was actually a line saying: "Property of the Dutch Bank".

You do own the value the money represents. But not the actual money. Just like you don't own your passport, or driver's license.

I hadn't thought to look at an actual bit of money before, so I just pulled out a $20 bill, and nothing on it indicates that it's the property of anyone else. I know it's illegal to deface currency in the US, and looking into that, there was a case (related to flag burning) where a supreme court justice tried to compare it to laws against defacing currency, notably, that the government is interacting with private property when doing so. The liability associated with the money is ultimately the governments, maybe that's where the idea is coming from?

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Mon May 28, 2012 2:44 am UTC
by Dauric
lutzj wrote:
I already said that saying he bears responsibility for it is fine and not victim blaming. That wasn't what I was focusing on though, it was on the assessment of "He should have just used child safety locks! Dumbass!" -- assuming an special ignorance or incompetence on his behalf for failing to go with an "easy" or "obvious" solution. It's the assigning of extra blame because of that.


Failure to engage child locks, individually, is a weak point against the father here, but: teaching your son how to get out of the car on his own, and then taking him to the river even though he can't swim, and then (apparently) not giving him stern instructions along the lines of "do not leave the car until I do" or "stay away from the river," and then not having a safety measure like child locks in place was irresponsible on his part.


...

At some point parents do have to take the toddler leashes off their kids, and do other things that grant increasing degrees of responsibility to their children. Since last I checked children don't have a status-display embedded in their skulls or an array of LEDs that flash certain codes when the child is ready to take on increasing responsibilities, it's pretty much always an educated guess as to when a child is prepared for certain rights and responsibilities. The father thought his child was responsible enough for that level of trust and guessed wrong.

Secondly, it depends on how old the jeep was. Child-safety locks are a relatively recent thing, my 2000 Frontier doesn't have them. The article doesn't say what year the Jeep is. It's somewhat less than trivial to engage safety features that don't exist in your vehicle.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Mon May 28, 2012 2:58 am UTC
by WalkerRiley
So I guess I'm one of the few whose insurance company sends him two insurance cards....one for the car one for the wallet?

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Mon May 28, 2012 3:08 am UTC
by Dauric
WalkerRiley wrote:So I guess I'm one of the few whose insurance company sends him two insurance cards....one for the car one for the wallet?


Would be nice of the one my insurance company sends for the wallet actually.. I dunno... fit the -standard- size of my wallet instead of being some terribly award size that doesn't really fit even folded.

And it's not like the card is that information dense, it should be able to redesign the card to fit a standard credit/business-card dimensions, but for some reason they don't do that.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Tue May 29, 2012 3:04 pm UTC
by Роберт
WalkerRiley wrote:So I guess I'm one of the few whose insurance company sends him two insurance cards....one for the car one for the wallet?

It wasn't the car he usually drove.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Tue May 29, 2012 3:09 pm UTC
by Chen
Роберт wrote:
WalkerRiley wrote:So I guess I'm one of the few whose insurance company sends him two insurance cards....one for the car one for the wallet?

It wasn't the car he usually drove.


Isn't that irrelevant since he said the insurance WAS in the car? And if he had one in his wallet why would the car he normally drove matter?

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Tue May 29, 2012 3:29 pm UTC
by Роберт
Chen wrote:
Роберт wrote:
WalkerRiley wrote:So I guess I'm one of the few whose insurance company sends him two insurance cards....one for the car one for the wallet?

It wasn't the car he usually drove.


Isn't that irrelevant since he said the insurance WAS in the car? And if he had one in his wallet why would the car he normally drove matter?

His wife or whatever may have had the wallet card in her purse. He may have had the card for the car he usually drove in his wallet. Since there was one in the glovebox, it didn't matter that he didn't have the right card in his wallet.

He wasn't given warning that he would be ticketed for failure to provide proof of insurance. He was asked for proof of insurance, he told them it was in the car, they gave him a ticket.

EDIT: can we talk more about asset forfeiture or forgetting people in waterless temporary holding cells? The "cops being slight jerks" is interesting, but there are many more serious problems.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 4:40 am UTC
by Princess Marzipan
Роберт wrote:EDIT: can we talk more about asset forfeiture or forgetting people in waterless temporary holding cells? The "cops being slight jerks" is interesting, but there are many more serious problems.
I'd say you want SB if you want a focused discussion. This thread is for discussion about actual examples - right now, the example being discussed is the ticketing for drowned insurance papers.

Also, while I agree that this example is far from the most egregious, that doesn't mean it's not worth discussing.

That said, do you have specific cases of asset forfeiture or waterless holding cells you feel would be better for discussion?

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 3:28 pm UTC
by Роберт
Princess Marzipan wrote:
Роберт wrote:EDIT: can we talk more about asset forfeiture or forgetting people in waterless temporary holding cells? The "cops being slight jerks" is interesting, but there are many more serious problems.
I'd say you want SB if you want a focused discussion. This thread is for discussion about actual examples - right now, the example being discussed is the ticketing for drowned insurance papers.

Also, while I agree that this example is far from the most egregious, that doesn't mean it's not worth discussing.

That said, do you have specific cases of asset forfeiture or waterless holding cells you feel would be better for discussion?

Well, it's just I think we've covered everything, and not everyone agrees, so they'll just be talking back and forth indefinitely on that one. But feel free to still talk about it if you have anything interesting to say. It's not like it's "my thread" anyway.

Here's something interesting: an investigation actually done by a third party, instead of an internal investigation. This is encouraging. Police officer indicted on murder charge Kudos for running the investigation in a reasonable manner, instead of doing it a la Walmart de Mexico.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 4:25 pm UTC
by Chen
In addition to the murder charge, the special investigative grand jury indicted the officer on three other counts: malicious shooting into an occupied vehicle, malicious shooting into an occupied vehicle resulting in a death and use of a firearm in commission of a felony.


This seems a little redundant doesn't it? I honestly don't see how you could be guilty of only one of those and not the others.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 4:51 pm UTC
by Arrian
Chen wrote:
In addition to the murder charge, the special investigative grand jury indicted the officer on three other counts: malicious shooting into an occupied vehicle, malicious shooting into an occupied vehicle resulting in a death and use of a firearm in commission of a felony.


This seems a little redundant doesn't it? I honestly don't see how you could be guilty of only one of those and not the others.


That's how the law and order types in government ensure "bad guys" get convicted: They create a whole bunch of redundant crimes based on parts of the larger crime, so if they can't get a conviction for the actual crime, they can at least get convictions for some parts of it. (Caylee's law is an example of this kind of thinking. Everybody "knew" that Casey Anthony was guilty, but the government couldn't prove it beyond a reasonable doubt. So why not create a law that criminalizes otherwise legal activity that also occasionally correlates with criminal activity to guarantee people like her go to jail regardless of whether or not the government can prove the actual crime?) It's handy for forcing plea bargains, as well, "You can plead guilty to this lesser charge of malicious shooting and we'll put you in jail for 5 years, or fight it and we'll charge you with these 18 charges, some of which are bound to stick, and each will land you in jail for at least 10 years."

It strikes me as violating double jeopardy and due process in spirit while adhering to them in letter. But that's more along the lines of prosecutorial misconduct rather than police misconduct.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 5:00 pm UTC
by Chen
Arrian wrote:That's how the law and order types in government ensure "bad guys" get convicted: They create a whole bunch of redundant crimes based on parts of the larger crime, so if they can't get a conviction for the actual crime, they can at least get convictions for some parts of it. (Caylee's law is an example of this kind of thinking. Everybody "knew" that Casey Anthony was guilty, but the government couldn't prove it beyond a reasonable doubt. So why not create a law that criminalizes otherwise legal activity that also occasionally correlates with criminal activity to guarantee people like her go to jail regardless of whether or not the government can prove the actual crime?) It's handy for forcing plea bargains, as well, "You can plead guilty to this lesser charge of malicious shooting and we'll put you in jail for 5 years, or fight it and we'll charge you with these 18 charges, some of which are bound to stick, and each will land you in jail for at least 10 years."

It strikes me as violating double jeopardy and due process in spirit while adhering to them in letter. But that's more along the lines of prosecutorial misconduct rather than police misconduct.


Caylee's law makes sense as in independent law even though its intent was to deal with Casey Anthony. Not reporting a missing child is at least different than murdering them. I fail to see how you can be reasonably charged with basically 1) Killing someone, 2) Shooting someone in a car, 3) Shooting someone in a car and them dying and then 4) shooting while committing a felony. They're all pretty much the exact same crime. But yeah you're right in that its not really the police's fault for this.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 5:36 pm UTC
by Роберт
Chen wrote:Caylee's law makes sense as in independent law even though its intent was to deal with Casey Anthony. Not reporting a missing child is at least different than murdering them. I fail to see how you can be reasonably charged with basically 1) Killing someone, 2) Shooting someone in a car, 3) Shooting someone in a car and them dying and then 4) shooting while committing a felony. They're all pretty much the exact same crime. But yeah you're right in that its not really the police's fault for this.

#4 is intentionally there to make misusing firearms more serious. For example, if you robbed somebody, that's bad. If you used a gun robbing somebody, that's worse.

It does seem a little odd to say that if you murder someone that's bad, and if you use a gun while murdering them, it's worse.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 5:39 pm UTC
by Princess Marzipan
Well maybe if we lock enough criminal cops for four charges against the same individual action, we'll finally get people recognizing how ridiculous the practice is.

I mean, probably not. But maybe.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 6:07 pm UTC
by Dauric
On the face of it multiple related charges seems ridiculous, however consider that an individual charge in the U.S. judicial system is a Boolean (Innocent/Guilty). Using multiple related charges is a sort of "exception handling" to cover multiple variables and/or integer/real/analog values that reality presents us with using nothing but Boolean evaluations (the judicial system only uses Switch/Case statements for determining the penalty).

Consider that if the only charge levied was homicide then if the jury found that the officer wasn't intentionally shooting to kill the driver but to disable the vehicle he'd be off on the homicide charge. Multiple charges cover both circumstances of intent. The charge of shooting in to an occupied vehicle catches the exception where he did shoot in to the vehicle but not with the intent to kill the driver*.

*Again, second and third degree homicide being two separate Boolean evaluations that are determined which the jury can choose from before the jury is even selected. Juries don't get to say "well, your honor, we don't think he was guilty on second-degree, but we're pretty sure he's guilty on third degree, so despite the prosecution never making that third-degree charge we're going to with guilty of third degree", I'm pretty sure that the "shooting in to a vehicle resulting i death" is the prosecution covering their third degree homicide charges.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 7:24 pm UTC
by Chen
I'll grant the firearms one does make sense (makes crimes with guns worse). But the "malicious shooting into an occupied vehicle" and then "malicious shooting into an occupied vehicle causing death" seems fairly redundant with the homicide one, especially the latter. I mean if you maliciously shoot into an occupied car and it results in death I can't see how that's at all different from homicide (mainly because of the malicious part).

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 7:35 pm UTC
by Iulus Cofield
It would be redundant with manslaughter, where the intent is less important. You can shoot maliciously without intent to kill.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Wed May 30, 2012 8:51 pm UTC
by Dauric
it's hard to say what is or isn't really redundant in this case. The article is terribly slim on details as to what actually happened, but this early in the proceedings the prosecution has to be careful about tainting the jury pool with too many details in the press.

Odds are they're just covering their bases, there may be some salient point of the case that is true for one charge and not for another, and we just don't have enough details of the even to know what that is. Understandable of course, we're just random jackasses on Teh Intarwebz, not lawyers involved in the case.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Thu May 31, 2012 1:05 pm UTC
by HungryHobo
Ghostbear wrote:It was victim blaming because of the assumed incompetence on his end that resulted in events. The results are ultimately his responsibility -- admitting such isn't victim blaming. However, saying "It's obvious he could have prevented this by [easy action x], but he didn't. Therefor, he is incompetent." is victim blaming, because it's trivial to make something sound like an easy, effortless course of action that should have been taken instead, when in reality it could very well be what was attempted to do. Humans are clumsy, forgetful, and error prone; any assessment of a situation should take that into account.


What is it with the current scourge of rape associated language like "victim blaming" on here whenever someone wants to shut down the other side in a debate?

Can we get a corolorary to godwins law: as the length of an XKCD debate increases the chances of someone trying to associate their side with rape victims approaches 1.

this isn't victim blaming.

When you have a kid with you you have a duty to take care of it which can include trivial things like using child locks.
if you're in control of a vehicle you have a duty to keep in under your control. the mere fact that people can make mistakes doesn't diminish that.
if you make one of those mistakes with regard to such things then you're breaking the law. tough shit.

he was negligent, possibly in more than one way and engangered not just the child in his care but also people around him. He's not a victim by any meaninful definition of the word though he could have had victims.

That wasn't what I was focusing on though, it was on the assessment of "He should have just used child safety locks! Dumbass!" -- assuming an special ignorance or incompetence on his behalf for failing to go with an "easy" or "obvious" solution. It's the assigning of extra blame because of that.


believe it or not in his position you would have a duty to have already done those obvious things. the very fact that he ended up in such a situation means he already screwed up in something he has a duty to not screw up in. It's easy to be negligent, very easy. so we punish people for being lazy and taking the easy option when they endanger other people.


"He should have just prevented it all with [easy solution]!" is exactly the right response because he should have.

that's how negligence works. If you don't lock the door. if you don't keep your eyes open. if you don't prevent things with an easy and obvious sollution before other people are endangered then you're negligent. when you endanger other people through your own negligence you're not a victim and people are right to blame you.

the act of making it sound trivial to have prevented, and if he failed to prevent it he's obviously incompetent, and how that is what I was calling victim blaming.


Ah so he's a victim of being called negligent. it's all so clear now. and thus blaming him for his negligence is "victim blaming"

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Thu May 31, 2012 1:23 pm UTC
by Ghostbear
HungryHobo wrote:What is it with the current scourge of rape associated language like "victim blaming" on here whenever someone wants to shut down the other side in a debate?

Today's Fun Fact: Victim blaming is a phrase not limited solely to rape discussions! Seriously, wtf? Talk about trying to "shut down the other side in a debate", here you are trying to discredit my entire statement on an appeal to an appeal to emotions. The phrase is applicable to any discussion wherein someone wishes to say that someone is blaming a victim. It's a rather general usage phrase.

HungryHobo wrote:this isn't victim blaming.

When you have a kid with you you have a duty to take care of it which can include trivial things like using child locks.
if you're in control of a vehicle you have a duty to keep in under your control. the mere fact that people can make mistakes doesn't diminish that.
if you make one of those mistakes with regard to such things then you're breaking the law. tough shit.

he was negligent, possibly in more than one way and engangered not just the child in his care but also people around him. He's not a victim by any meaninful definition of the word though he could have had victims.

I feel Dauric has already explained this far better than I, so I'm just going to link to their post and save myself the trouble.

HungryHobo wrote:"He should have just prevented it all with [easy solution]!" is exactly the right response because he should have.

No, it's the response of an ignorant person that has no understanding of how retrospect can cloud our judgement, of someone who is unable to see that your "easy solution" is not always easy. It's just being an armchair general saying "I could have done it better".

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Thu May 31, 2012 2:10 pm UTC
by Zamfir
If this thread can't stay on the already broad topic, I will lock it

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Thu May 31, 2012 9:33 pm UTC
by Роберт
http://www.star-telegram.com/2012/05/28 ... rylink=cpy

TL;DR
Officer responds to wrong address, dogs are present, owner asks officer to stay back until he can control his dogs, officer advances anyway and shoots one of the border collies.

This seems like a pretty bad police policy for dealing with pets, no? I mean, granted some dogs do bite; all the more reason not to put yourself in that situation in the first place.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Thu May 31, 2012 11:31 pm UTC
by folkhero
Mail carriers, gas meter readers, census takers and the like are all able to deal with people's dogs without shooting them. I think police officers should be forced to take classes from some of them to figure out how it's possible to interact with an animal without murdering it.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Thu May 31, 2012 11:48 pm UTC
by Thesh
folkhero wrote:Mail carriers, gas meter readers, census takers and the like are all able to deal with people's dogs without shooting them. I think police officers should be forced to take classes from some of them to figure out how it's possible to interact with an animal without murdering it.


It's not like it's even that difficult. Most dogs bark at people they don't know, and it's very rare that they bite; they almost always keep their distance unless trained otherwise or provoked.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 1:38 pm UTC
by Heisenberg
http://redtape.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012 ... t-mix?lite
msnbc wrote:"Your First Amendment rights can be terminated," yells the Chicago police officer, caught on video right before arresting two journalists outside a Chicago hospital. One, an NBC News photographer, was led away in handcuffs essentially for taking pictures in a public place. He was released only minutes later, but the damage was done. Chicago cops suffered an embarrassing "caught on tape" moment, and civil rights experts who say cops are unfairly cracking down on citizens with cameras had their iconic moment.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 2:14 pm UTC
by Роберт
Heisenberg wrote:http://redtape.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/06/01/11998060-first-amendment-rights-can-be-terminated-when-cops-cameras-dont-mix?lite
msnbc wrote:"Your First Amendment rights can be terminated," yells the Chicago police officer, caught on video right before arresting two journalists outside a Chicago hospital. One, an NBC News photographer, was led away in handcuffs essentially for taking pictures in a public place. He was released only minutes later, but the damage was done. Chicago cops suffered an embarrassing "caught on tape" moment, and civil rights experts who say cops are unfairly cracking down on citizens with cameras had their iconic moment.

I have seen several instances where cops have been caught trying to prevent people from filming them for no good reason and on shaky ground. That one police officer just happened to say "you're first amendment rights can be terminated" which is very quotable.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:08 pm UTC
by Princess Marzipan
It's not so much the quotability, as the REASON that it's so quotable. There's always been an element of shirking the responsibility to work within the restraints of the Bill of Rights (and the rest of the Constitution, but the 1st, 2nd, 4th, and 5th amendments are more relevant to everyday law enforcement than, say, the 19th).

The reason this is so attention-worthy is that this cop is plainly stating, with no equivocation or contorted rationalization, that the 1st Amendment no longer protects citizens. It's disgusting.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 2:53 pm UTC
by emceng
Sigh: http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/31 ... etail.html

I think I would have less of an issue with police misbehavior if they were getting punished appropriately for it. Instead, when they do things that typically result in felony convictions and prison time, they get a slap on the wrist and keep their jobs.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:24 pm UTC
by Princess Marzipan
From the article:
The Civil Service Commission said the Denver manager of safety "failed to prove any extraordinary aggravation" and "also failed to consider (Saunders') mitigating factors."
One mitigating factor is that he's a police officer. You can't expect POLICE OFFICERS to abide by the law, that's just fucking silly.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:09 pm UTC
by Chen
emceng wrote:Sigh: http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/31 ... etail.html

I think I would have less of an issue with police misbehavior if they were getting punished appropriately for it. Instead, when they do things that typically result in felony convictions and prison time, they get a slap on the wrist and keep their jobs.


Drunk driving doesn't normally result in felony convictions OR prison time though. It does seem pretty reasonable to have him fired though. I'm curious as to what line should be drawn with regards to breaking the law and being a police officer. Should ANY break of the law result in them being fired? Seems harsh but on the other hand they're responsible for upholding the law and them breaking it should probably be an indication of them not being capable of upholding it.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:37 pm UTC
by JBJ
According to HuffPost, the Civil Service Commission (the civilian commission which handles disciplinary reviews/appeals) said it should have been a suspension for 38-42 days instead of being fired according to their discipline matrix.

As for the penalty being a slap on the wrist, he got 5 days in jail, $300 fine, and 100 hours community service. That's all within the sentencing guidelines for a first DUI offense. So he didn't get a better deal than what's available to everybody else. Not inclined to attribute this to police misbehavior. He wasn't speeding and drinking on duty and it wasn't in a patrol car. While police are often held to a higher standard, they are still people and capable of being stupid. He did a stupid thing and paid/is paying for it. Don't know his personality, but it might even give him a bit of empathy when he next pulls over a drunk driver. From my experience, the best cops are the ones who used to get in trouble themselves. They know how to distinguish criminal behavior from good people making bad decisions.

Re: Police misbehavior thread

Posted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 7:42 pm UTC
by Iulus Cofield
Then again, he wasn't charged with reckless endangerment for DUI while going at least 80 miles over the speed limit with a passenger. Although, from I what I can determine from a quick google search, that's also not a felony in Colorado.

I have mixed feelings about this. I certainly personally feel that what he did ought to be a fireable offense for a police officer, but on the other hand I think it should be felony convictions that are the standard for dismissal. I just also think reckless endangerment while DUI and at 140 mph should be a felony offense. Under the circumstances, it sounds like it's a miracle that no one got killed.