Saturday, May 16, 2009

Thoughts On This

Saw this video on Fox yesterday and have a hard time deciding how I feel about it.

Police brutality is something we need to diligently guard against.

With that said, I cannot condemn the officer for this. He was in a pressure situation and the man he chased down was a dangerous person.

The attorney for the police officer's association gave a reasonable defense of what happened.

An El Monte police officer was legally justified in kicking a car chase suspect in the head as he was lying on the ground at the end of a televised high-speed pursuit because it was a "distraction blow," a police union attorney said Friday.

Dieter Dammier, attorney for the El Monte Police Officers Assn., said the officer acted within his training and department policy when he delivered the kick.

Richard Rodriguez mixed reaction to a use of force"Unfortunately these things never look good on video. Sometimes officers have to use force when dealing with bad guys," Dammier said. "The officer initially came upon the suspect alone. The suspect hadn't been searched and was a parolee and a gang member."

"The individual officer saw some movement. He feared the parolee might have a weapon or be about to get up. So the officer did what is known as a distraction blow. It wasn't designed to hurt the man, just distract him."

El Monte officers, he said, "are trained to deliver a distraction blow to stop a [suspect] doing what they are planning on doing."

We do have to realize that this is an attorney for the police association, he is going to defend the officer no matter what. Also, the high fives hurt his case a little.

This is a man who chose t0 place himself in this position by driving in a dangerous manner though, reaching speeds of 80 miles an hour endangering innocent bystanders. He is a thug and spends his life menacing society. I'm not going to lose much sleep over him being mistreated.

The incident began Wednesday afternoon when gang officers recognized a man they believed was a gang member driving a Toyota. They were trying to determine if the car was stolen when the driver committed an unspecified traffic violation.

Richard Rodriguez sped off, blowing through stop signs and running red lights at speeds reaching 80 mph, department spokesman Lt. Ken Alva said.

While part of me thinks we need to guard against police brutality by punishing officers who act this way, another part of me thinks this man needed a good ass-whipping for acting like he did. Maybe the real crime here is not making sure there are no cameras around. What are your thoughts?

Source of video

Source of article


Being Right said...

You are right my friend, there as been a big increase in Police brutality the past few years.

Mustang said...

Police officers are guardians of our communities. It is a difficult job, and not suitable for everyone. Part of the determination whether an individual is suitable to become a police officer is how he or she manages anger, how clearly they think under pressure, whether they are able to discern “reasonable force” in every single situation. In this case, the police officer made a big mistake and because of that, there are now questions about his suitability to “protect and serve.” I think it is a question that some one in authority must ask, and the answer will lead decision makers to the proper “official reaction” to the event. He did break the law by committing battery upon a man who had already “given up.” The next and larger question is, if society intends to be intolerant of criminal behavior, must it be equally intolerant of criminal behavior from police officials?

Greywolfe said...

See, I'm of two minds about this... If he had continued to beat the man as he was down, that would have been wrong. If his fellow cops had jumped in and beat him while others watched, that too would have been wrong.

However, after a prolonged high speed chase, and foot race, this example of de-evolution needed someone to "tap his forward assist". When firing an M-16, sometimes the bolt doesn't ride forward, locking the round in right. You have to tap the button on the side of the weapon to seat it properly. Sometimes in an idiots mind the thinking part of the mind doesn't seat right either. Tapping his forward assist tends to show them the error of their ways.

This little love tap he recieved surely made him disregard any ideas he had of doing further stupid maneuvers.

Flavor Country said...

As a strong supporter of law enforcement, I do understand that adrenaline takes over your emotions at times when normally you would not have thought of doing so.

That being said I can't really justify why the officer kicked him, didn't make much sense. That lawyers reason didn't hold water.

Things like this only weaken relationships and strengthen arguments of those who live certain communities where police brutality complaints are high.

I do think some sort of reprimand is in order but not severe. We all are human and hence are not perfect.

LomaAlta said...

I think kicking the criminal while he was down is wrong.

However, I would support using deadly force on fleeing felons in a car chace where loss of innocent lives in traffic has a high possibility.

Chuck said...

These comments are kind of where I come down. We can't let the police act as vigilantes. With that said, I still believe the little cockroach deserved the kick. I see everyone of these guys as endangering my children because this could be anytown and they could be on the sidewalk while this moron is careening down the street out of control.

He made his decision, let him live with it. This is part of the problem with society in that people do not have to live with their choices. And yes, the same should have to apply to the officer. He kicked the man, he has to face consequences.

I feel we should have severe punishment for fleeing from the police. From attempted to murder if no one dies to murder if they do. We had an elderly couple killed in Grand Rapids in this scenario. Guess who got the blame? The police for pursuing the man. I think it should be clear cut, you flee, you kill someone, you go to prison for murder.

I am with LomaAlta, once you have gone down this road, so to speak, you are fair game. I have always thought that if they could end these pursuits without endangering innocent bystanders, any means available is on the table.

mksviews said...

I don't care if that officer kicked the shit out of him. That POS ran from the law and could have killed many, many people.

If we want to prosecute that officer for doing just that, then we are effectively saying, it's alright to run from the law for as long as you want and to do as you please while you're at it. That and we all can resort to fending for ourselves when the cops all resign and tell us to do a better job.

I'd like to see anyone chase some dangerous POS for mile after mile and then pull out the feather duster when he choses to give up. I'm sick and tired about the criminals rights, that's all people seem to care about these days.

shoprat said...

Dealing with dangerous criminals by police officers is a no win situation. Deal with them properly and it's police brutality. Handle them with kid gloves and the bad guys win.

Bryan said...

It appears the officer was alone with the criminal for about 7 seconds. I can see the kick as a maneuver to diminish the criminals thinking process and his physical ability for a surprise move.

I wonder how many officers have let their guard down when a criminal appeared compliant and suffered the consequences.

On the other hand, there is a possibility that when the police officer first saw the criminal positioned on the ground, he could have held his distance until back up came, and then approached with authoritative commands and warnings.

However, some opportunities need to be seized immediately. A delay could have allowed the criminal to run again and maybe take a hostage along his way or attempt suicide by cop.

But then again...

Chuck said...

MK, while I am not comfortable with the police acting this way, like I said in the post, I'm not going to lose sleep over the little cockroach getting a kick to the head

Shoprat, they have a tough job. I work with the police, I see what kind of crap they deal with.

Bryan, welcome and thanks for stopping by. You summed it up well, it's not a clear cut issue.

Caladan said...

Police officers catch too much flak for just doing their job. Some individuals can go too far, but cops in a city like that deal with potentially life threatening situations everyday. Can anyone blame them if that don't want to wait until some thug shoots them before they take action? There are enough people that would attack police, just because they are police, just because they enforce the law.