This weekend, police in Brooklyn, New York, busted some folks who were grilling on the sidewalk — which, I didn’t know until reading this New York Daily News article, is illegal. But a “melee” broke out, with several of the parties resisting arrest. Now there are photographs being distributed by a community advocacy group which purport to show a NYPD officer with his arm in an illegal chokehold around a woman, Rosan Miller, who is seven-months pregnant. Keep reading »
The NYPD has finally agreed to ban the confiscation condoms as evidence from people they suspect of being sex workers. With similar measures having been fought for and won in San Francisco and Washington, D.C., this seems like a win for sexual health, right?
Well, sort of. The headlines I keep seeing aren’t actually accurate: “NYPD to stop seizing sex work suspects’ condoms,” “NYPD To Stop Seizing Condoms From Suspects As Evidence Of Prostitution,” etc. This sort of shoddy reporting might mean that the public thinks that condoms as evidence is an issue over and done with, when in fact there is more to do. The policy announced by NYPD Commissioner Bratton bars confiscation of condoms as arrest evidence in prostitution, prostitution in a school zone, and loitering for the purposes of prostitution cases, which is a great start. But it’s not as overarching as the mainstream media seems to think it is. Keep reading »
An as-yet unnamed Boyton Beach, Florida, police officer has been placed on administrative duty after he was caught on camera kicking the legs out from under a handcuffed 13-year-old for “no reason,” and now the child’s parents are planning to file a formal complaint. Kevens Jean Baptiste, 13, was riding the bus to school last Thursday, when he decided to open his window to get some air. Baptiste explained that his asthma was acting up after another classmate sprayed perfume, making it hard for him to breathe. “I was coughing, and my face was turning red and stuff,” Baptise told NBCMiami. “So, I just let down my window.”
When Baptiste refused to comply with the bus driver’s orders to put up his window, the driver pulled over and called the police, who removed Baptiste from the bus and handcuffed him. At least two students on the bus were filming the incident on their cellphones and captured one of the responding officers forcefully grabbing Jean Baptiste by the torso and neck, dragging him to the grass, prompting one child to exclain, “They’ve got Kevens in a choke hold!” In a second, even more disturbing video (above), an officer is seen swiftly approaching Jean Baptiste, kicking his legs out from under him, sending the teen to the ground.
“They can’t do that!” a child on the bus is heard yelling. “I recorded it!” yelled another. Keep reading »
“Shocking and disturbing.” These are the words of Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Chief of Police Cathy Lanier after an officer was arrested on Monday for the production of child pornography by taking nude photos of a 15-year-old girl. Keep reading »
The police have done some pretty disgusting stuff before but this one takes the cake: A woman alleges Haskell, Arkansas, police officer Brandon Carter showed up at her workplace, demanded she show her breasts, and then chased her around the office with a taser when she said “no.” Ashlea Bennet said Carter, who was on-duty, came to her workplace on December 13, 2011, and demanded she show him her boobs. She refused. Carter then allegedly removed the Taser from his belt and threatened to tase her if she didn’t show him her boobs. He then allegedly chased her around her workplace with a taser, ”zapping her repeatedly,” according to the New York Daily News. What is wrong with people?! [New York Daily News, Court House News] [Image of a man with a taser via Shutterstock]
Jonathan Ferrell, 24, a former college football player at Florida A&M University, who is black, was shot to death by police on Saturday after he suffered a major car accident and sought help from a neighbor.
Ferrell crashed his car in suburban Charlotte, North Carolina, around 2:30am Saturday morning. Investigators think he may have had to climb out of his rear window in order to get out of his car; Raw Story reported Ferrell may have had a possible head injury from the accident. He then walked to the nearest house on Reedy Creek Road looking for help and banged on the door repeatedly. The woman who answered the door thought he might be her husband coming home from work; she did not recognize Ferrell and closed the door. According to CNN, she hit her panic alarm and called 911 to report a “breaking and entering.” The Charlotte Observer reported that the Police Chief Rodney Monroe does not believe any threats were made by Ferrell at the door. Keep reading »
The New York City Police Department is infamous for the controversial “stop and frisk” program, critiqued for how it is used for racial profiling. This story, however, is more like stop and grope.
According to NYMag.com, a Brooklyn woman, Latonya Ratcliff, 39, is suing the city after Officer Joseph Jette entered an apartment, where Ratcliff works as a live-in caregiver, to search for guns and ended up sexually assaulting her. During a not-so-routine patdown, Latonya claims officer Jette “cupped her breast and butt,” according to the Post. Then, when questioning Ratcliff alone in the apartment’s bedroom, Officer Jette allegedly picked up a porn DVD. The Post reports that Ratcliff said, “He asked me if I liked these positions and if I wanted to do them with him and I told him no.” Keep reading »
Hayden Carlo was having a bad day. The struggling father of two was pulled over by a Plano, Texas, police officer because he had an expired registration. Carlo told the officer that he couldn’t afford to update his registration, and needed the money to feed his family. The officer was moved by Carlo’s story and struggles, and explained that because he was being videotaped, he was required to write Carlo a ticket. But as the officer handed over the ticket, he managed to sneak something a little extra into the folded up paper — a $100 bill. Keep reading »