Police Brutality

Police Brutality

Police work is dangerous. Sometimes police put in situations that excessive force is needed. But, because some officers use these extreme measures in situations when it is not, police brutality occurs. I believe Police brutality needs to be addressed, because it affects every one of us within our society. How can we trust the Police officers who sworn to “serve the public” when they use such excessive force that results in homicide? For those people who feel racism is not a factor in causing the use of excessive force, here is a startling fact.

In Tampa Bay, Florida, five men died while in the custody of the Tampa Bay police Department (C. C. 27). The thing is, the Tampa Bay Police Department is made up of mostly white officers, but of the five men who died, none where white. Four of the five men that died where African Americans, and the other was Mexican. If the incident in Tampa Bay does not show a person racism, this event might. In New York City, an average of seven Latin Americans were killed a year between 1986 to 1989, but in 1990, that number increased greatly.

In that year, twenty-three Latin Americans were killed by police gunfire When asked how he felt about racism being involved in police brutality, Yussuf Naimkly of the University of Regina commented: “Excessive police force against blacks has always been tolerated, because as formally enslaved minority African Americans are trapped in a cultural context specifically designed to inhibit their development and thus minimize their threat to white hegemony” (C. C. 72) Another shocking incident of police brutality occurred in Reynoldsburg, Ohio.

A group of offices named themselves “S. N. A. T. ” squad. This acronym stood for “Special Nigger Arrest Team” and they made it a point to harass African Americans whenever. On May 11, 2009, a deputy in Palmdale, Calif. shot a 15-year-old boy who was playing “cops and robbers” with a toy gun. The child had been reported to police as someone riding a bicycle and brandishing a weapon. When police responded, they ordered the boy to drop the weapon. When he failed to drop the toy, a deputy fired and shot him in the upper body. Twenty-one-year-old Patrick

Lee was allegedly “acting strangely” outside a nightclub in 2005 when he was tasered by police 19 times, sprayed with pepper spray and beaten with police batons for reportedly resisting arrest and died. Lee’s cause of death was listed as “excited delirium,” a bullshit diagnosis that has been associated with many Taser-related deaths in which drugs were a factor. His parents sued the local government, the officers and Taser international for wrongful death. The case against the local government and Taser International was dismissed and a jury later found that the officers did not use excessive force against Lee.

Lawyers for the officers said that the officers “were doing their best with the tools they were given. ” Five of Birmingham’s finest have been fired for brutally kicking and beating an unconscious suspect in January 2008. The incident was caught by a police dash cam until one of the officers realized they were being recorded and turned it off. The beating happened after a high-speed chase that ended when the suspect flipped his van. Birmingham Police Chief A. C. Roper said the officers may face criminal charges and additional disciplinary action may be taken against supervisors who failed to report the incident to higher-ups.

Roper has directed the Internal Affairs Division track down every supervisor who saw the video of the beating, including those who have since retired. The victim, Anthony Warren, did not know he had been beaten with nightsticks and fists and had assumed he sustained all of his injuries in the crash. He learned he had been brutalized by police when the dash cam video surfaced at his trial in March 2009. In Clay County, Florida, a 56-year-old mentally ill, wheelchair-bound woman died after police shot her 10 times with Taser guns.

Police were called to the home of Emily Delafield because of a disturbance. During a disturbing 911 call before her death, Delafield told the dispatcher she believed she was in danger and that her sister was trying to harm her. Officers say when they arrived, Delafield was in her wheelchair, threatening police and family members with two knives and a hammer. One officer Tasered Delafield nine times for a total of 160 seconds and another officer Tasered the woman once for less than 5 seconds. Delafield’s death was ruled a homicide.

The family of slain teen, Fong Lee, have filed a lawsuit against the Minneapolis police and the officer who killed him. The family has compiled a review of police reports, witness statements and other evidence that support the theory that Fong Lee was unarmed when he was shot by police eight times in 2006 and the gun found near his body was planted there by police. The gun that the officers claim to have found near Fong Lee’s body had been recovered by police from a burglary and was kept as evidence.

The family also alleges in court documents that Minneapolis police “may have tried to deliberately alter history by writing new reports indicating the gun recovered near Fong Lee’s body was not the same gun” that had been recovered after the burglary. The evidence suggests that Minnesota police planted the gun to cover themselves after killing Fong Lee in the street. Police reports indicate that no fingerprints or DNA was found on the weapon. After a May 13, 2009 high-speed car chase south of Los Angeles, Calif. ame to an end and there was nowhere left to run, the suspect gave up and threw himself face-down, spread-eagled on the ground.

Shortly afterwards, a police officer who had been in pursuit is seen on video running up and kicking the suspect in the head. Other officers appeared moments later, hit the complaint suspect in the kidney with a nightstick several times before handcuffing him and taking him into custody. In Galveston, Texas, a 12-year-old girl stepped outside her home to flip the breaker switch for her mother when a blue van stopped outside the home, three men jumped out, grabbed her and called her a prostitute.

When the child screamed for her Dad to help her, the men covered her mouth and beat her in the face and throat. The three men were undercover police officers who happened to be at the wrong house when they grabbed this child. The girl was hospitalized and suffered bruising and ear drum injuries as a result of the incident. Three weeks later, police showed up at the child’s school and arrested her for assaulting a public servant for fighting back when they grabbed her. The judge declared a mistrial in the case on the first day of trial and it was rescheduled.

The child’s mother, Emily Milburn, has filed a lawsuit against the officers. Police brutality is defined as involving the unnecessary and unjustified use of force be that either physical or verbal. Gerald Williams, president of the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) commented, “Let me assure you we arecommitted to a professional level of policing with an emphasis on fairness, humanity, and integrity” (C. C. 168). Other than the police stopping brutality internally, the use of civilian review boards can be used.

These boards must be able to receive all the evidence in a case, ncluding the police audio tapes, in order to make fair judgment if excessive force was used or not. If excessive force is present in cases, these review boards must be able to punish the police or they are almost useless. I believe Police brutality if a serious problem, and it must be stopped. In some cases, where more force is needed than in others, it is still there. Even in areas where police and the use of excessive force is not a huge problem, it must be decreased properly by both the police and the public. Finally, there needs to be rules making sure it never happen again.