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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Police Abuse of Power: Peace Officers need to be held to higher standards, not granted secrecy, immunity and leeway to use violence against the citizenry.

The examples of Violence committed against citizens by peace officers is alarming.

First we need to expose it, and make common knowledge of how pervasive it is.

Then we need to demand of our public officials that this pattern of violence and abuse be corrected so that we may rest assured that all of us, our children, or neighbors, and our communities are not in danger of being abused or even murdered by our police forces.

Here are a few examples of police abuse of power and casual use of violence against the citizenry: 

The fatal beating of Kelly Thomas, a schizophrenic drifter who was allegedly beaten to death by Fullerton, California police officers:

Cops Vs. Cameras: The Killing of Kelly Thomas & The Power of New Media NOTE: Because of violent images, viewer discretion is advised.

Student beaten by cops in College Park, Maryland

Two Officers Indicted In Beating Of Univ. Of Md. Student (includes video clip of beating)

Two officers indicted in Md. college student beating

A step toward justice in UM student beating  

Mace used on Wall Street protesters Both include video of police using mace on non-violent protesters:  (while I don't agree with their politics and desired outcomes, I don't support using this kind of violence against citizens who are exercising their First Amendment rights. 
Neither should you.   

MSNBC Interviews Occupy Wall Street Protester Kelly Heresy

Police crack down on 'Occupy Wall Street' protests

Months after a Connecticut man died shortly after being in the custody of Westerly police, the Connecticut Medical Examiner's Office ruled the death a homicide.

State probes man's death after arrest Ryan O'Loughlin Death Ruled Homicide; Died after Police Custody (with video)

Family alleges man who died was beaten by Westerly PD

Navy veteran's death after arrest in Westerly called homicide

  There are thousands of cases more out there.   Let's support peace officers who want to be Peace Officers by shining a light of day on those officers who abuse the public trust and violate the public's right to be secure and safe in the presence of police "peace" officers.
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Botched Paramilitary Police Raids: An Epidemic of "Isolated Incidents"

"If a widespread pattern of [knock-and-announce] violations were shown . . . there would be reason for grave concern." —Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, in Hudson v. Michigan, June 15, 2006. An interactive map of botched SWAT and paramilitary police raids, released in conjunction with the Cato policy paper "Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Police Raids," by Radley Balko. What does this map mean? How to use this map View Original Map and Database


Death of an innocent. Death or injury of a police officer. Death of a nonviolent offender.
Raid on an innocent suspect. Other examples of paramilitary police excess. Unnecessary raids on doctors and sick people.
The proliferation of SWAT teams, police militarization, and the Drug War have given rise to a dramatic increase in the number of "no-knock" or "quick-knock" raids on suspected drug offenders. Because these raids are often conducted based on tips from notoriously unreliable confidential informants, police sometimes conduct SWAT-style raids on the wrong home, or on the homes of nonviolent, misdemeanor drug users. Such highly-volatile, overly confrontational tactics are bad enough when no one is hurt -- it's difficult to imagine the terror an innocent suspect or family faces when a SWAT team mistakenly breaks down their door in the middle of the night. But even more disturbing are the number of times such "wrong door" raids unnecessarily lead to the injury or death of suspects, bystanders, and police officers. Defenders of SWAT teams and paramilitary tactics say such incidents are isolated and rare. The map above aims to refute that notion.

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