The Police Are Rioting
June 19, 2020 10:11 AM   Subscribe

On May 30th, days after the murder of George Floyd, Greg Doucette began collecting videos of the lawlessness and brutality of the police response to the protests. That list passed 500 separate incidents earlier this week, averaging over 30 such incidents per day. [content warning: violence]
posted by mhoye (51 comments total) 71 users marked this as a favorite
500+ videos despite the fact that police are shooting at people for trying to film them. Here is video of police firing at someone who is not protesting, just filming police violence while sitting indoors.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 10:42 AM on June 19, 2020 [25 favorites]

I have a friend, well maybe not anymore, who just joined the police department. He used to be a social worker, up until, like, only two years ago, but now he's sharing cop memes and stories about how it's not the police that need more training, it's the public.

I mean, he's literally saying that public citizens in the USA need to be trained to obey. And he's a 2nd amendment guy! WTF!? And also he's in AA where we talk about humility and gratitude and willingness to change basically all the time.

It's confusing, and maybe he was always a "freedom for me and not for thee" bully and a racist, but man I think they do something to you at the police academy.
posted by Horkus at 10:45 AM on June 19, 2020 [41 favorites]

I await a single instance - a single instance - of allegedly good cops arresting one of their own for assaults on protestors.
posted by jaduncan at 11:04 AM on June 19, 2020 [48 favorites]

Yep, any moment now all the good cops are going to step forward and start putting these assholes in cuffs.


Any moment now...
posted by dazed_one at 11:24 AM on June 19, 2020 [31 favorites]

Hired goons?
posted by furtive at 11:37 AM on June 19, 2020 [3 favorites]

What thugs.
posted by Chickenring at 11:49 AM on June 19, 2020 [6 favorites]

I await a single instance - a single instance - of allegedly good cops arresting one of their own for assaults on protestors- posted by jaduncan

NYPD officer who shoved Brooklyn protester is charged with assault (CBS, June 9, 2020) An NYPD officer who was caught on video violently pushing a protester to the ground last month was hit Tuesday with several criminal charges, including assault. He is the first NYPD officer to be charged for his conduct during the city's ongoing wave of protests for police reform. Vincent D'Andraia, who has been in the NYPD for five years, is charged with misdemeanor assault, criminal mischief, harassment and menacing, the Brooklyn district attorney's office said. The 28-year-old cop was suspended without pay after videos posted on Twitter showed him shoving a woman at a Brooklyn protest on May 29.
posted by Iris Gambol at 12:05 PM on June 19, 2020 [4 favorites]

It's confusing, and maybe he was always a "freedom for me and not for thee" bully and a racist, but man I think they do something to you at the police academy.

Many years ago I had a friend who worked with me in social services and then later became a cop. He was a really stand up guy when I knew him. I remember seeing him shortly after he had finished the academy and him describing it as them breaking cadets down before training them to become police officers. I remember he seemed somewhat traumatized to me. We lost touch shortly thereafter (he ghosted the friendship), but I can still remember the look on his face; it sort of haunts me when I think about it.

I'm fairly certain he went on to join "the fraternity" in the ensuing years.
posted by BigHeartedGuy at 12:07 PM on June 19, 2020 [11 favorites]

Wait, are you looking for a good cop like wrestling an abusive cop to the ground at the scene of the crime?
posted by Iris Gambol at 12:07 PM on June 19, 2020 [1 favorite]

People who claim "there are just a few bad apples" among police forget that the full saying is "one bad apple spoils the barrel" (or "bunch"). Police are trained to an "us vs them" mentality, as if they are soldiers in a war with civilians on the other side.

Some trainers teach that there are 3 types of people in society, wolves, sheep, and sheepdogs, and that they are the sheepdogs in that scenario, protecting sheep (often understood to be white people, or whites who are middle and upper income) from the wolves (often understood to be BIPOC in general, or young men particularly, and sometimes those considered "white trash" as well).

I've seen some people suggesting that "defund the police" is too radical and the slogan and aim should be "demilitarize police", but that's just one part of the toxicity and not remotely enough to make a significant dent in police abuses of power. This whole culture of policing is garbage and needs to be shredded and replaced for us to have a chance to fulfill the promise of "liberty and justice for all".
posted by notashroom at 12:12 PM on June 19, 2020 [16 favorites]

In comparison, coordinated "sick-outs" or "blue flu" sound down-right civil of 'em: Claims of Atlanta police sick out spurs corruption conspiracy (CBS 46)
ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) -- The metro Atlanta community is dealing with mixed emotions after officers in precincts 3, 5, and 6 allegedly called out sick as a form of protest.

After charges were filed against former Atlanta officer Garrett Rolfe and Officer Devin Brosnan in the Rayshard Brooks' case, news of a sick out became the buzz of social media.

Some community members now believe the show of unity is a sign of corruption.

“That just shows the corruption. You know from the bottom up because if you can protest against something like that, I mean how you can protest for something like that?” said protester Nuke Stevens.

While others like protester Kelvin Carey say it’s not that simple.

“I feel like its two different sides. I feel like some officers are trying to back that officer up and some officers are just tired of it. Like, this stuff should not be happening in their backyard, you know what I’m saying,” said Carey.

Residents living near one of the precincts say policing should be reimagined.

“Traffic violations, fender benders, I think there are a lot of jobs that could be handled by other agencies besides the police,” explains Valarie.
More information: A 27-Year-Old Black Man Was Shot And Killed By Police After They Found Him Asleep In A Car At A Wendy's (Buzzfeed News, June 13, 2020)
Rayshard Brooks, 27, was shot and killed by an Atlanta police officer after he was found sleeping in a parked car Friday night — leading to mass protests, the resignation of the police chief, the mayor calling for the cop’s firing, and a grieving community angry at seeing another Black man gunned down by police on video.

“What is it going to take? How many more examples are we going to get?” attorney L. Chris Stewart, who represents Brooks’ four daughters, said. “I’m just tired, and I’m sure everyone is tired of seeing it.”

Just hours after the deadly shooting, protesters flocked to the streets, demanding the arrest of the officer who shot Brooks while the 27-year-old was seen running away.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:13 PM on June 19, 2020 [4 favorites]

Heaven forfend.
Anyway, seems like in the few instances when cops have been charged for assaulting protesters, it's a matter of turning themselves in within a specific time frame; last week's grotty example: Philly Police Inspector Joseph Bologna applauded by fellow officers as he surrenders on charges of assaulting a protester (Philadelphia Inquirer, June 8, 2020) More than 100 officers — some wearing their uniforms — gathered outside of Lodge 5 of the Fraternal Order of Police in a show of support. They applauded Bologna as he left the lodge escorted by his lawyer and police union head John McNesby just after 8:30 a.m. to an SUV waiting to drive him to the 15th Police District. A smaller crowd awaited him outside the district headquarters as he arrived to turn himself in.
posted by Iris Gambol at 12:36 PM on June 19, 2020 [3 favorites]

And when they aren't rioting or having a coordinated sick day in protest after files were charged against a fellow officer who shot and killed a man who was running away from him and another officer, they're siding with local militia. A story in 4 articles:

The attention-grabbing photo, of actual police arresting pretend police, members of the New Mexico Civil Guard, an armed civilian group, after a man is shot at Albuquerque protest (MSN, June 16, 2020)
Recent protests against Oñate statues in New Mexico mirror similar calls to tear down Confederate monuments amid a rise in Black Lives Matter demonstrations following the death of George Floyd, the man killed after a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for more than eight minutes.

In the hours leading up to the violence on Monday, protesters faced off with members of an armed militia that calls itself the New Mexico Civil Guard and counterprotesters toting “All lives matter” signs.

One group sought to tear down a monument to a Oñate, a 16th century despot who massacred indigenous people. The other set out as self-designated protectors of the statue, creating a heavily-armed presence at the park in Albuquerque’s historic Old Town. Aside from a few small scuffles over signs near the monument, the protest had largely been peaceful, though tense at times.

Then, a white man in a blue T-shirt appeared to rile the crowd, according to video obtained by KOB4. People erupted in shouts and the man took a few steps back. A masked protester swung a skateboard and struck him in the shoulder. The man back peddled out of the crowd, but continued to exchange shouts with protesters.

Someone in the video encouraged people to follow the man and get his license plate number. Several people followed him, and one tackled him to the ground. As he tried to stand back up and three people tried to hit him again, the man in blue pulled a gun and fired four shots, striking one man and scattering the crowd.

In a second video that captured the moments following the shooting, the gunman sat in the middle of a road as the New Mexico Civil Guard militia members formed a circle around him. One man carrying a semiautomatic rifle, camouflage fatigues and a military-style helmet kicked the handgun away from the man and stood with his foot on top of the weapon.

Police responded to the scene with tear gas and flash-bang explosives to force the crowd back. Officers detained several members of the militia group, according to reporters and witnesses at the scene. Video showed officers placing the apparent gunman into a cruiser.
Man arrested in shooting of protester near Old Town on Monday (KRQE, June 15, updated June 17, 2020)
APD reports they have arrested 31-year-old Steven Ray Baca in connection to the shooting. Baca is being booked into the Metropolitan Detention Center on a charge of aggravated battery. APD reports the shooting is an active investigation. It remains unclear if Baca was a part of the armed militia group.

“About 30 people call police asking for help even 30 minutes before this had even arised and no cops came onto scene. By the time we ran here, shots fired and a gentlemen fell down. She was in that part and helped him rescue and at that point, a whole swarm of — who are supporters — helped to resuscitate make sure that he was good. He was safe and well,” said one witness.
DA Torrez critical over APD's witness canvassing after Monday night protest (KOB, June 17, 2020)
Bernalillo County District Attorney Raul Torrez is searching for more witnesses who were at a Monday night protest at Tiguex Park that dissolved into chaos after a protester was shot by 31-year-old Steven Baca.

Torrez said the lack of control over the scene poses some big challenges for prosecutors.

After the protest, APD recovered guns, knives and ammunition. Torrez first asked about what weapons were at the scene and who they belonged to.

"We don't have yet a complete inventory from the APD about who collected those items. Were they all put together and assigned ownership to somebody? Did we interview each individual person or did we just gather up weapons?" he asked.

The biggest question that still needs an answer is whether Scott Williams, the shooting victim from Monday night, had a knife in his hand during his confrontation with Steven Baca.

"There was some contention that he was armed. The only item we could see in his possession are the eye glasses falling from him in this moment,” Torrez said.
Yes, it appears that Albuquerque PD either did a poor job of collecting information to understand what happened, when they weren't there to prevent an actual violent crime, where there were numerous armed civilians. But APD officers have recently been documented supporting local armed militia celebrities:

APD investigating meeting with MMA Academy members (June 3, 2020)
The Albuquerque Police Department says a meeting in which officers asked members of Jackson Wink MMA Academy to help them de-escalate protests Monday night was not sanctioned by the department and is under investigation.

The meeting was caught on video and is circulating on social media. It shows champion MMA fighter Jon “Bones” Jones and others talking with several officers outside Jackson Wink in Downtown Albuquerque.

“We are investigating the circumstances that led to that meeting,” APD spokesman Gilbert Gallegos said in an email.

Gallegos said APD wants to “discourage groups, regardless of their intentions, from attempting to engage in a public safety role during protests and large gatherings.”

He noted that they aren’t trained and are “more likely to escalate tensions if they are carrying firearms and dressed like military or law enforcement officers.” Gallegos added that APD officers are trained and use de-escalation techniques to avoid confrontation.

He did not identify any of the officers in the video or say if any of them has been disciplined or placed on leave.
In the video, an officer is seen telling the civilians that they may be able to help de-escalate tensions with protesters.

“Take care of each other, and take care of the people in Albuquerque,” the officer says. “Some of these guys are dummies … I’m sure you guys can de-escalate just by talking to them. Obviously, with us in uniform, they think of us a little bit different.

“Obviously, if you guys see things getting out of hand, just give us a holler,” the officer continued. “… Don’t put yourself in a tricky spot.”
Yes, the unidentified, armed civilians are totally more trustworthy than the police with their (very limited) training. While Jones may have been successful de-escalating one confrontation, if his goal is protecting businesses, he and others with him are acting as volunteer security guards, and there are rules for that kind of thing.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:42 PM on June 19, 2020 [8 favorites]

In comparison, coordinated "sick-outs" or "blue flu" sound down-right civil of 'em

Rumors floating around reddit that the NYPD is planning this for July 4. Anecdotally they're already not responding to some things.
posted by schadenfrau at 12:52 PM on June 19, 2020

I await a single instance - a single instance - of allegedly good cops arresting one of their own for assaults on protestors- posted by jaduncan

NYPD officer who shoved Brooklyn protester is charged with assault (CBS, June 9, 2020)

He was not arrested by fellow police officers.

He was charged by the District Attorney's Office (and was released without bail). I presume he turned himself in but I can find no mention of it nor where he spend the week or so between the act and the bond hearing.
posted by srboisvert at 12:58 PM on June 19, 2020 [12 favorites]

schadenfrau: Rumors floating around reddit that the NYPD is planning this ["blue flu"] for July 4. Anecdotally they're already not responding to some things.

At this point, we could just call this NYPD's Summer Reckoning Break. This happened last August, after Officer Daniel Pantaleo was fired by NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill on Aug. 19 over his role in the fatal takedown of Staten Island cigarette peddler Eric Garner (NY Post). As John Oliver said recently on Last Week Tonight, in a segment on policing, "if you lived in New York City at the time, you probably don't remember this as the time that the city devolved into chaos, because it didn't ... making you wonder whether all those arrests were in the interest of public safety at all."

Right now, I'd be happy if they stopped rolling through historically Black neighborhoods, playing the ice cream truck jingle with a racist history, and showing up in force, in full riot gear, tackling and aggressively detaining protesters (Atlas Obscura, June 16, 2020).

All this shit put together, I don't see how cops can imagine that any of this is helping their cause. I want to believe this is some shitty last gasp of modern militarization of police, but I realize it won't lead to a national overhaul. There are a lot of good reforms starting now, but it's jurisdiction by jurisdiction. Of course, nothing will happen on the national level under the current landfill fire of an administration, but I also hope that this motivates people to get out and vote, and get others to vote.
posted by filthy light thief at 1:22 PM on June 19, 2020 [10 favorites]

I've been saying all along, "EVERY riot begins when the police start firing rifles and grenades are unarmed non-combatants. When the police break down and stop obeying the law, why should anyone obey they law? And that's when the rioting and looting begin.

Anecdotally they're already not responding to some things.

Nothing new. Public Enemy's 911 is a Joke was written 30 years ago.

I await a single instance - a single instance - of allegedly good cops arresting one of their own for assaults on protestors

In NYS, we could add an A-level felony to "Official Misconduct" for any officer -- having probable cause to believe another officer has committed a crime -- to fail in their duty to effect an arrest. 25 to life.
posted by mikelieman at 1:32 PM on June 19, 2020 [15 favorites]

Nothing new. Public Enemy's 911 is a Joke was written 30 years ago.

And Jello and the boys's take on this is going on 40 now.

Police can riot all they please!

'Twas ever thus.
posted by delfin at 2:14 PM on June 19, 2020 [6 favorites]

Wait, are you looking for a good cop like wrestling an abusive cop to the ground at the scene of the crime?

For now, I'd settle for just not needing to be shamed into action by a video seen by millions and a public outcry.

My standards increase once the baby steps are accomplished.
posted by ctmf at 2:23 PM on June 19, 2020 [3 favorites]

One of the most egregious parts of this is that the police are (obviously, flagrantly) targeting journalists and other peaceful citizens recording their actions.
posted by mhoye at 2:40 PM on June 19, 2020 [9 favorites]

There's video this week of an officer in tears because her Egg McMuffin was late. She says she fears for her life.

These are the people that are given a gun and told to go out into the streets. They always, ALWAYS "fear for their life." How stressful it must be, to be that afraid of everything all the time.

The whole institution needs to go. This is a failure on so many levels.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 3:17 PM on June 19, 2020 [18 favorites]

Whatever their wealth or fame, the former group is subject to the police, but not protected by them; whatever their lack of wealth, the latter is protected by the police, but not subject to them.

Which is the famous conservative mantra, roughly paraphrased, and Carillion's quote above summarizes the situation perfectly. The entire movement that conservatives have championed for decades, that talk radio brought into full-throated mainstream existence, and that Trump co-opted for his own purposes is based around one authoritarian premise; a certain kind of person deserves rights, protection and authority, and all other kinds do not.

The fabled Silent Majority and the hardhats of the sixties supported violent crackdowns on those who opposed the existing dominant social order, largely because those people and those they allied with were not represented by it. It is no mistake that Trump's rhetoric echoes these Nixonian slogans, because he is relying upon the same rump of America to get him reelected. And it is no mistake that the shallow thinkers of America support the same thing today, because they have been screamed at for decades that THEY (insert your favorite not-them group here) stole what is rightfully theirs.

This is the social order that police are there to defend. Some more violently and distastefully than others, but all are complicit to some degree.
posted by delfin at 3:41 PM on June 19, 2020 [5 favorites]

Some trainers teach that there are 3 types of people in society, wolves, sheep, and sheepdogs, and that they are the sheepdogs in that scenario, protecting sheep (often understood to be white people, or whites who are middle and upper income) from the wolves (often understood to be BIPOC in general, or young men particularly, and sometimes those considered "white trash" as well).

On Twitter, @NeolithicSheep (who is an experienced shepherd) had an extensive thread about that idea, starting here:
Have I ever mentioned how much I hate this metaphor?

Number one, a sheepdog is a herding dog. It is not the job of a herding dog to defend the flock from wolves. They aren't built for it. Livestock Guardian Dogs defend the flock.
In response, someone else pointed out
A friend of mine, also a sheep person, said that people who use the "sheep/sheepdogs/wolves" thing have clearly never spent any time around actual sheep, or sheepdogs, or wolves, because NONE of them behave like that essay claims they do.
posted by Lexica at 3:51 PM on June 19, 2020 [15 favorites]

I remember seeing him shortly after he had finished the academy and him describing it as them breaking cadets down before training them to become police officers.

This is the standard model of training in military organizations, where the goal is to have soldiers who obey orders instantly, without question, and rely on their training in combat. I do not think these are qualities that policemen should exhibit. It's apparent that they are being trained to regard ordinary non-cop citizens as others, whose needs are secondary to those of the police subculture. That's all of us, and POC are seen as The Problem, to be dealt with as enemies. When some cop says the public needs more training, not the police, it's clear they think it's our job to obey the police instantly and without question, regardless of the legality of their orders.

This all has to change.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:59 PM on June 19, 2020 [13 favorites]

Another thing missing from the usual presentation of the wolves/sheepdogs/sheep metaphor, even if we accept that the person who created the metaphor should have been talking about livestock guardian dogs rather than herding dogs, is that the guardians aren't there primarily for the benefit of the sheep they guard. The well-being of the sheep is a secondary benefit, the guardians are principally there to protect the property rights of owners who wish to enforce their exclusive right to shear and eat the sheep.

Hmmm.. on second thought, maybe it's not that bad a metaphor after all..
posted by Nerd of the North at 4:40 PM on June 19, 2020 [17 favorites]

Wait, are you looking for a good cop like wrestling an abusive cop to the ground at the scene of the crime?

Stopping a criminal act even when the act is being done by someone else in uniform? Yes. It doesn't have to be by force, but yes.

I will remind you that we have recently seen several police directly refuse to intervene whilst a policeman strangled a Black man until death. I expect more than that - a major part of the justification for quasi-military policing is that they have the power to not only investigate but prevent and disrupt suspected crimes as they occur.

Excessive force is force that is not legally justified, and unauthorised force is criminal. A crime is still a crime when another officer does it, and a fellow officer should absolutely arrest them for it and/or prevent it from happening to protect the victim.

Do you think it unreasonable to believe that?
posted by jaduncan at 4:49 PM on June 19, 2020 [9 favorites]

Any sheepdog who killed that many sheep would be put down.
posted by emjaybee at 4:50 PM on June 19, 2020 [38 favorites]

Excessive force is force that is not legally justified, and unauthorised force is criminal. A crime is still a crime when another officer does it, and a fellow officer should absolutely arrest them for it and/or prevent it from happening to protect the victim.

Do you think it unreasonable to believe that?

A black Buffalo cop stopped another officer’s chokehold. She was fired.
In 2006, Cariol Horne, a black Buffalo police officer, intervened when a white officer, Gregory Kwiatkowski, had a black suspect, David Mack, in a chokehold. Horne jumped on Kwiatkowski’s back to prevent him from harming Mack. In 2008, she was fired from the Buffalo Police Department for her intervention in that case and lost her pension.

Horne, who had been on the force for 19 years, was just one year away from earning her pension. The Buffalo Police Department investigated the incident and its final report said Horne’s actions put her fellow officers in danger.

“The police department didn’t believe her story, and they punished her severely,” Brenda McDuffie, president and CEO of the Buffalo Urban League, told City & State. “She lost her livelihood. I mean, which one of us who has any humanity, seeing someone choked to death, just like those officers (in Minneapolis) who should have said, ‘Get off his neck.’ ... Excessive force is something that we’re finally dealing with as a nation. But we had a woman in our community who stood up and she has suffered greatly.”
It's reasonable to believe that that's how it should be. It's not reasonable to believe that cops will step up against the system when this is what happens when they do.
posted by Lexica at 5:06 PM on June 19, 2020 [41 favorites]

The problem is that you simply can't function as a police officer without at least ignoring or more likely condoning the bad behavior of other officers. If you try to prevent it you won't be an officer for long, with luck because you will be fired or will quit.
The system protects itself. Every current police officer is complicit by design, they have to be so that the system can continue as it is.
If you remove all the truly bad apples, you are still left with everyone else, those who are willing to stand by while wrongdoing happens. I have no confidence that there is a solution that can actually happen.
posted by PennD at 6:51 PM on June 19, 2020 [3 favorites]

Behind the Bastards did the Killology guy.
posted by j_curiouser at 8:31 PM on June 19, 2020 [2 favorites]

honestly, i'd just settle for a good cop gently taking a bad cop into custody in the same fashion with which they take white nationalists into custody.

we don't want more police brutality, after all.

Chris Dorner tried.
posted by They sucked his brains out! at 11:30 PM on June 19, 2020 [3 favorites]

So that is one of the (and possibly the primary) culture changes that needs to occur. Absent that the police aren't really enforcing the law but just punishing groups they dislike. I find it hard to call that policing, particularly since I have a lot of time for Peel's concept of policing by consent. Policing without the consent of the community being policed is more an occupation.

Black lives matter. Enough to even enforce the law when it's Black people being brutalised by police. Enough that their consent and being treated with courtesy and respect matters. It's not really a big ask (it's theoretically already true!), and the fact that it is in practice is an indicator that policing culture needs root and branch reform rather than any piecemeal messing around on the edges. Absent that change the police are effectively white supremacist on the systemic level, both on terms of differing outcomes and the fact that intentional white supremacists are not prevented from using disproportionate force when policing Black communities.

I don't have to respect officers who don't stand against that, and indeed I don't consider them good cops. They are directly enabling a racist system of violent enforcement and extrajudicial punishment, and any officer that won't intervene when that is done is an enabler if not a effective supporter of that. It is absolutely incumbent on them to intervene and for us as a polity to create departmental cultures where interventions can happen.

Equality before the law is important. Protecting all groups equally as people who are having the law enforced against them is a base requirement. Black lives matter, and matter as much as anyone else's. I don't have a solution here, but I can't help but think that defunding the police in favour of funding community investment and interventions from professionals with meaningful internal discipline and conduct monitoring systems is a major part of it.

Black lives matter.
posted by jaduncan at 12:04 AM on June 20, 2020 [8 favorites]

I was thinking about Dorner the other day after watching Dave Chapelle's 8:46, which I recommend BTW. I wonder what would happen if a Dorner would appear in today's climate? Already in 2013 he seemed to have some support in the populace, especially as the LAPD went absolutely apeshit during the manhunt.
posted by Harald74 at 2:43 AM on June 20, 2020 [3 favorites]

Charles Dornier began his killing spree by murdering the daughter of an ex LAPD captain and her fiancee. Let's not pretend that he was fighting for a more just society. I believe that Dornier might have been truthful when he reported abuse by his fellow cops. He might also have just been pissed that a female superior had given him a bad review. Whatever was true and whatever the reason the LAPD fired him, the LAPD was better off without him. Someone who goes on a killing spree to "clear his name" doesn't belong in uniform.
posted by rdr at 6:45 AM on June 20, 2020 [6 favorites]

I wonder if George Orwell ever suspected that the day would come when Big Brother was being watched. Nearly every person carries a recording device. Every instance of brutality is covered from multiple angles. You can’t block, break, or confiscate them all.
posted by caution live frogs at 8:59 AM on June 20, 2020

The last time people started killing police in baton rouge, all of the organizing effort was derailed. All the movement for Alton Sterling got derailed, and byp organizers held public funerals for the police.

So I'm unsure what you mean about "in today's climate" . Killing the people who are cops is not only terrible, it is a distraction from any larger goal of abolishing police as a job, or defunding police
posted by eustatic at 9:10 AM on June 20, 2020

A guy killed cops in Dallas during a protest In 2016 and he clearly did not become our Eric Rudolph.
posted by Selena777 at 4:44 PM on June 20, 2020

I found this recent Lawfare podcast episode with a current cop to be pretty interesting. He has the unique career trajectory of: Coast Guard -> Capital Police -> Air Marshall -> CIA foreign intelligence -> Savanah Georgia beat cop.

A lot of the intelligence work is built on trust and friendliness which he has tried to incorporate into his police work.
posted by mmascolino at 2:43 PM on June 21, 2020

If you haven't seen it yet, entry #596 on Doucette's list:
Columbus, OH: police pepper spray a double amputee, then *disconnect and take his prosthetic legs*

The man *crawled on his hands* to get medical help while a group of protestors rushed the cops to get his legs back
posted by clawsoon at 2:44 PM on June 22, 2020 [5 favorites]

We’ve passed 600.
posted by mhoye at 7:53 PM on June 22, 2020

Man, I wish the T. Greg Doucette police brutality tally was lower (and these are the assaults captured on video, not all incidents), and collected someplace other than Twitter. Columbus police release video after conflicting reports of confrontation with 'double-amputee' protester (The Hill, June 23, 2020) Citizen, police videos show different angles of the incident. Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther said on Tuesday that he was aware of the incident and that the city was looking for more information.
Pro Publica, on NYPD Impunity, June 23, 2020: A recent CCRB [Civilian Complaint Review Board] report focused on police abuse against Black and Latino boys: “Young teens or pre-teens of color were handcuffed, arrested, or held at gunpoint while participating in age-appropriate activities such as running, playing with friends, high-fiving, sitting on a stoop, or carrying a backpack.” [...] The report flagged a few other troubling patterns. One was the NYPD not notifying parents of arrests. Another was children being held for running from plainclothes officers. [...]

The CCRB assiduously logs all complaints it gets against the police, about 7,000 per year. But actually investigating them, let alone meting out discipline, is a different matter. The NYPD still has control of nearly every step of the process.[...] The CCRB’s monthly report shows investigators have made nearly 1,000 requests for body cam footage that the NYPD hasn’t yet fulfilled. More than 40% of the requests have been pending for at least three months.
Since the pandemic started, the CCRB hasn't been able to interview any NYPD officers; officers wouldn't agree to remote interviews. Right now there's a backlog of 1,109 investigations which require officer interviews.
June 2020 Civilian Complaint Review Board Report on Youth and Police, NYC
In the Pro Publica article, journalist Eric Umansky's wife saw a police car hit a child last Halloween, and the NYPD spokesman initially issued a denial ( "I don’t know what your wife saw, he explained, but a police car did not hit a kid."). The journalist then interviewed other witnesses, and his wife's account was corroborated by three other people. Umansky contacted the spokesman again: When I called Baker back, he told me that my wife and the three others were mistaken. The car hadn’t hit the kid. The kid had hit the car. As his statement put it: “One unknown male fled the scene and ran across the hood of a stationary police car.” The NYPD's spokesman, its Director of Media Relations, is Al Baker, "Thirty year journalist: Philadelphia Inquirer, New York Daily News, Newsday, The New York Times." Baker was a crime-beat reporter who served as the NYT's Police Bureau chief (Times link with Q&A from 2008); his dad, Lieutenant Alfred J. Baker, was citywide supervisor in the NYPD Emergency Service Unit (NY Observer).
posted by Iris Gambol at 11:43 AM on June 23, 2020 [4 favorites]

How many other colleagues did these guys previously have racist chitchat with, who didn't report them because it takes something truly egregious to crack cops' no-snitch culture? (And how long do you think the sergeant who reported this is going to last now in the Wilmington PD?)

"North Carolina Police Chief Fires Three Officers Over Racist Comments Caught On Tape"
During the call, Moore used the words "n*****" and "negro" to talk about a woman he arrested. When discussing the arrest, Moore also said "she needed a bullet in her head right then" and complained about an officer who discouraged him from breaking the window of her car.
Later on in the conversation, Piner said he's "ready" for a civil war. According to investigators, Piner said, using the n-word, that "we are just gonna go out and start slaughtering them."

"God I can't wait," Piner is reported to have said.

Piner also said, according to investigators, that he plans to buy an assault rifle and that society needed a civil war to "put 'em back about four or five generations."
According to the department, Piner, Gilmore and Moore confirmed it was their voices captured on video and they did not deny the remarks.
They also denied being racist.
posted by away for regrooving at 11:30 PM on June 25, 2020 [3 favorites]

The investigation document has more, including discussion of cop-killing.
Piner said he knew Michael Scott (Officer Michael Scott) was "bad news" and was a "piece of shit". Piner then says "let's see how his boys take care of him when shit gets rough, see if they don't put a bullet in his head."
Talk of scragging the cops who don't riot against protesters is apparently normal enough that the cop hearing Piner say this doesn't think much of it.
posted by away for regrooving at 11:43 PM on June 25, 2020 [3 favorites]

Talk of scragging the cops who don't riot against protesters is apparently normal enough that the cop hearing Piner say this doesn't think much of it.

If you ever wondered, "Why don't the good cop care about the bad cops making them look bad?", this is the answer. Good Cops get shot dead by friendly fire.
posted by mikelieman at 3:04 AM on June 26, 2020 [3 favorites]

To really understand the significance of the officers in Wilmington being arrested, you need to know the story of the Wilmington massacre and coup of 1898. I grew up in NC and didn't learn this story until I was in my late 20s.
posted by hydropsyche at 3:25 AM on June 26, 2020 [2 favorites]

The whole notion that police officers are constantly "fearing for their life" strikes me as absurd. Most petty criminals (and members of the generally non-criminal public) realize that injuring or killing police is a world of much worse legal shit than they might already be in, and, generally speaking, people don't want to go there. For all but the most extraordinary sorts of police contacts the most likely responses are acquiescence or flight, not violence. (The same aversion to legal risk is why housebreakers and other small-time robbers, more often than not, don't carry guns. B&E and petty larceny are much less serious offenses than armed robbery.)

Statistics, by and large, bear this out. The BJS report Contacts Between the Police and Public, 2015, gives a reasonable baseline of about 53,000,000 contacts (the real number is probably considerably higher, since that measure is only the number of people who have had police contacts, and many people have had multiple contacts). The 2016 BLS fact sheet summarizing on-the-job injuries and fatalities for police officers from 2003 to 2014 indicated that interpersonal violence caused significant injury to about 8400 police officers per year and death to 65. On a per-interaction basis, that's a likelihood of (at most, since there are probably more than 53M interactions) 0.015% risk per interaction of significant injury to the police, or about one injury per 6200 interactions. Death is even less likely, with a generous estimate of 0.00012% likelihood per interaction, or 1 in 815,384. This is minuscule, and most of us probably perform acts with a higher fatality risk on a regular basis.
posted by jackbishop at 9:11 AM on June 27, 2020 [1 favorite]

Law enforcement isn't even in the top 10 most dangerous professions in the US.
posted by Harald74 at 3:37 AM on June 28, 2020 [5 favorites]

Before police were rioting, they were just killing people. This isn't news, but the frequency isn't generally discussed. For example, On The Day George Floyd Died, Police Across The US Shot And Killed At Least Five Other Men. Police in the US have not gone more than two days without fatally shooting someone since 2015. (Buzzfeed News)

After St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson broadcasts names and addresses of people who wrote in in favor of defunding police, then apologized and deleted the post (previously), Hundreds march through CWE (Central West End) on Sunday to demand resignation of Mayor Lyda Krewson, when a couple pointed guns at protestors (The S. Louis American).

So of course, Trump retweets video of armed white couple threatening Black protesters with AR-15 (Salon). Which is all context (and Salon is the source) for this statement from the police:
"Private property!" Mark McCloskey, armed with a rifle he held pointed at his wife in between threatening protesters, repeatedly shouted in the video. "Get out! Private property! Get out!"

"Then call the f*cking cops, you idiot!" a protester shouted. "It's a public street."

The couple's home was recently featured in St. Louis Magazine. It is reportedly valued at $1.15 million. A day after the incident, the couple refused to respond to questions, and their law firm was boarded up.

The couple told police that the protesters broke the gate to enter their private street. St. Louis police told the Post-Dispatch that the couple called 911.

"The group began yelling obscenities and threats of harm to both victims," police said. "When the victims observed multiple subjects who were armed, they then armed themselves and contacted police."

The crowd of protesters continued to march onward after the altercation.

Police are investigating the incident. St. Louis prosecutor Kimberly Gardner on Monday said she was "alarmed at the events that occurred over the weekend where peaceful protestors were met by guns and a violent assault."

"We must protect the right to peacefully protest, and any attempt to chill it through intimidation or threat of deadly force will not be tolerated," she said. "Make no mistake: We will not tolerate the use of force against those exercising their First Amendment rights and will use the full power of Missouri law to hold people accountable."
St. Louis police listed the armed white people as "victims," but St. Louis prosecutor Kimberly Gardner sided with the peaceful protestors, whose goal was not these fragile, white people, but the (Democratic) mayor, who happened to live in the same neighborhood.

To rephrase someone else's phrase: if you celebrate the second amendment and don't stand for the first amendment, you don't care about the constitution, you're just a gun nut.
posted by filthy light thief at 2:56 PM on June 30, 2020 [8 favorites]

Law enforcement isn't even in the top 10 most dangerous professions in the US.

If you look past the rankings into the data Police don't have a per 100K rating and so won't appear on the top 10 per 100K rankings.
posted by Mitheral at 1:49 PM on July 2, 2020

posted by mhoye at 5:08 PM on July 2, 2020

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