NYC asks federal court to approve mass arrests of protesters

Monday, December 22, 2014

Good evening:

With our nation in crisis regarding the epidemic of police killings of innocent unarmed citizens, most of whom are young black males, including Michael Brown, John Crawford, Tamir Rice and Eric Garner, to mention a few, the NYPD police union president Patrick Lynch pushed back hard on Saturday against people who protest against the killings. In classic right wing nonsequitur fashion, he blamed the predominantly peaceful protesters, Mayor De Blasio and President Obama for the ambush murders of two NYPD officers sitting in a parked patrol vehicle in Brooklyn on Saturday afternoon. Never mind that the killer was not involved in any of the protests and apparently decided to bag two cops after shooting his ex-girlfriend in the abdomen.

Terrell Jermaine Starr of Alternet reports,

It was just hours after officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos were shot and killed by a lone gunman, when further inflamed tensions between the police and the minority community during a shockingly divisive and incendiary speech to the media.

“There’s blood on many hands tonight,” Lynch said. “Those that incited violence on the street under the guise of protests that tried to tear down what New York City police officers did everyday. We tried to warn, ‘It must not go on. It cannot be tolerated.’ That blood on the hands starts on the steps of City Hall in the office of the mayor [Bill de Blasio]. When these funerals are over, those responsible will be called on the carpet and held accountable.”

Fortunately, some cooler heads are attempting today to pull back from the abyss. However, the NYPD continues to rattle the saber as the NYC Law Department will be attempting to persuade the Second Circuit Court of Appeals sitting en banc to reverse an earlier decision by a three judge panel that held the NYPD had violated Occupy Wall Street protester’s First Amendment rights to freedom of speech and freedom of assembly and their Fourth Amendment rights to privacy by making mass arrests without individualized probable cause.

The City is arguing in its legal brief that the three judge panel’s “decision will frustrate, not further, the work of police attempting to facilitate peaceful demonstrations while ensuring both the safety of demonstrators and those among whom demonstrations are staged.” This argument is ridiculous because the Fourth Amendment specifically states that police cannot arrest a person without probable cause to believe he or she committed a crime. Police are also prohibited from entrapping law abiding citizens into committing crimes they did not intend to commit. In this case, officers from the NYPD entrapped Occupy Wall Street protesters by leading and escorting them onto the Brooklyn Bridge only to arrest them en masse for violating an order not to go on the bridge that no one heard.

Steven Rosenfeld of Alternet reports,

“This is the most significant and most defining legal case on protesters’ rights in the last 40 years, since the mass arrests of May Day 1970,” said Carl Messineo, Partnership for Civil Justice Fund legal director, which represented the protesters. “Mayor de Blasio seeks the authority to arrest today’s protesters in the same manner Mayor Bloomberg falsely arrested Occupy Wall Street protesters by the hundreds.”

Seeking to legitimize a practice of widespread false arrests by entrapping protesters is an egregious Fourth Amendment violation that deserves condemnation. This is no way to calm troubled waters. Instead it’s yet another reason, as if we needed one, to increase the protests.

Obviously, the NYPD doesn’t get it.

77 Responses to NYC asks federal court to approve mass arrests of protesters

  1. MDX says:

    Maybe singing along with Peter and Bob:

  2. MDX says:

    Maybe Joe is, right now, sharing some collie with Jacob.

  3. Malisha says:

    Black Eyed Blues, according to the late Joe Cocker.

  4. Malisha says:

    What’s with the “fresh” killing of Antonio Martin in Missouri? The cops said he was armed but the cops also appear to have turned off their body cameras! Did they “find” a gun that they claim he had?

  5. lyn says:

    Prof Fred, trying to make a donation via my debit card but that is not working on the donate site. Hope it can be fixed. Merry Xmas.

  6. MDX says:

    I have a suggestion for the community at large. Eric Garner said something else that, in my opinion, needs repeating:

    “This shit ends today”.

    I will re-post this quote:

    The law was made for one thing alone, for the exploitation of those who don’t understand it, or are prevented by naked misery from obeying it.

    Bertolt Brecht

    Eric Garner was a poor man who was hustling cigarettes in order to provide for his family and the police were rousting him. Why could they just not let it go?

    “The children crying for hunger and I-man a suffer
    So you’ve got to see, it’s just collie that feeds me
    Fifty cents a stick, and a dollar a quarter
    That’s what keeps me alive, me and my two kids and wife
    So give me a chance sir, a make me gwaan little faster
    Just let me pass through, and Jah will bless you…”

    As Christmas approaches, I feel very sad about the lack of empathy and humanity in our nation.

    • Sleuth says:

      MDX,

      I feel ya. This tune is so right on time, and so true.

      [““This shit ends today”.]

      I believe there is more to the story of Eric Garner than what is being told. I friend recently told me he either read it on the web or saw it TV, that the cop who put Eric in the choke hold had a vendetta against him. Something about Eric and a Puerto Rican man witnessing the officer commit some illegal acts against a man.

      I know the mood around the country is kind of sorrowful with all that has gone on these past few weeks, nevertheless, keep your chin up.

      I wish you and your family a safe, and wonderful Christmas.

      • MDX says:

        Thank you, sir!

        I can see there being “more” to this Garner story based on the behavior of his daughter. I mean he must have been a good father.

        And Panteleo cost NYC some money for making two African American men drop their pants in public so he could handle their “stuff”.

        That kind of act is the mark of a man who likes to use power to abuse people.

    • Yes, it’s soul killing evil madness.

  7. Sleuth says:

    The continuation of the Jonny Gammage story.

    And prosecutor, Chris Conrad got his too. (A MUST READ)

    http://triblive.com/news/adminpage/4420712-74/conrad-police-attorney#axzz3MoY0KMqU

    http://old.post-gazette.com/regionstate/19990213gammage3.asp

    FERGUSTAN, Missouri could have sure used a District Attorney like Stephen A. Zappala, Jr. These cops are definitely “batchit crazy”! They must be kin to those batass LA cops who attempted to murder Rodney King.

    In the words of the late Tommy Wrenn, “George Wallace (the late former Alabama Governor) was a dynamic expression of the mental derangement of (some) white people”, [Spike Lee’s documentary, “Four Little Girls”]

    • bettykath says:

      thanks for the update.

      • Sleuth says:

        No, thank you for bringing to my attention. I really appreciate it.

        I don’t know if it’s my computer or the moderation queque, but some of my posts aren’t coming through. Anyway, I’ve posted some of the story just below your original post.

        And just below this one, the remainder of the story, specifically, the outcomes of Chris Conrad, the prosecutor, and Ofc. John Vojtas. Talk about karma, my, my, my.

        In the meantime, wishing you and your family a wonderful and safe Christmas. B

  8. Sleuth says:

    Professor,

    I commented on your post regarding Charlie Pierce, however it did not post.

    Can you please check to see if its hung in moderation? Thanks.

  9. Sleuth says:

    Sophia33, thank you. Consider Jordan Baker’s name added to the list. LES’T WE FORGET!

    Oh my goodness! Not again. It seems as though the local governments are succeeding in circumventing the law by forgoing the petit jury route for the sake of wayward cops.

  10. Sophia33 says:

    Sleuth add Jordan Baker to the list. There was a no bill announced today on the off duty police officer who said he fit the description of a robbery suspect and killed him. The officer’s story is that Jordan Baker ran from him, then turned around charged him and reached for his waistband where he DID NOT have a gun. The officer was working off duty as a mall security. As someone said on Huffington Post, we need to have an extensive study on what is in the African American Male DNA that causes them to charge people who are shooting bullets at them and that causes them to reach in their waistbands for guns that they are not in possession of. We need to study why these men run first and then turn around and start charging the person that they are running from. This will make a fascinating study. And the waistband thing? Why reach in your waistband when you have nothing there? I would like to take the study further and wonder why the officers are almost never injured.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/12/23/jordan-baker-no-indictment_n_6373988.html#comments

  11. Here’s another option for convening a new grand jury to investigate the Michael Brown shooting. Judd Legum at Think Progress writes that Presiding Judge Maura McShane can summon a new grand jury.

    Under Missouri law (MO Rev Stat § 56.110) the presiding judge of the court with criminal jurisdiction — in this case Judge McShane — can appoint another prosecutor if the prosecuting attorney demonstrates a conflict of interest or bias. Courts have interpreted this provision broadly to include “conflicts that reveal themselves through the prosecutor’s conduct in the case.” In State v. Copeland, a 1996 case, a Missouri court replaced the prosecutor because the judge “sensed that [the prosecutor’s] sympathies for [the defendant] may have prevented him from being an effective advocate for the state.” The judge “found the adversarial process to have broken down in that [the prosecutor] appeared to be advocating the defendant’s position.”

  12. Here’s Charlie Pierce,

    It is very simple. If the CIA is insubordinate to the president, whom the country elected, then it is insubordinate to all of us. If the NYPD runs a slow-motion coup against the freely elected mayor of New York, then it is running a slow-motion coup against all the people of New York. There is no exemption from this fundamental truth about the way this country and its system is supposed to work. The military — and its civilian analogues in Langley and in the precinct houses — always is subordinate to the civil power which, no matter how much it may chafe them, means that they always are subordinate to politicians. If we render our torturers superior to the political institutions of the government, and if we render the police superior to the civil power of elected officials, then we essentially have empowered independent standing armies to conduct our wars and enforce our laws, and self-government descends into bloody farce.

  13. Sleuth says:

    WAGING WAR!

  14. Sleuth says:

    WAGING WAR!

    http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=youtube+we're+waging+war&FORM=VIRE1#view=detail&mid=04C2F366EFAB7C103B7504C2F366EFAB7C103B75

    “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places”. ~ Ephesians 6:12

    Their hands are TOO short to box with God.

  15. Malisha says:

    In order to effectuate “trap and arrest,” the police have to commit the crime of “unlawful restraint,” which is actually the legal description of kidnapping.

    • MDX says:

      And that is what the evidence strongly suggested Fogen did.

      I could not, for the life of me, believe how many “legal experts” came to Fogen’s defense and claimed that he was not guilty of unlawful restraint because, in their mind {racist-enabling}, the break between Fogen getting out of the car to go after the “f’r who always gets away” and the end game {he shoots the f’r} created a reasonable doubt as to who started it WTF?????

      Trap and arrest with an option to kill, if the prey resists.

    • I do so agree with both of you (Malisha and MDX). Ferguson protests happened because we still were not – cannot be – past Trayvon’s unpunished murder.

  16. Sleuth says:

    LES’T WE FORGET

    ROLL CALL……………………………………………………

    Sandra Antor**
    Bernard Bailey*
    Carolyn Sue Boetticher*
    Rekia Boyd*
    Michael Brown*
    John Crawford*
    Jordan Davis*
    Amadou Diallo*
    Oscar Grant*
    Israel “Reefa” Hernandez*
    Neville Johnson*
    Rodney King**
    Deosaran Maharaj*
    Trayvon Martin*
    Renisha McBride*
    Arthur McDuffie*
    Vonderrit Myers Jr.*
    Ersula Ore**
    Marlene Pinnock**
    Kajieme Powell*
    Kathryn Johnston, 92 year old great-grandmother
    Tamir Rice*

    And the many unnamed citizens of police brutality and gun violence.

    THEY ARE NO LONGER HERE*

    *Denotes the names of African American citizens who were killed by police officers
    **Denotes victim of police brutality

    This is not an exhaustive list. Please feel free to add additional names.

    • Thank you for posting the list.

      Unfortunately, we probably will not be able to complete it because police departments are not required to report their kills. Less than half of them, including some large city police departments, report their kills to the DOJ/FBI.

      USA Today reports,

      Based on the voluntary data supplied to the FBI, last year’s number of justified homicides by police — 461 — was the highest number recorded in nearly two decades. (Those cases and the ones reported in the years before are not audited after they are submitted to the bureau, and the data has conflicted with other independent measures of fatalities at the hands of police.)

      The actual number probably is twice that.

      • Malisha says:

        Mind you, it is the police themselves who decide to use the label “justifiable.” BTW, if I ever killed somebody, I would consider my act to be quite justifiable.

      • Sleuth says:

        Professor,

        A couple of weeks ago, a friend and I were discussing the very same points you just made. In fact, police department’s don’t just smudge the “kill” stats, but also cases of rape. A woman whose family were visitors in a major city was raped at the hotel where she and her family stayed while on vacation. She reported it, and filed a lawsuit later on.

        It was later discovered, that although she was given a police case number, no report was ever filed. Her story, and those of other victims who stayed at the same hotel, was uncovered by a journalist investigating police deliberate mishandling of reported crimes.

        Just because the powers that “think they” be, want to pretend these victims never existed, or refuse to accept the fact that they are no longer here as result of crimes committed by law enforcement, doesn’t mean we have to. Who will speak up for the victims of the past, present, and future if not us, and the non-violent protestors?

        I posted the names of the victims because it is obvious they (fill in the name) want us to forget these victims ever existed. They want us to “just get along” with the status quo. Some of the victims on the list were murdered more than 20, and 30 years ago, and the death squads continue.

        It is not enough that police officers are murdering American citizens of all colors, but like racer posted earlier, they now want to create a Nazi state. I will not be silenced. I will not shut up. I will not sit still.

        If my 89 year old Jewish friend can step up to the plate and do his part, surely I can. Yep, my 89 year old Jewish friend, along with friends in Cleveland, Ohio, and others located throughout the country, are doing their part to eradicate injustices, and the last bastion of slavery, racism.

        Just like the late officers Liu and Ramos, these victims, for the most part, were minding their own dang business. These victims were more than statistics, or ink on paper. They were somebody’s grandmother, grandfather, great-grandmother, great-grandfather, uncle, aunt, sister, brother, cousin, and friend. THEIR LIVES MATTERED.

        They want us to forget. I will never forget, no more than NYPD will forget their fallen. Everywhere they turn, every time they close their eyes to go to sleep, every time they awake, and eat, and poop, and BREATHE, they will be forced to remember.

        Nevertheless, I pray for peace for the Brinsley, Liu, and Ramos families.

        “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy”. ~ Proverbs 31:8-9

      • Two sides to a story says:

        : {

        • Yeah, it’s certainly depressing.

          But, hey. Why would anyone want to engage in evidence based analysis of a probable major societal problem?

          The Republican mantra has been, “Evidence? We don’t need no stinkin’ evidence ‘cuz we already know everything.”

    • peni4yothot says:

      Tanisha Anderson*
      Ezel Ford*
      Eric Garner*
      Akai Gurley*
      Darrien Hunt*
      Kelly Thomas

    • Motor City Lady says:

      Renisha McBride was not a victim of police brutality; she was murdered by a citizen. Her case is one of the few where justice was served.

      http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/04/us/theodore-wafer-sentenced-in-killing-of-renisha-mcbride.html?_r=0

      • Sleuth says:

        Thank you for pointing that out.

        I am very familiar with Renisha McBride’s story. Her name is listed because she was in fact, a victim of gun violence.

        [And the many unnamed citizens of police brutality and gun violence.]

  17. acemayo says:

    MICHAEL BROWN
    Horrific Racist Song at Charity Event
    ‘AND HE’S DEAD, DEAD MICHAEL BROWN’ [VIDEO]
    http://www.tmz.com/2014/12/23/michael-brown-song-video-dead-police-parody-leroy-brown/

    • Malisha says:

      I think that’s the worst thing I ever read.
      SHAME ON THEM!
      That lodge needs to be shut down!
      That’s exactly how the “Bundt” Lodges got started with their racist, antisemitic drivel in this country, in the 1930s. Mockery generally comes first and then murder. (Of course, we have it a bit reversed where we get the murder first and then the mockery.)

    • Sleuth says:

      From the article:

      [“The lawyer adds, “He’s a goofball who writes funny songs.” We asked why Fishell would sing this in a room full of cops, and the lawyer replied, “He thought the room would get a kick out of it.”]

      Just wondering if LAPD, Richmond PD, FPD, Cleveland PD, NYPD, and police departments across the nation would find it funny, and get a kick out of it if Officer’s _____________ name was substituted for Michael Brown’s.

      This is just one more reason why so many people are anti-police. While police officers, cop apologists, and racists want to blame non-violent protestors, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Attorney General Eric Holder, and President Barack Obama for the deaths of Officers Liu and Ramos, they should be laying the blame where it rightfully belongs, on former LAPD officer Joe Myers, and former federal employee Gary Fishell.

      These racists, pos, fanatics whose despicable actions and behavior may have very well been the final straw for Ismaaiyl Brinsley.

    • racerrodig says:

      That “badass’ policeman this shit for brains is singing about claimed to be scared like a 5 year old.

      Besides being as ignorant a racist as could possible be for even doing this, he has the facts wrong.

      Oh, sure, many songs, like “Bad Boy Leroy Brown” are about a fictitious character, but if you’re going to do a parody at least get it right.

    • MDX says:

      Not only is it repugnant, the song is a window into how divorced this cop-gobbler is from the reality of the African American world – like all his other well reamed sheep friends, he has to use a lame cliche to make his point.

  18. Greg Beasley says:

    The police are getting out of control. Now they are trying to say you don’t have the right to free speech. I hope the Mayor can do something like fire the Chief of Police or whoever is putting out this nonsense regarding him being responsible and also urging the arrests of peaceful protestors.

  19. Sophia33 says:

    The rhetoric of the police union on Saturday showed that they didn’t get it. They are looking at any excuse to create a police state.

  20. racerrodig says:

    The Nazi’s would go to every effort to silence all opposition by arrest and imprisonment. Then mass executions followed and all the while the masses were brainwashed.

    Sounds familiar to me.

    • Malisha says:

      And those who object are criminalized.
      Too predictable — uncanny.
      Rome, Rome, Rome, Rome.

      • Bill Taylor says:

        as i understand present day police policy IF a citizen that brok no law has an officer walk up from behind and grab his arm and that citizen jerks his arm away he may be killed on the spot at the most and at the least he can be beat down handcuffed and face multiple charges for reacting to an ILLEGAL assault and battery by an officer…….and before anybody questions that Eric Garner is proof of that reality…….

        • Malisha says:

          Actually, I think Mike Brown was acting on pure adrenalin when he pulled away and ran from Killson. No matter who has a badge, if somebody grabs you and shoots a gun at you, you run. You pull free and run like Hell. You don’t stand there and say, “Yessir you may kill me Sir YessSir.” They’re trying to brainwash a whole culture to abject obedience regardless of circumstance.

          • Greg Beasley says:

            Plus the media and all the racists keep perpetuating the myth that Brown decided to assault the officer. They automatically believe the officer’s version and then label Brown’s friend as a “thug” and refuse to believe his version of what happened.

            “Take it to a jury they don’t give a damn cause the one that tells the truth is always the policeman.”

          • The media also keeps repeating the false accusation that the 16 eyewitnesses, who said Michael Brown’s hands were up when Wilson killed him, are unworthy of belief because their stories are inconsistent.

            I can’t believe they keep saying that and I can’t believe anybody believes them when they do.

            But they do.

            Which goes to show how stupid racists are.

  21. Malisha says:

    I think the comparison to the rise of Nazi power in Germany is, although somewhat dramatic, not at all off point. If you blame people for protesting the wrongs you do to them, you’re on the way toward that brand of fascism that is hardest to oppose: the “best defense of oppressive offense.” Once your government (local, state or federal) practices it, you’re lost.

  22. Two sides to a story says:

    Oh, I think NYPD “gets it.” It just doesn’t tickle their ideological fancy.

  23. Bill Taylor says:

    somehow the concept of we need to arrest ALL of the protesters to protect the rights of the peaceful ones just doesnt make SENSE?

  24. racerrodig says:

    It seems to me this is pretty much how the Nazi Party got started. If you don’t conform to their line, arrest ’em all.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: