It's like de ja vu all over again.

ps, thank you SPD for giving me an opportunity to use my second favorite redundant phrase, #1 being "it's a win/win for everybody."
Like you have a solution, Dominic.
this is a way less fun poll than the loud sexy noises one.
Seattle sucks. It is full of wimpy white libtards who grovel before and kiss the asses of black thugs.

Black males ages 14 - 55 make up less than 3% of Seattle's population, but over half of all murders in Seattle annually are committed by black males in that age group.
Society should really not have a problem with law enforcement throwing a good kick into a defenseless perp every once in a while. You want your law enforcement to be a bit scary and since that job attracts aggressive people anyway it's better they take it out on a criminal instead on their wife or something. The problem in this case was that the "crime" was related to the drug war and cops shouldn't be setting up wasteful stings to catch street buys in the first place. The cop should be fired.
Everyone call the mayor's office at (206) 684-4000. The city's contract with the Seattle Police Guild union expires on on 12/31/2010 and a new one has NOT been signed yet. Insist on civilian disciplinary oversight over the SPD to give the OPA actual teeth.

Failing that and failing things cleaning up, perhaps a city initiative that would bar the city from signing any future contracts that lack such teeth. If McGinn and Burgess won't do something, the city could always take that decision making ability out of their hands or their successors.
Police are thugs by charter. Training people to leave behind their humanity and become a tight-knit gang of violence machines and then expecting them to give half a fuck about the people they lie and claim they serve is laughable. Their priorities are, always have been, and always will be the same as any other street gang:
1. Take care of your own (other police in this case).
2. Beat the shit out of everybody else.
In that order. That's why no amount of inquest or reform will change a damn thing.
The reason I don't think anything is going to come of the investigation is because I don't think Diaz thinks there's a problem. These are all isolated incidents. SPD has the institutional memory of a frog. And, since they are engaged in an unending war with "the scumbags" (amongst whom many of us are numbered as well), it's normal to step across the line once in a while; that's how you check where the line is. This is their reasoning.

The idea that there might be some kind of systematic problem in the force simply will never occur to them. They're expending a huge amount of energy making damn sure it never occurs to them.
#5: The cops who kick "perps" are the same ones who go home and beat their wives and girlfriends. Here in Minneapolis a cop who shot an unarmed kid to death and then planted a gun on him got a medal for the killing, but later was suspended for guess what? Beating the shit out of his girlfriend.

It's nice to think that scary cops are necessary when you think you will never be at the end of the abuse. But even if you are white, if you ever drive over the speed limit, or roll through a stop sign, or drive after having a couple of beers, or jaywalk... a "scary" cop having a bad day might think you smirked at him when he was writing your ticket, and take you in the long way, and then claim that you "resisted arrest." It happens to people like you, too.

Don't be so smug.
Racism sucks, m'k ...
@8: This may be the result of a systemic problem (bad training, bad hiring, etc.), or it may be a chance string of cops independently making bad decisions.

Either way, if the SPD actually decides to hold officers accountable with meaningful penalties, these incidents would become less common.

Personally, I'm going to give Diaz a chance to do the right thing before I judge whether the SPD can/will improve.
Remember the criticisms of George W. Bush that said that because he is ideologically opposed to government and that governemnt is always the problem and never the solution, that he was the last person who was capable of making government work? Here for example. Or here.

The same thing applies go bombthrowing activists like McGinn. He doesn't believe in the police to begin with so how can you expect someone like that to know how to work the levers of power and make the police bureaucracy function? It's no different than Bush's inability to make FEMA work, or inability to manage the war in Iraq.

A Republican mayor isn't the answer, but it does take a hell of a lot more pragmatism than we've seen this year.
Diaz is saying all technically right things and progressing in the way things should be done. The steps he proposes are the ones needed to take before something can be done to punish this officer.

The larger issue is exactly as @8 states - Diaz, the Council, and others in the City don't see this as a systemic problem. But it is. Real reform won't happen unless these cases are looked at as an institutional problem with the SPD, and in the King County Prosecutor's Office. They work hand in hand.

As troubling as the kicking in this case is what looks like a potential coverup where the SPD mistakenly beats up a kid they misidentified as a "perp", and then when they figure that out, they arrest and accuse HIM of assault to cover up their actions, and also release info about past crimes committed by a minor. These actions involved much more than that one cop. Everyone involved should be punished.

The Prosecutor will get involved and prosecute this kid based on the made up testimony of the cops, and work to discredit anyone who says differently. We saw this exact thing happen in the DV-One case. I'm sure it's happened many other times. African American males 'assaulting' cops by smashing their faces against a cops fists, or hurting a cops hand while the perp smashed their own face into the pavement and the bottom of a cops shoe.

We definitely need a complete revamp of the Guild's contract. McGinn is the right guy to push for this. The Guild opposed him in the election and he can run and win again without them. He needs to take a strong stance in creating an OPA with real teeth, and finding some way that other cops put on part time desk duty aren't the ones investigating themselves.
@4 hide your wife... hide your kids ..hell hide your husband because they beatin up ERRBODY up in here !…
You're joking right?

This is the same racist, bullshit argument that plenty of bigots make: Black males commit more crimes than any one else, therefor they deserve their subjugation. If you're completely fucking stupid it's easy to not stop and think for 30 more seconds to realize they're committing more crimes because of the continued subjugation of their people. It's a cycle, you dumb shit, one that is destroying whole communities, one that is based in race and class.

In areas without the black population to scapegoat, it's the other lower class races committing the crimes: latinos, asians, whites.

It's a shame people learn how to read and write long before they ever learn to think.
Dave @13, this "larger issue" of systemic police brutality on the part of the SPD is why the WA ACLU was correct in calling for a Justice Department investigation of the force. I have grave doubts that a pollyana city like Seattle will have the political courage to tackle this issue head on which will neccessitate such action by the feds.

Talk about troubling, I recall the SPD beating of Alley-Barnes at the War Room where even though Barnes got a settlement, none of the cops who beat him were prosecuted and one of them was actually promoted!!!!
@11, "a chance string of cops independently making bad decisions" without repurcussions IS a systemic problem. That's what the words "systemic problem" refer to.
Hiding behind official words won't make this go away.
This does need to go to a prosecutor. People who attack cops are held to a higher standard of crime and punishment than those that attack ordinary people. Flip that around, we should be holding cops to a higher standard of behavior.
Part of the problem is a "siege mentality" that sets in when you don't have enough cops to do the job. Seattle has far too low a ratio of police to citizens and the cops know this. They know there isn't backup when "shit goes down" and so they develop an attitude of either never letting themselves be caught in a tight spot even if it means letting the perp go, or they have to fight much harder to keep the scumbags in line. If the cops don't feel safe enough to do their jobs they're not going to do their jobs well.
Cities like NYC have more cops, more crime, more minorities, and less of an issue with this type of abuse when measured per 100,000 residents. Not to say they don't have cops who shoot up a guy leaving his bachelor party for no reason, but it sure seems to be happening a lot around here for a small city with a relatively low crime rate.
@20: SPG: If, as you claim, there are too few cops in Seattle, then how do they find time to deal with that which is their lowest law enforcement priority? Are they just prioritizing inappropriately, or ignoring the law?

Phil, CDC member
Phil, You should occasionally take the blinders off and look at the bigger picture. You take part in an activity that is basically illegal and that puts you in an adversarial position with law enforcement. Fine, I don't really give a crap one way or the other about your pet cause. I do care when we have people who feel that they can break other laws that hurt more people with impunity. I also care when some of the people we pay to enforce the law and protect the people wind up acting just as badly as the criminals. It doesn't do us any good.
This is rambling and way off topic, but the bottom line is that the solution isn't always the obvious one. More police would mean better police. Less drug use would be better too.
Since this is already an old thread, I'll let you have the last word which I expect will be something to the effect of asking if we could have better policing without a drug war, which is a valid question. I suppose taking the other extreme viewpoint is to ask if we'd be better off without recreational drugs? No drugs would equal no drug war, no dealers, no addicts, no cartels, but that genie's out of the bottle so what to do?
SPG, I don't believe we know either other, so please refrain from making uninformed comments about my activities.

Could you please answer the questions I asked you previously? You made some bold claims about staffing levels, and I've presented a reasonable argument to the contrary.

1) If, as you claim, there are too few cops in Seattle, then how do those cops we do have find time to deal with that which is their lowest law enforcement priority? (I'd think that if they're understaffed, then the lowest-priority tasks would be left uncompleted, while higher-priority tasks were attended to.)

2) Given that they clearly have time to attend to that which is -- by law -- their lowest enforcement priority (they are doing so), they must either believe that it is more important to attend to these low-priority tasks than to higher-priority tasks to which they could instead attend, or they are simply ignoring the law which makes arresting adults for cannabis which is intended for personal use their lowest priority. Do you think that they are misdirecting their scarce resources at low-priority tasks, or that they are ignoring the law? (Or something else I haven't thought of?)

As long as SPD staff continue to find time to attend to their lowest-priority duties, it will be hard to convince me (and surely many other people) that they are understaffed. Before we hire more officers, it would make sense to instruct those whom we already employ to stop wasting time and take care of the important law enforcement duties we might otherwise hire someone else to take care of.

Phil, CDC member
You forgot this poll option:
No, and it shouldn't, because cops never do anything wrong.
Judging be comments above, that would get a lot of votes.

Please wait...

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