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Category Archives: False Arrest

Video: Memphis airport POLICE and disabled ST. JUDE PATIENT FIGHT

A Memphis International Airport security video shows the June 30, 2015 confrontation between security personnel and Hannah Cohen, a St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital patient, that led Cohen to file a federal lawsuit.

MEMPHIS — A Memphis International Airport security video shows the confrontation between security personnel and Hannah Cohen, a St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital patient, that led Cohen to file a federal lawsuit.

The incident happened on June 30, 2015, when Cohen, 19, and her mother, Shirley, went through security at the Memphis airport. The women were traveling back to their Chattanooga home following treatment at the Memphis-based hospital.

The video, obtained by The Commercial Appeal, shows Cohen speaking with several security agents. When one of the agents tries to detain her, Cohen tries to punch the agent, who then slams her to the floor. She then struggles to break free as the agent tries to handcuff her.

According to the lawsuit, an alarm went off when Hannah went through the security screening. She was described as being impaired from radiation treatment and the removal of a brain tumor. The aggressive cancer treatment left the teen with limited ability to talk, walk, stand, see and hear.

“(She) became disoriented and confused by the warning alarm and the actions of the personnel manning the security checkpoint to try to search her person because of her disability. The security personnel failed to recognize that she was confused because of her obvious disability and was unable to cooperate with the search,” the lawsuit said.

Transportation Security Administration and Memphis International Airport Police Department personnel were manning the checkpoint, according to the lawsuit filed several weeks ago.

Her mother tried repeatedly to tell personnel about Cohen’s brain tumor and disabilities, according to the lawsuit.

Her daughter, who had been under anesthesia the day before, is blind in her left eye and deaf in her left ear, Shirley Cohen said.

Two guards grabbed her daughter from both sides, the mother said.

“It freaked her out,” she told The Commercial Appeal. “They didn’t listen to me at all. When they grabbed her, it scared her, and she was trying to get away from them. The next thing I know, one of them slammed her down on the floor and busted her head open. There was blood everywhere.”

Security personnel arrested Hannah Cohen on allegations she lashed out and hit an officer in the shoulder, chest and face.

She had refused to go through additional screening or leave the checkpoint, an airport police report states. The officer was not injured, according to the report. All charges against Cohen were later dropped, according to the lawsuit.

Shirley Cohen said her daughter had been going to St. Jude for 17 years, which included traveling through the airport many times “without incident ever.”

TSA spokesman Mark Howell and Jerry Brandon, chief of public safety of the Memphis International Airport Police Department, said they could not comment on pending litigation. The Memphis International Airport Police Department is an independent agency, which is not part of the Memphis Police Department or Shelby County Sheriff’s Office.

“At this point, it is alleged, ” Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority president and CEO Scott Brockman said. “Anybody can file anything, and we don’t comment on active litigation. Clearly there are additional facts in this matter, and we won’t comment until we address the litigation.”

Cohen and her mother are suing the airport police, TSA and the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority for damages that include medical expenses, personal injury, emotional injury, pain, suffering and embarrassment. They ask for a “reasonable sum not exceeding $100,000 and costs,” the lawsuit states.

They allege the officers and agents of the TSA and airport police discriminated against Cohen because of her disability and failed to provide reasonable accommodation for screening her. They allege the airport authority failed to properly manage the personnel.

National Guard, DEA, State Police Raid 81-yo Cancer Patient’s Organic Garden to “Protect us

Edgartown, MA — In a gross display of wasted taxpayer dollars, dozens of Massachusetts National Guard personnel, operating under a grant from the DEA, alongside Massachusetts State Police, descended into the backyard of an 81-year-old cancer patient in a raid last week — to protect society from the dangers of his four marijuana plants.

Paul Jackson, 81, of Martha’s Vineyard, grows cannabis to make medicine. His plants, along with several other plants, became the target of law enforcement last week in a crackdown on hardened criminals who’d dare to grow a plant that helps them.

Jackson was in his backyard last Tuesday when plainclothes men and a helicopter descended on his property. With no warrant, and without showing identification, these heroes ripped Jackson’s plants from the ground.

“They just come charging through and start cutting it down,” Jackson said in an interview with the MV Times.

According to the MV Times, Mr. Jackson, a lifelong Islander and renowned organic gardener with over 300 ribbons from the Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Fair, expressed both bewilderment and disgust when he spoke to The Times on Friday.

“I told them they don’t know what they’re doing, they’re destroying it and it could be used for good purposes,” he said. “I know because I went through it before. You wrote about it in The Times. I had the article framed, took it out to show them; I said, ‘This is proof of what it does,’ but they didn’t want to hear it.”

As the Times reports, Mr. Jackson was referring to a February 2013 article,” Love, life, and death: A Martha’s Vineyard marijuana story,” in which he described how cannabis tea had helped Mary, his wife of 53 years, through the pain of pancreatic cancer and the ravages of chemotherapy. Mr. Jackson said they forsook the morphine prescribed by her doctors, and substituted cannabis tea for pain management.

“I never ever saw pain in her face,” he said. “She was eating and happy, right up until she died. You had to see it to believe it. People don’t understand it. It’s a beautiful plant and it works beautifully.”

For years, Jackson has been growing this beneficial plant to help his wife, himself, and other friends in the area.

“There’s another fellow I’ve given it to, his wife has cancer bad,” he said. “They mix it with her food and it’s really helping her. Another fellow had a tube down his stomach and his wife would pour [tea] down his tube for the pain. And it worked. At least there’s no damn pain in it. I gave another guy some, he was taking seven different pills a day. I talked to him a month later and he said he’d gotten rid of three of those pills. It works on all kinds of different things.”

However, these poor people will now suffer thanks to the public service provided by the government in their attempts to stamp out this miraculous plant.

While medical marijuana is legal in Massachusetts, to a certain extent, Jackson says he grows his own because it’s far healthier.

“The people that are selling it are using chemicals that react with the chemotherapy,” he said. “Mine is much better because it’s organically grown. I saw it with my own eyes, I couldn’t believe how well it worked.”

In the interview, Jackson noted that he doesn’t smoke the plant and will continue to consume it, in spite of the immoral laws that prohibit it.

“I don’t like smoke and I don’t like dust,” he said. “We just make tea out of it. But if I need to make the tea, I’ve got it. I don’t sell it. I will continue to have a certain amount in case somebody close to me needs it.”

When word began to spread about this embarrassing action to eradicate a beneficial plant, spokesmen from the agencies involved in the raid began denying they had a hand in it.

After their heroic mission to rid Martha’s Vineyard of cannabis, Colonel James Sahady, Public Affairs Officer for the Massachusetts National Guard, said in an email to the Times, “The order was initiated by the DEA and Massachusetts State Police as part of pre-planned eradication missions throughout the year.”

However, Sahady later issued another statement claiming that the DEA was not involved.

On top of the National Guard’s flip-flop, the Times reports:

On Tuesday, two Massachusetts State Police spokesmen checked into the matter and said there was no evidence of State Police involvement. “It was not us,” Officer Tom Ryan told The Times.

In a follow up email received on Thursday, State Police spokesman David Procopio said the operation was initiated by the State Police. “We routinely request the assistance of the National Guard in these operations,” Mr. Procopio said in an email to The Times. “Our Narcotics Inspection Section conducts these operations regularly across the state. We utilize a trained spotter in a helicopter to search for marijuana grow sites. Once one is located, the spotter directs ground units to the plants, which are confiscated and taken by State Police for eventual destruction. These seizures occasionally result in criminal prosecutions, but many times do not, if the plants are seized from rural or wooded areas that can be accessed by many people (as opposed to just growing in some homeowner’s backyard).”

Mr. Procopio said State Police seized 392 plants, “which are slated for destruction as part of our next narcotics burn.”

Although the helicopter was parked at Martha’s Vineyard Airport last Tuesday night, there are no records of landing fees or fuel purchases paid by a government agency, according to airport manager Ann Crook.

“The idea we’re so frivolously spending money on marijuana interdiction, especially now when it’s about to be rolled back, is extremely frustrating. How many books or school lunches could have been bought instead of having these plants ripped up?” Bill Downing, spokesman for MassCan/NORML said to the Times.

Downing’s sentiment is a very real concern as the war on drugs has spent upwards of a trillion taxpayer dollars since its inception. Every one of those dollars spent ruining the lives of otherwise entirely innocent people.

At any one time, 59,300 prisoners charged with or convicted of violating marijuana laws are behind bars. Of those, 17,000 are behind bars for possession ONLY, not trafficking.

Enforcing marijuana laws costs an estimated $10-15 billion in direct costs alone — not to mention the sustained costs of incarceration of the individual who has done nothing to harm anyone. It is estimated that the money spent enforcing useless marijuana laws is double what we spend on education in this country.

Countless lives are ruined every year as the state locks people away or worse, for possessing a plant. The time is now to end this violent ridiculousness before another innocent life is ruined or taken in the name of controlling what people can put in their own bodies.

This Elementary Teacher shows you what NOT to do when confronted by police

Austin, TX – Pulled over for driving 15 mph over the speed limit, an elementary school teacher was recorded on police dash cam video being slammed to the ground twice by an overly aggressive cop. After the woman was placed in the back of a patrol car, two separate videos caught the arresting officer making false statements regarding the arrest and another officer making racist comments to the restrained teacher.

At 12:30 p.m. on June 15, 2015, Austin Police Officer Bryan Richter pulled over 26-year-old Breaion King for driving 15 mph over the speed limit. According to Richter’s dash cam video, the officer immediately ordered King to step back inside her car before informing the teacher that she had been stopped for speeding.

Complying with his orders, King sat inside her car and gave Richter her driver’s license as commanded. When ordered to put her feet inside so Richter could close her door, King asked, “Could you please hurry up?”

Instantly losing his temper, Richter demanded, “Okay, ma’am, stand up for me. Okay?”

“Okay,” King responded.

Despite the fact that King had been complying with his commands and had agreed to exit her vehicle, Richter suddenly grabbed her for no apparent reason before she could step out of her car.

“Why are you touching me?” King asked in absolute terror. “Oh my God!”

“Stop resisting!” Richter immediately shouted. “Get out of the car!”

“I’m getting out,” King replied. “Let me get out.”

Gripping King’s neck and arm, Richter abruptly pulled her out of the car and whipped her around before violently slamming her against the ground.

“Put your hands behind your back!” Richter ordered.

“Oh my God!” King pleaded. “Are you serious?”

“I’m about to taze you,” Richter threatened as King stood up and placed her hands behind her back.

“Are you kidding me?” King asked as Richter swept her legs and threw her to the ground again for no apparent reason.

“Put your hands behind your back,” Richter repeated while pressing his full weight down on her back.

“Would you let me get down, please?” King pleaded.

After cuffing the 112-pound woman, Richter and a fellow officer led King to the front of his patrol car by lifting her arms behind her back in a torture position. Before she was placed inside the back of the car, King genuinely asked, “Why are my arms so high up?”

Later in the video, Richter recounted the incident to a superior while blatantly making false statements.

“Once we got out of the car, she took a swing at me,” Richter lied. “She missed. And then she swings – and I saw it coming – so I just threw her down. We were on the ground. I didn’t want to hit her. So we just kinda wrestled.”

Falsely stating that King had slipped out of her restraints and needed to be thrown against the pavement again, Richter gave a version of events that failed to corroborate with his own dash cam video. While sitting in the backseat, restrained in handcuffs, King was later subjected to a second officer’s racist comments as he transported her to jail.

“Why are so many people afraid of black people?” Officer Patrick Spradlin asked King in the second video.

“That’s what I want to figure out because I’m not a bad black person,” King responded.

“I can give you a really good idea why it might be that way,” Spradlin continued.

“Why?” King asked.

“Violent tendencies,” Spradlin answered.

Ironically, King was nonviolent when Richter suddenly pulled her out of the car without giving her any time to comply with his orders. Although she had initially been charged with resisting arrest, King’s case was dismissed earlier this year and she ended up paying $165 for driving 50 mph in a 35 mph zone.

After requesting a federal investigation into the incident from the Justice Department, Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo publicly apologized to King and her family at a press conference on Thursday.

“I’m sorry that on the day you were stopped for going 15 miles an hour, you were approached and treated in a manner that is not consistent with this police chief and department,” Chief Acevedo stated. “We’re in 2016 and this will not be tolerated.”

 

Michigan Goes Total Police State With Roadside Saliva Check Points

Michigan goes total police state.

Regardless of your stance on drugs, I think most would agree that the Michigan State Police has no right to ‘run roadside saliva check points’.

The pilot program will be launching in five Michigan counties this year according to this MLive report:

The Michigan State Police is working on plans to establish a pilot program for roadside drug testing, a spokeswoman said.

A new law instructs the state police to pick five counties where it will run a one-year pilot program for saliva-based testing to check drivers for drugs like marijuana, heroin and cocaine.

“We expect the counties to be finalized this summer with a pilot to begin sometime later in the year,” MSP spokeswoman Shanon Banner said.

The five counties will be determined based on criteria including: the number of impaired driving crashes;the number of impaired drivers arrested; and the number of Drug Recognition Experts (DREs) trained in the county, she said.

Attorney Neil Rockind, founder of Southfield-based criminal defense law firm Rockind Law, opposed the legislation he said would set a “dangerous precedent” for Michigan.

“The criminal justice system wants to take science and turn it into a fast, easy utility,” Rockind said. “Science is neither fast nor easy.”

According to the Office of Highway Safety Planning, as of February, Michigan had 99 Certified Drug Recognition Experts in 37 counties.

DRE officers have received “highly specified training” to allow them to identify drivers with drug impairment, Banner said.

The saliva analysis will only be administered by a DRE, she said, and will be given along with the drug recognition 12-step evaluation currently used. DREs employed by state, county and municipal agencies could also be involved.

The law instructs the MSP to conduct a pilot program meant to establish policies in the area of roadside drug analysis, Banner said, and to make a determination of the accuracy and reliability of the tests.