The Golden Platform

A FOCUS ON THE FORCES CHANGING OUR WORLD

Posts tagged Police

0 notes

Video: Mussolini in Color : The Blackshirts

So I was watching this video and realized that Mussolini’s “Blackshirts” were ex-military - and they were responsible for much of the terror that went on in fascist Italy…

…this got me wondering: “don’t we have a similar phenomenon going on in the United States with Police?”

Due to the recession in the US - there are MANY ex-military looking for jobs, and where are they going to get jobs? The police, as this article from 2011 states:

 

People with military backgrounds are bombarding the Topeka Police Department with job applications, as employment options for returning soldiers continue to be dismal in today’s economy.

"We’ve noticed a significant increase in the number of military personnel that have applied in the last several years," said Topeka police Sgt. Ron Gish. "Many of them have combat experience, but some do not."

Gish, who recruits new officers to the Topeka Police Department in addition to working in crime prevention, said jobs are posted online and in law enforcement publications.

He said he has received job inquiries from military members on active duty as far away as Iraq, as well as from civilians in states ranging from Michigan to California.

Although this article is from Kansas - it is a microcosm of what is going on nation-wide. 

There is another interesting, yet deplorable trend going on with police (aside from the troubling level of militarization) is the amount of dogs being killed by cops which is being documented quite well on this wordpress blog; Dogs That Cops Killed. Of course I can’t help but speculate this practice of killing dogs is something learned in the Military [TW - this video is of a dog being killed in Iraq by a US soldier at close range].

So - are all the elements of fascism coming to the USA purely occurring due to happenstance or has it been orchestrated in such a way so that it only appears to be a peculiar coincidence? 
 

Filed under Police fascism dogs ex-military military iraq thoughts

5 notes

NYPD Opens Branch in Israel

Side Note: What?!
______________________________________________________

SOURCE


The 
New York Police Department opened its Israeli branch in the Sharon District Police headquarters in Kfar Saba. Charlie Ben-Naim,  a former Israeli and veteran NYPD detective, was sent on this mission.

You don’t have to fly to New York to meet members of the police department considered to be the best in the world — all you have to do is make the short trip to the Kfar Saba police station in the Sharon, where the NYPD opened a local branch.

Behind the opening of the branch in the Holy Land is the NYPD decision that the Israeli police is one of the major police forces with which it must maintain close work relations and daily contact.

Ben-Naim was chosen for the mission of opening the NYPD branch in Israel. He is a veteran detective of the NYPD and a former Israeli who went to study in New York, married a local city resident and then joined the local police force. Among the things he has dealt with in the line of duty are the extradition of criminals, the transmitting of intelligence information and assistance in the location of missing persons, both in the United States and in Israel.

It was decided, in coordination with the Israeli police, that the New York representative would not operate out of the United States embassy but from a building of the Sharon District Police headquarters, situated close to the Kfar Sava station. The NYPD sign was even hung at the entrance to the district headquarters, and Ben-Naim’s office is situated on the first floor of the building. One of the walls bears the sign: “New York Police Department, the best police department in the world.”

Filed under News Israel NYPD Police New York Holy Land

0 notes

Truck owner wants DEA to pay up after botched sting

Source

The phone rang before sunrise. It woke Craig Patty, owner of a tiny North Texas trucking company, to vexing news about Truck 793 - a big red semi supposedly getting repairs in Houston.

"Your driver was shot in your truck," said the caller, a business colleague. "Your truck was loaded with marijuana. He was shot eight times while sitting in the cab. Do you know anything about your driver hauling marijuana?"

"What did you say?" Patty recalled asking. "Could you please repeat that?"

The truck, it turned out, had been everywhere but in the repair shop.

Commandeered by one of his drivers, who was secretly working with federal agents, the truck had been hauling marijuana from the border as part of an undercover operation. And without Patty’s knowledge, the Drug Enforcement Administration was paying his driver, Lawrence Chapa, to use the truck to bust traffickers.

At least 17 hours before that early morning phone call, Chapa was shot dead in front of more than a dozen law enforcement officers - all of them taken by surprise by hijackers trying to steal the red Kenworth T600 truck and its load of pot.

In the confusion of the attack in northwest Harris County, compounded by officers in the operation not all knowing each other, a Houston policeman shot and wounded a Harris County sheriff’s deputy.

Still waiting

But eight months later, Patty still can’t get recompense from the U.S. government’s decision to use his truck and employee without his permission.

His company, which hauls sand as part of hydraulic fracturing operations for oil and gas companies, was pushed to the brink of failure after the attack because the truck was knocked out of commission, he said.

Patty had only one other truck in operation.

In documents shared with the Houston Chronicle, he is demanding that the DEA pay $133,532 in repairs and lost wages over the bullet-sprayed truck, and $1.3 million more for the damage to himself and his family, who fear retaliation by a drug cartel over the bungled narcotics sting.

"When you start a new business, there are obvious pitfalls you go through, a learning curve," said Patty, who before buying his two trucks worked in the pharmaceutical industry. "But who would ever be ready to deal with this?

"How am I — a small businessman, father of three, American Joe from Texas — supposed to make a claim against a federal agency that has conveniently shrouded itself behind a red, white and blue cloak of confidentiality and secrecy?"

Copies of letters and emails from Patty’s insurance company state that it won’t pay for repairs because the truck was part of a law-enforcement operation. Patty drew from his 401K retirement fund to repair the truck, which was out of operation for 100 days.

"I was not part of this," he said. "I had absolutely no knowledge of any of it until after it happened."

For its part, the DEA has not admitted that it was using Chapa as a spy because its official policy is not to comment on whether someone was an informant.

Lisa Johnson, a spokeswoman for the DEA Houston Division, confirmed that Patty’s demand had been received and noted that it would be investigated by the agency. But the Chronicle established Chapa was an informant based on interviews with multiple law-enforcement officials who spoke on the condition they not be named, and later by courtroom comments of prosecutors.

Patty’s request chronicles much of what he’s been through, including the operating costs for his trucks and everything repaired or replaced due to the attack. Among other disturbing chores was the need to hire a Spring-based company to clean up the mess in the cab caused by the killing.

Houston lawyer Mark Bennett, who is advising Patty, said if Patty’s initial claim is not resolved, the next step would be to sue.

1,000-mile detour

Patty hired Chapa five weeks before the shooting and now wonders how many of the trips in the $90,000 rig included DEA work. GPS information from the truck reveals an unauthorized trek to the Rio Grande Valley in the days before Chapa was killed. He took a 1,000-mile round trip detour from the route he was supposed to travel.

Perhaps most unnerving, Patty says, is that drug mobsters now likely know his name, and certainly know his truck.

Panic at the Patty home these days can be triggered by something as simple as a deer scampering through the wooded yard or a car pulling into the driveway. One morning as his wife made breakfast, one of his young sons suddenly bolted across the house yelling, “Get the guns!”

A Bronco sport utility vehicle had pulled into the driveway past a broken gate. The dogs were barking in the darkness. Patty grabbed a pistol and headed for the front yard.

The Bronco pulled away, leaving a shiny object by the front walkway. It turned out to be the morning newspaper wrapped in a plastic bag reflecting a neighbor’s floodlight.

The whole ordeal has forced his children to grow up more quickly than he’d like, Patty said.

"I wanted to keep them young as long as I could," he said. "I’ve gone to great lengths to keep my son believing in Santa Claus, and now I’m talking to him about death, mayhem and drug cartels.

"That is a huge canyon between the two."

The truck has a new driver, but there’s still one bullet hole inside the truck’s cab. A chunk of seat cushion, sliced out as evidence, has been covered with a patch.

"I really do not worry about driving it," said driver Norman Anderson - as long is it doesn’t involve a trip to South Texas.

"I feel like if I go there, I should put an ‘X’ on each side of my neck, draw a dotted line between them, and write, " ’cut here.’ "

Filed under News Texas Drugs Marijuana DEA Police

10 notes

NYPD Plans To Launch New Criminal And Terrorist Tracking System

Source

The New York Police Department will soon launch an all-seeing “Domain Awareness System” that combines several streams of information to track both criminals and potential terrorists.

New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly says the city developed the software with Microsoft.

Kelly says the program combines city-wide video surveillance with law enforcement databases.

He says it will be officially unveiled by New York’s mayor as soon as next week.

Kelly spoke Saturday before an audience at the Aspen Security Forum.

The NYPD has been under fire for surveillance of Muslim communities and partnering with the CIA to track potential terror suspects. Muslim groups have sued to shut down the NYPD programs.

Kelly defended the policies as key to thwarting 14 terror plots against the city since the attacks of Sept. 11th.

Filed under News NYPD police

0 notes

NYPD detective suspended after cops find man tied up and being held for ransom in officer’s garage

SOURCE

Investigators from the NYPD’s major case squad went to the Springfield Gardens home of veteran cop Ondre Johnson after they were tipped off that a man was being held for $75,000 ransom, the sources said.

An NYPD detective was suspended without pay after cops found a bound man being held for ransom in the garage of the officer’s Queens home, law enforcement sources said Saturday.

Veteran cop Ondre Johnson, 45, was taken into custody outside his Springfield Gardens home at about 3 p.m. Friday after the major case squad was tipped off about the kidnapped man and the demand for $75,000 ransom, the sources said.

According to police, the 25-year-old victim was kidnapped in front of his Cambria Heights home early Friday morning. Cops said that Jason Hutson pulled a gun and told the victim, “Don’t try anything funny or I’ll shoot you.”

Another accomplice then put a T-shirt over the victim’s head, tossed him into an SUV and took him to the garage behind the NYPD officer’s house, where they bound his hands with zip ties and his feet with rope.

One of the kidnappers then called one of the victim’s relatives, demanding $75,000 — but the relative recognized the kidnapper’s voice, cops said.

Once on the scene, cops found the victim bound — and went inside and found Hutson with zip ties on him, police said.

Investigators also found two safes containing materials to make bogus credit cards, sources said.

Johnson, a 17-year veteran who worked for the Brooklyn North Gang Unit, was taken into custody after he identified himself as an officer, sources said.

Johnson said he shares the two-family home with his cousin, Hakeem Clark, 30, but knew nothing about the wild ordeal unfolding at the house, sources said.

He said his cousin lives in a separate apartment inside the home, and that he has no access to where the safes were found or where the kidnapping victim was being held, sources said.

Johnson avoided charges, but was stripped of his badge and gun as cops continue to probe the incident.

“He’s still not completely off the hook,” a source said. “Something is not right here. They’re going to try to find out what he was doing there and how he knows these guys.”

Four men — including Clark — were cuffed inside the house and taken into custody, sources said.

Clark and two others — James Gayle, 27, and Hutson, 27 — were later charged with kidnapping, attempting to collect ransom and criminal possession of a weapon, authorities said.

Alfredo Haughton, 24, was charged with kidnapping.

Clark and Gayle also faced charges for the paraphernalia used in credit card fraud, sources said.

Clark and Hutson were arraigned Saturday and held without bail. The other two were awaiting arraignment.

“We deny any involvement,” said Hutson’s lawyer, Lester Seidman.

The four men charged are no strangers to breaking the law, with prior records that include weapons charges and drug arrests. Hutson served more than seven years in prison for robbery before he was released last April.

The victim claimed that he didn’t know the suspected kidnappers or why they targeted him.


Filed under News NYPD Police

0 notes

War Inc. Shifts Homeward

by Kelley B. Vlahos

It’s been said many times that the war is a self-sustaining industry that requires a constant threat overseas to keep the machine thriving at home. Looking at the millions if not billions of dollars spent on securing “national special security events” against its own citizens, it’s clear that protesters have become the threat that has allowed, in part, the warfare state to flourish on American soil.

Sound dramatic? One need only to look at the lockdown of our cities during these “events” — whether it be the NATO Summit in Chicago today, or preparations to militarize the cities of Tampa and Charlotte for the Democratic and Republican conventions this summer — to see that the constitutionally protected, American tradition of protest has become a reason for law enforcement to spend their quickly evaporating budgets each year on new toys and overtime — including the latest in surveillance, crowd control gear and communications equipment, not to mention the helicopters overhead and armed vehicles on the ground.

Just as important, this threat allows the federal government to extend its own powers under the Patriot Act onto Main Street, all in the order of counterterrorism and national security.

No one would dispute that the gathering of representatives from 50 member states of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), including 28 members of the military alliance in Afghanistan, warrants extra security. Indeed, we live in a world today where gunmen walk right up to U.S. members of Congress and shoot them in the head, or pack cars full of explosives on the city street. But it becomes increasingly clear, after 10 years of conventions and “special events” with little or no incident, that the specter of terrorism is being used to generate intimidating and repressive conditions, particularly against peaceful protesters, and proliferating an industry that thrives on domestic conflict and chaos.

What is this industry? Look no further than the advertisements for this year’s GovSec 2012, the annual security exposition held in Washington, D.C. In April, it promised to help “arm homeland security professionals and law enforcement professionals alike with the training and tools they need to detect, prevent and respond to terrorist attacks — from large-scale international threats to the dangers posed by homegrown extremists and lone wolves.”

According to this report, funding for the U.S. homeland security and homeland defense sector (including federal, state and local governments, and the private sector) will grow from $184 billion in 2011 to $205 billion by 2014. The market will grow from $73 billion in 2011 to $86 billion by 2014.

“The face of terrorism is constantly changing,” insisted GovSec Director Don Berey in a GovSec press release. “As a result, it is critical that those on the front lines of homeland security understand where new threats may arise and how their strategies must be adjusted to remain ever vigilant.” Adjusted, and paid for.

Thus, the endless war over there, becomes the endless war at home. Chicago is just the latest example of putting these new “strategies” to use. Talking about Chicago last week on Democracy Now!, Bill Ayers, University of Illinois professor and right-wing nemesis, explained:

There’s a mass campaign. They’re shutting Lakeshore Drive. They’re shutting the trains. They’re closing exits off the freeways. And they’re creating a kind of culture of fear. We have police officers we—who are friends of ours, we run into in coffee shops. They’ve told us that the training is focused a lot on the danger of the protesters and how you should be careful when you grab one of them, because they might have some kind of poison spike in their sleeve or something. I mean, it really is quite nuts.

At the same time, they’ve denied permits, taken permits away, given them back, been very vague about making any agreement with the protesters…we insist that this is a family-friendly, nonviolent, permitted march. And all the kind of hysteria about what’s about to happen is really brought on by the police. I don’t think anything is going to happen, except that they are creating the conditions for a police riot, once again.

Reports on Monday morning indicated that 45 people were arrested and four officers injured, including a police officer who was reportedly stabbed during a dramatic clash with protesters on Sunday night. In his remarks to reporters Sunday, Chicago Police Chief Garry McCarthy blamed the “black bloc” for rushing the police and precipitating the violence.

Read more …

Filed under News Commentary Antiwar War DHS Police Police state

2 notes

Press Conference - 5:30 Thurs - 3340 W Fillmore: National Lawyers Guild Condemns Preemptive Police Raids & Unlawful Searches

OCCUPY CHICAGO

PRESS RELEASE

Chicago Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild

National Lawyers Guild Condemns Preemptive Police Raids & Unlawful Searches on the Streets

Early morning house raid in Bridgeport and harassment of activists indicates intolerance of free speech rights

NOTE: Press conference to be held TODAY at 5:30pm at 3340 W. Fillmore Street, the Chicago Police Department’s Organized Crime Division

Chicago, IL — The National Lawyers Guild (NLG) condemns a preemptive police raid that took place at approximately 11:30pm Wednesday in the Bridgeport neighborhood, and instances of harassment on the street, in which Chicago police are unlawfully detaining, searching, and questioning NATO protesters. The Bridgeport raid was apparently conducted by the Organized Crime Division of the Chicago Police Department and resulted in as many as 8 arrests.

According to witnesses in Bridgeport, police broke down a door to access a 6-unit apartment building near 32nd & Morgan Streets without a search warrant. Police entered an apartment with guns drawn and tackled one of the tenants to the floor in his kitchen. Two tenants were handcuffed for more than 2 hours in their living room while police searched their apartment and a neighboring unit, repeatedly calling one of the tenants a “Commie faggot.” A search warrant produced 4 hours after police broke into the apartment was missing a judge’s signature, according to witnesses. Among items seized by police in the Bridgeport raid were beer-making supplies and at least one cell phone.

"Preemptive raids like this are a hallmark of National Special Security Events," said Sarah Gelsomino with the NLG and the People’s Law Office. "The Chicago police and other law enforcement agencies should be aware that this behavior will not be tolerated and will result in real consequences for the city."

In another incident, 3 plainclothes police officers unlawfully stopped, handcuffed, and searched a NATO protester on Michigan Avenue and Wacker Drive at approximately 2pm today. According to the protester, he did not consent to a search and there was no probable cause to detain him. The police also photographed and questioned him about where he was from, how he got to Chicago, how long it took, what he was doing here, where he was staying, who he was with, and how long he was planning to say in Chicago. The protester refused to answer any questions and was eventually released.

The NLG has received reports that at least 20 people have been arrested so far this week, and two people are still in custody, not including the Bridgeport residents who are still unaccounted for. One of the protesters currently being detained, Danny Johnson of Los Angeles, has been accused of assaulting a police officer during an immigrant rights rally on Tuesday afternoon. However, multiple witnesses on the scene, including an NLG Legal Observer, recorded a version of events that contradict the accusations of police.

During the week of NATO demonstrations, the NLG is staffing a legal office and answering calls from activists on the streets and in jail. The NLG will also be dispatching scores of Legal Observers to record police misconduct and representing arrestees in the event the city pursues criminal prosecutions.

# # #

Filed under News Chicago NATO NATO Summit Police Police state Occupy

1 note

BLUE ALERT! - Because, apparently, our precious ‘law enforcement officers’ don’t want to be the targets of violence and would prefer that they remain the sole arbitrators of arbitrary force and aggression. 
 _____________________________________________________________________
Side Note: I’ll start blogging more stuff soon - I’ve just been overwhelmed with life the past several days… I also disabled my “ask” box because it turned into someone’s anonymous platform for stupidity. I’ll reactivate it soon enough though.

Filed under News Police Police state

1 note

Raw Video: Univ. Police Raid Calif. Occupy Camp

University of California, Berkeley police raided the Occupy the Farm encampment on university-owned land early Monday morning after protesters ignored another weekend deadline to clear out. (May 14)

Filed under News Berkeley police Occupy Raid

1 note

Man disorientated pilot with laser: police

SOURCE

A man accused of disorientating a police helicopter pilot during an alleged laser attack from his front lawn will remain in custody despite despite denying the charges.

Matthew William Moore, 39, appeared in Campbelltown Local Court on Wednesday accused of pointing a green laser at Polair 3 overnight.

The helicopter was supporting local police in the Leumeah area, in Sydney’s southwest, when the laser allegedly struck it four times at an altitude of 450m.

"The pilot involved did report that he was disorientated," Inspector Tim Calman told reporters on Wednesday.

The helicopter crew used thermal imaging to pinpoint the origin of the laser and sent police on the ground to Bowers Place, in Leumeah.

Officers arrested Moore on his front lawn and said they located a laser pointer nearby.

In court, Moore pleaded not guilty to possessing or using a prohibited weapon without a permit and threatening the safety of an aircraft and the person on board.

He was refused bail and will appear in the same court on June 1.

Filed under News Australia Police Laser pointer

2 notes

Chicago, IL: Police vehicles sabotaged, anarchist symbol left nearby

War On Society

 A vandal or vandals have been at work at a Morgan Park neighborhood police station, loosening lugnuts on squad cars there and plunking a large piece of concrete spray-painted with an anarchy symbol in the station parking lot.

“It weighs every bit of 50 pounds,” said a Morgan Park District officer. “It’s a big hunk of concrete found in the middle of the parking lot.”

An officer discovered it Thursday morning at the station, 1900 W. Monterey Ave. on the Far South Side, and it was blocking some lanes of the lot. A white spray-painted “anarchy A” symbol was found on each side of the concrete block, which is about 15 inches by 15 inches and 8 inches thick, said the officer.

Authorities have no idea who placed it there. Officers carried it into the station, inventoried the concrete and developed a police report on the incident, the officer said.

And that’s not all, the officer reported.

“We’ve come across four cars with lug nuts either removed or loosened,” in the lot, said the officer, who said the latest was discovered today.

“The first one was last week and then there’s been two or three more – today and yesterday,” according to the officer, who said it could be extremely dangerous and cause a wheel to fall off.

The Morgan Park District Commander yesterday ordered a check on all their squad cars, the officer said. No arrests have been made and the boulder did not cause any damage.

A video camera is set up at the lot, but because of newly bloomed leaves, its view is obstructed. So police stationed one officer to watch the lot, the officer said.

Filed under News Chicago Anarchy Anarchism Police

1 note

License Plate Tracking Spreads beyond Criminal Suspects

SOURCE

From Tennessee to the District of Columbia, police are using mobile and stationary surveillance cameras to collect and store license plates of residents who have committed no crime—so that they can be found if they ever do.
 
In Tennessee, police utilize cameras mounted atop patrol cars that can capture thousands of license numbers each day. The information is then loaded into an ever-expanding database, which can help officers locate a vehicle in the event its owner is suspected of criminal behavior. The program is now expanding to include stationary cameras mounted next to busy roads.
 
“I’m sure that there’s going to be people out there that say this is an invasion of privacy,” Detective James Kemp of Gallatin County told The Tennessean. But “the possibilities are endless there for solving crimes. It’s just a multitude of information out there—to not tap into it to better protect your citizens, that’s ludicrous.”
 
In Washington D.C., local police make use of 250 cameras set up around the city that can capture license plates. Last year they claimed that the cameras led to an average of one arrest a day. DC reportedly has the highest concentration of cameras per square mile in the United States for spotting criminals on the move or just ordinary citizens going about their lives.
 
Jay Stanley, senior policy analyst for the American Civil Liberties Union’s technology and liberty program, expressed concern over D.C.’s “large database of innocent people’s comings and goings.” He told The Washington Post: “The government has no business collecting that kind of information on people without a warrant.”
 
Others predict that the technology will be declared constitutional because license plates are displayed in public, so there is no invasion of privacy.

Filed under News Surveillance Surveillance State Police Tracking big brother Washington dc

0 notes

Victoriaville, QC: Riot against the liberal party of Quebec

SOURCE

 VICTORIAVILLE- Many people were doubled over coughing as police lobbed dozens of canisters of chemical irritants into the crowd in an effort to push the demonstrators away from the Victorin hotel and conference centre, where the Quebec Liberal party is holding a general council meeting this weekend.

The event began peacefully at 5 p.m., with about 1,000 protesters turning up in the town to voice their discontent with various government plans, including the Plan Nord, shale gas exploration, and the impending tuition fee hike.

As protesters reached the conference centre, however, they started shaking the waist-high security fence. A group of masked men also began throwing rocks, projectiles and fireworks at the police and the building. One window was smashed, and moments later the protesters breached the fence and were a few feet from the doors.

About 200 Sûreté du Québec officers in riot gear responded with the chemical irritant know as CS gas, and the air quickly became nearly unbreathable.

What followed was two hours of violent confrontation that spilled into the parking lot behind the hotel and onto the properties of several residents of the town, who watched nervously from their living room windows. Projectiles flew, dozens of gas canisters were deployed and rubber bullets were fired as the protesters were slowly but surely pushed back toward the Wal Mart parking lot where the event began.

Three police officers and six protesters were injured seriously enough to be taken to a hospital during the melée, which began around 6:30 p.m. and lasted more than two hours in the pouring rain. One person, a protester, suffered what police are describing as “life-threatening” head injuries after being hit by a projectile.

It is still unclear if the object was a rock, a billiard ball or a rubber bullet launched by police. The unidentified protester’s condition was still being described as critical at 1 p.m. Saturday.

Aside from the injuries suffered, the riot resulted in some moderate damage to property. Several vehicles, including an SQ van, were vandalized and one of the convention centre’s windows was shattered, but there was little to no damage to nearby private homes and the protest was contained to the area immediately surrounding the convention centre.

Only four people were arrested during the demonstration itself. However, within minutes of leaving Victoriaville, three chartered buses filled with protesters were stopped along highways heading for Montreal and every person on board was arrested and identified. A total of 106 people were rounded up and brought to local stations for questioning overnight.

Read more …

Filed under News Canada Quebec Anarchy Anarchism Protest Riot Police

0 notes

Using NYPD Warrant Squads to Monitor Protesters May Violate Constitution: Experts

By Ailsa Chang

Additional Occupy Wall Street demonstrators are coming forward to allege they were targeted by police officers executing old bench warrants for minor violations in order to collect intelligence about the May Day protests this week.

Executing old warrants — no matter how minor — is legal.  But legal experts say the tactic becomes illegal if it is done solely to investigate political activity.

The half-dozen or so stories  fit a pattern: each individual was approached and questioned by officers who said they were picking up people on arrest warrants for low-level, non-criminal violations, such as public urination, walking around with an open container of alcohol or biking on a sidewalk. These warrants can stay open for years.

Court officials say there are more than 1 million bench warrants currently open for these types of violations in New York City.  But this week, squads of police officers decided to act on a few of them.  

Swarmed and Plucked From the Street

Officers visited up to six homes the day before the May 1 protests, but Shawn Carrié found himself getting questioned the evening of the protest. He was coordinating all internal communications for the Occupy movement on May Day. At about 9 p.m., he was walking near Wall Street, heading home.

“And somebody comes up to me and says, ‘Shawn?’  And just grabs my arm and nine dudes surround me,” said Carrié.

He said nine plain clothes officers wearing NYPD jackets asked if he had anything sharp in his pockets.  He shook his head no. He said they started pulling possessions out of his clothes, including his cell phone, his wallet and keys.  

Within seconds, he said, they bound his hands with zip ties, but didn’t explain why. Then the officers placed him in a red van waiting nearby that was marked with an NYPD sticker, he said.

When he arrived at Police Headquarters in Lower Manhattan, Carrié said there were several other people waiting to be processed, but he skipped ahead of them. He said he police quickly led him to a room filled with boxes of files where he was alone, except for one officer staring at him from a table.

“And he said, ‘Go ahead, sit down,’” said Carrié.  “He asked me, ‘Do you know why you’re here?’” said Carrié.  “And he said, ‘Tell me about what you were doing today.’”

Carrié said he didn’t say anything. The NYPD declined to comment, and would not verify Carrie’s account of events.   

He noticed the officer’s badge number. WNYC traced that number to a detective within the NYPD’s Intelligence Division.  A sergeant who signed the property voucher form issued to Carrié for his confiscated property identified himself on the document as another member of the Intelligence Division.  

Carrié said he spent the next 13 hours in jail.  

He said he was placed alone in a cell. It’s unclear why he was isolated from the holding pen where several individuals typically wait together to see a judge.

He found out at court the next day that he had been arrested because of two open warrants from 2007 for violations related to a public urination incident.

When his lawyer read the warrants, it turned out they belonged to a different Shawn Carrié, who had a different birth date and a different address.  But now this Shawn Carrié — a name he said is not his given name and one he only uses for marches — has to go to trial next month to fight what he says are false charges.  

“Scared to Freely Communicate”

Carrié said, regardless of the infraction, the alleged practice of using old warrants as a pretext for questioning people about their political activity can chill speech.  

“It’s making people scared to freely communicate, and making them feel like they’re watched.  ‘Even if you’re not doing anything wrong, we’re watching,’” he said.

Read more …

Filed under News Police New York NYPD Occupy Surveillance Free Speech US Supreme Court Occupy Wall Street

1 note

Malaysia: protesters clash with police

SOURCE

Thousands of protesters gathered in Kuala Lumpur’s central square calling for changes to the electoral system, which they claim has been manipulated to favour the long-ruling coalition in forthcoming elections.

Witnesses say the protesters trampled through barbed-wire barricades set up around the heavily-guarded Merdeka Square, in defiance of a court order that had banned them from the square.

Protesters also battled with police at a train station nearby, throwing bottles and chairs at officers who responded by firing tear gas rounds.

Most of the protesters had dispersed about an hour after the violence began, but several hundred remained and were still taunting police.

Filed under News Protest Police Malaysia

Web Analytics