Have a Nice Vacation, Broseph

Good riddance to bad rubbish:

A suburban St. Louis police officer who threatened to kill media members as he pointed his high-powered rifle at a group of people filming Tuesday night’s protests in Ferguson, Mo., has been suspended after video of the incident went viral Wednesday.

The unidentified St. Ann, Mo. police officer, who told one man his name was “go f— yourself,” has been “relieved of duty and suspended indefinitely” for his “inappropriate” actions, the St. Louis County Police Department said in a statement to Mashable.

In the minute-long video clip, the portly, bald police officer is seen pointing his semi-automatic assault rifle at crowds of people walking along a Ferguson street just before midnight Tuesday.

Now how about the cops who gassed Al Jazeera, arrested Lowery and Reilly, who called all the protestors fucking animals, etc. It’s too much to ask that Officer Wilson be taken into custody, apparently.

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143 replies
  1. 1
    cathyx says:

    These cops are in way over their heads.

  2. 2
    Howard Beale IV says:

    Outsourced to Ken White.

  3. 3
    Hungry Joe says:

    I still don’t understand why police are carrying those weapons. Yeah, the guns were given to them by the Pentagon/Homeland Security/whomever, and we all like to play with neat-o toys. But isn’t their very purpose to shoot a whole lot of people in an extremely short period of time? And if that’s so, then whoever issued those weapons either a) wants his officers capable of doing just that; b) is a flat-out idiot; or c) both.

    The only time I can remember police needing such weapons was a few years ago in or near L.A., when some crazy-ass bank robbers (I think) were shooting up the town with some real heavy-duty shit. That’s exactly one incident. Ever. (That I can recall, anyway.)

  4. 4
    mark says:

    I entered the health care field mainly to help people and for job security. I should have been a cop where, in America, you can do anything ( including beating, insulting, tasing, gassing, spraying, maiming, and killing someone who is unarmed) and still get paid.

    Like the late writer Ed Abbey said, policework “attracts the brute mentality”. So you would think, there would be systems in place to make this less of a problem. Instead, we give them M-16s, grenade launchers, flame throwers, and tanks without any accountability.

  5. 5
    Cacti says:

    Suspended with or without pay?

  6. 6
    WaterGirl says:

    Someone should tell these idiots that cell phones have video cameras. Or maybe not.

  7. 7
    JCT says:

    That is simply appalling. Jesus.

    Do these guys undergo any training whatsoever before they ‘re handed those rifles and sent into the community? Wow.

  8. 8
    Cacti says:

    @Hungry Joe:

    I still don’t understand why police are carrying those weapons. Yeah, the guns were given to them by the Pentagon/Homeland Security/whomever, and we all like to play with neat-o toys. But isn’t their very purpose to shoot a whole lot of people in an extremely short period of time? And if that’s so, then whoever issued those weapons either a) wants his officers to have the capability of doing just that; b) is a flat-out idiot; or c) both

    The best example I’ve seen of creeping police militarization is the town of Doraville, Georgia. Despite having a population of 8,500, the local police force has a SWAT team and an armored personnel carrier.

    Smh.

  9. 9
    Mnemosyne says:

    @JCT:

    Do these guys undergo any training whatsoever before they ‘re handed those rifles and sent into the community?

    They get training, but the training is, Demand compliance and back it up by force if necessary. They don’t seem to get any kind of conflict resolution training or learn how to de-escalate a situation. The theory seems to be that the cop should be the craziest person in any situation so that the citizens s/he is dealing with will do anything to appease the officer.

    ETA: Jaysus, it really does sound like they’re training them to be abusive spouses, doesn’t it? I can’t remember who said that first.

  10. 10
    Trollhattan says:

    Does this finally make the president Black Jimmy Carter?

    President Barack Obama sent special operations troops to Syria this summer on a secret mission to rescue American hostages, including journalist James Foley, held by Islamic State extremists, but they did not find them, the Obama administration said Wednesday.

    Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/#storylink=cpy

  11. 11
    Heliopause says:

    Nice they suspended him, but according to this website what he did is aggravated assault in many places. Nice to know that the punishment for aggravated assault in Missouri is going into timeout.

  12. 12
    scav says:

    @Mnemosyne: Beat you up, then say they only do it because they love you, they’re protecting you, it’s for Your Own Good. Now, Respect them, Love them because of their care, award them immediate civic recognition, obedience and honor and hand over some extra nice cash the next time they make a cold call for donations!

  13. 13
    TR says:

    “To Protect And Fuck You”

  14. 14
    Roger Moore says:

    @JCT:

    Do these guys undergo any training whatsoever before they ‘re handed those rifles and sent into the community?

    “Don’t shoot at other cops.”

  15. 15
    maya says:

    He’ll get his vacation with full pay and a few extra bucks too boot after the Belligerent Brotherhood of Piececarrying Officers Union starts leaning.

    Remember Sgt. Pepper Spray @ UC Davis got $38k in workman’s comp for his misdeeds.

  16. 16
    Botsplainer says:

    Pointing and laughing at Albers (the candyass rifle wielder) goes a long way toward shattering the culture of chickenshit scaredy-cop.

  17. 17
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    I am so conflicted by all of this. Who the fuck are these police? I have any number of cops in my immediate family and on their worst days, could not imagine them behaving in such a manner. I doubt any have ever fired their weapons in the line of duty.

    Also, I would love to see a chart of the number of unarmed people killed by police over the past 10 years vs. the number of police killed in the line of duty. Then how many of those cops were killed by an unarmed person. Because I’m tired of hearing how these cops are in danger, so they have to kill the unarmed.

    Seems to me, we are the ones in danger.

  18. 18
    Lahru says:

    Can Democrats leverage Ferguson? I think they can, display Fox News responses to what has occurred. By now many people realize their right wing bent and use their words of their video against them. I understand that Michael Brown’s death is not something to Democrats like would like to use in campaign ads but I do know that Republicans are already using his death thru their TV network’s talking points every day. Republicans play to WIN no matter what it takes. Morals and respect and truth are not in their playbook/

  19. 19
    Hungry Joe says:

    To rephrase my earlier comment: The only excuse I can think of for issuing such weapons to police is when there’s reasonable cause to believe that they may be required to shoot a whole lot of people in an extremely short period of time. Except (again) for that L.A. robbery, I don’t believe there’s ever been such a situation anywhere, at any time, in the U.S. of A.

    (Insert obligatory Zombie Apocalypse reference here.)

  20. 20
    Catherine D. says:

    @TaMara (BHF):

    Oh, I have many, many cops in my family and I believe every word. Authoritarian assholes, spousal abusers and liars. At least my relatives were only armed with revolvers.

  21. 21
    Elie says:

    I don’t usually link to CNN but they have this about a cop who writes a column of some sort for WaPO.

    If this is the mind set, it should not be surprising that cops shoot first and ask questions (if ever), much much later:

  22. 22
    gbear says:

    @mark: Trouble is, you HAVE to act like that to be on some police departments. My nephew was hired by a small suburban police force and didn’t make it past the probation period because he wasn’t adapting to the good-ol-boy network. The chief really liked him but none of the officers wanted to work with him.

    He’s now teaching ‘problem’ kids at his home town high school and doing really well. He’s a really great guy.

  23. 23
    WaterGirl says:

    @TaMara (BHF):

    Seems to me, we are the ones in danger.

    Amen.

  24. 24
    Heliopause says:

    I might add, O.J. Simpson is doing a long sentence right now for doing something similar to this.

  25. 25
    scav says:

    @TaMara (BHF): At some point, there’s going to have to be some self-policing for their own security, rather than an automatic assumption that it’s the civilians that are at fault. Out of control cops need to be seen as endangering good cops.

  26. 26
    Comrade Luke says:

    @TaMara (BHF):

    Another question to consider:

    Sure, they have a dangerous job, but: when was the last time a group of people rushed the cops in a situation like this? I can’t remember any time.

    So why do they need this stuff? Could they accomplish the same thing on horses, with batons?

  27. 27
    Elie says:

    Cops are a culture. My cousin has a couple friends who are married to Chicago cops. She hates it when they come to parties… they seem to like to start trouble — or trouble follows them…

    Its a very hard job that they have to mediate between the larger society and all sorts of people who as anyone will honestly admit, are dangerous criminals. I fully understand that they have to be very cautious because a routine traffic stop or domestic call can lead to death or serious injury. We definitely expect a lot of them and I support every technical or other assistance that we can give them to help them do their jobs safely for themselves, and for the larger innocent community that can be mistaken for serious felons.

    We WANT their protection and to interact with them — to help them and ourselves… How can we make this happen?

  28. 28
    JCT says:

    @Roger Moore: That’s probably the extent of it.

    That video was really disturbing – the guy looked completely freaked out by everyone milling around him. If this speaks to the “quality ” of the local LEOs than I am no longer surprised in the least regarding what happened to Michael Brown.

  29. 29
    Elie says:

    @Comrade Luke:

    Horses work very well in riot and crowd control situations but they are expensive and again, require training on how to ride and manage them. Nothing is without the need for training. Dogs are also very helpful but again, require training and maintenance and are expensive relative to free donations from the Dept of Defense.

    When we realized how much we spent on the Iraq war — how much it cost us in lives and treasure — we didn’t know THIS cost, did we?

  30. 30
    am says:

    I thought the people in the video were a-holes, and have no problem with the officer telling them to f*k themselves. Raising a gun and training it on people in a non-lethal situation, though? Glad he’s suspended.

  31. 31
    guachi says:

    @Heliopause:

    Clearly, the intelligence community couldn’t find the journalist because they were too busy illegally spying on Americans, amirite?

  32. 32
    askew says:

    @Trollhattan:

    According to Erik Erickson it does.

    @EWErickson: Add “failed hostage rescue” to the Obama – Carter comparisons.

  33. 33
    gbear says:

    @am: Did you catch the moment where the cop said he was going to kill them? It was way before he told them to fuck themselves.

  34. 34
    Elie says:

    @askew:

    Why of course!

  35. 35
    RK says:

    If there’s one thing cops hate it’s challenge to their authority. But this guy just seems to be really bad at his job. I also see trouble with this entire case if there’s anything to the conflicting eyewitness testimony reported by the NYT, especially if there’s enough evidence to reasonably believe there was a serious physical altercation between the cop and Brown before Brown started running.

  36. 36
    lamh36 says:

    Speaking of Wilson, this is exactly what I was thinking when I read some of the newest pro-Darrin Wilson scenarios

    @_Thundercleese
    First Darren Wilson had lacerations, then an eye fracture, now he was beaten unconscious… Next he died, came back 3 days later and shot

  37. 37
    WaterGirl says:

    @am: I’m sorry, but when you’re supposed to be the professional, I don’t see how “go fuck yourselves” is an appropriate response.

  38. 38
    Trentrunner says:

    One can only hope that Erick (Son of Erick) will soon join his fellow asshole shitstirring fatfuck extremist Breitbart in the myocardio infarction hall-of-infamy burial ground.*

    Man, do I hate that dude.

    *But this does remind me that Andrew Breitbart is still very, very, very dead, making himself finally useful to thousands of worms and hungry, hungry bacteria. Now I feel better.

  39. 39
    WaterGirl says:

    @RK: I don’t understand how any of those details make any difference. You don’t shoot an unarmed person who has their hands up. Period.

  40. 40
    Elie says:

    @RK:

    We have very little evidence of anything that happened and we have no police report. If Michael hurt the officer, as has been whispered, he sure had little evidence of that in the VIDEOS that were taken.

    I hear that people are willing to give policemen the benefit of the doubt — but each day that there is no information to square with known facts, it makes it much harder to think that this guy will get off completely. He surely will never be a policeman again no matter what.

  41. 41
    askew says:

    @Elie:

    Yep, expect the media to run with that comparison for the rest of the month. They were getting sick of calling Obama lazy. Now, they can go back to calling him incompetent.

  42. 42
    skerry says:

    Video of police shooting in St Louis yesterday. Very graphic.

    Two cops fired 12 shots into a mentally ill man with a knife and then cuffed him as he lay dying.

    Responding to a shoplifting call just a few miles from the unrest in Ferguson yesterday afternoon, two St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department fired a dozen shots in all at 25-year-old Kajieme Powell, killing him instantly. Described by neighbors as mentally ill, Powell was carrying a knife and shouting, “Shoot me! Shoot me! Shoot me! Shoot me now, motherfucker!” as he approached the officers. Today, the department released a cell phone video of the shooting, which a rep for the police union called “exculpatory.”

  43. 43
    Debbie says:

    @TaMara (BHF):

    Why only 10 years? There should be no statute of limitations on this kind of abuse. You wouldn’t be able to include Amadou Dialou who took 41 bullets. And why just unarmed murders? Why nor include the eleventy billion stop and frisks in NYC?

  44. 44
    Dave says:

    @am: Yeah no his response was completely wrong. They and others may have well been assholes before this but he threatened to kill them. His job is not to escalate and if he can’t do that job then he shouldn’t have it. And others are correct they have no business with AR-15’s in this situation. They are not needed. I’ve dealt with hostile crowds getting $10.00 an hour as a security guard at a trauma hospital and if I can do a much better job than he did for that pay than I have no sympathy.
    And yes I understand he was afraid and covering for it by being a macho dick. I don’t care. I’ve been afraid. I came within maybe two lbs of trigger pressure of murder (and it would have been murder not killing in combat which is still awful but not the exact same thing) when in Afghanistan at the end of four tours and after months of combat and daily fights but I didn’t this guy had no excuse. I saw some Texas NG react the same way to some kids a dumb scared guy who felt his authority was questioned by some kids. I had to intervene with his element to back them all down. This kinda went off track but since there are not full blown riots going on, and even if there were his approach is ineffective and unjustified, he was just wrong. The assholishness of the protester’s and we only saw that after he threatened to kill them (it could have happened before but really the police have been the worst escalators of this entire shameful event so I really have no fucks left to give regarding them) is immaterial.

  45. 45
    Elie says:

    @askew:

    They of course will do what they do. I am nevertheless grateful for this man’s strength and intestinal fortitude. He stays low key and balanced — just what our crazee crazee country needs —

  46. 46
    dmsilev says:

    @askew: And, just like Carter, this will be fatal to Obama’s hopes of reelection.

  47. 47
    Roger Moore says:

    @JCT:
    I think your question about training is spot on. My guess is that few if any of those police have serious training in crowd control and dealing with riots. I wouldn’t be surprised if some of them had no more training than the briefing they got before being sent out to deal with the crowds. It also makes me think that this has probably always been the case, and that the reason so many crowd situations get so ugly is because the police officers involved are way out of their depth.

  48. 48
    Hill Dweller says:

    @askew: Let them run with it. The admin can remind them of the Bin Laden raid, and successful recovery of Captain Phillips and Jessica Buchanan.

  49. 49
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Cacti:

    Without.

    In a phone interview, Jimenez said Albers’ had been suspended without pay and would undergo a psychological evaluation and sensitivity training.

  50. 50
    RK says:

    @ Elie and WaterGirl

    I think the problem is that the evidence won’t be determinative. I suppose a lesser offense may be attainable but it may not be as self-defense seems to cover any actions taken. Perhaps he can be charged on something related to his breaking protocol if he did.

  51. 51
    Cacti says:

    The St. Louis Post Dispatch article identified the thug cop making the threats.

    He’s a 20-year veteran of the St. Ann Police Department and a lieutenant.

    St. Louis area law enforcement needs a serious house cleaning.

  52. 52
    Roger Moore says:

    @Cacti:

    St. Louis area American law enforcement needs a serious house cleaning.

    FTFY.

  53. 53
    Carolinus says:

    @askew:

    Yep, expect the media to run with that comparison for the rest of the month. They were getting sick of calling Obama lazy. Now, they can go back to calling him incompetent.

    You really think the media will go that route? A daring rescue attempt inside Syria, the ISIL militants at the location killed, and the special ops team made it back safe. Yeah, ultimately the hostages weren’t there, but this demonstrates the US’s resolve and that we did what we could. I honestly don’t get how it’s a bad thing?

  54. 54
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @JCT:

    That video was really disturbing – the guy looked completely freaked out by everyone milling around him.

    In no way am I excusing or condoning his behavior. I’m glad he’s been suspended without pay, and I hope he’ll be an example to other members of the Ferguson, St. Ann, St. Louis County, and other jurisdictions. But one of the articles I saw (I will try to find it and provide a link) said that he was on his fourth consecutive night of crowd-control duty on top of working his regular shift. That’s probably the case with quite a few LEOs.

    Several days of sleep deprivation + high adrenaline = not a good combination for anyone, let alone someone in a position of power armed with deadly toys.

  55. 55
    Elizabelle says:

    A police force full of George Zimmermans.

    Be on the lookout for any commentary by police who take their “serve and protect” and peace officer duties seriously. Maybe by retired cops. I’d be interested in what they have to say.

    A lot of those who serve/d in St. Louis County must feel sick about how their PD looks to the world.

    Also: I think we’ll see some improvements in policing made, c/o enhanced oversight by DOJ. It can be another legacy of President Obama.

  56. 56
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Trollhattan:
    @Carolinus: Just like Operation Ivory Coast. That cost Nixon a second term… no, wait, it didn’t.

  57. 57
    lamh36 says:

    WARNING: GRUESOME VIDEO, You can you tube it, I won’t put the link up

    The St Louis police killed a man yesterday and a cell phone video is out.

    ‏@ryangrim 1h

    St. Louis police release video of the recent killing of Kajieme Powell. It does not match their story. No words:

  58. 58
    Roger Moore says:

    @Carolinus:

    I honestly don’t get how it’s a bad thing?

    Sure, they killed a lot of bad guys and got out clean, but it’s still a failure in the big picture. Besides, it lets the media bag on Obama, which is what’s really important.

  59. 59
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @RK: Even if there was an altercation between Michael Brown and Wilson prior to the shooting, there is no way that a cop could both subjective and objective feel that his life was in danger from someone who was either fleeing from him or holding his hands up in a gesture of surrender. That appears to be what the eyewitnesses saw and it is fully consistent with the results of the private autopsy. Self defense doesn’t come into it.

  60. 60
    Elie says:

    @RK:

    I see your point.

    That said, what is the outcome that we ultimately want from this?

    While punishing Wilson by some sort of judicial process is desireable – even understandable — isn’t it better for the most people if we can get substantive systemic changes to policing — not just in Ferguson but across the country? Me, I would be please to see the militarization of the cops stopped cold..

    We need more cops, not fewer. We need them trained for what they face out there and lets not fool ourselves — its plenty uncertain and dangerous. We want them to feel our support for them in our communities. We want them to care about us — our children, our crazy people, our outcasts. We have to listen to them also — what can help them do these things better?

    That would be a justice worthy of this young man and other young men’s lives, IMHO.

  61. 61
    Elie says:

    @Elizabelle:

    Have you taken a look at Zimmerman’s life lately?

    He is receiving the justice/curse of the gods… he is free but in a prison of his own soul. He knows his sin and it is killing him. Lost his marriage and job after job. He is circling around the drain….

    THAT is God’s justice… not man’s.

  62. 62
    karen says:

    @mark:

    I heard about would be cops being rejected because their IQs were too high. Guess it’s true.

    It’s too much to ask that Officer Wilson be taken into custody, apparently.

    Are you kidding? I’m waiting for him to get a medal, he’s already the hero in a lot of the media. I’m also surprised that the Aryan militia isn’t there yet.

  63. 63
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name):

    subjectively and objectively

    Jesus. Learn to spell.

  64. 64
    West of the Cascades says:

    @Trentrunner: Sadly, Breitbart is probably poisoning all those otherwise useful worms, bacteria, and maggots that sought to feast off his remains.

  65. 65
    scav says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: To a certain point, the various PDs in the area have dug and prepared their own bed for years and now they’re lying in it. Congratulations It’s blooming. They’re really whipped out the shovels over the last few days. If they lack resources (other than apparently bang bangs and tanks), if they lack training, if they lack manpower well, if they lack community good will and trust, who’s fault is that? And, who exactly’s not asking for additional outside resources so that they’re not so frazzled and overworked? Are they really that much frightened of outside forces coming in and things calming down? Or is it just a macho response of we’re real men, we can beat down our own house into calm? Doubling down will prove their system is the correct one? I don’t understand the local forces and they are frightening.

  66. 66
    RK says:

    @Omnes Depending on the altercation the cop could legitimately claim Brown was a serious threat. And, as I said, I don’t think the evidence is going to allow for a definitive view of events. Time will tell, and juries can do anything.

  67. 67
    Elie says:

    @karen:

    Whatever happens, this guy’s life is fucked.

    He will definitely never work as a cop again. After the splash about this ends for the right wing, he will have to live with himself. There is no “fame” waiting for him. That of course, sounds easy compared to what the Brown family has to live with, but I doubt it will be easy for him. Likely, he is not highly educated or prepared to do anything else. He will be looking over his shoulder for the rest of his life. His buddies are going to forget about him and many of them will be losing their jobs and keeping in touch with him probably will not be something they want to do.

    I hope they have taken his service revolver from him when they took his badge and put him on leave. (HA) If not, he has it and stranger things have happened.

  68. 68
    🚸 Martin says:

    @Roger Moore: Nah, only Brietbarts will go there. Prior to Obama everyone thought we had the Tom Clancy superhero commando teams but you wouldn’t have known it. Obama has been much more aggressive with them and very successful overall. The media love these stories. They’re not going to discourage the next guy from continuing to do this stuff.

  69. 69
    Roger Moore says:

    @🚸 Martin:
    They aren’t going to disparage the troops, but I expect them to criticize the intelligence failure that led to a raid on the wrong location. They’ll find a way to make it all Obama’s fault while praising the actual troops to the skies.

  70. 70
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @Hungry Joe: You’re thinking of the North Hollywood Shootout. Around 2000 rounds were fired during the incident.

    Local patrol officers at the time were typically armed with their standard issue 9 mm or .38 Special pistols, with some having a 12-gauge shotgun available in their cars. Phillips and Mătăsăreanu carried illegally modified fully automatic Norinco Type 56 S-1s, a Bushmaster XM15 Dissipator, and a HK-91 rifle with high capacity drum magazines and ammunition capable of penetrating vehicles and police Kevlar vests. The bank robbers wore body armor which successfully deflected bullets and shotgun shells fired by the responding patrolmen. SWAT eventually arrived bearing sufficient firepower, and they commandeered an armored truck to evacuate the wounded. Several officers also appropriated AR-15 rifles from a nearby firearms dealer. The incident sparked debate on the need for patrol officers to upgrade their capabilities in similar situations in the future.[4]

    Their body armor protected them from the SWAT team’s AR-15s…

    Sometimes the police need high-power weapons. Most of the time, though, they need to think clearly and not assume that (seemingly) nearly everyone they encounter is a deadly threat. There also, it seems to me, needs to be a broader dividing line between words and shooting. E.g. why couldn’t the two cops be trained to throw a net over Kajieme Powell if he was so close that they felt he was a threat to their lives? Why is a pistol (or Tazer) always the first and only choice in these situations? Shouldn’t we moved beyond that by now? And if the choice is to shoot, why is the full clip the default?

    :-(

    Cheers,
    Scot.

  71. 71
    trollhattan says:

    @West of the Cascades: The worms are yelling “Stop eating people!” at each other.

  72. 72
    Fluke bucket says:

    @Cacti: Doraville……A touch of country in the city! :-)

  73. 73
    🚸 Martin says:

    @I’mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet: Worth noting that only two people died in that shootout – the suspects, and one was self-inflicted.

    The police didn’t need AR-15s. They needed a single sniper.

  74. 74
    Hungry Joe says:

    @I’mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet: Right — North Hollywood.

    I’m fine with a police force having a small handful of high-powered weapons locked away, to be issued to a select few specially trained officers in those way-beyond-rare instances when they’re needed. Chances are they’ll never be used, but they’ll be there in case there’s a North Hollywood-esque situation or yet another zombie TV series.

  75. 75
    🚸 Martin says:

    @Cacti: Doraville has 41 police officers for 8,500 people. About 5 per 1000 residents. My city of 250,000 has 1 officer per 1300 residents. We have half as many sex offenders *total* (not per capita), and rather than ranked 39th safest in the state, we’re safest in the nation. Our PD does not have an armored vehicle, but they do come out and help us when we want to block off the neighborhood for parties, and they take the school kids for year-end bike rides (with motorcycle escorts for road crossings). I’ve never seen them in tactical gear, even during one of the aforementioned terrorism incidents. The SWAT gear is solid black, IIRC.

    Clearly we’re doing something wrong.

  76. 76
    Belafon says:

    @Carolinus: Let’s see, the president is once again willing to go into a country if he thinks it’s necessary. About the only thing they could argue is why doesn’t he invade Mexico.

  77. 77
    Felanius Kootea says:

    @karen: The KKK is fundraising for a reward for him, so that’s close.

  78. 78
    Belafon says:

    @🚸 Martin: Require your police force to pay for itself. Everything you describe will change pretty quickly.

  79. 79
    GregB says:

    Any word on when Officer Go Fuckyourself gets his own show on Fox News?

  80. 80
    Gravie says:

    My cousin, a lawyer who never met a right-wing idea he didn’t like, actually agreed with my FB post about the dangers of an uber-militarized police force. It may be that the events in Ferguson, and other places, are shifting the “conservative” paradigm

  81. 81
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @scav:

    Oh, I completely agree, this situation didn’t start last night with Lieutentant GoFuckYourself, or Saturday a week ago with the murder of Michael Brown. Nothing we’ve seen in the past 10-11 days would be unfolding as it has if the Ferguson PD had a force more representative of their community, if they required members of the force to actually reside in Ferguson, if they had provided training in how to defuse a confrontation without resorting to deadly force, if they had been more judicious about using all those shiny new toys from the DoD, if if if, a million ifs. The way they have handled, or, more accurately, mishandled, the entire situation from the first exchange between Officer Darren Wilson and young Michael Brown through the now-routine nightly overreactions to citizens and journalists exercising their First Amendment rights … it is a shame and a disgrace. And you are right, it’s clearly long-standing and systemic. And I would be very much surprised if it were restricted to a few rogue PDs in greater St. Louis. I imagine this shit would happen pretty much anywhere in the country, assuming a similar spark to the tinderbox.

    I think POTUS and the AG get it. I hope they can do something productive in their remaining years of influence.

  82. 82
    efgoldman says:

    @Carolinus:

    I honestly don’t get how it’s a bad thing?

    Of course. You deal in facts and logic and nuance. You’re not a RWNJ.

  83. 83
    gbear says:

    @RK:

    Depending on the altercation the cop could legitimately claim Brown was a serious threat.

    No matter what happened, the cops will insist Brown was a serious threat.

    Brown can’t tell his side. He’s been murdered.

  84. 84
    Smeh says:

    This is why the sacred 2nd Amendment is a worthless joke. It’s probably safe to say many of the protestors in Ferguson own guns. So why not bring them out when you confront (what you percieve rightly or wrongly) as a mortal threat to your liberty? Because you sensibly know that if you go up against even a pissant police force you will die.

    Imagine walking around with a pistol in Ferguson tonight or even open carrying a semi-auto rifle. How long until you are either dead or arrested?

  85. 85
    JPL says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: I don’t think Brown would lie in the streets of Atlanta for five hours. As you know we have a lot of shootings and they are handled differently. BTW, I don’t know if my town has a tank, but Sandy Springs does and they use it for fairs.
    In Valdosta that is a different story. The young man discovered in the gym rolled up in a carpet, dead, seems like a cover up. During the autopsy that the parents had performed his organs were missing. Is it possible they were removed because they showed damage? I don’t know.

  86. 86
    El Caganer says:

    @Smeh: Sorta depends on whether or not you’re black, doesn’t it?

  87. 87
    Shalimar says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): Wilson’s version of events is that Brown reached for his gun and gained enough control to actually fire it at Wilson’s hip though Wilson changed the trajectory just in time for it to miss him. It wasn’t clear from what I read whether Brown actually got the gun and Wilson pushed it away or whether it was in Wilson’s hand and Brown used leverage/strength to control it and cause it to fire. It sounded like the first case, which raises the question of how Wilson got the gun back as Brown started to run.

    The other key point in Wilson’s version is that Brown turned around, started yelling “you won’t shoot me”, and then started charging relentlessly, like a guy on drugs. He had no choice but to shoot, with a guy who had already tried to grab his gun now aggressively charging him. How could an officer feel his life was in danger from a suspect with his hands up? Easy answer, the officer says the suspect’s hands weren’t up and he was actually charging a police officer he knew had a gun which had just been fired.

    Wilson’s story doesn’t make much sense and doesn’t match the eyewitnesses we know of, but it would make the shooting justifiable in the eyes of most people if it were true.

    Ps I think the officers who responded know what really happened and Wilson’s story was concocted over the next few hours. It has too much of a “let’s include all the elements that could possibly make this justifiable” feel to it while still having several points where what he alleges Brown to have done doesn’t make any sense at all.

  88. 88
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): I doubt Jesus is very concerned with spelling. Earthly pedants, like us, perhaps we are.

  89. 89
    GregB says:

    One dot that no one has connected is the tired old right wing talking point about affirmative action.

    Remember the one about how white men can’t get a job because all of the jobs were given to to unqualified Blacks because of affirmative action.

    Every time I hear about police departments they are 90% white even in black areas.

    That was one powerful myth they helped to promote.

  90. 90
    JPL says:

    @Shalimar: Wilson’s life was not in danger when he fired shots when Brown was running. The police admit that he fired at Brown’s back.

  91. 91
    burnspbesq says:

    Cole, has officer Wilson been charged with anything yet?

    No? If not, then what legal basis exists for taking him into custody?

    Why are you unwilling to let the grand jury process play out the way it’s designed to play out?

    If he gets indicted, he’ll be arrested. If not, he won’t. That how it works.

    Do you really want to play into his hands and make him a sympathetic figure by not affording him due process?

  92. 92
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @JPL:

    Closer to home, Doraville (as someone mentioned upthread) has a tank and an apparently very enthusiastic SWAT unit. Check out the dog.

    I’m not sure exactly which of Doraville’s 8,500 residents is supposed to feel safer looking at those pictures.

    (Disclosure: I lived in Doraville for many years until I moved 15 miles north about a decade ago. The only thing I can say about the Doraville cops is that they couldn’t be bothered with me when my apartment was ransacked or when my car was, repeatedly, vandalized — all of which explains, in part, why I made the decision to move.)

  93. 93
    JPL says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: Wow! I know we have a SWAT team but not sure what goodies they have. The facebook page didn’t help.

  94. 94
    Joey Giraud says:

    @Shalimar:

    Cops have lied time and time again, yet some people will continue to believe even their most absurd lies, as if they must believe cops are agents of God or something.

    When I was younger I knew three police cadets. They ranged from a merely angry, resentful asshole to a full blown sociopath. The glee one exhibited when describing breaking bones with his special nightstick will forever stay in my memory.

    It’s like we take our most emotionally unstable young men and give them power and weapons and say “go have fun” on the general public.

  95. 95
    Smeh says:

    @El Caganer: True but given the right circumstanses they dont really discriminate, Kent State.

  96. 96
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @JPL:

    BTW, AFAICT, that Doraville SWAT unit looks lily-white. And I know there is a sizeable number of minorities living in Doraville, probably majority-minority at this point. So again, a force that appears to be unrepresentative of the community it is supposed to serve.

  97. 97
    Shalimar says:

    @JPL: Citation please to Ferguson police admitting shots were fired while Brown was running away. Wilson’s talk radio call-in friend was careful to say Brown caused the shot in the car and Wilson was chasing but didn’t start firing until Brown turned around and charged him. That seems to be their accepted exonerating version, so I doubt Ferguson police would contradict it. If they did, I’m guessing it was last week before they settled on a story.

    I was wondering all last week how Wilson could possibly say he was in fear of his life from an unarmed teenager standing 30 feet away. Apparently, they found the only explanation that isn’t laughable.

  98. 98
    tom says:

    I’m almost tempted to say put that guy back out there, just with out a weapon (gun or otherwise). He’ll have to make use of his extensive vocabulary, without the intimidation factor of pointing a loaded gun at someone at the same time. Odds are slim, but maybe he’ll learn something because right now I’m fairly certain he’s reclining at home letting his hate stew in a Hannity/Limbaugh marathon.

  99. 99
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @Shalimar: NY Times:

    As Officer Wilson got out of his car, the men were running away. The officer fired his weapon but did not hit anyone, according to law enforcement officials.

  100. 100
    wuzzat says:

    @Catherine D.:
    The cop in my family didn’t abuse his own wife, as far as I know, but he definitely did everything in his power to allow his drunkard brother to keep beating his.

  101. 101
    Shalimar says:

    @Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism: Thanks. Interesting article, who the law enforcement officials worked for isn’t clear, but it does seem very clear that the account Wilson’s friend Josie gave was bullshit.

  102. 102
    am says:

    @gbear:

    My bad, I did not. However I think the videotapers behaved that’s unacceptable in any situation, and egregiously stupid and offensive in this one. Still not as bad as pointing the weapon imo.

  103. 103
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Elie:

    When we realized how much we spent on the Iraq war — how much it cost us in lives and treasure — we didn’t know THIS cost, did we?

    These costs don’t fit well onto a spreadeheet.

    Therefore, the modern bidness school gradumate can’t figure them out. The only thing they value is numbers with a $ in front of it.

  104. 104
    Anne Laurie says:

    @scav:

    If they lack resources (other than apparently bang bangs and tanks), if they lack training, if they lack manpower well, if they lack community good will and trust, who’s fault is that? And, who exactly’s not asking for additional outside resources so that they’re not so frazzled and overworked?

    This has been covered here, earlier — Ferguson is one of several dozen (90?) separate little “towns” around St. Louis, every one of which has to pay for their own cops and their own training. Which they do — surprise! — largely by collecting “traffic violations” and related fines, since of course the handful of local bigshots running every single one of these fiefdoms isn’t eager to assess taxes on themselves. On the other hand, those “retired” military weapons are available free for the asking (training to use them properly, not so much). Under-trained, over-stretched law enforcement officials + military-grade ordinance, facing down individuals in a community that views them as enforcers for what can feel like an open-air prison, is the well-documented recipe for “urban unrest”.

    In a sense, the local government in Ferguson and its neighbors are like medieval barons — they figure the voting “community”, the taxpayers & business owners, don’t care how the serfs are treated as long as taxes stay low and nobody in the ‘nice’ neighborhoods has to worry about being robbed or assaulted.

    The cure is probably going to involve some form of municipal reincorporation / centralization, but the current class of “barons” is going to fight any such moves tooth and nail, because it’s going to interfere with a system that they perceive as working very well for them. They’d rather be big fish in small ponds, which is “logical”, if neither community-minded or viable over the long term.

  105. 105
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism:

    The officer fired his weapon but did not hit anyone, according to law enforcement officials.

    So, let me guess…the bullets that hit Michael Brown came from…where? Afghanistan? Ukraine? El Salvador? Compton?

  106. 106
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Do you really want to play into his hands and make him a sympathetic figure by not affording him due process?

    I’m afraid you’ve bought into this notion that “due process” is apportioned equally in this country.

    Michael Brown might have something to say about that. If he were alive to talk.

  107. 107
    Shalimar says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: The bullets that hit Michael Brown came after he turned around. The Times reporter doesn’t seem to realize that firing at a fleeing suspect is still deadly force even when your aim sucks. The deadly shots came when Wilson got close enough to Brown (who had turned to face him) that he didn’t miss.

  108. 108
    amk says:

    @burnspbesq:

    by not affording him due process?

    you mean like the one the cops extend to black ‘suspects’?

  109. 109
    am says:

    @Dave:

    Totally appreciate your point, and agree. Hard to see why an AR-15 is called for at all in that situation. Unprofessional/unacceptable conduct (probably correctly dealt with via suspension). Absolutely incompetent/dangerous behavior raising his weapon, which I consider a fireable failure of judgement.

    Thank you for your underappreciated hard work at the trauma center and service in Afghanistan.

  110. 110
    lurker dean says:

    Elon was just interviewed on Al Jazeera and was awesome. He noted how the media is not telling the whole story and are ignoring how the people of Ferguson are being terrorized in their own neighborhood by the people who are supposed to protect them. At the end of the segment the oddly cheerful reporter asked Elon if he was happy that he got a chance to tell his side, as if he was doing Elon a big favor. Elon said no he wasn’t because he had much more to say. Go Elon!

  111. 111
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @WaterGirl: Well, in a brothel, perhaps that’s the response of a professional, but from a police officer, well, not so much.

  112. 112
    Shalimar says:

    @Shalimar: In other words, their point seems to be “the shots he was firing as Brown ran away didn’t hit him, so that shouldn’t count as intent to murder. Only the ones fired after Brown supposedly lunged at him should count, and Wilson felt threatened then”. Their point makes no sense at all, firing at Brown both before and after he turned around makes it obvious Wilson was trying to kill him. But whatever makes the Times happy.

  113. 113
    Ruckus says:

    @WaterGirl:
    Cops shoot unarmed people handcuffed and laying on the ground, in the back, and get away with it. (Bart cop in SF/Oakland area) Cops have always been like this. Not all of them of course but the crappy ones seem to always outnumber the good ones, and then there is that fat blue line not to cross.

  114. 114
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Shalimar:

    The Times reporter doesn’t seem to realize that firing at a fleeing suspect is still deadly force even when your aim sucks.

    This, frankly, defies belief. That the reporter doesn’t grasp what “deadly force” is, because even if you’re a bad shot, you still fired a weapon that is designed to kill. Which would, even for the most clueless adult, be obviously “deadly force”.

    But then again, I’m not desperately trying to be “even handed” while describing a case of cold blooded murder.

  115. 115
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Elie:

    When we realized how much we spent on the Iraq war — how much it cost us in lives and treasure — we didn’t know THIS cost, did we?

    I think Americans quickly had a sense that the returning veterans with visible injuries and PTSD would be a gift that keeps giving for the next 50 or 60 years. At least, people working in the VA knew it early on, and I can’t imagine people in military communities weren’t aware of it.

    I don’t think it was obvious that the decade-plus of shit from Iraq and Afghanistan would also dump military surplus hardware and anti-terrorism dollars on small town police departments and turn them into occupation forces. Though perhaps it became more obvious during things like Occupy, and was probably very obvious to minority communities. That just sort of crept up.

  116. 116
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    They don’t seem to get any kind of conflict resolution training or learn how to de-escalate a situation.

    This. The Brown shooting. The other shooting in St Louis. The thing in Orlando where the PD killed someone in a bar, guns blazing, because the first thing they did was fire their Tasers and that didn’t work.

    There’s a pattern, and it’s one of hardware and training that says “start with something semi-deadly, then if that doesn’t work, fire off whatever you got, and we made sure you got a lot.”

    That’s not policing.

  117. 117
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @pseudonymous in nc: As a number of people have commented over the past few days – if you have to demand that people respect your authority, you don’t really have authority. These cops have but no real authority; I can’t say for certain but I strongly suspect that they don’t have it because they haven’t been active in the community earning it. They just demand it.

  118. 118
    dww44 says:

    @RK: Haven’t read all the rest of the comments, but Lawrence O’Donnell put that NYTimes article and the “conflicting” testimony out to pasture on his show this evening. That piece of his was a thing of beauty and I so hope the NY Times Editor/s were watching and print some sort of retraction tomorrow. That “article” was lazy reporting and a sterling example of a publication (which should know better) accepting at face value statements from law enforcement and then reprinting them as established fact.

  119. 119
    J R in WV says:

    I read somewhere today that “they” are saying that the LEO was actually beaten by the deceased before the gunplay began. I can’t help but feel odd that if this is the case, how come it took a week for them to tell anhyone about it.

    The young man who was killed was a HS graduate enrolled in an engineering program – it takes a monumentally stupid person to attack an armed cop with your bare hands, or someone under the influence of “bath salts” or angel dust or crazed beyond belief. Not your typical college student, at all.

    So I’m stuck with believing that Officer Wilson was so enraged that a black punk would diss him in front of people right there in HIS town that he attacked and killed young Mr. Brown, shot him down like he was a mad dog, not a small black kid.

    I also am stuck thinking that (ex-)Officer Wilson should be in a jail way on the other side of town, and should have been interviewed by a dozen different expert interviewers from different LEO organizations, like the State Police, the Sheriff, the FBI, BATFE, etc. none of whom should have access to each other’s interviews. Then see what is consistent with witnesses, what is internally consistent, etc. Then see about indictments and trials.

    I hope he has as happy time with all that as the nice Mr. Zimmerman has had so far.

  120. 120
    Plantsmantx says:

    NYT: “But others say that Mr. Brown was not moving and may even have had his hands up when he was killed.”…

    What? “…may have”? When did it become difficult to tell when someone has their hands raised in a sign of surrender, and when they don’t?

  121. 121
    Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name) says:

    @J R in WV:

    So I’m stuck with believing that Officer Wilson was so enraged that a black punk would diss him in front of people right there in HIS town that he attacked and killed young Mr. Brown, shot him down like he was a mad dog, not a small black kid.

    Absent really fucking compelling evidence to the contrary, that is what I conclude as well.

  122. 122
    jc says:

    Jeez, do the St. Louis police receive any community interaction training at all? Way too many rouge assholes with itchy trigger fingers.

  123. 123
    Aimai says:

    @Elie: fallacy of the excluded middle. Why not both? Darren wilson committed murder under cover of authority and he should pay for that. The entire police force is incompetent, malevolent, and corrupt and needs to be cleaned from top to bottom.

  124. 124
    Aimai says:

    @burnspbesq: im confused. Lots of people get arrested and booked without being in front of a grand jury.

  125. 125
    J R in WV says:

    @J R in WV:

    Further, let me say that I don’t doubt that Officer Wilson has facial damage now, today, broken oribital and all. I am also sure that any photo taken of Officer Wilson immediately after the “incident” (murder!) won’t show any facial damage at all.

    I’m thinking that a quick-thinking professional co-worker of the kind and gentle officer smacked him in the face, hard, a couple of times, because the co-worker saw that Officer Wilson was going to need to be able to show that he was smacked around by Mr. Brown very soon now!

    Perhaps we should examine the fingers and knuckels of his co-workers closely, if time can be spared from the rioting. Er, crowd control, I mean crowd control…

    Thata is all.

  126. 126
    Chris says:

    Now how about the cops who gassed Al Jazeera, arrested Lowery and Reilly, who called all the protestors fucking animals, etc. It’s too much to ask that Officer Wilson be taken into custody, apparently.

    Anyone up for a RICO case against the police department?

  127. 127
    mak says:

    @mark:

    Like the late writer Ed Abbey said, policework “attracts the brute mentality”. So you would think, there would be systems in place to make this less of a problem. Instead, we give them M-16s, grenade launchers, flame throwers, and tanks without any accountability.

    This, I think, is the essence of the problem. Rather than policing the police, we encourage the bad behavior, either by neglect or by design. Cop culture needs to be neutered and brought to heel. Cop cameras, stronger educational requirements, psychological screening and a shift to community policing would get us most of the way there.

    Bigger problem, of course, is getting those with the wherewithal to do something about it to recognize that it is actually a problem, especially in places like Ferguson, MO, where the attitude of a good chunk of the (white) citizenry is precisely reflected by that of Officer Ray “Go Fuck Yourself” Albers.

  128. 128
    Bendal says:

    @gbear: The latest right wing talking point I’ve seen has been that Wilson suffered “severe facial injuries” inflicted by Brown, a shot was fired inside the car, at which point Brown began running, then for some reason turned and ‘charged’ Wilson, forcing the policeman to kill him.

    Except, Brown’s knuckles showed no bruising from the autopsy reports, Wilson showed no evidence of any kind of severe facial injury immediately after the shooting, and in order for Brown to have been shot in the top of his head while ‘charging’, he would have to be running with his upper body parallel to the ground while looking straight down at the pavement.

    If a shot was fired inside the patrol car (perhaps indicating a struggle for Wilson’s weapon), then there is a round somewhere in that vehicle, or damage caused by it, or a hole in the holster, or the seat, and powder residue everywhere. For that matter, why is there no photo of Wilson’s ‘severe facial injuries’ since such a photo would basically invalidate what the eyewitnesses have been saying about what happened that afternoon.

  129. 129
    Chris says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    They get training, but the training is, Demand compliance and back it up by force if necessary. They don’t seem to get any kind of conflict resolution training or learn how to de-escalate a situation.

    There was a pretty good article on Cracked.com a couple weeks ago by a hostage negotiator that had me thinking, man, these people and people with their profiles should be involved in a hell of a lot more. Among other things, it’d be nice to see more attempts at defusing violent situations rather than adding to the violence to prove who’s got the bigger wiener.

    There’s also a fairly good passage in The Godfather (book, not movie) where the author muses about the police mentality, the way cops “believe in the law in a curiously innocent way” not just because they’re trained to but because it’s the source of their power/authority, and how the corrupt ones rationalize their way to corruption. (It’s a great book on the whole, really).

  130. 130
    Chris says:

    @Elie:

    We WANT their protection and to interact with them — to help them and ourselves… How can we make this happen?

    How hard is it to train and indoctrinate them to, y’know, understand that “serve and protect” isn’t just something that looks good on a car door?

    I mean, we seem to have been fairly successful in creating a professional military, meaning one which, whatever its faults, has absorbed the principle of civilian control and doesn’t run amok whenever someone they don’t like wins elections (unlike many, possibly most armies in the world even today). How we did it, I don’t know – I leave the sociological explanations to those who know better – but why is it that it seems so impossible to imprint the same notion of “you’re here to serve the public, not to rule over it” ethic onto the police?

  131. 131
    pseudonymous in nc says:

    @mak:

    Cop culture needs to be neutered and brought to heel. Cop cameras, stronger educational requirements, psychological screening and a shift to community policing would get us most of the way there.

    You’d need to hire an lot of new cops and pay off a lot of existing ones, because Officer Fuckyou Tazenshoot wants his shiny hurty toys and the power to use them against whoever disrespects his authoritah, will have a hissy fit if take them away, and there are thousands like him.

  132. 132
    Berial says:

    Whenever I see two antagonistic groups (police and protesters in this case) going through the motions of dealing with each other over a period of more than 2-3 days I always think of this quote from Red October.

    “This business will get out of control. It will get out of control and we’ll be lucky to live through it.”

    Why? Because the longer the event goes on the more chance someone is going to do something stupid, either through incompetence, exhaustion, or pure hate.

  133. 133
    Chris says:

    @pseudonymous in nc:

    The way the political mindset is now, I have a sneaking suspicion that if anything like this was ever tried… instead of hiring a lot of new cops to replace the bad ones and rebuilding the police departments in a more professional image, the powers that be would simply fill the vacuum by bringing in a bunch of private contractors (hello, Blackwater). Privatize in the name of “efficiency” and “streamlining” and other cliches, like with education and some other things. And that at the end of the day, the forces policing cities would, impossibly, actually be even LESS professional, effective and accountable than the ones we have now.

  134. 134
    Berial says:

    @Chris: So you’re saying our future is less “Minority Report” and more “Robocop”.

  135. 135
    Lurker says:

    “The unidentified St. Ann, Mo. police officer, who told one man his name was “go f— yourself,” (…).”

    Why is it that, in every reported encounter between the Ferguson police and the protesters, the police systematically use the “F” word? To rile the protesters? A little civility would go a long way toward diffusing tensions. It seems to me that the Ferguson police corps is composed of a bunch of thugs.

  136. 136
    Chris says:

    @Berial:

    Based on the modern cycle of “cut taxes, deregulate, prostitute the political system even more to the rich, refuse to raise taxes to pay for what society needs…” I’m thinking that Continuum TV show’s a pretty good bet of what the future looks like. (Government ends up completely bankrupt and needing to beg the corporations – the only place with any money left – for a bailout, which they provide, at a price that’s basically the end of democracy).

  137. 137
    Paul in KY says:

    @Roger Moore: That’s the jist of their training. Well summed, Roger.

  138. 138
    Paul in KY says:

    @Elie: He’d like you to think that.

  139. 139
    Paul in KY says:

    @I’mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet: Because he could have thrown that knife like a ninja & hit one of them right between the eyes. Have seen it happen in many movies.

  140. 140
    Paul in KY says:

    @burnspbesq: A lot of people are arrested before the grand jury does their stuff.

  141. 141
    Paul in KY says:

    @Omnes Omnibus (the first of his name): That’s my take on it.

  142. 142
    JPS says:

    @Cacti: As others have noted, the officer has been been suspended without pay.
    But … according to a report last night, he wasn’t suspended for brandishing the assault weapon but rather for his language. So apparently you can threaten a whole crowd of people as long as you don’t use the f-word (and get recorded doing it).

  143. 143
    Interrobang says:

    Ever since this whole thing started, I’ve had two lines from a Dead Kennedys song running through my head nearly constantly:

    The police started a riot down at the courthouse again
    Running amok, spilling blood, bashing heads

    (From “DMSO”)

    The longer I live, the more Jello Effing Biafra looks like a damn prophet.

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