Saturday, March 19, 2011

This is what divorces police and populace.

Mother of three arrested for taking picutres of tourist attraction outside of airport.

It has taken me three days to calm down enough to write upon this story. Suffice to say the police in this town abused their authority in every way that they could without being thrown in jail themselves(though they should be in a just world). I'm pressed to figure out which of this woman's rights were not violated, I wouldn't be surprised to find at this point that the police moved a platoon of National Guard into her house without her consent. This is also the clearest argument I've seen for not giving police blanket immunity from personal civil charges. Sadly I don't want to be on this side of the argument about disciplining police officers, however there are to many cases where prosecutors have swept under the rug things that would get a private citizen put in prison even if we "made a mistake". 

Police and other law enforcement have an even greater duty to follow the laws they would enforce upon others, this leaves the wronged citizen with little recourse but a civil suit that is only costly to taxpayers not the rouge police or covering cronies.. I know that criminals lie about police treatment of them and current laws are an overreaction to spurious criminal complaints. What officers who cover for a fellow officer who is clearly in the wrong fail to recognize is that they erode the credibility of all police when they do.

I once heard of an officer who did write speeding tickets to other cops. When asked about "professional courtesy" he would reply that professional courtesy was not breaking the law. Just as the foundation for all medicine is "do no harm", if the foundation for all law enforcement is not "obey the law" then society crumbles.

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