Sunday, January 25, 2009

Police Brutality

Allegations of police brutality are not new. Every country has its own serious issues on this subject. Police officers are known for having created their own society with its own rules whereby, as if by law, they all cover for, and support each other in times of crisis.

On one level this is good because it gives them additional courage to take on criminals but, on the other, this turns them into a group who think that they live by their own rules and, sometimes, above the law.

Unfortunately, this police belief in their own invincibility, often written into law, leaves citizens feeling unprotected and exposed to all kinds of police brutality.

These Officer should be exposed and held responsible for any form of brutality. Until reform of the justice systems occurs such officers will continue feeling they can operate as if they were invincible.

The Following is a repost from Kendra Anderson. She is a second year magazine production student from Stafford Va

The judicial system is being held under a magnifying glass, as civilians are being abused and killed for unjust reasons. Many police and correction officers are abusing their privileges and taking advantage of their occupation. Officers are supposed to be the people enforcing the law, not abusing it.

Johannes Mehserle, a former Bay Area Rapid Transit Officer, is one of those who decided to take matters into his own hands. According to, Mehserle shot and killed 22- year-old Oscar Grant at a BART subway station in Oakland, Calif. on New Year's Day.

Trust is something that many Americans, including myself have always had in the judicial system. Everyone believed that police officers have a duty to promote justice and be advocates for peace.

However, I am not oblivious to the unfair practices that certain officers chose to use on certain groups of people specifically, African-American men.

The wrong doings of many law enforcers are pushed under the rug and most often covered up. As a result, it never reaches the public.

The Director of Amnesty International, Dalia Hashad, said, "The delay in this critical part of the investigation hints at the callousness to the worth of human life to a public that is all too familiar with racial profiling, police brutality and cover-ups."

Mehserle and his attorney expect to, "raise self defense arguments because he was responding to a brawl and no one had been searched for weapons before he arrived at the train station."

The Grant shooting was caught on video and many viewed it on including myself. I was baffled while viewing an unarmed black male treated with excessive aggression and later shot in the back. What did Grant do wrong? He was cooperative as he lay facedown on the ground, not knowing that he would never get up.

It's sad to say that race starts to play a factor in wondering why Grant was treated in this manner. Although race is not always the issue when it comes to police brutality, it still does exist whether society wants to recognize it or not.

All police officials do not act in this matter, but a more strict protocol should be enforced so incidents like this will stop occurring. Certain situations cause for police officers to defend themselves and retaliate, but if the person is unarmed and cooperating, how is that justified?

It is police officers job to mediate situations not escalate them. What qualifications allow a police officer to shoot a person? The line between self-defense and manslaughter has become blurred.

Police brutality is an issue, from the Rodney King civil case in Los Angeles to the Martin Lee Anderson case in Florida, and this most recently with Oscar Grant.

Lately, it has been hard to pinpoint who the real criminals are.

Corrections Officer William J Edwards Arrested for Burglary


A Lee County Sheriff's Office Corrections Officer was arrested early Sunday morning.

Fort Myers Police went to O'Brien Auto Mall on 2850 Colonial Boulevard at 2:18 Sunday morning after somebody called police to report a possible burglary in progress. When they arrived they saw two men inside the car lot's fenced area.

When stopped, at first the two men denied any wrongdoing. Officers then searched the area and found a round nylon bag containing 18 lug nuts. The officers discovered the two suspects entered the compound with burglary tools and had removed the lug nuts from a 2008 blue Subaru Impreza.

The two suspects were arrested and charged with burglary of a structure, possession of burglary tools with intent to use, and petty theft.

One of those arrested was 23-year-old Lee County Sheriff's Office Corrections Officer William J. Edwards.

The Lee County Sheriff's Office said Corrections Officer Edwards began work with the Sheriff's Office on October 23, 2007.

Corrections Officer Edwards was immediately placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an Internal Affairs Investigation.

In a statement Sheriff Mike Scott said, "While disappointing to say the least... the events of this weekend involving a Fort Myers police officer and a Lee County corrections officer being arrested proves the resolve of local law enforcement that nobody is above the law."

Edwards was released from jail Sunday morning.

Former Detective Richard Dorman Accused of Sexually Assaulting Little Girl


A former detective accused of sexually assaulting a child was told by a judge on Friday to not have any contact with the girl.

Richard Dorman, a 59-year-old retired Harris County sheriff's deputy, is charged with aggravated sexual assault of a child under the age of 14.

A judge found probable cause to make the charge stick on Friday.

A girl has claimed that Dorman started touching her when she was 8-years-old. She told investigators that Dorman repeatedly touched her private areas.

"Any time a victim in our community, especially someone at the age of our complainant in this case, which is 9-years-old, we take that very seriously," Assistant District Attorney Justin Wood said. "We will do whatever it takes to make sure she's protected."

Dorman spent 26 years as a deputy. He retired six years ago as a detective.

He and the girl making the accusations lived in the Shore Acres community. Her father, who is not identifying, said the families were close and that the girl would spend the night at Dorman's house, along with other children.

"He would do what he would do when she was there spending the night," the father said.

A woman who said she was Dorman's wife said, "It's all made up -- retaliation. (He's) great with kids. Everybody in the neighborhood over there called him Paw Paw."

Dorman's bond was set at $30,000. The judge warned Dorman not to go near his accuser if he posts bond, even if it means moving to a new address. He remained in jail Friday afternoon.

Dorman's attorney said because he just received the case, he was not ready to comment.

More Information: Court Document: Texas Vs. Richard Allen Dorman