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Teams of police officers armed with submachine guns and bomb-sniffing dogs will soon be patrolling the busiest parts of New York City subways as part of a major increase in regional security funding.
The subway initiative is one use of the $151.2 million in new grant money from the Department of Homeland Security to transit systems in New York, Connecticut and New Jersey. Last year, they received $98 million.
Explaining the increase, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said law enforcement officials in the three states "have to deal with vulnerabilities and threats in this region that are really second to none." ......
Hope Steffey's night started with a call to police for help. It ended with her face down, naked, and sobbing on a jail cell floor. Now, the sheriff's deputies from Stark County, Ohio who allegedly used excessive force during a strip search 15 months ago face a federal lawsuit, and recently released video won’t help their case.
Steffey's ordeal with the Stark County sheriff's deputies began after her cousin called 9-1-1 claiming Steffey had been assaulted by another one of their cousins. When a Stark County police officer arrived, he asked to see Steffey's driver's license. But instead of handing over her own ID, she mistakenly turned over her dead sister's license, which she contends she keeps in her wallet as a memento. That's when the situation became complicated.
"Hope was not treated as a victim," her lawyer told WKYC News. "The officer said to her 'shut up about your dead sister.'"
Eventually, Steffey was arrested and taken to the Stark County Jail, charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. But once in custody, her attorney says seven jail workers, male and female, forcibly removed Steffey of all her clothes, including her undergarments, while she lay face down in handcuffs. Local news footage shows Steffey wailing, asking "What are you doing?!?"
"And you have to ask yourself, what was the purpose of the strip search?" said Steffey's lawyer. "What was the necessity of it? This was a disorderly conduct claim."
The lawsuit says that Steffey remained in the cell for six hours and wrapped herself in toilet paper to stay warm. During that time, she was not allowed to use a phone or seek medical assistance for injuries she accrued that night, including a cracked tooth, bulging disc, and bruises.
Although the sheriff's policy requires officers conducting any strip search to be of the same ***, the sheriff contends that the tactic used on Steffey was not actually a strip search. He also questions the validiy of the events leading up to Steffey’s arrest.
Once shown the exclusive video, Steffey’s husband was in disbelief. "You don't treat people like this," he said. "I don't think murderers are treated like this."
This video is from WKYC News, broadcast February 1, 2008
1Route24 wrote:A young intelligent High School African-American male who is a star football player, with a 3.2 GPA was the victim of police brutality. The young male was mistakenly taken down to the ground by a police officer, which caused his jaw to break. To top that off, the officer realized he was the wrong person then took off and ran. Now, the 16 yr old teen's whole football career is in jeopardy!
Maybe I should start keeping track of events by which Amendment they break. File this one under the First. A woman is at a peaceful protest against, of all things, totalitarianism in the US:
(link to ABC News)
Videotaped footage of the protests shows Ritter standing next to a police officer using a bullhorn to announce that the protests would be permitted to continue as long as they remained peaceful.
Ritter is later seen on the tape walking away from a line of officers when she is apparently shot in the leg with a rubber bullet.
She then turns toward the officers and asks, "Did you shoot me? A lady in a suit? Who has been walking peaceably in front of you for half an hour and you shot me when my back was turned?"
Ritter turns to a crowd of protesters and says, "Well, you all saw it. They have been watching me for a half hour. They know I'm not armed." At the request of a photographer, she displays for the camera a fresh welt on the back of her leg, where it appears she has just been shot by a rubber bullet.
An audible barrage of rubber-bullet fire follows, as protesters are heard screaming in fear and pain, and yelling at officers, "What the [expletive] was that? Why did you do that to us?"
The camera then finds Ritter again, crouched alone in the street under her sign as rubber bullets continue to fly around her. She said a rubber bullet pierced her foam-board sign and struck her forehead.
A civilian review board investigated law enforcement response to the protests and found no criminal misconduct. [or course]
In a bizarre turn of events, someone videotaped the police watching the video of the woman being shot:
"The lady in the red dress," Kallman says on the tape, to cheers and laughter. "I don't know who got her, but it went right through the sign and hit her smack dab in the middle of the head." Another officer can be heard off-camera, asking, "Do I get a piece of her red dress?" Ritter said the tape had completely changed her take on what had happened to her that day.
Not only are they not sorry for what they did, they think it was hilarious, and referred to the crowd as “roaches”.
Feel good about your right to peaceably assemble and express free speech?
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