In what must be considered a complete overreaction to the provocation, two Seattle deputies subdued a 15-year old suspected of auto theft, but one deputy seems to really lose it.
In the video, a deputy kicks the girl, pushing her back toward the wall. The deputy then strongly backs the girl against the wall, and slams her to the floor by grabbing her hair. A second deputy enters the holding cell, while the first deputy holds the girl face down to the floor. The first deputy appears to hit the girl with his hands. The girl is then lifted up and led out of the cell while the first deputy holds her hair.
According to court documents, the girl complained of breathing problems after the incident and medics were called to check her. A short time later, she was taken to a youth detention center and booked for investigation of auto theft and third-degree assault, the latter accusation dealing with her conduct toward the deputy. The girl has pleaded not guilty to taking a motor vehicle without permission, Goodhew said Friday, adding she was never formally charged with assault.
The video is available on YouTube and at The Huffington Post link.
This appears to be a clear case of police brutality that was totally out-of-line for the high crime of a 15-year-old kid kicking her shoe and (possibly) giving the deputy some lip.
That does not warrant being tossed around by someone bigger, stronger and presumably more mature than a teenage girl.
There are cops who behave like thugs and are no different from any other gang banger except for the badge and uniform. Reasonable people can disagree reasonably upon what is the proper role of the police and what can be considered a reasonable use of force, but possible acts of brutality only encourage mistrust and disrespect of the police and reinforce the “bullies with badges” image some have of the cops.
It’s better for the police specifically and for society at large to weed bad cops off the force and back good cops doing their jobs the right way.
The day I lose my capacity for outrage is the day I hope is the last one I draw breath for I will already for all intents and purposes, be dead.
Human beings have a remarkable capacity for self-delusion. They can see the most obvious injustice being done and find a rationalization for it. No matter how outrageous or blatant an act of police brutality is, some people will find a way to rationalize or even justify it.
The officer’s attorneys argued against the release of the video of the incident which occurred last November. But the sheriff did the right thing by letting the public view what happened because had it been discovered the video existed but was being suppressed, the first thing people with an axe to grind against the cops would have screamed is “Cover-up.” And they would have been right.
Let the deputy have his day in court. Hopefully, justice will be served, but even if it doesn’t I can smell one hell of a lawsuit coming up.
UPDATE: Malika Calhoun, The 15-year old assaulted by the deputy appeared Monday on CBS’s The Early Show where she and her father were interviewed by Julie Chen. Here is the link.
As the father of a 14-year-old girl, I’m well aware with the posture Malika Calhoun took before she kicked off her shoe. I’m mad and I’ve got an attitude and I don’t care if you like it. Yeah, I’ve seen her arms folded like that and her lip poked out. I can’t say I much appreciated that kind of behavior.
But if I kicked her, smashed her head in the wall, threw her to the floor, punched her twice, pinned her arms behind her and led her out of the room by her hair, I really couldn’t be surprised if she or her mother filed assault charges against me.
The same thing applies to this deputy. His badge is not a license to beat the crap out of 15-year-old girls even those whose mouth is faster than their brains or give a little too much attitude for their own good or safety.
This guy needs that badge taken away from him and belongs in a jail cell himself.