A Justice Department spokesman has called the leaks “irresponsible and highly troubling”. The spokesman added: “There seems to be an inappropriate effort to influence the public opinion around this case.” [My underlines]When Gov Jay Nixon called for a trial of officer Wilson prior to any fact finding or the results of a grand jury, he was engaged in an "inappropriate effort to influence the public opinion around this case". Where was the Justice Department [sic] when that occurred? When US Atty General Holder went to Ferguson talking about how he understands as a "black man", he was engaged in an "inappropriate effort to influence the public opinion around this case." Where was the reprimand? Matter of fact why wasn't he fired on the spot? If the Justice Department [sic] wants to be credible it must either deal with all parties engaging in "inappropriate efforts" or it should shut up and be quiet. That is what we call equal justice. It's not that hard.
Friday, October 24, 2014
Last night I posted on the autopsy of Vonderritt Myers and the fact that the officer involved in the shooting was off duty and working security for what is assumed to be a private entity. I mentioned that this fact proves troubling since it would appear that "security" personnel are under stricter limitations as to what they can do and how far their jurisdiction goes. Here is St Louis's web page on private security firms:
he Private Security Section is responsible for the processing, training, and licensing of all applicants for security licenses in the City of St. Louis. With the exception of St. Louis Police Officers, all persons performing a security function in the City of St. Louis must be licensed to do so through the Private Security Section. This includes police officers from other jurisdictions who are working in the City of St. Louis.My reading of this is that St Louis PD officers do not have to go through the PSS but I think they still have to follow the rules outlined in the text, particularly:
Watchman – A person employed without police powers and without authorization to carry weapons or protective devices. A watchman performs the tasks of observation and reporting on or in a designated area and may include patrolling a public street. A watchman has no powers of arrest, search or detention and must wear an approved uniform.... Security Officer – A person employed with certain police powers to protect life or property on or in designated premises. A security officer’s powers exist only within the established property owned or leased by the contracting employer and to incidents occurring on the premises. If qualified, a security officer may carry a firearm and certain protective devices.You'll note that a "watchman" has no police powers. So even if an off duty police officer was employed as a watchman he cannot up and run after a "suspicious male". Now we know from the report that the officer was wearing his uniform. Since the above text says that uniforms must be worn, it is possible that the officer was employed as a watchman. In which case he was NOT authorized to chase anyone who is simply "running away" without having witnessed some crime. If however the officer was employed as a security officer then his abilities are expanded. But these powers only extend to the property "owned or leased by the contracting employer". I would have a hard time agreeing that some private entity could lay claim to a public street or sidewalk or random bushes that the officer claimed Vonderitt jumped out of. So if it was the case that the officer was acting as a security officer, it would have to be shown that he was acting to protect property owned by the contracting firm. Thus far I have not seen any information naming the company that this off duty officer was working for but it seems that such information would be highly relevant towards the legality of this officer's actions. [Update] Found Kansas City's regulations
The legal authority vested in a sworn law enforcement member working off-duty employment is limited to the enforcement of federal law, state statutes and municipal ordinances. Officers cannot use police authority to enforce a private employer’s policies and regulations.Enforcement of federal law, state statutes and municipal ordinances. Again, since running away at the sight of a person in a police uniform is not a crime under any of the aforementioned codes, under what authority did that officer begin to make chase (if St Louis is under the same or similar regulations as Kansas City).
Thursday, October 23, 2014
Now this is muddy.
Wecht says Myers was shot eight times – six of those shots were fired at his back, possibly as Vonderit ran from the police officer. Wecht showed the wounds in Vonderit’s legs and said one of the shots shattered his femur. Wecht also says Vonderit was shot in the groin and the fatal shot was to the right side of his head between his eye brow and ear. Attorneys for Myers’ family say the shots are consistent with what eye-witnesses said at the scene — that Myers was running away from the officer.I think the shot to the head is going to be most problematic. The claim is that Vonderitt shot at the off duty cop working security (for who?) One question is whether under the law an off duty police officer has the same privileges as an on duty officer when it comes to dealing with "suspects". That is, can he chase folks acting "suspiciously"? If fired upon, can he give chase and return fire? And lastly, do we have evidence to support the claim that the gun jammed 3 times? Unlike the Wilson-Brown confrontation where Wilson is acting under color of law, I'm not entirely sure that this off duty cop is covered the same way while working "security" (for who?).
The incident that led to the shooting began about 7:30 p.m. CT when an off-duty officer noticed three men near the corner of Shaw Boulevard and Klemm Street in St. Louis. Police Chief Sam Dotson said during a news conference that the men began running when they saw the officer, who responded by chasing one of them. The officer was working as a security guard at the time, but wearing his St. Louis police uniform, Dotson said. [My underlines]Is it proper for an officer working a private security firm to be wearing his police uniform? What are the regulations about that. This is important, IMO, because it's one thing to run from a police officer (as was claimed) it is another to run from a rent a cop. Furthermore running is not a crime unless one has been detained by an officer. There was no report of the officer/security guard detaining or asking to detain Vonderitt. So STLPD is going to have to explain the protocols of it's officers working security in STLPD uniform. It is going to have to explain the powers they have when off the clock and working for a private agency. It is going to have to explain whether a officer working for a private company has "shoot to kill" jurisdiction or even "shoot" jurisdiction outside of the private property being "secured". This is definitely NOT a Michael Brown situation.
Monday, October 20, 2014
Reading the Detroit News:
But a woman said her water bill jumped $600 after neighbors helped themselves to her outside faucet, using it so often they broke the handle. The woman, Barbara Russo, said she didn't blame her neighbors for their actions. "If you treat people like animals, you can only expect them to behave like animals," she said.See that's theft. You can't blame the government for neighbors who steal water for their own use and who don't even have the decency to knock on your door and offer to pay you for the water they use. See this "I have a right to free shit" is THE problem in this whole thing. Mind you it's not everybody.
lls, have led to residents helping neighbors by giving money, jugs of water or running hoses to their homes.My hat is off to these people practicing collective work and responsibility and cooperative economics. They either understand or will understand it is this concept that lead to the building of water works in the first place. And why it is how civilization grows and spreads. But those people who stole $550 worth of water from Barbara did so NOT because of the water shut offs. No. They are WHY there are water shut off's in the first place. They are the people that feel that they have a God given right to take what other people have worked and earned. The have no regard for anyone except for themselves and only see other people and institutions as something to game and exploit.
Saturday, October 18, 2014
he police officer who fatally shot Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., two months ago has told investigators that he was pinned in his vehicle and in fear for his life as he struggled over his gun with Mr. Brown, according to government officials briefed on the federal civil rights investigation into the matter. The officer, Darren Wilson, has told the authorities that during the scuffle, Mr. Brown reached for the gun. It was fired twice in the car, according to forensics tests performed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The first bullet struck Mr. Brown in the arm; the second bullet missed. The forensics tests showed Mr. Brown’s blood on the gun, as well as on the interior door panel and on Officer Wilson’s uniform. Officer Wilson told the authorities that Mr. Brown had punched and scratched him repeatedly, leaving swelling on his face and cuts on his neck.This is what y'all are marching for?
Never, Mr. Johnson said, did Mr. Brown reach for the officer’s weapon.This is not the first time Johnson was caught lying. This is what y'all are marching for?
“What the police say is not to be taken as gospel,” Mr. Crump said, adding that Officer Wilson should be indicted by the grand jury and his case sent to trial. “He can say what he wants to say in front of a jury. They can listen to all the evidence and the people can have it transparent so they know that the system works for everybody.”And Mr. Crump is absolutely correct. We don't have to take what the police say as gospel. We do however get to look at the evidence and see how it lines up with witness testimony. And the witness testimony is largely supportive of the police story. And given THAT, a grand jury is likely to not indict.
He added: “The officer’s going to say whatever he’s going to say to justify killing an unarmed kid. Right now, they have this secret proceeding where nobody knows what’s happening and nobody knows what’s going on. No matter what happened in the car, Michael Brown ran away from him.”The "secret proceeding" is what we call a grand jury. As a lawyer he knows this. What he is trying to do is get the public to think that this is some kind of legal anomaly. That somehow the grand jury is illegitimate. Shame on him. I'd actually think he deserves some kind of censure from the bar for his implication. Secondly, having just committed a felony assault on a peace officer. That officer is not required to "not shoot" just because the assailant decided to run. Crump knows this. Crump also knows that whether Brown ran away is also irrelevant because he wasn't hit while running away. He was hit while approaching the officer (who he had just assaulted and tried to kill). But I know Crump is only doing his job. Like Wilson's lawyer will be doing his. And how, I hope, everyone else involved is doing. So I won't slight Crump for that. His liberties with the facts? They should be pointed out by journalists when they report.
Friday, October 17, 2014
While fake revolutionaries continue to make asses of themselves in public, people under oath are providing witness testimony to the grand jury
One Canfield resident — who said he saw the killing of Brown from start to finish and talked to the grand jury recently — has given the Post-Dispatch an account with some key differences from previous public statements from other witnesses. Among the recollections of the witness, who agreed to an interview on the condition that his name not be used, were: • After an initial scuffle in the car, the officer did not fire until Brown turned back toward him. • Brown put his arms out to his sides but never raised his hands high. • Brown staggered toward Wilson despite commands to stop. • The two were about 20 to 25 feet apart when the last shots were fired.[my emphasis]This story is consistent with the overheard audio that surfaced soon after the shooting. it also supports the theory, supported by the autopsy that Brown did not in fact have his hands up over his head but rather low in a manner that suggests that he would rush the officer.
This latest witness, who is black, told the Post-Dispatch that Johnson took off running toward West Florissant Avenue after the first shot went off inside Wilson’s police SUV.Interesting.
In the latest account of the Brown killing, the witness said he saw Wilson’s police SUV stop near Brown and Johnson as they were walking in the middle of Canfield Drive. He said he heard Wilson say something to them, but not what. He said Wilson drove past them, then backed up.This aligns with the earliest stories that came out about the incident. Wilson was responding to the robbery that Brown had just committed (or attempted to). When Wilson told Brown and Johnson to get out the road he was unaware of the description of the suspect. I think that he turned around because the description came over the radio and Wilson realized that it was the person he just hassled about being in the street. Of course we would need radio communication recordings to confirm this. The other more unlikely theory is that Brown said something offensive to Wilson. Wilson drove off and thought about it and decided to go back to Brown to confront him on whatever was said. I just do not see why a police officer who is on the way to a reported robbery would stop that over being mouthed off to.
The witness said he had been on the right side of the police SUV and did not have a clear view of what happened on the opposite, driver’s side. “There was a tussle going on,” he said, adding that he believes he saw Wilson’s hat fly off. He then heard a shot and saw Brown run, followed by Wilson. He said Wilson aimed his handgun at Brown and yelled: “Stop! Stop! Stop!”This witness has just confirmed that Wilson was assaulted by Brown. Assault on a peace officer is a felony in Missouri
7. Assault of a law enforcement officer, corrections officer, emergency personnel, highway worker in a construction zone or work zone, utility worker, cable worker, or probation and parole officer in the second degree is a class B felony unless committed pursuant to subdivision (2), (5), (6), or (7) of subsection 1 of this section in which case it is a class C felony. For any violation of subdivision (1), (3), or (4) of subsection 1 of this section, the defendant must serve mandatory jail time as part of his or her sentence.So regardless of what Brown did up to the point that he and wilson had their dispute, once he struck the officer, it was an entirely different ballgame.
The witness said Brown did stop, mumbled something he could not clearly hear and took a step toward Wilson. “When he stepped foot on that street, the officer told him to stop again, and he fired three shots,” the witness recalled. “When he (Brown) got hit, he staggered like, ‘Oh,’ and his body moved. Then he looked down.This would explain the gap in shots that we heard in the recording released by CNN.
“His hands were up like this (he gestures with arms out to the side and palms upward), and he was looking at the officer and was coming toward him trying to keep his feet and stand up. The officer took a few steps back and yelled, ‘Stop,’ again, and Michael was trying to stay on his feet. [my underlines]This is why the autopsy showed the entry wounds lining up Brown's arm before the head shot. I said then and it is supported by this witness that the autopsy shows a person that does not have his hands up in the air but rather arms to his side.
“He was 20 to 25 feet from officer, and after he started staggering, he (Wilson) let off four more rounds. As he was firing those last rounds, Michael was on his way down. We were thinking, ‘Oh my God, oh my God, brother, stop, stop.’ He was already on his way down when he fired those last shots.” The witness said Wilson didn’t have to kill Brown. “It went from zero to 100 like that, in the blink of an eye. ... What transpired to us, in my eyesight, was murder. Down outright murder.”This part is probably the most damaging to Wilson. Well actually it is the ONLY damaging testimony. It could be argued that once Wilson saw that Brown had been struck and was arguably (though not definitively) a real threat, that Wilson ought not to have fired the remaining shots. You may conclude that it was gratuitous. The problem is that a criminal conviction requires "beyond reasonable doubt". There is enough reasonable doubt present in the evidence and witness statements thus far to clear Wilson of any charge that requires intent or malice. That would leave only charges that require showing negligence. With that I don't see how anything beyond reasonable doubt could be offered to support that kind of charge. Wilson had been assaulted, hence Brown just committed a felony. An arrest able and mailable offense. He failed to follow the lawful orders of a peace officer ("Stop! Stop! Stop!") and if the previous witness testimony that Wilson fired his final shots while backing up are supported by other witnesses, it will be argued that Wilson did fear for his life (whether it be because Brown was big and black or because Wilson was still moving towards him). Such a fear of his life, while acting under color of law will unlikely pursuade any fair jury that Wilson is guilty beyond reasonable doubt. I would be surprised if Wilson is indicted on anything at all if the claims of this witness that the jury members are being "fair" are accurate. If there is an indictment I expect the trial to be short and for Wilson to not be convicted.
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Since I recently posted on Slate's erroneous statistics as to the levels of justice system involvement black folks have (and I don't mean as lawyers for the defense), let me take it back to the 1990's. See what a lot of people don't realize is that music is a means of programming people to do bad things. Even as a child, due to the training I received and what I consider my general affinity for decency, I didn't quite get into what we can refer to as gangster rap. I like(d) rap but I was more on the conscious raising type (which, looking back contained a lot of erroneous messages themselves). But other artists had some content that could be quite dangerous to those with less affinity to decency and morals and lesser impulse control. For example let me share some of the lyrics of Black Moon's "Reality (Killing Every Nigga)":
I represent the original headLet me stop here for a minute. "original" in AA black vernacular is usually a reference to "original man" which is a common reference to black men. However in this case we have a dual layer message. "Dead" is a common reference to those on a "dead level", a Masonic reference to those who are unenlightened. Thus an "original dead" can mean not only a "dead original man" or dead black man, but also a black man who is unenlightened. Thus the "killing" in this reference can be seen as a "conscious" reference to killing 'sellout black men" who are "Original dead".
Killing the original dead
Check my dialect from my diaphragmHere we start with the obligatory gun talk. The obligatory kill talk. The obligatory beat down "Timberland make me general" talk.
You got your nine by your waistline and
Me and my niggas don't give a damn
We got the Bucktown Boot Camp attitude kill a man
Timberland make me general
That's light at night puffin' the L by the grip and nowSelf explanatory.
I smoke so much Li I hallucinate
Ill visions in my head
Everybody must dead
[Hook: repeat 4X]
Killing every nigga in sight
Killing every nigga in sight
Killing every nigga in...
I wake up in the morning..(we puff Li) I wake up in the evening...(we puff Li) Check the blahzay blahGet up and get ready to work? PShaw....Do homework? Study? Pshawwww.....weed man...weeeed.
Don't you hate niggas who make records for bitchesHere is a shining example of how to be a man.
It's all about the blunts
Fuck them stunts
Now, what ya want is what ya get
Like biggety bitch bend over blow me
Original crooks never get dissedOne thing that's very important here is the admission that they are being crooks. See it's not that they don't know any better. They just think that they can get away with it all. All over America there are black parents who are playing shit like this to their children. They are singing these lyrics in front of their children. They are teaching their children not only the lyrics but the attitude promoted in these songs. And they don't have a problem with any of it. And when their kid gets 3 shots center mass by the police they have a problem. They never thought for a minute that they had programmed their kids for destruction with lyrics like the above.
If we get dissed
Niggas get that to the back
Five where he at?...(right here!)
Another mission to be dissing
Now who do I be dissing bitches
God, fuck the intermission
It's about killing the nigga
The one playing the bigger
The one playing the sucka ducks with my trigger
Feel the buck coming on in the set
Gunshot residue tests and ballistics evidence indicate that Vonderitt D. Myers Jr. fired a gun at a police officer before being fatally shot, police and union officials said Tuesday. The police department issued a statement saying that forensic scientists from the Missouri Highway Patrol crime lab found gunshot residue on Myers' hands, shirt and inside the waistband and pockets of his jeans. Police said that although gunshot residue can be present on anyone near a shooting, the results show levels consistent with Myers being the shooter, because the police officer was standing too far away. The residue also was found on Myers' right hand only, police said.Lets compare that to witness testimony:
State and city leaders have urged the Justice Department to investigate the death of Vonderrit Myers Wednesday night, fearing he was targeted because he was black. Police say the white officer who killed Myers was returning fire, but Myers’ parents say he was unarmed.The Griot They said he was what? Unarmed?
Late Thursday night following a quiet candlelight prayer vigil for Myers, hundreds of people joined a more rowdy gathering to protest his death. “This here was racial profiling turned deadly,” state Sen. Jamilah Nasheed, a St. Louis Democrat, said at a news conference Thursday.A candlelight vigil for a known criminal. Really? I told ya'll about these fake revolutionaries
Syreeta Myers said her son was holding a sandwich, not a gun. “Police lie. They lied about Michael Brown, too,” she told The Associated Press by phone Thursday.Well sure there are police who lie. Guess who else lies? I know folks are all mad at The Ghost for keeping it 100% and not lying or covering up information to keep on the "right side" of the topic. But see, The Ghost won't be getting you killed for his ego career or blog traffic. Who else is gonna do it? There are a lot of white liberals riding this on some MLK Jr, Civil Rights Movement fantasy. There are a lot of black "wanne be relevant" "leaders" out there trying to make press for their books and trying to get speaking engagements. I'm telling you black folks...these folks mean you no good at all. They wish to keep you all like babies. The Ghost wants you to get up and stand up on your own. You should want that too.
Jamelle Boui makes a huge blunder over at Slate:
The glib response to stats on blacks and police is to cite so-called “black crime” or “black criminality.” But this depends on a major analytical error. Yes, blacks are overrepresented in arrest and conviction rates. At the same time, “criminal blacks” are a tiny, unrepresentative fraction of all black Americans. If you walked into a group of 1,000 randomly selected blacks, the vast majority—upward of 998—would never have had anything to do with violent crime. To generalize from the two is to confuse the specific (how blacks are represented among criminals) with the general (how criminals are represented among blacks). Statisticians call this a “base rate error,” and you should try to avoid it.What Jamelle should avoid doing is not understanding the point about "black crime". While it is certainly the case that the vast majority of black people do not commit crimes. That is not the point at all when it comes to policing and "black crime". First lets deal with one problem with Jamelle's point: 1)"If you walked into a group of 1,000 randomly selected blacks, the vast majority—upward of 998—would never have had anything to do with violent crime." Well actually:
For Black males in their thirties, 1 in every 10 is in prison or jail on any given day.And the rest of the nifty chart:
To generalize from the two is to confuse the specific (how blacks are represented among criminals) with the general (how criminals are represented among blacks). Statisticians call this a “base rate error,” and you should try to avoid it.How blacks are represented among criminals: Way out of proportion to their population in the country. How criminals are represented among blacks: Way out of proportion to their population in the country as compared to other populations in the US. Hopefully that clears things up. Probably not, it's been shown that left leaning individuals have a hard time with maths.