Saturday, December 8, 2007

Police Force

Let me just say that I generally have a good opinion of police offices, but this guy sickens me.

It’s clear from the video that his use of force was unnecessary, and didn’t help the problem besides. The officer violates some basic arresting etiquette, such as telling the driver what he was charged with, and that he intended to arrest him. I heard that, many times, those with criminal-like pathologies join the police force, watching this video makes me believe it.

The use of force was completely unjustified; he calls the driver over, and then tasers him; it was clear that it wasn’t necessary, as the driver was argumentative but generally cooperating.

As Nicholas Provenzo at the Center for the Advancement of Capitalism said:

“The police officer was not clear about his intention to place the driver under arrest. The driver, albeit confused and mildly agitated, thought he was negotiating his citation throughout the encounter. The police officer did not refute this mistaken, yet not dishonest premise. The police officer did not indicate the offense the driver was charged with, or that any further discussion or debate should be saved for a judge. Lastly, the police officer did not in any way indicate that the driver's signing of the citation was not an admission of guilt, but instead allowed the officer to release the driver without arresting him.”

He continues:

“Knowledge of this incentive would likely have led to marked change in the driver's reaction. Instead, the police officer used his weapon to subdue a man who presented no immediate physical threat to him. I say his actions fit the definition of unreasonable to the letter.”

He also makes a good point on the practical use of force by officers:

“Furthermore, as part of the practical aspect of policing, the officer's conduct escalated the situation rather then subdued it. If I were his superior, I'd fire him for recklessness and unprofessional conduct.”

I agree with Mr. Provenzo. Beyond being unreasonable, the officer showed absolutely no tact in dealing with the situation; that alone disqualifies him to wear the badge.

I hope in the near future, this officer finds himself without one, as well as any officer like him.

For contrast, here is an officer that handles himself professionally in a much more stressful situation:

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