But for a failed legal system the two ambushed NYPD cops would be alive today

December 21, 2014

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Good afternoon:

Ismaaiyl Brinsley, 28, ambushed and killed two NYPD officers yesterday as they were sitting in their parked patrol car in the East Flatbush neighborhood of Brooklyn. He fired two shots through the passenger side window hitting both of them in the head. Then he ran into a nearby subway station and committed suicide, shooting himself in the head.

Brinsley apparently did not know the officers. The Washington Post reports,

Before he made his way to Brooklyn on Saturday morning, police said, Brinsley shot his girlfriend about 5:45 a.m. in Owings Mills, Md., about 15 miles outside Baltimore. The shooting occurred at a gated apartment complex called Greenwich Place Town Center, adjacent to a parking lot for a movie theater at Owings Mills Mall.

Late Saturday night, Baltimore County police confirmed that Brinsley was the gunman in the earlier shooting that wounded the 29-year-old Owings Mills woman. Police said the victim, whose name has not been released, was shot in the abdomen.

Police said Brinsley fled the scene of the shooting before they arrived. By 1:30 p.m., police said they became aware of Instagram posts by the suspect that included “threats against police officers.” Authorities said they quickly traced the posts and the phone Brinsley was using to a location in Brooklyn.

About 2:10 p.m., Baltimore County police called New York’s 70th Precinct to discuss the threatening Instagram posts and informed officers that Brinsley’s phone was “pinging” at a location in their precinct. At the same time, Baltimore County authorities said they faxed a “wanted” poster to the NYPD with information about Brinsley. Around 2:50 p.m., they sent a teletype with the same information in the flier to NYPD’s “real-time crime center.”

They were about five minutes too late.

The murders by ambush will freak out many cops who, if not already, will become paranoid hyper vigilant drones with automatic trigger responses.

Hate to say it, but the ambush yesterday was a predictable and inevitable push-back to the epidemic of murders committed by our militarized police who will increasingly react like a besieged occupation army. The only certainty is an escalating death rate for citizens and police.

I blame out-of-control cops like Wilson and Pantaleo and the corrupt prosecutors who protected them like Robert McCulloch in St.Louis and Dan Donovan in Staten Island.

The tragedy yesterday happened because the legal system failed.

NYPD cops are blaming Mayor Bill de Blasio because he dared to express concern about the safety of his biracial son after a grand jury declined to indict Daniel Pantaleo for killing Eric Garner with a choke hold.

They could not possibly be more mistaken.

We have reached a fork in the road. Do we demilitarize our out-of-control police, return to community policing and fix our broken legal system or do we descend into chaos?

I fear we have already made the wrong choice

If I were a police officer today, I would turn-in my badge and gun and resign.

Police who act like members of an occupying army deserve no respect

December 15, 2014

Monday, December 15, 2014

Good morning:

Police who act like members of an occupying army are a clear and present danger to everyone and deserve no respect. All of them should be fired. We must demilitarize our police departments, subject them to citizen review and require them to engage in community policing in service to the people.

Yesterday, yet another cop made a fool out of himself by complaining about a professional football player who dared to protest two indefensible police killings of unarmed black males. This time it was Jeff Folmer, president of the Cleveland Police Patrolman Union. He complained about Andrew Hawkins, a wide receiver for the Cleveland Browns who wore a shirt over his jersey during the pregame introductions yesterday that said, “Justice for Tamir Rice – John Crawford.”

Tamir Rice is the 12-year-old boy who was playing by himself in a gazebo in a public park waving a toy gun around when two cops in a police vehicle suddenly drove up and stopped on the grass. In no more than two seconds, the cop sitting on the passenger side got out and shot him to death. John Crawford was shopping in a Walmart for a toy to give to his son. After he selected a pellet rifle, a cop shot and killed him. Rice and Crawford were black. The cops who killed them were white. Both were employed by the Cleveland Police Department.

They are not the only rotten apples in the Cleveland Police Department.

Two weeks ago Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Justice Department’s civil rights investigation of Cleveland’s police department found that it had engaged in a “pattern or practice” of unreasonable and unnecessary use of force. CNN reports,

Above a vehicle bay at one of the Cleveland Division of Police’s district stations hangs a sign that reads, “forward operating base,” a term usually used to describe an area of tactical operations in a war zone. The sign sends a message indicative of the community’s opinion of the division, Justice Department officials said.

“This characterization reinforces the view held by some — both inside and outside the Division — that CDP is an occupying force instead of a true partner and resource in the community it serves,” the investigative report said. It’s one illustration, the Justice Department’s report says, that “officer training instills in officers an ‘us-against-them’ mentality.”

As a result of the DOJ’s disturbing findings, the DOJ and the City of Cleveland have signed an agreement “to develop a court-enforceable consent decree that will include a requirement for an independent monitor who will oversee and ensure necessary reforms.”

Despite the CPD’s shocking record of violating civil rights and its acknowledgement that it must change from its occupation-army-in-a-war-zone mentality to a community policing mentality working in partnership with the people it serves rather than ruling them, along comes Jeff Folmer with a gas can and match demanding an apology from Andrew Hawkins and the Cleveland Browns.

In a statement to Cleveland WEWS-Channel 5, CPPU President Jeff Follmer demanded an apolgy from the Browns. Follmer also called Hawkins’ actions pathetic.

“It’s pretty pathetic when athletes think they know the law,” Follmer said. “They should stick to what they know best on the field. The Cleveland Police protect and serve the Browns stadium and the Browns organization owes us an apology.”

Follmer does not get it. The Cleveland Police Department is not an occupation army that gets to kill anyone for any reason anytime it feels like it and literally get away with murder by saying “I thought I saw a gun.”

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