Second Circuit Rejects Middle Finger As A Cry For Help

3682The Second Circuit has reinstated a civil rights lawsuit by former airline pilot John Swartz, a Vietnam veteran who sued after he was arrested in New York for disorderly conduct. Swartz, a Vietnam veteran, says that he was arrested after he signaled his displeasure with a speed trap by extending his middle finger in a universal sign of contempt. The officer however insisted that he took the gesture as a cry for help and followed Swartz. The case is Swartz v. Insogna, 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 186 (2d Cir. 2012).

Here is the account given by the Court:

In his deposition John gave the following account of the incident. In May 2006, he and Judy were driving through the Village of St. Johnsville on their way to the home of Judy’s son. Judy was driving; John was in the passenger seat. At an intersection, John saw a local police officer, Defendant Insogna, in a police car using a radar device, of which John became aware because he had a radar detector. John expressed his displeasure at what the officer was doing by reaching his right arm outside the passenger side window and extending his middle finger over the car’s roof. The Plaintiffs, who were not speeding or committing any other traffic violation, continued to the home of Judy’s son. Upon reaching their destination on Monroe Street, the Plaintiffs got out of the car and saw a police car with its lights flashing approaching from the corner of the street they were on, ultimately stopping behind Judy’s car. When John walked to the trunk of the car, Insogna ordered him and Judy to get back in the car. John initially refused, telling Insogna that he had not been driving the car. Insogna again told John to get back in the car, stating that this was a traffic stop. Judy then urged John to reenter the car, and they both did so.

Insogna then asked to see Judy’s license and registration. John then told her not to show the officer anything, prompting Insogna to say, “Shut your mouth, your ass is in enough trouble.” Insogna then collected Judy’s license and registration, returned to his police car to check the documents, and called for backup. Three other officers soon appeared.

Insogna returned to Judy’s car, gave her back the documents, and told the Plaintiffs they could go. John then got out of the car and asked if he could speak to Insogna, saying “I’d like to speak to you man to man.” As he started walking toward Insogna, who was more than 20 feet away, three other officers stepped in front of him. John stopped, walked away from the officers, and said to himself in a voice apparently too low for his words to be understood, “I feel like an ass.” One of the other officers asked John what he had said, and John repeated his remark loud enough to be heard. At that point Defendant Collins said, “That does it, you’re under arrest,” but did not say for what.

The officer, Richard Insogna, says that Swartz called him vulgar names after Insogna followed him. Insogna however insists (rather implausibly) that he considered Swartz waiving his middle finger to be an attempt to get his attention. He said that he feared Swartz might be involved in some type of domestic dispute and needed his help.

There is no court that could better take judicial notice of the use of the middle finger than a New York court and the Second Circuit expressed skepticism at the officer’s explanation in a 14-page opinion written by Judge Jon O. Newman for a three-judge panel:

Perhaps there is a police officer somewhere who would interpret an automobile passenger’s giving him the finger as a signal of distress, creating a suspicion that something occurring in the automobile warranted investigation. And perhaps that interpretation is what prompted Insogna to act, as he claims. But the nearly universal recognition that this gesture is an insult deprives such an interpretation of reasonableness. This ancient gesture of insult is not the basis for a reasonable suspicion of a traffic violation or impending criminal activity. Surely no passenger planning some wrongful conduct toward another occupant of an automobile would call attention to himself by giving the finger to a police officer. And if there might be an automobile passenger somewhere who will give the finger to a police officer as an ill-advised signal for help, it is far more consistent with all citizens’ protection against improper police apprehension to leave that highly unlikely signal without a response than to lend judicial approval to the stopping of every vehicle from which a passenger makes that gesture.

Indeed, in New York, the traffic would come to a virtual standstill.

What is particularly enlightening however is the court’s exploration of this particular gesture: “Possibly the first recorded use of the gesture in the United States occurred in 1886 when a joint baseball team photograph of the Boston Beaneaters and the New York Giants showed a Boston pitcher giving the finger to the Giants.”

I wonder if the lawyers asked Isogna in deposition if he was a Giants fan.

Thomas K. Murphy, a lawyer representing the officer and a sheriff’s deputy in the case, took a cultural defense approach, insisting that such displays may be common in New York City but “[t]his is St. Johnsville, New York. Not the Bronx. Not Manhattan. It’s a sleepy little town.”

If the officer is correct, however, it would mean that George W. Bush and Nelson Rockefeller both made a widely misunderstood cry for help in their careers.

The ruling was joined by Judges Gerard E. Lynch and Raymond J. Lohier Jr., and reinstated the lawsuit alleging an illegal traffic stop, false arrest and malicious prosecution. What I do not get is why the police department has litigated this case with such absurd defenses. Any argument of this kind was probably received as the legal equivalent of the gesture at the heart of the case.

Source: New York Times

63 thoughts on “Second Circuit Rejects Middle Finger As A Cry For Help

  1. Lol….. And I thought I was the only one that finds humor in this type of Federal Case….. Apparently the Court does as well….

  2. Vietnam veteran Swartz, who is a Vietnam veteran, fought in the Vietnam war and is a former soldier during Vietnam.

  3. “What I do not get is why the police department has litigated this case with such absurd defenses.”
    Since they won a dismissal in the court below, the defenses are not that absurd it would seem.

  4. Good post, Mr. Turley. Being a huge fan oif baseball history I hope the casual fans take note of my favorite baseball team name of all time..the Boston Beaneaters. I would be willing to bet some flatulence accompanied the inital presentation of what has now become known as “flipping the bird.”

  5. The police department litigated this case because police all over this country have decided that anyone who dares exhibit behavior that the individual police officer does not like for any reason is a criminal and can be followed, arrested, beaten, tazered, shot and then arrested on trumpeted up charges that will more likely than not be supported by the prosecutor. There are hundreds if not thousands of law abiding citizens who simply “didnt treat” police officers with the exhalted level of respect that they have decided they are due or who have stumbled into a situation with an officer who is angry at the world who have lost jobs, money, health and sometimes freedom because the police believe that they can do anything they want. Most judges look the other way when this behavior is presented to them because even police in these situations are viewed as “heroes” whose choices cannot be questioned. The failure of the judiciary to stop this kind of behavior and the failure of civilian authorities to fire and prosecute police officers who behave in this way has lead to a growing fear that police officers are to be feared in all situations. A sorry state of affairs.

  6. What Justice Holmes said. The only crimes here is the idiocy of the officer who abused his authority because his widdle feelin’s was hurt because he was dissed, a prosecutor stupid enough to bring the charges against Swartz in the first place, which ever one of those two was idiotic enough to come up with that rationale of “looking for help”, and a lower court stupid enough to listen to either officer or prosecutor without the result being laughing in their faces. More than one person involved in this incident deserve the finger and none of them are Swartz.

  7. The police are out of control; the guy with the finger is stoopid; but his commentary was protected by the First Amendment.

  8. Two books, the names of which do not get pass the moderation cue, are out that would explain this and a lot of other police behavior (Link). The subject matter is the history of anal cavities.

  9. “What I do not get is why the police department has litigated this case with such absurd defenses.”


    Because the mentality of some law firms and their insurers is to take the most unreasonable position possible and negotiate from there. I call it the Republican gambit and guess what? Most of the practitioners are Republicans. And even more of a surprise: a whole lot of conservative judges let ’em get away with it. Note the lack of sanctions against the defendants here. Try that tack as a plaintiff sometime.

    Also, what I find even more galling is the idea that three grown adults would spend more than one second deciding this case. Who cares about the history of a crude insult? Certainly no really learned people I know would spend 14 pages pointing out the obvious. It would be beneath most folks — lawyers or not –, but alas I am not a federal judge. And if this is in their job description, I sure don’t want to be.

  10. As sort of an audition for my job on the federal bench, I re-wrote the opinion. Here goes:

    The defendants have asked the court to excuse their alleged unconstitutional activities with a defense that any twelve-year-old of reasonable intelligence and experience could refute. I am spending as much time on this case as the defendants spent in conjuring up their defense.

    Judgment for the Plaintiff. Defendants to pay all of Plaintiff’s attorneys’ fees and costs on appeal plus an amount equal to one minute of my salary for making me waste one minute of my life on this case.

    ~Trying to stay honorable mespo727272, faux-judge

  11. “I am spending as much time on this case as the defendants spent in conjuring up their defense.” -mespo727272

    Too much credit given to the defendants, I suspect.

  12. Dredd,
    Are you familiar with Goatsie? Fair warning, you have to search with filters off and definitely NSFW.

  13. That officer should be charged with perjury. He lied under oath about believing that he took the the plaintiff shooting the finger at him as a call for help.

    Just another example of cops out of control.

  14. One commenter said that the use of the middle finger was protected by the First Amendment. I agree. The finger guy was pulled over and arrested. Searched. Besides the Fourth and Fifth Amendments his right of privacy was invaded. Ninth Amendment. The people in that town need to Occupy The Pigsty. Other than that I know nuthing.

  15. Another missive from the future came in regarding the War Crimes Trials in Nuremburg by the Internation Court of Human Rights. The following persons are defendants in the charges involving the torture of Bradley Manning in the year 2012:

    Chief Warrant Officer James Averhart: Brig commander, Quantico
    Chief Warrant Officer Abel Galaviz: Head of Marine Corrections
    Gunnery Sergeant Craig Blenis: Counselor to Bradley Manning at Quantico
    GNYSGT Jordan: Mid-level brig staff, Quantico
    Col. Daniel Choike: Base commander, Quantico
    Master Sergeant Brian Papakie: Brig supervisor, Quantico
    Cpt. William Hoctor: Psychiatrist for Bradley Manning, Quantico
    Cpt. Ricky Malone: Psychiatrist for Manning.

    I will forward more information as it comes in. The trial occurred on Dec 7 2020. Or will occur. Somehow this is coming back in time over the internet to our Dogalogue Machine.

  16. Folks

    There is a gesture that police officers sometimes use to indicate to other officers (usually ones who are just driving by to check on them) that they need help but are not able to ask for it, such as when they don’t want to alert the person they are standing with. I’m not going to specifically describe it for security reasons but it does involve a similar gesture, but it is certainly distinct. I say this only because it might have sponsored the officer to declare the flipping off was a “cry for help”, that is that he had it in his mind as a possible, albeit far fetched, defense he could craft retroactively.

    To me this idea of a person calling for help falls flat on its face after the officer contacted the two persons. If the person using the gesture was acutally in trouble why would the officer order this person, and the other person implied to be the threat back into the car together? It makes no sense whatever.

    This was a case of an officer getting angry and hooking up someone before he came to his senses and the city trying to cover its arse afterward.

  17. Another transcript of the Human Rights trial against Cheney and the other defendants in Nuremburg in the year 2020 just came in on the internet. Here is a transcript regarding his so called psychiatrists at Quantico:

    Nearly every single week, brig psychiatrists implored top officials to remove Bradley from these conditions, avowing both that there was no psychiatric need for his isolation and that his treatment was worsening his mental health. Yet Quantico’s brig commanders – first Chief Warrant Officer James Averhart, then CWO Denise Barnes – kept him on SR or POI, both maximum-security classifications, for his entire time in the brig.

    In mid-January, Cpt. Hocter pressed Quantico’s Battalion Commander, Col. Oltman, on the matter, saying Bradley had no mental-health reason to remain on POI and that he’d never been ignored like this before. Col. Oltman told him to make his recommendation and that Bradley would be kept on POI regardless. Testimony on his wording varies, but Cpt. Hocter recalls Col. Oltman saying that Bradley would be kept on POI “indefinitely.”

    The above transcript was from a hearing held in the year 2012.
    The International Court is trying the Quantico officers and other defendants such as Dick Cheney for human rights violations. It is about time.

  18. Tom,

    I would have another meaning.
    I think only that the local court was closing ranks to support the police and not be harrassed the rest of his life by them.

    Realistic, IMHO

  19. To arrest is getting back at a human.It is a form of revenge. The legal system is the real atheist. They deny God not thinking there is not a final judgment wanting to take Gods place.

  20. Nate,

    What are you implying.
    That being a good soldier (do we know that?, makes him a good cop.

    IMHO, his actions in this case, cast suspicion on his unknown service record, how he won the job and with what corruption involved. Corruption begins at home and spreads totally through a small town. Who was his dad, uncles before they passed away? Implications with lack of evidence won’t get much support here, so say those who know.

    PS Why was the dashboard camera not filming recording this. Because they didn’t want evidence agäinst themselves.

    They were hoping that he would break bad and then they could use as much violence as they had stored up for the day. The charges thay would have lied about would be multiplied by two! Instead of counterpleas, he would be facing a penalty rap and hoping for a deal with the DA.

    So is justice done.

    Or don’t you agree?

  21. Justice Holmes,
    Great post,

    Just a small expression of dissent in re reality.
    No judge is fool enough to do as you claim:

    “Most judges look the other way when this behavior is presented to them because even police in these situations are viewed as “heroes” ”

    The LEOs (ironic name) are instead the local bully gang who all in the justice system must defer to, conflict brings severe reprisal of off-the-record hidden attacks on you, your family, your reputqtion, slow leaks in your tires.
    You may ´move, but the “word” from your persecutors will follow in the 50 states. Never ending travail. The police have their jackboots on the neck of all in society.

    So no judge dares. The Justice Dept probably provides body guards fcr their Circuit Court judges, and a system of counter reprisals against all who can be connected to disapproving the judgements.

    And speaking of finger, I hope the CC ruling was one back at them.
    Atrocities are NOT only committed on the battle field. This officer is perhaps one to use when hiring war vets.

    What kind I’ll leave you to decide.

    It is war, and every man for himself.

  22. Nate,

    Deep apologies. My reasoning may have been correcf, but it was based on the police officer being named Schwarz..
    Sloppy reading or tired old mind My bad.
    Not too much damage done I hope, only to me. :-)

  23. Otteray Scribe 1, January 7, 2013 at 11:42 am

    Are you familiar with Goatsie? Fair warning, you have to search with filters off and definitely NSFW.
    No, I had never heard of it. One hit that came up from “the google” said this “If you don’t know what Goatsie is, consider yourself VERY LUCKY! …”

    Another hit tells what it is and I had to agree to have once been lucky not to know. ;)

  24. Otteray Scribe 1, January 7, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    You cannot say you weren’t warned. :twisted:
    Tru dat.

    I am working on a hypothesis “on the origin of Goatsie.”

    The link to it is censored on this blog, so I will spell it out: s s h o l e s.html

    Remove the spaces and go there at your own peril.

    Can’t say you were not forewarned. :twisted:

  25. We should show up at the Bradley Manning trial in Virginia. Here is a description of the torture inflicted upon him by our country:

    List of Torture Techniques Applied to Pfc. Bradley Manning:

    1. Solitary Confinement/Isolation

    Solitary confinement is strictly prohibited under international law. It is a cruel practice which causes permanent psychological damage. The impacts can range from hallucinations, emotional damage, delusions and impaired cognitive functioning to anxiety and depression. Solitary confinement is outlawed under the Convention Against Torture, ICCPR and the Geneva Conventions.

    Manning was in solitary confinement in Kuwait and Quantico for nine months. He was in a cage (Kuwait) or a small, windowless cell for 23 hours a day. He was given 20 minutes of “sunshine call” each day, during which he could “walk” figure eights in restraints with guards holding him up. Eventually, he received 1 hour of recreation per day–still woefully below legal standards. His treating military psychologist, Col. Rick Malone, much to his credit, testified that

    The ways he was being held was detrimental to his physical and mental health. His custody status was a stressor . . . He was taken of medications after several weeks because he was symptom-free. . .in complete remission . . .and posed no harm to himself or others.
    2. Humiliation Techniques
    Bradley Manning, being held alternatively in “suicide risk” and “prevention of injury” status (despite military psychologists testifying that he posed no risk of injury to himself or others) pointed out that

    If I really wanted to kill myself, I could use my underwear.
    Even though he was under 24/7 observation, the military took his underpants. At the routine count the next morning, he covered himself with the prevention-of-injury sandpaper blanket. An officer asked,
    Detainee Manning, Is that how you stand at parade rest?
    Manning requested clarification. He was soon standing completely naked for morning count. Forced nudity is used to induce feelings of humiliation and fear. Manning also had to request toilet paper any time he needed to relieve himself. This was supposedly an anti-suicide measure, which is belied by the fact that he was under constant surveillance.
    3. Sleep Deprivation

    Upon his initial confinement in Kuwait, Manning’s days and nights were reversed, being awoken in the evening and kept up all night. Sleep deprivation is a very effective torture technique used by torturers because it makes a person more suggestible, reduces psychological resistance and it reduces the body’s capacity to resist pain. It had this very effect on Manning, causing him to have what has been described as an “anxiety attack” and “nervous breakdown.” Once he was moved to Quantico, guards awakened Manning multiple times on multiple nights each week, and a flourescent light was always visible from his cell. The Committee against Torture (CAT) has noted that sleep deprivation used for prolonged periods constitutes a breach of the CAT, and is primarily used to break down the will of the detainee. Sleep deprivation can cause impaired memory and cognitive functioning, decreased short term memory, speech impairment, hallucinations, psychosis, lowered immunity, headaches, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, stress, anxiety and depression…even though Manning was supposedly in restricted custodial status due to anxiety and depression.

    4. Sensory Deprivation

    Sensory deprivation is used to instil a sense of fear, disorientation and cause dependency on their captor. Sensory deprivation has also been attributed to increased pain sensitivity and increased psychological stress. The military confiscated Manning’s glasses, without which he cannot see. So all of the isolation he endured, he did so while essentially blind.

    5. Stress Positions

    Manning was kept shackled in his cell. He was told he had to stand because he was still “on duty.” If he sat, he was not allowed to lean against the wall or lie down. The strangest thing was the “tear-proof smock,” which was really a nearly floor-length, rigid, abrasive rubber-and-foam straight jacket. Manning donned this restraint, which he often had to wear with nothing on beneath. Manning got stuck in this device, which was supposedly for his protection, and had to be extracted by guards.

    These physically and psychologically abusive techniques were used to disorient Manning and induce regression, psychic disintegration, and feelings of helplessness that lowered his defenses. He would routinely go through perfunctory “wellness checklists,” and didn’t start advocating for himself until his amazing attorney, David Coombs, told him to start filing formal grievances contesting his conditions of confinement so he could exhaust his administrative remedies. (These formal grievances led to 3 sham “Classified & Assignment Board” hearing, which Manning testified had already decided to keep him on restricted status.)

    These techniques were used not by rogue CIA thugs, but by the military–on someone in pre-trial detention, not found guilty to have done anything.

    The victim was originally from Oklahoma. Where are his Senators and Congressmen? They need to stand up for him. The International Courts need to get on this case and start prosecutions against the perps involved here.

  26. Dredd,
    Not gonna look. I had to wash my eyes out with bleach the first time I looked. I am pretty good at one-trial learning. Dr. Edwin Guthrie would be proud of me.

  27. Otteray Scribe 1, January 7, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    Not gonna look. …
    Can’t blame you for that.

    Who needs to know the origin of the mind of The Donald and The W anyway?

  28. The Commanders of Qauntico who tortured Bradley Manning are liable under the doctrine of Command Responsibility. Here is a description from Wikipedia:

    Command responsibility, sometimes referred to as the Yamashita standard or the Medina standard, and also known as superior responsibility, is the doctrine of hierarchical accountability in cases of war crimes.[1][2][3][4]

    The doctrine of “command responsibility” was established by the Hague Conventions IV (1907) and X (1907) and applied for the first time by the German Supreme Court in Leipzig after World War I, in the 1921 trial of Emil Muller.[5][6][7]

    The “Yamashita standard” is based upon the precedent set by the United States Supreme Court in the case of Japanese General Tomoyuki Yamashita. He was prosecuted in 1945, in a still controversial trial, for atrocities committed by troops under his command in the Philippines. Yamashita was charged with “unlawfully disregarding and failing to discharge his duty as a commander to control the acts of members of his command by permitting them to commit war crimes.”[8][9]

    The “Medina standard” is based upon the 1971 prosecution of US Army Captain Ernest Medina in connection with the My Lai Massacre during the Vietnam War.[10] It holds that a commanding officer, being aware of a human rights violation or a war crime, will be held criminally liable when he does not take action. However, Medina was acquitted of all charges.[8][11][12]

  29. What Justice Holmes said. This police officer was going to show who was boss. He lied ss to his reasoning but won’t be charged with anything got it. This stuff will continue as long as the punishment of LEO’s for such behavior becomes serious and I don’t see thst hsppening in the current national mindset. The saddest thing about this serious problem is that it won’t be solved until some police force somewhere starts a program to murder those they perceive as criminals and gets caught.

  30. They have, several places, but caught? No.

    The feds work their side of the street and the locals their’s, and the CIA is for assassinations Of course there is much alphabet soup not mentioned., TSA, DHS, NSA, Coast Guard, Border Control, Customs. etc.
    Police state? Ha, soon we all will be employed in it. Great place to be employed. Lotsa power: Lotsa money (corrupt). Always fun, until your buddies sling you under the bus. You won’t ever know why, but then they never did in 1930s in USSR where it was the best way for the NKVD to get their next item to process.

  31. Kraaken 1, January 7, 2013 at 6:38 pm

    Dredd- DID look and, apparently so did enough people to make them pull the page.
    Are you just tryin’ to drum up business?

    People want what they can’t have. ;)

    All pages are working fine On The Origin of A s s h o l e s research.

    We may find the cause of the malfunction in these finger haters after all is said and done.

  32. Dredd and OS,

    I looked at Google and got a word description from Urban Dictionary which was explicit if not full coverage. They might have it all but wss “satisfied” by the bit that Google offered from the site. How wide is it possible? Any ideas?
    I even visited the official fan site (one of many?). Didn’t go past the opening hard rock intro page.

    Guess I really don’t want to find out what Toupé’s and Dubjas’ look like.

    Speaking of the latter: exposed by last nights few pages reading of Russ Bakers Family of Secrets. declares that he was the only Harvard Business School grad that left without a job offer. Many interviews, but no job

    Why? IMHO and implied lafer, it was due to knowing that he had better uses for him home, doing what Poppy told him to do. That had always worked out for Dubja.

    And if you have a veritable ugly Goatsie to look at, I might get my vomiting package from the hospital and take a look. Men are strong, right?

  33. idealist707 1, January 7, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    Dredd and OS,

    …. That had always worked out for Dubja.

    And if you have a veritable ugly Goatsie to look at, I might get my vomiting package from the hospital and take a look.
    The On The Origin of A s s h o l e s is a very serious scientific work.

    It may prove out to be real that anal cavaties and intelligence evolved at the same time in the yin yang universe … quien sabe?

  34. idealist707 1, January 7, 2013 at 7:19 pm


    I visited your linked blog, and found only the video on Exxon, etc.
    Did I miss something?
    What was there?

    You were looking for a s s h o l e research, not goatsies weren’t you?

    I hope that OS has not corrupted you. :)

  35. Dredd,

    I think that I understand. Nature saw the need when intelligence was mutated into action. OMG. Who says nature has no foresight.

    Or IS there a guiding hand? Nah, the Devil retired many millions of years ago.
    Got tired of playing around with single celled organisms.
    Guess he made a comeback when we popped up. Or was our origin his work, to prove that Dog is stupid?

  36. DrIedd,

    I am easily mislead. And I do see text, words, ideas that are not there.

    Wonder why. It is not senility, the trait has always been there.

    The only thing that saved me was that most decided it was not worth the effort. Simple fools provide little merriment.

    But I can sure write some skit, so my mental arsle is functioning. To what degree is for you to judge.

    Deprecatingly yours.

    I’ve tons of it. How big is your storage? The Cloud. Forget it. I won’t last long enough.

  37. PS
    The explanation of a55holes is worthy, it seemed to be in a quick scan.

    But combination of OCD and the entrancing idea of seeing a goatsie in action had seized my mind.

  38. Giving the finger. The United States is giving the finger to the world. We, the United States, the Exceptional nation, that tried the Germans at Nuremburg after WWII for War Crimes and Human Rights Crimes, are giving the finger to all of that. When you wake up tomorrow morning all snug in your bed with the electric blanky going, think what WE did to Manning every day, 24/7. Naked, in a cold cell 8 x 8 on a lame cot with no sheet, no top sheet, no blanky, no socks, no pajamas, no underwear, no shirt, no night cap, awakened hour by hour by lame brain guards in some no neck, no crack prison called Quantico. America, the Exceptional nation.

  39. please, at what point in the history of the united states has it been okay to flip off a cop and not expect to get a nightstick stuck up your a$$.

  40. raff

    don’t get me wrong, most if not all officers need to be reminded from time to time who works for who and the consequences of lying in court.

    but don’t make an obscene gesture at someone and then act surprised when confronted about it.

  41. It is called “flipping the bird”. The bird is the word.
    There was a song about this in the 60’s. The Bird Is The Word.

    A badge is issued by the government authorities at our behest to enforce the law, not break the law. When they break the law we not only take the badge away from the law breaker we must discipline him and the superior who allowed this to happen. Our law allows a victim of state actor abuse of our civil rights to sue for injunctive relief to prevent it again and to sue for damages to get recompense and to punish the law breaker. Ttle 42 of the States Code, section 1983. That code is your friend and mine.

  42. I wonder in the officers next career move….. Will he be required to ask the following…… Would you like fries with this….. Or may we super size this meal today….

  43. Rafflaw,

    All you say is correct.
    But who has the insanity or guts to resist. Not many, I fear.

    Any views on how this can be brought home to our LEO organizations?
    “Our rules, not yours”.

  44. One thing that was once tried in America, but most practiced in USSR is the citizen witness.

    All was naturally done according to SOP. But you could count on you, the accused, never getting out living. Few who complained actively lived more that a few days. So citizen witnesses won’t do it.

    They knew their place and what is expected. And on which dotted line to sign off.

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