Video: Police Officer Turns Off Video Before Woman is Found in a Pool of Blood

The use of videos to record custodial conditions and arrests has yielded some surprising evidence of abuse over the years. However, this video is perhaps more chilling for what was not filmed. Shreveport, LA Officer Wiley Willis is shown clearly getting angry with Angie Garbarino, who was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving. After roughly handling Garbarino, Willis is shown turned off the video. When it is again turned on, Garbarino is shown lying in a pool of her own blood.

Garbarino is clearly uncooperative in the video as Willis tries to read her rights. She tries to give the name of her attorney and even tries to leave the room. She is pushed against the wall and falls on the floor. When she tried to leave again, she is forced roughly into a chair and later off camera.

After the video is turned off, she suffers a broken nose, a severe cut on her forehead, two broken teeth and bruises on her arms and shoulder. The pictures of her black eye and broken nose are pretty damning evidence for any criminal or tort action.

There is obviously a potential case for criminal assault against the officer in this case. The fact the he took measures to conceal his conduct should heavily weigh in favor of a criminal investigation. She will almost certainly file a tort action for battery, assault, and related torts.

For the video, click here

17 thoughts on “Video: Police Officer Turns Off Video Before Woman is Found in a Pool of Blood”

  1. Comment on video police survelance. It occurs to me that there are several facets here. One is that “cops” CAN be bad- power mad, corrupt– just had a bad day – like the time I went to the dentist and he had just got off a bad phone call from his soon-to-be ex-wife. THAT was not a fun experince!

    However- what I have seen in our society these past generations is increasing tolerance for ‘bad behavior’ in –ahem– civilians, especially youth. To put it in a simile-if your job is to catch and move a horse, say- something that has the potential to HURT you, badly– and you walk into the pasture and that horse has manners and respect– you simply catch the horse and calmly put him/her into the corral. IF your job is to catch a wild and crazy animal with NO manners – your job description changes. When I was young, real cowboys would lasso totally wild horses, tie the rope to a post, and just wait intil the animal choked itself down and it was safer for the cowboy to handle it. Our cops are given the job of catching wild and crazy people; to protect others from their wild and crazy behavior. This is a tricky situation- how to handle something that can and WILL hurt you badly-for whatever reason. My tiny daughter is a nurse; she has to balance her own personal safety while trying to work with crazed patients. She’s been hit, spit on, called every name in the book. Meanwhile, she has rules and processes in her job-expectations of performance. Have YOU people ever had to try and work with someone as totally discrespectful and dangerous as that woman? I think not. I’ve been attacked by a teen who was literally bigger than I was-and I caught hell for subduing him physically. I’m a woman, by the way. But I would have caught hell for letting him roam freely, too. Imagine that YOUR job is to catch a demented wild animal- that CAN and WILL hurt you–to continue the simile– your job is to catch and saddle and bridle the wild horse in the least amount of time- or you are fired, cause you got a whole bunch more of them to have to catch. And the horse just keeps on fighting you, till you choke it down and hobble it to get the job done, without the horse destroying the corral, or hurting YOU. I can tell you what the cowboys did- and sometimes, sometimes– they would be over stressed and lose their tempers and over correct. But maybe it WAS NOT over correction– maybe it just took that degree of force to get the horse– or drunk woman– to submit, to change behavior. IF that wild horse I used as a simile was on drugs, where they feel no pain and normal responses are altered- then the degree of force needed to attain submission/ability to handle would escalate. The ‘cowboy’s’ personality and experience with the ‘horse’ would also be a factor. I know that I have gotten ‘tired’ of my one horse’s behavior after constant gentility hasn’t worked- and used the whip to make her load in the trailer cause it wasn’t like she didnt’ know the drill, she was just being a pain, and I was tired and stressed. All the other horses were loaded and having to wait, and the one horse was causing all sorts of trouble. Did I beat her bloody? No, cause she figured it out. Refer back to what I said about dealing with creatures who are on drugs, alcohol, othersise demented. Some will fight savagely until they become unconscious. Perhaps the solution is that IF the persons the cops have to deal with appear to be violent– the cops have the right to gas them unconscious so that they can be handled safely. Didn’t they used to just put someone like that woman into a cage and wait until they sobered up to try and work with them? Then you get into a whole ‘nother spectrum of liability. As in, trying to administer aid to an injured person on drugs who is violent– like nurses have to go through, like animal control people have to go through. It is freaking dangerous to handle injured entities; they are in so much pain that they don’t know what they are doing. Where temper comes in is if the entity knows better but is just being difficult because they think the world revolves around them and their needs. One never knows what the ‘rest of the story’ is– unless you are THERE. I had a woman who rebuked ME for swatting my 2.5 year old daughter on the butt; because she’d run away from 9 months pregnant ME into traffic, almost getting run over by a car. The woman hadn’t seen me spending the last hour trying to be patient and calm, hadn’t seen me take the child out over and over–so that I KNEW that the child knew how to behave, she was just pushing the envelope being defiant. In an above comment, the five ‘white guys’ beating up a Mexican– did you know WHY they were beating him? Did the putative victim continue to resist? Did he stop fighting and LET the cops rescue him, or just keep fighting? You can’t just look at segments of life and make a judgement; you have to look at the whole picture.

  2. If you are an American, and you see a police officer, there is only two options for you: run, or fight. Know that fighting will probably result in your being violently beaten to death if you are captured, and you would have to leave a long trail of dead cops all the way to Mexico to avoid being captured. So running is the best bet. It doesn’t matter if you did anything illegal in your life, if a cop gets a hold of you they’ll make something up if they have to, and the government already knows that police officers are not capable of duplicity, making the matter of a jury trial really just a formality. If you see someone breaking the law, or if someone is harming you, or if you need help, the LAST place you should turn is the police. They are as likely to show up on the scene and start assisting your attackers as they are to assisting you. Someone I know of called 911 because 5 white guys were beating up a Mexican guy. They then had to call back and ask to send more police because those that arrived just started helping the five white guys with their assault. The Mexican dude lived, but barely. That pretty much spells it out. If you are in trouble in America you have no place to turn but yourself. You are better off going to the Mob to get assistance than calling 911.

  3. A measurable percentage of policeman have always been a bit like the TV character ‘Dexter’ – people who find a ‘legitimate’ outlet for lawless behavior. They enjoy bossing people around and issuing orders which, however nonsensical or illegal, must be obeyed to avoid legal and/or physical consequences.
    I often witnessed police brutality as a teenager in the 60’s, drunks being beaten, kids who stole cars being handcuffed and kicked to the ground, plainclothes vice cops who wouldn’t show you a badge but who would demand you emptied your pockets and searched you. I saw my cousin hauled to jail because he fought and beat an off duty policeman who followed him home, pulled in the driveway and accosted him violently. It turned out the guy had designs on my cousin’s girlfriend. My cousin wound up not being charged, but he did earn the undying enmity of the police force in our town.
    I have learned over the years to be humble and submissive, even as a thin, 60+ man. I still avoid policeman like the plague.
    Training is not the answer. We must do a better job of disqualifying candidates for law enforcement who are bullies. Good cops are worth their weight in gold, and about as rare.

  4. DW, I completely agree with your last statement about “sliding backward.” From the amount of these police abuse stories, we are DEFINITELY sliding backward again, and, it seems to me, more quickly than last time. Given the stories of the more frivolous prosecutions that JT has generously provided here, including (but definitely NOT limited to) the insanity of the “Aggressive Handshake” case, some prosecutors are adding to the problem. It’s really getting scary out here.

  5. Plus ca change….

    A little history:

    In the 1940’s and continuing into the fifties, the Murphy-instituted Civil Rights division of the DOJ brought many cases against local police forces and correction facilities on charges of abusive behavior, both in interrogation and in custody.

    These cases were decided by a Court not unwilling to reach down to the local level using procedural due process arguments. I quoted from two such cases on another thread.

    A great deal of reform was gained.

    It seems as if we are sliding backward again, and once more there are multiplying abuses of nonlethal force and I include tasers here. We need a new DOJ to start taking interest again.

  6. someone had published that in metropolitan cities ‘Viper’ teams were out in force which were a type of swat and local police endeavor

    I disagree with the comment since there are more cameras there is more footage of unbelievable violence

    something has changed within the nation and it is seriously considered that Federalization is the root cause and that local police are reporting to federal agencies and have now received new orders

    the country is aghast, afraid, and ready to take the bull by the horns

    the police departments around the nation will be litigated like the pharmacuticals and they will lose

    it is horrific to witness what happened in that video

    guilty before proven innocent??

    making excuses for that kind of behaviour for someone in handcuffs who could not even stand or sit without assistance is appaling

    that officer can say how right he was a million times, he’s going to trial don’t you think


  7. Hi Patty C, you are correct in picking up the fact that I have not felt too warm toward law enforcement for the last couple of years, for a private reason which I won’t discuss here.

    However, I realize I have to be responsible, careful, and not paint ALL of law enforcement with a tainted brush. That is unfair on my part, and I know I’ve been guilty of going a bit “overboard” on the subject at times. Sorry about that. I know there are many dedicated police officers at all levels who do an excellent job, and don’t indulge in any kind of abuse. I guess I should be reading more of those stories instead. 🙂

  8. Hmmm Chianti – … there you go getting my Italian riled up … now all I want to do tenderize that chicken with the uniform. I often wish our criminal justice system permitted victims to request particular options in punishment. Like a re-match with stuffed capon posing as a police officer, where he gets the wear the jewelry and color the floor. Sorry … didn’t realize I wrote that down.

  9. Susan, would I be way off if I said it would be difficult not to deduce, from a lot of your recent previous posts, that you don’t have a dinosaur-sized bone to pick with law enforcement, generally, though?

    That’s not to say citizens shouldn’t be concerned.

    Watching the video above, you have to know Officer Willis has been rough with women before and he almost assuredly has issues at home and/or in his past. Garbarino was belligerent and loud but not physically threatening or aggressive – she was trying to walk away from him.

    p.s. Hey, Binx, go for the Turley Zin, if you can get it and YOU probably can in CA, otherwise settle for “a nice Chianti”…

  10. Susan:

    Most assuredly, I’m very sorry to give the impression, through my awkward writing – “It becomes part of the dialog that has occurred here … cops bad – victims good” – that I was referring to your part of the dialog. I should have been clear and explained that I meant the greater ‘Internet dialog.’ Your comments were reasonable and clear – Mine on the other hand – require editing and nice bottle of Amarone or perhaps some 2004 Turley Zinfandel / Hayne Vineyard.

  11. Susan: I think we are hearing about it because of the higher saturation of video recording devices in society as a whole. Polce abuse was always there but nearly impossible to prove. Even if you brought a case, the juries usually gave the polce a pass. Citizen review boards only work at the margins because they are usually dominated by the law and order types or other police professionals who see, speak, and hear no evil. The best safeguard is the media who can highlight these abuses and bring the facts vividly to light. Imagine if it were only a written account by the victim in this case. These videos really help in that regard. As for the fear of “bad guys” driving this behavior, all I can do is repeat the words of Bertrand Russell: “[c]ollective fear stimulates herd instinct, and tends to produce ferocity toward those who are not regarded as members of the herd.” We may find that to SOME law enforcement officers (usually the untrained local-yokel type) those citizens accused of crimes and who do not immediately and slavishly submit to their police authority are not members of their “herd.”

  12. I’ll be the first person to say that I didn’t mean to imply that ALL police officers were bad, and if I gave that impression by my previous post, I apologize for that error.

    But it does alarm me as an average citizen that we are seeing a rising number of these acts of abuse by some police officers. I also find it disturbing that not much is being said by law enforcement officials that they consider such behavior totally unacceptable, and they’re taking steps to be more careful about WHOM they are allowing to become police officers in future.

    Personally, I’d love to see more active “citizen review” boards in more communities, to ask tough questions of our law enforcement officials when such abuses occur, and to try and prevent more of them occurring in future. Has that become less important to everyone in the interests of keeping the “bad guys” off the street?

  13. It’s long way from the days of the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration before it was gobbled up by the National Institute of Justice. LEAA was an organization that was very well intentioned. Not only to culturally understand crime, but to educate and train police officers. That isn’t to say that this training and education doesn’t exist – but what happened was LEAA became a cherry and eventually, my opinion, it’s institutionalization was intended as euthanasia. Now a select group in government the motions and responsible government is nowhere – being a cop in law enforcement has been defined by screenplays and novels.

    You want to hear some outrage ?? Imagine the outrage if the act in this underlying story happened to be committed by someone who is called a Public Safety Officer. The entire dynamic changes. So does the dialog.

    So after this disturbed police officer, who ostensibly made it through Shreveport’s extensive psychological screening process is ceremoniously disemboweled or promoted what happens to the story. It becomes part of the dialog that has occurred here … cops bad – victims good. But unlike here, that may not necessarily be true. What’s behind this wave of violence by police? Or is it less and we’re just seeing more of it because of our Web enabled society?

    One thing is for sure – we need to train those that are tasked to deal with public safety in another way. It may sound infuriating to those that have been abused by police – I understand this reaction completely – but this dialog begins with the leadership of our country. In a nutshell – we permitted our government to be run by the equivalent of a suspected crime family. We accepted platitudes and marched our bravest and the newly brave into a cauldron that we created by invading a sovereign nation and ruthlessly created millions of refugees and militants. Not only does the economic
    consequence trickle down, but so do the enormous social ramifications of how we respect others in this world and in our neighborhood. It may have been the singular reason that LEAA was created originally – because our Nation at war (Viet Nam) seemed to be connected to increasing police related violence around the country.

    Don’t get me wrong – this is a grave tragedy. This woman was beaten because the police officer wanted to hurt her and because the Shreveport Police department is dysfunctional and apparently out of control. If one police officer calmly knew to turn off that camera and casually turns it back on after he caused that kind of physical harm to an essentially defenseless human being – the department chain of command has other problems. No question.

    That being said – getting the cops head on a stick is only a temporary fix – we need to return to the dialog that escalating anti-Vietnam sentiment quelled. Peace Officer / Public Safety Officer and a great degree of attention to the selection, training and on-going evaluation and continuing education of those responsible for ensuring public safety, including community accountability which puts public safety back in forefront.

    The initials LEAA were adopted by another organization – the Law Enforcement Assistance Alliance = which is supposed to be an organization of Crime fighters and Victims – but has only Crime fighters on its board and is apparently a lobbying organization. It has nothing to do with the former organization that had Congressional oversight and was responsible for promoting education in Criminal Justice, Forensic Science and public affairs, including scholarships and tuition assistance. However, I find it most curious that they adopted the otherwise distinguished handle.

  14. This is happening all over the country. Whether it is video evidence in police cars or in police stations they are turning off the video to commit crimes and get away with it. I know. I have been there. We need a new law. ALL Video evidence should NOT be allowed to be turned off ever. All video evidence should immediately be dropped off at an alternate location, news media. BEFORE any video evidence is viewed there should be 3 media people present and 5 citizens not affiliated with ANY police officers in any way. The ONLY way to stop criminal police is to not ALLOW them to handle ANY evidence. In my case the first video was altered so badly that you could see the time change back and forth. The first officer shut off his video. They rearrested me for the second arrest. The intake photo had my cheek bone completely missing. We couldn’t have the intake photo evidence examined as it came up “missing” as all evidence that they don’t want you to view does. A ban needs to be in place of ALL digital photos. Only the instant photos should be allowed in police stations. I am afraid technology is being abused by all officers.

  15. I have no doubt that what is shown on this video will be enough to convince ME of what happened after the camera was turned off. However, as the videotape shown repeatedly during the famous — or should I say infamous — Florida “Boot Camp Trial” aired on Court TV during November or December, 2007, a videotape of such damning actions is no assurance of a conviction. Even when guilt is obvious for everyone to see.

    That tape was played at least once during the actual trial, and viewers saw, many times, how these so-called “corrections officers” treated a 14-year-old youth, Martin Anderson when he was in medical distress. I saw it at least three times, if not more. One of the officers actually struck Martin, more than once. A nurse, who was also charged, was just watching, and from what I could see, made no attempt to actively intervene while this was going on. Nevertheless, all seven defendants were found “Not Guilty.” I was stunned to hear that, not to mention furious.

    This latest outrage by “law enforcement’s finest” may end the same way if it becomes a criminal case. People are still too willing to give cops a pass on their obvious criminal behavior, as long as it isn’t THEY who are the victims of abusive police or corrections officers. 🙁

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