Are The Criminal Charges Against The Buffalo Police Officers Excessive?

Buffalo-Cops-APBuffalo police officers Robert McCabe and Aaron Torgalski has now been charged with second degree assault over an injury to a protester.  The criminal charges and the call from Gov. Andrew Cuomo for them to be fired has triggered a mass resignation of the Buffalo Emergency Response Team.  While Cuomo viewed the evidence as so clear to justify immediate termination, the two officers have a strong criminal defense under the statute.  The officers are shown pushing back activist Martin Gugino, 75, who fell back and hit his head, suffering a very serious injury.  The charge is second-degree assault.  The video that prompted Cuomo’s call for termination is likely to be the strongest evidence for the defense, which will argue that there was no excess force used in the incident.  A contrast can be drawn to the videotape of George Floyd were the excessive force is shockingly clear, as in this video. and this video as examples. There have been many other videos played at these protests that do strike me as excessive force against protesters, including the inexcusable attack on Australian journalists in Lafayette Park as well as others. There is no question that there is a serious injury in this case and there are allegations that the officers were not sufficiently responsive to the injury, the key to such prosecutions as the one in New York will be establishing the intent element.

Here is the videotape:


In the background, you can hear someone say “push him back” as the police seek to clear the area. It is standard for police to shove back individuals as a line moves forward. The question is whether this shove constitutes not just excessive force (subject to disciplinary action) but an actual crime of assault.  An eyewitness who was highly critical of the police action is also quoted as saying that he thought the fall after the shove was “an accident.”  He is likely to be called to any trial and that statement would be admissible in any examination.

On Sunday morning Rep. Karen Bass told CNN’s Jake Tapper that the incident showed police not stopping and not rendering aid. It is true that the officers involving in the shoving did not stop. However, this video shows the officers taking another person into custody and (around the 22 second marker) other officers rendering aid. The point is only that much more needs to be known in the case:

A Class D felony is punishable by up to seven years in prison.  It is defined at Section 120.05 as acting “intent to cause serious physical injury to another person, he causes such injury to such person or to a third person.”

The jury instruction for this charge includes the following provision:

“INTENT means conscious objective or purpose. Thus, a person acts with intent to cause serious physical injury to another when that person’s conscious objective or purpose is to cause serious physical injury to another.”

It also includes a proviso in a footnote: “See Penal Law § 15.05(1). If necessary, an expanded definition of “intent” is available in the section on Instructions of General Applicability under Culpable Mental States.”  That provision however also defines ““Intentionally” as a “person acts intentionally with respect to a result or to conduct described by a statute defining an offense when his conscious objective is to cause such result or to engage in such conduct.” (Perhaps some of our New York attorneys could help out on clarifying this point because I could not find additional cases).

The choice between a charge of assault in the second as opposed to the third degree is significant. Conviction of assault in the third degree has a lower standard but it is a misdemeanor that often does not result in jail time as a class misdemeanor. Under Pen. Law § 129.00, person is guilty of assault in the third degree when:

1. With intent to cause physical injury to another person, he causes such injury to such person or to a third person;  or

2. He recklessly causes physical injury to another person;  or

3. With criminal negligence, he causes physical injury to another person by means of a deadly weapon or a dangerous instrument.

If prosecutors were intent on a criminal charge, the third degree standard would fit the videotape more readily given the options of reckless action or the use of a deadly weapon through criminal negligence.

It is hard to see from this video a clear intent to cause serious physical injury in this videotape.  Gugino takes a number of steps backward as he tried to stay on his feet but then takes the hard fall.

In the news conference, District Attorney John Flynn said the officers “crossed a line.”  As someone who have both represented and sued law enforcement, that assertion is likely to be severely tested in court.

Cuomo insisted that the video was clear and warrants immediate termination: “Why? Why was that necessary? Where was the threat? It’s just fundamentally offensive and frightening. How did we get to this place?”

While this will hardly be popular in today’s environment, it is not clear from a criminal law perspective.  Pushing and shoving back protesters is a standard police practice, which is why officers are irate that any protest control tactics will involve a risk of protesters or officers falling.

Frankly, absent additional evidence, I would be surprised if Flynn could make this case stick before a jury given this videotape.

This may reflect my background as a criminal defense attorney, but my primary objection however is to Cuomo’s comments in calling for termination before any due process has been afforded. The mayor has refused to support Cuomo’s call and instead insisted that the officers should be given their day in court. I do not see how Cuomo can conclusively make this determination without more evidence and an opportunity for these officers to present a defense. Conversely, I do not see the basis for the mayor to call Gugino a “major instigator” because he had been told repeatedly to leave.  Even if he was refusing to comply, the video does not show that he was an instigator in terms of what followed in his serious injury.

223 thoughts on “Are The Criminal Charges Against The Buffalo Police Officers Excessive?”

  1. If Darren has to wade through our filth, he should have some satisfactory music.

  2. Jonathan: As a “criminal defense attorney” it is understandable you would want to come to the defense of the police officers in Buffalo who shoved Martin Gugino, 75, to the pavement injuring him severely. Judging from the comments of some of your followers they agree the officers should not be charged. One comment was succinct: “…he brung it on himself”. Another: “The old coot is a Communist activist and an Oscar nominee for taking that fall”. No sympathy in these comments! However, other comments were more relevant. One diligent researcher pointed out that under Section 120,05, part 12, a police officer can be charged with excessive use of force if done “with the intent to cause physical injury to a person who is sixty-five years of age or older”– a section you conveniently ignore. Of course, the operative word is “intent” which is grist for an enterprising defense attorney. Another comment noted Gugino is not a “Communist” but “is a longtime peace activist and volunteer at the Catholic worker, a movement dedicated to justice and peace”.

    Now it appears from the video that Gugino was no physical threat to the police. Nevertheless, they pushed him to the pavement where he struck his head–apparently unconscious and bleeding from the ear. Instead of coming to his assistance they left Gugino on the pavement and simply walked around him. Now given his age the police could have taken Gugino into custody and/or arrested him instead of using force. But the police in Buffalo, Minneapolis and around the country think they are entitled to carry out “street justice”–even against peaceful protesters. But that’s not the way it is supposed to work when the Constitution guarantees citizens the right to assemble and peacefully protest the actions of their government. So when the police exceed their authority, as they did in this case, they should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

  3. The Video Looks Damming

    But The Protester Was Wrong

    The police are clearly warning Protestor Gugino to ‘back off’. Yet presumptuously Gugino keeps advancing as though his age makes him clearly ‘non-threatening’. This was a case of White Privilege on Gugino’s part. A Black man that age might take cops seriously in that situation. But Gugino is determined to test the cops.

    What happens next is the first shove puts Gugino off-balance. In that off-balance position, Gugino is helpless against the second shove which lays him out completely. Again, it looks damming on video, but Gugino was at fault for willfully disregarding police orders.

    When cops yell ‘back off’, they mean exactly that. They’re in no mood to be tested.

  4. Floyd’s underlying health conditions were not the cause of his death.

    The medical examiner stated “Cause of death: Cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint, and neck compression. Manner of death: Homicide”
    Two other physicians carried out a secondary autopsy; one of them, Dr. Michael Baden, said “The cause of death, in my opinion, is asphyxia due to compression of the neck” and also agreed that it was homicide.

    Deal honestly with the facts of the case.

    1. Sooo, exactly what are the facts?

      1. We see the police restraining Floyd.
      2. We see Floyd either losing consciousness or dying while under restraint.

      Now, most people tend to put those two together, mix in a little Post hoc ergo propter hoc* and conclude that the restraint caused Floyd’s death.

      PERHAPS, it did here. HOWEVER, there is a whole nother possibility that could have happened. Excited Syndrome Disorder (ExDS). It is usually the result of drugs. We know from the autopsy that Floyd had fentanyl, morphine, meth and pot in his system. We know he was acting weird BEFORE he fell down and had to be restrained. The autopsy revealed no signs of strangulation, or other types of trauma from the restraint.

      We also know from a 2009 White Paper Report of the American College of Emergency Physicians, that ExDS is a real thing, and people can die from ExSD. They determined that the person with ExDS needed to be restrained by all persons present until medical help arrived because that was the best option. Unrestrained people with ExDS can hurt themselves if not restrained.That paper also recognized that people can die while being restrained, and before medical help arrived.

      Some excerpts from that paper:

      “Stimulant drug use, including cocaine, methamphetamine, and PCP, demonstrates a well established association with ExDS and is usually associated with cases of ExDS death.”

      “These subjects are hyperaggressive with bizarre behavior, and are impervious to pain, combative, hyperthermic and tachycardic. There is typically a struggle with law enforcement that involves physical,noxious chemical, or ECD use followed by a period of quiet and sudden death. ”

      “Given the irrational and potentially violent, dangerous, and lethal behavior of an ExDS subject, any LEO interaction with a person in this situation risks significant injury or death to either the LEO or the ExDS subject who has a potentially lethal medical syndrome.This already challenging situation has the potential for intense public scrutiny coupled with the expectation of a perfect outcome. Anything less creates a situation of potential public outrage. Unfortunately, this dangerous medical situation makes perfect outcomes difficult in many circumstances.”

      “Medical Examiners are often required to render a decision as to the cause of death in cases that involve patients in police custody with multiple con-founding variables such as pre-existing health conditions, concomitant illicit substance use, and underlying psychiatric conditions. Lack of complete prior medical information, especially underlying cardiac and metabolic pathology, hampers the ascertainment of the actual cause of death when only autopsy results are interpreted.”

      “In subjects who do not respond to verbal calming and de-escalation techniques, control measures area prerequisite for medical assessment and intervention. When necessary,this should be accomplished as rapidly and safely as possible. Recent research indicates that physical struggle is a much greater contributor to catecholamine surge and metabolic acidosis than other causes of exertion or noxious stimuli.Since these parameters are thought to contribute to poor outcomes in ExDS, the specific physical control methods employed should optimally minimize the time spent struggling, while safely achieving physical control. The use of multiple personnel with training in safe physical control measures is encouraged. ”

      “In those cases where a death occurs while in custody, there is the additional difficulty of separating any potential contribution of control measures from the underlying pathology. For example,was death due to the police control tool, or to positional asphyxia, or from ExDS, or from interplay of all these factors? ”

      Sooo, what is the upshot of all this? It means that a person committed to honest discussion can not presume from what he or she saw that the four cops are guilty of murder. Nor can the performers of autopsies, or mere viewers of autopsies such as Dr. Baden. Particularly when there is NO EVIDENCE of ASPHIXIATION is found in the autopsy.

      Such a person would be engaging in Post hoc ergo propter hoc reasoning.

      Squeeky Fromm
      Girl Reporter

      * Post hoc ergo propter hoc (Latin: “after this, therefore because of this”) is an informal fallacy that states: “Since event Y followed event X, event Y must have been caused by event X.” It is often shortened simply to post hoc fallacy.

      1. Squeeky Fromm, the coroner, who knows lots more than you, concluded homicide. So let it go.

        1. Why did he conclude homicide? I did not see anything in his report which mentioned ExDS, so it appears that possibility was skipped. We know the cops were thinking ExDS because one of them said so on the videos.

          Plus, I would remind you that Medical Examiners have to get up on a stand, swear an oath, and then defend their conclusions. And, when the Medical Examiner did not even mention ExDS, I would presume he is going to have some splaining to do.

          But, you can be a good little follower and accept whatever conclusions the State puts out there. I mean, it’s not like they are under any pressure here from protesters and rioters, right. Because it is inconceivable that they would simply throw cops under the bus to please the crowds, right???

          Squeeky Fromm
          Girl Reporter

          1. I read that Floyd had Covd-19. So the cause of death should be listed as Covid-19. That’s how they’ve been told to fill out the forms during the pandemic right. Cause of death is to be listed as Covid-19 death IF THE PERSON HAD COVID.

        2. David Benson is the God Emperor of Making Stuff Up and owes me forty-four citations (one from the OED, one from the town ordinances and two from the Old Testament), an equation and the source of a quotation, after seventy-eight weeks, and needs to cite all his work from now on. – I am suspicious of Baden’s autopsy report which does not take into account tissue samples and the drug screen. The charging report is also strange, they wrestle him into the back seat and then for some reason (unexplained in the charging document) they take him out of the vehicle and put him face down on the ground. Somewhere in all of that (also not in the charging document) an ambulance was called.

          1. First of all, Baden did NOT do an autopsy. I have told committed that before. Baden talked to the family and watched the video.

            IIRC, they could not get Floyd into the vehicle, and when they stopped trying to get him into the back seat, Floyd stiffened up and fell down. Which, sounds like “wooden chest” syndrome to me.

            Squeeky Fromm
            Girl Reporter

            1. As Paul noted, Baden “saw and touched the body.” Dr. Allecia Wilson was there, as well.


              “Dr. Baden said the full autopsy included information he did not have access to, such as the toxicology results showing Mr. Floyd had fentanyl in his system. He added that when he conducted the autopsy, part of the heart was not provided — the part that showed coronary artery disease.”

              ‘But there was nothing in the full autopsy that made him change his medical opinion. “Restraint is what caused the death,” he said.’

              1. Squeeky – as far as I know from Baden’s report, he saw and touched the body. They paid him enough. BTW, the GoFundMe for the family is well over $11 million.

                1. Baden did the second autopsy with forensic pathologist Dr. Allecia Wilson — so it wasn’t just Baden.

                2. PaulCS:

                  I am still not sure if Baden was there, or if the sources I used were referring to the fact that Baden admitted that he could not find any trace of asphixia through the autopsy he may or may not have conducted.

                  Because Baden admits that the video is how he determined there was asphixia. See here:


                  Squeeky Fromm
                  Girl Reporter

              2. Squeeky…….I was just halfway paying attention because it was early morning on Fox and Friends….but since Baden is so well respected, I was interested . Brian Kilmeade asked ” and part of the heart was missing by the time you saw it, right?” Baden said oh, yes. His exam was incomplete…..
                Did anyone report that?

                  1. Anonymous and Commit to honest….
                    Most days i use a Samsung tablet that is about 6″ long……it’s difficult to see the surrounding comments…..I cannot copy and paste on here and sometimes cannot access links provided.
                    If this is irritating to you, feel free to scroll on by without stopping.

                1. LOL, you ask whether anyone reported it while citing Baden himself reporting it in the media.

                  And he and his colleague, Dr. Allecia Wilson, have been quite up front that they didn’t have access to all of Mr. Floyd’s complete organs for their autopsy:

                  “Wilson noted that second autopsies have some limitations. ‘Certain parts of the organs have been retained by the original pathologist’ …”

                  1. Well, this is confusing. I went to your link and found this:
                    While attorneys and doctors hired by the Floyd family did not release their written autopsy reports, saying they were still awaiting some additional results, they did describe their findings in some detail.

                    To come to their conclusions, they said they viewed the public videos of Floyd being pinned by Chauvin, as well as a report put together by EMT staff who worked on Floyd and examined the parts of his body to which they had access.

                    “The compressive pressure of the neck and back are not seen at autopsy because the pressure has been released by the time the body comes to the medical examiner’s office,” said Dr. Michael Baden, a forensic pathologist who performed an autopsy on behalf of the Floyd family.

                    “It can only be seen — serious compressive pressure on the neck and back can only be seen while the pressure is being applied or when, as in this instance, it is captured on video.”
                    So that makes me think Baden and Allecia only did a very limited examination, if at all, and got most of their conclusions from the video.

                    I would like to see the actual autopsy they did and see their notes.

                    Squeeky Fromm
                    Girl Reporter

                    1. Squeeky – I am wondering if they charged the wrong cop? Maybe they should have charged the cop who was kneeling on his back and stomach?

                    2. PaulCS:

                      Actually, if the cause of death was “mechanical asphixiation” that would be correct. Technically, “mechanical asphixiation” does NOT include damage to the neck. I discovered that fact the first day Baden’s “autopsy” came out.

                      That definition is supposed to mean compression of the back or chest, but I also discovered that the term was used more loosely in the past, and is still sort of up in the air.

                      But yes, you are right. The person with the knee in the back is more likely than Chauvin to be responsible, if indeed, any of the four officers are guilty of anything.

                      Personally, I think they are all innocent, but pretty much at the mercy of the mob, like Poor Darren Wilson and Poor George Zimmerman.

                      The Left/DNC NEEDS the four cops to be guilty of murder to support their race-baiting and race narrative. That is why the reason that it may have been a simple mistake is shunned, or the fact Floyd may have killed his own self by the drugs he recently took.

                      Squeeky Fromm
                      Girl Reporter

        3. I’m sure they’ll be calling Squeeky Fromm, Girl Reporter, as an expert witness. lol

      2. David Roddy, Chief of Police, Chattanooga, TN:

        David Roddy

        There is no need to see more video. There no need to wait to see how “it plays out”. There is no need to put a knee on someone’s neck for NINE minutes. There IS a need to DO something. If you wear a badge and you don’t have an issue with this…turn it in.

        4:34 PM · May 27, 2020·Twitter

            1. maybe the know-it-all little girl reporter should give him a call

              where did you get your medical degree? oh, wait. you don’t have one, either.

              1. I don’t have a medical degree. I just have an American College of Emergency Physicians White Paper Report on Excited Delirium Syndrome, and really good reading comprehension skills! I can give you the report! Here it is:


                However, I can not give you good reading skills, or honesty. Wish I could.

                Squeeky Fromm
                Girl Reporter

                1. All of your reports aside, this — again — from David Roddy:

                  “There is no need to put a knee on someone’s neck for NINE minutes. There IS a need to DO something. If you wear a badge and you don’t have an issue with this…turn it in.”

                  4:34 PM · May 27, 2020·Twitter

                  I don’t need your help, but you surely need some. I hope you get it.

                2. I don’t see someone who appears to be suffering from excited delirium when drugs of abuse can cause agitation, hyperthermia, and sudden death. -Judy Melinek, MD

                  Forensic Pathologist Breaks Down George Floyd’s Death

                  — An outside perspective on viral videos, autopsy findings, and the medical examiner’s role

                  by Judy Melinek MD June 5, 2020


                  The fact that Floyd appears to be talking to the officer and the officer is taking notes suggests that Floyd is engaging in dialogue. The gait disturbance suggests that Floyd may have been under the influence of alcohol or some other drug that could affect his balance. The grimace as he is being handled suggests that the cuffs are on too tight or that he is in pain during this encounter as the officer pulls up on his cuffed arms. Here’s what I don’t see: I don’t see someone who appears to be suffering from excited delirium when drugs of abuse can cause agitation, hyperthermia, and sudden death. Floyd is not naked or dressed inappropriately for the weather. He does not appear to be sweating profusely. He does not appear to be agitated or violent.

                  A short bystander video from another perspective shows three police officers kneeling on Floyd while another stands at his head. They appear to be exerting pressure on his neck, torso, left (still handcuffed) arm, and legs. Pressure on the torso can limit chest rise, and added pressure on other parts of the body can decrease cardiac return (the volume of blood coming back from the limbs).

                  Looking at a longer, unedited bystander video posted on Facebook, the first thing I notice is that Floyd’s voice sounds gravelly, and he repeatedly says, “I can’t breathe.” EMS and police are sometimes trained that anyone who says “I can’t breathe” is lying — because if you can speak, you can breathe. This is not true, and there are many reasons why people might say “I can’t breathe” and still be in medical distress. These reasons include increasing fatigue of respiratory muscles; blockage of pulmonary blood flow; incomplete airway obstruction; and acidosis, a buildup of acid in the blood which triggers an increased breathing rate and causes the sensation of shortness of breath.

                  — Judy Melinek, MD, is a forensic pathologist and CEO of PathologyExpert Inc. Her New York Times bestselling memoir, co-authored with her husband, writer T.J. Mitchell, is Working Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical Examiner.

                  1. She did not mention the part where Floyd was struggling against the cops half in the car. Or that Floyd stiffened up and fell down.

                    So frankly, I don’t know how much of the action she saw. But here is what is the important part. Did the four officers reasonably believe that Floyd was suffering from ExDS?

                    That is what one of them said. Because if they did, then their actions were not a form of murder. They did what they were supposed to do – restrain Floyd so he would not hurt himself.

                    Squeeky Fromm
                    Girl Reporter

                  2. Anonymous – Judy Melinek does not take into account the video of four officers trying to get Floyd into the back of the SUV. And we still haven’t seen body cameras of them taking him out of the SUV and why. I think Judy is jumping the gun.

      3. Is this Squeeky’s source?

        Minneapolis Disaster: Fentanyl, Methamphetamine & Excited Delirium
        The Case Against Officer Derek Chauvin Is Anything But Solid

        by Law Officer

        Here’s an interesting comment, with 39 ‘likes’:

        “As a cop for 25 years and have taught Arrest and Control techniques for most of that time, the officers’ action are inexcusable!! Period, end of story and if you don’t see that I don’t know what more there is to say. We DO NOT place our knee on a suspect’s neck! We do not leave that pressure for more than 8 minutes. We DO move suspects into a position of recovery (on their side or seated) as soon as possible and without compromising safety. This most definitely should have happened when he went unconscious, if not before. There was absolutely NO medical attention given by the officers after he went unresponsive. I’m sure they may argue the facts of the autopsy results, an argument I may have listened to, if not for the absolute depravity and inexcusable actions of the officers! PERIOD!!” -Terry Miller

        1. “We DO move suspects into a position of recovery (on their side or seated) as soon as possible and without compromising safety.”

          IIRC, one of the officers suggested rolling G. Floyd onto his side and he was told “no.”

          1. Anonymous – the officer seems to have suggested moving Floyd on his side after they couldn’t get a pulse.

        2. Yes, that is my source. But also read the other responses to that comment.

          The whole point is, MAYBE the four cops killed Floyd. If so, probably unintentionally because who is going to kill someone on purpose in front of many cameras.

          But MAYBE, they didn’t kill him at all because Floyd was a long time drug addict, and he had Fentanyl, meth, morphine and pot in his system, and Covid19 and heart problems to boot.

          I think it is impossible to know for sure what killed Floyd, and therefore there is reasonable doubt. Very reasonable doubt.

          Squeeky Fromm
          Girl Reporter

          1. Squeaky, you are making a lot of good arguments. You have instilled a grain of doubt in my mind that did not exist before. Go to law school.

            1. Thank you Allan!!! I am glad you are having doubts. I do too, and the problem is there is just no sure way to tell from an autopsy. I read somewhere that where there is strangulation, there are little things, I forget the name, that show up in the lungs 85% of the time. They did not here, but were they part of that 15%?

              Who knows? If they ever put a law school in town, I am going, One of these days, I may even move to go to law school. I wonder why they can’t do law school on line???

              Squeeky Fromm
              Girl Reporter

              1. I thought California had law schools on line, but I can’t be sure.

                I think he deserves a guilty sentence and I still think he is guilty of some type of manslaughter charge but now I am not certain. Based on where I thought you lived I think there are law schools that you can get to. You already have about 75% of what lawyers have. All you are missing are a few of the details. The Bar exam is a lot of multiple choice. In a lot of areas you could probably guess a lot of the answers right now without any study. You wouldn’t pass but you wouldn’t start at zero.

          2. Floyd would probably still be alive is he hadn’t had a run-in with those cops.

            We’ll see how things go at trial.

            There were four cops and Floyd could have been restrained in a different manner — one that wouldn’t have killed him.


              “Nicholas A. Christakis

              A nurse carrying a terrific sign at the protest against police brutality in Seattle today. “Nurses deal with drugged and combative patients on a daily basis, but I never had to kill a single one to get them under control.” via @DAChristakis who is on the scene.”

              There are ‘restraint and control techniques’ that work, but don’t kill:


              1. Anonymous – that hospital has a staff to restrain him while they pump new drugs into him. Those officers did not have that option.

                1. Yes, Paul. I’m well aware of that.

                  The cops should have called for an ambulance immediately. And there were four officers who could have used their skills and training to appropriately restrain GF, until an ambulance arrived, if necessary. Chauvin’s preference was for a knee to the neck for almost nine minutes, as you know.

                  “Paramedics find better drug to tame violent patients”


                  How much is spent each year teaching cops de-escalation techniques?

                  A lot.

                  1. Anonymous – it appears from a tape I saw today that they called for an ambulance twice.

                    1. There were four of them — and they are trained in how to deal with these sorts of situations. as you know.

                      When did they first call for an ambulance? Do have a link to the tape?

                    2. Anonymous – Dr. Grande did a mental health take down on YT, so check his site.

                    3. Anonymous – I am not 100% sure that when Floyd “fell” he wasn’t actually having a stroke. If he can say I can’t breath 16 times, he is breathing.

  5. So it looks like from what’s available individual was pushing or shoving forward into the police which is assault and battery on the part of the assailant. Police shoving back is one of the first and low responses. The assailant tripped and hit his own head. The charge had he survived wouls be assault and battery on an officer of the law who acted in defense of the assault. Now I have as much evidence as the leftist news cared to offer but it was enough to easily make that legal distinction.

    1. Make that assault and battery on an officer of the law who in the performance of his duty used minimum force necessary. It was a form of accidental suicide on the part of the assailant.

      1. What bullsh*t.

        As can be seen in a slow motion video, Gugino was *not* “pushing or shoving forward into the police,” much less engaged in “assault and battery” –

  6. As you grow older, you don’t get less clumsy.

    I’d tell the officers if they want to clock a septuagenarian, there’s a man living outside of Gainesville, Florida who is a more fitting target.

    1. In terms of the video the assailant was guilty of no less than assault since as part of the ‘mob’ he was moving forward and the ‘mob’ was in assault mode. The
      assembly was in no way peaceful as required by Constituional Law – First Amendment. The police were using minimum force necessary too restore order and in doing so restore peace which is supportive of the General Welfare.

  7. A contrast can be drawn to the videotape of George Floyd were the excessive force is shockingly clear, as in this video. and this video as examples.

    It isn’t. He had coronary artery disease, was intoxicated with fentanyl, had three other street drugs in his system, and was non-compliant when they tried to put him in the back of the car. The neck hold is not, per law enforcement sources, all that unusual.

      1. True. It has been ruled a homicide, and now we move to that little thingy called a “trial”, where a thingy called a “defense” gets presented.

        I am pretty sure the ExDS thing will be brought up. I even look forward to Derek Chauvin and three other persons performing a restraint maneuver on a person without a system full of meth, fentanyl, morphine and pot in their system – in front of a jury.

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

    1. Absurd is famous for his on-line medical diagnosis and will no doubt be called as an expert in the Minneapolis police officers’ defenses. He’s simply destroyed the two separate autopsy reports which cited “homicide”. They probably meant “homosexual, died of aids”.

      1. I’m actually quoting the local coroner’s autopsy report.

  8. Listen to this video. If you don’t have the time now listen for a few minutes starting at 6 minutes. Chauvin deserves to be charged but why have so many people been killed and so much of our cities destroyed for George Floyd. At around 12 minutes she talks about the real statistics.

  9. The guy was trying to scan their radios and security devices with his cell phone, look close at his right hand and the cell phone in it. Was he trying to clone the police communication devices??? Him doing that was clearly an attempt to hijack communication from the police.

    1. He has a phone in his hand, but you’ve presented no evidence that he “was trying to scan their radios and security devices with his cell phone,” much less that he was “trying to clone the police communication devices” or “attempt[ing] to hijack communication from the police.”

      You have an evidenceless conjecture.
      Best not to confuse conjectures and facts.

      1. But, but, but – that is what you are doing when you presume Poor Derek Chauvin guilty of murder! You see the restraint and you see Floyd passing out or dying and you assume post hoc that the restraint is what killed him. When there is a perfectly medically sound alternative – ExDS!

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

  10. Mr. Smith,

    Mr. Turley’s Civility Rule pages says “I will delete abusive comments when I see them or when they are raised to me. If the conduct continues, I will consider banning the person responsible.”

    I’ve been told that you work on comment moderation here. I don’t know if that’s correct, but if it is, please tell me what information is needed re: people who repeatedly post abusive comments.

    For example, do you need permalinks to the comments? something else in addition?

    Also, do I send the request to Mr. Turley’s GWU email, or is there some other email address that I should use?


    1. Commit, certain conservatives have the right to be as abusive as they want. But liberals hitting back at those conservatives will have their comments deleted.

  11. Are the charges excessive?? Not at all. As anyone involved in the criminal justice system knows these are initial charges which will be negotiated down. The bad actors both had a choice and the LEO;s made the wrong one. Just like in the case of citizens sometimes charges are brought to make an example and from what I have seen it is about time.

    1. “Are the charges excessive?? Not at all.”

      I feel sorry that the man was injured but did the man have a right to scan the data of the police officer that might endanger police officers.? What was he doing when the police were moving forward? Where does the man live, locally or elsewhere. Is he a known agitator?

      In other words you know nothing of the case yet you bloviate about what should or should not be done.

      1. Yes, he does have a right to scan the data of the police. But no, he was not doing that because that is not something that phones do.

        1. Molly, maybe we should have someone scan your credit cards and your phone…maybe your computer as well. That is our right, isn’t it?

          Don’t you think you would call the police if that happened?

          What do you think would that information be used for? More rioting and more death? Are you that bloody?

      2. I kind of like slapstick. Regrettable the man hadn’t trained for it.

  12. The protester took the risk of violating police orders. The protester presumably knew his own age. The outrage mob does not consider these facts. Politicians make themselves tools of the outrage mob because the public pays the bill for the wrongful termination suit.

    1. This was supposed to have been posted as a reply to FishWings below, but became unthreaded due to a tech glitch.

  13. I don’t have a problem with what the two cops did. If the old codger refused to obey orders, then he brung this on himself. You can’t have a bunch of Sunday School teachers, Quakers and Unitarians trying to police the country. We Americans are a wild bunch, and when we get out of order, we need someone stronger than us to make us behave.

    Plus, why in the world is all this George Floyd crap even a NATIONAL protest? And now n International one too. Gee, if one drugged up Negro is allegedly killed by the cops in Minneapolis, why are people in Buffalo protesting??? There are a gazillion regimes around the world doing horrible things to their people, and we see nothing like this.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

    1. Squeeky Fromm, either start a thorough study of history or just go back to cutting out paper dolls.

      1. David Benson is the God Emperor of Making Stuff Up and owes me forty-four citations (one from the OED, one from the town ordinances and two from the Old Testament), an equation and the source of a quotation, after seventy-eight weeks, and needs to cite all his work from now on. – some of us actually took history, David.

    2. “Plus, why in the world is all this George Floyd crap even a NATIONAL protest? And now n International one too.”

      Squeeky, That tells us the funding is international and has little to do with George Floyd. The world has had a lot of unrest since Covid and I think certain state actors might be involved at least partially.

      1. Plus, I think a lot of people, especially the white protesters, are just out there for the heck of it, because they wanted to get outside and be a part of the crowd. One of my younger family members went out and protested yesterday and she is sort of a dingbat to start off with. But she does her best to stay away from large groups of blacks, which anybody with any sense does. She doesn’t go to the fair for example, because of all the blacks wandering around the place.

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

  14. After the video became viral, it’s clear what happened. Cuomo played the outrage card, and squeezed Brown to suspend the two cops immediately. But then, all 57 cops in the unit resigned, and Brown knew he goofed bad. So on Friday, the feeble, elderly victim became an “agitator”. Ah, the comedy continues.

  15. The real question is whether, if what the officers did was a crime, it would be possible for police to clear an area or to hold a line against protesters. It would not. Perhaps new laws are due concerning use of force when the police are responding to disperse rioters. Otherwise we tell them to march and then we tell them they will be arrested if someone is in their way and is injured when pushed.

  16. It’s only a matter of time before someone here on Turley’s blog says that he was a paid actor from Antifa. He most likely learned stunt falling from years of training. Really, how many 75 year old people fall like that, and that tripping backwards part should have given it away. And that fake blood, it didn’t look real did it?

    1. Fishstick……….Fall Down Freddy caused this to happen. Help was called immediately, as seen in the video. IMMEDIATELY.
      Everyone knows when someone falls, esp an older person, you do not move them…you do not touch them….You wait for paramedics, which in this case were no more than a couple of blocks away.

      1. Does not surprise me a bit. Ya know, it’s getting harder to tell the difference between the Russian bots and just ole Trump supporters anymore, they both speak the same BS. And don’t kid yourself, the bots are here. The Russians follow Trump supporters, and they know what Turley has turned his page into.

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