Showing posts with label The Free thought project. Show all posts
Showing posts with label The Free thought project. Show all posts
An infuriating video has been shared with the Free Thought Project displaying simply how sadistic and in poor health some of the police officers working the protests are. A non-violent, unarmed, and arguably harmless man was once working towards his proper to free speech when he was once pepper-sprayed in the face and then shot with a tear fuel grenade. The Grand Rapids police branch is now claiming to have opened an "Investigation" into the completely horrifying acts of their officers. As he tries to capture his breath from being sprayed, some other officer takes purpose with his tear fuel grenade launcher and shoots him in the face with it. "It's despicable, this younger man is without a doubt taking walks closer to the officers lets even supply them the advantage of the doubt," Ven Johnson, a police brutality attorney, said. Above is a video illustrating why there is so a lot of anger directed at police proper now? These humans are making an attempt to protest police brutality and the police react with greater brutality.

Drop the Complaint or Be Arrested, CTA Supervisor Arrested for Reporting Cop for Assault

A question we ask often here at the Free Thought Project is this: when a cop commits a crime against you, where do you report it? The only place you can report a crime is to law enforcement, so you have no other choice but to walk inside the belly of the beast who hurt you and report their crime to his or her brothers in blue. As the following case illustrates, this is problematic for many reasons and can turn innocent victims into falsely accused criminals in an instant.
Chicago Transit Authority supervisor, Martesa Lee was assaulted by a Chicago police officer while doing her job on the Red Line platform earlier this year. So, she took the only option available to her to report it and went to the officer’s supervisor to lodge a complaint. Instead of taking her complaint, however, the police told her to get lost or get arrested.
Body camera video of the interaction was just released this week which captured the chilling interaction of intimidation and threats.
The incident unfolded in February after a man was reportedly stabbed by a mentally ill woman and found bleeding out on the train track. Lee, who is in charge of the station, went into work mode and assessed whether or not they needed to stop the train or continue normal operations.
When Chicago police arrived, Lee, like she had done many times before, worked alongside the officers to determine the course of action. As the body camera video shows, police declared the area a crime scene but didn’t have enough yellow tape to mark it all off.
Over a dozen people walked through the unmarked “crime scene” but for some reason, Officer Raymond Haran singled out Lee who was arguably allowed to be there since this was her domain and she was the one who discovered the stabbed man.
“You need to get out of the crime scene, ma’am,” he said. “Please get out of the crime scene.”
Lee held up her hand and motioned that she was on the radio, attempting to reroute train traffic and kept walking. That was enough to push officer Haran over the edge and he then grabbed and shoved Lee out of the area.
“Do not touch me,” Lee told Haran.
“Do not go in the crime scene,” Haran replied.
“I’m doing my job,” Lee said. “Don’t touch me.”
The interaction was brief, lasting less than a minute with both Lee and Haran returning to their jobs. Several minutes later, Lee found Haran’s supervisor, Chicago police Sgt. William Spyker to tell him what happened with his officer.
“I was walking and talking. They (the CTA control center staff) were telling me to assess the situation,” she said. “He grabbed me and pushed me.”
“Oh, maybe you were in the crime scene. I’m not sure,” Spyker said. “He wouldn’t grab you just for no reason.”
“He grabbed me and pushed me. Clearly, it can be seen, too, (on the body camera),” Lee responded, adding she “wanted something to be done.”
Lee said originally she had no intention of filing a formal complaint, and only wanted to air her grievances over the assault. But Spyker wanted nothing of it.
“If he tells me that you were obstructing the crime scene, we’re going to arrest you,” Spyker said.
“You aren’t going to arrest me for doing my job,” Lee told him.
“Yes, we are,” the sergeant said. “That’s the way it’s gonna go if you want to complain.”
“Is it worth it to you?” Sgt. Spyker asked her.
Knowing that she had done nothing wrong, Lee told police that it was indeed worth facing arrest to expose the bully cop. That’s when the corrupt Chicago police department followed through with their threat and arrested her.
In front of her co-workers, Lee was put into handcuffs as tears ran down her face. The corrupt officer then offers her several more opportunities to retract her complaint in order to get back her freedom. She stands her ground and refuses.
“He pushed me,” Lee told the officer of her assault, over and over again.
As the Chicago Tribune reports:
A local TV crew appeared at the scene and filmed her from behind. She would appear on television later that night in a story about the stabbing, a close-up of her cuffed hands clearly suggesting that she had been accused of the violent crime. The video is still available on the internet.
“I was humiliated, degraded, embarrassed,” she told the Tribune. “I couldn’t understand why it happened. But after they handcuffed me, I never thought about backing down because I had already been belittled in front of my co-workers and the public. There was no reason to back down at that point.”
Nothing in the arrest report mentioned the fact that before she was arrested, Lee attempted to lodge a complaint.
“This is precisely how the code of silence works,” said Craig Futterman, a University of Chicago law professor who specializes in police accountability issues. “It’s controlling that narrative, it’s manufacturing that narrative in a way that protects the officer from discipline and hides ongoing police abuse.”
Naturally, the department has circled their blue wagons and is refusing to elaborate on the incident, claiming that it is under review by the city’s Civilian Office of Police Accountability.
All officers involved in the threatening and false arrest of Lee have also declined to comment, only denying all wrongdoing. Because she was arrested instead of listened to, Lee has since filed a lawsuit against the department and the taxpayers will be the ones held responsible.
“We cannot answer your specific questions due to the pending litigation, but we dispute the allegations of this case and will continue to defend our position,” said Kathleen Fieweger, spokeswoman for the City of Chicago Law Department, which is representing the officers.

‘All of Them Sat On This Man’: Cops Gave False Story About Floyd’s Death Despite Testimony from Their Own

Following the death of George Floyd, officials with the Minneapolis Police Department were evasive about the actions taken by the officers involved with his arrest. In initial statements to the press, the police department only said that Floyd appeared to be suffering from “medical distress” during the arrest and that he was then taken to a nearby hospital where he passed away.
However, there was no mention of the very likely possibility that Floyd’s “medical distress” was caused by his encounter with the officers who arrested him, in which they all knelt on him for nearly ten minutes. One of the officers, Derek Chauvin, had his knee on Floyd’s next for the length of a viral video which has now sparked protests around the world.
When local police made their initial statement about Floyd’s death, millions of people around the world had already seen the footage of the incident, yet for some reason, their statement disregarded the information revealed in the video.
Eventually, as unrest in the city began to spread, police officials provided numerous updates to their original statement, where they slowly verified facts that had already been well-known to the public and the press. However, in the days following Floyd’s death, the Minneapolis Police Department continued to release incorrect information about the incident that intended to take the blame away from the officers by suggesting that Floyd attempted to resist arrest.
Later, security camera footage that was released by a nearby business showed Floyd peacefully obeying the officer’s commands, contradicting the statements from police.
Earlier this month, Minneapolis Council Member Jeremy Schroeder expressed dismay with the misinformation that was released by the police department in the wake of the killing.
“It is deeply concerning that the information initially circulated by the Minneapolis Police Department early Tuesday morning did not fully reflect the horrifying circumstances surrounding George Floyd’s death. The original news release did not in my view accurately convey the facts or the role of the officers in this tragedy,” Schroeder said, according to the Star Tribune.
Police departments have large streams of information coming in about all of the encounters that officers have with the public, through dash cameras, body cameras, and dispatchers. In theory, all of this information should leave police departments more knowledgeable on these incidents than the press, so there is really no honest excuse to be releasing such incorrect information hours after an event happened. Police officials have blamed the “fluid” situation for their poor communication, but critics argue that they had plenty of time to sort out the facts before their first public statement about the case.
This week, some of the audio and transcripts for the 911 calls regarding the incident have been released, further revealing how much the police department knew about the killing. In one of the recordings, a police dispatcher who was watching live video feeds from the scene called into police supervisors to warn them about the excessive force that they were witnessing.
In the call the dispatcher can be heard saying, “I don’t know, you can call me a snitch if you want to but we have the cameras up for (squad) 320’s call, and…I don’t know if they had to use force or not, but they got something out of the back of the squad, and all of them sat on this man, so I don’t know if they needed you or not, but they haven’t said anything to me yet..”
“Yeah, they haven’t said anything yet…just a takedown, which doesn’t count, but I’ll find out,” the supervisor responded.
“No problem, we don’t get to ever see it so when we see it we’re just like, well, that looks a little different, but…” the dispatcher said.
The supervisor then cut the dispatcher off and stopped the call, saying only, “Sounds good, bye.”
In a phone recording released this afternoon, a Minneapolis Police dispatcher watching a video feed of officers holding George Floyd down called a Sergeant to report it. The officers hadn't done so. (The knife reference is an unrelated call.)
779 people are talking about this

This call was moments after Floyd’s death, yet the department still chose to run with the “medical distress” narrative. It was completely dishonest and exactly the reason people are mad. This is not a bad apple at work here, this is a coordinated effort, denying facts, to paint a picture that favors a police narrative. It is wrong, it is dishonest, and it is the impetus behind the anger in the United States that is directed at police today.

Not Just Brutality—Cops Still Being Arrested for Trafficking, Raping, Exploiting Children

Frequent readers of the Free Thought Project know those police officers throughout the United States are arrested regularly for sex crimes. According to multiple studies, the majority of these crimes are against children. Proving the above point is the fact that cops are still getting arrested frequently for alleged sex crimes against children — despite many of them being in the streets attacking protesters.
Over the past few weeks, there has been no shortage of police officers getting caught on camera savagely abusing peaceful protesters. While a handful of the perpetrators were actually arrested, the overwhelming majority of offending officers were not. In the background, however, as protest headlines garner most of the attention, police officers are continuing to get arrested for sex abuse against children.
In the last week alone, there have been nearly a half dozen cops arrested for sex crimes against children.
One of those cops was Collier County deputy Rashaad A. Smith, 41, who was fired after his arrest Saturday night where he was hit with a whopping 100 counts of possession of child pornography.
According to WINK, Smith was arrested at his home late Saturday after a search warrant was served and evidence was seized. The CCSO arrest report states that the agency received “three cyber tips from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children from Microsoft about the transmission of child pornography on Skype.”
“The justice system will determine the outcome of this case but due to the heinous nature of these allegations, I ordered the immediate withdrawal of this person’s appointment as a member of the Collier County Sheriff’s Office,” Sheriff Kevin Rambosk said in a statement. “I know and appreciate that our community expects that when a deputy is charged with crimes like these, they are immediately fired from their position of authority and they do not continue to receive compensation from our tax dollars.”
Officer Nicholas Schafer, 36, with the Kansas City, Kansas, Police Department was also arrested in the last week for sex crimes against a child. Schafer was booked into Wyandotte County Jail last week and is being held on a $250,000 bond on charges of aggravated indecent liberties with a child.
After his arrest, Kansas City, Kansas, Police Chief Michael York released the following canned statement, claiming that their employees are held to the “highest standards.” Sure they are…
“The officer has been placed on un-paid administrative leave. As Chief of Police, I hold myself and my employees to the highest standards. All complaints against members of our Department are investigated thoroughly. Complaints about police conduct can be made by calling the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department at 911 or 913-596-3000; or directly to the Internal Affairs Hotline at 913-5736373.”
Before both of these two officers were arrested for preying on children, last Tuesday, Fontana Police officer Nicholas Stark, 28, was arrested for allegedly drugging and raping a child. Unlike the other two officers, Stark is on paid leave thanks to ridiculous police union rules.
Fontana Police Chief William Green said he is unable to fire Stark immediately due to California laws, and Stark is on paid leave.
“He is on paid leave and that is disgusting,” Green said in a statement. “However, I will endeavor to terminate him in the most expeditious manner possible.”
In March, a Toronto police officer was charged in connection with the sexual exploitation of a 16-year-old girl. On top of sexual exploitation charges, he had faced for the past three months, on Friday, Constable Peter Roberts, 49, was charged with sex trafficking the child.
Another cop in Pinellas County was also arrested for sex crimes last week. Though his crimes were not against children, we figured we should mention him because he used his authority as a cop to prey on his victims.
Rutherford Jean, age 29 of West Palm Beach, Florida was arrested on June 11, 2020, at approximately 11:45 a.m. for two counts of sexual battery, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office. He is accused of raping women in exchange for leniency — a crime by police that happens all too often.
Sadly these crimes against children show no signs of slowing as sexual misconduct among police officers is an unfortunately common crime. Multiple studies have shown that hundreds of cops a year are arrested or accused of sexual misconduct. In fact, the second-largest complaint against officers — second only to excessive force — is that of sexual abuse. More startling — as the above cases illustrate — is the fact that over half of the sexual abuse instances involve children.

Cops Thought They Got Away With Stealing $620K from Cannabis Farm, But Court Forced Them to Return It

Medical marijuana has been legal in California for over two decades, since 1996. Recreationally, California voters approved the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (Proposition 64), in November 2016, legalizing it for everyone else. Despite cannabis being legal in the state, police departments — addicted to kicking in doors and robbing peaceful pot growers and seizing their assets — continue to wage a war on this plant and many of the upstanding citizens who grow it.
With all the grim news lately in regards to police overreach, it is refreshing to see some of these departments get put in their place. The following story is just that.
In January, the Santa Barbara County sheriff’s office along with investigators from the California Department of Food and Agriculture Cal Cannabis and the Department of Fish and Wildlife served a search warrant at an entirely legal and licensed cannabis farm. After they raided entirely peaceful and legal cannabis growers, the sheriff’s office took to the internet to brag about the bust.
Through the investigation, detectives discover off-book (black market) marijuana sales associated with the farm. During the warrant service, detectives found a small volatile extrication lab along with extracted oil – both of which are outside of the grower’s license. Approximately 20 pounds of illegally stored cannabis was seized as well as over 1,000 pounds of cannabis crude.
It was actually 1,800 pounds of crude which had already been sold to another legitimate and legal company — not 1,000. After the cops robbed the place at gunpoint, stole all the cash, and seized the cannabis, the companies involved were forced to lay off nearly half their workforce. The amount of products stolen from them by police represented 65% of their entire marketable inventory.
On top of all the product and oil, these “hero” cops stole from the owner of Arroyo Verde Farms, Barry Brand, they also robbed him of $620,000 in cash. For the last five months, Brand and the company who was purchasing it from him, have been fighting the corrupt department in an attempt to get their property and money back. But the sheriff’s office argued in court that they have the right to permanently keep the assets because they are part of an “ongoing criminal investigation.” Seems legit.
The judge didn’t buy it though. As Marijuana Business Daily reports, Judge Thomas Anderle ruled on May 15 that the sheriff’s office had to return the seized property because “the record here shows that a California licensed cannabis operator committed no crime, much less intentionally committed a crime.”
The seized oil had already been sold to manufacturer Eagle Bay Enterprises, doing business as Procan Labs, and was being stored by Carpinteria, California-based Arroyo Verde.
John Armstrong, attorney for Procan Labs in Concord, California, said in a news release that the case was an instance of a “police mistake.”
Citing the ruling, Procan Labs reports that “criminal laws such as the state Controlled Substances Act do not apply to licensed commercial cannabis activities.” The court further found “there was no black market oil whatsoever on the premises,” and all substances had been clearly tagged.
In other words, the cops raided an entirely legal business and robbed them for their personal gain.
“For years, unwarranted legal lawsuits have plagued the cannabis industry,” the company said in a statement, noting they were happy about getting back the product owed to them but unhappy about the way parasitic police departments prey on the cannabis industry to pad their budgets.
Naturally, the police are defending their initial raid — albeit terribly — by claiming some “technical non-compliance issues” gave them the ability to steal nearly 3/4 of a million dollars and hundreds of thousands in the product.
“With millions of dollars at stake, licensed cannabis operators should not be at risk of losing their business because police mistake lawful cannabis operations for illegal black market activities,” argues John Armstrong of the Horwitz + Armstrong law firm, lead counsel in the case. “This decision shows that our courts will side with the cannabis industry when provided evidence of good faith efforts to comply with state regulations,” Armstrong says in the statement.
While they keep calling this raid a “mistake” it is entirely likely that it was no mistake at all. TFTP has reported on countless instances of police officers raiding legal operations, seizing their product and money — and even taking their children — simply because they can.

NYPD Cops Caught Pointing Guns at and Arresting Black Children for ‘Playing, High-Fiving’

 According to a report published on Monday by the New York Civilian Complaint Review Board, two black children were handcuffed by NYPD officers because they were running with sticks while on their way home from school. Police stopped the two boys, ages 8 and 14, frisked them, and then handcuffed them and took them to the police station even though they weren’t doing anything wrong. That was just one example — there are dozens more.
The aforementioned incident occurred back in March of 2018 but was not made public until after the case was recognized by the review board. The children were traumatized by the experience, especially the 8-year-old, who always dreamed of being a police officer someday, according to his mother.
This case is among more than 100 complaints that the review board has investigated that took place between January 2018 and June 2019, most of which involved male children or teens of color.
The review board found that of the 112 complaints that they reviewed, nearly 65% were cases where police were accused of using inappropriate force on young males of color. The complaints included young boys having guns pulled on them by police, getting handcuffed, arrested, or assaulted for offenses as simple as playing, running sitting on stoops, carrying backpacks or even high-fiving.
According to the report, “The CCRB is aware that the NYPD believes it is working hard to protect the youth of New York City. Many young people, however, especially young people of color, feel targeted and mistreated by members of the New York City Police Department. The NYPD should train all police officers on the differences between policing adults and policing youth. There is currently minimal to no information on how police officers are trained in dealing with young people.”
Fred Davie, the chairman of the CCRB, says that the concept of law enforcement needs a massive redesign.
We agree.
“Sadly, after years of witnessing news about police misconduct and possibly experiencing it themselves, even the youngest among us have an awareness of the tension that too often exists between the police and civilians,” Davie said.
The CCRB also conducted a poll of New Yorkers between the ages of 10-18 and found that just over half avoid police officers in their neighborhoods, and only 15% said that they have always felt safe calling the police or help. The sample size of this poll was extremely small, only gathering opinions from 200 people, but it seems to offer a fairly accurate representation of mainstream attitudes towards the police.
A spokesperson for the NYPD said that Commissioner Dermot Shea will start to make changes to how officers interact with young people.
“After careful review, we accept each of the CCRB’s thoughtful and constructive recommendations — some of which are already in the process of being implemented and all of which will strengthen our new Youth Strategy,” the spokesperson said, according to Pix11.
Along with many other politicians and law enforcement officials in the US, NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea has been forced to promise reform in the department in response to the massive protests that have swept across the country in recent weeks.
Whether or not these politicians and departments follow through with the promised reform will be an entirely different matter altogether.

Cops Attack, Kidnap Man at Protest as He’s Being Interviewed by Local News

Police violence against peaceful protests is so rampant in the United States right now that much of it is being caught on mainstream media networks, live and on air. In one utterly ridiculous show of force, a protester, who is reportedly a pillar of the community, was assaulted by the police, tackled and kidnapped, as he was giving an interview to WIVB 4 News. You cannot make this stuff up.
As the video below shows, the attack was captured from two angles. Miles Carter was giving an interview with a cameraman from WIVB when a swarm of riot cops started running toward the pair. His hands were in the air and he was doing nothing illegal.
“My name is Miles Carter. I live in the Town of Tonawanda. I don’t live in the City of Buffalo,” he said. And as he continued with “My mosque is over on Genesee Street,” a dozen cops threw him to the ground so hard his helmet flew over ten feet.
Then cops began setting off tear gas.
Exactly why Carter was arrested remains a mystery as there was no curfew when this happened and he appeared to be completely peaceful. WIVB called Buffalo police to ask why they attacked and kidnapped the man, but they received no response. TFTP also reached out on Friday and have not heard anything back.
The local chapter of Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), held a press conference on Friday to call out the injustice of Carter’s treatment. As the organization pointed out:
On Monday evening in Buffalo, N.Y., Miles Carter was speaking with a local television reporter during a peaceful demonstration. With his hands in the air and back to the police and without any notice, police in riot gear rushed forward, grabbed him and threw him to the ground. Police arrested Carter on two baseless charges. The City of Buffalo had not issued a curfew for Monday evening. Carter was released early Tuesday morning.
After the video of his arrest was put online, friends of Carter started a fundraiser on Lauchgood for him, which raised nearly four times the amount they were trying to obtain for his legal defense. The extra money is reportedly going to create an endowment for all unjustly arrested people.
Every dollar raised over 10,000 will go to (1) legal fees for eligible individuals in our community (2) social justice advocacy and (3) facilitating know your rights trainings for the inner city
According to CAIR, Carter has been a community advocate for years and has contributed to the City of Buffalo by helping to raise over $120,000 to build a state-of-the-art playground and dedicating time to assist in the build-out of a domestic violence shelter that serves the east side of Buffalo.
He is a father of 5, a black business owner, a native of Buffalo, a graduate of Medaille College and has served as a mosque liaison to the Buffalo Police Department C-District.
In a statement, CAIR-NY Litigation Director Ahmed Mohamed stated:
“Protesters have a fundamental right to protest against abusive police practices. It is unacceptable for law enforcement to respond to peaceful protests with aggressive tactics and excessive use of force.
“Miles Carter was conducting a media interview with his hands in the air and his back turned away from the police when he was viciously grabbed, slammed to the ground by the officers, and unlawfully arrested. Mr. Carter’s courage to speak out is indicative of his commitment to his community and justice.
“CAIR-NY stands in solidarity with Mr. Carter and protesters demanding that police stop using excessive force against unarmed Black community members.”
Protests are expected to continue in Buffalo after an extremely disturbing video was posted online showing cops assault a 75-year-old man who was trying to give them back a helmet they lost.

In Anambra, three people were killed as they clashed with the police.

  Over the weekend, the situation in the Aguleri village, which is located in the Anambra East Local Government Area of the state of Anambra...