Monday, January 09, 2006
According to the medical examiner, a person who has to go through decades of education before they are allowed to hold that position, ruled that the death of Michael Clark was the result of sickle cell anemia that was exacerbated by Clark's use of PCP and cocaine. All of this was reported by KEYE news and The Austin Chronicle.
However, according to Clark's mom this a coverup by the Austin Police Department because "he didn't have no sickle cell." Yes, you who are barely able to string together an intelligent sentence, know more than the medical examiner. Forgive me for being skeptical about your prognosis.
The facts are that Michael Clark was high. He didn't follow legally issued orders from the police to submit to arrest. He bit one officer and injured another. It took nine officers on scene to subdue Clark. The officers had to use Tasers to do this. Tasers work.
Had Clark not been high on PCP and Cocaine at the time of his arrest, he may not have been as aggressive and resistant towards the police officers. He also, probably, would not have been in an argument with the woman that required the police to be called out.
The major complaint from some groups like the Texas ACLU is that most of the people "who died while or after Austin police officers used force on them were minorities". 13 out of 14 according to the above site. However, this data is from 1998. Austin P.D. hasn't had the Taser since 1998. That is a recent addition to the equipment carried by A.P.D. officers. APD acquired the Tasers sometime before 2004, because in Mach of 2004, according to an article, they acquired 730 X26 model Tasers. So, this tells us that not all of the 13 minority death after police use of force were the result of Taser use. The score: Bastardisms 1 Texas ACLU 0. Secondly, anyone who has lloked at criminal justice statistics for America in the past 3 decades or so has seen that minorities, particularly Blacks, are represented more than Whites. That means that more of the deaths are going to come from minorities because it s more likey that that a minority will be in the criminal justice system. Update: Bastardisms 2 Texas ACLU 0.
The Texas ACLU blog goes on to quote an Austin American Statesman article that printed the following exceprt from the A.P.D. Taser use protocol:
According to the department's policy, officers are allowed to use Tasers to control a dangerous or violent person when deadly force doesn't appear to be necessary, if attempts to subdue someone by other tactics haven't worked or if it is unsafe for officers to approach the person.The author of the article then goes on to assert that "Tasers aren't toys, and they're more dangerous than an officer's nightstick (when both are used according to training)." Of course I don't have the reserch study where the author gathered this data (mainly because they didn't cite a source) but I do know that the Taser rarely, if at all, produces lasting, long-term damage to the recipient, like a nightstick would. Ex: bruises, contusions, cranial damage, broken bones, trachial damage, etc. if used in various ways. If the author is suggesting that police officers physically abuse the violent suspects with their nightsticks rather than using a Taser, then by all means let them step up and recieve the first beating. Final Score: Bastardisms 3 Texas ACLU 0.
Only one officer is allowed to use a Taser on a person unless it is obvious that it did not work, according to the policy. Officers also must warn a person that they are going to use a Taser, unless the warning would jeopardize the officers.
I, personally, if given the choice would prefer the Taser. But, then again, I don't forsee myself ever needing to make that choice. I have a simple plan that will ensure that you never have to have the Taser used on you: Don't break the Law!!
Posted byJ. R. Guinness at 10:04 PM