DISCIPLINE AND PUNISH  11:48 am May 15, 2012

How Much Pain Can Cops Inflict On You? John Roberts To Decide This, Ugh

by Josh Fruhlinger

Dorkiest Wonkette pic ever? Probably!Hey, fun exercise: imagine nine people getting together to talk about tiny little gadgets that were invented specifically to cause agonizing pain, and figure out the parameters of who is allowed to use them on you, and in what context? Sounds awesome, right? Now, what if one of these nine people were, say, Antonin Scalia, and the arguments gave him the opportunity to use the phrase “useful pain technique,” probably while laughing uproariously? EVEN BETTER, right? This is happening, right now, as the Supreme Court considers the case of three cops who tased a seven-months-pregnant lady over a traffic ticket, while her horrified son watched!

Let’s let the New York Times explain how things went down in the Exciting Case of the Pregnant Seattle Lady Who Got Tased:

The case involves Malaika Brooks, who was seven months pregnant and driving her 11-year-old son to school in Seattle when she was pulled over for speeding. The police say she was going 32 miles per hour in a school zone; the speed limit was 20.

Ms. Brooks said she would accept a ticket but drew the line at signing it, which state law required at the time. Ms. Brooks thought, wrongly, that signing was an acknowledgment of guilt.

Refusing to sign was a crime, and the two officers on the scene summoned a sergeant, who instructed them to arrest Ms. Brooks. She would not get out of her car.

The situation plainly called for bold action, and Officer Juan M. Ornelas met the challenge by brandishing a Taser and asking Ms. Brooks if she knew what it was.

She did not, but she told Officer Ornelas what she did know. ‘I have to go to the bathroom,’ she said. ‘I am pregnant. I’m less than 60 days from having my baby.’

The three men assessed the situation and conferred. ‘Well, don’t do it in her stomach,’ one said. ‘Do it in her thigh.’

Officer Ornelas twisted Ms. Brooks’s arm behind her back. A colleague, Officer Donald M. Jones, applied the Taser to Ms. Brooks’s left thigh, causing her to cry out and honk the car’s horn. A half-minute later, Officer Jones applied the Taser again, now to Ms. Brooks’s left arm. He waited six seconds before pressing it into her neck.

OK, go have a little lie down for a minute, and then come back, because your Wonkette is going to try for a minute to not be a knee-jerk liberal about this business. Is it possible, even though it is not indicated in this little stage play that the Times lays out for us, that this pregnant lady was having a freak-out at the police officers and was being sweary and abusive? Sure! This happens all the time! Is it true that the cops were put in an awkward position because their state had this dumb law (since rescinded, apparently) under which they had to have the lady sign this piece of paper, and if she didn’t sign probably they’d be chewed out by their bosses? Absolutely!

So, if you take it as a given that the cops had to get the lady out of the car, then one of the statements from a judge on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals is also relevant: “There are only so many ways a person can be extracted from a vehicle against her will, and none of them is pretty … Fists, batons, chokeholds, tear gas and chemical spray all carry their own risks to suspects and officers alike.”

OK BUT HERE’S THE THING: If you, say, drag someone out of a car, and you cause pain in the process, though the pain is real, and maybe worse than what you’d get from tasering, it’s sort of incidental, right? Like, the action you’re taking is still fundamentally getting them out of the car. Just like if some crazy dude is charging you with a knife and you use your taser on him, your goal is to stop him from attacking you in the least lethal way possible. Both these things seem qualitatively different from applying a device specifically designed to cause pain to a person who isn’t threatening you in any way. The only point of applying pain is to get them to obey your commands. Isn’t there a word for inflicting pain on someone to extract compliance? There is! It’s called “torture!” And also “cruel and unusual!” Those are some other words that some people might use.

Also probably lots of people involved in making these decisions aren’t doing this careful “Well, will the taser inflict less pain than other techniques?” balancing act. Instead, they’re saying things like this!

Chief Judge Alex Kozinski dissented on the first point, saying Ms. Brooks had been ‘defiant’ and ‘deaf to reason’ and so had brought the incident upon herself.

As for the officers, he said: ‘They deserve our praise, not the opprobrium of being declared constitutional violators. The City of Seattle should award them commendations for grace under fire.’

FYI, the definition of “under fire” has now been broadened from “being shot at” to “being yelled at by some pregnant lady.” And also, we literally cannot emphasize enough that Alex Kozinski had a website full of cow porn that came to light while he was presiding over an obscenity trial.

Anyway, the 9th Circuit found that the cops used excessive force but couldn’t be sued because the law in 2004 when this all happened was, like, confusing. Not satisfied with this half-assed exoneration, the policemen appealed to the Supreme Court, who will now decide under what circumstances cops can tase you, and we’re just going to take a wild guess that they’ll decide 5 to 4 that the answer is “all of the circumstances, Katie.”

In case you are now worried and depressed, that lady had a child who came out healthy despite its in utero tasing. Oh, and also your Comics Curmudgeon’s wife once drove 15 miles an hour over the speed limit in a school zone but instead of having a confrontation with the cops we just got a speed camera photo in the mail and I showed it to her and said “stone cold busted!” and we had a good laugh and wrote a check for $40 and nobody got tased and maybe that’s a better way to handle this sort of thing. [NYT]

 
Related video

Hola wonkerados.

To improve site performance, we did a thing. It could be up to three minutes before your comment appears. DON'T KEEP RETRYING, OKAY?

Also, if you are a new commenter, your comment may never appear. This is probably because we hate you.

{ 174 comments }

nounverb911 May 15, 2012 at 11:50 am

The Seattle Police are one funny mob of incompetent idiots.

Lascauxcaveman May 15, 2012 at 12:07 pm

Hey, why should San Diego have all the fun?

True Seattle Cop Story:
My friend Rob, (6'3" skinny, pasty white boy) walking home to his apartment one night, gets stopped by a cop, grabbed, tossed to the ground, cuffed (a few nips on his shins and forearms by officer K-9 for good measure) tossed in the back of squad car, motored over to a 7-11 store, dragged in propped up in front the clerk.

Cop: "This the guy?"
Clerk: "What are you, an idiot? I told you, the guy was about 5'6" and hispanic."

Judith_Priest May 15, 2012 at 1:14 pm

And then there's LA. When there's REAL trouble, they stay away … unless there's a gunshot, in which case the news copters are there in seconds, and the cops are there in 10 or 20 minutes. Otherwise, including the case of my neighbors who were drunk, tweaking, screaming, "I'm-a KILL you!", and whacking each other with large boards torn from the fence, the cops show up 4 hours later and call you to tell you they "didn't hear or see anything."

One Sunday morning, as I was enjoying my coffee in the living room, a little Prokofiev on the speakers, you know … chillin' … some stranger tried to walk through my front door, screaming, "GABRIEL, GIMME MY FUCKING MONEY!!"
I ran over, screamed for my sleeping husband, slammed the door on this stranger's foot, shoved him out, locked up, and called the cops.

(Gabriel is one of the aforementioned neighbors in the Board Fights, of course.)

This guy kept beating on the door, screaming that he wanted his money. My husband came out and barked at him, and the guy retreated to the sidewalk in front of my house, pacing.

The cops arrived. I saw them talking to this guy out on the sidewalk, and then they come pounding on my door. I open it, and there's a Bitch Cop shouting at me, "Why don't you give this guy his money?"

I explained that I wasn't Gabriel. Gabriel lives two doors down. She replied, "Hey, he has YOUR address written on this piece of paper! The man did some work for you, and he wants his money!"

I explained again. She made threatening noises, had the cuffs in one hand, and produced a wrinkled scrap of paper with the other and shoved it in my face. The paper said "1998 Mystreet". I live at *1988* Mystreet. Above the porch where she was standing was a foot-high sign saying "1988".

She screamed, "SEE?"
I had to point out the difference in the numbers to her 3 times before she saw that 1988 and 1998 are different, all while she snarled about running me in for my "attitude". After 10 minutes she finally conceded that since the paper had "Gabriel" and Gabriel's address written on it, she might just possibly be in the wrong damned place.

Sigh …

I'm so glad to know that the LAPD enjoys working as a not-particularly-bright collection agency for Tweak Dealers. I'm also glad they really check addresses before they decide to fuck shit up.

Chichikovovich May 15, 2012 at 1:21 pm

You should have gone with Shostakovich instead.

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 1:30 pm

Symphony no. 8, perhaps?

Dashboard Buddha May 15, 2012 at 2:54 pm

That's fucking incredible. The situation could have gone wrong is so many ways I get a cold shiver.

OneDollarJuana May 15, 2012 at 12:48 pm

And yet they are still grumbling and resisting the results of the Federal probe into SPD bad behavior.

emmelemm May 15, 2012 at 1:47 pm

I disagree on "funny".

nounverb911 May 15, 2012 at 11:51 am

DWB?

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 11:58 am

Driving While Babbied?

Lascauxcaveman May 15, 2012 at 12:07 pm

DWBSM. Driving while being a soccer mom.

tcaalaw May 15, 2012 at 2:59 pm

Name is "Malaika Brooks"? Survey says, "Yes."

Barb May 15, 2012 at 11:51 am

The City of Seattle should award them commendations for grace under fire.

Sounds more like race under fire.

prommie May 15, 2012 at 11:53 am

There is this magic word, a cool piece of newspeak, its "tools." Its what law and order nazis call anything the cops want. Its a 'useful tool." "Okey dokey then," the courts say, its not torture, its not an unconstitutional infringement on rights, its a 'tool." Just like a wrench or a hammer or a rack or a thumbscrew or an iron maiden.

Tundra Grifter May 15, 2012 at 11:58 am

I was at a booksale and picked up a paperback about the Nazis. There was a chilling photo of a beautifully made set of thumbscrews. The channels for each thumb had precision machining to make them as painful as possible. The wing-nut screws looked so exact.

And there was a little plaque on the front with the proud name of the manufacturer.

Can you imagine coming home from work and telling your wife "Honey – you won't believe it! Today we got the Gestapo thumbscrew order!"

prommie May 15, 2012 at 12:14 pm

Or the Zyklon-B order. Has history recorded the name of the Bayer salesman who booked that order? Who had the agent orange account at DuPont?

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 1:04 pm

"The wing-nut screws looked so exact."

Perfect. Just perfect.

Tundra Grifter May 15, 2012 at 1:42 pm

tessiee:

Thank you! There's always a certain risk in being dead serious here on Wonkette – but, as Mr. Miyagi said, "Balance."

Also – "Wax on, wax off."

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 2:01 pm

Wonkette is not a place for Miyagi-esque balance. Very little wax on, but everyone wax off.

nounverb911 May 15, 2012 at 11:53 am

Did ex-chief Gill Kerlikowske ever find his missing gun?
Stupid man leaves gun in car, loses it.

chascates May 15, 2012 at 11:55 am

Scalia knows the value of pain:
"Blessed be pain. Loved be pain. Glorified be pain"
Josemarie Escriva, Founder, Opus Dei

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 12:02 pm

Hm. The Eulenspiegel Society uses that one, too…

Tundra Grifter May 15, 2012 at 11:55 am

As I read the infamous John Yoo Torture Memo, rape would not be considered torture – particularly if the people inflicting it used a little lube.

That's not my America.

prommie May 15, 2012 at 12:07 pm

Come on, whats so hard to understand, its not torture unless it causes organ failure.

What the fuck is Yoo doing at Stanford? Deliberately misreading a treaty to come up with a completely absurd and frankly illiterate interpretation is how you become a law professor now? the fucking fuck, ya know, I fucking practice fucking law honestly for fucking 25 years, and I can actually read a statute, and do you see me being given some nice comfy sinecure where I can pontificate to bunch of terrified kids and screw the good-looking ones all day? Fuck no. Fucking fuckety fuck. The fucking race is not fucking to the fucking swiftest, nor fucking riches to the fucking wise, thats for fucking sure. The next republican nazi prez will put him on the 9th Circuit, too. Fucking fucker.

Tundra Grifter May 15, 2012 at 12:20 pm

I'd respect you more if next time you didn't sugarcoat your comment.

V572 Is this him? May 15, 2012 at 12:44 pm

They didn't want Yoo's mind. They wanted his résumé: AAG for Torture Enablement.

glamourdammerung May 15, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Come on, whats so hard to understand, its not torture unless it causes organ failure.

Just pointing out that tasers have done that.

hagajim May 15, 2012 at 11:55 am

Yell at the cops and get your ass tazed, gassed or beat to hell. Seems like this nice lady just beat the Occupy movement into having the POOOOlice use ridiculous overkill in an effort to show who the fucking boss is.

calliecallie May 15, 2012 at 12:43 pm

Or strip-searched. Approved by the court already.

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 11:56 am

Tazed for not signing a ticket? Pussies

That's a waterboarding in Mississippi!

Tundra Grifter May 15, 2012 at 12:20 pm

So is signing a hot check.

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 12:27 pm

Unless you're a rich old white man who used to be Speaker of the House.

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 1:06 pm

Why would it not at all surprise me if that went through the officer's mind, too?
e.g., "Fuckin' Seattle! If we were in Mississippi, we'd be lynching this bitch by now!"

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 1:13 pm

No need to go that far. If they were in Oakland, they could've just gone for a nice, clean cold shooting.

Swampgas_Man May 15, 2012 at 1:52 pm

They'll think of that next time; dead people file no lawsuits.

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 2:13 pm

Their families, on the other hand…

ThankYouJeebus May 15, 2012 at 11:56 am

She should count herself lucky that they didn't strip search her afterwards.

(Strip searching under any circumstances was recently ruled legal by this same Supreme Court .)

SorosBot May 15, 2012 at 11:57 am

But those cops had to torture that lady with electric shocks; I mean she was driving slightly over the speed limit. Next she might just slow down at a stop sign instead of coming to a full stop, or keep out a library book past the due date!

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 11:59 am

Besides, the baby spasms were fun to watch.

Doktor StrangeZoom May 15, 2012 at 12:15 pm

This is simply the next logical application of the "broken windows" theory of policing.

Perhaps the "schmutzy windows" theory.

GhostBuggy May 15, 2012 at 3:09 pm

Look, she HAD TO SIGN THE PAPER, OK? IT'S VERY IMPORTANT THAT THE PAPER IS SIGNED. Do you know what happens if the paper isn't signed? Something awful, probably, like worse than a pregnant woman getting zapped by some fucking pigs.

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 11:58 am

FYI, the definition of “under fire” has now been broadened from “being shot at” to “being yelled at by some pregnant lady.”

In a Stand Your Ground state, it's just a sideways glance.

GuyClinch May 15, 2012 at 12:00 pm

When I lived in Florida, I shot a guy for giving me a funny look. Turned out he just had a lazy eye. Oh well, not my problem! Still, the folks at Supercutz were pretty pissed about the brouhaha.

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 12:04 pm

Them wall-eyes are creepy fuckers. Shoulda shot him, never can tell when he'll creep someone else out.

Lascauxcaveman May 15, 2012 at 12:26 pm

I shot a man in Reno, because he cut in front of me in the express check-out line.

He had MORE THAN 8 ITEMS, too.

Swampgas_Man May 15, 2012 at 1:53 pm

Jack Elam woulda shot back, by God.

MLHencken May 15, 2012 at 11:58 am

Sorry, can't find anything funny about this.

boobookitteh May 15, 2012 at 12:05 pm

Yeah. 3 cops actually 'conferred' on the best way to taze her. That hardly seems like she was an imminent threat.

Maybe they could have used their chit-chat time on thinking of a non-violent way to defuse the situation.

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 12:09 pm

Asking nicely might have worked.

FlownOver May 15, 2012 at 12:37 pm

If she had to go to the bathroom it isn't likely she was going to stay in the car very long, now, is it?

Coppers gotta cop.

Chill-A-Sketch May 15, 2012 at 11:58 am

Isn't the pain inflicted on us by Citizens United not enough?

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 11:59 am

Can't wait for Scalia to explain to us how this isn't "cruel and unusual punishment" because the ratfucking bastards do it all the fucking time.

Generation[redacted] May 15, 2012 at 12:28 pm

It's too bad Supreme Court justices aren't subject to the same level of police "protection" as the rest of us. You'd see this sort of thing stop right quick.

SayItWithWookies May 15, 2012 at 12:01 pm

This is what happens when you don't live your life in submission to the Constitution.

V572 Is this him? May 15, 2012 at 12:47 pm

With certain interpretive improvements from Mssrs Scalia, Roberts, Alito and Thomas, Esqs. It's what the founders wanted! They know!

ThundercatHo May 15, 2012 at 12:01 pm

Nice work, assholes. I was really hoping the happy ending was that she sued them all eight ways til Tuesday and now they all work at the car wash.

Wonderthing May 15, 2012 at 12:01 pm

$40.00? Dang. Where did you live at the time, Mayberry? It was $240.00 for my stunned mug looking like a red light running gangster beeyotch. In LA, baybay!

Lascauxcaveman May 15, 2012 at 12:29 pm

Yeah, that sounds kinda low. My wife got camera-ticketed for 32 in a school zone, and even that was $114.

jfruh May 15, 2012 at 3:47 pm

It was in Baltimore City! Shhh, you guys, don't tell that they can charge more.

DaRooster May 15, 2012 at 12:02 pm

So… you guys couldn't get a pregnant lady out of a car without a taser?

You guys are a bunch of fucking snatches.

An_Outhouse May 15, 2012 at 12:06 pm

I would have showed her a big bowel of chocolate ice cream.

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 12:10 pm

… and pickles.

widestanceromance May 15, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Or an ultrasound.

natoslug May 15, 2012 at 1:02 pm

Ew. I know it's a typo, but the imagery of a big bowel, or what one might call a large intestine, full of chocolate ice cream, is not a happy morning image. TOO SOON! (also, too). That's gotta be the worst dessert idea ever.

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 1:20 pm

Careful now. You might give Heston Blumenthal a new recipe idea: tripe ice-cream.

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 1:08 pm

"a big bowel of chocolate ice cream"

Oh, God, please let that be a typo!
ESPECIALLY from someone whose avatar is "Cooking with Pooh", let that be a typo!

Trannysurprise May 15, 2012 at 12:02 pm

They should have tased the fetus too, just to teach the little fucker that you obey cops in our new police state.

MIND MY AUTHORITIEEEEEEEE!!!1!!!

Doktor StrangeZoom May 15, 2012 at 12:02 pm

This tased baby….does it at least have super-powers?

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 12:05 pm

It makes metal objects move.

Jus_Wonderin May 15, 2012 at 12:02 pm

Dear Penthouse Forum??????????

SnarkoMarx May 15, 2012 at 12:03 pm

I'm just pretty much numb now. By the way, whenever I look at the police I see the cops from the old Duke Nukem game. Anyone else experiencing this phenomenon?

Jus_Wonderin May 15, 2012 at 12:12 pm

I am attempting to comment here and the admin keeps deleting my awesomeness.

Jus_Wonderin May 15, 2012 at 12:13 pm

Needz moar Wolf 3D dogs!!!

An_Outhouse May 15, 2012 at 12:05 pm

Two words. ORGAN FAILURE. Oozing internal organs or GTFO.

V572 Is this him? May 15, 2012 at 12:49 pm

If you see the one of the cops climbing a utility pole with an extra-long set of jumper cables, it's time to do what they want.

DaRooster May 15, 2012 at 12:05 pm

Never shake tase a baby!!

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 12:07 pm

Dingoes tased my baby!

Doktor StrangeZoom May 15, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Heh… at the birthin' center where Kid Zoom was borned, they had a poster in the restroom which I read backwards in the mirror. Thought it said "Never EVER Shave a Baby!"

Which is still pretty good advice, if you ask me.

Chichikovovich May 15, 2012 at 12:17 pm

Good advice??? Who wants a hairy baby?

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 12:22 pm

Roumanians?

Lucidamente1 May 15, 2012 at 12:06 pm

Yeah, but this all happened in evil parallel universe where Spock has a beard and uses an agonizer, didn't it?

Jus_Wonderin May 15, 2012 at 12:14 pm

But, Barbara Luna…va, va, va, voom!!!

SorosBot May 15, 2012 at 12:20 pm

It's also the universe where Major Kira's counterpart was bisexual and wore a skintight leather out; mrow!

LetUsBray May 15, 2012 at 12:34 pm

When did we become the evil parallel universe? It fucking sucks.

Doktor StrangeZoom May 15, 2012 at 12:45 pm

About the same time that George W. got Congress to give him use of the Tantalus Field

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 1:10 pm

"evil parallel universe where Spock has a beard"

Fry: If you're not evil parallel Bender, what's with the goatee and the scarf?
Bender: Jeez, get a fashion sense!

DemmeFatale May 15, 2012 at 2:18 pm

OK, all you nerds that knew this was "Evil Spock" raise your hands!

(Looks around meekly, and raises hand.)

Exhausted66 May 15, 2012 at 12:06 pm

Malaika = ‘defiant’ and ‘deaf to reason’

I think you're ignoring the evidence here.

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Does the record reflect whether at any time she became uppity?

Chichikovovich May 15, 2012 at 12:18 pm

If only she had been a bit more articulate, none of this would have happened.

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 1:11 pm

Now she'll *never* get her motherfuckin' iced tea.

randcoolcatdaddy May 15, 2012 at 12:06 pm

It only really counts as pain when Drudge Sirens are involved.

MissTaken May 15, 2012 at 12:07 pm

I'm really gonna think twice the next time I remove the label from a mattress.

Doktor StrangeZoom May 15, 2012 at 12:07 pm

Ultimately, the real victim here is Sarah Palin, and I think it's only fair to call on President Obama to resign.

Chet Kincaid May 15, 2012 at 12:18 pm

Officially Cashed.™

Doktor StrangeZoom May 15, 2012 at 12:33 pm

I'm not sure… that dead horse seemed to flinch a bit just now. I'm gonna try the taser.

natoslug May 15, 2012 at 1:07 pm

Are you my son? He's 12 and loves driving a point into the ground as much as McCain loves crashing planes.

MLHencken May 15, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Almost as good as: "he burns up the scene like David Koresh."

MosesInvests May 16, 2012 at 12:08 am

Sounds like my ex.

Chet Kincaid May 15, 2012 at 1:25 pm

Well-played, Sir!

GhostBuggy May 15, 2012 at 3:13 pm

Don't tell Judge Kozinski, it'll get him excited.

prommie May 15, 2012 at 12:07 pm

She didn't follow her duty of submission to the Constitution, I guess.

Mahousu May 15, 2012 at 12:08 pm

Michael F. Williams, a lawyer at Kirkland & Ellis, which represents Ms. Brooks, said the criminal justice system would endure even if the police were barred from delivering thousands of volts of electricity into the body of a pregnant woman who refused to sign a piece of paper.

Maybe, but why take a chance? And how are the officers supposed to know if she is really pregnant? Transvaginal ultrasound?

5 bucks says someone actually makes that last argument in court.

DaRooster May 15, 2012 at 12:09 pm

"Refusing to sign was a crime…"

Really? So when the little camera catches you do you also get a ticket for not signing the ticket?
Shoulda just gave her the fucking ticket and been done… dip-fucks.

Lascauxcaveman May 15, 2012 at 12:39 pm

Seriously, you'd think cops would have enough experience dealing with cranks and assholes (some of them actually dangerous) on a daily basis to have the sense not to go medieval on some really preggers lady. Even if she is black and mouthy.

Fucking idiot sergeant that told them "WTF, just taze the bitch" should be given a few good jolts himself.

HistoriCat May 15, 2012 at 2:10 pm
Fare la Volpe May 15, 2012 at 12:09 pm

As long as you zap her in the arm and not the belly, the baby just comes out medium instead of well done.

chicken_thief May 15, 2012 at 12:16 pm

The 6 second pause is critical too. Allows sufficient time to prevent the internal temp from getting too high and drying out the meat.

SoBeach May 15, 2012 at 12:09 pm

After the Court's recent strip search ruling why are they wasting taxpayer money listening to this case? Don't they have some kind of rubber stamp they can use?

Mumbletypeg May 15, 2012 at 12:10 pm

I would like to see how the Oakland's notorious effeminazi Elmo-bedecked traffic violator would have responded to a taser threat from "Fat Tits!"

Blueb4sunrise May 15, 2012 at 12:11 pm

She said, "I have to go to the bathroom." presumably she would get out of the car to do this. Even if not true at that moment, if would be true eventually.

bikerlaureate May 15, 2012 at 5:32 pm

But then they wouldn't have been able to display such grace under fire (and use their toy which was initially marketed, lest we forget, only as an alternative to lethal force).

Chet Kincaid May 15, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Bring back Cartoon Violence!

FakaktaSouth May 15, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Oh for fuck's sake – Dildos are illegal in Alabama, Tasers to Terrorizes Preggos are now going to be mandated by the state. I think this is so backwards. Give the cops big old dildos. It will be so much easier to convince people to do what you say.

GhostBuggy May 15, 2012 at 3:18 pm

You can do what they say all you want, they're still going to use those dildos.

BigSkullF*ckingDog May 15, 2012 at 12:13 pm

Malaika is a blah name. She's lucky she didn't get shot.

mavenmaven May 15, 2012 at 12:14 pm

Its ok to taze pregnant women multiple times for no reason, if they are African-American. Why they didn't just shoot her is still a mystery to some. .

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 12:26 pm

Because the babby might have been white. They didn't have a transvaginal ultrasound to check. Why does Obama allow our police officers to go out without the latest advances in technology?

RedneckMuslin May 15, 2012 at 12:14 pm

It's not pain if you're inflicting it on somebody else.

DaRooster May 15, 2012 at 1:56 pm

"What taser? I didn't feel a thing."

weejee May 15, 2012 at 12:16 pm

May Wagner-loving Antonin enjoy eternity stamping out flaming bags of poo while listening to the worst heavy metal band evah.

Chichikovovich May 15, 2012 at 12:27 pm

That has it's appeal, fershur. But me, I'm thinking opera-lover Scalia should be treated to 24/7 rotation of perhaps the most difficult soprano Aria as sung by history's worst soprano: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6h4f77T-LoM

[Couldn't find Florence Foster Jenkins doing any Wagner, but I bet she would do a memorable Senta from The Flying Dutchman.]

[Edit: Just found (not online, only a reference, alas) that she recorded a version of Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde. That will be Scalia's soundtrack for all eternity. ]

SoBeach May 15, 2012 at 12:42 pm

That link is AWESOME! How is it I've never heard of her?

ManchuCandidate May 15, 2012 at 12:16 pm

I miss the days of Roscoe P Coultrane and Sheriff Lobo.

chicken_thief May 15, 2012 at 12:17 pm

Why didn't they just coldcock the bitch and use the jaws of life to extract her? Jeez…

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Or put up a phony shoe store with a big "SALE" sign in the window????

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 1:40 pm

Haw, now I'm thinking of the scene in one of the "Shrek" movies where the bad guys are over-running the town, and one of the good guys tells another good guy, "We can deal with this, but we need another couple of minutes. Can you just distract them for a little while?". Then we see the bad guys running down the street, stop short, and then all run into a store. Then we see that the sign on the store has been altered with handwriting to read: "YE OLDE HOOTERS".

BornInATrailer May 15, 2012 at 12:24 pm

Almost a miscarriage of justice.

actor212 May 15, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Do there, see I did.

BerkeleyBear May 15, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Kozinski's a pompous ass whose been out to drive jurisprudence to the right as long as he's been breathing. Even Alito and Scalia tell him to chill the fuck out from time to time.

Although Scalia won't give two shits about this woman – since a non-lethal tasering wouldn't be both cruel and unusual by 18th fucking century standards, it is all good.

Oh, and the 9th got it right (as a matter of precedent) in saying they can't be sued personally because they didn't violate a clearly established policy. This is one of the fucked up corners of civil rights law and immunity – government employees get one free outrage. I had a case involving these types of issues and my boss, incredulous, would ask if it meant the cops could get away with murder. My response was that as a matter of money damages, they'd probably get one pass. They could still go to jail, and the next death would lead to a sweet cash payout, but the very first fuckup would not result in them losing all their money, no matter how seemingly deserved. Of course, we are decades and hundreds of police killings past that point, so it seemed like an academic discussion at the time. But if this case is reversed, that means the next taser based outrage will be free from civil damages, too.

Doktor StrangeZoom May 15, 2012 at 12:36 pm

As a temporary county employee (for at least another couple weeks) I will file this information away. Knowledge is Power!

(If knowledge is power, and as Kissinger said, power is the ultimate aphrodesiac, then howcome trivia champs don't get laid more?)

Lascauxcaveman May 15, 2012 at 12:44 pm

Trivia ≠ Knowledge.

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 12:38 pm

It doesn't matter if the institutional policy is unclear if the constitutional violation is clear.

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 1:13 pm

Constitution?
Pfffft!
That's for America.

pdiddycornchips May 15, 2012 at 1:53 pm

Let's see, one the one hand, you have the police and on the other you have a woman who didn't do what she was ordered to do. Which side do you think this court will choose? Keep in mind this is the same court that recently decided to overturn a civil judgement awarded to a man who was on death row in Louisiana. Seems the prosecutors in NOLA decided to withhold certain evidence that effectively proved this man couldn't have committed the crime. They continued to withhold that evidence through several appeal hearings. Several attorney's inside the DA's office were aware of this misconduct. The SCOTUS ruled that the plaintiff (a Mr. Thompson) had not proven a pattern of misconduct and therefore was not entitled to any damages. Now, it's one thing to understand the law but it's not the law we're talking about, it's the opinions of a half dozen bitter rightwing nutjobs that matters.

Baconzgood May 15, 2012 at 12:26 pm

Tase Me bro?

sati_demise May 15, 2012 at 12:28 pm

The city of Seattle begs cops not to file this case but they do anyway?

Defiant and deaf to reason.

I hope the Supremes think so too.

widestanceromance May 15, 2012 at 12:29 pm

Pain is freedom, my friends.

bikerlaureate May 15, 2012 at 5:35 pm

Submission is liberty.

Chichikovovich May 15, 2012 at 12:30 pm

I think the Court will find against the officers, personally.

Specifically, they will find that the officers violated the civil rights of the fetus. This decision will then be the foothold for overruling Roe v. Wade.

niblick77 May 15, 2012 at 12:33 pm

They should have just called a tow truck and towed her car to a police garage with her still in the car. No harm, no foul. And, they could then even charge her for the tow.

littlebigdaddy May 15, 2012 at 12:37 pm

Bald French philosopher ref ftw!

Doktor StrangeZoom May 15, 2012 at 12:42 pm

The Panopticon sees what you did there.

LetUsBray May 15, 2012 at 12:38 pm

The silence from the fetuses über alles crowd is remarkably deafening at this moment.

BaldarTFlagass May 15, 2012 at 12:40 pm

If you obey all the rules, then you have nothing to worry about.

BigSkullF*ckingDog May 15, 2012 at 12:41 pm

How have they not invented the transvaginal taser yet?

Steverino247 May 15, 2012 at 12:45 pm

Most tickets have the statement about signing not being an admission of guilt right next to where you sign. I don't know about this particular jurisdiction, but that resolves that problem.

Also, don't be so fast to violate your own Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination by sending in your checks on the camera tickets, folks. If there's no command to appear, there's likely no need to respond. A friend got one of those for a red light violation. At the bottom someplace is the statement: DO NOT CALL THE COURT. I thought that was a little strange. If there is no statement about what happens if you don't respond or a deadline to respond or a command to appear, then you're being asked to identify the driver and incriminate that person. Or so it would appear.

Your mileage may vary and this is not meant to be taken as legal advice, but it's been three months for my friend and no follow up or consequence so far. The video is no longer accessible on the website, either, so that implies the "evidence" went away, too.

GortRay May 15, 2012 at 12:51 pm

I've known many policehumans over the years and nearly all of them are sociopaths. They really do have a fondness for exerting physical power over the citizens they are "protecting and serving." Also, cheating on wives and girlfriends always.

Chichikovovich May 15, 2012 at 1:17 pm

I grew up in a family of police officers – my grandfather, all of my father's brothers, several cousins. All of them are of the view that the use of force when ingenuity, persuasion or patience could have sufficed is a failure and a sign of a substandard officer.

Though it's possible that the culture of Canadian police is different, I don't have enough experience with US police to say.

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 1:25 pm

I'd say the evidence suggests the prevailing opinion amongst officers of urban police departments in the US is that your relatives have it backwards.

pdiddycornchips May 15, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Having spent some time in the addiction treatment business, I have seen a fair number of peace officers and let's just say, most chose their careers for reasons other than wanting to help the community. Most of them are overcompensating for some slight or injustice that emasculated them way back when. They are going to spend the rest of their lives swinging their dicks around. These men aren't all monsters but left to their own devices, or better yet, given a green light to error on the side of violence, well, the results ain't going to be pretty.

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 12:59 pm

Part 1:

"three cops who tased a seven-months-pregnant lady over a traffic ticket"

*ahem*
*steps up to lectern*
There's a concept that I would like to introduce, and now is a good time. It's called "NEVER WHEN YOU ASK!"
It comes from the original movie "Swept Away" (not the Madonna version). A man and a woman are cast away on a deserted island, and of course, they fall in love. The woman asks the man to "sodomize" her. The man smacks her across the face and yells, "BITCH! NEVER WHEN YOU ASK!!"

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 12:59 pm

Part 2:

If Ms. Brooks had been pregnant and wanted an abortion, or drank a beer on a hot day, or drank a cup of coffee on a cold day, or done much of anything, she would have been history's greatest monster, because WHAT ABOUT THE PRECIOUS BABBIES FOR JEEBUS?? and everyone agrees, because supporting the fetuses is like supporting the troops (only 18 years earlier), and THE ABSOLUTE WORST THING ANYBODY CAN DO is look cross-eyed at a fetus. But apparently, now we find out that only *women* who don't join in the fetus worship are Satan, and it's OK for a man in a position of authority to do pretty much whatever to the precious fetus and its incubator, because NEVER WHEN YOU ASK!

And by the way, before I leave the lectern? Can I just say? I really, really hate having to split up my comments.

Chichikovovich May 15, 2012 at 1:06 pm

A Test:

Part 1:

"three cops who tased a seven-months-pregnant lady over a traffic ticket"

*ahem*
*steps up to lectern*
There's a concept that I would like to introduce, and now is a good time. It's called "NEVER WHEN YOU ASK!"
It comes from the original movie "Swept Away" (not the Madonna version). A man and a woman are cast away on a deserted island, and of course, they fall in love. The woman asks the man to "sodomize" her. The man smacks her across the face and yells, "BITCH! NEVER WHEN YOU ASK!!"

Part 2:

If Ms. Brooks had been pregnant and wanted an abortion, or drank a beer on a hot day, or drank a cup of coffee on a cold day, or done much of anything, she would have been history's greatest monster, because WHAT ABOUT THE PRECIOUS BABBIES FOR JEEBUS?? and everyone agrees, because supporting the fetuses is like supporting the troops (only 18 years earlier), and THE ABSOLUTE WORST THING ANYBODY CAN DO is look cross-eyed at a fetus. But apparently, now we find out that only *women* who don't join in the fetus worship are Satan, and it's OK for a man in a position of authority to do pretty much whatever to the precious fetus and its incubator, because NEVER WHEN YOU ASK!

And by the way, before I leave the lectern? Can I just say? I really, really hate having to split up my comments.

Chichikovovich May 15, 2012 at 1:25 pm

Hmmm…. tessie, you are obviously failing to eat your vegetables or something.

(More seriously – try Google Chrome – that's what I use for posting, and maybe that's the difference.)

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Using Firefox, I don't recall ever encountering a length limit on comments.

Lascauxcaveman May 15, 2012 at 3:45 pm

Also a test

(Don't bother reading this unless you are trying to memorize Hamlet's Soliliquy)

HAMLET

A monologue from the play by William Shakespeare

HAMLET: To be, or not to be–that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles
And by opposing end them. To die, to sleep–
No more–and by a sleep to say we end
The heartache, and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to. 'Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep–
To sleep–perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub,
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause. There's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life.
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
Th' oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely
The pangs of despised love, the law's delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That patient merit of th' unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? Who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscovered country, from whose bourn
No traveller returns, puzzles the will,
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all,
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought,
And enterprise of great pitch and moment
With this regard their currents turn awry
And lose the name of action. — Soft you now,
The fair Ophelia! — Nymph, in thy orisons
Be all my sins remembered.

HAMLET

A monologue from the play by William Shakespeare

HAMLET: To be, or not to be–that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles
And by opposing end them. To die, to sleep–
No more–and by a sleep to say we end
The heartache, and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to. 'Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep–
To sleep–perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub,
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause. There's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life.
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
Th' oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely
The pangs of despised love, the law's delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That patient merit of th' unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? Who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscovered country, from whose bourn
No traveller returns, puzzles the will,
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all,
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought,
And enterprise of great pitch and moment
With this regard their currents turn awry
And lose the name of action. — Soft you now,
The fair Ophelia! — Nymph, in thy orisons
Be all my sins remembered.

HAMLET

A monologue from the play by William Shakespeare

HAMLET: To be, or not to be–that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles
And by opposing end them. To die, to sleep–
No more–and by a sleep to say we end
The heartache, and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to. 'Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep–
To sleep–perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub,
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause. There's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life.
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
Th' oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely
The pangs of despised love, the law's delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That patient merit of th' unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? Who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscovered country, from whose bourn
No traveller returns, puzzles the will,
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all,
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought,
And enterprise of great pitch and moment
With this regard their currents turn awry
And lose the name of action. — Soft you now,
The fair Ophelia! — Nymph, in thy orisons
Be all my sins remembered.

HistoriCat May 15, 2012 at 2:17 pm

(raises hand)

But what if one of the cops is a woman?

tessiee May 15, 2012 at 1:02 pm

"Chief Judge Alex Kozinski dissented on the first point, saying Ms. Brooks had been ‘defiant’ and ‘deaf to reason’"

And "uppity", also too.

Tommy1733 May 15, 2012 at 1:02 pm

I wonder what that pregnant ladie's bill for the Tasing was?

DerrickWildcat May 15, 2012 at 1:10 pm

I would say 7 kilojoules of pain.

Wile E. Quixote May 15, 2012 at 1:24 pm

Hey, stop hatin on the Seattle Police Department. How many major urban police departments have a free assault rifle giveaway program complete with ammunition?

lamb_cannon May 15, 2012 at 1:35 pm

Josh, we have to stop meeting like this

pdiddycornchips May 15, 2012 at 1:36 pm

If we're going to create a feudal system of serfs and overlords, a violence-prone police force is going to be necessary. Remember when we had rights and could seek redress in the federal courts? It's seems a long time ago. The NAACP was founded to fight discrimination through legal action, primarily in the federal courts. It actually worked, at least in conjunction with Dr. King's non-violent civil actions. Today, the Roberts court wouldn't even take a case like Brown vs The Board of Ed. The court has jumped the shark. They see everything through their red/blue prism and they know exactly which side they're on. Individuals have no place in modern-day jurisprudence.

Wile E. Quixote May 15, 2012 at 1:41 pm

There's also this blast from the SPD's past. Back in 2001 a kid who's father had been an SPD officer and who was killed in the line of duty stole an SPD police car and went driving around Seattle in it. The cops were alerted to the theft and since the car had weapons in it were on a state of high alert. One group of cops saw an SPD car that they thought was the car that had been stolen and rammed it, except, ooops, it wasn't the car they were looking for. The officer in the car that was rammed assumed that he was being rammed by the stolen police car. The cops then got out and exchanged gunfire with each other and fired off 40 or so rounds up on Capitol Hill in Seattle. Fortunately the officers were lousy shots and didn't hit each other and even more fortunately no innocent bystanders were killed. When the incident was investigated the police realized that this kid had stolen police vehicles twice before.

This was back in 2001 which was the year that the Seattle Police Department basically sat on their asses during a riot at the city's Mardi Gras celebration and let a young man get kille d by a group of thugs. This of course was two years after the 1999 WTO riots where the police sat on their asses and did nothing while the black bloc dipshits ran riot and then, when things got out of control, waded in and beat the shit out of the peaceful protestors. The SPD is fucking useless, unfortunately, despite their utter worthlessness they have a strong union and its virtually impossible to get rid of an SPD officer, regardless of how incompetent he or she may be.

owhatever May 15, 2012 at 1:46 pm

This morning's Wonkette news is making me ill. Do the Seattle cops drive around in clown cars?

LilithInEden2 May 15, 2012 at 2:24 pm

Maybe the lawyer should ask Roberts if the fetus can sue if they are being tazed in utero? His side thinks a fetus has more rights than pregnant ladies.

Isyaignert May 15, 2012 at 2:41 pm

It figures the asshole judge is a Reagan appointee who was busted with a sicko porn collection while presiding over an obscenety case.

Cops these days are either psycho dicks from hell or fukkin' pussies who are scared of their own shadow and will shoot to kill anyone who looks at them funny.

They really, really need to do a better job at hiring non-fukked-up people in the first place and then training them to do their job without becoming criminals themselves.

Dashboard Buddha May 15, 2012 at 2:47 pm

She's lucky she wasn't pulled over by this dude.

He just stoned kicked a pregnant chick in the stomach and his superiors gave him high-fives.

io9k9s May 15, 2012 at 7:33 pm

Your house sounds like a nice place to live.

Obstreperous May 16, 2012 at 12:35 am

So who is this Judge Kozinski when he's at home? A trusty at Dachau?

ttommyunger May 16, 2012 at 6:56 am

The lack of physical fitness in today's crop of cops is rampant. Mid-size, small and rural departments have foregone physical fitness requirements in lieu of "Physical Agility" Tests. The sad fact is, most of today's cops simply lack the strength and skills to physically control an arrestee; ergo the mace and tase phenomenon, and the all-to-often use of deadly force (shooting).

Judith_Priest May 15, 2012 at 2:31 pm

Yes, it was Alexander Nevsky that drove the guy crazy, clearly. Ponderous. Brooding. Snapped his mind.

And I prefer Shostakovich's 5th.

sullivanst May 15, 2012 at 2:54 pm

That's very good too, but it doesn't have any kind of apropos subtitle.

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: