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Paraplegic Claims Cops Whaled on Him
Courthouse News ^ | July 26, 2012 | JACK BOUBOUSHIAN

Posted on 07/30/2012 11:45:25 AM PDT by Altariel

CHICAGO (CN) - A paraplegic man claims in court that two police officers in suburban Harvey threw him to the ground and pepper-sprayed him because he used his cell phone to videotape the officers searching a car. Marc Miller sued the City of Harvey, former police Officer Shane Gordan, and Officer Simpkins in Federal Court. Miller says he "was and is paralyzed from the chest down with no or limited use of his body other than his head, neck, arms, and hands as a result of being shot in the year 1991." Miller claims he was sitting in his wheelchair on a public sidewalk in Harvey in August 2010 when he "observed defendant Gordan, then a Harvey police sergeant, conduct a search of a civilian vehicle he ha[d] stopped." "Plaintiff believed the search of this civilian vehicle was being conducted in a very aggressive manner, so he took out his cell phone and attempted to videotape the interaction on his cell phone while remaining on the sidewalk 30 or more feet from where defendant Gordan was conducting the vehicle search," Miller says. When Gordan saw him, he demanded that Miller give him the cell phone, Miller says. "When plaintiff verbally responded in the negative to this request, defendant Gordan grabbed plaintiff by the hair, and physically removed plaintiff from his wheelchair, bringing plaintiff to the ground. "Shortly thereafter, defendant Simpkins approached plaintiff as he was on the ground, and sprayed plaintiff in the face and eyes with oleoresin capsicum, more commonly known as 'pepper spray.'" Then, Miller claims, "Gordan and/or Simpkins forcefully pushed plaintiff's head in the ground while one or both of them had their knees in plaintiff's back." He says, "Gordan and Simpkins did not have a reasonable basis for using the amounts of force used against the plaintiff." He seeks punitive damages for excessive force. He is represented by Neil Toppel of Chicago.


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: donutwatch; paraplegic

1 posted on 07/30/2012 11:45:35 AM PDT by Altariel
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To: Altariel

I’ve known more than a few crippled people who needed their butts kicked.


2 posted on 07/30/2012 11:48:05 AM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: Altariel

Take the judgement money out of the policeman’s retirement funds. Don’t charge the citizens.


3 posted on 07/30/2012 11:51:11 AM PDT by Zuben Elgenubi
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To: Altariel

The Chicago Cops were demonstrating “Real Chicago values”!


4 posted on 07/30/2012 11:52:13 AM PDT by texson66 (In the words of Kent Brockman, "As for myself, I welcome our new commie overlords...")
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To: Altariel

Whaled? So the cops shot him with a harpoon?


5 posted on 07/30/2012 11:52:39 AM PDT by paddles ("The more corrupt the state, the more it legislates." Tacitus)
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To: cripplecreek
I’ve known more than a few crippled people who needed their butts kicked.

For taping cops?

6 posted on 07/30/2012 11:53:24 AM PDT by tpmintx (Problem: The people who work for a living are outnumbered by those who VOTE for a living.)
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To: Altariel
Let's see, pull Miller's hair, drag him from his wheelchair, smack his head into the ground, pepper spray him and kneel on his back or just get a pair of wheel chocks to immobilize him. Good thing Miller didn't have a dog with him or it would have had to have been shot.
7 posted on 07/30/2012 11:53:48 AM PDT by KarlInOhio (Recycled Olympic tagline Shut up, Bob Costas. Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!)
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To: tpmintx

You got proof that’s why or are you just running your mouth?


8 posted on 07/30/2012 11:55:02 AM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: cripplecreek

Recording a police officer on a sidewalk and responding in the negative to an officer’s *demand* for your cell phone is *not* a legitimate reason to beat up any individual, paraplegic or not.


9 posted on 07/30/2012 11:55:19 AM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: Altariel

Proof?


10 posted on 07/30/2012 11:56:36 AM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: Altariel

—Recording a police officer on a sidewalk and responding in the negative to an officer’s *demand* for your cell phone is *not* a legitimate reason to beat up any individual, paraplegic or not.—

I firmly agree.

Meanwhile, I wonder what the cops said happened.


11 posted on 07/30/2012 11:58:38 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: Altariel

—Recording a police officer on a sidewalk and responding in the negative to an officer’s *demand* for your cell phone is *not* a legitimate reason to beat up any individual, paraplegic or not.—

I firmly agree.

Meanwhile, I wonder what the cops said happened.


12 posted on 07/30/2012 11:59:45 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: Altariel
"Plaintiff believed the search of this civilian vehicle was being conducted in a very aggressive manner
Actually, since he had a cell phone, he should have dialed 911 ... unless, of course, his real intent was less than honorable.
13 posted on 07/30/2012 11:59:57 AM PDT by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: paddles

whale
verb
whaled
whal·ing

Definition of WHALE
transitive verb

1
: lash, thrash

2
: to strike or hit vigorously

3
: to defeat soundly
Origin of WHALE
origin unknown
First Known Use: circa 1790

From Merriam-Webster

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/whale


14 posted on 07/30/2012 12:00:45 PM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: KarlInOhio

Do you always take everything written by an ambulance chaser at face value?


15 posted on 07/30/2012 12:03:13 PM PDT by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: cripplecreek

The video from the cell phone camera undoubtedly includes part of their conversation.

The established history of officers beating up people for refusing to turn over private property without a warrant.

The established history of officers feeling threatened when their activities are recorded on a cell phone camera. As even Law Dog acknowledges—cell phone cameras have been used to exonerate cops engaging in lawful behavior. The fact that he *demanded* the citizen’s camera indicates a guilty conscience.

The proper response, had he been acting lawfully, would have been. “Thank you, Citizen.”

The wounds on the paraplegic are additional evidence.


16 posted on 07/30/2012 12:04:46 PM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: paddles

Sounds to me like it’s a “whale of a tale.”


17 posted on 07/30/2012 12:05:17 PM PDT by dfwgator (FUJR (not you, Jim))
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To: Altariel

Meditations on cameras
Apparently there has been some Internet kerfuffle involving officers being videotaped by citizens. Seems some officers get their Hanes all up in a half-hitch about it — to the point of pulling some truly feather-legged stunts.

Why?

And I’m asking that question of both sides, by-the-by.

I ask the officers because, well, duh. If you’re not doing anything to be ashamed of, why do you care if someone videotapes you?

The advent of the dash-cam was a turning point in modern police work. It has cleared more cases and exonerated more officers than any other single instrument in history.

The only problem with the dash-cam is that it has a relatively narrow field-of-view ... which is fixed. Once the cruiser is parked, the dash-cam can’t move.

And I’m here to tell you, when critters decide to resist, or evade, or get really squirrelly, most of the time it doesn’t happen on the hood of your cruiser.

So, now you have a dash-cam that’s going to follow you, that you don’t pay for, that the tax money of the citizens of your County doesn’t pay for, that pays for it’s own maintenance, supplies it’s own parts ... where’s the downside?

Hell, if someone wants to follow me around on patrol with a video camera I’d probably hand him a ride-along sheet and offer to buy him coffee.

Remember, children, even as officers we have the Sixth Amendment right: “to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor.”

Allegations of minor misconduct by officers are on the rise. By “minor misconduct” I mean complaints that officers were unprofessional, or rude, or abrupt, or any number of things that can ding your personnel file.

Hell, I know of a neighboring department that opened a file on an officer because someone complained that the officer “displayed his tattoos in a menacing manner.”

Call it Death by Nibbling Ducks.

And here we have someone with hard evidence that can either show that the allegation is a distortion, is an exaggeration, or is an outright lie; or it can show the totality of the circumstances of the event.

As long as you are abiding by your oaths ... like I said: where’s the down-side to this?

As for the citizens ...

... I love you to death, I will happily buy you coffee, I will insist that you take this card with the direct line to Infernal Internal Affairs, as well as a map to their lair office, I will probably send you “Thank You” notes — but, I think you’re crazy.

For Freyja’s sake, I hope you never video anything Really Good.

I won’t ask you your name when you first start following me — because it’s not really any of my business.

However, the moment Anything Good happens in your presence, you’re no longer A Citizen, you are A Witness; and it becomes my duty to demand your name, address, and date of birth.

I will not seize your camera — unless someone is heading for the Emergency Room, or room temperature, and even then I’ll probably just wait for the detectives to seize your camera.

And that’s the worst thing I could do to you. I’ll let you noodle about for “Chain of Custody”, but you’re going to learn to hate that phrase.

Another one you’ll learn to hate is: subpoena duces tecum.

Just for giggles some time, look up the Latin translation of that phrase, and understand that judges have no sense of humour at all about it.

My friend, you see that person with the big white grin in the thousand-dollar suit sitting next to the defendant? You know why that suit costs a thousand dollars? Because it has to be specially tailored around the dorsal fin.

When Mama’s Little Dumplin’ who ain’t never done nuffin’ except sing in the choir, deliver home-cooked meals to the disadvantaged, and rescue kittens is accused of resisting arrest/assault on public servant/retaliation against a public servant/domestic violence/drive-by shooting/armed robbery/fill in the blank here ...

... your video of the incident, or of the victim, or of the crime scene is going to become an important part of the case against Mama’s Little Dumplin’, because juries just looooove videos.

And the tile-crawling shark defence attorney knows that juries just looooove videos. So he (or she) knows that if he wants to earn his retainer he’s (or she’s) is going to have to get the video either thrown out, or discredited on the stand.

Welcome to the prosecution. This is the witness stand. Yes, that is a bulls-eye on your chest. With appeals and the probably inevitable civil trial, you could be here for years.

Love ya. Shift starts the usual time on Monday. If you’re late, I’ll swing by the Stab-and-Grab on Main every so often so you can catch up.

LawDog

http://thelawdogfiles.blogspot.com/2012/01/mediations-on-cameras.html


18 posted on 07/30/2012 12:08:11 PM PDT by Altariel ("Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal!")
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To: oh8eleven

That’s my whole issue with this crap.

When I was a 20 something one of my friends had his front teeth knocked out by a cop. When I asked my friend why he said “I earned it.”


19 posted on 07/30/2012 12:08:58 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: dfwgator

Careful, Mr. Helper has his dictionary out to keep us all in line on this thread!


20 posted on 07/30/2012 12:09:46 PM PDT by paddles ("The more corrupt the state, the more it legislates." Tacitus)
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To: Altariel
Memory is cheap enough and cameras are small enough that it is reasonable for a person to have a camera on their body somewhere recording constantly through the day. About the only problem part is the battery. Considering how many exhibitionists put everything on Facebook, there will be a market for people just mounting a camera to their heads and recording everything they do just in case something interesting happens. Cops are just going to have to get used to the idea that while doing their jobs they will be recorded and by too many people to detain them all. Even if they try, some will get away with videos of the cops removing cameras from people.
21 posted on 07/30/2012 12:25:37 PM PDT by KarlInOhio (Recycled Olympic tagline Shut up, Bob Costas. Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!)
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Case filed and assigned to a court already. Jury trial requested. A follow-up post on the result can be helpful, probably 6 months from now unless a plea is entered quickly.

http://dockets.justia.com/docket/illinois/ilndce/1:2012cv05813/271963/

Miller v. City of Harvey, Illinois

Plaintiff: Marc Miller
Defendants: City of Harvey, Illinois, Shane Gordan and Officer Simpkins

Case Number: 1:2012cv05813
Filed: July 24, 2012

Court: Illinois Northern District Court
Office: Chicago Office
County: Cook
Presiding Judge: Samuel Der-Yeghiayan

Nature of Suit: Civil Rights - Other Civil Rights
Cause: 42:1983
Jurisdiction: Federal Question
Jury Demanded By: Plaintiff


22 posted on 07/30/2012 12:52:18 PM PDT by AlmaKing
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To: Altariel

Did he have an assistance dog for the cops to shoot? If not, I can understand why they had to beat him up.


23 posted on 07/30/2012 12:55:55 PM PDT by MeganC (The Cinemark theatre in Aurora, CO is a 'Gun Free Zone'. Spread the word.)
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To: Altariel

Interesting. If I had to spell it I would spelled it “wailed”.


24 posted on 07/30/2012 12:58:28 PM PDT by freedomlover
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To: cripplecreek
When I was a 20 something ...
It's been a long time since I was 20, but long before even then - when they still carried real night sticks - I knew not to screw with the cops. Period.
25 posted on 07/30/2012 12:58:55 PM PDT by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: cripplecreek

Maybe, but not for filming cops.
Every department needs to update cops on First and Fourth Amendment Rights and keep their cops from doing stupid stuff like that.

Besides, if they’re not doing anything wrong, what do they have to worry about?


26 posted on 07/30/2012 1:14:42 PM PDT by Little Ray (AGAINST Obama in the General.)
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To: cripplecreek

There’s a scene in this movie “Eagle vs. Shark” where a guy returns back home to have a showdown fight with the bully who beat him up when he was a kid. When the day comes for the big fight, the bully shows up in a wheelchair, paralyzed from the waist down. Instead of cancelling the fight, they end up going at it anyway, and it is pretty hilarious.


27 posted on 07/30/2012 1:15:30 PM PDT by Boogieman
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To: oh8eleven

Haha. Oh sure, when I witness possible police misconduct, my first thought is to report that to... the police.


28 posted on 07/30/2012 1:32:00 PM PDT by Boogieman
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To: cuban leaf
Meanwhile, I wonder what the cops said happened.

I'm certain they both claimed the plaintiff kicked them.

Know what the difference is between a Chicago-area cop and a gangbanger?

The uniform.

29 posted on 07/30/2012 2:34:09 PM PDT by pierrem15 (Claudius: "Let all the poisons that lurk in the mud hatch out.")
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To: cripplecreek

You got proff they diddn’t act as charged? I bet it’s on tape...


30 posted on 07/30/2012 2:53:40 PM PDT by SaraJohnson
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To: oh8eleven

Cops are a tad different than when you were twenty.

With homeland inSecurity training and changes in the culture, they are off the rails and need their a$$e$ kicked. They are going to get it, too.

Unfortunately some innocent cops are going to suffer with the bad ones. But that is because the good guys won’t stand up against the bad ones anymore and get back in line with the constitution.


31 posted on 07/30/2012 3:00:23 PM PDT by SaraJohnson
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To: cripplecreek
You got proof that’s why or are you just running your mouth?

Do you have proof that the guy with the phone camera was doing anything wrong? You seem a tad bit oversensitive.


32 posted on 07/30/2012 3:08:42 PM PDT by Sirius Lee (Goode over evil. Voting for mitt or obie is like throwing your country away.)
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To: SaraJohnson
LOL ... thanks ... funniest post I've read in a long time.
You DU trolls never cease to amaze me.
33 posted on 07/30/2012 3:30:43 PM PDT by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: oh8eleven

LOL ... thanks ... funniest post I’ve read in a long time.
You DU trolls never cease to amaze me.


Get bent. :)


34 posted on 07/30/2012 6:17:37 PM PDT by SaraJohnson
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