Skip to comments.ACLU wants probe into police-staged DNC protest
Posted on 11/09/2008 12:34:20 PM PST by BGHater
When a Jefferson County deputy unleashed pepper spray at unruly protesters on the first night of the Democratic National Convention, he did not know that his targets were undercover Denver police officers.
Now the American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado is questioning whether that staged confrontation by police pretending to be violent inflamed other protesters or officers during the most intense night of the four-day event.
The protest occurred Aug. 25 at 15th Street and Court Place near Civic Center. Police ultimately arrested 106 people, the highest number of arrests in a single day during the convention.
According to a use-of-force police report obtained by the ACLU, undercover Denver detectives staged a struggle with a police commander to get pulled out of the crowd without blowing their cover. The commander knew they were working undercover, and the plan was to pull them out of the crowd and pretend they were under arrest so protesters would be none the wiser.
A Jefferson County deputy, unaware of the presence of undercover police, thought that the commander was being attacked and used pepper spray on the undercover officers.
The report says that the commander and an undercover detective were sprayed, but it does not indicate how many others were affected. The report also doesn't say whether the pepper spray used on the undercover police was the first deployment of chemicals that night or whether the riot was already underway.
Denver police have said they were trying to control the crowd moving from Civic Center. The officers testified in court that they had intelligence that anarchists planned to gather in the park, then move toward the 16th Street Mall to wreak havoc at delegate hotels and other businesses. The activists had posted that plan on a publicly available website.
(Excerpt) Read more at denverpost.com ...
I do not side with the ACLU often but in this case it appears they have a case.
The ACLU is PO’d that the Denver PD found a way to spoil the DNC riots before they could build out of control.
It is kind of a shame. 8^)
Exactly how? DPD had a good, low-conflict plan for extracting officers from a difficult situation without blowing their cover. Undercover officers know that things like this happen, and I don’t see what the ACLU has to complain about. Except that they’d rather see the city destroyed by anarchists any day...
I understand that the police must infiltrate protest groups whether they be on the left or right. However, the role of the undercover agents is to monitor their activity and plans and not to push the group to engage in more extreme or violent protest.
I think you’re misunderstanding what happened there. This was a diversionary tactic. Nobody was injured, it got the officers out safely, and the ACLU is involved only to undermine DPD, which did an excellent job. I have family members on DPD, and believe me, they worked long and hard so that there would not be any problems at the DNC.
I don't agree with the ACLU on this one but I also wonder if this police tactic could set off a volatile crowd and lead to an escalation in unruly behavior.
So, they were pretending to be community organizers?
"The police are not here to create disorder. The police are here to preserve disorder."