Saturday, April 11, 2015

Statements: Video of Deputies 37 Punches, 17 Kicks, 2 Minutes

Note the embarrassment to good honest officers sworn to protect and serve.


Let's look at some statements:

Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon:

 "I'm asking for some patience while we complete a thorough and fair investigation.  I am disturbed and troubled by what I see in the video. It does not appear to be in line with our policies and procedures. I assure you, if there is criminal doing on the part of any of our deputy sheriffs or any policy violations, we will take action." 

We note the statement begins with the strong pronoun "I"
He was "disturbed and troubled" by what he saw; also with the pronoun "I"
Note the word "appear";
Note the emphatic phrase "I assure you", which, unnecessary, is important and suggests sensitivity about him taking action.  Is this justified?

He then moves from the pronoun "I" to the pronoun "we" in the topic of taking action.  He had the need, in the context of "taking action" to use the emphasis of "I assure you" and when he spoke of actually taking action, the "I" was no longer used, as it became "we."

Now, compare this to the North Charleston shooting, and its leader's comment:

 To this, the Police Chief said:  "I was sickened by what I saw. And I have not watched it since."

Note that there are some important elements in this statement:
First, it is his reaction.  It "sickened" him, as he uses the pronoun "I";
Then, note what he reports in the negative, what he has not done since:  watched it.  This correlates to the first sentence.
Note what is absent from his statement:  qualifiers.

statement: Next, the suspect's attorney:

"He remembers being beat, and he remembers that he wasn't resisting, that he laid still, he complied immediately. He says that he didn't even move a muscle because he didn't want to be continuously beat, yet it still happened," attorney Sharon Brunner said.

The use of "remembers" is an indication that blows to the head may have caused the loss of some memories.

 After the beating, a deputy whispered in his ear: "This isn't over,'" attorney Jim Terrell said. "And that's why he's scared to death for himself and his family right now," Terrell said.

The flow of adrenaline can be difficult to control:

 Ken Cooper, a New York-based use of force expert who trains police, said it appears the San Bernardino deputies allowed their emotions and adrenaline to get the best of them.

 "When chasing a fleeing suspect, in high stress, you have to control that," he said.

"The justification for using force is to gain compliance from the suspect, and the suspect seems to be complying. So what this looks like is those blows are not justified, they're not necessary and they're not professional."

Cooper's statement does not show justification for the beating, but explanation and understanding:  self governing, in high stress, high hormonal release activities, must be done.  It is best accomplished before training begins:

In the interview process.

During this time, liars are not the only ones screened out.

In dealing with a profession that warrants carrying lethal force, it is imperative to weed out those who cannot govern their own passions.  These will often reveal themselves in language of combativeness.

This same theme is seen in various other "high hormone" activities, which will enter the language.

In war, especially after hand-to-hand combat, it was very difficult to control soldiers' rage when prisoners were captured.
Also in war, the general lawlessness is always difficult to leaders to control, which was, at times, handled with the most severe of consequences, including battle field capital punishment.

The inability to govern one's own passions, in extreme stress, can be screened in the interview process using Analytical Interviewing, and later, with those who are not given to such outbursts as seen in domestic violence, can undergo training to practice or 'rehearse' controlling one's reaction.

It is something best trained, however, in childhood.

In sports, athletes are taught to utterly defeat, sport specific, using extreme physical force, their opponents.  This "competitive" aspect of their personalities, cultivated since childhood, has, when absent early training in self control, led to  high levels of domestic violence.  Chaplains, for example, of minor league hockey teams, have reported this for years, seeking to help athletes turn off their competitive nature when dealing with their wives and children.  One explained it this way:

The athlete dominates, controls and subdues his opponent and gets paid (rewarded) for it.  When he is at home in "real life", he "doesn't understand why the kids won't obey their mother the way they do him" and enters into competition of sorts, with his own wife, to see "who is the best parent."  It comes out in the language, especially when visiting other parents.  Sometimes it is used to belittle:  "Do I have to handle everything since you can't?!"

In this post, I have highlighted a cop who shot a man to death; deputies who mercilessly beat a man in submission.

Why now the topic of sports?

Once upon a time in America, "sportsmanship" mattered.  There was a very different meaning to the word "masculinity" than what is understood today.

Masculinity was  defined, in practice, as the sacrifice of strength.

This is why men held doors for women, and why the overwhelming majority of men on the Titanic yielded to "women and children first."  It did not make for recent good Hollywood, nonetheless, this is what the eyewitness reports gave us in truthful language. "Women and children first" meant the sacrifice of strength; that is, the ability to use physical force to get men on to the life boats over women.  The resort to brute violence would have meant the physically weakest would have been lost, while the physically strongest would have survived, Darwinism safely in tact.   

When an athlete "defeated" his opponent, for example, by carrying his ball past a certain line, with others using their strength to physically stop him, he refrained himself from excess.  To taunt his opponent was considered "unsportsmanlike conduct" and in some sports, was penalized.  He was to, literally, control himself, in the very moment where the violent clash yielded him success.

Today, professional athletes not only confess, but boast that they rehearse their choreographed taunts of their opponents, in sport after sport, while kids watching ESPN clips see professional athletes grabbing their own groin, dancing, mocking, ridiculing and taunting their opponent.  These same children are taught in school:  "no one is more important than you.  You are the best.  You deserve the best.  Everyone else is subordinate to you. "

In short, they are taught:  "Your self esteem is more important than empathy for others" and when sports agents whisper to their clients, "every 10 seconds you are on Sports Center translates to 1 million dollars in future earnings so ham it up", the lessons are reaffirmed as SC plays to the least common denominator, no different than politicians do.

A young boy learns early that in order to obtain something, he must actually work for it. At 12, he had a paper route, and at 13, he cut neighbors' lawns.  When he turned 16, he worked after school and saved every penny to buy that car he had always dreamed of.  He washed it weekly, pampered it, changed the oil, and in short, took great care of it in all the small details.

 Would you think he would easily loan it out to friends who don't work for what they have, and don't take good care of the things given to them?

Not likely.

Thus a lesson of respect can be applied in other areas of life.

In chronic domestic violence, I have been involved with victims and perpetrators for more than 25 years in everything from investigations, affidavit, analysis, volunteer, counselor, and so on.  The perpetrators I dealt with were not those  who exercised small, proper manners towards his wife or girlfriend.  Their words revealed bullying, control, insecurity, competition and disrespect, often calling his wife or girlfriend names that'd make some locker rooms blush.

In a nation that no longer seems to know the difference between a man and a woman, there are still those who believe in teaching their sons that hitting a girl is "unmanly" and that although their self esteem is important, it is equally important to empathize with others.  It may seem "old fashioned" that my son holds Heather's chair at the dinner table, night after night, but he has been doing this since he got out of the baby seat, himself.  This, along with lessons such as not seating until his sister is also seated, and that it is distinctly not masculine to strike a woman, even while condemned as "sexist", will help assure that in our society, he will never perpetrate violence against a woman.

It matters not how you teach your children to show respect, but that they are taught respect for life.  Whether one removes all violent video games, or another limits exposure to music, or still another may find another way, the conclusion of the matter is respectful in little things can lead to respect in larger things, more times than not.  It is not a cure all, but principle is not established by exception.  Teach boys early respect for women, and reduce violence later on.

Every day, online, videos of violence are posted.  Every day. In Brazil, it has become 'popular' for gangs to video phone their executions.

 More and more violence is being reported between females and in this daily parade of 2 minute iPhone clips, I watched men on the scene, yelling "world star", "ratchet girl", employing profane language, and either encourage the female combatants, or assaulting the one who seems to back away from the fight.

A few days ago, I saw a video of two mothers getting their three or four year old children to fight. It was from Central America, and the villagers gathered around for the "fight", actually pushing the one reluctant child, into the fight, while she cried and held her head.

Not a single villager intervened.

In black rap music, women are often denigrated with vile names and reduced to objects for indiscriminate sex.

In the Koran, women are reduced to lesser humans, with prescriptions to "strike them" so that they might "learn" from their husbands.   Even in the UK, there is an unwillingness to tell Muslims to "stop" abusing their wives, as they fear being labeled "racist" or "islamophobic", with yet another gay man murdered this week (replete with photos of the stoning), little media attention was paid.  It is interesting to note that Islam is not a race but is prescriptively violent and it is degrading to women, overall.

Back home here, the lack of civility is way beyond outward manners.

Cameras will help the public and will help honest police officers.  It has come down to this and it is necessary.   One does not need much imagination to think of what the South Carolina police officer's written report looked like.

Statement Analysis of such reports would yield information vital to the case.  Cameras will help everyone.

Yet as we saw with the one racist cop who cared little for the running video, the camera is a band-aid; a good band-aid, but still just treatment of a symptom and not the disease.

I overheard a parent criticizing a 12 year old hockey player.  She was displeased that the player did not "appear" happy after scoring a goal, intimidating that his parents were "killjoy" types.   He scored and received "high fives" and "helmet bumps" from his teammates, but no further.

A game before this, the critic's son had 'celebrated' a goal.  Well, kind of.  He shot the puck, thought it went in, and skated over to the audience, away from his team mates, and feigned a dance routine in which he pretended to 'rock the baby to sleep' in his arms.  Many of the parents cheered him on.

He had to be told "no goal" by his team mate.  The "rock the baby" routine  was to insult the opponent.  The boy had been practicing this in the locker room and although team mates had told him to "knock it off" and "don't you dare try that in a real game", he could not resist.

The taunting of the vanished is no longer considered "unsportsmanlike" conduct.  Instead, it is a highlight reel.

The top selling video or electronic games compete, one with another, on which has the most graphic violence.

Rap musicians are upheld in spite of vile misogynistic lyrics often directed, with anger, towards women.

Islamic violence, female genitalia mutilation, "honor killings" and domestic violence, as prescribed in Islam, is said, by the president, to be not Islamic.

Hundreds of students are killed  in obedience to the Koran, because they could not recite the Koran, but this is not "religious" violence and anyone who says contrary, is "racist."

In our military,  professional soldiers are taught to kill, but can get in trouble for insulting someone before killing him.

We cannot even watch a video of an Easter egg hunt without seeing parents committing acts of violence, one towards another, in defense of their own child's "right" to have something above another's child.

That we see the absurd violence explode in this video should not come as any surprise, percentage wise, as we can expect such things from any profession.  That it comes from those who possess lethal weapons, however, becomes a game changer.

Now, law enforcement professionals must all cringe, though had race been part of the California beating, it would have been worse because, perhaps, our president would have used the opportunity to portray all police, again, as dangerous.

What motivated the South Carolina murder?

To this point, we do not have an answer, though we might as we learn more about his record, and others speak up.  I want to know what he was thinking when he pulled the trigger, again and again and again.

That quick, unequivocal reaction was seen, much more trouble may have been avoided.  The shooter was arrested and charged with murder, and the camera solution was quickly embraced.  Behind this, there were likely rank and file police officers insisting upon body cams, yet met with the typical response of funding problems.

This is another opportunity to realize that good law enforcement professionals are underpaid, and sometimes leave law enforcement to better provide for their families.  We sometimes lose the best and brightest, and morale, after these recent incidents, will be sorely impacted for good officers.

Better screening and better pay; hiring the best and brightest, with blinders on as to anything outside of qualification, is a beginning.

As to the deputies who inflicted 37 punches and 17 kicks, in a period of two minutes following the fleeing suspect's surrender, you, the reader, may ask yourself:

"Would I be comfortable knowing that this officer was pulling over my teenager in a traffic stop?"


John Mc Gowan said...

OT: More sad news.

Barway Collins search party finds body of child

The search party looking for missing 10-year-old Barway Collins says they have found the body of a child in North Mississippi Regional Park in Minneapolis. The Crystal Police Department and Hennepin County Water Patrol have arrived at the scene.

The body was found about 25 feet from shore. There is no confirmation from law enforcement on any other details. A group, including searchers and law enforcement, are huddling up inside the taped-off perimeter, with an update expected soon.

Barway Collins has been missing since the afternoon of March 18. The police investigation is focusing on what happened after Barway left a school van in front of the Cedarwood Apartments. In video footage, Barway looks out the window and is heard referring to his father, Pierre Collins, and an "uncle."

Crystal Police Chief Stephanie Revering has named Pierre Collins a suspect in the 4th grader's disappearance.

John Mc Gowan said...

OT: More sad news.

Barway Collins search party finds body of child

The search party looking for missing 10-year-old Barway Collins says they have found the body of a child in North Mississippi Regional Park in Minneapolis. The Crystal Police Department and Hennepin County Water Patrol have arrived at the scene.

The body was found about 25 feet from shore. There is no confirmation from law enforcement on any other details. A group, including searchers and law enforcement, are huddling up inside the taped-off perimeter, with an update expected soon.

Barway Collins has been missing since the afternoon of March 18. The police investigation is focusing on what happened after Barway left a school van in front of the Cedarwood Apartments. In video footage, Barway looks out the window and is heard referring to his father, Pierre Collins, and an "uncle."

Crystal Police Chief Stephanie Revering has named Pierre Collins a suspect in the 4th grader's disappearance.

Anonymous said...

In both cases the motive is peer-pressure. The foremost thought in S.C. cop's mind was that his fellow officers didn't know that he let a guy get away.
In LA County, the Deputies were not "letting emotions get the better of them"-- far from it. They knew that the tradition in LA law enforcement is that when a guy runs and cops chase him, Cops kick him at the end. It is an effort to establish a cost for running from the cops-- the courts will treat every collar the same way, so the police need to make it very unappealing for suspects to run from them. Having said that, stomps to the head and to the genitals are not acceptable because that often means permanent damage. In a case with a veteran criminal who knows the rules about running, every cop in the chase gets one kick to the ribs. It's almost a duty.

lulu said...

i'm sickened and my jaw is dropped.
is that happening HERE in our country?? no..
sickening mob of sub-humans!

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the horse thief beating is a fake, a staged event. I cite two reasons. First, take a good look at the blows, the punches and kicks look staged , more like a bad act than blows thrown in anger. They look weak and held back.
Secondly, from 1:00 to 1:19 in the longer video the horse stands adjacent to the attack utterly calm. The horse only reacts at 1:19 as men run up to it from two angles. Why would a stolen horse act so completely calm next to strangers beating a man? Horses are sensitive animals are they not and wouldn't the horse have gotten quite excited if this were a real attack?
Something does not add up here.

John Mc Gowan said...

Who would be a Cop in today's current climate?. Not me for sure.

LE are getting bad press lately. But this is what they have to put with on a daily basis!

Video Shows Deadly Brawl Between Gaver Family and Cops at Arizona Walmart

Sus said...

I love this article. Thank you, Peter. I didn't watch the video for the same reason I didn't watch the girl beating at McDonald's. I can't watch gang violence like that. As sick as it may sound, I understand when one person like the SC police officer does something abhorrent to society. It's easier to say he is evil and rightly charged with murder. But when a gang of deputies beats a suspect it's like saying something is wrong with US. Now what? I'm glad you looked at it.

wreyeter72 said...

I'm curious how statement analysis works on "PR Speak." Much of the quotes you have in this post are just that, people carefully wording what they say for a number of reasons. I'm a PR Director for a major school district, and when I respond to the media on incidents that either are or have the potential to end up with a court proceeding, I find myself thinking very carefully about what words to use. So often there is scads of information that would lessen the pressure on the district, if only I could speak frankly and give it out. Unfortunately, because of privacy laws, most news stories end up being a parent telling a story, any story they want even when it's blatant lies, and me saying " I can't divulge any details of a personnel matter or student record." Not surprisingly, it's extremely hard to defend against public opinion, when the public is fed lies by the local newspaper I can't legally set straight. It's the one part of my job I dislike. For example, we had seven students attack a girl on a school bus - breaking both of the girl's eye sockets. Campus pd watched the bus video (I did also) and saw the verbal argument turn into a melee when one of the seven leaped over the bus seats and attacked the girl. The grandparent of one of the kids, who was suspended for fighting, went to the newspaper and claimed the girl grabbed her granddaughter, threw her in the floor and started beating her, which is not even close to the truth. We couldn't release the video and couldn't tell the story - FERPA keeps us for telling details on a student's discipline incidents. Needless to say, it's frustrating to have such tall tales published with only one side told.

Statement Analysis Blog said...

PR Work: interesting!!

I have softened a bit over the years on this and have come to see that PR work should be included in context.

Having stated this, we then proceed with:

a. attempt to persuade where, the expectation is to just report.

b. Where attempt to persuade is applicable (in a PR report), what words, specifically, are used?

The context of PR work moves the "expected" slightly to the left or right, with the change noted. This is the most important element because, like an allegation, it tells us:
Why is the person writing.

The occasion for writing (or speaking) is always important and is what we are told before analysis.

The frustration you feel is real. HIPPA laws can do the same.

Here is something you might relate to:

When I worked for child protective, the same parents who so horrifically abused their children, went to the press, and on camera, not only cried, but outright lied.

It caused public backlash against a department that was not permitted to say:

"Really? Mommy forgot to tell you that she used her baby's head as a punching bag because she ran out of heroin, and that we have x amount of doctor reports showing not only nutritional neglect, but when mommy claimed the state refused to give her food stamps, mommy was selling them for drugs and even when she was handed baby formula, she sold it, and when she lived in another state she lost custody of her kids there and..."

I once watched one of the most brutally cruel mothers I have ever encountered be appointed to a parents' advocacy board against the state.

Readers here know that I am all about personal freedom and personal responsibility and limited government.

What is not always known is just how hard some of Maine's CPS workers try to avoid taking a child into custody. They do everything they can to mitigate the abuse/neglect, and search through relatives to find one who is not only willing to take a child, but can pass a drug test.

Like law enforcement, the rare abuser of power gives everyone a bad name. Everyone suffers.

"Fake Hate" helps no one.

I do empathize with your frustration.