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SPD Officer Goes MMA On 17-Year Old Kid

December 8, 2010

Imagine this: you’re 17 years old and you’re standing in a convenience store with a friend when suddenly there’s a commotion outside.  You see a group of men run full speed past the store, and you step out to get a better look.  The next thing you know, a pissed off man in army fatigues points to you and then charges.  You back up into the convenience store, your hands raised above your head, and the man kicks you between your legs. You fall to the ground. He kicks you in the chest, the face and the head.

You’re probably scared for your life.  You’re probably wishing someone would call the police.  Well, no need.  That man that just kicked you as hard as he could- he’s a cop; on of Seattle’s finest.

To make matters worse, this officer and his buddies have just positively ID’d you as being at the scene of an undercover drug deal gone bad, resulting in the assault of an officer. Those men you saw running past the store? That’s what they were running from.

Here’s the cherry on top- everything was caught on video. You should be in the clear. Instead you’re facing criminal charges.

It’s just one in a string of incidents involving police officers caught on camera punching, kicking or stomping people on the streets of Seattle.

The drama went down in mid-October, but the video wasn’t made public until a month later, when a local news station got a hold of it. SPD says it had no idea the video existed until a reporter asked for comment; the reporter says SPD had its own copy for weeks, but did nothing with it.

When they heard it was going to air on tv, they reassigned the officer to his home and launched an investigation. They aren’t the only ones. The ACLU of Washington says it is calling for a sweeping civil rights investigation into the department, and US Attorney Jenny Durkan has vowed to closely scrutinize the department.

It’s about damn time.

The Seattle Police Department seems incapable of policing itself, and the city of Seattle is no better. Case in point: it’s been eight months since another Seattle police officer was captured kicking a man in the head and threatening to beat the effing Mexican piss out of him, and yet the Seattle City attorney is still trying to decide whether or not to file charges. Really? Eight months? Maybe City Attorney Holmes expects us to forget that one so he won’t have to deal with it.

With this latest video, let’s not forget a 17 year old kid is now facing criminal charges for a crime he- by all accounts- didn’t commit and had nothing to do with. But because officers in the Seattle police department point to him as a suspect he could go to prison.  Selling drugs to an undercover cop is pretty serious- almost as serious as assaulting one. What kind of chance does a person stand when the accusers and the witnesses are all cops?

The video doesn’t lie, and in this case, there are three videos- the store surveillance tape which shows the kids walking to the store from the opposite direction of the drug bust, the video of the drug bust itself, and a cellphone video taken by a bystander.

Who do you believe?

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