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1 cinesimon  Dec 3, 2014 2:19:20pm

Eric Garner was filmed being murdered. Made no difference.
Cameras will positively affect the behavior of some police, that’s for sure. But the cops who behave extraordinarily badly now, who’re routinely and successfully defended by their unions and the arbitrators who mysteriously always seem to side with the criminal cops, will find away - regardless of whether they rape, kill, or beat people regularly. And they will be rewarded for it.

2 lawhawk  Dec 3, 2014 4:05:43pm

The Garner video was shot by someone other than a cop (and was actually indicted by a grand jury for a gun charge).

Body cameras are not a panacea. They might help in cases of excessive force and officer involved shootings. They can expose corrupt and bad police practices that have long been claimed but long denied by police without evidence.

But we still have prosecutors and grand juries reluctant to indict on cases that should be self evident of a crime committed. The cop in the Garner case clearly engaged in wrongdoing. The ME found a homicide. The cop engaged in an illegal choke hold.

The prosecutor is ultimately responsible for the failure to indict, as they either didn’t insist that the purpose of this grand jury is to determine whether there’s evidence to move forward or as what happened in Ferguson - overwhelmed the jury with so much chatter that they turned it in to a mini trial that is not what the grand jury is supposed to be.

Either way, we need a serious reform of the treatment of police involved shootings and the necessity for outside oversight. Special prosecutors is one way - that a case is automatically referred to a special prosecutor for indictment. Cops and the law and order types will hate that - because they think that they’ll be pilloried by the prosecutors or that it’s somehow kowtowing to community pressure.

The argument falls flat considering that anyone can end up being the victim of excessive force, or an officer involved shooting. No one, and no community, should have to deal with it. Prosecutors are too close to law enforcement to take a honest look. Grand juries are a reflection on the prosecutors, so if they aren’t indicting, it has much to do with the prosecutorial unwillingness to indict.

3 Rightwingconspirator  Dec 3, 2014 4:58:43pm

Let’s find out by trying them. Carefully. But go for it.

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