Two New York City Police officers will not face charges after the Manhattan District Attorney decided that widely circulated videos of them punching and pepper-spraying protesters amounted to insufficient evidence that they had done so.
From Columnist George F. Will:
There were abundant dystopian aspects of New York City in the 1980s, when crime, crack and AIDS produced a perfect storm of anxiety about the fraying social fabric. This was the context — a city on edge — when on April 19, 1989, a 28-year-old white woman who worked on Wall Street went for a jog after dark in Central Park. She became a victim of what was immediately called “wilding,” a word probably unknown by the four blacks and one Hispanic, ages 14 to 16, who were arrested and charged with raping her and beating her nearly to death.
After up to 30 hours of separate interrogations by detectives who are paid to be suspicious of suspects, four of the five confessed to a crime they did not commit. Why? Watch this documentary by Ken Burns, David McMahon and Sarah Burns. To see the old videotapes of the interrogations is to understand the dynamic that sent the five to prison despite the absence of evidence to bolster a rickety case that consisted entirely of those contradictory confessions.
More information here.
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Baby Girl was on the verge of being euthanized by Animal Care and Control when Patricia Ratz intervened and took the young pit bull in for foster care last fall.
Fast-forward more than six months, and the 2-year-old dog is staring down death once again, this time after being shot by a police officer, says the dog’s owner.
Ms. Ratz and others are disputing claims made by police after a Saturday afternoon biting incident that resulted in at least one officer critically wounding the dog inside the ball field at Schmul Park in Travis.
While Ms. Ratz and her sister, Kathleen Dixon, were walking their three pit bulls, two of them — not Baby Girl — began to quarrel. Ms. Ratz tried to break up the fight, but one of the dogs bit her hand.
Police said Saturday responding officers tried to help her, and in the attempt to get the dog off her, shots were fired.
Ms. Ratz says that’s not the case.
“We had them separated, we had everything calm,” Ms. Ratz said of the dogs, adding that her hand was scratched up and she shouldn’t have put it near the animals. “A cop comes from the street with her gun pointed straight at the dogs, and she just started shooting. She could’ve shot me, or my sister, or the kids [in the park].”
Two officers arrived, said Ms. Ratz and Ms. Dixon, who says she’s also an NYPD officer, and when Ms. Dixon told them to not fire, she said they disregarded her plea.
“I kept yelling at her that I’m a cop, to not shoot the dogs. They’re not aggressive, they’re not going to bite,” said Ms. Dixon.
One female officer, Julie Moschella, was in uniform, while the other, a male, was dressed in civilian clothing, said Ms. Dixon, saying the man did not identify himself. Both sisters say at least three shots and as many as 10 were fired in the Travis park.
After the officers arrived, Ms. Ratz’s two pit bulls were spooked and fled the scene, resulting in police gunfire. The other dog, Bo, was not injured and found not long afterward. Baby Girl was struck in the back and was later found in a cage inside a police vehicle, the sisters said.
So now a cop is getting first-hand experience on what it’s like to have a police officer come out and shoot a member of your family. I feel bad for the dog, but I don’t feel bad for the cops involved, nor the owner, who is also a cop. Hopefully, this is taken as a valuable lesson and an opportunity to train police better on how to deal with people’s pets. These are like our children and pointing a gun at them is barbaric and excessively vicious. It take a real sadistic piece of shit to hurt an animal.