Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Photos Don't Lie, the Criminal Justice System Did

June, 2010, Washington DC. Congressman Bob Etheridge grabbed and battered a college kid, who asked him in a calm soft voice, 'Do you fully support the Obama agenda?', after greeting him on a public sidewalk.

  • obvious problem: An attack and battery case was committed under daylight on a busy street in front of numerous bystanders caught on tape, which was posted to Youbute, and the story was carried by more than 600 news sites.
  • reality check: No charge filed
    June 12, 2010, Maryland. Montgomery County police officer Dina Hoffman was acquitted of perjury. Family celebrated in the courtroom.

  • obvious problem: Officer Hoffman claimed she caught, and wakened a man behind the wheel in a running car who had passed out drunk. Hoffman had testified against the man 12 times in court, until a surveillance video from a nearby shop surfaced. At the time, the video showed, the man was sleeping in a backseat of his friend's car in a park-to-ride parking lot, waiting for his friend to give him a ride home.
  • reality check: Officer was acquitted.
  • unrelated, but also in Maryland, a neighboring County called Frederick, also a female officer, Officer First Class Megan Mattingly admitted she lied in a drug case. Mattingly admitted she did not witness an alleged drug deal, although she wrote in her report that she did. In a sense, officer Mattingly was 'bedeviled'. She testified in the court that her training at the Police Academy instructed that an officer always write in the first person, whether they witnessed something firsthand or not. No wonder the police chief invited the good o' neighbor Montgomery Police Department to 'investigate'. The aforementioned officer Dina Hoffman is a member of the Montgomery Police Department. No charge is filed.
    March 15, 2010, Maryland. State trooper Joseph David Uhler, in plain clothes, driving an unmarked car, with no lights flashing, intercepted a motorist and pulled his gun on him, alleging driving 80 in 65 zone on I95. The guy has a video camera attached to his helmet, which recorded the scene continuously. The guy then posted the video online. Maryland State trooper detained the guy's entire family, including his parents and little sister who is still at school age. Seized his parent's three computers, and threw the guy in jail.

  • obvious problem: No law is violated by the guy when videotaping on a public road. Maryland State law specifically stated: State courts interpreted laws to protect communications only when parties have a reasonable expectation of privacy. Plus, the guy does not even live with his parents. Actually, the judge who later released the guy after he was able to posting a $15,000 bail 26 hours later said, "I have no idea why you're charged with this".
  • reality check: Maryland State Trooper did not admit wrongdoing, while the judge who signed the search warranty of the guy's parents' home claimed 'privacy'.
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