Friday, November 17, 2006

University of California at Los Angeles Police: Merging Brutality and Cluelessness

(hat tip Amanda)

In the God-I-Wish-It-Were-Unbelievable File:

University Police at UCLA repeatedly used a taser on a student Tuesday night. Several times after he was already handcuffed, in fact. The student was in the library after 11pm, and didn't produce his ID when asked.

The police have stated the student was belligerent, and trying to incite a crowd. Um, yeah, from what I see in the student videos, the student was in fact belligerent, but the crowd was incited not by the student's actions, but by those of the police.

The kid was told to leave the library, and was either being obnoxiously slow about it, or needed a minute to get his crap together. That's not clear. The police went to take him into custody as he was leaving, and he screamed 'don't touch me.' That's where the student videos pick up.

The student stated that he had a medical condition, and the police continued to use their tasers on him. (I'm pretty sure that's a second reason this assault was against the law. The first being that the student did not present a clear and present danger to the police or his fellow students.)

I'm not a law enforcement officer, but as far as I can tell, being a dick is not cause for using force. I'm also not a neurologist or a psychologist, but I'm pretty sure I would become pretty damned non-compliant after being assaulted. When a student who was explaining to the police that electrical shock makes people unable to comply with physical commands, he was threatened with tasing. So, that's illegal act number three. The police cannot threaten you for asking for their identifying information.

Use of force is meant to be the LAST RESORT of the police. "I don't like your attitude" is NEVER a constitutionally-supported reason to use force, or to threaten the use of force.

The Video

UCLA Interim Chancellor Norm Abrams Contact Information:
Telephone: 310-825-2151
Fax: 310-206-6030

Address (U.S. Mail):
Box 951405, Murphy Hall 2147
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1405

Address (Campus Mail):
Murphy Hall 2147
Campus: 140501

E-mail (


Student said...

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kofi said...

that is insane.
let's hope they're overwhelmed with calls and are forced to do something about it

clanger said...

Little change since Rodney King then (1991).

Although 15 years on they use tasers instead.