Why read any further? She said it in a nutshell. It is what it is? Congratulations NFL New York Giants. IMHO Manningham was the MVP of this SuperBowl .
"Still, as unusual as it was to hear the quarterback’s wife criticize his teammates, she wasn’t saying anything the team didn’t know" Welcome to the NFL Mrs. Brady.
Monday, February 6, 2012
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Just To Get A Better Understanding Of An Unlawful Arrest The Only Thing Missing is A Little Dab Of Excessive Force,With A Dash of Taser
Today was an eventful day. I drove to Cleveland, reunited with my father’s side of the family and got arrested. More on that arrested part to come.
For the labor day weekend my father decided to host a small family reunion. My sister flew in from California and I drove in from Pittsburgh to visit my father, his wife and my little brother and sister. Shortly after arriving we packed the whole family into my father’s Buick and headed off to the grocery store to buy some ingredients to make monkeybread. (It’s my little sister’s birthday today and that was her cute/bizare birthday request.)
Next to the grocery store was a Circuit City. (The Brooklyn, Ohio Circuit City to be exact.) Having forgotten that it was my sister’s birthday I decided to run in and buy her a last minute gift. I settled on Disney’s “Cars” game for the Nintendo Wii. I also needed to purchase a Power Squid surge protector which I paid for separately with my business credit card. As I headed towards the exit doors I passed a gentleman whose name I would later learn is Santura. As I began to walk towards the doors Santura said, “Sir, I need to examine your receipt.” I responded by continuing to walk past him while saying, “No thank you.”
As I walked through the double doors I heard Santura yelling for his manager behind me. My father and the family had the Buick pulled up waiting for me outside the doors to Circuit City. I opened the door and got into the back seat while Santura and his manager, whose name I have since learned is Joe Atha, came running up to the vehicle. I closed the door and as my father was just about to pull away the manager, Joe, yelled for us to stop. Of course I knew what this was about, but I played dumb and pretended that I didn’t know what the problem was. I wanted to give Joe the chance to explain what all the fuss was for.
I reopened the door to talk with Joe and at this point Joe positioned his body between the open car door and myself. (I was still seated in the Buick.) Joe placed his left hand on the roof of the car and his right hand on the open car door. I asked Joe if there was a problem. The conversation went something like this:
Me: “Is there a problem?”
Joe: “I need to examine your bag and receipt before letting you leave this parking lot.”
Me: “I paid for the contents in this bag. Are you accusing me of stealing?”
Joe: “I’m not accusing you of anything, but I’m allowed by law to look through your bag when you leave.”
Me: “Which law states that? Name the law that gives you the right to examine my bag when I leave a Circuit City.”
Of course Joe wasn’t able to name the law that gives him, a U.S. citizen and Circuit City employee the right to examine anything that I, a U.S. citizen and Circuit City customer am carrying out of the store. I’ve dealt with these scare tactics at other stores in the past including other Circuit Cities, Best Buys and Guitar Centers. I’ve always taken the stance that retail stores shouldn’t treat their loyal customers as criminals and that customers shouldn’t so willingly give up their rights along with their money. Theft sucks and I wish that shoplifters were treated more harshly than they are, but the fact is that I am not a
shiplifter shoplifter and shouldn’t have to forfeit my civil rights when leaving a store.
I twice asked Joe to back away from the car so that I could close the door. Joe refused. On three occasions I tried to pull the door closed but Joe pushed back on the door with his hip and hands. I then gave Joe three options:
- “Accuse me of shoplifting and call the police. I will gladly wait for them to arrive.”
- “Back away from the car so that I can close the door and drive away.”
- “If you refuse to let me leave I will be forced to call the police.”
Joe didn’t budge. At this point I pushed my way past Joe and walked onto the sidewalk next to the building. I pulled out my phone and dialed 911.
Two minutes later Brooklyn, Ohio police officer Ernie Arroyo arrived on the scene. As I began to explain the story leading up to Joe Atha preventing my egress from the parking lot, officer Arroyo began to question why I refused to show my receipt in the first place. I explained that I lawfully purchased the contents in the bag and didn’t feel that it was necessary for me to let a Circuit City employee inspect the bag as I left. Officer Arroyo disagreed. He claimed that stores have the right to inspect all receipts and all bags upon leaving their store.
At this point Officer Arroyo asked to see my receipt and driver’s license. I handed over the receipt, and stated that my name is Michael Righi. Again, Officer Arroyo asked to see my driver’s license. The conversation went something like this:
Me: “I’m required by law to state that my name is Michael Righi, but I do not have to provide you with my driver’s license since I am not operating a vehicle.”
Officer Arroyo: “Give me your driver’s license or I will place you under arrest.”
Me: “My name is Michael Righi. I am not willing to provide you with my driver’s license.”
Officer Arroyo: “Turn around and up against the wall.”
At this point I was placed in handcuffs, patted down, had my wallet removed from my back pocket and was placed in the back of Officer Arroyo’s police car. My three siblings sat in the back of the Buick crying their eyes out, which is the only part of today that I regret. I wish my little brother and sisters didn’t have to watch this, but I knew exactly what I was doing and was very careful with my words. Other than putting my family through a little scare I don’t regret anything that happened today.
Officer Arroyo ran my father’s license plate, my driver’s license and inspected my two receipts along with the contents of my bag. He also handed over my Circuit City bag to Joe Atha and allowed him to ensure that in fact I stole nothing from the store.
While being driven down to the station in the back of the police car I struck up a conversation with Officer Arroyo. I asked him if he was surprised that my receipts matched the contents in the bag and in a surprise moment of honesty he admitted that he was. I then asked Officer Arroyo what charges were going to be brought against me. He explained that I had been arrested for failure to produce my driver’s license. I asked him what would happen if I never learned to drive and didn’t have a driver’s license. After all, at the time that he arrested me I was standing on a sidewalk outside a Circuit City. I wasn’t driving a car, and even when I was seated in the Buick I was a back seat passenger. The officer never gave me a satisfactory answer to this question, but promised to explain the law to me after I was booked.
This morning I slept through my alarm clock and was in a hurry to drive to Cleveland. I didn’t have time to iron my shirt, and this is what I regretted while my mugshot was being taken. Listen up kids. Always press your clothes because you never know when you’ll be unlawfully arrested.
Shortly after being booked, fingerprints and all, Officer Arroyo presented me with my charges:
ORD:525.07: Obstructing Official Business (M-2)
(a) No person, without privilege to do so and with purpose to prevent, obstruct or delay the performance by a public official of any authorized act within the public official’s offical capacity shall do any act that hampers or impedes a public official in the performance of the public official’s lawful duties.
Not being able to find the law in the books that states that a citizen must provide a driver’s license while walking through a parking lot, Officer Arroyo had to settle for “obstructing official business.” Keep in mind that the official business that I was supposedly obstructing was business that I initiated by calling the police. I called for help and I got arrested.
My father posted the $300 bail that was needed to get me out of jail and back on my way to Park Avenue Place. (Sorry for the lame Monopoly joke, but it’s my first time being arrested. Cut me some humor slack.) After being released I stuck around the police station for a little while to fill out the necessary paper work to press charges against the Circuit City manager who physically prevented me from leaving the parking lot. I’m most interested in seeing my charges dropped for refusing to present identification, but I view that as a completely separate issue from the store manager interfering with my egress.
I understand that my day would have gone a lot smoother if I had agreed to let loss prevention inspect my bag. I understand that my day would have gone a lot smoother if I had agreed to hand over my driver’s license when asked by Officer Arroyo. However, I am not interested in living my life smoothly. I am interested in living my life on strong principles and standing up for my rights as a consumer, a U.S. citizen and a human being. Allowing stores to inspect our bags at will might seem like a trivial matter, but it creates an atmosphere of obedience which is a dangerous thing. Allowing police officers to see our papers at will might seem like a trivial matter, but it creates a fear-of-authority atmosphere which can be all too easily abused.
I can reluctantly understand having to show a permit to fish, a permit to drive and a permit to carry a weapon. Having to show a permit to exist is a scary idea which I got a strong taste of today.
My hearing is scheduled for September 20th, 2007. I will be contacting the ACLU and the IDP on Tuesday (the next business day), and I plan to fight these charges no matter what it takes. I will provide updates on this page as events unfold.
September 1st, 2007 @ 10:50PM EST Update:The police officer never read me my Miranda rights. I’ve heard differing opinions on how much this really matters and will certainly be bringing this up with my attorney.
September 1st, 2007 @11:34PM EST Update:I found the detail on Ohio’s “stop and identify” law. I encourage you to read it in its entirety, but I will spell out the important part:
2921.29 (C) Nothing in this section requires a person to answer any questions beyond that person’s name, address, or date of birth. Nothing in this section authorizes a law enforcement officer to arrest a person for not providing any information beyond that person’s name, address, or date of birth or for refusing to describe the offense observed.
I stated my name to the police officer, and if he had asked me for my address and date of birth I would have provided that as well. The officer specifically asked for my driver’s license and this is what I was unwilling to provide. If I’m reading this correctly it would appear that Ohio’s law specifically protects citizens from having to hand over driver’s licenses unless they are operating a motor vehicle. This is what I always believed, but it’s nice to see it in writing.
September 2nd, 2007 @10:01AM EST Update: I was speaking to my father this morning about what unfolded yesterday, and he told me something that I was not aware of until this point. While I was speaking to Joe Atha from the back seat of the car, Santura stood in front of my father’s vehicle with his hands out to the side as a way of preventing him from driving forward. My father would not have been able to drive forward because Santura stood in the way, and he would not have been able to drive backwards because the open door would have hit Joe who was leaning into the car.
September 2nd, 2007 @ 5:05PM EST Update:Thank you for those of you who have submitted donations to help me fight these charges. I have been overwhelmed with the response that this story has received in the past twelve hours. A few people contacted me wanting more information about the case. Here are some answers to your questions:
Q: Which police department arrested you?
A: I was a arrested by a police officer working for the City of Brooklyn, Ohio located at 7619 Memphis Avenue Brooklyn, Ohio 44144. This is in Cuyahoga County.
Q: What is your case number?
A: I don’t know if my case number is the same thing as my ticket number, but the officer gave me a summons with the following across the top: “Ticket Number: A10514″
Q: Did you get Officer Ernie Arroyo’s badge number?
A: Yes, his badge number is #49. His surpervisor is Sgt. Knapp, whose badge number is #36.
Q: Should I be boycotting Circuit City?
A: At this time I am not recommending a boycott of Circuit City because Circuit City has yet to respond to my complaint. I want to give them a chance to respond to this incident before determining whether or not it makes sense for me to endorse a boycott.
Q: Should I be contacting the Brooklyn, Ohio Police Department?
A: Thank you for expressing an interest in taking this matter up personally, and thank you to those of you who already contacted the Brooklyn, Ohio police department. However, I urge you to please not tie up their emergency services with complaints. If you would like to voice a complaint I think it would be more appropriate to do so with the mayor or city council. Their contact information is available at the Brooklyn, Ohio City Government web site.
Q: What is the best way to reach you?
A: I can be reached by email at michael dot righi at field expert dot com.
September 4th, 2007 @ 2:53PM EST Update:Thank you to everybody who left a comment on this page. My web server has been taking a beating from all the traffic and I’m afraid I had to turn commenting off in order to keep the site alive. If you would like to read the comments that people left you can do so here.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
CCPD:Taser Brutality in Our Schools and a Familiar Modus Operandi Similarities Resonate in Corpus Christi
CCPD Officer David Mendoza: "If the student would have been swinging, I probably would have shot him"A Cop Shoots a 16-Year-Old In His Classroom
Taser Brutality in Our Schools
Pierre Tristam/Candide’s Notebooks, February 7, 2007
Barbarism with a Taser's face: the M26 model used against the 16-year-old student at Flagler Palm Coast High School, Florida
I’m not going to mention his name, even though it’s been all over the media. His rights have been violated enough. So has his person, physically, violently, by the high school he attends, by the sheriff’s deputy called to subdue him, and subsequently by the sheriff himself and the school district, who alternately rationalized, justified, excused and in some measures applauded what they should have condemned outright as a barbaric act: The willful electrocution by Taser of a 16-year-old boy, a special education student with emotional or behavioral problems, in his classroom, for refusing to do his work. They’ll tell you that he hit a deputy. He did. But only in reaction to the deputy’s attempt to wrestle the boy off his seat and forcibly remove him from his classroom, simply because the student refused to follow directions. The whole thing unfolded in a matter of minutes, not hours: the school wanted to keep its schedule. By morning’s end a 16-year-old had been booked at the county jail on a felony charge, then shipped off to a juvenile “detention” facility one county over. And the deputy typed “case closed” at the end of his incident report. This is the country we’re living in, the police agencies we have to live with, and the school systems that enable them. This is the county I’m living in: this happened in my school district, in Flagler County, last Thursday, at Flagler Palm Coast High School, the school where my daughter would be attending in a couple of years, although I hear the former sheriff, speaking to the school board today, told the five men and women that “if this board doesn’t take a stand you’ll never get a chance to educate my 10-year-old child.” Our daughter is being home-schooled in preparation for ninth grade there. But those words sound right to me.
This, then, is what happened, based on what school district personnel said, what the sheriff said, and what the sheriff’s incident report says. The student was in Robert Ripley’s classroom. He was refusing to complete an assignment. He was being “disruptive.” He was not being violent: he was not physically hurting anyone or anything. He was acting out. Nothing extraordinary there, in the sense that disruptions like that occur, even with “regular” students, and are expected to occur with special ed students. Paul Peacock, a vice-principal, and another individual whose name was misspelled on the incident report were in Robert Ripley’s classroom when the “school resource deputy,” Scott Vedder, arrived. (For those of you reading this in more civilized places, like New Jersey, cops are routinely assigned to permanent security detail in schools here, even in elementary schools, and euphemistically referred to as “school resource officers” or “school resource deputies.” An uncle of mine from Princeton, N.J., who happened to be visiting here the evening after the incident at the high school, was describing to me a school in Jersey that was testing the law by attempting to forbid cops from entering school grounds even if going after a student suspect; the school was arguing that a school should be a sanctuary. Interesting idea. Heretical, in a semi-police state like Florida . Likely laughable, in a county like mine.)
Let Vedder’s account in his incident report pick up the story at this point; the timeline picks up just before Vedder arrives, based on what the adults in the room told Vedder:
When [the student] was approached by his teacher R. Ripley, he became very belligerent and refused to participate. [The student] advised R. Ripley that he was not going to do the assignment and pushed all of his books onto the floor and threw his pencil across the room. At that time R. Ripley asked [the student] to leave the room with him. [The student] refused and said “fuck you.” At that time Mr. Peacock walked into the class room [sic.]. Upon Mr. Peacock being advised of the situation he had the other students relocate to the class room next door and asked for my assistance via school radio. While I was responding to the class room Mark Montieth arrived and he and Mr. Peacock continued to coax [the student] to leave the class room. [The student] refused to get out of his chair and go to the dean’s office. I then attempted to talk with [the student]. I attempted to talk [the student] into leaving the class room peacefully. I advised him that we needed to go to Mr. Peacock’s office and talk before the situation gets worse than it needs to be.
The emphasis is mine: not only has the deputy already escalated the situation by his presence; he is dropping threats of how much further the situation will escalate. There’s pre-meditation in crime. There’s also such a thing as pre-meditated provocation, a police skill. You see it in action here: the student wasn’t worsening the situation with his obstinacy. The deputy was worsening it by forcing the issue. He had the student psychologically cornered and surrounded. Now he was moving in, making the situation worse than it needed to be. The incident report again:
[The student] then advised that he was not getting up and nobody was going to get him out of the chair or the class room, Because [sic.] he did not want to go. I then advised [the student] that he did not havwe a choice in the matter, because he was under arrest for disruption of a school function.
The emphasis is again mine. There’s a new one on me. You can get arrested for not doing your work. For not following a teacher’s directions. For not going to “the office.” It’s a wonder I didn’t spend my entire elementary and middle school career in prison. Then again I was attending school in a more civilized place than this (by which I mean, of course, Lebanon, where Jesuits had a more effective weapon than Tasers and guns put together. It’s called persuasion and patience, a deadly combination if you’re an obstinate student like me. Jesuits generally had intelligence on their side, too.) What Deputy Scott Vedder promised, he fulfilled. It got worse:
At that time I attempted to physically remove him from the desk with an escort technique of the right arm. [The student] immediately pulled his arm away and tensed up the muscles in his upper body resisting my attempt to remove him from the chair. I advised him that if he did not comply I would deploy my Taser.
An extremely important detail here: the deputy made his first threat of using the Taser before the student had acted violently. The school board and I suspect the majority of the public would—because of the way the sheriff’s office conveyed the story—subsequently be under the impression that the Taser was used because the student struck the deputy. Not so. The deputy was ready to use the Taser whether or not the student was going to lift a hand to him, and makes that clear in the record.
He again pulled his arm away from me, looked directly at me and pulled his drew his [sic.] left hand back. [The student] then struck me in the left check with the palm of his left hand as I attempted to move out of his reach.
At the school board meeting on Tuesday, the deputy’s supervisor, Zane Kelly, exaggerated the situation just as he had exaggerated it when describing it to the press by saying that the student “struck my deputy with a closed fist.” The incident report is clear: the deputy was struck “with the palm of [the student’s] left hand.” So it goes: not only do the authorities — school and police — needlessly escalate a situation, but the perceived gravity of the incident is needlessly escalated as it is subsequently described, and in a way that unequivocally demarcates victim from officer: the victim is a demon out of control; the officer is a hero who had no choice, and followed all protocols. They call these here, proudly, “the matrix of force.” Here it is in action:
At that time I disengaged from [the student] and drew my M26 Taser emitting the laser aiming function onto his chest and advised him several times to get down on the ground or I would deploy the Taser [sic.] [The student] refused to comply so I then deployed the Taser by pulling the trigger one time for a five second cycle. [That’s 50,000 volts for five seconds, pronged into the student’s skin.] [The student] then rolled off of the chair onto the ground. [The student] then complied with all of my commands and I was able to secure him without further incident.
If irony could speak. A important bit of history: Two years ago when the new sheriff was elected (Don Fleming who, incidentally, had been a police chief in a New Jersey Meadowlands town much like the one portrayed in “Copland”) he immediately talked about arming his school cops with Tasers. The school board discussed it and rejected the idea. The sheriff said he’d comply. He was even quoted to that effect in the papers. Obviously, he didn’t. The school board met on Tuesday. The sense before the meeting was that a clear policy would be drawn up banning Tasers from schools. Not so fast. The board prevaricated. The board attorney advised against a policy, otherwise the school board would be liable should a student be hurt in an incident where, say, a gun was used where a Taser might have done better. So goes the twisted logic of agencies more fearful of lawsuits than protective of their students. No one seemingly condemned the use of the Taser outright. No one seemed, as they should have been, outraged. Doubt was getting more than its benefit. It was sprinkling the whitewash. So the best they could settle on was a workshop to discuss the matter further. Zane Kelly, the school cops’ supervisor, even used the word “proud” when describing his deputy’s reaction after the deputy was allegedly “struck.” Because, Kelly said, the deputy backed up, composed himself, and ordered the student to comply.
Then he fired.
And we wonder why we’re living in such violent times. And we wonder why, when stories like this make it into the press, the reaction by the general public is revoltingly approving of the use of force under those false rationales that even the local superintendent and cops are quick to use: better a Taser than a gun. As if those were the only two options. As if we have become so barbaric in our algorithms of law and order that the only two variables in the formula have to be force and order. And all this because a 16-year-old boy, a special education student, was acting out. It reminds me of another recent incident in the Daytona Beach area a couple of weeks back that began with a speeding car, was followed by a high-speed chase, and ended with thirty cops’ bullets fired at the car. The two occupants somehow survived, though they were wounded. And the cops didn’t even know if the person on the passenger side was a kidnapping victim or worse. But they fired. What triggered the folly it in the student’s case, and who’s at fault for letting the student escalate to the point where a cop was in the classroom instead of a trained counselor, a conflict-resolution specialist, even a couple of medics for that matter? (The medics turned up later, post-zapping.)
The Palm Coast high school student is 275 pounds and 6 or 6-1. His size is used repeatedly as further justification that he could have been trouble. The more reason to invoke conflict-resolution techniques. His size, his age, his status as a special education student are all irrelevant in the end: Tasering a student in his school, in his classroom, a student who was causing no worse harm than upsetting, loudly and maybe aggravatingly, a day’s routine, is a greater crime than anything the student could have been doing.
A couple of other details about the incident. The student is black. To my knowledge, every individual involved in his disciplining and cornering was white, even though the school has a black dean and a black assistant principal. Maybe color is irrelevant in this case. Maybe it isn’t. It certainly shouldn’t be ignored. Neither should this: The student’s father died a violent death some years ago. And Tuesday, while the school board discussed his case in a cakewalk of prevarications, the student turned 17. Happy birthday. Oh, and this week is “Disability Awareness Week” at Flagler Palm Coast High School, “in order to create more compassion for those with disabilities.” Great job.
- No Tasers in schools [Daytona Beach News-Journal editorial]
- A public forum where the Taser matter is debated. Brace yourself. Fox News language ahead.
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Solomon P. Ortiz: The Obama campaign was "bullying" him out of the page he built.
Threats to affect & harm one's livelihood so as to censor free speech>.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Kenedeno's Texas Monthly: B.A.C.A.L.A.: Velacrat is making friends with the Federal Entrapment gang and sycophants up to the ones he believes will elevate his Rose
TLR?? ..................................three little bitty letters;
nah, I wouldnt worry bout em.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
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