Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Houston jail staff mum on woman's death

"A woman serving a short sentence in a Houston, Texas, jail for possession of marijuana died in custody over the weekend, and officers are not saying how or why.

The 29-year-old, identified as Theresa Anthony, had expected to spend just two and a half weeks behind bars in the Harris County lockup. On Saturday, Cynthia Prude, Theresa’s mother, received a phone call from the jail’s Chaplain informing her that her daughter was dead."

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Sickest story of the day: Cops of the '68 Dem convention set to celebrate their own brutality, whitewash history

I suppose the police at the 08 Twin Cities RNC might want to join Hell.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Chris Hedges: The American Empire is Bankrupt

The American Empire Is Bankrupt

By Chris Hedges

June 15, 2009 "Truthdig" --- This week marks the end of the dollar’s reign as the world’s reserve currency. It marks the start of a terrible period of economic and political decline in the United States. And it signals the last gasp of the American imperium. That’s over. It is not coming back. And what is to come will be very, very painful.

Barack Obama, and the criminal class on Wall Street, aided by a corporate media that continues to peddle fatuous gossip and trash talk as news while we endure the greatest economic crisis in our history, may have fooled us, but the rest of the world knows we are bankrupt. And these nations are damned if they are going to continue to prop up an inflated dollar and sustain the massive federal budget deficits, swollen to over $2 trillion, which fund America’s imperial expansion in Eurasia and our system of casino capitalism. They have us by the throat. They are about to squeeze.

There are meetings being held Monday and Tuesday in Yekaterinburg, Russia, (formerly Sverdlovsk) among Chinese President Hu Jintao, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and other top officials of the six-nation Shanghai Cooperation Organization. The United States, which asked to attend, was denied admittance. Watch what happens there carefully. The gathering is, in the words of economist Michael Hudson, “the most important meeting of the 21st century so far.”

It is the first formal step by our major trading partners to replace the dollar as the world’s reserve currency. If they succeed, the dollar will dramatically plummet in value, the cost of imports, including oil, will skyrocket, interest rates will climb and jobs will hemorrhage at a rate that will make the last few months look like boom times. State and federal services will be reduced or shut down for lack of funds. The United States will begin to resemble the Weimar Republic or Zimbabwe. Obama, endowed by many with the qualities of a savior, will suddenly look pitiful, inept and weak. And the rage that has kindled a handful of shootings and hate crimes in the past few weeks will engulf vast segments of a disenfranchised and bewildered working and middle class. The people of this class will demand vengeance, radical change, order and moral renewal, which an array of proto-fascists, from the Christian right to the goons who disseminate hate talk on Fox News, will assure the country they will impose.

I called Hudson, who has an article in Monday’s Financial Times called “The Yekaterinburg Turning Point: De-Dollarization and the Ending of America’s Financial-Military Hegemony.” “Yekaterinburg,” Hudson writes, “may become known not only as the death place of the czars but of the American empire as well.” His article is worth reading, along with John Lanchester’s disturbing exposé of the world’s banking system, titled “It’s Finished,” which appeared in the May 28 issue of the London Review of Books.

“This means the end of the dollar,” Hudson told me. “It means China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Iran are forming an official financial and military area to get America out of Eurasia. The balance-of-payments deficit is mainly military in nature. Half of America’s discretionary spending is military. The deficit ends up in the hands of foreign banks, central banks. They don’t have any choice but to recycle the money to buy U.S. government debt. The Asian countries have been financing their own military encirclement. They have been forced to accept dollars that have no chance of being repaid. They are paying for America’s military aggression against them. They want to get rid of this.”

China, as Hudson points out, has already struck bilateral trade deals with Brazil and Malaysia to denominate their trade in China’s yuan rather than the dollar, pound or euro. Russia promises to begin trading in the ruble and local currencies. The governor of China’s central bank has openly called for the abandonment of the dollar as reserve currency, suggesting in its place the use of the International Monetary Fund’s Special Drawing Rights. What the new system will be remains unclear, but the flight from the dollar has clearly begun. The goal, in the words of the Russian president, is to build a “multipolar world order” which will break the economic and, by extension, military domination by the United States. China is frantically spending its dollar reserves to buy factories and property around the globe so it can unload its U.S. currency. This is why Aluminum Corp. of China made so many major concessions in the failed attempt to salvage its $19.5 billion alliance with the Rio Tinto mining concern in Australia. It desperately needs to shed its dollars.

“China is trying to get rid of all the dollars they can in a trash-for-resource deal,” Hudson said. “They will give the dollars to countries willing to sell off their resources since America refuses to sell any of its high-tech industries, even Unocal, to the yellow peril. It realizes these dollars are going to be worthless pretty quickly.”

The architects of this new global exchange realize that if they break the dollar they also break America’s military domination. Our military spending cannot be sustained without this cycle of heavy borrowing. The official U.S. defense budget for fiscal year 2008 is $623 billion, before we add on things like nuclear research. The next closest national military budget is China’s, at $65 billion, according to the Central Intelligence Agency.

There are three categories of the balance-of-payment deficits. America imports more than it exports. This is trade. Wall Street and American corporations buy up foreign companies. This is capital movement. The third and most important balance-of-payment deficit for the past 50 years has been Pentagon spending abroad. It is primarily military spending that has been responsible for the balance-of-payments deficit for the last five decades. Look at table five in the Balance of Payments Report, published in the Survey of Current Business quarterly, and check under military spending. There you can see the deficit.

To fund our permanent war economy, we have been flooding the world with dollars. The foreign recipients turn the dollars over to their central banks for local currency. The central banks then have a problem. If a central bank does not spend the money in the United States then the exchange rate against the dollar will go up. This will penalize exporters. This has allowed America to print money without restraint to buy imports and foreign companies, fund our military expansion and ensure that foreign nations like China continue to buy our treasury bonds. This cycle appears now to be over. Once the dollar cannot flood central banks and no one buys our treasury bonds, our empire collapses. The profligate spending on the military, some $1 trillion when everything is counted, will be unsustainable.

“We will have to finance our own military spending,” Hudson warned, “and the only way to do this will be to sharply cut back wage rates. The class war is back in business. Wall Street understands that. This is why it had Bush and Obama give it $10 trillion in a huge rip-off so it can have enough money to survive.”

The desperate effort to borrow our way out of financial collapse has promoted a level of state intervention unseen since World War II. It has also led us into uncharted territory.

“We have in effect had to declare war to get us out of the hole created by our economic system,” Lanchester wrote in the London Review of Books. “There is no model or precedent for this, and no way to argue that it’s all right really, because under such-and-such a model of capitalism ... there is no such model. It isn’t supposed to work like this, and there is no road-map for what’s happened.”

The cost of daily living, from buying food to getting medical care, will become difficult for all but a few as the dollar plunges. States and cities will see their pension funds drained and finally shut down. The government will be forced to sell off infrastructure, including roads and transport, to private corporations. We will be increasingly charged by privatized utilities—think Enron—for what was once regulated and subsidized. Commercial and private real estate will be worth less than half its current value. The negative equity that already plagues 25 percent of American homes will expand to include nearly all property owners. It will be difficult to borrow and impossible to sell real estate unless we accept massive losses. There will be block after block of empty stores and boarded-up houses. Foreclosures will be epidemic. There will be long lines at soup kitchens and many, many homeless. Our corporate-controlled media, already banal and trivial, will work overtime to anesthetize us with useless gossip, spectacles, sex, gratuitous violence, fear and tawdry junk politics. America will be composed of a large dispossessed underclass and a tiny empowered oligarchy that will run a ruthless and brutal system of neo-feudalism from secure compounds. Those who resist will be silenced, many by force. We will pay a terrible price, and we will pay this price soon, for the gross malfeasance of our power elite.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Pres. Obama vs. Prof. John Henrick Clarke


President Barrack Hussein Obama Vs Professor John Henrik Clarke

By Bro. Sadiki Ojore Olugbala (Shepard P. McDaniel)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The United States President Barrack Hussein Obama Said:

"The Palestinians must abandon violence. Resistance through violence and killing is wrong and does not succeed. For centuries, Black people in America suffered the lash of the whip as slaves and the humiliation of segregation. But it was not violence that won full and equal rights. It was peaceful and determined insistence upon the ideals at the center of America's founding. This same story can be told by people from South Africa to South Asia; from Eastern Europe to Indonesia. It's a story with a dead end. Violence is not how moral authority is claimed; that is how it is surrendered."

Dr. John Henrik Clarke, Professor Emeritus Of African History Said:

"Ours has been a continuous struggle, starting with the capture, the middle passage, slave revolts and each successive generation of revolutionaries. The Black freedom fighters who resisted militarily in the 1960s, 70's and 80s follow in the tradition of Harriet Tubman, Denmark Vessey, Nat Turner, and Malcolm X. Their struggle - our struggle - is similar to that of other peoples in the world striving for human rights and self-determination. Part of our task now, is to have international Law and the international community recognize and protect the just struggle of Black Freedom Fighters within the United States of America."

With the above June 4, 2009 statement that was ironically given on African soil; Contrary to western media, Egypt is not a part of the "middle east"...............................

This so called "first African-American" President of the United States, has now "officially" become a complete sellout and an embarrassing insult to those Afrikan ancestors who willingly gave their lives in armed struggle against the tyranny of Chattel Slavery, European Colonialism, Genocidal Imperialism, Racist Apartheid, Jim Crow Segregation, and Fascist Police State Terrorism.

Fortunately his futile attempts to change history for the benefit of his European political masters will ultimately prove to be the only "story with a dead end" because "Truth Crushed To The Earth, Will Always Rise"

History has repeatedly proven that successful peace negotiations with the oppressor; can never taken place without a clear and present military consequence from the oppressed. Even Gandhi had an armed force waiting in the wings, to deal with the British military which he himself had once served for as a murderer of African peoples.

Just to name a few........Did this brilliant & educated "black" President ever learn or even study about the just armed struggles of Candice, Nzinga, Sundiata, The Mahdi, The Zulu, The Ashante, The Mau Mau, The Amistad, Palmares, The Maroons, Nat Turner, Gabriel Prosser, Denmark Vessey, The New Orleans Rebellion, The New York Rebellion, Rosewood, East St. Louis, Fort Pillow, Camp Logan, Cabral, Algeria, Cuba, Haiti, Mozambique, Angola, SWAPO, Vietnam, China, The French Revolution; The Russian Revolution and/or The American Revolution that he erroneously quotes in his statement as being "a peaceful founding ideal"

I guess that the Indigenous armed resistance by Native warriors like Cochise, Sitting Bull & Geronimo should also have been replaced by the peaceful and total genocide of all so-called Native Americans.

I for one agree with Dr. Clarke's above 1990s message from the grave; as well as the countless of other Black warriors who would refuse to stand by and watch their children or loved ones be murdered the oppressor; without a just and equal response.

Media just now covering neo-nazis in US military

The US military has ALWAYS had a eugenic, genocidal approach towards non western, non white cultures, nations and peoples. That NeoNazis and other violent racists find safe harbor and encouragement in the military should surprise no one with an IQ above 90. Our military and police departments fail at providing equal justice under the law precisely due to the overall racist thrust of our military endeavors, despite the fact that these policies are carried out by an armed forces that is more that one half Black, Latino, Native American and Asian.

Cheney wants an attack on America: Leon Panetta

Despite his denials, you know that cheney and his blackwater buddies and their lackeys in the media will, I believe, instigate another false flag event.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Domestic terrorism alive and kicking

REAR ADMIRAL John G. Crommelin, USN, said this about James von Brunn:
"It is my conviction that James von Brunn deserves the gratitude and assistance of every White Christian citizen of these United States."

From the website of domestic terrorist James von Brunn, the gunman who murdered a guard on the National Mall at the National Holocaust Museum.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Communities United Against Police Brutality -- Email news

Communities United Against Police Brutality
June 9, 2009

Federal Appeals Court Hearing
False Reporting Lawsuit
Wednesday, June 10, 8:30 a.m.
Federal Court, 316 Robert St, St. Paul
Three years ago, the state legislature passed a terrible law criminalizing the "false" reporting of police brutality. So far, it's been used against people who reported incidents of sexual assault by police, even when there was biological proof that their complaints were true. In other words, this law allows cops--the same ones you're complaining about--to use the criminal justice system against you if you dare to complain. The law goes even further: it states that if you "cause to be reported" to a law enforcement officer, you could be prosecuted. That means this law applies to reporters, lawyers and others who tell the stories of others who have been brutalized. Clearly this is meant to chill free speech and criticism of public officials and provides yet another barrier to meaningful oversight of the cops. We sued the state of Minnesota over this law. Plaintiffs include this editor (as someone who reports on police brutality incidents in this newsletter and is an officer of CUAPB), two journalists who cover the police brutality beat (that would be Lydia Howell and myself, Rashard Zanders), a person who was charged under this law after being sexually assaulted by cops, and a lawyer who litigates police brutality cases. Despite the fact that a nearly identical law was overturned in California, a freedom-hating federal judge ruled against us, essentially saying that if we hadn't been charged yet we can't sue but if we have been charged we should "seek justice" by fighting against the charges in court. This is an outrageous ruling as no one is required to defend against civil rights violations in criminal court but also because it doesn't address the fact that the potential for charges has a chilling effect on free speech long before someone is prosecuted. This hearing on Wednesday is our federal appeal before a panel of three judges. Federal appeals are fairly rare occurrences and should provide some fascinating court watching. The hearing is short--we get only 15 minutes of oral argument--so please be on time.

Help set up and staff our booth at the
Annual Juneteenth Celebration
Sunday, June 14th
Boom Island, 724 Sibley St NE, Minneapolis
Juneteenth is a celebration of the unofficial end of slavery, some two years after Lincoln's emancipation proclamation when word finally reached Galveston, Texas on June 19, 1865. This date is recognized across the US as African American liberation day. One of the largest annual celebrations is here in Minneapolis and we have a wildly popular booth every year. It you can dedicate a few hours to help us with the booth, you'll have fun, meet lots of cool people, and your efforts will really be appreciated. Set up is early--we'll be meeting at Walker Church at 7:00 a.m. to load up and car pool to Boom Island. The festival itself runs 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and we'll need help staffing the booth and tearing down afterwards. If you can help, please reply to this email to let us know or just show up on Sunday either at Walker in the morning or at the booth during the festival. This year we will focus on stolen lives around the state as well as the RNC 8 case.

Public Hearing on Brutality and Misconduct by Minneapolis Police
Monday, June 15 6:00 p.m.
Minneapolis Urban League, 2100 Plymouth Avenue
It has become apparent that Minneapolis police are out of control. There have been multiple killings of community members in outrageous circumstances over the last few years. Just in the last few months, calls to our hotline have shot up sharply and are filled with horrific tales of abuse. Between the defanging of the Minneapolis civilian review authority, the abuses of the gang strike task force and the utter lack of willingness on the part of the mayor and city council to hold this police force accountable, local control of the police no longer seems possible. We are gathering testimony for the purpose of seeking federal receivership of the Minneapolis police department. Come and share your story with the community for the purpose of seeking justice.

TruthToTell Three-Part Radio Series: Cop Culture - Fear and Loathing in the Streets
Wednesdays June 10--17--24, 11:00 a.m.
KFAI Radio 90.3FM-Minneapolis/106.7FM Saint Paul and STREAMING at <>
TruthToTell examines the dark and isolated world of local police culture and the nature of law enforcement in general. •Why has this paramilitary subset of civil society grown so insular, more secretive and more rageful and violent? •How can we address the increasing federal conscription of local law enforcement agencies to violently put down legitimate political dissent – while stoking the deepening paranoia over those who disagree with increasingly rightwing and racist policing? •Why are we seeing more and more deception in police reports, shredding of documents, disappearing evidence and confiscated money? •Why can’t we convict renegade cops and redress their abuses? •Is there or has there ever been a bright line between some officers and the alleged offenders they arrest and charge? •Where is accountability in law enforcement? •Is it recoverable? Cops don’t live in the places they patrol anymore. What role has that played in the dissociation between police and the people they "protect?" TTT's ANDY DRISCOLL and LYNNELL MICKELSEN talk with current and former local and federal law enforcement, defense community, critics, policymakers, residents and reporters about what we can do to change these occupying armies back to community policing. Join us for this three-part series.
All white, rural jury rules that cop was in fear for his life
Despite significant evidence of police racism and misconduct, an all-white rural jury ruled that Minneapolis cop Jason Andersen was likely in fear for his life. The way jury instructions were set up, this allowed them to block the Lee family from receiving any justice in the case. The instructions were scripted into a series of questions so that a yes answer would mean that the jury would stop, not go on to the next question and would be ruling in favor of Andersen. The first question was "under a 'reasonable police officer' standard, knowing that police have to make split-second decisions, do you believe Officer Andersen was in fear for his life?" Further down the series of questions was whether deadly force was justified. Nowhere in the list of questions was the issue of the throw down gun mentioned.

Of course, just answering yes to that first question meant that jurors had to ignore the fact that Andersen was running AT Fong Lee the entire time and that he moved closer to Lee with each gunshot. It wasn't hard for them, after the judge encouraged them to draw on their (white) life experiences in deciding. Few whites have life experiences that are comparable to what people of color deal with at the hands of police.

Answering yes to that first question meant that jurors never had to deal with the question of the throw down gun. They could ignore mountains of evidence--not to mention an absolutely contorted story by the MPD--about a gun being on the scene that had been in police custody until the shooting. They could disregard the fact that while Fong Lee had defensive wounds through both hands and both hands were covered in blood the gun cops claimed he was holding had no blood, sweat, fingerprints, fibers, DNA or anything else tying it to Fong Lee. The jurors never had to consider that.

Jurors sat through five days of testimony in which witnesses who had never met Lee testified to seeing him cornered and heard him let out a blood-curdling scream before Andersen opened fire, shooting him in the back and buttocks four times. Once Fong fell to the ground, Anderson stood over him and shot him five more times. Multiple witnesses testified that Andersen never told Lee to drop a gun or anything like that. Only one witness--a woman well known to Minneapolis cops and often referred to by them by first name--testified that she heard Anderson say "put down the gun." She was supposedly running in and out of her house and rounding up her children while this was happening. Her testimony was just not credible.

Federal Judge Paul Magnuson, well known for being a system man, played a significant role in propping up the MPD. He ruled that scurrilous rumors about Fong Lee being a gang member (not backed by any evidence) could be brought in but he kept out actual documented complaints about racist comments against Asians made by Andersen. And then, of course, there were those jury instructions which were meant to ensure an unfavorable outcome for the Lee family. To add insult to injury, after the Lee family had spent long hours over two days waiting in the courthouse for a verdict, the judge instructed the family that they should take a lunch break. As soon as the family was away from the courthouse, he brought the jury in to read the verdict into the record. The family learned of the verdict from a reporter.

Community outrage over this verdict led to a huge turnout at an emergency rally held Saturday, May 30th at University and Marion in St. Paul. On only a few hours notice, hundreds came out to support the Lee family as they prepare to file an appeal. The general sentiment of the community was apparent at this rally as most cars driving by honked their horns while drivers and passengers yelled messages of support. Broad segments of the community, including Latinos, Somalis, African Americans and others by the hundreds stood with the Hmong community to demand justice.

Thank you for standing with this family. As this case proceeds to appeal, we will keep you apprised of further developments.
Note: To this list, we would add the Quincy Smith, Fong Lee, Ahmed Gulad cases and others in which unarmed people of color were slain by cops right here in the Twin Cities. Just as in the Fong Lee case, a throwdown gun was used to justify the killing of Bernard Monroe.

Probing Bias Behind The Badge: Louisiana shooting among 4 similar cases across U.S.
By Howard Witt | Tribune Newspapers March 14, 2009

HOMER, La. - ­ On the last afternoon of his life, Bernard Monroe was hosting a cookout for family and friends in front of his dilapidated home on Adams Street in this small northern Louisiana town.

Throat cancer had robbed the 73-year-old retired electric utility worker of his voice years ago, but family members said Monroe clearly was enjoying the commotion of his grandchildren and great-grandchildren cavorting around him in the yard.

Then the Homer police showed up, two white officers whose arrival caused the black family gathering to quickly fall silent.

Within moments, Monroe lay dead, shot by one of the officers as his family looked on.

Now the Louisiana State Police, the FBI and the U.S. Justice Department are swarming over this impoverished lumber town of 3,800, drawn by the allegations of numerous witnesses that police killed an unarmed, elderly black man without justification­and then moved a gun to make it look as though the man had been holding it.

"We are closely monitoring the events in Homer," said Donald Washington, the U.S. attorney for the Western District of Louisiana.

Yet the Feb. 20 Homer incident was not an isolated case. Across the U.S., in four recent cases, white police officers have been accused of unprovoked shootings of African-Americans in what civil rights leaders say are illustrations of the potentially deadly consequences of racial profiling by police.

In the mostly white Houston suburb of Bellaire, a 23-year-old black man sitting in his SUV in the driveway of his parents' home was shot and wounded on New Year's Eve by police who mistakenly believed he had stolen the vehicle. The case is under investigation.

In Oakland, a transit police officer has been charged with murder in the shooting of an unarmed black man in the back while he was restrained and lying face down on a train platform on Jan. 1.

In New Orleans, nine police officers are under investigation in the New Year's Day death of a black man who was struck by 14 bullets after an undercover team stopped his car. Police say the man, 22, raised a gun and fired at them, but his family disputes that.

"All the anecdotal information demonstrates that African-Americans are the most frequent victims of zealous, inappropriate police activity that often winds up in a shooting," said Reggie Shuford, an attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union.

"People here are afraid of the police," said Terry Willis, vice president of the Homer NAACP branch. "They harass black people, they stop people for no reason and rough them up without charging them with anything."

That is how it should be, responded Russell Mills, Homer's police chief ... "If I see three or four young black men walking down the street, I have to stop them and check their names," said Mills, who is white. "I want them to be afraid every time they see the police that they might get arrested."

The Homer police claim Monroe was holding a gun when he was shot but would not comment further.

A Wisconsin judge overturned the conviction of a man found in possession of a handgun and marijuana joints, finding that he did not voluntarily consent to a search of his car. The defendant, Malcolm J. Muller, initially refused consent, but later gave permission after officers had already started searching the vehicle. The Judge found that the initial illegal search tainted the defendant's subsequent waiver of his 4th amendment rights.

While this suspect was ultimately released, this case demonstrates the importance of standing your ground and NEVER consenting to a search. (And, of course, NEVER carrying a gun and illegal drugs in your vehicle.)

Police will often conduct a search after consent is denied, hoping that they'll be able to convince a judge that they had probable cause. If you give up and consent just because they've started searching, you risk legalizing an otherwise unreasonable search.

To paraphrase Winson Churchill, "Never, never, never, never give up your rights!"
By Thomas J. Prohaska

LOCKPORT ­ It is legally permissible for police to zap a suspect with a Taser to obtain a DNA sample, as long as it’s not done “maliciously, or to an excessive extent, or with resulting injury,” a county judge has ruled in the first case of its kind in New York State, and possibly the nation.

Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon Sperrazza decided that the DNA sample obtained Sept. 29 from Ryan S. Smith of Niagara Falls ­ which ties him to a shooting and a gas station robbery­ is legally valid and can be used at his trial.

Smith was handcuffed and sitting on the floor of Niagara Falls Police Headquarters when he was zapped with the 50,000- volt electronic stun gun after he insisted he would not give a DNA sample.

He already had given a sample, a swab of the inside of his cheek, without protest the previous month. But police sent it to the wrong lab, where it was opened and spoiled. Prosecutors who had obtained a court order for the first sample went back to Sperrazza, who signed another order without consulting the defense.

Defense lawyer Patrick M. Balkin denounced the ruling in an interview with The Buffalo News.

“They have now given the Niagara Falls police discretion to Taser anybody anytime they think it’s reasonable,” he asserted. “Her decision says you can enforce a court order by force. If you extrapolate that, we no longer have to have child support hearings; you can just Taser the parent.”

A police officer said that when Smith was ordered by officers to give his DNA, he adamantly refused.

“I ain’t giving up my DNA again. I already gave it up once. I’ll sit in jail. I ain’t giving it up. You’re going to have to Tase me,” the officer’s report stated.

The officer wrote that he then applied the stun gun to Smith’s left shoulder, a “drive stun” that is regarded as less painful than shooting electric prongs into a person, which is the usual Taser approach. Smith then consented to the sample, and he was arrested on a contempt of court charge.

In her ruling, Sperrazza cited numerous legal precedents and the state’s Criminal Procedure Law, allowing the use of reasonable force to carry out a court order.

Although there are no New York cases specifically dealing with using a Taser to accomplish that, the judge did find a Wyoming case where a court ruled it was legal to use a Taser to force a suspect to open his hand for a search.

Balkin and other lawyers familiar with the case say they know of no other case in the country in which a Taser was used to gather DNA.

The decision Wednesday in Niagara County stunned Balkin, who admitted in court that he hadn’t been carrying out trial preparation, such as seeking an expert to review the DNA test results.

“It’s my fault,” Balkin told Sperrazza. “I truly thought it was going to be suppressed.”

Balkin thought a victory on the Taser issue would lead to the dismissal of the 24-count indictment against Smith, 21, of Grove Avenue.

Sperrazza granted a postponement of Smith’s trial to Aug. 10.

Smith is charged with shooting a man in the groin July 27, 2006, after allegedly invading his ex-girlfriend’s home, tying up her two children and forcing the woman to take him to the shooting victim’s home.

He is also accused of taking part in the Dec. 24, 2006, armed robbery of a Sunoco station in Niagara Falls. A codefendant in the robbery, Christopher T. Walker Jr., now 21, pleaded guilty and is serving a 10-year state prison sentence.

DNA was found on a can of pop taken from Smith’s ex-girlfriend’s refrigerator and on a glove dropped at the gas station. It matched a sample he had to give after a previous assault conviction, and prosecutors sought another sample from Smith to confirm the findings.

“Our case is mostly DNA,” Deputy District Attorney Doreen M. Hoffmann said.

She also said she didn’t agree with Balkin that suppressing the DNA sample would have led to the dismissal of the indictment.

There is a surveillance video of the gas station robbery, Hoffmann revealed in court.

Balkin said he also was most concerned about Sperrazza’s reasoning that she didn’t have to go through a courtroom procedure for the second DNA sample because Smith had not objected to the first one.

“The court waived my client’s due process,” the defense lawyer said.

Testimony at a hearing last month partially contradicted the incident report written by Officer George McDonell, who used the Taser on Smith.

Sperrazza wrote in her ruling, based on police testimony, that when Smith refused to give another sample, Detective Lt. William Thomson phoned Hoffmann about it, and Hoffmann “instructed him that they could use the minimum force necessary to obtain the sample.”

But McDonell wrote in his report, “It was relayed that officers could use any means necessary to secure the sample.”

Sperrazza said the police should have arrested Smith first and brought him to court to be warned about the penalties for noncompliance with a court order.

McDonell testified that he used the Taser for one to two seconds. Another officer testified that the data readout on the Taser showed it was on for as long as four seconds.

Court papers filed by Smith’s civil attorney, Christopher O’Brien, assert that Smith was zapped three times and lost consciousness. McDonell’s report says, “Suspect complained of no injury and none was observed.”
The editorial below refers to the cop on cop killing of Black officer Omar Edwards by two white colleagues while he was pursuing a car theft suspect. See . This harkens back to the shooting of Minneapolis police officer Duy Ngo by white cop Charles Storlie, who had previously killed Black teenager Tycel Nelson.

You never read this headline: 'Black cop shoots white cop'
Errol Louis
Friday, May 29th 2009, 10:29 PM

Many will assume that the killing of Officer Omar Edwards was the result of a tragic but honest mistake, an accident with no malice or racial bias at work.

That would be a reasonable conclusion - and a dead wrong one.

There is nothing reasonable about the fact we never see black or Latino cops accidentally gunning down white undercover officers, but the reverse has been true in several high-profile cases.

It's true that Edwards may have violated Patrol Guide procedures by wheeling around with a weapon in his hand instead of instantly freezing and dropping his gun when ordered to do so.

The officers who killed Edwards may have violated policy, too. We don't know what kind of warning was shouted, and the fatal bullet reportedly entered Edwards' back, raising questions about why and when he was seen as a deadly threat.

For now, we must leave it to departmental investigators and the courts to sort out what happened.

But even before the evidence is in, what every New Yorker can do is acknowledge - and battle - the malicious myth that most black men are up to no good and likely to commit criminal violence.

It's a mindset that leads the public to believe nuts and fraudsters - most recently, Bonnie Sweeten of Florida, who set off a national search by falsely telling FBI agents she and her daughter had been kidnapped by two black men in a Cadillac.

The story wasn't true - and Sweeten faces criminal charges for lying - but America fell for it hook, line and sinker, launching national Amber alerts.

In a similar case, a campaign worker named Ashley Todd last year falsely claimed a 6-foot-4 black man carved a "B" (for Barack Obama) into her cheek. That, too, was a lie.

And so was the 1994 tale spun by Susan Smith of South Carolina, who said a black bogeyman carjacked her two sons - who, it turned out, had died when Smith killed her children by rolling her car into a lake.

This isn't South Carolina or Pittsburgh or Florida: We New Yorkers like to pride ourselves on being tolerant and sophisticated. But we, too, are susceptible to the bias trap.

One news headline described Edwards as "mistaken for a thug" - a reminder of the slurs cops throw around on the job and off. People get classified as thugs, perps, skells, punks and worse.

An onslaught of gangsta rap and other cultural garbage bolsters the bias. We pay a heavy price by letting racist imagery, words and accusations slosh around society unchecked and unchallenged.

In the tense, split-second needed to separate a cop from a crook on a dark street, those myths may have cost a good man his life.
Communities United Against Police Brutality
3100 16th Avenue S
Minneapolis, MN 55407
Hotline 612-874-STOP (7867)
Meetings: Every Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Walker Church, 3104 16th Avenue South