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Jun. 16 2010 - 5:01 pm | 459 views | 0 recommendations | 4 comments

Seattle police officer punches 17 year old girl

This kind of thing doesn’t really fall into my bailiwick, but I think the video is worth passing along and commenting on. Plus, my sort of progressive libertarian streak makes stories like this something on which I feel compelled to comment.

In Seattle a couple of days ago, a police officer was video taped punching a 17 year old girl in the face for — wait for it — jaywalking,

Seattle police are investigating what they call an assault of an officer in South Seattle.However, a police officer is seen punching a 17-year-old girl in the face during the incident captured by a video camera on Monday.

According to Seattle police, the incident began when an officer spotted a man jaywalking in the 3100 block of Martin Luther King, Jr. Way S. at approximately 3:10 p.m. The man was some 15 feet away from a pedestrian overpass, police said.

The officer was talking to the man when he saw four young women jaywalk across the same street at the same spot. The officer asked the women to step over to his patrol car, but the women were being “verbally antagonistic toward the officer,” according to officials.

One of the women, later identified as a 19 year old, began to walk away from the scene despite the officer’s instructions, prompting the officer to walk over to her and escort her back to his patrol car.

The girl then “began to tense up her arm, and pull away from the officer while yelling at him,” investigators said. The officer told the girl to place her hands on his patrol car, but she refused. When the officer tried to grab hold of her, “she pulled away and twisted, breaking free of the officer’s grip several times,” the blotter report said.

When the officer tried to handcuff the girl, another girl, this one 17 years old, intervened and placed her hands on the officer’s arm, “causing the officer to believe she was attempting to physically affect the first subject’s escape,” police said.

The officer pushed back the second girl, but the girl came back at him. The officer then punched her, police said.

Firstly, it strikes me as more than a subtle stretch to call what was going on “officer abuse”.That just strikes me as blatant reverse victimization by Seattle police and an attempt to set the terms of the debate in a fashion that deflects the obvious unnecessary use of force against a 17 year old girl.

The women were being belligerent, there is no question there. But two things: 1.) police officers are supposed to be trained to deal with that sort of thing and 2.) I might get a touch belligerent if a police officer started to get physically aggressive with me over an incident of jaywalking.

And for good measure 3.) we’re talking about a 17 year old girl.

I mean, there was no way for the officer to know her age at the time of incident, but he clearly knew she was a young girl. It’s not like he was dealing with a 35 year old man.

You can check out the video of the incident for yourself:

Secondly, you can clearly see that this was not a case of the 17 year old grabbing the officer and the officer swinging to break her hold and punching her in the course of doing so. At about the 30 second mark, the officer breaks free of both women, turns and looks at the 17 year old, and then hauls off and punches her in the face.

In other words, while the officer was in the heat of the moment, he clearly thought about his possible avenues of recourse and decided that punching the girl in the face was his best option.

So there you have it folks: Wall Street nearly collapses the world economy and they have to follow stricter rules next time, BP is responsible for the worst oil spill in the country’s history and it will have to clean up, a black 17 year old girl and her friends jaywalk in Seattle and she gets punched in the face by a police officer.

God bless America.


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    About Me

    I'm a Canadian blogger who spends far too much time reading and writing about US politics. I've been involved in various forms of political organizing for the past decade, some of which has earned me recognition and other of which has earned me the title of "no good punk".

    I also blog at The League of Ordinary Gentlemen, the Commons, Beams and Struts, and The Washington Examiner's Opinion Zone.

    See my profile »
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    Contributor Since: March 2010
    Location:Calgary, Alberta