Filed under: Audio, Copblock, Copwatch, Corruption, Court, Free Concord, Free Press, International, Issues, Living Free, National, New Hampshire, News, Noncooperation, Outreach, Police, Politics, Question, Response, Robin Hood, Thuggery, Update, Victimless Crimes, Video
The 2013 Police Accountability Tour wrapped last Monday as Pete Eyre and myself parted ways at the Louis Armstrong International Airport. Carrying footage that has mostly completed uploading recently, Fr33manTVraw has seen a spike in recent views as what’s been captured on the tour is sorted for further editing. Much content will be submitted to CheshireTV for airing, and be additionally posted to the FreeConcordTV channel. One video from the tour has previously appeared on the AquaKeene channel, and check for more there from the tour as content airs on the controversial series AKPF #1 out of Cheshire county.
Embedded below is a playlist of my experiences with the TSA. First, going through the security checkpoint with two cameras running in NOLA, then wrapping with a brief exercise in filming the TSA from the public area of the airport after landing in Manchester. You can read an article from Pete covering the tour published to CopBlock last Friday. In my roughly five city addition to the tour, it was eye-opening to see how those portions of the world are changing and and how sheltered other areas can be from their issues. Expect text in addition to video content coming soon to the sources above. Keep cameras charged!
Filed under: Copblock, Copwatch, Court, Data, Free Concord, Free Press, Hypocrisy, Issues, National, News, Photos, Police, Politics, Question, Response, Sad, Thuggery, Video
A shocking trend of gang-related shootings plagued New Orleans following the hurricane infamous for destroying much of the city’s infrastructure. As national news media was reporting exaggerated claims of street-level violence occurring in understocked refuge centers, heavily armed and trained mobs were targeting and killings innocent civilians. Following the attempted murder of Donnel Herrington and the murder of Henry Glover on September 2, 2005, Danny Brumfield was killed with a shotgun blast to the back on September 3 near the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. The Danziger bridge shootings were perpetrated on September 4, resulting in the deaths of James Brissette and Ronald Madison, with four other victims suffering injury in the attack. Who was responsible for these mob killings?
It would be years before a critical inquiry into the senseless killings would occur, primarily sparked by intrigued journalists and eventually followed up by the United States department of justice through the federal bureau of investigation. Potentially more disturbing than what is known is what is not known. With reports of bodies being spotted throughout the city that appeared to be victims of gunshot wounds rather than storm-related injuries, there is no way to know exactly how many homicides occurred during the post-storm havoc. Survivors have cited numerous bodies buried beneath debris showing gunshot wounds in Algiers Point, an area which was not flooded after the rupture of the levees. In various journalistic reports, drunken neighbors in largely wealthy, european-american residential areas admit to operating armed patrols and firing on people who, “didn’t belong.” Read more
Filed under: Audio, Charity, Civil Disobedience, Copblock, Copwatch, Corruption, Court, Free Concord, Free Press, Introduction, Issues, Living Free, National, News, Noncooperation, Outreach, Photos, Police, Response, Thuggery, Victimless Crimes, Video
The Police Accountability Tour had the opportunity to meet with the creative individuals behind CopWatch of East Atlanta. Having been active in their area since the late aughts, the project established itself as a resource for the community, providing a phone number for people in need of a few individuals armed with cameras to reach out through. Following an experience-based set of collectively understood policies, CopWatch participants are also involved in other actions in the area, including Food Not Bombs.
Stemming from an incident in 2010, and complimented by a similar situation which occurred later, the Atlanta police department has now been specifically trained to permit videography and photography of themselves and their suspects and detainees from a reasonable distance. During the 2010 camera seizure, which helped shape CopWatch of East Atlanta’s policies as well as the police’s, a camera phone was taken from an activist by the police after multiple unlawful requests to terminate the recording. Eventually, the camera was wrestled away, and a revealing phone conversation with the property-seizing officer was documented and disseminated. The officer revealed that the person potentially videotaped being arrested may act as a confidential informant on an investigation. The camera phone would be returned on the condition that the police employee could be granted access to the footage and ensure its deletion. An audio recording of the telephone conversation would secure a $40,000 settlement for the group. Upon retrieving the footage, it was posted publicly in very damaged condition, possibly as a result of its poor handling in police custody, or through intentional sabotage. Since that time, CopWatch of East Atlanta has adopted policies to prevent the loss of objective documentation of a scene by working in groups, wearing uniforms, keeping distances between videographers, and observing numerous other safety precautions. Recently at the DeKalb County public library, the group offered to the public a know-your-rights training session. Read more
Filed under: Copblock, Copwatch, Corruption, Data, Free Concord, Free Press, Issues, National, News, Outreach, Police, Politics, Question, Sad, Thuggery, Victimless Crimes, Video
Fifty years ago, the population of Gary, Indiana reached its peak with nearly 180,000 residents. Infrastructure was being built on estimates that the area may soon be home to nearly a quarter million people. Founded around the turn of the century and designated as the home of the Gary Works steel plant, soon automation replaced human labor and demand for domestically produced steel decreased. As the number of employees of Gary Works declined, so did the economy and tax base of the city, as well as its population, which now hosts less than 80,000 residents. During that time, another legal phenomenon swept the nation, which only contributed to Gary’s woes. The United States experienced the proliferation of the war on drugs. These two factors led to Gary experiencing high crime and poverty rates, which continue to affect the city that resembles a ghost town more each year.
The failure of central planning has also negatively impacted the city. City hall grossly overestimates property values in an attempt to recoup the tax base lost to other towns and cities as residents fled. While houses and businesses sit abandoned and in shambles, back taxes are claimed owed on them despite their negative value. Travelling through the city full of crumbling structures, it would seem the obvious solution would be to allow the impoverished residents to homestead and reclaim the land and property which is underutilized. Yet police in Gary still work to combat squatting in structures deemed to have potential future value, if only someone would purchase and refurbish them. Read more
Filed under: Copblock, Copwatch, Corruption, Court, Free Concord, Free Press, Issues, National, News, Photos, Police, Thuggery, Update, Video
Earlier this week, Pete and Garret took a trip just north of the Police Accountability Tour stop in Chicago to followup on an incident in Skokie, Illinois that occurred this past Spring, but did not receive attention until earlier in October. On March 10, Cassandra Feuerstein of Chicago was arrested on a DUI charge in Skokie and was in the custody of the village’s police force when she sustained a serious injury to her face. Requiring reconstructive surgery, the installation of a titanium plate, and resulting in persistent numbness and vision problems, Cassandra sustained the injury as a result of being shoved face-first into a concrete bench by Skokie officer Michael Hart. Why was it that such a serious injury required seven months for there to be action taken?
Only after a civil suit was filed and the video of the incident released publicly was Michael Hart’s status with the department changed, as he was placed on desk duty. Following the video’s publication, there was public outcry for criminal charges to be filed, which they finally were approximately two weeks later. At that time, Hart was suspended, with pay, as the trial is pending.
The person responsible for prosecuting Hart is state’s attorney Anita Alvarez, who is infamous for both advocating the criminalization of video recording the police, as well as suggesting that three youths who had confessions coerced out of them and were exonerated for the rape and murder of a woman may have still been culpable despite DNA evidence tying the crime to a known serial murderer. One cannot expect a monopolistic service such as police and courts to police themselves, but it is clear from the rhetoric Alvarez and others involved employ that they cannot simply sweep the incident under the rug. Read more
Filed under: Charity, Cool, Copblock, Copwatch, Court, Free Concord, Free Press, International, Introduction, Issues, National, New Hampshire, News, Outreach, Photos, Police, Response, Robin Hood, Victimless Crimes, Video
Outside of the jurisdiction of the AKPF, Garret ventures about Chicago to meet the agents of the ACPF – Aqua Chicago Parking Force. In town as part of the 2013 Police Accountability Tour, Pete and Garret spent hours on the streets in search of authorities to film before stumbling upon a parking enforcer issuing citations just North of downtown. During the conversation about modern parking enforcement in the United State’s third largest metro, the concept of Robin Hooding is introduced. The reason for the city of Keene’s lawsuit against Robin Hooders did not have to be explained to Agent #734. “This city depends upon that revenue…That’s the reason why you’re getting sued, because this is revenue.” In fact, the recently retired uniform of Chicago’s parking enforcers included a reflective safety vest with large text reading REVENUE embroidered on the rear. It is refreshing to hear honesty up-front from the individuals tasked with revenue collection in the ACPF. Chi-Town officials were on the ball at preventing the Merry People from being able to perform saves in their streets, as they removed all coin-operated meters in favor of kiosks roughly two years ago. Despite the difficult one would face trying to comp the parking of others in the Windy City, Agent #734 parted Garret with, “Keep doing what you do, man!” Check out the special Aqua Chicago Parking Force feature embedded below to get a sampling of parking enforcement under the dominion of Rahm Emanuel.
Filed under: Audio, Copblock, Copwatch, Corruption, Court, Free Concord, Free Press, International, Issues, National, New Hampshire, News, Noncooperation, Outreach, Police, Politics, Response, Thuggery, Update, Victimless Crimes, Video
While Pete Eyre and I continue the 2013 Police Accountability Tour, updates from the changes at the Weare police department stream out of NH. The Concord Monitor has the story on WPD’s new police chief imported from New Haven, Connecticut, which was the subject of its own FBI raid in 2007. The Monitor story discusses some of the negative attention drawn to Weare police under the reign of previous administrations, wherein civilians were legally attacked and threatened with felonies for recording police. Multiple individuals have their own lawsuits against the department for the infringement on their right to document public officials.
Linked below is an update from myself and Pete produced shortly after touching down in Chicago, where our stay promises further adventures in accountability.
Filed under: Cool, Copblock, Copwatch, Corruption, Court, Data, Free Concord, Free Press, International, Introduction, Issues, Living Free, National, News, Outreach, Personal Freedom, Photos, Police, Response, Thuggery, Update, Victimless Crimes, Video
How many of us have been told by police employees that the reason they must take such aggressive actions is to “make it home to my family”? That mindset, according to Threat Management Center founder Dale Brown, is flawed. Instead, those tasked with protecting others – those who take a salary to do so, should have as their highest priority the safety of others.
Incentives matter. Police, as currently structured, will never provide protection, justice or be accountable. Dale Brown and his colleagues at Threat Management center are proving that these services are better supplied through consensual interactions.
- [website] Threat Management Center
The objective of our organization is to make the world safer by denying the opportunity for violence to take place. By using tactical psychology, tactical law, and tactical skills, we create conditions which, by design, are not conducive for violence. V.I.P.E.R.S. Threat Management emphasizes the use of deterrence, detection, and defense to achieve non-violent outcomes.
- [website] Police Accountability Tour
The Police Accountability Tour, on the road from mid-August until December, will maximize police accountability by facilitating connections and collaboration among those who know that badges don’t grant extra rights, and through skill sharing and the capturing and dissemination of relevant content. This tour will help further connect individuals involved with Cop Block, Cop Watch, and Peaceful Streets groups as well as all police-watching groups and people around the world, so we can together advance a reality free from institutionalized violence. Read more
Filed under: Copblock, Copwatch, Corruption, Data, Free Concord, Free Press, International, Issues, Living Free, National, News, Outreach, Photos, Police, Thuggery, Victimless Crimes, Video
On Sunday morning, a black Tahoe with IDEAS ARE BULLETPROOF and NO MASTERS NO SLAVES emblazoned on its sides, and COPBLOCK.ORG on its rear cruised out of Keene, New Hampshire, headed for the Motor City in Michigan. Piloting the truck, I was scheduled to pick up Pete Eyre from the airport that evening after the day’s ride West. Detroit is the sixth of nine cities being visited on the in-progress 2013 Police Accountability Tour. Pete and fellow videographer Jacob Crawford began the tour in Austin, Texas, at the Police Accountability Summit hosted by the Peaceful Streets Project. The tour continued in New York City before going global with an extended stop in Cape Town, South Africa. Returning to Jacob’s home town of Oakland, California, Pete continued solo on to Denver, Colorado before reaching our present location in Detroit.
Each city has its own unique issues with monopolist police services. Detroit is known for having a historically overzealous police force, which has been the subject of so many internal investigations that the US Department of Justice was tasked to oversee reformation efforts in the early aughts. Even with state and federal oversight of government mismanagement, the city is still plagued with some of the most violent neighborhoods in the nation, where many police officers refuse to patrol and 911 response times are disturbingly long, not uncommonly taking upwards of an hour. Read more
Filed under: Cool, Copblock, Copwatch, Corruption, Court, Free Concord, Free Press, International, Issues, Keenevention, Living Free, National, New Hampshire, News, Noncooperation, Outreach, Photos, Police, Robin Hood, Thuggery, Update, Victimless Crimes, Video
Garret Ean will soon join the nine-city, four-month Police Accountability Tour that aims to get folks on the ground better-connected, to share and facilitate the exchange of ideas and practices related to police accountability, and to ultimately erode the plague of police statism.
Garret is stepping-in for Jacob Crawford, who co-founded the tour with me a few months back based on discussions we had during the spring and while at PorcFest in June.
Jacob, a longtime Bay-area copwatcher who started WeCopwtach.org and who a decade ago made These Streets Are Watching, the first know your rights video using on the street (not dramatized) footage, needs to focus his attention on some police accountability efforts specific to the Bay. Read more