Sunday, October 25, 2009

Why I hate cops!

Let's face it.  Cops can be bullies.  The sort of personality that finds its Badass-way into policing often turns out to be the sort of personality that loves to exercise police power.  

I'll never forget the first revelation of this truism when as a young worker downtown I watched a police officer doing impromptu traffic detail decide that we drivers weren't proceeding the way he wanted us to down a narrow street--so, in addition to screaming at us to move this way or that--when I didn't move with the appropriate alacrity he pounded on the hood of my car.  I was stunned.  

Then there is this guy:

In Our Hometown there is a notorious cop, Jimmy Shootem.  Shootem has killed five criminal suspects over the years. The last Shootem victim being an unarmed bank robbery suspect that Shootem chased down the street and shot from the window of a civilian car, that Shootem commandeered in order to pursue this stupid bastard.  Amazingly, only 5 people have died at the hands of Shootem who's found reason to discharge his gun at another eleven suspects.  A local columnist for Your Hometown Newspaper had the termerity to suggest that just perhaps Shootem was a little excessive and the hue and cry nearly cost her, her job.  The columnist asked, what would you call someone who has killed 5 people over the years who was not a cop--she said a serial killer.  In Shootem's case, considering how many times he's missed suspects that he's shot at: I said, a bad shot.

In addition to being a menace to public safety, Shootem is also a bully.  He patrols an area of town just west of the downtown in a market district where hipsters are trying to rehab dilapidated storefronts.  Shootem likes to ticket cars that don't park perfectly in front of these businesses, and in the case of my client, a motor scooter business.   Shootem was issuing tickets ot the businessmen for "sidewalk obstruction" when customers parked their scooters and other vehicles on the double-wide sidewalk in front of the various stores.  My client protested the ticket he received and was arrested for "carrying a concealed weapon" when Shootem noticed a pair of "Leatherman multi-pliers" in a canvas case on this Motor Scooter Shop Owner's belt.  The pliers had a small utility knife folded up in the plier handle.  The arrest was recorded on a dashcam.  The retailer asked Shootem why he harassed business people saying to Shoooter, "if your Dad was a businessman trying to do business in this neighborhood would you give him a ticket..."  Shootem went nuts.  He told the business man to shut up and said, "How would you like it if I called your mother a whore?"

At least Shootem didn't kill the business man.  Fortunately for the Motor Scooter shop dealer the Judge who heard the case had seen enough of Officer Shootem over the years and threw the case out of court.   Still the arrest and prosecution lasted six months and cost this client endless time in the Halls of our Justice Palace.

But Shootem is a local hero.  In the minds of citizenry Jimmy Shootem is a bastion against lawlessness--forget innocent until proven guilty.  This insane bully gets away--well, let's leave it at manslaughter.  Jimmy Shootem has his own Facebook page (with lots of fans) and a Wikipedia entry.  Awesome!  And you thought popular fascism was dead in America, not a chance.  

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