Another Day, Another Video, Another Response

Ever have those days when you wish you could just put everything on pause and catch up? I have them all the time and I have a feeling I know a few others who are feeling the same thing right about now. While the news of this new LAPD beating video is still being hotly discussed, along comes another one from last year. This newer, yet older one shows an officer spray a transient with pepper spray after he’s been handcuffed and put into the patrol car. (Side note – anyone who has ever been around that stuff knows this is a bad idea if the officer is planning on getting in the car himself at some point – yikes!) Apparently that officer no longer works for the department, yet Chief Bratton was much quicker to post a reply that addresses both of these videos.

According to the Chief’s post the newer,old incident was already investigated and the District Attorney’s review found no wrongdoing or use of excessive force. That said Chief Bratton says he’s reviewing the files and video himself but legally can not speak about it until after further judgments are made. He gives examples of several specific rulings and says:

“I reference these decisions and some of their language to reinforce that I cannot make snap judgments based solely on videos or portions of videos. I must engage in a comprehensive and usually frustratingly long, multiple investigative process that is strictly governed by the laws I have referenced; and in the case of the LAPD, by the Federal Consent Decree.

There is no government agency in America that has more policies, procedures, guidelines, and independent oversight with respect to use of force than the LAPD. Our investigative process with all its limitations has been shaped by events and mistakes of the past and corrected to shape the actions of the present and future.”

This is understandable and I’ve personally been a little surprised at the calls for an instant reaction. Have people never heard of red tape? The last line of his response is the most important in my eyes:

“We are a Department that is committed to going where the truth takes us, no matter how painful or disturbing that truth might be. I would support and encourage that the public and media be vigilant but also be mindful that we cannot rush to judgment, I will not, as you should not.”

More Metroblogging Posts About This Video
* A New LAPD Beating Video? – posted 11:11 AM on Nov. 08
* Update: FBI looks into the LAPD video – posted at 6:40 PM on Nov. 09
* The Video, the LAPD Blog, and how the two will relate – posted at 7:40 AM on Nov. 10
* Police Report and New LAPD Video Don’t Match Up – posted on Nov. 11
*Use Of Force – Explained on LAPD Blog – posted at 9:17 AM on Nov.13
* William Cardenas speaks out – posted at 8:22 AM on Nov.14