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Cops Not Guilty of Beating Homeless Man to Death

This story reflects the sad, appalling reality of the manifest injustice of our criminal “justice” system. Four cops beat a homeless man to death, on freaking video, and a jury finds two of them not guilty with almost no deliberation. Now those murderers can go back to being cops. Here’s the horrifying video, wherein the officers threaten to “fuck him up” while he is literally sitting on a curb doing nothing even remotely threatening or criminal.

They called two more officers, tased him, hit him in the face with a taser, beat the hell out of him with their batons and put him in a coma. The cops say he was resisting. I can’t imagine why. On the video you can hear him begging for his life, telling them he can’t breathe. These cops are murderers. They should be in prison for the rest of their lives.

Comments

  1. Alverant says

    I believe the jury acquitted because the victim was a mentally ill homeless person, someone they would avoid and are frightened of. Inside they’re probably happy one of “them” are gone. It’s the same thing we saw with Zimmerman, the victim wasn’t really human; just a threat that hasn’t done anything yet.

  2. colnago80 says

    Re Alverant @ #1

    Actually, Rodney King is a better example. Zimmerman was actually in some danger as he was in a fight with Martin and was getting the worst of it.

  3. says

    Zimmerman was actually in some danger as he was in a fight with Martin and was getting the worst of it.

    A fight he instigated by stalking Martin.

  4. kevinalexander says

    They called two more officers, tased him, hit him in the face with a taser, beat the hell out of him with their batons and put him in a coma.

    These homeless guys are always getting away with homelessness, well this is one who didn’t get away with it.

  5. marcus says

    Fucking pathetic. There is a possibility that the Feds will take up prosecution as a civil rights violation. There is also a civil suit pending.
    You can’t even beat some poor, defenseless, mentally ill, homeless person to death in the street without some bleeding heart whining about civil rights. What’s the world coming to?

    /sarcasm

  6. colnago80 says

    Re D. C. Wilson @ #4

    So if Martin had beaten Zimmerman to death, which was not outside the realm of possibility, that would have been AOK because the latter started it.

  7. Alverant says

    @colnago80 Martin wasn’t doing anything before Zimmerman decided he was guilty of something and picked a fight with him that ended in his death. Thomas (BTW that was the victim’s name, Ed NOT “a homeless man”) wasn’t doing anything either before some tough cops decided he was guilty of something and picked a fight with him that ended in his death. The only difference is Martin was better able to try and defend himself – for all the good it did.

  8. Alverant says

    #8
    It’s called self defense, colnago. Zimmerman was armed and therefore a threat to Martin’s life. When you start a fight you don’t get to claim self defense, at least you shouldn’t be able to.

  9. D. C. Sessions says

    The Defense successfully argued that beating him to death was a necessary part of their duties as police officers. In effect, they were only following orders — which, to be fair, appears to be a basic legal principle in the United States.

  10. marcus says

    Something I have trouble comprehending is that there was not even one human being out of the 12 jurors who would be willing to hang the jury for a possibility of another shot at conviction. I would have never voted to acquit these murderous assholes. Never.

  11. D. C. Sessions says

    So if Martin had beaten Zimmerman to death, which was not outside the realm of possibility, that would have been AOK because the latter started it.

    No, it would have been OK [1] because Martin’s version of events would have been the only version of events.

    The moral of the Zimmerman case is that you should never leave the other guy alive.

    [1] At least, assuming he was white.

  12. Michael Heath says

    marcus writes:

    Something I have trouble comprehending is that there was not even one human being out of the 12 jurors who would be willing to hang the jury for a possibility of another shot at conviction. I would have never voted to acquit these murderous assholes. Never.

    Ditto.

  13. Scr... Archivist says

    There is this environmental writer named Derrick Jensen who I have heard on the radio. I don’t agree with his opposition to civilization, or all of his premises. But I think he did accurately describe something about our society when he wrote the following:

    Violence done by those higher on the hierarchy to those lower is nearly always invisible, that is, unnoticed. When it is noticed, it is fully rationalized. Violence done by those lower on the hierarchy to those higher is unthinkable, and when it does occur is regarded with shock, horror, and the fetishization of the victims.

    Police who literally get away with murder are a repeated example of this. A civilized society wouldn’t stand for it, but we still have a long way to go before we get there.

  14. freehand says

    colnago80: So if Martin had beaten Zimmerman to death, which was not outside the realm of possibility, that would have been AOK because the latter started it.

    I love how you spin things. Are you saying that it was AOK for Zimmerman to stalk a kid, confront him a second time, then shoot him to death? Because that’s what happened.

    If Zimmerman had behaved this way to me, I would have attacked when he reached for the gun, maybe when he was getting out of the car, depending on what he had said before and how he held himself. I might be in jail, but I would be alive. It would have been self-defense no matter how the verdict turned out.

    It was murder even if Martin swung first.

  15. freehand says

    theschwa – he was apparently panicked because of a related shooting nearby, where a cop was in a shootout with Dorner. Actually the other cop was in a shootout with two unarmed Asian ladies delivering newspapers, because two Asian ladies look like a black male ex-cop. right? And the cop you mentioned shot at a white guy driving an ominous black pick up truck. These guys were so panicked that they were shooting at random civilians. And now they’re not in trouble for it. Anybody could do that, right?

    I understand finding yourself in a fire fight and missing all shots, or peeing your pants, etc. These are all normal responses to a fight for you life. But driving around, looking for a single individual shouldn’t have these professionals shooting at everything that moves!

  16. says

    freehand – I shoot and ram cars all the time and have never been charged for it, so I guess I was overreacting when i wrote that. I take it back. It is completely normal and excusable, not to mention 110% professional!

  17. busterggi says

    I’m okay with this.

    I made my peace years ago when I realized that most cops are basically Nazis and much of the public supported that.

    The majority of people in this country love ignorance & brutality as long as its directed at ‘dangerous’, i.e.: other, people.

  18. Wylann says

    I don’t normally, but this time I hope maybe there’s some vigilante justice (except this poor homeless guy probably didn’t have anyone that cared).

    Fuck…I hate this world.

  19. colnago80 says

    Re Freehand @ #18

    I love how you spin things. Are you saying that it was AOK for Zimmerman to stalk a kid, confront him a second time, then shoot him to death? Because that’s what happened.

    How do you know that that’s the way it went down? According to Zimmerman, he had started back to his car when he was confronted by Martin. As to who threw the first punch, it should be noted that Martin had no injuries other then the gunshot wound whereas Zimmerman has injuries to the back of his head and his nose. If Zimmerman threw the first punch, it was remarkably ineffective. Furthermore, how do you know that Martin was aware that Zimmerman was armed? If he was, he was remarkably foolish to attack an armed man with nothing but his fists.

  20. Nogbert says

    Presumably it wouldn’t be all that difficult to ascertain the whereabouts of Manuel Ramos and Jay Cicinelli. I think we should all know their addresses, published online alongside photographs and reminders of this murder.
    May a day never pass without these ex cops fearing the approach of strangers, the ring of the door bell or the creaking of floor boards in the night.
    Sometimes stalking is good.

  21. marcus says

    @23 The jury has spoken and I won’t second guess their decision. However, that does not change my opinion that Zimmerman is a fool and a killer and that his reckless stupidity caused the death of another human being. He may not be guilty of murder but he is definitely not innocent.

  22. Michael Heath says

    marcus @ 25:

    The [Zimmerman] jury has spoken and I won’t second guess their decision. However, that does not change my opinion that Zimmerman is a fool and a killer and that his reckless stupidity caused the death of another human being. He may not be guilty of murder but he is definitely not innocent.

    I heard a juror explain why they didn’t convict the killer for 3rd degree murder. It was incoherent and contra the facts. Essentially they argued that Mr. Martin could have walked away [1] from Zimmerman, with no evidence this was actually true. The prosecution, as bad as they were, still presented overwhelming evidence that the killer was negligent, which is sufficient to convict on some level of 3rd degree murder. The incoherency comes in because even if Mr. Martin could have fled, Mr. Zimmerman was still criminally negligent based on the finding of facts established at the trial.

    1] I found this, “Martin could have walked away” rationale reeking of racism. I’m supremely confident a white victim’s family would never have to sit in a court in the U.S. and then hear a ruling that the victim was somehow to blame for their own murder because a jury imagined they didn’t do enough to stop their killer. And yes, I’m fully aware of the racial make-up up of the Martin jury. I’m also fully aware of how pathetic our country’s critical thinking skills are. I’m also fully aware that so many people bend to the will of their peers rather than standing on principle; as we also see demonstrated in the case Ed blogs about here.

  23. smrnda says

    I once observed a man fall down, supposedly having a seizure. Some cops were nearby and immediately, rather than dealing with it as a medical issue, started to question him as to whether he’d been drinking, etc. One time, while I was taking a bus to a grocery store, I noticed the police had 3 police cars blocking a street to deal with a fight between 2 junior high school students (if they were even that old) that the cops had in cuffs. Small things like that, where it’s obvious cops are out to play ‘tough guy’ and do not serve nor protect, makes me realize why horrible events like this are possible – the cops are thugs who, if put in a situation where the think they can get away with it, would probably kill someone just for kicks.

    Personally, I think that nobody should be allowed to apply to be a cop. Communities can nominate people they think would do a good job, and a person can be voted off the force at any time. I just think anyone who wants to be a cop (or prison guard) probably shouldn’t be one.

  24. says

    Nogbert@24:

    Presumably it wouldn’t be all that difficult to ascertain the whereabouts of Manuel Ramos and Jay Cicinelli. I think we should all know their addresses, published online alongside photographs and reminders of this murder.”

    Be careful not to become what and who you hate.

  25. mildlymagnificent says

    Personally, I think that nobody should be allowed to apply to be a cop. Communities can nominate people they think would do a good job, and a person can be voted off the force at any time. I just think anyone who wants to be a cop (or prison guard) probably shouldn’t be one.

    No. I’d go the other way. I’m Australian so I’m allowed to commit the heresy of suggesting that communities and governments should spend taxpayer money, maybe even lots of taxpayer money, on proper initial training of law enforcement officers.

    What you find in an extended training course that makes it very clear what the duties and obligations of a sworn officer are is that most of the arseholes will voluntarily withdraw if they aren’t first failed by the instructors. Though, speaking as one who occasionally got involved with tutoring people wanting to sit the entry tests for police or firefighting or armed services, the clowns who wanted these jobs for the wrong reasons tended to have paid too little attention to their schooling to even get past the initial computer based tests. (But it was heartbreaking to see people who had all the “right” attributes miss out – literacy requirements for cops are pretty high, and firefighters can fail eight weeks into the training just because their mental arithmetic isn’t up to ETA calculations – under any circumstances, let alone under the stress of a high speed journey to an emergency.)

    And governments should also spend a lot of money on maintaining professional standards and on re-qualification. Not just on firearms and first aid/ resuscitation courses and technology stuff, but on keeping up to date with changes in laws, regulations and court interpretations of statutes.

  26. says

    @mildlymagnificent:

    No. I’d go the other way. I’m Australian so I’m allowed to commit the heresy of suggesting that communities and governments should spend taxpayer money, maybe even lots of taxpayer money, on proper initial training of law enforcement officers.

    Though there is variation by jurisdiction, communities in the US generally spend a great deal of money on training. And the selection process in many jurisdictions is actually quite rigorous, with the overwhelming majority of applicants rejected. The father of the victim in this case was himself a recruit who went to the academy and was dismissed from the OC sheriff’s department during his probationary period.

    Training provided by the academies isn’t really the problem. The problem in the US is often related to an entrenched police culture that rejects attitudes cultivated at the academies. There is also a problem of inadequate monitoring and accountability after new officers leave the academy. While every force has it’s bad actors who are that way by disposition, it’s often the situation more than a problem of who slipped through the selection process. Think Zimbardo’s research on abuse and torture to understand what generally goes wrong in the US.

    Chicago has had enormous problems with its culture of police misconduct, violence, abuse and even torture. There is stubborn culture that resists change. But if you’ve lived in Chicago as long as I have, and if you talk with police officers, the change in who becomes a police officer has been striking over the years. Honestly, thirty years ago, my contacts with Chicago police officers impressed upon me that the profession attracted dumb, poorly educated bullies. If you talk to a police officer in Chicago today, what might strike you first is how much they sound like any other educated, worldly person. Clearly, the quality of recruits is way up, yet there are still problems because the intergenerational culture is so deeply disdainful of change, fostering an us versus them mentality in new officers who don’t leave the academy thinking that way.

  27. freehand says

    colnago80@23 -

    Which of these statements do you dispute?

    1. Zimmerman confronted Martin for no good reason.
    2. Zimmerman, after letting Martin leave the public scene, then stalked him by car.
    3. Zimmerman, armed with a gun, confronted Martin again.
    4. Zimmerman shot Martin dead.

    Personally if someone confronted me for no good reason, then tracked me down and confronted me again in a secluded spot, I would consider that person a serious threat. If I saw him reach – as for a weapon – I would immediately attack (or possibly run, if he were obviously keeping his distance). This is threatening and felonious behavior on Zimmerman’s part. Martin’s punching first would be self-defense. I do not attack people because I don’t like their politics, or think them rude, or they dress funny. But I will physically fight if threatened and I and other potential victims cannot reasonably get away.

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