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Yet another police racial scandalBY: Dan Rottenberg 08.09.2009
If an esteemed black Harvard professor like Henry Louis Gates Jr. can be arrested for breaking into his own home, is any black American safe from police abuse? Apparently not, as a newly uncovered racial outrage in Washington, D.C., amply demonstrates.
Worse than the Gates arrest:
Police report #HK 1605341
At 8:16 p.m. a caller to 911 reported suspicious activity on the 1600 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, where a mulatto male was observed lurking on a porch and attempting to force his way through a door. I arrived at the address in question at 8:21 and found suitcases and other unattended valuables on the front porch, suggesting a possible burglary in progress. When I kicked open the door I found a mulatto male matching the description of the suspect standing in the front hallway.
I asked the mulatto what he was doing there and how he could explain the goods on the front porch. He said he lived there and had just returned from a trip overseas and the suitcases were his luggage. He said he was suffering from jetlag and could not find his key and consequently had used his credit card to jimmy open the door.
When I asked him for some form of ID, he became delusional, saying he was the President of the United States and had just returned from Egypt, where he had addressed 1 billion Muslims, and that it was the lead story on all the TV news programs. This seemed unbelievable on its face, since there are only 82 million people in Egypt, many of them Coptic Christians.
When I again asked him for ID, he became evasive, replying, “I’m busting my gut to reform health care, and you’re bugging me with this shit?”
In keeping with departmental policy for defusing potentially explosive situations, I replied that I occasionally imagine myself to be Pope Benedict XVI, whereas actually I am only Officer Festus Garvey of the D.C. Police. In that lighthearted spirit I again asked him for his ID. Instead of appreciating my joke the suspect became defensive and hostile, calling me a racist and an idiot and asking, “Don’t you fucking read a newspaper?”
I explained that police officers work long stressful hours that allow us little time for reading and relaxation, as he should surely understand if he watched any of the many TV programs portraying the nerve-wracking conditions under which police officers must operate each and every day. But he merely replied, “You want tension, buster? Try switching jobs with me!”
Suspecting a possible alcohol or drug situation, I asked if he’d been drinking or inhaling toxic substances. He replied, “Who needs drugs to get high when a billion Muslims are chanting your name?”
At this point I asked the suspect to step outside on the porch. He refused to cooperate and began ranting in a hostile manner, threatening to contact my superiors and have me “strung up by the balls from the White House flagpole.” When I asked him to come with me to the station for a Breathalyzer test, he escalated his diatribe, castigating all police officers, white people (other than his own relatives) and “Irish mother-fuckers” in particular.
I pointed out to the suspect that he was making no sense and that I had in fact exceeded the department’s minimum required coursework in racial sensitivity training. I advised the suspect that threatening to use political influence against a police officer was itself a violation of District statutes. I drew my weapon and motioned the suspect onto the porch, where he was frisked, cuffed and arrested for loitering, burglary, impersonating a government official, disrespecting and threatening a police officer, improper use of political leverage, disorderly conduct, public drunkenness and possible drug abuse.
At the station the suspect refused to budge from his original story. To determine its validity, the suspect was held over for enhanced interrogation within the 2002 departmental guidelines as approved in a memo to the White House counsel by Deputy Assistant Attorney General John Yoo.♦
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