Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Cops Gone Wild Part 18: The Taser An Unarmed Man Standing On A Ledge Edition

Last week, NYPD officers caused the death of an unarmed mentally disturbed man who had climbed outside on a storefront ledge nude. The mother of the man who was exhibiting bizarre behavior, called 911 seeking assistance for her son. Instead of seeing her son receive the help he needed, she is now mourning his death.

When the police arrived to "help" Inman Morales, instead of coaxing him off they ledge, they tasered him. Using such force was obviously excessive since Mr. Morales wasn't brandishing a weapon. There was also no chance that Mr. Morales had a concealed weapon, because he wasn't wearing any clothing.

As a result of being tasered Inman Morales plunged head first off of the ledge on which he was statant, to his death. The NYPD's Deputy Commissioner recounted the tragic incident by saying, "While officers had radioed for an inflatable bag as the incident unfolded, it had not yet arrived at the scene when Morales fell. None of the ESU [Emergency Service Unit] officers on the scene were positioned to break his fall, nor did they devise a plan in advance to do so."

It seems that the officers who were involved in causing the death of Mr. Morales acted outside of departmental guidelines which reportedly directs officers to avoid tasering people who could possibly fall from an elevated surface.

The lieutenant who gave the green light for the tasering has allegedly been placed on modified assignment. The officer who actually shocked Inman Morales with his stun gun, has reportedly been given administrative duties. The NYPD's Emergency Service Unit is also said to be undergoing retraining on the proper use of a taser.

Michael Bloomberg, the man who has been accused by the press of wanting to change the law so he can serve a third term as New York's mayor, had this to say about the nonsensical, life-aborting actions of the NYPD: I'm "not sure this was handled right."

I don't have an abacus with enough beads to tally the number of deaths caused by police officers acting nonsensically. I don't understand the light pinch (if that) that police officers consistently get for unjustifiably taking people's lives.

[SIDEBAR: I still remember when I thought that having Bloomberg as a mayor would be good for the city, but with responses like the one he gave regarding the death of Mr. Morales (among other actions), I feel sadly mistaken].

R.I.P. Inman Morales & Khiel Coppin.

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