Seriously! How does such a MORON get to the U S Senate!?
He is dangerously stupid! Idiots like this guy are making criminal justice laws and policies!
Excerpts from the Article:
Republican Sen. Ron Johnson, of Wisconsin, questioned the need for widespread COVID-19 vaccinations, saying in a radio interview “what do you care if your neighbor has one or not?”
Johnson, who has no medical expertise or background, made the comments Thursday during an interview with conservative talk radio host Vicki McKenna. Contrary to what medical experts advise, Johnson has said he doesn’t need to be vaccinated because he had COVID-19 in the fall. On Thursday, he went further, questioning why anyone would get vaccinated or worry about why others have not.
“For the very young, I see no reason to be pushing vaccines on people.” Johnson said. “I certainly am going to vigorously resist any kind of government use or imposing of vaccine passports. … That could be a very freedom-robbing step and people need to understand these things.”
Johnson’s comments come as health officials in the U.S. and around the world urge people to get vaccinated for COVID-19 as soon as possible, saying that reaching herd immunity is the best shot at stopping the uncontrolled spread of the virus.
Herd immunity occurs when enough people have been vaccinated or have immunity from natural infection that the virus can’t easily spread and the pandemic fizzles out. Nobody knows for sure what the herd immunity threshold is for the coronavirus, but many experts say it’s 70% or higher. And the emergence of variants is further complicating the picture.
In Wisconsin, more than 41% of the population has received at least one shot of vaccine and roughly 30% has been fully vaccinated. But demand for vaccinations has slowed in parts of the U.S. in a worrisome sign.
Johnson, a former plastics manufacturer with a bachelor’s degree in business and accounting, said he doesn’t think people should feel pressured to get vaccinated.
“The science tells us the vaccines are 95% effective, so if you have a vaccine quite honestly what do you care if your neighbor has one or not?” Johnson said. “What is it to you? You’ve got a vaccine and science is telling you it’s very, very effective. So why is this big push to make sure everybody gets a vaccine? And it’s to the point where you’re going to shame people, you’re going to force them to carry a card to prove that they’ve been vaccinated so they can still stay in society. I’m getting highly suspicious of what’s happening here.”
The interview ended before Johnson explained what he was suspicious of.
On Friday, Johnson issued a statement doubling down on his earlier comments.
“Everyone should have the right to gather information, consult with their doctor and decide for themselves whether to get vaccinated,” Johnson said, noting his support for former President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed program to quickly develop a vaccine. “Now I believe government’s role (and therefore my role) is to help ensure transparency so that people have as much information as possible to make an informed decision for themselves.”
Johnson said it was legitimate to question whether people with a low risk of suffering a serious illness from COVID-19 should get vaccinated. He promised to “vigorously oppose” vaccine passports.
Republicans have portrayed vaccine passports as a heavy-handed intrusion into personal freedom and private health choices. They currently exist in only one state — a limited government partnership in New York with a private company — but that hasn’t stopped GOP lawmakers in a handful of states from rushing out legislative proposals to ban their use.
Johnson has not said yet whether he will seek a third term in 2022. A number of Democrats have already announced they are running, including Milwaukee Bucks executive Alex Lasry, state Treasurer Sarah Godlewski and Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson.
Nelson tweeted that Johnson’s “scientifically illiterate beliefs are deadly and will only prolong the Covid crisis. Time for a new Senator.”
Godlewski also blasted Johnson, saying he “is literally campaigning against widespread vaccines. His denial of science isn’t just irresponsible, it’s downright dangerous, and Wisconsinites deserve so much better.”
Ohio officials release more body cam video of fatal police shooting of Black teen and urge community to await the facts
I have read the reports and seen all the videos available, and it certainly seems to me that this shooting was justified!
Excerpts from the Article:
Columbus, Ohio, officials released additional body camera video on Wednesday of a police officer fatally shooting a Black teen who charged two females with a knife.
“We don’t yet have all of the facts but we do know that a 16-year-old girl, a child of this community, tragically died last night,” Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther told reporters.
“Bottom line: Did Ma’Khia Bryant need to die yesterday?” he added. “How did we get here? This is a failure on the part of our community. Some are guilty but all of us are responsible.”
Police body cam video shows Ma’Khia Bryant charging a young woman with a knife Tuesday before she was shot by officer in Columbus, Ohio.
Police identified the officer who fired the shots as Nicholas Reardon, who was hired in December 2019. The officer is off street duty pending an investigation. Calls seeking comment from the police union have not been returned.
Hundreds gathered in different sections of Columbus throughout the day as they headed toward police headquarters.
In a series of clips from police body camera video, the girl is seen holding a knife during a tussle with another young woman. An officer arrived at the scene and opened fire when the girl appeared to attempt to stab a second woman.
In the video, one officer is heard asking, “Where is she hit?” The officer starts lifesaving measures. “Stay with us,” he tells the girl, asking bystanders her name. “Stay with us, Ma’Khia,” he implored.
Officials asked the community to wait for all the facts to come out.
In Tuesday’s shooting, police received a call at 4:32 p.m. indicating “females were there trying to stab them and put their hands on them,” Columbus Interim Police Chief Michael Woods said.
The video shows a teen quickly move toward another girl with what appears to be a knife, and the girl falls to the ground. The officer yells, “Hey, hey, hey, hey. Get down!” before she appears to lunge at a second girl with the knife, according to the video. The officer tells her to “Get Down! Get down! Get down! Get down!” and then fires four shots in the direction of the teenager.
The Whole Story
Another of dozens of serious prison abuse articles I see every week!
Excerpts from the Article:
A Vermont civil rights chapter is attempting to pry open the cover of secrecy between a health-care contractor and the state of Vermont.
Earlier this week, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Vermont filed an amicus brief in support of the Human Rights Defense Center’s (HRDC) effort to look into the state of Vermont and a corrections health-care contractor. HRDC is a nonprofit charitable organization dedicated to advancing the rights of prisoners.
Behind the brief is the issue that some Vermont prisoners have alleged inadequate health care by Wellpath, a firm contracted by the state.
By legal definition, amicus briefs (literally, “a friend of the court”) are filed “by people who typically take the position of one side in a case, in the process of supporting a cause that has some bearing on the issues in the case.”
The ACLU of Vermont’s brief is supporting an effort by the Florida-based Human Rights Defense Center (HRDC) “to obtain records of legal claims filed against Vermont’s former prison healthcare provider over a period of five years.”
Is it legal for a state contractor to withhold public records involving a core government function, in this case, the provision of healthcare in Vermont prisons? That’s what the ACLU and HRDC are attempting to ascertain.
The issue has been presented to the Vermont Supreme Court to consider in the hopes of a ruling this year.
The most notable official supporting the ACLU and HRDC is Secretary of State Jim Condos, a long-time outspoken advocate of government transparency. Along with Condos, Vermont State Auditor Doug Hoffer, the Vermont Prisoners’ Rights Office, and the New England First Amendment Coalition have joined the amicus
According to a March 23 news release, ACLU of Vermont Senior Staff Attorney Lia Ernst said, “Vermonters expect their government and its contractors to be accountable. For that to happen, we can’t allow private corporations performing traditional, core government roles to evade our public records laws. Transparency is especially important in this context, given the continuing failures of our prison healthcare system and the resulting harms to incarcerated Vermonters and their families. The state can choose to outsource its work, but its legal obligations do not just disappear.”
The ACLU brief essentially outlines that, from 2010 to 2015, private for-profit Correct Care Solutions/Wellpath, contracted with the state to provide health care for all people incarcerated in Vermont prisons. “In return, the state paid Wellpath roughly $94 million,” according to ACLU Vermont. “HRDC…requested copies of settlements of the lawsuits filed against Wellpath. Wellpath refused to disclose those records, prompting this lawsuit.” Vermont’s Department of Corrections “contractually delegated to Wellpath a function that the DOC is both constitutionally and statutorily mandated to undertake and argues that, because it was operating as a ‘functional equivalent’ of the government, Wellpath took on the government’s transparency obligations under the state’s public records law.”
The ACLU of Vermont litigated the same issue in 2013. At that time, the Vermont Supreme Court ordered the Corrections Corporation of America to disclose records ACLU Vermont requested.
ACLU of Vermont stated, “that the Public Records Act’s purpose of ensuring governmental accountability cannot be achieved if agencies can outsource their core responsibilities – but not their transparency obligations – to private entities.”
The text of the amicus brief may be read online at https://www.acluvt.org/sites/default/files/2020-308_hrdc_v._ccs_secretary_condos_et_al._amicus_brief.pdf.
A bad decision; the earlier cases recognized that the brain is not fully developed until age 25 …. so maybe some juveniles deserve a break. This court washed all that away.
Excerpts from the Article:
The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a life term in prison without parole for a defendant who was 15 when he fatally stabbed his grandfather in Mississippi, ruling that a sentencing judge need not decide that the young person was “permanently incorrigible.” The 6-3 decision retreats somewhat from a pair of earlier rulings, which said that such life sentences for minors convicted of murder should be extremely rare and limited to cases in which there was no reason to hope the young person could be rehabilitated.
California and 24 other states have abolished life terms with no hope for parole for offenders under 18. But Justice Sonia Sotomayor said such prison terms remain shockingly common in parts of the Deep South, particularly for young people of color.
As of last year, “Louisiana had imposed LWOP [Life Without Parole] on an astonishing 57% of eligible juvenile offenders” since 2012, when the court called for restricting such sentences, she said. In 2016, the court gave these inmates a chance to seek a new sentence with possible parole, but the Mississippi courts have rejected one-fourth of such appeals, she said.
“The harm of from these sentences will not fall equally,” Sotomayor added. “The racial disparities in juvenile LWOP sentencing are stark: 70% of all youth sentenced to LWOP are children of color,” she said, citing a study from the Juvenile Law Center.
Five years ago, the court gave new hope to the more than 2,000 inmates who had been sentenced to life terms for crimes they committed as minors. The justices said they had a right to seek a new sentencing hearing and possible parole in the future. But the court’s opinion did not say precisely what judges must consider in deciding such cases.
At issue Thursday was whether the defendant’s life term with no parole should be set aside unless the judges concluded he was “incorrigible” and could not be rehabilitated. The justices divided along ideological lines, with the six conservatives in the majority and the three liberals in dissent.
Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh, speaking for the court in Jones vs. Mississippi, said judges are required to weigh the defendant’s age as a mitigating factor before imposing a punishment for a homicide. “The court’s decision today carefully follows” the earlier rulings, which did not prohibit such life terms, he said. Kavanaugh added that the sentencing decision remains in the hands of the judge who heard the case, and the judge need not go further and decide the defendant was beyond redemption.
“Today the court guts” its earlier rulings restricting such life terms, Sotomayor said in a sharp dissent for three liberals. She noted that one of the decisions held that “a lifetime in prison is a disproportionate sentence for all but the rarest children, those whose crimes reflect ‘irreparable corruption.’”
The outcome reflects the retirement of Justice Anthony M. Kennedy and the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Kennedy had repeatedly spoken out against harsh punishments for juvenile offenders, and he wrote the court’s ruling that ended capital punishment for them, as well as those that limited the circumstances for imposing life prison terms on those under 18.
Sotomayor said Thursday’s ruling means that even if a “juvenile’s crime reflects ‘unfortunate yet transient immaturity’, he can be sentenced to die in prison,” quoting a passage from Kennedy’s earlier opinion. Justices Stephen G. Breyer and Elena Kagan joined the dissent.
The case before the court began in 2004 when Brett Jones, age 15, was living with his grandparents Bertis and Madge in a small town in northern Mississippi. He and his grandfather exchanged angry words when it was learned that Jones’ girlfriend was in a bedroom upstairs. The two later fought in the kitchen, and the teenager stabbed his grandfather and fled.
He was convicted of the murder and at the time, state law mandated a sentence of life in prison without parole.
The Supreme Court overturned such mandatory sentences in 2012 and ruled in 2016 inmates may seek a new and lesser sentence. But a judge decided the life term was the proper sentence for Jones, and that decision was upheld by the state courts.
In upholding the sentence, Kavanaugh said such sentencing decisions should remain in the hands of judges who can weigh all the facts. Moreover, “our holding today does not preclude the states from imposing additional sentencing limits in cases involving defendants under 18 convicted of murder,” he said. “States may categorically prohibit life without parole for all offenders under 18. Or states may require sentencers to make extra factual findings before sentencing an offender under 18 to life without parole.”
Part of the racism, rampant in our criminal justice system.
Excerpts from the Article:
Last week in this space I bashed Chinese strongman Xi Jinping for forcing millions of people into slave labor in Xinjiang and elsewhere. But the United States does it too. Prison Legal News, the premier U.S. source for reporting from inside prisons, has published many articles about forced, nearly unpaid labor in U.S. prisons.
“It’s illegal to import convict-made goods into the United States, but the USA exports convict-made goods,” the editor of Prison Legal News told me in an email. “Every license plate in El Salvador is made by prisoners in Texas.”
That’s astounding: that the most densely populated, labor-intensive country in the Americas’ mainland, with a per capita income of $8,720 ($167.70 a week), would export jobs to the United States for our cheap labor.
So tell me, precisely what is the difference between Lord Xi’s war upon ethnic minorities, and his attempted extermination of Xinjiang, Muslim and Tibetan cultures, and our own lordly, centuries-long assaults and disproportionate imprisonment of Black people?
“African Americans are incarcerated in state prisons across the country at more than five times the rate of whites, and at least ten times the rate in five states,” according to a report by The Sentencing Project. In five states — Iowa, Minnesota, New Jersey, Vermont and Wisconsin — the disparity is more than 10 to 1.
And though no U.S. state has a majority black population (Mississippi has the largest Black population by percentage, at 38.9%), twelve states’ prison populations are more than 50% Black: Alabama, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.
Maryland, whose population is 32.2% Black, leads this tawdry parade, with a prison population that is 72% Black.
And how, if at all, are our prisoners employed, to do what, and for how much money?
Well, according to Prison Legal News’s February issue: “When historic wildfires burned through Arizona in June 2020, two out of three of the firefighters who brought the blazes under control were state prisoners who were paid just pennies on the dollar to do the same job as well-paid professional firefighters working right next to them.”
Inmate firefighters were paid $1.50 an hour to fight the forest fires: time deducted for breaks. State-employed firefighters average a little over $22 an hour, though with hazard pay and overtime on the fireline, they surely made more than that — as they should.
“What those numbers say to me is they’re using inmate labor to close the budget gap,” state Rep. Kristin Engel told Prison Legal News.
In the same issue, Prison Legal News reported that Texas state prisoners in the past year have been paid $2 an hour to move Covid-19 corpses in El Paso.
When I worked as a paralegal for refugees in U.S. immigration prisons during Reagan’s wars against Central America, immigration prisoners were paid $1 a day to work: cleaning, painting, cooking, repairing the prison that held them.
A dollar a day. They didn’t get the money in their hands, of course; it went on the books so they could buy a cookie or a Coke.
I remember one guy who told me: “No. I won’t work for a dollar a day. Twelve cents an hour? No. I’m a worker. My labor is worth more than a dollar a day.”
He had been a labor organizer in El Salvador, and fled after several of his colleagues were murdered and his life was threatened. And here he was in the United States, in prison, a union organizer, offered a job at $1 a day.
Arguments in our country’s “immigration debates” are endless, though they are not really arguments: just endless vituperation from the right and exasperation from the center. (There is no left wing in the United States.)
Well, if President Biden really wants to reduce undocumented immigration from Central America, I suggest he start by encouraging El Salvador to tell its own workers — free or in prison — to make their own damn license plates, rather than subcontracting Texas prisoners to do it.
I will not be surprised if he kills himself. Protective Custody in all jails and prisons is a total joke: guards more often than not sleep through their 8 hour shift, then awaken to check off the form saying that they checked on each inmate every 8 hours, as they are required to do. I know this because I saw it many times.
Excerpt from the Article:
Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was put into a prison’s segregated housing unit for his own safety, a prison spokesperson said, after Chauvin was found guilty of the murder of George Floyd on Tuesday.
Here’s what’s next for Chauvin after his conviction:
Derek Chauvin's booking photos, released Wednesday.
Derek Chauvin’s booking photos, released Wednesday.
Sentencing will be in eight weeks.
Chauvin will be sentenced in about eight weeks — so, around the second week of June — Judge Peter Cahill said Tuesday, with a precise date to be announced.
Although Chauvin had been out on bail since October, Cahill revoked Chauvin’s bail after the verdict. Chauvin will now await sentencing while behind bars.
in a segregated unit. Chauvin on Tuesday was taken to a state prison — the Minnesota Correctional Facility-Oak Park Heights — to await sentencing, Department of Corrections spokesperson Sarah Fitzgerald said.
There, he was placed in an administrative control unit — a housing unit that is separated from the general population, Fitzgerald said.
“He is on ‘administrative segregation’ status for his safety,” Fitzgerald wrote to CNN in an email. “Administrative segregation is used when someone’s presence in the general population is a safety concern.”
He is at the prison through an agreement between the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office and the Minnesota Department of Corrections, Fitzgerald told CNN. The judge will consider these factors
Chauvin’s sentence will depend on several factors, including the state’s sentencing guidelines, and whether the judge decides to go beyond the guidelines because of certain circumstances.
Technically, Chauvin could face up to 40 years in prison for second-degree murder, up to 25 years for third-degree murder, and up to 10 years for manslaughter.
However, Chauvin has no prior criminal record. The state’s guidelines say that for such a person, the presumptive sentence for both second-degree and third-degree murder is 12 1/2 years. The judge is given discretion to hand down a sentence between 10 years and eight months and 15 years for each.
Second-degree manslaughter carries a presumptive sentence of four years for someone with no record, according to the guidelines. The judge’s discretion ranges from three years and five months to four years and eight months.
However, prosecutors are asking for a tougher sentence than the recommendations provide.
In two filings last year, prosecutors said five aggravating factors warrant an increased sentence. Those factors include that Floyd was particularly vulnerable, that he was treated with particular cruelty, and that children were present when the crimes were committed.
If the judge applies aggravating factors, it would shift Chauvin’s sentence to a higher part of the legal range.
The sentences for all three crimes would likely be served at the same time, not consecutively. “Generally, when an offender is convicted of multiple current offenses… concurrent sentencing is presumptive,” according to the guidelines.
What about the other officers charged?
The three other officers facing charges in Floyd’s death are expected to be tried together in August. Tou Thao, Thomas Lane and J. Alexander Kueng are all charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and aiding and abetting second-degree manslaughter.
People too often think that if “Science” is involved, it must be perfect. WRONG! We have seen that this face recognition technology, fiber comparison and hair comparison technology, and even DNA “matches” are not foolproof.
Excerpts from the Article:
Nijeer Parks, 33, had two previous convictions for selling drugs and had served six years in prison. But he turned his life around; he had a job and was saving up to marry his fiancée.
Parks learned that police were attempting to locate him about an incident involving candy stolen from a hotel gift shop in Woodbridge on the night of January 26, 2019. Parks had his cousin drive him to the station, thinking he would clear his name in what, to him, was an obvious case of mistaken identity.
“I had no idea what this was about,” said Parks. “I’d never been to Woodbridge before, didn’t even know for sure where it was.”
Instead of a polite interview, Parks was interrogated for hours while officers told him “you know what you did” and showed him photos of a Dodge Challenger damaged during the suspect’s getaway.
Parks requested an attorney; he was then handcuffed to a bench in the hallway and left there for another hour. Concerned for his safety, Parks faked an asthma attack, so he would be transferred to the local ER. Afterward, he was booked into the local jail where he waited 10 days before being released.
At his first hearing, Parks’ attorney requested the court inquire into how the police had identified Parks and what evidence they had against him.
After the suspect fled the hotel, officers sent the suspect’s driver’s license to state agencies that had access to face recognition technology, The New York Times reports. The software claimed to make a “high profile match” based on Parks’ New Jersey state ID.
Learning the only evidence the State had was this obviously false positive “match,” the court demanded more from the State before proceeding. Prosecutors later dropped the charges entirely.
Parks is now suing for civil rights violations relating to excessive force, false imprisonment, and cruel and unusual punishment. The State originally “offered” a plea deal for six years in prison, though Parks could have faced up to 20 years if he took the charges to trial and lost. While his attorney was able to beat the charges without proceeding to trial, the cost of fighting them depleted Parks his entire savings.
Parks was not the first person wrongfully harassed or jailed by police over faulty AI software. Detroit PD made two bogus arrests using the software within a matter of months. Facial recognition programs currently available are known to have a harder time identifying people of color, and Park appears African-American.
This incident is a continuation of police reliance on faulty investigative tools instead of honest detective work. Officers at the scene confronted the suspect, who provided a fake Tennessee driver’s license then fled, first on foot then in a vehicle. The suspect damaged the police cruiser and almost hit an officer with his vehicle while leaving the scene.
A detective sent the photo ID to state agencies, and a Hertz employee in the hotel lobby confirmed the license photo was of the candy shoplifter.
Notably, Parks needed his cousin to drive him to the police station because he doesn’t own a car.
Some cities and states have prohibited the use of facial recognition software, mostly because it is so unreliable. Police departments claim it will only be used to track violent criminals and prevent sexual abuse of children. However, Parks was suspected of shoplifting candy and fleeing police. At least one of the men wrongly arrested by the Detroit PD was suspected of stealing watches.
If there is no real accountability for law enforcement, abuses will continue to happen.
17 requests for backup in 78 minutes A reconstruction shows how failures of planning and preparation left police at the Capitol severely disadvantaged on Jan. 6
Thank God steps are being taken to ensure this will never happen again.
Excerpts from the Article:
At 1:13 p.m. on Jan. 6, a D.C. police commander facing a swelling crowd of protesters on the west side of the U.S. Capitol made an urgent call for more officers in riot gear. “Hard gear at the Capitol! Hard gear at the Capitol!” Cmdr. Robert Glover shouted into his radio.
Glover and a team of D.C. police officers had rushed to the besieged complex moments earlier at the behest of Capitol Police. By the time they arrived, the Capitol grounds were already being overrun by a mob intent on overturning President Donald Trump’s electoral defeat.
Over the next 78 minutes, Glover requested backup at least 17 times, according to a Washington Post analysis of the events, and the mob on the west side eventually grew to at least 9,400 people, outnumbering officers by more than 58 to one.
The Post reviewed police radio communications, synchronized them with hours of footage and drew on testimony and interviews with police supervisors to understand how failures of preparation and planning played out that day. The examination reveals how police were hampered by an insufficient number of officers and shortages of less-lethal weapons and protective equipment and also provides a glimpse into communications breakdowns within the police response.
At The Post’s request, a team of researchers at Carnegie Mellon University analyzed imagery to estimate the number of people outside the Capitol at precise moments. To visualize those numbers more clearly, The Post created a 3-D model of the Capitol grounds that approximated the crowd from a bird’s-eye view using data from the researchers’ crowd-counting software.
The audio recordings primarily capture the communications from Washington’s Metropolitan Police Department, or MPD. The recordings were turned over to Congress during Trump’s impeachment.
At 12:53 p.m., video shows, protesters were breaking through a perimeter of mesh fencing on the west side of the Capitol and beginning to advance toward the inaugural stage.
In footage reviewed by The Post, Glover and his team of at least 30 MPD officers, identifiable by their yellow-sleeved jackets, can be seen arriving at 1:12 p.m. Within minutes, police managed to push back the protesters and set up a new barrier.
But officers quickly suffered injuries as the mob grew in size and became more violent, according to video and audio recordings.
“Multiple Capitol injuries. Multiple Capitol injuries,” Glover announced at 1:18 p.m. on a police radio channel used to communicate with a joint operations center at D.C. police headquarters.
Glover’s pleas for officers and munitions grew more urgent. “I need those two other hard platoons up here now,” he said at some point between 1:36 and 1:39 p.m.
“Sir, we have one coming. We have one coming that’s working,” came the response.
Nearly a mile away, on the north side of the National Mall, an MPD platoon known as Unit 42 was putting on its riot gear and preparing to respond.
“They’re gearing up, and they should be to you now,” Glover was told a short time later in response to his request for an update.
At that time, Unit 42 was still trying to make its way to the Capitol, struggling to push through the crowds.
By 1:55 p.m., officers on the west side were vastly outnumbered.
The researchers at Carnegie Mellon’s Informedia Project estimated that there were at least 3,400 people on the northern half of the west side of the Capitol at that time, based on an analysis of images and videos that, when stitched together, cover that area. That is almost certainly an undercount, researchers said, because it does not include people who were obstructed by objects such as flags or trees. About 118 of those present are police officers, according to a Post review of the images.
With the crowd growing, some Capitol Police officers were pulled back, a move announced by a dispatcher between 1:50 and 1:59 p.m., according to the recordings.
“A decision was made by the United States Capitol Police to pull their personnel back inside the building at a point leaving one of my flanks pretty weak,” Glover told The Post on Jan. 12.
The Capitol Police declined to comment for this story.
By 2:01 p.m., Unit 42 had worked its way to the north side of the inaugural platform, where videos show its members — about 22 MPD officers — being shoved and insulted by the mob.
Elsewhere, rioters were getting behind police lines on the west side by attacking their flanks on the south and north. Rioters overtook the scaffolding to the north of the inaugural stage, gaining access to an upper terrace where they eventually broke a window on the west side of the building.
Still, officers fought to maintain the barrier they had established at the foot of the inaugural platform, near the center of the building’s west side.
Between 2:13 and 2:25 p.m., Glover requested guidance on a fallback position four times.
“I need a command official from Capitol so we can coordinate where they want us to pull back to,” he said, referring to a commander from U.S. Capitol Police. “We cannot hold this without more munitions or manpower.”
No response to his request for a fallback position is heard on the audio recordings.
At 2:25 p.m., according to an analysis of images, more than 9,400 people were visible in the crowd on the west side compared with 157 officers. By that time, Glover had requested more munitions at least seven times and more reinforcements at least 16 times, according to the radio transmissions.
Three minutes later, a rioter broke through the police line near the center of the inaugural platform. The crowd flooded toward the building’s entrances.
“We lost the line! We’ve lost the line! All MPD fall back!” Glover shouted at 2:28 p.m., announcing the code for an emergency, 10-33. “I repeat, 10-33, West Front of the Capitol. We’ve been flanked and we lost the line.”
The MPD retreated to an upper terrace, where at 2:31 p.m. Glover called for backup for the 17th time: “Cruiser 50 still going to need reinforcements upper deck West Front. Upper deck West Front; we cannot lose the upper deck.”
Less than 10 minutes later, video shows, the MPD team was forced from the upper terrace.
The debates about searches of cell phone data seems endless, as this case further indicates.
Excerpts from the Article:
The Wisconsin Supreme Court heard arguments Monday in a case hinging on how much reach police have when they want to search data extracted from a cellphone in the course of investigating a crime separate from the incident that led to the data’s extraction in the first place.
In June 2016, George Burch was questioned by officers with the Green Bay Police Department in connection with a hit-and-run incident, at which point an officer asked to see some text messages on Burch’s phone before asking if he could take the phone, have the information on it downloaded and then return it.
The officer did not qualify what he meant by “the information,” and Burch voluntarily signed a consent form giving the officer and any assisting personnel permission to search his Samsung cellphone without placing any limits on the scope of the search. All of the phone’s contents were downloaded, but the officer was only provided with a narrow portion of it pertaining to the hit-and-run investigation by forensics examiners.
Around the same time a few miles away, the Brown County Sheriff’s Office was investigating the murder of Nicole VanderHeyden, whose body was discovered in a nearby field in May 2016. Based on DNA evidence taken from the victim’s sock, the sheriff’s office began investigating Burch for the murder in August of that year.
It was then that the sheriff’s office learned Green Bay police possessed the extracted data from Burch’s phone, which was shared with them and was ultimately used to connect Burch to the murder, including by pinpointing that the phone was located near where VanderHeyden’s body was found in the early morning hours on the day it was discovered.
Burch was arrested, charged and convicted of VanderHeyden’s murder in Brown County Circuit Court and sentenced to life without parole. At his trial, he moved to suppress evidence the sheriff’s office got from his phone on the basis that searching it violated his Fourth Amendment rights, a motion that was denied by Judge John Zakowski. Burch, 43, remains incarcerated at the Wisconsin Secure Program Facility in Boscobel, according to a Wisconsin Department of Corrections database.
Upon appeal, the District III Court of Appeals found there were novel Fourth Amendment concerns presented by the case and certified it for review by Wisconsin’s highest court, leading to Monday’s virtual arguments.
Arguing on Burch’s behalf, Green Bay-based attorney Ana Babcock held up a thumb drive she said held data extractions of about a dozen peoples’ cellphones, which means “I have at my fingertips every intimate detail” of the peoples’ lives.
Babcock said the circuit court was wrong in determining that Burch expanded the scope of his consent of Green Bay police’s search of his cellphone beyond a few text messages when he technically consented to all of the phone’s data being downloaded, calling that “classic bait-and-switch deception.”
While Babcock argued that the justices need not go beyond the fact that law enforcement went above the limits of Burch’s consent when a different agency investigated his retained cellphone data for a different crime without a warrant, the high court tried to unpack how the tangled issues of scope, retention, privacy and consent related to physical evidence become challenging when dealing with the expansive, minutely detailed data on a person’s smartphone.
Assistant Attorney General Aaron O’Neil put it simply that because Burch gave blanket consent to searching his whole phone with no limitations, law enforcement can later look at it again without violating his constitutional rights.
Conservative Justice Rebecca Grassl Bradley resisted this logic, comparing it to the idea that giving police consent to search your home once means they can come back and search it again whenever they want, adding that cellphone searches are perhaps even more invasive.
Asking O’Neil to square with the Fourth Amendment the notion that police can retain cellphone data forever without limits and go back to it if they want to in subsequent investigations, the state’s attorney maintained that such subsequent investigations of the data are not unconstitutional if a person truly gives blanket consent with no limitations.
O’Neil also posited that a “search” is only conducted in the actual extraction of the data, which only happened once in Burch’s case, with his consent. The state’s attorney also put forth that a reasonable person would understand that if you let the police download everything on your phone, they are going to be able to access everything, and that such consent can be limited at the outset.
Many justices seemed wary of that kind of limitless search authority, with liberal Justice Jill Karofsky saying it’s hard to think about thousands of thumb drives with all of peoples’ data sitting around “without the hair on the back of my neck standing up.”
Babcock did not waver on rebuttal: if you want to conduct a new search, you need a new warrant, and the sheriff’s office did not get one, making the second look at Burch’s data unlawful.
Keith Findley, a professor at the University of Wisconsin Law School, agreed that the digital era presents complicated questions when it comes to law enforcement searches given the incredible amounts of data police can access.
Matters of the duration and scope of consent are important in Burch’s case, Findley said, as is the fact that the separate search at a later date was conducted by a law enforcement agency separate from the one that searched the phone in the first place.
“The new gloss that’s added to this is the fact that what we’re talking about is using existing doctrines in ways that might subject this massive amount of data that we all carry around in our pockets,” to sudden law enforcement scrutiny, Findley said, calling the issue “virtually unparalleled in history.”
Another important aspect, the professor said, is ensuring a reasonable balance between the intrusion upon defendants and the needs of law enforcement, which is just one unique challenge the digital world presents to the courts.
Having had more than 700 trials, (lost 2) I can tell you this: The closing argument is the most fun part and the most important part of any trial!
After opening statements and the introduction of evidence from both sides, each lawyer gives the jury his/her closing argument …. from 1/2 an hour to a couple of hours, depending on the complexity of the case.
In criminal cases, the State goes first, then the defense, then the State gets to go last (a big advantage, because you can pick apart whatever defense counsel said).
This is where you address the jurors, summarize your evidence, and ask them to do what you want them to do. You look them in the eye, never talk down to them, and always … always ask them to use their common sense!
And I always discussed “objections”. “Let me say just a few words about objections. When you hear an attorney object, it is not because he or she is trying to hide something from you. It is to get at the truth. The Rules of Evidence are designed to help you determine the truth, and they do a pretty good job of it. After all, that is your job: to decide who is telling the truth. I don’t do that, the judge does not do that .. YOU do that!”
Very important and tons of fun!