August 16, 2000
Thomas Jones may be a criminal, but so was police behavior Thomas Jones was apparently involved in very serious criminal activity before and during the altercation with police. I do not justify his behavior or absolve him of responsibility. It has since been determined that Jones did not shoot a police officer, but even if an officer had been shot by Jones, that would not be justification for the abuse he suffered. The mayor, district attorney and Police Department seem determined to rationalize the abusive behavior of the officers who beat and kicked Jones.
July 20, 2000
Editor's note: Of about 150 letters, faxes and e-mail on the arrest of Thomas Jones, more than 2-1 show support for the Philadelphia police. That support ranges from condoning the way Jones was subdued, to waiting for all the facts, to seeing brutality in this case but recognizing the difficulty of the situation and police work in general. Today, the second wave of response: reactions to the reactions. Tomorrow, responses to Arlene Notoro Morgan's column on how the media have handled the arrest.
July 19, 2000 |
The Black Clergy of Philadelphia and Vicinity, meeting daily with city leaders and each other to deal with alleged abuse by Philadelphia police in a violent arrest last week, find themselves with a new crisis. They'll meet again today to plot a response to yesterday's killing of an unarmed man by an Amtrak police officer. They've already scheduled an interfaith, interracial rally for Sunday to protest abuse. It's been a busy week for a group that's politically potent and never bashful about handling hot potatoes.
April 5, 2000 |
In a case that pushes the concept of police abuse to its limits, the city's Police Advisory Commission has concluded that a police lieutenant in the Internal Affairs division engaged in misconduct when he allegedly pulled back his sport coat to reveal a gun. The incident occurred in July 1997, when Lt. Michael Weaver, who was later promoted to captain, attempted to serve notice of a required IAD interview with Nathaniel Harley, a police officer...
March 22, 2000 |
Saying they did not violate anyone's constitutional rights, Darby Borough officials and police officers asked a federal court yesterday to dismiss a lawsuit that accuses them of a 15-year pattern of police abuse, official cover-ups and other civil rights transgressions. "There are actually very few factual allegations made," William F. Holsten, a lawyer for the borough and its police force, stated in court papers filed yesterday in U.S. District Court. The motion for dismissal was in response to a 77-page complaint filed last month that cited 127 cases of alleged misconduct by Darby police against scores of people between February 1984 and July 1999.
May 17, 1999 |
Tameika Brown, a counselor from Delaware County Women Against Rape, was collecting her thoughts on the way to Trainer to conduct a police training session. Sometimes police are hard to reach, she said: "There's this perception that we're this radical feminist group who's going to come in and tell them what to do. " But Brown wasn't worried. Sitting across the table from her in a restaurant, in a purple shirt, dark slacks and a brown mustache, was her secret weapon: Officer Tom Byrne.
July 17, 1998 |
The Greek Picnic controversy continues to separate into two investigations - sexual assaults on women attendees and possible police brutality. Police announced yesterday that at least two of the officers shown on a home videotape beating two males in separate incidents have been temporarily assigned to desk duty while the investigation proceeds. Police also said that four more women had come forward claiming they had been victims of what is now being called "whirling. " The term refers to a large group of men who encircle a woman, fondle her and tear off her clothes, sometimes leaving her naked.
July 8, 1998 |
Aggressive policing, credited with helping reduce crime to historic lows across the country, has a grim underbelly - widespread increases in police violence, much of it targeted at ethnic and racial minorities, a new report from one of the nation's largest human rights organizations charged yesterday. The Human Rights Watch report, which examines police behavior in 14 cities, including Philadelphia, accuses federal and local governments of ignoring chronic cases of police brutality.
December 3, 1997 |
As part of his effort to improve race relations in America, President Clinton is vowing to mount a public assault against police officers whose treatment of minorities he described as "chilling. " "In some ways, I think it eats at some communities in America as much as anything in terms of continuing evidence that discrimination exists, even though we've made a lot of progress," he said. In an Oval Office interview, the President staunchly defended affirmative action, praised interracial marriage as one remedy for prejudice, and said he is disturbed that the death penalty, which he supports, is applied more frequently when a murder victim is white.