Monday, April 13, 2009

When The Police Attack The Victim

The following video comes with an extreme trigger warning.

Hope Steffey's called 911 for help and her night ended with her being stripped searched by the police and left alone in a cell.  As she screamed at the them to stop and questioned why they were stripping her against her will, the seven male and female sheriff's deputies and jail workers ignored her obvious terror.

"This could be your wife or anyone's wife," Greg Steffey said.

"You don't treat people like this," Greg Steffey said. "I don't think murderers are treated like this much less people charged with disorderly conduct."

The last two deputies to leave her cell were male.   Clearly this is a violation. If a strip search is required by law it must be conducted by officers of the same sex as the inmate.  Their concern was not upholding the law or ensuring that Hope’s rights were not violated.

Though Hope has yet to make a public statement on this  gross violation, her husband reports that she feels as though she has been raped.  After watching the video of what was done to her, I can more than understand why she feels this way.  Assault need not include penetration for it to be understood as an assault.

How many incidents do we need to see of police violating the rights of citizens that they are supposed to protect before we admit that the system is broken?  The average person has more reason to be afraid, than to look at them as a agency that can be counted on in a time of need.  Just last week there were reports of an officer assaulting a deaf man when he tried to tell him that he could not hear. People of color have a history of being not only being physically abused but murdered in cold blood.

These officers of law are nothing more than armed terrorist groups and it is time that they be brought under control.   They use the blue wall of silence to protect and shield each other.  These are not isolated incidents; they have occurred nation wide and therefore; at some point we must agree that there is some kind of connection.  It is time to begin to look at the kind of individual that is attracted to police work because clearly helping others is not a quality that our current officers possess. 

As I watched Hope be violated in a way that no human being ever should be, my heart just burned with anger.   Her husband is quite right, how does disorderly conduct merit this kind of treatment?  Quite often when someone ends up in the penal system we turn our backs on them because we assume guilt however, we should realize that how we treat those that are the most vulnerable is representative of the kind of society we live in.  No one deserves to be dehumanized in this manner, no matter what they have allegedly done.


No comments: