Police Defend the Right to Choke Marijuana Suspects

Watch this video of Mount Juliet, TN police officer Bill Cosby choking a marijuana suspect into unconsciousness during a traffic stop.

Officer Cosby apparently believed the suspect was trying to swallow marijuana, however nothing was found in his mouth and he subsequently passed a drug test, proving that he didn’t eat it. He just never had marijuana in his mouth. The video is so disturbing, a local judge refused to hear future cases brought by Cosby and the police chief had no choice but to fire him.

So you’d think that gratuitous police violence against a non-violent marijuana suspect would find no apologists. You’d hope that other officers would be universally disgusted by Officer Cosby’s deplorable example and support his dismissal. And you’d be wrong. I reviewed a comment thread on the case at PoliceOne.com and found that many officers believe choking non-violent marijuana suspects is necessary and even commendable:


The charges for the suspect should be reinstated and the officer should be commended for doing his job in a professional manner.
...
This is ridiculous. The officer did nothing wrong and a judge, prosecutor and chief are looking to hang him. It's no wonder we're losing cops by the dozens. Who wants to put their butt on the line when no one appreciates the job you do.
...
After viewing the video, the officer is not out of control or doing anything that isn't called for.


These comments imply that you could somehow die from eating marijuana:

The officer probably didn't want the guy to die over something as stupid as swallowing some dope.
...
Another Police Officer abandoned by his department because of fear of legal action from a criminal. Of course had he swallowed it and then died the family would have sued because the Police didnt choke it out of him.
...
I hope the Officer is cleared and gets a job at a real department. Also let the bad guys swallow the dope. With luck he will croak and save court costs.


This one admits that the choking appears malicious…then wishes the officer well.

That appears to be choking. The fact that it was called a vascular restraint makes it appear as "creative report writing." I pray for Cosby that he makes it through this experience.

This one recommends turning off your camera:

It has become an awareness to me that these dashcams are causing good cops to get into trouble or fired, so boys turn the damn things off.

This one endorses choking and stomping suspects, as long as they're out of the camera frame:

Hey brother...choke the asshole out if you are so inclined...stand on his trachea if you want...but how about bringing him to the back of your RMP [squad car]? Could you actually think that was something to get on film? Did you forget about the camera?

All of this really speaks for itself. To be fair, some comments were more reasonable, but the overall tone was that the officer shouldn’t have been disciplined. That is what real police officers believe, up to and including some of the violent and scary sentiments outlined above.

It is really just remarkable to imagine that those who would jettison any accountability for their own violent actions remain steadfast in their insistence that people who use marijuana for fun are dangerous thugs who deserve no mercy. That is the gaping chasm that often separates law enforcement’s self-imposed moral standards from those they apply to everyone else. It is a perfectly horrifying thing to behold, more so when one realizes that no effort was even made to conceal these vile sentiments from the public they serve.

Update: Chokings, mistakes, and misconduct aside, the fact that people commonly panic and eat their stash at the sight of police is troubling, isn't it? This needs to stop and I might be the only person who's taken this issue on, by writing Why You Shouldn't Try to Eat Your Marijuana If You're Pulled Over. Unfortunately, more dangerous drugs carry harsher sentences and a greater incentive for desperate people to risk an overdose rather than face prison time. Police use this as an excuse to choke us, but it's actually an exhibit in the absurdity of our drug policy.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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Look

You were not there. I was not there. Ive had to use the C method on a young teen who was about to eat a handful of oxy's. It all depends on circumstances. I would never do it for Marijuana, its only a mis and there is not much of a health risk. If the Marijuana was bagged it would not show up on a drug screen.

I think its halarious you linked comments from policeone.com Thats more less a website for officers to vent. Nothing should be taken seriously from the site. Sensationalism

I wasn't there?

Neither were any of the officers who said all those crazy things. They seem collectively willing to dispense with any and all accountability mechanisms, which only serves to enable those who would throttle suspects behind their squad cars. This hostile, insular climate explains a great deal about why some officers believe they can do whatever they want and still enjoy the support of their peers. There's no warning message on the site to the effect that they're all just "venting" and shouldn't be taken seriously.

As for your own actions, I understand. But the fact that a suspect would do such a thing just shows the limitations of using police and harsh laws to address drug abuse.

C clamp this...Looky

The "ventfull" commentary at PoliceOne ,shows LEO contempt for the police chief, the judge, and most directly, the citizen. Gee ,who'd a thunk it, a 1000%, cop a blue line,reaction.What I read, was not what anyone would regard as "hilarious". What I saw was an authoritarian "just doing his job".

It's The Norm....

Police brutality period.... The officers commenting is proof that most police officers have 3rd grade educations and obviously used to get their asses whipped on their gradeschool playground. Idiots...

You Cops

Suck

Video cameras for All Police Cars and Badge Cams

They have started it in Europe. Police will never be accountable until all of their actions are recorded on film

I propose and amendment to require all police to wear Badge Cams, (badges that have a built in video) that transmits not only to headquarters, but to an independent civilian monitoring organization.

That way, when the cops break the law in the course of their job, a citizen need only call the monitoring organization and request a review and copy of that badge cam's video.

I'm not surprised

After seeing the Denver Police force wearing the shirt that indicated that they were PROUD of beating the people outside the DNC, this really comes as no surprise.

Anyone who takes an oath to uphold UNCONSTITUTIONAL LAWs

Anyone who takes an oath to uphold UNCONSTITUTIONAL LAWs deserves a bad reputation.

It is not the officers who are bad to begin with. IT is the shitty laws that shouldn't have gotten passed, i.e. patriot act, drug war, and the thousands of liability laws and all other laws that are bullshit.

Fight Fire With Fire

What I saw was obvious brutality. Unfortunately, it was far from shocking. As one who has been harassed, arrested and incarcerated for "crimes against the people of blah, blah, blah", I understand exactly how little police officers actually do to protect and serve. I, personally, have been locked up for a victimless crime and had my bail-cash hidden from me so as to keep me behind bars. I know that cops are often the most spiteful and petty criminals of all. It seems that when one carries a badge and gun, he or she ceases to possess any characteristics of a human being.

My reccomendation is to mount your own camera. I guarantee that the moment the meat-head bully with a licence to carry a tax-payer-purchased firearm sees the little red light signifying "record", he or she will change his or her tune. I wonder why so many modern automobiles can have high-def TVs, in-dash GPS, and rear-view cameras, but none come equipped with cameras to record "routine traffic-stops". You see the lights, you hit the switch and "Action".

Way to go, Scott. Keep fighting the good fight.

- Jonathan Jacobs

All of your electronic

All of your electronic devices listed are optional, but I still say go ahead and mount the camera to record, as well.

There not only isn't a law against it, but it helps for things other than traffic tickets and encounters with your local police department.

It can be used to document unsafe driving, accidents, and also as a way of showing that law enforcement does other law breaking, like using lights/sirens to go through red lights.

I think what the officers

I think what the officers did was ridiculous. What if that that marijuana suspect didnt even have anything on him.. so he just gets choked out unconcious by a cop. and we wonder why people are losing respect for the police. "serving and protecting", pleease

how about that kid who go tased for nooo reason last year?

The comments on policeone.com are also just disturbing.
Its too funny the police officers actually think its possible for someone to DIE from swallowing weed. It's almost as funny as the cop who called 911 last year because he thought he was overdosing on pot brownies.

Maybe they should start teaching the police more about the drugs they are busting us for huh? but thennn they'd probably see ALLLL the reasons for it to be damn legal in the first place, and we can't just let people with power start believing that...

Thursday through Sunday,

Thursday through Sunday, they're invading my space
Tellin' me its for my sake, they're keepin' the streets safe
By gettin' all the drunks off of the highway
But I say man, that's a big fuckin' lie
It's all about the money from the D.U.I.'s
Otherwise they'd be parked out in front of this bar
Giving free breathalysers before we get in our cars
Instead they just hide about 3 miles away
And sit and wait for one of us to make a mistake
Drink a little to much and you'll be cuffed and stuffed
And probably roughed up if you complain enough
You'll be carted off to jail, in the land of the free
Another victim of the over-zealous J.P.D.
Now don't get me wrong, I don't mean disrespect
There are a lot of good cops, who serve and protect
And they boldly put their lives on the line
To protect our rights and give us peace of mind
But for every cop who thinks his badge is a crown
This song is for you, and I'll never bow down ...

And I'm mad as hell singing fuck the po-po

cheers to corey smith, haha

Choke Holds Can Be Deadly

Deaths from police choke holds are not uncommon.  The judge who barred Cosby from his courtroom understood that the use of a potentially deadly restraint is not justified when used against suspects who might try to swallow something as benign as marijuana.

Also, it’s obvious from the lab tests that Cosby couldn’t be certain that the suspect’s mouth initially contained any marijuana, so he essentially used physical force to perform an intrusive cavity search.  If Cosby had used a choke hold to search the suspect’s anus instead of his mouth, the nature of the abuse would have been made more apparent.  It was Officer Cosby’s evil nature and lack of professionalism that got him fired.

As for the authoritarian hate mongers who emptied their bowels on PoliceOne.com, statements such as these are a vivid reminder of why laws against police brutality exist.

No doubt these same thugs agree with and may even take their cues from the Bush administration’s torture policies against illegal combatants.  The Bush torture policy is all the more reason to make cops accountable in a really big way if they brutalize suspects.  If not, applying law enforcement Gitmo tactics against private American citizens will become the norm.

Giordano

Positions of power...

by their very nature, attract sadistic assholes. Even the good ones go bad because power always corrupts them, you can plainly see that from the cops' responses.

choke hold

Are the police forces of the USA being overrun by redneck pieces of shit? Protect and serve go catch a thief.

PoliceOne is a

"who's who" of Gestapo agents. There must be a reason why we can't post there, but you guys can come over here and post all you want to...

I was watching

a show about homicide detectives last night. A guy was shot in front of a huge crowd of people, but NO ONE would talk to the cops. The cops seemed to think those people were scared for their lives, but otherwise they were well liked and the people were just dying to talk to them. I laughed my ass off when these cops turned their backs, and I saw the looks on these peoples' faces. Some ran away when the cops approached them! Also, you could see the frustration on the homicide detectives' faces when they talked to the patrol cops. It was like they were angry because they knew that their excesses were to blame when no one would cooperate with them to solve a real crime!

Most people don't trust cops, or even like them, and it's because of scumbags like those who post on PoliceOne! If you would do your job correctly, instead of acting like redneck bullies in the throes of roid rage, maybe people would respect you and the job you do. Until that time comes (I have very little hope it ever will), people will solve their own problems and remain distrustful of police. After all, why would anyone help someone who, the very next day, might try to oppress them by choking them over a small baggie of cannabis? You did this to yourself, cops, and I don't feel the least bit sorry for you...

Why Trust Cops ?

Please are you kidding , did you hear about the cops who shot the mayors Two dogs. Please don't even get me started. If the police want respect form their citizens they need to stand up and say the drug war is a waste of their time and our money.

Another reason.

Another reason people do not like, and do not trust, cops is the lack of even the smallest bit of investigation when someone has suffered a break-in robbery. This happened to my son a few years ago, his home was broken into and valuables ans guns were stolen. My son called the cops, they came out, they didn't bring any fingerprint kits, the didn't do any real investigation, they as much as told him he'd never get any of the stuff back and if he wanted to try to get it bakc he'd have to talk to alll the pawnshops in this and the next county himself (he did that, and did get a few items of the stolen stuff back, eventually, but nowhere near all of it). That visit the day of the robbery was the last he heard from the police department, tho about 6 months later the cops in the next county did call him to say they'd recovered one of the stolen guns in a drug bust. The cops are absolutely gung ho when it comes to even the smallest pot bust, but do any real investigation of any real crime? Forgedaboudit!

We've had 19 cop...distrusters...

And 1 swatzi, to this point in the commentary. I guess "Looky the C- Clamper" felt unloved. At least he's a brave ,little facist authoritarian.

Police the Police

After reading so many stories like these, I ran out of excuses for many crimes "Law Enforcement" officers committ. As of November 1, in the state of Virginia, I am policing the police. I have outfitted my surveillance van ( I am a Private Investigator) with 6 additional PTZ cameras with IR lenses, as well as parabolic mikes. I will no longer turn a blind eye to SS style tactics used by police officers. When I was an instructor for a popular Martial Arts studio, I gave free lessons to local and state police for years. If I had know then what I do now, I would have thrown them out. I know ALL of them are not bad, but with the secretive and often maffia style mentality they have for anything a "cop" has committed, it is no longer feasible to give any of them a "pass". Officers beware, if you are in Virginia, you better mind your P's and Q's.......I WILL be watching, and recording. Now that being said, I know many cops will harrass me, and if anything "goes down" and they think they can remove the video tapes (its actually a PC with DVR), they would be sorely mistaken. I have built in a Sprint wireless internet modem into the recording PC, which transmits 5 minute clips of recording at a time. So now I have myself covered, I would truely like to see how they react.

POLICE IN VA, if you do anything you shouldnt, you will see DVDs mailed to your department, as well as the ACLU, local and national news networks, as well as a few trusted friends.

Strong backs and weak minds can not be afforded or tolerated

Bringing all of this drivel into a perspective that clearly makes any extra-judiacial force discussion irrelevant is the subject of this post. The New Chief, the "good" cops, and anyone else who choose's to defend the actions of rogue cops, or second guess the decisions of the Judge are wrong but, in a way missed by everyone.

Any government entity is in fact a corporation in America and as a result must obey laws, and must be liable for all actions, decisions, and obfucasions committed in their name. This regards any agent, officer, employee, contractor, liasion, partner, delegate, etc that acts at their behest. This makes the government that is funded by citizens through tax decrees responsible for maintaining and reducing liabilities due to their exposure by all of its employees.

The Chief, the "good" cops, the city's attorneys, the Mayor, have no right to place the citizens tax funded capitol at risk through their arrogance. The fact that aggregious acts by over-zealous cops are some of the largest expenditure items out of budget for municipalities causing bankruptcys, cuts in services, and cuts in bond ratings. Interfering in the investigation, publicly stating that you back the actions unconditionally of cops who have brought exposure to the city of this magnitude is essentially raising the ultimate financial amount the city will be losing.

Looking back what Officer "Liable" has done is to take the law into his hands (literally) and choked the life out of the city. When this town says it cannot budget services it will do the people wise to remember that all of the agents for the city said that they were satisfied that assaulting a citizen over unfounded suspicions is certainly within the interpretations of the Constitution.

Good cop, bad cop it does not matter when your cops break the budget, the law, and the that line between cop and crimminal.

This sort of thing puts everyone at risk; cops too.

When I see comments like these from cops or people suggesting that other officers "turn off the camera" and break the law by using brutality and unnecssary force it makes me feel bad for our country. Any cop who thinks this is okay should be fired; this canot be tolerated. These sorts of actions DIRECTLY correlate with the fear, mistrust, and hate for cops on the street and put cops and the public in more danger, which I will explain below.

It really pissed me off because I have cops in my family and they are good cops, they serve and protect and don't think that they are little fascist dictators. It puts good cops at risk because it makes people think all cops are CRMINALS like these cops and that maybe they should fight or shoot first rather than possibly being choked, beaten or killed.

Hopefully the next time some ignorant ass criminal decides to waste a cop (for whatever reason) it will be one of these 'criminals with a badge' after one of these type of assholes who suggests "turning off thje camera" has turned off the camera....Then his buddies can deliver a flag to the dead cop's wife and kids and say "unfortunately we don't know who did this because officer douchebag had turned off his dashcam against departmental policy during the stop."

The drug war is a racket, pure and simple and bad cops who suggest things like "turning off the dashcam" are basically the same thing as pedaphiles and child abusers, because it's abusing their authority to get off on abusing someone who is helpless...It's not the cop's job to punish people, that is the court's job; bugt unfortunately as we all know there are cops who get off on doing just that.....Just like a child molester cops who do this are basicaly in a position of trust and their victims are helpless. When cops commit crimes and brutality under the color of authority it breaks that same trust, that same social compact and they should be thought of in almost the same way.

To the good cops out there who believe in the rule of law and the consitution and protecting the rights of citizen as muc as catching REAL criminals, I take my hat off to you sir. TO you asshole thug cops: may you reap what you sow.

The next time someone kills

The next time someone kills a family because they were high or some pice of crap breaks into your house to support their drug habit, don't bother calling the cops because they will be too afraid to do their jobs to protect your ungrateful behinds. James Anders had several prior drug arrests and he happened to find a whore of an attorney that blew it up on the media to get a payday. Ambulance chasing must be getting too hard.
Protect yourselves now if the government doesn't take away your rights to that before long.

Exactly!

Exactly!

What?

"The next time someone kills a family because they were high"
What?
Might want do some research into the effects of drugs.

raid

Don't do that anymore.

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