The issue of a journalist’s behavior in situations of extreme peril is always a thorny issue. Should they document a man’s suffering or try to help it? Where do journalistic obligations stop and human obligations begin? Will anybody notice if they Photoshop some more smoke into this thing?
(Oh, we’re sure these charges have absolutely nothing to do with pictures of policemen blindsiding students with pepper spray. Perfectly coincidental.)
But for Michael Felletter, a photographer for the DAILY COLLEGIAN at Penn State, his mere presence at a riot became a matter of a much different issue: criminality. The PSU student originally faced charges of disorderly conduct and failure to disperse upon official order from the police, but the charges were dropped last week when the charging detective missed a court date. End of story? Oh, no, no sir; the Centre County DA, Michael Madeira, re-filed the same charges Wednesday, keeping this farce alive.
The police maintain that this isn’t a First Amendment issue, and that Felletter just wouldn’t leave when told to. That’s fine, in theory. Perhaps there’d be some merit to that claim if it weren’t for one giant honking legal misstep in the filing of the criminal complaint, one that the prosecuting attorneys probably want back. Read more…
It looked bad last month when Houston police were accused of beating Donald Driver’s father after a routine traffic stop. This, I suppose, is why though the media is allowed to jump to conclusions, the legal system isn’t allowed to. The three police officers have been cleared, and Marvin Driver Jr.’s claims were found to be baseless, according to an internal review.
Medical information did not point to a recent beating, and two independent witnesses did not observe any altercation, according to the report. The officers have been returned to active duty, but this does not preclude a civil suit. Still, take with a grain of salt accusations made by anyone through a spokesman named Quanell X.
You’ll have to excuse Packers WR Donald Driver if he decides to fly down to Houston instead of play football this weekend. His father, Marvin Driver, is still hospitalized after being beaten into unconsciousness during an arrest over traffic tickets. Family members and a community activist allege that Marvin was in “perfect condition” when the officers arrived, but sometime after that, while in police custody, the 56-year-old man was beaten so severely that he was admitted to a local hospital in critical condition and listed as “unresponsive.”
(We really do not recommend putting a bat anywhere near Donald Driver and the police officers right now.)
There are no pleasant details about the incident; there never are. But as the HOUSTON CHRONICLE reports, the circumstances surrounding this alleged assault paint the officers involved in a particularly unsavory light: Read more…
With the Champions League final tonight between Chelsea and Manchester United, the LONDON SUN reports on the police tactics to be used by Moscow police if *gasp* one of the 50,000 Brits on the trip steps out of line.
(Nude ice showers? bed chains? A soccer match or bootleg fetish porn video?)
DRUNKEN football yobs who cause trouble at the Champions League Final will be stripped naked and given ice-cold showers. Russian authorities said boozy fans will be herded into special mobile cages and ferried to Moscow’s feared “Sobering Houses”. Anyone resisting police will be chained to beds for the night.