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Militarization of the police?

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RCDtpr

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Sheep Dog AT said:
What I'm saying is that this could have been avoided (Sat I think) when the other police force came in to take over.  It may be too late now I grant you.  I fear it's going to get worse before it gets better.

I reiterate....what would YOU have done to prevent this apparently preventable riot?

I'm not trying to be confrontational.....but armchair quarterbacking something you have no clue about.....is stupid.
 

Scoobie Newbie

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I would have let the new police force move in and run the show without a curfew.  If mass rioting and looting fired up I would have then amped up the response.  Things got worse when a curfew was put in place.  It's all about escalation of force.  I'm not saying not to have riot police, but you have them out of sight and if needed call them in.
 

Nemo888

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Bruce Monkhouse said:
We did it for several years after I arrived in 2RCHA in 1978 also.

Nemo,.......if only you had a clue.........
Perhaps asking the military or police what powers they want could end up bankrupting other equally important departments. Do we need as much militarization as we have now? When was the last riot? Fixing social problems by turning police into shock troops gives you Ferguson.

Don't you have some cows to milk? Debate is not name calling.
 

RCDtpr

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Sheep Dog AT said:
I would have let the new police force move in and run the show without a curfew.  If mass rioting and looting fired up I would have then amped up the response.  Things got worse when a curfew was put in place.  It's all about escalation of force.  I'm not saying not to have riot police, but you have them out of sight and if needed call them in.

There wasn't a curfew initially...it was brought into place on Saturday in response to the rioting....

There were also no riot police the first night and only a handful on the second night.  As we have all seen, that wasn't exactly effective.

Like I said man...armchair quarterbacking this is beyond dumb....if there was a solution it would have been found already.

The rioting was never about the kid being shot.  It was local street gangs doing what they do best under the guise of "protest."  The rest of the town just adopted mob mentality and it went from there.  Look at Vancouver and Toronto, all it takes is a very small group of people to cause everyone to delve into chaos.....and nothing short of violence will stop it when it gets going.
 

Robert0288

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RCDcpl said:
The rioting was never about the kid being shot.  It was local street gangs doing what they do best under the guise of "protest." 

George Wallace said:
In the meantime, thousands of outsiders/non-residents are flocking to Ferguson to protest. 

This place has become a beacon for anyone who wants to cause trouble, loot, or riot.  And with more professional protesters and wanna be looters on their way this will continue to spiral.
 

Kilo_302

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Robert0288 said:
This place has become a beacon for anyone who wants to cause trouble, loot, or riot.  And with more professional protesters and wanna be looters on their way this will continue to spiral.

RCDcpl said:
There wasn't a curfew initially...it was brought into place on Saturday in response to the rioting....

There were also no riot police the first night and only a handful on the second night.  As we have all seen, that wasn't exactly effective.

Like I said man...armchair quarterbacking this is beyond dumb....if there was a solution it would have been found already.

The rioting was never about the kid being shot.  It was local street gangs doing what they do best under the guise of "protest."  The rest of the town just adopted mob mentality and it went from there.  Look at Vancouver and Toronto, all it takes is a very small group of people to cause everyone to delve into chaos.....and nothing short of violence will stop it when it gets going.


Armchair quarterbacking is dumb, and yet you seem to have this wrapped up into a neat little narrative. "Local street gangs"? I've seen footage from just after the shooting, and outrage amongst average people was already palpable. His body was left uncovered in the street for hours. Witnesses have said he had his hands up when he was shot, and he was definitely unarmed. Against a back drop of what seem to be regular incidents of police shooting unarmed African-Americans, it's only understandable that frustration spilled over into the streets.

This the kind policing the residents of Ferguson are deaing with:

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/08/15/the-day-ferguson-cops-were-caught-in-a-bloody-lie.html#

The militarization of police is an issue in the US and Canada, but more often than not, the target of this type of overbearing use of authority in the US are minority communities. Just compare the response to these protests to the response to Clive Bundy and his militia friends. Those guys were definitely well armed, and openly threatened to use force against law enforcement who were attempting to remove cattle from public land. There are pics all over the place of these militia guys actually staring down their sights at federal agents. Now imagine what would have happened if the citizens of Ferguson had done the same and shown up to their protests carrying AR-15s. It's a clear double standard, and you're kidding yourself if you think it isn't noticed. Cops in the US (as recently revealed) have far more to fear from racist white conservatives packing serious weaponry than black gang members and Islamic extremists (both of which are used to justify the fact that cities of 21,000 "need" MRAPs).




 

JesseWZ

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Nemo888 said:
All this riot gear, assault weapons and armoured vehicles is a waste of tax money. We all like playing with toys. But at then end of the day in my city close to 90% of duties are traffic. There are only 27 crimes per officer per year in Ottawa, roughly 2 crimes per officer a month. With a 280 million dollar budget that is 7000$ per crime.  In the last decade crime has dropped 25% and costs have increased 250%. Ottawa could lose some fat off the police budget. Better be polite on that next traffic stop or citizens will be asking for those budget cuts


You must make a lot of friends...

Are you an Ottawa area copper? Where are you getting those statistics? Are those calls for service or actual criminal acts where charges were laid at the end of the investigation? Many calls for service result in either an unfounded complaint following an investigation or are non crime related (Dispute Mediation, Apprehending Mental Health, Minor Liquor/Noise violations, etc). All of the above cost time and tax-payer money. Crimes per month is a lousy way to rate the busyness of a particular service. There is much more to modern policing then just arresting criminals and laying charges. Basing a stat of $7000 per crime is ludicrous nonsense. There is a much wider spectrum of what police are expected to do then simply responding to crime. What about crime prevention? Community Relations? Recertification Training for members? Calls for service that didn't involve a crime or were blown out of proportion by a panicked resident...



 

George Wallace

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Nemo888 said:
Perhaps asking the military or police what powers they want could end up bankrupting other equally important departments. Do we need as much militarization as we have now? When was the last riot? Fixing social problems by turning police into shock troops gives you Ferguson.

Don't you have some cows to milk? Debate is not name calling.

Please.  You really have no clues.


The comment on milking cows in this debate is a further indicator that you are sadly lacking in knowledge on these matters.  Name calling innuendo on your part is also not a part of this debate. 

The Police force, like the Fire Department, and all Emergency Services must be prepared for the worse case scenarios.  What you are advocating in hamstringing the Police, and in essence all Emergency Services, amounts to advocating anarchy.  If you want Chaos to reign supreme, then your suggestions are valid.  If you don't, then we must prepare for worse case scenarios. 

Most here will agree, that the case of Ferguson has spiraled down the toilet and has been grossly mismanaged.  The steps taken by the Governor of the State to impose a curfew was an attempt to quiet the situation that was inflamed by the local police force.  Anarchy made that decision a good reason to up the Police presence and now call in his National Guard.  All of this hinders the legal investigation underway and keeps the truth from all.  Once the criminal and professional protester elements are removed from the equation and peace is returned to more level headed citizens, the matter may find a reasonable conclusion.  Until such time, we will continue to see more of the same on both sides.
 
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Robert0288

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Witnesses have said he had his hands up when he was shot, and he was definitely unarmed
Even under most Canadian Police forces use of force policies, there are circumstances where shooting an unarmed individual is justifiable.  And not all the information is out.  As you said, this is what witnesses have claimed to see.  The same witnesses who didn't come forward for a couple of days and where coached on what to say.  If you don't believe me, take a look at the witness statements made on CNN live prior to going to the police, spot some of the legal articulation in there.  It shouldn't be difficult.

Just compare the response to these protests to the response to Clive Bundy and his militia friends.
It's like comparing apples to rocks.  I have no experience with dealing with this, but from my limited perspective; One is an armed militia with Waco-esque connotations acting in a passive resistant manner (despite the rifles and the extreme risk), in a isolated area with only people who want to be there.  Time and Distance are your friend for de-escalation. 

In an urban rioting environment (which I am outside my lanes for)  You have to also balance welfare of the people who live on that street, the damage to local business and a riot is an active environment.  You can't create as much time and distance because it will only give looters more stores to target.

In addition, the Ottawa Police Service has hardly any cost recovery for events outside the normal scope of community policing.  For example all the protests on parliament hill, Foreign Dignitaries etc...

If a police force is offered a $750,000 MRAP for $1000, I think they would be silly not to acquire it.  If only for the fact they could probably sell the parts and make a profit off of them.
 

George Wallace

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Kilo_302 said:
The militarization of police is an issue in the US and Canada, but more often than not, the target of this type of overbearing use of authority in the US are minority communities.

Sad fact is, it is usually a crime and poverty ridden minority community/slum that will necessitate police responses a larger percentage of the time than the Upper and Middle Class communities.  Claims of Racism are likely less accurate than the criminal or income status* of the persons being stopped by authorities.  (* Lower income status would not mean targeting by the police, but rather the fact that of 'derelict' or 'homeless' persons requiring assistance or attention. )
 

RCDtpr

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Kilo_302 said:
Armchair quarterbacking is dumb, and yet you seem to have this wrapped up into a neat little narrative. "Local street gangs"? I've seen footage from just after the shooting, and outrage amongst average people was already palpable. His body was left uncovered in the street for hours. Witnesses have said he had his hands up when he was shot, and he was definitely unarmed. Against a back drop of what seem to be regular incidents of police shooting unarmed African-Americans, it's only understandable that frustration spilled over into the streets.

This the kind policing the residents of Ferguson are deaing with:

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/08/15/the-day-ferguson-cops-were-caught-in-a-bloody-lie.html#

The militarization of police is an issue in the US and Canada, but more often than not, the target of this type of overbearing use of authority in the US are minority communities. Just compare the response to these protests to the response to Clive Bundy and his militia friends. Those guys were definitely well armed, and openly threatened to use force against law enforcement who were attempting to remove cattle from public land. There are pics all over the place of these militia guys actually staring down their sights at federal agents. Now imagine what would have happened if the citizens of Ferguson had done the same and shown up to their protests carrying AR-15s. It's a clear double standard, and you're kidding yourself if you think it isn't noticed. Cops in the US (as recently revealed) have far more to fear from racist white conservatives packing serious weaponry than black gang members and Islamic extremists (both of which are used to justify the fact that cities of 21,000 "need" MRAPs).

Witnesses stated he had his hands up?  Open and shut case then....witnesses have never been known to lie ever.  People hate the police, more so in economically challenged neighbourhoods as that's typically where the crime is and therefore where the police are.

Members of the African American community are very quick to throw their ethnicity in the face of police when it's convenient for them.  I can't tell you the amount of times I've had the line "you're just doing this because I'm black" with no basis to their argument whatsoever.  Last week alone I had one guy claim I only arrested him because he's black when I found him in the middle of assaulting someone.  That same shift I was accused at 330 in the morning of only pulling another member of the community over because he's black.  He knew that I couldn't see into the car to see if he was black or whate or purple, he just made the commotion in hopes I'd back down.  His passengers then jumped on the bandwagon and I had 5 people aggressively accusing me of being racist.

Cops have shot unarmed white people too....people were mad....they didn't tear up their communities though.

As for a town of 21000 people needing an MRAP...well I've never been to Ferguson so I can't say one way or the other.  Unless you've spent time there...neither can you.
 
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sandyson

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An observation: seems to me that police forces are a recent phenomena.  The army was the only 'police' a couple of centuries ago.  The militarization of policing is being noticed at the same time as the military are being 'policified'. i.e. adopting policing techniques in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Are the two forces coming together?  Treasury might ask why do we need both the RCMP and the CF?  Why not combine them and save money?  >:D
 

Fishbone Jones

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Bit of a side track here.

More has come out on the victim.

He was involved in a convenience store robbery on the same day. http://www.torontosun.com/videos/3733006765001

He also doesn't look like the same person in the picture that is being circulated by the family and press.

He is quite the imposing looking big boy, in reality.

Just observations. Not coming down on either side.

Even though it had nothing to do with the actual stop, it sure changed the picture I had in my mind of the cherub that was a victim of 'wanton police brutality'. Things appear a little more plausible in relation to the shooting now.

Let's just hope the cop gets a fair hearing and trial, and doesn't become an expedient way for someone like Sharpton to burn on the extremist pyre of race relations, if he is found not guilty.

edit-spelling
 

jpjohnsn

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I going to stay miles away from the situation in Ferguson but I did want to comment on the overall appearance of militarization among the police.  After my dad got out of the army he became a cop for a few years.  I respect the hell out of the men and women who do that job but the law enforcement in the city I live in has shifted further and further into a Hollywood version of law enforcement. 

We have our own tactical unit that seems to treat every problem as a proverbial nail in need of hammering.  As one of the cities with one of the lowest crime rates in the country, they get called out WAY more than I have ever heard of anyplace else.  And I got ringside seats to two of their operations - one of which was little more than I want to experience again.

So,  in my condo building there was a guy renting a unit who the rest of us were pretty sure was dealing weed.  Aside from have way too much foot traffic going in and out of his place, the place started reeking of the stuff.  The cops knew about it but nothing really happened until one evening, I'm sitting down to supper  when we hear all kinds of glass breaking, the door being knocked down and all kinds of indistinct yelling.  We're freaked because we think it's some gang-thing when we discover it was the tactical unit.  Everyone in that apartment was arrested - all released except one visitor who was in possession of stolen property.  No drug changes laid or weapons found and the tenant, a paralegic, returned home.  [As an aside, did you know having a tactical unit destroy a rental unit isn't grounds for eviction according to the Landlord/Tenant rights board?]

Okay, with drugs involved, you can't be too careful but we were pretty sure the place had been under surveillance for a while so I'm not entirely sure what they thought they'd find.  But, I'm not going to second guess them.

Smash-cut to 8 months later.  Sitting on my balcony which is at the rear of the building.  I hear a strange noise, get up and look over the side to see half-a-dozen tactical guys stacked up working their way down the side of the building towards that rental unit again.  One of the guys looks up and points his C8 at me for what seemed like forever before waving me back.  I went in and got my wife and kid as far away in the unit as we could before the glass breaking, door busting and yelling.  This time, however, they decided to use enough distraction devices to sound like automatic gunfire that created enough smoke to fill the building and set off the fire alarms - and did I mention the dogs?  We're stuck between wondering if the building is on fire or if we're going to be hit by a stray round or chewed up by dogs.  The building eventually empties out until the fire dept gets there and clears us to go back in.  And out come the tactical guys wheeling the same guy in the wheelchair again.  No weapons were reported to have been found but drugs were.  The guy was definitely going to jail.

By the way, did you know that having a tactical team bust up a rental unit TWICE isn't grounds for eviction?  The landlord eventually got the guy out and everything is tranquil once again.  For the record, it really is a nice neighbourhood - this was just an anomoly.  The current tenants of that unit are great people.

My point is that the other people in the building were far more frightened by the cops then we ever were of the bad guy or the company he kept.  And the tactical response escalated a LOT in less than a year.    Again, there might have been some intelligence that suggested going in harder the second time but I can't see what might have led them to that conclusion considering what they actually found.  I'm not a JBT-fearing, tinfoil hat wearing conspiracy theorist but what I've seen with my own eyes does cause me some concern as to where this is headed.
 

George Wallace

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Sorry to hear that you have had the rare occasion to have witnessed a Tactical Unit take down an individual, and even rarer occasion to witness it a second time.  Most of us have never witnessed such an event.  The only times I have, have been in Training that I was a participant; not the same thing at all.
 

Bruce Monkhouse

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More frightened because the cops came in daylight with guns in plain sight.........whereas your 'friend' may not have thought twice about shooting you in cold blood to protect the commerce of those 'coming and going'.
 

jpjohnsn

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Bruce Monkhouse said:
More frightened because the cops came in daylight with guns in plain sight.........whereas your 'friend' may not have thought twice about shooting you in cold blood to protect the commerce of those 'coming and going'.
I'm just trying to do an apples to apples comparison here.  Same guy, same apartment, similar reason for executing the warrant but two different levels of response separated by 8 months.  Did they go in harder the second time because they had some reason to suspect he might now be armed?  Were they worried that, after the last time, he was more likely to be armed this time?  Was it a case of using more because they had more - and, by this last one, was it something new to the inventory that they would have used the first time OR just shiny new toys to play with?

Like I said, I respect the police and give them the benefit of the doubt whenever possible but, apples to something as close to apples as possible,  it still leaves me wondering.
 

RCDtpr

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Sending out tac teams costs money.  They employed the team because there was a need to.

Too many people think, especially when it comes to police, that if it's not in plain sight....it's not there.  None of us know why the tac team deployed to that place....and none of us ever will.  So why sit there and try and compare it to anything?

I'll never understand the second guessing of police.  Would you question the fire dept if they sent a couple trucks to a little fire?  How about questioning a coy commander if he sent a full platoon when it appears at face value a section could handle the task?

Too many people watch cops, law and order etc, and think they are policing experts these days.
 

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jpjohnsn said:
I'm just trying to do an apples to apples comparison here.  Same guy, same apartment, similar reason for executing the warrant but two different levels of response separated by 8 months.  Did they go in harder the second time because they had some reason to suspect he might now be armed?  Were they worried that, after the last time, he was more likely to be armed this time?  Was it a case of using more because they had more - and, by this last one, was it something new to the inventory that they would have used the first time OR just shiny new toys to play with?

Like I said, I respect the police and give them the benefit of the doubt whenever possible but, apples to something as close to apples as possible,  it still leaves me wondering.

Or here is a crazy idea, maybe they had more information?! As crazy as that sounds, the police do not randomly pick a house to do forced entries. Your local drug unit would have done several hours/days of surveillance, spoken to informants and relied on information they already knew (street checks, past arrests etc) and then applied for a search warrant, with an appendix to request forced entry. It’s not an easy task and not something the courts will allow if there isn't enough grounds to BELIEVE a criminal offence is/has occurred and generally forced entries are only permitted for high risk individuals or where weapons are BELIEVED to be present.
 

JesseWZ

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WR said:
Or here is a crazy idea, maybe they had more information?! As crazy as that sounds, the police do not randomly pick a house to do forced entries. Your local drug unit would have done several hours/days of surveillance, spoken to informants and relied on information they already knew (street checks, past arrests etc) and then applied for a search warrant, with an appendix to request forced entry. It’s not an easy task and not something the courts will allow if there isn't enough grounds to BELIEVE a criminal offence is/has occurred and generally forced entries are only permitted for high risk individuals or where weapons are BELIEVED to be present.

Truth!

Forced (or "no knock") entries must be authorized by a warrant. If it's good enough for a learned Judge, it's good enough for me, and should be good enough for the arm-chair quarterbacks out there. Drug houses in particular can be quite dangerous and the owner/occupants often have a "prepared position."  Not just for defense against cops, but against other nefarious persons (Grow Rips being the token example).
 
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