Tuesday, April 1, 2008

The Case of Anderson Tate Jr.

I researched that story of the man who died in police custody after swallowing a bag of cocaine. Judging from the information that I could find, this seems like a case of media bias. The press seems to be predisposed to take the side of a black criminal, rather than being impartial or, God-forbid, take the side of the police. I could not find a copy of the video, but I did get a description of it from several news articles. I will reprint one of those articles below which was written when the man's mother filed a lawsuit against the City of Fort Pierce, FL.

A federal civil rights lawsuit recently was filed by the mother of a Black man who swallowed crack cocaine when he was arrested and died in police custody because his pleas for help were ignored by officers.

Anderson Tate Jr., 22, was pulled over by a state trooper in Fort Pierce, FL, in December 1996 for not having a license plate, attorney Guy Rubin said. He swallowed the crack cocaine he was carrying, according to Rubin. When taken to jail, Tate's pleas for help reportedly were ignored, and he was taunted in a three-hour ordeal captured on video by a surveillance camera. He went into convulsions and died later at a hospital.

"It was a tragic death," Tate's mother, Virginia Barrett, said. "You can see what they do to young Blacks who go to jail."

Her lawsuit seeks unspecified damages from the officers involved, the sheriffs office, the city of Fort Pierce and the Florida Highway Patrol.

The St. Lucie County Jail surveillance videotape shows one officer dancing a jig as Tate, strapped in a chair, begged for help.

Two officers were fired, one was demoted and four were suspended, attorney Stuart M. Address said. Six of the officers are White; the other is Hispanic.

Prosecutors are investigating whether to bring criminal charges against them.

I could not find any articles indicating that the police involved were charged with a crime, nor could I find any evidence that the mother had won the lawsuit. Unless you know otherwise, I assume that the police were not charged with a crime and that the mother did not win her lawsuit. Don't you find it odd that the allegations were reported repeatedly, but I can not find mention of the outcome?

First I would like to say that the articles that I read about this case all tried to infer “racism”. The mainstream media jumps at any opportunity to try and prove that racism is the cause of many of societies problems. I saw no evidence of that in what I read, besides the fact that the victim was black and the police were mostly white and the mother alleges racism.

Second, if no charges were brought against the cops and the mother's civil suit did not prevail, I must assume that the cops had a good reason for what they did that day. I could find no such explanations in any of the articles that I found. To the contrary, I found several related articles written by college professors, the ACLU and Amnesty International who all wrote about racism and police brutality.

Third, although I didn't see the video, I can imagine what went on judging by the articles that I read. I'm sure that the mainstream media were only too happy to repeatedly play that video as an example of racism and police brutality in our country.

Now, you may ask me how I could come to any other conclusion after reading about a video of a black man tied up and thrashing about and saying that he was dying and needed help, while mostly white police officers laughed at him and mocked him until he died. I am hoping to shed some light on how society, particularly the youth, is being deceived and manipulated by the mainstream media, universities, public schools, and the arts. In this case they were repeatedly playing a seemingly damning video of police brutality, without offering any explanation of the police's behavior. It's quite convincing, but then; How come no charges were brought against the police despite charges from the ACLU and Amnesty International, who were calling for investigations? How come a celebrated attorney, Ellis Rubin, did not prevail in his civil suit against the town of Fort Pierce, FL? And how come there were no articles that I could find about the subsequent investigation that apparently cleared the police. How come I could find no articles on the outcome of the lawsuit? How come the only thing that YOU remember seeing, is a video of a black man tied up and begging for help while he was being mocked by the white police?

Well, I will relate a few personal experiences of mine to offer the “other side” of this story that I was unable to find in the press reports. Of course this doesn't have anything to do with the actual case, only my personal experience in similar situations that offer possible explanations.

I have been arrested and locked up about ten times in my life, in various States across the country. Usually, they hold you overnight in a cell in the local police station. On average there are about four to six cells and on a busy night they can put as many as 4 people in each cell. One of the first things that they do when you are being booked, is to ask you if you have any medical problems that require immediate attention or require special medication. If you answer yes, you are immediately seen by a nurse who decides if you need to go to the hospital or need special medication. I have to assume that Anderson Tate Jr. did not request medical attention at this time.

On at least two occasions when I was in jail, there was a prisoner in one of the cells who was raising quite a ruckus. They would scream for hours, thrash about, bang on the walls floor and bars and jump up and down. They would constantly call out to the police who would largely ignore them. They would say that they were sick, that they needed a doctor, they would say that they were dying and needed help. If they became so violent that the cops thought that they might hurt themselves or the other prisoners, they were taken out of the cell and hog-tied and chained to a bench until they calmed down. I assume that they were either very drunk or very high on drugs, the cops seemed to be used to this type of behavior. They eventually calmed down, but sometimes they ranted and raved for hours before they tired out. I believe that this kind of behavior is very common in jail when people are first arrested. If I had a video camera, I could have made a similar video that night and perhaps two or three nights out of every week.

Another possible explanation for why the cops ignored Anderson, was because they thought that he might want to be taken to the hospital, where he knows that he will be more comfortable than jail and he is sure to be given drugs(medication) to calm him down. He may be withdrawing from heroin and his only chance of getting drugs, would be to fool the cops into thinking that he is sick, so that they would send him to the hospital. Heroin addicts will do anything, if they are withdrawing and they think that there is a chance of getting heroine or morphine or codeine or oxycotin. By the way, California now allows heroin addicts to be detoxed in a hospital after being arrested. This came about after someone died during his heroin withdrawal in jail. As a result, police are now more reluctant to arrest heroin addicts in CA, because of the extra time and expense required to care for them. The county Jail in L.A. has a floor that is a hospital ward. My friend Jay-Jay in California, had a virtual “get-out-of-jail-free-card” after her kidneys failed and she required dialysis. Even if the cops caught her with heroine, which is a felony in CA, they would let her go because her medical condition presented too many problems for them, and they would rather let her go than deal with it. Don't feel to happy for her, she died from her heroine addiction. Maybe if she got locked up she would have gotten clean, gone to a rehab, got a kidney transplant, and had a second chance. Who knows, maybe not.

Once, when I was living in Mission Viejo, CA, I almost let a girl die in my apartment, because she told me that she was having an allergic reaction to “medication”, and I didn't believe her. I almost didn't take her to the hospital. Her name was Christine. She was a heroine addict but, off of heroin for six months, because she just got out of jail. She just got out of jail the day before, and was stranded in San Diego, after being imprisoned for about 6 months. She was supposed to come to my apartment in Mission Viejo when she got out. Instead, she decided to call the police and tell them that she wanted to commit suicide. This was a ploy to get admitted to the hospital (nut house) and to get medication. The cops took her to a hospital, just like she wanted, and they gave her lots of medication just like she planned. They released her the next day and gave her a bottle of pills to take with her.

The next day, when I got home from work, there she was, waiting outside my door. She said that she hitch hiked from San Diego. After about a half hour she started telling me that she was sick. She said that it was an allergic reaction to the medication that they gave her at the hospital. She said that she must have taken too much. She begged me to take her to the hospital. I did not believe her. I thought that she was “faking it”, in an effort to get more drugs at the hospital. I was already mad at her for “relapsing” and getting drugs at the hospital in San Diego. She started shaking and breathing heavy. I still thought that she was faking and I refused to take her to the hospital. I was very angry at her for putting on such a show. I told her to call 911 if she was really sick, but she did not. I was now really convinced that she was “faking it”. Then she started making this terrible noise, like her airway was restricted and she couldn't get enough air to breathe. I got scared and I rushed her to the hospital. By the time we got to the hospital she could barely walk and barely breathe. It turned out that she was having an allergic reaction to the medication, and her airway was closing up. They immediately gave her a shot of something, (I think it was called epinephrine), and soon she started to breath normally. It was a close call, a few more minutes and she could have died. She could have died because I didn't believe her at first. She was “the girl that cried wolf”. I understand how come the cops didn't believe Anderson Tate Jr. I might have done the same thing.

All I am trying to say is how eager the press is to portray the cops in a fashion that makes them seem brutal and racist. Apparently, after being exposed to this bias all of your life, you too are eager to believe it. I am trying to open your eyes to what is going on, after all, you do claim to be “open minded”. Please give it some thought.

1 comment:

DaLadiiBoss said...

Sadly I am 3 years late but what's even more sad is that YOU DON"T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT. Charges were brought against those cops and YES, his mother did win her civil suit. Anderson Tate was NOT a heroin or crack addict, HE SOLD IT. In an effort to conceal that he was in possession of cocaine, he swallowed it. REGARDLESS, it does not make him any less HUMANE nor did he deserve to die that way. Although the actual intent is unknown (whether it was an act of racism or not), from watching the video and hearing those officers confessions its obvious that they were being cruel.

KNOW your facts before you start making these kind of FUCKED UP blogs.

Thanks ...

-Anderson's Cousin