Alex Blaze

Police who Beat Gay Men Get Fired, but Will They Get Charged?

Filed By Alex Blaze | March 26, 2011 4:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: black, brutality, Colorado, Denver, LGBT, LGBT Latinos, men, people of color, police, violence

Police beat two gay men in 2009 in Denver, one for using the women's restroom and the other for calling shawn-johnson.pnghis father and telling him police were beating his companion. The two men were hospitalized with severe injuries. The police then filed false reports saying that their victims had initiated the attack and the Manager of Safety, Ron Perea, suspended the officers for a few days for lying on their police report (the entire incident was caught on camera) and said that their actions were basically justified (because police officers often believe that no violence that their buddies exact on the public can ever be excessive).

Perea resigned last year after outcry since he overplayed his hand in this situation by making the common argument for police brutality - that the victims were the ones who started it and who are you going to believe? - when there was video documentation of the contrary. People are often willing to take what the police say at face value and ignore their victims, but video evidence makes that too much and they at least want the "bad apples" punished.

And yesterday the two officers were punished - they lost their jobs. None of the reports I've read have said anything about criminal charges being pressed against these officers. While rubes like us would definitely be sent to prison for beating people up with metal rods if such an incident were caught on tape and broadcast on TV with our names attached to them, police officers are obviously too fragile to have to face the consequences of their actions.

A local news report that includes the surveillance video (via Towleroad) is after the jump.

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I'm with you, Alex. Why aren't criminal charges being brought against the two cops?!

A common argument I hear in defense of the "not-sending-cops-to-prison" line of thinking is: "Do you know what happens to cops in jail?!?!"

To which I usually counter, "Do you know what happens to anyone in jail?"

There's a reason people don't want to go to prison and most people at least try to obey the spirit of the law. Because the prison-industrial complex is a terrible thing to be a part of. You'd think cops, having to put people in jail all the time, would know better than anyone why they shouldn't break the law and make an effort to stay out of jail.

Power corrupts, is the moral.

Apparently "Prison is not supposed to be a country club!" applies only to the peasants. Rich people, politicians, and police officers would suffer so much more than the rest of us in prison.

I wish I had a dad like that. So warm. So loving. So compassionate. Makes me, I don't know, all kinds of goosebump-y.

Regan DuCasse | March 27, 2011 2:30 PM

F**king A those cops should be charged with felony assault!
I work with the LAPD. I'm in the crime scene photo division, but I ride along with patrol officers to get to know them, street procedures and so on.

Civilians can do it too. Makes good relations as well as monitoring.
The above comments are excellent. Especially about peace officers knowing better than anyone what jail is for.
The conduct of these officers wasn't within procedure, nor necessary in their duty.

I have to wonder what the deal was with the bathroom in this club?

I've been in stores, theaters and restaurants where there were two, one toilet separated restrooms for males and females. If one was occupied, and you're of the opposite designated gender, it's FINE to use the one available!
Who cares?

I have no idea what the restroom options were in this situation, but there was no CRIMINAL activity involved in this club to even require notice of the police in the first place!
The phones of the victims missing is a big deal. They are evidence and shouldn't be going missing whatsoever.