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Video Exonerates Man Set Up By Louisiana Cops And Prosecutors

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by CometsWin, Mar 2, 2015.

  1. CometsWin

    CometsWin Breaker Breaker One Nine

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    SpaceGhost falls in faint, his idyllic vision of police forever shattered.

    On a more serious note, how many of these events happen that aren't caught on video? One caught for every ten not caught? This man could have spent the rest of his life in prison.

    Video Exonerates Man Set Up By Louisiana Cops And Prosecutors
    http://news.yahoo.com/video-exonerates-man-set-louisiana-cops-prosecutors-video-202632601.html

    If not for cell phone video, 47-year-old disabled veteran Douglas Dendinger could be going to prison — because of an apparent coordinated effort by Washington Parish, La. cops and prosecutors who falsely accused him of battery and witness intimidation.

    As New Orleans’ WWL reports, Dendinger’s two-year nightmare began on Aug. 20, 2012, when he was paid $50 to serve a court summons on behalf of his nephew against Bogalusa police officer Chad Cassard in a police brutality lawsuit.

    Dendinger handed Cassard a white envelope containing the documents and says he went on his way. But 20 minutes later, police showed up to Dendinger’s house and arrested him. He was put in jail on charges of simple battery, obstruction of justice and intimidating a witness.

    Two of those charges are felonies, and a prior cocaine conviction on Dendinger’s record threatened to land him in jail for a long time as a repeat offender.

    But Dendinger was confident that a mistake had been made and that he would be released without cause since two prosecutors and several police officers had seen him hand over the summons peacefully.

    But that’s not what happened.

    A year after the incident, then-District Attorney Walter Reed brought charges against Dendinger. His case was backed by two prosecutors who asserted that Dendinger had assaulted Cassard. Seven witness statements also supported the case.

    Cassard made the same claim, writing in a voluntary statement that Dendinger “slapped him in the chest” when he served the summons.

    Pamela Legendre, a staff attorney who witnessed the hand-off, said she thought Dendinger had punched Cassard.

    Bogalusa police chief Joe Culpepper said that Dendinger had used “violence” and “force.”

    And another witness said in a deposition that Dendinger used such force when he served the summons that Cassard flew back several feet.

    “It wasn’t fun and games, they had a plan, the plan was really to go after him and put him away. That is scary,” Philip Kaplan, the attorney representing Dendinger in his civil rights case, told WWL.

    “I realized even more at that moment these people are trying to hurt me,” Dendinger told the news station.

    Luckily for Dendinger, his wife and nephew had filmed him that day in order to prove that the court papers had been served.

    Grainy video of the exchange shows Dendinger handing Cassard the summons and the former police officer walking away in the opposite direction. Though the video aired by WWL does not show the entire encounter, what it does not show is Dendinger slapping anyone or acting aggressively during the crucial moment when he served the summons.

    The video also shows that the witness who claimed that Denginger’s force pushed Cassard back several feet had his back turned as the scene unfolded.

    After Reed was forced to recuse his office from the case, it was referred to the Louisiana attorney general who quickly dropped the charges against Dendinger.

    Rafael Goyeneche, president of the New Orleans Metropolitan Crime Commission, told WWL that after viewing the video he did not see Dendinger commit battery on Cassard and that the officers and prosecutors involved could be looking at serious ethics charges.

    “I didn’t see a battery, certainly a battery committed that would warrant criminal charges being preferred,” Goyeneche said.

    “It’s a felony to falsify a police report,” Goyeneche continued. “So this is a police report, and this police report was the basis for charging this individual.”

    Kaplan made the obvious point: ”If this was truly a battery on a police officer, with police officers all around him, why isn’t something happening right there.
     
    #1 CometsWin, Mar 2, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2015
  2. HamJam

    HamJam Contributing Member

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    What I wouldn't give just to know how small the fraction of incidents like these that are discovered is, in comparison to how often the cops get away with it.

    People probably think I am crazy, but I honestly think the only solution to the police and prison problem this nation has is for citizens to arm themselves into organized and armed militias and to refuse to allow police to enter their neighborhoods. We can watch over ourselves.

    The police and the prison system have done far more harm to my family and families like mine than they have done good.
     
  3. REEKO_HTOWN

    REEKO_HTOWN I'm Rich Biiiiaaatch!

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    Rage inducing.
     
  4. peleincubus

    peleincubus Member

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    im sorry but that would result in chaos. there are a lot of problems with our "tax collecting" police. but your solution would make things much much worse.
     
  5. HamJam

    HamJam Contributing Member

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    Obviously I disagree (otherwise I would not have put forth the opinion that I did), but I hope we can respectfully disagree.

    As chaotic as what I propose may be, I think it is the nature of power to be abused. Reform is doomed as long as there is institutionalized and entrenched power. From the top (the national government) to the bottom (the police and prisons) there is just too much corruption, abuse of power , invasion of privacy, erosion of liberty, and outright heinous and inhumane actions for me to think reform is possible.

    I mean, did you see the story about the judges taking money from private prisons in return for railroading minors into the custody of those prisons. These are judges taking money to illegally and inhumanely steal the lives of children so that corporations can be paid more tax payer money.

    That right there should have been enough to create a drastic movement for reform of laws, prisons, the judiciary. But the idea of private companies running prisons and getting taxpayer money to do so is not changing. All that happened was a couple judges (and just the ones that were caught mind you) will spend some time in jail -- and the disgusting system will keep on keeping on.

    We can't trust the government or the police to reform themselves anymore. At this point in time I would prefer a little chaos over what we currently have.
     
  6. FranchiseBlade

    FranchiseBlade Contributing Member
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    Very infuriating.

    I honestly don't believe these kinds of things are the norm, but rather the unfortunate exception.

    That being said, I understand a general distrust of law enforcement and the legal system.
     
  7. Air Langhi

    Air Langhi Contributing Member

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    Are those cops going to jail now?
     
  8. Major

    Major Member

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    If the guy had just minded his own business and not tried to serve a baseless warrant on the honorable police officer, none of this would have happened. It's clearly his fault. At least, that's what I imagine Bobby and bigtexxx would tell me.
     
  9. Major

    Major Member

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    What makes you think your method wouldn't be subject to corruption? It's basically how mobsters used to run their neighborhoods. Whoever is doing the policing in the community is going to be subject to the same things. And if the community members can't rely on a court system to adjudicate anything, you're just putting that much more power into your community leaders by having no checks & balances.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. rockbox

    rockbox Around before clutchcity.com

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    I used to think that way until I worked with a former HPD officer and my wife's aunt married an APD officer. They told me some crazy stories of their exploits. None were as bad as this but their were plenty of stories about beating kids up because they mouthed off or how they would take suspects that swung at them to a field before booking. What bothered me the most is how they acted when telling me the stories. It was like it was just part of the job.
     
  11. edwardc

    edwardc Member

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    There needs be to a review board for these things.
     
  12. Teen Wolf

    Teen Wolf Member

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    I hope all the people involved in this crime are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. But we know that won't happen. At worst they'll get paid leave for a few weeks. Pathetic. ****ING PATHETIC. Believe me this shady crap happens a lot more than we would like to think.
     
  13. Remii

    Remii Member

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    Too many justice officials (or people who work in the justice system) are being caught participating in criminal activities for it not to be the norm. But even if it's just a small percentage a few bad apples can ruin a barrel.
     
  14. HamJam

    HamJam Contributing Member

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    There is a big difference between mobsters hiring armed thugs to enforce their will and what I am proposing -- which basically amounts to armed neighborhood watches.

    Corruption will always exist as long as there are humans, but the checks and balances you are referring to often just serve as a further shield for these abusive cops and politicians to hide behind.

    It is always dangerous to trust someone, but, I would rather trust my friends, family and neighbors than police and the "justice" system at this point. And, the neighborhood watches would not be able to hide behind their power and the law in order to get away with abusing people. They would be directly accountable to their fellow neighbors -- many of whom would also be involved in some way in the organization of these militias.
     
  15. HamJam

    HamJam Contributing Member

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    Who at this point in our government would you trust to put together such a review board? There is so much corruption and there is so much money being made on the current criminal justice system. This is why I don't trust reform anymore, because the people creating the reform are on the payroll of or in cahoots with the people targeted by reforms.

    Look at health care reform and finance regulation reform. The bills that were passed were essentially written by and benefited the insurance industry and the finance industry respectively, more than anyone else.
     
  16. Teen Wolf

    Teen Wolf Member

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    With all due respect put down the crack pipe. I agree the current system which affords police officers immunity needs to be re-worked but your proposal is the dumbest thing I've read on clutchfans in a long time. I can't even fathom how you can view your proposal as a good idea.
     
  17. JuanValdez

    JuanValdez Contributing Member

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    Yeah, we can call this new organization a police force.

    I believe police departments do have organs for this called Internal Affairs. The prosecutors also have to worry about their local oversight departments as well as the DOJ and the American Bar Association. I guess we'll see how effective all these counter-measures turn out to be here. But, the problem isn't that we've never created a structure to punish corruption.
     
  18. PhiSlammaJamma

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    I think these things happen more often then we realize, from people being set up to be fired from their jobs all the way to our governments deciding who is the next villian and tearing their life apart. It only takes an instant for any of our lives to be thrown into an abyss at the will of another person or group. Our reputations and freedom are that fragile. And the media are merciless. In all likelihood we each have more than one person in our lives that want to see us fall and that have justification in their own mind as to why it's reasonable. So when I think about that, I think these things happen more often then we want to realize. For an entire group to orchestrate an event, that's more difficult, but it's likely all at the root one person who lit the fuse.
     
  19. Major

    Major Member

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    What makes you think neighborhood watch members wouldn't protect each other just like police do? If one watchperson gets angry and beats up a resident, and he's friends with all the other watchpeople, how is it any different than the police? Who protects the members of the community that no one likes?

    What you're proposing already exists - police are members of the community. The city is basically the equivalent of the HOA that organizes your neighborhood watchpeople. The city leaders are directly accountable to their voters.
     
  20. HamJam

    HamJam Contributing Member

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    Call them what you will, but the police have protections when they abuse their power and take their orders from the government, neither of these things would be present in community based militias.
     

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