Albuquerque Police Union Supportive of Seattle Lawsuit Even Seattle Union Wouldn’t Back

union bossKRQEYesterday I wrote about a risible lawsuit filed by about 100 cops in Seattle that claimed their constitutional rights to things like performing reasonable search and seizures were being threatened by a Department of Justice-mandated use of force policy they claimed made them afraid of doing their jobs. That policy, essentially, tells cops to use the least amount of coercive force needed and to attempt to de-escalate situations before introducing force. The policy also allows what cops did before using force to be taken into account in ruling whether that use of force was justified or not. As Seattle's mayor, one of the defendants in the lawsuit, noted, the new policy was implemented "because of a disturbing pattern of unnecessary use of force and other forms of unconstitutional policing." Police officers filed the lawsuit without the support of the union, which hopes the rules can be amended without a suit, or even a lawyer to represent them.

The lawsuit did find a sympathetic police union boss, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, whose police department, like Seattle's, is facing Department of Justice mandates after a review found probable cause of a pattern or practice of widespread abuse there. The president of the police union in Albuquerque appears to be supportive of the lawsuit, pointing to it as a sign of the DOJ-mandated use of force policy's failure. "It's important for Albuquerque to take the failures of this particular use of force policy and ensure that they don't happen here as we're going through this same process," Albuquerque Police Officers’ Association President Shaun Wiloughby told KRQE. Willoughby also said he wanted the police union to be involved in the process of drafting new policies. Given the widespread misconduct by officers the union represents that's led to the DOJ review in the first place, that would be ill-advised. Unfortunately that probably means you can't rule out the DOJ doing that. After all, when announcing the findings of abuse in Albuquerque's police department, Acting Assistant General Jocelyn Samuels insisted it shouldn't reflect poorly on individual cops and that they should keep making sure they got home safe at the end of their shifts.

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  • tarran||

    You know, if they want to get home safe at night, they should consider abandoning the thug life and giving up gang-banging.

    They are hiring like crazy in the Bakken fields; there is no reason why most of them can't find honest work.

  • Swiss Servator, CH yeah!||

    Or if they really do get off on being armed, uniforms and the like, they could go to the local recruiting office...

    Of course they might end up MPs, and still go home with no friends.

  • IceTrey||

    Most of them already have. That's part of the problem, they treat Albuquerque like it's Afghanistan.

  • Hyperion||

    That requires work and you can't shoot people, and dogs, with no consequences.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    I have yet to come across a union boss that wasn't scum.

  • Hyperion||

    their constitutional rights to things like performing reasonable search and seizures

    Is shooting puppies a constitutional right also? It's amazing the new things that we about this constitution on a daily basis.

  • Swiss Servator, CH yeah!||

    A RIGHT to search people and seize things?!

    WTF? Hey Chief Big Brain, could you point that particular "right" out to me in either the US or NM Constitutions?

  • Almanian!||

    "The constitution bans 'unreasonable searches and seizures.' That means that we, as cops, have a RIGHT to condut 'reasonable' searches and seizures! Geez - what are ya, an IDIOT?"

    /copderp

  • Almanian!||

    Fuck tha poe lease

  • Almanian!||

    You know who else supported extra-Constitutional actions...

  • Paper Wasp||

    If the unions are responsible for stymied progress on police conduct reform, then the unions should be covering every last dime of successful civilian lawsuits against police.

    Of course they can afford to block reform. No matter what happens, civilian taxpayers, not unions, pick up the tab for abusive cops.

    Ugh, unions suck like a black hole.

  • Jayburd||

    The Feds should buy them off with some Lenco Bearcats and cellphone tracking devices so they will come on board with the new policies.

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