Weekly Daily Brickbats Archive 2009 September 15-31

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His Aim Is True

A 14-year-old girl had to have a Taser dart removed from her skull after she was shot with the device by Tucumcari, New Mexico, Police Chief Roger Hatcher. Her mother, Stacy Atkins, says the two had been fighting over a cell phone and she took her daughter to the police station. The girl ran away, and Hatcher later found her at a park. When he approached her, she ran away, so he fired his Taser at her.

*This story originally misidentified the location of Tucumcari, New Mexico.

Make a Run for the Border

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials admit they had they had plenty of documentation that Mark Lyttle was born in North Carolina. So why did they deport him to Mexico? They blame it all on Lyttle, claiming he told them he was born in Mexico. Lyttle, who is reportedly bipolar and suffers from a learning disability, insists he told them he was born in the United States and agents refused to believe him. But even if Lyttle did say he was from Mexico why did ICE believe him over all the documents they had? They say they are reviewing the case and can't answer that question.

Healthy Choices

Over the past six years, some one million patients have suffered "neglectful, demeaning, painful and sometimes downright cruel treatment" in National Health Service hospitals, according to Britain's Patients Association. The report, which came after some 1,200 patients were found to have died from improper care at one health service trust, catalogs patients left in pain or in soiled bed clothes and denied adequate food and water. It details patients who suffered from incorrect diagnoses and canceled surgeries.

Ending the Cycle

Concerned about rising obesity among children, the British government has started a campaign to encourage children to bicycle to school, even sending cycling champs into schools to talk to students. But the Guardian newspaper reports that at the same time, many schools are discouraging or even banning children from biking to school because of safety concerns.

One Out of 100 Ain't Bad

After the Florida Highway Patrol set up a DUI check point in Gainesville, they stopped 1,131 vehicles. All those stops resulted in zero arrests for DUI. They did, however, arrest two people for outstanding warrants, seven others on various felony charges, and one for misdemeanor drug charge, and they issued 104 traffic citations.