Crime

Comply, or We Will Erase your Memory

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Need still more reason to dislike Tennessee law enforcement officials? How about having your memory wiped? From Channel 4 in Nashville:

For almost two years, [Nashville] Metro police have had the option of calling for a needle loaded with a strong sedative to control the most unruly people they encounter on the street….

The drug is called Midazolam, which is better known as Versed. People who have had a colonoscopy have probably had a shot of the drug for the procedure.

"The drug has an amnesia effect, and we use that therapeutically because one of the nice ways to take care of the discomfort is to make people forget that they've had it," said biomedical ethics and law enforcement expert Dr. Steven Miles….

"It's something that in the medical community and in the EMS medical community is very common. It's a given. When I surveyed the major metropolitan areas around the country, I think only two cities were not actively using it," said [Dr. Corey Slovis, Nashville's emergency medical director].

Read the whole thing here.

And no, this is not an alternative to being Tasered. Channel 4 reporter Demetria Kalodimos interviewed Dameon Beasley, who said that officers injected him with the drug only after failing to shock him into submission.

Editor Brian Doherty wrote here about police abuses during the 2007 immigration riots. Editor Radley Balko blogged here about police Tasering a man in his own home.

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  1. In-fucking-defensible.

    I’ll just lie here in wait for the cop fellaters.

  2. This seems like a nice way to reduce the number of complaints against the police.

  3. And afterward, they can remember it for you wholesale.

  4. It’s way past time to start forming those well regulated militias the Constitution expects us to have at the ready for use against tyrants.

  5. The cops here in Nashville just got their tasers back. They were confiscated a couple of years ago after a man was shocked to death while he was being unruly and non-compliant.

  6. Here’s some links

    http://www.theppsc.org/forums/showthread.php?t=913
    -about the family’s suit after the death

    http://www.tennessean.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080530/NEWS01/805300425/-1/ARCHIVE01
    -about Metro’s re-equipment with tasers

  7. Yes, lets inject unruly suspects with a GABA inhibitor. Because unruly suspects are never drunk or high on other CNS depressants at the same time.

  8. Didn’t Drudge mock the Putin administration relentlessly for something very similar that happened after some of the Chechen unpleasantness?

  9. Don’t you have to love the logic that law enforncement uses? Doctors can’t be trustedto diagnose and treat pain patients, but cops are perfectly qualified to dose people with sedatives? They really are experts in all things, aren’t they?

  10. No, we didn’t anal rape you with our billy clubs! You can’t remember it! It didn’t happen! Dispatch we need more Versed . . . just to be sure.

  11. Midazolam is an interesting choice. It’s not the preference in ERs or psychiatry wards because it acts similarly to alcohol in many ways, and can amplify the effects of booze or worsen delerium. Most facilities would use a drug like haldol or droperidol an antispsychotic medication in doses that would produce what is essentially zombification. These drugs have a risk of producing a potentially fatal heart rhythym, and people tend to be careful in using them outside of a medical facility.

  12. Dealing with cops can be a lot like getting a colonoscopy, so it doesn’t seem like such an odd policy.

  13. Fuck!!! Now cops can dope you? Does anyone know if you can fail a drug test because of this shit?

  14. You could be tortured into signing a confession and then not remember any of it but hey, you confessed to bad for you.

  15. Don’t Midazol me, bro.

  16. Naga,

    It’s a benzodiazepine, so if they’re running a relatively full pannel of tests, yeah.

    I’ll give them a year or two before they kill someone with it who has a stomach full of booze or pills that haven’t kicked in yet when they get the injection.

  17. It’s a benzo, but it’s got a short half life, so unless you’re getting a drug test within a couple of hours of getting the injection, it’s not going to show up.

    And of course they’re going to kill someone with this. And of course the cop fellaters will justify it somehow.

  18. well I’d like to see them shoot up some benzo fiend with a killer tolerance.
    mind control is coming to the USSA

  19. Blaarff *splutter* *cringe* okay, too dark. Dose me please, so I don’t have to know?

  20. Didn’t Drudge mock the Putin administration relentlessly for something very similar that happened after some of the Chechen unpleasantness?

    That was (believed to be) a Fentanyl-based (crazy purple) knockout gas that was deployed as a last resort during a mass hostage situation; IIRC it killed dozens, but is estimated to have saved hundreds.

    Take from that what you will.

  21. J: K, have you ever flashy thing’d me?

    K: No.

    J: I ain’t playin K. Have you ever flashy thing’d me?

    K: No.

  22. How are we going to remember all their political indoctrination and supermarket values now?

  23. They used to teach cops techniques like de-escalation when they were dealing with belligerent people, now they’re just lazy and use the taser and stuff like this like a remote control. Its really sad.

  24. Hey, I’ve had that shit. I think. Lemme see, when was that? Yesterday? No… maybe today? Honey, when did you… honey?

  25. Some people carry pocket constitutions. I am going to start carrying a pocket-sized list of police abuses and overreaching. Sadly, this policy probably won’t make the cut.

  26. When I read things like this it makes me reach for my revolver. The revolution starts now.

  27. So they’ve perfected that “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” technology?

  28. Damnit! I just called my lawyer to start a lawsuit against the cops, but now I can’t remember why!

  29. Doctors can’t be trustedto diagnose and treat pain patients, but cops are perfectly qualified to dose people with sedatives?

    It is so hard not to use ad hominems or hyperbole.

    This should be a crime for tampering with evidence.

  30. Yeah baby, Welcome to the new Regime! Thank you Dictator Bush! papers please!

    JT
    http://www.Ultimate-Anonymity.com

  31. Ya know, that Lowell guy (Cunningham I think?) who created Men in Black, with that memory eraser thingie, is from Tennessee.

    Sometimes fiction leads truth . . .

  32. It’s a benzodiazepine, so if they’re running a relatively full pannel of tests, yeah.

    I just see some poor bastard on probation. Gets arrested for getting pissy with the cops for taking their picture Calls in for his number and takes his piss test. Comes up positive. Tells them he SWEARS he didn’t take anything. so probation does a petition to revoke his probation and send him to prison for 2.5 years.

    So another poor bastard goes to prison.

  33. The funny thing is, I have people on a message board local to me wondering why I am so distrustful of the police. If I posted this, they’d probably ban me.

  34. This should be a crime for tampering with evidence.

    No shit.

    We need defense lawyers to argue that anyone on whom this drug was used is being denied due process, because by tampering with their recollection of events the police are making it impossible for the arrest subject to receive effective counsel.

  35. I just found out you can become a member on policelink.com without any sort of valid email verification. I guess that’s tangentially related to this, and do with it what you will.

  36. We need defense lawyers to argue that anyone on whom this drug was used is being denied due process, because by tampering with their recollection of events the police are making it impossible for the arrest subject to receive effective counsel.

    Fucking A, that is an excellent notion. Now if only half the judges in the country weren’t former prosecutors…

  37. Since I completely forget what we were talking about (fucking benzos!), something completely OT, but:

    Andrew Sullivan reports some good news.

  38. We need defense lawyers to argue that anyone on whom this drug was used is being denied due process…

    Wasn’t there an earlier thread about defense attorneys being agents of the state?

  39. mmmmm

    reminds me of Vernor Vinges’s “mindscrubs” in “A deepness in the sky”.

  40. reminds me of Vernor Vinges’s “mindscrubs” in “A deepness in the sky”.

    Good call. Haven’t read that one in a while.

  41. I was given midazolam by Kaiser for an endoscopy. No anesthesiologist present; the doctor administered the drug. It was supposed to wear off shortly after I woke up. It did not. I was woozy for days, and couldn’t get off the couch, even to get to the bed. I had memory loss from it about a month; for example, I suddenly couldn’t remember the phone number of a woman I’ve known for 15 years, whose number I’d always known by memory. Additionally, I had a diminishment of cognitive function for about a week…couldn’t write…my brain seemed to be working through some thick curtain. The whole experience was terrifying.

  42. I rarely watch the local news. Just often enough to remind me what a waste of time it really is. Last time I remember, the local health correspondent was selling colonoscopies and the wonderful mind erasing drugs pretty hard. She creeps my out anyway, but this was a zippety do dah moment; the kind that makes you wonder if it was worth chewing through the leather straps that day.

    I think it was KDKA in Pittsburgh.

  43. “Of course you consented for us to search your house. It was right after we subdued you with Versed.”

    This has dystopian novel written all over it.

    I hope some defense attorney or ACLU lawyer or someone gets the cops to stop using this memory-erasing stuff on grounds mentioned above.

  44. Oh, don’t worry folks – they’ll stop using this after it comes out that one of Shelby County’s finest has been pinching some to use as a date-rape drug.

  45. Ah, crap. That s/b Davidson county.

  46. I’m really struggling with the legality of this, from a medical-legal perspective.

    There is no doctor prescribing this drug, there is no pharmacist dispensing it, there is no licensed practitioner administering it. How are the cops not breaking a half a dozen laws by doing this?

  47. because I AM THE LAW

  48. I have had Midazolam a couple of times for medical procedures and can confirm that it causes memory loss. When I try to recall the procedures, things are very hazy.

  49. Some of you assholes could do with a little tasing and some mind control

  50. Oh, don’t worry folks – they’ll stop using this after it comes out that one of Shelby County’s finest has been pinching some to use as a date-rape drug.

    No good. This will only be used as an argument for why only the police should be allowed to yield such a drug. People will be so concerned at the possibility that the general public will get ahold of it that they will immediately surrender exclusive right of the police to handle it completely forgetting why they were so outraged in the first place.

  51. Some of you assholes could do with a little tasing and some mind control

    Edward, is that you?

  52. Edward is somebody I’d actually like to meet in real life. For some reason I imagine he looks like Tony Shalhoub, but with an eyepatch.

  53. >Some of you assholes could do with a little tasing and some mind control

    Edward, is that you?

    Nah. Edward is much more believable than that. I figger it was an attemot at sarcasm.

  54. Edward is somebody I’d actually like to meet in real life. For some reason I imagine he looks like Tony Shalhoub, but with an eyepatch.

    I suppose the next question would be, is he a ball of twitching neuroses, like Adrian Monk? Adrian Monk, of course, with an eyepatch.

  55. I’ve always pictured him more as a cross between Wallace Shawn and Peter Parker’s Russian landlord.

  56. This is fucked up. Benzos are not a particular danger by themselves, but combined with a bunch of booze or other CNS depressants it might be lights out time. They will definitely kill somebody eventually, get sued, and the taxpayers will pay out the ass in order to stop this.

  57. Wow now you can be charged for a crime you do not remember commiting and you don’t even need to be mentally Ill.

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