Police Abuse

NYPD Cops Put Pregnant Woman in a Choke Hold Over Grilling In Front of Her House

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bill de blasio's new york
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I am running out of ways to introduce this kind of story. Were you a cop or a police apologist who thought Eric Garner should've just fucking complied with police if he wanted to live? Did you think Jahmiel Cuffee should've known better after his first eight marijuana arrests and done a better job hiding it from cops? Well, this story involves a pregnant woman, who was put in a chokehold by New York City cops, because she was grilling in front of her house. Via the New York Post:

A seven-months pregnant woman released photos on Monday that she said show an NYPD cop putting her in a chokehold after officers accused her and her family of illegally grilling on the sidewalk.

The images, pulled from a cell phone video of the incident, shows what appears to be an officer with his arm around the throat of Rosan Miller, 27, as he tried to place her under arrest.

Chokeholds are banned by the NYPD and cops may consider the maneuver used a "neck restraint."

At a press conference earlier today New York City's mayor, Democrat Bill De Blasio, said that "the law is the law" and that the NYPD would continue to strictly enforce petty laws like the ones that led to this pregnant woman's brutal encounter with police and Garner's.  Bill Bratton, the city's police commissioner, added that respecting police and correcting your behavior when they engage you is what democracy's all about.

By no means are the stories of alleged NYPD abuse highlighted here at Reason a comprehensive account of all the police brutality that happens in New York City—a lot of these stories never make the news. I had a friend who claimed years ago local cops beat him up but because of his criminal record didn't feel comfortable complaining.

I've had unpleasant encounters with police where I felt my rights were violated but have been spared being their victim. My parents, who grew up in Communist Poland, always taught me that when interacting with police I should be be polite, avoid eye contact, avoid volunteering information, and attempt to end the interaction as quickly as possible. This was advice they accumulated from decades of living under communist rule. Facing assault, and even death, for failing to comply with authorities, that's what totalitarianism was about, not democracy.

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  1. Broken window policing. Think how many windows she could have broken with that grill.

    1. Think how many pig’s skulls could have been broken with that grill.

  2. “…added that respecting police and correcting your behavior when they engage you is what democracy’s all about.”

    Just wow.

    1. It’s been a while since I’ve heard a more damning indictment of democracy. I approve.

    2. Freedom is asking permission and doing what you’re told.

      Or the Mayor’s gonna have to choke a bitch.

  3. Grilling food on the sidewalk is now a capital offense, according to the combined authority (legislative, executive and judiciary) of the NYPD.
    I did not know that.

  4. Just out of curiosity, if a police offer is trying to enforce a law (however stupid), and someone says, “No”, what do they do then?

    1. Death.

    2. I’ll bet there are some guidelines regarding the response vs. the seriousness of the offense, so if a kid runs off with a joint, a shot in the back is not indicated.
      Sorta like grilling on a sidewalk. How about writing a ticket, and letting it go?
      But I’m guessing the real problem here wasn’t the grilling, it was the ‘Fuck off, cop!’ response when the cop said ‘put it out’.
      Can’t have THAT!

      1. Or what NYC2AZ said.

      2. I agree it should have just been a ticket. Why it wasn’t we don’t know.

        You seemed to be getting closer the answer i’d hoped for, of

        ‘resort to force only *proportional to the crime and with the least risk of anyone being hurt*’

        which at least admits – at a certain point, cops have to use force.

        1. “which at least admits – at a certain point, cops have to use force.”

          I’m not an anarchist; there seems to be a role for the government and that means granting a near monopoly of force.
          Like the mission-creep of the fed-gov, the problem is to restrain it within bounds.
          A chokehold for grilling is ‘way beyond that.

          1. Not to belabor the issue, because we generally agree…

            but ‘for grilling’ is not really the casus-chokeum, is it? we have no idea why what should have been a ticket turned into, ‘cop plays horsey with spatula-wielding preggers’.

            1. “but ‘for grilling’ is not really the casus-chokeum, is it? we have no idea why what should have been a ticket turned into, ‘cop plays horsey with spatula-wielding preggers’.”

              Had to read this a couple of times; distracted by a tune: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2KirUGHqV28
              Correct, we weren’t there and can’t fully know, but what we see in the images clearly requires explanation by the cops.
              I see no weapon wielded by the woman; are her words enough to cause that?

              1. Disrespecting a cop can include a death sentence should the cop desire. Death sentences are handed out at a cops whim in this country.

            2. “we have no idea why what should have been a ticket turned into, ‘cop plays horsey with spatula-wielding preggers’.”

              And that’s the problem. The police have decided that we don’t need to know what happened and that we’re insulting them by even asking the question. We should assume they’re lying until they decide that demonstrating otherwise is worth their time.

          2. The cops are anarchists. Most of the people in DC are anarchists. Why shouldn’t you be?

            1. “Nihilists! Fuck me. I mean, say what you want about the tenets of National Socialism, Dude, at least it’s an ethos.”

            2. The cops are anarchists. Most of the people in DC are anarchists.

              What’s this now? Unless you are at an anarchist convention there is no place on earth where “most of the people” are anarchists.

              1. I would say that most folks at an anarchist convention are socialist.

              2. Yeah, I can understand describing the cops as nihilists, fascists, or mobocrats, but anarchists? I’m not seeing it….

          3. there seems to be a role for the government and that means granting a near monopoly of force.

            Their role is to plunder, murder and persist as a cancerous growth feeding off society. You trying to restrain the government is putting a leash on it and then handing it the reins to restrict itself.

            As a monopoly arbitrator, it’s also entitled to rule on conflicts involving itself, which has an inescapable outcome.

        2. This reminds of when the openborders.info site, which promotes a bunch of “keyhole solutions,” realized that implementing those solutions means most of the existing bureaucracy would still be doing most of the bureaucratic stuff they complain about.

    3. In this case the cops could have tried to get him to identify himself without showing ID. If that fails, try to get a bystander to ID the man. If nobody is willing to identify the man, and everybody is uncooperative, then that indicates to me that that police action isn’t something that the people who live in the area consider necessary. At that point, given the absolutely minor nature of the offense, it’s better just to give up and walk away.

    4. The Supreme Court has already ruled that killing someone for running from the police is a violation of the dead person’s civil rights, and I imagine they’d feel the same about a cop committing violence against someone who is ignoring their authority in respect to a crime as petty as grilling in front of their house.

      But my imagination has common sense, so who knows?

  5. I don’t understand all this talk about democracy and cops. WTF does one have to do with the other?

    1. The cop’s union can really get out the vote!

  6. OT, let’s rag on random greenies:
    We had the SF marathon this weekend. Pretty much sliced the eastern portion of the city in half.
    Well, the route is ~3 blocks from abode Sevo, and there is construction going on there, including a bunch of ~2′ dia. pipe pilings extending from the ground.
    A dedicated greenie hopped the fence with a club and proceeded to bang on one as a gong in ‘spiritual support’ of the runners, once every 2-3 seconds for the better part of an hour.
    Now abode Sevo has double-glazed windows, so I could ignore it, but neighbors closer don’t have that luxury and were THIS CLOSE TO STRINGING THE FUCKER UP!

    1. Sounds like your neighbors aren’t in tune with Gaia and their fellow travelers. They should have joined him out there banging away too.

      /hippy

      1. On the original banger’s skull.

    2. The most important lesson I learned from this is that Sevo lives in a pretty good neighborhood and that Reasonoids should crash with him when they’re mired in the bay area.

      1. Can I come? I’ve been told that I snore and fart in my sleep.

      2. Knarf Yenrab!|7.29.14 @ 12:26AM|#
        “The most important lesson I learned from this is that Sevo lives in a pretty good neighborhood”

        I’ll bet the construction pilings told you that…

        1. You can thank Mr. Bernanke for those.

    3. Cripes, they’re digging up my tiny street for a MONTH. About 10 days to go. Which has meant destroying blocks of parking for the duration, in a neighborhood where I am surprised there aren’t physical fights over parking spaces. At times the noise (trucks backing up, the dropping of giant steel plates that shakes the house, etc.) has started at 7:15 a.m. and been a dozen feet from my window.

      Though today was the first of who knows who many “Nobody’s around or doing anything, but it doesn’t look done and you still can’t park here” days.

      1. At times the noise (trucks backing up, the dropping of giant steel plates that shakes the house, etc.) has started at 7:15 a.m. and been a dozen feet from my window.

        Sounds like a noise ordinance violation. You should call the cops and ask them to start choke-holding construction workers.

  7. If the public wants to grill, it should do so on private, rather than public, property. Public property is for the public polity when they’re not conducting private business, like public grilling for private purposes.

    Public sidewalks most certainly are not intended for private purposes conducted by the public for its private interests on public property paid for by privately obtained funds.

    1. I’m pretty sure the issue was the level of force used by the PD, not whether one should be able to cook wherever they want.

    2. Fun NYC fact: almost all sidewalks in NYC actually are private property, although the public has what is essentially an easement. It’s kind of an uneasy balance – it’s “private property” and the owner has to maintain it, not the city, but at the same time the owner can’t treat it like private property, by, say, grilling there or having an open container of alcohol – but overall it seems to work out about as well as any other system.

  8. I have an idea!

    We can use job openings for cops as a honeypot to get violent sociopathic criminals to reveal themselves. Then just put everyone who applies for the job under surveillance.

    It would solve so many problems.

    1. Just give them their pensions right away. Keep the criminals off the streets, and the cost is the same.

  9. “Democracy has nothing to do with freedom. Democracy is a soft variant of communism, and rarely in the history of ideas has it been taken for anything else.”
    ? Hans-Hermann Hoppe

    1. “Democracy is about respecting individual rights.”

      — young Egyptians I’m still reluctantly laughing at

  10. Officers showed up at a Bradford Street in East New York home at around 7:30 p.m. Saturday, where they spotted Miller’s husband, Moses, grilling on a public sidewalk before asking him to relocate to the back yard, cops said.

    The man refused to hand over his ID and began to walk away before cops tried to grab him and place him under arrest, cops said.

    That’s when Rosan and her brother, John Miller, started slapping at police preventing them from making the arrest.

    OK, the “show me your ID” thing is questionable. Is that now standard for any interaction with police? Just ask the guy to move it off the sidewalk. And arresting him for refusing and walking away seems excessive.

    Still, if that account is accurate, this looks like yet another of those cases of “brutality” that starts when someone attacks the police. Being non-confrontational with police is just common sense, and people who attack them are fools. I have all the sympathy possible when it’s (e.g.) some schmuck asleep in bed and the cops bust into the wrong house, but this looks like another case of troublemaking boneheads getting themselves in trouble. From what I see so far, the fact that it was about “grilling” and involved a pregnant woman speaks to the boneheaded of the troublemakers, not the brutality of the police involved.

    1. How many times do you think they’d been harassed by the police doing “broken windows” policing before?

      1. Are you asking how many times they had interactions with the police after clearly broking the law in plainsight? Because it feels like you’re asking something different even though we have ample evidence that they’re at the very least knuckleheads.

        1. breaking, plain sight, anything else, whatever

        2. Just because some jackoff at city hall writes a law that doesn’t mean that the people who have to live with it in actual neighborhoods give a shit about it. That’s the difference between law – the living, breathing reality of how people cooperate with each other via custom, agreement, and other forms of voluntary interaction – and legislation – words on paper backed up by force of arms, created in often far away places, with no consideration whatsoever for the wishes of the people who are expected to shut the fuck up, and just do what they’re told.

          “Law” that is despised by the people it applies to is immoral, and people have every right to get pissed off when some armed fuck gets up in their face about it.

          1. Do you have any evidence that the ‘grilling on the sidewalk’ law is generally despised?

            1. You’re right. It’s way more probable that this family are asocial assholes who don’t care what their neighbours think, they do what they want.

              1. Normally people don’t get in wrestling matches with the popo, so yes, that is way more probable.

                1. Happens more than you think.

        3. It’s plainly obvious that many, if not the entirety, of “quality of life” laws are essentially class warfare: easy living middle class people don’t agree with how the poors live their lives, so they agitate to get “quality of life” laws passed so they don’t have to see objectionable things in public. When those undemocratic, anti-freedom, laws get enforced on their target audience, then clearly there is going to be friction. How pissed off would you be if you were constantly getting harassed for ID and then fined by some thug for doing what you have always done, and everybody in your neighbourhood does? How frustrating would it be for you to have your life constantly interrupted for things you can’t even conceive of being crimes?

          It gets worse when these “quality of life” laws are so obviously enforced in biased ways. Here in Vancouver I don’t think twice about jaywalking. I can do it all day long, no matter how many police are present, and *I* will never get a ticket. And I never have. But you get some Native guy down in the poor parts of town, someone who looks like (and probably is) a poly drug abuser who lives on the street, and that guy gets tickets multiple times a week.

          That’s part of what I mean by “harassed.”

          1. One funny thing about white progressive is that few actually know any lower class blacks, and thus assume that any thing that looks like something middle class whites would do is something middles class whites did. No, the truth is that many lower class blacks don’t like people grilling on the front porch, attracting undesirable types to the neighborhood. Many have to live next to crack houses, and thus support drug laws. I may disagree with them politically, but I’m not some condescending proggie who pretends like their problems don’t exist and that their opinions don’t matter.

            1. I’m so not a progressive.

        4. This you?

          “It’s important that when an officer does approach you to correct your behavior, that you respect them. That’s what democracy’s all about.”

          1. Sidd Finch v2.01|7.28.14 @ 11:26PM|#

            I don’t understand all this talk about democracy and cops. WTF does one have to do with the other?

            1. The more cops you have the less democracy you get, or something like that.

            2. “It’s important that when an officer does approach you to correct your behavior, that you respect them.”

              We’ll try again without the window dressing. Leave it as plain authoritarianism.

    2. A few things…

      1) You’re quoting the NY Post. Careful with what they say in regards to police matters. The editor might as well be Patrick Lynch.

      2) This happened in East New York, a very bad neighborhood. There’s a million other things these assholes could have been doing to tidy up the place instead of busting balls at a sidewalk BBQ.

      3) I lived in Bed-Stuy for 4 years, people grill outside all the time and no one says shit. These cops were looking for trouble, period.

  11. I’m not defending arresting people for “illegal grilling.” I think that’s a stupid reason to arrest someone, and absolutely no excuse at all for a violent arrest. That said, the pictures I’ve seen don’t show a choke hold.

    An arm around the neck area isn’t sufficient to be a choke hold; chokes require pressure either on the trachea or on the veins that take blood away from the brain. The pictures I’ve seen don’t show either of those scenarios.

    Maybe the video will make things clearer, but so far I haven’t seen a choke in this instance.

    I see stupidity and violence, and irresponsible use of police authority, and fucking over minorities. And that’s bad enough.

    1. “An arm around the neck area isn’t sufficient to be a choke hold; chokes require pressure either on the trachea or on the veins that take blood away from the brain.”

      Spoken like someone who’s never had an arm wrapped around their neck.

      It takes very little effort choke the arteries once someone’s arm is around your neck. And that’s not taking into consideration the corresponding elevation of blood pressure and adrenaline that comes with these situations.

      1. Dude, I get choked out/choke people out for a few hours a week. I know what is and is not a choke hold.

      2. Sy, I’ve been training in some sort of martial art all my life, including many grappling arts. To me this doesn’t look like a very threatening choke. Looks more like he is trying to get control of her so that he can slap the cuffs on.

    2. Is this a Tulpa sock?

      1. yes

    3. …chokes require pressure either on the trachea or on the veins that take blood away from the brain…

      TO the brain. What causes someone to black out from a blood choke is loss of blood flow TO the brain, not FROM the brain. If you’re going to post pants shittingly idiotic cop apologia, at least get the basic anatomy right.

      1. You can’t get pressure on the arteries, which bring blood TO the brain. So you put pressure on the veins, which take blood away, and increase the blood pressure in the brain enough to cause unconsciousness.

        And I’m not apologizing for violent thugs arresting people for a BBQ, but what I saw was not a choke hold.

      2. N/M, it’s both. Carotids are also significantly compressed.

        Regardless, there are two general types of chokes: blood and breath. Neither of which was obviously being used in the still that I saw accompanying the NY Post article.

  12. Who the fuck does this fucking bitch think she is cooking food at her fucking house? I wish someone would come choke her to death for daring to grill meats at home. Fucking useless human beings. Go cops go! Shoot some more dogs and smash down more wrong doors.

    ^^^is what I would say if I was a statist police apologist douche…which is probably 90% of the comments on the original story from the NY Paper.

  13. Hey, if she didn’t want to be placed in a chokehold, she shouldn’t have been wearing those revealing clothes. She knew there were cops in that area; she had it coming.

  14. Geez, resist arrest and the police use force, who would have thought? I guess the author wants the police to stand there and keep asking “pretty please” to get people to follow the lawful orders of an officer.

    Now about the choke holds, if against policy and they are used that should be dealt with, probably starting at the training level. Plus I would like to see how NYPD defines a choke hold. The most common type is the rear-naked choke or “sleeper” hold which is effective and despite what many think, is safe. Yes people have died from it. People have died from tasers, people have died from pepper spray, and people have died from running from the police.

    1. Unjust laws arbitrarily enforced are not laws any free person needs to follow. Never mind that this shouldn’t even be an arrestable offense.

      So fuck you Tulpa.

    2. The most common type is the rear-naked choke or “sleeper” hold which is effective and despite what many think, is safe.

      It’s only safe if the person doing it is properly trained. Would you trust a cop, who probably has about a couple of weeks worth of hand to hand training at the academy and maybe an occasional refresher, to safely apply a rear naked choke? I sure as fuck wouldn’t.

    3. .

  15. “based on the totality of the circs, it looks to me like officer friendly was just giving a nice hug. now if you’ll excuse me, i’ve got get to another power lifting competition and then go bang my beautiful wife, Morgan Fairchild. hth”

    Bill Bratton, the city’s police commissioner, added that respecting police and correcting your behavior when they engage you is what democracy’s all about.

    Translation: “OBEY!”

    Holy fucking shit. They’re not even bother trying to hide it anymore are they?

  16. NYC Mayor and Cops To Residents: DROP DEAD

  17. Pigs gotta oink

  18. Why do NYC mayors always remind me of Tony Soprano only with less common sense and less morals?

  19. “I don’t care what anyone says, there is a powder keg in this town” the fiery ex-pol said, suggesting those “harassed” by police may begin to react violently. ” Don’t blame me, the social forecaster, when there is an explosion in this town,”

    Please please please please please please please

  20. Reason, you are obviously getting good hit counts by sensationalizing these police brutality stories – good for you, but stop and think about what you are doing for a moment.

    OK, we get it, city cops can be assholes. Always been that way, nothing new. That doesn’t mean all cops are bad – quite on the contrary, they are much more law-abiding than the general populace as a percentage of the whole.

    The problem with sensationalizing these stories: by so often repeating the false premise that our nation’s cops have all become militarized totalitarian brutes bent on doing more harm than good, you do very real harm to the reputations of the 120,000 or so other LE officers in this country who actually do perform their duties in an adequate or even exemplary manner.

    Just the opinion of a guy who only goes into the city when he must, otherwise avoids it like the plague:

    Just one or two reports of bad outcomes per week or month? In light of how many NYC ass-hats those cops must deal with on a daily basis? That in my opinion, is showing some amazing restraint on their part. [*tackling pregnant women to the ground or choking obviously physically unhealthy men to into unconsciousness, notwithstanding].

  21. If you go by NYC’s hypercautious fire code, which those who are subject to routinely violate in this case as well as in cases of extension cords and probably other things I’m not aware of, even grilling in the back yard would probably not have been legal there. Because of the large set-off distances required from bldgs., few yards in the city are big enough to allow a portable, let alone permanent, barbecue set up. So at least they’re not enforcing that.

    It is possible to cause by infrared radiation a structure fire by having a barbecue or other ostensibly contained fire too close to it, and indeed a friend who was a fireman observed such a result, but the separations needed to prevent such an occurrence are far less than the code calls for.

  22. Unfortunately, Bill Bratton is right. This sort sort of violence is exactly what Democracy and any other method of State governance is about. A State can’t help but to be violent and destructive, regardless of its form.

  23. So let me get this straight…if you’re pregnant or a minority, it’s okay to break the laws, cuss out the cops and then physically strike them?

    Whatever. This type of moronic, mindless, reflexive authority-hate is what makes it easier to paint libertarians as idiotic kooks.

    1. If the law is unjust or immoral it’s okay to break it no matter who you are. And it’s always okay to cuss out the cops since they, you know, work for US.

      But yeah, we’re so kooky thinking the government shouldn’t be enforcing, let alone creating these laws in the first place.

      Now fuck off slaver.

    2. jmomls|7.29.14 @ 2:15PM|#
      “So let me get this straight…if you’re pregnant or a minority, it’s okay to break the laws, cuss out the cops and then physically strike them?”

      Ever drive 36 in a 35 zone, jmomls?
      Are you a minority, jmomls?
      Or just a raging asshole?

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