Police Abuse

St. Paul City Attorney: Not My Job to Second Guess Cop's Decision

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St. Paul city attorney
City of St. Paul

As prosecutors in St. Louis county continue to investigate the shooting of an unarmed Michael Brown by a Ferguson police officer, some people are concerned the elected county prosecutor, Bob McCulloch, won't pursue the case fairly. Some activists have called for his removal, citing a history that suggests a pro-cop bias; his father was a cop killed in the line of duty and one of his first cases in the early 1990s involved defending police officers  that shot and killed two unarmed men while undercover by stressing the victims were alleged drug dealers.

McCulloch's comfort with the police department is not unique; it's exactly the type of relationship many prosecutors have with their local law enforcement agencies, on which they rely for a steady stream of prosecutable cases for building their record. The same office that counts on cops to give it solid case, that works almost as a team with law enforcement, is also charged, almost everywhere in the country, with investigating allegations of police misconduct, such as shootings. Police unions, and the power of cops and prosecutors as government agents politicians don't generally want to cross (who wants to end up being prosecuted frivolously?), help perpetuate this obvious conflict of interest of a status quo.

In the case of Chris Lollie, the St. Paul resident harassed by a cop over his identification despite there being no law in Minnesota about carrying ID and despite him being in a public area, the city attorney in St. Paul, in discussing the case, inadvertently managed to distill the problem of prosecutors' relationship with police into one sentence, bolded below. Via The Pioneer Press:

Lollie was charged with misdemeanor trespassing, disorderly conduct and obstructing the legal process. The city attorney's office dismissed the charges July 31.

"Our job is not to second-guess the decision that officers on the streets make to maintain order and protect the public," [St. Paul city attorney Sara] Grewing said. "Our job as prosecutors is to determine whether those elements of a crime are present to prove to a jury, and we just didn't have that here."

If you're in the habit of not second guessing the people empowered to use violence against the rest of us to induce compliance, you're unlikely to be second guessing them even when you're supposed to be investigating their actions.

Lollie was harassed by a cop that was unequivocally in the wrong, threatened with the loss of his freedom over charges the prosecutor's office itself decided couldn't stick. That police face no consequences, and in fact are defended, when they make such harmful mistakes, putting a person's freedom and even life (comply or die) on the line ought to unconscionable for everyone who spent August saying they cared about what happened to Michael Brown.

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  1. Fuck you. It’s exactly your job.

    1. Pfft, and what’s a serf like you going to do about it? She’s just upholding the higher standard* that our boys in blue are sworn to! Why do you hate the officers that maintain ORDER and protect the public? What do you have to hide, huh?

      *Higher standard of proof, not behavior.

    2. No it’s not, any more than it’s judges jobs to second guess legislators.

      My guess is she’s bucking for an appointment to the federal bench.

  2. What a disgrace to the legal profession. Your job honey is to evaluate the legality of your clients’ actions. That necessarily implies second guessing them. If your job was to never second guess them and just validate whatever they did, we wouldn’t need to hire a lawyer in your position. We could just have the receptionist use a rubber stamp.

    What a fucking idiot.

    1. How come more prosecuting attorneys don’t get disbarred for frivolous bullshit like this.

      1. because the only thing that gets you disbarred is stealing from your clients.

        1. Unfortunately, this. The prosecutor’s bar is very, very powerful.

        2. How in the hell is levying bullshit fines and ruining the lives of innocent people not considered “stealing from them”?

    2. According to Krugman, Libertarians see problems where there are none. So maybe we’re all just imagining this prosecutor is a ‘fucking idiot’.

      1. Libertarians see problems where persons of low intellect, like Paul Krugman, see none.

    3. That’s the thing,the cops are not her clients.

  3. I heard that idiot women on Fox’s the five say she was a DA,’I was on the right side ‘ she said.Can’t recall her name,I’m sure you folks know who I mean

    1. Fox is full of idiot women. How is it fucking possible for anyone here to know who you mean?

      1. Fox The news is full of idiot women. How is it fucking possible for anyone here to know who you mean?

        At least Fox has eye candy.

        1. At least Fox has eye candy.

          And that’s what makes them idiots. Only unattractive women can be smart.

        2. Fox does have delicious eye candy displayed behind the 2-dimensional glass wall of our LCD’s and the news is full of idiots. Our vectors seem to be paralleling nicely on the path of objectification and branching knowledge. 😉

      2. I stand corrected,long dark hair and too much make up

  4. Freedom has to have limits and that’s what prosecutors and cops are for… a tough-on-deviation team designed to hold society together for the government sycophants called socialist progressives and divinely-inspired-book followers.

  5. It was very progressive of St. Paul to hire someone with Down’s as a city attorney, but maybe they should get her an advisor for like, legal stuff.

  6. Why would the city attorney get involved, when the union has an arbitrator ready and willing to justify the cops’ actions?

  7. Fuck you cunt, that is EXACTLY YOUR JOB!

    Ahh, that feels better.

  8. The local alternative rag, City Pages, has been doing a much better job of covering this story. Here they show Facebook post where the bank showed the area Chris Lollie was supposedly sitting in and asked people to sit down and take a load off.

    http://blogs.citypages.com/blo…..arrest.php

    To me it sounds like the bank’s rent-a-cops have gone on a rampage lately against any loiterers and Lollie ran into that. Then when the real cops showed up, Lollie got wrapped around the axle with them because he refused to obey

  9. So where’s the Twin Cities libertarian meet-and-greet?

    1. I don’t care as long it is on the west side of the river. No way, I’m going to St. Paul.

      Tundra and I are both up in Maple Grove. I don’t know about him, but I feel like the whole Libertarian Moment is at risk because we are so bunched up. One natural disaster out here and 2 entire HyRers are wiped out.

  10. Alt Text: Cunt!

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