Brickbats

Brickbat: At Least No One Was Shot

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Lourdes Ponce says her 16-year-old son is both autistic and epileptic. During a recent visit to a Fresno, California, El Pollo Loco, the boy had a seizure in a bathroom and fell to the floor. Ponce told her daughter to call 911. "We called paramedics for help, we did not call police," she said. Cops showed up anyway, and they handcuffed the teen and tried to put him in the back of a patrol car. The boy began to vomit, but Ponce says the cops did nothing to keep him from choking. Finally, she retrieved paperwork showing the boy has seizures and EMS was able to take him to a hospital. In a statement, the Fresno Police Department says the situation is under investigation.

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  2. Just when I didn’t think my opinion of cops could get any lower.

    1. At least it’s wasn’t a swat team that arrived to throw a grenade into the bathroom.

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  4. EDITOR’S NOTE: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that the teen was arrested. It has been updated to clarify that he was only handcuffed.

    They weren’t their arresting handcuffs, they were their medical handcuffs.

    1. They could have resorted to their medical tasers like they did with the erratic driver driving erratically because he was having a heart attack and refused to respond to the officer’s command to get out of the car, again, due to the fact that he was having a heart attack. (I’m not sure if the officer was later given a commendation for his retconned heroic act of MacGuyvering a defibrillator but it wouldn’t surprise me.)

      1. I’m kind of surprised that there hasn’t been a case yet of “the subject was non-responsive after I shot him, so I shot him again”

        1. STOP RESISTING! *BLAM* STOP RESISTING! *BLAM*

    2. They weren’t their arresting handcuffs, they were their medical handcuffs.

      He should be glad they weren’t the BDSM handcuffs.

    3. arrest: seize by legal authority and take into custody.

      So if this kid was not arrested, then was he seized by iligitimate authority? It does not make the cops look any better for pretending this was not an arrest.

  5. And nothing else happened.

    CB

  6. Well, I can see where the message might have gotten scrambled when you’re calling 911 about an emergency involving a crazy chicken. “He’s locked in the bathroom and we can hear some thrashing about!” 911 operator probably thought she was saving a chicken from a most heinous violation.

    And good luck trying to make a case that 911 screwed up by sending the police instead of the paramedics – the courts have ruled that the police are allowed to accompany fire or medical personnel to protect them, work crowd control, traffic control, whatever, and if the cops get there before the ambulance you’ve summoned because your uncle seems to be having a psychotic episode, well, too bad about your uncle getting shot to death. Oh, and if the local TV news shows up with the cops, you have to let them barge in to film your uncle getting shot to death – it’s a public interest exception to the Fourth.

    1. Sending cops on calls for EMTs is policy in many areas.

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  8. I’m not sure I completely follow. Kid has seizure, bathroom door locked. Door gets opened, mom tells daughter to call 911. Next, kid is puking and getting hand cuffed. What did the daughter tell 911?? He brother was sick and needed EMT, or something else? When the police arrived, I take it the boy was laying down with his head in his mother’s lap while she tried to reassure him that everything was going to be OK. Was he ripped out of his mother’s arms and handcuffed? I distrust cops immediately by default, but something isn’t adding up here.

    1. To unreason, the details of the story doesnt matter.

      ALL Cops bad ALWAYS!

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    2. “What did the daughter tell 911?? He brother was sick and needed EMT, or something else?”

      It is policy in a lot of areas to always send a police squad along with any call for EMTs.

      Seizures can last a while and can lead to violent thrashing of the arms and legs. Not that this would justify the cops restraining the kid.

      1. I had to call 911 recently for an ambulance because I was experiencing difficulty breathing and I live alone. My nearest family is nearly a hour away. A cop came to the door first. I don’t know if the cop arrived first or with the ambulance, but the cop did not come to my door until the ambulance had backed into my driveway.

      2. I get that, I know police often follow or arrive before EMT – most cops are also certified EMT. But what did the daughter tell 911? “My brother is having a seizure – send medical help!” Or “my brother is freaking out in the Polo Loco and my mom told me to call for help.” I read the attached article and it doesn’t really fill in the gaps. Where was the mother when the cops arrived, and where was the son? I wouldn’t be surprised if the kid was ripped from his mother’s arms and had a flash bang grenade tossed into his pants, but I am genuinely curious what else happened because this story doesn’t say much.

        1. You could have tried watching the video with the linked article.

          “Where was the mother when the cops arrived, and where was the son?”

          Mom and son were still in the bathroom. The video doesn’t sow the handcuffing, but it does show mom and one officer in the bathroom, the officer is holding up the already handcuffed kid. If you ask me, it didn’t look like the kid was capable of even standing on his own.

          1. I missed the video – yes, that does fill in my questions a bit. Looks like same old cop bullshit.

    3. I distrust cops immediately by default, but something isn’t adding up here.

      What are you suggesting? Mom’s taken them both captive and the kid ingested something to attract police attention?

      Partial or focal onset seizures don’t always generate loss of consciousness or paralysis.

      Not sure what you’re suggesting that would make sense that the police believed there was some sort of crime or something that justifies handcuffs.

      I half expect that policy dictates that people in the back of the squad car always get handcuffed and procedures were followed.

      1. “I half expect that policy dictates that people in the back of the squad car always get handcuffed and procedures were followed.”

        The wrong procedures. What the fuck was the reason for needing to put him in the back of the squad car. Why not leave him where he was until the EMTs got there?

        1. What the fuck was the reason for needing to put him in the back of the squad car.

          I’ve never been to an El Pollo Loco but I assume their advertising doesn’t involve epileptics seizing on their floors. If I had to pick a place for someone who’s seizing to flail around and bang into things, everything else being equal, the back of a police car isn’t the last place I would choose. Certainly above tile restaurant floor anyway.

          As I said above, not all seizures are lying on the floor twitching. Not saying they should’ve handcuffed him but we wouldn’t have batted an eye if the EMTs strapped him to a gurney. And not to give the police too much credit, handcuffing in lieu of medical immobilization is a pretty dumb idea/mistake.

          1. The cops shouldn’t fucking move, much less restrain people in medical distress due to seizures or anything else. They don’t know what self inflicted injuries he might have sustained. In some cases moving the patient could make things worse.

            If the patient needs to be immobilized for medical reasons, that is a decision for the EMTs to make.

          2. “we wouldn’t have batted an eye if the EMTs strapped him to a gurney.”

            Correct, for one thing because generally they aren’t doing it to restrain the patient, it’s to keep the patient from falling off. I’ve been on a gurney, those things are too fucking narrow.

  9. Since when were seizures and excuse to not obey the police?

    1. Exactly, the law doesn’t magically stop applying to you when you’re feeling w little icky.

    2. Since the patient is incapacitated and incapable of responding in any way?

  10. When the only tool you have is a hammer every problem looks like a nail…

    1. When the only tool you have is a 9mm, every dog looks like a target.

  11. I already know never to call the cops. Now we know never to call 911. Because the 911 call goes to EMT, fire, and *POLICE*. All it takes is for one 911 operator to be a cunt and sent the police out to shoot your dog.

    Best just to lay there dying of a stroke than to call 911.

    1. An old neighbor of mine used to say “Never call the cops unless you’ve got a dead body and a damn good explanation.”

    2. Best just to lay there dying of a stroke than to call 911.

      Most larger urban areas have private ambulance service. I’m not 100% clear on if the emergency calls get the same police escort or not. I do know that I’ve pulled over for private ambulances multiple times without a fire truck or squad car in sight.

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  12. Why was he arrested handcuffed? Seems relevant.

    1. Because cops are idiots + “Respect Ma Authority” + Fuck You That’s Why.

      Read the linked article. Watch the news video with it. The cops have to hold the kid up, he wasn’t even capable of standing on his own when they handcuffed him.

      There doesn’t seem to be any legitimate reason for it.

      And this bit from the linked article should be read as an admission by the cops that the fucked up and had no valid reason to restrain the kid.

      Ponce tells Action News police stopped by the hospital Friday with this “certificate of release” form – paperwork that states the teen will not be arrested.

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