“Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.”
~ Sun Tzu (544BC – 496BC, “The Art of War”).
Cops (i.e., FBI Agents, Special Deputy U.S. Marshals, ATF Agents, Deputy Sheriffs, State Troopers, Municipal Police Officers, Probation & Parole Officers, Prison Guards, etc.) and Their Powerful and Influential “Law Enforcement and Corrections Officers’ Labor Unions” That Represent Cops truly understand the meaning of Sun Tzu‘s above advice.
The Fact is, Over Many Decades Cops and Their Powerful Labor Unions have Gamed “The System” so that Most of the Time, They Invariably Win, while Us Civilians invariably Lose Most of the Time– “Heads They Win, Tails You Lose.” That is because, Methodically, over many years, Cops and Their Powerful Labor Unions have “Stacked the Deck” in Their Favor to the Maximum Extent that they can get away with.
There are Several Systemic Reasons why is is Very Difficult to Hold Brutal and/or Corrupt Cops Accountable. The fact is: Cops have enormous powers that protect their brutality, corruption, and/or unconstitutional acts/behavior. One of the reasons behind this is because Cops are NOT subject to any meaningful systemic, built-in restrictions & deterrence that will prevent/deter the Cops from breaking the law and violating Civilians’ Civil Rights & Civil Liberties. Some of the powerful, “Built-In Protections” and “Structural Safeguards” that Cops enjoy are:
(1). QUALIFIED IMMUNITY. This judicial doctrine makes it extremely hard to hold Cops accountable and personally/individually financially responsible for violating the law, and hurting or killing Civilians.
(Read Article #1)
Frequently Asked Questions About Qualified Immunity:
(Read Article #2)
Clarence Thomas Chides Supreme Court for Ignoring Qualified Immunity: ‘I Continue to Have Strong Doubts…’; by Colin Kalmbacher, on June 15th, 2020.
(Read Article #3)
What is Qualified Immunity, and What Does It Have to Do With Police Reform?
by Nathaniel Sobel, in Lawfareblog, on June 6, 2020.
(Read Article #4)
Unqualified Impunity: When Government Officials Break the Law, They Often Get Away With It; by Attorney Katherine Hawkins, on October 22, 2020.
2). POWERFUL LAW ENFORCEMENT AND CORRECTIONS OFFICERS’ LABOR UNIONS PRESSURE AND/OR BULLY OUR LOCAL/STATE/FEDERAL POLITICIANS TO SIGN “COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENTS/CONTRACTS” THAT ARE EXTREMELY FAVORABLE TO COPS. These “Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBA)” (i.e., Cops’ Labor Union Contracts) include very favorable contractual provisions such as:
If a Cop is found to have flagrantly violated the law or departmental policies and thus is found to owe an injured Civilian (or the family of a Civilian that they had unlawfully killed) Money, nevertheless, the Cop will not have to pay a dime out of his pocket. Instead, due to INDEMNIFICATION CLAUSES Written in the CBA, “We The People” (the Tax Payers) will be the ones On the Hook for paying the full amount to the injured Civilian (or the Family of the Deceased Civilian).
(Read Article #5)
Across the U.S., Police Union Contracts Shield Officers From Scrutiny and Discipline; by Reade Levinson, on (Jan. 13, 2017).
Reuters examined police union contracts across the country and found a pattern of protections afforded officers: Many contracts erase disciplinary records or allow police to forfeit sick leave for suspensions. Meantime, residents face hurdles in pursuing complaints.
(Read Article #6)
Editorial: Here’s how to hold police accountable: Don’t let their unions give money to prosecutors; by The Times Editorial Board (Los Angeles Times Opinion), on June 1, 2020.
(Read Article #7)
How Police Unions and Arbitrators Keep Abusive Cops on the Street – Officers fired for misconduct often appeal the decision and get reinstated by obscure judges in secretive proceedings; by Conor Friedersdorf, on December 2, 2014.
(Read Article #8)
When Police Unions Impede Justice; by The New York Times Editorial Board, on Sept. 3, 2016.
Alternative Web-Link: When Police Unions Impede Justice
(Read Article #9)
Why Police Unions Protect the Worst Cops; by German Lopez (@germanrlopez)(email@example.com), on Dec 18, 2014, 9:40am EST.
(Read Article #10)
Meet the Men Who Scared de Blasio Away From Police Reform – NYPD officer unions taught the NYC mayor a lesson in 2014. He hasn’t forgotten it; by Ben Adler (Ben Adler is City & State’s senior editor), on June 2, 2020.
(Read Article #11)
How Police Unions Got Their Power: The Rise of the PBA and Lack of Accountability in the NYPD; by Matthew Vaz, in the New York Daily News, on June 13, 2020.
(Read Article #12)
How Cities Lost Control of Police Discipline – In the chaos of 1960s Detroit, a fledgling police union laid the groundwork for a system that, to this day, constrains discipline for officers accused of misconduct; by Kim Barker, Michael H. Keller and Steve Eder, in the N. Y. Times, on Dec. 22, 2020.
Alternative Web-Link: https://archive.is/PifIi
(3). PEACE OFFICER’S BILL OF RIGHTS (Law Enforcement and Corrections Officers’ Bill of Rights, aka LEOBR, aka LEOBoR). These are special State Statues that Labor Unions that Represent Cops have gotten State Legislators to write into State Law, that provide special and very “favorable laws” and “special rights” to cops (that are not available to us regular folks). As just one example: if a Civilian shoots someone in self-defense, they are immediately interrogated by Cops to the full extent allowed under the law, and the Cops Will Lie (Similar to “Testilying”), if necessary to, to Trick and Deceive the Civilian. But, if a Cop Brutalizes or Kills Someone, due to provisions in that State’s Peace Officer’s Bill of Rights, the Cop can’t be questioned for, usually 3-10 days, depending on the particular provision in State Law. This creates a huge built-in advantage for Cops who’re thus able to get their stories straight so that their version of what took place is told in a manner that is calculated and favorable to them, and “paints them in a good light.”
(Read Article #13)
Why Firing a Bad Cop Is Damn Near Impossible – A brief history of the “Law Enforcement Bill of Rights”; by Mike Riggs, in Reason.
(Read Article #14)
The Police Officers’ Bill of Rights Creates a Double Standard, by Attorney Paul Butler who is a Afro-American former prosecutor:
(4). ANOTHER TRICK-OF-THE-TRADE THAT COPS RESORT TO WHEN THEY GET CAUGHT HAVING DONE MISCONDUCT OR HAVING FLAGRANTLY VIOLATED THEIR DEPARTMENTAL POLICY IS, THEY EITHER RESIGN so they don’t risk losing their “State Law Enforcement Certification” issued by the State and thereby they can get newly hired by another law enforcement agency, AND/OR THEY RETIRE knowing that they will receive Very Generous Pension Payments, Very Good Health Benefits, and other Retirement Benefits.
[eg., The Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act, LEOSA (18 USC §926C) that provides them Universal Handgun Concealed Carry Reciprocity Across All of the 50 States].
(Read Article #15)
A 50-State Look at Officer Decertification for Sex Incidents; by Tribune Wire Reports, on Nov. 01, 2015, 5:00AM.
(Read Article #16)
AP: Broken System Lets Problem Officers Jump From Job to Job; by Nomaan Merchant, on November 3, 2015.
(Read Article #17)
Once, Twice, Three Times Deputy Resigns Before He Can be Fired by Law Enforcement Agency; by Randy Travis, on FOX 5 Atlanta (Gwinnett County), on July 24, 2020.
(Read Article #18)
Florida Police Officer Fired for the 7th Time Says He’ll Get His Job Back Again; by Brian Niemietz, in the New York Daily News, on May 29, 2021.
(5). ONE WAY THE POWER OF LAW ENFORCEMENT AND CORRECTIONS OFFICERS’ UNIONS IS SHOWN IS IN HOW THEY’RE ABLE TO BULLY AND NEGOTIATE AND PRESSURE FAVORABLE-TO-COPS PROVISIONS/CLAUSES INTO THE COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENTS (CBAs) that are signed between the City/County/State/Federal and the Law Enforcement and Corrections Agencies.
Cops’ Leadership and their Powerful Labor Unions also employ a tactic called “TRIANGULATION.”
Thereby, Cops are able to get loyalty and favorable treatment from BOTH the Republican politicians AND the Democrat politicians. This is in part because, labor unions (including Cops’ Labor Unions) have traditionally been Democrat/Progressive institutions and have traditionally been supported by Democrats. However, Cops have traditionally been a heavily voting Republican/Conservative block because most Cops are Republican/Conservative. Hence, Cops (in their individual selves) AND their Powerful Law Enforcement and Corrections Labor Unions (in their organizational selves) have been in the unique position of being able to enjoy the Support, and being able to get Favorable-to-Cops Legislation and Contractual Provisions passed and signed into law by both Republican and Democrat politicians at the federal, State, county, and municipal levels.
(6). WHEN NEGOTIATING AND CRAFTING LAW ENFORCEMENT AND CORRECTIONS OFFICERS’ LABOR CONTRACTS (i.e., the COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENTS), LAW ENFORCEMENT AND CORRECTIONS OFFICERS’ LABOR UNIONS INFLUENCE AND/OR PRESSURE FEDERAL\STATE\COUNTY\MUNICIPAL POLITICIANS TO INCLUDE ARBITRATION PROVISIONS, FOR THE BENEFIT OF COPS WHO ARE SUBJECT TO DISCIPLINARY PROCEEDINGS.
(Read Article #19)
To Hold Police Accountable, Ax the Arbitrators – Communities Should Have the Power to Fire Abusive Officers. But That Power Often Rests With an Obscure Group of Unelected Labor Arbitrators; by The New York Times Editorial Board, on Oct. 3, 2020.
(Read Article #20)
Half of Fired Minnesota Police Officers Get Their Jobs Back Through Arbitration; by Jon Collins, in MPR News, on July 9, 2020.
(Read Article #21)
Police in Misconduct Cases Stay On Force Through Arbitration; by The Associated Press (Seattle) and MPR News, on June 24, 2020.
(7). SHERIFFS, STATE POLICE COLONELS/COMMISSIONERS, AND POLICE CHIEFS READILY SIGN AGREEMENTS (MEMORANDA OF UNDERSTANDING– “MOU”s) WITH FEDERAL LAW ENFORCEMENT AND/OR CORRECTIONS AGENCIES TO “LEND” THEIR ‘DEPUTY SHERIFF’/’STATE TROOPER’/’CITY POLICE OFFICER’ TO ONE OF MANY FEDERAL TASK FORCES SCATTERED ACROSS EVERY STATE. THIS ENDOWS THE SHERIFFS, STATE POLICE COLONELS/COMMISSIONERS, AND POLICE CHIEFS WITH SEVERAL BENEFITS (INCLUDING FINANCIAL) FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE (DOJ), DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (DHS), AND/OR DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE (DOD).
(Note: “Special Deputy U.S. Marshals” are Deputy Sheriffs, State Troopers, and Municipal/City Police Officers who wear their regular uniforms while on duty, but who have been given Limited Federal Arrest Powers, and are thus Federal Agents. These limited federal arrest powers and other benefits (i.e., Wages, Health Insurance, Retirement Pension benefits, etc.) that the Special Deputy U.S. Marshals enjoy are delineated in a Contract that is signed between The Federal Government and the original agency that employed the Deputy Sheriff, State Trooper, or Municipal/City Police Officer, and the contract is called a “Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)“).
(Read Article #22)
‘Blow His Head Off’: Supreme Court Must Strip Federal Agents of Absolute Immunity
Our view: The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act is stalled in Congress, so it’s now up to the justices. There should be no Constitution-free zone in the USA; by The Editorial Board, in USA Today, on Sept. 23, 2021.
(Read Article #23)
If the Police Lie, Should They be Held Liable? Often the Answer is No; by Shaila Dewan, in The New York Times, on September 12, 2021.
(Read Article #24)
St. Paul Officer Center of Supreme Court Petition Seeking to Remove Immunity Protections From Federal and Deputized Officers; by Deanna Weniger, in Pioneer Press, on August 22, 2021.
(Read Article #25)
How to Hold Federal Law-Enforcement Officers Accountable; by Anya Bidwell and Patrick Jaicomo, on June 26, 2021.
(Read Article #26)
Opinion: State-Federal Task Forces are Out of Control – Specialized police forces are often self-funded, report to no one, and can duck lawsuits by playing games with state-federal jurisdiction; Opinion by Radley Balko, in the Washington Post, on February 14, 2020.
(Read Article #27)
Supreme Court Must Decide: Will Federal Police Remain Above the Law? Cases Appealed to Supreme Court Seek to Hold Federal Officers Accountable for Constitutional Violations; by John Kramer (Vice President for Communications), on August 9, 2021.
And let’s remember: per Castle Rock v. Gonzales, 545 U.S. 748 (2005) and Warren v. District of Columbia, 444 A.2d. 1 (D.C. Ct. of Ap. 1981), COPS HAVE NO LEGAL DUTY TO COME AND SAVE A PERSON FROM IMMINENT DANGER, due to the “Public Duty Doctrine”. This means, as far as the law is concerned, if someone attacks you or your loved ones, there is no law that requires the Cops to come and save you and your loved ones from imminent danger.
(Read Article #28)
Floyd Case Sheds Light on the Power of Police Unions to Thwart Justice; by Caitlin Dickson (Yahoo News Reporter), on June 4, 2020.
(Read Article #29)
Cops Can’t be Allowed to Police Themselves If We Want Real Criminal Justice Reform. Police reform is overwhelmingly popular, but basic reforms are undercut by police at every turn. This is because police unions and departments create policy loopholes that essentially allows them to police themselves. This is how bad cops avoid accountability; by Anthony L. Fisher, on April 18, 2021.
Alternative Weblink: Cops Can’t be Allowed to Police Themselves
(Read Article #30)
How a Deadly Police Force Ruled a City – After Years of Impunity, the Police in Vallejo, California, Took Over the City’s Politics and Threatened Its People; by Shane Bauer, in the New Yorker, on November 16, 2020.
(Read Article #31)
Big Money From the Cops is Becoming Politically Toxic. A Way to Remove Obstacles to Reform — Plus a Move in SF to Start to “Defund” The SFPD; by Tim Redmond, on June 5, 2020.
(Read Article #32)
Editorial: Here’s How to Hold Police Accountable: Don’t Let Their Labor Unions Give Money to Prosecutors; by The Times Editorial Board, in the Los Angeles Times, on June 1, 2020.
(Read Article #33)
Opinion: Financial Incentives Have Given Us Ever More Aggressive Policing — If We Want Real Change, We Must Change Those Incentives. Follow the Money; by Jason Brennan, in Market Watch, on June 10, 2020.
(Read Article #34)
Insurers Force Change On Police Departments Long Resistant to It.
The high cost of settlements over police misconduct has led insurers to demand police departments overhaul tactics or forgo coverage; by Kimberly Kindy, in the Washington Post, on Sept. 14, 2022.
(Read Article #35)
Police Settlements: How the Cost of Misconduct Impacts Cities and Taxpayers; by Cheryl Corley, in NPR, on September 19, 2020.
(Read Article #36)
San Francisco Made History When Prosecutors Filed Homicide Charges Against A City Cop. Almost Two Years Later, The Case Still Hasn’t Gone To Trial.
The former police officer accused of killing Keita O’Neil hasn’t even faced a preliminary hearing nearly two years after being charged with manslaughter; by Stephanie K. Baer, in BuzzFeed News, on Sep. 26, 2022.
(Read Article #37)
U.S. Diplomat’s Wife Who Killed 19-Year-Old Motorcyclist in U.K. Collision to Appear Virtually in British Court; by Theresa Braine, in the N. Y. Daily News, on Sep. 26, 2022.
(Read Article #38)
Family Reaches ‘Resolution’ With U.S. Diplomat’s Wife Who Killed Son in UK Car Crash
; by David Matthews, in the New York Daily News, on Sep 21, 2021.
(Read Article #39)
Judge Cuts $7 Billion Charter Spectrum Verdict for Family of a Murdered Customer to $1 Billion; by Richard Lawler, in The Verge, on Sep. 20, 2022.
(Read Article #40)
Vanessa Bryant’s Co-Plaintiff Reaches $20M Settlement with L.A. County Over Leaked Crash Photos; by Charmaine Patterson, in People, on Sep. 20, 2022.
(Read Article #41)
Cleveland’s Black Voters Want Tough Oversight of Cops. Will Police Allow It?
; by Emmanuel Felton, in the Washington Post, on September 26, 2022.
(Read Article #42)
36 Fired DC Police Officers Reinstated, Receive $14 Million in Back Pay; by Brian Farrell, in DC News Now, on Oct. 06, 2022.
(Read Article #43)
Minnesota City Settles Suit With Woman Who Filmed Cops Drawing Guns on Black Motorists; by The Grio Staff, on October 5, 2022.
(Read Article #44)
San Antonio Cop Shoots Teen Eating In His Car, Allegedly Mistakes His Vehicle For Car That Evaded Arrest; by Tomas Kassahun, in Blavity, on October 7, 2022.
(Read Article #45)
Teacher Unions are the Real ‘Dark Money’ Players in School Board Races; by Jarrett Skorup, inThe Hill, on Oct. 08, 2022.
(Read Article #46)
The Public Employee Union Problem; by Jarrett Skorup, on August 16, 2010.
(Read Article #47)
The New Tammany Hall; by Fred Siegel and Daniel Disalvo, on October 12, 2009.
Alternative Weblink: The New Tammany Hall
(Read Article #48)
There’s a New, Massive Database of NYPD Misconduct With 450,000 Records.
The Legal Aid Society collected records from Freedom of Information requests, criminal cases, and more, and made them easy to search; by Edward Ongweso Jr, in VICE, on October 5, 2022.
(Read Article #49)
In Lawsuit Over Police Transparency, Groups Ask for … More Transparency.
A union for Montgomery County police officers asked a judge to seal legal briefs in a lawsuit blocking the release of an officer’s disciplinary files
; by Steve Thompson | WaPo, on Oct. 05, 2022.
Alternative Weblink: In Lawsuit Over Police Transparency, Groups Ask for … More Transparency
(Read Article #50)
St. Louis Judge Orders Civilian Oversight of City Jails to Continue, But Not of Police Work
; by Rebecca Rivas, in the Missouri Independent, on October 12, 2022.
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