Dallas cops support then suspend cop filmed attacking protester

One of the issues I keep raising here is the right to film cops while they are working. A recent incident during the Occupy Dallas protest, that John first wrote about late last night, shows how important this is.

Note the cop’s hand about to
shove protester off the ledge.

Here is the first news report:

After being directed to get down, one of of the protesters became aggressive and assaulted a police officer.

And here is the update that the Dallas Chief of Police made via Facebook:

Last night, the Dallas Police Department discovered a new video of the Occupy Dallas demonstration that occurred on November 5, 2011. The video shows a Dallas Police Officer, who was working off-duty for Bank of America, push a demonstrator off a planter in front of the building.

Chief David Brown has ordered the officer placed on restricted duty and initiated a formal investigation into the officer’s actions. The restricted duty assignment will also prohibit the officer from working off-duty employment until the departmental investigation is complete.

H/T to Carlos Miller who has more details on his site.

It is the video that makes the difference. Without the video the attacker would be back on the beat and the victim would be facing a court hearing and a likely prison sentence.

One of the most important facts that Occupy Wall Street has brought to light is just how poorly trained and ill disciplined many US local police forces are and the indifference of many public officials to cases of abuse.

Major Bloomberg has had over a month now to condemn Anthony Bologna’s pepper spray attack on an unarmed protester. He has not even recognized the need to comment when the officer said he would do it again. Now we know where Bloomberg stands.

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