3.29.2015

Indict the Others Too (#BryceMasters #PoliceBrutality #BlackLivesMatter)

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. —A federal grand jury has returned a four-count indictment against a former Independence, Missouri, police Officer Timothy Runnels.

According to the indictment, Runnels violated the constitutional rights of a minor who was in his custody and obstructed the subsequent investigation.

An incident report released in September showed that Runnels stopped Bryce Masters, 17, and smelled marijuana from the passenger's side window.

Runnels asked Masters to step out of the car, but he refused.

Cellphone video shows Runnels using a Taser on Masters.

According to the federal indictment, Runnels continuously deployed a Taser against Masters while he was on the ground and not posing a threat to Runnels or others.

The indictment also states, "Runnels deliberately dropped the minor headfirst onto the ground."

Runnels is no longer with the Independence Police Department.

He faces 10 years in prison for each of two counts of violating Masters' civil rights.
(Source)
I Googled Bryce Masters this morning to see if he got any justice for getting tasered into a coma - literally into a coma - last September. Because the taser prongs hit him near his heart, Bryce suffered cardiac arrest and spent months recovering from brain injury.

Some commenters have argued Bryce didn't show enough respect and shouldn't have refused to step out of the car.  Y'all, let me break it down for you.  I grew up in West Virgina, a 96% white state.  Cops will terrorize whomever they can terrorize and get away with it - young white boys from the parks, women driving alone, disabled people - they don't give a shit. If they sense you are "vulnerable" in some way, they go in for jugular.  Hell, while Bryce was being tasered in Independence, this was going on in Westover.



And unlike Bryce, there's been no update for this guy since September, 2014.

So when Bryce Masters is probably factoring in all this from the behind the wheel of his car (along with the recent hefty string of dead people), I can see why the boy might have hesitated.  Now, I'm not saying he should've violated a direct order from a cop...but I understand.

I congratulate the Masters family for getting justice, and rather swiftly so. Runnels was taken off the force two months after the incident and was indicted this very week. And here's hoping he rots in prison for every single day of those ten years he's facing.

This was in Independence, Missouri, by the way, in case some of you weren't paying attention. Bryce's parents told their attorney they trusted the legal process, and the legal process appeared to come through for them. How come it couldn't do the same for Michael Brown's family, some 233 miles away in Ferguson?  These events only took place about a month apart.  The Independence cop was indicted; the FBI confirmed Runnels used excessive force - and Bryce is still alive.  So why isn't this bigger news? Why aren't more mainstream outlets reporting on this interesting development rather than, say, Levi Pettit's fauxpology?

*blink*  Three guesses why.

9 comments:

  1. Because even non-Black people will start distrusting the police. I don't know but America is really famous for its numerous detective/Crime TV series, "FBI [inserts name]", "NCIS", "Cold Case", The Mentalist", ...The USA seems to love TV series like that to feel safer or trust the police I guess. Since the police always does justice (find the real murderer) at the end while showing empathy to the victims and righteousness.

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    1. That's a great point you brought up.

      TV can influence a lot of vulnerable minds. I remembered when these shows first came out, people was fixated about forensic/pathology work because of shows like those. Even people who had not idea what it was just wanted to be forensic artist..scientist because TV made it look interesting to , them. Now that these shows have dropped in popularity , you don't hear people talk about being forensic scientist/ artists or pathologist as much ,unless they always wanted to be that.

      I also think that same about the influences of shows like NCIS. They always make the detectives, cops ..like you say ..appear like they're on the side of victims but in reality, that number has dipped and continue to dip significantly because of incidents like the ones we've seen with Michael Brown without rightful convictions. Even in the past, it was bad..when I think about it, the Watts situation is repeating itself in 2015.

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    2. "Because even non-Black people will start distrusting the police."

      That's exactly what I was thinking. Whites for the most part still believe cops are there to protect and serve and if they knew they were killed by the cops too something would actually be done. In this society nothing is valid or real until it happens to white people. So the media has to keep it hush.

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    3. I also think that same about the influences of shows like NCIS. They always make the detectives, cops ..like you say ..appear like they're on the side of victims

      Shows which portray American law enforcement as selfless, moral, heroic figures are fucking laughable. It's a classic case of Hollywood simply feeding us the opposite of reality.

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  2. I'm glad that Bryce got justice. I remembered reading about him and I don't care how much marijuana( which has become legal in some states) this guy had, it doesn't justify this guy being beating beaten buy these rogues.

    I bet you that those same people who told him that Bryce should have been more respectful of the law, wouldn't be saying that if it happened to them( There was actually a case of a White man who would say the same thing about people like Bryce,until it happened to him. Now he advocates for anti-brutality). With some White people or blinded minorities, I really do believe that police brutality only happens/belongs to only Black people and that they're immune from prejudice of any kind. Ha! let them keep thinking that...they'll see,especially ,if they're minorities.

    Out of all of the races of people that are supposed to be immune from this would be White people,but as we can see with Bryce, that isn't always the case and even those the rate of police brutality of Whites is ..in comparison..far lower than minorities..it still happens to some of them. Not even they are totally immune from the actions of police. .nobody is safe from the police.

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    1. ...There was actually a case of a White man who would say the same thing about people like Bryce, until it happened to him. Now he advocates for anti-brutality). With some White people or blinded minorities, I really do believe that police brutality only happens/belongs to only Black people and that they're immune from prejudice of any kind. Ha! let them keep thinking that...they'll see, especially, if they're minorities.

      When this starts happening to good…decent law-abiding white folk then its Obviously a problem with the police. This is the way it always happens. Usually whites are without Empathy as long as said abuses happen to People of Color (Most of them deserved it anyway they figure). Yet, the moment it starts creeping into Their reality it’s like police brutality is something they discovered all on their own.

      They’ll be cries for reform I’m sure. Cries for moratoriums on current police procedure/training, because when something makes white people uncomfortable, “we have to change it, and then pretend it’s the way it’s always been. First you fix history, then you lock that s–t down. Forever, in a vault.”

      Nothing is local with whites, their concerns are always Global, therefore its incumbent upon Congress to enact legislation so that these tragedies (brutality against white citizens) can never happen again. Hence, the victims of Police brutality must be synonymous with white faces (if the law is to have any teeth). One case will stand apart from all others. One case will be publicized that pricks the consciousness of the American public. Some white victim (the poster child for change) will have a law named after them to make it a matter of record. Only then will things change in how police officers do their jobs. A word of caution (and officers should take note): Should you abuse a black person (in the performance of your sworn duty) the department will stand behind you 100 percent. BUT… and this is important: Should you abuse a white citizen, (in a blatant disregard for police procedure) justice will be swift and severe, of that you can be certain.

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    2. " When this starts happening to good...decent law-abiding white folk then it's Obviously as said problem with the police. This is the way it always happens. Usually whites are without Empathy as long S said abuses happen to People of Color ( Most of them deserved it anyway they figure). Yet, the moment it's start creeping into Their reality it's like the police brutality is something they discovered on their own"

      So freakin" true. As long as it isn't them or one of their love ones ,they could care about minorities being brutalized by them and when I still here an think what you said about it possibly creeping up to them, they'll think about it and one of these days it may do just that. They thought that when Crack was brought into the inner cities of LA, White folks didn't think that only Black folks would be affected by this crisis or when streetgangs started to move to other non familiar grounds, they only thought that Blacks and Latinos would feel the wrath of it but as we can see..it is far from the truth and it's taking place in their neck of the woods as much as it is in the inner cities of America. If they're not careful with their naive ignorance, they will be next and like you just say they will columbusize this pretending that police brutality is a new problem that only affects White people.

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    3. So true. *nods*

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  3. So much truth. Nothing is an issue until it affects white people in significant numbers- medical research, welfare etc and the bodies that these changes are enacted upon or strewn the path before reform and mostly black and brown. This is how the massive increase in incarceration and brutality amongst black women has gone mostly unnoticed, how Native 1 in 3 women can expect to be raped at least once in their lives, yet the image of an ideal victim who recieves justice is white women.

    I remember the shock many white people had as they witnessed the brutality meted out during the various Occupy movements. They were shocked that the police would handle some of them that way, so used to their white privilege restricting brutality mainly to POC. It was a wake up call to many of them that their whiteness would only protect them up until they started fucking with the money boys interests. They never learn. Then they wanna talk over us who have been shouting about our treatment from day dot. When their skulls are being bashed in suddenly we are on the same side and they need us to shore up their protests (and deflect attention from their white bodies in the process). i am forever done. I do not want or need them as allies unless they are fully committed to living a decolonised life. Things are only going to get worse and they'll need our help and expertise more and more and I am not here for it!!

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