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Police brutality at a local venue

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by jrthebassguy, Oct 15, 2006.

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  1. According to a good friend of mine and several people I know in our local scene, a police officer reacted very unprofessionally/aggressively the other night. It started off as a noise complaint, which I understand has happened on a few occasions at this venue in particular.

    My friend Sarah was there when it happened. According to her and others....the police officer just went in, stormed onto the stage, started shouting at their guitarist, slammed their gutiarist onto the ground, then when people tried pulling the officer off, just started tasering anyone in sight....including a 14 year old girl.

    A 90 year old upright bass was broken in the process.

    The crazy thing is, my band played this exact venue not even a month ago, and I've been there many times as a guest - how easily could that have been me?

    This thing is getting posted all over myspace...I've never seen our local scene act this well organized ever.

    You can read more/see some videos here:
  2. Poop-Loops

    Poop-Loops Inactive

    Mar 3, 2006
    Auburn, Washington
    That better make the news. To Protect And Serve, you know...

  3. An article made the Houston Chronicle, our city's biggest paper. Of course, the officer's side of the story is completely different than what I'm hearing. Now, I wasn't there so I can't say what exactly happened, but I know my friend wouldn't lie to me about something like this, and other people's myspaces are telling very similar stories.
  4. FireBug


    Sep 18, 2005
    I figured I would have heard about it already. If there's not something on houstonbands.net about this, then there should be. I'm going to check it now.
  5. UnsungZeros

    UnsungZeros The only winning move is not to play.

    Yeah, if it's true, he was completely out of line.

    A more professional response would have been to find the owner/manager and get him to have the sound guy or the performers to lower their levels.
  6. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    These stories never are first hand, are they? If it's on myspace, it has to be true.
  7. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    Part of the problem is people tried to interfere with a police officer. Don't get hostile towards a police officer. That never ends well. There is where the problem was. If it had been just the guitarist, and everyone else held witness, he would no longer have a job, probably.
  8. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Without question, there is much more to this story than has been posted here.

    A couple unanswered questions, for example.

    Was it the cop's first trip to the venue that night?

    What did the "victim" say to the cop in the two minutes immediately preceding the purported unprovoked attack?

    How many people were around the cop when he started all this indescriminant tasering?

    Was the slammed guitarist the lead guitarist? (Many could use a good slamming.)

    OK, Here is another perspective:

    OK, so let's see. The band was told by the cop to turn it down. Then the pinheads decide to turn it back up before the cop is even out of the building. This pisses the cop off. He goes back, gives a command to the nitwit guitar player who, in all his wisdom, asks, "Why?" rather than comply with the officer's command. When the officer repeats the command, the knucklehead again does not comply and again asks, "Why?". Then you've got a crowd of solid citizens rushing the stage. So the cop has a decision to make: Do I pull my gun, or break out the taser? Next time you decide to rush toward a cop in a crowd, decide whether you want to die over it. They were lucky they only got tased.

    So there's another perspective for you.
  9. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    A taser can only be fired once if you shoot the probes, until the probes are removed, or unless you're zapping the same person repeatedly (which is a no no). Of course, don't let facts get in the way of your second hand tale.

    PS...if a 14 year old was at a music venue unaccompanied by an adult, her parents deserve a tasering too.
  10. UnsungZeros

    UnsungZeros The only winning move is not to play.

    Even if you dont believe the accounts, the videos on the myspace page do speak a great volume, especially the last one where the cop uses his taser seemingly unnecessarily.
  11. Cerb


    Sep 27, 2004
    I'm assuming that be taser he means a stun gun.
  12. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002

    I just read the article. To get a contact stun, you have to be within arms reach of the officer. If they were, regardless if the officers initial actions were correct or not, they deserved it. There is NO legitmate reason to get that close to an officer doing his job. I won't have a chance to see the video tonight, but I'll look at it tomorrow.
  13. DigMe


    Aug 10, 2002
    Waco, TX
    The whole thing that started the issue has been a constant thing in the Houston music scene since I used to hang out at Houston clubs in the early 90's. That issue being no zoning of music clubs. It makes for some kind of neat, eclectic club locations but when the music goes on and you have houses right next door to the clubs the cops get called. It was a constant problem at the former-best-club-in-Houston-before-it-literally-blew-up-one-day-amidst-whisperings -of-mob-involvement, Goat's Head Soup.

    Anyway, that's not the issue though... :smug:

  14. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    Smash, obviously, you don't have any teenage children. As a father, and as an officer, I don't think a 14 year old CHILD has ANY place at a live music venue, unaccompanied by an adult.

    As far as how the whole incident was handled, it probably could have been done differently.

    It's silly for an officer to get involved in an unnecessary physical confrontation, especially in a crowd and without backup.

    I think the way to take care of the whole thing, would have been to become a "paper hanger", rather than get involved in a physical confronation with a band member. Write the venue manager a ticket for unreasonable noise. Write the band members tickets. Any underage drinkers there? I bet there was. Hang some paper on 'em. Any drugs there? Hang some paper on them. When it becomes a lose money situation, the problem would have resolved itself.
  15. UnsungZeros

    UnsungZeros The only winning move is not to play.


    Definitely the most sensible way to handle the situation.
  16. FireBug


    Sep 18, 2005
    The 14-year-old was there with his dad. At least that's what it says on the myspace page...
  17. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002

    I wouldn't want to limit kids access to culture, but I think you have to be smart about it. 14 year olds are not famous for making wise or rationale decisions, especially in the face of peer pressure. For instance, the 14 year old in question here would have had to have rushed the officer in order to get a contact stun. If I had a 14 year old that wanted to go to something like this, they'd go WITH me, or with another trusted adult. I have an 18 year old, a 10 year old, and a 7 year old. Even good kids make bad decisions.
  18. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    Then his dad should have known better to let him get that close. There is nothing that says parents are always wise either. I've seen tons of dumbass parents too!

    Anyway, if the officer did handle it improperly, it'll come out. No department wants an officer out there screwing up, creating bad PR.
  19. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    Again, I haven't seen the video, and can't tonight. I don't disagree with a thing you said. I think the kid is stupid for jumping in either way, but I certainly won't say the officer acted completely properly without knowing and seeing more. The only thing that rubs me the wrong way is the intial post. It was all second hand, and as someone else mentioned, I believe the intial poster has posted similar stories in the past that were never substantiated. Seems like someone with an axe to grind to me.
  20. smperry

    smperry Administrator Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    I didn't read the story, but you're more optimistic than I am. San Francisco has a long history of cops screwing up and the department covering it up.

    I've had cops detain me, frisk/grope me, humiliate me when I wasn't doing anything wrong, unless walking down the street with my wife or cleaning my car is doing something wrong. Haven't been tasered yet, but I wouldn't put it past some of them.

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