Thursday, May 3, 2007

Watch Your Dog!

For those that may belong to the newdowntown group, you probably have gotten some messages about a man named Joe who was 'cuffed and stuffed' by the LAPD because two men claimed that he had stolen their dog.

I wanted to post about this for a few reasons.

First, to make sure that others are aware of the problem. As a new dog owner I want to make sure that others don't have the same problem that Joe has had.

Second, I think this is an important issue because of the police behavior. LAPD has had countless problems over the past years. Just the other day you may have read about the questionable police conduct during the immigration marches. Based on Joe's testimony, I think we have yet another tale of inappropriate, demeaning and unnecessarily aggressive police behavior.

Lastly, for those of you that know Joe, he is the nicest sweetest man and he does not deserve this kind of behavior. His dog Ruby is also sweet. I hope the community will support him if he needs our help.

Here is Joe's story:

Unfortunately, I was a victim of the two Hispanic guys yesterday (4-25). I was returning home from a dog walk around 4:30 pm with my bull terrier Ruby when they confronted me on the street at 6th and Main and tried to take Ruby away from me.

A police car stopped and the men told the police I took Ruby from their car. The police believed the men! One cop asked me how old Ruby is. I told him 9 years old. He told me that Ruby is two years old. "That is not your dog," one cop told me. "You have to return their dog."

I was pushed against the parking lot fence and handcuffed. Then I was placed in a police car while Ruby remained with the two men.The officers were abusive. They asked me if I was under the influence of medication and if I wanted a white dog just like one I had when I was little. I finally convinced them (after much begging) to take me to the San Fernando Building to establish the fact that Ruby is mine. Another cop car arrived and stayed with the men and my dog. One cop said "coo coo" the whole two block trip home. They also referred to the cardboard box they thought I lived in.
Things changed when I reached home. The building security guard, neighbors, the management crew, business owners (including Nancy-Jean) and Tom Gilmore and Trish Keefer all vouched for me and Ruby. The other cops brought the two men and Ruby to the building and everyone identified her. A third cop car later arrived. The handcuffs were finally removed and Ruby was returned to me
Despite all of that, though, I still had to take the two cops to my unit to show them proof that I live with a dog. Then later they returned to take pictures of Ruby and me together. I have filed a complaint against the two cops and I am going to meet with them and the head of Central Division on Monday afternoon. I was abused by those two cops and I will do my best to make them accountable for their bad behavior....and the two men? They were turned loose and could still possibly be around the area. Other dog walkers should wisely take Nancy-Jean's warning to heart.

1 comment:

audra said...

yo, check out the time you posted that. did that really happen or were you under the influence?