Police Beating Called Appropriate—
By Alex Lloyd Gross
The Grand Jury report was just released that exonorated the Philadelphia Police Officers that were involved in the arrest and beating of three suspects after a brief chase in North Philadelphia.
The incident showed officers beating the suspects as they tried to take them into custody. For 67 seconds, officers could be watched hitting, kicking and prodding the suspects after a brief chase. The suspects were accused of attempted murder.
In June of this year, all three suspects, Dwayne Dyches. Brian Hall and Pete Hopkins were acquitted of all charges.
In May of 2008, the incident was captured on tape by the local Fox News helicopter. Taking over as Police Commissioner was Charles Ramsey, who just took over the reins of the Philadelphia Police Dept. shortly before this incident. After viewing the tape, ramsey quickly fired four officers, demoted one Sergeant. Before the dust had settled several others had been suspeded or had letters placed in their files.
The Grand Jury report stated that “The video does not in fact speak for itself”. There was no context, the Grand Jury said. Police alleged that the trio had shot someone and the vehicle did not pull as soon as police signaled the vehicle.
The local Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 5 stated that they were in the process of trying to get the officers reinstated. They claim the Grand Jury spoke loud and clear, calling the actions justified.
The local community reaction has been split. Some people support the police, and others, including the Rev. Al Sharpton are calling for a Federal Grand Jury to take a look at the incident. Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey said in a statement that “I have over 40 years of experience and I kinda know what I’m looking at. In my opinon, those actions were not justified, Ramsey said.
The fired officers was newly minted from the Police Academy and were on probation,. which meant the city could terminate them at will. Getting them reinstated may prove to be an uphill battle.