Officer who was fired after hitting suspect with car gets new job

deathBOB

Senior member
Dec 2, 2007
566
228
116
https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.aj...cer-was-fired/JQt1msR9V6kkKZKgQjyr3K/amp.html

The mother of a man who was hit by a police car said Monday morning that the Athens-Clarke County officer never should have driven into him, although her son said he should not have run.

"I am relieved that he was fired,” Tammy Brown-Patmon, mother of Timmy Patmon, told Channel 2 Action News. “Justice was served.”

That was before Officer Taylor Saulters was hired Monday afternoon by the neighboring Oglethorpe County Sheriff’s Office.

All problems with policing stem from a lack of accountability and consequences for officers.
 

sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
94,863
15,036
126
As long as the neighbour county pd is aware of the issue with the officer and are willing to take on the liability, not much else can be done.
 

interchange

Diamond Member
Oct 10, 1999
8,016
2,850
136
I read something about police accountability a while ago which lined up how problem officers often are able to simply go to another department. I don't really know the scope of this problem well, but clearly being able to hide serious conduct problems from future employers is a big deal, especially for this job.
 

Darwin333

Lifer
Dec 11, 2006
19,946
2,328
126
I read something about police accountability a while ago which lined up how problem officers often are able to simply go to another department. I don't really know the scope of this problem well, but clearly being able to hide serious conduct problems from future employers is a big deal, especially for this job.

This is extremely common. A lot of times, due to hugely powerful police unions making it extremely difficult to fire even the worst cops, bad cops are allowed to resign instead of being fired and more often than not they make a deal that when another department calls for a reference they are given whatever he wrote in his resignation letter.

Take William "Robocop" Melendez, he was indicted not once but twice as an officer in one department. The first time was from falsely arresting/accusing someone on drug charges among other things, something he was accused of a ton of times during his career, the felony charges were dismissed but he was actually found guilty on misdemeanor charges. He kept his job. Then a few years later he and 17 other officers were brought up on federal charges:

All 17 were indicted on one count of conspiracy against rights, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Eight officers were charged with additional civil rights violations. The indictment cited 21 instances of rogue conduct between April 2000 and December 2002. Zani was also indicted on two counts of deprivation of rights under color of law and use and carrying of firearm during crime of violence. Melendez was also indicted on two counts of deprivation of rights under color of law, possession of a stolen firearm and carrying of firearm during crime of violence. Watkins was also indicted on one count of possession of a stolen firearm. From April 29, 2000, to about June of this year, the indictment said the officers conspired with others to violate the constitutional rights of various people. The officers tried to identify people involved in drug trafficking and where they sold drugs by breaking into residences and conducting illegal searches for drugs. They also illegally detained people on the street, searched and questioned them, the indictment said.

If they found drugs, firearms or contraband during the illegal searches, they would decide which ones to arrest. Then they would falsify their police reports to justify the criminal charges and the initial searches and seizures, the indictment said. They sometimes kept some or all of the money, drugs or firearms they found during the searches, the indictment said. If they found too little contraband, the indictment said, they would plant drugs, guns or money, claiming they found them on or near the people chosen for the illegal arrest.

They also intimidated people they found inside the houses with threats of violence or illegal arrests, the indictment said. Sometimes, they used body cavity searches to demean the people they were trying to intimidate. In some cases, the officers would take money from the people they confronted in exchange for not arresting them, according to the indictment. Besides falsifying police reports, they also lied in court, the indictment said.

The jury found them not guilty, and I shit you not, the jury stated it was because it relied too much on the testimony of admitted drug users and prostitutes. Well no shit, those were the people they were targetting!

Yet he kept his job, at least for a while.

After being on paid suspension for years while the department tried to fire him and go through the union mandated arbitration BS, Detroit finally managed to get rid of him. This is why it is so common to let them resign, it cost them a shitton of money to actually fire this asshole and oh yeah, he got to keep his pension benefits too. On top of that there were a bunch of civil suits that Detroit had to pay for this asshole. Yet with all of that, and those are just the highlights, he was hired by another police department and then this happened:


He was actually convicted this time of felony assault and served 14 months of his jail sentence on that one but even then he had his police buddies backing him up bigtime at his parole hearing. The taxpayers were once again on the hook to the tune of $1.4 million dollars which is over half of the yearly personnel budget for the entire police force.

You can do all of that shit and until he was actually found guilty of a felony still just jump to another police force. I guarantee that if he wasn't found guilty he'd still be working as a cop today.
 

Darwin333

Lifer
Dec 11, 2006
19,946
2,328
126
As long as the neighbour county pd is aware of the issue with the officer and are willing to take on the liability, not much else can be done.


That's the thing though, they aren't taking on the liability. The taxpayers are.
 

The Merg

Golden Member
Feb 25, 2009
1,210
34
91
I don't think this case is as extreme as it seems. I've watched the video multiple times. The officer tries to pull in front of the subject and he runs around the back of the car at which time the officer pulls back out and tries to drive around the subject. This is where it gets a bit murky. You can see the officer turning the wheel back and forth as the subject comes back into view and gets hit at the front right of the car. While it looks like the officer is turning the wheel as if to turn into the subject, he was also driving a vehicle with a blown front tire, which will definitely affect control of the vehicle. The officer denies trying to intentionally strike the subject, but he was fired after the internal investigation. The line that gets me is the "Under the totality of the circumstances... actions were objectively unreasonable." This could mean that his attempt to drive with the flat tire that caused the incidental contact with the subject is something that other officers would have realized was wrong to do and thus he should have foreseen that it could have lead to the injury of the subject .

Also, with a small jurisdiction such as this, I doubt there is a union or even a union with any power. With that said, he was also a brand new officer and most likely in his probation period, for which you can normally be fired for any reason.

My thinking is that if he intentionally hit the subject, he absolutely needs to be charged.

- Merg
 

Darwin333

Lifer
Dec 11, 2006
19,946
2,328
126
Here is another one, Ronald Dupuis.

He was fired after he tased his partner... while she was driving a patrol car... because she refused to pull over so he could get a soda.

He was charged but of course was acquitted, his lawyer arguing that it was "horseplay" as tasing someone who is not only driving but driving a city-owned police car while both were on duty is wont to be. They tried to terminate him but during arbitration (gotta love those union rules) the arbitrator decided that he should be allowed to resign to save his career. I swear I am not making this shit up. He was also on paid vacation suspension while the lengthy arbitration process went on.

He then went on to get hired at another department and beat the ever-loving shit out of someone who was face down in a pile of snow, another viral video.

So even when they assault a fellow officer with a freaking taser while they are driving, endangering not only themselves but everyone on the road around them, are charged but still manage to get off as cops usually do they still face no real consequences. Is it any wonder that they think that they can get away with just about anything? It is because they CAN.

Could you imagine a regular joe tasing someone while they are driving and getting off by saying it was just horseplay? Or a regular joe that did that at work to a girl driving a company vehicle and being allowed to resign instead of getting fired to save his career? This crap is so absurd that I literally couldn't make it up if I tried.
 

Darwin333

Lifer
Dec 11, 2006
19,946
2,328
126
Well that is just bananna republic shit.

Police unions, which are incredibly powerful, will raise all holy hell at just the mention of civilian oversight and have/will even sue to prevent it from happening. A side note, I really don't like the phrase civilian oversight because cops are civilians too.
 

Pipeline 1010

Golden Member
Dec 2, 2005
1,918
742
136
It's time to require individual liability insurance to be a cop. If you are uninsurable, you are unemployable. It would clear this shit right up. Nothing more to be said really; the only reason not to support this is if you like police brutality.
 

Pipeline 1010

Golden Member
Dec 2, 2005
1,918
742
136
And something to keep in mind, I think, to temper our outrage at the laws imperfections.

Unpunished police brutality is not a result of the "laws imperfections". Maybe we can call it police "whoopsies" or "bloopers" and all have a laugh. You belittle people's dislike of unpunished police brutality. Why?
 

interchange

Diamond Member
Oct 10, 1999
8,016
2,850
136
And something to keep in mind, I think, to temper our outrage at the laws imperfections.

I certainly seem to have a different point of view than most people on this. I think it's a dumb fantasy that the laws are going to effectively define what behavior ought to be criminally punished; an even dumber fantasy that we can enforce those laws in a timely, cost-effective, and equitable way; and the dumbest fantasy of all that we can actually adequately surveil people for whether they are breaking the law in the first place (what use is making something illegal if you can't catch someone doing it?).

So I am never much for outrage at the law. I rarely imagine that the rule of law functions as actual protection against offense. I think the best way we can have a society whose laws are functioning well has more to do with our culture and respect for the intent of the law rather than its application. To use this example, we'd do much better at preventing police brutality if the culture among the police was high individual voluntary accountability, positive reward for conscientious service, labeling bad behaviors verbally, enhancing partnership with citizens, etc. and less of one around authority, hierarchy, us-vs-them mentality, etc. That cultural shift IMO would have a ton more impact than more actively punishing people who violate the law as police officers.
 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
72,382
6,065
126
I certainly seem to have a different point of view than most people on this. I think it's a dumb fantasy that the laws are going to effectively define what behavior ought to be criminally punished; an even dumber fantasy that we can enforce those laws in a timely, cost-effective, and equitable way; and the dumbest fantasy of all that we can actually adequately surveil people for whether they are breaking the law in the first place (what use is making something illegal if you can't catch someone doing it?).

So I am never much for outrage at the law. I rarely imagine that the rule of law functions as actual protection against offense. I think the best way we can have a society whose laws are functioning well has more to do with our culture and respect for the intent of the law rather than its application. To use this example, we'd do much better at preventing police brutality if the culture among the police was high individual voluntary accountability, positive reward for conscientious service, labeling bad behaviors verbally, enhancing partnership with citizens, etc. and less of one around authority, hierarchy, us-vs-them mentality, etc. That cultural shift IMO would have a ton more impact than more actively punishing people who violate the law as police officers.
Such conclusions might be less rare were people to think through the notion of where a single minded punishment oriented solution to the criminal activity, police or otherwise, inevitably leads. People should read Les Misérables.
 

Darwin333

Lifer
Dec 11, 2006
19,946
2,328
126
I certainly seem to have a different point of view than most people on this. I think it's a dumb fantasy that the laws are going to effectively define what behavior ought to be criminally punished; an even dumber fantasy that we can enforce those laws in a timely, cost-effective, and equitable way; and the dumbest fantasy of all that we can actually adequately surveil people for whether they are breaking the law in the first place (what use is making something illegal if you can't catch someone doing it?).

So I am never much for outrage at the law. I rarely imagine that the rule of law functions as actual protection against offense. I think the best way we can have a society whose laws are functioning well has more to do with our culture and respect for the intent of the law rather than its application. To use this example, we'd do much better at preventing police brutality if the culture among the police was high individual voluntary accountability, positive reward for conscientious service, labeling bad behaviors verbally, enhancing partnership with citizens, etc. and less of one around authority, hierarchy, us-vs-them mentality, etc. That cultural shift IMO would have a ton more impact than more actively punishing people who violate the law as police officers.

Why shouldn't we do that with all criminals, not just cops? Despite their opinion cops are just civilians too so what is good for them should be just as good for us, right?
 

The Merg

Golden Member
Feb 25, 2009
1,210
34
91
It's time to require individual liability insurance to be a cop. If you are uninsurable, you are unemployable. It would clear this shit right up. Nothing more to be said really; the only reason not to support this is if you like police brutality.

Interesting idea, but I don’t think it would work. People would sue officers left and right whether the officers were in the right or not. And with insurance companies, they will work out a settlement rather than go to trial due to the cost, but it would still be a hit on the officer. After 3 or 4 of these, how likely is the insurance company going to be willing to continue to insure the officer?

- Merg
 

Darwin333

Lifer
Dec 11, 2006
19,946
2,328
126
Interesting idea, but I don’t think it would work. People would sue officers left and right whether the officers were in the right or not. And with insurance companies, they will work out a settlement rather than go to trial due to the cost, but it would still be a hit on the officer. After 3 or 4 of these, how likely is the insurance company going to be willing to continue to insure the officer?

- Merg

So just more of the status quo?
 

interchange

Diamond Member
Oct 10, 1999
8,016
2,850
136
Why shouldn't we do that with all criminals, not just cops? Despite their opinion cops are just civilians too so what is good for them should be just as good for us, right?

Yes. I have argued that way many times here. There is no benefit to reducing bad behavior by stripping people of their humanity in addressing it.
 

The Merg

Golden Member
Feb 25, 2009
1,210
34
91
So just more of the status quo?

Not what I said, but why would any insurance company insure an officer when any and everyone could sue the officer for every little slight they feel wronged by when the officer either arrests them or uses force on them?

- Merg
 

Sunburn74

Diamond Member
Oct 5, 2009
5,027
2,595
136
This is extremely common. A lot of times, due to hugely powerful police unions making it extremely difficult to fire even the worst cops, bad cops are allowed to resign instead of being fired and more often than not they make a deal that when another department calls for a reference they are given whatever he wrote in his resignation letter.

Take William "Robocop" Melendez, he was indicted not once but twice as an officer in one department. The first time was from falsely arresting/accusing someone on drug charges among other things, something he was accused of a ton of times during his career, the felony charges were dismissed but he was actually found guilty on misdemeanor charges. He kept his job. Then a few years later he and 17 other officers were brought up on federal charges:



The jury found them not guilty, and I shit you not, the jury stated it was because it relied too much on the testimony of admitted drug users and prostitutes. Well no shit, those were the people they were targetting!

Yet he kept his job, at least for a while.

After being on paid suspension for years while the department tried to fire him and go through the union mandated arbitration BS, Detroit finally managed to get rid of him. This is why it is so common to let them resign, it cost them a shitton of money to actually fire this asshole and oh yeah, he got to keep his pension benefits too. On top of that there were a bunch of civil suits that Detroit had to pay for this asshole. Yet with all of that, and those are just the highlights, he was hired by another police department and then this happened:


He was actually convicted this time of felony assault and served 14 months of his jail sentence on that one but even then he had his police buddies backing him up bigtime at his parole hearing. The taxpayers were once again on the hook to the tune of $1.4 million dollars which is over half of the yearly personnel budget for the entire police force.

You can do all of that shit and until he was actually found guilty of a felony still just jump to another police force. I guarantee that if he wasn't found guilty he'd still be working as a cop today.
Zero freaking accountability. Honestly what policing needs is a board that can permanently strip someone of their ability to work.

Not what I said, but why would any insurance company insure an officer when any and everyone could sue the officer for every little slight they feel wronged by when the officer either arrests them or uses force on them?

- Merg
Why would insurance companies have doctors pay malpractice insurance when anyone can and does sue docs for any little baseless thing?

I think its fair to say that if cops were personally liable (ie their mandatory insurance policies were at stake and possibly more) they'd probably behave better, just like the fear of being sued forces doctors to actually over protect and be even less risk averse than probably necessary.
 

Darwin333

Lifer
Dec 11, 2006
19,946
2,328
126
Not what I said, but why would any insurance company insure an officer when any and everyone could sue the officer for every little slight they feel wronged by when the officer either arrests them or uses force on them?

- Merg

I hate to tell you my friend but that is the way of the world. I am in construction and we can, and are, sued for anything and everything. Hell that is the way our tort laws have been set up, anyone can sue anyone for whatever friggen reason they want. I could literally sue you because of the color of your eyes, yes a judge will throw it out but it doesn't change my ability to sue you.

I personally think we need a better way to weed out frivolous suits but until then I don't mind one bit if cops have to share in the same "suck" that I do. After all, they are just normal civilians, like me.