By Steve Pomper
In the midst of what some think is a debate about defunding police, the most radical anti-law enforcement activists are instead creating ways to put cops in prison.
All across this great nation cops are trying not to get blown to bits while trying to serve the public in leftist ideological minefields. I recently wrote about Blackwell, Oklahoma police Lt. John Mitchell and his long-awaited extraction from the clenches of an ideologically driven district attorney.
The DA first charged Lt. Mitchell with murder, which a judge lucidly dismissed but oddly let a manslaughter charge remain. Neither charge applied because the officer was literally doing his job. In that case, stopping an active shooter’s rampage. The judge recently sustained a motion to quash based on sound evidence presented by Mitchell’s attorney Gary James. Evidence that existed from the very beginning, making charges ridiculous.
So welcome to another round of ridiculous. In Tacoma, Washington, as I wrote about in Lifezette, back in May, the reptilian anti-cop Washington State Attorney General, Bob Ferguson, has “charged Tacoma police officers with murder and manslaughter for what appears to be doing their jobs.” Sound familiar?
I also wrote, “No matter what the suspect does, if it ends badly, it is always and every time the officer’s fault.” Pierce County Sheriff Ed Troyer expressed his sentiments about the anti-police, woke insanity in this apt tweet.
A video of a portion of the encounter shows the officers attempting to arrest Manuel Ellis. Though Ellis is combative, resisting the officers, the woman recording yelled at the cops, “Stop! Why don’t you just arrest him?” Wow! What a great idea. Maybe the cops trying to arrest him should have thought of that. Maybe that woman could have yelled the incantation that would have made him magically comply.
Cops, who’ve been to police academies and have experience on the streets watch the video and say, “And…?” That’s what an arrest of a resisting, reportedly meth-influenced suspect looks like. Sorry, folks, but that’s just how it is.
The officers are clearly exhausted from the incident that began well before the woman began recording. Ellis, M.E. reports later, indicated he was pumped up by “methamphetamine intoxication.”
Ellis reportedly picked up one officer and slammed him to the ground. The Pierce County Sheriff’s Department said Ellis “never tried to run, he engaged with the officers and started a fight.” The M.E.’s report and Ellis’ behavior bring to a cop’s mind the possibility of excited delirium (ED). A condition that causes out-of-control behavior and increased strength.
AG Bob Ferguson is an anti-police, left-wing zealot. He’s going after officers whom Ellis attacked after pounding on their patrol car. After being handcuffed, Ellis became unresponsive. This is not unusual for someone who’s high on meth and possibly experiencing an episode of ED.
Critics accuse the officers of having used a “chokehold,” which the officers’ attorneys deny. It appears from the reporting, it’s more likely an officer may have used a “sleeper” or “carotid artery” hold, which restricts blood flow and causes unconsciousness. It doesn’t restrict airflow, which can cause death. It appears the activist AG wants to reprise the Floyd incident, so he can bask in its rekindled glow.
Patrick Malone, a leftist Seattle Times reporter (I know, redundant), covered the story. He betrays his bias (the article was not designated opinion) when he comments on “a decades-overdue conversation about Tacoma police’s treatment of Black [sic] Tacoma residents….” He continues, “The Ellis family and their supporters weren’t going to sit by quietly.” Well, they’re sure being quiet about their kin’s intoxicated, violent, and illegal behavior.
Tacoma government also showed its bias by abandoning the officers who were risking their lives to protect them. The city even canceled a contract with a religious group, raising money for the charged officers.
The social-media vitriol had gotten so bad, a school security guard who publicly supports the officers had to “seek a temporary restraining order against Ellis’ sister and a key eyewitness in the case.” A judge dismissed the order, laughably, citing free speech and arguing other people had said worse online.
Some are questioning whether the security guard, reportedly married to a Pierce County Sheriff’s Deputy, should be employed at the school. What? Because she supports the police? Standard fare for the Left, these days. Wait… what about free speech?
Ellis’s pregnant sister later claimed someone had deflated her car tires and damaged the brakes (why did Jussie Smollett just pop into my mind?). She also said her landlord chased away someone prowling near the property at night, which she apparently associated with her brother’s in-custody death.
Malone writes, “Supporters of law enforcement say they feel betrayed by a legal system that historically accepted officers’ explanations for use of deadly force, but which now threatens to lock up the three Tacoma officers for life.”
No. It was a system that historically accepted evidence of the officers’ justified uses of force. Just because a suspect dies in police custody, following a use of force, does not make that force deadly. The circumstances point to a common result of methamphetamine intoxication and possible ED.
Such a slap in the face to Tacoma officers (all cops), out of 353 sworn police officers, on the day AG Ferguson announced the charges, 105 officers took the day off. Reportedly, that’s a third more than usual for that day of the week.
As usual, and as with George Floyd, the radical anti-police factions are attempting to sanctify Ellis, who started this entire tragic incident.
Shamefully, the officers spent one night incarcerated. But thanks to Integrity Construction Group owner Josh Harris, he posted their $300,000 bail to have them released. Harris told KOMO News “the charges were part of an ‘anti-cop agenda’ and a ‘political witch hunt….” He said he just needed to “get off the couch…” and push back against the anti-cop onslaught.
For her part, Ellis’ sister feels accomplished because they got the TPD chaplain, Harris’s brother, Ben, fired because he supports the cops (kind of an occupational hazard for a police chaplain, right?).
The officers have pleaded not guilty and are on paid administrative leave, which is standard procedure. The judge in the Oklahoma case, in Kay County, slapped down that errant DA in grand fashion. Let’s hope the same thing happens to the Pierce County DA in this case.