In my latest op-ed, “NYPD Officers Beat The Crowds…And The Charges,” I criticized the failure of the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office to pursue criminal charges against NYPD Deputy Inspectors Anthony Bologna and Johnny Cardonna for their behavior during Occupy Wall Street protests.
But unwillingness to hold police to the same legal standards as private citizens is, of course, not just an American problem. As Paul Jay of The Real News Network reports, a similar pattern emerged after evidence of police abuse surfaced following the 2010 G20 Summit in Toronto. In this report from July 2012, Jay rightly asserts that department discipline is not the same as being held legally accountable for abuse of authority. Jay concludes:
– Forcibly denying democratic rights is a crime. Those responsible should be charged.
– The right of journalists to report on police actions must be enshrined in police policy and guidelines. It’s simple: journalists should stay out of the way, and if they do, they cannot be ordered to leave the scene.
– Assault is a crime. It should be treated as such.
I highly recommend this report to C4SS readers.