Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Cops Get Away With Murder & Government Pays Off Victims Family

Tommy Staples, Jr. was murdered by police officers Barron Townsend and Steven Kopp in June of 2008. Officers struck Tommy Staples with their car then left the car to shoot Tommy to death then planted a gun on his body.

The family of Tommy Staples was awarded $2.5 million in a lawsuit, but the murders have yet to face charges or be held accountable for their crimes. This is the perfect example of the nature of the state. You can invent titles that justify your actions even if they are murder.

Why is it that so many see these figures of authority as above morality? Why are they not held accountable for their actions? These invented offices of authority somehow legalize behavior we would otherwise find absolutely unacceptable.

The family of Tommy Staples, Jr., shot to death by Detroit police officers Barron Townsend and Steven Kopp in June, 2008, has won a settlement of $2.5 million in their wrongful death lawsuit. The settlement in the federal case, heard in front of U.S. District Judge Arthur Tarnow, was recently approved by the city council.

“This is another example of how the Detroit Police Department fails to investigate cases involving the use of excessive force, to reconcile inconsistent evidence and scrutinize officers,” family attorney David Robinson said. “No discipline has been brought against these officers for Tommie Staples' death. It is inexcusable that the department is still non-compliant after seven years of federal oversight.”

Atty. Robinson said Mr. Staples was shot six to seven times by the officers, including once in the top of the head as he lay on the ground, after the officers first struck him with their car.

Since 2004, the city has settled at least four previous lawsuits, one involving the death of Stephen Crawford, which cite either Mr. Townsend or Mr. Kopp. According to the city's court filings in the Staples case, no discipline resulted from those incidents either.

Mr. Staples' companion of 30 years, Jacquelyn Porter, said in a 2008 Michigan Citizen story that the couple mentored and advocated for youth in their community, including protecting them from police harassment. Neighborhood youths told the Citizen at the time that officers Townsend and Kopp had been among those harassing them.

The couple had three children and two grandchildren. Several protests and candlelight vigils were held after Mr. Staples' death.

Please read the full story here: Detroit family wins $2.5 million in police lawsuit

1 comment:

  1. It's good to bring attention to situations where justice is not being served. It's pretty petty to use it as justification for one's own views.

    Plenty officers are nice guys. I guess you just have to get to know some besides the ones pulling you over for speeding. Some lay down their lives protecting others. That doesn't give any of them the right to kill people, but it does justify the existence of police in general.

    So I'm curious: when a civilian kills another civilian, is that a case for gun control? I mean, isolated incidents are apparently the rule... or does this logic only work when it's not a private citizen?

    If the only people killing others in Detroit were police officers, it'd be the safest city in the country.


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