18 Feb 2015

Man sues after police turn off dashcam during arrest

 A man has filed a lawsuit against the city's police department after a dash cam video showing his arrest was turned off by an officer.
The man arrested, Cortez Bufford, is claiming excessive force.
St. Louis police say they pulled over Bufford and a passenger on April 10, 2014, after his car matched a description to a shots fired call.
Police say they tried to get him out of the car, but he did not comply.
You can hear a man screaming and see a struggle ensue in the police dash cam video. A few officers kick Bufford as he continues to fight back, then an officer uses a taser on him.
They are on the ground for nearly two minutes when you hear an officer say, "we are red right now," which means the camera is on, and then the camera shuts off.
"Hold up, everybody hold up, we are red right now, so if you guys are worried about the cameras just wait," the unidentified officer said.
Bufford's attorney said there was no reason for the police to pull over his client, and no reason for officers to kick him.
"You watch the foot go back and the foot go forward, now I think you can go to the police academy for a long time before they say the right move is to kick they guy," said Bevis Schock.
During the struggle police found a 9mm pistol, 5 live rounds, and marijuana on Bufford.
A city representative said the officer that turned off the camera violated department policy and has been disciplined.
Bufford was charged with resisting arrest, along with drug and gun possession, but those charges were later dropped.
Brian Millikan, attorney for the St. Louis Police Officers Association, represented four officers during the internal investigation.
"The officers followed the use of force continuum," Millikan said. "They took the suspect into custody with the minimal force that was necessary that evening."
Police say it was inconclusive if Bufford and the passenger were involved in the original shots fired call.
The St. Louis Metropolitan Police department did not have a comment, but forwarded inquiries to the mayor's office.
The St. Louis Circuit Attorney's office of Jennifer Joyce says they don't normally discuss why a case has been dismissed because once it is, it becomes a closed record.
The office, however, released the following statement:
"Just as in every case, the Circuit Attorney's Office continued an investigation into the incident regarding Cortez Bufford after charges were filed. As standard procedure, prosecutors requested a copy of the police dash-cam video, which was not available at the time of the initial warrant application.
"Several prosecutors reviewed the video and were concerned to see the intentional deactivation of the dash-cam video. The office immediately reported this concern to the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department's Internal Affairs Division and to the sergeant of the officer involved.

3 comments:

  1. Obstruction of Justice.
    Destruction of Evidence.
    Destruction of PUBLIC PROPERTY
    Why are these Criminals not in JAIL?

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  2. I am going to say what everyone already thinks; when a cop intentionally turns off his camera it is a sign of a guilty mind. The law should be made to read that whenever a cop does this any action taken should be considered illegal, including ANY use of force that cop is engaged in. If he/she kills someone it is therefore automatically considered murder as the only unbiased witness present has been silenced.

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  3. If you have a home security system and the tape "magically" turns off at a crucial time when your stuff is stolen, you will be called a liar as your evidence was obviously tampered with.

    If you record a conversation for use in a trial and it just stops and restarts, the entire thing will be called into question, as it's obviously been tampered with.

    But if a cop turns off his camera, perfectly normal business practice!!!

    Pathetic liars...never trust nor deal with them.

    ReplyDelete