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Hullabaloo


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

 
Brain damage or death. Your choice.

by digby

I wrote about this Missouri taser incident at the time but I came across this Fox News update today while I was looking for something else. It would be darkly funny if it weren't so tragic:

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — An Independence teenager injured after being hit with a police taser is out of a coma, but is having trouble remembering a few things. We’re now getting a better picture of what may have happened before the officer reacted.

After the incident that sent Bryce Masters to the hospital in critical condition, police applied for search warrants for his car and phone.

Court documents describe the officers’ account of some of the things that happened during the traffic stop. The 17-year-old was in a medically induced coma over the weekend because doctors say his heart stopped after being tased.

An attorney representing the Masters’ family says the teenager has an infection, but is improving. He does say that Masters is suffering from some memory loss.

Investigators say Masters wouldn’t cooperate with the officer, and the officer used his taser. Police say they found drug paraphernalia in Masters’ car.

In court documents, police officer Tim Runnels states he smelled the odor of marijuana coming from inside Masters’ car when the teen rolled down the window, but would not roll it all the way down telling the officer, “why? I can hear you.”

Officer Runnels states he told him to get out of the car several times with Masters replying, “why, am I under arrest?”

According to court documents, Masters braced himself in the car so the officer could not get him out and was tased inside the car. Masters ended up on the ground, handcuffed.

Officer Runnels states Masters did not comply with his command to move to the side of the road, so he grabbed Masters from behind and carried him to the side of the road where, according to an affidavit, Masters began to suffer from some sort of medical emergency. What the affidavit does not say is if Officer Runnels provided medical aid to Masters before the ambulance arrived.

That is something the Federal Bureau of Investigation is looking into during its investigation, to see if Masters’ civil rights were violated.

The Masters’ family also asked the Justice Department to get involved. Documents also state that Masters was videotaping the incident on his cell phone. That phone is in the custody of the Independence Police Department.

"Some sort of medical emergency?" Actually the kid's heart stopped beating, he sustained brain damage and is in rehab. A little infection and "some memory loss" is the least of it.

But even more important is this notion implicit in that report that the police contend that he somehow deserved to be put into a coma because he refused to cooperate. That's truly outrageous.

Apparently, white teens in Missouri who fail to properly deal with authorities deserve to get brain damage. Black teens deserve to get shot dead on the spot. Either way, the lesson is that your civil rights end the minute you come in contact with a police officer. Which is just plain weird.

The story of his tasering is here, with witness accounts that tell a very different story than the ones the cops are telling.

“He pulled him out of the car, handcuffed him then drug him around the car then let him fall and it looked like he hit his face on the concrete, you could see blood coming out of his mouth and the cop put his foot on his back and moved it back and forth like he was putting a cigarette out and asked him ‘are you ready to get up now?’ You could tell the kid was going into convulsions. He turned him over and his head was dangling like this and he had blood coming out,” said Baker.

He almost tortured that kid to death.

.