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Black student gets $1 damages from each of 18 cops that falsely beat, tasered him

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posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:21 AM
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An 18-year-old black high school student in South Bend, Indiana, has been awarded a mere $18 in damages for being attacked, tasered and unlawfully arrested four years ago

They knocked on Franklin’s door at about 2:30am, and entered without asking permission or producing a warrant.

Franklin was sleeping at home when armed police stormed into his bedroom, dragged the teenager outside, handcuffed him and put in the back of a police car.

They soon understood that they had arrested the wrong person, but Franklin was still taken into custody

Franklin and his family tried to sue police and city officials, but it took them about four years to reach a verdict. The jury recently decided that the police officers had indeed breached the teenager’s constitutional rights.

the court ordered the defendants to pay a mere $1 each in damages - a total of $18.

The community is outraged over the decision, with the local pastor putting it clear and simple that the ruling means that “Your rights are worth a dollar.”

"...blacks in America, we have no rights. How can we fight for something when the system was not made for us in the first place?”

Source
Long story short - Police burst into this kid's home, go into his bedroom while he's sleeping, drag him outside where they beat and taser him, and then arrest him despite the fact that they knew he was the wrong person. After a 4-year legal ordeal, the court decides the police were in the wrong, and awards the kid just $18 in damages.




posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:26 AM
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a reply to: trollz


Direct insult by the power establishment. Its no accident they paid out a dollar each. Nor fun to hear the verdict read either, 18 times.

Like the Rodney King verdicts, each time the black community heard the officers getting pronounced "Not Guilty" all they heard was,

Not guilty, F___ N_____s, Not Guilty, F___ N_____s.



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:27 AM
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a reply to: trollz

I do think it stinks that things like this happen, but... It sounds like they could have used a better lawyer?


The Franklin family was initially seeking $1 million, but damages are usually paid according to evidence that is presented to court: medical bills, lost property, post-traumatic stress, required psychological treatment, etc. None of this was submitted by the family.

At one stage, the city attempted to settle the case, offering $15,000, the Indianapolis Star reported.



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:28 AM
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What is this all about, doesn't make sense so there must be more to the fable...courts don't send messages or waste their time awarding $1.

Cheers

a reply to: trollz



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:28 AM
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What is this all about, doesn't make sense so there must be more to the fable...courts don't send messages or waste their time awarding $1.

Cheers

a reply to: trollz



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:28 AM
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What is this all about, doesn't make sense so there must be more to the fable...courts don't send messages or waste their time awarding $1.

Cheers

a reply to: trollz



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:28 AM
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What is this all about, doesn't make sense so there must be more to the fable...courts don't send messages or waste their time awarding $1.

Cheers

a reply to: trollz



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:28 AM
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a reply to: trollz

"He was probably resisting and deserved it. He's lucky he got awarded any damages at all."

"There is no police brutality problem in this country."

"I don't make the laws, I just enforce them [& break them with impunity]"




posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:31 AM
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Although they had the wrong person, I would love to hear the "other" side of the story. I have a hard time believing that 18 cops just decided to stomp this kid for no reason whatsoever. Not trying to deflect blame here, but even if you are the wrong person, you still need to follow commands until it is sorted out.
edit on 1-9-2016 by iTruthSeeker because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:31 AM
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Well, let's see...

$18 minus lawyer fees......$9 bucks!




posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:47 AM
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That's messed up big time, they should have paid way, way more than that.

Some cops need to rearrange their priorities and get the wright person(s).



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 11:54 AM
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Sounds like more politically-motivated hate bait to keep the pot boiling.
A verdict only the US Justice Department might come up with.
Not enough riots in the US to keep certain people happy.
edit on 1-9-2016 by Asktheanimals because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:01 PM
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I didn't read the article, but my guess would be the family didn't have a lawyer. The system can give the finger to the family but it would be hard pressed giving a verdict like that to a professional. These kinds of verdicts are commonly handed out to folks who try and represent themselves in court.



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:04 PM
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So they could have settled for $15k, which I think is a reasonable payout, and instead got $18? Ouch.

Did the jury decide the payout amount, or the judge?



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:18 PM
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Happens to all colours , no need for race hate .

We all get screwed by the law !



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:18 PM
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Here is the case in case anyone is interested.

News orgs don't like to link to actual case material when they write their articles. Seems like a pretty easy thing to do.



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:20 PM
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And asking for a million , turning down 15k,
Karma



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:39 PM
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WaPo has a bit more information in their article here:


Although the jury found constitutional violations, there was no evidence presented in court that supported the amount of damages that the Franklins were seeking. He said the Franklins asked for more than $1 million in damages.

In civil rights lawsuits, damages are usually measured by medical bills, lost wages, property damage, post-traumatic stress, psychological treatment, impairment and others, Agostino said. But in this case, no such evidence was presented, so the jury awarded the plaintiffs the default amount of $1 for unlawful entry and $1 for unlawful seizure.

“You can say that they experienced a deprivation of their constitutional rights,” Agostino said.

“But other than the deprivation of constitutional rights, the jury did not find other damages that go along with that,” he said. “They did exactly what they were instructed to do. They applied the law and determined the facts.”


The $1 each was a nominal fee. The problem it seems is that having your most fundamental rights egregiously violated isn't a damage you can be compensated for apparently. What he could have done is sought psychiatric treatment and claimed that the incident left him traumatized though let's all be honest with one another here — does anyone feel that should be necessary? There's comments in that article from a George Washington University professor who said that even without that sort of evidence:


“I would’ve expected most juries to have awarded several thousand dollars,” Saltzburg said. “It doesn’t seem adequate for an illegal entry into a home and for excessive force. It’s so low. You can’t go any lower. $18 says, ‘We don’t really think much of these rights that were violated.’ It’s an unusually low figure.”


The officers got off with a reprimand and "retraining" on the 4th Amendment. If that's not enough to turn your stomach, these thugs apparently went right back to it:


The same three officers involved in the Franklin lawsuit were named in a 2013 case filed by Jonathan Ferguson, a 7-Eleven store clerk with a learning disability. According to a federal complaint, the officers slashed Ferguson’s tire, and two of them challenged him to eat a teaspoon of cinnamon in exchange for $30 and a dinner coupon at a local Applebee’s. Ferguson did, and he vomited for several hours.

The officers took a video of the “cinnamon challenge,” as it had become locally known, and posted it on YouTube, according to the complaint. The parties have reached a settlement in that lawsuit.


and from NY Daily News:


Officer Knepper was the target of yet another civil rights lawsuit filed last year by Tom Stevens,who was hospitalized with a serious head injury following a violent arrest when cops say he was driving without headlights and failed to pull over, according to the South Bend Tribune.


How are these assholes still in uniform after the first incident?



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:49 PM
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What does his skin color have to do with the story? If it were a white guy, would the story have made a point to mention in it the headline?



posted on Sep, 1 2016 @ 12:56 PM
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originally posted by: Zarniwoop
Here is the case in case anyone is interested.

News orgs don't like to link to actual case material when they write their articles. Seems like a pretty easy thing to do.


Just an FYI — that document is not directly relevant to the topic at hand. That's the judge's opinion and orders from about a year ago regrding a motion for summary judgement filed by the defendants. From the concluding paragraph:


For the reasons set forth above, the Court GRANTS IN PART and DENIES IN PART the Motion for Summary Judgment [ECF No. 36] filed by Defendants Eric Mentz, Michael Stuk, and Aaron Knepper, and DENIES the Plaintiffs' Motion to Strike Paragraph [ECF No. 39]. Further, the Plaintiff's claim for Invasion of Privacy is DISMISSED. Still pending are the Plaintiffs' claims for unlawful entry and seizure under the Fourth Amendment and claims for false arrest, false imprisonment, and battery under state law.


It doesn't seem as though the Franklin family had a particularly good attorney though.



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