Tuesday, March 3, 2020

This Just In: Cops Say Cops Can Police Their Own Just Fine, Thankyouverymuch

Further update: Nobody else in attendance agrees. Nobody...

HB1217, "requiring police officers to report misconduct", before the NH House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee", 3/3/2020. Shouldn't we, the taxpayers -- who employ them -- be entitled to expect them to react at least as officiously as they do to our "transgressions", to those of their public-sector brethren? Should cops be entitled to get a pass -- from other cops, conveniently, remember -- for "wink, wink" transgressions? The Thin Blue Line is under direct attack. What ever will the law enforcement response be? Let's find out, shall we...?

Testimony from the state rep prime sponsor (one of mine, in fact) in favor; a cop/union rep opposed; another state rep (and also a cop) in favor; and the ACLU-NH in favor. Signing in on the blue sheet: 4 in favor, 2 opposed (both cops, one of whom gave the testimony, so double-dipping, just like their retirement plan...). (Oh, and here's where you can read all about the various historical abuses of Weare PD -- including the undisciplined [and undisciplined] murder of the set up and alleged drug dealer Alex Cora DeJesus, as referenced by Rep. Burt.)

One might be excused, therefore, for anticipating this will be a relatively noncontroversial bill, right? We'll see. The cops expect -- and far too often receive -- special consideration behind the scenes in these "hallowed halls". And even (particularly?) then, there's the Senate...

Why can the taxpayers not expect that their employees conduct the job for which they're hired equally when it comes to their friends? Why can't we expect them to be as accountable as, as we heard in testimony, judges and prosecutors and defense attorneys and nurses and...? Is that really so radical a concept in a free society committed to equal justice under the law...?

During the preceding bill, the Chair informed us that this committee is part of a House "pilot program" committing all hearings and executive sessions to audio recordings. No word on whether those recordings will be made available to the public, at least during the "pilot", so still good that we have video, eh...?

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