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Detroit Cops Wrongfully Force Kid To Endure 40 Days In The Hole

Written by Devtome contributor Bomac

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On a mid December day, Dominique Rondeau, a teenager in Detroit, Michigan, USA, was involved in a good-natured, time honored, friendly snowball fight with a number of his friends. Little did he realize he would spend 6 weeks in jail and lose some of his innocence and most of his faith in police as a direct result of participating in the pastime of good, clean fun, but that is exactly what happened.1)

Shades Of The IDF?

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In the Israeli occupied Palestinian territories, soldiers from the Israeli Defense Force use middle of the night raids to come for kids who they say were spotted throwing rocks, usually in the direction of Israeli soldiers or tanks & armored vehicles.2) They barge into the kid's room, shine bright lights in her face, man handle her, put a bag over her head, often punching her as they drive to police station, where the kid faces further abuse and misfortune. They often are sent to terms of solitary confinement, which is considered a form of torture by many human rights groups.

In Detroit, they didn't barge in to arrest in the middle of the night & put a bag over his head, but they most certainly did barge in. They accused him of cracking a cop car windshield with one of his snowballs, some hours it was allegedly broken.

They knocked on his door. When the teen opened it, they simply walked in, put their hands on him, turned him around and handcuffed him. As it turns out, they didn't even have a warrant, and despite what they said in their police reports, they didn't have proof, or even probable cause that he had committed the crime of destroying police property.

Say No To Cops

In a previous Devtome contribution, I speak about the importance of saying no to police. Now more than ever, we need to, en masse, stand up for our rights when dealing with police. When they knock at your door, do not open it.

Talk to them through the door or a window. Do not give them any information. Tell them you do not speak to law enforcement officers without an attorney. Never allow them in without a warrant. If Rondeau had followed that advice, he may have still been arrested, if not then, later, but on the other hand, he may have been able to avoid all kinds of unpleasantness that comes with 40 days in the hole, missing 6 weeks of school, missing Christmas & New Years with the family.

The cops said that video surveillance proved that they had their man, er, uh, kid. After 40 days, rotting in juvenile detention, Rondeau finally got his day in court. The video surveillance was in no way clear enough to ascertain the identity of anybody throwing snowballs. If they had been forced to get a warrant, there is a chance the judge would have asked to see the video “evidence”, and simply refused to issue it.

It Sucks To Be Poor

Just as in the case of Sandra Bland, who ended up dying in jail, days after being arrested for not kissing cop ass, it sucks to not have the money to post bond. Bland, would probably be alive today if she could have posted $5,000, bond. Rondeau could have spent no more than one day in the hole if his family could have posted $2,000 bond.

People who have money to be able to post bond are able to avoid a lot of pain, suffering, humiliation and abuse. Part of the reason for this is, of course, the fact that they are able to get out from behind bars while they await their day in court. Then they also are more likely able to afford an attorney who can defend them, and make trouble for the cops, so to speak, in the legal realm.

Another reason is that people with money can be viewed as threats to the cops if they misbehave. The cops realize there is a greater chance of facing legal repercussions for violating their rights. However, even if you don't have money, you can do yourself a favor, more times than not, by knowing your rights and letting the cops know that you know your right.

They will understand that a person who demonstrates that she knows her rights at the time of encounter with the officer(s), is more likely to pursue legal redress for violating her rights. That is why the public should file reports as well as sue cops and police forces and towns and cities and states when they are mistreated.

I'm happy to report Rondeau found a lawyer who is suing for damages.

Law Enforcement | Law

2) Israeli apologist like to say that all the kids who are arrested were seen throwing rocks at cars on highways where they could potentially kill people. The reality is very few arrests are from such activity, and those that are, should be arrested as soon as possible and not blindfolded and not punched and not threatened and not have their parents unable to know where they are or even if they are alive. There is no excuse for the way the IDF & the rest of the Israeli government treats Palestinian kids. Of course, all their mistreatment does is foment more hatred for Israel and more desire to get back at them. It's like the US drone bombing wedding parties in Pakistan, thinking that is going to somehow make terrorism go away, as opposed to what it is really doing, which is like putting out fire with gasoline. Incidentally, Israeli settlers love to throw rocks at Palestinians. They never get arrested, but when a Palestinian picks up a rock that a settler threw at them, and tosses it back, well, that's a different story. It's the end of the world. It calls for a 3 AM raid and human rights violations.

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