In recent years cases have been widely publicized coming from Pocatello, of citizens getting hefty charges filed against them for erroneous legal grounds. The problem with this is that despite that many of these cases get thrown out of court, or a citizen takes a plea deal in order to avoid legal costs, despite that the probability of them prevailing in court are high, is that these erroneous citations or criminal charges cost the average citizen missed days at work due to either court appearances or jail time, and legal fees ranging from $500 to $10,000 for a lawyer, with some legal fees going as high as hundreds of thousands of dollars.
I see a major conflict of interest for the public in the way police officers are trained in the law. For example, police officers only get 6 months of training as a standard, which is just police academy. Police officers are not required to take any classes or have any degrees in criminal justice or law. Where as an attorney requires roughly 8 years of school, which includes graduate and post graduate education as well as law school. Yet lawyers have less legal authority than a police officer does, meaning that an attorney can not assess a citizen’s conduct, and determine that a citizen must be arrested and put behind bars, only to have to go through a difficult court scenario in which they can either be found guilty or innocent and with what remains from the court proceedings, a citizen may lose their career, their family, and everything that they have ever worked for. However a police officer, with absolutely no legal training, can make assumptions about a citizens conduct, arrest him, put him in jail, and effectively ruin his/her life based on little to know accuracy in the charges filed.
This is what law enforcement agencies require for recruits. Ref: http://study.com/articles/Police_Officer_Educational_Requirements_for_Police_Officers.html
|Required Education||High school diploma or equivalent; some agencies require college-level training or a degree|
|Training Requirements||Police academy|
It has also been determined due to a supreme court case, that police agencies can discriminate against applicants based on having a high IQ.
There are hundreds of thousands of people in the USA who despite not having committed a real crime, get charged with “disorderly conduct” or “resisting an officer”, just because they question the validity of the officer’s conduct in questioning them. Such was the case recently with Sean Johnson of Pocatello Idaho, despite that the officer cited a fake crime “public voyeurism” and despite that an officer needs to articulate a valid crime that is being investigated in order to issue commands to a citizen, and despite that the citizen followed the officers commands and gave him his identity, the officer still arrested him and charged him with resisting and obstructing. Two local area lawyers gave their commentary on this and both agree that the officer had no right to even give this citizens commands or demand identification; Reference; and second Reference;
When I made a video of a phone call that I placed with the Pocatello police department, I left my phone number publicly available and I have received 8 contacts from people in Pocatello Idaho who want to work on a situation where we can hold the Pocatello police accountable for misconduct and harassment.
I put together an email for one of the people who is serious about filing a lawsuit against the Pocatello Police department, which gives some information on how I believe the next step should be taken. I want to re-assert that I am not a lawyer, however I have just as much legal training as the average police officer, and from what I can tell I probably have a much higher IQ than most police officers. That being said, take this information with a grain of salt.
Dear Mr. ________
This is the references that I told you that I would send you during our phone call today.Business card that I hand politely to police to invoke my 4th and 5th Amendment Rights.I am currently working on a lawsuit, and I have been sourcing legal documents and templates for getting started. If you ever decide that you want o do this, you have to be quick, because there is a short period after you are arrested to file.References:See this link for the statue of limitations for filing suit against a city or municipality.This is how to write a pro se motion;This is a pretty good collection of blank legal templates for filing motions;Here is some case law about filming police;It is also prudent to hand this memo from Department of Homeland Security on a constitutional rights to film the exterior of Federal buildings.http://www.photoattorney.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/Photographing-the-Exterior-of-Federal-Buildings.pdfAnd for reference, you can see a lot of my protesting, and interactions with police here;andandLets stay in touch, I may be able to include you in a lawsuit. Or possibly guide you to resources if you ever decide to file one of your own.Much respect,Ryan Thompson
This is some more information on filing a lawsuit and some of the legal parameters on how to be effective in pursuing a lawsuit.
List of videos for legal education purposes, which are very credible and used by universities.
WikiHow.com has some great articles on how to file and pursue a lawsuit.
One example is;
A lawsuit against the city is a last resort action to stop this madness. But it may be our only recourse to get the police to do their job, and to get better training.
It is likely that if I do file a lawsuit or help someone else proceed with this action, that a monetary value would be set for the lawsuit. However the most important part of the lawsuit should be that the police be required by city ordnance to be better trained. Perhaps that all new recruits get at least a 2 year degree in criminal justice, and that current officers have a determined amount of time in order to get the same education.