Sunday, June 20, 2010

Police in Gainesville, Florida Release Dog on 10-Year-Old Boy; Yeah - He's Black

Last week, police in Gainesville, Florida released a dog on Bryce Bates, a 10-year-old black child. According to an article in the Gainesville Sun, police were responding to a call from a woman who reported a burglary in progress. Around the time that police arrived, young Bryce rode his bicycle to check the mail for his mother.

Bryce said that he witnessed a police car coming towards him at a very fast speed and that he jumped from his bike, fearing that the car would hit him. The officers, part of a K-9 unit, exited the car and released a dog to pursue Bryce, who was running home to his mom in fear. Bryce sustained several bites from the dog.

As officers began to investigate the incident, they discovered that the woman who reported the burglary apparently has a mental condition that causes her to hallucinate. What condition caused officers to believe that a child riding a bike on a summer day was a burglar?

Personal Tidbit
As an 11-year-old in Gainesville, cops pulled me aside as I walked to a playground in my neighborhood. They said that "someone" told them that I was trying to steal a car. I also ran from them -- after they started to leave. To this day, I still have never attempted to steal (nor have I ever stolen) a car.

The delusional neighbor who called the police said that several male and female "foreigners," possibly teens, had burglarized her home. Little Bryce is 10-years-old and weighs 85 pounds.


Angela said...

This is an absolute outrage! Will it ever end? Parents of black boys have been training their teenaged sons how to act around cops for years -- for fear that they will be profiled while driving or worse. Now our little boys can't ride their bikes in their own neighborhoods?!!

Josh Dowlut said...

What is your legal opinion on MD's wiretapping law applied to recording police (mis)conduct? There's a fairly prominent case involving a Harford motorcyclist that has gained the attention of both the ACLU and Cato. I can understand a cop getting angry enough to want retribution, but the fact that someone who went to law school and passed the bar was convinced to file charges on this absolutely floors me. Applying the law as they would like would outlaw all investigative journalism and most regular journalism.

Darren Lenard Hutchinson said...

Angela: Very scary, indeed.
Josh: I heard about this a couple of weeks ago. I think it is atrocious. Cops are among the most important state actors. Besides, if they can observe us doing things in public or leaving personal items in the public domain, the ordinary rules about warrants disappear. Yet, if cops are conducting state work in public, then they deserve privacy? Naw.

Hippi Chicki Niki said...

"What condition caused officers to believe that a child riding a bike on a summer day was a burglar?"

"Now our little boys can't ride their bikes in their own neighborhoods?!!"

That is all.

Hippi Chicki Niki said...

I'm sorry. That is not all. I cannot hold back the snark.

If he is Black and running he must be guilty! Law & Order taught us that.

Who cares about probable cause or even its bastard child reasonable suspicion(dreamed up in the seventies while the SC was apparently having contact highs that caused them to hallucinate about some bizarro version of the fourth amendment)?

Did I ever tell you how much I adore Thurgood Marshall & William Brennan Jr.? I would so have totally married one or both, had I lived at the proper time in history.

Darren Lenard Hutchinson said...

Marshall and Brennan are class acts. This is a terrible case.

Hippi Chicki Niki said...

It really is. It's so sad it hurts physically to think about it. That's why I resorted to humor. It is always my balm for the things that hurt. Is there an update on how little Bryce is doing?

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