Last week we reported that several states have banned the video recording of police officers in public. As if this wasn’t enough, we now learn of an incident Texas where a police officer actually entered a person’s home without permission and then arrested the man because he took a picture of the officer as evidence of the illegal trespassing:
According to the lawsuit (PDF), Sgt. Justin Alderete of the Sealy, Texas, police department arrived at the home of Francisco Olvera in October, 2009, apparently responding to a noise complaint. Olvera had been playing music on his computer speakers while working outside on his patio.
The sergeant asked Olvera for identification. When Olvera went inside his home to grab his ID, Sgt. Alderete followed him inside. Believing the officer didn’t have a right to enter his home without permission, Olvera picked up his cellphone and took a photo of the officer. At that point, the lawsuit states, Alderete accused Olvera of “illegal photography” and arrested him.
Olvera was charged with “loud music” and “public intoxication” — the officer had seen a beer can on the kitchen table, the lawsuit asserts.
In January, Olvera was acquitted of all charges.
source: Raw Story
It is our opinion that police officers should be held to higher standards, and if necessary, prosecuted for violating the rights of ordinary citizens who did nothing wrong.
The officer entered the home illegally and should be held accountable under criminal law for this. He then arrested this man for not just taking a picture, but public intoxication in a private residence.
That makes absolutely no sense. Chances are, the officer knew that the charges would eventually be dropped, but he decided to play the superiority card and give this person a hard time.
He should be punished for this, not just by being placed on administrative leave, termination or civil penalties, but criminal penalties as well.
Living in Texas I can sayÂ all Texas lawmen I’ve run into are courteousÂ and professional.Â That isÂ as long as citizensÂ conduct themselves in like manner.Â However mouthyÂ assholes who defy authority and disturb their neighborsÂ are apt to get a good beating, Â which personnally I like to see.Â Â (Can I help kick his ass officer?Â This maggot has been irritating me for a long time)Â Â Â
I’ve broke the laws several times in my daysÂ and dealt with State Troopers, Texas Rangers, Game Wardens, local police, sherriffs deputies at one time or another and all haveÂ behavedÂ courteously and professionally.Â Â Â
‘Yes sir’, or’ no sir’ goes a long way in ensuring the impact of the infraction is minimized.
The asshole in SealyÂ got off easy which means he’ll feel invincible, get drunk again, and raise hellÂ again and probably end up getting shot the next time by friends, family, or neighbors.Â Â Â Â Â Â No great loss.Â Â Find a empty lot, dig a hole, throw him in.Â Â Next!
I hope this gentleman moves next door to you and blasts you with his music so you can defend him against the big bad policeman
Comments…..Well, well, well, it is the power game being played out at grass roots level!
Once the dumb ass authorities realise what they can supposedly do in the name of the law, the average Mr Joe/Mrs Joe will find out that breathing is an offense!
Really, it is the POWER CORRUPTION that ruins the whole existence of us folks.
These tin pot “Hitlers” get all plumped up with their own self importance resulting in the severe harassment seen above!
“I can do this so I WILL!” is so pathetic that some people need to step back and ask themselves, ” Who am I working for? These are my fellow country men and are simply living their lives”
If a citizen is committing an offense by taking a photograph IN THEIR OWN HOME, of an uninvited guest, the law is an ASS!
The general population needs to become hostile in their reaction to instances like this!
He screwed up by allowing the man wearing the government costume into his home.
What I’m waiting for is someone to shoot an ‘intruding’ officer, only to have his buddies respond to the scene – and do the ensuing ‘investigation’….. its going to happen sooner or later…
While I generally support law enforcement, this officer was waaaay out of line.Â I agree that criminal penalties should apply.Â A police state we do not need.
Paul, I am with you on the courteousness and professionalism of officers I have run into here in Texas – includes local and state, big towns and small. Heck, even when I was arrested way back when they were really nice 🙂
This article is not in anyway intended to be a condemnation of law enforcement.
I just think that allowing citizens to photograph / video graph (especially in public), and use that evidence in court, will go a long way to ensuring everything stays on the up-and-up.
I have friends in Texas law enforcement.Â I know from ride-alongs and conversations that what’s reported doesn’t always account for how the officer was treated.Â As one officer told me, “it does no good to poke the monkey with a stick”.Â His way of saying that LEOs are human too.Â Start disrespecting them, cussing at them, insulting them, etc., and eventually some of them will get angry and take actions they otherwise may not have.Â We’ll never know for certain how officer Alderete was treated by Olvera but, in the end, officer Alderete exceeded his authority.
As long as Police Officers maintain a “US vs Them” attitude toward the civilians that they are sworn and paid handsomely (in CT ) to assist, serve and , in a limited sense, protect, then there will be problems. Some of my cop neighbors used to have a three tier accessment of the population, and that was ; Dirtbag, scum criminals….Dumb civilians…. and cops. Now there seems to be a trend with the police to treat every person as a potential madman/murderer/ terrorist/potential threat. I personally have had pretty good experiences with the police around the country, as I was a long distance truck driver with United Van Lines for decades. The only issues I had were with certain states that apparently provided little oversight(at that time) to police conduct; TN in the 80’s and 90’s, MO in the 80’s, CA always, My home state of CT with the DOT inspectors only- the state police were fine, and a few others. I think it depends on the leadership’s attitude and how that trickles down to the officers doing the street work. Sure, if a cop gets out of hand then reprimand him in proportion to the offense. But then immediately that cops SUPERIORS should be investigated byÂ a independent agency to see if this was a one off or a trend developing in the organization. I doubt that many people become cops to kill, torture, or bully people. But human nature is what it is and there can be bad behavior to watch out for. (BTW- I hope you all appreciated how I covered my a– concerning the CT state police :))
I appreciate the fine job law enforcement does in keeping society civil.Unfortunately it’s the ‘bad apple’ that gives them the bad reputation.
I believe that in an economic collapse where the criminal element rises up to wreak havoc on us all, law enforcement will become a target. Criminals will seek ‘payback’ against the system that arrested and prosecuted them.The ‘bad apples’ fuel that hate, and the system needs to weed them out.
No one should be above the law.
All great comments folks.
With technology, if it is used properly, we have the ability to provide real-time information about any situation. We already have cameras on most major intersections in America. Police officers have them in their vehicles. We’ve got them mounted on laptops and carry camera phones in our pockets everywhere we go. Why not mount video/audio on officers and allow citizens to do the same in public places?
In my view, since the technology is already prevalent, we might as well use it for the betterment of our justice system.
It seems to me that these systems are currently being used to monitor the populace. That being said, I don’t see a problem with using the same systems to ensure justice is upheld.
No more ‘he said, she said’.
I realize it sounds Big Brotheresque, but we’ve already accepted Big Brother technology in most aspects of our lives…
Just thinkin’ out loud.
They need to overturn those state laws that prohibit photographing of the police, since it does not possible harm and records whether the government’s (police) interactions with its citizens when it comes to using force, is justified and fair.
Police, (local, state, and federal) have FAR TOO MUCH authority in our society. Â We would do very well to strip away as much power from police as possible.
There there little sheeple…
Now calm down and follow your herd “leaders” quietly and peacefully to the slaughterhouse over there. Don’t “defy authority” and keep on believing in “the system”. When we hear you declare loudly and proudly that you are “free” it’s always good for a laugh. As for all you “law enforcement” officers, a heartfelt thank you for enforcing all our “laws”. We’d appreciate it if you would continue getting rid of all those pesky, problematic “peace officers” who actually believe in that silly document called “The Constitution”.
“Assume the position punk!”
A funny/sad cop story for ya…the 5 acres of land I own borders the Reedy River here in Greenville Co, South Carolina. I have appox. 400′ of river frontage, which has a sewer “right of way” road that runs along the bank. at the upper part ofÂ my property on the river is a semi large “shoal” with a larger pool formed at the bottom…as any fisherman knows, fish congergate in these areas looking for food.
I’m always catching people there fishing…while I do not mind them doing so, all I ask is for them to tote out their trash ie: Beer cans, tater chip bags etc. hence I had to put up signs sayingÂ “posted” with No Hunting,Fishing etc. (one right on the oak tree next to the “fishing bank””…well several weeks ago while out walking the property I come upon 3 people…you guessed it fishing… I said ” I guess its good for you folks that I’m not the Game Warden…did you not see the sign?”…first guy says and I’m not pulling your leg here…”we thought it ment from that side over that way”Â Â WTF?….then and this is the kicker, the second guy says and I shit you not…”I’m a officer with Greenville City Police dept.” WTF? WTF?… I looked him dead in the eye and said ” well really, then you of all people should know better”
Is this the kind of madness we are to endure?
@ Roger Mack
If you get the chance search,,,,Surviving Argentina, Thoughts on urban survival (2005),,,.
The author,Ferfal, talks about reports where Argentine Police conducted false raids on homes to literally loot the homeowner of his/hers valuables.The criminal officers would remove their nametags and conduct these ‘raids’ outside of areas where they are actually known. I’d hate to think things would get so bad in the U.S. that police would rob citizens, adding to that ‘bad apple’ scenario I was talking about earlier.
Back @ you Weedle
I remember those, but will find and reread them…thanks for the reminder.
It’s sad to think that the “Bad Apples” seem too be becoming the majority.
I have a group of motorcycling friends who are cops in the Athens GA. area and after hearing the stories they tell, I have the upmost respect for Law Enforcement…I hope they never fall to the “Dark Side”
A few weeks ago one of our local “peace officers” had an accident in his personal auto.Â Â Several other officers were called to investigate and as it turns out the cop that crashed was drunk.Â The two younger cops, trying to watch out for their “Brother” let him go.Â Â As the story broke, people around here were pissed.Â The drunk officer got a slap on the wrist and the two other cops got the same.Â Â Â If that would have been a noncop they would loose their license and possible jail time.Â This is bullshit!!!Â Â Most of the cops around here have the close cut hair and the attitude to go with it.Â Â It’s hard to say yes sir when you don’t have any respect for them.
No one you meet is likely to be more immediately dangerous to you or your family than your local “law enforcement officer”. Â This article is merely hinting at what’s going on. Â According to the Cato Institute, there are upwards to 40,000 wrongful home invasions carried out by police every year in the USA. Â These police are not responsible for any harm they commit against you, nor are they required to return any money or possessions to you that they loot from your house.
Here in Washington, there have been many people killed by police who weren’t even in the right house, and as far as can be determined, not one cop has even lost a days pay over it. Â Every time a new police beating video hits the news (about once every two weeks or so), the cops around here get all worked up, and then the “community leaders” come out talking about how this is so tragic and how great our local cops are. Â What a bunch of bull……..
The minimum that should happen is that all police should be wearing these miniature cameras and the footage from said cameras broadcast on the internet continuously so that every cop is being recorded every minute of their time in uniform. Â Any “tech issues” or anything that interrupts the filming should be grounds for immediate firing of the officer and their partner. Â These cops are way out of control.
Here’s the chief reason why the USA has fallen as far as it has — the idea of having to submit to authority often embodied in the phrase might makes right.
A perfect example of it exists on this bogÂ in the first comment, “However mouthy assholes who defy authority …”
As long as some men delude themselves into a false sense superiority by through self-appointed power of force under a rhetorical cloak of legitimacy, which many call government, men shall suffer.
A wave of Totalitarianism has overcome Americans since 9/11 most recently being expressed in the bullies who give themselves the lofty title of “law enforcement”.
The appropriate name would be thug cops ignorant of compassion and their own kingdom within.
As a former law enforcement officer, i personally know that you play it by ear, if the suspect is an asshole, you write all kind of tickets to make them stick and hopes the judge throws the book at them. on the otherhand, if the suspect is nice/curteous (which goes a long way) you are more leniate of them. cut and dry for me. others would write their own mother a seat belt violation.Â Â
The Poster directly above me shows the EXACT problem with these dictatorial morons. Rule of law, is rule of law. There should be NO ability for one of these egotistical pblic servants (Who think they are our masters) to be able to “make things stick” by writting as many tickets as they think they can. They should have evidence, and be able to convict.Â Any additional charges meant to drive up bail and/or exacerbate the defendant’s legal case should be met with a judgement against the officer.
Wheedle, this isn’t a case of bad apples. Â It’s the barrel that’s rotten.