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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 10, 2001 10:33 pm 
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Location: Massachusetts
Your friends should be pressing charges against the off-duty officer for A&B AND the responding officers for excesive force. If nothing else, they might be able to use it as a "bargaining chip" to have their charges tossed. If your friends have injuries and the off-duty officer does not, they can also show damages. if they can find any witnesses to the original fight who will testify that they weren't a part of the original fight, then their case becomes even stronger. Best bet is to go to jury... Make sure it's a fully informed jury.

Good luck...


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2001 12:31 am 
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Location: Mount Dora, Florida
Thanks for the advice Panther. I'll pass it along to my two friends.

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GEM


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2001 2:09 am 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote
Quote:
"FA" is now charged with disorderly conduct and carrying a dangerous weapon. (a 3 inch jackknife)


So there is no such thing as a legal knife in this State?

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Van Canna


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2001 5:18 am 
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Location: Mount Dora, Florida
A karate student (nidan) and friend just left the house after relating his recent experience with off duty police, bouncers and on-duty police:

1. He and his buddy were at a nightclub where, nearby, another group of people began fighting.

2. Bouncers jumped into the fray and broke up the fight, then told everyone around, including my two friends, to leave the club.

3. My friends did not put up any resistance or did they say anything to the bouncers. They simply walked out.

4. On the way out, someone behind "friend A", pushed him. "FA" turned around, but didn't do anything but continued to walk out of the club.

5. Once outside of the club, the same person once again pushed "FA" from behind, this time hard enough to knock "FA" off his feet and onto the ground. At this point "Friend B" grabbed the person, asking him to "lay off"! When "FB" let go, the guy turned and punched "FB" in the head hard enough to cause a concussion.

6. Meanwhile, "FA" is getting off the ground when the regular police pushed "FA" back to the ground and proceeded to kneel on his face. The second fall and compression to "FA"'s face caused serious eye and face injuries.

7. Turns out the guy pushing "FA" and punching "FB" is an offduty policeman who was a patron at the club, not on duty.

8. "FA" is now charged with disorderly conduct and carrying a dangerous weapon. (a 3 inch jackknife) "FB" is being charged with Assault and battery!

For the record, I was not there and am hearing just one side of the story. I have know these students (both are about 25 years old) for over 12 years and believe what they say.

Regardless of whether they were innocent bystanders or not, they will end up with huge legal fees, possible criminal records, loss of time and the anguish associated with dealing with this mess.

Something to think about, next time you want to go "clubbing"


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2001 12:08 pm 
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Assuming the facts as alleged, and that they also can be proven to the appropriate standard, your friends/students have civil causes of action against the off-duty officer and the police.

They need to get counsel who can advise them A.S.A.P.

FA did not do anything to warrant his being knocked down or arrested, IMO. Presumably the pocket knife was discovered in a search following arrest - but as the arrest itself seems pretextual and illegal, the evidence of the pocket knife may be suppressible.

FB was using reasonable force - hardly any at all - to restrain what appeared to be (and IMO was) an illegal battery against FA.

Now all the human factors are going to start applying: who are the officers, who is the prosecutor, who is the judge, who are the jurors, who are the friends/students (or whom do they appear to be?), what are the agendas of the various players v. their commitment to follow the law...?

It has every appearance of staying a mess.

student


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 11, 2001 3:33 pm 
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I've posted this story for a couple of reasons:

1. Both of the students are experienced and highly skilled tournament fighters. (They are students of one of our most respected tournament fighters and who is very well known in Uechi circles). I'm mentioning this to point out the decisions a person must make when the **** hits the fan and the differences in mindset, in the dojo vs the street.

2. Both these individuals could have probably successfully defended themselves had they gone into a defensive mode during this fight. Instead of acting passivly and allowing themselves to be 'herded' to the exit and onto the street, they could have acted defensively and engaged the 'pusher' and perhaps hurting/disabling the individual and dealing with the situation on another level.

3. How does one prepare/train for such a situation? Certainly, what happened to these guys appears to me as more possible than meeting a mugger on the street. It is amazing how many stories I've heard from people involving crowded bar/nightclub scenes. One moment you are standing at the bar, talking to a friend and the next moment you are on the floor, in the middle of someone else's fight!

4. Aside from the obvious suggestion to stay away from these places, what lessons can we learn from my friend's plight. Seems to me we talked about the legal bills, time spent in court etc. etc., on another thread. There doesn't seem to be an upside to their situation.



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GEM


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2001 6:24 am 
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Posts: 181
Location: Sacramento, California, USA
Panther, Student, & Mr. Canna:

Doesn't the bar owe these guys some duty of care? From Mr. Mattson's description it sounds as though these two were pushed out of the establishment to fend for themselves. Shouldn't they have been protected by the inn keeper?

As to defense against a police officer, while a defense of self defense is available against the unlawful actions of a police officer, showing that a police officer has acted unlawfully is tough (outside the Rampart division of Los Angeles of course). Ordinarily, one is expected to comply with the orders of a police officer. There are ample remedies available to individuals who have been the victims of police misconduct.

Your friends should consult an attorney experienced in both civil tort actions and 1983 civil rights actions. They should do this as quickly as possible, since many actions against the government or governmental employees have very tight statutes of limitation, often much shorter than against a non governmental entity in a similar situation. Also, the attorney must be cognizant of any government adminstrative claiming process associated with bringing a tort action. In many jurisdicitons, one must first file a claim with a governmental entity before one is allowed to bring suit.

Finally, your friends might also find it helpful to avail themselves of any civil oversight statutes that may be in existence in their jurisdicaiton. There may be some type of civil review board available for investigating their case.


Peace
Robb in Sacramento


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2001 8:30 am 
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Thanks for your recommendations Robb. I'll pass your message along to the individuals involved.

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GEM


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2001 4:24 pm 
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Location: Framingham, MA USA
Did this take place in Dodge City?

Seriously from the civil point of view FA and FB, if not participants in the affray, should not have been assaulted by club bouncers, and what was the off duty cop doing going out on the sidewalk, assaulting FA and FB who were then leaving the area peacefully.

My advise is to get a local attorney and pursue all rights under civil assault laws.

Secondly the counsel can request a hearing on the conduct of the bouncer and the interloper in front of the chief of police or a captain grade officer. A police officer is responsible for his off duty conduct as well as his on duty behaviour.

Great comments from the others in the group, Panther, et al.

One strategy to use is to ask for a show cause hearing in front of a clerk magistrate if this has not already been done. Sometimes this can work well were counsel has good evidence that your friends were the good guys.

Action should be started as soon as possible since evidence can disappear like the wind.

Perhaps your friends, having in mind the circumstances were better off to have refrained,from doing any more that they did because they could have been badly outnumbered and hurt even worse.

It is one thing to know what the law is and another thing to get it to work for you.

Alan K


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Fri Jan 12, 2001 4:56 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2000 6:01 am
Posts: 493
Location: Framingham, MA USA
To GEM and the gang:

I forgot to mention that Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 269 Section 12 covers all the prohibited weapons. You will remember this on which was passed into law on January 1, 1975 and included certain martial arts weaponry.

The only blade limitation I could see in that statute was a spring loaded weapon with a blade length of over one and one half inches.

Prohibited are any length knife which can be locked while drawing the knife.

I remember that it was commonly supposed that you could not carry a jacknife with a blade lenght exceeding three inches, but the above statute controls.


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2001 2:58 pm 
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Al Kunian called me this morning in a frenzy, saying that all the topics in his forum had disappeared!

For the record, you set the number of days topics will automatically load when you enter a forum. This parameter can be set in "Preferences", which can be seen in the upper right corner when a forum is loaded.

Also, you can select the number of day's topics you wish to view in a drop down window, which also resides in the upper right hand corner of your window.

When someone posts a reply (such as this one), the topic gets a viewable position for anyone entering the forum.


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GEM


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2001 3:38 pm 
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Posts: 671
A similar event happened at CJ Scooters in Mansfield last year. Off-duty cop gets in fracas with a patron.

I believe both parties pressed charges and everything was dropped when the cop thought about how much more he had to lose than the other guy.

Kevin


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 Post subject: Real Life; Really Bad!
PostPosted: Tue Jan 30, 2001 5:07 am 
Is there anything we, as a group can do to help? A support web site or something?


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