Our council members need to act immediately and direct their city manager to officially order the city attorney to release the full audio recording of last week’s events. For the city to refuse to do so only proves that they have something to hide.
Other agencies release their tapes, and most even have video recordings of their officers’ interactions. (No wonder Burbank doesn’t this equipment installed yet, eh?) That’s why we see them on TV. So what could the City of Burbank be afraid of here?
The Leader today basically reprinted most of the official BPD press release. Let’s see if and where it doesn’t make sense:
After the boy interrupted him with “inflammatory dialogue,” the officer decided to “deescalate” the situation by returning the driver’s license to the mother with a warning instead of a citation, Losacco said.
The officer then asked the teenager to put his seatbelt on. He reportedly responded that he would only do so when the officer walked away. When the officer stepped back, the boy put on his seatbelt.
OK, fair enough. This was also straight from the BPD release. But then there was a paragraph break that immediately led to this passage:
According to police, sometime after the boy put his seatbelt on, he removed it and told the officer he was going to “fight him right now,” kicking the car door open into the officer’s knees. He then reportedly dared the officer to call for backup while his mother tried to keep him in the car.
Hold on. What happened in between? What do they mean by “sometime after the boy put his seatbelt on”? How long? Hadn’t the officer already ended the transaction?
The audio tape would tell us exactly what transpired, and/or why there was such a sudden change of heart in the kid — if indeed there was one.
Eventually he got out of the car, police said, took off his sweatshirt and approached the officer in a fighting stance, telling the officer to pepper spray him.
Eventually? Again, did the cop do anything that led to this new action? Did he change his mind about the ticket, thus escalating the situation?
The officer used pepper spray, but it didn’t have an effect on the teenager, who then punched the officer multiple times, knocking off his glasses, Losacco said. At that point, the officer shot him with a Taser and handcuffed him.
Wait a minute. How can pepper spray not have an effect on someone? This we don’t believe. Was the kid on PCP? And if the officer had his glasses knocked off etc. then how was he immediately able to tase the kid?
The kid’s still punching away, or did he eventually stop and get tased anyway for contempt of cop?
No, something in the scenario is being left out. The official police account also does NOT state the following:
Nevarez, a single mother of three, said that her 14-year-old daughter was also pepper-sprayed, and her 3-year-old niece was also in the car. Police said the teenage girl got out of the car during her brother’s confrontation with police and was struck by residual pepper spray.
That’s a new one. Where did the Leader get this info?
The incident was captured on the officer’s audio recorder, but police on Friday declined to release the recording.
Sorry, but it’s not up to the police to decide; it’s up to the civilians. So what are they hiding?
What are they afraid of revealing? And do we have a real city council going on here, or just an elected advisory board?
In other words, where’s the leadership? It’s not like Burbank doesn’t have a history of playing fast and loose about its police. Historically, these civilians have never inspired much confidence in this area.