After a Maryland student was seriously injured during the melee that followed the Terps big win over Duke last month, cops claimed he had attacked mounted policemen and was kicked by their horses. This videotape says they're dirty liars.
The video that was just released shows 19-year-old John McKenna skipping down the sidewalk—yes, skipping—in drunken revelry when he comes upon two mounted police officers who block his way. After stopping and slowly backing up, three cops in full riot gear check him into a brick wall like he's Ulf Samuelsson, then start pummeling him with nightsticks before leaving him unconscious on the pavement. It does not appear that he even touched the horses and certainly did not cause "minor injuries" to them as the officers claimed in their initial sworn statements. Nice try, though. If it wasn't for our pesky surveillance state, they might have gotten away with it.
At least one officer involved has already been suspended and the Prince George's County police chief says the rest may be fired before it's all over. Charges against McKenna for "inciting a crowd" have since been dropped, but students and lawyers say he was not the only one attacked that night. There were several reported incidents of excessive force from "the most violent PD on the east coast." That title is according to this email we received about the Prince George's County police department the morning after the "riot":
AJ and the deadspin I team,
Obvioulsy by this point you have seen a ton of videos from the UMD post game celebration/riot. Something you guys probably aren't aware of is the long history of violence associated with the Prince George's county PD.
A couple of the lowlights from this is a no knock swat raid of a mayor home when he had the bad luck of having two drug dealers choose his front step to have drugs delivered to. Swat teams raided the place and shot the dogs for no reason. It was found to be excessive force. There was no resistance of arrest from the mayor, it was just a massive mistake.
A criminal killed a PG Cop with his car looking to escape. While in custody in jail, he was strangled to death. Surprisingly they just can't figure out who committed this murder even though they know who was in the Jail at the time.
The swat teams in PG county are used more than any other in the state. 4.5 times per day on average, which is over 1 more trip a day then the rest of the state. They are often also used for non-violent arrests.
Normally, I would say these are college kids who need to be taught a lesson. There was no reason to cause trouble last night. However this situation is starting to look like its the PD who was out of line. The PD feels like it operates outside the law. It has no respect for the people it is supposed to protect.
This may be good for you, for gawker, or for no one, but this is getting out of control. Some links are below if your interested.
Wow. I guess he was right! I should really pay more attention to the crazy anti-authoritarian rants that come into my inbox. But who has that much time?
University of Maryland Student John McKenna Beaten By County Police [ABC News]
Univ. of Maryland Beating On Tape [Daily IQ]