Melbourne cops made to look foolish by protesters in tent costumes get vindictive revenge by stripping protester to underwear in park

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163 Responses to “Melbourne cops made to look foolish by protesters in tent costumes get vindictive revenge by stripping protester to underwear in park”

  1. Brainspore says:

    “I just tented my pants! Nyuk nyuk!”

    But yeah. That was pretty f-ed up.

  2. subhan says:

    I don’t know what Australian law is like, but here in the states I’d be filling sexual assault charges on every cop identifiable in that clip, and as publicly as possible.

  3. NoOneSpecific says:

    So, that would classify as an assault of the woman would it not? They restrained and undressed her publically humiliating her. Sexual assault?

  4. Crafty says:

    This movement is a test of law enforcement dignity everywhere.

    So many are failing.

  5. DeWynken says:

    Will these attacks on Gingers never cease?

  6. Joshua Ochs says:

    You know, until these protests, I used to give the police a fair shake. Hard job, little thanks, extreme risk and stress. A few bad apples who make the rest look terrible.

    These constant stories are pushing me more and more towards “vicious thugs who enjoy bullying people for a living”. We have what, a half dozen cities now with massive police overreaction, force, and violence?

    Depressing.

    • occupyordie says:

      i feel for the loss of your trust in police, but I’m glad that more people are waking up to this that has been a reality in many places in this country long before the occupy protests.  thanks for voicing your thoughts.

    • Guest says:

      People have been saying this for quite some time, and largely they’ve been met with “You must have been doing something wrong; law-abiding people don’t have anything to worry about.” One of the inadvertent effects of the Occupy movement has been the undeniable display of inappropriate use of force by authorities.

      I think people become cops for one of two reasons: they legitimately want to help people, or they’re bullies hiding behind the authority of the badge.

      Alfred Hitchcock was once asked in an interview, What scares you? He replied “Policemen scare me. In our society, they’re the only ones who can tap you on the shoulder and say, ‘Come with me,’ and you have to go.”

      Never doubt that policemen are aware of this.

      • Catbeller says:

        Police , and soldiers of the US military, and agents of any of the  US spookshows will be able to take you away. In the latter cases, forever and a day, without trial, if Congress gets its way.

    • dragonfrog says:

      Actually, in the first world, it’s not very risky.  Based on 1999 figures, policing is about as dangerous as gardening, 1/3 as dangerous as garbage collection or driving a truck, less than 1/10 as dangerous as logging or fishing.

      http://www.justicewomen.com/pw_petunias.html

    • flickerKuu says:

      I’m with you on this.

    • D Wyatt says:

      Thank god people are seeing the light now.  Ive been being beaten and harassed for about 10 years now (coincidence?) and its only gotten worse.  Ive been hit, purposefully cuffed incorrectly causing permanent feeling loss in one wrist, ive been given FALSE CHARGES on multiple occasions, Ive constantly been verbally and mentally harassed, ive been tortured, and more.  Its only now that people are seeing them for what they truly have become, even the people in the “nice areas” can see the blatant disregard for people.  Ive frequently heard police refer to people as animals or dogs.  I wouldnt even treat a really bad dog the way ive been treated.  I wouldnt piss on a cop that was burning to death and that is a fact.

      Its the police who run the prostitution and hard drugs through my neighborhood. Its like a movie but in reality. They find known areas, bust known sellers, condemn the house, buy a house up the street, open up shop, use confiscated drugs for re-selling, keep the hookers doped up, etc. Murder and cover-ups go right along with it. Its known, kind of like we know judges are corrupt, congress is the opposite of progress, and lawyers are snakes. Just facts.

      EVERY SINGLE TIME I speak of this someone just doubts me or tells me im doing something wrong.  Fact is, what im doing wrong is living in a bad neighborhood.  It really is a shame when good honest hard working people like myself fear the police more than the criminals.  I no longer call the police, I bought a bulletproof vest and a gun.  Nothing else a cop can offer me.

    • Fnordius says:

      You know, just to raise the tinfoil a little bit, I wonder if some of these cases of heavy handed police tactics are being ordered from above to drive a wedge between the police and the protesters. Maybe the goal is to suggest to the cops themselves that they are beseiged, that only their rich overlords truly respect them?

      • Daniel says:

        We’ve had this “War on Drugs” thing going on for like 30 years now despite statistics proving that it’s having no negative impact on the availability of drugs or the profitability of drug distribution.  It leads to ridiculous numbers of minor drug offenders being imprisoned — disproportionately ethnic minorities.  At this point, the “Land of the Free” has the highest incarceration rate of the world because of these policies.

        It’s not the least bit paranoid to suppose that the point of all this is to drive a wedge between law enforcement and civilians.  I’d say that there’s no other reasonable explanation for the War on Drugs or the War on Terror for that matter.

  7. Donaleen Kohn says:

    Boy oh boy, cops are vindictive and have NO sense of humor about themselves, let alone an appreciation for the absurd.

  8. joeydetroit says:

    Kinda rapey, Australia. Clearly law enforcement is showing with OWS that they are able to behave worse than the ‘criminals’ they are supposed to protect us from.

  9. jimh says:

    Christ, what assholes.

  10. Sean Nelson says:

    I see kids every day with baggy pants and shirts that could easily be used as a tent.  They’d better watch out.

    …Also, I bet the next set of tent costume wearers don’t wear underwear.

  11. Stephanie says:

    My god, that poor woman. If that were me, I’d be pressing charges. The police have to no right to slice off her clothing, no matter what she’s wearing. She’s clearly under duress and saying thing like “Don’t undress me, this is not consensual, don’t take my clothes off.” Those police ought to be ashamed of themselves and lose their jobs, to boot.

    • EvilSpirit says:

      If by “lose their jobs” you also mean “not be allowed within 1000 feet of a school,” then you’d be treating them like any other lawbreaker, at least in these parts.

    • graou says:

      I agree with you, but am i the only one considering the guy shouting at the end seems overly dramatic ? I mean, how would he shout if the girl had been raped or shot…
      To be clear I’m a huge fan of the idea of tent outfits, the reaction of the cops is stupid and disgraceful, but come on, when you do things like that you have to consider the eventuality of disproportionate response from the cops, and being in underwear in public isn’t traumatic for me… But maybe it’s just me…

      PS : “Can you please call the cops” was excellent by the way, i’ll try to remember it when i see police abuse people.

      • makalove says:

        The man shouting at the end seemed overly dramatic to me, too, but the raw emotion in his voice made me wonder if he had an emotional relationship to the victim (partner? sister? etc.).

        As far as considering in advance that a cop might sexually assault you if you wear a tent to the park, isn’t that sort of like saying that rape is wrong but rape victims should have considered in advance that they might be raped if they go out in a short skirt?? The victim’s choices may have begun the conflict, but her choices are not the cause of the illegal and inappropriate behavior – that distinction belongs to the cops who stripped this woman in a public place in direct opposition to her stated objections. You may not feel being in your underwear in public is traumatic, but it’s the way she ended up in her underwear that is likely the most traumatic part of this.

        i agree completely, by the way, about “Can you please call the cops”! Perfect response to police misconduct.

  12. PhosPhorious says:

    So rather than looking slightly foolish, they prefer to look like rapists and sex offenders.

    Good call.

  13. ycleptShawn says:

    Did she originally have clothes on under the tent?  Seems weird to be in bra and panties under the tent outfit.  Then again, a tent in the sun can be pretty warm.

  14. Guest says:

    And once again the local police prove they are the most organized gang in the city.

    • dxx says:

      I’m starting to wonder if the world’s police forces are basing their training on Chicago’s police forces or if Chicago just used to get the most public coverage.

      • Will Traxler says:

        I think it’s a bit of both, I live in Chicago and I can safely say that some cops here are the worst kind, but there are plenty of friendly ones. However, if you piss off a Chicago cop, god have mercy on your soul.

        • Catbeller says:

          I was hit by a car in Chicago. After I called for police, I waited an hour… and gave up and went home. 
          When the big antiwar march in 2003 went down, there must have been 5000-10000 cops on the route, with hundreds of cars on lower Wacker and helicopters in the air… Chicago is at core fascistic and always has been. Not a slur, just a checklist. The government doesn’t work for us, never did. Works for banks and money men. They do not like protests, no sir – those piss off the real bosses royally.

  15. dxx says:

    Did Mark Horwood remove his comment or did it get moderated out? Either way, CWAA.

  16. she could have worn clothes inside, but didn’t. How much more are the cops supposed to take. You want to make a statement against the government, politicians and all involved in making policies … go ahead. Don’t F around with the cops who are doing their jobs.

    Why wasn’t she wearing anything underneath the tent? Huh? She’s in public. A tent is not a home. Public indecency is what she should have been charged with next.

    • dxx says:

      Last I checked, there wasn’t any law declaring that a tent couldn’t be used as clothing. (To clarify: I’m not Australian, but I would LOVE to be proved wrong here. Then at least we’d have faith that the officers were actually upholding the law.)

      Police should act responsibly, not emotionally.

    • bob d says:

      Hmmm, can’t tell if trolling or complete idiot…

    • Brainspore says:

      Don’t F around with the cops who are doing their jobs.

      Interesting interpretation of “doing their jobs.”

    • subhan says:

      If she was doing anything to warrant stripping her in public, she should have been placed in the back of squad car & arrested, taken to the station, & dealt with there.  The fact they left her sitting naked on the ground after the assault is pretty telling evidence that this was purely vindictiveness. 

    • Dr_Wadd says:

      Probably just as well the video didn’t show too much of her ankles, I’m not sure how you would have coped with that.

    • foobar says:

      You do realize that December is to Australia what June is to North America?

      • Sgt_HulkasToe says:

        Hey, for these purposes, I’m agreeing that they can be naked in a tent.  But still, Sergeant. What would you do?

        • mccrum says:

          Give her my jacket, give her a ride home, give her some decency.

          • Sgt_HulkasToe says:

            Alright.  Fair enough.  But you probably wouldn’t give her your jacket.  Tough to explain that to the boss tomorrow at roll call.  I suppose you could let her go.  But you’d end up with 8 guys without jackets and still have walking tents.  I don’t think that anyone should be humiliated. 

          • mccrum says:

            She gets the jacket to wear until we get to the car where I can give her a blanket or something from the trunk.  I’m not giving it to her for keepsies but I’m sure as hell not going to leave anyone out in a park in their skivvies no matter what.

            Protect and serve.  Not just protect your job.

        • foobar says:

          I don’t see what the real issue is with people in tent costumes in a public park. Are Melbourne police so over funded that they really have nothing more pressing to deal with?

          • Itsumishi says:

            They do seem to make a lot of money by getting their rookies to fine people for jay-walking all over the CBD every few months. I don’t mean the odd lone cop fining the people for stepping in front of traffic or anything. I mean a dozen cops situated at a major intersection fining each and every person that jaywalks. 

        • dragonfrog says:

          How about leave her the hell alone, since there’s no sign she’s doing anything wrong.

    • MertvayaRuka says:

      If their reaction to someone having a bit of fun with them is to tackle and forcibly undress them, they shouldn’t be cops. Fuck that, they shouldn’t be able to interact with the public except perhaps from on the other side of a sturdy set of steel bars or perhaps through a solid half foot of lexan.

  17. Don’t F around with the cops who are doing their jobs.Interesting interpretation of “doing their jobs.”

    Don’t feed the trolls! I know they’re cute, and they keep looking at you with those big, sad eyes… 

    • Catbeller says:

      When, exactly, do we get to tell our “public servants” to knock it off? If we’re not their bosses, who do they work for?

  18. Mark_Frauenfelder says:

    The police are allowed to do whatever they want to people who aren’t rich. That’s one of the perks they get for being the faithful minions of the 1%.

  19. alex4point0 says:

    If you want to let Victoria Police know what you think of their behaviour, you can drop their Digital Media Unit a line on twitter at @VictoriaPolice:twitter . #occupysocialmedia #ashamedvictorian http://www.lyricstime.com/nomeansno-victoria-lyrics.html #nottoofarfromthetruth #yesitsnotcanada

    edit: the Victoria Police response: http://www.vicpolicenews.com.au/more-news/8359-victoria-police-response-to-todays-occupy-melbourne-incident.html

  20. Graeme Merrall says:

    Supposedly the protesters were warned by council staff that if they wrapped themselves in the tents they’d still be removed. However, I can’t believe that there’s a bylaw that forbids the wearing of tents
    What disappoints me about the video clip is that all the police officers were filmed only showing from the shoulder down.  It’s potentially difficult now to identify officers unless more footage surfaces. More disturbing is that the numbers on the officers uniforms appears to be removed – another big no-no and one that’s come up repeatedly in the Australian press

  21. willyboy says:

    That correspondent reminds me of Andy Rooney.

  22. Jonathan Roberts says:

    As far as I can tell, the ‘rules’ for protesters and police often seem to be to put the other side in a bad light. If the police can (through agents provocateur or other means) make the crowd a bit violent so that they can make arrests and dismiss the movement as a bunch of unwashed hippies or thugs, they’ve won. On the other hand, if the protesters can show footage of police brutality against them, public sympathy switches to their side. This wasn’t just some childish prank, it was clearly a publicity stunt as they were expecting the police to try to ‘evict’ them and wanted to see what would happen. Warm or not, I don’t just drop my pants when the police arrive. I suppose the idea here was to try to make the police look silly, rather than ending up without clothes in the middle of a public park. Of course, in this case the police seem to have taken the bait and bitten down hard.

  23. Sgt_HulkasToe says:

    Alright.  So I could say that as an ex-cop, I agree with the guy who says why are they naked.  But then I’d get yelled down as a troll and ignored as having a different view.  

    So, I would pose to you.  You’re a Sergeant with a squad of 8 cops.  You have been assigned the job of clearing the tents from the green, because camping is not permitted.  What do you do?  Bear in mind, that this is a lawful order, so you can’t ignore or defy it without losing your job.  

    • PhosPhorious says:

      “What do you do?”

      Arrest them.  Take them in.

      Do NOT strip them on public and then leave them.  Do cops have NO standards whatsoever?  Does “doing your job” excuse everything?

      • Sgt_HulkasToe says:

        Alright.  So they’re wearing tents.  Hard to put them in a police car with a popped out tent.  Now, they could have stripped them of the tents and put blanket around them, but seriously, what would you do?

        • Guest says:

          I’d fire you and hire a cop who could mange to do this without being a barbarian or an obstinate jerk about it.

          • Sgt_HulkasToe says:

            No.  You’re the boss on the scene.  So you’re saying you’d call for a Lieutenant and assume he would fire you for being sub-human.  Unlikely.  So you would do nothing?

        • William Joseph Dunn says:

          ” Hard to put them in a police car with a popped out tent.  Now, they could have stripped them of the tents and put blanket around them, but seriously, what would you do?”

          but they didn’t put them in a squad car because the cops knew no law was broken. the fact that they just left her there proves that. they just got their little feelings hurt, so they decided to teach her a lesson by assaulting her and if you don’t think it’s not assault, if they saw a civilian do the same thing they did, they would arrest that person.

           what would I do? I would walk away because you can’t arrest somebody because you don’t like what they are wearing.

          • Sgt_HulkasToe says:

            There is a law that prohibits tents in the park, or camping.  And they were there illegally.  So you’re refusing to follow orders?

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            So you’re refusing to follow orders?

            Have y’all not heard of the Nuremberg Defense down there in the Southern Hemisphere?

          • Guest says:

            Didn;t they disobey orders for not taking her in when she had broken the law?

            they stripped her and left her.

            And you’re defending them.  Why is that?

          • JProffitt71 says:

            There is nothing to defend here. Nothing. They cut off her clothing, and then promptly left. There was no arrest, and therefore presumably no law broken. Therefore, what they did was cut absurd clothes off of a woman. This is not defensible, it simply isn’t. There is nothing that can be explained at this point; this is a defined issue and they, and anyone taking their side on this incident, are in the wrong.

          • Catbeller says:

            Let’s just call it what it was: rape. Whatever it is they would charge US with if we cut the clothes off a woman and left her naked in public. 

        • PhosPhorious says:

          “Now, they could have stripped them of the tents and put blanket around them”

          That.  Why is that not a “serious” option?

          They stripped her and left her there.

          You’re defending them with a moronic rhetorical questions.

          Once a cop, always a cop, I suppose.

          • Sgt_HulkasToe says:

            You’ve misunderstood.  This is not rhetorical.  This is an actual question that they faced that day.  My point is that it’s easy to call them facist tools of the state.  But they are people just like you who have to make split second decisions often.

          • InvertedLens says:

            Split decisions can be argued when your life is at stake.  There was plenty of time before they originally approached the tents, and then turned around and left.  To think about their actions and even the point of being ordered to have the tents cleared out.  This is inexcusable, despicable and rape-like. 

          • PhosPhorious says:

            Sgt_HulkasToe:What makes this a rhetorical exercise is because the situation you are defending is not the one that transpired.There was no “split second decision.”  there was no “How do we get her into the squd car in that get up?”The cops went away and came back.  They stripped her without arresting her.All the exculpatory possibilities that fascinate you so much exist entirely in your head.

        • John Smith says:

          Wow, cops really are stupid. remove the poles, dirt brain.

        • i’m sure the cops in Oz have bigger vehicles. if not commandeer a flat bed truck or bus. either way it’s simply a logistical issue and the on the ground commander should be able to improvise as need or hire someone who can.

        • Bodhipaksa says:

          Your entire argument is predicated on the police having been given orders to remove tents from the park. Wearing a tent as clothing is arguably odd, arguably humorous, arguably cheeky. But what it  is not is “camping.” Now I doubt very much whether these police officers had orders to forcibly remove tents worn as clothing, so your argument is moot.

        • exoskeletor says:

          Well, if I couldn’t figure out what to do in a situation like that I guess I wouldn’t deserve the position. Hypotheticals like this are useless. Cops, especially the higher ups, need to be able to think on their feet and be able to assess a situation like this as a potential PR problem.

          Me? I would have walked her (in this case) to a safe area, maybe a paddy wagon, called a matron, and have her civilly undressed in private. Duh. Then take her down to be booked if that’s what was going to be done or let her make a call for some clothes or get some from bystanders, and let her leave (as the hero she might think she is, but still control my fucking ego). It’s really not rocket science. I’d have a lot harder time dealing with David in DC hanging onto a building’s framework. What would you have done about him? Shot him?

        • cnawan says:

          1. The follow up video (where she confronts the cops, tells them she wants to charge them with sexual assault, they refuse and laugh at her) takes place in front of a large police van, which I believe was parked on the edge of the park.

          2. Among the police officers forcibly disrobing her are female cops.

          What I might have done is have the female cops escort her into the van, assist her (if required) to remove the tent and give her something else to wear.

          Now, how hard was that?

      • ernunnos says:

        How? They’re wearing tents. You have to get them out of the tents in order to fit them into a squad car. There is no good choice for the cops. That’s the point, that’s the kind of intractable situation the protesters wanted to create. And they succeeded. Congratulations.

        You notice this is not inconveniencing the criminals who created the financial crisis one bit?

        • PhosPhorious says:

          So they stripped her in order to arrest her?

          Then why didn’t they arrest her?

        • Brainspore says:

          There is no good choice for the cops.

          If only there had been some way for the cops to walk away WITHOUT stripping a young woman in public first. Alas, we live in the real world where entertaining such fantastical notions clearly gets us nowhere.

        • InvertedLens says:

          They didn’t arrest the girl though, they all walked away with the tent scraps.  

        • Xof says:

          Because the one thing we are *absolutely sure of* is that the police of one of the largest cities in Australia have nothing larger than a SmartCar to transport prisoners in.

        • Itsumishi says:

          As John Smith pointed out above the really obvious solution is to remove the poles. 

        • Mark_Frauenfelder says:

          I missed the video where they put her in the squad car. The one I saw is where the left her half naked on the ground.

    • VerySincerely says:

      Ignore human rights laws. Remember, the most important thing is that the police save face. Go ahead and sexually assault and humiliate the young woman in the park. Job well done. 

    • Jonathan Roberts says:

      Cut the metal/plastic supports and leave the protesters wearing ponchos?

      • Sgt_HulkasToe says:

        I like that idea.  I support that.  Prevents them from camping in it and yes allows them dignity. +1

        • PhosPhorious says:

          I’m curious, since hypotheticals seem to be your thing:

          What would you do to the officers involved, if you were their superior?  High fives all around, or something more formal, like a commendation?

    • sincarne says:

      Police have been doing a pretty thorough job of clearing parks of protesters in the past month. Some peacefully, some like stormtroopers. Suddenly they put on tents and it’s all changed? Interesting. If someone were to play peekaboo with you, would you really believe they’d disappeared?

      I’m getting sick of people really digging to find excuses for this. This was petty vindictiveness that left a woman underdressed in a park. Nothing else.

    • Brainspore says:

      You have been assigned the job of clearing the tents from the green, because camping is not permitted.  What do you do?

      I’d walk away once it was clear that the tents were part of a practical joke rather than an encampment. Maybe have a chuckle with my buddies about “kids today.”

      • ernunnos says:

        Despite what “Super Troopers” might have lead you to believe, the police hiring process does not generally select for an appreciation of practical jokes. You may or may not want to take this into account when encountering the species in the wild.

        • Brainspore says:

          …the police hiring process does not generally select for an appreciation of practical jokes.

          The Sgt. asked what I would do in that situation. But it doesn’t really matter if the police appreciate it or not. If you’re a law enforcement officer you can’t take personal petty vengeance just because somebody annoyed or embarrassed you.

          • Catbeller says:

            Not when there are cameras around. They usually take you into the alley and kick the crap out of you. That’s always legal, ’cause they define legal.

        • jimh says:

          So, wearing tent costumes is illegal, starting… meow?

        • flickerKuu says:

          Maybe it should start.

      • Which is exactly what happened a few days previously!

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKMwigI3mdM

        I think someone deserves a promotion =)

    • GertaLives says:

      You cannot use “following orders” as an excuse for breaking the law. If you can’t figure out a legal and responsible way of carrying out an order, you ought not to follow it. I’m not sure how it plays on the police side of things, but in the military, there’s a very explicit mandate to follow only lawful orders. Blow up an enemy tank? Check. Shoot a guy running naked and lipstick-smeared from your CO’s house with said CO chasing behind screaming “shoot that —-er”? Not so much.

    • Xof says:

      You do realize that what the police actually *did* does not correspond to your goal, yes?

    • foobar says:

      Technically, as soon as the protesters stood up, the tents were cleared.

    • Peter says:

      O.K.  here is my interpretation of the situation the police faced and why I think your comment sucks.

      1:  the police had to do something because, by god, they cannot appear to be human or lax or just plain humiliated by a civilian.  (why the hell do they refer to non-cops as cilviians….the cops are civilians too, nothing more ,nothing less.  They are not sacred gods to be feared and granted indulgences…they are public servants).

      2:  Then when they do that and are shown as action oriented goons here come all of their comrades, holding to the line that cops can do no bad and the old excuse ” OH, the poor Police!…they are just human….they were put in such an awkward position”….wah wah wah.   

      3:   Oh , they were ordered to remove the tents from the green were they….then they should have waited for the protesters to retire or take off ther clothes…at that point the cloths become tents again and have to be removed ….because of the Sergeants orders.

      4: The police can ignore the command and live ethical lives.  Following orders indicates that the police have been militarized.

      5:  Funny how you think a cop can be fired for not following a stupid order.  Cops can beat the crap out of someone for no good reason and the only punishment is 3 days off with out pay….fired!  that a baloney argument.

      You are welcome

    • Jo Bain says:

      The lawfulness of  the order is being debated in our federal court. A judge at a bail hearing I attended where someone was charged recently was not prepared to recognise the validity of the order and basically threw it out of court, furious that her time was wasted by the police.

  24. This wasn’t actually the first day this particular action was happening.  There’s a bit more information with Youtube links from the previous day here: http://www.occupysydney.org.au/2011/12/06/via-omel-occupy-melbourne-woman-stripped-in-public-by-police-tuesday-6th-december-2011/

    This is important to keep in mind when discussing whether or not this was a ‘split second decision’ by the police yesterday.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Why do you guys continue to trip over yourselves addressing the authoritarian troll. Ignore, delete, ignore. He’s got no leg to stand on, which is why the article was posted in the first place.They damaged the property of the activist and I argue they sexually assaulted the activist. Since when is public non-consensual sexual humiliation not a sexual assault?

    Disemvowelling is pathetic, either ignore or delete.

  26. Tim H says:

    If we are imagining the thought processes of the policemen, we might try imagining how they were perceiving what was happening.  They were probably told to go back and get the tents, which they did.  They stripped the tent off the woman, and only then did they suddenly realize that she was basically naked underneath the costume.  Up to that point, things were ugly but still within their understanding, after the stripping there WAS a split second moment when everything changed. 

    They had ALREADY stripped the woman naked, probably not understanding that removing the tent would cause this to occur.  At that point we see who the human beings are, who the good policemen are, and we see that the police turned and left the park.  They created a situation in which a woman was left all but naked, but then the left. 

    That’s not just bad human beings, that’s bad policing. 

    • They did understand that removing the tend would lead to this.  Well, sort of.  The protesters claimed that they were naked underneath the ‘tents’, their only layer of clothing.  When the police moved in one officer checked if this was correct, and reported that, in fact, protesters did have clothes on.

      Not sure if this was misunderstood as meaning ‘fully clothed’ rather than ‘only underwear’, but still, they were told beforehand that this was a strong possibility.

    • PhosPhorious says:

      “probably not understanding that removing the tent would cause this to occur. . . ”

      Exactly how did you calculate that “probably?”

  27. lostinutah says:

    The Police will not be mocked.  They are The Police, after all, and must be shown respect.  The Police are really quite sensitive. 

  28. Manny says:

    Ya know, hoop skirts are pretty much tents. 

  29. kairii says:

    There’s no excuse for the police behaviour demonstrated here.  To leave a woman exposed in a public park in her underwear — after the humiliating and frightening experience of having been forcibly, publicly, stripped is abhorrent.  Having said that:

    If we’re going to stereotype police officers — roll them all up into the thick as brick, humourless, bully-thug POLICE — then we oughtn’t be surprised when officers become alienated from the public.  There are d##@head police officers, sure — but not, I think, out of proportion to the  d##@head: decent person ratio in the general population…considerably less, I should think.  The Occupy movement has highlighted a lot of vindictive jerks in policing around the world; MOSTLY, though, the police have performed their duties responsibly.  Responsible policing doesn’t get a whole heap of media coverage; irresponsible policing does — as it should.  Bad cops should be named, shamed, punished, but officers shouldn’t be subjected to derision and prejudiced assumptions (as in some instances above) merely by virtue of their job — a job which is stressful, difficult and all too often thankless.

    • MertvayaRuka says:

      They’re not subject to derision and prejudiced assumptions merely by virtue of their job. They’re subject to derision and prejudiced assumptions because they routinely do NOT name, shame or punish substantially those who are engaged in “irresponsible policing”. And if they’re going to stick up for the humorless bully-thugs that happen to wear the same uniform they do, they can fucking well deal with the fact that people aren’t going to like that. The problem isn’t just the vindictive jerks. It’s the supposedly “good” cops who can always be counted on to back them up despite their “goodness”.

      • kairii says:

        If they’re going to stick up for the humourless bully-thugs that happen to wear the same uniform as they do, then yeah, they can fucking well deal with the fact that people aren’t going to like them.    I’m not denying there are way too many bad cops, and I’m not denying there are too many cops who turn a blind eye to the kind of behaviour they themselves wouldn’t engage in.  But ‘too many’ doesn’t equal ‘all’ or even ‘most’.   What I observe leads me to believe that in my city at least  - Sydney – police of the kind you’re talking about are a sizeable minority.

        • FrodeSvendsen says:

          Doesn’t matter.. Would you feel safe that the officer you encounter isn’t one of the psychotic, pumped up beef-heads on a power trip? 

          You only need to meet one of them, and hey-presto, your life is turned right around.. 

        • teapot says:

          I’ll see whatever good you’ve seen the cops do here (Syd) and  I’ll raise you a hundred stories of them being power-tripping jerks or lazy morons. Anecdotes only go so far you see but you also seem to be forgetting that NSW has just about the worst history of police corruption in the country.

  30. waetherman says:

    As an aging radical (!) I have to say that the way that “the kids” today manage to outwit authority and bring innovation to the very idea of protest surprises and delights me. Seeing these “tent monsters” is an inspiration. Rock on, OWS. >golf clap<

  31. Itsumishi says:

    I wonder if this event will garner more support for the occupy movement in Melbourne. I sense it probably won’t. 

    By far and large people in Melbourne seem to believe that whilst occupy every other city outside of Australia is justified, in Australia it somehow is not. The basis of this strange thought pattern seems to be that the protesters have nothing to protest about as our economy is yet to go down the shitter to use a local phrase. The fact that virtually all of the social ills and class divisions that exist in England, America, Europe, etc exist here also  seems to be ignored. The degrees that these exist might be less in say Melbourne to London, but they sure as hell exist on a country wide scale.

  32. So glad to hear they are pressing charges against the police. Here’s hoping they win and win BIG.

  33. flickerKuu says:

    So did I see this right?   A protester is detained and stripped of her costume. (All of which may be ok at this point) -  but THEN, she is just LEFT sitting “nude” in a public place?  No- you have to take her into custody then, and make sure she isn’t breaking other laws by being naked in public. This is a rape / personal safety issue you have put her in now, and the police need to take custody of her and provide her with a jumpsuit or some privacy. There is no way this is right, decent, legal, or humane. -3874 for the cops and counting…

  34. Petzl says:

    Uh, anyone else grit their teeth any time she said “Mel-Born” (as opposed to Mel-Bin)? If it were Edin-Burra, Scotland, I guess she’d pronounce it “Edin-Burg”.

    This is CN-Frigging-N: Mr. Ted Turner made a big deal about calling having his reporters outside the US be called “international correspondents” and not “foreign correspondents.” You’d think they’d show some awareness of the countries they allege they report on.

    • Itsumishi says:

      No, and nor do I when I hear any English speaker refer to Paris instead of ‘Par-ee’ or Venice instead of ‘Venezia’. Pronouncing names differently is hardly something to get upset about.

      • L_Mariachi says:

        Your European examples are from different languages. Australians speak English (nominally.) “Mel-born” : “Mel-burn” is not analogous to “Cologne” : “Köln.”  Nobody says Mel-born, just as nobody says “War-sester-shire.”

        • EvilSpirit says:

          You fail to explain why that makes any difference. Nobody says “Paris” instead of “Paree” because they can’t speak French, or because they can’t pronounce “Paree.” They say it because that’s how it looks. Just as “Melbourne” isn’t going to look like “Melbin” to anybody unfamiliar with the local pronunciation.

        • Itsumishi says:

          Fine, Pall Mall or Paul Maul? Car-stle-maine or Cas-tle-maine? New Zealand or Nu-Zelind? Australia or Ostraya?

          The point is accents and pronunciations vary constantly, names of places being no exception.

  35. GlenBlank says:

    [Flagged original comment as requested and tried to reply to it.  Got "There was an error with your submission."

    Tried further down the chain.  Same result.  Interesting.]

  36. ScytheNoire says:

    Protecting and Serving the hell out of those people.

  37. miasm says:

    I googled for a list of police officers who had lost their jobs as a result of excessive or unwarranted use of force and ended up on this wiki page:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_cases_of_police_brutality
    and this page:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_cases_of_police_brutality_in_the_United_States

    …occasionally someone loses a job and manages to avoid prosecution.

    • FrodeSvendsen says:

      That was really depressing reading.. How they so totally fail to see that the people we entrust this sort of responsibility to should be held to a higher standard is mindboggling. 

  38. DMStone says:

    I don’t understand why the tent monsters couldn’t have had their laugh and then be done with it. 

  39. anharmyenone says:

    Remember the Earth Liberation Front arsons? I’m afraid that when people start accusing police of sexual assault that we will see the kind of out-of-control emotions that will lead some in the occupy movement to start forming cells. It’s time for people to take a step back and deescalate. Focus on ideas, not confrontation. The internet is the world’s greatest soapbox and is there to be used to propose any desired reforms.

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      The internet is the world’s greatest soapbox and is there to be used to propose any desired reforms.

      Kind of like a free speech zone where people can protest without have any effect whatsoever on the government or the corporations or the police.

    • Brainspore says:

      It’s time for people to take a step back and deescalate. Focus on ideas, not confrontation.

      Next thing you know they’ll be organizing boycotts and marching on the National Mall. We can’t have that! It might lead to something scary and new… like votes for women, or the Civil Rights Act, or ending the war in Vietnam. Best to just stick with angry letters to the editor.

    • EvilSpirit says:

      The flaw in your argument is that the police actually did commit a sexual assault. I see no grounds for not accusing them of doing what they did.

  40. what_do_you_care says:

    Basically this boils down to how some cops (and sheriff’s departments) are motivated by their emotions and politics, and feel that those motivations trump decency and procedure. I think they are emboldened when they see and hear people supporting them. Lt. John “pepper-spray” Pike, I’m sure, felt he was generating a good bar room story when he sprayed these kids directly in the face. And I’m sure he did receive secret accolades from his most malcontent friends for “having the balls” to do what they themselves “wanted to do”.

    You can’t say that this is true about all county sheriff’s departments or municipal police departments, and certainly about all cops, though. For a cop that has opposing politics, or even wrong-headed views, doesn’t have to mean a cop that does much harm to the public if he is a well-trained and disciplined public servant.

    For the many failures by police to carry power responsibly, though, the closest elected official should be scandalized by these incidences. We should hold them accountable.

    • donovan acree says:

      This is a systemic problem. Going after politicians will do nothing. Politicians come and go but it is the culture of police which we need changed. I suspect it can only be done from the ground up.
      Until I see police arresting police for this and other atrocities, all police are in the wrong. We/They need to stop this abuse. Excusing the actions and ignoring the inaction of the police only serves to continue the immoral and illegal activities of those we have granted power.

      • what_do_you_care says:

        I don’t know how you are going do any of these things, from the ground up or from the top down without politicians. Politicians are the products of democracy. The power of people is in democratic actions or revolutionary actions and in this “terrorism” climate revolutionary actions are going to go south swiftly and quickly with very little interest in the cause. 

        Is ballot activism so useless? Or as I wonder, is it just underutilized?  Or perhaps it’s under-organized? The protests have gotten some attention from some politicians. Why? Because they expect ballot rewards. They do change the conversation. 

        I don’t have all the answers but I don’t see the ballot box discourse happening as much as I think it could. 

        Other than that I’d say if you feel powerless then think about whatever it is that you do in life, and how you can do it better, and how you can do it to help change the conversation.

  41. Mister44 says:

    WTF, Australia? And your Steakhouses seemed so nice…

    • teapot says:

      “Steakhouses” don’t really exist here. You can get delicious steak at a restaurant or pub, but there aren’t really many dedicated steak restaurants. It confused me immensely to see “Outback Steakhouse” in the middle of Shibuya, Tokyo… Totally bizarro. I notice that there are actually some stores here in Australia now, but this bit of blurb from their site explains everything:

      OSI Restaurant Partners, LLC, headquartered in Tampa, Florida was founded in 1988 by those who believe in hospitality, sharing, quality, being courageous and having fun! *puke*

      http://shoottokyo.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/LTH-14.jpg

  42. peterblue11 says:

    you know your a hottie when your lookin good even wearin a tent. wowza :)

    • Brainspore says:

      you know your a hottie when your lookin good even wearin a tent. wowza :)

      You know you’re a sicko when you get turned on by video of a woman being sexually violated. Wowza. :-[

  43. Ipo says:

    I had no idea, in Australia, the Fashion Police was endowed with undressing-powers. 
    Is this about some new anti-burqa-laws? 

  44. teapot says:

    Usually Youtube comments demonstrate nothing but stupidity, but this guy has it right on the money.

    Victorian Police are mostly societies rejects & retarded inbreds that failed to pursue a real trade or career in the real world

    You know the morons were laughing about it back at the station. It’s not gonna be so funny when they find their asses in court.

  45. I have this pleasant fantasy* of a new fashion trend starting in Melbourne in response to this: everyone you see wearing tent-like clothing.

    (* Not that sort, stupid.)

  46. Mladen Kalinic says:

    Power of the super rich.  They don’t like what you’re doing, you won’t do it anymore.

    Let’s just see how angry they can get us to be

  47. My favourite bit: “Can somebody call the cops??”

    Illustrates the situation perfectly.

  48. parker_vmg3 says:

    It seems that a lot of thought was put into this event from both sides.  The real instigators were out of camera for the event’s, but one of them can be heard quite clearly.  The blowout for this will be amusing to say the least.  Your and my thoughts on the matter will be negligible either way.

  49. RaleighSaintClair says:

    In the end, what has peaceful protesting accomplished?

    • dragonfrog says:

      You’re kidding, right?  Please tell me you’re just setting up an opening for a “How do I love thee, let me count the ways” type enumeration of all the amazing things achieved through peaceful protest.

  50. donovan acree says:

    If she was doing something wrong, wouldn’t she have been arrested? They just cut up her property, left her half naked, and walked away.

  51. sufficap much says:

    From where I stand, this looks a lot like a gang-rape in progress. Citizens could (should) have intervened. Each of those ‘officers’ should have been placed under citizens arrest.

  52. mikey p says:

    There’s a lively debate about the tent-cutting incident on the Victoria Police Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/victoriapolice?sk=wall&filter=12

    You may, perhaps, like to let them know your thoughts on the matter.

  53. Panagiotis Drivilas says:

    Afterwards they should have arrested her for public nudity..

  54. Scott Minnis says:

    In Brisbane Australia: My house mate was attacked first by bouncers and then by cops because another black man had punched a bouncer earlier that night. This was just a little bit too ridiculous for me to hear. He was out for dinner with his girlfriend and another couple on a Sunday evening. I usually respect the police, but sometimes…

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