In 2009, passing through a protest march, Ian Tomlinson was beaten and pushed to the ground by London cop Simon Harwood. He subsequently died of his injuries, but it took four years for the police to apologize to his family. Matthew Taylor, in The Guardian, reports on how London's Metropolitan Police finally admitted culpability after years of extraordinary efforts to avoid it.
The statement from the deputy assistant commissioner Maxine de Brunner – and an undisclosed financial settlement – mark an embarrassing climbdown by the Met and the end of a four-year fight by Tomlinson's family to find out what happened to the 47-year-old who collapsed and died as he made his way home. "I apologise unreservedly for Simon Harwood's use of excessive and unlawful force, which caused Mr Tomlinson's death, and for the suffering and distress caused to his family as a result," de Brunner said.
Tomlinson's widow, Julia, said the police admission was "as close as the family would get to justice".
Aside from the cruel fact of Tomlinson's killing, the most unsettling thing about it is how the police officer avoided serious punishment. Despite being caught on camera beating him, despite his superiors being caught lying about the circumstances of the killing, despite being found responsible for unlawfully killing him, and despite a string of earlier investigations for misconduct, Simon was acquitted at trial. That a jury decided this seems to evoke a peculiar willingness to trust authority, even in the face of overwhelming evidence of misconduct.
Propublica's blockbuster report on the magistrate judges in South Carolina revealed a system of patronage, cronies, and gross miscarriages of justice, with judges appointed on the say-so of a single state senator, without regard to whether they had any legal experience (some judges took the bench after working construction, or as pharmacists, or as underwear […]
State Snaps is a send-in-your-photos party wheeze aimed at fratboys. Spread amorphously over various social media platforms, it’s too sleazy to go mainstream but too successful to stay in one place. But the wannabe operators failed to register a key domain name, doitforstate.com, that reflects the viral motto “Do it for State!” associated with The […]
Google is reported to be under investigation by the United States National Labor Relations Board (NLRB.gov) for allegations of discouraging union organizing among workers, and for firing the so-called “Thanksgiving Four.”
You might know someone who can make a pipe out of any conceivable household object. But if they’re doing it every time they smoke, it might be time to get them a little Christmas present. And we’ve got just the thing: The Twisty™️ Glass Original Combo Pack, priced way, way down for December. If you’ve […]
With all the revolutionary tech that’s out there, it’s pretty sad that finding a simple stud in your wall can feel like dowsing for water. This can be equally true whether you’re using a magnetic finder and it’s reliance on “feel,” or an electronic unit that can give fuzzy readings (especially when the batteries are […]
Do you have any Star Wars fans on your list? Given the reach and output of its new corporate masters these days, it might be easier to ask if there’s anyone out there who isn’t a Star Wars fan. So let’s narrow it down further: Do you know a Star Wars fan who likes to […]