Bad Cops At Large In Pennsylvania


Collingdale, Pennsylvania policeman Carl White whose conduct is recounted in a recent federal court opinion is yet another glaring example of what is profoundly wrong with police conduct in the United States.

On February 22, 2014, Defendant Officers Carl White and William Eckert went to Plaintiffs’ home in response to a call made by their next-door neighbor, who allegedly complained that Mr. Gaymon’s mother (a guest in their home at the time) had parked her car so that the front tire was on the curb in front of the neighbor’s house. Upon arriving, the Defendant officers confronted Plaintiffs as they were leaving for a family outing. According to the Complaint, Defendant White began yelling at them in an aggressive manner, asking who spit at their neighbor. 

Plaintiffs Mrs. and Mr. Gaymon explained that they had done nothing wrong, and that their neighbor falsely accused them of spitting at her. Defendant White then allegedly approached Mr. Gaymon in an antagonistic way, placing his face within inches of Mr. Gaymon’s face while yelling at him. 

Mrs. Gaymon, concerned about the officer’s aggressive conduct, took out her cell phone and began making a video recording. Officer White approached Mrs. Gaymon, at which point she moved inside her home, continuing to video White by either leaning around the storm door or through the window in the door. 

According to the Complaint, White ordered Mrs. Gaymon to stop videotaping him, and declared that her doing so violated Pennsylvania’s wiretap statute. Her husband and daughter, who were standing in front of their home, told White he was incorrect, and Mrs. Gaymon had a right to record. White told Mrs. Gaymon that if she did not stop taping him, he would enter her house, seize her phone, and arrest her. 

Mrs. Gaymon told White he was not permitted to enter her home. He walked up the stairs to the front entrance, but before entering, he grabbed her daughter Sanshuray, handcuffed her, placed her under arrest, and threatened to deploy his Taser against her. Officer Eckert then removed Sanshuray from the scene. 

Officer White is next alleged to have entered Plaintiffs’ home and ordered Mrs. Gaymon again to stop videotaping him. Mrs. and Mr. Gaymon reiterated that they did not consent to his entry, and he was not permitted to be in their home. Ignoring them, Defendant White allegedly grabbed Mrs. Gaymon, pushed her up against the wall, and held his Taser to her chest. 

At this time, Defendant Officers Eckert and others identified as “John Does” joined Officer White and placed Mrs. Gaymon under arrest. They removed Mrs. Gaymon from her home, placed her in a separate police vehicle from her daughter, and drove both women to the Collingdale Police Station.

Criminal disorderly conduct charges were summarily dismissed after the magistrate heard Office White’s testimony, and this suit followed.

People like Carl White have no business wearing a badge or carrying a gun or taser. They are a disgrace to our country. In cases like these, civil liability is almost secondary to the relief that we as members of the general public really need, which is to permanently black list people like him from bearing arms in any capacity, or serving in a law enforcement or security position, public or private.

An across the board ban on gun possession to people found civilly liable for civil rights violations akin to the current prohibition on individuals with restraining orders against them, misdemeanor convictions, felony convictions, and people who have been involuntarily committed would be completely appropriate.

Law enforcement officers do not have to be the enemy.  But, in the United States, a lot of them are trying damn hard to be.  The reasonable, law abiding civilians need to be back in charge.

from Wash Park Prophet
via Denver News

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