#RiseUpOctober—STOP Police Terror!

Police Rape & Impunity: A Revealing and Totally Outrageous Epidemic

Which Side Are You On?

October 19, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


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Break ALL the Chains!
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From a reader:

About three times a day, the police kill. Over 875 so far this year. Often very young. Often unarmed, or with their hands up, or retreating—and when this is the case, the victim is disproportionately Black or Brown. Yet time and time again, those murdering cops walk free. That’s because, as Bob Avakian (BA) says, “The role of the police is not to serve and protect the people. It’s to serve and protect the system that rules over the people.” (from BAsics 1:24) If the system has white supremacy woven into its very fabric, that’s the kind of policing you’re going to get—police terror has replaced KKK terror, and is part of their job. There are little to no consequences because it’s part of how they are expected to teach Black and Brown people “their place.”

This same system rests on a cornerstone of patriarchy—the domination of women by men. Every day and in a million ways women are degraded and abused, raped and beaten, bought and sold, and treated as less than human. That is the system the police serve, and in turn, it serves them back, allowing them to rape and dominate women with impunity. Consider the following stories—just a few from one month last year.

June 2014. A county sheriff’s deputy in Georgia was charged with falsely imprisoning women (locking them in an office in a courthouse), sexual battery (exposing himself, and groping them). May 2015. All five charges, felonies and misdemeanors, were dismissed by a judge due to technicalities (i.e., the prosecutors may or may not have missed a filing deadline by one day).

June 2014. A deputy in Colorado was arrested for kidnapping, imprisoning, beating, and raping his wife. July 2014. The deputy attacked his estranged wife in public, punching her in the face. May 2015. All charges were dismissed. The district attorney dropped the case during a hearing, citing “lack of credible evidence.”

November 2013. A police deputy chief in Utah was accused of obtaining and sharing swimsuit pictures of female officers in his department without their consent, and encouraging his underlings to do the same, for at least two years. The women in question say they were encouraged not to report, because of the deputy’s position and prestige. June 2014. After being on paid leave for months, he retired with full pension and benefits. The chief of police said those actions didn’t merit firing, and he “deemed the matter concluded.”

June 2014. A former Georgia officer was sentenced to 35 years on aggravated child molestation charges, including anal rape, for forcing sex acts from two girls while on duty and a woman he’d arrested. One of the girls, a 15-year-old who was forced to give him oral sex, had a hard time getting the story out in the trial. The defense lawyer was glib and repeatedly insulted and attempted to discredit the victims. The officer appealed.

May 2014. A police officer in Texas went after his wife with his baton and trashed the house, saying he would “throw [her] in the woods so the maggots can have [her],” and that she needed to be “cut by a razor, set on fire, beat half to death and left to die.” The entire confrontation was recorded. June 2014. He was arrested and immediately released on bond. This was the second time he had been charged with domestic violence, and those charges have been pending for three years. He remained a police officer. July 2014. He retired with full pension and benefits. May 2015. An assault charge was dismissed, and the officer was sentenced to 24 months probation.

March 2013. A New York police officer was charged with official misconduct after a woman accused him of rape, assault, battery, and a long list of other violations, after the officer arrested her saying she could go to jail or give him a “date.” December 2013. A judge ruled to let the officer walk, claiming the prosecutors built their case too much around the fact that the officer took video of the woman’s backside while she was being arrested—which didn’t fit the definition of misconduct. No sexual assault charges were filed. June 2014. The woman filed a lawsuit against the NYPD and the City of New York, for false arrest, rape, battery and other offenses. June 2015. A judge dismissed the lawsuit, claiming that even assuming everything she said was true, this did not warrant giving her a “right to relief.” All along, the NYPD refused to comment on the officer’s status.

June 2014. A police officer in Oklahoma was arrested on charges of sexually assaulting eight women, threatening them with arrest or physical harm. He was put on paid leave. November 2014. Five more women came forward to press charges; the 13 plaintiffs were ages 17-58. January 2015. The officer was fired. July 2015. After violating his house arrest two times, the officer was put in jail. His trial is scheduled for October 2015.

June 2014. Several sexual assault charges were filed against a former California officer who was an adviser to young people interested in careers in law enforcement. He was charged with molesting two underage Explorer Scouts. December 2014. The former officer pled no contest, which guaranteed him a vastly shortened sentence of two years, eight months in jail, and got at least three out of six felony charges dropped.

June 2014. A former Wisconsin police officer was arrested for killing two women, whose bodies were dismembered and stuffed in suitcases. This was evident and he fully admitted it. The officer claimed it was “rough sex gone wrong”; he was accused of murder. The former officer had for a long time met women through an s&m site where he was seeking a “24/7 slave, for absolute ownership,” and bragged about how he kept women naked, shackled, handcuffed, and caged for months at a time. The trial was delayed until November 2015.

This system that has patriarchy woven into its fabric works time and time again for its enforcers, and against women.

  • Sexual misconduct is the second most reported form of police misconduct—second only to excessive use of force.
  • There is no institution that keeps comprehensive, quantitative data about sexual assault by police: reports, charges, convictions, none of it.
  • The Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN) receives calls from survivors of police rape “several times a month.”
  • Already rape is the most underreported crime, with an estimated 60 percent of sexual assault going unreported; with police rape, the number that goes unreported must be higher (who you gonna report to??).

Look at what they do to women—false arrest, lock them up, beat them, rape them, and then what? Intimidate them, discredit them, interrogate them, insult them, criminalize them. In the end? Overwhelmingly, rapist cops either face no consequences at all, are put on paid leave, or are allowed to retire peacefully, leaving their victims devastated, battered, traumatized, or dead.

None of this is legitimate! This must be stopped. #RiseUpOctober—a Massive March in New York City October 24 to STOP Police Terror—aims to change forever what police are able to get away with. How the people see who are their friends and who are their enemies. Bring the people most affected by police terror to NYC, joined by thousands of others to issue this challenge worldwide: Which Side Are You On?

Everyone who is outraged at the crimes, the pain, the brutality inflicted on people by the police should put your time and energy into making #RiseUpOctober a turning point in the battle against POLICE TERROR. Which side are YOU on?



Their culture of terror, violence, victim-blaming, and enforced silence must be punctured through #RiseUpOctober. Let the suffering speak, and refuse to stop fighting until this atrocity is eliminated. As you fight, dig deeper to see what is at the root of these crimes against the people, and the revolution it will take to bring all this unnecessary oppression, here and around the world, to an end, once and for all.


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