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Old December 21, 2011, 04:43 PM   #1
bk688
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Police and strikes

It is generally illegal for police to strike (they become liable for criminal activity that occurs during their strike.)

Last year or the year before, there was a court case out of Georgia (I believe Georgia). A woman sued the police department because she was attacked by a man whom she had a restraining order against. Apparently the police failed to protect her.

The judge's ruling was that the constitution states nothing about police protection so it is the responsibility of the citizen to protect them self. A good concept if liberals could ever understand that.

Does this sound like a double standard? Police cannot strike because their absence poses a threat from criminals, but American citizens do not have the right to police protection in the first place.

I'm not sure if I titled this post well. I kind of expect more responses along the lines of being well prepared than about caring about a strike. I suppose I just want to see if anyone can make these two things make sense together.
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Old December 21, 2011, 05:06 PM   #2
C0untZer0
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In Illinois its the Blue Flu

This is not usually a big deal in smaller towns - for instance if the officers in my town went on strike, the county sherrifs could do a lot of what our city police do.

But when the police force of a major city goes on strike - it's a significant event.

The perception at least is that the criminals are biding their time, chomping at the bit to run wild.

For instance in Chicago... there really is no way for county sheriffs or surrounding police departments to do their police work.
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Old December 21, 2011, 06:00 PM   #3
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Unfortunately, the established law concerning the duty of police to protect is classified as a general duty not a specific duty.

I remember a case were some women were held in their house and repeatedly raped and brutalized over a weekend. They were able to call the police on mutiple occassions. The cops drove by and found no evidence indicating a problem and wrote it off.

The victums sued and the case went to the Supreme Court.

The Supremes ruled that the police have a general duty to protect. They do not have a specific duty to protect individual citzens.
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Old December 21, 2011, 06:51 PM   #4
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I had this conversation with a coworker and I got the feeling I blew his mind a little.
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Old December 21, 2011, 08:47 PM   #5
Don H
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bk688
It is generally illegal for police to strike (they become liable for criminal activity that occurs during their strike.)
Is this the law in your state? Would you please post a link to that law or reference the specific code about assuming liability for crimes and exactly what that means? Thanks!

Last edited by Don H; December 21, 2011 at 08:49 PM. Reason: Clarification
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Old December 22, 2011, 12:05 AM   #6
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Several courts have ruled, over decades, that the police have a general duty to investigate crimes and protect the general public.

They do not have a legal responsibility to protect any specific individual. The motto of "protect and serve" is just that, a motto, not their legal responsibility.

IF you call the police, and they do not show up, you could sue, but it isn't going to go anywhere. If they do show up, and do not protect you, you might be able to sue the individual officers (dependant on the specific circumstances) but you can not sue the police dept.

Its been tried, and the courts have been uniform in this. Police have a duty to protect us, but not you, or I, as individuals.

At least, that's the way I understand it. IF I am in error, please, educate me.
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Old December 22, 2011, 12:15 AM   #7
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Quote:
It is generally illegal for police to strike
Illegal as in they would go to jail? No. They could loose their jobs though with no recourse a la the air traffic controllers who walked off the job under Reagan. Police generally do not have a right to strike but you cannot force them to work.

Quote:
(they become liable for criminal activity that occurs during their strike.)
Please cite a law anywhere which upholds this. That is almost certainly not the case.
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Old December 22, 2011, 07:27 AM   #8
bk688
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Case law

I know this because any everytime my county board wants to play games with my dept and we end up being out of contract for 3 years (right now we're out 14 months) somone always brings that up and its immidiatly shotdown by the F.O.P. who cites case law after case law. Its always over little things too. Can't understand why the board doenst understand that if they deal with our little issues in one contract all future ones are limited to pay and issues they may have.

I doubt its actually written down In the compiled statues. But case law and bad publicity is more than enough to have a judge.


P.S.

Before somone goes on a rant about pay and the economy, My department is 12% behind in pay every year vs. comparible departments, while the stiking thing is different with corrections (I was originally speeking about Street cops so please take the above post in that manner) my department houses 700+ inmates including federal and other counties inmates (we rent out beds and make the county bookoo money). Our comparable departments house between 40 and 70 inmates. Comparables rely on county population and income to the county goverment not inmate population. If it relied on imate population, or the fact that we house federal inmates, that 12% yearly gap would be more like 20%.
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Old December 22, 2011, 07:28 AM   #9
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Liable

Liable as in the department and union gets sued and pays damages, not like the officers go to jail. Again, this is that evil little case law crap where judges make up whatever they want.
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Old December 22, 2011, 07:35 AM   #10
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I don't know about civil liability. The only major PD strike I am familiar with was the Boston PD strike, which I think happened in 1919. It was brought about in part due to years of stagnant pay, followed by the city's refusal to provide benefits or pensions to officers disabled in the line of duty by exposure to the influenza epidemic.

All hell broke loose.

My grandfather had told me about it, when I was little - though from a different perspective. He and his immigrant friends had been subjected to union-busting, and forced back to the factories, by Boston and area PD strike teams.

Needless to say, the BPD strike received little to no support from the labor movement...

Dennis Lehane published a novel about it a couple years ago.
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Old December 22, 2011, 07:48 AM   #11
bk688
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Just a thought

Somone posted that officers cannot be forced to work.

If a department cannot strike pecause they have a general responsability to protect, is that not being forced to work? I mean thats in a limited scope, because they could just quit, (which now there would be 200+ applicants lined out teh door, thanks economy!). But excluding quiting there are few options. Everyone taking sick days at once / thats been tried else ware, people were fired. Not doing much while your at work (to tickets, slow response to minor issues, etc). Thats been tried, and officers are diciplined because the dept has statisics on how much of what should be happening, any major drop is automatically the officers fault.

The only thing I have come up with is to have those street cops write down the make an modle and licence plate number of every county board member or village bord member (depending on the dept) and write them tickets every time they go so much as a mile over the speed limit. While that is tecnically legal, 100 tickets to 10-20 people eventually can be interprited as harassment. I don't think too many officers would like to go to court to answer for that one even if they come out on top.
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Old December 22, 2011, 08:42 AM   #12
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Okey dokey. Here is the case law on the ruling that nullifies a duty to protect.

The case was Warren v. District of Columbia[1] (444 A.2d. 1, D.C. Ct. of Ap. 1981).

http://gunrightsalert.com/documents/...444_A_2d_1.pdf

Writings on this case may be found at:

http://www.firearmsandliberty.com/ka...rotection.html

Quote:
Warren v. District of Columbia is one of the leading cases of this type. Two women were upstairs in a townhouse when they heard their roommate, a third woman, being attacked downstairs by intruders. They phoned the police several times and were assured that officers were on the way. After about 30 minutes, when their roommate's screams had stopped, they assumed the police had finally arrived. When the two women went downstairs they saw that in fact the police never came, but the intruders were still there. As the Warren court graphically states in the opinion: "For the next fourteen hours the women were held captive, raped, robbed, beaten, forced to commit sexual acts upon each other, and made to submit to the sexual demands of their attackers."

The three women sued the District of Columbia for failing to protect them, but D.C.'s highest court exonerated the District and its police, saying that it is a "fundamental principle of American law that a government and its agents are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any individual citizen." [4] There are many similar cases with results to the same effect. [5]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warren_...ct_of_Columbia

Quote:
The court stated that official police personnel and the government employing them owe no duty to victims of criminal acts and thus are not liable for a failure to provide adequate police protection unless a special relationship exists.
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Old December 22, 2011, 08:46 AM   #13
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If the police have no duty to protect any person nor to prevent any crime, pursuant to Warren, how, then, do they have a duty to protect us from ourselves? Witness the various laws, such as seat belts and helmets, which are designed for the protection of self, not the public in general.
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Gun Control: The premise that a woman found in an alley, raped and strangled with her own pantyhose, is morally superior to allowing that same woman to defend her life with a firearm.

"Science is built up with facts, as a house is with stones. But a collection of facts is no more a science than a heap of stones is a house." - Jules Henri Poincare

"Three thousand people died on Sept. 11 because eight pilots were killed"
-- former Northwest Airlines pilot Stephen Luckey
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Old December 22, 2011, 08:53 AM   #14
bk688
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Sounds good

I probably should have thought of specific duty to protect vs general duty to protect form the start, but there is some good info here wither way.

jimpeel: The exact reason I am teaching my daughter to shoot as soon as shes old enough to and why I'm moving out of illinois as soon as I can!
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Old December 22, 2011, 09:00 AM   #15
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Here is the saddest example of the use of the Warren decision by a government entity.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castle_Rock_v._Gonzales

I remember this case and thinking "She's going to lose this case." when it went to trial and appeal. The husband committed suicide by cop -- he pulled up in front of the Castle Rock police department and opened fire -- after he killed his three kids.
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Gun Control: The premise that a woman found in an alley, raped and strangled with her own pantyhose, is morally superior to allowing that same woman to defend her life with a firearm.

"Science is built up with facts, as a house is with stones. But a collection of facts is no more a science than a heap of stones is a house." - Jules Henri Poincare

"Three thousand people died on Sept. 11 because eight pilots were killed"
-- former Northwest Airlines pilot Stephen Luckey
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Old December 23, 2011, 12:23 PM   #16
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Quote:
Witness the various laws, such as seat belts and helmets, which are designed for the protection of self, not the public in general
I would opine that these laws are designed to make money for municiaplities, and were sold to the public as protection of lives (self) and protection of public funds (not having to pay medical costs due to reduced injuries).

Personally, I think it is a good idea to wear a seatbelt or a helmet, but I dispise the fact that due to these laws the govt can reach in my pocket (fines) simply because I choose what I consider an acceptable risk.

I would much rather have seen the law state that if you do not wear a seatbelt or helmet that the payment of any medical costs due to injury (that a seatbelt/helmet would have prevented) would by solely your personal responsibility.

But we couldn't have that, now could we? Imagine the concept of people being financially responsible for their own stupidity! Heavens, it would collapse our system!
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Old December 23, 2011, 12:32 PM   #17
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The arguments put forward for those laws were about keeping insurance rates affordable, and minimizing public costs for ER treatment.

The insurance costs could easily be controlled by indemnifying insurers against covering injuries incurred by policy-holders who did not use standard personal protective equipment (seat belts in cars; gloves, helmets, boots and jackets on motorcycles).

The ER would be another matter. I'm not sure if society is ready to say, "Too bad, so sad, no ER for you." Frankly, I'm heavy on individual responsibility, and I'm not ready to say that.
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Old December 23, 2011, 02:21 PM   #18
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Any time you see the word "safety" attached to a bill or law simply convert that word to "revenue enhancement" in your head.

The purposes of these laws is two-fold:

First: It provides near term revenue enhancement for government entities through fines and fees.

Second: It provides long term revenue enhancement for government entities through the longevity of the taxpayer. The longer you live, the longer you work. The longer you work, the more taxes you pay.

It must be understood that politicians realize that live taxpayers pay taxes year after year while dead taxpayers pay only once.

In all things political or regulatory always follow the money.
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Gun Control: The premise that a woman found in an alley, raped and strangled with her own pantyhose, is morally superior to allowing that same woman to defend her life with a firearm.

"Science is built up with facts, as a house is with stones. But a collection of facts is no more a science than a heap of stones is a house." - Jules Henri Poincare

"Three thousand people died on Sept. 11 because eight pilots were killed"
-- former Northwest Airlines pilot Stephen Luckey
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Old December 23, 2011, 09:37 PM   #19
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Quote:
The ER would be another matter. I'm not sure if society is ready to say, "Too bad, so sad, no ER for you." Frankly, I'm heavy on individual responsibility, and I'm not ready to say that.
Making people responsible for their debts is a far cry from "so sad, no ER for you". So you get stuck with a $20,000 bill because you were too stupid to wear a helmet. I don't see where that's the taxpayer's problem, its your problem. And if it takes evey spare nickel you earn for the next few years to pay it off, I see that as your problem, as well.

Being stupid should hurt. It should cost. It should not be underwritten at taxpayer expense. And personally, I don't think you should be able to get out of paying for your stupidity by bankruptcy, either. But that's just me.
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