Saturday Night At Nexus - Police Force

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Saturday Night At Nexus - Police Force

Post by watchout5 » Tue Sep 07, 2010 7:15 pm

Saturday night at the dome that was mostly red on the outside at Nexus there was a belligerent guy who was kinda being a dork. He was bumping into people, there were 3 cops watching/making fun of him and then they decide to walk him out. He was being a drama queen, held his hands out and was all, "what, what did I do" kinda thing. I go back to watching the stage and not but a minute or 2 later I look back to see 3 cops holding the guy down with their knees and him squirming on the very right hand side just outside the entrance (like 2 feet tops). 2 of them get up while the other one appears to be trying to restrain him, I was facing to the officers back at my location so I couldn't tell exactly. The other 2 officers left, I think one got their truck and the other was trying to direct people away from the scene. People made it to the left side entrance of the dance camp without seeing the altercation so the officer on top of the citizen stopped whatever he was doing and starting swinging a baton and yelling at people. It was a madhouse. That's not even the worst part, not only did they drag him away with a giant pool of blood all over his back, after leaving they simply left the blood open on the playa. I was shocked at how utterly careless these officers appeared to be.

I don't know what could have worked better, I don't think it's fair to blame just one party in this incident, but I do think the police force helps contribute to this problem just as much as a drunk guy dancing into people though. Could this situation been resolved without violence if we used rangers? Was this citizens fear about losing his freedoms? Or, was this a serious problem where a citizen required to be restrained by training that rangers don't have (like if he used a weapon or something)?

I might be bias because of my choice to use illegal mind altering substances but I don't see what the real purpose of the increased police force this year was. I went in 2008 where when compared to 2010 police were absolutely crawling yet I didn't notice more or fewer drugs out. I read in the weekly paper they were busting people inside camps based on marijuana smells? This helps reinforce my belief that they're only at burning man to bust balls and make money. If marijuana smells are bothering someone can't that be resolved with a ranger? Even if marijuana smells aren't bothering someone?? That same night I saw the police take 3 trucks and 2 ATV's and roll through Nexus at around 2AM, I don't know if they just needed a shortcut or something but like, I'm trying to party here dude there's plenty of space to do u-turns that don't involve giving all the e-tards partying red and blue light shows. I saw like 8 people moop right in front of the federal law enforcement people, if they cared as much about the land as they did to people buying drugs I don't feel like I'd have much room to complain. I felt disgusted, and I still feel disrespected. Those are my tax dollars being wasted on an abundance of anti-drug nonsense and complete disregard for mother nature. I don't expect them to be janitors, but littering is a crime.

All in all though, this was my best year yet, I had way more fun, I had few, if any, negative experiences. I just hope that citizen was ok and that we rethink how police should be used in our city.

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Post by maryanimal » Tue Sep 07, 2010 8:34 pm

After reading you comment I have to shake my head at the police officers. Sound like it's all a game to them. Wanting to play with peoples heads and flexing there muscles the way it sounded like they were doing is so wrong. Maybe that one citizen was just having a good time, a little mind altered but they saw it as a chance to show othere citizens that "This will happen to you if you act up or are fucked up". I wonder what next year will be like. Thanks for the insight!
Sometimes I'm confused by what I think is really obvious. But what I think is really obvious obviously isn't obvious.

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Post by Lord Of Ruin » Wed Sep 08, 2010 10:31 am's my $.02

I wasn't there, so I can't directly comment. But, a few points from someone that works security at events, has been a bouncer for years, works for both Gate and Black Rock Rangers.

First, you have no idea what the police actually busted the guy for. You have no idea what the guy actually did to precipitate the response getting him onto the ground.

But know that as a peace officer, in BRC, you have a higher than average chance that the person you are interacting with is on drugs, especially at that type of camp. And you have no idea WHICH drugs, how many, how much, etc.

You may be Mr. Peaceful Candyflip, but all are not. And BRC seems to have a much higher degree of non-compliance when interacting. Here when a peace officer asks something, the response is often "Why?" or "What's your problem?!"

The swinging a baton thing isn't unusual. Again, you have crowds of people that may react to one of their number being arrested. They are on all sides of the LEO. This makes LEO very, very nervous. Bet the people that stood back say 25 feet weren't uptight about his baton swinging.

Not sure what you think they should have done about the "giant pool of blood on the playa." It couldn't have been that giant, because they would have rolled ESD to him while still restrained. That's SOP there and I've seen it done. Are you saying you think the cops should have swept up the blood? There are so many bodily fluids and moop at giant dance camps that this is a ridiculous assertion. And blood will readily soak right into the playa, mitigating risk.

I guarantee you nearly 100% that if this person stopped whatever they were doing, unless he was dealing drugs, he wouldn't have lost his freedom. "Fear of loss of freedom" isn't a license to resist arrest or follow their lawful directions...aka Hey fuckwit, stop punching people when you're assaulting them.

FYI...are you SURE camp organizers didn't call for LEO presence to remove him?

Rangers might have been useful in this situation. We are very often called in by LEO to handle this type of situation. Yes, we are called by them. They generally will not do that if it's already into violence or some sort of drug arrest.

Rangers don't have any "training"...special or otherwise....about restraining people. That's not our job or mission. Some of us do have a security and self defence background, but cannot and would not use that except in self-defence while on shift.

Rangers rather are more the lubricant between participants and before the LEO. In fact, I'll often introduce that to the conflict. "Hey, you're talking to me now, so let's figure out how to solve this. The next alternative involves citations and handcuffs so that will suck."

I won't even comment on all your "hey man, this is my party and you're harshing it" type stuff. If you use (marijuana included) then you're breaking the law. If we choose to do that, then we have to pay the price if caught. Not saying I don't....but I'm not here whining that the police should just go away so you can have a fun party.

The fox provides for himself, but God provides for the lion - W. Blake (attribution corrected)

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Post by watchout5 » Wed Sep 08, 2010 7:00 pm

Lord Of Ruin's my $.02
I have a background in security as well, so I felt like I had an ok grip as to the roughly 15 minutes they were watching him for. You're so right that I don't know exact details, but that's why the majority of my article is just about how I experienced the event. Maybe I misunderstood the purpose/use of this forum by trying to open up questions, but I was not trying to assume I knew anything about the actions of the officers beyond what my eyes saw. If the actions the officers took were justified and necessary I don't want them to stop. I just don't think that after 15 minutes of watching this guy that the appropriate action was to cut his back open and take him away, and no amount of uncertainty about the situation is going to change that feeling. I don't know if I'm right or wrong, but what I witnessed looked very wrong and I don't feel like I should stay silent on the idea that he may have had several guns on him.

When you say "non-compliance when interacting", what do you mean? Are you talking about people so drugged out that they can't respond to a question like a name? Are you talking about citizens who know their rights and refuse to give out information unless legally required? Without knowing what happened, we'll never know what the right question to ask is, it would be silly to try.

The baton swinging was again an observation, if that's what's required I see no reason to question it. However, swinging a baton at someone could be just as dangerous as taking down a suspect in the middle of an entrance. I don't see how the cops could have seen his friend, but I did see a guy he looked to be with, who was standing at least 50 feet away from his buddy at all times when it all went down. He knew not to mess with them, it's called submit to whatever crazy demands the officer wants and then take your case to court. I felt like his friend, if that was his friend, was being very mature.

You're sooooo right about his blood, let's not treat blood like a bio-hazard because people pee on the playa. There were about 2 puddles, one about a square foot and the other about a square inch. Not the end of the world, but fucking gross. Maybe you want to dance in blood, but I have a feeling other citizens wouldn't want to, including me. If this happened anywhere but an entrance to the camp I probably wouldn't have complained as much, but that's where feet normally go and I thank the citizens who covered it up even if it seems you don't give a fuck.

I thank you for your comments, and while none of my comments were about making all police presence disappear I know that in the future you'll actually read the articles you comment on so that you'll understand the view point of the person you're commenting on. I think if the police presence is needed it should be there, but it should involve more about keeping me and the environment safe. I understand busting the citizen smoking a jay right in front of the police truck, but I don't understand why littering isn't higher on the priority list. Of all the places to litter this desert would be the worst of the worst place, and it seems the officers are more concerned about getting more revenue than actually trying to do anything that means anything (I know I'm soooo shocked too). I'm probably biased because here in Seattle we passed a law that puts marijuana on the lowest of the low on the priority list for our cops. It doesn't mean they stop arresting people, but if they see someone doing anything else against the law, ANYTHING ELSE, they are supposed to take care of that matter before taking care of a call only about marijuana. So you're probably right about that, I'm a spoiled little brat. :p

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