Friday, August 7, 2009
Yet another video has emerged of cops tasering someone for sitting in the wrong seat at a sports event. The victim this time was an old man attending an Oakland Athletics baseball game in Oakland California.
The man tased by cops was 62-year-old Thomas Bruso, who apparently was sitting in the wrong seat and was drinking alcohol. Police claimed that the man was not “complying” with attempts to arrest him so the crowd was cleared and he was tasered from behind.
Another man is seen being pushed down the stairs as the situation escalates.
“While the man is clearly uncooperative and perhaps belligerent, it is unclear why a shot of 50,000 volts was needed,” comments Constitutional lawyer Jonathan Turley.
As the incident unfolded an observer in the crowd commented, “C’mon, take it easy on him….I can’t believe you guys tased him.”
“This individual is not a small person,” said Ofc. Jeff Thomason. “He is 6-foot-1, 280 pounds, so getting in a fight with an individual like this is not in the officer’s best interest.”
However, as the video shows, the cops attempted to arrest the man for barely a minute before resorting to using the taser. The man was resisting arrest but he was not in a “fight” with the cops as Thomason implies.
This is not the first time that police have deployed a taser on someone for sitting in the wrong seat at a sports event.
In a far more disturbing case last year, Wisconsin police were caught on camera tasering a 54-year-old woman at a football game in Madison.
Margaret Hiebing, a veteran Badger season ticket holder, was ejected from the Camp Randall stadium during the Oct. 11 game against Penn State after she was found sitting in the wrong seat, reported WKOW 27 News.
Hiebing had taken a different seat because someone else had occupied her usual place at the packed game.
When police approached Mrs Hiebing she explained the situation and refused to leave. Onlookers began to berate the cops after one of them reportedly threatened Hiebing with pepper spray.
One witness filmed the altercation on a cell phone, evidence which would later dispel initial police claims that Hiebing was causing an obstruction by sitting in the aisle. Police then forced Hiebing face down on the ground and tased her on the back of the leg, confining her to a wheelchair because she was unable to walk out of the stadium.
Both these cases, and hundreds more that have occurred down the years, illustrate that the taser, far from being a cop’s last line of defense against a dangerous individual, is being used as a torture device for the purposes of pain compliance – merely forcing the victim to submit to the officer’s demands whether they pose a physical threat to the cop or not.
Watch both clips below, the first one being from the Orlando incident.