Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Worst headline of the day award

Goes to Matt Drudge for headlining this story as follows:
Deputy Uses Taser on Fleeing Bicyclist; riding at night without proper lighting...
Pretty sensational. Most readers might get the mental image of some poor nerdy guy being harassed for a light out on his bicycle then tased for good measure.

Here's how the police described the event:
After a half-block chase and several warnings from Smith that he would use the Taser, he did... He added that deputies don't deploy Tasers against subjects who are driving or riding a bike because of the risk factor.
So he wasn't on the bike when they blasted him, he was on foot running. That's not all:
Rivera was transported to Glenn Medical Center, where he was cleared for booking into the Glenn County Jail on suspicion of resisting arrest, riding a bicycle without proper lighting, riding under the influence of alcohol and use of false citizenship/government documents.
In other words, he was most likely an intoxicated illegal alien who ran from police when they tried to stop him over a minor infraction that would have at most produced a ticket and in the least, a warning.

The question can be asked about why police are stopping people for bicycle infractions. Maybe they stopped him because they suspected he was drunk, or an illegal, but to suggest via headline that the man was tased for not having a working headlight is ridiculous. He was tased for running from the police.

No comments: