Monday, September 8, 2014

An issue that's hard to hide from: There will keep being reminders of the most recent driving-while-black incident

Hard to hide
The tendency at Murphy Hall is to let the process of investigation "work," and just wait for the lawsuit to arrive.  It's a police matter.  It's a legal matter.  But it's hard to hide from the issue when other folks keep reminding you of it.  The latest is this editorial in the Daily Bruin:

Claudius E. Gaines III, a black UCLA facilities employee, is alleging he was a victim of racial profiling during an arrest made by university police officers on Aug. 27. The facts are currently in dispute. Yet in spite of this, it would be foolish to brush off the magnitude of the allegations being made. Incidents of this kind can and should awaken the vigilance in protecting the constitutionally entrenched safeguards that are our civil rights as well as our commitment to combating the institutional structures that impede on those rights. In the wake of Gaines’ allegations of racial profiling, this board believes there is more to be done by the UCPD. The ways in which the UCPD has responded to similar incidents in the past speaks volumes about its unwillingness to even acknowledge that racial profiling is a problem. In July, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge David S. Cunningham III reached a $500,000 settlement with the University of California after filing an excessive force complaint against two UCPD officers when they pulled him over for a seat belt violation. He claimed the officers shoved him against the side of his car, handcuffed him and placed him in the backseat of the patrol car. The settlement includes continued training for UCPD officers on issues including “understanding diversity, bias, public engagement and the use of force.”  ...

Full editorial at

Wouldn't it be better for Murphy to get in front of this issue - as didn't happen in the Cunningham case?

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