The city of Oakland, California has been issued an ultimatum by a federal judge: either figure out a way to handle the flood of complaints against the police or start being sanctioned.
District Judge Thelton Henderson has demanded that officials in the Bay Area city start determining this week how to deal with the abundance of accusatory statements filed with Oakland authorities, specifically citing the flood of complaints that have come in over how law enforcement conducted themselves during raids on the city’s Occupy Wall Street protests. In a decision made this week, Judge Henderson says that the Oakland Police Department must submit their proposal on how to handle the grievances within the next week or else be sanctioned by federal authorities.
Calling into question the police department’s documented mishandling of protesters demonstrating there under the OWS umbrella, Judge Henderson says that cops have time and time again resorted to “an overwhelming military-type response” when conducting crowd control during a series of events in recent month that have become especially commonplace since the Occupy movement began last fall.
In October during the dawn of the Occupy protests, Iraq War veteran Scott Olsen suffered a fractured skull after being hit by a non-lethal projectile fired by Oakland police. The incident caused outrage across America among protesters and non-demonstrators alike, as well as other vets that felt degraded by the same country they took an oath to protect.
“I knew that I wasn’t the only person that felt that way,” Marine Jay C. Gentile explained to RT after hearing of Olsen’s injuries. “There are just honestly no words to express the bond that Marines feel for each other. This goes across the service, but it’s very specific for the Marines.”
Judge Henderson’s mandate also formally marks for the first time that an official force has deemed Olsen’s injury to stem directly from a law enforcement weapon. Only weeks after that incident, a fellow US vet, 32-year-old Kayvan Sabehgi, was checked into intensive care for a lacerated spleen injury he says he incurred at the hands of the Oakland PD.