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A Culture Of Police Brutality

Since it’s a day that ends in “day”, we have another cop brutalizing another member of the community he’s supposed to be serving and protecting. This one is a slight variation on the theme we’ve grown completely accustomed to in that, the cop is a black male and the victim is a tiny white woman. This incident happened in Miami in 2013, but we just got the video and “justice” yesterday.

Let me start with what happened. In the early evening of June 26th 2013, the police get a call from the South Bay Club, who had a drunk woman (Megan Adamescu) who wouldn’t leave in their lobby. Enter officer Philippe Archer, who responded in plain clothes. He takes the woman outside and tried to get her to give him her ID. She was apparently too drunk to comprehend what was going on, so he took her purse and started looking for ID. That’s when fifty year old Andrew Mossberg happened to be walking by. He thought he was witnessing a mugging so he called the police. Here are his words from an article in the Miami New Times;

“I saw him grab her purse and pull things out of it. When she tried to grab the bag back, he punched her in the face. She fell down, got up, and tried to go for her purse again. He then kicked her legs from underneath her so she would fall down again.”

Mossberg……alleges Archer was not wearing a police badge or any other ID. So Mossberg called the Miami Beach Police nonemergency number and asked the dispatcher to send units over. “I yelled at him that the police are on their way,” Mossberg says. “That’s when he ran at me, kicked me once in the left side of the head, then kicked me again in the forehead, and punched me twice.”

Okay, so this a fifty year old man who is trying to do the right thing when he sees what he believes to be a crime being committed. Here’s the cop’s version of events (from the report he filed);

Adamescu yelled “fuck you nigger,” “became hostile and belligerent,” and that she “attempted to snatch her passport out of my hands.” Archer alleges he got distracted when Mossberg approached him. That’s when Adamescu “slapped me on the left side of the face, knowing that I was a law enforcement officer. I immediately countered with an open hand strike to [the] right side of her face causing her to fall to the ground and hit the back of her head,” Archer wrote.

That’s when Mossberg charged me, preparing to attack me. I conducted a front kick to his abdomen area, causing him to step back. [Mossberg] became enraged and came back at me. So Archer says he kicked Mossberg in the face. “During the violent and physical confrontation, [Mossberg] sustained a laceration to the right side of his head, a left swollen face cheek, and scratches about his arms,” Archer wrote.

As far as I can tell, the cops own original account doesn’t indicate that he identified himself as a police officer to Mossberg. I don’t know if he subsequently made that claim, but it doesn’t matter (you’ll see why later).

That report did leave out some punching and kicking that he did to both Adamescu and Mossberg (of course it did).

So Archer takes both Adamescu and Mossberg to the precinct, where this happens in the parking garage;

Before some of you say that she kicked him (and what a forceful kick it was), so he was justified in what he did, it’s picture time.

This is officer Philippe Archer:  









This is Andrew Mossberg:









This is what Mossberg looked like after Philippe fended off the obvious threat to his life:









You could clearly see Megan Adamescu’s size relative to Archer’s in the video. Here’s what she looked like after he punched her:









So you decide if the cop was justified in his actions, given the threat level these two posed to him. He had another detective take a picture of himself with Amamescu in her bandaged state, where he’s grinning from ear to ear. That photo hasn’t been published anywhere, but doesn’t he sound charming?

Did I mention that Archer has been accused of police brutality at least three times prior to this? I couldn’t tell you how many times because, while cops have the ability to run your record in a few seconds to see everything you’ve ever been charged with, we don’t get to easily access their performance records. I do know that when this incident took place, but I do know that the good citizens if Miami had just paid out $60,000 to settle one claim against Archer who didn’t appear to have been punished at all.

There was an internal investigation that concluded that Archer was guilty of excessive use of force. Here’s what the Miami Herald said about the report;

“Your experience, knowledge of rules, policies and proper practice dictates that you knew you should have reported and documented the events at the police station, you knew that taking a photo with a prisoner was inappropriate, you knew you should have properly secured the prisoners, and you knew you used excessive force,” states the report. “Your lack of judgment and your poor decisions defy your tenure as a Miami Beach Police Officer of 19 years.”

The report continues: “You met this slight woman’s meager schoolyard kick with excessive, unnecessary, and unwarranted use of force.”

The good news is that Archer is facing swift and severe punishment for his brutal beating of two people who posed no threat whatsoever to him. That’s not true, he’s technically only been found guilty of punching Adamescu, since that’s all we have video evidence of. There’s no video of what he did to Mossberg. No video means nothing untoward happened, right? He’s being suspended for a month without pay. Harsh. I know, right? But don’t worry, he won’t have to lose that pay for a whole month in a row. He’s going to take several long weekends from May – July so that he’s only missing a few hundred dollars out of several paychecks, instead of getting no paycheck at all for a month. WHEW! My heart was starting to bleed for him, thinking about the hardship he was facing. It looks like the poor bastard may make it through after all.

Does any of this sound like  it’s going to serve as a deterrent to the next cop with anger management issues?  This asshole has kept his job through lord knows how many excessive force complaints, at least one settlement over his brutality and now this. This incident is going to settle for a much higher amount because he was found guilty of excessive force. That’s just going to help the plaintiffs in their civil suits. And to be clear, he didn’t get fired because he’s been on the force for nineteen years. Being fired means losing his pension, when he’s one year away from being eligible to retire. There was no way his union was going to let that happen. See, the longer a bad cop is serving on a force for, the harder the union is going to fight to get him to that retirement finish line. By year twelve or so, a shitty cop is almost entire unfireable.

There is a cultural problem with out police forces all across the country. There is no deterrent mechanism for violence and brutality. If I were a sociopath with sadistic tendencies , I would be signing up for the police academy. I’m not kidding. This is the place for me to act out my issues with impunity and no fear of punishment. Each time one of these cops gets away with these killings or beatings, they make very other cop confident in the knowledge that they can do whatever the fuck they want without fear of retribution.

None of those cops in the garage reported the punch that was recorded on the video. How many “good cops” does that leave us with? And why fucking bother? Seriously, why bother being a good cop? Obviously, you can’t report a fellow officer punching the shit out of a twig on two legs because that isn’t something cops do. Even if you did, that cop will suffer virtually no punishment, so why bother?

The abuse by cops is always doled out on members of society who they deem to be powerless. This is why it’s predominantly people of color who are getting killed and beaten. This doesn’t happen in Beverly Hills or the Upper East Side of Manhattan where people have power. We know about the affluenza sufferers in these neighborhoods, so it’s really not like there aren’t any miscreants to beat the fuck out of. It’s just that miscreants in Beverly Hills come with high priced attorneys. Beating the shit out of, or murdering them would be a career ender. But shooting Tamir Rice, that has no consequences. That motherfucker hasn’t faced a single charge yet because he chose his victim wisely.

People keep saying there are lots of good cops out there. I think that’s true. It’s just that all the “good cops” are patrolling affluent neighborhoods where the incentives don’t allow for beating and killing members of those neighborhoods. I’ve said this several times; I have a bias against cops. My bias comes from each new video I see of a cop behaving viciously toward someone who is unarmed (both physically and societally) and powerless to stop them.

There are no good cops in poor neighborhoods. There just aren’t. We’d see more news stories of cops being retaliated against for reporting their psychopathic co-workers if there were good cops in bad neighborhoods.

I’m forced to conclude that the only good cops in America work in upper middle class or affluent neighborhoods. Is that true? Perhaps not but I can’t tell, what with all the secrecy within the police departments. Is it fair? You’re goddamned right it is. Every single time this happens, it’s fair to conclude that cops are the problem.

I’ve said this before; I know where my bias comes from. Where does the bias on the other side come from?


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