Thursday, September 20, 2007

American Student Gets Tasered

On September 17, 2007, U.S. Senator John Kerry, addressed a forum at the University of Florida. Towards the end of the question and answer period, University police forcibly removed Andrew Meyer, a 21-year-old fourth-year undergraduate telecommunications student, from the forum, restraining him with the help of a Taser.

Meyer from University of Florida was in line to ask a question of Senator Kerry when it was announced that no more questions would be taken. According to police, "Meyer continued down the aisle toward Kerry angrily", asking to be permitted to ask a question. Meyer was allowed to ask a single question, which, according to the Washington Post, turned into "an increasingly agitated three-parter."

Why did Kerry concede the United States presidential election, 2004 before results were tallied and despite allegations of election irregularities?
Why doesn't Kerry support the Movement to impeach George W. Bush?
Were Kerry and Bush both members of the Yale University secret society known as Skull and Bones?
After Mayer's alloted time was up, the microphone into which Meyer had been speaking was cut off. He continued to shout his questions at Kerry. Four University of Florida police officers seized him; some members of the crowd then applauded. Kerry said, "That's all right, let me answer his question." The student struggled for several seconds and demanded an explanation of the officers' conduct. He shouted several times "Help!", "What have I done?" and "Get away from me!", with his arms raised in the air. All four officers began forcibly ushering him to the back of the room as Meyer attempted to stand his ground. During this time, some audience members shouted phrases such as "What has he done?", "Why are you doing this?", and "Let him go!". Once in the rear of the hall, Meyer attempted again to break away from the officers. The officers wrestled him to the ground and attempted to handcuff him.

As Meyer pleaded with the officers from the ground and continued to struggle, they threatened to taser him. Meyer stated that if allowed up, he would leave. Meyer yelled, "Don't tase me bro, don't tase me", but was drive stunned in the shoulder by officer Nicole Lynn Mallo with her department-issued X-26 Taser shortly after. He continued screaming for help as the officers removed him from the room. During the altercation, Kerry urged everyone to calm down, made a joke and kept speaking to Meyer's question, which he referred to as "very important". He later released a statement saying that he was unaware that any Tasing had occurred until afterwards. Meyer was then escorted off the premises and detained overnight in the Alachua County Jail. Some students protested outside the jail that evening.
Somehow i think Meyer had it comin'.

When security personnel swamped in on him, he should have done the following:
1. Stop yelling
2. Go quietly with them out of the hall

He shouldn't have done the following:
1. React violently
2. Resist arrest

If Meyer had not behaved in an unruly fashion like he did in the video, he probably would not have been pinned down on the floor and tasered. But nonetheless, I also think the security personnel had indeed exercised excessive force on him.


Blogger Smarty Pants said...

"He shouldn't have done the following:
1. React violently
2. Resist arrest"
A good reason why you should never do this when you are facing police officer with guns or taser.

Anyway I think the security personnel is doing the right thing. The moment they cut off the microphone that he is holding the authorities know that Meyer is reacting violently.

Friday, September 21, 2007 at 10:23:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Mockingbird said...

To Smarty Pants: I still think using a taser on a defenceless chap like Andrew Meyer is a tad too much even though he inadvertently asked for it :p Sounds ironical, i know :p

Monday, September 24, 2007 at 10:37:00 AM GMT+8  
Blogger Smarty Pants said...

"I still think using a taser on a defenceless chap like Andrew Meyer is a tad too much"
He maybe defenceless but Meyer could just use his fist to whack somebody maybe he will punch the Senator just like that Taxi driver who punch one of our MP's.

Then again he ask for it. :p

Monday, September 24, 2007 at 11:19:00 AM GMT+8  
Blogger Mockingbird said...

You're right. He could have punched somebody. But from the video, he wasn't seen approaching the stage. He only asked Senator Kerry some pointed questions in a very hostile manner. i'm just wondering who would end up in deeper shit because of this incident. Meyer or the security officer who tasered him?

Monday, September 24, 2007 at 12:04:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Smarty Pants said...

Maybe Meyer should stop yelling when the security personnel start to swamped on him instead of resisting arrest and react violently.

For that officer who tasered him could just get a warning or maybe praised for his action?

Some officer are trigger happy.

Monday, September 24, 2007 at 10:18:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Mockingbird said...

Yes. Meyer should have stopped yelling when the security personnel started to move in on him.

Think the officer who tasered him might get into some deep shit if Meyer succeeds in pressing for charges of causing bodily harm against him.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007 at 11:44:00 AM GMT+8  
Blogger JOEPSC said...

Whatever the reason/s for Meyer's noisy behaviour, he should first stop struggling and leave peacefully as ordered, and lodge his grievance later on. By making a scene gives an officer a right to use appropriate force there and then.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007 at 4:04:00 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Mockingbird said...

To Joepsc: Exactly my sentiments too :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2007 at 4:24:00 PM GMT+8  

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