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There is probably more to the story, and reading some of the linked article and following some of those links there is even more to the story.

Can you say "impaired judgement"?
Sano apparently admitted he had been drinking,
Note to self, find tazer proof clothing
The officers attempted to Taser Sano, but it was ineffective because of Sano’s clothing.
Still seems a bit harsh to forcibly jerk someone off of their bicycle just for not having a headlight.

I think I'll sidestep out of this thread now since it has the potential to get really heated really fast. "Don't tazer me bro."
 

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TheMane said:
If I have to judge on only what was written then... sorry, I am not completely buying the story. Only because he had a prior cycling related altercation with a cop that almost landed him 2.5 years in jail.

These cops were in uniform... I suspect he knew who they were. After he realized they were cops then he shouldn't have gotten in a "defensive position." If you get ready to fight a cop, you can't get pissed when they tase you.

I know I am going to get flamed for this, but this guys prior on his bike sealed the deal for me. "In that case, Sano was charged with several misdemeanors (including Criminal Mischief and Disorderly Conduct) and faced 2 1/2 years in jail." How do you end up facing 2.5 years in jail for a small biking altercation? :confused:
 

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It may seem a bit harsh to forcibly jerk someone off of their bicycle, slam them around, then taser them multiple times just for not having a headlight, but not when you consider that it's all for their own safety! Without a headlight, they could hurt!
 

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After looking at this guy, I would have shot him.
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Kestreljr said:
How do you end up facing 2.5 years in jail for a small biking altercation? :confused:
Yeah, I noticed this as well... however the article states that the case was dropped against him. I know police officers are only human, but they really should be above holding a grudge.

I think what angers people about these situations is how the taser is treated as a first-resort compliance device. Surely the officers could have easily overpowered him without electrocuting him? Were they in that much danger?

..but of course I wasn't there, so I'm only guessing.
 

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TheMane said:
I know police officers are only human, but they really should be above holding a grudge.
holding a grudge? It never said that the officers that arrested him a day ago were at all related to the first case that almost landed him in jail for 2.5 years... I don't understand who was holding a grudge?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
wim said:
No one was electrocuted. I know it's just words and such, but careless use can heat up a debate needlessly. :)
Ah, you are correct. I change my statement to "Surely the officers could have overpowered him without passing a pulse-current through his body to force his muscles to lock up."

Kestreljr said:
holding a grudge? It never said that the officers that arrested him a day ago were at all related to the first case that almost landed him in jail for 2.5 years... I don't understand who was holding a grudge?
Only meant that statement in response to you basing your previous post on a dropped case against the guy. Not flaming you or claiming the cops have a grudge. Just saying that the previous incident wouldn't really justify this.

Seriously, I'm not defending the guy or the police officers involved. I have no idea what actually happened. I just picture being thrown off my bike and tasered and it's an ugly image in my head.
 

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The problem is that there is a witness who essentially corroborates his story. Maybe not a completely impartial witness, because she had also been stopped by the same police for not having a headlight. Nevertheless, she is a witness who saw the whole thing. When the risks of riding without a headlight are not nearly as great as the risks of the Portland police stopping you for not riding with a headlight, something is out of whack.

Also, the thing about judging his character because he faced 2 1/2 years in jail is comical and absolutely meaningless. First, it says they charged him, but nothing about whether they convicted him of anything. Second, I'm sure the 2 1/2 years was the max sentence possible, and the chance of him serving the max is slim to none. What kind of time do you face if you get a DUI? How many people ever serve it?
 

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mohair_chair said:
The problem is that there is a witness who essentially corroborates his story.
You bring up some good points, the thing about it is- you don't run from cops, and you don't challenge cops IME. If you do, then you face the consequences. That doesn't mean you have to die- but you might get your butt handed to you.

If a cop tells you to stop, you stop. If you disobey that order, regardless of the original violation, the cops track you down. Everyone knows that countless criminals have been caught for a brake light out, or the similar.

If this guy doesn't have the judgment to know that two cops in uniform, who walked across the street from their patrol car that had flashing lights on, were in fact cops, then the bikers poor judgment lead to this and will lead to many problems for him in the future.
 

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TheMane said:
I have no idea what actually happened. I just picture being thrown off my bike and tasered and it's an ugly image in my head.
Yeah... plus there are some difference in the story from the biker and the cops. The cops say the taser didn't work. The biker says that he pissed himself from the horrible electrocution. :confused:
 

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I mostly agree. I also think this guy is a punk who was probably asking for good smack down, but come on, two cops against a hipster? How hard could it be? I would rather he get his smack down from a concerned citizen than two cops.
 

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I will say this...knowing my brother who is an officer...he will tell you that most cops love it when you run because it gives them "cart Blanche" to beat the crap out of you, tazer you, etc.

Many cops (not all) have a background of aggression....quite simply because in their position you have to be aggressive to defend yourself and others, and some have a hard time turning that off...my brother being one of them (has been disciplined many times for being overly aggressive).

Here are the basics with this scenario:

Did he break the law? Yes...he was riding at night without a headlight.

Did he run from the law? Debatable. It was at night, officers wear dark blue uniforms that are not easily identifiable at night when away from their vehicle.

I know if some big guy comes running at me yelling and I don't immediately identify him as an officer...I'm going to accelerate to avoid an altercation...With as many people that are getting beat up on the MAX around here...it's just prudent to do so.

Did the punishment fit the crime? No.

Was their a coberating witness for the cyclist? Yes........For the police? No (other than fellow officers who "ALWAYS" protect their own)

Will the officers be disciplined for excessive use of force? Highly doubtful. In Portland it seems to be encouraged rather than discouraged...The officers are more likely to be commended than disciplined.

Will the cyclist be charged, fined and convicted? Most likely on all accounts.

Do the prior run in's with the law matter? To some people yes, but reality is no. People should not convict others on what they have done in the past, but what they are doing currently...flame away if you like...but that's how the law works. Only when in court does that come into play, well that and when performing crime checks for jobs.

Anyway...Portland Police have a history of being overly aggressive and at this point I have to believe it's part of their training. Subdue everybody first then ask questions seems to be the motto...and in many ways I see their point. Does it make it right? Nope, but it is what it is.
 

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I think what angers people about these situations is how the taser is treated as a first-resort compliance device. Surely the officers could have easily overpowered him without electrocuting him? Were they in that much danger?

When someone takes a position that can be interpreted as a 'fighting stance', a Taser actually becomes pretty close to a 'first-resort compliance device'. At a time such as that, the only other reasonable option is pepper spray. The effects of pepper spray linger much longer than a Taser. While getting shot with a Taser looks really bad and feels worse, I personally would rather get hit with that than pepper spray.

Additionally, the suspect claims to have been shot in the lower back (rear of his body) and chest (front of his body). A Taser doesn't work that way. When deployed, one prong fires in a straight line and the other is angled down slightly. If he was shot in the chest, the other prong would have hit him in the stomach- not the lower back. It's ironic that the article contained a photo of a penetration of one of the prongs but not the other penetration. Even if he were 'touch stunned', there would have been a mark.

TheMane asks "Were they in that much danger?" The article makes no mention of where the suspect's hands were during this confrontation. If he had them in his pockets, behind his back, etc, you don't know if he's reaching for a knife, gun, or other weapon. Let me ask you this- given 2 choices- 1- jumping at this guy who's agitated and being confrontational- possibly reaching for a weapon (again, not knowing where his hands were)- risking getting killed, or 2- shooting this idiot with a Taser- which would you do?
 

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Wookiebiker said:
Do the prior run in's with the law matter? To some people yes, but reality is no. People should not convict others on what they have done in the past, but what they are doing currently..
I don't understand how you are supposed to judge someone if you cannot look at their past as part of the equation? Don't criminal records matter? Doesn't this board tell cyclist that are harrassed by cars to "get the plates and report it to the police" thinking that one day this car might hurt a cyclist, so with reporting harassment, maybe cops can see a record of bad behavior?

This guy is an ordained minister, and very involved in public philanthropy efforts... that is good for his character.

This guy also was biking in the nude, and did something to a cop that slapped him with several misdemeanors... that is bad for the case at hand.
 
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