No Accountability in Alabama #CultOfCompliance Case

Sureshbahi Patel was beaten by an Alabama police officer for, as near as I can tell, not speaking English. I like to think of this as akin to other situations in which people do not process verbal commands – whether through hearing loss, not speaking English, ear buds, sensory processing, etc.

The man who beat Patel and sent him to the hospital is not going to be held accountable in Federal court.

Judge Madeline Hughes Haikala just threw out the case against Madison police officer Eric Parker, who faced up to 10 years in prison for excessive force in the sidewalk stop of an Indian citizen.
Judge Haikala late Wednesday filed a 92-page opinion, ending with: “The Government has had two full and fair chances to obtain a conviction; it will not have another.”
A team of three federal prosecutors had twice tried Parker last year for the takedown of 57-year-old Sureshbahi Patel on the morning of Feb. 6, 2015. Both trials ended with a deadlocked jury.

Here’s Parker’s defense:

Parker twice testified that he lost his balance and fell. He also testified that Patel repeatedly jerked his hand away from Parker. “It concerned me that he was going for that weapon I presumed he had,” testified Parker.

Patel, who had just arrived from India to help care for his grandson, testified he does not speak English and did not resist. “I did not try to run away but I did go back a couple of steps to show them my house, my house,” testified Patel through an interpreter at the second trial. “They put their hands on me and I was just standing and did not move.”

There’s video. But juries want to believe cops, or want to believe it’s ok to beat up non-compliant brown people, or something.

Look at all the maybes – Parker imagined that Patel was going for a weapon that Parker imagined Patel had.  And so put him in the hospital.

Without accountability, there is no peace.

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