Are police officers allowed to lie to you? Yes the Supreme Court has ruled that police officers can lie to the American people. Police officers are trained at lying, twisting words and being manipulative. Police officers and other law enforcement agents are very skilled at getting information from people. So don’t try to “out smart” a police officer and don’t try being a “smooth talker” because you will lose! If you can keep your mouth shut, you just might come out ahead more than you expected. CopsRCorrupt.com

Monday, September 7, 2015

Three prison guards brutally beat a mentally ill prisoner to death

By Mike Blasky Contra Costa Times


When Michael James Tyree was killed in a San Jose jail cell, his lifeless body found Aug. 27 battered and bruised after an encounter with correctional officers, there were no Twitter hashtags, no spontaneous street protests, no national news vans parked on the curb.




The rise of powerful civil rights movements such as Black Lives Matter -- and the deaths of Michael Brown, Freddie Gray and Eric Garner, all of whom were black -- have steered the national narrative around police force toward the systemic abuse of minority communities.


But the swift and shocking arrests of three Santa Clara County jail guards on suspicion of murder in the death of Tyree, who was white, signals that the heightened focus on police brutality will also raise awareness on a growing crisis confronting another often-ignored part of society -- the mentally ill in our country's jails and prisons.






"This may be a signal of how desperate the situation really is," said Michael Romano, director and co-founder of the Stanford Justice Advocacy Project, which partners with the NAACP to lobby for criminal justice reform.


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Advocates say the U.S. criminal justice system has failed the mentally ill for decades, treating people struggling with disease, addiction and estrangement from their families like criminals and valuing punishment and obedience more than treatment and rehabilitation.


Tyree, 31, battled for years with bipolar disorder and addiction, leaving behind a trail of broken relationships and a rap sheet that included low-level drug offenses and resisting arrest. He had been locked up in the Santa Clara County Main Jail waiting for a space to open in a court-ordered treatment facility when authorities say he was beaten on Aug. 26 in a confrontation with three jail guards. He was pronounced dead about an hour later.


The number of mentally ill inmates in California has almost doubled in the past 15 years, according to a Stanford study Romano co-authored, following a long trend favoring incarceration in the U.S. California had 20,000 prison inmates in 1971; there were 162,000 inmates by 2010, with about half suffering from some form of mental illness.


The staggering rise happened after the U.S. emptied out state hospitals in the 1950s, a social response to terrible conditions and harsh psychiatric treatments. California led the charge, and county jails became the largest mental institutions in the country, with the Los Angeles County jail one of the largest.


Local governments were supposed to establish robust community mental health facilities instead. But it never happened, said Martin Horn, a professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and a former New York City probation and jail commissioner.


Politicians instead largely diverted the money from mental hospitals to other projects. Officers often had no recourse except to take someone to jail, Horn said, but jails were never designed to be mental health facilities, where patients need a therapeutic environment to recover.


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Even people with little history of crime or mental illness can be driven to suicide by the depressing, harsh environment, with the case of Sandra Bland, a Texas woman authorities say hanged herself after being arrested on a minor charge, as a recent example.


"Jails were intended for people who can follow rules, and are in touch with reality, for people who can weigh the consequences of their behavior and act upon them," Horn said. "That's not the case for the mentally ill."


And jails aren't properly staffed with enough social workers, doctors and psychiatrists to manage the problems, according to Dr. E. Fuller Torrey, a Maryland research psychiatrist who founded the Treatment Advocacy Center, a national nonprofit to advocate for the mentally ill.


"They're not trained to deal with mentally ill people, they (guards) might not know a whole lot about them," Torrey said. "And in some cases they might be annoyed by the behavior or even scared by them. ... It's a very toxic situation that in some cases is going to turn out very badly."


Torrey said abused inmates and their families across the U.S. have been suing jails for years, often settling with counties out of court for large sums.


But arresting and prosecuting jail guards is almost unheard of, he said, and might be a signal that local authorities are more emboldened by protest movements to investigate and hold their own officers accountable, said Torrey, who has toured jails in 20 states and published more than a dozen books on mental illness.


Related article: DIED in CUSTODY: Man jailed since April for alleged $5 theft found dead in cell


John Burris, the Bay Area's most notable civil rights lawyer, said he has taken many jail beating cases to civil court over the years. His office still gets at least a few requests from inmates or their families every week, but the cases are difficult to prove because of a lack of credible witnesses.


"(Jail) officers for years have gotten a clear walk, a clear passage, without any concern of a prosecution," Burris said. "If this is a deterrent on future conduct, in that sense, I'm glad to see it."


The tide also could be slowly turning in favor of the mentally ill as governments look for a more progressive path, according to Romano.


Jails have a responsibility to interrupt the cycle of addiction, crime and illness, he said. Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen, for example, was one of two DAs in the state to support Proposition 47 last year and Proposition 36 in 2012, which reduced penalties for drug offenses and nonviolent crimes, respectively. Fixing the system will require the public to support the community health facilities intended after mental hospitals closed, Romano said. It costs more money to house people in those facilities, but keeping the status quo does nothing to interrupt the cycle of mental illness, addiction and crime.


Romano said no one wants more dangerous people on the streets.


"We're not saying treat people with kid gloves," he said, "but if we ignore mentally ill prisoners without treating them, we're just making it worse and a bigger cost to public safety."




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