Brutal Assault Over Seatbelt “Violation”

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HAMMOND, IN — After witnessing a motorist allegedly not wearing a seatbelt, police escalated to the point of shattering a window to extract a passenger when he claimed not to have an ID.

“Oh my God, he’s pulling me over like I robbed a bank,” recalled Lisa Mahone, the driver and alleged seatbelt violator. “The whole situation was just crazy.”

Ms. Mahone was riding with her boyfriend and 2 children to the hospital to see her mother, who was literally on her deathbed.

“I gave him my license and insurance. I also let him know at the beginning to please hurry up because my mom is about to die,” Ms. Mahone said.

Hammond Police, fishing for more offenses, demanded that her adult passenger, Jamal Jones, produce an identification. Mr. Jones initially declined to provide an identification, but when officers continued to insist, he opened up his backpack to look for one.

That’s when police drew their guns.

Hammond police officers shatter the window of a vehicle driven by  Lisa Mahone after her boyfriend was viewed not wearing a seatbelt. (Source: FOX 32 Chicago)

Mr. Jones requested a supervisor, and Ms. Mahone dialed 9-1-1 to describe the situation and request the same.

“I am scared. And the man–pulled a gun out. A gun! Why do my kids have to see that,” Mahone told the 9-1-1 operator.

Mr. Jones expressed reluctance to get out of the vehicle due to the officers’ aggressiveness and mentioned that “People are getting shot by the police.”

“You all got a white shirt?” Jones asked, referring to the supervisor the family had been requesting. The officer responded, “Look at my shoulder, dumbass. I got bars.”

“You’re going to come out of the car one way or another,” the officer menaced. “You want your kids to see you come out through the window?”

Shortly thereafter, the HPD officers rammed a metal object through the passenger window and began to jolt Mr. Jones with a taser. Jones was yanked from of the vehicle, and Ms. Mahone and her children were showered in shards of broken glass.

See footage of the disturbing extraction via FOX-32 Chicago:

FOX 32 News Chicago

Mr. Jones was criminally charged with “resisting law enforcement” and “refusal to aid an officer.” Ms. Mahone immediately filed a complaint and the couple has since filed a federal lawsuit.

Needless to say, the Hammond Police Department is standing by the actions of its officers, and described it as “reasonable.”

Part of the urgency for punishing the seemingly mundane offense may have been related to Hammond’s participation in the federal “Click-it or Ticket” campaign, a program in which the department rakes in federal grant money in exchange for promising to harass motorists about wearing seatbelts. The grants are doled out annually to departments across the country from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

The Hammond Police Department has been mired in controversy recently after several uses of excessive force. Additionally, there is a federal lawsuit pending after an HPD officer crashed a family cookout and shot a family pet in the face while inside its own yard, secured by an electric fence. In yet another recent incident, an officer was filmed whipping an HPD K-9 and lifting off the ground it by its leash. Both officers were supported by department officials and faced no consequences.

FOX-32 reported that one of the officers that assaulted Mr. Jones had been involved in two excessive force complaints that resulted in cash settlements.

Only citizen activism can create the pressure necessary to stop the unaccountable, abusive behavior displayed by the Hammond Police Department, as well as the federal grants that subsidize their bad behavior.

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17 COMMENTS

  1. Has anyone ever noticed that while tiny Malum prohibitum offenses can often be brutally and even fatally enforced with a kind of insane zealotry and untiring laser focus, most Malum in se transgressions involving real victims and real harm rarely merit their attention? Their motto should really be “to serve and protect the financial and other interests of the state.”

    • Eric,

      You must realize someone might get hurt if they do not wear a seat belt. Case on point — see above story. 😉

      I must be dumb since I have difficulty understanding the uneven handling of relatively minor “ticky-tack” violations of the law by those who are suppose to “serve and protect”. If someone is going to get that type of reaction for such a minor offense, then they might as well do something worth the beatdown.

      • Yup!

        It’s insane. Literally batshit crazy.

        Woman and male companion are assaulted by armed men … for not wearing a seatbelt … because it’s not “safe” to drive unbuckled.

        • My brother in law (who doesn’t understand freedom apparently) once took issue with my stance against Statute law and play acted out:

          Standing menacingly close, he gruffed. “What are ya gonna do against a big nasty cop with a gun?”

          “Well, the Civil court won’t look kindly on an officer threatening weapons violence against an unarmed civilian without probable cause, and will likely strip you of your job and award compensation..”

          He didn’t have much to say after that, except he still comes up with the occasional quip that I’m doing “illegal” things, such as travel in my private conveyance without a licence and registration. Must be jealous.

          People like this simply don’t want to know how it’s done, or why for that matter.

          I think more average sheeples are starting to wake up to police violence thanks to youtube and the fact that cops seem to be doing it more frequently, before it becomes the accepted norm. Unfortunately, If anything we need them to do much more of it sooner, so the rest of the sheeples wake up and hopefully, the situation USSA-wide is resolved.

          I’m always ready for a beatdown, but cops in this country very rarely engage in that crap. Most of them are still somewhat civilised robots.

      • It’s the system working as designed. Tyranny over little things, while the insiders get away with massive crimes. It’s good conditioning for most people.

        If people do start doing things worthy of the punishments it only gives the excuse to crack down.

  2. I live in one of the towns just south of Hammond. The Hammond police have been very aggressive and out of control lately. I recently had one of their officers follow me for miles . He would match all my turns, even following me onto the expressway, which they aren’t supposed to be “patrolling” at all (state police turf). Basically tailgating me the whole way, since I wasn’t speeding……….

    I knew he was back there and I went out of my way to give him no reason to pull me over (using turn signals, not speeding, coming to complete stops etc). I was sure he was going to pull me over when he followed me across the bridge into my community (unfortunately police in Indiana have police powers state wide believe it or not!).

    I was waiting for the inevitable lighting of the gum-ball lights. He followed me another block, but all of sudden made a quick illegal u-turn, cutting a number of other people off, and beating a quick retreat back to Hammond. I watched him go, and he took off like a bat out of h*ll.

    Don’t know if a call came in and saved me from a confrontation with this cop or not, or if he feared a possible confrontation with my town’s police since he was on their turf (there is bad blood between the departments, surprise, surprise). You know I would have called my own towns department had he pulled me over.

    I don’t know if you are aware of the guy who made a tasteless joke about Hammond police needing be the “third cop” killed in the area. Two cops were murdered in the area this summer (one Gary, the other from Merrillville). He posted it on facebook and it was noticed. It cost him his job as a manager of a quick oil joint. The oil joint now has a sign saying how they support police, hmmmmmm. Hammond police noticed he was out on bond for something and pulled him over and revoked it. So now he is jobless and in the county jail. So much for your first amendment rights………………

    Hammond taxpayers are hosed……….

    • Events are picking up speed. It is dawning on middle America that “law enforcement” is out of control; that any cop they encounter could be the person who ruins, even ends, their life. And that they are powerless (insofar as the law is concerned) to do anything about it.

      In a way, this is just desserts. For a long time, middle America ignored/excused the abuse of lower class (esp. black) people by cops. Hey, it’s just some nigger…. right?

      Now we’re all niggers.

      • We’re indigs now. Just the indigenous population of an occupied territory.

        It appears that mainstream america, now becoming aware that what they ridiculed us kooks for warning has come to pass are going to do nothing about it except make excuses why it is neccesscary. As usual. First we are paranoid conspiracy theorists then we are bad for opposing something that’s needed. How do these people manage these thought patterns without ending up like NOMAD?

      • The worst thing about this traffic enforcement at all costs, is that Hammond has some pockets of very high crime.

        To be perfectly frank, they have much bigger fish to fry then motorists maybe “breaking” some traffic laws. There was an apartment complex that had SIX murders in a period of a year. I would say that would be far more important use of police resources (I think maybe one was solved??) then harassing drivers…………

        Nope, they spend their time ticketing new residents that moved across the border from Illinois but haven’t gotten the chance to get Indiana plates yet.

    • Rich, he knew you were essentially home and he was annoyed he didn’t get you on anything. I’ve been followed like that numerous times. When I lived in an apartment complex off an arterial road as soon as I turned in the cops instead of following me into the parking lot would do hard U-turn and nail the accelerator coming out of it. I’m talking wheel spin, tire noise, the whole 9 yards heading back to where I picked up the tail.

      • Everyone has been tailed by a cop at some point. What was creepy about this particular time was that he was tailgating me (which was making me hot at the collar) and the fact he followed me for nearly 8 miles in an urban area! Didn’t he have better things he could be doing, then following some WASP in a decent car? It doesn’t help that Hammond squads have those heavy steel push bars on them as well, as I was sure he was going to damage my decent car.

        Hammond has police districts and he followed me over 4 of them (most cars are marked with what district they are from). One of my friends later said, the reason why he probably didn’t stop you was the fact that he was nowhere near the area he was supposed to be patrolling. His bosses would have been questioning why he was pulling someone over in a neighboring community nowhere near his patrol area. It would explain why he went like a bat out of h*ll back to his turf too.

  3. At least these stories are getting some traction in the MSM, this video was on the CBS national news this evening. Speaking strictly for myself I’d administer some street judtice if one of these HPD ratbastards ever shot one of my pets; like the old Candid Camera tag line: somewhere, when you least expect it…..

    • One logical – and now vitally necessary – reform that would help to deal with this major problem would be to resurrect the legal doctrine that one is entitled to defend oneself against police abuse.

      One is not obligated to accept a punch in the face by an ordinary citizen.

      Why in the world should one be obliged to accept the same assault by someone wearing a uniform?

      It is insane – intolerable – that we are told we may never raise a hand against a cop, even in justifiable cases of self-defense.

  4. Ah, but what if this were a car filled with spammers?

    Wouldn’t it be nice if “Operation Spam Sandwich” were to be launched, and every spammer was apprehended and taken into custody?

    Of course intellectually, we profess that we only wish a free hand to deal with spammers directly as individuals. But the state survives because it does tend to do some things that benefit us, when it needs to.

    If only the state would reduce itself back to 1970 levels, and still launch the Spammer Eradication mission. Wouldn’t that be ideal?

    • Public beatings would be a good start.

      Spammers are cockroaches. They invade your “home” and help themselves to your stuff – or try to.

      FAFEFH

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