Showing posts with label Dallas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dallas. Show all posts

November 8, 2018

Transgender Woman is Made to Show Her Genitals by Dallas Sheriff Officers To Prove The Point

Valerie Jackson says she was subjected to humiliation and emotional pain after Dallas County officials refused to house her with the women on three separate occasions in less than two years.
Jackson, 32, who legally changed her gender to female, was first arrested in November 2016 for having a gun in her bag at a Dallas airport. She claims the officers gave her a hard time after she explained that she didn’t have a menstrual cycle because she is transgender.
“Did you have a sex change or something?” an unidentified officer asked her at the time, according to the suit. When she replied that she had, the officials ordered her to show her genitals in order for them to decide where to house her, which she says she repeatedly declined to do.
“We need to know if you’ve had a sex change or not. We need to see if you have a penis or a vagina. We have to protect you,” an officer allegedly said. “We can’t put you with men if you have a vagina.”
She ultimately obliged after repeated orders from the officers, causing her “severe distress,” the suit claims, and she was then housed with the men.
“Ms. Jackson was then placed in her own cell, where the male inmates began questioning her through the cell door,” reads an excerpt from the lawsuit, which was filed Friday in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas. “They were asking her if she was a ‘tranny’ or a ‘real girl’, telling her all the sexual things they wanted to do to her, grabbing themselves, calling her a ‘he/she,’ and calling her many other derogatory words.”
Lew Sterrett Justice Center is pictured with the Dallas skyline behind it in an undated image.Jackson was released shortly after, but was re-arrested in April 2017 and placed again with the male inmates despite her contending she belonged with the female inmates. Officials determined she was suicidal and placed her in the jail’s psychiatric unit, giving her only an outfit made from paper to wear, the lawsuit asserts.
She claims she was forced to shower with the male inmates, and that one of them masturbated as he looked at her in the shower.  

Jackson was arrested a third time in June and placed with the men again. An officer made her shower with the men during that incarceration as well, and a male inmate masturbated in front of her that time as well, the lawsuit claims.
“She on three separate times endured horrific, humiliating treatment by tens of jailers,” Jackson’s attorney, Scott Palmer, told the Daily News.
“Every single human being has rights, civil liberties. It applies to everybody,” he continued. “It does not matter what their sexual orientation, sexual identity or their sexual preference is.”
A copy of Dallas County’s policy for interacting with transgender, intersex and nonconforming individuals obtained by the Daily News says no person should be treated differently due to their sexuality or identity.
“All Dallas County Sheriff's Department personnel will treat all persons, regardless of race, religion, color, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, or disability, with the courtesy and dignity which is inherently due every person as a human being,” reads the policy.
A spokesman for Dallas County Sheriff Marian Brown told the Daily News that the office could not comment on Jackson’s lawsuit.
“Since it is pending litigation, under advice from attorney, we were instructed not to say anything about the lawsuit,” the Sheriff’s Office’s public information officer Raul Reyna said.
Brown took over as Dallas County Sheriff in January 2018. Lupe Valdez, who previously held the position, is currently running for governor in Texas as a Democrat.
With her lawsuit, Jackson hopes to ensure the alleged mistreatment she endured in custody in Dallas “doesn’t happen to anyone else,” Palmer said. They are seeking unspecified damages in the case.
Palmer notes that Jackson could’ve used a pseudonym to shield her identity in the case, but opted to take on the situation publicly.
“She wants to make a difference,” Palmer said.

July 11, 2016

Married Gay Police Officer Wounded in Dallas Shooting

  Officer Jesus Retana (Dallas News)

A former Army reservist who served a tour in Afghanistan went on a shooting rampage over July 7-8 during a protest over recent police shootings of African-American men in Minnesota and Louisiana, killing five police officers ( including an openly gay individual ) and wounding up to nine others.
Police used a "bomb robot" on July 8 to end a long standoff in a Dallas parking garage and kill the gunman, identified as Micah Xavier Johnson, a Dallas-area resident who said he "wanted to kill white people." ( Johnson's actions were separate from the peaceful protest that took place. )

The New Civil Rights Network noted that Jesus Retana—who has worked for Dallas Area Rapid Transit ( DART ) for the last 10 years—was among the officers wounded. Retana married Andrew Moss, a former DART officer himself, in 2008.

President Obama has commented, "We still don't know all the facts. What we do know is that there has been a vicious, calculated and despicable attack on law enforcement. Police in Dallas were on duty, doing their jobs, keeping people safe during peaceful protests.

"As I told [Dallas] Mayor [Mike] Rawlings, I believe that I speak for every single American when I say that we are horrified over these events, and that we stand united with the people and the police department in Dallas. According to police, there are multiple suspects. We will learn more, undoubtedly, about their twisted motivations. But let's be clear: There is no possible justification for these kinds of attacks or any violence against law enforcement. The FBI is already in touch with the Dallas police, and anyone involved in these senseless murders will be held fully accountable. Justice will be done."

In a statement, Attorney General Loretta Lynch said, "This has been a week of profound grief and heartbreaking loss. The peaceful protest that was planned in Dallas last night was organized in response to the tragic deaths of Alton Sterling in Louisiana and Philando Castile in Minnesota.

"After the events of this week, Americans across the county are feeling a sense of helplessness, of uncertainty and of fear. These feelings are understandable and they are justified. But the answer must not be violence. The answer is never violence.

"Rather, the answer must be action: calm, peaceful, collaborative and determined action. We must continue working to build trust between communities and law enforcement. We must continue working to guarantee every person in this country equal justice under the law."

LGBT group Lambda Legal issued a statement from Roger Poindexter, South Central Regional Office director and National Board of Directors Co-chair Tracey Guyot-Wallace, both based in Dallas. They said, "It's a sad day for our city. Our hearts go out to the families of the officers who were killed or injured. Gun violence everywhere must end. Shooting random police officers at a peaceful protest isn't the answer to anything."

In a separate statement, Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin said, "We are shocked and sickened by the calculated attack on law enforcement in Dallas last night that has left five officers dead and at least nine other officers and civilians wounded. Our hearts go out to the families and loved ones of those who were senselessly murdered protecting a peaceful protest, and to the Dallas Police Department, the Dallas Area Rapid Transit Department, and the broader community they nobly served.

"There is no justification for this cold-blooded assault on law enforcement officers who go to work each day to protect the public. In the aftermath of Orlando, the LGBTQ community saw police officers across the nation work even harder to protect our safe spaces, and we know how dangerous their jobs can be."

Locally, the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression also condemned the shooting attack on Dallas police. Frank Chapman said, "We reject any effort to hold the movement for justice—which has always been a non-violent mass movement—in any way responsible for this crime." ( The Alliance has called for a mass demonstration at the Federal Building in Chicago at 4:30 p.m. on July 11 that the Department of Justice prosecute police officers who have murdered Black and Latino people. )

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said, "All of America woke up this morning to the horror of police officers being ambushed in Dallas, and our hearts go out to the victims and their families. It is a tragedy that follows two other shocking shootings in Baton Rouge and in Minneapolis.

"As a country and as a city we can never accept acts of violence anywhere, at any time, against anyone, for any reason. We cannot be a country where our differences define us — be it profession, race, creed, or sexual orientation. We must recommit ourselves to our common values to confront corrosive violence. We must build a dialogue that builds trust between us all. That is the foundation of this nation, that is what binds us together, and that is what we all must strive towards every day.”

Windy City Times

Does the Killing of 5 Police Officers Signals Spiraling Violence? The numbers!


The shooting of 12 police officers in Dallas on Thursday suggests spiraling violence: The cops were shot during a protest against the shooting of black men by police. A vicious circle of retribution would be something new for the U.S. where, unlike in other developed countries, killings by police far outnumber officer deaths in the line of duty.

The point that police kill more people in the U.S. than in European countries has often been made. It's intuitively understandable: American cops have to deal with armed criminals more often because guns are more widely available, and the dominant culture is pro-gun, so people have less of a problem using weapons. For all that, however, relatively few officers get killed.

Federal Bureau of Investigation statistics of "justifiable homicide" by law enforcement officers indicate that in 2010-14, the average number of fatal shootings by police was 428 per year (the number has been hovering around 400 for much longer than that). Also according to the FBI, about 50 officers per year are killed in the line of duty. That's already a rather high ratio of inflicted to suffered casualties -- and it disregards the insufficiency of the "justifiable homicide" data; The Washington Post, for example, calculates that a total of 965 people were fatally shot by police in 2015. 

In countries where killings of every kind are not as frequent -- in fact, so infrequent that it even makes little sense to correct the statistics for factors such as population or number of officers -- the ratios are much lower. 

In the U.K., a total of 250 officers have been fatally shot since 1945. That's fewer than four per year. Police, who are usually unarmed, shoot even fewer civilians. Since 1990, they have killed a total of 60 people -- a little more than two per year. 

In Germany, officers are usually armed. Last year, they shot eight people -- about the average number for the last 10 years. Between 1945 and 2011, some 392 German police officers died in the line of duty -- about 6 per year, although there have been fewer deaths in recent years. 

In France, there's a dearth of statistics on police killings. By one count, 54 people were killed by officers between 2005 and 2015, about five a year; and between six and 13 officers have died in the line of duty each year in 2008-15.

With absolute numbers so small, it's difficult to make statistical comparisons with the U.S. Rather, one could say that the killings of and by officers are extraordinary incidents in western Europe, and comparable, small numbers of cops and suspects die at each other's hands. 

What's at stake in the U.S. is the all-important preservation of police legitimacy -- a key concept in today's criminology concerning trust in law enforcement and the perceived obligation to obey the police. Any diminution would produce a precarious situation.

In the wake of the Dallas shootings, it would be a normal human reaction for U.S. cops to get even tougher, to avenge their fallen comrades. Yet what's needed is a de-escalation. There will still be crazed criminals who kill cops -- but perhaps in time a less violent culture will develop as a basis for strengthened law-enforcement legitimacy.

This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.

To contact the author of this story:
Leonid Bershidsky at

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