Abusing Senior Citizens

Bullies often target those who are too weak to defend themselves.  Maybe that explains the rash of stories in the news involving the police using excessive force on senior citizens.  First, we hear of cops tasering a 86-year-old bed-ridden woman and then we see video of another tasering involving a 64-year old-man in his own home.  Now we hear that a cop assaulted a distraught 50 year old woman because she cursed at him during a argument over how he was handling a investigation of the death of her friend.

Brenda Martin says that she confronted Police Chief Chris Ford in his office. He asked her to leave his office and then began pushing her out the door. When she told her friend to to start filming the Chief grabbed her and pushed her into a wall.  He then swept her legs from under her causing her to slam into the floor.

Ms. Martin, after multiple request to the city, was able to obtain a video of the assault from the surveillance cameras at city hall. Ms. Martin suffered a dislocated knee, bruised ribs, and a black eye as a result of this assault.

Not to be outdone by the Police Chief in Wister, OK an Orlando police officer violently took down 84-year-old World War II veteran, Daniel J. Daly, who had the inexcusable audacity to put his hands on the officer. In the process of “defending himself” from this octogenarian, the officer succeeded in breaking the man’s neck. Mr. Daly remains in critical condition and underwent a surgery that a man of his age is unlikely to walk away from.

The incident that led to Mr. Daly’s injury began over a parking dispute. Mr. Daly was upset that his car was being towed. Russ Smith, the tow truck driver that had been called to tow Mr. Daly’s car has stated that Mr. Daly hit him three times. “The three hits I took from the older man was not hard at all, he did hit me and shouldn’t have put his hand on me but at the same token I took into consideration that he was pretty elderly and it didn’t hurt at all,” said Smith.”  Smith believed that Mr. Daly was so little of a threat that he did not even mention Mr. Daly’s actions to the officer when the officer arrived. The officer, on the other hand, was so threatened by Mr. Daly putting his hands on his shoulders that he felt it necessary to slam his head into the ground.

Mr. Smith was able to withstand Mr. Daly’s feeble attack, why could the officer not have done the same without resorting to violence?

Many Code of Conduct documents for officers require that they attempt to de-escalate a situation before resorting to force.  It appears that in neither of the above cases were any such de-escalation attempts made. Instead, overwhelming violent force was the go to method for dealing with upset senior citizens.

Paula Parmeley Carter

Paula is a Staff Writer at CopBlock. She advocates ending the monopoly on policing and protection services. When not writing at CopBlock she enjoys being a wife and mother, reading and drinking good beer.