Iowa cops falsely arrested a teen, then sued him after he posted the bodycam video and mocked them online

Originally published at: Iowa cops falsely arrested a teen, then sued him after he posted the bodycam video and mocked them online | Boing Boing


Streisands gonna Streisand.


so this time, for sure, this word applies:



Turner Classic Movies Judging You GIF by FilmStruck


Yeah, not that I have any desire to do this ever, but if I were to ever find myself involved in training or educating new cops, I think one thing I would include in that would be a couple of days of understanding how social media and the Internet work. And I’m amazed at this point that this isn’t standard in their training. This is the world you live in, guys. You gotta assume that everything you do in the course of your job as a cop is going to potentially end up in a viral video, and it’s almost always going to be you doing something wrong or stupid (or both) if it goes viral. And once that’s happened, there’s no making it go away. There’s only minimizing the fallout, and suing the person you did something wrong or stupid to is how to maximize the fallout, not minimize it. It’s like these people just discovered the Internet even exists just a week ago.


Yeah, the distinction between “comvicted” and “served with a restraining order” might seem barely relevant to normal people, but one group who obviously do care is judges, given it’s their whole thing.

Hopefully, if this guy loses the libel case, he’ll only pay token damages, but still. Even if you’re in the right, you want to be careful saying legally actionable stuff on social media.


This particular claim probably survived because you need fact investigation, but generally statements don’t have to be strictly true to defend against a libel charge. Substantial truth is sufficient. If for example there was a restraining order for domestic violence but no actual conviction, that would still be a defense.

And if the cops are public figures - which I think they should be at least in the course of their jobs but I don’t know the actual rule here - the bar is even higher. Google tells me at least in MA police officers are public figures:

Not as sure about the invasion of privacy claim. Seems odd considering we are talking about criticizing government actors in the conduct of their government duties.


We get lost in too many words.

What the “Peace” officers did, and continued to do was wrong; and this kid is holding them accountable.

Hundred of pages of legal paperwork filing court time etc is just a waste of taxpayer dollars and time. Add in environmentally consuming too, just to be modern.



Officer Sausage Fingers and his Lieutenant (!) Supervisor working overtime to keep the mean streets of Fallujah (um, Iowa) free from master criminals. Truly some Apex civil servant behavior there. Joking aside, I shudder to think how people of color and less middle class socio economic status experience this sort of thing. I’m sure they tend to be less directly critical then this young man is able to be in the situation, and the request to speak to the officers at the end likely goes far, far differently. ACA truly B.

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