Iowa cops use excessive force to apprehend speeding woman in labor


I’m not sure I would characterize that using spike strips against somebody going 30 MPH above the speed limit and refusing to pull over counts as excessive force.


Did you not see the part where they held her at gunpoint… while she’s in labor? Ever been in labor? Not exactly a time when you want a gun pointed at you… like anyone generally ever wants that, but in labor… yeah, no.


Of course, the police are debating whether to file charges.

Oh, and they say a 911 call in advance would have helped too. How the fuck do you predict an emergency?

What a bunch of idiots.


Manson Police Chief Tom Ritts told WHO-TV that the County Attorney would
determine if charges would be filed against the couple. Ritts said the
situation could have been avoided if the couple contacted 911 in

Fuck the police.


Hrm. Which has the possibility of getting them pregnant, and ending up in this exact situation!

I like this line of thought.


Yeah, but, I certainly don’t think I’d want to get in a long term relationship with these particular police.


Yeah, having been present a time or two, I’m willing to excuse almost any behavior that a woman might exhibit if she’s in labor. Actually, hell, I’m willing to excuse the father of the child for almost anything during labor.

On the other claw, if there’s anyone who is not going to be excessively intimidated by being held at gunpoint, it’d be a woman in labor. I can imagine the scene now…

Cop: “Hold it right there sweating screaming fat lady, or I’ll shoot!”
Woman in extreme labor: “Shoot me now, or shut up! Either way I’m going to the hospital, so get the hell out of my way!”

But apparently not all cops are familiar with the process.


I do not understand this strange moon-language you speak.

1 Like

If they’d called 911 in advance, the cops could have come to their house and shot them before they got in the car.


Funny thing is, many women won’t even notice something as inconsequential as a nearby gun during a contraction because their focus is locked. Now, being forced to be in a position that isn’t right…THAT you’d notice!


I think the cops did the best you could expect in a crazy situation that unfolded quickly where they had little to no information. Just like the parents. All hell broke loose and they just reacted.

The chief, however, has the luxury of time and the complete picture. Tell the new parents ‘congratulations. We’re not pressing charges’ and everybody gets a crazy story to tell at family gatherings, bars, etc.


“Call 911 in advance” is not an option, you foolish cop. The situation obviously reached emergency level during the drive. Had it been an emergency before they got in the car, they would have called an ambulance.

1 Like

Story says they called 911 while enroute. Sounds like maybe she was hysterical enough to incite the police response?

Except in America that ambulance ride starts at $1000 for a couple of blocks.
And is not covered by most health insurance.

So, yeah, people drive and shit happens


For the life of me, I can’t figure out why pregnant women don’t just plan ahead and arrive at the hospital an hour or two before going into labor.

[Briefly consults wife]



I grew up in that area, still have some family connections to it, and, in fact, my last interaction with Law Enforcement was just a few miles outside of Manson, given the description of where they were first sighted and where they were stopped, probably the exact same road, going the opposite direction (was driving to go retrieve my grandmother, Going about 65 in a 55, let off with a warning).

These two are very lucky that this was where they had this little adventure. A few bits of general detail, for the folk who don’t know the area very well:
This is very rural area. Fort Dodge, the “city” they were actually stopped just outside of, is the “Big City” of the area, with a population of 25K, but, it’s also pretty much the only major hospital even close (there are some smaller ones in the county seats, but, for anything other than basic services or dire emergencies, Fort Dodge is it).
The article states they arrived with an hour to spare, but, in those parts, it can easily take 30-45 minutes to get anywhere.
The lucky bit is, cops in those areas, especially town and sheriff department types, are almost always well connected to the community. We’re talking real Mayberry type deals here. It’s actually pretty insane that a Manson city police officer went after them, or even saw them, given the number of police they actually have.
As to the speed of 30 over, Manson has a bit of a speed trap-y setup on the road they were likely using, where it goes from 55-25 in a rather short space, then back up to 55 a quarter mile later when you’re no longer in city limits. So, it doesn’t necessarily mean they were going 80-90, could likely be that they were going 55 and not slowing down for the little bit of the city that road skims (it basically brushes the south edge of the city limits, one has to leave the highway to actually go into the town proper).


Normally I’m the first to cry foul on police misconduct, but this is not that kind of situation. Exceeding the speed limit in an emergency is legally justified, but not stopping for the cops is not. I don’t care if the wife didn’t want to slow down or stop when the cops tried to pull them over, but the husband should have had the good sense to know that not doing that would be an incredibly bad idea. If the cops came to the car after blowing out the tires using spikes, of course they had their guns drawn -it’s not like they were putting it to the pregnant woman’s head or anything, they had their guns drawn on a car that was going what, more than 90mph and failed to pull over? Of course they had their guns drawn.

Bad situation made worse by someone who didn’t realize how the police would perceive a failure to pull over. And, ultimately it made them get to the hospital much later too, I’m sure.


My partner went into full blown labour on the drive, we’re rural & it was an hour + 15 minute drive at 10kph over. It can be pretty damn hair raising, especially at 2:30am on country roads before and after the stint on the highway.

On the plus side, it may have sped things along, we were on our way home again by 9am. If we had had such a quick and easy labour (compared) with the first one we wouldn’t have had to go to the hospital at all since that time we were in the city with an awesome midwife.

But the first delivery was complicated, long & without intervention would have been dangerous. Being out in the sticks we decided to just go in, figuring we would have plenty of time between water breaking & beginning labour & our midwife wouldn’t have to drive forever to get to us. Incorrect! we were.

If a cop had pulled me over I was all set with precisely what to say to indicate an emergency with assurances I could follow safely. But they were asleep or something thankfully.

Thats exactly what cops do in a high speed chase.

A quick google search “crash on the way to the hospital” leads to some tragic stories, im glad this couple didnt end up hurting themselves or anyone else.

1 Like