Jewish man arrested at Kansas City library speech after asking "provocative" questions


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/10/04/jewish-man-arrested-at-kansas.html


List of Things That Frighten Police
#2

I have no opinion on the trespassing charges (sounds fishy but may be possible). but resisting arrest? how is this possible with an off-duty cop?


#3

The authoritarians may have finally met their arch-nemesis: librarians.

It was destined…


#4

ISTM that the trespassing charge revolves around who exactly has the authority to decide that he is no longer welcome. Certainly public libraries usually have a procedure to “ban” people, and if they show up after being made aware of that, then they are trespassing. But it sounds like the library official was trying to prevent the man from being escorted out, and I don’t think that a private security guard or off-duty policeman has the authority to make that decision, although they can enforce the decision of others. So unless the man had already been banned*, it sounds a bit fishy.

  • and it’s perfectly possible that somebody asking provocative questions today was being more obnoxious on previous occasions.

#5

Yay! KC is in the news! Oh… wait… damn it.

Some animals are more special.


#6

Look, First Amendment aside, we have to crack down on this kind of behavior before it catches on.


#7

I’m, like, totally a cop

Do what I say!!!


#8

Beware citizens - its a slippery slope.


#9

list of things that frighten police

I’m pretty sure “asking questions” was already on the list


#10

I find it incredibly disturbing how complete disrespect of our bodies is now matter of course. You can be grabbed without warning by LEOs (undeclared and out of uniform), and any reaction whatsoever can be and is often interpretted as “resisting”, which can get you extrajudicially executed on the spot (or, as this poor fellow, arrested, charged, and saddled for life with a criminal record).


#11

So you’re convinced that he had it coming? Or are you Just Asking Questions about the guy’s character?

Nothing in the story indicates your theory.


#12

In my state, it must be made perfectly clear to you that you are to leave immediately and not return. If, after you have been told to leave, you refuse to do so, LEOs are called and can charge you with criminal trespass (property owner must press charge).


#13

Cops: He’s trespassing!
Rothe-Kushel: No I’m not!
Cops: Yes he is! And he’s arguing, which is the same as resisting!
Library official: He’s not trespassing!
Cops: All right, you’re under arrest, too, for interfering with the arrest!

Seriously. “Resisting” and “interfering with” an arrest are only legitimate charges if the charge itself (trespassing) is legitimate, and if a library official says that the man is not trespassing in the library, how can they read any of these charges with a straight face?


#14

are Botox treatments part of the healthcare package?


#15

Happy Rosh Hashanah everybody!


#16

“Being Uppity” is a class-C felony, I think.


#17

My suspicion is that the private security/off duty policeman exceeded his authority,


#18

No, I’m just pointing out that there MIGHT be more to the story. It’s even possible that if that policeman regularly provided security to the library that he could be more familiar with who had been banned than a library administrator who didn’t spend much time working with the public.

Of course the MORE likely explanation is the the security guy exceeded his authority, and when confronted with that fact, he doubled down. It’s important to not assume immediately that all the facts have been presented.


#19

Another fine example of police cracking down on thoughtcrime.

Goddamn those intellectuals, they’re the reason the trains don’t run on time!
With their questions and constant comments about archaic concepts like “free speech” and “right to assembly” and “security of one’s person”.

We provide the security and the rights, citizen!


#20

If that’s the case, you’d think it’d be in [the officer’s statement] (http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-public-library-director-says-police-over-reacted-arrests-library-event#stream/0) (from one of the links in the OP):

“The Director of Jewish Community Security, listed Witness #1 approached Mr. Rothe-Kushel and advised him that he was done speaking and needed to leave. Mr. Rothe-Kushel then continued to yell over the crowd and refused to leave. Witness # 1 then began to physically remove Mr. Rothe-Kushel from his location… I began to assist Witness #1 in escorting Mr. Rothe-Kushel in leaving the facility, and he also resisted my efforts in doing so by tensing up and bracing himself. It was during this time that I advised Mr. Rothe-Kushel I was a police officer and he was leaving now. Mr. Rothe-Kushel continued to actively resist his removal by tensing up, pushing back on Witness #1 and my efforts to lead him out of the auditorium while continuing to yell at the Ambassador.”

Meanwhile, Woolfolk “began to intervene and actively began pushing me away from Mr. Rothe-Kushel in an attempt to keep the Director and myself from removing the actively resisting Mr. Rothe-Kushel. I then pushed Mr. Woolfolk away several times with my open hand on his chest area after identifying myself as a police officer in an effort to keep Mr. Woolfolk physically off of myself and Mr. Rothe-Kushel. Mr. Woolfolk continued to ignore my orders and pushed back escalating the situation and preventing the immediate removal of Mr. Rothe-Kushel. Mr. Woolfolk also took hold of the railing with his left hand firmly keeping grasp in an attempt to keep me from pushing him away from myself, Witness #1, and Mr. Rothe-Kushel.”

Eventually, another officer arrived and assisted in Woolfolk’s arrest. Woolfolk has said he was not trying to resist arrest.