Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Marion County Republican Chairman Kyle Walker Throws Stones, Apparently Unaware He Lives in a Glass House

Marion County GOP Chairman
Kyle Walker
The Indianapolis Star has a story this morning on the local parties exchanging jabs following the arrest of Democratic Councilor Joe Simpson.  Simpson was arrest Sunday and preliminarily charged with resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and refusal to leave an emergency area.  The arrest stemmed from the allegation that Simpson interfered with a burglary investigation.
Marion County GOP Chairman Kyle Walker used the incident to issue a statement:
“The arrest of Democrat City-County Councillor Joseph Simpson is the second time in less than four years that a Democrat Councillor has been arrested for violating the law and then resisting law enforcement. Our police officers have a tough enough job without such disrespect and interference from Democrat members of the City-County Council. This pattern of contempt for our public safety officers needs to stop immediately. I call upon Council President Maggie Lewis to remove Councillor Simpson from the Public Safety Committee and Law Enforcement Study Commission and to condemn the actions of her fellow Democrats in hopes that this pattern does not continue.”
The Star reports that Marion County Democratic Chairman Ed Treacy responded listing Republican elected officials involved in scrapes with the law, including former Councilor Lincoln Plowman, who was convicted after a federal corruption trial.

If Walker had been smart, he would have made a gracious statement that the Simpson incident was unfortunate and that the legal process should play itself out.  Instead he tried to twist things in order to make Simpson's troubles a political football.  Of course, that didn't do anything but highlight the obvious hypocrisy in his one-sided criticism of councilors accused of violating the law.  The worst thing though is that Walker's foolish statement placed the ball on the tee so the repugnant Treacy could hit it out of the park.

Public corruption is far more damaging to the body politic than an isolated incident in which some elected official gets arrested for acting the fool, interfering with police officers doing their job. Yet has Walker ever expressed concern about public corruption in Indianapolis and the need to clean up the City?  Nope.  Has he ever expressed concern about out-of-control pay-to-play where a big contributor like Keystone Construction gets a garage built with our tax dollars and gets to keep 100% of the revenue from the building?  Nope. 

Finally, I would be remiss if I didn't criticize the coverage of the Simpson arrest.  Too many reporters  are simply accepting what is recounted in the arrest report as 100% true.  If you do much criminal law, you pretty quickly find out that police reports are often not factually accurate and often omit key details. That's not surprising as police officers are human beings who want their role in an incident viewed in the best possible light.  So let's not judge someone based on the unproven accusations made in an arrest report.


M Theory said...

I thought the same thing when I read that press release.

I think the Republicans should never throw stones unless their house is completely clean (and we all know it is filthy).

Unknown said...

Paul: I fair statement you wrote. Thx for taking the time to write.

Cato said...

"charged with resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and refusal to leave an emergency area"

How do you get charged with resisting arrest and no underlying crime for which the arrest was attempted?

The other two charges are piling-on charges that the cops create out of thin air and have absolutely no legal standard.

Paul K. Ogden said...

Cato, I've seen that before...someone charged with resisting arrest when there was no underlying charge for which he was being arrested. I think that's wrong.

Here though I think you can say he was being arrested for disorderly conduct and refusal to leave.

Ghostwriter Judiciary said...

It's "resisting law enforcement," not "resisting arrest." The two are different.

marksmall2001 said...

I was going to say you had mixed metaphors. One does not "tee it up" to "hit it out of the park." However,in t-ball, I suppose it is possible for kids to hit one "out of the park." Unfortunately, the Chicago Cubs probably need such help this year.

varangianguard said...

"this year", Mark?!?


Paul K. Ogden said...

Bill, that's like calling a "seat belt" a "safety belt." Doesn't make it not a seat belt.

Ghostwriter Judiciary said...

Here's the law:

IC 35-44-3-3
Resisting law enforcement; mandatory sentence
Sec. 3. (a) A person who knowingly or intentionally:
(1) forcibly resists, obstructs, or interferes with a law enforcement officer or a person assisting the officer while the officer is lawfully engaged in the execution of the officer's duties;
(2) forcibly resists, obstructs, or interferes with the authorized service or execution of a civil or criminal process or order of a court; or
(3) flees from a law enforcement officer after the officer has, by visible or audible means, including operation of the law enforcement officer's siren or emergency lights, identified himself or herself and ordered the person to stop;
commits resisting law enforcement, a Class A misdemeanor, except as provided in subsection (b).

I didn't write the law, but by its clear definition it does not require a cop to be in the process of making an arrest.

MacReady said...

What's sad in this scenario is people are questioning the integrity of the officers' actions onscene, but nobody is questioning why the supervisor who was present during the arrest was called downtown the next day and encouraged to "unarrest" in the future by IMPD Brass in exchange for favors from the public safety committee.

The ball may have been nailed off the tee, but whoever's covering this accidentally ran to third instead...