Category Archives: Police state

UK Police State: man arrested for carrying potato peeler; another gets 8 months for giving middle finger to traffic camera

While we were sleeping, the United Kingdom had morphed into a tyrannical police state.

Here are four recent cases of police tyranny:

(1) Breitbart reports that on April 28, 2018, Scott Walker, 39, was arrested in Dunfermline, Scotland, for carrying a potato peeler in a public place “without reasonable excuse” and faces up to four years in prison.

Criminal Law (Consolidation) (Scotland) Act 1995 forbids the carrying of “an article which had a blade or which was sharply pointed, namely a potato peeler”.

Walker was on bail for another unspecified offense at the time of his arrest. Local newspaper the Dunfermline Press And West of Fife Advertiser quotes Walker’s defense attorney (“solicitor”) Selina McKay who said her client “suffers from significant learning difficulties which have been lifelong”.

The unusual arrest comes amid heightened public interest over knife crime, as UK capital London — an official gun-free zone — experiences an unprecedented crime wave with 62 suspected murders in the capital so far in 2018 — leaving the city overtaking traditionally higher-crime New York for the first time in over 200 years. A number of these killings have been shootings, while others have been committed with knives.

See DCG’s “London crime spree continues: Five victims die during knife and shooting attacks in London weekend violence

(2) Earlier, Scottish comedian/YouTuber Mark Meechan, aka Count Dankula, was fined £800 ($1,085) after a two-year court battle over him filming his girlfriend’s pug dog making a Nazi salute in return for treats.

(3) Meanwhile, in Yorkshire, England, Timothy Hill, 67, was sentenced to eight months jail and banned from driving for a year for “perverting the course of justice.”

Police say that on three occasions in December 2017, Hill drove past North Yorkshire Police’s mobile safety camera vans and was photographed giving the middle-finger salute to the camera.

This apparently angered police who launched an investigation into the senior citizen—not because he was caught harming someone one—but because he raised his middle finger at a traffic camera. Police then found a laser jammer on Hill’s white Range Rover.

Although police were unable to ascertain Hill’s speed because of the laser jammer, they charged him with “perverting the course of justice,” which he pleaded guilty to at court to avoid an even longer prison sentence. The judge who jailed Hill said such actions “strike at the heart” of the justice system and his sentence must act as a deterrent to others.

North Yorkshire Police tweeted this:

Top tip: If you want to stay out of trouble, don’t do what this driver did and swear at our mobile safety cameras while driving past in a car fitted with a laser jammer. Today he’s beginning 8 months in jail for perverting the course of justice.

Shortly after putting the man’s photo out on Twitter, the police department then released video from their camera to further shame the senior citizen.

Traffic Constable Andrew Forth, who led the investigation for North Yorkshire Police, released the following statement:

If you want to attract our attention, repeatedly gesturing at police camera vans with your middle finger while you’re driving a distinctive car fitted with a laser jammer is an excellent way to do it.

It’s also an excellent way to end up in prison. As Hill’s case shows, perverting the course of justice is a very serious charge which carries a custodial sentence.

(4) Lastly, not only must you not give your middle finger to a traffic camera, you must also refrain from making critical comments on social media about how baby Alfie Evans was treated.

See DCG’s “Court rules sick UK toddler’s life support can be cut off, despite parents’ wishes” and “UK hospital applies to High Court to switch off baby Alfie’s life support

Merseyside Police in northwest England has issued a threat that you’ll be investigated “and where necessary will be acted upon”.

UK police threatens anyone critical of how Alfie Evans was treated

H/t Ken R.

~Eowyn

UK is toast: Ranks poorly for press freedom; schools remove analogue clocks because teens can’t tell the time

Our DCG often says “The UK is toast”. Here are two more signs that the UK indeed is toast.

(1) The UK ranks poorly in freedom of the press

EuroNews reports, April 25, 2018, that according to the NGO Reporters Without Borders, the UK ranks 40th out of 180 countries for press freedom, placing it among the worst countries in Western Europe. Incredibly, the UK ranks behind Chile, Trinidad, Tobago and Samoa in terms of restrictions on reporters.

Among the concerns about the UK, Reporters Without Borders cited a heavy-handed approach towards the press (often in the name of national security); the Investigatory Powers Act that gives insufficient protection to whistleblowers, journalists and their sources; threats to encryption tools; and plans to criminalize repeated viewing of extremist content.

Leading the EU for press freedom are Sweden (2nd overall), the Netherlands (3rd) and Finland (4th).

(2) UK schools are getting rid of analogue clocks because teenagers are unable to tell the time

Camilla Turner reports for The Telegraph, April 24, 2018, that teachers are now installing digital devices after pupils sitting for their GCSE and A-level exams complained that they were struggling to read the correct time on an analogue clock.

Former headmaster Malcolm Trobe, deputy general secretary at the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), said young people have become accustomed to using digital devices: “The current generation aren’t as good at reading the traditional clock face as older generations. They are used to seeing a digital representation of time on their phone, on their computer. Nearly everything they’ve got is digital so youngsters are just exposed to time being given digitally everywhere.”

Trobe said that although it is assumed that by the time students reach secondary school they will be able to read a clock face, in reality this is often not the case. He said that schools are trying to make everything as “as easy and straightforward as possible” for pupils during their exams, but having a traditional clock in the exam room could be a cause of unnecessary stress: “You don’t want them to put their hand up to ask how much time is left. Schools will inevitably be doing their best to make young children feel as relaxed as the can be. There is actually a big advantage in using digital clocks in exam rooms because it is much less easy to mistake a time on a digital clock when you are working against time.”

A number of teachers shared their experiences about the issue on social media. All said that their students cannot tell the time with an analogue clock.

Has it occurred to UK teachers that they can teach their students how to read time on an analogue clock? How difficult is that?

Meanwhile, Sally Payne, the head pediatric occupational therapist at the Heart of England foundation NHS Trust, warned that children are increasingly finding it hard to hold pens and pencils because of an excessive use of technology.  When they are given a pencil at school, they are increasingly unable to hold it.

Payne said: “To be able to grip a pencil and move it, you need strong control of the fine muscles in your fingers. Children need lots of opportunity to develop those skills. It’s easier to give a child an iPad than encouraging them to do muscle-building play such as building blocks, cutting and sticking, or pulling toys and ropes. Because of this, they’re not developing the underlying foundation skills they need to grip and gold a pencil.”

H/t FOTM‘s Grif

See also:

Update:

Can you imagine how befuddled those UK kids would be if the analog clock has Roman numerals? LOL (h/t John Molloy)

Roman numeral clock ~Eowyn

Homeland Security to compile database to track bloggers, journalists and other ‘media influencers’

Amidst “concerns” regarding accuracy in media and the potential for “fake news” to influence elections and policy, the Trump Administration’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is compiling a database to track “media influencers,” including journalists, correspondents and bloggers.

On April 3, 2018, DHS posted a solicitation notice for a contractor to create a “Media Monitoring Services” database.

According to the DHS’s “Statement of Work” (RNBO-18-00041_SOW_-_Draft.docx), the chosen contracting company will perform the following “media monitoring” services:

  1. Monitor and track traditional news sources as well as social media for coverage relevant to Washington, DHS or a particular event, to include:
    • > 290,000 global news sources.
    • Online, print, broadcast, cable, radio, trade and industry publications, local sources, national/international outlets, traditional news sources, and social media.
    • > 100 languages, including Arabic, Chinese and Russian.
    • Translation function to instantly translate these articles to English.
  2. Analyze the media coverage in terms of content, volume, sentiment, geographical spread, top publications, media channels, reach, AVE, top posters, influencers, languages, momentum, circulation.
  3. Monitor the public activities of media members and influencers by “location, beat and influencers”.
  4. Create for users to access a 24/7 password-protected, online platform, mobile app, and media influencer database, including journalists, editors, correspondents, social media influencers, bloggers etc.

H/t Chicago Sun-Times and FOTM‘s Stovepipe

Here’s an email I just received from Steve Quayle:

They already have unbelievable algorithms, data bases and kill lists so advanced that they have a complete AI functioning termination list. There are 9 million people on it — gun owners, Constitutionists, Christians, home schoolers, conservative activists, etc. Look up the MIAC Report: Fusion Center MIAC Strategic Report

~Eowyn

Democrat sheriff candidate Daryl Fisher ‘jokes’ about killing legal gun owners if they resist confiscation

R. Daryl Fisher, a former Ashville PD captain and current law enforcement training director, is a Democrat candidate for Buncombe County Sheriff in North Carolina.

On March 7, 2018, Fisher spoke at the monthly meeting of pro-gun control Moms Demand Action, in West Ashville Library, Ashville, NC.

Responding to a question from the audience, Fisher said, with intermittent applause from the audience (note: some of his words are inaudible):

“I do have some recommendations. First of all, I would like to see the age for any purchase of firearm between (inaudible) ….. I think we should ban the sale of all high-capacity magazines, handguns and long guns. I think we need to ban the sale of even mechanisms that allow a firearm to fire in rapid succession. The reason why that’s the terminology we need to use in our statutes is there’s somebody out there is gonna develop some mechanism at some time that is going to be able to fire in that position. So we can’t just say ‘bump stock,’ we cannot say a ‘fully automatic trigger’ . We have got to say ‘any mechanism’ that allows firearm to be fired in rapid succession.

I also would like to require that when a person gets their carry concealed permit, I would like to have to carry the weapon at the trigger and not be allowed to carry any other weapon. For law enforcement officers, when we train, training standards mandate that we only carry the weapons as we’re qualified to. I think it should be the same for citizens.

I would also like to see some proficiency testing mandated here. You can see that one, make sure that the folks, if they take action, they’re trained efficiently, and two, they don’t hurt somebody who’s next to them.

Now we should do that, well, I would like to see it annually. However, permits are only issued every five years. None of us made the law…. something that we could do in the future, so that anytime once somebody renews their permit, I think that they should have some type of training instead….

[3:05 mark] I’m gonna tell you now: Don’t buy into the scare tactics, don’t believe the scare tactics. Because you’ve heard people say ‘You’ll have to pry my guns from my cold, dead hands.’ [Fisher shrugs his shoulders nonchalantly, to sarcastic tittering from the audience.] Okay! [He again shrugs his shoulders to indicate that it’s okay with him that gun owners defend their guns till death. The audience of mainly women laugh uproariously and applaud loudly. Fisher smiles, pleased with the audience’s reaction.] When you pass away, we’ll come get it…. Joking just a little bit.”

Hear for yourself:

If YouTube takes down the video, here it is in MP4 format, safe from YouTube censorship:

After Fisher’s incendiary remarks were posted on AltMedia sites like Conservative Tribune, on March 24, Fisher issued a denial on his Facebook page, claiming his remark had been taken out of context and that he was just joking:

Some reactions from Facebook readers to Fisher’s denial:

Bob Durham: “Since you have more than twenty years in law enforcement I believe that you have enough experience and intelligence to know better. In the age of cell phone cinematographers all LEO’s are aware of how they must watch their speech. I have twenty years in the field myself and I would not have made that ‘joke’. If your citizenry chooses to elect you then they certainly deserve better than such ill-thought sound bites. The most dangerous weapon you have as a leader of an agency is your mouth. And just like you can’t call back a bullet after you squeezed the trigger, you can’t take back poorly chosen vernacular. It comes across as pandering to a special interest group.”

Vernon Roach: “You are not advocating for ‘Justice For All’ when you propose on taking people gun rights away. As a retired Army Veteran of 26 years…I think we should slow down when considering taking rights away from good people because of the actions of the criminal elements. I’ve had close friends die protecting the rights you are willing to dispose of…. Also, if we disarm the populace, don’t forget that our country, without guns, would be open to being invaded. Why would you consider stripping me of owning a weapon that I trained with for 26 years? I have done nothing wrong and would protect us in the event of an invasion on our soil… . Also, for your safety, I do not suggest going door to door trying to take weapons away by force. I think you would be met with resistance. I wrote an article on the subject if you would like to read more. https://thejoeandannstore.com/home/freedom-now-then/

Reaction on YouTube:

snowlothar: “Laughing about killing people simply because they are constitution abiding patriots makes you one sick individual. I believe you and your cronies should be placed on the no fly list and have a psychological investigation performed. You are certainly not fit for public office and frankly should not be part of a free society.”

MKArnold001: “You should be ashamed, but you’re unapologetic. You’re a bad American. I listened to your entire speech; your detractors are not misrepresenting what you’ve said, they have you spot on. You should be ashamed but you don’t even know why we’re calling you out. Btw, judging by their questions, your audience is sadly ignorant of firearms laws. You’ll be remembered for what you said, “…cold dead hands …OK…joking just a little bit there.” You are a bad American and I’m saddened you were ever a LEO.”

Cillian Zeal of Conservative Tribune points out that:

“In most of North Carolina, Fisher would generally seem to be a poor candidate with that kind of attitude. However, Buncombe County includes the ultra-liberal enclave of Asheville, a sort of San Francisco for the Tar Heel State. In fact, Fisher has served as a captain with the Asheville Police Department and is currently the county’s law enforcement training director. (And doesn’t that just make you feel safe?) There’s not a whole lot of polling out there, but those factors could mean he’s got a legitimate shot.

The fact that this guy was able to talk about being willing to kill people over the Second Amendment is a horrible omen. The fact that Moms Demand Action members thought it was funny was worse. This guy cannot become a sheriff. Buncombe County residents need to mobilize, and they need to mobilize now. The alternative is simply too grim to imagine.”

H/t FOTM‘s MomOfIV

See also:

~Eowyn

Illinois State Assembly approves gun confiscation bill

The state legislature of Illinois has approved a bill, HB 1465, which:

  • Requires 18 to 20-year-olds to hand over or transfer ownership of heretofore legally possessed “assault weapons” — which the NRA-ILA describes as commonly-owned “semi-automatic firearms” — as well as any magazines that hold more than ten rounds of ammunition.
  • Bans the sale of certain types of semi-automatic weapons to individuals under age 21.
  • Makes owning such a weapon by persons under age 21 a Class 3 felony for a first offense and a Class 2 felony for a second offense.

The government forcing people to forfeit or hand over weapons previously deemed legal is confiscation.

On February 28, 2018, the bill was passed by a vote of 64-51 in the State House of Representatives. On March 14, 2018, the Illinois State Senate passed the bill by a vote of 33-22. Both the House and Senate are controlled by a Democrat majority.

HB 1465 was introduced in Illinois’ House by Rep. Michelle Mussman (D). The bill’s 23 co-sponsors are all Democrats: 16 females, 7 males.

HB 1465 was introduced in Illinois’ Senate by Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago). There were 7 co-sponsors, among whom was Republican Sen. Jim Oberweis, whom the NRA had given an “A” rating in 2014.

The bill deviates from the traditional military definition of assault rifle, requiring the weapon to be capable of selective fire options like three round bursts and fully-automatic, and instead defines it as any semi-automatic rifle or pistol with a belt or magazine fed system capable of more than 10 rounds or featuring a folding stock or the ability to accept tactical attachments such as scopes. The definition also includes some .50 caliber rifles.

Critics of the gun confiscation bill were taken aback by “the idea that the government would confiscate property.” The bill’s House sponsor, Rep. Michelle Mussman, responded to these concerns by assuring them “authorities will not visit homes to pick up weapons.” Rather, “a first offense for getting caught with prohibited firearms would be a misdemeanor offense.”

After the state Senate passed the bill, HB 1465 must go back to the House for reconciliation because the Senate added an amendment, meant to attract Republican support for the bill, which would allow individuals who owned such weapons prior to the passage of the law to use that fact as an affirmative defense when facing felony charges under the legislation.

But Sen. Chapin Rose (R) told Watchdog.org that the amendment would not necessarily protect owners of the weapons from facing felony charges if they do not surrender them. He believes the bill should have exempted current owners of the weapons from facing charges, rather than just offering them an affirmative defense while under arrest.

If Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) signs the bill, HB 1465 will become law. Residents under the age of 21 will have 90 days to turn over the guns and magazines.

Rauner recently vetoed a bill that would have required gun retailers to be licensed by the state, claiming that to be “unnecessary, burdensome regulation.” Gubernatorial vetoes can be overturned by a three-fifths majority vote in both houses of the Illinois General Assembly.

Illinois also recently passed other gun control bills in addition to the gun confiscation HB 1465:

  • The Illinois State Senate passed HB 1467, which bans bump stocks and trigger cranks, and added an amendment to that bill allowing localities to ban what it defines as assault weapons, potentially creating different gun laws on a town-by-town basis in Illinois.
  • The Illinois House of Representatives passed HB 1468, which would impose a 72-hour waiting period on purchases of items defined as assault weapons. The Senate has yet to vote on the measure.

Sources: Breitbart; Fox2; WAND-TV; Truth In Media

NRA members in Illinois should read this: “Supreme Court ruled in 2008 that Second Amendment applies to individuals, not militias, and may include military weapons”.

~Eowyn

Gun Control: Seattle police uses new mental-health law to confiscate gun from non-violent man

On March 1, 2018, Seattle’s police department became the first law enforcement agency in Washington state to confiscate a firearm under a new law known as an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) — a gun control law that permits police or family members, with a judge’s permission, to temporarily take firearms from people who may present a danger to others or themselves.

The unnamed 31-year-old man, who is suspected of being mentally ill, is described by neighbors as “intimidating” people and “staring down” customers through store-front windows with a gun holstered at his side. Tony Montana, who knows the man from his apartment complex, said, “He was roaming the hallways with a .25 caliber automatic. And it created a lot of fear obviously because I didn’t know if he was coming after me or gonna just start shooting the place up.”

Note: Washington state allows concealed carry of firearms, with permit.

Seattle police say the department received several calls about the man’s escalating behavior, including from a restaurant near the man’s home in the 2200 block of Second Avenue complaining that the man was harassing them while carrying a holstered firearm. The volume of complaints convinced Seattle police to seek an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO), aka red flag law, requiring the man to surrender all his firearms.

The man refused to comply, so police returned with a warrant, arrested him at his apartment, seized a .25 caliber handgun, and are in the process of recovering several other firearms the man owned that are currently with a family member.

Sources: KOMO News; KATU2

On November 8, 2016, the Washington State legislature passed Initiative Measure No. 1491: Extreme Risk Protection Act (ERPA), which allows police to confiscate firearms from individuals deemed to be mentally ill and so are “at high risk of harming themselves or others.”

ERPA claims that individuals who pose a danger to themselves or others often exhibit signs that alert family, household members, or law enforcement to the threat. Signs that the person “may soon commit an act of violence” can include “acts or threats of violence, self-harm, or the abuse of drugs or alcohol”. Accordingly, ERPA provides “a court procedure for family, household members, and law enforcement to obtain an [extreme risk protection] order temporarily restricting a person’s access to firearms.”

After a family member or law enforcement petitions for an ERPO, the superior court of the state of Washington must order a hearing to be held not later than 14 days from the date of the order. But the court can issue an ex parte Extreme Risk Protection Order even before a hearing.

In that hearing, the individual targeted for an ERPO has the burden of proof and must prove “by a preponderance of the evidence” that he/she “does not pose a significant danger of causing personal injury to self or others by having in his or her custody or control, purchasing, possessing, or receiving a firearm.”

During the hearing, the court will determine whether grounds for an Extreme Risk Protection Order exists by considering “any relevant evidence,” including

  • Any act or threat of violence;
  • “dangerous mental health issues” — whatever that means;
  • “stalking”;
  • conviction for domestic violence;
  • “abuse of controlled substances or alcohol”;
  • ownership, access to, or intent to possess firearms“;
  • “unlawful or reckless use, display, or brandishing of a firearm”;
  • recent acquisition of firearms

In other words, merely owning a firearm is “evidence” to justify an Extreme Risk Protection Order that will be used to remove or confiscate the firearm.

The duration of an ERPO is one year, but the order can be renewed. For Washington state’s one-page brochure on ERPO, click here.

Five states have passed the ERPO law: Washington, Oregon, California, Indiana and Connecticut. Texas has a modified version. At the federal level, Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-Calif.) and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) introduced legislation last May that would encourage states to adopt ERPO. (Washington Post)

Both Democrats and Republicans are receptive to ERPO, but not the National Rifle Association. In a statement, the NRA says the Extreme Risk Protection Order “strips the accused of their Second Amendment rights [and] would be issued by a judge based on the brief statement of the petitioner.” (Wikipedia)

See also:

~Eowyn

UK criminalizes carrying of acid and other corrosive substances

In the United Kingdom, access by the general public to firearms is tightly controlled by law. Members of the public may own sporting rifles and shotguns, subject to licensing, but handguns were effectively banned after the Dunblane school massacre in 1996, the UK’s first and only school shooting. (Wikipedia)

So what do criminals use in the UK?

Knives and acid!

Last August, DCG wrote about an epidemic of acid attacks in the UK, especially in London. (See “Acid attacks in the UK now so widespread that public need training in helping victims, warn doctors“).

acid attack victim

Southampton acid attack victim in September 2015/BBC photo

In London alone, the number of attacks increased 73% in a year — from 261 incidents in 2015, to 454 in 2016. In England and Wales, there were more than 400 recorded attacks in the six months to April last year. In fact, the UK has one of the world’s highest rates of recorded acid attacks per capita. Two people have so far died as a result of acid attacks, with many more left with life-changing injuries.

At the time, there were calls for legislation to make the carrying of corrosive substances in the street illegal.

Lizzie Dearden reports for Independent, March 1, 2018, that according to new guidelines published by the Sentencing Council, an agency of the UK’s Ministry of Justice, acid is to be defined as a “highly dangerous weapon” for the first time, allowing judges to impose harsher punishments on anyone found to be carrying it in public:

  • Adults convicted of carrying a corrosive substance in public for a second time will be given a minimum six-month jail term; those under 18 years of age will be handed a four-month detention and training order.
  • Anyone convicted of threatening someone with acid or other “offensive weapons” will receive the same minimum sentences as those convicted of threatening someone with knives.
  • An offensive weapon is defined as “any article made or adapted for causing injury… Or intended for such use”; a highly dangerous weapon can include corrosive substances whose risk goes “substantially above and beyond”.

Some of the most severe assaults have been carried out using sulphuric acid, but police said dozens of different substances have been used in the UK, including some that are not covered by existing bans and voluntary sales restrictions, such as bleach and chemical irritants that can be found in a kitchen cupboard. Police have so far been powerless to identify corrosive substances that are frequently concealed in soft drinks bottles.

Major retailers have signed up to a voluntary ban on sales of dangerous products to under-18s and the Home Office has proposed separate new laws that could bring in punishments for anyone carrying corrosive substances without “a good or lawful reason” and restrict purchases.

The new Sentencing Council guidelines also target knives and other bladed weapons, ensuring people who repeatedly carry them or use them to threaten others are punished severely. New aggravating factors include the “deliberate humiliation” of victims, including filming them or circulating material on social media, and judges will take into account the defendant’s age, maturity, peer pressure or an “unstable upbringing”. Sentencing Council member Rosina Cottage said: “Too many people in our society are carrying knives. If someone has a knife on them, it only takes a moment of anger or drunkenness for it to be taken out and for others to be injured or killed.”

The new sentencing guidelines come amid concern over a series of fatal stabbings in London, including the killing of two victims within two hours last week. The deaths brought the number of fatal stabbings in London to 16 so far in 2018, with five of them teenagers.

Recorded violent crime has been rising across England and Wales. In the three months to September, there were 3,359 offenses of possession of an article with a blade or point, 1,708 of possession of an offensive weapon and 257 of threatening with a knife or offensive weapon that resulted in a caution or sentence.

~Eowyn