by software artist Scott Draves. You may also follow me on google+ or twitter, buy art, or join me on facebook.

September 28, 2007

Oakland cop beats, tasers, then kills.

A tragedy in Oakland. My friend Brad sent the following letter to several newspapers:
Oakland Police: To protect and serve, or to kill?

Gary King, Jr. was murdered on September 20th by Sergeant Pat Gonzales of the Oakland Police Department. According to eyewitnesses, after having complied with an order to approach Gonzales' cruiser, Gary was attacked by Gonzales. Gary attempted to disengage himself from the altercation, but Gonzales beat, stripped, and repeatedly tasered Gary. Gonzales then released Gary, disoriented, hurting, and scared, and pumped two bullets into Gary's back as he fled.

Police claim that a pistol was found in Gary's possession. Whether or not Gary had a pistol, however, is irrelevant — none of the witnesses saw Gary draw a pistol. Gonzales was the only police officer on the scene until after he shot Gary and no witnesses are corroborating his story.

King’s death is not an isolated incident: in 2006, Gonzales shot and paralyzed 17-year-old Ameir Rollins, and in 2002, Gonzales shot and killed 19-year-old Joshua Russell.

Police Chief Tucker acknowledged the abnormality of an officer shooting so many suspects, but isn't questioning Gonzales' claim, universally refuted by witnesses, that Gary was drawing a weapon. OPD wants to protect their own, but Gonzales belongs in prison. Justice must be served.

coverage in indybay, unfit to print, the berkeley daily planet, and KTVU. Can our attention be part of the solution? Posted by spot at September 28, 2007 10:59 PM
Justice must be served Posted by: MCSD at September 28, 2007 11:52 PM
Not only does this Gonzales creep belong in prison, he deserves to be beaten within an inch of his life repeatedly, until blood transfusions are no longer able to keep him alive for the eternal torture he deserves. This scumbag is going to rot in hell, and rightfully so. Murderers do not belong in "our" police force. Posted by: Ryan at September 29, 2007 10:34 AM
i wish there was a hell for people like this to go to. as it is, saying that he is going to "rot in hell" just helps us feel better about not going out and getting justice for these victims this very minute. Posted by: amonkey at September 29, 2007 11:01 AM
The really messed up part is the cops name sounds Hispanic. You'd think they would be the least violent towards other minorities. Corporate Government brainwashing at its best. Fascism is here boys. Maybe its time to stop demanding justice with our mouths from the same system empowering and even encouraging behavior like this. Posted by: whiteguy at September 29, 2007 03:45 PM
Police truly are above the law. Posted by: chad at September 29, 2007 03:52 PM
Oh the humanity....Like we lost another model citizen. How many of you liberal assholes have ever worked in Law enforcement? Were you there? I would buy Gonzales a beer and a video camera for his cruiser. Posted by: a naughty moose at September 29, 2007 03:57 PM
We had a cop murder a retarded kid with the entire indefensible incident caught on tape. His 'punishment' consisted of getting to retire years early (to the tune of $500 a week) and a pathetic 51 days in jail. This won't end until they are held accountable. Posted by: arkie at September 29, 2007 04:04 PM
No doubt he already has a video camera. I havent heard of a police car not having one in about 10 years now. And in a big city like Oakland? Wheres the video? You deserve a bullet in the head moosiepoo. Posted by: whiteguy at September 29, 2007 04:06 PM
Amazing that this happens and keeps happening. What is it going to take for there to be some action against thise sort of thing? And where is the outrage on the news? Posted by: Michael at September 29, 2007 04:16 PM
bad cop, no donut. I hit him to get his attention. I shot him to calm him down. I killed him to reason with him. ~ Henry Rollins Posted by: The Profit at September 29, 2007 04:16 PM
you guys have no idea what the situation is like on the ground. we have 18-year old morons holding people up in broad daylight, beating them up, and leaving them to bleed on the sidewalk. this altercation occurred right next to children's hospital oakland. many hospital patients and workers have been mugged in recent days. i dont like it when a cop kills someone (i grew up in LA and know all about police corruption) but this cop was actually a good guy if people's anecdotes about his prior behavior are to be believed. Posted by: oakland resident at September 29, 2007 04:48 PM
Pics or it didn't happen. Period. You can drive the sheep with claims but not reasonable thinking people. Posted by: Tahko Tetsujin at September 29, 2007 04:56 PM
Just call in Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson. Seems to work all the time. Posted by: The Triz at September 29, 2007 04:56 PM
Land of the free, Home of the Brave ... HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA You guys are a bunch of scared chickens living in a paranoid closed country. afraid of every muslim in the world, and without any basic civil rights at all. Wake up, and stop believing you're living in the best country in the world. i've been to 5 continents already (including north america and the US, and even lived in Nashville for a couple of months) - i saw many, MANY places so far which i can describe as "Much Better then the US". Until then - keep eating the crap that your goverment is shoving down your throat, aperntay you deserve it. Posted by: Nir, Jerusalem, ISRAEL at September 29, 2007 04:59 PM
I call for street justice Posted by: A-MAR at September 29, 2007 05:08 PM
"Gary attempted to disengage himself from the altercation" lol this is such a biased story. Lets hear some eye-witness reports. also... Why did he have a gun? Why was he arrested in the first place? So many questions unanswered here... Posted by: an0malist at September 29, 2007 05:19 PM
Exit Wounds Where are the citizens with camera surveillance of the police? Posted by: Ruff Ryda at September 29, 2007 05:23 PM
I'm sure he got what he deserved. Which ever one of you is a policeman and putting your life on the line every day in an armpit of a city like Oakland, throw the first stone. Posted by: Manny the mower at September 29, 2007 05:51 PM
Um Nir, thank God you left, because America doesn't need another idiot like Paris Hilton. First, the US IISSSS NOrth America! Idiot. We actually do have the best country. Ask yourself why people come here? To have a better life and to actually be what they want, career-wise. I too have traveled the world, and to many more places then you have, I'M SURE OF IT. I'm very cultured and intelligent enough to realize the good things about America. You obviously know nothing about America or Americans. Who said we were scared? We don't even CARE about Islam enough to give a crap about who is or who isn't. We actually have lives to live. Sorry. You are a typical foreigner who is jealous of our pride. You can have your opinions, but it just makes you look realllyyy dumb. Your country can't even get it's shit straight....Muslims and Jews fighting each other like a bunch of spoiled kids. You all will fight till there isn't a dumb soul left. Do something good with your life and fix Israel. Posted by: Angelo at September 29, 2007 06:21 PM
Nir, Anggelo: You both are dumb fucks who should have graduated high school instead of making, in effect, everyone on this post dumber for having read your crap. Neither one of you knows shit about the US from your statements, and still live in make-believe land where we are number 1, and Europeans still live in castles up by the ocean. Wake up man. No one is jealous of American pride, nor American anything for this matter. If anything American pride makes us all look like a bunch of dumb fuck hicks waving the American flag every time we drop a bomb on a family of 10 in Iraq. Posted by: F%*@ The Police at September 29, 2007 06:50 PM
If actually had any intelligence angelo you'd realize the US is fast becoming Nazi Germany. Posted by: whiteguy at September 29, 2007 06:51 PM
I agree with whiteguy. Posted by: Jessmo at September 29, 2007 07:10 PM
North America includes Canada and stuff. It is not the US itself. I agree with the three comments before mine. And that cop should be investigated. Letting him go just to shoot him in the back while he runs? There was definitely something wrong going on. Posted by: RG at September 29, 2007 07:39 PM
I live in Oakland. We need 1000 officers like officer Gonzales. Gary King wasn't "murdered." He was a dangerous thug that was shot because he led a thugs life. He has a typical gangster memorial on the street where he was killed consisting of empty liquor bottles. Fitting as he chose to lead an empty life; preying on others and contributing little to nothing. Good riddance scum. May a 1000 more follow you to the grave. Posted by: ColdC at September 29, 2007 07:44 PM
The signs in the protest pic are obviously photoshopped. GG everyone who buys this story. Posted by: Liro at September 29, 2007 08:55 PM
This IS a real story. I have cross-referenced it to multiple posts from accredited media sources. More importantly, this is part of a GROWING NATIONAL trend in excessive police violence. Worse yet, they want our guns. The people must act soon or we'll end up like the poor folks in Myanmar with nothing but rocks and cameras to defend ourselves with. Click on my name for more details. Posted by: JeremiasX at September 29, 2007 09:03 PM
Really Liro? Several news outlets are reporting on it. Posted by: whiteguy at September 29, 2007 09:08 PM
It's sad to see such a wonderful country just going down the hill in front of our eyes. It's the same problems that repeat themselves and it looks like its piling up like tetris now. Posted by: lolcats at September 29, 2007 09:18 PM
This blog post sounds like it was written by a 4 year old. WTF is this "pumped" informal bs writing. I can't trust a news source such as this, but in the case that this is really true, I do believe this man should rot in hell. Posted by: Ted Danson at September 29, 2007 09:30 PM
Get. Fucking. Real. What are the odds that this guy has been in not one, not even two, but three gun battle altercations in which somebody was either seriously hurt or killed? Of course he was found with a gun on his person, it's the whole 'sprinkle some crack over them' theory that Dave Chappelle brought about in his comedy. Except, in this case, it's not very fucking funny. Oakland maybe a shithole, but it isn't a third-world fucking country the way you guys are making it out to be. There are certain procedures that are usually followed to ensure that a situation doesn't escalate like that, and after getting in one or two of them, I'm sure they send you for re-training in such techniques. Also, I'm thirding White Guy on this one. Except that our Gestapo is the veil of ignorance that we lay over our eyes to hide them from the horrors of reality. Posted by: Reverend Copernicus at September 29, 2007 09:52 PM
angelo: I'm Canadian....and do you know what I love? Talking to Americans that WISH they were Canadian, or WISH they were from another country... they are the Americans with the TRUE smarts... its a shame your president likes being American Posted by: tyguy105 at September 29, 2007 10:38 PM
Please do not use a weak excuse such as "I am a policeman; I am putting my life to protect others". You know what you will be going through when you applied to work as a policeman. The consequences you get, dangers you might encounter but that does not give the policeman the right to kill a defendless man with a weapon. Yes, policeman deserve our respect but not to the point of such actions. If you think otherwise, I think you are better off quitting your job as a law enforcement officer. Period. Posted by: Mikhail at September 29, 2007 11:00 PM
This is not the only incident I've heard of, in 2004 policemen (plural) dragged a guy out of his car and shoot him in the back of his heard, in front of a recorded dash cam, in front of witnesses, and they were fired, but not charged with murder. The guy did not resist, or do anything wrong, he seemed to be randomly dragged out of his car and killed. Apparently if you're a police officer it's not considered murder if you kill someone, especially defendless people. Posted by: Kun at September 29, 2007 11:08 PM
I am a Scotsman living in South Africa and when Apartheid was going on and the Steve Biko murder etc took place by the police, there was public outrage in America. Now that this mindless abuse of authority takes place in your own country, you defend people like this who have taken it upon themselves to be judge, jury and executioner all roled into one ball of human excrement. You have such a beautiful country and really fantastic people, and like all other countries you have problems with renegade police officers and criminals. Murder was committed by this police officer and for that he must be tried before a jury, noit probed by an internal organisation of the police themselves. Posted by: backpack3 at September 29, 2007 11:58 PM
the us is screwed Posted by: ibz at September 30, 2007 01:19 AM
Jails are overcrowded today. So what's the answer? Cops shoot and kill instead of arrest and book. Seems like an easier solution. It's sad that the cops can't get the same treatment. Posted by: Stupid Americans at September 30, 2007 01:32 AM
go to prisonplanet dot comm to read about the expanding police state nation wide, help stop crooked cops by learning their tricks and exposing their corrupt bosses Posted by: jh at September 30, 2007 02:28 AM
Is this America we live in? Posted by: Okinawa at September 30, 2007 04:49 AM
"An illegal arrest is an assault & battery. The person so attempted to be restrained of his liberty has the same right to use force in defending himself as he would in repelling any other assault and battery" State v Robinson 145 ME 77, 72 ATL 260 "Citizens may resist unlawful arrest to the point of taking an arresting officer's life if necessary. Plummer v State 136 Ind 306 Posted by: bored at September 30, 2007 08:13 AM
"An illegal arrest is an assault & battery. The person so attempted to be restrained of his liberty has the same right to use force in defending himself as he would in repelling any other assault and battery" State v Robinson 145 ME 77, 72 ATL 260 "Citizens may resist unlawful arrest to the point of taking an arresting officer's life if necessary. Plummer v State 136 Ind 306 Posted by: bored at September 30, 2007 08:28 AM
How about some info #'s and Emails? So i can call or write my anger to those who need to hear it. Posted by: vince m at September 30, 2007 09:30 AM
whiteguy if you are so unhappy in America please leave. You are probably the same kind of liberal shit that Jane Fonda is. You would speak out against gun ownership for the masses and then have the police come to home while you are holding a gun on a guy caught breaking into your home. As far as the police officer involved, if he wasn't indicted on any former charges, under our justice system he would be innocent. This entire story seems to be an emotional case of dysentery by those who are acting on what others told them instead of hard evidence or proof. Post video, pics or STFU. Posted by: a naughty moose at September 30, 2007 01:35 PM
There is no evidence of any kind presented with this story. This is hearsay. Typically when a cop is attacked several homeboys appear and lie for the street thug. This is routine. The cop got the gun away from the thug and in the struggle shot him. Nice going. Posted by: Bob L at September 30, 2007 05:52 PM
Score one for the good guys. Tough luck for the thug. Posted by: Digby at September 30, 2007 07:12 PM
Certainly does sound a little one sided... Posted by: Bingo Tonight at October 1, 2007 02:18 AM
I think that since there are no facts the jury is still out on this. Oakland is a dangerous place to live in. Most of the decent folk have moved out - those that can that is. Being a cop alone on an arrest is the most terrifying thing I can think of - especially when dealing with someone violent or not cooperating. Posted by: Ollie at October 1, 2007 08:21 AM
I knew the victim. He was a great kid. He had a job, girlfriend, and parents that really love him. He wasn't a thug. It makes me really sad to hear people disparage him based on the one-sided PR account of the OPD. Of course they call him a thug, a murder suspect, and a threat to the community - their job is to protect the department and their officer. But I live in this community. I've seen lots of thugs and lots of bad apples around here. Gary King certainly wasn't one of them. Living here, I see how the police treat young black men. They treat all of them like criminals, even the ones that aren't. Some of them are just trying to do what the rest of us were able to do as kids: hang around with our friends, experiment with drugs, meet girls, etc. But in North Oakland if you aren't afraid of the thugs you are afraid of the police. After a few years as part of this community I've realized exactly how different and how difficult it is to be young, black, and male here. Even the best ones might just end up killed senselessly. Posted by: f at October 7, 2007 11:13 PM
Was this cop tested for steroid use? Posted by: Joe at October 10, 2007 06:26 AM
Oh to be black in America. When I hear stuff like this I thank GOD that Canada is a much more civilized country! I travel to America quite often and I hear more and more Americans wishing they lived in canada. Your country has gone to hell in a handbasket folks. America USED to be the beacon of freedom and liberty in the world, but now thanks to all the no-minds and rightwingers, America has become the symbol of FEAR and REPRESSION. I truly feel sorry for those of you who have not seen the light and still believe that Bush is God, that force is the way to solve problems, and that nuanced, critical thinking means you're the enemy. WAKE UP! You have become the monsters that you were so afraid of. It's like many of you WANT to live in a police state! That is the price of fear. Posted by: WakeUpAmerica at October 10, 2007 11:17 AM
I think that's terrible. Police are supposed to protect, not use excessive force. Posted by: surveillance guy at November 16, 2007 02:56 PM
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