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by Peter Moskos

February 6, 2010

Good Cop

I think Michael Mineo is a liar. I've said it before here and here and I'll say it again. The latest is this, "[A police baton] could not have possibly made the hole in this underwear," said [a defense witness], "This is a square hole."

Seems like pretty damning evidence. At the end of an expandable baton is a round little metal ball (which hurts like hell if you get hit by it). It can't punch out a square hole. (I'd accept a rip, by the way.)

I suppose your opinion comes down to this: which do you think is more likely? That a cop would stick his own baton up a guy's ass or that a two-bit idiot would make up a story to win big in a lawsuit against the police. To me, it's no contest.

Seemed to me it was a good day in court for these officers. It'll feel better when the officers get off.


Jay Livingston said...

f Mineo is lying, then is Officer Maloney also lying? If so, why? My impression was that it's damn near impossible to get one cop to utter damaging testimony against another cop when it's the truth. I'd think that it would be even more difficult when the testimony was false. Or am I mistaken about that? How often do cops testify falsely against another cop?

PCM said...

I don't think Officer Maloney's testimony is actually that damning. Just because the NYT headline said: "Officer’s Testimony Supports Abuse Accusation" doesn't make it so.

Nobody doubts there was a scuffle. That Mineo's pants fell down. And that Mineo was yelling shit.

I think Maloney's account, and I assume he's telling what he believes to be the truth, helps the officers for than it helps Mineo.

According to Maloney, the baton was on Mineo's butt and 1/2 to 1 inch was out of sight and pressed into Mineo's butt crack.

This is not the same as ramming your baton up somebody's ass.

Did Ofc Kern exhibit ideal policing? No. Was it childish and immature? Almost certainly.

After a chase and scuffle, it is not hard to imagine that a baton might end up, well, anywhere. If in this case it was intentional and a cop was making some dumb I'm-going-to-shove-this-up-your-ass "joke," well, it's not funny. But bad humor is not a crime.

Here, to me, is the only real important issue: Did a cop ram a baton into Mineo's ass? And the answer is most certainly no.

Maloney confirms that.

Regarding officers testifying against other cops. The 'n' is pretty low regardless, true or false. So I don't know if any generalizations can be made.

But it does not surprise me at all that an officer would tell the truth (and cover his own ass) before lying to protect officers he does not know. Especially if by doing so you can protect innocent officers and let the chips fall where they may for an officer you think was an asshole.