This morning my son Julian, in Portland, was asleep in his room–and woke up to find a gun in his face. A cop was pointing a gun at him. There were a couple of cops in his room, demanding to see his rental agreement, to know if he were a “squatter”. They’d had reports of squatting meth tweakers in the building, who were stealing gasoline from cars. They were right about the tweakers, but they had the wrong apartment–and they had no probable cause to invade Julian’s apartment without a warrant.
(He’d forgotten to lock the door, foolish in his bad neighborhood. Though it was cops he had to worry about, not burglars, in this case.)
The cops seemed skeptical that Julian was renting the room–he is–and that he was a college student–he is–and even wondered if his school books were stolen. But the cops went away, finally, and Julian’s cat took revenge–it scratched their ankles as they went. Good kitteh.
Portland…”Portlandia”…has a reputation for being liberal. But its liberality notoriously stops at the police. They beat Jim Chasse to death. They pretty commonly shoot unarmed people to death. They’re famous for being thugs.
Sometimes you get a bad police culture, in certain towns. Portland needs to take steps.
(My friend Brett says, “It’s too bad the bad-apple cops make the other 3% look so bad”)