A case that is just one among a number that caused Eric Holder, the US attorney general, to sharply censure the, let's call it, the Cleavageland police department this week, is one where a "John Doe," who is a black man was shot in the chest by a policeman, then handcuffed and fined $100.00.
Doe was driving his Range Rover. Footage from a traffic camera shows Doe slowly reversing his SUV back out on a Clevalgeland street, but then seeming to become blocked by a crowd crossing the street, which was busy as bars emptied following a Mary J Blige concert. The policeman, John Law, said that Doe was reversing in an "excessively fast and out-of-control manner" and had he no choice but to approach the vehicle with a Glock pistol in his hand.
The officer came up to the Rover and attempted to find the ignition keys but, having failed, he "lost his temper," according to Doe. "Then he shot me and dragged me out of my car, blood from the bullet wound seeping through my white T-shirt. Other cops arrived and they cuffed me, " said the black man. "I felt faint. I saw blood coming from my chest. I thought I was going to die right there."
After paramedics arrived, they pleaded with police to release Doe from the handcuffs and he was taken to a hospital where he was treated for a gunshot wound. Doe has been left with thick scars. He takes prescription painkillers and sees a psychiatrist once a month, reduced from a peak of twice a week.
In reporting the shooting, local television news stations described Doe as a "male suspect" and said that John Law had been "forced to open fire during a traffic stop." Although they had access to it, the station did not present a video taken by a bystander that showed the Doe had at least one hand raised when he was shot by the peace officer and that he did not make sudden or unusual movements.
Doe was ultimately charged with a traffic violation and fined $100 plus costs. Law was suspended from work for a day, with a further two days held back barring possible suspension for another disciplinary issue.
John Doe has filed a civil suit against the Cleavageland city for several million dollars.
Nearly $1 billion has been paid over the past decade to resolve claims against the nation's largest police department, the NYPD, according to an investigation by The Associated Press. Cleavageland has only paid millions.
Obviously, dear reader, this is only satire. There is no Cleavageland and no one is named either "John Doe" or "John Law." The events portrayed here could not possibly be factual. They would simply be too preposterous. Right?