Union criticizes continued city attention on pepper spray incident

Union criticizes continued city attention on pepper spray incident

The union that represents Champaign police issued the attached release on Wednesday.


News-Gazette.com embraces discussion of both community and world issues. We welcome you to contribute your ideas, opinions and comments, but we ask that you avoid personal attacks, vulgarity and hate speech. We reserve the right to remove any comment at our discretion, and we will block repeat offenders' accounts. To post comments, you must first be a registered user, and your username will appear with any comment you post. Happy posting.

Login or register to post comments

Beem wrote on December 07, 2011 at 4:12 pm

Poorly written press release. Not that I don't agree with what it is saying but it's just not written very professionally. "Carter" is not named previously before using just his last name in a sentence that starts out "Guess it depends ..."

cretis16 wrote on December 07, 2011 at 7:12 pm

The mayor is gonna keep investigating till he gets the result he wants....3 down and god knows how many more to go...

parkmymeterelsewhere wrote on December 07, 2011 at 5:12 pm

Obviously the city staffers view themselves as exempt from politeness and etiquette in issuing formal, sincere apologies for their extremely poor judgement; they hold themselves unaccountable and higher and mightier than all the rest of Us.

read the DI wrote on December 07, 2011 at 10:12 pm

Looks like we all know who can't take the heat -- the cops and the fire watchers. Their reactions have been priceless.

Mike wrote on December 07, 2011 at 10:12 pm

Many of the rest of us "in the public" (i.e., the people that elect the people that employ you, and those whose taxes pay your salaries) CRITICIZE the CONTINUED USE of pepper spray.

Stop spraying pepper spray all over the place, and we taxpayers, and citizens of the United States, will quit COMPLAINING about you coppers spraying pepper spray all over the place.

How hard is it for two cops to detain a college kid who is jaywalking, even if he is with a group of 20 other people who are jaywalking that they aren't profiling.

Cops need to stop thinking that they are in control of our world. WE taxpayers are in control of our world. And WE taxpayers are sick of overweight, lazy cops spraying pepperspray all over the place and then arguing that it was necessary for their safety. 

For crying out loud.  There are muggings and all sorts of other criminal activity in Champaign that can't be corrected, yet our law enforcement is busy pepper-spraying students on campus who may have walked against the light. Seriously? 

We taxpayers won't go away. And we won't shut up. Quit with the pepper spray already. Learn how to do your job without spraying people with that stuff. 

read the DI wrote on December 08, 2011 at 7:12 am

+1. Although be careful what you wish for. The last time the cops *didn't* use pepper spray on a black youth, they shot and killed him instead.

bluegrass wrote on December 08, 2011 at 9:12 am

Hmmm, correct me if I'm wrong here, but I think what you're trying to say is that you don't like the pepper spraying.  Did you get pepper sprayed at you when you were a kid or something, that caused some kind of pepper spray phobia?


I guess we could do away with the pepper spraying, and go back the the good ole days of a nice, sharp baton blow to the lower back or the back of the knees.  Ahh, those were the days, huh Mike?

read the DI wrote on December 08, 2011 at 1:12 pm

How about None of the Above? Try working the neighborhoods all the time, as opposed to showing up a few hours (or days!) after a crime has been committed, then knocking heads like a Neandrethal in order to beat a "confession" out of a black youth.

Mike wrote on December 11, 2011 at 3:12 am

Trying to pick a fight, eh? No, I've never been pepper-sprayed. 

How about instead of pepperspray OR baton blows to the lower back we instead ask our lawmakers to get rid of the silly law that prevents citizens from legally videotaping officers who are on duty. 

As they always tell us, "if you're not doing anything wrong, what's the problem with being videotaped?" If the cops aren't "doing anything wrong" why is it such a problem that they are videotaped while they work? Oh, maybe it's because they KNOW that they often do things they shouldn't and don't want there to be any evidence of it. 

Seriously--there is no reason whatsoever that we citizens shouldn't be allowed to videotape police officers who are on duty. We pay them. They work for us. 

I'm all for a secure society, but giving the mostly-uneducated police force total control over all of us with no repercussions for them when they do something wrong is completely ridiculous. They are public servants. 

They don't want to be videotaped because they don't want to be criticized for their bullying. Plain and simple. Now if you don't mind, I'm going to go spray some pepperspray in my face and then go to bed--I hear it makes one sleep better.

Yatiri wrote on December 08, 2011 at 12:12 am

Why is it always the Champaign Police?  Doesn't Urbana have similar problems?

spangwurfelt wrote on December 08, 2011 at 8:12 am

Urbana has a Citizen's Police Review Board.

Fromthearea wrote on December 08, 2011 at 8:12 am

I'll take pepper spray over getting beat by the club or shot at with a rubber or real bullet any day of the week.

Then again, I guess I'd have to do something to put myself in that situation in order to have that happen now wouldn't I?

Seriously, what do we expect police to do?  Hand out stickers at the end of every traffic stop that doesn't end horribly?  Write our parents notes for them to sign when we as grown adults physcially assault them while they're at work?  

I think it's good that they don't use MORE force, I imagine more force would most likely hold up in court and then where would we be.  With the exception of that kid who was shot, we've had it pretty good around here as far as police go in my opinion, and for the record I have been through the justice system, several times, when I was younger.   I have my beefs with it, but being older and having my own family to watch out for I understand, we NEED police!  Are they always polite?  NO!  You wouldn't be either if you had to deal with rapists, wife beaters, drunks, and child abusers all day long, screaming obscenities, puking everywhere and trying to pick fights with you.  HAVE SOME COMPASSION! Put yourselves in their shoes!  

It's the men running around town beating people up, robbing people and raping women that we need to worry about. Let the police mace them if they need to subdue them.  I'd like to start hearing about more effective suggestions for dealing with prospective criminals besides "start a police revue board".  What on earth does that do to protect the local citizens from the increased crime in the area?  To me the whole thing sounds like a vindictive waste of time.  Let these guys do their jobs.

hd2006 wrote on December 08, 2011 at 10:12 am

He is a good idea for all the police in Champaign. There are many people that feel they can perform your job without using any type of force, so why not let them. Next time the 911 call comes in of a large fight or similar such crime, just sit back and let it all play out. You can call the EMT’s in when it’s over to clean up the mess. You have no legal obligation to step in and put yourselves in harm’s way. 

The Supreme Court of the United States ruled in Warren v. DC that the police have no duty to protect any citizen not in custody, and cannot be sued for their failure to protect to step in and assist anyone.  

Maybe the mayor or Steve Carter will get out of bed at 2 a.m. and deal with the issue. 



peabody wrote on December 08, 2011 at 12:12 pm

That "statement" sounded like an angry rant. The correct way to refer to someone on first reference is by their full name and title, not "Carter." And as someone pointed out, starting a sentence in a formal document with "Guess it depends..." deflates any sense of professionalism that the message might have carried. The police are among the few members of this society with a license to batter, arrest, and kill a person, if necessary. Why can't they get used to the idea that they're going to be subject to a little more scrutiny than most?

Daxndata wrote on December 08, 2011 at 3:12 pm

Very unprofessional press release.  It seems as if the union is getting tired of trying to come up with excuses for the Champaign Police officers.  That cop waslooking for an excuse to abuse that man.  Pepper spraying a guy for jay-walking? RIDICULOUS!  PATHETIC even!  Do you really need to pepper spray a guy that you CLAIM to be arresting (I didn't hear anything about being arrested on the video) for jay walking?  Perhaps a violent offense, yes, but Jay walking...NO!  And not just NO!...HELL NO!!!!!  We do not need a police officer or police force that condones oe allows the behavior demonstrated on the video in question.  We need police officers that realise their place as public servants.  Servants to ALL in the public.  It is not the place for the police to determine the guilt and therefore the treatment or punishment of any particuler person that interests them at any point in time.  There is a reason why we have Judges on the payroll in this country.  All in all, the bottom line is that it was not necessary to detain this man, let alone spray him with pepper spray for a non-violent offense.

Local Yocal wrote on December 10, 2011 at 3:12 am
Profile Picture

The unprofessionalism of the rant/press release, the theme of wasting tax dollars on investigating the police, and the continued obsession over Martel Miller leads one to believe that this press release is written by your perpetual candidate for coroner: retired police officer Mark Medlyn. His calls into WDWS are exactly the same as this press release.

As for the actual content: if you got nothing to hide, then you won't mind more scrutiny/vindication. You just gotta love the FOP has finally identified what the real problem is with the June 5th arrest: "...who violated the admonition to keep the tapes confidential,..."

Now everbody just move along and quit looking at the police officer slamming the handcuffed Kid's face against the hood of the squad car at 11:53 on the tape.