The video shows a 73-year-old woman, clutching wildflowers and her wallet, being thrown to the ground and handcuffed in Loveland, Colo., last year by police officers who suspected her of shoplifting items worth $13.88 from a Walmart.
The woman, Karen Garner, has dementia, a lawsuit says. Repeatedly, she cries out in pain and appears confused, telling officers she was “just going home.” She was pinned against a squad car, and her arm was twisted behind her back, breaking a bone and dislocating her shoulder, the lawsuit says.
After her arrest, she was taken to jail, where she was not given medical help until hours later, the lawsuit says.
Nearly a year later, the filing of the lawsuit and the release of the police body camera footage on April 14 is reverberating through the city, about 45 miles north of Denver, prompting multiple investigations, disciplinary action against the officers and scrutiny of the Police Department’s use-of-force and training protocols.
The district attorney for Larimer County, Gordon P. McLaughlin, said on Monday that, after seeing the video, he had requested a criminal investigation, to be assisted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado and the F.B.I.
Mr. McLaughlin took office in January, after his predecessor dismissed the misdemeanor charges against Ms. Garner, noting her dementia, a court filing shows.
Cops are lying liars who lie. There is no reason to ever believe them about anything at all. This is why body cameras are so important. People have rightfully called these videos, when they come out, as torture porn. They definitely have a point. People can watch the cops kill Black people, let’s say, and some really enjoy that. It’s disgusting. But I also don’t see how we move this conversation forward without the vast numbers of white people who think the cops are ultimately a good force in society being dissuaded of that notion. They will beat and torture and murder you for the fun of it. Even if you are an old white lady.
There’s just no way to reform this institution. It needs to be abolished.