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Top court rules against PA on 'excessive force'

Original post made on Mar 13, 2008

The City of Palo Alto could have to pay as much as $500,000 after the California Supreme Court Wednesday refused to hear its appeal on a decade-old police excessive force case.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, March 13, 2008, 6:11 PM

Comments (7)

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Posted by Just Remembering
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 14, 2008 at 9:32 am

Between the Lee and Kan affair, and now this--the cost of the settlements, the outside attorneys, the inside attorneys, the lost time for all concerned has got to be $1.5 to $2.0M dollars of tax-payer funds.

Sadly, these numbers will not be found in the City's published documents about "service" and "quality of service"--they get hidden away and soon forgotten. It's doubtful that any City Council member would be remotely interested in talking about this issue in public--much to easy to say: "forget, it! Time to move on!"

Sad .. so sad ..


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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 14, 2008 at 9:47 am

Neither of these Police Officers are presently employed by the PAPD. One retired long ago and the other has long since moved on to another jurisdiction.


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Posted by Ask The Hard Questions First
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 14, 2008 at 10:22 am

> Neither of these Police Officers are presently employed
> by the PAPD. One retired long ago and the other has
> long since moved on to another jurisdiction.

And your point is?


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Posted by Resident
a resident of Crescent Park
on Mar 14, 2008 at 4:28 pm

The Supreme Court is wrong on this one. Palo Alto shouldn't be paying this guy anything.


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Posted by Resident
a resident of Crescent Park
on Mar 14, 2008 at 4:32 pm

The Supreme Court is wrong on this one. Palo Alto shouldn't be paying this guy anything.


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Posted by Hmmm
a resident of Downtown North
on Mar 16, 2008 at 10:42 am

Hmmm, let's see..Schmidlin was at Lytton Plaza in the early morning hours, cops thought he was drunk in public, and when they asked him his name, he gave them his dog's name. So far, it seems pretty reasonable to think he was drunk. There are lots of drunken people at Lytton plaza in the early morning hours most weekends and telling a cop your dogs name doesn't sound like what most sober people do. The cops then try to arrest him (lie they do with scores of drunken people downtown late at night) and he resists. They overcome his resistance and take him to jail. Most people arrested for the same probably just learn from their mistake or figure it's not worth fighting in court because, after all, they were the bad guy in this one. But because Schmidlin has some money and time, he fights it. It takes a long time, but with money even guilty people can be found not guilty (remember OJ?)

Sigh, I guess the smart mouthed drunk guy hanging out at Lytton Plaza late at night is right and the cops are wrong (sarcasm intended.) I guess the taxpayers will foot the bill on this one. It must be hard to be a cop as it seems in one moment we the public are telling them clean up the streets, get rid of the drunk who urinate on my downtown business, catch that burglar in the Midtown area and the next were making them feel like if they use their Taser or man-handle the resisting drunk guy you may be sued.

Anyway, to provide some balance to this discussion I offer this. Thank you to cops in PA and elsewhere. Thanks for doing your part for civility and I promise to do my part by not being drunk at Lytton Plaza late at night, not telling you my dogs name when you ask for mine, and not resisting you if you have to arrest me. To Schmidlin I say after you're done paying your lawyer, use your profits to buy the PA cops a new police station. :)


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Posted by Shop Downtown
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 18, 2008 at 12:32 pm

This ruling certainly doesn't help those who would like to see Victor Frost removed from Whole Foods Market under the sit/lie ordinance. In fact, it may make the PAPD reluctant to enforce any City code or State law involving the homeless anywhere Downtown, if they can sue the City and win that easily.






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