Thursday, July 13, 2017

Stories of Missouri deputies, suggesting Carol broke her own arm by flailing about in patrol car, are a steaming pile of feces -- and here is how we know

Sheriff Jim Arnott and a Greene County (Mo.) patrol car
Four Missouri deputies suggest in written statements about our unlawful eviction in September 2015 that my wife, Carol, broke her own arm. She did that, they hint, by flailing about in the back seat of a patrol car after being handcuffed and arrested, for alleged "assault on a law enforcement officer" -- after the cops had brutalized HER. (See here, here, and here.) They also claim she was screaming and cussing while in the patrol car.

Is any of this remotely true? No, it isn't, and we can point to at least two key pieces of evidence to prove it.

The truth is that Carol's arm already was broken before she was placed in the patrol car. It was broken when three cops surrounded her as she was trying to enter our duplex apartment -- as she had been given permission to do -- to retrieve our cat's litter box. An officer in a blue shirt -- we cleverly call him "Mr. Blue Shirt" -- grabbed Carol from behind, around the shoulders, and slammed her butt-first to the ground. The impact of that body slam might have been enough to cause a concussion. But "Mr. Blue Shirt" (who is not nearly as pleasant as Mr. Blue Sky, of Electric Light Orchestra fame) was not finished inflicting damage. He then yanked on Carol's arms in an upward and backward direction, grabbing and twisting her arms just above the elbow.

That's when her arm was shattered, so severely that it required trauma surgery for repair; regular orthopedic work would not fix it. How do we know the "flailing" story is a steaming pile of excrement?  Here is reason No. 1:

Carol was placed in a seat belt in the patrol car

Carol states unequivocally that cops used a seat belt -- with a shoulder harness -- when they placed her in the back seat of the patrol car. In other words, she was handcuffed with her arms behind her and restrained from her shoulders down. Try putting on handcuffs from behind, with a lap belt and shoulder harness, and see how much you can flail around in the back seat of your vehicle. You will find real quickly that you can't.

I was sitting in our car, which was parked close to the garage in our driveway of the duplex, when this happened. The patrol car was parked in the other driveway of the duplex, behind me and to my right, fairly close to the street. I lost sight of Carol as they put her in the backseat -- she was obscured partly by the vehicle itself and partly because, as I recall, its windows were tinted.

Two points are lodged in my memory as I read the officers' accounts: (1) My windows were rolled down, and I never heard Carol scream or curse at all. In fact, I never heard her cry out when her arm was broken, perhaps because she was in shock (paramedics later treated her with oxygen, which generally is applied to patients who show signs of going into shock) and perhaps because she already had suffered a concussion; (2) I remember, from my own experience being brutalized by cops in Shelby County, Alabama, that they belted me into the backseat to the point I felt like Hannibal Lecter. And that was while the vehicle was sitting still. I sat like that, with pepper spray dripping off of me, for roughly 20-30 minutes while an officer filled out a report before the car ever moved.

If you Google "prisoner transport and seat belts," you will find there has been litigation around the country about instances where prisoners or suspects were injured after officers failed to secure them with seat belts. (See here, here, and here.) Police agencies have paid out lots of money for failing to secure individuals riding in the back of patrol cars.

Our research indicates many police agencies have adopted policies that require officers to use seat belts whenever transporting prisoners or suspects. This is from page 745 of the policies and procedures manual of the Springfield (Mo.) Police Department, which is available online:

All prisoners transported in a police car shall be secured with a seat belt for their safety.

The manual for the Greene County (Mo.) Sheriff's Office disappeared online after I started writing about how the department's handling of Carol's case differed from official policy. We are in the process now of obtaining a hard copy of the manual, and my guess is that it includes a policy that requires officers to use seat belts when transporting prisoners.

If my guess about that is correct, it means the deputies not only are lying in their written statements, but they also violated departmental policy if they did not use a seat belt.

Either way, Carol is not the flailing type -- and she did not break her own arm in the backseat of a patrol car. We will address the second reason we know that in an upcoming post.


Anonymous said...

These cops are too dense to see the giant hole in their story? Good grief!

Anonymous said...

These cops either or lying or they were blatantly negligent for putting Carol into the back seat of a squad car without belting her in. Either way, they are at fault.

Anonymous said...

I seem to recall one of the officers stating that he noticed Carol flailing about and stopped to ask if she was alright, so he checked her handcuffs, but still did not belt her in. Jeez, Louise!

legalschnauzer said...

@10:39 --

Yes, that was from Deputy Scott Harrison, the same guy who claimed I had made a threatening 911 call, the same guy who pointed an assault weapon at my head. Here are his exact words:

"As I exited the residence, I heard Carol yelling/screaming, and then noticed she was throwing herself against the backseat and cage of my patrol unit. She did this multiple times in the time it took me to walk back to the vehicle and open the back passenger door. I asked Carol if she was alright. Carol yelled at me to take off the handcuffs and stated that her wrists were hurting. I had Carol lean forward and I checked the handcuffs for comfort again. I was still able to place a finger between the handcuffs and Carol's wrist."

Anonymous said...

Lying bastards.

Anonymous said...

Gee, officer, maybe Carol was screaming because you and your buddies had just shattered her arm into umpteen pieces. Did you ever think of that? Duh!

Anonymous said...

When it is realized that she did not break her own arm, who are they going to blame, the tooth fairy, the easter bunny, or Casper the not so friendly ghost? Insanity!!!

Anonymous said...

These cops aren't very talented liars. Maybe they should try another profession, like grave digging.

Anonymous said...

You often do not like my posts, but I think the cage bang hypothesis is utter bullshit too. Her arm was probably broken before she got in the car, from the force of the fall when they pushed her down, and she automatically braced with her hand, or fell on the elbow itself. has info on this type of fracture in layperson accessible language.

Her doctors who did the ortho repair would be able to speak about the likely cause of this injury.

Anonymous said...

Carol has some thinning of her bones to make her more likely to suffer this injury; the defense could not be that she is more likely to be injured than an average person though (you might have heard of the "eggshell skull" rule) - there only defense is that the use of force was necessary and justified.

legalschnauzer said...

@2:01 --

What makes you think Carol has "thinning of the bones"? She's never been diagnosed with such a condition. Neither the doctors who diagnosed the break, her surgeon, or her physical/occupational therapists made any mention of such a condition. I assume you are pulling this from your anal cavity.

How, pray tell, can one argue with a straight face that a force sufficient to produce a comminuted break, crushing Carol's arm into dozens of pieces, was necessary in this case? Carol didn't have a gun, a knife, a fork, a spoon. The cops claim she was emotional, but I don't recall any claim that she was threatening them. And the cops were unlawfully on the premises on 5-6 different grounds. You would be emotional, too, if thugs were ransacking your house, with no lawful grounds for doing so.

Let's get serious here.

legalschnauzer said...

@1:56 --

I don't necessarily have a problem with your comments. They usually are filled with a level of arrogance that suggests only you can know what happened in a given situation -- that you know more about what happened than someone who was there and saw the whole thing, like me.

For the 87th time, Carol did not "fall." She was body slammed to the ground, by a cop who grabbed her from behind. She landed on her butt, not on her hand, not on her elbow. She didn't see the guy coming from behind and had no chance to brace herself at all. She wasn't pushed, she was "slammed" to the ground, about as hard as you can slam somebody, likely hard enough to create a concussion. And her arm was broken when the slamming cop grabbed both of her arms, while she was seated on the ground, and yanked on them viciously in an upright and back direction, grabbing and twisting just above the elbow, where the arm was broken.

The No. 1 cause of a comminuted break is trauma, as in a car wreck, not a fall. Again, this has been explained to you repeatedly. Not many people have the kind of arrogance that allows them to shrug off an eyewitness account of what really happened, in favor of their own version, which is based on nothing more than supposition. I've seen lawyers with that kind of arrogance, and I suspect you are a lawyer with a special interest in this case, probably because you helped make the bogus eviction happen.

Anonymous said...

Im not arguing that it was necessary. I'm saying they will, which you know is true, they will argue that.

Speak to the docs re x-rays, don't take my word for it. You do know already she's postmenopausal and has a thyroid condition, which you can look up and see for yourself are associated with some demineralization. Her bones are not as strong as they once were, and that's a fact. What *isn't* a fact is that it gets anyone off the hook for hurting her. If they were wrong to knock her down, they caused all her damages whether she was susceptible or not.

"An uncontrolled acceleration to the ground" is a fall, even if someone makes you fall. If a cirminal comes and knocks you down, you fall. Just please get past your definition and try to understand what I'm saying.

You have this ide fixe that it was caused by yanking. It almost certainly wasn't, it doesn't cause that type of fracture, a fall does. It can result from any fall where a person lands on the elbow or braces with the hand (an unconscious protective reflex movement) It can even be a minor fall in a susceptible person.

take the point that helps you if nothing else - thrashing in the car didn't cause it.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Slide 12

Although Carol is not at a greatly advanced age, she is in the profile of the older patient, and the common cause of this injury in older (vs subpopulation of young persons) people is a relatively low-energy fall. Being pushed so that she is made to fall, is this type of injury.

I'm trying to tell you that it did not happen in the car.

legalschnauzer said...

@3:48 --

A few thoughts:

(1) I don't care what they will argue. The fact is they had no lawful grounds to be on the property. Their presence violated the 4th Amendment in multiple ways. Their actions weren't necessary because their mere presence was unlawful. They know that, and so do you. They can try to argue this or that, but they can't explain away this fact: They had no lawful grounds to be on the property.

(2) We have spoken to the docs re: the X-rays. Never have they said Carol has thinning bones that contributed to her injury -- not once. You like that narrative because it serves your agenda, which is to protect Cowherd, Arnott, and yourself. Also, it's a sexist argument, and you are a sexist. No wonder you find the argument period.

(3) Carol didn't have an "uncontrolled acceleration to the ground." It was "controlled," by the cop who slammed her. You like that bogus definition of a fall because it tends to put some blame on Carol for being brutalized. Again, it serves your agenda.

(4) Your arrogance knows no boundaries. I SAW what happened. I was THERE; you were not. The cop grabbed her right above the elbow and yanked/squeezed/twisted her arm with a level of viciousness that it shattered. That's called trauma, and that's what usually causes these types of breaks. That's why it required trauma surgery. Carol didn't land on her elbow or brace with her hand and she's not a "susceptible person." No matter how many times you repeat that doesn't make it so. It only shows that you have a dog in this hunt, and you are trying to present a twisted narrative that serves your own selfish purposes. Like most lawyers, you have zero interest in justice. You only care about protecting your buddies and yourself.

(5) I'm not interested in the "point that helps me." I'm interested in the facts and the law. Those are what really help me. They hurt you and your buds, which is why you try to avoid the facts and the law and make up your own stuff.

(6) Funny that you admit the cops are liars, but you still try to protect them. As Trump would say, "Sad."

legalschnauzer said...

@3:51 --

The article at your URL doesn't say a word about what causes these types of injuries. The following article does, saying that most are caused by "a high-energy event," such as trauma.

The fracture typically occurs when there is a force applied to upper limb when the joint is flexed more than 90 degrees.

legalschnauzer said...

Carol's injury is described in her medical records as "a markedly comminuted intra-articular fracture involving the distal humerus."

It's also described as "a comminuted supracondylar fracture of the distal left humerus."

One doctor stated the injury occurred when "she was being handcuffed."

legalschnauzer said...

@3:59 --

I don't need you to tell me it didn't happen in the squad car. I've already written multiple posts about that. I also saw what happened, and I've talked numerous times about what happened with Carol. Her arm was broken when a cop grabbed it and yanked on it viciously, while she was seated on the ground -- to which she was slammed and did not "fall." after a cop we call "Mr. Blue Shirt" attacked her from behind; she didn't even see him coming.

A doctor says in medical records that the arm was broken while Carol was being handcuffed. That's based partly on what Carol told him and partly on what he saw from the X-rays. The victim herself has said umpteen times that her arm was broken while she was being handcuffed.

I suppose you know more about what happened than Carol does? Sheesh!

e.a.f. said...

flaying around in the back seat so violently as to break one's arm, ya right. For that you need a certain level of core strength, which I would suggest Carol doesn't have. Not wishing to suggest Carol isn't in good physical condition, but you get my drift. To rock yourself back and forth and side to side takes a lot of strength and energy. I suspect Carol and you are post 50. Unless you are working out 5 days a week and sporting a six pack a professional body builder would envy, you just don't hve the strength to do what those slimy cops are suggesting Carol did.

Come to think of it a few years ago when some crack and meth was being sold in Great Vancouver, B.C. addicts had incredible bursts of energy and it sometimes took 6 cops to be able to get them in an ambulance where they would remain until they came down outside the hospitals they were taken to. Now they would throw themselves around, but interestingly enough none of them broke legs, arms, ribs, etc. So if drug crazed young guys weren't breaking anything I really don't know how they think a middle aged woman could break her own arm.

Those cops are full of shit and can't even get a good lie going. At least in Canada if there is police brutality they just say they fell.