Wednesday, April 3, 2013

This is Why We Can't Have Nice Things, Part III or You Mean it PAYS to cross the Thin Blue Line?

Ohh, where to begin with this one?

Well, we can start with the sad fact that the best, most objective and most in depth reporting on the above case wasn't any local or national news, but some downtown LA news website I've never heard of. They make a great point that establishes some context as to why this case is utter bullshit,
One veteran LAPD official with close knowledge of Central Division, who requested anonymity because they were not authorized to comment, maintained that the office is not rife with racism or sexual harassment.
"There was no maliciousness," the official said. "What's very common within police departments is there's a kind of a tête-à-tête that goes on between people, and it's kind of what you would call, not from a racial standpoint, but black humor. There's a joking, a self-effacing humor that goes on that in many respects is tolerated, and in many effects is tit for tat and recognized as humor." 
Fuck, I don't know how I'd have made it ten years (let alone ten months) without the ability to joke about shit in some of the most politically incorrect, crudest and darkest ways possible. This job is fun, but it's also dangerous and you see and experience shit the average American just never will. Lots of times you have to let off steam. You can be irresponsible and abuse alcohol or you can tell some off color jokes that are funny, but out of context in a courtroom will have an LA jury clutch at their pearls, gasp in horror and award a seven figure settlement.

One thing you didn't see reported anywhere, was the defendant's star witness never testified because he was too busy being arrested and booked for a home invasion burglary. Alleged burglar Daigle was a supervisor at Central Division who wasn't chosen to head the Community Relations Office. Instead that position went to Sgt Foster. Daigle's finances were a mess and he was desperate for a payoff and was willing to throw Foster under the bus. He couldn't wait for this trial to conclude, and in true deus ex machina fashion he commits a crime before he can testify against his nemesis Foster.

Surprisingly, the LA Times didn't do a completely awful job of reporting. They put in witness testimony that the plaintiff (Earl Wright) was a willing participant in the shenanigans. Between the lines, it's clear that it wasn't until the defendant saw the possibility of getting his thirty pieces of silver that he began to cry he was harassed and humiliated.

No good deed goes unpunished. No one was going to celebrate the defendant's 20 years with the department. Sgt Foster insisted on buying a cake because he felt bad that no one was going to recognize the defendant's truly significant milestone. In the LA Times piece, it is a fellow black officer who testified that it was he who put the watermelon and fried chicken on the cake. I suppose Sgt Foster shouldn't have bought a cake in the first place, then? I suppose he should have forgotten Wright and worried about himself. Maybe then Foster would have his job and his marriage.

Oh yeah, Foster's wife didn't believe in "'til death do us part" and as soon as he was in professional trouble she separated and began sleeping with a supervisor (a captain maybe? I can't get a straight answer). It's like a regular Joseph Wambaugh novel with this one!

Please pray for the good-hearted, yet dark humored Foster. He didn't deserve this, and there's serious talk within City Hall that they're getting a hold placed on Wright's judgement. Hopefully Foster will land on his feet, and may everyone else get exactly what they deserve.

No comments:

Post a Comment