OK this is related to Open Arms only in that the woman involved was pregnant, but boy oh boy, this story got my blood boiling!
Pregnant woman in front of an elementary school refuses to sign a ticket for doing 32 in a school zone (speed limit 20). She said the person speeding was the car ahead of her, not her, and refused to sign the ticket because she thought it would admit guilt if she signed it. She is tasered not once but three times when she refused to get out of the car and has permanent scars from it.
She argued that under Washington law, the officers had no authority to take Brooks into custody: Failure to sign a traffic infraction is not an arrestable offense, and it’s not illegal to resist an unlawful arrest.
Berzon said the majority’s notion that Brooks obstructed officers was so far-fetched that even the officers themselves didn’t make that legal argument. To obstruct an officer, one must obstruct the officer’s official duties, and the officers’ only duties in this case were to detain Brooks long enough to identify her, check for warrants, write up the citation and give it to her. Brooks’ failure to sign did not interfere with those duties, she said.
Furthermore, Brooks posed no apparent threat, and the officers could not have known how stunning her would affect the fetus, or whether it might prompt premature labor — another reason their actions were inexcusable, Berzon said.
On the heels of the shackling legislation, this really makes me wonder. What is it with people making sure that those pregnant women follow the law or they will be forced in such violent ways?
What do you readers think of this story?