I tried to discuss this on twitter (bad idea) and got nothing but the high dudgeon sanctimony police on my ass, so I will try it here and see what you all think. First things first, I never thought what Lewandowski did was appropriate, I think from the get go he was lying and that Fields was telling the truth, and I never for once doubted she was injured- those bruises speak for themself.
What did surprise me, though, was that this action raised to the level of a criminal battery charge. Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve seen things like that happen a hundred times in a night in a bar and no one flinched. Not just guys grabbing girls, but girls doing it to girls, guys grabbing guys, etc. I honestly had no idea that that level of physical violence, while not appropriate and everyone should just fucking keep their hands to themselves, raised to the level of being prosecutable and worth a year in jail.
Am I the only one who has seen this stuff happen a lot and never been charged? And don’t get me wrong, I am fine with it being a crime and I love that it is happening to Trump. Hell, watch any video of a protest and you can watch cops do this or something similar a dozen times to protesters just standing somewhere.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
very bad, and it doesn’t matter what “this” is.
Its because there is a video/photographic record. Unimpeachable evidence.
Villago Delenda Est
Lewandowski is an unrepentant goon ass. Fuck him. His actions were totally inappropriate, and it IS appropriate that he be charged for them.
It’s all about the context and the obvious malice of the perpetrator, John. He wasn’t grabbing someone at a bar.
Probably not, as long as you were only watching and not participating.
From what I read in the previous thread, it’s Florida law that gives no margin for this. I imagine this must be because of the large elderly population: manhandling of even modest amounts would be a problem.
Maybe what this means is that this sort of thing doesn’t get prosecuted anywhere near as much as it should be.
I thought the reporter filed charges of assault.
As one of the high dudgeon sanctimonious police on Twitter, I will reiterate here that I’ve never seen that in a bar, and that your “average” is my “never seen it”.
I’ll add here that the people who play lawyers and cops on the internet are out in full force today.
I see it as not all that different from managing a middle-school classroom. Context and who commits it on who matters. No, that’s not a perfect example of blind justice at all and if you want to get ticky-tacky about how we should apply laws and in what circumstance, it matters. But when a very public person performs an act of low level violence in broad daylight, then lies about it, that’s pretty much demanding a police/criminal response.
Worse shit happens in front of every big box store on every single Black Friday. But like you, John, I’ve got no problem with it being a crime since yanking people around violently should be against the law. Also, that same henchman has been filmed roughing up protesters. I suspect he gets off on this shit.
JC, anybody who has been in a bar without ferns or has gone to a concert where there is a Harley area in the parking lot has seen this.
And no, this doesn’t make sense. To be clear, we wouldn’t have any police at all if unprovoked shoving of noncombatants were actually grounds for arrest.
So, I’m a bit troubled by it The only thing that persuades me that this isn’t bad is that this means they are enforcing the laws against violence in an environment where politics is tipping into violence. To invoke Richard Mayhew’s alternate profession, this is a red card issued midway through a very violent game, to try to avoid broken legs in the future.
I’ve seen it. Hell I’ve seen fights where no one was charged; the participants just left after being separated. I guess I’ve just not been hanging out at the right bars?
@Jane2: I haven’t seen it either. I must have had led a more genteel life than JC.
Given the evidence, the law, and the context, I think it’s appropriate. ‘Trump Campaign manager manhandles female journalist in public’ violates a long list of norms– and enforcing norms is what policing and law enforcement are mainly about.
I think most of this pushing/grabbing crap goes nowhere normally due to a lack of evidence beyond she-said, he-refutes, or versa-vice. This DB got his comeuppance b/c it was recorded and he’s of national celebrity. Those 2 things make this a bigger deal than Billy Joe and Willy Pete fighting in a dive bar in Morgantown over who’s got more tooth in his mouth.
Kay (not the front-pager)
I have seen people do things that technically are crimes, and not get charged with them. Lots of people do things that, technically, are crimes, and never think that they might be charged. Lewandowski would never have been charged in this case if he had only been a marginally decent human being and apologized. That’s all the reporter ever wanted. She only reported it to the police when, instead of apologizing and maybe saying he hadn’t meant to hurt her and didn’t realize he had pulled on her that hard, Lewandowski said it never happened. He then went on to trash her reputation, accusing her of being delusional and of previously exaggerating to attract attention.
I agree with JFL above that the problem began with trying to discuss something on the tweeter machine.
As for the substance, AFA non-lawyer me can figure it out, what could be construed as minor violations of assault and battery laws happen all the time in bars, parking lots, roadsides, paths and byways. The question is when does harm caused by these things rise to level that investigation and prosecution is worth anyone’s while.
I think it reasonable that different standards apply to interactions between law enforcement and civilians, law enforcement and the press, politicians (and their agents) and the press at official campaign events, etc.
I remember dealing with a sleazy landlord who conspired with a sleazy lawyer to try to cheat me out of my rights in a non-cause eviction. My lawyer said if I wanted to risk 15 or 30 K in court costs there was a lot we could do that would make their lives very interesting. I decided I didn’t want to risk it. He asked me if he could hint around about stuff he could do to get them to budge. I gritted my teeth and said OK, and suddenly I got a fair deal that was close enough to what I was entitled to that I felt OK about it.
Stuff like that happens all the time with the law, which I think some wise person said was an ass.
At least this thread separates the commentariat into 1) hangs out in dive bars and 2) has more dignity than that.
The legal definition of “battery” is very broad. In principle I’m OK with that, because the alternative prescriptivist approach always ends up being full of loopholes and unintended effects, but of course it does create potential for frivolous or harassing application of the law. Does this case qualify? By all accounts, the severity of the contact was disproportionate to any threat or need. Without provocation, he acted in a way intended and expected to cause pain to another. I’d say that’s enough for him to spend a few days picking up litter by the side of the highway or something, though actually throwing him in jail would be as disproportionate as the original offense.
In GA where I work as a police officer basically any unwanted touching is simple battery, even if it doesn’t leave a mark. leave a mark and its battery, leave a scar or loss of use of limb etc it’s aggravated battery. For simple assault you don’t even have to make contact with someone, just put them in fear of being imminently struck and injured.
And I’m not even talking about bars near Army bases when I was in the military.
This is the sort of tool that you don’t want to give to prosecutors. Because it’ll be used a zillion times against kids engaged in protests for every time that it’s used against a target like this guy, among other things.
That’s what I thought.
Like John, I’ve seen a lot of this sort of thing and no one bats an eye. But if the victim files charges, or in this case “a report” and there is in fact video evidence and a much discussed event, well, I’m not prepared to say they HAVE to move forward, but they have to do SOMETHING, even if it is all hand waving and wrist slapping.
DLew On Roids
I must be hanging out in the wrong bars. I’ve never seen this stuff.
It’s hard to see how the authorities could avoid charging him, given that it fits the definition of battery, it on video, and is a highly publicized case. What do you say if you don’t charge him? “We decided, ‘Eh, F it.'” That doesn’t fly.
My money’s on the Rand Paul goon who curb-stomped the woman protester walking among us a free man, who probably shows the video to buddies on drinking night (i.e., the days ending in “y”). It’s very helpful to make examples of bullies, particularly when actual laws are actually broken.
Also, ‘seen it in bars’… Well, so have I. And as I dimly recall, the participants were generally all drunk at the time.
Ha. More like (1) admits to hanging out in dive bars, (2) doesn’t admit it.
” I guess I’ve just not been hanging out at the right bars? ”
If Baud! 2016! is hanging around in high class bars, might be fatal to the campaign (such as it pathetically is). The base won;t like it at all. If you are pulling stunts like that, best to keep it quiet.
As a defense attorney — I hate this. As a democrat, I’m enjoying it. And the twitter wars this has evoked have been quite amusing.
Had he apologized, I’m sure she would never have filed a police report.
Also it matters if the person struck or touched wants to press charges. Unless it’s family violence because then if there are marks and a primary aggressor can be identified the police officer is required to be the complainant. In the reporter case, she wanted to press charges PLUS there was physical evidence (video, marks) so PC definitely existed. Most likely he’ll get mild probation and have to get anger management counseling or something.
Lotta Dump Trump news today…huh
so haven’t I been saying for awhile that Trump never wanted to be Prez?
http://www.xojane.com/issues/stephanie-cegielski-donald-trump-campaign-defector via @xojanedotcom
1. As a technical matter of law any non-consensual intentional touching is “battery.”
2. Most people in most situations, will not go the trouble of a criminal complaint since that is almost as much a hassle for the complainant witness as for the perpetrator. Especially if you get an apology or the bouncer clears the guy from the bar.
3. This situation took place at work, and ultimately cost the woman her job and there was no apology (what a surprise, eh). Once the victim makes a criminal complaint then the police must follow through. (A great scene in the Maltese Falcon where Sam Spade slugs Peter Lorre and takes his gun away and Mary Astor begins to torture him and threatens to shoot him. The police come to the door and Sam greets them and when they ask to come in he says “no, not without a warrant.” Then Peter Lorre starts screaming and the police come in. Peter Lorre starts saying all the mean things done to him when Sam reminds him that he pulled a gun on him earlier in the evening “and you can swear out a complaint and we can swear out a complaint…” and Lorre thinks better of it.)
Major Major Major Major
Basically my read, yeah.
if you have a victim that wants to charge and video, more likely to be charged.
In the bar-fight context, experienced cops learn to say the words “do you want to press charges” in a way that makes it clear that there is only one correct answer.
This is a very different context.
I’ve been married 20+ years. If my wife, at any point, got bruises from a man grabbing her I would either have to chat with him, or get the police involved. Which is one very clear reason we have police, so morons like me don’t go around trying to take justice into their own hands.
Accidents are fine. But if you’re manhandling people, fuck you. I can’t believe this is even a debate.
It reached the criminal system with charges because in a public political campaign setting, the alleged victim (Fields) has much more incentive + favorable opportunity to make a cause out of the matter by pursuing that avenue than is usually the case in common bar situations like those you cite – combined with the fact that the local prosecutor’s office risks lots of blowback if they seem to blow off a high-profile incident like this that was caught on camera and DOES technically constitute criminal battery, even though in most other situations, the involved folks (including the recipient) would likely respond with perhaps a few rude words, and then let it go.
Note that I am NOT saying here that Fields doesn’t have a legitimate case – she technically does have a quite sound case against Lewandowski, and YES he acted like a pig, but among the key reasons she’s pursuing it so publicly and formally is that the alleged perp is Trump’s campaign manager.
I’ve seen dozens of “almost fights” that looked similar back in my youth when I frequented less savory establishments. Something happens, people glare at each other, but no one wants get thrown out of the bar, so everyone just settles back into their corners. That said, I agree with Tim C; context matters. That’s one thing in a dive biker bar; it’s something else in supposedly professional circumstances.
@Lamh36: I can’t decide if this article is true and if not, is it a troll of if it is , why aren’t we hearing more about it?
a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q)
@John Cole: The difference between this (among many) is that when similar events happen at large gatherings of in drinking establishments, both parties may lack credibility due to intoxication, as might any witnesses. Absent serious injury, no one wants to get LEO involved – and often don’t even with such injury.
Occasionally a grabber gets a response that provides him with the short end of the encounter and is happy to pretend none of it ever happened. Not that I have much personal experience with any of that, mind you.
But this was at a professional event, with security footage and assholes on the assailants team who went full gaslight and misogynistic bullying after the fact. An acknowledgement/apology might have gotten it quickly out of the news, but that ain’t the way Trump rolls. So here we are. She says with the gleam in her eye than many junkies will recognize.
@Lamh36: Trump may not have felt he would really win last year, so naturally he set his sights lower. But now? So close to the nomination and he could win? Trump’s strategist is fooling herself here. He’s winning easily the Republican nomination against an opponent who nobody really likes and is about to get his shot at real history.
Sure, he’s been on tv. Yes, he’s rich. But this is bigger and historic, the kind of lasting fame he could never get before. Win or lose, he’s made history: people wil remember him. He’s not going to quit.
Forget it, John. It’s Politics Town.
Shit, I’ve seen worse manhandling at a WalMart during a holiday sale.
You’re confusing “things I’ve seen people get away with” with “things you can be charged for because it was witnessed, filmed and the person you did it to sued your ass, presented evidence and the prosecutor deemed it actionable.
Frankly, a lot of shit goes down without charges that probably should have charges.
Maybe I’m misremembering, or possibly thinking of someone else, but wasn’t Corey Lewandowski very briefly a cop somewhere? Or at least went through LEO training before changing his mind? I’m sure I saw something about this bit of his background in the last few weeks. Does this sound familiar to anyone else?
This has t remind me of the morning I was in the rental car line at Midway. One African American woman working the counter at 20+ people in line. A dud way back kept loudly harassing the rental lady and finally I said ” this really isn’t going to help, why don’t you just let her do her best”. The dude said some smart ass shit to me and I went ballistic. I never touched him but got in his ass verbally and he started that “assault” shit. I told him he need to get his fucking mommy if the was going to pull that shit. There were cops who cam by after it was over but the punk (I’m sure he was a lawyer) never said shit. Sometimes you do the wrong thing for the right reason I guess.
@Cmm: More than once I’ve seen cops at Georgia football games just let drunken idiots fight it out.
I think if he’d simply apologised it would not have mattered so much. Instead, he said she lied and the right wing trashy site she works for also turned against her. At that point she almost had to file charges to prove what happened, otherwise she’d be branded a liar. Talk about insult to injury! How idiotic is the Trump gang that in every situation they take an attack posture and make the situation much worse. There’s never any attempt to defuse or resolve any issue. If Trump becomes president I’m betting we’ll be at least in three wars before his first year in office.
The bonus here is that we get to see Trump make a fool of himself by defending Lewandowski because the Trump credo is never admit and always play offense.
@SiubhanDuinne: According to Adam L Silverman — one year as a cop in NH (?) — take the source for what you will.
Having spent a large part of my late teens and early/mid-20s as a bartender, I can tell you I saw similar things many times. However, if I was seeing it, cops were being called. I didn’t put up with any nonsense in my bar.
@Brachiator: Don’t get me started on things I’ve seen and experienced at concert venues back in the day.
@John Cole: I need to hang out with you sometime!
I practice criminal law in Brooklyn, New York. The police bring assault charges very frequently where there are bruises like this, though I would say most often those cases involve interactions between paramours or spouses.
“Things” are “acceptable” until they aren’t. Marital rape, sexual harassment, drunk driving… you name it, it unfortunately requires significant public outrage before it’s treated seriously. Lewandowski laid hands on someone he shouldn’t have without any mitigating factors. The charge is warranted, as probably will the anger management course he will plea out to.
In a situation like this, the police usually try to discourage the victim from pressing charges because of course charges are more work for them. I’m guessing Lewandowski and the campaign were as dickish to the authorities as to everyone else, always a very bad move.
@rk: Don’t forget the trade wars he is going to start by slapping 30% tariffs on imports.
I still think he will. Someone downstairs mentioned something I’ve also noticed and commented on: Trump really looks physically unhealthy these days. I think he’ll have some kind of health scare and use it as a rationale for dropping out of the race, notwithstanding that ludicrous “medical report” he released a couple of months ago (paraphrase: “Donald Trump is the healthiest candidate for president in history! His health is tremendous! Never have I examined a man with such great health like Mr. Trump’s!”)
Iowa Old Lady
For me, it made some difference that the guy worked for a presidential candidate, acted in an official capacity to abuse someone during a public event, and targeted a reporter (even though she worked for Breitbart). All of those things move this from the personal to the political realm to me.
Adam L Silverman
@CarolDuhart2: This is part of it. My mother works with a local Jewish women’s group dealing with issues on battered women. The law here is very clear in regards to what is assault, what is battery, and when they cross from misdemeanor to felony. Here’s the statute:
784.03 Battery; felony battery.—
(1)(a) The offense of battery occurs when a person:
1. Actually and intentionally touches or strikes another person against the will of the other; or
2. Intentionally causes bodily harm to another person.
(b) Except as provided in subsection (2), a person who commits battery commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(2) A person who has one prior conviction for battery, aggravated battery, or felony battery and who commits any second or subsequent battery commits a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084. For purposes of this subsection, “conviction” means a determination of guilt that is the result of a plea or a trial, regardless of whether adjudication is withheld or a plea of nolo contendere is entered.
History.—s. 5, Feb. 10, 1832; RS 2401; s. 1, ch. 5135, 1903; GS 3227; RGS 5060; CGL 7162; s. 2, ch. 70-88; s. 730, ch. 71-136; s. 19, ch. 74-383; s. 9, ch. 75-298; s. 172, ch. 91-224; s. 5, ch. 96-392; s. 4, ch. 2001-50.
J R in WV
I’m with all the folks who have pointed out that unwanted touching of any sort is a crime, and the severity of that crime escalates as injury occurs, etc. This Lewandowski guy is obviously a bully-boy, probably learned at the knees of his father and his boss, who also seems like a bully-boy. Neither Trump or this Lewandowski boy have matured to adulthood.
The young woman lost her job, which the “media” company may live to regret. I don’t use her name because she is the victim in this story.
I expect Lewandowski will have an opportunity to offer a settlement of many dollars to the victim he battered. I hope he loses his job and that Trump has a hard (impossible) time replacing Lewandowski.
These right wingers seem to be able to control their sensory organs to avoid seeing anything that shows something they don’t like. Like that guy who got shot in Oregon, while reaching for his gun. People swear that the video shows him being shot with his hands up, or even lying on the ground after surrendering. I see a felon who has sworn he won’t be taken alive over and over on TV reaching for his gun and getting shot by sworn LEOs protecting each other from a violent felon.
This Lewandowski guy is just as violent, he just hasn’t gotten as enraged in public while carrying a pistol, yet.
Ah, it was Adam, was it? Thanks. I trust Adam; glad my memory’s not completely shot. And maybe he’ll be around later to share his own take on this news.
EDIT: Or maybe Adam L Silverman will show up even sooner :-)
Bullshit. I never worked in a dive bar in my life and I saw this happen hundreds of times. Literally, over the course of about ten years. You get idiot, entitled men manhandling women very roughly in every venue you can imagine. Especially a place that serves liquor and it doesn’t matter how much the liquor costs.
@SiubhanDuinne: Although the aforementioned ‘medical report’ kinda gave the game away when it went on to describe Trump’s sexual prowess in the same terms.
It’s not in most states, but Florida, once again, has to be the most special state in the Union.
I think the charge is utterly ridiculous, personally, but if we gotta go there we might as well go with a real shitheel, and this Lewandowski bastard seems like a fine candidate. Trump can and should countersue as I think the young Breitbart tart grabbed him in the process. That would lead to a result I’d enjoy. Lawsuits for all!
ETA: as to the “seen this in bars”, shit, I used to play music for a living and this would be low-grade Monday night material that wouldn’t even provoke a screaming match. I’ve seen worse done over one’s place in the bathroom line.
Kenneth R Ashford
If this happened in a bar in front of a cop, I would say that intervention is a possibility. Maybe 50/50. Like many misdemeanors, whether or not police and prosecutors can pursue is left to their discretion. But if she went ahead and filed a complaint with the police, and they have the evidence to support the crime, then they really have to do their job.
@SiubhanDuinne: I agree that campaigning for President is one of the most grueling things you can do in politics. And he’s not a spring chicken, and I’ll take your word for it he’s not looking too good. And we all know the pace picks up greatly after the convention.
But drop out? No-at least not before he gets the formal nomination and keeps Ted Cruz from being the nominee. That would be a win for him, regardless of what happens next.
And even then he could milk the sympathy vote and lightly campaign. Somebody is going to vote for him-indeed a whole lot of somebodies will.
NYT has a piece up now about the effect of NAFTA on the auto industry.
That value-add line is key as it’s what I’ve been saying around here for several years. The value-add jobs stayed, the non-value-add jobs were lost – but not that many went to Mexico. Not that many even went to China (the Chinese auto market has sold almost exclusively in China and around Asia, markets that Detroit was never serving to begin with). Most went to automation. The migration to southern US states doesn’t matter too much in the national debate since the value-add measure is national. Probably matters to Michigan voters, though.
The biggest problem that Detroit (and most of the US manufacturing base) faced was that it was an industry aimed at relatively high-earning households – almost exclusively in the US. It was too expensive to reach into lower-income markets like Germany and Japan post-war, and to markets like China. To do so would have required lowering wages since labor costs were the primary cost in post-war manufacturing. Our own desire to grow the middle class limited our market reach. Those lower-income markets developed their own manufacturing sectors to better match cost to consumers (Japanese-made goods were synonymous with ‘crap’ when I was growing up in the 70s, that then shifted to Taiwan as Japanese incomes climbed and their manufacturing quality along with it, then to China as Taiwan followed, and now Chinese goods are increasingly first-rate products. As noted in the article:
China is increasingly turning to automation as their wages increase. They are part of the same overall trend. The bottom line is that there are manufacturing solutions out there which cost less than a unionized US worker. That may be in the un-unionized south, or Mexico, or China, but when their wages rise, it’ll be robots. If you block off those other options by blocking right-to-work, or free trade, then manufacturers will simply skip straight to automation. No matter what, the high-wage US manufacturing jobs that could be automated (most of them) can’t be saved. Blaming the intermediaries is pointless if you are equally unhappy with the end state, and fighting that battle just diverts resources from helping the workers whose fate is already sealed from transitioning to something with a brighter future – or politically talking about what industries are sustainable and worthy of support to expand. I don’t ask anyone to like that analysis, just to accept it and use it in a productive way.
There are a lot of things that are technically against the law but aren’t prosecuted usually because they’re generally not that big of a deal. My assumption is that this is one of them: if Lewandowski or the Trump campaign had apologized (was never going to happen), Fields hadn’t been fired, so many of the relevant party weren’t huge asses, etc., that this also wouldn’t have been prosecuted. But since it went down the way it did, with video evidence, she filed a police report and now he’s been charged.
And because the victim made a stink about it, and there were enough other people who didn’t like the perp (possibly including the prosecutor) that they were willing to back her up. You need that combination to make something like this stick.
Re Trump not looking well — isn’t he currently taking something like 2 weeks off from campaign appearances? Who does that during a hotly contested primary season? (and didn’t The Doctor once depose a Prime Minister by mentioning in front of the press how tired she looked?)
Adam L Silverman
@retiredeng: Assault in Florida is making verbalized threats and having it deemed that you could, indeed, carry them out.
Raven: I can think of at least 3 reasons for that:
–not wanting to spend the time charging, booking, and report writing for an overtime gig.
–Not wanting a riot to start if backup is far off and it’s just one or two officers trying to deal with 2 drunk assholes and have the crowd turn against them and go nuts.
–Most likely in my book, Saturday’s drunk asshole UGA fan is Monday’s business exec/lawyer/politician who may have real clout in getting you in trouble with your chain of command or even fired. I’m sure the university police in particular in all of the big sports and tailgating schools have a similar mental calculation going at all times.
My fvcking post keeps disappearing, so lemme just tell y’all to go read this story about Michelle Rhee’s grift machine needing to merge with fellow travelers on the other coast so they can do their kill-public-schools thing in a way that attracts more better funding. One power couple I’ll be glad to see in the rearview.
Have not idea what FYWP trigger I was triggering.
Adam L Silverman
@Obdurodon: Its not. In Florida it is very specific. I’ve just posted the entire statute, with links to the entire chapter of related statutes in the Florida code in a new thread.
From my POV, this is really simple.
1) The legalities are unquestionably on Fields’ side.
2) She lost her job over this. That’s real-life, real-money consequences.
3) She deserves to get recompensed for those consequences by that rat bastard Lewandowski.
4) A criminal judgment against him will allow her to sue him in civil court without her having to prove that the assault happened.
5) The criminal judgment also will get it into the public record that this fucking happened, no matter what the Trump crew says.
6) Lewandowski apparently has a history of abusive shit like this. It’s time someone put the hurt to him over it, because he’ll keep on being like this until someone does. Good on Fields for stepping up.
And can I just say how appalled I am that too many people in this thread seem to think that manhandling a woman hard enough to create bruises is no big fucking deal and really shouldn’t even be prosecuted if the guy just apologizes? Or if it happens in a “dive” bar? Seriously, WTF?
Misogyny lives everywhere.
Adam L Silverman
@SiubhanDuinne: There is a single Politico article that indicates that he was a New Hampshire State Police Officer for one year.
Adam L Silverman
@LAO: Hey, now!
Context kinda matters. Battery happens every period in a hockey game and we call it “checking” and the worst you get is a timeout in a “penalty box” The Boston punk bars I used to frequent once upon ago, it was generally accepted practice to throw beer bottles at the band if it was shitty – and your average Boston mosh pit would probably be considered felonious assault if it occurred in the middle of the street.
This being a political rally, getting battered as a member of the
propaganda departmentpress by staff members of the political campaign is not part of the mutually accepted context. Though, personally, given that the “journalist” in question worked for Breitbart, part of me says they had it coming.
@Cmm: I think it’s all three. I know county, city and UGA police personnel and they all hate football Saturday overtime or not. I was at the beach last year and ran into a guy who had been an Auburn officer for years and he said he’d never go near any of it as soon as he didn’t have to. I’ll add the ER folks I know as well. The thing that’s happened in a lot of SEC towns is that thousands of people who don’t even think about going to the game show up and act like assholes.
Villago Delenda Est
@sherparick: This thing came up all the time when I was in the Army; should I, as an officer (and de facto someone whose testimony carries weight in any procedure under the UCMJ) take “official notice” of something? Or should I just blink my eyes and not? My NCOs used to tell me “sir, you don’t want to know the details” as a subtle way of saying “sure, this was not on the up and up, and I’m letting you know that so you don’t get officially involved, because we all know what sort of problem THAT leads to…to include a lot of tedious paperwork…”.
@geg6: Her being a woman shouldn’t have anything to do with it. Roughing a person up a political rally should be considered a bad thing, regardless of the gender. Her role as the victim in the assault is not “extra special worse” just because she is a woman.
@geg6: I agree. A woman who has been manhandled by a random guy while doing her job has had a scary experience. She was undercut by her employers, mocked by the assailant’s employers, and most likely flamed all over the net. She, and other women, need some reassurance that it’s really not okay for men to bruise women just because they can.
@Villago Delenda Est: Blanket party!
@Adam L Silverman: Do you know how to read laws? (1)(a)1 is sufficient to constitute battery in Florida, regardless of everything after that, and it is indeed a very broad definition. Real lawyers seem to agree.
Note that the middle one specifically uses the grabbing of an arm as an example. All that’s required is contact (including indirect), intent, and non-consensuality. There’s no specific *kind* of contact, no specific *context*, no requirement that harm actually occur, etc. That’s how the law reads, and that’s how it has been applied.
@CarolDuhart2: If only he’d shot her. Then he could have walked.
Adam L Silverman
@Obdurodon: What exactly are we supposed to be arguing about, because you’ve confused me.
Bars often have people in them who for various reasons, would not want to have much to do with law enforcement. It’s easier to shrug off minor assaults or let the bouncers take care of it. People are drunk, so there’s a question of intent-going to the courthouse seems a bit much for so little results, whatever. This was workplace assault.
And observation of Trump: he ‘s gotten away with a lot of stuff because for a long time people thought he would “just drop out”. He was never taken seriously until it was too late to stop him. Even now there’s the hope that it’s all a joke, that he’s not serious about his run. We need to take him seriously as a real candidate and a real possibility to go to 1600 Pennsylvania avenue as a resident.
@Adam L Silverman: I said the statute was broad. You flatly disagreed, and were wrong. Clear enough?
Iowa Old Lady
Isn’t Lewandowski the one who threw Jorge Ramos out of a Trump presser and then Trump said he didn’t know who Lewandowski was? That he must have been a cop or maybe building security?
Adam L Silverman
@Obdurodon: Sure, thanks. Have a nice day!
or it can work the other way round…once when I kinda-sorta roadying a gig of the ex-husbing’s at a dive bar in Iowa we had a little pissant in one of the other bands start getting in the boys’ faces about how they had “gone over their time” and were taking too long to break down (when actually they were late getting started because other previous bands had gone over *their* time, but hey, whatever), and he not only took a swing at the drummer (very stupid idea) but laid hands on Jeff’s kit (VERY stupid idea) as if to start hauling it away himself. At which point I said, “get off the stage, asshole” and gave him a nice swift shove-off myself. Look on the guy’s face was priceless. So was being restrained (!!) (not very strenuously) by the bouncer, to prevent further mayhem. So were the hoots of derision from all the lookers-on, cuz, you know, a *girl* had committed battery. The guy was so shocked and embarrassed I thought he was gonna burst into tears right on the spot.
Most satisfying thing of all? The guy’s band SUCKED ROCKS. My ex’s band was so much better, people started heckling this other band about being in such a damn hurry to take over.
@goblue72: I think the reason a lot of people see a bar fight between two men as no big whoop as long as it doesn’t go too far is because there is an assumption that each dude is capable of defending himself, and also that each could do enough damage to the other so that the combatants themselves will see to it that it won’t go too far. That is not generally true when a man assaults a woman. She has many fewer resources to defend herself, and those resources consist largely of societal norms and the hope that someone else will intervene. I am not saying that it’s OK for a man to assault another man, or that it wouldn’t be appropriate to bring charges in that case, but an unprovoked attack of a woman by a man raises more issues about maintaining a civil society than those in a garden variety bar fight.
@FMBJO: It’s nothing but trolling by a pissed off former employee, is all.
I’d like all that shit to be true, and that’s a sure sign that it isn’t. WAY too tidy and convenient.
Im sympathetic to her and think she should pursue this until she has basicslly bankrupted lewanfowski but its also a case of “missing white woman” police znd press action. Lots of people have been manhandled, battered, verbally assaulted at trump rallies–but the were POC or other protestors. The police, for the most part, cheerfully threw them out or even arrested them. Michelle fields is lucky trump idnt charging *her* with battery or obstruction or obstreperous behaviour or whatever he can get away with.
a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q)
@dollared: @geg6: Bullshit indeed. I’m not sure I’ve ever been mistreated in a dive bar – the kind of people in those establishments have a keen sense of what is more trouble than it’s worth, however intoxicated they get. I have, however, been in expensive establishments with bars. There I experienced extremely expensively dressed men express their certainty that I would find close conversation fascinating (despite my clear indications, including polite “no thank you’ I’m waiting for a colleague/friend) in a less than subtle – in fact rather grabby – fashion. The most recent time, as the male escalated his discounting of repeatedly more emphatic “no,” I began to lose patience. I didn’t raise my voice; I lowered it, and looked toward the bartender, who’d been kinda/sorta watching. Who then came a bit closer to observe. I asked him, “would you like to explain to this man, again, that his attention is unwelcome, or shall I?” Something about the way I asked encouraged the bartender to steer the expensively dressed and very confident man away.
Mingobat f/k/a Karen in GA
@geg6: Thank you.
Adam L Silverman
@Iowa Old Lady: No, if you go to the reporting here at the NY Times, they have a picture of who escorted him out and its clearly not Lewandowski. You are correct that Trump did claim that he had nothing to do with his removal, that it was all done by security without his input.
@Amir Khalid: It’s misdemeanor battery, so not as serious as a felony-level offense. It’s also a tort, and a criminal conviction can make the civil case purely about damages, since the burden of proof in the crim case (beyond a reasonable doubt) proves it for the civil case. Not sure if the intentional tort of battery requires preponderance of evidence, or the stricter clear and convincing evidence, but it’s less of a burden than the reasonable-doubt one.
I agree with the rest of the thread, John: you’re missing the context. Being grabbed and bruised at a political rally is not the same as being grabbed and bruised at a dive bar.
Also, to keep the dive bar metaphor, I’m pretty sure that you’re going to be more likely to get charged if you grab and bruise an employee who’s in the middle of doing their job than if it’s just the guy on the ext barstool. Context matters.
I don’t often go to bars and I’ve never been to a bar where there has been a fight break out. With that caveat, I think that incidents in bars can be and often are seen as mutual combat. People were drunk, they were both being combative. It happens. Everyone got what they deserved. In this case there was no mutual combat. There was a newswoman who was grabbed and pushed by a man with enough force that he left bruises. Assault shouldn’t be waved off in general, but where one person is obviously innocent and the other is exerting physical force AND it’s CAUGHT ON CAMERA, damned straight it should be prosecuted.
a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q)
@Adam L Silverman: In OH that’s menacing or agg menacing, depending on the specifics of the threat. Assault is to knowingly cause or attempt to cause physical harm to another.
@Kenneth R Ashford: This seems like it. Many bar fights don’t involve cops, just a bouncer, maybe. Or the cops show up late, and it’s a he said/he said thing.
Sometimes cops do see something, but the aggrieved (if it can be determined) doesn’t want to press charges. Heck, they might have arrived in the bar as friends!
I do think there are some extenuating circumstances here, since Trump is a A1 arsehole who not only can’t apologize but rather fans flames, hence a more forceful legal pushback. And Trump treats journalists like the product of his arsehole, and that tends to piss said journalists off. Give one a chance to press charges, it could be hard not to. All seems justifiable payback to me.
@Aimai: To be fair, in NC some police officers were demoted for ignoring violence against a protester at a Trump rally.
Adam L Silverman
@a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): Doesn’t surprise me. One of the things I always used to emphasize when I taught criminal justice was that each state defined things differently. Ranging from a bit to a lot!
@Adam L Silverman: LOL.
@low-tech cyclist: I agree on all points. May she sue her former employer as well.
Mingobat f/k/a Karen in GA
@a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): I used to hang out in a “dive” bar back in my much younger days. You hit it right on the head — these people had enough stress in their lives without creating more for themselves. They just wanted to kick back and have a few beers, and had no use for anyone who was looking for any kind of conflict.
There was one guy we knew who decided he didn’t like the downscale atmosphere there, so he started patronizing a “nicer” establishment — shinier fixtures, pricier drinks, better-dressed patrons — and a couple of weeks later showed up with his arm in a sling after someone there shot him in the shoulder. He recovered, went back to the “nicer” establishment, got shot in the back in a completely unrelated incident, and wound up in a wheelchair for life. Our theory was that the nice boys in the expensive bar couldn’t handle their alcohol.
Worst thing I and my dive bar friends ever did was hurl funny insults at each other.
Adam L Silverman
@LAO: Keep it up and you can find your own fix!!!
@Ol’Froth: evidence that he grabbed at her, and briefly made contact. Im’ with BJ on this… seems a nothingburger to me. Not that I’m crying for this creep
I miss the Rat.
Generally speaking–and FSM knows FL may differ–if the charge is criminal (not civil), then it’s the state charging the defendant, not the victim charging the defendant. Broadly speaking: the crime is against the state (or society), because we have agreed–as a society–to certain norms of behavior, and we agreed–as a society–that the state enforces our rules.
It is also the case that sometimes the victim has to agree to be a witness or the crime can’t be charged. Here, because there’s video evidence widely available, that wouldn’t necessarily be true. But it is virtually always the case that a given prosecutor has some degree of discretion, and the cases that are charged often ARE so charged because of public pressure on that discretion.
Which, of course, leads me to wonder what the county demographics are of the DA who’s charging….
I think you are correct that this type of minor but real physical contact happens all the time, in all sorts of settings, between all kinds of people. In both your and my experience, most people don’t prefer to pursue legal action, which can make it seem like a minor manhandling is being blown up into a major incident.
But it’s important to remember that any unwanted touching is a crime, and any victim can choose to pursue legal action. It’s their right to file a complaint or not to file one. The fact that is seldom occurs shouldn’t change the importance of the wisdom we all learned in kindergarten – keep your hands to yourself.
In general, shoves escalate, due to dated honor codes that force the shoved person (or that person’s “protector”) to retaliate or lose face. That leads to something more serious that gets charged.
If the shoving and the shoved are related, it’s rare for stuff much worse than this to get reported.
a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q)
@Adam L Silverman: LOL, I thought you were gonna say it didn’t surprise you that a high end bartender finally figured out that MY handling an obnoxious (but exquisitely and expensively dressed) man who disregarded social cues was going to go sideways for the bar rather than for me.
I’m getting a little grandiose, clearly.
And FTR, I don’t imagine anyone here would seriously maintain that it was OK in any way, shape or form for a guy to grab a woman like that, whether in a bar or on the job (or on the job in a bar, for that matter). I just think we all are a bit guilty, on occasion, of looking hard at the trees and missing the forest. Or something.
From what I can tell — she basically filed charges because the Trump campaign, its supporters, and her former publication were taunting her with a “How can you say it happened if you never filed charges”.
The reporter would have been fine with an apology. She would have been fine if her employer and the campaign was honest. But since everyone involved decided to lie and mock her credibility, the next step was to file charges and get the truth out there.
Adam L Silverman
@a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): That anecdote you shared didn’t surprise me at all. I’ve seen that happen many a time. Both with Tentacle Tommy get his mitts all over the woman before someone intervened and Tentacle Tommy getting steered clear because it became abundantly clear that the woman in question wasn’t going to just live and let live.
@Adam L Silverman: Alright man, don’t threaten me like that. I’ll be on my best behavior. (which means no more commenting from me cause I’m still taking heat for my “I wouldn’t call Scalia Evil” comments this morning).
@Kay (not the front-pager):
Not just Lewandowski himself — he (and Trump) encouraged their manic twitter-followers to harass Fields. Between those pixel-locusts and her sackless-wonder Breitbart ‘superiors’, if she hadn’t filed charges she’d have had to change careers, because there’s not much demand for political reporters who “invent” being grabbed by campaign managers.
From the post-incident analyses I’ve seen at places like the Washington Post and Politico, Lewandowski’s got a long history of pushing the boundaries with women — from calling subordinates the c-word at meetings to “aggressively getting into the personal space” of female reporters. For all his vaunted machismo, he doesn’t seem to get nearly as “assertive” with men in the same positions.
Which, y’know: Trump knew what he was getting when he hired Lewandowski. Like master, like man may be the best brief summary of Trump’s whole campaign!
Adam L Silverman
@LAO: I didn’t see that. I’m afraid to go and look.
Of my many stints employed by gay drinking establishments, one tour as a door person stood out. For whatever reasons, Sundays were “Lesbian Night”. I spent more time breaking up fights those nights than any other night.
Don’t remember that we ever called in the local PD officer whom we paid to stand outside.
a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q)
@Adam L Silverman: A couple of years (or decades) earlier I was in a college bar listening to a band play. I knew the band, I knew the bartender who also worked at another bar I patronized. I could sit alone at the bar and as he put it “bore him with [my] ability to project ‘leave me the fuck alone.’ ” But one frat boy – and the band didn’t draw frat boys so he had his nights mixed up, got a little crowdy. He got close enough that Steve leaned over and said “you can move on down nicely or I’ll let Bella tell you, and I recommend you just change seats.” Somehow being told this by a 6’5″ 280 dude was quickly persuasive. We laffed.
Were you getting a hard time? I have a hard time calling human beings”evil” myself…altho’ for some reason I have no problem with describing certain human *actions* as evil. Semantic hair-splitting that would likely get me in trouble at the seminary level. Or with a buncha lawyers, perhaps… ; )
Three reasons it was charged here:
1. It fits the legal definition of battery
2. She pressed charges
3. It was caught on video
It’s really that simple. In the vast majority of the “batteries” you see in bars and the like, the subject of the battery doesn’t press charges. And even when they do, there’s often no direct—let alone video—evidence of it sufficient to bring the charge.
Also, the decision to charge might, might be motivated a fractional amount by the desire to deter thuggery at campaign events. But I’m pretty confident it mostly has to do with the three reasons I innumerated above.
@raven: Hmmm. Maybe it’s regional, but I worked at Heinz Field for Steeler and Pitt games (Oh, those WVU fans!) but we were never allowed to let that kind of thing happen, called the cops and they broke it up ASAP..
Their mantra was that he fans could be in their warm, snug homes watching on their big screen TV’s, make sure the experience is enjoyable, considering all the money they’re laying out to be here ((cough)$8.00 beers(cough)).
I went to an LGBT-friendly comedy cabaret a couple of nights ago. One of the jokes was that there were more gay men than lesbians there because by 8 p.m. the lesbians are home in their slippers with their cats watching Storage Wars. Sunday nights are slow nights for bars–nothing to lose by hosting a lesbian night.
@Miss Bianca: We lawyers love hair splitting. At least this one does
@Adam L Silverman: Don’t bother.
One, it was published in Xojane, which is an online young-hipster-womens blog not much read by the Very Serious Media. One-point-five, it is long and not IMO very well written — and it only showed up yesterday. Two, I have seen a few tweets in the political-reporter streams I follow quietly discussing Stephanie Cegielski’s work history… if she’s legit (and she seems to be) the story will blow up into the “mainstream” over the next couple days. This Lewandowski kerfuffle may actually have delayed its ‘wide release’ briefly, but now it can be discussed as further evidence that the Trump campaign has anger management issues.
With all my legal expertise in this area gained by being a juror on an assault and battery case in California, the Florida laws do not sound much different than California. What did surprise me from the trial, was the enhanced charges that made this fist fight was an incident with “deadly weapons”. Eventually we the jury found the defendant innocent because there was reasonable doubt about who started the fight, and defense vs. offense.
But what was interesting was the subtext that (most likely, reading behind the lines) caused this incident to go to trial. One party in the fight had accused the other of being a gang member who sold drugs, and I am guessing the assault charge was the excuse to arrest the guy. There were no charges along these lines during the trial, but it popped up several times (LEO report, conflicting witnesses testimony).
So in conclusion, like many other laws, assault and battery can apply to a wide variety of situations but in practice they are used at LEO and prosecutor’s discretion against the “bad guys”; and occasionally otherwise like in this incident.
Adam L Silverman
@LAO: I got jumped on above for stating that Florida’s battery statute, which has specific examples of what constitutes battery, is not specific, but very general.
This is not a safe place for anybody!
You were wrong there and you’re wrong here. The problem is, you don’t want to hear that.
Nothing wrong with this Mr. Cole nor do I suspect anyone criticized you for (not) saying this before.
Your surprise does not mean the charge isn’t valid or deserved. Clearly, some law enforcement and legal people thought it did rise to the level of a crime. How is your opinion more informed than theirs?
This wasn’t a bar. This was a political event event involving a reporter and a campaign manager. If that difference isn’t enough to make you think your bar analogy might be wrong then I doubt what I am writing here will affect you either.
Now you know.
No, but that doesn’t make it right especially in the context where it occurred.
Once again, a completely inappropriate analogy though I will say, I think our police in general are very comfortable using more force than they should be. In protest situations, doubly so.
Adam L Silverman
@Anne Laurie: I’ve seen speculation that she didn’t actually hold the position she claimed to. I haven’t seen any corroboration for that assertion, but I’ve seen it. Usually in the comments sections to where its been reported. Given that the Trump campaign requires even unpaid volunteers to sign binding, detailed non-disclosure agreements, I’m surprised that anyone that worked at this now shuttered Trump PAC were not required to sign them as well.
A Ghost To Most
Near as I have been able to figure, evil is only possible in the presence of humans.
IIRC, he started state police training in New Hampshire, where the standards are… not so high as might be expected. And he “gave it up” after a few months, reasons not specified as far as I can recall.
My gut feeling at the time, just from knowing too many Lewandowski types: He thought being a cop would give him a license to flourish a gun and push people around. When it became clear that most actual cop work is more about public relations and paperwork, with only the strong chance of physical injury to separate it from political campaign work, either Corey said fvck-it and walked off or his training supervisors encouraged him to find other outlets. Possibly both!
@goblue72: Perhaps you should follow the rest of that part of you and go join the republican party.
Or else cut it out with the “She deserved it” crap.
That’s exactly what I’ve heard from police officers – threatening someone is assault, putting your hand on them is battery.
a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q)
@LAO: My custom title at a soap forum where I still post in Off Topic is “Our Lady of Split Hairs.”
@Adam L Silverman: It all fun and games till somebody loses an eye.
@glory b: The WORST (or best) fight I ever saw was at Three Rivers. I assume they were steel workers but whatever they were there were about 10 of them hookin and the cops just let it run it’s course.
Adam L Silverman
@Anne Laurie: It may also be he was unemployed between political gigs and the police academy was providing full time pay and benefits for cadets.
I had a friend who post bachelor’s degree wasn’t sure what to do next. He saw that the law enforcement academy was seeking recruits and offering pay and benefits while in training as a cadet. His family had no history of being in law enforcement, but he decided to do it as it would 1) buy him time to figure out what he wanted and 2) give him a fall back job in case that took a while. He’s now got 20 years in, is a supervisory officer, one of the best snipers and law enforcement trainers out there, and I’m convinced it was because he approached it as something that might be interesting so what the hell as opposed to “I have to be a cop because…”.
Adam L Silverman
@LAO: And provided that’s not me, its still all fun and games.
@? Martin: I know I’m way late to this thread but I just wanted to tell you how much I appreciated your post and the link.
@A Ghost To Most:
For me, I guess, “evil” as a description of human beings -as opposed to say, some supernatural force, which is a whole other argument – e.g., “oh, that Scalia is evil” – becomes too convenient as a label. To dismiss someone as “evil” becomes a weird way of reassuring ourselves that that person is somehow “other” – that that person does things that *we*, nice, not-evil people, wouldn’t do. Hence my hair-splitting – I think we are all capable of performing *actions* that are evil, or have unlooked-for consequences that are evil. Does that make us all “evil people”?
O time, thou must untangle this, not I.
It is too hard a knot for me to untie!
@Adam L Silverman: Well, that could well be why Cegielski floated this story at XoJane instead of a more ‘traditional’ outlet. I’m told the Trump non-disclosure release would not actually be enforceable, and I assume it would be even less useful as a weapon for a shuttered superPAC. But using the National Enquirer/Drudge standard, once her story is “out there” then more upscale media outlets have an excuse to publish. Questions have been raised!
@Adam L Silverman:
Good point. I’ve heard it said — sometimes by cops — that the people who most want to be cops are the ones who shouldn’t be allowed to join the force.
Like the joke that anyone who wants to be President should be disqualified by reason of insanity!
“Generally accepted?” Bullshit. Well, OK, maybe you hung out with poseur idiots. Throwing a bottle at a musician–who would generally be, you know, focussing on playing, and not looking out for flying objects–is a seriously dangerous act of assault. A (musician) friend of mine lost an eye at Chet’s one night, due to a thrown bottle from a fight that had nothing to do with him. People remember that shit, and would not like to see it happen again. Hell, my drummer jumped over his kit at one gig because some jerk tossed a coke–in a cup–at us. The one time I actually saw a bottle thrown at a band, the whole audience was looking around for the perpetrator.
And you’re comparing this to being in a pit? Those people are in there voluntarily. That kind of matters.
And, to cap off my Boston music memories, @redshirt: Fuck the Rat.
@raven: All this talk of bar fights is reminding me of a great old John Gorka song Up Until Then
@Citizen_X: Why do you hate the Rat?
@Miss Bianca: I’m not going to rehash my “evil comments” from earlier but you and me need to hang out.
(Right before I pressed the publish button, I realized I wrote “hag out”‘ not sure how’d you feel about that so I corrected it).
That’s Twitter for ya.
Nope, it does happen a lot and often doesn’t get charged, because I think most people don’t file criminal complaints in such instances.
Otoh, Google Melissa Click: She was the journalism professor at Mizzou who put her hand on the camera of a student journalist during the protests there. He did file a criminal complaint and she got charged, to the cheers of many wingnuts on Twitter. I’m guessing they’ll have double standard about this.
Huh? Are you saying it’s okay to touch strangers in a bar?
Really? It’s actually happened to me. Dudes getting handsy. I’ve never called the cops, though I certainly wouldn’t hesitate to if they didn’t back off after my telling them to.
No, of course not. What I am saying that in a social, typically drunk environment I’m not surprised it happens and it’s still repugnant. But during a campaign event? Well, trump loves to threaten violence directly or by proxy.
As a lawyer, I was absolutely unsurprised. Battery is intentional harmful or offensive touching. Assault is making someone afraid you’re going to touch them in a way that’s harmful or offensive. If you leave bruises, you go from the “bring a tort claim” area to a D.A. saying “yeah, that was a crime.” That’s the law.
The point of these laws is to prevent incidents that will escalate to violence and to protect the weak from having to wait until they get hurt to get protection. The lesson here is don’t bad touch other people unless they want you to and you have an agreed upon safe word, because otherwise you could go to jail.
@redshirt: Mainly for a history of brutal bouncers. They would threaten and toss out people for trivial “offenses,” threaten band members, and at least a couple of times I saw them drag somebody out the front door and pound on them on the sidewalk while bored cops stood around drinking their coffee. They did have a couple of enlightened years, though, when a friend of mine, and big music fan, became supervisor of security!
Which I think has become more common today. You have to have security; why not have them be people who actually love music, and understand the fans?
“One party in the fight had accused the other of being a gang member who sold drugs, and I am guessing the assault charge was the excuse to arrest the guy.”
This happens a lot.
People in Pittsburgh will take entertainment wherever they can find it.
@currants: While it’s true the government, not the victim, is the one to bring charges in criminal cases, “pressing charges” in this context is generally just shorthand for the willingness of the victim to willingly support the charge through statements, testimony, provision of evidence, etc. without a victim who’s willing testify, many charges can’t be sustained.
I would argue that the setting is everything.
hate to say it, but certain forms of behavior in a bar or pub would be viewed a little differently in a school or church or political gathering.
Where Lewandowski did it is as important as what he did (physical assault) and to whom he did it (a reporter doing her job).
@Citizen_X: I never got bounced, so I had no problems at the Rat and loved the place. It was close by and always interesting.
@maurinsky: in GA threatening someone is harassment or terroristic threats depending on the seriousness of the threats and the corroborating evidence.
For a threat to be assault there has to be the fear that you are going to be injured immediately–swinging at someone without connecting or screaming in someone’s face in an out of control manner. Whereas texting someone from another state “Send me money, Dad, or I’m gonna drive to Georgia and kill you” as we had in a recent case — that was terroristic threats (felony) but not assault.
On the other hand I charged a drunk asshole in one of the airport hotels with assault one time because he was too drunk to work the microwave in his room and kept coming to the front desk complaining loudly and profanely that the microwave pizza sole in the little shop at the front desk was defective . Clerk finally called us when he stomped down to the lobby and threw the pizza at the wall behind the front desk…not close to hitting her but she was terrified enough that she was shaking still when we got there…he’d gone back to his room and passed out by the time we knocked on his door. He didn’t hit her or threaten directly to hit her but his behaviour was such, and escalating every time he came back, that she was n fear of being injured. If he had just been stomping around ranting and raving without throwing the pizza, probably would have gone with disorderly conduct.
Prolly dead thread, but…*hag out*
SOL (that’s, “Snerk out loud”).
The attitude of the people involved in a particular conflict has a lot to do with charges too. I’ve been at calls where the victim was an asshole, like a guy being escorted from a bar because he was way drunk and groping a waitress. Well the bouncer was indeed touching him without his consent but there were dozens of people outside the bar demanding to be a witness for the bouncer, including the waitress. He was in the verge of getting arrested himself for DC and the waitress was yelling that if he pressed charges on the bouncer then she was pressing charges on the drunk guy because he put his hands on her. Our fallback for things like that is, we’ll take an information report, get everyone’s info and pull a case number and if he feels strongly enough about it later that he still wants to prosecute, he can come down and talk to a detective. They almost never do and the judge will usually want to hold a warrant hearing rather than just signing the warrant in a hinky case and almost no one bothers taking it to that extent.
Prosecutorial discretion, Cole. This is one of the way the Republican establishment can crush Trump. Reach out to a friendly Republican prosecutor, have a talk in general terms about “how important it is to maintain the rule of law,” yadda yadda yadda, next thing ya know, one of Trump’s people gets hit with a ferkakta misdemeanor charge.
You can charge people with a misdemeanor for just about anything from vagrancy to failure to obey a police order to stabbing someone else with your finger in the chest during an argument (battery).