September Open Thread

Odds and ends about policing from around the country:

1) The Biden Administration’s Solicitor General is now siding against local police officers in lawsuits against cops that reach the Supreme Court — something even Democratic administrations have rarely done before. (In this particular case, a jury already rejected every claim against the officers, save the one which is on appeal after being dismissed by a judge. I think that says a lot about the weakness of the plaintiff’s case.)

2) Portland is still having regular street fights between the Proud Boys and Antifa. During the most recent fight the police, apparently at the mayor’s direction, decided to just let them fight it out. Peter Moskos points out there’s not a lot else the cops can do out there — they’re not allowed to use riot control weapons, and have only about fifty cops on duty at any given time.

3) I’m normally all about community policing, but maybe not when it ends in a workers comp claim:

4) I mentioned it in my article about sending social workers, but it is remarkable how Washington State has managed to break the state’s mental health care system with new laws prohibiting police from using force to detain even dangerously ill individuals:

Snohomish County crisis responders recently went out to evaluate the health of a person believed to have had a gun at their home, said Carola Schmid, a supervisor at Snohomish County Crisis Services.

“And law enforcement said, ‘Well, we’ll be a block away, and if they point a gun at you, call 911,'” Schmid said. “And that is not a safe way to do our jobs.”

5) In a take that’s sure to make a lot of people mad, Germain Lopez summarizes over at Vox why the evidence for “violence interrupters” is so weak.

6) If you ask police “abolitionists” (I prefer to call them anarchists since that’s what they are) what will happen to violent criminals in a world with no police, they may demand you “do the reading.” Charles Lehman over at MI did the reading; it turns out there’s still no answer. (When it comes to policing issues, the Manhattan Institute is the only think-tank that doesn’t suck.)

7) “We find that illegal access to guns, rather than legal, corresponds to greater homicide in more than 200 US cities over eight years.”

8) The DOJ is actually putting some limits on the tenure of federal monitors who are appointed to oversee consent decrees. These monitors have often cost cities millions of dollars and produced dismal results, which is why the Trump Administration restricted them even more heavily.

9) Leonydus Johnson keeps a running list on Twitter of all the small children shot to death in America this year. Over 50 so far. You can look at it here if you want your day ruined, but be warned — this shit is fucked up.

10) Saving me the trouble of writing about it, John Hall explains why stopping police enforcement of traffic laws is an insanely bad idea.