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Posted: Tuesday, April 15, 2014 9:30 pm | Updated: 5:30 pm, Wed Apr 16, 2014.

A Santa Fe police officer accused of using excessive force when he arrested a taxi driver just after midnight last month has resigned from the department.

No criminal charges have been filed against the former officer, Jose Gutierrez, but dashboard camera footage of the arrest taken from his patrol car shows at least one inconsistency between what the department has reported about the incident and what was captured on video.

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Welcome to the discussion.

94 comments:

  • Lewis Work posted at 8:10 am on Fri, Apr 25, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "I still believe - as a retired LEO, that the great majority of officers are honest, hardworking, and want to do a good job." - I'd agree that the majority of police officers are basically honest, hardworking, and motivated to do good, and do it well. But I've also encountered a disturbing number (a minority, but not an insignificant minority) who were basically bullies at heart and got into law enforcement for the power trip and the opportunity to bust heads.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 8:11 pm on Thu, Apr 24, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    Mr Work, the reality is that only a handful of people will have access to all of the facts in this case. Many times I have seen people assign fault or blame despite not having all the facts. Sometimes, those people are proven wrong, sometimes they are vindicated. Rarely, when proven wrong, do they apologize or admit their folly. When proven right, they triumphantly say "I told you so!"
    Sometimes, unfortunately, the truth never comes out with enough finality to satisfy everyone. I think some of the posters here have an inherent dislike or distrust of Police Officers as a whole, and that may drive their feelings. Chances are, they had a bad experience (or two) with police- or a friend or relative did.
    I still believe - as a retired LEO, that the great majority of officers are honest, hardworking, and want to do a good job. Marco Ordonez, for example , clearly believes those officers do not exist, or are in a tiny minority. As a former LEO (you claim) - where do you stand?

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 9:44 am on Thu, Apr 24, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    Mr. Grimler, I've already done my time as an LEO, I don't need to do it again. And back when I did law enforcement, Officer Gutierrez's brutal actions would have been a clear violation of our use of force policy. Not only that, but we would have shamed any officer who claimed that the mere presence of an unarmed woman outside of her car was so threatening that it justified beating her, especially if he jumped up to that excessive use of force so swiftly.

     
  • Michael Grimler posted at 7:01 pm on Wed, Apr 23, 2014.

    shooter Posts: 188

    Ordonez (since you referred to me as last name only, I'll do the same),

    All you seem to have to fall back on are anonymous internet insults.

     
  • Michael Grimler posted at 6:54 pm on Wed, Apr 23, 2014.

    shooter Posts: 188

    Mr. Work, I did my time as a cabbie, thank you very much.

    Your turn to put on a badge.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 12:34 pm on Wed, Apr 23, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "I was merely offering a possible explanation..." - I find that your "oops, I forgot what a horrible act of police brutality I committed and accidentally wrote it up in my report inaccurately, in a manner that looks (entirely unintentionally) like a blatant attempt at a cover-up" excuse merits out of hand dismissal.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 9:40 am on Wed, Apr 23, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    There are plenty of very bad people out there. That doesn't give police officers the right to brutalize unarmed women just for getting out of a car.

     
  • Yvonne Cartee posted at 10:37 pm on Tue, Apr 22, 2014.

    Were_you_there Posts: 7

    If you still don't get when you follow instructions you are safer and things don't escalate, then you need to watch this video link on traffic stops. It just might enlighten some and for the rest, you get what you deserve. Stupid is as stupid does.


    https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10152194381849737&id=689669736

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 2:43 pm on Tue, Apr 22, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    There are two separate issues here;
    the first one is whether or not he lied about how many times he told her to stay in the car- the second issue is whether or not he used excessive force.
    This discussion was referring to how many times he told her to stay in the car. You made a big deal about branding him as a liar because his report was not supported by the video. I was merely offering a possible explanation for it which you have dismissed out of hand.
    now as for the excessive force, that is a separate issue. I will say however that the only evidence of an injury I have seen is a black eye and I can remember when my sisters three year old daughter accidentally elbowed her in the eye and gave her a black eye- just sayin'

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 8:13 am on Tue, Apr 22, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    People, including police officers, make bad decisions all the time, and these days those bad decisions are often caught on video tape. The fact that this officer's excessive use of force was captured on his own dash-cam, and that the video contradicts the officer's self-serving official report on the incident, is not proof that the officer wasn't lying to cover up his wrongdoing. Asserting otherwise is the opposite of logic and reason.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 8:25 pm on Mon, Apr 21, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    Well, then we will have to agree to disagree, and leave it at that. The video/audio systems in the police cars at SFPD are pretty sophisticated (I used them, you didn't) and for him to risk his livelihood and entire career because he hoped he might "get lucky" is such a weak argument on your part that I feel this "conversation" has run its course. You clearly are so biased in your opinion of this Officer (and probably all Officers) that logic and reason will not factor into your thought process- merely emotion.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 1:05 pm on Mon, Apr 21, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "She just refused to realize that she was going to be arrested..." - At what point in the video does Officer Gutierrez warn Ms. Bourgeois that she was risking arrest? Not once in the video is Ms. Bourgeois warned that not staying in the car could lead to her arrest.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 12:59 pm on Mon, Apr 21, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "A member of the public Intentionally lying to an Officer to cover up wrongdoing is trying to avoid arrest or other punitive action, such as a ticket." - You seem to be suggesting that if a member of the public tells a police officer something later proven to be both inaccurate and self-serving then they must have been intentionally lying to avoid some legal ramifications or other negative consequences. Why wouldn't the same assumption apply to Officer Gutierrez's inaccurate report?

    "What exactly would this Officer have to gain by lying, if he knew the video would prove him wrong, when it would certainly result in disciplinary action against him or loss of his job." - I suspect that, like every other poor decision maker telling lies to cover up wrongdoing, Officer Gutierrez was just hoping that he'd somehow get lucky and the incident wouldn't attract any real scrutiny, or that maybe the video would be garbled and unclear. Folks lie all the time to attempt to hide their misdeeds despite knowing that there is video evidence that will contradict their lies. I see no reason to believe that the existence of contradictory video evidence somehow proves that someone's self-serving lies were somehow unintentional.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 12:31 pm on Mon, Apr 21, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    A member of the public Intentionally lying to an Officer to cover up wrongdoing is trying to avoid arrest or other punitive action, such as a ticket. What exactly would this Officer have to gain by lying, if he knew the video would prove him wrong, when it would certainly result in disciplinary action against him or loss of his job. Lousy analogy.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 9:44 am on Mon, Apr 21, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "Such a scenario would certainly make him at fault for not paying attention to what took place and accurately reporting it in his paperwork but it would not make him a liar......" - Do you think a police officer would accept the "I wasn't paying attention" excuse if he caught a member of the public giving him inaccurate information that obviously covers up wrongdoing?

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 9:40 am on Mon, Apr 21, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "Everyone loses especially with all the focus on PD vs Public." - Yeah, it's really too bad that the public is scrutinizing the brutal tendencies of those public employees who are paid to keep the peace. If only we'd stop paying attention, the cops could go back to living their "warrior" fantasies.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 9:35 am on Mon, Apr 21, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "You only saw the edited news version, you have to see the unedited film. He told her more than once to stay in the vehicle." - Prove it. Please provide a link to the unedited video, if you can.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 6:42 pm on Sun, Apr 20, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    Well said. There is an Us vs. Them mentality right now, and cops are not the only ones to blame. There are members of the public who are just itching to bait an Officer into a violent confrontation, whether to make the cop look bad, or to cash in on an easy lawsuit, or both. Hell, I'll bet some of the "protestors" from Santa Fe that went to Albuquerque to demonstrate against APD were bored trust fund babies and "professional activists" hoping to provoke the police.

     
  • AGarcia posted at 3:34 pm on Sun, Apr 20, 2014.

    AGarcia Posts: 16

    Or maybe she's being over the top to justify a suit? Why on earth get out of the car even if he only told her once? Stay in the car, call your office, let them know what's happening...unless you're trying to start something...stay in the car.

    He's new, she wasn't smart. Everyone loses especially with all the focus on PD vs Public.

     
  • El Moore posted at 7:59 pm on Sat, Apr 19, 2014.

    El Lah Mor Posts: 22

    Whomever forced this guy to resign is setting a bad precedence... Act poorly when defying a lawful order and you can get away with anything... She just refused to realize that she was going to be arrested... This is going to lead to more running from police and refusal to obey lawful orders...

     
  • Arturo Duro posted at 7:47 pm on Sat, Apr 19, 2014.

    arturoduro Posts: 3

    Another "Good Guy with a Gun", she'll never drive a cab again.......she just hit the lottery!!!!

     
  • Yvonne Cartee posted at 5:24 pm on Sat, Apr 19, 2014.

    Were_you_there Posts: 7

    She was giving misinformation. The officer resigned without reason, incorrect he gave his reason and was represented by a union rep. Simply stepping back from the officer has no bearing on what happened next. The video is to dark to see the amount of force, was she armed, high, drunk, have a knife or other weapon. The officer didn't know at the time. Ultimately that answer was no, but how is he supposed to know that. The lack of light doesn't allow is to see if she made any gestures or movements that could be seen as threatening. That fact that it was a female means nothing, I am female and can take care of myself which has included knocking the crap out of men twice my size, so sex has nothing to do with it. Following instructions is for the safety of both the officer and the person who was pulled over. Do you know who Michael Astorga is? The family of officer James McGrane does. That driver was in the car when he shot him. Judgement on the officer or the cab driver is premature at this tine.

     
  • Yvonne Cartee posted at 5:07 pm on Sat, Apr 19, 2014.

    Were_you_there Posts: 7

    He did give her clear instructions. You only saw the edited news version, you have to see the unedited film. He told her more than once to stay in the vehicle. A lot of the drama was for the cameras because no one was detaining her while she screamed her head off. Her not having a weapon was after the fact, he didn't know what that status was. Hoe many officers are shot during routine stops. SFPD is going to use this officer as a scapegoat because of the paid press at APD and the DOJ. SFPD doesn't want to be next. I don't live in SF, but even I know how to stop at a railroad crossing. If she is too stupid to follow simple instructions, then she shouldn't be driving!!!!

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 5:23 pm on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    It seems a little a little odd to me that Officer Gutierrez would have lied intentionally on his police report if he knew that there was a very good chance that the camera video/audio would contradict the content of his report regarding how many times he told this person to stay in the car. Most posters here are ready to crucify him. I think there is a possibility that he had a poor recollection of how many times he told her to remain in the car, and simply made a stupid mistake for which he has now paid because he had to resign. Such a scenario would certainly make him at fault for not paying attention to what took place and accurately reporting it in his paperwork but it would not make him a liar......

     
  • albert garcia posted at 4:01 pm on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    acdc1969 Posts: 21

    Cops in santa fe never lie never did...

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 3:17 pm on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    I guess it could be argued that her aggressive manner as she got out of the car (slamming her door shut, and immediately approaching the Officer, who was walking away with his back to her) could be construed as a potential threat, and the fact that he intended to return to his car to run her license and vehicle info through the computer (therefore her actions interrupted the performance of his duties/ investigation), but something tells me you will argue that point too........

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 2:59 pm on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    Go back and re-read Ms. Cartee's posts. She's the one that seems to imply that Ms. Westervelt's status as a spokesperson makes her unreliable, I just asked Ms. Cartee to clarify.

    Ms. Cartee's response to my request for clarification on that first implication was to imply that Ms. Westervelt's statements are unreliable because someone else at SFPD was feeding her unreliable information, which sure seems like Ms. Cartee is implying that someone at SFPD is lying, and I again asked her for clarification.

    The story above clearly tells us that the video contradicts Ms. Westervelt's previous statement that "Bourgeois 'disobeyed multiple commands, including many to return to the vehicle,' before the officer decided to use physical force." Since that portion of Ms. Westervelt's previous statement was clearly drawn from Officer Gutierrez's falsified police report, I think you're probably right that it's unfair to extrapolate from that an assumption that lying is an endemic problem at SFPD. But if they don't want their organization associated with liars, they should do a better job of weeding out guys who beat women and then lie on their reports to justify it.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 2:40 pm on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    The reason Officer Gutierrez's brutal take-down of Ms. Bourgeois occurs in the dark periphery of the video is because she clearly backs up in response to the officer's aggression, which seems to be the opposite of presenting an imminent and articulable threat to the officer.

    In the video Officer Gutierrez utters "don't get out" at the forty-two second mark, just after he begins to turn and step away from Ms. Bourgeois' vehicle. That single utterance certainly wouldn't have met the repeated, clear, and with authority standard as it was taught to me. Regardless, I'm not aware of any law that authorizes a police officer to detain or arrest someone for ignoring an officer's commands unless doing so presents an imminent and articulable danger or threat, or interferes with the officer's ability to perform his duties, or if ignoring those commands constitutes resisting arrest for some other crime the individual is under suspicion of having committed.

     
  • Mark Ordonez posted at 1:26 pm on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    marcoordonez Posts: 644

    LOL, that's all you have to fall back on? Suit up or shut up? You wanna worship these cats, have at it. I aint' drinking that cool-aid. I actually have a brain with my own thoughts. See I've buried a friend that died at the hands of a blood lusting cop and I've also was a pallbearer for my uncle who was one of the good ones. He even admitted in his 40 plus years on the force there were a lot more dirty violent cops than he'd like to admit. That law enforcement loved the bullies and the bullied, someone with a chip, an edge.
    Go back to cleaning your guns Grimler hoping you'll get to use'em on someone someday. Stay sheeply.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 1:24 pm on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    Actually, the dash cam video is not that clear- at the point he makes physical contact with her, the footage is pretty dark, so how much physical resistance she put up is not easy to determine. And he did tell her once, clearly in my opinion, to stay in the car. He said that to her as he faced her car window, before he walked back towards his car. You assert that the commands were "never given" - not true. I assume you mean they were not given multiple times, as he apparently claimed in his report- and although he may not have been honest about how many times he gave those commands, I am not aware of any specific policy or law that dictates how many times such commands must be uttered before an Office can make an arrest decision.
    But you continue to dodge my point that an Officer can give lawful commands for a person to remain in a vehicle, even though there is no specific law prohibiting a person from exiting their vehicle during a traffic stop.. You made a big deal about debating that point with Ms.Cartee, but seem unwilling to acknowledge that your implication that the SFPD spokesperson was lying, or that lying is an endemic problem at SFPD was off base. As for more "facts"-I would be interested to know what other officers said in their reports regarding the cabbie's level of physical resistance- and whether her statement compares truthfully with the video.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 12:43 pm on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    What facts are you waiting for? The dash-cam video is pretty clear. The clear and concise commands Officer Gutierrez should have made, and that he falsely claimed to have made, were simply never given.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 12:09 pm on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    YOU appeared to be "narrowly focused" on the issue of The spokesperson's assertion that there is no "law" forbidding a person to exit their car during a traffic stop, as evidenced by your exchange with Ms.Cartee. that is the part of the discussion I was responding to. I have not passed final judgment on the Officer's actions yet, since I do not have all of the facts. It does appear that you have, though.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 11:33 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    I think it's interesting that you've decided to narrowly focus on the circumstances in which Officer Gutierrez would have been lawfully justified to detain or even take down Ms. Bourgeois, but you won't acknowledge that those circumstances don't describe this incident.

    Sure, there are circumstances in which a person can be restrained or even arrested if they refuse an officer's repeated clear and concise commands to get back in their vehicle, such as when failure to follow those commands endangers someone imminently, interferes with a police investigation, or are an articulable threat to the police officer. But the brutal beating Officer Gutierrez gave Ms. Bourgeois wasn't lawfully justified just because she got out of her taxi.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 10:36 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    The exchange between you are Ms Cartee, where the issue of whether or not there was a "law" specifically relating to the Officer's order for her to remain in the car, was the part of the topic I was addressing. You really like to beat a dead horse, don't you? You would be a pushover in a debate.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 10:18 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    This particular officer's brutal response is the topic at hand, isn't it?

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 9:35 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    My response was to your assertion (based on the spokeswoman comments) that there is no "law" preventing a person from getting out of a car during a traffic stop. You replied to that by going back to this particular Officer's response.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 8:43 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    Anyone familiar with men who abuse women could tell you that abuse isn't limited to just physical beatings, abusers also feel the need to intimidate and humiliate their victims.

     
  • Joseph Hempfling posted at 8:36 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    joehempfling Posts: 186

    Video clearly shows in my opinion that it was a clear case of an unprovoked assault AND an abuse of authority by the Officer. I guess who felt his authority was being challenged and he obviously over reacted. The scene is reminiscent of what happens, I am sure, everyday in a War Zone and had the cab driver been a male would have even gotten worse. Give this guy a hearing, pull his badge, decertify
    his commission as a law enforcement office in our state AND help make our streets safer !

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 8:32 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    Mr. Grimler, how 'bout you hire on as a cab driver and work the streets awhile? Cabbies get to work with all the same late night drunks, miscreants, and dangerous characters that police officers encounter, but cabbies do it without the protection of a badge or a gun, and they do it for less money.

    No?

    Yeah...thought so.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 8:28 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "At this point, Officer Gutierrez ...should have given here clear, concise orders to get back in her car. If she had then refused to return to her car, he would have been within his rights to take physical control of her until backup Officers arrived."

    But he didn't give her those clear and concise orders. And that makes all the difference between a justifiable take-down and an unwarranted assault.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 7:53 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    In my opinion, if an Officer tells someone to stay in a car, and then that person immediately gets out (in this case, slamming the door in an aggressive manner), that would become a safety concern for the Officer. At this point, Officer Gutierrez had no idea if she was armed with some type of weapon, and should have given here clear, concise orders to get back in her car. If she had then refused to return to her car, he would have been within his rights to take physical control of her until backup Officers arrived. The spokeswoman, in my opinion, is saying that there is no specific law or ordinance that forbids a driver from getting out of his/her car during a traffic stop. That does not mean an Officer is not allowed to give lawful orders for drivers or passengers to return to vehicles. Allowing drivers or passengers (possibly armed) to wander around during a traffic stop puts the Officer in a potentially dangerous situation. While he is distracted- say, writing a ticket, they could attack the Officer, using a weapon on their person, or maybe grabbed from the car trunk.
    Before you say this is just paranoia, spend a little time researching how many Officers have been seriously injured or killed in just such a scenario.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 7:36 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    Can you be more specific about which part of the SFPD Use of Force Policy you have determined is "illegal"?

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 7:33 am on Fri, Apr 18, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    As for Eiskant, many of the allegations over the years were difficult to prove (he said , she said). When there was enough evidence , he saw the writing on the wall and left. During my 20 years there, MANY Officers were disciplined or fired- the most common reason for termination? Lying in a report or lying to IA investigators. That was not tolerated.

     
  • albert garcia posted at 10:03 pm on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    acdc1969 Posts: 21

    Hey, I think being a cop is the coolest job in the world,, you get to shoot people,,,beat up women,I, think everyone should be a cop..Its sounds like a nice job...

     
  • Chris Mechels posted at 6:32 pm on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Chris Mechels Posts: 64

    To Peter Neal. SFPD Internal Affairs seems to have very real problems, as the long run of Officer Michael Eiskant illustrates. He was finally, after years, forced off the SFPD, after an incredible list of abuses, including solicting sex from the public and fellow officers, as noted in a lawsuit pending against him. Internal Affairs and EEOC Officer Ray Rael, later SFPD Chief, looked the other way.

    It seems that SFPD, and Internal Affairs, is very dirty indeed.

     
  • Chris Mechels posted at 6:22 pm on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Chris Mechels Posts: 64

    We should face the fact the Santa Fe police have most of the same problems we see in ABQ. All the DOJ findings and corrective actions apply to Santa Fe, and the State Police.

    The Santa Fe police may soon get even more violent, as 18 new officers are about to graduate from the LEA, under the "new" curriculum, put in place by Director Jack Jones without public input. His changes eliminate "Community Policing" and emphasize more shooting and violence. His changes fly in the face of the DOJ concerns and corrective actions.

    The LEA, and Director Jack Jones, have state wide responsibility for police training and policy, by their charter. The ABQ problems are directly related to the LEA incompetence, and the new changes will make it even worse. Jack Jones is entirely out of step with the DOJ report and its concerns. He is utterly clueless, and has a vicious temper to top it off. He should be removed, NOW, before he spreads even more violence and murder across our state.

    BTW, close examination of the Sante Fe police Use of Force shows it to be illegal, and this is resulting in many of the recent shootings by the local force. We need reform, now, because its getting worse.

    Attend the May 15 LEA meeting in ABQ and demand reforms, and the removal of Jones.

     
  • Michael Grimler posted at 5:35 pm on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    shooter Posts: 188

    Mr. Ordonez, you've been watching way too much fiction on TV and movies.

    Most departments teach a perfectly legitimate, non-invasive, court-accepted method of searching female suspects in the field.

    Departments that require a female officer/deputy to perform such searches are either paranoid about lawsuits or have a lot of money to spend on officers waiting around for a female to show up.

     
  • Michael Grimler posted at 5:30 pm on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    shooter Posts: 188

    Mr. Ordonez, how about you join up with SFPD, the State Police, or SFSO and work the streets a while -- show us all how real police work is supposed to be done.

    No?

    Yeah...thought so.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 12:30 pm on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "As spokesperson she tells you what she is told to tell you." - So you're saying that someone at SFPD it telling their spokesperson to lie to us? That's not very reassuring. But, considering that the police were lying when they claimed that Ms. Bourgeois "disobeyed multiple commands, including many to return to the vehicle..." maybe I shouldn't be surprised.

     
  • Yvonne Cartee posted at 12:09 pm on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Were_you_there Posts: 7

    Did you read the actual report because I can't find it to read it.

     
  • Yvonne Cartee posted at 12:06 pm on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Were_you_there Posts: 7

    As spokesperson she tells you what she is told to tell you. The bottom line is this could have been avoided if she just filled his instructions. I am not saying either was right, I will agree that both were equally responsible for what happened. If you don't want this to happen to you then stay in the damn car!!! How hard is that!! It would be the first time that a spokesperson gets it wrong.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 11:13 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    So SFPD's spokesperson is an unreliable source?

    You do know that being charged with resisting a police officer isn't the same as being convicted of resisting a police officer, don't you?

    Do you think failure to follow posted traffic signs merits a beating, a black eye, and being arrested?

    Watching the video it is clear that Officer Gutierrez only requests that Ms. Bourgeois stay in her vehicle once, not the multiple times he falsely claims in his police report. If the officer believed that a single utterance of "don't get out" justified the beating he gave Ms. Bourgeois, then why did he feel like he needed to lie on his official report?

     
  • Yvonne Cartee posted at 10:45 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Were_you_there Posts: 7

    She isn't a certified officer she is a spokes person. If it wasn't illegal then why was she charged with resistance and a slew of other things!! If you don't follow instructions not to mention posted signs, then you are equally guilty!!! Were you there????

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 10:01 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "...and failure to comply is against the law!!!!" - Um, the SFPD spokesperson clearly tells us that that is not true.

     
  • Yvonne Cartee posted at 9:45 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Were_you_there Posts: 7

    Unless you were there, judging is not your place. You only see what news editors want you too see. Regardless of who's fault this was, the bottom line is YOU FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS!!! That is what happened in Taos and that's what happened here. As the operator of the cab it is her job to make sure she has the necessary documents when you leave the garage. Being a woman does not mean she is weak, in fact she is considerably taller and her built was larger that this officer. I can't say that I would or wouldn't do the same. If you feel threatened you make split second decisions, not always the right one, but when you fight or flight instincts kick in you do what you have too. If I report to work without what I need, then I am sent home until I am prepared, because I too deal at times with life and death situations. Bottom line, if you have nothing to hide and you just FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS, she would have left with a ticket or warning, but as soon as she made the choice not to comply, she is equally responsible for what happened, and failure to comply is against the law!!!!

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 8:33 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    The original story on this incident said that the required documentation was in the glovebox of the cab all along, so Ms. Bourgeois apparently just couldn't find it quick enough in her flustered state while Officer Gutierrez was intimidating her.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 8:32 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "Getting out of one’s car after being ordered not to by police is 'not a crime,' according to Westervelt..." - I wonder, is it a crime when a police officer lies on an official police report? Because, in an effort to justify brutalizing and humiliating this woman, that's exactly what Officer Gutierrez did.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 8:30 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "Getting out of one’s car after being ordered not to by police is 'not a crime,' according to Westervelt..." - Is it a crime when a police officer lies on an official police report?

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 8:17 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    Ah, so when a woman doesn't listen and obey immediately, she deserves a beating and a black eye? Now I understand.

    What if Officer Gutierrez had calmly repeated his request that the cabbie stay in her vehicle, as he falsely claimed to have done? You, I, and Officer Gutierrez all know that's what he should have done, or he wouldn't have lied on his report to cover up his failure to do so.

     
  • Pierce Knolls posted at 8:05 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    Mister Pierce Posts: 1660

    Well, I guess we'll see, won't we?

     
  • christopher quintana posted at 12:03 am on Thu, Apr 17, 2014.

    christopher quintana Posts: 32

    this was a BS stop. all this because regis/ins info is missing. Once and a great while, paperwork goes missing. Imagine how quickly that happens in a cab that can be used by 3 people each day.

     
  • Joseph Hempfling posted at 9:12 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    joehempfling Posts: 186

    Not to add insult to injury but according to the Law Enforcement Review Board's Rules and Regulation; the officers behavior would most certainly come under "abuse of authority" or at least use of "excessive force" for which they could and should revoke his Commission i.e Badge as a Law Enforcement Officer in the State of New Mexico. It in my opinion, is a no=brainer. But don't hold your breath because like the Alburquerque Citizens Review Board they don't have the chutpaz to do it and like most similar situations in the past are keeping their fingers crossed that it just goes away.
    NOT THIS TIME !!

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 7:47 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    Ok, I'll play your game. I wonder how many potential drunk drivers this cabbie MAY have picked up, AND how many ACTUAL drunk drivers all of the Officers involved may have picked up, had she just done as she was told, which would have probably resulted in a couple of tickets , or maybe even a verbal warning. We can play what ifs all day.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 5:44 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    I wonder how many potential drunk drivers Ms. Bourgeois could have safely delivered to their homes if Officer Gutierrez had just given her a few more minutes to locate the registration and insurance documents that were in the glovebox instead of bullying, beating, and brutalizing her?

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 5:43 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "Late at night, when the bars are closing, traffic enforcement (especially DWI arrests), are encouraged..."

    I wonder how many potential drunk drivers this cabbie could have safely delivered to their homes if Officer Gutierrez had just given her a few more minutes to locate the registration and insurance documents that were in the glovebox instead of bulling, beating, and brutalizing her?

    I wonder how many drunk drivers could have been stopped by the other cops whose time was instead wasted responding to this incident created by Officer Gutierrez's impatience and his resulting brutality?

    Officer Gutierrez knew what he did was wrong, otherwise he wouldn't have lied in his police report.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 2:59 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    One thing- during the day, Officers are usually going from call to call, leaving little time for traffic enforcement. Late at night, when the bars are closing, traffic enforcement (especially DWI arrests), are encouraged, especially with less calls for service. It's not an issue of "concern"- more like practical use of time

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 2:48 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    In my experience, SFPD Internal Affairs does not look away, or sweep it under the rug, as you imply. Quite the opposite, actually.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 2:36 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    The issue of whether she "heard" Officer Gutierrez tell her to stay in the car would not be proven or dis-proven by the video/audio. It comes down to who you believe, IMHO.

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 2:22 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    Mark, it is always preferable to have a female Officer pat down a female detainee, if a female Officer is present or close by. Not sure why that did not happen in this case....

     
  • Mark Ordonez posted at 1:55 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    marcoordonez Posts: 644

    "So, are police officers generally allowed to lie in their police reports, because that's what Officer Gutierrez apparently did."

    Well Lewis, If you were to ask Francisco Carbajal, Oscar Michael, Ryan Newman, Michael Grimler, they might tell you that since the beginning of Policedom, or Law Enforcement, no cop, sheriff, deputy has EVER since the beginning of time LIED on a report. This is absolutely the first time EVER a cop has done did wrong, EVER. Did I say EVER? See cops are the cream of society, jewels of humanity and it should be a mortal sin punishable by death even questioning they could ever do something wrong. How dare you Lewis?!?!?!

    On a serious note. Yes they lie all the time on their reports and they are protected by the blue wall. This is how they are above the law and the numerous POS like Levi Chavez, Oliver Wilson, and on and on and on get away with murder.
    So you think lying on a simple traffic stop/ assault is gonna make a not lie on a report. LOL!

     
  • Mark Ordonez posted at 1:39 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    marcoordonez Posts: 644

    Question Mr. Neal, since you were a former officer.
    Is it okay that a male officer patted her down even though there was a female officer on scene?

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 1:20 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "It is a miracle the train was not in operations or in the vicinity at that time and place regardless of scheduling issues."

    Trains run on schedules. This incident happened over two and a half hours after the last train was scheduled to pass through that crossing. It's hardly a miracle that a train didn't run when it wasn't scheduled.

     
  • Pierce Knolls posted at 1:09 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Mister Pierce Posts: 1660

    "The department is conducting an internal review of the incident, Westervelt said, and if it determines that a criminal act of police brutality may have occurred, the results of the review will be forwarded to New Mexico State Police for investigation."

    There's a mighty big "if" in that statement. Somehow an "internal review" isn't quite as reassuring as I think SFPD would like it to be. Will the full text to that internal review be released to the public?

    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

     
  • Khal Spencer posted at 1:07 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Khal Spencer Posts: 416

    That last one is a good question. Who is responsible for having the paperwork in order? I would imagine if the cab was signed out to her alone, she should know where the paperwork is. I also imagine that when the officer said he would tow the cab, she could have had a panic attack.

    Which is why I wonder if there was a less tense way to deal with this. Back in Honolulu, I was once pulled over and I could not find my current insurance card in my rat's nest of a glove compartment. The officer went back and was writing me a ticket. As he was writing the ticket, I found the dang card. He actually apologized and said that it was out of his hands once he wrote me up, but that if I sent the explanation to the judge, it would be dismissed, which it was. Do we really need to tow someone? Should there not be a way to do a field check on the license plate to find out if the car is lawfully registered? Clearly, if the vehicle indeed had no legal registration or insurance, that is not a trifling offense.

     
  • Matt Pusatory posted at 1:05 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Matt Pusatory Posts: 10 Staff

    Mr. Work and Mr. Neal,

    Please note that there was an error in an earlier version of this story. Officer Jose Gutierrez actually told Dawn Bourgeois to turn off the car and give her the keys. The story has been corrected.

    -Santa Fe New Mexican web staff

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 1:01 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "Isn't the cab company responsible for having registration in the cab?" - The original story on this incident said that the required documentation was in the glovebox of the cab all along, so Ms. Bourgeois apparently just couldn't find it quick enough in her flustered state while Officer Gutierrez was pressuring her.

     
  • Kathryn Blackmun posted at 12:52 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    kab Posts: 5

    None of the officers seems to understand that's she's having a panic attack—I'd probably behave the same way she did if I was minding my own business and a traffic stop for a small violation turned into something worse. She probably was worried about losing the job, too—a 40-year-old woman driving a cab at night is probably doing it because she needs the money, and she may have been tired. Isn't the cab company responsible for having registration in the cab?

     
  • Khal Spencer posted at 12:47 pm on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Khal Spencer Posts: 416

    I've rarely been pulled over in my life (famous last words) but always try to avoid escalating a situation and I hope any peace officer reading this does the same.

    Seems there should have been a more peaceful way to iron out this traffic stop. Police need a lot of training because they have the badge and the gun. Citizens have a responsibility to be civil and please, don't panic.

    We all have our bad days; when we share our bad days with each other it gets worse. Apparently, this bad day resulted in a black eye not only to the cabbie, but for the SFPD.

    Let's be civil to each other out there.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 11:11 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "This version of events differs from a statement given by spokeswoman Westervelt the day after the event, in which she said that Bourgeois 'disobeyed multiple commands, including many to return to the vehicle,' before the officer decided to use physical force."

    So, are police officers generally allowed to lie in their police reports, because that's what Officer Gutierrez apparently did.

     
  • Maggie may posted at 11:09 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Maggie may Posts: 2

    This woman has driven me multiple times. She is a class act! She is by no means a drama queen.
    Why in the world would she or any woman deserve a black eye?

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 11:05 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    "...although if she thinks it will result in a bigger settlement check from the city , what do you think she will say?" - If the city thinks that the video vindicates their officer, then they don't have to settle, they can let a jury decide the issue.

     
  • Alice Martinez posted at 10:58 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Alice Posts: 4

    She was not obeying the officers orders. She seemed like a drama queen to me..

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 10:45 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    He initially told her to get out of the car and give him the keys- but she just gave him the keys from inside the car, prompting him to tell her to remain in the car since he already had the keys. I think it is possible she did not hear him tell her to stay in the car because she had a cell phone to her ear- I guess the issue of whether or not she heard him is for her to say- although if she thinks it will result in a bigger settlement check from the city , what do you think she will say?

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 10:02 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    The story tells us that Officer Gutierrez "transferred to Santa Fe from Mora about a year ago and was still completing a probationary period..." I'd guess that a probationary officer doesn't get to collect on his pension if he "resigns" after an incident like this, but ya never know in New Mexico.

     
  • Steve Salazar posted at 9:38 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Steve Salazar Posts: 868

    How long was he on the force? Is he eligible for a pension?

     
  • Chris Cord posted at 9:25 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Corder Posts: 21

    As I understand under Ray Rael the standard for hiring was lowered so he could claim fame for filling the vacancies at police department. Carlos Maldonado was one of them where Ray was told by the recruiting officer of the problems at State Police but Ray hired him anyway. He later claimed he was never told. Meanwhile Schaerfl and Ortiz just stood by allowing this to happen.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 9:15 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    It's interesting that Officer Gutierrez tells the cabbie both to get out of the car and then to stay in the car. Those orders are in conflict, so there was no way the cabbie could be in compliance with both of them. With those conflicting orders, Officer Gutierrez seems to be trying to create an excuse to rough up a woman regardless of what she does.

     
  • Lewis Work posted at 9:09 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Lewis Work Posts: 78

    Or maybe she was having trouble catching her breath because being assaulted by a police officer sent her into a panic attack?

     
  • Peter Neal posted at 8:18 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    PeterNeal Posts: 282

    Interesting that she was yelling for them to "get off" her, and then an Officer tells her to "calm down" because nobody is on her. If this audio is supported by the video, was she "playing for the camera"?

     
  • Paul White posted at 7:45 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Pabloblanco Posts: 45

    The X marked boxes at the track are barely legible, have been that way for months.
    It is unclear where one should stop "outside" the box.
    One would think the City or State has a responsibility to refresh the paint once in awhile?

     
  • Julian R. Grace posted at 7:17 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Logies New Mexican Posts: 108

    After watching the video it's clear both players were at fault. But in this particular incident it was up to the officer to keep it from escalating. Hence the result of a possible tort claim and a seriously damaged law enforcement career. I'm sure if officer Gutierrez had known the cab driver had such a short fuse he would have not allowed it to get out of hand. As for the City of SF it should be used as a learning opportunity for future training. The department still has plenty of problem officers and more incidents are likely until all current officers and especially cadets get trained on risk management and liability. Addressing the quality of the video cameras it's clear that the camera on Gutierrez's vehicle is not as good as the video from the officer that pulled up later.

     
  • Jonathan Collins posted at 7:15 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    jammingwithedward Posts: 5

    Three things. One, Santa Fe police seem unconcerned with traffic violations
    until the sun goes down, making driving around town a sometimes dangerous
    activity during the day. Two, was it a reasonable assumption by the officer a legally
    licensed cab company would have drivers and vehicles without registration
    and insurance? Three, once again failure to follow a cop's directions results
    in predictable consequences. As in the Jeanette Anaya case and the more
    famous incident in Taos, people who think they don't have to listen to cops
    are pointedly escalating the situation. The officer was right to resign because
    at that time of night I'm sure there were bigger crimes going on elsewhere
    and it seems a nit picky thing to write a ticket for. During the day probably
    dozens of drivers have stopped in that marked "box."

     
  • Francisco Carbajal posted at 7:14 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    FranciscoCarbajal Posts: 219

    And I guess the escalation of the situation (driver's screaming and erratic behavior) did not help either one of them when the driver refuse to listen to the verbal commands being given by the officer to stay in the vehicle. As soon as the driver stepped out of her vehicle and began walking towards the officer, by the virtue of her erratic behavior, her failure to comply to remain in her vehicle due to her own safety and the safety of the officer in question, resulted in this situation to escalate to a public safety threat for both of them. Remember the location where the traffic stop is located is on or near the train tracks and the mechanisms of the rail road crossing arms is above the driver's vehicle, etc. It is a miracle the train was not in operations or in the vicinity at that time and place regardless of scheduling issues.

     
  • Paul Duran posted at 6:53 am on Wed, Apr 16, 2014.

    Paul Duran Posts: 2

    This is the most horrendous thing I have seen for a long long time. To think that one of Santa's Best could beat up on a woman in the name of the law is unbelievable. The need to show such force for such a minor infraction of law shows how power in the wrong hands can be deadly. What is the criteria of becoming a Police Officer. Obviously the physiological evaluation of who is hired to protect the public, is flawed. Why doesn't local and state law enforcement recognize the fact that they need to evaluate applicants to protect the public from "hair trigger" officers. It seems to be getting worse. This was clearly a case of excessive force and our community is going to pay "big bucks" for mental anguish this offer has caused this woman.

     
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