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Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Embattled Dallas Police Officer Robert Powell resigned from the force

It seems that every one including Mayor Tom Leppert of Dallas, Texas is happy and pleased at news today that embattled Dallas Police Officer Robert Powell resigned from the force.

As reported by the Dallas Morning News, asked to elaborate during a break at today's Dallas City Council meeting, Leppert says he believes Powell's resignation is "a good solution" following an incident last week that sparked international outrage for what Dallas City Council member Angela Hunt has already called "cruel" and "irrational."

Powell's conduct "does not reflect on the city of Dallas. It does not reflect on the police department," Leppert said. "It didn't show the judgment that our police department should have."

Last week, Powell detained National Football League player Ryan Moats and his family as they attempted to enter a Plano hospital to be by the bedside of Moats' dying mother-in-law.

The woman died while Powell questioned Moats for about 15 minutes in the hospital parking lot after he rolled through a red light while driving to the hospital.

Dallas Police Chief David Kunkle immediately questioned Powell's actions and placed the officer on administrative leave.

AAPP: You remember my post about the
heartless bullying of black men by police, again ... caught on tape. This time it's Police delaying an NFL player from seeing his dying mother-In-Law. The NY Times says it best when they said, a Dallas police officer makes death even worse. The Dallas News is also on point when they write, Editorial: Dallas cop doesn't deserve his badge.

The Dallas Morning News provided an unedited Dallas police dashboard camera video shows traffic stop of NFL player Ryan Moats. The Dallas Morning News provides the nearly 17-minute video shows the entire incident involving Houston Texans running back Ryan Moats and Dallas police officer Robert Powell. Moats was rushing his wife and two of her family members to a hospital, where his mother-in-law lay dying. She died while Moats and his wife's grandfather waited outside the hospital for the officer to issue a ticket. Edited

Moats and his family had gotten a call saying his mother-in-law was dying.
Video from a dashboard camera inside the officer's vehicle, obtained by Dallas-Fort Worth station WFAA-TV, revealed an intense exchange in which the officer threatened to jail Moats.
He ordered Moats' wife, Tamishia Moats, to get back in the SUV, but she ignored him and rushed inside the hospital to see her mother, Jonetta Collinsworth, 45, and was by her side when she died a short time later. She had breast cancer.

"Get in there," said Powell, yelling at 27-year-old Tamishia Moats, as she exited the car. "Let me see your hands!"

"Excuse me, my mom is dying," Tamishia Moats said. "Do you understand?"

Moats explained that he waited until there was no traffic before proceeding through the red light and that his mother-in-law was dying, right then.

Moats couldn't find his insurance paperwork, and was desperate to leave.
"Listen, if I can't verify you have insurance...," Officer Powell said. "My mother-in-law is dying," Moats interrupted.

As they argued, the officer got irritated. "Shut your mouth," the officer said. "You can either settle down and cooperate or I can just take you to jail for running a red light."
By the time the 26-year-old NFL player received a ticket and a lecture from Powell, 25, at least 13 minutes had passed.

When he and Collinsworth's father entered the hospital, they learned Collinsworth was dead, The Dallas Morning News reported in today's editions.
The Moatses, who are black, said they can't help but think that race might have played a part in how Powell, who is white, treated them.

"I think he should lose his job," said Ryan Moats, a Dallas native.

Powell was placed on disptach duty pending an investigation. The ticket issued to Moats was dismissed, Lt. Andy Harvey told WFAA-TV.

"There were some things that were said that were disturbing, to say the least," he told the Dallas Morning News.

Powell told police officials he believed he was doing his job, said Dallas Police Assistant Chief Floyd Simpson.

AAPP: I'm glad this guy resigned. Is this the end? I'm not sure. Maybe there needs to be some re-training of all officers, regarding the role of the officer, to "protect and most importantly, to serve."

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