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January 31, 2012

Some Backstory for the DC Occupier Tasing: He'd Already Been Asked To Walk Away From Cops

There is some dispute on the right as to whether this was warranted or police brutality.

Although it's fun to laugh at hippies getting tased (oh boy is it), surely we don't want cops getting "taser happy" at protesters, generally.

I think this story ads some context. First, the video again, because someone suggested that would unite us all. And I can't argue with that.

We don't see what happened prior to this, or what was happening elsewhere, of course. We don't sight Ryan "Buzz" Lash until after a minute.

So here's what happened before the video picks up.

While blanketing the campsite with warnings of the approaching deadline on Sunday, the police were confronted by a protester identified as Ryan Lash. In the video below, Lash is seen shouting an insult at the officers, who proceed to follow him as he walks away. Just before he is tased, Lash tries to pull away from the police as they attempt to detain him, shouting “I have done nothing wrong”.

And below, from a commenter, who says she was there, and is an Occupier.

The police had come into the tent area to post warnings about Monday’s noon deadline. They were putting notices on everyone’s tents, including Lash’s, and he came out and started yelling at them and began removing the papers. He was so upset police told him he needed to step away, which he did. He walked to the other side of the park, but they decided to follow him. It’s not really clear why – he did exactly as they asked him to. Maybe it was because he was the only person verbally assaulting them.

My guess -- which is just a guess -- is that he did walk away, as directed, but then began yelling at the cops and tearing down other notices.

And at that point, the cops decided, we let you skate on the first notice-tearing, now you're under arrest.

And they probably warned him he was in danger of getting arrested when he got all upset at them earlier.

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posted by Ace at 04:19 PM

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