another meeting, blog post by John Hoff
JNS blog continues to be amazed by how completely mainstream Minneapolis media, including the Star Tribune and WCCO, have been snookered by "activist" Al Flowers over what happened during his arrest, giving this guy far more credit and air time than his dubious story deserves.
Hit 30 to 40 times? REALLY?
He doesn't look like he was hit SIX times, and if I had to guess, those head injuries are the result of a..
...CRAZED HEAD BUTT MANEUVER, not by police but by Al Flowers.
How did Flowers get that CUT on his head? If I had to take a wild, flying guess, it happened from Flowers grinding his bald noggin against the CHEST of a struggling officer and encountering the edges of a BADGE...which still represents law and order, yes, even inside the house of Al Flowers while serving an arrest warrant on a member of Flowers' family.
Once handcuffed inside a police car, I'm guessing Al Flowers MESSED HIMSELF UP FURTHER, either out of pure violent tantrum or a crazed thought of injuring himself to make the police look bad, or some of both. I literally can't imagine Al Flowers sitting in a police car in cuffs without a lot of screaming, kicking and flailing. My word, it must have looked like a somebody trying to dance "the bird" while jacked up on "angel dust" in a confined space.
OF COURSE he's going to hurt himself EVEN MORE. You want to arrest a member of the family of Al Flowers, better bring along a STRAIGHT JACKET and TRANQUILIZERS.
Whatever happened, I hope to the heavens above it's all caught on videotape. You know what would calm the community? KNOWING WHAT REALLY HAPPENED.
I'm sure all viewpoints can agree on THAT.
One point of contention in this controversy appears to be whether the police allowed Flowers to "examine" the arrest warrant. I'm guessing the doe-eyed media reps raising this faux-legalistic point have never been in the middle of the chaotic reality of a family member being arrested.
No, Virginia, police don't have to stop what they are doing and pull out a warrant for any bystander to "examine" before continuing with their arrest. Obey their commands and DO NOT ATTACK THEM WITH YOUR FISTS. You'll find out what your family member was arrested for when you arrive at the jail to inquire about bail. Jump in the middle of an arrest and at least TWO people will require bail.
This isn't ROCKET SCIENCE.
Allow me to elaborate further on the basis of my speculation about what happened during the arrest...
The history of Al Flowers growing loud, scary and physical is well-documented and can be found, for example, on YouTube...
YouTube video, embed code available to all with no
particular restriction on the video.
Now The police department is expressing "frustration" they can't comment on "the rest of the story" about this arrest and have to stand still and take one egg-in-the-face after another, accused of brutalizing a community activist.
Incredible. This new police chief has tried more of a tactful and gentle "social worker" approach than any previous police chief, and this is the barbaric ingratitude and sudden political embarrassment she gets in return: a back stabbing by the radical, implacable anti-police elements in the community who are instinctively trying to cover up for the all-too-predictable bad behavior of Al Flowers.
The Vikings used to send "beserkers" into enemy lines, warriors who fought in a crazed, trance-like fury. But time and time again, our local anti-police activists with a radical vision for society have sent Al Flowers, harnessing his temper and theatrics. But now the accidental victim appears to be a police chief more friendly to the viewpoint of Al Flowers than any police chief in memory. She can't even ANSWER the serious, shocking accusations against her department.
Well, no such restriction on speaking about this incident exists on this blogger...
I find it hard to believe officers would arrive at the home of the NOTORIOUS Alfred Delano Flowers to serve an arrest warrant upon one of his family members (!!!) and not have videotape rolling, preferably from three angles. Certainly there is some kind of audio record and hospital records.
Release them all, I say. Since Al Flowers is inviting (courting, demanding!!!) public scrutiny over this incident, he should be agreeable to such a release.
In the meantime, let us review some of this guy's well-documented history of growing loud and physical when things don't go his way.
This is the guy who tried to shout down Mayor Rybak at a ribbon cutting ceremony, as documented in the YouTube video above. This is the guy who disrupted a press conference and SHOVED the chair of the Public Safety Committee from behind. Here is YouTube video of THAT incident.
Flowers should have been arrested for assault at the press conference incident, but instead he quickly sued THE HEAD OF THE PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE in federal court upon an accusation of "assault by deliberate backwards toe stepping." I was barely able to finish a quick snack purchased right after the jury convened before they were back with a verdict, dismissing all of Flowers' claims. How well I remember those 911 calls played for that jury, with the shouting voice of Al Flowers captured in the background, shrieking like a loon on a Minnesota lake.
Now Flowers sits in front of WCCO's cameras with his grandchildren around him, and seems oh-so-gentle and reasonable. But what did police confront at that house when they came to arrest Flowers' family member? No doubt something even worse than what's depicted in the two videotapes above, and something worse than the 911 calls played for that federal jury.
Flowers reportedly hit a police officer with his fists and I am absolutely inclined to believe that accusation based upon YEARS of observing Flowers in action from close range, once so close I thought I was going to get hit by a flaying elbow. Check out this photo, below:
Al Flowers is to the left, Don Samuels is to the right. This photo was taken right after Samuels was twice SHOVED. This photo shows where I stood when witnessing the shoving incident. So have I seen Al Flowers in action? Heck, I was pressed into a wall trying to GET BACK.
So if the evidence is there of an assault upon a police officer, Flowers shouldn't be able to get away with outrageous, extra-legal behavior by once again throwing up legal chaff and muddying the waters with a baseless civil suit.
If the evidence is there, Flowers should GO TO PRISON.
But, hey, let's examine the evidence. If it shows police brutality, then let it be punished. If it shows Flowers attacking with his fists, let him be punished. If there's bad behavior on BOTH sides, let BOTH be punished or, well, maybe better to call it a draw and everybody attends anger management. I have my opinion about what probably happened but videotape could PROVE what happened.
It could even prove me COMPLETELY WRONG.
Doubt it, though. Highly doubt it.
So release it all. Put it all in the public eye. And if there's a videotape of this incident...
Get the popcorn. Past incidents involving Al Flowers were mere prelude.
This might be the grand finale of the colorful career of Al Flowers, the sudden and shocking end of an era.