Thursday, January 26, 2012

Two brave policemen shoot 43-year-old woman in the back with tasers

Dees Illustration
Brandon Turbeville
Activist Post

Over the last few years, the use of tasers by police has been the center of some controversy amongst a few members of the general public. While the devices were originally justified as a means to subdue violent criminals without using lethal force, the fact is that tasers have not replaced lethal force at all. They have, however, replaced reason and common sense.

Instead of a tool to reduce lethal contact, tasers have become nothing more than cattle prods to be deployed against anyone who does not immediately obey a police command, regardless of how illegal or ludicrous that command may be.

In an example of just this type of situation, one may look at the case of Patricia Franks-Martin, a 43-year-old schoolteacher from Galivants Ferry, South Carolina.

On January 6, 2012, Franks-Martin was riding (not driving) in her vehicle in Horry County around 10 pm when police pulled behind the truck and decided to run her license plates, which were expired. As a result, the officers pulled the vehicle over.

When the driver stopped the truck, Franks-Martin allegedly got out of the car and questioned the officers as to why they ran the plates on the vehicle, which belonged to her. Officers then demanded that she present them with her license which she allegedly refused to do. The officers claim that she then became irate and began to use profanity, even going so far as to drink a beer in front of them.

The officers then claim that they noticed two open containers in the vehicle and that Franks-Martin told them to write her a ticket for the open-container violation. The officers allege that when she was told that she was under arrest, Franks-Martin told them they were not going to arrest her and began walking away from them.

The police also claim that as she was walking away, she stated, “you’ll have to shoot me before you arrest me.”

At this point, the brave policemen immediately jumped into action, tasing Franks-Martin in the back and cuffing her when she hit the ground.

Franks-Martin has been charged with suspended vehicle license, open container of beer in a vehicle, and resisting arrest. She has also been placed on administrative leave at her job.

If the account of the officers is to be believed, (which is highly questionable in its own right considering the general level of honesty amongst the majority of police in this country) then Franks-Martin was no doubt being obnoxious.

But obnoxious behavior is not cause for tasing.

Put aside, for a moment, the ridiculous nature of police that sit in wait like wild predators for citizen prey to drive by so they can “run their tags.” Put aside the fact that asking permission (in the form of a license) and paying rent (in the form of registration fees) to drive on the roads you paid to build and maintain is itself an overreach of government power. Also put aside the fact that having an open container of alcohol in your vehicle is considered a crime, or that simply walking away from an officer is considered resisting arrest.

Of course, all of these issues are relevant. However, while serving as legitimate condemnation of the officer’s behavior, are only peripheral in nature. The heart of the matter is whether the officers were justified in their use of force. In this instance, it is clear that they were not.

The fact is that walking away from the police, “not listening” to an officer, or even resisting arrest (really resisting, not just walking away or expressing opposition) is not justification for tasing someone with thousands of volts of electricity. Particularly, when there are at least two officers and the victim is one 43-year-old (allegedly) drunk woman.

Indeed, one must ask exactly what threat she actually posed to the officers? After all, one should keep in mind that she was tased in the back. This is because she was walking away from the officers – not toward them. The illegitimate use of force against Franks-Martin was a cowardly act, to say the least, not to mention a dangerous one.

Police tasers have been implicated in hundreds of deaths as reported by Amnesty International. In over 90% of those deaths, the individual was unarmed. Amnesty International tallies the taser deaths at 334 since 2001. However, an independent blog, Electronic Village, has added 164 more names to the list, raising the death toll to 515 deaths committed by police wielding tasers. The AlexanderHigginsBlog calculated that, on average, police kill one person every week with a taser.

Although the justification for the use of tasers by police has been based on the argument of self-defense, and the ability to defuse a violent situation without using lethal force, it is clear that outfitting police with these devices is an enormous hazard to public safety.

Tasers are no longer tools of non-lethal defense. Indeed, they were never used in this manner or intended for this purpose. They are merely cattle prods designed to force the citizenry to obey the dictates of their low-level controllers by means of “pain-compliance.” Tasers are, essentially, the modern version of the whip.

While any abuse by police is obviously unfortunate, behavior that once occurred only in large cities such as Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles, has now spread even to small rural communities and towns all across the country. The police officer who was once known and respected within small communities has now been replaced by largely unintelligent authoritarian goons. Thuggish police are now the norm regardless of where you travel.

For years, police have been trained to see anyone outside their brotherhood, meaning the American people, as the enemy. Training for police has become more militaristic in nature; consequently, domestic police forces have come to resemble a foreign occupying military.

In the end, tasers are only a small part of the increase in the militarization of police. However, if Americans continue to allow their local law enforcement to become more war-like, isolated, and violent, the ability to create, implement, and maintain a police state will be made all the easier for those who wish to establish authoritarian rule.

American citizens must speak out now, especially those in small towns and rural areas such as Galivants Ferry and Loris, South Carolina. Because of the size of the communities, all hope is not yet lost for reestablishing some modicum of common sense and responsibility to local law enforcement.

Do not be afraid to let your police chief, your Sheriff, and even your individual police officers know that you do not support unwarranted police violence, and that you will not tolerate it if it occurs.

If you are unsure how to get started in speaking out, feel free to contact the Horry County Sheriff’s Department and tell them how you feel about tasing women in the back for not listening to commands.

Brandon Turbeville is an author out of Mullins, South Carolina. He has a Bachelor’s Degree from Francis Marion University where he earned the Pee Dee Electric Scholar’s Award as an undergraduate. He has had numerous articles published dealing with a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, and civil liberties. He also the author of Codex Alimentarius - The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies and Five Sense Solutions. Brandon Turbeville is available for podcast, radio, and TV interviews. Please contact us at


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Anonymous said...

If it is truly a substitute for deadly force then it should have to meet the same criteria for its use.

Anonymous said...

Recent police excesses suggest to me that whereas Bush didn't learn from Hitler and introduce a police state at home before murdering abroad, Obama has learned.

Anonymous said...

..this is an excellent essay in terms of relating the "development" of the modern police force to the long term ability to control the populace, the writer says,..mostly like cattle,...

I grew up in a family of corrupt law enforcement I've watched the evolution of mostly beer drinking, overweight ticket writers, an almost military style enforcement of what we now refer to as the "law",...sad, sad,sad...


RJ O'Guillory
Webster Groves-The Life of an Insane Family

Anonymous said...

I'm 60 years old and have known since I was a child that cops are the enemy of the people.

Jolly Roger said...

Anonymous said...

"I'm 60 years old and have known since I was a child that cops are the enemy of the people."

Yes. I'm 50 and I've always known the same thing. It's the new gereration that's been brain-washed to think cops are "heros" and that all rule violations need to be immediately reported to authorities. We used to call those kinds of kids "stinkin' rat bastards" when we beat 'em up after school.

Today things are different. Don't trust anyone UNDER thirty.

Anonymous said...

Fortunately, I live in Canada where the Police are a little better...but not by much. If those two rotten Cops are reading this...You can kiss my Royal Canadian Ass. You two are nothing but spineless cowards. I also m 50. I *never* talk to Cops, period.

One of the Last True Patriots said...

They say that absolute power corrupts absolutely! Laws (over 40,000 were passed in 2011 alone!) , power (assumed given by the people, but actually taken with malice) and a badge (worthless tin if their oath is not really honored truthfully) doesn't give law officers unlimited rights in interacting with the public no way whatsoever. Military action on domestic American cotizens will only further a transtion into a totalitarian police state where we all will either obey or die. This is not the vision of the U.S.A. from over 200 years ago at all! What happened to united we stand?

Anonymous said...

I-too- live in Canukistan, (And I am 68 years old) and here's a song I learned as a kid:
I got a song and it won't take long
All coppers are bastards.

NickelthroweR said...

The police state has been monitoring and tracking us. I say that we start using that technology and start monitoring and tracking them. We need to let them know that we know who they are, who their family members are, where they live, who their friends are (if they have any) etc.

I'll gladly be the first to stand up and say, "Hey, if YOU are not doing anything wrong then you have nothing to fear."

Anonymous said...

We live in a police state. Too many will not recongize this fact until they become a victim.

Anonymous said...

There are good cops and there are bad cops, there are good people and there are bad people. there are good laws and there are bad laws. and never shall they all agree.

Anonymous said...

Short cops are the worst. It's no wonder so many are shot and killed on the spot when confronted. If you're going to be a dick, prepare to be treated like a dick.

Anonymous said...

So OK we know how some cops are, but why in the world would a school teacher be drinking and driving and mouthing off to the cops? How STUPID can one be?

Alice Lillie said...

The woman did absolutely *zero* that was or should have been illegal. Open container laws are nothing but a cash cow for the government. An empty beer can is not an indication that a driver is drunk. It only means there is an empty can. As for the expired plate...this is *so* minor that a ticket or even a warning should have been enough. Actually, car registration is also another cash cow. There is absolutely *zero* impact on road safety in car registration.

Anonymous said...

We have a prosecutor in Floyd Co. Indiana that told a 15yr. old kid that got caught with pot, that if he violated his probation he would go to prison and be raped! So when the kid got in a argument with his mother the sheriffs were called. He got his fathers antique B.A.R assault rifle and shot two sheriffs killing one and then himself! Thats what happens when police and prosecutors put fear in our childrens head! When questioned the prosecutor said he was commander and chief of the county police force! What arrogance!

Anonymous said...

@ Anon January 27, 2012 2:38 AM


Scott Free said...

"I have never seen a situation so dismal that a policeman couldn't make it worse." --- Brendan Behan

Anonymous said...

Most Cops now have a very low I.Q. Usually under 100. Is it any wonder they have difficulty with decision making? More and more of them are going to be getting shot dead because of their bad decisions. This has all been put in place by the establishment to more easily control the officers who in turn collect revenue for their cities and towns.

sjsrana said...

Folks, if you are willing then follow simple procedures to free yourself and others from 'SLAVERY' of this ruined system!

Simple solution of civil disobedience...
CREATE "2012 NOT-VOTING" LIST till we have accountability!

Anonymous said...

Like some pyromaniacs become fire-fighters-some crazies becom psychiatrists-so some with an abnormal interest in crimes becomes police.

Anonymous said...

Best to out-smart an opponent and not egg him on.

Anonymous said...

A tazer is a modern day whip. Comply! Or be whipped! Just like in the days of slavery. Comply! ( SNAP!). AND WE LET THEM!

Sparkie said...

I can't help but wonder how much longer the motto "To Protect and Serve" will be emblazened on the sides of police cruisers, since that very idea has long since become a nostalgic memory! The arrogance I see among police officers is nothing less than frightening! They really do have an "Us Against You" mentality....and the fed is arming them as if American citizens were an invading force which must be subdued!! Plainly, this CANNOT be allowed to continue unchecked!! Last time I looked, the Constitution of the United States of America described our Republic as "Of the People, By the People and For the People"!!! It seems to me that there are people who really need some reminding about that!

Anonymous said...

We all should get stencils that say
:Our Own Interests
in the same font of that motto
:To Protect and Serve,
And spray paint it on all the police cars to at least make it more truthful.

To Protect & Server Our Own Interests

Jack Norris said...

"Anonymous said...

"I'm 60 years old and have known since I was a child that cops are the enemy of the people."

Yes. I'm 50 and I've always known the same thing. It's the new gereration that's been brain-washed to think cops are "heros" and that all rule violations need to be immediately reported to authorities. We used to call those kinds of kids "stinkin' rat bastards" when we beat 'em up after school.

Today things are different. Don't trust anyone UNDER thirty. "

This is exactly what I talk about when I complain that my generation is the most CONSERVATIVE generation since the Victorian era.

I'm jealous of older people who got to party when they were teens. Do you see what my generation does now at parties? We stand there trying to look rich. We don't have wild sex or do wild drugs. We are so BORING as a generation.

And this loss of life is destroying the world. I'm from the ghetto so I CAN not call police, its a code that if I call police I should be killed. I don't question the code because its something that I, and the rest of my neighborhood grew up with.

I think the love of police goes hand in hand with the hip hop culture, once a culture of rebellion that told people to "stick it to the man", has become a culture of cars, clothes, money, and an unnatural "maturity" that my generation has.

As for the people outside of the ghetto in my generation, I think they're weird. People under 30 aren't supposed to like the police. What the hell is wrong with them?

That's straight up evil. The most evil people are usually the same people who refuse to engage in silly acts of mischief. My generation is so un-mischeivous, yet so evil and so serious and so ignorant.

Ignorance and a hatred of mischeif and silliness go hand in hand with evil. You can't act silly at parties any more, you have to look cool and have "swag" or whatever.

All the maturity my generation displays is so fake. The people in the ghetto are evil in a different way and I don't agree with that either since I'm the only 23 year old in my neighborhood who's never joined a gang. I simply follow the code of honor around here, don't talk to police.

That's not an excuse to say that a girl that gets raped "deserved it" because "**** snitches". On the other hand you have "ghetto" people who see things THAT way. That's just as evil. I'm sick of it. So angry, so tired. Going to bed now have fun every one. Just wanted to spill my mind out here after I read that comment pertaining to my generation, something I notice when I venture outside my crappy little ghetto neighborhood. All those country kids...there's something wrong with them. People under 30 aren't supposed to like authority.

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