Friday, September 16, 2005
  When Injustice and Incompetence Meet
So the police in South La. totally drop the ball in a crisis, to the point of engaging in looting themselves, but they have no problem falsely imprisoning a 73-year-old grandmother and deaconess. Why am I not surprised.

Merlene Maten, a diabetic, was locked up by Kenner police for two weeks with an exhorbitantly high bail. She was arrested for looting when she went to her car to get food from a cooler.
(AP) - "There were people looting, but she wasn't one of them. Instead of chasing after people who were running, [the police] grabbed the old lady who was walking." said Maten's daughter Elois Short, who works in traffic enforcement for neighboring New Orleans police. ... [P]olice snared Maten in the parking lot of a hotel after floodwaters swamped her New Orleans home. She had paid for her room with a credit card and followed authorities' instructions to pack extra food, they said.
"She was retrieving a piece of sausage from the cooler in her car and planned to grill it so she and her husband, Alfred, could eat. The parking lot was almost a block from the looted store.
"The arrest report is short and assigns the value of goods Maten is alleged to have taken at $63.50. The items are not identified.
"When officers arrived, the arrestee was observed leaving the scene with items from the store. The store window doors were observed smashed out, where entry to the store was made."
"And the original judge who set $50,000 bail by phone - 100 times the maximum $500 fine under state law for minor thefts - hadn't returned a week's worth of calls."
It is still unclear whether Maten has yet been released.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." - Martin Luther King.
Would it surprise anyone to learn that the New Orleans police department has been listed as the most corrupt department in the Nation for the last 20 years?
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