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Sunday, February 11, 2007

Tell me lies, tell me sweet little lies...

From the January 23 Public Safety committee hearing, watch and listen as Department of Public Safety Commissioner Leonard Boyle and Hartford Chief of police, Daryl Roberts, falls on Gov. Jodi Rell's sword and spread misinformation (a.k.a LIE) regarding the arrest of freelance journalist/blogger Ken Krayeske.

Some things to consider when you watch and hear the lies.

1. Chief Police officer Roberts stated that Krayeske was "aggressively approaching the governor" when arrested although several witnesses as well as a a Hartford Courant reporter who was on the scene give a different account of the incident.

2. Krayeske was arrested by the police AFTER he photographed Gov. Rell on the parade route.

3. Krayekse's name was placed on a "secret list" which was distributed among the police officers and was singled out as a "threat."

Oh, I could go on forever so I'll just let the video speak for itself.

UPDATE: I've just been told that State Sen. Andrew McDonald, D-Stamford, and state Rep. Michael Lawlor are "drafting bills that would require law enforcement to use greater care in assessing the potential threat posed by political dissidents."

Brian Lockhart did write-up on the proposal in today's Stamford Advocate:
Lawlor said he is concerned state police oversold Krayeske as a threat to their Hartford counterparts.

The legislation he and McDonald are proposing could prevent a re-occurrence by defining political dissidents versus threats; limiting the circumstances for surveillance on dissidents; ensuring that security briefings include reminders to respect constitutional rights; and creating a legislative oversight committee to review the procedures every few months, Lawlor said.

"The problem here is there was nothing about Ken Krayeske's history that would lead one to believe he's an actual, physical threat to the governor," Lawlor said. "The most he'd be a candidate for is heckling or trying to talk to the governor in the parade. I have no problem . . . if a cop stood next to him as the governor went by, asked him for ID or hassled him for a little bit. But they didn't. They arrested him on sight."

Lawlor and McDonald also are pursuing legislation to better control bail amounts and ensure they are not artificially inflated to detain individuals.

Boyle's memo to Rell does not explain why his bail was set at $75,000. Lawlor, a former prosecutor with the state's attorney's office in New Haven, said the amount is "ridiculous."

"Something extraordinary happened in the Krayeske situation where, by all accounts, it appears bail was used to deprive (him) of his liberty long enough to get past the governor's ball," McDonald said.
This quote from Lawlor should alarm everyone (as a blogger, I know it concerns me bigtime).
Lawlor said he has "anecdotal evidence" that such actions are becoming more routine in Connecticut.
In other words, if it happened to Ken, it could happen to anyone.

No concerned people...very concerned.