How oft we hear the words, "I'm just doing my job" from
government bureaucrats. We are going to here explore the inner-thinking of
these type of people.
I now hold in my hand a letter from a federal
prisoner incarcerated in the federal prison in Alderson, West Virginia. But
there is something very different about this prisoner. He was a police
officer "just doing his job," and because he was "just doing his job,"
according to his own testimony, he now faces ten years.
He says, "I was a decorated police officer in Prince
George's County, Maryland -- until I was sentenced to spend 10 - years in jail
-- for doing my job -- All this -- over a dog bite and ... an unfair trial."
He says, "I look around these walls -- decorated with
the pictures my son draws to cheer me up and I shake my head in wonder ... how
did I get here?"
His story is that he was a decorated police
officer that was very well trained in working with, and use of, his police
dog, Valk. On the particular occasion here in question, he was in a
neighborhood that had been plagued with a lot of burglaries, and he
witnessed what he believed to be a burglary suspect who "made a run
for it" at the sight of him. He says, "I released Valk, to stop this
dangerous suspect just as I'd been taught -- with a procedure called 'bite and
hold'. Valk did his job." The man, Mendez, was treated for dog bite
at the hospital, and then released.
Within the passage of time, according to him, "a
Justice Department prosecutor saw a way to make a name for herself. You won't
believe it, but she claimed -- I violated Mendez's civil rights when I stopped
him from escaping! I was arrested for doing my job and catching a criminal!!!
The local media started digging up anything they could about our police
department -- true or false. It got the public all riled up. ....
"They didn't care if it meant throwing me in jail --
for doing my job! .... They stood outside yelling threats and obscenities
at me as I walked into the court. I was terrified."
"All I knew was I couldn't breathe as I heard them
convict and sentence me -- without a fair trial. 10 years for doing my job --
protecting our community..."
He says, "Since the trial, my attorneys have discovered
there is a Federal law preventing police officers and firemen from serving on
juries. So there wasn't even a question of getting a jury of my peers! The very
people who would have understood correct and accepted police procedures, fellow
police officers, were prevented from serving.
"I know this is my last chance. Dear friend -- that's
why I desperately need your help. Because if I can't take advantage of this one
last chance...I may spend the next ten years in a jail cell instead of raising
"I can't tell you how it tortures me as I sit rotting
in jail ... thinking about how I put my life on the line every day as a police
officer ... and had to resign in disgrace because of a dog bite!"
He says his last hope is LELDF (Law Enforcement
Legal Defense Fund), through whom he wishes to challenge the constitutionality
of the Federal law that precludes his own fellow police officers from serving on
his jury. It is for this reason he argues that his trial was unfair. After all,
he argues, he is innocent because he was just doing his job, and who would know
better about his job than his own fellow police officers.
Ironically, those brought up on war crimes during
the Nuremberg trial all argued in their defense that they were "just doing their
jobs and following orders." Hence, the asserted conclusion sought for
justification was that throughout all their atrocities
and bloodshed, no one was guilty. Rather, it was just an unfortunate
A few years ago I sent payment to the DMV for
renewal of my auto registration per their request. They received my payment
evidenced by the cancelled check, but never sent the registration tab.
As a result, I was stopped on the freeway by the California Highway Patrol. I
showed him evidence of payment to the DMV, but he nevertheless, in
violation of the California Vehicle Code, cited me for non-registration of my
vehicle. When I complained that he was violating the law, he said, "I'm just
doing my job." Barbie, who was sitting in the car told him, "Why don't you just
go somewhere else and do your job." I appeared in court and argued to a
full-fledged judge, (not a commissioner), that this California Highway
Patrolman, who was not present, willfully violated the very Vehicle Code he
claimed to be enforcing.
The judge called for a ten minute break, and before the
break ended he came out with the Vehicle Code rolled back in his hand and said
to the prosecutor, "Mr. Branson is right, I am going to have to dismiss this
case!" I said, "Good, place your decision on the record so I can have it." The
judge said, "How can I do that, I don't have jurisdiction?" And I said, "You
have just made a decision, and it is your decision that I want on the record."
The bottom line was that the judge just disposed
of the case while on break, and refused to make any disposition on the
record of the case. I sued the California Highway Patrolman for willfully
violating state law. The State of California entered on his behalf and
argued that this officer was just doing his job as they had ordered him, and
therefore was not liable for his actions. I amended my complaint
to argue that the State of California has an official policy, practice
and custom of ordering their law enforcement officers to violate the very
Vehicle Code they were out there "enforcing," to wit, the official job of
the California Highway Patrol was to violate State Law.
By this time I had learned that the entire system of
law was a big joke, and that the courts would cover for the State of California.
What they came in saying was that I could not sue the State of California, and
as a practical matter, they were right because no court would allow the State of
California to be found guilty of willfully violating State Law.
Nonetheless, I proved that the official policy of the
State of California was to willfully violate State Law. But I remind you,
ignorance of the law is no excuse, and you must obey the law. I believe they
call this the height of hypocrisy, if I am not mistaken, or have they now
changed the definition of "Hypocrisy?"
California is hopelessly entangled in politics and
unable to escape the net of its own vices. Its corruption and evil is beyond
measure, all covered up by a judicial system that does not understand the
meaning of the word "Justice." I am looking forward to the day when
J.A.I.L. shall dominate California, and I and all the people shall shout praises
for the changes that will be made here. -Ron Branson
"..it does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless
minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds.." - Samuel Adams
"There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who
striking at the
-- Henry David Thoreau