Death in the Devil’s Chair

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

I have a new article up at HuffPost looking at the death of Nick Christie, the use of pepper spray and restraint chairs, and the general culture of jailhouse abuse.

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16 Responses to “Death in the Devil’s Chair”

  1. #1 |  A Critic | 

    Ya think maybe at some point you could suggest to HuffPost that they revamp their interface?

    I’ve always liked your webpage. Simple, clean, friendly, usable, exactly the opposite of HuffingtonPost. I have a reasonably decent PC and their site bogs up my Firefox every time…

    Sincerely,

    A Complainer

  2. #2 |  EH | 

    HuffPo is a political form of Gawker’s business, so I’d say they’ll make their site less dandy some time after the apocalypse. Does HuffPo’s design make you click more? They make money from that.

  3. #3 |  ElScorcho | 

    Awesome article. That is a sad situation all the way around. Unfortunately the only people that will pay for the crime is the taxpayers once again. I hope that the lack of accountability in situations like this doesn’t lead to mob justice against our law enforcement officers that get away with preventable homocide.

  4. #4 |  Sojourner | 

    Re:
    I hope that the lack of accountability in situations like this doesn’t lead to mob justice against our law enforcement officers that get away with preventable homocide.

    Eventually it will. If the police and the courts keep protecting the cops. The restraint chair seems more like a license to torture than a way to protect an inmate. Putting pepper spray in a hood before you put it on someone in a restraint chair? That’s not a lack of training, that’s sadism at it’s worst.

  5. #5 |  Charlie O | 

    “While the Florida Sheriff’s Association told HuffPost that it has no guidelines on the use of restraint chairs, there seems to be a strong consensus that the use of pepper spray, stun guns, or other compliance tools after a suspect has been restrained is at minimum excessive force, and possibly a crime.”

    C’mon Balko, “possibly a crime”?? WTF? They tortured this guy to death. I’m pretty THAT’s a crime. You know, MURDER. Some one might get fired, but odds are, no one will be prosecuted for this.

  6. #6 |  FloO | 

    Jails and prisons are terrible places to be. You have to wonder what kind of sick person chooses to be there everyday.

  7. #7 |  picachu | 

    Someone should invade that horrible country and bring it’s people democracy.

  8. #8 |  lurker | 

    Can you report the article here? I’m interested in reading it but I won’t click through to HuffPo…

  9. #9 |  EBL | 

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZVv99lWGEpo

    I do not want to make light of this, but the police need to be more like Andy Griffin and less like Barney Frank…and this is like Barney Frank on meth.

  10. #10 |  Pablo | 

    As one commenter at HuffPo asked, where are all the good cops in this? Why aren’t they doing anything about these thugs?

  11. #11 |  Max | 

    so can the restraint chair & massive pepper spray be used on inmates at Gitmo? Oh only American citizens. right.

  12. #12 |  picachu | 

    Max “so can the restraint chair & massive pepper spray be used on inmates at Gitmo?”

    In some ways local police have a lot more power and even less accountability than the military.

  13. #13 |  Kristen | 

    @ #1

    I’d suggest you stop using Firefox and start using Chrome.

  14. #14 |  Woog | 

    huffingtonpost.com is unreadable using Firefox and NoScript, even after allowing the huff domains AND the initial AOL content distribution network to run scripts. (The topmost images and page “header” loads, but everything else apparently requires obscure and apparently-unrelated sites to run scripts.) This trend of sites essentially demanding visitors to “lower all shields and accept what’s coming without knowing who it’s coming from” harkens back to the bad old days of IE with scripting-based browser exploits running rampant.

  15. #15 |  Max | 

    picachu: sorry, I should have put the sarcasm tag on. If the military used such tactics at Gitmo, there would howls of outrage & demands for war crime trials. My opinions regarding local police are no longer fit for public utterance.

  16. #16 |  John David Galt | 

    To “A Critic” and “Woog”: try installing the Firefox add-on “RequestPolicy”. This lets you control, by site, which of the various ads and other slow-loading crap will actually load when you view a web page.

    I’m not against site owners showing ads, within reason, but when they slow down your system so much that the site isn’t worth visiting, this fixes it.

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