Home > Uncategorized > Cotton Ruling Upheld — “more than ample evidence and testimony”

Cotton Ruling Upheld — “more than ample evidence and testimony”

Martin and Siehna Cotton(Note: Heraldo has doubled the pay of frequent Herald commenter “Mitch,” and will allow him to post directly.  Blame him for this post.)

Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong has denied a retrial in the case of Cotton v City of Eureka, leaving the City on the hook for a multiple million dollar payout in the case, involving Cotton’s death while in the Humboldt County Jail, after being brought there by Eureka Police.

The complete ruling is here:


Judge Armstrong ruled:

Had the Decedent survived, he indisputably would be entitled to compensation for the pain and suffering he endured as a result of Defendants’ use of excessive force and deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs.

Judge Armstrong also stated:

Defendants completely mischaracterize the record… At trial, there was overwhelming [underlined in ruling] evidence and testimony establishing that Officers Laird, Winkle and Whitmer viciously beat the Decedent with their fists, knee strikes, kicks and baton strikes— and that their use of force was unreasonable under the circumstances

“Defendants” in this case means the attorneys for the City of Eureka.  Your tax dollars at work.

(The story is well-covered by Thadeus Greenson on the front page of this morning’s Eureka Times-Standard.  Google “Martin Cotton retrial denied” to bypass their paywall.)

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  1. Goldie
    March 22, 2012 at 10:52 am

    The officers observed the Decedent standing alone near a fence outside the Rescue Mission, though they made no effort to confirm his identity. Officer Winkle directed the Decedent to place his hands behind his back. The Decedent did not respond, and instead, remained motionless. Although the Decedent neither threatened the officers nor appeared to pose a threat to anyone else, Officer Winkle immediately sprayed Decedent directly in his eyes with pepper spray in a purported effort to “detain” him. In response to being sprayed, the Decedent raised his hands towards his eyes, at which point Officer Winkle quickly delivered a right knee strike to the Decedent’s midsection and forcefully pulled him down to the ground.
    As the Decedent lay face down on the cement on his side with his hands underneath his body, Officer Winkle delivered eight to nine additional full-force knee strikes to the right and left side of the Decedent’s body and repeatedly used both hands to shove the Decedent’s head onto the cement sidewalk. Though Officer Winkle denied striking the Decedent’s head, eyewitness Louis Valente (“Valente”) testified that he saw him use clenched “hammer” fists to strike the Decedent’s head between five to ten times. Reporter’s Partial Transcript of Proceedings, Sept. 14, 2011 (“9/14/11 RT”) at 6:18-8:7, 13:14-14:6. Valente described the sound of Officer Winkle’s fist hitting the Decedent’s head as “bone against bone” and “fist against skull.” Id. at 8:17-16. Witness Michael Gage (“Gage”) also testified that he observed the officers deliver multiple blows to the Decedent’s head.
    At trial, Officer Laird testified that he also repeatedly hit the Decedent with his metal baton, and kneed and kicked him with his boots numerous times. Officer Whitmer, who arrived shortly after Officers Winkle and Laird, jumped out of his patrol car, ran up to the Decedent, and kicked him in his rib area. He also struck the Decedent with his baton, sat on top of the Decedent (who still was on the ground), and sprayed him with pepper spray only seven inches from his face. During the fray, Officer Whitmer dropped his baton, which was then retrieved by Officer Laird, who then used it to hit the Decedent. Officer Whitmer also continued to kick the Decedent. Although all officers attempted to characterize the Decedent as non-compliant, they conceded at trial that he was not using force against them and did not threaten them or attempt to flee. Witnesses Valente and Gage also testified that the Decedent was not resisting the officers.
    Officer Stephen Watson was next to arrive. After making his way through the crowd that had gathered, Officer Watson was asked to place a spit mask on the Decedent. Officer Tim Jones then showed up. By that point, the Decedent was already handcuffed and had a spit mask over his face. To control the Decedent while he was being searched, Officer Jones used his nunchukus (a martial arts weapon consisting of two sticks connected by a short chain or rope) on the Decedent’s forearm and wrists. Unlike the other officers, there was no evidence that Officers Watson or Jones struck the Decedent with their fists, knees or batons or had sprayed him with pepper spray.
    Despite the significant amount of force applied by Officers Laird, Winkle and Whitmer against the Decedent, they failed to call for an ambulance, take him to the hospital or otherwise seek any medical attention for him. Instead, they arrested the Decedent and took him directly to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility (“HCCF”) sally port, i.e., the underground parking area.1 At trial, Defendants introduced video surveillance recordings taken from cameras located in the sally port and inside the facility which showed the officers and HCCF personnel brusquely escorting the Decedent, who appeared to have difficulty standing, from the patrol car directly to a sobering cell. Footage taken from inside the sobering cell shows the Decedent rolling around, grasping his head, and in apparent distress. Plaintiff’s expert, Harry Bonnell, M.D., testified that the Decedent’s behavior was indicative of a head injury, and that in observing the video, he was “watching a man die.” 9/16/11 RT at 53:19-23.
    Decedent was not medically examined or treated while at the HCCF. The Decedent died in the sobering cell a few hours later. The County Coroner’s autopsy report later concluded that the Decedent died of acute subdural hematoma (i.e., pooling of blood on the surface of the brain) caused by blunt force trauma. The coroner also noted bruising throughout the Decedent’s body as well as internal hemorrhaging.

  2. Fact Checker
    March 22, 2012 at 10:52 am

    The tragedy that keeps on giving. With the EPD and the City of Eureka in denial, will their bad behavior ever change?

  3. Anonymous
    March 22, 2012 at 11:14 am

    Like-minded Good-Ol’-Boys and Girls appointed, hired and elected at every level of local government, has been an endless legacy that has made every non-partial, state, federal and judicial entity (outsiders) a costly problem for poor Eureka and Humboldt County.

  4. siren
    March 22, 2012 at 11:40 am

    Maybe with the Feds and the State AG here to investigate the Del Norte DA, the Mad River Biologists and the Cara Banducci tragedy these officers will be brought to justice for their criminal acts. Our D.A. seems incapable of acting for some reason. I feel like I am living in Florida or something.

  5. March 22, 2012 at 12:20 pm

    Fact Checker, a conundrum says: “Will their bad behavior ever change?”

    NOT as long as people justify criminal conduct as “bad behavior” it won’t change.

  6. Harold Knight
    March 22, 2012 at 12:43 pm

    Where’s Joel Meilke and “Rose” on this one?

    Surely, had Cotton grabbed an officer’s baton, he could have avoided all that suffering with another “justifiable” police shooting!?

  7. Not A Native
    March 22, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    How much will this cost the public???

    The officers individually were found liable for punitive damages of $75,000.

    The city attorney stated “the individual officers have been defended in this action by the City of Eureka, and the judgments against them, upon approval by the City Council, will be paid by the City.”

    Does anyone think Madsen/Brady/Newman won’t approve covering these officers penalties?

    If the city wants to appeal further, it will have to post bond. “Accordingly, to stay execution of the judgment pending appeal, Defendants must file a supersedeas bond equal to 125% of Plaintiffs’ $4,575,000 award, i.e., $5,718,750.”

    And whatever part is paid by insurance will ultimately come from increases in future insurance premiums. Even HiFi knows that.

  8. Bloc Jock
    March 22, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    It’s worse. The insurance judgement will be paid by taxpayers all over Humboldt County because of the municipal insurance pool that many local govs are part of. Tyson’s mismanagement will distribute the pain everywhere, a Republican reverse tax break.

  9. Mitch
    March 22, 2012 at 1:16 pm

    For me, the new news here is the judge’s statement that defendants (City of Eureka’s attorneys) completely mis-characterize the record.

    How much does Eureka pay its attorneys to fight cases like this, that could have been settled? The County settled its liability in the matter, and it sounds like Eureka’s liability was worse, despite the fact that the death took place in the jail.

    Somebody will be paying nearly $5 million for this. Is it Eureka’s insurers, or are they smart enough to have a clause preventing payout in the event of findings of police brutality?

    I could be wrong, but I don’t think it’s all that often that judges use words like “indisputably” and “overwhelming.”

  10. Anonymous
    March 22, 2012 at 2:56 pm

    Does anyone know if these officers are still employed at EPD?

  11. 69er
    March 22, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    Why is it that the many defenders of Gar Nielsen are not on here, this did take place on his watch and he also defended the action of his officers?

  12. skippy
    March 22, 2012 at 3:08 pm

    Important news, Mitch, and an outstandingly illustrative excerpt from the proceedings, Goldie.

    The Times-Standard’s Thadeus Greenson noted back on September 27, 2011 that Cotton family attorney Vicki Sarmiento hoped the case would “have a chilling effect, deterring law enforcement from using excessive force” in the future. “Certainly, officers have a job to do and they should do it, but they also have to exercise restraint. The community expectation is high of people who have guns, batons and pepper spray. This says, ‘Let’s exercise some restraint,’” Sarmiento said.

    But while Sarmiento said she hoped the verdict would have a deterrent effect, EPD Interim Police Chief Murl Harpham incredulously said he hoped it doesn’t. Harpham issued a memo to all department employees telling them at the time: “Don’t pay attention to those anonymous blogs written by cop haters and don’t let the decision influence the way you do your duties because that can get you hurt or your partner hurt, or killed. … You can’t be out there worrying about being sued.

    In a Times-Standard interview, Harpham added, “I think they were wronged,” he said of the officers, ‘They’re just good people, and they wouldn’t do what’s been claimed here out of viciousness or anything like that.”

    The jury, however, apparently disagreed with Harpham’s assessment. They determined the Eureka police department acted “maliciously, oppressively or in reckless disregard” of Cotton’s constitutional rights. They also found that two of the arresting officers — Adam Laird and Justin Winkle — used excessive force during Cotton’s arrest and that they and Office Gary Whitmer were “deliberately indifferent” to Cotton’s medical needs when they booked him into jail without first having him medically treated for his injuries.

    U.S. District Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong believed the jury’s verdict was supported by the evidence in the case. She noted, “The overwhelming evidence presented at trial demonstrated that the three defendant officers repeatedly inflicted blows to (Cotton’s) body … with their fists, knees, legs and batons as he lay on the ground. As such, plaintiffs’ counsel had a substantial evidentiary basis upon which to argue to the jury that officers ‘beat’ the decedent.

    It should also be noted that District Attorney Paul Gallegos’ investigation determined there was no evidence of criminal liability in Cotton’s death. Apparently the jury and District Judge Armstrong disagreed with Mr. Gallegos’ assessment, as well.

  13. Mitch
    March 22, 2012 at 3:17 pm

    Regarding former police chief Garr Nielsen, he’d been on the job for about four months.

    Here’s Japhet Weeks’ article on the killing, from 2008: http://www.northcoastjournal.com/news/2008/03/27/who-killed-martin-cotton/

    There was also initial speculation that Cotton’s death was due to an overdose, but the coroner’s office ruled the death due to blunt force trauma. Thadeus Greenson: http://www.times-standard.com/localnews/ci_6709373?source=pkg

    Yes, the police chief and DA united behind the officers. If anyone finds that surprising, they probably aren’t paying much attention.

  14. March 22, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    Good points, Mitch.
    Quoting: “For me, the new news here is the judge’s statement that defendants (City of Eureka’s attorneys) completely mis-characterize the record.”

  15. March 22, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    “Where’s Joel Meilke … on this one?”

    I’m right here, Mr. Knight, trying to learn more. Try it some time.

  16. Louie
    March 22, 2012 at 4:18 pm

    The people responsible to pay the awarded verdict should be all of your crooked city officials who tried to cover it up. The DA, the coroner(now your mayor), your city council, the cops involved, EPD and sheriff chiefs. They were all the crooked people who tried to cover this up!! Wake up Eureka!!

  17. High Finance
    March 22, 2012 at 4:46 pm

    If Cotton was just “standing alone” and “motionless” then why the reports in the Times Standard of him engaging in several fist fights in the minutes leading up to his arrest ?

  18. Mitch
    March 22, 2012 at 4:51 pm

    Ah, Hi Fi poses the eternal question, “can a person be moving at 5:00 and yet be standing still at 5:02?” Hard to know, hard to know. I don’t think that’s covered until Philosophy 2.

  19. Mitch
    March 22, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    Here’s the first paragraph of the “Factual Summary” offered by the judge. I’ve bolded the part for the Phil 2 curriculum.

    “The following facts are taken from the testimony and evidence presented at trial and the record in this action. On or about August 9, 2007, the Decedent was involved in a fight with another individual, Kevin Healy (“Healy”), at the Eureka Rescue Mission (“Rescue Mission”) in Eureka, California. In response to a call from Bryan Hall (“Hall”), the manager of the Rescue Mission, Officers Laird and Winkle arrived on scene around 4:40 p.m. By the time the officers arrived, however, the Decedent’s altercation with Healy had ceased.

    For additional paragraphs, you’ll need to click the link.

  20. Anonymous
    March 22, 2012 at 7:44 pm

    In all fairness Nielsen had only been chief for a few months when the Cotton incident occurred. And he was taken to the woodshed when he dared criticize the Sheri Moore incident or any of the other questionable actions of EPD. He spent four years trying to turn around a backwater police department and was left to twist in the wind for his efforts. Murl and the boys have undone so much of the good work and the next chief will likely be an EPD alum who will be quite happy with the status quo having been part of the old SWAT brotherhood that symbolized the culture of EPD. That department will never again hire a progressive chief. The “good old boys” will see to that.

  21. Harold Knight
    March 22, 2012 at 8:34 pm

    ‘I’m right here, Mr. Knight, trying to learn more. Try it some time.” (Joel Mielke).

    Why bother, you learned nothing from the needless Fortuna shooting,

  22. Anonymous
    March 22, 2012 at 9:50 pm

    There goes Measure O

  23. Anonymous
    March 22, 2012 at 10:31 pm

    Who would have guessed Harold Knight to be so thin skinned.

  24. Harold Knight
    March 22, 2012 at 11:00 pm

    OH, “Shut the fuck up” (Joel Mielke).

  25. What Now
    March 23, 2012 at 12:50 am

    High Finance says:
    March 22, 2012 at 4:46 pm
    “If Cotton was just “standing alone” and “motionless” then why the reports in the Times Standard of him engaging in several fist fights in the minutes leading up to his arrest ?”
    Suddenly the “liberal media” has credibility in the eyes of Highly Fried.
    Better reload and keep greasin’ that elbow, numbnuts.

  26. Anonymous
    March 23, 2012 at 5:33 am

    Shut the fuck up Joel Mielke.

    That could be a bumper sticker.

  27. March 23, 2012 at 6:18 am

    And people wonder why all my violent fiction is set in and around Humboldt County.

  28. March 23, 2012 at 7:46 am

    “High Finance says:
    March 22, 2012 at 4:46 pm

    If Cotton was just “standing alone” and “motionless” then why the reports in the Times Standard of him engaging in several fist fights in the minutes leading up to his arrest ?”

    That’s an easy one, EPD is full of people that lie, especially Murl Harpham.

    Murl, Where is my 1000 dollars, you know your officers used batons on Andrew Hamer…his case was dismissed,I was sitting right beside you when it was tossed, and now you are facing a multimillion dollar lawsuit from him for brutality and failing to provide medical care.

    The footage of the beating is going to be used in the civil suit Murl, as well as a still photo showing you standing over the person being beaten and a recorded quote from you from KMUD claiming no officer used a baton on anyone.

  29. Anonymous
    March 23, 2012 at 8:09 am

    Louie, Were?

  30. Anonymous
    March 23, 2012 at 8:13 am

    Skippy Yay!!! You’re back :)

  31. Anonymous
  32. Duke of Euke
    March 23, 2012 at 8:50 am

    If Paul Gallegos ever gets the balls to charge these cops with the felonies that they have admitted to in Federal Court, they will have to have a venue change.

    If Gallegos can’t find the balls to charge them then he needs to retire or be recalled. It is as simple as that.

  33. RefFan
    March 23, 2012 at 8:52 am

    Just a quick question, was it ever determined that the altercation he was said to be in minutes earlier did not contribute to his head injury?

  34. Mitch
    March 23, 2012 at 8:58 am


    I don’t believe that can ever be determined with certainty. However, there is no indication in any documents I’ve looked at suggesting that he was showing symptoms of a head injury prior to the interaction with police. (LSD, yes. Head injury, no.) And, based on the descriptions of the police interaction, referencing the sound of bone on bone, etc…, it seems like it would have been appropriate to seek medical attention following the interaction.

    Regardless of the cause of the head injury, the judge was clearly outraged by the official neglect surrounding the prisoner’s medical needs. A doctor referred to the jail video as “watching a man die.”

  35. Mitch
    March 23, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Anonymous 8:39,

    Excellent article by Thadeus Greenson. The article also goes into the City of Eureka’s insurance, and the role of the insurance carrier in legal activity.

    Unfortunately, when I click on your link I come to the T-S’s paywall.

    The T-S apparently does not restrict visitors arriving from google. A google search on “Eureka appeals Cotton verdict” will get you your information.

  36. Mitch
    March 23, 2012 at 9:11 am

    Except for the fact that the citizens of Eureka are probably paying the city’s lawyers well, I actually feel kind of sorry for the lawyers. It must be embarrassing to have to defend this, and must be pretty hard to rationalize.

  37. Goldie
    March 23, 2012 at 9:28 am

    I an not sure they are embarrassed. I would imagine they feel indignant, perhaps victimized, and misunderstood. Fox News Syndrome. Most certainly they employed and well paid. Nancy Delaney was also the attorney in the Pepper Spray case.
    Lie, appeal, repeat.

  38. Splint
    March 23, 2012 at 9:37 am

    Call Paul Gallegos 707 445 7411 and demand that he do his job and prosecute these cops. This is outrageous. Where are we living, Sanford Florida?

  39. pitchfork
    March 23, 2012 at 10:38 am

    The original ruling will not stand, this federal judge displayed extreme prejudice against the police officers charged. Many of her rulings during the case will be over turned.
    There have been many actions by EPD in the last ten years that they should have been convicted of, This unfortunately not one of them.

  40. March 23, 2012 at 10:48 am

    I actually feel kind of sorry for the lawyers. It must be embarrassing to have to defend this, and must be pretty hard to rationalize.

    Nancy Delaney has no shame. Remember when sheriffs swabbed the eyes of protesters with pepper spray-soaked Q-tips? She defended that.

  41. anon
    March 23, 2012 at 11:31 am

    So this insurance pool the city is in, do the costs of EPD being on the losing end of all these lawsuits (Hansen, Cotton, Owsley etc ) get spread around to other member departments and result in increased costs to the taxpayers? Or do they cancel Eureka’s coverage because it’s become a huge liability?

  42. Anonymous
    March 23, 2012 at 11:54 am

    You’d know all about the Owsley suit, wouldn’t you anon. Wait until Garr gets found personally liable, what a hoot that will be.

  43. What Now
    March 23, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    Nancy Delaney is a lacuna of personal AND professional integrity.

  44. High Finance
    March 23, 2012 at 12:02 pm

    To read the cop bashing comments on this blog one would think this court ruling came from Allah himself instead of a mere human being.

    The city is appealing.

  45. Mitch
    March 23, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    Allah, Hi Fi? Why Allah?

  46. Goldie
    March 23, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    Cop bashing, HiFi? Have you read the findings of the judge and the quotes from the trail? The citizens of this town are asking for a police department that operates within the law.
    The city is appalling.

  47. Anonymous
    March 23, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    The more important question is “Allah, why Hi Fi?”

  48. RefFan
    March 23, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    Since most ppl on here feel that our local police depts are made up of blood thirsty UFC wannabes, how about voting a disbandment of all law enforcement and police the streets & hills ourselves? Im not saying that the police in this case was in the wrong, which it surely sounds like it, but why is it you ppl feel that any physical action against criminals/law breakers is unacceptable? I’m just flabergasted at all the negativity our law enforcement is receiving and feel that we will only get sub-standard ppl in those positions becuz our community is so citicizing & hateful. For the pepper spray incident, wish I got to see that!! Law breaking protesters disrupting the peace for tax paying workers & disregarding the law; how about I get some of my redneck friends and come sit inside your house and refuse to leave.

  49. High Finance
    March 23, 2012 at 3:58 pm

    The point is, dear slow ones, this judge has proved that judges are fallible and make mistakes.

    RefFan, I know that is a rhetorical question and we all know the answer. The fact is, those posters here who bash cops all the time are a tiny minority of the public at large.

  50. Louie
    March 23, 2012 at 5:57 pm

    Im glad i moved far away from your twisted county. Half the people agree with the guilty cops out of fear or being brainwashed, a quarter wanna hold up signs at the courthouse or post online thinking its going to change anything and the last quarter could give a crap, because theyre to busy growing pot. I used to love Humboldt County and now when i think about it, it makes me sick!!

  51. Anonymous
    March 23, 2012 at 8:25 pm

    “….judges are fallible and make mistakes.”

    High Finance is still bitter over the Nuremberg trial outcomes.

  52. March 23, 2012 at 8:59 pm

    And how has the judge’s summary somehow proven that “judges are fallible,” HiFi? I know how difficult it is for blog commenters to use logic, or present evidence, but by all means, please proceed.

  53. Highly Financed
    March 23, 2012 at 11:47 pm

    “Why don’t we assume that the officers did the best they could under the circumstances?”. Joel Mielke.

    It hasn’t even reached the appellate court yet!

  54. March 24, 2012 at 10:09 am

    HiFi, if you were on the other side of this issue, instead of pointing out that there’s a pending appeal, you’d be saying, “The trial is over. Justice has spoken.”

    I’m assuming that you are not going to answer my question.

  55. High Finance
    March 24, 2012 at 11:33 am

    How is it fallible Joel ? Are you serious ?

    A guy on Meth beats up at least one other person and then supposedly he is peacefully hanging around and is the victim of cops ?

    Maybe the county is responsible for neglect after he got to the jail, but Cotton was responsible for everything that happened up to that point.

    The cops on the street put their necks on the line to protect us everyday. The least we can do is support them when they do. But you few sit nice and cozy behind your computers and slam them every chance you get.

  56. Harold Knight
    March 24, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    In Eureka a belligerent drunk beats up his wife every day. When reported, officers rarely make arrests, the perps are often belligerent. When’s the last time Eureka police officers beat one of them to a lethal pulp?

    It’s every citizens’ responsibility to condemn needless, costly police violence, and America’s record fatalities among industrialized nations.

    We need better trained police, enough to walk a beat again, and the liberal candidates who will demand it.

  57. Goldie
    March 24, 2012 at 12:20 pm

    What I would like to see happen in regards to our police force that we ask so much of is that they receive all the training and support they need. I would like to see them be confident of their skills so that violence is not their only option. One could say that the beating of a man to near death is not an action of brutality but rather fear on the part of the responding officers. As citizens we constantly send our officers into situations that are out of the ordinary, out of control, dangerously unpredictable. I often see the young cadets driving around. What will prepare them for the situations they are going to face? We will soon be hiring a new chief of police and I can only hope that the new hire will be one who believes in the value of preparing the officers will skills and knowledge that will keep situations like this tragedy and law suit from ever happening again. No one wins.

  58. Mitch
    March 24, 2012 at 12:31 pm


    Exactly. Thanks.

  59. March 24, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    Again HiFi, I’m assuming that you are not going to answer my question. Perhaps you could take the time to read it again.

    And don’t pull that “cops on the street put their necks on the line to protect us everyday,” bullshit with me. I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time around police officers. Questioning their conduct during an incident is something that a good supervisor does every day. Are you going to tell that commanding officers “sit nice and cozy behind [their] computers and slam [officers] every chance [they] get”?

    Yes, there are those low-lifes, like Harold Knight who will assume guilt on the part of police every time the job requires deadly force, but cops will still come, even when he calls.

  60. Labtech
    March 24, 2012 at 3:15 pm

    Having blithely embraced diametrically opposed arguments, Joel Mielke complains that Hifi hasn’t clarified his position.

  61. March 24, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    I haven’t “embraced” any argument, Labtech, you illogical nitwit.

  62. Labtech
    March 24, 2012 at 3:38 pm

    Joel Mielke needs to read his own contradictory posts before attempting to argue with others.

  63. March 24, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    Again, I haven’t “embraced” any argument, Labtech.

    I’m assuming that one doesn’t need much of an education to become a lab tech.

  64. the shadow knows
    March 24, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    Labtech = High Finance.

    He is a sock puppet it is obvious.

  65. Labtech
    March 24, 2012 at 4:05 pm

    Having failed at clarification, Joel Mielke attempts yet another clumsy attack. Alas, scientific research isn’t like cartooning. It requires math and science literacy and a great deal of actual work.

  66. March 24, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    And what would you know about “math and science literacy and … actual work,” Labtech?

  67. Labtech
    March 24, 2012 at 5:17 pm

    We already know that Joel Mielke is a math and science illiterate. Both areas require proofs and reproducible results.

    You can’t fake it.

  68. March 24, 2012 at 5:30 pm

    When have you provided “proofs and reproducible results,” Labtech? You’re almost unbelievably idiotic.

  69. Labtech
    March 24, 2012 at 7:06 pm

    Having failed repeatedly to make a coherent point here, Joel Mielke attempts to insult his critics. Even that fails.

    Can he do anything right?

  70. K
    March 24, 2012 at 7:40 pm

    I haven’t seen this level of repartee since the 90s usenet. You go “labtech”

    Just got your first computer?

  71. Labtech
    March 25, 2012 at 8:36 am

    Nah. But can’t resist sticking a pin in a hypocrite’s balloon.

  72. March 25, 2012 at 9:57 am

    Labtech insists that I somehow produce “proofs and reproducible results,” when I haven’t made any assertions here (except that he is an idiot, which he has provided abundant evidence for). Yet, when I ask him to cite something in the judge’s ruling that would support his claim that this judge is “fallible,” he resorts to grandstanding with specious arguments.

    One wonders how he feeds himself.

  73. labtech
    March 25, 2012 at 11:00 am

    When a complete match and science illiterate like Joel Mielke sputters impotently, attempting to insult his way out of a discussion, we begin to suspect his illiteracy may include ordinary English.

    Pity the poor snob with no audience…

  74. Verbena
    March 25, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    I have not had time to read all of the above comments, but I WAS at the trial. I also spoke with witnesses soon after Martin Cotton was killed.

    As to this question from RefFan: “Just a quick question, was it ever determined that the altercation he was said to be in minutes earlier did not contribute to his head injury?”

    The City of Eureka could give no evidence that Martin Cotton was even hit in the head before the cops came and bashed his head and body on the concrete.

    Had Thadeus Greenson or ANY local media been at all interested in the testimony and evidence in the case, I was sending updates and a phone number and email to get those. But, not one iota of interest. Really sad.

    Nancy Delaney (like the rest of the good ole boys) is so greedy and without conscience, she will keep going with this even though it was very clear what happened. They murdered that man.
    Delaney put her kids through college on the “No Pepper Spray” case, which went through 3 trials and 7 years- milking the public to defend torture. In the end of that, the settlement offer of the activists (no using pepper spray on sedentary non-violent protesters) is what was decided by the court.

    And yes, these cops are still on the force. I have photos of a 120lb woman who was bruised all over her body (and her head injured) but Winkle. There are tons of complaints of brutality by Adam Laird. Whitmer thinks he’s manly with his big motorcycle boots he can KICK a person with. And then there is Joshua Siipola, who went back to Afghanistan, so he got out of the case- he’s a thug too, back on the streets, armed.

    These guys are violent criminals. I don’t know why anyone would want to protect them by justifying their actions- That goes against everyone’s own interests.

  75. Verbena
    March 25, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    “And yes, these cops are still on the force. I have photos of a 120lb woman who was bruised all over her body (and her head injured) but Winkle. ”

    I made a couple of typos. “these cops” refers to the Eureka officers who beat Martin Cotton. And the woman who was bruised all over her body and had her head slammed to concussion was a victim OF Justin Winkle.

  76. Harold Knight
    March 26, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    “Yes, there are those low-lifes, like Harold Knight who will assume guilt on the part of police every time the job requires deadly force”. (Joel Mielke).

    No worries Joel…you’re not an unpleasant fool!

    Only a judge or jury can assign guilt, while hyperbole apparently eases yours.

    Your blanket dismissal of the opinions from the police professional in the Fortuna police killing might work in getting you off a jury, but it speaks volumes on your ego.

    The questions he raised, and that you refuse to consider, remain glaring and obvious; amid a national, and local, pandemic of police abuse, (the result of understaffed, poorly trained officers…like every other divestment in public services taking place).

    Clearly, your breakfast martini was late, once again.

    Maybe taxpayers will be more fortunate this time, and 26 year old Jacob Robert Newmaker is without surviving family to sue.

  77. High Finance
    March 26, 2012 at 6:52 pm

    I fail to understand the hate that drives people like Verbena and Harold Knight.

    Perhaps it is, as some people say, that you feel powerless over your own lives. You respond to that sense of helplessness by hating all authority figures, Cops, Republicans, your fathers …..

  78. worker bee
    March 26, 2012 at 7:25 pm

    It is the people at AA who are powerless over their lives moron.

  79. Jim Douglas
    March 26, 2012 at 11:48 pm

    Heraldo’s “High-Finance” provocateur relies on the word “hate” so often, rather than rational debate, some people would say that he projects onto others what he most despises in himself.

    Cowardly, unmitigated weakness and an overwhelming sense of vulnerability and fear…the stuff that tyrants are made of.

    Psychology and history 101.

  80. High Finance
    March 27, 2012 at 7:27 am

    Pot, kettle, black Jim Douglas. Pot, kettle, black.

  81. Harold Knight
    March 27, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    Jim Douglas forgot to mention High-Moronic’s other well-worn juvenile retort… pot, kettle, black….

  82. High Finance
    March 27, 2012 at 4:35 pm

    Sometimes the truth hurts Harold.

    You’re not so old that there isn’t time to make something useful of yourself.

  83. Harold Knight
    March 29, 2012 at 12:29 am

    I earned the right to blog all day, just like you, right??


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