The Atlanta Journal Constitution Reports on Arrest of Disabled Woman by Officer with Penchant for Arresting Anyone.

Who knows really what to make of this story other than, yet again, a public agency is going to have to part with a great deal of money to make up for one bad apple’s misbehavior. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that 40-year old disabled woman Shequita Walker was manhandled by an officer for simply affirming her right to sit in a chair on the curb while she waited for an ice cream truck to come, a practice she had engaged in continuously, without incident, for an extended period of time. The Officer, Kenneth Thomas, did not like Ms. Walker’s attitude and grabbed her wrist to cuff her, causing her to fall out of her chair onto the pavement. She was then taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital for checkups after which she was promptly arrested and thrown in jail for the night on a ‘disorderly conduct’ charge. This case would be rather unremarkable if not for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s discovery that Officer Thomas had made 32 arrests along that same area, 28 of which were for disorderly conduct or ‘more than three times the amount made by other officers.’ That’s called abuse of authority and inability to discern proper action. The Atlanta Citizen Review Board determined that Walker was falsely arrested. Walker’s lawyer hopes that this can be resolved without the need of a lawsuit against the city (read: settlement). If you can’t keep your public servants then they need to go. Abuse of power and authority will cost you money. This would not be noteworthy if not for the Officer’s penchant for arresting people on this particular charge. Booking more than three times as many people for one particular offense in an area where other Officers have not had nearly the same issues calls into question the Officer’s judgement as well as his ability to properly utilize his authority in the public space. It will probably go to court or, maybe, a settlement will be reached but that’s just damn awful: it could all have been avoided if Officer Kenneth Thomas had the discretion to pick his battles.