Earlier in the week, we shared a video of now former Chicopee police sergeant Daniel Major angrily choking a woman while yelling at her to "shut up." The victim, Maylene Maldonado, was on PCP at the time and yelling but was handcuffed and not acting violently toward the police. Two readers left us comments, both saying that the video shows the failure of the police officers in the video to deescalate the situation.
Here is a comment Adam Friedman left on our Facebook page:
If you watch the video, the cops were very cool and straightforward with her most of the time. She was on PCP, which makes her potentially dangerous to begin with. She started freaking out about her lip [piercing], yelling about how she wanted them to take it out for her. The cops did not want to take her piercing out of her lip. They told her no in a calm way, and she got louder and louder -- essentially she threw a tantrum. Then the senior cop just got fed up with it and wanted to force her to shut up, so he briefly started to choke her. Obviously, he should be punished in some way.
The real solution here is that they need quality training to deal with the particular traits and maladies associated with drug addiction, psychosis, poverty, trauma, depression, etc. In this case they also could have used a soft touch, and actually just taken it out for her which would have quieted her down. I found this incredibly sad, like she wanted her mommy to take it out for her because "she can't stand the pain". And the cops just don't have the training or holistic sensibility or compassion practice to go above and beyond protocol.
And here is a comment left by “PostSurgeOperative” on our YouTube channel:
[S]he admits having used PCP earlier in the day. Based on that alone, they should realise [sic] that she will have difficulty understanding what's being said to her and that her behavior could be wildly erratic. They should have brought her to a mental health facility for treatment and observation.
Also, stating that "bad things will happen" if she fails to comply is a very menacing thing to say to someone who's already distraught and agitated, and it probably doesn't help to de-escalate situations like this.