Sadly 2010 is off to a shakey start with the story of this horrific police beating of an young violinist Jordan Miles who just several months ago played for First Lady Michelle Obama… This comes on the heels of recent stats showing that in 2009 close to 70 people were shot and killed by police in Houston/Harris County in Texas. 20-30 were killed in LA County in California.. An Oakland police officer accused of killing two unarmed men and shooting a third who was in a wheel chair had his case dismissed by a judge..An Austin officer who shot a man Nathaniel Sanders while he slept in the back of his car will not be having criminal charges pressed on him, even after it was discovered he turned off his car camera.. Very disturbing and in many of our minds calls for major investigations and overhauls by the Department of Justice..
Police brutality charge by teen disturb mayor
Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said he is “very troubled” by claims that a Homewood high school student was beaten by undercover police.
Jordan Miles, 18, was treated at a hospital twice after an arrest last week by three plainclothes Pittsburgh police officers. Police suspected he had a concealed gun and — after a chase and a struggle with the Creative and Performing Arts High School senior — concluded he was holding a bottle of Mountain Dew instead. He was charged with aggravated assault and resisting arrest, but when officers did not show for a court hearing Thursday, the matter was postponed.
Mr. Miles took several blows to the head and face, was Tasered and had a chunk of hair ripped from his head, his lawyer said. He was walking between homes owned by his mother and grandmother when police stopped him.
Police claimed that they identified themselves to Mr. Miles and repeatedly tried to subdue the 18 year old after he fled.
Mother alleges son brutalized by police
By Jeremy Boren and Adam Brandolph
The mother of a high school senior who performed for first lady Michelle Obama while she was in Pittsburgh in September says her son did not deserve to be “brutally attacked” by police officers outside his home earlier this month.
“Jordan is an excellent kid. He’s very quiet and takes school seriously,” said his mother, Terez Miles, 38. “He knows nothing about drugs, drug dealing or anything like that. He didn’t deserve this.”
Jordan Miles, 18, a senior at the Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts School, Downtown, alleges that three Pittsburgh police officers beat him during an arrest outside his house on Tioga Street in Homewood about 11 p.m. on Jan. 12.
The city Office of Municipal Investigations is looking into a complaint filed by Miles, whom officers said kicked and elbowed them when they tried to arrest him.
The officers involved in the incident were Richard Ewing, David Sisak and Michael Saldutte, according to court records. Each officer was hired in September 2005 and is paid a base salary of $56,150 a year, the rate for fourth-year officers.
Police Chief Nate Harper said all three officers were reassigned from their plainclothes unit to uniformed duties. Harper said no further action will be taken until the investigation is complete.
Miles’ mother is “angry” and “frustrated” that the officers have not been more seriously reprimanded.
“I feel like they should be fired,” she said. “There’s no way they can justify what they did.”
Mayor Luke Ravenstahl yesterday called the allegations “very troubling.”
“It seems as if there was a tremendous amount of force used,” Ravenstahl said a day after news broke about the incident. “The question now needs to be answered: Was it appropriate use of force?”
Ravenstahl said the complaint is being taken “very seriously.” If the amount of force the police used wasn’t appropriate, “they will be held accountable,” he said.
Through his attorney, J. Kerrington Lewis, Miles said he fought to defend himself from what he thought was an attack because the officers did not identify themselves as police officers and they were not wearing uniforms.
“We’ve lived in Homewood all our lives,” Terez Miles said. “I’ve told him to be wary of people that might want to do him harm, but I never imagined it would be police officers that would attack and brutally beat him up.”
In a criminal complaint, the officers contend they identified themselves and that Saldutte held up a police badge attached to a necklace.
Miles suffered a swollen face, hair ripped from his scalp and a twig jabbed through his gum during the incident, his mother said. Miles has not returned to CAPA, where he is an honors student and plays the viola, his mother said.
Miles played his instrument for the first lady and the spouses of the delegates of the Group of 20 economic summit when they visited CAPA.
Miles was treated at West Penn Hospital in Bloomfield. Sisak was treated at UPMC Mercy, Uptown, for unspecified injuries, according to the complaint. In a report, Ewing said the officers knocked Miles to the ground and struck him with their knees and fists after an attempt to incapacitate him with a Taser failed.
Police first tried to question Miles because he was outside in a poorly lit area at 11 p.m. and appeared to have a weapon in the right pocket of his heavy coat. The item turned out to be a bottle of Mountain Dew. Police said Miles ran away from them, refused to comply with commands and struggled when they tried to handcuff him. Miles was on his way from his mother’s house to his grandmother’s, where he often sleeps, his mother said.
Elizabeth Pittinger, executive director of the Citizen Police Review Board, said the officers should be reprimanded, offering an alternative assignment to the warrant office or desk duty where they wouldn’t have interaction with the public.
“They should just be taken off the street until this is resolved,” she said.
Miles has been accepted to Pennsylvania State University, where he wants to study to be a crime scene investigator, a dream that may be in jeopardy because of the pending criminal charges, his mother said.
“I hope the charges against my son will be dropped. He’s completely innocent,” she said. “I’m just glad they didn’t kill him.”