Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Zzzz, Another Snoozer from 24thstate

Jim Durbin of the 24thstate blog tries his hand at video analysis again. And he fails, again.

Durbin's video of the arrest of Javonne Spitz and Brian Matthews helped get the prosecutor to drop charges against Matthews. However, Durbin is still sticking to his story that the video proves that the police report is true and that Matthews is a "liar." You can watch the video here:

Now, the following is what is stated in the police report:
As Captain Monteleone was assisting us with crowd control a subject, later identified as Brian Matthews, walked up to him and purposely fell onto the sidewalk in front of him. While laying on the ground Matthews asked people around him of he saw the police push him down. Captain Monteleone observed Matthews laying on the ground yelling that he was being beaten by the police, trying to draw attention to himself.
As can be seen from the video, this story is clearly false. Matthews did not "walk up to Captain Monteleone." He was walking in front of the police officer, leading Spitz away from the scene.

There is no video evidence whatsoever that Matthews was yelling that he was being beaten, despite the fact that the cameras were picking up sound from Spitz. Brian Matthews' point is that if this part of the police report is false, why should we treat the rest of the report as gospel? The police report was clearly flawed.

Durbin further claims that Matthews was "lying" when he was quoted as follows in the Post-Dispatch:
"I can't tell you how many police officers charged us from behind," Matthews said. "I was pushed to the ground by one. I was pushed into the back of somebody who was walking away."
However, Durbin, so blinded by ideology that he's incapable of even considering the evidence, apparently doesn't even bother to watch the full video. You can see in the video that after Matthews is on the ground the first time, he's trying to get up, and the video (1:15) does seem to indicate that he was pushed back to the ground:

Furthermore, you can see at the 1:16 mark that Matthews was pushed into the back of somebody: in fact, Matthews being pushed caused Spitz and the other officer to fall over. So Matthews' statement in the Post-Dispatch was true.

It looks like Durbin is trying to regain right-wing credibility because he was so embarrassed that his video actually helped prove the innocence of his sworn enemy. It didn't work.

But even if Durbin can't win back his right-wing cred, I still appreciate him. I appreciate the fact that's he's working hard to discredit himself right in time for the trial.


  1. I don't like the tea party, but I don't think that video shows much of anything except maybe the police officers losing their patience with that woman.

  2. Oh sorry, maybe I should have set it up more. Brian Matthews is the guy in a ponytail leading the woman away from the scene (or at least trying to). The video does pretty clearly show that he didn't "walk up in front" of a police officer assisting with crowd control and then fall down.

  3. Yes, but you only see him fall down. It's impossible to tell if he was pushed, tripped, or fell intentionally. I will say it does dismiss the claims that he walked up out of nowhere, fell down, and started screaming "police brutality".

  4. Best. Blog. Ever.