May 24, 2009

Gregory Rold Dies After Police Shoot Him With a Taser

I'm sad to report that we have another taser-related death in America. This is the 20th taser-related death at the hands of police officers since the beginning of the calendar year. Here is the initial report:

Salem man dies after police shoot him with a Taser
Stephen Beaven, The Oregonian

A purported trespasser died Saturday night after he was shot with a Taser as Salem police officers tried to arrest him.

Gregory Rold, 37, died at Salem Hospital shortly before 9:30 p.m., police said today.

Officers were called to an apartment on Royvonne Avenue SE in Salem about 7:38 p.m. following a report of a man who was trespassing. They encountered Rold, who resisted arrest, prompting officers to shoot him with a Taser and beat him with their batons. After he was handcuffed, officers said Rold was unconscious.

Four officers were placed on administrative leave while Rold's death is being investigated.

It is interesting to note that Gregory Rold cannot contradict the 'resisting arrest' or 'trespassing' charges. He's dead. I don't know all aspects of the law ... but, I'm fairly comfortable that we don't have the death penalty in America for those that 'resist arrest or trespass. Four police officers couldn't control this guy with something less than deadly force? The only response that they could come up with was extra-judicial death penalty?

Villagers, we are 20 weeks into the calendar year and we already have 20 taser-related deaths in America. Isn't it time for you to sign our online petition calling for congressional hearings on this taser torture?

What say u?


A.Smith said...

I'm definitely concerned about this. Moreso than before. This is getting ridiculous. Are tasers not supposed to be non-lethal options for police officers.

When white people start being tased to death, I'll reconsider my opinion that this is some real racial bullshit.

J. Slattum said...

When the guy pounds at your door, when you leave, knowing that your fiance is inside alone.... When, at 2am, he does this to several other women.... When he stalks the kids and you have a 3.5 year old.... It's a relief the problem is gone, but it's ridiculous that those pigs couldn't control themselves.

Unknown said...

A. Smith - Judging from the statistics ... we aren't seeing many white people being killed in taser-related incidents. The police seem to find other ways to contain the situation when the perp is white. I'm hoping that the Congressional Black Caucus will take this issue seriously...

J. Slattum - I feel you. I accept that Gregory Rold was a disgusting human being. Does that give the four officers the right to tase him to death?

Gunfighter said...

Tasers aren't deadly force weapons. They are considered to be "less lethal".

Instead of using a Taser, perhaps the officers should have just shot the suspect. Would that have been better?, because that's the next level folks.

Unknown said...

Gunfighter - Four officers. One suspect. Not a murder suspect. Not a kidnapping suspect. Not a child molestor suspect. Rold is suspected of TRESPASSING.

Do u really think that four officers couldn't subdue this one suspect without killing him with 50,000 volts of electricity? Wasn't there some element of the 'use of force continuum' below killing a suspected TRESPASSER?

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Shortround said...

So I grew up in Salem Or. and am now in Portland so this hits home for me. Its now a fews days after the incident and I wonder why I am not hearing more about it. What needs to happen is letters being written and action being taken by all of us local peoples. One answer I can see to this problem of "death by taser" is a mandatory calling of paramedics when any person gets tased so that we have actual professionals on the scene to help prevent wrongful deaths as such.

I hope I/We can rally people to become motivated and that this incident doesnt get swept under the rug. I will do my part here on my local scene so wish me luck and say some prayers for this mans family/friends.


David McDonald said...

Kinda strange... I was just checking out this blog when you commented on mine.

At this point, the only place this story is getting attention is on the web. In Oregon, there is a lot of anger about the police in general, and more secifically,about how they treat black folks.

There's also a law suit settlement
that requires the state to provide services to people with developmental disabilities.

So there's egg on several faces, with potential for big problems around race and disability. I intend to push the envelope as far as possible.

I've contacted the head of the Salem Human Rights Council, asking her to make sure a thorough investigation is done. We'll see...

Unknown said...

Shortround - If there is anything that I can do via my blog or other contacts to get information out from you/your local crew ... just let me know. I hope you've seen that there is a local blogger also trying to raise awareness of this taser-related killing.

Unknown said...

David - First, I encourage all villagers to check out your blog as a source of on-the-ground reporting on this taser-related death.

Second, if there is anything that I can do with my blog to support your efforts ... just let me know.