Lollie, @joshtpm, St. Paul

Among others, Josh at TPM was getting all indignant about this yesterday on the tweeter.

http://blogs.citypages.com/blotter/2014/08/st_paul_police_defend_chris_lollie_arrest_lawyers_question_aggressive_use_of_force.php

You know who uses the skyway a lot? ME! Notice I call my blog Zingy Skyway Lunch.

I diverted briefly off my normal walk this morning from my parking ramp to work. Instead, I walked through the skyway to the First National Bank building. I wanted to see where these skyway chairs that one can trespass on might be.

The skyway here runs through the second floor of the First National Bank building. There’s not a lot of public facing business in this spot of the skyway. There are a couple of what appear to be governmental bureaus, for instance an economic development outlet. Also a receptionist desk, where some rent a cop type receptionists sit. Also, a hair salon and I think one of these cheesy lunch places. I think it’s a D Brian’s, which is nearer to the Endicott skyway outlet.

But ….. there is a row of chairs arranged in café style seating in a broad expanse in front of the elevator doors in the FNB building. It might be that the elevators themselves are a secured entrance to the floors above, and the café seating is there so visitors can wait pleasantly for an escort to guide them up. Note, the FNB building is not the home of FNB, which probably got absorbed by another bank a long time ago. The FNB building is just a big ol’ downtown legacy building, subdivided for commercial office space.

There’s nothing else of note in the skyway there, and particularly, there’s not what appears to an ‘employee’ area that isn’t barred by a locked door in the first place. So I’m left to assume Lollie was waiting for his kids here in the café chairs, this a spot that screams ‘sit here for a moment while you need, as this is a public place’. It’s either lunch seating for the aforementioned D Brian’s, or it’s a place to wait while your escort arrives from the elevator.

Now, I can anticipate there might be a landlord and police explanation that says this isn’t supposed to be seating for patrons of the daycare center. Thus if you’re doing that and you do not leave when asked, you’re ostensibly trespassing. But that’s unmitigated BS policy by the landlord. It’s discriminatory, and so transparent that I feel not much obligation to belabor it now. I do look at it as less racial than it is a class thing, but it’s unacceptable either way. No doubt the guy got asked to leave because he’s young black man that didn’t appear to be a professional type.

In weeks past as we discussed Ferguson I noted that police routinely abuse their power to book ‘offenders’ for disorderly conduct. They did it here, obviously. It’s also a bit alarming to observe how this lady cop plays ‘good cop’ until a big old creep man cop can arrive to muscle and tase this guy. I think you expect more from ladies, rightly or wrongly. But you also hope I guess that the slot they fill on the patrol roster is more than just ceremonial / superficial. If this gal is so willing to abet this system, why can’t she club and tase the guy herself?

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