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Sunday, March 15, 2009

Outrage in Ohio-----Could this happen to you?????



Hope Steffey on the floor of the PD being strip searched.

I don't know if you all have noticed. But ever since 9/11 we have moved to the point of the state having more and more control of our lives, especially in the area of the police. I know that as AA's many of us have an innate distrust of the police anyway. But I never felt that way. As you all know, I was raised all over the US, and as a result, it enabled me to see things from many perspectives. I know this is not a political blog, however, socialism is an integral part of our lives, and as such sometimes these things must be discussed.

The reason I feel the following story is relevant (Although it involves a ww) is twofold.

1. I deplore seeing ppl having their rights violated, regardless of their ethnicity. IOWs, I don't want to see ANY woman sexually dehumanized and treated in such a horrific manner, as this video depicts.

And 2. If they can get away with doing this to an attractive, married, middle class, white woman, what the hell do you think they could get away with doing to the average WOC???

The following scenario involves a youngish ww who apparently got into an altercation with a family member. The family member apparently struck her, and she was crying. this resulted in her cousin calling the police. Once the officer reported to the house, she was asked for her Licence. At this point she mistakenly gives the officer her deceased sister's Licence, (by mistake). When she tries to take it back and explain it's the license of her deceased sister (which she keeps as a memento) he becomes enraged, and apparently thinks she's trying to pull some sort of scam. He was heard telling her that he did not give a damn about her dead sister, and refusing to give it back. Anyway, things progress from bad to worse with the officer deciding to take her in, and book her, (apparently for providing false information, and disorderly conduct.) She was put in the back of a police cruiser, and taken to the booking station. Once there she was asked a series of questions, such as do you have any sharp objects, do you have any drugs, have you ever contemplated suicide etc. When they got to the suicide question, she hesitated, and asked "now or ever?" At this point the interview stops and she is immediately seized by 7 officers. They threw her to a cell floor and began to bodily rip her clothing from her body. (She was handcuffed at the time) She can be heard screaming and crying as she is forcibly stripped of all her clothing in front of all the officers, (as well as anyone else in the vicinity. My description really does not do this horrific scene justice so I am including the video links: http://www.wkyc.com/news/news_article.aspx?storyid=82447

http://narcosphere.narconews.com/notebook/nora-callahan/2009/02/hope-america-and-hope-steffey
Be sure to see it before they remove it because she is now suing the entire police department. And I for one hopes she gets millions! I think it's horrible how she was treated. Watching it was akin to watching a person being tortured. She's on the floor, butt naked, and crying piteously while these men and women are forcibly stripping her of every shred of her dignity. As a woman, it's extremely hard to watch, and I felt like crying with her. Hurry and see the video before it's removed. She described the ordeal to her husband as being raped without being penetrated. I think that's sums it up perfectly, because watching it reminds you of an unfinished rape. She also claims she was beaten off camera, thrown face down (which resulted in a cracked tooth, and bulging disk, and we left naked, shivering, and crying, without medical care on a cold cement floor for over 6 hours. Like I said I hope she gets every penny she is suing for. I realize the police have a hard job, and I am trying to be objective. But I saw the tapes, and I feel that even if she was guilty of disorderly conduct -as they claim- there is NO excuse for 7 ppl to jump on a 125lb woman, take her down so roughly her tooth is cracked, and a disk is bulged, and then strip off her clothing like she's a hardened criminal! Nevermind the fact that men are NOT SUPPOSED to ever be in the room when a female is being strip searched under ANY circumstances! I'm horrified by how this woman was treated!! Read the account and watch the video, then tell me what you think ......
Currently Steffie (the victim) is suing and I wish her all the luck with her lawsuit. I am not one of those ppl who hate the police. But what I hate with a passion is injustice, and as far as I'm concerned. That's exactly what this was....
Below is the news account of the incident.... By the way ladies, if you are ever arrested, regardless of how minor the charge is. If they ask you if you have ever contemplated suicide, regardless of whether you've ever thought about it, tell them NO!

CANTON -- Hope Steffey's night began with a call to police for help. It ended with her face down, completely naked and sobbing on a jail cell floor.
Steffey says Stark County sheriff's deputies used excessive force and assaulted her during a strip search 15 months ago, according to a federal lawsuit.
Stark County Sheriff Timothy Swanson denies the allegation.
Steffey's attorney says her clothes, including her underwear and bra, were stripped from her body by at least seven male and female sheriff's deputies and jail workers. She lay face down in handcuffs at the time.
"Hope begged and pleaded with her ... assailants to stop," the lawsuit says. "There was no forcible penetration but Hope felt as if she was being raped."
The sheriff denies this was a strip search.
The sheriff's policy requires officers conducting any strip search to be of the same sex.
Her attorney, David Malik, said Steffey, 41, was never asked to voluntarily remove her clothes. In an e-mail, Swanson said Steffey was asked to remove her clothes but refused. He said deputies took them off for her own safety.
Swanson declined to comment further, saying the details would come out in court.
Channel 3 News obtained exclusive video of Steffey's night in the Stark County jail cell. You can click the link at the bottom of the page to view it. A warning: it is difficult to watch.
Steffey declined to be interviewed for this story. But her husband, a high school educator, talked to Channel 3's Tom Meyer.
Greg Steffey said his wife is still traumatized. But the couple wants the story told to prevent it from happening to someone else.
"This could be your wife or anyone's wife," Greg Steffey said.
He said he still can't believe this happened to Hope, a 125-pound woman who, earlier that night, turned to police for help.
"You don't treat people like this," Greg Steffey said. "I don't think murderers are treated like this much less people charged with disorderly conduct."
Steffey's ordeal with the Stark County Sheriff's deputies began after her cousin called police for help.
In a 9-1-1 call, her cousin said Steffey had been assaulted by another cousin.
When a Stark County deputy arrived, he asked for Steffey's driver's license. She accidentally turned over her dead sister's license, which she said she keeps in her wallet as a memento, the lawsuit says.
The deputy refused to give the license back and told Steffey to "shut up about your dead sister," according to her attorney.
The sheriff denied that in a written response to the lawsuit.
Eventually, Steffey was arrested and taken to the Stark County Jail. She was later charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.
After her clothes were removed, she was locked in a cell. To stay warm, she wrapped herself in toilet paper. She remained in the cell for six hours.
During that time, she was not allowed to use a phone or seek medical attention for injuries she suffered that night, including a cracked tooth, bulging disc and bruises, the lawsuit says.
The sheriff denies that.© 2009 WKYC-TV

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sorry Sara but I just don't see why we should give a damn what happens to some white woman! Do you think for a minute she would give a damn what happened to us? It's stupid to worry about ww. They are the most privaledge women in the world. And they always get their way. I'm sure her trailer park self will get paid, let's consentrate on our own problems. Besides she was not raped...

Taylor-Sara said...

Hi Anon.
I understand how you feel. I really do, but this is about a woman being violated, and I feel that it crosses the color line. Like I said, I don't want to see ANY woman treated in such a horrific way be she white, black or anything else. Do you want to see someone treated like this just because she's not black???

Sandz said...

This is sad.

I am floored.

Velvet Queen said...

OMG!!!!

First of all I think we Americans have A RIGHT to question our police departments, and yes I don't think very highly of the general police system ... not because of racial issues though but because I see the way many officers act when their OFF duty..and when they're on.

There is no honor or dignity in wearing the Police badge anymore...its become an excuse to get away with things, and act any way you want. This is why I have little respect for the general police system. Now, I'm not saying that I just don't like officers...I'm sure there are very good ones out there..but sadly they seem to be outnumbered.

What they did to this woman ANGERS ME. I hate it!!!! I hope she gets every penny too Sara. She deserves every single cent!!!!!!!!

And those cops should have jail time!!!!

Where's the honor anymore?!?!??!?!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

This makes me scared to death. I just hope and pray I never see an officer bc I am sure I will end up dead.

sky said...

that is just disgusting! i hope besides winning that she seeks counseling, that is too tramatic!



*i want add as a side (not reguarding the topic) that any single ladies here should watch the new show on vh1 called "Tough Love". you can watch the first episode on vh1, it'll open your eyes and possibly help you find the love you want (surprisingly from vh1 i know). goes on every sun. @ 10pm est. i saw myself in a lot of the women*

cool_splash1 said...

Yes, but notice that the person talking doesn't have id. I mean seriously you don't care what happens to this women because she is white. I don't care how much privilage white women have over bw etc. that is just wrong.

shocol said...

What is the matter with those people? Unbelievable!

One thing, I guarantee that they will try to present her as a mentally disturbed/danger to herself in court. She was too honest when they asked her if she had ever thought about harming herself.

Anonymous said...

WoW I'm stunned and angered at what happened to this woman who cares if she was white. No one should go through something like that. I hope she gets every penny she can get.


Ps: I say Tough Love to on Sunday and it was real good. It's about time vh1 has a show that makes seance lol ; )

MrsRony said...

almost 2 yrs later and nothing is being done about this case. According to a grand jury, Stark County deputies committed no criminal acts while arresting Hope Steffey two years ago. She is still suing. This really is becoming a 3rd world country.

Anonymous said...

Harry Potter would dig that video clip.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Taylor-Sara said...

Anon. do me favor, and take your ignorant ass eleswhere. Your comment was too ridiculous to answer, thats why it was deleted.

the reader said...

it makes me sad that someone would condone that type of mistreatment, simply because the victim was a white woman. and here's where you probably think, "Well as a black woman she wouldn't care for me," and that officially makes you an a$s. how can you complain about white ppl continuously painting black ppl with a broad brush and yet here you are doing the same? she is a WOMAN, and that could be you or me in that same position. but of course, you're not going to care because she was white.

Sara, i appreciate some of what you do here in showing positive images of black women, because that's what a lot of us need, but i really wish that you didn't include the hateration of white women. it unfortunately leads to ugly comments like the first one left on here and ppl thinking it's ok to do that.

Aphrodite said...

I saw this and I thought that male officers were never supposed to be around females when they were being searched/strip searched. This is beyond nasty/evil.


As an aside the BM DV issues is um ridiculous. Be Be Winans has been arrested on assualt charges.

Taylor-Sara said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Taylor-Sara said...

Anon. where exactly have you seen me express hateration of ww??? I wish you would get your facts straight! I rarely mention ww! But what I have made abundantly clear is that I have 4 white aunts 3 of whom I love very dearly. The forth I can only tolerate, but thats another story. I'm tired of ppl making assumptions without bothering to look at the facts. Making a critical remark does NOT equal hate! I do not Hate WW! And If I did (duh) a story like this would have NEVER appeared here!! Stop believing some ridiculous rumor that some fool has spread, and use your OWN mind!

Terri said...

And even if you did trash ww Sara, (which I know you don't) How would that make you responsible for an ignorant remark another ADULT made? Is she some mindless zombie who has to follow the lead of someone else- or is she a thinking human being responsible for her own actions? How could anyone but this woman be responsible for HER OWN WORDS? Some people are just so stupid you almost have to feel sorry for them....

Aphrodite said...

This post actually reminds me of American Violet. The film that is based on a true story about a BW who pretty much had her civil rights and every other right violated by law enforcement via a drug allegation.


Sara, the anons sound like they are using the internet Ike Turner tactics to distract your blog. Muslim Bushido has a really good post on this detailing the methods these creeps use against BW empowerment bloggers. I had no idea that there sooo many tactics. It is worth checking out.


And Sara, I also want to thank you for your contribution to BW empowerment. I appreciate you, your blog, and all the hard work you do - bc I know that a blog must be work and I am sure you get a lot of heat from psychos, BM, racists, weirdos etc.. So I want to give you a heartfelt thanks and a hug for providing a safe space for all BW to heal and move forward.

Taylor-Sara said...

Thanks girl. It's very much appreciated...

ZooPath said...

I don't care if she is white, that was a horrible thing to happen to anyone. We can't get so bitter that we lose our basic human empathy for someone else suffering. If they are willing to do this to a reasonably attractive woman then a woman of color probably would have been stripped and beaten in the same situation. I can't believe the other women officers helping this violation proceed

Terri said...

yeah that's the part that shocked me too. The other women helped! And how can the sheriff claim they did nothing wrong when even Sheriff's from other counties are disputing him, and once again, Men are NOT supposed to be in the room when a female is being stripped! The sheriff knows this, so how can he lie and say they did nothing wrong?

the reader said...

sara, when i say "hateration" i don't mean "hatred"; i know you don't hate white women. and yes, you don't mention ww often, but when you do, it can (sometimes) have a very virulent tone to it, that's just my opinion. i'm allowed to have an opinion on your blog, yes? i've already stated my appreciation for what you do here, and i think all is going to be well if i simply disagree with the way you write at times, it's discourse. i guess i should have been clearer about who i was addressing at first - the first anon commentator.

@terri - go back and read my comment. i was addressing the ridiculousness of the first anon comment, and in no way did i say that sara is directly responsible for the derangement of others; YOU in fact seem stupid for trying to call me out. thanks.

Cath said...

Sara please delete the trolls! I'm begging you! If they are not contributing anything useful to the discussion, then they are simply here to derail it. Just hit delete and lets keep it moving. You do not have to justify anything you say to these clowns (It won't matter anyway, since they are incapable of listening) Lets just delete and ignore and watch them writhe in agony. You have never shown hatred for ww, she is just looking for something to argue about. Let her argue with her wall! We have important work to do here, and these BS posts need to be eliminated....

Felicity said...

It is just awful.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the anon who is the opening poster. These White women have their own men and communities constantly fighting for them. We Black women have nobody.

Anonymous said...

Just like too many sistas do not realize that Black men do not care about us, it lookls like there are many sistas who do not realize that White/non-Black women do not care about us either.

Please wake up sistas.

Anonymous said...

BLACK MEN LOVE BLACK WOMEN. STOP HATING YOUR GREAT BLACK MEN. STOP SOWING THE SEED OF HATRED AMONG BLACK PEOPLE. YOUR OPTIONS ARE A LIE AND A COVER FOR GREAT DECEPTION AND DIVISION.

Anonymous said...

Dont give a damn about no white woman. Same way we dont give a damn about no black man. Black woman is her own race and we only want a white man to make grey babies. Am I going mental or what?