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Five teenagers arrested and searched by Nantucket police have filed a federal lawsuit alleging their civil rights were violated.
The teenagers claim police used too much force and illegally searched them, among other charges. They want a jury trial and are seeking damages.
The plaintiffs say Nantucket police officers forced them to the ground and searched them after an argument last August. According to the complaint, one officer said he wasn’t afraid of the black teens because they were "from the ’hood."

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I know a kid who works as a summer special on Nantucket, he says a lot of the local rich kids a big pot heads and they deal with it regularly down there. I can only assume that this is what the search is in relation too.
 

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I know a kid who works as a summer special on Nantucket, he says a lot of the local rich kids a big pot heads and they deal with it regularly down there. I can only assume that this is what the search is in relation too.
+1, alos, everyone of them is a "sidewalk Lawyer"
 

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http://www.capecodonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080720/NEWS/807200334

Nantucket police response faulted

By Aaron Gouveia
[email protected]
July 20, 2008 6:00 AM
NANTUCKET - Adeane Watty is still haunted by memories of the Nantucket police arresting him last summer.

Watty, 18, was one of the eight people involved in an altercation with a seasonal officer who had asked the group of black youths to move from their location on the sidewalk.

Watty and his friends defended their right to be in a public place and a heated argument ensued. That's when Watty said he was eventually attacked by a half-dozen officers who smashed his face into the pavement, stepped on the back of his neck and reinjured his surgically repaired knee.

"I was just trying to figure out what was going on," Watty said. "They just attacked me."

This week, the police department released a 300-page report detailing its internal investigation of the Aug. 8 incident.

The report lists 16 findings, including one that states the "takedown" of one of the teenagers "was not appropriate and was excessive," as well as seven recommendations regarding future police department protocols and policies.

The report also states that none of the officers "exceeded their lawful authority during this police response" and "the officers also acted permissibly with the bounds of Nantucket Police Department regulations."
Boston attorney Steve Rhones, who represents the teenagers involved, said its likely a lawsuit will be filed against the town seeking damages for the individuals involved.

"There's a very good chance a suit will be filed because excessive force was used on these young black kids and there were injuries," Rhones said. "Their constitutional rights have been violated, and it's been conceded. We'll sue for damages, and the bottom line is how much money they're going to agree to compensate these youngsters."

The report describes the verbal altercation between seasonal officer, Taylor Noll, 26, and one of the teenagers in front of the former Pronto restaurant, which escalated into a confused and disorganized police response to the Broad Street area by as many as 16 full-time and summer officers who initially detained three young men not involved in the original altercation.

The incident ended with the arrest of Nicholas Phillips, 18, who was the one among the group of teenagers that initially argued with Noll, as well as Watty, who allegedly pushed or struck an officer as he protested the way his cousin was being treated by police while he was being detained.
Phillips was subsequently charged with assault and disorderly conduct, while Watty was charged with assault and battery on a police officer, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. The charges were dropped and the matter dismissed in October 2007 by assistant district attorney Tom Shack.

In what the report calls a "cryptic" radio message from Noll, the police dispatcher and others reported hearing "Broad Street now!"
"None of the officers checked with the dispatcher or verified the nature of the radio call," the report states. "There were at least 16 full-time and summer officers all heading to Broad Street with no real idea of what they were responding to."

After Noll called for backup, the teens fled the scene on their bikes, and they encountered a police cruiser on Oak Street next to the Dreamland Theater. It was there that three of the individuals in the group, Terrence Johnson, 13; David Loveberry, 17, and Troy Sullivan, 16, were all told to stop and "get on the ground" by officers, and were subsequently forced to the ground by several responding officers.

One of those officers, Brian Ketchem, took Johnson to the ground, a move which ended with the teenager suffering a separated shoulder.

Johnson's mother Sharon Liburd said she is not satisfied with the police department's internal report, and is engaged in a civil lawsuit against the department.

"That (the report) is damage control and these changes being implemented will not fix anything," Liburd said. "This has taken an emotional and mental toll on these kids and I still can't believe it happened."

The report also addresses the allegation that Noll used racially-charged remarks toward the group of teenagers during the initial verbal altercation. The report does state that Noll admitted to using profanity during the verbal altercation.

Material from the Nantucket Inquirer Mirror was used in this story

REPORT FINDINGS

The final recommendations for the police department contained within the report include:

All officers should receive diversity training.

Summer special officer training should be enhanced to include situational scenarios and methods to de-escalate volatile encounters.

All officers assigned to desk duty should receive training on how to effectively manage resources in responding to incidents.

All officers should receive training on the proper collection of witness information, statements, and use of proper field interview procedures.

The assignment of a patrol officer as officer in charge should be reviewed and curtailed. Meanwhile, those patrol officers who are assigned should be thoroughly familiar with their responsibilities as officer in charge.

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If I heard a "cryptic" radio transmission of "Broad St now" I know for a fact I wouldn't stop to ask dispatch oh whats going on?? Does he really need me there? Can someone else help instead of me? Cleary 16 officers in Nantucket have the same mind set as me.
 

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I am willing to bet that the seasonal officer will be a scape goat for the town on this one. Its unfortunate. A settlement is likely, as it will cost far more to fight the charges. This will be a long process, I'm sure.
 

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While any lawsuit should be taken seriously, I'd take comfort in the knowlege that the attorney for the plaintiffs is Steven "Scumbag" Hrones, a notorious cop suer and shakedown artist from way back. I'm proud to say I was on the receiving end of a $500,000 legal action from this clown. I'm prouder to say the Commonwealth was victorious at trial and Hrones was out thousands of bucks for expert testimony and salaries for his rockhead staff. As mentioned in the "Herald" last week, this screwball has an embarrassment of a practice. Anyone who saw him on television discussing his client "Clark Rockefeller", or whatever-the-hell-his-name-is, can only conclude Mushmouth Hrones got his law degree through the mail... This guy is a Class "A" moron and about as bright as a 5 watt bulb.
 
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