Read this in the Daily Mirror today: “The man arrested… was injured when he is said to have slipped on a wet stone while being taken to the metal quarry where he is believed to have hidden the weapon.” Well, really? Strange, he just slipped and fell.
This is just the latest example of people being beaten or dying in custody and the media reporting it as “Ooops”.
But it’s not oops. This guy is suspected of a terrible crime, but he’s not convicted. Even once he is, you can’t just assault him. I don’t know if you’ve ever been arrested, but at those times the state is in control of your body. And it’s scary. Cops cannot be allowed to torture, assault and kill people in custody. Someday you may be arrested, and even if not, this sort of policing is impacting somebody’s husband or child or friend.
It’s not fair, and it also introduces garbage information into our legal system. Torture and assault do not produce good intelligence – crap American TV tropes aside. People confess to anything under torture or under threat and it introduces a ton of lies into an investigation. It’s wrong and it defeats the purpose of actually solving crimes.
If you think it’s not real or it’s just bad people this happens to, you’re sorely mistaken. Sunil Perera used to supply balloons to our family parties. He was wrongly arrested over a bomb threat and he was beaten and killed in custody. He was just a family man that sold balloons.
The Sri Lankan media is part of this problem because, for the most part, they report the police’s side of the story without question, even when it makes no sense. The suspect fled from custody, in handcuffs, and jumped in a canal. The suspect went for a gun while showing cops the scene of the crime and was shot.
That’s the classic trick – taking the suspects to the scene of the crime and killing them there. Who even does that? Why would you take a suspect back to a crime scene? If that is happening for whatever reason they should at least have their lawyer with them, or body cameras on the cops.
There should be consequences if people die in custody and there simply aren’t. Sadly, the media is a big part of the problem. The fact that we read these stupid lies on the front page of a newspaper and go along with it should make us all ashamed.