Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Jack-Booted Thug(s) of the Week...

... is the Republican-controlled (sadly; they should know better) office of the Vermont Attorney General.

They've seen fit to release the details, including video of the stop, of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Peter Shumlin's June ticket for extreme speeding, yet curiously have declined to do the same in the case of a Vermont State Trooper who was cited for the exact same offense, only the cop was nailed going even faster than the politician.  He just had the bad luck of zooming by his boss, the Commissioner of Public Safety, while he was racing around on duty but not responding to an emergency call:

"Yet after Vermont State Trooper Michael Studin was accused of going 133 mph in October 2008, state officials told the Burlington Free Press no dice on releasing any records related to the stop — not the video, not the police report, not the Attorney General’s Office’s investigation of the case."

Trooper Studin ended up getting a $1,036 ticket versus Shumlin's much smaller fine of $152.  Both were considered civil infractions instead of criminal violations, but the AG's office is lamely claiming the scofflaw cop's case was somehow a "criminal investigation", making the details exempt from public records laws.

Sorry, "no dice" yourselves, state officials.  The cases are nearly identical.  This looks suspiciously like a simultaneous dirty tricks campaign as well as an official cover up of a police officer's arrogant ignoring of the very laws he's sworn to uphold.  If nothing else it just looks bad.

Release all the details of every case on request, or release nothing.  You can't have it both ways.

No comments: