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Take action to support Tiawanda Moore!

30 Jan

The Taskforce is asking our friends to take action in the case of Tiawanda Moore, a young woman in Chicago who has accused a police officer of sexual harassment, and has herself been charged with recording police officers on her Blackberry.  Here’s what we know.

Tiawanda Moore, whose trial is tentatively scheduled for Feb. 7 in Cook County Criminal Court, is accused of using her Blackberry to record two Internal Affairs investigators who spoke to her inside Police Headquarters while she filed a sexual harassment complaint last August against another police officer.

On January 22, the New Times featured her case as well as that of Chris Drew as they are both facing up to 15 years in prison for taping police officers.
Quoting from the New York Times:

Ms. Moore’s case is more complicated and “disturbing,” said her lawyer, Robert W. Johnson, who is representing her pro bono.

Ms. Moore lived with her boyfriend at the time of the incident and theirs was a stormy relationship, filled with fights and visits by the police, Mr. Johnson said. Last July, the boyfriend called the police and said he wanted Ms. Moore out of his house. But by the time the police arrived, Mr. Johnson said, the couple had calmed down. Still, one of the officers talked to Ms. Moore upstairs while his partner interviewed the boyfriend.

On Aug. 18, Ms. Moore and her boyfriend went to Police Headquarters to file a complaint with Internal Affairs about the officer who had talked to her alone. Ms. Moore said the officer had fondled her and left his personal telephone number, which she handed over to the investigators.

Ms. Moore said the investigators tried to talk her out of filing a complaint, saying the officer had a good record and that they could “guarantee” that he would not bother her again.

“They keep giving her the run-around, basically trying to discourage her from making a report,” Mr. Johnson said. “Finally, she decides to record them on her cellphone to show how they’re not helping her.”

The investigators discovered that she was recording them and she was arrested and charged with two counts of eavesdropping, Mr. Johnson said. But he added that the law contains a crucial exception. If citizens have “reasonable suspicion” that a crime is about to be committed against them, they may obtain evidence by recording it.

“I contend that the Internal Affairs investigators were committing the crime of official misconduct in preventing her from filing a complaint,” Mr. Johnson said. “She’s young. She had no idea what she was getting into when she went in there to make a simple complaint. It’s just a shame when the people watching the cops aren’t up to it.”

Days later, accompanied by Mr. Johnson, Ms. Moore returned to Internal Affairs and was able to file a full complaint. There is a continuing investigation of Ms. Moore’s charges against the officer, a Police Department spokesman said.

Meanwhile, Ms. Moore is in Cook County Jail after another domestic dispute with her boyfriend, Mr. Johnson said.

In a tearful telephone interview from jail, Ms. Moore said that when she went to Internal Affairs she was only trying to make sure no other women suffered at the hands of the officer.

“I’m scared,” she said. “I don’t know what’s going to happen now. I don’t want to be in jail. I want to make my parents happy and proud of me.”

Our Call to Action:
1. Read the entire New York Times article here.
2. Complete our petition at change.org.
3. E-mail us at chitaskforce@gmail.com if you are interested in potentially attending Tiawanda’s trial.  We will let you know once the trail date is confirmed.

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6 Comments

Posted by on January 30, 2011 in Police, Sexual assault, Take Action!, Violence

 

6 responses to “Take action to support Tiawanda Moore!

  1. Teresa Grasham Adrian

    June 9, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    This is crazy! Regular citizens are scared of the police because of the way they handle things. I know that they have the power to harass and destroy lives and not have to be accountable for their actions. I hate cops for that very reason. Just like when the DA gets it’s teeth into something, they never want to give in or admit they’re wrong. This poor woman was victimized by someone that she should be able to trust. Now she is being victimized again by being threatened with 15 years of jail time. They try to control us with fear, but the people they scare are usually not the “bad guys” because they don’t get scared.

     
  2. Mike Luster

    June 9, 2011 at 9:56 pm

    Cop reform is long overdue in the state of Illinois. Officers and States Attorneys who use the power of position to intimidate, harass, incarcerate and ruin lives deserve special cell blocks and
    places in hell.

     
  3. michelle frye

    June 10, 2011 at 11:47 am

    FREE TIAWANDA!! WE CANCELED OUR TRIP TO CHICAGO BECAUSE, AS A WOMAN, I DO NOT FEEL SAFE IN THE COMPANY OF THE SEEMINGLY CORRUPT CHICAGO POLICE DEPT. STAND UP FOR WOMEN, LET TIAWANDA GO AS SHE DID NOTHING MORALLY WRONG! SHE IS A HEROINE FOR HER ACTIONS, IN MY OPINION. I CALLED THE JUSTICE DEPT AND THEY AGREE AND ARE GOING TO GET BACK IN TOUCH, SO LOOK OUT YOU DIRTY OFFICERS, THE FEDS ARE COMING!

     
  4. Nikita Biddle

    June 27, 2011 at 6:49 pm

    They will win their cases. As i will too. All we need is patience. I was convicted of a Class 4 Felony Eavesdrop for recording an on duty police officer. I believe that I will reopen my case and win and I also believe in the victims who are jailed for expressing their private citizen rights.Tiawanda Moore, you go girl, don’t be scared of them. They should be scared of us. I will try to make it to your courtdates.

     
  5. david redmiles

    August 13, 2011 at 8:04 pm

    What do you expect there all police officers. You talk about corruption you should see fl cops. God its all over but as to your story we made a complaint about a cop in PSL fl to IA and went in for are meeting and guess whos desk where and I mean it ( side by side). Nothing was done, then you look at the fbi for help as well, and they are just as bad. Then when you try to protect your self and you get introuble. sad

     
  6. Bob T Guy

    September 1, 2011 at 1:16 am

    Better read this. US Court of Appeals decision last week.

    http://www.ca1.uscourts.gov/pdf.opinions/10-1764P-01A.pdf

    Excerpt: When Glik affirmed that he was recording audio, the officer placed him in handcuffs, arresting him for, inter alia, unlawful audio recording in violation of Massachusetts’s wiretap statute. ……………………
    1. Were Glik’s First Amendment Rights Violated?
    The First Amendment issue here is, as the parties frame it, fairly narrow: is there a constitutionally protected right to videotape police carrying out their duties in public? Basic First
    Amendment principles, along with case law from this and other circuits, answer that question unambiguously in the affirmative.

    In Tiawanda’s case she was recording what was said TO HER. So, it was not an interception of a communication between other parties, but simple documenting of the public behavior of the police who were communicating WITH HER.

    She is gonna win… and she should sue them for millions.

     

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