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A firestorm erupted last March when a video surfaced that showed a Texas police officer pepper spraying a group of motorcyclists riding past his patrol car. Motorcyclists who watched the video (now with more than three million views) were angered at the apparent assault on riders. The cop, William Figueroa, claimed he needed to spray the riders because they wouldn’t vacate the lane next to his patrol car that was pulled over at the side of the road.

Surely the overly aggressive cop would be severely reprimanded for his actions that could’ve hurt or even killed riders as they rode past, right? Well, thanks to our favorite moto-riding attorney, John Butrus, we were able to dig into the situation. Sadly, the outcome of the investigation seems to be far too lenient for an officer who demonstrated a complete lack of concern for the safety of our fellow riders.
Read more about the Pepper-Spraying Texas Cop Update at Motorcycle.com.
 

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I don't approve of what the LEO did......but the motorcyclists (and vehicles behind them) were breaking the law by not moving over in the other lane (if possible) and reducing their speed.
No excuse for the pepper spray.....but I can understand the officer's "frustration" maybe.....when fellow officers are hit by oncoming vehicles while making a traffic stop or helping out a motorists in need.
 

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It is a good thing no one was sprayed hard enough to cause an accident. That would really have made this an even bigger mess.

Surely this is out of policy although the city will never admit fault.
 

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Entitled cop. Given the amount of traffic on this road, why didn't he wait to pull over in a safer place. When does it become ok to endanger dozens of other people to make a cop feel safer? When he feels like using his pepper spray standing next to his car with the door open. Does he do this to cars when they don't move to the left lane?
 

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I believe that in Ontario the cop has to bee on the side of the road for a good reason. Simply stopped, at his own discretion, isn't justification for expecting traffic to change lanes.
He is a F...ing Idiot and has no right to assault oncoming traffic, thus endangering them and likely to cause an accident.
 
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I wonder if he sprayed the cars too?:surprise:
No. He knows it would have no effect. But when traffic is this heavy I bet he doesn't chaise down every car that doesn't move to the left lane to give them a ticket or chew them out. So if he isn't chasing down cars, what gives him the right to single out motorcycles? Like most people out there, your vulnerable on a bike and they are going to take advantage of that. Just like this cop.
 

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No. He knows it would have no effect. But when traffic is this heavy I bet he doesn't chaise down every car that doesn't move to the left lane to give them a ticket or chew them out. So if he isn't chasing down cars, what gives him the right to single out motorcycles? Like most people out there, your vulnerable on a bike and they are going to take advantage of that. Just like this cop.
I've had folks look in the rear view and flick a cig out.
My "payback" is to get in front, turn head sideways, close one nostril and do a "farmer blow". Hopefully some greenies smear their window. Childish - I know.
 
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"in a sarcastic voice":

perhaps one should give praise to the officer for showing great restraint in not using deadly force to ensure the motorcyclist comply to the regulations/ his instructions. He should probably receive an award for bravery shown , given the motorcyclist rode so fast so close to him that he would have genuine fear for his life. He had every right to defend himself with deadly force until the offending motorcyclist is disabled. But he chose not to do so out of his respect for another human life. He really is one of the finest police officer the USA has.


__________

When you consider that a judge might accept the above as fact, you understand it is not funny after all. As an outsider, I think this represents what is wrong with policing today in the US.
 

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I've had folks look in the rear view and flick a cig out.
My "payback" is to get in front, turn head sideways, close one nostril and do a "farmer blow". Hopefully some greenies smear their window. Childish - I know.
Guess you don't have a full face helmet.:var_38: Don't ask me how I know.:crying2:
 

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Guess you don't have a full face helmet.:var_38: Don't ask me how I know.:crying2:
In fact I do - but I do ride with it cracked a tad and those damn things make quite a shower of "sparks" when they hit.
 

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You must be very accurate with your "snot rockets" to get them out of the full face like that. Such skill I do not have.:laugh2:

Coops.
 

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If theres no room to move over then they are not breaking the law is what i gather from the earlier statement. So its a judgement call whats safe prudent and legal. "Ouch my eyes I cant see" he could have been run down in self defense.
 

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Definitely not the best response choice by the panicking officer. At least his revolver is still holstered and the nail belt is safely tucked away in the trunk.

In Texas:

"State law requires drivers approaching a stationary authorized emergency vehicle, including a tow truck and TX DMV vehicles and workers, using approved visual signals, and traveling in the same direction, to reduce speed (not to exceed 20 mph less than a posted speed limit of 25 mph or more, or not more than five mpg when the posted speed limit under 25 mph) and vacate the lane closest to the emergency vehicles."

From the photo, which is just a slice of time and action, it appears the group was riding in two lanes with very little room for those in the lane closest to the police vehicle to move to the other lane. But since there's no video its all speculation.

Bottom line for motorcyclists, "Move Over", and for cops who'd rather use inappropriate choices, try using your arm and finger to move the riders over and if they don't comply then wave them over to the shoulder and cite them for a traffic violation.
 

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I almost never weigh in on these law enforcement related posts, but this one really got to me.

By no objective standard is pepper spraying a group of passing motorcyclists for an alleged traffic violation an appropriate response by a police officer. The potential disaster that he could have created by deploying pepper spray like that far outweighs any issues about his safety from traffic during a traffic stop. If a reasonable police officer was in that situation (and he felt his safety was severely compromised by making a traffic stop at that location), he would have told the driver to move their vehicle to a safer location, either further off the road or to the nearest exit, or parking lot, or whatever location provided him with the safety he felt was lacking at that location. If he felt it was too unsafe to even exit the vehicle, then he should have gotten on the public address system that all patrol cars have and given the driver instructions to move their car. Pepper spraying a motorcyclist while they're moving could very easily reach the standard of deadly force, and the conduct of the bikers in this case didn't come anywhere near to meeting that standard. If his judgement that his actions were the proper way to increase his safety, then he is dangerously incompetent, since he risked creating a multiple motorcycle pileup only feet from where he was standing. Just look how many bikes are approaching him from his rear; where are they all going to go once the ones he pepper sprayed start crashing in front of them? I think more than a few of them might end up in the officer's lap.

The officer's conduct has been characterized as a panicked response; I would disagree. What I see, and what I know from experience, is that what you're seeing is an angry response. He was angry when he got out of his vehicle (for whatever reason), and he executed his version of punishment for the crime of "contempt of cop". Those riders weren't moving over, and rather than take competent actions to increase his own safety and the safety of the guy he stopped, he decided in a fit of anger to exact his own street punishment for their perceived disregard for his presence and authority. This "contempt of cop" philosophy lies at the heart of a lot of accusations of excessive force against police.

Police departments live in fear of ever admitting any wrongdoing or incompetence on the part of their officers, because they feel that any acknowledgement of incompetence is an admission that incompetence exists in their department.
 
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