Austin, Texas, is supposed to be weird. It is not supposed to be a police state. But take a look at this video, taken downtown near the University of Texas campus and posted Thursday.
In the video, a pair of police officers can be seen standing over a woman who is sitting on the sidewalk. She speaks to the videographer across the street, telling him that she hasn’t done anything wrong. The officers cuff her and lead her to their squad car to take her to the police station. At that point, she begins to scream at full volume that she has done nothing wrong.
According to the Daily Caller and local news, the police had camped on a corner and were issuing jaywalking citations. The jogger came along, wearing earbuds listening to music. That’s common around the university, around the city, around the entire world.
Police ordered her to stop, and she did not hear them and continued jogging. Police then chased her and tried to grab her to get her attention, and she reacted as just about anyone would, and tried to brush them off before realizing that they were police officers. A witness, Chris Quintero, saw the incident and said that it was clear that the woman could not hear the police officers when they first approached her, and reacted to being touched from behind.
Jaywalking is a class c misdemeanor, not typically an offense that leads to arrest. Police say the jogger was arrested for failure to identify herself and for a traffic signal violation. The arrest is under investigation.
Municipalities often use traffic violation citations to generate revenue.
Somewhat unrelated, but it was so controversial for Arizona to require green card-holding immigrants to identify themselves whenever law enforcement demand, that the Obama administration sued the state to get rid of that law.