Cops or Criminals With a Badge Again!

84 Year Old Veteran

Thugs Called Police

One minute, 84-year-old Daniel Daley Jr. was arguing with an Orlando police officer about his car being towed.

The next, he was on the ground in handcuffs with a broken neck.

That much is not in dispute. But versions of the story diverge from there.

Ultimately, the Orange-Osceola State Attorney's Office will decide whether Daley should be charged with assault and battery on a law-enforcement officer and disorderly conduct -- as police recommend. Advocates for Daley think the officer is the one who may have violated the law.

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The incident has divided the neighborhood along North Orange Avenue near Lake Ivanhoe, with its mix of restaurants, bars, antique stores and other shops.

Police and one witness say Daley was belligerent and threatened Officer Travis Lamont, 26. Lawyers representing Daley say Lamont overreacted, endangering the life of a sweet old widower and veteran of World War II and Vietnam.

In a report released Monday, Lamont said Daley had been drinking, kept slapping the officer on the shoulder and was warned to cut it out. But Daley persisted, grabbed the officer's neck and "cocked his right hand back as if to throw a punch," Lamont wrote.

"I'm not going anywhere till I knock out this cop," Lamont quoted Daley as saying in the report.

"I immediately feared a physical attack was imminent so I grabbed Daley Jr.'s left wrist with my left hand while placing my right hand on his left elbow," Lamont wrote. "I then pivoted on the ball of my left foot while dropping my right knee toward the ground. I then directed Daley Jr. to the ground with an arm bar technique."

Eyewitness Sean Hill, a patron of The Caboose bar, where Daley had been drinking before the confrontation, described the takedown as more of a hip check and a flip that drove Daley into the pavement headfirst. Furthermore, Lamont never told Daley to stop touching him, nor was the older man was aggressive or a threat, Hill said.

Hill said Daley tapped the officer's shoulders a few times but suddenly stumbled forward and reached for the officer's shoulders to catch his balance.

"The police officer never asked him to stop with the hands," said Hill, who often plays the Golden Tee video-golf game with Daley at the bar.

"I heard Dan's head hit the ground first, then his body," he added.

Orlando attorney Mark NeJame is representing Daley and spent the day interviewing witnesses. So far, he said, it appears to him that Lamont overreacted.

"If a law officer violated the law, then he should be held to the same standard as everyone else," NeJame said.

The lawyer said Daley has never had legal trouble. But Lamont has been investigated three times by the police internal-affairs division.

Lamont, who joined the department in December 2008, damaged his patrol car twice and was reprimanded, records show. In April, he wrongly arrested a man on a simple battery charge and had to ask a judge to release the man from jail. He received a written reprimand.

That doesn't mean he was wrong in Daley's case, authorities said.

"Things can happen when you're trying to take custody of somebody," said Sgt. Barbara Jones, a police spokeswoman. "Officers can get hurt. He has a right to defend himself." (Here we go again, trying to justify the cops' actions. The guy is 84 years old for God's sake, even if he was unruly is this treatment justified? If Travis Lamont, (26) wants to be a bad ass let's send him somewhere where he can be one).

Comments 10 comments

G-Ma Johnson profile image

G-Ma Johnson 6 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

It happens way to often...older people on the most part, can easily be thrown off balance and grab for fear of falling, whatever is closest to them...For heaven's sake this 26 year old could use a little caring in his job, seems a cockie young man? to me...with his record it seems they have given him permission to be a jerk....they have done little to make him realize what and whom he represents...I pray for then both, Daniel and Lamont...:O) Hugs G-Ma


justom profile image

justom 6 years ago from 41042 Author

G-Ma, it does happen too often and not just to old folks. They have to be held accountable to those they are to protect and SERVE. Thanks for being a caring human being and praying for them both, they need it!! Peace!! Tom


vrbmft profile image

vrbmft 6 years ago from Yucaipa, California

Well, we are in good hands here with police watch! All of these matters are so complicated or perhaps not at all!! There's got to be something in the training, however, unfortuantely once the ol' fight flight reflex goes, all bets are off!! But, yes, an 84 old man who is drunk and stumbling. certainly brings up a lot of issues, like just back away and call for help. don't even get close enuf for him to put his hands on you.

A Few years back, we had two shooting in this area in the span of one week, where loads of shots were fired by the police. I mean loads of shots. Two people killed. One seemed totally innocent, a drunk retired dentist. The other a man held up in a house. the police were there and had been there before for domestic violence. But the house was riddled with bullets. So I wrote a letter to the editor and it was interesting all the feedback from both sides of the opinion page!! Your pictures help a lot. Put perspective. I believe in England the police dont even carry guns, but that may have changed, I don't know. We have so much to learn as a society. Sometimes I feel sorry for the cops because they don't have the training to do anything but what they do. The same with the military. But those of us who are citizens and those at the top of ladder in law enforcement and the military have tons of opportunities to rethink and retrain from the top down. It will take a lot of us envisioning that to happen, but I think it can happen if we all put our minds to it. Envisioning is a powerful tool that as a society we don't use enuf and probably most people don't even know there is such a thing or if they do, don't believe in it. It sounds like hoccus pocus. Anywho, thanks for the informative hub.

Vern


justom profile image

justom 6 years ago from 41042 Author

I always welcome your insightful comments Vern. It is complicated but I'm not sure I feel sorry for cops especially when it's only as hard as using a bit of common sense (or as someone told me years ago uncommon sense, if it was common more people would have it). A lot of folks will look at the fact the old dude (I can say that 'cause he's older than me) was drinking and acting up a bit and think he got what he had coming. That's never been my thought pattern and never will be. I thank God for folks like you man. Peace!! Tom


vrbmft profile image

vrbmft 6 years ago from Yucaipa, California

Part of what I feel sorry about is that this cop joins the force and being a cop does not promote him growing beyond where he is. He is all about being tuf to cover up something and being on the "force" will never allow him to face that part of himself that is scared, perhaps compassionateless, cannot see himself as a precious human being let alone someone 84 years old and drunk. From that perspective it is really sad. Being a cop keeps him stuck and underdeveloped. He will never see human beings as other than scumbags or potential scumbags and he even sees those he loves that way as well. He has to have a few beers before he can lean up against another cop and feel just a tiny tiny tiny bit vulnerable. SAD!

Common sense, I think, is sort of "innate" to how our brain functions and if left alone our brain gives us pretty good information. But unfortunately, from very early on, the big people tell us when we are little that we are not seeing what we see, we are not smelling what we smell, we are not hearing what we hear, so out the door goes our common sense! When you see everyone as potentially out to kill you, common sense is pretty much useless!! So we are back to that training stuff, and as a society we have to come to terms with what it is we want cops to do for us. When we are being attacked, we want them to beat the crap out of, shoot, kill, maim, whatever it takes, but then we also want them to be able to discriminate when that kind of action isn't called for. As long as the mentality is killing is the ultimate and perhaps best form of protection, I think we are in trouble. Even in martial arts, the very first principle is to avoid the fight. Destroy, I think is number last!! I think it is number eight!! Hey, keep posting these wonderfully informative blogs. They open up good discussion and maybe, who knows, something will change because of your blogs.

Vern


Micky Dee profile image

Micky Dee 6 years ago

Like it's said- it happens WAY TOO often. Thank you for the truth! God bless!


onegoodwoman profile image

onegoodwoman 6 years ago from A small southern town

My hubby, a rather 'scruffy' looking sort of man, was pulled over and questioned at length about the brand new Chevy 454, still in the crate, in the bed of his pick-up.

He had all the documentation required, was not speeding, or drinking.....he was just pulled over......when the officer could find nothing wrong, he asked, " how can you afford a brand new engine".......hubby said, " my wife works".

I do support our officers, I do, but there are bad eggs.

May God protect the feeble.


justom profile image

justom 6 years ago from 41042 Author

onegoodwoman, thanks for you input. Your husband went through what all black men go through and have gone through for years. The cops have just expanded their profiling to include all folks they consider suspect. They have way too much control, it's a bit scary. Amen to that last line. Peace!! Tom


fastfreta profile image

fastfreta 6 years ago from Southern California

Again justom, good writing. But the story is almost incredulous. 84, how in the world is an 84 year old man a threat, or even the cause of anything that could get his neck broken, by anything less than an accident, (I'm just saying).


justom profile image

justom 6 years ago from 41042 Author

fastfreta, I hear you. This stuff happens way too much and it has to stop. Seems like they've given up on the real criminals in favor of messin' with folks over nothing. Thanks for checking it out.

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