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Thread: Richmond breaks the law again (Long)

  1. #1
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Richmond breaks the law again (Long)

    The City Council continues their path of ignoring Virginia Law and using the Police Department as their private thugs.

    First, this is part of the Va. Open Meeting statute.

    § 2.2-3707. Meetings to be public; notice of meetings; recordings; minutes.
    H. Any person may photograph, film, record or otherwise reproduce any portion of a meeting required to be open. The public body conducting the meeting may adopt rules governing the placement and use of equipment necessary for broadcasting, photographing, filming or recording a meeting to prevent interference with the proceedings, but shall not prohibit or otherwise prevent any person from photographing, filming, recording, or otherwise reproducing any portion of a meeting required to be open. No public body shall conduct a meeting required to be open in any building or facility where such recording devices are prohibited.

    Now the story

    http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/local/city-of-richmond/in-chaotic-session-activist-removed-park-lease-approved/article_a1a665ff-c0c4-50ff-af30-17f202a602a9.html
    The Richmond City Council voted Monday to lease Monroe Park to a nonprofit group during a chaotic night at City Hall in which a well-known activist was forcibly removed by police and critics of the park plan seemed to briefly take over the meeting.
    The council voted unanimously to lease the city’s oldest public park to the Monroe Park Conservancy to allow a $6 million renovation to move forward with a mix of public and private money.
    But as the meeting began, all eyes turned to the media gallery, where former candidate for sheriff Chris Dorsey was filming the proceedings with a handheld video camera.

    Dorsey, a strident council critic who attends public meetings carrying a handgun, was asked by a council staff member to leave the press area, which set off a confrontation that ended with Dorsey being carried from the building by police.

    “I’m being kidnapped!” Dorsey shouted as police took him down an elevator.

    Dorsey said by phone that the incident began when a city official questioned why he was sitting in an area reserved for the media.

    In a video of the incident recorded by Dorsey and posted to YouTube, Dorsey has a two-minute exchange with Steve Skinner, the council’s public information manager, who asks why he’s seated in the media section. Dorsey repeatedly tells Skinner he is a member of the media who blogs and posts videos to YouTube.

    At one point, Dorsey asks Skinner to step away from him, claiming he’s invading his personal space. When Dorsey aims the camera at Skinner’s hands, Skinner asks, “Are you threatening me with your gun?” He repeats, “You pointed to your gun” twice before having security remove Dorsey.

    Dorsey said he was assaulted by the officers.

    “Four guys picked me up ... and the whole time, I’m telling them, ‘You guys gotta let me go. You guys gotta let me go. I’m going to sue each and every one of you. I’m going to sue you. I’m going to sue the police.’ ” Dorsey said he plans to file claims related to the incident.

    Councilwoman Reva M. Trammell, 8th District, objected to Dorsey’s removal after the shouts from the hallway died down.

    “That should not have taken place,” Trammell said, promising a fuller discussion.

    Trammell later pointed specifically to the issue of firearms and questioned why Dorsey had been approached by staff members rather than a uniformed police officer.

    “This could have been a bad situation,” she said.

    Minutes later, an opponent of the Monroe Park plan refused to stop speaking about the issue during a separate public comment period, prompting Council President Charles R. Samuels to gavel a recess and leave the room. The activists then continued talking about the issue as the council members who remained sat silently.

  2. #2
    Campaign Veteran T Dubya's Avatar
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    I was there, saw it. The discussion didn't look unusual from my vantage point. Really, really odd. Chris Dorsey ran for sheriff, he is always at council meetings. He did nothing wrong. Steve Skinner, the guy that had Dorsey thrown out claimed he pointed to "his gun." That's just stupid, nothing like that happened. Peter is right in his subject line. This man was assaulted, harassed and thrown out for open-carrying. No question in my mind. I saw them drag him out and I saw Reva Trammal immediately go to his defense and say "that should not have happened."


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m_Vy3WjE3E8#t=21
    "These are the shock troops (opencarry.org) of the gun lobby. And, they are not going away."
    Ceasefire NJ Director Brian Miller, NJ.com, August 20, 2009

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    Angry

    I watched the latter part of the meeting on television, didn't get home until after this had gone down and heard no mention of it until the news this morning. I hope he sue's the crap out of every person who participated.

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    Regular Member Repeater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T Dubya View Post
    I was there, saw it. Chris Dorsey ran for sheriff, he is always at council meetings. He did nothing wrong. Steve Skinner, the guy that had Dorsey thrown out claimed he pointed to "his gun."
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m_Vy3WjE3E8#t=21
    So, who is Chris Dorsey? Mark Holmberg investigates.


    Chris Dorsey gets carried away

  5. #5
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    I think I would have added, "I hope you have lots of equity in your houses, gentlemen, I'll see you living in a homeless shelter by the time we're done here."

    Not really. But boy I woulda wanted to.

    TFred

    ETA: Not until violating civil rights comes with PERSONAL consequences, will it ever end.
    Last edited by TFred; 04-15-2014 at 12:17 PM.

  6. #6
    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Why was he carried out? I k ow he was told to leave for bogus reasons by how/why did he get picked up and carried? Did he refuse to just walk out with them?

    Sent from my XT907 using Tapatalk
    "The wicked flee when no man persueth: but the righteous are as bold as a lion" Proverbs 28:1

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    So, there is a "media section". Who decides who is media? Someone does. This guy may not have been designated "media" and hence not allowed in the area.

    Just being a blogger does not make you a "media" for these areas. Usually a person in the agency accepts a request to be designated a member of the media. I think that this is Mr. Skinner (ph: 804-646-6052), public relations dept.

    Usually, "media" for these purposes are defined as brick and mortar establishments (newspaper, TV, etc.) and even some bloggers with well known blogging sites.

    Sounds like he was told to leave the media section; refused, and was carted off. This is what happens.

    Now if there is not a procedure for designating who is and is not "media" then Richmond was wrong but if there is and he isn't on the approved list then Richmond was right.

    One has to do better than just provide conclusionary statements IMO ...

  8. #8
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    Just being a blogger does not make you a "media" for these areas. Usually a person in the agency accepts a request to be designated a member of the media. I think that this is Mr. Skinner (ph: 804-646-6052), public relations dept.

    Usually, "media" for these purposes are defined as brick and mortar establishments (newspaper, TV, etc.) and even some bloggers with well known blogging sites.

    ..
    Cite David...Virginia Law please.

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    Regular Member Repeater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    So, there is a "media section". Who decides who is media? Someone does. This guy may not have been designated "media" and hence not allowed in the area.
    It seems Steve Skinner acts like gun-hater Chuck Schumer:

    Media shield law moves forward in Senate - Without bloggers
    A law that would protect journalists from revealing confidential sources is moving forward in the Senate, despite its narrow view of who is a "covered" journalist.

    Twitter and Facebook, and most blogs would not be protected, according to the definition included in the bill.
    A "covered" journalist is a "professional" journalist (basically a Progressive) while 'amateur' journalists are shut out.

  10. #10
    Regular Member Repeater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Primus View Post
    Why was he carried out? I k ow he was told to leave for bogus reasons by how/why did he get picked up and carried? Did he refuse to just walk out with them?

    Sent from my XT907 using Tapatalk
    Chris Dorsey posted some comments at Style Weekly:

    City Council Meeting Degenerates Into Weird, Chaotic Mess
    A failed candidate for sheriff was forcibly removed from City Council Chambers and then carried out of the building on his back by three uniformed police officers. Another man’s refusal to yield during a public comment session led City Council President Charles Samuels to order the packed meeting into recess. When the meeting was reconvened a subsequent speaker called Samuels a “dingo.”

    ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    Cite David...Virginia Law please.
    I did try to contact Mr. Skinner to be able to provide one ... hence his phone # listed above.

    I can only try to contact them by phone ... people closer could ask in person and maybe get a cite quicker.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Repeater View Post
    It seems Steve Skinner acts like gun-hater Chuck Schumer:

    Media shield law moves forward in Senate - Without bloggers


    A "covered" journalist is a "professional" journalist (basically a Progressive) while 'amateur' journalists are shut out.
    Usually, even true "media" must request to be allowed into a media section...so even if you are from ABC news, you cannot go into the media section w/o being cleared to do so.
    So if there is a procedure to designate a person as "media" then that person must follow the procedure. If not, its a free-for-all. IMO

  13. #13
    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Repeater View Post
    Chris Dorsey posted some comments at Style Weekly:

    City Council Meeting Degenerates Into Weird, Chaotic Mess
    Thanks for the link repeater. There are some funny comments on there. I take it this Chris guy isn't well liked.

    Sent from my XT907 using Tapatalk
    "The wicked flee when no man persueth: but the righteous are as bold as a lion" Proverbs 28:1

  14. #14
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    Usually, even true "media" must request to be allowed into a media section...so even if you are from ABC news, you cannot go into the media section w/o being cleared to do so.
    So if there is a procedure to designate a person as "media" then that person must follow the procedure. If not, its a free-for-all. IMO
    I asked for a cite and got an opinion. Skinner isn't a cite either

    Anyone that reports news is the media in Virginia. Thus the move to alter the shield laws which didn't go far.

    There is a conflict between the Va. Open Meeting statute and the procedures in some legislative bodies, including the General Assembly.

    While anyone can record the meetings, some areas are designated "Credentialed Media". That's the difference. The almighty press pass. In order to get mine with the state,I had to show the following and I have to give it up on the years I lobby.

    PRESS PASSES

    Press passes are restricted to journalists whose
    primary responsibility is coverage of Virginia state
    government and the Virginia General Assembly.
    Applicants must be full‐time, paid correspondents
    employed by a news organization that is: (a) a general
    circulation newspaper that has been published for at
    least 52 weeks consecutively, (b) a public or commer‐
    cial radio or television station with regularly
    scheduled news programming, or (c) a news
    organization whose principal business is the daily
    dissemination of original news of interest to a broad
    segment of the public, and which has broadcast or
    published (online or in print) continuously for 52
    weeks. The news organization must (i) work
    independently of any government, industry, or
    institution and (ii) not engage, directly or indirectly,
    in any lobbying, political activity, or other activity
    intended to influence elections or any matter before
    the General Assembly or before any independent
    agency, or any department or other instrumentality of
    the Executive Branch.


  15. #15
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Very little has changed in the way Richmond City Council works to restrict the rights in open meetings and nothing will change until it gets very exoensive for those that perpetuate the "control" by virtue of their position of awe-thority.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  16. #16
    Regular Member Repeater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    Very little has changed in the way Richmond City Council works to restrict the rights in open meetings and nothing will change until it gets very expensive for those that perpetuate the "control" by virtue of their position of awe-thority.
    That is a really Fire-Engine Red, there! Shows how mad this really makes you feel.

    That Skinner really is a tool. This is no way to treat a Virginian who carries openly or openly records in public.

    Oh, and now this event is national, with Carlos Miller on the case. See what he has to say:

    Virginia Activist Carried out of Council Meeting for Video Recording
    And if Richmond City Council Public Information Officer Steven Skinner would make up such an outrageous lie, knowing it was on video, then anything that comes out of his mouth should be taken with a grain of salt.

    But spinning the truth is what he gets paid to do, so it was obvious business as usual for him.

    ...

    “Can you please step away from me?” asked Dorsey. “You’re threatening me, you’re in my space.”

    Dorsey then panned his camera down towards Skinner’s hands to show how close they were to him.

    And that was all the excuse Skinner needed to have him removed.

    “Are you threatening me with your gun?” Skinner asked. ” You pointed to your gun.”

    ...

    Every city council has their gadfly. Or at least should have. And unless Dorsey is being disruptive, which he wasn’t Monday night, then he should be left alone.

    Because in the process of trying to discredit him, Skinner ended up discrediting himself and the rest of the council.

    But at least he is gracious enough to publicly list his contact information.

    804.646.6052 (office)
    804.335.4054 (mobile)
    804.937.1386 (home/mobile)
    804.646.5468 (fax)
    steven.skinner@richmondgov.com (email)
    That's helpful!

  17. #17
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Remember that this is the same City that arrested a freelance photographer for photographing the police tearing down an Occupier camp in the middle of the night.
    Last edited by peter nap; 04-16-2014 at 02:59 PM.

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    Regular Member Liberty-or-Death's Avatar
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    Either the 1st amendment applies to all of us, or it applies to none of us. Same for the 2nd, etc.

    μολών λαβέ
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    And who is really shocked the the #itty of Richmond did this? Perhaps we should fill the room on the next council meeting

  20. #20
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by All American Nightmare View Post
    And who is really shocked the the #itty of Richmond did this? Perhaps we should fill the room on the next council meeting
    Indeed soon.
    Must remember to thank them too for the many contributions
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Campaign Veteran T Dubya's Avatar
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    The anti's being the opportunists they are, are flooding the comments section of the Richmond Times Dispatch. As usual they're blaming the gun. Skinner was the aggressor, Dorsey didn't really make a scene and become disruptive till he was outside of council chambers, at that point he was screaming so loud that his screams bled through the heavy wood doors and was a huge distraction.

    My opinion is this, as much of a gaping a** as Dorsey is, Skinner was the aggressor and Skinner knew he could manipulate the fact that Dorsey was open-carrying and use it against him and as a result we're all victims cause the antis have capitalized on the incident to attack our rights.

    Should OCDO members get involved and rush to his defense? I don't know. Dorsey is a nut, I personally wouldn't want to associate with him, but I will concede he was wronged. I was at the meeting and I watched the video.

    In the grand scheme of things Dorsey and Skinner's shenanigans hurt police and fire by taking up the media coverage. So neither one are in my good graces. The hearing on the budget was that night and Dwight Jones has proposed an ordinance to further suspend the career development of police and fire. I would have rather seen police and fire as the top story.
    "These are the shock troops (opencarry.org) of the gun lobby. And, they are not going away."
    Ceasefire NJ Director Brian Miller, NJ.com, August 20, 2009

  22. #22
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T Dubya View Post
    The anti's being the opportunists they are, are flooding the comments section of the Richmond Times Dispatch. As usual they're blaming the gun. Skinner was the aggressor, Dorsey didn't really make a scene and become disruptive till he was outside of council chambers, at that point he was screaming so loud that his screams bled through the heavy wood doors and was a huge distraction.

    My opinion is this, as much of a gaping a** as Dorsey is, Skinner was the aggressor and Skinner knew he could manipulate the fact that Dorsey was open-carrying and use it against him and as a result we're all victims cause the antis have capitalized on the incident to attack our rights.

    Should OCDO members get involved and rush to his defense? I don't know. Dorsey is a nut, I personally wouldn't want to associate with him, but I will concede he was wronged. I was at the meeting and I watched the video.

    In the grand scheme of things Dorsey and Skinner's shenanigans hurt police and fire by taking up the media coverage. So neither one are in my good graces. The hearing on the budget was that night and Dwight Jones has proposed an ordinance to further suspend the career development of police and fire. I would have rather seen police and fire as the top story.

    I can't add much to that TD.

  23. #23
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    Reva M. Trammell says: "We're Sitting Ducks!"

    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    Indeed soon.
    Must remember to thank them too for the many contributions
    Open Carry apparently makes some members very phobic:

    After Dorsey incident, Trammell calls for security changes - She says Richmond members are ‘sitting ducks’ during meetings
    It’s unclear exactly what precipitated the dustup with armed activist Chris Dorsey at Monday’s City Council meeting, but the incident has prompted at least one official to call for better security at council meetings.

    Councilwoman Reva M. Trammell, the chairwoman of the council’s Public Safety Committee, said Tuesday that the council should consider a stronger police presence near the front of the room and stricter credentialing rules governing access to the media gallery on the council dais.

    “We’re right there,” Trammell, 8th District, said of herself and her fellow council members whose backs are turned to the media gallery where the confrontation unfolded. “Sitting ducks.”

    One thing the council can’t do is ban guns at City Hall, which is impermissible under state law, according to city officials.
    " ... according to city officials." Geez, you think?

    Get this:
    Council President Charles R. Samuels, 2nd District, said the U.S. Constitution is the highest law and it would be “very difficult to argue that City Council has the authority to trump that.”

    “It’s just, sometimes there are people with guns that are more concerning than others,” Samuels said.
    Yeah, like how, Chuck (Can I call you Chuck?)?

    Reva wants to pursue this:
    Trammell said she intends to bring the incident up for discussion at the next meeting of the Public Safety Committee.

    Asked if he feels any changes are warranted, Samuels was noncommittal.

    “I’ll leave it up to council to decide what actions they want to take, if any,” Samuels said.
    So, when is the date of that PSC meeting and is it open to the public?

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    I asked for a cite and got an opinion. Skinner isn't a cite either

    Anyone that reports news is the media in Virginia. Thus the move to alter the shield laws which didn't go far.

    There is a conflict between the Va. Open Meeting statute and the procedures in some legislative bodies, including the General Assembly.

    While anyone can record the meetings, some areas are designated "Credentialed Media". That's the difference. The almighty press pass. In order to get mine with the state,I had to show the following and I have to give it up on the years I lobby.
    Well, its the best I could do; this isn't the Lindberg baby case. And it appears as if the information I provided was accurate, as always.

    If Skinner is a tool or not (and he may be a source for a cite~hence I provided it), if he is the one authorized to make such determinations then that's that (I doubt that any appeal would be successful for the guy in this respect ~ although I do not see any evidence that he even applied for a press pass).

    Usually the press area is located such that it does not obstruct the view of the gen. public's seating .. so there is good and bad with this.

    I think folks are attacking windmills here.

  25. #25
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    Well, its the best I could do; this isn't the Lindberg baby case. And it appears as if the information I provided was accurate, as always.

    If Skinner is a tool or not (and he may be a source for a cite~hence I provided it), if he is the one authorized to make such determinations then that's that (I doubt that any appeal would be successful for the guy in this respect ~ although I do not see any evidence that he even applied for a press pass).

    Usually the press area is located such that it does not obstruct the view of the gen. public's seating .. so there is good and bad with this.

    I think folks are attacking windmills here.
    I'm not sure when your information started being accurate and if you think we're attacking windmills.....you're more than welcome to go over to the Connecticut forum.

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