Southern Fried Justice Becoming Epidemic

Eugene Siler

“You’re not fucking listening. You hear what I told you? I told you not to be talking. Didn’t I tell you not to be talking? That’s just the fucking beginning. This mother fucker right here, he loves seeing blood. He loves it. He loves seeing blood. You’re talking too much. Listen to what I’m telling you. He loves fucking seeing blood. He’ll beat your ass and lick it off of you.”
We just covered one story about justice served southern style. Radly Balko also brings to mind another case, this time in Tennessee. While the transcript of the Lester Eugene Siler torture tape has been available for some time, Balko’s link provided my first chance to hear the audio.
If you don’t recall the story, Siler was brutally tortured by Tennessee police officers during a drug raid. We would never have heard this story had Siler’s wife not secretly turned a tape recorder on. While five cops were convicted, they were given extremely lenient sentences — mostly for civil rights charges, as opposed to the life terms they all deserved. Contrast this with Cory Maye, who was given a death penalty for what seems to be a case of reasonable self-defense.
People say that Abu Ghraib was an isolated event. They say the Cory Maye case is an isolated event. They say the same of Abner Louima and many more cases. How many torture cases do we have to endure before we begin to realize they aren’t so isolated. There is an evil streak within some people. We are placing these people in positions where they can abuse their power. We need to change our policies and our political leadership.
EVERY AMERICAN SHOULD LISTEN TO THIS AUDIO and maybe we can begin to form the resolve to create effective political change.
Update by Nicholas Sarwark: The Knox News site has a page with links to various documents in the case and information about the sentences the officers received.