Attempt To Charge Nissan LEAF After Hours Ends With Owner Pepper Sprayed And Tackled By Police (w/video)

APR 30 2015 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 171

Nissan LEAF Charging Incident

Nissan LEAF Charging Incident

According to the Santa Monica Daily Press, “A Santa Monica man was arrested on April 21 while attempting to charge his electric vehicle, and the incident is sparking discussions of racial profiling and the use of force that mirror the current national debate.”

*Editor’s note: Any and all racial comments will be deleted

Here are the facts…

Justin Leland Palmer, a Nissan LEAF owner with no criminal history, was “at the Virginia Avenue Park electric car charging station on the evening of April 21. He was asked to leave the charging station by police, he refused, he was asked for his identification, he refused, he was then tackled to the ground, pepper-sprayed and arrested,” according to the Santa Monica Daily Press.

But details and specifics are under dispute.

The Santa Monica Daily Press contacted Sgt. Rudy Camarena, who says that “officers were making a routine check of the park as part of their patrol. The park closes at 11 p.m., but the electric vehicle charging stations close at 8 p.m.”  Upon obtaining public records, the Santa Monica Daily Press concludes that officers registered as being “at the park at about 10:54 p.m.”

Nissan LEAF Charging Incident

Nissan LEAF Charging Incident

Camarena instructed several others at the park, some of whom were charging electric cars, that the park was closing and that the charging stations operating hours were over.  Presumably, the others who were contacted obeyed the officer’s request to unplug and leave the park, but not Palmer:

“Camarena said when contacted, Palmer refused to leave the charging station and after making multiple requests for him to leave, officers decided to issue Palmer a citation. Palmer refused to provide his identification as part of the citation process, at which point officers decided to make an arrest for obstructing an officer and violating the posted hours of the park.”

Palmer “actively resisted” arrest, according to a statement issued by the Santa Monica Police Department:

“Officers deployed pepper spray and physically restrained him. The subject was taken to Santa Monica Public Safety Facility where he was fingerprinted and booked. At the Santa Monica Jail the subject complained of pain. He was transported to the Santa Monica Hospital for treatment and was medically cleared. The subject was subsequently issued a citation and released.”

Palmer would not comment.  Instead, he directed questions to his attorney, Justin H. Sanders, a Partner with Sanders, Roberts & Jewett.

The attorney tells the story, via the Santa Monica Daily Press, like this:

According to Sanders, Palmer routinely uses the charging stations at the park. On April 21, he said, Palmer entered the park at about 9:30 p.m. and found all the charging bays in use. He waited in his car until about 10:30 p.m. when a charger became available. Palmer drove from one side of the parking lot to the now-open charging station, where officers contacted him.

Sanders described the officers’ behavior as “aggressive” from the start and said his client was singled out for police contact despite the presence of other people using the park and charging vehicles. He said when Palmer asked officers to explain why he was being prohibited from using the stations, the officers demanded to see identification. Palmer questioned why his identification was needed, as he felt he had done nothing wrong, and it was at that point he was arrested. According to Sanders, the arresting officer cuffed Palmer’s hands behind his back, swept his legs from under him and took him to the ground. While on the ground, Sanders said, a second officer used pepper spray on Palmer.

Part of the event was captured on video, embedded below:

Stop the InjusticeFather of 4 tries to charge electric car and gets beat up by police, pepper sprayed & arrested.

Posted by Christine Gonzales-Palmer on Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Palmer’s court hearing is scheduled for May 22.

The police department is asking that witnesses with additional info contact Captain Wendell Shirley from the Operations Division at (310) 458-8952.

Officers claim they “tried to de-escalate the situation,” while Palmer’s attorney is confident that “witnesses and record of the events will exonerate his client of any wrongdoing,” according to the Santa Monica Daily Press.

As of press time, no official complaint had been filed by Palmer against the police department.

Source: Santa Monica Daily Press

Categories: Charging, General, Nissan

Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply

171 Comments on "Attempt To Charge Nissan LEAF After Hours Ends With Owner Pepper Sprayed And Tackled By Police (w/video)"

newest oldest most voted
EBE

One more reason ev’s should have more range and or a range extender.
No one should depend on public charging exclusively like this poor guy.

don’t let this happen to you

philip d

Or at least don’t depend on public charging at night if you live or work in Santa Monica. The Santa Monica police don’t really like to chit chat.

Forever green

+1

Sublime

1: Hi, I’m Rob Lowe and I have a Tesla.

2: And I’m shady-charge-after-hours Rob Lowe and I have a LEAF.

1: I can’t get over the tire burning and bone crushing acceleration

2: And I can’t get over the eye burning and bone crushing police tackles

1: Don’t be like this me, get rid of your LEAF and upgrade to a Tesla.

ffbj

Kind of funny.

Eric Cote

Yep, Teslas are great if you have the disposable income, and also want to restrict yourself to their super highways.

I’ll stick with my Volt for at least another 5 years. It gets me anywhere I want to go while driving gas free on my daily commuting.

Hopefully in another 10 years, there will be a viable full BEV that lets me drive through mountainous Vermont and NH in the winter without concern of range anxiety.

Until then, my Volt keeps putting a smile on my face daily.

Will

Being restricted to the supercharger network is hardly an issue given the rate of expansion.

Mayhemm

You DO know that Teslas can charge almost anywhere, right? Not just at Superchargers?

Ryan

We have both Rob Lowe’s in our garage lol

mike w

LOL

no comment

this article points out another problem with public charging (one that i have noted in the past i might add): mr. palmer had to sit around and wait for a charging station to become available. when you wait at a gas station, the wait is typically relatively short because the time to fill a gas tank is not that great. but when it comes to electric vehicle recharging, not only does the recharging take more time but if there are others already there, it makes an already long time even longer.

Disappointed

The Park in question is in the “Red Zone” for crime in Santa Monica. It is routinely patrolled. Given the Parks history for drug dealing and gang activity,anyone sitting alone in a car in this park after dark, would be a concern for residents and the police.
You have read the “Press Report” here is The Police Report:
http://santamonicapd.org/Content.aspx?id=52058

The suspect’s behavior grew increasingly suspicious as he failed to respond to reasonable requests.
Place blame where it belongs and avoid the “Righteous Indignation”, that for some,, suits their personal needs!

no comment

what you need to understand is that what you are reading is the police version of events. as has been repeatedly shown recently, the police will almost always give a self-serving version of accounts. the reason why video evidence has been so compelling is that it has often shown that the police version of events doesn’t match what actually happened.

furthermore, as to the park being closed at 11:00pm, according to the video, the video was taken at around 10:30pm. since 10:30pm is before 11:00pm, one can reasonably conclude that the park was still open when mr. palmer was accosted by the police.

martinwinlow
Unfortunately, you are displaying exactly the kind of narrow-minded and ‘see only what suits you’ mentality that is fuelling all this anti-authority nonsense in the US as well as the UK, currently. The article clearly states “The park closes at 11 p.m., but the electric vehicle charging stations close at 8 p.m.” If anything, this incident highlights the absolute necessity for ALL law enforcement personal to be equipped with at least audio recording devices if not video, too. Cost is simply no longer an excuse as such equipment is now so cheap. This is so obviously the right thing to do, it simply beggars belief that it has not yet been implemented anywhere in the world (to my knowledge). The cost would be recouped in the first year from refuting malicious complaints against police alone (this costs London, UK’s Met Police over £8m per year), let alone the saving in court time when suspects, shown the video prior to charge, would not bother to contest the case because the evidence is so compelling. Equally, of course, it would help ensure that police strive to be professional when dealing with members of the public protecting both police and suspect. I would… Read more »
Colin Lee

This sounds like exactly the brand of ignorance I expect to hear from someone who lives far away and has no idea what is happening across an ocean. Cost has very, very little to do with why police are not wearing cameras yet.

Do you remember #pointergate? The global laughingstock where a police union concocted a media conspiracy where our yuppie mayor of Minneapolis was secretly affiliating herself with violent gangs?

#pointergate was entirely because the Minneapolis police union was furious about being asked to wear body cameras by both the mayor and the chief to root out bad apples. In cities across America, many police are trying to resist cameras. Some for bad reasons, but many for the reasonable reason that the video becomes public record and any accidental statement of personal politics at work could result in an effort to have an officer fired.

Larry

Authoritarian personality much?

liberty
obviously the police officer was either bad, or badly trained. He took a normal possible curfew violation by a normally law abiding citizen, and turned it into resulted in resisiing arrest and peper spraying. There was no reason to arrest or pepper spray, other than the man did not quickly conform to show the police officer the respect the officer demanded. Who ever doesn’t do that gets punnished, and then we have defenders of the bad training or these bad cops. We even have defenders when the police kill people for being mentally retarded and not understand their commands, or for talking back in a legitimate arrest. I say its unacceptable to defend this behavior. It has led to deaths by police. Don’t support the police union in defending scummy behavior. You know the police prosecute people for failure to comply with unlawful orders to comply with stopping video taping in public places. It offten takes more than one year in court for a judge to tell the officers and police chief this is an unlawful order, but few take the time to get that far in court and pay fines to the police intimidation.
Robert

Yes, and to balance the argument, the one arrested is ALWAYS innocent and being harassed by ‘THE MAN…’

Unplugged

Wow! It sounds like you were there right next to him If you’re a witness, maybe you should let the Santa Monica police know.

On the other hand, if you are engaging in pure speculation, anything you say about the “suspect” isn’t worth my response.

And yes, I’ve always been suspicious about those Leaf owners. You never know when an early adopter will engage in drug use. They’re all hippies!!

JFS

I know EV’s are growing in popularity, but the chances that a drug dealer (or metal scrapper, or tagger) in that park just happens to be driving an EV are astronomically low.

Someone sitting in an EV in a parking lot with EV charging stations, all of them occupied, is NOT acting suspiciously, and should not be treated as a suspicious person. Period.

Someone starting to charge while others are still charging, once a slot opens up? Also not suspicious, and not someone who should be singled out. Period.

Mike

If I had to guess, I’d say he wasn’t dependent on public charging at all, ie he could charge at home if he wanted to. I’m guessing the chargers at the park are free and he was trying nickel and diming. I did something similar when I first got my Leaf, charging at Costco and GM and anywhere else that had free charging to top off while I jogged, before I realized it was way too much trouble for minimal savings, especially with other people who were crazier about it. Other people can be fanatical about that kind of stuff. There were a couple of people who would park their Leaf at the Costco overnight charging while they got their spouse to pick them up at night and drop them off in the morning. Costco eventually got sick of it I guess, since I noticed a couple of months after I had stopped they had started locking up the charger cables at night and you had to ask a manager to unlock them in the morning to charge while shopping.

no comment

my guess would be that the public charging stations are level 2 EVSE where i assume that he would use a level 1 EVSE to charge at home. i mean, the cost of electricity isn’t great enough to explain why mr. palmer would wait for a charging station. that would only make sense if it would have been quicker to wait and recharge than to go home and recharge.

Mike

You’re underestimating how far people will go to score something that’s “free”, even when it doesn’t look like it’s worth the time or effort or inconvenience expended. Like I said, there were a couple of people parking at Costco overnight and having their spouses pick them up and drop them off. This is a Costco in Torrance, CA, so it’s a suburb with mainly single family houses, so home charging isn’t an issue. That has nothing to do with time, that has to do with trying to save a couple of bucks without any consideration as to whether it’s truly worth the time and energy wasted.

no comment

granted there are crazy people but i just can’t assume that all of the people who were using the public charging stations at that park are crazy; it just seems like an assumption that is too far fetched.

Unplugged
You not only manage to build a comment based on completely blind speculation; you defend that comment with more speculation. How can you come to the conclusion that this guy is a freeloader? You’re no better than the person above who takes the police word as gospel, when we’ve seen time-after-time that the police lie on reports. It took me one traffic stop after graduating to learn that cops lie. I was stopped by a lieutenant in my home town who claimed that I pulled in front of his unmarked police car while he was going through a ten lane intersection. I had a performance car at the time, and I asked him if he had to take any evasive maneuvers to avoid me. He said that that was irrelevant. If he was in the intersection when I pulled out, I had to yield to him. I said that rule was no where in the vehicle code. He asked if I was calling him a liar. No, I said, just perhaps he didn’t know the law. To make a long story short, he changed his tune in court, lied, and claimed he had to take action to avoid an imminent… Read more »
no comment
police have a tendency to do what they think they can get away with doing. a few months ago i was pulled over by a police officer. when he asked to see my driver’s license i asked him if he wouldn’t mind telling me why he pulled me over. his story was that he had been following me (which seemed odd in its own right) and that i had made 4 lane changes in a roughly 1 mile stretch of road. without directly calling the officer a liar (which he was) i expressed some skepticism about his assertions. i didn’t want to argue with him for the very reason that you discovered; if you argue your case at the time of the stop it gives the officer a heads up on what the argument is that he will face in court and it gives him time to try to “fix” his story. suffice it to say, had that officer written me up for a ticket, i would have pressed him in court to explain exactly how i did 4 lane changes in a 1 mile stretch of road (which to me would seem like fairly suspicious driving). a second officer… Read more »
JFS

Santa Monica has a lot of higher-density housing. It’s quite possible that he normally charges at work, and tops off at a public station to make sure he’s got enough for the commute. I think we all know that having 5 or 10 miles to spare makes all the difference, when it comes to a relaxed commute.

Driverguy01

This has got to stop, the U.S. is becoming more and more of a police state.

Longevity

That is a ridiculous statement to make. In this instance the police were doing what the people of their city expect them to do and is enforce the laws. They tried to get Mr. Palmer to leave. The charging station closed at 8 p.m. and the park closed at 11 p.m. Whether you like the authority of the police or not, when they tell you to do something, DO IT. If you don’t like it, TOUGH. Complain about it another day or you WILL NOT like the consequences. The police have a shitty job to do and they don’t need people refusing to follow their lawful orders and enforcement of the law. Like I said, I am referring to Mr. Palmer’s occurrence.

Patrick

“Whether you like the authority of the police or not, when they tell you to do something, DO IT. If you don’t like it, TOUGH”

Exactly, all these beatings/death in the states all gos back to the “victim” doing something illegal and instead of apoligizing and paying the fine they instead argue with the poilce, resist arrest and or run… guess what the police have every right to use what ever force they deem necesary to stop you. Or you could just do EXACTLY what they say and you will be fine.

Its as much or more peoples problem with law/authority as it is the cops useing excessive force.

kdawg

“Exactly, all these beatings/death in the states ….”
——-

I definitely would not say “all”. There are case where people were shot just for getting their wallet out to show ID. Remember, you are innocent until proven guilty. Excessive force is another problem. Many, many, examples of that.

no comment
what you and “longevity” don’t seem to understand is that the U.S. is governed by a document called “the constitution”; that document also governs the actions of police. so, no, just because a police gives an order does not obligate a person to obey the order because police can only legally give “lawful” orders. it’s easy for people like you and “longevity” to tell other people to forgo their constitutional rights as long as you are the person whose constitutional right are being violated. there is a long history of human events in which people stood by while others among them had their rights violated by the government. those people were ok with the government violating other people’s rights until the government started to violate their own rights. that story has never had a good ending… another aspect of the legal system is that we have adopted the napoleonic code in the sense that notice has to be given to the public of all laws. if there was an 8:00pm close of the charging stations, it was apparently not a well known ordinance since there were other people also charging their vehicles at the time. if i had been mr.… Read more »
Alonso Perez

That’s all true if you accept the police account.

I don’t. Palmer had no record at all. Suddenly he turns into a jerk? How dangerous can a Leaf driver be?

Let’s see what the witnesses have to say.

Alonso Perez
“Whether you like the authority of the police or not, when they tell you to do something, DO IT. If you don’t like it, TOUGH.” Dude, that’s the definition of a police state right there. It’s not a question of “liking” the authority of the police. Police authority resides in the lawfulness of their orders, in their common sense, and in their credibility. Right now all three are in question rather broadly. Police training has been militarized too much. I don’t fault the cops themselves, who are being brainwashed to think as if they were in enemy territory, but the system has to change. In this particular case, being California, the arrest was likely illegal. There is no law that says you have to produce ID. ACLU advises people to comply to avoid arrest, but notes that such an arrest is usually illegal. There was clearly no probable cause here that Palmer was committing or had committed a crime. Also, if a cop thinks he has a shitty job, he should quit and do something else. The last thing we need is to make allowances for armed people in a bad mood because they don’t like their job. There was… Read more »
CherylG's_DirtyLittleSecret

If the others that were charging left because they were asked to and the stations had a visible posting of operating times, why did this one stay to argue?

Why did he feel he had the right and special privilege that others did not?

Alonso Perez

That’s the police version. We don’t know the exact story.

I’m having a real hard time believing that a black man who managed to have no arrest record and who drives a Leaf could have at any time presented even a minimal threat to the officers.

no comment
if the local ordinance had indeed closed the charging stations at 8:00pm, then mr. palmer would have been violating the law. however, if indeed that were the local ordinance, it does not appear to be a well known one since it appears that people regularly charged their vehicles until the park closed and there were other people charging their vehicles at the time that mr. palmer was assaulted by the police. we of course don’t have all the facts from this article, but it certainly appears that whatever it was with which mr. palmer was charged (which is a big IF since we still don’t know what charge was asserted against freddie gray and he’s dead now) it doesn’t sound like a charge that will stick. it would not surprise me if the district attorney declined to pursue this case. until police come to fear firings, criminal prosecution and incarceration for their misdeeds (as opposed to the vacation time that they currently get) bad police will have every incentive to engage in the kind of excessive force behavior that seems apparent here. i mean, it is hard to reasonably imagine how allegedly improper charging of an electric vehicle can result… Read more »
Aaron

Go live in Singapore for a while, then let me know what a “police state” is. Until then, shut up.

QCO

Well, I have lived in Singapore. And there are no crazy gun happy cops running around showing their testosterone. It’s a very civilized place and very safe, with no high drama “take down” games.

Unplugged

That comment is so sad, “Go to Singapore before you call this a police state.” Really? We now need to compare the U.S. to a police state in order to complain about police abuse? You are no better than those who said during the Vietnam war, “Love it or Leave it.” No, I’m here to change it.

I don’t “shut up” in the face of governmental abuse, I work to change it. I don’t blindly believe the police, because I know better. Don’t lecture me about how BAD it can get in Singapore. That’s the point. No one wants to live in Singapore. We want a free society, and not one run by the cops. So if anyone needs to “shut up” it is those who accept injustice and tell others to do the same.

Goaterguy

The video is edited and doesn’t show how the police handled the arrest. We don’t know why Palmer didn’t follow the signs and agreed to leave at the time the park closes or why he didn’t want to provide his ID. The information is simply inconclusive here.

Austin

I don’t believe that CA has a ‘stop and identify law’….do they? if not, then he didn’t need to identify himself. Maybe that’s an oversimplification, but seems like a mountain was made out of a mole-hill…

kdawg

Once they decided to give him a citation, they needed his ID. It’s apparently part of the citation process.

Alonso Perez

No. You either have an ID law or you don’t. The “citation process” is a bogus excuse. Either he was being detained or not. The officers could have issued a ticket without needing his ID anyway.

kdawg

How do you issue a ticket to someone for jaywalking w/out an ID?

JakeY

They can’t require an ID if they only suspect you committed a crime (unless you are in a “stop and identify” state). They can however require it if you are driving (since a driver’s license is required to drive).

Finally, if they are issuing a misdemeanor citation for a crime they saw you commit, they can certainly require ID. A misdemeanor citation means that the officer is issuing you a citation in lieu of arresting you, but can always arrest you if you refuse to cooperate with the citation. Even though you may feel you didn’t commit any crime, that’s for the court to decide. Resisting will get you nowhere except more charges and arrest. Also, signing such a citation is not admission of guilt (although many people think it is, read the actual text on the citation you are signing).

no comment

i’m not sure what a “stop and identify law” means: if the suggestion is that such a law would allow police to stop people and demand identification, such a law would be unconstitutional. on the other hand, if a “reasonable suspicion” (where this term is very much of a slippery slope) is established, police can investigate.

there is the whole “stop and frisk” fiasco, where “stop and frisk” is really a gross perversion of court decisions that held sobriety checkpoints to be constitution searches under some circumstances.

Brian

If the charging stations were clearly marked as closing at 8pm, the man was in the wrong. The police had every right to ask him to unplug. However, I find it very hard to believe that the use of pepper spray was necessary in this situation. That wreaks of excessive force.

Paul Stoller

I still call BS if the park is open until 11:00 PM then the charging stations should be open until 11:00PM as well. It makes no sense to have them on different schedules. If he had just been parked in a non charging space the officers would have still had no merit. This seems to be a clear case of police officers that shouldn’t be wearing the uniform, nothing involved in this case warantted the excessive force demonstrated by the police. These guys should be fired.

kdawg

Wouldn’t the electricity be cheaper after 8pm also?

FME III

And what is the rationale for closing the recharging area at 8 p.m. if the park is open until 11? Whole thing could have been avoided if both had the same hours.

kdawg

I’m not sure, but maybe you can’t plug in after 8pm since there is a 3 hour limit. So anyone that plugged in before is OK?

Just thought that was a coincidence, on the 3 hrs. The Plugshare comments say closes at 6pm or 10:30pm?? So is it 8pm or what?

LEAF_n_PiP

The city should just turn off the power at 8pm if they are really serious about those hours and all EVs would leave.. but it seems they would prefer to write citations to boost their revenue.

Brian

Whether or not the idea of not charging from 8-11 is “bogus”, if it’s the rule, it’s the rule. That was my only gripe here. If he was not following posted rules, the police have every right to ask him to unplug. (It is unclear to me whether the 8pm limit was posted).

I disagree with the implication that one can simply ignore the law if they don’t agree with it. Especially if it means fighting with a cop. The police are supposed to uphold the law, whether they agree with it or not as well. If you think they should allow charging until 11pm, then petition the appropriate authority to have the rule changed. Don’t just plug in anyway and ignore the signs.

Eric Cote

Police have every right, but if they choose to exercise that right in a discriminating fashion, then there are legal issues in doing so.

Versions of the story suggest others were also plugged in. Maybe they weren’t with their cars, maybe there weren’t others plugged in. We don’t know for certain, but those are key details to determine if discrimination/racial profiling took place here.

Driverguy01

The article states that all the plugs were in use at that time, so he was not alone using the plugs past 8pm.

Eric Cote

He may have been the only person physically present though. Either way, this seems excessive.

Goaterguy

Or the only one that didn’t agree to leave.

Brian

Yeah, it seems like he wasn’t the only one plugged in. But he was the only one giving the cops a hard time.

Dave K.

Bottom line is he was breaking the rules, whether the rules are appropriate, or the police response was justified is certainly open for debate. Seems like a pretty small infraction, couldn’t they just take his tag # and mail him a ticket?

Nelson

+1

NPNS! SBF!
Volt#671

Someone out there

Well, at least he’s alive. It seems the police in the USA shoot first and ask questions later.

Boris

Oh please, I am a European who lived in the US for many years. Use common sense and you’ll be fine. I am not saying things are perfect. It’s not rocket science to follow orders from a cop. I personally believe US would be a much better place without those handguns in every other glovebox. In Europe if you get in a bad neighborhood, you can get robbed, in the US, you can get killed, big difference.

Someone out there

“Use common sense and you’ll be fine.”
Sure, if you are white.

Aaron

Skin color means nothing. This is 2015, not 1960. If you want to know the difference (sorry, mods), watch Chris Rock’s video on the difference between black people and n—-s. It’s on YouTube.

kdawg

I watched the first episode of the new season of “Through the Wormhole” with Morgan Freeman last night. The question was “Are we all bigots?” An interesting experiment with shooting people (on a screen) was conducted. Typically civilians (white & black ) shot black people more. This was also true of trained officers, but they did better.

http://blogs.wsj.com/speakeasy/2015/04/29/watch-clip-of-are-we-all-bigots-episode-of-morgan-freemans-through-the-wormhole/

Nick

> skin color means nothing.

There is a lot of data to refute that statement.

Skin color has a huge effect on outcomes when interacting with all levels of society in the United States.

Eye color on the other hand, really does mean nothing. 🙂

JFS

It’s easy to be blind to the experiences of others (or to realize that different rules apply situationally), especially when you don’t catch all the cultural nuances.

deLu

The video is no longer available. Is the Leaf parked backwards?

Mark B. Spiegel

“On April 21, he said, Palmer entered the park at about 9:30 p.m. and found all the charging bays in use. He waited in his car until about 10:30 p.m. when a charger became available.”

May I suggest that Palmer instead acquire a Prius?

Paul Stoller

May I suggest all of the officers involved find new lines of work, they clearly have problems with dealing with the public in a manner that doesn’t involve brutality.

Will

This is my problem with the LEAF. Waiting an hour just to use a charger? That really does suck.

QCO

We don’t know the full circumstances (maybe he just didn’t have enough power to get home, maybe he was doing something else more serious), but you’d think the police would have something better to do than cracking down hard on people peacefully charging their cars. Especially for a somewhat bizarre law that closes chargers early and does not really merit strict “zero tolerance” enforcement.

Where’s the victim in an “EV charging crime”?

Think of how much it cost for all that take-down stuff and jail time. And now the guy has a record which makes it almost impossible to get a decent job so he’ll have to make it up with crime, which puts him back in jail and costs taxpayers even more!

Pretty stupid, all in all.

kdawg

Zero emissions?

Zero tolerance!

kdawg

There is some discrepancy. The officers say “The subject was subsequently issued a citation and released.”. The video says he’s still in jail?

Sublime

He’s obviously been taken to a black site in Nevada to reprogram him to buying a gas car. It’s a conspiracy, it’s all run by Exxon.

Aaron

That’s racist! hahahaha

ffbj

Not to say that the police handled this poorly, but it is hard, these days, to believe their accounts on just about anything.

kdawg

I wonder why he waited an hour for a spot to open up? Looking at Plugshare, there are 60 other charging stations nearby.

kdawg

I also read these 2 posts on Plushare about the chargers.

Virginia Avenue Park – Pico Lot
Hours
NOT 24/7: Chargers are shutdown after 6pm

Hours
NOT 24/7: Chargers are shutdown after 10:30pm

Sublime

I was wondering why they don’t just put a timer on the circuit. I guess they do or there’s a manual switch someone neglected to switch that day.

Evil Attorney

Looking at the signs, it appears that there is a 3 hour charging limit between 8am-6pm. I don’t see any signs saying NO charging after 6pm. Check out the pictures here: http://www.plugshare.com/?location=11519

Also, I believe that many Santa Monica residents will leave their car over there after work to take advantage of the free electricity. The article says he was from Santa Monica, so I doubt he needed the charge to get home (Santa Monica is rather geographically small).

kdawg

That seems to be the gripes on the Plugshare comments.

* Always being used by locals
* They give tickets if there more than 3 hrs.

Honestly though, 90% of the chargers I use are in my hometown area. They are free and I opportunity charge when I can. It helps me avoid using gas.

Ambulator

Good comment. Based on the signs I agree that charging is allowed until 11pm, and the police were wrong.

Jeff D

Good point. Could he be driving a Leaf and NOT know about Plugshare!?!?! I don’t own an EV yet and I still pay attention to Plugshare. It will be a valuable tool to me when deciding what EV to buy when the time comes.

Alonso Perez

Probably didn’t think he’d be there an hour. Started reading InsideEVs comments for the Georgia guy video on his phone, and by the time he was done an hour had gone by.

Jeff D

With anything like this, the truth lies somewhere between the two explanations. It seems to me though that there should be no reason for the police to act this way over charging after hours. They fell into the trap it seems that all too many officers fall into these days, and that is getting aggressive when their authority is challenged. They need to focus more on enforcing the law and not enforcing their manhood.

Paul Stoller

If an officer is unable to control their response when their authority is challenged they should find a new line of work, they aren’t emotionally equiped for the job if their reponse is to use excessive force. We have an epidemic of people who should have never been given a badge in a position to hurt people when they are unable to deal with the stresses of the job.

kdawg

Once Tesla finishes their autonomous car, their next endeavor will be a Robocop.

Randy

We’ll have a bunch of machines on the news fighting to take each other down. Auto cars running from robocops.

EVBlogger

No, u r wrong, There is law u need to follow, that’s the first rule.Plain and simple
U should show ID, that common sense, no matter what. He got arrested for not cooperating with police, not for charging.

Paul Stoller

Please listen to what I am saying, it’s fine he was arrested. It’s not fine that excessive force was used, and the officers that used it should not be policer officers, period.

Mark

If the park is open until 11 PM why would charging close at 8 PM? If he went to plug in at 10:30 surely he’s entitled to stay for that last 30 minutes? I think the Police could have handled the situation better. Also it looks like demand exists in this location for 24 hr charging.

Joshua Burstyn

Why does the park need to close?

Peter g

Most people work in the day time. If the park stays open at night people may start exercising more. Isn’t it enough that the electric car owners are desimating the fosil fuel industry, now you want to destroy the healthcare industry too.

Kent

Some parks need to close because, after hours, some people will go to dark, isolated places to drink, make out or whatever. I live across the street from a park that “closes” at 10:00 PM. Sometimes teenagers will park there to drink or have sex.

Alan Campbell

1. The park closes at 11 p.m., but the electric vehicle charging stations close at 8 p.m.

– He know the charging stations were closed

2. Palmer entered the park at about 9:30 p.m. and found all the charging bays in use. He waited in his car until about 10:30 p.m. when a charger became available.

– More people violating the law does not change the law.

3. Palmer refused to leave the charging station and after making multiple requests for him to leave, officers decided to issue Palmer a citation. Palmer refused to provide his identification as part of the citation process

– Now he just makes his situation worse.

4. at which point officers decided to make an arrest for obstructing an officer and violating the posted hours of the park.

– Officers had no other choice.

The facts seem obvious. Palmer violated the law that started the situation, then was uncooperative and got arrested. He challenged authority and lost.

Why didn’t he just find another charging station at a location was legally open?

Alonso Perez

Pleas note that the actions of the officers aren’t facts; they are claims.

There were other people charging after 8 PM, and nobody was treated like Palmer.

Kent

Just because other people were doing it doesn’t make it right.

kubel

No, but it implies a possibility of racial profiling.

Kent

These days, everything implies racial profiling.

Alonso Perez

Right or wrong is a separate issue. We are dealing with an ordinance. There are two possibilities. Palmer deserved a parking ticket, or not. I’ve gotten parking tickets, but nobody threw me to the ground to issue them.

Kent

Did you refuse to provide ID to a law enforcement officer? Accepting a ticket is not an admission of guilt. You can argue your case in court. That’s what courts are for.

Alonso Perez

I have never “refused” to provide ID but I have been stopped without ID (though not while driving), and stated simply that I had no ID on me, which was true. There is no law that obligates people to have an ID on them at all times. This has never been a problem, but I’m white and I don’t spend much time in difficult neighborhoods, even less so at night.

As a driver of course I always have my driver’s license and I always produce that if asked. I’ve been fortunate never to have been stopped on an occasion where I forgot my driver’s license, which is unusual but over 30 years it has certainly happened. Even so, I would not expect to be detained, thrown on the floor, and pepper sprayed. I would expect to be given a ticket and/or a citation of some kind, as well as a lecture from the cop.

Peter g

Biggest Baddest meter-maid ever. I think expired tags are a reason for deadly force.

Its good the Santa Monica stop these electric car owners now. Before they ask for better lighting around the chargers, and available public restrooms.

Warren

What constitutes “actively” resisting arrest? I don’t think this guy was tackled or pepper sprayed.

http://insideevs.com/charges-get-dropped-against-nissan-leaf-driver-who-stole-5-cents-worth-of-electricity/

MikeM

To be fair, the officers “tried to de-escalate the situation”.

You know how over-excited we all get in those hot-and-heavy charging session situations.

Clay

This has nothing to do with an EV, this is all about a dumb a$$ not following instructions and he got what he wanted. When asked to leave, “nope not gonna do it”. When asked to produce ID, again “nope not gonna do it”. Continued to act like a child and was dealt with accordingly as he was trowing his little temper tantrum.

Loboc

Parks are closed at night to give police probable cause. If the park was open 24/7, it would be full of thieves, bums and drug addicts.

This guy went through all this to get 30mins of electricity? Sheesh. Think maybe the wrong vehicle was purchased.

CounterStrike Cat

The picture clearly show the charging stations are not INSIDE the park. The sign, that says the park is closed at night, is behind the charging points and everyone with a little judgement would come to the clear conclusion, that the park area begins BEHIND the sign and the parking lots are not part of the park, the parking lots are part of the street.

http://www.plugshare.com/?location=11519

kdawg

If you go to Google Maps street view, there’s a blue sign on the entrance to the parking lot. Unfortunately the resolution isn’t good enough to read it 🙁

offib

At least he wasn’t shot, unlike so many others…

Seriously, US, get this sorted. We are all on this side of the Atlantic are getting the impression that the men and women who are supposed to protect you are far from that description. Yes, the Gardaí and any other are a bit similar, like a gang of messers or kids who only look out for each other in the school yard, but at least the vast majority don’t have guns.

All they (the lot you’re stuck with) seem to be focused on is making money through all kinds of citations, seizing of property and meeting quotas on drug convictions. And egotistical too, expressing your rights by denying to show your ID or even questioning their practice is not enough respect for them.

Anyway, I predict this may be on TYT soon, given that this is a common type of story for them and that one of the guys there, Iadorola, I think, does read this site.

Open-Mind

You’re believing a false narrative that’s being promoted by anarchists and race hustlers. Fortunately, our reality is quite different.

GrokGrok

The “Black Lives Matter” movement is wrongly premised in that cops who kill/injure/mistreat people of any race almost never face prosecution, much less conviction. Google “Otto Zehm” or “Dorner newspaper delivery” for a couple of examples. Read Radley Balko for a daily string of examples. That’s not being a race baiter or anarchist, that’s being factual.

Open-Mind

There are about a million police officers in the USA. Are a very small subset bad? Yes, as you’ve pointed out. But the vast majority are good people just trying to do a crappy and thankless job. If you are courteous, respectful, and obey the police, it is extremely unlikely you will ever be hassled. Unfortunately, such common sense is no longer taught, and the result is stories like this one.

And despite the above reality, the anti-cop brain-washing campaign continues.

Alonso Perez

If they feel it’s a crappy job, they shouldn’t be doing it. Nobody is forcing them to.

Yes, you should be very corteous to the police, and you should follow reasonable instructions, which includes all lawful instructions even if they make you unhappy.

But you should not “obey” the police, nor should they think of you in terms of obedience. They work for you, not the other way around. Your courtesy and willingness to follow instructions should be a function of letting them do their job, not of fearing unwarranted physical assault.

You should not expect to be subject to unjustifed force, and should seek legal redress if subject to it.

kubel

Police are more of a paramilitarized occupation force than civil servants who protect and serve. This culture is likely carried over from military occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan (most police are veterans). This is demonstrated with their violent behavior, their us-vs-them attitude, and their tendency to escalate situations rather than de-escalate.

It’s no secret that police PR is working overtime to repair the image of cops in this country that is constantly damaged by videos of police abuse and misconduct.

ESepulvedaBlvd

Having grown up in the ghetto, I observe that this gentleman made several mistakes. Now Santa Monica may not be a ghetto. But the cops think it is.

Ghetto Rule Number 1 Avoid all people and situations who/which can harm you, because they will.

Ghetto Rule Number 2 If stopped by a Cop, game them. Yes Sir, No Sir, and most importantly I don’t know, Sir. Say little, if detained or arrested say nothing. Cops are armed with lethal weapons, the rule of law and sneaky Stalinesque techniques to get you to admit you did something wrong. You will lose any conflict with a Cop at least initially.

Dealt with this my whole young adult life.

Y’all just getting it.

Blue Shirt’s the new Brown Shirt and they don’t give a eff about you or your agenda.

Welcome to the future. Next stop private police squads. You know Silicon Valley’s gonna have a tough one.

DanuSouth
As an middle-age African American who has rarely had a negative situation with the police and never been arrested, I am surprised why people have such a hard time understanding how the process works. 1) Stop arguing with police officers. When an officer is on duty he has the upper hand, You are not going win an argument or debate, The citizen is never on equal footing when dealing with the police regardless of your race, 2) Turn off ESPN for one day and read a book on your rights as a citizen (the Internet / Youtube) is not a replacement. If stopped by the police (fairly or unfairly) understand your rights and comply. If you don’t wanna comply be prepared that you might be arrested. Don’t resist. If the law is on your side journal sep-by-step what happen and take action afterwards. 3) Your past arrest record follows you FOREVER. When pulled over or stopped by the police, you will 9 times out of 10 be asked for your ID. Why? Because they are going to check their nationwide database for past arrests and outstanding warrants. EXPECT IT!!! From their things usually are uneventful or problematic. Is it fair??… Read more »
CounterStrike Cat

Opening hours for public charging stations are like opening hours for the Internet.

CherylG's_DirtyLittleSecret

Depends on the neighborhoods laws.
Anybody know what they are there?

Should Starbucks, McDonalds, et all keep their free internet on all night just because you think it should be available and stupid to shut it off?

GrokGrok

The sign which is visible in the background of the photo does not prohibit charging after 8 PM, it merely indicates it’s a 3 hour parking spot reserved for EV charging until 8 PM (rather like parking spots in busy areas might carry a time limitation during the day). Logically, why would the park be open for every other purpose until 11 PM, but it be a violation of law to charge your car after 8 PM? If that’s their intent, they need a different sign. Having said that, it would be wisest to comply with the police demands, even if idiotic, and fight the point later.

J Mac

Soooo… How many Police officers does it take to stop a nasty, dirty, electricity stealing, man?

I’m sorry, the number of police standing around tells me they know there is something wrong.

If two officers can’t handle a single male at what essentially constitutes a traffic stop, what do they do for more serious offences?

Anon

Put an automatic timer on all the EV Chargers in the park, so that they turn off at the same time, every day.

This prevents tempting people into using infrastructure when access is time-limited.

Santa Monica HAS the money to do this tiny upgrade to prevent EV Charging Situations / Negative City PR, like this…

CherylG's_DirtyLittleSecret

cue the pissed off EV’r who needs the charge right now.
And the vandalism occurs…..

kubel

Cue the troll. How are we doing today Cheryl?

Anon

Vandalism would at least warrant the use of pepper spray, including physically subduing the suspects. 😉

jzj

There are many commenters here. I’d be curious as to each commenter’s general history of police interaction. I’ll go first.

I have had perhaps a total of a couple of dozen police interactions over several decades. In all but a couple of cases the cops have been generally polite. In a couple of cases the cops let me off when they didn’t need to, and in a couple of situations the cops were petty in enforcing minor infractions.

However, in each and every case, the cops focused on asserting control over the situation, and this required me to be patient and respectful, even when arguing with them. And this was true when I was a long-haired punk and now that I am a middle-aged professional. I would be surprised if this is not always the case with all cops in all situations with all persons.

Do others want to pony up to their actual police interaction history?

kdawg

Some good, some bad. They are people like everyone else.

Alonso Perez

I’ve never had a problem with police, but I’m white and harmless looking.

Even then, I’ve noticed an attitude change over the years that rubs me the wrong way. Cops are more likely to have a military demeanor and to adopt a more intimidating tone. Definitely noticeable over a 30 year period. If you extrapolate, it does not lead to anywhere good. This needs to be reversed.

Forever green

This is another case in support of extended range electric vehicles. Mr Palmer might have been desperate for a charge. I have a Nissan leaf and one night I was running out of electric range and I drove up to a Nissan dealership, the gate was closed and the guard was gracious enough to let me in.
The young people today like to have their civil rights respected. I am a 58-year-old black man living in Baltimore. I’ve seen one of my friends got beating by a cop. On another occasion one of my friends got shot and killed by a cop. To me it’s about staying alive. When stopped by a cop I do as I am told and I only speak when I’m asked a question. The young people in Baltimore today would rather die than to be treated like second-class citizens. There are some cops in Baltimore who are willing to grant them their requests. I’m not saying all cops are corrupt, just most of them. So things are changing.

kdawg

I don’t think he was desperate for a charge if he sat there for 1 hour and there were 60 other charging stations nearby. Buy maybe he just likes those charging stations, or those are free where others aren’t?

CherylG's_DirtyLittleSecret

If you follow the rules, sh]t like this won’t happen.

What a concept right?

CherylG's_DirtyLittleSecret

I’m not breaking a law or committing a crime because MY LIFE MATTERS!

Life doesn’t have a color!

webdbbt

Wow, a lot of harsh comments! If have not committed a crime you do not have to provide identification to a police officer, especially in California where their ‘Stop and Identify’ law was stuck down by the United States Supreme Court for vagueness and later repealed entirely. This man may have violated a minor ordinance and police are supposed to be professionals trained to DE-escalate situations. They had other options short of arrest. They could have ticketed his vehicle, for example, which would not require the man to produce identification.

Look, maybe this man was unreasonable but remember this tax-payer’s “crime”: Loitering a few minutes after park closing requires pepper spray and an arrest only if the cops were looking for excitement.

MotoEV

Maybe citizens should have to ride shotgun with a police officer for so many hours a year to fully appreciate what they are charged to do and the amount of lawlessness they encounter. As we have seen, police confrontations escalate from something initially very banal.

Police are no social counselors. The person arrested is not entitled special rights because he feels entitled. At public charging stations like these, some people plus-in and leave the car, They risk the park being closed and gated and have to wait till the morning to get their car.

For those who stay with their car, they are asked to unplug and leave when directed to do so. I hope there will be clarity as to what happen but this is not the 1st time an EV owner wants a free charge and feels entitled to use public wall sockets when they want to.

Lensman

Perhaps we as a society need to take a deep breath, and step back and think about why we have police.

Some people refuse to abide by the law. Some people act like the law doesn’t apply to them. Some people get belligerent and hostile when asked to comply with city ordinances (like the closing time of a public EV charging station), even if they’re asked politely.

Police are charged with dealing with those people. They have to deal with them every day. It’s their duty. If they didn’t do it, chaos and anarchy would rule. If there were no police, the kind of rioting we saw in Baltimore a couple of days ago would be the norm, not a rare exception.

Do police sometimes abuse their power? Yes. Police are human, and humans make mistakes. And unfortunately, some join the police force because they are attracted to the power, the ability to push others around.

But let’s not tar all the police with the same brush as the relatively few bad apples. And let’s not forget what would happen to our society, to -any- society, if the police simply disappeared.

Alonso Perez

Who’s saying police should disappear?

The problem here is not a few bad apples. It comes from above and its militarization. What the heck should a typical police department need a mine-resistant, 55,000 pound MRAP armored vehicle for? That’s costly, crazy, and leads to the mentality of an occupying army. Heck, it would happen to me too. If I was sitting inside one of those things, I’d feel like I’m in Fallujah.

Lensman

I certainly agree that something is very wrong when police start acting like an army of occupation, as happened in Ferguson, Missouri. Anything can be taken too far.

But a lot of the posts here, including yours, accept Mr. Palmer’s account uncritically. There are two sides to every story, and all we’ve gotten here is one side. Perhaps what the police report is a lot closer to an unbiased account. Or maybe it’s not. I wasn’t there — and neither were you.

People who weren’t there believing an account they heard of police brutality or overrection, even in the absence of evidence, is a large part of why tensions are running so high on this subject right now. For example, the “Hands up, don’t shoot!” meme is based on a lie. That’s not opinion — it’s fact.

source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/wp/2015/03/16/lesson-learned-from-the-shooting-of-michael-brown/

Do the police sometimes overreact? Yes. And sometimes people overreact -against- the police, too… believing accusations made against them even when there is no evidence to support such accusations.

kubel

Google testilying and reportilying. Police perjury is an epidemic in the US. It didn’t just start with the Walter Scott shooting.

I wouldn’t trust anything the police say. If there’s no hard evidence, I’ll err on the side of the business professional with no criminal history.

MotoEV
This situation of self-entitlement is getting out of hand, The police cannot ‘negotiate’ with every citizen who does not like the rules and laws currently in-place. No one wants to pay for more cops so they can waste their time being ‘warm and fuzzy’ with Mr. Palmer. If people make bad choices and buy a car that requires them to wait at a free public charger past 10:00 PM at night, Is that the problem of the police? There are plenty of damn ChargePoint stations open 24/7 where he can PAY and charge. I would be suspicious of a person who refused to leave when asked repeatedly to do so for something so trivial. It’s at night, and they have no way of knowing if the vehicle belongs to him because he refuses to present his ID. It could be stolen therefore his resistance to produce his ID, Victims are not victims when they clearly contribute to the final outcome. Excessive force was not used and with guns so freely present in society, I would not wait to find out if he is carrying on in his car or on his person. Not following the established laws and reasonable orders… Read more »
ffbj

Just how many officers does it take to take down one relatively small man. It’s like a swat team shows up, even interviewing the witness that says she saw the whole thing. Immediately they start trying to question her as to why the officers would use excessive force. Taking him down to the ground, as if they must have been a logical reason to do such a thing. Notice how he questions her about how many times she actually saw him being punched, and again asking about the victim, and he was a victim, provocation.
The days of rubber hoses in back rooms have merely evolved.

Bobby sweet

I love how the cops are trying to bate her in the saying things he sounds like a lawyer

ModernMarvelFan

Another LEAF owning self rightous idiot…

If the park is closing at 11pm and it is 10:50pm, and you are refusing to leave the charging station area, police certainly has a right to ask you for an ID to see what is going on…

How many kWh are you going to get out of those Clipper Creek station with 6.6kW for less than 30 minutes? 3.3kWh without charging loss. About 10 miles of range at most…

So, for 10 miles of “free charging”, this guy got arrested and pepper sprayed instead…

What an idiot.

How come it is always the LEAF owners who get into troubles with the law?

kubel

I’ll bite.

If it’s 10:50PM and the park closes at 11:00PM, you aren’t breaking the law by remaining there before 11:00PM. If you aren’t breaking the law, police have no reasonable suspicion to conduct a Terry stop. If police have no reasonable suspicion to conduct a Terry stop, they can’t arrest you for refusing to produce ID. If police can’t arrest you for refusing to produce ID, that makes the slamming to the ground and subsequent pepper spraying assault and battery. the police, who are supposed to uphold the law, broke the law- and victimized someone in the process.

California is a stop-and-ID state, but reasonable suspicion is a requirement of all Terry stops. Refusing to produce ID is not a crime in these situations, so the arrest was unlawful.

Summary: If the guy broke no laws, he’s upgrading that LEAF to a Tesla Model S P85D compliments of the city.

Ben Brown

I’m normally fortunate to have a choice where I charge, at home or at our public charging stations. I can imagine though, a situation where I’m nearly out of charge, go a charger and someone is there who has more miles than they need to get home or has gasoline assist and want to completely fill the battery while I wait and need to keep from being stranded with my BEV. We Don’t Know if that was the case, but its another possible scenario. Easy to imagine after some of my own experiences, other drivers focused on their rights and not our mutual benefit. …easy to imagine being frustrated too with the other drivers…

ModernMarvelFan

But in this case, if that is the case, then the owner can easily try to explain this to the officer instead. Maybe the officer will be nice, maybe NOT. We don’t know. But at least present a nice attempt. “Be confrontational” at 10:45pm at night in a public park where the closing time is 11pm with a police officer is just dumb or arrogant… and maybe both…

kubel

If police are in the wrong (ie, the park wasn’t closed yet and the guy had every right to be there), refusing to produce ID is neither immoral nor illegal. In this case, you have every right to refuse the police when they demand ID. If they arrest you, it’s payday.

Bill Howland

Editorially, InsideEv’s has the issue wrong. Its not a racial issue, its a Dystopian Issue and you’ll see more and more of this in the future.

I miss the country I was supposedly born in.

Now will this ever improve prior to Divine Intervention? Unknown to these pair of eyes. But I suspect Americans are too insouciant.

There is some hope that at least the black community still has a pulse, but burning down the local liquor store when the cops murder you hopefully will let the majority of the community speak that it is counter-productive. Of course, the design is to have people fighting each other so people en masse don’t discern the real problem. Since cops always lie, and the judicial system is ‘suspect’ at best, it won’t take any great leap of intelligence for the black community to see what’s going on. Its not a racial issue. Where do they think the drugs come from in the first place. Now that’s a racial issue, but it is more one of control.

Steven

Is there any possibility that the state of charge in the vehicle was too low for home to simply leave?

Is there any possibility that if the vehicle had sufficient charge to make it home, he would have done so?

I’m amazed at how so many people are “over-thinking” the issue.

Forever green

Why the decision has to be either bad cops or no cops, can’t we have better cops (honest cops)? They coined the phrase here in Baltimore, “if you see something, say something”. However, good cops would see their colleagues doing some crooked stuff and keep they mouths shut. We would like cops that represents all the people all the time and carry body cameras. Is that too much to ask? I don’t know if Mr. Palmer said or did something to provoke the situation, but because of my personal experience with cops I’m always suspicious of the cop’s bad behavior, and I tend to take the side of the citizen until I see proof to the contrary.

Bill Howland

“…Why can’t we have better cops?”.

That’s easy, the better cops are always weeded out. Even Serpico moved to Switzerland.

SM EV'er
I am not certain the police had any authority to chase the EV chargers out of the spaces. City staff has repeatedly changed the hours of allowed parking in the park arbitrarily without any justification, and at their will with no legal authority. It is not authorized by any city law, and has been done without community input and without City Council approval. For over 20 years there was no specific prohibition against parking in general in the parks, particularly Virginia Park. The park closure law, passed in the 90’s, was not intended to deal with parking, but with preventing the park from becoming a hangout for drug dealing and homeless encampments. Sometime this past year staff implemented a parking curfew in Virginia Park which was 3 a.m until 7 a.m. Then, sometime later, staff once again changed the signs and put the restriction of parking at 11 p.m. However, the signage was not at the chargers at first. They were placed in the other areas of the park. There appears to be no legal authority for the time limitation for EV charging. How arbitrary was staff? My understanding is that the chargers at the Virginia Ave. side of the… Read more »
Mayhemm

To me, this sounds like a case of selective enforcement, like traveling 10 mph (kph) over the speed limit. Everybody does it and 99.9 percent of the time the police ignore it. But, technically, you ARE breaking the law and, as such, are at the mercy of any particular officer’s mood/whim.

Phil

As a longtime Santa Monica resident, I can confirm that we have among the worst, most abusive and unaccountable police I’ve ever seen. Laws are simply not consistently applied, nor do they apply at all depending on how one looks. In this case, as in so many I’ve witnessed, the police were *looking* for someone to bully.

This will no doubt result in another expensive settlement, not discipline against the officers, and yet more mistrust of our increasingly abusive police.

Troy F

I just want to know if his Leaf continued to change while he was booked, jailed, transported to the hospital, and subsequently released?
Troy.
#

hljmesa

Wow…….everyone has missed the solution. The police can simply video the entire situation and ticket the owner of the vehicle. If it is the man driving this Leaf, then he is fined accordingly. No violence, no arguments and if the Nissan driver is mugged after hours, well too bad for him. The police tried. Sheeeesh……

Paul Scott

As a Santa Monica resident, and EV advocate, I support having the public EVSE infrastructure available 24/7. It’s too important to the EV community, and especially during off-peak times, for this valuable equipment to be off limits.

Several of us are in the process of petitioning the city to allow free and unfettered access to these charge stations. The park can remain closed at night, but if you are actively charging your car, it should be legal to do so.

Rose Vill
The city of Santa Monica is not filing charges against Justin Palmer in connection with his arrest while he was charging his electric vehicle in Virginia Avenue Park on April 21, 2015. A statement issued by the City of Santa Monica on May 5, 2015 said that after careful examination of the circumstances a decision was made not to file charges against Palmer. http://mynewsla.com/crime/2015/05/05/man-pepper-sprayed-arrested-in-santa-monica-park-wont-face-charges/ According to Mr. Palmer’s attorney, Justin H. Sanders, “The City Attorney’s decision not to prosecute Mr. Palmer was made within few hours of the incident and is consistent with our position from the beginning that Mr. Palmer did nothing wrong. Mr. Palmer is clearly the victim of police brutality and extreme excessive force.” http://smdp.com/charges-man-pepper-sprayed-park/147738 I think Mr. Palmer’s rights have been violated by the police officers with the use of excessive force and false arrest. He was not resisting arrest but merely asking why the police wanted his ID since he thought he did not do anything wrong. There were other people in the park charging their cars at the time but he was singled out. http://www.surfsantamonica.com/ssm_site/the_lookout/news/News-2015/April-2015/04_29_2015_Attorney_Claims_Super-Aggressive_Santa_Monica_Officers_Roughed_Up_Client.html Mr. Palmer fell to the hard concrete face down, hand-cuffed, pepper sprayed and physically assaulted by the police officers.… Read more »
Raymondjram

What a bunch of useless posts over such an incident! All that Leaf owner had to do was leave the park and call a tow truck if his charge was too low to return home.

upswept

He’s a dope. He should have gotten a Volt and this wouldn’t be a issue. He bought a lesser engineered Japanese vehicle and now he’s paying the consequences. Go law enforcement personnel.

David
With all due respect for property rights, local laws, and police authority, he should have obeyed police and complained later about their improper command to leave. A larger issue is that charging EVs at night is made difficult by police and security guards everywhere, at almost every type of station, parking restrictions or not. It is not yet understood or socially acceptable activity, so they are suspicious of it. I would encourage EV station hosts, cities, security guards, and police everywhere to open up charging hours 24/7 to the extent it is feasible and they are comfortable with it. And during open hours, regard charging as a legitimate human activity at any hour. Consider that EV users show up with expensive assets and purpose, and that their security interests are well-aligned with those of the property owners. They are like security guards, themselves, and are likely to photograph and report any suspicious activity in the area to police. In comparison’s with gas stations, we must remember that gas is 100 times faster than charging. Imagine having to wait at the pump for another car to be moved, or being interrogated by police, then multiply that by 100 times. In order… Read more »