Lone Jack, Mo. – An 80-year-old cancer survivor and Army veteran says that he fears for his life after being beaten, bloodied and left with broken bones by police.
"I'm afraid for us to even drive out of our driveway or to get on the street. I don't know what they will do," Libby Swan, Bill's wife, said.
Bill Swan was on his tractor when he noticed a utility crew attempting to dig on his property and approached them to tell them to vacate his property. The workers then called police, according to KCTV 5.
When officers arrived they yanked Swan off the tractor and took him to the ground leaving him bloodied and with broken ribs.
"It's very unnerving that something happened to him," said his wife Libby, adding, “He’s 80, he’s a veteran, and he has had cancer.”
Officers of course claim that Swan was a threat to them, and that he attempted to back his tractor into a police cruiser and then tried to leave the scene. They claim they gave him verbal and hand signals to stop but he refused and attempted to run the officers over.
“Police got there and told him to get off his tractor, he was on his own property, and said, ‘I don’t have to get off my tractor,’” said Bill’s grandson, Tim Swan, according to Fox 4.
According to Mrs. Swan, her husband suffers from hearing loss and most likely couldn’t hear the commands to exit the tractor.
“Sometimes I have to get right in his face and talk to him,” Libby Swan said.
One of the officers was able to get on the tractor and shut it off. Police claim that Swan then became violent and swung at officers and attempted to get the officers firearm out of its holster.
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The claim that Swan went for an officers gun should ring alarm bells, as this is often a claim officers make after beating someone in an attempt justify their use of force.
Swan was then taken to the police station where he was booked for disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and two counts of assaulting a police officer.
Libby Swan has a very difficult time believing that her husband provoked the incident as described by law enforcement and no longer feels that she can trust her local police.
"If I was here and someone was trying to get into my house, I don't think I would call them. I think I would call the highway patrol or someone like that,” said Mrs. Swan.
Bill’s grandson Tim has stated that he doubts the police account of his grandpa “resisting” police, saying his grandfather is nearly deaf and can barely make it up a set of stairs without assistance.
“They maced him, then drug him off the tractor,” said Tim.
Even if Swan did refuse to get off of his tractor, the manner in which these officers brutalized an 80-year-old man speaks volumes about their regard for the citizens they allege to protect and serve.
Swan’s grandson Tim went on say,
“It makes me worried, police officers are supposed to serve and protect, and instead they’re going after people that pay their taxes, that do the right things, and are law-abiding citizens, and they’re picking on the small guy.”
The excessive force used against this grandfather is a reminder that no one is safe from being brutalized by law enforcement in police state USA.
Jay Syrmopoulos is an investigative journalist, freethinker, researcher, and ardent opponent of authoritarianism. He is currently a graduate student at University of Denver pursuing a masters in Global Affairs. Jay's work has previously been published on BenSwann.com and WeAreChange.org. You can follow him on Twitter @sirmetropolis, on Facebook at Sir Metropolis and now on tsu.