Arcata, CA – In a series of videos that have gone viral, a law student was apparently arrested for the crime of making a police officer mad, and the student’s refusal to immediately follow the officer’s demands led to a nasty fight.
The first video shows Samantha Alonso-Luna asking a plainclothes female officer which jail her friend Shea was going to. Shea was reportedly arrested for hanging out of the sunroof of a car at a nearby oyster festival fundraiser.
Luna was apparently intoxicated and a passenger in the front seat of a vehicle. Neither is a crime, but the officer claimed she was being rude and was inches away from being arrested for “public intoxication.”
After running Luna’s name and date of birth through the California Police database—which checks for outstanding warrants—the two got into an argument over Luna’s last name. Mexican-Americans often have two last names, which the young law student explained to the police officer. Her tone was quite belligerent but again, not illegal.
The officer, who apparently lost her patience, then ordered Luna out of the car, something the young female said she was not going to do. That is when things took a violent turn. No crime had yet been committed up to the point where Officer Janelle Jackson decided to jerk Luna out of the car.
Legally, she had committed no crime and should not have been detained but that is precisely what happened next. Luna resisted what she considered an unlawful arrest, having committed no crime—unless not giving both of your last names is a now crime.
The female officer was the one to strike first, slamming Luna’s head against the door as she jerked her out. The officer then started pulling Luna’s hair. Luna reached and grabbed a handful of the officer’s hair, refusing to let go. That action resulted in not only “resisting arrest” charges but also “assault on a police officer” charges as well.
The struggle continued with backup officers arriving. It is unclear if the first officer on the scene was telling the female officer to let go of Luna’s hair or telling Luna to let go of the officer’s hair. The escalation continued up to the point where the officer was practically begging her fellow officers to cut her hair to release Luna’s grip on her locks.
“I hate you guys…racist as fuck,” Luna can be heard screaming as she protested having three police officers manhandle her. “Stop resisting,” her friends can be heard saying.
As The Free Thought Project has reported, officers are trained to say “stop resisting” in an effort to win bystander support who often repeat the phrase. “You’re hurting me,” Luna cries at the end of the video.
The entire incident could have been avoided if Luna had followed the advice TFTP has given on multiple occasions. Hers is a great example of why citizens should refuse to talk to police. “I don’t answer questions,” is a valid response, and it allows citizens to exercise their Fifth Amendment rights.
What’s more, as TFTP has reported, a court case was decided last year by an appellate court in New Jersey which affirmed that citizens are allowed to defend themselves against police brutality.
The court’s decision involved the case of Darnell Reed, 33, who was beaten to a bloody pulp by officers during an arrest in 2013 in which he faced multiple charges. A jury found him not guilty on seven of the eight charges, with the only guilty charge being that of “resisting arrest.”
However, the appellate court ruled last year that Reed was denied a fair trial in that instance, as the jury had not been instructed to consider whether or not Reed had that right to defend himself against police brutality. In the videos above, it can be argued that Luna acted in a similar manner.
Samantha Alonso-Luna was eventually arrested and charged with giving a false identification, public intoxication, and resisting arrest and assaulting a police officer. Luna is planning to sue.