On this past Fourth of July, Patricia Cameron helped lead a rally with a Confederate flag-burning. This was a week before it officially came down at the South Carolina State House. Cameron and others lit the flag on fire in a grill at a public park. Almost three weeks later, at nearly midnight, when she and her 8-year-old son were both asleep, the police arrived at her home to arrest her.
The particular park she used doesn't allow grills.
Why in the hell would police show up at almost midnight to confront and arrest a woman over a park violation? In an interview with Daily Kos, Cameron told us why:
"They said it was because that was the only time the officer could get there, but I know that officer well. I have filmed him during multiple encounters between us. We are far from friends. I think it was intimidation, and I think that officer wanted to finally shut me up. And this was his way of showing dominance and power over me."
She said, "At almost midnight, alone with my son, thinking of all those names, Sandra Bland included...all I could think was I was going to become another hashtag."
Even the department admitted that the time it was served wasn't normal, but gave a canned reason why it happened that way:
Manitou Springs Police spokeswoman Odette Saglimbeni says an officer showing up late at night to issue an arrest summons isn't common for the department.
“It sort of happened to be that time of night when it happened,” she told The Daily Beast about Cameron's late-night wake-up call. Officers, she said, might have been preoccupied during the rest of the day with other duties. “They were just not able to get out there until that time.”
I'm not buying it and you shouldn't either. The police clearly showed up that late to intimidate Cameron. It'd be different had the flag-burning even happened earlier that day, but it didn't. I'd love to see how many other times police have visited homes because of similar park violations in the middle of the night.
What's your best guess on how often they do that?