Our Shazam Kianpour & Associates criminal defense blog is perhaps one of the longest tenured blogs in Colorado. The firm has been diligently striving for well more than a decade to keep our valued and diverse readership timely informed on engaging and personally meaningful topics and stories.
We have covered a lot of material over that span.
Nothing like this, though, which we can perhaps preface best by simply stating in headline form the bottom line in a story that has garnered Colorado some global attention recently.
To wit: Man arrested for playing with daughter.
If that befuddles, it should. The “crime” was not drug trafficking. Nor was it something like sexual assault, vehicular homicide or felony DUI.
Rather, the arrested individual’s offense was tossing a ball back and forth with his daughter in a Brighton Park.
That behavior in the now social-distancing era spawned by COVID-19 grabbed the attention of Adams County police officers earlier this month. They approached the man — coincidentally, a former state trooper — and, following his refusal to identify himself, slapped him in handcuffs in front of his 6-year-old child.
The ex-trooper refused to provide ID because he found the officers’ conduct to be overzealous and without justification.
“We were just having a good time, not near anybody else,” he told reporters following the incident.
The Brighton Police Department was widely called out for the matter once the story gained media traction. That was fueled by a former city councilmember’s filming of the incident. His video commentary offered up sharp criticism of what he was seeing.
“Yeah, it’s Sunday,” he stated, “and the Brighton Police are apparently arresting a dad for throwing a ball to his daughter.”
The detainee was held only for a short time before being released. Shortly thereafter, the police department stated that it was “deeply sorry” for the incident, calling it “an overreach by our police officers.”
The story, while notable, is likely not an anomaly. Other social-distancing police-citizen interactions have a ready potential for occurrence and escalation.
What individuals and families can and cannot do during the current health crisis is unquestionably more than a bit unsettled and murky.
Questions or concerns about COVID-19 restrictions and individual prerogatives in going about daily life — especially instances leading to police questioning, detention and criminal charges — can be addressed to a proven legal defense team.