Family of great-grandmother beaten by California Highway Patrol officer plans to sue

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LOS ANGELES -- The family of a 51-year-old woman shown in a video being repeatedly punched by a California Highway Patrol officer says they plan to sue the agency.

"How do I know he's not going to hurt me or anyone else?" the woman's daughter, Maisha Allums, told reporters Sunday. "So I am just here with a voice for my mom and everyone else."

The beating took place Tuesday along the Santa Monica Freeway and was caught on tape by passing motorist David Diaz.

"This is not just jabs, they are hooks," he said. "Those are lights-out punches. Those aren't like taps.

"You see it, you heard it. It was like 'thump, thump, thump' and then you see her head bouncing 'bam, bam' on the concrete. Then you hear her screaming, 'No, don't, stop.' Then you even -- at the end where she has her hands up like this -- when it's clear there is no more resistance, he takes another four or five shots."

The woman who was beaten is Marlene Pinnock, a great-grandmother.

Caree Harper, the lawyer who is now representing her, says Pinnock's injuries are severe.

"Her family went to visit her," Harper said. "She has multiple lumps in her head, lumps on her shoulder like the size of a plum, bruises and lumps all over her upper body."

A police report released Friday says the woman posed a danger to herself and other drivers because she was "walking within traffic lanes" at times.

It also says that when an officer asked her to stop, she "continued ignoring the officer's command" and ultimately she "becomes physically combative."

"The tape only shows a small part of what transpired," California Highway Patrol Assistant Chief Chris O'Quinn told reporters. "There are events that led up to this. Until all that's collected and put into perspective we aren't going to be able to make a determination,"

The agency didn't identify the officer, but says he has been put on paid administrative leave.

"The CHP, to justify the beating, (are) saying they were trying to protect her from harm," Harper said. "With a beating like that no one wants to be protected. She only needed protection from the officer."

Pinnock is in a hospital under an involuntary psychiatric hold.

Harper says a hearing will take place Tuesday to determine whether she will remain in custody longer.

"We are concerned she's still being involuntarily kept at a facility," she said.

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23 comments

    • Anonymous

      Given the ethnicity, It’s not out of the realm of possibility..all on welfare of course.

      • Anonymous

        Given your ethnicity you would probably enslave an entire race and force them to build a country for you wipeout another race and call it cleansing pollute the earth and the oceans and claim global warming isn’t real

      • Anonymous

        I’m a African American women that works for the HHSA aka welfare dept. I talk to upper class individual to people who’s been on the system for there whole life. I don’t think there’s anyone race of people who falls under either category. With that being said that does not give a police officer or any other person the right to beat someone. What if all black Americans decide to go off in the upper class neighborhood and just start beating and shooting everyone because they classify a few to be inhumane devils. Such as yourself.

    • jose

      Not exactly impossible, in 10 years my mom will be 48 and my nephew will be 18 old enough to have kids there for making her a great grandma.

    • mark

      she was on the ground whatever transpired before that is irrelevant. just another reason not to trust law enforcement. there like a box of chocolate you never know what your gonna get.

      • fgs

        I’ve been a cop for twenty years, and trust me, most of us on the job do not think this was justified.

      • Anonymous

        Just putting my comment here Mark since FGS says he is a cop with 20 years. Make that the experience of two cops with 20 years. The department using the excuse that it was because she was a danger to herself and others and that not everything that transpired before was on the video makes me almost as sick as watching what this officer did. The officer is human, and humans can screw up badly, and there may be something going on in him, or something that happened to him that set him off like this, but if that were the case, he still had no business remaining on the job with the public, anymore then a drunk driver has any justification for driving, regardless of personal problems. What he did is not justifiable in any sense of the word.

  • Gondodeb

    Paul what kind of math are you using….???? I have a kid at 14, my daughter at 14, and my granddaughter at 14, how old am I? And yes I know people who are ggparents before 50. But in response to the article, I’ve always taught my kids, “hands up, yes sir, no sir, how high should I jump sir…” Resisting an officer is going to get you Arse beat.

    • Anonymous

      Police officers are taught to not use their fist unless the situation has devolved into a fist fight and there is no better way. This officer, that probably did start off wanting to help her became very, very angry for some reason and I personally could careless what that reason was other then maybe he needs some help himself. He is not trying to arrest her by beating her with his fist. He is assaulting her. If my mother when she was alive had escaped from the Alzheimer’s unit and was walking down the road, I would certainly be happy if a police officer did their job and went to check on her, help her, arrest her if necessary. Beating her is not going to play for any reason.

  • Dale Gross

    How much more evidence to we need that police are lawless vigilantes licensed by the state to do whatever they please. Our justice system is beyond corrupt. Lawmakers, cops, prosecutors, judges, corrections officials, probation and parole folks, hearing officers, the list goes on and on, all have each other’s back. The U.S. Constitution is merely an obstacle to them and laws are only for suckers.

  • Anonymous

    this is common from our police! they answer to no one. this man will get a slap on the wrist and go back to his life.

  • Linda Berry

    Here is a perfect example of WHY Christopher Dorner had so much popularity. Mr. Dorner was fired for reporting excessive force. Shame on the CHP so called “officer of the law”. Your true colors shined through brilliantly… you scum!

  • Unknown

    california is not safe with those kind of monsters patrolling the highways, just shows how tough he is by beating up an old lady, what is justice nowadays

  • Anonymous

    Has it occurred to anyone that maybe it’s not the brightest idea to start wrestling with a police officer in the middle of a busy highway. I’m not saying what he did was right, but sometimes you gotta look at your own part in things.

  • Anonymous

    I think its hilarious that you guys are more concerned as to whether this lady is a great grandmother or not.

    • fgs

      that’s because it wasn’t a relative or loved one of theirs. If it were, they would be outraged and stick to the relevance of the incident. .

  • Linda Berry

    When it comes down to it and you look at the violent way this trooper behaved, he is probably a closet wife beater. Seriously, what kind of man would ever hit a woman the way he did? And to do this in the name of the law is appalling! If the agency who employs him finds that his actions were warranted then I truly hope the Justice Department will step in because this is NOT a “defensive” action that I would ever want done to my loved ones in the name of the law!

  • Bob Bascombe

    llegal imprisonment charge explained:
    He straddled her and refused to let her get up during the entire attack.
    • Reply•Share ›
    Avatar
    justicedue • 14 hours ago
    The list of the cop’s infractions against this lady is as follows:
    1.Assault and Battery
    2.Improper Police Procedure.
    3.Use of excessive force.
    4.Criminal Assault.(He beat her instead of following Police Procedure,before and without arresting her and advising her of her Miranda Rights.)
    5.Criminal Assault with intent to maim,injure or disfigure. (same reasons above plus the manner in which the assault was perpetrated, and its duration).
    6.Illegal imprisonment for the Purpose of Assault and Criminal Neglect and Endangerment. t
    7.Failure to request Professional medical assistance for the lady immediately after the attack

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