“I mean imagine—all I did was come running, wave my hands and come running out, and the next thing I know I’m on the ground,” White explained to Halsne through a certified American Sign Language interpreter.
Here’s the link to Prisonmovement’s coverage.
She was attacked in her home, and called Tacoma, WA. police via video interpreting service. The service – as they always do – identified her to police as a Deaf individual. When police arrived at her home, she ran out of the house seeking their protection. They yelled “Stop,” which she, of course, couldn’t hear – so they tasered her.
Halsne discovered that when someone who doesn’t speak English is booked into the Pierce County Jail, staff calls interpreters on the phone so they can explain basic information to the new inmate like charges, medical needs and the time of their initial court date.
Deaf inmates don’t get that same courtesy because the jail does not have a video phone which allows for sign language communications.
Now, unfortunate though it may be, I do understand their actions. Police are faced with life and death situations every day. They often don’t have the luxury of being able to use judgement beyond survival instinct. What I don’t get however, is how they can then lock her up, without an interpreter, for 3 full days.
Prisonmovement’s Weblog is – as most of you already know – one of our favorite sites, and they did an excellent job with this post. Please click on the above link and learn more.
- Innocent deaf woman spends 60 hours in jail without interpreter (prisonmovement.wordpress.com)
- Demand Justice for Lashonn White (deafinprison.wordpress.com)
- Deaf Woman Tasered (poodyheads.wordpress.com)