August 21, 2014


Sunil Dutta, a 17-year veteran of the Los Angeles Police Department and professor of homeland security at Colorado Tech University, has a suggestion for victims of police violence searching for someone to blame: Look in the mirror.

In a column published Tuesday in The Washington Post titled, "I’m a cop. If you don’t want to get hurt, don’t challenge me," Dutta responds to mounting criticism of the policing tactics on display in Ferguson, Missouri, amid the hyper-militarization of law enforcement and accusations that officers have violated the First Amendment rights of both demonstrators and journalists covering the events. In a particularly telling passage, Dutta argues that citizens could deter police brutality if they were simply more cooperative, even when they're unjustly targeted.