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Canton Police Officer Cop on Video Threatens Ohio Driver to Execute Him for Stupid

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by hearit

hearit's picture
In The News

If there's a reason people don't like cops, this is it: He's the Canton Police Department officer accused of abuse--telling a driver in dashcam video that he should've pumped 10 bullets in his head. Officer Harless also says his CPD partner would be "a nice witness as I executed you because you're stupid."

Want to know why he's not fired? Perhaps it would be wise to ask the Ohio law enforcement agency.

The dashboard camera for Canton Police Department Patrolman Daniel Harless threatening 52-year-old William E. Bartlett of Brewster in the early morning of June 8, 2011. Cops claim the area is known for prostitution and drugs. That should, perhaps, mean the first thing officers would check is whether anyone on the scene of a stop is carrying a weapon. Ohio allows concealed guns with permit.

The beginning starts out with a Canton Police cruiser that blows through a stop sign in its rush to the 'scene' -- the scene of a completely parked vehicle that's at a standstill, sitting curbside Apparently cops in at least one part of Ohio see no need to abide by those laws meant to ensure safety. No, the law doesn't seem to apply to some officers.

Ohio law requires a stopped driver who carries a gun to inform the officer of its presence 'promptly'. However in certain instances, like this one, the control of the scene by a police officer is so aggressive that a gun owner doesn't necessarily have the chance to address the issue yet. In this 'patrol stop', the two Canton officers are focused on interrogating the woman and passenger of the vehicle.

The driver's basically been told to keep seated in the vehicle, and keep his mouth shut until cops get to him. Evidence of the Ohio 'stop' was captured on video via dashboard camera video mounted in the Canton Police Department cruiser.

Because the two Canton officers remained focused on only the woman outside of the car and a man who was physically inside the backseat of the vehicle, the driver hadn't t yet been questioned. Since cops weren't talking to the driver yet, he hadn't had a chance to speak with officers -- or the opportunity to inform them of the weapon for which he carried legal permit.

Canton officers decide to start searching the vehicle on June 8 -- the reason for the search, or cause, unclear. But Harless' partner is seen going through the backseat of the vehicle, his head popping up on the dashcam video. In the meantime, officers have instructed the driver not to exit the vehicle and not to talk. The driver's seen seated while one cop is searching the backseat. The problem is that cops didn't bother checking to find out whether the driver was carrying a gun, which he was -- a weapon for which he was carrying a permit.

It wasn't until four to five minutes into the 'stop' until Office Harless actually approached the seated Ohio driver for questioning. Perhaps one of the first questions -- for cops who fear for their safety -- would have been to ask the entire group, upon approach, whether anyone is carrying a weapon. It would especially seem the norm for Canton police, since Officer Harless claims on the video that he and his partner have had guns pulled on them.

But in this case, it seems Canton cops forgot to ask about weapons -- dumbly putting their own safety in danger.

It seems Officer Harless doesn't like to feel like the dumb one. Maybe he only likes to feel like the out-of-control one.

Once Canton cops find out about the gun, when the driver is trying to hand them his permit, CPD Officer Harless becomes irate. The driver, Bartlett, did tell CPD immediately about the registered weapon -- the first time he was personally addressed by Canton Officers for questioning, when Harless came to the driver's door and instructed him to open it.

Officer Harless asks Bartlett why he's exiting the vehicle with his hands up and the driver tells them it's because he has a gun and has a permit -- which he's trying to provide to Canton Officer Harless. That's when Harless flips out -- apparently realizing that he and his partner could have been killed through their stupidity. That would be stupidity Harless blames on the driver, while it seems there were two other stupid individuals on scene.

Bartlett never finishes his sentence before the officer starts screaming: The cop first starts yelling that the first thing a civilian who carrys a concealed weapon should say is to inform an officer they're carrying a gun, "right off the bat". It seems one cop had earlier told the driver to remain quiet, and had additionally asked at least one of the passengers -- while they were speaking to them -- whether one of those people was carrying a weapon. Apparently the cops forgot to ask the entire group, or the person who had been instructed by law enforcement to keep his mouth shut until spoken to.

Bartlett had apparently started to say something while the cop began searching the vehicle, near 3:09 a.m., when it sounds like he starts to say "I got...". But the driver had reportedly been told to not speak during the vehicle search.

When Harless realizes the stupidity of the officers' error -- searching a vehicle while the driver could've easily turned around and shot the officer pretty much point-blank -- the cop flips out. It seems he wants witnesses away from the scene, telling the female passenger to vacate, and threatening her with handcuffs if she does not leave the scene.

The officer turns back to the driver for a second verbal blast, reiterating his idea that the civilian should've told him about the gun earlier. Ohio's Officer Harless then takes the driver out, Earl Bartlett, of camera view -- never a good sign for a citizen -- but dash-cam video, however, is still recording audio of the conversation.

Despite the fact there's nothing obvious the driver has lied about, the officer goes on a tirade, one that includes threat after threat. He starts into the tirade again by saying "it's all f-cking lies". Harless then continues with: "Right now -- the shit you just pulled -- I could blast you right in the mouth...You're going to catch a felony on this one. That's bullshit. Understand me? It's how f-cking cops get killed."

Note the officer's wording: It's not 'how cops f-cking get killed' -- 'it's how f-cking cops get killed'. In this case, word order seems to carry significant meaning.

At one point Harless says to his partner: "I swear to God, Mark, I'm going to lose my mind if I see another one of these numbskulls."

That seems to have already been proven.

Officer Harless continues to threaten the driver who's being detained out of sight of the video camera, this time with physical and even death threats to Bartlett:

"I am so close to caving in your goddamned head. F-ck with me. You're just a stupid human being...talking to me with a goddamn gun. You want me to pull mine and stick it in your head?" says Officer Harless, "People like you don't deserve to f-cking move throughout public. Period.”

The terrifically smart Canton police officers then proceed to start searching the vehicle that no longer contains the driver -- in a search for the elusive gun permit. That would be the same permit the driver repeatedly tried to offer up to Officer Harless before the cop started in with his tirade. In fact the CPD officer had asked the driver what he had in his hand when first questioning the driver. What he had in his hand was the permit -- the piece of paper that caused Harless to start flipping out.

While cops are going back and forth verbally, and trying to find the permit, Harless says: "He said he does [have a permit]. I didn't see shit".

Perhaps comedian Chris Rock phrases it best: 'You didn't see shit, because you was doing shit'.

While the two Canton cops continue searching for the permit (apparently asking the guy who seems to be handcuffed out of view doesn't dawn on the pair as a smart idea), Officer Harless says: "F-cking assh-le sitting there looking at me -- I'm looking at a bulge. Oh, I got a permit, my ass." The second officer then pipes in with: "Not anymore!" Harless then continues: "F-cking assh-ole. Lying bastard. Sonofabitch. He's going to f-cking jail, man."

The cop tells Bartlett: "You know what I should of done? As soon as I saw your gun I shoulda taken two steps back, pulled my Glock 40 and just put 10 bullets in your ass and let you drop. And I wouldn't have lost any sleep. Do you understand me? And he [indicating the second Canton police officer with the first name of 'Mark'] would've been a nice witness as I executed you, because you're stupid.

It's good to know at least one -- or two -- Canton cops have no issue with 'execution'. That begs the question as to how many officers share that idea.

Harless is also caught on video threatening the citizen, Earl Bartlett, that he's basically going to continue to make the guy's life hell -- even into the future. Apparently one night is not enough. The Canton cop tells Earless that the CPD officer will continue to pull him over and have his car towed every time the officer sees it.

Officer Harless of the Canton Police Department cop has been put on administrative leave -- but not fired.

Unbelievably, the Ohio driver who stayed mellow and cooperative throughout having his life repeatedly threatened, is being prosecuted by the Canton police for failing to tell the police officer -- who told the civilian he'd put a bullet through his head and not have a problem with it -- about the legally-owned weapon

Gun advocates say the Ohio law need to be changed, so police officers have a responsibility to ask drivers if they have any guns -- and not be prosecuting citizens.

CPD Police Chief Dean McKimm says Officer Harless’ behavior is “wholly unacceptable” and violates multiple department rules. But, gee, it seems that "wholly unacceptable" behavior isn't really entire -- or the police department would've canned Harless for the abuse.

While Internal Affairs investigates, Officer Harless had been placed on paid administrative leave since June 20. It's unclear why a man on the verge of snapping would've been allowed to carry a concealed firearm himself -- for another 2 weeks following the June 8 incident. Recently, the CPD officer recently went on sick leave.

The Canton Police Department (CPD) in Ohio has temporarily shut down its Facebook page -- after the 'nature' of comments posted about the police video. It seems the police department who hires officers that have no problem issuing comments themselves doesn't want to hear anyone else's.

The reasons for the Facebook shutdown by the Canton Police Department are a bit unclear. Supposedly the Canton Police Department doesn't have enough staff to monitor the Facebook page over weekend. But that's kind of strange since the page has been active on weekends, up and running. CPD says its started the Facebook page recently -- but now the claim is that there are 'no' value in the some of the comments posted.

The Canton PD Facebook page was shut down after a cop who supervises the page brought 'the issue' to the police chief's attention. It's still a little hazy as to what that 'issue' is: Cops will only say "I really couldn’t characterize it for you," or what specifically the Facebook comments were about the police video.

It seems the belief is 'when you can't control something, shut it down'. Canton Police Chief Dean McKimm claims the police department's Facebook page was pulled because “We wanted to stay professional."

It seems to be a little late for that.

"The [Canton Police Department] Facebook page will not be active “until this thing runs its course,” says Police Chief McKimm.

That damn 'thing'. Those 'things' seem to arise when police abuse does -- funny how that seems to coincide.

At the close of last week the Canton City Council had received about 30 emails over the video depicting what clearly seems to be police abuse -- including an e-mail titled: “Canton, Ohio, disgusts me.” Another e-mail says “If you let this ‘cop’ [Officer Harless] walk the streets one more day ... Then you’re clearly a psychopath." And yet another e-mail questionswhen Canton City Council will be demanding the arrest and investigation of CPD's Officer Harless.

That seems to be a very fair question.

Officer Harless' partner by the name of 'Mark' doesn't seem to have lost his job even temporarily over the abuse scandal -- despite the fact he did nothing to stop his partner's actions. It's all a bit interesting, considering his listened to his partner threaten a citizen that also included him -- as a potential 'witness' to the citizens' 'execution' for being stupid.

Oh, but that's right: Canton's just waiting "until this thing runs its course."


Canton Police Department (CPD)
221 3rd St SW
Canton, OH 44702
United States
Phone: (330) 649-5800
40° 47' 50.0748" N, 81° 22' 34.842" W
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