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Old October 5th, 2006, 05:10 PM   #1
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Default Man Sues Secret Service Agent Over Arrest After Approaching Cheney and Denouncing War

Man Sues Secret Service Agent Over Arrest After Approaching Cheney and Denouncing War
By KIRK JOHNSON

DENVER, Oct. 3 — A Colorado man who was arrested in June on harassment charges after he approached Vice President Dick Cheney to denounce the war in Iraq filed a federal lawsuit on Tuesday accusing a Secret Service agent of civil rights violations.

In his suit, filed in Federal District Court in Denver, the man, Steven Howards, an environmental consultant who lives in Golden, Colo., says he stepped up to the vice president to speak his mind in a public place and found himself in handcuffs — in violation, the suit says, of the Constitution’s language about free speech and illegal search and seizure.

The suit seeks no specific damages, and names only one agent, Virgil D. Reichle Jr., who is assigned to the Denver office of the Secret Service. But Mr. Howards’s lawyer, David A. Lane, said Mr. Cheney might be called as a witness, along with the district attorney in Eagle County who threw out the criminal case against Mr. Howards. If a chain of command within the Secret Service is found that suggests Mr. Reichle was acting on orders, Mr. Lane said, more defendants could be named.

A call to Agent Reichle was not returned. A spokeswoman for Mr. Cheney referred questions on the matter to the Secret Service. The agent in charge of the Denver office, Lon Garner, declined to comment.

Mr. Howards, 54, said at a news conference here that he was taking his 8-year-old son to a piano lesson on June 16 at the Beaver Creek Resort about two hours west of Denver when he saw Mr. Cheney at an outdoor mall. Mr. Howards said he approached within two feet of Mr. Cheney and said in a calm voice, “I think your policies in Iraq are reprehensible,” or as the lawsuit itself describes the encounter, “words to that effect.”

Mr. Howards said he then went on his way. About 10 minutes later, he said, he was walking back through the area when Agent Reichle handcuffed him and said he would be charged with assaulting the vice president. Local police officers, acting on information from the Secret Service, according to the suit, ultimately filed misdemeanor harassment charges that could have resulted in up to a year in jail.

A June 16 article in The Vail Daily quoted a spokesman for the Secret Service, Eric Zahren, as saying that Mr. Howards “wasn’t acting like other folks in the area,” and that he became “argumentative and combative” when agents tried to question him. Mr. Howards said Tuesday that he was never threatening and did not become upset until his arrest.

“This was not about anything I did — this is about what I said,” he said.

Mr. Zahren declined to comment on the suit or on his original description of the event.

Mr. Howards said he was released on $500 bond after about three hours in jail. A state judge dismissed the charge about three weeks later at the request of the Eagle County district attorney, Mark Hurlbert.

“It was our understanding that the vice president did not want to prosecute,” Mr. Hurlbert said in a telephone interview. “The original indication was that he had pushed the vice president. Later it looked to be that he had just spoken to him.”

Mr. Hurlbert said the initial information on the incident came from the Secret Service agents at Beaver Creek. A later communication from Mr. Cheney’s office or the Secret Service — Mr. Hurlbert said he did not remember which — said the government wanted to drop the matter.

The suit joins two others — in West Virginia and another in Denver — charging that Secret Service agents or White House staff members violated the law in keeping people with opposing political views away from President Bush or Mr. Cheney.

In the other Colorado suit, two people said they were ejected from a taxpayer-financed appearance by Mr. Bush in Denver in March 2005 because of an antiwar bumper sticker. The case is awaiting a ruling from the judge on a motion by the government to dismiss the case.

In the West Virginia case, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit on behalf of Jeff and Nicole Rank, who said they were arrested on July 4, 2004, at an appearance by Mr. Bush in Charleston. The Ranks had proper tickets but were wearing anti-Bush T-shirts, the suit says. The government has an Oct. 10 deadline to respond to the suit, said Chris Hansen, a senior staff counsel at the A.C.L.U. in New York.

Mr. Howards said that he had had no intent to test the limits of free speech when he approached Mr. Cheney, but that the government’s actions in the aftermath only deepened his convictions and opposition.

“This administration has a history of intimidating folks,” he said


http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/04/wa...in&oref=slogin


Probably should lock him up and throw away the key , huh, FORD FLARESIDE?
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Old October 5th, 2006, 05:26 PM   #2
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big surprise cops or agents dotn like being dissed. I know 20 cases where people were treated like shit for not bending over backwards for a cop. My old roomate from WMU was arrested for "inciting a riot" for simply telling another buddy he didnt have to submit to a breathalizer on the spot. My brother same thing, he was arrested for telling his buddy not to submit to a breathalizer and that he could make the police call his personal doctor and have his physican draw blood or give breathalizer.LOL how the hell do they justify arresting you for knowing the law ???? Anothertime My bro was given the shakedown by police who wanted $400 bond for his buddy last year, my bro paided cash and the police REFUSED to give him a receipt. When he insisted he get a receipt they almost arrested him untill he relented (we suspect they were doctoring the books and keep the difference).

My point? the system atleast worked for this guy .......and his charges were droped .... had dick cheney not been the key figure it would not have made the news. I think a good 10-15% of cops are total dicks and a SS agent being so highprofile i can see their head swelling even more than your local average cop. You can get arrested for looking like a known wanted man ... ME I TRY TO AVOID COPS AND TROUBLE, not to tick them off and test the limits. Guess i am wiser than that old dude who got arrested :tonka:

Last edited by jamiesann; October 5th, 2006 at 05:42 PM.
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Old October 8th, 2006, 04:46 PM   #3
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he deserved to be arrested if your gunna have a dif. veiw point keep it to yourself. your suppose to support your leaders any ways. so i hope while that guy was in jail he met bubba
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Old October 8th, 2006, 05:04 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by bellmer
he deserved to be arrested if your gunna have a dif. veiw point keep it to yourself. your suppose to support your leaders any ways. so i hope while that guy was in jail he met bubba
are you serious? .. now im not saying what this guy was right, (im not sure but it sounds like his 8yr old son was there and i don't think children should be given this type of example) but this goes against everything about this country and freedom of speech ..
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Old October 8th, 2006, 05:10 PM   #5
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are you serious? .. now im not saying what this guy was right, (im not sure but it sounds like his 8yr old son was there and i don't think children should be given this type of example) but this goes against everything about this country and freedom of speech ..

i agree but this country was also founded on the bible so shit changes. you dont go up to one of the leaders of the country and start tellen them they are stupid. your suppose to respect people of higher athority.
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Old October 8th, 2006, 05:39 PM   #6
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i agree but this country was also founded on the bible so shit changes. you dont go up to one of the leaders of the country and start tellen them they are stupid. your suppose to respect people of higher athority.
Bullshit. I respect those who have earned my respect. President Dickhead and his sidekick limpdick have not earned that respect. This country was founded on the idea of being able to have a dissenting opinion, not falling in line just because some elected official has a stick up his ass. That is what is wrong with this world today. Nobody has the balls to think for themselves, form an intellignent opinion, and stand behind it.
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Old October 8th, 2006, 07:01 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by 84Scrambler
Nobody has the balls to think for themselves, form an intellignent opinion, and stand behind it.
Did you father a child that goes to school at CMU(jeeper)? Also, if you are going to talk about an intelligent opinion, at least spell it right.

And come on! Do you really think we can tolerate people getting in the faces of our top politicians with the history of assassination and violence in this country. There is the safety factor here and an example needs to be set. If you just politely make him leave, what kind of message do you send to others?
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Old October 8th, 2006, 07:44 PM   #8
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Did you father a child that goes to school at CMU(jeeper)? Also, if you are going to talk about an intelligent opinion, at least spell it right.

And come on! Do you really think we can tolerate people getting in the faces of our top politicians with the history of assassination and violence in this country. There is the safety factor here and an example needs to be set. If you just politely make him leave, what kind of message do you send to others?
Excuse me for hitting the wrong key once. With the history of assassination and violence, what the fukc was the Secret Service doing letting anyone even get close enough to PEACEFULLY express their dissenting view? Sometimes I wonder why I even bother reading this website.
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Old October 8th, 2006, 08:14 PM   #9
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I just dont understand how he can expect to get money for being arrested?

He was not convicted and its a better safe than sorry situation.

You still have your first amendment rights, no one came to this guys house in the middle of his night and killed his family for having a different opinion. Heck no one informed on him he didnt go to a consentration camp for slave labor or get tortured. He still has his first amendment rights. He could have said what ever he wanted to his son or a stranger 100 yards away and nothign would have happened. It was the getting in the face part that got him arrested. Simple as that. AND HE WASNT CONVICTED OF ANYTHING THIS DOESNT DESERVE TO BE IN THE NEWS

Just get up in a regular joe cops face yelling and telling he is wrong and see if you get arrested. I give you about a 50/50 shot of sleeping in the slammer that night. The courts have held up limited free speach, you arent aloud to say ANYTHING. You cand defame or slander someone, cant yell fire in a crowded movie theather etc. The courts have held up limited free speach to the WBC soldier protestors. They are allowed to protest, just not at the funeral in all states now i think .... or having to get a permit for your rallye or protest has been upheld also. This guy and his kid aint special no matter how much the media hates dick cheney.

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Old October 8th, 2006, 08:19 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jamiesann
I just dont understand how he can expect to get money for being arrested?

He was not convicted and its a better safe than sorry situation.

You still have your first amendment rights, no one came to this guys house in the middle of his night and killed his family for having a different opinion. Heck no one informed on him he didnt go to a consentration camp for slave labor or get tortured. He still has his first amendment rights. He could have said what ever he wanted to his son or a stranger 100 yards away and nothign would have happened. It was the getting in the face part that got him arrested. Simple as that. AND HE WASNT CONVICTED OF ANYTHING THIS DOESNT DESERVE TO BE IN THE NEWS
than why arrest him and incarcerate him and make him pay a 500$ bail? wrongful imprisonment would be one reason to sue the governement.

(again i want to emphasize i do not think what the guy did is right, but i also do believe heavily in our freedoms and that they are taken away by more and more legislation every day and not one of the officials that run for office nor are elected try to save those freedoms) ..
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Old October 8th, 2006, 08:19 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by jamiesann
I just dont understand how he can expect to get money for being arrested?

He was not convicted and its a better safe than sorry situation.

You still have your first amendment rights, no one came to this guys house in the middle of his night and killed his family for having a different opinion. Heck no one informed on him he didnt go to a consentration camp for slave labor or get tortured. He still has his first amendment rights. He could have said what ever he wanted to his son or a stranger 100 yards away and nothign would have happened. It was the getting in the face part that got him arrested. Simple as that. AND HE WASNT CONVICTED OF ANYTHING THIS DOESNT DESERVE TO BE IN THE NEWS
Yeah!!! What he said!
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Old October 8th, 2006, 08:23 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by 84Scrambler
Excuse me for hitting the wrong key once. With the history of assassination and violence, what the fukc was the Secret Service doing letting anyone even get close enough to PEACEFULLY express their dissenting view? Sometimes I wonder why I even bother reading this website.

cause im sure he was so peaceful enogh to politely say excuse me sir i dont agree w/ the war and its over.
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Old October 8th, 2006, 09:13 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by nyxis
than why arrest him and incarcerate him and make him pay a 500$ bail? wrongful imprisonment would be one reason to sue the governement.

(again i want to emphasize i do not think what the guy did is right, but i also do believe heavily in our freedoms and that they are taken away by more and more legislation every day and not one of the officials that run for office nor are elected try to save those freedoms) ..
i believe in our freedoms also ... i also belive in not making trouble when you dont need it or cant afford it (sure get arrested if you want to make a statement not if money is tight and you need to be to work in 12 hours). I believe in knowing the rules and the law, and unless you are a lawyer dont go out of your way to TEST THE LIMITS. He wasnt arrested for calling cheney a dick at the local pub and yelling at tv like you would be in stalin russia, or mao'ist china. He can do that every day from now till he dies. Anyone can be arrested and held for 2 days, if they arent charged you have to let them go. You can detain anyone for a period. My hunch. He seemed unstable as most people dont go yelling at leaders like that. Arrest him, and when cheney was out of that dudes area out of that mall, town etc. Let him go.

Its VERY serious. Did you guys know if someone makes even a joking comment about hurting the president the secrect service find out they will come to your house, maybe arrest you, and you will be on a list for the rest of your life, and every time the president comes to say detroit, you will have to be accounted for and i think they have an agent actually follow you until the president is out of town. What was this jack ass dad doing ? Trying to look like a tough guy in front of his kid ? :tonka: The secrect service doesnt mess around, even middle school kids have gotten introuble for making threats about the president .... in a known joke. You just dotn joke about it.

Last edited by jamiesann; October 8th, 2006 at 09:24 PM.
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Old October 8th, 2006, 09:24 PM   #14
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Same folks would be bitching if on the news they showed this guy yelling then pulling out a 45 and blasting cheney. They would say well look at him yelling he was trouble , why didnt they do something. SS first duty is to protect president and vice president and their families. Everything else is second, they dont want to say ohh hindsight is 20/20 i guess i should have seen it. Don't ruffle feather, dont make waves, and get out of everyones way if your smart.
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Old October 8th, 2006, 09:30 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by jamiesann
Same folks would be bitching if on the news they showed this guy yelling then pulling out a 45 and blasting cheney. They would say well look at him yelling he was trouble , why didnt they do something. SS first duty is to protect president and vice president and their families. Everything else is second, they dont want to say ohh hindsight is 20/20 i guess i should have seen it. Don't ruffle feather, dont make waves, and get out of everyones way if your smart.
no.. i wouldnt.. i dont think politicians do much in positive work for citizens.. their goal is simple.. to get elected and line their pockets as much as possible from either the private sector or the unofficial bribes..
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Old October 9th, 2006, 10:35 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by bellmer
he deserved to be arrested if your gunna have a dif. veiw point keep it to yourself. your suppose to support your leaders any ways. so i hope while that guy was in jail he met bubba

hahahaha, this guy is a joke. He has to be. Please, tell me this is a joke.
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Old October 9th, 2006, 10:41 AM   #17
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I understand where it's coming from.... but does the term "Limited Freedom of Speech" make anyone else nervous as hell?
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Old October 9th, 2006, 03:35 PM   #18
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He seemed unstable as most people dont go yelling at leaders like that.

Mr. Howards, 54, said at a news conference here that he was taking his 8-year-old son to a piano lesson on June 16 at the Beaver Creek Resort about two hours west of Denver when he saw Mr. Cheney at an outdoor mall. Mr. Howards said he approached within two feet of Mr. Cheney and said in a calm voice, “I think your policies in Iraq are reprehensible,” or as the lawsuit itself describes the encounter, “words to that effect.”
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Old October 9th, 2006, 03:52 PM   #19
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Mr. Howards, 54, said at a news conference here that he was taking his 8-year-old son to a piano lesson on June 16 at the Beaver Creek Resort about two hours west of Denver when he saw Mr. Cheney at an outdoor mall. Mr. Howards said he approached within two feet of Mr. Cheney and said in a calm voice, “I think your policies in Iraq are reprehensible,” or as the lawsuit itself describes the encounter, “words to that effect.”

So um you really don't know what he said at all??? and I am sure he would NEVER lie.... :miff: Follow along sheep.. follow along..
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Old October 9th, 2006, 04:25 PM   #20
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So um you really don't know what he said at all??? and I am sure he would NEVER lie.... :miff: Follow along sheep.. follow along..
well going by the article instead of just making up what you think could have happend is generally my policy. Sheep ! BAAAAAAAAAAAHH.
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