Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Maybe Sharpton wanted to catch up to a Burger King truck

Don Luskin noted this story in his blog and was kind enough to give me a hat tip. This is for those of you who don't read his blog (you should!) and otherwise missed it:
REV. AL'S WILD RIDE IN 110-MPH COP CHASE

August 30, 2005 -- The Rev. Al Sharpton was in such a hurry to get out of President Bush's neighborhood that his driver blew past a deputy sheriff at 110 mph and then led troopers on a nine-mile Texas chase before pulling over, authorities said.

Jarrett Barton Maupin, 43, of Phoenix, was arrested Sunday and charged with evading arrest, a felony, and reckless driving, a misdemeanor, according to Lt. Danny Williams, a spokesman for the Ellis County Sheriff's Office. He's free on $1,000 bail.

Williams said Maupin was clocked at 110 mph in a 65-mph zone on Interstate 35 about 40 miles south of Dallas after leaving activist Cindy Sheehan's peace rally near Bush's Crawford ranch.

Maupin then evaded the deputy sheriffs' efforts to get him to pull over, Williams said.

"The reason he was arrested is that he was weaving in and out of traffic," Williams said. "They couldn't get him to slow down, so we radioed ahead to the state highway patrol.

"They eventually got a car on either side of him, and that's when he finally pulled over."


Williams added that the Lincoln Town Car was impounded at the rental agency's request.

Maupin told the troopers he was hurrying to get Sharpton and two other passengers to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport. Sharpton told The Post yesterday there was no chase and steered the conversation away from Maupin's arrest and toward the deputies' handling of the situation.

"If there really was a chase, how come the police didn't question me or anyone else in the car?" Sharpton asked. "How do you arrest the driver and not question the other people?"

Another spokesman for the sheriff's office said Sharpton and the others were not arrested or questioned because Maupin was "in care, custody and control of the vehicle."


Sharpton said Maupin does not work for him but was a "volunteer" at the anti-war rally.

Sharpton attended the rally with Sheehan, who is the mother of a fallen soldier and has been leading a peace vigil near the Crawford ranch to demand that Bush immediately withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq.

"We had a great rally," Sharpton said. "And all I know is that after the rally, there were several volunteers, and one offered to drive us to the airport."

After Maupin was arrested, Sharpton said he took his bags out of the car and transferred them to another car in the motorcade that was also heading to the airport.

"When I left, [Maupin and the troopers] were still on the side of the road," Sharpton said. "Why would they let me leave the scene if we had been evading arrest? They didn't want to search the car or anything."

When asked if Maupin had been speeding, Sharpton merely said, "I don't know."
I'm surprised Sharpton didn't accuse the troopers of being racist. Does he just not get it, or does he like to ask stupid questions? A DA would have great difficulty proving that the passengers were also resisting arrest: all they'd have to do is claim they were along for the ride.

I wonder if Sharpton wanted to be arrested so he could turn this into another race-baiting issue. Were he charged with resisting arrest, the prosecutor would have to drop the charges from lack of evidence. Then Sharpton could claim vindication from "racist" law enforcement. Too bad for his demagoguery that the police know what they can and can't prove.

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