Wounding Rachel Silva & Son, Officer Frank White Is Still Free – Which Shows That There Is a Two-Tiered Justice System: One for Cops and the Other for the Rest of Us
By Joe Frustrated.
SAN DIEGO, CA. Today, Rachel Silva told her side of the story. With Gene Iredale, her lawyer, by her side, Ms. Silva explained that she has no memory of what happened on March 15th before she ended up in Oceanside parking lot with Officer Frank White. But apparently, after some kind of traffic altercation, she did. An off-duty San Diego Police Officer, White, fired five rounds into her car, with her and her 8 year old son sitting in the front. The shots came through the window, wounding her in her right arm, and wounding her son in his left thigh. She was unarmed. Silva underwent surgery on her arm and wears a sling, unable to raise her arm high.
Officer White has been suspended with pay. Yet, Silva’s attorney, Iredale stated that Officer White was in some kind of “crazy rage,” when he fired his gun. Anyone else, explained Mr. Iredale, if they had shot a gun 5 times at an unarmed woman and a small child, would be telling their side of the story from jail. Anyone else would have been charged with attempted murder.
But Officer White, who has not made a public statement on the matter, is free. During an investigation by the Oceanside police, White showed up for his interview with his attorney, a police department counselor, his supervisor and the Police Chief was given a special, private briefing. Police forced the young boy, still in his hospital bed, to give an interview to police without his parents’ consent.
Ms. Silva had a toxicology test done on her that night, but Officer White was not given any test. Ms. Silva, admittedly has had a substance abuse problem, had a couple DUIs and was driving on a suspended license the night of the incident.
Lawyer Fears for Lack of Fair Investigation
Iredale said he feared that there would not be a fair-minded investigation. On behalf of his client, Iredale has filed a claim with the City of San Diego regarding Silva’s complaints. The Claim asserts that Ms. Silva’s Constitutional rights were violated, and that White was acting under the color of law when he used his police weapon. The following is taken verbatim from the claim:
This claim is made on behalf of Rachel Leann Silva. It seeks recompense for physical, psychological and economic damages, including hospital and medical costs. The claim is made necessary because Franklin White, a San Diego Police Officer, shot and attempted to kill Rachel Leann Silva and her son Johnny, age 8, in Oceanside, California on or about March 15, 2008.
This incident occurred in the parking lot of a shopping center at 155 Old Grove Road, in Oceanside, California. As a result of a traffic dispute, Ms. Silva and Officer Franklin White exchanged words. White became enraged and shot five times at the car driven by Ms. Silva. He shot her two times in the arm, with one of the bullets shattering the bone in her upper right arm. He shot at Johnny Silva, who was seated in the front passenger seat, with the shot striking Johnny in his leg. Ms. Silva was unarmed and represented no threat to White. White announced that he was a San Diego Police Officer during the incident and ordered Ms. Silva to turn off her engine at the place to which she had backed up her car in an effort to avoid being shot. Ms. Silva was calling 911 at the time and repeatedly said that she could not turn off the car because her arm was shattered. Ms. Silva lapsed in and out of consciousness over the next half-hour and was ultimately transported via helicopter to Sharpe Memorial Hospital, where she was treated for her wounds for several days.
In a statement in the Claim on how the City of San Diego and its employees were at fault, the claim states:
White’s supervisor, a “peer counselor” from the Police Department and a police attorney reportedly accompanied White to his post-shooting interview by the Oceanside Police Department. The presence and intervention of these Police Department personnel can plausibly be viewed as an attempt to influence the Oceanside Police Department and to protect White from responsibility for his dangerous actions.
The Claim also alleged that the City was responsible for failing to properly screen and hire, and failure to properly train, failure to supervise and discipline, and for giving “post-facto provision of material support to White.” “The provision of a weapon to Mr. White, coupled with a faulty and inadequate policy regarding off-duty conduct by police officers, resulted in harm to Ms. Silva.”
Bottom line: this officer Frank White is walking around, suspended, yes, but with pay. He should be jailed and charged with attempted murder. Every day that he is free signals to the rest of us: THERE IS A TWO TIERED LEGAL SYSTEM – ONE FOR THE COPS AND ONE FOR THE REST OF US.