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African American Doctor Demands Firing Of 8 Anniston Police

with 47 comments

Dr. Stacy Branch, DVM

Dr. Stacy Branch, DVM

TPV News Staff
Anniston, Alabama
Editor’s Note:  Listen to a live radio interview with Ralph Bradford of Anniston, Alabama as he interviews  Dr. Branch about this issue by going here:  Blog Talk Radio.

Dr. Stacy Matthews Branch, a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (and board certified in Forensic Medicine), Toxicologist, and Published Biomedical Researcher who now lives in Mexico, has filed an exhaustive complaint with the United States Justice Department, The Alabama Attorney General, and The City Of Anniston, against 8 Anniston Police Officers accusing them of racial profiling, illegal search and seizure, false arrest and other malicious acts.Joining Branch in calling for the dismissal of the 8 officers are The People’s Voice, an East Alabama black newspaper publication, Anniston Businessman and Activist, Ralph Bradford, and David Baker, another Anniston Activist who is CEO and Founder of Community Against Pollution (CAP).

Branch’s complaint – which includes her 15-page narrative of the episode — asks that immediate disciplinary action be taken against the 8 officers, up to and including termination.  Included in the complaint is Branch’s detailed statement describing a traffic stop, which she says, traumatized her and her husband beyond belief and has cost her a whole year of her life.

On April 25 of 2007, while traveling through Anniston on I-20, Branch and her husband (then fiancé), Victoriano Martinez, who is Mexican, were stopped by two Anniston police officers because they “touched the white line.”   In her complaint, Branch alleges the two officers used this as a pretext for the stop.  But, after two more officers joined them, the police detained and excessively questioned the couple on the side of the highway for hours.  Dr. Branch, who was en route to a medical conference in Texas, had research specimens in her vehicle, along with other items used in her veterinary practice.  She also had her personal prescription medications, which included the hormone, progesterone.  During questioning, Dr. Branch offered to produce her Veterinary license, as well as her DEA license, which expressly exempts her from charges for illegal possession of prescription drugs.  Officers declined her offer to show them her licenses, which they later saw anyway during the searches.   Eventually joined by 4 more officers (presumably from Drug Enforcement), and a drug dog, the determined officers persisted in their relentless pursuit to find illegal substances in the couple’s possession. 

“They asked us all kinds of personal questions that were irrelevant to the alleged traffic violation, and that were none of their business: Where are you going? Where are you coming from? Where do you live?  What do you do? What color did you paint your house?”  Branch stated that the officers attempted to “quiz” her about her chemical compounds.  Determined to make them be illegal substances, the officers tested and re-tested the solutions, then angered by the negative results, threw the test packets, out on the shoulder of the road.   After all their searching the only thing they found was Dr. Branch’s prescription medication, and despite her having the written prescriptions in her possession, they still charged her with “illegal possession of prescription drugs”, (her progesterone prescription). Dr. Branch and her husband, were placed under arrest and taken to the Anniston City Jail, where they were held for hours.  Branch was finally allowed to make bond, but Victoriano Martinez was held overnight.

“As if all this wasn’t enough, after we bonded out of jail, and continued our trip, we started having engine trouble ¾ only to discover ¾ these officers had gone under the hood of the truck, dismantled the air filter, emptied the radiator of all it’s fluid and drained all the motor oil out of the vehicle.  There was no reason for this!  This was clearly an act of malice!” Branch told Ralph Bradford on “African Americans Talking,” a Sunday morning radio show that airs on WHOG in Anniston.

Though all charges against Branch and her husband were dismissed on May 30, and July 13, 2007, Branch comments “How can any individual be expected to overcome this kind of treatment?  To have your rights and your human dignity, violated out there on the highway where you have no recourse, and no choice but to lie there and allow yourself to be stripped of your constitutional rights, is like being raped… Only ten times worse…”

“My concern is how many other African Americans who didn’t have the means to fight, have had this kind of thing happen.  Undeniably, if these totally unfounded charges had been allowed to stick, my entire medical career could have been ruined — all my life, my years of struggle to educate and make something of myself, would have been obliterated.”

Dr. Branch, along with several advocates, including The People’s Voice Weekly News, a black publication who assisted Branch in reaching out to the Anniston community, Ralph Bradford an Anniston business owner and radio talk show host, who interviewed Branch via telephone, on his Sunday Morning Radio Program, African Americans Talking, and David Baker, CEO of the Anniston based organization, Community Against Pollution (CAP), are demanding disciplinary action against the officers, and have asked to meet with Anniston authorities sometime in July, when Branch returns to the U.S. from Mexico.

Advocates for Branch say they believe that she is owed a public apology by The City of Anniston, as well as restitution for the emotional and financial trauma they suffered while traveling through Anniston at the hands of these reckless and undisciplined police officers.
__________________________________________________________________________________________________
Editor’s Notes:  Dr. Branch is cited numerous times on the internet, relative to research that she has been involved in:  Some links appear below:

1. FRONTIERS IN BIOSCIENCE
2. 1995 – Dr. Branch joined the faculty of the Department of Environmental & Molecular Toxicology
3. National Academic Press, Dr. Branch is mentioned regarding her bio-medical research
4. Some of Dr. Branch’s Research is summarized on this site

5. Below are links to some of Dr. Branch’s Published Research Studies on Mice, published at PUBMED.GOV

    listed by article title.

  

THE EFFECTS OF 5-AZA-2′-DEOXYCYTIDINE (D-AZA) ON SONIC HEDGEHOG EXPRESSION IN MOUSE EMBRYONIC LIMB BUDS

 

Transplacental exposure to the DNA demethylating agent, 5-AZA-CdR, affects the sexual behavior of CD-1 male mice.

 

Chemically induced supernumerary lumbar ribs in CD-1 mice: size distribution and dose response.

 

Infectious dermatitis in a ball python (Python regius) colony.

 

Differentially expressed genes associated with 5-Aza-2′-deoxycytidine-induced hindlimb defects in the Swiss Webster mouse.

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Written by peoplesvoiceweekly

July 18, 2008 at 11:39 am

47 Responses

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  1. Incidents such as this one that happened with Dr. Branch I am sure happens more often then we hear of. I am glad she made the decision to fight back. We need to rally around her with our support.

    Stephanie

    July 19, 2008 at 1:36 am

  2. Dear Ms. Allen: I am extremely glad to see your comment on this issue. If you would like to help Dr. Branch, send the link to this article to everybody on your email list. This situation needs to be exposed, so that black people around East Alabama will know they need to demand that these kinds of incidents END.. once and for all!

  3. It appears that Dr. Branch and her fiance were the victims of a terriorist attack. I hope these officers will be found guilty and should serve time for such a “crime.” This will send a message to the terrorists “officers in uniform” who live among us.

    Councilman Almond

    July 19, 2008 at 11:54 pm

  4. I really am getting tired of these hater of human life, just becuase we aren’t the right color for them. Being in law enforcement while I was in New York City, they disgrace the uniform, and what they suppose to represent. I must say this, where is the Reverend Al Sharpton and Reverwend Jesse Jackson? It is beginning to come to mind, that there isn’t no spot light, so they won’t show up. We can’t allow this to go on, and as I speak, I am in the planning stage to begin change.

    Rev. W.R. Luchie

    July 20, 2008 at 12:38 am

  5. I would advice Dr. Branch and her husband to file a suit with the ACLU in Montgomery, Al. Do it quickly as time is running out. This is the type of empowerment given by the dark side when a certain administration came into office. It has been a different world since 2000. God bless you and may you win. Blessings.

    P. A.

    July 20, 2008 at 9:56 pm

  6. [...] visit the Peoples Voice Weekly for more links and information. SHARETHIS.addEntry({ title: “African American Doctor Demands [...]

  7. I want to express appreciation for this wonderful support. It is very heartening to know that there are still people who understand and respect the value of human rights and are dedicated to protecting them. I am thankful to Ms. Clark-Frieson and the People’s Voice Weekly for this forum, the publication and the selfless support concerning this issue.

    Dr. Stacy Branch

    July 21, 2008 at 5:02 am

  8. as we see now the rights of all citizens are at risk. no one is safe from internal terrorist. they don’t have to come from a foreign country they are living right here.

    ware,g

    July 21, 2008 at 4:00 pm

  9. 43 years since Dr. King. It’s time. Who is willing to stand?

    t springer

    July 21, 2008 at 6:52 pm

  10. [...] visit the Peoples Voice Weekly for more links and [...]

  11. Charlotte: This is too pathetic to even seem real in the 21st century. It makes it clear that Alabamians are still in the inhumane hands of the KKK; that evil is harder to kill than Satan himself. And, of course, with all the unfathomable evil Karl Rove directed his Alabama cohorts to bring down on a WHITE MAN (Governor Siegleman), I have come to know that Alabama is far more drenched in hatred and meaness than can be imagined by normal people. Riley and his cohorts have become little more than living breathing demon soldiers who thive off the blood sweat and tears of the very poor and ignorant. One should not lose hope and keep fighteng throug the courts; yet; on this journey, I have come to know that sometimes things get too big, too widespread, too out-of-control, for a human solution. Only divine intervention can solve some problems.

    Jacqui

    July 22, 2008 at 7:26 pm

  12. More people ought to complain when they are treated in this manner, and legal action should be taken against any violation of civil rights committed by law enforcement. This goes unreported more times than rape! Again, more people need to make formal complaints, contact advocacy groups such as NAACP, ACLU, and anyone who will take their case.

    Dot

    August 3, 2008 at 7:47 pm

  13. I am a long time friend of Dr. Branch and have met her husband Victor on several occasions. She is a brilliant doctor and a wonderful law abiding person who has strived and worked hard all of her life. I was appalled when she told me this happened.
    It is also shameful that in this day and age these acts still occur. At a time when we stand to possibly elect our first black president this accident just goes to illustrate that we still have a long way to go. Things have got to change. Stacy, good luck in your fight. I’m behind you.

    Leslie

    August 3, 2008 at 10:14 pm

  14. To all those who were interested enough to comment on this particular article, the real issue now, has become — nobody in the civil rights community seems to have the willingness or the BACKBONE, to raise the appropriate issues over this situation. The NAACP is quiet as a church mouse. Luchie is right about one thing. Where is Reverend Jesse Jackson and Reverend Al Sharpton now?? These are the issues they ought to be raising. Why is the Alabama NAACP not responding? Why have they not even ventured to investigate the issue. I’m literally ashamed for anybody to even know that I was ever a part of the NAACP.

    peoplesvoiceweekly

    August 5, 2008 at 4:01 am

  15. If this is how everything happened, then it should be addressed properly. If not, you are wanting 8 officers fired from a dept that is already in need of officers, losing 8 could very well be devastating to the city. I am sorry, but I really don’t think it is a bad as you are making it out to be. It sounds more to me that you are looking for free publicity and easy money from the city of Anniston. That is pretty dispicable in itself. For you to even compare your car being searched, and you being questioned to being raped is absolutely disgusting. I am completely appolled and extremely offended by that comparison. You should be ashamed of yourself for that..no excuse. For the reader who referred to these officers as terrorist..please..you sound obsurd. They are hard working, under paid, AMERICANS, trying to do a job most people would not have. I do not see anyone here running out to enroll in the police academy. After what happened to our wonderful country on 9-11, you should be feeling like an idiot to make such a statement. They may be wrong for what they have done, or the way they handled this situation, but to compare them to terrorist…that is ridiculous…..and extremely upsetting to hear you make such a statement. I do apologize if I offened anyone, that was not my intent, this was just very upsetting to me to hear these kind of comparisons. Those two subjects do make me very emotional.

    bobbi

    August 12, 2008 at 5:11 am

  16. Bobbi: You obviously are not African American, and do not relate at all to the historical mistreatment of blacks by our nation’s police. And if you ARE African, American, it appears that you may need a refresher on your black history, or perhaps you need to read about such incidents as Rodney King, an African-American taxi driver who, in 1991, was stopped and then beaten by Los Angeles Police Department officers (Laurence Powell, Timothy Wind, Theodore Briseno and Sergeant Stacey Koon) after being chased for speeding; or Abner Louima, a Haïtian immigrant who was assaulted and brutalized by New York City police officers after being arrested outside a Brooklyn nightclub in 1997; or Dr. Mae Jemison, the first Black woman in space, who filed a complaint against a White Texas police officer accusing him of police brutality during a traffic stop that ended in her arrest. Dr. Jemison stated that the police officer physically and emotionally mistreated her. Do you think she lied … or exaggerated about her allegations?

    What would you call it OTHER THAN RAPE, when a person’s constitutional rights are blatently violated in this way?

    If you have better terminology, please, by all means, I encourage you to put it out there, so we all can see it.

    I encourage you to read your black history before you attempt to indict Dr. Branch regarding her claims.

    Charlotte A. Clark-Frieson

    August 12, 2008 at 6:24 pm

  17. Unfortunately for me, I know exactly what rape is and am completely accurate about my comparison of what occurred to rape. This is why these acts are called civil and human rights “violations”. If you read the account that was well described in the articles and radio interview, you should well know that the officers did much more than search the vehicle and ask questions. Society and Anniston does not need 8 officers who do not do their job properly, but instead, abuse the citizens they are charged to protect. I don’t know what easy money you are talking about, but I don’t see how you could think speaking out and demanding responsibility as the receipt of easy or any other kind of money. This just makes no sense whatsoever.

    People really need to have the decency and respect for the rights of all citizens. Also, what is happening in this forum is not publicity, but the raising of awareness and exercising 1st amendment rights to expose what the Anniston police commonly practice in secret. Instead of lashing out, you should be a part of the solution of making sure constitutional rights are respected and protected; that is AMERICAN. You said “They may be wrong for what they have done, or the way they handled this situation”, this is the important part that you seem to have forgotten is the issue. It is best not to qualify statements as a lack of desire to offend, when in fact this is precisely the intent. What is actually despicable and disgusting is unwarranted hostility towards those rightfully seeking redress for being abused. At least the masses fully understand the situation and I (and I’m sure others who suffered the similar acts) appreciate them for this.

    Dr. Stacy Branch

    August 12, 2008 at 11:15 pm

  18. Bobbi & Charlotte,

    At 5AM, when Bobbi posted the piece, Bobbi could have been experiencing some insomnia and one could excuse someone in such a bad physiological state. But who knows, Bobbi could have been under the influence of alcohol or drug hangover. But wait a minute. This issue is about a human being, a US-born citizen, period. Simply traveling on her own country’s highways. It should have nothing to do with race. It’s even worse if Bobbi’s response has to do with his race, like Charlotte suggested. I am neither but I know Satans (with capital S) when I see them. Since the Anniston PD and City officials have not denied the incident (so well documented in writing and video), I think anyone with some sense of justice in their heart should be appalled by and condemn their actions. These 8 officers are nothing but Satans in human flesh, trained and paid with our tax money (Alabama accepts taxes from all races) unfortunately. They do not need to be on the streets as police officers. Bobbi, explain to the world why the officers went under the hood of the truck removing the air filter, draining the radiator fluid etc? All that at taxpayers’expense?

    Talking about being disgusted by Dr. Branch’s comparison of her experience at the hands of the officers with rape, Bobbi appears to have been immunized so well to savagery of one human being by another in his/her community that he/she has lost any sensitivity to these issues, if there was ever any. Also since you mentioned 911, I think you need some serious education in primary and high school US history (it appears you don’t know your American history). Because you are unaware (or conveniently overlooked) of terrorism of Americans by Americans (primarily by some White against Blacks and Native American Indians that continues till today), I urge you to hit the books. Blacks have been terrorized in America for more than 4 centuries and more have been murdered by people in uniform and without. And while my heart and prayers go to the innocent victims of 911, don’t make 911 as if it is the first incident of terrorism in America. The difference is that foreigners the crimes in 911. Locally bred terrorists (some are these 8 Satans in Anniston) and terrorism like one against Dr. Branch continues as I write. So I ask you to get out of your couch and get educated about your history. Moreover, neither Blacks nor Latinos were involved in 911 so why is 911 a justification for police savagery against innocent people.

    Finally, you want to keep the 8 Satans in the Anniston police department just because their firing would incapacitate the force. I could not disagree more with you. With Dr. Branch’s training and wide professional experience, I would rather have her train dogs to do their jobs. At about her $160-$200/hour running professional service rate, Anniston PD would be getting a bargain, not just for her professional service but for the kinds of trained police dogs that will be produced by Dr. Branch. These dogs will be trained to recognize human beings (not color of the individual) and I am confident that they will do a better job on Alabama neighborhoods and highways. Oh my God, some people still live in Jim Crow days. This is 21st century America and this incident should be condemned by any person with some clear brain in their skull.

    Dr. Rufai

    August 14, 2008 at 3:33 am

  19. This is abuse of power was ridiculous and makes all law enforcement (especially LE in the Southern U.S.) look awful. It simply doesn’t bode well for the agencies and makes the people which they represent look bigoted and backwards. It also doesnt’ up hold an image of Southerners being able to shake off the shackles of the remnants of historical racial inequalities. I hope that the probe into this matter is adjudicated in a proper and professional manner and that those responsible for such a travesty of justice are held, both accountable and up as an example of what NOT to do.

    Jim

    August 14, 2008 at 4:59 am

  20. DR Branch’s story strikes me as a Hollywood movie from the dark days of America (slavery period). America, despite this ugly incident has made progress on the racial problem but a lot needs to be done. Incidents like this are a painful reminder of how much still remains to be done. I sympathize with Dr. Branch and pray she recovers from the trauma. I believe your justice system can and should address this problem.

    Dr.D.A.Y.ADAWA

    August 14, 2008 at 4:47 pm

  21. It is very unfortunate. Disciplinary action need to be taken against those police officers by the authority concern.

    O.M. Abubkar

    August 18, 2008 at 11:29 am

  22. Dr. Rufai,

    Wow…people like yourself amaze me. Absolutely no clue. No, I am not under the influence of alcohol, or any drug. You made that statement because I posted at 5am, well, Dr., you posted at 3am, does that mean you are the alcoholic, doper? No one ever said what happened to her was right. Maybe you should get off your couch and educate yourself, because you sound like a dumb a**

    bobbi

    August 19, 2008 at 9:24 am

  23. Such actions can not be sanctioned by ignoring them. This is the time of CHANGE for ALABAMA and EVERYWHERE. NO MORE . Charges must be filed

    Delta Soror

    August 23, 2008 at 4:30 pm

  24. I had a simular incident recently with Colhoun County Sheriff Department. I contacted three lawyers, the ACLU and the NAACP….No one was interested and told me that they could do nothing to help me. It seems that the police are getting away with brutality because no one is willing to stand up against them and they know it. They are out of control and are enjoying it so much that they have no intention to STOP. What are YOU going to do???? Wait until it happens to you?

    Manley

    August 31, 2008 at 8:34 pm

  25. Dr. Stacy Branch and her husband’s terrible experience in Alabama should have consequences for the police that committed this offense, the police department, and the city of Anniston. These types of crimes continue to happen to African-Americans, Hispanics, and other minorities because most people aren’t willing to speak up about injustices which they experience from those in authority. Dr. Branch has had the courage to file legal action against those persons who violated her civil rights, and she should receive support for her claims. This country will never be great until ALL PEOPLE in this United States are respected and treated fairly in this justice system. We have a chance in November to vote for a real change in the path this country has taken in the past. Let’s go to the polls and do it!! Obama/Biden for President and Vice-President

    Harriette

    September 5, 2008 at 2:01 pm

  26. How ironic to know that in this year, when an African-American has been nominated to pursue the office of President of the United States; we continue to hear about Black citizens of this country – who abide by its laws – repeatedly having our civil rights violated by those who are “supposed” to protect and serve all citizens. What Dr. Branch experienced in Anniston seems to be becoming more the norm than an isolated event. I have known Dr. Branch almost 10 years and can attest to her moral character and impressive professional accomplishments; in spite of numerous roadblocks put before her. She’s a fighter, a survivor, and I encourage you Stacy, to stay strong in this struggle. You know that Maat will prevail. Peace.

    Naanyun

    September 6, 2008 at 8:32 pm

  27. There is no reason that these policemen should be in a profession that the public considers as providing a community service. It is bad enough that some police departments have a reputation of being “dirty cops”. Should we just assume that all police departments have “bad” cops and to distrust them if we are to be stopped on the highway? Should we take classes on how to respond to policemen when being approached by them? Remember, just a few decades ago these same “policemen” in the Deep South used to wear white hoods on their heads, burn crosses in our yards and lynch Black men. These policemen don’t wear the hoods anymore so they try to use whatever scare tactics that they can get away with during these times.

    Dr. Branch should pursue with her case against these policemen. It would allow the police department to understand that not all citizens will allow for such ridiculous behavior by their colleagues. The police department should have these men removed from the force AND psychologically analyzed for their actions. Some people act out certain behaviors because they feel inferior and have to empower others; or they were raised by family members to behave this way towards people that are different from them; or maybe they are genetically encoded to behave this way for self preservation of their race and therefore don’t know why they act upon their hatred for the darker race. There are college courses in major universities in psychology about racial profiling. These courses should be mandatory in the police department nowadays because of what we hear about policemen abusing their power across the nation on a regular basis ESPECIALLY towards the Black race.

    I encourage Dr. Branch to continue her fight against these policemen that caused her unnecessary aggravation and grief. She was going about her life, as we all do on a daily basis, and these policemen created a day of Hell that will never be forgotten by her and her husband. The little trust that she may have had for the police has vanished and I applaud her for standing up for her rights. Continue on Dr. Branch!!!!

    Dr. Cassandra Sumter

    September 7, 2008 at 5:41 am

  28. [...] – bookmarked by 3 members originally found by noattention on 2008-08-19 African American Doctor Demands Firing Of 8 Anniston Police [...]

    Bookmarks about Voice

    September 10, 2008 at 9:16 pm

  29. I have never known a situation so ridiculous as racism. What makes some people think that because of the color of their skin, that they are better than black Americans or anybody else for that matter. Money does not make us better, having a lot of material things does not make us better, nothing makes us better than the next person. Those are backward thoughts and actions. If you want to be truly better, go within and become a better person. Don’t deal only with the outside of yourself. Love yourself from the inside out to the utmost and you’ll then find out how to love others.

    Racism is an ego trip. An ego trip that shows how wrong, insecure and cowardly some people are. I suggest for those who want to hold on to this mind frame, that you begin to let go of it by healing your insecurities and leave other people out of such a low mindset as racism. It’s easier to be glad than mad.

    Vicki

    September 12, 2008 at 2:22 pm

  30. This proves that racism is alive and well in our country. This situation was uncalled for, I hope that Dr. Branch gets the outcome that she seeks. Police officers take an oath “To Protect and Serve”, cleary this was not the case in this awful situation.

    With our new president, I hope that we will finally see the change that we deserve as a people!
    God Bless

    Michelle Bowers

    November 26, 2008 at 2:17 pm

  31. Dr. Branch,

    Thank you for sharing your story of this very unfortunate event. Our prayers are with and your husband as the spotlight is shined on these dark actions and God’s mercy and justice is revealed in time.

    Fredrick Tippett

    December 1, 2008 at 6:55 pm

  32. Stacy, I am glad that you are sharing your story with the world, this will allow the rest of the world to understand the horrible injustice that you and your husband experienced. I will support you in every step that you take in seeking justice.

    Skye Hamilotn

    December 2, 2008 at 11:12 pm

  33. Stacy,

    We are in support of your actions to right this WRONG that has been imposed on you and Victor. What is important is that Black people in this country should remember is that racism unchecked will only grow and grow. We must remember that simply because 2009 will bring a change in the WHITE house, acts of violence such as that you experienced are still allowed to flourish. And these acts or terror and violence in Alabama, Mississippi, New York City, LA or wherever under the guise of LAW will continue if we do not stand up in every corner where such an inustice occurs. There is really no need for a Rev. Al Sharpton or a Rev. Jesse Jackson to come if Black folk in Anniston are awake.
    May the Creator give you guidance and peace as you engage in this struggle.

    Dr. M. I. Moses

    December 14, 2008 at 12:41 am

  34. This act of racist/terrorism should not be ignored and I add my voice to the many who have gone before, to include those on the spiritual realm.
    The struggle continues, there is much work at hand. “Freedom ain’t free.” To each eye’s reader, I challenge you to become involved. Stand up and allow your art medium to be your voice, be it literary, music, fiber, drama etc, to support the actions of social justice. Share this story with everyone you know, especially with those who will start a sentence in a discussion of oppression with ‘back in the day.” This act and countless untold and unreported acts of terrorism are taking place in Any-town, USA everyday.
    The light is on this incident. Stacy and Victorlano we keep you in the power of the Creator.

    With Respect,
    Ajoy

    Ajoy

    December 14, 2008 at 4:18 am

  35. I have been many places in this world but I have never eperienced this kind of racism. We as African Americans/Hispanics have been struggling with racism for over 300 years and nothing has changed. We are still looked at being beneath whites and I am fed up with it. Ihave served my country in the U.S. Armed Forces and I still see some sort of racism. We must all realize that GOD CREATED US ALL EQUALLY!!!

    Cliff Matthews

    December 24, 2008 at 1:39 am

  36. Flatly and simply, what happened to Stacy and Victor is wrong, both from an individual standpoint, but more so from an institutional standpoint. In acting toward a solution, my fervent prayer is that the Almighty would order a new mind and heart perspective that all involved might see themselves and others differently, and so behave differently toward others. While I’m eager for justice for the despicable acts perpetrated by these people, I’m more eager for change in the hearts of these men. And this I know requires divine intervention. I’m also deeply gratified that Stacy and Victor were fortunate enough to be able to move forward with their lives. Other victims of police misconduct and brutality were not so lucky. To all the persons of Anniston responsible for either perpetrating or defending these blatant crimes, repent while you still have time. And to Stacy and Victor, by posting these comments, each of us say to you: ‘You’re not forgotten! You matter! And, you’re loved.

    Carlton Hill

    March 3, 2009 at 2:49 pm

  37. the statement from police chief the allegations
    is ridiculious, no it is not ridiculious.i from
    Anniston.look at the past history? 1. starting with
    the mayor.2.judge accused of sex abuse.3.dhr not made publick.the problem is not onley with the police. its this so called court system.the onley way to stop it is do not vot for thes so called
    judges let the gov put them in.

    mark worley

    April 24, 2009 at 7:18 am

  38. I am very sorry that Dr. Branch needed to experience this.
    I have known Dr. Branch since 1998. Dr. Branch was my Mentor at North Carolina State University. During my tenure at NCSU, she earned my respect and admiration. Her strong personality and desire of achievement as well as her love for humankind (regardless of ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, etc) were some of the attributes made her different from most of the faculty that I have interacted with (as an student as well as a faculty). Plus, knowing her beginning and her success made here unique in many ways.
    I need to confess, while at NCSU, I could not understand many things that she referred to when talking about the prejudice and racism she experienced when growing up in Philadelphia “The City of Brotherly Love”. In numerous instances, I told her that some times things appear like that because the person want to see them like that. However, now, after living in the Philadelphia area for longer than 4 years, I understand exactly what she was making reference to back in the NCSU days. It is very sad to see discrimination and racism until now, when the President of our country is an African American man.

    But the question is what to do about this. I think that first of all we ALL need to stand for our rights yet the way is not violence, let’s keep in mind that it is possible to caught more mosquitoes with honey than with vinegar. Therefore, let’s stand for our right but in a non-violent way. Abusers usually wait for violent reactions to continue with their abuses. Let’s avoid violent reactions, let’s avoid giving opportunity to people to continue with their abuses. Let’s educate to our people no matter the ethnicity, believe system or anything that we must share in harmony this beautiful creation.

    I am going to share with you something that I experienced a couple of months ago in San Diego, CA. I went on vacation looking for some sun. Therefore, I went to the beach almost every day while there. One of those days, when leaving the beach, I missed my bus, in an attempt to catch it; I decide to run to the bus stop. When running I noticed a policeman observing me. I continue because I was doing nothing wrong. But because I missed the bus and I needed to exchange busses no too far from there, I decided to walk to the transfer to avoid the 30 plus minutes waiting. Yet, when approaching the next traffic light, I decide to cross the street running (the light was still on green but I knew was going to change soon). Oh surprise, even before I finished crossing the street, I saw a police car coming my way. AS soon as I finished crossing the street the officer put his lights on and called me implying that I cross the street when the light was on red. Then he requested my Driver’s license. I respond to him in a very polite and respectable way indicating that I rush in crossing the street because the light was still on green and identify myself as a visitor. He immediately asked me if I was visiting the university. Also, he explained to me that he requested my Driver’s License because that is the procedure. Also, he advised to me to avoid crossing the street in a rush because drivers in CA are not the most careful ones. This experience restated that being polite and respectful pays off. People could argue that I am one of those few lucky ones. May be yes, may be not; but, this is my experience and I hope people remember my experience when in similar circumstances.

    Once again, let’s stand for our right but remember non-violence is the best way. We ALL must share this great creation in a peaceful way.

    Javier

    November 2, 2009 at 5:46 am

  39. One of the main things that I find hard to believe is at the very beginning of the story. Interstate 20 does not run through Anniston. Nor does it run through any of Anniston’s jurisdiction where APD patrols. Those areas are the responsibility of the Oxford Police Dept., The Calhoun County Sheriff’s Dept. and The Alabama State Troopers. With such a glaring mistake being made at the beginning of the story, I find it hard to give any credibility to any of the rather outlandish claims made by Dr. Branch. I’m not saying that any of what she said is false. I just don’t know how this could have happened to her when she is on I-20 and Anniston doesn’t even cover it.

    Michael

    November 24, 2009 at 9:32 pm

  40. To Michael:
    The lawsuit against the city of Anniston and the officers is public information and can be accessed online (Alabama Northern District Federal Court). It contains the exhibits (actual irrefutable evidence) showing that they in fact stopped us on I-20! You are right about one thing; that the officers were out of their jurisdiction worsening this abuse. The officers are not even denying (because they can´t) that they stopped us on I-20. THE BLARING MISTAKE WAS MADE BY THE OFFICERS. You did not even stop to consider this. Your question really should have been why they were where they should not have been in the first place, then blatantly abusing law abiding citizens. The credibility in question here is that of the officers who abused citizens’ rights on several counts.

    To Javier, Rufai and the other supporters here:
    Thank you so very much for your wonderful comments and being willing to let the world know your thoughts concerning this case. I really do hope that these discussions and sharing of stories will help empower others to stand up for their rights and say “no more” to these dehumanizing abuses. These abuses will only stop when we act and work together to make them stop. Thank you and take care.

    Dr. Stacy Branch

    December 29, 2009 at 2:16 am

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    May 29, 2011 at 6:59 pm

  43. Saludos. Soy el esposo de la Dra. Stacy Branch. Por algunos comentos aquí, me veo obligado escribir que fuimos abusados, detenidos, y encarcelados por la policía de Anniston, Alabama por ningún motivo justo. Simplemente era un acto de agresión basado en racismo. Yo soy hispano y mi esposa es africana-americana. Después de pasar mi lado (el conductor) y el lado de mi esposa, las policías vieron nuestras caras. No hasta después de sus movimientos ridículos (de rebasar primero) me forzaron a parar. Su pretexto era que pisé una línea blanca (una mentira).

    No voy a repetir la historia que ya está escrito arriba, pero voy a expresarme de la desgracia de las acciones que pasa constantemente en los Estados Unidos. Yo me sentí mas para mi esposa que estaba bien abusado de oficiales en su propio país de ciudadanía, donde nació y contribuyó mucho de valor. Aunque yo estaba afectado por este horror que pasó, rompió mi corazón a ver mi esposa sufrir esta injusticia absoluta y como ella tuvo que luchar muy fuerte acerca de esta violación que esas policías le hicieron.

    Muchas policías practican su odio racial en vez de proteger y servir la comunidad aunque supuestamente están en un país de libertad. La libertad no puede existir en un país que tiene el más grande porcentaje de sus personas encarceladas que cualquier otro país del mundo. El exceso de arrestos falsos e innecesarios son intolerables y toda la gente debe sentirse así. El hecho que una mitad de la gente encarcelada es de la raza africano-americano es más evidencia que el racismo es extremamente grave en el país. Es demasiado común que mucha gente está encarcelada por ninguna razón. Encima de esto, causa manchas inmerecidas en sus historiales limpios.

    Es cierto que hay mucha corrupción en otros países, pero es muy diferente cuando la corrupción es por dinero. ¡La corrupción basada en puro odio ilógico que es inmerecido es el peor, hasta te quieren ver muerto! Hay gente que le gusta decir que las policías de México son corruptas. Sí, algunos son, pero esos buscan dinero, no a destruir o dañar la vida de alguien que ni conocen. Además, no tienen hábitos a andar inventando pretextos ridículos que no existen para parar y arrestar falsamente y maliciosamente gente inocente.

    Hay racismo en otros países incluyendo de mío. Pero manifiesta más como ignorar algunas razas. Al contrario, en los EE.UU, yo veo que el racismo manifiesta mas como acciones de matar y destruir vidas sin ningún razón. Yo creo que la mayoría de humanos preferirían estar ignorados en vez de estar matados o completamente quitados de derechos y privilegios.

    Ignorantes quieren decir que los africano-americanos e hispanos cometan más crímenes. No sé como gente pueden caer por esto estúpida mentira. Miren a nosotros. Nunca cometimos ningún crimen en nuestras vidas. Encima de todo, mi esposa luchó de la pobreza y más para tener una profesión honorable. Todavía, le atacaron. Durante de toda esta experiencia horrible, portábamos respetables y cooperativos. Todavía, nos abusaron.

    No digan que las policías hicieron un error honesta o actuaron por un malentendido. No era ningún error o mal entendido. Gente que dice eso sabe que le da pena a admitir la maldad de estos asuntos. No crean que esas policías no supieron que estaban arrestándonos falsamente. Simplemente supieron que pueden hacer lo que quieren. Además, supieron lo que cuesta de la vida de alguien para defenderse en el sistema después de este tipo de ataque. Ellos solamente abusaron su autoridad usando sus placas y armas contra de gente inocente. ¿Qué tipo de personas son ellos? Es muy raro que una policía que hace actos así de discriminación reciba consecuencias. Normalmente ellos mantienen sus trabajos. Un gran problema es que la mayoría de las víctimas no hacen nada. La poca gente que hace algo sufre y tiene que luchar demasiado para una simple justicia.

    Victoriano Dominguez

    September 17, 2011 at 12:54 am

  44. On the behalf of my husband, I provide the English translation of his conmment below:

    Greetings. I am the husband of Dr. Stacy Branch. Because of some comments here, I see myself obliged to write that we were abused, detained, and imprisoned by the police of Anniston, Alabama by no just motive. Simply it was an act of aggression based on racism. I am Hispanic and my wife is African-American. After passing my side (the driver) and the side of my wife, the police officers saw our faces. Not until after their ridiculous movements (to pass first) they forced me to stop. Their pretext was that I touched a white line (a lie).

    I am not going to repeat the history already written above, but I am going to express myself about the misfortune of the actions that occur constantly in the United States. I felt more for my wife that was abused by officials in her own country of citizenship, where she was born and contributed much of value. Although I was affected by this horror that happened, it broke my heart to see my wife suffer this absolute injustice and how she had to fight very strong regarding this violation that those police officers did to her.

    Many police officers practice their racial hatred instead of protecting and serving the community although supposedly they are in a country of liberty. Liberty cannot exist in a country that has the largest percentage of its people in prison than any other country in the world. The false and unnecessary excess of arrests are intolerable and all the people should feel this way. The fact that half of the people incarcerated are of the African-American race is more evidence that racism is extremely serious in the country. It is too common that many people are imprisoned for no reason. On top of this, this causes undeserved stains on their clean records.

    It is certain that there is a lot of corruption in other countries, but it is very different when the corruption is for money. The corruption based on pure illogical hatred that is undeserved is much worse, until they want to see you dead! Some people like to say that the police officers of Mexico are corrupt. Yes, some are, but those seek money, not to destroy or damage the life of someone that they don´t even know. Besides, they do not have the habit of going around inventing ridiculous pretexts that do not exist in order to stop and falsely and maliciously arrest innocent people.

    There is racism in other countries including mine. But it manifests as ignoring some races. To the contrary, in the United States, I see that the racism manifests as actions to kill and to destroy lives without reason. I believe that the majority of humans would prefer to be ignored instead of being killed or completely deprived of rights and privileges.

    Ignorant people say that African-Americans and Hispanics commit more crimes. I do not know how people can fall for this stupid lie. Look at us. We never committed any crime in our lives. On top of this, my wife struggled from poverty and more to have an honorable profession. Still, they attacked her. During the horrible experience, we were respectable and cooperative. Still, they abused us.

    Do not say that the police officers made an honest error or they acted because of a misunderstanding. There was no error or misunderstanding. People that say this know that they are ashamed to admit the wickedness of these matters. Do not believe that those police officers did not know that they were arresting us falsely. Simply, they knew that they can do what they want. Besides, they knew what it costs the life of someone to defend himself in the system after this type of attack. They only abused their authority using their badges and weapons against innocent people. What type of people are those? It is very rare that a police officer who does acts of discrimination receive consequences. Normally they maintain their jobs. A great problem is that the majority of the victims do not do anything. The few people that do anything suffer and have to fight too much for simple justice.

    (S. Branch) - Sr. Victoriano Dominguez

    September 17, 2011 at 12:58 am

  45. Greetings. A very dear friend suggested that I indicate on this blog the final outcome of this case. When I see the callousness of many other blogs and newsfeeds, I thought, why? However, she rightly pointed out that it may help inspire someone who has suffered the same or similar acts to seek vindication and accountability. Even if only one person can be encouraged, it will be positive. The case was finally resolved in the summer of 2010. There are still lingering effects; this aspect cannot be erased. I will not mislead anyone by saying this endeavor was anything other than wearisome and trying. However, it was more than worth it since the short and long-term effects of doing nothing are immensely damaging.

    Any normal thinking human being (note: I said NORMAL thinking) can see clearly that none of this should have occurred. Remember, the case is public record. Therefore, there is no need to speculate about whether these things occurred. Just go to the documents and clear facts. When some people illogically want to find holes (but can’t), in an obvious case of abuse of law-abiding citizens, they resort to accusations that the facts are just false or the events did not happen. In my case, the court and other records are clear. If people would just open their eyes, they can see that these things are occurring excessively (daily, if not hourly) in the U.S.

    Also, do not be fooled by people or websites that take the ignorant position that filing formal complaints and lawsuits when subjected to abuses of authority is overreacting. Being unreasonably searched, detained, arrested for a crime that officers know has not been committed, handcuffed and taken to jail, processed, falsely charged, etc. is nothing to brush off. It is nowhere near an overreaction to seek redress, justice and accountability. This is especially true when an incident does not involve any misunderstanding, but instead malice. These types of incidents can mar the life of a person who actually did commit a crime. How do you think it affects one who did not?

    Let’s just be real here. When most professionals commit acts of bad faith, ill will, malice, fraud, or even make mistakes, they often lose their licenses, are sued, and their reputations are tarnished. If these professionals are not self-employed, they are often fired immediately. This is so even if these acts are committed outside of or apart from their professional functions. Law enforcement personnel responsible for protecting a community and who have the power and ability to take lives should be no exception. Remember the many victims of police brutality who did not live to seek redress. Many of those had not committed any crime. Does our society embrace this as normal or acceptable?

    Since our society seems to have just given up on requiring that the law is practiced in a just fashion, it is a very daunting task for the very few individuals who address these issues when they happen. EACH and EVERY case of abuse of authority of any kind MUST be addressed. Otherwise, expect the status quo (or worse) without end.

    Racial profiling, false arrest, malicious arrest, and malicious prosecution exist; these are not fantasies. Also, many have had difficulty in finding attorneys that care enough or are courageous enough to take these types of cases. Consequently, many of those filed the lawsuits themselves (Pro Se). Therefore, it is not true that it is futile and impossible to address these types of horrendous abuses. However, it may soon be futile if people decide to keep doing nothing.

    Dr. Stacy Branch

    September 17, 2011 at 1:22 am

  46. i hope they fire those bastards, and their white daughters get knocked up by black men .

    finemocha

    May 2, 2012 at 4:13 am

  47. This is junior, brother of three sisters who personal know the Dr. And just want to say that she has lays been a loving ,caring and professional person. The family and I are upset that such a beautiful person such as Stacey and her husband had to go through such a horrible incident such as they did. This incident really let us know that the constitution yet written to protect all people really merely only protect certain people. Stacey has always been a law biding honest citizen and always strived for excellence and her skin color only mean that she has to work twice as hard to be heard and recognized as a American Citizen! God Bless to Stacey and Hubby, justis shall ome but it will be swift… Stacey, at the end of the day dear, Your are not alone and take this experience with you and when You are able give it to God so you won’t Carrie the burden and rape of the officers action forward but merely you will leave them in able hands. God is ble and shall fight this battle for you. You come from place where survival was the only life we new and rose yu

    Jesse montague

    August 18, 2012 at 7:54 pm


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