A UC Santa Barbara student whose forceful detainment in the Arbor went viral two weeks ago will be going to court during Spring Break to face charges of resisting arrest.
The Santa Barbara County District Attorney filed the case of Erin Morgan, a fourth-year zoology major, with the Santa Barbara Superior Court on Monday, setting her court date for the morning of Mar. 27.
UCPD officers arrested Morgan on Feb. 27 after she allegedly attempted to flee from receiving a citation for illegally skateboarding through the Arbor. The video of Morgan’s detainment, which went viral on Facebook in the days following the arrest, shows two UCPD officers in the Arbor taking Morgan down to her knees and then down to the ground on her stomach.
According to UCPD spokesperson Sgt. Rob Romero, the two UCPD officers instructed Morgan to stop skateboarding and to wait as they handed her a citation. Romero said she waited “for maybe close to half a minute” before grabbing her skateboard and riding in the opposite direction from which she originally came.
He said the officers yelled at her to stop, but she continued to go. According to Romero, an officer then ran after her, grabbed the back of her backpack and took her to the ground.
According to Romero, the officer tried to get her to place her hands behind her back, but instead she tried to stand up. He said when the second officer came to assist, they each grabbed one of her arms because she was trying to get up and then they “forcibly” took her to the ground.
“Taking somebody to ground — if you ever played any type of sport or if you wrestled or anything like that — when you use force, it’s not pretty,” he said the day after the incident. “It’s not something we wish we have to use on people we arrest.”
In an interview with the Nexus on Feb. 28, Morgan confirmed she tried to ride away from receiving her citation, but she said she did not expect the officers would use force to detain her.
“My biggest concern is just how quickly it came to that,” she said. “I didn’t think that just me skateboarding away would result in me getting thrown to the ground.”
Morgan also said she was booked in the county jail on the night of her arrest, and after paying a $2,500 bail, she returned home early the next day.
She told the Nexus on Tuesday that she does not intend to challenge the charges of resisting arrest, but said she does intend to speak to a civil attorney about the forcible detainment.
“I walked away from him and that’s against the law. So I’m not going to try to fight that,” she said Tuesday. “He violated my civil rights. You can’t just throw someone to the ground for rolling away from a police officer.”
According to court records, authorities have charged Morgan for violating California Penal Code 148(a)(1). The law holds that a person who “willfully resists, delays or obstructs” a police officer shall receive a fine no greater than $1,000, a county jail sentence no longer than a year or both the fine and imprisonment.
This isn’t news…please, Nexus, hold yourself to a higher standard than that of The Tab.
I would like to thank the officers for their service.
suck a chode
Why not just do what you are told, or in this case, asked? Spoiled and entitled! If anyone decided to just leave after being asked to stop by a cop, that just isn’t going to end well. Police can use force to make sure brats like you don’t continue to break the rules! Take responsibility and grow up!! Thanks campus police – the skateboarding on campus is out of control.
I thought that i could break the law, run from the police and that they wouldnt stop me. My rights have been violated because they physically stopped my from fleeing them and then increased force appropriately as i resisted arrest.
How does this make sense?
The no skateboarding is a stupid rule… why can’t they make some sort of rule that you can’t skateboard within a certain distance of people walking – like in between classes. If the walkway is wide open, not allowing skateboarding at all is silly. Notice how she doesn’t say she is going to sue, but “speak with a civil attorney.” The attorney will most certainly inform her that she has no grounds to sue.
This is because a proximity rule is too hard to enforce and consequently too open for interpretation. If I recall correctly you can skate after 3pm, when there’s less foot traffic so it’s pretty reasonable already
Actually Ms. Morgan, yes they can: Reading 835a in the California penal code states: Any peace officer who has reasonable cause to believe that the person to be arrested has committed a public offense may use reasonable force to effect the arrest, to prevent escape or to overcome resistance. A peace officer who makes or attempts to make an arrest need not retreat or desist from his efforts by reason of the resistance or threatened resistance of the person being arrested; nor shall such officer be deemed an aggressor or lose his right to self-defense by the use of reasonable… Read more »
Spoiled entitled retard. Trying to leave when a police officer is giving you a ticket is absolutely a reason to get forcibly detained.