American Samizdat

Saturday, January 13, 2007. *
A distinguished British historian who tried to cross a road in Atlanta, Georgia, has complained of being wrestled to the ground, pinioned by five police officers and imprisoned.

Felipe Fernandez-Armesto, 56, visiting professor of global environmental history at the University of London, was at the conference of the American Historical Association when he was caught jaywalking.

The professor had hoped to spend the afternoon listening to discourse on arcane topics. Instead, he was handcuffed to another suspect and fingerprinted in a detention centre, where his peppermints were confiscated, "presumably on the suspicion that they might be some kind of narcotic".

His bail was set at $1800 and he remained behind bars for eight hours, "becoming guide, philosopher, and friend to the down-and-outs and sad, degraded or deranged people who were my fellow inmates". When he told a judge his side of the story in court the next morning, the case was dropped.
posted by Mike at 5:20 AM
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