airport

Air traveler choked to death in police custody at Phoenix airport after being handcuffed, detained

Tuesday, October 02, 2007
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com (See all articles...)
Tags: airport security, civil rights, law enforcement

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(NaturalNews) Arguing with airport security officials is now apparently risky to your life. Carol Anne Gotbaum, a 45-year-old mother who was arrested at the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport after becoming irate over a missed flight, was later found dead in a law enforcement holding cell. The official story now appearing in the mainstream media -- for those people gullible enough to believe it -- is that the woman choked herself to death with her own handcuffs even though her hands were cuffed behind her back!

I've never actually seen anyone try to choke themselves to death with their own handcuffs, but I imagine it would be impossible to succeed at the effort. For one thing, even if you managed to grasp your own neck and choke off your blood supply until you lost consciousness, your arms would go limp and you'd no longer be able to continue choking yourself. Blood flow would be restored and you'd regain consciousness in a few seconds.

Everybody knows you can't choke yourself to death. Even Yahoo! Answers offers a short explanation of why: Click here to read "Why is it impossible to choke yourself to death?"

Yahoo! Answers isn't exactly a scientific tome of knowledge on human anatomy, but I'm quite certain that if you asked a thousand coroners if they've ever seen anyone "choke themselves to death," you'd get a thousand No's. At the same time, you'd probably get a few coroners saying, "But I've seen cases where people were choked to death by someone else, and it was made to look like they choked themselves to death..."

So how did she really die, then?

The official story about this woman's death, of course, is bunk. So how did she really die? Well, it's a whole lot more plausible that she was strangled by someone else who held their hands around her neck to cut off the blood supply to her brain, then kept them in place until she died (which actually takes several minutes). Any ideas who would have the means and motive to enter a police-controlled holding cell, strangle the woman, then make up a ridiculous story about the woman strangling herself with a pair of handcuffs?

A rogue police officer, of course. The motivation is simple: Fear of a lawsuit about police brutality. Suppose the woman was assaulted and struck by airport police, then screamed threats about suing them or going public with her story. Many law-enforcement authorities, as we've all seen recently, tend to greatly overreact when verbally threatened. Rather than exercising restraint, they may actually assault these citizens. Don't believe me? Watch the "Don't Tase Me, Bro!" video showing six police officers assaulting, restraining, then tazing a college student who dared to speak his mind at a John Kerry rally. Click here to read the full story on this recent case of police brutality...

Another scenario is that the cop may have tussled with the woman and accidentally strangled her to death during her arrest. Covering up the crime is easy: Just throw her in a cell and say that she strangled herself.

Now, I know a lot of cops, and most of them are really great people. The vast majority of police officers are honest, hard-working professionals who really go out of their way to protect the public. But as every police officer also knows, there's always a bad apple in the bunch. Every major metropolitan police department in the country has at least one evil, power-seeking, ego-maniac police officer who's a loose cannon just waiting to go off. The death of this woman at the Phoenix airport could have emerged precisely because a loose cannon police officer just happened to be having a bad day and went too far with arresting and detaining a citizen causing a ruckus at the airport. Perhaps he struck her, was verbally threatened by her, and decided to cover his tracks.

If so, it certainly wouldn't be the first time a police officer killed an innocent victim to eliminate evidence of police brutality. Just ask any young black male living in Los Angeles, and you'll hear an endless stream of police brutality stories... many of which are absolutely true. Read this Wikipedia entry on police brutality to learn more about just how widespread this is.

Just two days, a story surfaced about corrupt Chicago police officers involved in murder plots. As printed in the Associated Press:

CHICAGO - Videotapes of angry officers savagely beating civilians and charges that a murder plot was hatched within an elite special operations unit have Chicago's troubled police department reeling again. Adding to the department's woes is word from federal prosecutors that they are investigating claims that homicide detectives tortured suspects into confessing to murders that landed them on death row in the 1980s.

The biggest shock came Wednesday when federal prosecutors charged special operations officer Jerome Finnigan with planning the murder of another member of the unit to keep him from talking to the government.

Finnigan, 44, also is one of six members of the special operations unit, created to crack down on gangs and drugs, who are charged with operating a shakedown operation aimed at civilians. Prosecutors say they have him on tape weighing the possibility of having someone kill a fellow special operations officer to keep him from becoming a witness against him.

In another videotaped confrontation, off-duty officer Anthony Abbate was seen apparently beating a 115-pound female bartender because she would not serve him another drink. Abbate has pleaded not guilty to a felony charge of aggravated battery...


Is police brutality widespread? You bet it is.

What's the story behind the story?

Only fools believe the sanitized versions of the stories printed in the mainstream media these days. Skeptical thinkers always look for the story behind the headlines. What happened here that isn't being stated? We know a 45-year-old woman is dead, and that she died in a police holding cell at the Phoenix airport. The rest of the story could be pure fiction. Perhaps she started screaming not because she missed her flight, but because she didn't want to give up her bottle of water that she just paid $5 for at the airport newsstand.

Those bottles of water are dangerous, you know -- they're used by terrorists to McGyver weapons used to take over the cockpits of airplanes. Combine water with marshmallows and an air tube and you have a deadly water-powered marshmallow gun that can be used to intimidate passengers and crew. That's why bottles of water are routinely confiscated by airport security personnel. They've got the whole population scared into such a terror frenzy that they've convinced people H2O is a weapon!

The fear mongering by the TSA has become so insane that just yesterday, they announced that remote-controlled toys would now earn extra scrutiny at security checkpoints. Why? Because some kid posted an online video showing how you could use a remote-controlled toy to flip a switch, and now the TSA has come to the conclusion that no one could have possibly thought of this before, but now that the video is online, they have to treat all remote-controlled toys as potential weapons. Want to see a video of a super dangerous remote-controlled toy that the TSA now thinks is a highly complex weapon of terror? View this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LuwosQqWGls

Can you really choke yourself with a two-inch chain?

Now suppose I'm wrong about all this, and that the mainstream media is correct. Suppose this woman started screaming after she missed her flight: She gets arrested by airport police, she's screaming and throwing a fit, so they handcuff her and throw her in a detainment cell. I don't know if you've ever seen a pair of police handcuffs, but the chain is only about two inches long. Click here to see a picture of typical handcuffs.

It's not exactly enough chain to wrap around your own neck, even if you were stupid enough to try it. Do the Phoenix airport police seriously want us to believe that a woman choked herself to death on a two-inch chain?

I'm really, really interested to hear the explanation on this one. It must involve alternate realities or parallel universes of some kind. Perhaps an alien teleported into her holding cell, choked her with a much longer alien utility chain, and then teleported out of her cell, leaving her for dead.

Or maybe the woman is a mutant like Magneto from the X-Men, and she was so confused by the situation that she turned on her powerful mutant magnetic attraction ability and the handcuffs magnetically wrapped themselves around her neck, choking her to death. When she died, her magnetism turned itself off, leaving behind no evidence of what really happened. (Clever, huh?)

Maybe she's a circus performer and is triple jointed in her shoulder joints, which allowed her to wrap her own arms around her own neck three times, then use the handcuffs to get enough leverage to choke herself to death. Or, not to eliminate the ridiculous, perhaps she has really long, tough hair and she managed to braid her hair into a rope (using her own handcuffed hands), then strapped the rope around her own neck and somehow hung herself from the ceiling of a room that has nothing to hang from!

Even if any of these ridiculous scenarios are considered viable, the question remains: Why would she want to kill herself anyway? Being arrested by the airport police is not exactly something that would make most people want to kill themselves. If she was suicidal, why did she care so much about making the flight in the first place?

Remember, though, that the mainstream media is reporting the woman accidentally killed herself. Oh, right, she accidentally choked herself, without any intention on her part.

This takes an incredible leap of law enforcement imagination to believe. It's not like she was standing at the edge of the airplane jet way and accidentally fell off and killed herself on the tarmac. She didn't try to hitch a ride on the landing gear and end up being accidentally electrocuted in the plane's high-voltage wiring. If you believe what the press is reporting, this woman sat alone in a room with no ropes, no chains, no tools, no ledges, no electrical wires, no people, no sharp objects and no furniture, and yet somehow managed to accidentally kill herself with a pair of handcuffs even though she was handcuffed behind her back!

Gimmie a break. Can someone please explain how this is even plausible? A basic understanding of anatomy tells you that when your hands are handcuffed behind your back, you can't even reach your own neck!

It is far more likely (as in, a million times more likely) that she was killed by someone who invented this loony story to cover his tracks.

And that brings me to the point of this essay: Don't mess with airport security personnel. Many were Nazi soldiers in a former life, and they wield way too much power for their fragile little egos. They live their days in a state of constant boredom, hoping for that one moment of excitement when they get to make an arrest, handcuff someone, or rough them up a little just to show them who's in charge.

Goons, grunts and Nazi wannabees

If you've ever traveled in the United States, you've probably already noticed that the airport security people hired by the U.S. government are not exactly the cream of the crop in American society. If it wasn't for the marketing of fear and terror by the U.S. government, many of these people wouldn't even have jobs at all. What they do for a living is of absolutely no benefit to society, and their presence has nothing whatsoever to do with security but everything to do with making sure the population lives in a constant state of fear.

Don't believe me? Read this report from ABC News, channel 15 in Phoenix, Arizona, which filmed unbelievable lapses in security at the Phoenix Airport just weeks ago, where people with backpacks, crates and even bicycles were able to walk right through security without being checked at all! Here's the text from their story and video, available by clicking here.

We've discovered a 4.5 hour time frame each night when virtually anything can be brought into the secure side of Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport. There's no metal detector, no X-ray machine, and it's apparently not a problem.

Afraid to show her face, one long time Sky Harbor employee talks about the security most people don't see.

Lisa Fletcher: "You're telling me Sky Harbor's not safe?"

Employee: "I'm telling you Sky Harbor's not safe and hasn't been for a long time."

It's what we discovered in the middle of the night - TSA agents going away, and security guards taking over. It's 4.5 hours - every night - when an employee badge becomes an all-access pass.

Night after night, our hidden cameras captured what security experts tell us is a disaster waiting to happen.

The X-ray machines were off, the metal detectors were closed, and bags with unknown contents were carried to the secure side of the airport where the planes are.

We watched as a security guard let people with purses, coolers and suitcases
walk right through - bags unchecked.

Even more surprising, some of the people you trust to keep you safe planned it this way.

Larry Wansley is widely regarded as one of the nation's top airline security experts. "It's a frightening situation, I've just simply never seen anything like it," he said. "I really honestly have not."

He's the former head of security for American Airlines, and currently consults the U.S. Government and airports around the world. We brought him in to take a look at what we found.

"It is not security," he said. "It truly is not security. Anything can be going through there. I don't get it."

Larry watched for hours and saw the same thing we did - guys with huge backpacks showing their ID and walking through without ever opening their bags.

A flight attendant, with three suitcases in tow, flashed her badge and breezed by. A huge load of newspapers on a cart was also pulled right passed the guard and a floor cleaner was pushed by without any inspection. Even a guy with his bike just showed his ID and was able to ride through with his crate on the back, never checked.

Airport security expert Larry Wansley said this needs to be fixed immediately.

"You've got all sorts of items that are going into the secure part of an airport unchecked," he said. "I think that presents a very, very dangerous situation that can be exploited that can lead to disaster. That concerns me."

Lisa: Are there any reasons that the airport management could give you that could change your mind and make this acceptable?"

Larry: "I can't think of any."

Lisa: "We're essentially a ticking time bomb?"

Larry: "Bingo."


The Phoenix Airport was, indeed, a ticking security time bomb. Is the death of this woman related to these outrageous security lapses? Maybe the woman was screaming about the lack of security, and they silenced her to prevent her from going public with an eye-opening story...

The illusion of airport security

Airport security is worse than you think. Even the FAA knows that airport security is a complete joke. Once a year or so, the FAA's Inspector General conducts a test where they attempt to sneak fake explosives or weapons onto airplanes using undercover FAA agents. A few years ago, they made 450 attempts to sneak weapons through security at the San Francisco airport. They were only caught 4 times! Do the math: That's a whopping 99% success rate of sneaking weapons onto airplanes! That means for every 100 terrorists who try to sneak weapons onto airplanes, only one would get caught.

Even now in the post 9/11 era, it's remarkably easy to sneak bombs and weapons onto airplanes. FAA agents currently achieve a 30 percent or better success rate in their own testing, which means that even the FAA can sneak a bomb onto an airplane one third of the time! And that's even with all the tight security you see right now: The confiscation of water bottles, the random (illegal) searches of passengers, the racial profiling, the pat-downs, the B.S. no-fly passenger lists (which include the names of three-year-old infants), and everything else.

And guess what? The FAA has even been caught covering up sexual misconduct allegations of U.S. air marshals having sex with underage children overseas, oblivious to the inherent security risks created by such behavior (not to mention the ethical considerations). As reported in Insight on the News, March 25, 2002:

Steve Elson, a former Navy SEAL and former member of the FAA's elite and secret "Red Team" that conducted mock raids to test security at U.S. airports, tells INSIGHT that over the years he has been made aware of sexual exploitation of children by traveling U.S. aviation-security personnel. "I heard them talk about having sex with young girls" he says. "Some of them talked about how [the children] were hairless [in their pubic area]. It was disgusting. My impression is that the behavior was pretty well-known. It was kind of a joke."

What airport security?

As any intelligent person well realizes, airport security is a complete joke, and the people running it are idiots. Technically, they're armed idiots, and that makes them a danger to the safety of the citizens who are simply trying to fly from point A to point B without being treated like criminals or choked to death in their holding cells by angry airport police officers.

That's a strong accusation, of course -- the idea that airport security Nazis are a danger to the safety of U.S. citizens. But it's not nearly as strong (or ridiculous) as the accusations aimed at travelers. Essentially, we are all accused of being terrorists from the moment we set foot on airport property. We are treated like criminals, detained against our will, searched without probable cause, denied our rights to free speech and essentially kidnapped by airport security goons for as long as they care to mess with us. They wipe down our laptops and screen them for cocaine and explosives using high-end chromatography machines, and if we even dare mention that we are NOT a terrorist, that gives them the justification to arrest you for simply uttering the word "Terrorist!" (If you don't believe me, just try it at the airport and see what happens...)

Airport security squads have created a situation where we have to prove our innocence in order to simply board an airplane! We are presumed to be criminals from the moment we arrive, and only through a series of searches, scans and data mining operations are we even "allowed" to travel in a country that our own government continues to insist is "Free!" And even after going through all this, there's absolutely no way to know that somebody else didn't just sneak a bomb onto the airplane using the FAA's own tactics (which have a 30% success rate).

It's a fact: Airport security, as operated in the United States, does not make air travel safe. It does, however, keep the people in a state of constant fear. It's fascinating just how far the United States has devolved into a police state without the population bothering to question authority. The sheeple have given up their rights and freedoms, trading them in for the illusion of security, and as this latest incident with the 45-year-old mother at the Phoenix Airport now clearly demonstrates, arguing with airport police can ultimately get you killed. That's what happens in every police state, by the way: Law enforcement becomes a threat to the safety of the citizens.

To anyone who believes this woman actually committed suicide with a pair of handcuffs, I've got a bridge to sell ya... and a Bill of Rights, and a Constitution, and a "Free" nation, come to think of it. Barring some freak-of-nature occurrence in that holding cell that I can't even imagine (like maybe lightning struck her handcuffs and caused her to die), this is nothing other than a case of the law enforcement murder of an innocent woman who's only crime was missing her flight and screaming in public.

She will not, of course, be the last victim of Police State brutality. Anyone who questions authority these days is now at risk of being assaulted, beaten, kidnapped, tazed, detained and / or killed by the very people who claim to be protecting us from terrorists.

I just wonder: Who will protect us from the protectors? And, more importantly, who will protect us from the mind-numbed masses who have so easily surrendered their freedoms in exchange for the illusion of protection from fabricated fear?

First, they take away your rights, then your freedom, and then your water. And in the end, they might take your life, too. I pray for Carol Anne Gotbaum, her children and her family, and I pray that the people will wake up and find a way to peacefully take back their freedoms and rights in this country before more citizens become victims of overzealous police state security at our nation's airports.

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About the author:Mike Adams (aka the "Health Ranger") is the founding editor of NaturalNews.com, the internet's No. 1 natural health news website, now reaching 7 million unique readers a month.

In late 2013, Adams launched the Natural News Forensic Food Lab, where he conducts atomic spectroscopy research into food contaminants using high-end ICP-MS instrumentation. With this research, Adams has made numerous food safety breakthroughs such as revealing rice protein products imported from Asia to be contaminated with toxic heavy metals like lead, cadmium and tungsten. Adams was the first food science researcher to document high levels of tungsten in superfoods. He also discovered over 11 ppm lead in imported mangosteen powder, and led an industry-wide voluntary agreement to limit heavy metals in rice protein products to low levels by July 1, 2015.

In addition to his lab work, Adams is also the (non-paid) executive director of the non-profit Consumer Wellness Center (CWC), an organization that redirects 100% of its donations receipts to grant programs that teach children and women how to grow their own food or vastly improve their nutrition. Click here to see some of the CWC success stories.

With a background in science and software technology, Adams is the original founder of the email newsletter technology company known as Arial Software. Using his technical experience combined with his love for natural health, Adams developed and deployed the content management system currently driving NaturalNews.com. He also engineered the high-level statistical algorithms that power SCIENCE.naturalnews.com, a massive research resource now featuring over 10 million scientific studies.

Adams is well known for his incredibly popular consumer activism video blowing the lid on fake blueberries used throughout the food supply. He has also exposed "strange fibers" found in Chicken McNuggets, fake academic credentials of so-called health "gurus," dangerous "detox" products imported as battery acid and sold for oral consumption, fake acai berry scams, the California raw milk raids, the vaccine research fraud revealed by industry whistleblowers and many other topics.

Adams has also helped defend the rights of home gardeners and protect the medical freedom rights of parents. Adams is widely recognized to have made a remarkable global impact on issues like GMOs, vaccines, nutrition therapies, human consciousness.

In addition to his activism, Adams is an accomplished musician who has released ten popular songs covering a variety of activism topics.

Click here to read a more detailed bio on Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, at HealthRanger.com.

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