Police footage shows full incident of Rose Sanders’ arrest

Published 9:23 pm Thursday, July 19, 2018

Sen. Hank Sanders’ wife, Rose Sanders, was arrested for taking campaign signs from what Selma Police Chief Spencer Collier called private property.

Over the past few days, Sen. Sanders has taken to numerous platforms to defend his wife’s actions.

Sen. Sanders claimed city employees were taking down Probate Judge-elect Jimmy Nunn’s campaign signs while ignoring Nunn’s opponent Nicholas Switzer’s signs.

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Sen. Sanders claims the alleged removal of Nunn’s signs is a giant conspiracy to keep an African American from being the next Probate Judge of Dallas County. If that was the case, it didn’t work very well as Nunn handily defeated Switzer Tuesday in the runoff election.

Sen. Sanders also criticized the Selma Police Department for making the arrest of Rose Sanders for allegedly stealing campaign signs an not working to solve more serious crimes, such as murder, in the city. As far as the argument that this arrest was made while murders go unsolved, Collier has claimed that more than 80 percent of all homicides have been solved, and that stealing campaign signs is still illegal.

“In Alabama, a police officer must witness a misdemeanor offense to make an arrest,” Collier said in a previous Selma Times-Journal interview. “A complainant would have to sign a warrant if probable cause existed.”

Dash cam footage released from the SPD detective, and viewed by The Selma Times-Journal, disproves the majority of the claims made by Rose Sanders.

Her 11-year-old grandchild was not left alone. Footage shows a bystander, and Rose Sanders supporter, taking care of the grandchild.

Sen. Sanders said was denied his request to speak to his wife, who he said he was also representing as her attorney, after she was processed at the Selma Police Department, but additional video footage shows Sen. Sanders having a conversation with his wife in which she then said she would refuse to bond out on the charges.

The incident report documenting the event reveals that the detective made contact with Rose Sanders twice, even asking her to return the campaign signs she allegedly took, before arresting her the third time.

Sen. Sanders’ claim that his wife was simply evening the score by taking Switzer’s signs is disappointing. If indeed representatives of the city, on city time, were taking Nunn’s signs, that does not justify what Rose Sanders is claimed to have done. It is not up to her, or anyone else, to play judge and jury.

After reviewing the video, we believe the police did their job and handled the situation justly. Fortunately nobody was injured in the pursuit that led to Rose Sanders’ arrest. We can all be thankful for that.

But if a crime is committed, protocol should be followed no matter what the crime is, or who it is committing it.