"Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)
Elliott and the friends with whom he recorded in middle school in Texas (photo courtesy of Dan Pickering)
The Little Rock Police Department in Arkansas is facing a series of federal lawsuits, brought by families of victims fatally shot by police who allege that officers used excessive force. Of the three lawsuits, one involves the shooting of an unarmed 67-year-old African American by an off-duty cop, another involves the death of a 28-year-old mentally ill man, Landris Hawkins, who was shot dead after he threatened to kill himself with a knife when police responded to a 9/11 call from his grandmother.
The Hawkins family lawsuit claims the officers failed to follow LRPD rules governing use of force and dealing with mentally ill men and women. It also alleges the force, under police chief Stuart Thomas, has a widespread practice of tolerating violations of rules, allowing acts of excessive force and covering up or disregarding allegations of excessive force.
… [The LRPD] has rules governing potentially dangerous situations such as dealing with mentally ill people, when to use deadly force and indeed, when to use force in general. Critics say that the system is broken and urgently needs fixing, in particular the internal investigations of police killings.”We think instances of police misconduct are likely to continue as long as matters such as these are not subject to an appropriate review process,” said lawyer Michael Laux, who, along with his partner David Eisbrouch, of Balkin and Eisbrouch LLC, is representing all three families.
Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email email@example.com.More Natasha Lennard.
Heatmiser publicity shot (L-R: Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson, Neil Gust, Elliott Smith) (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott and JJ Gonson (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
"Stray" 7-inch, Cavity Search Records (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott's Hampshire College ID photo, 1987
Elliott with "Le Domino," the guitar he used on "Roman Candle" (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Full "Roman Candle" record cover (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott goofing off in Portland (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Heatmiser (L-R: Elliott Smith, Neil Gust, Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson)(courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
The Greenhouse Sleeve -- Cassette sleeve from Murder of Crows release, 1988, with first appearance of Condor Avenue (photo courtesy of Glynnis Fawkes)