John Harris: Plays Music in His Front Lawn, Gets a Double Dose of Taser

Categories: Crime

thebaddrugs.jpg
The Bad Drugs' drummer was arrested and charged for assault and bodily injury to a public servant.
The Bad Drugs, fresh off a rollicking performance at Big Star Bar, were too pumped to let the night end on Saturday, May 5.

After leaving the Heights-area drinkery, the band headed to the drummer's house on Washington Avenue, where the garage-punk group would play an encore performance...in the front yard.

This open-air hoedown wasn't out of the ordinary, says Bad Drugs drummer John Harris, who dwells in a house that's flanked by the old Walter's and catawampus to Pearl Bar.

If that is par for the course, what happened 15 minutes later was a freaking disqualification.

A few songs into their impromptu set around 10:30 p.m., band members noticed a Houston Police Department squad car parked nearby so they stopped playing. When Harris went inside his house, he didn't notice that two police officers had approached two of his bandmates and requested Harris's presence outside.

Unsatisfied with the amount of time it took, one officer intercepted Harris, who had walked to the front steps of the house. "He wanted to see my ID," Harris recalls. "I told him I didn't have to because he was on private property."

That's when, Harris says, the officer came at him with a Taser.

Harris says, "I panicked so I jumped back. That's when I got tased twice. Somehow, it didn't incapacitate me so I got back up and slammed the door as hard as I could. That's when I saw that the officer's arm had been caught in the door.

"When I realized, 'Oh my God, I just assaulted an officer,' I surrendered."

Harris would be arrested and charged with assault and bodily injury to a public servant, a third-degree felony. Citing too much evidence against him (i.e., an officer's front-door-slammed limb), Harris accepted deferred adjudication and received two years of felony probation.

Harris's roommate was also arrested (and later let go) for violating the noise ordinance, which has caused quite a hubbub in Houston since the law was overhauled last October.

Harris feels like the insanity shouldn't have happened in the first place.

"We've had music inside and outside of the house plenty of times," says Harris. "The cops had never stopped by before. I'm not sure why things happened the way that it did."


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Harris County Criminal Courts

1201 Franklin St., Houston, TX

Category: General

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22 comments
non geographic numbers
non geographic numbers

 We all know that bad drugs are really bad for our health. And this can cause to us bigger problem if we caught using this. Because this is prohibited.

LOL
LOL

everyone should be allowed to blast music at night, mouth off to cops, not present ID, and run from cops... the world would a better place.. /s

Evan
Evan

Why doesn't HPD taser people for violating pollution laws that don't relate to noise?

Agingpunk
Agingpunk

I am no lawyer...but I think that using a taser on somebody who is not threatening physical harm is overstepping.

VHF
VHF

Does The Bad Drugs not read the Houston Press? Noise ordinance has been a constant issue on this site and in the community.

TOLDYA
TOLDYA

Side walk lawyering at its finest, should have complied with the ID request.

SlashS
SlashS

Yeah you shouldn't blast music at night. It's ok if The lot, Pearl bar, Salt Bar, The Drinkery, Walter's,  Rebels Honky Tonk, Rooseavelt, Sanctuary, Taps or any of the other dozens of bars this house is nestled between blast music, because they have stationary equipment and can do it louder and better. 

Gonzo
Gonzo

If they resist, they will.

Gonzo
Gonzo

You are only hearing one side of the story, obviously.

fdsa
fdsa

I've been doing this since the beginning of the year with no problems and over 100+ people at my parties. The goal of our parties and shows was to share our love of live music, and expose the sheltered washington crowd to new music, and try to get them excited about local bands and events. 

Jacqikill
Jacqikill

Only one of us had ID on our person. Everyone else had set there stuff down in the house it's hard to give an ID when it's not on you.

Wyatt
Wyatt

 The irony is by refuting his legal interpretation with one of your own, you are "sidewalk lawyering" as well. Unless you're actually a lawyer. Are you a lawyer?

TOLDYA
TOLDYA

As a matter of fact, yes. Thanks for asking though.

mc
mc

Now we know.  Definitely not a lawyer.

whatevs
whatevs

what would you have done if an aggressive officer came at you with a tazer out ready to fist fight you? Fight or flight instinct kicks in then. Perhaps if Houston had better trained police that don't escalate non violent situations into something else, this wouldn't happen. 

Wyatt
Wyatt

 1. Thank you for showing the female members of my nuclear family some love.

2. There is no way you're a lawyer.

TOLDYA
TOLDYA

Wyatt, thanks for being so observant. It was intentional, this afternoon there will be plenty of "o's". As like many other times when I'm giving your mom and sister. The "Rear Admiral" and "The Dirty Sanchez".

Wyatt
Wyatt

 Yeah, agreed. But the 'o' and the 'a' aren't even near each other. Are you really a criminal lawyer who can't spell "question"?

TOLDYA
TOLDYA

Well Wyatt, the law is very clear. However, 10:30pm  is not very late and there is a cryptic at best Noise Ordinance. I would have identified myself, I would have probably been drinking and hope for a little Quid Pro Quo, on the officers part. I don't think this is the whole story being told here, I also don't think pulling out a taser was the best way to interact with a citizen, that you were looking to be cooperative (that is not posing an immediate threat). To answer your questian Criminal Law.

Wyatt
Wyatt

No shit? What kind of law?

Then you probably know that in Texas you're not required to identify yourself until you've been lawfully detained. Would have been smarter to just show ID, sure, but at the point in this guy's story when he was asked for it, it wasn't legally required.

Sidewalk is hot today.

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