Onda Latina

The KUT Longhorn Radio Network Presents: Mexican American Experience Collection

Audio recordings including interviews, music, and informational programs related to the Mexican American community and their concerns in the series "The Mexican American Experience" and "A esta hora conversamos" from the Longhorn Radio Network, 1976-1982.

Nav: Home


Police Brutality
Program #

Social Issues
Armando Gutiérrez
Paul Rich
Nov 14, 1978

Police Brutality

In this lecture, Paul Rich, a civil rights attorney, analyzes the case of Rodolfo Santillan, who was killed while in police custody and discusses the problem of police brutality. Rich represented Santayan’s family in the case the brought against the two Robstown police officers who detained Santayan and struck him with a revolver, fatally breaking the skull of the college student and community activist. Rich explains that a jury acquitted the two officers on the ground that striking Santayan with the revolver did not constitute unreasonable force and resulted in death only because the victim’s skull was thinner than average. Rich then discusses the problems facing agencies who seek to prosecute cases of brutality. Rich argues that despite their noble intentions, such organizations do not respond fast enough to assist the families and communities affected by police brutality. They lack both the resources and priorities to meet their needs.

Rich also discusses the problems within the police that create conditions where brutality can occur. He explains that many rural police forces do not have the processing capabilities to train and guide new police officers. Rich does not think hiring more minorities will address the problem. He does believe the police needs more officers who are well-trained and thoroughly evaluated. He hopes that society can put police brutality in the past, but history does not seem to indicate that will happen. He concludes that a more informed and outraged populace can ensure that society holds police accountable for their actions.


Civil Rights
Constitutional Rights
Corpus Christi, Texas
Department of Justice
Emilio Chito Davila
Griffin Bell
Jimmy Carter
Jose Campos Torres
Laredo, Texas
League of United Latin American Citizens
Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund
Minority Police Presence
New York
Officer Garcia
Officer Schutte
Paul Rich
Police brutality
Police Brutality
Police training
Ricardo Morales
Robstown, Texas
Rodolfo Santillan
Ruben Salazar
San Antonio
Texas A & I
The Civil Rights Commission
The media
The University of Texas at Austin
Travis County Rural Aid Program
Voting Rights Act
William Mobley

Center for Mexican American Studies | Department of History | The Benson Latin American Collection

DIIA | © 2009 Liberal Arts Instructional Technology Services