At Charlie Parker Square, one cop's aggressive policing has some residents crying foul – and they're calling in his past for backup 

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 "If you get ugly with him ..." she says, "he's going to do his job."

Griddine once attended a Parker Square tenants' meeting to address questions about the trespass list. He explained the process of getting a banned visitor removed from the list, an appeals process overseen by Universal Management. A woman there, whose nephew had been banned from Parker Square, had a question: "What if they're dead?" 

After the meeting, Griddine and his partners went over the list, crossing out the names of 14 homicide victims.


Nobody hates the trespass list more than Kenisha Batton. But then, most people don't spend three weeks in jail for trespassing.

Batton is a big woman with a big personality, her hair cut close to her head. A couple of years ago, after losing her job as a certified nurse's assistant, Batton moved in with her mom at Parker Square. She's 32 but still calls her mother "mommy."

Batton claims that she first encountered Griddine as a teenager, when she was living in a nearby apartment building. It was summertime, and the officer made a pass at her, she says. But their real battle began on Mother's Day in 2009.

Batton's family was having a barbecue. A family friend, 14 at the time, had already been banned from Parker Square after crashing a stolen car near 10th Street and the Paseo. But the friend ignored the ban and showed up at the barbecue.

Griddine was cruising by when he spotted the girl. He made a beeline to arrest her. Batton blocked his path and ushered the girl into her mother's house.

"He said I was hindering his arrest," she recalls.

It was more than that, Griddine says. Batton also lied about being listed on her mother's lease (she wasn't). He looked up the license plate on the car he'd seen Batton driving and discovered $5,000 in unpaid parking tickets.

Later that day, Griddine spotted the friend outside Batton's house. "When I came back outside to get her and let her in, this time he didn't want her," Batton says. "He wanted me. I hadn't gotten a chance to get dressed. He arrested me on Mother's Day 2009 with nothing but a T-shirt on."

Batton left jail that day with a ticket and a court date. Meanwhile, the clock was ticking on her unpaid traffic tickets. By July 2009, there was a warrant with her name on it. So on July 5, Griddine arrested her and informed her that he was placing her on the trespass list.

Batton says she didn't know she was banned. But Parker Square's policy is clear: A No Trespass Order can be given verbally or in writing, and "failure to provide ... written notice shall not make an oral No Trespass Order invalid." So Batton kept returning. She racked up five municipal trespassing charges between last October and February of this year, court records show.

She went to court on February 2. Judge Leonard Hughes III flipped through Batton's paperwork, heard her "not guilty" plea, and sentenced her to 180 days in jail on each charge — an unusually harsh sentence for trespassing, lawyers say, even if the sentences were meant to be served concurrently. As guards led her to jail, she says, she was crying so hard, she couldn't breathe.

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