Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by demosthenes, Feb 13, 2018.
From the article (quote and link in OP):
Where'd you get that?
In Afghanistan especially, everyone has a gun. You get trained on how to read body language and how to maneuver yourself out of their firing line as an added protection and to give you additional time to decide whether you need to fire or not.
It's one huge reason I'm so critical of how our police are trained: why on earth do citizens in Iraq and Afghanistan have more safeguards than we do here??
But that's not what happened here. The officer in question saw that the guy was not waving the gun around and was not threatening, so he made the choice to try to talk him the rest of the way out of it.
Seems like a very rational choice in context of what he saw.
The second two OTOH... cops with guns as to surgeons with knives... the solution is always the knife for most surgeons and always the gun for those two cops... who are the ones that should have been disciplined at a minimum, if not fired.
The guy wasn't waving the gun around or threatening anybody...it's why the police officer chose not to shoot in the first place.
Non-threatening? The guy was armed.
The point I am trying to make is broader than this situation. Maybe this guy wasn't going to shoot and just seemed suicidal. Maybe he was crazy and might have shot. Maybe the guy made the right decision in this situation, but it turns out badly in another situation. Nobody wants to address the scenario where the cop gets shot because the suspect snaps. Maybe this guy is an excellent cop, but how do train the rest of them that don't have this guy's ESP? That's why they have policies. Should he have been fired over it? Maybe not. But you all are delusional if you think suddenly cops are going to start talking down gun wielding suspects en masse.
We’re missing a lot of facts here. The armed suspect (why is his race relvant?) was told to drop the gun and did not. Im not saying the officer should have fired. But the issue is whether he acted consistent with procedures.
Which is why the law says that the officer has to have a reasonable belief that the suspect posed an imminent threat to justify use of force.
Note (and this is extremely impt) that it doesn't mean the officer has to eliminate EVERY possible "what if" scenario out there. It involves using one's experience and training to make the *best* decision. If the guy wasn't threatening anyone, wasn't waving the weapon around, and wasn't angry or behaving in a confrontational manner...then the officer's interpretation seems to be the most reasonable way to handle the situation. Not to just shoot and justify it after the fact.
And my point is that if calling in a suicidal person with a gun results in an execution by policy, the policy is seriously screwed up.
There has to be a better way. Too often it seems that people with military training who become LEOs although they are trained killers, have more respect for life and are less likely to shoot at the drop of a hat.
The respective training and discipline these people get needs to be examined and learned from. IMO.
So? One is lawfully allowed to possess firearms in this country.
This has nothing to do with the shoot. This about a cop wrongly getting fired.
This is tangentially related, but friends of mine have tried suits where the cops were called by the family of a suicidal individual to help him. The cops get there, and the guy has a knife and is threatening to kill himself, so the cops shoot and kill the guy.
It strikes me as ironic. It also strikes me that people will stop calling the cops for help with suicidal family members if that's how the cops react to those situations. So what do we do? We train police on how to deescalate situations where they encounter a mentally ill person in crisis. That means we stop trying to justify their conduct. Being a police officer is a difficult job, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't hold them to a high standard.
Can one lawfully refuse to drop them when imstructed to by police?
Not sure, actually. My suspicion would be "no"...but it is more of a gray area than one would think, because I would think cops have to have a lawful reason to request a weapon to be dropped too.
Criminal law is not my area of practice, so I'm not aware how courts treat the issue.
$175,000 - I wouldn't really call that much of a "blow" against the shoot-first culture - unless the thread was intended as sarcasm.
A better blow would be to have the S.O.B. who fired him, get the axe himself, and then install this guy as the new police chief (or at least fully reinstate him in his old job with the $175,000 in his pocket).
Kind of a crazy story with all the "bad cops" that get protected and covered for, and here we have a guy get fired for exercising a little common sense judgement to try and diffuse the situation, which is what most of us would have hoped some of these trigger happy cops would use.
1. Simple. Really. If that’s what you took from my posts or posting history you have understood very little of what I have said. Both my wife and I have worked in the criminal justice system, have had extensive experience and interactions with law enforcement, and one of my degrees is directly on point. I think my position is far more nuanced than “simple.”
2. Your position that we’d have no police volunteers is just simply wrong. Our soldiers operate under more restrictive rules of engagement than our police do domestically and we have a large volunteer military force.
3. Black and white is much closer to the current police culture, training, and policy in the case of the situation. I am advocating for increased deescalation training in all situations, increased training when dealing with mentally impaired, reduction of emphasis on firearm training and marksmanship, etc. It’s easy to see priorities based on time allocation and spending. Our police training is shorter than other industrialized nations and a large portion is devoted to lethal action. Gun proliferation aside, it’s no wonder we have such disparate outcomes. When you read about German officers being chased around a car by a knife wielding man and eventually subduing him with no loss of life you understand there are alternatives to how we police. Nuance and discretion is required. If you’re not taught to look for EVERY available alternative before using lethal force why would you do anything else?
It’s precedent in which it may encourage other officers to go against the culture, and may help push police departments to re-evaluate their training and policies.
The dollar figure is immaterial here. It’s the outcome in which the department was willing to settle because it recognized an outsized risk that is important. Maybe this will be just a blip on the radar. Maybe this will simply be a learning situation for other agencies to be more circumspect. Or maybe it is the first movement toward correcting an institutional problem.
What I think is needed is a VERY GOOD non-lethal "Bad Ass" weapon for the police...AND encourage them to use it first.
Think Star Trek - "Set on STUN"
Did you read what the cops said about his demeanor? Sounds like the first cop on the scene was trying to save his life and get him to surrender ... the next two cops just wanted to waste him.
We dont actually know what happened. All we get from the article is what the Cop who sued and his attorney said happened. Of course he was a “non-threat” in their opinion.
And yes. If a suspect is holding a firearm and refuses to follow instructions to drop his weapon, “non-threat” sounds absurd to me. That doesnt mean he should
have been shot. Im not saying that. But it seems like a fair assumption that he was a threat.