August 19, 2014

St. Louis police shoot and kill a man who yelled "Shoot me, kill me now."

This happened today, not far from Ferguson.

ADDED: Was this a "suicide by cop" situation? Did the knife-wielding man think that the police were so intimidated by the criticism after the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson that it had become possible to taunt the police in an exciting new way? Perhaps the police should have shown immense restraint here and even risked taking some knife-slashings for the sake of some good PR.

But I await a full, factual account.

AND: From the NYT report, a 21-year-old citizen is quoted saying: "Even if this is a legitimate shooting, they are going to capitalize on this and try to use it for their martial law agenda." But it must also be true that even if this is a legitimate shooting, those who are protesting the police will try to use it for their agenda.

110 comments:

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Just in time. I'm sure the looting pickings were getting a little slim in Ferguson.

Larry J said...

Should this be considered a case of "suicide by cop" or filed under "be careful what you ask for, you just might get it?"

traditionalguy said...

Suicide by police is a common thing that all police are routinely faced with, usually from a drug/alcohol fueled bender in a self pity feeling person that doesn't buy their on gun.

Lyssa said...

I'm surprised that it's taken this long.

The amount of attention over this issue is bound to bring the crazies out. And when I say crazies, I mean certifiably mentally ill, which I imagine this person was. Sad, even if justified.

Martha said...

Michael Brown is reported to have taunted Darren Wilson with "what you gonna do? Shoot me?" as he bum rushed the cop.

The public should now know the answer is YES!

MadisonMan said...

is reported to have

A phrase I very rarely believe.

Right up there with It is believed that I always see in the Brit Papers.

Revenant said...

Had the guy charged at them with a knife, the police would report that he charged at them with a knife. Had the guy been standing still fifty feet away with a knife, the police would report that he charged at them with a knife.

Police reports are worthless. Police lie all the time, just like everybody else.

If there was video, we wouldn't need to speculate. But for some reason, we have plenty of money for military equipment for cops, but not enough for something that would actually help convict the guilty AND protect the innocent.

Revenant said...

Michael Brown is reported to have taunted Darren Wilson with "what you gonna do? Shoot me?" as he bum rushed the cop. The public should now know the answer is YES!

A friend of mine mentioned that to me a couple days ago.

My response was "if a cop rushes at me -- with his club out, say -- am I allowed to gun him down"?

Turns out "that's totally different". Although why it is totally different is unclear.

Bobber Fleck said...

"Did the knife-wielding man think that the police were so intimidated by the criticism after the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson that it had become possible to taunt the police in an exciting new way?"

Never assign a motive when simple stupidity is a plausible explanation.

Humperdink said...

There will no rioting in St Louis - the Missouri governor is sending an Asian-American police commander this time to keep the peace.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Revenant said...

If there was video, we wouldn't need to speculate. But for some reason, we have plenty of money for military equipment for cops, but not enough for something that would actually help convict the guilty AND protect the innocent.


That is the most important question in this whole affair. Why aren't police equipped with audio and video equipment? Because they don't want to be.

A neighbor is a cop and he bought video equipment himself. A little camera that sits on his shoulder. He says it once helped him with a complaint. The woman said "I wouldnt of said that if I knew he had a camera!"

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

To clarify my contradictory statements. Good cops want the protection of audio video recording. Bad cops don't want it because they have too much to hide.

Revenant said...

That is the most important question in this whole affair. Why aren't police equipped with audio and video equipment? Because they don't want to be.

At a bare minimum: an under-barrel camera that automatically starts recording when the gun is drawn, and continues recording until it is holstered. Not exactly rocket-science technology.

Hell, you could go one better, and have an automatic alert go out to the dispatcher when a gun is drawn -- stream the video to other police heading to the area to respond. There are lots of possibilities. The problem is that the main interest of the police -- like all other government agencies -- is their own power and authority, not their ability to do their jobs well.

rhhardin said...

Blacks as portrayed by themselves and the media will once again seek to prove that they're as dumb as rocks.

The performance is aimed at soap opera women, who rule American politics by way of audience ratings.

Remember, the media. They explain stuff to you.

Alex said...

It's never wise to rush a cop.

Alex said...

No doubt Crack thinks bumrushing cops is A-OK behavior.

Yancey Ward said...

I hear the knife-wielder was planning to go to culinary school and was a lovable scamp.

Carol said...

There seems to be two "bumrushes" in the Michael Brown story.

DanTheMan said...

The solution is obvious, and no technology is needed:
Require all police officers to be black, as apparently black officers shooting people does not lead to rioting.

Problem solved.

Anonymous said...

No need to wait for the full, factual account.

By definition, it will show that the cops were in the right.

Sigivald said...

"Good PR"?

I expect cops to risk their lives (some) in the line of duty, and take risks with their own safety to avoid killing suspects where it's sensible and plausible.

But I don't expect them to get slashed to the bone by a knife for the sake of optics.

Alan said...

Wow! So let's put a few cops in the hospital or the morgue to show they have compassion and restraint. Spoken like a slip and fall ambulance chaser not an eminent and redoubtable professor of law at my beloved alma mater.

SomeoneHasToSayIt said...

I was kind of angry when I heard that the Washington Redskins players, in a Mike Brown solidarity move, had run out of the tunnel with their hands raised in an I-surrender gesture.

Then I realized that all I had to do to have a completely different reaction, is to imagine that, as they did so, they were shouting "Next time, do THIS, fool!"

And now I support their move.

It's that easy.

David said...

"It was not clear how many shots were fired, and [St. Louis Police Chief} Dotson did not disclose the race of the man who was shot or of the officers. Both officers opened fire, and no one else was injured, Dotson said."

Well, until we know the race, this is meaningless, right?


SteveR said...

Doesn't make sense to test your rights by going at a cop with a gun. Plenty of places you might get a chance, however slight, but not that one. But "rights" and "sense" aren't the issues here, however much we talk about them.

William said...

This happened a few years back in NYC. Some crazy person stood on top a store awning and shouted crazy things. The cops were called. The supervising officer on the scene shot the crazy man with a taser. The man fell off the awning, cracked his skull, and died. The officer received a barrage of criticism for this move. He was not formally charged with any crime, but, some time later, he committed suicide. His wife said he was despondent and had fretted over the incident.......There you have the only equitable solution to the current mess. Every time an office kills a suspect in ambiguous circumstances, he should commit suicide. I'm sure all these demonstrations would stop if Officer Wilson would commit suicide.

tim in vermont said...

"I await a full factual account."

I hope you are not putting off other stuff while you wait.

chickelit said...

Perhaps the police should have shown immense restraint here and even risked taking some knife-slashings for the sake of some good PR.

Seriously? WTF? Isn't that like saying that the Israelis should risk some Palestinian rocket hits for the sake of good PR. Bad call, Althouse.

Tari said...

St. Louis City police vs. St. Louis County police: same neighborhood, different planet.

Freeman Hunt said...

At least the tip for avoiding such an incident is straightforward:

"Among others thing you might do to minimize your risk of being shot by the police, the foremost is this: do not request that the police shoot you."

chillblaine said...

The New Black Panthers, CPUSA and their cohorts are hoping for their Kent State moment. Jay-Z and Beyonce could write the song.

chickelit said...

Althouse wrote: Perhaps the police should have shown immense restraint here and even risked taking some knife-slashings for the sake of some good PR.

I wonder if Althouse would write the same if the cop were black and the crazy loon were white? Why should any cop turn the other cheek? Being a Christian is not a job requirement for being a cop.

Revenant said...

Every time an office kills a suspect in ambiguous circumstances, he should commit suicide. I'm sure all these demonstrations would stop if Officer Wilson would commit suicide.

When a policeman kills someone in ambiguous circumstances, he has to deal with potential guilty feelings.

When a non-policeman kills someone in ambiguous circumstances, he gets charged with murder. For that matter, when a non-policeman kills someone in clearly-defensive circumstances, he gets charged with murder, if the victim was someone the police care about for personal or political reasons.

Brando said...

I wonder if the peaceful protesters in Ferguson understand now what it is like for Tea Partiers to have nuts show up at their rallies and make everyone else look bad by association.

Nothing makes people more sensitive to police injustice than looting and rioting.

chickelit said...

You've ignored William's larger point: that any degree of contrition would not stop what's going on in Ferguson night after night. It's a revenge fantasy being played out -- one that has simmered for decades. The Brown killing was a catalyst, but that tipping has been past and the thermodynamics are all downhill.

jr565 said...

"Perhaps the police should have shown immense restraint here and even risked taking some knife-slashings for the sake of some good PR."

um, no. Getting stabbed is not worth PR.

Brando said...

No matter what your dealings with the cops--even if you're subject to unlawful arrest--the first and foremost thing you must do is make sure you aren't posing a threat to anyone (especially the cop). You may have at worst a few run ins with the police each year--the typical cop likely makes several arrests each week, and knows the odds are he'll have the bad luck of arresting a violent crazy bastard eventually. You want to make sure he doesn't think you'll be that bastard.

It doesn't excuse bad behavior by the police, but if you don't follow that one rule you'll be lucky to get by with minor injuries.

jr565 said...

Revenant wrote:My response was "if a cop rushes at me -- with his club out, say -- am I allowed to gun him down"?

Turns out "that's totally different". Although why it is totally different is unclear.

do you enforce the laws of the state? Then its a different scenario.
Why is the cop charging you? Because you're resisting arrest?

Richard Dolan said...

That a cop would shoot a knife-wielding person coming at him is understandable. But the situation calls for shooting-to-incapacitate, rather than to kill. Alas, so many cops are terrible shots -- can't hit anything accurately, let alone a moving target. In NYC, if you ever see a cop draw his gun, duck immediately -- the cops are notoriously bad at marksmanship, to the point of being a hazard. And if they shoot and kill a bystander by accident, the DA will indict the perp who caused the cop to draw his gun for murder. Someone has to be blamed, after all.

It would be far better if the cops junked all the high tach military toys, and focused on mastering basic skills.

chickelit said...

Revenant wrote: My response was "if a cop rushes at me -- with his club out, say -- am I allowed to gun him down"?

In a combat situation you are "allowed" to do so -- or at least with partisan impunity: your side won't punish you. But in a law enforcement is not a war scenario -- yet. The officer is vested with certain rights that you don't have. For example, in a more trivial example, to ignore a parking ticket. If you want to change the laws the cop is enforcing, you're welcome to work through other channels.

chickelit said...

It would be far better if the cops junked all the high tach military toys, and focused on mastering basic skills.

Without a better autopsy, I can make a case that the cop who shot Brown was a pretty good marksman.

John said...

First thing I thought of was that it might be our very own Crack Emcee.

Then I remembered that he is supposed to be a couple thousand miles away in SF.

OTOH, he has not shown up in this thread either.

Crack, are you OK?

John Henry

John said...

"How we'd cover Ferguson if it happened in another country:

FERGUSON — Chinese and Russian officials are warning of a potential humanitarian crisis in the restive American province of Missouri, where ancient communal tensions have boiled over into full-blown violence.

"We must use all means at our disposal to end the violence and restore calm to the region," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in comments to an emergency United Nations Security Council session on the America crisis.

The crisis began a week ago in Ferguson, a remote Missouri village that has been a hotbed of sectarian tension. State security forces shot and killed an unarmed man, which regional analysts say has angered the local population by surfacing deep-seated sectarian grievances. Regime security forces cracked down brutally on largely peaceful protests, worsening the crisis.

"we can and should support moderate forces who can bring stability to America"

http://www.vox.com/2014/8/15/6005587/ferguson-satire-another-country-russia-china

Much more, all funny, and a bit scary, at the link.

What is scary is that we actually believe the news published in the papers and TV etc. If reporters can't tell the difference between disposable ear plugs and rubber bullets, why should we trust them with anything more substantive? Or anything at all, for that matter.

Yet we do.

John Henry

John said...

In the Vox article they refer to Missouri as a province. Since we are the only country made up of states, with all that means, I can understand why most of the rest of the world doesn't get us. Sad that Vox doesn't either.

I know, Brazil, Mexico and some other countries call their provinces "states". But they are not states. A state is a sovereign entity, as were the 13 original sovereign and independent countries (states) that formed the original United States.

Not the United counties, provinces, shires, sectors or anything else.

States.

With all that the word meant at the time and still does.

John Henry

garage mahal said...

Without a better autopsy, I can make a case that the cop who shot Brown was a pretty good marksman.

4 shots in the arm indicates a frightened, emasculated white male [probably conservative] emptying his clip wildly into a much more [masculine] unarmed black male. It fits the profile.

John said...

Brando said:

No matter what your dealings with the cops--even if you're subject to unlawful arrest--the first and foremost thing you must do is make sure you aren't posing a threat to anyone (especially the cop).

Amen, brother, amen.

I would say that in addition to making sure you do not pose a threat, it is even more important that the cop not perceive you as posing a threat.

Your point is excellent and I have said it a number of time.

My son and some buddies, when in HS, were making a movie in the back yard. They were dressed up like ninjas, faces covered etc, and had paintball and bb guns.

Some neighbor who didn't recognize them, called the cops and they sent a car around.

It took me a day or so to get my heart back to normal. Had one of those kids turned around too quickly, or pointed a gun at the cop, the cop would have reacted quickly. One or more of the kids might have gotten shot.

Fortunately, that didn't happen. The kids explained what they were doing and the cop went on his way.

Cops have a tough enough job without doing anything to make it more stressful.

John Henry

JPS said...

Richard Dolan:

"That a cop would shoot a knife-wielding person coming at him is understandable. But the situation calls for shooting-to-incapacitate, rather than to kill."

I'm curious: How would you shoot to incapacitate, immediately and reliably - but not kill?

Not saying it's impossible, but it's a tall order. And a cop who can't do as you suggest is not necessarily a terrible shot.

JPS said...

garage mahal:

"4 shots in the arm indicates a frightened, emasculated white male [probably conservative] emptying his clip wildly into a much more [masculine] unarmed black male."

Or it indicates a shooter aiming for center mass but jerking the trigger a little.

This has been known to happen to shooters of widely varying ethnicity, gender, political affiliation, and levels of sexual security, when they rush their shots for whatever reason. But based on the words "emptying his clip," I'm going to guess you take a certain pride in not knowing such things.

chickelit said...

Garage Mahal wrote: 4 shots in the arm indicates a frightened, emasculated white male [probably conservative] emptying his clip wildly into a much more [masculine] unarmed black male. It fits the profile.

Can I quote you? I'm thinkingof writing a blog post at Lem's about the precision and accuracy of the shots.

William said...

Congrats to garage mahal for, in the absence of crack, keeping up Crack's fine spirit racial harmony...,,Only someone with garage's keen eye for superior masculinity could properly appreciate the tactful way Micharl Brown negotiated his disagreement with the store clerk. Now that's a real man.

garage mahal said...

I'm thinking of writing a blog post at Lem's about the precision and accuracy of the shots.

The perfect place to write about frightened white males?

garage mahal said...

I'm curious: How would you shoot to incapacitate, immediately and reliably - but not kill?

No other options available here? Why do they need to be shot and killed? You wouldn't do that to a retarded problem child or a drunk uncle at a summer picnic, right? Jesus Christ.

William said...

If the officer had approached Brown with the same deference and politesse exhibited by that store clerk, then this whole ugly incident could have been avoided.

chickelit said...

Perhaps garage thinks cops should holster only tasers. It would be a cooler, non violent world if both cops and criminals only carried tasers. Maybe burden the cop with sizing up whether a lunatic is carrying a gun, a taser, a knife, or nothing at all.

chickelit said...

garage mahal said...
The perfect place to write about frightened white males?

Stop channeling Meade (at Lem's).

Alex said...

garage - you know what? Fuck off idiot. I'm sick and tired of your endless defense of fucking criminals.

JPS said...

Garage:

"No other options available here? Why do they need to be shot and killed? You wouldn't do that to a retarded problem child or a drunk uncle at a summer picnic, right? Jesus Christ."

The premise of Richard Dolan's comment, which I didn't quote earlier:

"That a cop would shoot a knife-wielding person coming at him is understandable"

We were discussing "knife-wielding person coming at him". I was not referring to a retarded problem child or a drunk uncle at a summer picnic. I was assuming for the sake of discussion an assailant with the intent and the ability to kill. I admit I have no idea whether the deceased in this story did; I was asking more generally.

In this hypothetical, if you're the person being charged, I'd say you have two options: Shoot to stop (whether the assailant survives or not is incidental), or allow yourself to suffer very grave injury or death. If you have a third option, I'd be most interested to know it.

I do not understand how the option Richard Dolan suggests would work.

Ever read Jonathan Haidt? You remind me of his findings, because you're really not very good at stating an opponent's position neutrally, without distortion, before proceeding to argue against it.

chickelit said...

Ever read Jonathan Haidt? You remind me of his findings, because you're really not very good at stating an opponent's position neutrally, without distortion, before proceeding to argue against it.

Besides supporting the Packers, garage has been wrong (and in the distinct minority) on most every topic discussed here in my memory, and I've been reading Althouse for several years. He's just contrarian by nature. He is a real person though --I spoke to him on the phone once. Get him talking about beer, fishing, Hendrix and few other topics he never brings up and he's OK.

garage mahal said...

Get him talking about beer, fishing, Hendrix and few other topics he never brings up and he's OK.

All I want to do is groove you

[Keep that music playin]

"Keep That Music Playin'"

Revenant said...

No matter what your dealings with the cops--even if you're subject to unlawful arrest--the first and foremost thing you must do is make sure you aren't posing a threat to anyone (especially the cop).

That's true in the sense that the statement "when facing a rabid dog, the first and foremost thing you should do is not get bitten".

Which is to say that it is the best way to minimize the chance of you personally being harmed, but it doesn't actually do anything to help with the larger problem.

exhelodrvr1 said...

So you're equating police to rabid dogs?

Revenant said...

Without a better autopsy, I can make a case that the cop who shot Brown was a pretty good marksman

He fired a minimum of six rounds at a 6-foot target from 30 feet away or less and only scored one good hit. That's pretty bad.

exhelodrvr1 said...

Revenant,
You try shooting a pistol after struggling with someone, then chasing them on foot, with a broken bone in your face. While they are charging you. See how well you shoot.

Revenant said...

So you're equating police to rabid dogs?

How would you describe someone or something who might lash out at you violently if you don't proactively convince them you're innocuous? That's the scenario posed by the comment I was replying to.

I'm so tired of hearing what a hard job cops have. There are tens of millions of Americans who worker harder, more dangerous jobs for less pay and fewer benefits -- construction workers, farmers, fishermen, truck drivers, etc. Nobody thinks those occupations should enjoy rights above and beyond those accorded to "normal" people.

Revenant said...

You try shooting a pistol after struggling with someone, then chasing them on foot, with a broken bone in your face. While they are charging you. See how well you shoot.

My point, silly, was that calling a guy a "marksman" because he got at most one good hit out of six shots doesn't make a lot of sense.

Also, running after somebody with your gun out is retarded behavior. Guns are ranged weapons. If the guy's behavior merits shooting him, stand still and shoot him. If it doesn't, put the fucking gun back in the holster before running around. What was the plan if he'd *caught* the guy? Wrestle him one-armed?

exhelodrvr1 said...

Rabid dogs are very unpredictable, police are not. Rabid dogs are a danger to all. Police are not. See what I did there?

chickelit said...

Anybody know how many shots total were fired (including misses)?

How many shots "is emptying his clip"?

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Revenant said...He fired a minimum of six rounds at a 6-foot target from 30 feet away or less and only scored one good hit. That's pretty bad. Well, without knowing how many total shots there were we really can't say, but he got six rounds on a moving target while under super-high stress and after allegedly being struck in the face. It's not Annie Oakley but assuming he didn't fire many more than 6 rounds it's certainly not "pretty bad."

chickelit said...

He fired a minimum of six rounds at a 6-foot target from 30 feet away or less and only scored one good hit. That's pretty bad.

You assume that he intended all shots to kill. Initial shots could have been warning shots or to disable him.

How many shots missed him completely?

chickelit said...

I'm so tired of hearing what a hard job cops have.

We know you are. :)

Lemme guess, your next Paulian target will be American servicemen and women who fight needless wars in the Middle East against futile targets. Better to "lazyfare" when it comes to ISIS. :)

Revenant said...

Rabid dogs are very unpredictable, police are not. Rabid dogs are a danger to all. Police are not. See what I did there?

You made a series of statements, some of which were true and others of which were not.

Police are neither more nor less unpredictable than non-police. Some police, like some non-police, are a danger to others. You'll never know, meeting one, if he's the kind of person you can trust, or the kind of person who'll abuse you just because he has the power to do so without consequence.

Revenant said...

How many shots "is emptying his clip"?

Ten to fifteen rounds, assuming he was carrying one of the semi-automatics more commonly used by police.

Revenant said...

Lemme guess, your next Paulian target will be American servicemen and women who fight needless wars in the Middle East against futile targets.

Why would I target them? They think the Republican obsession with waging endless war in the Middle East is retarded, too. There's a reason Ron Paul, crazy as he was, was the most popular Republican candidate among the active-duty military.

Better to "lazyfare" when it comes to ISIS. :)

Of course not. I think the dozens of nations that have failed to pacify that part of the world over the past 3000 years were all a bunch of pussies. Real Americans will straighten that shit out toot sweet.

I mean, sure, we have an unbroken track record of utter failure going back to WW2 -- but that's because we just didn't try hard *enough*. :)

Revenant said...

he got six rounds on a moving target while under super-high stress and after allegedly being struck in the face.

He was firing at an unarmed man running straight towards him, according to the most pro-police version of the narrative. That is neither "super-high stress" nor, effectively, "a moving target". Lateral or vertical movement makes a target harder to hit, motion towards the shooter makes it easier to hit.

John Lynch said...

Riots are the best way to enable a martial law agenda. Really no better way.

jr565 said...

Rev ant wrote:
How would you describe someone or something who might lash out at you violently if you don't proactively convince them you're innocuous? That's the scenario posed by the comment I was replying to.

how about this? comply with officers and 99 times put of a hundred there would be no reason to escalate. Convincing them you're innocuous does not involve not complying while they try to carry out arrest or issue summons.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Revenant said...That is neither "super-high stress" I assume you're kidding. You're kidding, right? Hell, shooting a competitive pistol match is stressful, I honestly have a difficult time imagining the stress of an actual defensive shoot--at someone charging me, no less. I mean, you know, if you're actually in fear for your life and shooting at another human being, that's likely to be stressful, no?
Lateral movement is much more difficult, sure, but any movement is tougher than stationary (try running the paper target back towards you at the range next time and see how quickly your point of aim has to change). Yeah, you were just kidding.

tim in vermont said...

According to Revenant, only Jesus Christ himself is qualified to be a police officer.

The rest of us have to live in the real world, not his dream world where he steps down out of his reveries from time to time to tell us how to live.

DanTheMan said...

>>He was firing at an unarmed man running straight towards him, according to the most pro-police version of the narrative. That is neither "super-high stress" nor, effectively, "a moving target".

OK, so being charged by an angry 6-4 300lb man who is determined to hurt you is NOT high stress?
And targets that are moving are not "moving targets".
Facts just don't matter to you, do they?

Rusty said...

Rev. Had a run in with a cop that didn't end well.
The police are a neccessary evil. Something our constitution empowers the state provide.
All the other stuff is just a revenue enhancement scheme.

Matthew Sablan said...

"Initial shots could have been warning shots or to disable him."

-- Any self-defense course will tell you this is the wrong way to use a gun. You shoot to stop. If they get lucky and your bullet hits their leg and they topple over and live, bonus. If your first shot goes a little high because you've been punched in the face and it kills them, sucks for them.

Police are not required to risk their lives extra to try and subdue a violent suspect. If someone is trying to kill the cop, the cop can use just as much lethal force as a citizen -- they are just equipped better to handle it.

Shanna said...

I mean certifiably mentally ill, which I imagine this person was. Sad, even if justified.

That has been my assumption at this point as well, in which case this is mostly just terribly sad. Someone was talking about how cops attempt to use overwhelming authority and force to make sure people don't attack them, but with someone who is mentally ill, it's quite possible that could be the exactly opposite of the approach you want. I watched a video a while back of a cop talking down someone who clearly wanted to do a 'suicide by cop' thing at a traffic stop. I would like to see cops trained more in this kind of thing, and to assess situations based on more than us vs. them. It is quite possible this was still unavoidable of course, that's the kind of thing I guess we really can't know.

Drago said...

Revenant: "There's a reason Ron Paul, crazy as he was, was the most popular Republican candidate among the active-duty military."

LOL

Hilariously false.

But I do remember the meme.

Drago said...

One fellow who did receive a massive amount of active duty military support was Ross Perot (owing to his long time support of the military, hiring of veterans, etc).

Until he self-destructed (self-destruct might not be the correct term as it seemed quite planned) right in time to hand his poll lead over Clinton and Bush I right into Clintons waiting arms.

Curious George said...

"garage mahal said...

The perfect place to write about frightened white males?"

Mr. tough guy living in city with the racial make-up of Mayberry.

damikesc said...

I agree with Rev here. Police don't have any special rights (Constitution doesn't mention any and we cannot just decide certain people have extra rights).

Was Brown a thug? Yeah, probably. A lot of police, though, have a habit of making bad things worse. I get the crowd control via intimidation mentality but it's hardly a universally successful strategy.

I get that police have stressful jobs, but would we allow jail guards to kill people if they stress them out due to their stressful jobs? No.

There are tons of cases of over militarized police causing havoc. Even if THIS case is legitimate (and that isn't easy to determine because police reports tend to be self serving), the problem is there and we need to nip it now.

Bruce Hayden said...

I'm curious: How would you shoot to incapacitate, immediately and reliably - but not kill?

Only fools shoot to incapacitate, except maybe the military at longer distances. You shoot to stop. If someone dies, as a result, that is Darwin. And, for most, you shoot at center of mass, because you are most likely to hit, and the hits stop the assailant. You don't shoot at the head because you are likely to miss, and the head bones are more likely than not to deflect the bullet. And, you don't shoot legs or arms because you are likely to miss, and even if you don't, you are less likely to stop the assailant.

Imaging being charged by a 300 lb assailant who has already broken the bones around your eye. You are probably going to shoot and keep shooting until he is stopped.

DanTheMan said...

>>Police don't have any special rights

A very foolish assertion.
All states give police officers the right to enforce laws that most citizens do not have.
Try giving your neighbor a speeding ticket, or hauling him off to jail for petty theft. I think you will find that you do *not* have that right, but that Officer Friendly does.
In exchange for those rights, police officers accept the responisiblities of law enforcement: they don't have the right not to answer your call for help because it might be dangerous.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

DanTheMan said... they don't have the right not to answer your call for help because it might be dangerous. That is a very dangerous misconception, Dan. See Warren v. DC or Castle Rock v. Gonzales and understand you do not have an individual right to protection by the police

damikesc said...

A very foolish assertion.
All states give police officers the right to enforce laws that most citizens do not have.


There is no Constitutional basis for it (go ahead and read it and point out where police are given powers above what ordinary citizens get). Police are simply citizens. That we simply accept that government employees have "special" rights is foolish by Americans.

You are aware that when states pass gun control laws, they have to specifically exempt police (which should lead to massive legal challenges but nobody does it)? There is a reason why.

Try giving your neighbor a speeding ticket, or hauling him off to jail for petty theft. I think you will find that you do *not* have that right, but that Officer Friendly does.

No, officer Friendly does not. The government has that right and he is acting on its behalf. He has no more right to do so than Obama had to shut down public parks during the government shut down. We need to de-militarize the government top to bottom (it's hardly ONLY the police that are far too militarized)

Doesn't mean it's not done, but let's not confuse that for something legal.

In exchange for those rights, police officers accept the responisiblities of law enforcement: they don't have the right not to answer your call for help because it might be dangerous.

...yet they do so. Odd, huh? Two calls come in for identical crimes --- one in a dangerous part of town and one in a nice part of town.

Any guesses which one gets answered first? Every single time.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

damiksec said... Even if THIS case is legitimate (and that isn't easy to determine because police reports tend to be self serving), the problem is there and we need to nip it now. So that's an entirely different argument, then? I mean, fair enough, and I largely agree, but that doesn't solve the problem of this actual case. And that's what's actually being discussed here. No on is arguing that cops can shoot anyone they want for any reason. No one (other than possibly Rev) is arguing that cops can't use deadly force to defend themselves or others. The argument is about the appropriateness of the actions given the situation in this case. Given the stakes a "fake but accurate" approach won't do it.

richard mcenroe said...

LA Sheriff's Dept rule: If you still have rounds the suspect is still resisting.

Of course they can't shoot for squat. Had one case out in LA where they fired 120 and hit a stationary suspect once.

Local media never followed up on where the rest of those rounds went.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Of course they can't shoot for squat. Anecdotally true, of course, and lots of police do little shooting other than their mandated qualifying. That's why I said the important info is how many total shots the cop in this instance fired. Just knowing he got 6 hits in the situation as we vaguely understand it now isn't enough to say whether this was good or bad shooting.

Kirk Parker said...

Richard Dolan,

Good grief, there is no such thing as shoot-to-incapacitate in the real world.

damikesc said...

So that's an entirely different argument, then? I mean, fair enough, and I largely agree, but that doesn't solve the problem of this actual case. And that's what's actually being discussed here.

Rev isn't arguing this case specifically. He seems to be arguing this whole "Can't upset the cops" mentality we have nationally.

The police could remove all suspicion by simply having cameras as part of their uniform. They don't want that.

Do I buy the police report? Not completely. Police have a history of lying about incidents.

This case? We don't know what happened. We have eyewitness "evidence" which is notoriously unreliable. And the cops and the mob have both been rather shitty in the situation. The cops have made the problem worse, which is saying something given the sub-human quality of mobs to begin with.

No one (other than possibly Rev) is arguing that cops can't use deadly force to defend themselves or others.

I don't reading him arguing that, either. He points out that there seems to be a DRASTICALLY different set of problems for a citizen who kills somebody in self-defense and a cop who does the same.

And cops who shoot people without reason tend to not be charged with murder while citizens are.

Cops have no more rights than people and to treat them like they DESERVE more rights is insanity.

Do they have tough jobs? Sure. Plenty of people have really tough jobs. Few have jobs where if they shoot somebody in error, a murder charge is highly unlikely to follow.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

damikesc: Well we were arguing the specifics in this case, which was the problem. You and I largely agree!
I think you have to look at the circumstances of any shooting individually and consider the totality of those circumstances. I don't think police should get "extra rights" or should play by a different set of rules except to the extent that differences are required by their job. I want more cameras and more transparency generally.

DanTheMan said...

>>There is no Constitutional basis for it
Not everything is in the Constitution, of course. I am not arguing that point. I am saying that the police have arrest powers that you do not have. I agree they get that power from the state.

>>You are aware that when states pass gun control laws, they have to specifically exempt police

Keenly aware. Again, police officers on duty have rights other citizens do not have. If you want to say that off duty, they should be bound by the same laws, then I would generally agree with that. At least in my state, many agencies used to pay some de minimus amount annually for “on call” status, so any time you were in the city, you were technically on duty.

>>No, officer Friendly does not.
The government has that right and he is acting on its behalf.
A distinction without a difference, in my opinion. Officer Friendly has the power given him by the state, and average Joe does not. I’m not suggesting Officer Friendly was born with it, or it survives his employment.

>>In exchange for those rights, police officers accept the responsibilities of law enforcement: they don't have the right not to answer your call for help because it might be dangerous.
>>>...yet they do so. Odd, huh?
Not in my experience. You can’t hide: your fellow officers have a very low tolerance for cowardice, which is what we’re talking about.

>>Two calls come in for identical crimes --- one in a dangerous part of town and one in a nice part of town. Any guesses which one gets answered first? Every single time.

I don’t have to guess. I’ve been there. I doubt seriously that you have, based on what you are posting. In my experience, in fact, high priority calls in high crime areas often attract a faster and greater response. The simple truth is that some police officers prefer a bit of excitement, and would rather make a felony arrest than referee a family fight. The job does not tend to attract those who want a quiet, boring life. As to every single time…. Nonsense.

DanTheMan said...

>>. See Warren v. DC or Castle Rock v. Gonzales and understand you do not have an individual right to protection by the police

I wasn't saying that you do. I was saying that police officers do not have the right to say "Gee, that armed robbery in progress call sounds dangerous. I might get shot. Dispatch, I'm not going."


HoodlumDoodlum said...

DanTheMan said...I was saying that police officers do not have the right to say "Gee, that armed robbery in progress call sounds dangerous. I might get shot. Dispatch, I'm not going."
And I'm saying (given the legal precedents) that you, as an individual, would have no legal recourse against the police if they in fact did that.

DanTheMan said...

HooDoo,
Perhaps you are correct, as a question of legal theory, or in extraordinary circumstances (a radioactive bomb of some type, for example.
Any officer that ducks dangerous calls (and there are some, of course) get discovered rather promptly, and find themselves off the street in short order. A chicken backup is worse than none.

DanTheMan said...

Forgot to add...
Even if citizens have no right to police protection, I know of no case law that says an officer has a right to refuse a call because he just doesn't want to go.
Different issue...

damikesc said...

Even if citizens have no right to police protection, I know of no case law that says an officer has a right to refuse a call because he just doesn't want to go.

If there's no legal penalty in doing so, then they have that "right"

jr565 said...

Damikesc if there's a bank robbery tomorrow cops have to go there to deal with it. You don't. They are obligated to risk their lives. As such they have powers you don't have.

jr565 said...

Revenant wrote:
I'm so tired of hearing what a hard job cops have. There are tens of millions of Americans who worker harder, more dangerous jobs for less pay and fewer benefits -- construction workers, farmers, fishermen, truck drivers, etc. Nobody thinks those occupations should enjoy rights above and beyond those accorded to "normal" people.

I wish there was a way for cops to be able to ignore you if you ever needed one.

jr565 said...

Reve, those other jobs don't require you to arrest people who don't want to be arrested and might shoot at you. Your ingratitude and false comparisons make me sick.

jr565 said...
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jr565 said...

Revenant should be able to put a sign on his door that says he doesn't support cops. And in turn 911 should be able to hang up the phone on him. If cops need to investigate a crime at his house they should be able to tell rev to investigate his own damn case. Any forensic work should be done out of his own CSI office which he set up in his backyard. If he's involved in a car jacking and they see its Rev they should give him the finger and let him chase after the car jacker himself. If Rev owns a business and there's a riot outside, cops should be able to look up Rev on a list of those who don't want cops services and let the looters do what they want to his store.

Kirk Parker said...

damikesc,

"Do they have tough jobs? Sure. Plenty of people have really tough jobs."

True, but you don't go far enough! Quite and number of occupations, in fisheries, agriculture, and the building trades, have a higher job-related fatality rate than patrol officers do.

damikesc said...

True, but you don't go far enough! Quite and number of occupations, in fisheries, agriculture, and the building trades, have a higher job-related fatality rate than patrol officers do.

Very true. The sentimentality of "police risk their lives for us" is beside the point. Quite a few people do so.

Hell, firefighters take as many risks and tend to be markedly less dickish in their treatment of the community than police.

DanTheMan said...

Strangely enough, I am somewhat in agreement with Rev. We have overdone the "hero" bit, in my opinion.