23 Police Officers, 377 Rounds, Two Men And No Guns

BY Herschel Smith
5 years, 3 months ago

The Atlantic:

I’ve long proposed a simple rule: police officers who shoot unarmed innocents should have their guns taken away. They can work desk jobs or monitor meters. But if nothing else, they shouldn’t ever be in a position to put lives in danger again.

Applying that rule in Miami would have dramatic consequences.

The local CBS affiliate has investigated a police shooting that happened there last December. The results are jaw-dropping. A man who committed armed robbery and shot a police officer hours earlier was spotted in his automobile, along with a passenger who played no role in his crime. Police officers gave chase.

CBS reports what happened next:

The suspect’s blue Volvo crashed into the backyard of a townhouse.

It was later determined that neither the suspect nor the passenger was armed. Police officers nevertheless fired two barrages of bullets into the vehicle. Witnesses say that after the first volley of approximately 50 bullets, the two men were still alive. 

Roughly two minutes passed between volleys.

After the second volley both men were dead. Said another witness: “The policemen that had on the black and white vests were out there laughing like it was so funny.”

How about a different standard than the one proposed by the writer?  How about all 23 officers stand accused of murder (with a jury composed entirely of people from the neighborhood from which the victims came), and if found guilty of first degree murder receive the death penalty.  If found guilty of second degree murder get life without the possibility of parole and live among the general prison population for the rest of their miserable existence?

Sounds reasonable to me.  Would you propose a different standard?  Why?

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Comments

  1. On May 8, 2014 at 12:45 pm, Paul B said:

    The police have become Judge, Jury and executioner. I am not sure how we can rein in this beast.

  2. On May 8, 2014 at 3:03 pm, Western Gunowner said:

    I’m reading stories of muder by the police every week and I am sure I’m not seeing all of them.

    Just this last week – http://www.wlwt.com/news/coroners-report-new-cruiser-cam-released-in-boone-co-deputy-shooting/25843062

    A 19 y/o women in a car with 3 other un-armed people leaving a party. The cop thought she was trying to run over him.

    Sure. Instead of just getting out of the way, he shoots her.

    SOP. He gets to go home at the end of his shift. She didn’t.

  3. On May 11, 2014 at 12:42 pm, Douglas Moore said:

    I’m betting the stats on this are no different then they’ve ever been. Just a hunch.

  4. On May 22, 2014 at 10:21 pm, Charles Hammond Jr said:

    You are twice as likely to be shot by a cop than you are by a CCW permit holder.

  5. On May 8, 2014 at 6:40 pm, Rob Crawford said:

    You left out the review of very department policy and all their training material and schedules, and additional charges brought up for all officers, administrators, and elected officials who allowed the obvious deficiencies to continue. No sovereign immunity; all damages paid out of the personal assets of the negligent, not from taxes or insurance.

  6. On May 9, 2014 at 3:11 pm, Archer said:

    This event just screamed “Group Vigilantism” to me. It makes absolutely no difference that the perpetrators had uniforms and badges; their actions were not those of a group seeking to apprehend a suspect, but those of a group looking to corner and kill one.

    Vigilantism (adj.): done violently and summarily, without recourse to lawful procedures (emphasis added)

    I’d charge all of them with first-degree murder (one count for each of the two people in the car) with the included lesser offenses of second-degree murder and manslaughter, conspiracy to commit the same (one count for each of the two people in the car), willful negligence/disregard for safety (one count for every bullet fired and another for the chase), endangering the public (one count for every bullet fired and another for the chase), assaulting a police officer (one count for each of the two officers hit by friendly fire), assault with a deadly weapon (one count for each of the two officers hit by friendly fire)…. I could go on. Under Florida’s “10/20/Life” statute, they’d all get 20 years, minimum, EVEN IF the shooting of the two in the car is ruled justified – which would be a stretch given the totally disproportionate amount of force present/used. Watch the media clamor to find a “Stand Your Ground” defense for the “public safety” officers.

    [sarcasm] And just think: these paragons of virtue and objectivity are the “Only Ones” trained and responsible enough to carry firearms. I feel safer, don’t you? [/sarcasm]

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