Powered by TypePad

« But What Do They Really Think? | Main | Timeless Yet Baffling »

October 10, 2015






Buckle my shoe.

Short, little, while.  Also, forty years ago.

I think I've told you I know someone who worked for a little while as a security guard at a downtown Baltimore McDonald's. He openly carried a gun in a holster on his hip. It was a wooden gun.

Cecil Turner

Justified? Sorry, guys, I saw the video. The funny thing is, this is the case that ought to be front and center on the cops out of control bandwagon. And if Cleveland riots tomorrow, I'm going to have a tiny bit of sympathy for 'em.

Ignatz Ratzkiwatzki

--The 'exact same scenario' includes, IMHO, the fact that the officers drove up to within ten feet of an alleged gun-waver in a park that seemed to be virtually empty.--

Watched the video before and have done so again and I'm still not sure what to make of it. We don't know how many people were off camera.
But we do know what the cops didn't; it was a 12 year old kid with a toy gun.
They saw a fairly big person fairly clearly raise what looked like a real weapon as they drove up and he approached the car.

Isn't putting themselves between an armed subject and the public what they're supposed to do?
What if he had had a real rifle and they stopped 100 feet away and he picked off four or five people? We'd be criticizing the chicken cops who won't protect the public.

It was an accidental shooting that shouldn't have happened and the city should pay for a wrongful death.
I'm not sure there should be any criminal liability though.
Perhaps criminal liability should be reserved for clearcut cases of criminal intent so we don't end up with cops parked 100 feet away while real criminals blaze away.

buccaneer morgan

in other narrative bursting news,


tom swift

Police cannot assume that every gun they see is clear evidence of criminal action or deadly intent. There are what, 350 million perfectly legal guns in the US? All are legal to own; generally they're legal to carry. If there's a crime going on, police have to determine that; they can't be allowed to assume it. And normally we expect them to give themselves the opportunity to determine that by ordering the suspect to drop the gun. Ordinarily, suspect drops gun, removing the chance of immediate menace; police question suspect, ask for licenses or whatever; determine that nothing's amiss; give suspect a short lecture about waving what seems to be a gun around; and leave. No dead bodies. This procedure should not be optional.


When I (and I presume most of us) were kids we played with toy guns. I haven't seen the video, and I know that nowadays it's supposed to be somehow bad form for kids to play with toy guns, but I would hate to think that any kid who does can be shot by a cop. I agree with Iggy that it shouldn't be criminal, but it's hard to believe this shooting could not have been avoided, unless the kid literally pointed the gun at the cops, or at least did not respond to an order to drop it.


Two weeks after Michael Brown died in Ferguson, 2 white St. Louis cops killed a young black guy in broad daylight, via suicide by cop [WARNING: link shows the murder]. The cops were called because the young man was acting crazy. Onlookers commented on the man's crazy-acting, but none seemed to find him particularly dangerous. But 2 cops arrive and shoot him dead within seconds with little to no justification imo, as he wasn't rushing toward them with knife raised, and they had time to taze or shoot his extremities imo. This police shooting was much more problematic than the Ferguson officer's, yet little was said about it since the Mayor and Police Chief in St. Louis are white but solid Dems.

Buford Gooch

How many of you have been on the wrong of a gun in a tense situation? How many of you have looked down that barrel at likely sudden death? What if it had been a 19 year old with a real gun? Do we need a dead cop to justify a shooting? This was a tragic mistake. The cop that shot him will have to live with that mistake for ever. Who are we to sit at our keyboards and judge whether this was reasonable or not? Experienced investigators say it was.

The comments to this entry are closed.