The Shooting of an "Unarmed Man"

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This topic contains 6 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Unseen 4 years ago.

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  • #2509

    Unseen
    Participant

    The words “unarmed man” are figuring in the news quite a bit lately. This or that cop shot someone who was unarmed is the way it is described.

    That’s a little disingenuous, unless it’s just ignorant.

    To a cop, nobody is “unarmed” until they’ve been frisked. Recently, some poor black college kid had an accident and banged on a residential door asking to use the phone (a young person without a cell phone? who knew?!!!). Anyway, the resident didn’t want to open her door to a stranger who might, after all, be up to no good, so she called the police and said someone wanted to get into her home. The police showed up and as their dash cam video shows, he ignored their orders to stop and lay down and instead broke into a sprint toward one of the officers, who shot him. He died.

    If the young man had meant harm to the cop (as we assume he did not) once he got into the cop’s personal space, his apparent lack of a weapon could have turned into a situation where, indeed, there was a weapon. As some of you may know, I’m a collector of knives. And not butter knives, but rather really seriously sharp combat and self-defense knives. I know that you can kill someone in an instant with a knife.

    Only a “suicide by cop” brandishes a weapon as they approach the police. Someone intent on harming the cop will only produce the weapon when it’s too late to respond effectively. Go onto Youtube and search on things like “fatal knife attack,” if you have the stomach for it, and you’ll see citizens and cops being killed by knives. Since guns can kill from a distance, finding close quarters fatal gun attacks will required greater searching, but I can guarantee they’re out there to look at if you want to find them.

    So, the next time a policeman kills someone who was approaching him and ignoring instructions, remember that no one’s unarmed until they’ve been frisked.

    • This topic was modified 4 years ago by  Unseen.
    • This topic was modified 4 years ago by  Unseen.
    #2530

    Matt
    Participant

    So if a policeman (or anyone really) sprints at me and I’ve done nothing wrong I can shoot him dead? I don’t understand. Are you saying it’s ok to kill people because they disobey your authority?

    What happened to the policeman’s taser? Were there no other non-lethal options left?

    #2531

    Unseen
    Participant

    So if a policeman (or anyone really) sprints at me and I’ve done nothing wrong I can shoot him dead? I don’t understand. Are you saying it’s ok to kill people because they disobey your authority?

    What happened to the policeman’s taser? Were there no other non-lethal options left?

    People run in my direction when I’m downtown and I don’t shoot them. Of course, police are often dealing with people who have been engaged in a crime or have been acting hostile toward them or others. That’s a major difference.

    Tasers have a much higher failure rate than pistols. I wonder why you didn’t ask “Why didn’t the cop shoot in the air first?” or “Why didn’t he shoot him in the foot?”

    Cops want to be home with their kids after work just like the rest of us. We ask them to deal with potentially dangerous situations then we second-guess decisions they have to make often in less than a second. And much of the time the injured/killed party was being less than cooperative.

    The safety zone for someone charging a cop with a knife is said to be 21 feet. In other words, if the cop’s gun isn’t already drawn and ready to fire and the baddie is within 21 feet, the cop probably won’t be able to fire in time. If he has his taser out then he doesn’t have his gun out. Then the taser fails to stop the attacker. Dead cop.

    I find all this second-guessing by amateurs with no idea of the realities depressingly amusing.

    #2534

    Matt
    Participant

    police are often dealing with people who have been engaged in a crime or have been acting hostile toward them or others

    So if the police have a bad day, they can shoot someone running towards them? They had no evidence that this man had committed any crime or intended to commit any crime, yet he has been killed. He may of been running over to talk to them. Maybe he wanted to use their phone or wanted to ask them for some other assistance.

    I wonder why you didn’t ask “Why didn’t the cop shoot in the air first?”

    Because I realise that is dangerous. What goes up, generally comes down.

    or “Why didn’t he shoot him in the foot?”

    Because shooting a sprinting man in the foot is difficult. For the record, I did actually think of this.

    And much of the time the injured/killed party was being less than cooperative.

    So it’s ok to shoot people who aren’t 100% cooperative? I’m trying to understand the rules by which both the police and the public can live their lives. So far, it sounds like it needs to be two different sets of rules, and I’m not ok with that.

    If he has his taser out then he doesn’t have his gun out

    Why bother carrying a taser then? Anytime when it would actually be a non-lethal alternative to a gun is precisely when the police pull their gun out.

    I find all this second-guessing by amateurs with no idea of the realities depressingly amusing.

    I’m not second guessing on a professional level. I’m second guessing on a philosophical level, there’s a difference.

    You seem to of forgotten my question:

    Are you saying it’s ok to kill people because they disobey your authority?

    #2536

    Unseen
    Participant

    @matt, the general answer to all of your points is that, yes, a cop can shoot someone who is disobeying lawful orders and is setting up a situation which is a danger to the cop.

    The #1 skill we can teach police to prevent such shootings is how to read minds, because if you’re a cop and someone is coming at you despite your instructions to maintain distance and all themselves to be frisked, you’re not the one who knows what the subject’s intentions are. Only the subject knows whether his appearance of being unarmed is the reality.

    This is a picture of one of the knives I own. It’s got an 8″ blade and can be tucked out of sight under a shirt of jacket, but it can be out and in someone’s neck in an instant.

    Hissatsu

    This is why we let cops shoot people who turn out to be unarmed. This is why we are loath to prosecute them or convict them when they are prosecuted.

    • This reply was modified 4 years ago by  Unseen.
    #2541

    Ron H
    Participant

    Unless the young man was high on drugs or alcohol, then presumably he is aware that it is not okay to run toward a cop. In fact it is lethal to do so. All he had to do was go to the ground and obey the cop’s directions.

    #2547

    Unseen
    Participant

    Unless the young man was high on drugs or alcohol, then presumably he is aware that it is not okay to run toward a cop. In fact it is lethal to do so. All he had to do was go to the ground and obey the cop’s directions.

    So many of these incidents of police shooting civilians involve people who disobey or do the opposite of what police are instructing them to do. Most of these instructions are designed to keep the situation from escalating.

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