Oklahoma City: Police Shoot Deaf Man for Not Complying

Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by bostjan, Sep 21, 2017.

  1. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Ok, here we go again...

    http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-...ot-deaf-man-despite-yells-of-he-cant-hear-you

    In this case, I think I can sort of see both sides of it, but, no one is fully in the right here, IMO.

    The story says that this guy is non-verbal and could not hear.

    Where I'm unclear is why was he shot multiple times by multiple officers with guns and tasers at the same time?

    Ok, my thoughts, since no one is asking:

    1. Being unable to hear, or being non-verbal, etc., does not excuse a person from threatening another person, especially a LEO, with a weapon.
    2. Being 15+ feet away from a person with a melee weapon, and walking toward them at any pace considered "walking" is not really the level of "threatening" that warrants deadly force, IMO, under any circumstances I can really imagine.
    3. If you are going to taze a bro, taze him. If you taze him and shoot him at the same time, something is flat wrong with the situation. I'm not 100% certain about tazing someone over them simply not complying with verbal instructions, but shooting them with bullets over just that is way to far.
    4. So, it needs to be said - Really, no body cameras? I thought this was supposed to be a thing in 2017. How many of these shootings have actually had body cameras active? I'm sure there are cases we don't hear about, but I get the impression that the number of police not using body cameras and then shooting people is infinity times too high.

    So, really, the news making a big deal out of the guy being deaf, to me, is just a red herring. Same story - guy is not deaf - same outcome - I think it's the same conclusion of right and wrong.

    What do you think?
     
  2. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    I'm gonna have to come up with a nice concise answer to just copy and paste every time one of these stories come up but in a nutshell, it's ridiculous that we don't have better non-lethal weapons for law enforcement.
     
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  3. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire tinkerer/aspiring builder/8 string hoarder

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    I'm more bothered by why one officer had their taser out and the other had their firearm. I don't know if that's SOP down there as a precautionary measure but most places require a cop to at least attempt to use the taser first before drawing their weapon.
    Anything within 21 feet is considered a "danger zone" since people are able to close that distance faster than most cops can react and can cause serious harm (it's mostly applied to bladed weapons, but I've talked with some cops who apply it to all melee weapons/as a rule of thumb about maintaining distance). There was a case of a somalian man here in MN years ago who was standing at a gas station waving a machete around and started moving towards officers/not complying and they ended up shooting him. It's a big deal when people start approaching police with a bladed weapon, especially if they're on drugs like PCP which dulls pain response and makes them harder to deal with/take down.
     
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  4. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Well, that's the thing, though, police do have access to several non-lethal weapons, yet, the go-to is always the trusty 9mm. It's like a carpenter who has all sorts of tools in his tool belt, and even fancier tools in his work truck, yet still just bashes everything with his hammer.

    I think that comment hits especially hard in this story, since the guy ended up being tazed and shot multiple times simultaneously. Like, why even bother tazing the guy if your partner is already shooting him?! Or, much more importantly, why shoot the guy multiple times when your partner is tazing him?!?!

    I guess this puts a lot of perspective on one of my other recent threads, where I was complaining about motor vehicle inspections. At least VT police don't seem to be shooting nearly as many people as other police. :/

    I agree, but in this case, everyone seems to be in agreement that this guy in this case was not moving very quickly and maybe there is some fuzziness about whether he was holding the potential weapon in a threatening way or not.

    If someone around me is holding a pair of scissors, I don't tend to be too nervous, unless they are holding the scissors up in the air in the standard "I'm 'bout to stab y'all" pose, then I'm going to be very nervous. Same goes for a guy holding a metal pipe. If his arm is pointing downward or if he was holding the pipe at waist level with both hands, I could hardly see it as a threatening gesture. If he was holding the pipe over his head, pointing upward, then I could see, even from 15+ feet away, how the officers would be ready to respond with force.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2017
  5. vilk

    vilk Very Regular

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    Too bad a white jury will never, never never never ever never put a white cop in jail for murdering a minority.
     
  6. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    That's probably a true statement, but it's a moot point when cases like this never, never never never ever never go to trial in the first place.
     
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  7. cwhitey2

    cwhitey2 BlackendCrust Metalâ„¢

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    It's going to take a cop/cops killing multiple extremely famous people in order to change current mentality that officers have, and that still might not be enough IMO
     
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  8. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    Well, I brought up the need for a better response for me to 'copy paste' because I've had literally this EXACT same discussion several times before (there was a thread on here about a mentally ill guy being both shot AND bean bagged or tazed a few years back, and recently here in Schenectady, another guy was also shot AND tazed a few weeks ago; both for brandishing a knife). After some back and forths "why did they shoot him?" "tasers are unreliable at disabling a perp" "yeah but it's a melee weapon. they can just back away while they wait to see if it's been effective" "well, people die from tasers and bean bags sometimes anyway. They're not non-lethal, just less lethal but also less effective".

    Legit, about a dozen times I've had this exact exchange. And where I always end up with is "okay, well it's 2017. All the technology at our disposal, show me any effort by law enforcement or weapons companies to produce a more effective non-lethal (or even 'less lethal') alternative." and it's always crickets.
     
  9. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    But, I don't think the effectiveness of the nonlethal weapon is even an issue if the perp is shot with that weapon and simultaneously shot with a 9mm. I mean, even the 9mm can be non-lethal, but when there are four cops each emptying their entire clip simultaneously, the situation will tend to be more lethal, not just for the perp, but for any bystanders who are unlucky enough to be situated anywhere near the imaginary line connecting from the cops to the perp and continuing onward.

    I don't understand why there would be crickets chirping after you ask what the non-lethal alternative to the service pistol is, when you have the bean bags and tear gas and tazers and rubber bullets and water cannons and night sticks and pepper spray and sponge grenades and flash bangs all at the police's disposal.

    I guess maybe I missed all of those conversations, so I'm just boring you, but I feel like I'm missing something. Do you mean that the police should be only carrying their pistols loaded with non-lethal rounds? There are plenty of those, too, besides rubber - wax bullets, plastic bullets, soft polymer bullets, etc. I guess to you it's the conversation you've had a thousand times and it went nowhere. To me it's the discussion that I just keep hoping makes it to the ears of the people who are in charge of things. I guess that those people are probably apathetic or don't know what to do about it, or both.

    I think it just boils down to the fact that the police will just say "we are fighting people who use real bullets, what are we supposed to do?" And they are not wrong overall, but maybe they are still wrong in general; it doesn't matter. If the perp has a gun, the cop is not going to verify which type of bullets are being used before engaging in a shootout - or, in roughly one out of ten police shootings cases, whether the unarmed person being shot by the police is wearing body armor or not (psst: they are not).

    IDK, bad guys are bad, sure, but when nearly every police officer has a nightstick AND pepper spray AND a tazer AND a 9mm pistol on his belt, why is it that the unarmed perp seems to almost always get the 9mm pistol? Is it because he just hasn't pulled out his weapon yet? Or, like the most recent court case in the news, because the gun hasn't been planted on him yet (don't worry officer, you'll be acquitted because you're planting that gun on a bad man).

    Do I sound crazy? I probably am crazy. I feel like this is all crazy. But is what I am saying wrong? If I'm crazy, but I'm not wrong, well, then I guess the whole world is crazy right there with me.
     
  10. tedtan

    tedtan SS.org Regular

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    In addition to non lethal weapons, I'd say the focus should be on hiring better candidates, providing better training, and on providing more and better refresher training on how to deal with these types of situations. And the body cams? They should 1) be mandatory, and 2) run at all times (e.g., the officer can't disable the cam).
     
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  11. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    Oh yeah, my intent was in no way to be argumentative or counter to you. Actually, we're mostly in agreement here. I was just prefacing my statement because other people have heard it from me before and I also wanted to express how frustrating it is that these things happen and we still see no movement, no action.

    I agree that the police currently have a multitude of weapons in their arsenal that are non-lethal, I'm just rebutting the fact that they continually go back to 1.) what weapon they choose to use is at their own discretion 2.) they don't trust their current non-lethal weapons enough to trust drawing them first.

    Forgetting for a second the notion that cops are out there just wanting to kill people for fun, the only reason a cop would choose their pistol over a non-lethal weapon would be fear for their life and a lack of confidence the non-lethal weapon would be enough. Likewise, the repeated number of times I've heard advocates for "blue lives" pushing back against critics of lethal police actions by saying "tasers don't work" "tasers can kill people too", I have to conclude that the technology they're currently employing is just not evolved enough to meet the needs of the positions currently. :2c:

    And I also say all of this a bit 'tongue in cheek' because in truth, I'm sure there are options out there but they're simply not being offered. That gets way into the weeds regarding who's making the decisions on what policemen carry and how they're trained and whether or not they're doing so with the intention of what's best for cops AND civilians or whether they're doing it for ulterior reasons.
     
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  12. Randy

    Randy Ooh, Degrasse Tyson-son Super Moderator

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    Another one that's come up in other threads. And frequently I hear "Well, it's an intense situation. They're worried about their life. What would you do in that situation?" (which also gets used when cops get loud or violent after a car/foot chase). The answer is, that's why I'm not a cop.

    Again, I apologize for anybody who's had to sit through me stating this before but pursuing a job in law enforcement means acknowledging most or all of your job will involve dealing with BAD PEOPLE. Full stop. We have laws in this country for a reason, and those laws don't mean shoplifting or running a red light and getting mouthy are punishable by death. No, cops are very unlikely going to arrest a person for picking flowers in the park or skipping through a field and singing. They should be well aware that if they're detaining someone or arresting them, by nature they will very likely be unpleasant and hard to deal with, and unlikely to follow directions. It's not easy dealing with that, which is why (for those who do the job amicably) it's supposed to be a job of high honor, that should take a lot of training and they should be well protected and well compensated for.

    To your second point about body cameras, absolutely. I've already heard in a lot of places "police officers must have their body cameras on at all times" but then sprinkled in caveats like, they're supposed to start the camera at the moment they pull a person over, or at the point where they're about to approach/engage them or specifically when they leave the precinct etc. Which has a mountain of holes in, such as "accidentally" leaving the camera off or things that are unfair to the officer too, like expecting them to start fiddling with a camera when they should be focusing on the dangers infront of them. It's a lose-lose policy.

    And along with that, I've also heard "well, there's very heavy penalties on cops for leaving their camera off". How heavy? Getting a write-up or a month of paid leave aren't exactly proportional reactions to something (meaning leaving camera off) that could be done to either hide planting of evidence or cover-up knowingly killing an unarmed person, etc. And by design, nobody's going to be checking to make sure cameras were recording until something's already happened. You're only going to find out a cop didn't have his camera on AFTER somebody's lying dead.
     
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  13. synrgy

    synrgy Ya ya ya I am Lorde

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    I'm guessing that's exactly what the spin is trying to address: "Don't bat an eyelash when an able-bodied person is unjustifiably murdered by police officers? Alright.. Let's see if you react when the person is handicapped.."

    In other words, I'm presuming that spin is an attempt to cut through the 'normalization'. Ironically, it will likely achieve the opposite effect.
     
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  14. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Oh, I didn't think you were, I was just unclear with exactly what you were saying.

    Taser do kill people, too. But you are a lot less likely to be killed from being shot with a taser than to be killed being shot by a pistol. And I don't think the problem is really cops wanting to murder people, either, but the problem is that the amount of force used seems to regularly be disproportionate to the amount necessary. I think the mentality is that there is a chance that they will be dealing with a bad guy hyped up on a cocktail of powerful illegal stimulants and a bottle of maximum strength cold medicine to boot, and that mutant drug-addict is going to be able to take body shots like a reanimated corpse in a George Romero film, so anything less than full metal jacket slugs are going to be a waste of precious time. But, then, what we see on youtube or on the 11 o'clock news is some unarmed homeless man getting shot a ridiculous number of times in the back because he's holding a swiss army knife while he's stumbling away up the hill, or the non-verbal dude holding a pipe taking a taser along with ten shots because he tried to get close enough to communicate with the officer, or the rich white Australian lady taking a couple bullets in the abdomen because REASON NOT GIVEN, or the young father getting blasted numerous times because he tried to drive away, or the man running from the police on foot down a crowded sidewalk being missed by almost a hundred rounds fired by a dozen officers - and the stray bullets striking numerous innocent bystanders, or, or, or...

    I don't get it. :shrug: You know what, full frankness-mode here - if you want your cops to keep their damn guns, then get control over them. Don't shoot so many unarmed people nor people armed with not-typically-regarded-as-weapons, and people with middle-of-the-road politics won't start considering that cops are potentially more dangerous than helpful as long as they have guns. :2c:
     
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  15. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    Similar to Randy, one day I'll bother to write a nice, concise response to copy and paste whenever this happens on the need for a separate oversight board to be responsible for reviewing police use of allegedly excessive force, rather than continuing to treat it as an "internal matter."
     

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