After killing the mentally ill man she was called to help, cop complain "well, guess I'm losing my gun again"

Originally published at: After killing the mentally ill man she was called to help, cop complain "well, guess I'm losing my gun again" | Boing Boing


Inside Out Reaction GIF by Disney Pixar


Season 2 Usa GIF


21 feet, round up to 30,
40 if the wind’s behind them, and 50 if they’re on an incline.
Also a “knife” could be a screwdriver, a book, or a teddy bear.


That is true. BUT - they already had their weapons drawn. So there is no way he could close 21 feet to attack before they could fire.

There is no reason to pursue so closely.

With two officers on scene they could have had one deploy a taser while the other covered with a firearm.

Or, you know, find someone with crisis training and just talk to the guy.


When you call 911, you are summoning executioners.

Sadly true.
A few years ago, the family down the street from me called the police to assist with a mentally disabled family member (who lived at the house) who was acting violent in the backyard.
He was about 5-6 and 120 pounds if that.
Three cops showed up. And bottom line, the man was armed with a shovel and one of the three cops shot and killed him.
Nothing happened to the officer that pulled the trigger.


Yeah, basically this. The whole 21 feet thing is based on something called the Tueller Drill. It doesn’t make sense in this context and shouldn’t be thought of as a rule.

There really should be some better way to handle these situations than what happened. This type of thing happens ALL THE TIME, where police get called to deal with a mental health crisis, the guy is armed with a knife, the guy isn’t actually going to stab anyone, but at the same time, the police aren’t going to let themselves find out if he is or isn’t, and so they end up shooting.

Seems like more aggressive use of bean bag rounds (which pack a serious punch) or pepper balls or maybe even a shield, a knife vest, and a baton, would work. Maybe a police dog could help in this situation. Must be other options. I do get it, once he has threatened someone with a knife, they’re going to need to disarm him and take him into custody. They can’t just leave after that. But they could handle it some other way.


Just proper training is what is needed, not less lethal ammunition.


And while this is a national issue with policing, to top it off this is the town where there is a state mental hospital and the local school team is the Maniacs.

1 Like

whew, thank goodness he can pay those bills while on administrative leave. that was surely a huge relief. I was really worried about that. /s

Whatever happened to rubber bullets, sound guns that make you fall over in pain and puke, nets you can shoot that immobilize. And where are the frickin tazers?

They had no choice? no good choice? how about putting the guns down to calm him down. find out what he wants. what he needs. deescalate.

I think we need a strict law that shows that if the officers make no effort to deescalate, when they obviously have time to do so, then any violence they commit after that is intentional and possibly homicide.


That’s over a decade old. Good technique. Proper training is always what’s needed.
Not sure which force that was and whether they had tasers then, but today I’d be surprised if that guy wasn’t tasered before we got 30 secs into that video.

1 Like

Or: the fucking cops should stay in the car and let a professional handle the situation.


None of the above. No cops. Bring in someone with expertise in talking someone through a mental health crisis. Leave the cops at the donut shop.


I totally agree. Sadly, over here (UK) there are no such people - or far too few - and the cops end up on the pointy end of the stick. Mostly they do ok but there are some egregiously bad cases, too, including deaths.


It’s bad enough in the US that, in some cities, almost every interaction between police and someone in a mental health crisis leads to death or injury. Portland police are still under a federal consent decree for their record of executing anyone in a mental health crisis.


“Armed Police, drop the machete! Don’t make me deploy the Wheelie-Bin!”

I like the use of a fence in this one; and, also how quickly the situation de-escalates once the man is on the “fucking” floor. Even here, though, I wonder if the police would have been better off standing back and not pepper-spraying the guy.


correct me if im wrong, but those cops aren’t given a choice.

arming police with guns means they will use those guns. guns cause deaths because they make violence easy. the guns themselves are a problem

police mentality doesn’t help. the goal of the people called should be medical and supportive in nature. not law enforcement and the use of force to establish order

tldr. america calls cops when it should call medics, and it gives those cops weapons which encourage deadly outcomes. it’s not about training


It’s like something out of a Verhoeven movie.

But they are. I agree that for something like this, someone trained to deal with someone going through a crisis would be of better use than a cop.

But a cop with the right mentality and training can also do the job. They do do the job. There have been examples of cops doing the job in this thread. There are lots of examples on the internet of cops dealing with disturbed people with knives and either talking them down, or disarming them with non-lethal means. Those rarely make the news because things went right. But these examples are evidence that this shooting was completely unnecessary and bad training being a big factor. You don’t need to be a tactician to know to put distance between you and an armed suspect. And when they fuck up like that, there should be consequences.

You’re right that cops rely on their guns way too much as being the only tool to use. But it isn’t some fatalist event where cops aren’t given a choice to use it or not. Hell, they have more tools at their disposal than ever before.