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This Is What Happens When Law Enforcement Fails to Pull the Trigger

Updated on August 27, 2020
Kyler J Falk profile image

Social issues can only be remedied by a collective acceptance of those opinions we view as opposing our own.

Either all lives matter, or you're weaponizing life and death at the expense of others.
Either all lives matter, or you're weaponizing life and death at the expense of others. | Source

Today I would like to retell a story based around true events with the utmost attention paid to accuracy as I can possibly muster. I've been told this story over and over again, ad nauseam, with the hopes I would be instilled with the underlying notion that we should sympathize with law enforcement. Even further, this story was told to me with the expectation I would always give law enforcement the benefit of the doubt when they end someone's life.

I'd like to tell you that story, and perhaps you'll understand—a little deeper— what it is like to be an officer, and the far-reaching consequences should you fail to pull the trigger.

Content Warning

This article is going to contain graphic content not suitable for immature audiences. There will be depictions of violence and great emotional trauma. If you cannot handle such a mature topic, a topic meant for adults, then I advise you do not read any further. Names, dates, and locations have been altered or removed to protect the privacy of all individuals involved.

Another Day on the Beat

It was a bright and sunny day out on the beautiful Florida coast, and officer Blake was on his way back to the precinct to file reports and throw in the towel until his next shift. He had been up all night and was ready to get some rest.

To his dismay, he noticed an individual driving sporadically, and making a U-turn at a red light. He felt obligated to pull this individual over and so he turned on his lights, siren, and burned off toward the suspect.

The suspect pulled his truck over, an old, rusted-out Chevy pickup, and the officer approached the vehicle from the driver's side. On approach, officer Blake noticed through the back window that there was a .357 magnum sitting on the passenger seat. Now cautious, heart rate raised, the officer drew his sidearm and called to the driver.

"Sir, I'm going to need you to turn off the vehicle and step out for me."

The driver began to move around in his seat as if to hide something and that is when the officer noticed an infant between his legs on the floor. Once again the officer called out, this time with more force and authority.

"Sir, I need you to step out of the vehicle with your hands in the air, immediately!"

"F%&$ you!" was all the officer received in return as he noticed the driver reach for the weapon in his passenger seat. Officer Blake was now unsure whether or not he should end the life of this man to save the child's and his own, and he hesitated to pull the trigger, thinking he could still deescalate the situation.

"Don't you dare pick up that weapon, motherf$%&er! Freeze!" officer Blake called out to no avail, as the driver burned out and sped off.

Officer Blake was in a more-than-slight panic as he rushed back to his patrol cruiser, and upon arrival he took off after the suspect and radio'd in that he was now in a high-speed pursuit.

Police love a good car chase, do not tempt them.
Police love a good car chase, do not tempt them. | Source

A Bitter End

As officer Blake pursued the suspect, now going about 120 miles per hour down the Florida coast, he continued to report what had occurred over his radio to the dispatcher. Backup would soon be joining in on the chase.

Weaving in and out of traffic, officer Blake could feel the nervous sweat dripping down his nose. Frantically, he wiped it off into his inner arm trying to maintain control of the vehicle and eye contact with the pursuit. He attempted to hail the driver on his vehicle's speaker.

"Pull over to the side of the road and toss the weapon out!" he said out of desperation, knowing full well that no one can understand what is being said over those crappy speakers.

That is when the suspect hung the infant officer Blake had seen earlier out of the window, holding it precariously by the back of its shirt. Seeing the infant crying, dangling out of a car window as it traveled well over 100 miles per hour, set officer Blake's mind on a war path he would never return from. Officer Blake wanted this suspect to suffer for what he was doing, and he knew he'd be the first to get his hands on him when the chase finally came to an end.

Eventually, the driver pulled the child back into the vehicle, by officer Blake's observation it was because he seemed to be losing grip, and the infant was replaced by the .357. Backup was now on scene and in pursuit behind officer Blake.

They kept trying to reach him over the car speakers, demanding that he pull over and surrender himself, and after about an hour of pursuit the man pulls off onto a median where he'd sit for a few minutes as officers boxed him in and began negotiating.

Officer Blake was eagerly awaiting his chance to make the arrest as his lieutenant tried to talk the suspect into his inevitable surrender. However, the suspect had no intentions of being taken alive.

The officers heard two loud bangs and saw blood splatter onto the windows of the vehicle. Unable to contain himself, officer Blake rushed to the driver's side with his weapon drawn and pulled the door open. What he saw upon opening the door would haunt him and his fellow officers for the rest of their lives.

Inside of the car was the infant sitting on the suspect's lap, it's brain could be found in chunks all over the floor, and a mixture of powdered bone, blood, and brain matter adorned the steering wheel. Bits of the suspect's skull cap, with brain matter still clinging to it, was laying on the passenger seat and blood dripped down the back window.

Upon seeing this gruesome sight, officer Blake fell to his knees in a tearful rage, screaming at the top of his lungs in a pain no man should ever be made to feel. From this day forward he swore to himself to pull the trigger, and he would come to understand that the public pays no mind to anything further than their own virtue signaling.

You need to consider every side before casting public judgement. You're hurting many if you don't.
You need to consider every side before casting public judgement. You're hurting many if you don't. | Source

Think Before You Speak

As a longstanding proponent of law enforcement reform, I'll be the first to tell you that I question every officer-involved shooting with the utmost attention to, and scrutiny of detail. I firmly believe that most officer-involved shootings are avoidable, but that is because I have been in more-dire situations that I was properly trained for, and reached peaceful conclusions. Before you automatically consider an officer guilty, think back on the outcome of this story I just told you.

Had the officer in this story pulled the trigger the second the suspect had reached for his weapon, that infant would most likely be a grown man today. The officers involved wouldn't still be dreaming about that nightmarish scene almost every night, either. If the trigger had been pulled, then perhaps multiple lives could have been saved, including the officers who went on to commit suicide due to their experiences in the line of duty.

I know that many of you will never live through the type of ordeals that see brain and bone matter become intimate knowledge you possess, but that doesn't mean you can't show some compassion, understanding, and sympathy before you speak. Even further, if kindness is not something you are capable of, then settle for remaining impartial and seeking the facts. You could be saving a life by refraining from expressing your ignorant opinions, or at the very least seeking unarguable facts before doing so.

Remember, all lives matter, even most of those lives that end others in the line of duty. Be the impartial justice we crave, the justice that is so direly lacking in the world.

Comments

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    • Bushra Iqbal profile image

      Anya Ali 

      11 months ago from Rabwah, Pakistan

      Well-written and thought-provoking.

    • Kyler J Falk profile imageAUTHOR

      Kyler J Falk 

      11 months ago from California

      Very true, Fran, it would be nice to see the guilty held accountable for their actions. However, I also worry about those who will be thrown under the bus for political reasons, such as we've seen in the past with youth homicide cases. In the digital age, it is impossible to find juries who haven't been tainted by news, or social influence.

      It is a strange, polarizing world we live in.

      Thanks for reading!

    • powers41 profile image

      fran rooks 

      11 months ago from Toledo, Ohio

      Kyler, what a sad story. As to the rash of police shootings, all facts must be known before judgments made. Things are not always as they seem. But I also think police unions also need to hold them accountable if found guilty. It's true, a policeman can kill, be found guilty, and fired and still collect full benefits!!!

    • Kyler J Falk profile imageAUTHOR

      Kyler J Falk 

      11 months ago from California

      As an avid weapon enthusiast and owner of multiple firearms I can't relate to the idea that owning a weapon puts you more at risk for being shot by law enforcement compared to other countries. When serving in the ME, the sandbox if you will, we face civilians carrying AK-variants and other firearms all the time. In these countries, we are the invaders, but still expected to uphold peace at a level that is, thus far, unprecedented in the US as it concerns law enforcement.

      These are the dangers of allowing the uneducated and inexperienced a chance to weigh in on situations outside of their reality, and why the only true solution to the problems we face are extensive and ongoing training. If the military can pull it off in tenser situations, then the comfort of those in the states can handle a little more strenuous training.

      Then again, I'm sipping on a glass of aged whisky as I type this, resting from a day of street riots and racial-unrest. Peace be upon you, and may your endeavors be ever-fruitful.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      11 months ago from Gondwana Land

      One of the problems I see here, and why there are so many police shootings in the USA as opposed to in Australia, is that it is legal to carry a gun there and so there is always the risk that the person pulled over or questioned by police is carrying a gun.

      Here, that is perhaps something like a 1% chance if not less. That’s not saying police shootings don’t happen here, but it is very rare and usually only if the suspect has threatened the officer with a weapon.

      It is a difficult situation, and an answer is not easy. We need police, but we don’t need them killing unarmed people. They should be trained that if they deem the situation is risky enough to warrant shooting, shoot to wound first.

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