When citizens are wrongfully shot by a police officer, should he or she be charged?
Given the latest rash of officer shootings of citizens either without arrest or probable cause to detain, it is apparent that a serious problem exists. Being cognizant that this does not mean that all police officers are bad, the reality of the matter is that there are some bad cops acting under color of the law, but in blatant disregard of citizen's civil rights.
If a private citizen would be charged under the same circumstances, then yes, the police officer should also be charged. Being a police officer doesn't mean that they are exempt from following laws.
Well, yeah. Just because you're a police officer doesn't mean you get to be above the law. Hell, maybe now more officers will actually pay attention during the firearms classes. Or, y'know, the people who join the police force just to go on a power trip will think twice about doing so, and only the honest, hard-working officers who genuinely want to protect and serve will remain.
Wow, it is a blessing to see people telling the truth about this issue. Thank you. I agree, that they should be charged. All of us should be held accountable including law enforcement officer. I also agree that it is quite embarrassing due to the fact that law enforcement officers should hold themselves to a higher standard. However, it is only just to charge them.
I am beginning to wonder where in the hell has everyone been?
Presently, there is not a "rash" of police shootings of blacks. It is not something that just cropped up. Cops have been killing blacks for years, long before anyone on this site was even born.
What is happening now is, the major print-and-electronic media has had a product dropped on their laps that is making them a whole lot of money. And at the same time, numerous black politicians, black activists and black preachers are using the cop killings as a means for them to build reputations for themselves or to further solidify the reputations that they already have.
It all started with the Trayvon Martin incident and blossomed from that. Today, thousands of blacks all over the country are running around behaving as though blacks' getting snuffed out by cops is something new.
Where in the hell was the media, the politicians, the activists and the preachers before Trayvon Martin got taken out?
Now, here is what is really happening: The number of blacks that get killed by white cops and white civilians is a mere drop in the bucket compared with massive number of blacks who get murdered by other blacks. In fact, based on current FBI statistics, the chance of a black getting killed by another black is 40 times higher than a black getting killed by a white.
All of the moaning and groaning that blacks are doing over the small number that is being killed by whites is nothing but a case of blacks being as "unliberated" in the way they think as their enslaved forebears were forced to be.
And because many, if not most, blacks think like slaves, their attitude is, when a black kills another black, that does not really count. The only time it counts is when one of the WHITE BOSSES kills a black.
I wasn't aware that Martin was shot by a police officer. The new things I learn on the 'net every day is fascinating.
Martin was NOT killed by a police officer. I just mentioned that his death was what set off the all the unrest that is happening now.
Maybe I am mistaken but didn't Martin go for the cop's gun and punch the cup in the eye and broke the eye socket? Maybe it was a different man.
I said "latest rash," and that no way implies that this just began. It is interesting that you mention Blacks killing Blacks. In my opinion, it is distinct from the issue of police officers killing citizens. Otherwise, you make excellent points.
There are three kinds of "wrongfully" that need to be examined. One type is the kind where a cop shoots a person where there is no need to... basically where the person offered no possible harm to innocents. A standard example of that would be a cop shooting a person in the back who is running away from a liquor store robbery where no one was harmed. No police force would consider this a "good shoot" and the officer would normally be prosecuted for such a happening.
The second kind is the ones that happen thru an accident, such as when the cop reaches for his taser and grabs the gun instead. Or, he is holding the gun on someone when his arm is jostled and he inadvertently pulls the trigger. This should not happen as a rule, and if it can be proven that the cop acted negligently there may be a case built against him.
A third kind of wrongful shooting occurs when the cop -- based upon the situation at the time -- fires and shoots a person who really didn't need shooting. Examples abound on this kind, where a person had a fake gun but the cops thought it was real, or even the person holding a cell phone in their hand and the cops thought it was a gun pointed at them. These types are hard to prosecute because the standard is what a "reasonable police officer" would do in that same circumstance with only a micro-second to act.
So you have wrongful deaths cause by deliberate and illegal actions, accidents and negligence, and by mistaken understanding of the situation. Each event needs to be judged on its own merits, and what happened two months ago with another police officer 2,000 miles away has no bearing on the judgement.
BTW... a police officer doesn't need to "arrest" someone or have "probable cause to detain" before they shoot them. Neither one has any factor in an officer's decision to shoot or not shoot.
Thank you for your answer. Regarding your statement that an officer is not required to arrest or have probable cause to detain to shoot someone, are you positing that an officer is able to shoot anyone at any time for any reason?
(Part 1) Consider a cop going into a reported domestic violence scenario. He walks into a home and spots a person with a gun. He yells to put it down and instead the person swings it at him, pointing it at the cop.
(part 2) At that point the person is neither "under arrest " nor does the cop have any PC that the person has committed any crime. There are many unknown factors here. Yet, the cop still has the right to defend himself by stopping the person
In pointing a gun at an officer, he does a right to defend himself and that is actually criminal assault in most jurisdictions. I do agree that there are circumstances where use of deadly force is appropriate. Thanks for clarifying!
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