Monday, July 13, 2009

Miami Cop Adam Tavss Kills Two in a Row

The New York Times reports on the apathy with which Miami is responding to the two fatal shootings within a week of their patrolman Adam Tavss.

The first one was Husien Shehada, which took place on June 14th. The second was Lawrence McCoy Jr., which took place three days later.

The grainy video from an outdoor security camera shows Husien Shehada walking through South Beach just after 4 a.m., then stopping and putting his hands in the air. His brother, Samer Shehada, steps beside him — then three gunshots from a police officer off-screen throw Husien Shehada to the sidewalk. “His eyes were still open,” said Samer Shehada, 31. “And when they say you can see the life leaving someone’s eyes, I could see that.”

Four days later, the same officer who shot Husien Shehada, 29 — Adam Tavss, a Miami Beach patrolman who had been on the force for three years — was involved in a second shooting. Calls to 911 suggested that each man was armed, but neither appeared to have a weapon when shot. Both later died.

The Miami Beach Police Department and the state attorney’s office are investigating the shootings. But since the first shooting on June 14, the police and lawyers representing the victims’ families have been battling for sympathy with leaks, exaggerations and omissions, and the public struggles with who to blame, who is covering up — and how much to care.

I find it hard to believe these shootings would be met with apathy. Has Miami become so savage that anything less than a major shooting in which several people are killed and wounded gets ignored?

The first incident was covered by video surveillance as well as eye-witnesses. It turned out the victim had a coat hanger under his shirt, which could have been mistaken for a weapon, not the ridiculous claim that he had an AK under his shirt, but some kind of weapon that patrolman Tavss mistook for a gun. Still, I'd say that threat was met with excessive force.

In the second shooting, the men were running away. This is unacceptable police brutality at its worst.

What's your opinion? Do you think the police should be given a break due to the incredible pressure they're under putting their lives on the line every day? Or do you think they should be held to an even higher standard as far as gun-play goes?

Has Miami become jaded to all the violence? Don't these kinds of incidents in other cities generate a mass outcry and demonstrations? What's going on down there?

Please feel free to leave a comment.


  1. The most important question is one you didn't ask: Where is Miami Mayor Manny Diaz?

    If it were a non-officer responsible for these shootings, you'd hear cries for federal interdiction.

  2. MikeB,

    Off topic, but I posted a reply to your issue of using the Bible for justification of self defense at my new blog site.

  3. Obviously the easy availability of firearms to police is at fault.

  4. AztecRed, Good point about Mayor Diaz.

  5. "Four days later, the same officer who shot Husien Shehada...was involved in a second shooting."

    To me, this is the most interesting part of the article.

    Was the cop on duty for this second shooting?

    It's pretty standard procedure to put any officer on paid administrative leave after any incident like the first shooting so an investigation can be done.

    Perhaps this was done and the whole thing was cleared up within four days, but not likely.

    But I wasn't there, so, like many of your questions soliciting opinions about stuff we're not privy to, I gots nothin.

    I admit that conjecture is more fun than facts, but I prefer boring old facts.

  6. kaveman said, "I admit that conjecture is more fun than facts, but I prefer boring old facts."

    Yeah, you and everybody else. We all like facts especially when they support our position. The problem is sometimes there aren't any or sometimes there aren't enough or sometimes they're ambiguous. In those cases we just have to have fun with conjecture.

  7. Of course you do Mike, since the facts NEVER support your position.

    Instead of using conjecture you might want to ask WHY there are never concrete facts supporting your position.

  8. While you may be surprised at the lack of reaction and support of the offiver for these killings, living in Italy you can understand how a population can act differently to a situation.
    As a poliitcal analyst, I would equate your Prime Minister's behaviour and the lack of reaction by the people living there. In any other country, a politician accussed of some of the stunts this asshole has done since coming back into power in 2008, would be thrown out of power. Instead the Italians shrug it off,like the Americans do with all the police killings and other acts of violence.

  9. Il Principe,

    We do not "shrug" off all the killing and violence. We just aren't ready to give up our freedoms to try to stop some thugs.

    U.K. has gone that route and how is it working out for them? 4 Times the violent crime rate of America....higher than South Africa.

  10. Thank Fuck I do not live in a Fucked up Country like the US. Do you know what US stands for ? Utterly Stupid.
    USA = Utterly Stupid Assholes.