Friday, December 12, 2014

Police Shootings Of Unarmed Men Often Have Something In Common: The Waistband Defense

Huffington Post

After police officer Darren Wilson shot Michael Brown to death in August in Ferguson, Missouri, he claimed the teenager had reached into his waistband, causing Wilson to fear Brown had a weapon. Brown was unarmed.
"Guns do come out of waistbands," said Eugene O'Donnell, former police officer and current lecturer at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York. Yet the waistband claim has become a cliche of the aftermath of police shootings.
"Some departments around the country need to be reined in on a lot of this stuff," O'Donnell said, adding that the recent uproar over the killing of Brown and others is a good opportunity to address police practices before and after shootings.
Scouring recent news archives, The Huffington Post turned up many stories about police officers shooting armed suspects who reached for their waistbands. But it also turned up many stories in which police cite waistbands after shooting unarmed suspects.

24 comments:

  1. "After police officer Darren Wilson shot Michael Brown to death in August in Ferguson, Missouri, he claimed the teenager had reached into his waistband, causing Wilson to fear Brown had a weapon. Brown was unarmed."

    Lets not forget that just before he was shot, he assaulted a police officer and tried to kill him with his own gun.

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    1. So we should just forget about all the other incidents because of one case? Figures. You always have one incident that is suppose to prove 1,000 other incidents are false. Typical dishonest gun loon.

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    2. I never suggested that Anon. Every event is looked at on its own, as it should be.

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    3. This article spoke about many events. You of course ignore that and make false claims based on one incident.

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    4. "he assaulted a police officer and tried to kill him with his own gun. "

      I think those "facts" are in dispute.

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    5. "I think those "facts" are in dispute."

      Then how did Brown acquire his first gunshot wound inside the police car? Or are we still going with the shot in the back while surrendering story?

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    6. Does that mean the fat teenager was trying to "kill him with his own gun?" I don't think we can know that.

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    7. " I don't think we can know that."

      Then we move into being able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. Considering that Wilsons description of events is supported by physical evidence, they weren't even able to indict based on a much lower burden of proof.

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    8. "they weren't even able to indict based on a much lower burden of proof. "

      They DECIDED not to indict. That's different than not having been able to.

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    9. And now the witness who supported Wilson's claim has changed his story. How convenient.

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    10. "They DECIDED not to indict. That's different than not having been able to."

      The likely decided to follow the prosecutor's instructions in the level of proof needed to indict. Thats what juries are supposed to do.

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    11. Anon, we discussed in another post the multitude of stories and about how they changed over time. Especially when they got caught being untruthful during their testimoney.
      I cant recall if Brown's partner in crime changed his story after the physical evidence called into question his truthfullness.

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    12. If the most important witness to the officer's actions has changed his testimony, he should be investigated for lying under oath and the case can be reopened. Are we trying to find the truth, or just get an officer off?

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    13. And now the prosecutor himself has stated he knowingly put people on the stand he knew would lie. This is justice?

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    14. "And now the prosecutor himself has stated he knowingly put people on the stand he knew would lie. This is justice?"

      It is Anon. Its the job of the prosecutor to present the evidence and the jury to make a determination based on that evidence.

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  2. Sometimes its really hard to follow you Mike. You have said that the only ones who should have guns are the police, because you know, they protect us and we shouldn't protect ourselves. Then you go after the police depts. because of other accusations. Or the military, or armed security and so on.

    Is it only whoever holds the gun that you attack Mike, or is it something else. Or is there a bandwagon involved somehow. Or is it that your just a gun hater and anyone that holds or uses the gun is hated as well.

    Its hard to follow someone that is not consistent or has a standard.

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    1. "You have said that the only ones who should have guns are the police"

      LIE

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  3. The wasteband scenario, while understanble is problematic for a number of reasons, yes a person could be reaching for a weapon, or they could be simply trying to pull up their pants or they could be trying to lift their shirt to show they are unarmed. Simple solution to the pulling up their pants, where a belt so your damn pants down fall in the first place. The showing they are unarmed can be adressed, as cops in ca are trained, have them raise their shirt or raise your own shirt by pulling up in the back of the collar, shows plenty of real estate to show the individual is unarmed and prevent s hands from being anywhere near the common weapon carry locations. And yes usually the reach for the wasteband is indicative of reaching for a weapon. And a fact I have repeatedly stated not having a weapon is not and cannot be considered the same as not being a threat.
    MikeZ

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    1. How about if cops don't shoot until they see the gun. To do so demands an indictment and trial. That would simplify the whole deal.

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    2. "To do so demands an indictment and trial. "

      If there isn't enough evidence to bring an indictment, then a trial would be pointless. And Brown sort of set the tone of the encounter by assaulting Wilson. And as I said just above, grabbed for Wilson's gun.

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    3. How about cops wait until they're already shot at or have holes in them? That would simplify things don't you think? The process was set in motion as soon as brown grabbed at Wilsons pistol. Clearly you have never found yourself in one of those types of scenarios and for that I envy you. I had a friend who is dead because he waited to long, and others who went home at the end of the day because they responded quickly and correctly.But your Monday morning quarterbacking and your outside looking in assessment are devoid of any connection to the real world. And in response to your statement that to do so demands and indictment and trial you are wrong on many levels.
      MikeZ

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    4. "Clearly you have never found yourself in one of those types of scenarios and for that I envy you."

      Tell us about your personal experience - or has there been more than one?

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  4. Several as a matter of fact, fortunately I didn't have to take a life because as I had the suspect at gun point a fellow officer was able to get into a better position to taze him, I also got into a grapple with a suspect, and he did go for my firearms, it was only after my partner was able to get him to submit with an arm lock and we got him into custody that I discovered that he had been able to defeat one of the two secondary retention systems on my holster, I have another friend who was shot and killed with his own gun after a grapple, his dept did not have tasers at the time. And while overseas I wastched a friend get shot 6 times with an ak 47. The ak was in the hands of an 8 year old boy. One of the other Matines opened fire as he had a clearer lane than myself. Hopefully that's an adequate explanation of my personal experience.
    MikeZ

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    1. More than adequate. I forgot you were a cop.

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