WA state trooper shoots crazed man on I-5

WA state trooper shoots crazed man on I-5

This is a discussion on WA state trooper shoots crazed man on I-5 within the Law Enforcement, Military & Homeland Security Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I just hope the trooper is given a justified shoot ruling. He tased the guy and ended up having to shoot him after the trooper ...

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  1. #1
    Member Array rathos's Avatar
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    WA state trooper shoots crazed man on I-5

    I just hope the trooper is given a justified shoot ruling. He tased the guy and ended up having to shoot him after the trooper was being strangled.

    http://www.kptv.com/news/14935406/detail.html

    FEDERAL WAY, Wash. -- An Olympia man who was fatally shot by a Washington State Patrol trooper on Interstate 5 on Christmas Day has been identified as 28-year-old Aaron Larson.

    The King County medical examiner's office said Thursday that Larson died of multiple gunshot wounds. It is ruling the death a homicide, but that only means that a human killed another human.

    The ruling can be different from what police investigators and prosecutors conclude.

    The shooting occurred in the northbound HOV lane near South 320th Street in Federal Way after Larson ran into traffic. Officials said Larson took his clothing off, hit vehicles with his belt and tried to open vehicle doors.

    The patrol said trooper S. Michael Cheek used his service gun to shoot Larson after his Taser did not stop him.

    The 36-year-old Cheek is on paid administrative leave as the Federal Way police investigate the shooting at the request of the patrol..
    ‘‘To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.’’

    — George Mason


  2. #2
    VIP Member Array matiki's Avatar
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    The latest: Father to Sue

    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/...tml?source=rss

    Father says he'll sue patrol for killing son

    THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

    CENTRALIA -- The father of a man shot by a state trooper on Christmas Day says he plans to sue the Washington State Patrol for using excessive force.

    Jerry Larson of Ethel says his son was suffering from depression after several deaths in the family and had never been so aggressive in public. But on Christmas Day, 28-year-old Aaron Larson ran into traffic on Interstate 5 near Federal Way and was shot and killed by a trooper after a shock by a Taser failed to subdue him.

    The incident is still under investigation. Trooper S. Michael Cheek is on administrative leave.

    The State Patrol says the Federal Way Police Department is investigating whether the use of force against Larson was justified.
    I'm on the Troopers side on this one. He was a danger to the public and the Trooper had to make contact with him to keep him from causing a terrible accident that could have killed dozens of innocent people. Unfortunately, during that contact he got the upper hand and the Trooper had to shoot him.

    I applaud the Trooper for trying to protect motorists and using his Taser first, to try and protect the perp as well.
    "Wise people learn when they can; fools learn when they must." - The Duke of Wellington

  3. #3
    VIP Member Array wmhawth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by matiki View Post
    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/...tml?source=rss

    I'm on the Troopers side on this one. He was a danger to the public and the Trooper had to make contact with him to keep him from causing a terrible accident that could have killed dozens of innocent :
    I hope you are right but I can imagine this one being a tough one. Need to see more facts.

  4. #4
    VIP Member Array matiki's Avatar
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    Original Article

    Here's the original follow up article with more details. The later articles (as usual for a WA paper) are watered down to support a more controversial view.

    http://archives.seattletimes.nwsourc...&date=20071227

    Man's bizarre behavior on I-5 still a mystery

    By Jennifer Sullivan

    Seattle Times staff reporter

    Related

    * Archive | Investigation under way to see if suspect fatally shot on I-5 was on drugs

    Jerry Larson was trying to get some sleep Monday night when his 27-year-old son, Aaron, sat on the edge of the bed, asking for advice.

    Jerry Larson said he shooed his son away, telling him to go enjoy the family's Christmas Eve turkey dinner. He promised they would talk after he had a few hours of sleep, but by the time Larson awoke his son was gone.

    The next day, Aaron Larson was shot to death by a State Patrol trooper during a bizarre incident on Interstate 5 in Federal Way.

    Several people called 911 around 2:30 p.m. Tuesday to report that a man had jumped out of a moving car near the onramp at South 320th Street. Witnesses said he dropped his pants around his ankles and was exposing himself, said Stacy Flores, spokeswoman for the Federal Way Police Department, which is investigating the shooting.

    By the time troopers arrived, the man had his pants back on but he had his belt in his hand and was using it to strike passing cars, Flores said. He also tried to pry open some car doors.

    The man tried to choke Trooper Mike Cheek and struck him repeatedly with his hands and fists, Flores said. Cheek used a Taser on Larson but it was ineffective, she added.

    Cheek then shot the man. While the King County Medical Examiner's Office hasn't released the man's name, his father identified him as Aaron Larson.

    Cheek was not hurt and has been placed on administrative leave, the State Patrol said. Cheek has been with the State Patrol for 11 years and has not been involved in another fatal shooting while with the department.

    Authorities are investigating whether Larson was under the influence of drugs. The King County Medical Examiner's Office said Wednesday it is awaiting toxicology tests.

    "His behavior was unusual, not normal," Flores said.

    At least one 911 call was made the car in which Larson was in, with the caller indicating the man had a handgun, police said. Larson's girlfriend, her son and Larson's younger brother were all riding in the car when he hopped out, according to Jerry Larson.

    Detectives are investigating whether Larson was armed. It's unknown whether he drew a weapon at any point during Tuesday's incident, Flores said. Jerry Larson said Wednesday he doesn't believe his son was using drugs because he was working for a Chehalis-based trucking company that conducts random drug tests on its drivers.

    Stephanie Axelson, secretarial payroll director at M&M Transport, said Larson tested negative for drugs when he was hired three months ago. She said he hadn't been tested since.

    Jerry Larson, 50, of Ethel, Lewis County, said his son had recently been depressed because things weren't going well with his girlfriend and that he didn't like living in Olympia. Aaron Larson grew up near Snoqualmie and graduated from Mount Si High School, his father said. He moved to Honolulu after high school, but recently returned to the region, settling in Olympia with his girlfriend and the woman's young son.

    Axelson said Larson often talked about his family life and bragged about being "a dad."

    "He was really a nice guy. He wasn't a loud personality at all," Axelson said. "This has totally got the people who knew him the best completely dumbfounded. This was not the Aaron we knew."

    Jerry Larson said his son had been known to be confrontational and would never back down from a fight. While he said he hasn't talked to anyone with the State Patrol, he thinks troopers could have calmed his son down instead of shooting him.

    "Any man that gets out there on the freeway with a belt buckle in his hand, what's he going to do, dent a few cars?" he said. "I just think they gunned him down."

    Jennifer Sullivan: 206-464-8294 or jensullivan@seattletimes.com
    "Wise people learn when they can; fools learn when they must." - The Duke of Wellington

  5. #5
    Ex Member Array FN1910's Avatar
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    Whether or not he was depressed or on drugs did not make him less of a danger to the public. I read about this on anothere board and to me the LEO had little choice. I am on the Officer's side with this one.

    BTW - Ever been hit with a belt buckle, it hurts and a man out in the middle of Interstate traffic can cause all kinds of fatal wrecks.

  6. #6
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    It sounds like a case of excited delirium.

    Sometimes people have mental illnesses that dont surface over time, they are more like a volcano. They just erupt. It might be drug induced, depression or it was just time to explode... who knows. It sounds like this might have been the case for Aaron.
    Its very hard to gain control of a person like this. I've been there. No pain compliance works, and if you cant simply over power them, your not left with much of a choice. It sounds as if the Trooper acted OK, but we have limited details to judge from.
    "Just blame Sixto"

  7. #7
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    He was having trouble with his girlfriend?
    Running on the freeway with his pant around his ankles and hitting passing cars with a belt...Mmmmm...that would spoil a relationship!

    This 'fruitcake' was an accident looking for a place to happen...and it did.

    Sounds like the officer had no choice...

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  8. #8
    VIP Member Array Supertac45's Avatar
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    Why wouldn't it be justified? Good shooting in my book on a nut.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Array Roadrunner's Avatar
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    Regardless of the circumstances leading up to the point where the perp was choking a police officer, once he started doing that he was fair game IMO. Good shoot by the officer based on the information shown here.
    - Kurt
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  10. #10
    VIP Member Array paramedic70002's Avatar
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    I don't know...

    Seems of late the LEOs are being taught that the Tazer is a cure all, and anybody who doesn't respond to it is to be shot. So the Officers are acting within their training. But IMHO the training is bad.

    LEOs like the Tazer because it removes them from physical confrontation. Years ago I liked pepper spray for the same reason, but I only had one suspect who failed to comply, and I did not feel the need to shoot him.

    Used to be that LEOs actually got physical with suspects on a regular basis, because they didn't have all the fancy stuff they have now. Reminds me of the LEO's quote in Demolition Man, "We're Police Officers, we're not trained to handle violence!" Sure advancements are great, but have we really progressed when the dead suspect today would have been the beaten suspect of yesteryear?

    This suspect is likely having a mental episode. To be killed for being mentally ill is quite unfortunate, bordering on criminal. Yes he has the capacity to injure the LEO, but hey, didn't somebody tell the Trooper his job was dangerous when he applied? Sometimes you gotta get in there and bunt. I certainly have to do some unsavory things in my job; I don't have the option of shooting a patient if I don't like how they are behaving, even if I am threatened.

    I think this whole idea of "hands off law enforcement" is going to get worse before it gets better.
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

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  11. #11
    VIP Member Array AZ Husker's Avatar
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    Sorry to say, I agree. I retired six years ago, and long for the days when a hands-on situation solved the problem. We were trained in hand to hand combat. During the last half of my career, I saw the batons disappear, PC became mandatory, and shootings skyrocket.

  12. #12
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roadrunner View Post
    Regardless of the circumstances leading up to the point where the perp was choking a police officer, once he started doing that he was fair game IMO. Good shoot by the officer based on the information shown here.
    Agreed.

    It matters not what your state of mind might have been or if you got tased and it hurt or the cop was rude to you during the stop or he said some 'ish about your momz and your breeding...or what ever the heck happened.
    You go and lay hands to a cop and yeah son, that there is the crossed line of no return. You try to choke a cop out and that is attempted murder.
    Hell you try to choke out a civilian Joe Blow on the streets and that's an okay lawful pass to pop you one or three as a defensive lifesaving maneuver.

    It's simple really.
    Do not resist arrest.
    Do not lay hands on a po-po.
    Do wait for your day in court to plead your case.
    Do not like any of this and ignore the above, and the last thing yo ever see might be a badge and a gun.

    - Janq
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  13. #13
    Member Array retiredswine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wmhawth View Post
    I hope you are right but I can imagine this one being a tough one. Need to see more facts.
    Why is that sir,..... I'm truly curious. There's a multiple reasons why a lawman must shoot an unarmed man, which in and of itself is a misnomer. Everytime a lawman arrives on the scene of anything, it is an armed encounter. I see your point but it is statements such as these that inflame situations that shouldn't be elevated to begin with.

  14. #14
    Member Array rathos's Avatar
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    I think I would have to disagree with you on this one. He tased him first, that didn't work. He fought with the man, but he was crazied and didn't respond to pain and the LEO was not able to get him into cuffs. When the man started to choke him and the officer could not get away, his only choice was to shoot. The WSP hasn't had tasers for very long, and they don't rely on them like some agencies out there.

    Quote Originally Posted by paramedic70002 View Post
    I don't know...

    Seems of late the LEOs are being taught that the Tazer is a cure all, and anybody who doesn't respond to it is to be shot. So the Officers are acting within their training. But IMHO the training is bad.

    LEOs like the Tazer because it removes them from physical confrontation. Years ago I liked pepper spray for the same reason, but I only had one suspect who failed to comply, and I did not feel the need to shoot him.

    Used to be that LEOs actually got physical with suspects on a regular basis, because they didn't have all the fancy stuff they have now. Reminds me of the LEO's quote in Demolition Man, "We're Police Officers, we're not trained to handle violence!" Sure advancements are great, but have we really progressed when the dead suspect today would have been the beaten suspect of yesteryear?

    This suspect is likely having a mental episode. To be killed for being mentally ill is quite unfortunate, bordering on criminal. Yes he has the capacity to injure the LEO, but hey, didn't somebody tell the Trooper his job was dangerous when he applied? Sometimes you gotta get in there and bunt. I certainly have to do some unsavory things in my job; I don't have the option of shooting a patient if I don't like how they are behaving, even if I am threatened.

    I think this whole idea of "hands off law enforcement" is going to get worse before it gets better.
    ‘‘To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.’’

    — George Mason

  15. #15
    VIP Member Array matiki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rathos View Post
    I think I would have to disagree with you on this one. He tased him first, that didn't work. He fought with the man, but he was crazied and didn't respond to pain and the LEO was not able to get him into cuffs. When the man started to choke him and the officer could not get away, his only choice was to shoot. The WSP hasn't had tasers for very long, and they don't rely on them like some agencies out there.
    I have to agree with rathos. You also have to keep in mind, he was in the middle of a very busy highway. There was the potential to become a pedestrian victim of a car accident at any moment. You can't just let someone run around a busy freeway, he had to make contact. If it was a one lane highway and the trooper could have prevented traffic from passing his cruiser, then sure, he could have waited to make contact. But that is not the case here.
    "Wise people learn when they can; fools learn when they must." - The Duke of Wellington

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