This is a discussion on 911 Operator Tells Homeowner to Put Her Gun Away ?? within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; No problem....
"I do what I do." Cpl 'coach' Bowden, "Southern Comfort".
The dispatcher has no authority which is binding by any law to demand anything of you. Period, end of story on that one! They are not there with you to assess the situation (they are not the man on the ground). They are not even remotely trained in any aspect of lethal force encounters, or the laws regarding such.
Think for a moment about what their job description really is. They are not attorneys and they are not sworn law enforcement officers with power of arrest. Nor are they responsible for handling your decisions regarding your personal protection.
A dispatcher tells me to put down my weapon? Sorry ma'am or sir, but you can go pound sand!
The homeowner panics and is involved in a bad shoot... Well, sucks to be them, because they are going to get gigged on it.
"The gun is the great equalizer... For it is the gun, that allows the meek to repel the monsters; Whom are bigger, stronger and without conscience, prey on those who without one, would surely perish."
Like the old saying goes: "When seconds count, the Police are only minutes away." Therefore, the advice given by the 911 operator was terrible and could have caused the homeowner to be killed if the trespasser would've been a threat. The best thing is to do is to arm yourself, call 911, stay on the phone and hold your ground in a safe room until LEO arrive. If the trespasser enters your house before LEO arrive, then one must shoot until the trespasser is no longer a threat.
Check out this video. Now this is good advice from the 911 operator in this call: "You can defend your property if you need to."
"If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. That's ridiculous... If I have a gun, what in the hell do I have to be paranoid for?" [Clint Smith - Thunder Ranch]
Well, no other details have been published. However, our PD is known for its fast response times for anything that is serious in nature. This particular incident was about 40 blocks from Police Headquarters, but I'm sure that there were officers much closer than that.
I've only called the department once myself several years ago, and two officers arrived in less than 2 minutes. The trespasser in my backyard turned out to just be a psychiatric patient off their medication. All of my doors and windows are securely locked, so I was not really fearful. It was most wise for me to have the police handle things, rather than go outside and attempt to do anything about the situation myself.
Our police department is currently being sued in a federal civil rights lawsuit for huge damages by another person with mental health problems by the name of Mark Andrew Kemp that they arrested two years ago. The lawsuit alleges use of excessive force, and a failure on the part of police to get medical help for the person. Attorney Lauren Regan of the American Civil Liberties Defense Center filed the lawsuit in US District Court. She stated in the lawsuit that Kemp’s constitutional, as well as his rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act, were violated. She said that the police were required by the Act to get him medical assistance.
This does raise a point of the extra danger of dealing with people who are impaired either from taking drugs/alcohol, or who are suffering from mental illness. For how do you know what is best to do in dealing with such people? And how do you know which are harmless, and which might potentially be dangerous?
It seems that the law now requires that such people be given help. And how is a homeowner going to know what is the best thing to do when dealing with such folks?
That is just another reason why I think that it is always best to let law enforcement handle any situation, unless there is a clear and immediate threat to life. For you could be dealing with a person that is either mentally impaired or intoxicated, and thus not responsible for their behavior.
alacher, that was chilling, i am seriously shaken to the bone, hope I am never in the situation that poor woman was in but she did the right thing. wow
"The value you put on the lost will be determined by the sacrifice you are willing to make to seek them until they are found."
Lance,Our police department is currently being sued in a federal civil rights lawsuit for huge damages by another person with mental health problems by the name of Mark Andrew Kemp that they arrested two years ago. The lawsuit alleges use of excessive force, and a failure on the part of police to get medical help for the person. Attorney Lauren Regan of the American Civil Liberties Defense Center filed the lawsuit in US District Court. She stated in the lawsuit that Kemp’s constitutional, as well as his rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act, were violated. She said that the police were required by the Act to get him medical assistance.
Your local department has my sympathies.
Until groups like the ACLU are abolished effective criminal enforcement cannot be accomplished. Let us not forget that it is the ACLU that created this situation in the first place by getting a majority of the people that used to be committed to State Mental Institutions, either by the courts or their families, released to the streets.
I'd tell the 911 operator to get bent...the police are minutes away....and she (the 911 operator) doesn't get a vote....then re-inforce: the BG is the raggedly-looking man....I'm the one holding the gun from inside the house. Then hang up.
Here's the thing--the other person's mental health is NOT your problem--it's LE's problem and until they show up, you HAVE to deal with it. The safety of you and your family IS your concern. If the BG is trying to break into your house and presents themselves as a threat, despite your warnings to leave....you do what you have to do. I do not recommend hugging the BG...It seems that the law now requires that such people be given help. And how is a homeowner going to know what is the best thing to do when dealing with such folks?
Because the moment WE as citizens need to concern ourselves with the other person's condition, we will always lose (i.e. lose our life, or lives of family members)...meanwhile the BG spends the rest of their life with 3 hots and a cot, appeals, amicable living conditions and not feeling any remorse.
I'd say don't overthink about the BG too much--are they a threat? Do they intend to do you (or your family) harm? Do they have a weapon (gun/bat/knife/shiv/stick/rock)? Can you retreat or get to a safe area (if not in your home)? That should pretty much cover your decision-making process...nowhere in that process is: "Does the BG need a hug/cup of coffee/blankey/meds/nap?"
Magazine <> clip - know the difference
martyr is a fancy name for crappy fighter
You have never lived until you have almost died. For those that have fought for it, life has a special flavor the protected will never know
People are animals. She was scared and felt cornered. Most animals will defend themselves when they are scared. I'm not saying she should've shot through the door. However, if he had entered the house, all bets are off.
I would rather wake up in the middle of nowhere than in any city on Earth.--Steve McQueen
As for telling someone to put their gun down, that's a huge liability for their department and most likely against their policy until an officer does arrive on scene.
The only thing that stops bad guys with guns is good guys with guns. SgtD
Based on the story I’d say the dispatcher exceeded his/her authority. Had the intruder killed the homeowner based on the instructions, the surviving family would have retired early.
“Monsters are real and so are ghosts. They live inside of us, and sometimes they win.”
~ Stephen King
Now way i would put my gun down until the police were knocking on the door.
That Oklahoma 911 operator did a good job. So did the lady who shot the perp. In these rural OK areas we have to do things a little differently. Comanche county, OK is larger than the state of Rhode Island. There are two deputies on duty during the night time and on weekends. It's going to be awhile before they can get there.
I don't care what the operator tells me I am in my own home, I will protect my castle, No way am I going to put my gun away, no way no how.
Operation Enduring Freedom Veteran
Many places that is S.O.P. We also told our trainees to tell the caller that if they have a gun in their hand when an officer shows up they might get shot. You are right, the department's primary concern here is not the callers welfare. SCOTUS has ruled that police do not have an obligation to protect any individual absent a "special relationship" with the agency. If the call taker does not tell the person to put the gun down, and the situation ends up with an officer mistakenly shooting the armed homeowner, there can be a large settlement coming. If the call taker does, and the homeowner refuses and ends up shot, that is their fault for not following the call takers instructions. If they do put it down and the bad guy gets in and hurts them, see SCOTUS note above.
A whole lot of department S.O.P. have very little to do with the best way to get the job done, but are more designed to limit exposure to civil liability cases.
Infowars- Proving David Hannum right on a daily basis
I'm assuming this happened in Oreygen since that's where the OP is from, and he said Local.
So I guess that's how they do buisness on the left side.
But here in my neck of the woods we use 911 because there is a lot of paperwork nowadays before you can bury a body legally.
We use 911 to summon help for all the paperwork involved in a legal killin.
And sometimes you need a Fire Truck or a Wambulance!
Our Dispatchers are a lot like th one in Oklahoma.
Ours asks what ammo are we using for the job.
Seriously! I think that Dispatchers Supervisors need to take a long look at their training practices if that's the norm.
I would want my Dispatcher to keep me advised as to the response time of my backup. Help me stay calm and make informed decisions. Plus, document the event.
I'm sure the Dispatchers advice was well intended, but putting the citizens safety in jeapordy by having them disarm themselves and make themselves vunerable is not smart, as her directions made the entire City Liable should this intruder been deadly.
So glad to hear it worked out this time.
What have you done to prepare for the end of civilization as we know it?