Know your target

This is a discussion on Know your target within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Police kill man who was seeking help Police in North Carolina shot and killed a man running toward them Saturday morning -- but he may ...

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  1. #1
    Member Array diver1102's Avatar
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    Know your target

    Police kill man who was seeking help

    Police in North Carolina shot and killed a man running toward them Saturday morning -- but he may have just been looking for help after a car wreck.

    Read more: WPTV Wireless: Police kill man who was seeking help

    It sounds from the evidence in the article that there wasnt a whole lot of verbal exchanges. Someone had an itchy trigger finger that cost a young man his life for seeking help.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Know your target, indeed.

    That's just bad luck in the extreme, if as reported. Have a crash just down the road, head to the nearest house, but that house happens to be swarming with LEO's looking for a possibly armed assailant who'd been attempting to break into that exact house, and you happen to roughly match the description of the assailant. Some days, it just doesn't pay to get up in the morning.

    It begs the question: How does running toward LEO's equate to being a deadly threat? He'd not have been surreptitious with use of his hands, as they'd almost certainly have been out waving at the LEO's and clearly empty. Can't imagine he'd have been much of a threat. And one would think strong command voice from two or more LEO's and drawing-down on the person (in such a situation of hunting for a nearby assailant) would have been sufficient to halt a truly innocent new arrival who was unrelated to the scene at hand.

    Also makes a citizen appreciate the simple fact that Itchy Trigger Finger Syndrome can affect everyone, police included. Makes sense to approach armed LE as though one's approaching a bear (in a sense), knowing they're heavily armed and knowing full well they don't know you from Adam. Better to avoid wailing + waving arms + running full-tilt toward them + doing a remarkably good imitation of, oh say, a possibly-armed assailant in that neighborhood which brought them there that morning. Good reminder for us all.
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    Distinguished Member Array Doghandler's Avatar
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    It's quite possible the victim lost his "rational thinking cap" during the crash, maybe his sound processor too? Looks like at least one cop wasn't wearing his thinking cap either, an unfortunate and regrettably deadly situation.

    Failure to maintain control all around I guess. Dang...
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    VIP Member Array tdave's Avatar
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    Sad two lives destroyed.

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    The thread title says it all. From my own experience, an attempted burglary might well be something else entirely.
    "When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk."
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    Looks like a situation where an officer DESERVES to be crucified. "Voluntary manslaughter" seems light, he can easily plead down to involuntary and be out in a couple of years. They should go for second-degree murder, IMHO.

    As much as I believe in supporting our under-appreciated police, when an officer is charged with a crime, he should be treated no differently than any other citizen.
    "Yet this government never of itself furthered any enterprise, but by the alacrity with which it got out of the way... The character inherent in the American people has done all that has been accomplished; and it would have done somewhat more, if the government had not sometimes got in its way."

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    From article;


    The crash was so severe that authorities now believe Ferrell had to climb out of the back window, another affiliate WBTV reported.

    He ran to the closest house for help.

    The woman inside thought it was her husband.

    "To her surprise, it was an individual that she did not know or recognize," Monroe told WBTV. "She immediately closed the door, hit her panic alarm, called 911."

    The man stood outside and "continued to attempt to gain the attention of the homeowner," a police statement said.
    END..

    OK,
    I'm going to plat Devils Advocate here, and say that if you are involved in a crash, the best bet usually is to stay at the wreck, unless the area is so remote that getting help in that manner is not feasible.
    It doesn't say at what hour of the morning it was, (was it 0' Dark:30).
    And you go banging on a door and the homeowners are supposed to calmly listen to you go off(possibly speaking incoherently) about this and that?

    In fact HE was the individual the cops were called to the location in the first place for.
    It almost sounded as though they were there on an unrelated call and he "just happened upon them", but in their minds he was "their guy"

    Tragic, but IMHO, the officer was in a tight spot, they already fired a stun gun, to no affect, and if all orders(if any) directed by police to stop were ignored by Mr. Ferrell, then who is really to blame?

    Tough call, but maybe the investigators know a lot more than the article is sharing.
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    Senior Member Array Oldpsufan's Avatar
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    The man that was shot played safety at Florida A&M. As far as I know this is an all black college. They didn't say, but it's possible he was black. It's a shame it happened that way regardless.
    This is just an FYI, I don't mean to start a problem.

    FAMU: Unarmed man shot by police officer in Charlotte, NC, was a former football player - The Washington Post
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    http://www.charlotteobserver.com/201...l#.UjXpI3_pfec

    Excerpt from article:

    Ferrell apparently walked to the nearest house, about a half-mile from the accident, and was “banging on the door viciously,” Monroe said. The woman who lives there thought the man at her door was her husband coming home late from work.

    But when she saw Ferrell instead, she shut the door and called police because she thought he was trying to rob her.

    Officers received a call shortly after 2:30 a.m. about an attempted break-in at a residence in the 7500 block of Reedy Creek Road.

    The three officers from the Hickory Grove division who responded to the scene came across a man matching the description of the possible suspect, and they surrounded him. The man “immediately charged” at the police, Monroe said.
    Something just doesn't add up.

    Viciously banging yet thought it was her husband home from work? Very odd.

    Why did she think she was being robbed?

    Why would a crash victim sprint at police?

    Why did he not call 911 from a cell phone?

    Why did he not tell the woman he needed help?

    FWIW I'm no LEO worshipper but I can see where this LEO felt he would have been justified in shooting, especially If the guy looked like heck, clothes amiss, dirty, bloody as I'd expect you'd look like if you drove your car down an embankment into a tree and had to crawl out the back window and back up a hill, although I cannot attribute his behavior strictly to "shock." In 30+ years in EMS I have never seen a car crash patient act like this. I'm betting he had no significant injuries outside the possibility of a head trauma but even that coupled with running at the LEOs seems unusual.

    So let's say YOU are the LEO (or guy walking his dog) and this (assumption) ZOMBIE LOOKING form comes full blast at you with a Taser having no effect. Now what?
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    VIP Member Array packinnova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by paramedic70002 View Post
    CMPD officer charged in fatal shooting | CharlotteObserver.com

    Excerpt from article:



    Something just doesn't add up.

    Viciously banging yet thought it was her husband home from work? Very odd.

    Why did she think she was being robbed?

    Why would a crash victim sprint at police?

    Why did he not call 911 from a cell phone?

    Why did he not tell the woman he needed help?

    FWIW I'm no LEO worshipper but I can see where this LEO felt he would have been justified in shooting, especially If the guy looked like heck, clothes amiss, dirty, bloody as I'd expect you'd look like if you drove your car down an embankment into a tree and had to crawl out the back window and back up a hill, although I cannot attribute his behavior strictly to "shock." In 30+ years in EMS I have never seen a car crash patient act like this. I'm betting he had no significant injuries outside the possibility of a head trauma but even that coupled with running at the LEOs seems unusual.

    So let's say YOU are the LEO (or guy walking his dog) and this (assumption) ZOMBIE LOOKING form comes full blast at you with a Taser having no effect. Now what?
    Pretty much agreed. I'm not usually one for jumping on the LEO's bandwagon when they've determined it necessary to shoot, however, given the circumstances I find it hard... The guy was responding to a B&E call, shows up and some nut covered in blood is rushing him and the other LEO's taser fails to stop him... Bad deal. What I want to know is what the deal is with the nutty homeowner.

    Someone is banging on your door screaming for help and covered in blood and your response is to call 911 and report a B&E in progress? Seriously? Was this chick trippin or something? Have they tested her? Pull your big girl panties up, pay attention to what's going on, keep your shtuff in check and report as accurate as you can to 911. Geebus.
    "My God David, We're a Civilized society."

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    Senior Member Array Old_Dog's Avatar
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    I do not think it was a matter of knowing the target. The officer knew his target and hit it. This was a case of incompetence because there was no report of a break in other than someone rang a door bell at a house and the owner, assuming it was her husband, slammed the door when she saw that it was not and called the police. There was no reason to believe she was in any danger or that the person was trying to break in. I have to believe that the LEO got aggressive with an innocent person and it escalated from there.
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    Times Square shooting: NYPD officers shoot two innocent bystanders near Times Square - CBS News

    This one from New York is a know your target. Two innocent pedestrians injured and person shot at completely missed.

    The courts will tell us if the officer feared for his life in the dead person in the wreck.

  14. #13
    Distinguished Member Array Doghandler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old_Dog View Post
    I do not think it was a matter of knowing the target. The officer knew his target and hit it. This was a case of incompetence because there was no report of a break in other than someone rang a door bell at a house and the owner, assuming it was her husband, slammed the door when she saw that it was not and called the police. There was no reason to believe she was in any danger or that the person was trying to break in. I have to believe that the LEO got aggressive with an innocent person and it escalated from there.
    Interesting observation, Old_Dog. Given my experience in emergency rooms, psych, and neuro units over the last, twenty five or so years, I'd have to say that the person responsible for de-escalating the situation failed miserably.

    Speaking of de-escalating, and not that I'd like to turn this thread into a circular argument, but... Where's South Narc when you need him?
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    Distinguished Member Array Dan060's Avatar
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    It's sad no matter what may or may not have happened.

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    Surrounded by other cops, I have a hard time how how the officer felt that the victim was an imminent lethal threat with no weapon in sight.

    At my rural place, hopefully a locked gate at the road will keep this from happening. There are other doors more accessible.
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