walking away to die
July 30, 2003 9:27 AM   Subscribe

A heartbreaking death. Police in Shreveport, Louisiana shoot an unarmed man eight times in nine seconds.
posted by the fire you left me (52 comments total)
 
'Warning: These videos show a man being shot to death. May not be suitable viewing for children or others' followed by 'Watch the video! Watch the video! Listen to the recording!'. Tasteless.
posted by jonathanbell at 9:39 AM on July 30, 2003


The article's dated today, but the shooting happened on March 15th ("The March 15 incident almost immediately sparked an outcry in Shreveport's black community"). Is there new info here I'm missing, or is it just a slow news day in New Orleans?
posted by some chick at 9:39 AM on July 30, 2003


I'd like to applaud their ultra-classy use of exclamation points. It really captures the excitement and energy I expect when I'm about to watch someone be shot to death.
posted by emptybowl at 9:46 AM on July 30, 2003


I've seen this clip, and, y'know, I'm not a police apologist, and I won't claim that it's not excessive force, and I don't mean to sound like Rush or O'Reilly, but: If that's how you act around people with guns that have chased you through the city at 70 mph, then the fact that the story ends with you getting shot is no surprise. If you think you've just had a gun pointed at you, and you had the presence of mind to refrain from firing, and then the presumably armed person starts to walk to the entrance of a convenience store, then, yes, finding a non-lethal way to stop him is the best move, but I can't fault the police for firing. (Also, I seem to remember from the video, which I haven't seen for a few weeks, that the cops had flanked him, and that the cop that fired first was at 6 o'clock, and he fired after the guy had brandished the phone and swept clockwise from, say, 4 o'clock all the way around to 12 or so, and there was another officer at 3. So it seemed reasonable to me that the firing-first officer though that his colleague was about to have the gun pointed at him.)

I hold the police to a higher standard, both of action and inaction, of judgment and cool reserve and the whole bit. It's sad that, for whatever reason, they fired instead of pursuing nonlethal means, but it's also excusable. And you can bet that in cities of Shreveport's size, these scenarios happen all the time, and that in almost every scenario, the police find a nonlethal way out.
posted by blueshammer at 9:55 AM on July 30, 2003


I have to say that yeah, this isn't so overly obvious as "the white cops shot the black guy".

While it would have been nice if the cops had taken a few seconds to realize it was a cell phone and not a real gun, the guy took a position of holding a gun and pointing it at police officers that were yelling at him to stop, and it was after a high speed chase. I wouldn't put all the blame on the officers for the mistake, as it seems they acted as they were trained in self-defense, especially in the heat of an adrenaline-fueled chase.

Thank god for accountability and in-car video like this. Instead of it being the cops word vs. witnesses, there's a pretty clear video from multiple angles showing exactly what happened.

It is a tragedy, but I don't think the officers acted irresponsibly.
posted by mathowie at 10:20 AM on July 30, 2003


To me it looks like this guy pointed his phone at the cops with the intention of making them think it was a gun. Hell, it looks like a gun to me and I have the benefit of knowing what it is before hand. When a fugitive felon takes that type of aggressive action, he should expect no other outcome than to be shot multiple times. I think the cops are justified in this shooting.


While it would have been nice if the cops had taken a few seconds to realize it was a cell phone and not a real gun

If it had been a real gun, those few seconds would have cost them their lives.
posted by maceo at 10:22 AM on July 30, 2003


If it had been a real gun, those few seconds would have cost them their lives.

I'd rather see a cop get killed than an innocent man. It's their job, after all, to be in harm's way in place of the average citizen. Just as I'd rather see a soldier die than a civilian.

To my eye, Hudspeth doesn't seem to be pointing the phone at cops when he's shot. I understand that he did at one point, and I can absolutely see that they think it's a gun. But two cops shooting him point blank in the back as he's walking away doesn't seem like proper protocol in such a situation. This isn't a clear case of excessive force, but I think any time an unarmed person is killed by cops, there should be a thorough investigation.
posted by jpoulos at 10:30 AM on July 30, 2003 [1 favorite]


Heartbreaking? The guy led the police on a dangerous high-speed chase, then pretended to brandish a gun at them. Strikes me as suicide by police or else natural selection.

I only watched the first tape but he first holds the phone like a gun, then tries to get away. Then he waves the phone back at one officer and you can see him duck as though it is a weapon. I'm surprised it took them that long to fire.
posted by Manjusri at 10:33 AM on July 30, 2003


jpoulos: I'd rather see a cop get killed than an innocent man. It's their job...

I agree with you. But the pool that the police force draws from would be drastically reduced if make-absolutely-sure-it's-a-gun becomes official policy.

And I'll be surprised if the comment I italicized doesn't draw out an angry dissenter or two.
posted by trharlan at 10:42 AM on July 30, 2003


It's their job, after all, to be in harm's way in place of the average citizen.
Which is exactly why they should try to stay alive or is there an unending supply of willing police trainees these days?
posted by PenDevil at 10:44 AM on July 30, 2003


I'd rather see a cop get killed than an innocent man.

Leading cops on high-speed chase + pointing a cellphone at cops, pretending its a gun != innocent. Your comment reeks of bait so I won't say anymore.
posted by trillion at 10:45 AM on July 30, 2003


I'd rather see a cop get killed than an innocent man.

I can agree with that, but are you suggesting that this man is innocent? Running from the police is a felony offense.
posted by maceo at 10:48 AM on July 30, 2003


maceo: In Louisiana, it appears that "flight from an officer" is a misdemeanor, while "aggravated flight from an officer" may be a felony. I couldn't find adequate details to determine which offense the perp-turned-victim committed.

But I might be wrong
posted by trharlan at 11:07 AM on July 30, 2003


Are you suggesting that the cops are not innocent men? The video doesn't show the cops slapping high fives or anything after this happened. It was surely a tragedy, but I don't think that the cops were negligent or irresponsible in any way from what I've seen, now from different angles and everything!
posted by Pollomacho at 11:09 AM on July 30, 2003


police officers cornered and killed a black man who was pointing a cell phone at them. Police say they thought it was a gun. Many black residents say they have heard this all before

Jeez... speaking of baiting! As if the guy's color has anything to do with it. Way to make an issue out of this, except to enflame racial passions. Oh, and while you're at it, why not mention that the officer who shot the criminal was also black. Oh. Well, then. That changes everything.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 11:12 AM on July 30, 2003


I'm gonna hafta agree with some of the comments here: You lead police through a high speed chase through busy city streets, the probability of getting shot goes up. When you're forced to get out of your car after said high speed chase and run from cops screaming at you to freeze, your probability of getting shot goes even higher. As cops are chasing you, if you turn around and start doing ANYTHING except putting your hands behind your head and getting down on the ground, your probability of being shot has got to be in the high 80 percentage range, black or white in any US city.
posted by jdaura at 11:36 AM on July 30, 2003


If I were a black man in the South and white police officers were chasing me, I would also strongly consider running.

And we now see why.

[sarcasm]
That'll teach him to be black and driving in Shreveport! [/sarcasm]

Makes me wonder how many black officers the city has and what percentage of the population is black. Such things matter in preventing situations like this.

At least require diversity training for the officers and be sure to have a racially balanced force out in the streets.
posted by nofundy at 11:40 AM on July 30, 2003


I rather see neither a cop (who, on the balance, I'd also call innocent) nor an innocent man killed.

Doesn't the statement "I'd rather see a cop killed than an innocent man" dehumanize cops?

One problem in the overall equation which leads to tragedies like this - besides the culture of poverty, societal dysfunction at many levels, and even the aggressive instability of young males (black or white, it matters not) - is the common caricature "Cops=bad (always shooting black people)". Police embody a broad cross section of attitudes and - sure - they commit horrendous abuses (attacks on the WTO protestors in Seattle come to mind) but they also have to deal with the festering sores of overall societal problems which are not of their making.
posted by troutfishing at 11:43 AM on July 30, 2003


The precedents for this go way back. There was a famous trial in the old West, after two men argued in a bar, one of them coughed and hunched over slightly, then reached into his vest for his medicine, in a shiny silver case. He had halfway pulled it from his vest when the other man "saw something shiny" and shot him. The verdict was for acquittal.
In a place like the US, where, for the most part, guns are legal, they are taken into account, and the assumption is that when they are drawn, the intent is gunplay, a mutual exchange of gunfire.
This is different from, let us say, London, where now if someone reaches into their coat, everybody jumps, because a man with a gun is king, and all must do what he wants, without argument or resistance.
posted by kablam at 11:43 AM on July 30, 2003


The full news story:

http://www.nola.com/news/t-p/frontpage/index.ssf?/base/news-0/1059546480216980.xml

Edited highlights:

"Video cameras from three police cars caught various parts of the incident, starting after Hudspeth blew through a red light and was pursued for by police at speeds up to 70 mph, or about 25 mph over the speed limit. Hudspeth weaved through traffic, causing other officers to block off at least one intersection to prevent crashes.

"After pulling into a Circle K parking lot, Hudspeth was quickly boxed in by the three police cruisers. But instead of giving up when confronted by the officers, he extended his arms, pointing his silver cell phone as if it were a gun. Initially, Carmouche said, Hudspeth pointed the phone at officer Michael Armstrong, who was off camera, while another officer, Denver Ramsey, approached Hudspeth from behind, grabbed his shirt and pointed his gun at Hudspeth's head.

"But Hudspeth wriggled away from Ramsey and walked quickly from the officers, toward a fence at the end of the empty parking lot. Before he could get there, a third police officer, Steve Hathorn, approached from the other side. To Carmouche, this moment is critical, as it shows the officer ducking after Hudspeth turns around and again points his cell phone at one of his pursuers.

"The officers blast away, firing 15 bullets at Hudspeth's back in just a few seconds. Eight of the bullets found their target, killing Hudspeth.

""None (of the bullets) entered this man's body from the front. He was walking away," said state Rep. Ernest Baylor, D-Shreveport, who is black, as he watched the video from one of his offices not far from the site of the shooting.

"If a suspect is walking away from police officers, state law says they cannot shoot, said Wade Schindler, an adjunct professor at Tulane University.... Ultimately, an officer is allowed to use deadly force only if he believes his life or somebody else's is in danger, Schindler said.

"After viewing still photographs from the video, Schindler said the incident raises several questions: Why didn't the officers quickly subdue Hudspeth with mace or another nonlethal substance? Was Hudspeth on drugs or alcohol? Was there enough light in the parking lot for the officers to tell the difference between a cell phone and a gun at short range?

"Though Hudspeth's body was tested for drugs and alcohol, Shreveport officials won't release the results, citing the pending federal investigation.

"Just a month before he was killed, Hudspeth was fired from his job at a marble-product manufacturer in Bossier City, Carmouche said. Later that night, records show, he was arrested and charged with aggravated assault after his wife filed a complaint with the Bossier City Police Department, saying he had pulled a gun on her.

"...On the day of the chase, Hudspeth's wife told investigators that her husband was upset because she had just kicked him out of the house over his involvement with another woman. While Hudspeth was trying to elude the police, he was talking to his wife on his cell phone, Carmouche said, noting that she reported he had been crying.

"Hersy Jones, one of Lekesha Hudspeth's attorneys, said the video does not suggest his client's husband was trying to end his life by provoking police officers.

""That would apply if he had rushed them," Jones said. "But he ran away."
posted by Hogshead at 11:45 AM on July 30, 2003


"Hudspeth blew through a red light and was pursued for by police at speeds up to 70 mph"

My sympathy for Mr. Hudspeth ended when he blew through the red light. However, shooting him in the parking lot of a convenience store also endangered the public. A little restraint on the part of the cops would have been nice.
posted by 2sheets at 11:55 AM on July 30, 2003


I don't know if the cops are the bad guys here. The still from the video shows him pretty clearly holding something like its a gun and pointing it at the cops.

After a chase the cops are already heated up and this guy was either asking to be killed or was playing games or was fudged up on drugs and not thinking straight.

Could it have been resolved without the guy taking 8 bullets in the back? Yep.
Could it have just as easily been a gun and a cop might have died? Yep.
Did the cops do anything wrong? Probably but put yourself in the same place after the same chase and then see a shiny object being held like a gun and being pointed at you like a gun and see if you don't shoot first.
posted by fenriq at 11:59 AM on July 30, 2003


Would it make a difference if he had been text messaging "Bang! Bang!" from his cell phone while it was pointed at the cops?
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 12:06 PM on July 30, 2003


I rather see neither a cop (who, on the balance, I'd also call innocent) nor an innocent man killed.

Do I really need to clarify that I would too?

Doesn't the statement "I'd rather see a cop killed than an innocent man" dehumanize cops?

That's just silly.

Leading cops on high-speed chase + pointing a cellphone at cops, pretending its a gun != innocent.

"pretending it's a gun" is completely debatable. And leading cops on a high-speed chase is not a capital crime.

But having said that, my comment was more or less hypothetical. In general, I would rather see a cop take the bullet than an innocent civilian. The police in this case obviously had to make a judgement call as to whether they were in danger. Understandably, they believed they were. They were wrong.

Are you suggesting that the cops are not innocent men?

Let's not pretend I said things I didn't.

The video doesn't show the cops slapping high fives or anything after this happened.

So if they didn't celebrate their mistake, then it wasn't a mistake?

It was surely a tragedy, but I don't think that the cops were negligent or irresponsible in any way from what I've seen, now from different angles and everything!

Probably not, but that's what an investigation will determine. If I were a cop and I mistakenly shot an unarmed man, I would expect the incident to be investigated. Wouldn't you?
posted by jpoulos at 12:28 PM on July 30, 2003


If I were a cop and I shot an armed man who was about to activate a doomsday device in broad daylight and on national TV, I'd darn-tootin' expect to be investigated. Also cleared by the investigation. The taking of a human life deserves investigation even when it's justified.
posted by stet at 12:57 PM on July 30, 2003


Hang on... 15 shots fired and only 8 found their target? These coppers had used guns before, right?
posted by twine42 at 1:37 PM on July 30, 2003


Just for my own ammusement, I checked where 'copper' comes from. 'Cop' is short for 'copper'. Copper comes from 'cop'. Well done there.
posted by twine42 at 1:44 PM on July 30, 2003


Hitting what you're aiming at ain't always as easy as you might think. That's why guns have clips that hold more than one bullet.
posted by kindall at 1:56 PM on July 30, 2003


Just for my own ammusement, I checked where 'copper' comes from. 'Cop' is short for 'copper'. Copper comes from 'cop'. Well done there.

Isn't 'cop' an acronym for 'citizen on patrol'?
posted by blueshammer at 2:15 PM on July 30, 2003


I would have to think that "walking away" from police officers (who believe you've drawn a gun) into, say, an open field or along the side of a highway, is far different from walking toward a convenience store, presumably one filled with patrons and staff.
posted by jalexei at 2:17 PM on July 30, 2003


Isn't 'cop' an acronym for 'citizen on patrol'?

Yes it is.

This guy was clearly asking for it.
posted by Witty at 2:29 PM on July 30, 2003


I always thought that the acronym for cop is 'constable on patrol'.
posted by kelrae3 at 2:42 PM on July 30, 2003


Citizens on Patrol.
posted by chrisege at 3:02 PM on July 30, 2003


Isn't 'cop' an acronym for 'citizen on patrol'?

No! By god, let's get this nipped in the bud right now. And "posh" is not short for "port out, starboard home," nor is "fuck" short for "for unlawful carnal intercourse." The creation of words from acronyms is a fad dating back not much farther than WWII (radar, fubar, &c). I know acronym etymologies are deeply appealing to people, but try to resist—they're almost all wrong. If you want to know about a given word, check with a reputable dictionary (Merriam-Webster, American Heritage, OED); if it says "etymology obscure" or "origin unknown" or the like, you can forget that clever story you saw on the internet.

'Cop' is short for 'copper'. Copper comes from 'cop'. Well done there.

Very funny, but those are two different cops. Cop 'policeman' is short for copper; the latter is from cop 'steal' (which is probably a variant of cap 'catch,' from French caper, blah blah blah).

Now that we've settled that: kids, if you're being chased by the cops, it's not a good idea to brandish a cell phone.
posted by languagehat at 3:43 PM on July 30, 2003


nor is "fuck" short for "for unlawful carnal intercourse."

Indeed. But "fuci" is.
posted by kindall at 3:46 PM on July 30, 2003


D'oh! Er, make that "knowledge." (Fuci this shii.)
posted by languagehat at 4:00 PM on July 30, 2003


Jeez... speaking of baiting! As if the guy's color has anything to do with it. Way to make an issue out of this, except to enflame racial passions.

I wouldn't be so sure - this is only one of the most recent studies on the topic. Apparently race may be quite an important factor in who gets shot, and when.
posted by tristeza at 4:02 PM on July 30, 2003


What I don't get (and I may be just plain stupid when it comes to using a gun--I don't own one and I fired one once over ten years ago), if you're trained to use a gun, can't you shoot someone once or twice and get your point across without having to shoot 8-15 times? In other words, can't one effectively aimed shot kill someone or better yet disable them, causing them to drop a weapon, etc? 8 shots just sounds a little overboard. I'll welcome being corrected if I've misunderstood something.
posted by josephtate at 4:41 PM on July 30, 2003


Acute gun injuries are not as predictable as all that. There is only a very small area in the head behind the sinuses, followed down the area of the spine, with a slight bulge around the heart, that is called the "one-shot-kill" zone.
This is not to say you *might* die or be incapacitated immediately from a shot outside this zone, but it is far less likely.

Whereas lethal gunshots are common, it often takes minutes or hours for the individual to die, or even be severely incapacitated, even with a major organ very damaged. (Many gunfights end up with two combatants, both with multiple gunshot wounds. Sometimes both dead.)

There are all sorts of provisos to this, though. A low velocity ordinary lead or hardened steel round (standard police handgun, for people and engine blocks, respectively) is far less destructive then a hollow-point tip or magnum round.

Range is also a factor. A short range shot could pass right through with minimal damage, or could ricochet inside the body, causing extensive damage (I knew a man who had that happen to him-the surgery was like open heart x 3.)
A farther range shot might have more initial "hitting" power, like being punched very hard, and it is far more likely that the bullet will stop inside, but with less internal damage.

The bottom line for police officers is not "fire twice then look", which is what most civilians assume is the case, but "empty your cylinder or magazine into the individual."

The intent is NOT to incapacitate, unless it is very obvious you have done so, and can stop firing. The intent, as testified to, is "I continued to fire until I believed he no longer presented the threat to use lethal force against me."
posted by kablam at 7:08 PM on July 30, 2003


I have been shot at and shot back. I used to work security detail for a housing project on the south side of Chicago. It's not easy at all when trying to hit someone. The assailant was 50 feet away and missed me with three shots. I missed him with the same but scared the crap out of him and he ran away only to be apprehended by the police seconds later. The thing I will always remember is how fast it all happened and I knew we were looking for someone who was armed.

If you watch the video and know at precisely what time the shooting occurs, even then it all seems to happen so fast. It really does and I cannot fault the officers.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 9:52 PM on July 30, 2003


I wouldn't be so sure - this is only one of the most recent studies on the topic. Apparently race may be quite an important factor in who gets shot, and when.

I wouldn't be so sure - this is only one of the most recent studies on the topic. Apparently race may be quite an important factor in who gets shot, and when.

I wouldn't be so sure - this is only one of the most recent studies on the topic. Apparently race may be quite an important factor in who gets shot, and when.

I wouldn't be so sure - this is only one o f the most recent studies on the topic. Apparently race may be quite an important factor in who gets shot, and when.
We
posted by Slimemonster at 10:16 PM on July 30, 2003


(I have NO idea where that "We" came from at the end of the post....)of
posted by Slimemonster at 10:22 PM on July 30, 2003


josephtate spake: In other words, can't one effectively aimed shot kill someone or better yet disable them, causing them to drop a weapon, etc? 8 shots just sounds a little overboard.

There's a huge difference between, say, a SWAT-type sniper placing "one effectively-aimed shot" (using a scoped rifle, far from the "action," and firing on his own timeline) and a street officer firing "one effectively-aimed shot" (using a sidearm, right in the middle of the "action," and firing in what he believes is the defense of his, or others', lives).

There's also the well-documented "Tueller Drill" that is taught in just about every law enforcement weapons academy in the United States. To briefly summarize, even someone who has been shot can close a 21-foot distance in about 1.5 seconds. If that person is armed, as was believed here, that could have resulted in the deaths of several officers, or, potentially, anyone unlucky enough to have been inside the market it appeared he was heading for. What is taught, therefore, is to keep firing until your clip is empty, or he is no longer moving (i.e., you disrupt so many bones, muscles, and/or organ systems that he isn't physically able to continue to move).

As to "shooting the gun/knife" out of someone's hand -- I challenge anyone who believes this is possible to go out to a "wilderness" somewhere, run flat-out for as long as you can, until you're exhausted (to simulate the shaky "adrenaline rush" of a real armed encounter), and then try to hit a three-square-inch target from a range of 21 feet. At dusk, too, so the lighting's not so great (as was the case for these officers). See how long it takes you to hit it just once. If it's longer than 1.5 seconds, you would likely end up dead if it was "for real."
posted by wdpeck at 11:24 PM on July 30, 2003


Oh, and by the way,

jpoulos spake: I'd rather see a cop get killed than an innocent man. It's their job, after all, to be in harm's way in place of the average citizen.

I'm sure you meant that in the "nicest," most metaphysical way. However, as someone who straps on a gun and Kevlar every day to "put myself in harm's way" for you, that's a hell of an offensive comment. I'd rather nobody got killed -- even those who make very bad, criminal choices. I'd rather this guy had used his frigging head, thus avoiding his death, as well as the wailing and gnashing of teeth over whether he was killed because he was black and stupid, or just stupid.

This person (Hudspeth) was certainly not "innocent." He had assaulted his wife not long before this incident; in fact, she'd just kicked him out for his adultery. He was DUI. He endangered dozens of lives by precipitating a high-speed pursuit through a busy city. He failed to obey the lawful commands of a peace officer. He fought with at least one officer after exiting his car (as can be seen on at least one of the linked tapes). He chose the path of the events that led to his death. It has even been suggested that he was attempting "suicide by police" as a way of escaping his personal problems.

But two cops shooting him point blank in the back as he's walking away doesn't seem like proper protocol in such a situation.

If I believe someone has pointed a gun at me, and then refuses to obey my commands, fights with me, and walks toward an occupied building, you better believe he or she will wind up "incapacitated."

This isn't a clear case of excessive force, but I think any time an unarmed person is killed by cops, there should be a thorough investigation.

There was an investigation, in which the officers were cleared of any wrongdoing or official misconduct. The the professional victims flew into town, and the witch hunt began. It's anybody's fault but the guy who was the criminal. It's not just cops shooting a scumbag they think pointed a gun at them, and who's now heading toward an occupied business; it's a racist conspiracy, from the chief to the newest rookie, to kill black people.
posted by wdpeck at 12:09 AM on July 31, 2003


Eight shots in nine seconds. That's some purty damn fine shootin', given the circumstances!
posted by mischief at 5:31 AM on July 31, 2003


Hmm? I'm not sure what you're trying to say mischief, but 8 shots in 9 seconds is no big deal. How many times can you "pull the trigger in 9 seconds. Even if it was an 8-shot revolver you could do it. Anyway, there were a total of 15 shots fired by more than one officer (also reasonable for 9 seconds especially coming from more than one gun).
posted by Witty at 5:42 AM on July 31, 2003


'Cop' is short for 'copper'. Copper comes from 'cop'.

Languagehat's explanation is a popular one, the idea being that the police used to have shiny copper buttons on their uniforms, thus were called coppers, then shortened to 'cop'. Personally, I think it's the other way 'round -- to 'cop' means to catch or get a hold of, so policemen are cop-pers in that they catch or get a hold of criminals. Everybody's pretty certain on the epystemology of 'bobbies', though, being derived from the name of Sir Robert Peel, who established the London police force. They were called both 'Peelers' and 'Bobbies men', bobbies is what took hold.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:43 AM on July 31, 2003


If I were a black man in the South and white police officers were chasing me, I would also strongly consider running.

And we now see why.


Ahh, I was curious to see how long it would take for someone to bring up that old stereo type.

Of course, you said we see 'why' without giving us the why. The officers did see black, a black gun (so they thought) pointed at them.

Its understandable to bring up generalizations when it comes to the south, considering its past history.

However, claiming white cop's picking on black suspects is a southern problem today is amazingly short sighted.

You would think the Rodney King case would break that generalization. New York has also had several cases regarding racist cops.

This is something everyone can share in, not just the south. Good try though ;)
posted by justgary at 12:31 PM on July 31, 2003


I see. So because there are racist cops up north and out west, that means that racism had nothing to do with this shooting. That makes perfect sense. Good try though. ;)
posted by jpoulos at 1:10 PM on July 31, 2003


I see. So because there are racist cops up north and out west, that means that racism had nothing to do with this shooting. That makes perfect sense.

Why was the shooting racist? I'm listening. I don't believe it was, but I'm open minded enough to hear another side to the video. So far, I haven't, and looking at this thread, most others feel the same.

Regardless, you misread my post, or maybe I wasn't clear enough. My point was that racist cops and shooting controversies are not indigenous to the south, as nofundy seemed to indicate.

In other words, if you think its a racist shooting, fine, but its a racist shooting that happened in the south, not because it was in the south.
posted by justgary at 10:13 PM on July 31, 2003


I'd rather see a cop get killed than an innocent man. It's their job, after all, to be in harm's way in place of the average citizen. Just as I'd rather see a soldier die than a civilian.

And I'd rather see a criminal get shot than a cop. Yes, it is their job to put themselves in harms way, but still they have the same rights of self preservation as the rest of us.

Besides, cops are not their to judge innocence or guilt, but to preserve order (ideally, anyway). It may be just "his job" but it's not a job any of us are lining up to do. I've said it before in similar situations: it's real easy to make judgements from the couch.
posted by jonmc at 12:14 PM on August 1, 2003


Civil_Disobedient: Try reading what I said:

Cop 'policeman' is short for copper; the latter is from cop 'steal'

Do you see anything about "shiny copper buttons"? If you've read any of my comments about language, you should know I don't go in for "popular" explanations.
posted by languagehat at 8:47 AM on August 2, 2003


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