Inevitable Result of the War On Cops: An Innocent Life Lost

Congratulations to all the anti-cop protesters out there, this woman’s death is the direct result of your actions!

First, before I go any further, I feel horrible for the family and friends of Elizabeth Tollison, the innocent woman who was killed.  I offer my sincere condolences for your loss. My comments that will follow are not remotely meant to belittle her loss, but rather to address what caused it.

Elizabeth Tollison died because, thanks to all the violent anti-cop protests across the nation over the last 4+ years, cops are now afraid to do their jobs. Had this incident occurred 6 years ago, that suspect never would have gotten close enough to that poor old lady to injure her, let alone have her become a hostage. Those cops would have dropped him before he could get that close, and rightfully so, because when you don’t, this is exactly what happens.

Here we have a “brown skinned” man, clearly armed, with a violent history, on parole, who cops were called on because he was violent and attacked his girlfriend, and several white cops who, arguably rightfully so, don’t want to shoot him lest they become the next face of the rallying cry against law enforcement. After all, “he only had a knife…”

We have been saying this was going to happen.

We have watched proactive cop work practically cease.

This is just another example of the Ferguson Effect.

Congratulations Black Lives Matter! Congratulations Barack Obama! This innocent woman’s death is the direct result of your actions.
-Matt

Deputy Killed After Putting Himself Between AK Toting Felon and Fellow Officers

Bob

In my position here with this blog and with my Facebook page, I sometimes become privy to official information before it is released via official routes.  That is exactly what has happened in the case of the murder of Sacramento Sheriff’s Deputy Bob French.  The original, official versions of the incident in which Bob was killed left a lot to be desired.  There were inconsistencies and blatantly erroneous information in the official versions, leaving those with intimate knowledge of the case extremely frustrated.  To many folks who knew the full story, it felt as if the department was hiding the truth.

Come to find out, there were a couple of completely erroneous rumors floating around the department regarding the incident and management was trying to get all their ducks in a row, evidence wise, so that they could dispel all of those rumors at the same time that they released the full story about how heroically Bob acted that day, and heroic he was.

What follows is a Readers Digest version of what transpired that day.  Not having access to the actual evidence, what follows is what I have been told by a number of sources who have had direct access to the evidence, and directly from those who were at the scene.  There may be some minor discrepancies, but the overall picture should be accurate.


Detectives were going to contact the hotel room related to an earlier stolen vehicle.  The room was supposed to be unoccupied, with only some physical evidence inside to be recovered.  Deputy Bob French was one of the deputies on that call.  Bob was in his car and was positioned two businesses to the east.  He was the only cop in a car at the time, and was in position in case one of the stolen vehicle suspects who might possibly be at the hotel, made it to a car and fled.

As detectives attempted to enter the supposedly empty hotel room, the suspect inside, a man who would have been in prison were it not for AB-109, opened fire with a handgun through the hotel room door and walls, striking two CHP officers, injuring one seriously and the other not quite as bad.  The injured CHP officers and one other Sacramento Deputy fled to the stairwell and began to head to the parking lot to be evacuated to the hospital for medical treatment.  All of this was broadcast via the radio, and additional resources began heading to the scene, including Bob.

At that time, the suspect in the room, who was now armed with a folding stock AK (which is not a “high powered” rifle as has been reported to the media), started to flee out the back of the room onto the balcony.  One solo Sacramento County deputy was on the back side of the hotel at that time, and due to the ongoing investigation, his name is being withheld.  That deputy, who was armed only with his handgun, engaged the suspect in a firefight that lasted more than 60 seconds.  The deputy was miraculously not hit, but everything around him was shredded by the incoming rounds fired by the suspect.  The suspect, realizing the deputy was not going to disengage, managed to get to the ground and fled east, the same direction the other deputy went as he evacuated the two wounded CHP officers.

Let me just say this right here, that unnamed deputy who was by himself on the rear of the hotel, that man is a big damn hero!

While that firefight was occurring, Bob had driven his car from the location down the street to the front of the hotel.  As he parked, the deputy and two wounded CHP officers exited the building and ran toward Bob.  As they reached Bob’s car, one of the wounded officers started to get into the rear seat of his car.  Bob told them to head to the evacuating deputy’s car which was a few feet away so that Bob could watch their backs.

As they ran from Bob’s car to the other car a few feet away, the suspect emerged from the same location from whence the injured cops had just come.  As he exited, he saw the cops and immediately engaged them with his AK.  Bob stepped forward and returned the favor with his AR, causing the suspect to slow and redirect his fire, at Bob.  Bob continued engaging the suspect in a firefight for a short while, as Bob used the rear corner of his patrol vehicle as cover.  During this time, the deputy who evacuated the wounded CHP officers sped off to the hospital with the more serious of the wounded cops.

Other units arrived and also engaged the suspect.  One of these responding units was positioned behind Bob and perfectly captured the ensuing firefight on the in-car camera system.

During the gun battle, one of the suspect’s rounds hit the window of Bob’s car and ricocheted, sending a large fragment of the bullet into Bob’s shoulder, between the top edges of the vest panels.  That bullet fragment somehow missed all of the bones and went directly to Bob’s heart, entering his left ventricle.  I have been told that even if a trauma surgeon was on scene and started working on Bob at this point, Bob would not have made it.

That fact did not stop Bob though.  He shook it off, likely not realizing how badly he was injured, and reengaged the suspect who was just getting into a car at this time.  As the suspect fled through the parking lot, he continued firing his weapon at the cops, and the cops present, including Bob, did the same in return.  (The suspect later died from the wounds he received during this gun battle.)

Once the suspect left the parking lot, Bob walked back up to the front of his car.  It is at this point that it appears, at least from the video, that Bob realizes he is seriously injured.  Bob, being the calm, seasoned cop that he was, dropped the magazine out of his rifle, cleared the chamber and returned the rifle to the gun lock in his car.  He sat down, then fell to the pavement.

At this time, one of the deputies on scene ran to him.  In typical, calm Bob fashion, with his chew still in his cheek, Bob provided a suspect and suspect vehicle description.  As he laid on the ground waiting for medical help to arrive, again in typical Bob fashion, he told one of the cops there with him “hurry up and move me, the Goddam asphalt is hot.”

I’m told Bob was talking up to the end, and only spit his chew out once he was in the ambulance.  Bob, being the tough bastard he was, lived for 10 minutes after receiving a non-survivable wound.

Between Bob and the unnamed deputy on the back side of the hotel, those two men almost assuredly saved the lives of the two CHP wounded officers and the deputy who was evacuating them.  Bob died a huge hero.  Bob’s story deserves to be told.   His heroism must be known.

Bob, thank you for your service and your sacrifice.  We have the watch from here.  Rest in peace brother.


 

* This recounting of the events is in no way meant to downplay the actions of any of the involved officers. From what I have been told, there were a number of heroic actions performed that day, by a number of different people, up to and including the firefighters who tirelessly tried to save Bob.  I’ve been told that the professionalism displayed at this incident, especially considering the circumstances, was awe inspiring.

 

Copyright (c) 2017 Deputy Matt and Others Who Serve, all rights reserved.

Officer Noor OIS: Important Missing Info

In case you have been living under a rock for the last several days, there was an officer involved shooting in Minneapolis, MN over the weekend.  Late Saturday night, around 11:30pm, officers responded to a 911 call about a disturbance in an alley.  At some point in time, after officers arrived, the 911 caller, Justine Damond, approached the patrol car on the diver side and was shot by the officer who was seated in the passenger seat.

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The above information is the super simplified version of what happened.  If you read many of the news reports about this incident, you might find all sorts of other information either added, or conspicuously lacking.  Sadly, as in the cases of most officer involved shootings, the information that is obviously lacking is causing many folks to try and fill that void, mostly with rumor and innuendo.  I myself am guilty of that on occasion, and have done so to a minor extent in this one.

Luckily, the fact that I am a working cop, and a street cop at that (as opposed to an administrator) lends me some credibility with other cops, at least those who know my reputation.  In this case, that lead to a cop familiar with this incident reaching out to try and fill some of the voids as best they could, without releasing information that could hinder any sort of investigation.  To be perfectly honest, what this cop told me is exactly what the police department should be releasing, but for whatever bizarre reason, they are being very tight lipped with all the information surrounding this incident.

Please take everything that follows with a grain of salt, as some of this information is from word of mouth and not direct knowledge, and other parts are intentionally vague to avoid causing problems for the person I spoke to.


First of all, most news reports are saying the 911 call was about a possible sexual assault, but from what I was told, it was dispatched more as a disturbance in the alley, with no specific location indicated in the call.

Second, and very importantly as most of the mainstream media is throwing a huge fit over the fact that their body cameras were not on at the time of the shooting, the officers had already checked the area and were not able to locate the source of the disturbance, so they drove to a dark area to clear the call, and while doing so, turned off their cameras.  That bit is also quite important as the media is throwing a fit over it.  Despite what the media is saying, turning the cameras off as they clear the call is totally within the department policy (or so I was told).

Despite what is being reported by many outlets, the officer only fired one shot.  While I think we will all agree, one shot was one too many, it is significantly different from what I read at various outlets that suggested multiple shots were fired.  While this may seem trivial to some people, one shot can be explained as a negligent discharge, where multiple shots cannot.  This is in fact quite important.  A negligent discharge does not make the shooting excusable, but it does make more sense than the officer just randomly shooting a caller for no apparent reason, which many of the news reports about this incident make it sound like.

Many news outlets are saying that the victim, Justine Damond, was standing at the patrol car driver’s door speaking to the officer driving when the passenger officer “drew his weapon and shot her through the door,” I was told this was not in fact the case.  There are several problems with that statement.  First, I was told she was not actually standing there talking to them, but rather that she was jogging/running toward their car.  Second, Officer Noor did not in fact draw his gun from the holster because he already had it out.  Apparently, as they checked the alley, they had their handguns unholstered and Noor had not yet reholstered his gun.  Third, Noor did not “shoot through the door,” at least not in the way that that statement makes most people picture the incident.  According to the person I spoke to, there were no holes in the door, so it is likely the shot went through the window, whether or not the window was down at the time is unknown.

In regards to Officer Noor himself, many outlets have (correctly) pointed out that he is a Somali immigrant.  However, many of those outlets seem to be insinuating that this incident may have been racially/religiously motivated.  The person I spoke to has had numerous first-hand dealings with Officer Noor and said there was never any indication that this could be a racial or religiously motivated incident.

Several people have posted comments in various locations, my Facebook page being one of them, indicating that Officer Noor was a problematic patrol trainee.  Some people said that his training had been extended, some saying extended more than once, because he was far below acceptable levels, and that he was being treated special because of political correctness reasons (he fit several hiring check boxes).  The person I spoke to said, to the best of their knowledge, none of that was true.  They said they even asked around to other people who are in the know regarding Officer Noor, and those other folks had also heard the same rumors, but they too said the rumors were inaccurate.  The consensus was that Noor was neither a problem trainee, nor was he ultra-stellar.  He was just an ordinary, mostly average trainee.

Noor was described to me as an “okay new cop, still pretty green.”  Some coworkers were put off by what was described as a slightly cocky attitude, but that attitude is not specific to Noor.  In fact, most young cops, especially those from his generation, seem to share that trait.  As for his greenness, it is also not specific to him.  Most senior cops, myself included, will tell you that the first two years you are in patrol on your own, you are a mess.  It takes most of us at least two years before we really know what we are doing, and Noor was not there yet.


I asked some questions I had specific to how the department there functions.  First, I wanted to know if all of the patrol cars were two-officer units or if the fact that two cops were in the car was unusual.  I was told that nearly all, if not all, of the patrol units fielded were two-officer cars.  The second question I had, which I asked based on personal observation at my own department, was if they were allowing two new cops to double up, or if they were putting new cops with seasoned officers.  I was told that there was no directive on that, and that most new cops tended to double up with other new cops.  In this particular incident, both Noor and his partner were fairly new to the job.

Now, as for specifics about the shooting and the ongoing investigation, I wish I had more information, but I do not.  We are just going to have to wait and see what comes from the investigation.

No matter what happens with the investigation, a truly innocent woman died needlessly.  That in and of itself is horrific.  Nothing that happens from this point on will bring her back, and nothing the city, the department, or Officer Noor does will make her loss any less tragic.  For her family and her friends, I offer my sincerest condolences.
-Matt

America’s Rosetta Stone


I read through the news today after a recent terrorist attack upon Police Officers in Dallas. Men and women serving their country and communities were attacked because of the clothes they wore and the color of their skin. Alternatively it is reported almost everywhere these attacks were in response to “two innocent black men being gunned down by police” yet the facts are not yet fully known. To respond violently based upon initial emotion is to discredit the American process and disregards civility entirely.

When historians look back upon the last several years what will our defining moments be? I often consider this point of view because as a student of history I realize the human condition is cyclical. Consider our greatest accomplishments and triumphs where Americans had a common goal, pulled together and achieved wondrous results. These American achievements need not be stated they are so powerful.

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I use the Rosetta Stone as my example of ancient human achievement. The rock was found in 1799 by French soldiers and now resides in the British Museum. Written upon the enormous rock is a series of accomplishments and instructions for Egyptian priests. It is written in two languages and three scripts. It is amazing to me how multiple cultures collided in an era of little technology to create something this long lasting. (You can read more about this fascinating topic at: http://www.ancientegypt.co.uk/writing/rosetta.html)

What do the words of the Rosetta stone say? What do they mean? We live in a culture now where it doesn’t matter. Facts are considered  boring while violent emotions are considered exciting and relevant. Idols fuel emotionalism as a movement and as role models to America’s youth. A popular musician of our time, Jay Z has released a new song which he addresses the problem. Here is an example of one lyric: “Got my hands in the air in despair/don’t shoot/I just wanna do good.”Young-Thug-JAY-Z

Perhaps the music is moving, maybe the lyrics are meaningful but they are not responsible. The words themselves are perpetuated by lies and drive further emotion instead of logic. That emotion is endorsed by powerful leaders of the state and the message becomes misconstrued. Violence is the result and ignorance is the tool.

Music, Television and Movies are not seen as entertainment in our time, they are words and actions to live by. Fantasy is our hero and I still wonder what America’s common goal is. We are divided on all things in regards to morality and justice and I cannot fathom what stamp of human achievement our generation has left upon history. If our Rosetta Stone is chaos, lawlessness and anarchy I wish to distance myself from it as far as possible.

I have children though, so I cannot wallow in despair and would like to leave them something to cling to. We spend so much time trying to convince the emotionally misguided that our own children often become neglected from the truth. More and more I disconnect myself from popular media, social media and even news networks. I teach my children how to think for themselves and encourage them to try and leave the Sandcastle-2world a better place when they leave it. More than anything I tell them to suppress emotion and use logic to respond. This is how we build a lasting monument to our prosperity as a nation. A nation not divided but as one people and as unified Americans.

A monument to our civilization needs not be represented by division and destruction. Through our common children we must build something greater than we have now. Utilizing morality and logic we must build a culture which welcomes all as Americans and respects the tenements of our rich history. A foundation which shrugs off its mistakes and moves swiftly and accurately to correct them. A foundation which withstands the decaying sands of time and utilizes a profound goal as opposed to destruction with no purpose.

Why The Evidence Is Vitally Important

A buddy just sent me the link to this video.  I had not heard about this incident prior to him sending me the link.  I have no idea if there are any issues (social media uproar or bad shoot complaints) arising from this, but it is an excellent video to look at.

Caution, it is a somewhat graphic video of an officer involved shooting.  It is not bloody or gory, but it does show the shooting.

Two important things we can take away from this, and a third somewhat less important:

  1.  Watching this on my phone vs the computer, it was impossible to see the an object in the guy’s right hand.  It looks like a large knife to me, but I’ve been told it was a hammer.  Even on the computer, it was not clearly visible until half way through the video as he had it concealed under the many layers of clothing/blankets he had draped over himself.
  2. Despite what uneducated anti-gunners and nearly all politicians seems to believe, thanks mainly to Hollywood, shooting someone does not necessarily stop them, especially when using a handgun, and especially not with one round.  This guy takes the first three rounds (unknown how many actually hit him) like a stud and shows no signs of slowing down.  The second volley of three rounds appears to hit his CNS and drops him, stopping him.
  3. For the love of God people, please learn how to hold your phone when recording video!!!  Horizontal, not vertical!  I’m sort of joking, but also also partly serious.  It makes a difference in how large the video plays, which is important when viewing the video for evidence.

This is an excellent video that demonstrates just how vitally important it is to wait and examine the evidence before anyone jumps to conclusions.  It would be very easy for a witness to this situation to say something along the lines of “the cops shot an unarmed guy 6 times for no reason” but when looking at the evidence, that is clearly not the case.  This was a clean shoot.  The suspect is armed with a large knife and he is clearly charging the officer with the gun when he is shot, both times.
-Matt

The Helicopter FTO?

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Some of the reader comments, both here and on our Facebook page, regarding the recent officer involved shooting in Arlington, TX have tried to place an undue amount of blame on the Field Training Officer (FTO), Cpl. Wiggins, who was training Officer Miller.  I don’t know how long the training program is for Arlington PD, or when Officer Miller started it, but all accounts say that Officer Miller had been hired in September 2014 and was nearing the end of his field training.

I was an FTO for a number of years, and I still fill in that role from time to time when FTO’s take time off and their trainees need someone to ride with, so I do have a little personal knowledge on the subject matter.

Here are a few things to consider when we are talking about this subject.  By the time a trainee reaches field training, they have met certain requirements.

  1. They are over the age of 18 (21 in some states) and are legally an adult
  2. They have completed a full police academy and are, legally speaking, a full peace officer
  3. They have passed the background check and are presumably not a convicted criminal
  4. They have passed a psychological exam and are presumably not a psychotic nut job
  5. They found the station, their locker, the briefing room and their FTO, so they can apparently follow simple instructions

Considering all of the above, it is reasonable to assume that a person in training, even a fresh trainee right out of the academy, can follow simple directions.  As trainees continue through the program, and especially as they near the end of their training, it becomes reasonable to assume that they can handle more complex tasks without immediate supervision.  To remotely suggest that an FTO has to keep their trainee under constant supervision, and is responsible for their every action, is insane.

Here are some examples of common tasks given to trainees on a daily basis, which are often times completed without any supervision whatsoever.

  • “Go over there and take that person’s statement.”
  • “Go stuff this bad guy in the back seat.”
  • “Book this evidence.”
  • “Snatch that guy up and cuff him.”
  • “Fill out the booking paperwork for the arrest.”
  • “Go over to that side of the building and establish a perimeter spot.”

Some of the comments, some even made my people purporting to be field training officers (FTO) themselves, saying that the FTO was at fault because he allowed his trainee to leave his side, or that he screwed up because he was not constantly monitoring his trainee, made me remember a term about parents that don’t give their kids any room to make mistakes, to learn on their own:  Helicopter Parents

Their comments make me want to coin a new term: the Helicopter FTO

I thank God that I did not have any Helicopter FTOs as I went through the training program, although to be honest, I can think of a few I have known over the years.  Not surprisingly, they were the FTO the trainees did not want to get.  Trainees cannot learn when they are under constant, microscopic supervision.  No one can.  That is not how adults learn, and a patrol trainee is an adult.

So, unless the FTO gave the trainee bad instructions, such as “go over to that open door, enter by yourself and go snatch dude up,” or unless he sat there watching his trainee going into the building solo, and decided to watch and see how it would play out (which we know by the account of the incident, that is not remotely what happened since he ran to catch up and was there with his Taser out when the shooting occurred), then the FTO is not responsible for the actions of the trainee.

Please don’t take this as me bashing Officer Miller.  That is not my intent, not remotely.  Trainees make mistakes, hell, FTO’s make mistakes.  We all do.  That is part of being human.  But, to try and assign blame to the FTO for a series of mistakes his trainee made in a matter of a minutes, if not seconds, is the same thing as say, blaming a cop for shooting a bad guy who is beating him to near unconsciousness and trying to take his gun.  It is blame shifting, and it has absolutely no place in society, let alone in law enforcement.


On a related side note, during my time as an FTO, I had a number of trainees who seemed to have the ability to magically disappear at a moments notice.  I know many other FTOs have encountered the same thing, because a number of us have jokingly discussed putting a cow bell on our trainees so that we could keep track of them.  So, in addition the the Helicopter FTO, we can have the Cowbell Trainee.  

My Educated Guess Was Wrong – Officer Miller Terminated

A couple days ago, I wrote an article in which I discussed the current state of the investigation taking place in Arlington, TX where a burglary suspect had been shot by the cops.  At the end of that article, I laid out what I clearly stated was my guess as to what might have occurred inside the dealership, out of the view of the surveillance video.

As much as I hate being wrong, I have to admit my educated guess was Entirely Incorrect.  What I surmised might have happened, was far from what actually occurred.

With that said, please take the time to watch this press conference given by Chief Will Johnson of the Arlington Police.  It is long, but it is absolutely worth the 28 minutes.  He discusses all the details that they can release at this point, and surprisingly they released quite a bit of information.  But he goes beyond that and describes how the case is examined on a number of levels, and he describes how both the reasonableness and legality of an officer involved shooting is measured.

For those of you reading this whom are not on the job; for those who enjoy analyzing and scrutinizing the actions of cops from the safety of your couch or desk, please pay special attention to Chief Johnson’s explanation of Graham v Connor (begins at 1:55 mark), which is the supreme court case that establishes the standard by which all deadly force uses by law enforcement are measured.  His explanation is outstanding!

The Facts That Were Revealed
During the press conference, Chief Johnson ran through the series of events.  I am going to summarize them here in bullet points, and am not including everything. Please watch the video for more details.

  • Officers were dispatched to a burglary in progress
  • A total of 6 officers in 5 cars were sent
  • Officers saw a single suspect inside the building
  • One officer verbally engaged suspect through a closed, locked glass door
  • Same officer noted a large bulge in the suspect’s pants pocket (others also saw it as noted later)
  • The suspect showed the initial contact officer keys to a car and said he was going to steal it
  • The officer ordered the suspect to get on the ground, but the suspect refused to comply
  • Corporal Wiggins (training officer) and Officer Miller (trainee) began to pass the officer who was speaking to the suspect
  • Wiggins stopped to talk to officer who was engaging the suspect, but Miller continued to the open/broken doors
  • Miller entered the building by himself, with his gun drawn
  • Miller verbally engaged the suspect who fled to the rear of business and tried to break through a glass door
  • Miller, still solo, chased the suspect to the back and verbally engaged him again
  • Suspect again refused to comply and began to charge Miller
  • Wiggins entered the building attempted to catch up to his trainee
  • Wiggins got to within approximately 4′ of Miller and Wiggins drew his Taser
  • As the suspect charged Miller, Miller fired one shot but the suspect continued advancing
  • Wiggins fired his Taser but the suspect continued advancing
  • Miller firesd three more shots
  • Shots fired broadcast on radio, emergency medical requested
  • At no point did the suspect physically engage any of the officers

Investigation Results Thus Far
Chief Johnson was clear to point out at the onset of his press conference that there are two investigations that are going on simultaneously in any officer involved shooting.  There is an administrative investigation and a criminal investigation.  This is true no matter the jurisdiction, and the results of the two investigations are independent of one another.

  • Administrative Investigation – Officer Miller screwed up, badly, a number of times.  His screw ups ultimately lead to the confrontation that occurred.  His mistakes were both officer safety in nature as well as tactical errors.  Not only did his mistakes put both he and the suspect in danger, but they put all the other officers in danger too.  Officer Miller has been fired (released from his probationary employment) as a result of those grievous errors.
  • Criminal Investigation – Still proceeding.  Results will be given to the District Attorney and will then be presented to the Grand Jury to determine if charges will be filed.  If I were a betting man, based on the facts that were revealed in this press conference, I would put money that this case will be going to trial.

Stupid Media Questions, and Outright Bias
As is the case at nearly every law enforcement press conference for a high profile incident, especially those involving officers using deadly force, there were a number of stupid questions.  However, beyond that, there was a couple that really display a bias by the media.  I’m going to summarize a few of those below (not verbatim, unless in quotes).

  •  21:38 mark –  Did the first shot fired strike the suspect?
    • How on earth would we know that?  Bullets aren’t numbered.  We have no way of identifying which slug was from which casing and in what order they were fired.
  • 24:28 mark – Did Officer Miller explain why he continued to shoot after the Taser was deployed?
    • Chief Johnson handled this much better than I would have.  Does this guy think that this was some long, drawn out thing?  From the first shot until the last shot was only seconds.
  • 23:52 mark – Did Corporal Wiggins ever try to question Officer Miller, or intervene and ask him what he was doing?
    • OMG, seriously?  Is this person for realsies?
    • Let me see, my trainee has disappeared on me, where did he go?  Holy crap!  There he is, he went inside by himself and is engaging the suspect.  (runs to catch up) Trainee has suspect, who is now charging him, at gunpoint and suspect if failing to follow all verbal commands.  This is where we call “TIME OUT” – okay trainee, why are you doing what you are doing?
    • The utter lack of a grasp on reality displayed by some reporters is sometimes quite amazing
  • 24:21 mark – BIAS ALERT – Do you think the outcome of this investigation would have have been different two years ago?
    • In other words, did this outcome only happen because of all the scrutiny law enforcement is under right now?
    • Chief:  “No sir, I do not”
    • Let us just say even if he did, which none of us who know what really happens in these investigations would ever think, but even if he did think that, does this reporter think he would say it would have been different?  This is a BS, gotcha question asked so that they can say the “Chief denies investigation would have had different outcome without public outcry.”
  • 25:30 mark – BIAS ALERT – Does Corporal Wiggins face and punishment for “allowing” his trainee to be separated from him?
    • Chief: “Absolutely not”
    • Follow up question: “Why did he allow him to go in there by himself?”
    • When I heard this question, I actually yelled at my computer screen.  What an arrogant ass. The Chief explains it politely, I won’t.

Because, mister “reporter,” here on planet earth, grown adults have not only free will, but we also have limited abilities.  As a training officer at an in progress crime scene, like this was, he is not only trying to do his job as a training officer, but he is also doing his job as a cop, which involves not only trying to keep track of the suspect and his trainee, but also all the other officers at the scene.  Additionally, as a mere mortal human being, I highly suspect he was unable to freaking read the mind of his trainee and know what the trainee was planning on doing…

He and his trainee were supposed to be moving to the open area to establish a perimeter position, in order to contain the suspect.  When he stopped to talk  with the other officer (I can only presume to discuss their plan of action) , the trainee continued.  The trainee upon reaching their perimeter position, screwed up and took it upon himself to enter the building, solo, which goes against all officer safety and tactical training he would have received to that point.  Apparently, the training officer’s superpowers were not working, and his assuming the trainee, who was nearing the end of his field training, would have followed basic protocols is the same thing as “allowing” him to do something.

Training officers and trainees are all only human.  Sometimes humans make mistakes.  This question, in the way it is worded, blatantly tries to assign blame on the training officer, and thus the department.  This “reporter” should be forced to attend force on force and shoot/no-shoot training before being allowed to attend another law enforcement press conference.

  • 27:11 mark – Have you spoke to the former officer in person, and how was that interaction?
    • Chief Johnson: “Difficult”
    • Followed by a long pause, after which he goes into a little more depth after politely shushing a reporter who was trying to interrupt.

Summary
Based on all the facts known at this point, this appears to be a bad shoot.  The officer involved has had his probationary employment terminated.  The criminal investigation is still ongoing.  Once that criminal investigation is complete, the case will be given to the District Attorney who will present it to the Grand Jury.  They will determine whether or not the case goes to criminal trial.  As I said already, I suspect it will.

Thus far, everything about this investigation is functioning Exactly As It Should, and just like it does in every case, with or without the media breathing down law enforcement’s neck.

It really sucks that this young man was killed, just as it would have sucked even if it were a justifiable shooting.  I wish the death of a child upon no parent.  No parent should have to outlive their child.

But, while the shooting is horribly regrettable, one must not dismiss the suspect’s role in his own demise.

Two people made very bad mistakes that early morning.  One of those people who made mistakes instigated the entire event, and made it worse by making yet more mistakes along the way.  The other person was a man working a very tough job, trying to make his community a safer place, who was put on the spot and forced to make a split second decision, and he made several mistakes as well.

The question that now remains is, did that second man’s mistakes rise to the level of a criminal offense?  I suspect we will have to wait to see what a jury says about that.

As for how the Arlington, TX Police Department is handling this investigation, I have nothing but respect for them.  They are quickly handling a very difficult investigation under the public microscope.  Additionally, the sincerity and emotion in both Chief Johnson’s words and body language in this press conference tell it all.  This is a man who not only cares about his department and the employees, but also cares about his community.  He appears to me to be a man of honor and integrity.  Chief Johnson appears to be a man I would be proud to work for.