UPDATE 12/2/15–Turns out the Caldwell PD policy is identical to Boise and other national police agencies…don’t shoot at a moving vehicle. No better situation at a family fight than to have one of the combatants leave. See IDAHO PRESS TRIBUNE.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel Tuesday asked for the resignation of police commissioner Garry McCarthy in the wake of the arrest of officer Jason Van Dyke charged with the murder of a black teen.
People across the USA were aghast when the video of the shooting was released last week, showing the youth being shot 16 times. The video was suppressed for nearly a year.
Meanwhile, in Idaho the shooting death of rancher Jack Yantis has taken a new twist with a story by STATESMAN reporter Katy Moeller. She revealed that one of the shooters of Yantis, Adams County Deputy Brian Wood, had a previous altercation with an 80-year-old man he had stopped for going 35 in a 25 mph zone four years ago.
In the video of that 2011 incident Wood, a McCall copper at the time, scuffles with the old man and eventually jails him. The man filed a federal civil rights law suit and the city of McCall settled out of court for an unknown sum.
While the October Adams County shooting death has garnered major local and national coverage, a Caldwell man was shot Sunday by an officer who claimed the suspect “tried to run him over,” with a vehicle. The copper opened fire, hitting the driver who eventually crashed into yet another police cruiser.
Such action is not far off from “road rage.” Could a motorist, bicyclist, or pedestrian claim “self defense,” when a driver cuts him off or even rams him? Imagine trying to sell a jury on, “He nearly hit me on my bike. I was in fear of my life so I had to shoot him.”
While not binding on other departments, the following Boise PD policy of NOT shooting at a moving vehicle is common policy with departments from Los Angeles to New York.
1.4 Use of Firearms at a Moving Vehicle
An officer shall not discharge a firearm at a vehicle or its occupants in response to a threat posed solely by the vehicle, unless both of the following circumstances exist:
–The officer has a reasonable belief that the suspect poses a continuing threat of death or serious bodily injury to officer(s) or others; and
–The officer has no reasonable alternative course of action
There is hope however. The GUARDIAN has obtained a lengthy “use of force” report from a national police executive think tank. If coppers across the nation had the training these top coppers espouse, fewer lives would be lost…citizen or cop.
New York reduced shootings by 90% when they made it a policy to NOT shoot at moving vehicles. Before Boise implemented the policy coppers peppered a Garden City neighborhood with bullets and ended up paying for everything from dishwashers to garage doors as a result.
The seminar ideas expressed in the report include things like recognizing that a guy with a knife can cut you before you can get your gun out if he is within 20 feet. Their solution? Stay more than 20 feet away.
The report is 84 pages long, but full of enlightening ideas.USE OF FORCE
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