Wouldn’t an ordinary citizen be in jail for this?

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

An off-duty cop was caught on video waving his gun around in a bar.

A Nassau County police officer has been suspended without pay and forced to surrender his weapons after pointing his gun at a worker inside a Farmingdale, N.Y. bar, according to a police statement.

I suppose another question might be whether he would even have been suspended had there not been any video.  Of course, his identity has not been released.  After all, it might turn out that he had a perfectly legitimate reason for his actions and was simply carrying out standard police procedures…

[Posted by Dave Krueger]

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35 Responses to “Wouldn’t an ordinary citizen be in jail for this?”

  1. #1 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    Odds backpay will be returned after the union review: 2 to 1.

  2. #2 |  freelancer | 

    Wouldn’t an ordinary citizen be in jail for this?

    Yes. Assault by Pointing.

  3. #3 |  Aresen | 

    Wouldn’t an ordinary citizen be in jail for this?

    Assuming the ordinary citizen weren’t in the morgue, yes.

    BTW: Who posted this?

  4. #4 |  Nipplemancer | 

    rules are for little people.

    Bylines also help. I’m gonna guess Dave since he forgot to do it earlier

  5. #5 |  Cleanville Tziabatz | 

    I call them regcits.

  6. #6 |  Michael Chaney | 

    Yep, as the other poster said, it’s assault and he should be criminally charged. One nice trick that law enforcement agencies do to protect their own is turn criminal conduct into an administrative issue that they can then sweep under the rug after a little paid time off.

  7. #7 |  Nate | 

    In Google reader it lists as Dave Kreuger, but when I click through the name is no longer there.

  8. #8 |  Dave Krueger | 

    #4 Nipplemancer

    Bylines also help. I’m gonna guess Dave since he forgot to do it earlier

    Sorry. I seem to have some kind of mental block regarding the byline.

  9. #9 |  EH | 

    A little mystery is always nice :)

  10. #10 |  Nipplemancer | 

    Don’t fret Dave. You’re doing great so far.

  11. #11 |  Bob | 

    Yeah, Dave. don’t forget the byline! You’ll need it later when you sue Radley for back pay. Heh.

  12. #12 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    Yes, an ordinary citizen in my state would have been arrested for aggravated assault with a weapon. Not sure what it’s called in NY State, but I’m sure it’s similar. There would be no excuses. If that citizen was still holding the weapon upon the arrival of law enforcement, he would have been shot, probably justifiably. These things are less complicated when you aren’t the police.

  13. #13 |  Dave Krueger | 

    By the way, rumor has it that the cop in this story spent the earlier part of his day answering calls, settling a few disputes, and doing paperwork, before returning home to watch TV and then hitting the local bars.

    Sorry. I just couldn’t resist that. I know, I have absolutely no manners and should be taken out and publicly flogged into a gelatinous glob of steaming shredded human flesh.

  14. #14 |  Dan | 

    I love all the guest blog posts. I think this should be a regular feature.

    Here in Seattle, in this case the perp after being shot and killed, would have been publicly flogged into a geLATINous glob of steaming shredded human flesh, shown on a leaked cell-phone video of the event punctuated by a verbal racial epithet.

  15. #15 |  Nipplemancer | 


  16. #16 |  Bill | 

    Let’s not forget that New York is one of the tougher places to get a permit to carry a concealed weapon, mundanes being so unpredictable and irresponsible with deadly weapons. Well, that, and they might shoot idiot cops brandishing their guns in bars.

  17. #17 |  Greg | 

    Just kinda depends where you are as much, if not more than, who you are.

    NY is a nice case to play with.

    In NYC, even Tronald Dump would have a whole lotta lawyer bills to pay were he caught waving an iron around in a bar.

    However, head for the boonies Upstate, and as long as you’re local, odds are the worst that happens is the local LEO will haul you out of the bar and give you a stern talking to. You might also get booted from said bar for a week. Or two.

    Thankfully, there’s still plenty of places in the midwest where kids carry firearms to school on the bus during deer/rabbit/whatever season – they are going over to friend’s house after school to go hunting. (Yes, they leave them in the office during the day. Yup, they have ammo too…) Not every school in the US has adopted a zero-tolerance policy toward pocket knives and fingernail clippers post-Columbine….

  18. #18 |  Whim | 

    Nah, you’ve got it all wrong. The police Internal Affairs unit reviewed the video, and determined that the policeman was merely holding his glass out in front of him, requesting a refill……..that’s not really a pistol he’s holding. Really……

  19. #19 |  Tim Vande | 

    I’ve been in a bar where a drunk cop wanted to fight. It is not a whole lot of fun because there isn’t much you can do.

  20. #20 |  Anthony | 

    My bullshit meter just went off.
    Care to give specifics as to where in the “midwest” kids take firearms and ammunition to school? on the bus no less. I grew up in small town Nebraska before 9/11 and that never happened.

  21. #21 |  Just Plain Brian | 

    No, an ordinary citizen would be dead. Don’t forget, a non-cop can’t even shop at Cosco while carrying a gun, much less waving a gun around, without being killed by police.

  22. #22 |  André | 

    Oh man, when I heard the first details leaking in about UBL being unarmed, I immediately thought to myself “he made a furtive gesture, so we shot him in self defense.” That was two days ago. We need to come up with a verb that means “to shoot an unarmed man in self-defense. I suggest “to diallo”.


    CIA Director Leon Panetta told “PBS NewsHour” that bin Laden “made some threatening moves” that “represented a clear threat to our guys” but was not more specific about what the unarmed terrorist did as the commandos engaged others at the compound and burst into his room.

    “UBL made a furtive gesture so the SEALS diallo’d him.”

  23. #23 |  demize! | 

    Author is practicing the art of the self answering question apparently.

  24. #24 |  ktc2 | 

    Gator attacks police vehicle: http://video.foxnews.com/v/4676258/gator-chomps-on-police-cruiser

    Go Gator!

  25. #25 |  Yizmo Gizmo | 

    I heard somewhere the officer in question tried the “Aw, shucks, I was only foolin'” defense.

  26. #26 |  Mario | 

    Greg @ #17

    Here in Newburgh, NY, the old-timers (around age 60 or so) remember that they used to come to school with their dog and their shotgun. They’d tie the dog up in the yard and put the gun in their locker. When school was over, they’d grab the gun and dog, and go hunting until they had to come home for dinner.

  27. #27 |  Deoxy | 

    Wouldn’t an ordinary citizen be in jail for this?

    That applies to a LOT of stuff. Crap like this happens all the time – cops are more specialer than the rest of us – even when they’re off duty, they still go by “cop” rules, not “citizen” rules.

  28. #28 |  Pablo | 

    I went to high school in Alabama in the early 80’s. Most of us guys carried a pocket knife and some had Buck folders on their belts. Lots of us had a .22 or shotgun or 30-30 in the trunk or behind the pickup seat, esp. during hunting season. It was no big deal and somehow no one shot up the place.

  29. #29 |  Pablo | 

    Sounds like a DUI case as well as aggravated assault.

  30. #30 |  Mike | 

    “Wouldn’t an ordinary citizen be in jail for this?”

    Yes, and so would this officer if the employee pressed charges. It was reported locally that the employee declined to do so. Lacking a complainant, there is no “criminal” case. FYI, its only a misdemeanor menacing. he should get the boot, though.

  31. #31 |  Dave Krueger | 

    There is a little more information about this story here.

    Though the officer could not be reached for an interview, his neighbors were contacted to speak about the incident. They claim that the officer is a good man who made the common mistake of drinking too much on a particular evening.

    And then there’s this:

    Some followers of the case aren’t as understanding and have a less lenient take on what should have been done to the officer. They claim that if a civilian had committed the same offense, the consequences would most likely ensure automatic jail time.

  32. #32 |  Pierre | 

    Regarding Gregs post…
    We did this in the early 90’s at my middle school in Wisconsin. Go to the office and check in your cased rifle for deer opener. You also got a half day if you were going hunting.

    However, I can guarantee you this no longer happens…

  33. #33 |  derfel cadarn | 

    This ASSHOLE should be FIRED !!! No excuse for stupidity being in a position in which he should know better,he should be given NO tolerance. It is high time that the police began obeying the same laws as you and me.

  34. #34 |  Greg | 


    I’m in my lower 40s and as the lower teen kids got off the bus yesterday with guns to hunt on my 50-miles-outside-of-STL property that I bought in my lower 20s there was no drama. I’m assuming it was kosher as there was no caravan of oinkers rolling code in pursuit of these unfathomably dangerous youths.

    Will I specify the R number? Nope, attention from outsiders is not welcome as they have no vested interest in what happens outside of their fantasy world of scared little people.

    No guns in your school pre 9/11? Hell, I (and tens of thousands) flew with a 4″ pocket knife several times a week before the pussies let the terrorists win…

  35. #35 |  JOHN |