What Else Are Lake Charles Police Afraid Of?

Monday, July 9th, 2012

Last week Lake Charles police killed Monkey.

Monkey was a family dog — a friendly one, by all accounts. Monkey’s picture doesn’t suggest he was particularly intimidating. Granted, in that picture, he’s dead because a police officer has just shot him four times.

Monkey was barking at a policeman who was in his yard — not by invitation, but because he was chasing a suspect. The policeman, according to a statement, “felt he was being attacked by the dog and was forced to discharge his weapon.”

Police believe that we, the citizenry, should defer to their judgment about when deadly force is warranted. They tell us that they are the thin blue line between us and violent lawlessness.

If the police are afraid of dogs like Monkey, is it even minimally reasonable to accept those propositions?

–Ken White

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68 Responses to “What Else Are Lake Charles Police Afraid Of?”

  1. #1 |  BamBam | 

    NO. Cops are sociopaths. People need to stop believing the lies. Cops are not heroes, their job is not dangerous compared to many other professions, and they are not all that stands between State control (“civilization”) and bedlam. Cops are The State’s personal gang to ensure they maintain power through verbal/physical intimidation/violence. Liberty is not their priority, but rather maintaining status quo and generating revenue.

  2. #2 |  BamBam | 

    The police officer now felt he was being attacked by the dog and was forced to discharge his weapon which fatally wounded the dog.

    NO. The cop CHOSE to fire his weapon — no force was involved.

  3. #3 |  Ghost | 

    It’s only a matter of time before pets are included in Castle Law. This is out of hand.

  4. #4 |  Bobby Black | 

    Cops are such trigger happy pussies. Scared of everything that goes squeak in the night. This is the question I have been asking for years. If they are so fucking afraid of a little dog, furtive movements from 14 years olds, an old man in his house holding a butter knife, a kid on his stomach arms out and surrendering…then do they really need to be cops? Much less be issued anything deadlier than a spork?
    God damned bunch of ignorant little twats walking around arresting people dancing, chalking a sidewalk and more such idiocy. To a man I do not trust a fucking cop to take my damned garbage out, much less have the power of my life or death in their hands…

  5. #5 |  Burgers Allday | 

    The story of the Robert Leone beating has been sort of bubbling under for a couple weeks now (although it happened in 2011). I hadn’t been paying much attention (someone may have even linked it here, IDK), but a guy named Holhol has made a real interesting Youtube the Leone beating, which is linked here:

    http://police4aqi.wordpress.com/2012/07/07/pa-state-police-beat-robert-leone-pretty-badly/

    Mr. Narrator talks like a robot and the vid is long and seems boring at first, but I found it to be quite worthwhile.

  6. #6 |  derfel cadarn | 

    If these big tough LEOs are so afraid of puppy dogs they must scared $h!tless of small children. These taxfeeder morons need to find new jobs after their stint in prison.

  7. #7 |  earl | 

    Damnable bastards.

  8. #8 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    “In doing so, it is believed that one of the suspects ran into the back yard of 3204 Hodges Street and fled through a gate which led to the front yard. The suspect left the gate open which allowed the family dog the ability to chase after the suspect. One of the pursuing police officers ran in front of 3204 Hodges Street, the dog diverted his attention from the suspect to the police officers and began running towards him. The police officer now felt he was being attacked by the dog and was forced to discharge his weapon which fatally wounded the dog. All three suspects were arrested in the area by other responding police officers.”

    Pay attention to this part of the official press release. It says the suspect ran into the backyard of the residence and left the gate open. Note that the dog did not attack the first person–the suspect–that came running through his yard. But when the “dog diverted his attention from the suspect to the police officers” suddenly the dog is vicious. Really? If the dog didn’t run up and attack the suspect, why did the officer suddenly feel so threatened.

    This press release reveals a lot, but also contains the usual rationalization process. As Bam Bam (#2) noted, the officer was not “forced” to discharge his weapon. He decided to discharge his weapon. And the rest of the press release is all about praising the heroic efforts of the officers. Well its great if they got the correct robbery suspects, but it in no way justifies what happened to this dog.

  9. #9 |  a_random_guy | 

    This wording in the police report stands out: “The police officer now felt he was being attacked by the dog and was forced to discharge his weapon which fatally wounded the dog.”

    The rest of the report is very objective and dispassionate. This is the only place that emotions and implied motivations are described. This sentence should properly read “The police officer discharged his weapon, which fatally wounded the dog”.

    The question of feelings and motivations, of “why” the police officer fired his weapon: these are properly topics for a board of inquiry. They should not be posited in the police report.

  10. #10 |  Bronwyn | 

    My FB grapevine says this fellow: http://www.wpri.com/dpp/news/local_news/blackstone/lincoln-offficer-edward-krawetz-set-to-testify-at-trial

    is looking to get his job back. Another one to add to Radley’s nut-punch file, if it isn’t already in there.

  11. #11 |  frankania | 

    What a coincidence; I was born in Lake Charles and lived on Hodges st. Now 72 years later, I live in Mexico!

  12. #12 |  Yizmo Gizmo | 

    re #9“The police officer now felt he was being attacked by the dog and was forced to discharge his weapon which fatally wounded the dog.”

    Yes, the touchy-feely part in the top line looks scripted by the police, while the other text looks like “just the facts, ma’am.”
    When the Fourth Estate becomes the lapdog of the State, watch out,
    bad things happen, mighty bad things…

  13. #13 |  Lorenzo | 

    The woman is grieving. Grief often turns to anger. Anger often turns to aggressiveness and lashing out. Therefore the officer should have shot the lady while he was at it. He had every reason to feel afraid of a crying old lady.

  14. #14 |  Irish Mike | 

    This sentence should properly read “The police officer discharged his weapon, which fatally wounded the dog”.

    Actually it should read “the police officer then shot and killed the dog.” “Discharged his weapon” isn’t as bad as “his weapon discharged” but it remains an attempt to portray the action in a passive manner.

  15. #15 |  Dante | 

    This will never stop until the police are punished for their actions. Anger and rage will not suffice, we need to punish the police severly (and all who support them) so they would rather take the chance of being bitten by a dog than face the consequences of shooting it.

    Protect & Serve (Themselves!)

  16. #16 |  Maria | 

    @14 I know, they always make it sound like some nebulous force beyond will, beyond self directed action, beyond choice causes these officers to be in situations where guns go off and shoot hapless dogs.

    If I used such terminology in my job I’d be marched up to HR and written up about my passive aggressiveness and inability to accept responsibility for my own poor choices and mistakes.

  17. #17 |  el coronado | 

    If any of y’all were wondering whether our transition to an outright Police State is complete, you can stop now. Been reading this blog for 3+ years now, and the puppycide posts are coming ever faster and more tragic: cops are clearly killing dogs just because a) for a certain type of asshole – the kind who gravitates to copping – killing dogs is FUN! b) because they KNOW, with absolute certainty, that they’ll get away with it without so much as a warning char placed in their personnel file.

    And the outrage on sites such as this has devolved to muted discussion over the use of passive voice and/or terminology in the report the dog killer uses to justify his contemptible cowardly acts. This on a (supposedly) Libertarian site. *sigh* Damn, I hate having been born 100 years too late these days…..I really do.

  18. #18 |  Burgers Allday | 

    Been reading this blog for 3+ years now, and the puppycide posts are coming ever faster and more tragic: cops are clearly killing dogs just because a) for a certain type of asshole – the kind who gravitates to copping – killing dogs is FUN! b) because they KNOW, with absolute certainty, that they’ll get away with it without so much as a warning char placed in their personnel file.

    No. The reason is that they are coming back from Iraq and becoming policemen here in the US. Any policeman who served in either of the Gulf Wars will always shoot the dog and never not shoot the dog. That is how their are trained deep deep down in their hearts and their minds.

    Now we don’t even get to know their names whe they shoot the dog. Again, this is the Iraq War coming home.

  19. #19 |  Tragedy | Lawyers on Strike | 

    […] This is another reason cops should maybe be mostly unarmed, but not as serious. Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInMoreEmailRedditDiggStumbleUponPrintTumblrLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. […]

  20. #20 |  (B)oscoH, Yogurt Eater | 

    RIP Monkey.

  21. #21 |  winston smith | 

    #15 | Dante’s right.

    “This will never stop until the police are punished for their actions.”

  22. #22 |  KristenS | 

    The question of feelings and motivations, of “why” the police officer fired his weapon: these are properly topics for a board of inquiry. They should not be posited in the police report.

    This was a press release, not a report.

  23. #23 |  Linda | 

    It is a sad, sad day when a police officer investigating a crime, creates additional victims.

  24. #24 |  Fascist Nation | 

    Of course. They have a gun. They can do as they please. Serf!

  25. #25 |  Fascist Nation | 

    Funny how them dogs never seem to bother the fleeing suspects, eh?

  26. #26 |  GeneralGarbage | 

    We are all hajis now.

  27. #27 |  el coronado | 

    @#18 –

    Ahhhh, the ol’ ‘being in the military turns ‘em into mindless soulless doggie killas’ jive, eh, burgers? Uh-huh. Well, everyone’s entitled to his opinion, no matter how stupid it might be, and I reckon that applies to you, too. Quick question, though: the template for LEO puppycide, and still maybe the two most egregious and infamous cases of it, are 1) the dipshit US marshal who bravely shot the Weaver family dog, thus precipitating the Ruby Ridge atrocity, and 2) the fact the FBI and DEA dipshits bravely shot the Davidians’ mama dog and her pups *even though they were penned up at the time*.

    That was 1992, and 1993. Are you suggesting those diabolical Iraqi war vets have somehow stumbled onto the long-sought Secret of Time Travel and are going back in time to to their dastardly deeds? Is that what you’re saying? Or would you rather just skip over that, since it doesn’t fit into whatever problem it’s obvious you have with the military? Also, why wasn’t there an epidemic of puppycide in the ’70’s, when the drug-addled, thousand-yard-starin’ Vietnam vets came home? Might it have been because Vietnam was a democrat war, and is thus immune from idiotic criticisms?

  28. #28 |  Charlie O | 

    Cops are cowards. Nuff said.

  29. #29 |  SInchy | 

    Was at my inlaws house last week and went out to find the collie dog halfway in the UPS truck. I went over to get her and ask if the driver was OK. He said he was looking for treats and he and the dog were friends. I hate to imagine what would have happened if was a police instead of a UPS man.
    I seems like delivery people, mailmen, pizza guys etc. all have better methods and procedures for dealing with dogs than the police.

  30. #30 |  a_random_guy | 

    Actually, soldiers to have better fire discipline than this. Shooting non-aggressive dogs is amateur hour stuff.

  31. #31 |  marie | 

    It is a sad, sad day when a police officer investigating a crime, creates additional victims.

    And even sadder day is when a police officer investigating a crime commits crimes and nobody bothers to investigate his crimes.

  32. #32 |  TomG | 

    1) What percent of these cases ever result in compensation to the dog’s owners? (I’m guessing <2%)
    2) No police officer should EVER fire at a dog which has not yet bitten him (or someone else in the vicinity). "Feeling threatened" by an dog is just a pathetic excuse.

  33. #33 |  faloi | 

    @18 – Actually, Radley has even written an article or two about how police deployed overseas are worse than the military.
    http://www.theagitator.com/2010/05/14/more-militarized-than-the-military/
    http://reason.com/blog/2007/05/01/tanks-for-nothing

    The military is not the problem. It’s not “the Iraq war coming home,” it’s deeper than that.

  34. #34 |  Burgers Allday | 

    Here is one for you, Mr. Ken:

    http://www.oregonlive.com/news-network/index.ssf/2012/07/no_wrongdoing_by_swat_officer.html

    DA did good or bad here?

  35. #35 |  Burgers Allday | 

    That was 1992, and 1993. Are you suggesting those diabolical Iraqi war vets have somehow stumbled onto the long-sought Secret of Time Travel and are going back in time to to their dastardly deeds? Is that what you’re saying? Or would you rather just skip over that, since it doesn’t fit into whatever problem it’s obvious you have with the military?

    re-read my post.

    your Ruby Ridge and Waco examples only bolster my point.

  36. #36 |  C. S. P. Schofield | 

    Funny how the cops never seem that interested in Bubba’s dog Monster; the Rottweiler/Alligator cross with the attitude problem. Of course that might have something to do with Bubba’s reputation for not taking a lot of sh*t from anybody.

    I used to wait for a story about a cop who got gunned down by an outraged dog owner. I really expected to see one, because Americans, bless their sentimental hearts, love their dogs to the edge of unreason. Then I realized; we are never going to see such a story, because the kind of cop that pulls this crap is the kind of cop who is too big a coward to ever put himself crosswise of an armed citizen who might actually shoot his ass.

    Burgers,

    I know you deeply distrust the Military, but I have to say that my personal experience with ex-military types who had actually been up the sharp end has been that they are not trigger happy goons. If there is actually any statistical basis for your assertion that a lot of these moron-cops are vets, I would frankly expect to find that the bad ones are former REMF types, projecting unearned machismo. This would also line up with my experience that the very worst types of rent-a-cops are not the moonlighting policemen, but the frustrated wannabees.

  37. #37 |  Acertainflorentine | 

    In this situation, what is the legal recourse for the dog’s owners? Can they sue? Would they have a case? Based on what?

  38. #38 |  Dan Danknick | 

    This photo just broke my heart. So I’m glad you posted it, Ken. We (the serfs) need the emotional connection to these “isolated events” to spur us to action against the “elite” as the intellectual tie is too easily ignored.

    That poor family. And that lazy, good for nothing coward of a cop.

  39. #39 |  demize! | 

    God I detest these people from the very pediment of my soul. What type of malicious goon discharges a weapon into a fat old dog and claims he found it a threat? Either a sub-moron or a malicious goon, either way he should be jailed.

  40. #40 |  Burgers Allday | 

    In this situation, what is the legal recourse for the dog’s owners? Can they sue? Would they have a case? Based on what?

    They potentially have claims under two sources:

    1. State tort law (eg, trespass to chattels, conversion, negligence, etc.)

    and

    2. 42 USC 1983 for Constitutional violations.

    STATE TORT LAW: The problem with this is that state’s are allowed to decide (as part of their “soverneighty”) whether and how government officials can be sued for torts (or contracts or anyting else). At least some states make it difficult to bring or maintain actions in tort against government officials because they can.

    SECTION 1983: This is not meant as a substitute for state tort law, but is only for Constitutional violations. While a piece of police behavior can be a tort and a Constitutional violation at the same time: not all torts are Constitutional violations and not all Constitutional violations are torts. For example, if a policeman on patrol runs over a pedestrian that is likely to amount to the tort of negligence, but it is not a Constitutional violation (unless perhaps the policeman ran over the pedestrian in an attempt to seize (that is, arrest or detain) the pedestrian. But, if it was just some guy walking in the road, and the policeman was fiddling with his radio which caused the running over, then there is not going to be a Section 1983 claim. There may or may not be a state law tort claim depending upon how the state has allowed its own government officials to be sued for tort in that state.

    A SHORTCOMING OF SECTION 1983: One “problem” with section 1983 is that the police behavior must not merely be unConstitutional, but, further, the government official must have effective prior notice that the behavior is unConstitutional. For example, let’s say that policemen spend 12 hours doing a “protective sweep” of a residence. One might argue that this violates the 3d Amendment prohibition on “quartering of troops.” The idea is that the policemen are there so long that they can considered to be “quartered” there within the meaning of the 3d Amendment. However, because there is not really pre-existing notice that a ten hour stay would be considered as a “quartering.” This requirement of the govt official having to have decent notice of the unConstitutionality in order that a Section 1983 violation may be found is called “qualified immunity.” I write a blog on te intersection of the 4th Amendment and qualified immunity. It is called police4aqi.wordpress.com. Really, when you read all the cases in this vein (as I try to do), qualified immunity is not as bad of a problem as one might think. The main problem in 4a qualified immunity cases is that some judges make credibility determinations (which they are not generally supposed to do) in favor of police and/or against section 1983 plaintiffs. However, those judges would probably do that whether qualified immunity existed or not.

    A BIGGER PROBLEM WITH SECTION 1983: To my mind, the bigger problem with section 1983 is that injunctive relief is generally categorically denied. What I mean by this, in practical terms, is that a judge cannot say: “there may be small to non-existent money type damages here, but I will now declare the police behavior unConstitutional and draw up an injunction against any police in my judicial district from doing what the defendant policeman did in this case — that way if other policeman do the same thing then they will not only be on the hook under section 1983, but they will also be in violation of my court’s injunction.” As a policy matter, this is what should be happening, but, at least under current law, this does not happen. After all, these cases are about the principle of the thing and not the money. While that kind of thinking is considered as anathema in most civil law cases, section 1983 should be an exception to this typical civil judiciary aversion to just-for-the-principle-of-the-thing thinking.

    Getting back to your question: there may be viable state tort law claims AND section 1983 claims for shooting the dog. To play out the legal analysis of the section 1983 claim, the analysis goes as follows: shooting the dog is a form of “seizing” it, so the Fourth Amendment applies. This means that the shooting of the dog must be done pursuant to a warrant, or due to “exigent circumstances.” In order to be valid under exigent circumstances there has to be: (i) probable cause to think the suspect (that was being chased) committed a crime; and (ii) there has to be a “reasonable basis to believe” that the dog was going to visit serious injury or death upon the policeman absent the seizure by shooting. Number (i) is probably met here. Number (ii) can be argued either way and probably will be. Besides the 4a claim for unreasonable seizure of the dog, there may be a distinct 4a claim for excessive force. In other words, a court may say that was acceptable to seize the dog, but that the policeman used excessive force in making this seizure. Once again, this can be argued either way. The plaintiff will say that taser or pepper spray could have band should have been used, even in the context of a chase of a burglar, while the defendant officer will say that shooting was the only reliableand quick way to get on with his chase. The excessive force claim would be a lot more appealing to a judge, of course, if one of those bullets ended up in the lady instead of the dog.

  41. #41 |  Burgers Allday | 

    CORRECTION:

    –However, because there is not really pre-existing notice that a 12 hour stay would be considered as a “quartering” and/or that policemen can be considered as “troops,” this section 1983 claim would probably fail upon an invocation of qualified immunity by th defendant police officers who were hanging out at the house for those 12 hours.–

  42. #42 |  Dante | 

    How much longer before the police begin to find our children threatening, and use that to justify shooting them?

    Our Grandparents?

    Our cats?

  43. #43 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    Dante, our mere existence is a threat to the police…and they are probably right.

  44. #44 |  Fremdfirma | 

    C. S. P. Schofield ?

    It was not given much coverage, especially in the US, but there WAS such a story back in August 2011, and it’s almost shameful that the first coverage of it outside of very local was that rag Rge Daily Mail, despite the incident itself happening in eastern Pennsylvania.
    The article link is here.
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2025812/Police-officer-Robert-Lasso-shot-dead-pointing-stun-gun-mans-dogs.html

    American media becomes more irrelevant with every passing day it seems.

  45. #45 |  el coronado | 

    @#41 –

    Ohhhh, they’re working up to it, never fear. Hell, it’s already happening, kind of. Just substitute “taze” for “shoot”, and do a google/youtube search. Grandmaws, pregnant women, alzheimers patients, uppitty/mouthy cripples, 6-year-olds throwing tantrums….they all already get tazed. (soon to be “shot”, rest assured.) Fluffy *must be* next on the list, since there’s no one else left. I can already see the report: “The officer is allergic to felines, and felt the feline’s presence represented a dire threat of sniffles and sneezing. Thus, the officer’s weapon discharged 14 times into the feline. The feline’s owner, a 7-year-old female, disregarding lawful orders to ‘step away from the feline carcass!’, gave the officer some stinkeye and disrespectful backtalk, and thus had to be shot as well. The officer’s recent training in the Mozambique drill saved many innocent lives, this officer feels certain. Medals and commendations for all!”

  46. #46 |  Mannie | 

    #25 | Fascist Nation | July 9th, 2012 at 11:36 am

    Funny how them dogs never seem to bother the fleeing suspects, eh?

    That’s because the dogs go after the bad guys. :-)

    How much longer before the police begin to find our children threatening, and use that to justify shooting them?

    Our Grandparents?

    They already are, just not so often. They still get away with it.

    #35 | C. S. P. Schofield | July 9th, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    I have to say that my personal experience with ex-military types who had actually been up the sharp end has been that they are not trigger happy goons.

    Roger that. For one thing, they are more closely and more aggressively supervised. It really irritates me when people talk about “The Militarization of the Police.” Most of the abuses we discuss here, would get a GI’s arse court martialled.

  47. #47 |  Kitty Antonik Wakfer | 

    I strongly recommend that anyone who has the capability, obtain the name and photo of the “police officer” who “felt he was being attacked by the dog and was forced to discharge his weapon.” and publicize it widely.

    This public identification will enable those in Lake Charles and surrounding areas (and even at a distance) who think that his action is unacceptable have the opportunity to withdraw all voluntary association with him until and unless he restitutes the owners of Monkey in the manner that they deem acceptable to them.

    Withdrawal of voluntary association – shunning – is a very powerful persuasive tool; no violence or even threat of it – simply no sales, no service, no camaraderie… no anything. This is negative Social Preferencing and together with positive Social Preferencing, preferential association towards those who provide value to an individual assessor, is the ultimate effector of social order for a society of self-responsible individuals voluntarily interacting for the maximization of the lifetime Happiness of each, all at the same time. Even in the current very unfree societies (of which the US is a major one), negative Social Preferencing can be effectively used to influence individual social behavior and the actions of the State. More about this concept: http://selfsip.org/solutions/Social_Preferencing.html

  48. #48 |  Gregg | 

    Useless, abusive cops, yet another violation of our rights. The gov’t constantly violates our rights.
    They violate the 1st Amendment by caging protesters and banning books like “America Deceived II”.
    They violate the 4th and 5th Amendment by allowing TSA to grope you.
    They violate the entire Constitution by starting undeclared wars.
    Impeach Obama, support Ron Paul.
    Last link of “America Deceived II” before it is completely banned:
    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1450257437/theagitator-20/

  49. #49 |  AlgerHiss | 

    The city of Lake Charles can be contacted at:

    http://www.cityoflakecharles.com/

    The Chamber of Commerce:

    http://www.chamberofcommerce.com/lake-charles-la/

  50. #50 |  AlgerHiss | 

    “was forced to discharge his weapon”

    Normal, law abiding Americans do not “discharge a weapon”. They shoot something.

    Only people that have something to hide “discharge a weapon”.

    And the “discharge” is more than likely vaginal discharge.

  51. #51 |  Discord | 

    This picture is absolutely heart-wrenching. My thoughts are with the family. I hope the pig that committed this murder is held accountable. I know that accountability won’t come from his peers or the state, but it is my sincere hope that he meets it some other way.

  52. #52 |  Burgers Allday | 

    They already are, just not so often. They still get away with it.

    On a related note:

    In the Aiyana Stanley-Jones slaying case, officer Weekley is trying to use the defense that he was already in the unit when a flash-bang was tossed in by another policeman, and that the flashband disoriented and confused him, causing him to shoot the child in the head and kill her.

    nd, thank you so much fredfirma. i linked links to the hitcho case here several times over a long period of time and nobody ever seemed to notice. btw, in the Hitcho case the jury apparently believed that Officer Laser was only fixing to taser the dogs. I don’t believe that at all.

  53. #53 |  Burgers Allday | 

    close italics. oops.

  54. #54 |  Jason E Bintz | 

    http://www.animallaw.info/cases/caustx81tex222.htm
    Heiligmann v. Rose, Texas Supreme Court 1891.

    This is an old case which initially declares that dogs are not property and owners may collect damages from plaintiffs. Although I am not a lawyer, I think it’s time this case be brought back into the forefront, especially with all the recent puppycides.

    Maybe the cops will think twice after someone wins a case and gets damages from a local police force.

  55. #55 |  Burgers Allday | 

    Maybe the cops will think twice after someone wins a case and gets damages from a local police force.

    would be interesting to see what Baylen Linkinghim (sp?) sez about this. i think he is guest blogging here now. the Fonz sez eating them doggies is cool. Ayyyyyyyy!

  56. #56 |  C. S. P. Schofield | 

    Fremdfirma,

    Thank you. I must say I would like to know what happened after. I suppose that whether the shooter was convicted or not probably was affected by how many people’s dogs the cops had recently shot in the area the jury was drawn from.

  57. #57 |  Burgers Allday | 

    CSP: Hitcho got the death penalty and is scheduled to die. there is a tempest in a teacup in central pa because $116,000 was spent on his defense (mostly to prove Hitcho was insane (which he wasn’t) and not to prove that Lasso was about to shoot his dogs).

  58. #58 |  Bergman | 

    A private citizen is expected to withdraw from danger, rather than run toward it. Even in stand your ground states, a citizen can get in trouble by running towards a fight rather than running away (or staying put). Police are expected to put themselves in greater danger as a regular part of the job than any private citizen.

    So what would happen to a private citizen, even in a stand your ground state, who applied the same standards these police officers have been, when evaluating whether a situation warranted use of deadly force?

    The citizen would swiftly be in prison for unjustified use of force.

  59. #59 |  Vic Kelley | 

    Thank you for this article and for the photo. I wish I could do something for that woman. There is so much grief there.

    re: #17 – you’re right; I wish you weren’t but you are

    re: #11 – I think about leaving the USA every day; wish I had the nerve to do so

  60. #60 |  Frank Hummel | 

    That cop will one day be shot in the back by a junkie during a routine traffic stop. Nobody will ever know about it….

  61. #61 |  croaker | 

    @60 Which is a shame, because when it comes to cops, we should be speaking ill of the dead. A dead cop’s disciplinary record should be considered when it’s time for the “hero’s funeral”.

  62. #62 |  John Spragge | 

    Reading this board, I find I have to stop and remember that American police did not arrive on flying saucers from Betelgeuse or Tau Ceti; no council of extraterrestrials dictates the polices and laws that govern them without human input. Especially in the United States, the voters have tremendous power over their officials; where a police supervisor does not have to face election, he or she serves under the supervision and at the pleasure of an official who does. The United States has police officers who stop and frisk, shoot dogs, abuse the citizenry with forfeiture laws, and beat homeless people to death because Americans elect officials, city councils, and state legislatures who tolerate and indeed often encourage that behaviour.

    Freedom starts with responsibility, and responsibility starts with naming. Americans have chosen your legislators and executive officials, just as my compatriots have chosen ours. If you don’t like what your laws say, if you don’t like the way your police act, you have the power to change them. If your fellow citizens continue to vote for intrusive drug laws, for civic officials who tolerate brutality and incompetence, or for the institutionalized corruption of “civil forfeiture”, then you badly need to educate your fellow citizens. Entertaining fantasies about shooting individual police officers, or writing as though the current American policing regime came from someplace outside your country will not solve the problem.

  63. #63 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    #62 John Spragge:

    I agree with you that violent fantasies won’t solve our law enforcement problems in the U.S. I reject such strategies unless the violence is clearly used in self-defense. In these cases I tend to agree with Malcom X, who stated: “I don’t even call it violence when it’s self-defense. I call it intelligence.” But most of those who comment here are not calling for some sort of preemptive violence. Indeed, the goal of Radley Balko, as well of many of us who read The Agitator is to educate our fellow citizens, as you recommend.

    However, if you are suggesting that electoral victories will fix these problems, I must disagree. Choosing a more enlightened bunch of people to tell us what to do should not be the long term goal. Sure their are a few people in political office who consistently speak their mind and follow their conscience, but the system turns most representatives into conformists and cowards. This phenomenon backs up Rosseau’s argument that choosing representatives for yourself drastically limits your freedom. As my personal philosophy has evolved towards anarchism, I have begun to reject the idea of representative democracy. Instead, I advocate participatory democracy.

    At the present time, probably less than half of those eligible to vote in the U.S. actually go to the polls. And frankly, I don’t consider this to be a bad thing. I do wish voter apathy would turn into voter action (as in direct action) though. If more people simply refused to cooperate and/or ignored the state, things could change pretty rapidly. After that, the challenge is, as the IWW preamble says, “to build the new society out of the shell of the old society.” So you are correct that freedom starts with responsibility. But people need to realize that responsibility entails a lot more than going to polls.

  64. #64 |  Bob Smith | 

    I am always amazed at how cops are so much more likely than everybody else to mistake “approach to play” for “approach to attack”.

  65. #65 |  Dan Weber | 

    I don’t like dogs. And these stories still make my blood boil.

  66. #66 |  stray | 

    Remember years ago when cops were still actually men and you would always hear them say the same thing, “I have been on the force for 40 years and have NEVER drawn my gun once in all that time!”

  67. #67 |  Marc S | 

    That picture made me cry. Monkey looks exactly like my dog Comet. I feel so sorry for that woman, that I can’t read any more bad news about the country of my birth. I thank my Kiwi wife everyday for her demands that our children not be raised in America. Good luck and God Speed to every sane person left in America because the Government is going to bring the end of a very beautiful nation.

  68. #68 |  Marino396 | 

    Welcome to the new breed of LEO, unthinking, fearful, and always ready to, protect and to serve……. His best interests, a lot of great points have been brought up here about what reactions are happening in some cases of murdered dogs, the hitchko case , maybe a tragedy but if you heard someone ordered to KILL your beloved dogs, would you react? Of course, and the ruby ridge particulars along with the branch davidian puppycide I did not know about, people will begin to react and yes I think the actual shooters name should be publicly published and that person be shunned and shamed, just a few months ago Baxter the dog in pen broke pines was shot at and later side from 6 bullets fired by a public servant??? By the way guess how big and mean he was, check you tube and you will see a dog that I would have no fear of taking a bite from, The cop on the scenes said , we don’t have to wait to get bit before we defend ourselves,
    When I was a kid I looked up to brave tuff rugged cops, now I almost throw up when I see them, This whole thing is going to really get difficult for cops when people start to fight back whether legally or otherwise,
    Man what cowards……. Ps UPS drivers aren’t shooting dogs, USPS don’t, but then again, protect and serve, lol what a crock!

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