Reason.tv: Exclusive Footage: DC Cop Brings Gun to a Snowball Fight!

As Jesse Walker noted earlier today, an armed confrontation between snowball-throwing DC residents and police took place during the day's historic snowfall.

Around 2.30PM on Saturday, December 19, residents at the intersection of 14th and U Streets NW started throwing snowballs at passing Hummers.

One of the cars pelted was driven by a plainclothes police officer identified only as Det. Baylor. Baylor got out of his car and brandished his gun at the crowd.

Reason.tv's Dan Hayes was on the scene, capturing the tense confrontation between police and citizens who chanted "Don't bring a gun to a snowball fight!"

Approximately 5 minutes; harsh language throughout.

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  • Mike Moon||

    But there could have been rocks in those snowballs!

  • jester||

    grenades. there coulda been grenades.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    That would've been interesting... but where does one get grenades in DC? It's supposed to be a safe city, with their laws restricting civilian gun ownersh- er, never mind.

  • kinnath||

    500 fricking posts.

    I got here late, and there's no way I'm digging through them.

    Can any one summarize?

  • dfd||

    Even if you hadn't got here late, with the threaded comments you have to go through all 500 every time to see if and where anyone responded. It's utterly absurd and threaded comments don't belong in this kind of forum. I doubt there are many people here from before the threads that think the comment section has been improved by them and many who know it has been harmed by them. For a site called Reason... please do what's right and get rid of them!

  • ||

    Actually, for someone coming late, the threaded format is superior, since you can just skip over chains of posts you're not interested in, which you can't do in the linear format.

    What we do need is some type of greasemonkey script or whatever that highlights all the posts that came after a certain time. It's not my trade so I'll leave it up to the web geniuses of the community.

  • ||

    OUR STORY, THUS FAR

    Ecoterrorists riot: fire, destruction, vandalism, looting, pillage, rape, cannibalism, snowballs, Lack of Proper Respect for Authoritah... the usual.

    Enter valiant Officer of the Lawz (Armed and Extremely Dangerous), who singlehandedly subdues teh Unroooly Maaaaahhb; the script pretty much writes itself.

    Surprise Ending, however; no weapons actually discharged, all of Man's Best Friends safe and accounted for.

    Standard FilthyHippy nitpicking re: tactics and procedures.

    Special Guest Pontificators chastise hippies, defend the right of aforementioned Valiant Officer to brandish firearms, indiscriminately threaten grievous bodily harm to the Little People of this our fair land, urge respect and obeisance.

    And they all lived happily ever after;

    The End.

  • ||

    I have a lot to say in response, but the most glaring thing is the misuse of the word "obeisance".

  • Obama||

    Yeah - you calling me fat?

  • jester||

    "Fuck you, Pig!"

    RACIST! (well when shouted by a white urbanite to a black cop)

  • keith||

    You are a fucking moron! It's "copist" and nothing more. If a moron happens to be black, calling him a moron doesn't make you a racist.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Don't we have enough words ending in "ist" without having to invent new ones?

  • keith||

    uh... that was a made up "ist" which was attempting to illustrate the absurdity of the "racist" comment. Sorry if it was a bit subtle for you.

  • jester||

    Keith, absurdity is self-evident. That was my mini production of Theatre a la Absurde. Do you take everything so literally?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Sorry, dude, thought you were being serious.

  • Suki||

    static stateist

  • JB||

    What if you call him something else because you know it will piss him off?

    Many times people use specific epitaphs because they desire to produce more anger. I never understand how that sentiment makes someone a racist.

  • jester||

    The chapter 'Seven Words You Can't Say on Television' in Steven Pinker's 'The Stuff of Thought' covers that quite well.

    To me those with patronizing attitudes to people based on their origin are the real bigots.

  • Joe_D||

    So, like, you'd say... "Here lies a bad cop."? or, "Hated husband. Abusive father. Gun-wielding maniac. Too bad it took him so long to die."?

  • BlogDog||

    Epithet. Not epitaph.

  • JB||

    lol. 3am typing.

  • Stretchy||

    Do people still actually use the word "pig" to refer to the police? The 60's called, they want their lingo back.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Far-left college students always, or at least often (in my experience) use hippie lingo. I don't know for a fact that those students were leftists. I'm just saying.

  • JB||

    It's 14th and U street. Nearly all those folks are leftists.

  • Suki||

    Leftists who target only Hummers! The chant script was not as polished as a WTO protest. Nobody called him a planet killer either? I am disappointed.

  • Mary Stack||

    "I don't know for a fact that those students were leftists" They are kids and really politics are just words. The only party they have committed to is the one on friday night.

  • ||

    They're probably not students. Most of the denizens of the 14th and U area are late 20s, early 30s leftoids with government or NGO jobs.

  • jester||

    It does seem quite Tate-period Mansonesque.

  • ed||

    Do people still actually use the word "pig" to refer to the police?

    Lots of H&R commenters do, but usually only after they've been riled up over a Radley Balko story.

  • ||

    Do people still actually use the word "pig" to refer to the police?

    Only when they're acting that way, which is becoming regrettably frequent as the War on Drugs wears on.

    -jcr

  • RTL||

    To borrow from Maureen Dowd...

    You might have heard "Fuck you, Pig!", but I heard "Fuck you, Boy!"

  • ||

    party pooper!!

  • ||

    Tis the season to not be a scrooge!!

  • Col. Hogan||

    The police are getting crazier and crazier. It's being fueled both by the inability to prosecute criminal cops and by the growing number of unConstitutional federal alphabet soup jack-booted thug squads.

    They should be reminded who works for whom, but who's going to bell the cat?

  • Commandant Klink||

    HOOOOGAAAANNN!!!

  • Sgt. Schultz||

    I vill get the situation under control, Herr Kommandant! Back! Back into the barracks, you jolly jokers!

  • Joe_D||

    My guess is that cops are somewhat better behaved now than they have been in the past. It's just that we have more cameras now to reveal how wise Lord Acton was.

  • ||

    Which Lord Acton please, and what did he say?

    Thanks

  • Joe_D||

    The Lord Acton who said, "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."

  • ||

    People forget that his quote ended, "but it rocks absolutely, too!"

  • JohnD||

    One reason the cops are getting "crazier and crazier" is because so many criminals that they arrest get of scott free or with a slap on the wrist. I know some and they will tell you how frustrating it is that leftist judges refuse to convict criminals. In case it's escaped you, the American "justice" system is broken.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    I could swear the prison-industrial complex has already grown out of proportion. So if cops are so frustrated, maybe they should push for the legalization of 'victimless crimes' (i.e. minor drug offenses), so the justice system can reserve more resources for serious crimes.

  • JR||

    Hm, to be fair they did hit the gunman in the head a few times, something I hadn't read about on the other sites.

  • TC||

    I'm with you on that...

  • KenK||

    I blame Global Warming(tm), and Bush of course.

  • JB||

    Obama the tard goes to Copentarded and God responds by shitting on his head with 2 feet of snow in DC.

    That God shit on his head with WHITE snow shows that God has a sense of humor.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Of course, if you ever see BLACK snow, you know an extinction level event has just happened.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Still overkill on the cop's part.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Props to that second cop for trying to de-escalate the situation though.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    HE was a good cop.

    Wait... good cop/bad cop scenario, and they're not even in an interrogation room working over a rape suspect! This has to be a rare occasion...

  • That Guy||

    Exactly what I was thinking.

  • ||

    There is no try, only do.

    I didn't think he did enough. Letting the snowballed cop continue to get up in peoples faces was pretty unprofessional.

  • ||

    *un-new-professionalism-istic

  • ||

    Indeed. The MD "cop" should have been arrested for assault the moment he grabbed that one guy out of the crowd and threw him on the car.

  • ||

    Fuck these hipsters, they are damaging someones' property. Just wondering, if a civilian (in a normal place that doesn't have restrictive carry laws) takes out a gun as a threat to stop the damaging of their property, what would happen?

  • Balloon Maker||

    Snowballs is scary

  • JB||

    I could probably kill you with a ball of water.

  • Suki||

    He was killing the planet with his Hummer!

  • JohnD||

    Suki is a moron

  • Suki||

    JohnD's sarcasm tag reader is broken.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    It's a common mechanical failure on the internets.

  • Al Gore||

    Just because I invented the internet, doesn't mean it wasn't loaded with bugs by the massive right-wing conspiracy.

  • Rae||

    Word up! Assault! Shoot those kids.

  • Daniel Memenode||

    Wasn't it "public property" (AKA unowned cause it can't be anything else)?

  • Rodney King||

    People, I just want to say, you know, can we all get along? Can we get along? Can we stop making it, making it horrible for the older people and the kids?...It’s just not right. It’s not right. It’s not, it’s not going to change anything. We’ll, we’ll get our justice....Please, we can get along here. We all can get along. I mean, we’re all stuck here for a while. Let’s try to work it out. Let’s try to beat it. Let’s try to beat it. Let’s try to work it out.

  • Orlando Tom||

    Why can't we jjjjjust gggget alllong?

  • jinx2112||

    So Urban Assault Hummers are vulnerable to snowballs? Wow would have never guessed that the military would have developed such a wimpy vehicle. No wonder he felt so threatened.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    They don't build 'em like they usedta...

  • ||

    I don't think the military is concerned about scratches on the paint job. Regardless, it is not for you to decide what objects/substances can be thrown at other people's property. I thought that was a basic tenet of libertarianism, but The Misnomer Guy above is making me wonder.

  • jinx2112||

    Well, I was being facetious, but I digress. BLUF: This is what we know. The guy was driving through a massive and maybe silly snowball fight and his precious hummer takes a SNOWBALL hit. He gets out of said vehicle, brandishing a GUN. Perspective and ...dare I say, Reason? His action was way overblown just like your analysis of my comment.

  • Chilli||

    jinx2112|12.20.09 @ 3:38AM|#

    Well, I was being facetious, but I digress. BLUF: This is what we know. The guy was driving through a massive and maybe silly snowball fight and his precious hummer takes a SNOWBALL hit. He gets out of said vehicle, brandishing a GUN. Perspective and ...dare I say, Reason? His action was way overblown just like your analysis of my comment.

    Just felt I needed to point out that you have no way of knowing what happened leading up to the gun being pulled out as the video doesn't start until afterward. So that sorta makes your post... wrong (worse words were not used) and I would like to point out that he is a cop. Seeing as how you completely missed that. If they pull their gun for a traffic stop, why wouldn't they pull it for a mob committing assault and acting as though there is nothing wrong with it... let alone assault on a police officer? In fact after reading your post I am forced to ask, Is ignorance really bliss?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Still on your pointless jihad against me, Tulpa? Care to accuse me of bestiality again, like you did in the other thread?

    Why you've chosen to go the crayon route is puzzling. All I did was disagree with you - you're the one who has made it a personal mini-vendetta.

  • ||

    Yeah, all you did was accuse me of pussifying society because I don't think it's OK to throw stuff at strangers and their property.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I didn't do that as you suggest it, nor did I turn it into a disgusting "you have sex with animals" tangent.

  • Old Lady Driving Behind Hummer||

    He did what I would have wanted to but couldn't.

    Except for the gun part.

  • Don from Columbia Heights||

    I've seen this group of anti-war, anti-Bush, anti-globalization, anti-everything anarchists around the U street corridor before. It's the same crowd that hassles little old ladies in fur coats and throws rocks at police motorcades. Chances are that detective knew exactly who they were too. If so, I'd have gone for the shotgun myself ...

  • ||

    In the other thread, Jesse Walker is trying to convince me that it's just a coincidence that the eyewitness account says they were targeting Hummers. Riiiight.

  • Neu Mejican||

    You were claiming it was a violent environmentalist protest. Do you have ANY evidence of that?

  • Neu Mejican||

    http://www.brightestyoungthing.....all-fight/

    Well, they do say..."this may be complete anarchy."

    ;^)

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    I'm sticking with the theory I espoused at 1:33 A.M.

  • Jesse Walker||

    You were claiming it was a violent environmentalist protest. Do you have ANY evidence of that?

    It looks like there was a contingent of left-anarchists in the snowball fight, who were presumably the ones yelling "pig" etc. during the confrontation. It's also clear that the snowball fight included a number of locals, and that it was much too large to consist solely of DC's anarchist community. And of course, there's no sign of it being an "environmental" "protest." The one political sign I've heard of on the scene said "No War But Snow War," which is (a) not environmental and (b) kinda funny, so power to 'em.

  • Suki||

    Does Bound still have their parties there? I think it was near there a few years ago.

  • Chilli||

    Do you have any evidence saying it wasn't?

  • ||

    They should have pelted the hell out of that guy all at once. Then what happens? It would have been beautiful and poetic. People are such pussies.

  • Suki||

    That requires more coordination than chanting.

  • JohnD||

    Anyone (cop or otherwise) that pulls a gun because his car got hit by a snowball, is NOT someone to furthter annoy. He may of been in such a mental state that would have resulted in someones death.

  • Jennifer||

    Anyone who pulls a gun because his car got hit by a snowball cannot be trusted to wield the legal authority cops have.

  • ||

    Another uninformed person arrives on scene. Welcome, but please read Jesse's link from last night where it's made clear they threw snowballs at the cop before he drew the gun.

  • Thom||

    My brother was at this thing and was a little pissed off that today people are saying it was anti-war protest. HE claims that it was just a snowball fight, that they were targeting hummers because it was funny, and that the cops hysterics were the single funniest thing he has seen in quite a while, but there was nothing political about it.

  • vince||

    Cops can afford Hummers?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    They're not that expensive used, and now that the Chinese own Hummer, it's better to not buy a new one.

  • Suki||

    Just don't lick the lead paint and you should be fine.

  • crayon||

    I licked lead paint... what's the big deal? Hurr durr!

  • Bob #2||

    All cops can after they make deals with local drug dealers, grab Mexicans with bounties on their heads and share the bounty with a Mexican, and knock over the Armenian money train.

    (The Shield was a documentary, right?)

  • ||

    Probably logged a lot of 'overtime' making DC the safe city it is now.

  • Kanye||

    Yo, skinny white snowball dude, imma let you finish. But Henry Louis Gates had one of the best phony police brutality complaints OF ALL TIME.

  • travis||

    win

  • anono||

    huh?

  • Stacy||

    I like how the snowballers resist. YES!

  • hmm||

    Boston Massacre anyone?

  • hmm||

    For those who don't get the reference"

    Those who don't know are bound to relive.

  • hmm||

    Yet another reason for an armed populace. The good detective would think twice about drawing a weapon in an armed crowd. It's hard to bully people on equal footing.

  • all for packing||

    exactly

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    I agree with you about the 'armed populace' part, but discretion is the better part of valor for all parties involved in situations like this.

  • Detective Baylor||

    It's hard to bully people on equal footing.

    Unless there happen to be many of them, which is why...

  • Suki||

    But that would mean anarchy! Blood on the snow! They would have been throwing lead instead just like in Virginia!

  • ||

    And maybe idiot lefties would think twice about throwing snowballs at strangers and their property.

    I still can't believe you guys are on their side.

  • ||

    Got pelted with snowballs from the cool kids on the way home from school, huh? I guess that shit sticks with you a long time if you're a wuss.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Go read Fen's comments in the other snowball thread - he'd just shoot 'em, quote unquote. He must be compensating for something.

  • Brings new meaning...||

    ...to getting tickets for Policemen's Balls.

  • ||

    Have you ever had a snowball thrown at your windshield when you're driving?

    Not funny -- dangerous.

  • hmm||

    So dangerous you should threaten to shoot the people who did it.

  • That Guy||

    Yep. Pointed this out on the previous thread. Still doesn't excuse pulling a gun, IMHO.

    The more I think about this and watch the video, the more I think they were both in the wrong.

    People should have a reasonable expectation of being able to drive without having shit thrown at them.

    On the other hand, pointing a gun at unarmed civilians (especially if you're a cop) is totally unacceptable.

  • TC||

    I watched it twice and I didn't actually see him point the gun at anything but the ground. Did I miss something?

  • hmm||

    The gun never should have left its holster. If was not a cop he would be in jail under a list of charges a mile long.

  • ||

    Well, true, but if if he were not a cop, he would be in jail under a list of charges a mile long simply for having one in a holster.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Exactly, Henry.

  • That Guy||

    Ok, you may be right...

    Still, I don't think I can see the justification for the officer to even unholster the weapon after he's gotten out of the car, as there's no perceivable threat to his life at that point.

  • Pope Jimbo||

    Had them thrown at me, thrown a million at others...

    Unless you have a big ice chunk or a rock in them they are harmless.

    Sure if you get one on your windshield it can startle you, but dangerous? Only if you are doing some shit ass driving.

    If the guy had been on a freeway doing 70, then maybe I could see the danger part being a factor.

    Creeping through an unplowed street in a storm. Big fucking deal. You get some fluffy snow across your windshield which may obstruct your vision for 1 second.

    Of course, I live in Minnesota where you learn to drive in all sorts of snow, so we don't get freaked out by a bit of snow on our windshield.

    The guy over reacted. No two doubts about it.

    The snowballs that hit him in the head were far more dangerous than the ones that hit his windshield.

  • Nancy Pelosi||

    They are they aren't real snowballers. They are what we call artifical snowballers. They are bought and paid for by the right to bring down our fine DC police.

  • Harry Reid||

    Right, Nancy. It's OUR job to bring down our fine DC police.

  • Chuckles Schumer||

    I told you all this was going to happen.

    Just like I told you WTC2 was gonna happen before it happened.

    Buy the dips, sell the news, fellow travellers!

  • Bawny Fraank||

    This is thwat thappens thwhen you sthtupid people don't do thwhat your told.

    (I hope they hid the prosthtetutes and thpot.)

  • ||

    What a hypercatabolic, flagellating butthead.

  • Suki||

    What?

  • ||

    What a hypercatabolic, flagellating butthead.

  • iamse7en||

    This is just funny. That's all it is.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    The more I think about this and watch the video, the more I think they were both in the wrong.

    Let's see: overaggressive, reactionary cop, check. Whiny, massed protesters who (in their own minds) can do no wrong, check. Someone call the stereotype police!

  • ||

    yes! they all suck!

  • Seth||

    Washington DC: where only cops who hate snow fights are allowed to have guns

  • hmm||

    both were in the wrong. Only one threatened violence or death.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    True. I've had the misfortune of having to deal with dickheaded cops and I've also had the misfortune of dealing with know-it-all, pot-stirring college student types. I've had the good fortune of never having had to deal with both groups at the same time.

  • ||

    Throwing snowballs at someone is violence. And he never pointed the gun at anything but the ground.

  • ||

    Sorry, doesn't work that way. The moment you have a gun in hand is the moment you signal to the world that you're -ready to kill someone-. That's why 'intimidation' laws with deadly weapons are so strict.

    Every last person in that crowd would have well been within their self-defense rights to shoot and kill that 'officer' at that moment. There was no call, none whatsoever, for that officer to have his gun out. He threatened the lives of around 20 random people because one or two of them may-or-may-not have thrown a snowball. The fact that he accosted, pushed around, and arrested one of the crowd AT RANDOM furthers this point.

    There is no defense of this.

  • hmm||

    I didn't read all of the other thread, but two people I chat with online all the time said there was a bout a 4 block snowball fight going on. People were running all over pelting each other in this area. Both said it looked nothing like a protest, but they weren't sure it wasn't.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    It looked to me (on the film) like two crowds/groups running into eachother. The dude with the sign/shield-looking thing looked like a protester. The sign read: "US out of..."

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    It looked like a group of passersby running into a group of ne'er-do-well activists.

  • hmm||

    I'm just going on their account. They said people were running about all over with sheilds and snowballs. They both said there were at least three areas with groups pelting each other and some cars and that some larger groups were launching snowballs at each other.

    Both seemed to think it was more retards having fun than anything. But they admit to only seeing part of it.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    See, this is why I like the work of Dostoevsky. He could've given a thorough account of this event, replete with psychological realism.

  • Suki||

    Sounds like a protest to me.

  • ||

    I said this in the other thread, but I'll post it here again:

    1. The snowball throwers were violating property rights by throwing at innocent bystanders' vehicles. It's frankly sickening to see a bunch of supposed libertarians defending them for doing this.

    2. This video, like the previous one Jesse linked to, has been edited in a suspicious manner. Both neatly leave out the beginning of the encounter. An eyewitness reported that the guy only pulled a gun after being *himself* hit with snowballs. Perhaps that's not grounds for drawing a firearm, but let's not make this into a "cop terrorizes innocent citizens" story, cause it's not.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    In a nitpickish defense of the cop, while he unholstered his weapon, he did not brandish it or 'wave it around'. While he should never have even unholstered his weapon, he did show the requisite muzzle discipline of a professional.

  • Kant feel Pietzsche||

    Check out the video on the previous thread. He is clearly pointing at people with his gun while he says "you going to jail, you..."

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    That was a walkie-talkie, not a gun.

  • Hugh Akston||

    That was only in the re-release. It was a gun in the original version.

    Fuckin' Spielberg.

  • Suki||

    I am waiting for the light saber version.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    LOL @Hugh Akston and Suki.

  • Dello||

    "Don't mess with me, boy! I am your father!"

  • don't flinch||

    I think it could have played out differently had he slipped in the snow with a gun in his hand.

    Let's pretend DC laws are similar to VA on the matter. DC may or may not have any laws on brandishing weapons, but in the commonwealth "brandishing" is categorized with "pointing" or "holding", and if he were not a LEO he would have faced charges on brandishing for unholstering and holding his firearm 1) in a public place to reasonably induce fear 2) in an incident that was not life threatening.

    But since he was a LEO there will probably be an "investigation" and it will find that the detective did nothing wrong. They have to take care of their own, of course.

  • Medic001||

    I have to agree, while I found the protesters more annoying then a cop holding a gun at his hip.

  • Voton||

    Hmmm...stupid angry black man waving his dick at a bunch of trust-fund hipsters...I'd say they're about equally annoying.

  • Kant feel Pietzsche||

    Whoops, my bad...that was the walkie-talkie.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Oops, sorry, I missed before that you pointed that out here.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Perhaps that's not grounds for drawing a firearm, but let's not make this into a "cop terrorizes innocent citizens" story, cause it's not.

    Well, if it is not grounds for drawing a firearm, then this IS a "cop terrorizes innocent citizens" story."

    By default.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    No, no it's not.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    I know you're a guy who can handle a lot of complexity, so I don't know why you are going with the whole stark dichotomy angle here, NM.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Art, what were the grounds for drawing a weapon capable of making holes in people versus the "weapons" wielded by the civilians?

  • Neu Mejican||

    ART-POG.
    Mainly because I don't see his actions as justified.

    Were the snowballers wrong to throw snowballs at cars? Sure.

    Was there any reason to draw a gun?
    Nope.

    Is a gun ever the right response to a snowball? - I guess we could spin a scenario where it might be, but this one wasn't even close.

    I guess we can also spin a scenario where this off-duty cop would have been justified in trying to control a crowd that was behaving badly.

    Again, this doesn't seem to be an incident that meets that test.

  • Suki||

    The cop does look like Darth Vader. That is scary even without the pulse cannon.

  • ||

    Here we go with NM's semantics arguments. Next he'll write that because this was a "snowball" fight, there was no danger of there being ice pellets in the snowballs (since then they would not be "snow" balls).

  • Neu Mejican||

    Tulpa,

    Your lack of self-reflection is impressive.

  • ||

    I'm not feeling the outrage over this. Bunch of assholes targeting Hummers to throw snowballs at, with the possibility of damaging those vehicles. Single cop gets out to put a stop to this, faces an unruly crowd, feels threatened, unholsters gun but doesn't point it at anyone ...

    If a private citizen were allowed to carry a gun in DC, I wouldn't have a huge problem with the same action. Maybe a bit of an over-reaction by the cop, but not a Radley Balko obvious abuse of authority kine deal.

  • Suki||

    Just a guess. That crowd is probably not all about gun owner rights either.

  • ||

    Oh my God, a reasonable person. I might faint.

  • Mary Stack||

    Don't faint(I am enjoying this fight)

  • ||

    There's no fainting in snowball !!

  • ||

    I'm not feeling the outrage over this. Bunch of assholes targeting Hummers to throw snowballs at, with the possibility of damaging those vehicles. Single cop gets out to put a stop to this, faces an unruly crowd, feels threatened, unholsters gun but doesn't point it at anyone ...

    If a private citizen were allowed to carry a gun in DC, I wouldn't have a huge problem with the same action. Maybe a bit of an over-reaction by the cop, but not a Radley Balko obvious abuse of authority kine deal.

  • IceTrey||

    First he should have shown his badge and made it clear he was a cop.Second he shouldn't have gotten out and faced an unruly crowd alone. If he had a problem he should have driven off called for backup and then confronted the snowball throwers. That's the way a professional does it. An asshole jumps out starts yelling and then pulls his gun.

  • Voton||

    ...and looks like a complete pussy. Either shoot somebody, or get back in your car and leave. Shit or get off the pot, officer.

  • ||

    Exactly. It should disturb people that an armed LEO can't keep his head in what is a very ordinary situation.

  • ||

    Both prolefeed and I have said an ordinary citizen would have been justified doing the same thing. so there was no need for him to identify himself as a cop.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Right. Because cops are better than ordinary citizens.

  • Snowball/thread ref||

    Touche

  • IceTrey||

    Well, you're a moron and don't know what the hell you're talking about so stfu.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Word. That's pretty much how I feel.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    To clarify, I agree with both prolefeed and IceTrey.

  • ||

    +1

  • Snowball/thread ref||

    To CLARIFY, I don't care who you agree with. This is not time-out,get back to the fight.

  • ||

    What's a cop driving a Hummer for?

    Seems like snowstorms bring out the DC residents......

  • ||

    Didn't the Boston Massacre start this way?

  • ||

    I don't get it. Why didn't the cop just chop off their feet?

  • Jerry||

    So a bunch of teabaggers and snowballers walk into a bar...

  • ||

    ...that's a good one.

  • Suki||

    LOL

  • Medic001||

    That great thing about youtube. and the internet. It forces COPS to take notice and stop, think and say..."oh shit...they've got a camera"

  • ||

    What a complete jackass!! Isn't a so-called officer of the law supposed to be somewhat selective about when to brandish a weapon? Was the idiot going to "protect" himself or another citizen? If this guy goes unpunished then we need to be very afraid of the people we pay to "protect and serve" us. This pimping, power-tripping-moron should never be allowed to carry a gun again! Aren't "trained" police supposed to be able to diffuse a snowball fight with a bit more level-headedness?? I am just amazed at that video!

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Whatever you think about that situation, I'm shocked that anyone would find the video "amazing."

  • ||

    This is just another example of why I laugh out loud when anti-gunners shriek that only cops should have guns, because they're so highly trained and professional.

  • Suki||

    Mentioned earlier. He was confronting a group that probably believes that too.

  • ||

    Maybe it's just because I grew up in the Midwest and hence don't pay attention if my car is hit by a snowball, but it's just bizarre that people are talking about "violation of property rights" and such. Christ on a crutch, when did people get to be such pussies about such ordinary things?

    So, if this is a "violation of property rights" then anybody whose car is hit by a snowball should respond with force?

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    I blame the high unemployment rate for the large amount of grown-ass people having a snow-ball fight in a public space.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    And while I agree that the cop never should've unholstered his weapon, the fact remains that if you're going to pelt a stranger with a snowball, you should be prepared for a possible beatdown of your person.

  • ||

    I guess I just grew up in another time and place. The only folks one didn't throw snowballs at back in my day were the elderly, pregnant women, and other obviously infirm folk. Nobody else took unusual umbrage at such things.

    Shit, nowadays you have to be prepared for a possible beatdown of your person if you say "good morning".

  • ambiguity fetishist||

    back in my day were the elderly, pregnant women

    What day was that?

  • Suki||

    Back when pregnant men were fair game?

  • Pope Jimbo||

    I agree. I don't see how throwing a snowball at a car is a violation of property rights. It would be one thing if you were denting cars, but you have to really throw a snowball to dent a car (and you need the right kind of snow).

    We didn't throw snowballs at the elderly, instead we would wait until one would come up to a stop sign then as they creeped out, one of us would kick the side of the car and another would flop down in the snow in front of them.

    Then as the geezer came out of his car completely believing they had run over a kid we would run off laughing. I can't believe now, that none of them had heart attacks.

    Of course, the bright side of the equation is that none of them ever just drove off.

  • alan||

    And while I agree that the cop never should've unholstered his weapon, the fact remains that if you're going to pelt a stranger with a snowball, you should be prepared for a possible beatdown of your person.

    Nailed it. Strangers have a funny way of never being very predictable.

  • ||

    Of course, at 14th and U, unemployment is not exactly sporadic.

  • Pope Jimbo||

    I should also point out, that the cop should have just grabbed the mouthiest hippie and rubbed his face in the snow. Then gotten back into his car and driven on.

    According to the ethos of my punk friends and I, that would have been acceptable. Of course we wouldn't have stood around waiting for the aggrieved party to get within snatching distance.

  • ||

    It's a social/cultural thing. There are plenty of things one can do that are not harmful to a car that you would never consider consistent with property rights. You would not approve of people spitting or pissing on a car, I trust, even though neither of those can actually damage a car.

    IMHO, you should err on the side of NOT throwing stuff at other people's property without consent.

  • ||

    First Post.

    I am moving back to the DC area after an extended stay in Asia and loath running into these over privileged, hippy, snots.

    I also agree with the posters that both parties were wrong.

    Having lived in Bangkok and being a veteran of a few Songkrons (Water festival). I can say water and snow can be dangerous to moving vehicles. I have had water thrown on me while riding pillion on motorcycles and while being a passenger in taxis. Thankfully I was not hurt but every year hundreds die due to this kind of reckless behavior.

    It is not so much about damage to the vehicle but to disrupting visibility and shocking the driver. Not a good combination for safe driving.

    The cop was wrong and the gun should have never left the holster.

    The people involved were assholes who had no concern for other not involved in their mischief. They also displayed an attitude of total distain for the rights of others not to be involved.

    Fuck them, I am sure we can all remember and incident or two of cracked teeth, black eyes, and other injuries due to innocent snowball fights.

    Thankfully my parents taught me better then to trow ANYTHING at a moving car.

    I would hope no one gets shot but those kids who hit him in the head with a snowball deserve a good ass kicking.

  • anarch||

    I'm with Muay on this.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Likewise.

  • Suki||

    Me too.

  • ||

    And if the cop had beaten up the guy(s) who threw snow at his head, Reason would be posting the video of that and complaining about police brutality.

    I also scratch my head at the idea that beating the shit out of a person would be an OK reaction, but drawing a pistol and pointing it at the ground was going too far.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    That WOULD be police brutality. Throwing snowballs vs. beating up someone does not = proportional force.

    Now, if they'd been throwing ROCKS... by all means, beat the crap out of them. That *is* proportional force, or pretty close to same.

  • JB||

    So if I spit on your mother, the appropriate response is?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Go for it, if that's what turns you on.

    I'll Mapquest the graveyard for you, if you like. She's been there about twenty years now.

  • JB||

    So if I spit on you?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Wow, you're really hung up on this, huh.

  • JB||

    You really like avoiding my question, huh.

    Spit does a lot less harm than snow.

  • ||

    Because at least it would have been an EVEN action..1 on 1... NOT 17 rounds of lead vs. snowballs... And I carry a gun, and I am NOT a cop!! My permit does NOT allow me to "brandish" as the cop did...
    I'd be ARRESTED for that!! In other words, if I pull, i'm going to shoot! THAT is the CCW law here in Missouri...

  • ||

    Thank God for hand held cameras.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    At one point the Detective Hummer commanded citizens to "throw another snowball". Seems like mixed signals.

  • George Bush||

    As in "Bring 'em on!"

  • mike||

    Only in dc would a bunch of niggers think its ok to throw snowballs at passing cars

  • ||

    to clarify a bit: The snowball fight was essentially a flashmob event organized on the DCist website. I almost went, but my ex girlfriend and I flipped a coin and decided to stay in and read John Grisham short stories to each other. She used to be a libertarian, and in fact, introduced me to libertarianism about 10 years ago...

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    but my ex girlfriend and I flipped a coin and decided to stay in and read John Grisham short stories to each other

    What the-?

  • ||

    totally worth it. sometimes, the charm of snow is the inverse space it creates.

    afterthought: I normally don't like john grisham. He should stick to writing short stories.

  • Suki||

    I remember that site I think. Aren't they pro gun-owner?

  • JB||

  • Suki||

    Nice article. Added to my blog and spammed my facebook friends with it.

  • .||

    She used to be a libertarian

    Having children will do that to a woman.
    They're slaves to their endocrine systems.

  • alan||

    decided to stay in and read John Grisham short stories to each other.

    Try melting candle wax on each others bellies or eating Key West Lime pies out of each others asses, anything but -- wow, Jesus Christ its a shame your not a personal friend of mine, I could really help you here, turn your life around from this path you have taken. Grisham short stories READ to one another!
    Too freaky.

  • Perry||

    This would not be much of a story -- or even much of an incident -- if the cop hadn't drawn his gun. Period.

    If he had wanted to enforce the law about throwing things at vehicles, he had many choices about how to do that. He went for the bazooka approach before trying any other. Very, very bad decision.

  • JohnD||

    in reading some of these comments, I am reminded once more why nobody takes Libertarians seriously.

  • ||

    nobody should be taken seriously. the problem is not that libertarians aren't taken seriously, it's that the left/right spectrum is.

  • Right. Bring on the clowns:||

    John Stuart Mill, Herbert Spencer, Jean-Marie Guyau, Alfred Jules Émile Fouillée, Multatuli, Richard Wagner, Friedrich Nietzsche, Ralph Waldo Emerson, William Lloyd Garrison and Henry David Thoreau...

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Way too many of those people went by 3+ names.

  • Right. Bring on the clowns:||

    Yours does too. ;-)

  • Suki||

    Everybody knows that mononameonic beings are superior.

  • Rich||

    Don't we have enough words ending in "ist" without having to invent new ones?

    ISTIST!

  • Suki||

    That's what I was trying to think of way up there. Well played ;)

  • Colin||

    When communism fell in Eastern Europe, Vaclav Havel said that he hoped that it was the end of the isms.

    Didn't happen.

  • ||

    I am surprised by the severity of the comments on this thread. it was a SNOWBALL FIGHT. Sure, some of the people there were anarchist types who wanted to turn the thing into a "protest", but that was not the intention of the organizers or of likely most of the people who showed up. The cop was wrong (and should be punished and retrained) for pulling out the gun. DC's draconian gun laws notwithstanding, an ordinary citizen doing the same thing (especially coming out of a "high status" car like a Hummer)would definitively have been arrested, and rightly pilloried in the media. as one previous commenter noted, this is why the accessibility of recording equipment to the masses is an important tool of democracy. if this was back in the '60s, who knows what the cop might have done.

  • JB||

    I don't think many people are defending the cop; he definitely overreacted.

    However, the people throwing objects at him were in the wrong. Or do you think it's ok to spit at you?

  • ||

    It's all about cultural context.

    Spitting at somebody is totally okay at a punk rock concert. At CBGB's, it was sometimes considered a form of applause.

    Snowball "fights" during blizzards are a time-honored tradition, and whipping a snowball at somebody is considered harmless fun, even if they don't expect it.

    The ONLY appropriate responses to getting hit by a snowball are 1) Ask nicely that they stop, or 2) return fire with snowballs of your own.

  • @ A.M>||

    I am surprised by the severity of your comment. It's a THREAD.

  • Colin||

    SNOWBALLGATE!

    Happiness is a warm gun . . .

  • ||

    Wow.

  • ||

    "it was a SNOWBALL FIGHT"

    No. It was not. It was a bunch of spoiled parasites throwing snowballs at passing motorists.

    I wish the COP has brought an Uzi and mowed down all the hooligans. Fricken parasitic scum.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Death Wish fan?

  • ||

    No, I just know how it is with these spoiled brats. Some poor lady loses control on the ice and wrecks and they'll all be: "oh we didn't know that would happen, we didn't mean for anyone to get hurt". Weasels.

  • ||

    On second thought:

    the cop, being "distracted" by the snowball pelting, should have "lost control" of his hummer and plowed into the crowd of instigating parasites.

  • ||

    the cop, being "distracted" by the snowball pelting, should have "lost control" of his hummer and plowed into the crowd of instigating parasites.

    If that had happened, and the cop had consequently been dragged from his car, beaten senseless and hung from a lamppost by an outraged mob, you'd be shocked.

  • ||

    Outrage from the mob that caused it? Hysterical.

    I wouldn't be shocked. I would expect the perps to spend the rest of their lives in jail.

  • ||

    I spent my high-school years in snowy upstate New York, and participated in such depraved hooliganism many times.

    Guess what; anything other than rolling down your window and yelling "ASSHOLES!!!" is overreacting.

  • ||

    How about you not throw stuff at moving cars on ice? Reasonable?

    Because I would have just shot you.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Yeah, use disproportionate force. That's the way to keep order and uphold ones' Constitutional duty.

    Some guy walked past my house and let his dog whiz by my mailbox. Should I shoot him next time he does this?

  • ||

    Fuck yeah

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    According to The Law of Fen, shooting people is pretty much the way to deal with every incident, apparently...

  • ||

    Its the duct tape of social interaction.

  • Barack Obama||

    I plan on using that kind of duct tape pretty soon...

  • Byron||

    No, you must use only the level of force law enforcement would. You should shoot his dog.

  • Spartacus||

    The last time I was in DC, it was January and it snowed. Traffic was totally gridlocked, moving 10 mph at best. I don't see how getting hit with a snowball could cause a major accident. On the other hand, anyone has a right to not having his private property pelted with snowballs, whether intentional or dangerous or not. Bottom line is, the snowball-throwers should have apologized, car owner (cop or no cop) should have said No harm, no foul (WITHOUT gun drawn), and everybody moves on. Of course, this requires both sides being thoughtful and reasonable, which has a negligible chance of actually happening.

    PS--when I was a kid in Florida, it was popular to throw oranges at cars. Now that's dangerous! For everybody. I got shot at once.

  • ||

    "no foul (WITHOUT gun drawn)"

    Unruly mob throwing objects at passing motorists. He didn't aim his weapon, just readied it. I'm sure thats policy for any PD while waiting for backup.

  • FredM||

    For a police officer to pull his weapon, he is required to be or believe he is in imminent danger.

    A snowball fight does not qualify. His badge should have been sufficient. Pulling his weapon was way over the line of proper police behavior.

  • ||

    As soon as he got out of the car (before he drew the gun), he was pelted with snowballs. So it wasn't just his car that got hit.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    In a simpler time, the cop would've started flinging snowballs back at them.

    Today, though, he'd be a target of lawsuits and internal-affairs investigations.

  • anarch||

    Lawsuits are the new snowballs-thrown-at-strangers.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    We can thank liberals for our overly-litigious society. Gosh, where would we be without them?

  • FredM||

    Really? 'Cause we don't see that in this video.

    Even still, the officer pulled his WEAPON to face people throwing snowballs in a snowball fight.

    Were their actions correct or even legal? No, they were throwing snowballs at passing motor vehicles. Were the police officer's actions correct? No, he PULLED A FIREARM on UNARMED citizens.

    Blame to go around, but the police officer should lose his shield.

  • ||

    Lose his shield.... ehh a bit much. but he should be reprimanded and kept behind a desk for a month. maybe read a few books on Kent State...

  • ||

    I disagree. If he was a private citizen, he certainly would have been arrested and jailed for what he did... Assuming one of the uniformed police wouldn't just shoot him out of panic when arriving at the scene.

    Losing his job is more than fair under the circumstances.

  • ||

    The video doesn't start until the incident is already underway. One of the eyewitness accounts (from one of the snowballers) Jesse linked to in the post below this one clearly states that the officer drew his weapon only after he himself was hit by snowballs.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Which was an inappropriate response.

    If kids toilet-paper your trees, do you threaten to harm them in return?

    Proportional response is a good thing. This wasn't proportional.

  • ||

    My dad coached girls' high school sports in Minnesota when I was a kid. At the end of the season, they would always want to come by to "TP" the trees in our yard. He knew it was coming, so he would have my brother and I stay awake and hide in the bushes with the garden hose at the ready, to get them soaking wet on a cold November night. Good times, good times.

  • JB||

    "I don't see how getting hit with a snowball could cause a major accident."

    I saw a taxi with passengers struggling to get up a hill on Friday. Meanwhile I kept hearing these loud plunking noises. I thought it was snow or ice coming from the large building near the cab until I realized it was idiots throwing snow at the cab.

    The driver is busy trying to navigate the hill and he is hearing these very loud noises and could easily assume it was ice from the tall building and dangerous to him and his passengers.

    I should have said something to those morons, but it was cold and I was focused on getting home.

  • SarahM||

    I am filing a Citizen Complaint to the DC police about Detective Baylor, and I encourage you to do the same: http://mpdc.dc.gov/mpdc/cwp/vi.....3,mpdcNav,|.asp

    Why? Because this is not the kind of person I want serving me and my community. He threatened and scared people and acted in a dangerous manner.

    Here is my eye-witness account and details: http://ownthepress.com/

  • ||

    "some activist friends showed up with a freshly-painted “no war but snowball war” banner"

    Your "eye-witness" account claims you are an experienced peace activist. Did you or your "friends" have a permit to protest? If not, then all of your were gathering illegally.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Requiring permits isn't exactly freedom-oriented.

  • ||

    If a protest is going to be large enough to disrupt traffic, damage or restrict the access of other citizens to public property such as parks, I don't see a problem with requiring a permit. Obviously permits should be issued without regard to the political bent of the protesters.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Assuming said permits WOULDN'T be issued without said regard... do you really trust government that much, Tulpa?

  • ||

    If I don't want to deal with 1000 people milling around on the street that I have to drive on to get to work every day, I don't really have a choice.

    And it's not really a matter of trust. If a group is denied a permit they can sue and/or criticize the govt that refused the permit.

  • ||

    "Yes, i'd like the form to get a permit to criticize the gov't for requiring me to have a permit to peaceably assemble. Thank You."

  • ||

    I never said you have to have a permit to criticize, just to hold large gatherings.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Tulpa, if you're such a libertarian, why do you want people to have to get permission to gather? That's not in the Constitution I have handy - and I have the Cato pocket version, so I know it's word-for-word true to the original.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Wow. I spent the day doing stuff...and this grew to 600+ comments. And, what 300 of them are Tulpa. And now there is this gem. I am more of a libertarian than Tulpa.

    It's like he saw Brazil and thought "that's how to run a city."

  • Neu Mejican||

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7xNnRBksvOU

  • ||

    If 300 of the comments were mine, that would be roughly one out of every two comments in the thread. There are three instances where I have two comments in a row, and several long stretches where none of the comments are mine.

    Looks like you learned math at the same place you learned logic.

  • Neu Mejican||

    65, 300, whatever. Sarcasm is hard to convey on the internet.

  • FredM||

    Permit to protest? What happened to the "right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for redress of grievances"?

    I would say this wasn't *exactly* a peaceful protest, requiring permits to protest goes against both the spirit and letter of the First Amendment.

    Further, the poster is right when they say that Detective Baylor is not suited to serve on the DC police force. There was no need to flash his gun. His badge was sufficient, and the situation probably would not have escalated if he'd just flashed his shield and said, "Look, you can have your fun, just head to a park or something and stop throwing snowballs at passing cars."

  • ||

    I don't agree with DC law, but there it is. You have to have a permit for a political protest.

    And I love the way Sarah lowballs it: "yah we all got together to play, and, what a surprise! a few of our activist friends showed up with signs."

    Try harder baby.

    Its pretty obvious what happened. You guys decided to fuck with one guy for owning a "carbon-spewing" SUV, turned out to be a cop, and you're whining about your civil rights.

  • ||

    The rights recognized by the first amendment are not intended to be completely unrestricted. For instance, the freedom of speech does not protect fraud, slander, libel, or threats, even though these are speech. The government has legitimate interests in keeping public thoroughfares clear for traffic and maintaining access for the general public to public property such as parks, and the right to assembly must be balanced against these.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Tulpa,

    You sound like a Democrat what with your balancing of rights and all.

  • ||

    It's called being a realist. Shouldn't you be out there protesting the criminalization of fraud, slander, threats, and libel? Those things are speech, right? Aren't they protected by the First Amendment?

  • Neu Mejican||

    Tulpa,

    "The enemies must know that the protests, which are caricature of the pre-revolutionary ones, cannot undermine the system.", Ali Khamenei, August 2009

    "The head of the parliament's judiciary, Ali Shahrokhi, told the conservative Fars News agency that the situation is ripe for legal action against Mr. Mousavi. "The illegal protests and Mousavi's provocative statements are the source of the recent chaos. This is against the law," said Mr. Shahrokhi, a conservative cleric and parliament member."

    Really, the idea of issuing a permit to dissent is just, well, silly. Not realistic, silly.

  • JB||

    I also don't want smug hippies living in my community who think it is their right to assault people.

    Can you get you and your smelly friends to move? Preferably the bottom of the ocean with Spongebob.

  • ||

    "UNROOOLY MAAAAAAHHHBZ!!!111!"

    GAAAAAAH!

    Get a fucking grip.

  • ||

    Go pond sand up your ass.

    And stop throwing stuff a cars. What, are you 12?

  • Warren Fahy||

    Just because they have certain clothing and weaponry does not mean they can simply apply force to other people who do not have the same clothing and weaponry. In fact, it means they actually have LESS social leeway than everyone else has and can only act in clear retaliation and NEVER be initiators of violence against the citizens they are sworn to protect. What in hell is going on here?

  • ||

    "Just because they have certain clothing and weaponry does not mean they can simply apply force to other people"

    Apply force? Like throwing things at passing cars?

  • Warren Fahy||

    Snowballs?

  • FredM||

    Ever seen what hail does to a car? A snowball (especially a slush-ball like you'd find on concrete sidewalks) can do a lot of damage to windows and side-panels. I know, because as a 12 year old, I had to pay for the repairs.

  • JB||

    I could probably kill you with a ball of water.

  • ||

    Because I would have just shot you.

    Why am I not surprised by this IntarNetzTuffGai(TM) chest thumping?

  • ||

    Because you're a little metrosexual bitch.

  • anarch||

    *Sigh.* This was going so well, I was so proud of our civilit- *SPLAT!*

  • Snowball/thread ref||

    anarch, civility is overrated. What's next? Robert's Rules of Order

  • Warren Fahy||

    There is a fundamental disaster in the making if this is the ethos of those we entrust with badges and guns.

  • ||

    fundamental disaster? That PD policy when dealing with unruly mob is to ready your weapon while waiting for backup?

  • Warren Fahy||

    Lock and load. We might as well emply robots.

  • ||

    I think robot police would actually be an improvement.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    You'd just shoot them. Shows how much you care about proportional response and liberty.

    What would be your idea of a penalty for failing to remove garage-sale signs in a timely fashion? I shudder to think what you'll say about that.

  • ||

    "Shows how much you care about proportional response and liberty"

    Your the one who's got his panties in a wad because the cop merely readied his weapon.

  • FredM||

    Pulling your weapon requires that you feel you are in imminent danger. No one was brandishing a weapon, it was just a bunch of people throwing snowballs.

    Badge to take control. Weapon if in danger. Anything else is an overreaction.

  • ||

    So you would walk up and engage a mob without control of your weapon.

    You play a cop on TV right?

  • FredM||

    I am in control of my weapon when it is on my person or locked in a secure location I have designated.

    If I draw my weapon in a situation where there is no threat of injury or death, then I am no longer in control of myself, and as such said weapon is no longer in control.

    No, I would not have approached the mob with my weapon drawn. Were I a police officer, my badge would be in the air for all to see, and I would be shouting an order to disperse.

    Lethal force, in the form of a drawn weapon, requires the officer or the people around him be in imminent danger. Snowballs do not qualify as "imminent danger."

    I sincerely hope you are not a police officer. You are dangerous.

  • Snowball/thread ref||

    FredM, "Were I a police officer" come on,you are a real cop. Fess up because this thread is getting dull!

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Notice how he uses the qualifier "merely"... future police-state supporter, he is.

  • Warren Fahy||

    The problem is the escalation of martial tactics where they are obviously unnecessary.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I made that point in the other thread, but it wasn't well-received in this one.

  • JB||

    Don't disagree with that.

  • ||

    While I certainly think that the officer was out of line, none of the comments posted by anyone (that I've seen) holds these young 20-30 somethings responsible for their actions. If I'm driving through crap like this, already white knuckling it, the last thing I need is for anyone to be throwing snowballs at my car. I certainly would be pissed off at someone who did this to me. This is something that kids do, not supposedly responsible young adults. And then the dips throw a snowball at the cop? A core Libertarian principle is that you can do what you want so long as what you're doing as you're not bothering someone else. This does not seem to pass that test. If you want to have a snowball fight, do it amongst yourselves and leave 2 ton moving vehicles out of it.

  • ||

    For the record, a lot of people in this thread (and the one below) have taken a similar position.

  • ||

    As I'd said, "that I've seen." After having gone through the voluminous posts, I did find many in agreement, thankfully.

  • ||

    Detective Baylor, I have one word for you "Paxil". Chill man, it was a freakin' snowball.

  • ||

    Are you trying to turn him into a Reaver?

  • JB||

    hehe

  • bj||

    The area, the snow, the crowd, snowballs at a vehicle in already bad driving conditions...what part of stupidity does this not cover...the crowd was doing something illegal, throwing the snowballs at vehicles which could have caused a accident or damage to someone's vehicle who actually works to pay for his car. Take the snowballs to a park and throw to your heart's content. He didn't know what he'd find in the group in that location, and in fact I'm sure there was more than one gun there!

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    But even in the park setting, someone might get hit by accident. Best to have everyone wear protective goggles and sign legal documents absolving all participants for potential damages, maybe hire some off-duty OSHA reps to make sure it's as dull of a snowball fight as possible...

  • ||

    Again you confuse intentional acts with unintentional ones. Don't make me unholster more bestiality put-downs.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I would like an apology on that, Tulpa.

    People have been either arrested, or threatened with same, for accidentally hitting a cop. Unintentional, same result. You okay with that?

  • ||

    I'd like an apology for you being intentionally obtuse on these threads too, but seeing as how neither of us is going to apologize, it seems that sucking up and dealing would be in order.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I didn't insult you, Tulpa. You and I are pretty much on the same team, but you decided to go dirty for no good reason.

  • Snowball/thread ref||

    Tulpa & The Libertarian Guy, wtf, are you going to kiss and make up? Get back to the fight.

  • FredM||

    Let's face it: These people (appearing to be mostly high school and college aged) were throwing snowballs at passing cars. That's illegal.

    The cop WAY overreacted by brandishing his weapon and should lose his shield for that.

    The kids shouting "F*ck you pig!" were not helping the situation in the slightest.

    Blame to go around on this one. Just about everybody involved was, well, friggin' stupid.

    And actually, the restraint of the cops who showed up on the scene later, after snowballs continued to fly and the taunts and other shouts by the crowd, was pretty commendable.

    Det. Baylor should lose his shield. We'll never know who threw the first snowball at his hummer; that kid should have a misdemeanor conviction on his record but unfortunately won't.

  • ||

    Where do you see him "brandish" his weapon?

    I see him ready his weapon, but not point it at anyone [you may be mistaking the walkie in his other hand for the gun]

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    He shouldn't have drawn it at all. But you'd just shoot 'em, so why do you care?

  • ||

    Oh, so you're in charge of Dept Policy now eh?

    You think a cop should walk up to an unruly mob without control of his weapon.

    Why don't you just stfu and go back to your weed?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I don't smoke weed, but thanks for advancing a tired old stereotype.

    If you'd like, I could mail you a urine sample, but I'd insist that you do a taste test on it first.

  • FredM||

    Are YOU in charge of police department policy? If you are, you probably shouldn't be on this thread. Could look bad in court.

    I think that a cop who is facing a group of people throwing snowballs at cars should first attempt to control the situation with his BADGE, and only draw his weapon if he believes there is imminent danger of SAFETY or LIFE to himself or others. That is the only lawful time ANYONE, law enforcement included, can draw and brandish their weapon in the company of others when not on a designated shooting range.

  • ||

    How about not walking up to an unruly mob at all? Even if he had been ready to unload his firearn into the crowd, he is completely ignoring any type of officer safety. A tactically wise officer would have continued around the corner, then radioed for help. Any officer who walks alone with his weapon drawn into a "mob" is risking his life, the lives of bystanders, and the lives of other officers who may have to come and protect him if the "mob" turns violent. So even if you believe that the unruly mob deserves to be shot, Fen, the officer is being tactically stupid from an officer safety standpoint. Police officers would even consider this guy an idiot for confronting a "dangerous mob." I don't think this mob was dangerous, but even if you stipulate to your "dangerous mob" scenario, the officer was still endangering lives.

  • FredM||

    If your weapon is not in its holster but in your hand, you are brandishing it.

    Were I to walk around the streets of my town with a firearm in my hand, hand around the grip and finger on the trigger guard, I would be arrested for brandishing. My weapon is "ready" when I click off the safety.

    Learn your terminology before discussing firearms, bub. A drawn weapon is being "brandished."

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Pointless to argue with Fen, Fred. He's obviously going to side with the government when martial law comes to America.

  • ||

    Yah, you're a fricken idiot.

    My oath is to the Constitution. But that doesn't mean I'll enable the brats that abuse Liberty.

  • FredM||

    If your oath is to the Constitution, then you have to accept that said Constitution requires that the government and its actors (in this case, a police officer) are not above the law. This officer did something that would have gotten a private citizen arrested. He acted outside the law and outside the proper actions of a law enforcement officer.

    Lethal force is only authorized when safety and/or lives are in danger. Snowballs do not qualify.

  • ||

    "He acted outside the law. This officer did something that would have gotten a private citizen arrested."

    You're saying he did something that would be illegal if he wasn't law enforcement. And that somehow thats a violation of the Consitution... you don't smoke weed? Really?

    Again, please specify the "illegal" action and back it up with the relevant code.

    Be sure to include the part that presumes guilt based on an edited youtube clip.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Fen, does everyone who disagrees with you "smoke weed"? Are you THAT paranoid?

  • ||

    His logic is circular, hence the question that he's high on something.

    Don't try to follow it, you'll just throw yourself out.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Got proof he's "on something"? Because in your mind, that's grounds to just pull your gun and drop his ass right there, no?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Right... you'd just shoot 'em.

    You don't know what liberty is, if you have that kind of mentality.

  • ||

    I think your using the legal tech definition, not the standard one:

    "to shake or wave, as a weapon; flourish"

    Whatever, my point is that he was not pointing his weapon at the crowd, as others have said.

  • FredM||

    Laws are written on legal definitions. And this officer was out of line. He was not in danger, so his weapon should have stayed in its holster.

    Period.

  • ||

    And now you're the arbiter of who's in danger. Even though you weren't even there. Admit it, you don't know what happened before the video, and you don't know what the detectives perspective of the sit was. You're just talking out of your ass - calling for someone's badge because you saw it on youtube.

  • FredM||

    Were you there? If so, show up at the police station and give your story.

    As of now, the story is that a police officer pulled his weapon on an UNARMED group of people because they happened to throw a snowball at his car.

    That is an abuse of authority and improper use of lethal force. Had he actually fired his weapon, any second-year law student could have won the wrongful death lawsuit.

    The threat of lethal force, in the form of a drawn weapon, requires that the police officer fear for the safety of himself and/or the people in the area.

    This wasn't a WTO or IMF protest. This wasn't a group of people carrying signs and throwing Molotov's Cocktails. This was a snowball fight. The officer overreacted and *probably* violated the law by pulling his weapon.

    Your equivocating and morally comparing a snowball fight to violent protests speaks to a very unbalanced sense of logic and a potentially dangerous individual if ever faced with a mildly threatening situation.

  • ||

    "This was a snowball fight"

    Again, NO. It was people throwing snowballs at passing motorists.

    Still waiting for you to specify the "illegal" action of cop and back it up with the relevant code.

    Be sure to include the part that presumes guilt based on an edited youtube clip.

  • FredM||

    It is illegal for a private citizen to carry his weapon in the City of Washington, District of Columbia. It is further illegal for said citizen to brandish said weapon if their life or safety is not in danger.

    This police officer's life and personal safety were not in danger. There is no evidence any snowball was thrown at him.

    His weapon was drawn yet his badge was not properly displayed.

    Again, were I to do this, the uniformed police officers would have been within their rights to arrest me.

    His later taunting of the crowd proves he was not in control of himself and seeking a confrontation.

    His actions were illegal. No, I cannot cite the code, but I don't have to do that to know his actions were illegal, since I know what the effects of the laws of the District of Columbia are.

  • ||

    You might have heard of this Heller thing that happened last year. ie, it is not illegal to carry a firearm if you have a weapons permit.

  • ||

    "His actions were illegal. No, I cannot cite the code"

    Of course you can't. Guess why.

  • ||

    "the story is that a police officer pulled his weapon on an UNARMED group of people because"

    He readied his weapon, he did not "pull it on them". Hyperbole on your part. Again.

    "on an UNARMED group of people"

    Right, because cops just assume mobs are unarmed right? Its not like they have a family back home that depends on them staying alive. You want his badge because he took a reasonable precaution.

    BTW, how do you KNOW they were unarmed? Do you "see" it from you pot-induced haze? You're the guy in the bar that always tell us what Snyder should have done, on Monday morning.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Why do you care? You'd just shoot 'em, quote unquote.

  • FredM||

    Yes, unarmed. If no weapon was displayed by any member of the crowd, then under the law they are not armed.

    If I pull my weapon on someone who has not displayed a weapon, I go to jail. I go directly to jail. I do not pass go and I certainly do not collect $200.

    I do not "know" they were unarmed. It's possible every one of them was. However, no weapons were displayed. If he felt that the crowd might have been armed with lethal weapons, his responsible action would have been to take cover and begin forming a perimeter, not to walk in front of cover, brandish his firearm, and taunt the crowd and angrily ask for another snowball to be thrown at him.

    As for my "pot-induced" haze, you have just proven yourself a complete jackass. I have never so much as had a beer, let alone done drugs. I think I may have smoked 20 cigars in my time, and only on special occasions.

    Your ad-hominem attacks merely prove that you have no facts or logic to back up your argument and must resort name-calling and attacking the character of those who disagree with you. It might work for 12 year olds an in political campaign ads, but I am not so easily disturbed.

  • ||

    Damn man!! you LIVE to argue don't you!!! Don't know DC law, but in MISSOURI, if it's in your hand as you approach someone, THAT is "Brandishing"... Give you an example. I'm walking down a city street, and 3 tough looking guys are headed my way..it's late, street deserted, an I got a bad feeling, so I pull and hold my gun downwards at my side as they get closer. They give me a wide berth, pass by and go around the corner, where they see Joe Cop.They tell him what they saw, and Joe cop arrests me for BRANDISHING! That's the law... now if they had a gun, knife, or made a "threatening comment or move"?? I'm good to go...just "being there"??? Not good enough...

  • ||

    I meant this for FEN...

  • ||

    ""Why? Because this is not the kind of person I want serving me and my community. He threatened and scared people and acted in a dangerous manner.""

    The kind of person I want serving my community is not the kind of person that would ever enforce DC's gun laws.

    The kind of person I want serving my community is never a person that think it is ok for him to carry a gun, but not for other citizens.

  • ||

    In that case, you'd have to fire almost every cop in DC.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Just the BAD ones, Tulpa. Everywhere, not just DC.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Good point on the other cops, Fred. THEY showed restraint, and handled the situation the way it needed to be handled.

    The other cop... no.

  • ||

    My apologies to Officer Baylor on behalf of that mob. Spoiled, self-indulgent, thoughtless clods.

  • FredM||

    I agree that the mob was unruly and are probably spoiled, self-indulgent and certainly thoughtless. Their act of throwing snowballs at cars was a criminal infraction or misdemeanor. It is unfortunate we'll never know which one of them threw snowballs at cars so they can be properly punished.

    That said, the officer was out of line when he drew his weapon and should be sanctioned.

  • ||

    Oh great, now you've gone from "he should lose his shield" to "he should be sanctioned".

    All because you saw "something" on youtube.

    I hope you are judged by the same standards.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Why don't you just accuse Fred of being a pot smoker? It fits your right-wing-sounding talking points M.O., after all...

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    There were local-TV videos, as well as others shot on the scene.

    Which is what you would've done to the unruly snowball-wielding mob - shot them on the scene.

  • FredM||

    He pulled his weapon on unarmed individuals who were not a threat to his life.

    If I did this, I would go to jail.

    Because he is given a badge, he gets special treatment? NO! Because he has a badge, his responsibilities are EVEN GREATER than mine. He has training for this kind of situation that does not include pulling his LETHAL WEAPON on an unarmed crowd.

    He should feel lucky I'm ONLY asking for his badge, or at the very least sanctions.

  • JB||

    If they were throwing other objects at you, then you would be fine pulling out the gun and pointing it at the ground in most states.

    Snowballs are still assault and can be dangerous, but pulling the gun is likely an overreaction.

  • FredM||

    You pull a firearm on a crowd of people throwing snowballs and point it at the ground, then call the police.

    When they arrive with their weapons drawn and pointed at the crowd, not at you, the person armed with a lethal weapon, call me and tell me I'm wrong.

  • ||

    He didn't have the gun out when the uniformed police arrived. And this situation would arise in any situation where you successfully defended yourself with a gun and held the (disarmed) attacker until the police arrived.

  • JB||

    Did you even read what I wrote?

  • JB||

    That was addressed to FredM.

  • FredM||

    Okay, class. Let's try this again, from the beginning.

    The crowd committed a minor property crime, throwing snowballs at a car.

    The car's owner, an off-duty police officer, got out of the car, and was allegedly pelted with snowballs. This is battery. The crowd has committed two non-lethal crimes.

    The police officer steps out from behind cover (driver's side is on the far side of the vehicle) and engages the crowd, drawing his firearm. He has now engaged lethal force.

    He and the crowd taunt each other. While not crimes, this is an aggravating factor and gives us a window into the state of mind of both.

    Now, do you see where the crowd acted with lethal force or the threat of lethal force? No. You see members of the crowd committing one misdemeanor and allegedly one non-lethal felony.

    The police officer drew his lethal weapon in a situation where no lethal force was threatened or applied. His response was dis-proportional and wrong. Illegal in fact, for any citizen including the police.

    He was wrong. He broke the law. And if police procedure permits such behavior by the police, then such procedure violates both the letter and spirit of the Constitution and needs to be changed.

    These were not Molotov's Cocktails, rocks, or other dangerous objects. They were snowballs. Potentially injurious, yes, but not lethal.

    Our system of law does not excuse one wrong act because another was committed first.

  • Neu Mejican||

    I am still trying to get my head around the contention that there was enough of a threat to warrant a drawn gun.

    The crowds reaction to the drawn gun, btw, is evidence of how disproportional it was. NO ONE believed he was gonna shoot anyone over a snow ball...and they continued to pelt him. Rude on their part, sure, but give me a break.

  • ||

    "still trying to get my head around the contention that there was enough of a threat to warrant a drawn gun"

    You don't have to get your head around it.

    See, its not your place to judge whether the cop thought there was cause to ready his weapon and call for backup.

    Especially not based on something you saw on TV or Youtube

  • FredM||

    No, it is entirely the place of the citizenry in a Free Society to judge the actions of government officials, employees and enforcement professionals. Which is precisely what a police officer is.

    Were it not our place to do so, there would never have been a revolution in 1775, a declaration of independence in 1776, or a new constitution in 1787.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Careful, Fred, you'll get accused of being a weed-soaked metrosexual with wussy talk like "Constitution" and "judging actions"...

  • Neu Mejican||

    Fen,

    Fred covered the false premise in your claim, but more importantly, I don't care whether he was a cop or not...his actions wouldn't have been justified.

    When we judge the "right" someone has to defend themselves, we have to take the context into account. Subjective fear for your life can justify many actions, even when that subjective fear is baseless. But, you don't draw a gun at a snowball fight. If you do, you are outside of the bounds of acceptable behavior. If he had used the gun, he wouldn't have gotten far with a self-defense claim.

  • ||

    "you don't draw a gun at a snowball fight."

    When a Police Officer orders an unruly crowd to disperse and they refuse and become abusive, you ready your weapon and call for backup.

    And you certainly don't assume they aren't unarmed, esp when they respond the way these punks did.

    You can argue that he over-reacted. He's not perfect. And in hindsight, he prob agrees he should have handled it better.

    But demanding his badge over this is ridiculous.

  • FredM||

    "When a Police Officer orders an unruly crowd to disperse and they refuse and become abusive, you ready your weapon and call for backup."

    If that is the standard operating procedure for police departments in this nation, then we do, in fact, live in a police state.

    There was no lethal threat. Drawing a firearm is not responsible nor is it safe.

    The use of lethal force, even in the form of drawing a weapon, requires a threat of lethal force. Had someone in the crowd flashed a knife or a firearm, the officer would be justified. But no, he had a bunch of snowballs thrown at him. Not equivalent, so he was in the wrong.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    But you'd just shoot 'em, Fen. You have no moral leg to stand on here.

  • ||

    Det. Baylor has been watching too many cop shows. If this officer had reason to believe that anyone in the crowd had weapons (including kinives or truncheons, etc.) like Fen asserts that they may have had, he would never have confronted such a large group (or mob, whatever). he would have been endangering his life and the lives of others. Even if you believe that every snowballer should have been arrested and charged, the detective should be fired for careless officer safety.

  • ||

    Hey Metrosexual guy, whats wrong with being a pot smoker?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    YOU brought it up, asshole. You assume that anyone who dares defy the Laws of Fen must be partaking of weed.

    Right-wingers usually act like that, though.

  • ||

    No Metrosexual, just the ones that don't make sense or contradict themselves.

    Example: "Its unconsitutional for law enforcement to do something in the performance of his duties that would get a citizen arrested....mmmm pass the bong"

    But thank for folowing me around the thread to my bitch. I always wanted an ankle-biter as a pet.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I haven't clipped my nails in two weeks, so I hardly qualify as a "metrosexual".

    As for being your bitch... no, thanks. But aren't you guilty of solicitation at this point?

    Now, why don't you go back to FreeRepublic and your masturbatory dreams of martial law?

  • FredM||

    The only thing you have done in this thread is to prove to the world you are a sociopath. You have no more "made anyone your bitch" with your ad-hominem attacked than I have convinced you the police officer was wrong.

    Hopefully, others will see your posts and realize that your points are entirely without logic or a basic understanding of natural and/or common law and personal liberty.

    Oh, and it IS unconstitutional for a government actor to do something that a private citizen in prohibited from doing, unless the Constitution specifically grants that privilege.

    Pretty sure, "waving a firearm at an unarmed crowd" is not listed in the duties or responsibilities of government.

  • FredM||

    I'm sorry, I exaggerated: He wasn't waving. He was brandishing.

    My apologies for the error.

  • BeesInTheBrain||

    Ummm, for all of you who haven't figured this out yet, throwing things at people you don't know is an invitation to violence.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Gosh, I'd better cancel next year's 4th of July water-balloon battle, then...

  • FredM||

    Notice his qualifier: "people you don't know."

    The crowd had broken the law. The issue at hand was did this constitute an excuse for the police officer to engage with lethal force to gain control of the situation?

    My position is that no, it did not.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Agreed, Fred.

  • ||

    He didn't engage with lethal force, he readied his weapon and called for backup.

    You're stroking a strawman

  • FredM||

    A firearm is a lethal weapon. To remove it from your holster is to engage with lethal force.

    This is not "straw man." This is established legal doctrine that has put thousands of people in prison.

    Lethal force is only permissible when you believe the life or safety of yourself or the people around you are in question. This officer clearly did not. He was pissed off (and with good reason), but he was looking for a fight and exceeded his authority.

    Pulling his firearm in this situation was a crime, just as it would be if you or I had done so.

  • ||

    "A firearm is a lethal weapon. To remove it from your holster is to engage with lethal force."

    As a Marine, I'm well aware of the requirements for the use of lethal force. Readying your weapon is NOT engaing in lethal force. Quit being such a word weasel.

  • FredM||

    You are a Marine, so you are likely used to having your weapon ready in non-lethal scenarios in anticipation of them becoming lethal. That is fine--on the battlefield.

    In a civil society based upon the Rule of Law, having your weapon drawn in a confrontation is "engaging with lethal force." Had the officer merely shown his weapon, in its holster, he would have been fine. He drew it. As a Marine, you should know that you never draw your firearm unless you intend to use it. That's one of the first rules of firearms safety you *should* have been taught. If you weren't, then Marine Corps training has gone severely downhill.

    I'm not being a "word weasel." I'm taking The Law. This LEO violated The Law. He drew his weapon when faced with non-lethal force. That's a violation of The Law. He should be sanctioned.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Marine, eh?

    That explains a lot.

  • ||

    Intertubes Marine. So in reality, he plays a lot of Halo and CoD.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I should quantify my take on the Marines bit:

    I've known quite a few Marines, and 90% of them were decent folk. The ones that spoil the puddin' are the ones like Fen - they think they are The Shit, and say so on a regular basis.

    Those are the bad examples, just as there are bad examples of cops.

    Like Fen, for instance.

  • BeesInTheBrain||

    If your planning on throwing them at random strangers then it would probably be a good idea.

  • ||

    We have a winner!

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Fuck off, Fen. No room here for police-state enthusiasts.

  • ||

    When multiple people get pissed off at you enough to insult you, the problem just MIGHT not be with them.

    You're being extremely wearisome in these threads, Guy. Not saying that you can't get on my good side again with less wearisome behavior in the future, but it's a fact you should be made aware of.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Have you READ Fen's comments? And you're calling *me* wearisome?

    This whole thing got blown out of proportion because the cop drew his weapon when he didn't NEED to. Don't blame me for pointing out such trivial items of interest.

  • FredM||

    Throwing things at people you don't know is an unlawful action. It is not an invitation to the threat of lethal force.

    The police officer did not need his weapon. His badge was probably sufficient.

  • ||

    "Throwing things at people you don't know is an unlawful action. It is not an invitation to the threat of lethal force."

    Until it happens to you.

  • FredM||

    Let's say someone throws a banana cream pie at me. I pull my weapon. Have I acted properly?

    No.

    I responded to a non-lethal action with a potentially lethal action. It does not matter where my weapon is pointed. It does not matter that a battery occurred. The threat to my safety is gone, and for me to respond with potentially lethal force is ILLEGAL.

    Add the crowd of people, most of whom were NOT throwing things at me, and I have just violated the natural and constitutional rights of dozens of people.

  • ||

    What do you suggest those of us without badges do in response to this kind of unlawful action?

  • FredM||

    Since they are snowballs and not, say, rocks or pieces of wood, I'd say call the police.

    Lethal force requires the threat of potentially lethal force.

    Snowballs do not qualify.

  • ||

    What about batteries in snowballs, genious?

  • FredM||

    Who's using straw man arguments, Fen?

    There is no evidence whatsoever of batteries in any of the snowballs.

    Some members of the crowd were being stupid by throwing snowballs at cars. That does not constitute a threat to life and safety, it constitutes a minor property crime, for which a drawn firearm is both unnecessary and unlawful.

  • Then what's stupid about it?||

    Some members of the crowd were being stupid by throwing snowballs at cars. That does not constitute a threat to life and safety

  • ||

    Calling the police is not an acceptable answer for a person who believes in the right to self-defense. Especially since know the history of the DC police in responding to calls for help. Advice to call the police is advice to sit there and take abuse from attackers.

  • FredM||

    Drawing a lethal weapon is not a reasonable method of self-defense when face with something non-lethal like snowballs.

    Were I to toss paperclips at you, would you draw your weapon? I'm fairly certain you'd go to jail for that one. At least to cool off, if not face criminal charges.

    The use of lethal force requires the threat of lethal force.

    Should you be allowed to defend yourself from people throwing snowballs? Sure. I'd recommend using snowballs. It's equivalent force, and you'll probably have fun doing it. You might even use your fists, but I wouldn't recommend attacking a crowd of 200 people by yourself.

    Unless this is actually The Matrix and you're Neo, anyway.

    "Self Defense" means self-preservation. If faced with a crowd of 200 people, I'd probably choose the "flight" part of self-defense, but I'd be justified using non-lethal force against them.

    Oooh! Perfect use for the Foam Clue Bat!

  • ||

    The use of lethal force requires the threat of lethal force.

    Nonsense. If a thief grabs your briefcase and starts punching you, you're justified in drawing a gun.

    If you're a woman being attacked by a rapist, you're justified in drawing a gun.

    Neither of these involves lethal force on the part of the attacker. The point of having a gun is exactly to be able to escalate the use of force. What's the point otherwise? If you can only expose your gun if the other person uses force sufficient to kill you (as opposed to merely severely injure you, violate your orifices, and steal your property) then it's basically worthless.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    How do you compare being pelted with snow, with being raped or robbed?

  • ||

    None of them involve lethal force, which appears to be the standard you guys are latching onto as the determiner of whether drawing a gun is justified. I'm forcing you guys to draw a reasonable line around lawful conduct, as any good libertarian would expect.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    The Libertarian Purity Police standard, eh? Never seen that one before.

    Look, okay... the snowballers were in the wrong - but so was the cop. Is that good enough for you?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    BTW, Tulpa, have you read all of Fen's comments? The man is unhinged, no question.

  • FredM||

    The nonsense is the belief that punches or attempted rape do not constitute "lethal force."

    If a person is using their hands to harm me, I can have a reasonable belief they are trying to kill me. They can cause serious injury or death with punches and kicks, or can choke me to death, or commit any number of actions that might result in my death. In such a situation, it is perfectly reasonable to use my firearm to engage lethal force to protect my person from a person attacking me with their fists or feet.

    Someone throwing snowballs? I have no such reasonable belief of lethal harm. And that makes all the difference between what is a lawful and an unlawful action.

  • ||

    If a person is using their hands to harm me, I can have a reasonable belief they are trying to kill me.

    Bullshit. Complete and unadulterated. You're defining lethal force in a ridiculous way if it includes mere punching.

    And you haven't treated the case of rape either. I suppose that's lethal force too since the guy might have AIDS, right?

  • ||

    So if someone hits me in the face with a snowball, and I go over and punch him in the face, does that mean I responded with lethal force and should go to jail?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    No, Tulpa, but you would have overreacted... just like the cop did.

    Just like Fen would, except you wouldn't be using violence in the form of a gun like he would.

  • ||

    I'll take the rape answer:

    Well, you see Tulpa, rape doesn't just happen. There's usually a moment early on where the assailant will have to threaten their prey. "Shut up bitch or i'll fucking kill you."

    The rape is not the "force" in question in those scenarios. Its whatever threat is used to quell resistance long enough to complete the rape.

  • ||

    There's no reason rape has to be accompanied by a death threat. If he is significantly stronger, the rapist can just restrain the victim long enough to do what he's going to do with no words spoken.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    But being raped would surely be more damaging than getting pelted with snow... wouldn't it?

  • ||

    The problem is, you guys are just reciting "Lethal force is only justified in response to lethal force" over and over again, and then when I point out situations where you wouldn't stick to that principle in practice, you guys either ignore it or redefine "lethal force" in an unnatural way to cover the difficult examples I give.

  • ||

    Calling the police to report the "crimes" of having been pelted by snowballs will warrant no reaction whatsoever by the police because the cops think being pelted with snowballs is not a real crime (if you're a civilian) , yet if a cop is pelted by snowballs it's okay if he draws his gun on the snowballers.

  • ||

    It should be pointed out that the original intent of the "fight" was the throwing of snowballs at each other. the event was not supposed to be a protest, so much as people "having fun" in the city. The fact that the event attracted an anarchist element that decided to turn the thing into a protest should not be blamed on the organizers (or the rest of the people there). Considering the libertarian leanings of most of the readers here, I was expecting far less defending of the cop's actions- that's what I'd expect from a "National Review" thread on the story....

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Well, Fen would just shoot 'em, so at least we're getting input from one rogue cop with an itchy trigger finger...

  • JB||

    Again, more people are saying they are both wrong.

    I don't think many people are saying the cop didn't overreact.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Fen is saying the first cop didn't do enough. Sociopaths with disregard for liberty tend to be like that.

  • ||

    I think that although what the "snowballers" did to the cop's car falls under the gray area of the law, any cop with good sense would ahve taken it as a joke and laughed it off. none of the drivers in that intersection seemed to be in any actual danger from the snow- after all, its fresh and soft, not old and refrozen ice, that they were throwing.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Fen would just shoot 'em, quote unquote. Good thing he's likely going to lose his pension and go to prison someday for believing like he does.

  • ||

    "It should be pointed out that the original intent of the "fight" was the throwing of snowballs at each other"

    Then why were they targeting passing motorists?

    Why do you keep making excuses for them?

  • ||

    when you get (about) 200 people in a city together to do something, it is almost certain that at least one of them will do something stupid

  • ||

    Bull. No one in the gathering was telling the people throwing snowballs at passing cars and strangers to stop. If the gathering of which you are a part starts to do illegal things that violate the rights of others, either leave the gathering or tell those people to stop. Otherwise you bear some responsibility for what they do.

  • FredM||

    There is no law that says you have to try to stop someone from committing a crime.

    It is the action of a responsible person to leave others who are committing a crime.

    Stupidity all around. But the law enforcement officer is the only one who engaged lethal force. Was he the instigator? No, but he was an aggravating aggressor. His actions were far more irresponsible than any of the people in the crowd.

    Which is not to say that members of the crowd shouldn't be punished. However, proving which person threw the offending snowball(s) would be virtually impossible in a court of law. This should have been a simple "cease and disperse" situation, not one with a drawn firearm and a police officer and crowd taunting each other.

  • ||

    "There is no law that says you have to try to stop someone from committing a crime."

    Ha. I just KNEW you would hide behind that.

    You're too chickenshit to defend society, you farm out the burden to police or military, then rake them over the coals without even the assumption of innocence.

    Parasite.

  • LJM||

    Why haven't you admitted that you really shouldn't "just shoot" people throwing snowballs at cars?

  • ||

    I thought it was obvious that you shouldn't just shoot them.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    But you advocated that, Fen. Lying about it now just makes you look even more dangerous.

  • Neu Mejican||

    When the uniformed police officers showed up, you will notice that they did not behave in the same manner, tried to de-escalate the situation. The only thing they should have done differently, it seems, is focused more on de-escalating Detective Baylor and removing him from the situation sooner.

  • FredM||

    Ah, how VERY astute of you. Kudos!

  • ||

    "When the uniformed police officers showed up, you will notice that they did not behave in the same manner, tried to de-escalate the situation"

    This is SOP when another officer has been assualted.

  • Neu Mejican||

    Fen,

    What is SOP for an off-duty detective who wants to control a crowd who is disrupting traffic?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    But you've been lying about being a cop, Fen. Why should we believe anything you say now?

  • ||

    They also didn't pelt the uniformed officer with snowballs when he stepped out of his vehicle.

    If they had, things might have turned out a bit differently.

  • ||

    I don't blame you for ignoring this comment, NM. It does make your comment look pretty stupid.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    He could've left to find REAL crime, but why would he do that when his ego was so severely bruised?

  • ||

    "He could've left to find REAL crime"

    Yes, I'm sure you've fallen back on this lame excuse throughout your life.

    Libertarian: "why are you stopping me for speeding when you should be out catching murderers?"

    You should really think about changing your handle. I had a positive view of Libertarians till I came here.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    You have a choice of stopping only one of two crimes:

    Someone parking illegally (!) in a handicapped spot

    or

    Someone raping a woman at knifepoint

    Which one are you going to choose, Mr. Just Shoot 'Em Cop?

    And like fuck you "had a positive view of Libertarians". You saw this story, came here, ran into people who don't buy your brand of "justice", and decided to be an absolute police-state cocksucker about it.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Wait, I just found out a while ago that you've been lying about being a cop, so don't bother giving me one of your bullshit answers.

  • Neu Mejican||

    I don't blame you for ignoring this comment, NM. It does make your comment look pretty stupid.

    Yeah. That's it. I sat around all day brooding over how devastating this comment was to my argument. And now many many hours later I concede. Tulpa's comment made mine seem stupid.

    I wonder if Tulpa prints out comments like this for later masturbation fodder.

    "Oh yeah I bested that sophistry that time, yes I did...you and your semantics and rhetoric think you can confuse me, but no...I showed yoooouuuuu oo oo oo *!

  • FredM||

    I agree, but I have seen no evidence the crowd "pelted" the off-duty officer with snowballs. Only his vehicle.

    Cease and disperse was the proper action. A drawn badge, not a drawn weapon.

  • ||

    From the account linked to by Jesse's post below this one:

    I was standing right next to him when this happened. We were pelting the hummer (as we'd done to about 4 other hummers), when this guy decided to get out of the car. He proceeded to walk towards the crowd, and naturally, people started to throw more snowballs at him. That's when he brandished the gun.

    And mind you, the official position seems to be it was just a coincidence that they were specifically targeting Hummers.

  • FredM||

    If the account is accurate, then he had a responsibility to arrest the people throwing snowballs and charge them with battery.

    Drawing his weapon, even after being pelted with snowballs, was unjustified use of lethal force.

    You do not draw your weapon unless you intend to use it. If you intend to use it, your intent is to kill. There's no "intent to wound" in the use of firearms.

    Period.

    His badge and his radio, not his weapon, was the proper item to draw to gain control of this situation.

    And yes, I see that he drew his radio. At least he got half of it right.

  • ||

    yeah, I'm sure arresting people wouldn't be complicated at all by the fact that they were surrounded by an unruly mob.

  • ||

    But Fred is certain they weren't armed and wouldn't have responded with violence.

  • FredM||

    That is why you call for and wait for backup.

    Just because you have the option of lethal force does not mean you employ it. Just because you can threaten lethal force to take control of a situation does not make it right to do so.

    This officer was wrong. Even if he felt that every one of those kids was a threat, his proper response would have been "flight," not "fight." He has maybe 14 rounds in his weapon and another 12 in a magazine. Maybe he's got two or three backups. He's still only got enough firepower to disable 1/4 of that crowd, assuming every shot he fires finds its mark.

    Even with his firearm, he had no tactical advantage if he really believed the crowd was a lethal threat. He should have taken cover, not brandished his weapon.

    He was wrong. No matter how many hypotheticals, no matter how many excuses, no matter how many ways you try to re-envision the situation, he was wrong.

  • ||

    "You do not draw your weapon unless you intend to use it. If you intend to use it, your intent is to kill."

    Wrong. You ready your weapon whenever it gives you tactical advantage. The actual rule is:

    "never aim at anything you don't intend to kill"

    You don't know what you're talkng about.

  • ||

    Righteous.

  • ||

    I think that the local ABC station did a decent report on the situation: http://www.wjla.com/news/stories/1209/689050.html

  • ||

    We need government legislation to increase our CO2 output and warm up this planet and thus take the snow weapon out of the hands of the crazies!

  • ||

    "sir, do you have a license for those snowballs?"

  • even moron know...||

    Why doesn't he point his gun at the sky and shoot God for making it snow? That would make him feel very powerful, wouldn't it?

  • ||

    That would be unsafe. Idiot.

  • LJM||

    Would it be more unsafe than "just shooting" people who are throwing snowballs at cars?

  • ||

    I never said that would be safe, just that it would provide a much needed object lesson.

  • FredM||

    Drawing a firearm in a situation with no lethal threat is unsafe, sir.

    Oh, and "even moron know...": Let's discuss what happened, not what we think the person was trying to feel.

  • ||

    'Drawing a firearm in a situation with no lethal threat is unsafe, sir."

    You precog powers must be immense to determine if there's a lethal threat in a hositle mob. And from so many miles away!

    I wish we could put you in the street and make you abide by your own sillyness. Darwin would win that one.

  • FredM||

    The streets of Washington, D.C. are not Baghdad. Unruly mobs are very common in free societies and rarely lead to violence (the idiots at WTO and IMF conferences notwithstanding).

    Had I been in that street, I'd have flashed my badge and ordered the crowd to disperse. Had I perceived a *real* lethal threat, I'd have kept myself behind my vehicle until backup arrived, keeping myself safe and avoiding escalating the situation to an actually lethal stage.

    Yes, Darwin *would* have won that one...

  • ||

    "The streets of Washington, D.C. are not Baghdad."

    Have to agree with you there. Baghdad is safer.

  • ||

    Police employ drawn weapons all the time even in what may turn out to be unharmful situations...for example, clearing a vacant house. The badge should have came out first, however. I would like to see video leading up the the detective getting out of is Hummer. I am going to propose the hypothesis that the crowd was perhaps yelling at drivers of specific types of vehicles more than other types.

  • ||

    My understanding is that they were targeting "evil" SUVs.

    I would also like to see the entire clip, not just the one edited by the "we're not really activists" crowd.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Wouldn't matter, Fen... you'd still just shoot 'em.

  • ||

    Yes, but we've already established that I'm a sociopath.

    If anything, my comments should give you more incentive to defend the Rule of Law. Because when it falls, I get to play. And I don't believe in proportional repsonses.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    No, of course you don't. You'd probably beat the hell out of an elderly jaywalker, if not just shoot 'em, quote unquote.

    I'm glad you live nowhere near me. I'd hate to die by suicide by cop.

  • FredM||

    Yes, police employ drawn weapons in non-lethal situations all the time. That is because there is a threat of lethal violence. If clearing a house, they obviously believe a potentially dangerous criminal is inside.

    Most weapons-drawn incidents end without shots fired. The issue is one of perceived threat. There is no reason why a police officer should draw his weapon in the face of a group of unarmed kids who are just throwing snowballs. It is an entirely dis-proportionate response.

  • ||

    They weren't kids, they were all adults.

  • ||

    I totally agree. These were not kids, perhaps environmentalists with a hatred of SUVs. Look, in hindsight it would have been better had the cop shown his badge first, but did'nt these people throw snowballs at him after he brandished his weapon? It makes me wonder if they would have listened to him even if he had simply flashed his badge and told them to disperse. This cop should definitely get suspended for retraining, but...I keep hearing that the snowballs were non-lethal and as such did not require a lethal response. I think that's definitely situational. Suppose for just a moment that any of these SUV drivers were startled and lost control of their vehicle going through the intersection striking another vehicle or perhaps a pedestrian. Just sayin' is all. Although I strongly think that the police officer's action (in hindsight at least) were unjustified, I would argue that he could not have known that the situation was non-lethal. Again this is something you can only be 100% sure of after the fact.

  • ||

    "Let's discuss what happened, not what we think the person was trying to feel."

    Why bother. You're already making judgements about what threat the officer perceived... from the safety of your keyboard.

  • Fucking nigger||

    0:37 that guy throwing the snowball is counts as assault. It could have rock or even glass. You hippies ever thought about that? the cop was not pointing the gun at anyone. He was merely getting out of his way. No one wins, sure it was run of him to get his gun out, but if a black guy throws a snowball at me I gonna throw the him back to picking cottons at the field

  • .||

    What the.

  • ||

    The cop was black and the snowball throwers were lily-white. So I think your racist diatribe is supposed to go the other way.

  • JB||

    I think this was sarcasm.

  • Facts are inconvenient||

    The cop was black and the snowball throwers were lily-white.

    they were a mixed race crowd, so I am not sure you've done much to correct the facts here. but then again you seem to be blinded with rage by the "targeting Hummers" thing.

  • FredM||

    Wow. Just wow. You're bigoted statement is entirely unhelpful.

    Please go back to then 1940s where such incoherent race-bashing is still acceptable.

    As for "it could have a rock or even glass," it didn't. Snowballs are not "dangerous weapons." A firearm is not appropriate.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Guy's obviously just trolling. Normally I don't even dignify that kind of foolishness with a response.

  • FredM||

    But it's so fun to respond to trolls with logic and reason and watch them sputter at the lack of emotional reaction!

    Too bad this one didn't engage...

  • ||

    A well packed snowball can rupture an eyeball, just like an orange or tomato. It's actually worse than being hit by a billiard ball or baseball.

    The baseball will break the bone of the orbital rim, which absorbs the energy and protects the eyeball. The tomato, orange, or snowball, on the other hand, is soft enough to deform when it hits bone. It squeezes into the eye socket, increasing intra-ocular pressure until the globe ruptures.

    I think that qualifies as "serious physical injury" or "grievous bodily harm" under the statutes of every state, and certainly under the common law, which means physical force may be used to prevent it.

    There is still a question of whether bringing a gun to a snowball fight is a proportional response, and whether or not the fear of severe injury is reasonable, but I would not automatically assume that this cop is in the wrong. Those are questions for a jury to decide. He might just have the law on his side.

  • FredM||

    A water balloon has the same potential danger. Would you make water-balloon fights illegal?

    Throwing a snowball at the uniformed officer, if it occurred (I didn't see that in the video), was a battery. However, pulling a firearm in a snowball fight is an entirely dis-proportional response. The officer was wrong.

  • ||

    Dude, it happens at 0:46 in the video.

  • FredM||

    Okay, I missed that, but it now makes sense as to why the idiot was laughing and jumping up and down.

    However, it still wasn't lethal force and still does not excuse the officer's threat to use lethal force.

  • ||

    Dumb dumb dumb.... the officer should never have drawn his weapon. You don't pull it out unless you are going to use it. Even a civilian knows that. He could have gotten out of his vehicle brandished his badge and told them to stop.

    In my experience many police officers shouldn't be allowed to have a badge much less a gun.

  • FredM||

    Ignoring your second paragraph, you are right. Never draw your weapon unless your intent is to use it. That's one of the very first lessons in firearms safety, whether a civilian, military or police.

  • ||

    "Never draw your weapon unless your intent is to use it. That's one of the very first lessons in firearms safety, whether a civilian, military or police."

    Actually no. The rule goes:

    "Never aim at anything you don't intend to kill."

    But keep talking out of your ass.

  • FredM||

    Um, no, that's wrong.

    "Never aim at anything you don't intend to kill" is one of the rules. However, when talking about firearms safety, one of the rules is also, "never draw (or handle) a weapon unless you intend to use it."

    But keep ignoring the inconvenient. It makes you seem so much smarter and well informed.

  • ||

    Nope. 10 years in a Marine Victor unit, never heard that one. And you said: "one of the very first lessons in firearms safety...military or police."

    You're just making stuff up. Like your false assertion that readying a firearm = use of lethal force.

  • ||

    So the uniformed police arriving on scene intended to use their guns? The one in the video had his gun drawn (pointed at the ground) as he walked toward the crowd.

  • ||

    "So the uniformed police arriving on scene intended to use their guns? The one in the video had his gun drawn (pointed at the ground) as he walked toward the crowd."

    Any of our "enlightened sophisticates" going to respond to this? Because if you want the Detective's badge, you must want the other cop's badges too.

  • FredM||

    Enough. I am no longer responding to you, Fen. You are clearly obstinate. I would not be surprised if you were a bully as a kid or were yourself bullied on a regular basis, which heavily clouds your ability to logically separate reasonable and unreasonable beliefs.

    Also, I had already responded to this argument in an earlier post long ago, and didn't see it until now. Quit being so foolish.

  • FredM||

    Yes, he probably did. He arrived with the belief that another officer was under potentially lethal attack. I have already covered this. His belief and correct action based upon such belief does not excuse the wrong action of the first officer.

  • LJM||

    It's fascinating how often conservative, knee-jerk "law and order" statists are such enormous pussies. They're not just afraid of weapons of mass destruction that don't exist, or suffer from such a degree of terrorism that they're willing to shred the Constitution. Now, they're afraid of snowballs. It's hilariously pathetic.

  • FredM||

    Sir, I am a "conservative," "law and order" individual, but I am no statist. Statists can be both liberal and conservative. Your association of ["knee-jerk" and "statist]" with ["law and order" and "conservative"] is both ill-informed and lacking in original thought.

    This police officer was clearly wrong, and it is my *conservative*, *law-and-order* viewpoint that tells me this.

  • LJM||

    Fred, I apologize. I should have said, "some" law and order conservatives.

    Fen is the pussy, here, happy to shoot people for throwing snowballs, because he's so afraid of them.

  • ||

    "Now, they're afraid of snowballs. It's hilariously pathetic."

    No, whats pathetic is your inability to follow an argument. The best response you can muster is a strawman.

    You should demand a refund from your college.

  • FredM||

    While I as fully disagree with LJM as you, were I in your shoes I would not be shouting "strawman" the way you are, for two reasons:

    1) You have engaged in ad-hominem attack after ad-hominem attack, which seriously damages your foundation.

    2) You clearly have no idea what "strawman" means.

    From Dictionary.com:

    1. a person used as a cover for some questionable activity [syn: front man]
    2. a weak or sham argument set up to be easily refuted [syn: straw man]
    3. an effigy in the shape of a man to frighten birds away from seeds [syn: scarecrow]

    "Strawman" means that it was intentionally set up to be easily refuted. I believe the word you're looking for is "specious," which is defined, "apparently good or right though lacking real merit; superficially pleasing or plausible."

    I believe you are the one who should be demanding a refund.

  • ||

    No fred. Its a strawman because he's asserting an argument we haven't made.

    As for the rest:

    "You have engaged in ad-hominem attack after ad-hominem attack, which seriously damages your foundation."

    Its quite possible to refute an idiot's argument and insult him. And still be right.

    And to care about my "foundation", I would have to believe people here are arguing in good faith. They're not, so I get to play.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    When have you been right, Fen?

  • ||

    When I accused you of filching sheep.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Liar. You did no such thing. Shows you can't be trusted to serve the public - especially since you entertain fantasies of shooting people for throwing snowballs.

  • a snowballer in the crowd||

    When the guy got out of his car holding a gun, I packed an extra-hard snowball and threw it at him to save everyone else from the madman. I missed, but almost became a hero.

  • FredM||

    If true, you are no hero. You're just a jerk who could have gotten someone killed by doing something very, very stupid and very, very illegal.

    *Attempted* battery is still a crime.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Yeah, that was incredibly smart.

  • ||

    We have eyewitness accounts saying the cop was not holding the gun when he exited the car. So stfu.

  • a snowballer in the crowd||

    Yo, that was satire.

  • FredM||

    It's not funny. Grow up.

  • a snowballer in the crowd||

    Thanks, I'll keep trying to grow up.

    Meanwhile, my point, which obviously misfired, for which I apologize, was not primarily to be funny, but to dramatize the impropriety of both positions. Namely, the impropriety of the snowballers' initial and escalated assaults, and the impropriety of the detective's threatening. Both acted like dopes, and the blame seems evenly split, since the snowballers started it and the detective broadly over-reacted.

    What I tried to ape was the self-righteous attitude represented in the video's soundtrack of both parties. Sorry it didn't carry.

  • Snowball/thread ref||

    a snowballer in the crowd, Why are you apologizing? Screw Fred that he didn't get it. I was entertained.

  • a snowballer in the crowd||

    a snowballer in the crowd, Why are you apologizing?

    Because I have yet to grow up, Silly.

  • Snowball/thread ref||

    Did Elizabeth Lambert apologize? Did you see the ref pull her out? Get back in the game and piss people off.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    80%+ of the people in this thread think that there's blame to go around, and that the cop should have unholstered his pistol.

    That said, this is not only a great moment for wild speculation, it's also a "teachable moment", ah ha ha ha.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    er, should *not* have unholstered his pistol. Dammit.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    It's a shame that all parties involved couldn't get the Abominable Snowman mauling that they all so truly deserved.

  • ||

    From watching the video, and a couple others I found online I don't think that pulling a gun was a smart idea.

    1. From what I can tell the snowballs didn't have ice in them, they weren't denting cars and I didn't see people bloodied. As a youth I've been involved in lots of snowball fights with ice, and believe me, if they were pegging the cop or his car with ice you would have seen/heard the effects.

    2. I understand the cop is pissed off, but he has lots of other options in front of him. He could use a taser (yes, I looked, taser worked as designed in snow/rain) No, I don't like how police overuse the taser, but it is a lesser evil than a gun. Or he could wait for other police arrive to break it up.

    3. Yes, I would expect a property owner to use force to defend his property, but the force has to reasonable to the threat. If I come home and find kids pegging my home/car with snowballs I have a right to get them to stop, but I would argue pulling a gun is over kill and unjustified.

    However, if there was ice in the snowballs I might reconsider some of these points (it would depend).

  • ||

    Using a taser on people in the crowd would have done more harm to them than pointing a gun at the ground, genius.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    If Detective Baylor had unleashed a Yeti onto the crowd from the pack of a paddy wagon, that would have been ideal.

  • ||

    STEVE SMITH NOT GO IN PADDYWAGON

  • JB||

    Headline:

    Yeti Eats 14th & U Hipsters

  • ||

    Tulpa, I am not saying he should use a taser, I am saying that if forced between a gun and taser the taser would have the lesser of two evils. I am point out he has options than pointing a gun. To me both are overkill in this case.

    Point a gun towards a crowd strikes me as less safe than a taser.

  • ||

    He didn't point the gun at the crowd, for the fucking umpteenth time. It was pointed at the ground the entire time.

  • FredM||

    And for the umpteenth time, it doesn't matter that he pointed the gun at the ground. He drew his weapon, which is a threat to use lethal force.

    Further, the weapon's orientation can be quickly and easily changed.

    The mere fact that the weapon has been drawn means there is intent to use it. This is one of the most basic tenets of firearms safety. Use of a firearm is "lethal force." When you fire your weapon at a living target, you have a reasonable expectation that said firearm will kill the target.

    Again, logical progression:

    1) The officer must complete firearms safety courses to get his weapon
    2) Weapon is drawn.
    3) Drawing the weapon means intent to use it.
    4) Intent to use a firearm means intent to kill.
    5) The orientation of the firearm is irrelevant, since it is an easily handled lethal device.

  • ||

    "And for the umpteenth time, it doesn't matter that he pointed the gun at the ground. He drew his weapon, which is a threat to use lethal force."

    NO. IT. IS. NOT.

    At least you've moved from "brandishing is use of lethal force" to "brandishing is *threat* of lethal force"

    Should we wait while you finish up your Sally Sturthers Online Law Degree? I've got 5 mins to burn.

  • FredM||

    Damn, I really didn't want to respond to you anymore.

    Yes. It. Is.

    If I carry a weapon in my hand, I am threatening to use lethal force.

    If I am attempting to change the behavior of others with a weapon in my hand, I am using the threat of lethal force.

    No, a threat and actual use are not the same, but if I am threatening, then I am using lethal force to get my way. This officer used coercive behavior with lethal force as a backup without first being threatened with lethal force. And that is a crime.

  • ||

    "would expect a property owner to use force to defend his property"

    He readied his weapon to defend himself from a hostile crowd while he waited backup to arrive. Not to defend property.

  • FredM||

    His life was not in danger. Use of lethal force is not authorized. See my logical progression above.

  • ||

    Again, its so cool that you can precog for us. Must be easy since you have nothing to lose if you're wrong.

    While I've got you in this "state", who do you "see" winning the superbowl?

    Or do your "powers" only work after the fact?

  • ||

    Ok, who wants to start the betting pool? Will this criminal act of brandishing a firearm be punished in any way at all?

    -jcr

  • ||

    What criminal act? Police aren't allowed to brandish their firearms?

    Also this:

    "the uniformed police arriving on scene... the one in the video had his gun drawn (pointed at the ground) as he walked toward the crowd."

    You want his badge too?

  • FredM||

    I'm entirely speculating here, but in response to "officer under attack," it would be appropriate to arrive with firearm drawn. You will note from the video that said firearm was later holstered when he determined the crowd was not a threat.

    The FACT that the situation should never have escalated to that point notwithstanding. The off-duty officer had no such reasonable belief that the crowd was a lethal threat.

  • ||

    "in response to 'officer under attack,' it would be appropriate to arrive with firearm drawn."

    But innapropriate for the actual "officer under attack" to do so....

    See? Thats why I think you're stoned.

  • FredM||

    The officer was not under lethal threat. Drawing his weapon was not appropriate or legal.

    The newly arrived officer believed the first officer was under attack. His drawn weapon was appropriate.

  • ||

    "The off-duty officer had no such reasonable belief that the crowd was a threat."

    Because its not like they threw things at his car or called him names or threatened violence. Nope.

  • FredM||

    No one threatened lethal force. His use of lethal force was not authorized.

    We seem to be talking in circles here. Let me make it clear what the law says: The use of lethal force is only permissible when the individual has a reasonable belief that lethal force may be used or has already been used.

    Being pelted with snowballs, to my knowledge, has never been used as a mitigating factor in a justifiable homicide defense. If you can cite it, I might change my tune.

  • ||

    "His use of lethal force was not authorized"

    He. Did. Not. Use. Lethal. Force.

  • ||

    A police officer looks at every situation he comes into as a possible life threatening situation. Even 'routine' traffic stops can be life threatening.

  • FredM||

    Police officers do not draw their weapons for routine traffic stops.

    The belief that a situation *could* be life threatening is not a belief that a situation *is* life threatening.

    I believe I could be in a life threatening situation every time I go to a downtown area of the major city near my home. Should I be allowed to draw my weapon just because someone throws a snowball at me? No. Neither is it permissible for a police officer to do so. The threat is not sufficient for the use of lethal force.

  • ||

    Unholstering the weapon is not an act of lethal force, firing is....having a bat on my shoulder when a salesman comes to my door is also not an act of lethal force. Swinging it at his head, however, would be. My having the bat on my shoulder does not indicate my intent to use it in so much as it should be looked at as a deterrent to the salesman. There is no law broken. The salesman's perception may be that I intend to hit him, while that may not be the case at all.

    You are right about the traffic stops in most situations...there are no routine situations as a cop. The minute you let your guard

  • FredM||

    A bat has far more uses than as a weapon. You could be headed to a softball game or merely transporting it to another location. In fact, were I a salesman and you had a bat on your shoulder, I'd probably start talking about post-season trades or little league this spring.

    A firearm has only one purpose: To kill. Drawing your weapon means you intend to use it, which by progression means you intend to kill someone. Again, a very basic tenet of firearms safety.

    I suppose I should wait until a mugger actually points his weapon at me before drawing my pistol and shooting him? That's the logical progression of your argument.

    It seems from your argument that the police officer is given greater leeway in the law because he holds a badge. This is a violation of the principle of the sovereign individual, upon which our system of law is based.

  • FredM||

    Considering the specious, sophomoric arguments already made, I feel I must clarify: If you are on a shooting range, your intent is probably to shoot a target, which means you're not engaging in the threat of lethal force. If you're in the middle of the woods with a scoped rifle wearing orange camouflage, you're most likely hunting, and again not threatening a person with lethal force.

    If you're in a gun store and the guy behind the counter takes one out of the case, his intent is probably to show it to someone, and the person who takes it is probably intending to inspect it while considering purchase.

    These would be reasonable exceptions to my seemingly hard-and-fast rule about handling a weapon.

    Just wanted to avoid having to refute those arguments later.

  • ||

    "I suppose I should wait until a mugger actually points his weapon at me before drawing my pistol and shooting him? That's the logical progression of your argument."

    Because criminals = law enforcement.

  • ||

    Gee Fred, your pre-emptive defense against "specious sophomoric arguments" missed a whopper. Imagine that.

  • ||

    Under CPL laws in my state, I would have to wait for a mugger to act in a way that could result in imminent great bodily injury that could result in death...in other words, yes. I have to wait for the mugger to do something leading me to think that I am in immediate danger before I can pull out my .45 and drop him. Firing before he pulls a weapon (be it a gun or a knife) lands me in prison.

    The question, which to me still remains unanswered, is the legality of the detective to have his weapon unholstered. I do agree with you that is was an overreaction, but if he was within the law and SOP, no harm done.

  • ||

    "Under CPL laws in my state, I would have to wait for a mugger to act in a way that could result in imminent great bodily injury that could result in death"

    And I think that underscores the reason Fred and I are talking past each other. He comes from a world of legalspeak and UN sanctions. While mine is based on 10 years in a victor unit.

    "Under CPL laws in my state... I have to wait for the mugger to do something leading me to think that I am in immediate danger before I can pull out my .45 and drop him."

    Fred would wag his finger at you. But then do the exact same thing as you when its his life and his family at risk. He'd drop the perp at first opportunity.

    I'm weary of these moral hypocrites:

    "Torture it wrong! Unless its my city, my family, my life at risk from a WMD attack. Then I'll grant an exception to the laws I supported, with a wink-nod that I'll pardon Fen afterwards for saving my parasitic ass"

    These jerks on the street are no different. Harassing passing motorists, then all outraged when they see a police officer ready his weapon.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    He did NOT need to ready his weapon. YOU think he should have, but then you would just shoot 'em, quote unquote.

  • ||

    "He did NOT need to ready his weapon"

    Monday morning quaterback strikes again.

    Such precision.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    You're just saying that because I'm not the type to just shoot people for the hell of it.

    Why you're still a cop, is a mystery. Don't you guys get psych evaluations?

  • ||

    if he broke protocol by having his gun out, reprimand him. BUT if it was his call and he broke no PD specific regs, let it go. He may have felt threatened by something we have not seen...would sure like to see video of the minutes leading up to his exiting his car.

  • wayne||

    I know I am late to this melee, but when a civilian unholsters a firearm that is "brandishing". You need not point it at anyone, the simple act of unholstering is brandishing.

    That law may not apply to cops, though. Cops routinely brandish their firearms in situations where they feel threatened or where they have an expectation of escalating violence.

    All of that said, I think the cop over reacted. He should not have drawn his weapon, in fact he should have stayed in his vehicle and called for help on his radio if he thought a law being broken, or just driven away. Maybe he argued with his wife over breakfast and was still pissed off, or whatever, and he was in a mood to rumble. He screwed up.

  • matt2||

    The 2nd cop was responding to a call about a man with a gun in the crowd. Not exactly an analogous situation, asshole.

    For the record, I think the hipsters are assholes as well. Clearly neither party is completely in the right.

  • ||

    No, the arriving units were responding to the cops call for help, asshole.

  • matt2||

    HOLY SHIT, this is plainly false. You're just making stuff up. From the article:

    Assistant Chief Peter Newsham says the officer was responding to a 911 call reporting a man with a gun in the crowd -- apparently the man was a plainclothes D.C. police detective.

    Newsham says the officer drew his weapon when he spotted a man matching the description of the armed person, but holstered his weapon when he recognized the plain clothes detective.
  • JB||

    Off-topic, but I had to share:

    http://www.popsci.com/science/.....ment-51016

    This is in response to a comment thread about a story on how most cocaine is cut with a drug for deworming opossums.

  • ||

    I think there's a small (but trivial) reason for the cop to stop and tell the folks to cease and desist from throwing smowballs at cars. There's zero reason for him to be waving his pistol around.

    That said, there's more reason for him to be brandishing his firearm at the snowball-throwers than there will be for him to be pointing it at people who are "criminals" because they refuse to buy health insurance.

  • ||

    rewatch the video....he never waved it around. Can I have your address so I can come egg your house? A car is property...a house is property. I have a right to have someone not deface my property. You may not car if your car gets snowballed,(and i could care less as well) but some people do care. Ever been to a car show and seen the signs on the $100,000 hot rod that say "you toucha my car, I breaka your hand" The sign is the deterrent, so is a policeman's gun.

  • ||

    "Can I have your address so I can come egg your house?"

    And remember, based on the arguments presented here, the *perp* gets to decide if is actions are damaging or threatening. Not the property owner.

    I'll bring the paint and salt.

  • ||

    I would hope there would be a more objective criterion about damage to the property, like whether or not any actual defacing of the property occurred. If so, I'm 100% on your side.

    But my concern was for possibly accidents that could be caused by the throwing of snowballs at cars. I think the cop did have cause to insist that that activity stop.

    And yes, he was waving his gun around.

  • ||

    Yeah, I tend to agree with you about not wanting to get snowballed, but I wouldn't get upset about it. My concern would be about drivers losing control of their vehicles due to one or more snowballs hitting their cars in a short period of time.

    I think the analogy about egging my car/house is specious...eggs do not fall naturally from the sky and the guy's Hummer already was covered with the same stuff the snowballs were made of, presumably without damage. And he was most certainly waving his firearm around, though I did not see him actually point it at anyone.

  • ||

    I think you're mistaking his radio for his firearm. I saw him wave the radio around, not the firearm.

  • ||

    No, look in his left hand. It's a firearm. And trust me, I know what a firearm looks like.

  • ||

    I watched it again. Still dont see him waving a firearm around.

    Please give the timestamp where you claim you see this.

  • ||

    And again. Still nothing.

    Please give the timestamp where you claim you see this.

  • ||

    0:16

    If that ain't a hogleg, I ain't a libertarian. And it sure ain't stationary.

  • ||

    Are you fucking kidding me? At 0:16 he drops something in the snow and bends over to pick it back up. Gun stays fixed in his left hand.

    Thats "most certainly waving his firearm around" ??

    Are we even watching the same vid?

  • ||

    If you're talking about the beginning of the video, it's not being "waved around". He's reaching down to pick something up on the ground so he leans over and his gun hand moves to his left. It's pointed at the ground the whole time.

  • ||

    For reference, let's look at 18 USC 924:

    For purposes of this subsection, the term “brandish” means, with respect to a firearm, to display all or part of the firearm, or otherwise make the presence of the firearm known to another person, in order to intimidate that person, regardless of whether the firearm is directly visible to that person.

    Under federal law, what this cop did was "brandish" a firearm, something that would land one of us Great Unwashed in the hoosegow.

  • ||

    You can come egg my house and car any day that eggs start falling out of the sky, like snow does. My house and car were designed to withstand frozen water. (Well maybe just my car. I live in Florida)

  • ||

    "There's zero reason for him to be waving his pistol around."

    He didn't wave it around.

    That the "anti-cop" side needs to continually distort what happened to support their position says alot.

    Maybe the cop over-reacted, we weren't there so we didn't see what he did. What we know for sure is that the jerks on the street shouldn't have been throwing anything at passing motorists.

  • ||

    I'm not "anti-cop." I defended the officer here who cuffed Henry Louis Gates and took a raft of grief over it.

    I think the cop had the authority to order people to stop throwing snowballs at traffic. Pulling his gun was an overreaction.

  • ||

    I watched it again. Still dont see him waving a firearm around.

    Please give the timestamp where you claim you see this.

  • ||

    Anyone? Can anyone who's claimed he was "waving" his firearm around pls provide the timestamp?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    He took his weapon out when he didn't NEED to take it out. Waving or not, he is in the wrong.

    But you'd have gone the extra step and started shooting them.

    I'll bet you watch footage of the Kent State shooting, with lube and tissues handy, in a darkened room at 3 AM...

  • ||

    "He took his weapon out when he didn't NEED to take it out. Waving or not, he is in the wrong"

    So you finally admit he didn't wave it around, as has been falsely claimed here by you and your kind. Thats a start.

    "he didn't NEED to take it out"

    ...claims the guy with zero experience, miles away from the instance.

    "I'll bet you watch footage of the Kent State shooting"

    Where the protestors surrounded the feeble weekend warriors and shouted "Kill! Kill! Kill!"

    Ironic that you brought that up.

  • SIV||

    The thread is full of fail.

  • ||

    Because criminals = law enforcement.

    Now you're getting it.

  • ||

    Well, if you truly equate criminals with law enforcemnet, we're done.

  • ||

    The 2nd cop was responding to a call about a man with a gun in the crowd.

    This is a very interesting and important point.

  • ||

    That is, if somebody in the "mob" called 911 to report a crazy man with a gun who also happened to the very same off duty non-uniformed cop who was openly displaying his firearm in an explicit attempt to intimidate the terrorist snow-throwers.

  • ||

    The arriving units were backup, responding to his call of "officer under attack".

  • matt2||

    Again, you are lying. From the article on the local ABC affilate's website:

    Assistant Chief Peter Newsham says the officer was responding to a 911 call reporting a man with a gun in the crowd -- apparently the man was a plainclothes D.C. police detective.

    Newsham says the officer drew his weapon when he spotted a man matching the description of the armed person, but holstered his weapon when he recognized the plain clothes detective.
  • ||

    Oh because ABC is the only information broker we're allowed to use. Idiot.

  • matt2||

    Uh, ABC was directly quoting THE COPS, WHO YOU LOVE UNCONDITIONALLY.

    Are you really that dumb?

  • ||

    Not so dumb to believe that ABC's account is complete.

    Gee matt, you kinda walked right into that one.

  • matt2||

    [citation needed]

  • ||

    we're done.

    WooHoo!

  • hmm||

    first time it snows here I am so going to own the lil' fuckers that toss snowballs at me 1911 style.

  • ||

    Quite the split here between the "cops are always wrong" crowd, and the "cops are wrong when they actually do something excessive, like arrest or shoot someone wrongfully" crowd.

  • hmm||

    I'd say drawing a weapon without eminent danger or for the shear purpose of threatening nonviolent unarmed civilians is wrong for all people. Regardless of occupation. I'd also say such an action is infinitely more wrong than throwing a snowball at a car, a person, your pet, your retarded fetus...

  • ||

    nonviolent unarmed civilians

    Throwing snowballs at strangers' heads is violence.

  • hmm||

    Ya, I have suffered some severe red ear from snowballs. It almost hurt as much as the time I took 7.62 round to the arm.

    I can easily put myself in the cops shoes. And under no circumstance other than my life being in danger does that firearm leave its holster. It's not a fucking negotiation device. It's a goddamn tool to kill things. He could have sat in his car. Called backup. Done nothing. Thrown a snowball. Walked over and showed his badge and said no tossing snowballs at cars along with a litany of other things. There was zero reason to escalate the situation to that level. Especially from a man charged with keeping the peace.

    Defend him all you want, the guy was wrong and no man with any experience with weapons, or common fucking sense for that matter, would pull a gun on people throwing snowballs.

    You take on a certain responsibility when you carry a firearm, this man failed miserably regardless of how you spin it. Just ask yourself what would have happened if he wasn't an officer.

  • ||

    +1

  • ||

    "no man with any experience with weapons would pull a gun on people throwing snowballs."

    He didn't pull a gun on them.

  • ||

    It was in his hand, and he was diplaying it. This is known as "brandishing" and is against the law for you and me.

  • ||

    But not for cops right? Law enforcement is allowed to display firearms in public, yes?

  • ||

    Cops are constrained by the same laws you and I are, Fen. There are exceptions to firearms laws for police, but not to the point that they can march around brandishing weapons whenever they feel like it.

  • ||

    "Cops are constrained by the same laws you and I are, Fen. There are exceptions to firearms laws for police"

    Constrained with exceptions != against the law for you and me.

    You're debating yourself now. Kinda icky to do that in public.

    "march around brandishing weapons whenever they feel like it."

    So not only are the "brandishing", now you've got them marching around. Neat trick.

  • ||

    No, Fen, the exceptions do not provide broader rules for pulling one's gun on someone, but more along the lines of where a firearm may be taken and under what form of legal justification, such as requiring a CCW permit for civilians, but not for police. They may also permit police to carry within otherwise-prohibited locales such as bars.

    I have yet to see a statute the allows police to threaten people with their firearms without a reasonable fear of bodily harm being present.

  • ||

    "I have yet to see a statute the allows police to threaten people with their firearms without a reasonable fear of bodily harm being present."

    No one was threatened by a firearm.

    Just because you wet yourself when you see a firearm doesn't mean its being used to threaten people.

  • hmm||

    The weapon left its holster. He was in a low ready position with his handgun. That constitutes pulling a gun on someone. If upholster a side arm in the same situation I am committing a crime unless my life is in danger. Your point is trite and absurd. Even officers are trained not to escalate unless necessary. I will guarantee he broke protocol for his department, no matter how shitty his department is. (never mind how fucked up escalation usually policy is)

    Did you notice the second officer? As soon as he heard someone say gun and point to the detective he upholstered his side arm and started assessing the area. The whole time keeping his gun low and right next to his holster so not to cause anymore problems and ensure his safety. The retarded detective pulled his side arm because someone threw a fucking snowball at him after he got out of his Hummer to play Billy Badass. There's a slight difference. The second officer holstered his weapon immediately after he realized what was going on.

    Again defend him all you want. The guy is a shitball. Plain and simple. He displayed his shitballness through out ever second of the video.

  • ||

    "The whole time keeping his gun low and right next to his holster so not to cause anymore problems and ensure his safety"

    Both cops did this. The only difference is that you don't like the first cop, so you color his actions with all kinds of bullshit - your "low ready poistion" is no different than the second cop's.

    "The retarded detective pulled his side arm because someone threw a fucking snowball at him after he got out of his Hummer to play Billy Badass"

    Ignornant specutlation of motives. And Timestamp where he "pulled" his firearm. I see it in his hand, but never actually being drawn.

  • ||

    Yes, pulling the firearm was perhaps not the best judgment call, especially in hindsight, but it's not like he arrested someone or shot someone.

    And, don't know about you, but if you try to put yourself in the cop's shoes for just a moment here, empathize with his POV, he had cause to feel threatened -- one cop, angry crowd, and not a lot of cooler heads in that crowd trying to deescalate the situation.

    Finally, it's one thing to throw snowballs at people participating in a snowball fight. They are in effect consenting to having a snowball tossed at them. Throwing them at strangers who aren't part of the fun and might not be in the mood for being pelted is at best poor manners.

  • ||

    True, there were a lot of people in the crowd that were in the wrong, first by throwing snowballs at cars and also by defying a cop giving a lawful order to cease doing so.

    That still doesn't justify him going for his gat absent some reasonable threat.

  • Paul||

    You know who else brought guns to snowball fights?

  • ||

    Hitler?

  • hmm||

    Satan

    after hell froze over.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Full of win.

  • Paul||

    I also like how you could sense that the cop knew he was in trouble.

  • ||

    There's also evidence of the cosmo/paleo divide here. I bet Nick and Jesse know some of the chuckers in their own social circles.

  • Neu Mejican||

    With Tulpa it is always about figuring out which team people are on.

    Why?

  • ||

    That's not true, of course, but you'd have to be a fool not to observe that human beings tend to follow their herd. I know you like to pretend you're above the fray and stuff, but down here on this lowly plane of existence we have to be concerned about such things.

  • Neu Mejican||

    we have to be concerned about such things

    But, why?

  • ||

    For those of us living among human beings, predicting the behavior of those human beings is crucial to our survival. And seeing as how human beings tend to follow a herd in their behavior, it is profitable to determine which herd they're a part of.

  • Neu Mejican||

    I believe that you actually believe this.

    And that your SURVIVAL depends upon knowing whether or not someone is on your team or on the other team.

    It simplifies the world and saves you having to judge individuals based on what they say and do.

    It has, for instance, allowed you to determine that these college kids, because they are college kids were not out having fun, but were actually engaged in a violent political protest with leftist-environmental goals.

  • ||

    No, I made that determination based on one of the group's eyewitness testimony that they were targeting Hummers. And your supposition that I have some sort of prejudice against college kids is ludicrous, not only because I have not stated any such thing but also for another reason which you are probably not aware of. Looks like I'm not the only one who takes factors beside individual behavior into account.

  • ||

    And, sure enough, the post on Monday morning reveals that Reason.tv 's Dan Hayes was among the snowballers. I really should get tested for ESP.

  • LJM||

    The thread is full of fail.

    That's because the thread is full of Fen. The man who fears for his life from snowballs.

  • matt2||

    And makes up facts to fit his narrative. The cops said that the responding officers were responding to a 911 call, not an "officer in distress" call as Fen claims.

    So which is it, Fen? Are you lying, or is the police spokesman?

  • ||

    "The cops said that the responding officers were responding to a 911 call, not an "officer in distress" call as Fen claims"

    Read it again. It was both - the arriving units were responding to the detectives radio call for help, as well as a 911 call re "a man with a gun."

    Or just look at the vid. They arrive and quickly follow the detectives orders when he points the perps out, ie. they already know of the unidentified detective on the scene and quickly coordinate with him.

    They prob drew their firearms because they thought the 911 call referred to a perp in the crowd.

  • matt2||

    The cops themselves have not even claimed this scenario. You are making shit up to fit your narrative without any support.

    Again, you're either lying or claiming that the police are lying. Which is it?

  • ||

    No, I'm claiming that your information from the police is not complete.

    But don't let that stop you from making your judgement. Just don't whine like a bitch when it comes back around to you.

  • ||

    1. I'd like to give kudo to the uniformed officers for acting to descalate the situation.

    2. Detective Baylor is a fucking coward and pussy. I would be surprised that brandishing his weapon is a common way in which he enforces the law. I wouldn't be a bit surprised if he does it in his private live with equal lack of justification.

    3. Fen. You are a douche. People like you are why we have the highest prison population in the world.

    4. Some of the crowd was acting like punks.

    5. Being a punk isn't a crime.

    6. This stupid pussy/coward could have put the american made piece of shit in 4WD and drove off, but apparently being Mr. Tough-guy with a gun is his MO.

  • ||

    Wow Troy, interesting how you dovetail pussy and coward. We're all so sorry that your Mother did that to you. Remember, its not your fault.

  • Just sayin'||

    With all due respect, kudos is not a plural noun.

    Carry on.

  • ||

    I love snowball fights.

    I just don't throw them at non-combatants. And I certainly wouldn't expect to be treated fairly if I did.

  • ||

    Would you pull a gun on someone who threw an unwanted snowball at you, Fen?

  • ||

    Of course not.

    However, if you threw a snowball at my wife or kid, and by some quirk of fate, it caused her to slip on the ice, or wreck her car...ie. if your snowball caused them injury, then yes.

    This is why you shouldn't throw snowballs at passing cars. You might engage someone like me.

  • ||

    Did any of those dire things happen at this incident?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    No, but he'd just shoot you, quote unquote, for throwing snowballs at him. He's a cop, and therefore more important than you or I.

  • ||

    I'm not a cop and have never implied so.

  • ||

    You're obviously not a cop because you have no fuckin' clue about officer safety. Assuming that 1) the crowd was dangerous and unruly 2) throwing snowballs is a propert crime and has potential to hurt innocent by-standers and therefore #) must be dealt with by LE, the Detective was still ABSOLUTELY WRONG in confronting the crowd. A tactical officer DOES NOT confront an large mob (possibly armed, as you speculated) by himself. Even witha firearm he could easily be overtaken. If he had been rushed he could have hurt (obviously), he could have hurt innocent by-standers close by if he emptied his gone into the crowd, and he could have endangered any other officers who would have been dispatched to save his dumb, unsafe ass and quell the crowd of snowballers. He escalated a SNOWBALL fight. he could have gotten lots of people killed. So even cops think this guy is a moron.

  • ||

    gone = gun. Terrible typist.

  • ||

    But I'm getting that you really hate cops.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I do when they abuse their power.

    Good thing you're NOT a cop, by the way, though you have been misrepresenting yourself in this entire thread.

  • ||

    Prove it

  • ||

    Nope.

  • ||

    So was the brandishing of the weapon justified?

  • ||

    See, you're assuming he "pulled a gun" on them. Not the case.

    And really, your perception has already been proven suspect:

    Jeffersonian: "most certainly waving his firearm around..at 0:16"

    ...he drops something in the snow and bends over to pick it back up. Gun stays fixed in his left hand.

    So I stand by my earlier assesment - you need to distort what actually happened to support your position.

    I'm of a mind that he was simply collecting his gear after exiting the car - most cops I know don't like the way holsters get caught in civilian seatbelts, so they leave them off their belt. Look at how he's all fumble-fingers, dropping stuff in the snow, tucking his jacket in while he bends to retrieve. Add to this the bulkiness of a winter coat. Its not unreasonable to view your "brandishing" as him simply gathering his gear. He's holding the gun safely, not waving it around as you falsely claimed.

  • ||

    See, you're assuming he "pulled a gun" on them. Not the case.

    Then either the pistol is permanently affixed to Detective Baylor's hand or it magically appreared there, because the weapon is most certainly there. For it to be so, he had to "pull" it from its holster. He either did so in response to a snowball tossed at him or he did so capriciously. Either way, he's not acting rationally.

  • ||

    "He either did so in response to a snowball tossed at him or he did so capriciously."

    In other words: You don't know

    And you claim that he's the one who's irrational...

    I hope you lose your job to your own standard of ignorant speculation.

  • ||

    Enough of this apologist bullshit. My BF is a cop. He's fumble-fingered because he's an idiot who is fumble-fingered and shouldn't have a gun. My BF is a firearms instructor and yeas, he hates the way the utility belt feels in a car, and he's the first to say that you holster your gun and identify yourself to a crowd like this. You don't get out of the car fumbling around with your equipment. You contend that the crowd could be armed, and could be dangerous. If so, what kind of dipshit cop approaches fumble-fingered and dropping stuff? If the crowd is dangerous, you come prepared, your head on a swivel, and prepared for action. Fen, you contend that the crowd is potentailly dangerous, so he's ready with gun in hand just in case. Then you say he's fumble fingered, preparing himself and his equipment as he gets out of the car, not meaning to threaten anyone...which is it? Is he ready to rock n roll, or is he a keystone cop? Make up your fuckin' mind.

  • ||

    Second sentence--"He" is Detective Baylor, not my BF.

  • Anonymous||

    Tell your BF to get a real job.

  • ||

    Yes

  • ||

    Wrong.

  • ||

    See, you're assuming he "pulled a gun" on them. Not the case.

    And really, your perception has already been proven suspect:

    Jeffersonian: "most certainly waving his firearm around..at 0:16"

    ...he drops something in the snow and bends over to pick it back up. Gun stays fixed in his left hand.

    So I stand by my earlier assesment - you need to distort what actually happened to support your position.

    I'm of a mind that he was simply collecting his gear after exiting the car - most cops I know don't like the way holsters get caught in civilian seatbelts, so they leave them off their belt. Look at how he's all fumble-fingers, dropping stuff in the snow, tucking his jacket in while he bends to retrieve. Add to this the bulkiness of a winter coat. Its not unreasonable to view your "brandishing" as him simply gathering his gear. He's holding the gun safely, not waving it around as you falsely claimed.

  • matt2||

    most cops I know don't like the way holsters get caught in civilian seatbelts

    And how do police seatbelts differ from "civilian seatbelts?" I'm genuinely curious.

  • ||

    Nah, you and I are way past the point of civil discourse. You know what you can do with your curiosity.

  • matt2||

    OK, guy.

    So many unsupported assertions and not a coherent response to my questions yet. Don't take your toys and go home just because you've been exposed as a liar.

  • ||

    i contend that there is more to this story...from what I have read, the crowd may have been targeting certain vehicle types I would also wager that a few choice words came out of the mouths of some as they drove buy.

  • matt2||

    Oh, I'm not on the hipsters' side. I guarantee that they acted like assholes & probably deserved most of what they got.

    My position is that everyone involved is not worth defending.

  • ||

    Your position is: "sure the hipsters were assholes, BUT..."

    Typcial equivalence bullshit I expect from the Left.

  • matt2||

    The left? Get your facts straight, guy.

    I stated my position. The hipsters are idiots. The cop overreacted. Everyone involved seems like a jerk.

    Your Team Red blinders are showing. There are more viewpoints out there than the dichotomy that your T-Rex brain comprehends.

  • ||

    "The left? Get your facts straight, guy."

    It was meant as "I expect this kind equivalence bullshit from the Left, not Libertarians"

    "The hipsters are idiots. The cop overreacted."

    Sure. And yet you spend most of your energy bitching about the cop. "the hipsters are idiots BUT..."

  • matt2||

    The word "but" appears nowhere in any of my comments on this thread. Sweet straw man, guy.

  • ||

    It doesn't need to. Your outrage it directly entirely on the cop. As for the perps who started it, the most you'll muster is "they might have gotten what they deserved". Which was what? Nothing.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Typical "I'm better than you mere civilians" bullshit.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Fen, you really do believe you're better than us little people, don't you?

  • ||

    Dont cry little man.

    And stop bleeding in public. You're a disgrace

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I don't go around claiming to be a cop.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Why don't you just shoot him, Fen? He's disagreeing with you, and you're better than he is - or so you think.

  • LJM||

    It's futile to argue with an authoritarian who is frightened by snowballs.

  • ||

    The arriving units were backup, responding to his call of "officer under attack".

    I'm surprised they didn't all fall down laughing.

  • Neu Mejican||

    FTW!

  • ||

    From one of my fellow friends..."As far as drawing your weapon... well having been in those police shoes myself, there were many times I have drawn my weapon. For instance, going to a burglary or home invasion or an alarm call... I clear the building with my weapon drawn (I don't wait until I run into the bad guy to draw down); or how about when you believe you may have a felonious stop (yes traffic stop)... I draw my weapon if I believe a deadly threat may exist. Domestics, robberies, homicides, barricaded gunmen,,, all dangerous situations to walk into - though it may seem a little excessive to some who haven't been in similar situations, it's really just being cautious & sometimes the difference between life & death."

  • ||

    Nice post, but its the experts here at Reason that get to determine the threat risk.

  • hmm||

    Actually the risk and threat level along with escalation are generally set in protocol.

    If this moron is threatened by snowballs he needs a new line of work without a gun.

  • ||

    Personally, I don't think Detective Baylor felt physically threatened. I think he believed he was going to frighten the snowball tossers into compliance by brandishing his weapon.

  • ||

    I don't think that's an illegitimate act, considering "compliance" in this case simply means "stop throwing shit at people and vehicles who aren't party to your little playtime".

  • ||

    Are you really so stupid to believe a DC Police Dtective was thereatened by snowballs?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    1. He was from Maryland, which means he was out of his jurisdiction.

    2. He pulled his gun, which means he THOUGHT he was "thereatened".

    3. You're a dick.

  • ||

    From behing their keyboards, of course.

  • ||

    From behind their keyboards, of course.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    You've been misrepresenting yourself as a cop until just recently, Fen, so we should take anything you have said, or will say, as utter bullshit.

    Not that it wasn't anyway.

  • ||

    I never implied I was a cop.

    You're just making shit up again.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Yes you did. You came swaggering into this thread pretending to be end-all knowledge-packed about cop procedures, and what you would do based on your sham persona.

    Near as I can tell, your ONLY redeeming quality is having served in the military - unless you're lying about that as well.

  • ||

    None of those examples strikes me as excessive.

    And none of them even included snow.

    -10pts

  • ||

    Fen has a valid point...who determines what is a threat??? Who should determine what is a threat??? Isn't this the reason why the ROE for our troops are so screwed up? A bunch of bureaucrats in DC determining for troops in the field what is and is not a threat. Yeah, this incident isn't on the battlefield in Iraq, but the premise has merit. The cop may have overreacted in some eyes, but to dismiss any threat that he may have perceived is, IMO, wrong.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Fen said he'd just shoot the snowballers. Might want to keep that in mind.

    Sure, we could turn into a society that jails jaywalkers and people who don't remove their yard-sale signs in a timely fashion... but would that make things better?

  • ||

    I can certainly see going into a situation with gun drawn where there is a significant probability of encountering an armed perpetrator. I think the unknowns in that case warrant such an action.

    That's not the case here. Detective Baylor wasn't confronted with a mob threatening him with anything resembling deadly harm or even so much as a welt. The worst he was looking at was a slush ball down the back. That risk does not warrant an armed response.

  • ||

    All gleaned from your years of experience on the street and what you saw on youtube.

    At least you now admit there ARE situations where a cop is allowed to draw his weapon.

  • ||

    "That's not the case here. The worst he was looking at was- "

    Your the guy who claimed the cop was "most certainly waving his firearm around..at 0:16"

    So any analysis you offer is suspect.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    You're a guy who claimed to be a cop, so why should we listen to you?

  • ||

    You don't throw ANYTHING at cops. This is just a bunch of Obama pussies who have no respect for anything or anyone. What's next ? Throwing snowballs at anyone in uniform ? Would these creeps throw snowballs at servicemen returning from Afghanistan ? Would any of those throwing snowballs trade their jobs for the policeman's job ? Grow up - nothing better to do in life except harass others ? Couldn't possibly pick up a snow shovel ?

  • ||

    And lets not forget how quick these little innocents were to shout "Fuck you PIG!"

    Just your everyday friendly snowball fight. Sure.

  • ||

    More feedback from a buddy..."It's very hard to comment based on an article as short as that. They are always biased and always lack "all" the facts. I was not in the officers shoes that day at that particular time. However, I can tell you this, each law enforcement agency has policies dictating when they can draw their firearm. At GRPD we are authorized to draw our firearm when the officer is in fear of their safety. Each officer makes a decision whether or not to draw their firearm based on the perceived threat. Would I personally draw my firearm when the only threat I have heard or seen is a snowball...NO! But did someone yell "shoot him", "get your gun", "stab him", etc etc... "Lethal force" is firing the weapon not drawing it. Lethal force could also be clubbing someone in the head, or running them over with your cruiser. Drawing a firearm is not even close to lethal force."

  • ||

    Those people were all wearing bulky clothing.

    You know who else wears bulky clothing?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Charlie Brown in the winter?

  • Thirsty||

    "That's a dynamite vest, Charlie Brown."

  • Dept. of Homeland Security||

    This comment just put you on our domestic terrorist watchlist, Thirsty.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Drug dealers?

    Full-figured gals?

    Hitler?

  • ||

    You know who i want to blame? The people who actually were there just for the fun. "Hey, buddy, don't throw em at cars. We're all here to have a good time."

    And if they wouldn't stop, then you get the fun-having part of the crowd to pelt the shit out them till the assholes go home.

  • ||

    the problem is, there we some in the crowd that threw snowballs at hummers as part of an environmental agenda disguised as simple fun.

    http://ownthepress.com/

    Even bragging about prior run ins with the law. This guy is a cop AND drives a hummer...two strikes against him.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    He still overreacted by drawing his gun.

  • ||

    In our opinion he overreacted, but what about his opinion? I'm just saying not to destroy the man...let IA determine if he was right or wrong.

  • Thirsty||

    its the experts here at Reason that get to determine the threat risk.

    Soooo cloooose.

  • hmm||

    I bet his wallet says "Bad Motherfucker" on it. Or at least it does in his mind.

  • ||

    let IA determine if he was right or wrong.

    That's quite the nail-biter; I'm on the edge of my seat.

  • ||

    This is a classic case of what happens when 2 assholes collide.
    The kids should have not been throwing snowball across a busy street, and the cop should have never allowed it to escalate beyond, yellin at the kids to watch where they are throwing.

  • ||

    Was Detective Baylor subjected to blood and alcohol tests, following this episode?

    If not, why not?

  • hmm||

    I blame the violent snowball fight games.

    I almost unloaded a magazine into the monitor when that evil bitch in the front row hit me with a snowball.

  • ||

    One thing is certain: the punk who nailed the gun-toting cop right in the face got a month's worth of nookie last night from his female envirowacko friends.

    There's no justice.

  • ||

    Thanks for bringing that up...he's probably with the chic from Massey Media right now drafting up the civil complaint.

  • alan||

    When he wakes up with a face full of armpit and has to pick her hairs out of his teeth, there might be some justice.

  • ||

    Hummers and Snowballs don't mix.

  • ||

    Some good comments made me think. Like John's explanation on why a snowball can be so dangerous.

    I am still torn on the cop taking his weapon out but maybe some personal experience can explain somethings.

    I spent two years as a Deputy Sheriff and over a decade working as security for bars and private security for entertainers.

    I have approached more than a few crowds many times people were just having fun and things escalate. I have broken up hundreds of fights between friends that started out as playful shoving matches.

    Because this video was edited and the audio was not that clear we have no real idea why the officer might have felt in danger.

    It would have been real easy for one of the snowballs lobbed at him to have been a brick.

    If this man was a private citizen and stepped out of his Hummer to ask the crowd to stop or be careful who knows what would have happened.

    You can easily say that if he felt in danger maybe he shouldn't get out. I think to many people take this approach and that is why people will get mugged on a crowded subway.

    On the other hand I have a friend who suffered a broken orbital and scratched cornea because he had the audacity to tell four guys kicking the shit out of someone that,"He's had enough."

    Crowds are uncertain even if they are just "having fun". It is obvious that a bad element showed up to an innocent snowball fight.

    Lot of grey in this story.

  • hmm||

    Grey area? Unless the majority of the people are lying, the organized flash mob is a lie, and there was actually something going on other than some thug with a gun and a badge trying to play hard ass because his Hummer caught a snowball then ya there might be some gray area.

    People get mugged on subways because of an entirely different set of social reasons. This guy had all the means of a DC police officer to handle the situation, training, radio, badge, backup and so on. He chose to get out, instigate, and draw a weapon. Three poor decisions in a row. I think his ego needs to lose it's badge and gun.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    "Organized flash mob" is an oversimplification, and even though I still say Baylor shouldn't have drawn his weapon, the situation sure looked like mutual escalation to me.

  • hmm||

    Actual that is what I have been told by three people now. (I know way too many hippie retards.) It was an organized flash mob snowball fight. Just like all the other silly flash mob things.

  • ||

    I'm not familiar with what "flash mob" is, or how it excuses throwing projectiles at strangers. Enlightenment?

  • ||

    I really question your ability to read. I said that it seemed most of the crowd was just having a harmless snowball fight but the assholes who started to throw snowballs at cars and people not involved are to blame.

    You also left out the little part I wrote about approaching a mob of people and how quickly things can turn ugly.

    You all seem to think that throwing a few snowballs is harmless. Fine maybe loose packed snowballs are harmless but exit your vehicle and get repeatedly hit in the head with snowballs not knowing if the next snowball is a rock, brick, or bottle and tell me how safe you would feel.

    Some of the people there may have known this was a Flash Mob event but how can a guy driving down the road getting hit with objects(yes snowballs but God knows what else it "could" be) have any knowledge of this.

    Put yourself in the cops place. Driving along and there is a mob of people, reason for concern number one. Your vehicle starts getting hit with objects, reason for concern number two. Get out and you are now blinded by a hail of snowballs when you are trying to figure out what the hell is going on, reason for concern number three.

    It is all harmless until someone gets hurt and with the disregard some of the people were showing that was bound to happen.

    If you wanna have a snowball fight go to a park or school field where people are not going to be involved in your "fun and games" do dumbshit in public, endanger others and get what you deserve.

  • ||

    "He chose to get out, instigate -"

    You don't know that. All the videos conveniently cut the parts that show WHY the policeman pulled over in the first place.

    So you want his badge and gun based on a biased and incomplete video. And then you have the gall to talk about poor decision making.

    You're watching a video thats been cut.

  • ||

    Hmmm... nice Hummer. Anybody know what the average DC cop makes annually?

    (Presumably, it's extremely, absurdly high...)

  • hmm||

    looks like 50kish to start.

  • Edwin||

    It'a amazing how many retards here are defending the cop.

    I'm one of the most pro-cops-using-force guys you'll meet, and even I can see that this cop was a retard.

    Seriously, I watch Cops on TV, and I always think to myself "I would just billy club that asshole" whenever all the druggies start getting rowdy and resisting arrest. But even I can see this cop was being a douche.

    This was a snowball fight. There is nothing that could have happened that could have made the cop feel he is in a situation where a gun would truly be necessary.

    The ONLY way he could remotely be in the right is if some CRAZY shit happened that didn't come out in the video. The video as it is clearly shows the crowd only throwing snowballs at him after he was douchy enough to draw a weapon.

    And I don't care if he wasn't directly pointing the gun at anyone or if the rules cops have to go by say they can draw their guns in less than potentially lethal situations. If the rules say that and the cop theoretically didn't do anything wrong according to those rules, THEN HE STILL ACTUALLY DID SOMETHING WRONG AND THE RULES ARE STUPID. Last I checked, laws are supposed to be REASONABLE. Cops are SUPPOSED to be there to PROTECT society, not act like assholes.

    And unholstering a weapon most certainly IS threatening. You don't need to point it at anyone or verbally warn anyone of anything - once you pull a gun out, unless you're hunting or at a gun range or discussing/showing off guns, you're THREATENING people with the gun. We're not talking about a screwdriver or even a small kinfe here - the options of what you can do with a gun are pretty fucking limited.

  • ||

    "I watch Cops on TV, and... The ONLY way he could remotely be in the right is if "

    Priceless

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    You're not a cop, Fen, despite passing yourself off AS a cop until you confessed to lying upthread.

  • Edwin||

    the point wasn't that I'm passing myself off as someone who would know something about law enforcement procedure - my point is that I'm the last guy to complain about cops going "overboard" unlike many of the libertarians here, and even I can see this guys is out of line

  • ||

    And really, you should avoid using the word "retard"

  • STEVE SMITH||

    ONLY HUMMER CAN FIT STEVE SMITH IF STEVE SMITH HUMMER HAD BEEN PELTED BY SNOW BALLS STEVE SMITH WOULD HAVE GOT OUT OF HUMMER STUFFED THE CROWD INTO THE HUMMER AND LIFTED HUMMER BY THE BACK END AND RAPED THE HUMMER WITH THE CROWD TRAPPED INSIDE! NO JUSTICE GREATER THAN SASQUATCH JUSTICE!

  • ||

    I also have to say that many of you are using information you have gathered from other sources after the fact. This is information the cop didn't have.

    Could he have handled it better? Yes, of course but he only had a limited knowledge of the events that lead up to the video.