Police Abuse

We Live in a World Where Experts Say the Shooting of Tamir Rice Was 'Reasonable'

The cop's life is the only one that matters, even if the threat is nonexistent.

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Tamir Rice
Justice for Tamir Rice

When a grand jury decides whether to indict officers Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback for the murder of 12-year-old Tamir Rice in a park in Cleveland last winter, they will consider two independent reports, commissioned by the prosecutor's office, which reached the same conclusion: the use of deadly force was "objectively reasonable."

This means that under the law, in the opinion of two investigators, Loehmann did nothing wrong when he shot a teen—who was armed with only an airsoft gun—within seconds of encountering him.

According to the first report, compiled by S. Lamar Sims, a Colorado prosecutor:

"There can be no doubt that Rice's death was tragic and, indeed, when one considers his age, heartbreaking. However, for all of the reasons discussed herein, I conclude that Officer Loehmann's belief that Rice posed a threat of serious physical harm or death was objectively reasonable as was his response to that perceived threat."

And the second report, written by a retired FBI agent named Kimberly Crawford:

"According to the Supreme Court, the standard that must be used to evaluate a law enforcement officer's use of deadly force is one of objective reasonableness. The question is not whether every officer would have reacted the same way. Rather, the relevant inquiry is whether a reasonable officer, confronting the exact same scenario under identical conditions could have concluded that deadly force was necessary. Based on the proceeding discussion, and in light of my training and experience, it is my conclusion that Officer Loehmann's use of deadly force falls within the realm of reasonableness under the dictates of the Fourth Amendment."

People who have seen the full video footage, or read about the other troubling details, might wonder how anyone could possibly reach the conclusion that the shooting was justified. To review: a tipster told the police dispatcher that Rice was playing with a "probably fake" gun, but this detail was not relayed to the responding officers; rather than approaching from a distance, Garmback parked his vehicle nearly on top of Rice; Loehmann—an officer-in-training who was fired from a previous police job because of incompetence with firearms—pulled the trigger before Rice could properly react to the situation, ostensibly because the teen reached for the fake gun he was carrying inside his waistband; both cops allowed Rice to bleed on the ground for several minutes, doing nothing until an FBI agent turned up; they prevented Rice's sister from helping him, instead handcuffing her and placing her in the squad car while her brother's life drained away.

But according to the reports, it doesn't matter whether the shooting seems justified in hindsight—it only matters whether a reasonable officer, in the same position as Loehmann, would have reacted in the same way. In other words, the multitude of factors suggesting the cops should have refrained from shooting Rice add up to nothing. The only thing that matters is Loehmann's own subjective view of the threat to his own person. That threat was nonexistent, but Loehmann didn't see it that way, which makes the shooting justified in the opinion of the only person who counts.

Over at his blog, Simply Justice, Scott Greenfield laments that the conclusion in the Rice case is foregone because of the Supreme Court's deference to paranoid policing:

By eliminating from consideration any bit of information that didn't support the murder of Tamir Rice, you end up with a report that says killing him was reasonable. By applying caselaw that bends over backward to preclude any view that wasn't the killer's, there can be only one objectively reasonable conclusion. …

You don't see it? I don't see it? We don't count. We're not trained to see what a cop's eye sees.

Greenfield points out that despite the investigators' exhausting efforts to explain away inconvenient details as irrelevant to Loehmann's parsing of the situation, there is still one nontrivial fact that goes unaddressed: the cops never gave Rice verbal instructions before killing him:

Even so, there was one stumbling block that Sims and Crawford were constrained to fudge, that in the one to two seconds between Loehmann jumping out of the car and leaving a dead boy on the ground, there was no shout of "freeze" or "hands up." There was no order with which Tamir Rice refused to comply.

Much like the John Crawford case—in which an officer gunned down a man for carrying a pellet rifle inside a Wallmart that sold those very weapons—the totality of the circumstances just don't apply. Crawford's killers claimed they gave him orders that he ignored, but the video evidence established that they shot the man immediately, just like Rice. Crawford's grand jury declined to indict the cops, even though Crawford's family could credibly show that the officers lied about their justification for shooting him.

Those who want justice for Rice should gird themselves for disappointment. In the eyes of the law, only one person's life matters—irrespective of the actual threat to that life—and it certainly isn't the 12-year-old boy's.

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  1. I hope they suffer with the knowledge they murdered an innocent child for no fucking reason whatsoever.
    fuck these assholes

    1. I hope they suffer with the knowledge they murdered an innocent child for no fucking reason whatsoever.

      Nah, they won’t. Imagine them blocking it out with the “as long as every cop gets home safe” mantra.

      1. Looks like those “No More Hesitation” targets are working.

      2. Surely we can rely on the proven competency and expertise of American prosecutors in determining what is reasonable. Furthermore, when someone reaches for a gun, even if it is “probably” fake, there is a chance it is not fake, and so it is indeed objectively reasonable to shoot at the person who reached for it, just like it’s objectively reasonable to shoot a Palestinian terrorist waving a knife in the air. Everyone knows this, and to argue the contrary is merely to be a contrarian.

        Similarly, even if an audience of foolish academics would probably commit the error of recognizing certain excessively deadpan email impersonations as a satirical hoax designed to call attention to allegations of plagiarism, since there is always a chance such impersonations were intended to “harm a reputation” rather than merely to cause “momentary embarrassment and discomfort,” it is reasonable for prosecutors to summarily set aside the so-called free speech and due process rights of the impersonator until he meets his burden of proving beyond a reasonable doubt that his intent was only to cause momentary embarrassment, etc. See the documentation of America’s leading criminal satire case at:

        http://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpress.com/

        1. Shut up, asshole. Go peddle your cop cock-sucking rhetoric elsewhere.

          1. Your words seem to display certain violent emotions, in a manner that may or may not be legal, depending on the jurisdiction, on precisely how the First Amendment is appropriately limited in its reach (as we all agree it must be), and on what your exact intent is. Are you troubled by the simple fact that some things are objectively reasonable? If so, perhaps you should consider that we need a strong America, with a limper form of freedom?one that allows all citizens to express themselves in an appropriate manner; and that with this goal in view, we need to make it absolutely clear that any form of speech or conduct that crosses the line, that society would do better without, will be met with the violence not of words, but of the law. Read the works of Carl Schmidt, they will offer you some guidance with respect to the America we are doing our best to construct despite some of the rabble out there.

            1. Of course what I wrote is legal, you stupid fuckwit. Eat your mom’s twat.

          2. Dude, the rules that apply to cops apply to you too. So if some kid with a “gun” in his waistband walks onto your property and reaches for it, should you required to wait and figure out if it is a toy?

            1. This insightful comment would appear to be directed to Mr. Falcon. Of property I myself would have none, but if someone were to reach into his waistband within range of me, I would verily have at him with my lance?it being quite clear that there is no difference between a gun and a “gun,” just as there is no difference between inappropriately deadpan “parody” and impersonation of the most wicked sort.

        2. Are you referring to the Palestinian woman who was holding sunglasses? Moreover you are standing up for a group of people who kill innocent civilians all day every day throughout the United States at taxpayer expense. And considering that police murders are extremely rare but their intrusions into peoples’ lives are not it would suggest that you are a statist, therefore the most dangerous type of individual alive regardless of your intellect.

          Heh and you suggest that it is reasonable to shoot at someone who appears to be reaching for something. Thats rich.

          American prosecutors do what is good for them. They rely on the police to maintain for them a steady flow of people to exploit. Those police exploit the people, not unlike yourself, at gun point. Those thugs with guns constantly use those guns without provocation and are constantly given paid vacations for their troubles. Or maybe you haven’t read “Overkill: The rise of paramilitary police raids in America.”

          Police are caught lying again and again to cover their asses when they get called out. Prosecutors back them up. You sir are blind.

          If you are the least bit interested in understanding the nature of the beast that you defend so eloquently maybe you should check out “Lies the FBI told me” by James Corbett or draw some real experience from the plethora of history of statism and people who support the most dangerous superstition. Oh yeah you should read that too. “The Most Dangerous Superstition” by Larkin Rose.

          1. No wonder you have been Banished, because your jesting words are far too deadpan, and could lead some gullible readers to lose confidence in our public authorities and in the forces of order that allow our great nation to continue striding forward on the path to vigor and gentrification. These titles you cite sound like foolish satires to me; clearly they should be excluded from our public libraries and otherwise suppressed by whatever means necessary, even if the “First Amendment” technically allows for their existence.

    2. I hope they suffer with the knowledge they murdered an innocent child for no fucking reason whatsoever.

      We’re talking about sociopaths here. Much like people with autism, they are psychologically incapable of conceptualizing the inner mental states of other people. Therefore, they do not experience what are known as “social emotions” (e.g. guilt, envy, shame, love, empathy, pride…); they only know pain and pleasure. So while they possess the knowledge they murdered an innocent, they feel nothing whatsoever as they do not possess the capacity.

      1. Autism is a spectrum. All autistic persons are not ‘incapable’ of conceptualizing the inner mental states of others. Harder and in many cases, much harder, but not incapable for the most part.

        1. Fair enough, but I also take that as evidence of the fact that the definition of autism as been stretched too far in recent years.

      2. Come one. The bit about Autism is not true. If anything, autistics feel more and often have more problems with communicating their thoughts, feelings, etc. They aren’t sociopaths. Gah. Sorry. My son is extremely empathetic and caring. Please don’t compare sociopaths to autistics.

    3. They wouldn’t be cops who gun down kids without a thought or a warning if they weren’t already pants-shitting sociopaths. They’ll sleep well knowing they got off.

    4. Those sociopaths probably sleep quite soundly at night, comfortable with the knowledge that they made it home that night. That’s all they care about.

    5. I met a girl that sang the blues
      And I asked her for some happy news
      But she just smiled and turned away

    6. Amen.

      /turns woodchipper on.

    7. “I hope they suffer with the knowledge they murdered an innocent child for no fucking reason whatsoever.”

      No fucking reason? Au contraire.

      BFYTW.

    8. You’re delusional. Sociopaths don’t suffer from guilt because narcissism is part of their pathology. Other people aren’t really “people”, just the sociopath.

      They may be sub-human, but they certainly know how to play the game.

  2. Basically, what they did was define the circumstances so narrowly that they didn’t consider anything other than whether it was “reasonable” for a cop within a few feet of somebody with a look-alike gun to shoot.

    They just . . . edited out . . . the fact that these cops rolled right up to being within a few feet of someone who they suspected of being armed.

    Out here in prole-land, this would be like saying that a home invader confronted with an armed homeowner would be justified in gunning the homeowner down, because at that instant the home invader was being threatened, and nothing that led up to that instant is relevant.

    1. I would see it more as a homeowner ran out into the middle of the street to confront someone who might or might not be armed, shooting them in the street– because they might invade the home.

  3. “which reached the same conclusion: the use of deadly force was “objectively reasonable.””

    I wonder if they understand the consequences of reaching this conclusion.

    If this is acceptable and reasonable in our current justice system, the only remaining option is to burn the whole thing down and start from scratch.

    1. If police officers are wont to execute people with no provocation like they did Rice, I think it would be “objectively reasonable” for any person confronted with an armed police officer to fear for his own life…and respond appropriately.

      1. Covered under “burn the whole thing down”.

    2. Well, what they really ought to consider is that if you establish the precedent that police effectively have carte blanche to use lethal force without warning you’ve now created an environment in which it makes the most sense for non-police to shoot cops on sight. If the moment after a cop shows interest in you he or she may open fire on you then it’s reasonable to shoot first; if you don’t, you risk being killed where you stand. By making police the most dangerous class of people the average person is likely to encounter on a daily basis–and reinforcing that danger by giving them the unconditional support of the legal system–you make policing more dangerous.

    3. “objectively reasonable”

      As opposed to subjectively reasonable?

      Weasel words if I ever saw them.

      1. Yeah, I saw that on the news last night and laughed out loud. “Objectively reasonable.” I guess there’s no arguing against it! It is objectively reasonable.

      2. And everyone, here, was just so giddy, recently, over the use of “substantive due process” to override the Ninth and Tenth amendments.
        You want to talk about “weasel words”?

    4. You have to realize our “justice system”, since it is more and more populated by sociopaths, is becoming more sociopathic itself. The people who inhabit it don’t see what you’re seeing, because they can’t. They’re literally not mentally equipped to do so.

      Yes, if this continues to be the case, it will get to the point where the majority of non-sociopaths can no longer stand it and will do something like burn it down. Because it’s inhuman.

      1. How much money would you bet that this bint is a prosecutor?

        Assuming, of course, she’s telling the truth as opposed to writing a Penthouse Letter for intellectuals.

        1. She’s a moronic narcissist. No true sociopath like that would ever tell you about it in such “honest” terms. Yeah, she probably is a prosecutor, sounds exactly right.

          1. Googling more, she got outed 2 years ago.

            Supposedly, she has big titties.

      2. Yes, if this continues to be the case, it will get to the point where the majority of non-sociopaths can no longer stand it and will do something like burn it down. Because it’s inhuman.

        This is why we need common sense gun laws now, before the natives get too restless.

    5. , the only remaining option is to burn the whole thing down and start from scratch.

      I would choose a more radical and dramatic restructuring plan, but I can accept this as a compromise.

    6. Aaaand, you show why libertine-arians aren’t given any kind of respect in the rational world.
      Grow up!

      1. If growing up means standing idly by while the police become frequent and routine murderers of innocents, then I choose to never grow up.

        This talk of burning it all down is actually quite mature. If you read Richard Dawkins’ “The Selfish Gene,” he talks about “evolutionarily stable equilibriums/strategies” and illustrates this with hawks and doves in a population.

        Here, we are talking about which ESE “set point” we want our society to be at. Do we want an equilibrium where we have 90% of the cops are good guys and 10% of the cops are sociopathic murderers or do we want an ESE set point where we have 40% of the cops are good guys and 60% of the cops are sociopathic murderers?

        Much of the world can be classified in one of these two ESEs. Mexico? Almost certainly bad cops outnumber good. The USA? Certainly good cops outnumber bad.

        What these guys are talking about when they say “burn it down” is that if our society reaches the wrong ESE set point, it’s time to force a quantum leap over to a new ESE set point.

        That is quite intelligent and brave and mature.

  4. Those two cops should be dragged through the streets naked and hung from a lamppost in front of the police station, as an encouragement to their co-workers.

  5. Those two cops should be dragged through the streets naked and hung from a lamppost in front of the police station, as an encouragement to their co-workers.

    1. Twice? Starting to get to cruel and unusual territory.

      1. Oh, so now we care about the constitution?

    2. Subpoena incoming.

  6. Regardless of whether the shooting was justified, how is this waved off?

    both cops allowed Rice to bleed on the ground for several minutes, doing nothing until an FBI agent turned up; they prevented Rice’s sister from helping him, instead handcuffing her and placing her in the squad car while her brother’s life drained away.

    Is that “objectively reasonable”, too? Next time somebody bleeding out shows up in my ED, can we just dump them in a corner until they die, without consequence?

    1. Are you a cop? If not, then no.

    2. officer (career) safety

    3. He wasn’t a person, RC. Or a kid. He was a “perp”. Therefore not human. Therefore it’s ok to let him bleed to death. See now?

      Neither do I.

      1. Epi has this exactly right. A perp is an untermensch.

        At this point, I think they’re considered unterhunden.

    4. Helping him would have left witnesses to the shooting alive.

      1. 10 points for you.

        Shootings are much easier to explain when the victim is dead.

    5. No wonder you have Erectile Dysfunction if you are seeing bleeding people show up there.

      1. Really, Pope? Dick jokes?

        1. egould310: Pope, not only is what you’re saying not true, it is wrong and disrespectful for you to discuss dicks in that way.
          Pope Jimbo: Wait, hold on here. Is this Hit & Run? Is this Hit &Run;? If we can’t talk straight in Hit & Run, then where can we talk straight? We can’t talk straight nowhere else. You know, this ain’t nothin’ but healthy conversation, that’s all.

        2. Dick jokes are the rock upon which the Church is built.

    6. He might’ve had something contagious, & they didn’t have gloves.

  7. …it only matters whether a reasonable officer, in the same position as Loehmann, would have reacted in the same way. In other words, the multitude of factors suggesting the cops should have refrained from shooting Rice add up to nothing.

    And given that we know all police are under the threat of immediate attack in this war upon their ranks, a reasonable officer – judged against general LEO mindset – not only would shoot without warning as he exits his vehicle but must do so.

    1. Look, the fact that he got out of his car at all rather than just plowing it into Tamir Rice at full speed demands a commendation for bravery.

    2. and the cycle continues….

    3. So now it’s established that driving up and shooting a 12 yo kid without warning is reasonable, other cops can use this case to justify shooting 4th graders who jaywalk towards them. Using this line of reasoning, all police shootings are reasonable by definition until some cop stops just before shooting someone for jaywalking, and says “This is insane”..

  8. And since when are reports about the propriety of what cops do, that are written by prosecutors and retired cops, “independent” reports, anyway?

    1. they will consider two independent reports, commissioned by the prosecutor’s office,

      This is the worst part of this, that the media will not report how fucking rare it is that the prosecutors office gives a rat’s ass about the defendant’s side of the story – except when the defendant is a cop. And then when they point to how “full and fair” the grand jury investigation was, the media goes right along with it without pointing out, screaming from the rooftops as they properly should be, that nobody except a cop gets to present his side of the story to a grand jury. Everybody should know that a prosecutor can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich (and that a cop getting a warrant is just as much a slam dunk) because a grand jury only determines whether or not a prosecutor has probable cause to believe he can prosecute a case and that’s based solely on whatever evidence the prosecutor chooses to present to the grand jury. If a prosecutor is making the defense’s case to a grand jury, even allowing the grand jury to catch one glimpse of the defense’s case, he’s throwing the case and the media should be reporting that.

    2. Well, since a former police officer has had to face such a situation, or had to contemplate what they might do if faced with one, AND NONE OF YOU ASSHOLES HAS, they are in a far better position to decide.
      20/20 hindsight from your Monday morning quarterback chair put you in ZERO position to be able to judge.

      1. I guess you missed the video of this event…..you should probably STFU.

      2. They shot a child – the reasons for that might be debatable. But the fact that they just let him bleed out afterwards is enough to damn them. There is no freaking excuse to not render medical assistance at that point.

      3. Fuck you, statist pig-fuck. You’re fucking terrible. I hope you get AIDS.

  9. Skwerlz concur.
    it cannot be said often enough.

  10. If you believe as I do that one purpose, maybe the primary purpose, of the 2nd amendment is to enshrine the right of citizens to defend themselves against the state, then you’d be hard pressed to find a better example of its appropriate use than this. Two cops murdered a kid in cold blood, and then “experts”–not a jury–decided it wasn’t murder. I’m not sure you can come up with a clearer example of the state essentially permitting the murder of citizens by its agents. I’m not advocating violence, but episodes like this sparked the American revolution.

    1. Hell, the British soldiers involved in the Boston Massacre were brought to trial. We can’t even get that far.

      1. And they were responding to a genuinely hostile threat, not a 12-year-old kid playing in the park.

    2. You talk about the 2a. Recognize that the kid’s only crime, as far as we can tell, was having a weapon on him. What have we learned? We have the right to bear arms, but only as long as there are not police (or other members of the ruling class) around.

  11. Why didn’t they just get a note from Loehman’s mother saying he was a fraidy cat?

  12. “Any reasonable officer would have killed this kid.”

    “Gee, why all the anti-cop sentiment?”

    1. Cue all the upcoming articles in the NY Post and City Journal lamenting the growing air of anti-cop hysteria.

  13. Totality of circs, procedures followed

    *booyah*

    1. What ever happened to Dunphy? You think he lost his internet privileges at the institute?

  14. OT: As you might have heard, a school in Connecticut has banned Halloween celebrations. Now according to the story:

    a letter sent to parents that said the decision “arose out of numerous incidents of children being excluded from activities due to religion, cultural beliefs, etc.”

    So, I see two equally likely scenarios:

    A.) These “incidents” are bullshit and the school administrators are using nameless, faceless brown people as a shield for their own ideological agenda (Sounds familiar.)

    B.) The Religion of Peace (TM) strikes again.

    What say you?

    1. By “excluded”, I assume they mean “opted out”, because I seriously doubt the school had a policy prohibiting anyone from participating.

      I’m curious: if a school bans an activity because it is offensive to a religious group, how is that not an “establishment of religion”?

      1. That’s a good question.

      2. In addition to the parades being canceled, students are forbidden from wearing costumes.

        Yes, I assume this means on school grounds.

        1. Yes, I assume this means on school grounds.

          For now…

      3. Depends; is the group in question Christian?

    2. I say if you are sending your kid to public school, you’re just going to have to deal with government shitheels.

      And frankly, why am I paying for your kids fucking Halloween parade?

      1. I say if you are sending your kid to public school, you’re just going to have to deal with government shitheels.

        This is true; beggars can’t be choosers. That having been said, as said taxes are extorted from the parents under threat of deadly force, I can’t blame them too much.

      1. I agree.

    3. Consider
      C) Christian fundies and their belief in Devils and the worship thereof.

      1. C) Christian fundies and their belief in Devils and the worship thereof.

        It’s not impossible, and if this happened in the Bible Belt, that would be where my money was. However, knowing Milford, I don’t think its very likely.

    4. Schools “ban” Christmas celebrations because a certain group doesn’t like it, I don’t see how this is any different.

      1. Christmas is a religious holiday. Halloween is not.

        1. Never heard of All Hallows’ Eve, have you?

          Like Christmas, Halloween has developed many secular aspects, but it’s historical roots are partly Christian.

          1. Never heard of All Hallows’ Eve, have you?

            No one alive today believes All Hallows’ Eve is a real thing. But all Christians continue to believe December 25th has a deep, religious significance. And they’re usually the main culprits in the War on Halloween.

            1. I’m not sure what you mean by “No one alive today believes All Hallows’ Eve is a real thing”. When I was in Catholic school 18 years ago we went to Church the day before All Saints Day if All Saints Day itself wasn’t on a school day. The 4th grade class would dress up as some saint and tell everyone about them. And we learned that Halloween was rooted in the traditions of All Hallow’s Eve. I suspect kids at that school are still learning the same thing.

              1. The way it was explained to me (but this could be wrong) was that All Hallows’ Eve was the night when ghosts or spirits or something would return to Earth. And the only defense was to dress in scary costumes to scare them back into their realm. As far as I know, no one today dresses up in order to ward off evil spirits.

            2. Evangelicals and Muslims could argue that the celebration of Halloween is as offensive to their religious beliefs as celebration of the supposed day of Jesus’ birth is to Jews. But really its about culture war between the various groups, and I know which group “libertarians” will side with.(Though I still don’t understand why)

              1. Which group will the libertarians side with? I need to know! I really need to know!

            3. Well, for Christians it’s the day before All Saints Day. Which isn’t all that significant, but is still something.

              And then there are the neo-pagans who think it is significant in some way or other. Just because it’s silly and mostly made up out of whole cloth doesn’t make it not a real religion.

              1. real religion

                That term is right up there beside ‘jumbo shrimp’ and ‘military intelligence.’

                1. Well, sure. I don’t think any religion has much in the way of factual basis. But you know what I mean.

              2. mostly true. however, it should be pointed out that the origins of Halloween do predate Christianity, and are based on autumn equinox. much like Christmas correlates with winter solstice. neo-pagans do have a weak hobbled together idea of religion, based on the flashier parts of dozens of old/outdated religions… but the older versions of those holidays does reside in those old pagan religions.

                1. Actually Xmas & Halloween have common roots, & each incorporates practices originally associated w the other. Halloween’s timing is a Julian calendar approximation of mid-autumn, halfway between equinox & solstice. Neopagans put Winter Nights approximately there. Another late development is Nov. 2 as Day of the Dead in Mexico & some of Central Amer.

          2. A pretzel’s historical roots are also partly Christian, but no one considers it to be a foodstuff with religious significance. Halloween has been so secularized that it’s really not the same animal as All Hallow’s Eve. As someone who is not Christian, I have no problem with my daughter participating in Halloween as it is celebrated presently. Furthermore, I couldn’t care less whether it is celebrated in school or not. The fun part is trick or treating, which doesn’t happen at school.

            1. The fun part is all the women dressing provocatively.

              1. I was speaking of the perspective of my daughter, who will never dress provocatively on Halloween as she is entering a nunnery at 11 years of age.

                1. A Buddhist nunnery? Or am I remembering wrong?

      2. You know who else blamed a “certain group” for stuff?

        1. Ta-Nehisi Coates?

        2. Every successful tyrant since the beginning of time.

    5. D) Christians are angry their holidays are no longer celebrated in public schools so they’re using their influence to deny everyone else their beloved holidays. Petty and juvenile payback, and the schools are happy to oblige.

      1. They don’t get Christmas vacation? (I suppose it’s winter vacation now, but we all know damn well that it’s for Christmas.)

        1. They don’t get Christmas vacation?

          Only because the teachers have it in their contract.

    6. What would be their anti-Halloween ideological agenda? Serious question.

      I’m not aware of much of a Muslim population in Milford. My money is on JWs.

      1. What would be their anti-Halloween ideological agenda?

        I swear to fucking God that I’ve read stuff about how Halloween is bad because kids trick or trick in their local neighborhoods, thus the affluent kids get good candy, like chocolate and the poor kids get, I don’t know…candy corn.

        Yes, candy income equality.

        I’m not aware of much of a Muslim population in Milford.

        Like many cities in New England, during the past 2 decades, they’ve seen their fair share of Somalis, mostly, and other refugee populations.

        1. I swear to fucking God that I’ve read stuff about how Halloween is bad because kids trick or trick in their local neighborhoods, thus the affluent kids get good candy, like chocolate and the poor kids get, I don’t know…candy corn.

          oh god

          Like many cities in New England, during the past 2 decades, they’ve seen their fair share of Somalis, mostly, and other refugee populations.

          Yeah, I guess. My money is still on JWs. I know they were the issue when I was growing up several miles down the coast.

          1. My money is still on JWs.

            Other people’s cultures are not costumes! Sexy costumes are unfair to unattractive women! Costumes reinforce negative gender stereotypes. Blah, blah, blah.

            Since they can’t control what kinds of costumes people choose to wear, better to just oppose and abolish the whole thing.

            1. Yes, I forgot about the cultural appropriation thing.

            2. I meant Jehovah’s Witnesses…

              1. Ah…thought you just left the ‘S’ off SJWs.

                Evidently, Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t like uninvited people knocking on their doors…

          2. I’ll concede that JWs are in the running too. Evangelicals too, I guess.

        2. Look, nobody NEEDS candy

        3. I swear to fucking God that I’ve read stuff about how Halloween is bad because kids trick or trick in their local neighborhoods,

          Uhh, we always drove to nice neighborhoods. Of course I lived on a farm, trick or treating the intended way would net me 3 houses and some fresh eggs in about an hour. Condo developments were gold mines. My 5yo is finally taking Halloween seriously with respect to candy income instead of just dressing like a princess. We are going to rake it in this year. UHH I MEAN SHE, yeah she is going to rake it in.

          It’s called the “daddy took you trick or treating tax” honey, now hand over the Twix

          1. It’s a trap. They’re all Twix!

          2. Silly wabbit- everyone knows Twix are for kids!

      2. I agree with Nicole. Yes, I know, it sickens me too.

    7. There has to be some candy-phobic health nazi in this story somewhere.

    8. Given that “numerous incidents of children being excluded” thing, I would guess it’s hard-shell Baptist parents keeping their children from participating in the godless heathen pagan devil-worshipping – but it’s odd to think there would be that many hillbilly peckerwood rednecks in Connecticut.

      1. Yeah, there’s aren’t. But there are Jehovah’s Witnesses and they don’t participate either.

      2. As much as it pains me to continue to agree with the worst Nicole, she’s correct. I had kids that lived in a Baptist Camp (there was a huge one in the next town over) in school with me and they never raised a peep about anything like this. Jehovah’s Witnesses were rare, but they made sure they did *not* participate in stuff like this, unlike the Baptists, who didn’t seem to mind.

        1. they did *not* participate in stuff like this

          Which is their right. However, it’s not their right to prevent others from participating. I don’t believe in or participate in their dumb religion, but I don’t care that they do, and I’d never attempt to stop them.

          1. Well, they’re not preventing them, it was the school administrators’ decision. Again, think about it; these are people who, on a daily basis, say shit like “If you didn’t bring enough for the whole class….” Again, if the impetus came from the minority group or whether their existence was just used as an excuse for the school is currently unknown, which is what I asked you all to speculate on.

            1. Bottom line: the squeaky wheel gets the grease. These school administrators are too dumb and lazy to defend their position, so they just eliminate the problem altogether even though that negatively affects more people than if they’d done nothing. Remember, this is the environment where “Zero Tolerance” was born.

    9. Not doing the parade and float is good on the school. Banning kids from coming in costume is stupid. Public school sponsored socialization comes off as really creepy. Especially when it gets mixed up with ‘school spirit’, shudder.

  15. Over at his blog, Simply Justice, Scott Greenfield laments that the conclusion in the Rice case is foregone because of the Supreme Court’s deference to paranoid policing:

    Er, that would be Simple Justice. Great article, too.

    By the way, I’m shocked that a prosecutor and FBI agent would find this shooting justified. Shocked!

    1. A cop and a prosecutor finding what a cop did to be justified? Unheard of!

  16. If this is what a reasonable officer would do, how is this not an admission the police are rabid dogs that are too dangerous to be allowed free in public?

    Saying that this is not the outcome of an officer who panicked in an atrocious and unprofessional manner just gravely indicts what we are told to believe is normal police thought processes.

  17. “Lives were saved.”

    You know, the only lives which matter; cops’.

  18. and in light of my training and experience,

    I found the flaw in the report.

  19. I know that when I perceive something as life threatening I rush to put myself within 5 feet of that threat. Seems totally reasonable.

    1. Funny how the “great peril” that forced the officer to kill Rice was created by the officer’s own action of rushing in to the situation. but yeah, totally reasonable.

    2. Which is what gives the lie to the whole thing.
      It was a rookie hyped up on adrenaline and reruns of TJ Hooker or whatever the kids are watching nowadays.
      He had stars in his eyes. He didn’t feel threatened; he was imagining being the big fucking hero, and shot an innocent kid.

  20. If this is objectively reasonable, then I suppose a police department can, and maybe even should, adopt as policy a requirement that all persons who are suspected of carrying guns be killed on sight.

    I mean, that’s what happened here, isn’t it? And its officially “reasonable”, so how would it not be acceptable as official policy?

    1. Um, they actually do have that policy. We’ve seen several stories, from this one to the one where the guy gets gunned down for carrying the pellet gun in Walmart to countless ones where it’s a cell phone or wallet in their hand but the cops claim it looked like a gun. And nothing ever happens to the cops who shoot the instant they even think they might possibly maybe see a gun.

      The police ranks are populated by pants-shitting coward sociopaths. How can there be any other outcome?

      1. Lazy. Do not forget they are incredibly lazy.

      2. My favorite was the coke can beside the bed of the old guy.

      3. Epi, I was talking about an officially adopted, written policy. Its their practice now, no doubt, but there is a difference between policy and practice.

        1. Plausible Deniability.

          If they told you gun possession was to be punished by summary execution, they’d have a revolution on their hands.

          Instead, they shoot you, wring their hands, and say “It’s too bad he was armed, or this could have been avoided”.

  21. If these fuckers had a shred of moral integrity they’d man the fuck up, issue a public apology, and resign. That’s the bare minimum these fuckers could do. Regardless of whether you think police should get a mulligan for the first “bad shoot” because the job is stressful or whatever, if you shoot and kill a twelve-year-old boy holding a BB gun in an open carry state you have proven that you don’t have the magical powers of judgement that police are supposed to have.

    1. Fuck that. I don’t get one free murder.

    2. Another in a list of possible options would be to allow these cops to continue doing the job but without any firearms. They have proven that they cannot be trusted to make the right judgement call when the chips are down so take their guns away.

  22. objective reasonableness. The question is not whether every officer would have reacted the same way. Rather, the relevant inquiry is whether a reasonable officer, confronting the exact same scenario under identical conditions could have concluded that deadly force was necessary.

    Am I the only one who thinks they are actually talking about subjective reasonableness?

    1. Yeah, Greenfield’s article makes that point too.

    2. And here’s the thing:

      There’s no such thing as “subjective” reasonableness. Reasonableness as a legal test is “what would a reasonable person do under the circumstances.” Its not “Did this person believe they were acting reasonably”. A “reasonableness” test IS the “objective” test.

      The test has been utterly subverted when it comes to cops, of course.

      Even the account of it above (“whether every officer would have reacted the same”) isn’t the reasonableness test. Even including this bizarre and fictional test in a description of how to evaluate the incident is a red herring.

    3. objective reasonableness

      Based upon recent history, it is objectively reasonable to conclude that any homicide committed by a cop is justified unless the victim is also a cop or a senior government official.

  23. both cops allowed Rice to bleed on the ground for several minutes, doing nothing until an FBI agent turned up; they prevented Rice’s sister from helping him, instead handcuffing her and placing her in the squad car while her brother’s life drained away

    Yeah, even if you think the shooting itself was justified, this part is just straight up depraved indifference. And I would think that cops have a legal “duty to act” in that situation.

    Disgusting. One can only hope the grand jury indicts.

  24. I think A sounds most plausible. Perceived liability and a “Let’s get out ahead of this PC stuff and be leaders!” local attitude drives the SJW’s to get involved in screwing up everyone’s fun.

  25. So much for civilian review boards.

  26. Loehmann?an officer-in-training who was fired from a previous police job because of incompetence with firearms?pulled the trigger before Rice could properly react to the situation,

    Remember folks, these details are neither here, nor there!

  27. To review: a tipster told the police dispatcher that Rice was playing with a “probably fake” gun, but this detail was not relayed to the responding officers

    I’m fine with having the dispatcher bear some liability here.

    Why is no one talking about that?

  28. Much like the John Crawford case?in which an officer gunned down a man for carrying a pellet rifle inside a Wallmart that sold those very weapons?the totality of the circumstances just don’t apply. Crawford’s killers claimed they gave him orders that he ignored, but the video evidence established that they shot the man immediately, just like Rice. Crawford’s grand jury declined to indict the cops, even though Crawford’s family could credibly show that the officers lied about their justification for shooting him.

    We need to start keeping track of these officers by name and district. Because they’re still on the force, pulling people over in traffic stops, and interacting with the public. These officers remain on the street.

    1. No, what “we” need to keep track of is the politicians responsible for putting the police chief and police officers on the street, and then “we” need to vote accordingly.

      The “we” here refers to the people actually voting in the city in question. But apparently, to the people of Cleveland, this really isn’t a major political concern, because otherwise they would have gotten rid of their city government and police chief.

      1. “We” do vote accordingly. I’m getting the government and police brutality other people deserve.

        But in seriousness, I agree with you 100%. The more blue the city, the more brutal the police force. My theory is that the progressive philosophy demands it. It’s not an accident.

  29. Criticizing this decision is part of the war on cops.

  30. Michael Brown got more public reaction and breathless press coverage than did Tamir Rice.

    Why?

    discuss.

    1. I want to say it’s just an odd convergence of things that made that story get so much attention while so many others are mostly ignored.

      But deep down I can’t help but wonder if it was chosen deliberately to keep things more divided along racial and political lines.

    2. Why does a certain viral campaign catch on? It’s multicausal and it’s not often things align in such a way that a story really takes off.

    3. Probably because Tamir Rice became associated with the Browns?

      http://www.usatoday.com/story/…../20398331/

      No one wants anything to do with the Browns.

    4. Because a black anti-police activist lived near where Michael Brown died, talked to witnesses and not-really-witnesses, and started the whole bogus “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” meme.

  31. Over at his blog, Simply Justice, Scott Greenfield laments that the conclusion in the Rice case is foregone

    I don’t get this. SCOTUS doesn’t mandate that police use deadly force, they simply say that it doesn’t violate the Constitution. The actual rules under which police operate are set locally, and the criteria for homicide are set at the state level.

    Cleveland is majority African American (including its chief of police) and entirely run by Democrats and greens. Those are the people responsible for setting the rules for when and how police can use deadly force. Apparently, driving up in a police car, pulling out a gun, and shooting people is what Democrats and African Americans want to happen in their city, otherwise they wouldn’t have put these people in power or keep them there.

    I don’t see what any of that has to do with police where I live or why we are talking about “police” as if it was a national institution.

    1. True. There are big differences in how police act between 1 jurisdiction’s & another’s, or even in different admins. in a given jurisdiction. These problems must be tractable.

    2. This is an awful large and obvious point.

    3. Because it is a national institution. The police chief from LA (was it Robert Gates?), was hired by Denver, and brought his philosophy with him.
      The unions are national. The accreditation is national.
      Yes, local officers bring local prejudices and priorities, but the militarization of police forces and their increasing lack of respect for citizens is a national problem, and one being egged on by federal policies and supreme court decisions.

      1. Darryl Gates, if I recall correctly. The father of DARE.

  32. I did hear about this on national news this morning, so that’s good. But how the shit are people still holding up Trayvon Martin and Brown as poster children for BLM, but this poor kid is a footnote?

    I’m not prone to conspiracy theorizing, but it’s hard not to suspect that it is intentional and meant to keep people divided. There are so many very sympathetic victims of police violence out there.

    1. It’s to keep people divided. Jerry Springer doesn’t get rating if everyone has a reasonable discussion and behaves rationally.

      News is entertainment. People throwing chairs gets more eyeballs than people chatting across a table a-la Firing Line.

    2. I assume the Rice shooting simply didn’t achieve critical mass–iirc, it occurred in the midst of the Brown and Garner deaths and wasn’t paid nearly enough attention. However, I also think that race hucksters look for tendentious cases like Brown’s and Martin’s, in which pro-gun groups and conservatives generally are likely to push back given the weight of the evidence against the media narrative. The Rice shooting had few defenders outside the cadre of cops and their apologists who will rationalize anything so long as it has a badge pinned to it.

    3. I think there is a larger political goal here. When activists lionize dimwitted thugs like Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin, they are sending a message that blacks are to be feared. Promoting cases like this don’t serve that goal.

      Of course, that’s a perfect example of a self-defeating strategy, because a major reason why cops shoot young black men is because they are feared (and for good reasons). But political activism is rarely entirely rational.

  33. Cops get away with far too much, amd all cops should be accustomed to an armed citizenry. That said, there are jurisdictions in which the cops have cause to believe than anyone brandishing a gun has it illegally and is up to no good. And every airsoft gun I have seen looked damned convincing.

    They should be crucified for letting him bleed out. They won’t be.

    But while an innocent young man with a tool like a gun should be so common a sight that it doesn’t cause this kind of tragedy, the fact remains that in far too many cities it isn’t.

    1. But even having an illegal gun and being up to no good doesn’t mean someone is an immanent threat and needs to get shot.

      1. Possibly, but i still want to know what that damn airsoft gun looked like. Anybody know?

        1. I bet a reasonable person could have mistaken it for a gun from some distance.

          My point is that even if it had been a big, strong, 23 year old, hardened criminal with a loaded pistol in his waistband, the shooting wouldn’t be justified unless he was actually brandishing it and threatening the cops or someone else.

          1. Are you insane? So if a criminal reaches for a gun in his waist band, I’m not allow to defend myself?

        2. I have read that the gun was realistic and had the orange tip removed, so it was even more realistic. But I think even discussing that risks dampening all the fun around here….

          1. Of course, what the gun looked like is irrelevant because it wasn’t visible to the cops when they opened fire.

            1. it wasn’t visible to the cops when they opened fire.

              And Ohio is an open carry state.

            2. It wasn’t? I thought Rice pulled it out when the cop drove up.

              1. Here’s the video of the shooting, courtesy of the Guardian. 1:06 is when he gets shot. 1:02 is when the car zips onto the scene. Maybe he moves his right hand to his right side waist area as if he was trying to draw the pistol…? It’s hard to tell.

                You could tell me he was trying to get his hands up when he got shot, and you could tell me that he was trying to pull out that airsoft pistol, and from that video, I’d buy either explanation.

                The police have to give people the chance to comply with their orders. It doesn’t look like either officer did that with Rice.

                1. It looks like he was attempting to pull it out.

          2. How could we dampen your fun? You have the corpse of a black child to jerk off to.

            1. Well, aren’t you in a pleasant mood today! You are way off as to my interest in this. I want the truth of these incidents, no matter how mixed and complex they might be. I don’t go in for the simple-minded Team cheerleading, either anti-cop or pro-cop. You seem to prefer to cheerlead for the anti-cop side.

              From Gray Ghost’s link below:

              Officers ordered Tamir to raise his hands and, did not comply, and instead he took the toy gun out of his waistband. At that point the police officers opened fire.

              Emphasis added. A gun that looked like a 1911.

              I am not going to defend every action the cop took, but Tamir Rice looks like yet another Darwin Award winner. No, he did not “deserve to die,” and I don’t take any pleasure in his death, but Jeebus, if you were 12 and playing with a realistic toy gun in a park, and a police car came up and the cop tells you to put you hands up, isn’t the obvious response to, you know, put your hands up? As opposed to reaching for your realistic toy gun?

              There are many indisputable examples of police abuse. It dilutes the genuine cases to let emotion get in your way and elevate the marginal cases to OMG POLICE ABUSE!!! status. And yes, it looks like this is a marginal case. Did the police make mistakes? Yes… but only because Rice made a huge mistake.

              1. I don’t go in for the simple-minded Team cheerleading, either anti-cop or pro-cop

                Are you joking?

                1. No, I’m not. I’m perfectly willing to condemn real cases of police abuse, and have done so around here. Unfortunately, Reason often highlight cases that are much more muddled, and involve the victims doing really stupid and dangerous things that lead directly to their deaths. In those cases, I don’t go along with the “It’s all the cop’s fault!” chorus so common around here.

              2. Officers ordered Tamir to raise his hands and, did not comply, and instead he took the toy gun out of his waistband.

                There’s the video. Right up there.

                He didn’t pull a gun. At most (its hard to tell), he reached for his waistband. The caption for the video is obviously wrong about one thing (calls it a “pellet” gun, which it wasn’t), and I don’t see how you can say that he took the toy gun out of his waistband. Even if he was trying to, he didn’t have time.

                1. I was quoting the news article. Watching the video again, true, it doesn’t look like he actually drew the gun. It looks like he was in the process of drawing it when he got shot. It’s hard to tell, but it looks like the gun was in his waistband, and his hand was on it. So I’d say it was more than “reaching for” his waistband.

                  He certainly did not have his hands up, though. Is there any argument that the cop did tell him to put his hands up? If he did say that, then I think it’s hard to avoid the conclusion of “Darwin Award.”

              3. Lets grant you every (debatable) point.
                How do you justify them letting him bleed out? That life could have been saved, and not only did they not take action, they prevented any one from taking action to save a kid’s life.

                1. And, yes, from what I’ve seen and heard there is debate about whether he was told to put his hands up. Thew simply wasn’t time for the officers to give any commands. They drove up, hero boy rolls out like he’s an action hero in a movie, and guns the kid down.

                2. Crickets man, all you’re gonna hear is crickets. No-one can defend the callous disregard of human life they showed by letting him bleed out without calling for medical assistance. But to actually handcuff the one person who was trying to render him aid is tantamount to murder.

              4. Let’s not forget that the original claim by the police was that they asked Rice to raise his hands THREE TIMES. I haven’t heard that claim since the police realized that there was video of the shooting. That makes me suspicious of the claim that they even asked him once to raise his hands. It may well be that the kid, startled, did in fact reach for the gun to say, “See? It’s fake!” Not smart, but some people do dumb things when you give them no time to think. Almost as dumb as nearly running over the kid before shooting him, rather than stopping a safe distance away and, you know, talking to him.

        3. One image, from WCPO. Other images, if you google Tamir Rice pistol, show the pistol in more detail. The orange tip had been broken off.

          Looks pretty much like a 1911 to me. Of course that doesn’t mean that the cops can drive right up to him and shoot him, nor let him bleed out and stop people from aiding him.

          1. Correct, but it does pretty much explain why they shot him.

            Many tragedies are the result of a series of circumstances. In retrospect, we can look back and say: “If the Titanic had been built with better rivets, if the captain wasn’t trying to set a record, if they had hit the iceberg square on instead of scraping against it, if the nearby ship had understood their distress signals….”

            This tragedy is clearly the result of similar series of errors. But to be fair to everyone involved, it must be said that Rice made some hugely stupid choices. He wasn’t four years old: at 12 he should know it’s dangerous to draw a gun on a cop.

            In an ideal world, those choices should not have lead to his death. But we don’t live in an ideal world, and sometimes mistakes compound one another. When they do, it’s only rational to look at all the mistakes made, and not just focus on the ones made by the people we are pre-disposed to dislike. Around here, that tends to be the cops. And cops do make mistakes. This was one of them. But it was, I think, a “reasonable” mistake.

            1. You and Tulpa should form a club.

              1. I don’t just argue for the sake of arguing. I’m interested in the truth, and the truth is often too “messy” to fit neatly into the pre-determined categories that partisans have prepared for their confirmation bias.

                I think it’s admirable that Reason highlights cases of police abuse, which is undeniably a real problem. Unfortunately, that leads them to highlight edge cases where the fault does not lie entirely on the side of the police, and to ignore the undeniably stupid actions of many of the people who end up getting shot by police.

                Hey folks, want to avoid getting shot by the police?

                1. Consider all police dangerous. Some are sociopaths or just idiots, and they have guns.

                2. Don’t get into fights with them.

                3. Don’t lead them on high-speed chases.

                4. If they tell you to put your hands up, do that.

                5. Don’t try to pull guns on them, even toy guns.

                Following those simple steps will reduce your chances of being shot by over 95%*!

                (*A made-up number, but probably about right, because it seems like 95% of the police deaths that people complain about involve people who ignored rule #1, and at least one or two more of the others.)

                But you can hate me for trying to be fair, if that makes you feel better.

  34. I read and article that said it was ‘reasonable’ because of the speed the encounter unfolded. So, apparently it’s reasonable to rush in with reckless abandon. Then justify your actions based on the fact that you rushed in with reckless abandon. That’s Brilliant!

    1. That’s quite a catch…

    2. That is exactly what they are saying, Chappy.

  35. I’m pretty close to agreeing that the polices’ “rules for engagement” should require that the officer allow the alleged gun-toter to get off the first shot before responding. Yep, a few more cops would be dead, but they are being paid to do a dangerous job’ but a heck of a lot more innocent folks reaching for their wallet, or making a “furtive” movement, or confused by all the shouting, etc. would be alive.

    1. Or at least have a gun pointed at them. Though that would be easier to lie about.

      If you deliberately put yourself in potentially dangerous situations (even if it’s your job), you need to be held to a higher standard for self defense, not a lower one.

      1. Or at least actually see a gun. The video show that Rice didn’t even have the pellet gun exposed at the time of the shooting. It was in his pants. At best, it appears he may have put his hand at his waistband.

        1. Are you sure? How do you have a gun “in your pants” without the grip showing? The gun was not in his pocket, totally hidden. Reports say it was in his waistband, and in the video it looks like he was reaching for it when he got shot.

    2. I hear you, but the existing rules – which were not followed – should have been enough to defuse this situation.

    3. If fewer departments reacted to a complete cluster-grope by saying “proceedures were followed”, I’d be a lot more willing to cut them some slack.

    1. Why not? It’s as much their “lived experience” as a black man’s is his or a lesbian’s hers, etc. Who are we to sit in judgement of how fearful that man must have been as he leaped to the defense of his city and discharged is weapon into the torso of a teenager seconds after arriving on the scene and without announcing himself?

    2. This guy has the best business model:

      1. Encourage cops to ventilate civilians at the slightest provocation.
      2. Defend the cop/police department/local government in court.
      3. GOTO 1

  36. When a grand jury decides whether to indict applaud officers Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback

  37. “The question is not whether every officer would have reacted the same way. Rather, the relevant inquiry is whether a reasonable officer, confronting the exact same scenario under identical conditions could have concluded that deadly force was necessary. ”

    Just once, I want someone to ask these cop sucking apologists why us untrained “civilians” don’t receive the same benefit of the doubt. This is sickening.

    1. There’s no Civilian’s Union.

    2. Again, because we don’t have cops’ eyes, we’re not trained, therefore our decisions to use deadly force face more scrutiny.

      Cops are, without question held to lower standards. There is no debate on this point.

  38. I wonder what would have happened if they cop had just driven up and shot the wrong black guy.

    1. The wrong black guy still might have had a weapon. Justified.

    2. The wrong black guy is never shot. That’s what throw down guns are for.

    3. It wouldn’t change the analysis. Even though they’d have shot the “wrong” person (not like shooting Tamir Rice was shooting the “right” person, mind you), it would’ve been called “objectively reasonable under the circumstances” and, thus, justified.

      1. objectively reasonable under the circumstances

        Eh, they all look alike. And anyway, what difference, at this point, does it make?

    4. Cops walk for shooting the wrong people. Those Asian women shot in LA during the police riot there? Cops walked.

      Wrong door raids with injuries/deaths? The cops walk.

      1. They walk in every other situation, too. I’m giving poor odds that the South Carolina cop that shot a man in the back will actually be convicted.

      2. Those are much better cases of police abuse and unaccountability than this one.

  39. If someone appears to be about to shoot you. ..

  40. What would happen if we really started to take police accountability seriously?

    I’m guessing our version of the Boshin War.

  41. Hey, the cops in the Rice and Crawford shootings THOUGHT they gave orders to stand down before shooting. As any reasonable cop in that situation would think the exact same thing, what they did was justifiable…

  42. If these fuckers had a shred of moral integrity they’d man the fuck up, issue a public apology, and resign eat a bullet.

  43. “There can be no doubt that Rice’s death was tragic and, indeed, when one considers his age, heartbreaking. However, for all of the reasons discussed herein, I conclude that Officer Loehmann’s belief that Rice posed a threat of serious physical harm or death was objectively reasonable as was his response to that perceived threat.”

    Fuck. You.

    Wonder if you’d use the same logic, say, the kid shot the cops? I mean, fair is fair, right?

    Of course you wouldn’t because you’re an asshole. An immoral, sociopath who takes people for fools.

    Those cops KILLED THAT CHILD.

    That’s the *only* objective conclusion to be made here.

    1. Officer Loehmann’s belief that Rice posed a threat of serious physical harm or death was objectively reasonable

      Twelve year old kid, no weapon visible = not “objectively reasonable” to shoot. Period.

      1. “No weapon visible”? Was not the grip of the gun sticking out of his waistband?

        1. Again, they rolled up on the kid and shot him. Before he had reasonable chance to react to orders that were never given.
          A more reasonable (Drink!) person would have approached slower, from a greater distance, with gun drawn, and ordered the CHILD to drop the weapon.
          If you’re such a pussy/hot dog that you think the best option is to rush the kid and then open fire in a blind panic, then you shouldn’t be a cop, and either way, you should be prosecuted for negligent homicide at the least.

    2. Rufe, I thoroughly agree with you.

      This ruling was a terrible example of the use of deadly farce.

  44. The disturbing thing about this is the media and cops act like there’s a ‘war on cops’ when incidences like this argue the opposite is happening.

    People who think by simply believing they have nothing to worry about are overlooking the fact you can easily be shot by a cop for exactly doing nothing wrong.

    How is this a war on cops and does it not possibly lead to the people eventually taking matters into their own hands from demanding change once and for all or worse…outright self-defense.

    That this happened at all is outrageous; that people would conclude it was *reasonable* is downright troubling and peers into the possible mindset that grips law enforcement.

    And it’s not good.

  45. The dude that shot the lion isn’t being charged. Which story you think prompts more outrage?

  46. Were I a juror and a defendant accused of killing a police officer who, say, had just stopped him in the street testified that he had a reasonable belief that the officer would shoot him and thus shot the officer in self defense, I’d have to believe him, no?

    This is one of many reasons why I’ll never be on a jury.

  47. It’s time to challenge the procedures that are allowing “justified” murders to happen at all. In fact, it’s time to challenge the idea that “someone who has a gun visible in a public space is always a dangerous felon about to unload on the innocent.” This perception allows those toxic procedures to continue to kill people.

  48. I think I found Tulpa in the derpbook comments to Reason’s post on this story.

    Damien Michael It was reasonable .. Fuck that kid ! And his shitty parents who let him run around alone pointing fake guns at people ..

    Damien Michael I did but I still wasn’t a dumbass pointing guns at people at the age of 12 .. Of course the cops didn’t have to jump out Amd automatically shoot but their not wrong for doing so either .. Fuck you pussy liberals

    Also, this person lives in Florida and is a Cowboys/Yankees fan, which is just hilarious.

  49. Under the sparkling candy-apple red hood of its morality, justice, and politics all modern civilizations transport a powerful engine of catastrophic brutality.

    1. Seriously, I want what this guy is smoking…

      1. It’s the shrooms.

  50. “The only thing that matters is Loehmann’s own subjective view of the threat to his own person”

    No, what you said 2 sentences prior is correct: “it only matters whether a reasonable officer, in the same position as Loehmann, would have reacted in the same way”

    I haven’t seen the video, and I don’t really know the details but if it was a situation where a ‘reasonable’ officer would say Loehmann was wrong to shoot the kid than it doesn’t matter if he thought there was a threat, it would not have been a justified shooting.

  51. Some parts of this incident seem reasonable:
    – Cops go out on a call for a person with a weapon
    – Cops pull up (off camera) maybe 75 yds (?) away
    – Cops use loudspeaker to address Rice (according to police)

    But then it goes off the rails:
    – Cops speed to Rice’s position
    – One cop jumps out immediately and shoots Rice

    There are probably circumstances where it makes sense to speed up to a suspect – maybe when the person has shot the weapon or is an immediate danger to nearby people (gun out pointed at someone). But not in this case – why not advance slowly with continuous loudspeaker warnings? “Get down on the ground! Lie face down and drop your weapon or we’ll shoot!”

    And there are no circumstances where it is reasonable to get out and shoot immediately at a person who has taken no shots and does not have a weapon drawn. Why not sit behind the bullet-proof glass and car door and continue with warnings over the loudspeaker?

    The driver deserves 5 years, and the shooter deserves life in prison, IMHO.

    1. Cops pull up (off camera) maybe 75 yds (?) away
      – Cops use loudspeaker to address Rice (according to police)

      Assumes facts not in evidence. And by evidence, I mean “according to someone not a cop.”

    2. and does not have a weapon drawn

      But what if there is the grip of a handgun sticking out from a waistband, the person is told to put their hands up (which I believe happened), and instead that person reaches for grip of the gun, which is what I think the video shows?

  52. One of the most shocking parts of the investigations is that the vulnerable way the police approached Tamir is somehow an excuse for them shooting him. If they were uncomfortable approaching in that way – then they shouldn’t have approached him that way. They can’t choose to approach in a way that exposes them and then use that approach as the reason for killing him. That’s nonsense.

    Another thing that is very strange, is one of the reports says that Tamir’s age cannot be taken into account, because that is “after acquired” information. How is the fact that he is a child not be apparent just from looking at him?

    1. Just read through the investigations, noticed that too. Especially in the first one, which basically says that the officer that shot Tamir Rice wasn’t in control of the car and was closer to him and in more danger in the passenger seat, ergo, good shoot.

      Second one is even worse, basically says that officers don’t have to wait to see if there’s an actual threat before shooting. That one’s definitely of the “every shooting is justified” pov.

  53. the relevant inquiry is whether a reasonable officer,

    The double standard is so ingrained they don’t even see it. Reasonable “officer”? Why not reasonable “person”?

  54. I drove through some Black Lives Matter idiots trying to blockade the highway after the verdict was announced. I rolled down the window and politely asked Bearded Whiteboy standing in front of my car if he would let me and my infant sleeping in the back through. And he did, and gave me a middle finger for some reason. I’m still offended by that. I would have cheerfully driven over him if I had felt threatened, mind you. But there’s no call for rudeness.

    1. Glad to see you promoting civility….

  55. This analysis is poorly written I am not sure whether the author is being intentionally obtuse or if he simply doesn’t understand the concepts he is trying to explain

    The reasonableness standard is objective and so it does not matter what the officers subjective impression was only to the extent that his subjective impression must be consistent with an objectively reasonable one that is all that matters

    If the officers subjective impression is not consistent with an objectively reasonable one it’s a relevant so the article is wrong on this point

    Also the objectively reasonable officer standard versus person standard which a Nother ignoramus opines on is present because officers have training and experience that most people do not have therefore they can rely on that training and experience as long as it is objectively reasonable

    MY OPINION BASED ON WHAT I LEARNED FROM ARTICLES ETC (my expert opinion) was that the SHOOTING WAS OBJECTIVELY UNREASONABLE

    IOW I CAME TO THE OPPOSITE CONCLUSION OF THESE EXPERTS

    However I would need to review testimony evidence etc. that they were privy to before I say they are wrong

    I will hedge and say based on what I know of the case I believe they are wrong but that is not the same thing because I have not had opportunity to review all the extra case facts that have emerged

  56. how is the dispatcher or whoever it was not charged with something? how do you not relay the information that it was probably a fake gun. you can’t say that wouldn’t have any effect on a “reasonable person”.

  57. “Rather, the relevant inquiry is whether a reasonable officer, confronting the exact same scenario under identical conditions could have concluded that deadly force was necessary.”

    BULLSHIT!! That “scenario” and those “conditions” were created by the officers involved. Reasonable officers would have used the equipment issued them; Car, Gun, Body Armor, LOUD SPEAKER, to resolve the issue with no loss of life. Reasonable officers would have stopped at a safe distance, and used their car, armor and loud speaker to address the person and request they disarm, before approaching, and then reassessing the realities of the situation. What reasonable officers would NOT have done is roll up, at speed, to within a few feet of somebody, jump out of the car into an unknown situation and terminating a person’s life in 2.5 seconds without ever assessing the situation at all. The officers involve willfully placed themselves into a situation with extremely limited options, and proceed to exercise those options with no hesitation.

  58. From the linked … Reason writeup: According to The Huffington Post, the kid did not immediately comply; instead he tried to take the gun out of his pants. The officer fired twice, hitting Rice in the stomach. He died Sunday.

    Huh.

    So, realistic fake gun in his pants.

    Pulls it out when the cops say “hey, kid with a gun, put your hands up”.

    Are we to suggest, then, that it’s unreasonable to shoot someone who really, truly looks like he’s drawing a gun on you?

    Or only if you’re a cop and it later turns out it was a realistic toy?

    Calling it “murder” is a little precious, even for today’s Reason crowd.

    Bring back Postrel as editor.

    1. rtfa, ass hat.

      From the article:

      “Greenfield points out that despite the investigators’ exhausting efforts to explain away inconvenient details as irrelevant to Loehmann’s parsing of the situation, there is still one nontrivial fact that goes unaddressed: the cops never gave Rice verbal instructions before killing him:

      ‘Even so, there was one stumbling block that Sims and Crawford were constrained to fudge, that in the one to two seconds between Loehmann jumping out of the car and leaving a dead boy on the ground, there was no shout of “freeze” or “hands up.” There was no order with which Tamir Rice refused to comply.'”

      1. So the reports have been contradictory? OK, that is certainly another point against the police, but it does not change what the video shows: the police pull up, Rice puts his hand on or very near the grip of the gun in his waistband, and then gets shot. A mistake? Yes, for all parties involved. Murder? No.

        1. Manslaughter at least. They needlessly created a dangerous situation, one that a REASONABLE person should know would endanger another person.

        2. Yes, the reports are contradictory in that the cops initially claimed that they asked Rice to drop the gun/put his hands up THREE times. Then they became aware that there was video of the incident, and that they were obviously lying, so the official account changed.

    2. You need to watch the video moron, that is not what happened at all, and they have now admitted they gave him no command.

  59. LEO’s (Law Enforcement Officers) are now trained (at the police academy) to shoot first. Let me repeat that so it sinks in, cops are trained to shoot first. It’s not some crazy conspiracy theory. A veteran instructor here in Texas quit the police academy after it was decided they were switching their training from assess then respond to shoot first then access.

    This is NOT how those men & women empowered with arrest powers should act and we all know that. It is by our compliance with these outlandish acts and the BS excuse given for them that this is able to continue and even grow.

    Mark my words, if these 2 are allowed to legally execute this kid without recourse that WILL send a message to the rest of Law Enforcement that it’s now OK to kill kids so long as you can make a half-ass argument for having feared for your safety.

    1. I don’t agree with the “shoot first” principle, but the question here is: for how long is it reasonable for a cop to wait before he decides someone is a danger? In this case, the cops made mistakes, but it’s hardly a “legal execution.”

      We’ve all seen those police shooting tests in the movies, in which cutouts of different people pop up in doorways of windows and around corners, and the cop is expected to quickly assess whether they represent a danger or not. Guy with a gun: shoot. Woman holding a baby: don’t shoot. But if a cop gets a call about a kid with a gun in a park, drives up, and upon seeing the cop, the kid reaches for the grip of what looks like a large and realistic handgun sticking out of their waistband…. That seems like a trick question. I just can’t condemn someone too harshly for making a quick but wrong decision under those circumstances. Sure, bad decision, maybe this person shouldn’t be a cop, etc. But the situation is far from clear-cut.

      1. I just saw a video on youtube in… Australia, I think, where a guy had an actual real life gun and the cops were able to approach and arrest him without firing a shot.

        We’re framing the situation incorrectly when we say the very perception of the existence of a weapon is grounds for execution.

        Even the presence of a weapon does not, in every circumstance, justify execution.

        1. Same all over Europe, despite people with guns there being more likely to be criminals than they are here.

          Why? Because it turns out most people facing arrest don’t actually want to shoot their way out of the situation. There’s 2 cops + however many reinforcements the city has on the way. Best case scenario if you shoot a cop is 20-30 years, worst case scenario is you get ventilated by his buddy.

          Given those outcomes, why is it reasonable for cops to assume the person in front of them is just itching to kill them? If I was crazy enough to try and kill cops, it’d be with a Mosin-Nagant from an apartment window, not by getting them called on me and playing a game of quick-draw.

          The whole war on cops meme is affecting their judgment.

      2. for how long is it reasonable for a cop to wait before he decides someone is a danger?

        2.5 seconds, apparently

      3. Well maybe we can condemn them a little bit for letting him bleed out without calling an ambulance, and arresting his sister when she tried to render aid to him.

  60. Of course it was justified for the police to summarily kill an unarmed 12 year old because FYTW.

  61. There has to be a middle ground between what the officer thinks and what is actually happening when he thinks it. The fact that “[t]hat threat was nonexistent,… ” is not a fact available to the officer at the tine of shooting. I’m not saying yay cops here, I’m just saying this writing seems to be a bit unREASONable. The question is, properly put, did the officer have a REASON to shoot? and that is not possible to determine accurately without a Godlike perception of what was happening. That’s the tragedy. People can act with Godlike authority without a Godlike understanding of events.

    1. There’s 3 parts to the issue:

      1. Were the cops reasonable in charging in close, putting themselves at risk for no good reason?
      2. Were the cops reasonable, given the circumstances they themselves created, in shooting (apparently without verbal instructions to comply)?
      3. Were the cops reasonable, given what had just happened, to let Tamir bleed to death, not call EMS, and arrest his sister when she tried to render assistance?

      If it weren’t for 1 and 3, I’d be sympathetic to a contrite officer claiming to have panicked. 1 Makes it look like they were itching for a confrontation. 3 makes it look like flat-out negligent homicide, at a minimum.

      Totality of circs, yo.

      1. Here’s what I can’t fathom: if they were really concerned about a pistol wielding threat, why the FUCK wouldn’t they simply stop outside of his weapons envelope and shout out a call. i.e. Gather more fucking information? Why doesn’t that matter? I used to carry a small set of binos in Afghanistan. You can always pull up, glass any suspected knucklehead, and get more information.

        I mean, in this case, you don’t even have to use binos. Stop fifty yards away, get out with the car between you and the suspect and simply shout out, “Hey, man!? What’s going on??”

        That’s all it would have taken to see how the kid reacted. In all likelihood, it would have become clear it was a fucking child. Tragedy averted.

        Nope. Instead they fly right up to the kid guns a-blazing, making it impossible for them to have any time to do anything other than react by shooting. I mean, they literally created the hazardous situation where there was none. And it was entirely in their imagination.

        If they don’t get crucified for this, it’s over. We should just start packing and assume that as soon as a cop approaches that they’re going to shoot. There’s no other safe way to engage with police. So, might as well start shooting first.

        1. Hey FUCK-wad, what’s the “envelope” for a .22 a 9mm or a .45?? You said, “Stop outside the weapon’s envelope”. What the hell is that — a mile or two away??

          1. It’s very, difficult to hit anyone with a handgun from a hundred feet when they’re on the other side of the police vehicle. These idiots created a dangerous situation in which, had the young man wanted to shoot them, he could’ve done so as they pulled up, before they got out of the cop car. Turns out, the youth should have had a real gun so that he could shoot first before they had a chance to kill him.

  62. The ruling class kills the peasants with impunity. That’s hardly something new under the sun.

    Maybe it was different here once. That would make it just one of the many many ways the Supremes have betrayed the American Revolution.

  63. And yet, President Obama expects us to trust law enforcement to enforce gun control laws in an even-handed manner.

  64. When a 12-year old punk pulls a gun on a cop he’s going to get shot — period. Good for the police. If they had waited another 15-years the little mother mother f**ker would have been using a .45.

    Slim

  65. These two idiots pulled up within a few feet of the “suspect,” who — had he actually been intending to shoot someone — could have killed the driver side policeman before he ever exited the police vehicle. Watch the video and you’ll see that it’s a textbook case of what NOT to do. At the very least, both of these policemen should be fired for endangering themselves needlessly.

  66. The title should be changed to “We live in a world where mother’s let their 12 yo sons walk around parks with realistic looking guns”. I know, too long right? Well here’s the deal, when we teach our children well we won’t have “tragic” instances like these happening. Either the kid wasn’t learnin’ or his folks wasn’t teachin’.

    1. It wasn’t that long ago that we ( society) let our kids walk around with real air guns, BB guns, pellet guns, and cops didn’t drive right up the their feet and shoot them where they stood without so much as a question or command asshole.

  67. In the title, the word that should be in quotes is ”experts’. I have no idea what makes a retired FBI agent or a seemingly random prosecutor an expert.

  68. There was zero excuse for shooting a boy with a fake gun. These cops know that changing the standard in which they can ruthlessly gundown an unarmed person would strip them of some power, so they are against it.

    The problem is bad police training, police indifference, the Us vs. Them mentality, militarization of police and too many police.

    Military veterans do not want to hear this but another less known problem is too many groundpounder veterans, with no other skills, becoming police and using tactics from the battlefield on America’s streets.

    We do not tolerate shooting people who are not actually pointing a real weapon at others or police. It is that simple. Having a real weapon in your hand is not the same as preparing to shoot someone. If these is only a fake weapon, such as a pellet gun, there is no reason to shoot the person.

  69. Government is not reason, it is not eloquence,?it is force! Like fire, it is a dangerous servant, and a fearful master; never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible action.

  70. A lot of lay people miss important details in legal stories like this, and the author of this article did as well. There are no “independent” reports as they’re described in this article. It is the prosecutor’s office who empaneled the grand jury. It is also the prosecutor’s office that commissioned the two reports expressly for the purpose of having the grand jury read them during their deliberation of this case. The prosecutor doesn’t want to indict these two murderous cops. The prosecutor only empaneled the grand jury because the community was outraged at the murder of a young boy by two cops. The prosecutor clearly never intended to get an indictment from the grand jury, because the prosecutor’s office commissioned two reports that tell the grand jury the pigs did nothing wrong in murdering a young boy. Don’t you get it? The prosecutor is trying to avoid blame when the pigs aren’t indicted by the grand jury (by saying, we did all we could, but the grand jury decided…), but the prosecutor is actively undermining any chance of an indictment by supplying the grand jury with two so-called “expert” reports the prosecutor’s office itself commissioned to say the pigs did nothing wrong!

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