Police

Video Shows Alton Sterling Shot and Killed by Baton Rouge Police Despite Being Pinned and On His Back

Sterling had been selling CDs outside a supermarket; police had responded to a call that a man matching his description had pointed a gun.

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Alton Sterling
The Advocate

37-year-old Alton Sterling was shot and killed early Tuesday morning after being shot multiple times to the chest, while being pinned to the ground on his back by two Baton Rouge (La.) police officers. 

Police had responded to an anonymous call that a man matching Sterling's description had threatened someone with a gun while standing outside of the Triple S Food Mart. 

Cellphone video shot by a bystander was obtained by The Advocate, which shows an officer tackling Sterling to the ground, followed by another officer forcing Sterling onto his back. One officer screams, "he's got a gun!" and the second officer pulls out his gun and holds it inches away from Sterling's chest.

Then the sound of multiple gunshots is heard. The bystander holding the camera turns away from the incident at this point and a woman can be heard sobbing and screaming "Oh my God!" The entire exchange takes place in less than 30 seconds. 

The body cameras worn by the officers reportedly fell off during the altercation, but apparently police dashcam and store security camera footage of the shooting exists.

Sterling was a father of five, known locally as "the CD man." Triple S Food Mart owner Abdullah Muflahi reportedly gave Sterling his blessing to peddle his wares outside the store. Muflahi told CNN he never saw Sterling get into an altercation with anyone and was not aware of any incident where Sterling had pulled a gun on someone, though he says Sterling recently started carrying a weapon after being mugged.  

The Advocate reports:

"His hand was nowhere (near) his pocket," Muflahi said, adding that Sterling wasn't holding a weapon. After the shooting, an officer reached into Sterling's pocket and retrieved a handgun, Muflahi said.

"They were really aggressive with him from the start," Muflahi said about the officers.

Sterling appeared to die quickly, Muflahi said. Just after the killing, the officer who fired the bullets cursed, and both officers seemed like they were "freaking out," Muflahi said.

The store owner said he heard one of the officers say, "Just leave him."

The two officers have been placed on administrative leave, and Baton Rouge Police Department spokesman Cpl. L'Jean McKneely told The Advocate that "We give officers normally a day or so to go home and think about it" before questioning them after a shooting, adding that the stress can cause "tunnel vision" and produce bad information. McKneely says the officers will likely be interviewed Wednesday morning, though the Louisiana Police Bill of Rights allows officers to delay interrogations for up to 30 days

Louisiana is an open carry state, which allows for anyone over the age of 17 and legally permitted to carry a firearm to possess one in public. It's highly unlikely Sterling would have been permitted to carry a weapon, given his extensive rap sheet which included drug, theft, domestic battery, and weapons charges. The New York Daily News reports family members have said Sterling was on probation at the time of his death and had been living at a transitional shelter where he was known as a "a friendly man who stayed clean."

Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.), who represents Baton Rouge, has called for a Department of Justice (DOJ) investigation into the shooting.

You can watch video of the shooting below (after the jump), but be warned, it is graphic and disturbing. 

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  1. Can’t wait to hear the boot lickers justify this.

    1. Oh, they’ll excuse it. The video doesn’t show everything! And what’s important is that that the officers perceived he was going for a gun!

      1. Let’s not go jumping to conclusions here. Remember we’re only hearing one side of the story. We don’t actually know what happened before the video. These good officers may very well have had reason to fear for their safety, and had to make a split-second decision in a life-or-death situation. If you’ve never worn the uniform, you have no idea what it’s like and really have no business spreading misinformation and your misguided opinions about matters you know nothing about. Let’s grow up and just wait for a full and fair investigation, which will conclude that the police were following standard procedure, even if unfortunate mistakes were made in this tragic situation. These brave heroes are, after all, under-staffed, under-paid, and under-appreciated and their training budget was severely slashed in the latest round of budget-cutting.

        1. +1 surfing trophy.

        2. I think this is a Poe? Up until the second to last sentence it read as sincere, but that’s when it seems to go over the top, but coming later in the paragraph it might just be getting carried away so…

          I’m gonna go with “Poe”, but that judgement is weakly held.

      2. It’s highly unlikely Sterling would have been permitted to carry a weapon, given his extensive rap sheet which included drug, theft, domestic battery, and weapons charges.

        Plus, “something something… thug… mumble mumble… had it coming…”

    2. Did you miss it? Their ‘intent’ was to uphold the law. We all know the rest of the story. Just ask Hillary.

      1. +1 Federal Bureau of Inoculation

      2. Remember George Holy War Bush asking the death penalty for hemp shovers? He wanted the courts to trust the “good faith” of cops willing to kill people for any pretext the politicians can dream up. Then George War Bush deputized the entire police force of each of These States as armed looters for prohibitionism, with carte blanche to rob and murder, and keep the proceeds provided they “share” with fellow troopers. After this moronic but good faith asset forfeiture looting policy completely destroyed the economy, and is now drying up, you expect the looters to suddenly develop reverence for rights?

    3. The rebuttal will be his criminal history.

    4. The officers involved were justified in there actions as the perpetrator was armed and dangerous and even if he wasn’t armed and dangerous there was a clear and present danger to the officers and even if there wasn’t a clear and present danger the perpetrator resisted arrest and even if he didn’t resist arrest the officers were justified in there actions because of our union and fuck you that’s why. Thank you.

  2. The two officers have been placed on administrative leave paid vacation, and Baton Rouge Police Department spokesman Cpl. L’Jean McKneely told The Advocate that “We give officers normally a day or so to go home and think about it get their stories straight” before questioning them after a shooting… McKneely says the officers will likely be interviewed Wednesday morning, though the Louisiana Police Bill of Rights allows officers to delay interrogations for up to 30 days.

    FTFY. I assume then that in LA, if I or some other peasant were to shoot someone we’d get up to 30 days to delay being interrogated. You know, since there’s no double standard or anything.

    1. Are you serving on the front line of the war on crime? Then you can’t judge.

      1. I’d think shooting someone would be more traumatic for a civilian than for a police officer, so the same logic that applies to a police officer being allow up to 30 days would apply to a civilian even moreso. Of course, the assumption is that a civilian who ends up shooting someone is a psychopath.

    2. Some animals are more equal than others, it says it right here: Louisiana Police Bill of Rights

      They have rights we don’t.

      1. No, they have privilege. “Bill of rights” is a complete misnomer. This is the right place to be complaining about privilege.

        1. “That’s the way it was. Privilege, which just means ‘private law.’ Two types of people laugh at the law; those that break it and those that make it.”.

          1. Yup, that’s pretty much what I was thinking of.

          2. Two types of people laugh at the law; those that break it and those that make it.”.

            Interesting how much overlap those two groups have. The Venn Diagram would almost look like two completely overlapping circles.

            1. No, I think it would be more that the “those who make it” region would be almost entirely inside the other, which would include most people.

              1. No, I think it would be more that the “those who make it” region would be almost entirely inside the other, which would include most people.

                I’ll accept that correction. Although the majority of “those who break the law” probably don’t even realize they’re breaking the law (Three Felonies a Day and all that).

    3. No, the police are held to a higher standard so, they need up to 30 days to make sure that they are ready and able to apply the higher standards that apply to law enforcement officers.

  3. Baton rouge is already scary as hell. This will be baltimore worthy me thinks.

    Bets on the next stupid pimp phrase for sharpton to coin?

    If i were those cops, i would claim the hillary defense and add that i don’t identify as the shooter. In this country, that should now be a perfectly plausible defense.

    1. Baton rouge is already scary as hell.

      It’s been a while since I’ve driven through Baton Rouge, but what I remember of it was pretty much “Detroit on the Mississippi delta.”

      1. I grew up there, but I haven’t set foot there in over 20 years. Most of it was/is pretty nice. It was a decent place to live. I know it’s changed a lot since Katrina, but from what I understand it’s more built up now and nicer than before, so I don’t know where comparisons to Detroit come from.

    2. the hillary defense

      He may have squeezed the trigger, but he did not intend for those bullets to be discharged into that young black fellow. He just doesn’t really understand how guns work, and his people made him carry it when he didn’t really care one way or the other. But eventually he rolled with it because it’s just convenient.

  4. A sampling of excuses, pulled from the Baton Rouge Police Department’s Facederp page:

    If you listened to the sound, you would hear multiple voices yell he has a gun. and looking atht e footage, he may have been trying to reach for said gun. suicide by cop… happens often

    and from the same person…

    Nothing to do with race, given you are the racist one here. Both arms were not under control, so the threat of a weapon still existed. Also, even if both arms are cuffed, one can still draw a weapon and use it. Obviously you lack any critical thinking skills on this, especially since you jump to race as your only weapon against my argument.

    Was it a complex suicide-by-cop thing? Sounds like he was on the warpath from ‘go’ by threatening the clerk, and if you don’t cool your @#@# when the police show up, well, that’s just stupid.

    oh quit lying. By the way, the thug was a convicted felon who was illegally in possession of a gun, and then to top it off, he pulled his gun out when the cop tried to subdue him.

    Let’s put a big black man with a 20-year violent criminal record and illegal gun against you, and see what poetry comes out of your mouth.

    There’s a lot more, but I had to stop before I threw my computer against the wall.

    1. Alright, a couple more.

      Looks like the man was resisting, failed to comply with officers, was reaching for the weapon found in his pocket, and did not follow their instructions to stop his dangerous actions when the officer clearly was ready to use lethal force and told him he would– and made the wrong choice to continue to fight the officers. The officer who held him at gunpoint showed restraint and fired only when he had to, and again to stop what he felt was continued danger to himself and his partner. Sad to see this happen, and saddened to see the foolish reactions to what is so obvious from this video– the shooting appears to be justified. Wish there was more video, but from this much it appears to be a “good” shoot. Hang in there officers.

      how many cops are murdered in cold blood each year no riots no protests but when a cop kills a black man everyone has a fit and destroys everything in their path it’s a wonder all law enforcement hasn’t gone on strike due to the lack of respect people have for them but whose to say that won’t happen someday like the old saying goes you don’t know what you got till it’s gone granted they are a few corrupt cops who are a disgrace to the badge and their profession most cops go out of their way to ensure civliians safety and keep criminals off the streets……….

      (ok, now I’m done)

      1. no riots no protests

        No, I think we’ve seen what could fairly be called riots when police are killed a few times at least in recent years. After the bombing in Boston and when that carzy cop in LA killed some cops come to mind.

        1. I assumed this had more to do with the ‘how many cops are murdered in cold blood each year’ rhetorical “question”. I think the belief or assertion is that cops get murdered every day and nobody cares.

          1. According to the FBI, counting just “feloniously killed” officers, we have (for the last three years)
            2013: 27 killed, once every 13.5 days
            2014: 51 killed, once every 7.2 days
            2015: 41 killed, once every 8.9 days

            Now, cops do suffer murder-rates significantly higher then the general population (something like 10 murders per 100,000 law enforcement officers, compared to a

            1. One should expect that police would have higher murder rates since they deliberately expose themselves to more danger than the general population. Those numbers look very low and like good news. But of course copsuckers will act like the “nearly 100%” increase from 2013 to 2014 is meaningful.

              1. It’s when the War On Cops was declared.

              2. But of course copsuckers will act like the “nearly 100%” increase from 2013 to 2014 is meaningful.

                They’ll read it like EscherEnigma did (dead cops/day) only with the implication that (any of the following…) everybody always gets away with shooting an officer dead, police aren’t compensated for the additional risk, and the world is to blame for shoving police officers in front of all those bullets.

                You can experience this in their defense of officers. Rarely is it they’re just upholding an unjust law, following orders, or trying to make the best of a bad situation as it is they are members of a victim class just as much as Blacks or Homosexuals.

      2. it’s a wonder all law enforcement hasn’t gone on strike

        Even they are too smart for this. When the world continued to operate mostly fine without them people might starting asking themselves why they continue to fund a massive police state when a much smaller force would do the job just as well.

        1. As I recall, after the Freddie Gray mess the NYC police did sort of go on strike, pulling back their efforts to the more serious stuff. I read a lot of articles at the time saying “isn’t it nice to not deal with ‘stop and frisk’ anymore?”

      3. Well that was all… 100% predictable.

    2. Obviously you lack any critical thinking skills on this

    3. I used to think that people just weren’t aware of situations like this. Nope. They’re aware. They are 100% knowledgeable of the situation. They just don’t care. They make excuses and rationalize the situation. These same people wouldn’t hesitate to turn on their own countrymen. Thay’ll rat your ass out on the most pettiest crimes just to see you punished.

      1. The rationalize it because they can’t bring themselves to believe that this could happen to them or their loved ones.

      2. I don’t think it’s that, exactly. They just think that the point of the law is to remove people like this guy from society, so this is the system working as intended.

    4. If all of those are the same commentator, then the reader gets to watch them talk themselves into it. And then the rhetoric gets progressively wilder as the person succeeds in convincing themselves of the rightness of their narrative.

      Ha. People are crazy.

    5. We saw that already, where two cops were beating up a person of latin nationality, one cop incompetently shot the other, who then emptied his service pistol into the guy they had crushed. That was right here on Reason, recorded through a fence where the pigs couldn’t reach through and take the phone evidence.

  5. You mean Obama and Biden haven’t arrived in Baton Rouge yet to demand common-sense Police Control?

  6. Obama’s pimp ass won’t even go to baton rouge. That place turned into the wild west after Katrina.

    1. That place turned into the wild west after Katrina.

      So… BOOOOOOSH’S fault?

      1. Exactly. Clearly this is the fault of the politic that has been engineered to be the enemy of black people.

        While we are at it, this is bush’s fault, guns are to blame, and global sustainability change all combined.

        Solution: get rid of guns and for profit businesses then generous giants like this upstanding middle age career criminal will not be harassed by stupid pigs.

  7. “…Baton Rouge Police Department spokesman Cpl. L’Jean McKneely told The Advocate that “We give officers normally a day or so to go home and think about it” before questioning them after a shooting, adding that the stress can cause “tunnel vision” and produce bad information.”

    After yesterday, it’s no longer surprising what cops say out loud.

  8. Oh wow, this is a bad one. He was standing with hands up when they used him for a tackling dummy. What ever happened to putting his hands on the car and cuffing a suspect?

    1. The perp was armed and dangerous. They had no choice but to escalate.

  9. And nothing else happened.

  10. Happy libertarian moment, again, rat fucking baggers. We’re having an entire libertarian week.

  11. Louisiana is an open carry state, which allows for anyone over the age of 17 and legally permitted to carry a firearm to possess one in public. It’s highly unlikely Sterling would have been permitted to carry a weapon, given his extensive rap sheet which included drug, theft, domestic battery, and weapons charges.

    If the gun was in his pocket, that’s concealed carry, no open carry.

    Speaking of concealed carry in LA, check out the requirements:
    Provide all necessary documentation pertaining to training, arrest dispositions, medical summary dispositions, and divorce decrees (if applicable).

    WTF?

    1. “arrest dispositions” and “medical summary dispositions”,are so that you are showing that your arrest was CLEARED (no wrongdoing,no conviction),or your medical (psych) problems were cleared and not anything that would prohibit you from legally possessing a firearm. Showing you’re not on any drugs that would affect your judgment.

      1. I forgot; divorce decrees showing you had no domestic violence misdemeanors or judicial rulings that would keep you from legally possessing firearms.

  12. This is what I hate though–

    It’s highly unlikely Sterling would have been permitted to carry a weapon, given his extensive rap sheet which included drug, theft, domestic battery, and weapons charges. The New York Daily News reports family members have said Sterling was on probation at the time of his death and had been living at a transitional shelter/b> where he was known as a “a friendly man who stayed clean.”

    Sterling was a violent career criminal who was just out of his latest incarceration and already back to crime.

    He may have been friendly, but he was not ‘staying clean’. He was hustling. With an illegal gun in his pocket. While selling bootleg CDs.

    Sterling knew EXACTLY how screwed he could get. The CDs and the gun meant a trip back to prison. Whatever altercation got the cops called made his stay a bit longer.

    He rolled the dice anyway.

    Did he deserve to die? Of course not. But sometimes you crap out. 37 years old?. extensive rap sheet? he knew that. Sometimes it’s a risk you take.

    1. how did I not close that tag?

      1. Even with the tag open, I agree, yet another hill *not* to die on.

        1. I guess you should have told Alton Sterling that.

          1. *If*, at 37, after a lifetime of arrests, *I* had to tell Alton Sterling that he was taking his life in his own hands at every encounter with Police, I doubt there was much more that could’ve been done for him.

            Your suggestion that he didn’t know what he was or could be getting into runs counter to the facts. Moreover, look at the cases of (e.g.) Freddie Gray and Tamir Rice. What possible hope is there of holding these officers to any sort of fire for their acts? Even if they were raked over the coals, what does that say about the cases of Tamir Rice and Freddie Gray where no crimes were committed? Your intentions are more important than objectivity or any sort of rule of law?

            1. What was he supposed to do? The cops rolled up and tackled his ass.

              1. I don’t know. As Hugh points out below, he probably should’ve been delivering newspapers, installing aluminum siding or generally doing something else at the time. Cops shouldn’t be able to roll up and tackle him the way they did. However, the fact remains that they can and will. So, that said, Sterling didn’t just drop in from outer space and could be fairly certain that if he was still standing after the officer yelled, “Get on the ground!” a second time, a nice polite interaction was not going to be the outcome.

            2. I don’t think anything I said runs counter to the facts as there are precious few facts to go on. I imagine he knew precisely what the risks were of carrying a gun, just as he knew exactly what the risks were of not carrying a gun. He made his choice based on the limited options available to him, and ended up being thrown to the ground and shot in the back as a result.

              Also, for the record, objectivity and rule of law are red herrings since they are not real things.

        2. The way to the castle gate is littered with hills too unimportant to die on.

        3. Good luck Azathoth and mad.casual. Clearly everyone here knows there was no way Sterling did anything whatsoever to contribute to this situation. Any and all blame rests with the officers and Sterling shared no responsibility or accountability for his choices. Libertarian moment.

          Sad disclaimer that I guess I have to add: Yes, the cops escalated the situation and likely murdered this man completely unnecessarily and even if it’s clear that they did, they will not be punished for this in any way, shape, or form. This alone should not mean we can discuss the entirety of the decisions/actions leading up to the 30 second video we’ve seen.

    2. You’re right, the penalty for having a rap sheet is summary execution at the hands of the police. Good shoot, haters.

      Do go fuck yourself please.

      1. Read–“Did he deserve to die? Of course not.”

        I don’t think you understand the mindset that has a guy, knowing just how fucked he is if he gets caught, going out anyway. You have to watch it happen, see how it all gets rationalized. Hell, to REALLY understand, you need to have done it yourself.

        Sterling chose to have that illegally obtained and carried gun. He chose to have the CDs. That’s not rap sheet stuff–that’s three crimes. The rap sheet only makes them worse. Sterling knew all this before he walked out the door.

        When you enter into criminality, you know that you’re a helluvalot closer to getting killed than you were before.

        And people still roll those dice, knowing that.

        1. He should have chosen to be an engineer or a delivery driver or a college professor that morning instead. Maybe then he wouldn’t have gotten shot.

        2. I dunno why somebody with his options in life would choose to be a petty criminal. I mean, why not an investment banker/ Maybe a sportscaster? People are begging to hire ex-cons with long rap sheets of petty crimes for high-paying, prestigious jobs.

          1. I mean, why not an investment banker/ Maybe a sportscaster? People are begging to hire ex-cons with long rap sheets of petty crimes for high-paying, prestigious jobs.

            WTHF?!? He had a rough upbringing… so fucking what? Since when do libertarians hand out the high-paying perstigious jobs to anybody off the fucking street?

            Last I heard, it wasn’t at all difficult get into or out of this country, get a job, get a license, buy a home, and/or send large amounts of money out of the country without regard to any and all rap sheets. Hell, apparently, it’s readily feasible to do all of that while posting on social media that you’re a jihadist and working to perpetrate a mass killing.

            1. The point is that he can’t even get a job delivering papers or hanging siding while on probation from a felony. There’s no legitimate jobs for poor felons. Or very few. What is he supposed to do to eat when McDonalds won’t hire him and the store he’s selling CD’s out in front of won’t hire him and the car wash down the way won’t hire him? Whatever you’ve heard about rap sheets is wrong. They don’t need to hire felons for unskilled work. There are plenty of guys who aren’t on paper around.

              1. Brett, why don’t you want the cop suckers to be able to rub one out to this completely avoidable tragedy? All these pointless questions just break their concentration.

                Shitheels need self-love too, you know.

              2. There are plenty of guys who aren’t on paper around.

                Which is weird because that’s a crime but they still manage do it multiple times over and get jobs, both with felonies (foreign and domestic) and without and speaking English or No Habla-ing.
                Meanwhile poor Alton Brown is left to take the kinda-sorta, not-so high road that affords him just enough money to acquire a gun illegally, brandish it in order to piss off local merchants, and get inevitably shot dead because he wasn’t explicitly breaking the law the exact moment the police showed up *and* the camera started rolling and nothing else.

            2. Last I heard, it wasn’t at all difficult get into or out of this country, get a job, get a license, buy a home, and/or send large amounts of money out of the country without regard to any and all rap sheets.

              Well, sure, if your last name is “Clinton”.

              Or if you are here illegally and your rap sheet is in a foreign country, I suppose.

        3. I don’t suppose it occurs to you that the career options for a petty criminal are pretty fucking limited. Once you’re “in the system” no one is going to hire someone with an extensive rap sheet, but he’s still gotta eat somehow. I know, that’s what welfare is for right? It would have been better if he’d just sat around on his ass doing nothing while you and I pick up the tab for him (and his 5 kids).

          1. It would have been better if he’d just sat around on his ass doing nothing while you and I pick up the tab for him (and his 5 kids).

            And your libertarian solution is what? He gets 3 hots and a cot in an already overcrowded prison system or a local merchant calls the police about someone brandishing a gun outside their store and the 911 operator says, “You deal with it!”

            Personally, from a libertarian perspective, I’m in favor of the latter but I don’t think a private security firm dealing with a multiple felon notorious for pissing in his own pool and brandishing a gun would’ve produced a more favorable outcome.

            Oooh I know, maybe if we trained our officers more things would get better! Making them all TOP MEN will resolve the issue.

        4. I love the simultaneous hand waving of cop sucking and concern trolling. It’s a beautiful thing.

          Fucking performance art, if you ask me.

        5. Go back to Police One and collectively masturbate with the other boot lickers to another brave hero in blue getting to use his toys like God intended.

          1. The cops certainly bear responsibility for their actions, but does Alton Sterling bear any responsibility for his?

            Did he deserve to die, of course not. Did the cops escalate the situation, it sure looks like it. Could the cops have handled this better, without a doubt. All of that said, they’re not the only ones who had a chance to change the events that occurred. Observing and stating that reality here is apparently “boot licking” to some.

        6. Entering into criminality: opening a beer at 11:55PM January 15, 1920 and six minutes later, Jesus transmutes you into a criminal through the miracle of mystical fanatic lawmakers.
          Also, the chubby “I can’t breathe” murder victim was accused of something similar: selling singles without giving the looter kleptocracy a cut of the action. How many here would be free to make up lies and murder and intimidate witnesses for a month before a before a mock interrogation after holding someone down, beating and shooting them on video? –besides the police union goon infiltrators?

    3. So… (yet another) a perfect example to ensure that America won’t give a shit.

      1. Not the worst example though. So far it sounds like he had pretty much cleaned up his act for the most part. The gun is a problem, but not one that should have got him killed if it really was still in his pocket.
        I’d say he looks a lot more sympathetic than Treyvon Martin or that guy in St. Louis or wherever that was (unless some other info comes out).
        The fact is that most people who the police are going to treat like this aren’t going to be fine, upstanding citizens.

        1. The fact is that most people who the police are going to treat like this aren’t going to be fine, upstanding citizens.

          Sure.

          1. Most, not all. Wrong door raids and such are, mercifully, fairly rare. Police unnecessarily escalating encounters with petty criminals on the street is much less so.

            1. Wrong door raids and such are, mercifully, fairly rare. Police unnecessarily escalating encounters with petty criminals on the street is much less so.

              Your opinion sounds well rationalized.

              1. And based on fact, as far as I know. Do you have anything to counter it, or are you just a dick?

                1. Do you have anything to counter it, or are you just a dick?

                  Did you escalate this discussion to personal insults or did I?

                  Personally, brushing off the killing of completely innocent people because of a wrong address seems like a pretty dick move and, honestly, brushing off address mistakes in the hope or assertion that we can expect/discover more generally positive techniques to reliably employ in diverse and complex conflict resoltion scenarios sounds horribly irrational. But I assume it, somehow, makes sense to you and freely admit that I won’t ever understand it.

                  I thought I was being content to simply agree to disagree but, apparently, we have to agree to disagree and both be dicks about it.

        2. People who live in halfway houses who have the cash to buy an illegal gun haven’t ‘cleaned up their act’. They’re hustling.

          The fact is that most people who the police treat like this go completely under the radar. They get tackled and taken in instead of shot and no one knows their names. No one cares.

          There’ll be another Sterling along today. You may hear about him, you may not, and another tomorrow.

          The cops treatment of the Sterlings of the world is a problem–but it’s one that won’t ever be solved by pointing out Sterling because Sterling was a criminal–and Rhywun is right–not enough people will care.

          You need this stuff to be shown to be happening to non-criminals, over and over again. Then, maybe, people will start to care.

          Because it’s always going to be hard to get people to care about guys like Sterling. Because he didn’t.

          1. Well, I care.

            And there is nothing wrong with hustling a bit if you aren’t hurting anyone.

            You seem to have me confused with some kind of activist or something. I’m not trying to create a PR campaign that will appeal to the average asshole who doesn’t give a crap about how terrible the police are. If it’s outrageous, it’s outrageous, even if most people are shits who think this is fine as long as they can believe that it can’t happen to them.

    4. The gun was a bad move, but I think most of us agree that felons still have a right to defend themselves. So sure, he rolled the dice, but on going back to prison. You shouldn’t expect death.

      And do you know he was selling bootleg CDs? Cheap used CDs aren’t too hard to come by. And if they wanted to arrest him for that, they could have done that any day.

      Everything you say here is pretty irrelevant. As far as we can see at this point, he wasn’t doing anything to warrant a violent confrontation.

      1. Never mind.

        You don’t understand what I’m talking about.

        1. So, what are you talking about then? Because he is the sort of person more likely to be murdered by cops, we should care less that he was murdered by cops?

          The cops appear to have unnecessarily made the situation violent. I don’t care who the victim is or how shitty his life choices. It’s still outrageous. Unless you are trying to contradict that, I don’t know what the point of any of your observations is.

          1. I don’t know what the point of any of your observations is.

            Look, he almost cares. Almost! The important point is that Az gets to look like he gives any fucks about this guy, apathetically tut-tutting over the senseless violence, while having an asshole-fingering session over some low-life getting wasted by the cops.

            Why is that so hard for you to understand?

    5. Did Sterling have a gun or was that a throw down gun? I guess we don’t know because somehow all the body cameras malfunctioned again.

      1. The guy who ran the store knew Sterling had the gun–said he got it after he got mugged.

        So, not a ‘throw-down”

        1. Nope. Just a store owner trying to scrape out a living who has to deal with those same police officers on a daily basis.

        2. Oh… so the cops didn’t protect him from being mugged? I guess since he had a long rap sheet he wasn’t the kind of guy the gave a shit about being rolled.

    6. I’m not sure what you’re actually arguing here. That this was an entirely predictable outcome of his choices, and thus he should have made other choices? or just simply “dems da breaks?”

  13. The local fuzz lost a ruling where they argued for editing powers of the soon-to-come body cams.

    1. Which is why the body cams these cops were wearing just happened to fall off and missed the important parts of the confrontation. Funny, that.

  14. Let’s all jump to conclusions and pick our sides! Gloves or no gloves?

    1. Gloves are for pussies. Bare knuckle brawl, FTW!

  15. “We give officers normally a day or so to go home and think about it” before questioning them after a shooting, adding that the stress can cause “tunnel vision” and produce bad information.

    Do regular citizens get this same courtesy?

    1. Citizens? I think you mean “subjects”. I couldn’t say when we stopped being citizens and became subjects, exactly, but that’s where we are.

    2. So the guys who just committed homicide need get a day to get things straight.
      But the guy selling CD’s gets tazed, tackled and shot for lack of instant compliance.

      Yeah, I know he’s got a record and somebody “dropped a dime” on him for waving a gun, he still didn’t deserve to get gunned down like that. Two shots to the chest and backup, then three more shots. That’s called “Finish him, Danno”.

      Its easy to say he should have stopped fighting, but how does someone getting Tazed into “pain compliance” stop moving anyway. I may be wrong, but it looks like the the cops were looking to escalate when they started.

      One question. I guess someone gets to “Join the Club”. Is it just the trigger man that gets in, or does his partner that holds him down and yells “He’s got a gun” also get in for the assist?

  16. “Force always attracts men of low morality.”

    Albert Einstein

    1. The society that separates its scholars from its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting by fools.” ? Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War

  17. looks like both arms are under police control, I say its cold blooded murder

    1. Certainly appears like some riots are coming. Hard to defend that one.

      But hey, at least we do not have to worry about due process. Even though the cops usually get away with some egregious injustices, I would rather have rule of law and due process than simply indicting them to ward off the riots.

      Let’s bet on it.

  18. I don’t understand why cops are hassling people selling CDs.

    I don’t understand why people are selling CDs.

    1. Because you earn more interest than a savings account.

    2. If you ladder your CDs, you can compound your short term interest.

      This upstanding generous giant was just trying to beat the market.

  19. it’s curious that people here haven’t wondered why the suspect was ON THE GROUND and pinned.

    Most people who are arrested and comply with police never end up “on the ground and pinned”,so clearly,the suspect was -resisting arrest-,and he was a felon in possession of a firearm. Clearly,he wasn’t “going peaceably”.

    1. BTW,I saw a young black man pulled over by police yesterday,right outside my building. After checking the guy’s paperwork,the officer had the guy get out of his SUV,turn,and put his hands behind his back,which the guy did without any hassle,complaint,or delay. He was handcuffed and placed in the patrol car. and NEVER ended up on the ground.

  20. It’s ironic that so many commenters at a site called “Reason” are incapable of anything other than knee-jerk conclusion drawing and bias confirmation circle-jerks whenever one of these incidents occurs.

    1. Fuck off boot licker.

      They shot this guy for kicks.

      1. Of course they did. Why is it ok for a police officer to kill someone? They’re supposed to serve and protect all of use, not just some of us. Seems biased to me. http://www.usairwaysmastercard.com

  21. …despite being pinned on his back…

    …with an accessible (and illegally carried) gun in his pocket, while actively resisting arrest.

    But hey, don’t let me spoil your predetermined conclusion-based narrative.

    1. But hey, don’t let me spoil your predetermined conclusion-based narrative.

      Oh, precious. Even now, the libertarians are laughing at you. Mock, mock, mock.

  22. Everyone knows that Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, and Dylan Noble were killed for the same reason. Not submitting meekly to police authority.

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