Off Duty Cop Shoots At Kids; Kids Get Arrested, Off Duty Cop Does Not

An off-duty LAPD officer attempts to physically detain via assault a 13-year-old and one of the kid's pals tackles the officer; the officer pulls out a gun and shoots. Kids arrested; shooter is not.


The police are different from you and me: when they physically assault a 13-year-old and kidnap them and refuse to let go because they thought they heard a verbal threat, and then draw and fire a gun while surrounded by a bunch of kids, it is the bunch of kids who are questioned, some arrested, while nothing happens to the man who did the assaulting, kidnapping, and firing of the gun (so far, at least).

See this video of most of the incident, which happened Tuesday in Anaheim. More description and commentary below.

We see the off-duty officer reportedly with the Los Angeles police department, unnamed in any news account I've seen [UPDATE: He has now been publicly identified since original posting as Kevin Ferguson], assaulting and beginning to drag around 13-year-old Christian Dorscht. From their dialogue, what seems to have led up to this scene is the officer insisting that Dorscht threatened to shoot him. (Exactly what defensive end-game the officer saw in grabbing hold of and refusing to let go the kid is unclear.) Dorscht insists he merely threatened to "sue" the off-duty cop, and was verbally engaging him to begin with because he alleges the off-duty officer had yelled at a young girl on his lawn, calling her a "cunt."

[UPDATE: Here's more video, which I had seen and which fed into my understanding of the incident, starting before the one above does, showing that the off-duty officer's capturing of Dorscht began before the action of this video, though who said what to who is still from prior to this videoed account.]

Starting at around 2:05 in the version of the video embedded above, after minutes of the off-duty officer grappling with and dragging Dorscht around, one of the other kids watching the scene tries to tackle the off-duty officer. A few seconds after that the officer pulls out his gun and fires it. Amazingly, no one is hurt. There are a lot of kids milling about the whole situation.

Even after firing his gun, the officer continues to physically detain Dorscht, though the video is now understandably being shot from farther away, what with the gun being fired by the maniac.

Around five minutes in to the video more police arrive, and all the kids in the area are forced to sit down, see around 5:45 in the video.

When the police begin interacting with Dorscht, it is the 13-year-old who appears to be forced to the ground by police, see starting around 7:45 in the video.

The man doing the assaulting, kidnapping, and firing of a gun is never seen to be manhandled or detained at all, merely carrying on a conversation with a uniformed officer after a very perfunctory pat around 6:45 in the video.

As OC Weekly reports:

Anaheim police finally arrived to detain Christian and his friends. He was booked at Orange County Juvenile Hall for criminal threats and battery. Police arrested a 15-year-old for assault and battery before releasing him to his parents….

As for the off-duty cop? Anaheim's finest declined to arrest him. The LAPD is conducting an internal affairs investigation into his conduct. APD's Homicide Unit is looking into the circumstances surrounding the single gunshot.

According to later reporting from local CBS-TV 8, the unnamed LAPD officer is on administrative leave now.

That report also says that Anaheim cops found no evidence that the guy who had assaulted and kidnapped a 13-year-old and shot a gun near a crowd of kids had done anything worth an arrest, although the kidnapped and assaulted kid who they were told by the assaulting kidnapper who fired a gun had threatened him verbally was arrested. (The Anaheim cops had not seen the video yet, they claim. Nor have they arrested the shooter since, as of this posting.)

Dorscht has since been released from custody.

The unnamed shooter's union, the Los Angeles Police Protective League, CBS-TV 8 reports:

defended the off-duty officer, saying he acted in self-defense.

"The publicly available cell phone video shows that our officer was physically assaulted by multiple individuals and the officer sustained injuries," according to the union.

"There is no question, however, that when a police officer is attacked, they have a right and a duty to protect themselves, no matter the age of the offender," according to the LAPPL.

Since the release of the video of yesterday's incident, protests have occurred in Anaheim. More on the protests and Anaheim city government reaction. Dorscht's family is already threatening to sue.