Excessive Force

Was the Shooting of Rayshard Brooks 'Lawful but Awful'?

Every encounter with armed agents of the state has the potential to end tragically, which is a good reason to minimize such encounters.

|

The killing of Rayshard Brooks during a Friday night arrest for driving under the influence provoked protests in Atlanta, prompted the immediate dismissal of the officer who shot him, and led to the police chief's resignation. Kalfani N. Turè, an assistant professor of criminal justice at Quinnipiac University, describes Officer Garrett Rolfe's use of deadly force against Brooks as "lawful but awful." That characterization is worth unpacking.

Brooks had fallen asleep in his car at a Wendy's drive-through, which is what prompted the police call. The encounter between Brooks and the police, which The New York Times reconstructed based on body camera, bystander, and security camera footage, was initially polite, even amicable, until it suddenly escalated into a deadly confrontation.

"All right, you good?" Officer Devin Brosnan inquires after waking Brooks up at 10:42 p.m. He asks Brooks to move his car to a nearby parking space, initially suggesting that he take a nap there. Seven minutes after arriving, Brosnan calls for another officer.

After Rolfe arrives at 10:56 p.m., he consults with Brosnan. Rolfe asks Brooks to get out of the car and asks if he has any weapons. Brooks says he does not and consents to a pat-down. Rolfe performs a seven-minute field sobriety test.

Brooks is "compliant and friendly with the officers throughout this time," the Times notes. He admits that he has been drinking but says he is not too intoxicated to drive. Brooks suggests that the officers allow him to lock up his car and walk to his sister's house, which is nearby. "I can just go home," he says.

Rolfe is not keen on that idea. "Why would you walk home?" he asks. "I just don't want to be in violation of anybody," Brooks replies. "Do you think that you would be in violation of something if you were to drive your vehicle?" Rolfe wonders.

Rolfe asks Brooks to blow into a breathalyzer, and Brooks agrees. After completing the breath test, Rolfe says Brooks has "had too much drink to be driving" and begins to handcuff him. Brooks pulls away and ends up tussling with both officers on the pavement of the parking lot.

"Stop fighting," Rolfe says. "You're going to get tased," warns Brosnan, who draws his stun gun. Brooks grabs Brosnan's Taser and continues wrestling with the officers. Then he stands up and punches Rolfe, who fires his Taser at Brooks. Brooks runs away, still holding Brosnan's Taser. Rolfe tries to tase Brooks again, then reaches for his handgun. Brooks fires Brosnan's Taser toward Rolfe, although his aim is high. Rolfe drops his Taser and fires three shots at Brooks, hitting him in the back.

Rolfe calls for an ambulance at 11:24 p.m., about a minute after the shooting. The officers "begin to provide medical assistance," bandaging Brooks' torso. An ambulance arrives at 11:30 p.m. and takes Brooks to a hospital, where he dies after surgery.

Why does Turè suggest the shooting was "lawful"? Because "officers are trained that they have the right to escalate their use of force if they believe someone is threatening to incapacitate them," the Times explains. Brooks had already taken Brosnan's Taser. If he had managed to use it effectively against Rolfe, the officer might have been thinking, Brooks also could have grabbed Rolfe's gun.

It is worth noting that Tasers, although marketed as "less than lethal," can kill people. A 2012 study by Amnesty International documented 500 cases since 2001 in which arrestees died after they were tased. The criminal charges against six Atlanta officers accused of assaulting two protesters on May 30 describe the Taser as "a deadly weapon." If Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard applies that classification consistently, it follows that Rolfe used deadly force in response to deadly force.

Why is the shooting nevertheless "awful"? To start with, it would not have happened if the cops had let Brooks walk home. Although it may be too much to expect such lenience from officers in the face of a probable DUI, that sort of thing has been known to happen when the suspect happens to be a cop.

It also seems likely that Brooks would still be alive if he had not resisted his DUI arrest. Unlike George Floyd, who was killed by a gratuitously prolonged neck restraint when he posed no threat to the officers who were arresting him, Brooks fought Rolfe and Brosnan once it became clear that he was going to jail.

A third opportunity for de-escalation came when Brooks ran away from the cops. Instead of giving chase, Turè suggests, Rolfe and Brosnan could have tracked him down later based on his car registration, or they could have called for more officers to help subdue him without using deadly force.

The second option might not have worked out very well for Brooks either. But the first option, although hard to imagine once Brooks had assaulted the two officers, surely would have been preferable given the risks and benefits involved in this particular arrest. Brooks was on foot, posing no threat to the general public, and running away, posing no threat to the officers as long as they let him do so.

An ordinary citizen who used deadly force in a situation like this would have a hard time defending his actions. But police officers are allowed to use force when they have probable cause to arrest someone, and they have no obligation to let him get away when he resists, even when the stakes are small. At the same time, the Supreme Court has said police may not use deadly force against a fleeing suspect unless it is "necessary to prevent the escape and the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others."

The legal question in this case is whether Brooks' possession of a Taser and his attempt to use it against Rolfe constituted such a threat. Did Rolfe act based on a reasonable fear of "death or serious physical injury," or did he needlessly shoot someone who was merely trying to escape? If Rolfe faces criminal charges as a result of the shooting and the case goes to trial, it is not hard to predict which interpretation jurors will be inclined to favor, especially given their general reluctance to second-guess such decisions by police officers.

The facts of this case distinguish it from such obvious travesties as Floyd's death or the 2015 shooting of Walter Scott, an unarmed man who was shot in the back as he ran from police after a traffic stop for a broken tail light in North Charleston, South Carolina. Even in the latter case, a state jury deadlocked on the question of whether Officer Michael Slager's use of deadly force was justified, although he subsequently pleaded guilty to a federal civil rights charge and received a 20-year prison sentence.

Criminal charges aside, it seems clear that something went horribly wrong the night that Rayshard Brooks fell asleep in his car outside a fast-food restaurant. The incident highlights that fact that every encounter with armed agents of the state has the potential to end tragically, which is a good reason to minimize such encounters, to weigh their risks against their benefits, and to avoid escalation whenever possible.

In this case, the tenor of Brooks' interaction with the officers changed dramatically when the handcuffs came out. Yet his alleged offense is a misdemeanor that is typically handled with sanctions such as fines, probation, community service, and license suspension (although it theoretically can be punished by up to 10 days in jail). It seems like the sort of offense that could be handled by a citation, along with precautions aimed at ensuring that an intoxicated driver does not get back behind the wheel.

Under Georgia law, however, arrests are authorized for most moving violations—not just driving under the influence, but routine offenses like speeding. Such overcriminalization is a standing invitation to hostile encounters that may lead to violence, as happened in this case. The value of enforcing the DUI law, and especially the added value of routinely enforcing it with custodial arrests, cannot possibly justify the loss of a man's life. And while that outcome is far from typical, it is the sort of danger that legislators should consider whenever they authorize police officers to use force.

NEXT: Public and Private Sectors Clash on Contact Tracing

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Did Rolfe act based on a reasonable fear of “death or serious physical injury,” or did he needlessly shoot someone who was merely trying to escape?

    If the officer’s fear of “death or serious physical injury” at the hand of a suspect fleeing in possession of a Taser is reasonable, then it stands to reason that subduing a suspect with a Taser cannot reasonably be considered a nonlethal use of force. Is this really the hill law enforcement wants to (excuse me) die on?

    1. it stands to reason that subduing a suspect with a Taser cannot reasonably be considered a nonlethal use of force.

      It isn’t.
      The companies that make Tasers and the police forces that use them call them “less lethal” generally.

      1. The threat of a “weapon” to potentially incapacitate an officer while confronting a suspect 1-on-1 would justify the use of deadly force. What if the officer was hit with the Taser / stun gun and, while incapacitated, the suspect took the officer’s firearm and shot him?

        1. Gave up on “TULPA FOLLOWER” already I see, you gross fucking bigot.

          1. This guy is a bot. Ignore him.

            1. “Tulpa Disciple
              June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
              It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

              You are Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER and you said that.

              Got ya

                1. Cool you denounce yourself!

                  “Tulpa Disciple
                  June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
                  It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

                  Yes, you are Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER and you said that.

                  Got ya!

                  Seriously, N-bombs and lying when you get caught? God damn youre gross.

                  1. I am now making extra $19k or more every month from home by doing very simple and easy job online from home. I have received exactly $20845 last month from this home job.USd Join now this job and start making extra cash online by follow instruction on the given website.

                    See…………..Money90

          2. Look, I can do it, too!

            1. I quit working at shoprite to work online and with a little effort I easily bring in around $45 to 85 per/h. Without a doubt, this is the easiest and most financially rewarding job I’ve ever had.DSp I actually started 6 months ago and this has totally changed my life.

              For more details visit……….Read More

        2. He had armed backup, on site, with him.

          CB

          1. Is “on site” equal to 50 yards away?

            1. “Tulpa Disciple
              June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
              It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

              You are Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER and you said that.

              Got ya

              1. I’ve already moved on. I learned your 0x0049 trick. I study your every move.

                1. Cool you denounce yourself Rabbi!

                  “Tulpa Disciple
                  June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
                  It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

                  Yes, you are Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER and you said that.

                  Got ya!

                  Seriously, N-bombs and lying when you get caught? God damn youre gross.

          2. and both cops had already tangled with Brookes at the same time and had lost, he tases one and comes back for the other’s pistol, how do you think that would have gone?

        3. While the idea that an officer could be incapacitated works for a lone officer. There were two officers here. Had one been tassed the backup could protect him. I don’t think lethal force was necessary.

          1. You’re asking human beings to take time to reason through the issue in mere seconds. A suspect grabs one of your weapons and fires it at you? You have to rely on System One (see Kahneman). This wasn’t a situation with a subdued and cooperative suspect being abused by a police officer. This was an intoxicated man discovered behind the wheel of his running car basically passed out who then fought police and stole one of their weapons. Not saying it’s right, but it’s a bit more complicated than what happened to Eric G, or George F, or Breonna T.

            1. There is a small problem with this narrative. According to what I read elsewhere, the ME says Brooks was shot in the back. He was fleeing and not a threat to the officer at the point the officer fired. \

              Standard rules SCOTUS has applied to lethal force by police. It doesn’t matter if there was a thread 5 minutes ago, or 1 minute ago, there has to be an active threat at the moment lethal force is used.

              1. He was doing a pretty good job aiming that Taser while running away. Personally, I can’t walk and chew bubble gum at the same time.

              2. Do you not remember the “Hands up don’t shoot incident? The autopsy of the gentle giant 19 year old showed several bullets entered his back when he turned to retreat after he tried to take the officer’s firearm. The reaction time between recognizing a deadly threat & pulling the trigger is plenty of time for fired bullets to enter the back of the threat that reacts to seeing the gun by turning & retreating. Also, many bullets are fired because all self defense with firearms training stresses shooting until you recognize the threat is over. That means if the gun’s magazine is empty you drop the mag & insert a loaded one then resume engaging the threat. I am surprised only 3 shots were fired with 2 hitting Brooks. At least 1 of those bullets must have severed Brook’s spinal cord or was way off the mark & was a head shot.

                1. None of the bullets that hit Michael Brown entered from the back.
                  They were all fired as he charged.

                  1. I quit working at shoprite to work online and with a little effort I easily bring in around $45 to 85 per/h. Without a doubt, this is the easiest and most financially rewarding job I’ve ever had.CSd I actually started 6 months ago and this has totally changed my life.

                    For more details visit……….Read More

              3. I did some research on this, including talking to retired cops. The electrode is power forward with a flash and bang (pyrotechnic device). That means it could be mistaken for a firearm. Police are also trained to announce when firing a Taser”Taser, Taser Taser” because of that, which otherwise will bring more gunfire.
                Now in the heat of the moment, you expect a policeman chasing a suspect, to know if the man had a weapon, to determine if he stole the other officers service revolver or Taser, and if their is a one, two or more shot capacity to the weapon he just fired?
                He has shown a willingness to fire it at the Officer and “innocent bystanders”. He is a threat as long as armed and willing to fire, even while fleeing. Do cops get to shoot at bank robbers fleeing a seen if they are firing at them? Of course! I can see why the Officer fired.

            2. No, we are asking human beings to hesitate and think of something else before they resort to homicide.
              If the answer is “just shoot”, I don’t need police for that. I’m a better shot anyway.

        4. “What if the officer was hit with the Taser / stun gun and, while incapacitated, the suspect took the officer’s firearm and shot him?”

          That would be impossible while fleeing. If the suspect stopped while still in taser range, turned around, and raised the taser to firing position towards the officers, shooting him would be clearly self-defense. Shooting a suspect who is running away is not, even if he is carrying a short-range weapon.

    2. The criminal charges against six Atlanta officers accused of assaulting two protesters on May 30 describe the Taser as “a deadly weapon.”

    3. At least two more factors need to be considered:
      1. Whether the officers knew that Brooks was pointing a taser at them, not some other weapon that he happened to have. How well could they see? How confident were they that they had thoroughly searched him for weapons? Of course, the officers can lie after the fact about what their understanding of the situation was, so good luck at getting at any truth.
      2. It looks like they are having this gunfight right next to a line of cars in the drive-thru. Were the officers putting people at risk by engaging in a gunfight in that particular place?
      Oh, and you can throw in:
      3. In the 7+ minutes that they were standing around, did the officers run any checks on Brooks? Does he have a record or anything?

      These are the kinds of details that may come out in the next few days. Like I posted elsewhere, it’s almost universal these days that big news stories are misreported in the first day or two.

      1. What I am saying is that this nigger got what was coming to him even if the faggot police did act poorly.

        1. Great use of 0x0049, “Tulpa Disciple”!

          1. Fuck off bigot.

          2. Look, I can do it, too!

      2. 7 minutes you saw on camera. The whole encounter took place over 50 minutes.

        1. Of course. I was referring specifically to the time Brosnan was waiting for backup, but they might have done a check on Brooks at some other time.

          (Let’s see how long it takes for Tulpa to see this comment and reply… starting … now…)

          1. Hi Rabbi, you gross fucking bigot.

          2. Took him three minutes. Not bad.

      3. He has quite a criminal record. False imprisonment, child abuse, domestic violence, obstruction of law enforcement, theft by receiving stolen goods, and more.

        1. Can you link to a source?

          I saw one (questionable) source that lists a few of these things, but not everything you list.

      4. They already knew he had no other weapons. They had his car and his ID.

    4. Escalation of force. He was questioned about his being asleep. He admitted to have been drinking so a breathalyzer was used to determine he was, in fact, past the legal limit.

      The car was in a drive through, not in a parking space, so he was, in fact dui. When the officers attempted to arrest him and place him in handcuffs (Normal for almost anybody being arrested for the same thing), he attempted to get away and the two officers fought with him.

      So basically the charges were, driving under the influence, assault and battery of two uniformed officers, resisting arrest and evading arrest. Then add-on attempted assault with a dangerous weapon, which could have resulted in the death of the officer who could have hit his head and died.

      Now, should they have shot him? Looking at the video with time to run the scenario in your mind, you would say no, however in the heat of the moment the officers could have reacted to the aiming motion and not know if it was a gun.

      I say that the two sides of this are.
      1. The officers made a mistake that was done in the heat of the moment and, while being fired might be the appropriate thing to do, prosecution for murder is imho not warranted.

      2. Mr. Brooks could have just continued with his amiable behavior and took his dui like a responsible adult. Is he responsible for his death? Not exactly, no, however i do think that, had he just complied and gone to jail, he would still be alive. So, imho he bears some responsibility.

      And isn’t that what Libertarianism is about? Letting every man take responsibility for his own life and not jeopardizing the lives of others?

      1. Not to justify Brooks or even the cries to defund the police, however-

        DUI is in a no man’s land of victimless crime. A more considered approach would have been to confiscate his keys and call him a taxi. Passed out in a drive-through isn’t a threat to anyone.

        A portion of the blame can be placed on the shoulders of MADD. Their escalation of drunk driving laws to be more punitive, justifying even checkpoints to save lives and thousands of dollars in fines and classes has been just as much a further encroachment of law enforcement as drug laws.

        There was a recent interview by Thaddeus Russell of Aya Gruber discussing carceral feminism, and while MADD isn’t directly a part of, shares much of the same venn diagram.

        At some point, there will need to be a reckoning of women’s role in the heavy handiness of law enforcement.

        1. One of the things my wife and I have in common is that we were both (separately and years apart) hit head-on by drunk drivers. I suffered memory loss and was unconscious for a long time. My wife will always walk with a limp and have leg and foot pain.
          Driving impaired is not a victimless crime.

          1. Yeah, and I’ve lost a few friends to drunk drivers myself.

            However, there is world of difference between taking drivers who are driving erratically off the road when they are an actual threat and DUI checkpoints when they are a potential threat, and more than one way to get said drivers off of the road.

            1. The problem with this is that most drunk drivers are not very drunk. They are not weaving all over the road. They are just a little sloppier, a little slower to react, a bit less likely to notice a problem ahead. And, because of the numbers, those are the drunk drivers who kill and injure the majority of people who are killed or injured by drunk drivers.

              People who have had two beers at a bar know that they are not seriously impaired. They do not want the hassle and expense of calling a taxi or asking someone to pick them up. If all they risk is a ticket they will drive home… and a small but significant percentage of them will kill or injure someone.

              If we really want to stop this the only way is severe punishment for those little infractions – severe enough that people who have had two drinks will decide to find an alternative to driving while even slightly impaired.

              The downside of that is that some people who are caught up in this will decide to run or fight rather than take that punishment and a small percentage of those people will end up killed or injured by the police or killed or injured accidentally while trying to get away.

              Pick your poison.

              1. Same arguments can be made for people who text and drive, drive when tired, have kids in the back, etc. Do you support the same level of enforcement and penalties for those as well?

                Per 2016 stats, there were 5,419,000 auto mobile accidents with 1 million arrests for drunk driving and a bit over 10,000 drunk driving fatalities.

                Drunk driving isn’t even a rounding error in total number of accidents.

                1. Perhaps it’s not even a rounding error in part because the police don’t just give drunk driver’s a ride home and ask them not to drink while driving in the future?

                  I knew one guy who had several DUIs and, until he finally did some real prison time, continued to drink and drive. After a good stint in prison, he didn’t do that any more (he also lost, I’d guess, at least 80 pounds while in the state’s care – I guess the food ain’t so great at the Graybar Hotel but if you’re in the right private suite you do get free delivery to your room!). Enforcement got his attention and changed his behavior at least for a while.

                  According to the Insurance Information Institute, in 2018 drunk driving fatalities accounted for 29% of motor vehicle deaths while in 1985 they accounted for 41%. But motor vehicle fatalities have also decreased overall (in part due to safety features) and the absolute number of fatalities attributed to drunk driving dropped from 18,125 in 1985 to 10,511 in 2018. That’s about 7,500 lives saved a year (some of which might be attributable to better safety devices/features).

                  Note that the CDC reports that there were 14,542 homicides via firearms in 2017. Some of these are, of course, not criminal (self defense/legit police shootings, and even non-criminal accidents). So, if we are willing to accept the current level of drunk driving deaths, we should also be almost as willing to accept the current level of criminal homicides via firearms (esp. since quite a significant number of these homicides are criminals shooting criminals).

                  1. So treat what is essentially a medical problem (alcoholism) with prison.

                    Good for you.

                    The Insurance Information Institute doesn’t distinguish between drunk driver deaths and others killed by drunk drivers (but very compelling of you to make a distinction for firearm deaths), so figuring a very generous 70/30 split, that would place drunk drivers well below most other causes of death on the road, and yet it is singled out as requiring so much more enforcement, and the justification falls apart.

                    “we should also be almost as willing to accept the current level of criminal homicides via firearms”

                    What does this even mean?

              2. Most drunk drivers involved in accidents where other people are injured have a BAC of .15 or greater. According to NHTSA statistics.

                1. Yeah, that’s quite a bit more than 2 beers. I’d need to drink at least 6 beers in an hour to come close to that level (and not some piss-weak 3.5% beer either; something between 4.5 & 5%).

                2. But there is continuing pressure to reduce the BAC level that qualifies for DUI down to a level where using mouthwash would put you over the limit.

            2. However, there is world of difference between taking drivers who are driving erratically off the road when they are an actual threat and DUI checkpoints when they are a potential threat, and more than one way to get said drivers off of the road.

              Are you stupid?

              They were trying to take him in because he was able to come back and get his car once they were gone.

              They had no way to make sure he wouldn’t drive again.

              But, as with most, I have no idea why he didn’t just take the DUI. He was caught. It was over. If he’d been cooperative he might even just have been drunk tanked for the night.

              1. “Are you stupid?”

                Probably.

                “A more considered approach would have been to confiscate his keys and call him a taxi.”

                But I’m at least literate.

                1. He might have another set of keys… But since the only time the officers saw him driving drunk was when he drove a few feet to a parking space _at the officer’s request_, was a drunk driving arrest really justified? Maybe he drove drunk to get where they found him, and maybe he drank after he got there. He may also have been within the legal limit when he stopped the car and went to sleep, but with unabsorbed alcohol in his stomach that later raised his BAC. As for the “in control” of a parked car argument, arresting people for pulling off the road and sleeping it off will obviously cause drunks to continue driving and increase the risk to the public.

                  It’s clear why he resisted – he felt the police tactics were unfair. First, they talked to him reasonably, and even asked him to move his car so it wasn’t blocking business, and _then_ they escalated it to an arrest. Resisting was stupid, but this seems like the cops entrapped him.

                  1. He was asleep IN the drive-thru.

                  2. I believe in at least some states, if you’re sitting in your car in the driver’s seat in a place where drunk driving is prohibited (I think that includes privately owned parking lots which are open to the general public), have the keys to the car, and are drunk, that’s enough for a DWI charge to stick.

                    There’s a writeup by a lawyer who seems to specialize in DUI cases in the Atlanta area. Per this, if your BAC is 0.08 within three hours of driving, you’re DUI. Also, “actual physical control of moving vehicle” (note NOT “a vehicle that is moving”) while drunk is sufficient. If the officers knew when the call was received and that call indicated how long Brooks had been interfering with the drive through line (which would also be easily collaborated with video), that would likely nail the three hour requirement.

                    I’ll bet many people who kill their spouses and children think the police tactics used to build their case and arrest them are “unfair” – it turns out the suspect’s right to resist arrest is not based on if they think the arrest is “fair”. If someone thinks an arrest is “unfair”, they should take it up with their lawyer and a judge (and, possibly, jury).

                    It is quite normal for police to evaluate a situation before deciding to effect an arrest — that includes talking to suspects and witnesses. Until they actually decide to effect an arrest, they tend to be quite calm and friendly as that results in them getting more information and also reduces the risk of the suspect deciding to attack them or run because it’s become obvious an arrest is likely in the offing. Pretty much, when feasible, for their safety and that of people around the area and to reduce the flight risk, the first strong indication that you are going to be arrested is something like “Put your hands behind your head, you are under arrest”.

              2. But, as with most, I have no idea why he didn’t just take the DUI.

                It’s in his criminal record (Reason won’t let my account post links, but you can google the Clayton County GA court website and put his name in the search bar. It brings up everything he did over the last ten years, and it’s a lot). In August 2016, he pled guilty to five counts of theft. He got three years probation and a one-year suspended sentence.

                Sometime in 2018, he violated his probation and a warrant was put out for this arrest. They finally caught him in January of this year, and his court-appointed lawyer must have made a hell of an argument (probably by appealing to the fact that he had kids) because his probation was re-instituted.

                It probably dawned on him as he was getting put in the police vehicle that a DUI charge would result in him going right back to jail, and he freaked out.

          2. I’m sorry you were involved with a drunk driver, but I have never understood the link between being involved with a drunk driver and draconian drunk driving laws. Would it be better somehow if all that had happened to you due to a sleepy driver?

            If someone has been drinking, rear ends my car and I get whiplash, they will throw the book at him, but if the same thing happens because he fell asleep and rear ended me, that is somehow a less punishable/less severe crime? It’s cold comfort to my foot how the accident happened.
            As another poster pointed out, drinking levels in most states are so low (so cops can get more arrests and insurance companies can increase rates) that they don’t even compete with sleepy drivers, texting drivers, tired drivers, distracted drivers…..
            I think Radley Balko makes a strong libertarian argument that we should do away with drunk drinking specific penalties and simply enforce reckless driving laws. Drinking and Driving is another surveillance law that makes Swiss cheese of the 4th amendment for drivers that are not drinking and promotes police corruption through faulty field alcohol tests that overwhelmingly give false positives. As with all laws that do not have an actual victim, their enforcement does more harm than good. In this case it cost this guy his life.

            1. The only thing that cost this guy his life was his decision to resist arrest, assault the arresting officers, and grab their taser. Had he simply complied, he’d be alive today. Please tell when the laws making resisting arrest a crime were repealed if you’re black? I must have missed that headline.

            2. Getting drunk takes an overt action over an extended period of time and then choosing to take control of a moving vehicle — it’s pretty binary and pretty easy to avoid, just don’t drink and drive.

              On the other hand, driving while distracted (perhaps by work or by the fact that you are listening to the radio or talking to a passenger or admonishing a child in the car to stop screaming and kicking the seat) or falling asleep while driving doesn’t have the precursor explicit binary decision of deciding to drink before driving.

              There is no explicit measure of “sleepiness”. Even getting a full night’s sleep does not insure that you will be 100% at maximum alertness at any point over the next 12 hours. As well, slight drowsiness can hit a driver when there’s no practical safe place to pull over (tens of miles between off ramps for example).

              Drunk driving is not an “accident”, it is a premeditated act which is very simple to avoid. I drink plenty (and have certainly been way above 0.08 BAC many, many, many times) including when I’m out socially but, in over 40 years I’m very confident I have NEVER driven with a BAC >0.08 (even when the legal limit was higher).

          3. Trying to frame drunk driving as a victimless crime is simply absurd. I would also add that being so drunk that you pass out in a drive through is clearly out of line, and he clearly had no business being behind the wheel. Do we potentially overreact sometimes, yet. However, in this situation, that is clearly not the case.

            1. Person drives home drunk without incidence.

              Where is the victim?

              Person drives drunk without another person around for thousands of miles.

              Where is the victim?

              1. Where is the victim if someone takes a fully automatic weapon into a populated public park and begins shooting indiscriminately but happens not to hit anyone and all the bullets are harmlessly absorbed by surrounding hillsides?

                So, should we allow people to take fully automatic weapons into populated public parks and fire them indiscriminately?

                (Note that I’m not offering an opinion on of it should be legal to possess a loaded, fully automatic weapon in a populated public park. Such possession could be legal but firing it for no legitimate reason with no intended target could still be illegal.)

                If a domestic terrorist builds a large fission nuclear bomb there are no victims until the minute she detonates it and kills hundreds of thousands in New York City.

                So, should building such a bomb be completely legal and only the (suicidal) “submillisecond” act of connecting the green wire to the red wire resulting in the eventual deaths of hundreds of thousands be illegal? How might you police that law?

                1. DUI is in a no man’s land of victimless crime

                  Re-read it over. and. over. again until you can surmise a guess as to why that phrasology was chosen, and then consider that there is some contextualization that goes with DUIs, therefore treating all instances the same is pure sophistry, and in your list of hypotheticals consider what if the population gets sick of police intrusion into their lives with blunt laws to a degree where they feel compelled to riot.

                  What then?

        2. I have a coworker who lost relatives last year due to a drunk driver. Not a victimless crime.

        3. Victimless BS! DUI has had many victims. My wife was rear ended by a alcoholic who was on supervised probation from his latest in a long line of DUI convictions & just pulled out from the curb after patronizing a liquor store. One of my grandson’s aunts was murdered by a drunk 20 something female who was driving the wrong way on a freeway. While the perp’s vehicle wasn’t the involved in the fatal collision. The car in the lane the wrong way driver was in swerved into the victim’s vehicle sending her at freeway speeds into a ditch. The perp drove 35 more mile before being stop a a bridge toll plaza. The only reason their were only 2 victims is it was at 4 AM. If it had been at 7AM there would have been many more victims; because, at that hour there are thousands of cars traveling the freeway.

      2. Then add-on attempted assault with a dangerous weapon, which could have resulted in the death of the officer who could have hit his head and died.

        Why is a taser a deadly weapon in the hands of a normal man but a tool of compliance in the hands of an LEO? Because the LEO’s used the taser on him. Multiple times.

      3. Best part of all of this is that a felon who was serving a 7 year sentence for beating and abusing his children, was let out of jail early because of the corona virus.

        Although it is funny that the article states that “Brooks had fallen asleep in his car at a Wendy’s drive-through”, as if he was tired for working the late shift to provide for his children and not that he was blind drunk and had driven there and passed out.

    5. “ends up tussling”

      This is why we hate the #EnemyOfThePeople.

      When questioned, Brooks thought he was in the wrong town. He resisted arrest, attacked the police physically, took a taser from one, then fired the taser at one.

      The police only fired after witnessing Brooks commit two violent felonies against them.

      This upstanding citizen was convicted for child endangerment and physical neglect, but had been released early on parole because corona. Likely why he fought – because a parole violation would have sent him back.

      https://www.tigerdroppings.com/rant/o-t-lounge/rayshard-brooks-was-on-parole-due-to-covid-cruelty-to-chidren-obstruction-of-police-etc/90478955/

      “The value of enforcing the DUI law, and especially the added value of routinely enforcing it with custodial arrests, cannot possibly justify the loss of a man’s life.”

      Drunk drivers kill about 10,000 people a year in the US.

      1. Drunk drivers kill about 10,000 people a year in the US.

        I don’t see your point.

        114 people were killed in NYC in 2018 by careless drivers. Not drunk drivers, just careless ones.

    6. Can I also point out everyone in the media who covered this story have been saying that Brooks was “asleep” behind the wheel of his car in a Wendy’s drive thru as if the Cops just found him like that and by sheer accident happened to discover out that the guy “asleep” behind the wheel of his car had been drinking. Why dont they say Brooks was found passed out drunk in his car and thats why the police arrested him?

      Because that would imply that Brooks had been breaking the law when the police began talking to him. And God knows we cant have that.

    7. “Although it may be too much to expect such lenience from officers in the face of a probable DUI”

      Time out.

      There are very good criticisms to be leveled at policing in the U.S.

      But DUI is not a trivial offense. It is willfully putting the lives of other innocent people at risk. If your line of argument is predicated on the notion that the police ought to have overlooked it, perhaps you need a different poster child for police overreach.

  2. Excellent article, although Brooks was very stupid to resist arrest, to take the cop’s taser, to flee, and to fire the taser at the cop. It’s certainly “possible” that Brooks, having assaulted a police officer with a deadly weapon, would seek to steal someone’s car, threatening them with the taser in the process, in order to flee Atlanta. The police would probably considered justified in thinking that Brooks constituted a danger both to themselves and others.

    1. True.

      Although in this case there was no time for such an analysis. This went from routine DUI arrest to gunshots in just a handful of seconds.

      The considerations were “pointing a weapon at me”.

      That is all there could possibly have been time for. There was no time to weigh a series of options and roleplay through their possible outcomes. That’s what training is for. See – react. No steps between.

      So while it is useful to consider multiple options as an exercise in improving policing tactics, it is most decidedly not useful in the context of judging this particular officer’s actions.

      1. I doubt it was “routine DUI arrest.” Brooks had a lengthy criminal history, including theft, obstruction, battery, false imprisonment, and child cruelty. Seems pretty likely the officers would have run his criminal background based on his license plates and seen this before approaching the vehicle. He then escalated the DUI situation by slamming a cop’s head into the concrete (which can be lethal), stealing a Taser, running, and turning to fire the Taser. It’s not hard to imagine the cops putting all of this together to conclude that he was an armed threat to themselves and/or the public. And for all we know, the cop who shot him may not have been in the best mental state (from the aforementioned concrete head slamming).

        1. Another black man worthy of sainthood….

          1. Is sainthood also necessary in order to avoid getting shot if you’re not black?

        2. And of course, the family’s having a press conference to “demand justice” and to beg for money.

          There’s really no good end to this. If police can’t intervene in a situation that involves a drunk retard with low time-orientation and a violent criminal history to get him off private property, and any interaction between the police and poor blacks for the foreseeable future is likely going to end in someone’s property getting torched in reprisal, then what’s the point? Ending qualified immunity isn’t going to fix this. Ending the drug war isn’t going to fix this. Eliminating police entirely isn’t going to fix this.

          This is a case of complete social rot that isn’t just going to go away with a few “reforms,” not when you have a corporate and mass media-backed activist group, with direct ties to one of the two major political parties, essentially running the show and excusing any and all destruction as “the voice of the streets,” disingenuously claiming that the protests are peaceful, and whose foot soldiers are actively trying to get people fired and ruin their lives for wrongthink. It’s like Theodore Dalrymple’s observation on communism writ large.

          If the Dems don’t start tard-wrangling their extremist wing here soon, it won’t be just a few blue cities getting torched. Some of these low-impulse-control cretins may get it in their heads that they need to start taking their little crusade into the suburbs and possibly even the rural areas to “extract justice,” and when that happens, it’s not going to be the cops shooting up people, it’s going to be private citizens. Once that happens, all bets are off.

          1. Yet another post that should be tacked to the top of the thread.

            If Reason did that sort of thing.

            I’d say that there’s still likely to be enough police to come down on the heads of the first suburbanites to defend their property or bodily integrity. Otherwise, I agree with pretty much everything you wrote.

          2. Haha. “Tard wrangling”. Nice.

            1. “If the Dems don’t start tard-wrangling their extremist wing…”

              Sorry, but at this point, it’s tards all the way down in that party.

          3. Philly’s already got gangs of locals showing up to statues of christopher columbus armed with bats, hatchets, and guns, and assaulting people they think are left wing. Of course, the media’s trying to say they’re “right wing extremists”, they aren’t, it’s Philly and they’re a bunch of blue collar regular dudes who aren’t invested in politics and don’t appreciate people coming to their neighborhood and starting shit.

          4. I’d like to see said low-impulse-control cretins try to take their little show to Kennesaw, where every household by city ordinance has to own a gun.

        3. He was driving a rental car so the plates wouldn’t have told the cops anything….

          Are you sure about the criminal history of Mr Brooks..?
          I’ve read a couple of references to him being a bad guy, but those were on comment boards…..I haven’t seen any real proof….
          (have you?)

          1. Just go to the Clayton County, GA court case inquiry page. You put his name in and a whole host of offenses come up.

        4. Was it his car, DJK? Not that a lengthy criminal history surprises me from this guy.

        5. There’s about a 40 minute video of the lead up to the arrest where they are incredibly amiable to Brooks. It seems they were genuinely concerned for Brooks well being and I don’t say that on behalf of police lightly. I didn’t notice an officer go to run his criminal record but I may have glossed over that in about 40 minutes of boring cop interaction that seemed more like a welfare check than an adversarial arrest. Either way, Brooks was no saint. Maybe the cops knew he had a history of violent crime. Maybe any of those details stop mattering the moment a guy takes something off a cops belt. There’s a lot of ways this situation might’ve resolved differently but I’m having a hard time identifying where the cops erred.

          1. They also gave him medical assistance after calling the ambulance, that’s not SOP. Cops don’t have to do diddly squat, and a lot won’t because they’ve been trained to be overly cautious about blood-borne diseases. Everything about this says the cops were just trying to do their job and didn’t want to hurt anyone.

    2. The police would probably considered justified in thinking that Brooks constituted a danger both to themselves and others.

      That’s . . . not how that works.

    3. That’s stacking too many inferences. The threat to self and others must be immediate and direct. If he actually ran at a specific person and pointed the taser at him/her, that would be an actionable threat. The mere possibility that he might at some point in the future, however, is not.

      1. He did point the taser, and fire it, at the cops. That he was unsuccessful doesn’t mean he didn’t do it.

        1. He did, indeed. And he was a threat at that point. Once he turned and fled, his status as a threat changed.

          Implication: If an assailant is shot “in the back” right as he is turning to flee, a jury might consider that reasonable given human reaction times. The further you let him run away before shooting, the less reasonable that decision becomes.

          However back to the original point (which was rebutting Alan Vanneman’s hypothetical), the theoretical possibility that the assailant might at some point in the future seek out a new victim has no bearing on the assessment of him as an immediate threat.

          1. You didn’t watch the video before posting, did you?

            After punching the officer and escaping with the taser, he flees on foot. The other officer fires a taser and misses or it is ineffective.

            Then Brooks runs about 15-20 feet, turns while running and aims the taser at the pursuing officer. He pulls the trigger (it lights up). This is the moment when the officer aims and fires. Brooks turns and continues running after pointing the taser at his pursuer. This whole pointing and shooting thing takes 1-2 seconds.

            There is no long pause, no assessment of other threats. He points the weapon at the officer behind him as he is running away. The officer aims and fires.

            The frame at the top of this page is from maybe 1/4 second after he aims at the officer and is turning back to the front. His arm is still trailing a bit, but is returning to running motion.

            1. Don’t care because the original question was a hypothetical generalization, not an assessment based on the details of this specific situation. The generalization was incorrect.

    4. Tasers are one shot weapon.
      Its also possible that someone you see walking down the street is about to commit a murder.
      Theoretically, Brooks could have straightened out his life and gone to med school and cured cancer.
      Bottom line, a lot of “what ifs” none of which work up to a death sentence (even if I agreed your ‘possibility’)
      Bottom line, thanks to police intervention, a “sleeping in car” was turned into a homicide. Could it have gone differently? Sure, but it didn’t.

      1. Depends on the model. We don’t know which model taser was used.

      2. Many police tasers are 2 shot weapons and most have a stun gun feature once out of prongs.

        1. I’ve seen it reported that the other officer had attempted to fire his taser twice, so it’s reasonable to assume that the stolen taser was also a 2-shot.

  3. I feel we did this thread earlier.

    1. Yeah, but did we do it with a screengrab taken from a moment entirely designed to make it appear that the officer simply shot someone in the back as they were running away, rather than from a half second earlier when he was pointing the weapon directly at the officer?

      Yeah, didn’t think so!

      That makes this one better!

      1. Neither one of those scenarios would be what happened.

        It has not been clearly established that he pointed the weapon directly at the officer. At least some reports say that he aimed poorly (intentional or not), not anywhere near “directly” at the officer.

        Also, I believe it is undisputed that the officer shot Brooks after Brooks had used the Taser.

        So, the screen grab, if that’s all one goes by, would be misleading. But, so is the description you just gave of what happened.

        1. “I have bad aim” is not a great defense for attempting to shoot someone.

          He attacked the police. Despite his imperfect aim, he fired a taser at one.

          Two violent felonies. A violent felon is a threat to the public and should be stopped by police.

          1. Cyto: “ he was pointing the weapon directly at the officer” <- I was commenting only on this.

            1. And the only reason I commented on it was that he was complaining that the screen grab was an intentional effort to mislead about what actually happened, then, in then very same comment, he uses wording that misleads about what actually happened.

              1. This is not true.

                The screengrab is from a few frames after he is pointing the weapon. The only reason to use that instead of the salient one is because you want to mislead people by focusing on things like “shot in the back”. You can quite clearly see exactly what happened in the video.

                1. The only reason?

                  Maybe a simpler reason is that that’s what Sullum found when he did an image search. But you just magically know it was some sinister plot on Sullum’s part to mislead.

                  And, then, after you threw that baseless accusation around, you go and commit your own misrepresentation.

                  1. But you just magically know it was some sinister plot on Sullum’s part to mislead.

                    Sullum is using a NYT graphic that he knows is more-than-likely misleading. He has a history of this — had to be hectored by commenters to quit using Trayvon’s childhood pictures for example.

                    1. He knows this? You know that he knows this how?

                    2. If Sullum is trying to pull some kind of fast one with the photo why did he accompany the photo with an article that gives accurate details of the entire timeline? Maybe just possible you are actively looking for a bogeyman?

        2. Anyone who says he did not point the weapon at the officer is either an idiot or a liar.

          Watch the video. You do not need a report. There is no honest dispute on this matter.

          He is running away. Officer is maybe 2 steps behind him.

          He turns and raises the weapon parallel to the ground and aims directly behind himself at the officer who is pursuing. His entire arm is extended directly behind him. It is not a motion from running. It is not some other gesture. It is not in any way ambiguous.

          If someone told you “he didn’t aim it” or “he didn’t point it near the officer” they are not worthy of your attention. Plus, you don’t need to take their word for it… or mine. Look at the video from Wendy’s security camera. It has a clear view of the shooting. There’s no “seems to show” about it. It is crystal clear.

          1. How come you are now dropping the word, “directly”?

            1. “aims directly behind himself at the officer”

              1. I can’t read. You are right.

                1. You don’t have to read. Just watch the video. It is not ambiguous.

                  Nobody has to like that this guy is dead. But pretending that he was shot for sleeping while black is not just wrong, it is fomenting racial hatred where none exists.

                  All of this careful language around avoiding saying directly: “he pointed the taser at the officer” is there for a reason. There is a large contingent that desperately wants this to be “because racism”. They need that.

                  And people of reason should not play into that attempt. It can only lead to a worse world with more hatred and more violence. Pretending that there is some controversy over whether he pointed a taser at the officer is directly playing into this attempt.

        3. 1. Is it reasonable to tell a police officer (or anyone) that you can’t shoot someone who is pointing a weapon in your general direction unless they are aiming it accurately?

          2. Is the taser a single shot weapon?

          1. There are 2 shots per cartridge taser weapons.

            I believe those cops had those, “stop or we’ll shoot you again”.

            Now that might mean the perp stole a taser that had one shot already used. Or maybe he got a fresh one.

            I would suppose that its general police policy in the US to stop violent felons with potentially lethal force, if necessary. “Stop, or I’ll shoot.”

            It’s their job to protect society from violent criminals. Running fast shouldn’t be a license to a never ending crime spree.

            1. Police have not been allowed to shoot a fleeing felon for many a decade now. Otherwise, good post.

    2. “Keeping it real” doesn’t work out for a lot of black men.

    3. I feel we did this thread earlier.

      Sadly so, it does keep replaying itself.
      If BLM could acknowledge that there are situations where a black life is on the wrong side of the law, then it would have some credibility. But BLM is just as much unwilling to conceded bad blacks, as police unions are unwilling to concede bad cops.

      If BLM insists upon an exclusive choice between black lives or cops, then cops are looking pretty good right now. BLM needs to concede, just as police unions, that some of their members are in need of being thrown under the bus as it were.

      1. Yes, but who cares what BLM says?

        So what if BLM is completely full of shit, from their heads to their toes. It’s a well-known problem, been talked about among libertarians for years, that policing and criminal justice reform is needed, as well as an end to the drug war.

      2. I’ve heard BLM activists still claim that Michael Brown was just a “gentle giant” and posed no realistic threat to Officer Darren Wilson.

        The fact that all credible evidence points to quite an opposite conclusion doesn’t seem to bother them at all.

        BLM leaders should come out and say something like:

        Upon review, it is clear that Michael Brown was a threat to the officer and his shooting was reasonable. However that one case of proper police action does not mean that Blacks are always treated properly by the police. We apologize for leaders in our movement having slandered Officer Darren Wilson before they knew the facts. We will demand that those speaking for the movement be more careful in the future and reserve judgement until sufficient facts are available to draw a rational conclusion.

        I refuse to give any BLM claims much credence or attention until the movement makes some sort of statement like that.

  4. Kalfani N. Turè, an assistant professor of criminal justice at Quinnipiac University

    WTF are you quoting an “urban ethnographer” as if he has any particular expertise or experience?

    1. I’m sure he knows the best restaurants in China Town and Little Arabia.

    2. Wasn’t he a cop for four years or so, before growing a brain and bailing to academia?

  5. Even in the latter case, a state jury deadlocked on the question of whether Officer Michael Slager’s use of deadly force was justified, although he subsequently pleaded guilty to a federal civil rights charge and received a 20-year prison sentence.

    How is this not double jeopardy? Different crimes but one incident. And how did the jury not find him guilty? Overcharged?

      1. OK. The Constitution is being interpreted to allow double jeopardy at its whim. So many crimes have civil rights aspects, this essentially guts 5A.

  6. The answer to the question in the headline is, as usual, “No.”

    The shooting was “Completely justifiable but still tragic.”

    1. Yeah, I think it was unfair to fire the police officer so quickly. The deeper issues that need to be considered are why police officers don’t see it is an option to de-esclate situations, and why escalation over misdemeanors seems to be so prevalent with dealing with black people.

      1. I realize that the videos I’ve seen aren’t complete evidence, but the fight appeared to break out pretty darn fast. Brooks seemed compliant until the cops started to cuff him then he suddenly started violently fighting. I’m not sure what de-escalation could have worked at that point.

        1. The de-escalation they might have considered is letting him run away when he started running away.

          I don’t want to come across as knowing better than the officers, but one factor to consider is that they appear to be shooting at each other right next to a line of cars that are in the drive-thru. If the officers’ job is to keep people safe, it might not be the best place to be shooting at someone, and possibly have them shooting back.

          1. I agree that would have been better than shooting. I think I would have still pursued him on foot, though, and called for help to corral him.

            1. Brooks had a lengthy criminal history that included multiple violent offenses. So you have an armed offender with a history of violence; not a good combo. It’s not at all hard to imagine the cops (who almost certainly would have pulled up his criminal background before approaching the vehicle) taking that into account when assessing the threat he posed to them and others. The cop who fired had also just had his bell rung by having his head smashed into the concrete. That may have played into the decision. Who knows. Certainly a lot of reasons the cops could point to for this being a justified shooting.

              1. Where did you see reporting on Brooks’ criminal record? I can’t find anything like that.

                1. “Tulpa Disciple
                  June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
                  It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

                  You are Tulpa Disciple/RabbiHarveyWeinstein and you said that.

                  Got ya

                  1. Stop this pogrom! I am NOT Tulpa

                2. Me neither…..

                3. I found one article (on a clearly far right news site) that claims to be Brooks’ record includes family and child abuse charges.

          2. Brook’s family’s attorney, in the New York Post (not sure how credible a source this is) is saying that one of the shots hit a car with kids in it.

          3. The police should prevent violent felons from roaming the streets.

      2. Ever since the Floyd incident, it’s your responsibility as a black man who thinks he may have future contact with police, to have a game plan for escape in the event you’re pulled over. The cops will then have a no win situation on their hands and – even though you may lose your life – you come out the good guy.

        How the tides have turned.

        1. BLM never said “ONLY Black Lives Matter” that’s just the straw man argument you like to use.
          Even though the basis of your argument is incorrect, wouldn’t you agree that based on history, the first move should be by the police?
          Can you reform the police department so they warriors or do you need to de-fund and start over?

          1. BLM screams like a big pussy when anyone uses ‘All Lives Matter’.

            Not a straw man, fucko.

        2. If you are a black male, regardless of whether you have a criminal record or are squeaky clean middle class, you already have a game plan for what to do when interacting with the police. You’ve had one since you were a teenager. It’s nothing new for you since the Floyd incident.

          Your plan may be to keep your hands clearly visible and be super polite, or it may be to fight and run, but you have a plan.

          1. If you are a black male, regardless of whether you have a criminal record or are squeaky clean middle class, you already have a game plan for what to do when interacting with the police.

            If you’re a grown-ass man, regardless of what your skin color is, you have a game plan for what to do when interacting with the police.

            1. This is exactly what black people are trying to get across to others. It’s not the same.

              1. Holy shit LOL

              2. Yeah, it is.

    2. Yes.

      This is a much better description.

      It wasn’t just “barely legal” or driven through some legal loophole.

      In police shootings that we get all fired up about around here, there is usually a double standard at play where police get away with something that you’d never get away with in a million years. This is not one of those cases.

      Given the same circumstances in a tussle with some drunk guy who beat you up and took your taser, then fired it at you, you’d almost assuredly get a “self defense” pass when you fired your gun at him as he pointed it at you. Now, granted this would be an extraordinary set of facts for anyone who isn’t police, but the fact remains. If you were the security guard at a swanky jewelry store and that series of events occurred, you’d be standing on fairly solid ground.

      Pretending that this is some gross violation of this guy’s rights is stupid and counterproductive. You can acknowledge that it was tragic and senseless that he died like that without proclaiming this some poster child for police brutality. It just plain isn’t that at all.

      Unless your objective is to lose a big chunk of the country from the “fix the police” momentum that we have, pushing this case is a stone cold loser.

      1. The real tragedy is the fact that an innocent Wendy’s restaurant was burned down. #RIPWendys

        1. The real tragedy is this dude was supposed to be at his daughter’s birthday party, not drunk in the parking lot. But, he probably got her the best present she could ask for – fame and fortune for him being “martyred” by cops, and of course, not having to cry every other birthday moving forward because his drunk ass was too irresponsible.

          1. Can you blame him? #BlackWivesBlather

          2. He was on parole (because corona, not good behavior) for child endangerment and physical neglect.

            1. If that is true then CNN and NBC are the journalist version of criminally negligent. They spent the last 3 days running stories about the model father, using pictures of him with kids and stuffed animals and only telling me that he was a great dad. They didn’t even honestly report about passing out in the drive through – at least in the stories I saw. They implied strongly that he had simply pulled over to sleep it off. This is not compatible with the video which clearly shows the officer approach him, passed out in the driver’s seat of his car, sitting in the drive through line.

              1. I’ve got a link somewhere on the page to a web site. I think they give instructions for going directly to the police web site to confirm for yourself.

                I had heard the child abuse allegation somewhere else as well.

      2. “In police shootings that we get all fired up about around here, there is usually a double standard at play where police get away with something that you’d never get away with in a million years. This is not one of those cases.”

        Honestly, I wouldn’t be so quick to say that. Mind you, I also think it depends on the jurisdiction you live in, but the “Duty to retreat” standard applied in some states, including the one I live in (MD), makes me think I would be charged.

        1. The chasing after him bit makes it more complicated, as you would have to have a reason to be chasing him. So maybe “armed guard” scenario with robbery to replace DUI?

          But the actual moment is “dude points weapon at me and I have a gun in my hand”.

          But you are definitely right that the chasing bit would complicate an otherwise simple case.

          1. It’s not a double standard to judge cops by different standards because they have different *responsibilities*.

            It’s their *responsibility* to protect the public from violent criminals. That’s the job. The perp committed multiple felonies in their presence on them. There’s no mystery here.

            I suppose some countries have chosen as policy to refuse to use potentially lethal force against fleeing violent felons, but I doubt that is the policy all but a tiny loony enclaves in the US.

      3. To be fair though, I don’t think a lawyer would give you good odds with these facts. The guy shot at you with a taser, and was in the process of running away, at which point you shot him twice in the back.

        A prosecutor could easily make the argument that all you had to do was stop chasing, and the taser would have been no threat to you. Further, when it was known that you had another gun toting guy on your side, I would not be happy with my chances.

        In a way, this is pretty similar to the shooting in Georgia where the two guys hunted down a black guy they suspected of theft, who then tried to grab at their guns, and who they then shot. The expectation all along this point for the civilians was that they should have not been chasing this guy, forcing an altercation, etc. But for the cops it is different, right or wrong.

        1. They’ve a duty to pursue, Overt. Which is a giant difference between the cops and the rest of us.

          I really don’t understand the attempts here by the commentariat to make what this cop did wrong, or to imply that Brooks was in any way justified in his conduct.

          Again, that Brooks fired the taser does not change the fact that Officer Rolfe perceived that Brooks still was in possession of a deadly weapon, and was intending to use it on the cops. Use of deadly force does not become instantly unjustified if an assailant with a weapon turns to run. And that’s if Rolfe thought that Brooks only took the taser, and not the other officer’s service weapon.

          (It can be awfully damned close though, if the defendant in the courtroom is unpopular. See, e.g., Michael Drejka’s shooting of Markeis McGlockton.)

          1. “I really don’t understand the attempts here by the commentariat to make what this cop did wrong, or to imply that Brooks was in any way justified in his conduct.”

            Because people are nuts, ACAB, White Guilt, and Whitey is the Devil.

            We *could* require cops to capture violent felons w/o the use of weapons. We may as well say that we don’t want violent felons to be captured.

        2. “Any crime is ok if you can run away”

          Good call

      4. Well, there is some reporting that the cop also shot a car with kids inside it. So, the place and time where the cop chose to engage in a shootout should be taken into consideration.

    3. I’ve been trying to chase down the quote in the headline, which is everywhere now.

      AFAICT some blacktavist type works as a cop for a short while as part of his sociology research. Despite Manhattan being chock-a-block with cops turned prosecutors, cops turned defense attorneys, cops turned professors (John Jay), a NYT reporter gets a quote from some blacktavist at a college you’ve only ever heard of because they do a poll.

      Now with imprimatur of the NYT all the lazy asshole clickbait writers don’t have to pick up a phone to get their single quote to lead off the articles. It’s officially a “Lawful but Awful” shooting … according to a guy who was a cop for a month in suburban Atlanta.

      1. A month? I thought it was at least for a few years? So he didn’t even make it out of his probationary period?

        1. Kinda made up the month bit. Practicing journalisming I guess.

          The only thing I saw with any specificity was his Yale bio:

          In between undergraduate and graduate school, he engaged in an informal participatory project of law enforcement agencies at the municipal, county and state level believing that as an aspiring ethnographer of crime and place, he could offer a more informed perspective and pedagogy on the American criminal justice system and racialize communities. As a result of his folk ethnographic undertaking, he was certified in basic law enforcement and sheriff deputy through a Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training academy (Fulton County). He enjoyed a short tenure as a practicing police officer and jailer and with this professional experience …

  7. “Brooks was on foot, posing no threat to the general public, . . . ”

    Other than being a drunk with a deadly weapon?
    How many lawsuits would get filed if he had been let go and tased an elderly person during his flight, and that person died from the resulting fall?
    What if he had stolen a car and done a deadly drunken hit and run?
    He was in fact a threat to the general public.

    1. Lots of lawsuits might be filed but they’d probably go nowhere. The police are generally immune from civil suits for failing to protect. See the Supreme Court case Gonzales v. Town of Castle Rock. Georgia might have some state constitutional provision or law that provides otherwise but that’s pretty rare.

    2. Other than being a violent felon who had been convicted of abusing his children, just driven drunk, and committed two more violent felonies, this time against police.

  8. Isn’t that the officers taser in his hand?

    Maybe he should have stolen the gun while resisting.

    1. It is the kind of thing niggers like that do.

      1. Nice use of 0x0049 to spoof my handle. You can have the handle. Hail, Tulpa!

        1. Take your meds bigot.

        2. Look, I can do it, too!

      2. It would seem so.

      3. I think they prefer the term “coloreds”.

        1. Say the ‘S’ word. You know you want to …

          1. Bro he’s obviously “Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER” so the “S word” is weak tea for him.

            1. But it’s funny for me.

              1. I don’t even know what the S word is. Sidd?

                1. “Tulpa Disciple
                  June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
                  It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

                  You are Tulpa Disciple/RabbiHarveyWeinstein and you said that.

                  Got ya

                    1. “Tulpa Disciple
                      June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
                      It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

                      Right, you are Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER and you said that.

                      Got ya.

            1. “Tulpa Disciple
              June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
              It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

              Why arecyou hiding now bitch? You are Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER and you said that.

              Got ya.

          2. Oy vey! You mean “schwartzes”?

            1. “Tulpa Disciple
              June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
              It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

              Why are you hiding now bitch? You are Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER and you said that.

              Got ya.

            2. Was that a hard Z?!

              1. It is a term of empowerment if you’re Mizrahi.

        2. My grandma thinks she is politically correct by calling them negroes and the young black ladies are called negresses.

          For those wondering, no, she’s not amused when someone calls their baby a niglet.

    2. Get a life you fucking retards.

  9. I’ve seen it justified this way;

    Once the suspect had the taser and pointed it at the officer, the officer was in lethal danger because, if he had been hit by the taser, that would have left him incapacitated and he didn’t know if the suspect would continue fleeing or turn around and attack him.

    But that ignores two points.

    1. There was another officer there.

    2. If the taser was considered sufficient to incapacitate the officer – why was it not considered sufficient to incapacitate the suspect? Why did they not use the taser on the suspect when he struggled?

    That, of course, ignores that they *did* use the taser on the suspect – and it was ineffective.

    Meaning that it would have been just as ineffective at incapacitating the cop. That and the second cop on scene would, to me, utterly destroy the ‘imminent danger’ aspect of a defensive shooting. There was no imminent danger.

    Now, personally, I don’t think the cop shot with malice. I think it was a bad reaction because the cop didn’t stop to think. He’s hopped up on adrenaline, pissed at the dude for the fight, dude runs off, cop draws – because that’s what they’re trained to do, dude points something at him, cop shoots without thinking.

    1. 2. If the taser was considered sufficient to incapacitate the officer – why was it not considered sufficient to incapacitate the suspect? Why did they not use the taser on the suspect when he struggled?

      That, of course, ignores that they *did* use the taser on the suspect – and it was ineffective.

      Meaning that it would have been just as ineffective at incapacitating the cop. That and the second cop on scene would, to me, utterly destroy the ‘imminent danger’ aspect of a defensive shooting. There was no imminent danger.

      Suddenly I understand what “libertarianism is astrology for men” means.

      1. >Meaning that it would have been just as ineffective
        What is chance? How many people die from lightning? How many people survive lightning strikes?

    2. Maybe. Tasers are effective in some cases and not in others. Some heavy clothing is very difficult for the bolt to penetrate. And of course firing and missing will be completely ineffective. We don’t know what caused the Taser not to work on Brooks; it could have been his clothing or a simple miss. No reason to believe that it would or would not have been effective against the cop.

      1. No reason to believe that it would or would not have been effective against the cop.

        That’s my point though. We already saw it used in this encounter. But people are saying its fine and proper that it was used on the suspect to force compliance (which it failed to do) but it not ok to use on the cop because of a ‘high chance of sever injury or death’.

        Same standard. If its ok to force compliance with a taser, then a taser is not a lethal threat. If it is a lethal threat then they screwed up by using it to force compliance long before it got to the shooting stage.

        1. So they should just let him go?

          “Fight the cops and you’re in the clear!”

    3. 1. There was another officer there.

      Yes..who could have shot the perp had he attempted to harm the incapacitated officer or steal his duty weapon. Or are you saying that the other officer could have instead engaged in a wrestling match with the perp at that point? How exactly does the presence of the other officer matter here, other than to shift the responsibility of stopping the perp to someone else?

      2. If the taser was considered sufficient to incapacitate the officer – why was it not considered sufficient to incapacitate the suspect? Why did they not use the taser on the suspect when he struggled?

      Did it ever occur to you to read the piece you’re commenting on before commenting?

      “Then he stands up and punches Rolfe, who fires his Taser at Brooks.”

      1. The justification for shooting the suspect was that, had he successfully used the taser, the officer could have been incapacitated and then would be easy prey for the suspect had he turned around and attacked.

        So yes, the other officer could have shot the suspect if he had done so. Or could have engaged in that wrestling match. Or shot his taser at him. Or any number of things.

        But the presence of the other officer negates the ‘oh, he might possibly have been a danger’ justification for shooting him.

      2. Did it ever occur to you to read the piece you’re commenting on before commenting?

        “Then he stands up and punches Rolfe, who fires his Taser at Brooks.”

        Did it ever occur to you that Reason Magazine is not the only place this is being reported on and that other places have covered the story with different details being uncovered?

        Such as the 50 minutes of bodycam footage covering the incident. Where, when wrestling with the suspect, one of the cops tasers him. This happens before the suspect grabs the one cop’s taser and breaks away.

    4. Pretty much once you find yourself holding the cop’s weapon, I’m good with you getting shot by the cops.

      What’s the cop supposed to do otherwise, just let the guy just trot off with a new toy taser? Nope. At that point anything short of throwing yourself on the ground spread eagle with the gun tossed well away is going to get a well earned shooting.

    5. Point 1, Rolfe did not know if the other officer got fucked up enough by Brooks, such that he couldn’t meaningfully resist an attempt by Brooks to take a Tased Rolfe’s gun. Michael Brown came back for seconds after trying to grab Darren Wilson’s pistol the first time, after all.

      Point 2. How intoxicated, and on what, was Brooks? I’ve heard .10% for his BAC, which I wouldn’t think would be enough for sleepy time in the drive through. .10 + something like PCP or Codeine or you-name-it, might. Plus might provide some ability to weather a bad taser hit.

      Again. They are trained. Everywhere in the US. That if their Taser gets taken from them, by someone threatening to use it (nevermind actually shoot it at them), that it is sufficient apprehension of sudden serious bodily injury to warrant deadly force to stop it. Every cop gets this training.

      Yeah, the training probably presupposes the officer is alone, and in close contact with the suspect. I.e., the ballpark 5 seconds of immobility from a good taser strike on a sober person is enough for the taser wielding bad guy to advance on the officer and kill them.

      1. Every cop gets this training.

        That’s not an excuse.

  10. That and the second cop on scene would, to me, utterly destroy the ‘imminent danger’ aspect of a defensive shooting.

    That’s the part that makes me question the necessity to shoot Brooks. If Brooks had successfully tasered the cop I don’t see how he could have got to the cop and done anything else before the second cop was on him.

    1. We all have the benefit of being able to watch a video where it is clear that Brooks is pointing a taser at them. They might not have had such a clear view. Of course, on the other hand, they could lie about it after the fact even if they had a clear view.

      The truth suffers always.

      1. But you just said ““The n***** got what was coming to him”

        I mean I troll a lot but fuck man that’s fucking gross.

        1. Maybe they should stop nagging people?

          1. Gave up on “TULPA FOLLOWER” already I see, you gross fucking bigot.

            1. It is someone else! I am but a simple rabbi who enjoys browsing libertarian forums.

              1. “Tulpa Disciple
                June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
                It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

                AHAHAHAHAHA I got you hiding now bitch! You are Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER and you said that.

                Got ya.

          2. I think you meant to say “niggling.” It’s considered niggardly to be niggling.

  11. People defending the shooting of a Black Man by the police. I see, I see.

    1. Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER even went so far as to say “The n***** got what was coming to him”

      I mean I troll a lot but fuck man that’s fucking gross.

    2. People defending the shooting of a violent criminal who struggled with police when they tried to arrest him for drunk driving and stole one of their weapons, which he then aimed and fired at one of them.

      Fixed it for you.

  12. shot in the back. Pat Garrett on line 2, says “totes lawful”

  13. Brooks was on foot, posing no threat to the general public, and running away, posing no threat to the officers as long as they let him do so.

    On foot, after brawling with 2 cops, stealing and firing a taser at one of them. No threat to the public, my ass.

    And why has nobody brought up Tennessee v Garner?

    “Under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, a police officer may use deadly force to prevent the escape of a fleeing suspect only if the officer has a good-faith belief that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.”

    1. Probably because this case doesn’t even require going there.

      Dude pointed taser and pulled trigger. Training says “fire” the moment the weapon is raised. No further analysis needed.

      This one is tragic, but it isn’t close. There’s no “furtive movement” angle to this. There’s no “holding a cell phone or wallet”, no “reaching for my registration”… none of the usual excuses for firing that we hold in contempt.

      Dude pointed a taser that he had just stolen from a police officer via use of violence. Every police officer would have done the same thing at that instant. Maybe he only pulls the trigger 80% of the time, and maybe another guy only 70%… but on balance every officer would pull the trigger most times through this scenario. It is just way too close to their training scenarios – and this one would definitely be a “shoot” in a training scenario.

      1. So they need to be retrained. End of story,

        1. You are going to have a hard time winning the “we should train police not to shoot people who point tasers at them after resisting arrest and fighting and winning”

          A better place to plant that flag would be in the “Let’s not have traffic police carrying firearms” corner. That one might be a winner. “Stand there like a putz while some criminal tases you, takes your weapon and murders you and your partner” is not going to win too many converts, and I’ll guarantee that it won’t win any converts on the police force.

          1. It’s amazing that we’ve seemed to reach “it’s wrong for cops to do anything if a suspect is non-compliant” territory, but here we are

            1. Maybe cops could be equipped with lassoes instead of guns!

              1. I reckon them things are good for tard wrangling, pardner!

                Nardner? Anyway……

            2. You hit upon the conundrum that I see brewing. There is a burgeoning new narrative that seems to imply that any force used by a police officer is wrong. I get that we want a nice and cozy, safe little world. But that’s not where we live, and when people committing crimes fight back against being arrested, violence is going to be the end result. It is ludicrous to believe either: A) that there is somehow a technique or strategy that can be trained into officers whereby all arrests would be completely cooperative; or B) that police should just let those who resist arrest go.

              1. The de facto response is going to be, ‘b’, Squirrel.

                It’ll be worse than that, as cops aren’t going to bother making arrests if it involves getting out of their car. People will be amazed at the things these new police won’t be able to see.

  14. bet the Wendy’s owner wishes they let him walk to Sis’.

    1. I bet the officers both wish they had let him walk. I sincerely doubt that they are the least bit pleased with how events played out.

      I bet Brooks would have liked to have had several of his choices back as well. The difference being, his choices were the ones that were unlawful and not only lead to his own death, but also could have just as easily lead to the death or dismemberment of someone else.

      1. oh yeah. multiple universes from the one situation.

      2. Who cares about civilians? Gotta keep that 7 figure pension safe!

        1. Bro, why are you hiding? We know it’s you “Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER” you gross fucking bigot.

            1. “Tulpa Disciple
              June.15.2020 at 4:33 pm
              It is the kind of thing niggers like that do”

              AHAHAHAHAHA I got you hiding now bitch! You are Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER and you said that.

              Got ya.

  15. I have talked with a few friends in LEO about this very aspect – the “let him walk home” idea.

    They all said that they have done that in the past. They all say that it is 100% a mistake. It is a sure fire way to get yourself in a world of trouble.

    One guy let some dude call his wife to come get him. She drove him back around to pick up the car right after the officer left. And promptly wrecked it. The guy had the balls to file a complaint.

    They all agreed that more often than not, the people you cut a break are the ones who end up filing complaints.

    Another guy agreed and said he let a guy walk home who “lives just a couple of blocks down that way”. Dude also came back for his car. Cop got in a pile of trouble because people at the “lounge” where he was drinking called 911 because drunk dude was trying to drive off in his car.

    Everyone agreed that it is a big risk to skip procedures and cut someone a break.

    They all also agreed that this case was remarkable because the DUI suspect never showed any signs that he was going to resist. They all agreed that you can usually tell the guys who are going to end up resisting right away.

    Not one of them agreed with how Floyd was restrained. Not even a little bit. And not one of them thinks that there is any question at all that this Brooks shooting will be properly adjudicated as a good shoot.

    I’ve been at this issue a long time. Probably 25 or 30 years, with this as one of my primary issues for at least 13 years. I have never had police officers all agree that a situation was all bad on the police officer. They defended the guys in the Daniel Shaver shooting. They didn’t think the Kelly Thomas case was as cut and dried as I claimed. They all had the classic police “totality of circumstances” equivocations and the second-by-second context.

    Not for Floyd. They all were unanimously against that one. Which means we have a moment. There is universal agreement.

    And we are going to piss it away on a case where there’s not a chance in hell of getting the police on board. You start claiming that they have to be clairvoyant during the .7 seconds that someone is aiming a weapon at them and read all possible outcomes and probabilities before firing their weapon and you are going to lose this opportunity.

    1. More than a complaint, letting Brooks walk home seems like an easy path to a lawsuit, too. What if he stumbles into traffic and gets killed by a car? Police had the opportunity to stop that, so they’ll get sued by the family. Or he comes back for the car, wrecks it and kills someone else. Lawsuit against the police on behalf of both Brooks and the victims. Same could happen even if they put him in a taxi or drop them off at the house themselves, unless they can somehow hand off responsibility to the sister. But, would she say later that she wasn’t properly capable of keeping him home until he was safe to go out?

      1. How does qualified immunity not protect the police in that kind of suite? By letting him walk home, which of his constitutional rights were violated?

    2. You start claiming that they have to be clairvoyant during the .7 seconds that someone is aiming a weapon at them and read all possible outcomes and probabilities before firing their weapon and you are going to lose this opportunity.

      Seems like that can cut both ways. We’ve seen cases of people in handcuffs being beaten and even shot. Can we expect Brooks to see those restraints come out suddenly and know for a fact in those few seconds that he’s not going to get jacked up by a law enforcement officer having a bad day and needing a dog to kick? I know that’s silly but, hey, it’s a split second decision. He had to think on his feet, etc.

      Many of the other problems your LEO friends bring up seem to be self-created, systemic problems. If we can protect officers for making a decision to shoot someone in the back, then I think an alternative, sanctioned procedure for maybe dealing with possible DUI cases could be established that provided some shield for officers making that judgment call to let a guy walk home.

      1. In this case you have an individual who is both intoxicated and has demonstrated the willingness (and ability) to engage in violent behavior…which he chose to engage in prior to being given any reason to believe that the officers were going to preemptively harm him.

        Sorry, but making a decision based on a possibility hypothesized from the behavior of people not even present is not remotely comparable to making a decision based on the behavior being currently engaged in by the individual you’re actually dealing with right now.

        Many of the other problems your LEO friends bring up seem to be self-created, systemic problems.

        You mean, like the existence of drunk-driving assholes with histories of violent felonies who think it’s a good idea to fight with cops, take their weapons and fire them at said cops?

        1. How does Brooks know that the guy with the cuffs isn’t one of those prone to prisoner abuse? He didn’t become violent until threatened with restraints. (Remember, I’m making this point to refute the “split second decision” defense, which seems to be absolute when it’s in favor of law enforcement.)

          And look at the screenshot of the moment he was shot. He was several feet away, had missed with the nonlethal compliance device and was running in the opposite direction. Looks like typical cop panic.

          1. Your argument, Fist, is an argument that could conceivably be applied to anyone getting arrested. Are we going to take your argument into account, and have the police stop arresting people?

            It’s even less applicable in Brooks’s case. Brooks had been arrested before. A bunch of times, for some crimes that even Libertarians agree he needed to go to jail for. Brooks had past experience telling him the cops weren’t going to start abusing him as soon as he got the cuffs on. A newbie to getting arrested doesn’t have that experience.

            As Cyto noted, this case is doing a great job of pissing away the firm coalition we had after the Floyd case for enacting meaningful police reform.

            1. Your argument, Fist, is an argument that could conceivably be applied to anyone getting arrested.

              Yes. The near absurdity is the point. “A split second to decide” is either valid for everyone or no one.

      2. Were the people getting the shit kicked out of them talking amicably with the police for over a half hour with the police offering to call medical? Somehow I dont think so.

    3. Cyto…
      “let him walk home”
      The guy was visiting and driving a rental…AND….drunk.
      If you watch the entire field interview you’ll find out that Mr Brooks was 10 miles from where he thought he was…so letting him “walk to his sister’s house” could’ve led to more problems…

      1. Which was precisely their point. It sounds nice in theory… but it is a good way to end your career if you are the cop who does it.

      2. Driving a rental? So many questions. I wonder if he had a license? Long rap sheet apparently, but no serious driving offenses?

        Who rents a car to drive drunk? Someone with an ignition lock on his own car?

    4. Reminds me of a story from my fraternity about 50 years ago.
      Police stop some of the brothers coming back from the bars downtown. Say to them, park the car, and walk the rest of the way home. They did park the car, but the moment the police left, they jumped back in the car.
      Of course the police weren’t complete dummies. They too had circled the block and pulled them over again. This time no more Mr. nice guy.

  16. I am hugely anti-cop, but I don’t understand people who think that cops should just let someone get away because they successfully tried to run. I think it is entirely reasonable for police to assume a suspect is guilty of far more than whatever they initially stopped them for if the suspect it willing to attempt to run, especially when that suspect is willing to attack police officers. Why should they wait to track him down at another point (assuming they even had positive ID at that point), when the suspect could be better armed? I have absolutely no sympathy for someone who’s life was not endangered by the police until he started physically attacking them.

    1. I have plenty of sympathy for him. Dude was hammered and driving – that part is inexcusable because it put other people at risk. But being that he was in fact hammered, I’m sure that his judgement was severely clouded.

      He was doing just fine. And then a switch flipped. It was a fatal mistake, but it was only a couple of seconds.

      That’s a good reminder. It only takes a second. That’s what my dad always used to say every time I got in the car. In this case it was the second where he grabbed the taser. If it had been earlier in the evening, it might have been the second where he plowed into a couple of kids on bicycles and ended their lives because he was drinking and driving. I’d have sympathy for that too. Making an important mistake that you cannot undo is horrible.

      1. I await the beatification ceremony by MSNBC in the following days.

        1. Wait no longer. It happens fast now.

    2. good clean shooting.
      The arresting is going along just fine until the perp spins, grabs the taser, and runs.
      Can’t make a policy of letting people run away with police weapons.

      Want to ‘cancel’ the police? Do it in your neighborhood first. The rest of us will watch that experiment expectantly to see if we want to follow. Not.

  17. Some eloquence and reason from a professor at UC. Much needed during this time of irrational panic.

    http://www.zerohedge.com/political/anonymous-berkeley-professor-shreds-blm-injustice-narrative-damning-stats-and-logic

    Dear profs X, Y, Z

    I am one of your colleagues at the University of California, Berkeley. I have met you both personally but do not know you closely, and am contacting you anonymously, with apologies. I am worried that writing this email publicly might lead to me losing my job, and likely all future jobs in my field.

    In your recent departmental emails you mentioned our pledge to diversity, but I am increasingly alarmed by the absence of diversity of opinion on the topic of the recent protests and our community response to them.

    In the extended links and resources you provided, I could not find a single instance of substantial counter-argument or alternative narrative to explain the under-representation of black individuals in academia or their over-representation in the criminal justice system. The explanation provided in your documentation, to the near exclusion of all others, is univariate: the problems of the black community are caused by whites, or, when whites are not physically present, by the infiltration of white supremacy and white systemic racism into American brains, souls, and institutions.

    Many cogent objections to this thesis have been raised by sober voices, including from within the black community itself, such as Thomas Sowell and Wilfred Reilly. These people are not racists or ‘Uncle Toms’. They are intelligent scholars who reject a narrative that strips black people of agency and systematically externalizes the problems of the black community onto outsiders. Their view is entirely absent from the departmental and UCB-wide communiques.

    The claim that the difficulties that the black community faces are entirely causally explained by exogenous factors in the form of white systemic racism, white supremacy, and other forms of white discrimination remains a problematic hypothesis that should be vigorously challenged by historians. Instead, it is being treated as an axiomatic and actionable truth without serious consideration of its profound flaws, or its worrying implication of total black impotence. This hypothesis is transforming our institution and our culture, without any space for dissent outside of a tightly policed, narrow discourse.

    A counternarrative exists. If you have time, please consider examining some of the documents I attach at the end of this email. Overwhelmingly, the reasoning provided by BLM and allies is either primarily anecdotal (as in the case with the bulk of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ undeniably moving article) or it is transparently motivated. As an example of the latter problem, consider the proportion of black incarcerated Americans. This proportion is often used to characterize the criminal justice system as anti-black. However, if we use the precise same methodology, we would have to conclude that the criminal justice system is even more anti-male than it is anti-black.

    Would we characterize criminal justice as a systemically misandrist conspiracy against innocent American men? I hope you see that this type of reasoning is flawed, and requires a significant suspension of our rational faculties. Black people are not incarcerated at higher rates than their involvement in violent crime would predict. This fact has been demonstrated multiple times across multiple jurisdictions in multiple countries.

    And yet, I see my department uncritically reproducing a narrative that diminishes black agency in favor of a white-centric explanation that appeals to the department’s apparent desire to shoulder the ‘white man’s burden’ and to promote a narrative of white guilt.

    If we claim that the criminal justice system is white-supremacist, why is it that Asian Americans, Indian Americans, and Nigerian Americans are incarcerated at vastly lower rates than white Americans? This is a funny sort of white supremacy. Even Jewish Americans are incarcerated less than gentile whites. I think it’s fair to say that your average white supremacist disapproves of Jews. And yet, these alleged white supremacists incarcerate gentiles at vastly higher rates than Jews. None of this is addressed in your literature. None of this is explained, beyond hand-waving and ad hominems. “Those are racist dogwhistles”. “The model minority myth is white supremacist”. “Only fascists talk about black-on-black crime”, ad nauseam.

    These types of statements do not amount to counterarguments: they are simply arbitrary offensive classifications, intended to silence and oppress discourse. Any serious historian will recognize these for the silencing orthodoxy tactics they are, common to suppressive regimes, doctrines, and religions throughout time and space. They are intended to crush real diversity and permanently exile the culture of robust criticism from our department.

    Increasingly, we are being called upon to comply and subscribe to BLM’s problematic view of history, and the department is being presented as unified on the matter. In particular, ethnic minorities are being aggressively marshaled into a single position. Any apparent unity is surely a function of the fact that dissent could almost certainly lead to expulsion or cancellation for those of us in a precarious position, which is no small number.

    I personally don’t dare speak out against the BLM narrative, and with this barrage of alleged unity being mass-produced by the administration, tenured professoriat, the UC administration, corporate America, and the media, the punishment for dissent is a clear danger at a time of widespread economic vulnerability. I am certain that if my name were attached to this email, I would lose my job and all future jobs, even though I believe in and can justify every word I type.

    The vast majority of violence visited on the black community is committed by black people. There are virtually no marches for these invisible victims, no public silences, no heartfelt letters from the UC regents, deans, and departmental heads. The message is clear: Black lives only matter when whites take them. Black violence is expected and insoluble, while white violence requires explanation and demands solution. Please look into your hearts and see how monstrously bigoted this formulation truly is.

    No discussion is permitted for nonblack victims of black violence, who proportionally outnumber black victims of nonblack violence. This is especially bitter in the Bay Area, where Asian victimization by black assailants has reached epidemic proportions, to the point that the SF police chief has advised Asians to stop hanging good-luck charms on their doors, as this attracts the attention of (overwhelmingly black) home invaders. Home invaders like George Floyd. For this actual, lived, physically experienced reality of violence in the USA, there are no marches, no tearful emails from departmental heads, no support from McDonald’s and Wal-Mart. For the History department, our silence is not a mere abrogation of our duty to shed light on the truth: it is a rejection of it.

    The claim that black intraracial violence is the product of redlining, slavery, and other injustices is a largely historical claim. It is for historians, therefore, to explain why Japanese internment or the massacre of European Jewry hasn’t led to equivalent rates of dysfunction and low SES performance among Japanese and Jewish Americans respectively. Arab Americans have been viciously demonized since 9/11, as have Chinese Americans more recently. However, both groups outperform white Americans on nearly all SES indices – as do Nigerian Americans, who incidentally have black skin. It is for historians to point out and discuss these anomalies. However, no real discussion is possible in the current climate at our department. The explanation is provided to us, disagreement with it is racist, and the job of historians is to further explore additional ways in which the explanation is additionally correct. This is a mockery of the historical profession. […]

    The total alliance of major corporations involved in human exploitation with BLM should be a warning flag to us, and yet this damning evidence goes unnoticed, purposefully ignored, or perversely celebrated. We are the useful idiots of the wealthiest classes, carrying water for Jeff Bezos and other actual, real, modern-day slavers. Starbucks, an organisation using literal black slaves in its coffee plantation suppliers, is in favor of BLM. Sony, an organisation using cobalt mined by yet more literal black slaves, many of whom are children, is in favor of BLM. And so, apparently, are we. The absence of counter-narrative enables this obscenity. Fiat lux, indeed.

    There also exists a large constituency of what can only be called ‘race hustlers’: hucksters of all colors who benefit from stoking the fires of racial conflict to secure administrative jobs, charity management positions, academic jobs and advancement, or personal political entrepreneurship.

    Given the direction our history department appears to be taking far from any commitment to truth, we can regard ourselves as a formative training institution for this brand of snake-oil salespeople. Their activities are corrosive, demolishing any hope at harmonious racial coexistence in our nation and colonizing our political and institutional life. Many of their voices are unironically segregationist.

    MLK would likely be called an Uncle Tom if he spoke on our campus today. We are training leaders who intend, explicitly, to destroy one of the only truly successful ethnically diverse societies in modern history. As the PRC, an ethnonationalist and aggressively racially chauvinist national polity with null immigration and no concept of jus solis increasingly presents itself as the global political alternative to the US, I ask you: Is this wise? Are we really doing the right thing?

    As a final point, our university and department has made multiple statements celebrating and eulogizing George Floyd. Floyd was a multiple felon who once held a pregnant black woman at gunpoint. He broke into her home with a gang of men and pointed a gun at her pregnant stomach. He terrorized the women in his community. He sired and abandoned multiple children, playing no part in their support or upbringing, failing one of the most basic tests of decency for a human being. He was a drug-addict and sometime drug-dealer, a swindler who preyed upon his honest and hard-working neighbors.

    And yet, the regents of UC and the historians of the UCB History department are celebrating this violent criminal, elevating his name to virtual sainthood. A man who hurt women. A man who hurt black women. With the full collaboration of the UCB history department, corporate America, most mainstream media outlets, and some of the wealthiest and most privileged opinion-shaping elites of the USA, he has become a culture hero, buried in a golden casket, his (recognized) family showered with gifts and praise. Americans are being socially pressured into kneeling for this violent, abusive misogynist. A generation of black men are being coerced into identifying with George Floyd, the absolute worst specimen of our race and species. […]

    1. In other news, Berkeley now checking it’s email servers in hopes of identifying the class traitor.

      1. Yeah, hope whoever wrote that posted it from a burner email account via VPN.

        1. If he indeed is a professor at Berkeley, they don’t need to search anything. Everyone in the department would know exactly who it is. Which is why I doubt the origin of this screed.

          1. I’m not convinced that they would. Let me start by pointing out that although the linked article says the letter is written by a professor, the letter writer doesn’t make that claim – they merely refer to the addressed professors as ‘colleague’ and that they’ve had access to departmental emails. That’s a minimum of well over a hundred people – all the professors, visiting professors, adjunct professors, lecturers, graduate students, and staff members (for the absolute minimum of people it could include, you can count number of names who signed the two letters here: https://history.berkeley.edu/statement-support-black-lives-history-graduate-students-and-faculty ). That number doesn’t include faculty, staff, or grad students who didn’t happen to sign the letters – although I’d bet that if the person who wrote it *is* at Berkeley, they signed the letter. It also doesn’t include people outside the department who might also get history department emails, former and upcoming visiting professors, people in other departments who teach a cross-listed course, professors and graduate students in other departments who have worked closely enough with the history department to wind on the department list, favored undergraduates. That’s a whole lot of people who department members might not know much about beyond their academic record.

            If the writer’s specialty is something that doesn’t lend itself to their political viewpoint showing up in their academic work, they could (and certainly would) avoid flaunting their non-left-wing opinions in order to get and keep jobs in academia.

            1. The stuff pasted here is pretty reasonable. The full letter has too many boomerisms for me to believe it’s real — “soft bigotry of low expectations” and “our department appears to have been entirely captured by the interests of the Democratic National Convention” sounds like something some TPUSA dork wrote.

              1. Those boomerisms are also what I would expect to be used by someone at Berkeley who didn’t want to be outed as the author. Many academics realize that the language they use isn’t quite as identifiable as a fingerprint, but can be pretty distinctive. If I were writing something like this and trying to hide my identity, I’d certainly be trying to make it look like something some TPUSA dork would write.

    2. Black lives only matter when Progressives can make political capital out of the loss of a black life.

    3. What’s more likely: there’s a black Candace Owens acolyte mole in the Berkeley history department OR this is stupid boomer bate?

      1. I don’t know why Boomers waste their time with blacks. They will never vote Republican or believe in limited government. In the spirit of racial reconciliation, I can see why they try but their breathe is wasted on this Sisyphean task.

        1. Bro, why are you hiding? We know it’s you “Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER” you gross fucking bigot.

  18. The real question is why they decided to arrest him, instead of calling a cab for him? The man drank too much and was sleeping it off in an inappropriate place but off the public roadways and not endangering anyone at the time. He moved his car as requested, and then tragedy ensued, when the police decided to arrest him for public intoxication, we can only presume.

    Sheriff Taylor only locked up staggering slurring Otis, well, mostly he locked himself up, so that he’d have a safe night, clean bed, and a home-cooked breakfast brought in by Aunt Bea the next morning. Being arrested in the big city means having to stay up all night, being thrown in a tank with a lot of undesirables and dirty conditions, and then all sorts of expenses of lost wages, lawyer fees, etc.

    Now, Mr. Brooks is dead from having drunkenly resisted arrest on a charge of being drunk, and the police officers’ reputations, livelihood, and personal lives will become fodder for an unforgiving, angry public. We need our police, and it’s a tough job they do! That said, aren’t they trained to show better situational judgment, especially since they often enjoy a monopoly of (lethal) force?

    Have to ask, how did the taser get away from the officer? Did the other officer even try to use his taser on Brooks? And, why don’t the police ever shoot to slow down, instead of to kill, a “perp” resisting arrest on a charge of disorderly conduct or some such, stolen taser, notwithstanding? There was a story this morning that Brooks had been shot in the back, although news accounts are often erroneous. Let’s hope this is untrue for both the officers’ and bereaved family’s sakes.

    1. And, why don’t the police ever shoot to slow down,

      You’re stupid and all your opinions are stupid.

      1. These last two wall texts have me saying “stupid” a lot.

    2. Have to ask, how did the taser get away from the officer? Did the other officer even try to use his taser on Brooks?

      TAKE A LOOK AT THE MYRIAD OF CAMERA FOOTAGE OF THE INCIDENT THAT’S ALREADY AVAILABLE ONLINE, FFS!

      1. Unicorn,
        Yeah, I’ve looked at video from the police body cams, dashboard, and Wendy’s, and nothing conclusively shows any answers to the questions I raised. The Wendy’s very short footage was most disturbing but incomplete. Brooks was clearly running away for about 30 feet, while being pursued by one officer in the Wendy’s footage, but in the fallen body cam footage, we see both officers go to one side of the frame together and then a second later we hear 3 shots. The vids con’t square up at all. No way to tell what happened. the few seconds before the shots rang out on any of the clips I saw.

        Body cam footage during the scuffle was chaotic and completely out of focus. One body cam conveniently fell to the ground (perhaps they’re withholding the other cam’s footage), and so we’re treated to a lot of night time sky, instead of witnessing actual events.

        It’s a mess. I did watch one officer not take the fairly lucid man up on his offer to walk to his sister’s, instead of driving there, and intimate that were he to drive he’d be in violation of the law and proceed as if he were guilty of pre-crime. Guess it’s fine to arrest someone on public intoxication, but Brooks wasn’t irrational or overtly impaired, as per his convo with the officer.

        Saw no video of the actual shooting or dead body. Could you link that footage for me? Thanks much!

        1. Here you go. Shooting footage starts around 1:05.

        2. I don’t think you did what you say you did.

          Right off the bat you claim he was sleeping it off in a safe place off the road.

          No, that’s not true at all. He was sitting in the drive-through when he passed out. He did not pull off and park. He clearly intended to order food and continue his drive home. That’s why the police engaged him in the first place. If he had been passed out in a parking space, nobody likely would have noticed.

          He was not arrested for public intoxication. He was arrested for DUI. He was sitting in a running car, passed out drunk right where he stopped last.

          I have to wonder what video you watched to look for those answers that you couldn’t find. The officer clearly and plainly states what the arrest is for, and there is a long discussion leading up to the arrest. Both officers clearly treat him with respect and dignity and go “by the book” with the intoxication evaluation process, even though he is quite obviously completely plastered.

          Saw no video of the shooting? But you watched the Wendy’s security video? Uh… watch it again. It clearly shows the entire shooting… the chase, the pointing of the taser back at the pursuing officer and the officer firing. There are zero gaps in the coverage and the video is plenty clear.

    3. Have to ask, how did the taser get away from the officer? Did the other officer even try to use his taser on Brooks?

      No, you didn’t have to ask that. Instead, you could have just read the damned piece you’re commenting on, including the parts where it quite clearly answers both of those stupid questions.

      1. You obviously haven’t watched the chaotic, out of focus and disjointed vids. What is said should be corroborated, if possible, that’s the only point.

        The wrestling between the suspect and two police officers seemed to show that Brooks didn’t want to be arrested or tazed and that he was able to get one of the tasers, but it didn’t clearly show what happened after that. His bad for resisting, but a death sentence is pretty damn severe.

        And, I love our men and women in blue– enough to hope that they’re given better strategies and non-lethal weapons to subdue minor suspects on the street or during SWAT raids which can be unconscionably lethal for innocents.

        1. The Wendy’s video shows him running away, and as he is running he raises the taser and points it at the officer behind him, pulling the trigger (you can see it light up). That’s when he gets shot.

          The still from that video is the banner for this piece. In it you can see that he is still pulling the trigger on the taser as he turns back to the front. The officer can be seen firing at that instant.

          None of what you claim to be ambiguous, unknown or hidden is missing from the videos.

          1. No, this is definitely one of the most visually documented police incidents we’ve ever seen

    4. “Being arrested in the big city means…….. being thrown in a drunk tank with a lot of undesirables…..”

      Ummmm……yeahhh. That’s true.

  19. Said it the other day, and I’ll say it again. Headlines that ask a question suck. It is lazy writing by a coward who is unwilling to stake out a firm position.

    1. Is Journalism a failing career field?

      1. Bro, why are you hiding like a bitch? We know it’s you “Tulpa Disciple/TULPA FOLLOWER” you gross fucking bigot.

  20. Once Brooks had grabbed the Taser and fired it towards the officer, shooting him would seem to be justified. “Lawful but awful”, or “Awful but lawful”. But why did it get to that point? Probably the type of “alternative peacekeeping agency” that some have proposed would have just let him sleep it off in the car, or walk to his sister’s house. But police as presently constituted can’t do that.

  21. “Do you think that you would be in violation of something if you were to drive your vehicle?” Rolfe wonders.

    Fucking verbal judo.

    1. Yes, pre-crime indictment to my ears.

    2. That’s right out of Traffic Cop 101 – get the driver to admit guilt, and you guarantee the win in court.

  22. This is going to be Michael Brown all over again, isn’t it?

    1. Another gentle giant, worthy of sainthood, has been gunned down by a racist American cops because he didn’t like the color of his skin. #Sad

    2. That is entirely the point, I’m afraid.

      And unfortunately, if you have not lived through this rodeo before, apparently you can’t see it. So only the people who were already on board with law enforcement reform before the Michael Brown propaganda machine kicked in to action will find it familiar.

      But really, that case had to be your second go around. Because if it was… now you’ve seen it too many times for it to be coincidence. They always pick these emotional cases where the police are actually quite justified in their actions. They push a false narrative to the public to fire up the base… then when the facts come out, the base won’t accept the facts and their political enemies who do accept the facts will be seen as racist.

      This is no accident, no coincidence. They did it with Trayvon Martin (posting a picture of him at 12 instead of his true appearance, etc.). They did it with the Gentle Giant… who they knew within the first 24 hours had reached into the vehicle and grabbed the officer’s weapon – getting injured in the process as the weapon went off in his hand… they held on to that and to the eyewitnesses (particularly the black lady who was right there) who put the lie to the entire “hands up, don’t shoot” narrative… all of it, they held closely for a month. Obama sent Eric Holder down there to make sure everything was kosher – and they made sure that the riots took hold before they allowed the truth to come out.

      They could have easily stopped all of that in its tracks by reporting what they knew immediately… which was certainly within a week, but probably was within 24 hours.

      They wanted unrest in these cases. They didn’t want unrest in the case of Kelly Thomas. That might have gotten some changes through. And it certainly wouldn’t create any racial divides. So they sat on that horrific story.

      If you were not on this bandwagon when Balko was telling us about Mississippi medical examiners framing people for capital murder, this all might sound like a bit too much. But in the intervening years there have been just way too many cases of horrific police shootings… and the only things that get pushed to the national forefront are ones where the initial narrative is horrifying and based on race – but the truth turns out to be something completely different.

      Most of these cases do not turn out to be something completely different. Most of them turn out to be police doing the wrong thing and getting someone killed, and then going entirely unpunished. So when I see a bunch of political hacks trying hard to derail the movement to fix this problem in order to score cheap race-baiting points, I get a little agitated. Because their cheap point-scoring is the reason that we didn’t get any reforms through after Balko’s “Rise of the Warrior Cop” came out. They took everything sideways and since we can’t fix racism, we just gave up.

      1. So, wait….. it almost seems like you are suggesting that false narratives are willfully put out there on a massive scale to……. exacerbate grievance and resentment? To make things worse? By people who claim to only be seeking justice and unity?

        Say it ain’t so!

        Haha.

  23. Brooks was … posing no threat to the general public

    He was (admittedly) drunk, agitated, pursued by police, and in possession of a (less-) lethal weapon.

    This would appear to provide, um, reason for “the general public” being armed as “posing no threat”.

    1. Agree. Anyone who thinks it a good idea to grab a cops weapon is indeed a threat to the general public.

      1. Anyone who forcibly steals a weapon from anybody is a public threat.

  24. …in the back. THE BACK.

    1. So you think violent felons that punch cops and steal their weapons should be allowed to flee unharmed?

      You’re an imbecile.

  25. Yeah, let him park his car and walk off to his sister’s? Maybe it’s true, but if you have ever come in contact with a person like Rayshard Brooks (and no, I’m not talking about his skin tone), you know that if his mouth is moving he’s lying. Thirty minutes later (or less) he’d be back at Wendy’s trying to drive that car away.

  26. Maybe it’s true, but if you have ever come in contact with a person like Rayshard Brooks (and no, I’m not talking about his skin tone), you know that if his mouth is moving he’s lying.

    I went to school with plenty of fuckheads like this guy. To call them semi-feral is almost a kindness; their mental discipline, self-control, and future time-orientation is so low, that they could throw a temper tantrum and not remember a damn thing they did during that tantrum 20 minutes later. They’ll argue “I never did anything like that,” and will say it with complete sincerity–not because they’re liars, even though they are and will do it right to your face, but because they simply don’t have the mental acuity to process their emotional episodes whenever their oppositional defiant disorder kicks in. You can show them direct audio and video and they’d still claim with a straight face that they never acted up.

    People like this are effectively broken before they even reach the age of the adulthood, because they’ve spent their entire lives marinating in social and cultural dysfunction. You can give people like this all the money in the world, and it will never be enough because they simply have no conception of how to conduct themselves in a stable, high-trust universe.

    1. It’s what it does to us to kill and snuff the life out of another human because he resists arrest and fights against being tazed on a unclear charge of what, public intoxication?

      Speaking of tazing, Brooks’ name “Rays-hard” rather sounds like a tazer, coincidentally.

      1. Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.

        1. Lol, Red White, you win that prize. I don’t play games, stupid, satanic, or otherwise. I just like to be left alone. Surely you do, too. Which is why, in the event you or I or any loved ones make stupid mistakes, we should always have supported moral law enforcement of proportional response (which isn’t always easy to parse, I’ll grant you.)

          But, falling asleep in a Wendy’s drive-through didn’t have to result in an arrest, especially since Brooks was cogent and cooperative with the officers. The subsequent fight in resisting arrest and not wanting to be tazed, while truly stupid, dangerous and illegal, should not have ended in a de facto capital punishment sentence on the spot.

          Blaming the officers involved won’t help. The LE policies and procedures both hamper street police in effective enforcement and escalate conflict to the point of no return. The SOPs need rethinking, and serving police should be given access to better subduing weaponry and situational guidelines that don’t deprive citizens of their right to life in often minor conflicts.

          This story could have ended with public intoxication suspect fled after resisting arrest, and, after being apprehended a few days later, was given his day in court, instead of the morgue.

          1. But, falling asleep in a Wendy’s drive-through didn’t have to result in an arrest,

            Lol, he wasn’t just “publically intoxicated,” he was driving drunk and passed out in the Wendy’s drive-through. Driving drunk is an arrestable offense no matter what jurisdiction you’re in.

            Brooks was a piece of shit with a violent criminal history, who was stupid enough to get so drunk he hit a .108 on the breathalyzer. The fuckhead was lucky he didn’t kill someone, and if they had let him “walk it off,” could have walked into traffic and died anyway. This is not someone who was ever going to contribute anything positive to society, considering he managed to get picked up for something nearly every year in the last ten years. Society is not going to be any worse off for his passing, and I’m not surprised at all that this is the way he ended up going out.

            1. And that .108 was after at least an hour of not drinking. While he was driving it was very likely higher than that.

              1. That depends. Usually your BAC will continue rising for a while after you stop drinking, because it takes time for the stomach or intestinal lining to absorb the alcohol. He _might_ have been at .07 and legal an hour earlier. That would mean there was something else going on to account for his falling asleep in the drive-through lane. (Was this an active drive-through lane at the time?)

                Or all the alcohol was already in his bloodstream and the level was gradually falling as his liver burned it. But I don’t think it’s possible to have such a high level for an experienced drinker to pass out, and be down to .108 just an hour later, so there’s still some other reason he fell asleep. Nor do I think .108 is drunk enough to account for him fighting with the cops – he must have been a mental case drunk or sober.

          2. This story could have ended with public intoxication suspect fled after resisting arrest, and, after being apprehended a few days later,

            Do you really not see the giant planet sized hole in this plan?

    2. So…you think these fuckheads should be shot in the back when they run away from cops?

      1. I don’t know. What do you suggest?

        The guy attacked a cop and stole his taser. He’s running away. There are two options: (1) police let him get away or (2) they shoot him.

        (2) isn’t a big problem because most people understand that attacking a cop is suicidal. You seem to want to outlaw (2). Why is that a good idea?

        1. The guy attacked a cop and stole his taser. He’s running away AND WHILE RUNNING HE TURNS AND FIRES the stolen taser at the cops and appears to have hit one at least a glancing stroke (see the cop stumble and fall into the parked car in the video) at which point the other cop fires on Brooks.

          The cops spent 40 minutes with Brooks before the moved to arrest him. They never did anything violent or confrontational up until the moment they started to cuff him. Even when they moved to cuff him they did it without slamming him into a car or throw him facedown on the the pavement.

          Watch the full body-cam footage before you say that the cops were on a hair-trigger or violent or racist or even mean to Mr Brooks.

      2. I think you’re a fuckhead that’s deliberately trying to simplify the issue because you know the guy was a piece of shit and the world is better for him not being here anymore.

  27. I don’t know. I’m just spewing out of ignorance here.

    Why is it always guys with priors that end up in these situations? I fear there’s too much of a convenient tendency to overlook the fact their own actions led to such a fate. Worse, they’re turned into martyrs. I don’t see how a mural of Floyd does anything.

    Why is outrage reserved for these guys but not Justine Diamond or Tamil Rice and a host of other tragic interactions with police or citizens?

    Why is it upstanding citizens of any race or creed rarely, if ever, end up in trouble like this? Do you really thing a black pre-med student would be sleeping drunk and reaching for a fricken taser? Let’s get real man.

    Talk about not reading the cadence and pulse of modern society. If you’re not gonna walk the straight and narrow like the rest of society, then the probabilities you end up in trouble are going to increased exponentially.

    Cops don’t have time or resources to ‘hunt black’ people. They zero in on a specific behaviour. Maybe there are some assholes among them for sure but is it an epidemic? That has to be determined by sober and intelligent minds. I don’t think it’s as pervasive as claimed but who knows?

    Does this mean cops are angels? Shit, anyone who reads Reason knows they aren’t, and reforms are in indeed in order. But those reforms will be limited in effectiveness if the black community doesn’t do its part and deal with, say, the issue of kids born out of wedlock.

    Heck, this problem is now in the white community as well.

    This cultural problem sends kids into the world without proper guidance and guess what’s gonna happen when they encounter police? We’re asking police to be ‘counsellors’ and ‘law and enforcement’ at the same time. A bit of a lose-lose if you ask me. That won’t happen unless EVERYONE is honest about the issues and agree what needs to be done.

    Blacks need real leaders. Not CNN, Chappelle, Malcom Jenkins or Spike Lee repeating the same old tired angry message. Never mind about they scumbags Jackson and Sharpton. They need a new message. One way is to get off that Democrat plantation which has done little for them it seems. And BLM is pure Marxist horse shit that doesn’t help the situation.

    There are really interesting guys out there like Jericho Green, Burgess Owens, Brandum Tatum to go along with many outstanding public black intellectuals and personalities like David Webb, Elders, Williams and Sowell.

    Just like the cops need a new message.

    We all could use a new message.

    And some Dr. Pepper.

    1. Guess depends on how narrowly you are defining “these situations”:

      Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old African-American emergency medical technician, was fatally shot by Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) officers on March 13, 2020. Three LMPD officers executing a no-knock search warrant entered her apartment in Louisville, Kentucky.

      1. Retarded. They were the ones, sounds like, initiating force there.

        End the war on drugs. Stop no-knocks. No one should have any kind of ‘qualified immunity.’ Part of the problem is the perception police aren’t held accountable for these sorts of incidences.

        1. This is why that case did not ignite.

          Now they are trying to turn it sideways and make it about racist cops.

          It is a stupid thing to do. As you say, the war on drugs created that mess. She is simply collateral damage in that war….

          No knock warrants routinely issued with perfunctory inspection on little to no evidence. Police playing with their SWAT toys for no good reason. Bolting into someone’s bedroom in the middle of the night because you think they might flush the evidence (if there is so little evidence that it can be flushed, you don’t need SWAT).

          But it does point out their true objective. They want angry black voters and shamed liberal white voters to go out and vote Democrat. So, rather than fix those items that have been on our to-do list for decades, they say it is the racist cop’s fault.

          1. Correct.
            Which is why Louisville’s response, voting to ban no knock raids, has gotten little coverage

      2. Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old African-American emergency medical technician, was fatally shot by Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) officers on March 13, 2020. Three LMPD officers executing a no-knock search warrant entered her apartment in Louisville, Kentucky.

        This has nothing to do with race.

        As for the no-knock warrant, there might be circumstances where the risk might be acceptable; obviously this isn’t one of them. But no-knock warrants are issued by judges, judges who should evaluate the case and examine whether such a risky warrant is justified.

        As far as I can tell, the judge in the Taylor case hasn’t even been named. Why is that? Why aren’t judges who aren’t doing their jobs held accountable?

      3. And Louisville has now banned no-knock raids. Good. Next is to get the rest of the country to do the same.

    2. “Let’s get real man.”

      Haha… Joe Biden, is that you?

  28. I guess the only ones who think this was a clean kill are MADD.

    1. Biden’s Diaper…

      I think people have forgotten MADD’s crusade for tougher drinking and diving laws…

      1. “tougher…diving laws…”

        If they saved just one child from the bends, it is worth it.

        1. Opps, forgot my snorkel……..

  29. The cops should let a drunken man just walk home. Sure. He might stumble onto traffic resulting in deaths. Or he could take his mom’s car and go on a joy ride and kill someone else.

    Yes, when a man drinks so much that he passes out in a Wendy’s drive thru, the cops should just let him walk home. If he goes 100 mph on the local road the next day and runs into a family, we label that as covid death and laugh like fucking retards like laugh tracks in a sitcom. “Hahahaha what the fuck can we do we have to fight racism”

    The silver lining of America in ashes is that the left wing pocs that torched paradise might be forced to return home and taste the “freedom” that they tried to impose here. Go to Korea and spend 10 hours in schools hoping for a 10 hour job that pays you nothing.

  30. This is shocking news for all of us for more info click here
    https://bestappsapk.com/antenna-view-apk/

  31. I grew up in a small town and it was not unknown for cops to pull a drunk driver off the road and have him/her lock their car up and then drive them home. In this case why not just call a tow truck to take his car to the pound and give him a ride home. The pound will probably cost him a few hundred dollars and would be good lesson learned for drinking too much and driving. Or do that and give him a DUI ticket and still give him a ride home. The primary goal was getting him off the road right then.

    1. A look at his criminal record shows that he had a three-year probation and one-year suspended sentence in August 2016. In 2018 he violated his probation and was arrested for it in January of this year; his lawyer must have made a convincing argument to not put him back in jail, but a DUI just three months after getting let off the hook by the court would have been enough to put him back in jail.

      I wouldn’t be surprised if it occurred to his drunk ass right before he got in the car that getting a ticket for DUI would have fucked him over, and he freaked.

  32. At least they fired the cop who shot him in the back while he was running away.

    1. For appearances. And to diminish potential blowback.

      My guess is he will get his job back.

  33. As I understand it, the current standard in many jurisdictions is that police can use deadly force to stop a violent felony suspect who is trying to escape from them.

    We can certainly legally change that to “police can only shoot someone if the police officer’s life is clearly in danger”. But why would that be a good policy?

  34. Is it beyond the bounds of possibilities that an intoxicated guy who just engaged in a physical fight with police officers, and carrying a stolen taser might pose a threat of harm to another citizen in the next few minutes while he’s running away?

    1. IMO, in all likelihood he wasn’t a threat. He was a sleepy drunk guy who was content to sleep in his car as long as people left him alone and freaked out about the idea of getting arrested.

      I think the cops’ use of force was legally justified, but not necessary and should have been avoided.

      1. So, you seem to be saying that suspects should be able to attack the police and then run away without police using deadly force to stop them. If that’s the rule, why wouldn’t the rational behavior of any felon be to first subdue/hurt any arresting police officer weaker than themselves and then run away? Can policing really function that way?

        1. To stop them running away? Yes. Running isn’t a capital crime, and we still are supposed to have a trial first before we execute someone anyway.

          If a cop loses his weapon to a suspected perp, I say that’s a shitty cop and he should be embarrassed. Too bad we had to get further proof that it was a shitty cop when he murdered that guy.

      2. So drunk drivers shouldn’t be removed from private property or face the consequences of their actions?

    2. In all likelihood the taser was for self-defense against the cops and didn’t pose any threat to the public, and it turns out that sentiment was justified.

      1. You deserve to be hit by a drunk driver.

  35. How long are we going to play a game of whether a black man being shot or subdued by a cop, of any race, is racist when cops do this to everyone? All you have to do is see the countless videos and reports on the internet.

  36. Your suggestion that “letting him walk home” was a viable option is naive. If , in walking home, he wanders into the street and is struck by a car, guess who is liable? And what if he wanders home and grabs the keys to another car, guess who is liable? And your statement that, had he he been a police officer, walking away was an option is belied by the many officers arrested for dui. Are you really suggesting dui offenders should not be arrested? Pls provide a list of crimes you think should receive a mulligan.

  37. Hey, everyone applauding the textualism of Neil Gorsuch.

    Look at this text.

    O.C.G.A. 16-3-21 (2010)

    …a person is justified in using force which is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily harm only if he or she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent death or great bodily injury to himself or herself or a third person or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.

    Lawful indeed.

    1. Maybe Damon Root can swing by this thread and remind us how “only the written word is the law, and all persons are entitled to its benefit.”

    2. You’re reading the wrong section. The right section is O.C.G.A. 17-4-20

      (b) Sheriffs and peace officers who are appointed or employed in conformity with Chapter 8 of Title 35 may use deadly
      force to apprehend a suspected felon only when the officer reasonably believes that the suspect possesses a deadly
      weapon or any object, device, or instrument which, when used offensively against a person, is likely to or actually does
      result in serious bodily injury; when the officer reasonably believes that the suspect poses an immediate threat of physical
      violence to the officer or others; or when there is probable cause to believe that the suspect has committed a crime
      involving the infliction or threatened infliction of serious physical harm

      I’d say starting a fight with an officer and DUI both count.

  38. That officer went from 0 to grabbing the arm, “your under arrest” in a split second. That’s provocative and sure to escalate. He could have said, “I’m going to have to arrest you and I hope you will cooperate”, or something like that. Why did he need to quickly grab him? Rayshard was pleasant and cooperating. Why not give him the benefit of the doubt? And if he refused to cooperate so what? So you sit there in the parking lot arguing about the arrest for a few minutes. Does that make the cops “look bad” or something? I’m getting tired of seeing cops act aggressively and inhumanely. Even if he deserved to be arrested, which I do not think was the case, they could have asked him for cooperation. That’s how you treat citizens. This is why people want to reform policing. They just don’t get it.

    1. You’re simply flat out wrong. There was about 40 minutes from the time the cops first started knocking on his window–he was passed out and had to be shaken awake–to the point where he was being cuffed. He’d been talked to, given field sobriety, given breathalyzer, and only then had the move to cuff him been made.

    2. Take 45 minutes and watch the full bodycam footage.

  39. Would charging DUI stick? After all, he was asleep at the wheel and not moving. The officers had him move his car to a parking space, so their judgement would be suspect in court. Public Intoxication?

    Did the officers tell Brooks why he was being handcuffed? Prof Fryer of Harvard, an economist, shows in his research that force used by police has a racial bias. Handcuffing is the first use of force.

    1. In the driver seat of a running vehicle in a public place? Pretty clear he didn’t get drunk after arrival, and no other way to get there than public road.

      Yeah, the charge would stick.

  40. A possible solution would be for the officers to drive him home. However, in this litigious and micro managed world we live in, there is likely a policy that prohibits this. Of course, if it were me, I would have lied, told him we were taking him home and I had to cuff him.

    1. And that lie would have set up the next cop he dealt with for a surprise attack.

  41. While the shooting was justified, it just as needless, too. No confrontation existed, it should never had reached this level. He was trespassing, and wanted to move on, but not in violation of the law (he didn’t want to drive drunk), so they arrest him?

    I’m not sure ‘why’ he was being arrested, even if it was for a “legitimate” reason, it was bad decision making on the officer’s part. His dismissal was premature, he deserves due process before he was terminated.

    1. He was driving drunk when they first came up on him. He was in a running car passed out drunk in the drive-thru lane.

      1. Look, I was a cop and somethings should never go “that” wrong and arresting a person is one of those things. It’s a 2 man unit, there are 2 armed men arresting another; you don’t put cuffs on a person to subdue them, you put cuffs on a person to keep them subdued. Of course something could go that wrong, but it behooves the officer to take precautions so they won’t go wrong.

        But everybody’s missing the salient point, this occurred on private property, the police had no authority whatsoever to enforce moving vehicular laws on private property. I’m uncertain, did the police insist he moves his car because he was trespassing? Did somebody complain? It seems to me the police were doing what we all know as “fucking” with him.

        Have you ever put cuffs on a person? You can’t if they’re resisting, but once he took an officers weapon, the game changed. But it should’ve never gotten to that point, it didn’t need too.

        1. Do you really think he got drunk while in the drive through lane? Or, being drunk already, that he somehow avoided public roads while getting there?

        2. the police had no authority whatsoever to enforce moving vehicular laws on private property.

          Hey dumbfuck, the manager called the cops to deal with the drunk driving moron. They had all the authority they needed.

          If you were a cop, you must have been one of the stupidest in history.

          1. The manager made a big mistake. He could have kept the line moving by just waking him up. He should be fired. Same for the police. How hard is it for two trained men to cuff a drunk? Too hard, apparently, so they killed him instead. Call the bus and move on. It’s ok in a police state.

  42. The author here must be taking his notes on law from a BAR Association criminal. Your opinions are despicable.
    The misdemeanors described here are NOT arrestable offenses and no police officer EVER has the authority to “punish” anybody or imprison anybody without a trial.
    What kind of fascist fucking douche would you have to be to even suggest such a thing.
    Maybe try reading the constitution once or thirty times. Especially the part on Due Process of Law. The thing the BAR Association scum like to pretend doesn’t exist.

  43. Arrest for DUI is absolutely necessary considering the lives many DUI drivers destroy. Brooks would be alive today if he had just cooperated he was under no threat from the police

    1. On the other hand, he clearly was under threat, what with being dead.

      Also, did you know DUI law is for all practical purposes the single area of law in which the US constitution doesn’t apply? No right against self-incrimination, no right against searches, even of your own bodily fluids. We can thank zealous anti-alcohol interest groups for this. Affecting public sentiment so much that the law can ignore the constitution–that’s what I call a PR victory.

      1. 1) There is nothing about the DUI “statutory codes” that are Law. But please, if you want to show me something valid, that says anything to the effect of “the constitution is the highest law of the land, except in cases of DUI entrapment in an unconstitutional, statutory jurisdiction…” Please, educate me.
        2) There is no statutory code on this earth that can lawfully abrogate a man’s unalienable rights. Period, the end. The constitution IS the law.

        The victim’s biggest mistake was that he opened his mouth to say anything to the cops except, “I don’t answer questions”.
        These municipal terrorists don’t have 1/100th the authority most people are led to believe. Thanks to public fool system and television indoctrination.

        1. The dude was drunk off his ass and on probation with a suspended sentence. He was fucked either way.

  44. If the cops involved had been black, there would be a lot less uproar over this incident. Had this incident occurred 2 months ago, there would be a lot less uproar over this incident. Had Mr Brooks been white, there would be a lot less uproar over this incident.

    The cops spent 40 minutes with Brooks, and by all the body-cam footage I’ve watched were nothing but calm, respectful, and practically gentle with him. After he blew 0.1something (well over 0.08), and they try to cuff him in a firm but non-threatening way–if being cuffed is ever non threatening…they didn’t slam him into a car or throw him face down onto the pavement…each cop took a wrist and moved his hands behind his back in order to cuff him. Then he lost his shit and started fighting.

    There was never anything in the 40 minutes prior to cuffing him that seemed at all out of the ordinary, let alone gave any indication of any sort of racist or psycho “respect my authority” leanings by the cops.

    1. How frustrating and time-consuming does an encounter (initiated by the police) have to be before it becomes OK to shoot a suspect in the back?

    2. “There was never anything…at all out of the ordinary…”? In a police state, true. People expect to be stopped, questioned, with or without justification. Police violence is a constant threat. It’s normal. But that doesn’t stop the continual tension from building up in a person’s mind. How many times is “too much” before a person snaps and goes out of control? How many times before a group snaps? How many times before a society snaps? People will submit to slavery, i.e., an authoritarian political system if trained from childhood to blindly obey, but it isn’t psychologically healthy. Backlash is inevitable. Institutionalized violence creates chaos. Still want it?

      1. Oh, fuck off. The guy was a drunk driving piece of shit with a criminal history a mile long. If he hadn’t been out on probation with a suspended sentence, he probably would have gone along with no incident at all. In his stupid drunken stupor, he likely realized that getting pinched for a DUI was going to put his dumb ass right back in prison and he freaked out.

        1. And of course they knew all about him, correct? Then why 40 minutes of conservation?
          “In his stupid drunken stupor” he overpowered two cops? This, after begging to be allowed to walk home.
          Yes, he freaked out. And the cops handled it so badly that he was killed running away. A second “freak out”?

  45. “…Brooks suggest the officers allow him…” as in, citizen begs his masters. And that’s where he went wrong. All he had to do was lock his car and start walking, no permission needed. But he thought he needed permission to live his life. He was either going to be arrested or not, that decision wasn’t his. The more he talked the worse it got. The greater the interaction, the more dangerous it became for him. Trying to cooperate was a fatal mistake. In a police state this is always a risk. The answer? Get the hell out!

    1. I am now making extra $19k or more every month from home by doing very simple and easy job online from home. I have received exactly $20845 last month from this home job. Join now this job and start making extra cash online by follow instruction on the given website.

      This is what I do……… Buzz Cash

  46. Who initiated the threat of violence?
    No victim = no crime.

  47. Drunk drivers kill at least 10,000 people in the U.S. each year. Police officers are not supposed to condone this by calling the man a cab or driving him home. They are duty bound to arrest him, so that his illegal and irresponsible behavior is not condoned and he is not enabled to later injure or kill others. Resisting such arrest is not the fault of the officers, and they should be expected to do anything but ensure that they can affect their arrest.

    Reducing armed encounters with law enforcement is not that difficult. First, people should obey the law and submit to legal arrest. Secondly, the Second Amendment, which was passed when firearms used flintlocks to fire, should be viewed in that context–and firearms laws and restrictions greatly tightened.

    1. Sorry for the typo. The officers should NOT be expected to do anything but ensure they can affect their LAWFUL arrest.

  48. I blame MADD for getting every worked up about drunk drivers .

  49. “Did Rolfe act based on a reasonable fear of “death or serious physical injury,” or did he needlessly shoot someone who was merely trying to escape?”

    Merely? He fired at the officer. That’s not “merely” anything.

  50. ” Brooks was on foot, posing no threat to the general public,”

    He just assaulted two police officers and was carrying a deadly weapon, a taser. So it’s an absurd to conveniently assume he was no threat to the general public.

    1. Brooks was asleep when he was accosted, then after 40 minutes of trying to placate he was assaulted FIRST. “…a deadly weapon…”?? The entire police force nationally have used this weapon thousands of times against unarmed citizens, claiming its non-lethal Now, it’s used against them and it’s a deadly weapon? Don’t be absurd.

      1. He was passed out drunk in his running car in the drive-thru, and the manager of the Wendy’s had to call the cops to deal with him. He wasn’t parked in the lot taking a nap and police decided to mess with him for fun. He was not assaulted, he was being placed under arrest for DUI.

    2. does it merit being shot in the back? any reasonable person would say no.

  51. sorry but ‘cop-loving libertarian’ is an oxymoron folks. I’m shaking my damn head reading these comments.

  52. Rolfe may have shot Brooks because he just got punched in the face. I might see Rolfe shooting Brooks in the leg to stop him. Shooting someone in the back has been a no-no ever since the wild west days.

    1. Didn’t the slave patrol try to shoot Eliza in the back as she leapt from ice floe to ice floe after the Supreme Court upheld the Fugitive Slave Law? It’s been a while since I read the book…

  53. So if sleeping after a beer is the same as driving after a beer, does that make it OK for a Kleptocracy cop to kill me when I lay me down to sleep?

  54. So if sleeping after a beer is the same as driving after a beer, does that make it OK for a Kleptocracy cop to kill me when I lay me down to sleep?

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.