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Justin Amash on Tamir Rice Outcome: Cops Don’t Deserve Extra Leniency

Why do the police get away with crimes ordinary citizens would go to jail for?

Tamir RiceTamir RiceThe grand jury’s decision not to charge either of the two police officers who killed 12-year-old Tamir Rice in a Cleveland park last year is as frustrating as it was predetermined.

Of course authorities and adjudicators thought the killing was justified—they are instructed to ignore the victim’s perspective, and only consider whether inaction could have conceivably put the officers’ lives at risk, in the imaginations of the officers. That’s the legal standard, so it’s hardly a surprise it was obeyed.

But not everyone is thrilled with a standard that tilts the scales of justice so decisively in the cops’ favor nearly every single time. Libertarian-leaning Republican Rep. Justin Amash had this to say about the Tamir Rice decision on Twitter:

That last point is something I also raised on Twitter yesterday. In a sane world, one might expect the cops to receive less leniency than ordinary citizens in cases where they kill a harmless, unarmed boy. After all, they are trained to successfully navigate tense situations: it’s literally their job to go to great lengths to keep people alive. We might even expect the police—again, the people we pay to take on some degree of risk—to use a different calculus than the average person when weighing threats to their own lives against threats to others.

As Jamelle Bouie writes at Slate:

Part of policing is risk. Not just the inevitable risk of the unknown, but voluntary risk. We ask police to “serve and protect” the broad public, which—at times—means accepting risk when necessary to defuse dangerous situations and protect lives, innocent or otherwise. It’s why we give them weapons and the authority to use them; why we compensate them with decent salaries and generous pensions; why we hold them in high esteem and why we give them wide berth in procedure and practice.

What we see with Tamir Rice—and what we’ve seen in shootings across the country—is what happens when the officer’s safety supercedes the obligation to accept risk. If “going home” is what matters—and risk is unacceptable—then the instant use of lethal force makes sense. It’s the only thing that guarantees complete safety from harm.

It’s also antithetical to the call to “serve and protect.” But it’s the new norm.

Indeed. And as long as the norm prevails, there will be more Tamir Rices—and more grieving mothers deprived of justice. The lives of the agents of the state matter infinitely more than the lives of regular people.

Photo Credit: Rice

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    ...it’s literally their job to go to great lengths to keep people alive.

    News to them.

  • Swiss Servator||

    I know such people exist - I guess they all end up firefighters/EMTs, Coast Guard, etc., instead?

  • LynchPin1477||

    I just got done with my EMT class, and the first thing drilled into our heads is "don't put yourself at risk". It makes sense (don't create more victims), but I also think part of being an emergency responder is accepting a certain level of objective risk in service of others.

  • WTF||

    Yeah, seriously Robby, how can you even type this?

  • Aresen||

    He giggles evilly as he types.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    He mistakenly typed literally when he meant ostensibly.

  • Citizen X||

    Robby ostensibly can't even.

  • WTF||

    That's not okay.

  • Citizen X||

    Literally!

  • Swiss Servator||

    Probably wearing this one out - but if I behaved like these trigger happy cops, when I was in Iraq or Afghanistan....I'd be E-1, 20 to Life Sentence Servator.

    Cop gets a lot more $ and goes home very night, compared to a PFC in the US Army sitting in some Asian hotspot.

  • Swiss Servator||

    *every*

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    That point isn't made enough, quite frankly.

  • R C Dean||

    You could set off a very interesting debate, on a number of fronts, by introducing legislation that would adopt, for law enforcement, the ROEs applied to our troops in actual combat settings.

    It would be epic, in fact, to listen to copsuckers explain that they need to be able to kill with fewer restrictions than the troops do. Wires would be crossed. Heads would explode.

  • Rhywun||

    Well, they like to pretend they're military so good idea.

  • Deep Lurker||

    Given how they're armed with weapons and gear forbidden to ordinary citizens, they are military. They're "Troops, or Ships of War" that the States aren't suppose to have without special Congressional permission.

    They're the "standing armies" that the founders warned us about.

  • Rhywun||

    I was just going by the outfits and their rank lingo, but yeah now they have the weapons too.

  • Cavadus||

    Argh, I know. As veteran myself I absolutely HATE that these fuckers are trying to insert themselves into veteran culture. It really pisses me off and I've ended up having to leave virtually every single veterans group on Facebook because of it.

  • sarcasmic||

    Even if there were rules, who would enforce them? The cops sure wouldn't, and no prosecutor will. So it's a moot point.

  • R C Dean||

    I'm thinking it would be a federal law, and could help people bringing civil suits.

  • sarcasmic||

    What's the point? Soak the taxpayers even more while nothing happens to the criminal cops?

  • R C Dean||

    Well, given a choice between:

    (1) Nothing happens to the cops, and the victims get nothing, and

    (2) Nothing happens to the cops, and the victims get something.

    I'll take door number 2.

  • UCrawford||

    Actually, I'd take door number 1 because it increases the odds that the law is reformed to hold police accountable. The settlements/lottery ticket help quash the incentive for police reform by pacifying the people who'd be the loudest voices for change while sticking taxpayers with the bill.

  • Some Engineer||

    I think it would need to be something along the lines of a UCMJ and ROE rolled into one, and it would need to be enforced at the state level.

    Also, each state would need to have at least two jurisdictions, and all investigations from the jurisdiction would need to be done by an office located well outside of it.

  • Florida Man||

    Asian hotspot...great, now I'm aroused.

  • WTF||

    You so horny?

  • Florida Man||

    Any-ting you want baby.

  • ||

    Florida man python too boo-coo!

  • Bill Dalasio||

    Mr. Servator, that is an exceedingly good point. It's unfortunate that, with all the militarization of the police, the same level of actual professionalism and discipline isn't demanded of the police as is demanded of our actual military.

  • Lee G||

    I would argue that a lot of it has to do with the fact that there are no military trade unions in the USA.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    THIS, THIS, THIS!

  • Some Engineer||

    Now sending a letter to my Senator asking for Unionization of the Armed Forces.

    I expect a prompt reply.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    That's what I find especially irksome. In CA (and I assume it's the same in IL) cops get "hero" retirement pay. They "put their lives on the line", and in return, they get a 3% @ 50 retirement package, plus lifetime medical. I don't know a single cop that has a pension of less than 100k a year here, and in some cases, it's closer to 200k.

    I keep hearing the "go home safely to my family" or "I feared for my life!!!" tripe. Fuck you, then. Give back your hero pay. Oh, and give up your lifetime nationwide CCW while you're at it.

  • WTF||

    They "put their lives on the line",

    This claim drives me nuts. They literally do just the opposite of this; they put the public's lives on the line to protect their own safety. And then demand we call them 'heroes' in the bargain.

  • Swiss Servator||

    Their really crappy driving costs more of them than any dog/toddler/old person in bed/person with their back turned and running away or whatever they decide to shoot today.

  • Tundra, well-chilled.||

    You mean driving while looking down at the screen of the laptop is unsafe?

  • Jerryskids||

    Not as unsafe as riding your bike in the bike lane in the vicinity of a cop looking down at the screen of his laptop. That guy's family should be grateful they weren't sent a bill for the costs of scraping him and his bike off the bumper of the cruiser. Those Schwinns can leave some nasty scratches.

  • Robert||

    It's like the rest of us exist to protect them, instead of vice versa.

  • retiredfire||

    So, if you burst into a home, during a sweep of an area, and was confronted with an individual, who could have been a small adult, who reached for a gun, in his waistband, and you fired, you would have been brought up on charges?
    I don't believe it.
    What was the ROE? Only fire if fired upon?
    It seems to be a certainty that these two cops came upon the scene, too close and in too much of a hurry, but that is an issue of procedure.
    The only judgement, on the shooting, is at the instant it happened and what came before is irrelevant to that particular decision, unless it could be shown that they intentionally put themselves into a position to provoke the situation - a very high bar.

  • Dan Bongard||

    They drove overland through a park, screeched to a halt ten feet away from the suspect, jumped out of the car and shot him.

    That is probably THE stupidest way to handle a report of a man pointing a gun at people. It certainly qualifies as "provoking the situation". Why not stop further away, challenge the person over the car speaker while covering him from behind it? They skipped straight from 0 to Rambo Bullshit and bypassed countless less-lethal approaches. For this, they get "hero pay".

  • ||

    Very ballsy on the part of Amash.

  • JW||

    He seems to be one the few in Congress to have any.

  • Tundra, well-chilled.||

    He's an impressive dude. Makes me wonder how the fuck he ended up in DC.

  • UCrawford||

    Pretty simple...his opponent in the last election went with a campaign so racist (accusing him of being an al-Qaeda supporter) that even the people who didn't like Amash's views sympathized with him. It also led to the best post-election speech I've heard in awhile when Amash told the guy to fuck off with his fake conciliatory concession speech and said he got into politics to remove people like him from office.

    Also, Amash seems to be really good about constituent service (which is the most important part of staying an incumbent) and takes the time to explain each of his votes and his reasons for them. I think people respect that.

  • UCrawford||

    Accused him of being an al-Qaeda supporter because he's of Lebanese descent, I should have said.

  • jacob||

    You beat me to it. For an R to say this, I have to think he's alienating a chunk of his party's registered voters.

  • JW||

    It’s also antithetical to the call to “serve and protect.”

    WAR ON COPS.

  • R C Dean||

    Nicely done, Justin.

    Because I lack his PR skills, I would have gone with this:

    We are grateful to that small handful of police officers who risk their own safety to effectively and responsibly protect our communities and families. They must be out there somewhere.

  • Brendan||

    Those three can't be everywhere, but I'm sure they appreciate your recognition.

  • Swiss Servator||

    OT: a little something for ENB...

  • Lee G||

    Very little apparently

  • Swiss Servator||

    I finally Sugarfree'd a link!

    Try this

  • Lee G||

    Horrible, although the devil in me wants to make a poorly advised joke about "Hung"arians.

  • ||

    Sugarfreed the link.

  • ||

    I should refresh fresh posts before posting.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    You messed up the link!

  • Swiss Servator||

    I prefer to think of it as joining a larger community - the Link SugarFreers.

  • Florida Man||

    ARBLEGARBLARBLE LYNX!!!!!!

  • Lee G||

    I can hear fedora dude screaming already.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    While not fedora dude, I present avid Reason reader David French: The Grand Jury Made a Defensible Decision not to Indict in the Tamir Rice Case

  • Lee G||

    ugh, you suck Crusty

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Yes. I know. You see, what is important is to go to the extreme to keep the officers from being indicted, and arguing over the smallest details of occurred as a way to deflect that the officer should not have been hired, that the police department lied about what happened until there was a video, and that the video shows a young person being killed by a police officer who did not pause to assess the situation.

  • Swiss Servator||

    And left him to bleed out, interfered with aid attempts and generally should be burning in Hell.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Let's ignore that and focus on the race of the Tamir Rice, the size of Tamir Rice (he was like, 5'7!!!), and whether or not he may have been reaching into his waistband, which the officer had a clear view while driving in a slow, controlled manner.

  • R C Dean||

    That's what just astonishes me. Not being let off the hook for the shooting (which is expected), but that no one thought there was anything wrong with refusing to call an ambulance.

  • Robert||

    When there's somebody bleeding on the ground, leave it to the police, they know how to handle the situation, & have to use force to keep others away for their own safety. For everybody's safety, everybody must stay away, for the body might explode at any instant.

  • Jerryskids||

    However sucky the sucky cop was, prosecutors are far worse - and it pisses me off no end that blissfully ignorant people spout off ignorant shit. The grand jury didn't make a decision in this case other than the same decision every grand jury makes - to do whatever the prosecutor tells them to do. Few prosecutors anywhere at anytime ever give the grand jury the complete facts from both sides to render a fair and impartial decision - that's what the trial jury is for. It's a prosecutor's job (as the prosecutor sees it) to secure an indictment and a conviction, and that's it, period, end of discussion. It's a betrayal of his very office (as he sees it) to present the grand jury with any evidence which might possibly give them any hint that the defendant might be anything other than 1000% totally guilty. That's the "fairness" of the system - it's the prosecutor's job to get defendants locked up and it's the defense's job to keep them from being locked up and nobody gives a shit whether the defendant is guilty or innocent. It's not their job to give a shit.

  • sarcasmic||

    Unless the defendant is a cop, in which case the prosecutor is their defense attorney.

  • Lee G||

    Exactly. Is there sufficient evidence to warrant putting this before an actual trial judge?

  • Jordan||

    It's a prosecutor's job (as the prosecutor sees it) to secure an indictment and a conviction, and that's it, period, end of discussion.

    Yes, that's how they see it. Their job is supposed to be to see that justice is done. That means don't take a case to a grand jury if you don't believe an indictment and conviction is warranted. McGinty is just too much of a coward to do so.

  • Muzzled Woodchipper||

    This.

    Either do whatever you can to get an indictment or don't even bring it to a grand jury and own it. This was an attempt at making it appear as if he tried to get an indictment but that the jury just didn't buy it instead of purposeful obfuscation and the willingness to tank the whole process.

  • UCrawford||

    Same thing happened in the Ferguson shooting. The prosecutor overcharged the case based on the evidence, then softballed the case to the grand jury to undermine it so he could claim "Well, I tried, but the grand jury just didn't buy it".

  • Lee G||

    It's time like these I miss being able to view and copy the policeone comments.

  • Citizen X||

    How come?

  • Lee G||

    It's always more informative to view their paranoia and arrogance as expressed in their own words.

  • Swiss Servator||

    A spokescreature like French will only give us a watered down version.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    You can view comments on their facebook page if that is what you really want.

  • Lee G||

    Argh, cop fellators galore. It's like cop bukakke in there.

  • Citizen X||

    Bucopke?

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    It's like cop bukakke in there.


    Were this a different time, I would link....

  • Citizen X||

    You could go to the Facebook comments for this article. It's... not pleasant. There's a handful of people who DON'T think murdering a child is cool, at least.

  • Jerryskids||

    Officers must be patient, put own lives at risk to responsibly manage dangerous situations.

    Putting his own life at risk is exactly what led to the cop shooting the kid. You don't get to squawk about "feared for my life" when you're the one who fucked up and put your life on the line. Forget all the bullshit about how real the gun looked (although as far as I know, nobody knew what the gun looked like until after the kid was shot so that's irrelevant) and how old the kid looked - either the cops had a pretty good idea it was a kid with a toy and had no reason to shoot him or the cops thought it was a dangerous thug with a real gun and had no reason to get within 50 yards of the kid. The fact that they pulled right up to him indicates they either didn't think he was a threat or they're fucking retards who have no business being anywhere near a gun and a badge.

    This shit reminds me so much of the cop who tried to stop a suspect from fleeing by stepping in front of the guy's car - and then used the excuse that the guy was driving right toward him to justify shooting the guy. "The perp was only three yards away from me when he appeared to go for a weapon in his waistband so I used all my extensive knowledge of proper police procedure and training to neutralize the threat." Yeah? Why didn't you use all your extensive knowledge of proper police procedure and training to not be three yards away from a guy you've been told is threatening people with a gun?

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    That's a standard cop move. Stand in front of a car and claim that he tried to run you over, and then mag dump through the windshield.

  • sarcasmic||

    It wouldn't surprise me if they teach a class in the Academy on how to create situations where lethal force will be justified.

  • sarcasmic||

    it’s literally their job to go to great lengths to keep people alive.

    That is such a quaint notion.

    Their job is to serve and protect the public, and by "the public" I mean everyone except any individual they may encounter. After all, they can't keep the public safe if they themselves aren't safe, right? So if any individual fails to obey or does something that the officer might possibly perceive as threatening, then they must be killed. To keep the public safe. Besides that, people don't seek out to become police officers to help people. They seek out to become police officers so they can hurt people without consequence. The notion of "peace officer" is dead and gone.

  • Mama La Pinga||

    As mentioned earlier:

    Police shooting people, asking questions later, and being found justified doing so is par for the course in America.

    The person that caused this tragedy is the African-American individual that called the police on their African American family member/Friend.

    The other day in Chicago, an African-American Father called the cops on his African-American Son. The police showed up to the home and immediately shot the Son and the downstairs neighbor.

    My advise to African Americans, DO NOT CALL the police on your loved-ones or neighbors.

    I know it should not be like this. But for now, until there are meaningful changes made, calling the police is just not a good idea.

  • R C Dean||

    Preach it, Mama.

    Calling the cops is like pointing a gun at someone. Don't do it unless you are willing to see them dead.

  • Deep Lurker||

    The technical term is "crossing the Godzilla Threshold."

  • Robert||

    Kraken, war elephants, berserkers, the match in the gasoline-soaked room....

  • Jerryskids||

    Calling the cops is like pointing a gun at someone. Don't do it unless you are willing to see them somebody dead, and you don't much care who it is - even you.

  • Plàya Manhattan.||

    You seem a little bit fixated on something.

  • Florida Man||

    Telephones?

  • WTF||

    My advisce to African Americans, DO NOT CALL the police on your loved-ones or neighbors.

    FTFY
  • sarcasmic||

    Yeah. Cops are equal opportunity murderers.

  • Mama La Pinga||

    If it were a white kid in a suburban Cul-de-sac with the same gun, the results would had been different.

    The neighbors would had probably called the kid's mom before calling the cops.
    If the cops were called and told that a kid is outside pointing a toy gun at everyone, the suburban cops would not had killed the kids.

    When white cops confront white kids, the officer sees himself as a kid or his own kids.
    When the same white cops confront black kids, they see a bunch of savage monkeys.
    It's unfortunate but I don't see this changing by asking police commissioners or mayors to resign.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    The neighbors would had probably called the kid's mom before calling the cops.

    Reason contributor Lenore Skenazy shares enough articles here that prove that is probably not the case. Busybodies do not seem to care about race.

  • FreeToFear||

    The difference is suburban cul-de-sac, not the race; this happens as a result of poverty. The poor are particularly vulnerable to the excesses of the state. It just so happens that in our country African Americans are over-represented amongst the poor

  • kbolino||

    The poor are particularly vulnerable to the excesses of the state

    Considering that most of what the state does to/for "the poor" is give them money and "assistance", I find this comment particularly apt.

  • WTF||

    You are clearly ignorant of reality. I think a little research on your part is in order.

  • R C Dean||

    the suburban cops would not had killed the kids.

    The odds are certainly better, but don't forget that the perpetrators of the Waco Biker Massacre were local PD pretty much on par with a suburban town.

  • ||

    The racism angle gets overplayed and really hurts the message that cops, in general, are out of control.

    The real problem is a lack of 'community policing' in large shitty urban areas. Police officers get paid too well to live in those shitty communities, and no longer have to answer to their neighbors for mistakes they make or out-right shitty things they do.

    The other significant problem is that police officers generally won't police themselves. Most police officers don't do these shitty things we read about here, but a majority of police officers do turn a blind eye when they witness others doing those shitty things.

  • Rt. Hon. Judge Woodrow Chipper||

    but a majority of police officers do turn a blind eye when they witness others doing those shitty things.

    The amazing thing is the Chicago video footage where the few cops already on the scene were sitting there until PsychoCop rolled up and pumped 16 rounds into somebody without hesitation. The silence from the other cops already there is deafening.

    When the citizens do start taking up arms against government goons, it will be the Blue Wall Of Silence that caused it, yet not one of the goons will understand.

  • JW||

    By focusing solely on race, you overlook the larger problem, which are the cops and justice system itself.

    Do black guys stand a higher chance of being stopped and shot by cops? Probably. But, this isn't all about you. There are plenty of instances of white kids/guys/women being shot and killed by Officer Pantshitter, for no other reason other than being a convenient target for their cowardice and socioipathy.

    Focus on getting real changes with the LEO/DA Industrial Complex. Everyone benefits.

    And stop electing shitbags to office, solely because of the D after their name. Heal thyself.

  • Robert||

    Both problems exist in parallel, though I agree w you on which is bigger. Neither is negligible, though.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    This isn't a race issue. It's an out of control cops issue.

  • IceTrey||

    I love how the media is completely ignoring the fact that those cops shot at a multi family dwelling full of innocent people because the guy had a bat. There should be one count of attempted murder for everyone in that building.

  • LynchPin1477||

    The person that caused this tragedy is the African-American individual that called the police on their African American family member/Friend.

    No, the person who caused it was the guy who pulled the trigger. Full stop.

  • Lee G||

    I called the sheriff recently because there was a disturbed individual walking in the middle of our neighborhood street muttering to himself and hitting himself while not responding to any attempts to talk to him. At the least, he was at risk of getting run over. He was old enough that dementia was a possibility.

    I did, however, explain in no uncertain terms that he needed help to the dispatcher, and waited for the deputy to show up to intercept him before he spoke to the individual in question. I then stayed at the scene with a cell phone camera until I was certain that things were kosher.

    To their credit, the deputies handled it well and got him home safely. But I'm certain that my obvious filming of the incident had an influence on how things turned out.

  • sarcasmic||

    Round here it is standard procedure to arrest someone for interfering with the police when you whip out their cell phone to film the cops. And nothing else happens.

  • sarcasmic||

    *your*

  • Lee G||

    Do you have a police department with a separate sheriff's department?

  • IceTrey||

    Private security are killed at a much higher rate than cops yet receive no leniency in shooting incidents.

  • Je suis Woodchipper||

    According to this article, Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy McGinty took rather extraordinary measures during the process to fail to secure an indictment.

    http://abcnews.go.com/US/tamir.....d=35979452

    He told the grand jury not to indict. His expert witnesses supported the claims of the officers.

    "Then, Prosecutor McGinty allowed the police officers to take the oath and read prepared statements to the grand jury without answering any questions on cross-examination," the attorneys said. "The prosecutor did not seek a court order compelling the officers to answer questions or holding the officers in contempt if they continued to refuse..."

  • sarcasmic||

    Well, yeah. The prosecutor is the cops' defense attorney.

  • ||

    I can't imagine that anyone thought it would be any different. This grand jury procedure was theater, that is all.

  • Jerryskids||

    It sure would be nice if some enterprising reporter did a little research to find out in what percentage of cases this prosecutor has allowed defense witnesses to testify before - or even attend - a grand jury. A grand jury is sort of a "probable cause" hearing where the prosecutor presents the evidence he believes gives enough cause to believe the defendant committed the crime he's been charged with and therefore should be put on trial. He sure as hell ain't presenting evidence to suggest there's any reason to believe the guy is not guilty. That's why the grand jury hears about the two witnesses who say some guy who looked an awful lot like the defendant committed the crime but the grand jury doesn't hear a word about the other nine witnesses who say it was somebody who doesn't look a thing like the defendant. (And if the prosecutor is like a lot of them, the defense attorney is never going to know that the cops interviewed nine people who fingered somebody other than the defendant, either. The prosecutor is required to turn over any relevant information to the defense but the prosecutor gets to decide what's relevant and how is nine people saying Bill Jones did it in any way relevant to getting Pete Smith convicted for doing it?)

  • Lee G||

    I'm blaming my next killing on poor tactics.

    I can't lose.

  • Brendan||

    NO.
    Your family should rationalize it as poor tactics and then talk about how you weren't explicitly told that that specific action was against procedure.

    -YOU need to talk about how in fear of your life you were.
    -If you get push back, start playing up how you had only a split-second to make that decision.
    -Weave in the notion that you have a right to make it home to your family at the end of your day/night.
    -You may also need to find the right time to talk about how you're human just like everyone else, as well as putting out there that the last thing you wanted to do was kill anyone in addition to how that day will haunt you forever.

    Analyze the circumstances. If the whole situation might make you look bad, keep the focus as narrow as possible on the pieces of the incident that exonerate or absolve you. If too many little pieces make you look bad, start pushing the focus to the totality of the circumstances.

    Worst case scenario you need to offer up your resignation as a way to allow the community to heal.

  • DenverJ||

    I want a license to kill, like James Bond. Is 46 too old to join the Academy?

  • The artist known Dunphy||

    Article begs the question by labeling it a crime but the situations are disanalogous because only we are dispatched to these situations

    In 2011 NYPD responded to thousands of man with a gun and shooting calls and shot 30 people - total - service population 9 mill

    13 NYPD cops shot same year

    All lived . Booya vests

    I was shot at responding to man shooting gun at nightclub

    Others ran away

    We ran towards danger. Guy missed me by 3 ft. Billet hole in wall proved that

    I did NOT shoot because people were running between me and him

    Cop does NOT shoot bad guy gets no press
    Nor did my getting shot at

    Selection bias and lighthouse fallacy skews perception

    I had to come to work a few years back to find my best friend had just been shot and killed

    How many reasonoids have dealt with that?

    3 guys in my unit were shot (lived) on a warrant I was called off of last minute

    In the rice case, the responding officers were not informed of the call referencing it was possibly a toy

    I had a guy pull w gun on me while we were standing on a bridge

    I thought it was probably a toy

    Until he shot himself in the head

    Rices gun - look at the photos. Looked very real

    Airsoft

    I had a call of a handgun lying on the side of the road

    RP was standing a yard away when I arrived

    We both thought it was a gun

  • IceTrey||

    That's not the problem. The problem is when cops obviously do something wrong they are not held accountable. Do you report your colleagues every time they break the rules or do you maintain the thin blue line?

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    Pig wants kudos for doing his job.

    Pig wants to make excuses for other pigs doing their job poorly.

    Pig puts pigs above those it's his job to protect.

    Pig whines about how scary the job he volunteered for is (when it's consistently not even in the top 10 most dangerous jobs, and you never hear the top 10 whining).

    Pig is immersed in a corrupt and vile culture.

    Pig haz a sad that people call him on his bullshit.

  • ||

    "What we see with Tamir Rice—and what we’ve seen in shootings across the country—is what happens when the officer’s safety supercedes the obligation to accept risk. If “going home” is what matters—and risk is unacceptable—then the instant use of lethal force makes sense. It’s the only thing that guarantees complete safety from harm.

    It’s also antithetical to the call to “serve and protect.” But it’s the new norm."

    If this be the new norm then don't be surprised when citizens start to hit back because it's not acceptable.

  • The artist known Dunphy||

    As noted above we make a no shoot decision even when being shot at - no press reports

    I tackle a suicidal woman with knife trying to kill herself vs shooting her - no press report

    You get a totally skewed version of reality because you never see or hear about those incidents

    If I had shot back and hit a bar patron in the way - you would have

    When there are no reports on the hundreds of inarguably correct and in many cases valorous and selfless decisions we make but rice is front page news- you think cops routinely fuck up, assuming arguendo rice was a fuck up - if not rising to criminal behavior

    It's like cops who think drug users are all criminals Becauee when people use meth etc but don't burglarize or prowl - they are unknown To us usually

    Reason anticop bigots fall prey to lighthouse fallacy, selection bias etc

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    As noted above we make a no shoot decision even when being shot at - no press reports

    I tackle a suicidal woman with knife trying to kill herself vs shooting her - no press report

    ...

    When there are no reports on the hundreds of inarguably correct and in many cases valorous and selfless decisions we make but rice is front page news- you think cops routinely fuck up, assuming arguendo rice was a fuck up - if not rising to criminal behavior

    You want attaboys for doing what the fuck you're paid to do? NOT shooting someone is the fucking rule, not the exception.

    Tell ya what, pig, I'll start giving out attaboys when you start holding each other to the level of accountability you hold the average citizen to.

  • retiredfire||

    Bravely spoken.

  • Some Engineer||

    we make a no shoot decision even when being shot at - no press reports

    I tackle a suicidal woman with knife trying to kill herself vs shooting her - no press report

    You don't get press for doing your job.

    I make a great design, have no issues through construction, everything works = no press. My building falls down? Press.

  • The artist known Dunphy||

    If we have a license to kill (which is dumb histrionics) let's remember most cops shoot Zero people in a 20+ yr career

    (Continued post...)

    Until I picked it up and found out it was plastic gun

    I'm an instructor

    He was a vet with a CCW who was carrying a handgun and very familiar

    Neither of us knew it was fake until I picked it up

    I don't agree with the non indictment but the officer has RIGHTS

    the jury of citizens is the finder of fact and they didn't indict

    They are privy to all
    The admissible evidence

    We are not

    Reasonoids hate civil rights and due process when it gives the wrong results as in the rice case

    Fair weather constitutionalism

    How typical

  • LynchPin1477||

    They are privy to all
    The admissible evidence

    Um, no, they are privy to the evidence the prosecutor wants to admit, and in this case the prosecutor was acting like a defense attorney.

    Good for you and the cops who don't shoot innocent people. Your good behavior doesn't excuse this bad behavior. And it's the bad behavior that is at issue here.

  • R C Dean||

    Reasonoids hate civil rights and due process when it gives the wrong results as in the rice case

    Its not justice or due process unless its the same process for everyone.

    Cops get a very different process than anyone else. Objecting to this is not "hating" due process, its trying to protect due process against being undermined and negated by special treatment for favored classes.

    Guess what? Nobody else gets a pass for doing their job right 100 times, when doing it wrong one time gets somebody killed. No matter how many times I stop at a red light, I'm going to jail if I run it and kill someone.

    So stop acting like you build up credits in your Thug Karma Account every time you don't kill somebody, until you have enough Thug Karma credits to kill somebody and walk.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    I've taken off and landed thousands of times without incident...I shouldn't be held accountable when, through my own negligence, I crash one here and there. /Dunphy pilot

    I've performed thousands of surgeries without incident. I shouldn't be accountable for occasionally amputating the wrong leg. /Dunphy surgeon

    I've stopped at that red light thousands of times. I shouldn't be accountable running down little Sally the one time I didn't. /Dunphy driver

  • ||

    I think you nailed things above.

  • IceTrey||

    For all we know he avoided charges by one vote. Plus both cops were able to make statements with no cross examination. No civilian ever gets to do that.

  • Mama La Pinga||

    The artist known Dunphy,

    Can you at admit that this particular shooting, the officer simply drove up and shot.
    The officer didn't yell out "Stop Drop the Gun" three times as he admitted.

    Also, can you admit that slowing down the Video and not showing the Real-Time Video to a Grand Jury is nothing more than the DA testifying and representing the Police.

    It doesn't matter what the Video shows in slow motion. The attending officers didn't see the situation in slow motion. They saw it in real time.

  • Mama La Pinga||

    and to be clear, in real-time, the world sees the officers driving up and shooting within 2 seconds.

  • IceTrey||

    To me it looks like he's lifting his shirt not even pulling out the gun.
    Also Ohio is an open carry state so the mere sight of a gun should not be justfication to shoot someone.

  • ||

    The situation is even worse than stated. Not only do the police get to kill this young man out of "fear", but they also get to prevent others from ministering to him afterwards. To me that is yet ANOTHER murder charge they deserve. Okay so you shot this boy because you're a pussy, now what is your excuse for preventing his mother from helping him, or for doing NOTHING to try and save his life? DISGUSTING

  • Mama La Pinga||

    It is simply 'par for the course' for police officers to shoot first, ask questions later, go on a paid vacation while his partners figure out a way not to hold the offending officer responsible, and to ultimately find no fault in the shooting.

    This happens regardless of the circumstances.

    I'm afraid we in America have to get use to it because no march on washingting, no protesting in front of Macy's, no demanding that the Mayor/Commissioner/President resign will change things.

    The people in power that have very little police contact are very happy that the Regular Joe is subjected to Police Brutality and Criminal Negligence with FULL IMPUNITY from the STATE.

  • J_West||

    To some degree, you are getting what you demanded. Police officers are holding back on confronting criminals, especially if perpetrators are "people of color." The result is crime rates are going up and public safety is going down. Case in point are the numerous reported flashmob attacks at shopping malls over Christmas, and the thuggery by Black Lives Matter "activists" in the streets and on campuses. We have seen how the Baltimore city government held back the police during the recent rioting.

    This should lead to some interesting situations. If the cops are holding back, more armed citizens will find themselves shooting criminals in the course of attacks...including the famous unarmed teens.

  • Some Engineer||

    FBI crime stats were released on 9/28, and they disagree with you:

    the 2014 edition of its annual report Crime in the United States... This latest report reveals that the estimated number of violent crimes ... during 2014 decreased 0.2 percent when compared with 2013 data. And the estimated number of property crimes decreased 4.3 percent from 2013 levels.
  • Muzzled Woodchipper||

    BUT WAR ON COPS!!!

  • DenverJ||

    Police officers are holding back on confronting criminals, especially if perpetrators are "people of color." The result is crime rates are going up and public safety is going down.

    Bullshit. First, correlation does not equal causality. Second, if the cops are afraid of murdering people because it might spark protests, that seems ok to me.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    The result is crime rates are going up and public safety is going down

    [Citation Required]

    Oh, wait...it's bullshit.

    Next time you post here and make claims...bring some evidence to support them.

  • Henry Baker||

    The punks of the 60s pegged police perfectly as pigs with guns and badges. It was about the only thing those doped-up cretins ever got right.

  • Chrxtoph3r||

    I get that cops get the benefit of the doubt.

    I get that not all cops are trained properly and that some (less than 1% of the million some odd law enforcement officers NOT shooting anybody) should not be in law enforcement.

    But, this is specific to the event. They all are.

    I watched the video.

    That CHILD got up...marched towards the cops

    that had JUST GOT THERE...

    And raised what appeared to be a weapon.

    Stupid, dumb ass.

    WHERE ARE HIS PARENTS?

    WHO RAISED HIM TO BE THAT STUPID???

    WHO WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR HIS EDUCATION?????

    Stupid idiots.

    Retarded.

    Complicit.

    COPS ARE NOT YOUR PARENTS!!!

    Do STUPID shit with a cop and get killed.

    Period.

    They guard us while we sleep.

    Police yourselves.

    Hold accountable yourselves.

    Be responsible yourselves.

    YOURSELVES!

    Stop being violent, hostile, dangerous and stupid.

  • woodNfish||

    Fuck you, Tamir Rice was 12 years old you copsucking dirt bag.

  • block30||

    Glad to see Justin Amash get some coverage. I want to see more articles about him...!

  • woodNfish||

    First of all the idea that cops are here "to serve and protect" is pure bullshit. They are here to enforce the law. They don't do that very well, and often break the law while doing it. That doesn't even include the many cops who are really nothing more than criminals with badges.

    The second problem with this article is the authors belief that cops are well trained. They aren't. The average cop is basically a moron and a majority of them are little more than thugs with badges.

  • woodNfish||

    "...they are trained to successfully navigate tense situations: it’s literally their job to go to great lengths to keep people alive." - Robby Soave

    Put down the koolaid Robby. Time to grow up.

  • JFB76||

    For the first time in remembrance I disagree with Rep Amash. I believe the action was justified for either an officer or citizen. Anyone who points what spears to be a firearm at an office or citizen, real or similar toy, is apparently threatening deadly Worcester and can legitimately be met with the same.
    I can find no blame or malice by the officers in this incident. Sadly the foolishness of this young man caused his demise, his actions cause a justified response.

  • Some Engineer||

    I didn't see the kid point anything at anybody.

    In the 2 seconds between the arrival of the police and his death, he didn't have any chance to do so.

  • Win Bear||

    He didn't have to be pointing the gun at anyone at that very moment in order for the use of deadly force to be justified. And those rules are similar for police and civilians. Yes, civilians also get away with killing people who already to be dangerous but afterwards turn out not to be.

  • Reflections||

    The police thanks to police union contracts have always operated as armed militias. Police in cities all over the nation have "special immunity" in the contract to kill any one for any reason and receive paid vacations courtesy of the tax payers. I repeat the police know that will not face any charges and are above the law. Now this can change only if the police unions are dissolved. The tax payers nationwide have spent well over a BILLION dollars to settle law suites due to police murder and other criminal activity. It's win win for the police. Crony Capitalism. Remember most of these cities are run by elected democrats who support murder against african americans. So these democrats need to be replaced.

  • Win Bear||

    The premise is wrong: cops can use deadly force for reasons other than self defense. And similar rules apply for civilians. Take the Pearis case for example.

    Also, policing is a local matter. Cleveland is an extremely violent city. Local residents may be quite rational in wanting a police force that is very aggressive, even if that results in more deaths of innocents at the hands of police.

    It sucks that Rice got shot. But how to deal with that should be up to the people of Cleveland alone. I'd advise then to fire the officers responsible, to make some charges such, and to rethink their approach to policing, but then I don't have to live there. Actually, what I'd really advise them is to move somewhere else.

  • Policepiper||

    First off this was a TRAGEDY of TRAGEDIES.... mistakes were made on many points...starting with the lack of information having been dispatched to the responding officers, the tactical deployment of the police officers vehicle...having said that ...all tragedies do not rise to the level of criminality and criminal behavior......Of course "cops deserve no more" nor any less leniency than any other citizen .....perhaps like a defense attorney charged for crimes against the state....the point being exactly what? A Grand Jury No Bills the officer(s) in this case as in Ferguson wherein the fallacy of "Hands up don't shoot was "conceived", yet when the "facts and circumstances" are presented in a legitimate court proceeding it somehow becomes aborted into a racial and bigoted finding. My deepest condolences to the Rice family, the officer for the cross he will now bear for the rest of his life, the Cleveland community and those that wish that hate will and lack of objectivity will rule.

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