For clarification: "The Conscience and Justice Council (CJC) is comprised of Regional Conference Public Affairs and Religious Liberty (PARL) Directors, regional representatives for the North Pacific and Pacific Union Conferences of Seventh-day Adventists, and human rights and religious freedom experts in serving churches across the United States of America. The council seeks to equip and empower anyone interested in public affairs and religious liberty through the practical application of the Bible."
If you are a fugitive with an open arrest warrant, turn yourself in.
If there is a restraining order against you, respect it.
If stopped by police, be polite.
If told to put your hands against the car, do so.
If told to lie down on the ground, do it.
Never physically struggle with a police officer, much less violently.
If a situation escalates to the point where multiple police officers find it necessary to employ Tasers against you, take it as a hint that you should comply.
Never reach for a weapon.
If told to drop your weapon, do it.
If Blake had followed any one of these points, he would have finished his day peacefully. Is it so hard? I wish the council would have as much sympathy for the police who wish for uneventful days rather than life changing confrontations with criminals leading to their public condemnation, legal jeopardy, and possible career ending outcomes pressed by pandering politicians and judgmental armchair quarterbacks such as those who wrote this open letter.
"…judgmental armchair quarterbacks such as those who wrote this open letter…"
I am not responding to you as a law enforcement expert or a civil rights spokesperson. For purposes of this response think of me as an “average person” I am also an informed and educated senior a retired grandparent and a citizen with a good deal of "common sense ".
I was taken aback at your “points” and “advice” that you would give your children and others as a result of the Jacob Blake shooting. Here are some ideas YOU may want to consider:
In any domestic dispute a calm demeanor and focus will go a long ways in diffusing a situation.
Have an incremental approach to problem solving. If innocent children are in the middle of it all then look out for their safety first.
Four policemen with training, Two tazers and each of the four policemen with firearms, should be able to stop one individual who may or may not have had a knife in the floor of the car.
The result at close range of shooting someone ONCE at such close range in the back should have been enough…but apparently the policeman had to do it a second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh time. Why? Not only was this excessive but his colleagues were in very close proximity and again there were innocent children in the car!
Do you really want to display your cruelty and insensitivity by then shackling-handcuffing a nearly dead and incapacitated person to their bed?
Consider this statement:
“Jacob Blake was shot in the back seven times in front of his children,” Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes said in a press conference Monday. “This wasn’t an accident. This wasn’t bad police work. This felt like some sort of vendetta being taken out on a member of our community. The officer’s deadly actions attempted to take a person’s life in broad daylight.”
bartwillruth you should be more aware of the context before rendering premature judgments, remember “A text without it’s context is a pretext”.
It is interesting that you didn’t acknowledge ANY of the points I made that if followed, would have kept the encounter peaceful. But I will address yours.
We will see the body-cam footage eventually, but I will predict that the police said something to the effect of “Sir, please step out of the car” followed by “Place your hands on the car.” At which point Blake refused and became belligerent. Keep in mind that the police were responding to a 911 emergency call in which they were informed that the subject had outstanding arrest warrants and was armed and potentially violent. This was not a random traffic stop. Maximum vigilance was required. It can be somewhat challenging to remain calm and incremental when a perp places one of the cops in a headlock though.
Yes, children and the suspect needed to be separated, and it seems that they were since he was out of the car.
Yes, two Tasers should have been able to stop Blake, but they didn’t. It is likely that this is because he was under the influence of a psychoactive drug. Yes, officers with pistols should have been able to stop him, and they eventually did. Remember, he continued to resist even after they had pistols drawn.
You assume one shot should have been enough, but I believe you have that opinion because of movie depictions of someone falling after one shot. This can’t be assumed by the police, especially when the suspect might under the influence. Frequently a suspect receiving a center mass shot can continue to fight for some period of time. Police training ALWAYS teaches them that if lethal force becomes necessary, that they should double-tap at a minimum (two shots). Furthermore, they are taught to keep firing until the suspect is neutralized and unable to continue. This is for the safety of both the police and innocents in proximity. Shooting to wound was a popularized depiction by the Lone Ranger or Roy Rogers, but when a situation calling for lethal force becomes necessary in the real world of law enforcement, lethal force is authorized.
Handcuffing a violent offender in the hospital is standard operating procedure, even if he is unconscious. Failing to do so would result in disciplinary action. He has since been uncuffed.
The governor’s feelings are quite irrelevant and inflamed the situation (“This felt like some sort of vendetta”). He jumped to an unwarranted conclusion and attempted to divine motives. He should have simply stated that there would be an investigation after which all findings would be released.
I stand by my advice which comes down to “Obey the law. Follow police instructions. Don’t violently resist them. Don’t reach for a weapon. Drop the weapon when ordered to.” It really isn’t so much to ask.
If the Police can make decisions like that, executing people at will, should the Courts be closed and the judges just sent home?
I see nobody defending the guy. There is no defense for his behavior. But, I hope there won’t be any defense for his killer(s) either! His crime(s) are not punishable with the death penalty in Court. Or, is the Police above the Courts now? Are you OK with that???
From now on, when I see any police activity around me, I will immediately pull my PHONE on them. The video may help justice to make some progress. The video may end up in the news. Let’s police the Police, making sure they do only what they are paid for!!!
I would ask, Is it reasonable to suggest that the rules of the court and possible legal penalties apply as limits when a suspect is violent, armed, and fighting the police? Do police have the right to self defense? If so, at what point is lethal force justified? Who else besides the law enforcement at the scene could make that determination? Would you have the police disarmed?
Of course the police are not above the courts, but the courts only have jurisdiction after the events in question. They cannot intervene in live events.
The courts will now have jurisdiction following an investigation and if and when charges are brought.
The more video we can get on these kinds of encounters, the better. They are invaluable in after-the-fact reviews.
Truth be told, anyone resisting arrest will likely find themselves on the wrong end of a gun. Resistance, regardless of skin color, state of mind, or belief system, is likely to get hurt or worse yet, killed. All should have learned this by the time they are a teenager.
The law officer also failed by shooting in the manner that he did. In the rush of the moment he did finally control the situation and that is where the debate lies. Regardless, nothing that took place justifies hurting others, their property, or their livelihood in response to the shooting.
Last night, just an hour south of the events of Kenosha, during a traffic stop in Chicago by two police officers, a suspect refused to exit the vehicle and scuffled with the cops. He reached/moved into the back seat and shot both officers, one with life threatening injuries. They couldn’t see what he was reaching for before being shot.
The Chicago Sun Times this morning stated "The officers broke the windows after the suspect, who appeared to have moved from the front seat to the back seat, refused to get out of the car, Brown said, and a struggle ensued.
During the struggle, the suspect shot both officers. A third officer arrived and returned fire, hitting the suspect, the superintendent said.
Brown said the injured officers were “wearing body cams and it’s being reviewed.”
George, this is an excellent example of what can happen in such an incident. It happens fast and is unpredictable. Being a police officer confronting violent offenders is extremely dangerous and can be life threatening. This situation is not unlike the Blake incident at all. As Blake reached down to the floorboard, the police officer’s view was blocked by Blake’s body. Whatever he was reaching for presented a clear and present danger.
We don’t yet know the race of the perp or of the officers, and it is irrelevant. But if the officers had shot first and they had been white while the suspect was black, we would have more riots. The race pimps would be outraged once again, happy to have one more pretext to justify their rage. Do you suppose that this incident will get even 1% of the coverage that the Blake event received? Why? Is there an agenda at work here?
Barth, I get what you are saying. Of course it’s a dangerous job, etc. But there are cases (so many of them now, too many) in which a video shows exactly what happened, and some actions are inexcusable, unprofessional, unjustifiable.
In the “seven-shot” case, I can’t guess why it happened. What about one shot in the butt, ot the leg? That’s what I would do IF really necessary and appropriate due to an imminent danger.
That which you suggest is contrary to all police training. If lethal force is necessitated, they are trained to make lethal shots and to keep firing until the suspect goes down. They are never told to shoot to wound. Why? A wounded suspect can still fire a weapon or stab with a knife; this is the case even if the wound would be extremely serious. Criminals under the influence of some drugs can and do continue to fight for a time even after having been shot center mass. Once the line has been crossed where lethal force is appropriate, it is to be exercised to the max until the threat is neutralized. Did the Chicago cops show too much restraint? Should they have engaged lethal force before they could be shot? Were they hesitant due to the current climate?
The open question in Blake’s case is whether that line had been crossed. We should wait for the investigation, but my personal opinion is that it had been based on what I know so far.
I think this has been one of the problems. It can give a false narrative of the situation if only portions are released. George, why would a person of your high intellect make such a statement as police executing at will. I don’t think any of these deaths were deliberately intentional by the police, but it happened in the end because the suspects brazenly engaged in resisting the police.
Tom, I am glad you’ve noticed this fact… I like especially the “high”… LOL
Look, we just see this issue in different ways, it’s all. When I see a cop kneeling on a person’s neck for ca. 8 minutes until the person is dead; when I see a cop shooting 3 + 4 bullets on the back of a person;
when I hear that cops broke in an apartment at night and just killed a woman who was sleeping; when I see many other similar, fatal
or abusive cases…, my intelligence tells me that it was unnecessary, excessive use of force - lethal force. And it was wrong.
So, you should reconsider your opinion on my intelligence, because this is what I am getting from my intelligence; therefore, my intelligence may not be as “high” as you thought…