Join Date: December 26, 2004
Location: Nashijuana, TN
8 years, started working in a small rural county S.O. of 19,000 total population, moved up to a large city PD in the Atlanta Metro area, total city/county population 119,000, I now work for my home county S.O. which has a population combined city and county of around 45,000.
My order of preservations goes like this,
My life/well being
My partner’s life/well being
My partner’s paycheck
Your (the public) @$$
Sorry it goes that way but again I don’t get paid to fight, my state certification says peace officer not ball buster.
I am currently writing a paper for the Georgia Police Academy on the application of deadly force and it’s justification, which will be submitted to POST for inclusion into the basic Peace Officers Training Curriculum. I plan on expanding this into a full 24 hour lecture in about 2 years once the total basic mandate course is expanded allowing me the time within the state required training hours.
This module will cover both armed and unarmed attackers and will be well founded in current case law as well as GA law as the General Counsel for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation interprets it.
Most of my opinions about deadly force against an unarmed attacker have come from those court rulings and not surprisingly make good sense. The courts tend to agree that in the face of uncertainty or overwhelming odds such as an unarmed attacker who without question poses a substantial threat to your ability to fend off an attack because of size disparity or a perceived ability to fight such as an attempt to employ a martial arts or a display of the same in your presence, which places you in fear of great bodily harm due to your in ability to counter such threats you can use deadly force.
You are either missing or circling deliberately the whole crux of the argument, which was use of force vs. street fighting and the level of force introduced at the beginning was deadly, I began to inject other options into the basis of the argument, while not trying to stray from the original topic.
The gun option
As for using other means that too would depend on the totality of the situation, was this initially a peaceful contact, which began to escalate up the R.A.M. chain or was it full blown charge towards me once the cars come to a stop and his door flies open, he barrels out full bore at me, giving me little to no time to even think about assessing the threat, just reaction.
If you recall from you basic training you should know that action is three to five as fast as reaction even with the most seasoned of gunfighters.
Remember I hope you recall from your police academy days that you are only required by law to act upon the facts as they exist at the time, if you see some 250 pound 6 foot tall redneck brute clear the cab of his pickup charging towards you while you are still calling out the stop, any reasonable man would have to assume he was not running up to you to give you a kiss and thank you for pulling him over.
Same would apply to a little old lady exiting the car screaming and pointing a small hair dryer at you, it’s 2AM you have been on patrol 10 hours, yet to eat or take a break, it’s dark, your tired and you make a traffic stop on a lonely stretch of highway, before you can get out of the car crazy old lady roars out of the car pointing this black object at with both hands in a manor any half intelligent person would associate with holding a gun while firing.
You shoot, killing her, finding out later she only held a small compact hair dryer.
In 1998 an Ohio State Trooper shot and killed a man who exited his car quickly and began reaching to his right side under his jacket drawing an object out moving as if he was bringing it to bear on the Trooper.
The object was a cellphone, the man died at the scene from multiple gunshots as well as his young daughter who was sitting in the rear seat, when a round entered the back glass and struck her in the head.
Shooting was ruled justified and upheld all the way to the US Supreme Court.
A small framed Female Dallas PD officer shot and killed an unarmed football player after he nutted up on a traffic stop, stating he was going to kill the officer then charging her.
The man was well over 200 pounds and in excellent shape the officer was about 505 and 100 pounds soaking wet.
A Florida State Trooper shot and killed two men who exited their on a traffic stop after being told to remain in the vehicle many times, both men got out stood still for a few seconds clearly sizing up the officer and communicating back and forth over the car, Trooper calls for backup, both began to advance, Trooper yells for them to stop, both go from a walk to a full charge, Trooper emptied his handgun into both killing them at the scene.
In Georgia about 12 years ago a small town PD officer pulled over a drunk one night, had him out of the vehicle doing SFS on him, the man became physical with the officer and actually slapped the officer then began to run to his truck, the officer gave chase grabbed the guy who was trying to grab something out of the truck, the officer could not tell what he was trying to get, officer fell back about 5 steps ordered the man to stop, the man looked back at him, yelled something unintelligible on the film, then began moving as if he was trying to reach for something, officer shot him, killing him.
The investigation concluded the man had grabbed a seat belt inside the truck and was attempting to buckle it back together.
Ruled justified, officer was in reasonable fear of his life due to the unknown threat which may have been hidden from view inside the truck, the officer was anticipating the man to produce a gun or other weapon, based on his training and knowledge of stops and the extremely unusual actions of the suspect.
There are over 63,000 cases listed on the West Law Server dating back over 80 years involving deadly force against unarmed attackers, now not all of these resulted in death, but the level of force used met the threshold of deadly force.
You can go over there and give peace a chance, I'll stay here and cover you in case it doesn't work out.