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Old October 8, 2005, 09:41 AM   #1
MidKnight
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What would you do if you witness police shooting...?

Lets say I'm CCW and walking down the street after work one day. Now lets say I see police doing something routine (like a traffic stop) and things go south. The BG pulls weapon and opens fire on the cop.

Do you call 911 and chill behind a parked car or do you unholster and try to fire on the BG?

If you decided to unholster, it is possible that the cop could here your shots and turn on YOU!! But, if you duck for cover and the cops gets shot and the BG gets away, it'd be hard to live with that.

So what would you do?
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Old October 8, 2005, 10:20 AM   #2
Bravo25
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If possible try to make contact with the officer, explain yourself, and ask if he wants help. If possible try to take cover close to the cop. If none of the other are options take cover unholster your weapon, and prepare to cover the BG attempting to keep your weapon out of sight, without revealing youir position, or situation. Keep in mind though that distracting the officer at this critical juncture could result in a catastrophy.
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Old October 8, 2005, 10:24 AM   #3
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Stay out of the situation. You aren't back up. Call 911. "helping" would most likely get you shot by the officer or another officer arriving on the scene who has no clue who you are.
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Old October 8, 2005, 10:50 AM   #4
Rob P.
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Get down, stay down, find a hole to crawl into, and forget the illusion of being a hero. The officer has a radio and backup is probably already on the way. Getting involved is a VERY bad idea.
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Old October 8, 2005, 11:04 AM   #5
Glenn E. Meyer
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Not really enough info. If the officer has not been hit, has taken cover - I agree with caution. I wouldn't enter the fire fight.

If the officer has been hit and clearly incapacitated, then demanding on your decision making you might want to help him.

I've thought about because of a fairly well known case in San Antonio. A SWAT officer was patrolling in a apt. complex very near our house. He was looking for burglars. Well, he found one, who disarmed him (no need for a bug - huh?) and shot him dead.

If I witnessed the officer being disarmed, I might very well help him.

Joining in an ongoing firefight - probably pass on that.
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Old October 8, 2005, 11:20 AM   #6
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Depends.

Large city/town?

Small town?

How many people on the street, what is cover like/around, do you have cell service/phone, etc..

To vague to comment really.

I would probably duck behind cover, call on cell, and be a good witness. Now the only thing that may prompt me to unholster and try to fire is if the LEO is hit and the BG is starting to walk over to do an excecution type shot.

The only reason that this is much different then the last one that we "what if'd" in is that the LEO is:

1. Armed
2. Has a radio to call for backup
3. If backup is on the way, you could be mistaken for a BG and fired upon once they get there.

Now if the LEO is hit and the BG just drives off, I will already have taken note of all the information that I could and I would go over to offer assistance to the LEO but I would approach the LEO in such a way that he/she can see that I am unarmed and there to render aid if needed. (remember, he/she is still armed, fazed, hurt, and may mistake you for the BG if you run up on the LEO).

Their lives are just as important as everyone else's but you have to take in all the variables that may be present.

Now, in a small town with a small force, the answer would be different.

Wayne
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Old October 8, 2005, 11:30 AM   #7
Wildalaska
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Hmmmm....since I usually wear body armour, and carry an assault carbine as well as my CCW, 6 mags, a back up gun, and soap on a rope, I draw my primary sidearm and grab the carbine and start shooting. I dont worry about cops shooting me since I always wear a black windbreaker with pull down panels. Under the panels in big yellow letters instead of the word police are the words "HEROIC ARMED CITIZEN"...

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Old October 8, 2005, 11:31 AM   #8
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Wild, don't ya have a CCW badge too?
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Old October 8, 2005, 11:59 AM   #9
MidKnight
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Thanks for all the replies.

I too would take cover and be the witness. That is unless the LEO was incapacitated and the BG was going in for kill or turned his gun on innocent bystanders.

But definately stay out of it if AT ALL POSSIBLE because you're right, back up for the LEO will only see some guy on the street weilding a gun.
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Old October 8, 2005, 12:50 PM   #10
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If the Officer is not injured I would hole up and wait till back up comes. Then let them know I was a Witness. The Officer has his hands full already without trying to figure out who the second guy is.
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Old October 8, 2005, 12:58 PM   #11
Wildalaska
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Quote:
Wild, don't ya have a CCW badge too?
Dang I lost it when SWMBO threw out my box with that badge, my Decoder Ring and propellor beanie, I'll just order one out of the back of some tacky magazine


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Old October 8, 2005, 01:21 PM   #12
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Old October 8, 2005, 01:29 PM   #13
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1. Don't get shot.

2. Stay out of it if the cops are winning. You'll thank yourself later.

3. If the cops are losing, let your conscience and common sense be your guide. Just remember that 'backup' may arrive while you're bussin' caps, and start shooting at everybody who has guns, and don't look like a cop.

4. When it's over, give a statement like everybody else. Plan on going to court a whole bunch.

5. Don't get shot.
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Old October 8, 2005, 01:46 PM   #14
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Not sure why so many people with a firearm and a permit to carry want to vault themselves into their night job as The Punisher.

Me? I'm gonna duck and cover and let the police, who are paid, trained, and prepared (well, mostly) do their job.
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Old October 8, 2005, 02:25 PM   #15
Dust_Devil
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Like many here that replied here, it would depend on the situation.
I first would want to find cover and study the situation before I would jump in right away and start firing.
Can I keep myself covered without worrying about the BG shooting in my direction?
Am I close enough to the police officer to ask him if I can/should assist?
Are there innocent and unarmed bystanders, such as children, in the area where I would feel I would want to protect them from the BG if the police is having a hard time bringing the BG down?
Will my shots towards the BG be clear of not hitting anyone else if my shots were to miss?
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Old October 8, 2005, 03:12 PM   #16
stratus
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Yeah this is a toughie (as most of these situations tend to be, I think we're beginning to notice a pattern of the inherent complexity of these "to interfere or not to interfere" scenarios).

First of all, this is an emotionally tough decision for me, there are very few things that make me angrier than a cop killer (or someone who is firing on a cop, that would obviously make the person an aspiring cop killer).

It would suck, as many people have already pointed out, to get shot by the very officer you were trying to help in the first place.

I think dynamicism would be important in the situation. If you are going to help the officer and he has not already been incapacitated, you'd have to somehow get the message across to him that you were on his side. But how the hell do you do that without getting in the line of fire...

I don't know. In this scenario, every problem I attempt to solve seems to bring up two more.
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Old October 8, 2005, 09:26 PM   #17
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This has a feel of too many TV shows being watched

Stay out of it
Nuff said
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Old October 9, 2005, 06:52 AM   #18
Bravo25
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Quote:
Not sure why so many people with a firearm and a permit to carry want to vault themselves into their night job as The Punisher.

Me? I'm gonna duck and cover and let the police, who are paid, trained, and prepared (well, mostly) do their job.
No one here is wandering the streets at night, looking to become vigiallanties. Ok maybe a couple, but this is just one of those things that goes against my grain.
The same as if the neighborhood is bad, move out.
If crime is rampant, leave.
Don't get involved, Don't do anything, Don't help. It isn't your job.
What is your DUTY? As a citizen? When is enough, enough?
The police aren't going to make our neighborhoods, and streets safe. It isn't their job any longer. Andy, and Mayberry are long gone. The role of the police is reactive at best, and proactive when time, and resources allow.

This is the same process that brought about the teaching of yelling "fire" instead of help. You yell "help" and everyone ignores it because it doesn't involve them. You yell "FIRE", and people instinctively want to know if their butt is going to get torched so they pay attention.

Doing nothing is getting nothing done, and nothing getting done is why the crime is so prosperous. I have many times spoke with a LEO on dark street by himslef at a car stop shown my credintials, and asked if he was alright, or would like some help.

We have become a nation so willing look the other way, and not get involved that we have already surrendered ourselves over to those that wield power (in whatever form) over us. Why because we are afraid of getting hurt, being sued, losing our jobs, and losing our STUFF that we have collected. Without freedom, all of that "stuff" is pretty much useless!

Sorry, Off my soapbox now.
Nothing else to see here, move along please.
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If more laws restricting our rights will make us free from harm, why aren't we safe yet? We are only less free.

When faced with impossible overwhelming odds, prudance would dictate the only thing left is to figure out what is possible, and to do it.

Punishment for all crimes should increase until the recitivism rate approaches zero.
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Old October 9, 2005, 07:19 AM   #19
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There's a small-town vs. big-city difference, too.

Almost all the LEOs I know personally do solo patrol in rural districts. Backup may be a long time away for these guys, when it exists at all. Waiting for professional backup is great for a city cop, who's going to wait only a few moments, but that might be a lousy plan for a country cop who might literally wait for the rest of his life for another LEO to arrive on scene.

Part of being a good citizen in a rural area is keeping one eye out for the local police. But these are guys you know personally and who know you. It's not the same thing as jumping into an armed stranger's line of fire and yelling, "Hey, I'm on your side!"

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Old October 9, 2005, 02:52 PM   #20
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You start shooting, the cops might shoot back at you
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Old October 9, 2005, 03:00 PM   #21
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Exactly, the cops might start shooting back. And then what? You get killed. Or maybe, better yet, maybe you defend yourself and start shooting at the cop too, to save your own life? Explain that one in court, Einsteins. Assuming they take you alive.

Good grief. If the thought of jumping in to help the cops makes you excited and a grin forms on your lips, please go to the phone right now, call your local PD and have them come and pick up all of your guns and ammo. You are a danger to yourself and I don't feel like paying taxes to support your surviving family.
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Old October 9, 2005, 03:08 PM   #22
blume357
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First I would take cover and try to see what happens. You've already witnessed something and so are obligated to stay and fill out forms and make statements. If it becomes apparent that the LEO or someone elses life is in danger... that is when decisions must be made. Yes, you may get shot by another cop.... life is tough and dangerous sometime.
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Old October 9, 2005, 03:31 PM   #23
USP45usp
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JSP,

I'm sure that no one here is grinning to jump in and try to become Mr. Hero. Most are just expressing that a human life is at stake and that most will try to be good witnesses but if the chips are down for the LEO, that maybe, just maybe, helping out another is warrented.

Could anyone here, with the tools needed (firearms), actually just sit back and witness a killing instead of using the tools that they have to help?

Would anyone here do that? To just say to themselves, I did right, I was a good witness and that is all that I needed to do and so that is all I did.

Can you justify it to yourself that you just witnessed a cold bloodied murder, you had the tools on you to make a difference, and you just sat there and did nothing.

Have we gotten to the point in our humanity that we could just turn our heads at such a sight and continue on when we had the tools to maybe help out our fellow brother or sister in need.

Have we sunk so far down that anothers life is worthless when we have the tools to help in such a situation and refuse to use them.

Wayne
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Old October 9, 2005, 03:41 PM   #24
jsp98m3
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Ever watch COPS on tv?

The cops don't look like they are likely to be calm enough to notice that you, a un-uniformed civilian, are on their side.

I tell you this, if you ever try to help me in that situation, I'll assume you are a bad guy and send 3 right at you.

You carry to protect yourself from a one in a million situation. By intervening, you turn a one in a million situation into about a one in two situation that a well trained professional will attempt to kill you. And the totally clueless backup cops that will arrive in seconds will definitely shoot you.

The initial report of a traffic stop will not mention volunteer militia. So the backup assumes everyone involved is on the perpetrators side.

The secondary "shots fired" radio transmission will not probably include an accurate description of the only people that should be shot on arrival.
You are not trained and I can guarantee that for the length of the interaction all of the people with guns, bad guys, first cop and all of the back-up will assume that you are a danger. So you will have at least 3 people, maybe dozens ready to blow your ass away.

Get in your car, seek cover and call 911 on your tactically muted cell phone.
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Old October 9, 2005, 04:11 PM   #25
USP45usp
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JSP,

I don't know if you are an LEO or not, if so, please clarify, but what I am getting is that if you are, and you are being fired upon, and you are hit, and you are about to be murdered, that your advise to me is to just watch?

If that is the way that the LEO's feel about it, then who am I to get involved and take action.

You have given me my out for not doing what I may feel is correct.

I go home to my family, the LEO that I've just let be murdered, well, I was told to just shut up and leave (I don't have a tactical cell phone so I can't use the one that I have).

Okay, can do.

Wayne
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