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Old December 8, 2005, 11:02 AM   #1
Doug.38PR
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Air Marshals, what were they supposed to do?

News media is asking if the air marshal was right in firing at the guy who was screaming he had a bomb and refused to comply and reached into a bag.

What happened is sad, I'm sorry the man's wife is now a widow, but frankly what was the air marshal supposed to do? Wait and see if the bag blows up everybody or not? To be there is no question.

This also kinda ties into my other post about when to draw on a bad guy. Before he pulls the gun (if there is a gun) or after he pulls a gun. If someone makes a deadly threat to immediately harm you then are you justified in acting. The incident in miami yesterday would seem to suggest yes.
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Old December 8, 2005, 11:09 AM   #2
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Some people need to be shot

I second that yes. Hell, it is not a secret on why airline/airport security is so tight these days. If there is one thing......just one thing....that you absolutely do not do while on an airplane is yell, "I HAVE A BOMB"

Hmmm, Air Marshal....is that a decent paying job?
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Old December 8, 2005, 11:13 AM   #3
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sadly, they had no choice

But I feel real badly for the wife and family. He could just as easily have run up the aisle screaming "I'm the President of the United States, put me on Air Force One" and he'd be alive, but hospitalized, today. He was having a psychotic episode. He did not "deserve" to die, but the marshals had no way of knowing and they did what they were supposed to do. I expect they are sad to find to learn the guy was mentally ill and off his meds too.

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Old December 8, 2005, 11:20 AM   #4
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I can only think about what heros the air marshals would have been had they found the bag contained a bomb and their actions prevented it from being detonated.

I continue to be frustrated by the endless discussion at these situations when they start talking about why the law enforcement folks could not have done more precise shooting to disable the person rather than injure them so badly that they die as a result of these injuries.

As I understand it, there were 5 shots fired and the suspect was stopped. This is much better shooting than many law enforcement situations.

I do feel for the widow and the suspect's family.
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Old December 8, 2005, 11:43 AM   #5
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What is to keep a terrorist team from having a distraction plan in which one member (a woman) yells that the actor is disturbed?

You need to focus on the potentially lethal actor. If what the marshalls said was true, they acted reasonably.
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Old December 8, 2005, 11:48 AM   #6
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why is a mentally ill person who is off of their meds on an airplane? sounds like poor judgment by the family.

i can afford an airplane ticket, but not my meds, hmmmm..............
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Old December 8, 2005, 11:56 AM   #7
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Some people need to be shot

+1

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Old December 8, 2005, 12:07 PM   #8
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I think they responded accordingly. We know they are trained very well and I figure they told this guy plenty of times to drop the bag and get on the floor. You would have to be a fool to wait for him to pull a gun or worse blow a bomb. The media is going to go over this until our ears bleed. The resposibity for taking his medicine falls upon the family and his wife. We live in dangerous times and I think we all know that its better to be safe than sorry.

Knowing how to act on a plan is like knowing to put your hands on the wheel when you are pulled over for a speeding ticket. Cops a real nervous walking up to a car, why am I gonna provoke a response? The same goes for the airport.

I'm tired of all the play ground finger pointing. Are we ever gonna grow up?
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Old December 8, 2005, 12:23 PM   #9
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I concur that the Air Mashals did right.

Tragic but they did what they had to do.

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Old December 8, 2005, 12:24 PM   #10
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It sucks to be him but he left the air marshalls no choice. Unfortuantely, the air marshalls couldn't just assume that he was bluffing or that he was mentally handicapped. This reminds me of a case that occured about 8 years ago. A man boarded a bus carrying handicapped children and claimed that he had a bomb. The was was shot a killed, and it was later discovered that he did not have any explosives on him.

You are always going to have stupid people criticizing the police and claiming brutality, but imagine the blame they would throw for the police's failure to act if there really was a bomb involved. It is sad that this man had to die, but in a way, it really shows that there are air marshalls onboard. I hope that curbs some would be terrorists from trying to blow up airplanes. The sad reality is it probably will have no effect since the terrorist would simply blow up the plane rather than making any commotion first.
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Old December 8, 2005, 12:37 PM   #11
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Hypothetical no...

Hypothetically speaking, what do you all think would be going on now in the media if the deceased was black? This came up on the Lionel radio show last night, and he is certainly not a hard right host.

My opinion is that Wrangel, Sharpton and the rest of the clown patrol would be out there claiming they "killed him for being black." What do you all think?
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Old December 8, 2005, 12:51 PM   #12
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Actually, I think it the fact he was a hispanic, which can be confused for Middle Eastern, didn't help him much either. Hey I heard the guy was shot 5 or 6 times??? Glaser rounds couldn't put him down????
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Old December 8, 2005, 01:01 PM   #13
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There is no controversy here.
The news media, however, survives on controversy. Therefore, they will find it somewhere, no matter what.
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Old December 8, 2005, 01:08 PM   #14
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Quote:
Glaser rounds couldn't put him down????
Air Marshalls do not carry Glasers. .357 Sig with Gold Dots worked just fine.
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Old December 8, 2005, 01:26 PM   #15
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mmmm

Im going to go ahead and say the 5-6 rounds did him in.
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Old December 8, 2005, 01:29 PM   #16
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I absolutely agree with what they did. They acted without hesitation to an immediate threat. Because that threat turned out to be false, means nothing. There where no other options except not acting and risking all the lives of the people on the plane and in the airport. I know that the air marshall probably are wishing they could have had time or more information but they didn't, and it wasn't because of lack of preparation or training or a failure in the system. That is just the way it was. And they did what they had to.
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Old December 8, 2005, 01:40 PM   #17
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Wife is to blame.....

Taking someone who could have a potential psychotic episode, and strapping a backpack to his front (suspicious in itself) on a plane flight is not very smart. Either that or she is angling for a lawsuit and insurance money.

The air marshalls acted accordingly. They are trained to deal with these situations, they gave the potential suspect a chance to surrender. He instead reached into his backpack. Not a good idea.

The time for practical jokes in airports and planes is over.
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Old December 8, 2005, 01:53 PM   #18
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As a pilot, supporter of law enforcement, and soon-to-be gun owner, I agree with the way the situation was handled. The air marshall had no choice to shoot given the circumsatnces. He asked the man to stop, the man failed to comply, and then by reaching into the bag, made a move that could have resulted in tragic loss of life should a bomb have been in the bag.

As a pilot, it is important to me that our commercial airliners have armed air marshalls on board. Foreign and domestic terrorists should be dealt with nothing less than lethal force. Pilots and crewmembers cannot be expected to fly the aircraft and protect passengers from potential terrorism. Kudos to the marshall for doing his job and protecting the lives of innocent people.

Prayers and thoughts to the victim and his family.
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Old December 8, 2005, 02:24 PM   #19
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Why not shoot to wound instead of shoot to kill

This morning, I was watching (NBC?) a news program wherein the reporter (? -- maybe I should use the term talking head/interviewer) was interviewing an apparent LEO about the incident. The reporter kept asking the LEO why the air marshals couldn't have attempted to shoot and wound the guy instead of shooting and killing him.

The LEO was quite patient and polite to the talking head.
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Old December 8, 2005, 02:29 PM   #20
Doug.38PR
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Fremmer,
The talking head sounds like he has been watching too much television and movies. "Shoot to wound the guy." like in Roy Rogers or one of those B Westerns.
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Old December 8, 2005, 02:39 PM   #21
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I always wonder about this; Hundreds of thousands of people die every year because of medical mistakes, and no one blames the doctors, nor should they. Those doctors, nurses, ect. are just doing their jobs and trying to save lives, which they do and in much larger numbers. Police do the same thing yet due to media attention ect. they are often crucified foy making the only choice they could at the time.
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Old December 8, 2005, 02:39 PM   #22
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Quote:
But I feel real badly for the wife and family. He could just as easily have run up the aisle screaming "I'm the President of the United States, put me on Air Force One" and he'd be alive, but hospitalized, today. He was having a psychotic episode. He did not "deserve" to die, but the marshals had no way of knowing and they did what they were supposed to do. I expect they are sad to find to learn the guy was mentally ill and off his meds too.

Keep watching... Someone is going to suggest that we get some sort of "Sane Individual I.D. Card" that certifies our mental health before we can fly, and there'll be a new no-fly list of anyone on medication for depression, whatever... After all, how can the security people know who is on medication and has kept up with the dosage?


I also agree with the air marshalls' actions in this case. The woman and her husband bear responsibility for what happened to him, and no one else. HE probably was aware of how he can get when off his meds; and SHE had to be aware of how he can get when he's off his meds. Now AFTER the fact, the family is saying that he was off his meds? They didn't think about what could happen if he went nuts on an airplane because of it?


And I HATE these idiots who ask (when they ask, they're not asking, they're suggesting) that someone in law enforcement or even a civilian would-be victim should have "shot to wound" rather than shot to stop -- which generally involves lethality in order to be sure the attacker is "stopped." Get a life.


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Old December 8, 2005, 02:44 PM   #23
gewgaw
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about those Glaser rounds...

I thought Air Marshalls all used frangible ammunition to prevent decompressing the cabin should they have to shoot while the plane is in flight? Do they really use plain old HP's?
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Old December 8, 2005, 03:04 PM   #24
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Quote:
I thought Air Marshalls all used frangible ammunition to prevent decompressing the cabin should they have to shoot while the plane is in flight? Do they really use plain old HP's?
I don't know one way or another what they use.... However frangibles thus far only work on things like walls and trees. The soda-can-like skin of an airplane would get punched by pretty much anything.

Thats why I think the .357 Sig is an interesting choice. It has alot of power, however should it punch the airplane, it'll make a slightly smaller hole than a .45, or even the .40.
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Old December 8, 2005, 03:11 PM   #25
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I think the air marshal did exactly the right thing and should now be holding his head high, because he did the right thing. Forget what crap the media spout because you are damned if you do and damned if you don't.

Better to be the wolf that you are rather than a sheep they want you to be.
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