The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Conference Center > Law and Civil Rights

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old November 14, 2011, 09:26 AM   #26
American Made
Member
 
Join Date: September 21, 2011
Location: Idaho
Posts: 92
I can't believe the police shot this man. We have this same issue all over this country - where the hiring procedures of departments are placing honest people at risk.

You simply can't hire someone without "real life" experience, expecting them to handle "real life" problems. The new model Law enforcer is squeaky clean, perfect credit, never been in any fist fights, perfect grades, etc.

This wasn't me, so I was turned away. On the plus side, my brother works for the State police. And he tells me the same story: The newer officers go by the "letter of the law" not the " spirit of the law". So, if you're driving four over down the road, you're getting a fine...period. All the issues around my area with law enforcement... involve younger officers.
This is from my area of Idaho.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JAfLm7Q8Ork

This is the standard complaint by older officers.

Last edited by American Made; November 14, 2011 at 09:55 AM.
American Made is offline  
Old November 14, 2011, 02:43 PM   #27
therealdeal
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 15, 2010
Posts: 627
interesting video
__________________
NRA Distinguished Life Member

"Abraham Lincoln freed all men, but Sam Colt made them all equal." (post Civil War slogan)
therealdeal is offline  
Old November 14, 2011, 04:21 PM   #28
ltc444
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 3, 2011
Location: Vernon AZ
Posts: 1,195
More an more I am seeing hostility by the police toward citzens. I think this is a part of the increased emphasis on tactical training with less emphasis on serving the community.

Police have allways been isolated to some degree, in Urban environments they are allmost totally seperated from the communities they allegedly serve.

This isolation is not good for the Law enforcement community nor for the citzens they are sworn to protect.
ltc444 is offline  
Old November 14, 2011, 05:46 PM   #29
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 6,489
Quote:
Originally Posted by tyme
Just so I have this straight...

The police can't be bothered to patrol to keep Sturdivant's property from getting stolen, his house burned, and his yard turned into a dump, but they can find time to film reality TV shows?

And they criticize citizens who take the law into their own hands?
^^^ This.

You have it straight. Welcome to the new reality of life in the (formerly) United States.
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old November 14, 2011, 06:40 PM   #30
Webleymkv
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 20, 2005
Location: Indiana
Posts: 9,926
Here's how the whole thing appears to me: Did Sturdivant display poor judgement? Yes, he probably did as warning shots are generally a bad idea outside of limited circumstances such as an animal attack. However, given that the DA decided to drop all charges, it does not seem that Sturdivant actually did anything illegal, just something unwise. Sturdivant never denied firing shots, so if he had done so illegally the DA would have a pretty strong case an no reason to drop charges. Alexander's previous and current legal troubles and the way he behaved when confronted tells me that Sturdivant's suscpicions were most likely spot on in that Alexander had every intention of robbing him. I suspect that the only reason Alexander was not charged in this particular incident was that he was confronted by Sturdivant before he had the opportunity to act on his intentions.

I do, however, think that the police acted negligently, recklessly and displayed just as poor if not poorer judgment than that of Sturdivant. I also think that Sturdivant has good grounds and should pursue a lawsuit against the department in order to help recoup some of the damages he's suffered. Not only did the police shoot a man who'd apparently broken no law, but the comments from the video suggest that they shot a man that they weren't even sure was armed. Now, before I get accused of cop-bashing, I realize that a police officer has a stressful job, that mistakes are easy to make in the heat of the moment, that hindsight is 20/20, and that to err is human. None of that, however, absolves the police of their responsibility, and also liability, for the hardships they've caused in the life of a man who has broken no law.

Hopefully, Mr. Sturdivant has insurance that will help him get back on his feet. Tragically, however, much if not most of what Sturdivant has lost is irreplacable regardless of how much money he might get from an insurance policy or legal settlement.

As for the people that stole and vandalized Sturdivant's property while he was unable to defend it, my thoughts about them are not fit for polite conversation. I also find it odd, to say the least, that given Sturdivant's prior issues with theft from his property that the police couldn't be bothered keep a closer eye on his property to prevent the humanoid vultures from doing what they did.
__________________
Smith, and Wesson, and Me. -H. Callahan
Well waddaya know, one buwwet weft! -E. Fudd
All bad precedents begin as justifiable measures. -J. Caesar
Webleymkv is offline  
Old November 14, 2011, 09:06 PM   #31
Justice06RR
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 21, 2010
Location: Central FL
Posts: 1,269
Quote:
We need to have the right to defend what we have worked hard to obtain. When someone steals from me, he steals not only a thing, he also steals however much of my LIFE was expended in earning the money to buy that thing. I no longer think it immoral to use deadly force to protect MY property.
I can agree to this, although some may think its not reasonable. Any criminal who has decided to steal your possesions has broken the law, and who's to know if they won't do it again to someone else, and possibly injure or kill an innocent person in the process?

In the case of the original story, it seems the justice and law enforcement system has failed to do its job properly and left this man on a limb. I'm not sure of all the details, but IMO you don't treat a Veteran like that (all factors considered of course).
Justice06RR is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 01:14 AM   #32
Eghad
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 28, 2005
Location: Texas
Posts: 6,231
I don't think the DA would have had much of a case with his star witness having such a record. I think the DA was bluffing all along hoping the guy would take the lesser charges. The DA thought he had a slam dunk till the story got out.

My question is what would this Alexander fellow have done if he had not been armed? He has a criminal record. He must have been intent on something because a person in their right mind doesn't hang around after being fired at.

He had no intention of killing the guy. If he had wanted to do that he could have done it on the first shot at that range.

It wouldn't have taken me long to come up with a verdict in that case If I had been on the jury.

I see the shooting is till being investigated....
__________________
Have a nice day at the range

NRA Life Member
Eghad is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 09:45 AM   #33
therealdeal
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 15, 2010
Posts: 627
Quote:
I see the shooting is till being investigated....
I hope you are right.
__________________
NRA Distinguished Life Member

"Abraham Lincoln freed all men, but Sam Colt made them all equal." (post Civil War slogan)
therealdeal is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 10:10 AM   #34
pgdion
Senior Member
 
Join Date: April 22, 2010
Location: MPLS, MN
Posts: 1,112
Quote:
Shooting to protect property, and not life, is usually an iffy situation, at best.
So true, in MN this is a no go. If a guy is walking out with your 50" plasma TV, you gotta let him go. If you can claim you felt you or your families lives were threatened, now you can use deadly force (although if his hands are full with your TV then that might be hard to do). So bottom line is if it's happening outside your house, you don't begin to be able to justify a shooting.

Sadly in today's society so often the rights of the criminals out way the rights of the victims.
__________________
597 VTR, because there's so many cans and so little time!
pgdion is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 10:49 AM   #35
therealdeal
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 15, 2010
Posts: 627
Quote:
So true, in MN this is a no go. If a guy is walking out with your 50" plasma TV, you gotta let him go.
I won't shoot him in that situation, but I'll bust him up in the head before he walks away w/my TV. If he escalates, that is on him.

I can also have him put down my TV nicely while at gunpoint.
__________________
NRA Distinguished Life Member

"Abraham Lincoln freed all men, but Sam Colt made them all equal." (post Civil War slogan)
therealdeal is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 11:12 AM   #36
Patriot86
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 23, 2010
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 1,293
IMO there is a difference between someone stealing from your home and from your "land".

This is only my opinion and will NOT be legal in many states but IMO if you break into my home your life is forfit. It becomes my judgment call if you are a threat to me or my family; If you resist in any way shape of form you may be shot. If I feel threatened the threat will be dispatched period. Here in Illinois believe it or not a homeonwer has some latitude in the use of deadly force so long as they believe it is needed to prevent a forcible felony.


Someone stealing from your property; there is no imminent danger if you are in your home. Yes you should have the right to confront someone stealing from you and use deadly force if threatened; but shooting at a fleeing suspect who is not even fleeing with your property is not the best decision. Even if they have your property; shooting your own car or lawnmower full of holes is pretty counterproductive.
Patriot86 is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 03:39 PM   #37
BillCA
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 28, 2004
Location: Silicon Valley, Ca
Posts: 7,087
Quote:
Originally Posted by ITC444
More an more I am seeing hostility by the police toward citzens. I think this is a part of the increased emphasis on tactical training with less emphasis on serving the community.

Police have allways been isolated to some degree, in Urban environments they are allmost totally seperated from the communities they allegedly serve.

This isolation is not good for the Law enforcement community nor for the citzens they are sworn to protect.
This is nothing new. It started with the advent of the police patrol car.

Officers used to walk a beat in large cities. This allowed them to actually speak to citizens every day, get to know the people in the area - shopkeepers, residents, customers and trouble makers. Putting them in cars to cover larger areas deprived them of this contact.

In the 70's, training began to include tactics and skills to keep you alive against the new breed of criminal -- radicals, crazy political groups and drug dealers. By the 90's, the police were more militarized than ever. Police brass loved the scenes of SWAT team dynamic raids on the news -- showing citizens their police were doing highly dangerous things to "protect the peepul". Now we have SWAT raids for misdemeanor warrants and unpaid student loans.

In the instant case, it would appear that the police failed in almost all their duties and responsibilities. Given the nature of the incident, his injuries and losses, an 8-figure settlement would not be inappropriate.
__________________
BillCA in CA (Unfortunately)
BillCA is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 04:00 PM   #38
Patriot86
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 23, 2010
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 1,293
Quote:
Now we have SWAT raids for misdemeanor warrants and unpaid student loans.

They did a SWAT style raid against a guy for selling illegally imported fish. It turned out it was the guys teenage son selling the fish for money on the side. Seriously, about 10 guys, geared up with AR's and shotguns raiding a house over illegal fish....what if they had startled the homeowner and shot him...over illegal fish...just saying
Patriot86 is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 04:39 PM   #39
Conn. Trooper
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 12, 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 530
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TFPDeiQFfZs

Thats what could happen when you hesitate and somebody with a rifle shoots you. The gurgling at the end is Trooper Randy Vetter dying. Over a seatbelt ticket.

If the guy points a rifle at police, the outcome should not be a suprise. Did he get suprised by police and turn at them with no intention of shooting? Maybe. I wasn't there, the guy is outside with a gun, they order him to drop it, and then shoot. I don't see the problem here.
Conn. Trooper is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 04:45 PM   #40
OldMarksman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 8, 2008
Posts: 1,987
Quote:
Posted by Justice06RR: Any criminal who has decided to steal your possesions has broken the law, and who's to know if they won't do it again to someone else, and possibly injure or kill an innocent person in the process?
Actually, no. Anyone who has decided to steal your possessions and who has taken some specific steps to further the taking of your possessions has broken the law.

Before said person can be punished, at least in a civilized society of laws, he or she must be charged, tried, and sentenced. The intended victim does not have the authority do do so. Nor is the death penalty assessed against thieves.

That we do not know that the thief, or that Justice06RR, for that matter, will commit a crime in the future does not justify the use of deadly force against either one.

These are by no means new ideas. They represent the evolution of cnturies upon centuries of careful legal thought.
OldMarksman is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 08:27 PM   #41
tyme
Staff
 
Join Date: October 13, 2001
Posts: 3,178
I'm generally against lethal force to stop a felony theft in progress, but in this veteran's case I think there are extenuating circumstances, so while I wouldn't have done the same thing, I wouldn't vote to convict him of anything if I were on his jury. A thief taunting someone who's got a rifle is not the brightest thing in the world to do. In perhaps a more "civilized" society, that sort of thing would be an automatic challenge to a duel, and suspect the ex-marine would have won any such duel.

The problem I have with use of lethal force to stop a fleeing robber/burglar from fleeing with stolen property is simple. Those laws were designed I hope primarily to protect important property that's someone's livelihood. That's fine. But too many gun-toting law&order types would use such a law as justification to shoot a fleeing burglar/robber to prevent loss of any property even if it's insignificant to their livelihood or well being. While the law makes it legal in a state like Texas to use lethal force in such a situation, assuming all the requirements are met, I think it goes against the intent, or what I think should be the intent, of the law.

Before you value a criminal's life at less than a stereo or TV or jewelry or anything like that, remember that they're probably an ex-con, and if so, while it was their own (often poor) decisions that got them into prison in the first place, it was the prison system itself that likely made them into a career criminal. The same prison system that law&order types love sticking more and more people into, for lesser and lesser crimes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by therealdeal
I won't shoot him in that situation, but I'll bust him up in the head before he walks away w/my TV. If he escalates, that is on him.
You would voluntarily start a close quarters fight with a burglar?
__________________
“The egg hatched...” “...the egg hatched... and a hundred baby spiders came out...” (blade runner)
“Who are you?” “A friend. I'm here to prevent you from making a mistake.” “You have no idea what I'm doing here, friend.” “In specific terms, no, but I swore an oath to protect the world...” (continuum)
“It's a goal you won't understand until later. Your job is to make sure he doesn't achieve the goal.” (bsg)
tyme is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 09:42 PM   #42
therealdeal
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 15, 2010
Posts: 627
good point Tyme. No, I wouldn't. However, as described by the person from Minnesota and in a unique scenario, it is definately possible.

If I came down the stairs and some idiot was 5-10ft from me with his hands full of TV, yes I think I would. It would be better than verbally starting a confrontation with him.
__________________
NRA Distinguished Life Member

"Abraham Lincoln freed all men, but Sam Colt made them all equal." (post Civil War slogan)
therealdeal is offline  
Old November 15, 2011, 09:44 PM   #43
therealdeal
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 15, 2010
Posts: 627
as for the thief...he messed with a bleeding heart and got more than he bargained for. Sometimes a good person will snap. That thief was lucky he was a good person because I think he missed on purpose.
__________________
NRA Distinguished Life Member

"Abraham Lincoln freed all men, but Sam Colt made them all equal." (post Civil War slogan)
therealdeal is offline  
Old November 16, 2011, 07:26 AM   #44
Uncle Buck
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 21, 2009
Location: West Central Missouri
Posts: 2,561
Quote:
Before you value a criminal's life at less than a stereo or TV or jewelry or anything like that, remember that they're probably an ex-con, and if so, while it was their own (often poor) decisions that got them into prison in the first place, it was the prison system itself that likely made them into a career criminal. The same prison system that law&order types love sticking more and more people into, for lesser and lesser crimes.
I have some problems with this statement;

1. I believe it stereotypes.

2. Two of the reasons we have so many people in prison is:
A. Because we are a nation of laws.
B. We expect legal remedies every-time we are inconvenienced.

3. I feel one reason people end up in prison a second/third/fourth... time is because they continue to make poor judgements. The prison system does not make them in to a career criminal, them not accepting responsibilities for their actions makes them in to career criminals.

4. Blaming society for your ills is not the answer.
__________________
Inside Every Bright Idea Is The 50% Probability Of A Disaster Waiting To Happen.
Uncle Buck is offline  
Old November 16, 2011, 05:21 PM   #45
youngunz4life
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 15, 2010
Location: United States of America
Posts: 1,877
Uncle Buck makes a good point

Some people aren't able to FACE their wrongs. This isn't always, but sometimes you have to face your issues, problems, etc to experience the other side. It is easier to keep using a drug instead of facing your problems as an example IF this drug is destroying your life and/or making you go to jail, be a criminal, and so-on. It isn't comfortable to do the opposite and face life without it, but if you can do it things get better eventually. The quick fix has consequences. I know this is only an example, but sometimes you have to do the right thing and BREAK THE CYCLE.

If you are going to jail 2, 3, 4 times in a row you need to make changes accordingly. You can do this if you ask for help plus put your mind to it. There have been many cases of people facing and overcoming their issues even though it isn't easy&can be uncomfortable. Others don't step up and face their issues. Make the choice or pay the price. Take responsibility, don't blame everyone else. And when you point fingers, usually three people are pointing fingers back at you for every one you point.
__________________
"Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!" -Admiral Farragut @ Battle of Mobile Bay 05AUG1864
youngunz4life is offline  
Old November 17, 2011, 12:56 AM   #46
BillCA
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 28, 2004
Location: Silicon Valley, Ca
Posts: 7,087
Quote:
Originally Posted by tyme
The problem I have with use of lethal force to stop a fleeing robber/burglar from fleeing with stolen property is simple. Those laws were designed I hope primarily to protect important property that's someone's livelihood. That's fine. But too many gun-toting law&order types would use such a law as justification to shoot a fleeing burglar/robber to prevent loss of any property even if it's insignificant to their livelihood or well being. While the law makes it legal in a state like Texas to use lethal force in such a situation, assuming all the requirements are met, I think it goes against the intent, or what I think should be the intent, of the law.
We're in general agreement on this part. If someone is in my driveway stealing my car, that -- IMHO -- should be the equivalent of the Old West crime of stealing a man's horse. I use my car to make a living, even if it's just to drive a few miles in each direction. Depriving me of it not only costs me money, but makes me vulnerable in other ways.¹

The problem is that we cannot put a definitive dollar value on material goods versus a thief's life. Stealing a 42" HDTV from Donald Trump's vacation home will hurt him a lot less than stealing a 19" Color portable from someone living in public housing. Nor does our system of laws permit making the distinction based on "class" (rich v. poor for example). Laypersons may believe Mr. Trump is merely inconvenienced while believing the poor person was "substantially damaged", however this is based on community morality more than codified law.

The real problem is that theft is wrong and, with rare exception, it is always wrong. Laws distinguish between misdemeanor (petty) theft and felony grand theft, usually by the cost of the item(s) stolen. Stealing a cell phone may fall into the "petty theft" category, yet also be a serious theft if the person relies on that phone for a living (e.g. a consultant, doctor, repairman). So where do we draw the line? When a man is in your garage taking items, you can't value that theft without knowing what he's taking.

A thief is a person who thinks he has as more rights to your property than you do. He disregards the normal boundaries that legitimate citizens respect - property lines, doors, windows, locks, etc. He shows his contempt for property rights and in some cases may show his contempt for your life. ² He may enter locked places, causing damage on top of the theft (which may cost more to fix than the theft). In short, he has spit upon the laws and societal rules and will do as he pleases.

Catching such a person in the act carries inherent risks. What starts as a petty crime can quickly turn into a lethal encounter when the thief decides his departure is more important than your life.

I don't advocate shooting at the fleeing thief since a personal threat is diminishing. A thief caught in the act, who fails to comply with your commands and/or makes threats or threatening moves has, by his actions, declared himself outside the law -- and I consider such people an immediate threat to my safety.

Most thieves are self-employed. As such, they should carry their own insurance against common hazards of their jobs -- falls, cuts, dog bites, blunt force trauma and gunshots from angry victims. His failure to look after his own welfare should not be construed to obligate his victim to do so.


¹ Lacking a car, one becomes dependent upon public transit where assaults are more frequent, exposure to airborne illnesses and/or weather extremes, etc.
² Some thieves set fires to cover their crimes, regardless of the proximity of others. Some will threaten the owner with a weapon to prevent capture or losing his loot.
__________________
BillCA in CA (Unfortunately)
BillCA is offline  
Old November 17, 2011, 01:34 AM   #47
Webleymkv
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 20, 2005
Location: Indiana
Posts: 9,926
Quote:
If the guy points a rifle at police, the outcome should not be a suprise. Did he get suprised by police and turn at them with no intention of shooting? Maybe. I wasn't there, the guy is outside with a gun, they order him to drop it, and then shoot. I don't see the problem here.
The problem is that, at this point at least, it does not appear that Sturdivant ever pointed the rifle at the police. Actually, given the "I hope there's a gun" comments of the police in the video, it seems that the police may not have even seen the rifle in Sturdivant's hands prior to shooting him. If the police are given the right to shoot anyone who they think might have a gun then we're beginning down a very slippery slope.
__________________
Smith, and Wesson, and Me. -H. Callahan
Well waddaya know, one buwwet weft! -E. Fudd
All bad precedents begin as justifiable measures. -J. Caesar
Webleymkv is offline  
Old November 17, 2011, 08:19 AM   #48
Double Naught Spy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 8, 2001
Location: Forestburg, Montague County, Texas
Posts: 10,461
Quote:
They did a SWAT style raid against a guy for selling illegally imported fish. It turned out it was the guys teenage son selling the fish for money on the side. Seriously, about 10 guys, geared up with AR's and shotguns raiding a house over illegal fish....what if they had startled the homeowner and shot him...over illegal fish...just saying
Funny how it does not sound like much, but USFWS and various state game wardens do get hurt, shot, and sometimes killed over issues of illegal game procurement. There is considerable co-occurrence of additional illegal activities.

Remember it is usually the criminal that turns a situation into a life or death situation...just saying.
__________________
"If you look through your scope and see your shoe, aim higher."
-- said to me by my 11 year old daughter before going out for hogs 8/13/2011
Double Naught Spy is offline  
Old November 17, 2011, 03:09 PM   #49
Conn. Trooper
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 12, 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 530
Another says, “You got a shot, take it.”

“Drop the gun,” one officer shouts.

A second later one rifle shot is fired.


I would say they saw a gun and ordered him to drop it. I do not know that for certain, nor do I know that he pointed it at them. I read the article and this part jumped out at me. Plus, another part of the story says a bullet went through the sling and struck the gun. I would hazard a guess the police saw the gun, and it was in his hands in order for the bullet to hit it. If the rifle was on the ground or in the house, how did the police shoot it.

I believe he may have been startled and turned towards the officers giving him commands, maybe turning the rifle as he looked.

Bad situation all around.
Conn. Trooper is offline  
Old November 17, 2011, 07:41 PM   #50
ltc444
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 3, 2011
Location: Vernon AZ
Posts: 1,195
These Officers responded in an agressive military manner without knowing what the situation was.

Their rules of engagement were that of an Infantry squad assualting a position in a combat zone. This is appropriate for Irag or Afganistan. It is not appropriate for Fulton county GA.

Shooting had ceased prior to their arrival. They had time to assess the situation before they opened fire on an unknown individual in and unknown situation. The list of unknowns was far greater than what they knew. In fact they had two knowns 1) shots had been fired. 2) An individual had a weapon. Just off the top of my head I can think of 10 or 20 unknowns which should have been addressed before they opened fire.

Many times we have seen standoffs go on for hours while police determined what the situation was. These generally end in a positive manner. Here a bunch of hot shot bad asses did not think. They lacked effective command and control. I would lay odds that the officers violated volumns of departmental procedures and regulations.

Look at the Miami Dade response to the FBI shoot out. Shots were being exchanged. The local Law enforcement could not determin what the situation was so they held position and waited until they could determine who and what was going on. This is the response which should have occurred in this incident.
ltc444 is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:13 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.13715 seconds with 7 queries