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Old January 22, 2012, 07:46 AM   #1
alzika
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Join Date: August 24, 2008
Posts: 14
Last year, I lawfully had a right to use deadly force (but didn't)

I have a CCW. I was in my car in front of my apartment and had fallen asleep and my holstered handgun was on the passenger seat. The time was around 3 AM in the morning. Someone saw it, called cops, and one showed up. I was awoken to this: yelling and screaming, my passenger window being broken, and then a gun stuck in my face with a flashlight blinding me. I thought I was being carjacked and tried to comply.

Turns out it was an officer and I found out after being tased (in the back while on the ground, not resisting). He turned his blue lights off AND his headlights off and approached the car with gun drawn, which is on the video. Never once does he say to that he is an officer and I had no indication that he was.

He even asks me in the car on the way to the jail: "you didn't realize I was an officer, did you?" Would any REASONABLE person believe someone to be an officer in such a situation if the person does not say police and they do not see blue lights?

Now, I've known all along that I thought from the beginning that I was being carjacked by a criminal and had the right to use deadly force. After it took them over a year to turn over the video tape, turns out I was right. He did not identify and he turned his blue lights off right before pulling in front of my apartment.

The only thing that kept me from reaching for the gun were three facts:

1) He had the gun pointed at my head for 20+ seconds; if his goal were to kill me, I would already be dead
2) The gun was on the passenger seat AND holstered
3) I wouldn't have been able to reach across, unholster, and fire BEFORE being fired upon, myself

This really could have turned into a BAD situation for both myself and the officer.

Let this be a lesson to all cops who read this forum. Be sure to always identify yourself as an officer or at least give some indication. I thought someone was trying to commit a violent felony and steal my car at gunpoint and was TRUTHFULLY in fear for me life. To be honest, if the gun had been on my person and not on the seat, I would have gotten out of the car, unholstered, and started firing.

The only reason I am pursuing a civil case against the police department and the officer himself is to prevent similar situations from occurring in the future. I have a feeling that these officers are untrained or not trained to the level they should be. He should have waited for backup and used his spotlight pointed towards my car while he waited backup instead of trying to be a hero and approaching slowly with a drawn gun, never identifying himself.
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Old January 22, 2012, 08:36 AM   #2
Frank Ettin
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Join Date: November 23, 2005
Location: California - San Francisco
Posts: 6,288
Sounds sort of like you first of all shouldn't have had the handgun out and exposed sitting on the front seat -- which, as I understand things based on another post of yours, is against South Carolina law.

As for the rest of it, we weren't there and really don't know enough about what happened to comment on what else you should have or could have done, or what the LEO should have and could have done. Anyway, you brought this up before: http://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=457443.

I don't see any reason to rehash things.
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