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02 November, 2012

Armed with a pool cue

Today's enraging news involves yet another example of what could not possibly be deemed "necessary" or "justified" use of lethal force by the police.

This time, it's a drunk kid, with a pool cue, in front of his parents, being killed by deputies at point-blank range. For some reason, killing this guy was the only thing that occurred to the police officer. The article claims that the suspect was "about to swing at the officer's head." That's obviously what they need to say, to justify this use of force. Of course, the police can always justify use of force, because, well, they're the police. Don't fuck with the police, because they can shoot you if they want.

And the consequence of this unnecessary shooting? Probably a few weeks or months of paid vacation for the deputy.

You can spout off all the opposing viewpoints you want, to the effect of me not being in a position to judge whether the force was necessary. But it's pretty clear that the kid came out swinging at the deputies, because the deputies arrived at his place and he was drunk. Had there been no deputies, there would be no swinging. And the kid may be an asshole, and a criminal, but he had a pool cue, for Christ's sake. If you're a trained cop, go in there and take him down with a billy club, or maybe try your Taser more than once before you resort to pumping lead into someone. Or, even better? How about just back the fuck off and wait the kid out until he calms down. He wasn't going to start killing random people with his pool cue.

This was completely unnecessary.

Falls right in line with the other recent episodes in the news of police shooting a naked man, and a naked woman. Seriously. Naked. In the case of the boy, there was no weapon. In the case of the girl, there was a weapon, but the news stories have thus far failed to report what the weapon was (which would strongly suggest it was not a gun). Actually, further reading suggests that she was carrying an antique gun that belonged to her boyfriend, and was non-functioning. And she was insane.

When are we, as a society, going to make it a little harder for the police to get away with this shit?

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