Nothing To Hide (And Nowhere To Hide It) But Everything To Fear: The Police Vs. The Unarmed And Naked

from the but-all-I-had-to-defend-myself-with-was-my-gun,-body-armor,-training... dept

"Naked" is synonymous with "vulnerable." And yet, plenty of naked people continue to be shot and killed by police officers, despite having nowhere to hide weapons and nothing standing between them and the bullets headed their way.

Of course, naked people are far more prone to find themselves in confrontations with police. In almost every case, substance use/abuse or mental illness will be the reason for the person's nudity. Despite being handicapped by both limited mental faculties and lack of any protection, naked people are often considered inherently "threatening," and thus, worthy recipients of any level of force that allows responding officers to feel "safe" again.

17-year-old David Joseph was shot to death by Austin police officer Geoffrey Freeman, who was responding to reports of a naked man acting erratically. Freeman said he feared for his life, even though Joseph had no clothing and no weapons.

Of course, the first response from the police union was to assume Joseph was under the influence of a "drug like PCP." PCP is the go-to guess for officers trying to explain how they felt overwhelmed by a person smaller than them... or carrying no weapons... or wearing no clothes. It supposedly gives even unarmed, naked people superhuman strength and increased resistance to less-lethal force. How many people officers feel are using PCP is miles away from how many people are actually using PCP.

Here's a rather boring graph showing the "rise" in PCP use over the years. (Click here to see the statistics behind the chart.)


The use of PCP is so limited, the DOJ just lumps it in with a bunch of other substances under the heading of "other or non-drug."


And yet, the first assumption is that a naked teen an officer killed was on PCP. The autopsy did find substances in Joseph's body, but not anything that would make him aggressive or dangerous.
[A]n autopsy released last week showed he had marijuana and Xanax in his system when he was killed.
This case echoes one from nearly two years ago in Colorado. Again, a naked, unarmed teen was fatally shot by a police officer -- but that time the officer had to enter someone's house to do it.
Alvar called Fountain police on the afternoon of Sept. 22, 2014, to report someone trying to steal a motorcycle from her garage. Two other officers were dispatched, but upon hearing the address, Officer Kay said, "That's Patrick," and volunteered to take the call, the mother says in the March 4 federal complaint.

When Kay arrived, Alvar says, she told him her son was upstairs, preparing to take a shower. Kay followed her upstairs, looked into the bathroom when she opened the door, and saw her son naked, preparing to get into the shower, the mother says in the complaint.

She says Kay grabbed the bathroom door handle and told Patrick to put on his underwear. Patrick and Kay pushed and pulled on the door, and when Patrick managed to close it, "Officer Kay drew his weapon and fired one shot through the closed bathroom door. After firing the shot, Officer Kay opened the bathroom door to find Patrick lying naked on the ground with his head against the left corner by the bathtub. Blood was coming out of his head," according to the complaint.
Once again, a naked person was described as a threat. Despite the fact Patrick Alvar wasn't carrying a weapon, Officer Kay firmly believed the motion he saw Patrick make was a move for a hidden weapon. From Kay's report on the shooting:
"Ms. Alvar opened the door and Officer Kay saw Patrick O'Grady standing in the bathroom. Officer Kay then saw Patrick O'Grady turn and grab a gun from the bathroom counter and point it at the officer. At that time, Officer Kay drew his gun and fired one shot in the direction of Patrick O'Grady, who was struck by the bullet."
The bathroom was searched by three officers without finding a weapon. The fourth search somehow turned up one. The gun "found" in the bathroom apparently belonged to Deputy Donald Beasley of the El Paso County Sheriff's Department. The Sheriff's Department is the "outside agency" that investigated the shooting. Video footage could have cleared this all up, but Officer Kay's body camera was never activated.

Officer Robert Olsen of Georgia shot naked, unarmed Anthony Hill last year, responding to call about a man acting "deranged" and "crawling on the floor." According to Olsen, Hill charged at him after being ordered to stop. Olsen has been indicted for multiple charges, including two counts of felony murder.

In the same month Officer Olsen killed Anthony Hill (March 2015), Kansas police shot a naked woman in her own bed. The twist: she had a gun. The other twist? She was ordered by officers to show it to them.
Gardner police got a 911 call on March 26, 2015 that Deanne Choate, 54, had been drinking alcohol, was suicidal and had a gun. When police arrived they immediately handcuffed and arrested Choate's boyfriend and removed him from the home, then found Deanne Choate sleeping naked in her bed, her daughter says in the Feb. 25 complaint.

After waking her up, officers questioned her for eight minutes, repeatedly asking, "Where is the gun?"

"Deanne was obviously not carrying or concealing on her person any type of weapon," her daughter says.

"During this time, officers came and went from the room. They looked under the sheets of the bed." They stayed in the room "with the naked, 115-pound woman" and finally gave her a sweatshirt to wear, according to the complaint.

After repeatedly demanding, "Where is the gun?" and "We know you have a gun," Deanne finally "complied with officers' request and produced a handgun, stating, 'Oh, here it is.'"

Then they shot her to death.
July 2014: Haywood (CA) police officers shoot a naked, unarmed man to death, apparently for refusing to come out of a "barricaded" room (furniture was pushed up against the door). Not that the "barricade" was that much of an impediment. It didn't prevent two officers from entering the room and shooting Jeffrey McKinney.

October 2012: A University of South Alabama campus police officer shoots and kills a naked, unarmed student -- one who had banged on the window of the campus police station and made "threatening" moves toward the officer. The officer described him as "muscular." The student's parents agree with the "muscular" part (he was a wrestler) but that he only stood 5'7" and weighed 135 pounds.

And on and on. It certainly doesn't make up a sizable percentage of police shootings but there have been enough of them that it's notable. Handling a person under the influence/suffering from mental illness is naturally going to be more unpredictable than confronting your normal, everyday perp. But the escalation from "this is going to be weird" to "this is going to require bullets" seems to skip a lot of steps in far too many instances.

Filed Under: austin, david joseph, geoffrey freeman, law enforcement, police


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  • identicon
    Capt ICE Enforcer, 5 Apr 2016 @ 3:36am

    College life

    I am sorry. But drunk and naked outside is a requirement for administration into most colleges.

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  • identicon
    Capt ICE Enforcer, 5 Apr 2016 @ 3:39am

    True blame.

    Hollywood is to blame for this. Ever since Full Metal Jacket came out. Everyone keeps thinking This is my rifle. This is my gun. This is for fighting. This is for fun. As you can tell, police have a lot to fear if they get the song wrong.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 3:56am

    In other news...

    A cop shot up his new high def TV. When asked why, he replied "Naked and Afraid came on and I just couldn't help myself."
    /nr

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  • icon
    Éibhear (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 4:04am

    Training

    Such a pity that it's so hard to train people in how to de-escalate.

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    • identicon
      David, 5 Apr 2016 @ 4:18am

      Re: Training

      It's safer for the police officers to escalate. They are trained in weapon use and of selected low intelligence. They are more likely to win a firefight than an argument.

      The longer they take before shooting people, the higher the probability that they'll get wounded first, with bullets or words.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 4:39am

        Re: Re: Training

        We are getting pretty poetic here. Aye?

        It is more of a problem with mentality. Shoot first, ask questions later is a good way for the gunner to stay safe and the people around, getting killed.

        The way NRA argues is not exactly helping with that issue.

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:00am

          Re: Re: Re: Training

          The way NRA argues is not exactly helping with that issue.


          You mean how they recommend not shooting or even pointing your gun at someone or even touching your gun unless your life is actively being threatened? You mean how they train gun owners how to de-escalate before resorting to violence?

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 7:17am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

            No, when the NRA writes laws for state and federal lawmakers to push through and get zero push back because they throw their members money against any rival candidate that takes on any firearm regulation. And you want to sit there and claim the NRA is just a education and training resource, they derail all serious talk when it comes to firearm safety for manufacturer profit

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:09am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

              they derail all serious talk when it comes to firearm safety for manufacturer profit
              So true! Just yesterday, my NRA-approved gun discharged on its own because the manufacturer placed their profits ahead of using quality parts and left out all the safeties because those were just too expensive. /sarc

              Firearms are designed to be safe for their wielder and innocents, and dangerous to the people against whom the wielder must use them. A manufacturer that intentionally designed a firearm that was needlessly dangerous to its wielder or innocents would lose sales to one who designed a quality weapon. Note the needlessly qualifier carefully. A dangerous weapon that reliably stops an attack may be more highly prized than a very safe weapon that does not reliably stop an attack, particularly if competent use by the wielder can minimize the danger to non-targets.

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              • identicon
                Dingledore the Flabberghaster, 5 Apr 2016 @ 9:00am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                "A dangerous weapon that reliably stops an attack"

                by "stops an attack", you mean successfully attacks?

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 12:17pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                  by "stops an attack", you mean successfully attacks?
                  No. In most places where the law permits private citizens to use deadly force, it is permitted for the purpose of stopping specific unlawful acts. Often, but not always, it is for stopping any of rape, murder, or kidnapping against oneself or an innocent third party. Some jurisdictions have slightly different rules, such as adding "unlawful use of deadly force" to the offense list, imposing a duty that the citizen attempt to retreat before resorting to violence, or defining specific types of locations where retreat is or is not required. Also, note that some jurisdictions consider "deadly force" to include force that would reasonably lead to serious bodily harm, even if it would not reasonably lead to imminent death.

                  Importantly, the lawful permission for deadly force ends when the unlawful act ceases. For example, if an attempted murderer surrenders and is reasonably not a threat, then the citizen is no longer permitted to use deadly force, even if deadly force would have been authorized if the attempted murderer had not surrendered. Therefore, a gun can stop an attack without killing the attacker, and sometimes without even wounding the attacker, if the presence of the gun and the implicit or explicit threat to use it can successfully prevent further unlawful action. The goal is to stop the attack, not to exact private retribution for attacks already concluded.

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            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:23am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

              The NRA is not the problem. You are the problem. The NRA is trying to support the 2nd Amendment, and you are trying to dismantle it because you are a coward American that will not support their nation.

              If you want to be a coward and not have a gun and and a desire to protect the nation from all enemies foreign or domestic then fine, but do not get in the way of the others that will!

              If you have the nerve to attack any of the rights protected in the Bill of Rights, then you have NO RIGHT to receive protection on any of your OTHER rights... like speech, voting, or not being made into a slave!

              The founders made it very clear what the 2nd was meant for and they also said that those who give up essential liberty for a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty or safety.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:46am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                Holy shit, the NRA is now paying shills to write techdirt comments. What else will they throw money at next?

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                • icon
                  dcfusor (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 9:35am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                  Some of us who use real traceable nicks or ID wonder how much Soros and pals are paying you to shill gun fear.
                  If you're not responsible to have firearm access, fine (please!), don't - but keep that to yourself.

                  Those of us who are responsible don't like having our freedoms taken because you can't imagine anything but the lowest common denominator. Projection much?

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              • identicon
                Dingledore the Flabberghaster, 5 Apr 2016 @ 9:19am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                The NRA is trying to support the 2nd Amendment

                Why is this automatically a good thing?

                I'm not actually arguing one way or the other here, just pointing out that "we must be able to do something because someone once said we could" is only one step away from "he started it". If there are perfectly valid arguments for gun ownership, then that's fine - make those arguments and be happy. But waving a 225 year old amendment that was a close contemporary to the Three-Fifths Compromise entirely ignores the certainty that any constitution best serves it's people as a living document.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 12:36pm

                  Three-Fifths Compromise (was Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training)

                  But waving a 225 year old amendment that was a close contemporary to the Three-Fifths Compromise entirely ignores the certainty that any constitution best serves it's people as a living document.
                  I interpret your phrasing to mean that you consider the Three-Fifths Compromise to have been a bad idea. Do you believe it should have been that slaves were counted as whole people or do you believe it should have been that slaves were not counted as people? If slaves were counted as people, then slave-owning states would have more legislative seats, despite not having more voters (as slaves were obviously not permitted to vote). In a perverse sense, it could have encouraged even more slave ownership, since having more slaves would afford the state more seats. If slaves were not counted as people, it would give the slave-owning states fewer legislative seats.

                  Put simply, do you think the slave-owning states should have had more power or less?

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                  • identicon
                    Dingledore the Flabberghaster, 5 Apr 2016 @ 4:03pm

                    Re: Three-Fifths Compromise (was Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training)

                    It's not that I believe that Three Fifths was a bad idea in itself - it was, after all, a compromise. It's that the Constitution and its associated documents were a product of their time and included things that would be completely unacceptable in modern times.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 10:10pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                  You ever look at a country where the government removes the citizens rights to own weapons? Especially in a police state.

                  There is a reason why Americans should universally support their 2nd amendment. Keeps them free from the worst excesses of a corrupt and criminal government.

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                  • identicon
                    Dingledore the Flabberghaster, 8 Apr 2016 @ 2:51am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                    Except it never has. The worst excesses keep getting worse and nobody tries to do anything about it (unless you're black, in which case...).

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                    • icon
                      Uriel-238 (profile), 8 Apr 2016 @ 12:55pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                      Actually people do try to do something about it. Only we're not always that smart or that organized and it often comes off as a crazy guy popping off or worse, the agent of a foreign belligerent.

                      There was the guy who immolated himself in protest. Despite an explanation that seemed considered and deliberate, he was still regarded as a wacko.

                      The People of the United States are, despite their many troubles and conflicts, a generally peaceful sort. We'd really rather not shoot back at law-enforcement. I think we're trying to rule out all non-violent resources (including merely suffering said excesses) before turning to violent solutions.

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                • icon
                  Uriel-238 (profile), 8 Apr 2016 @ 2:12pm

                  Supporting the Second Amendment

                  Questioning our bill of rights is usually the purview of scholars and Constitutional conventionists (that is, those who want to challenge the Constitution in its entirety). There are books about it, pro-, anti- or even without a clear slant.

                  The US right to bear arms is certainly worthy of challenge, even partially. Do we allow private parties to own nuclear weapons or bio agents? Can we enforce prohibitions regarding printed guns? Should the individual have the same access as does law enforcement and the military? Should a person be allowed to handle a loaded firearm while intoxicated? There is a lot of gray area and a lot of controversy as to what the right and proper answers are, what should be enforced and what can be enforced.

                  As a note, what the constitution says is not always reflected in our lawbooks. The process by which laws are challenged against the constitution requires that someone is taken to court for breaking the law, and the case be appealed to a high enough court to hear a constitutional challenge. As justices can be rather opinionated, whether or not restrictions on gun access are upheld or successfully appealed are about as varied from jurist to jurist as IP law opinions. The weaknesses of this process are plentiful, acknowledged and grumbled over, which is why the Mississippi Religious Freedom law, which allows discrimination against LGBT citizens in the alleged name of religious expression) hasn't yet been stricken down as a violation of the 14th amendment equal protection clause.

                  Among the many reasons the Second Amendment continues to be valid there are three that come to (my) mind, put in brief

                  ~ Personal Defense as a frontier nation, there are plenty of hazards about (mostly dangerous wildlife and vermin, though bandits and outlaws sometimes figure in). And the individual has a right to protect self, family, property and territory from such hazards.

                  ~ Keeping the government nervous The origin of the US is rife with state agencies having too little respect for the common individual from governing bodies. And our constitutional framers recognized that this is a ongoing problem, that rights, liberties and benefits will be encroached upon and denied by the government as they can get away with it, and as we're seeing today with our extensive police brutality problem.

                  ~ Liberty. Americans are allowed to own and use what they want unless there are clear grounds to deny it to them. But we're really bad at determining what is dangerous to the people and should be restricted. Worse yet, as Prohibition and the War on Drugs has shown, we suck even worse at figuring out how to control substances without heinous amounts of casualties. But considering how the public has freaked out over the telephone, radio, television, pornography, comic books, Elvis, Rock-&-Roll, Led Zeppelin, Dungeons & Dragons, marijuana, novels featuring adult situations, video games from Pacman to Call of Duty the internet, cell phones, sexting, and so on, both the government and the public have both demonstrated they have no qualifications to determine what is too dangerous for private ownership or not.

                  These are not to say that legalized guns are the best solution. Certainly our police seem eager to gun people down, armed or otherwise. But in challenging the second amendment or criminalizing weapons, we have to acknowledge these issues and preferably provide more effective alternatives to address them. The people of the US are skeptical things will get better with a disarmed public so we have to clarify the purpose that doing so serves, and how to address the problems we've faced before that led us to choosing to keep our public armed (ideally, armed and prepared for war.)

                  Tangent: I remain amused how military and assault are terms used to make weapons sound more dangerous, when civilian weapons tend to outperform the military counterparts. Military stuff is produced in mass by the lowest bidder. Civilian gear is made for a higher price point and is made to be customizable for the individual...and punch through an elephant if that's what you're hunting. And no civilian has need for a howitzer --or a nuke-- enough to actually buy one.)

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              • identicon
                Dingledore the Flabberghaster, 5 Apr 2016 @ 9:24am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                If you have the nerve to attack any of the rights protected in the Bill of Rights, then you have NO RIGHT to receive protection on any of your OTHER rights... like speech, voting, or not being made into a slave!


                Wow. Impassioned defending of the 2nd Amendment on one hand, whilst simultaneously tearing up and targeting a stream of urine on, at least, the 1st, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 13th, & 14th with the other.

                Most impressive.

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              • icon
                nasch (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 9:27am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                you are trying to dismantle it because you are a coward American that will not support their nation.

                This does not further the debate. (I hope) nobody around here is going to take you seriously with this kind of rhetoric.

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              • icon
                Richard (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 2:45pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                The NRA is not the problem. You are the problem. The NRA is trying to support the 2nd Amendment,

                The 2nd amendment is the problem. It is the biggest piece of collective stupidity ever enacted.

                From my side of the atlantic all the pro-gun arguments just look barking mad.

                The simplest solution to the problem is to remove the second amendment, put in really effective gun control and disarm the police.

                That, and only that would save many lives in America.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 5:00pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                  Guns are not the problem, neither are knives, or cars, or drugs or 2nd amendments.

                  Your simple solution is no solution because it doesn't deal with the intrinsic problem.

                  The intrinsic problem is people. It doesn't matter what you allow or ban. As long as people don't control themselves and take responsibility for their own actions, nothing will work work. As long as people want to look out only for themselves and their own, there will be conflicts of all sorts.

                  The tools are not the problem, it always comes back to the tool user.

                  There are many who just don't give a thought to anything other than their own pleasure (however that may manifest itself) and they will take what they want, when they want.

                  You can ban everything and they will still find a way to get what they want, banned or not.

                  Unfortunately, the "leaders" of society have demonstrated to everyone that getting what you want is an acceptable way of life. These "leaders" include (but not limited to) politicians, scientists, musicians, business owners, actors, criminals, police, military, pilots, sports stars.

                  You can add to this list as you will.

                  People are the problem and until we as individuals decide we want to change for the better, things are not going to change for the better.

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                  • icon
                    Uriel-238 (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:04pm

                    "People are the problem"

                    I get so much mileage out of this phrase:

                    We build a civilization with the people we have, not the people we wish we had.

                    And generally, it's the same sort of people with whom everyone else is building their civilization. We're neither especially bright nor especially dull.

                    We know people to be fairly altruistic regarding their top fifty facebook friends, and want to throw rocks at everyone else. When we pack them dense like in the urbs, that requires that they develop a greater sense of community (and that sense of community helps when strangers walk into rural towns).

                    Our politicians are being the same naked apes, and they have zero motivation to improve things. And that's because we've gamed the system so that their job is not to run the nation, but to get elected again. So that's all they do.

                    It's time to start the Rebel Alliance. And it's time to create a charter for what our new system will look like. There's been a lot of discussion already as to what would help (e.g. alternates to FPTP).

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                    • identicon
                      American, 6 Apr 2016 @ 9:11am

                      Re: People are the problem

                      We build a civilization with the people we have, not the people we wish we had.

                      How prolific that statement would be if we weren't faced with politicians with agendas not loyal to America and Americans.

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                  • identicon
                    Wendy Cockcroft, 7 Apr 2016 @ 6:13am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                    The intrinsic problem is people. It doesn't matter what you allow or ban. As long as people don't control themselves and take responsibility for their own actions, nothing will work work. As long as people want to look out only for themselves and their own, there will be conflicts of all sorts.

                    Sorry I can only give you one Insightful vote.

                    I don't like guns because I don't like violence. That said, I've seen some good cases made for keeping them for self-defence. Proper gun control would legally restrict gun ownership to sane, law-abiding citizens who have passed some kind of safety course, provided, perhaps, byt the NRA. Isn't gun safety what they are supposed to be about?

                    It's been argued that doing this won't affect the attitudes of criminals, who will simply flout the law, but we've also made theft and murder illegal, and criminals flout those laws. Should we make The Purge a real thing, in that case? By no means!

                    Well then, let's be reasonable about this, and make it both illegal and difficult for crazy, criminal, and untrained people to own a gun.

                    As for rising up against the government in the event that it becomes a tyranny, everyone who's tried it so far has been either killed or imprisoned. The Civil War was about the Southern states complaining about the Northern states passing laws they didn't want, if memory serves. Any attempt at planning and carrying out an armed rebellion is utterly doomed to failure.

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                    • identicon
                      Wendy Cockcroft, 7 Apr 2016 @ 6:13am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                      *by the NRA.

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                    • icon
                      Uriel-238 (profile), 7 Apr 2016 @ 9:50am

                      Crazy gun owners

                      Well then, let's be reasonable about this, and make it both illegal and difficult for crazy, criminal, and untrained people to own a gun.

                      As a crazy person (id est, with diagnoses by professionals) who is yet fairly harmless, I resent having my rights infringed further because you and other members of the public are frightened by mental illness.

                      And no, there's no litmus test to separate out the axe murderers from the rest of us.

                      As for rising up against the government in the event that it becomes a tyranny, everyone who's tried it so far has been either killed or imprisoned.

                      If I recall my history correctly, we here in the states had a problem with an oppressive power on that side of the pond and were able to cast off our shackles.

                      Want something more recent? Afghanistan appears to be resistant to foreign oppressors as well, whether Soviet or NATO, hence the struggle to smack down those pesky criminal terrorist types has been going on longer than the whole of WWII.

                      I am curious, though. You guys have a history where occasionally the big guy with the sword and armor and alleged divine-right to hew the rest of you down would get uppity and decide to kill and rape for his own pleasure. Did you just lie down and tolerate it? Or did you just spit in his tea when he wasn't looking, Nazi-occupied-Paris style?

                      If you ask Mexico (who love their guns as much as we love ours), they've had scads of oppressors, foreign and domestic, and those weapons have come in handy many times.

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                      • identicon
                        Dingledore the Flabberghaster, 8 Apr 2016 @ 3:00am

                        Re: Crazy gun owners

                        FYI, the War of Independence was before the 2nd Amendment. The horse had pretty much certainly already bolted.

                        And I'm pretty sure no US private citizens acting as a militia were sent to Afghanistan. You appear to be, correction, you are confusing the well armed militia with the state.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 10:14pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Training

                  The police would not be the ones that get disarmed, the people they currently murder with impunity are the ones that would be disarmed. The police are treated as above the laws so why would they be treated the same as everyone else in this case exactly?

                  A tyrannistic government disarms their populace then goes on a genocidal path wiping anyone and everyone they don't like. Germany, Russia, probably lots more countries if i cared to look up the history of them.

                  But I am sure the current horribly corrupt and criminal American government won't repeat history like they have been doing with everything else right? let's remove the last line of defense people have against criminals and let the criminals with badges protect them instead, when they are not murdering them of course.

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  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 4:35am

    "We're staying here until you give us the justification needed to shoot you."

    "During this time, officers came and went from the room. They looked under the sheets of the bed." They stayed in the room "with the naked, 115-pound woman" and finally gave her a sweatshirt to wear, according to the complaint.

    After repeatedly demanding, "Where is the gun?" and "We know you have a gun," Deanne finally "complied with officers' request and produced a handgun, stating, 'Oh, here it is.'"

    Then they shot her to death.


    Honestly it's hard to interpret that situation as anything but deliberate, pre-meditated murder.

    The woman was not armed when first apprehended, not restrained in any way, indicating that they didn't consider her a threat, and harassed until she produced the weapon being searched for, upon which she was killed.

    If they thought she was a threat, she would have been restrained.

    If they thought she might turn the gun on one of the officers, they wouldn't have left her in the same room or had her involved with the search, but would have moved her to a different location and left her under watch while they conducted the search.

    They were either just looking for an excuse to kill her, in which case murder charges should be brought against those involved, or so grossly incompetent that they let a 'dangerous suspect' not only get their hands on a weapon, but placed them in a situation that the 'dangerous suspect' would have been almost certain to be the first to find it, and had she had murderous intentions several deaths would have been highly likely, in which case they should be fired for gross negligence and incompetence at the least.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      David, 5 Apr 2016 @ 4:46am

      Re: "We're staying here until you give us the justification needed to shoot you."

      Honestly it's hard to interpret that situation as anything but deliberate, pre-meditated murder.

      Try harder, or you won't get a job as District Attorney.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:41am

      Re: "We're staying here until you give us the justification needed to shoot you."

      "in which case murder charges should be brought against those involved"

      That is not going to happen. They have an unions that will lie for them. That has powerful lawyers to deny deny deny. To make sure they get off without any punishment.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:46am

        Re: Re: "We're staying here until you give us the justification needed to shoot you."

        You'll note I said 'should', I'm fully aware that it won't happen that way, the story will be spun by the union and/or other officers at the scene that in every single case listed the person shot had it coming, or posed some sort of risk and the cop who pulled the trigger was not only justified in doing so, but had no other possible option that didn't involve someone in a body bag.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:08am

        Re: Re: "We're staying here until you give us the justification needed to shoot you."

        thankfully we have law abiding citizens willing to kill dirty cops.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 4:40am

    Not surprising

    Most cops are weaklings and cowards: afraid of everything, and far, FAR too stupid to distinguish an actual threat from something that isn't. Add to that their psychopathic, murderous tendencies, and well, a lot of naked people will be shot.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      icon
      Christopher (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 5:54am

      Re: Not surprising

      Says the anonymous coward from his basement.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Ninja (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:21am

      Re: Not surprising

      I wouldn't say that. I'd say that there is a portion big enough that hits the headlines and make a lot of noise but not "most". Still, the utter lack of punishment for these abusers and and the support the unions give to cops clearly in the wrong certainly has given law enforcement in general a very bad image.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:41am

        Re: Re: Not surprising

        Still, the utter lack of punishment for these abusers and and the support the unions give to cops clearly in the wrong certainly has given law enforcement in general a very bad image.

        And that right there is the problem the majority face in convincing people that the 'bad apples' really are the minority, and the majority are actually 'good guys'.

        If police actually cared to hold their own accountable, punish them for abuse of power/authority, then the public might be able to believe them when they point to the corrupt members of the profession and claim, 'They do not represent us'. By instead shielding those members, protecting them from being punished or even investigated however it's hard not to assume that the reason for that is because the majority do support such actions, even if they don't engage in them directly, which means the worst of the lot do accurately represent the majority.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Ninja (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 7:09am

          Re: Re: Re: Not surprising

          Again, I disagree. It's a problem of the higher echelon. Much like Ed Snowden was crucified for exposing malpractices the regular cop may actually be harassed if the leadership is engaged in such abuses or helps shielding the abusers from the consequences. It would be akin to blaming the Americans for the shit their Government is engaged worldwide when we know there are several problems even with the electoral system.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            That One Guy (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:37am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Not surprising

            Seems to be a bit of a 'Chicken or Egg' question, are the lower ranks taking their 'see nothing, say nothing, hear nothing' clues from the higher ups, or are the higher ups taking the clues from the rank and file?

            Personally my guess would be more than a little of both, the bosses don't feel like dealing with what it would take to get rid of a troublesome officer, primarily(I would guess) not wanting to have to admit that one of their 'fine, upstanding officers' isn't someone who deserves the position, while the rank and file either like being able to not have to worry about being 'professional' all the time, or are pressured to shut their mouths when others cross the line.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              Ninja (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 12:14pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Not surprising

              Agreed. I know some good cops from the local law enforcement and from the federal level. It is quite ugly in the upper steps of the ladder. One federal cop got transferred to increasingly more remote and dangerous areas despite she had kids and stuff like that because she refused to participate in a bribery scheme.

              It's hard to believe when the corporation (police departments and the likes) actually seems to protect abusers but we shouldn't be cynical. But I see your point. It's those cases where both are technically right and wrong.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            nasch (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 9:30am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Not surprising

            My impression is not only do most cops not actively work to stop the dirty, corrupt, or violent cops among them, they would actively resist attempts to increase accountability.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:04am

          Re: Re: Re: Not surprising

          It will either end in people dying in droves as they roll over and continue being murdered by badge wearing thugs, or people will start killing cops en masse.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 5:17am

    Obviously the naked guy was armed. Why, his penis looked like it could have been a gun! He might have even referred to it as his "crotch rocket"! How could that possibly NOT be a threat?

    /sarc

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 5:21am

    Thou shalt not murder, unless it is because of penis envy?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:30am

      Re:

      Ah... the age old cause of death... envy.

      Kain and Able right? Envy is a damn powerful sin leading to the majority of all human problems.

      There is even a commandment about it... thou shalt not covet.

      If you think about the ripple effect, envy causes more pain, death, and destruction than any other sin in existence!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ashwi (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 5:27am

    Honestly it's hard to interpret that situation as anything but deliberate, pre-meditated murder.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Quiet Lurcker, 5 Apr 2016 @ 5:27am

    Simple Question

    Some of these stories the cops came up with in this story were so obviously questionable, why didn't someone - another cop, the supervisors, the prosecutor (where involved), the judges (where involved), SOMEONE - suspect the cops of lying and follow up on it?

    And why weren't the cops in question using something at least approximating to common sense in these encounters? Last time I looked, non-lethal weapons were part of the standard uniform most places, yet they went for the lethal ones.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Christopher (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 5:55am

      Re: Simple Question

      Really? Which non-lethals can they carry? Please elaborate, along with the AG guidelines on when to use them where you saw this.

      Because really, I'd love to read it.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Ninja (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:19am

        Re: Re: Simple Question

        Although the non-lethality can be disputed you have plenty of options such as pepper spray, tasers (there are even long range ones!), rubber bullets and others. And common sense. You see a naked person while you are armored and armed you are in a clear advantage. And there are much less lethal ways of incapacitating people with a gun. Shooting the head certainly isn't one of these.

        But hey, cops are saints, aren't them?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:36am

          Re: Re: Re: Simple Question

          Damn straight... if a cops murders you, it's because you deserved it!

          I hate idiots like the one you are responding too.

          Government corruption is the leading cause of death of any kind. Corrupt government has literally murdered more innocent than ALL WAR and one of the reasons the 2nd was created per the founders.

          With the police going this far to destroy citizens we really need to evaluate how necessary the police for is while they are in this mindset.

          We should consider disbanding several of the most corrupt police departments as a BIG sign of how little we are doing to endure this garbage much longer. AND create a law that people working in the public sector cannot unionize period!

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:10am

        Re: Re: Simple Question

        you sound like you would fit in withe the KGB or gestapo shilling like that.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ninja (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 5:48am

    Gardner police got a 911 call on March 26, 2015 that Deanne Choate, 54, had been drinking alcohol, was suicidal and had a gun.

    Wow, genius! Call the police and say you are naked and you get a free ride to the other side. Easy suicide. /sarcasm

    I'm sure shooting a person that is deemed suicidal will help tons.

    In any case, if law enforcement was actually focused on their job, which is protecting the citizens, there wouldn't be so many cases of force abuse. But instead they are focusing on their own integrity and in a war against the citizenry.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anomynuos Crowad, 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:35am

    "if law enforcement was actually focused on their job, which is protecting the citizens"

    Nah, their job is enforcing laws. There isn't a police department around that still uses the old "protect and serve" motto. They protect the rights of property holders, and they protect some nebulous concept of "public order", and they protect themselves.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:38am

    As a nation we need police reform. Websites like photography is not a crime and cop block have opened my eyes to the wide spread abuse by the people we need to trust the most.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Iggy, 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:39am

    Self Serve

    The law is for you and there are plenty of them. There's a law that covers just about everything you do or contemplate doing (conspiracy]. The wealthy and well connected are also exempt.

    Don't call the police. The supreme court found that they are not obligated to help you. When you call them you risk theft (civil forfeiture), arrest if you are breaking one of America's laws for all seasons or death.

    Don't answer their questions. They're already helping themselves.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 7:17am

    this what happens in a society that is given to allowing police to do more and more, with more and more weapons, turning said society into a police state! add in that the officers in every case have no care about the lives of anyone other than themselves and the whole aim of the game is to become top of the leader board for who has killed the most and got away with it!!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    dolz (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 7:19am

    Calling Rep. Ken Buck

    While you’re writing your legislation to make it a hate crime to target the police, perhaps you could add a section to make it a hate crime when the police kill naked folks.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 7:57am

    For a second there I read "Austin" as "Austrian". Well, no surprises here.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:02am

    staring at an officer with defiance in your eyes is grounds for a summary execution these days.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    jupiterkansas (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 8:18am

    That PCP chart is horrible. Why does it go up to 250 million people? You can compare all kinds of things against 250 million people and get a flat line. Techdirt readership for example.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 10:06am

    It's obvious, cops are cowards. Anyone can be brave when they can kill another person with little to no worries of recrimination.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 10:58am

    Graph

    "Here's a rather boring graph showing the "rise" in PCP use over the years."

    I could make lots of graphs boring by picking poor values for the y-axis like that. And the data is pretty much impossible; in some years the number of people who have "ever used" went up by several times more than the number of people who used in the "past year". This leads me to believe that the margin of error is large enough as to make this useless.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      nasch (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 11:08am

      Re: Graph

      And the data is pretty much impossible; in some years the number of people who have "ever used" went up by several times more than the number of people who used in the "past year".

      It's hard to say because the data is in three year increments. If we had every year it might make more sense but from this we can't tell what's going on in the two years not included. Not to say that's a great way to present data, just that it's not impossible like it looks.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 5 Apr 2016 @ 11:22am

    Don't use terrible plots

    That graph says nothing. Why is it in the article?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    seedeevee (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 1:19pm

    Haywood should be Hayweird

    But, really, it should be Hayward. Us locals just call it Hayweird.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Pronounce (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 1:44pm

    This is the Mandate

    Society as a whole wants to be protected from all harm, and so they empower a police force with a mandate to remove all possibility of harm. Given this mandate it's easy to justify lethal force on those who deviate from the norm.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Glenn, 5 Apr 2016 @ 2:07pm

    It seems that ALL police now think that their lives are more important than those of the people they were hired to "serve and protect". When "good" cops don't prosecute the "bad" cops and remove them from a job they don't deserve and cannot handle, then they just become bad cops themselves.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Uriel-238 (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 3:49pm

    The Death of Deanne Choate

    Police said that an officer fired at her after she refused to drop the gun she was holding.

    District Attorney Steve Howe said Monday that the officer’s use of force was justified under Kansas law and no charges would be filed.


    Wow. One of these things is not like the other.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Uriel-238 (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 5:09pm

    Gardner discourages its police from using de-escalation tactics with suspects, preferring a "shoot-first-ask-questions-later" policy, Michele Choate says.

    Is it possible that the review process (e.g. paperwork) of police killings and firearms discharges is significantly shorter and easier than managing live suspects or even witness testimonies?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Justme, 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:20pm

    Aggressive Cops. .

    The increasingly aggressive behavior is in no small part a result of the war on drugs, which attracts the most aggressive officers and it is those officers that are most likely to get noticed and prompted. So the people currently in high level position today more often then not worked in drug enforcement.

    Also under the normal structure of law enforcement, the chief of police or sheriff is usually accountable to an elected official(mayor), which gives citizens a way to demand changes when required. But with regional drug strike forces that do not directly answer to any one local elected official, citizens have little ability to effect change.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      nasch (profile), 5 Apr 2016 @ 6:33pm

      Re: Aggressive Cops. .


      Also under the normal structure of law enforcement, the chief of police or sheriff is usually accountable to an elected official(mayor)


      If I understand correctly, the chief of police is typically a city position and answers to a mayor, city council, or the like, and sheriff is a county position and is itself an elected office.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Apr 2016 @ 1:27am

    A significant factor is the way that American law enforcement are trained, which is to aim for the victim's heart/center of chest and fire numerous shots in rapid succession. Shooting to wound is not allowed, nor are warning shots.

    Ironically, increased restrictions on the use of police batons (such as forbidding head strikes) that were enacted over the past few decades in the aim of public safety has had the opposite effect, encouraging American police to use clubs less and guns more.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    NO Hillary for Prez, 6 Apr 2016 @ 8:53am

    Accountability for Hostile LE Policies

    The fact that no one can be sure 100% of the time how an officer is going to respond to the plethora of situations they respond to, but the microscope should be on policies handed down by the highest elements of the federal and state goverment to be sure the policies are not intrinsically hostile toward Americans to begin with.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 6 Apr 2016 @ 10:05am

    Current practice demonstrates the converse of Maxim 28

    Maxim 28: If the price of collateral damage is high enough, you might be able to get paid to bring ammunition home with you [2011-09-07].

    Despite the mercenary references, the cited comic is specifically about that policy in the context of law enforcement. Senior leadership rewards squads that complete their arrests without resorting to violence.

    In the real world, current practice is that the price of collateral damage is often zero (no punishment, no reward) and sometimes negative (rewarded for causing collateral damage), so why not engage in overkill? If there is no external reward for being careful, and there might be an external penalty for caution, why be careful at all?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    ahmad, 18 Dec 2016 @ 6:33am

    this is foreign agenda

    The white loyal americans should reject gun-control. The guns are your friends, you loyal americans.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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