Las Vegas Sun

September 19, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

Police face difficult challenges

Another view?

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In response to John Walsh’s letter, “Baffled by process on police shootings”:

I was an officer for 30 years. As one who has experienced these situations:

• At times officers have a split second to make a life-or-death decision.

• Pepper spray doesn’t always incapacitate a person.

• Tasers are not appropriate measures in certain cases.

• All officers don’t carry rubber bullets.

• Many incidents occur in a house or building out of sight of the vehicle’s dash camera. Officers can’t just drive their cars into the living room to accommodate some people.

• Often by the time you realize the “perp” has a gun, it’s too late.

• Why should we citizens lament the shooting of someone who refuses to comply with simple orders from a police officer?

• Why should we taxpayers foot the bill for families of perps or individuals who refuse, of their own accord, to obey simple commands issued by a police officer?

If Mr. Walsh and others of the same view feel they could reason with an unreasonable person, then they should apply for a position as a police officer.

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  1. God bless the men in blue and the letter writer too!

    CarmineD

  2. An excellent letter! In so many cases, poor decisions by the eventual shooting victim have limited the non-lethal options available to police officers.

  3. Just the other day, two more police officers were shot & killed in the line of duty in Kansas. Maybe if they had been a little quicker on the trigger, they would still be alive today. It's easy for John to judge sitting safe, snug and secure in his living room, but what's that old saying? "I'd rather be alive and judged by 12 then be dead and carried by 6?" I say, "To Hell with the Monday Morning Quarterbacks!"

  4. "Why should we citizens lament the shooting of someone who refuses to comply with simple orders from a police officer? . . . . .If Mr. Walsh and others of the same view feel they could reason with an unreasonable person, then they should apply for a position as a police officer."

    Sprague -- spoken like a true career public servant who forgot long ago who he worked for. I've encountered Metro's bullies with badges and found nothing about them worthy of any respect. An officer's "simple command" is to be obeyed only if it's lawful. But so long as none of your ilk are criminally convicted of perjuring your oaths -- a felony -- and the herd goes along with you, the odds are in your favor. A tragedy for all of us as your police state burgeons.

    "In so many cases, poor decisions by the eventual shooting victim have limited the non-lethal options available to police officers."

    pisces -- right, like Gibson, the perfect object for Metro's attention, unarmed and sitting in his car, hurting no one. Get a grip on what it means to be a citizen and you may find credibility here yet.

    "Just the other day, two more police officers were shot & killed in the line of duty in Kansas..."

    lvfacts -- there's a flipside posters like you refuse to mention, like that recent Ohio incident @ http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2012/dec...

    "If the exercise of constitutional rights will thwart the effectiveness of a system of law enforcement, then there is something very wrong with that system." -- Escobedo v. State of Illinois, 378 U.S. 478, 490 (1964)

  5. Policemen and womem are doing a great job overall, across the country.Without them we all would need to be packing. As the old saying goes, "Don't judge until you've walked a mile in my shoes".

  6. "Policemen and womem are doing a great job overall," @ samspeaks

    Sam: Thanks for including women officers; I should have too!!

    CarmineD

  7. Andrew, as a former Peace Officer and former federal agent, I don't completely agree. What if I don't hear the commands? What if I don't know you're a cop? What if I'm not aware of the danger? Shoot now? On the other hand, put me on the jury and most (almost all) of the lawsuits would be decided in favor of Metro with the plaintiffs responsible for our litigation expenses. Clearly if the plaintiffs are Perp's familia, forget the lawsuit. If they are a SUSPECT's family, maybe but usually not. If they are bystanders, maybe but maybe not. Life has risks. Going to the grocery store has risks. If you as a bystander are hurt by a "stray bullet" you're gonna have to show why you didn't get out of the way.