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Mehserle found guilty; Oakland (relatively) safe for now. [BART shooting]

mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
edited November 2010 in Debate and/or Discourse
So, in an unexpected turn, Johannes Mehserle was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. This was, of course, the lowest charge the jury was given to convict on, with the highest being second-degree murder (the judge smacked down the prosecutions attempt to include first-degree murder, which was absurd anyway). He faces two to four years in prison.

I'm not finding the same story again, but apparently this was the first cop convicted in shooting in Los Angeles (the case was moved there from Oakland, for obvious reasons) in over two decades (since 1983). So...yeah.

Personally, I'm pretty happy with the outcome. Honestly, I was (sadly) happy just to see him charged, and have to spend a year in jail during the trial...this is more than I'd ever have expected given the circumstances. To see an actual conviction? I'd never have bet on it, and most of the analyses prior to the verdict were suggesting an acquittal was absolutely expected. Juries just do not convict cops for the crazy shit they do while wearing a uniform, especially if there's any way they can justify a use of force.

The actual charge they convicted on is appropriate, as well...the entire idea of second-degree murder was absurd, and the prosecution never had a chance of proving such. This was almost certainly a ploy to try and force a plea bargain rather than risk a verdict...glad it failed.

Still, what Mehserle did was illegal. Even assuming you believe he intended to use his Taser (his explanation of the incident, which I am inclined to believe for various reasons) the use of a Taser in this situation was entirely inappropriate. It doesn't matter that he didn't intend to fire his "real" gun, it doesn't matter that he had no intention of killing Grant, the simple fact is that even the use of the Taser was grossly negligent in this situation, posed real risk of harm to Grant, and thus the death of Grant was criminal.
Spoiler:

I honestly don't even give a shit if he gets off with time served (if the judge is somehow allowed to go below the minimum 2-year sentence, which I doubt). Simply having a jury of his peers look at him (and, indirectly, every other cop out there) and say "hey, you, fuckhead...that shit was absolutely unacceptable" is necessary.

Plus, a sweet felony conviction (involuntary manslaughter is a felony, right?) means that it's entirely unlikely he'll wind up a cop anywhere else, ever again. And, while I'm not sure how California handles this, it's entirely likely this guy will not legally touch a handgun for a very long time, if ever again.

This also reduces (though probably doesn't eliminate) the odds that Oakland will burn to the ground tonight. A plus, to be sure.


Sorry to make a third "cops gone wild" thread in like a week, but I felt this deserved its own. It's just...I don't know, it feels like a big deal.


Old thread here.


EDIT: Also, I don't mean to imply by the title that no cops will agree with this verdict. But seriously, a guy could be charged with sodomizing a handcuffed guy with a broomstick then shooting him 37 times (maybe after tasing him a couple times first, for fun) and far too man cops would jump up and claim "we don't have all the facts, man!" So yeah. I can see more than a few taking exception for the very idea of a cop being found guilty of homicide for the discharge of a weapon while in uniform, pretty much regardless of the circumstances.

mcdermott on
Spoiler:
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Posts

  • edited July 2010
    I'm kind of curious, what happens to cops when they go to prison? Do they get kept in segregation for the duration of their sentence, or are they put in gen pop and hopefully their previous occupation remains a secret or what?

  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    hotlunch wrote: »
    I'm kind of curious, what happens to cops when they go to prison? Do they get kept in segregation for the duration of their sentence, or are they put in gen pop and hopefully their previous occupation remains a secret or what?
    Could someone please explain to me why we worry so much more about a cop who commits a crime and goes to prison than we do anyone else who commits a crime and goes to prison?

    I mean, if anyone else gets treated poorly by their fellow criminals, we don't worry about it, or we say they deserve it because they're criminals; we even joke about them getting raped. But a cop being at risk for the same thing? All of a sudden it's a Big Deal, and they need protection.

  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    This verdict basically proves that it's impossible for a cop to commit murder on the job. Like, legally impossible.

  • BerenBeren Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    From BoingBoing:
    Mehserle has been found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Mehserle could get 2, 3 or 4 years for involuntary manslaughter plus 3, 4 or 10 years for using a gun. "That means the minimum total sentence that Judge Robert Perry could impose would be five years, and the maximum would be 14 years."

    So apparently it's longer.

  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    hotlunch wrote: »
    I'm kind of curious, what happens to cops when they go to prison? Do they get kept in segregation for the duration of their sentence, or are they put in gen pop and hopefully their previous occupation remains a secret or what?

    Could someone please explain to me why we worry so much more about a cop who commits a crime and goes to prison than we do anyone else who commits a crime and goes to prison?

    Because our goal should be to prevent rape and murder in our prisons, and part of how you would do that would be to identify those individuals most likely to suffer rape or murder in prison and take steps to proactively protect them.

    Obviously every prisoner is entitled to a certain level of protection from this as well (though they don't receive it), but when you have a prisoner who is almost guaranteed to be assaulted constantly the only reasonable course of action is to find a way to segregate/protect him.

    I mean, unless you just have an irrational hatred of cops.
    Spoiler:



    And to answer the question, yes I'm pretty sure it's they'll choose a facility and arrangement within that facility where they can reasonably segregate him and/or otherwise improve his safety.

    Spoiler:
  • edited July 2010
    Honestly? I want this fucker to go to gen pop and be subjected to the worst of our justice system. I think the way anyone gets treated in prison is fucking awful, but if anyone deserves it, its a cop who abuses his power.

    I ask what will happen to him not because I want him to be safe and cozy, but because I have no idea what will happen and am legitimately curious

  • matt has a problemmatt has a problem Six pack on a dick Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    This verdict basically proves that it's impossible for a cop to commit murder on the job. Like, legally impossible.
    No, it proves when a cop commits manslaughter on the job, he gets convicted of manslaughter.

    h1DI1.jpg
    All my fuckin life I lived a normal fuckin life
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    This verdict basically proves that it's impossible for a cop to commit murder on the job. Like, legally impossible.

    I don't see how this is true, unless you think the prosecutor had any chance whatsoever of proving intent (to kill, that is) beyond reasonable doubt.

    Which he didn't.

    I'll agree, however, that absent a confession or unearthing some kind of explicit statement of intent (voice, written, internet, something) it is indeed impossible to do so. However, this proves that it is possible to convict a cop for homicide for an on-the-job shooting, even in a situation where it's at least possible (if not entirely reasonable) for some middle-class suburban fuckhead to maybe find a way to justify a use of force in the situation at hand.

    So, you know, glass half full and all.

    Beren wrote: »
    From BoingBoing:
    Mehserle has been found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Mehserle could get 2, 3 or 4 years for involuntary manslaughter plus 3, 4 or 10 years for using a gun. "That means the minimum total sentence that Judge Robert Perry could impose would be five years, and the maximum would be 14 years."

    So apparently it's longer.

    Man, I had totally heard that too...I just completely spaced it. so yeah, 5-14 years. If you had told me a year ago that this guy would get any time at all, let alone upwards of half a decade, I'd have said you were fucking nuts.

    Spoiler:
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    hotlunch wrote: »
    Honestly? I want this fucker to go to gen pop and be subjected to the worst of our justice system. I think the way anyone gets treated in prison is fucking awful, but if anyone deserves it, its a cop who abuses his power.

    I ask what will happen to him not because I want him to be safe and cozy, but because I have no idea what will happen and am legitimately curious
    He'll be sentenced to five years at the state equivalent of a club fed (minimum security, full of amenities, segregated living). He'll serve maybe three years of that, but it will probably be more like twelve to eighteen months. If the courts actually go through with their orders to the state to reduce the prison population, he will doubtlessly be one of the people set free.

  • Just Like ThatJust Like That Registered User
    edited July 2010
    Well damn, it only took what... video footage from 3 or 4 different angles and dozens of witnesses to convict this guy? I swear you need absolutely undeniable evidence before anyone will even consider charging a cop with anything.

    For those who don't know about this or haven't seen the footage:

  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    hotlunch wrote: »
    Honestly? I want this fucker to go to gen pop and be subjected to the worst of our justice system. I think the way anyone gets treated in prison is fucking awful, but if anyone deserves it, its a cop who abuses his power.

    I ask what will happen to him not because I want him to be safe and cozy, but because I have no idea what will happen and am legitimately curious

    Actually, I'd put corrections officers who abuse their power well ahead of cops on that front. Though perhaps you're sort of lumping the two together.

    Just sayin'.

    Spoiler:
  • FeralFeral Who needs a medical license when you've got style? Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    This is a satisfactory outcome.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch, man" fallacy.
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    This verdict basically proves that it's impossible for a cop to commit murder on the job. Like, legally impossible.
    No, it proves when a cop commits manslaughter on the job, he gets convicted of manslaughter.
    Under what circumstances would you say a cop could be convicted of murder on the job?

    Because nowhere on the list is "executes a restrained young man lying on the ground who has just been searched by another officer while being recorded from multiple angles in front of dozens of witnesses."

    I mean, I think the only rational response to this is to not allow cops to carry tazers.

  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    hotlunch wrote: »
    Honestly? I want this fucker to go to gen pop and be subjected to the worst of our justice system. I think the way anyone gets treated in prison is fucking awful, but if anyone deserves it, its a cop who abuses his power.

    I ask what will happen to him not because I want him to be safe and cozy, but because I have no idea what will happen and am legitimately curious
    He'll be sentenced to five years at the state equivalent of a club fed (minimum security, full of amenities, segregated living). He'll serve maybe three years of that, but it will probably be more like twelve to eighteen months. If the courts actually go through with their orders to the state to reduce the prison population, he will doubtlessly be one of the people set free.
    Also, once he gets out, he will move to have his record expunged, and it almost certainly will be. It would not surprise me in the least if he were working as a police officer again within the next five years.

  • matt has a problemmatt has a problem Six pack on a dick Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    This verdict basically proves that it's impossible for a cop to commit murder on the job. Like, legally impossible.
    No, it proves when a cop commits manslaughter on the job, he gets convicted of manslaughter.
    Under what circumstances would you say a cop could be convicted of manslaughter on the job?

    Because nowhere on the list is "executes a restrained young man lying on the ground who has just been searched by another officer while being recorded from multiple angles in front of dozens of witnesses."

    I mean, I think the only rational response to this is to not allow cops to carry tazers.
    When he accidentally causes the death of someone, as happened here. Execution implies intent. He was struggling with someone he was arresting and he pulled the wrong weapon. It's still not murder. If he'd stood the guy against the wall, pulled his gun and put one between the guys eye's, yes, that would be murder.

    h1DI1.jpg
    All my fuckin life I lived a normal fuckin life
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    This verdict basically proves that it's impossible for a cop to commit murder on the job. Like, legally impossible.
    No, it proves when a cop commits manslaughter on the job, he gets convicted of manslaughter.
    Under what circumstances would you say a cop could be convicted of manslaughter on the job?

    Because nowhere on the list is "executes a restrained young man lying on the ground who has just been searched by another officer while being recorded from multiple angles in front of dozens of witnesses."

    I mean, I think the only rational response to this is to not allow cops to carry tazers.
    When he accidentally causes the death of someone, as happened here. Execution implies intent. He was struggling with someone he was arresting and he pulled the wrong weapon. It's still not murder. If he'd stood the guy against the wall, pulled his gun and put one between the guys eye's, yes, that would be murder.
    I guess that means that I am currently "struggling" against gravity. Also, against air pressure. Also, against the police officer on the street thirteen floors below me.

  • HachfaceHachface Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    I know we've hashed out the facts of this particular shooting to death, but even the use of his taser in that situation would have been utterly indefensible. Like, if he did actually use it taser he should have been fired just for that.

  • poshnialloposhniallo Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    hotlunch wrote: »
    Honestly? I want this fucker to go to gen pop and be subjected to the worst of our justice system. I think the way anyone gets treated in prison is fucking awful, but if anyone deserves it, its a cop who abuses his power.

    I ask what will happen to him not because I want him to be safe and cozy, but because I have no idea what will happen and am legitimately curious
    He'll be sentenced to five years at the state equivalent of a club fed (minimum security, full of amenities, segregated living). He'll serve maybe three years of that, but it will probably be more like twelve to eighteen months. If the courts actually go through with their orders to the state to reduce the prison population, he will doubtlessly be one of the people set free.

    How many times have you been inside a prison or worked or lived with ex-cons, Thanatos?

    Don't do that bullshit where people pretend prison can be a walk in the park. It never ever is.

    I figure I could take a bear.
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Can anyone give me a good reason why we shouldn't take tazers away from law enforcement officers?

  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA
    edited July 2010
    So he had the guy on the ground

    A cop had his knee on the guy's head

    There was no reason anyone could claim he was a threat to anyone

    A cop draws his gun and fires.

    And that's involuntary?

    He chose to use a weapon with lethal capability on someone who posed no threat

    But he didn't mean to kill the guy?


    Tell me what I would get to plead if I walked up to a random person who was, I don't know, suntanning on the beach, face down. I pull a gun and shoot them. That's not murder? That's involuntary because I only meant to use the hollow point round to maim, not kill?


    What the fuck?

    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • HachfaceHachface Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Can anyone give me a good reason why we shouldn't take tazers away from law enforcement officers?

    What if we totally replace guns with tasers?

  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    poshniallo wrote: »
    How many times have you been inside a prison or worked or lived with ex-cons, Thanatos?

    Don't do that bullshit where people pretend prison can be a walk in the park. It never ever is.
    Relative to what the kid he shot would be if their situations had been reversed?

  • Phoenix-DPhoenix-D Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Can anyone give me a good reason why we shouldn't take tazers away from law enforcement officers?

    Because for the non-idiots and non-douchebags, its a safer method than the alternatives? Granted some of them use it too much, and the manufacturer is fucking crazy, but it still has a use.

  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Hachface wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Can anyone give me a good reason why we shouldn't take tazers away from law enforcement officers?
    What if we totally replace guns with tasers?
    I would be fine with that.

  • FeralFeral Who needs a medical license when you've got style? Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    When he accidentally causes the death of someone, as happened here. Execution implies intent. He was struggling with someone he was arresting and he pulled the wrong weapon. It's still not murder.

    In order to believe that this wasn't murder, you'd have to assume a level of incompetence that is in and of itself deeply disturbing.

    Personally, I'm happy the guy got convicted of anything at all, because I was really scared that he was going to walk. But let's not kid ourselves here - if it were actually involuntary manslaughter, he would have walked.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch, man" fallacy.
  • ThanatosThanatos Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Phoenix-D wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Can anyone give me a good reason why we shouldn't take tazers away from law enforcement officers?
    Because for the non-idiots and non-douchebags, its a safer method than the alternatives? Granted some of them use it too much, and the manufacturer is fucking crazy, but it still has a use.
    Yes, but its mere existence means that a cop can literally get away with murder. It is physically impossible to convict a cop of murder, now, because they can always fall back on the tazer defense.

  • HachfaceHachface Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Hachface wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Can anyone give me a good reason why we shouldn't take tazers away from law enforcement officers?
    What if we totally replace guns with tasers?
    I would be fine with that.

    They'd still use their tasers way more frequently than they would have used their gun.

  • FeralFeral Who needs a medical license when you've got style? Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Pheezer wrote: »
    Tell me what I would get to plead if I walked up to a random person who was, I don't know, suntanning on the beach, face down. I pull a gun and shoot them. That's not murder? That's involuntary because I only meant to use the hollow point round to maim, not kill?


    What the fuck?

    Some people will posit extraordinarily unlikely scenarios in order to justify maintaining a shadow of a doubt of guilt even when there is no rational reason to do so, if it confirms their preexisting biases.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch, man" fallacy.
  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA
    edited July 2010
    Phoenix-D wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Can anyone give me a good reason why we shouldn't take tazers away from law enforcement officers?

    Because for the non-idiots and non-douchebags, its a safer method than the alternatives? Granted some of them use it too much, and the manufacturer is fucking crazy, but it still has a use.

    Except that it gives cops an excuse to escalate the situation. It's "non-lethal" except for when it occasionally causes heart failure, so it gets used in places where the cop couldn't justify using a pistol, which then results in a situation where using the pistol becomes necessary.

    Yeah ideally they wouldn't use it except as a substitute for the pistol. But it gets used where the pistol wouldn't be, all the fucking time. And then it gets to serve as a convenient excuse in this situation.

    Tell me, do police carry their pistols with a round chambered, safety off? Or did this cop have to override his safety to pull the trigger? Did he have to chamber a round first?

    If he had to do either, even with a grip safety, he knew he wasn't holding a fucking tazer.

    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    This verdict basically proves that it's impossible for a cop to commit murder on the job. Like, legally impossible.
    No, it proves when a cop commits manslaughter on the job, he gets convicted of manslaughter.
    Under what circumstances would you say a cop could be convicted of murder on the job?

    Because nowhere on the list is "executes a restrained young man lying on the ground who has just been searched by another officer while being recorded from multiple angles in front of dozens of witnesses."

    Other than "executes" (your words, and not proven) none of what you just said there implies intent. Which is what's missing for a murder conviction.

    This is also part of why it takes so many videos/witnesses/etc. to convict a cop who shoots somebody on the job; one of the tougher hurdles in a "normal" murder case (proving that they even killed the person) is already cleared, but you're in a situation where the accused is in a position where he is relatively routinely authorized to use deadly force.

    So you're stuck trying to prove things like intent and/or negligence, rather than simply "this dude shot this other dude, no really." Of course he shot the guy.
    I mean, I think the only rational response to this is to not allow cops to carry tazers.

    This position is gaining more traction, I think.
    I know we've hashed out the facts of this particular shooting to death, but even the use of his taser in that situation would have been utterly indefensible.

    Agreed, but the fact that twelve jurors managed to agree on this as well is pretty impressive to me, and gives me at least a faint glimmer of hope on this front.
    Yes, but its mere existence means that a cop can literally get away with murder. It is physically impossible to convict a cop of murder, now, because they can always fall back on the tazer defense.

    And still get convicted of manslaughter, and face 5-14 years in prison? Honestly, given the (relative) rarity of cops just up and offing somebody for no good reason, I can't work up a whole lot of outrage over this.

    Spoiler:
  • Just Like ThatJust Like That Registered User
    edited July 2010
    When he accidentally causes the death of someone, as happened here. Execution implies intent. He was struggling with someone he was arresting and he pulled the wrong weapon. It's still not murder. If he'd stood the guy against the wall, pulled his gun and put one between the guys eye's, yes, that would be murder.

    How does a 2 year veteran cop accidentally pull a gun instead of a taser? Is it that hard to tell the difference, especially when you have the time to make sure? We're talking about the difference between killing somebody and incapacitating him. The guy was subdued by multiple officers.

  • FeralFeral Who needs a medical license when you've got style? Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Pheezer wrote: »
    Tell me, do police carry their pistols with a round chambered, safety off? Or did this cop have to override his safety to pull the trigger? Did he have to chamber a round first?

    A lot of handguns commonly used by police don't have external safeties, and yes it is a common practice to keep a round chambered.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch, man" fallacy.
  • PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA
    edited July 2010
    When he accidentally causes the death of someone, as happened here. Execution implies intent. He was struggling with someone he was arresting and he pulled the wrong weapon. It's still not murder. If he'd stood the guy against the wall, pulled his gun and put one between the guys eye's, yes, that would be murder.

    How does a 2 year veteran cop accidentally pull a gun instead of a taser? Is it that hard to tell the difference, especially when you have the time to make sure? We're talking about the difference between killing somebody and incapacitating him. The guy was subdued by multiple officers.

    Not only that but think about what it takes to fire a pistol

    I cannot imagine that it's standard protocol for them to carry a pistol with a round in the chamber and the safety off. I guess it's possible but that would be astounding to me.

    It's not like he even drew and fired so quickly that he didn't know what was in his hand. He aimed first. He would have missed if he hadn't. By the time you've aimed, you know what you're holding.

    He wasn't trying to quick draw against a violent drunk holding a bowie knife, he had all the time in the world. In fact, he had no reason to draw anything, but even if:

    Even if he drew the taser
    And chose to fire it

    Knowing that sometimes people die after being tasered

    And everyone fucking knows that sometimes people die after being tasered

    Even if he purposefully tasered an incapacitated individual, rather than purposefully shooting him from behind, it would still be fucking murder.

    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
  • Raiden333Raiden333 Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/livenow?id=7544765

    Just in case anyone wants a live stream of the pot slowly coming to a boil.

    camo_sig2.png
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Pheezer wrote: »
    So he had the guy on the ground

    A cop had his knee on the guy's head

    There was no reason anyone could claim he was a threat to anyone

    A cop draws his gun and fires.

    And that's involuntary?

    He chose to use a weapon with lethal capability on someone who posed no threat

    But he didn't mean to kill the guy?


    Tell me what I would get to plead if I walked up to a random person who was, I don't know, suntanning on the beach, face down. I pull a gun and shoot them. That's not murder? That's involuntary because I only meant to use the hollow point round to maim, not kill?


    What the fuck?

    By my limited understanding of the law as it applies to this, you're grossly misinterpreting the use of "involuntary" in this context. Obviously his actual act was physically "voluntary." But that's not what is meant.

    Basically, the prosecutor failed to prove that he intended to pull the gun instead of the Taser, at which point all that was proven was criminal negligence and not an intent to kill.

    The point is that had he actually pulled the Taser, the chance that his action would have killed the suspect was remote. The prosecutor also didn't prove (I don't believe he even tried to) that the use of the Taser was in and of itself a felony, so no "felony murder" charge was available. All the prosecutor was able to prove was that this cop was criminally negligent, and that negligence resulted in the death of another person.

    Hence, "involuntary" manslaughter.

    The fact that a jury was willing to convict a cop of being criminally negligent in the use of force at all is what is (sadly) impressive here.

    Spoiler:
  • KalTorakKalTorak Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Hachface wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Hachface wrote: »
    Thanatos wrote: »
    Can anyone give me a good reason why we shouldn't take tazers away from law enforcement officers?
    What if we totally replace guns with tasers?
    I would be fine with that.

    They'd still use their tasers way more frequently than they would have used their gun.

    Fuck tasers. They make cops lazy, and lazy cops killers, apparently.

    Guy is struggling too hard? Taser.
    Guy is running on the field at a ball game and you don't feel like running today? Taser.
    Guy you pulled over gives you lip and you have indigestion? Taser.

    Why should you subdue people physically when you have a gadget that incapacitates them and they probably won't die, right?

  • FeralFeral Who needs a medical license when you've got style? Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Here. Found some info from the last thread.
    Feral wrote:
    I dunno if anybody has linked it yet, but here's the standard BART police taser.

    http://www.taser.com/products/law/Pages/TASERX26.aspx

    26000_a.jpg

    And here's an owner's manual for his firearm (PDF link): http://pdf.textfiles.com/manuals/FIREARMS/sig_p220to245.pdf

    No external safety.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch, man" fallacy.
  • FeralFeral Who needs a medical license when you've got style? Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Actually, the above PDF link is for the standard-issue BART cop sidearm. I don't know for sure if that's the one the guy was carrying.
    Feral wrote:
    Also, as we previously discussed in the thread, the standard-issue BART police taser has a thumbswitch safety while the standard-issue BART police firearm does not. Why didn't he notice that the safety wasn't there if he thought it was a taser?

    Both of those fuck-ups are explainable, but most likely explanations make the guy look a little bit worse.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch, man" fallacy.
  • OptimusZedOptimusZed Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Tasers should be required to be kept in a holster on a different side of the body in a completely different area. Gun on hip, taser in shoulder or something.

    If you go for your left hip thinking it's your right armpit and wind up shooting a guy, that's on you.

    We're reading Rifts. You should too. You know you want to. On Hiatus!

    Any gamers in the Danville, PA area? PM me if you're interested in some tabletop gaming.
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    When he accidentally causes the death of someone, as happened here. Execution implies intent. He was struggling with someone he was arresting and he pulled the wrong weapon. It's still not murder. If he'd stood the guy against the wall, pulled his gun and put one between the guys eye's, yes, that would be murder.

    How does a 2 year veteran cop accidentally pull a gun instead of a taser? Is it that hard to tell the difference, especially when you have the time to make sure? We're talking about the difference between killing somebody and incapacitating him. The guy was subdued by multiple officers.

    Reasonable. Doubt.
    And everyone fucking knows that sometimes people die after being tasered

    What percentage of Taser usages result in the death of the subject?

    It's relevant, because whether a reasonable person would consider the death of the subject at all likely would probably come into play in determining whether the firing of the Taser constitutes intent to kill.

    The answer, of course, is "a retardedly small percentage" and "it's not at all likely."

    Spoiler:
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