Monday, May 13, 2024

Mr. Fortson and Mr. Rosario - Another wave of improper use of force?

 It is nothing new.  Policemen responding to a call for assistance.  We can imagine the adrenaline and apprehension they must feel as they approach a situation they have been sent to respond to.  The unknown awaits them.  The common thread they all have is they are armed to respond with deadly force to the situation.  That is there personal tool for saving their own lives.

But in two recent situations either lack of training, or unsubstantiated fear resulted in the police murder of a victim who need not have died.  An airman in Florida, Roger Fortson.  Shot to death as he stood in his apartment, one arm toward a sheriff at his door, and one arm with a gun pointed toward the floor.  The result 5 to 6 gunshots by the officer which resulted in Mr. Fortson later dieing of the wounds caused by the gunfire.

Nineteen year old Mr. Rosario in Queens, New York having a mental issue crisis.  Responding policeman attempt to tase him, but a situation when Mr. Rosario got a hold of a pair of scissors and approached the officers, resulted in Mr. Rosario being shot and killed by one of the policeman who had responded to the scene.

These events are nothing new.  Nor is the refusal to conduct a nation wide review of police training.  The refusal to stress de escalation continues.  The refusal to implement nation wide use of force policies continues.

Now the thought is building on how competent are the police to respond to a situation and a call for help?  If you do so, are the odds greater that the request will lead to the death of someone, possibly even yourself?  The competence of each officer to use a weapon only when necessary needs to be asked before they start their tour of duty.  Which officers are liable to shoot to kill first rather than deescalate.  This is a conversation every city with a police force should be having with local police, state police and sherriff departments.

Is it coming to the point where we have to defend ourselves against the police??

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