Monday, July 16, 2012

The horrific cost of that "tactical advantage"

Details from this incident are still a bit sketchy but it appears that the Lake County, Florida cops who were chasing a murder suspect Sunday morning somehow came to the conclusion that since the suspect's bicycle was seen inside an apartment complex that out of all the units the person must be in the apartment of one Andrew Scott, an innocent pizza delivery driver.

According to the article the cops were massed and skulking around Scott's apartment around 1:30 a.m.  Scott, apparently awakened by the commotion and concerned for his safety, opened his front door with a handgun in his hand.  Officers immediately gunned Scott down despite his not pointing the gun at them, not looking anything at all like the man the cops were chasing and, most importantly, police during the entire episode never bothering to identify themselves as law enforcement:

"Officers had not announced who they were because they did not want the man they thought was inside, Jonathan Brown, to escape.

Sheriff's spokesman Lt. John Herrell said their silence was 'tactically advantageous'."

Having a badge does not confer on "authorities" a license to gun down an innocent person simply because it's "tactically advantageous" for the officers to not announce their presence or identify their target before filling it full of holes because they "think" something to be the case.  When ordinary citizens do that it's labeled homicide and prosecuted.  This should be treated no differently.

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