Originally posted by bigfatfurrytexan
My brother in law is a VA security. He is a federal officer, and on his little tiny 2 road campus he drives a police interceptor version sedan to
enforce the security of his campus. He is a federal employee paid by the VA.
From what I understand, in this story, it is not federal officers. It is security guards from a third party.
I was referring to armed security and not commissioned law enforcement. There are states who have laws that allow security to lawfully detain and or
take enforcement action. I pointed this out simply to highlight that a blanket viewpoint of security not being able to take any actions is not
Originally posted by bigfatfurrytexan
Let me ask you, however....would you have opened fire on this kid given the details of the story as we know them? Do you believe shooting at him
while he fled is appropriate, in your training?
I am going to provide 2 answers -
1st - Based solely on the info contained in the OP article, the officer was justified in discharging his weapon at the vehicle. The driver of the
vehicle fled from them once already, and during their second attempt to make contact the person showed absolutely no regard for the security officers
life when he backed up and hit one. At that moment, he demonstrated a disregard for life, and the vehicle went from being a vehicle to that of a
deadly weapon weighing 2,000 pounds.
In this example a person cannot view the incidents as separate - It must be viewed as one complete incident, from the person being observed by
security, to security attempting to make lawful contact, to the person fleeing from security, to the person coming back to the parking lot, to
security trying to make a second attempt to make contact, to the person jumping in his car knowing full well security was wanting him to stop, to him
ignoring security and trying to back his car up, to him striking one of the officers with his vehicle, to the driver failing to stop after hitting the
officer, to attempting to flee the scene.
I am not a fan of second guessing the actions of an officer when I was not present to experience eveything as they did.
Its one thing to read the article, from point A to point Z. Its something else entirely when you are the one present and you dont get the luxury of
being able to read the events prior to them occurring.
Answer 2 - What would I ahve done if I were present. Its hard to say however, if I or a fellow officer gets hit by a vehicle, and that vehicle fails
to stop knowing full well they hit the officer, I would take the action as a deadly force encounter and would have responded accordingly, which is to
say I would have shot at the vehicle as well.
While the driver of the vehicle was 15, we didnt know that until after the incident during the follow up investigation. Age plays no factor in this
type of encounter. A 15 year old is just as deadly as a 95 year old when behind the wheel of a car and intentionally striking a person and trying to
flee the scene.
To clarify something - The US Supreme Court ruled in Tennessee vs. Garner that deadly force cannot be used against a fleeing felon. The exception
they allowed is when a person commits an action that not only places the officer's in fear of their lives (deadly force encounter) but the actions of
the person demonstrate a complete disregard for the public as a whole. In those instaces, an officer can shoot a person who is fleeing if they can
articulate the person is an imminent threat to public safety.
In this case, by his actions, the driver of the car met that criteria.
I cannot stress enough that 20/20 hindsight cannot be used to second guess actions. The standard is what did the officer perceive the moment deadly
force was used. The info we have from the article was not available to the officers.
If you wish me to be more exact let me know. I hate being dragged into some of these discussions as people like to attack me forexplaining the law
and refusing to condemn an action that was lawful and justified.
edit on 9-2-2013 by Xcathdra because: (no reason given)