Cops : what do we pay them for?

We keep hearing about people being shot by police.  Usually we hear about these shootings because the person shot was black, and the immediate response by the civil rights people and press is that he was shot because he was black.  This does  happen.

Yes, there are “some” cops who will shoot just because the suspect is black.  He might feel threatened by the person’s skin color, as he expects blacks to be violent felons.  He might not have been well trained, with little continuing training, in the first place.

Some Law Enforcement departments have rather intensive training, continuous, on the “use of force policy”.  Sometimes they use projected images of confrontations where the person being tested shoots at a projection screen.  Some use a version of paintball bullets that allows them to use their service weapon.  There are many different ways and you can find some of them displayed on youtube.  The nearest I have seen of this is that, when we were doing Security Police Qualification Course (SPQC) you would run in place for 30 or 40 seconds, or until you were breathing heavily.  This was an attempt to simulate the effect of an adrenaline rush in the blood.  The heavy breathing would play hell with your aim, as you tried to control your breathes in order to steady your arms..

The average Law Enforcement officer will, statistically, never fire his weapon off the firing range but, others might never know when it is going to be required.  It could happen on-duty, or off-duty as some departments view cops as always cops and so are required to carry a weapon at all times.

Years ago, there was a book called “Deadly Routine” which explained that sometime the officer’s duties, such as traffic stops, get to be so routine that they get careless and might not see the signs of danger until it is too late.

When an officer pulls over a vehicle, even for just speeding, he does not know if that person will just accept the ticket, argue over the ticket, or be a felon who pulls a weapon.  NO CALL is SAFE, and each situation may bring danger.  Arresting a husband, in a domestic fight, could result in the officer being attacked by the victim.  Cops chasing down a hit and run driver, who happened to be black, have been attacked by people who just saw what they assumed was the officers as attacking a man, for no reason they saw, for simply being black..

We could not pay them enough to do all the jobs we expect of them.  In addition to enforcing the law, knowing which laws would apply, being considerate of our constitutional rights, dealing with homeless people, people with mental problems, people with physical limitations, such as being deaf, or even people who do not speak English, and we expect them to do this in an environment where someone will decide that the officer did something wrong.

Take this situation:  a man is seen crawling into the window of a house, and reported by neighbors as a possible burglar.  Police arrive and enter the house, where they find a black male who refuses to identify himself and loudly accused them of racial profiling,so they arrest him for “disorderly conduct”. He turned out to be a Harvard Professor.  President Obama even got into the act by, while admitting that he did not know the particular facts, accusing the Police Sargent of “racial profiling” and “acting stupidly”.  Thus proving himself guilty of the very things he had accused the white Sargent of…

Mistakes happen and we expect the officer to know when to pursue a course of action and when to back off, all the while knowing that any mistake he makes is bound to be interpreted as “abuse of authority”.


That Joe Guy.

They Walk among us..

nfrom Chris Murphy 01634 686 515nA church pastor has been savaged after launching a bitter attack on the gay community in Orlando hours after the Pulse club horror.nHe took to his pulpit to spit hate, saying: "Hey, are you sad that 50 paedophiles were killed today? No ... I think that's great. I think that helps society.  I think Orlando, Florida's a little safer tonight."nAs if that wasn't enough, in front of his believers, he later added: "It is unnatural for a man to be attracted to another man.n"The tragedy is that more of them didn't die."nIt happened in Sacramento, California, and it didn't take long for others to launch their own attacks on Pastor Roger Jimenez sermon of spite.nA link on his church's Facebook page, Verity Baptist Church,  directs viewers to the hour long sermon on YouTube.nFor members of Sacramento's LGBTQ community, religious freedom is sacred, but leaders feel a vile line has been crossed.n"We as the gay community support you should be able to worship as you see fit, but it's when you use the pulpit to incite violence or demean or discredit another class of people, just utter disgust," Donald Bentz, executive director of Sacramento's LGBTQ Community Center told local news station FOX40.nJimenez was contacted at his church, on the phone and at his home Monday but has not yet made a comment.nPastor Jimenez used passages in the Bible from Judges 19:22, Genesis 4:1 and Romans 1:27 to back up his points.nBut Mr Bentz countered that saying: "Most of those texts were originally written into Hebrew, translated into Greek, translated into Latin, translated into old English, new English and then back to English and every author that did the translations subjected them to the social mores of their time."nPastor Jimenez called the victims "predators".n"To know that this man's church is within driving distance of my home and where I work and where I'm walking at night, and his congregation members are out on the street, it's very scary," Mr Bentz told Fox40.nEven Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson took to Twitter to express his feelings, saying: "The hateful comments made by a preacher in Sacramento do not reflect Christian values and have no place in our society."nTo see the key points of the sermon go here and watch the Fox40 videon

I am starting this entry on Tuesday the 14th of June.

As you will know by now, over 50 people where killed Sunday morning at the Pulse night club in Orlando Fla.  The nightclub in question is a hangout for the LGBT set.

I am not going into the legitimacy of the gay community, I don’t think they are normal, or bad, they just are.

Here is an interesting Link to an L.A.Times article

We know about the idea of Radical Islam, though President Obama seems to have a hard time with the concept.. but, so we ever consider the other side of that coin?  Radical Christians?  Not really..

According to the  Washington Post: Pastor Roger Jimenez from Verity Baptist Church in Sacramento told his congregation that Christians “shouldn’t be mourning the death of 50 sodomites.”

Add to that the Westberro Baptist Church saying, after the Boston Marathon bombing, “Thank God for Bombers”, and you might wonder if the description “radical Baptist” might be in order..

I want to say again, I do not think homosexuality is normal, or any combination of it, but that, is my personal opinion and I would not inflict it on anyone..

Hate speech is just that “Hate Speech” and just because they have to title Iman or Reverend on their name does not make it any less so..

That is one thing that President Obama should be able to understand after having listened to the Reverend Wright for 20 years..

For centuries society had defined marriage as between a man and woman, then the MIBs, Men in Bathrobes, decided that a marriage ban violated their rights to something, and declared marriage open to all.

I might not agree with homosexuality but that is their bussiness, not mine, and to say “kill the sodomites” is hate speech of the type that should be condemmed as we comdem those who say “kill the infidels”.


That Joe Guy.

I am sorry Baltimore..

but it seems you have more problems than just racism.

In the Baltimore death of Freddie Gray it would appear that the operative words are “race to judgment”.

As of today there are a number of question that need to be answered..  Freddie Gray was arrested on Apr. 12 by three bike patrol officers, in the Gilmore Housing area, after he “locked eyes with them” and turned around to get away..  They chased him down, searched him, and then arrested him for “suspicion of carrying a switch blade”.  The knife has since been identified as a plain folding knife of the type that is legal to carry,  according to Marilyn Mosby,  which made it an illegal arrest.  My understanding of things is that Mosby works for the state of Maryland, and is talking about state law.  A task force of City Officers said the knife was illegal under city ordinances.  So there might be a question there.

Legally Law Enforcement officers are assumed, unless proven otherwise, to act according to the law.  This gives them a certain protection as not every arrest is either prosecuted, or convicted, and there are times when charges just can not be proven, either because the evidence is not there, or the officers made mistakes.

So the question here might be why did three officers arrest him for carrying what might be a legal knife?  Did they not know the difference between a switch blade and a folding knife?  Not likely.  So why would they arrest him for it if they knew the charges would be dismissed, or was it just a result of some kind of misunderstanding?  One explanation might have to do with the fact that when Freddie Gray saw that the officers had seen him he turned to leave the area..  Many officers will take that for a suspicious act and want to investigate.  At least to the point of getting an ID.  In this case the knife appears to be a reason to hold him, for long enough to find out if he is wanted in another jurisdiction, or in case a crime has been committed, though not as yet reported, and he might be the perp.

The injury is my next question..  There are a number of, to me, puzzling aspects to his injury..  A number of people have pointed to the video of Mr. Gray getting carried to the police wagon..  They site this as evidence that he was unable to use his legs to walk.  I have looked at the video and to me it looks like rather than being straight and dragging his legs look bent as if he has pulled them up so as to force the officers to carry him.  This is a tactic that is often used by protesters when they are arrested by police.  This might also explain his cries of pain.  Just think about what his shoulder would feel like if, when he lifted his legs into the air, the officers carried him by his cuffed arms, thus putting additional pressure on his shoulder joints.

While NBC News quotes Deputy Police Commissioner Keven Davis as having  said when police arrested Gray on Presbury Street, “quite frankly that’s exactly where Freddie Gray should have received medical attention, and he did not.”   The coroners office was supposed to have said that the injury happened after Mr. Gray had been in the van.  So, is Commissioner Davis saying that all arrested persons should receive medical care after an arrest?  Does he know something we don’t, or is it possible that the injury happened during the arrest, when officers were said to have held his head down with their feet, and the injury was aggravated by the ride in the wagon.

I would like to know more about that ride in the wagon.  He was placed, handcuffed, into the back of the van.  It looks like the placed him on the floor of the van rather than on an interior bench.  Later the van is supposed to have stopped so they could put leg irons on him..  I worked at the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office, in the jail, for several months before they decided that I did not have the temperament to work with prisoners, but in the 4 months that I was there I saw a number of times when, either City or County, would bring unruly prisoners into the jail using what is sometimes referred to a hogtie.  If this were the case with Mr. Gray it would indeed be hard to belt him onto a bench.  So maybe this is what happened..  He might have been laying on the floor of the van with his ankles cuffed to his wrist, or maybe not.

There were reports that the coroners office stated that he had a head injury that matched a bolt in the back of the van but I do not remember seeing anything about where this bolt was located.  Would it be in a place where he could only come into contact with it if he was on the floor, or was it some place where he might have hit it while on the bench?

One medical source was reported to have said that Freddie Gray injuries were consistent with those found in a car crash…

Did an officer’s knee against his neck, a move done to hold a struggling prisoner still, have enough force to do this, or was that he suffered an injury that was not serious by itself but was further damaged by the ride.

That gets us to the ride in the van..  and there does seem to be a history of people injured in the back of these vans:

(This part taken from

Relatives of Dondi Johnson Sr., who was left a paraplegic after a 2005 police van ride, won a $7.4 million verdict against police officers. A year earlier, Jeffrey Alston was awarded $39 million by a jury after he became paralyzed from the neck down as the result of a van ride. Others have also received payouts after filing lawsuits. […]

Christine Abbott, a 27-year-old assistant librarian at the Johns Hopkins University, is suing city officers in federal court, alleging that she got such a ride in 2012. According to the suit, officers cuffed Abbott’s hands behind her back, threw her into a police van, left her unbuckled and “maniacally drove” her to the Northern District police station, “tossing [her] around the interior of the police van.” […]

The most sensational case in Baltimore involved Johnson, a 43-year-old plumber who was arrested for public urination. He was handcuffed and placed in a transport van in good health. He emerged a quadriplegic.

In 1997, Alston became paralyzed from the neck down in a van after being arrested. Alston said he told the officers he couldn’t breathe, but they refused to give him an inhaler for asthma.

Officers said the 32-year-old repeatedly rammed his head into the side of the van, freed himself from a seat belt and thrashed some more.

Alston sued, and at the trial, Dr. Adrian Barbul, a Sinai Hospital trauma surgeon, testified that Alston had no external head injuries when he was taken to the emergency room.

(last of the above)

Maybe the Maryland State Attorney Marilyn Mosby knows something we can’t see, maybe she is just going for a prosecution to let the courts decide what happened, or maybe she is just another activist who wants to show that she can be tough on cops, even though she is from a police family.

I don’t have enough information to decide, though it does not really look good for the Baltimore City Police Department.

Trivia fact alert : Baltimore has a Baltimore City Police Department, a Baltimore County Police Department, and a Baltimore County Sheriff’s Office..  Supposedly the BCSO only works through the courts.

It would be nice to know, though not really important here in Florida, if this problem is an indication of systemic failure in the BPD, or a freak occurrence.


Thank you,

That Joe Guy.


Protecting Our Children…

Not long after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings some

Embed from Getty Images

people started saying we needed to place armed security officers at our schools..

That is a good question..  Should we spend the money to place officers on patrol in a school on the chance they might be in the right place to intervene when shooting starts?  Not long after the Columbine shooting there was at least one report that the school resource officer assigned to the school was ordered, by school officials, to stay out of the building.  This instruction was probably due to the policy, common at the time, to first secure the scene, of any possible hostage situation, and then decide if armed entry was required..  The result, in that case, was that law enforcement did not get into the building for some period of time, like up to 1 1/2  – 2 hours later, by which time the shooting had stopped, and the killing was done.  This included the two shooters who killed THEMSELVES..  So, an armed guard at a school is useless if he can not be at the place where he is needed.

On his TV show Piers Morgan, arguing with a young lady about armed guards placed in a school, this was just after the Sandy Hook shooting, he argued that it would ensure a “firefight” that would further endanger the students.   As if he preferred the shooter be the only one armed..   He refused to admit the possibility that being shot at might force the shooter to either retreat, get to cover, surrender, or just die..   Any of these situations would allow school personnel to get the students out of danger…

If you don’t agree that armed officers, or even private guards, should be at our schools keep this in mind..  On a timeline, published by CNN, it was reported that was a period of 20 minutes between the first phone call to 911 and the arrival, in force, of law enforcement.  In that time the shooter had free rein to shoot his fill of children, and then kill himself.  To be fair we might consider that the delay could have been caused by dispatchers thinking the first 911 call was a prank..  and maybe they did not want to dispatch a horde of law enforcement people to the school, and cause all sorts of confusion, if it was indeed a false alarm, or maybe they had to find the school on a map..  I don’t know.

In Manatee County Fl. there was the question of whether the school board could use Private Security for the schools, or if they had to use Sheriff’s Deputies…  The school board, in the person of the Superintendent,  stated they could get guards at 31, or 32, of the 33 schools, while with the Sheriff’s Department they would get 5 Resource officers to cover then same number of locations..  or 5 Deputies for 32 schools..

The Sheriff’s office countered that state law said that school resource officers must be “state certified” law enforcement officers, which would generally mean that they had to be employed by a law enforcement department, rather than a Private company.

Some will point to Florida, with the “Stand Your Ground” law and say we a trying to bring back the wild west but we don’t have nearly as many different Policing agencies as say New York City..  They have, at least, the NYPD, the Transit Authority, the Housing Authority, the Sanitation Police and until recently the ASPCA had armed Officers.

Should the School Boards have the authority to have it’s own policing agency?  If we leave the security of the schools in the hands of, say the local Sheriff’s office, how often during a given day would they be called away in support of the road deputies.

The University of South Florida has a Police Department, so why not the Sarasota, or Manatee, County School District?

Defenseless is not the same as protected.



That Joe Guy.


Warning Shots? Ha..

A while back I saw an article, I did not have a chance then to look more closely at it,

English: no original description
English: no original description (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

about how the Florida Legislature was sending a bill to Governor Scott that would authorize the use of “Warning Shot” in the state code dealing with use of force.

My first thought was “what are they, stupid?” There are a number of reason why “warning shots” are a bad idea..  Lets just look at one possibility.  Lets say you had a permit for a concealed carry and happen on a situation where a group of people are beating up another person..  You think “I will fire a warning shot to scare them off”.  If you fire it into the air, like they used to do in the old cop shows, it is going to come down somewhere and might hurt, or kill, someone not even involved.  If you fire it into the ground it is just as possible that it might follow a hard surface, such as a sidewalk, or even ricochet off the ground and hit someone..  Let us say that the person you are confronting is also armed.  You let them know you are armed, and fire your “warning shot” to let them know you are serious.  Maybe you don’t really intend to fire the “hit shot”, you just want to scare him, he would know that you will be firing that first shot away from him, and he will have the time it takes you to realign your aim to sight in on you and pull his trigger.  It all sounds nice but you have given away your advantage.

There are all kinds of scenarios that could apply here but, most of them are not favorable to waning shots.

I looked up a couple of articles on the new Florida bill having to do with these “Warning Shots” and some people even thought the bill would make “warning shot” mandatory.  At least one of the articles, from a newspaper, pointed out that the bill said that these “warning shots” would be legal where they could be done SAFELY which would rule it out in most cases…

The law does not “mandate” warning shots..  If that were true the state would be opening itself to all kinds of legal problems…   Just think for a moment that the state of Florida were stupid enough to mandate “warning shots”..  I see bad guys mugging and old lady..  I charge up..  brandishing my weapon, I want him to know I have one, he ignores me..  I tell him I am armed and will shoot, and then, when he continues to ignore me, I fire a “warning shot”.  I comes down about half a block away and gets some woman, innocently weeding in her yard, in the head..

Her layers are going to want to make some money, so the convince her family to sue…  Who do they sue?  You, the one to fire the shot, the mugger, who was the cause of the warning shot, or the state which made it mandatory?

No..  making it mandatory would be even too stupid for the Obama administration..

From what I can tell they just made it easier to defend yourself with out having to shoot, and do it so that you won’t get into trouble..

So lets not get carried away with the foul thoughts of Citizens being able to defend themselves..  just be cause it says we can in the constitution..

I know the Democrats seem to want to cater to the criminals..  That is understandable as they pander to the people who’s votes they want…


That Joe Guy

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