T Nation

8th Grader Shot in School by Police


#1

http://news.yahoo.com/texas-police-kill-8th-grader-carrying-pellet-gun-003818851.html

First off, why is a 15 year-old still in middle school?

Anyways, based on the story given and the picture of the kid's "weapon", I definitely would not have thought twice about putting a few rounds into the little shit. First priority is protecting life and safety of the public and other responding officers.

From the article:

"Why was so much excess force used on a minor?" he asked. "Three shots. Why not one that would bring him down?"
His wife, who demanded that the officers be punished, added: "What happened was an injustice."

Who agrees with the parents? How many of you, when faced with a weapon pointed directly at you, would only shoot one shot to preserve the lives of everyone in a crowded school?

It states, two officers fired three rounds at the kid. I for one think that the proper amount of force was used. I was trained, as a minimum, to fire in controlled pairs (two shots at all times) for most situations. That being said, the answer to their question is, the amount of force was used on the minor because the minor pointed an extremely real looking weapon at the police officers. End of story.

Opinions?


#2

Three shots from two people in what they honestly believed was a life or death situation is hardly excessive, I think it speaks well to their training that it was only three shots and the shots did exactly what they were intended to do.

It's a tragedy in every sense and for everyone involved but a 15 year old is old enough to understand what he was doing and what the potential consequences of his actions could be.


#3

My condolences to the family for being so unlucky to have such a dumb ass kid. On the other hand, shame on them for raising such an airhead. He consumed scarce resources that could have been used by productive citizens not so freaking stupid. The world is a better place with him gone.


#4

Was this kid suicidal? Also, fifteen years old but still in grade eight? Did this kid have any mental impairments that could explain his lack of response to the police telling him to lower the gun? - - not to say that justifies him getting into a gun-fight with the cops in the first place. It doesn't, I just find it strange that someone with the mindset to do this would go unnoticed unless any strange behaviour could be chalked up to a cognitive disability.

3 shots sounds excessive, but I wasn't there so I can't judge them on that. They couldn't have known it was just a pellet gun, so their hands were pretty much tied on this one from what this article tells me.


#5

To be honest, I forgot to mention I am sad his parents lost their child, but this really couldnt have gone down any differently, IMO.

TigerTime: I haven't read anything about this kid having any mental disabilities.


#6

Sad story. My question, six shots fired but the kid was hit "at least twice". Where are the other bullets?


#7

I do not think 3.shots is excessive. I remember when a cop gave a talk about self-defense said that if we shoot someone in our housex empty the gun on them. A dead intruder is much less dangerous than a wounded one-during the event and afterwards.


#8

The article says 8th grade. My daughter is 14 and in 8th grade and has not been held back.


#9

I'm guessing they meant there was a total of 3 shots fired by the officers. Meaning one officer probably shot once and the other shot twice. At least, that's what I'm gathering from it.

My guess is, your daughter started 8th grade as a 13 year old and had a birthday during this school year. I was assuming this kid was 2 years older than the average 8th grader who is probably 13 right now. Just making an assumption but my guess is this kid was held back at least once, but that is really an unimportant part of the story.


#10

I've been taught, for the most part, to fire in twos. Controlled pairs to center mass and then usually another round (or two) to the hip(s) or head as a means of stopping an individual from continuing the action which led me to shoot in the first place. So, with that said, I honestly think the minimum amount of force was used to a T.

I think for the average citizen, that is good advice. If you decided to fire your weapon, you need to ensure you and your family are safe. I understand not every state is as WONDERFUL as Texas with their homeowner's rights to self defense/defense of property, but this is what I've told my mom and any significant other. Let God sort out the prick who broke in. He shouldn't have been there in the first place.


#11

The loss of life of a 15 year old is tragic. However, he brought the result upon himself. It has been over 10 years since the Columbine incident. Since then, there have been far too many active shooters at schools for police to take a "soft" approach towards anyone with a gun in a school. Even the most obtuse person knows that there is going to be a massive, armed response to even the THREAT of an active shooter in a school full of kids.

For the record, the vast majority of active shooter training that takes place these days teaches that officers should continue to fire until the threat goes down. It doesn't matter how many rounds that takes. We work off of two assumptions when dealing with active shooters: 1. They are motivated to continue until they are physically incapable of doing so. 2. They are likely to be prepared to fend off police, which could possibly include body armor. Therefore, you shoot until the shooter goes down and stays down.

I am not surprised by the parents' response. No parent wants to lose their child. I wouldn't want to lose mine either. But, at the age of 15, he knew what he was doing. Bad decision on his part. I would be more interested to know what precipitated his actions, but we may never know that. Realistically though, those officers are in the clear. The mother will never agree, but I think the vast majority of society would.


#12

Very sad story. I feel for the family. I despise the police but I'm going to stand by the fucking cops on this.


#13

I teach in Damn Yankeeland and I use the homeowner's rights as an example of how Texas is different as well as the thoughts about private property. When I first mention it they laugh, then I say I am serious, then they look a bit scared of me. Sets a good tone for the semester, laughter and fear.


#14

"Interim Police Chief Orlando Rodriguez said the teen was pointing the weapon at officers and "had plenty of opportunities to lower the gun and listen to the officers' orders, and he didn't want to.""

The parents don't seem to realize this but handguns are not toys. They are a tool invented for the sole purpose of making it as easy as possible to end a human life, and that is exactly what the officers used them for, not just trying to wound him or hurt him.


#15

This makes me sad. Not all us cops are skeezy scum bags. PROMISE! :slight_smile:


#16

Real technically, you shoot to neutralize the threat, not to kill or wound.


#17

HAHA!! People freak out when they get into my truck and see my weapons. I carry a Taurus Judge Public Defender on my person/holstered under the steering column and a modified Remington 870 in my vehicle incase of emergencies. When I get my new AR, I think I may rig up something to make it easily accessible in my back seat. Not sure yet.


#18

For all of you who keep worrying about him being 15, it all depends on when your birthday falls. I was born in January, so I was 15 before I finished 8th grade and my son was born in late November, so even though he was always the youngest in his class in nursery school, he had to wait an extra year to go into pre-K because he was born after September. About half the kids in his class are even older than he is because they were born in October and early November.

As far as the kid's parent's concerns, I think they are operating purely out of emotion and not common sense. If someone is pointing a gun at a police officer and TWO only fire 3 shots, they were more than restrained. This kid had students and staff terrified and the police had to diffuse the situation as quickly and as safely as possible.


#19

I don't understand why you wouldn't drop a 'fake' gun when told to - by the police nonetheless.

That's just stupid.


#20

I feel the need to correct you here. You stated you teach in Damn Yankeeland. That is an improper use of a derivative of Damn Yankee, because, by definition, a Damn Yankee is a northerner who travels to Dixie and doesn't leave. Therefore, you teach in Yankeeland. It is you who would be a Damn Rebel, only up north in Yankeeland, we don't use such names, presumably because we won the war.

Btw, not everyone in the north is a flaming liberal.

DB