I must have missed this on the news, probably burried underneath all the shock that some MPs are paying back their ill-gotten gains.
Police shot & killed a man in Durham yesterday. Keith Richards, a 47-year-old father of two was shooting a crossbow from his house at random targets. Armed police arrived. A neighbour is reported to have said, “They warned him plenty of times. They kept telling him to put the weapon down and come out.”
It’s not entirely clear what happened but at some stage an officer opened fire & killed Richards. Henry Porter, of the Guardian knows though, at least he talsk as if he knows all the circumstances since he posted on his blog “Should the police ever shoot to kill?”
He then talks about several cases where people have been shot by the police for the simple act of threatening or trying to kill people with a deadly weapon.
Methinks Mr Porter has been spending too much time watching Hollywood movies. His recommended course of action when someone is about to try & kill someone else, is to shoot them in the shoulder, thus disarming them with the resulting happy conclusion that neither offender or potential target dies. He completely misses the point that by the time an officer takes the decision to pull the trigger it has reached the point where he believes that himself or another person is in imminent threat of being killed. The officer’s only task then is to remove that threat.
I’m not sure how much skill Mr Porter has with a firearm, I don’t have much experienceĂ‚Â myself although I have shot a variety of police issue weapons both in the UK & Europe in the non-threatening situation of a target range. The biggest & therefore easiest target is the body mass. You might have one shot. Is he really suggesting that the best tactic for everyone is taking the chance of being able to shoot someone in the arm? You need to make sure the target has no chance whatsoever of harming someone else. You shoot to stop, simple as. The facts that the body mass contains most of the vital organs is both a risk & a blessing.
I can just see it. Police shoot someone in the shoulder who is just about to kill someone, he still manages to fire his gun after being winged. Who’s gonna get the blame then? It sure as hell won’t be Henry Porter.
Perhaps we should just make all people who get drunk & decide the shoot at random people, stop, sit down in the middle of the road & wait until we can get a team of snipers on the case.
All police shootings should be like this.