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Thread: Seattle-PI Article- guy who shot at police

  1. #1
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    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/soundo...ticleID=321435 (the article link is at the top of this link--this link goes directly to the comments)

    Make sure to read the comments below the article-- interesting perspectives and different takes on the situation.

    Depending on the situation, he may be guilty of unlawful display of a firearm (was he scared for his life??)

    but overall, who's the blameworthy party, the guy or the undercover officers? I'm intersted in hearing the take on it from everyone here.

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    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    For those of us that don't like (or cannot) following links:

    New details emerge in case of driver who outshot police
    By LEVI PULKKINEN
    P-I REPORTER

    Emerging details in an exchange of gunfire involving three undercover Seattle police officers contradict initial statements from the department that the driver who led police on a late-night chase was still at large.

    The driver, a 28-year-old Seattle man, actually turned himself in to authorities -- hours before police public information officers erroneously said he was still on the loose.

    Police on Tuesday acknowledged that the driver -- who shot up the officers' unmarked car Thursday night after leading them on a chase through Seattle streets -- likely didn't know who was pursuing him.

    The incident began just before midnight on Denny Way when three undercover detectives riding in a Ford Edge were cut off by a white Cadillac, according to police statements. The Cadillac's driver then braked to pull alongside the undercover police near the intersection of Denny Way and Terry Avenue, according to investigators' statements.

    "He started yelling and swearing at the officers," a Seattle police investigator wrote in a report. "(Of course, he did not know they were police officers.)"

    Police said the man then drew an automatic pistol, cocked it and pointed it at the officers. In response, the officer driving the unmarked car fired one shot at the Cadillac, missing both the car and the driver.

    Calls made Tuesday night to the alleged driver of the Cadillac and his attorney were not returned.

    Police spokeswoman Renee Witt on Tuesday said it's likely the detectives -- two officers and a sergeant -- never identified themselves as police. "I don't know if there was even an opportunity to do so," she said.

    The Cadillac sped away after the officer fired, and the officers pursued, according to the report. While the Edge was not equipped with emergency lights or a siren -- and lacked the horsepower to keep up with the Cadillac -- the undercover officers chased the larger car north and called for backup.

    Witt defended the decision to continue the pursuit even though the officers' vehicle lacked lights and sirens.

    "They were able to do it in a safe manner," Witt said. "There's not much traffic at that time of night."

    The officers thought they'd lost the Cadillac as they approached the intersection of Green Lake Drive North and North 80th Street, according to court documents. But the Cadillac's driver had stopped his car and positioned himself to shoot from the driver's side window.

    According to police, the Cadillac's driver fired three shots at the Edge, disabling the vehicle with two flat tires without injuring the officers. The Cadillac then fled the scene.

    The man's last known address is blocks away from the site of the shooting, according to court documents. The P-I is not naming the man or the officers involved because no one has been charged with a crime.

    Contrary to earlier police statements, the Cadillac's driver surrendered to authorities Friday at an attorney's office in downtown Seattle, according to court documents. He declined to give a statement to the investigators examining the case.

    The man was jailed but released on his own recognizance after a bail hearing Saturday. King County Prosecutor's Office spokesman Dan Donohoe said prosecutors had asked that the man be held on $250,000 bail on suspicion of assault.

    "We felt he was a danger to the community," Donohoe said.

    Police investigators handed the case over to the prosecutor's office Tuesday. Donohoe said a charging decision will likely be made Wednesday.

    The police Firearms Review Board also will investigate to see whether officers adhered to department policy, Witt said.


  3. #3
    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    Well, if everything in that report is correct (the suspect pulling the gun first), then the officers were justified in firing (and should have hit something rather than perhaps hitting collateral damage, such as bystanders) and this guy is then guilty of Unlawful Display. It really all depends on what prompted the man to draw his gun. If he was just that angry, then he's guilty. If he saw one of the undercover officers reach for something in the vehicle, then he could be justfied in displaying the weapon to avert a potential altercation.

    The fact that he only shot the tires of the chasing vehicle speaks volumes about his mindset at the time. He wasn't trying to kill the officers, just to get away. If he can hit the tires accurately, he could have easily hit the officers in the vehicle.
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    VERY bad situation, for both parties. The best thing he could have done was turn himself in and explain the situation, before knowing they were cops, which he did, that might be the only thing which saves him.
    -Unrequited

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    I find it interesting that according to the PD report the Caddy BRAKED to pull along side the edge???? How does that work. If I stop first you pull up next to me not the other way around. the cops should have stayed behind him.

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    I notice a lack of mention of a 911 call by the cadillac driver. If he was so scared for his life to first display a firearm, then later use it, why no 911 call? In fact, why not several 911 calls?

    If he didn't have a cell phone, that could explain the first one or two calls, but then as soon as the driver returned home the first thing should have been to make that 911 call because he was just threatened and had to fire. Right?

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    Regular Member just_a_car's Avatar
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    gregma wrote:
    I notice a lack of mention of a 911 call by the cadillac driver. If he was so scared for his life to first display a firearm, then later use it, why no 911 call? In fact, why not several 911 calls?

    If he didn't have a cell phone, that could explain the first one or two calls, but then as soon as the driver returned home the first thing should have been to make that 911 call because he was just threatened and had to fire. Right?
    Doesn't sound to me like he went home... sounds like he ran from the "men who just shot at him" and did so for as far as he needed to set up to disable the vehicle safely. Note: "sounds like"; I don't know if that's actually the case.
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    just_a_car wrote:
    gregma wrote:
    I notice a lack of mention of a 911 call by the cadillac driver. If he was so scared for his life to first display a firearm, then later use it, why no 911 call? In fact, why not several 911 calls?

    If he didn't have a cell phone, that could explain the first one or two calls, but then as soon as the driver returned home the first thing should have been to make that 911 call because he was just threatened and had to fire. Right?
    Doesn't sound to me like he went home... sounds like he ran from the "men who just shot at him" and did so for as far as he needed to set up to disable the vehicle safely. Note: "sounds like"; I don't know if that's actually the case.
    The officers thought they'd lost the Cadillac as they approached the intersection of Green Lake Drive North and North 80th Street, according to court documents. But the Cadillac's driver had stopped his car and positioned himself to shoot from the driver's side window.



    Sounds to me like the threat hadended and he was waiting for them to catch up to him.



    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

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    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    I interpreted it differently. The cops were not in a police car, so he may well have thought it was a road rage incident. When he realized they were still behind him he decided to disable their car so they could not follow him home.



    Of course, we’ve only heard one side of that story, so any judgment would be foolish.

  10. #10
    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    Mainsail wrote:
    (from the article)
    "The police Firearms Review Board also will investigate to see whether officers adhered to department policy, Witt said."
    This should be interesting given the outcome of recent internal investigations by SPD. Wonder if the Chief will involve himself in this investigation too?
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

    "If you refuse to stand up for others now, who will stand up for you when your time comes?"

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