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Thread: Aurora Pays Settlement In Police Shooting of Criminal!?!?

  1. #1
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Aurora Pays Settlement In Police Shooting of Criminal!?!?

    Howdy Folks!
    Here is a story of Aurora paying $150K for shooting a criminal engaged in a criminal activity. (Say what?)

    Charges may be forthcoming against the cops!?!?! Are you kidding me?

    http://www.denverpost.com/commented/...rce=commented-

    My guess is that the criminals who got shot aren't from around these parts!

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin

  2. #2
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Howdy Folks!
    I do not normally reply to my own thread that I've just started, but this is heinous.

    For more on the story, click here:
    http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news...66/detail.html

    Why on earth did Aurora pay a settlement to the family of a criminal, driving in a stolen truck, who got shot while engaged in commission of another crime, and attempting to run down officers in that stolen truck? And the family had not filed suit against Aurora???

    This whole thing leaves me feeling like I must be sleepwalking, despite the fact I got up around 6:30 and already downed 3 cups of coffee. Has reality shifted off its axis?

    Now the officers might face charges against them for shooting a criminal who tried to mow them down with a truck? A stolen truck?

    Anybody interested in a demonstration in support of those cops?

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin
    Last edited by M-Taliesin; 07-07-2011 at 10:09 AM.

  3. #3
    Regular Member Lokster's Avatar
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    This is insanity. It sounds to me like a lot of what happened is still under investigation, but why would a settlement even be brought up, for what purpose and by whom?

    The tax payers in Aurora should be livid over this!

  4. #4
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lokster View Post
    This is insanity. It sounds to me like a lot of what happened is still under investigation, but why would a settlement even be brought up, for what purpose and by whom?

    The tax payers in Aurora should be livid over this!
    Howdy Pard!
    Yeah, while I can't speak for the rest of Aurora residents, my wife and I surely are!

    UPDATE: I called the City of Aurora to support the officers involved in this incident, to ask why a cash settlement was paid to the family of a man shot while in the commission of a crime, and why they were referred to the Arapahoe County DA for possible prosecution. My information was taken to be passed over to the chief of police, and I am expecting a call back from their office. I also left a voice message for Sgt. Cassidee asking for a return call asap, and hope to have additional facts shortly.

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin
    Last edited by M-Taliesin; 07-07-2011 at 11:21 AM.

  5. #5
    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    Cops don't have a license to gun anyone down. Unreasonable use of deadly force would seem to be the case here. There is not evidence that he tried to drive over the cops. He could have surrendered and been executed by them anyway. There is a lot more to this story, but the city wouldn't settle without wrongful death being in their minds. I wouldn't jump to support cops who are facing possible criminal charges too quickly. And I sure as hell wouldn't demonstrate 'either' way until more facts are out. All you have to do is look at the Denver Police Department to see Colorado isn't immune from rogue cops.

    This is from last MARCH! Anything new? Were the other two punks charged?
    Last edited by Gunslinger; 07-07-2011 at 12:17 PM.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

  6. #6
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunslinger View Post
    This is from last MARCH! Anything new? Were the other two punks charged?
    Howdy Gunslinger!
    First, I just want to note that Aurora cops are a better batch than you'd likely encounter in Denver. Aurora is also known to be very tolerant of open carry, and since I started OC'ing, I've yet to be approached by APD, even when officers have seen me carrying. Nothing said, no trouble, no hassle.

    That out of the way, the one news article said that the pickup truck driven by the crooks actually struck one of the officers who was subsequently taken to the hospital. Whether factual or not, I don't know for certain.

    I placed a call that was returned by Sgt. Cassidee Carlson who told me that every officer involved shooting is referred to the county D.A. for investigation. It is standard procedure following a shooting incident. The officers in this instance were cleared.

    My only remaining question, still to be answered, is why the city paid out a settlement. I have left a message for a callback from the City Manager, and hope to hear from them soon as to why this payout was made. Hopefully, I'll have an answer before close of business today.

    Meanwhile, the story (while it happened in March) was in the news today because of the settlement payment as reported by local media. At this time, I do not have any insight as to why such payout was made to the family of criminals who were involved in the commission of a crime when encountered by officers. I hope to have more on that shortly.

    As the officers were cleared by the D.A. in this instance, it would appear that officers performed within their authority, given that an officer was actually struck by the vehicle as the offenders attempted to escape the scene. So why the payout? That's the only issue I'd like to get answered at this point.

    Guess we don't need any sort of demonstration if the officers were cleared, but still might be nice to show our support for these officers.

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin
    Last edited by M-Taliesin; 07-07-2011 at 12:49 PM.

  7. #7
    Regular Member TheLittleMan's Avatar
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    Something's fishy

    It seems strange that the city would pay the family of a criminal that tried to run a cop over. There has to be more to the story that only the survivors and Cops know otherwise it would have just gone to the D.A. and the officers would have been cleared.

    It would certainly be nice to get the whole story on why the payout was made. Seems like a really large settlement s well.

  8. #8
    Founder's Club Member thebigsd's Avatar
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    This is what happens when everyone can sue everyone else. Tort reform anyone?
    "When seconds count between living or dying, the police are only minutes away."

  9. #9
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thebigsd View Post
    This is what happens when everyone can sue everyone else. Tort reform anyone?
    Howdy Amigo!
    I'd just like that criminals who get shot while engaged in the commission of a crime don't get no leeway for suing the people who shot them because they were committing a crime.

    Meanwhile, back at the litigant's table, I don't think people who have been abused by the police shouldn't have a redress of their grievances through a suit filed in court.

    So the exact parameters of tort reform would be a bit messy. No frivolous lawsuits. Fine and dandy. So who gets to decide what's frivolous? The Gubment?

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin

  10. #10
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    M-Taliesin,

    As Gunslinger mentioned, police cannot just go around shooting suspects.

    There is case law (court opinion) on the subject. Tennessee vs Garner, from the syllabus (summary):

    Held: The Tennessee statute is unconstitutional insofar as it authorizes the use of deadly force against, as in this case, an apparently unarmed, nondangerous fleeing suspect; such force may not be used unless necessary to prevent the escape and the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.

    http://supreme.justia.com/us/471/1/case.html

    As long as we cannot trust police to 1) follow the law, and 2) police themselves, it is in our own best interests to severely limit the circumstances where they can use deadly force.

    Police unions, local governments, and prosecutors all have vested interests in fighting lawsuits against police officers, and often do fight them to the nth degree. It is highly likely that the only reason there was a settlement was because there was not only no reason to shoot, there is actually hard evidence that proves it was illegal to shoot. If the evidence was inconclusive or non-existent, you can safely bet the city's attorneys would have told them to stand firm, its the cop's word against three admitted criminals.

  11. #11
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    M-Taliesin,

    Held: The Tennessee statute is unconstitutional insofar as it authorizes the use of deadly force against, as in this case, an apparently unarmed, nondangerous fleeing suspect; such force may not be used unless necessary to prevent the escape and the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.
    Howdy Citizen!
    Thank you for your insight into the case. However, my information is limited to what I learned from talking with the police spokeswoman today, along with the accounts of the incident reported by the local media:

    http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news...30/detail.html
    "Police believe the driver of the truck drove at an officer, hitting him with the truck."
    <snip>
    "An officer was also transported to the hospital with a head injury. He was released early Monday."

    Also this:
    http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news...66/detail.html
    "Officers opened fire and police are investigating whether the truck driver drove at an officer, striking him with the truck, she said."
    <snip>
    "An officer suffered a head injury and was treated at a hospital overnight and released."

    The case was referred to the Arapahoe County D.A., which is separate from the City of Aurora.

    Now I suspect the DA's office investigated the incident and the officers were cleared would have included witness testimony. I would think, considering that witnesses saw the crooks trying to steal things, and called the police because of the situation, they'd have also witnessed what happened after the police arrived. I don't know, but when I've seen police activity in the neighborhood, I tend to watch events unfold and would be surprised if the RP's did not do likewise. If they were interviewed and supported the officer's account, it would make sense that the DA ruled the shooting was justified. But I don't know the scope or witnesses involved in the investigation.

    I am still trying to figure out why the city paid the family of the man who died while engaged in criminal activity. I did not hear back from the City Manager's office today and will call again in the morning directly to his office to learn whatever else I may.

    The facts at hand are that the three drove a stolen truck to an auto shop in Aurora with intent to steal a part from one of the cars. They were observed by witnesses at another shop who called the police. Police arrived and the men got back into their stolen truck with intent to flee the scene. Whether they tried to mow down an officer with their truck is something I don't have verification of at this writing. But it appears reasonable that something happened that caused the cops to fire and one was admitted to the hospital with a head injury. This is the grey area, and I'd bet money those folks who called APD saw what happened.

    Until I talk with the office of the city manager, I'll give the officers the benefit of the doubt and accept their story of events until such evidence proves differently. The fly in the ointment hinges on why the city paid out money to the family of the deceased. That's the rub, and the part of the whole sheebang that does not make sense to me.

    Hopefully, I should know more tomorrow.

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin

  12. #12
    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    Keep us informed. This is a strange saga, to say the least. It sounds like a wrongful death settlement, but if the DA cleared them, it doesn't make sense to settle a civil suit--especially for that kind of money, if in fact they were breaking the law at the time.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

  13. #13
    Regular Member M-Taliesin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunslinger View Post
    Keep us informed. This is a strange saga, to say the least. It sounds like a wrongful death settlement, but if the DA cleared them, it doesn't make sense to settle a civil suit--especially for that kind of money, if in fact they were breaking the law at the time.
    Howdy Gunslinger!
    Even more odd, the family had not filed suit against the city. The city, unilaterally, made a settlement offer when no litigation was in the works.

    Mighty strange stuff.

    I did not have a chance to contact the City Manager today. I got called in early to work and had to stop at our commisary to pick up supplies before heading up to Brighton. My next plan is to contact the office of the City Manager on Monday, as I have the entire day to probe this matter further.

    Blessings,
    M-Taliesin

  14. #14
    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    That's what is really strange about it. Will be interested in why.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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