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Thread: Trigger happy police officer fires shots near student dorms

  1. #1
    Regular Member riverrat10k's Avatar
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    Trigger happy police officer fires shots near student dorms

    "The suspect in Tuesday morning’s incident that prompted campus police to fire two shots turned himself in to the Henrico County jail Tuesday night, following a day-long search."

    " An officer fired two shots at O’Leary, one of them hitting a police car, though Grainger did not see them because her roommate had yelled at her to get her head down. Original reports said that O’Leary had fired the shots and Grainger said that investigaters this morning told her that O’Leary had fired the shots."

    http://thecollegianur.com/2011/12/06...ce-jail/24515/

    Submitted without comment. Y'all can probably guess how I feel about this one.

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    Regular Member Badger Johnson's Avatar
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    The school was shut down and when the suspect was found, police discovered that it was a pellet gun.
    Man this is a confusing report. The cops fired the shots and it was a pellet gun?

    The cops are shooting at a fleeing suspect trying to kill a person who MAY have had an illegal substance (possibly a misdemeanor?). Since when does a misdemeanor warrant the death penalty?

    (Note it doesn't say the suspect tried to run down an officer).
    An officer fired two shots at O’Leary, one of them hitting a police car, though Grainger did not see them because her roommate had yelled at her to get her head down.
    Grainger is the officer. Why was her roommate there?

    ===
    Also
    Owens said O’Leary left the car and got away by foot.
    Earlier in the article it said the suspect was found. But he wasn't found.
    Last edited by Badger Johnson; 12-07-2011 at 08:38 AM.
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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by riverrat10k View Post
    Submitted without comment. Y'all can probably guess how I feel about this one.
    I think your title is your comment.

    To label the officer as "trigger happy" is unfair at this point until all of the details of what transpired are known.
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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badger Johnson View Post
    Man this is a confusing report. The cops fired the shots and it was a pellet gun?

    The cops are shooting at a fleeing suspect trying to kill a person who MAY have had an illegal substance (possibly a misdemeanor?). Since when does a misdemeanor warrant the death penalty?

    (Note it doesn't say the suspect tried to run down an officer).


    Grainger is the officer. Why was her roommate there?

    ===
    Also Earlier in the article it said the suspect was found. But he wasn't found.
    You have totally mixed up different incidents, and different people.
    James Reynolds

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ProShooter View Post
    I think your title is your comment.

    To label the officer as "trigger happy" is unfair at this point until all of the details of what transpired are known.
    That's very true Jim, except for two things.

    First, we both know Riverrat personally and he's one of the more rational and slow to prejudge, of the local bunch. That says a lot considering it's a fairly conservative group to start with.

    Second, the police are releasing statements and so far no one has mentioned being dragged or having been in the path of the car. The fleeing felon rule has been largely gutted and even if it hadn't, there was no indication of a felony being committed (unless you look at the Officer who appears to have attempted to murder the suspect).

    This appears to be a simple possession of Pot and attempting to elude, both nonviolent misdemeanors.

    This looks very bad for the Officer and if covered up or excused away, will reflect poorly on the PD and Commonwealth's Attorney.
    Last edited by peter nap; 12-07-2011 at 09:56 AM.

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    Regular Member Badger Johnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ProShooter View Post
    You have totally mixed up different incidents, and different people.
    Well I just read the article and it looks like a report on one incident. If you can 'unmix' them I'd appreciate it.

    Did the cops shoot? Who shot a pellet gun? Why was Grainger's roommate there?
    A gun in a holster is better than one drawn and dispensing bullets. Concealed forces the latter. - ixtow

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badger Johnson View Post
    Well I just read the article and it looks like a report on one incident. If you can 'unmix' them I'd appreciate it.

    Did the cops shoot? Who shot a pellet gun? Why was Grainger's roommate there?
    Read it again and unmix yourself Badger.
    One is the current incident and one is the closest thing they can remember to gunfire on campus.

  8. #8
    Regular Member Badger Johnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    Read it again and unmix yourself Badger.
    One is the current incident and one is the closest thing they can remember to gunfire on campus.
    Uh, don't believe I posted to you, but thanks anyway.
    A gun in a holster is better than one drawn and dispensing bullets. Concealed forces the latter. - ixtow

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badger Johnson View Post
    Uh, don't believe I posted to you, but thanks anyway.
    Just trying to correct your usual Badger. Maybe you can form another protest group!

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    Regular Member riverrat10k's Avatar
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    Thanks for the characterization, I think, Peter. Not sure I agree LOL.

    Jim, I thought about that title a bit and decided to go with it. I based it on info given about the charges against the guy.

    http://www.wtvr.com/news/wtvr-shots-...,5541876.story

    "O'Leary, 25, is charged with reckless driving and felony eluding of a law enforcement officer. "

    Correct me if I am wrong, and I will be the first to plead "mea culpa" if other facts come to light, but I don't see that deadly force is a rational response to these charges. If he had endangered the officer, they would have charged him with that crime also.

    Some other interesting tidbits from various news reports:

    "At the time of the incident, the police who were on the scene determined that it really wasn't necessary for there to be an urgent alert," said Eckert"

    So no danger after he fled at least. Implies they felt suspect was not armed.

    "An officer fired two shots at O’Leary, one of them hitting a police car, ........"

    Officer could not hit the broad side of car. He took a poor shot, apparently.

    "University spokesman Brian Eckert said that the delay for the text was due to campus police’s judgement. He said that the police would have sent out a message earlier in the day had they determined there was an immediate threat to students."

    Again, no threat from O'Leary.

    "Original reports said that O’Leary had fired the shots and Grainger said that investigaters this morning told her that O’Leary had fired the shots."

    The start of a whitewash? Grainger is a female student.

    Unless I hear otherwise, I will stick with my "trigger happy" characterization.

  11. #11
    Regular Member riverrat10k's Avatar
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    Badger, read the original article CAREFULLY. Your reading comprehension is poor.

    Nap is correct. The reporter is relating ANOTHER incident on campus as one of the few "gun" incidents at the U of R.

  12. #12
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    This:

    http://www.nbc12.com/story/16197502/...-u-of-r-campus
    Left unclear is what, exactly, led to the shooting, and why gunfire was deemed necessary. O'Leary was not believed to be armed, according to authorities on scene.

  13. #13
    Regular Member Badger Johnson's Avatar
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    There's a new article up posted at 9:21 (the previous one superseded?) It's more clear.

    I'm not sure why Mr Nap is being so harsh. It's just a discussion, man.
    A gun in a holster is better than one drawn and dispensing bullets. Concealed forces the latter. - ixtow

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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    News reports aside (because we all know how accurate they are), I still think its a bit early to label anyone as trigger happy. Did the officer screw up? maybe. Did he see what he thought was the suspect reaching for a weapon? maybe....too many variables and not enough facts to make the call. If the officer screwed up, fine...discipline him and re-train. Until we know more, its only speculation.
    James Reynolds

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    Regular Member riverrat10k's Avatar
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    OK, we can agree to disagree, Jim.

    Just my opinion from the "facts" currently presented: the officer fired at a fleeing vehicle and missed at least once; poor shooting and the officer did the endangering.

    riverrat

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ProShooter View Post
    News reports aside (because we all know how accurate they are), I still think its a bit early to label anyone as trigger happy. Did the officer screw up? maybe. Did he see what he thought was the suspect reaching for a weapon? maybe....too many variables and not enough facts to make the call. If the officer screwed up, fine...discipline him and re-train. Until we know more, its only speculation.
    That's all true Jim and it is indeed too early for a final call....but the reaching for the weapon statement didn't come for a while which makes it suspect of butt covering.

    They'd been there for a half hour trying to get him to fess up to smoking pot with no indication of a weapon. If there had been, they could have done a personal weapons search.

    The witness and initial police statement seem to agree. The guy put it in drive and drove away.

    If legitimate reasons for the shots emerge, I'm all for him being exonerated but if not, he's too dangerous to leave in the department.
    Last edited by peter nap; 12-07-2011 at 10:42 AM.

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    Regular Member wylde007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    If legitimate reasons for the shots emerge, I'm all for him being exonerated but if not, he's too dangerous to leave in the department.
    Unless there is incontrovertible evidence that the officer or his partner were in immediate mortal danger, lethal force was not a justified response to this incident.

    What's worse, the officer's shots landed nowhere near their "intended" target. He hit one of his own department's cruisers. What if he had injured or killed a fellow officer? This poor kid who MAY have been guilty of possession would be crucified for capital murder of a police officer, I guarantee it.
    The quiet war has begun, with silent weapons
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    Regular Member Badger Johnson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wylde007 View Post
    Unless there is incontrovertible evidence that the officer or his partner were in immediate mortal danger, lethal force was not a justified response to this incident.

    What's worse, the officer's shots landed nowhere near their "intended" target. He hit one of his own department's cruisers. What if he had injured or killed a fellow officer? This poor kid who MAY have been guilty of possession would be crucified for capital murder of a police officer, I guarantee it.
    How can you have incontrovertible evidence? I think all you need is a fellow officer to allege whatever is needed.

    Reaching for a weapon (post above)? If the kid is driving away and shots are fired at the rear of the car, I don't see how that is possible. Yet, if an officer says it, it will be believed. I do think the kid would be charged with capital murder in the case you outline.

    Lessons learned?
    Don't hotbox in your car on campus parked on the grass;
    Don't flee the police because if they shoot at you it could lead to murder charges.
    A gun in a holster is better than one drawn and dispensing bullets. Concealed forces the latter. - ixtow

    Hi, I'm hypercritical. But I mean no harm, I just like to try to look deeply at life

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    Regular Member wylde007's Avatar
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    Unhappy

    Quote Originally Posted by Badger Johnson View Post
    How can you have incontrovertible evidence? I think all you need is a fellow officer to allege whatever is needed.
    Don't flee the police because if they shoot at you it could lead to murder charges.
    And ain't that just peachy?
    The quiet war has begun, with silent weapons
    And the newest slavery is to keep the people poor, and stupid
    Novos ordo seclorum ~ Mustaine

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    Regular Member Repeater's Avatar
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    Foia?

    Perhaps a curious person could FOIA the incident report.

    Then we all could see if the campus police honor the request or not.

  21. #21
    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Repeater View Post
    Perhaps a curious person could FOIA the incident report.

    Then we all could see if the campus police honor the request or not.
    Never get it. It involves both a criminal investigation and a personnel matter.

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    A lot of stuff I'd like to know about this...,

    and were still getting pieces of the puzzle. I'm not able to get all of the different reports (crappy equipment and limited time), but what's all this about the SUV the suspect was "initially"(?) in being reported as stolen by OnStar? I think we all agree that we still don't have a great idea of what actually went on yet, and have to work with what we've got. Also as usual, Peter seems be everywhere and have inside info on many things (I'm beginning to believe Santa Clause sub-contracts with him when he starts his research for making out his 'Naughty and Nice" list!), so that helps too.

    I'd like to know how this situation progressed to what seems to have been a rather casual encounter IF (and that's a big IF) the Officer knew that the vehicle was reported as stolen. I'm not going to be too quick to criticize any officer approaching a vehicle reported stolen, at 4 o'clock in the morning most anywhere, for at least unsnapping and acquiring his grip. Do we know that the UR Officer had all that info?

    Well, there's way more questions than I have time to type, and I gotta go to bed, but I'd like to carry on this convo Saturday morning at RCD, and I'd love to see you all there. We should have more "facts" by then.

    While I personally would have held off of the "Trigger Happy", riverrat has his own reasons for putting that there, and from what I've seen so far, it's "talking" like a duck, but then again..., I've got an old duck call in my junk drawer . I guess we'll wait and see if it ends up walking like a duck too!

    Here's hoping and praying that "speed41e" had a good day today and heals quickly. "Speedy" recovery "speed"!!!

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    Campaign Veteran T Dubya's Avatar
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    Anyone else find it ironic this happened the day after the campus police informing local police thing at the legislature?

    Cop was dead wrong. All over marijuana. What a joke from the very get go.

    Hey Officer Rod Farva nice police work pal. Now go fetch a liter of cola and man the radio. You're off the street.
    Last edited by T Dubya; 12-07-2011 at 09:21 PM.

  24. #24
    Accomplished Advocate user's Avatar
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    Shooting at someone who is not actually engaged in the commission of a "serious felony" (rape, robbery, murder, arson, burglary) is illegal. Doesn't matter who's doing the shooting or the status of the person being shot at. Even pulling a gun on someone who does not pose a threat is a violation of his right to due process and is good for a civil action against the cop for assault.
    Daniel L. Hawes - 540 347 2430 - HTTP://www.VirginiaLegalDefense.com

    By the way, nothing I say on this website as "user" should be taken as either advertising for attorney services or legal advice, merely personal opinion. Everyone having a question regarding the application of law to the facts of their situation should seek the advice of an attorney competent in the subject matter of the issues presented and licensed to practice in the relevant state.

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    Regular Member wylde007's Avatar
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    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by user View Post
    Even pulling a gun on someone who does not pose a threat is a violation of his right to due process and is good for a civil action against the cop for assault.
    Are you taking the case, then, Dan?

    The quiet war has begun, with silent weapons
    And the newest slavery is to keep the people poor, and stupid
    Novos ordo seclorum ~ Mustaine

    Never argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

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