Wow. Can it be? An execution by cops perfectly legal. Never heard that before...Well, isn't this surprising?
Four police officers as witnesses on one side, and one dead man on the other side. Prosecutor declares, "Nothing to see here, move along!"
TEXARKANA -- The shooting of north Caddo Parish attorney John Morneau, who was killed as law officers tried to arrest him in a dispute over a hunting lease, was justified because Morneau drew a gun on them, the Miller County, Ark., prosecuting attorney said.
"This office has concluded the use of deadly physical force by law enforcement officer(s) was authorized under Arkansas law," Prosecuting Attorney Carlton Jones said in a letter to Arkansas State Police, who investigated the shooting.
Miller sheriff's Sgt. Robert Tibbit, who shot Morneau, acted in a "reasonable and lawful" manner, the prosecutor concluded.
Morneau, 71, was shot last October. He had been involved in a dispute with an Arkansas hunting club over his property line near the Caddo Parish-Miller County line. Morneau believed hunting club members were encroaching on his land.
The dispute between Morneau and the hunting club had gotten ugly, with complaints of vandalism. Law officers said three Arkansas game wardens took a Miller County sheriff's deputy with them on Oct. 10 to arrest Morneau for threatening people.
(More at link, above)
Soooo.... while AGFC wardens are LEOs, since when do they serve as the primary agency for warrant service, with just a single deputy along as backup? On which side of the disputed state border did this occur? Why did four Arkansas LEOs wait in the woods just on the off chance one particular man would enter that place at that date and time?
Indeed. From my private correspondence with k9lawyer, I believe he has the right focus. Although it might frustrate us in the short term, not everything will be made public right now. He's got a client to represent and see made whole, and then the same information can possibly be used for criminal charges under federal civil rights laws.Much remains to be seen and heard.
It may be a while, but obviously we have not heard the last of this.
Thanks for your input k9lawyer.