This is my ideal of an officer-involved shooting:
Quick summary: police in Iron County, Utah responded to a couple suspected thieves in a parking lot. The female was brandishing a screwdriver. The morons repeatedly refused to obey police orders to disarm(her) and step out of the way for safety’s sake(him).
One officer eventually pulled out his taser and deployed it on the female. Didn’t work. The officer sighed, switched to his pistol and kneecapped the female in cold blood.
What makes this incident more than the usual dopamine hit of watching idiots get hurt is that it represents the flip side of police/civilian interaction.
On the one hand, innocence must protect the civilian; otherwise, he has no incentive to be innocent and society unravels. On the other hand, when a civilian refuses the protection of innocence then he refuses the protection of law. The officer must still follow established procedures but that’s it. Here, Barbie brandished a deadly (if improvised) weapon despite police repeatedly making the reasonable request to put it down, a weapon that probably doubled as a burglary tool, and insulted the officers. At that point, the officer’s concern properly switched to the bystanders instead of the suspect and he dropped her before she could make an attack.
No bystanders were endangered.
No police were endangered.
And Barbie survived. That would probably not have happened had the police waited for her to rush them or something. This is an ideal outcome. The innocent were protected and the guilty were harmed.
The investigating DA said the officer was unjustified but charges wouldn’t be filed. I believe the shoot was justified because the cop protected society from a potential threat. “Society” would have included the female had she chosen to abide by the law when the law was threatening to shoot her.
We don’t need police brutality but we also don’t need police who assume verbally abusive, disobedient suspects with shivs are law-abiding citizens until a jury says otherwise.