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1

They were acting suspiciously so he chased them and shot one of them.

Posted by mirror | October 14, 2007 4:34 PM
2

more like they fled when they saw the cops, the officer saw him grab a black object from his pants, and then shot. in the leg. this isn't overly concerning.

Posted by konstantConsumer | October 14, 2007 5:01 PM
3

As I argued elsewhere, the story from the SPD doesn't add up.

If the kid freaked out as they said and threw down his coat in an 'agitated' manner, why didn't they rush him or detain him then. Actually, that sounds more intimidating and I'm suprised he wasn't shot then as the cop had a gun pointed at him, per the story.

Even then, they let it escalate further by letting him lift up his shirt after taking off and throwing down his coat?

But then, they finally let him reach into a pocket, pull out a cell phone, and then shoot him?

Bullshit.

They likely ordered him to take off his coat and empty his pockets and then either shot him by accident or decided to "teach him a lesson" by making sure he couldn't run again.

Sorry, can't take the SPD's word for anything these days.

Posted by Packratt | October 14, 2007 5:07 PM
4

Can't say I don't blame the pig.

Acting suspiciously + running from a police officer + your 'friend' stopping and obeying the officer + being told to put your hands in the air + taking off your jacket and throwing it to the ground & reaching into your pocket to grab a cell phone while the pig has his weapon drawn = what the fuck was the 13-year-old thinking? Oh yeah. He wasn't.

The parents should be 'understandably angry' with their child, not with the officer.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 5:09 PM
5

This is a tragedy, but all my sympathy is with the police in ambiguous situations, as this one appears to be. If I had to make the decision to kill or be killed, day after day, I'd be a little twitchy too.

Posted by F | October 14, 2007 5:25 PM
6

@3

"Sorry, can't take the SPD's word for anything these days."

True, as well as your comment's message received and duly noted. Perhaps we should wait on this one. However:

"Even then, they let it escalate further by letting him lift up his shirt after taking off and throwing down his coat?

But then, they finally let him reach into a pocket, pull out a cell phone, and then shoot him?"

It was 3AM. You're assuming that the officer knew it was a kid. Our speculation owns a problem that begins with 'two people acting suspiciously'. We don't know that the officer could make-out the age, nor do we the suspicious activity that was displayed.

Cops are easy to hate. In a situation like this, it's easy to pin the tail on the officer. You have to acknowledge that before moving on, here.

For all we know, the officer could tell that they were of young age and was hesitant, as much as possible, to act on it. In the heat of the moment, he was confused (like most of us would be) when the teen took off his jacket instead of putting his hands in the air, lifted up his shirt, and then reached in his pocket to pull out a black object. That object could have been a knife, as well as a gun. Rushing to knock the subject down was a danger in more ways than one. From what we know right now, it could very well be (this is reasonable, c'mon) what it reads to be.

The officer--who has no prior record of shooting--was panicked after chasing two people acting suspiciously, one obeyed, the other didn't; and he stopped to take off his jacket, pull up his shirt, and pull out his cell phone (which the officer could not make out, and given the suspects reaction/actions, could have been anything when considering his bizarre behavior and refusal to abide by the officers commands), which is completely stupid.

Right now, the only person who needs to learn a lesson here is that moron kid.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 5:27 PM
7

I feel the need to comment that it's a lot easier for white people to say they feel ok about this kind of police activity, because we are less likely to be slaughtered in "ambiguous" situations. I don't know the details of this unfortunate scenario, nor about people who are commenting, but an unacceptable number of unarmed Americans die at the hands of police, and they are disproportionately people of color.

Posted by oljb | October 14, 2007 5:31 PM
8

@7, where in the article does it say the kid was black? I just read the article and did not see anything mentioning race.

Interesting that the race card (ie saying how easy it for white people...) was now brought up.

Posted by Just Me | October 14, 2007 5:40 PM
9

Any non-white person on the street is acting suspiciously in Seattle.

The press should give us more details, let us hear the kid's side. This could go either way, but to believe the official SPD press release is like believing a Fox News report on a Repub scandal.


Here's all we know. A kid, a unarmed 13 year old kid, got shot, twice, by an adult officer.

We can assume it was at close range. We don't know the race of either the shooter nor the kid shot. We would conclude the cop was a horrible shot at least. Two shots at close range when he think a gun is being drawn on him?

This will be yet another reason why we need more police oversight.

Posted by Meinert | October 14, 2007 5:46 PM
10

A. if you run from the cops they will want to shoot you
B. keep your hands in plain sight if they catch you
C. there are maybe five 13 year-olds in the state of washington that have a legitimate reason for being out at 3 in the morning.

Posted by uncle stupid | October 14, 2007 5:49 PM
11

#8- I said in my comment that I didn't know the details of this case. The kid may well be white; I have no idea. My comment was about this phenomenon at large.

And what exactly do you mean by "race card"? People are being killed by cops all over America, and a lot more of them are black then one would expect based on population distribution. I'm a white guy, so if I say "I don't mind trigger happy cops" I'm saying that in a context where my likelihood of being shot by a cop is pretty low, while other peoples' likelihood of being shot by a cop is high. That's all I'm pointing out.

Posted by oljb | October 14, 2007 5:50 PM
12

I'm thinking that by 25th and Yesler, it was most likley not a white kid. Plus, where are the parents. Who lets their kid outside at 3am?! I wasn't even allowed to be out that late until I was 18 and out of the house.

Posted by tag | October 14, 2007 5:57 PM
13

A 13 year old was out at 3 am then did something stupid? I think the parents need to he held to account and not expect an appology. And to go a step further the PARENTS should appologize for not keeping their kid in at 3 am putting an officer in a bad position where he responded as he was trained to do. (keep in mind the kid was shot in the leg, a non lethal hit)

The kid pretty much got what he was asking for. I hope the parents do go through a little hell for this.

Posted by Uncle Stupid Jr | October 14, 2007 5:58 PM
14

@7

You felt the need to comment that "it's a lot easier for white people to say they feel ok about this kind of police activity, because we are less likely to be slaughtered in "ambiguous" situations" and yet you admittedly "don't know the details of this unfortunate scenario"--presumably because "an unacceptable number of unarmed Americans die at the hands of police", followed by a handsome caveat regarding skin color? Smooth play.

Actually, no. It wasn't. Perhaps you should read the details of the event in which you feel so eager to discuss/comment before you discuss/comment. That way you will actually have an actual understanding in what you're talking about, as well as a place in the field. Especially if you're going to pull the race card, because, uh, right now...you sound like a fucking idiot.

Juuuuuuuuuust a thought.

@8

It doesn't disclose the ethnicity of the suspect. You know this because you actually read the article. #7 obviously did not. If he did, that only reveals the dipshit macrocosm of his comment.

As for the 'race card' being interesting...I guess. 9/10 when I see the 'race card' pulled on any subject, it's irrelevant and absurd, and I see it pop up (roughly) three times a week. It's one of the few traits that is in the troll's accustomed manner.

@9

"Here's all we know. A kid, a unarmed 13 year old kid, got shot, twice, by an adult officer."

We know more than that. You're singling out the victim's profile like it's an affirming topicality. Shame on you.

@10

A little gross, but arguably (for the time being) 99.9% correctamundo.

@11

Although it's arguably obvious, you didn't announce that your comment was "about this phenomenon at large."

If that's your issue here...well that's your issue. Not exactly sure why you aren't concerned with the details of this specific incident, but OK. That's your issue.

Your entire second paragraph is generic, and is lacking compatible reason.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 6:06 PM
15

Let us hope that the 13 year old has the benefit of parents (or at least one parent or guardian) and a stable home to go back to.

Posted by Andrew Taylor | October 14, 2007 6:08 PM
16

Why did he pull out his cellphone anyway?

Posted by Amelia | October 14, 2007 6:08 PM
17

Poe,
Do you remember the race riots in Cincinnati several years ago? The ones that were preceded by by the deaths of 6 or 7 black men by the Cincy cops? Or that string of police brutality and murder in New York against immigrants? This event in Seattle is part of a widespread phenomenon in the US. So it's not unreasonable to talk about it in that context. And something I've noticed, personally, when talking about this phenomenon in the past, is that the people who are most nonchalant about it when a cop shoots someone are generally the people least likely to also be a victim of similar violence.

The details about this specific incident are especially sad because this vitim is young. I also don't doubt that there are morally mitigating factors in many cases, including this one, when cops shoot civilians. But I don't see any reason why we can't talk about this incident this context of the larger police-violence phenomenon.

Posted by oljb | October 14, 2007 6:22 PM
18

sorry- make that "this incidint in the context"

Posted by oljb | October 14, 2007 6:23 PM
19

My first thought was he was probably a black kid. I'll be quite surprised if he isn't. That's not playing the race card, it's understanding the dynamics of this country and it's police officers.

I'm not too sympathetic to trigger happy officers, ever. I'm not saying I have any better ideas, but lethal weapons in the hands of anyone, even "peace officers" are scary to me.

Posted by Tizzle | October 14, 2007 6:23 PM
20

"its", not "it's"

Posted by Tizzle | October 14, 2007 6:24 PM
21

What is the point in arguing now whether cop or kid may be proven an angel or devil? Our only facts are from a first-draft Sunday media report of a first-draft Sunday SPD report. Once the media has taken note, facts in SPD stories do not often stay the same for long, as I recall. But perhaps this will be an exception.

To me it was most interesting that SPD was concerned the officer had violated policy by shooting so low he could not have killed the child. No matter how little or much more may be known about this case, I can always be glad for whatever made those bullets go lower than policy allowed.

Posted by tomasyalba | October 14, 2007 6:29 PM
22

I'm glad the lefty sloggers support the police here. There may even be a Supreme Court case supporting it.

Running from police gives them the right to shoot you.

Obey the police or they have the right to shoot you.

No wonder no one gives a shit about warantless wire tapping and abandonment of habeus corpus (the right to access to a court if being held in custody by agents of the state).

Hell, has anyone mentioned anything about an actual crime investigation that led to this craziness?

Posted by mirror | October 14, 2007 6:33 PM
23

Oh ho! I just reread the comments. 13 year olds out at 3 am is enough of a social feaux pas that they should EXPECT to be shot?

Posted by mirror | October 14, 2007 6:35 PM
24

uh... I wonder why they didnt release any information about the ethnicity of the boy...

maybe because he was an ethnic minority? and that would have caused an even higher controversy over the VAGUE description of the incident they released.

it will be interesting if the boy(s) releases his own side of the story.

Posted by ZeroYear | October 14, 2007 6:42 PM
25

So far, it appears no crime was initially committed. Two kids on the corner at night, looking "suspicious" is not a crime. Running from a cop is. Shooting a kid standing, unarmed in front of you, not running, is not legal for a cop.

So after they got the kid, was he in possession of anything illegal? Or was he running because he was scared his parents would find out he was out at night?

If a cop thinks a cell phone is a gun, then that cop needs better training. A large majority of the population have cell phones. If pulling one out while being told to empty your pockets is going to get you shot, then we all have something to fear.

A question we should get answered - how many unarmed, young people of color have been shot or beat up, tasered, etc, in Seattle since Kerlikowski has been chief? Would be interesting to see.

Posted by Meinert | October 14, 2007 6:42 PM
26

interesting aside:

Seattle is first major city to legislate a police shooting policy on May 1, 1978.
HistoryLink.org Essay 2433


On May 1, 1978, the Seattle City Council legislates the use of deadly force by police officers, the first major U.S. city to do so. The ordinance limits the use of firearms to self defense, to the arrest of persons who have actually committed dangerous crimes, and to the apprehension of arrested felons who have escaped. Officers are expected to exhaust alternatives to deadly force or be convinced that anything other than deadly force would be ineffective.

The ordinance was a campaign promise by Mayor Charles Royer (b. 1939) to voters concerned about police shootings of unarmed auto thieves and burglars, some of whom were juveniles. State law, dating from the nineteenth century, permitted the use of deadly force by "peaceofficers" to arrest a person suspected of committing any felony.

From March 1972 to May 1975, Seattle police discharged their firearms in 60 incidents, with 25 suspects hit, five fatally. One police officer died in these encounters. Of the 60 suspects, 34 (57 percent) were non-white and 28 (47 percent) were unarmed. Of the 28 unarmed suspects, 64 percent were non-white.

Posted by Meinert | October 14, 2007 6:46 PM
27

Now that we have a full and complete accounting of what happened, I'm ready to evaluate how this tragic event has reinforced my prejudices and served to illustrate the need to support my political agenda.

Yet, I'm torn.

Part of me tends to assume that all criminals are black. Further, any black teenagers on the street, especially very late at night, should be assumed to be up to no good. The police are just doing their jobs, working to protect all of us: something we are unwilling to do ourselves, and so we ask them to. Yet we don't give them the benefit of the doubt when they find themselves in this kind of high stress situation. In the microcosm of this shooting, I find a rich vein of material that I could easily refine into a dissertation on our duty to rally behind the police.

Unfortunately, I also like to feel a certain solidarity with minorities, and to plead their case in the face of the blatant prejudice of the police force. Since part of me assumes that all accused criminals are black, I'm more than ready to assemble the raw factoids of this oppressive act of brutality into a far-reaching campaign demanding reform.

What's worse, the need to hold our dismal media accountable for the shameless exploitation of human suffering and conflict is never far from my thoughts. I can hardly let pass an opportunity to cast in the most extreme terms the media's utter distortion of the facts, and to attack them for using the pain of others to provide fodder for their daily need to attract an audience.

Those are the major ones. I also think it's time we stood up against those who tell us to eat more bran. I'm sick of it and this kid's shooting is not the perfect example of why, but if we wait and wait for the perfect example to come along, we will wait forever. It's time for action.

Posted by elenchos | October 14, 2007 6:46 PM
28

Mr.Poe,

Frankly, the whole problem here boils down to a matter of credibility and accountability. I would be much more prone to believe a seemingly flawed accounting of events if I knew that the police were held accountable to an independent review process and had a history of demonstrable professionalism.

However, we will never be able to agree on what might have happened nor on whether the police officer in question had acted appropriately because you and I will not be able to agree on whether or not the police are credible and accountable.

I have my personal experience that tells me the police are not, you have whatever reason you have to make you believe that they are. So as long as a report such as this is sufficiently suspect I will question it, you will defend it.

Such is life, afraid there is little room for agreement between us except for the fact that it was stupid for this kid to be out at that time of night doing whatever he was doing. However that, in itself, is not worthy of being shot. The other events leading to the shooting are, otherwise and as noted, quite open to debate.

Posted by Packratt | October 14, 2007 6:51 PM
29

OK, let me put it this way:

We're missing imperative information here. I'm not educated in the routine dealing with [any] shootings of underage suspects. I'd hope that regardless of the initial impression at the scene that the officer would be placed on administrative leave--for their mental well-being and likewise further investigation--and that the age aspect ends there.

Granted there are many circumstances here that could come between the officers decisions and the "right" decisions, but we don't know and cannot possibly understand those decisions yet.

We're simply throwing stones at the officer because:
A.) He's SPD
B.) He's the cop
C.) The [shot] suspect was 13-years-old

For now I'll wait for more conclusive info. All I know is that what I have to work with here is missing vital information and the information we have to work with is too temperamental to work with.

IOW: I'm on the officers side...for the time being.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 7:29 PM
30

Poe - what stones are being thrown? To take as fact anything the SPD reports is ignorant at best. And to ignore the stats about SPD bias and violence against minorities, especially young, unarmed minority men, is just plain stupid.

If the SPD want respect, then they need to act respectfully, and when they don't, there needs to be serious repercussions. Until the bad cops are punished and removed, then the good cops will not be trusted.

One thing you left out. From what we know there is a kid, unarmed, who had committed no crime, shot. UNARMED. Don't forget that, it's fairly important.

So far we haven't heard from any witnesses. All we have is the cops word, the cop who shot an unarmed child, that the kid ran, and then pulled out a cell phone. I am certain there is more to this story. No one should pass any judgment until we hear the whole story. It's a sad statement that we can't give any credence to the Police report. But let's hear from the kid who was shot, and from his friend who seemed to be standing next to him and so witnessed the incident.

Posted by Meinert | October 14, 2007 7:59 PM
31

If I am hanging out on a street corner at three am, run away when approached by a cop, throw my jacket off and reach in my pants to pull something out when an officer has a gun drawn on me, I fully expect to be shot.

Anyone who doesn't is a fucking retard. And probably a provocative asshole looking for a fight who deserves to be taken out of the gene pool.

Posted by seattle98104 | October 14, 2007 8:19 PM
32

SPD employs a lot of pigs, but this whole situation was on the kid. Running from the cops? Pulling your black cell phone out of your belt while running from said cops? Is this kid mentally retarded?

I don't think the officer, facing a potential threat in the heat of the moment from his POV, acted at all unusually.

Posted by Gomez | October 14, 2007 8:27 PM
33

Meinert, if the kid did nothing wrong, then why the hell did he run from the cop? None of this happens if the kid doesn't run.

Posted by Gomez | October 14, 2007 8:29 PM
34

31-
Or in this case, the explanation would seem to be that the person in question is 13 years old and still a decade off from have a mature brain. Kids do seemingly inexplicable things all the time.

I have to say I disagree that acting in inexplicable ways while unarmed at 13 years of age is a curcumstance that should result in a summary death sentence, which is what you seem to suggest.

Posted by oljb | October 14, 2007 8:34 PM
35

"Poe - what stones are being thrown? To take as fact anything the SPD reports is ignorant at best. And to ignore the stats about SPD bias and violence against minorities, especially young, unarmed minority men, is just plain stupid."

Plain stupid in this case would be you. Stones are being thrown because the only thing the anti-SPD folk in this thread have to run off of is that the kid did nothing wrong and was unarmed. The kid did do something wrong, or was doing something wrong (obviously), because he ran.

Now to the 'unarmed' part: let's say instead of a 13-year-old it was a 33-year-old. Instead of stopping and obeying the officer, they rip off their jacket and pull out their cell phone (mind you the officer can barely tell what the hell it is they're equipping). I'm sorry, but if you don't think that's an obvious 'no' move, then we could very well be discussing your demise in the future. Because you are fucking retarded. You don't have that thing, that thing that says, "Bad fuckin' idea, maaaan!"

"One thing you left out. From what we know there is a kid, unarmed, who had committed no crime, shot. UNARMED. Don't forget that, it's fairly important."

Really? Gee. That's a pretty bold statement, seeing how we don't know if the 'kid' committed a crime or not. So far we know that he not only ran from the officer, but refused to hold his hands in the air and preceded to take off his jacket, throw it to the ground, lift up his shirt, and pull out 'an object'.

One thing I left out? If you are actually being serious here, you are seriously mentally defective. That, or you're plainly blind sighted with your [assumed] contempt for the SPD, or police officers in general.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 8:42 PM
36

Tizzle -- Go ahead and be surprised.

Are you also surprised that Harriet Walden dumps on the kid (and whoevr hsi adult guardians might be)?

What if (surprise) the three witnesses (Cop, Kid #1, Kid #2) agree as to what happened? Is it still wrong to accept the cop's version of the story?

Posted by RonK, Seattle | October 14, 2007 8:43 PM
37

You people are sick. Truly sick. An unarmed 13 year old was shot by a cop and you pricks are taking the side of the COP?!?! What the fuck is wrong with you?!?!

First of all, anybody who has any common sense KNOWS that there are cops who abuse their authority and their power. You don't need to remember Rodney King or Amadou Dialou or Nelson Fucking Mandela to know it. All you have to do is be giving a hard time by a little Hitler for going 10 miles over the speed limit to know that it's completely normal for cops to overreact.

Second, 13 year olds like to be out late and get into things a little off limits. It's called "exploring," and it's part of growing up! You never sneaked out at night when you were 13? Or smoked cigarettes? Or met your girlfriend in a park? Then you must have been one boring teenager because everyone I knew got into stuff, and may have gotten themselves into trouble, BUT IT WASN'T WORTH GETTING SHOT FOR!!!!

Third, running from the cops is ALWAYS the right thing to do. BECAUSE they overreact and do dumb shit like arrest people who have nothing wrong, lock up bystanders for years and KILL INNOCENT PEOPLE. Jesus, I'm a 40 year old square white guy and I sure as hell avoid the cops as best as I possibly can. I know they're bullies, and I know that things always get far worse once the cops get involved. You think that justifies them shooting me?!?!

I really am disgusted by the knee-jerk defense of this awful crime. Man, you are some sick people on this thread. I'm gonna get a drink.

Posted by Gurldoggie | October 14, 2007 8:58 PM
38

@30

Before I head off for the night, I want to stress this one more time.

1.
You are a fucking idiot, because you use 'unarmed' multiple times as if you were there and could see clear-and-through that the 'suspicious person (not 'teen') was 'unarmed'.

Well tell me this, you fucking know-it-all genius, given what we know; how do you know that the officer knew that the PERSON was unarmed?

***

"From what we know there is a kid, unarmed, who had committed no crime, shot."

Oh, really? He committed no crime? Please explain, Sir Completely-filled-in-on-everything Cannot-possibly-be-a-moron.

***

I'm going out on an asshole-limb here. I hope that in your near future, you're doing something 'suspicious', chased by an officer, refuse to abide by his command(s), and shot. I will express no remorse for your idiotic behavior. I just want you to know that now before you possibly die for behaving like a fuckin' idiot.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 9:00 PM
39

@37

You are the classic example the Republicans hold for how feeble minded our party is.

I'd reply-by-comment to your entire comment if I thought it would be necessary. Quite frankly, I believe that your #37 comment is so inane and futile...uh, yeah. So I don't have to do that.

Why don't you gather some kids to express your [whatever the fuck ever] thoughts on this matter @ your next visit to the city council chambers?

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 9:07 PM
40

I don't know if anyone read the P-I's version of this story, but if not, let me quote from it:

In this shooting, the boy who was wounded is of Asian and Caucasian descent. The other boy is white, as is the officer.

When questioned, the other kid admitted that they were out to tag stuff. So yeah, two 13 year old kids out at 3 a.m. are generally up to no good. And while I can't justify the idea that they deserve to get shot, they definitely had been making a string of poor decisions that night.

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/335437_shot15.html

Posted by Jessica | October 14, 2007 9:18 PM
41

@37: "our party?" I don't know what "party" you're talking about. I'm a member of the party that believes it's wrong to shoot people. Especially unarmed people. My party believes that power corrupts. People in my party don't instinctively take the side of people and institutions who have already proven themselves to be abusive. You seem to belong to a different party altogether. You ain't invited to my party, and I'm sure as hell not coming to yours.

Posted by Gurldoggie | October 14, 2007 9:29 PM
42

When I was the tender age of 16, I was drinking beer in a park with some friends at 2:30am or so. Being teens, we were fairly stupid about it: Sitting at a picnic table, with not only the beer, but a bag of weed and a cassette case (ask your parents what that was) full of speed.

Enter the Council Bluffs, Iowa police. While Council Bluffs is a small town, it is not a peaceful town, and the police are rather hard-boiled, and not to be messed with.

Did we run from the police? No. Did we start removing various pieces of clothing? No. This is what we did: We shut the fuck up, we kept our hands above the tabletop, and we let the cops "confiscate" the beer and drugs. We also took the cops seriously when they told us we'd better go home for the night, and if they saw our car on the street again later that night, they'd bust us.

Was it abuse of powers? Definitely. I'm sure that that beer and those drugs never made it to any evidence room. But we knew enough to know that we shouldn't have been out that time of night, and we certainly shouldn't have been out there with all that contraband.

That's life.

Posted by catalina vel-duray | October 14, 2007 9:32 PM
43

My comment @ 41 was, obviously, addressed to the poor sick man @39.

Posted by Gurldoggie | October 14, 2007 9:40 PM
44

I think the crude basic rule for whether the police had a right to order the kids to stop is that "police may briefly detain a person if they have a reasonable suspicion that the person has committed, is committing, or is about to commit a crime." "This reasonable suspicion must be based on 'specific and articulable facts' and not merely upon an officer's hunch."

Based upon the majority here on slog it would seem that there is a widespread belief that 13 yos out at 3 am by itself creates a set of 'specific and articulable facts' sufficient to order the kids to stop for questioning. Tight police control of all activity on the street.

personally, I see a big difference between an investigatory stop based on my call that I saw some kids have destroyed someone's Christmas decorations and an investigatory stop based merely on the likelihood that kids out at a certain time are likely to be involved in criminal activity. But I would guess at an inquiry all the police have to say is "recent grafitti" or "recent burgalry", and the circumstances that lead to deadly force becomes a legal outcome.

Posted by mirror | October 14, 2007 9:41 PM
45

catalina vel-duray @42:

I'm sorry to tell you this but the age of "confiscate your beer" and let you go is passed. Especially around here youth are a specially targeted suspect class. You see, they need to be "helped". The courts and jail, or threat of jail, is one way to help people like you and I get help when they are 16. Wouldn't your life have been better if you had been taken to jail at 16 for those drugs?

Posted by mirror | October 14, 2007 9:47 PM
46

Personally, this frightens me. OK, the kid shouldn't have been out that late. And sure, the kid shouldn't have run. Finally, the kid probably shouldn't have been rustling around in his pockets.

But shooting the kid? I would hazard a guess that this kid is not comfortable around cops. Personally, I have seldom been on the wrong side of the law, trespassing on the beach kind of stuff, but I do not trust police officers. And this just continues that distrust that is bred among not only kids, but the population in general. I've got a thirteen year old brother, sometimes out on the streets at that time. He doesn't look like a too friendly character, certainly apt to be questioned by a police officer. If he runs (foolishly), is he going to get shot too?

Posted by Jaye | October 14, 2007 9:47 PM
47

The boy is lucky he was not killed. Police are not trained to shoot to maim; once they've reached a decision to shoot (as in this case where the cop might have reasonably thought the boy was drawing a gun), the officer's intention is deadly force.

That being said, this city needs real police oversight and accountability, because the bad cops get away with way too much shit around here. Maybe the police union ought to put more into training their cops to be better shots and less into lobbying for carte blanche with city hall.

Just happy the boy wasn't killed, and hope that he'll learn to make better decisions from now on.

Posted by Joe M | October 14, 2007 10:02 PM
48

#37: Your rabid assumption that the cop shot the kid just for sheer -- what... sadism? abuse of power? -- is knee-jerk reactionism of the worst kind. There's no point in arguing that the kid was unarmed, because the whole reason the cop fired at all was probably because he assumed the object that the kid pulled out of his pants was quite possibly a gun.


Maybe he shouldn't have assumed it quite so fast, but we weren't there, and every police officer probably has some personal experience with having real guns pulled on him or her. So it's not like the cop is just conjuring up danger out of his imagination. He may have his own 13-year-old kid that he wants to go home to at the end of his shift.


And, yeah, kids that age do sometimes sneak out for late-night mischief; but when they put themselves into the late-night city , they are suddenly playing by the rules of that environment. It's a dangerous arena, and it's not going to somehow soften up and get child-friendly just because a couple of 13-year-olds decide to go out into it.


And, #40, I'm a little bothered by your mention of the boy not "deserving" to get shot. This was a quick reaction on the part of the police officer in the face of an ambiguous physical threat. "Deserving" doesn't begin to enter into it.

Posted by Iris | October 14, 2007 10:08 PM
49

Those boys were lucky it was a cop and not a property owner or a real gangsta that found them first. How many of you who snuck out at 13, went to Yesler (or its equivalent in your nearest big city) to tag in a gang area?

Posted by a | October 14, 2007 10:20 PM
50

@43

Yeah. I'm 'a poor, sick man' because I stopped to observe the (so far) disclosed events.

On the other hand, you are an enlightened, blooming example of a spirit unaccustomed to reason and that fascist duh-this-is-what-the-fuck-is-going-on factor.

March forth, humble idiot. "Especially unarmed people..."?

Are you that fucking stupid? No, really, are you? Please. Tell me. And when you do, please supply me with sufficient information regarding how you know the officer knew the person was unarmed.

"I'm a member of the party that believes it's wrong to shoot people."

...and what party is that? I'm assuming circumstances don't fly in that party, ja?

"My party believes that power corrupts. People in my party don't instinctively take the side of people and institutions who have already proven themselves to be abusive."

Your brilliance astounds me. I'm mainly astounded by how your party has been able to alleviate all of the officer's actions with the information provided (which is basically no information at all) to the point where you can comfortably name your argumentative opponent as a 'sick fuck' because they're currently defending what is obviously your [closed-minded] enemy.

You wanna hear something sick? What if his actions were considerably appropriate? You've just wasted 365 words attacking him. As if the fact that he had to make the all-of-the-sudden decision to shoot an underage suspect was bad enough, now he has to deal with over-the-top sensitive bullshit like this.

You don't know the entire situation, "Gurldoggie", and I'm still standing by the fact that your #37 comment is so incredibly moronic that I shouldn't have to explain why.

When you're not too busy blindly caring about 'the victims', perhaps you could start caring about all of the victims, you fucking jerk.

"You seem to belong to a different party altogether. You ain't invited to my party, and I'm sure as hell not coming to yours."

Oooooh!

B
O
O

H
O
O

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 10:21 PM
51

I'm waiting for all the people who assumed the kid was black to apologize.

...

While I'm waiting, I'll just mention that my kids have been taught to always do what the policeman says- the cops have the guns, and when it's your word or theirs the judge believes them. Gurldoggie is right about a lot of stuff, but "running from the cops is ALWAYS the right thing to do" is the single worst piece of advice I've ever heard on the Slog.

Posted by Big Sven | October 14, 2007 10:22 PM
52

*attacking.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 10:26 PM
53

I don't post often, but it seems all the Burgess supporters are pro cop.

I am the most law abiding person in the city, white, and still have had many run ins with cops.

I trust none of them, including my brother in law.

Posted by Robert | October 14, 2007 10:37 PM
54

@53 This is exactly what I'd like to discuss!
Why is it that we as a society feel we can't trust the cops?
This kid might have run because he was doing something wrong, but that is an assumption. Another assumption could be that this kid ran because of the accounts of brutality and unfairness that are so often heard both in popular culture and on the street as it were.

Posted by Jaye | October 14, 2007 10:47 PM
55

*wasn't.

Jesus. Fuck-ups suck dick in hell.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 14, 2007 10:47 PM
56

Um, are black people allowed to carry anything anymore without getting shot?

Posted by Gitai | October 14, 2007 10:51 PM
57

@#54: "Why is it that we as a society feel we can't trust the cops?"

I happen to have some very good reasons not to. Not just that they did what they did to me when I was innocent and a victim of a brutal attack, but that when they realized what they did was wrong they did not admit to making a mistake and did nothing to try and make sure such things didn't happen again.

I hope to share that story with as many people as possible so that they do not trust the police either... All in the hope that the police eventually understand that accountability is useful and necessary for them to do their jobs and for society to trust and assist those who are sworn to protect and serve them.

Such is life.

Posted by Packratt | October 14, 2007 11:13 PM
58

"Why did he pull out his cellphone anyway?"

To dial 911, Amelia, to dial 911.

Posted by mmbb | October 14, 2007 11:24 PM
59

Oh Mirror, don't be such a simp. You don't know anymore about the situation in the CD than I do. And don't kid yourself that those cops back in my day were looking out for us. They wanted our beer, and they wanted our drugs. They would have been as happy to throw us in jail, if it weren't for our stuff. They knew we wouldn't talk, and if we did, we wouldn't be heard. That's a small town for you.

My point was this: Don't fuck with the cops unless you know what you are doing, and what your rights are. And teens don't know either of those things.

While the SPD are not all angels, they are a hell of a lot better than what you see in a lot of towns.

I'll reserve my judgement - especially about the race of the people involved - until I have more information. I'll just repeat this: Kids need to know better than to screw with cops, especially late at night, and whatever "community" they belong to should instruct them of that.

Posted by catalina vel-duray | October 14, 2007 11:31 PM
60

@58

Brilliant opinion.

Yeah, the next, er, first time I'm being chased down by a police officer and ordered to put my hands in the air, I'll be sure to rip off my jacket, pull my shirt up, reach into my pocket, grab my cell phone--to dial 911.

You. Are. Seriously. Fucking. Retarded.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 15, 2007 12:15 AM
61

Poe - all your hype cop loving kid hating aide - we're left with some facts. The kid was in fact unarmed. He was in fact a minority while the cop was in fact white. He had in fact committed only the crime of "taging" if even that. And he pulled out a cell phone while at gun point. A cell phone. And for that he was shot. Only because the cop was either a very poor shot or intentionally shot in the leg was the 13 year old not killed.

Maybe the cop did the right thing and shot the unarmed child twice at close range.

We know this. The cop missed. Even the SPD spokesperson seemed to make an excuse for why the officer strayed from SPD policy and shot in the leg, possibly "pulled the trigger too fast", which could also be interpreted as "shooting too soon'.

Maybe you pro-cop folks never snuck out at 13. I sure did. And when I saw cops I ran like hell. Maybe that was stupid. But it was half because I know my parents would kick my ass if I was caught, and half because it was fun as shit to outrun the cops. But it certainly wasn't deserving of the instant death penalty this officer tried to impose.

Read the non-right wing paper's account of the shooting at - http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/335437_shot15.html

This isn't some conspiracy. It sounds like a young cop's overreaction. Not the end of the world. But the cop who shot probably shouldn't be a cop at least. The cover-up could be a conspiracy. How this is handled will be how we judge the SPD.

If this officer is allowed to be in a position to make this same decision again, then things are more than fucked up in the SPD.

Maybe. We don't have all the facts yet. But for sure, anyone who believes just the SPD version of the initial press release is a fool. We definitely know the SPD version of the events didn't tell the whole story, and it's a shame the people we entrust with protecting us can't be honest and tell the whole truth.

Posted by Meinert | October 15, 2007 1:13 AM
62

Poe - just that you would refer to someone who disagrees with you as "retarded" makes me completely disregard your point of view. Sad you can't just state your opinion without resorting to junior high locker-room insults.

Posted by Meinert | October 15, 2007 1:17 AM
63

Maybe you pro-cop folks never snuck out at 13.

And maybe you never shot someone for fun. It sounds like we could really learn from each other.

Posted by Gabriel | October 15, 2007 6:04 AM
64

This isn't some conspiracy. It sounds like a young cop's overreaction. Not the end of the world. But the cop who shot probably shouldn't be a cop at least. The cover-up could be a conspiracy. How this is handled will be how we judge the SPD. If this officer is allowed to be in a position to make this same decision again, then things are more than fucked up in the SPD. Maybe. We don't have all the facts yet. But for sure, anyone who believes just the SPD version of the initial press release is a fool.
Seriously, what the fuck are you talking about?

Posted by Gabriel | October 15, 2007 6:33 AM
65

Ignore him. He's retarded.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 15, 2007 7:39 AM
66

And now we do have a controversy, as the 13 year old's father asserts the kid was complying with the officer's orders. (The 14 year old, we're told, says otherwise.)

The father also asserts the kids were stopped because the officer thought they were hispanic (and that other presumably whiter-looking kids in the same vicinity were not stopped).

And in this thread we have a couple of adults who will never be grown-ups, advising kids who might someday grow up to do things that will (and should) get themselves killed.

Seattle plays out its stereotypes.

Posted by RonK, Seattle | October 15, 2007 7:56 AM
67

Lot's of 13 year-olds don't really look like kids anymore. I've seen plenty that are as big as any adult and look much older. I saw one a few months ago that I would have guessed was 25, I was really shocked when they said she was only 13. Did this kid that got shot really look like a child or was he one of these mutant freaks that look like their parents have been spiking their Flintstone's vitamins with steroids?

It was 3am. In the dark it would have been hard to tell age in any case.

Under the circumstances the kid is lucky to be alive. Most cops would have put the bullet through the heart not the leg. They are not trained to shoot to wound. And if you've ever lived in a real gang banger area (L.A., N.Y., etc) the kid's "gun" would have been a real gun.

Posted by Y.F. | October 15, 2007 7:58 AM
68

I believe that the cops always shoot in the leg. It's a non-lethal way to subdue the person they are subduing. I don't think they normally shoot twice, however.

Posted by catalina vel-duray | October 15, 2007 8:04 AM
69
Officers are trained to shoot at the center of the body. Seattle spokeswoman Deanna Nollette said it was possible the officer squeezed the trigger too fast and shot low, but said it was more likely the officer shot at the perceived threat.


A good rule of thumb is to read the entire article linked to in the top of the thread, then flame on.

You all realize they haven't even taken an official statement from the cop right? Over sixty rants on this -- most of them book-length.

I mean really. Don't any of you care to learn what actually happened? Are you just here to dump out what is going on in your own head or are you interested in the world beyond?

Posted by elenchos | October 15, 2007 8:13 AM
70

You defending the pigz over the kidz, it'z the same like defending Insuranz companiez over poor kidz, the Burmeez soldiers over the monkz, Blackwater over Iraki civilianz. The guyz with the gunz are the guyz who make the rulez. It'z them what's vulnerable what needz to be defended.

It'z a shame how a mean little twerp can dominate this dizcussion.

Posted by Franzine | October 15, 2007 8:21 AM
71

Don't any of you care to learn what actually happened? Are you just here to dump out what is going on in your own head or are you interested in the world beyond?

Exactly. I'm amazed how many people here seem to think they know exactly what happened.

Posted by Gabriel | October 15, 2007 8:21 AM
72

elenchos- if people wanted to read, they would have finished high school. Far more fun to call cops bad names and fan the racial flames.

Posted by Big Sven | October 15, 2007 8:28 AM
73

Mr. Poe, please go to wherever ecce homo went. (soundpolitics.com? klanville.org?)

Posted by jamier | October 15, 2007 8:30 AM
74

None of what any of you think matters. Because there's no way in hell that the officer will receive any discipline for this.

Posted by Back Off-- Chief K is On the Job | October 15, 2007 8:31 AM
75

meinert - i don't agree with your arguments. if anyone pulls a black object out of their pocket after they have received differing instructions from a police officer the are likely to be shot at. this is one of my greatest sympathies for police officers -- they have to react *before* they can know for certain if it is a gun, a cell phone, or a can of spray paint. that is why you should do what you are told when being held at gunpoint by a cop.

you can believe that and still question the SPD in this case. what you question is the testimony: did the boy actually run? did he take of his jacket or was he told to? did he reach into his pocket or not?

when i first read the account, these were my questions. not, "but was he unarmed?" these questions would still linger, although it seems that the second kid verifies them as true.

i'm reluctant to believe (not "side with" but automatically "believe") the word of a police officer. in this case, the cop seems to have reason for reaction. and that reason does not include "being out a 3:00AM is wrong for any 13 year-old" for whomever thinks that is one of the justifications.

other valid questions are left remaing. they include, did the cops think the people were up to no good because one of them might have appeared to be a minority? and, was the cop more likely to feel threatened by the suspects reaching into his pocket because the suspect may have appeared to be a minority?

Posted by infrequent | October 15, 2007 8:32 AM
76


From http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/335437_shot15.html

"Trotman believes that the officer stopped his son, who is of Filipino and Caucasian descent, and his friend, who is white, because they appeared to be Hispanic. The officer who fired his weapon is white. His son told him that the police "bypassed a couple of white kids who were roaming in the area.""

As a parent, my heart goes out to Mr. Trotman and how he must feel right now. Nobody would want to get that call at 4am.

But having let his son be out at 3am, perhaps he should lay low for a while and avoid looking like an ignorant douchebag by parroting whatever fabrication/justification his son has come up with.

Posted by Big Sven | October 15, 2007 8:33 AM
77
But having let his son be out at 3am, perhaps he should lay low for a while and avoid looking like an ignorant douchebag

Maybe his son broke out of the shackles that all good parents lock their kids into at 9pm?

Posted by jamier | October 15, 2007 8:49 AM
78

plenty of kids hang out past curfew, but how many run from police? and how many pull something out of their pockets.

any teenager should know by now:

1. dont run from cops
2. dont pull out objects running from cops

its a recipe for disaster.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 8:59 AM
79

Still making my way through the comments, but I had to stop and ask:

Mr. Poe, why must you bold and italicize everything in your comments? It's really a pain to read.

Posted by Nick | October 15, 2007 9:01 AM
80

PEOPLE!

The kid who was shot is Caucasian/Asian and the other kid is Caucasian.

The officer is also Caucasian.

Why does everyone assume it was white cop / black kid before the facts are revealed?

Racism works both ways.

Posted by HL | October 15, 2007 9:01 AM
81

cause it was in the central district...

i mean really, the ultra pc faux progressive seattlites have shown how silly they can be in this thread.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 9:05 AM
82

You're right, jamier- how could the dad POSSIBLY control the son and keep him from going out at 3am? There's no WAY ANY parent could have that kind of control on a kid.

My six year old, for instance, just joined the Watchmen on the Walls, and now flings shit on homosexualists all over America. What really chaps my ass (so to speak) is that the little nipper uses my credit card to fuel his hate junkets. (And to order his hookers, which seems to be asking for trouble.) But what am I going to do? What could any parent do?!?

Posted by Big Sven | October 15, 2007 9:09 AM
83

I've never read a "know your rights" manual that said run from police when told to stop, nor has one ever read "whip out a black object from your pants when a pig draws his weapon on you". I know, it's insensitive, but this kid's parents failed at instilling basic tsurvival skills in this stand up model citizen.

Also, it might give insight into the kind of parents this kid has, that his 14-year-old friend's version of the events fly in the face of the my-child-can-do-no-wrong let's pull the race card father.

Posted by seattle98104 | October 15, 2007 9:13 AM
84

Oh my god, I hate this thread. A 13-year old unarmed KID was SHOT... TWICE! That's really fucking upsetting. You think the police was justified? I think the police felt out of control in the situation and compensated by pulling the trigger of his city issued firearm instead of figuring out one of the dozens of ways to get a KID to comply with his wishes. Why did the kid run from the cops at 3am? Because i bet that kid would've been in big trouble had the cops taken him home to his parents. Because kids in that area know that cops can/will fuck you over... especially if you're not white (as I also presume him not to be). Why did he reach for his cell phone? Maybe to call his parents to make sure he wasn't fucked up by some honky cop in a black neighborhood? I don't know, but I'm sure we'll find out all the answers soon... until then I would hope that more of you would be horrified at this incident. Fucking ice-hearted bastards. Fuck all-y'all.

Posted by Carollani | October 15, 2007 9:15 AM
85

@84

One kid was white, the other was half-white. Take two-steps back from your keyboard and let that settle in before you type anymore foaming blather.

Posted by seattle98104 | October 15, 2007 9:20 AM
86

and carollani goes on to be the stereotype I alluded to earlier.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 9:20 AM
87

Something about this subject gets people so worked up that their IQs drop 30. First gurldoggie, and now Carrollani who I normally consider whip-smart, posts a comment indicating that (s)he can psychoanalyze the cop despite OBVIOUSLY READING NEITHER THE MOST RECENT NEWS ITEMS NOR THE COMMENT THREAD.

Posted by Big Sven | October 15, 2007 9:21 AM
88

@84

The cop was black.
The kid was rich & white.
The cell phone had a gun in it.

Posted by cochise. | October 15, 2007 9:23 AM
89

im even more shocked that one kid out past curfew getting shot for running from police and reaching for an what could have been a gun is upsetting to someone, more so than a million more upsetting things. is it because it happened in our charming backyard that it upsets people so much?

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 9:27 AM
90

Big Sven: Kids do things that their parents don't know about. If you do have a 6 year old, he'll lie to you, sneak out, and stay up past his bedtime too.

Racism works both ways.

Yes, but in one of the ways, people get shot because of their skin color. [source: hundreds of them]

Regardless of whether this incident was racially motivated or not.

Posted by jamier | October 15, 2007 9:40 AM
91

so as of now, who is claiming this was racially motivated?

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 9:41 AM
92

@91 the father of the shot kid claims the officer shot his kid because the cop hates mexicans... or something like that.

Posted by seattle98104 | October 15, 2007 9:43 AM
93

I think it's important to demonize the kid's dad for every money quote you can get during the first hours after he learned that his child was shot. If you wait a few days and let him calm down, the things he says will be far less inflammatory. Which is lame.

Posted by elenchos | October 15, 2007 9:50 AM
94

jamier-

You're absolutely right. He will sneak out. And when he does, he will be in trouble PRECISELY because I will be worried that he could have gotten in a car wreck or in trouble with the law.

If either of these things happen, I will not assume that Sven Jr was an innocent bystander in all that happened. We will handle it as a family, not in front of KIRO tv and the PI.

As to the lying part, neither my wife nor I knowingly lied to our parents at any point in our childhoods. Lies of omission, yes, but no lies of commission. I realize these things happen sometimes, but my kids know from experience that lying to Dad is the very last thing that they want to do when presented with a fuckup (well, my nine year old gets it. My six year old is still learning.)

Posted by Big Sven | October 15, 2007 9:51 AM
95

elenchos- come on. The Dad is DAMAGING the environment in Seattle by echoing his son's absurd lies. Like 'em or not, we need cops. Turning a non-racial incident into a PRETEND one belittles the real racial incidents.

Posted by Big Sven | October 15, 2007 9:55 AM
96

Bellevue Ave @89. There is no curfew in Seattle. It is LEGAL for a 13 year old to walk on the sidewalk at 3 am.

Idiot.

Did you think we had a marshall law shoot-to-maim curfew?

Posted by mirror | October 15, 2007 10:01 AM
97

I won't claim that this individual cop was motivated to shoot because of the race of the victim. But I have little doubt that the policies that govern the circumstances in which police can fire would be changed if the people being killed were usually white.

These rules of engagement are important. There are some efforts to limit the circumstances in which cops can engage in high-speed vehicular pursuits. In general a cop can follow just because someone flees, even though that puts lots of bystanders at risk. So maybe it makes sense to take away the rights of cops to chase people. If people are repeatedly being killed in high-intensity, split-second decisions during police pursuit, perhaps police pursuit policies are flawed. The powers that be would probably act to change the rules of engagements if the bloody results were happening in predominantly white, upperclass neighborhoods. But that's not where it happens, so nothing changes, and people continue to be killed and maimed by the police.

Posted by oljb | October 15, 2007 10:01 AM
98

i was not aware that there is no curfew for minors. Where I grew up there was, and having lived here as nothing but an adult I never ran into the issue.

either way, a 13 year old out at 3am seems like a bad idea, for both the 13 year old and as a parent.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 10:30 AM
99

Dude, I totally said that I don't know what the fuck happened. I made some guesses, but I left room for the truth to come out as it eventually will. My presumptions don't matteródo they?óbecause a 13 year old UNARMED kid was still shot. Twice.

Bellevue Ave, you're so so smart. *jack off motion*

Posted by Carollani | October 15, 2007 10:32 AM
100

Bellevue Ave.

I doubt there is a lot of disagreement about it being a [very] bad idea for 13 yos to be out palling around the streets at 3 am. But the problem should be shady characters, not danger of shooting by police.

Posted by mirror | October 15, 2007 10:36 AM
101

You know why we are ice-hearted bastards? Because we were all 13 once, sneaking out smoking pot and drinking beer at 3am, and none of us managed to get chased or shot at when the po-po came by. There is street smarts and there is street stupids. This kid has a huge case of the stupids.

Posted by seattle98104 | October 15, 2007 10:40 AM
102

Solution: Cop dies, kid dies, friend dies, dad dies.

Problemo solved. In more ways than one.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 15, 2007 10:44 AM
103

carollini -- i had reason to doubt the cops version of events, until the other boy backed them up. so while i'm sad when a 13 year old -- or anyone -- is shot, what would you have a cop do when faced with someone who is not following directions and pulling what the cop believes could be a weapon?

Posted by infrequent | October 15, 2007 10:51 AM
104

this is yet another reason for helmut cams.

Posted by infrequent | October 15, 2007 10:53 AM
105

@87, My IQ, and the "drop" that it may have taken are hardly the issue. I have plenty of experience, both first- and second- hand, that the police tend to be bullies who overreact when they're excited, and hurt innocent people as a result. It doesn't take much to figure that out - read today's paper, listen to the news, or just be the wrong race in the wrong place at the wrong time. There are too many cops out there ready to use violence as a first resort.

Anyone with a little experience with young people can think of dozens of ways to talk down a teenager with a spray can and no weapons. It takes a cop with a pistol to put bullets in him, and I think it's tragic. So yeah, when I hear a story of yet another innocent person getting maimed by a police officer, I come to the rational conclusion that some dumb ass with a gun has screwed up. Again.

I don't have kids but I do have nephews and I sure as hell teach them not to trust the police. I'm just flabbergasted by the number of you who assume they did the right thing in shooting this kid.

Posted by Gurldoggie | October 15, 2007 11:00 AM
106

I'm not saying the cop has the right to shoot the kid, I'm saying the kid is a fucking idiot for knowingly and willfully provoking the cop in a society where police brutality is the norm. Kid deserves to learn a lesson in this case.

Both the cop and the kid can be wrong.

Posted by seattle98104 | October 15, 2007 11:09 AM
107

As i read some of the anti-cop sentiments in these comments, I'm reminded of the cop who walked up on the blue house on republican just as the gunman killed himself. i'm sure cops don't think about that when the walk up on someone. or maybe that crazy guy who tried to pull a gun (or was it a screw driver) on a cop at the e. john and broadway bus stop (they killed him, remember).

There may be bad cops, but they risk their lives every day. From the accounts I read, it sounds like the cop went out of his way to keep from escalating the situation. That he shot the kid in the legs goes more to the point.

And for all those who claim that the victim is without blame, how is it that his friend managed to not get himself shot? It seems that both kids found themselves in a similar situation, and yet only one of them managed to cause an officer to fire his gun.

Posted by trolly mctrollerson | October 15, 2007 11:13 AM
108

the danger of being shot by police is mitigated by not running from police and not grabbing at something while running from police.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 11:18 AM
109

Carollani, an unarmed 13 year old that ran from police, and went for a black object was shot twice. I dont expect facts like that to get in the way of your zeal though.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 11:20 AM
110

All I know is "believed the teen was had a weapon" is some excellent grammar.

Posted by Raindog | October 15, 2007 11:21 AM
111

The parents are made at the police? What a joke. The police should be mad at them for not supervising their minor "child." The parents and the little juvie brat need to spend some time in jail until they can get their act together.

Posted by Justy | October 15, 2007 11:22 AM
112

Most of you condemning the cop are being very presumptive. We know NOW that the kid is 13 and was unarmed, but why should the cop have known either fact at the time? Unless something serious that contradicts the cop's account comes (or something that can boost the kid's credibility, like he's an honor student with a perfect discipline record at school) then that's what we have to go on.

One thing in the cop's favor, in my opinion, is the fact that he shot twice. Someone way upthread referenced the guy who was shot 40+ times by the NYPD a few years ago. Apples and oranges, people. You'd have a point if the cop emptied his gun at the kid's torso and head, but twice in the leg? Doesn't sound like a psycho cop to me.

New facts may come to light. Maybe some video of the confrontation exists. Maybe some undiscovered witness will come forward and support the dad's assertion that the boy DID comply with the cop's orders. But until then I can see how this happened and can thank god or whoever that the boy wasn't killed and sounds like he'll make a good recovery.

Posted by Matt from Denver | October 15, 2007 11:28 AM
113

I agree. The gun was in the cellphone.

It was either him, or the cop! You best be trippin' if you think Officer Leeroy aint gonna fuk dat shit.

Posted by Mr. Poe | October 15, 2007 11:30 AM
114

Something about this subject gets people so worked up that their IQs drop 30. First gurldoggie, and now Carrollani who I normally consider whip-smart, posts a comment indicating that (s)he can psychoanalyze the cop despite OBVIOUSLY READING NEITHER THE MOST RECENT NEWS ITEMS NOR THE COMMENT THREAD.

Posted by Big Sven | October 15, 2007 11:34 AM
115

Whoops. Damn cell phone browser reposted. Sorry about that.

No, I'm neither driving nor at an airport.

Posted by Big Sven | October 15, 2007 11:39 AM
116

Doesn't anybody wonder why the police officer is chasing people when he has no crime to investigate connected to the specific individuals that requires their aprehension?

If there is no specific suspicion connected to a specific crime, shouldn't the burden be on the police officer to prevent an interaction they are seeking from accidentally turning into a shooting? This isn't like pulling over a speeder or someone matching the description of a suspect for a specific crime. This was just an attempt at random questioning by the officer.

Posted by mirror | October 15, 2007 11:49 AM
117

I dunno mirror, running when you sight a cop car sounds like probable cause to me.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Illinois_v._Wardlow

Oh wait, it is. And the kids admitted they were out to Tag the neighborhood. Oh, what was your point again?

Posted by seattle98104 | October 15, 2007 11:59 AM
118

@ 116, it's not crime prevention when the police wait until a crime is actually being committed before they act.

Posted by Matt from Denver | October 15, 2007 12:02 PM
119

I was friends in Vegas with a couple of police officers. As a general rule, any person who runs from a cop when approached is to be considered dangerous and possibly armed.

In the heat of the moment, after running after this kid, when the cop sees the kid pull out a black object, how honestly do you expect the cop to react?

It wasn't right to shoot the kid, but the kid royally screwed up by running from an officer of the law. The officer really couldn't have done much else, per his protocols, in the heat of the moment, other than stand there and risk getting shot by a suspect.

All of the retarded arguing here that has gone on all night and through this morning completely belies the fact that this kid ran from a police officer. Why do you run from a police officer if you're innocent?

All of you stop it, quit using this tragedy to push you cop-hater agendas, and think about what actually happened.

Posted by Gomez | October 15, 2007 12:18 PM
120

Why do people in this city distrust / fear / hate Seattle cops so much? What can the SPD do to convince Seattle to trust them again?

Why don't parents of city-dwelling teenagers teach them how to interact with the police?

Why did this police officer pursue these teenagers (without backup) when they ran? Of what did he suspect they were guilty?

Running from a police officer is a crime. I think the crime is called felony evasion.

I've lived in many cities. The police officers in Seattle are by far more professional than those in New York, Texas, and Northern California.

Why are our citizens so afraid of them?

Posted by Why The Hate | October 15, 2007 12:25 PM
121

Question!

The other kid told the cops that they were not just tagging. They were there to cross out other tags. Is that like some kind of impromptu 3 AM graffiti clean-up?

Does anybody know why on earth a kid out for a little lark at night would want to be crossing out tags?

Posted by elenchos | October 15, 2007 12:34 PM
122

#120

Here is why:

1. In October 2004, a 32-year-old Filipino was shot to death by police without warning outside Seahawks Stadium after he fired a gun in the air to break up a fight.

2. In April 2005, Maikoiyo Alley-Barnes was asking why the Seattle police were harassing a friend for littering when they turned on him for interference and started to beat on him with fists and nightsticks along his knees, torso, and face. His head was bashed repeatedly into the asphalt, then pepper-sprayed in the face and arrested. A witness who recorded the situation had his phone confiscated and the recording erased.

3. In August, 2005 Carl Sandidge with no criminal record, was tasered several times by Seattle police and punched for resisting arrest due to appearing to wear a "gang flag." All of the charges against Sandidge were dismissed after officers gave conflicting testimony during trial.

4. In September 2006, DJ DV One [Toby Christian Campbell] was trying to ask why the Seattle police were harassing his daughter during a high school football game but was then slammed to the ground by two officers, handcuffed, kicked in the head, body, and limbs repeatedly, berated, and tasered at least twice, while already subdued on the ground.

5. In January 2007, video captured two SPD officers who choked then planted drugs on George Patterson, a young, wheelchair-bound African-American man who was then arrested by police on "suspicion of selling drugs" at Second Avenue and Pike Street.

6. In September 2007, an Asian couple from Vancouver, BC were tossed on the ground by the Seattle Police after a Mariner's game, handcuffed and taken to jail for jay-walking.

7. Seattle police Chief Gil Kerlikowske had cleared or reduced charges against officers in at least 11 misconduct cases since 2003 despite clear evidence of officers lying or using excessive force.

Posted by Fuck the Police | October 15, 2007 12:37 PM
123

A good, succinct and accurate reason to fear the police is that they are allowed to kill people and that subsequently they are almost never held to account no matter the circumstances of the killing.

Posted by oljb | October 15, 2007 12:46 PM
124

@96: People need to stop referencing Marshal Law. That show died ages ago.

Posted by Greg | October 15, 2007 1:06 PM
125

fearing the police because of some incidents and then contributing to the problem by doing the same exact thing that happened in others (like running from a cop, being confrontational) doesnt help.

honestly, the idea that by not cooperating you're somehow going to make the police back down or change is ludicrous.

sorry to state the obvious but, cops have power, antagonizing those that have power doesnt change the equation, and complaining about it after a cop might be doing the reasonable thing, is fruitless.

I get that cops do bad things, and some, many are corrupt, but that doesnt matter when you are face to face in a police situation. When you try and throw out that any police action is the wrong, or over the top, or unwarranted, then you arent legitimizing the times when they truly are fucking up badly. you just sound like a broken record.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 1:15 PM
126

elenchos -- Does anybody know why on earth a kid out for a little lark at night would want to be crossing out tags?

Lemme guess ... because doing it in the daytime would get them shot before the police even got there?

Posted by RonK, Seattle | October 15, 2007 1:30 PM
127

@122 --

FWIW -- Patterson was arrested for pos with intent to sell a month after that event.

Almost all of these cases you cited are directly related to the SPD's lack of sufficient staffing. Each case, esp. the most glaring uses of violence (Alley-Barnes, Toby Campbell, Sandidge), could have been avoided had the police on scene had enough backup.

Fuck the police? I think you mean fuck the City. Police are forced to use violence to control a situation when they are out-numbered by members in the crowd.

Until we hire, train, and pay more officers, we will have to educate ourselves on the best way to communicate and interact with the over-staffed police officers we've got.

The police will always choose to protect themselves and their fellows before they choose to protect the rights and concerns of the public.

Posted by Why the Hate | October 15, 2007 1:37 PM
128

Why the Hate said:

"The police will always choose to protect themselves and their fellows before they choose to protect the rights and concerns of the public."

I think you've answered your own question.

So lets not put cops in as many situations where they're forced to fire on people to preserve their own safety. There is no fundamental reason why the cops need to be chasing vandals and risking death and murder to do so. It's just not that big a deal. So tell the cops not to chase someone who is spraypainting the side of a building. They don't crack down on that shit in Berlin, and the city isn't really suffering for it.

Posted by oljb | October 15, 2007 1:49 PM
129

@ 120

http://www.geocities.com/mad_phoneman/wto2.JPG

maybe because we hold grudges?

Posted by cochise. | October 15, 2007 1:50 PM
130

The cop could have tazed the kid, but then his heart prolly would have exploded and killed him.

There was nothing in the story about the kid sneaking out of the house. The parents maybe should be supervising their kid rather than let him run around a bad neighborhood at 3am trying to pull some dumb ass stunt. The kid isn't that bright and he paid for it. He could have paid with his life.

Some Seattle cops may guilty of brutality, but it doesn't mean they're all guilty all the time.

Posted by Y.F. | October 15, 2007 1:59 PM
131

@117 "I dunno mirror, running when you sight a cop car sounds like probable cause to me."

Actually, "probably cause" would be sufficient basis for arrest. I think the standard for stopping and questioning is "reasonable suspicion." From the case you linked to one would conclude that fleeing while in a high crime area is sufficient to give an officer a basis for pursuit and detention under Federal Law. In my 2nd post, I recognized how little the law required for a detention, but I don't have to agree with it and some states have more limitations placed on police than Supreme Court interpretations of the Bill of Rights requires.

Regardless of what rights the Republican appointed Supreme Court says I don't have, I still am confused as a citizen why I don't have the right to flee at the sight of a police car if the police do not suspect me of a specific crime.

It is amazing that the law requires me to freeze and be obedient to the police presence before I have even been told to stop!

@118
Seizure of a person should be a big deal. I beleive random seizures, patdowns, and warrant searches should be severly limited, and not just the routine system for crime prevention and maintaining social heiracrchies.

But as folks, especially people of color, have found, the limits on stop and search are pretty much just limited by race and likely social standing, and whether a targetted community is highly organized to resist.

Yes, it is very stupid to incite a pit bull by running from it, but that doesn't absolve the pit bull's owner.

Posted by mirror | October 15, 2007 2:21 PM
132

RonK sez...


...because [crossing out tags] in the daytime would get them shot before the police even got there?

I would think so.

Which begs the question. What on earth would motivate a young teen to risk his life to accomplish nothing more than crossing out some tags? Forget the police -- who has that much of a motive to X out somebody's name on a wall?

Posted by elenchos | October 15, 2007 2:32 PM
133

@129 that is pathetic. anything that the cops did during the WTO can be justified by the actions the protesters took themselves, what with the rioting, looting, etc etc.

the fact you hold a grudge makes you seem like a neutered bitch.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 2:33 PM
134

@128

I agree. I don't know why the cop chased these kids. He hasn't given a statement.

I don't know why he didn't ask for or if he asked for assistance from other officers.

I do suspect he might not have placed himself in this tragic situation if more police were on duty in the area.

I do suspect an officer with 3 years experience shouldn't be asked to make these decisions by himself.

@130 -- I believe police officers with non-lethal or less-than-lethal weapons are required to have lethal back-up before they engage.

Tasing is usually an alternative to fighting with someone. It is rarely an alternative to shooting someone.

Posted by Why The Hate | October 15, 2007 2:52 PM
135

@ 131, if they were seen crossing out tags, I think the police had every reasonable excuse to stop and search the kids, even under the 4th Amendment's most liberal interpretation.

Posted by Matt from Denver | October 15, 2007 2:54 PM
136

elenchos -- "who has that much of a motive to X out somebody's name on a wall?"

Lemme guess ... a kid who is involved with Gang A and is contesting turf tagged by Gang B?

There could be other, dumber reasons, or even innocent explanations, but as long as we're taking turns at this inkblot test, that's the first placec to look.

Posted by RonK, Seattle | October 15, 2007 3:08 PM
137

@133

i LOVE that logic! i now feel like i can solve all kinds of problems with simple blanket justification!

Bellevue Ave for President!

(ps i've never known a neutered bitch to hold a grudge. if anything it makes them calmer. they also stop bleeding and sending out that magic scent.)

Posted by cochise. | October 15, 2007 3:09 PM
138

no, the persistent grudge makes you a neutered bitch. you cant actually do anything about the WTO (you are neutered) so you hold a grudge for years onward (therefore you are a bitch)

The logic of the cops handling the WTO protesters is as follows:

protesters break laws and property
cops break protesters
protesters try to break cops
cops break protesters again
protesters hold grudge for years
cops still do what they want in spite of grudge

you're pathetic. nothing you did or do makes a difference.

Posted by Bellevue Ave | October 15, 2007 3:47 PM
139

If you consider an exactly identical situation to this one, but change one detail, almost everyone's perspective changes:

Cop tells teenager to stop, teen runs, pulls off jacket, turns to face cop, reaches under shirt, starts pulling something out. Cop shoots teen. Then...it turns out that the teen had a handgun under his shirt.

In that case, we'd hear barely a whimper of protest because, well, the kid had a fucking gun. Yet the officer's thought process (and physical reaction) is exactly identical to the actual case. The only difference is that dumb teen decided to whip out a phone at the crescendo of the moment.

If that's the one detail that makes all the difference in determining if the cop is guilty of unreasonable behavior in a chase situation, then that's what we should focus on and forget all the rest. Should the officer have been able to tell during a chase at 3AM that the suspect was pulling out a phone versus a gun? How fast did he pull it out? Was it a pink Hello Kitty phone or shiny and black? How bright was the lighting? How far away was the suspect? Is this a common behavior during an arrest that the officer should have been prepared for?

Just wondering.

Posted by Moltarr | October 15, 2007 4:17 PM
140

@134

If the police haven't been able to give a specific reason for pursuit by now beyond abstract suspicious behavior, then anything they say is likely to be a fabrication.

You're right - it wasn't a taser situation because the kid wasn't physically menacing the officer.

Posted by mirror | October 15, 2007 4:22 PM
141

geez. where were the dash cams and microphones on this one? kudos #112.

and now it's time for a song:

HOO!
bad boys!
whatcha want, whatcha want, whatcha gon'na do?
when sheriff john brown done come for you?
tell me!
whatcha gon'na doo?
whatcha gon'na doo?
heyy yeah
*bad boys, bad boys, bad boys,
whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do when they come for you*
(*repeat once)
police mon give you no bre-eak,
soldier mon give you no break,
_______ mon give you no break
(*repeat chorus)
(forgot a word, don't remember it, sorry)

Posted by east of miss | October 15, 2007 4:43 PM
142

I just have to answer Moltarr's incredible comment at 139. Let's consider this exactly identical situation, but change one detail: Two students at Columbine high school run through the halls of their school, shooting at their fellow students with...soap bubbles. It's all different now, isn't it?

Or how about this one: In Iraq, employees of the security firm Blackwater fire on 17 unarmed civilians with...rotten tomatoes. You see how much your perspective changes with just one little detail?

You doofus. Your "one detail" is what drastically changes the entire situation. Of course the whole situation would alter if the "only difference" was that the cop was in a fire fight. The point is, he WASN'T. The kid had a PHONE. No one shot at the officer and no one could have.

You actually ask "Should the officer have been able to tell during a chase at 3AM that the suspect was pulling out a phone versus a gun?" Fuckin' Eh he should have! That "one difference" was not incidental. It was massive. He was completely unjustified in shooting the boy.

Posted by Gurldoggie | October 15, 2007 6:18 PM
143

@142-

"You actually ask "Should the officer have been able to tell during a chase at 3AM that the suspect was pulling out a phone versus a gun?" Fuckin' Eh he should have! That "one difference" was not incidental. It was massive. He was completely unjustified in shooting the boy."

Well said from the safety of your home.

Posted by Why The Hate | October 15, 2007 7:07 PM
144

WOW, I DONT LIKE THE NEIGHBORHOOD DURING DAYLIGHT HOURS. WHY ARE WE ARGUING A UNARMED 13 YEAR OLD BOY? DUHH I WOULD HOPE NOT. HE IS PROBABLY JUST AS CONFRONTATIONAL TOWARDS HIS PARENT OR PARENTS. WHAT IS THE LIGHTING LIKE AT THREE A.M.?, WHY ARE THEY RUNNING FROM THE POLICE?, WHY IS THIS YOUTH BEING AGGRESSIVE TOWARDS A PEACE OFFICER?, WHAT OTHER CRIMES ARE IN PROGRESS OR HAVE BEEN RECENTLY REPORTED?, WHAT IS THE MAXIMUN REACTION TIME TO DETERMINE IF YOU ARE GOING BACK HOME TO YOUR FAMILY OR THE THUG THAT MAY BE ATTEMPTING TO TAKE YOUR LIFE IS GOING TO SUCCEED?, NOW, WHAT IS IT LIKE TO DRAW DOWN ON A YOUTH THAT IS BEING IRRATIONAL AND AGGRESSIVE TOWARDS YOU AND MAY HAVE A WEAPON?, WAIT THIS INDIVIDUAL REFUSES TO FOLLOW SIMPLE COMMANDS. (TO LATE HE GOT YOU) PEOPLE HAVE BEEN KNOWN TO UNLOAD 3 TWELVE ROAD MAGIZINES IN MERE SECONDS WITH DEADLY ACCURACY.

Posted by FRIDGE | October 15, 2007 11:28 PM
145

When a cop says "Put your hands up" and you put your hand in your pocket instead, they are completely justified in using force. Period. End of Story. The kid's lucky he's not dead.

Posted by Sam | October 18, 2007 4:26 PM
146

HUHMMMMM I WONDER WHOS THE KID.CUZZ ALMOST HALF OF THE SCHOOL,EVERYONE IS SAYING DAT ITZZZ THIS ONE DUDE NAME BRYAN NAKAMARA OR DAICHY.N IM WONDERING IF ITS TRUE.N I BET THAT 13 YEARS OLD IS IN PAIN RITE NOW CUSZZ I KNOW HOW HE FEEL.THE 13 YEARS OLD GOT OUT OF HARBERVIEW HOSPITAL MONDAY MORNING.

Posted by KITTY | October 20, 2007 12:39 AM
147

HUHMMMMM I WONDER WHOS THE KID.CUZZ ALMOST HALF OF THE SCHOOL,EVERYONE IS SAYING DAT ITZZZ THIS ONE DUDE NAME BRYAN NAKAMARA OR DAICHY.N IM WONDERING IF ITS TRUE.N I BET THAT 13 YEARS OLD IS IN PAIN RITE NOW CUSZZ I KNOW HOW HE FEEL.THE 13 YEARS OLD GOT OUT OF HARBERVIEW HOSPITAL MONDAY MORNING.

Posted by KITTY | October 20, 2007 12:39 AM
148

The sad truth is, a disproportionate amount of crime is perpetrated by blacks--many police accept this as reality and as a consequence are far more... overcautious, to put it mildly... when dealing with black suspects. And this screws over the innocent blacks who aren't involved in crime. Without putting blame on either party, anybody who doesn't realize this basic fact is simply too ignorant to make a meaningful comment about law enforcement.

Also, everyone is debating "Can we reasonably expect the police to tell it was a 13 year old boy at 3 am lighting during a chase?" Yet nobody is asking, "Can we reasonably expect that a 13 year old boy, lacking specialized law enforcement training paid for by our taxes, be reasonably expected to identify a law enforcement officer by sight in 3 am lighting?" The article said "they ran when they saw the officer," meaning that the officer never declared he was police or challenged them, nor did it say his demeanor while patrolling. Since this wasn't a Sheriff's deputy, we can assume he was either plainclothes, or wearing a navy blue uniform, and not khaki. We know he was "patrolling," but the article doesn't state whether his demeanor was neutral or aggressive, whether he was walking slowly and deliberately, or quickly and threateningly, whether he was swinging his baton around or unarmed. What was the kid's "suspicious behavior?" Just the fact that he was out so late and that he ran from a mysterious figure approaching in the dark? We're all making a lot of assumptions either way, and we simply don't know because the media has chosen to leave those details out.

I think most of the time, the police are doing their best in a difficult situation. However, we should always be asking questions, because sometimes, they screw up, and they cover it up.

For example: http://www.military.com/NewsContent/0,13319,86767,00.html
Almost as troubling as shooting a man, a U.S. serviceman who had just fought for us in Iraq, no less, for obeying police commands, is the fact that, rather than allowing transparency in their investigation, they confiscated the tape of the incident and kept it from the media for their "internal investigation." Now, I have nothing against a bit of government discretion when the evidence might, say, jeopardize the lives of undercover operatives, but something really doesn't smell right when they censor evidence solely because it embarrasses the wrong people.

Posted by J Jackson | October 21, 2007 2:32 PM

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