did someone muck with the backend here

Re: Baltimore

1

Can I be very picky and point out this is not in Baltimore, but Baltimore County? Which only means, I guess, that the county police are apparently as dangerous as the city police. But as a city resident, I'm hoping the city police are being more careful these days...


Posted by: saucyturtles | Link to this comment | 09-26-15 4:50 PM
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Except that another person is actually dead.

He put a lot of effort into getting himself shot and his effort was rewarded. Sometimes hard work pays off.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09-26-15 5:31 PM
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Somehow I can't see three shots here - I'm only seeing one.

But what I'm seeing is a guy who wants to die and a cop trying not to oblige. Sad.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 09-26-15 5:41 PM
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"The footage had no audio track, but Johnson said witnesses told police that Earomirski told McLeod 'You don't want to do this' and the 19-year-old 'repeatedly used profanities and screamed and yelled at the officer "I'm going to kill you."'"

And then reached behind his back into his waistband. Horrible outcome, but.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 09-26-15 8:32 PM
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Just called 911 on an apparent fight. Not sure that was the best idea, but when there's a woman screaming, a guy comes out and breaks up whatever was happening, a different guy yells he's going to come back, things calm, and then the guy actually comes back, and apparently has a knife, it seems kind of serious. But I haven't seen anything, just heard.


Posted by: some guy | Link to this comment | 09-26-15 11:21 PM
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6

Yikes. Hope everything works out okay.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 09-26-15 11:22 PM
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Police arrived and it's been pretty quiet. Dispatch seemed kind of annoyed that I hadn't seen anything; sounds like it was up a block so I guessed at the location. I'd been looking out of the window, but I have limited views. I gave my real name, address, and phone number, but they haven't talked to me (which is fine). There was already a call out, they said. I waited 5-10 minutes to see if it would just de-escalate, then called when the guy who may have pulled the knife returned. My guess is the guy who may have had a knife ran.

The guy who intervened did a good thing - I think he heard the woman screaming, she may have even been knocking on his door - but maybe challenging the guy who came back with a knife to a fight wasn't the best idea.


Posted by: some guy | Link to this comment | 09-26-15 11:38 PM
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8

Yeah, someone dying is sad, but I'm with 2,3.


Posted by: F | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 12:37 AM
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9

8: yeah, that looked pretty cut and dried to me.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 5:31 AM
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Couldn't they issue the cops with tranquilliser darts like they use to take down big wild animals when they need to do stuff to them? They seem to work pretty much instantaneously, and in cases like this where the guy really needs to see a shrink rather than a judge, it would seem like a better idea than standard ammo.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:03 AM
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I can think of several reasons why that's won't happen, some of them very good.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:14 AM
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issue the cops with tranquilliser darts

Instead of guns?

Anyway, couple of problems I can think of: 1) in a case like this, where the guy might be pulling a gun, pretty much instantaneously is too slow and 2) I wonder if the dose needed to stop a big dude who is high would kill someone smaller.

Anyone remember when Faces of Death was a thing, and you had to go out of your way to see video of someone being killed, rather than out of your way to avoid it? That was better.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:17 AM
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Mainly, it's enough less safe for the police (I'm pretty sure they aren't actually fast enough to keep somebody from shooting back) that it wouldn't get used in a case like this. I'm also pretty sure it's not 100% non-lethal and you also have to add the increased risk of people getting tranq'ed for in situations where the alternative wasn't a shooting.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:20 AM
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14

I thought non-lethal situations was precisely where tasers were supposed to be a good option? UK cops tend to tase people with knifes, for example, rather than shoot them.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:20 AM
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Or, what ogged said first.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:21 AM
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Setting aside this case, where I don't know the backstory, and it seems reasonable for the cop to think the kid had a gun, yeah, in some situations it would be great to see more use of tasers (here, cops seemed to be trained to think a knife is imminently lethal at 30 feet--gswift?) and in some situations, much less, as cops tase people willy nilly for non-compliance, and the taser is lethal to some small subset of people.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:24 AM
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14: I think you would get tased if you had a knife or threatened with one here. Guns are different.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:24 AM
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Depending on how close you were standing to ogged, of course.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:26 AM
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From what little I know, tasers are not very accurate at any distance. I think the closer the target is, the more the taser is merely pain compliance (the whole-body incapacitation depends on the probes being further apart on the body), and people who are messed up aren't as bothered by pain. It also has to be reloaded after every shot, which is pretty slow.

Ogged, I bet you're thinking of the 21 foot rule? (I think it's a back of envelope calculation that someone charging you will cover about that distance in the time it takes you to draw and fire.)


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 7:01 AM
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Relatedly, now that it is late September, its worth recognizing that the predicted long hot summer of urban riots, post Baltimore, never actually materialized. I imagine this is real cause for disapointment in


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 7:16 AM
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21

... some quarters.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 7:16 AM
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I bet you're thinking of the 21 foot rule?

That's it.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 7:20 AM
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They should probably redo those tests what with all the obesity going around.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 7:23 AM
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I can't see what that cop did wrong. He looks like he's waiting until the very last possible moment to fire - we see him chase after the guy off camera and then he practically (without turning around obviously) runs away from the guy when he charges him rather than shooting. I'm not sure why he had his gun drawn the entire time, but given the way the other guy was acting in the footage I doubt the interaction had started in a cheerful and polite way.

Tranq guns sound nice, but from what I know getting ones that would actually work well would be difficult at best: when zoo keepers/etc. use them they usually have to plan out ahead of time the appropriate dosages, shoot them pretty accurately at particular spots, etc. That's basically impossible in this kind of situation at least. In movies they seem straightforward and easy to use, but in reality trying to give someone a dosage that's enough to incapacitate them (rather than just, well, getting them high) without killing them without knowing ahead of time their mass, general responsiveness or tolerance to particular drugs, any other drugs they might be on, where the injection site itself would be, and so on is probably near to impossible.


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 8:34 AM
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20 is admirably linked and needs to be pointed out by somebody with an audience. Drum, maybe?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 9:04 AM
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23: it's horrible to reach for your gun and get a handful of flab instead.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 9:05 AM
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Hey - that stuff can kill you. Have you seen the heart disease statistics?


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 9:14 AM
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The cops already have tasers, and that just seems to mean that tasers get used more often on cases that probably didn't require any physical intervention, because they're non-lethal.

It sounds like this case may not have left the officer a lot of options, if only because it's a reasonable assumption in the U.S. that crazy person saying that they have a gun has a gun.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 9:30 AM
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They need to issue cops the tranq darts that work instantaneously and completely, like they do for secret agents on TV. Absent those, I'm with gswift; this was involuntarily assisted suicide.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 11:29 AM
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I remain convinced that the US should invest in some kind of immobilizing foam that could be sprayed out by a fire truck.

It wouldn't work for every situation -- I actually don't think it would have helped in this current case, for example. But at least in some cases, it would allow a different protocol to be put in place -- family calls about person in crisis, police show up and keep an eye on them, fire truck shows up and sprays foam to immobilize them so they can be taken away for treatment.

Of course, tools won't solve anything if people don't want to devote time to a nonviolent solution. An acquaintance posted on Twitter a few days ago about a (white, male) Penn student experiencing a mental health break in public and being gently led away by campus security. We have plenty of strategies for dealing with people experiencing MH breakdowns in public; we just deploy different ones depending on the social status of the person. So depressing.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 11:58 AM
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involuntarily assisted suicide
A shitty thing for the officer to have to go through. I'm reminded of train conductors having to watch people step out onto the tracks.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 11:59 AM
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32

I'm not sure we have enough information to attribute suicidal intentions to the guy who gets shot - plenty of people do dumb shit and he could have just had ridiculously bad judgment under pressure. He didn't have the police called on him for acting really erratically in public or anything, so he could have just gotten really jacked up on adrenalin running away and been an aggressive idiot. ("I totally have a gun and might shoot you with it RAAAAARRRRR!!! would absolutely work on a lot of people, I mean, but not usually cops.)


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 12:16 PM
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33

Is it possible that done cough syrup is really that good?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 12:28 PM
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34

I don't really get why the cop felt like chasing him with a gun drawn was a necessary/appropriate response to the original incident.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 12:46 PM
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32: At 100% accuracy? Not without a recording of his mind at the moment, no. But really, trying to scare off a cop already pointing a gun with some faked quick-draw movement? I don't think it would work on anyone prepared to shoot instead of run.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 12:53 PM
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36

Sure, but that's why adrenalin was in there: when people get amped up they do dumb shit, which is probably the explanation for like 3/4 of fistfights, especially if you include intoxication of any kind. I'm not saying he was doing some kind of calculation in his head like "this officer looks like he's 32% likely to shoot me and 56% likely to run away" or anything. I'm just saying he was trapped in a corner and went with "I'M REALLY SCARY YOU SHOULD BACK DOWN"* instead of the much smarter "Yup, ok you got me". And he was definitely bluffing with his hand behind his back for a good long time.

*Which is a really good strategy with a lot of big scary animals in the veldt actually. In fact with some of them (elephants, for example) it's a way, way better bet than running away or standing very still.


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 1:11 PM
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37

Regardless of the teen's mental state, this was likely a traumatic experience for the cop.
34: Do we know why he drew his weapon? Certainly forged prescriptions or running aren't justification, but from the Kira's behavior in the footage it's not hard to imagine that the cop felt threatened.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 1:53 PM
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38

Wait. Was this about "purple dank"? I've heard good things about that.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 2:36 PM
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"Drank", you honky. Aka sizzurp.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 2:48 PM
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40

Cough, cough.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 3:13 PM
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41

I got some codeine when I had my vasectomy. Washing it down with red wine was muy bueno.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 3:33 PM
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Purple dank is probably pretty nice too.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 4:25 PM
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43

Double Ancome No Kids.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 09-27-15 6:40 PM
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I can speak for the cough syrup. It's that good.

I mean, not good enough to get shot over. But good enough to forge prescriptions over, sure.


Posted by: delagar | Link to this comment | 09-28-15 5:39 AM
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45

I was going to try faking a cough first.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-28-15 5:43 AM
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46

Thanks Obamacare.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 09-28-15 5:44 AM
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We called the damp, '70s-vintage rec room Purple Dank.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 09-29-15 3:21 AM
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