Cop in St. Louis suburb near Ferguson shoots and kills black man pointing a gun at him

A near-riot has already broken out in Berkeley, Missouri, two miles from Ferguson, where an armed man identified as Antonio Martin was shot and killed by a police officer after he pointed a loaded gun at the cop. Alastair Jamieson of NBC News writes:

A cop fatally shot a teenager at a gas station late Tuesday just miles from Ferguson, Missouri, police said, setting off angry clashes between demonstrators and officers.

St. Louis County Police confirmed in a statement that an officer from the city of Berkeley had "fired several shots," saying the cop was "fearing for his life" after a male allegedly pulled out a handgun and pointed it at him. A handgun was recovered at the scene, police added.

St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar told a news conference that the officer involved in the shooting, a six-year veteran, had been placed on administrative leave while an investigation was carried out. The officer fired at least three rounds but the victim did not fire any, he said.

"These are nothing but tragedies," Belmar said as he offered his condolences to the victim's family. The officer "will have to carry the weight of this for the rest of his life," he said, adding: "There are no winners here."

Police just released surveillance video from the gas station where the incident took place, showing the victim pointing his gun at the officer. This raises the question of how a police officer is supposed to respond when a suspect points a gun at him or her.

 

I suppose it is possible some people would claim that the cop should just let the perp execute him, but that is not a position easily defended on rational grounds.

But rational grounds are not the basis of the resulting near-riot:

 

Reuters reports:

A crowd of 200 to 300 people gathered at the station after the shooting, and bricks and three fireworks were thrown, two of them at the roughly 50 officers at the scene, he said.

Two officers were injured. Four people were arrested and charged with assault, said Belmar.

We are constantly being told that we need a dialogue on race relations. OK, let’s talk about whether police should not use their weapons and let suspects execute them.

A near-riot has already broken out in Berkeley, Missouri, two miles from Ferguson, where an armed man identified as Antonio Martin was shot and killed by a police officer after he pointed a loaded gun at the cop. Alastair Jamieson of NBC News writes:

A cop fatally shot a teenager at a gas station late Tuesday just miles from Ferguson, Missouri, police said, setting off angry clashes between demonstrators and officers.

St. Louis County Police confirmed in a statement that an officer from the city of Berkeley had "fired several shots," saying the cop was "fearing for his life" after a male allegedly pulled out a handgun and pointed it at him. A handgun was recovered at the scene, police added.

St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar told a news conference that the officer involved in the shooting, a six-year veteran, had been placed on administrative leave while an investigation was carried out. The officer fired at least three rounds but the victim did not fire any, he said.

"These are nothing but tragedies," Belmar said as he offered his condolences to the victim's family. The officer "will have to carry the weight of this for the rest of his life," he said, adding: "There are no winners here."

Police just released surveillance video from the gas station where the incident took place, showing the victim pointing his gun at the officer. This raises the question of how a police officer is supposed to respond when a suspect points a gun at him or her.

 

I suppose it is possible some people would claim that the cop should just let the perp execute him, but that is not a position easily defended on rational grounds.

But rational grounds are not the basis of the resulting near-riot:

 

Reuters reports:

A crowd of 200 to 300 people gathered at the station after the shooting, and bricks and three fireworks were thrown, two of them at the roughly 50 officers at the scene, he said.

Two officers were injured. Four people were arrested and charged with assault, said Belmar.

We are constantly being told that we need a dialogue on race relations. OK, let’s talk about whether police should not use their weapons and let suspects execute them.