Capsicum not an option in fatal shooting

johnboy 14 February 2011 80

The Herald Sun has an explanation on why capsicum spray wasn’t tried before Nathan Doherty was shot by police in Wanniassa:

ACT Policing deputy chief Bruce Hill said officers believed they had the situation under control after talking with the man when he was inside the house for some 30 minutes early yesterday morning. But he emerged armed with a kitchen knife in one hand and a meat cleaver in the other.

“He had his face protected against us possibly using capsicum spray,” Commander Hill told ABC Radio today.

Officers tried to disarm the man with “verbal commands” as he advanced towards them for about 300 metres. He than made an aggressive lunge towards a sergeant, who shot him.

Nathan had previously been shot in the leg by police in November 2007.

The question now is whether we should have tasers out with the general duties police who end up dealing with these situations?


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georgesgenitals georgesgenitals 2:11 pm 14 Feb 11

frannie said :

R.I.P DOZA may your children remember your wonderful smile xx

As for the police!!! they have alot to answer for shoot to wound not kill canberra police are getting too gun happy these days and it makes me sick

Gotta be a troll.

threepaws threepaws 2:07 pm 14 Feb 11

frannie said :

R.I.P DOZA may your children remember your wonderful smile xx

As for the police!!! they have alot to answer for shoot to wound not kill canberra police are getting too gun happy these days and it makes me sick

Perhaps he didn’t make it clear that he was only trying to wound the police with the meat cleaver, not kill them…

fernandof fernandof 2:06 pm 14 Feb 11

Skidbladnir said :

fernandof said :

Agree to all, but doesn’t explain why the first aim was to kill and not to disable.

There’s only one person who knows for sure what the officer was aiming at, but please tell us how you’ve read their mind and know that they intended to kill, rather than unintentionally killed.
Otherwise, make apply some logic and assume they took a simple and effectual method of preventing further escalation?

You know what, you’re absolutely right. My first comment was indeed under the unevaluated assumption that the officers have aimed to the centre of mass in order kill. If that’s not the case, I do apologise and I stand corrected.

In other words, if the officers used their fire weapons in order to disable the target, rather than to kill him, and the target died as a consequence of the shots, then I’ve absolutely no issues with the actions of the police.

threepaws threepaws 2:04 pm 14 Feb 11

fernandof said :

3) Why would a police officer (or anyone else) put the offender’s safety above his own by trying to shoot him in the legs?

I’m sorry to be so blunt, but that’s what is expected from a police officer. A police officer has a great deal of rights that regular citizens do not have, but they also have a great deal of responsibilities and expectations, one of which is to risk their well being in favour of the community they serve. That’s why they are expected go to unsafe areas and keep the peace.

So you are saying that the police officer should have put the life of the person who was trying to kill him ahead of his own?

I think you might be expecting a bit much there…

fernandof fernandof 1:59 pm 14 Feb 11

Ozi said :

fernandof said :

Okay, but this still doesn’t explain why the officers were aiming to kill. It’s still unclear why they didn’t shoot him in the legs.

How about you stand in a darkened street, have a well-built man advance and lunge at you with weapons and then see how good your fine motor-skills and aim is when it comes to shooting him in his (rapidly moving) legs?

Bad luck for me, I know the feeling all too well, as would most of the people serving in active army duty. There are ways to train people to react in split seconds to do just that. I know, I’ve been in such training and had to retrain every 3 months to maintain an acceptable level of skill.

Ozi said :

Seriously, these kind of comments are both inevitable and utterly stupid. It is, however, heartening to see such a strong rebuking of such idiocy by the RiotACT community.

I’m glad you can so confidently announce I’m an idiot. I really am, for you. Then again, I guess I’m just more tolerable than that nobody who said that people who think they know everything really annoy those of us who know we don’t.
(that’s a reference to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bjarne_Stroustrup, but it won’t ring a bell unless you’re into software)

Skidbladnir Skidbladnir 1:52 pm 14 Feb 11

fernandof said :

Agree to all, but doesn’t explain why the first aim was to kill and not to disable.

Well, they very effectively disabled him, there’s just no chance of a recovery.

Also, bear it in mind that although the subject was advancing towards the police, he was armed, and walked past occupied suburban residences for 300 meters.

There’s only one person who knows for sure what the officer was aiming at, but please tell us how you’ve read their mind and know that they intended to kill, rather than unintentionally killed.
Otherwise, make apply some logic and assume they took a simple and effectual method of preventing further escalation?

fernandof fernandof 1:35 pm 14 Feb 11

Skidbladnir said :

fernandof said :

Okay, but this still doesn’t explain why the officers were aiming to kill. It’s still unclear why they didn’t shoot him in the legs.

Too much Hollywood for you.

Bollocks.

Skidbladnir said :

A gun is not a toy.
A gun is a tool of destruction.
Its primary intention is to exert lethal force.
Guns have minimal capacity to reliably inflict a nonlethal injury to a living target.

Basic firearm safety.
1) Do not touch a gun until you are willing to accept all of the moral and legal consequences of handling something which could end human life.
2) Never point or aim a gun at something unless you are willing to accept the moral and legal consequences of pulling the trigger, including the destruction of the target.
2a) Never point a gun at a person unless you are prepared to kill them. If you are not ready to kill your target, do not point a gun at it.
3) Be aware of your target’s surroundings.
3a) Know what is behind and to the side of the targets, assume they will be destroyed if you fire the gun.
3b) Assume your projectile will overpenetrate the target and retain lethal force.
3c) Minimise riochets.
4) Never disengage the safety until you intend to fire.
5) Never put a finger near the trigger until you are ready to fire.

As such, a police officer, gun drawn and pointed at you, finger on the trigger = you are being given your Last Chance Ever.

Agree to all, but doesn’t explain why the first aim was to kill and not to disable.

Skidbladnir said :

Also:
a) The human leg contains the femoral artery, pierce it and your target will likely die.
b) Fracture a bone with a gunshot, you may never use it again.

Very true. However, aiming to kill (centre of mass), will probably create a bigger chance for a lethal shot.

KB1971 KB1971 1:28 pm 14 Feb 11

frannie said :

R.I.P DOZA may your children remember your wonderful smile xx

As for the police!!! they have alot to answer for shoot to wound not kill canberra police are getting too gun happy these days and it makes me sick

Firstly, I am sorry for your loss.

Secondly, are you related to the Mully clan?

frannie frannie 1:17 pm 14 Feb 11

R.I.P DOZA may your children remember your wonderful smile xx

As for the police!!! they have alot to answer for shoot to wound not kill canberra police are getting too gun happy these days and it makes me sick

Ozi Ozi 1:14 pm 14 Feb 11

fernandof said :

Okay, but this still doesn’t explain why the officers were aiming to kill. It’s still unclear why they didn’t shoot him in the legs.

How about you stand in a darkened street, have a well-built man advance and lunge at you with weapons and then see how good your fine motor-skills and aim is when it comes to shooting him in his (rapidly moving) legs?

Seriously, these kind of comments are both inevitable and utterly stupid. It is, however, heartening to see such a strong rebuking of such idiocy by the RiotACT community.

fernandof fernandof 1:07 pm 14 Feb 11

Solidarity said :

you’ve obviously not had any form of training in light weaponry.

Well, actually, I had and hence my question. I’m trained in a variety of assault rifles and handguns, although I’m not licensed to carry any in Australia (which is absolutely fine by me). From 300 meters it would be very difficult indeed to aim at anything, but if the guy was running at them, then they could aim for at least 2 good shots.

It would require them to be calm and wait for some seconds, but I think this could have been achieved in the context of the situation, i.e., no immediate threat from the vicinity and the exit point is known.

And this response is valid for many of the comments here.

The only other comment I’d like to respond is of Tooks:

2) If someone is running at you with a deadly weapon, you would be taking a huge and foolish risk to aim at someone’s legs in such a high stress situation. Missing in this situation is not an option.

Yes, you would be taking a risk, I absolutely agree with you; however, I disagree that it’s a foolish one.

3) Why would a police officer (or anyone else) put the offender’s safety above his own by trying to shoot him in the legs?

I’m sorry to be so blunt, but that’s what is expected from a police officer. A police officer has a great deal of rights that regular citizens do not have, but they also have a great deal of responsibilities and expectations, one of which is to risk their well being in favour of the community they serve. That’s why they are expected go to unsafe areas and keep the peace.

Obviously I do not know the full details of the incident and so I can’t pass judgement whether the actions of the police officers was correct or not – that’s for the internal investigation to decide. Saying that, my comment was specifically for the explanation the deputy chief gave (read the original post) around the incident and I couldn’t find any specifics around why the officers aimed to kill.

Skidbladnir Skidbladnir 1:04 pm 14 Feb 11

Oh, and don’t bring a knife to a gun fight.

Darth Weston Darth Weston 1:01 pm 14 Feb 11

Quoting KB1971: “Re tazers:” …”They dont always work.”

The LAST thing you want to be thinking in that kind of situations is “I really hope this works…”

The Police have a tough job and while I do not disagree with Tasers, it is the copper on the ground who will make a decision. They should be supported for their decisions.

hmm, self-edited rant about police having difficult job….

Skidbladnir Skidbladnir 12:56 pm 14 Feb 11

fernandof said :

Okay, but this still doesn’t explain why the officers were aiming to kill. It’s still unclear why they didn’t shoot him in the legs.

Too much Hollywood for you.

A gun is not a toy.
A gun is a tool of destruction.
Its primary intention is to exert lethal force.
Guns have minimal capacity to reliably inflict a nonlethal injury to a living target.

Basic firearm safety.
1) Do not touch a gun until you are willing to accept all of the moral and legal consequences of handling something which could end human life.
2) Never point or aim a gun at something unless you are willing to accept the moral and legal consequences of pulling the trigger, including the destruction of the target.
2a) Never point a gun at a person unless you are prepared to kill them. If you are not ready to kill your target, do not point a gun at it.
3) Be aware of your target’s surroundings.
3a) Know what is behind and to the side of the targets, assume they will be destroyed if you fire the gun.
3b) Assume your projectile will overpenetrate the target and retain lethal force.
3c) Minimise riochets.
4) Never disengage the safety until you intend to fire.
5) Never put a finger near the trigger until you are ready to fire.

As such, a police officer, gun drawn and pointed at you, finger on the trigger = you are being given your Last Chance Ever.

Also:
a) The human leg contains the femoral artery, pierce it and your target will likely die.
b) Fracture a bone with a gunshot, you may never use it again.

Davo111 Davo111 12:54 pm 14 Feb 11

Why aren’t tazers common in the police force?

– people who are on drugs, are well built, or are wearing thick clothing are “resistant” to tazerings.
– have a huge stigma associated with police abuse.
– have been knows to cause heart attacks.
– there have been situations where people with knives were tazed, resulting on them falling on the knife/stabbing themselves from the involuntary action caused by the tazer.
– Both “prongs” have to dig into the subject to be effective
– You have to be with a few meters of the suspect to shoot them with a tazer.

The guy ran down police, wearing a mask, holding 2 bladed weapons. It very much seems like suicide by cop.

What needs to be done? we really need a complete overhaul of the mental health system. Because the current model doesnt seem to be working

KB1971 KB1971 12:33 pm 14 Feb 11

fernandof said :

Okay, but this still doesn’t explain why the officers were aiming to kill. It’s still unclear why they didn’t shoot him in the legs.

The officer may not have been “aiming to kill” (I know they are trined to do so) & to be honest do you blame them? If someone was coming at me with a meat cleaver & hellbent on doing me bodily harm I would shoot too.

Im sure the officer in question didn’t want to kill him, just stop him. Death resulted, it was the offenders choice.

Re tazers: Why do we need to save some people from themselves? They dont always work.

Solidarity Solidarity 12:29 pm 14 Feb 11

fernandof said :

Okay, but this still doesn’t explain why the officers were aiming to kill. It’s still unclear why they didn’t shoot him in the legs.

you’ve obviously not had any form of training in light weaponry.

Tooks Tooks 12:22 pm 14 Feb 11

fernandof said :

Okay, but this still doesn’t explain why the officers were aiming to kill. It’s still unclear why they didn’t shoot him in the legs.

Whenever police shoot someone, inevitably a bunch of muppets started asking “Why didn’t they just shoot him in the leg?”

Although it’s been explained umpteen times in the past, we’ll try again.

1) Police are not trained to shoot to kill. They are trained to aim at the centre of seen body mass.
2) If someone is running at you with a deadly weapon, you would be taking a huge and foolish risk to aim at someone’s legs in such a high stress situation. Missing in this situation is not an option.
3) Why would a police officer (or anyone else) put the offender’s safety above his own by trying to shoot him in the legs?

johnboy johnboy 12:12 pm 14 Feb 11

fernandof said :

Okay, but this still doesn’t explain why the officers were aiming to kill. It’s still unclear why they didn’t shoot him in the legs.

For a start any time they miss means a bullet is heading god-knows where in a built up environment.

But aiming for the centre of mass is always advised.

fernandof fernandof 12:07 pm 14 Feb 11

Okay, but this still doesn’t explain why the officers were aiming to kill. It’s still unclear why they didn’t shoot him in the legs.

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