Police officers feel that they need to shoot first before it’s too late. Apuzzo (2015) quotes Dr. Lewinski claiming that, “it is justified even when a victim is shot in the back, even when footage contradicts what the officer said happens, or when witness’s testimony says something different”. A police officers word is more trustworthy than a video or an autopsy. It was a young man names Tycel Nelson who was shot in the back but the officer said that he had a gun pointed at him and the autopsy says that he was shot in the back. The police officer statement is what they use in a court of law versus what video have proven or an autopsy. “It takes an average of about a second and a half for a police officer to draw from a holster, aim and fire”, says Apuzzo (2015). That is fast but police officers feel that it is not fast enough. Apuzzo (2015) quotes Dr. Lewinski saying that, “case that settle a lawsuit in a justified shooting it unfairly tarnishes a good officer who was shooting to save his life.” A police officer should try to figure out the whole picture before they act too fast.
Police officers lie and get off with no charges. Apuzzo tells the story of “Officer Robert Murtha who shot three times at the driver of a car that he said sped directly at him knocking him to the ground as he fired. The video from a nearby police cruiser told another story. The officer had not been struck and fired through the driver side window as the car passed him. He was later acquitted of all the charges.” An officer can tell a completely different story from what really happened and still get away with it. It is countless other stories that were not caught on video or have a witness and an officer tells a different story of what happened and got away, but the family of the victim has no closure of what happened to their love one. “Chavis Carter was a 21 year old African-American man who was found dead from a gunshot wound while handcuffed in the back seat of a police patrol car, and his murder was ruled a suicide” states Chaney and Robertson (2015) in their study. Police officer can shot a man in the back while he in handcuff and no charges were brought up against them shows that there is injustice in the system. A police officer can make of a story and the courts will believe it just because it came from a police officer.
In the video is shows a women who is trying to determine whether to shoot or don’t shoot. She makes multiple mistakes and shoots people who were holding cell phones or nothing at all. She was nervous and was reacting too fast to completely understand what is going on in the situations. Apuzzo (2015) says that, “they connect baseball to a police officer shooting or not shoot” by sayings “sometimes a batter swings at a bad pitch just like a police officer shoots an unarmed man”. The comparison of a baseball player and a police officer is treating the lives of others as game. The video goes through different scenarios that officers could and may go through on a day to day basis or sometime in their careers. As a police officers, they know that they are putting their lives on the line everyday but that does not mean to take another person life, just because you are nervous. This video is a great example of how police officers act too fast before they know if the person has a wallet or a cell phone or a gun in their hands.
The injustice of the shooting of unarmed African Americans is alarming. Chaney and Robertson (2015) state that, “as of April 2015, 255 African American have been killed by agents of law enforcement in the United States in 2015 (p. 5). That is about 2.5 African Americans were killed per day in less than four months. In 12 of the 78 cases that were that Chaney and Robertson studied (2015) were indicted or charged and of the 49 of the 78 cases the police officer was not indicted or charged (p. 7). The police officers seem to be above the law that other citizens have to obey. If a citizen was to kill another citizen then they would be charged and serve jail time. Apuzzo (2015) says that, “when they give cops a pass, it just ripples through the system” The thought of having a murder on the streets would be a scary thought but police officers get away with murder often. The thought of knowing the people you would call on if you need help is a murderer. Anthony Lee was shot by a police officer through a window at a Halloween party for having a fake gun. The police officer shot him several times in the back and was not charged. You can’t even dress up during Halloween anymore because you take the chance of being shot because you seem to be holding a weapon. The system is not justified and is not equal to all races.
Police officer often acts without knowing the complete picture. They sometimes assume that the person is a threat and take action that takes away someone’s life. Police officers are so quick to draw their weapon and shot that they do not know if the person has a weapon or not. Sometimes police officers will tell an individual to get their driver license and then think they saw a gun and shot but the person was just doing what they were asked. So now you are in a situation when you have to decide whether to do as the police officer say and get shot and or tell the police officer no and go to jail. You are between a rock and hard place. I know that sometimes when a person has their back a police officer that the officer could react and shoot because the officer does not know what the person has but then it could be nothing or something. Police officers could take cover and try to get the whole story before opening fire on an individual.