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Mentally ill man shot dead by cop in hospital parking lot - Reno, NV


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In Reno, Nevada, today, a mentally ill man was shot dead in the parking lot of the psych hospital for holding a hammer. He was shot by a "veteran" cop of 26+ years who should have known how to take down a mentally ill guy with martial arts or something, rather than to empty a gun into him.

If you are outraged at this and want to do something, call these people and give your opinion nicely. This mentally ill man was in his 40s and needed treatment, not to be murdered. This is a crappy hospital anyway and he was probably angry because they weren't helping him. I'm not defending him - getting a hammer is not the right way to handle this, but do you really think he was in his right mind and thinking right?

NAMI PRESIDENT IN RENO:

Joe or Bunchie Tyler (775) 322-1346 [Ask them to speak out publicly against this, because they won't unless pressure gets placed on them to do their NAMI duty].

Sparks Police Dept. Non-Emergency number: (775) 353-2231

Westhills Psych Hospital: (775) 323-0478

KOLO TV: (775) 858-8880

KNRC TV: (775) 322-4444

Demand an explanation. Wouldn't a "veteran" cop know martial arts? Haven't they been trained to take down a confused mentally ill person rather than to shoot them dead in the hospital parking lot? Wouldn't the psych hospital attendants know how to take this man down? This man was not rushing at the cop with a hammer, either; he wouldn't put it down when they told him to. Is that enough to get murdered for when other options are available? He was in his 40s and needed treatment. The cops could have called for back-up. They could have done a hundred different things. Please demand that this murderous policeman lose his badge and his pension. He needs to take out his great frustrations on the target range or by shooting an innocent deer, instead.

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You have watched too many kung fu movies.

No, cops are not taught martial arts or something.

They are taught how to take someone down, but that does not protect them from a deadly weapon like a hammer.

A cop doesn't get through 26 years without having learned how to successfully handle thousands of mentally ill people.

I do not think that we have sufficient information to be going on tirades demanding someone lose their job and pension. The police department and district attorney will investigate and provide professional opinions.

a.m.

[edit]

Local report says the patient had created a disturbance at the hospital and left, to which the police were called. He returned with a hammer and advanced on the officer with the hammer raised. He was shot. Not much choice for the cop.

http://www.kesq.com/Global/story.asp?S=5410807

http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/nation/...-writethru.html

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This will probably cause a shitstorm but I agree. I wouldn't think that a cop should use martial arts but if he had to shoot him he should be able to shoot to disable. I hear constantly that cops HAVE to use deadly force because the person is so psycho that theres no other way to handle the situation. But I'm wondering why the hell bother to take marksmanship classes and maintain the ability to operate different types of guns on a regular basis if you can only shoot someone in the chest and kill them. Marksmanship classes aren't elective they're required and after 26 years this guy should have been able to take him down alive or call for a marksman that could. Maybe provide a link so people can know the whole story.

But wait a minute...is this the story that you're talking about? If it is the guy didn't die (yet) if he doesn't die and this story is accurate then I have to say I side with the cop. He shot but not to kill (hopefully) anyway clarify for me

http://news.rgj.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?...om/breakingnews

Lilie

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Police do not "Shoot to kill" they "shoot at center of body mass" until the person is stopped.

It is simply not realistic to shoot to disable/wound.

There is no identifiable body location which can yield someone disabled. Conversely, if you hit a major artery in the torso or any limb, someone can bleed to death in minutes. The other factor which makes it impossible to have a shoot to wound/disable policy is that of the dynamic nature of a confrontation and shooting. Unlike on a pistol range, the target is moving, the decision to shoot is made with only a few seconds warning, and the adrenalin rush and excitement, fatigue of scuffling, renders the best of marksmen highly unpredictable in accuracy.

This policy is been in place across the law enforcement communities from local to federal and military for over 30 years.

Another point to consider is threat distance. It can be demonstrated that someone with a weapon within 22 feet of a police officer can strike and kill the officer before he can draw, aim and fire his weapon. Also, ballistic "bullet proof" vests do not protect against knives. A knife will penetrate right through.

a.m.

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"It is simply not realistic to shoot to disable/wound."

If I shoot you in the leg you go down- if I shoot you in both legs you stay down. In neither of these instances do you die if you've properly called for both backup and an ambulance which you're supposed to do. If a marksman can't hit a man in the leg after 26 years he doesn't need to have a gun. The ability to perform certain intricate tasks is part of a cops job. Hell even I can shoot a man in the leg. And yes you're going to factor in his being a moving target and all that but hey guess what? That's what preparation exercises and MARKSMANSHIP classes are for.

just my .02

lilie

AND the second article said the officers were called to the site at 5 am and he came back at 7 and they attempted to negotiate with him for him to drop the weapon, he didn't and they used deadly force. yep it requires an investigation. They had PLENTY of time to have a proper marksman present as well as an ambulance just in case and the fact that they were close enough to negotiate says there was some hesitation somewhere. The first article makes it seemed like he just flipped and ran at the guy so he unloaded on him. The two stories don't match up. Something smells.

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Actually, there is nothing contradictory in the two articles.

You don't call in a swat team to sit for hours in the early hours of the morning when someone runs away from the hospital.

And again, you can get shot 25 ways in the leg, and you can't guarantee that they will be disabling. I am an expert pistol shot including tactical courses and I can tell you that I cannot guarantee that I will hit someones leg, and certainly not during a dynamic situation.

If nothing else, you should accept the collective experience of a million or more law enforcement officers that 'shoot to wound" doesn't work.

a.m.

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In Reno, Nevada, today, a mentally ill man was shot dead in the parking lot of the psych hospital for holding a hammer. He was shot by a "veteran" cop of 26+ years who should have known how to take down a mentally ill guy with martial arts or something, rather than to empty a gun into him.

If you are outraged at this and want to do something, call these people and give your opinion nicely. This mentally ill man was in his 40s and needed treatment, not to be murdered. This is a crappy hospital anyway and he was probably angry because they weren't helping him. I'm not defending him - getting a hammer is not the right way to handle this, but do you really think he was in his right mind and thinking right?

GAAAHHHH. OK.

!. 26 years makes a veteran cop, yes. Don't denigrate that, 'kay?

2. As said, cops don't get taught martial artsas part of normal academy training--this ain't Honk kong, Jackie Chan "Super Cop" flick here.

3. I've taken martial arts. I'm quite decent at it. Pissed off guy with a hammer? Gimme a gun at some distance, thanx.

4. Murder is a deliberate act of killing someone; to level such an ad hominem attack at this officer is simply disgusting. What would you be saying if the guy with a hammer had harmed or killed someone, eh? Would he be a murderer???

Marksmanship classes aren't elective they're required and after 26 years this guy should have been able to take him down alive or call for a marksman that could .

You talk as if they had him barricaded in a house, with all the time in the world! Maybe call Krispy Kreme delivery too?

If I shoot you in the leg you go down- if I shoot you in both legs you stay down. In neither of these instances do you die if you've properly called for both backup and an ambulance which you're supposed to do. If a marksman can't hit a man in the leg after 26 years he doesn't need to have a gun. The ability to perform certain intricate tasks is part of a cops job. Hell even I can shoot a man in the leg. And yes you're going to factor in his being a moving target and all that but hey guess what? That's what preparation exercises and MARKSMANSHIP classes are for.

NO. Not everyone shot in the leg will go down. Adrenaline, drugs, high pain tolerance, or just not hitting a very sensitive area--someone can keep on coming. Hell, even by sheer momentum or hopping on one leg, whatever. Get hit in the artery, even if they get you to the ER quickly--you could still be a goner. Those femorals bleed out FAST. And you say "if a marksman can't hit a man in the leg after 26 years..." Well, maybe he's just an ordinary cop, with ordinary shooting skills, and can't pop a full clip within 1"? And man, 26 years on the force...what, say, he's in his late 40s? And you people expect perfection?

Y'all watch too many damn movies.

Reality: cops have to be careful. Too many people with too many weapons that are too damn dangerous. And they just want to go home to their damn families. Moral of the day: fuck around with the cops, expect to be looking out a ziploc. So word of advice: DON'T fuck around with the cops.

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I didn't say the swat team I said a marksman now maybe in bfe they don't have a budget for that but they had a two hour window with a warning that a psycho may be coming to a mental facility with a gun. That should've required more than one unit, one SCARED unit. (Poor babies after 26 years if he can't, WITH backup figure out how to call it in or handle him too fucking bad-he's a weak cop and shouldn'tbe on the force-fucking turn in the badge already) You do not necessarily have to call out a swat team to have a marksman. I live in LA with some of the worst gangs in the U.S. you CAN have a single marksman present especially if the team on site has doubts about their ability to handle a situation. That's what the marksmen are FOR. Especially in a potential situation like that.

Oh he had a hammer and SCARED me so in all of my years of gun training I had to panic and unload on him that's how frightened I was. Come on now. They had TWO HOURS to figure out what the contingency plans were. Hell if the guy had 26 years worth of training I'm sure he could have figured out something other than "shoot him til he's dead" but no, you're right one man with a hammer is far scarier than two well-trained officers with guns. Better to kill him outright- he's psycho he doesn't deserve anything else. Fuck it just shoot any mentally ill person in crisis that they KNOW is mentally ill from the beginning and just fucking get rid of us all.

Glad you have your healthy fear of the cops handy and you take your meds. It would suck if you ever had a bad day again and someone called a cop. Jesus Christ if after 26 years of every type of confrontational training and weapons training they couldn't come up with a better ending than this than the mi community is screwed. and I said shoot BOTH legs you could be on pcp and still not run a step.

lilie

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The patient died today.

Haven't you ever seen the cable TV show, Reno 911? I always call it a reality show, because the cops are so very bumbling in Reno.

Once, when I lived in Sparks (where this same cop is from) I had to call 911 because my huge boyfriend was threatening to punch my face in and kill me. I was scared to death and mildly hysterical (rightly so). The cops came out, separated us, while one cop preaches Jesus to me for at least 1/2 hour, and the other cop writes down in his little black notebook "Bipolar." He then proceeds to slyly (he thought) point out this this one word in his little notebook to me, and tell me that they have the 911 tape as evidence of my "mood swings."

This had nothing to do with my mood swings. My boyfriend had come home in a bad mood and was taking "swings" at me.

So that is how they are, and you know they will put their spin on this, and the murderous cop will get off with no harmed standing in the community whatsoever.

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What AM and CNS said. Physically engaging with people is very dangerous. In a real fight I would avoid it at all costs, because I don't want to die and there's a very real chance of that. Disabling someone without getting hurt or killed yourself is very hard, and people can keep fighting despite broken joints, cracked ribs, etc.

Shooting things is hard. Shooting moving people is harder, as evidenced by the low hit rate cops have (1 in 20 or worse, I can't remember exactly but I'm pretty sure it's worse; untrained people have half or less that hit rate). And they're shooting at the center of mass.

It sucks that being mentally ill can make you dangerous, but sometimes it happens. Personally, if I were to become dangerously violent, I'd rather someone shoot me than let me harm or kill innocent bystanders (or a cop), in the same way I'd be willing to kill someone who was trying to do the same thing, mentally ill or no. Cops and bystanders don't deserve to die at my hands, or at anyone else's, whether or not they're mentally ill.

It's not about what the mentally ill person deserved or didn't deserve; it's about keeping whoever is threatening violence from committing that violence. Letting the cop, or other people, or both get hurt or killed just because someone's threatened violence is due to them being mentally ill would be unethical.

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Cops are TRAINED to handle these types of crisis and not every crisis is shoot to kill. Yeah so you all are martial artists none of you are cops. Cops are SUPPOSED to be calm under pressure. They are TRAINED to handle a myriad of difficult and intense situations thats why they are COPS. I swear to God everything is shoot to kill no skill required it seems. Cops have to be regularly recertified to handle whatever weapons they need to use. Their target practice isn't just the one you see on tv with one sheet of paper and you shoot it five times in the heart. They have standing targets, sitting targets, moving targets. It's all about multiple types of training. Apparently 26 years worth for one of the cops.and again if you've gotten to the point where you are so scared that your reasoning ability and ability to be calm in the face of danger and handle your weapon responsibly goes out the window you don't need to be wearing a badge.

That's why they are supposed to THINK about every contingency plan and are supposed to be calm but brave in the face of violence not screaming kids that wet their (two cops mind you) pants when a psycho comes after them with a hammer. They KNEW he was nuts they had WARNING and they had other options. As well as two hours to figure stuff out.

I say they could have handled it differently-saying that a cop has poor shooting skills(1 in 20) so a man deserves to die is not a good excuse. If that is supposedly common knowledge for cops then they should have known they couldn't have handled the situation and called someone that could. They did have two full hours. You're acting like this guy ran out of nowhere at the cop.

No they knew two hours in advance that the man was nuts and coming. Now if they KNEW they couldn't or wouldn't be able to keep control of the situation, why not call someone who could?

They are to PROTECT and SERVE. It could have been handled differently and since the guy is on administrative leave someone else must have thought so too. If this was a clean kill, no problems there wouldn't be an investigation into by the Sparks police department. It would be written off and over.

lilie

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Mellow, you have habit of drawing conclusions and inferences from things that are not logically connected.

Just because you called the police and they didn't do what you wanted them to do does not mean they are ill trained or incompetent. Consider the more detached perspective on your incident:

- An (admittedley) hysterical woman calls 911.

- Police arrive and find no disturbance, no injuries and have no proof of any crime.

- Woman is still (admittedly) hysterical, boyfriend is not.

- Rather than leaving immediately, police stick around, in order to talk to complainant and household members so as to get her to calm down. Meanwhile they observe behavior of both, attempt to elicit further details of alleged crime, determine the potential for further disturbance once they leave.

- Observing no crime, police leave, file incident complaint report in case further incidents occur, history is available.

Observation

* You often place strong significance related to your divining of others thoughts and intentions, e.g. the officer "slyly pointing out..". You did the same in relating to the intake clerk at the hospital "leering" at you in a previous incident. These don't make logical sense in having special meaning.

*Regarding the bible thumper... Hey, you may not agree with him, but so what. A large part of what cops do is social work. At least he was making the effort to engage a distrought woman, relate to her and suggest or discuss avenues of assistance and comfort. To be honest, he is technically correct. If you had been in church, you wouldn't be at home with an abusive boyfriend. ;) If you had a bible you could have thrown it to protect yourself. :):cussing:

a.m.

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I think we should just get Jim Fowler and the rest of the crew from Mutual of Omaha to hit them with a tranquilizer dart. Of course, the first time someone has a reaction to the tranq, the police will get their balls sued off and go back to bullets.

Like CNS said...don't FUCK with the police. They are not there to give a therapy session to figure out if you "really" mean to do harm.

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Cops are TRAINED to handle these types of crisis and not every crisis is shoot to kill. Yeah so you all are martial artists none of you are cops. Cops are SUPPOSED to be calm under pressure. They are TRAINED to handle a myriad of difficult and intense situations thats why they are COPS. I swear to God everything is shoot to kill no skill required it seems. Cops have to be regularly recertified to handle whatever weapons they need to use. Their target practice isn't just the one you see on tv with one sheet of paper and you shoot it five times in the heart. They have standing targets, sitting targets, moving targets. It's all about multiple types of training. Apparently 26 years worth for one of the cops.and again if you've gotten to the point where you are so scared that your reasoning ability and ability to be calm in the face of danger and handle your weapon responsibly goes out the window you don't need to be wearing a badge.

Lilie,

How long ago was it that you completed police training, and how much hand-to-hand experience did

you get at the time? It's quite possible that recruits in the Reno area do not get the same training

that you did, even if you did go through 26 yrs. ago and kept up with any continuing education

requirements.

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Hi All:

Lily wrote:

It could have been handled differently and since the guy is on administrative leave someone else must have thought so too. If this was a clean kill, no problems there wouldn't be an investigation into by the Sparks police department. It would be written off and over.

From my experience...family members with different positions in police depts, it is normal & usually protocol for a cop to be put on administrative leave when there is an officer involved shooting and/or killing.

police depts usually investigate all this stuff. there is a potential HUGE liability when someone is shot and/or dies. and its not necessarily that the police just "sweep it under the rug."

december

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Mellow, you have habit of drawing conclusions and inferences from things that are not logically connected.

Goddamn it, a.m., you act like we are in a relationship or something - the way you are always accusing me of shit and attacking me. Leave me the hell alone.

I'm not safe to post here. I've said it before, I'll say it now. Let go of your obsession with me. I guess I will just stop posting again. Are you "Brian" on that stupid brain-dead board over at About.com? He hangs out among the women and then attacks, attacks, attacks.

You guys get these boards confused with REAL RELATIONSHIPS.

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i do not see a personal attack here. i see a rational debate. if you raise an issue in an internet forum, people are free to disagree with you, including your methods of reasoning.

i think it is a bit much to infer that he is approaching this from a "relationship" standpoint. AM is a very active poster, and all members are free to agree and disagree with eachother. far from being too personal, it seems to me that AM is trying to keep this out of the level of the personal. maybe you should ask yourself if you are projecting onto this situation.

Mellow, you have habit of drawing conclusions and inferences from things that are not logically connected.

Goddamn it, a.m., you act like we are in a relationship or something - the way you are always accusing me of shit and attacking me. Leave me the hell alone.

I'm not safe to post here. I've said it before, I'll say it now. Let go of your obsession with me. I guess I will just stop posting again. Are you "Brian" on that stupid brain-dead board over at About.com? He hangs out among the women and then attacks, attacks, attacks.

You guys get these boards confused with REAL RELATIONSHIPS.

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Mellow, you have habit of drawing conclusions and inferences from things that are not logically connected.

Goddamn it, a.m., you act like we are in a relationship or something - the way you are always accusing me of shit and attacking me. Leave me the hell alone.

I'm not safe to post here. I've said it before, I'll say it now. Let go of your obsession with me. I guess I will just stop posting again. Are you "Brian" on that stupid brain-dead board over at About.com? He hangs out among the women and then attacks, attacks, attacks.

You guys get these boards confused with REAL RELATIONSHIPS.

I'm sure that if anyone else made as many kooky paranoid left field posts as you do, he'd be all over them too. I apologize for not being able to call you on it more often myself. I've just not been that well lately.

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I'm sure that if anyone else made as many kooky paranoid left field posts as you do, he'd be all over them too. I apologize for not being able to call you on it more often myself.

What the hell....? You guys are nuts and you are confusing this board with a real time relationship, and that's not possible.

Goodbye assholes.

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Mellow, I don't think anyone is confusing this board with a real-time relationship. We are not involved with you in any sort of meaningful way. I think everyone is aware of that.

But it does nobody any good to humor their paranoia or delusions (most of the time). I think people on these boards probably recognize this better than most. So when people see posts that seem to be harboring these things, they're going to point them out (sometimes). It's not meant to antagonize you, especially.

I'm sorry you think people are acting like assholes.

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I'm sure that if anyone else made as many kooky paranoid left field posts as you do, he'd be all over them too. I apologize for not being able to call you on it more often myself.

What the hell....? You guys are nuts and you are confusing this board with a real time relationship, and that's not possible.

Goodbye assholes.

There are many valid criticisms to which I leave myself open.

That is not one of them.

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i agree totally with lillie and also with WZ- why the hell wasn't there a back-up plan? why shoot someone when you have time to prepare? i can understand if you are ambushed and clearly must defend yourself, but having had time to prepare makes all the difference in my opinion in this matter.

plastic bullets? tranqulizer guns? even negotiation tactics? if they can get psychos out of houses who are holding babies captive, maybe a trained criminal psychologist could get this man to give up the hammer and no one would be harmed. i don't know what kind of resources these people had, but for sure, they'd have tranqulizers.

it is just a sick case. along wtih the shooting of the "threatening" man on the plane who was a disturbance who made no bomb threats at all. where are the back-up plans?

why do cops reach for teh guns first and the brains second, or last?

it shows us, in my opinion, along with the story of the bipolar girl who is now in a vegetative state in shitcago because of her erratic actions, just how close to being murdered for our illnesses we are. if we forget our meds and something goes wrong, forget it, your life is over. why not non-lethal ways to take someone down? plastic bullets and tranqulizers seem to work in riots and other situations, like gang situations all over the country. i live in a big metro city and we never hear of cops killing people. taking them down yes, but not killing them. i have some respect for our police department because they risk their lives every day and at least use their brains before their guns.

loon

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OK, here's a couple news article dealing with it. It sounds like it could have been suicide by cop. There's going to be an investigation where the facts will come out.

http://news.rgj.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?...50421/1016/NEWS

A psychiatric patient armed with a claw hammer died Thursday morning after being shot by a 26-year Reno police veteran in the parking lot of a mental health hospital.

The names of the officer and the 47-year-old West Hills Hospital patient were not released Thursday evening. The officer is on routine paid administrative leave while the incident is investigated.

Authorities said a call came in before 5 a.m. Thursday about a patient disturbance at the hospital, 1240 E. Ninth St. The patient was gone when police arrived.

At 6:42 a.m., someone called 911 to report a suicidal person was threatening to shoot someone at the hospital, said Sparks police Commander Steve Asher, whose department is leading the investigation.

When the officer arrived, a man walked toward him in the parking lot with a raised claw hammer, Asher said. The man repeatedly ignored the officer's commands.

Asher said the officer feared for his life and fired. The Reno resident died at 9:19 a.m. at Washoe Medical Center. An autopsy is scheduled today.

http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/nation/...-writethru.html

Sparks Police Cmdr. Steve Asher said the man had some sort of weapon and then became involved in an altercation with the officer, who tried to negotiate with him to surrender his weapon.
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so why did they send a cop and not multiple cops, or why didn't he have the right tools? i can understand fearing for your life, but i also cannot understand just shooting someone because you were unprepared. if that's your only option because you were stupid, then so be it, but it still doesn't excuse it.

thankfully there will be an investigation and hopefully someone will be held accountable for this crime.

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i can understand fearing for your life, but i also cannot understand just shooting someone because you were unprepared. if that's your only option because you were stupid, then so be it, but it still doesn't excuse it.

Whoa whoa WHOA--unprepared HOW? Please explain what preparation there should have been? And can you explain this "stupidity"? A cop must be prepared to go into a situation where a suspect may be unpredictable, armed, and ready to commit violence to themselves or others. A cop must do their must to pevent harm to the suspect, but first and foremost the officer MUST prevent harm to others and themselves.

People, it's not so God DAMNED simple as you wish it could be; cops can't carry everything in their trunks, SWAT and marksman don't screch up at the drop of a hat, nobody has all the time in the world, even the best shooters don't always hit where they want, and what ,ight seem innocuous to you can be very deadly to them. TV shows and reality--very different

Cops can feel danger in sooo many different situations--I've had a cop ready to draw on me while I was searching for insurance papers under my car seat--in the middle of town, right by my (Catholic!) college, with half a dozen witnesses and three other cops close by. Because I could very well have pulled out a weapon. How was he to know?

And other times, cops feel no danger--like the time my friend got pulled over by a couple of deputies out on a country road. They're giving him a DUI test; we were non-threatening, gave them all our info, did what they asked. He was straight-forward and told them he had a .45 under the seat. They didn't draw down, and even left me alone near the (unloaded of course) gun.

So you see--when a cop feels safe, even if there's s firearm around, it can be cool. If the situation is tense, then things must be done carefully--by BOTH parties. A cop is always a target. Usually just for verbal abuse, but all too often for physical abuse, even fatally so. I feel sorry for an officer who has to make what seems likely his first shooting, and moreover, his first fatal shooting, in such a long career. While several here are eager to pin the label of "murderer" on him, I'm rather thinking the poor guy has been fairly traumatized by this whole thing.

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