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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

The Double Standards in Police Shootings

The Guardian reported recently that the officer that shot Walter Scott in the back was laughing after the shooting. People on an adrenaline high sometimes act goofy, so the fact that he laughed seems to be of little relevance. What bothers me is this:

 Patrolman Michael Slager made the remarks during a discussion with a senior officer after fatally shooting Scott in North Charleston on 5 April. A recording of their conversation was obtained by the Guardian. 
“By the time you get home, it would probably be a good idea to kind of jot down your thoughts on what happened,” the senior officer said. “You know, once the adrenaline quits pumping.” 
* * *  
The senior officer told Slager during the conversation to go home and relax, assuring him that he would not have to answer questions about the shooting for days.
In other words, because Slager was a cop, he was given an opportunity that non-law enforcement don't have: the time and luxury to think through your story and get the facts straight before being questioned. Instead of being hauled "downtown" for questioning, he is told he will have 3 days to formulate an explanation for what he did and why.

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