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Sonoma County Deputy Who Shot Andy Lopez Identified

| October 28, 2013
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The Sonoma County Sheriff's Department released this photo of a replica assault rifle they say a 13-year-old boy was carrying when shot and killed by deputies.

The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department released this photo of a replica assault rifle they say Andy Lopez was carrying when shot dead by a deputy.

The Santa Rosa Press Democrat reported this morning that the sheriff’s deputy who shot and killed 13-year-old Andy Lopez last Tuesday is Erick Gelhaus, 48.

The Press Democrat says Gelhaus, who joined the sheriff’s office in 1989, is “a firearms expert, Iraq War veteran and prolific contributor to magazines and online forums dealing with guns and police use of force.” (Here’s a post on ammunition Gelhaus wrote just two weeks ago for the site Modern Service Weapons.) He is also a training officer, who was supervising the other deputy at the scene of the shooting.

Gelhaus and another deputy encountered Lopez while he was carrying a toy BB gun that the deputies mistook for an AK-47 assault rifle. They ordered him to drop the gun, and as he started to turn around, Gelhaus fired eight shots, hitting Lopez seven times. He died on the scene. The shooting is now under investigation by the FBI as well as a joint investigation by the Santa Rosa and Petaluma police departments, and the Sonoma County District Attorney’s Office.

Gelhaus’ LinkedIn profile lists him as a staff writer for S.W.A.T. Magazine and an instructor for Gunsite Academy, which offers gun training courses in Arizona. It also lists stints in the Army and National Guard.

The Press Democrat writes that “Gelhaus has been a frequent advocate in his writing for a prepared, aggressive stance in law enforcement, a profession he has described as a ‘calling’ and likened to a ‘contact sport.’” An article he wrote for S.W.A.T. Magazine in 2008, the paper  reports, “about strategies for surviving an ambush in the ‘kill zone,’” described the “nanoseconds (that) seem like minutes as you scramble to react while simultaneously thinking about your children and spouse.”

As Dan Brekke blogged on Friday, a timeline of the incident released by Santa Rosa police shows that just 10 seconds elapsed between the time Gelhaus and his partner first reported spotting Lopez  and the time they reported that shots were fired. In that interval, according to official accounts, the deputies pulled up behind Lopez, called for backup, took cover behind their open car doors, and warned him twice to drop his gun.

Another snippet from his online writings, from S.W.A.T. in 2008:

“Today is the day you may need to kill someone in order to go home.”

And remarkably, in a 2005-2006 debate on The Firing Line forum about the justification for shooting someone who brandishes a BB Gun, Gelhaus contributed this:

“It’s going to come down to YOUR ability to articulate to law enforcement and very likely the Court that you were in fear of death or serious bodily injury. I think we keep coming back to this, articulation — your ability to explain why — will be quite significant.”

In 2004, according to the Press Democrat, the sheriff’s office awarded Gelhaus its Medal of Valor for pulling occupants out of a burning vehicle. The full profile on Gelhaus here.

In other news related to the shooting, the paper said more than 1,000 people attended Lopez’s viewing service Sunday.

Only about 150 people at a time could fit in the room at the Windsor-Healdsburg Mortuary on Old Redwood Highway where the service was being held. A long line of people, many carrying white carnations, many of them young and wearing T-shirts bearing Andy Lopez’s photograph, waited to pay their respects.

They filed through the hall throughout the day, placing flowers on the casket. Parents held toddlers close. Teens in white shirts with Lopez’ photo walked arm-in-arm.

The casket was surrounded by flowers and enlarged photos of Andy Lopez. In one photo Lopez wore his characteristic beanie hat and in another he saluted the sky. In a third, Lopez beamed from the back seat of a car, wearing a pink vest and tie.

At one point, Rodrigo Lopez appeared to try to pull his 13-year-old son’s body from the casket and a crowd of family and friends rapidly drew in to enclose and comfort him. Full article

Here’s a video report from KPIX on the memorial and local reaction.

On Friday, Time posted an article on the “latest in a long line of incidents of police shooting — and sometimes killing — people whom they have have mistakenly thought to be armed with a real firearm.”

The Department of Justice says the federal government doesn’t keep ongoing statistics on the trend, but in a 1990 paper funded by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. police reported that they had used or threatened to use force “in a confrontation where an imitation gun had been mistaken for a real firearm” at a rate of about 200 incidents per year. The paper’s authors suggested that this number was “significantly underreported.” A series of toy gun-related deaths in the late 80s helped pass a federal amendment, sponsored by Republican Sen. Bob Dole, that requires all toy, “look-alike,” or imitation firearms to have a bright orange plug or other salient marking. But manufacturers don’t always adhere to required standards and markings can be altered, according to law enforcement.

The replica that Lopez was carrying did not have an orange tip, as required by law.

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  • kriddaz@yahoo.com

    Firearms expert, huh?

    • David Phillips

      7 / 8 shots hit their mark. Looks like all those years of working hard to be a professional killer finally paid off. Guessing he also got some good real world practice murdering women and children while pillaging Iraq with his buddies.

  • Really

    Kid never saw what was coming…hit him before he turned, on rt side…bastard.

    • David Phillips

      The sight of the kid triggered a flashback and he thought he was in Iraq murdering women and children all over again.

      • Norman Dostal

        very funny, imbeciles-the cop did his job

        • Neverfox

          Yes, he did. That’s the problem.

  • Really

    Funny they always how the toy gun in a darkness photo…this happened at 3:14 pm on a sunny nice Fall day…

  • Fuller Malarkey

    Chris Dorner, where are you when we need you?

  • CONNLEO

    This is a terrible tragedy but the Deputy was completely justified in using deadly force if the facts are as reported. The parents should be wondering why they let their child carry an air rifle and gun that looks exactly like real guns. The FBI will perform an investigation because of political pressure and find the same.

    • David Phillips

      If the boy found a real AK lying on the road and picked up so he could go turn it into the Police, I assume you would fully support Police approaching him from behind, yelling in his direction, and then shooting him for turning around. What a waste of space you are.

      • CONNLEO

        Change the facts and you change the outcome. That isn’t what happened here. Police got called to a suspicious person. That person leveled an authentic looking AK at them. Police are justifying in using deadly force. I don’t make up what force an LEO can use, our court system does. You may insult, as ignorant people like you in denial do. You will see that I am right when the investigation is over.

        • Cromwell

          Please try to understand, IT WASN’T A GUN IT WAS A TOY.
          But you cops keep going, blame the kid, his parents, of course Eric Holder and The President, all liberals, anyone who doesn’t agree with you and oh lets say Druids. Just don’t blame the guy that pulled the trigger, when it’s a cop.

          • CONNLEO

            The fact that it was later determined to be a toy is irrelevant. It is what the LEO perceived at the time which was that an AK was about to be used against him.

          • Foxhunter

            gutless

          • CONNLEO

            Worthless

          • Norman Dostal

            it was actually a pellet gun, which isnt a toy-now youre just making shiit up

          • CONNLEO

            How can you blame anyone at this point? Oh, because you hate all cops, I get it. In that case, you make complete sense.

        • Neverfox

          There’s a difference between thought experiments and changing facts, and you seem to be the one engaging in the latter. By no one’s account that I’ve seen did Lopez “level” an AK. There was at most talk of the barrel rising some during his turn (something that is nearly impossible to avoid, I might add, but I digress).

          But the facts also state that “the deputies pulled up behind Lopez, called for backup, took cover behind their open car doors, and warned him twice to drop his gun.” They created the “kill zone” and the “nanosecond”-based rules of engagement in response to an activity that, real gun or not, is not an act of aggression. If anyone would have been justified in using deadly force on someone who had leveled a gun at them, it would have been Lopez, in pure self-defense.

          • CONNLEO

            Incorrect, again ignorance in law enforcement use if force continuum. Whether leveling or turning with a firearm is enough to justify the use of deadly force. If the officers said to not move and drop your weapon, which I believe they did, and he did not, but instead turned toward the officers then deadly force is justified. Also, the deputies knew that their car is not cover (concealment) nor is their vests from an AK. These are things you don’t know, again judgement based on ignorance. These things make a difference.

          • CONNLEO

            Also, remember, warnings are not required if you perceive your life is at risk and there is no time to give one.

          • Foxhunter

            guttless

          • Neverfox

            Their life was only at risk because they initiated aggression against this kid. If someone comes up to you and sticks a gun in your face, they might well perceive that their life is at risk as you reach for your CCW, but that doesn’t justify them shooting you.

          • Foxhunter

            gutless

          • Neverfox

            You’ve really missed the point. My point is that telling someone not to move and drop their weapon does not magically make you not the one initiating aggression. That depends on what the person you’re telling this to was doing at the time. Use of deadly force is only justified as a response to aggression (and I’m speaking morally here, not about law enforcement policy or state laws, which can be and often are unjust).

            I didn’t mention the stuff about the barrel to say that they needed more of a reason before they’d be justified in shooting him; I pointed it out to draw attention to the facts you changed after chiding someone else for it. That doesn’t mean I think those facts, either way, are relevant to any possible justification; there is no justification for what they did. If he had a real AK and proceeded to shoot at the deputies, he would have been morally justified in doing so because he had just been threatened by two men with firearms, yelling at him and threatening to shoot him if he didn’t drop the object that he was peacefully holding. They initiated aggression against him and he had every right to defend himself.

        • Foxhunter

          He “leveled” the gun at them? How do you know this without doubt? Do tell. This to me is a major cruxt to the whole case. Was the gun draped on his shoulder, was he holding it with one hand or did he have it leveled at them? Cops are so gutless now days. They are trained to assume the worst case scenario no matter how unlikely it is in order to protect their own hide first and formost. This is why firemen are considered heroes and more and more often cops are despised by the general public.

          • CONNLEO

            The officers account is that he turned towards them with an AK-47. You have no idea how Law Enforcement are trained and your gutless comment is a cowardly, ignorant statement. Your hate for the police is evident and shows.

          • Cromwell

            You didn’t answer his question! Plus we have recently been shown in other OIS that “the officers account” isn’t always true.

          • CONNLEO

            That’s why there is an investigation! You are INNOCENT until proven guilty. You need to PROVE guilt, the burden is on the state.

          • Cromwell

            Yes you are supposed to be be innocent until proven guilty, unless the judge is a trigger happy gun nut who thinks he is still overseas. You are right that the burden is on the state to prove guilt, which they seem to do quite well except when “investigating” or in the very rare case prosecuting someone who works for the state. By the way you really need to control your anger better. Your comments are rife with personal attacks and insults. Either go slap off an an angry one or have some apple juice and a nap. You’re very cranky.

          • CONNLEO

            Not insults, the truth, which hurts you I guess. If you don’t like our justice system then you should leave the country and go to China or Russia. Let me know how that goes for you. Your comments again show more examples of your ignorance and unsubstantiated, biased opinions. He has been a Deputy for 24 years so only now you say he is a trigger happy, gun nut? If you had knowledge of this before what did you do about it? Just because one likes to shoot guns and possess guns certainly doesn’t mean they are nuts. In Commiefornia that is what you are brainwashed to believe I’m sure.

          • Cromwell

            That’s your answer, I’m laughing my ass off! Thank you. Now go to your kitchen and find all foods stuffed with cheese and deep fried, crawl onto the Barcalounger and settle in for a full day of FOX News. Your thought process must be saved and studied!!

          • CONNLEO

            Ignorance is bliss. You are a perfect example.

          • Neverfox

            “If you don’t like our justice system then you should leave the country and go to China or Russia.”

            That, of course, begs the question because it presupposes the legitimacy of the so-called “justice system” and its actions.

          • Foxhunter

            You are a fool. I don’t hate the police. I am sure there are good police officers everywhere who cringe when they see a story like this one and who wait until the investigation is over before jumping to conclusions like you have. Just as there are good and bad people there are good and bad cops.

          • CONNLEO

            And you are ignorant. I have never jumped to any conclusion. I know it’s hard for you to follow. I stated that if the facts are as reported. Which is that he turned towards the Officers with the AK then they are justified in using deadly force. If the investigation shows otherwise then they dhould be held accountable. I have said this all along but all you can do us insult and give nothing of substance to this conversation.

          • Foxhunter

            Your objectivity is transparently false. You may have stated that but then you turn around in the next sentence and show that you buy the cops’ story hook line and sinker. To protect and to serve. That is what cops are supposed to do. If you don’t see examples of police failure to do this on a regular basis in the news then you should open your eyes. Cops are trained to come home from work alive, at any cost, even at the cost of shooting a 14 year old kid carrying a bb gun.

          • CONNLEO

            Incorrect, police are taught to legally defend themselves. Open your eyes, Law Enforcement is deadly work. Children can kill people just as easily as anyone else and do. You speak of how police are trained. What police academy have you attended? How long have you been in Law Enforcement? None. This is why your comments are ignorant. Everyone knows a cops job. Based on the facts reported I do believe the officer because I know he was legally justified. However, that doesn’t mean an investigation is not warranted. An Officer only knows the facts at hand at the time deadly force is applied. A young man with an AK and a pistol who turned in their direction causing them to fear for their lives.

          • Foxhunter

            Not incorrect. The training is designed so that the cops come home at night. No shit it is deadly work. But, take for
            example John T Williams, a fifty year old blind nearly deaf wood carver
            carrying a small unopened knife who was shot multiple times and killed by a cop in Seattle a couple years ago. The cop was not charged with anything
            so apparently he had been trained and was within his right to shoot the
            old wood carver. The carver could not hear/understand the cops
            order to drop the knife. He was across the street, not moving toward the cop. The knife was not open. Apparently the cop was fearing for his life. Gutless. The cop was probably thinking of the training he got that showed how a person on speed can cover 20 feet in 3 seconds despite being shot multiple times and stab the cop. At what point does it become absurd to you?

          • Neverfox

            If you’re the first party to point a gun at someone who wasn’t doing anything but carrying a gun, you’re not defending yourself; you’re the aggressor. I don’t give a good God damn that it’s not legal to carry the gun. He was essentially being mugged by these deputies. Turning to face your mugger, armed or not, doesn’t justify anything for them.

            Any investigation that presumes that the deputies were justified in initiating the way they did is already an unjust investigation. It presupposes the justice of the law that gives them the authority to stop a peaceful person with guns aimed and presupposes that there is some set of facts that might make that okay.

          • Fuller Malarkey

            Police lie. This one in particular has been working on an alibi for years.

          • CONNLEO

            Reported from NBC, “his back to the deputies — begin to turn toward him, the barrel of the BB gun rising”

            “At least one witness, Ismael Mondragon, told NBC Bay Area that he had seen Andy with the gun, and told him to put it down because police were behind him.”

            “In 2004, the Press Democrat wrote Gelhaus was awarded the office’s Medal of Valor for pulling occupants of a burning vehicle to safety.”

          • Foxhunter

            Cops have a hard job. No doubt about it. Even with what you have told me, I am not totally convinced they were not too fast on the draw (did he have both hands on the weapon?) but it certainly is beginning to appear that they thought they had no choice. Guns, even bb guns, are nothing to be trifled with.

          • CONNLEO

            Yes, we do and this is EVERY cops worst nightmare scenario. Recently, here, an 18 year old had just robbed a store, he had pulled a pistol and pointed it at the clerk. He was stopped a short distance away with 2 authentic looking Colt .45 pistols. They even had a hammer that was locked back. The pistols were BB guns. The same situation could have easily transpired but thank god he threw his hands in the air and went to the ground. I know the training, I know the deputy was a 24 year veteran with firearms instructor training. I know if that kid turned towards them with an AK the deputy was justified. With all that being said an investigation should and will be performed. If the investigation shows otherwise then the deputy should be held accountable.

      • Norman Dostal

        sorry, dummy, the kid caused his own death-in fact, he had TWO guns-bad parenting

    • Fuller Malarkey

      No. We don’t shoot down children for possessing things cops don’t like.

    • Fuller Malarkey

      Cops will investigate cops and report nothing wrong, move along. Not quite objective now, is it?

      Citizen review with citizen remedy is the only way we’ll regain control of our out of control police.

  • JB fairness

    Just relieved and happy that THE TRUTH is finally coming out. Several witnesses all are consistent with each other, but the cop’s version of the story contradict that. Plus, a witness has come foreward saying most of the shots that hit Andy were fired while he was already laying on the ground either already dead or near dead. If he was already on the ground based on the witness account, and they continued firing multiple rounds at the kid, then sounds like to me voluntary man slaughter in the first degree. Now that is only if the witnesses story is true on this detail. Furthermore, if all is settled and satisfied that it actually happened that way by all concerned, but no charges are brought up on the officer, this will prove a failed justice system with no credibility and unreliable.
    Rest In Peace Andy Lopez.

    • CONNLEO

      You have no idea what you’re talking about. When a person is shot they can have several minutes before they die. This isn’t the movies where you get shot once and fall over dead. When a LEO needs to shoot, they shoot until the threat is eliminated, 7 shots or 17.

      • Cromwell

        And what threat would that be EXACTLY?

        • CONNLEO

          Well, when you’re put in that position where you perceive your life is at risk then you’ll know. Otherwise, don’t judge.

          • Cromwell

            Right we members of the public should just shut our holes and let you LEOs continue to do whatever the hell you want. No rules no oversight no regulation and just continue to “investigate” yourselves. You people could teach the Catholic Church a thing or two about lying and cover ups.

          • CONNLEO

            Ah, your true feelings are shown. All cops are corrupt and liers. When your opinion is ignorant and biased then yes. Otherwise wait for the justice system to run it’s course. If the Deputy was wrong in his actions then he should be held accountable. I’m sure you are without sin. People in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

          • Cromwell

            Not all cops are corrupt and liars, just most of them. I have enough sin for many but have never killed anyone. I hope you are being honest when you say he should be held accountable because most of the pro cop comments I have read are already calling it a good shoot and blaming everyone but the person who pulled the trigger. Most comments don’t even think this should be investigated. Please do read up a little on this, he is not the kind I would want patrolling my neighbourhood.

          • CONNLEO

            The fact that you state most cops are liars is baseless, ignorant, and biased in of itself. The fact that you or other people don’t like the way he polices has no bearing in this use of force incident. The fact that he is a 24 year veteran police officer and police trainer does have bearing in this incident. There should be an investigation and there always is. You might not have had to defend your or another’s life by using deadly force and you better pray you never have to. If you do, you should not be judged or threatened by ignorant and biased people before an investigation is done. In this country one is innocent until proven guilty. Again, if the Officer is wrong then he should be held accountable but if he isn’t wrong and he is justified then you have to accept that decision as well. You can’t have it both ways.

          • JB fairness

            …well, i am not going to stoop to your ranting about who’ s right or wrong, because I know Its a fact though, the vast majority opinion usually is right even if the legislation is lenient to protect their own. Those who commit crimes on humanity may escape justice, but will have to answer to God later, then finally Satan will deal him for his sins. You said “one is innocent until proven guilty” , well according to your definition that implies that the cost of taking a life of another, means more training for Leos in assessing an “in fear for my life situation”, instead of a punishment to fit the crime–Thus a double standard. For Andy and millions of others innocent citizens as victims to police brutality cases, who are either beaten, tortured, or killed by Leos. So, in your definition, Andy Lopez is guilty until proven innocent by the Leo’s “split second decision” to choose to end his life in his tracks. Further, the “split second decision” and in “fear for their life” decision to engage, has allowed too many Leos to use those two excuses so often that runs rampant over situations where it was clear the citizen was little to no threat by the general behavior of the citizen. It appears, I think most of the general media public will agree that, there were other ulterior motives behind taking Andy’s life.

            .

          • Norman Dostal

            millions? you sound moronic-no breeding please

          • Foxhunter

            It could theoretically be millions if the time frame is long enough so shut your arrogant pie hole.

          • JB fairness

            Thanks….. the number also includes incidents of citizens too scared to report and some not even documented by the depts. Thus appears lower than really is. But thanks Foxhunter for vouching for me. :)

          • JB fairness

            desist from the personal attacks. “moronic”
            Millions is an accurate number. They don’t include some of the beatings and killings by LEos because the the courts and police depts clear them to protect their own, and call the killings and beatings justified. What lie, that by definition they are all lies and corruptions. You are part of the problem and not the solution, so stop trolling. And you’re the one thats breeding trollism.

          • Fuller Malarkey

            In spite of what you say, this thug killed a 13 year old boy. Nothing you can say will justify that.

          • Norman Dostal

            your ea cirminal, huh? hate “dem coppers”

          • Cromwell

            No you pillock, I’m not a criminal(Do get some sort of spell check or don’t post after you’ve been drinking). I am a semi retired succesful tax paying citizen who is tired of the trigger happy louts that pass themselves off as policemen. As far as hating them, not yet but I’m getting real close.

          • Fuller Malarkey

            All cops are corrupt and liers

      • Cromwell

        So you’re saying the most important thing was to kill him not to subdue the threat. I relly liked how they handcuffed him after he was dead. Cowards!

    • Norman Dostal

      lies-the shots were fired in an instant and the kid went down-no one is saying he was shot on the ground

  • http://www.airsplat.com/ AirSplat

    As one of the largest airsoft retailers, Airsplat.com has started a fund raiser for Anthony Lopez and to bring awareness to proper gun safety and handling.

    You can read all the details here: http://blog.airsplat.com/2013/10/andy-lopez-fundraiser-airsplat-killed-police-carrying-airsoft-gun.html

  • shaerry

    I knew before they released the name it was Eric.He was always the kid that was bullied in school. I knew he would be a bad chioce for the department when he got his badge in the 90′s. I was amazed that he passed the background.

    • lovemydoggies

      Interesting comment, as I was bullied in high school over 30 years ago. Affected me terribly, even to this day. I remember those kids having guns and waving them around as well. Could have been real for all I know…One is still in jail for murder, serving a 40 year sentence for kidnapping/rape/murder. Must be something wrong with anyone that plays with guns, IMO. Even though I am not a fan of most cops, maybe this particular one did society a favor….

  • jdg

    Erick Gelhaus belongs in prison for murder.

    • Norman Dostal

      very funny-he did his job

      • Neverfox

        Because no one ever had a job that involved murdering people?

  • Norman Dostal

    the kid clearly caused his own detah-what are people protetsing?

    • Foxhunter

      The investigation is not over, you don’t know all of the facts so shut your stupid mouth.

  • ondr4ch

    With all that recent shootings in schools etc… you have to be brainless to walk around with AK47 replica… Cop did his job!

    • Neverfox

      You do know that “did his job” isn’t a reason, right? That’s it’s possible that there are unjust laws and unjust police procedures and polices, right? Right?

  • JB fairness

    source: “Opposing Views” news source
    A witness has come forward and said he saw the deputy fire multiple shots at Andy Lopez, while his body was already laying horrizontally on the ground. If this is true then this deputy should be charged as crime of voluntary manslaughter. There are many witnesses accounts are different than the deputies version. Debates can go on and on. But nowadays Leos are trained to obliterate the subject and if the threat is low,(like reaching for his cell phone, wallet, or even holding a baby wrapped in a blanket), the Leos will claim the citizen was reaching for a weapon. This has to stop. Too many citizens lives families,( especially in the minority groups, because this and many other latin and asian americans, is looking like its racially motivated) are being torn apart because of rogue, filthy, corruption in the police departments

  • Guest

    what happened to Andy Lopez is an injustice. imagine all the others this guy killed while in a war zone.

    the broader issues here are 1) militarization of the police 2) the “fear for my life” canard that police/military use constantly to justify any and all use of force, regardless of merit or fact 3) California’s bizarre relationship with guns, both the fetishization of them (an AK bb gun with the orange tip removed? BAD IDEA) and pearl-clutching fear of them.

  • seriously

    Can people stop arguing and realize that a thirteen year old boy was shot and killed? He was THIRTEEN. Kids make mistakes, but unfortunately this one cost him his life. Stop arguing about whose fault it was and realize that this is a tragedy regardless of who should have done what. You do not know the kid, you do not know the officer, and therefore cannot judge the character of either. No one should be able to argue against the fact that this is horrible.

    You people disgust me with your arguments.

  • xkn

    From all accounts this kid was shot from the close range, close enough to recognize the rifle. Rifle did not have an orange mark on the muzzle since its barrel was apparently broken off right at the gasport block. You cannot brake off the barrel of the real AK47.
    Some criminals do shorten their rifles by sawing them off, but on an fixed-stock AK, one would first remove the stock, and would hardly think about sawing off the barrel for two reasons: front sight, and thus capability of aiming with any precision is gone, and second, it is likely that such rifle will cease to cycle, thus rendering it a bolt-action rifle. If the officer is an expert on firearms these facts should have been obvious. Rifle with broken barrel, real or toy cannot have anything painted at the muzzle.
    According to some accounts, firing started almost immediately after first warning was issued. If you are not doing anything illegal would you not first turn and see who is shouting? After the kid was pumped with 7-8 rounds they allegedly handcuffed him and let him bleed to death. At this moment it was patently obvious that mistake was done,

    (you cannot mistake real toy gun for a real from 3ft. away even if you are not and expert) and obviously no attempt was made to rectify it. It is clear that both officers wanted one witness less.
    Furthermore, spin continued when sheriffs office announced that kid also had a plastic toy gun at his waist. This bears absolutely no relation to this case , as handgun was invisible, but it makes victim look worse. To further the spin, officers apparently were not placed on a routine paid leave, a norm when fatal shootings involving police happen. Apparently, the aura of absolute “normalcy” where there is no chance that officers have done anything wrong was maintained for the sole purpose of deceiving the public. It is obvious that there was a trigger-happy pathological murderer among the Sherif’s deputies. He commited first degree murder with special circumstances.
    His helper is a co-conspirator and should be dealt according to the law. Sheriff himself should resign for deceiving the public and standing with a pathological murderer.

  • chaos1

    I don’t seem to remember him being bullied in school. Since I was there from grade school through high school, and have kept in touch through out the years on and off.
    Its horrible what happened, but since I was not there I cannot make any judgements on him or the teenager. There are too many armchair quarterbacks making assumptions on both ends of the spectrum that have no idea what went on.