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Author Topic: Man Police Shot was lawfully killed  (Read 1229 times)

Bri Thai

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Man Police Shot was lawfully killed
« on: February 03, 2006, 11:21:38 AM »

Heres another from the UK -


Man police shot 'lawfully killed' 
Officers who shot dead a man brandishing a gun-shaped lighter acted lawfully, the High Court has ruled.
Derek Bennett, 29, was hit four times by two marksmen in Brixton, south London, on 16 July 2001. The officers said they thought the gun was real.

Mr Bennett's relatives reacted angrily as a judge upheld an inquest jury's verdict that police acted lawfully.

The family of the dead man said the original decision made in December 2004 was fatally flawed.

Mr Bennett's mother rose to her feet and cried: "They murdered him. They murdered him. They murdered my son."

Another relative cried out: "How many times do they have to shoot a man before they consider him harmless?"

Mr Bennett died when armed officers opened fire as he grabbed John Knightly, 53, and held the "weapon" to his head.

The inquest heard Mr Knightly wriggled free, at which point Mr Bennett turned the novelty lighter on police and tried to take cover behind a pillar as they fired six shots at him.

"The jury decided on the evidence that was before them that this was a lawful killing" - Mr Justice Collins

The family's lawyer Michael Mansfield, QC, told the hearing that the Southwark coroner was anxious to protect the police from an improper verdict against them and so effectively "became the jury".

As a result, the 11 jurors had no alternative but to return a verdict clearing the police, he told Mr Justice Collins.

But Judge Collins rejected the argument, saying the jury had been correctly directed that lethal force could be used where it was reasonable, having regard to all the circumstances.

"The jury decided on the evidence that was before them that this was a lawful killing," he added.

After the judgment, Mr Bennett's brother Daniel said the decision was "disappointing... but expected" and the family would take the case to the Court of Appeal.


Although tragic, this bit got my attention -

"Another relative cried out: "How many times do they have to shoot a man before they consider him harmless?"

Answer - till he's dead.



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Re: Man Police Shot was lawfully killed
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2006, 12:32:29 PM »

"How many times do they have to shoot a man before they consider him harmless?"

Until he stops moving.

I have always been amazed at people who question the number of wounds leading to death.  If two shots were lethal and you put two extra in the person, does that make him more dead?  If your beloved husband  invaded my home and tried to rape my wife was only shot twice, would you miss him less than if I just emptied the clip for an even dozen?  Since I have both a pistol and a shot gun, perhaps they would like to specify the least offensive way of turning an assailant into hamburger.  Would they get more or less offended depending on the number of pellets in the shell?  Is 8 pellet 00 buck less offensive than 35 pellet #4 coyote shot?  Would four rounds of 00 buck be less offensive than one round of coyote shot?  Or does offense go inversely with number of pellets, perhaps by the mass of each pellet?

Another point:  Perhaps the person thinks that the police could have merely wounded the fellow.  Assuming this is even possible from a marksmanship point of view, I would consider a person with a firearm more dangerous wounded than he was healthy.  A slightly wounded person will be totally freaked out and way more likely to panic.  Not able to even run away, the person would be more likely to empty his clip at others.
"Do not imitate the ancient masters.  Seek what they sought!"