Cop Doesn’t Shoot Violent Attacker With 51 Previous Arrests

Joshua Suarez (courtesy police.hartford.gov)

“A 28-year old East Hartford man with 51 previous arrests and more than a dozen convictions [and wanted for a homicide in 2006] was charged Thursday night with assaulting two police officers following a car accident,” courant.com reports. Specifically, 28-year-old Joshua Suarez’s charges include assault on a police officer, possession of narcotics, engaging police in pursuit, driving under license suspension, driving an unregistered car, reckless driving, evading responsibility and driving without insurance. The judge in the case praised  Sgt. Jeff Morrison for not shooting Suarez, and for good reason . . .

According to police reports, Sgt. Jeff Morrison approached Suarez with his gun drawn and repeatedly ordered him to show his hands and get on the ground. Instead, according to the report, Suarez from a low football crouch charged Morrison, wrapped his arms around Morrison’s waist and pushed him back.

Morrison said he smashed Suarez in the left side of his face with his handgun in an attempt to end the attack. Although he was still falling backward, Morrison wrote that he was able to deflect Suarez to his left. Morrison then jumped on top of him to control him.

Suarez did not giving up and was grabbing at Morrison’s throat and uniform shirt. Morrison wrote that he was only able to break away from Suarez when his shirt tore. He used his gun “as an emergency impact weapon and struck the accused in the left side of the head again.”

More officers then arrived and were able to get control of Suarez.

TTAG tipster 1961bil has this to say about that:

The cop appears to have been justified to used his weapon yet he did not. Are cops reluctant to use deadly force in light of what is going on in the US? The incident also sheds light on the joke called the Connecticut Judicial system. 51 arrests. On parole. These are the so-called non violent offenders that Malloy has ordered released from prison seems to be working well.

comments

  1. avatar Ralph says:

    Poor Mr. Suarez was just turning his life around — for the 52nd time.

    1. avatar Geoff PR says:

      His mother reportedly said –

      “My boy… He really a good boy…”

      (Read that with a Jewish grandmother voice…)

      With any luck, Joshua Suarez will pull a stunt like that on a POTG and permanently stop that arrest streak at 52.)

    2. avatar AllAmerican says:

      This is the liberal justice system for you.

      1. avatar Mark N. says:

        It has little to do with politics, liberal or conservative, but a lot to do with overcrowded prisons and taxpayers unwilling to fund a “concrete” solution. Thus, non and less violent offenders are being released on parole or probation. In California, the Fed ordered the State to release 35,000 prisoners because of massive overcrowding, and to spend billions improving a horrendous medical system leading to deaths and abuses of mentally ill offenders. As you probably know, many state funded mental institutions nationwide were shut down due to a lack of funding–and the prison system suddenly had to take up the slack, a problem with which it was ill-equipped to deal. That leaves a lot less room for these repeat offenders who have only avoided a permanent residence by the good fortune of not having killed anybody (yet).

        1. avatar Dry Sider says:

          “…unwilling to fund a “concrete” solution.”

          How about a ballistic solution? 51 arrests on various and sundry crimes pretty much shows a complete lack of regard for society. Pop a cap, or drop him and folks like him on an island somewhere. Maybe someday it will be another Australia.

          Yeah, I know. Slippery slope.

        2. avatar Aaron says:

          so what. put them in dog kennels stacked on top of each other; they don’t take up much space. Or reduce all cells to 5′ x 10′ solitary confinement and never let them out for yard exercise; can stack a lot more cons per guard.

  2. avatar Jay-El says:

    Quick — everyone to the streets to thank the police! And instead of burning this beeyatch down, let’s pick up trash and paint over graffiti!

  3. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

    What a judicial system they have there.

    1. avatar Accur81 says:

      The “justice” system runs that way in blue cities and states.

  4. avatar Jay-El says:

    Also, Shannon Watts and the Brady Campaign will log Mr. Suarez as a victim of gun violence, with a firearms related injury.

    1. avatar Drew says:

      That’s two (2) injuries for two (2) sepperate counts of gun violence.

  5. avatar DickDanger says:

    52 arrests AND wanted for homicide? And still walking the streets? Wow, the system really does work /sarc off/

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      The system works exactly the way the state and its governor wants it to work.

      1. avatar Resident CT says:

        The basic attitude of the CT Undersecretary for Criminal Justice Mike Lawlor is that since violent crime is going down, that it is ok to have early release of violent criminals. This doesn’t apply to Joshua Suarez since he really didn’t stay in jail long enough to qualify. /sarc

        http://www.savagewatch.com/earlyrelease.html

        http://connecticutpoliticalreporter.blogspot.com/2013/03/a-citizens-case-against-malloy-lawlor.html

        1. avatar Marcus says:

          You hit the nail on the head with Lawlor.

          We don’t happen to know one another, do we? Are you going to college in a “free” state, and would you know what to respond with if I were to say your name, in a gruff voice, followed by “Son…”?

          Just a wild-assed guess. Pardon me if I am totally off.

    2. avatar LarryinTX says:

      I’d love clarification. Were all 51 arrests prior to 2006, or has he been repeatedly arrested and released while he was wanted for murder, just nobody noticed?

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        IDK, but I do know that Suarez was out on parole when this unfortunate event occurred.

  6. avatar PeterC says:

    Sgt. Morrison obviously misinterpreted the rules. Suarez is not black, and is therefore eminently shootable.

  7. avatar Resident CT says:

    Connecticut has a “catch and release” program, Suarez isn’t the only real criminal in CT that has “benefited” from the CT judicial system. I think it is the same Joshua Suarez, but he has killed before. The “full story” is gone down the memory hole. The most interesting part is the comments about the younger Suarez of 6 years ago.

    “HARTFORD: Man Acquitted In Stabbing Death
    Full story: Hartford Courant 15
    The verdict came after a three-day trial in which a lawyer for Joshua Suarez, 22, argued that the killing was in self-defense. Suarez’s lawyer, Walter Hussey of Hartford, said no one witnessed the stabbing and … Full Story ”

    http://www.topix.com/forum/city/hartford-ct/TN1AAPGMG46UB4AAS

    1. avatar Lexie says:

      That is all B.S when it comes to the HOMICIDE … It wasn’t self defense ! My dad was protecting himself and this psychotic bastard killed him on top of that there was a witness but that bitch is to scared to speak of anything … How will they believe his word ? He has done so many things and is still free like are you serious ? I’ll just leave it in gods hands I know he’ll ROT IN HELL … Son of a BITCH left me me fatherless since the age of 10 and 9 years later still nothing done about this ? This system is corrupted he needs to be in for life . left me and my sisters fatherless and if he was alive he would have met his only grandaughter and he would have been here to see me graduate .. This pain will never go away !!! Justice will be served soon.

  8. avatar AnonInWA says:

    This type of justice makes background check mandatory. Instead of focusing on criminals and keeping them in jail, the system tries to restrict free people that did nothing wrong.
    This is how we should call out the gun grabbers.
    Just say NO to background checks.

  9. avatar ST says:

    The fact that the judge praised the cop for NOT shooting a 51 time minority arrestee says all one needs to know about the priorities of the Connecticut Judicial System.

    Yes, the officer was quite smart about beating the offender with his gun versus shooting him.Clearly his boss’ priorities aren aligned with keeping bad guys off the street. Pretty soon, well be like Germany where an inquiry is convened any time officers aim for the head in a UOF shooting.

  10. avatar Josh says:

    I could kind of see 51 arrests for someone who lived a full, long lifetime of crime or vagrancy, but he’s 28. Why isn’t he doing hard time already? I guess they need to make room in their prisons for all the guys who forgot to register their 15 round pistol mags. It’s those objects sitting in people’s safes that are a threat to the children, not 28 year olds with 51 arrests, right?

    1. avatar Alexander says:

      Why, they had to release him so he could vote.

      1. avatar Accur81 says:

        Which he can do multiple times if there isn’t voter ID.

        1. avatar Art says:

          ironically CT is a voter ID state
          the problem is you only need the ID, losing the right there requires an act of god

          scary part is my divorce and child support are there, I get threatened with more time if I am LATE on a payment(they are automatic from my paycheck) then he got for his arrests

    2. avatar Rick says:

      51 arrests? Maybe he’s one of “The Usual Suspects.”

  11. avatar Scrubula says:

    These are the people breaking into houses and murdering people for the 50 dollars in their wallet.

    Catch and release, catch and release. I’m sorry but the cop would have done society better by shooting him.

    1. avatar Gene says:

      Consider how the DOJ under Holder has been acting. Most likely ther’d be some sort of civil rights violation accusation.

  12. avatar jwm says:

    Do not mistake this as any kind of support for Suarez. It ain’t. But if you have an arrest, regardless of how many or few, that doesn’t result in a conviction should it be a part of your life long record? Convictions, yes. But an arrest with no other outcome than being arrested?

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Well, he did have more than a dozen convictions, but otherwise I would say no, because I live in TX. Looking at how this system works in CT, I’d have to think about it.

    2. avatar ropingdown says:

      Agree that the arrest record reporting is pathetic. In the bad old days (things are different now?) a local PD, perhaps with the encouragement of a local politician, could making harassing arrests, where the charges were going to fall away but the record would tag the unwanted person for life. It was (and is) rare that someone arrested due to so-called innocent mistake or error could effectively sue. The practice grew.

      On the other side of the coin for the locally favored and the wealthy even convictions had a way of disappearing. A felony would be reduced to a misdemeanor, the one misdemeanor would be expunged…and so on.

      Convictions should be the only stat permissible of public record once the charge upon arrest has been dropped and the arrested person has been released.

    3. avatar Geoff PR says:

      Arrest records (and usually mugshots) are public records, lots of newspapers print those, newspaper websites often have searchable databases.

      That’s how I found an old girlfriend. I Googled her name and she seems to be working on getting a lengthy rap sheet. 2 DUIs in 30 days (and one of those blew over 4 times the legal limit. 0.35 IIRC. I was amazed she wasn’t unconscious at that point)

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        Four times the legal limit? Wow. She seems like a very expensive date.

        1. avatar Geoff PR says:

          Not particularly. Unfortunately, alcohol revealed her core personality.

          That being simply an unpleasant person. She’s the one I got a face full of window pane glass from.

          And yeah, she was very, very nice in certain parts of the relationship. When you’re in your twenties the little head overrules the big head.

          And in your thirties. Some of the 40s as well…

          *sigh*

  13. avatar LC Judas says:

    I read the article title as “Cop doesn’t shoot suspect 51 times” and wondered why such a funny title. Then wished he had in fact shot the guy 51 times.

  14. avatar Grindstone says:

    “The incident also sheds light on the joke called the Connecticut Judicial system. 51 arrests. On parole. ”

    Minor note, arrest doesn’t equal conviction/guilt. But, the article does go on to say that he had dozens of convictions. But don’t assume that just because someone is arrested, they are guilty of the charge.

    Kudos to the officer for exercising restraint in a very dangerous situation. It is sad that we have to make note of when a cop *doesn’t* shoot somebody.

  15. avatar Former Water Walker says:

    Wow that’s a lot of arrests. Fear of rioting I guess…

  16. avatar DaveL says:

    I submit that he did use his weapon. He used it as a bludgeon, apparently to good effect. Good on him.

    1. avatar gemalo says:

      It’s highly likely that the officer had just come from qualifying and shot his gun 10 times; and was therefore out of ammo, per Conn. magazine capacity rules.

  17. avatar mdc says:

    Not a good sign on behalf of officer. Reason’s abound. Happen to know a officer who used pistol in a similar situation. After doing so, at end of shift he noticed his slide was off frame partially, rendering his pistol inoperable. Luckily, at end of shift. True incident. A Glock

    1. avatar jjimmyjonga says:

      all those Glock “torture tests” on UTube need to add the “smack the criminal on the head and fire 17 rounds” test.

    2. avatar Jon says:

      “slide was off frame partially”

      You mean off the grooves, or out-of-battery?
      Easy enough to fix out-of-battery with a quick tap.

    3. avatar OldWarHorse says:

      Interesting comment, mdc. Sergeant Morrison actually experienced essentially the same thing.

      He was carrying a G22 with a Surefire X300. After the second Austrian hammer strike, he was unable to reholster and handed it off to a fellow officer to finish restraining the illustrious Senor Suarez. Upon recovering his duty pistol, he discovered that the right side frame rail had separated from the slide thus locking the action and making it solely an impact weapon for the duration of the fight if it had continued.

      Not knowing whether it was the first or second strike that took her out of action, I imagine Sergeant Morrison will choose to deliver a .40 projectile instead of blunt force trauma if he ever faces the same circumstance. Your story plus his adds up to 3 or 4 I’ve heard all from LEOs striking aggressive suspects over the last 15 years. I’ve clubbed a pit bull, a dairy bull, and a 400lb Samoan with G19s and G23s without any adverse issue myself, but it just goes to reinforce that the pistol should be used as an impact weapon only as a last resort.

      1. avatar meadowsr says:

        Like in all those shows where the guy runs out of bullets, and then *throws* the gun at his opponent? 🙂

        1. avatar OldWarHorse says:

          Exactly, J.

          This incident had Officer Morrison missing his old S&W 4506, a big hunk of steel that is grossly superior to a Glock when used as a blunt force weapon or of you have to throw it at your opponent’s face.

          I’m just glad he found a way to win.

  18. avatar Nedd Ludd says:

    Thankfully for the citizens of Connecticut, the legislature passed CT’s draconian
    3̶,̶ ̶3̶0̶, 300 Strikes and You’re Out law.

    Including this most recent adventure, that means aspiring rap artist & slam poet,
    Mr Suarez, known, to his fans as Mocha Ice,has only 248 more chances to turn his life around before CT can lock him up for good.

    I’m sure the citizens of the Constitution State are breathing a sigh of relief knowing that.

  19. avatar Mack Bolan says:

    52 trips through the judicial system and subsequent incarceration = 1.4 million dollars

    A $0.56 round of 40 s&w to the face = Priceless

  20. avatar neiowa says:

    Further proof that there are POS just NEED killin.

  21. avatar Javier says:

    You would think that after say the 40th arrest they would start building a cell on top of him.

  22. avatar Jon says:

    Should have just shot him. The public is so pansy they care more about “Political Constipation” than the safety of the police and upholding the law. When someone’s doing their job: ” The police officer was white…. RACISM!” or “Look at what he did to that poor person, he didn’t need to use that much force!” I can’t stand these worthless pacifist shits. People like them should just huddle in the corner and let themselves get beaten to death by criminals as an example of what they would like us to do.

    1. avatar Roymond says:

      Fan of a police state, huh?

      According to recent research, at least 40% of federal convictions are of innocent people who take a deal. Why would someone who’s innocent take a deal? Because prosecutors throw every imaginable charge at anyone accused of anything.

      The stats are most likely similar in just about every state. The system is stacked in favor of those who make political or career points by using the law as a tool for persecution via prosecution.

      As Thomas Jefferson said, emphasizing a basic legal principle, better a thousand guilty walk free than one innocent be punished (the legal principle said a hundred guilty).

      1. avatar Jon says:

        Notice how none of what you said had anything to do with my post, and that just because I support some things cops do, doesn’t automatically make me a fan of a “police state” – that’s really primitive logic.

  23. avatar meadowsr says:

    “Are cops reluctant to use deadly force in light of what is going on in the US?”

    Quite possibly. And it’s probably going to result in the death of good cops just trying to do their job.

  24. avatar Mediocrates says:

    Nice work, officer! That’s the way things work now. Fill the jails with victimless non-violent felons and make deals with murderers and thieves so they can be released back onto society.

    But hey, it’s the gun’s fault.

  25. avatar Tominator says:

    Oh come on! 10’ooo protestors against police violence this weekend just can’t be wrong!…or can they?

  26. avatar Omer Baker says:

    I hope that’s an old mugshot, he doesn’t look like he was hit in the left side of his face twice with anything, let alone a gun.

  27. avatar Tommyr says:

    Great job Officer (sarcasm), we’ll be seeing this scumbag again very shortly. Our “justice” system is a total joke. 51 freaking times? FAILED SYSTEM.

  28. avatar stykusfykus says:

    I’m sure somebody said this already, but it’s only cuz he wasn’t black doncha know.

  29. avatar Kendahl says:

    My state (Nebraska) is pretty conservative. It’s highly unlikely that you will be charged for shooting a robber who invades your home or business. Lawsuits by the criminals or their families are unheard of because they can’t find a sympathetic jury. Despite that, there are major problems.

    The state prison system is overcrowded by 50%. To keep overcrowding from getting worse, there is a “good time” law under which a prisoner is given an extra day of credit against his sentence for every day he stays out of trouble. This effectively cuts sentences in half. Prisoners rarely lose their “good time” regardless of misbehavior. Despite clear instructions from the state supreme court, prison officials have for years miscalculated sentences to get prisoners, including violent ones, out on the street early. After the state’s biggest newspaper broke the story about the miscalculations, two top administrators, both lawyers, quickly retired to save their pensions. The head of the prison system initiated, wholly on his own, a furlough system not authorized under state law. The governor’s chief of staff informed members of the state parole board that they didn’t have to worry about paroling too many prisoners but might lose their jobs if they didn’t parole enough.

    The poster boy for the prison system’s problems is Nikko Jenkins. Jenkins has been in and out of prison, starting at age seven, for a various violent crimes. He committed additional violent crimes while in prison and spent much of his time in solitary confinement. Despite that record, he was paroled from a 10 year sentence for armed robbery and assault in the summer of 2013. Within a month, he committed four murders. The last of his victims was a young mother he car jacked on her way home from her late night job. He confessed to all four murders and has been convicted. However, no one knows where to put him. Some psychiatrists think he is insane while others think he is a clever faker. The county jail that held Jenkins during his trial hired a street wise psychiatrist with 20 years’ experience to evaluate him. The jail director fired the psychiatrist after he testified in court that Jenkins is bat shit crazy and too dangerious to ever be let loose. (That backfired. The county now owes the psychiatrist $125,000 for defaming his professional repuation.) The state’s hospital for the criminally insane doesn’t want Jenkins. They say their security isn’t strong enough to hold him.

  30. avatar J says:

    Good job Sgt. Morrison. Guessing he’s used to a little wrestling, grappling. Suarez won’t last long if he doesn’t change his ways.

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