You may recall that BART policeman Johannes Mehserle shot Oscar Grant III to death when he mistook his gun for a TASER. Mehserle went down for that one, a killing caught on tape by multiple witnesses. The incident sparked claims of police brutality and triggered riots. This time, a police body-cam shows 73-year-old Tulsa, Oklahoma reserve deputy Robert Bates shooting and killing alleged gun dealer Eric Harris as he was fleeing arrest. Once again . . .
a police officer claims he accidentally pulled his gun instead of his TASER. “I shot him, I’m sorry,” Officer Bates says on the body-cam video. “He shot me!” Harris yelled. “He shot me, man. Oh, my god. I’m losing my breath.”
A responding officer’s reply will do nothing to assuage the community. “Fuck your breath,” on officer replies. “You shouldn’t have fucking ran!” another announces.
In the Mehserle case we [eventually] learned that officer training was insufficient. The BART cop received just six hours of training with his X26 ECD TASER. I assume we’ll find out something similar in this case, although that fact will be buried by the mainstream media.
For its part, Tulsa police point out that Harris had a previous arrest for assaulting a police officer. They say the felon was a risk and labelled his shooting an “accident.” “He made an inadvertent mistake,” Sheriff’s Captain Billy McKelvey pronounced. As of this writing no criminal charges have been filed against the septuagenarian officer. That may change . . .