As a Jew, I fully understand and support the right of Jewish people to defend themselves, both collectively and individually. Just as I fully understand and support the right of anyone to defend themselves. But this? This is stupid. “On Thursday night [members of Brooklyn South Shomrim Patrol] spotted [a known sex offender] driving up 46th Street in a silver Hyundai after residents called their hot line,” The New York Times reports. “Members of the patrol began following him in an unmarked car, and contacted Shomrim members in other vehicles to help box him in, said Sam Follman, a coordinator for the group.” What? What are they meshugenah? It gets worse . . .
“He noticed we were behind him, and he was scared,” Mr. Follman said. “He’s a known perp to us.” As the man drove along 46th street between Ninth and 10th Avenues, he had to stop behind a double-parked car on a one-way street.
“When he saw he was blocked, he got out and started running,” Mr. Follman said. After a brief chase, members of the patrol converged on him from several directions, tackled him and forced him to the ground. The man then pulled a .22-caliber gun and started firing, Mr. Follman said.
“Probably he got off five, six shots,” he said. “While he was on the floor, he kept shooting.”
Aside from the fact that two bakers, a dry cleaner and insurance salesman now have gunshot wounds (i.e. they’re lucky to be alive), their actions are sure to trigger a lawsuit for kidnapping, false imprisonment, denial of civil rights and God knows what else. The pervert will walk.
Did anyone ever explain the concept of “imminent threat” to this group? This action puts the Patrol’s survival in doubt. As it should. Despite the use of the word “perp,” the Patrol are civilians, not law enforcement officers. They are not directly accountable to the public for their actions, imbued with the authority to arrest, incarcerate and prosecute sex offenders or other criminals.
Whoever thought of this capture plan, participated in it or didn’t think to stop it, is a putz.