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  • UK firearms officers suspended

    BBC, News, BBC News, news online, world, uk, international, foreign, british, online, service


    In brief two armed Police Officers have been suspended following an inquiry into shooting a man they perceived to be a threat.

    I think the article shows what a massive cultural difference there is between the UK and US regarding this subject. The Police service regularly receives criticism from the media, but on the very rare occasions when Police actually have to use fatal action it is almost guaranteed. Even if the party is armed to the teeth questions are asked such as 'Why didn't they just shoot him in the leg?'

    I personally would hate to see this country have a gun culture like America's. I also think every single poster on the Firearms section of this board is a closet psycho, but there has got to be a middle ground.

  • #2
    Bobbycop, though I've posted in the Firearms section, I take exception of being classified as a "closet psycho." I carry a firearm on duty as a necessity. Our culture allows it's citizens the freedom to keep and bear arms, a freedom that came about as the result of our breaking free from England's tyrannical rule over it's perceived colonies. Our leaders made a conscious decsion to arm it's citizens so such tyranny couldn't occur again. Admittedly, there are too many firearms in the hands of too many people that shouldn't have them. That will never change. I live in an area where probably 90% of households have firearms, as most are hunters. There is very little crime.I wonder why?
    Extremism in the pursuit of liberty is no vice. Barry Goldwater

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    • #3
      Keith,You miss my point.
      I am all for the use of firearms where necessary and did not mean to offend.The psycho bit was tongue in cheek.
      What's important is that two Officers ,plainly doing their duty,are now suspended for an alleged 'illegal killing'.The male shot was supposedly non-compliant and looked to be armed.
      Now British Police Officers are asking why the hell would they want to specialise in firearms. No extra money, only normal paid overtime , and the worry that you are going to be accused of murder for trying to do your job. A very real worry.
      That is why dozens of firearms officers 'downed tools'.
      Off topic but this country is similarly anti-Police regarding vehicle pursuits.A kid crashing a car at 100mph is blamed on the poor Traffic cop behind him.

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      • #4
        Just about every time a cop shoots someone, people crawl out of the woodwork and from under the baseboards to question their actions. It's a shame that the people that second guess us, have never been in our shoes. I've been lucky, and have never had to shoot anyone. I've drawn my pistol on a few, but have never had to pull the trigger. I can understand why your officers wouldn't want the added responsibility of carrying firearms if they don't receive not only extra pay for the responsibility, but backing from the public and more importantly their superiors. I hope someone has the balls to stand-up for the officers.
        Extremism in the pursuit of liberty is no vice. Barry Goldwater

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        • #5
          I guess it

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          • #6
            I don't think we can compare both systems.
            In France we do wear guns and are used to it, I wouldn't work without. But I spent a month in July working with a British police force, and they are mainly against the idea of wearing a weapon ... And they actually work quite well without, the number of officers killed on duty is not very high ... Unfortunately it's something we can't do in our countries now, the US, France ...

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            • #7
              The best study I am aware of is in the book "The Samuri, the Mountie, and the Cowboy". The cultures of our countries are so different, it simply is not possible to compare the people of the UK to Austria, France, or the US. It's not just the laws, but the culture.
              As an example, the Brits in Canada negotiated with the Native Peoples, while, rightly or wrongly, in the US we took the land, usually by force. On the other hand, the Brits in Tasmaina killed off almost all the Native People on the island.

              Many departments in the US run "Citizen's Police Academys", where everyone is welcome. As part of many of these classes, real time simulations get the people, and the media, to better understand the dynamics of a confrontation. Many 'reporters' have "shot" innocents when it was their life on the line. This has reduced the ranting about officer involved shootings. This could be a tack for the armed officers to take with their critics in the press.
              "A man who has nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the existing of better men than himself."
              John Stuart Mill

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              • #8
                I like your "Citizen

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                • #9
                  Everything I have heard indicates that it has had a very positive effect, cutting down undeserved comments in the press. Some departments run special, short term classes (run by the public information officer) for the press only. Show them what a real investigation is like, take them for a spin on the driving track, how to raise fingerprints, booking procedures, a bit of shooting, and then some shoot/no-shoot decision making. After the 'news readers' (we call them "talking heads") shoot the wrong people a few times, their comments change direction. One TV station in San Diego ran a story about it, and just how difficult it is to make those decisions under stress.
                  "A man who has nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the existing of better men than himself."
                  John Stuart Mill

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                  • #10
                    Re: Re: UK firearms officers suspended

                    Originally posted by Marky Mark
                    [
                    Maybe you should shoot the media... [/B]
                    that has to be the most sensible thing any-one has said on these forums!!
                    Pain....nature's way of letting us know we're still alive!!!

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                    • #11
                      Hi guys Ihave been reading all your comments and I geuse none of you are actually wrong. Here in South Africa we have a really difficult time with the same problem. The press here bemoanthe fact that crime is to high and on the same page will rip a policeman apart for acting (even if he/she didn't use a fire arm even pepper spray is bad if used as the press say) Our problem is even bigger here as we have a vast arry of fire arms that come from wars threw out africa ending up in our country. Its quite common for officers on patrol to be fired on with RPG's or have hand grenades threwn at them not to mention being shot at with just about every type of assualt rifel known to man kind and some that arn't.
                      The point is that even though the threat here is very big that one can die in the line of duty, we still go out every day because its what we believe in. Its a calling to us and we go threw the same problems every day just the same as countries that have far less crime and violence. We never had a constitution as we do now and as hard as it is to work safely under it, (we arnt allowed to go near our guns during road blocks or vehicle stops) we still try our best.

                      To the guy in the UK just remember one thing we may be worlds apart but we do the same job and u are NOT alone in this. we are together in spirit. We here have a saying "AS LONG AS U KNOW YOU ACTED THE RIGHT WAY F%#*K THE PRESS.

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                      • #12
                        Show it not to have to use it

                        While I was still in France, I had to go on patrol carrying my side arm. The legislation regarding the use of weapons on duty in France is very complex. You can use it to defend yourself or someone else in imminent and life-threatening danger as long as the peril is of the same level (ie : lethal or insignificant weapon...) and your response immediate. You have as well the right to shoot a very dangerous offender(to stop and arrest him ) as long as you tell him to comply to your order. We also have two different situations which allow us to shoot at someone without normally being annoyed by any shenanigans from the justice dpt -- as long as in respect with the legislation, that is to say ! -- I didn't happen to be in a situation such as to have to pull the trigger and I hope I won't. The point is that it's very difficult to tell how we will react to the event. It depends on so many things, your health, temper, time of the day, etc... The same guy at the same hour the day after won't react alike. For sure, using your handgun is the last solution to the problem and that's why we have to be trained to. Practise, Practise and practise not to have to use it...
                        Operator! Give me the number for 911!
                        Homer Simpson

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                        • #13
                          Fredldg, other than the shooting at fleeing felons (limited to the US Marshals Service, as far as I know), the french policy sounds like most US laws.
                          In general, we are only authorized to shoot in defense of our, or someone ele's, life. There must be an immediate threat of death or serious bodily harm.

                          We train, train, train, and hope never to need our sidearms.
                          "A man who has nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free, unless made and kept so by the existing of better men than himself."
                          John Stuart Mill

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Sleuth
                            Fredldg, other than the shooting at fleeing felons (limited to the US Marshals Service, as far as I know
                            My PD's deadly force policy allows shooting fleeing felons if they have committed or have threatened to commit death or great bodily injury, and if you believe that they will do so again if their escape is not immediately terminated. In other words, if someone shoots at me and then runs away, they're fair game.

                            In almost every police use of deadly force I've seen, the people making the most noise are usually the suspect's family and friends. "He was turning his life around", "He just signed a contract for a rap album", etc.

                            The whole brouhaha soon blows over, and I can only think of one incident where a cop was actually prosecuted for using deadly force (he went to prison).
                            Talk sense to a fool, and he will call you foolish - Euripides

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                            • #15
                              [QUOTE]Originally posted by Delta784
                              In other words, if someone shoots at me and then runs away, they're fair game.

                              In this specific case, isn't it necessary for you to shoot at him in a very short period of time after his first attempt to kill you ? I mean, if for example you can't run after the guy to stop him with your handgun, will one of your colleague be allowed to shoot at the suspect two or three days after if they think they've just met the "good guy" (on the condition that he refuses to surrender) ?


                              Sorry to confess my ignorance on that topic. But is the legislation regarding the use of lethal weapons so different from state to state in the US ?
                              Sleuth was talking about the US Marshals Service. Don't you have all, as Police officer all around the USA, the same rights --talking about guns of course ! --
                              Operator! Give me the number for 911!
                              Homer Simpson

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