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  • Fort Worth PD Shooting

    FORT WORTH -- Police Chief Jeffrey Halstead asked for tough questions and got them Thursday night at a meeting in an east Fort Worth church organized in response to the recent fatal shooting of a black motorist by a police officer.
    Accompanied by members of his command staff, Halstead faced about 300 people at Holy Tabernacle Church of God in Christ, close to the site of the Feb. 28 shooting of Charal "RaRa" Thomas.
    "We want the hard questions," Halstead said. "We have respect for loss of life."
    He and others in the department "would love to take those three seconds back" that led to Thomas' death, he said.
    In a question-and-answer format, the chief responded to topics including the department's policy regarding shooting into a vehicle where children were riding and concerns about long-standing perceived abuse of blacks by police in east and southeast Fort Worth.
    Councilman Frank Moss said the three-hour forum was "a good venting session."
    "I think it went pretty well," Moss said. "It provided an opportunity for people to express some of their issues regarding the relationship between the community and the Police Department."
    Many of the questions involved police use of deadly force and the extent of training in that area.
    Halstead said that teaching an officer every situation he or she might face is impossible.
    Officers are trained to "use the minimal force reasonable," he said.
    A sore point with several speakers was that children were involved.
    Thomas, 32, was shot by officer J. Romer during a traffic stop. Three of Thomas' children were in the back seat.
    Thomas refused to get out of his SUV and locked the doors. When the officer reached through a partly open window to unlock the driver's door, Thomas rolled up his window, trapping the officer's arm, police have said. Thomas then drove forward, dragging Romer, who eventually got onto the SUV's running board, pulled his weapon and fired 12 shots at Thomas, police have said. An adult passenger was also in the SUV.
    Halstead said the department has no policy regarding firing a weapon in the presence of children and spoke of the problems such a policy would create.
    Someone could think they could "grab some children and hold them" to thwart law enforcement, he said.
    Instead, he said, officers train for "the safety of everyone."
    Terrence Swanson said he and others were working "diligently behind the scenes to open proper and clandestine investigations of the officers in this shooting."
    "We can no longer be simply passive about social injustices in our communities," he said.
    Another speaker asked Halstead whether he was "really conscious of the mindset of the black community."
    "We respect you," she said, referring to the Police Department. "But we don't like you."
    She asked whether he would be "open to a citizens review board."
    Halstead said that in January, before Thomas' death, he began talking within the department about a review board. He said he has called a meeting for May with his chief's advisory committee to discuss it.
    He said he welcomes input from "people who are critical of where we are today and have a vision of where we need to be."
    Calls for a civilian review board for Fort Worth police have arisen from time to time, particularly in the 1990s after shootings by police. Police officials, including former Chief Thomas Windham, opposed such boards, saying untrained residents would not be qualified to investigate complaints against professional police officers. And the Fort Worth City Council has never been receptive to the idea.
    Moss said Thursday that he thinks that Halstead needs to be commended for looking into additional ways of further opening communication between the police and the community.
    "I think it's good," he said.


    Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/2011/03...#ixzz1GJgMOx9H


    What do you guys think? From the outside looking in, seems like a sharp contrast from the days of Chief Mendoza. If it had been a "questionable" shooting, I could see the Chief taking the route he has, but it seems as clean as it gets. I'm a little disappointed the route the Chief has taken thus far. Any opinions?

  • #2
    the whole story makes me want to throw up, Officer Romer did an outstanding job and i back him 100% he was nearly brought onto the highway where the outcome for him would have been a lot worse i feel. Mr. Thomas made a choice, a choice that led to him being shot in front of his kids, that is no doubt a terrible thing, but it doesnt take away from the fact that the officers actions were a direct result of his choice. If Mr.Thomas would have exited the vehicle and complied with the officers requests everything would be fine. I hate how the race issue is brought into this when the race of the actor in this case makes no difference. If someone is dragging me from a car and i feel like they are trying to take me onto a freeway to kill me i could care less if they are white, black, green or orange i am going to do whatever it takes to stop the vehicle. Just my 2 cents....
    In Valor there is hope

    Comment


    • #3
      A sore point with several speakers was that children were involved.

      Thomas, 32, was shot by officer J. Romer during a traffic stop. Three of Thomas' children were in the back seat.
      Thomas refused to get out of his SUV and locked the doors. When the officer reached through a partly open window to unlock the driver's door, Thomas rolled up his window, trapping the officer's arm, police have said. Thomas then drove forward, dragging Romer, who eventually got onto the SUV's running board, pulled his weapon and fired 12 shots at Thomas,
      Sh1tbird! Who created the situation, officer Romer?

      Terrence Swanson said he and others were working "diligently behind the scenes to open proper and clandestine investigations of the officers in this shooting."
      "We can no longer be simply passive about social injustices in our communities," he said.
      Who's this Swanson guy a wanna be Jesse Jackson?

      Another speaker asked Halstead whether he was "really conscious of the mindset of the black community."
      If he wasn't I'm sure he is now.


      "We respect you," she said, referring to the Police Department. "But we don't like you."
      DUH!

      She asked whether he would be "open to a citizens review board."
      With your mentality? NO!


      Chief Thomas Windham, opposed such boards, saying untrained residents would not be qualified to investigate complaints against professional police officers. And the Fort Worth City Council has never been receptive to the idea.
      Good thing!


      Moss said Thursday that he thinks that Halstead needs to be commended for looking into additional ways of further opening communication between the police and the community.
      "I think it's good," he said.

      Then out loud he said...
      Last edited by OneAdam12; 03-11-2011, 04:25 PM.
      Pete Malloy, "The only thing black and white about this job is the car."

      Comment


      • #4
        This just ****es me off.

        Halstead needs to grow a pair and tell these people to pound sand. He should be warning every citizen that if you endanger the life life of a cop expect to get dead.

        Sickening.

        Comment


        • #5
          I think we can all agree to the facts, just pointing out the dissapointment with the chief.

          Comment


          • #6

            If you guys don't read the Police Limit comic, you should.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by fencipede View Post

              If you guys don't read the Police Limit comic, you should.
              Hehehehehehehe

              Comment


              • #8
                citizens review board....pathetic. how about we send a bunch of cops to IBM and lecture them on the manufacturing of computers. wait, that wouldnt make sense....but somehow having a bunch of ignorant citizens lecture us on how to do our jobs does..
                Originally posted by crass cop
                Just do it in front of a camera and try not to get a boner and you shoudl be fine.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by LaPlaca View Post
                  citizens review board....pathetic. how about we send a bunch of cops to IBM and lecture them on the manufacturing of computers. wait, that wouldnt make sense....but somehow having a bunch of ignorant citizens lecture us on how to do our jobs does..
                  I think he should have pointed out that we already have a review board and its called a Grand Jury, and they're going to No-Bill this one.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I just hope this isn't a sign of things to come for Fort Worth.

                    Comment

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