Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Three shootings in Vallejo

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A police officer guns down three people in 5 months and then gets a promotion. This is US police today. Albert Samaha reports for Buzzfeed News:

Officer Sean Kenney had shot two people in less than five months, and even though they had both died, he was still patrolling Vallejo, California, on Oct. 24, 2012, when he responded to a call about a domestic disturbance.

The report came in after neighbors heard a commotion in Jeremiah Moore’s front yard at around 1 a.m. Marvin Clouse, who lived next door, went outside to see what was going on. Jaime Alvarado, who lived across the street, looked out his window.

Moore, who was white, was a friendly neighbor. He was autistic, his family said. He lived with his boyfriend Jason Jessie and the two of them fixed up old cars, which sat parked on their front lawn. The garage was packed with antiques and vintage electronics that Jessie spruced up and sold on eBay. One of the items he kept in the garage, Clouse said, was a 1920s-era .22-caliber rifle.

In recent months, neighbors had noticed that the couple had started acting strange — paranoid rants, extravagant conspiracy theories, that sort of thing. They had started taking peyote and other heavy drugs, Clouse said.

“They were really nice guys, but they had a mental breakdown,” said Clouse.

Moore and Jessie were in their front yard, naked, smashing their cars. Clouse pulled out his phone to record what he was seeing. It was dark outside, so you can’t see anything in the video, but the audio is clear. “You start the fire,” Jessie told Moore. Moore went back inside the house and within minutes smoke was rising from out the back of the house. By now, police had received multiple calls about the disturbance. Patrol cars pulled up and officers stepped out.

“And within about 30 seconds they shot Jeremiah,” Clouse said.

There was a volley of several gunshots at first. Then a pause of a few seconds. Then “Show me your hands!” Then two more shots.

The police later said that Moore had pointed a rifle at the officers. In the press release version of events, Moore “appeared from the back of the interior of the house with a rifle. The man with the rifle placed the barrel of the rifle directly against an officer’s stomach. Another officer saw this and fearing for his life and the life of his fellow officer, immediately discharged his firearm.”

In July 2014, the D.A.’s office cleared Kenney of the Moore shooting. The two-page summary regurgitated the version told in the press release, with one difference: that Moore did not press the rifle against an officer’s stomach but was pointing it at the officer from further away.

The summary did not mention any non-police witnesses. Clouse, who said he spoke to investigators, was not cited. According to Michael Haddad, the lawyer for Moore’s family, the D.A.’s office did not contact Jaime Alvarado.

“The D.A. is just choosing who to believe,” Haddad said. “Every cop knows if he wants to justify a shooting, just say, I feared for my life or for someone else’s life. If our D.A.s are just going to take police at their word, nobody will police the police.”

The version Alvarado and Clouse told was much different from what the police claimed. From Alvarado’s vantage point, Moore was standing on his porch with his hands up. His arms were flailing and he had a nervous look on his face. Clouse believed that, between his autism and the drugs, Moore was in a state of panic. “He was unable to respond,” he said.

Alvarado, who was advised by Haddad to refrain from speaking to any more media outlets, recalled to local public radio station KQED last year that Moore “can’t stop moving. He starts shaking. That’s when the officer gets, like, scared. He got the gun and shoots him.”

He added: “This guy who got shot, he doesn’t have a rifle in his hands.”

Moore was the third person killed by Officer Sean Kenney in 21 weeks. Months later, rather than a reprimand, Kenney earned a promotion to detective. . .

Continue reading. As is so often the case, the official police story is contradicted by witnesses to the shooting. I’m surprised that the police didn’t use the usual line (“he made a furtive movement toward his waistband”) and claimed that he had a rifle.

Interesting how prosecutors cover for the police, but the police have ways of retaliating against prosecutors who do not toe the line.

Written by LeisureGuy

11 March 2015 at 10:50 am

Posted in Law Enforcement

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