“What about our lives? Who protects us from the people who are supposed to protect us?”
And he asks a very legitimate question: why should we, the citizens, have to de-escalate our police?
Jameson expresses polite disagreement with the police chief, who explained to him why the officer’s actions were, inevitably, found to be perfectly lawful:
Chief Rausch said that when investigating complaints, it is essential to understand an officer’s mindset to determine the facts. A mindset is not a fact.
Here are the facts that Janish appeared to focus on – the unmarked cab, a black person, the duffel bag and the license plate.
Then here are other facts that he ignored – he knew his mother-in-law was selling the car, it was broad daylight, and I knew her first name, but not her last name. I offered to show him the keys, registration and bill of sale signed by his mother-in-law.
Those are the actual facts. Officer Janish’s mindset was the scenario he created in his head. His fears weren’t facts.
The law cuts a very wide swathe of tolerance for cops’ “mindsets”. Technically, so does all “use of force” law.
But part of cops’ “Mindsets” these days is constant exposure to the idea that violent death awaits around every corner; that every stop could be their last; that their first, last or next contact with the public could end up like this:
Sobering – and dangerous.
If we’re to the point that we The People need to deal with cops more carefully than we do criminals, we’ve got a big problem, here.