Chicago Police Shoots Unarmed Suspect In The Back


On July 28, 2016, 18-year old Paul O’Neal was fatally shot by Chicago police. The shooting is under investigation by the Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA).  Paul was shot in the back.

Yesterday, numerous videos were released to the public.  There is no video of Paul being shot in the back because the body cam of the officer who fired the shot was not turned on.

Some are only looking at this from the side of Paul committing a crime, but there are two sides.  Two wrongs never make a right.

Paul O’Neal was captured on video at a gas station in Bolingbrook, Illinois where 3 vehicles were stolen overnight.  The vehicles were a 2009 Buick Enclave, a 2003 Honda Odyssey and a 2010 Nissan Rogue.   Bolingbrook is a suburb of Chicago.

About 3 hours after the vehicles were stolen in Bolingbrook,  a 2002 Jaguar XKR convertible was reported stolen.  One of the other stolen cars seen at the gas station was recovered nearby.

At about 7:30 p.m. on July 28, 2016, Paul O’Neal is seen driving the Jaguar on the Southside of Chicago. Chicago police attempted to stop the Jaguar, but it hit a Chicago police SUV and a parked car while continuing to flee. Two officers opened fire while Paul was still in the Jaguar.

Paul ran from the car.  There was a 17-year-old boy who was also in the car.  Police took the juvenile into custody.  According to the Cook County medical examiner’s office, Paul was shot once in the back.  Paul’s family however, says that they have not been told how many times Paul was shot.  Paul was unarmed. In the released videos, Paul is shown being handcuffed after he was fatally wounded.

Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson has stripped the three officers of their police powers pending the outcome of an IPRA investigation, saying they violated unspecified department policies.

Procedural Errors

Yesterday, CNN reported that the policies and procedures of the Chicago police forbids them from shooting at a fleeing vehicle.  The videos capture at least 15 shots being fired in about five seconds as the Jaguar passes the officers and drives away.  There were officers waiting in the direction that Paul was driving, and shooting at the fleeing vehicle placed them in harm’s way. The officer who shot Paul in the back admitted that he did not know if Paul was armed or unarmed.

In one of the videos, the officer who shot and killed Paul is captured in a discussion with a Sargent;

“Man, this is so f—– up, man. I don’t want nothing to happen to that f—— guy, dude,” he says to the sergeant. “The way s—‘s going man, I’m going to be f—— crucified, bro.”

At that point, the sergeant seeks to reassure the officer, citing the car theft as justification for what happened.

“Relax, he was in a hot car. Nothing to worry about.”

The officer asks whether a weapon was recovered from the Jaguar.

“I’m not sure, but just relax,” the sergeant says. “Don’t worry about it. They were in a hot car.”

A suspect in a stolen car still has civil rights.  The penalty for stealing cars is not death. An unarmed, fleeing suspect is not a threat.  Police officers in this incident have no discretion to disobey procedures.  They placed citizens and each other in harm’s way by shooting at a fleeing vehicle.  If in fact it was their procedural violations that led one officer to believe that Paul was armed to justify shooting him in the back, then those officers who fired at the fleeing vehicle are just as responsible for Paul’s death as the officer who fired the fatal shot.

There are times I think that the NRA and gun lovers caused the problem in America that makes police officers obsessively nervous that people are armed.  It makes their job all the more difficult, causing them to draw their weapons at the blink of an eye.  It has caused a reverberation effect of fear because even law abiding citizens are fearful of being shot by police officers by accident, negligence, or even the unjustified fear of the shooting officer.   The killings of Bettie Jones, Oscar Grant, Amadou Diallo, Akai Gurley, Rekia Boyd, Shelly Frey, and so many, many others come to mind. How does America overcome the fear?

The video of the press conference offers very interesting questions and points of view.

 

 

Butterfly_tears_by_Dandelion_lion

Butterfly tears, by Dandelion Lion

Posted on 08/06/2016, in Cases, Cops Gone Wild and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. Those who focus on the crime should be asked, whether they value the gift of life or not? This young man would have had to face the consequences for his actions but he did not deserve the death sentence.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Gronda,
      Based on my observations, those who are focused on Paul O’Neal and the crime are as you say — they do not value life. The majority are god haters, having no spiritual morals whatsoever. I think that they are also under the impression that death discriminates and will never pay them nor their family a visit. Life is fragile and precious. I don’t expect for everyone to be a Pacifist such as myself, but the lack of respect for life that I read coming from some folks really disgusts me.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. GD it. I mean really.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mindyme,
      Just imagine if there had been no body cams. Paul’s family would still have questions, and Chicago citizens would have more reason to distrust the police department because of decades of cover-ups and false reports. Now they can let the system work and chances are that the system will let them down. Passing distrust from one agency, to a committee, to another agency, to another committee, etc. accomplishes absolutely nothing positive.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    …. and so it continues! Where’s the end to this inequity and senseless actions? What about “de-escalate”? Arrghhh ….

    Like

    • Horty,
      Thanks for the reblog, dear friend.

      The taking of lives has me very sad. Maybe, just maybe, if this country did not allow everyone to have guns, we would see a difference in policing that is beneficial for officers so they will not have to shoot people, especially in the back.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Anytime, dear friend …. I agree!!! I have a very heavy heart … this is beyond sad. I don’t know the answer …. 😦
        MJ’s son is a policeman with the city of Orlando. We don’t talk about these topics. I’ve seen that he’s on the police’s side. Seems to me, they are brain-washed.
        I’m hating that phrase .. “I feared for my life” …. what about the one shot and killed??? Arrggghhh ….

        Like

        • Horty,
          My deceased husband was once on the police force, and it was a regular thing for his buddies to come over to play poker. Eventually, all but one left the force and the one who stayed became a functional alcoholic. I got to see them as people, but also got to see them as people who covered for each other. To the best of my understanding, it started so they would not be vulnerable to retribution by those they arrested. In other words, to be more safe when off duty, they had to give the impression of being untouchable — make people believe that there was nothing that could be done to cause authorities to disbelieve them.

          What you say about “I feared for my life” is absolutely correct. Fearing for one’s life does not always have to result in killing the other individual. We have seen that happen many times with armed people who have actually killed cops being taken alive.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. yahtzeebutterfly

    It is so tragic and irresponsible (breaking with department policy) that two officers fired their guns at the stolen car. One of them fired one shot and the other officer fired about ten shots (even as the stolen car continued up the road toward the other cruiser that it then crashed into.)

    When these two officers ( I will call them “1” and “2”) were later talking with another officer just after mortally wounded Paul was handcuffed, there was this exchange (starting at 3:11 in the video Xena posted in her article) :

    Officer “1” : Did you shoot?
    Officer “2” : Yeah. You?
    Officer “1” : One shot.

    Then the other officer who had just called in for a medic and whose body cam has its light on red says: They shot at us, too – Right?

    Officer “2” does not respond to that question as continues and points to his partner who is Officer “1” and says to him: I shot at the car after it almost hit you.

    I am not going to say anything more about the other officer in this 3-way conversation, but if you have a chance to watch ALL of the videos carefully, you will gain an understanding of who this other officer is and why his question was so important to him based upon what he had just learned from what Officers “1” and “2” said about their shooting at the stolen car.

    – – – – – – –

    I grieve that no immediate first aid was given to Paul by any of the officers.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. yahtzeebutterfly

    This is the body cam video of the officer who shot Paul in the back as Paul was running away. The body cam was not on during the shooting. The officer apparently turns it on as he opens the gate and leaves the yard of the house where Paul lay dying. The officer turns on the sound after walking the length of the driveway back to the street.

    Like

    • this guy reports there were 2 in the car then later claims somebody else told him that, he only saw one…….and him claiming shots fired at him YES your own officers were shooting at YOU!

      Liked by 2 people

      • yahtzeebutterfly

        Yes, and in my mind, those two officers firing at the stolen car created absolute chaos.

        Liked by 1 person

      • yahtzeebutterfly

        Bill, three different cams are synchronized in the following video with the bottom frame showing the dash cam of the cruiser that crashed with the stolen car. The top two are those of the officers that shot at the stolen car.

        Liked by 1 person

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