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Shot In The Back: When can police fire on fleeing suspects? – Chicago Sun Times

CHICAGO — In decades past, police officers who shot suspects as they ran away were more likely to expect praise than criminal charges. And while the legal landscape and public opinion have shifted in recent years, it’s never a certainty that such shootings will result in officer indictments.

Prosecutors moved quickly to charge a white officer with criminal homicide Wednesday in last week’s death of an unarmed black teenager who was shot in the back while fleeing a traffic stop near Pittsburgh. In Georgia, another white police officer accused of fatally shooting a black man who was running away was fired and jailed.

In two other fatal police shootings — on Monday in Galveston, Texas, and on Saturday in Minneapolis — it remains to be seen whether charges will come. Those shootings also involved people who were running away.

A look at some of the history and legal principles behind such cases:

via Shot in the back: When can police fire on fleeing suspects? — Chicago Sun-Times

UPDATE: Darrien Hunt

No matter what the 911 caller said, the most relevant issue is that Darrien was shot in the back by the police. The police are trying to distract from that by relying on the so-called credibility of the 911 caller.

Let Our Voices Echo

Darrien

UPDATE: 10-4-14 The audio recording of the 911 call that lead to the killing of a 22-year-old Utah man may contradict what cops initially said about the incident.

The Guardian reports that Saratoga Springs Police previously said they were called to a strip mall to investigate a “suspicious individual” carrying a sword. But the 911 call (which can be heard above) mentions nothing about Hunt being suspicious.

The caller said Hunt was “just walking” around the strip mall. The Guardian notes that, under Utah laws, Hunt would be legally allowed to carry a sword, even if it were real. The sword was a replica, according to Hunt’s family.

Police have said Hunt was killed after he “lunged” at officers after a confrontation outside a bank. But witnesses said Hunt was running away as shots were fired and the Hunt’s family lawyer said an independent autopsy showed the 22-year-old African-American was…

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