Saturday 9 October 2010

It Shouldn’t Happen To A Vet Barrister

Max Hastings huffs and puffs about the shooting of an unfortunate man.

No, not Jean Charles DeMenezes, that’s such old news. This is, of course, the coked-up, booze-sodden Saunders:
Many people will agree, saying: the police have a tough job; anybody who fires guns recklessly and confronts armed officers deserves whatever he gets.

I cannot agree.
Well, it’s not up to you. It’s up to the jury.

And they decided it was lawful (something which rightly bothers Anna Raccoon, given the state's decision to forgo the death penalty option in other instances).
Armed response teams wear paramilitary garb and equip themselves in imitation of the SAS.

This is necessary when they are mobilised to address terrorists or violent criminals like Raoul Moat, who blinded PC David Rathband in Cumbria before killing himself in May this year.
A coked-up lawyer firing blindly and drunkenly out of his window into a city street, you see, isn’t a ‘violent criminal’ as far as Max is concerned…
More alarming was the apparent mindset of the officers ¬conducting the five-hour siege. They rejected the traditional view of British policemen, and of any humane society, that their objective should be to try to take their man alive.
Well, no, actually. That was one reason given for not letting the wife talk to him – in case that was what triggered his suicide.

Did you listen to any of the evidence, Max?
I reject the view of an anonymous marksman who gave ¬evidence at the inquest, saying his action was ‘absolutely ¬necessary’, as part of the police role in putting themselves ‘between the public and the bad man’.

This was not a bad man but a mad man.
I’ve never seen anything that says a mad man can’t kill just as easily by pulling a trigger as any bad man…

Meanwhile, Richard Preston does indeed remember De Menezes, but thinks that the Saunders case is worse:
The jury in the Saunders case has returned a verdict of lawful killing. They could scarcely do anything else – the idea that police officers put in the line of fire and reacting to a dangerous, unpredictable situation could be guilty of acting unlawfully would undermine much of the bond between the force and the public.

But the gross over-reaction to the situation (59 officers, 100 guns, 12 marksmen with rifles trained on Saunders), the quite shocking failures of communication and command, some of the macho evidence given, anonymously, by armed officers should all worry us deeply.
The fact that several supposedly proficient ‘marksmen’ can’t hit a cow or a horse worries me deeply. The fact that they can hit a man - when he turns his gun on them - not at all.
When Jean Charles de Menezes was mistakenly shot the context was a week in which random terror had been brought to the streets of London, the threat of mass murder was very real and officers had, they thought, only seconds in which to stop a potentially deadly suspect.

In contrast, Mark Saunders, the legal owner of a shotgun, was surrounded in his own home.
I remember a siege in – I think – Brixton (am now informed it was Hackney, memory, eh?) a while back, over Christmas.

The police tried containment there. The gunman set fire to the block of flats. So I can see why the fact that he was holed up in his own house wasn’t considered much comfort…

The thread that runs through these columns is, as DumbJon has pointed out, that this shouldn’t happen to them when they act just like a member of the underclass!
“See, it's true - the rich are different. If this case had happened on a sink estate in Liverpool or Glasgow, he'd be 'Mark, who'?”
I thought ‘equality’ was what the progressives wanted..?

And neither of these columns can come up with any new evidence, or anything to dispute the findings of the jury. Just a complaint that the dead man was ‘no threat’. When what they really mean is, he was ‘no chav’.

Well, bullets don’t care about the class struggle.


Anonymous said...

how is the use of lethal force in self defence of a person armed with a deadly weapon who has demonstrated the desire to use said weapon comparable with use of deadly force on a unarmed, restrained, defenceless individual comparable?

The police could have and maybe should have had tanks and helicopters until and if this mad/bad bloke put his gun down and surrendered.

Completely different to a paper seller who chose to walk in the opposite direction from the police with his hands in his pocket completely unarmed having displayed no violent tendencies but still kicked to death. Or the execution of a prisoner who whatever their crimes is capable of being prevented from committing any other crime until and if they prove the ability to change, the chances of which with some I admit are slim to none but then if none is it not our responsibility to protect ourselves and others from their potential and use them to understand how we prevent creating more of them? Because wasting that opportunity is almost as bad as leaving you car unlocked with valuables on display and then winging because you became a victim of theft.

Anonymous said...

like a dog chasing its tail, execution of people caught and incapable of comminitg crime is wrong. Like eating healthy food as opposed to junk pointing 20,000 SA80s at an armed nutter is a completely normal act of self preservation.

Anonymous said...

the fact that prisoners commit crime on each other and the police seem incapable of containment is a comment on prison staff and police officers not mad/bad people

Captain Haddock said...

Max Hastings is a weapons grade twat ..

He was such when he was spouting about the Falklands campaign .. and he hasn't improved one iota since ..

He talks out of his over-paid, over-indulged arse ..

Anonymous said...

look up 'heroic restraint' it is one policy has had and might win us some ground against muslim terrorists and enlist the support of right minded muslims in thier grasp

Anonymous said...

I admit you'd have a problem trying to get American police or armed forces or Britsh coppers and armed forces bying into 'heroic restraint'

Much simpler to just bobm the fuck out of anything moving, again a dog chasing its tail

Anonymous said...

ye ha jesters dead

TDK said...

gross over-reaction to the situation (59 officers, 100 guns, 12 marksmen with rifles trained on Saunders)


In contrast to the case of de Menezes Mark Saunders ... was surrounded in his own home

I can't follow this - was surrounding him right and wrong?

Chuckles said...

Tat he presented a danger to imself and others is clear.
However, the effective range of a shotgun loaded with buckshot or similar is probably about 30-40 yards, so the only issue I have is the total overreaction in numbers deployed, and the usual spectacular ineptitude of the UK police in any situation.

Dredd, Judge Joseph said...

Question 15c of the Application/Renewal form for the grant/renewal of a shotgun certificate asks if the applicant has ever suffered with depression. I take this bloke ticked 'NO'... Of course, if such a person chooses to lie then, at present, the police are not guaranteed to find out, and GP's are not duty bound to disclose facts of this nature and may not know that their patient is a certificate holder, BUT... his wife knew, his friends knew, his Psychiatrist knew, his work colleagues probably knew that he had mental health problems and had a shotgun, BUT DID NOTHING ABOUT IT, ESPECIALLY THE WIFE, who kept having to talk this guy down, according to her account. I think this is a case of WHEN not IF Mr. Saunders went ballistic with that gun, and all those people who knew he was borderline psychotic, had the opportunity to prevent this, by telling the authorities, who could have made the appropriate approaches. Authority for the police to speak to an Applicant's GP is contained within the Application/Renewal form, so if the police had had the tip off they could have spoken to the appropriate medical person. They could have revoked his certificate if they considered him to be a danger to the public safety or the peace and demanded he hand over his gun. But no one said anything to them that this trouble was brewing. This criticism is principally directed especially at Mr. Saunders' wife, who had intimate knowledge of the situation but did nothing. She should be castigated in public for this, but she belongs to the untouchable set and no criticism will go her way, I am sure. The public and Police Officers have had their lives put at risk by this maniac and they have had to shoot someone dead. Not a happy prospect and, having come within a hairsbreadth of having to do it once myself, not one that anyone, with an ounce of human feeling would relish.

Anonymous said...

yep, the taking of human life, not something that anyone with feeling should relish or promote or desire. but still we investigate as a solution to crime, WTF



Anonymous said...

kill them, kill them all

AH ha haha haha!

JuliaM said...

"Max Hastings is a weapons grade twat ..

He was such when he was spouting about the Falklands campaign..."

Oh, now there's a blast from the past..

"I can't follow this - was surrounding him right and wrong?"

It's impeccable logic, isn't it?

"...his wife knew, his friends knew, his Psychiatrist knew, his work colleagues probably knew that he had mental health problems and had a shotgun, BUT DID NOTHING ABOUT IT..."

Quite. Clearly she feels a prick of guilt. But it's too late now.

Squander Two said...

> the gross over-reaction to the situation (59 officers, 100 guns, 12 marksmen with rifles trained on Saunders)

Jesus, but that's stupid. Why on Earth would the number of guns matter? 59 officers and 100 guns means effectively 59 guns. Then 12 marksmen actually pointing their weapons at Saunders means effectively 12 guns. He's counting the spare guns in the back of the van to make his stats sound scarier.