Nice article, very informative, Gabe Meline.
To my knowledge it is not illegal to carry a gun (real or not) down the street. The individual was not acting in a threatening manner. The individual did not appear to be aware of the officer. It appears that the individual was shot multiple times before acknowledging the officer's presence.
It would appear that the officer acted too quickly and without correct judgement. The officer could have allowed sufficient time to assess the situation before acting (or awaited backup if he was unable to do so) as no immediate threat was reported.
Wow. Diane Swans story was terrific. And funny.
I was thinking Bennett Valley, but Fountaingrove is a much better example. Thanks Gabe.
It's such a sad and tragic story, but no doubt this police officer will be haunted by this the rest of his life. That gun looked exactly like a very dangerous AK-47 so there was no way for anyone to determine it wasn't real. People state that the police shouldn't have shot a "child", but they didn't know his age. Yes he was young but fresh in their minds was the 12 year old who just shot teachers and students in his school in Nevada. With the proliferation of so many guns in our society, we have created this police state where facing citizens with guns is becoming common place. Could the police have waited 10 more seconds to shoot? perhaps. How many people could have been injured in that time if the gun WAS real and the boy started shooting? No one wants to speculate on that option, but in the mind of the police, that was the real and present danger. There have been many cases of police shooting unarmed persons, but this case simply does not fit that description. The outrage expressed is really out of line with the reality of this particular case. He was not Travon, walking down the street unarmed and attacked for no reason!
I want to thank Gabe for a very informative article. The problem with this shooting is that the officer fired 8 times. After the first shot, he was no longer threatened by what he perceived to be a gunman. The other seven bullets were meant to kill! The suspect was shot in the back...how much of a threat was that? I am so sorry that Andy Lopez is dead. He made a very foolish mistake, one that I hope other kids won't make: DON'T MAKE A TOY WEAPON LOOK REAL.
We need to PROHIBIT ANY ex-military soldier from becoming a police officer!!! PERIOD!!! They come back to the states with a military mind set. They have seen and done things in war that no one should have to deal with. Yet, they do. I feel for the men and women of the armed forces that come back to states messed up. I respect the men and women of the military. I have a close friend that is dealing with both disability and PTSD from the Army. If they want to continue a "military" style life, there are plenty of private security forces out there they could join. But the police and sheriff departments should NOT be one of them.
Jethro: The gun was not even his, it was a friends. You are ignorant to blame him for removing the orange tip. The cop wasn't even out of the car when he said to drop the gun, and "can't remember" if he identified himself as a police officer. The boy had no time to even turn around to see who was yelling at him.
Why is there such a public outcry? Because it is an injustice that a boy has lost his life due to a police officers trigger-happy response. The cop was also fearful for the neighbors, yet his bullets went through a home and into a kitchen cabinet with a 10 month old baby inside. We are lucky there weren't more lives snuffed out by this officers actions. Cops need to be better trained to deal in communities…this is not Iraq. These are every day people, kids playing in an empty lot with paint guns, etc. every day. We/they are not the enemy! We pay their salaries and they should respect the public, even if they live on the "wrong side of town." For you to say it was a "good shoot"? WHF? It's total bullshit that this innocent kid won't live to graduate from 8th grade, high school, get married…all because a cop rushed to judgement. I hope justice is served and the cop goes to jail.
Keith: Your criticism is sadly misplaced. You state that "they (the progressives) are incapable of making a decision. Why have you not criticized the prosecutor as well as the California attorney general's office? As far as the Hobbs vineyard development, Efren remained silent for a long time - in the opinion of many west county residents, TOO long. It was only when there was both an online and an in-person outcry by too many of his constituents to ignore that he FINALLY expressed an opinion on Hobbs' nefarious misdeeds. I notice you did not mention ONE thing in your comment about Efren's reprehensible conduct - conduct that I do not believe is in any way becoming of any elected official at any level of government. Nor did you mention anything about the one person who has been most grievously affected by Efren's nocturnal escapade - the woman who, on the morning of July 13, 2013, was so frightened that she called 9-1-1 not once, but twice. And I highly doubt that she shares your minority opinion that Efren "strikes the right balance." I submit to you that he does not.
While I initially supported the calls for Carrillo's resignation, I have decided to leave this young man alone with his demons. We ALL have them, in various degrees. Watching the Progressives wring their hands over this issue has been an education in itself, and not to their benefit - they seem incapable of making a decision, and certainly we need decisive leaders, like Carrillo, who adamantly spoke out against Paul Hobbs' vineyard development on behalf of his Constituents. Short of a felony conviction, Efren will prevail. I believe he strikes the right balance between our County's needs for jobs, education and reasonable environmental protections. Furthermore, I disagree with our County's favorite political analyst, David McCuan of SSU - Efren WILL take a higher office within the next five years. I Iook forward to working with him in the future.
They put orange tipos on toy guns and airsoft guns for a reason: to prevent others from thinking that it is a real gun. A thirteen year old boy like Andy Lopez knows why the tip is there. He also knows that taking the tip off makes it look more like a real gun. It was his decision. Given that he knew the gun looked like a real one with the tip removed, he should have immediately laid the gun on the ground, before turning around. The cop responded the way they are trained to respond to a threat of death - completely eliminate the threat. That is what he did. It is a shame, but it was a good shoot, and it does not represent a wrongful death.
Raised as the son of a former Fed agent, seemingly the U.S. citizen has loss of gun ownership ......This is the plan concerning U.S. citizens living in the Republic while the police rule the State...Are you laying down your arms and Bill of Rights for a few who plan on owning you?.....Don't be fooled again.....Teach and inform others that are concerned of the their future....Your family has the right to privacy...Exercise it.....
Veolia provides essential human services to both Israelis and Palestinians. I traveled on the light rail, as it twisted through Arab and Jewish neighborhoods. It was filled with all sorts of people, It was lovely, efficient, affordable. Just what you'd want people-movers to be.
I hope that ultimately, our elected officials make their decision based on whats good for Sonoma county- not on some conflict thousands of miles away.
Opens up my eyes.
My father was S.F.P.D., U.S. Department of the Treasury, "A.T. and F. and later I.R.S...Do not involve yourself in any interstate mailings involving funds of "ponzi nature.".......It will take you to the Federal system faster than you can spit...
Great article, thank you!
Criminal actions by local residents who don't need to get to Eureka.....Law enforcement was present and gave orders..."Stay out." ..No vigilante groups shall shut down Union work........It is against the law...Do not trespass......They may "Oak tree " for stepping on their job site...Use common sense. Stay out of their domain.........You maybe looking for another local heaven but Willits "Little Valley" is not it.....
Five acres of land with Redwoods does not pay the bills.....But income from five acres of great grapes will pay the bills....$100 K dollars..per year...
Hi, Gabe et al.
I never got confirmation that my story was received. Were we supposed to? I just want to make sure I don't end up on the wall of shame. Because I even if I didn't get picked, I am a winner simply for being on time.
Where can we read all of them? Are they online, or can you put them up?
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