Cologne or toy gun?
Police on Thursday said the shooting was justified as a teen standing next to Jamar Nicholson was holding a replica gun, and they believed he was about to shoot.
Thursday evening, Nicholson told KCAL9’s Laurie Perez that he never saw a gun, replica or not.
He told Perez he isn’t sure why police opened fire.
“I was so scared because, you know, I never been shot at before,” Nicholson said....
The 15-year-old freshman, who’s involved in more than one police and city mentoring program and says he’s up for an internship at the mayor’s office, won’t draw comparisons to other recent police shootings of young black men, though he is upset by what he saw as rough treatment.
“The only time they apologized to me personally was when they were uncuffing me from the bed and saying we made a mistake,” said Nicholson.
At the risk of causing outrage fatigue, you need to see this article from the L.A. Times. The unarmed teen who was mistakenly shot in the back by police who thought that his friend was pointing a gun at him says that he never saw a toy gun. His friend was squirting him with a bottle of Cologne.
The circumstances make more sense now. The police shout at a kid to "drop the gun" and the kid doesn't respond because he isn't even holding a gun, so they shoot at him and hit the guy they were supposedly trying to protect. (How likely is it that you are going to drive by just as a homicide is about to take place? Has that ever happened to a police officer?)
Have the police stooped so low as to start planting toy guns when they screw up? I wouldn't want to think so, but I have no idea why this good kid who wasn't even stealing cigarillos or trying to sell loose cigarettes, or throwing rocks, or sitting in a car, or doing anything else from our ever-expanding list of capital crimes would have a reason to lie.
And what is this nonsense about "uncuffing him from the bed?" Why the heck was he handcuffed in the first place? Oh I know -- if the police shoot you, you must be the bad guy, especially if your skin is a hair darker than the prevailing acceptable skin tone for your area.
Tragically, the bullet in his back that his causing him so much pain is "too dangerous to remove at this time" according to his doctors. Guns not only kill, they hurt.
Edit: From the policeman's side of the story
The officer who fired his weapon told investigators that he didn’t see the orange tip of the gun that allows gun owners to know a weapon is a replica at first glance....
I didn't see the orange tip
According to one police source — not authorized to speak on-the-record — the officer said the person holding the gun — also a teen and a friend of the 15-year-old who was shot — was also standing in the shooting position. He said the teen whirled around and aimed the gun directly at the teenager.
There are a few things that bother me about this explanation.
First, the gun is hyper-realistic but it has an orange tip like all toys are supposed to. This seems to be a contradiction. I have seen a picture of the supposed toy gun, and the orange tip is quite visible. It was supposedly out in plain view because the gunman was in the "shooting position."
More importantly, was our "gunman" in the "shooting position" when the officer encountered him, or did he "whirl around" and "point the gun directly" at the bystander whom the police then so helpfully shot? These words were put in place to make the officer's actions seem more urgent, but they are contradictory.
Most importantly, since our victim was shot in the back it means that is back was turned to the policeman. However, since the "gunman" "whirled around", it would mean that his back was also to the policemen. So how did the policemen see the gun?
This seems a bit like the story is being Dan Rathered.
I really have no reason to doubt our victim's story -- which is that he asked the friend to squirt him with perfume (kids these days...) I suspect the police mistook the cologne bottle for a gun. Considering that they mistook the "victim" for the "gunman" and claim to have not noticed the orange tip of the fake gun, pretty much anything is possible.
Keep in mind that there are no criminals here; these are just ordinary good kids (although I bet Fox news is working on that...)