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View Diary: The Movie Fruitvale Station Hit Hard, Left Me Emotionally Paralyzed (102 comments)

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  •  There were gasps all around me in the audience (11+ / 0-)

    at the close when the title card came up that revealed the sentence the killer cop served.

    •  What do you think he should have served? (0+ / 0-)

      Obviously, he screwed up very badly.

      But does anyone think he deliberately killed Grant?

      •  I think it's possible, but... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        nipit, StrayCat, ecostar, Timaeus

        even if he didn't, he has to be accountable for his actions. Can't have cops accidentally shooting people dead because they can't tell difference between a pistol and a taser or because they don't have then mental make-up to do their job properly--especially if they end up killing somebody.  Not to mention that the overzealous cops created and maintained the situation.

      •  Um - this is more than a "screw up" (6+ / 0-)

        I can tell you, as a person very well trained with hand-guns and other arms, that it is impossible to mistake a taser for a service weapon.

        The only reason he got the light sentence he did (time served - and not even in prison - he was in jail) was because the trial venue was moved out of the Bay area, to Los Angeles, and interestingly,  there were no African Americans on the jury.

        Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

        by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Jul 28, 2013 at 05:44:01 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Didn't know there were no blacks on the jury... (0+ / 0-)

          That makes all the difference in the world. That was the subject of my last diary.

        •  Judge decides sentence, not the jury (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bewild, Radiowalla

          Do you really think he decided to kill Grant in front of everyone?

          Mistaking a taser for a gun may be hard, but people have done stupider things.

          For example, when I used to do sky driving we studied fatal accidents to understand how they happened and make sure they did not happen to us.

          One experienced sky diver jumped out of a plane without a parachute.  There was a camera man on the jump filming him as well.  The sky diver's reaction when he tried to pull his ripcord and realized he was not wearing a parachute had to be seen to be believed.

          •  The jury had 3 conviction options, so... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ecostar, Tonedevil, Terri

            ...racial diversity really did matter.  The judge gave jurors three conviction options: second-degree murder (with a sentence of 15 years to life in prison), voluntary manslaughter (3 to 11 years), or involuntary manslaughter (2 to 4 years); in addition the jury could have decided to acquit. At the very least, Officer Mehserle should've served the max possible sentence of 4 years since he was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. IMO, 11 months wasn't enough.

            •  Given that Mehserle was not drunk or on drugs (0+ / 0-)

              and that he wasn't doing something obviously dangerous and with disregard for Grant's safety like playing with his gun when he accidentally shot him that seems excessive.

              Can you explain why you think Mehserle's case deserved the maximum punishment for involuntary manslaughter?

              Or can you explain why you think voluntary manslaughter was appropriate?  Was there any evidence at all that Mehserle intended to kill Grant?

      •  How about what a regular citizen would have (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bewild, Tonedevil, Timaeus

        received for a negligent homicide?  Carelessness has consequences.  When you take a life because you're so damn careless you pull out a gun rather than a taser and shoot someone who's helpless with it - yeah, more than 11 months seems appropriate.

        Thing is, he shouldn't have even been pulling out his taser at that point.  There was virtually no need for it. But he had to be the big guy  - blecause he could.  He loved that feeling of power.  He could really show the punk.  Asshole deserved a lot more than 11 months.

        "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

        by gustynpip on Sun Jul 28, 2013 at 06:43:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Based on site below, that would be involuntary (0+ / 0-)

          manslaughter in California: http://www.shouselaw.com/...

          However, I don't think the Grant case meets the definition.

          California Penal Code 192(b) PC defines "involuntary manslaughter" as an unlawful killing that takes place

          during the commission of an unlawful act (not amounting to a felony), or

          during the commission of a lawful act which involves a high risk of death or great bodily harm that is committed without due caution or circumspection.3

          I don't think a cop tasing someone meets either definition.
      •  Why taze a prone, handcuffed man? All video (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Kwik, Tonedevil, Terri, Timaeus

        of this incident, indicate Grant was on his stomach when he was shot.  So Grant's "aggressively resisting arrest" behavior was not to do exactly what the police officer ordered him to do fast enough for the officer's convenience.  So his defense, from my perspective, is that he was intending to torture the suspect for non-compliance, and just pulled the wrong weapon . . . since I guess tazers have the same weight, size and feel of a pistol . . . and then shot him without a moments notice . . . because shooting him the very second he drew the weapon was necessary to get the suspect to obey his orders, even though the suspect was handcuffed and prone.

        All of the video I have see of police tazing a person for "resisting" arrest, it's usually b/c they weren't getting up fast enough or responding precisely to the orders the officer has given them.  They are basically torturing them to "encourage" compliance with simple orders.  In my eyes, it's a gross misuse of the tazer.  It was never intended to "pacify" prone, handcuffed suspects.  It was intended as an alternative to lethally shooting a non-handcuffed potentially dangerous suspect.

        Worse, the act of tazing the individual makes them less able to obey simple police orders.  I've seen several videos where the police officer tazed an individual b/c he wouldn't get up, stand-up, walk, etc., and when the person couldn't get up b/c they were still feeling the debilitating effects of the tazer, they were tazed again for non-compliance with the order.  It's just cruel and unnecessary torture.

        So I don't care whether he was using a gun or a tazer, he didn't just screw up badly. Even if he intended to taze Grant, his actions were unnecessary and cruel.  He was just another high-on-his-authority racist cop, dispensing his idea of "justice" against a prone, unarmed black man.

        The only thing we have to fear is fear itself - FDR. Obama Nation. -6.13 -6.15

        by ecostar on Sun Jul 28, 2013 at 12:46:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You seem to feel that Mehserle should be sentenced (0+ / 0-)

          based on your perceptions of the misdeeds of other people.

          That seems unreasonable.

          •  I clearly stated early on that video of incident (0+ / 0-)

            showed a prone, handcuffed suspect.  the cops actions were that of a bully, not a cop dealing with a dangerous suspect that needed to be pacified.  A taser wasn't necessary, and I don't buy his lie that he didn't know the difference between a pistol and a taser.  They are not the same weight, shape and feel.  I included the stories of the other incidents as context, not the basis of my opinion regarding this bastard. You may feel the need to defend police brutality, I don't.

            The only thing we have to fear is fear itself - FDR. Obama Nation. -6.13 -6.15

            by ecostar on Tue Jul 30, 2013 at 08:01:41 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  If Mehserle deliberately shot Grant he should have (0+ / 0-)

              been convicted of murder.

              But do you honestly believe that happened?

              In front of everyone?

              He must have known that at minimum it would end his career.

              And the video of the incident seems to show Mehserle absolutely gobsmacked when the gun goes off.

              •  The cop was being unnecessarily aggressive when (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Kwik

                he "accidently" shot Grant, and deserved more than an 11 month sentence. The judicial result wasn't just, and I'm sick of people boo-hooing on behalf of the cop.

                The only thing we have to fear is fear itself - FDR. Obama Nation. -6.13 -6.15

                by ecostar on Fri Aug 02, 2013 at 02:34:03 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

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