Car Chase = Qualified Immunity to Cops ?

Discussion in 'Legal & Political Archive' started by RicInOR, Feb 13, 2014.

  1. Riot

    Riot
    Benton County, Washington
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,078
    Likes Received:
    1,849
    Many of you guys are looking at this the wrong way.

    Should officers be able to use FORCE in an attempt to prevent a suspect from escaping? Yes.

    Should officers be able to use DEADLY FORCE to prevent the substaintal risk of death or serious bodily injury to others? Yes.


    However, we shouldn't give blanket checks to police to say "yes, you can shoot at cars trying to flee." What about the passengers? What about the other cars on the road? If police are more of a danger to others than the person they are trying to arrest then they need to stop doing what they are doing...PERIOD. Even if it means the guy gets away or even if it means they've got to call in other agencies to take the lead (crossing county/state lines, etc.).

    This isn't a cut and dry answer...anytime an officer uses force (especially deadly force) they better have a good justification for it and used it in a manner that didn't endanger innocent people.

    Having a CCW doesn't make you a "good guy" any more than having a gun makes you a "bad guy".
     
  2. BDA.45

    BDA.45
    oregon
    Well-Known Member 2016 Volunteer

    Messages:
    997
    Likes Received:
    2,107
    In short, yes absolutely. Although the question is difficult because of our judicial system. KISS.... Not necessarily have law degrees but be fluent in the constitutional aspects. How is it that everyday people like ourselves get away with knowing constitutional "law" but they don't have to? When one of these dudes asks to see ID and I refuse that should be end of contact. ( I use ID because it simplifies things) But that's not normally the case unless YOU know exactly what's going on. They should know that also; they probably do but choose to ignore it because most people don't care.
     
  3. chariot13

    chariot13
    Near Eugene/Springfield
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,116
    Likes Received:
    595
    Fixed it for you. If you want to argue this, the 10's of thousands in CT that are refusing to register their guns are the good guys and any cop that enforces that law on them is the bad guy.
     
    BDA.45 and (deleted member) like this.
  4. BDA.45

    BDA.45
    oregon
    Well-Known Member 2016 Volunteer

    Messages:
    997
    Likes Received:
    2,107
    Most of this... And if you've read any law, this is ALREADY there.
     
  5. fd15k

    fd15k
    Tigard,OR
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,451
    Likes Received:
    495
    And I think this is where we have a disconnect. You may know some of your rights based on common knowledge, some familiarity with civics, etc. But you can't reliably dissect every single law you may be affected by and say "oh, this law is unconstitutional, i'm not going to obey it, and i will not get convicted for its violation". This is because the ultimate instance for that determination is a court, but not a cop or a citizen (outside jury context).
     
  6. chariot13

    chariot13
    Near Eugene/Springfield
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,116
    Likes Received:
    595
    lmao.... Again you think its worth an American suffering an infringement to their constitutional rights at the behest of a less valuable law (state, federal, local). It doesn't matter because some cops will continue to not enforce and some people will continue to ignore said laws. With all the cops that refuse to enforce a lot of these dumb laws, going on with their day. The same as the millions of Americans that ignore every law out there will continue to go on with their day. The % of people 'caught' remains very small with the amount of people 'known' to have broken laws even less. Thankfully.
     
    BDA.45 and (deleted member) like this.
  7. Riot

    Riot
    Benton County, Washington
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,078
    Likes Received:
    1,849
    Not arguing this at all...but lets go all the way on this chapter:

    What about people that use force against Law Enforcement attempting to enforce an Unconstitutional law?

    This all boils down to Tenesse vs Garner and what "Qualified Immunity" really means and applies to. As I worded it (prevention or loss of life or serious bodily injury) can apply to a fleeing vehicle....just not ALL fleeing vehicles.
     
    wou42 and (deleted member) like this.
  8. chariot13

    chariot13
    Near Eugene/Springfield
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,116
    Likes Received:
    595
    I hope 'the people', "that use force against Law Enforcement attempting to enforce an Unconstitutional law", succeed by any means necessary.
     
    BDA.45 and (deleted member) like this.
  9. BDA.45

    BDA.45
    oregon
    Well-Known Member 2016 Volunteer

    Messages:
    997
    Likes Received:
    2,107
    But that's not how this conversation started. It started with the police executing someone for simply refusing to stop. Actually at high speed, and evolved into this. Which is great from psychological aspect. It proves the point of distortion which is exactly what would happen if given immunity. Look how this conversation evolved in 48 posts. 1 officer given the power to shoot upon a fleeing vehicle WITHOUT accountability is dangerous. Like my previous post, every action they take should be under the microscope.
     
  10. Riot

    Riot
    Benton County, Washington
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,078
    Likes Received:
    1,849
    But here in lies the issue...when an officer has an unruly subject, they can't just automatically throw the guy to the ground- they have to have justification for it and they have to go through the appropriate steps.

    We, as citizens, have to do the same...instead of jumping on the "f_ the police!" bandwagon and shoot at cops- we should be advocating non-violent solutions to change the laws and educate the populous and our Law Enforcement Brethren.

    I, for one, believe wholeheartedly that it is the sworn duty of every Law Enforcement offical to question the Constitution-ality of a law. The fact that "it's the law" or "I was following orders" wasn't an adequate excuse for the Nazis and it's not an adequate excuse now.

    Nevertheless...

    It's hypocritical how you are quick to question the force being used from police breaking the law but are quick to advocate force on them.


    *Riot Out*
     
  11. BDA.45

    BDA.45
    oregon
    Well-Known Member 2016 Volunteer

    Messages:
    997
    Likes Received:
    2,107
    The problem with this is justification usually comes AFTER person has been injured and subsequently arrested. This is where it needs to be nipped in the bud. I can refuse all day but I'm gonna get ripped from my car/sidewalk and jacked up and have to defend MY actions when it should be the officer who has to proclaim HIS actions. (Not the right wording but works for me...) I'll give a scenario, you open carrying in Forest Grove ( cause you can't in beaverton w/o CHL) and officer forcefully removes your firearm, cuffs you and arrests you for not giving ID. You could have been unruly because you knew the law and your rights but got jacked in the process. Where is that right? I can't think anymore, I'm done. Good night.
     
  12. fd15k

    fd15k
    Tigard,OR
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,451
    Likes Received:
    495
    I actually didn't go into the question of application of QI in this particular case at all, not in this thread. I jumped on the statement that there should be
    no immunity of any kind for the LEOs. That's what I disagreed with, and I tried to articulate why QI is needed. I assume you still insist on microscoping the
    LEO instead of the policy/law he is acting upon, so I will depart from this conversation and leave it at that :)
     
  13. LogicBomb

    LogicBomb
    Grants Pass
    Active Member

    Messages:
    278
    Likes Received:
    122
    and what is wrong with knowing the document that you swore to uphold?
     
    BDA.45 and (deleted member) like this.
  14. mhinagoya

    mhinagoya
    Sedro Woolley, WA
    Member

    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    32
    I don't care to engage in the discussion of the actual mechanics of high speed chase, neither do I choose to judge a presumed benefit. What I do see is that placing police above that portion of the law is actually a constitutional matter.

    In years gone past, one of the benefits of having the king make you a Duke or a Baron was that being nobility placed you above a certain level of the law and it was tiered accordingly. Only the King was above the law forbidding murder and rape, but other levels of nobility had associated laws that simply didn't apply to them. Hence, the part in our Constitution forbidding the granting of titles of nobility.

    Simply put, placing a person, profession, or sub group in a position where a portion or portions of the law can't be applied to them is the granting of a title of nobility. (Section 1, article 9).

    This "title of nobility" isn't about someone getting to rub elbows with other royalty or to gain access to private clubs and boxes at horse races. It's about "your highness", implying that I'm a 'lowness'. Miss Justice is blindfolded because we have no titles of nobility and all are equal under the law. There is no person of greater value than another, regardless of what the oval office may think (convicted criminals excepted, as their legal status is different).

    Bill.
     
  15. fd15k

    fd15k
    Tigard,OR
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,451
    Likes Received:
    495
    It is especially a constitutional matter since being "government" puts LEOs under scrutiny of the Bill of Rights. Let's look at these two scenarios.

    1) Citizen is put in a situation where he reasonably believes his life is in danger, shoots and kills the suspect. Later investigation shows
    that the suspect was not armed, not dangerous, and wasn't up to anything bad.

    2) LEO is put in a situation where he reasonably believes his life is in danger, shoots and kills the suspect. Later investigation shows
    that the suspect was not armed, not dangerous, and wasn't up to anything bad.

    :D

    So many folks here will say that #1 is a good shoot. Opinions may vary on the #2, especially since there is a record of "abuse of power" for
    the police. Difference is though, by virtue of being a government employee in official capacity, one is also subject to a bunch of additional
    liabilities in this situation. And that is what QI provides a limited protection against. Keyword limited.

    Civil Liability
     
  16. fd15k

    fd15k
    Tigard,OR
    Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,451
    Likes Received:
    495
    A lot of my posts in this thread expand on the topic. But here is one simple example for you. You know how lawyers
    specialize in civil rights law, family law, criminal law, self defense law, immigration law, variety of other law ? Why can't
    they just "know the document" and be good ?

    I remember there was that case that brought up the subject of Absolute Immunity (which is the one I think is terrible).
    Basically cops round up some guy, but they're not sure about the law he broke. So they reach out to nothing less but
    a DA in their area. DA says "yeah, book him". Later it was revealed that DA was wrong, and the arrest was wrongful.
    Nobody got penalized, since cops were well within QI, and DA is granted AI.
     
  17. ThePhonMan

    ThePhonMan
    Spokanistan
    Gold Supporter Gold Supporter

    Messages:
    293
    Likes Received:
    505
    I guess I have a fundamental problem with the premise of this entire discussion.

    We can’t expect cops, “who are hopped up on adrenaline during a high-speed chase”, to exercise good driving judgment so in an attempt to reduce any risk we will enable these same people to discharge a firearm at a moving vehicle (possibly from their own moving vehicle)? All on the pretense of stopping someone that has the potential of causing death or serious injury? And then we’ll throw in a law to indemnify them for their “nice try” should anything go horribly wrong? How is this any different than causing an accident in the first place?

    99% of pursuits are governed by Department Policy and not some kind of special pursuit law enacted by their particular State. Any officer that follows Department Policy on any number of things they do in their daily duty is indemnified already. If they violate policy they are open to both civil and criminal charges. If they are within policy the department is obligated to defend them (and all others they serve with). From my experience, most larger departments have a fairly straightforward pursuit policy: 1) don’t push the pursuit (climb up the chased car’s butt) and maintain a safe following distance, 2) stay in constant radio contact, 3) always defer to air assets when/if available and 4) discontinue pursuit if things get hairy, lather, rinse, repeat.

    Unfortunately, in this day and age in our larger metropolitan areas, a fair percentage of stolen cars are stolen for the purpose of committing another crime. You never know if the person is fleeing because they are drunk, expired license, just knocked over a quickie-mart, etc. But providing statutory permission to shoot to possibly kill is not a good answer.
     
    fd15k and (deleted member) like this.

Share This Page