Warm blooded murder?
In the Las Vegas desert sun, even the reptilian cops have warm blood.
On July 10, 2010 Erik B. Scott, West Point grad, honorably discharged veteran, Duke MBA grad and medical service rep, was executed by Las Vegas police for the crime of shopping at Costco with his girlfriend. You see, Scott was in possession of a permitted concealed weapon, which permit was issued by the department that killed him.
This is part of a much larger problem in America - the militarization of the police. That militarization isn't helped by the fact that tens of thousands of departments use a version of IQ testing to deliberately hire people who are slightly BELOW average to average. Whether this is an outgrowth of affirmative action or a result of departments simply not wanting smart people looking at them from the inside, this is an intolerable practice. Then there's the fact that power corrupts, and the corollary fact that the police have far too much power these days.
I know this will anger many LEO's and .gov types, but the situation is completely out of hand. Cops have been getting away with executing people for years, aided and abetted by compliant coroners, prosecutors and judges. I would hope people's patriotism will eventually overrule their blind support of law enforcement and bring a halt to these murders.
The majority of police shootings I've studied are tainted, at best. Up till now, it has been all too easy to marginalize those they executed, and get away with the crimes. It's been obvious to anyone watching this that they would eventually screw up and kill a really good guy, and they did just that when they shot Erik Scott. He comes from an intact family. Father William Scott is an Honest to God test pilot and acclaimed aerospace journalist, with years at Aviation Week. This guy has contacts all over. Powerful contacts. He's giving them a chance to fess up to his son's murder, but sooner or later, his patience will run out.
Erik, from his bio, was an exemplary man. To reiterate: West Point grad. Honorable service. Graduate degree (Duke MBA) while working full time. The only blotch on his life was two failed marriages (not at all difficult to understand in a military man's life) and allegations of threats and violence, made during divorce proceedings by an ex, later dropped and subsequently sealed by the judge(!).
Sealed, that is, until the untouchables need to get away with his murder.
Lots of people carry guns. The ones who bother to get a permit are, by definition, the good guys. Costco apparently has a policy against carrying guns in their stores, which they don't post anywhere. (Dang. How many of us have carried into a Costco, not knowing our peril??) The Costco employee who set this mess in motion only saw Erik's gun because his jacket rode up when he bent down. He wasn't waving it around, and he wasn't acting erratically. He was SHOPPING with his girlfriend.
Did the employee ask him to leave? Don't know. We do know that Erik Scott informed the employee that he had a permit, that he was carrying legally, and that he then went back to his shopping. From there, the only thing we know for sure is that the employee called a manager.
Did the manager ask Erik to leave? Don't know. It's essentially a certainty that Scott told the manager he had a permit. We do know the manager called a security guard, who called the police. Now, I belong to Costco (did, anyway. Mine expired two weeks ago, and pending resolution of this case I have not renewed) and I know how they operate. Managers carry radios. That's how they communicate. I was in a Costco office once, too, talking with a manager about a special order. I saw where the security camera monitor sat, and it was not monitored by a live human being. In fact, there was a stack of paperwork on that chair. The security guard, wherever he was, has a radio too. It's pretty likely (obvious, actually) that the security guard who called 911 was at best acting on radio transmitted hearsay, and more likely was engaged in his own speculation (spelled L Y I N G) when he said Erik was acting erratically and that he might be on drugs. That's called false reporting, and when someone dies as a result, Costco is complicit in the death.
Is it possible that Erik Scott was asked to leave and refused? Yes. But we don't know, and Costco likely would have been trumpeting that long before now if it was true, as a CYA/PR measure. I'm guessing he wasn't asked to leave. Erik was a smart guy, and he was with his girlfriend. The only plausible response would have been for him to say "sure - I'll take my business elsewhere, and I'll leave just as soon as you refund my membership fee". That's exactly what I would have done.
Then there's the trigger happy cops. They screwed up big time on this one. They should have shot a Mexican or a black man, preferably one with a long criminal history. (And simmer down. I'm being cynical, not racist.) Anyway, how do you explain shooting a guy like Erik?
The answer is you don't explain it. You CAN'T explain it. You just don't kill West Point grads for shopping at Costco with their girlfriends. And here's where this turns truly disgusting. The cops are trying to smear Erik Scott in order to get away with it. They have managed to unseal the allegations made by his ex, and are trying to make hay of the fact that he was on painkillers, implying addiction, but conveniently ignoring the back injuries he sustained jumping out of military aircraft in service of his country.
A smart crime family, one that has gotten away with murder hundreds of times, takes their lumps when they finally get caught. Cops, though, aren't anywhere near that smart. They're untouchable, so they're smearing an outstanding man instead of fessing up. A man they killed in cold blood, entirely without cause. And, they've had plenty of time to figure out who the father is, and that he's not a man to trifle with. Yet on they go, digging their own grave...
The inquest, long delayed, will supposedly be broadcast live for the next three days on mynews3.com starting at 10 AM PST tomorrow - and it's a kangaroo court if there ever was one. The family and their counsel are not allowed to cross examine anyone, and only evidence deemed acceptable by the County marsupials will be allowed.
This isn't over, and I predict it will blow up big time. (Sure hope so.) Conservatives, who usually rationalize police violence because they support "law and order" will have a tough time swallowing this one. A really tough time. A lot of us are already choking, and the word is still spreading. And conservatives are the support base of law enforcement, at least as far as the public is concerned. Because of who the victim was, and who his father is, this case has the potential to blow the lid off this sordid aspect of police corruption nationwide, and I hope and pray it does. Killings by the police shouldn't be routinely swept under the rug in a free society, no matter what kind of people they kill. It's gone on long enough.
ETA: Eric Scott's father, William Scott, has a blog going about this. Here.