Marshal shoots passenger Miami airport

Discussion in 'The Study' started by Ping898, Dec 7, 2005.

  1. arnisador

    arnisador Sr. Grandmaster

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2001
    Messages:
    44,560
    Likes Received:
    435
    Trophy Points:
    193
    Location:
    Terre Haute, IN
    You know the old story about how if they search your car on the Peace Bridge they can take it totally apart and then leave it like that, right? I heard it often in Buffalo. It had always happened to a friend's friend. That's international--but a flight to Miami may well have been the same.

    I don't know how it works!
     
  2. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2003
    Messages:
    7,766
    Likes Received:
    408
    Trophy Points:
    208
    Taking something apart is different from damaging it.
     
  3. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Messages:
    30,187
    Likes Received:
    427
    Trophy Points:
    208
    Location:
    Cromwell,CT
    I'm wondering why the wife allowed him to go without his medication?

    I did catch something last night on CNN, unfortunately, I didn't completely hear what they were talking about, but it was along the lines of discussing a less lethal approach, and would he have still been able to activate the bomb, if there was one.

    My guess is, with the Taser, you're limited as to how many people you can deal with, whereas with the gun, its easier to get off more rapid shots. For example, take 9/11. With multiple terrorists on board, would the Taser have been as effective as if there was an armed Marshal on board?

    Mike
     
  4. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2003
    Messages:
    7,766
    Likes Received:
    408
    Trophy Points:
    208
  5. MJS

    MJS Administrator Staff Member

    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Messages:
    30,187
    Likes Received:
    427
    Trophy Points:
    208
    Location:
    Cromwell,CT
    Thank God Tony was interviewed to give some expert advice, because Mary and Katie don't have a clue!!! Here you have Mary saying that she did not hear anything about a bomb. Ok, so now you're going to put some doubt into peoples mind as to if he had a bomb or not. Then she goes on to tell other passengers that there are Marshals on board. Ok, and how does she know that the person she is sitting next to isnt a terrorist??

    Then we have Katie asking what about shooting the knee??? Give me a break!! I'd like to see her shoot a moving target, under extreme stress, in the knee!!

    Even if hitting the knee was a possibility, which its highly unlikely, whats to say that that would stop him from setting off the bomb?

    Mike
     
  6. Mark L

    Mark L Brown Belt

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2002
    Messages:
    444
    Likes Received:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Mass.
    Would you bet your life, and a 100 or so others, on it? Threatening with a bomb on an airplane, followed up by an agressive move towards the implied threat, justifies the action taken, no excuses. A third party saying anything doesn't matter, they could just as easily be an accomplice, running interference on the marshall.

    If you look around on the web you can readily find video of LEOs voluntarily subjecting themselves to taser shots, often multiple shots. They quite clearly cause extreme discomfort, but also quite clearly don't always render the victim immediately incapacitated. You might argue that neither do gunshots, but I'd bet on a couple of ounces of lead through the heart over 50,000 volts across a bit of skin.

    I hope the feds make a thourough investigation of the incident, then pin a great big medal on the marshalls' chest. I'm sorry the guy is dead, but his death was the direct result of his actions, his illness. Responsibility's a *****, sometimes. I'm also sorry the marshall has to carry the experience with him for the rest of his life, but I am grateful that he fullfilled his responsibilty.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. JAMJTX

    JAMJTX Blue Belt

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Messages:
    211
    Likes Received:
    13
    Trophy Points:
    18
    If the Marshal did not shoot him and a bomb went off, those same people whining about the shooting would be whining that he should have shot him before the bomb went off.
    Law Enforcement Officers can never win with liberals and neither can America. It's always, liberal sgoob America/Law bad.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  8. sgtmac_46

    sgtmac_46 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,751
    Likes Received:
    187
    Trophy Points:
    173
    Most definitely. The Air Marshall made the right decision, if everything I hear is accurate. If someone says they have a bomb, and you're surrounded by people, you error in the side of the innocent by-standers.

    This guy may have been bi-polar, crazy, or suicidal (of course, no one who's bi-polar, crazy or suicidal would carry a bomb?!), but all that is irrelavent. All that is, in essence, his own problem. The Air Marshall has to protect everyone else, and he did. Whether or not the man had a bomb, this is a clear cut case of suicide.

    What's more, to the suggestion about "Tasering" the gentleman, I'm a certified Taser instructor, and have been for 5 years. I teach every officer that the Taser is not a substitute for lethal force. It can help prevent the need for lethal force in certain situations, but at the moment of truth, when a lethal threat is imminent (say, when someone is reaching for a bomb) it is NOT the option of choice.

    The Taser, being an electronic device with a CO2 charged dart system, is far less reliable and with a much more limitated range (21 feet) than a firearm. In other words, consider a Taser as reliable as a computer or a cellphone. There are simply too many variables that can fail with a Taser...The batteries can be dead, the cartridge can fail, the Taser itself can malfunction, the darts may penetrate, it may not stop the subject, etc.

    A firearm, on the other hand, is relatively simple and straight forward. So, at the moment of truth, it's what you rely on. Had the man not been near his bags, and was running toward them, a Taser might be the choice. If his hand is moving toward a bag in reach, the firearm is the only reasonable option.

    Would you want the lives of your family and friends dependent on a cellphone dialing out on the first try? I didn't think so.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. sgtmac_46

    sgtmac_46 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,751
    Likes Received:
    187
    Trophy Points:
    173
    If someone claims to have a bomb, are we to assume they are 'kidding'? Are we to only shoot if they are 'sane'? Is the presumption being that only a sane person would carry a bomb on a plane? Is the assumption that mentally ill equates to harmless? Or are we just saying that, even if they ARE a threat, being mentally ill makes them immune to considerations of lethal force in self-defense and defense of others?

    It seems that the second guessing of the Air Marshall's is a knee jerk emotional reaction to the knowledge that he did not, in fact, have a bomb as he had stated. Those that are second guessing are wanting to judge the Air Marshalls' behavior based on knowledge only knowable AFTER the incident (as is typically the case involving police related incidents).

    The only objective criteria is what the Air Marshall knew at the time of the shooting, and what a reasonable, trained Air Marshall would surmise about the best course of action. I think they met that standard from everything i've heard.
     
  10. shesulsa

    shesulsa Columbia Martial Arts Academy

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    May 27, 2004
    Messages:
    27,172
    Likes Received:
    460
    Trophy Points:
    193
    Location:
    Not BC, Not DC
    See, after arguing on the taser threads and reading comments like, "Would you rather the patient have been shot? No. That's why he was tased," the continued arguing for lethal force just leaves me cold.
     
  11. sgtmac_46

    sgtmac_46 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,751
    Likes Received:
    187
    Trophy Points:
    173
    .....
     
  12. sgtmac_46

    sgtmac_46 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,751
    Likes Received:
    187
    Trophy Points:
    173
    It leaves you cold because you really don't understand the dynamics of this type of situation. You also don't understand the kind of situation in which the Taser is useful as opposed to a situation in which it is not.

    I think I covered why the Taser is not a magic bullet. I teach officers that a Taser is not a substitute for lethal force, HOWEVER, it serves to end incidents before lethal force is necessary. For example, a man says he's going in to his house to get a gun when the police show up. The Taser can prevent him from reentering the house, and avert a lethal force response.

    The Taser, however, is not meant to be used when the man is pointing a gun at you. It also is not a substitute for lethal force when the guy is reaching INTO the bag to detonate a bomb. These are situations in which there is no substitute for lethal force. What's more, when it comes to bombs, a device that sends out an electrical charge is an asinine choice. Most explosives are electically detonated. An electrical charge might just set off the bomb. That's why you don't Taser someone who has doused themselves with gasoline and you don't Taser someone who is holding a bomb.

    So, again, knowing what the Taser WILL and WON'T do is kind of important. It had no real role in this situation. If the man had had a knife, and the officers had lethal force cover, the Taser might have been a useful tool. Not in this circumstance.

    So, rather than me explain why these Air Marshall's did the right thing, why doesn't someone explain to me, in detail, how they did the wrong thing and what they, themselves, would have done differently, in the same situation, knowing only what the Air Marshall's knew at the time they made the decision (that means you don't get the benefit of 'hindsight').

    I'll make the scenario easy. A man says he has a bomb in his bag. You point your gun and tell him to lay face down on the ground. You are surrounded by innocent bystanders. He then reaches in to his bag. What do you do...What do you do? This has been played out before, and the bag isn't always empty. You make the call.

    I'll give you a hint...He knows more about what's in his bag than you do. I'd take him at his word.

    Those who picked "A: I'd eliminate the threat with the least risk to innocent bystanders as quickly as possible", move to the head of the class.
     
  13. Jonathan Randall

    Jonathan Randall Senior Master

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,981
    Likes Received:
    31
    Trophy Points:
    158
    So do I! What a world that was lost on September 11, 2001.

    This appears to be an unmitigated tragedy. I am familiar with Bipolar Disorder and I have nothing but sympathy for the family of the man killed as well as the Marshall who acted in the only way possible under the circumstances.
     
  14. sgtmac_46

    sgtmac_46 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,751
    Likes Received:
    187
    Trophy Points:
    173
    Yeah, remember when you could yell "I have a bomb!" on a crowded airliner without repercussions. Oh how the world has changed.

    Honestly, i'm not so sure that pre-9/11, had you yelled "I have a bomb in my bag!" and then stuck your hand in it in front of armed men, you'd have walked away. The only reason you might have gotten away from it pre-9/11, is that there would have been no law enforcement lurking around to stop you.

    That this is a direct result of 9/11 is only true in the number of Air Marshalls available. The response, however, isn't new at all. There were bombs WAY before 9/11, and people insane enough to use them. A madman with a bomb is a scenario played out in airports and airplanes for decades.

    This is just a matter of elemental stupidity on the part of this gentleman (or if we want to write it off as mental illness, so be it).

    This is a very sad situation, but I look at the law enforcement response as being like a mechanism. He set it in motion, and it ended up the only way it could have. It would have been no different if he had run out on to the tarmac and gotten struck by a plane, the fault was strictly his own.

    The fact that this may have been a result of mental illness in no way causes the fault to suddenly shift to someone else.
     
  15. shesulsa

    shesulsa Columbia Martial Arts Academy

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    • LifeTime Supporting Member
    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    May 27, 2004
    Messages:
    27,172
    Likes Received:
    460
    Trophy Points:
    193
    Location:
    Not BC, Not DC
    sgtmac, I do understand the gravity of the situation, I DO understand when tasers vs guns are used. My intent here is to keep you thinking. I'll never stop saying that when these kinds of situations become black and white, then you've stopped thinking.

    If an LEO refuses to keep thinking and re-evaluating situations played out such as this one with a clear head, even post-resolution, then you've stopped thinking as a cop. That's a dangerous point in an officer's career.

    And you haven't asked what I would have done in the situation. I think the answer would surprise you.
     
  16. sgtmac_46

    sgtmac_46 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,751
    Likes Received:
    187
    Trophy Points:
    173
    That I fully understand the tools and tactics and limits of those tools and tactics is illustrative of the extent to which I 'think' about these situations. The time to think about them is not WHEN the decision is in front of you, if you wait until then you've already lost. That's why law enforcement officers train and train, and play the 'what-if'/'if-then' game

    You don't have time for an ethical, moral and legal debate, complete with dissenting points of view, in the 2.4 seconds between when you point the gun at the potential bomber and tell him to lay face down on the ground, and he shoves his hand in to his backpack. You also don't have time to convene a committee.

    And I think I did ask you what you would do in the same situation.

    You've got my undivided attention.
     
  17. Jonathan Randall

    Jonathan Randall Senior Master

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,981
    Likes Received:
    31
    Trophy Points:
    158
    This is apparently a "no fault" situation. If you mean by fault, blame, then I think that you misunderstand the nature of Bipolar Disorder. This poor, afflicted man, if the reports are correct, truly did not act of his own will. The disorder robs a person of their will, their opportunities and their future. My sympathies are with BOTH the officer, who by all credible reports acted in the only way possible, and the victim of this terrible disease that robs the individual of both their judgement and will.

    Despite the multitude of individuals who have tried an insanity defense to escape the consequences of their actions, there is such a thing as mental illness. It is real and its victims suffer beyond the imagining of those not so afflicted. As my Abnormal Psychology professor used to remind us; "... but for the grace of God, there go I".
     
  18. sgtmac_46

    sgtmac_46 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,751
    Likes Received:
    187
    Trophy Points:
    173
    When I use the word 'fault' I use it in the sense of the individual with the responsibility for creating the situation. I use it in the legal sense of who is responsible for setting the mechanism of this tragedy in motion. That rests solely on the individual who created this situation. I don't mean it in the sense of blame, as in 'blame the dead guy', but only in the sense of he who is responsible for what has been created. This guy set the mechanisms for his own death in to play.

    Yes, and this would be no different than if he had wandered in to traffic. That he is dead is a tragedy...but it is one of his own making. That he was plagued by mental illness is unfortunate, but that it was his behavior that resulted in his own death is without question. None of us will ever know what was going on in his mind, but lets never make the mistake of believing that the consequences of this situation rested on anyone's shoulders but his.

    I stress this because there seems to be a tendency when dealing with mental illness issues that, because we have pushed 'it's not their fault' so much, people automatically assume that, because it isn't THEIR fault, it must be someone elses' fault, in this case the Air Marshalls' fault.

    I know you aren't making that point, but others have attempted to, including a couple of Mental Illness advocacy groups. The point they're making, apparently, being 'if you're mentally ill, then the rules suddenly change'. As if only mentally healthy people blow up airplanes or only mentally healthy people are dangerous.

    It doesn't seem reasonable to create a circumstance where you have to perceive a threat AND decide the person isn't mentally ill in order to defend yourselves or others. So, when I say 'fault' I mean the person that bears primary responsibility. If you do something that is YOUR fault, you can't blame others for the consequences.

    If we want to blame mental illness, then we are forced to say he died as a result of his mental illness. Whatever drove him to commit this action is what is responsible for his death.
     
  19. MartialIntent

    MartialIntent Black Belt

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2005
    Messages:
    516
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    UK
    I'm all for debating these type of situations but I think a few of the posts here are completely missing the bigger picture... I mean, would we all be so quick to give this guy the benefit of the doubt were we standing in the terminal waving au revoir to one of our family about to board the same flight as him? I wonder.

    I think this was a courageous decision taken by the marshall. I think he should be applauded not harangued by a media whose only mandate is to serve out ever more sanguinary and inane stories to satiate advertising remits... sorry.

    This guy had a mental handicap - how the situation developed - or would have done in different circumstances - is obviously the matter we and others are debating. He is entitled to the same rights as the rest of us. He may have a family left behind too. But by the same token, were I to get myself drunk or stoned and wander onto the aircraft mouthing off, acting suspiciously, maybe abusive and shouting that I had a bomb in my bag, would our opinion of the marshall shooting me be different from the mentally handicapped guy? I daresay.

    The marshall's split-second decision was this: shoot and wound or kill a person who may be innocent or do not shoot and watch 100 innocent passengers [including himself] die.

    That's a helluva decision to be made by the marshall. Citizens the world over delegate authority to our varied LEOs. I say quit sitting there in your armchair whining and let them do their job - or get out there and do it yourself if you think you can do better! But I for one would be reassured to have this kind of protection for myself and my family.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  20. 7starmantis

    7starmantis Grandmaster

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    Messages:
    5,493
    Likes Received:
    50
    Trophy Points:
    158
    Location:
    East Texas
    I dont think any stoned person would be shouting and getting irate. Everything would be cool, man.

    :ultracool

    7sm123
     

Share This Page