Justice Watch: Another Teen Killed by Police; California Again Pushes against the Death Penalty

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In what bears some resemblance to the Tamir Rice shooting, this time in Columbus, Ohio, an Ohio cop has shot and killed an 8th grader, identified as Tyre King.  The teen was shot “multiple times” by Columbus police officer Bryan Mason Wednesday night after he allegedly pulled what turned out to be a BB gun out of his waistband.

According to the Columbus Dispatch, the police were initially called to investigate an armed robbery.  They teen ran and was shot.  Witnesses said the boy’s gun looked real.  The chief described the BB gun as “practically identical” to the officer’s gun.

The Dispatch notes, “The shooting had Mayor Andrew J. Ginther and Police Chief Kim Jacobs pleading for patience and calm Thursday in the wake of the shooting death of 13-year-old Tyre King, a suspect in a robbery.”

They add, “Police said King had removed a gun from his waistband when Mason, who was chasing him, fired. It’s unclear whether the teen pointed what turned out to be a BB gun at anyone or even raised it.”

“We ought to be shocked and angry as a community,” said Mayor Ginther, who became emotional during a news conference at City Hall on Thursday morning. “In the safest big city in America, we have a 13-year-old dead in our city. That is unacceptable.”

“At 7:42 p.m., police responded to a 911 call saying that a man who lived near Franklin Park had been robbed of $10 by armed teens who had then fled in a black car. The victim also was on the phone call and described one of the suspects as carrying a Ruger pistol.”

Tyre King and his 19-year-old friend Demetrius Braxton, were part of the group that robbed someone.

“The cops said to get down,” Mr. Braxton said. “We got down, but my friend got up and ran … (and) when he ran, the cops shot him.”

“There‘s something wrong with this country,” the mayor said during the press conference.


dp-imageFamily of Innocent Man Executed in Texas and CA Death Row Exoneree Warn Voters About Prop 66

Family members of Cameron Todd Willingham, an innocent man who was executed in Texas in 2004 for a crime he didn’t commit, will travel to California this week to warn voters about the unintended consequence of Proposition 66.

Legal experts say that Proposition 66 will increase California’s risk of executing an innocent person by removing important legal safeguards and imposing unrealistic timelines in death penalty cases – making California laws more like those in Texas.

Experts warn that Texas has executed at least two innocent men. The Willingham family will be joined by Barry Scheck, the director of the Innocence Project, and Ernest “Shujaa” Graham, who was wrongfully convicted and sentenced to death in California. Graham was eventually acquitted after spending six years on death row for a crime he didn’t commit.

To view the ad, click here: http://nooncaprop66.org/willingham-family-no-on-66/

“Texas executed my son for a crime he didn’t commit even though new evidence proved that he was innocent,” said Eugenia Willingham. “Flawed laws in Texas that make it difficult to introduce new evidence of innocence are responsible for my son’s death, and now California is poised to make the same mistake. Voters need to know that innocent people will be executed if Proposition 66 passes.”

“There is no doubt in my mind that Prop 66 will increase California’s risk of executing an innocent person,” said Barry Scheck on behalf of the Innocence Project.

Prop. 66 is one of two bills on the death penalty.  One would end the death penalty in California, while another, Prop. 66, intends to speed it up.

Opponents of Prop. 66 argue that the “very reform intended to ‘speed up’ California’s death penalty over the last thirty years has had the exact opposite effect, while increasing costs to taxpayers. Prop 66 is no different. It proposes changes that will make the system more expensive, complicated, bureaucratic, and slow. If enacted, implementing Prop 66 would cost California taxpayers tens of millions of dollars per year just to pay for new layers of government bureaucracy and court staff. Prop 66 also allows the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to build new death row facilities anywhere in the state, which would cost taxpayers unknown millions.”

They add, “The Proposed Initiative requires the appointment of literally hundreds of attorneys and legal staff to implement. That is because California currently has an enormous backlog of death penalty cases awaiting appointment of counsel.”

As of August 2, 2016:

  • 46 inmates are awaiting appointment of both an appellate attorney and a habeas corpus attorney
  • 310 inmates have been appointed an appellate attorney, but are still awaiting appointment of a habeas corpus attorney

Totals

  • = 356 attorneys are needed for habeas corpus petitions (46+310=356)
  • = 48 appellate attorneys needed for the direct appeal
  • = 402 defense attorneys needed just in cases now pending

—David M. Greenwald reporting

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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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40 thoughts on “Justice Watch: Another Teen Killed by Police; California Again Pushes against the Death Penalty”

  1. Biddlin

    There have been three police killings since this one. Joseph Allen Schlosser was the 821st victim of police. The 69 year old, white, veteran was contemplating suicide, the police arrived just in time to spare him the decision. Our tax dollars at work.

    1. South of Davis

      Biddlin wrote:

      > There have been three police killings since this one.

      I bet they were all white guys.  The media (including David) seems to only care when the cops shoot black guys…

        1. South of Davis

          Biddlin wrote:

          > I got this information and almost all other on

          > killings by police from local news media.

          True the “local” news media will report a white guy getting shot but when a black guy gets shot by a white guy it becomes a “national” (and sometimes even “international”) story.  The “national” media pretty much ignores black on white crime (with some exceptions like OJ) and black on black crime and goes wall to wall coverage for white on black crime (or white-Hispanic on black crime).

          P.S. The “international” press is still covering the white-hispanic on black shooting of  Trayvon Martin shooting YEARS later:

          https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/1557711/george-zimmerman-punched-in-the-face-in-restaurant-for-boasting-about-killing-trayvon-martin-in-infamous-shooting-in-2012/

      1. Davis Progressive

        south of davis illustrates that some people really do not understand the issue.  the response is always (1) more white people get killed by police than blacks – then the statistical problem is explained.  (2) blacks commit higher amounts of crime – but of course the issue is the illegitimate use of force rather than the justified use of force.  (3) they only look at blacks – the problem there is that race creates another element of the problem – it’s not just police misconduct (a problem) it’s that police are systematically more likely to use force on blacks than whites.  (4) there is the comparison of black on black crime to police use of force ignoring the color authority problem.  and finally there is misunderstanding of black lives matter believing it means exclusively black lives matter rather than black lives matter too.  people like south of davis simply do not understand the issue.

        1. Davis Progressive

          the issue is that there are other ways to handle situations other than shooting a guy and i’m tired of police chiefs defending police before the full investigation is complete.  if the guy is running away from police, there’s no reason to shoot him.  new use of force guidelines speak to this.

        2. Sam

          I think you should mail that comment to police officer Kyle Carrol. I am sure he is able to get mail at the hospital where he is currently recovering from a gunshot wound he sustained while chasing a suspect last weekend.

          Keep blaming the police for trying not to get killed at work. That is a tough stance from someone that lives in a city with a very low violent crime rate.

        3. South of Davis

          DP wrote:

          > (1) more white people get killed by police than

          > blacks – then the statistical problem is explained.

          Then we remind you that while blacks are a lower percentage of the population they attack (and actually kill) cops at a higher rate than whites (and asians).

          > (2) blacks commit higher amounts of crime –

          > but of course the issue is the illegitimate use

          > of force rather than the justified use of force.

          Do you think it is ever “justified” to use force against people of color (even after they have attacked and/or killed other cops)?

          >(3) they only look at blacks – the problem there is

          > that race creates another element of the problem –

          Can you name a single white guy killed by the cops who the NATIONAL media reported on (most people walking down the street can name a half dozen black guys)?

          > (4) there is the comparison of black on black

          > crime to police use of force ignoring the color

          > authority problem.

          I admit that there is a “color of authority” problem and a lot more cops need to be fired and even put in jail, but you have to admit that the most violent high crime areas in America happen to be black areas and if you are a cop working in an area (like the black parts of Chicago) where THOUSANDS of black people have shot other black people (killing HUNDREDS of them) just THIS YEAR there is a higher chance for an officer involved shooting than here in Davis (or other mostly white and asian) neighborhood where few people get shot.

        4. Davis Progressive

          the police have a critical job, sam, in a democratic society but they have to put the lives of the public over their own or they can’t do it.  they can’t shoot someone just because they might get shot at.  i know you won’t agree but the new use of force guidelines will start making this clear.

        5. Sam

          I agree that they have a critical job and I agree that they put their lives in danger. Where we disagree is their right to shoot someone that is trying to harm them. People need to take responsibility for their actions and stop blaming others for their bad decisions. This kid went out with his friends and committed armed robbery. He then ran from the police and he pulled out a gun. He is the one responsible for the situation that he alone created and he is the one that should suffer the consequences.

  2. South of Davis

    David wrote:

    > Tyre King and his 19-year-old friend Demetrius Braxton,

    > were part of the group that robbed someone.

    I always tell my kids when you are using a toy gun that looks that real to rob people make sure not to point it at the cops (or anyone else with a real gun)…

    P.S. Any idea why the police chief is dressed like a yacht club commodore?

    1. hpierce

      You really think it was about the $10, or might have been another factor?  I’m pretty sure that “in the heat of the moment” that those involved had no clue, nor consideration of the financial aspects.

      But, I appear to have less of a clue what “they were thinking” than you apparently do… yeah, they killed him over the $10…

      And, I am certainly NOT saying that this was “justified”…

      1. Tia Will

        hpierce

        And, I am certainly NOT saying that this was “justified””

        Then why the diatribe since I did not say that nothing else was involved ? You made that up and then upbraid me for what I did not say. That was the outcome. Maybe it might have been a good idea to get a little more information before using lethal force.

        1. Barack Palin

          Your statement was “And for the flip side, what we have in fact is a 13 year old dead over $10.00. Sound about right?”

          No that wasn’t about right.  You left out that the 13 year old had just robbed a victim and  it was reported that the assailants were armed with a Ruger pistol which was pulled out during the chase.

        2. Barack Palin

          What looked like a Ruger.  The problem lies that the 13 year old robbed someone with a BB gun that looked like a Ruger pistol that was reported as such and pulled it out when he ran from the police.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            Your view seems to be that you’re alright with a 13 year kid being killed under the circumstances. My view is that we ought to see if there is a way to have avoided shooting a kid under those circumstances. Running from the police does not justify lethal forth under most use of force protocols.

        3. Barack Palin

          He wasn’t just running from police, he pulled out what what looked like and was reported to be a Ruger pistol.  It’s easy for you to Monday morning quarterback when you know after the fact that it was a BB gun.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            Exactly, so let’s not figure out if there’s a better way to avoid the loss of life? I love the Monday morning quarterbacking analogy, what do you think a football coach does after the game? He figures out what went wrong and how to improve upon the last game. But somehow in real life and death matters, we can’t do that. The result is unacceptable – a 13 year old is dead – now we have to figure out how we can make it so that the next 13 year old who does something stupid doesn’t have to die.

        4. Barack Palin

          Yes but the coach doesn’t automatically blame the quarterback (police in your case) everytime and looks at what other players may have done wrong too.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            I haven’t automatically blamed the cop here either, but you seem to be acceptable with the outcome.

      1. Eric Gelber

        Or outlaw the manufacture and sale of toy guns and BB guns that resemble real weapons and serve as gateway devices that help feed the nation’s destructive addiction to firearms. Or, short of a ban, perhaps the toy industry can show some of the same common sense self-regulation the candy industry did with candy cigarettes.

        1. quielo

          If somebody pulls something that looks a lot like a gun on me I am giving them the benefit of the doubt and treat it like a real gun. Don’t see why the cops would be different.

        2. Sam

          Yeah, we need more laws to protect the stupid. You can’t expect people to make good decisions on their own, those decisions should be made for them by other people. Maybe we can add a class in elementary school to teach children when you are out robbing people not to point realistic looking guns at the cops when they are chasing you otherwise a member of “America’s most deadly street gang” is going to shoot you.

        3. South of Davis

          Eric wrote:

          > Or outlaw the manufacture and sale of toy guns

          > and BB guns that resemble real weapons 

          Would you also outlaw wood and paint?(since you can carve a gun out of wood and paint it black):

          http://www.everydaynodaysoff.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Wood-1911-Handgun.jpg

          > perhaps the toy industry can show some of the

          > same common sense self-regulation the candy

          > industry did with candy cigarettes.

          I loved candy cigarettes as a kid (the best ones had paper over the gum with a little power that looked like smoke when you blew on them) and every kid I grew up with also liked them (we used to keep the packs in our shirt sleeves).  Despite the fact that all my friends and relatives had candy cigarettes as kids not a single one of us ever became cigarette smokers.  I’m certain that candy cigarettes won’t cause my kids to start smoking (and that black toy guns won’t cause them to start robbing people)…

           

      1. hpierce

        Will repeat the essence of a previous comment I made… am no fan of the K, but “taking a knee” is common in sports, particularly youth sports, to listen to coach, or respect a player who has gone down for an “injury”… if the K meant to recognize an “injury”, rather than “dissing” the US, I get it… we need to identify ‘injuries’… and act to minimize/heal those, to the extent they exist… and respect folk (even if we disagree on “cause”) who show signs of injury…

        1. Barack Palin

          What are you talking about?  Everyone knows what Kaep means by his sitting and kneeling during the anthem. Maybe you’re attempting to be facetious and I’m missing it?

  3. Frankly

    [13 year old] Tyre King and his 19-year-old friend Demetrius Braxton, were part of the group that robbed someone.

    “There‘s something wrong with this country,” the mayor said during the press conference.

    The Mayor is correct.  More than one thing.  Many things.  One is the glossing over of the first point.

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