LA Times; details on that shootout in LA (UPDATED)

| February 10, 2013 | 70 Comments

Shoot first

The LA Times roots out some of the details of the two officers who opened fire on a pair of women who happened to be delivering newspapers while the LAPD was looking for Chris Dorner, who had shot two police officers, killing one, the other morning. Witnesses say that the police didn’t shout a warning and that bullets were flying wildly through the neighborhood;

As the vehicle approached the house, officers opened fire, unloading a barrage of bullets into the back of the truck. When the shooting stopped, they quickly realized their mistake. The truck was not a Nissan Titan, but a Toyota Tacoma. The color wasn’t gray, but aqua blue. And it wasn’t Dorner inside the truck, but a woman and her mother delivering copies of the Los Angeles Times.

[…]

Law enforcement sources told The Times that at least seven officers opened fire. On Friday, the street was pockmarked with bullet holes in cars, trees, garage doors and roofs. Residents said they wanted to know what happened.

[…]

Kathy Merkosky, 53, was outside her stucco home pointing out the six bullet holes in the bumper and grill of her silver Acura MD-X. She knew her truck was damaged when she spotted it on television and “saw fluid flowing into the street.”

Her Ford Focus was hit as well — a bullet shattered the windshield and another flattened a front tire.

[…]

Goo said he could hear the bullets hitting the front door and feared they were coming through the house. He said he called 911 for the police, but was notified that they were already there.

See, I thought there were only two officers involved. In that case, I figured they had a couple of nuts in uniform, but now that I hear that there were at least seven, well, that tells me that there’s a training problem in the LAPD system. Out of seven, one might have said out loud that they were a bit out of control and suggested to the others a different course of action – but apparently that didn’t happen.

Thanks to Old Trooper for the link.

UPDATE: KD8NOA sends us a link to a second incident much like this one – wrong make & model and color of the truck and a white guy about 100 lbs. lighter than Dorner;

Seconds later, Perdue’s attorney said, a Torrance police cruiser slammed into his pickup and officers opened fire; none of the bullets struck Perdue.

His pickup, police later explained, matched the description of the one belonging to Christopher Jordan Dorner….

Yeah, I’d get out of the LA until this over. Cops haven’t killed anyone yet, but not from a lack of trying.

Category: Who knows

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  1. Bam Bam says:

    A perfect example why emotional responses are typically the wrong ones.

  2. Old Trooper says:

    The description in the article makes me think of the scene at the roach coach in Naked Gun, where one cop fires a round and the rest just start unloading in the general direction without thought or target identification. That was a comedy movie and, unfortunately, this is reality. Who says art doesn’t imitate life?

  3. Jumpmaster says:

    Jonn, you can’t call it a shootout if only one side is shooting. I support the brave LEOs out on patrol all across our country but this incident is a major screwup by the LAPD. They are damn lucky that all of those stray bullets did not cause even more collateral damage. Sorry, but some heads need to roll over this.

  4. AW1Ed says:

    That’s some mighty fine police work, Lou.
    UFB.

  5. Ex-PH2 says:

    Over the 30 years that I lived in the city of Chicago, I lost track of how many children were died of bullet wounds in their own homes — in their own beds — because street gangs went through their neighborhoods with guns a-blazing, shooting at houses. The bullets went right through the walls of those houses.

    Seven cops unload on a truck without properly identifying it. Shot up the whole neigborhood.

    I see no difference between these LAPD thug cops and the Latin Kings or the El Rukns, nor would it surprise me to see it happen in Chicago, the way things are going.

  6. B Woodman says:

    I’d read that the ladies had already gotten a lawyer (ot it got them), and were going after the apparently deep pockets of the LAPD.
    #1- I hope the man has done the same.
    #2-I hope the LAPD has that deep of pockets. No IOU vouchers allowed!

  7. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    I wonder if unjustified police shootings are included in the yearly shooting stats. If so, it’s no wonder the numbers are so high.

  8. Doc says:

    Man, I think this is really illustrating we have a huge LEO problem in this country. In my opinion there shouldn’t be an special protections for police if they commit crimes wearing a badge. The 7 cops that shot up that truck should all be charged with attempted murder. Why aren’t our police put under the same scrutiny as our servicemembers each time they pull that trigger? Why are we harder on service members engaging in warfare against enemy combatants than we are on the police who are also supposed to protect the American people?

  9. B Woodman says:

    Got distracted and corgot to add my final thought:
    Of all the many many things I learned from Uncle Sam Aint Released Me Yet, this was a biggie.
    You want to control people’s behaviour? Hit ‘em in two places, their TIME and their PAYCHECK.

  10. B Woodman says:

    Thumbs-for-fingers:
    Corgot=> forgot

  11. Bubblehead Ray says:

    I realize these officers are highly trained professionals. I’m just not sure which proffesion they were trained in. It’s become much more dangerous to drive a pickup truck in Southern California. So far they have shot up 2 trucks… neither of which was the right make, model, or color, and wounded and injured two women and a skinny white guy,( while they’re looking for a guy that looks like L. L. Cool J. ) What exactly are they highly trained in?? From the reports on the all of the collateral damage they managed to inflict in the first shooting, marksmanship was NOT high up on the curriculum, but they all aced the “Three Stooges Techniques in Modern Police Work” class.

    Good thing these guys are the only ones “Professional” enough to carry weapons.

  12. MAJMike says:

    Hmmmm! I can understand the fear at being ambushed. I can understand the uncertainity when one approaches a vechile that may shelter an armed and hostile suspect. But, tell me why the Rules of Engagement for our troops in Afghanistan are tighter and more ruthlessly enforced than procedures used by the LAPD against the citizens that they are sworn to “Protect and Serve”.

    I’m just a dumbass former 11Bravo10, but really? Really? Someone ‘splain this to me!

  13. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    I can hear it now: “He shot so I shot and when the other officers saw us shooting they opened up.”

  14. pete says:

    i see a Rodney King sequel with this clusterfuc

  15. Ex-PH2 says:

    Is there any noise yet from the gun control squawkers?

    Should someone bring up how the police ganged up on Rodney King and nearly beat him to death?

    I don’t think cops should be allowed to have guns. :) They obviously aren’t able to control their emotions. :)

  16. At the least this is “Reckless Endangerment”, at the worst it is blatant “Improper selection of officers”. Either way, the public and its personal property are at risk.

  17. Ex-PH2 says:

    I forgot to include “they all have very, very BAD eyesight.”

  18. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    The funniest line in the LA Time article is the last one. Get this. One resident “said he called 911 for the police, but was notified that they were already there.” You betcha.

  19. Arby says:

    Officers Pete Malloy and Jim Reed would never have done this…

  20. Anonymous says:

    According to Fox, The LA police chief is reopening the investigation that resulted in Dorner’s firing. Bwhahahahahahahahahahahahaha.

  21. kp32 says:

    I complained about the grouping in a different post… I apologize. After reading this, I should have been congratulating the few officers who could actually hit the truck.

  22. A_Proud_Infidel says:

    LAPD= Limpdicked Asswipe Paranoid Dildoheads. So according to the bleeding heart liberals, we’re supposed to turn in our guns while singing “Kum-ba-yah” and trusting “heroes” like these losers posing as LEO’s, I’ve seen shopping mall “Rent-a -Fuzzes” with more discipline and restraint than these LAPD jokers, once again I thank GOD that I don’t live in Kalifornia! Some of the local LEO’s that I know here wonder what the LAPD puts in their coffee!

  23. A_Proud_Infidel says:

    P. S. Just who is their role model, Barney Fife on LSD and meth?

  24. Old Trooper says:

    This story is the perfect justification to argue that law enforcement should not be exempt from any gun control law that limits capacity, well in Kalifornia, anyway. Of course, NYPD isn’t any better, so they shouldn’t be exempt from the draconian law just put in place in NY, either.

  25. Brian says:

    If they’re going to confiscate guns from irresponsible gun owners in California, start with the LAPD. Maybe they should only be allowed to have 1 round that they keep in their shirt pocket.

  26. PFDRbrendan says:

    @ #12
    MAJMike, that is a very good question. To add on to it, why is PID so important for us Grunts on the ground to have in a combat zone, while in my own Country LEO’s can shoot all willy-nilly when they feel threatened?

    I understand that in the heat of the moment a snap decision has to be made but, why not apply some escalation of force before we flip the safeties off there, LAPD?

  27. After doing cop work for 32 years, I can tell you it often goes like this when they put out a BOL for wanted vehicle:
    “All units B.O.L. for a red SUV just used in a 211 PC (armed robbery) last seen 5 ago at—-”

    Most of us would wait for a further description on the red suv and a suspect description, but within minutes every red suv in the county would get stopped at gun point. Most were in places it would have been impossible for the suspect to get to in 5 minutes.

    Some of us were trained on a thing called “probable cause” and something they can’t train “common sense”.

  28. kp32 says:

    From the police apologist-

    “Nobody trains police officers to look for one of their own,” said Maria Haberfeld, a police training professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York. “I wouldn’t want to be in their shoes and I don’t think anybody else would.”

    From Chief Beck-
    “In the split seconds available to them,” the statement continued, “action was appropriate to intervene and stop the actions of the driver of that vehicle.”

    According to the police department, Perdue’s car was headed directly for one of their patrol vehicles and appeared not to be yielding. When the vehicles collided, Perdue’s air bag went off, blocking the view of the driver, and one officer fired three rounds.

    The Torrance police chief apologized to Perdue and offered him a rental car and payment for his medical expenses, the statement said.

    It’s obvious there is no intention of capturing Dorner. We should put these guys in charge of the Major Hasan trial, but get some professionals for the firing squad.

  29. Cacti35 says:

    As a 34 year veteran if law enforcment, I am appalled at such police conduct. Felony stop techniques have been in place for well over 30 years. It is pretty much an industry standard. I have watched televised pursuits by LAPD and CHP units. They always conducted felony stops where the vehicle occupants are removed from the vehicle safely. There can be no excuse for opening fire on a vehicle without first knowing that the occupant is a lethal threat and he does not have an innocent person in the vehicle. I counted at least 30 bullet holes in the wrong type of vehicle they were looking for. The women in that vehicle are going to be able to give uo their paper route for they are going to be millionaires real soon, and rightfully so! The yahoos that shot the vehicle up need to suffer some serious discipline which probably should be termination. They are a total embarassment to the professionals in this country!

  30. Common Sense says:

    It’s not just the women in the truck who will sue, it’s every single home and car owner whose property was shot up.

    What kind of supposed training do they have anyway? Wasn’t the truck a big enough target?

    Clearly, all those billions of rounds being bought up for police training would be put to better use by private citizens, most of whom seem to hit what they’re aiming at.

  31. kp32 says:

    http://spreadsheets.latimes.com/lapd-settlements/

    Legal payouts in LAPD lawsuits

    Since 2002, the city of Los Angeles has paid nearly 1,000 set­tle­ments and judge­ments to re­solve law­suits against the LAPD. The ma­jor­ity are in civil rights cases, but a sig­ni­fic­ant por­tion stem from traffic col­li­sions in­volving po­lice of­ficers. Be­low are all pay­outs made from the be­gin­ning of 2002 through Oct. 5, 2011

  32. Old Trooper says:

    @27: Even if you were to pull over every red SUV in the county, your training doesn’t tell you to unload every round of ammunition you have on every red SUV, before even ascertaining who is in the vehicle; does it? If it does, then we have the scariest police force in the world.

  33. FatCircles0311 says:

    Good luck for those citizens actually trying to collect on the IOU’s that will be awarded from any court ruling regarding the city. This story just gets worse and worse.

    7 police require multiple cars, so now I’m thinking this was intentional policy rather than simply some lone scared unit making a terrible stop and decision.

  34. streetsweeper says:

    After 40 some years experience of mess kit repairing, I can truly say there are some really piss poor shots and then there are some really piss poor shots. It is a really good thing so far for those women and the neighbors on that street that this crew from LAPD is comprised of really, really piss poor shots. Their conduct is deplorable, even I understand the mechanics of a felony stop but, these mofo’s?

    They need to get themselves in a new line of work and not in law enforcement, security or anything else that requires a sidearm and exposes the public to such stupidity. Because this one isn’t working out so well for ‘em. I understand JB Hunt and other major mega-carriers are hiring and training rookie truck drivers…

  35. Ex-PH2 says:

    I’ve seen rookie cops on the street in Chicago with older cops who have time on the job. The rookies were so wound up with excitement about being cops that they looked at everyone as someone about to commit a crime, even though nothing was going on.

    If the cops in any city are so terrified of criminals that they will shoot first and offer no warning or even attempt to properly identify people, but simply start shooting, then they should not be on the street, period, and they definitely should not have guns and bullets in their possession. I shudder to think what may happen if someone comes home with a load of groceries and a baby in the car and doesn’t see the police or just pulls into her own driveway.

    Right now, the cops are more dangerous than the gangs, in my view.

  36. Ex-PH2 says:

    I particularly liked this statement regarding the shootup of Mr. Perdue’s truck (victim of second mistaken shooting):

    “They don’t know where he is, and they’re going to be edgy and jumpy,” she said. “Don’t get in their way. They’re in a special state of consciousness right now, and they’re not used to being hunted.”

    A special state of consciousness? That’s a new name for being blinded by fear and having raging panic attacks. As for not used to being hunted – yeah, well, neither are the rest of us.

    Is there any noise at all from the anti-gun corner? I haven’t seen anything.

  37. PALADIN says:

    Seven thumb sucking turds, who by the looks of it can’t shoot for shit !

    Yes heads need to roll, and i hope these women get a nice fat settlement outts this.

  38. Anonymous says:

    “David Perdue was on his way to sneak in some surfing before work Thursday morning when police flagged him down. They asked who he was and where he was headed, then sent him on his way.

    Seconds later, Perdue’s attorney said, a Torrance police cruiser slammed into his pickup and officers opened fire; none of the bullets struck Perdue.”

    Added the first paragraph to the story. Guess a couple of cops did the right thing. Still maybe we should do away with cops and go back to the old days when citizens took turns protecting the community.

  39. YatYas says:

    @38:
    Didn’t notice was not logged on and wound up as anonymous.

  40. Poohbah, Lord High Everything Else says:

    Police advise all innocent civilians to evacuate Southern California immediately.

  41. MCPO NYC USN (Ret.) says:

    In cases when you do not have 100 % ID on the perp or enough to articulate your actions, it is better to be a good witness than a good shot!

  42. USMCE8Ret says:

    I’m wondering a couple of things?:

    Did even one of the LAPD officers attempt to positively ID the vehicle (make, model or LICENSE PLATE NUMBER? and

    Does the LAPD know that Dorner’s vehicle was found burned up in Big Bear? (If not, the citizens of LA should still use some caution). (sarc off)

  43. Anonymous says:

    LOS ANGELES (CNN) – Los Angeles put up a $1 million reward Sunday for the capture and conviction of Christopher Dorner, a renegade former police officer they say has killed three people in a self-proclaimed war on his old department.

    I’ve noticed that most news reports are leaving ‘conviction’ out of their report.

    It would be hard enough to capture, but to expect that a private citizen could keep him alive and get a conviction in LA…!?

    Methinks that no reward will ever be paid.

  44. Anonymous says:

    Since bribery of court officials is legal in California, perhaps a reward should be offered to any prosecutor who can successfully convict any of the rogue LAPD shooting innocent people as a result of their fear of the DORNER.

    http://articles.cnn.com/2010-05-24/justice/jailed.lawyer.richard.fine_1_superior-court-judges-los-angeles-county-contempt?_s=PM:CRIME

  45. YatYas says:

    Riverside PD released the name of the officer killed by Dorner and the news gave some information on him.

    “Officer Michael Crain was born in Anaheim, California to Stephen and Cindy Crain on April 9, 1978. He was the oldest of three children and had a brother, Jason, and sister, Leslie. He was raised in the Riverside area and graduated from Redlands High School in 1996.

    After high school, Mike attended Crafton Hills College in Yucaipa for a year prior to enlisting in the United States Marine Corps. He served two deployment tours in Kuwait as a rifleman in the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, 3rd Battalion 1st Marines. He was a squad leader, and was promoted to the rank of Sergeant. He was then stationed at Camp Pendleton in Oceanside, CA, where he taught Military Operations in Urban Terrain. During his military service, Mike was awarded the Good Conduct Medal, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon with 1 star, a Certificate of Commendation, and the Rifle Marksmanship Badge.

    After being honorably discharged from the Marine Corps, Mike joined the Riverside Police Department. He graduated from the Riverside Sheriff’s Academy, class #152, and was sworn in as a Riverside Police Officer on August 24, 2001.”

  46. ComancheDoc says:

    no wonder dickwad can’t measure up; look who he is competing against

  47. HMCS(FMF) Ret. says:

    #19 – Officers Pete Malloy and Jim Reed would never have done this…

    Sgt. Mac would have beaten their asses in the precinct parking lot if they did.

    LAPD has had a history of having itchy trigger fingers and batons that have a propensity to inflict bodily harm on the citizens of LA. Now with a former comrade on the run, who has a number of issues with the department, they are all on edge… and that’s not good for people living in SOCAL.

  48. B Woodman says:

    I’m surprised no one has already come with this:
    CALLING ALL KEYSTONE KOPS!!
    That is all – over and out.

  49. DaveO says:

    Hardly a wonder the LAPD is so despised.

  50. NHSparky says:

    My experience with LAPD and the various police agencies in the ‘burbs, particularly in the bedroom communities in LA/OC/SB counties, is that there are three types of people in LAPD–those who play politics, those who are too fucked up to work anywhere else, and those who are hanging around just long enough to where that “cush” (comparatively) job opens up in the burbs and they can get the fuck out of there.

    Seriously, I make fun of the “Keystone” cops we’ve got around here, but they’re far and away more professional and far LESS trigger-happy than the LAPD and surrounding departments.

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