Tuesday, January 28, 2014

That Word You Keep Using...

#1 Blogdaughter sends in yet another story of people using words incorrectly...

Sheriff: California transit officer shot to death by colleague was wearing a bulletproof vest
The San Francisco Bay Area transit officer who was accidentally killed by a fellow officer while they searched an apartment was wearing a bulletproof vest when he suffered a single gunshot wound to the chest, an official said.

The bullet struck an area of BART Police Sgt. Tom Smith's body that was not covered by the vest, Alameda County sheriff's spokesman Sgt. J.D. Nelson said Thursday.
The vest wasn't bulletproof, was it now? Now, yes, I understand that "bulletproof vest" is a term much like "waterproof watch", where everyone knows that the item is really ____ resistant, but still, to put it in a headline is rather silly, no? And it gets worse later in the article, where a former San Fran police captain says it's not uncommon for officers to be killed while wearing the vests. Now, yes, it's semantics, but still...

They don't know/aren't saying if the officer that did the shooting had a negligent discharge or improperly identified his target. Neither case is acceptable, period. Look, I know they were going after a potential armed criminal, but that's no excuse for poor trigger discipline or target acquisition. We've given police officers a lot of leeway and a lot of tools for mitigating exactly these kinds of situations, so it's far more heartbreaking to see it still happening.

Either the cop that pulled the trigger was running around in a high-stress environment with his booger hook on the bang switch and tripped, or he improperly identified his target before blasting away (or simply didn't ID the target). Neither possibility exactly covers the officer in glory. Either he's too quick on the trigger or butterfingers, and no matter which is the case, he killed a fellow officer. He'll have to live with that the rest of his life.

It's a terrible scene all around, but perhaps it can be used to train other officers so it becomes less common...

That is all.

4 comments:

Dave H said...

I'm wondering why transit police were searching an apartment in the first place. Did somebody leave it on a train?

Anonymous said...

Dave, the perp was wanted for a robbery at a BART station and it was a joint operation with other LEO's.

Jay, the worst place to get shot is under the arm pit. Most vest can not offer protection there without severely restricting movement. It is on of the reasons folks are taught to keep themselves squared to the threat so they get the most coverage by the vest. Even my RAV vest wont' help if you got hit there.

Gerry

Anonymous said...

Remeber that the police and military are the only professionals that should have firearms.

Anonymous said...

"Bullet proof" was coined by the sales department. Unless it can stop a 50BMG, 338Lapua, 416Rigby et al it is not bullet proof.

Al_in_Perrault