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Leftist clamor to take guns away from law abiding citizens (we know criminals will not willingly give them up). Yet, how much can we trust agents of the state with the exclusive use of firearms?
Bronx, New York: Amadou Diallo was chased by four plainclothes police officers into his apartment building. Apparently thinking they were robbers, he tried to hand over his wallet, but the police opened fire at close range and hit him with 19 bullets, killing him. The other 22 bullets missed him. Diallo was unarmed.
New York, New York: Abner Louima was sodomized with a plunger by two police officers in a police department bathroom, to the point that his intestines were ruptured and he suffered severe damage to his internal organs.
Austin, Texas: Rodney Wickware died after being assaulted by five police officers trying to arrest him for walking through traffic on foot.
Richmond, Texas: Robert "Jack" Williams was shot six times and killed during a traffic stop. Williams was unarmed.
Houston, Texas: Derek Kaeserman was shot and killed by seven Houston police officers who had surrounded his truck after a brief chase. Police fired 59 rounds into the truck. Mr. Kaeserman was unarmed.
Bellaire, Texas: Travis Allen was shot twice in the back and killed while laying on the floor under arrest. He was unarmed.
Nashville, Tennessee: Leon Fisher was shot and killed by police after being stopped for speeding. According to bystanders, Fisher was handcuffed when he was shot, sparking a riot.
Greenville, South Carolina: Jamel Radcliff died of asphyxiation after four guards choked him and beat his head on the concrete floor. He was arrested for not paying a fine.
Gaithersburg, Maryland: Becky Garnet was shot in the back of the head and killed as she sat in her car during a traffic stop. The police officer thought she had a gun, but it was a bag of potato chips.
Michigan: According to the Detroit Free Press, Michigan police officers have used law enforcement databases to find the home addresses and other information on people they wanted to harass, including sexual rivals, love interests and others.
Newark, New Jersey: Earl Faison died in police custody after police sprayed him in the face with chemicals. He was mistaken for another man who had killed a police officer the year before.
Louisville, Kentucky: While participating in a strike at the GE plant, Kjeston "Michelle" Rodgers, 40, was hit and killed by a police car. Police claim it was an accident, but there is a long history of police killing strikers.
Lawrence, Kansas: Gregg Sevier's parents called 911 because he was depressed and suicidal. They asked for a mental health professional but instead got two police officers who picked the lock to Gregg's bedroom door. Gregg pointed a knife at them and they shot him six times. One bullet went through Gregg and struck his sister Judy.
Donald Scott. Age 62 at the time of his death at his home in Malibu, CA. on October 2, 1992. Scott and his wife, Frances Plante, were awakened by a pounding at the door. As Plante attempted to open the door, a narcotics task force from the LA County Sheriff's Dept. burst into the home, weapons in hand. Plante was pushed forcefully from the door at gun point. She cried out, "Don't shoot me, don't kill me!" With a gun aimed at her head, she looked to her right and saw Donald charging into the room, waving a revolver above his head. She heard a deputy shout, "Put the gun down! Put the gun down! Put the gun down!" As Scott was doing so, she heard three gun shots ring out, apparently from two sources. Her husband was killed instantly. Scott was a millionaire, heir to the Scott Paper fortune. Scott owned 250 acres of breathtakingly beautiful land that was adjacent to federal park lands. Attempts had been made by the feds to buy the property, but Scott was not interested in selling. Claims that there might be pot growing on the land, made by agents who did aerial surveillance, were used to get a search warrant. An official inquiry suggested that agents were hoping this raid would lead to asset forfeiture of the property Scott would not sell. No marijuana was found. Scott did not even smoke it.
Annie Rae Dixon Age 84 and bedridden when she was killed by police in a 1992 drug raid in East Texas. A 28 year-old officer said his automatic pistol accidentally discharged when he kicked open Mrs. Dixon's bedroom door. Earlier that night, Police claim they recieved a tip that there were drugs in the house. So they got a search warrant, and returned to the house just after 2 am. They sprinted up the ramshackle porch and smashed the front door with a battering ram. Accoding to police, they swept in, the officer kicked in the door to Ms. Dixon's bedroom and fell, slamming his elbow against the door and firing the gun, killing her instantly. No drugs were found in the home.
Alberto Sepulveda, September 13, 2000. 11 year old Alberto Sepulveda was a 7th grader at Prescott Senior Elementary School in Modesto, California. The raid was supposedly part of a drug trafficking investigation. A SWAT team violently assaulted Alberto's home because his father was accused of posessing drugs. Knowing that Moises Sepulveda was a family man, with a wife and 3 children, ages 8, 11 and 14, the decision was, naturally, made to raid the home at 6:16 a.m. on a school day. SWAT teams called upon for the early morning raid of the children's home were from the Sacramento and San Francisco offices of the FBI, the DEA, the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department and the Lodi Police Department.
David Hawn, a 21 year police veteran with 18 1/2 years experience on SWAT teams, unloaded his shotgun into the back of the 11 year old boy, ending his life instantly. Of course, officials quickly labeled the shooting "accidental." .
Robert Adams On October 4, 2000, 61 year old John Adams of Lebanon, Tennessee was gunned down by police raiding the wrong house, supposedly looking for drugs. He was watching TV when armed men burst through the door. His wife Loraine Adams, who said that the armed invaders did not identify themselves as police until after the shooting, was handcuffed and thrown onto her knees in a different room while her husband bled to death. Police Chief Billy Weeks said that the shooting was not the fault of the two officers who shot Grandpa Adams, Officers Kyle Shedran and Greg Day. The raid was blamed on false information from a police informant.
Mario Paz A 69 year old grandfather died a brutal death at the hands of police looking for marijuana on August 9, 1999. No drugs were found. It was an hour before midnight when an El Monte police SWAT team, serving a search warrant as part of a broad-ranging narcotics investigation, undertook what it called the "high-risk entry" of a Compton home--shooting the locks off the front and back doors. Their warrant, which named no one in the Paz home, says police expected to find marijuana and cash belonging to a suspected member of a drug ring who had allegedly used the house as a mail drop. They found no drugs, but in the course of the search they shot a retired grandfather twice in the back--killing him. The widow was hustled out of the house in nothing but panties, a towel and plastic handcuffs. She and six others were later taken away and intensively interrogated, but no one was charged. Ten thousand dollars in cash was seized as evidence, along with a .22- caliber rifle and three pistols, according to investigators for the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. The family said that the money was patriarch Mario Paz's life savings and that he kept firearms for protection in the high-crime neighborhood.
Maria Luisa Paz, 51, said her husband, had been driven to Tijuana for doctor's appointments that morning. She showed a reporter his purchases of medicine prescribed for his heart condition, prostate ailment, and back problems from a 1985 on-the-job injury. She said he also emptied his Tijuana bank account of more than $10,000 in savings, fearing that the money could be lost to the much-publicized computer complications that some people are afraid will occur Jan. 1. She showed a reporter the bank receipt for the withdrawal.
A sheriff's investigator said the El Monte officer shot Paz because he thought he was reaching for a weapon--something Paz's widow adamantly denies. His widow described the scene: "They yelled and yelled. I said, 'My husband is sick! He's an old man!' I grabbed [the officer's] leg," she recalled. "[The officer] just pointed the gun at my husband and shot." She said the officer, wearing a mask, "just looked at me." The drug suspect named in the warrant is Marcos Beltran Lizarraga. The Paz family said that he lived next door in the early 1980s, that Mario sold him a car six years or so ago and that he occasionally used the Pazes' mailing address. The family said that they sometimes would mark the mail "return to sender" but that on other occasions their father gave it to Beltran's nephew. Mario Paz was pronounced dead at 11:29 p.m. at the hospital, according to the county coroner's office. At the time he died, he was planning to sell his house and move to Colorado, according to Mario Paz Jr., 31, a computer operations supervisor for the Denver office of a California HMO.
Pedro Oregon Navarro: On July 12, 1998, Pedro Oregon Navarro, a 22 year-old father of two, was shot to death in the bathroom of his home by at least six Houston (TX) police officers. The officers had entered Navarro's home by kicking in his door without a warrant on the word of a drug suspect who told them that there were drugs being sold in the apartment. No drugs were found in the home and, blood tests on Navarro's corpse came back negative.
Officers claimed that they believed that Navarro had fired upon them, but ballistics tests showed that all 30 shots were fired by the officers. Twelve of those shots hit Navarro, nine from above and behind him. In the days following the shooting, Harris County D.A. Johnny Holmes inflamed passions, telling the press that the officers were within their rights to kill Navarro as they believed he was resisting arrest.
Andre Burgess (shot, not killed, for holding candy bar) A federal undercover agent working on a "High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force" in Queens, NY, shot a local high school student when he mistook a candy bar in the youth's hand for a gun. 17 year-old Andre Burgess, captain of the Hillcrest High School soccer team, was walking down 138th street in Laurelton, Queens, when the carload of Federal agents rolled by and one officer, identified by the New York Daily News as William Cannon, jumped out. Cannon apparently identified himself, but, according to Burgess, gave the teen no time to react. "I turned to see what was up, and boom, I'm hit, and I fell to the ground." Burgess also described the callousness with which the incident was handled even after it was discovered that he had been unarmed and apparently wholly uninvolved in any criminal activity. "I'm laying there, bleeding, waiting to go the hospital, and he's shaking hands with the other cops, or agents, or whatever they were," he said. "He asked one of them, 'Don't I know you from some other case?' And I'm still lying there."
Esequiel Hernandez. An 18 year-old high school student from the small Texas border town of Redford, was just tending his family's goats, was shot by Marines given the job of stopping the drug flow. Officials said Mr. Hernandez, to their knowledge, was not engaged in any illegal activities, when he was shot. His family said he had just returned home from high school and had taken his flock of 30 goats out for grazing. Just a few minutes after Junior ventured out with his flock, a squad of four camouflaged U.S. Marines on a covert anti-drug mission, shot and killed the young shepherd -- A U.S citizen slain by his own military on U.S. soil.
The Marines, who were helping the Border Patrol stake out a reputed smuggling corridor near the Hernandez clan's ranchito, do not allege that Junior was trafficking in narcotics. They claim that he fired his gun twice, and that they returned fire with semiautomatic M-16's. Marine Col. Thomas Kelly said that this was all in compliance with the rules of engagement.
An autopsy on a high school sophomore shot to death by a Marine anti-drug squad on the Texas-Mexico border shows the youth bled to death after a bullet pierced his side, fragmented, then tore through his aorta, stomach and other organs. The report also shows that the bullet that struck 18-year-old Ezequiel Hernandez Jr. entered on the right side of his chest, then traveled toward the left side of his body on two divergent paths.
Prosecutors have said the wound indicates the right-handed teen- ager, who fired two shots with a .22-caliber rifle before he was killed, was not aiming at the Marines when he was hit. The autopsy failed to find any substances in Hernandez's blood, except "a trace of coffee," said Daniel Bodine, justice of the peace in Presidio. "Everything came out clean." The town had no knowledge the Marines were patrolling in camouflaged uniforms - ghillie suits which make them virtually invisible to the unknowing eye. The Marines had been out there for days within close range of homes and people were unaware of their presence.
Pat Eymer, unarmed, shot while holding 5 year old daughter, however she was fortunate, she survived. On October 23,1998, at approximately 7:30am, in Sallisaw, Oklahoma, the drug raid took place at the private residence of Steve and Pat Eymer. Their house was swarmed by a team of police to "serve" a drug related arrest warrant. Inside this residence was a 13 year old teenage girl, a 5 year old little girl, a 4 month old infant, their Mother, Dad and another couple that had stopped by for a cup of coffee on their way to a fishing trip.
Armed agents poured in screaming and waving guns at people. The mother reached for her 5 year old to keep her from running in terror and as she held her frightened daughter her shoulder was blown off by one of the trained terrorists! NO FIREARMS, and NO DRUGS were in the house, and the mother was in the kitchen several feet away from the goon squad. The 13 year old passed out at the sight of seeing her mother shot down in her own home and the 5 year old went into total hysteria
The Sallisaw police department filed no charges on the innocent victims of their brutal assault. There were no firearms or drugs in the house.
Bruce Lavoie On August 3, 1989, Lavoie lay peacefully sleeping in the room he shared with his young son in the village of Hudson, New Hampshire. At five in the morning he was awakened by a loud noise as his whole home was shaken violently. A battering ram had smashed his front door, and a dark band of armed men rushed into his small apartment. Rising to defend his son, Lavoie was shot to death as his little boy watched helplessly.
Christian Missionaries Veronica and Charity Bowers. On April 20, 2001, a Peruvian Air Force plane, acting in connection with U.S. "anti-drug" efforts, shot down a private plane, killing 35 year old Veronica Bowers, a Christian missionary from Muskegon, Michigan, and her 7 month old infant daughter Charity. A single bullet passed through the woman's body and into the skull of her youngster. Her husband, son, and the pilot of the plane survived, however, pilot Kevin Donaldson suffered a crushed leg bone and severed arteries. A CIA plane had alerted the Peruvian authorities to Bowers' plane, which appeared "suspicious." Pilot Donaldson had filed a flight plan to land in Iquitos, Peru, but evidently the information was not passed on to the American authorities. Since the CIA did not know about the flight in advance, the assumption was that the plane was carrying drugs, so the people aboard naturally had to be killed. There were no drugs found on the plane.
Rev. Accelyne Williams. In a police raid on his Boston apartment in 1994, the 75-year-old Methodist minister who collapsed and died of heart failure, at the hands of Boston police. Acting on a tip by an informant, the police conducted a no-knock raid. They burst into Williams's Dorchester apartment, breaking down the front door. Police then chased Williams into his bedroom, breaking down that door as well. They then flipped him on his stomach and handcuffed him as one cop thrust his knee in Williams's back. No criminal charges were brought against any of the police involved in the death of Williams. One officer received a 30-day suspension with pay while two others were reprimanded. No guns or drugs were found, as it was soon discovered they raided the wrong apartment.
-------------------- To call humans 'rational beings' does injustice to the term, 'rational.' Humans are capable of rational thought, but it is not their essence. Humans are animals, beasts with complex brains. Humans, more often than not, utilize their cerebrum to rationalize what their primal instincts, their preconceived notions, and their emotional desires have presented as goals - humans are rationalizing beings.
Macon, Georgia: I was pulled from the drivers seat of my car and thrown against the hood. I was patted down and cuffed. My car was searched. I was charged with speeding after no drugs were found (a handgun was found however as I am a concealed carry permit holder and yes I did inform them that I had it). After the illegial search the police department lost the tape after my lawyer contacted them. He told me I had no grounds for a case.
-------------------- "Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience." - C.S. Lewis
"I would rather be exposed to the inconveniencies attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson
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