Pittsburgh police open fire on raging nut in Hill District

This is emblematic of the Pittsburgh police, and why a good story tells more than it tries to.

Finally, one officer discovered the door was unlocked and opened it, to find Mr. Parker walking toward them from a hallway with a gun drawn…The officer fired a single round at Mr. Parker, and Mr. Parker retreated to a back room in the house. He then came back into the hallway and fired at the officers. The officer fired three rounds back at Mr. Parker and Mr. Parker again returned to the back room, announcing that he wanted to surrender.~source

In other words the officer fired first. When Parker returned fire, he became the perpetrator of an Attempted Homicide. Because he had his gun drawn after police invited themselves in. Maybe he knew it was coming. Maybe he was too drunk to see straight. That’s what investigations are for. But that’s a problem we call escalating violence. They have reports of a raging nut with a gun. Their solution is to invite themselves into his house and open fire the moment they see him in possession of his firearm.

When someone fires a weapon at you, you fire back. This is what we mean when we talk about how poorly trained Pittsburgh Police are. They’re responding to a call for a highly-irrational, violent man, and their response is trying to kill him. If the officer had killed the guy, then what would the threat have amounted to: the presence of a firearm?

Last night, as Mr. Parker was about to be transported to the Allegheny County Jail, he began vomiting in the back of the police van. Paramedics responded, but police said they did not know if he was to be treated at a hospital.~ibid

Maybe a clue as to what was up with him. Drunk maybe, or just nerves. I’m leaning with drunk, but that’s mainly a guess.

Man goes ape-shit and then a cop goes Dirty Harry on him, escalating the violence. This, from the story, appears to be the situation. Mind you, Parker’s going to jail for something or other by his own actions. He did according to the report threaten his neighbor with a gun.

The point is escalation. The police officer should rarely, if ever be the one who starts shooting. That’s the behavior of a trained professional. Shoot first and ask questions later is the dire strait of someone who is forced into a situation, not one who faces them for a living.

This is finally, leaving aside the fact that the officer discharged his weapon first, indoors, and in a hallway and missed.


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