Does Law Enforcement Have A License To Kill?
With all the talk about violence and the community uproar after especially horrific incidents it is amazing that the same seems not to apply to law enforcement. There is a double standard in our society that somehow only focuses on violence committed by citizens on citizens and ignores or excuses violence committed by government/state/local officials on citizens. The handwriting is on the wall. In the past few months there have been a series of damning articles by various writers from different publications.
Currently, as has been highlighted by the following articles, it would seem that in Boston and all over Massachusetts Law Enforcement has not only a License to Kill but a “Get Out of Jail Free” card which also protects them from any legal repercussions.
The Blackstonian has maintained a listing called “Shot by Police: Boston & Beyond” that will now be updated incorporating the information presented in these articles which as the writers note is very difficult to obtain and often information is withheld or incomplete.
Police shoot more often in Mass., cite rise in threats
A five-year trend, even as overall crime is down
By Maria Cramer | GLOBE STAFF JANUARY 05, 2014
At least 23 people were shot by police in Massachusetts in 2013 — 11 of them fatally, according to figures provided by Boston and State Police, troubling authorities who say the numbers reflect the growing threats police face, and startling civil libertarians who worry about the prevalence of deadly force.
From 2008 through 2013, the number of people shot by officers and state troopers has grown every year. Over that time period, there have been 86 shootings, 67 of which were determined to be justified. Two were classified as accidental, and two led to recommendations that the officers be retrained. The rest remain under investigation. Last year, Boston officials investigated six officer-involved shootings, compared with 1 in 2012. State Police investigated 17 in 2013 compared with 14 in 2012.
Clearing the cops
Do district attorneys rubber-stamp police use of deadly force?
BY: JACK SULLIVAN | ISSUE: WINTER 2014
FROM THE TINY TOWN of Colrain at the Vermont border to the siren-pierced streets of Boston, state and local police have shot and killed 73 people across Massachusetts over the last 12 years. The deadliest year was 2013, when 12 people were killed. Every completed killing investigation found the police were justified in using deadly force; only three of the cases were presented to a grand jury or judicial inquest to determine if a crime was committed.
A death in restraints after ‘standard procedure’
By Michael Rezendes | GLOBE STAFF FEBRUARY 16, 2014
Joshua Messier was having a schizophrenic attack, then died as Bridgewater state prison guards subdued him. The medical examiner called it homicide, then changed her mind. No one has been prosecuted, or even reprimanded, for the death of a young man in state care.