April 21, 2009

reckless endangerment?

Filed under:, , , , — cwage @ 4:59 pm

So, yesterday, a man robbed the Verizon store on White Bridge road (and today, appears to have committed suicide). From yesterday's story on the robbery:

Authorities said the man held up five store employees and two customers inside, and when he came out into the parking lot, he held up a third customer.

He didn't realize that customer also had a gun. Police said the customer pulled a handgun and fired several shots at the robber.

A News 2 crew on the scene said four shots were fired in the parking lot as the suspect was fleeing.

No one was struck.

The customer missed his attacker but possibly hit the getaway car, 2005 or 2006 silver Ford Escape SUV.

Investigators said the victim did have a handgun carry permit and according to police, was within his rights to pull his gun in self defense.

Can anyone familiar with the law explain this to me? Is it state-specific? How is discharging a weapon in city limits at a person that is fleeing (i.e. not constituting a threat to the shooter, or anyone else) not reckless endangerment or something? I was under the impression that in most scenarios, shooting at someone that presents no immediate threat was illegal. That issue aside, his choice strikes me as wantonly irresponsible -- that area is extraordinarily crowded. He could have hit any number of innocent bystanders.

WKRN's article seems to be framing this debate in the context of carry permits and where it's legal to have a firearm:

Where it's appropriate to have a gun has been a hot topic for lawmakers in recent weeks.

The legislature recently approved a bill that will allow handguns in restaurants that serve alcohol, as long as the person has a carry permit.

Mitch Shelton does not support the legislation.

"You're at a family restaurant... No guns should be allowed in a place like that, no way, shape or form," he told News 2.

When it comes to self-defense, Giles said it's a different issue.

"That's a horse of a different color. When it's defense, that's a different story," he said. "You pick and choose where you go. Hopefully it's a safe place."

This seems to me to be missing the point entirely. This has nothing to do with whether or not he should have had a gun. It has everything to do with whether or not he should have discharged it -- and it shocks me that his actions are being considered "within his rights". What am I missing?

May 11, 2008

actual quotes

Filed under:, , , — cwage @ 12:47 pm

Today's entry in the continuing adventures of the Great Nashville Homeless Hysterical Episode. All quotes are real. The names have been withheld to be nice:

Homeless man robs Dunn brothers at Knifepoint
...
According to what the owner told me, a black homeless man threatened his life in attempt to rob him. I walked in around 11:30 a.m. on Saturday morning and police had already handcuffed the man and put him in a police car. William met me there for coffee a few minutes later.

Just another reason not to live downtown for most Nashvillian's and why Tony will never build his condo tower for the mega rich. A guy cannot even get a coffee anymore without a homeless thug committing a crime. I would love to read if the homeless guy defends the homeless on this one.

Not sure how he knew the guy was homeless. Maybe he was branded with a scarlet "H".

Context to the next few. A couple that lives downtown was mugged last week. I have no doubt that this is a very scary thing to have happen to you, without a doubt, and I have nothing but sympathy. But .. anyways. Quotes:

I'm so sorry for what just happened to you, I hope you are ok. THESE GUYS WILL SOME DAY PAY FOR WHAT THEY DID!

This quote isn't that bad or anything, I just thought it was funny. Okay, batman. Anyways, the real beaut:

There's something else you could bring up if you have time, and if you agree with me. I think we ought to request that Public Works relocate some of the benches on Church Street to other parts of the downtown area...even as far as James Robertson. We've had the benches a few years now and all they do is encourage loitering and panhandling on Church Street. It looks bad for our city.

DOWN WITH BENCHES!! This will fix our panhandling problem for sure. Sigh.

November 30, 2007

parks and crime: a modest proposal

Filed under:, , , , — cwage @ 7:38 am

So, I'm watching all the (deserved) turmoil over the rape in the bicentennial mall and the lack of regular patrolling there. (See S-Town Mike for good coverage of this.)

I've also been observing the treatment of the Church Street Park and their efforts to remove the homeless uh birds. (See Kevin for more on this.), which has resulted in a marked increase in police presence, as well as an army of Downtown Partnership Segway-ed "safety ambassadors".

It seems the solution here is obvious. We need to get more homeless people hanging out in the bicentennial mall. Evidence suggests that this would have it staffed and patrolled in short order.

February 7, 2006

GPS darts

Filed under:, , — cwage @ 11:30 am

This is a genius idea:

Police Chief William J. Bratton unveiled a strange new weapon in the police department's strategy to halt high-speed pursuits -- adhesive darts with a global positioning system that are fired at fleeing cars by police.

Once fired from a patrol car, the GPS dart is designed to stick to a fleeing car, allowing squad cars to back off the chase.

"Instead of us pushing them doing 70 or 80 miles an hour," Bratton said, "this device allows us not to have to pursue after the car. It allows us to start vectoring where the car is."

It doesn't say what they use to transmit the signal, however -- what the range is, or how susceptible to jamming it is. I'll dig that up later.. This is a great way to prevent needless deaths in high-speed chases. It'll make future re-makes of the Dukes of Hazzard a lot less exciting, though.