The recent story of 17-year old Deven Guilford brings up the issue of police abuse once again. There seems to be a never-ending stream of cases where cops gun an unarmed person down. But the tendency for civil rights advocates seems to be to blindly condemn the cops every time, even before all the facts are in. This is not sensible, nor does it lend credibility to the cause of liberty or civil rights.
The shooting of the 'unarmed 17-year old white youth' in Michigan appears by all evidence to be very well justified. Deven may have been trying to 'flex his rights.' but he did it in a very unwise and irrational way. His choice of actions are what led to his death.
I'll preface this by conveying the facts, very clearly, that I am not a police bootlicker or police state apologist.
"What I see here is a young boy trying to take a step and possibly flex his rights for the first time. Sure, he wasn't perfect at it, but he was learning and I give him an applaud for this. What a shame it had to end in a death of a young child. The officer could have avoided such a horrific situation like this if he just let this young boy flex his rights. Nobody, especially unarmed, deserves to die for the rights we have as Americans. Justice needs to be served."
Applauded?? Justice needs to be served? Try not acting like a belligerent maniac who refuses to show a license during a traffic stop and don't attacks the cop, and you most likely won't get shot. The video of this tragic exchange on a dark roadside is below.
Look at the pictures below, of 'innocent looking' Deven and Officer Frost, after the obviously savage beatdown he suffered at the hands of the 17-year-old "boy."
Not EVERYTHING is police abuse, and not every shooting of an "unarmed youth" is unjustified. As someone who tends towards libertarianism, but not an anarchist, I believe in law and order. Whether you believe driving is a right, (which I think it should be, and I believe that non-commercial driving should not be subject to licensing requirments) the roadside is not the venue for these matters, and if you attack another man you will simply face the consequences.
I have read the 19-page press release from the County prosecutor and believe that the evidence does indeed show that this was a justified shooting.
As the report states, in part, I agree with the following:
Sgt. Frost was not the aggressor, Deven was... as such, Sgt. Frost was legally justified in shooting Deven in self defense. ...Decision not to charge - Based upon a review of the facts and the law, Deven was the initial physical aggressor, and presented an immediate danger of great bodily harm or even death to Sgt. Frost.
Based on sound public policy to avoid public confrontations like this case, people are required to submit to police authority and challenge perceived errors later in court. If Deven had been ticketed or criminally charged, he could have challenged the reason for stop, or his excuse for not having his license. the judge or magistrate could have heard evidence and decided whether Deven was correct or not under Michigan law. Roasides are not the proper venue for such debates.
...law enforcement officers have the same privilege of self defense as anyone else.
Eaton County Prosecutors issued a press release on the matter, along with the photos:
June 17, 2015
Sgt. Jonathan Frost Injury Photos from Shooting Death Incident Involving Deven Guilford
Eaton County Prosecuting Attorney Douglas R. Lloyd is releasing photos of the head and facial injuries sustained by Eaton County Sheriff�s Sgt. Jonathan Frost in the February 28, 2015 incident with Deven Guilford. These photos had not been released as part of Prosecutor Lloyd�s June 16, 2015 press conference Powerpoint presentation. Following the press conference, questions have been presented to Mr. Lloyd�s office about Sgt. Frost�s injuries, which were explained in this office�s 19-page report yesterday.
June 16, 2015
No Charges Issued Against ECSD Sergeant in Shooting Death of Deven Guilford
NEWS RELEASE: Eaton County Prosecuting Attorney Douglas R. Lloyd announced this morning that charges will not be issued against Eaton County Sheriff's Sgt. Jonathan Frost, who fatally shot Deven Lee Guilford, age 17, of Mulliken, MI on February 28, 2015 on M43 between Grand Ledge and Mulliken. Sgt. Frost discharged his service handgun seven times. A detailed summary of the Michigan State Police Department investigation, and Prosecutor Lloyd's legal conclusions, are summarized in a 19-page press release, which can be downloaded at http://www.eatoncounty.org/images/Departments/Prosecuting Attorney/Press_Releases/Guilford_Press_Release.pdf (updated on 06/17/2015). Mr. Lloyd determined that Sgt. Frost acted in a reasonable and honest belief that he was in danger of serious injury, or even being killed, by Mr. Guilford, and shot in justifiable self-defense under Michigan law. Deven Guilford had been stopped for a civil infraction violation (flashing his high beams at the sheriff's department SUV). Deven believed that Sgt. Frost had his high beams on. Prosecutor Lloyd noted in his release that the motor vehicle code (MCL 257.700(a)) prohibits anyone from using high beams within 500 feet of an oncoming vehicle. Deven protested throughout the stop that Sgt. Frost had his high beams on. Deven did not cooperate or comply with Sgt. Frost's eight requests for a driver's license and vehicle paperwork. At one point Deven said he had his license and would not show it, claiming that Sgt. Frost did not have the right to see it. After several minutes, Sgt. Frost decided to arrest Deven for No License in Possession, a 90-day misdemeanor violation of the motor vehicle code. Deven physically and verbally resisted and opposed Sgt. Frost's attempts to pull him from the car. Eventually, at taser-point, Deven got out of the car. When Deven physically resisted being handcuffed, Sgt. Frost shot his taser at Deven, but it did not connect as needed for the taser to briefly immobilize Deven. Instead, Deven got to his feet and charged at Sgt. Frost. During a 10-15 second physical struggle on a snow-covered roadside culvert, Deven repeatedly punched Sgt. Frost in the face. Sgt. Frost reported that he was losing consciousness, and shot at Deven seven times in less than five seconds because he feared that Deven would inflict serious injury to him, or even kill him if Deven got hold of his service firearm. Deven was shot seven times in his chest, torso, arm, wrist and head. Deven died at the scene.
As recorded on both the body-cam and Deven's own cell phone, Deven was defiant toward the officer's authority. He challenged the reason for te traffic stop, questioned the legitimacy of the officer's position as a law enforcement officer, refused to provide identification and other required vehicle information after numerous requests, refused to get out of the car when ordered to do so, did not comply with demands so he could be arrested and forcibly resisted, opposed or obstructed Sgt. Frost's efforts to handcuff him; all while he was focused on documenting his encounter.
Deven's father and girlfriend reported that, in the days and weeks preceding this traffic stop, Deven was focused on YouTube videos of police encounters with citizens. While not expressing harsh anti-police rhetoric, Deven was supporting the videos as examples of police violating people's rights and "how bad cops are." They said that Deven's focus on these videos was recent, sudden, out of the ordinary, and may have influenced Deven in this traffic stop. His father reported that, in recent days, he tried to counsel his son that these videos did not show how all police acted. Deven's act of recording the traffic stop may have been intended for YouTube. Deven held his phone to focus on Sgt. Frost and narrated, "This is what American..." as Sgt. Frost ordered him to put the phone down and move his arms to his side so he could be handcuffed.
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Martin Hill is a Catholic paleoconservative and civil rights advocate. His work has been featured in the Los Angeles Daily News, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, The Orange County Register, KNBC4 TV Los Angeles, The Press Enterprise, LewRockwell.com, WhatReallyHappened.com, Infowars.com, PrisonPlanet.com, Economic Policy Journal, TargetLiberty.com, FreedomsPhoenix, Haaretz, TMZ, Veterans Today, Jonathan Turley blog, The Dr. Katherine Albrecht Show, National Motorists Association, AmericanFreePress.net, RomanCatholicReport.com, WorldNetDaily, HenryMakow.com, OverdriveOnline.com, Educate-Yourself.org, TexeMarrs.com, Dr. Kevin Barrett's Truth Jihad radio show, Strike-The-Root.com, Pasadena Weekly, ActivistPost.com, Los Angeles Catholic Lay Mission Newspaper, KFI AM 640, IamtheWitness.com, Redlands Daily Facts, SaveTheMales.ca, BlackBoxVoting, The Michael Badnarik Show, The Wayne Madsen Report, Devvy.com, Rense.com, FromTheTrenchesWorldReport.com, BeforeItsNews.com, The Contra Costa Times, Pasadena Star News, Silicon Valley Mercury News, Long Beach Press Telegram, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, L.A. Harbor Daily Breeze, CopBlock.org, DavidIcke.com, Whittier Daily News, KCLA FM Hollywood, The Fullerton Observer, Antiwar.com, From The Trenches World Report, and many others. Archives can be found at LibertyFight.com and DontWakeMeUp.Org.