ATL police shoot and kill 92 year old lady.

Apparently she fired shots but it’s still a tragic story. Here’s the article and an excerpt (Hat Tip: Drudge):

A 92-year-old woman was shot to death Tuesday after she fired at three narcotics officers trying to serve a warrant at her house, officials said.

Neighbors and relatives said it must have been a case of mistaken identity. Police said they had the right address.

Police said the woman, whose name was not released, was the only person home at the time, and had lived there for about 17 years.

As the plainclothes Atlanta police officers approached the house about 7 p.m., a woman inside started shooting, striking each of them, said Officer Joe Cobb, a police spokesman. One was hit in the arm, another in a thigh and the third in a shoulder.

Bloggers are talking about this story, and there seems to be conflicting information. The story above says the police were shot as they approached, however:

Sarah Dozier, identified as a niece of the woman, told WAGA-TV that there were never any drugs at the house.

“My aunt was in good health. I’m sure she panicked when they kicked that door down,” Dozier said. “There was no reason they had to go in there and shoot her down like a dog.”

What happened first? The shooting or kicking down the door? I don’t generally have sympathy for people who shoot at police, but I agree with Glenn Reynolds on this point:

As I’ve said before, these raids should only occur when there’s reason to believe that lives are in immediate jeopardy. And police should be liable, civilly and criminally, without any shield of official immunity, in cases where these no-knock raids go wrong.

12 comments

  1. Paul Shuford says:

    Plainclothes police officers should never, ever be conducting a raid of this kind. Only uniformed police officers should be involved in anything like this. I’m supposed to believe that the people wearing plain clothes who is breaking into my house are the police just because they say they are? I hate to say this, but they probably would have gotten the same response from me.

  2. bird says:

    The local NPR affiliate reported that they knocked, identified themselves and then entered the house.

    I agree 100% with Mr. Shuford. Why were they in plainclothes? They are identifying themselves as police, so why wear not wear a uniform. This is a terrible policy.

  3. Paul Shuford says:

    Hopefully I’ll never be in that position. But it would be better if those who serve warrants were required by law to be in uniform in this State, to prevent this kind of thing from happening in the future.

  4. Mad Dog says:

    Bill Simon,

    I’d make a joke about aiming for the heart or the brain, but even I’m not that good a shot with such small targets.

    not a ha ha at all

    What kind of weapon was she using? I have not seen any details on that.

    If the police, as per some reports, were after a specific person, why did they ‘raid’ the home when the ‘suspect’ was not there?

    And as racist as this sounds, why should a 94 year black woman think the police were her friends?

    I’m sure the “Open us, it’s the police” tactic worked as well for the KKK in the South as it has worked in Baghdad recently.

    Mad Dog

  5. MountainThinker says:

    This a travesty caused by our nations flawed drug policy and a Janet Reno advocated policy that annihilates the 4th Amendment in what is called a “no-knock” warrant. Civil Libertarians, as I believe all Conservatives, and the best Republicans should be, should be outraged. This woman, a long-time resident who had watched her neighborhood slide downhill, put bars on her windows and doors, and tried to keep the gang-bangers and druggies away. She pulled a 6-shot revolver (loaded with 5 for safety, empty under the hammer) and successfully hit the invaders 5 out of 5 shots after the plain-clothed agents broke her door down without warning. In return, nearly 100 rounds were fired at her according to the latest reports. This is disgusting! It is incidents like this that rightfully inflame the anti-government fringe elements. Unless the department pays an enormous financial penalty to the family at AT LEAST fires these officers, if not sending them to jail, then honorable people everywhere should be furious. While this will likely not happen, this woman’s responsible ownership and use of her personal firearm to defend her home should be held up as an excellent example of proper citizenship that has been brutalized by out-of-control governmental officers. I hope those responsible pay dearly for this miscarriage of justice.

  6. blazer says:

    I don’t feel that these officers should be punished for this offense…

    I think that it should be the leadership that advised them to do a no-knock warrant or the plain-clothed tactic…

    I know some people like to think that cops hate black people but I don’t think that they do, I think of this as more of 3 cops just doing their jop and the leadership and the policy makers have dropped the ball…

    I have to agree with Shuford, should 3 “cops” break down my door there will be a similar result except if I am able to get 5 rounds off someone is gonna be dead.. if I shoot 5 times that is at least 2 dead 1 in bad shape…

    I hope this a learning experience and the lady’s life wasn’t lost in vain.

  7. gatormathis says:

    “He is described as a black male, 33 to 36 years old, weighing about 250 pounds. He is about six feet tall, with black hair and brown eyes.”

    Wow, good description. This shouldn’t fit over a few thousand guys in the ATL area.

    If this were what I resembled, I would be careful for a while if somebody yelled “HALT”, folks having itchy trigger fingers and all.

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