The report says six Vallejo police officers fired 55 rounds in 3.5 seconds at McCoy who was sitting in a silver Mercedes that was still in drive gear.
Some people are never happy. Six officers, 55 rounds, 3.5 seconds, estimated 25 hits on target. That’s nine rounds per officer. Taking the 25 hit estimate at face value, less than 50% accuracy. I bet the cops could do better.
According to an attorney retained by the family:
The man, identified as Willie McCoy, 20, had injuries so severe that it was hard to tell how many times he had been shot, said Melissa C. Nold, a lawyer for his family. She saw his body in person last week and estimated that there were about 25 gunshot wounds.Melissa C Nold, attorney, quoted in the New York Times
“It was just very, very disturbing,” she said. “He was just riddled with bullets. It was really a shock how many times he was actually struck.
Blake said the officers had reasonable suspicion and/or probable cause to detain or arrest McCoy for offenses that included carrying a loaded firearm in public, DUI, possession of a firearm under the influence of a controlled substance and resisting, delaying or obstructing a peace officer.Dave Blake, Police Use of Force Expert
Let’s review, it’s late at night. There is a drunk passed out in a car at the drive thru window of a fast food joint. Such incidents happen on a nightly basis. Most times the staff probably wake the driver, fills his order and sends him on his way. Occasionally the cops get called.
Been there done that. In my younger days, I would shake the drunk awake and after the fight then arrest him. Older and wiser, I ‘d leave the guy passed out, and face down in his breakfast. I’d ease the handcuffs on him, then wake him. No fight.
When I found a drunk in the car, the first step was to turn the car off. Then wake the drunk.
I guess I person face down in his breakfast or passed out in the drive thru could be suffering a medical incident. In which case, handcuffing them prior to making a full inquiry, isn’t nice. Beating them about the head and shoulders or shooting them 25 times because they woke swinging falls in the same category.
In this incident, officers responded to a drunk passed out in the drive thru. Responding officers approached the car and observed the passed out driver had a pistol in his lap. They tried to enter the vehicle to retrieve the weapon, but the car was locked.
Back up units arrived. The officers were in the process of positioning patrol cars to block the suspect vehicle when the soon to be dearly departed awoke, for the last time.
This brings up the age old question: “How many cops does it take to shoot a shithead?” The answer is open ended: “How many have you got?” This gives rise to the question: “how many rounds are too many?”
As Polk County Sheriff Judd was variously reported as adding, “That’s all the bullets we had or we would have shot him more” and “I suspect the only reason 110 rounds was all that was fired was that’s all the ammunition they had.” (The suspect was hit 68 times.)
How many cops fired and how many rounds hit is a red herring. If the first round was justified other rounds short of a coup de grace are probably also justified.
Dozens of drunks will be arrested today, tomorrow and every other day under substantially similar circumstances. They will survive. Nobody will get shot. Why? Most drunks do not pass out with a stolen pistol equipped with an extended magazine in their lap.
Unfair! the cops didn’t know the pistol was stolen when they shot. In all likelihood the bullet dummy did. Quick, lay your hands on a stolen gun. Can’t do it? Maybe it is the lifestyle. Compare and contrast, McCoy didn’t have a problem finding one. Rapper, thug wanna be, never to see 21, it’s a hard life when you are stupid.
I am not going to pontificate and say McCoy got what he deserved. It is perhaps fitting to go out with a song lyric.