By Dave Lindorff
The latest police murder — and that’s what it was whatever the circumstances — of 16-old foster child Ma’Khia Bryant by a Columbus, Ohio cop, is sickening to watch.
No way did that officer, Nicholas Reardon, have to kill that young teenage girl. Maybe she had a knife, and maybe she was even planning to try and stab or cut the girl or woman dressed in pink that she was running towards at the time of the shooting. But the odds of such an injury being fatal with the small kitchen paring knife in her hand were not great.
Besides, there were other ways available to Officer Reardon to have stopped her. He, in particular, reportedly an Air Force veteran and recipient of a marksman award. At the distance he was standing away from Bryant, he clearly could have fired to wound and successfully stopped her knife attack (the mere fact that all four of his bullets hit her in the chest shows us he could aim). In fact, just firing his weapon into the ground would have likely stopped everyone in the group including Bryant, in their tracks.
Furthermore, we don’t know which of the four bullets that Officer Reardon pumped rapid fire into his victim actually killed her, because she went down on the ground so quickly. She should not have been shot, but if he was going to shoot her, instead of firing off four rounds in a matter of no more than two seconds by my count, he should have fired once and waited to see if that shot had stopped her. There was zero reason for firing the other three bullets.
It was troubling to see how Reardon, after having dispatched Bryant, stood there with his gun still pointed at her limp, prone body as another officer tried unsuccessfully to administer CPR, as if he thought she was somehow still a threat. Some other officer can be seen gently moving his/her hand up to Reardon’s gun to bring it down and calm him. This was a man who had clearly lost control of his judgement, and some fellow officer had recognized that.
We need to know what the training is for Columbia police when it comes to shooting people. In fact we need to know what the training is for all police in this gun-obsessed country.
The fact that cops are armed doesn’t mean that they should use those weapons of death as a first option in every situation.
Whatever it takes, we need to end the racism in policing, and to end the killing of kids by police — especially the disproportionate killing of black and brown kids.
For the rest of this article by DAVE LINDORFF in ThisCantBeHappening!, the uncompromised, collectively run, six-time Project Censored Award-winning online alternative news site, please go to: https://thiscantbehappening.net/im-sickened-of-police-killings/