Within an hour, local and national news stations had run with it, and their comment sections, along with social media, began the usual cop hatred and ridiculous armchair quarterbacking that has been a blight on truth since the advent of the internet. People with nary a clue spewing emotionally-based bile via keyboard.
Here are few examples of standard responses, and NO, I won’t censor them:
“The cop was close enough to disable the guy with one shot. Why 7 shots? I would have shot his hand holding the weapon then in the knee and cuff him. I think some cops get paranoid and don’t think straight before taking action. I understand he was alone and scared obviously. Also the person taking the video was an idiot for being in the middle of a shooting! Another one not thinking!” – Katey, Heavey.com
“this is outright murder fuck this police state“ – Joe Arron, Founder and Executive Director at MSJ Wellness, Facebook coment
“All I can say is this kid better have had a gun or my police hatred level will go up yet another notch. This cop had no idea there was a video being recorded – I will support cops when it’s clear there is no wrong doing and I will call their coward asses out when it is flat out murder… and this is “flat out murder”!! very sad that another young un-armed white kid lost his life to the trigger happy cops. You stick your knee in his chest, half off a side walk and you people think human behavior would be not to move?? or would it be more likely to struggle to breath, grabbing at anything to fight for life. FU HB Cops!” – Sam Moriarity, Facebook coment
“Not protesting, couldn’t care less about the dead guy, but that was murder by a cop who was so scared he couldn’t think, just react. Poor training & poor attitude check by the police dept. Seven shots at point blank range, come on.” – Mike Tomaselli, Facebook comment
And there are 10’s of thousands of such comments that have been posted. I won’t bother dissecting, instead I’ll simply point out that this represents a cross-section of the American voting public and potential jury pool.
Media outlets were also doing their best to slander the officer without giving the appearance of taking sides. A slime tactic “news” organizations are quite adroit at.
The International Business Times quotes Charles “Sid” Heal, a retired L.A. County sheriff’s commander and shooting expert