The only good thing that happened out of this is the actions of Jason Cox. Back when the shooting happened, Cox, a Franklin County Magistrate, happened to be working across the street. When the mortally wounded victim crashed his still moving car into a gas station, the Magistrate rushed in to save the day.
It is a good story, so read the whole thing. Officer Maynard knew the people in his building, and he surmised that trouble was coming that day. His preparation meant that when trouble came that day he was ready, willing, and able to handle that trouble without even firing a shot.
Note also that the NC DMV, like pretty much all State offices, is off limits to weapons, so the people who work there are disarmed by law. Without the Capital Police officer there, they all would have been sitting ducks. The law against guns (and kidnapping and probably murder) didn’t seem to slow this clown down at all. They only disarmed the workers in the building and the citizens there that day to get their license plates.
So, let’s say that you have a restraining order against you, and you show up at your wife’s workplace with a gun, rope, and duct tape. Then you get caught with all of it by an alert cop in the parking lot. You get hauled into court and convicted of Violating a Protective Order, Carrying a Concealed Weapon, and Purchase of a Firearm by a Prohibited Person. How long would you expect to spend behind bars?
Here in North Carolina, you get 8 to 10. Months.
So, if you have to go to the NC DMV office in downtown Raleigh, say hi to Officer Maynard.
While it would not sadden me to hear that the intruder had bled to death on the front lawn, I’m sure that the good minister is not too fussed that he didn’t kill the guy. He’s alive, his baby son’s alive, and he can go on with his life. What more could he ask for?
A robbery turned attempted murder was thwarted when one of the intended victims turned out to be an off duty Bridge and Tunnel police officer. In the resulting melee, the cop was wounded and passed out. His friend, an off duty school safety officer retrieved his friend’s gun and continued the fight.
Read the whole thing. There’s no way for me to excerpt it decently. Mom tracked down and nailed these thieves dead to rights. CMPD dropped the ball, but the real bad guys got caught again. Her son’s still in a world of hurt for his previous crimes, but thanks to his mom, he won’t get unfairly blamed for these.
I watched this video and it brought back some memories.
I watched this video and it brought back some memories.
See how the Army Marksmanship Unit guys react to the old sniper. You can see the deep respect they have for him. Notice too how he sees the AMU guys. You can feel the respect he has for them. It’s clear to me that he sees them not as a couple of guys in uniform, but as the modern, living, breathing successors to the guys that fought with him against the Axis in WWII. You can see how that shakes them. I know just how they feel.
I spent 4 years in the 82nd Airborne, from 1990 to 1994. (I was also in the Navy, 1996-2001, but that’s another story) I took leave for a month in Michigan City, Indiana in ’92 or ‘93, to hang out with a buddy that was getting out of the Army. We would ride out motorcycles from his house to his girlfriend’s house, and along the way there was a house that always had an 82nd Airborne flag flying.
And it wasn’t on a little flagpole, either. It was on an enormous flagpole, much bigger than you usually see in front of a house. It took me almost 3 weeks before I decided to knock on the door. The lady that opened the door didn’t seem all that surprised to see me. I told her that I saw the flag, I was in the 82nd Airborne, and I wondered why it was there. She seemed more worried that I might escape. Her husband, you see, was a WWII veteran of the 82nd, and he would like to meet me. In a serious voice she warned me “He’s blind.”
She ushered me in to his room, which was a sort of “man-cave,” but much cleaner. He had a tasteful shadow box on the wall with his decorations, but I don’t remember thinking that anything about the room would have warned me that this guy had been through hell and come back covered in glory. And his own blood, too. He told me about joining the Division as a replacement in Normandy. “I didn’t jump into Normandy, but I jumped everywhere else until I got wounded.” He told war stories about how the Army screwed this or that silly thing up. Same type of stuff they’ve done to every vet! He was tested in mortars, rifles, machine guns, and it was machine guns that he was worst at. Guess which unit he ended up in? Machine guns. He told me about his last jump, into Holland I think. It was delayed, and for reasons that still aren’t clear to him, they made him jump out in broad daylight. He said it made everyone sitting ducks. You can shoot at Paratroopers while they are under canopy. The Germans did.
He said that he got shot in the head during that battle. He should have died, but his Company Commander got him into a jeep and back to an aid station. They managed to save his life, but not his vision. He’s lived in the dark since 1944, when my dad was 2 years old.
He told me all about the things he did, and then he told me all about the things I could do. He just knew, in his heart, that had I been faced with the dangers he had faced, I’d do just as well as he and his buddies did. I was a Paratrooper, you see, and an American soldier. It didn’t matter that he’d grown up in the Depression and I’d grown up a pampered son of the richest, laziest nation the world had ever seen. (My words, not his) I was a Paratrooper, and a soldier. If the balloon went up, I’d march to the sound of the guns and destroy our country’s enemies and set the world to rights. Just as he and his buddies did.
I’m still not sure that I could have done as he said. But I’d have rather died than have let the old Vet down. So if you live in Michigan City, and you know who I’m talking about, and he’s still alive, go shake his hand. Tell him that the young Paratrooper he met all those years ago still thinks about him. If he’s gotten his final discharge and has gone on to his heavenly reward, thank his family for me. Two hours in his presence told me more about what it means to be a soldier and a Paratrooper than 4 years of living it.
I was all set to make fun of these two ladies. They’re so perky, and they speak in a lot of jargon.
So I went to their web site and found some really useful info about them. They sound like really decent people. They aren’t just trying to keep the mental cases out of jail, they are trying to teach cops how to deal with them in a constructive fashion.
Think of it this way. You are a cop, called to the scene of a man (or woman) who’s gone around the bend. He’s not making sense, and he’s scared. He might interpret anything as an attack, and he just might grab a weapon and go out on the street to silence those voices in his head. What do you do? You can’t walk away. You could pepper spray him, beat him down with your baton, dogpile him, and take him to jail. But that’s not the best solution for everyone. The cops could get hurt. The subject is certainly going to get hurt. And the community isn’t served by this sort of solution.
What these ladies are trying to do is teach the police officers how to recognize mental illness, and how to deal with it by getting these people to places where they can get the kind of treatment they need. When it works well, no one gets hurt, and the cops get a potential problem off the street and into a secure facility. Aside from the obvious benefit of not getting hurt and not having to beat the crap out of a crazy person, the whole process saves a lot of time for the police officer. Arrests cause a lot of paperwork. Using force causes a lot of paperwork. Testifying in court costs time. Driving a guy to the local mental health treatment center and dropping him off costs nothing, has little in the way of paperwork, and takes almost no time at all.
I’d also bet good money that even a crazy person will remember how he was treated by the police the next time he has a crisis. How much easier is a person to deal with when they remember that the person in with the badge and gun is the person who helped them get rid of the voices last time? Do we really want the mentally disturbed to associate police with getting beat up?
There are amazing medicines nowadays that will really help people with mental problems. When people get the kind of meds and support they need, they can be productive and healthy members of society. Why waste jail cells and court time punishing a person for something that they can’t control? Why force cops to get hurt, or to unnecessarily hurt someone else when a bit of training will serve us all better.
It’s things like this that remind me that heroes don’t always come in standard forms. Sometimes they are perky older ladies who speak in jargon. I’m glad people like this exist.
It would have been nice if Barney Hajiro had been able to receive his Medal of Honor when he earned it in 1944. He had to wait until 2000 to receive it during the Clinton ordered Pentagon review of Asian-American WWII soldiers.
This is as good a reminder as any of the fact that just because Bill Clinton was a lying whoremonger doesn’t mean he was all bad. Whatever his reason for ordering this review, it sounds like Barney Hajiro was well deserving of his award. As is typical of the type, Barney didn’t make a fuss about his actions.