Most appalling thing I’ve ever seen. Police violence in the US is truly out of control. A Manteca, California officer kills a man, Ernesto Duenez, Jr., in his front yard. I’ve attached the graphic video here (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LhnY17F_eiQ) if you’d like to see the dash-cam video from Officer Moody’s car. I will warn you, it is violent, graphic and shocking.
I didn’t know anything about this incident before I saw the video. It certainly seems as if the cop was waiting for the victim, but there was no indication from the video that he was dangerous. Even assuming Duenez was dangerous, I believe the shooting was completely unwarranted. Of course, the police department believed otherwise and cleared Officer Moody of any wrongdoing. According to the police Duenez was armed and dangerous and wanted in connection with a domestic violence incident earlier in the day. The cops say he was a known gang member and Moody claims he brandished a knife as he exited the truck. It looks to me like he was simply trying to get out of the truck as ordered. Less than 5 seconds pass from the time the cop jumps out of his car and Duenez being shot. Hardly enough time for him to make a threatening move toward the officer. You can see Duenez (after being shot 11 times) appears to be dead, yet when additional cops arrive on scene, they roll him over and handcuff him. Not once do the police check the man for a pulse. Some minutes pass before one of the officers asks about calling paramedics, and another minute or more before someone requests a life-saving kit be brought to him. By the time paramedics begin CPR (interrupted at least once by the cops as they continue to search through Duenez’ clothing) he is clearly dead, though CPR continues until he is put on a gurney and moves out of the frame.
On the silver-lining side, the family did win the wrongful death suit, receiving $2.2 million. Still, it doesn’t really help the family. I’m sure they would prefer to have their husband/father/brother/son rather than money. I’m sure they would prefer that Officer Moody was in jail, or at least that he was no longer a cop. I don’t want a cop like that protecting me!
I’m curious though. What do you think? Are US cops out of control with their use of deadly force?
For more info on this case, here are a couple more links.