Terence Crutcher – Was The Use of Force By Officer Shelby Reasonable In The Circumstance?

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]You will have seen it all over the media in the past few days about the shooting of Terence Crutcher by Officer Shelby who is now facing manslaughter charges.  I’m writing this article to make you think about whether the use of force was reasonable in the circumstance and how this could have an impact on your life.

First of all you might to want to watch the video below.  Please be aware that it does contain graphic scenes that you might find disturbing.[/vc_column_text][vc_video link=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gkOOyNHVToU” align=”center”][vc_column_text]I’ve read several articles where it says “Police officer shoots unarmed man”.  With tensions already running high in the US with police shooting, I’m sure headings like these are done to sell papers.  What I want you to consider are the facts:

  • Crutcher was known to the police
  • Officer Shelby asked on numerous times for Crutcher to stand still
  • Before he is fatally wounded, Crutcher can be seen leaning in to the vehicle.

 

Officer Shelby has the right to use reasonable force.  The easiest to think about this is by two other words: necessary and proportionate.  After numerous times of being asked to stand still was it necessary for Officer Shelby to draw her weapon rather than a taser and therefore was shooting Crutcher proportionate to the threat he posed to Officer Shelby?

One thing over the next coming weeks which will be discussed is whether other Officers would have acted in the same manner.  So how does this event have an effect on your life….

Well let’s consider someone came up and threatened your husband, wife or children.  Your primary belief will to protect these at all costs.  Who could say how you would react.  Some people will reactions will be excessive in the circumstance do to “fear”.

When you sense the emotion of fear you will react in one of three ways: fight, flight or freeze.  This is controlled by your amygdala which is the emotional manager of your brain.  Had Officer Shelby or yourself been confronted with a similar situation in the past which would make her or you react in a specific way?

It is going to be interesting to follow the developments of this case to see whether Officer Shelby’s actions were reasonable in the circumstance.  As they say, the jury is out at the moment.  Unless you were physically there, it is very difficult to ascertain the facts.

One reason why my wife and children are taught Jiu-Jitsu is not only so they are able to protect themselves but also so you can train your brain to react how you want it to.  Believe it or not, your amygdala can be reprogrammed.

In my lessons we help students to understand what self-defence is and what governs the use of force as I would hate for one of my students to end up in the same position of Officer Shelby.

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