Man shot down by Houston Police

While the title of this post seems to indicate that an injustice has taken place, the course of the investigation will bear this out. To be sure though, any loss of human life must be viewed as a tragedy.

The Houston Chronicle ran a story on this unfortunate incident,
“HPD officer shoots, kills naked man who chased him”

After reading the story, I noticed some characteristics of police shootings (in Houston at least).

1) The perhaps understandable picture of outrage of the family of the deceased
311xinlinegallery.jpgHouston Chronicle

The picture of course shows the ones stand the most to lose, the kids.

2) The victim is a black man who was first tasered then shot

  • some actually think that the police have nothing better to do than to go around tasering and/or shooting black people for no good reason; given the history of race relations in this country I don’t blame them but their reactions makes me think of the boy who cried wolf.

3) Quanell X is somehow involved

  • Enough said. Though in this case his involvement is a head-scratcher given that there is no suspect who Quanell can convince to turn himself in so Mr. X can collect the reward money. I say this because Quanell, not to mention his Hispanic counterpart, Rodolfo X were uncharacteristically silent after Officer Rodney Johnson was killed in the line of duty by an undocumented immigrant.

4) An eyewitness (or 2 in some cases) has an account of the events which differs or contradicts the official police statement, which by the way, the people in the dead man’s community aren’t buying,

“You’ll have to come up with a better story than that!” one person shouted… Relatives at the scene Thursday afternoon were skeptical of the police officer’s version of the events.

5) The paper strangely left out the fact that the dead man (who was acting rowdy) weighed almost 300 pounds.

  • I’m not sure how much the police officer weighed but how do you control a non-compliant and naked 270 lb. man when even the taser doesn’t work?

6) Friends and family of the deceased are shocked that he would do any of the things in the police’s account (in this case getting undressed and chasing the police officer)

  • This from a cousin,

“Every time you saw him he had a smile on his face and he always wanted to give you a hug,” said Evelyn Swan, the slain man’s cousin. “He is not a rowdy person.”

  • From the man’s father,

Smith’s father, Raymond Sr., said he could not explain his son’s behavior as it was describe by police. He said that his son did not have a history of mental illness and was not on any medications.

7) The fond memories family members have of the deceased tend to ignore or conveniently forget the man’s past criminal record and/or prison time.

Court records show Smith had a criminal record dating to 1995–eight convictions, half of them on drug charges… and served almost all of a two-year prison sentence, records show.

  • I realize that the man’s history does not make the police’s account true, but it does not make it outrageous either. I like what the father said about medications in the face of his son’s most recent charge in 2003,

He pleaded guilty in June of that year to the manufacture an delivery of less than a gram of a controlled substance

I guess a controlled substance isn’t really medication?

While this is a sad, sad story it is one more reminder of a good rule of thumb: If a cop asks you to do something, do it.

Don’t get naked (allegedly), don’t run away (allegedly), and for sure don’t start chasing the cop (allegedly).

Remember, there are a lot more of them than there are of you.

21 Responses to Man shot down by Houston Police

  1. Gene says:

    Well, I remember a Pasadena cop telling me once, “We can do any damn thing we want to.”

    I think his point was with such options as thrown down weapons and the public’s unwavering support 0f our protectors in blue and his word against that of some minority or minor citizen (of whatever race) well, uh, …they can do any damn thing they want to.

    Texas, it’s a cop’s paradise.

  2. Laz says:

    Well it is one cop, it doesn’t mean they all have that kind of attitude.

    My point still holds: there are more of them than there are of you, so if one asks you to do something, do it, don’t run away or become belligerent.

    Gene, have you ever been pulled over by a cop? If so, how difficult was it to avoid being shot?

  3. Gene says:

    To those of us who respect the police officer (read cowe to them) like you and me, Laz, it’s not difficult at all to keep from getting shot.

    But to someone who understands that he is a free citizen and has constitutional rights such as enumerated in the 4th amendment, and doesn’t have to answer the cops questions, indignation can become deadly.

    In your story you use repeatedly the word “alleged”. That’s a good word. It means the cops probably made the whole thing up. Or do you think they would admit they were violating his rights?

    But it’s like I pointed out. It’s their word against yours and the powers that be usually take their word. The cop has tremendous power to intimidate, harass, and brutalize especially when he is not being videotaped.

    There are without a doubt many good police officers but there are also many who would feel at home in a gestapo state.

    I would suggest you read everything you can find on Brett Darrow. A young man who knows his rights and is an inspiration to everyone who has ever had to submit to police stops.

  4. Laz says:

    I wouldn’t call being respectful to authority being “cowed”. Being a “free citizen” does not give us the right to be a pain in the rear. I’ll have to cite the Apostle (who undoubtedly lived in far less civil times than we do) here,

    Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves.

    For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same

    Being respectful cannot hurt one’s cause if one is being intimidated by an officer.

    I used the word “alleged” because I wasn’t there, and well I don’t believe you were either. Understand that we will believe things based on our presuppositions. If we presuppose that cops are evil and like shooting people for the heck of it, then we will always come to that conclusion, it’s like rolling loaded dice.

  5. Gene says:

    Seems to me that in most cases it’s the police who are being a pain in the rear and I think anyone who has ever been stopped for no cause except that the cop has the “authority” in his mind, would agree.

    Paul said let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. Does that mean the policeman must be subject to the higher powers also?

    What is the highest power and ordinance in America? Is it not the Consitution? When a cop violates your constitutional rights, is it wrong to inform him that he is doing so?

    Our highest obligation is to God and not to men. The Constitution states that our rights are God given and not the gift of men.

    This wrong headed teaching of the unlimited submission to man’s authority without question because of Romans 13 is the tool communist and fascist tyrants used in the last century to enslave two thirds of the world.

    Jesus came to set men free not to enslave us to the authority of men.

    Yet here in America, which was founded on rebellion against authority, by the way, this same insideous doctrine is being touted to make us docile, obedient slaves to the New World Order.

  6. Laz says:

    I didn’t say unlimited submission did I? Clearly if the government forbids us from teaching about the Gospel, we are to obey God (see Acts 5:29)

    Please don’t read things in the comments which are simply not there.

    Peter also wrote to people under very real persecution,

    Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority,

    or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right.

    For such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men. –1 Peter 2:13-15

    People might twist this to oppress others but the fact remains that the Holy Spirit inspired Peter to pen this, and I’m not sure what the “New World Order” has to do with anything.

  7. Gene says:


    The New World Order has to do with control. And it starts at the local level.

    Nowhere in the bible does it state that our only right is to preach the gospel and that we must submit in all other cases. That is a false teaching and it is the reason the Church was thrown out of France during the French Revolution. Because of the church’s complicity with the civil government in enslaving men.

  8. Laz says:

    Again, don’t put words in my mouth (wrists?). I’m not limiting permissible civil disobedience to just preaching the gospel. I used that specific example because it is the illustration given in the book of Acts.

    So how do you interpret Peter’s words quoted in my last comment?

  9. Gene says:


    In the movie “Braveheart” the king had an ordinance that he and/or his soldiers had the right to “first night” with a bride. Was Peter aknowledging this as a legitimate right of Kings? Would he have endorsed this as a lawful insitution of men?

    Or are there areas where we are oblidged to resist rulers? Indeed to take up the sword?

    “Let the saints be joyful in glory; let them sing aloud upon their beds. let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a twoedged sword in their hand; to execute vengeance upon the heathen, and punishment upon the people; to bind their kings with chains and their nobles with fetters of iron; to execute upon them the judgement written. this honor have all the saints. Praise ye the Lord.” Psalms 149-5-9

    Isn’t it interesting that Thomas Jefferson said the Constitution was intended to bind the rulers with chains?

    “If thou seet the oppression of the poor, and violent perverting of judgement and justice in a province. marvel not at the matter. for he that is higher than the highest regardeth: and there be higher than they. moreover the profit of the earth is for all. the King himself is served by the field.” Ecc 5-8-9

    Isn’t it plain in this scripture that the King, outside of his lawful authority, is no more than anyone else? And is himself under authority?

    Of course if you think that we should be docile, obedient sheep to every law and whim of men(excepting the preaching of the gospel), then you should stop celebrating the 4th of July. The founding fathers were rebellious evildoers and we should return to the authority of the Queen or King of England.

  10. Laz says:

    That’s a pretty long non-answer

  11. JT says:

    Gene, you are fighting the wrong fight my man:

    Eph: 6: 12 will back me up

    That being said, if any governor forces your wife to bed him on the first night of marriage, and makes this law, I will take up arms right beside you. Until then, I am more worried about people going to hell than I am a cop asking if I got pot in my car.

    People use the New World Order to strike fear in the Christian’s Hearts. But I ain’t afraid, my God is bigger than that. No matter what, I will serve him. “Though the heavens may fall” I will serve him.

    Stop using worldly fear tactics, and start preaching about what people should be afraid of, going to hell.

  12. Gene says:


    Don’t forget Eph 5-8-11, where we are commanded to expose the works of darkness. This darkness works through men. It is men who are murdering, stealing, destroying, and tyranizing. If our nation is attacked by outside forces, are you going to rebuke the principalities in heaven, or are you going to take up arms and defend your land against flesh and blood enemies?

    Don’t be deceived, my brother. The flesh and blood rulers of this world are working in consort with evil spirits. The earthly rulers promoting the New World Order would like you to direct your attention to unseen forces instead of noticing what they are doing. They are attempting through misinterpretation of scripture to lull you to sleep. Don’t fall for it. They are working behind the scenes constantly to bring about their agenda.

    Satan quoted scripture. The devil knows the bible. Don’t be ignorant of his wiles.

    Don’t forget that while the Catholic Church was busy pretending to be a spiritual force in the world, communbist Russia and China were busy enslaving two thirds of thre world, including most of “christian” Europe.

  13. JT says:

    I had a long post written out for you Gene, because you are quoting scripture that has nothing to do with rising up against tyrants.

    But I will just ask you this. If you believe God’s word is telling you to rebel, what is your take on Ephesians 6:5?

  14. Gene says:

    Before I answer your question answer mine.

    Do you think we should apologize to England for rebelling and rising up against their rule because we were evidently, according to your interpretation acting against the will of God and the commands of holy scripture. (which icidentally are not commands but social opinions of Peter and Paul, who also didn’t think that slavery was any big thing)

    And should we as christians have nothing to do with the celebration of the 4th of July?

  15. Gene says:

    Also to you rebellious Texans out there, should Texas rightfully be returned to Mexico?

  16. JT says:

    Ok, so you just told me that the Bible isn’t the basis of your argument and has no bearing on your beliefs, now we can talk history, my favorite subject.

    These fights were against actual opposition. You are making one up, to scare people. Until it is real, I don’t care. You are able to post on this site. You have freedom my man. When that is taken away, then start something.

    Alex Jones drives a $50,000 car. And good for him. But the fact is, fear sells. And I ain’t buying.

  17. Gene says:

    That was a short non answer.

  18. Laz says:

    Who’s Alex Jones?

  19. Gene says:

    Laz, Do what I did. Look hm up.

  20. JT says:

    I’m sorry Gene: No.

  21. Pingback: How to Avoid Getting Shot by the Police « Last Row

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