Special Report

Epidemic: Unjustified Police Shootings

January 24, 2018 by Mikel Rastegar in Special Report   Leave a Comment
Thumbnail for: Epidemic: Unjustified Police Shootings

Deaths by Police Shooting

In 2017, 987 humans have been shot and killed by police in the US. That’s 24 more fatal shootings than in 2016, and 8 less than 2015. Countless more animals are killed every year. So many, in fact that it has become an epidemic.

“Mental illness” was ruled a critical factor in one quarter of the 987 deaths caused by police shootings in 2017.

Ironically, the “mental illness” was ruled against the victim who was shot and not the officer in every single case. Shouldn’t a trigger-happy cop be evaluated for mental health as well? Yes, they should.

Problem: Tactical Errors

In a shockingly large percentage of the police shootings, a multitude of tactical errors were made leading up to the shooting. In the most flagrant cases, the police actually shot and killed the person who called them in the first place!

This brings into question whether the shooting could have been avoided altogether using different tactics. Police should be trained to assess whether a citizen should be deemed a threat more critically.

Solution: De-Escalation Training

The use of deadly force should only be used when the police themselves are being directly threatened with deadly force. Otherwise, a de-escalation tactic would better serve the community.

Unfortunately, most law enforcement agencies do not believe de-escalation training is necessary for their officers.

Clearly, there needs to be a grassroots community movement pleading for the local law enforcement agencies to use less deadly force and train for de-escalation when they arrive at the scene of an alleged crime.

No Accountability

To make matters worse, in an overwhelmingly large number of cases, the shooting officer under investigation ends up being found not guilty.

Less than one percent of officers suspected of an unjustified shooting end up being charged, and the number of convictions in those cases equals zero.

This lack of conviction further compounds what is quickly becoming an epidemic in America. Many of the highly publicized cases end up with protests and even riots in the streets by communities fed up with the problem.

LA Police Commission Cracking Down

In Los Angeles steps are being taken. Los Angeles Police Commission appears to be judging officers’ decisions to use deadly force more critically.

In Los Angeles approximately one person is shot by the police every four days. That number is fairly low compared to other metropolitan cities like Chicago, but that hasn’t stopped the Police Commission from instating a five-member civilian panel to oversee the LAPD’s behavior in cases where police shootings occur.

Most officers go through their entire career without ever firing a shot in the line of duty. However, there are a select few that have been labelled “frequent shooters”. Even though these officers make up 1% of the force, they’re involved in 20% of the shootings. This is the reason for the watchdog group.

We’re Here to Help

Did the police arrest you for a crime in the greater Los Angeles area? We cannot stress enough the importance of consulting and retaining a lawyer to protect your rights, privacy and future.

Need a Criminal Defense Attorney? CALL NOW: 310-274-6529

Seppi Esfandi is an Expert Criminal Defense Attorney who has over 17 years of practice defending a variety of criminal cases.

Read our Client Reviews


[1] https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/national/police-shootings-2017/

Criminal Defense Help

  • Employment After a Felony Conviction

    Employment After a Felony Conviction

    Avoid a Felony at All Cost A felony conviction can be devastating to your search for gainful employment, as most reputable companies and desired job positions will merit some form of background check. Depending on the nature of your felony, there are certain jobs that can be impossible to get. For instance, if you have... Read More »
  • Can I Be Charged With Auto Theft for a Rental Car?

    Can I Be Charged With Auto Theft for a Rental Car?

    Intent is Everything A key element of an auto theft crime is what an offender intends to do with the vehicle after taking it. Typically, an offender is guilty of auto theft when he takes the vehicle of another with the intention of permanently depriving him of it. Deciding later to keep the property an... Read More »
  • Is There Such a Thing as ‘Accidental Shoplifting’?

    Is There Such a Thing as ‘Accidental Shoplifting’?

    Shoplifting in California It often seems like a minor crime – just a two dollar candy bar or something small can’t hurt that much, right? However, shoplifting tends to have a ripple effect on other consumers and the rest of the economy. Experts estimate that each American family pays a “crime tax” of about $500... Read More »
  • What Constitutes as ‘Impaired Driving’ in California?

    What Constitutes as ‘Impaired Driving’ in California?

    DUI and Alcohol California Vehicle Code 23152(b) makes it illegal to drive with a BAC of 0.08% or higher. Also California won’t tolerate any amount of alcohol (specifically, 0.01% BAC or higher) for drivers who are younger than 21 years old. Drivers who are found to have a lower BAC can still be charged with... Read More »
  • What Crimes are Associated with ‘Road Rage’?

    What Crimes are Associated with ‘Road Rage’?

    Road Rage is Deadly Road rage often boils down to an accident or some kind of confrontation between drivers. These confrontations have a tendency to turn violent. For example, if a driver “cuts off” or quickly maneuvers into another driver’s lane, the driver who was cut off may follow the other driver closely to a... Read More »
Defense Expertise

Recent Victories

Loading Quotes...

Videos:  Criminal Defense Attorney Seppi Esfandi

Best law firms