Law enforcement fatally shot a man after he waved a gun toward bystanders and pointing it at himself.
The police shooting, which happened Saturday morning near downtown Las Vegas, was the second in under 24-hours.
Las Vegas’ Metropolitan Police Department spokesman said the man was in a standoff from 6 until 7 in the morning. Neighbors initially called police because of a domestic disturbance and fired two shots before the cops arrived. One shot happened inside the home and other while he was leaving the apartment. None of the family members inside were injured.
When cops showed up, the man walked through the neighborhood and refused commands to drop it.
“The suspect was armed and waving the gun around toward citizens and law enforcement,” the spokesman said.
“They attempted de escalation by talking to him and trying to get him to give up. Trying anything they could to bring this to a peaceful resolution.”
No one has determined if cops used a stun gun or bean-bag shotgun before killing him.
The day before, police shot a man they believed stabbed two women and ran away carrying a knife. The suspect, Caleb Rydlin Hill, 38, was taken to the hospital where is condition wasn’t clear.
When released from the hospital, he faces charges of attempted murder.
Behind these, and other incidents, is the constant fear that a gun might be present.
According to criminal justice experts, cops have good reason to be afraid. America has a large amount of civilian-owned guns — more than any nation. Based on recent estimates, there are more weapons in America than there are people. That ratio brings a constant threat to law enforcement.
“Police officers need to know of and trained to be conscious that every single person they come in contact with may carry a gun,” Nicholas Wooldridge, a noted Las Vegas Criminal Defense lawyer said. “That’s true for a 911 call or a barking dog call and domestic violence. It’s true for everything.”
The fact remains that America has more police shootings that other developed countries. A 2015 analysis by the UK media center, The Guardian, found that American police kill more in days than other nations do in years. The differentness cannot be explained away by population. America has six times as many residents as England, but based on the Guardian’s count, America has hundreds of times the fatal police shootings.
Experts and research have shown the abundance of guns in America play a role. Stricter gun laws could help reduce fatal shootings by cops.
Restrictions on firearms lead to fewer deaths elsewhere. A 2016 review of 10 nations and published in Epidemiologic Reviews shows legal restrictions on owning and purchased guns tend to be following by a drop in gun violence, an indicator that restricting access to weapons can save lives.
We don’t have proof that a causative effect exists between stricter gun laws and fewer police shootings. At the least, the possibility should be a part of the larger discussion about the amount of police violence in America.