So, Another Shooting, More Knee-Jerk Reactions, and More Riots

Sunday, August 23, 2020 – Kenosha, Wisconsin

***See Update Below ***

Police responded to a domestic disturbance at around 5:11 pm. At some point, cellphone video captures the scene of Jacob Blake walking around the front of a grey SUV with two officers following him, their guns drawn, and pointed at him.

Blake opens the driver’s door and, leans inside. One officer grabs the back of his shirt – gun still in his hand. Then, multiple shots are heard.

And, as per is usual now, during the next 24 hours, we are spoon-fed the same narrative a thousand times over from a thousand different sources – a cop shot “another” unarmed black man…IN THE BACK!!!

Without waiting for any facts, or any additional information, the politicians cannot wait to stick their faces in front of a microphone and say something stupid.

From Gropin’ Joe Biden:
“the nation wakes up yet again with grief and outrage that yet another Black American is a victim of excessive force,”

From Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers:
“While we do not have all the details yet, what we know for certain is he is not the first Black man or person to have been shot or injured or mercilessly killed at the hands of individuals in law enforcement in our state or in our country.”

Good job, Governor. Was it your GOAL to help set off riots in one of your cities? Because, you sure have them now!

The most sensible quote I could find from a politician was this quote from Senator Tammy Baldwin:
“The video from Kenosha of a Black man being shot is terrifying to watch and we need a full and independent investigation by the Wisconsin Department of Justice to get all the facts about this police shooting. As we pray for Jacob Blake to live, let peaceful protests lead the way to the answers we seek, and justice.”

Thank You, Senator, for being one of the sole rational voices concerning this incident, and pointing out that:

  1. We do NOT have all the facts,
  2. A full and independent investigation is needed (and is going to happen)

So, what do we know at this point? Honestly, not much. We know there was a domestic call. We know the cops were clearly trying to detain Blake. (That would be why the guns were out.) We know that, clearly, Blake was not surrendering to police.

Oh, and by the way, have you seen this video yet??

This video clearly shows Blake fighting with the cops prior to breaking free, and walking around to the front of his car. Thank you, TMZ, for having the balls to post another video from yet another angle that fully debunks the notion that Blake was an “innocent” black man, shot in the back.

So, what don’t we know about this incident?

Well, this is where the rubber meets the road, and the news media doesn’t dare sniff around. But, let’s be clear – do we want TRUTH, or do we want another “cops are racists, and shoot black men in the back for no reason” narrative? There are plenty of questions yet to be answered.

Did you know that Blake had a warrant for his arrest? From the Chicago Tribune:

Court records show Blake has a pending criminal case that started last month. Online court records indicate Kenosha County prosecutors charged Blake on July 6 with third-degree sexual assault, trespassing and disorderly conduct in connection with domestic abuse. An arrest warrant was issued for Blake the following day.

That sheds a new light on things. No, it’s not a reason to shoot a guy. But, it definitely gives me an idea of why he may have been fighting the cops.

Other questions to ask:

  1. Why did Blake fight the cops instead of PEACEFULLY placing his hands behind his back, and allowing himself to be handcuffed?

There cannot be any doubt that the cops had wanted Blake to do something, and he refused. So, the cops attempted to bring him under control. And, as we see in the alternate video angle, Blake chose to fight rather than comply.

2. Why did Blake, after breaking free from the cops, decide it was a good idea to walk around, and reach into a car while two cops had guns pointed at him?

What kind of stupid, asshat move is that? When cops have their damned guns pointed at you, STOP MOVING, and do what they say!! Rather than harping on how many people are shot by cops each year, let’s ask how many DON’T get shot because they complied with cops’ commands?

3. Why did the cops draw their guns in the first place?

This is a genuine mystery to me and I’m sure it will be a relevant fact in the case. I had many a suspect slip out of my grasp. But, mostly, I just chased them back down, and grabbed them again. Was it poor training and tactics on their part – an over-reaction to having a man physically resisting them? OR, did these cops see or hear something that made them decide that they needed to draw firearms? Did Blake indicate that he had a weapon of some sort? It’s unknown at the moment but I feel it will be an important clue.

4. Why were the cops so reluctant to charge Blake, and tackle him?

From the video, it seems to me that there was plenty of opportunity to run up from behind, and dog-pile Blake. This brings us back to the question of why they had their guns out. What did they hear or see that made them keep their distance from Blake while holding them at gunpoint?

5. Why did the officer fire?

No, it wasn’t because Blake was black. If that was the case, then they could have just shot him the moment he became “uppity.” Or, they could have shot him as he was walking around the car. In fact, if his color was the reason he was shot, then why would the cops stop shooting after he was down? After all, there were a bunch of other black people around. It seems like a pretty “target rich” environment if the sole purpose is killing black folks. But I digress.

Why did he shoot? Did he see something in the car? Had Blake threatened to be going to get a weapon? He looked to be reaching into the car rather than trying to climb in. OR – was it sympathetic reflex on the part of the officer. I’ve seen video footage of this happen in the past. Under stress, when one hand grabs something, the other hand naturally wants to mimic the muscle action. If you have a gun in one hand with a finger on the trigger, and you grab something in the other hand, this can cause an accidental discharge.

I know there were several shots fired. So, the next question would be whether it was one officer firing all the shots, or one shot fired from the officer grabbing Blake, and other officers firing because they heard the shot? Either of these scenarios would be bad for the cops. It’s also why I always taught my academy students that, when you’re going up to arrest a suspect, you holster your gun. You don’t try to wrestle with someone with a gun in your hand (unless, in the course of wrestling, you find yourself in a situation where you could lose your life).

I’m not trying to make a judgment of whether the cops are right or wrong. I’m simply asking questions that are too inconvenient to ask if you want to pitch the narrative that “another unarmed black man was killed by cops.”

Here’s one thing I’m damned sure of: One person could have prevented Jacob Blake from being shot in the back. That person was Jacob Blake. At some point, I’m willing to bet money that one of those cops said, “You’re under arrest.” It was probably sometime before that scuffle happened behind the SUV. And, if Jacob Blake had responded to those words by turning around, placing his hands behind his back, and allowing himself to be handcuffed, he’d be sitting around talking shit with his fellow inmates in the county lockup rather than recovering from gunshot wounds.

And, Kenosha would not be burning…


I’ve done some more research, and found a couple of links that explain:

  1. A witness at the scene stated that they heard the officers yelling “DROP THE KNIFE” as they followed Blake around the SUV. This would be consistent with my question above concerning why they did not re-engage hand to hand. If they believed he had a weapon, they would have kept their distance.

2. Additionally, it would seem that Mr Blake had a history of resisting cops.



Brian Whiddon is a 15 year police veteran and author of BLUE LIVES MATTER – The Heart Behind The Badge. Get your copy from his publisher, Amazon, and wherever books are sold.

Published by Brian Whiddon

Get an old former cop's point of view on today's issues that affect public safety and the civil society. Straight, honest commentary without politically correct filters.

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