Can cops legally shoot you for any reason?

One year ago on Thanksgiving, a Paradise CA cop shot a motorist who was exiting his wrecked car.  The cop claimed that he accidentally pulled out his weapon, accidentally aimed his weapon at the motorist, and accidentally shot the motorist. (The motorist eventually died from his gunshot wound).  The cop was not prosecuted because “he is human and humans make mistakes”.  There’s a little more to the story that’s not on this clip.  It seems that because cops are trained to shoot twice (double tap), if they only shoot you with one bullet, it must be an accident. This story stunned me because it seemed to imply that cops have a free pass to shoot anyone for any reason.  I can’t see how you can interpret this in any other way.

So it’s one year later and I followed it up and found that after protests, he was eventually tried and found guilty of involuntary manslaughter. So, if citizens protest wrongful shootings, it’s possible that cops will have to stand trial for shooting you.  The cop, Patrick Feaster, is supposed to be sentenced in December.  He only faces up to 5 years in jail for killing someone.

Note that his fellow officers defended his actions.  Of course they did.  It’s us vs. them.  And of course, his dirt-bag lawyer is trying to get another trial on a technicality. So, can cops legally shoot you for any reason?  We don’t yet know.

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