Six Months Since Police Shot an Innocent 80-Year-Old Man, and Still No Explanation

80-year-old Isaac Singletary had a habit of chasing drug dealers off his property. Then, one fateful day, he emerged with a pistol to threaten two dealers that were creeping around his yard. They turned out to be undercover cops, and Singletary was promptly shot and killed.

That was six months ago, and the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office is almost ready to explain what the hell happened:
While a Jacksonville Sheriff's Office review of the shooting is scheduled for next week, State Attorney Harry Shorstein said in April that while he was very concerned with how undercover operations like this one were conducted, he would not file criminal charges against the officers. [News4Jax.com]
That's how this works, folks. The determination that police weren't at fault tends to emerge quickly, while actual reports explaining what happened take several months. How they figure out that the police were innocent without yet completing the report is a trade secret, I guess.

Perhaps they're right that the police didn’t do anything illegal, but that's a huge part of the problem. It should be illegal for police to dress up as drug dealers and trespass on private property. And it should be even more illegal for police to shoot innocent people who don’t know they're the police.

If police act so much like criminals that well-intentioned citizens can’t tell the difference, those officers should not be permitted to defend themselves with deadly force. So, once again, if these officers' actions turn out to be legal, it's time to change the law.
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lawrence v texas

While I agree with most of what you said, Finn, the Lawrence v. Texas Supreme court decision did make those laws unconstitutional.

I'll plead guilty ...

to the charge of cowardice in not coming out as a user of cannabis. I've suffered way too much already from these alcohol supremacist thugs.

I must be missing something- since when do cops have the right to go onto private property without the permission of the owner without a warrant. No warrant was mentioned. Perhaps you could clarify this, Scott?

No, I can't!

I can't clarify this. It's bullshit. You'll have to ask the prosecutor who's so sure these officers did nothing wrong.

Coming out

Sorry; I didn't make myself clear.

There's obviously no cowardice in not coming out as a user of cannabis. I'm an old and staunch advocate against self-incrimination, to the extent that I say you should literally not speak a word if detained by the cops as a pedestrian. That's why I had printed up and distributed my "Dear Law Enforcement Officer" cards.

But probably you -- and more than 99% of the people in this country -- can come out as a bona fide DRUG USER solely on the grounds of drinking coffee or cola, or occasionally drinking a beer, or smoking a cigarette.

Maybe I should get out T-shirts that on the front say "I Take Drugs for Pleasure", and on the back have a picture of a caffeine molecule.

Finn

Well the obvious is stated

The obvious is stated it is time for to laws to change all the way around on some subjects, The power that these officers have should be more restricted and should be punished for their crimes however considering that our government in majority is crooked that will not change because then the government would also have to fix themselves, and you know they won't let the people fix it or we would be hit with the charge for treason, or terrorism, along with inciting a national riot, which we by the constitution are given the right to do. Not to mention the laws on Cannabis that need to be changed, but the government refuses to acknowledge the possible benefits that could and would accrue if things changed.........
Do we still live in a Democracy ?

Apparently not so obvious

No, we do NOT live in a democracy. We never HAVE lived in a democracy. We live in a REPUBLIC. There is a significant difference and the problem is that those in power have not only twisted things around to where we are verging on a police state but that they have also exempted themselves from the same laws.

Reply to comment | StoptheDrugWar.org

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So much confusion

As a Ex-Narcotics Officer, I can honestly say that there were many times I questioned if what I was doing was legal or even morally right. I do in some ways feel as though it is entrapment; but, with THAT said, the term "entrapment" means to coheres or force someone else to break the law who otherwise had no intention of breaking it on their own. So I decided to solve my own delima. Anyone who wanted to buy drugs from ME, MUST approach ME and ask for it, thus eliminating my moral conflict of entrapment. I certainly DO NOT agree with the Officers trespassing on Private Property which ultimately created the problem. I do believe that Mr. Singletary had a right to defend his property, but certainly went about it the wrong way. What was "the threat"? 2 men, standing in his front yard? Not stealing his property, not damaging his property, not making threats to do anything to Mr. Singletary or his property. I mean should cops pull guns on people they stop for speeding, even though that driver may have a gun or want to kill him? Horseshit.. I wasn't there, so I will not draw any conclusions as to what the conversation or mood was. I certainly believe that the Officers were MORE at fault than Mr. Singletary, especially when they DID NOT identify themselves as Police Officers, which could have and more likely would have prevented the incident. I agree that Mr. Singletary did not know that his trespassers were Officers, but at the time he confronted THEM, they imposed NO THREAT that justified him pointing a gun. With that said, the Officer should have immediately identified himself. There are laws in most states that prevent a Police Officer from being held civilly liable as long as the Officer was acting within the scope of his Employment at the time of the incident. This to me is HORSESHIT.. Though it protects Officers from being sued personally by just any scumbag, it should NOT apply if the Officer is found to be wrong. I firmly believe that if a Police Officer shoots, kills, or otherwise harasses an innocent person, he should be prosecuted like any civilian, GAME OVER... Most Police officers, I believe are good people trying to do the right thing, but I certainly do agree, that there are some who should NEVER wear a badge.

I hope at least 1 policeman

I hope at least 1 policeman was killed in retaliation for this.

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