Hero Colorado Cops Kill Stranded Driver, Lie About It ... You Know, The Usual
On June 10, Christian Glass crashed his car on a dirt road near Silver Plume, Colorado. He called 911, and 70 minutes later, a Clear Creek County deputy had shot and killed him.
On the 911 call, Glass sounded frightened and confused. He told the operator: "I’m in a 2007 Honda Pilot. I will not be fine on my own. You’re sending someone right? You tracked my location? My car is stuck under a bush … I love you. You’re my light right now. I’m really scared. I’m sorry.”
The Boulder resident was an amateur geologist with knives and a hammer in his car from a recent trip to Utah. He offered to get rid of them when the cops arrived: "I have two knives and a hammer and a rubber mallet. I’m not dangerous. I’ll keep my hands completely visible. I understand this is a dodgy situation."
The dispatcher told the deputies that Glass "wasn't making much sense." It seems as if he was suffering from a mental health crisis, which the police can only ever escalate into a physical health crisis.
\u201cThe Safer American Plan, aimed at reducing gun crime, is based on a "simple notion," says Pres. Biden: "The answer is not to defund the police; it's fund the police." He adds, "We expect them to do everything...to protect us, to be psychologists, to be sociologists."\u201d— CBS News (@CBS News) 1661889198
When discussing throwing more money at cops like an enthusiastic strip club patron, President Joe Biden said last month, "The answer is not to defund the police; it's fund the police ... We expect them to do everything ... to protect us, to be psychologists, to be sociologists."
Anyone who imagines modern cops serving at all competently as psychologists, sociologists, or any type of "ologist" probably also expects fine dining from Red Lobster. Although in fairness, while the fish might make you queasy, not even the worst "endless shrimp" experience ends with a bullet in your head.
Police aren't trained to understand. They're trained to subdue, most often aggressively. When the police arrived, Glass offered to throw the knives and hammer out of the window. They rejected this deescalation tactic and instead demanded he leave his vehicle. He placed his keys on the dashboard — indicating that he wasn't about to flee, although he wasn't suspected of a crime — and told the cops that he wanted to remain in the car.
“Please push me out, drag me out, I’ll follow you to a police station,” Glass told the officers. “I’m so scared.”
The deputy, whose name has not been released by authorities, yelled at Glass.
“You need to step out of the car now. Step out of the car,” he said. “That is a lawful order. Step out of the car now or you’ll be removed from the vehicle.”
Glass responded, “I’m so scared … You’re not communicating clearly with me. I don’t understand why I have to come out.”
Within three minutes, the deputy threatened to break the window, yelling again, ”step out of the car!”
Why is this asshole so angry? Glass wasn't pulled over for going 90 in an orphanage-crossing zone. He called 911 for help. The police's murder camera footage shows Glass putting his palms together as if in prayer and pleading, “Lord, please don’t let them break the window!”
The deputy draws his weapon when the Sherlock sees the knife that Glass repeatedly told everyone he had is in his car. Glass throws the knife to the other side of the car and puts his hands up. He is doing everything possible to show he's not a threat. At one point, he even pitifully makes a heart shape with his hands.
Soon officers from Clear Creek, Idaho Springs, Georgetown Police, Colorado State Patrol, and the Colorado Division of Gaming were on the scene. This didn't improve the situation.
The cops are heard speculating that Glass is possibly "on something," which probably only aroused their contempt. They seemingly lacked the empathy to manage what actual psychologist Dr. Max Wachtel, who viewed the footage, said "sounded like a delusional disorder or a delusion that’s part of a psychotic disorder like schizophrenia.”
“That is not the way to handle it, whether it’s drugs or it’s something organic, like a schizophrenia or a delusional disorder – coming at the person hard and aggressively, that is only going to make the situation worse,” Wachtel said.
Glass might still be alive today if his car had stopped in Denver, which has a co-responder program called STAR. Instead of police, it sends trained mental health professionals to certain non-violent 911 calls. Despite what Republicans might suggest, the program has reduced crime.
Instead, Clear Creek County Deputy Andrew Buen held a terrified Glass at gunpoint, broke his window, fired bean bag rounds at him, and tased him. A marshal of the Georgetown Police Department is seen on the video reaching inside Glass's car, and when Glass turns in his direction, Buen fires the five gunshots that kill him. Glass was 22 years old.
The day after killing Glass, the police issued a typically self-serving statement that's a combination of exaggeration and lies:
Deputies were able to break out the car windows and remove one knife. The suspect rearmed himself with a rock and a second knife. Deputies deployed less-lethal bean bags, and Taser with negative results. The suspect eventually tried to stab an officer and was shot. The suspect was pronounced deceased on scene.
Calling 911 doesn't make someone a "suspect." An investigation is ongoing but the cops involved are still in uniform.
During his law enforcement tongue bath, Biden claimed he didn't know "any police officer that feels good about the fact that there may be a lousy cop." In reality, supposed "good" cops have walked off the job in protest whenever "bad" cops are held accountable. The president should share this footage of Glass's death with all his "good" cop friends.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. Once, he wrote a novel called “Mahogany Slade,” which you should read or at least buy. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."