Saturday, May 30, 2009

Maybe he should learn to dodge bullet trains, too

Here's yet another case of cops eschewing their liabilities and covering their asses at the expense of an innocent. An officer in Clark County, Nevada, who apparently had a serious need to use a restroom, was driving at a staggering 109 miles an hour – with his lights and sirens off, effectively turning him into an invisible wheeled speeding torpedo. Sadly, someone was in the way, in the form of a pickup truck. The cop never had a chance, and died on impact. The pickup's driver, though rattled, lived – though he doesn't have much to cheer about still, considering HE's now the one those stupid cops are blaming for the entire incident.

In the moments before officer James Manor plowed into a pickup attempting a left turn, he was driving his patrol car 109 mph without flashing lights or siren, Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie said Wednesday.

The speed was the equivalent of traveling the length of a football field in about two seconds. It gave Manor little time to avoid hitting Calvin Darling's truck May 7. At the time of impact, after braking and trying to steer out of the way, Manor was still driving 90 mph.

Gillespie called Manor's speed in the 45-mph zone on Flamingo Road "excessive and unsafe," even if his lights and siren had been on. The facts of the accident probably will alter the charges Darling faces, the sheriff said.

While it's certainly expected that the "original charges" be put under investigation, it's worth noting just how desperate this police department is to lay the blame in the innocent Darling's lap instead of taking responsibility. Just luck at the charges:

Darling, 45, was arrested for driving under the influence and failing to yield to an emergency vehicle. Gillespie said he couldn't see Darling facing the latter charge because Manor's lights and siren were off.

Failing to yield to an emergency vehicle? Well, perhaps – if the fucking moron hadn't been driving his car like a damned rocket at almost 110 mph, WITH his lights and sirens deactivated! How the hell could anyone see that reckless fool coming, much less get out of the way in time?

And then, of course, saying that Darling was "driving under the influence" (DUI). That's a complete and utter lie, as a subsequent blood test taken a little over an hour after the crash showed Darling had less than half the legal blood alcohol level limits, at 0.035 (the limit in the area being 0.08). There's no way he would've been anywhere near that limit of 0.08 only one hour previously. Blood alcohol doesn't rise or lower that fast unless you pump it in or out through a needle or something.

And yet, the asshat sheriff is adamant in assuring that Calvin was indeed driving drunk and had neglected to concede the way to the speeding officer Manor. Figures.

And a final coup-de-grâce: officer Manor wasn't even wearing any seatbelt. Yes, that's some fine police example-setting right there.

I'm starting to wonder if this poor fool should be nominated for a Darwin Award.

(via Dispatches from the Culture Wars)


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