"Prosecutors drop charge against man who had shootout with cop": Self defense against cop

I don't bring this up to be critical of police, as anyone who has read my research knows how important I think that they are. Still this is a pretty amazing self defense case from the Austin-American Statesman:

Travis County prosecutors on Friday dismissed the case against David Lozano, who lost his leg in a late-night shootout with an Austin police officer at Lozano's Northeast Austin house in 2007.
"We believe that Mr. Lozano maintained a reasonable belief that on that day and time he was defending himself, his wife and his property," Travis County Assistant District Attorney Steven Brand said.
The dismissal came after a series of expert witnesses for the state and defense cast doubt on whether officer Roger Boudreau told the truth about the confrontation, according to lawyers in the case.
"Had it not been a police officer, this case would have been dismissed a long time ago," said Lozano's lawyer, Ryan Deck. "A police officer changed everything."
Lozano, 48, spent 13 months in jail before he was released on bail last year. . . . .
Lozano and his wife, Rosemary, were having marital problems leading up to the incident on March 11, 2007, according to Deck and a police affidavit.
That night, a man with whom Rosemary Lozano had had an affair threatened David Lozano in a phone conversation, Deck said. Then that man, Miguel Salazar, called police and reported a domestic disturbance at the Lozano home, Deck said.
Next, according to both Boudreau's account as detailed in the police affidavit and Lozano's account as told by Deck, Boudreau knocked on the door, heard someone chamber a round into a gun through the door and moved off the porch.
Lozano thought it was Salazar knocking and intentionally made the sound with the gun to scare him, Deck said. After Lozano looked through the peephole and saw nobody, he opened the door, Deck said.
Boudreau never identified himself as a police officer during the incident, according to Deck and the affidavit.
What happened after the door opened was in dispute.
Lozano said that Boudreau fired two shots in front of the house; Boudreau said Lozano fired first, according to the police affidavit. . . . .
Deck said that further analysis by his expert witness found that Boudreau fired the first five shots. In recent weeks, he said, Brand told him that state experts had independently determined that Boudreau fired at least the first three shots, prompting prosecutors to abandon the case.
Deck said he doesn't think it was an innocent mistake by Boudreau, but that Boudreau intentionally lied about who fired the first shots. . . . .

Thanks very much to Rich for this link.



Blogger Ken Mott said...

Best part of the story is that the cop racked his gun when he was outside the house. This cop is an idiot. Not running hot.

3/29/2009 12:09 PM  
Blogger Martin G. Schalz said...

This type of behavior occurs far more frequently than most folks would think.

It's called 'testilying'.

This is not to disparage good LE personnel, but to point out that it happens very frequently, and by the same group of bad apples every time they need to protect themselves, and or justify their own lawlessness in the pursuit of the 'bad guys'.

Sometimes folks enter the LE profession with the thought that they will be a savior, and in the end, just end up bitter.

This in and of itself is no suprise as being 'society's garbageman' takes it toll on folks.

This toll sometimes leads to hiding behind the badge as an easier alternative to toughing it out, and doing the job correctly.

Many do so quite well, but there are others who fail, and they are protected by the collective. US vs THEM mentality. Yeah, Joe screwed up, but he got the bad guy.

LE folks are downright ostracized by the mainstream of society, and it takes it a lot to keep one's focus on what is right, and what is wrong.

When there is lack of oversight, good people get locked up, and the bad cop walks.

Human nature.

3/29/2009 2:46 PM  
Blogger Martin G. Schalz said...

Did I miss a part of the story Mr. Mott? I did read that the homeowner cycled his weapon, but I did not see any mention of the officer doing so.

As far as indicating one's intentions in a clear and obvious way, I too have resorted to cycling a weapon so that others had a chance to leave, and go away without any further escalation of possible violence.

In this situation, the officer should have identified himself as a law enforcement officer, retreated, taken cover and concealment, assess the dangers, and then call for backup. He failed to do so, so he covered his own butt by testilying, and portraying himself as a hero.

3/29/2009 10:10 PM  

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