We have said that dash and body cams, as much as they creep officers out, save a lot more cops’ skins than they put at risk. (On the other hand, the military approach, where the eye on your forehead is being watched in the FOB, in Tampa, or in DC and desk jockeys from all those zip codes are murmuring advice in your ear, is not so good). But having a recording of what cops do from their own point of view is a life- or at least career-saver, and a primo slayer of conspiracy theories.
That’s because most cops do follow their training in interaction with the public. While there may be times they err, being, loath as the public is to give them the credit sometimes, human, most of the time the video shows that the cop was in the right. And the story the suspect or his survivors cooked up of poor li’l Dindu Nuffin bein’ set upon by Da Man is, how shall we put this? Horse puckey.
So the best thing to do, when you have a clean shoot, is to release the video early and often. Let the it-bleeds-it-leads ghouls on local TV have their blood meal. Let the relatives’ story of a “police assassination” be compared to video of a snarling nut-job charging cops with a knife.
Or you can botch it completely like the New Hampshire Attorney General and the state Supreme Court did in the case of the suicide-by-cop of a mentally ill man, Hagen Esty-Lennon, who charged two Haverhill, NH cops, Greg Collins and Ryan Jarvis.
What they ultimately did, egged on by Dindu Nuffin’s wife who wants to pretend that her whackadoodle husband didn’t functionally kill himself, was release the videos with the actual shooting redacted. So all it shows is Hagen Esty-Lennon’s agitated, crazy behavior. Then during the shooting you have the audio of Esty-Lennon being ventilated by multiple shots from the cops’ Smith & Wessons.
And then lots of audio of the chaotic aftermath that’s commonplace after a shooting.
One of the videos is above. Three more are at the New Hampster Union Leader, which was forced to sue for the videos — while the Dindu Nuffin clan spread nonsense about how their guy was heartlessly gunned down. For no reason. And thanks mostly to the AG, the agitators have been handed a video that they can continue to claim shows a bad shoot.
Of course, the AG is one of those individuals who has much more sympathy for criminals and their families than for the cops who spend their days trying to keep a lid on these people.
It gets worse. The very redaction they demanded, they’re now using as “evidence” of a “cover-up.”
Facts we can tell from the video:
- The guy was acting irrationally
- The guy had a knife.
- The guy had previously injured himself with the knife (that’s what the red stain is).
- The guy threatened the cops with the knife.
Everything else is speculation. But there’s nothing here that makes Esty-Lennon look like anything but one of those wretches who’s out on the street only because there are just not enough rooms with neoprene wallpaper, nor any working mechanism to send the nut jobs there.