Questions of Lethal Force - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

10/26/04

Questions of Lethal Force

Monday night's fatal shooting by a Lubbock police officer has questions swirling over the use of deadly force. Why weren't less-than-lethal methods used to subdue Pablo Ponciano?

One of the first questions that comes to mind, did the officer have a tazer gun? According to Lieutenant Victor Quintana, most patrol officers are believed to have them, although whether or not officer King actually had one, has yet to be confirmed. Even if he did, there's the issue of officer discretion and a set of criteria, a mental checklist, that the officers run through: intent, capability, opportunity.

According to police, Ponciano advanced towards King with three knives, and refused to disarm. The entire incident taking place inside a tightly confined trailer, with both men within just a few feet of each other.

Finally, more tazers. This Thursday the city council is set to transfer $250,000 from the general fund to an account for law enforcement equipment, which means, buying more tazers for Lubbock police.

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