Civil Rights Law & Policy Blog

Editor: Andrew M. Ironside

A Member of the Law Professor Blogs Network

Friday, August 29, 2014

"Houston Cops Always Justified in Shootings. Always."

The Texas Observer's Emily DePrang writes:

Every shooting by a Houston Police Department officer is investigated by HPD’s Internal Affairs and Homicide divisions. Between 2007 and 2012, according to HPD records, officers killed citizens in 109 shootings. Every killing was ruled justified.

 

The 112 instances of an officer shooting and injuring a person were justified, too.

 

So were the 104 times an officer wounded an animal, and the 225 times an officer killed an animal.

 

There were 16 shootings found “not justified,” but they were all ruled accidental.

 

In more than one in five cases in which officers fired on citizens, the citizen was unarmed.

I suppose it's theoretically possible that every single shooting by a Houston police officer was entirely legit. But I'm skeptical - and a little scared.

DePrang also points out that Houstonians have very little authority to oversee questionable police conduct because the body charged with reviewing Internal Affairs investigations has no enforcement authority. 

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/civil_rights/2014/08/houston-cops-always-justified-in-shootings-always.html

Excessive Force | Permalink

Comments

Houston needs some agency with the authority to revoke a police certification. There is a statewide agency with that authority in all but four or five states. I don't know if Texas is one or not. A citizen should be able to complain to the State Certification Board of a wrongful act and the Board should have the authority to decertify the cop so that he can not be a cop anywhere in that state.

Posted by: Liberty1st | Aug 31, 2014 3:30:15 PM

Post a comment