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Blood and cops in the news

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There's a cynical news saying: If it bleeds, it leads. Well, there was lots of blood in the news yesterday and the stories aren't going anywhere. In case you need to catch up:

Up in Goleta yesterday, 44-year old Jennifer Sanmarco walked into a postal processing plant where she'd once worked. She shot and killed 5, seriously injured one and then committed suicide. This morning there are reports that an ex-neigbor of Sanmarco's has also been found dead.

As if a crazed ex-postal worker wasn't bad enough, yesterday a video surfaced of a San Bernardino sheriff's shooting Sunday night. The video shows the deputy, with his weapon drawn, order a suspect to get up off the ground; as the man begins to stand, the officer shoots him 3 times at close range (some news reports have said 5 feet). The suspect, 21-year old Elio Carrion, was a passenger in a car that had been pulled over after a short high-speed chase; he was also an Air Force security officer just back from Iraq. Amazingly, he survived shots to the chest, arm and leg and is in the hospital. The video is shocking, and we're horrified that some officals have been telling the press that it may not tell the whole story. It tells enough of the story. It's time we stop making excuses for officers that shoot citizens.

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Which brings us back to the police shooting of Devin Brown, the 13-year old who was killed by an LAPD officer February 6, 2005 as he was driving a stolen car. Yesterday LAPD Chief William Bratton concluded that the officer acted appropriately. Hours later, the civilian LA Police Commission disagreed, in a 4-1 vote; some reactions here. This means that the LAPD will discipline the officer. The civilian oversight commission has found that the shooting was not appropriate.

There will be more to these stories. There's just too much blood.