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Discussion Starter #1
This just really burns me. Why this POS is still breathing our air is beyond me.

DETROIT (AP) -- A motorist pulled over in the middle of the night for a seemingly routine traffic stop was charged Tuesday with murder in the shooting deaths of two police officers who stopped him.

A judge entered an innocent plea on behalf of Eric Marshall, who fell to his knees as the charges were read and had to be pulled up by officers holding him. He does not yet have an attorney.

Marshall, 23, faces a mandatory penalty of life in prison without parole if convicted. He's accused in the deaths of Officers Jennifer Fettig and Matthew Bowens, who were shot early Monday, becoming the 18th and 19th Detroit officers killed in the line of duty since 1990.

The traffic stop had not been called in to police dispatchers. "We don't know what they stopped him for. It's hard to say," said Cmdr. Craig Schwartz of the Major Crimes Division.

After making the stop, Bowens and Fettig returned to their cruiser with Marshall's license. The suspect got out of the pickup truck, approached the officers' car and shot Fettig twice, at least once in the head, Schwartz said.

The suspect ran away while Bowens got out of the cruiser and radioed for backup. The suspect returned and shot Bowens nine times before taking the officer's weapon and driving away, Schwartz said.

At least 22 empty shell casings were found at the scene. Neither officer was able to return fire, Schwartz said.

Police used the suspect's driver's license, found in the police cruiser, to arrest Marshall later Monday at his home.

Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick said Bowens' family noted he wanted to be an officer for as long as they could remember. The 21-year-old Bowens, who was married, joined the department in December 2000.

"This is the only thing he wanted to do with his life," Kilpatrick said.

Fettig, 26, joined in October 2001 and was engaged to another Detroit officer.

The city's police force was deep in mourning. The last time two officers died on the same day was an August 1995 traffic accident.

"It's going to take us a little while to recover from this," Police Chief Ella Bully-Cummings said.

The police department announced last week the creation of a task force to combat a recent spike in violence. Detroit had 35 homicides and 90 shootings in January. Over a six-day period, 17 people were fatally shot and one was beaten to death.

"We have got to get these illegal guns of the street," Bully-Cummings said. "Not only are we losing young people, our citizens, we're losing our officers."

Training. Training and more Training. I can only guess that both officers attention was fixed on the RMV check and didn't notice this piece of garbage coming towards them.
It just makes me sick
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Unbelievable. Suspect should have a needle hooked into arm, but I won't spark that debate. I find it interesting though that the stop was not called into dispatch. My condolences to the families/friends of the Officers.
 
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I find nothing unusual about the stop not being called in. I almost never called in a motor vehicle stop in my time on the road and I always rode solo. In fact, most officers/troopers I know do not call their stops in.

I don't have all the facts in this case. I just know what I am reading on the internet and in the papers. But, it seems there was nothing in particular that caught the officers' attention during their initial interaction with Mr. Bad Guy. It seems he suckered them into a false sense of security by giving them his license w/o a fuss and allowing them to return to their cruiser. He then pounced on two unsuspecting officers seated in their cruiser. What good would it have done to call this one in? A third cop shot to death?

And just because you "call it in" to dispatch, doesn't mean you want every cop w/i the sound of your voice to come charging to your rescue. I don't like it when the papers comment "the officer didn't call it in." It seems like their blaming the dead officer for not telling dispatch about a car stop. Like that had anything to do with his death.

just my opinion....

Guinness2429
 

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Posted: 18 Feb 2004 21:27 Post subject:

:x This angers me to hear that law enforcement officers believe that it is OK not to call in traffic stops to dispatch. This is a perfect example why one should ALWAYS call in traffic stops. It is called back-up. What if there was another cruiser in the area that could have assisted. Stated that there was no return fire from officers. Well, more officers would have meant more chance to return fire and save a brother or sister officers life. It pisses me off to hear that people think it is ok not to call off traffic stops. It is ridiculous. We talking about saving lives here. Yes, the kid in Detriot who be put to death.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
What jacked me up the most about this incident was the age of the officers. I'm 35 I've got a few years of experience on the job and in other areas of LE. I can't stress how important training and attention to detail is. This was a avoidable tragedy. In my department calling in a traffic stop does not bring in the cav. It gets noted, logged and thats it. If you need back up it will come like the hammer of God.
I posted this article to remind all of us that "IT" can happen that fast.
Always remember rule #1 Go home alive
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We always call out stops in and if they need to know exactly where I am in case of an emergency, we have GPS in all our cruisers displayed at the station. I like it when another officer calls the stop in, because i enter the plate they are running on my laptop too and I can see if it's a little old lady or a guy with 20 items on his BOP.
 
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The fact of the matter is you need to rely on one thing only to get you through your shift and that is your own ability. Calling in your stop is useless if you miss something obvious on your first approach that might lead you to request backup or take a different approach to the stop. There are several studies which claim that one officer cruisers are safer than two officer ones. I guess the idea is that the single officer pays more attention to details since there is no one else to rely upon.

In any event, we will never know what really happened here since those who could tell are dead and the sh*tbum certainly won't talk. Can anyone say death penalty?

Guinness2429
 
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To H50 you also run the plate of the vehicle being stopped. So now you, dispatch , and the M/V stop cruiser are all querrying the same plate. No wonder Leaps is slow. criminals usually dont drive there own cars.
 

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I work MIDS, i don't have a problem with too many plates being run. I don't think it will bog the system down that much.
 

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It was logistically impossible for us to call in every stop: we had six barracks using one HF channel...and our (urban) barracks used to get accused of "hogging the troop net" as it was...

And as far as that scumbag in Detroit...where is Uday and Qusay's plastic shredder when you need it?! :idea:
 

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O.K. now

Lets not start a war. there are some agencies in Mass and the rest of the country that do not routinely call out every stop. In some cases it is a matter of logistics. A lone officer covering an entire jurisdiction, and it is not so rare. In addition, it may not be a current practice/policy with some agencies.

That being said my department calls in all traffic stops to dispatch by policy. I think it is a good idea. I think everybody should do it. But I don't think I would start flaming out at those who don't and arne not required to.
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Bluelite75 said:
After making the stop, Bowens and Fettig returned to their cruiser with Marshall's license. The suspect got out of the pickup truck, approached the officers' car and shot Fettig twice, at least once in the head, Schwartz said.
It's not mentioned in this article, but I thought I read in the first story about this that the officers initiated the stop by pulling in front of the suspect's car. They remained there after he came to a stop, rather than pulling behind his vehicle. Regardless of whether or not they called in the stop, they left themselves open to attack. How many of us have dropped our guard a little after getting the mutt's license, figuring if he handed it over he probably doesn't have a lot to hide?

This is NOT meant as a slam on our murdered brother and sister. They may have had reasons to do what they did. Hopefully, we can learn from this horrible event and use it to prevent this from happening again. :(
 

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mpd61,

I agree...it is a great idea to call in all stops. It just wasn't practical given the state of our radio system...maybe it's different now with the vaunted "800" freq...I don't know.

But I do know that a lot of our braves have limited or no 800 capability(in the Berkshires). :shock:

I have both radios. The HF was built in the mid-sixties, as has been every radio issued to me since I came on the job. GE (as seen on the TV show "EMERGENCY"...where the captain of Squad 51 talks into the back of the mic :shock: ). With the advent of the 800, I finally got an HT(walkie-talkie to those born to WWII and Korea vets). I worked for at least five years without one...the cardinal rule was to put the outside speaker on when you exitted the cruiser! The first time I was "in-the-jackpot" with my HT, I couldn't hit the tower...it was useless...and that was in the "north end" of Springfield...fear not, though...we are keeping the indians from invading the 128 loop... :D The CT guys and us have them surrounded at Uncasville and Ledyard! :D

If you can call in all your stops, do so. If you can't, stay alert!!! And even if you can...STAY ALERT...lerts' have more fun!
 

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This angers me to hear that law enforcement officers believe that it is OK not to call in traffic stops to dispatch. This is a perfect example why one should ALWAYS call in traffic stops. It is called back-up. What if there was another cruiser in the area that could have assisted. Stated that there was no return fire from officers. Well, more officers would have meant more chance to return fire and save a brother or sister officers life. It pisses me off to hear that people think it is ok not to call off traffic stops. It is ridiculous. We talking about saving lives here. Yes, the kid in Detriot who be put to death.
Can we please not monday morning quarterback these dead officer's actions? The fact of the matter is, these officers patrol some of the meanest streets in the country. Much meaner than Roxbury, Mattapan and any other Massachusetts example you want to introduce. They may have made a mistake and they paid for it with their lives. Lets not sit here and second guess their actions, "I would have called it in, I would have had back up...etc etc etc...we could go on all day. The point is, it is always dangerous, some places more than others. It just so happens that the City of Detroit had 92 NON-FATAL shootings just in January 2004!! This does not include the number of homicides! They had 1,032 NON-FATAL shootings in 2003, and 361 Homicides, compared with Boston's 39. Im not trying to start a war here, Im just saying, they patrol these areas everyday. They are not perfect, and lets not criticize them. A slip up could easily happen to anyone, even here.
 
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Unfortunately, it seems the media did not report the incident acurately. I don't want to go into specifics here, but I just read a GBC teletype item dated 2/20/04 from NLETS giving a different version of events. I will not say anything further so as not to risk a 'Monday morning quarterback' situation.

Guinness2429
 
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