A rookie officer in Ohio was caught on video refusing to shoot the suspect wanted in two murders -- even as the distraught man repeatedly charges him and demands to be shot.

In a scene captured by his body camera on Thursday, New Richmond police officer Jesse Kidder is shown aiming his weapon at 27-year-old Michael Wilcox, who allegedly killed both his girlfriend and best friend in separate locations.

Several times, Wilcox rushes at Kidder. Each time, Kidder runs backward while keeping his handgun aimed at the suspect, urging him to surrender.

"Shoot me!" Wilcox cries out. "Shoot me."

"No man," Kidder replies. "I'm not gonna do it."

At one point, Kidder appears to fall to the ground but remains in control of the situation, ordering the suspect to back up. Eventually, Wilcox surrenders. (source)

While most opinion pieces praise the officer for his restraint, I've seen interviews with police trainers who said he acted in disregard for proper procedure in such cases, which would normally call for someone engaged in assaulting a police officer to be shot. Not necessarily shot dead, though at such close range and with several shots normally being fired, death would be a common result.

The reason the trainers give is that (a) the suspect is a homicide suspect, so it's reasonable to fear he has homicide on his mind and (b) not shooting him could result in the officer being killed, leaving the suspect free to kill other citizens.

Your thoughts? And please, let's do better than "fairy dust" solutions like shooting him in the leg or tasing him (which fails a lot more often than shooting) 

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He's damn lucky. While I'm not a huge proponent of police shootings that could have gone in a much more disasterous direction. The officer should have shot that man. I'm not saying that this man's life should have been taken but the officer failed to protect himself. I assume he just wanted to spare the man's life (I can't say if he froze up in fear or not but I like to see the humanizing factors in people.); however, this man is reported to have already killed 2 people he was close to. You can only imagine what he would do to a stranger. I'm glad nobody had to die but that was irresponsible by the officer.

I don't know if it was on Off. Kidder's mind, but with all the hubbub over unjustified police shootings, I wonder if we're now going to see officers fail to shoot when they should. If he won't shoot a crazed double-murder suspect rushing him, when would he shoot?

Of course, it turned out okay this time, but arguing that way is kind of like when you tell your teen that they're following too close and their reply is "Well, I didn't hit him, did I?"

Personally, I think those praising him for not shooting are nuts. Were I his police chief, he'd be picking up his severance pay.

I'm glad you started this discussion Unseen. I hadn't had the time to look into the details, but I heard this on the radio that "A police officer is getting praised for NOT shooting...yada yada...".................I started to think to myself, "Enough about the police already! Just let them do their jobs and shut up about it!" LOL...

I can understand the logic of police officers who believe he should have shot the suspect, but personally, I’d rather have courageous officers like him than like cowards like Darren Wilson and the others who shoot first and ask questions later. But I must admit that I do wonder if he would have acted in the manner he did if the suspect had been black.  I’d sure like to think so.

I once had an officer start to draw a gun on me after a VERY minor and unintentional traffic lane infraction.  Fortunately, I raised my hands immediately.  And, fortunately, I am white; otherwise...?

 Regarding the comment here by Emory Hunter who castigated the officer for not shooting: is he aware that the suspect was not actually brandishing a weapon at the time?  It was in his pocket, and the officer felt he had time to shoot the suspect if he looked as if he might try to remove it.

 But let's face it: as Dan Aykroyd recently remarked, Americans are "flat-out gun crazy."  Americans were raised on cowboy movies and see that fictional image of the old west as how a REAL American male should behave.  

I can understand the logic of police officers who believe he should have shot the suspect, but personally, I’d rather have courageous officers like him than like cowards like Darren Wilson and the others who shoot first and ask questions later.

When you look up "false dichotomy" in the dictionary...

But I must admit that I do wonder if he would have acted in the manner he did if the suspect had been black.  I’d sure like to think so.

While there have been a few white cop/black victim shootlings in the news, please bear in mind that in today's world, almost every one of the totally unjustified shootings will make it into the news. Also bear in mind that we probably have 100,000's of police and as rule they are not going around popping bullets into every black man they see.

Regarding the comment here by Emory Hunter who castigated the officer for not shooting: is he aware that the suspect was not actually brandishing a weapon at the time?  It was in his pocket, and the officer felt he had time to shoot the suspect if he looked as if he might try to remove it.

The police instructors interviewed didn't think that the fact he wasn't actually brandishing a weapon irrelevant for several reasons. 1) He could have produced a weapon almost instantaneously if he had had one. You always assume that an assailant has a weapon even if you can't see it. 2) had he reached the cop, what then? Might the cop have had his weapon taken away and used to kill the cop first and then other people? 3) If he's going to gain control of the situation, the time to do it is before it becomes hand-to-hand combat because there are lots of very capable people walking around who don't need a gun to kill you. For example, one of my friends is an ex-Navy SEAL (=SAS to you, as I think you are British).

But let's face it: as Dan Aykroyd recently remarked, Americans are "flat-out gun crazy."  Americans were raised on cowboy movies and see that fictional image of the old west as how a REAL American male should behave.  

Wow, are you out of touch with our entertainment choices in the United States. "Cowboy movies"? Here is what's playing in my area.

I might add that broad brush characterizations like the one you made there are at the heart of racism: whites assuming because of all the blacks involved in crime in the news starting to think that all blacks are (or are potential/possible) criminals. Add on to that the fact that our police deal with an inordinate amount of black criminals and you have a plausible if not defensible explanation for how white cops end up shooting black suspects.

"Americans were raised on cowboy movies and see that fictional image of the old west as how a REAL American male should behave."

Believe it or not, there are tens of thousands of RESPONSIBLE gun owners, such as myself, who easily understand the gravity and responsibility of gun ownership. We don't buy into the machismo you allude to.

Dale, It seems that you have misunderstood my statement completely. As I stated multiple times in my previous post I'm glad it ended peacefully. That does not negate the fact that Officer Kidder put his life and the lives of others at risk by not following police protocol. Had he lost his firearm while retreating or been overtaken, disarmed or killed, his service firearm would be in the hands of a person who has shown that they are mentally unstable and has already killed previously. When that man rushed at the officer, his job is to take control of the situation and subdue him. He's lucky the incident ended without any additional violence.

Only in America would a cop not shooting someone who was not brandishing a gun be news.

That's a very incomplete description of the situation, but at least it serves the point you want to make.

+1

Suicide by COP. It takes an extremely outstanding kind of police officer to figure it out and do everything he can to not let this man die and fmiss facing the consequences of his murders in the justice system.

Any COP who said: "I would have pulled the trigger the moment he even looked like he was about to charge" is the kind of person who should be put in army fatigues...not police outfits.

But did he "figure it out" or just do something stupid? Please lay out how the world is now a better place with a guy who wanted to commit two murders followed by a suicide-by-cop still in it.

Personally, I believe people have the right to commit suicide. If it's suicide by cop, well that's certainly one way to do it.

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