Another young man has been shot by two Pasco police officers. All he had was a knife and was uncooperative. Rather than talk him down, police fired multiple times and killed him. News reports make it sound as if the policemen involved did not know how to deal with this situation and reacted with a "shoot first and ask questions later" mentality. Because our society does not offer mental health care, we unfortunately leave it to police to deal with these issues.
I hope the Pasco Police Department takes this opportunity to provide training for their officers in how to deal with these situations. Also, having the two officers investigated by other law enforcement employees is not confidence-inspiring; it is like having the fox guard the hen house. An outside agency should be brought in to examine the actions of the men who killed Brad.
I support the calls for independent oversight and better training so that police officers can recognize disabilities and know how to respond appropriately. Too often, police respond to odd behavior as dangerous and deploy lethal force that is unnecessary. Our city policemen need to be reminded they are not military warriors; they are peace officers.
LAUNA MORASCH, Richland