Two Brooklyn Police Officers Shot and Killed

Two Brooklyn police officers who were sitting in their patrol car were shot and killed by a lone gunman from Baltimore. The gunman shot himself in a nearby subway station. The Daily News has a graphic photo of him alive on a stretcher as he was removed from the subway station. He has reportedly since died.

The shooter, identified as Ismaaiyl Brinsley, boasted about wanting to kill cops in the hours before he ambushed the officers outside the Tompkins Houses in Bedford-Stuyvesant about 3 p.m. Saturday.

“I’m Putting Wings On Pigs Today. They Take 1 Of Ours...Let’s Take 2 of Theirs,” Brinsley wrote on Instagram alongside a photo of a silver handgun.

Hours earlier, Brinsley allegedly shot and killed his girlfriend in Baltimore. Brooklyn police confirm both officers are dead.

Whatever the grievance with police, it is unacceptable and wrong to physically attack them. Vigilante justice is no justice at all.

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    "Allegedly" killing his girlfriend (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by CoralGables on Sat Dec 20, 2014 at 06:47:45 PM EST
    prior to killing two police officers takes that retribution theory and tosses it right out the window, and turns it into "I'm toast, I'm taking others with me".

    I'm having Christmas dinner (none / 0) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Dec 20, 2014 at 06:07:15 PM EST
    With three deputies tomorrow because they have to work on Christmas.  This kind of thing is something they worry about.  These guys may be a bit racist around the edges but the do good work and the have families who depend on them.  I worry some times that the actions of a few may cause others to be harmed.  I couldn't agree with you more.   That quote is a pretty scary thing for people with cops at the dinner table even if they are yahoos.   I worry about this not being the last of this we will see.

    I hold no brief for the guy who did this, (none / 0) (#3)
    by scribe on Sat Dec 20, 2014 at 07:07:28 PM EST
    but the only things which surprise me are that this hasn't happened before, and that it doesn't happen more often.

    One of a close relative's favorite sayings was "if you kick a dog often enough, pretty soon it'll turn around and bite you."  I can't tell you how many times I've heard (or seen in print or on the TV) cops (or their supporters) going on about how the people complaining about being abused by police "are animals", that "they live like animals", comparing them to animals or subhumans, or otherwise treating the people they're supposed to be serving as less than deserving of full humanhood.  Chief Gates taking Nancy Reagan on a raid, then pointing out the young black men as "the worst of the worst", the source of all society's problems.  A beaming Christie Todd Whitman frisking some young black arrestee.  Republicans reveling in cops killing one or another young black men and engaging in rhetorical-logical gymnastics to justify anything the police do, video and witnesses notwithstanding.

    And then, when the police off one or more young black men we get the routinized invocation (in stentorian tones reminiscent of Jim Baker talking about The Rule Of Law Winning the night in 2000 that the Supreme Court installed Bushie in the Oval Office) of the majesty of law and justice and the regrettable trauma that removing criminals from society inflicts on the officers of the law.  So they can threaten us no more.  For your safety.  And, if as in Ferguson that means prosecutors deliberately putting people they knew would lie (but the lie supported the police) before the grand jury, so be it.  (That Ferguson prosecutor deserves an Oscar - Best Imitation of a Cop's defense attorney).

    Being a cop is a dangerous, thankless job. Cops   treating people, particularly in minority communities, as something less than deserving of respect winds up making it more dangerous and thankless, not less.  I don't like the idea of people taking revenge on cops, shooting cops, or fighting cops.  There are better things to do.  And these two, it would appear, just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time wearing the wrong clothes.

    Like Amadou Diallo, for one.

    I'm definitely not happy about this, but I am also not surprised.

    Not a vigilante (none / 0) (#4)
    by toggle on Sat Dec 20, 2014 at 07:40:18 PM EST
    A vigilante seeks to punish individuals for something they have personally done.

    This is more like a hate crime or an act of terrorism, violence directed at victims selected they are members of a class of people the perpetrator disliked.

    Act of terrorism? Hate Crime? (none / 0) (#5)
    by nycstray on Sat Dec 20, 2014 at 08:13:59 PM EST
    How about murder by an angry man . . .

    Cops as targets (none / 0) (#6)
    by Terry Ott on Sat Dec 20, 2014 at 08:22:32 PM EST
    It's NOT surprising, scribe, as you say.  But there's another dimension to that, I think.  Context: I live in the downtown area of a major Northern city.  The African American population here is around 25-30% (in the city) and 15% Hispanic.  

    Just by reading the paper and watching the nightly news, one gets a definite sense that most of the violent crime is in sections of the city where the "majority" population is sparse, and where drugs are dealt most often in public places.  And most of that violence is between African Americans or as some say "black on black" and domestic violence.  By a sizable margin, though I have not researched it.

    Now, if I put myself in the place of a police officer, those are the scenarios I'm most often going to be asked to interject myself into. day after day after night after night.  It would be very hard for anyone in their shoes NOT to reach some conclusions about where their greatest risks are, and to be "edgy" as a result.  

    It must take great discipline and restraint to be "professional" ALL the time, which is what we demand.  I'd LIKE to think I could be, but I'll never be sure.  Some cops are going to cross the line every now and then.  That's a "fail" on their part, but the standard for them is very very high.   So, I am not surprised when it happens.  

    Tragic. The alleged (none / 0) (#7)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 20, 2014 at 08:51:36 PM EST
    perpetrator stated on social media he was going to kill police officers.