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Letter: News-Sentinel should educate as it reports the news

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Posted: Thursday, April 3, 2014 12:00 am

With increasing frequency, the Lodi News-Sentinel, and for a lesser part other local news outlets, have kept the Shergill shooting in the media forefront. It has been a rehash of mostly previously reported information. The fact that the victim here was ex-military, as continually reported, appears to have no bearing on if deadly force was authorized in this matter.

I have some suggestions: I would like to see the News-Sentinel do some investigative reporting on when and how law enforcement can use deadly force — penal code and departmental policy. I think that news organizations have a responsibility to not only report the news, but to educate the general public as well. Too often the public can only relate to police using deadly force by the TV or movies that they view. This, I think, can go a long way in informing people of when law enforcement can use deadly force. It might also address why the police don’t, as a matter of procedure, shoot the weapon out of the suspect’s hand or shoot them in the shoulder.

Again, I think we owe it to the officers involved in this event, and to the family of Mr. Shergill, to wait for the completed post-shooting investigation.

One other observation: If the police had been to Mr. Shergill’s residence multiple times previously, why was he not being effectively treated for his alleged mental health issues?

Ken Winchell

Lockeford

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