BEDFORD FORREST COUNTY, NORTH CAROLINA — The sheriff’s department in a small North Carolina county are currently investigating the chain events that led to one of their officers shooting a deaf and mute man who also had no legs or arms. Though details are still scarce at the time of this publication, the Bedford Forrest Sheriff’s Department is confirming the incident started as a “routine traffic stop.”
Though this is the second such recent high-profile shooting in which a disabled person was shot by law enforcement in the state, the BFSD spokesman says they are relieved that “this one lived, at least.”
“What we know for a fact is that unlike that poor deaf guy up the highway a bit,” BFSD Spokesman Chad Bigglesby said, “our suspect is alive. That’s at least something. This one lived, at least.” Bigglesby said that though he didn’t have all the facts before him yet, he knew that the man shot was not the driver of the vehicle because “people with no arms and no legs typically don’t drive cars.”
Mr. Bigglesby said that the sheriff deputy’s initial accounting of the facts leading to the shooting led them to believe that the deputy “felt scared for his life,” and that despite being armless, legless, deaf, and mute, the victim was “flouncing around” in a way that the deputy “couldn’t risk not acting upon.” When the deputy who fired the shots approached a van he had stopped after noticing a tail light was out, he saw that a man was sitting in the back of the van in a special chair, but he was moving around “in a very threatening away.”
“He was flouncing. That is to say he was flouncing around in a very threatening way, our deputy said.” Bigglesby said.
Bigglesby also confirmed that the suspect was not in possession of any weapons at the time of the shooting.
“When we first heard of the shooting, and someone described him as armless,” Bigglesby said, “I initially thought he meant the suspect was not armed with a weapon. Then I found out he literally had no arms. As it turned out, both were true.” That’s when Bigglesby said the deputy ordered the armless, legless man to stop moving around and to remain calm. When the man didn’t respond to the deputy’s orders — not being able to hear them as he was deaf — the deputy had “no other possible or even remotely imaginable option than to shoot” the man.
The rest of the details of the shooting incident are being kept under tight wraps, as Bigglesby says the investigation is ongoing. He cautioned, though, against a rush to judgment on the deputy involved. It might not look good, he said, but there’s almost always a “reason or excuse for shitty policing.”
“Would we like our deputies to be able to see that a multiple-amputee deaf, mute poses literally no threat to their lives,” Bigglesby asked rhetorically, “of course. I mean, we’d like them to stop shooting unarmed suspects period. We’d like them to stop treating every suspect as if they’re a mortal threat to their health and well-being. But on the other hand, people don’t want to pay a nickel more in taxes, and that means we can’t really afford to get these guys good, reliable mental healthcare and screening to give us a better chance that all happening. Plus, it’s fun to train our law enforcement officers to shoot first and ask questions never. That’s what due process is all about, isn’t it?”
The shooting victim and his family could not be reached for comment.
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