Watch this video and ask: What do you see?

Watch this seven second video of an actual pursuit by Chicago Police Department Detectives of an alleged criminal. The video you will be watching was taken in real time by a police officer videographer who was also in harm’s way as he trained a camera on the suspect and was standing next to and slightly behind one of the police detectives.


What did you see? Officers pursued a suspect and upon closing on him ordered him to put an assault rifle down on the ground. Did you see this happen? Did you see the assault rifle? The suspect appears to be complying with the officer’s demand, and then suddenly officers shoot the male dropping him instantly. Did you see the same thing?

I would like you to watch the video again so you might have a slight better idea of what it is like being a police officer on the street and having to make a split second decision with life changing consequences. Now watch the video again and pay attention to the suspect’s right hand as he places the rifle down with his left hand.

What you don’t see by facing the suspect face-to-face, but the Police Detective behind the suspect does see, is the suspect pulling a hidden handgun from his rear pants with his right hand. The second officer yells “Gun!” before firing. Watch as the suspect goes down…the handgun is still in his right hand.

What you think you see does not always tell the truth. Police Officers are trained, and continue to practice, making split second decisions to prepare for situations just like you saw. There are no excuses for a “bad cop” or one that abuses his/her authority or fails to protect the citizens he is sworn to help, as well as to bring enforcement of the law. But equally, an officer faces immediate threats others only comment about, and from a great safe distance after the fact.

Next time you see an officer let him or her know you watched the above video, and viewing it has made you have a greater appreciation for how instantly their life can be challenged and changed.