Yup…You read that right.
Stephan Mader, a Marine veteran who served in Afghanistan is suing his small city of West Virginia for firing him after attempting to de-escalate a situation instead of shooting and killing Ronald Williams Jr. during a domestic disturbance call.
He stated that his training in the service told him Williams was not a threat to others or to him, as to why he approached the situation as such.
Armed with a pistol that was NOT loaded, Mader stated that Ronald Williams was depressed but not aggressive, and appeared to be trying to commit “suicide by cop.” He repeatedly said to Mader:
“Just shoot me.”
According to the suit, as Mader was trying to get Williams to drop his gun, two other Weirton Police officers arrived. When Williams raised his gun, one of them "immediately shot Williams in the head, killing him."
Williams' girlfriend reportedly told 911 responders that her boyfriend had a gun but it wasn't loaded, according to the lawsuit stated by CNN. After Williams was killed, investigators also found that it wasn't loaded. It was unclear from the lawsuit whether 911 dispatchers relayed the girlfriend's message to first responders.
With so many “shoot first, ask questions later” cases of white cops kill black individuals, you would think this former officer would be praised for attempting to calm down a situation instead of shooting yet another black man out of ‘FEAR’.
His decision to not pull the trigger only presents a deeper rooted issue in the police department, where shooting a black man gives you paid leave while deciding NOT to kill a man gets you fired.
What is the real message the police department is sending?