To The Daily Sun,
Belknap County Attorney Melissa Guldbrandsen must immediately be removed from office for endangering the lives of every New Hampshire citizen.
This is true because Guldbrandsen just determined that Alton police officer Michael Beauchamp was justified in the use of "deadly force" when he fired his weapon at a moving vehicle which did not yield to him while he was standing in the middle of the road, dressed in blue/black, at night, while holding a flashlight.
The very idea that a police officer is justified in the use deadly force against an individual operating a motor vehicle because the driver failed to yield to them while they are standing in the middle of a road at night and holding a flashlight is repulsive. Drunk driver or not, this type of action is not justified!
Even if police killing of drunk drivers were legal, there was no way for officer Beauchamp to have known, prior to firing his weapon, if the operator of the vehicle had experienced a medical emergency or if children were in the car. These facts alone justified the county attorney in determining the use of force was not justified.
Had the individual operating the vehicle been a 16-year-old female texting or talking on her cell phone, or someone who had just experienced a diabetic medical emergency, I can guarantee Guldbrandsen would have reached a different conclusion.
I simply cannot understand why, with two emergency vehicles at the scene, both with emergency lights flashing, why would officer Beauchamp find it necessary to place his life in danger by entering into the middle of a road, at night, wearing dark clothes with a flashlight? Is this type of action standard police practice? If so, this practice is absurd.
Going forward, until this terrible and unjustified determination by Belknap County Attorney, Melissa Guldbrandsen is corrected, and officer Beauchamp's actions condemned, every New Hampshire citizen who fails to notice, for whatever reason, a police officer standing in the middle of a road at night holding a flashlight is at risk of being shot and killed by the police — and the killing will be justified.
- Category: Letters
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