21 thoughts on “An officer was fired after he chose not to shoot a distraught suspect. Now he’s getting a $175,000 settlement.

  1. SsurebreC February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    > [Police offer] Mader told CNN last year that [domestic disturbance suspect] Williams was “visibly choked up” and told Mader to shoot him. As a Marine veteran who served in Afghanistan, Mader told CNN that he concluded Williams wasn’t a threat and so he tried to de-escalate the situation.

    Jesus, how often do you read a police officer do this? Williams had a gun!

    > As Mader was trying to get Williams to drop his gun, two other Weirton police officers arrived. Mader told CNN that Williams raised his gun and was immediately shot and killed by one of the other officers.

    Williams tried to do suicide by cop, Mader tried to de-escalate, the other officers arrived, Williams took his chance, raised his gun at officers who aren’t aware of the situation, and they fired.

  2. PixPls February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    Weird twist that a police officer decides NOT to shoot, and gets in trouble. Seems like city leaders want you to shoot and then take the heat, when you do.

  3. EvenBetterCool February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    It sickens me how the department tries to change the story about why he was fired when the letter of termination makes it very clear. Thin blue line, until it is an officer making the accusations.

    I really hope he is able to get another job in law enforcement. He is a true asset.

  4. FattyCorpuscle February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    Cop shoots suspect – Taxpayers pay

    Cop doesn’t shoot suspect – Taxpayers pay

  5. victheone February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    This guy is a shining example of a good cop. He analyzed the situation, concluded the guy wasn’t a threat, and tried to de-escalate. He took a risk in order to try and save someone else. This is the definition of heroism.

  6. mattnewby04 February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    As a police detective for a large agency in a metro area in the USA, I wholeheartedly agree with his decision and this quote from the article:

    Joseph Cohen, ACLU-WV executive director, said Mader’s termination was “yet another incident exposing the toxic culture that infects far too many police departments in America.”
    “We need to give law enforcement officers tools to effectively serve their communities. That means we need to invest in de-escalation training, implicit bias training and crisis intervention training. Hopefully the resolution of this lawsuit will send a message to the City of Weirton and police departments across the country that our communities deserve thoughtful, compassionate, transparent law enforcement.”

    I instruct the different training modules the ACLU-WV director mentioned (de-escalation, CIT and Implicit Bias recognition). I’ve had the opportunity to instruct in different states and a host of different styles of police agencies. This is what I generally see:

    1. Younger, newer, more diverse, and university-educated officers are more inclined to actively support the tactics that involve these subjects.

    2. More tenured officers are more likely to be argumentative or insist they already handle things well. (I’ve had several tell me they have no implicit biases…none!)

    3. By far the worst experiences I’ve had teaching these subjects have been to agencies that are smaller or have little oversight outside of their agency

    The tag line I use is that “Implicitly biased policing is unsafe, ineffective and unjust.” So many officers harp on the “officer safety” aspect of policing and how they’ll go home at the end of their shift no matter what. I use this as a hook because it’s been proven in several case studies that informed policing of recognizing biases and acting outside of them is safer for the public AND officers.

    I hope to see this case get more traction.

  7. TinfoilTricorne February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    Firing cops for making judgment calls like that is *way* more anti-police than holding cops accountable for unnecessary force. That officer made a *correct* judgment call that someone was attempting suicide by cop and wasn’t going to cause actual harm in doing so. It wasn’t out of cowardice or neglect. Cops shouldn’t have to worry about getting fired for *not* pulling the trigger when they believe it to be completely unjustified. Those are the kinds of life or death judgment calls we expect them to make when we give them a badge.

  8. bb54321 February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    It’s one of those “good apples” we keep hearing about.

  9. Codoro February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    Kill an innocent person because you “feared for your life” = paid leave.

    Don’t kill a distraught suspect = fired.

    And people wonder why some of us don’t trust cops.

  10. TheLadyEve February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    >Mader told CNN that he concluded Williams wasn’t a threat and so he tried to de-escalate the situation.

    Which is exactly what more police departments need to be training their officers to do. This guy was a marine and he had the experience and skill to handle the crisis–then the other cops showed up and botched it, killing a man needlessly.

  11. tkhan456 February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    This guy deserves a medal

  12. fatduebz February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    A cop does the right thing and doesn’t murder a suspect, and is punished. Yay Murka.

  13. Mjhudson65 February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    I went to high school with this guy. Makes me happy to know at least some good things are happening in my hometown.

  14. AFlaccoSeagulls February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    >The most recent of the events was the May 6 shooting incident, but city officials say Mader was actually escalating the situation by using profanity at Williams prior to any weapons being drawn. City officials also said the former officer “froze at the scene, not communicating with the other officers involved.”

    >That information, Alexander noted, came directly from Mader’s testimony during the investigation of the May incident.

    >“He raised his voice and used profanities toward Mr. Williams,” Alexander said. “His own statements contradict his story.”

    Soooooooo raising your voice and using profanities = “escalating the situation” and is a fire-able offense, but *actually fucking killing someone, regardless of the situation* is cool. Got it.

    Reading through this statement, you can see how quickly this police department threw this guy under the bus, and how quickly city officials were determined to make this appear as a justified firing.

  15. aro327 February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    If anybody doesn’t actually read the story don’t worry two other cops showed up and shot the suspect.

  16. itsmycreed February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    So they fire the good ones?

    I can’t imagine how scared minorities must be of police officers.

  17. Stag_Lee February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    Good cop. Can we get him a dozen donuts?

  18. DJHJR86 February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    I remember this story when it first dropped, and was surprised that the police department and the city officials responded immediately with a press conference. As always, there are 2 sides to the story.

    > On Tuesday, Weirton City Manager Travis Blosser and Police Chief Rob Alexander disputed the information in what they called “a factually inaccurate news story.”

    > “At the City of Weirton, we’re prepared to deal in facts, not stories,” Blosser said, adding Mader had been terminated for conduct unbecoming an officer following a series of events. **“His termination revolved around three major incidents.”**

    > The most recent of the events was the May 6 shooting incident, but **city officials say Mader was actually escalating the situation by using profanity at Williams prior to any weapons being drawn.** City officials also said the former officer “froze at the scene, not communicating with the other officers involved.”

    > **That information, Alexander noted, came directly from Mader’s testimony during the investigation of the May incident.**

    > **“He raised his voice and used profanities toward Mr. Williams,” Alexander said. “His own statements contradict his story.”**

    > City officials **also report Mader’s actions during another incident led to the contamination of a potential crime scene, when, they say, Mader ruled a death incident to be from natural causes when evidence at the scene showed it to be a homicide investigation.** The medical examiner’s office, city officials said, later ruled the cause of death to be blunt force trauma to the head, neck and torso region.

    > In addition, city officials reported an incident in which they say **Mader searched a vehicle without probable cause or a search warrant, leading to a man being arrested for disorderly conduct. Those charges would later be dropped as further investigation showed the officer was cursing at the subject’s wife and conducting an illegal search, city officials said.**

    Yeah, he’s one of the “good” cops. [Source](http://www.weirtondailytimes.com/news/local-news/2016/09/weirton-police-respond-to-story-about-officers-firing-after-shooting/)

  19. Lostscout84 February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    I’m an army war veteran. A cav scout who served a couple tours. IMO, there’s too many police (and military people) scared of their job. They pull the trigger on the slightest threat and fell justified because apparently their job shouldn’t deal with scary moments, if it’s scary they should shoot first and blame the victom because they aren’t supposed to be scared being a police office/soldier. It’s bullshit. Too much of the police force mindset is thinking their lives are that much more important than the people they are sworn to protect. I’m sorry but it’s not. You were given a gun, not a license to kill because the moment got scary for you. Shit, how many civilians would be put in jail because they shot someone when they were scared. It is because you’re a cop it’s ok? Because you are trained and given legal protection? In reality you are shooting somebody because you know you will get away with it. That that little badge on your chest says you are a saint no matter what sheepclothes you are wearing.

  20. AceDeuceThrice February 13, 2018 / 7:18 pm

    He guessed that the shotgun wasn’t loaded and wouldn’t be shot. Even with his experience it’s still a guess, maybe an educated guess at best.

    Would be a totally different story if he guessed wrong and one if his partners got shot while walking up to cover him.

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