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Opinion: It isn’t just about ‘swatting’ — it’s also about the police officer who shot an innocent man

L.A. County Sheriff's Department SWAT team members in Lancaster on Oct. 5, 2016.
L.A. County Sheriff’s Department SWAT team members in Lancaster on Oct. 5, 2016.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: A Wichita officer shot and killed Andrew Finch, unarmed and unaware he was the target of a massive police response to a prank caller’s bogus report. This sounds too similar to L.A.’s numerous police shootings for us to ignore it. (“Swatting is unconscionable. That doesn’t mean we need a federal law against it,” editorial, Jan. 4)

Wichita’s Police Department has apparently already exonerated the officer who shot Finch, so we can say it works like this: If a cop tells you to put your hands up and you don’t immediately raise them or appear to lower one to your waistband, it’s OK for him to kill you.

If the officer ends up being prosecuted, there’s always the defense that seems to work every time: “I felt threatened.”

Joel Athey, West Hollywood

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