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Metro Recommends Severe Punishment For Officer-Involved Shootings


Mike Blasky, Police Reporter, Las Vegas Review-Journal


“The level of scrutiny in police shootings is at an all-time high,” says Las Vegas Review Journal reporter Mike Blasky.

This may explain the punishment served by Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie to officers who used deadly force in the shooting of disabled army veteran Stanley Gibson. Two officers stand to lose the most -- Lt. David Dockendorf, who supervised the plan will be demoted. Lt. Jesus Arevalo, who actually fired the shots, was recommended for dismissal from the force.

Metro’s Use of Force Board met to discuss the incident in May. The committee has intensified scrutiny on officer-involved shootings following a U.S. Department of Justice report that found the board lacked transparency and accountability.

“No one was a fan of the inquest process,” says Blasky. “Critics said it was too favorable to the officers.”

In the case of the Gibson shooting, faulty police radios were also considered an important factor in the communication breakdown that lead to the shooting of Gibson, a veteran who was suffering from post traumatic stress disorder. According to reports, the radios were so unreliable that officers used their own cell phones for communication instead.

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