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Thread: Woman, 92, dies in shootout with police

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    Woman, 92, dies in shootout with police

    ATLANTA, Georgia (AP) -- The niece of a 92-year-old woman shot to death by police said her aunt likely had reason to shoot three narcotics investigators as they stormed her house.

    Police insisted the officers did everything right before entering the home Tuesday evening, despite suggestions from the woman's neighbors and relatives that it was a case of mistaken identity.

    The woman, Kathryn Johnston, was the only resident in the house at the time and had lived there for about 17 years, Assistant Chief Alan Dreher said.

    The officers had a legal warrant, "knocked and announced" before they forced open the door and were justified in shooting once fired upon, he said.

    Sarah Dozier, the niece, told WAGA-TV that there were never drugs at the house. (Watch niece's fury at police shooting )

    "My aunt was in good health. I'm sure she panicked when they kicked that door down," Dozier said. "There was no reason they had to go in there and shoot her down like a dog."

    more at link: http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/11/22/wom....ap/index.html

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    There is something odd about the story the relaltive put forth.

    I mean you need probable cause to get a warrant.....it is not just rubberstamped..........

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    What a very emotional situation. I think everyone involved in this is innocent. Had that been a home invasion we would be saying "good Job' to this lady. But now she's gone and the officers have this on their conscience, but what else could they do. I must commend her on being a very good shot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Linda7NJ
    ATLANTA, Georgia (AP) -- The niece of a 92-year-old woman shot to death by police said her aunt likely had reason to shoot three narcotics investigators as they stormed her house.

    Police insisted the officers did everything right before entering the home Tuesday evening, despite suggestions from the woman's neighbors and relatives that it was a case of mistaken identity.

    The woman, Kathryn Johnston, was the only resident in the house at the time and had lived there for about 17 years, Assistant Chief Alan Dreher said.

    The officers had a legal warrant, "knocked and announced" before they forced open the door and were justified in shooting once fired upon, he said.

    Sarah Dozier, the niece, told WAGA-TV that there were never drugs at the house. (Watch niece's fury at police shooting http://i.a.cnn.net/cnn/.element/img/...icon_video.gif)

    "My aunt was in good health. I'm sure she panicked when they kicked that door down," Dozier said. "There was no reason they had to go in there and shoot her down like a dog."

    more at link: http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/11/22/wom....ap/index.html
    I read that her family and their pastor and a civil rights leaders were meeting. WTF!! does the family need the civil rights leader for? The police had a bonified warrant signed by the courts for god's sake.

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    I saw this on T.V. this morning, somehthing sounded 'hinky' to me.

    One thing though, I'm a good shot, but don't know if I'll be one at 92, if I live that long

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    Quote Originally Posted by bakerprune64
    I read that her family and their pastor and a civil rights leaders were meeting. WTF!! does the family need the civil rights leader for? The police had a bonified warrant signed by the courts for god's sake.
    They have the NAACP involved now. Pulling the "race card" of course. I am so sick of this in the Atlanta area! Sick of hearing the race issue from both sides. These officers had a warrant because they bought drugs from a man in that house earlier. It will be interesting to see if it is a relative of hers, as the neighbors claim the only people she allowed in her house were her nieces and nephews.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Animal04216
    They have the NAACP involved now. Pulling the "race card" of course. I am so sick of this in the Atlanta area! Sick of hearing the race issue from both sides. These officers had a warrant because they bought drugs from a man in that house earlier. It will be interesting to see if it is a relative of hers, as the neighbors claim the only people she allowed in her house were her nieces and nephews.
    How many 92 year old women pack hardware?? From the article I read I thought it said that the woman opened fire as they "approached" the house; at least that is what I think I read.

    Something's rotten in Denmark.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bakerprune64
    WTF!! does the family need the civil rights leader for?
    Doesn't every family have one of these on call?

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    The Police report that they were shot upon as they approached the house, the "niece" reports they were shot upon "as they knocked" down the door.

    Hummmmm......let me who I believe, the Police.

    What were the cops surposed to do, allow this women to fire upon them and not return fire. I don't think so.

    If you fire upon someone and they are armed, it would be well advised to fire back. Not that I have ever done either.......or have ever been in possession of a gun, nor would I ever have a gun.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberLaw
    The Police report that they were shot upon as they approached the house, the "niece" reports they were shot upon "as they knocked" down the door.

    Hummmmm......let me who I believe, the Police.

    What were the cops surposed to do, allow this women to fire upon them and not return fire. I don't think so.

    If you fire upon someone and they are armed, it would be well advised to fire back. Not that I have ever done either.......or have ever been in possession of a gun, nor would I ever have a gun.
    Here is a quote from Police Chief Dreher:
    "As a result of that narcotics purchase, members of the narcotics team obtained a search warrant for that same address. As they were executing the search warrant, they announced themselves before they forced open the door. Once the door was forced, the female inside began shooting at the police officers. The officers returned fire," said Chief Dreher.

    I don't think the problem is that they fired back, but rather the use of a no-knock warrant for a situation that probably didn't require one. If they were able to do an undercover drugs buy, then it would have been equally easy to execute a search without barging in the door.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jacobi
    Here is a quote from Police Chief Dreher:
    "As a result of that narcotics purchase, members of the narcotics team obtained a search warrant for that same address. As they were executing the search warrant, they announced themselves before they forced open the door. Once the door was forced, the female inside began shooting at the police officers. The officers returned fire," said Chief Dreher.

    I don't think the problem is that they fired back, but rather the use of a no-knock warrant for a situation that probably didn't require one. If they were able to do an undercover drugs buy, then it would have been equally easy to execute a search without barging in the door.

    I think the bold says it all. She was WRONG!

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    My grandmother is 99, a little older than this woman. She is hard of hearing. She is stone deaf when her hearing aids are out, and she sleeps without them.

    If this old woman was hard of hearing, she may not have heard the announcement. And I guarantee you, if someone kicked my door down in the middle of the night, I'd shoot first and ask questions later. Her niece states that the gun was given to her aunt specifically for the purpose of protecting herself. And no matter what the police are saying now, here is an original quote:

    Assistant Police Chief Alan Dreher called the killing "tragic and unfortunate" but said the officers were justified in returning fire.

    "You don't know who's in the house until you open that door," Dreher said Wednesday. "And once they forced open the door, they were immediately fired upon."


    She clearly did not fire upon the officers as they approached the house. The article states she lived in the "roughest" neighborhood around........she probably was primed to think the fact that her door was kicked down meant she was being robbed, or worse. CyberLaw, you can see from the quote from the Assistant Police Chief that the niece is not alone in stating that her aunt didn't fire upon the officers until the door went down.

    And for those of you questioning the presence of the NAACP and civil rights leaders, I'll share with you something I recently learned. These groups don't wait to be INVITED to come into a situation. They show up and offer help, often their help is more harmful than helpful, but there they are offering help when others around you are not. It is pure publicity for the NAACP and nothing more motivates them, IMO. We've recently had an incident nearby to my town where the NAACP showed up and attempted to exacerbate a situation between some poor black residents and the sheriff's department. They really stirred things up, and the residents were BEGGING them not to make the sorts of threats they were making, not to come to New Iberia any more and to leave the situation alone. So the fact they've shown up in this situation is not necessarily a mark against the family.......

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    Just for the record--she fired 5 shots hitting 3 officers. One officer was hit three times the others once. Their shirts clearly and boldy state POLICE on the front and back. I could understand ONE shot not 5. The niece is claiming that she didnt fire until they knocked the door down--how does she know any of this? She does not live there so she wouldnt.

    eta: I never claimed she fired prior to them knocking on the door, I said they announced themselves, knocked down the door then she fired. This does give one pause to think though--who in their right mind would give a 92 year old woman a gun? "We wont let ya drive Granny, but hey heres a gun to protect yourself" doesnt make sense to me at all.
    Last edited by Animal04216; 11-23-2006 at 02:02 PM. Reason: add something

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    Apparently an informant who was named in the search warrant has denied that he has bought drugs at the home. This conflicts with the story that undercover cops had earlier made a buy at that address. It's looking increasingly likely that the family was right all along and that the police simply got the address wrong.

    The feds have now been called in to investigate.

    http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/11/27/atl...ing/index.html

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    Quote Originally Posted by Animal04216
    Just for the record--she fired 5 shots hitting 3 officers. One officer was hit three times the others once. Their shirts clearly and boldy state POLICE on the front and back. I could understand ONE shot not 5. The niece is claiming that she didnt fire until they knocked the door down--how does she know any of this? She does not live there so she wouldnt.

    eta: I never claimed she fired prior to them knocking on the door, I said they announced themselves, knocked down the door then she fired. This does give one pause to think though--who in their right mind would give a 92 year old woman a gun? "We wont let ya drive Granny, but hey heres a gun to protect yourself" doesnt make sense to me at all.

    Sorry, Animal; usually I agree with your opines, but this is plain wrong. The lady had a gun to defend herself, and that's what she did, and quite well. It is incumbent on the police to know the full situation before they crash into someones home at gunpoint; little facts such as the owner is old, alone, and likely can't hear or see well. The informant said the cops were wrong, the neighbors said the cops were wrong, and a dead 88 year old says the same. Blaming the victim and those who sought to give her a measure of security is what stinks here. The woman was 88 years old and alone; there is no way conceivable to justify what was done to her. Even if drugs were dealt out of her house, do you think she knew and could be complicit, or could have stopped it if she wished?? Don't you think she'd live in a nice neighborhood where this wouldn't have happened if she could? Don't you think she would hear and see better if she could??
    I've cared for such elderly people in rough parts of Atlanta, and they are victimized already; now they have to be able to see and hear and react with the acuity of a young adult and if not, it's their fault. LE doesn't have to do surveillance on the house to assess the situation; they just go in and start blasting and if it goes bad, it's magically someone elses fault, and guess who that is. And the “price” of that "fault" is quite “steep”.

    Glad I'm not in Atlanta anymore,
    Crypto6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Animal04216
    I think the bold says it all. She was WRONG!
    Could she hear? She was 92.

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    Anyone who opens fire on the Police, will have to encounter fire power back. This women shot three Police Officers, if she did not die, do you really think that she would not be facing charges.

    This was not self-defence, she fired first.

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    Actually I am going to back up a bit on this one. They are now saying the informant claims he DID NOT buy from her house. I have a real problem with that if it is true. If the police are serving a no knock warrant, and announce themselves, and have the right house, by all means they have a right to shoot if they are shot upon. I will wait, with my opinion on hold for the time being, because something stinks in Atlanta!

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    Quote Originally Posted by SewingDeb
    Could she hear? She was 92.
    Actually they have corrected themselves she was 88 I believe--if I heard correctly on the news the other night.

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    Quote Originally Posted by crypto6
    Sorry, Animal; usually I agree with your opines, but this is plain wrong. The lady had a gun to defend herself, and that's what she did, and quite well. It is incumbent on the police to know the full situation before they crash into someones home at gunpoint; little facts such as the owner is old, alone, and likely can't hear or see well. The informant said the cops were wrong, the neighbors said the cops were wrong, and a dead 88 year old says the same. Blaming the victim and those who sought to give her a measure of security is what stinks here. The woman was 88 years old and alone; there is no way conceivable to justify what was done to her. Even if drugs were dealt out of her house, do you think she knew and could be complicit, or could have stopped it if she wished?? Don't you think she'd live in a nice neighborhood where this wouldn't have happened if she could? Don't you think she would hear and see better if she could??
    I've cared for such elderly people in rough parts of Atlanta, and they are victimized already; now they have to be able to see and hear and react with the acuity of a young adult and if not, it's their fault. LE doesn't have to do surveillance on the house to assess the situation; they just go in and start blasting and if it goes bad, it's magically someone elses fault, and guess who that is. And the “price” of that "fault" is quite “steep”.

    Glad I'm not in Atlanta anymore,
    Crypto6
    My point about giving her a gun was, at that age most are not allowed to drive. What if she were to accidentally shoot her niece or nephew? That is what doesnt make sense to me. Yes, I know ATlanta is not safe--I totally agree with that statement. Seems we are between a rock and a hard place when it comes to the safety of our elders! i don't know WHAT the solution is, but my opinion is that a gun is NOT the answer. Maybe families taking care of their own--the elderly living with them for their own safety. i just dont know, and I too have taken care of the elderly so I understand their need for being self sufficient. Just a very difficult situation all around!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Animal04216
    Actually they have corrected themselves she was 88 I believe--if I heard correctly on the news the other night.
    The Fulton Country medical examiners said her records indicate she was 88, but her relatives put her age at 92. She was either born before the great war or after...

    What is further troubling about this incident is now the idea that the police may have attempted a cover up:

    The informant said police called him and told him "you need to cover our ass."

    "It's all on you -- have to tell them about this Sam dude," the informant said police told him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberLaw
    Anyone who opens fire on the Police, will have to encounter fire power back. This women shot three Police Officers, if she did not die, do you really think that she would not be facing charges.

    This was not self-defence, she fired first.
    She lived in a high crime area and was terrified to even let her neighbors into her house when they were delivering her groceries. She is 90 years old and was in the residence by herself. Who knows if you she was even able to hear them identify themselves or see them clearly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Animal04216
    My point about giving her a gun was, at that age most are not allowed to drive. What if she were to accidentally shoot her niece or nephew? That is what doesnt make sense to me. Yes, I know ATlanta is not safe--I totally agree with that statement. Seems we are between a rock and a hard place when it comes to the safety of our elders! i don't know WHAT the solution is, but my opinion is that a gun is NOT the answer. Maybe families taking care of their own--the elderly living with them for their own safety. i just dont know, and I too have taken care of the elderly so I understand their need for being self sufficient. Just a very difficult situation all around!
    You’re absolutely right. Some of the elderly I knew had no family and some interacted poorly with the one they did have. It doesn’t seem the optimal solution to give an 88 year old a rusty gun, but then again I can’t fathom living where I’m terrorized by the grandkids of the people I grew up with. Some of these elderly can’t even venture outside for groceries without fear of getting robbed and/or beaten, and can’t get to the mailbox before the local hoods have snatched their only check for the month. Maybe in that world a rusty gun looks better.
    The 11 years I was in ATL, the city police did well by me, and my interactions showed them to be professional and well trained. I hope this is an aberration and not a trend.

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    Well her eyesight was not THAT bad after all she shot all three officers and did not miss.

    Now the "drug informant" has changed his story, he has said: They "forced" me to "tell them" they wanted me to "cover" their story. Gee I wonder if he will share in the "proceeds" of any lawsuit, and he is "enticed" to recant that he gave the cops any information that lead to this event.

    I doubt that this informant, wants to be held "indirectly" responsible for the death of this older women.........

    Things really just don't add, up but they will in time.......

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    Call me warped, but I would love to go out at the age of 92 in a blaze of gunfire!
    I do not intend to tiptoe through life only to arrive safely at death!

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