Seattle Media Post Cop Shooting Video

The Seattle police shooting incident I mentioned in a recent column is back in the news today.

If you haven’t seen it yet, the Seattle Times, Seattle PI and KIRO 7 chose to post a dash camera video taken during the fatal shooting of carver John T. Williams. I’d imagine other Seattle news agencies will follow suit, and you’ll see it on all the evening broadcasts tonight. The actual shooting takes place outside the camera’s frame, unlike in our case surrounding the shooting of Matthew Netter, but the audio of the four gun shots and Officer Ian Birk’s verbal response is very clear.

Also unlike the Netter video, which the Kitsap County Prosecutor could view when determining whether or not the Silverdale shooting was justified, you don’t see Birk or his reaction at all following the shooting. His voice is audible as more law enforcement arrives though.

There is an editor’s note on the Times’ story, explaining what is shown in case readers want a warning about violent content. I don’t see anything similar on the KIRO or PI sites, or any further explanation from Times editors on the decision making. When all media jumps in the newsworthiness is fairly evident — though that’s not to say you can’t still stand on principle. But there was no public records fight like we had to deal with, which was a unique part of our case and behind my explanation to you all.

—David

One thought on “Seattle Media Post Cop Shooting Video

  1. ‘”Also unlike the Netter video, which the Kitsap County Prosecutor could view when determining whether or not the Silverdale shooting was justified”
    . Shooting someone 8 times is NOT JUSTIFIED..that’s murder There is no reason for that. and The Video.. The infamous video’s that citizens cant see
    .We don’t know what really happens. Just because the cop said that’s how it went down doesn’t mean it did.We don’t get to see the evidence that they claimed to have.
    A Federal law is needed making it a crime for police officers who commit acts of brutality and murder.Open police records in all states. This would give the public access to police records of misconduct.
    When a police officer breaks the law the majority of the time they get off easy, usually just getting a small slap on the wrist.Since Law Enforcement has so much more power over citizens such as yourself, it’s only fair to “balance the tables”. No one should be above the law!

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