Monday, February 15, 2010

Veteran SWAT Members Says FBI Did Abdullah Takedown Right

At least one well qualified expert believes local agents did the right thing in the operation in which Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah was shot, according to an article in today’s Detroit News. (“FBI correct in shooting, ex-agent says”).

The retired FBI agent, Gregory Stejskal, isn’t part of an official investigation, and his opinion is just that--only an opinion. But he provides an expert point of view that’s been needed to balance the irresponsible accusations being made by CAIR’s Dawud Walid, and professional rabble-rousers like Abayomi Azikiwe of the Michigan Emergency Committee Against War and Injustice--accusations being lent faux legitimacy by the likes of John Conyers.

Stejskal’s opinion that “the bureau acted properly and that its agents will be exonerated,” is based on his own review of the available reports and talking with FBI agents about what happened, in addition to his own long years of experience as a team leader on the SWAT team.
It is FBI policy to use over­whelming force when arresting a suspect believed to be armed and dangerous, Stejskal said. A dog is sometimes used to help subdue a suspect who has refused to sur­render, he said. Agents would have been justi­fied in firing if Abdullah had reac­hed for a weapon, let alone hav­ing brandished a weapon and fired three shots, as Stejskal said he understands Abdullah did and as a person familiar with the in­vestigation told The Detroit News.

In a space of three to four sec­onds, four agents fired an average of five shots each, striking Abdul­lah 20 times, with one shot creat­ing two wounds for a total of 21 entry wounds, according to the medical examiner’s report and a person familiar with the investi­gation.“Once you’ve made the deci­sion to use deadly force, you fire until the threat is eliminated,” Stejskal said.
It sounds reasonable. Walid and his pals have been figuratively waving Abdullah’s bloody shirt as proof that the task force used excessive force in taking him down. Otherwise, their rhetorical argument goes, why was he shot so many times? Walid and his cohort have never denied that Abdullah opened fire after being commanded to surrender by task force agents. Their hugely unreasonable assumption has been that a shootout, once it’s begun, ought to be a highly controlled event carefully choreographed by lawmen to achieve minimum damage to the bad guy.

Stejskal also explains why Abdullah’s corpse was wearing handcuffs.
FBI procedures called for Ab­dullah to be immediately hand­cuffed when the agents ap­proached, he said. Agents would have then checked for vital signs, found that he was already dead, and would have not disturbed the shooting scene by removing the handcuffs, he said.
Now that he’s running out of theories, Walid is saying “The reality is that none of us were at the scene. We re­ally don’t know what happened.”

Now he says he doesn’t know what happened. Not really knowing what happened hasn't kept him and his Black Panther buddies for 3½ months from telling the black and Muslim communities that Abdullah’s death was an assassination, and the subsequent investigations a cover-up.

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