Video Shows Merle Hatch Taunting, Running at Cops With Broken Phone Receiver


Yeah, it really does sound like 'Suicide by Cops'. The part about how the officers didn't engage the subject and tried to keep their distance until a crisis team could arrive speaks well of the changes to procedure at the PPB. But what are the police to do when a combative subject with a weapon charges at them?

This is indicative of a larger social safety-net mental health crisis and not of malfeasance in the constabulary.
"Portland police still won't say how many shots were fired, what Hatch was doing in Adventist's emergency room, or whether the cops who shot Hatch had even thought about using less-lethal weapons..."


So this "GUN" that we've all been hearing about for days ad-nauseum turns out to have been a busted phone receiver... lovely. And for that, Portland cops gun down this man in a barrage of bullets [which could have struck innocent by-standers as well]. And that they're being all silent about the details is both typical and depressing, b/c it just shows that for all the damned grief this city's been put through, these pigs STILL refuse to change their behavior when it comes to dealing with people in a mental crisis. Gotta hand it to 'um though, turning a hospital parking lot into a bloodbath - i think that's a new one for PPB. Of course, this only means they'll have to up the ante. Perhaps these cops can slaughter someone in front of a daycare next? Why not?

So the pattern i'm noticing from these cops is, if you don't move at all you get tased or beat or pepper-sprayed. If you move an inch, deadly force. Ever noticed how Portland cops aren't at all good at gunning down VIOLENT ARMED CRIMINALS??? Seriously, when was the last time a cop here shot someone who was actually armed? Like, with a GUN???
It's dark, he's got something in his hand that is black and semi-shiny like a gun and a guard had told them he had a gun. What are you supposed to do, wait til he starta shooting, then shoot back? I can't tell if he was in shotgun bean-bag range or not. I don't think the beanbag round has a very long effective range. Looks like he got his wish.
These cops knew what the Hell that were doing. Fact is, they blew this guy away and they would've made that happen, regardless.

Now a busted phone receiver taken from a hospital is the first that I've heard. However, in the past cops have "mistaken" wallets, cameras, cell phones, and a hot dog for weapons. There have been plenty of national cases where cops have demanded identification, and people were shot or beaten b/c they [tried] to pull out their wallet to fetch id. Pigs would later claim they "thought" they were reaching for a weapon - which is a stock excuse any cop uses when he/she writes up a report.

And they also seem to think that taking down someone requires them to empty their guns 'til there's no more bullets left. Again, plenty of cases where autopsies done on police shooting victims showed that bullets had entered them AFTER they were laying on the ground. So, it would be really interesting to see A: how many shots were fired and B: what position was (Merle) Hatch in when he was shot.
Ujfoyt- In Iraq we were not allowed to fire unless fired upon, maybe we should hold cops to the same standard
@Iceprez - Cops are not soldiers. They didn't sign up for the same risks, or for the same reasons. If you want soldiers, call in the National Guard, declare martial law, and see how long the city puts up with that kind of "policing."
@iceprez, fired upon first, eh? So the drone program only bombs locations where people shoot at the drone first?

Based on your rules, you're telling me that a soldier standing a check point would not be able to shoot a person who is running directly at him and refusing commands to stop? Add in the subject was threatening (in English for some reason) to kill and/or take hostages. Are you trying to tell me that you would have called that a bad shoot? That is not what I seem to remember being how things operated when I took my turn in Afghanistan.

The ROE that is so often mentioned fully allows for soldiers to take pre-emptive action to protect themselves and others. Find the ROE itself here:…

For a concise perspective from this hardly right wing source (…) US ROE states: “US Forces may always use force, up to and including deadly force, to neutralize and/or detain individuals who commit hostile acts or exhibit hostile intent against US Forces or Coalition Forces.”

Note the "exhibit hostile intent" portion. Go sell your, "I needed to be fired upon first" somewhere else; it never existed.
In no way do i expect those guys to just sit there and, reasonably convinced that he had a gun, wait to be fired upon until deciding to put him down. The man was running at them, screaming and taunting, dramatically counting to 3 as he got closer and closer. The man got what he asked for. I see no hints of overreaction on the cops' parts -- the audio and video paint a pretty clear picture.

And @ DamosA:
Relax, man. Dude was white. All is well.