Cop Who Shot 13-Year-Old ID'ed As Iraq War Vet, Advocated Combat View Of Law Enforcement

Oct. 30, 2013

From Police State USA:

The officer who shot Andy Lopez has been revealed to be 48-year-old Sonoma County Deputy Erick Gelhaus, according to the Santa Rosa Press Democrat.

Gelhaus is a 24-year veteran of the department, an Iraq combat veteran, a firearms instructor, and a prolific writer and commenter on the internet.   He served in the Army National Guard from 2004 to 2010, and testified about dealing with insurgents in Iraq.  He advocates an aggressive, combat-like view of law enforcement.

He participates as a moderator on The Firing Line, an online forum for gun enthusiasts hosted by S.W.A.T. Magazine. There Gelhaus uses his real name and gives his opinions about a wide variety of law enforcement topics, touting his experience in combat.
He wrote for S.W.A.T. in 2008 that among the things he tells his trainees early on is that “Today is the day you may need to kill someone in order to go home.”

“If you cannot turn on the ‘Mean Gene’ for yourself, who will?” he wrote. “If you find yourself in an ambush, in the kill zone, you need to turn on that mean gene.”
Gelhaus writes that he is able to survive the “kill zone” by thinking of his family.  He summons his “mean genes” in order to make the split-second decisions while dealing with insurgents — in this case, children in residential California.

The deputy describes the job as his “calling” and loves participating in the “contact sport” of law enforcing.

He’s given verbose details about how to react in self-defense situations (using that term loosely here).  Prior to the killing of Andy Lopez, Gelhaus wrote about how to handle the aftermath of killing a person with a BB-gun.  The Press Democrat reported:
In one revealing thread, forum members debated whether the use of force is justified if someone brandishes or fires a BB gun at another person.

Gelhaus chimed in, writing that “It’s going to come down to YOUR ability to articulate to law enforcement and very likely the Court that you were in fear of death or serious bodily injury.”

“I think we keep coming back to this, articulation — your ability to explain why — will be quite significant,” Gelhaus wrote.
Gelhaus clearly knows the drill.  When shooting another person, no matter what the situation, one must convincingly articulate how much fear was felt during the time in the kill zone.  Whether those fears were honest and reasonable is anybody’s guess.

Let’s be clear:  There are situations when a person holding a toy gun could be viewed to be a deadly threat.  If an individual on the street actually points a perceived weapon at someone else, self-defense could be warranted by any reasonable standard.  The situation becomes very volatile when cops are paid to get confrontational with people who have literally done nothing except walk down the street with an item that scares them.  The innocent blood lies on the hands of the gun controllers and the enforcers who perpetuate gun control.

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