Fort Worth Police Shoot And Kill 72-Year-Old Who Checked On His Neighbor

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Jerry Wayne Waller, a 72-year-old who lived in east Fort Worth, Texas, heard his neighbor’s security alarm going off early Tuesday morning. He lived in an area where most people knew their neighbors, as well as others who lived down the street. So he went outside his house to see what was going on.

But the Dallas-Fort Worth police had already arrived to take care of things. They didn’t let Waller leave his own property alive.

From yesterday’s CBS-DFW television report:

The 72-year-old man didn’t even make it to the house across the street before he was shot. He died on his own property.

Waller reportedly was armed at the time — presumably a precaution before venturing into a potentially dangerous situation, however unlikely it might have seemed. But the police presence raised the potential for danger considerably.

“We heard five shots,” said Becky Haskin, a former Fort Worth city council member who lives in the area. “They were just rapid-fire; one after the other.”

A spokesman for the police department said the officers “felt threatened by the man with the handgun and he was shot.”

At the scene after the killing, Haskin said the badged offenders were “sobbing uncontrollably and very distraught.”

Viewed from a distance, those among the Dallas-Fort Worth police who’ve perpetrated this and similar crimes must be among the most trigger-happy and skittish cops the whole of America’s municipal police population has to offer.

On Wednesday — i.e., only one day ago — we shared the story of the latest civilian death at the department’s hands, that of 350-pound asthmatic Jarmaine Darden, whom DFW cops shot with a Taser, from couch to floor, three times before he stopped breathing and died. That killing marked the fifth documented time DFW police have killed someone with a Taser since 2001.

Haskin said Waller and his wife were good neighbors who always took pride in their community.

“They are just a nice retired couple that loved working in their yard, having family over, and grandkids.”

No police were hurt in Waller’s killing.

Personal Liberty

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

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  • Harold Olsen

    Did the scumbag cops yell a warning to their victim or did they just open fire? I’m willing to bet it was the latter. No warning. Just shoot to kill. Shoot first and ask questions later. “We carry badges. We are free to do as we please, even kill people.”

  • Citizen Soldier

    This is 100% Federal and State authorized murder on “we the people”…, Not only is this barack “barry soetoro” hussein obama administration totally corrupt and illegal but they are stupider than a rock in the ocean. When they let criminal illegals out of jail and have ordered their police to kill normal patriot Americans who have guns to defend themselves against criminals….. then something is very very wrong here people!!! Charges of 1st degree murder and misuse of power should be filed immediately by the good people of that area….

  • BarrackHussein

    Now there is some police officers who absolutely should not be…
    these union pricks will work 20 years and retire on full pension while you work until you are 70 to pay for them… that is, they will unless they get jumpy and kill you first.

  • altonrobinson

    I guess the man should have stood in his window and just shot anyone or any thing he saw moving in his neighbors property. Wonder how the “cops”, and I use the term loosely would have felt about that? Cops are just not cops any more. They must really dredge the bottom of the barrel to get what they come up with.

  • texasconstitutionista

    I dont see any mention of the cops trying to identify or converse with him before they pulled the trigger. I guess now days cops just shoot at anything that moves

  • Quester55

    It’s Sadly Funny, Since Obama Flip, Flopped on his Word of NO Gun Control Laws in his second term, More CITIZENS have Been SHOT by the POLICE Just for the CRIME of LIVING, Than all of the Guilty Crooks, all together!

    Just one Useful way for These Trigger Happy GOONS to Aid Obama in the Reduction of, ” Non-Productive Citizens.”

    Just Remember, These Cops can Murder ANYONE for ANY Reason & HIDE behind their Badge, Even your Pets are not safe.
    Welcome to the Acts of the NEW WORLD ORDER & Government

    • mamamia

      Uh, nothing to do with Obama. This has been happening for years!

      • vicki

        In case you failed to notice, obama is the acting president so it does indeed have something to do with obama. He is the current leader (or supposed to be).

        • Jeff

          This happened in Texas. Obama is not the Governor of Texas. That would be Rick Perry. If you want to blame someone other than the officers, police culture, or the genius administrator who paired two raw recruits, blame him.

          • vicki

            obama is the elected leader of this country.

  • manuel

    Thugs, a.k.a., cops don’t usually yell warnings to folks they intend to shoot/kill. Not sure when all this will end, but it needs to sooner than later. Ft Worth is a hot bed of progressives, so killing law abiding citizens is not high on their priorities to protest, but someday, it will be one of their own.

  • David169

    I would like to know more before I draw a conclusion about the conduct of the police in this shooting. As we are seeing the federalization of police forces has resulted in an increase in senseless shootings, beatings and arrests by LEOs. Texas for all of their “come here to be free again” advertising is certainly getting a lot of negative advertising from their police forces conduct towards citizens legally bearing arms.

    • Jana

      Here is a report from one of the News papers in FT Worth:

      FORT WORTH — The family of a 72-year-old homeowner killed by police said Wednesday they were “disturbed” by the way the Fort Worth Police Department presented the man’s death to the media.

      The city’s mayor promised a “full and transparent investigation” of the case.

      Jerry Waller, who police said was armed with a pistol, was shot to death in or near his garage about 1 a.m. Tuesday. The incident began when an alarm sounded in the house across the street from Waller’s on North Havenwood in east Fort Worth.

      Police officials said Tuesday it wasn’t clear how two responding
      officers — identified by police as Richard A. Hoeppner and Benjamin B. Hanlon — ended up at Waller’s house. They encountered him with a pistol inside or near his garage. One or both officers opened fire, hitting Waller multiple times.

      Officials said the officers — both of whom graduated from the police
      academy last November — identified themselves to Waller, but felt
      threatened.

      “When I went out there, the place was totally dark,” said Kathy Waller, the victim’s wife. “All I could see were flashlights.”

      She said her husband might have mistaken the officers for burglars, just as they apparently mistook him for a suspect.

      “They just came down my driveway, flashing lights, and he thought it
      was burglars going after his car,” Mrs. Waller said Tuesday night.

      The family released a statement Wednesday that said they were “deeply troubled by the police department misrepresenting details of the incident in their interviews with the media,” and that Jerry Waller’s
      body was found in his own garage.

      “We were disturbed by suggestions that police may have felt
      threatened by a man in his own garage faced with unknown trespassers wielding flashlights,” the family’s statement read. “We look forward to a full investigation of this terrible incident that will lead to
      meaningful steps to ensure that nothing like this will happen again.”

      Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price released this written statement on Wednesday evening:
      “No words can describe the pain the Waller family is going through, and I hope we all continue to pray for this family who’s lost a husband, father and grandfather. I’m also praying for the officers involved in this terrible tragedy. There are a lot of unanswered questions, but I know this incident will be thoroughly reviewed from every angle. I talked with Chief [Jeff] Halstead, and he assured me there would be a full and transparent investigation — that’s what I expect, and that’s what this family deserves.”

      The Fort Worth Police Department Major Case Unit is heading up the
      investigation. Wednesday afternoon, the department released the
      identities of the officers involved and revealed both were hired in
      October 2012.

      Fort Worth police Sgt. Kelly Peel said the department “will conduct a
      thorough and transparent investigation,” which could take several weeks to complete. Once the investigation is completed, it will be reviewed by Chief Halstead.

      • Jeff

        Apparently, even the police are adopting the line “I felt threatened” to justify the unjustifiable. There was nothing wrong with classic self defense law and its objective, “reasonable person” standard. The new self defense laws, which appear to grant anyone who subjectively “feels threatened” to shoot and kill, have given license to those with more aggressive ideas of “self defense.” That sickness seems to have infected even cops who already have essentially a license to kill.

        Why the police (both raw recruits) did this is unknown. Clearly, the article is featured here because the victim was armed, the apparent intent being to demonstrate how government is crushing the 2nd Amendment. I wonder how many similar articles have been featured here concerning unarmed Black men killed by police. This is a tragedy that should not have happened. But one thing is pretty certain: Had the victim not had a gun, he’d still be alive today. One more victim of our gun culture!

        • Jana

          One more victim of them trying to use our gun culture as an excuse.

  • vicki

    From the OP:

    A spokesman for the police department said the officers “felt threatened by the man with the handgun and he was shot.”

    The clear message to the peasants is that they must NOT even appear to be threatening to the Royal Guard. Stay in their cages and let the Guard take care of it.

  • Lugnut

    I didn’t write this, I found on the internet and liked it so much I decided to put it here. It seems to fit with this senseless murder:

    The point of this isn’t to judge whether cops are justified in doing
    what they do. This has nothing to do with police training. And this
    isn’t just about American cops. This is about the perception that we,
    the public, have of you when you perform the following actions. It
    doesn’t matter if you disagree with these perceptions, because right or
    wrong, they exist. The point of this article is to simply let you know
    that we’re watching, and this is how we see things.

    1. When ten of you show up to make one arrest, it makes you look like cowards.

    On
    my way home from a bike ride a few weeks ago, I saw three arrests being
    made in under an hour in a relatively safe part of the city. At one of
    the incidents, eight police cruisers responded to make one arrest. The
    guy who was arrested was ejected for being too drunk in a bar. Just one
    guy, and he was drunk. He had a stupid moustache, hadn’t hurt anyone and
    was drunkenly walking home when he was tased and tackled by 3 cops
    before 6 police cruisers showed up in addition to the two that were
    there, for a total of 8 cruisers and 10 cops. The man was UNARMED.

    How
    much backup do you need? It’s one guy. If you can’t handle one drunk
    guy by yourself, you shouldn’t be a cop. Training tells you otherwise?
    Well stop
    being trained by pansies!

    2. When you tase somebody who isn’t trying to escape, it makes you look like lazy cowards.

    A
    taser isn’t a remote-control for people. Want to talk to someone? Then
    walk over to them and talk. Don’t tase them and expect them to
    cooperate. Also, when someone is being tased and is writhing in cardiac
    arrest on the ground, they aren’t “resisting arrest” by not getting on
    their knees and neatly kowtowing to your demands. They’re incapacitated.
    You look like idiots barking orders at them when they can’t move.

    Being
    a cop has certain risks associated with it. If you aren’t comfortable
    with those risks, don’t take the job. Always trying to minimize your
    risk of injury at the expense of others by being a taser-happy loonatic
    makes you look
    like lazy sissies.

    Tasing everyone you see
    because they might pose a risk to you is like spraying everything with a
    fire extinguisher so it doesn’t catch fire. Part of the problem might
    be that many cops are overweight and out of shape. If you fatheads can’t
    chase someone down, then you shouldn’t be cops. Studies have shown that
    not being a fatty is just as effective as using a taser.

    3. When you set up speed traps, it makes you look like you don’t have anything better to do.

    I
    get happy every time I see a speed trap, because I assume it means all
    criminals have been locked up, you’ve caught the guys who broke into my
    car on three separate occasions and my stolen property will be returned
    shortly, right idiots? Good job guys, take a break and make some scratch
    for the city.
    Because why the hell else would you be sitting on your tookus in a ditch if that wasn’t the case?

    People
    who speed are awesome. The last thing this world needs is more slow
    drivers. Traffic jams occur because of idiots braking prematurely.

    And
    when you pull people over, how about doing it in a place that doesn’t
    obstruct traffic? You know what’s just as “unsafe” as speeding? Having
    to swerve into another lane because your stupid car is blocking traffic.
    Every time I pass another cruiser parked in two lanes, backing up
    traffic for miles, it makes me punch myself in the jaw until I pass out.

    4.
    When you give out stupid tickets for rolling through stop-signs at 3
    AM, or closing down lemonade stands, it makes us think you’re morons.

    We
    know that “the law is the law.” We also know that you’re not
    instruction-executing robotic morons. When you harass us with BS fees
    and fines, it makes us question your judgement. We know that this kind
    of stuff is
    all about money; remember those cops in Florida who
    harrassed a 9 and 5 year old girl and forced them to close down their
    lemonade stand?

    The legal age for entering into contract in the
    United States is 18. So that effort to charge them fees by making them
    apply for a permit? Illegal. Law is the law, right? Arrest yourselves.
    And speaking of nepotism…

    5. We know you guys use the buddy system to get out of speeding tickets. And it infuriates us to no end.

    Cops
    have a code that basically amounts to always letting fellow cops go.
    When a cop pulls over an off-duty officer, the officer who was pulled
    over discreetly flashes his badge to let him know that he’s on the
    force, and he’s simply let go. You think we don’t know what’s going on,
    tough guy? It’s a courtesy not extended to anyone else, lest the officer
    is having a particularly good day and isn’t PMSing all over the
    highway.

    Sometimes you write tickets for going 1 over the speed
    limit, sometimes it’s 10. Then when you get called on doing something
    stupid like writing a ticket to someone for a law that shouldn’t be
    enforced and rarely is (like jay-walking in New York), you hide behind
    your tired mantra that it’s the law and that you have to be consistent.
    Except when you aren’t.

    6. When you flash your lights just to get through intersections, you look like jerks.

    I’ve followed cops who’ve done this, only to see them park their cruisers for coffee or lunch. And speaking of lunch…

    7. When you park in a red zone to eat, it makes you look like lazy jerks.

    The
    argument can be made that police officers need to be near their
    cruisers at all times in case of an emergency. Fine, but that doesn’t
    entitle you to eat at the most popular restaurants. If you want to eat
    at some trendy restaurant, park at a meter and pay, like everyone else.
    Can’t find a meter? Tough luck, go someplace else. Doctors, surgeons,
    rescue workers and security all have important jobs where people’s lives
    are at stake, and you don’t see their cars popped up on the curb,
    obstructing traffic and parked illegally so they can fill their fat
    faces with lunch. We know you’ll never get written a ticket (see #5), it
    infuriates us, and it makes us trust you less, and cooperate less.

    Now
    this is the part where I say “I know that police officers have a tough
    job,” but they don’t. Being a cop isn’t hard, it’s dangerous. There’s a
    difference. Being an engineer, teacher or airline pilot is hard. Being a
    logger, deep sea crab fisher, coal miner or firefighter is hard and
    dangerous. Being a cop is dangerous, but usually not hard. Driving
    around, issuing imbecillic tickets and filling out paperwork isn’t hard,
    it’s annoying.

    This is also the part where I say “now I know that
    most cops are good,” but I don’t. I only know two cops in real life,
    and they’re both awesome, but so is anyone I choose to call my friend.
    Most cops I see abuse their power every day by parking illegally,
    talking on their cellphones while driving, drifting in and out of lanes
    without turn signals, flashing their lights to get out of intersections
    and power tripping like crazy. If you’re a cop who’s reading this,
    rather than being butt-hurt by people’s perceptions of you, do something
    to change it. Write a fellow officer a ticket. Stick your neck out for
    us, rather than your colleague for a change. Do the right thing. We
    notice. And as for us: record cops. Record them all the time. Record
    them even if they’re not doing anything. Cops are cracking down on this
    and they’re trying to change the laws to make it illegal so they can’t
    be held accountable for breaking the law. They look up your plates every
    time they’re behind you at a stop, even if you haven’t done anything,
    just to check up on you. It’s time we started checking up on them; start
    watching the watchers!

  • Lugnut

    Cowards