Last week, not long after publishing my last post about police and their big unnecessary military toys, I came across this article in the RTD about one such armored vehicle getting into some action, the substance of which I’ve provided to save you a click:
A man was taken into custody this morning after he allegedly shot at a Virginia State Police SWAT team vehicle responding to a domestic disturbance call in Dinwiddie County.
State police Sgt. Thomas J. Molnar said James E. Taylor, 36, of Dinwiddie, was being held without bond at the Dinwiddie County Jail on 12 felony charges.
Taylor was charged with eight counts of attempted capital murder, one count of abduction, one count of manufacturing marijuana, one count of child endangerment, and one count of use of a firearm in the commission of a felony.
A sergeant with the Dinwiddie County Sheriff’s Office who initially responded to the call was slightly injured when he struggled with Taylor, and a woman who was with Taylor also was slightly injured. Both were treated at an area hospital and released. A juvenile male who was in the house throughout the incident was not harmed, Molnar said.
The incident, which began with a domestic disturbance call shortly before 11:30 p.m. Thursday, ended when the state police SWAT team entered the two-story home in the 15000 block of Boydton Plank Road shortly after 5 a.m. and took Taylor into custody without incident.
Boydton Plank Road, which was closed to traffic throughout the incident, reopened about 6 a.m.
Molnar said the Dinwiddie sheriff’s sergeant who was the first on the scene encountered Taylor and a woman outside the house, and the sergeant struggled with Taylor, who retreated inside the home.
At that point, other deputies and state police were called to assist, and when the state police SWAT vehicle arrived about 3 a.m., Taylor fired an undetermined number of shots, striking the vehicle once, Molnar said. Authorities did not return fire, Molnar said.
After the SWAT team entered the house and arrested Taylor, he was taken to the Dinwiddie sheriff’s office to be processed.
The investigation was continuing.
So what came first, the shooter or the SWAT truck? I suppose I can’t really speculate as to the accused’s motivations for firing a gun at the police. But according to the article, the standoff with this man went on for over four hours without him firing a shot, and only when the big armored show of force came into play did he respond with his gun. True the war car, being bulletproof, was probably a safer place for officers to be when the shooting started, but maybe it’s a situation in which no shots would have ever been fired had the police not escalated the situation by rolling up – to what started as a domestic disturbance – in a machine more properly suited for a war zone.