Home/Rod Dreher/Race, Crime, & Double Standards

Race, Crime, & Double Standards

The autopsy on Terence Crutcher, the Tulsa man shot to death by a police officer, came back — and they found that he was zonked on PCP at the time:

An unarmed black man shot dead by a white police officer after his car broke down on a city street last month was high on the hallucinogenic drug PCP in when he died, according to toxicology tests released by a medical examiner Tuesday.

Terence Crutcher, 40, had “acute phencyclidine intoxication” when he died Sept. 16. Officer Betty Jo Shelby was charged with first-degree manslaughter after his death, with a prosecutor saying she reacted unreasonably when Crutcher disobeyed her commands.

Medical literature says PCP, also known as Angel Dust, can induce euphoria and feelings of omnipotence as well as agitation, mania and depression.

Dr. Matthew Lee, a physician and pharmacist who also works for the Virginia Office of the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office, said the 96 nanograms per milliliter of PCP found in Crutcher’s system is more than enough to cause someone to be uncoordinated, agitated and combative.

“It’s on the high side, relative to causing some sort of impairment or intoxication,” Lee said.

Well, I’m sure that will add some perspective to the discussion, and that everybody will realize that situations aren’t always black and white. The officer who shot Crutcher said she recognized him as someone on PCP, which meant she feared for what he might do, given that suspects on PCP are known to act maniacally, with superhuman strength. She is now charged with manslaughter. I don’t know if she is guilty of manslaughter; the judge or jury will decide that. What I do know is that this is not simply a case of a racist cop executing a black man who was just going about his business.

But that fact doesn’t fit the preferred narrative, so it’s going to be downplayed.

In other race-related violence, police in Alabama have arrested four black men on suspicion of beating the hell out of a white high school kid known for his pro-police “Blue Lives Matter” sympathies:

Four former Sylacauga High School students have been arrested today in the assault of 17-year-old Brian Ogle, officials say.

Ogle was reportedly beaten by a group of people the night of Sept. 30th in the parking lot of Old Ace Hardware. His mother told us he was attacked because he made pro-police statements on social media, and says she thinks it is a hate crime. Ogle was found bleeding from his head on Friday around 10 p.m. He was transported to the Coosa Valley Medical Center and later transported to UAB by helicopter. He reportedly suffered skull fractures and internal bleeding.

Sylacauga Police Chief Kelley Johnson says all four that were arrested are between the ages of 18 and 20, and former SHS students.

20-year-old Quartez Lamar Walker, 19-year-old Bobby Ronchea Brown, 18-year-old La Noah Grant Ealy Jr., and 20-year-old Daveon Shamareya Nix were all arrested by Sylacauga Police and charged with assault.

Here’s a report with more detail about what happened:

Brandi Allen told Fox affiliate WBRC that her son, Brian Ogle, suffered a skull fractures in the brutal attack following a Friday-night football game.

“Apparently he was hit with something — what is presumed to be the butt of the pistol on his face,” she said. “He has stitches and he’s got bruising, real bad bruising on his shoulder. There’s a lot of wounds on the back of his head from being hit as well.”

“Instead of us planning for his 18th birthday, we’re here. Why? Because he made a statement that he backs the blue,” Allen told the news station.

“I’m trying to understand how anyone — I don’t care the color of their skin — could do this to another human being.”

Does anybody have the slightest doubt that if this were a case of a gang of Alabama white boys charged with beating a black boy so badly over his Black Lives Matter sympathies that it fractured his skull and put him in intensive care, that this would be a national crisis requiring the full deployment of Anderson Cooper to the scene? That there would be a media vigil on the hospital lawn, with a long line of Experts™ trying to help viewers discern whether this incident meant that Alabama had reverted to the days of slavery, or merely Jim Crow?

Does Brian Ogle’s life matter? The way we are allowed to talk publicly about race and crime in this country is so dishonest.

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. A veteran of three decades of magazine and newspaper journalism, he has also written three New York Times bestsellers—Live Not By Lies, The Benedict Option, and The Little Way of Ruthie Lemingas well as Crunchy Cons and How Dante Can Save Your Life. Dreher lives in Baton Rouge, La.

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