Officer involved shooting helped increase non-lethal options for police department

Published 5:54pm Friday, July 11, 2014

Every death is tragic and, when a grand jury decided to clear the Selma Police Department of any wrongdoing in a December, officer-involved shooting, we were reminded of a tragic incident.

In December, an unnamed Selma police officer shot and killed Ananias Shaw in an effort to defend himself. The fact that a Shaw’s life was taken is sad, especially considering the circumstances.

The community was quickly buzzing about the incident hours after it occurred. At the Selma City Council’s meeting following the shooting, it was one of the main topics of conversation.

In spite of Shaw’s death, the incident had a silver lining. The Selma City Council expanded the police department’s arsenal to include non-lethal options — stun guns and a non-lethal shot gun.

Stun guns certainly have their own controversies about usage, but there’s no doubt that, in most situations, a stun gun is a better idea than using a lethal weapon, such as a pistol.

Though it’s sad to be reminded of a tragic death, the incident ended up helping law enforcement prepare for future, similar situations.

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