An Ohio cop is making national news for not shooting and killing an 11-year-old black boy for carrying a BB gun, which is normally a death sentence for black people in the Buckeye State.
Columbus police officer Peter Casuccio, who is white, was responding to a call of “two young male blacks” with a gun on Saturday when he came across the boy and his 13-year-old friend, who is also black.
“This is getting kids killed all over the country,” Casuccio tells the kids, according to his bodycam footage, which was posted on Facebook Monday by the Columbus Police Department along with the phrase a “lesson learned.”
Here is a segment of the conversation as reported by NBC News:
> “In today’s world, listen, that thing looks real bro,” Casuccio says after taking the BB gun from the 11-year-old.
> The boys respond to the officer with a few “yes sirs” and an apology.
> “How old are you, boy,” Casuccio asks them. “Do you think I want to shoot an 11-year-old? Do you think I want to shoot a 13-year-old?,” he says after they respond with their ages.
> “I pride myself on being a pretty bad hombre cause I got to be. Don’t make me,” Casuccio adds.
> Later in the video, Casuccio addresses the 11-year-old and his mother, saying that when he pulled up to the boys, the youngest pulled the BB gun out of his waistband, then dropped it.
> “He could have shot you for that. You know that?” the mother asks her son.
> “Your life hasn’t even gotten started yet, and it could have ended. Cause I wouldn’t have missed,” Casuccio reiterates. “I want you to think about that tonight when you go to bed. You could be gone.”
In November 2014, Cleveland police shot and killed 12-year-old Tamir Rice for playing with a pellet gun in a public park. Three months earlier, Beavercreak police shot and killed 22-year-old John Crawford, who was holding a BB gun he found in an aisle at Walmart and was walking around the store with it while talking to his girlfriend on the phone.
Ohio is an open carry state but in those two shooting deaths, police did not even bother to find out if the guns were legal or not.