Friday, September 5, 2008

No winners in Stephens ruling

Most around town are not surprised by today's ruling from Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh that says no laws were broken when two Akron police officers shot and killed Jeffrey Stephens back in July.

Stephens is the father of 12 who was shot 22 times when he reached for a gun in his waistband in the early morning hours of July 5th.

First .. see it from the officers' point of view: They were responding to a call of "shots fired" in the neighborhood and came across Stephens who had a gun.

Now .. from Stephens' point of view: He was awaken by gunfire, possibly at his home, and grabbed his gun to protect his home and family .. including his son who outside and possibly in a fight at the time.

You can imagine the energy inside both when they came together in the darkness.

The ending is just sad .. and as bad as the community is feeling for the Stephens family, I can only imagine how hard this has been for the officers Joseph Sidoti and Michale Miles.

While civil suits are sure to follow, a ruling against the officers would have sent the wrong message to local police, who are face far more gunmen on the streets of Akron then ever gets reported on the news.

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