I have a little follow-up story to yesterday’s post with videos of a police shooting. This is a story about how a police officer pointed a gun at me once.
I was in high school, in Fort Worth, Texas, and I had been out with a friend of mine named Tony. As we were headed back home, Tony announced that he wanted to smoke a cigarette. Rather than simply lighting up in the car like a normal person, Tony decided that he wanted to stop the car at a local park and go have a smoke. He parked the car in the parking lot, and we walked out to a children’s playground so Tony could have his cigarette.
As he smoked, we saw a police car pull up behind Tony’s car. An officer got out and walked up to Tony’s car. He shined his flashlight inside.
We didn’t know what the officer was up to, but we figured that we should let him know we were there. We walked towards the car and called out to him.
He whirled, drew his gun, and yelled for us to put our hands in the air.
And he pointed the gun right at us.
I have thought about that moment many times since. We later learned that the officer was looking for an armed robbery suspect. Lord knows what he was thinking when we called out to him. Lord knows what was going through his mind when he ordered us to show our hands.
Many times since that day, I have thought about that episode. I have been thankful for the officer’s training. I have thanked my lucky stars that he kept his composure and didn’t pull that trigger.
But you know something? When the officer told Tony and me to get our hands in the air — guess what we did?
We got our hands in the air.