Maine trooper justified in shooting at vehicle

PORTLAND (AP) — State attorney general William Schneider says a state trooper was legally justified in using his handgun to try to disable a motorist's car after a high-speed chase on the Maine Turnpike.

Investigators say 23-year-old Matthew Cole was driving an unregistered car with an expired inspection sticker when he fled from a trooper on Sept. 15 and crashed at Exit 42. Trooper Kyle Wells fired several shots after Cole, ignoring the trooper's instructions, began backing up toward him.

Neither Cole nor Wells were injured.

Schneider concluded Thursday that it was reasonable for Wells to believe he was being threatened with deadly force in the form of the moving car and that deadly force was necessary to protect himself and to stop the vehicle from getting back onto the highway.

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Likely whitewash of another episode of police overzealousness?

Until the federal court recently struck down giving cops the middle finger as a pretext for police arrest for civil disobedience, this Wells guy can be expected to shoot at your car, as he passes you on the interstate, for provocation for giving him "the finger" after reading about his incredulous and zaney shooting at the car in this article?

Sounds like an excellent candidate for some "use of deadly force" training.

I mean, strip away the usually sensationalization by the news staff and we probably have some embellishment of the facts ...i.e. the car was backing up and was "threatening" ...wink ....wink.

It is just as likely the Trooper was power tripping and somewhat emotional that this driver of an unregistered and uninspected (oh, my!) motor verhicle wasn't cooperating.

Then, he shoots it????

Just the appearance of nuttiness should give pause to the Attorney General ...and a decision to require automatic refresher training on the "use of deadly force" for any Trooper who fires their gun ...every time they fire it.


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