My counter-intuitive take on the video of Officer Joshua Lesher’s astounding reactions.

This was some sick police work by an Oklahoma police officer.

He makes it look easy.  He trails the subject (who has already tipped off danger signals prior to this scene), carefully eyeing his movements and behavior.

Ready, poised.  Prepared.

And that is what saved his life.

 

The video shows the moment that Noble Police Sgt. Joshua Lesher fired at Layland Ted Lewis Jr. after he pulled a gun on him following a traffic stop in December 2018.

The 6-second clip was shared on Twitter by James LoFranco, the former Mayor of the Village of South Blooming Grove and retired NYPD detective, along with the caption: “This is how fast it happens.”

This happened almost two-and-a-half years ago and Lewis was convicted in July of 2020, so it’s an old incident.  I can’t say why why it’s suddenly getting “play” now.  The media is sure lapping it up.

This is spectacular police work which owes a lot to mentally and physically razor sharp reactions by Officer Lesher.  His quick accuracy were precise and his read of the situation and potential trouble spots saved his life.  This is how police encounters can unfold under ideal circumstances.  Unfortunately, most circumstances in police work are not ideal.  In fact, I’d say like 99% are not.  Most police officers are not going to find their suspect’s motives handed to them on a platter in broad daylight while matching strides in a nice comfy jaunt from a strategically favorable angle and position in relation to the bad guy.  This does not detract from Lesher’s skillful work; I couldn’t have done it and I doubt many could.

Joshua Lesher

 

A darkly cynical part of me wonders just how many anti-police, BLM/Woke Defunders will opportunistically point to this as an example of how police can “easily” avert all those horrible situations where a poor innocent but murderous, drug-addicted “victim” is killed because he cannot follow simple police commands.  These are the type of people gratuitously simplify police work to dangerous and deadly levels of “easy as pie” and this video will give them much fodder.  They willfully fail to see that the events in this video were hardly typical in terms of setting, visibility, nature of surrounding group, time of day and physical context.

Ultimately, when rare examples of the elements falling harmoniously together to create the stage for heroic police action occur, exploitive people tend to dramatize the effortlessness of that which almost never presents itself in reality.  So when Life happens and the perfect storm falls to pieces, police can’t measure up to fantasies.

I suggest that, in today’s climate, examples of heroism like this do more harm than good for police image.

 

 

 

 

 

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