Tulsa Officer Betty Shelby Charged With First Degree Manslaughter

Officer Betty Shelby Charged

Officer Betty Shelby was arrested today on charges of manslaughter

Tulsa Officer Betty Shelby Charged With First Degree Manslaughter

Tulsa, OK – The district attorney in Tulsa Oklahoma released today that charges have been filed against Tulsa Police Officer Betty Shelby for first degree manslaughter.  The hasty charges come less than a week after the deadly shooting was partially caught on tape, leaving much to the interpretation of the media.

District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler said in a press conference, “In the matter of the death of Terence Crutcher, I determine that the filing of the felony crime of manslaughter in the first degree against the Tulsa Police officer Betty Shelby is warranted”.  He continued that Officer Shelby should be “presumed innocent”, until a judge or jury finds her guilty.

The shooting, which occurred on a Tulsa city street last Friday, was short on evidence and unclear.  The attorney for Officer Shelby met with the press and stated that she believed, as a drug recognition expert, that Crutcher was on PCP due to behavior.  He added that this was not done “out of hate or anger”, as some in the media have suggested.

The wisdom passed by the DA in not rushing to judgment should have been passed to the Tulsa Chief Chuck Jordan, who immediately admonished her.  Jordan called her use of force captured on video, “Very disturbing.  It’s very difficult to watch”.  Adding that, “We will achieve justice, period.”

Watching footage of the shooting does not give the proper vantage point in which the officer had.  It also does not take into account behaviors that put the officer in a defensive mindset.  The criticism he offered early captivated the media, who quickly villainized the 11 year veteran officer.

While I understand the Chief’s desire to avoid a riot, like we are seeing in Charlotte now, it cannot be done at the expense of due process.  Comments that spark outrage will most certainly taint the process.

The latest status on Officer Shelby reports that she is planning to turn herself in to face the charges sometime today.

We will keep you posted as updates become available.

  • WeAllWin
    • vanwertfan

      possibly

    • Pam

      Punishment is up to 4 years in prison is what I read.

      • WeAllWin

        Minimum 4 years.

        Penalties Felony. Punishable by imprisonment for at least four years.

  • Vic

    BS due to a liberal media & racist administration spreading lies & racism.

    • Derpy Derp

      And that liberal camera altering the footage to make her look guilty, that’s sarcarsm btw, you seem dumb

  • Jim Cunningham

    Go with a trial by judge!

  • Rachel Chappell

    Even if a shooting is found to be unjustified, no officer should be treated like a criminal over it. Unless they can prove malice or show the officer reacted in a vicious way, then how can they justify charges like this? Is it it not bad enough that they lose their careers, sometimes even when the court finds no wrongdoing? If we see a lot less people lining up to apply for job in LE, it won’t be shocking.

    • Sabin Sanders

      That’s why the charge is manslaughter instead of murder. If the charge were murder, I’d agree with you as a murder charge presumes intent, manslaughter does not.

      I have nothing but respect for the job law enforcement officers do and I know that I wouldn’t want to take on those stresses myself. That being said, officers have the same responsibility that any gun owner does to use good and proper judgement before using their weapon and taking a life. The expectation of good judgement is even greater for law enforcement because of the authority they wield. When in a position of authority over life and death the possibility of that authority being misused always exists and when it happens, wantonly or otherwise, those entrusted with that authority have to be held accountable.

      • Rachel Chappell

        First degree manslaughter. That requires some sort of pre-meditation they say. The assumption is that they’ll try to bargain it down to 2nd degree if things go that far.

        • Sabin Sanders

          I’m certainly no attorney, but my understanding of manslaughter is that no intent or premeditation is required. The principal difference (again, as I understand it) is that murder requires the intent to take life, manslaughter requires no intent.

          Taken from the website “Law Firm of Oklahoma” (and I make no claims as to it’s veracity): “Murder, which may be charged as either first degree or second degree
          murder, is often marked by intent. Manslaughter, on the other hand, may
          occur as a result of criminal negligence or rash actions in the heat of
          passion.” (link: http://www.lawfirmofoklahoma.com/practice-areas/manslaughter )

          -EDIT- Statute citation further down that same page:

          “First degree manslaughter is defined in 21 O.S. § 711, and it occurs when a death results from one of three specific criteria:

          When perpetrated without a design to effect death by a person while engaged in the commission of a misdemeanor.
          When perpetrated without a design to effect death, and in a heat of passion, but in a cruel and unusual manner, or by means of a dangerous weapon; unless it is committed under such circumstances as constitute excusable or justifiable homicide.
          When perpetrated unnecessarily either while resisting an attempt by the person killed to commit a crime, or after such attempt shall have failed.”

          • Rachel Chappell

            I only repeated what a lawyer on the news said. I’m no expert, and I guess we’ll see what happens with the case. Terrible thing all around.

  • NewWest 123

    This sounds more like he got that midnight call from DOJ (Holder in a dress)! These people are relentless and it’s all,on purpose!

  • Patrick Wallace

    She need to get 25 to life!

  • Derpy Derp

    Fry piggy!

    • pete480

      Nope. She’ll go on with her life while that POS thug rots in the ground.

  • Patrick Wallace

    I bet she wish she never pulled that trigger now!

    • Rachel Chappell

      Did you hear her voice seconds after she had? She was horribly upset the moment it happened.

      • TheSilentObserver

        So is an apology and some regret supposed to fix it?

        • Marg

          Glad she took this thug drug dealer out! Saved tons of kids from him passing them PCP! He had just got out of prison 4 months ago from his last dealing charge! Good riddance to trash!

          • Patrick Wallace

            And good riddance to her and her career as a cop! Lol!

          • dd845

            and the black was high on PCP ???
            another druger off the street !!!

        • Rachel Chappell

          Apologies and regrets don’t undo anything, but it shows a real lack of malice or evil intent. A lack of hatred or viciousness.

    • Marg

      STFU thug!

      • Patrick Wallace

        Nop! Hope she have a good cell mate! Lol!

        • gingerdog

          “Nop.”
          Nope
          “Hope she have a good cell mate?”
          Hope she HAS a good CELLMATE.

          Your grasp of basic third-grade grammar is what is “LOL.”

          • Patrick Wallace

            You sound like your mad!

          • CC

            You’re*

          • Patrick Wallace

            This is not an English class! BTW I have a BS in science and a minor in psychology.

        • Adam

          hope all police go on strike in your town and see how well you cope without them for a day 😀

          • Patrick Wallace

            That would be a blessing in my neighborhood.

          • Adam

            you wouldn’t have a neighborhood after 24 hours lol, but then again sounds like you are someone that breaks the law often and probably in a gang!!

          • Patrick Wallace

            I’m not in a gang, I work hard for my money, and i have no criminal record. But I hate bad cops!

        • 528 Hz

          She’s only been charged. Not convicted, dingleberry.

  • Michael Mansfield

    Another political prosecution. Why didn’t this go to the grand jury?

    • Vicky DaMota

      Because Obama /Lynch said so, they are the supreme rulers!

  • Vicky DaMota

    I saw Loretta Lynch adding her two cents in on this, ironic seeing how she would not prosecute Hillary when it was as obvious as the nose on your face! It only works when it fits her agenda.

    • Deborah Runnels Bailey

      I thought the same thing.

  • Bruce L Drucker

    Has the toxicology screen on the autopsy even come back yet to determine whether Mr. Crutcher was in fact under the influence of any drugs or alcohol as has been suggested in multiple media outlet reports? If that tox screen is positiveher defense attorney should have a field day destorying the argument that she acted in a reckless manner, or with callous disregard or was unjustified in using deadly force against an unstable individual who refused to comply with lawful commands and took actions she interpreted as threatening. Sounds a little like the prosecutor in Baltimore who acted out of expediency to defuse a tense situation and we know how that turned out for the police officers and her.

    • TheSilentObserver

      So by that logic, we should shoot and kill all people who smoke marijuana, sniff cocaine, inject heroin, pop pills, etc. Gee, that’s quite a large percent of the population!

      But of course I just wanted to check with you, since by your argument, you think anyone who uses drugs should be shot? Just asking.

      • Bruce L Drucker

        Not at all. What I am saying is that when an officer encounteers someone and that person’s behavior is erratic, then they become increasingly uncooperative, then they refuse to comply with lawful commands in a manner which constitute in the officers experience an increase on the threat scale (walking back to the vehicle when told to stop has been a behavior that in multiple situations has resulted ultimately in officers being shot and wounded seriously or killed) it places the officer in an increasingly defensive state of mind thereby increasing the likelihodd deadly force will be deployed. Further if the officer has experience and training in drug recognition and believes the drug to be a psychotropic like PCP, Angel Dust, LSD etc the threat level rises even more for the officer, the public (should the susppect get in the car and drive away resulting in a pursuit endangering lives) or have a weapon in the car that may be turned on the officer or others.
        The key issue in this case is what was Officer Shelby’s state of mind when she pulled the trigger. She contends she believed Mr. Crutcher based on his behavior leading up the the shooting became an increasing threat and she thought from her perspective at the time his hand positions indicated to her he was either trying to get into the car or his clothing for a weapon. The fact that there were multiple officers there at that point, that he was still not complying with commands, that he appeared too be under the influence of something, and his movements all contributed to her assessment that he posed a potentially lethal threat so she fired ONCE.
        If he was in fact intoxicated under the influence of the PCP or Angel Dust found in the car it would explain the behavior she described as escalating the threat potential she believed was occurring leading her to fire. Conversely, if the tox screen is completely clean it would operate more in favor of those that say her description of his behavior is inconsistent with that of the man they knew.
        My point is that there seems to be more of a political reason to charge at thhis point than an evidentiary reason. We saw it happen in Baltimore in the Freddie Gray case and the outcomes there did no one any good. Least of all the cause of civil rights or justice for all americans black white or other.

        • Derek M

          I don’t know about you, but whenever I’m on PCP I can melee 10 officers, give-or-take, yet still have to use a cane to stand up straight.

        • TheSilentObserver

          Okay, thank you for engaging in discussion with me and establishing your point. However, after reading your argument which you centered around a person not complying with demands, and the possibility of the person being under the influence of drugs, I offer you this excerpt from a recent incident where the suspect both refused to comply, and was under the influence of drugs, yet was apprehended peacefully:

          “Joseph Parker, 34, of Wakefield, was driving through a construction zone when police asked him to slow down at about 12:40 a.m. Tuesday morning, police said.

          Instead, Parker allegedly jumped out of his car and punched one officer, Lt. Jeremiah Goodwin, in the head. He then headed towards a second officer. Goodwin fell on concrete after Parker punched him, and suffered a concussion.

          That started a violent spree that included attacking three officers who tried to arrest him, and three more cops once he was booked at the police station, authorities said.

          Police said Parker appeared to be on drugs during the alleged attack, screaming “F— you cops with your guns”

          I ask you then, if according to your argument about how an officer should feel threatened in such a situation as described above, why, in this situation in Tulsa did the officers not handle it in other ways? The situation could have been handled differently, but instead the officers chose to act on their own assumptions and pre-disposed fears.

          • Bruce L Drucker

            The answer is not every officer has the same experience base, the same emotional makeup, identical training, the same physical characteristics all of which go into how they will perceive and react to perceived threats.since the officer has now been charged with 1st degree manslaughter it is obvious the DA thinks her reaction was unreasonable. The DA in the Freddie Gray case in Baltimore prosecuted 6 officers believing they acted unreasonably. All were acquitted.
            Only time will tell us now.
            But all officers don’t react the same in every situation. They are only human.

  • Jenna

    This conviction will likely end like Baltimore. Ferguson and George Zimmerman. Political Correctness will be the death of America.

    • Marg

      It will! No jury will ever convict her after watching that dead thug put his hands down and reach for something in his pocket! They she will sue Tulsa so bad!

      • Samantha Torres

        Marg but why is he a thug? What happened to wounding people or just tasing them ? Why must when it comes to colored people because he’s not a suspect, cops draw their guns and shoot? I’ve seen cases of white people shooting at cops , attaching cops and they walk away completely ok? Were their life’s not in danger? What about a colored person that scare cops? And why must it always be a thug? If he was white … he would’ve walked away alive. Or called mentally ill

        • Eddie

          You don’t simply wound people when you think they are going for a weapon. This isn’t a racial shooting. Yeah, when the white person walks away in handcuffs its because he surrendered and poses no threat. Their life was in danger but he gave up so he no longer poses a threat to use lethal force.. Now here he is posing a threat by possibly reaching for a weapon and not listening to police commands.

        • 528 Hz

          She called him a thug most likely because the guy just served nine years in prison for drug trafficking and he was in possession (and likely under the influence) of PCP. Not sure how you don’t understand this, but when an officer asks you to keep your hands up and get down on your knees, walking 30 feet and putting your hands down or putting your hands where the officer can’t see them poses an immediate threat to the officer. And a taser is no match for a person who is potentially reaching for a gun. Tasers don’t incapacitate a person immediately – and at a distance, they miss. Try tasing someone who is reaching for a gun and you will likely end up shot and dead. This has nothing to do with color and everything to do with the actions of the individual.

          And again… more whites are killed by police – justified or otherwise.

          • Patrick Wallace

            That’s because blacks only make up 13% of the population in the United States of course they’re going to be more whites killed than blacks by police but if you look at it perhaps we are way ahead of the whites being killed by police.

      • Patrick Wallace

        That’s what you’re hoping for, but that would never happen she’s going to rot in jail.

  • How Not To Play The Game

    …..when your body politic is as rotten to the core as the USA’s is depicting out right pieces os as anything other than what they are is how the overlords roll.

  • Derek M

    Is there something other than being an 11 year veteran officer that qualifies her to be a “drug recognition expert” or is that a hollow title?

    • Rachel Chappell

      She’d undergone drug training.

      • Derek M

        Can you comment on how long that last is undergone?

        • Rachel Chappell

          I can’t, because the articles I’ve read said only that she’d undergone specialized drug recognition training and had been given drug recognition officer as a sort of secondary title. It did not specify length of the training.

    • Rob McMahon

      Assuming Oklahoma uses the curriculum from the IACP, it’s fairly extensive and not at all easy to complete.

      http://www.decp.org/training/

      • Derek M

        Appreciate the reply. Her “expertise” is 60 hours, at most; unless I’m missing something.

        Pretty sure I’m also a “drug recognition expert” thanks to D.A.R.E.–Most people in their 30s are too.

  • TheSilentObserver

    Do you people believe police officers lives matter more than everybody else’s? Just a genuine question passing through.

    • Marg

      I;m not a cop, but yes, cop’s lives matter 1 Million times more than drug dealing criminal thugs!

      • TheSilentObserver

        I didn’t mention “drug dealing criminal thugs”. Do you rank officers lives over the lives of your own children, or family members?

        • Derek M

          You’re mistaking that guy for a human being right now.

  • Marg

    Too bad this poor cop didn’t have ESP to know if this dead thug was reaching for a gun! Who would want to be a cop and have to deal with these savages any more! Their pay should be doubled!

  • Greg Martin

    Seems the phone calls from the whitehouse, visits by Sharpton, BLM coming to town, fears of riots, can make a difference… This might be a record in Tulsa County for how fast charges were filed… They beat the tox test results, that almost never happens

    • Rachel Chappell

      I know, right? I doubt they were even finished with the autopsy and toxicology, but…Charlotte happened, so I guess they wanted to shush people by throwing Betty under the bus.

  • Wendel ‘BlackWolf’ Kurz

    I wonder if they are throwing her under the bus to aviod a riot.

    • Jake Sykora

      Is it possible — just *possible* — that they’re charging her because she acted improperly?

    • pete480

      Without a doubt.

  • Shawn Molnar

    Absolutely disgraceful that murder charges be filled against an officer for doing her job. Something went wrong. The “victim” was a man NOT complying with officers orders AND acting suspicious and shady. When you do that, you’re at that point assuming 100% responsibility for what happens next. I fully believe in the officers right of self preservation. Are doctors and surgeons charged with murder when one of their compliant peaceful patients die due to a mis-diagnosis or mistake during surgery? WHY IN THE WORLD WOULD AN OFFICER BE CHARGED WITH MURDER FOR DOING THEIR JOB. Last I knew, their job is to serve and protect. I believe along with the rest of society it also includes protecting themselves from harm. They’re officers, NOT martyrs.

    • Holly Demmons

      Because our fabulous government said so. If we keep having our officers arrested for doing their jobs pretty soon we’ll have to call the hood crack dealer for protection because they’ll be no police.

  • JusticeNotServed

    and this little piggy said “oink oink” all the way to prison

  • Still22

    A man is dead. He looked and behaved in a way that made an experienced LEO fearful. Fearful. Consider that. Not nervous, not apprehensive – but filled with fear. Cops have a lot of fear these days. Fear prevents most people from making the best decisions. Without proper training to handle fearful situations the only tool they have is a firearm. The man should not be dead. The cop should not be a killer. Fear did this. Cops need to be going out in pairs, just like the old days. They need better training to manage unarmed and uncoopertive people. Throw a net on the guy, you don’t have to beat him or spray him or shoot him. Wait for backup instead of going all Rambo on him. Protect yourself by taking a defensive position with the rifle and wait it out. Even stoned people sober up with time. FFS people, what would she have done if she wasnt armed? They need to think about that.

  • pete480

    Nice! Another black lives matter supporter off the streets.

  • Patrick Wallace

    Black lives matter!

  • Patrick Wallace

    #Blacklives matter

  • Patrick Wallace

    BLM!

  • Patrick Wallace

    #BLM

  • Patrick Wallace

    Black not blue lives matter!

  • Patrick Wallace

    Boo blue
    Yeah black!

  • Patrick Wallace

    Down with blue up with black!

  • Patrick Wallace

    Police shouldn’t carry guns.

  • Patrick Wallace

    This web site is a bunch of Conservative Republican Trump supporters that are out of contact with reality!

  • Chadwick T

    Sadly she won’t go to prison, where she needs to be. She has no chance in prison, her years of wasted service cannot help in there. She will be Betty from Block C, protective custody. Her only friends will be chomo’s.

    • Chadwick T

      The least everyone can do is put money on her books for God’s sake!

  • doright

    Want early retirement then don’t shoot peoples holding books..Oh and not to mention having to move and hide the rest of ur life..

  • Nigel Bradley

    If you want to talk about the man who was shot in a negative fashion, how about the domestic assault charges and previous drug use of the police officer in question? You say the past actions of the police officer don’t matter? Good. Then don’t bring up the past actions of the man who was shot.