Killer cop's wrist-slap complete

Steven Greenhut: It’s shocking that Johannes Mehserle, who shot to death the unarmed Oscar Grant while Grant was lying on his face in a BART station in Oakland, goes free after serving only one year of a modest two-year sentence. And consider that this is the longest any California cop has ever  spent in jail for any on-duty shooting. Police can basically kill people with impunity. Any absurd explanation or excuse will do. Obviously, it’s true that killers get wrist-slaps in California. In the rare instances where someone such as Mehserle is prosecuted — and that’s very rare, given that DAs are part of the law-enforcement brotherhood that protects its own — the entire system gives these folks special protections. What if it was your son who was yanked off a train, pushed to the ground and then shot to death in the back? How would you feel? Would you think the killer cop should be let go? Would you buy the lame excuse that he thought the gun was a taser? I doubt it.

Consider also that police union groups paid for Mehserle’s defense. And the unions and police organizations have tried to turn Mehserle into some kind of victim and even a hero. It’s disgusting. Had Grant “accidentally” shot to death Mehserle in almost identical circumstances, what would have happened to him? You know the answer. He would have a life sentence and he would be a cop-killing pariah.


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