The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department needs to take action following an agency record 12 fatal officer-involved shootings so far this year, former Clark County Sheriff Bill Young said yesterday, reports the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “Metro should take it upon itself to take a critical look inside and make some changes and improve some training and some tactics and, quite frankly, change its culture a little bit,” Young told local public radio station KNPR-FM. “I know (Sheriff Doug Gillespie) is an individual who will do the right thing.”
Young’s comments came a few days after the fatal shooting of Stanley Gibson, 43, a disabled war veteran who was unarmed in his car and disoriented when police arrived to investigate a possible burglary. The former sheriff, now head of security for Station Casinos Inc., said that shooting exposed problems that need fixing, including when officers deploy AR-15 rifles, the weapon used against Gibson. “It was totally inappropriate, absolutely wrong for an officer to have a long gun at that close a distance aimed at an individual who was apparently mentally distraught in a car and was unarmed,” Young said. Gibson’s death and a recent Review-Journal series on the rising number of shootings by Las Vegas police prompted the ACLU and NAACP this week to call for the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the department’s use of deadly force. Gillespie said he would support a federal probe.