Skip to comments.Erik Scott, USMA Class of 1994, Shot at Costco
Posted on 09/27/2010 9:40:32 AM PDT by pgyanke
Erik Scott's Death - A Father's Statement 8/30/2010
Erik's family would like to keep our class updated on what is occurring in the case of Erik's death.
Below is a statement from Erik's father, William Scott.
Please support the Scott Family by following: http://erikbscott.com Twitter: @IMOErikBscott Facebook: In Memory of Erik Scott Twitter: @IMOErikBScott YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/InMemoryofErikScott
Erik Scott's Death
Erik B. Scott, a 1994 U.S. Military Academy at West Point graduate, was shot and killed by three Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (Metro) officers in front of the Summerlin Costco store on 10 July 2010. The shooting is still under investigation, but here are the basic facts, based on numerous eyewitness reports:
Erik was carrying a legally registered concealed firearm, while he and his girlfriend were shopping at Costco. He also had a concealed carry permit in his wallet, issued by the same Metro department that killed him.
When Erik squatted on the floor to verify that three metal water bottles would fit into a soft-sided, zip-up cooler, a Costco employee saw the weapon. Erik's shirt had lifted up, revealing an inside-the-belt holstered pistol tucked into the back of his jeans. A civil interchange ensued, and the employee informed Erik of Costco's policy that guns were not allowed inside company stores -- although there are no signs to that effect posted outside or inside the facility. Erik calmly responded that his gun was legal and that he had a concealed carry weapon (CCW) permit on his person. Like many other Boston Scientific pacemaker sales reps, Erik carried a concealed weapon for personal protection, because reps are required to enter dangerous areas of the city at all hours of the day and night to serve patients fitted with cardiac pacemakers and defibrillators. Contrary to wildly erroneous news reports, we don't believe Erik had a second gun on his person.
The Costco employee apparently reported to the store's manager that Erik was carrying a gun. The manager, in turn, informed a young, plainclothes security person, who subsequently placed a 911 call to the police. The contents of that 911 call have not been released, but Northwest Metro cops rushed to the store in overwhelming force. Perhaps as many as 15 police cruisers, a helicopter, an incident-command team and an ambulance were dispatched.
Costco managers announced via the PA system that the store was being evacuated. Unaware that the evacuation had anything to do with him, Erik and his girlfriend walked out with the crowd, passing three Metro officers waiting at the entrance. The Costco undercover security guard pointed to Erik, and the cops started yelling at Erik to stop and turn around.
Erik turned to find three officers facing him, guns drawn, and all three shouting different commands: "Get on the ground!" "Drop your weapon!" and "Keep your hands up!" Erik held his hands up, spoke calmly, told them he DID have a concealed firearm and a legal CCW and was an ex-Army officer. His girlfriend was screaming about Erik being a West Point grad, former Army officer, etc. Erik leaned to his left, hands still up, to expose the pistol inside his belt, and repeated, "I am disarming; I am disarming..." Witnesses say he started to lower his right hand, palm OUT, as if intending to remove holster and gun together but never got the hand below his shoulder, when one of the cops (William Mosher, who had committed a fatal shooting in 2006) shot Erik in the chest with a .45-caliber weapon. Erik dropped to his knees, clearly in shock, his face a picture of disbelief. He was shot a second time and collapsed. The rest is ugly. The three officers unloaded again, firing a total of seven hollow-point rounds. At least five, possibly six, hit Erik in the back, after he was on the ground and dying.
The cops roughly handcuffed Erik's hands behind his back, and, in the words of an eyewitness, "tossed him onto a gurney [as if he were] a sack of potatoes."
Costco had numerous security cameras inside the store and at least four trained on the entrance portico, where the shooting took place. Metro officers immediately seized the surveillance-camera video data (computer hard disks), including backup drives. Within hours, Metro leaked "news" that the video may be "unusable," and that the hard drives had been sent to a forensics lab in Los Angeles. More than six weeks later, only Metro personnel have seen the video. Sheriff Douglas Gillespie, the Metro chief, continues to say that "there's probably no usable video" of events inside the store or of Erik's fatal shooting. He also has refused to release the 911 audio tape, even though Metro normally releases those 911 call tapes to the media within days.
There's been considerable media coverage of Erik's shooting, and many of the news reports are available on Las Vegas TV station and Las Vegas Review Journal newspaper websites. Erik's family and friends have done numerous interviews, as we search for the truth about Erik's slaying. Many people think one of our more-effective interviews was on Channel 8/KLAS TV with George Knapp of the "I-Team." (http://www.8newsnow.com/global/story.asp?s=12809131)
A Clark County Coroner's Inquest Hearing is scheduled for 22-23 September in Las Vegas. Considered to be unique in the U.S., this particular inquest process is heavily biased in favor of law enforcement personnel. A Las Vegas reporter referred to it as "police investigating police and reporting to police." In 34 years of inquests into more than 190 officer-involved shootings, only one officer has been found at fault and he was never prosecuted.
Interested parties can follow developments in this case, as well as an "E-Team" weblog featuring commentary and insights, at: http://www.erikbscott.com
William B. Scott Erik's Father
*Note that this information was not created by USMA Class of 1994. All information was provided by the Scott Family in order to keep Erik's friends and classmates informed.*
>Even if everything you say is correct, it doesnt matter what he was trying to do.
>All that matters is how his actions would have been interpreted by a reasonable officer taking into account their training and experience.
>*Training and experience tells you to fire the moment that someone goes for a gun.*
Wow. According to that sort of a mentality it is absolutely moral and correct for the police to issue orders to disarm [or even present their weapon] and then execute them for complying! What do you suppose the majority of people would do if presented with multiple firearms leveled at them demanding that they surrender their weapon via a command to “Drop it!”?
Just shoot everyone who would comply because “anyone stupid enough to touch a weapon when the police are geared-to-go deserves to get shot”?
>>thank you for the info. was he legally taking the medicine?
>Three of his doctors testified at the inquest, so he did have prescriptions. However, a prescription can’t be refilled until it is almost expired. In Florida, I know morphine is prescribed short term, like five days. So to account for the levels in Scott’s blood, he either overdosed the prescriptions he had, or he was doctor shopping to get multiple prescriptions or obtaining his drugs from an illegal source.
OR his body didn’t adequately breakdown the morphine like the average person. I read somewhere, I believe on his father’s blog, that a doctor had recently talked to Erik about the possibility that the morphine wasn’t as effective as it should have been because of a lack of a certain enzyme that helped process it. [I don’t have the ref right now... If I stumble upon it and remember this post I’ll pop a link.]
>Read this article for a more complete account of Scott and his drug taking. The article states a report was filed with the state claiming Scott received multiple prescriptions from multiple doctors, a felony in Nevada.
It may be a felony in NV, but if he was doing anything with the VA and their VA is anything like my local one, then it’d be absolutely normal to have multiple doctors as the doctors are ‘assigned’ on specialty; that is to say, you’d see a different doctor for allergies than you would for psychological problems than you would for physical therapy than you would for a general check-up... and even then they might referral out to civilian specialists.
Here’s the link to his dad’s blog you were referencing earlier where the notion that Erik’s body couldn’t metabolize hydrocodone is floated. It’s about mid-way down.
There’s no testimony from VA doctors, or that Erik was being treated at the VA. There is testimony, however, that Erik contacted multiple physicians seeking prescriptions for morphene. His father is the source of rumors about steriod use, which evidence has either not been introduced at the inquest, or has not been reported.
Thanks for the link. It doesn’t show that Scott was seeking multiple prescriptions from multiple doctors. It merely states that the accusation had been made. The doctor currently treating him didn’t seem to see any painkillers he wasn’t supposed to have in the report. However, it does look like Scott was more interested in continuing his painkillers than getting treatment for possible dependency.
The guy was pretty athletic in spite of his injuries. He wasn’t some dude just getting high...
But probably not at the high levels in his blood, and I doubt any doctor prescribed him Xanax who also knew he was on very high levels of morphine.
The guy was pretty athletic in spite of his injuries.
His last doctor said Scott had trouble staying upright and appeared groggy, which would coincide with the testimony of Scott's appearance at Costco. The same doctor also drafted a letter cutting him off as a patient, though it was never sent. Scott also suggested doctors make up fake reasons to prescribe him painkillers according to testimony.
My best friend growing up is now a state trooper. He was a terrible driver in high school who totaled two cars by the time he was 18. He never shot guns (like we did), except a couple of times a year when we would go pheasant hunting.
I find it extremely ironic that he now has the authority to pull people over and cite them for dangerous driving.
He had never fired a handgun before testing for the force. While he hasn’t failed yet, he admits that the only time he shoots is once a year when he has to qualify with his weapon. He has to get a 240 out of 300 points to pass (80 percent); he mentioned that his highest score was 244. He’s nervous to take the test, because he’s always so close to the cut off.
I bet most people can score 240/300 without practice. As you mentioned, most CCW holders would have much higher scores.
>Heres the link to his dads blog you were referencing earlier where the notion that Eriks body couldnt metabolize hydrocodone is floated. Its about mid-way down.
>Theres no testimony from VA doctors, or that Erik was being treated at the VA. There is testimony, however, that Erik contacted multiple physicians seeking prescriptions for morphene.
That’s interesting, though somewhat inconclusive... by all local accounts I’ve heard the system for dealing with police misconduct in LV is seriously broken.
>His father is the source of rumors about steriod use, which evidence has either not been introduced at the inquest, or has not been reported.
Steroids are an interesting subject; when people use the term they usually think of the anabolic steroids used in “bulking up” but there are other steroids such as ones to help premature babies breathe,
So you’re making a hearsay accusation as if it is fact. Uh huh, right in character for these threads.
I’m puzzled as to the relvance of the ‘roids, myself, and only mentioned it because the father has raised the issue, if only to preempt it.
Okay. Kind of like a encounter with a game warden.
He also described Scott as a high level athlete, and that when he last saw him, he was groggy but not out of control. He also had changed his mind about dropping him as a patient.
thanks for the link.
The testimony clip in the article is contradictory - that the doctor was giving prescriptions without monitoring, and that the doctor had nothing to do with Scott. It would be interesting to know how Scott met his girlfriend...did he meet her & use her, or did he meet her at the doctor’s office?
All of which is irrelevant to the questions, “Did the police act responsibly in shooting Scott 7 times? Did they feel threatened based on the facts or what they expected (I obviously believe #2)? Did they shoot him on the ground? And were there better ways to handle the situation?”
There is little doubt that the police reacted to what they had been led to believe they would be facing with 'an armed crazy'. But to crucify the police for this is over the top agenda mongering.
BTW, I used to have a 1991 and it had a short cocked hammer position which kept the hammer off of the firing pin but would not everytime fire if the trigger was pulled and the hammer dropped from the short cocked position. A newer hammer spring would have made it fire reliably from the short cocked position and the trigger wouldn't need heavy finger pressure.
That 1991 should read 1911, an armory build which had been nickeled, with Pachmyer wrap-around finger position grip.
The doctor was illegally writing prescriptions on demand to Scott without actually seeing him as a patient as a law abiding doctor would, therefore the article isn't being contradictory.
All of which is irrelevant to the questions, Did the police act responsibly in shooting Scott 7 times? Did they feel threatened based on the facts or what they expected (I obviously believe #2)? Did they shoot him on the ground? And were there better ways to handle the situation?
Relevancy should be determined by the laws of Nevada, not your lawyerly questions. Scott's illegal drug use should be considered along with the testimony about Scott's behavior. Scott was carrying his weapon illegally under the influence of drugs. He held up his hand to a Costco employee's head as if it was a gun. He told another employee he was a Green Beret when he never was. Another employee was told by Scott that he was "messed up". Scott immediately went for his gun when he was first contacted by the police. He didn't follow any commands. Two witnesses yesterday said when Mosher was giving commands, Scott was looking back and forth as if he was looking for a way out. From the information Mosher received from his dispatcher, he believed Scott was armed, under the influence of drugs, and threatening. Scott disobeyed any training he ever received as a soldier or as a CCW holder on how to disarm.
The only way the cops could have handled the situation better was with hindsight. The best outcome would have been if Scott was in a detox center or a hospital where he belonged.
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