Skip to comments.Father of Airman shot by Opelika police officer speaks out
Posted on 03/14/2014 10:13:08 PM PDT by Altariel
OPELIKA, AL (WTVM) -
News Leader 9's Elizabeth White spoke with the father of the 20-year-old Airman who was shot in the stomach March 6 by an Opelika police officer.
It was the first on-camera interview Billy Davidson has done since the incident.
He met with us in a parking lot just across the street from East Alabama Medical Center, where his son is still recovering with serious injuries to his stomach.
Billy tells us his son is and has always been a good kid who is dedicated to his Air Force career. He is well-loved by his friends, family and church in east Texas.
He says his son was unarmed and did nothing to provoke being shot by an Opelika police officer.
"The whole family is just sick about this. We all love Michael, east Texas loves Michael. It's a hard thing," Billy said while choking back tears. "We liked to lose him, according to the surgeons. He almost bled out."
Michael Davidson, an Airman first class, was driving on I-85 at 7 p.m. on Thursday, March 6 to North Carolina for his assignment.
His father says he got into a minor accident with another car and both drivers pulled over near Exit 62.
"I assume the police saw it and pulled, and Michael said he heard screaming or hollering and he saw the lights. He realized it was a police vehicle and he raised up his hand. He had his bill fold at the time he was turning around saying I am an Airmen headed to my...' and that is as far as he got. As he turned around he felt something hit him and he had been shot," Billy said.
"He kept asking 'Why did you shoot me?', and finally they came over and started checking on him and then he passed out," Billy added.
The bullet injured Michael's intestines and bowels, and he may live with a colostomy bag for the rest of his life.
His father says investigators waited 16 hours to tell the family about the incident.
Opelika Officer Phillip Hancock has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation by the ABI.
"The whole family is upset, everybody that knows Michael is upset. We don't understand how this could happen," Billy said.
Opelika police say no charges are pending against Michael Davidson.
Billy said Michael has never been in any major trouble or served time in jail. His father says there were no drugs, alcohol, or weapons in the car because they would end the Air Force career Michael took very seriously. Michael dreamed of entering the Air Force Academy, but his father worries that is no longer attainable because of his injuries.
Still, the family is thankful Michael is still alive. Now they want answers, but so far have felt ignored by all agencies involved.
"We came here not looking for an attorney, but looking for answers. We are a law and order family and we thought law and order would prevail, but now we are hearing they are looking for charges against Michael and stuff like that and we realize we need to protect our son," Billy said.
Billy says he wants to see the dash cam video of the shooting. We have filed a freedom of information request with the OPD in an effort to obtain a copy.
We are also waiting to hear back from the district attorney to see if charges are possible against the officer involved in the shooting.
Opelika police did not comment further, but did say a press conference may be held at a later date.
Active Duty ping.
If police officers continue to act this way eventually civilians will no longer trust them and start shooting first before the officer shoots. It’s not going to be pretty, but it’s the natural progression that is being driven by those who should know better, IMO.
This is sick.
I’m not trusting them very much right now as it is. They shoot first and ask questions later. Then there’s that a-clown in CT that can’t wait to kick your door down and take your guns away.
... big surprise ..
Keep in mind that as America descends into third world status the police become death squads.
it appears that citizens’ lives are in danger anytime police are on the scene. it really is getting that way. shooting homeless people sitting on the ground, shooting homeowners who think their home is being invaded by non-police criminals, shooting people involved in a traffic accident with hands up turning around...
they are going to pick people off one by one before tshtf.
Dogs and citizens are not safe anymore. It is a sad state of affairs.
Gunning down unarmed civilians is just one of the perks, like free donuts and coffee.
feat=felt, of course.
Current and former military personnel seem to be especially targeted, based on this and previous accounts.
They got home safe ping...
The police officer should be arrested and held without bond, on the charge of attempted murder, plus various related charges.
The police officer should immediately be fired, without pay, without benefits.
The police officers’ superiors should be placed on leave, pending investigation of their command failures.
The department police retirement fund should pay expenses and penalties. Make the F’ ers eat their own dog food or this will not stop without something that will have no winners.
Now, before anyone starts berating me for being critical of LEO's, know that I deal with LEO's on a regular basis: I'm a LEO trainer on a national level. Yes, I train LEO's all over the country. I've seen a lot of good ones... But there is a huge increase in the "shoot first, recognize threat second" crowd. These are the ones that are just plain scared witless. I deal with them after the officers are already assigned to the street, and have expressed concerns to departments in regard to some that should not be on the street at all. All I can do is inform the powers that be and go on to the next class and town. It is very disheartening at times. The only thing more dangerous than a coward with a gun is a coward with a gun and a badge.
I am all in favor for life or death penalty for cops shooting innocent people. Especially when it happens multiple times. Is that not equal protection under the law?
over paid union dipshits who should not have this type of job!
When all the dog shooting started it seemed to many, myself included, that this sort of thing was next. And, as it turned out, it was.
Thank you from this 29 year veteran city cop. I’m horrified by these videos. No question: those cops are whack. A more dangerous 3% than in the past.
I’ve seen the videos: they gots no brains! Shooting people, multiple rounds....from safe cover. Wallets and sticks are ‘guns’ in their pie-eyes. Flaw in training? Fewer washouts from training academies? What the hell is up with that??
Crappy vision or just crappy pants?
The cop felt threatened. It didn’t matter whether the threat was real or not. Is it our imagination that these types of incidents are happening with greater frequency?
Cops priorities are themselves and not the public.
It's the explanation that got Michael Dunn off in Jacksonville. It'll probably get this officer off as well.
Ego challenged, testosterone deficient scumbags with tin badges. WHEN are we going to be MUCH better at selecting who is to become a cop and then training them to KNOW that they SERVE and ANSWER to citizens? This bastard need to be charged with attempted, premeditated MURDER and HUNG!
Officer Hancock has been awarded his paid vacation. He will get his earned certificate of merit or even of heroism after a suitable interval of a couple of weeks. No charges against him are possible. He was obviously acting according to his training i.e. if you can imagine some possibility where the situation might suggest harm to your body or sensibilities, shoot the person in front of you.
Another example proving a truism I learned here:
There are few situations so bad they can’t be made worse by the addition of a cop.
Sad it has come to this.
Well what did you expect, there was no dog and something had to be shot.
Well, the important thing is that the valiant Officer Phillip Hancock made it home safely that night and received a paid vacation (known to government employees as paid administrative leave) as his reward.
The fact that the 20 year old Airman has had his life ruined is a small price to pay to insure that the good policeman didn’t FEEL threatened by shadows.
There is a huge gap between not giving a presumption of trustworthiness, and using deadly force. The police and the legal system are not trustworthy, IMO, but use of deadly force is only justified when one reasonably believes he is facing serious injury or death.
The number of times cops use deadly force without justification (and this is a case of that, based on what I've read) is vanishingly small compared with the number of police/serf interactions.
Who cares about some punk airman?
The only thing that matters is Police Officer Safety!
Shoot first, ask questions later!
The best thing you can do right now is avoid the cops at all cost. I agree that as things spiral downward and they will the cops are going to get more and more jumpy and aggressive.
A very large gap, that is true. However, the trend could very well bring the situation to extremes.
The Chief made reference to “packets and a hand rolled cigarette” and inferred that it was spice that was found in the car. They shouldn’t have shot him but it won’t help the kid’s case if he was doing something illegal.
Police are authorized to use deadly force first, but our soldiers are not!
Given the young man’s goals in life, I would say it’s far more likely that the synthetic drugs were planted.
A “drop drug” instead of a “drop gun”, so to speak.
(”We need something to take the attention off the fact that we nearly murdered this young man—quick! put this inside.)
That’s what I’m wondering...if the stuff was planted.
They’re deliberately selecting officers with lower IQs.
People with higher IQs might question the legality or constitutionality of illegal orders or activities