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As images of all-too-familiar rioting and looting in the wake of deadly encounters between police and black males dominate the news cycle, and Americans wonder why this is happening – again.

Although the details differ, the storyline is the same – a police officer stops a black male for a legitimate reason, an altercation – verbal or otherwise – ensues, and shots are fired.

It does not matter if the officer is a white female, as in the case in a recent shooting in Tulsa, Oklahoma or a black male officer in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Race baiters and grievance hustlers crawl out from under the rocks to stoke the fires – literally, and cities like Ferguson, Baton Rouge and Baltimore explode, leaving dead bodies, looted stores and burned-out buildings to the residents as the agitators move on.

As authorities pour over video evidence from police cruiser dashcams and helicopter cameras to determine whether charges should be filed – which they were in the Tulsa case late Thursday afternoon – questions are asked about police procedures that lead to the confrontations in the first place.

However, the cases usually have one thing in common – a conscious decision by the suspect to disobey a lawful order to keep his hands visible and stop moving.

It defies logic that any rational person would disregard, let alone disobey that reasonable order, yet it happens and almost always with disastrous results on both sides.

For anyone wondering why, reliving the last moments of Deputy Sheriff Kyle Dinkheller’s life may explain.

The excruciating scene unfolds in 3-minutes and 27-seconds after the 23-year-old Laurens County, Georgia officer pulled Andrew Brannan over on a simple traffic stop for speeding.

It was captured on a video recorder years before the era of dashcam-outfitted police cruisers and is still used in police training.

Dinkheller, armed only with his semi-automatic police-issued weapon, repeatedly ordered Brannan to stand still.

Instead, Brannan returned to his truck, reached in, pulled out an M1-Carbine and fired at the officer, eventually hitting him with a fatal shot to the eye.


Brannan was convicted of premeditated murder, spent 15 years on death row and was executed.

Two wasted lives.

Because one person made the choice to disregard a reasonable order.

Police are not psychic. They have no idea if a suspect is reaching for their car registration in the console or a loaded weapon.

What they do know is that their life depends on the choice the suspect is making at that very moment.

Why make an officer take that bet?

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