With a name like “Laquan,” it’s as if his mother wanted him to become a criminal.
That aside, Laquan was breaking into cars, and when he was surrounded by police, instead of surrendering to them, he continued to walk around with a knife in his hand, he punctured a police car tire with his knife, and he was looking for a way to escape.
Now, the current rule is that the police are only allowed to use deadly force if a person poses an immediate danger to civilians or the cops. This is a change from the traditional centuries-old rule that law enforcement could shoot at someone who committed a felony and who refused to surrender to the police.
The police officer who shot Laquan violated the current rule, but I’m not sure the current rule is really such a good idea. It encourages criminals to disobey the police, and the police are forced to physically subdue the perpetrator which puts the police at risk, and in the long run I think that the result has been that the police go overboard with physically subduing people and do so unnecessarily. In the past, the police would more civilly give suspects the right to surrender peacefully, knowing that they could shoot them if they refused to cooperate or tried to run away.
In any event, Laquan could have easily avoided getting shot by the police if he had simply surrendered after he got caught. Even better, he shouldn’t have been breaking into cars in the first place.