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No Criminal Charges for Police Officer Who Fatally Shot Good Samaritan in Colorado

Was the killing of Johnny Hurley just a tragic misunderstanding—or another symbol of policing run amok?

Last June, a Colorado man named Johnny Hurley witnessed a deranged gunman shoot and kill a police officer. When Hurley—a concealed carry permit holder—pulled his own handgun and fired at the shooter, another police officer arriving on the scene mistook Hurley for the original gunman, shooting and killing him without warning. Last week, it was announced that the officer who killed Hurley will not face charges.

Was Hurley’s shooting just a tragic case of mistaken identity at an active-shooter crime scene, or does it join other recent high-profile cases in raising questions about police protocols and accountability?

Days before a planned “Justice for Johnny” rally organized by Hurley’s friends and supporters, Rob Nelson put this question to Roundtable channel partner, Matt Savoy, co-founder of the Free Thought Project and author of a recent story about the Hurley incident.

Among the issues that need to be addressed, says Savoy, is transparency. “There has been zero transparency since the beginning [by the police department],” he says. “It took them thirty-six hours to even acknowledge that a police officer actually shot Hurley. And then they held that video for several weeks. And when they did release any video of the incident, they only released a [partial] video of [the original] killing of the officer.” 

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