Quick Response

2 min read

Between July 28th and August 4th - a period of 8 days - 15 mass shootings have occurred in the United States.

In at least two of the events, fast police responses have been credited with saving lives. In the mass shooting that occurred at the Gilroy Garlic Festival, where 2 children were among the people killed, a "heavy police presence" was credited with saving lives.

Gilroy pull quote

The chief credited a heavy police presence for saving lives as chaos descended on the decades-old festival in Gilroy, a city about 30 miles south of San Jose. “We had many, many officers in the park at the time this occurred … which accounts for a very, very quick response time,” Smithee said.

In the mass shooting at Dayton, Ohio, where at least 9 people are currently reported killed, the mayor said that police "neutralized" the person with the gun in less than a minute.

Dayton pull quote

In a press conference, she said the police neutralized the shooter in less than one minute. “If Dayton Police had not gotten to the shooter in less than a minute ... hundreds of people could be dead today,” Whaley said as she praised law enforcement for their quick response. The shooter had a .223-caliber gun with high-capacity magazine and was wearing body armor, she said.

The fact that professional law enforcement saved lives is a very, very good thing - my observations in no way diminish their contribution or their service. But putting the burden on law enforcement is completely misplaced. In Dayton, law enforcement was there in under a minute - and nine people are dead, and 26 are wounded.

In Gilroy, a heavy law enforcement presence stopped the killing at three people, with 12 additional people injured.

Our measure of success can't be smaller body counts. Our measure of safety can't be an increased armed police presence everywhere.