A horrific stand-off took place recently at a Walmart in suburban Oklahoma City when a man randomly grabbed a 2-year-old out of her grocery cart and held her hostage. The man, Sammie Wallace, snatched the blonde toddler right out from her mother's care and then held a blade to her and threatened to kill her unless certain demands were made -- police are still trying to figure out exactly what the mentally disturbed man, who ranted about President Bush, wanted. After police arrived, the man was shot point-blank in the head after police began to fear he would kill the child. Police have now released video surveillance footage of the horrific drama to show that the shooting was justified.
In the video, the man is seen casually strolling down the store's aisle -- bystanders not paying him any attention. But then he suddenly approaches a cart and picks up a little girl. The shocked mother begins to scream for her baby.
Several customers surround the man and dial 911. One blocks him with his shopping cart. The man then hands a cellphone to the child's mother and tells her to call a Dallas police officer. (Details on why are sketchy.)
The store was then evacuated and video shows an officer sitting with the man, who still holds the child. Remarkably, the girl seems calm throughout the entire ordeal!
After half an hour, the man begins counting down and moves the knife from the girl's stomach to her throat. The officer at this point looks around casually and then approaches as if he's merely going to talk to the man.
Instead, he shoots him in the head.
Police chief Brandon Clabes said: "I mean, we waited until the last second to use deadly force."
The shooting seems entirely justified. That man could have sliced the knife across the little girl's throat at any second.
But I can't help feeling some compassion for the man too, whom police say was obviously mentally ill, claiming President Bush was spying on him, and talking about the "Illuminati." They also found religious ramblings in notebooks at his home.
I'm sure the police officer didn't enjoy taking a man's life. I'm sure no one wanted the little girl to see a man killed right in front of her eyes. And I'm sure the police didn't want to risk that in the last second, the man could have killed the girl as he sensed the cop approaching.
But the cop did what he had to do.
Do you think there was any other way this could have been handled?
Image via KFOR-TV