Wednesday, December 5, 2007
Leonard Chambers by AMG
From "Physique Pictorial" for Summer, 1956 --
WAS THE KILLING OF LEONARD CHAMBERS BY TWO OFF-DUTY POLICEMEN "JUSTIFIABLE HOMICIDE"? Acting in the employment of a private bail bondsman, two Southern California policemen forced Leonard Chambers to get in their private car for allegedly failing to appear on some traffic charges. They testified that Leonard pulled a gun on them even though they had previously searched him and had him handcuffed. In desparate (sic) "self-defense" they shot him twice in the back of the head. Leonard of course didn't live to tell his side of the story. The coroner's jurors dutifully declared this murder "justifiable homicide".
The next day after Leonard's killing, another young man was pursued by Southland police officers who shot him in the back while spread-eagling him over the hood of his car -- but this young man did live to tell his story and have it corroborated by a number of witnesses. Ensuing investigation brought out that the police actually planted marihuana in the car to justify their ignoble deed. The policeman was suspended for 90 days, while the victim instead of being compensated was forced to pay the city $45 by one of Los Angeles' most puerile-minded judges who seems to take pride in ignorant decisions.
The city of London handles its law enforcement problem quite effectively without its officers carying guns, and consequently "accidental" shootings cannot occur. Instead of respect, admiration, and confidence, many American police departments seem more intent on establishing fear in their public relations. Do you believe killing is ever justified except to save another life? Ask your police chief what he thinks.
(Thanks to D in SF for the studio scans!)