Police officer in fatal shooting of Marine vet ID'd, was sued in 2008 racism and brutality case

Democracy Now has a big update in the homicide of 68-year-old Kenneth Chamberlain, a black Marine vet shot dead at his home by police in White Plains, New York, last November after he accidentally set off his wearable medical alert device. A previous BB post on the story is here. The victim's son and other advocates have been pressuring authorities to release the name of the officer involved:

Documented in audio recordings, the White Plains police reportedly used a racial slur, burst through Chamberlain’s door, tasered him, then shot him dead. "The last time I actually really saw my father, other than the funeral, was at the hospital, with his eyes wide open, his tongue hanging out his mouth, and two bullet holes in his chest," said Kenneth Chamberlain, Jr. "And I’m staring at my father, wondering, 'What happened?'"

The alleged shooter, Officer Anthony Carelli, is due in court later this month in an unrelated 2008 police brutality case. He is accused of being the most brutal of a group of officers who allegedly beat two arrestees of Jordanian descent and called them "rag heads."

Video, audio, and transcript here.


  1. There has to be a better way to protect the people than giving thugs a gun and a uniform. There just has to be.

    1. Well, the intent was that everyone would get a gun, and in fact, every free white adult male was REQUIRED to own a gun once upon a time (and Kennesaw, GA requires every household to own a gun, although to avoid constitutionality issues, the requirement can literally be avoided by not wanting to own a gun).

  2. Please, everyone, give the officers in the case the benefit of the doubt. Being a police officer is a very difficult and dangerous job. They have to balance injury and safety to themselves and their team against the rights of others, such as using their diaphragm to breathe. We need the rule of law enforced so we don’t devolve into anarchy where any person is doing what ever they want.

    But most importantly keep in mind it was dark and the police were responding to a medical emergency. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve personally responded to medical emergencies   along with a team of police officers; I assure you it is standard operating procedure to have guns drawn and pointed at the injured party as the first line of defense against further injury to the party. 

    But most importantly this is a simple case of human error. Just consider that a man after accidentally activating his life alert and continues to sleep in his bed unaware of the issue looks exactly like a crack head raping the President so they have a duty to intervene with force. And a man of adequate health dying while flopping around in his bed of a heart attack induced by tasing happens to look exactly like someone coming at you with a knife, a gun, a nuclear bomb, and a pile of Occupy protestors. 

    It’s just a very normal but very tragic consequence of the order our society demands. Calm down people. 

    1. You fool! You’ve used the encoder ring the wrong way! This is only half encrypted!

    2. Thats exacly the issue. The so called “standard operating procedures” should not be so standard.

    3.  In the officers’ defense, they did cure his heart condition.  He will never have another heart attack, stroke, or palpitation. 100% guaranteed.  His son should be thanking them.

    4. With all the evidence. . . the fact that they tased him FIRST and then LIED and said he “had a knife” . . . . I would have to say that you are an idi0t, or a cop. . . . same thing.

    5. You guys should see my April fool’s jokes when I get around to putting enough effort into them. 

    6. Did you not watch the report? These cops are scum. There are cops arent but there is an obnoxious amount that are.

    7. Stop saying that law enforcement officers deserve our respect for putting their lives on the line every day. They are at no more risk than a groundskeeper, maintenance worker, salesperson, farmer, construction worker, trucker, auto repair worker, or factory supervisor. In fact, their line of work is safer than most of those listed, and not much more dangerous than most others.

      Stats: http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cfoi.t03.htm

      Yes, your post was golden sarcasm. And I respect that. This is mostly breadcrumbs for casual readers.

    8. I see what you did there, but I can hardly see the humor in it just because  I’m so sick of apologists  telling us what a hard job police officers have.  They knew what the job entailed when they took it. They DO NOT deserve the benefit of the doubt.   What they need to do is stop behaving like they are above or outside of the law.     I would prefer anarchy to what we have now. 

  3. Growing up, most of us learned that a typical way to deal with problems is to remove the source of conflict. If a couple kids are fighting over a toy, mom takes the toy away. If a kid starts a fight in school, the kid gets suspended. If a person is caught drinking and driving, they lose their privilege to drive.

    So I propose that we take guns away from the police until they convince us all they’re mature enough to use them properly.

    This goes for tasers, too.

  4. Police don’t protect and serve. They abuse and intimidate.

    Police forces aren’t for the public protection but for the govnt. To manain the status quo.

  5. How on earth was this man still wearing a badge and carrying weapons after he had already been found to have committed a hate crime while on duty?  Why is it the police get to assault people and face no consequences?

    1. Exactly.  He should be in jail, with the D.A. dragging his name through the mud as he builds up a case.

    2. I’ll tell you why. . . . . the glad-handling DA in Westchester County, who is a criminal herself, just as her predecessor was, refused to go after this cop simply because they are so much better than everyone else and above the law, at least in Westchester County they are. The cops in Westchester can do just about whatever they want with no repercussions. Mark my words, there will be NO indictment in this case, because the DA’s office will steer the Grand Jury into the decision they want.

    3. Police Unions unlike Labor Unions are good at protecting shitty people from getting any comeuppance.  

      Police unions are even safe from Scott Walker’s administration.

    4. Cops rack up quite a number of these things. They don’t have much chance of getting fired unless it makes the front page of the paper. And then they just move to another PD.

  6. I’m surprised this didn’t get as much media traction as Trayvon Martin.  The alleged behaviour of the killer here is even more blatant, even if we were to pretend race was no issue:

    1) The victim was an elderly man, not a teenager defending himself.
    2) There seem to be no questions about the victim’s character to aid those seeking to cloud the issue.
    3) The victim was shot in his own home.
    4) The victim was tasered ~before he was shot, i.e., he was likely incapacitated. [EDIT: I misremembered: apparently he was not incapacitated, and had a knife.]
    5) The killer had no reason to believe, upon entering the home, that the victim would be a threat, and had every reason to believe otherwise.
    6) Finally, and most important, the killer was a police officer, acting in the line of duty.

    Maybe the murk and obscurantism of crypto-racists is what’s driving the outcry over the Trayvon Martin case, rather than the facts of the case itself.  Because from here it seems the facts of the Kenneth Chamberlain killing are even ~more compelling.

    1. Agreed.  However, unfortunately, #6 is the likely reason why this has gained so little traction.  For some reason, whether it’s media bias, cultural bias, or just human response to ‘authority’, we’ve inexplicably set the bar lower for police and the use of force – not higher, as it should be.  Especially in the case of deadly or ‘less-than-deadly’ force.

      We should take their guns/tasers/batons/beanbag guns away until they prove they understand the circumstances where their use is justified.

      1. The asinine companies who make these devices, tasers, pepper spray, and all that other garbage, are giving police the means to not do their jobs and act the way they do today. Ever watch COPS? In almost every instance, the first thing these grown-up babies do is pull out their taser and threaten to use it. Take away these barbaric devices and the cops will have no choice but to do their jobs the way they did them back when these devices weren’t available.

        1.  I completely agree Anthony. These less than lethal weapons encourage police brutality and abuse. Now that they have a non-lethal way of incapacitating someone, police are much more likely to react with violence instead of reason. There is ample evidence that all of these less than lethal weapons are being abused by the police every day.

    2. Cases like this happen hundreds of times a year, all over the US.  The Martin case is a total aberration in terms of the attention it’s gotten.  

        1. There was a foofaraw about a year ago in California when a cop was involved in a fatal high speed chase. The police are supposed to report certain types of incidents to some central oversight organization and apparently compliance is in single-digit percentages. Even where there are rules, there’s no mechanism for enforcing them. Law enforcement agents really don’t want to arrest other law enforcement agents.

    3.  #6 makes it less likely for it to cause outrage.  The majority in the US are inclined to trust cops and not second guess their judgment.  If Trayvon Martin’s shooter had been a cop who made the claims Zimmerman made, I suspect there would have been a lot fewer people who would have had their bullshit detectors tripped.  (Sadly, because for all of our public officials from politicians all the way down to beat cops the default stance should be skepticism until they prove themselves, not trust until they do something to prove themselves untrustworthy.  Oh well.)

  7. I thought it was incredible how well Kenneth Jr. held it together throughout this segment–especially when describing his father in the hospital. I almost couldn’t by that point.

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