Dylann Roof: NC Judge Defends Cops’ ‘Burger King’ Treat, Explains Why It May Have Been A Good Idea
Dylann Roof is making headlines yet again. However, this time it’s the Shelby Police Department that is being scrutinized. By now, everyone has probably read reports about the 21-year-old Charleston shooter being treated to a Burger King meal after being arrested. As previously reported on Inquisitr, Roof complained of hunger following his arrest so the officers bought him a meal from Burger King.
Although many are outraged by the officers’ alleged “preferential” treatment toward a vile killer, one retired Cumberland County, NC judge is speaking out in support of the Shelby police officers’ decision. In fact, the judge has even cited a number of reasons why their actions may prove to be beneficial.
— Daily Mail US (@DailyMail) June 23, 2015
According to the International Journal Review, a former Superior Court judge – whose identity has been concealed – insists the officers may have bought Roof the meal for a number of reasons. However, it probably has nothing to do with “preferential” treatment. During a discussion with the publication, the judge began with a brief outline of the officers’ obligations to suspects in custody.
“Police are obligated to take care of physical needs, provide water, food, medical attention, etc. If you are in the custody of the government, the government has placed you under arrest, placed you in custody, they are now the government’s responsibility. Which is why we feed and take medical care of our prisoners. The number one job of professional law enforcement is to maximize the law enforcement process. The first objective of law enforcement after they arrest a suspect is to get a statement from the suspect.
Officers are obligated by law to ensure prisoners’ basic needs are met, but the meal could have also been a bargaining tactic. In some cases, officers must go the extra mile to get a written statement from a suspect. The judge also explained why it is often difficult to receive a detailed statement from suspects.
He added, “And it is never in a defendant’s best interest to make a statement. If you treat anyone, no matter how brutal a criminal they are, halfway decently, like getting someone a soda if they’re thirsty or food if they’re hungry, talk to them like a person, garner some good will, there is a greater likelihood an officer can get a statement and THAT statement will be used against the suspect in the court of law.”
Regardless of the outrage over the officers’ decision, these types of gestures are actually the first steps toward building a substantial case against a suspect because it all begins with the initial statement. “We all want police officers to share the outrage we feel after such a heinous crime. But, the number one job of an officer after making the initial arrest is to build the best case they can that will ensure justice. If South Carolina seeks the death penalty, whatever is in the initial statement taken after the arrest will be of utmost importance for a jury to determine an outcome.”
The Shelby Police Department has been contacted about the Burger King debacle, but the arresting officers have not responded.
[Photo by Charleston County Sheriff’s Office via Getty Images]