Police Shoot and Kill Man Throwing Rocks at Police Station


On December 28th 2015, police shot and killed Lonnie Nelson at the Phoenix Police Department. Nelson was seen throwing “bricks or rocks” at Phoenix Police Department property including a patrol car and the station itself. Nelson was shot when he threw a brick at the officer confronting him. The projectile missed hitting the officer directly, but bounced off a tree and grazed his hand. The officer shot and killed Nelson who was otherwise unarmed at the time of the shooting.

According to Nelson’s family members he had stolen a gun and bottle of liquor the day before the attack, but he had returned the weapon before leaving home Saturday morning, the day of the attack. He was apparently intoxicated and making suicidal statements before he left.

The incident ignited national concerns about the use of excessive force when apprehending suspects. With more and more social advocates focusing on the increasing numbers of police killings of often unarmed people, Nelson’s death promotes discussion of appropriate police conduct in tense situations.

In 2015 alone 1,125 people were killed by police in U.S. which is nearly 47 times the number of citizens killed by police in England and Wales. Additionally, it has been shown that people suffering from mental illness account for a large portion of these victims. The Washington Post found that 243 of the 965 people shot and killed by police in 2015 showed signs of mental illness.

People with mental illnesses have been shown to make up approximately 16% of prison populations.

Steps are being made to remedy the growing number of police shootings. Phoenix Police Commander, Michael Kurtem has announced the formation of a seven person “crisis intervention squad” at diverting pick-ups of mentally ill people away from first responders in the department. Instead the team with deal with mental health situations with a palliative approach, prioritizing treatment over incarceration.

The Phoenix Police department is also taking steps to train its patrol officers in crisis intervention.

Posted in Arizona, Arizona Laws, Law Enforcement, Mental Health Defenses | Tagged , , |

Breaking Down Your Arizona Probation Terms


If you have been sentenced to probation in Arizona, you may be confused by the fact your judge gave you a timeline of something between 18-24 months of probation. Probation terms in Arizona dictate that a judge can sentence an offender to time frame of probation instead of a specific number of months.

Review of Arizona Probation Law

Probation is the the release of an offender from detention, subject to a period of good behavior under supervision. It can also be served in lieu of prison time for minor or first-time offenses. When a judge sentences an offender to 18-24 months this means they are willing to review the terms of probation after 18 months. If the judge feels that an offender has been successfully rehabilitated they will grant a release from probation before the full 24 months is completed.

Can I File for Early Termination?

juvenile charges resulting in probationAn offender can file for early termination at any time after your probation requirements, besides amount of time, have been completed. Probation requirements can range from completing community service to attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. That being said, the motion will most likely be opposed by your probation officer and the prosecuting attorney for your case. Your request will be taken into consideration whether or not you violated any terms of your probation.

Most plea deals and probation terms will indicate when you can file for early termination. Consult with your criminal defense attorney who can be an asset in having your probation terminated early. A defense attorney can help get your PO on the ground and meet with the prosecutor in your case.

You are currently on probation and hope to file for early termination give us a call today and our team of experienced criminal defense attorneys will provide guidance in these matters. We have assisted many clients in having in post probation matters.

Posted in Arizona, Arizona Laws, Law Enforcement, Probation | Tagged , , |