The Mayerthorpe Tragedy- was it handled as well as it could have been?


Zan
#1
Families lament news of possible appeal in Mountie killing case


You know, I have to admit I had not really followed the details of this case that closely beyond the fact that there had been a horrible tragedy and loss of life.

The Fifth Estate ran documentary and interview with Shawn Hennessey and his wife a few nights ago, and I came away from that deeply disturbed about how this case was dealt with.

After seeing that program, and seeing and hearing the accused tell his side of the story, I can't help but feel that this is a situation that got out of control with no malice or forethought on the part of the two accused men... perhaps some stupidity and lack of forsight, but I'm not sure what any one of us would have done in their shoes... there was certainly opportunity for them to call the cops and try to put a stop to this before it happened... but ... and imo, this is a very large BUT: hindsight is 20/20.

If you haven't seen the episode of the Fifth Estate I'm referring to, you can catch it here.

I'd like to hear from you if you've watched it - if you had an opinion about this case prior to seeing this interview has it changed? Do you think they should be sentenced with 15 and 12 years respectively?






 
Colpy
#2
Quote: Originally Posted by ZanView Post

Families lament news of possible appeal in Mountie killing case
You know, I have to admit I had not really followed the details of this case that closely beyond the fact that there had been a horrible tragedy and loss of life.
The Fifth Estate ran documentary and interview with Shawn Hennessey and his wife a few nights ago, and I came away from that deeply disturbed about how this case was dealt with.
After seeing that program, and seeing and hearing the accused tell his side of the story, I can't help but feel that this is a situation that got out of control with no malice or forethought on the part of the two accused men... perhaps some stupidity and lack of forsight, but I'm not sure what any one of us would have done in their shoes... there was certainly opportunity for them to call the cops and try to put a stop to this before it happened... but ... and imo, this is a very large BUT: hindsight is 20/20.
If you haven't seen the episode of the Fifth Estate I'm referring to, you can catch it here.

Quote has been trimmed, See full post: View Post
They drove him to the farm.

They handed him a rifle.

Did they think he was going gopher hunting?

Zan, I mean no offense, I use sarcasm only to make the point.....and yes, I know Roscoe had them terrorized, he had everybody in the town terrorized......but they were armed as well.

And nasty evil guys stop bullets the same way everyone else does.......

And confrontation was not even necessary....a simple phone call.....

I think justice was served.....they will both be out within 5 years.
 
Cannuck
#3
The police were terrified of this guy. Why are citizens held to a higher standard.
 
Zan
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by ColpyView Post

They drove him to the farm.

They handed him a rifle.

Did they think he was going gopher hunting?

Zan, I mean no offense, I use sarcasm only to make the point.....and yes, I know Roscoe had them terrorized, he had everybody in the town terrorized......but they were armed as well.

And nasty evil guys stop bullets the same way everyone else does.......

And confrontation was not even necessary....a simple phone call.....

I think justice was served.....they will both be out within 5 years.

Colpy, did you watch the interview? You are correct in some of your statements, but not all, according to what I saw.

They did indeed give him a ride - under fear of violence against themselves and their family. I personally can't just write off the fact that they were terrorized into complying with Roszkoe's demands. I think when we're afraid we are capable of all kinds of things we wouldn't really expect of ourselves under 'normal' circumstances.

I don't believe they were in fact armed Colpy - they handed the weapons over to James Roszko and were unarmed throughout the incident if I recall correctly.

I think you're right - they should have made a call to the police - I know that's what I think I would do, but you know... this guy had already implied violence towards Hennessy's wife and children while he was away from the home once.

Hennessy claims he thought Roszko was going to burn down the barn with the pot in it... this makes sense to me... and also explains why Hennessy would want to high tail it outta there after dropping Roszko off - Hennessy admitted he'd sold some pot for Roszko in the past and wanted to be rid of this guy and any possible connection between them regarding the pot, as well as really seeing just how much of a lunatic this guy really was... in short, he was plain old scared of a whole bunch of things here... including the possibility that Roszko might come back and cause harm to Hennesy's family if he called the cops... I don't think it's that much of a stretch, given the fact that Roszko had already acted in a manner to suggest violence towards his family...

I didn't take any offense at all to your post Colpy, I asked for responses because I know I'm a bleeding heart and I have to be shown cold hard intent to consider someone 'that' guilty. I didn't see that in the interview.... but I certainly saw it in the actions of Roszko... and my sense after watching the show had me thinking that Hennesy and Cheeseman were being tried and sentenced in lieu of a live suspect.

Also, in the interview, I didn't see Hennessy deny any of his actions... he owned up to what he did, but he provided the back story that is crucial to understanding how this all came about. It makes a difference knowing these details imo.
 
Colpy
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by CannuckView Post

The police were terrified of this guy. Why are citizens held to a higher standard.

Well, maybe I'm a lunatic, but I do not understand how an armed man can be terrorized....by one man. Was Roscoe bulletproof?? That the RCMP was terrorized by him, if they were terrorized of him, speaks to their lack of cojones.....and, to be blunt, I don't believe it. were they terrified of him, they'd have made some preparation to defend themselves....had shotguns, been under cover, had more officers........something.

In the late 1800, Black Jack Pershing, then a Captain in command of 100 US Cavalry, was sent to the Canadian border to meet a tribe of Sioux Indians being escorted out of Canada by the NWMP......the Mounties. Pershing (later General in command of US forces in Europe in WWI) was astounded to be greeted by one red-coated corporal at the border among the dozens of warriors of the much-feared Sioux...."Where" he asked "are the rest of your men"

"Just me Sir"

"Just One of you! But there are so many Sioux!"

"Just one tribe, Sir"

Have we sunk so far since then???
 
Colpy
#6
Quote: Originally Posted by ZanView Post

Colpy, did you watch the interview? You are correct in some of your statements, but not all, according to what I saw.
They did indeed give him a ride - under fear of violence against themselves and their family. I personally can't just write off the fact that they were terrorized into complying with Roszkoe's demands. I think when we're afraid we are capable of all kinds of things we wouldn't really expect of ourselves under 'normal' circumstances.
I don't believe they were in fact armed Colpy - they handed the weapons over to James Roszko and were unarmed throughout the incident if I recall correctly.
I think you're right - they should have made a call to the police - I know that's what I think I would do, but you know... this guy had already implied violence towards Hennessy's wife and children while he was away from the home once.
Hennessy claims he thought Roszko was going to burn down the barn with the pot in it... this makes sense to me... and also explains why Hennessy would want to high tail it outta there after dropping Roszko off - Hennessy admitted he'd sold some pot for Roszko in the past and wanted to be rid of this guy and any possible connection between them regarding the pot, as well as really seeing just how much of a lunatic this guy really was... in short, he was plain old scared of a whole bunch of things here... including the possibility that Roszko might come back and cause harm to...

Quote has been trimmed, See full post: View Post
Honestly, I started to watch the interview and shut it off in disgust.

It shakes me up to see people so easily coerced.

Yes, Roscoe was a looney.....so, I have to ask, why were these guys dealing with him in the first place?

And obviously, they had enough knowledge to put him away.........which, if he was threatening their family, they should have done long ago.

And, I know this is going to get me in trouble...........but whomever threatens my wife had best hope I don't take him seriously, because if I did take him seriously, he will wind up unable to carry it out, one way or another.

When the law won't act, I'm all for vigilante justice.

In the final analysis, a simple phone call...."Look, Roscoe is armed and headed for the farm..........now. Somebody is going to die" CLICK

That's all.
 
Zan
#7
Colpy, I respect your viewpoint, and clearly you're not alone in that opinion.... I don't happen to agree, but like I said... I am very much influenced by my gut reaction... and I read Hennessy as being completely honest and forthcoming in that interview.

If you think I'm gullible, you certainly wouldn't be the first.
 
Spade
#8
You're spot on, Zan. Hennessey was totally believable - from what he said and how he said it! Guity of youth and stupidity, but of manslaughter...?
 
Zan
#9
Yes Spade - when I think of the many stupid things I did in my youth - yes, even in my twenties, I feel like I should bend down and kiss the ground for whatever divine intervention kept my follies from bringing the wrath of the law down upon my head. Pure dumb luck probably.
 
VanIsle
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by ZanView Post

Families lament news of possible appeal in Mountie killing case
You know, I have to admit I had not really followed the details of this case that closely beyond the fact that there had been a horrible tragedy and loss of life.
The Fifth Estate ran documentary and interview with Shawn Hennessey and his wife a few nights ago, and I came away from that deeply disturbed about how this case was dealt with.
After seeing that program, and seeing and hearing the accused tell his side of the story, I can't help but feel that this is a situation that got out of control with no malice or forethought on the part of the two accused men... perhaps some stupidity and lack of forsight, but I'm not sure what any one of us would have done in their shoes... there was certainly opportunity for them to call the cops and try to put a stop to this before it happened... but ... and imo, this is a very large BUT: hindsight is 20/20.
If you haven't seen the episode of the Fifth Estate I'm referring to, you can catch it here.

Quote has been trimmed, See full post: View Post
I watched your video. All 40+ min. of it. I watched the accused tell his lies of the story. It's more than obvious that they turned themselves in only after they knew the jig was up and it was only a matter of time until the police were coming for them anyway. They recognized the new "friends" were police. They got scared because they knew the police were on to them. There are holes all over his story. He didn't know Rossco well but the guy knows him well enough to call him at work? He sells marijuana for the guy but he doesn't know him well? Did they not stop to wonder why he was suddenly going to burn down his own Quonset Hut and all the marijuana? They knew exactly what he was up to but they decided to play coy. They had ALL night to call the police and tell them he had been there to get a gun and don't tell me they believed he was really looking to kill a bear! Hennessey was soooo afraid for his family that he slept well all night long and then got up and left his family all alone and went into the city for a meeting. His wife states: Oh my God, how could you NOT see this coming! I don't think she even realized what she said. She had never seen Rossco before but she knew he had been in jail for violence before, apparently. Did she also know her husband sold marijuana for Rossco?
Hennessey only feels responsible to an extent he states. He talks about looking over and seeing his wife's face down in the dirt while the police caught them. The four policemen are down in the dirt forever. Hennessey (and I hold him way more responsible than his brother-in-law) carries the burden of remorse. Bull! The only remorse he carries is the fact that he is going to jail.
Every year in Regina there is a memorial for the fallen police officers. I happen to be there for the un-veiling of the memorials for those four fallen police officers. Their wives, children, parents, brothers & sisters etc. were all there - the first memorial, not even a year later - only a few months. I wish you could view that on tape. I wish you could have seen the sorrow that took place there that day. Children are left without their father's. Wives are left behind. Hennessey's little bit of tears were nothing by comparison. There were also several hundred police officers there and there was not a dry eye as we all paid homage to those who fell in Mayerthorpe that day.
Have I changed my mind? No. They deserve all they got and more. They - and particularly Hennessey, could have prevented the deaths of 4 police officers by one phone call. He did not have to attack Rossco. He is a coward. The lowest of cowards. Have I read about all this before? You bet. Every word in every paper, listened to every word on the news and read every email sent. You appear to feel sympathy for Hennessey. Well - I think you are being taken in. The man does not deserve anyone's sympathy.
 
VanIsle
#11
Quote: Originally Posted by SpadeView Post

You're spot on, Zan. Hennessey was totally believable - from what he said and how he said it! Guity of youth and stupidity, but of manslaughter...?

You better watch it again Spade. Youth? Just how young is this married with children man? He lied all the way through that trying to gain sympathy and he took you in. I can't believe you would fall for that. He caused the deaths of the four mounties almost like he pulled the trigger. One phone call! He could have stopped it all.
 
VanIsle
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by ColpyView Post

Well, maybe I'm a lunatic, but I do not understand how an armed man can be terrorized....by one man. Was Roscoe bulletproof?? That the RCMP was terrorized by him, if they were terrorized of him, speaks to their lack of cojones.....and, to be blunt, I don't believe it. were they terrified of him, they'd have made some preparation to defend themselves....had shotguns, been under cover, had more officers........something.

In the late 1800, Black Jack Pershing, then a Captain in command of 100 US Cavalry, was sent to the Canadian border to meet a tribe of Sioux Indians being escorted out of Canada by the NWMP......the Mounties. Pershing (later General in command of US forces in Europe in WWI) was astounded to be greeted by one red-coated corporal at the border among the dozens of warriors of the much-feared Sioux...."Where" he asked "are the rest of your men"

"Just me Sir"

"Just One of you! But there are so many Sioux!"

"Just one tribe, Sir"

Have we sunk so far since then???

They searched that farm. Rossco was nowhere to be found. It was empty. Did they become over confident and a little careless. I guess I would have to say yes. Could they still be alive today? Yes. One phone call from Hennessey. That's all it would have taken. He was not afraid of Rossco. He proved that by going to bed and by sleeping all night and especially by leaving his family alone and going to the city the next morning. He's a liar.
 
VanIsle
#13
Colpy, you should have watched the video. Hennessey's brother-in-law was not coerced, nor was Henessey. His brother-in-law started bragging is what has obviously happened and Henessey got scared because he started to realized his wife's brother's girlfriend was a cop in disguise. He was not there. How does he know his brother-in-law was supposedly coerced?
 
CanadianLove
#14
I originally thought that it was too harsh but I do see the reason now. I had thought that the RCMP had known that they did what they did. I didn't know that they had to put on the sting operation to figure out how he had arrived there. I just thought that they were holding off laying charges to gather more information.

I had read a bio on Rozsko a while back but could not find it again to give you the link. He was a mad man. There was talk of sexual exploitation of young men who became him helpers - I was under the understanding that these were the two. He had been raping them since their teens in return for borrowing the truck to drive and drugs to smoke. His father disowned him 8 years before this happened and refused to agknowlege the guys existance. I labeled him a sick minded little man with a Nepolian Complex.

If they had to go through all the work they did to get them to come clean, yes I think they received the proper sentence. 10-12 years is not that long for a cop killer - remember they will be treated like kings by the other inmates. 4 RCMP died - the most at once in 120 years.
 
VanIsle
#15
There was talk of sexual exploitation of young men who became him helpers
In all I read and in all I heard, I have never heard this before today. I don't think it could be true. There must be some mix-up
 
VanIsle
#16
Thanks for your correct spelling of Roszko. I have been spelling it wrong in all my posts. This topic is extremely difficult. It is very near and dear to me and mine.
 
CanadianLove
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by ColpyView Post

Well, maybe I'm a lunatic, but I do not understand how an armed man can be terrorized....by one man. Was Roscoe bulletproof?? That the RCMP was terrorized by him, if they were terrorized of him, speaks to their lack of cojones.....and, to be blunt, I don't believe it. were they terrified of him, they'd have made some preparation to defend themselves....had shotguns, been under cover, had more officers........something.

In the late 1800, Black Jack Pershing, then a Captain in command of 100 US Cavalry, was sent to the Canadian border to meet a tribe of Sioux Indians being escorted out of Canada by the NWMP......the Mounties. Pershing (later General in command of US forces in Europe in WWI) was astounded to be greeted by one red-coated corporal at the border among the dozens of warriors of the much-feared Sioux...."Where" he asked "are the rest of your men"

"Just me Sir"

"Just One of you! But there are so many Sioux!"

"Just one tribe, Sir"

Have we sunk so far since then???

I said this type of thing back when they killed the axe man in Winnipeg with the tazer last Fall. They have lost the Sam Steele attitude. The incident at the Vancouver airport is another one. Situations like that they should be able to drop the gun belt and just kick the guys a$$. But we call that police brutality.

As far as the attitude goes people today are to chicken **** of dying. They think that we can die from the smallest thing. The human body is pretty damn tough. There are incidents - such as Rozsko's - that I think they knew they let it go to long. For some reason they allowed that little freak to exist and he bite them a lot harder them they ever expected. I have to say that the RCMP are likely partially to blame there, but also know we will never hear how. Maybe after all involed are dead or something, or they get overloaded with guilt and start to blow their own brains out - maybe walk into the line of fire.

But you are right the RCMP needs to revamp their training program because the present day program is producing officers no balls, or at least a lot smaller ones then they have the reputation for.
 
CanadianLove
#18
Quote: Originally Posted by IslandpacificView Post

There was talk of sexual exploitation of young men who became him helpers
In all I read and in all I heard, I have never heard this before today. I don't think it could be true. There must be some mix-up

It was a bio I had come across a couple of years back. It was on one of the Killer sites I was reading about Piccton in BC. It was a good 6-7 pages from when he was a kid right up to the killings. He was a f###head his whole life.
 
VanIsle
#19
Quote: Originally Posted by CanadianLoveView Post

I said this type of thing back when they killed the axe man in Winnipeg with the tazer last Fall. They have lost the Sam Steele attitude. The incident at the Vancouver airport is another one. Situations like that they should be able to drop the gun belt and just kick the guys a$$. But we call that police brutality.

As far as the attitude goes people today are to chicken **** of dying. They think that we can die from the smallest thing. The human body is pretty damn tough. There are incidents - such as Rozsko's - that I think they knew they let it go to long. For some reason they allowed that little freak to exist and he bite them a lot harder them they ever expected. I have to say that the RCMP are likely partially to blame there, but also know we will never hear how. Maybe after all involed are dead or something, or they get overloaded with guilt and start to blow their own brains out - maybe walk into the line of fire.

But you are right the RCMP needs to revamp their training program because the present day program is producing officers no balls, or at least a lot smaller ones then they have the reputation for.

No, the RCMP still have all their gear intact. The women there have grown their own in fact. It is the public out cry over police brutality, the taser, the you-name it, they'll complain about it so the government puts laws in place and stops them from being the way they used to be and it's government who arms them with the weapons they have so we can have more public out-cry over how brutal the police are. Too many cameras and not enough dark back alley's anymore. The police no longer carry any authority and the public knows it. Why do you think they use the taser so often?
 
Zan
#20
This a very emotionally charge issue to be sure. I too feel for the families of these fallen officers.

I suppose I feel for all the families who will pay a price. The impact of this one stupid act of.... well, stupidity is just devastating on so many levels.

I still feel there is an issue here of intent... and I don't believe that was present. I realize that's not the only issue here in determining not just guilt, but degree of guilt. For me though, intent is the highest indicator.

Island Pacific, the passion you write with about this does demonstrate that this is a sensitive subject for you. I'm sorry if you've been impacted in personal way by this story, or one like it. I wouldn't wish that on anyone.
 
VanIsle
#21
Thank you Zan. You are a good person.
 
#juan
#22
I watched that video and I watched the original news reports. I read everything I could find on this tragedy. From the start Roscoe didn't want just any gun. He wanted a particular rifle that would give him an enormous firepower advantage over the four mounties. Roscoe made no secret that he was going to raise hell with that rifle.
Hennessey and his brother in law gave him the rifle, ammo, and provided transportation to the back of the crime scene. As far as I'm concerned, that makes them guilty. They could have earned some sympathy had they made a call and warned the RCMP that their constables were in danger. They did nothing of the sort. Earlier, Roscoe made several trips to Hennessy's home trying to stash a truck that was going to be repossessed. He then wanted the automatic rifle. That Roscoe was desparate was, obvious. Giving Roscoe the rifle and providing transportation made Hennessey and his brother in law as guilty as Roscoe.

Just another couple items. Roscoe sold pot to Hennessy. Roscoe also dealt in auto parts. Did Hennessey or his brother in law buy stolen auto parts from Roscoe?

I probably would have found those two liars guilty of manslaughter at the very least.
 
shadowshiv
#23
I think they got what they deserved. No, scratch that. They should count their lucky stars that they got the sentences they did. Four RCMP officers were killed by a piece of crap, and the two that gave him the weapon that killed the officers are just as guilty in my eyes. Disgusting.
 
JLM
#24
These guys got 12 and 15 years and I'm certainly not one to judge their degree of guilt........what was in their minds is more important than their actions. Sentences of that length should be reserved for REAL criminals. Were these guys real dangerous criminals and a threat to the public, or were they merely stupid idiots?
 
shadowshiv
#25
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

These guys got 12 and 15 years and I'm certainly not one to judge their degree of guilt........what was in their minds is more important than their actions. Sentences of that length should be reserved for REAL criminals. Were these guys real dangerous criminals and a threat to the public, or were they merely stupid idiots?

Stupid idiots that just happened to get four people killed.
 
JLM
#26
Quote: Originally Posted by shadowshivView Post

Stupid idiots that just happened to get four people killed.


Yes, indirectly. What about the guy who supplied the gun in the first place? I think the sentences were a bit severe.
 
Colpy
#27
Quote: Originally Posted by JLMView Post

Yes, indirectly. What about the guy who supplied the gun in the first place? I think the sentences were a bit severe.

I believe the weapon actually used in the shooting (a Heckler & Koch Model 91) was originally smuggled in from the USA.....as it is completely prohibited in Canada (stupid as that is).

The guy that originally supplied the weapon would have no direct knowledge of Rozko's (how the Hell do you spell it?) intent, and is guilty of nothing IMHO, unlike the guys who supplied him with a weapon and drove him to the farm, knowing he had it for the purpose of confronting the police.
 
Zan
#28
I have to say... we see lesser sentences for deaths inflicted by impaired drivers - this is a degree of stupidity that does carry some intent and foreknowledge of consequences - and this the difference to me between what Hennessy and Cheeseman did.

Some kinds of stupid can only truly be evident in tragic hindsight. Some of the facts of this case are a being glossed over in what I see as a bit of an over zealous desire/need to have a scapegoat for this tragedy - a live scapegoat that can satiate a need for vengeance rather than have us settle on a less satisfying result with no one left alive to punish.
 
Spade
#29
Every life is equally valuable. Mrs. Dziekanski grieves the loss of her son. Will equal justice be done? Or, ...
 
VanIsle
#30
Quote: Originally Posted by SpadeView Post

Every life is equally valuable. Mrs. Dziekanski grieves the loss of her son. Will equal justice be done? Or, ...

You cannot begin to equate the loss of 4 police officers with what happened to Robert Dziekanski. By saying that I do not mean his life was worth less than theirs. The death of the police officers was pre-meditated and there was not moments in which his death could have been prevented as in the case with the four officers. There was hours and hours - a whole night passed without a single phone call. To suggest that all these men are guilty of is stupidity is an insult to the four who died, at the very least. I have a slide show I would like to add in here but I don't know how to do it. I really wish I could show it to all of you. Like it or not, the penalty for killing a police officer is much higher then killing a civilian.
I have not read it yet but I see there is a thread on here regarding the RCMP and tasers again today. If nothing else, Robert Dziekanski's death may eliminate or lower the use of the taser so his death may not be completely in vain. The four officers lives were taken completely in vain. Juan said that he watched the actual story on TV rather than what has been shown here. I would have to watch it again to be sure but it appeared to me that parts of it were shown more than once meaning it was rigged to gain the public's sympathy. I could be wrong.
 

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