We have all heard by now, the cookie cutter defenses Ofc. Betty Shelby has tried to sell the press and her department. She was scared for her life, she thought he had a weapon, he reached into his car (through a closed window) and finally, she believed that because she took a class on drugs, she was able to recognize that Terence was high on PCP. Not only is her claim laughable, it is unfortunate that many out there believe that police are experts on drugs, despite never having done them.
Anyone who has any experience with police work or with drug use, knows that Terence Crutcher demonstrated no signs of PCP intoxication. PCP intoxication looks very similar to individuals experiencing excited delirium. Excited delirium is a condition that usually begins with heavy drug use, followed by extreme dehydration. This causes those afflicted to literally act like a crazy person: Running, flailing of arms, incoherent statements are all symptoms of excited delirium, as well as PCP use.
PCP is a heavy duty hallucinogenic drug that radically alters perception, behavior, body temperature, mood and comprehension. Did Terence Crutcher appear to have any trouble understanding the situation he was in? He obviously knew he was dealing with police, as is demonstrated by his raising of his arms. A person high on PCP wouldn’t be able to comprehend the difference between a police officer and anyone else. According to a Canadian addiction website, the effects of PCP are manifest anxiety, a sense of impending doom, paranoia, extreme aggression and psychosis. Did Terence Crutcher demonstrate any of these symptoms as he calmly walked back to his vehicle? As he calmly raised his arms? I don’t think so.
Betty Shelby took a class, which certified her as a Drug Recognition Expert. The DRE program, for anyone who really understands drugs, is a joke. Fundamentally, it is a class that allows officers who undergo a three week course on drugs and their effects on the body, to testify as an expert in drug cases. The vast majority of DRE’s work is in their agency’s DUI unit. The purpose is really to be able to determine the effects of drugs on a potential DUI narcotics suspect. Without exaggeration, the course entails nothing more than memorizing a series of charts. The news has reported that Betty Shelby is an expert on drugs, therefore her belief that Terence Crutcher was high on PCP is a valid one. It was not. Memorizing a chart gives you as much real world drug experience as learning to fish on YouTube.
Police have also claimed that they found PCP inside Crutcher’s vehicle. While this may be the complete truth, I have my suspicions it is not. Knowing that toxicology takes weeks – if not longer – to come back with a result, the determination that PCP was found could only have been made through the use of a presumptive test. Presumptive tests are not accurate and often result in false positives. I have a hunch that when the real toxicology report comes back, it will show negative for PCP. PCP is not a common drug, and most cops will never come across it in their career. It is far too suspicious that the Tulsa police just happened to find PCP after Betty Shelby claimed she believed Crutcher was on PCP, yet demonstrating no signs of intoxication.
After watching videos of individuals high on PCP, does it appear that Terence Crutcher was one of them? From the multiple angles of the shooting, we can clearly see that he was calm and kept his hands visible at all times. The attempts to sell the public on the PCP angle of this case, is nothing more than police attempting to reverse engineer this encounter. The problem is, we can all see with our own eyes that Betty Shelby’s claims of fearing for her life, due to Crutcher’s PCP use, is nothing more than a piece of fiction.
Sources: Acadiana Addiction Center, DECP.org.
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