This story stinks.
At about 2 am on Friday Chris Carter, a campus police officer from the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, noticed a student, Robert Cameron Redus, driving erratically near campus. Apparently Redus didn’t stop his car immediately when Carter turned on his lights, instead driving into the parking lot of his building.
There was a disagreement during the stop, and then apparently some sort of struggle. According to a witness, the officer told the student that he was going to shoot, and the Redus responded by asking sarcastically, “Oh, you’re gonna shoot me?”
The officer did, firing four to six times. Redus died at the scene.
There’s a lot still unknown about the incident. But based on the facts available now, it’s a very strange story.
First, there’s the fact that a campus safety officer at a private Catholic college was carrying a gun on routine duty. I’ll admit that I didn’t know that was a thing.
Second, there’s the location of the initial incident — more than half a mile from the college. Since when do campus police make traffic stops at off-campus locations?
Third, there’s the officer’s record — nine jobs at eight different police agencies in eight years.
And then, of course, there’s the incident itself. A student is driving erratically. He doesn’t stop when told to. The cop, who has a checkered record, confronts him, threatens to shoot him. The student gives him attitude. Seconds later, he’s dead.
Maybe there’s a good explanation for all of it. But right now?
This story stinks.
Update | I haven’t found more recent data yet, but as of 2005 only 27% of American private colleges and universities of the size of the University of the Incarnate Word had armed campus police.
Second Update | UIW’s official statement on the shooting refers to Cameron Redus as “the suspect” and praises the officer’s “extensive law-enforcement background.”
Morning Update | Cameron Redus’s family has hired a lawyer.