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Deputy shoots 70-year-old man after mistaking cane for gun

Deputy Shoots 70-Year-Old Man After Mistaking Cane for Gun

A controversial case In South Carolina has gotten lots of attention in the news. A deputy shot a 70-year-old man during a traffic stop, and was immediately brought to tears. HLN explains what happened.

'A shocking dash-cam video shows a deputy shooting an elderly man. Now he says he thought the man had a shot gun - no! It was a cane!'

York County Deputy Terrance Knox shot 70-year-old Bobby Canipe stopping his car over in Clover, South Carolina.

'Sir! Hey, hey, hey! (gun shots) Shots fired, shots fired! Drop the gun, drop the gun!'

Canipe was hit once but is expected to recover. When Knox realized Canipe was only holding a cane, he started to cry

"I tried to tell him 'don't move' but he, he pulled it out anyway! (crying)"

Trent Faris, a spokesman for the York County Sheriff's Office, says Knox followed procedure.

'It does appear at this time that deputy Knox's actions were an appropriate response to what he reasonably believed to be an imminent threat to his life'

The Herald Online quotes Sheriff Bruce Bryant..

'We're not making excuses. You've got to realize that these officers must act to protect their own safety. You do not exit your vehicle and go meet the police officer. You do not do that.'

Knox has been placed on paid administrative leave, and the incident is under investigation. A prosecutor will determine if any charges will be filed.

Join the discussion

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Frank March 17 2014 at 1:09 PM

Good thing for the 70 year old man is the cop can't shoot straight. Problem is anyone or anything within 50 feet of his target are in danger.

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louisecan2 March 17 2014 at 12:23 PM

One thing good about this story, the 70 year old man lived. I feel sorry for any officer these days stopping a driver..as you just never know. After reading this, I will have a talk with my own dad to remind him of the rules of the road. If he gets stopped..Stay in the car. Older people tend to forget, maybe the man couldn't hear, could of been dark out..but for the Officer to cry lets me know he felt threatened, it was a mistake.

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3 replies
rodney March 17 2014 at 12:16 PM

We should develope and publicize the how to's for being pulled over and appropriate behavior.
1. Keep your hands visable to approching officer.
2. Do not try to exit your vehicle.
3. Wait for officer to instruct you as, what to do next.

Any one else that have a contribution to these basic rules add them here. I was taught early in my driving experience to get out of the car as soon as safe to do so, relenquishing your turff but that rule no longer is correct. STAY IN YOUR VEHICLE WITH BOTH HANDS IN PLAIN SIGHT.

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2 replies
slackwarerobert rodney March 17 2014 at 12:47 PM

You left off, take gun out and hold it at the ready.
Shoot if he touches his.

Staying IN your vehicle is consenting to an illegal search.
Outside with the doors locked makes it breaking and entering.

If the cop doesn't feel safe, he can call a cop.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
slackwarerobert rodney March 17 2014 at 1:13 PM

Sorry, as long as I can't see HIS hands also I need mine to draw if needed.
Both hands can be seen when you are OUTSIDE the vehicle.

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Normie Baby March 17 2014 at 12:14 PM

Thing is, us older people have a tendency to leave the car as we were taught 60 years ago when we first learned to drive. Unfortunate.

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1 reply
James M. Adams Normie Baby March 17 2014 at 12:17 PM

Stay off the road, grandpa.

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1 reply
ldrthmaul James M. Adams March 17 2014 at 12:28 PM

Why is it never people like you that get shot by pigs?

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DannyDixons March 17 2014 at 12:11 PM

Good shooting the guy got out of his vehicle and did not follow direction. No doubt that it wasn't a gun but it clearly looked like he was pulling a rifle or shotgun and refused to follow orders to drop the item. This guys got himself shot and put the officer in a terrible situation.

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2 replies
rudimario DannyDixons March 17 2014 at 12:20 PM

An experienced cop would know the difference. But to your kind.....well fantasy land is the norm.

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slackwarerobert DannyDixons March 17 2014 at 1:15 PM

When the DOCTOR orders you to use a cane, a cop cannot stop you from doing so.
He doesn't like it, he can let the motorist go on his way.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
oujoou March 17 2014 at 11:57 AM

When a cane looks like a shotgun . . . you need a Time-Out. Obviously from the reaction . . . a mistake. I was told by a Campus policeman . . . a long time ago . . . that the best thing to do when you are pulled over is to put both hands on the wheel for the patrolman to see. I don't know how many people know or DO that. :( Luckily . . . the old man is still kicking. :) Awful. :(

Flag Reply +6 rate up
Wyboo51 March 17 2014 at 11:55 AM


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dpa5794166 March 17 2014 at 11:46 AM

it wa a cane a walking cane.

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2 replies
tsr5112 dpa5794166 March 17 2014 at 11:51 AM

Maybe it was Ole Trigger Happy that was loaded.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
chansen921 dpa5794166 March 17 2014 at 1:09 PM

In the dark it could look like a shotgun.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
Charlie March 17 2014 at 11:13 AM

When I get pulled over,I raise my right hand so it can be seen through the rear window,and I keep my left hand on the steering wheel. I also shut off the engine & turn on my 4 way flashers. Remember,this AMERICA,you are GUILTY UNTIL PROVEN INNOCENT.

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1 reply
Dolly D. Charlie March 17 2014 at 11:16 AM

Are you serious? What makes you think this cop knows this old man? Just because he is old doesn't mean he can't do damage to another.

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1 reply
charlie Dolly D. March 17 2014 at 11:26 PM

Might I ask?? What are you rambling about?....I never said anything about the Cop or the Elderly gentleman that was shot..The officer,as is most law enforment officers,was on edge..But in this country,The U.S.A you are,GUILTY,UNTIL PROVEN INNOCENT...period.. I don't trust Cops..Troopers..or anybody else for that matter..

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posthuf March 17 2014 at 11:11 AM

I saw this the other day and just knew the reaction of the dummies in this country would be all over the cop.
Dark night.
Side of the road.
Only head lights to show what is going on.
He's alone.
His attention is split between the guy getting out of the car and the other passenger, either of whom could have been a threat. Or both of whom could have been a threat.
Until you've been in his situation you have no right to judge him.

The best part of the video, the part that should have ALL of your attention is the part where he realizes there was no gun and the emotional impact it had on him.
Every cop, probably ever soldier, who has ever fired a gun at a suspect or enemy goes thru the same emotions. It's not easy to take a human life unless you've been trained from a very young age to do so. Even when it's your job.

This guy will live the rest of his life carrying this around, just as soldiers as far back as time carry their burden. It never goes away, it never gets lighter.

And all anybody can think to do is tell us we drink too much!

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