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Fouad Kaady police shooting public inquest call told to hit the road

Anybody thinking a public inquest could help the public learn about why and how Fouad Kaady died by police shooting just got shot at by Clackamas County D.A. John S. Foote.
In the paper indy readers love to hate, Clackamas County D.A. John S. Foote responded to a call by the big O for a public inquest. I as well as many others, likely felt that a public inquest offered some hope regarding this matter, even though I know very little about the nature of public inquests and the hope they might realistically offer.

Foote finally piped up in the O today with the following bit:

**********Inquest wouldn't help
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
The Oregonian has called for a public inquest into the death of Fouad Kaady (editorial, Nov. 1). A grand jury has already listened carefully to the sworn testimony of 40 witnesses and visited the scene of the shooting. In addition, Clackamas County Sheriff Craig Roberts released the police reports after the grand jury's decision.
I do not believe a public inquest would further the important discussion that is ongoing about officer-involved shootings. Under Oregon statutes, a public inquest may be ordered to determine the "cause and manner of death." In this case, those are well known. Furthermore, a public inquest is a flawed legal process. The statutes do not clearly state whether the rules of evidence apply or who may participate. An inquest can turn into a forum to air grievances or personal opinions.
In the last legislative session, Senate Bill 301 would have required that grand jury proceedings in officer-involved shooting deaths be transcribed and made public. Unfortunately, it didn't pass. It would have provided a better way to inform the public. I encourage our legislators to approve it in the next session.
******JOHN S. FOOTE, District Attorney, Clackamas County Oregon City*********

Well, that's just too sweet isn't it? Sounds like Foote isn't having any trouble sleeping at night. Sounds like he's hoping the door is finally slamming on the quest for any knowledge about the mysterious course of events that might help to reduce the incidence of such deaths by police in the future.

Where does the public go from here to gain further insight into the complexities of the circumstances leading to Fouad's death on that day. With information from a variety of sources, that the public has been supplied with, doesn't Fouad's death sound like it has the grounds for wrongful death?

Who will take the challenge to discover the causality leading to the death of a citizen at the hands of dubiously trained officers of the law? Who will take up the challenge to defy Clackamas County's desire to callously sweep under the rug a matter they seem to consider only a mere annoyance whose value is limited to parking meter revenue and fines they can gouge out of those conducting the vigil outside the courthouse as the grand jury convened.

D.A. John Foote's comments are just a sad chapter in a continuing sad saga of public officials who unleash improperly trained public employees under their authority upon troubled citizens. Foote shoots down hope for success in a public inquests effort to effectively explore what happened to Fouad Kaady. As a top Clackamas County official, his response to a request for a public inquest in this case raises questions about the degree of humanity that exists in the Clackamas County legal department.

With the exception of his reccomendation that Senate Bill 301 be passed sometime in the future, he offers citizens no other suggestions for learning important information about this case, information that could be highly beneficial to reducing the incidence of shootings of citizens by police in the future. Is this really an example of a district attorney doing a good job for all the citizens of the county he serves?
"public inquest offered some hope" indeed 10.Nov.2005 03:46

reposted quotes originally compiled by "peace rebel girl"

John Trudell: "I don't believe in hope," he says. "When I was a child I was taught the story of Pandora's box. The gods gave Pandora a box and told her not to open it because it contained the seven evils of the world. Of course, she opened the box. And out came the seven evils. But then Hope came out of the box, to help us deal with the evils.

"I always questioned that. The eighth thing to come out of that box was Hope. To me that meant that Hope was the eighth evil of the world. How come Hope didn't have its own box? What was it doing in a fucking box of evil?

"So I pray more and hope less. If you cling to hope, you sit and hope and you do nothing. It's like heroin. Praying and fighting and expressing -- that's doing something."

Jim Page: I almost said "they give me hope," but it's different than that. John Trudell used to talk about "hope." He used to say that only when there is no hope will something get done. I used to think that was a cynical thing to say, and maybe it is, but I agree. Hope is something you see out of the corner of your eye. Hope is waiting for Godot. Hope means you're not doing anything but maybe somebody else will. Hope means god will intervene if he feels like it. I'm told that hope was one of the objects in Pandora's Box. Hope is a lottery ticket.

Kill the Policy 10.Nov.2005 08:36


How do we get to the policy, the one that tells cops how to handle situations but apparently doesn't give guidance in medical situations so they don't exist (remember: when you're a hammer, everything looks like a nail).

An officer-to-be explained to me why cops ask people to lie on their stomach. Is there any consideration that some people may not be able to for various reasons? I doubt it.

The policy is what we need to attack because as long as cops follow the policy, there will be no convictions. How can we change the policy? How can we have a say in how we are policed, or at least get the cops to recognize the number of variables that might make a person UNABLE to obey their blind commands.

Give Mr Foote a call ! 10.Nov.2005 09:02


The ph# for the DA is 503-655-8431 E-mail is  districtattorney@co.clackamas.or.us