Pittsburg, California police responded to an admittedly drug-addled man’s call to 9-1-1 spouting all manner of nonsense including a report of an alleged kidnapping. It turns out that the man, 32-year-old Kerdell Lillard, made the call from the roof of a strip mall. When police arrived, he wanted no part of the officers he’d summoned.
In fact, he proved his willingness to use his pistol to shoot people to escape custody. It didn’t go well for him.
Now, if the authorities had sent a social worker instead of an armed police officer, perhaps this story would have had a different ending. After all, sometimes all a bad guy needs to straighten up is a good hug and a kind word.
In the real world, even without social workers and touchy-feely intervention, Mr. Lillard not only survived, but escaped relatively unscathed.
The police bodycam video of the incident begins with the aspiring rocket surgeon calling 911 to report “I want to report that uh, I’m being framed by the apartment building I live in.”
It goes downhill from there for Mr. Lillard.
“I found, uh, I left my family last night to uh go home and to uh and to take drugs to figure out that I was bein’ framed… Even my bail. Even my probation officer. Like they’re… they’re… they’re all fake.”
Just imagine the call from the dispatcher’s perspective… MUTES MIC: “Hey Sally, I’ve got a live one here. He says he took drugs to figure out that he’s been framed.”
From there Mr. Lillard goes on to report a kidnapping.
In one of those, “you wouldn’t believe it if you didn’t see it” moments, bystander video captured the 32-year-old man making the call from the roof of a strip mall building.
When police roll up, Lillard slides off the roof and accesses a handgun from under the fender of a pickup truck. Because that’s where we call keep our heaters, right?
He then ignored officers’ commands, telling one cop, “I’m not goin’ witchu!” before taking off running around some cars. A moment later, a second officer encounters him and shoots him in the arm in a snap shot.
Fair warning: Video NSFW – mostly due to language.
Unlike the man in Montgomery County Maryland who took total of twelve rounds to his chest while wearing an evil grin on his face until the very end, Kerdell Lillard caught a round in the forearm and immediately collapsed.
That single shot completely changed his trajectory in life – for the moment. While he continued to run his mouth claiming that he was being framed (for what isn’t clear) and stealing his stuff, he nevertheless wisely ended his resistance.
There are lessons here for everyone. First off, avoid lunatics whenever and wherever possible. If you see some mope calling 9-1-1 while sitting on a rooftop — with or without a tin foil hat — it might be a good time to leave the area or at least find good cover.
Furthermore, crazy people do crazy things. You don’t want any part of that kind of drama. Just as happened here, the lunatic might produce a weapon. The crackpot might even take off running in your direction.
It’s a fair bet that Mr. Lillard could have shot someone if they had gotten in his way or somehow encroached on his psychosis. Fortunately for the residents of Pittsburg, California, the cop got there first.