Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood worked an area of California with a higher-than-average number of police killings. Youngblood has said that that’s because “financially” it’s better to kill a suspect than it is to wound them and pay for their medical care for life.
Officers have said before that the county force, labeled “America’s deadliest police,” was “in desperate need of positive changes.”
Youngblood was looking for an endorsement in 2006 when he posed the question, “When a deputy shoots somebody, which way is better financially? To cripple them or kill them for the county?”
“Kill them?” someone off camera asks before Youngblood answers “Absolutely. Because if you cripple them you have to take care of them for life and that cost goes way up,” he said.
*The video below is a little difficult to hear and may require a louder volume.
The2006 video of Youngblood saying it’s better to kill than wound was released by the Kern County Detention Officers Association, one of three officers’ unions that had endorsed Youngblood’s upcoming election opponent and chief deputy Justin Fleeman.
According to AOL, the video was reportedly taken during an endorsement consideration interview. It also saw Youngblood turn the loss of life at the hands of the police into a matter of dollars and cents. “When a guy makes a bad shoot on somebody and kills them, $3 million dollars and the family goes away,” he said, comparing it to a jailhouse beating where many officers are present.
Youngblood told Bakersfield.com after the video’s release that his words were taken out of context and that he “never inferred that we should shoot to kill.” He added that he wishes he had “used different words.” He was trying, he said, to explain that when a deputy does a bad thing it’s expensive. The money comes out of the county general fund, which provides raises and pays for more deputies.
Youngblood is nothing more than a symptom of the larger problem of the police offering bad services. But the reason the police offer such terrible service is easy to comprehend and explained well in the following video:
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