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Gun Nut That Killed Three Pittsburgh Cops “Didn’t Like Our (Gun) Rights Being Infringed Upon”

April 4, 2009

A gun nut strikes again, this time killing three police officers in Pittsburgh.

The killer, Poplawski, had feared “the Obama gun ban that’s on the way” and “didn’t like our rights being infringed upon,” said Edward Perkovic, his best friend.


A gunman wearing a bulletproof vest and “lying in wait” opened fire on officers responding to a domestic disturbance call Saturday, killing three of them and turning a quiet Pittsburgh street into a battlefield, police said.

Police Chief Nate Harper said the motive for the shooting isn’t clear, but friends said the gunman recently had been upset about losing his job and feared the Obama administration was poised to ban guns.

Richard Poplawski, 23, met officers at the doorway and shot two of them in the head immediately, Harper said. An officer who tried to help the two also was killed.

Poplawski, armed with an assault rifle and two other guns, then held police at bay for four hours as the fallen officers were left bleeding nearby, their colleagues unable to reach them, according to police and witnesses. More than 100 rounds were fired by the SWAT teams and Poplawski, Harper said.

The three slain officers were Eric Kelly, Stephen Mayhle and Paul Sciullo III. Kelly had been on the force for 14 years, Mayhle and Sciullo for two years each. Another officer, Timothy McManaway, was shot in the hand and a fifth broke his leg on a fence.

Poplawski had gunshot wounds in his legs but was otherwise unharmed because he was wearing a bulletproof vest, Harper said. He was charged with three counts of homicide, aggravated assault and a weapons violation.

The shooting occurred just two weeks after four police officers were fatally shot in Oakland, Calif., in the deadliest day for U.S. law enforcement since Sept. 11, 2001. The officers were the first Pittsburgh city officers to die in the line of duty in 18 years.

  1. GoTimothy permalink
    June 22, 2009 1:32 AM

    In a gunfight, who has a right to claim self defense and denounce the
    other as an armed criminal? If a criminal shoots and kills a armed NRA
    member, he has a right to claim it was self defense and the dead NRA
    member has no was to prove he was the victim.

    If you fear for your life from a armed gun nut, it is your right to
    shoot them. And if the three police officers seen the Gun armed gun
    Nut Richard Poplawski coming at them and shot him, they would be
    alive. I am not the only one who fears for their life from armed gun
    nuts who don’t think guns should be regulated or kept out of the hands
    of the mentally ill.

    Can anyone one give me an explanation of why the NRA is so for our right to bear arms, but so against our right to free speech, that they do not allow comments or video responses on their Youtube propaganda
    videos about our rights?

    The right to bear arms has nothing to do with the NRA blocking legislation meant to make guns safer and keep them out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill. When they block that legislation, they are liable for the persons harmed by their actions. About 30k Americans a year commit suicide by Guns because the NRA blocked legislation that would prevent depressed suicide thoughts people, from having guns, which makes them liable from family lawsuits.

    search youtube for GoTimothy videos on gun nuts.

  2. Thomas J Canton permalink
    April 7, 2009 4:42 PM

    Bloggers rushed to paint this killer as a conservative — presumably one who was clinging to his guns and religion. But the truth is that this guy in Pittsburgh was about as much of a conservative as Stalin was cuddly. He’s a neo-Nazi, a white supremacist and, more importantly, he’s a premeditated killer… (allegedly, of course).

  3. sarah permalink
    April 6, 2009 9:49 AM

    That asshole needs to die I knew those cops and its a shame. My thoughts and prayers are with the families

  4. Marion permalink
    April 6, 2009 8:11 AM

    He had so many guns in cellar because he said the cops cannot protect us and we, as citizens need to be armed. He and his Mom were having an argument about the dog urinating on floor and she told him to get out and he wouldn’t prompting her to call 911 to evict him. 2 cops showed up and she turned around and he was behind her with rifle and shot the 2 cops. an off duty cop heard the shots and came to help and was also shot. Kid, 23yrs. , also had an illegal flack vest on.

  5. Keith Schmitz permalink
    April 5, 2009 5:16 PM

    That’s true Michael. There are a lot of people in this country with a psychological dependance on guns. LIke all addicts, they crave them so much that the will vote against the interest of themselves and their families because they think they have to have more and more. Maybe a rehab program will help.

  6. April 5, 2009 3:04 PM

    There is some related discussion going on here.

  7. Michael J. Cheaney permalink
    April 5, 2009 10:59 AM

    I can’t wait to see what mental illness he is diagnosed with…..

    Schizophrenia perhaps?

    Lets go with your complete and total gun ban……

    How exactly does this get enforced?

    PEOPLE would be the ones who would turn in the existing guns…..

    Borders would (theoretically) have to be locked down to prevent guns coming in from other countries.

    Gun Manufacturers would (theoretically) have to banned from making,producing, or selling their product in the United States. So there would have to be a enforcement mechanism in place.

    Prohibition -as the past has taught us- Worked so wonderfully for drugs and alcohol…..why not extend it to guns as well…..oh wait it DIDN’T work….maybe the 3rd times the charm?

  8. April 4, 2009 11:13 PM

    ahhh….the guys who were killed were cops with guns and knew how to use them….more than a fighting chance I would argue, and yet dead due to gun violence.

    I think your argument about bats, cars, etc is so old and useless it does not deserve additional thought.

    I know it is hard to admit for a segment of the nation but guns DO need to be controlled.

  9. 2ndammendment permalink
    April 4, 2009 9:51 PM

    This is a terrible tragedy of course, as are all of these shooting deaths. Next to come is the outcry for more Gun Control to keep the “gun nuts” at bay. Im interested in, did the guy buy his guns legally, did he have a psych record, if the answers are yes and no respectively, quite frankly no law on the books could protect anyone from this man, he just snapped. Had he not have had a gun, he would have ran over someone in his car, beat someone to death with a bat or something. People kill folks, they always have, read some history, killing has been going on for thousands of years, it is in our nature as human beings. It happened before guns were even invented, and it will go on long after the crazy left takes them away, take a look at australia, guns banned, increase in murder and crime almost overnight.
    While tragic, it will always happen, guns or not. I personally want at least a fighting chance to protect myself and my family against the people who will always have the guns regardless of laws, the criminals.

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