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Former Marine hospitalized after being shot by Cary officer

Posted September 28, 2008
Updated September 29, 2008

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— A former Marine is in critical condition after being shot by a Cary police officer early Sunday.

A resident of a home at 202 Dundalk Way called 911 at 4:51 a.m. and said that a 31-year-old man was in distress, Capt. Michael Williams, with the Cary Police Department, said.

Williams said that while responding, officers had to resort to force, and one officer shot the man.

According to family, the victim is James Cummings.

Cummings' fiance said she called police because Cummings threatened to hurt himself.

According to Cummings' father, his son had been drinking alcohol and is mentally ill. He is a former Marine and suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder.

When police arrived, Cummings picked up a BB gun which may have led to the shooting, the father said.

"I think it's uncalled for, it's unjustified. These officers, I know they have been trained what to do in situations like this, especially when they were told prior to arriving of his condition. It’s very hard on the family right now,” James Cummings Sr. said.

Cummings was listed in critical condition Sunday evening at WakeMed. The family said he was shot in the abdomen and is on life support.

Williams could not say how many times the victim was shot or how many times the officer fired his weapon.

The name of the officer was withheld Sunday.

The State Bureau of Investigation has been called in to review the incident, following standard protocol for any officer-related shooting.

58 Comments

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  • iceman41980 Sep 29, 2008

    Mrs Pig. I suggest you stay off here until you are a police officer like your husband. Then you will have a ligitimate opinion. Until then, stay home and keep reading your "How to make you LEO husband happy."

  • Mrs Pig - Sassy Cowgirl Sep 29, 2008

    lyonsdavid - go line up with your alterego iceman. Liars should stick together, you know nothing.

  • lyonsdavid42 Sep 29, 2008

    I completely agree with Iceman!!!You guys are absolutely hilarious. Guess what? I am a police officer, and not your average pull someone over and give you a ticket officer either. So until you have a little experience, lets say 17 years, then you can have an opinion!!!!!!!!!! If you are a cops wife! stay off here....stop trying to defend officers that don't act according to regulations!!!!if you are someone who is just trying to ruffle some feathers well stay off as well. This is for serious opinions. I know more about the situation than anyone on here and will tell you that these officers did not handle the situation properly. Point me out and say whatever you want, my opinion stands as a fellow officer that they were not justified. When you know more facts than just what WRAL posts then we can talk. until then.... Your opinions about the current news don't matter. THANKS!

  • Mrs Pig - Sassy Cowgirl Sep 29, 2008

    iceman41980 - it is obvious that your family may be in law enforcement but you sure as heck are not. Paramedics will not and cannot go near a violent man it falls to cops to control the situation so paramedics can come in. NO WHERE does it say that the family knew it was a BB gun and told them that. The Dad was not there - just when the guy was drinking booze to go with his drugs for his mental problems. This man was a danger to himself and those around him and NEVER should have been allowed to drink.

  • The Dude Sep 29, 2008

    Nowhere in this story does it say the family told the officers it was a BB gun. Besides, officers aren't going to take anyone's word for it until the guy is no longer in possession of it and not threatening them with it. Your law enforcement sources (probably made up) are wrong. We don't go to a report of a mentally unstable person with EMS. EMS won't go near that person until they are under the control of responding officers. Good light or poor light, BB guns are not always readily identifiable as such. THAT IS A FACT! I will post on here and defend this cop all I want. If the guy was unstable and point a weapon (or fake one) at a cop the cops responded correctly. These guys will be cleared and back to work rather quickly. You can tell your FBI family to go back and learn their officer safety. Too much time behind a desk chasing computer hackers has left them with no street sense. So why don't you stay off of this board!!!!!!!

  • ccacrabbitdog Sep 29, 2008

    hey iceman, find a brain......don't say they were wrong without knowing the "facts"......the facts that matter is he had a gun(doesn't matter what type) bang he's no longer a threat......

  • iceman41980 Sep 29, 2008

    AND! why would the family let him have access to a REAL firearm??! he has PTSD give them a little more credit than that. SO FOR ALL OF YOU POSTING AGAINST MR. CUMMINGS AND TRYING TO JUSTIFYING THESE OFFICERS ACTIONS.........FIND A HOBBY. Dont get on here anymore posting about how what you think what they did was right when you don't know any facts.....NONE!!!! Coming from experienced law enforcement........THEY WERE NOT JUSTIFIED TO USE LETHAL FORCE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • iceman41980 Sep 29, 2008

    Well let me start by saying that I am part of a law enforcement family. My father is in the FBI and many others in my family are in or closely tied to law enforcement. All of you who come on this blog to post that you thing he deserved it orrrr that he the officer was justified in firing his weapon....Stay off this blog. You obviously have no idea what you are talking about. Officers, such as the ones in my family, are trained to treat certain situations with caution. IN THIS SITUATION, the officers were made aware of Mr. Cummings condition and still proceeded to deal with it themselves before waiting for paramedics in case of injury. Two..... the next person that gets on here and says you couldnt tell if it was a BB gun or not?!?!?! The family told the officers it was a BB gun and they were completely aware of that. And it happened inside the residents so it isn't like they were in the middle of the woods tracking Mr. Cummings down! ( see next comment)

  • webberx101 Sep 29, 2008

    May the Lord spare this unfortunate man...

    Before you call the Police. Intervene yourself and, if you must, call a neighbor, family member, pastor, or passer-by first.

  • TheAdmiral Sep 29, 2008

    For anyone to say that the cop should not have shot - your wrong. You have never had to decide if something was a real or fake gun in your life, and you never will. So stop with your couch potato second hand opinions.

    Go about your business since you obviously don't know a law enforcement officers.

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