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911 call: Ex-Marine was 'going crazy' before shooting

Posted September 29, 2008
Updated October 8, 2008

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— A Cary man whom a police officer shot had been drinking and threatening to kill himself when his fiancée called for help, according to a 911 call released Monday.

James Cummings, 31, was shot early Sunday morning at a residence on Dundalk Way after officers responded to the distress call.

According to Cummings' family, Cummings was shot in the abdomen and is on life support. He was listed in critical condition Monday afternoon.

"My fiancé is going crazy. I think he's going to try to kill himself," the unidentified female caller tells the 911 dispatcher in the four-minute recording. "He's screaming that he hates himself and wants to die, and he's hitting himself in the head."

The caller goes on to tell the operator that her roommate and one of his friends were trying to hold him down to keep him from hurting himself.

When police arrived at the home, Cummings picked up a BB gun, which might have led to the shooting, his father, James Cummings Sr., said.

He said his son, a former Marine, was mentally ill and suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder.

Cary police, however, have not released any information about the shooting, including the officer involved, but Town of Cary spokeswoman Susan Moran said Monday that he is on administrative duty pending the conclusion of internal and external examinations.

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

58 Comments

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  • blackdwg32 Oct 2, 2008

    Headly Lamar, you too shouldnt cast stones, until you walk in the shoes of a police officer. You can watch all the tv shows you want but until you experience watching life and death pass before your eyes you can not pass judgement and group all officers. Funny all walks can pass judgement arm chair qb police, but only a few sign up to do the job, and these are the same men/women that are going to come to your home (w/o prejudged opinions) and help you as your screaming,crying in the phone for help, because you cant. Even after all the cop shows you watch....

  • Adelinthe Sep 30, 2008

    "There is no such thing as an "EX MARINE."

    Nope!!!

    There are Former Marines, but once a Marine, always a Marine; and that's because the training never ever leaves you - and some of that's good and some of it's bad.

    Praying for this Marine, wounded in so many ways.

    God bless.

    Rev. RB

    USMC Sergeant

    '69-72

    SEMPER FI!!!

  • Adelinthe Sep 30, 2008

    "According to Cummings' family, Cummings was shot in the abdomen and is on life support. He was listed in critical condition Monday afternoon."

    Ok, I understand why the cop had to shoot, but isn't it protocol to either wound by shooting in the arm or leg, or to shoot to kill when necessary by aiming for the chest or head?

    So why was this guy shot in the stomach???

    Praying for him.

    God bless.

    Rev. RB

  • Tater Salad Sep 30, 2008

    Hey LEO NC, I noticed you like to "defend" EVERY brother in blue without knowing him/her personally, but you fail to show up and tuck your tail on articles like this:

    On September 25, 2007, the then-Captain of Internal Affairs (of the almighty NCSHP) was transferred to another division after it was discovered that he had allegedly allowed a subordinate to investigate an accident involving the Captain’s patrol car. The police report of the investigation was revised to reflect that the Captain was partly at fault only after questions were raised about the initial report.

    Just curious why your chest pokes out now and not when the truth is revealed - that the people you trust are people and can't be trusted because they hold a shiny, stated paid for piece of gold?

  • leo-nc Sep 30, 2008

    "I agree with all of your points, except for one. Law enforcement officers aren't taught to shoot to kill. They are trained to shoot (and that is the LAST thing any officer wants to do) to stop someone from taking the threatening actions that person is taking. No officer wants to kill another person."---

    We're not? That's news to me

  • blackdog Sep 30, 2008

    ...tragic irony.... His family called to get him help so he wouldn't hurt himself. So, the ones who came to help....shot him.

  • Tater Salad Sep 30, 2008

    the federal statistic for cops shooting a person vs. a standard citizen shooting a person show that cops are less likely to hit their target in the first place

    What do you expect from people with GEDs? It doesn't take a rocket scientist to pass BLET!! (just ask my boss, he passed it and said it was ten times easier than his 4 year college degree)

  • Common Sense Man Sep 30, 2008

    "Are cops at all trained of areas where they could shoot a person at close range where the injury will not be fatal?"

    Uhhhhhhh, errrrrrrrr, ummmmmmmm, NO.

  • SouthernLady05 Sep 30, 2008

    " Law enforcement officers aren't taught to shoot to kill. They are trained to shoot (and that is the LAST thing any officer wants to do) to stop someone from taking the threatening actions that person is taking. No officer wants to kill another person."-ssi

    Agreed, no officer wants to kill anyone. BUT officers are taught that when they shoot, its center mass. There is no warning shot, no 'just to injure' shot. No one wants to do it, but thats how they are taught.

  • freedomrings Sep 30, 2008

    Prayers for the ex-marine and his family. So many prayers for them.

    Prayers for the police officer and his family.

    They're both heroes. God Bless Them Both for serving our community and country.

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