Monday, June 01, 2009

Man armed with front-end loader attacks police...and pays the price

It started out as a day like any other...and then the crazy Kentucky redneck put down his banjo and his copy of "Better Trailers and Gardens" and tried to kill several law enforcement officers with a 30,000 lb front end loader.

A Bracken County man was killed after officers said he charged them in a construction vehicle.

The Kentucky State Police said troopers and Bracken County sheriff's deputies were called to a home on the AA Highway near Eden Ridge Road shortly after 9 p.m. after neighbors heard a woman screaming.

When officers arrived, the woman escaped from the home after a brief standoff, and a trooper fired at Robert Bradford as Bradford ran to a barn carrying a gun.

Then, troopers said, Bradford, 50, suddenly came out of the barn holding a gun and driving a 30,000-pound front loader toward them.

Sgt. Brian Bowling said Bradford first struck an unmarked state police cruiser and shoved it over an embankment.

Bowling said that when Bradford backed up and turned the front loader toward troopers and deputies, they opened fire.

Bradford was hit at least once and was pronounced dead a short time later at Meadowview Regional Hospital.

The front loader was brought to the KSP post in Dry Ridge early Monday. Most of the glass on the sides of the cab was shot out, and more than a dozen bullet holes could be counted in the front windshield.

Both right side tires were also flattened by bullets.

The Kentucky State Police could not immediately say if a trooper or deputy shot Bradford.

OK, so it didn't end well for Bradford. His choice. But the important thing is that all of the good guys went home safely to their families, with the possible exception of the poor guy whose cruiser got crushed...he's probably still writing that report.

Bottom line here: a deadly-force threat can come in many forms. It's not just the normal "bad guy with a gun/knife". Vehicles count as deadly force too, especially big car-crushing ones. The police are being criticized right now on the local "comment" pages for being "trigger happy", but most of those comments come from people who have never worn a badge or faced a deadly threat. stupid comments like "they could have shot the tires out" or "all they needed to do was shoot the engine" make about as much sense as the Monday-morning quarterbacks who say that police should just shoot the gun out of a bad guy's hand. (And of course it's always a bad guy who "was just getting his life turned around"...)

Of course, being Kentucky, the people writing to condemn the police officers for doing what Bradford forced them to do are probably related to Bradford...and each other. Like I said--it's Kentucky.

Anyway, the scumbag is taking a dirt-nap and the good guys all survived. I'm satisfied. It's a damn shame that Bradford made the choices he did, but they were his choices, and he paid the consequences. The only tragedy here is that now these officers have to live with the trauma of this incident. But again, that's all on Bradford. Screw him and his inbred hick supporters.


  1. Which reminds me of the disgrace of the LAPD ruling a vehicle trying to strike an officer DOES NOT constitute deadly force... WTF?

    Fortunately my jurisdiction has a better grasp of reality.

  2. Sounds like a policy written by wonks who have never walked the walk.

  3. great blog! Another one you might enjoy:

  4. Apparently, this all started with some kind of domestic problem.. But his biggest mistake was thinking that he could drive a front-end loader at cops..
    Sometimes people just insist on learning their lessons the hard way.. And sometimes the hard way is fatal.. Oh well...

  5. Now, riddle me this, Superman: in instances such as this, you'll hear calls for gun control from gun grabbers. The inbred redneck shouldn't have been allowed a gun, Bradford shouldn't have been able to get a gun so easily, blah, blah, blah, but how many calls will you hear for front-end loader control?

  6. So, He was a domestic abuser, he pointed a gun at police and then he tried to run them over with a piece of construction equipment? Sounds to me like this guy was trying to commit suicide, but was too cowardly to finish the job himself. But, he succeeded. Good riddance.

  7. "...and then the crazy Kentucky redneck put down his banjo and his copy of "Better Trailers and Gardens"..."

    "Of course, being Kentucky..."

    "...are probably related to Bradford...and each other. Like I said--it's Kentucky."

    Yeah - you know so much about Kentucky.

    So, would that mean that *all* of those law enforcement officers - the sheriffs deputies and state troopers - were related to each other and Bradford as well? All of them must be cousin humping, trailer park trash - right. After all it *is* Kentucky.

    It's your blog, so you go right ahead with your smug "better-than-you" attitude. But it says much more about YOU than it says about anyone from Kentucky. And what it says is not good.

    This bit of insulting thoughtlessness really diminished an otherwise great blog. Lagniappe would not be proud.

  8. Anonymous12:17 AM

    After living in KY for 4 years, nothing surprises me in this state. SAVAGES have many faces. They don't think the way normal people live, they live somewhere else in time. Scary............. Glad the good guys won on this one.

  9. We just had another scumbag up here try to kill an officer yesterday. (maybe he is related to this bradford guy) The scumbag used his car in an attempt to run down an officer who was trying to execute an arrest warrant. The officer shot at the man in the vehicle and unfortunately missed, all while trying to jump out of the path of the oncoming vehicle as the driver gunned it toward him.

    And of course, all the anti-cop people are coming out of the woodwork saying cops shouldn't carry guns if they can't learn to shoot and that the officer had no business shooting at a man in a car...blah, blah, blah. All naysayers who know nothing of what it is like to have a moron in a large vehicle gunning directly at you with the intent of killing you. Deadly force equals deadly force. Whether that be from a knife, gun, car, or tractor.

  10. OK, Roy makes a good point. Perhaps I painted with too wide a brush in my condemnation of all persons Kentuckian.

    My thoughts were guided by the comments that I read on a couple of different news forums in which several people who apparently knew Bradford or idolized him for attacking the police posted their poorly-spelled rants for the world to see. Yet they honestly do not represent the entire state of Kentucky. So to those people in Kentucky who are not related to Bradford, I apologize.

    Now Roy, I also have to point out that this blog does contain a fair bit of satire at times, and if snide comments about banjo-picking, living in trailers and inbreeding appear to be better-than-thou, you need only consider that it's being written from some hollow in West Virginia. Come on now... Don't make me send the irony fairy over to explain that joke.

  11. Ha--the irony fairy! That made my day.
    My boyfriend's neighbor has a shirt that reads "Execute cop killers." That about sums it up right there!

  12. Anonymous9:22 AM

    I agree with Nicki,
    It is time for front-end loader control.

  13. I, too, am a Southerner. And I thought the satire was hilarious throughout the post. :)

  14. Okay; apology accepted. This really is a good blog that I try to hit every single day. And I understand irony - note that I made no mention of West Virginia. Mostly, that's because we have a lot more in common than not.

    And please don't misunderstand me. I understand a good "wide brush" put-down. I do it myself sometimes. (I'm always telling other people that I live in the land of the rednecks. But I also point out that I am their king.)

    For what it's worth, I agree that the troopers had the right to use deadly force in this instance. Domestic violence situations sometimes cause ordinary people to go crazy.