Shooter’s widow: Proposed tactic encouraging suicide during deadly Fargo standoff ‘cowardly’
FARGO - Moments after Marcus Schumacher shot Fargo Police Officer Jason Moszer, authorities talked about asking Schumacher to take his own life during negotiations.
After some consideration, they decided against using the tactic.
That tactic, which was part of the BCI's final report, came as a shock to Michelle Schumacher, Marcus’ widow.
"Why would you ever ask someone to kill themselves? I don't care who you are or what you did, I can't imagine doing that," Schumacher said.
Anger, frustration and grief from the widow of Marcus Schumacher when she learned of a possible negotiation method.
"It's like a bully, telling the kid, ‘You're not worth being here, why don't you just go home and kill yourself.’"
Feb. 10 was intense night in north Fargo, with bullets flying through the air. Law enforcement say they were just looking to save lives.
"One of the very many conversations that happened in the command truck was what if we encouraged him to commit suicide to save other people's lives and stop that threat," Fargo Police Chief David Todd said.
Negotiators mulled over the idea and determined they were not properly trained.
"They need to realize they're not God," Schumacher said. "They can't just decide when somebody's time was up. The shooting to stop him, I get that. I have no anger over that. But to tell the other person to do that instead. To me, that's the wrong way to look at it, but it felt cowardly."
Asking a shooter to take their own life is not one of the tactics local negotiators use and police say it will not be put into policy.
"We all agree that is appropriate for our team leaders to discuss every possible option and end every deadly force threat, however, this was not a trained option, so we didn't feel it was an appropriate option," Todd said.
"I just want to make sure that people understand that I'm not condemning anyone, I have no right to do that, I wasn't there,” Schumacher said. “I am condemning the idea of asking someone to end their own life, no matter what the situation is. I think that is just absolutely unethical and ugly and nasty. It's a horrible idea."