Miami Cannibal Rudy Eugene: Did The Cops Really Need To Shoot This Guy?

poppo.jpg
Ronald Poppo had much of his face eaten off by a naked, unarmed cannibal. Poppo is in critical condition, but is expected to survive. The naked cannibal went down in a fatal "hail" of police bullets.
Yesterday, we published some pretty horrific photos that supposedly are of the "face" of "Miami Zombie" victim Ronald Poppo. They are, quite frankly, some of the most vomit-inducing images we've ever seen.

Poppo is in critical condition and is reportedly expected to survive -- despite having much of his face gnawed off during the 18-minute cannibalistic attack that conspiracy theorists already are claiming is the latest sign of the "zombie apocalypse."

As for alleged cannibal Rudy Eugene -- who has since become the poster-boy for the anti-bath salts campaign (while it hasn't been confirmed, "experts" suspect Eugene was under the influence of bath salts during the attack) -- he's dead as a door nail, fatally shot in a "hail" of police bullets.

Various local media reports describe the shooting as follows: cops show up and find Eugene eating Poppo's face. They tell him to stop. He does (sort of -- more on that below). Bang, bang, bang -- Eugene's dead.

Eugene, mind you, was completely naked at the time, and completely unarmed.

Trust us, we realize that suggesting anyone was out of line to shoot a man who is literally eating another man's face is a hard sell. But the fact remains: the cops shot an unarmed man.

As we've chronicled, cops love Tasers -- sometimes a little too much. Seems like a naked, unarmed man chewing on another guy's face might be the opportune time to whip out the "non-deadly force" -- or a boot to the face, or a baton to the skull, etc. But -- according to local media accounts -- that didn't happen; the officers told him to stop and then fired.

It could be argued that the officers noticed that Eugene was potentially taking another man's life (which he'd been doing for nearly 18 minutes before they showed up), and used deadly force to save Poppo. An eye-witness account, however, describes the interaction Eugene had with the officers as follows: "The guy just stood, his head up like that, with pieces of flesh in his mouth. And he growled." Then police started shooting.

The whole growling and chewing flesh thing aside, Eugene was no longer attacking Poppo when police shot him, according to the eyewitness, and was no longer a threat that couldn't be handled non-fatally by well-trained law enforcement officers.

We're somewhat on the fence here -- we're no fans of cannibals, but we're also not fans of cops shooting people who don't need to be shot.

We want to know what you think, though: did the cops really need to shoot Eugene?

Cast your vote below.




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161 comments
Dafuq
Dafuq

I couldn't even believe it but damn ! Poor Mr.Poppo , I support his funds ! That guy was cruel and he was in college , he could've gone to Mcdonalds or something ! It's just a freaking dollar , it's that or being shot and arrested !

BRENT MULLEN
BRENT MULLEN

Everybody wants to sue. I hope the officer who shot Euegene is a hero. If that was your son being eaten by a thug,You would except the same. Poor Mr Poppo he is a human being who has to go threw life looking like he does now.Nobody deserves what happened to Ronald P. I personally dont give a damn about people stating how Eugene was a good person & how he didnt deserve to die.Mr Poppo was just a innocent  man who was at the wrong place at the wrong time. I contributed to Mr Poppos fund & I hope you do to. Thanks

Shauncallan
Shauncallan

But humans eat chickens, cows, etc and that is not sick to you

Nici McVey
Nici McVey

and dont tell me everyone does stuff like that i know that myself

Nici McVey
Nici McVey

i've been living in germany since age 5 but srsly do you fellow americans have to pump every shit into your body just cause you cant drink from 16 like here? ^^ 

Sam
Sam

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Hammer117
Hammer117

I would have shot because that situation was probably scary as hell. All of the officers were probably in shock, and frankly, probably weren't trained to handle this situation. And you must also take into account the "Zombie" movies that we all see. Fear is a hell of a motivator.

Rachael23
Rachael23

 Anyyyyyone who thinks that he shouldn't have been shot is absoloutley RIDICULOUS

Dontootifrooti
Dontootifrooti

Seriously, if i came across a man eating another mans face, totaly naked, growling with flesh all in his mouth, i'd shoot the bastard. this is one very unique an terrifying situation to find yourself in, you can't say you wouldn't panic n just blow him away.

Lauran262
Lauran262

I'm not a huge fan of the police in this country but if some crazed drug addict was going to town on my face then yeah shoot the dude!!

Libtatum03
Libtatum03

I think I've decided that I'm not a fan of the VV.  This article takes such a whimsical and flippant tone, completely desensitizing the entire gruesome issue.  While it's a completely valid question of whether the cops were right in shooting him, I find this article disrespectful to the victim and the dead.  (And on that note, perhaps they should have shot to injure, rather than to kill.  But had I been in the situation and seen a man relentlessly eating another, I probably would have shot to kill, too).  Anyhow, I respect the creativity and humor of the author, but perhaps I should stick to reading the Times.

Xmorganaxbananax
Xmorganaxbananax

um he was armed...with his fucking teeth, causing unimaginable pain to another human being.  the cops were absolutly right to shoot him. HE WAS EATING ANOTHER PERSON! I can't even believe people are questioning whether or not it was ok to shoot this guy...of course it was, he's a cannibal, he was eating the face of a person who was still alive. I'm glad that fucks dead, and i hope the victim recovers as best as he possibly can, and I really hope he isn't just put back onto the street. I don't care how messed up on drugs, or how crazy this guy was, he deserved to die. eating people just isn't cool.

Santana
Santana

Mkaee well the way I feel; the guy shouldn't be judged by wut he did when no one really knows wut really happened. But I deffently wouldn't have shot him with out first trying to obtain him. People don't just eat others peoples face off....especially in the middle of miami....NAKED!

sf
sf

WTF of course shoot him!!!!!!!! The police did the right thing. They should have only not shot if the piece of shit was eating a Village Voice writer.

Nataliina
Nataliina

I don't think the cops had much choice. I mean, how disturbed would YOU be if you saw that? Any human would be so bothered by that scene that they would probably react the same way. It's possibly the most scarring thing those cops have probably seen, and their instincts took over. I can't blame them. 

Grasshopper50
Grasshopper50

Besides the sheer stupidity of even proposing that the cop acted wrong in shooting the attacker, lets look at your base argument.

You say that when the subject was no longer attacking the victim he was no longer a threat. Bullshit!

The cop is looking at the eaten face of a man and massive bleeding from a safe distance. He can't totally assess the damage or tell whether there is enough injury present that bleeding out is an imminent threat or not. However, based on what he could see he HAD to assume that it was a possibility. If a man growls and hovers over his "kill" / food / whatever you want to call the victim in this situation, it is a display of intent to do harm to anyone who comes near and to keep the cop away, which means keeping help away. A police officer must stop the threat of further injury that the man presents simply by standing in the way of bringing immediate medical treatment to the victim.

A taser may or may not have worked on someone that demented and / or high on drugs. And legally, if someone is using deadly force you are justified in using deadly force to stop the threat - period. Police and even citizens in a self defense situation are not required by law to use less force than what the attacker is using.

And, no, a cop does not have to place himself in serious harm's way by trying to go hands on or use a baton on someone who is a deadly force threat. You use the reasonable amount of force necessary to stop the threat SAFELY.

So, please go study your Use of Force law better before you make such idiotic comments. I assume you get paid to write these articles. Try doing your research to do your job the right way.

delmonts.com
delmonts.com

i'm not a big fan or zombie either, but just like the article stated, he shouldn't have been shot.. taser would of been very helpful in this case here.. i'm not going to say it's racism that he was shot.. but whatever it was, it's never up to us to shoot and kill anybody unless of course we're the one who's being attack or playing self defense. the question i ask is out of all the options the police had, why'd he choose to kill? i think him being alive would of gave us a better chance of understanding why it happened in the first place... @DELMONTS.COM

Carla Meridith
Carla Meridith

The police were 100% justified. They were stopping a threat. They did not shoot a man. They shot a S A V A G E.

Pretty Piscesgirl
Pretty Piscesgirl

Makes a safer society knowing he will not "go off" on someone the next time he might decide to take bath salts.  I don't feel sorry for the dead guy and think it's high time we stop paying taxes to feed people like him.

Tjdonovan85
Tjdonovan85

Shoot him I would have fucking zombies man killem all

HobosRule<3
HobosRule<3

Psh no . Don't shoot him . Just nicely ask him to stop . That way he can go and eat their face ... It's better than eating a hobo at least ... >.<

Kayleigh
Kayleigh

When you see a guy munching on another guys face are you really going to start thinking about the cannibals human rights!? Or how you should ethically get him to stop eating another mans flesh!? Hell no! Take that mother f**ker down...does it matter how!? He didn't care if his victim lived or died, and he's injured and mutilated him in one of the worst, inhuman ways! He deserved to be shot. How anyone can say the police were in the wrong is beyond me.

Rturner79
Rturner79

See a zombie.  Shoot a zombie.  Don't tase a zombie.  That just doesn't work.  Haven't you seen The Walking Dead?  Jeesh.   Get a clue.

Verriitas
Verriitas

There was a non-fatal shot fired and it didn't effect him at all.  What stop people who are shot is the shock and heat from the bullet, this guy was already burning inside, which is why he had taken off his clothes. A taser wouldn't have stopped him. This guy needed to be stopped any way possible before he hurt someone else. And you also can't be a "well-trained law enforcement officer" when you come across a human eating another human, blood covering his face, flesh still in his mouth, no can be prepared for that. Even if the officer acted out of complete shock, I don't blame him.

Statewrestler21
Statewrestler21

id like to point out that some of you are protecting a naked drug addict cannibal who was violent even before the incident. youre thinking about how his family will sue even though theres a man in critical condition fighting for his life and you are questioning whether deadly force was needed. these same cops dealed with bath salts user 2 weeks prior and it took 3 tasers and 15 cops to restrain the subject, and he still managed to steal a baton and hurt an officer. Never judge someone on their profession espeically a cop. theyre here to help.

Lawrencelanier
Lawrencelanier

I wouldn't because I don't do drugs, but if I did, and gnawed a man's face off, I would want the cops to shoot me.  I don't know how a person, once sober, would be able to deal with having been in such a state and eaten someone's face.  

bereal
bereal

also sorry king- its a HUGE stretch to say he "didn't need to be shot." If you or someone you loved was in poppo's situation, you' be singing a different tune.

bereal
bereal

Cops have been getting a bad rap lately, much of it deserved, but in this instance i think its pretty absurd to imply the cop was some sort of trigger-happy power-abusing jerk. He is a human being as well, with very little time to make a quick decision, while no doubt in shock at witnessing such a bizarre, grotesque and disturbing thing. give the guy i break, he had seconds to make a lightening quick decision and chose to save the life of the defenseless victim.

Bosorio06
Bosorio06

omg are u guys serious he was eating a homless guy. what were they going to do pull him off? if u were a cop and saw a crazy guy on drugs eating another person would u pull him off or ahoot the guy?

benw_hooah
benw_hooah

Is it really a question? The man is in critical condition meaning he may not live. His life and face will never be the same. Eugene was crazed and willing to eat a mans face, do you want to try and and put hand coughs on him? At that point Eugene had showed he was willing to kill therefore the cop has not reason at all not to shoot. Think if you were in the cops shoes. Honestly, at that point, its like running into a bear that eating a man, you shoot it. No questions asked.

Beverly
Beverly

Asswipes! Of COURSE they should have shot the cannibal dead. I can't believe anyone is even questioning this. Cops called him off - he growled and continued on. Glad the bastard is dead in his tracks. Hope he rots in burning hell!

Darcymimetz
Darcymimetz

uhhh YEAH THEY NEEDED TO SHOOT THAT FREAK!!... he may not have been armed but he was using his MOUTH to harm.. and who knows maybe even kill this poor guy!!.. an bath salts!?? wtf!??? what the f were these guys even doing!?? my God!!

Fipper
Fipper

They did him a favor. He wouldn't be able to live with himself when he comes to and realized what he'd done.

kathy pease
kathy pease

Too bad the Zombie wasn't partying with Casey Anthony!

Michijo
Michijo

Well, you know in Doctor Who once, the Doctor had the opportunity to go back in time and kill the Daleks before they ever came into being.  At the last minute though, he couldnt do it, the reasoning being that he wasnt sure if killing them would allow a greater evil into the universe. This is also the Hitler argument. The idea that as evil as Hitler was, you never know if he didnt accidentally prevent a greater evil. Going back in time and killing him might cause a greater evil into being. You just never know. Also, here it would be interesting to have had an interview with someone who actually ate another man's face off. Or is this so messed up that you cannot live after doing something so randomly foul? It's clear the man was on crack, as people always want to get naked after smoking crack.

EndZombieismDotCom
EndZombieismDotCom

Yes, it was necessary.  I think officers should be trained to shoot to kill when faced with a human eating another human alive.  He was indeed armed with at least his deadly gnashing teeth and possibly seemingly superhuman capabilities.  Depending on what drug he was on (if on one), he might not have  been able to feel pain, and his adrenaline and psyche could have been in an enhanced state.  A tazer likely wouldn't work.  Regardless, he was eating a living mans face and indeed in the process of killing the man and was not stopping at the officers command.  Thanks to the officers' quick decision, we won't have to worry about exhausting too many resources on trials and what not.  That being said, I don't think the cops need to go about being all trigger happy.  Just don't hold back when you see people eating living victims.  Cheers!  

mishyboux
mishyboux

I would have found it very interesting to do some psychological/psychiatric tests on this guy while he was on death row, so yes I think if I was a police officer at the scene I would have tried my best to subdue the attacker and rescue the victim as much as possible, if not, yeah, 12 bullets would do it!!!!!!!

Dan
Dan

there is no ground to stand on for his family to even attempt to sue law enforcement. if you think rudy eugene didn't need to be killed you're sick. look at the pictures of the victim and tell me that the person who did that to him deserved to live. the police will not be punished for their actions, they did as they should. as far as i'm concerned, he was armed enough to completely destroy a man's face and ruin his life. he should burn in hell

JamesKingSucks
JamesKingSucks

I find it appalling that even an extraordinarily misguided, dyed-in-the-wool liberal from the Village Voice would have the audacity to assert such nonsense. That POS was in the process of killing an innocent human being in an unimaginably violent way, and you blame the cops for shooting him to death? This drugged-out, worthless bastard completely ruined the victim's life. I wish the perp would have been killed in a more severe manner (like disembowelment, for example); a punishment more befitting of someone as sadistic as he was. James King, I sincerely hope that grave misfortune befalls you, and very soon. It will be appropriate karma for someone who is so insensitive, uncaring, and soulless. 

Lou
Lou

 The police are sick and tired of constantly seeing the trash they arrest being released by the justice system, perhaps this subconsciously contributed to the decision to shoot.  The police unlike the general public understand that tasers and other non lethal force are often ineffective on drugged felons.  I would have emptied my gun into the animal and reloaded and emptied it again.  The fatal shooting probably saved the state millions of dollars.

ZD8810
ZD8810

Are you F***ing kidding me? The guy was EATING the other man's face off. YES they should have shot him unarmed or not. And if you read the full story you would know that they first shot him with a non fatal bullet, after which he CONTINUED tearing the man's face apart. You think if a bullet didn't stop him at first a taser would?! WOW

Luna00046
Luna00046

Of course shoot him, what the heck I'm all for being liberal and all at times, but come on now if you see a guy with flesh all over his face, eating another man's face off, you ask him to stop and he growls on you..what are you supposed to do get close to him, pat him on the back and say "hey dude come on, don't do that, stop" as if they are going to and trust that he will stop, growl growl. I'd shoot too in this case i I were the officer.

Gil
Gil

Eugene must have been coming from the local convenient store after purchasing a bag of skittles and ariZona ice tea before going ape shit and being fatally shot by the man. He wasn't doing absolutely anything wrong other than simply beating the shit out of another man and eating his fucking face.

Only an insane piece of shit would object fatally shooting this

Michijo
Michijo

Miami is screwed up anyway. It only confirms what I already know. Frankly that guy Poppo looks like he had been walking in the sun a lot and perhaps it cooked his face. Maybe the smelled of freshly cooked face was just like McDonalds-smell. Eugene wasnt on bath salts at all, but had been smoking potent marijuana. He had to eat immediately. Was it bad that he was shot? I say, why not shoot someone eating someone else's face. After all, we are in the USA and gun-nuts. We might as well live up to our reputation.

Cranky
Cranky

Having been in a major fire dept which also runs ems, I can tell you that anyone hopped up on drugs such as pcp transforms themselves into a raging wild animal.  Seeing 5 cops and 2 paramedics  needed to stop a pcp patient that broke the straps on his gurney, another that literally ripped the door off of a car, the only way to save the life of the other man was to shoot him.  Tasers do not effect those in a drug induced mania.  The cop's responsibility was to save the life of the victim.  Had Mr. Eugene not decided to drug himself to an uncontrollable state, he would not laying on a coroners table waiting to be disected, and Mr Poppo would not be in the condition he is in. I think the officer is to be commended for making the right decision to stop the carnage then.  Believe it or not, having to kill another human being is a very hard thing to live with, no matter how justified the reason. 

OpinionatedChick
OpinionatedChick

Wow. If you were a cop, you would've done the same thing. You're not going to walk up to a man who is eating another man's face off and taze him or do anything that could get you killed or injured. If you were that cop, you probably would've been too scared to even pull the trigger, let alone go near the guy. There was no way the officer could have subdued him safely. 

Tasteslikeink
Tasteslikeink

It's ppl like u that are going to start the zbie apocalypse because you wanna try and help the guy eating someone's arm. That's how you get bit!!! You're one of the first to go bro!

Caliebthomas
Caliebthomas

hello hello can any one tell me if santa is from the  north or south pole

liliou
liliou

come on don't wish something like that to anybody, what this guy did is not human..shudder.

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