The grand jury did not intend to indict Christopher Long for second-degree murder in connection with the botcher raid the former sheriff’s deputy participated in on December 1. Long fired through a closed door, striking and killing Peyton Strickland.

The official story is that the jury foreman marked the wrong box on the bill of indictment. Was it a butter-fly bill?

This is bizarre. This is absolute and total banana republic stuff here. Nothing about this incident has made much sense and now this.

But here is something you can bank on: North Carolina has far, far too many heavily armed law enforcement officers out interacting with the public in needlessly dangerous ways. The full tactical kit, Kevlar helmets, body armor, and fully automatic weapons need to be reserved for actual tactical situations, not trotted out merely to justify the budgetary expense at every opportunity.

Common sense and sound judgment remain any officer’s best weapons.