Friday, July 25, 2008

Just a Thought

I'll preface this by saying that these words come from someone with over two decades in law enforcement, but it just seems that too often, some folks are very quick to toss in some interesting views when commenting on Law Enforcement duties and actions.

In the last few days, there are two great examples of the communities' differing viewpoints on serious issues. Yesterday, the Sierra Madre Police Department attempted warrant service on a man with a "no bail" warrant. The incident rolled into a day long event with the man refusing to come out of his house, commonly referred to a "barricaded suspect". All too often, Law Enforcement, in general, is criticized for actions that are too quick or without avenues of resolution other than force. The SMPD and allied agencies made several attempts to remove this man from the situation and into custody in a timely and safe manner. HE refused. Law Enforcement waited, surrounded and called, and ultimately resolved the issue by use of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department SEB without incident.

That is, after all, the goal of Law Enforcement, to resolve all situations peacefully and without incident. BUT, always prepared to take whatever action is necessary to prevent or respond to actions of the suspect. End result to the Sierra Madre incident was a peaceful resolve with some inconvenience to the neighborhood and yes, a monetary cost to entire community, surrounding agencies and others because of the actions of ONE MAN.

The CrimeScene Blog has run an entry on the use of possible "gang injunctions" in the Monrovia area in response to an "uptick" of violent crime in the last year. Comments run the gamut of extremes from persons on the blog.

Expressing some one's viewpoint is a great asset and right granted to us all. It is too bad that sometimes our viewpoints can cloud the issue and prevent resolutions that are in the best interest of EVERYONE. Everyone is entitled to and has the obligation to speak up. I just wish that that energy could be used to agree to disagree from time to time and concentrate on the ultimate goal. In this instance, that is making our communities as safe as possible while preserving every one's right to co-exist, peacefully.

After all, as a Law Enforcement Officer, I view some of our primary roles in the community as a peace keeper and a problem solver. Law Enforcement is just one aspect of the job these days.

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