The Cancer We Face, And Why We Continue

More from the anonymous Sacramento Deputy who has written a few things here in the past.

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I’ve been a cop for 22 years this month.  I remember pretty vividly my academy days, and how I dreamt of one day being a cop.  I remember jail training very clearly, as I also remember the several years I spent working there.  I remember patrol training, and I remember my first day as a finalized, brand new patrol cop, September 11, 2001.

I remember the men and women I have worked with over the years.  I remember the feelings I have had toward them, the brotherhood, the family.  I even remember working with a few people that I did not like, in fact there were a couple at one point or another that I despised.  But if they called for help, no matter who they were, no matter if I liked them or not, without question, doubt or hesitation, I went, as did everyone else, because that is what we do.

I remember the very first funeral I attended for a fallen deputy from my department.  I remember listening to her teenage daughter talking about her mom, and how she was going to miss her.  I remember sitting there in that church, crying, in my dress uniform, wondering how the daughter managed to stay as composed as she was, while I sat there trying to hide the tears on my cheeks.

I remember every single “officer down” call I was ever on, even those from other local agencies.

I remember that gut wrenching feeling you get when you hear those dreaded words on the radio, “shots fired, officer down!”  I remember wondering why in the hell my car would not go any faster.

In fact, I blew up two different cars responding to officers who were shot.  Both cars suffered a crack in the intake manifold.  How in the hell do you crack an intake manifold?  I have no idea, but I’ve done it, twice.  One of those cops survived, the other did not, leaving behind his three children.

I remember sitting at home with my eldest son, who was barely 3 at the time, when I got a call from a close friend and coworker telling me that two of my coworkers were dead and another was in a coma.  I remember the helpless, useless feeling that day.  I remember sitting on the couch, hugging my son and crying while watching the news coverage.  I remember being angry at God for what happened, even though I know it was not his fault.

Over the next several years, I would lose more coworkers to both accidents and murders.  And each one took a chunk of me with them.

I again got to experience that same helpless, useless feeling four years ago as I listened to the radio from home as my coworkers hunted a man who had just murdered another coworker.  As I listened, the same scumbag murdered a deputy from a neighboring department while he fled from mine.  I listened, unable to do anything, wishing I could be there to help, needing to be there to help, but stuck.

Just barely three years after that, as I got into the car leaving lunch, I heard those dreaded words on the radio, “officers down, multiple officers with gunshot wounds.”  My partner and I drove to the scene and while I was of little actual help, being there with my family in blue, made that scene a little easier to handle, until I learned that the man most seriously wounded was a man I went to the academy with, and he had just died.

As a man, as a cop, I was always under the impression that I am not supposed to cry.  As a human, I am a big bowl of mush and have always been on the emotional side.  So now, I’m doing what I can to choke back the tears.  I need to stay busy, give me something to do.  The tears can wait until I get home, and they did, thankfully.

I can remember just about every service from every cop funeral I have been to.  And to this day, thinking about them makes me emotional.

They add up.  The grief doesn’t go away.  It is cumulative.  The hole continues to grow, like a malignant cancer.

Just when you think your soul is starting to mend, another cop gets killed.  The cancer comes out of remission and hits you full force.  The pain is so strong, it feels like not a day has gone by since the last one.

Here I am, barely one year since I buried my academy classmate, and I am polishing up my badge and leather gear, making sure my Class A uniform is clean and pressed, finding my hat that only gets worn for funerals, so I can go bury yet another coworker.

In the academy, they told us to always take care of number one, and you are number one.  They told us to exercise, eat right, and live healthy, that way we would make it through our career in good physical condition so we could enjoy the retirement we earned.  However, little was done to prepare us for the constant emotional drain, or the loss of your friend and coworker, your family member.  I mean, in reality, how do you prepare someone for that?  Especially when it happens with such frequency.

A friend of mine whom I’ve come to know only recently wrote this piece just before he retired one year ago.  In it, he talks about all the cops that were killed during his career.  It is sobering, and sad.  During his 29 year career, 4,122 cops died in the line of duty.

4,122!

That is too many.

I don’t know how I am going to make it through this funeral coming up, but I will.  We will.  I owe it to my blue family to be there, and not just for the fallen, but for all of those who must carry on.  We need each other to lean on, for support and strength, and for understanding.

It reminds me of a line from the movie Blackhawk Down.  “When I go home, people ask me, ‘Hey Hoot, why do you do it, man? Why? You some kind of war junkie?’  I won’t say a goddamn word. Why? They won’t understand. They won’t understand why we do it. They won’t understand it’s about the men next to you… and that’s it. That’s all it is.”

Society doesn’t understand cops.  Some fear us, some resent us, some hate us, and still there are some who love us, but none of them understands us.  Hell, for many of us, our own families don’t understand us.  The only people who truly understand cops, are cops.  We are here for each other, always.  We find strength in each other.  And we will once again find the strength to bury our fallen brother, knowing that as we bury him, we bury a little bit of ourselves.  After that, we will carry on, watching each other’s backs, supporting each other, understanding each other, being there for each other, because if we don’t, who will?

We also know that we will sometime in the future, hopefully not soon, but eventually, be burying yet another member of our blue family, and another.

A couple days ago, I was ready to throw in the towel and walk away.  I was hurt and angry.  A coworker of mine, a friend from my academy days, reached out to me, knowing I was hurting, and sent me something that really hit home.  With his permission, I am going to share his words here, and end this post with his words to me.  For those others who might be wavering like I was, this may help.

“I wanted to say something encouraging, but words are failing right now. The constant drum beat of our fallen brothers and sisters is echoing in my heart tonight and it HURTS!

Like you, I’ve shed tears for a kid I didn’t know, but we do know him, don’t we, even if we’ve never met because we are him, just further along the trail.

I cling to the belief that what we do is a noble calling, that we truly stand between that animal and citizens who are just trying to live their lives. That, along with my faith in Christ, is what sustains me.

I got home today and hugged my wife, and knowing that there is a family tonight which is shattered…and I cried for them, I cried for those in our blue family who knew Mark and are broken, I cried selfish tears because, I too am exhausted by the toll the last 22 years have taken.

And tomorrow I will strap on my gun and badge, I will do my duty and be thankful that I serve alongside heroes known and unknown. Be well, my friend. We are in this together, and we will survive and do everything we can as we train our fellow officers so that this never happens again…yet knowing it will.

We shoulder that burden because it is WORTH IT, even on days like today when the load is oh so heavy.”

Yet Another Murdered Coworker – I Think I’m Done

The following was written by the same Sacramento Sheriff’s Deputy who wrote the post about Bob French’s murder.


Why in the hell is my cell phone blowing up with text messages?

Shit, this many texts in this short a time, this can’t be good…

FUCK!!!!  Gawd dammit, not again!!!!  How in the hell is this possible?

Another coworker murdered while doing his job!

Just 18 days ago was the one year anniversary of Bob’s murder, and now, again, here I sit listening to the radio traffic from the scene of the murder of yet another coworker, while wearing a memorial T-shirt commemorating the loss of two other coworkers.

I sit here feeling helpless, useless, hopeless, occupied by my own depressing thoughts and memories, of the losses of so many other coworkers.  Some I knew well, others I knew not at all.

Oh, how I long to be at the scene, to be involved in making this thing right in some small way.  Because if I was there, busy, doing something, anything, I would not be sitting here, thinking about, remembering all the other times I have felt this indescribable, inexplicable feeling of loss.

This time, I did not even know the man.  Despite that, despite not knowing him, he was my brother.  He wore the same uniform as me, the same badge, swore the same oath to protect the same city as me.

I have since learned from coworkers who knew Mark Stasyuk that he was well liked, a hard worker, young, early in his career, new to patrol, and very sadly, just recently married.  This is ripping my freaking heart out!

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Most people who are not in this line of work would assume that not knowing the man would make this easier.  They would be wrong.  Honestly, it makes very little difference.

Knowing the officer killed is only a small part of the loss we feel.  I cannot help but think about his partner and what she is going through right now.  Even though they were both shot, she performed CPR on her mortally wounded partner.  His poor family, who still does not even know, will soon receive the most devastating news a young wife could ever imagine receiving.

So here I sit, at home, listening to the radio, with a big drink, unsuccessfully trying to take the edge off, thinking about all of the other coworkers I have buried during my career.  Cops I know from other agencies, some from other states even, doing what we all do when something like this happens, offering sincere condolences and offers to help in whatever manner they can.  But in reality, there is nothing they can do.  They can’t turn back time, they can’t bring the officer back, and as the days pass, most of us will process this loss in our own ways and we will be okay.

My biggest worry is his partner.  I know her only slightly.  She struck me as a very squared away young cop, the type who is going to second guess the holy hell out of herself.  Nothing we can say will stop her from doing that, and none of the hypothetical scenarios she will run through in her head will change what happened.

I read the call they responded to.  It is a call our agency goes to a dozen times a day.  It was a call I have handled by myself, solo, more than once.

But it wasn’t.  Because even though all the calls are similar, they are never exactly the same.  In this case, the bad guy had a gun and he chose to do bad guy shit, and he shot both of the cops who were sent to deal with his dumb ass.

Even though I read the call, I did not look at any of the suspect information.  I only know that the suspect was male, and that he is in custody.

I will however take a wild ass guess about some things we are likely to learn about the suspect.  He will have prior arrests, probably lots of them.  Many will be for less serious crimes, like trespassing or public intoxication, but then there will be others, crimes that used to be considered serious crimes, crimes that used to be felonies.  I suspect we will find weapons charges, possibly even gun charges, and likely there will be assault charges.  Probably even some convictions, even recent convictions.

His laundry list of charges (or those I suspect we will learn about), in any other SANE state would have had him currently residing in a government run, full service board and care home (prison).  But here in California, where our insane liberal lawmakers and most of the Democrat party say it is mean to punish convicts for their crimes, so we just release them, because that is the “humanitarian” thing to do…

So, you ask, why do I guess we might hear all that about the suspect?  Because that is what we always find out.  History tells me those things.  Hell, out of the last 15 cops shot and killed in California, that is the background of at least half of their murderers.

Add to that, current legislation that is being pushed by liberal politicians (Kevin McCarty and Shirley Weber) who want to make it even more difficult for cops to protect themselves in deadly force situations, because to them, cops are the bad guys.

The same liberal politicians who are responsible for the legislation that lead to Bob’s murder.

So here I sit, seriously considering walking in tomorrow and pulling the plug.

I’ve had it.

Fuck this state!

The people running this state value their elected positions, and the votes that keep them there, more than they do the citizens they represent or the cops who keep them all safe.

I’ve given this state enough of me.  I’ve given it my best, for a long time, and I nearly have given it my life, on more than one occasion.

During my career, ten of my coworkers have given their lives for this county.

Of those ten, six were murdered.

And that is JUST my agency, during my career.

Yes, I realize there are many, many folks out there who support us.  We see them after every single incident like this.  We see their thin blue line flags and stickers.  We know we have a lot of support.

But sadly, those who support us are outnumbered by those who vote for the politicians responsible for the legislation that is killing us.

I don’t know if I can continue doing this.

I’m sure I am not alone.

Rest in peace, Mark.

Thank you for your service.

Hopefully, for society’s sake, someone will have the watch from here.

Inevitable Result of the War On Cops: An Innocent Life Lost

Congratulations to all the anti-cop protesters out there, this woman’s death is the direct result of your actions!

First, before I go any further, I feel horrible for the family and friends of Elizabeth Tollison, the innocent woman who was killed.  I offer my sincere condolences for your loss. My comments that will follow are not remotely meant to belittle her loss, but rather to address what caused it.

Elizabeth Tollison died because, thanks to all the violent anti-cop protests across the nation over the last 4+ years, cops are now afraid to do their jobs. Had this incident occurred 6 years ago, that suspect never would have gotten close enough to that poor old lady to injure her, let alone have her become a hostage. Those cops would have dropped him before he could get that close, and rightfully so, because when you don’t, this is exactly what happens.

Here we have a “brown skinned” man, clearly armed, with a violent history, on parole, who cops were called on because he was violent and attacked his girlfriend, and several white cops who, arguably rightfully so, don’t want to shoot him lest they become the next face of the rallying cry against law enforcement. After all, “he only had a knife…”

We have been saying this was going to happen.

We have watched proactive cop work practically cease.

This is just another example of the Ferguson Effect.

Congratulations Black Lives Matter! Congratulations Barack Obama! This innocent woman’s death is the direct result of your actions.
-Matt

Shaun King Has Gone Too Far

I’m pretty sure most of the people who follow this page do not follow Shaun King, or the guy whose nickname I love, Talcum X. If you don’t know who Shaun is, he is a Black Lives Matter organizer who gained fame during the Ferguson riots. Shaun is a white guy who, like Rachel Dolezal, pretends to be black. Shaun has somehow become a regular contributor to the NY Daily News among other places, and he has 1.5 million followers on Facebook and Twitter.

Shaun hates cops and constantly stirs both anti-cop and racial tensions.

Shaun is a boil on the ass of society, yet he has a large public voice and the liberals seem to love him.

Yesterday, King made a Facebook post (he has since deleted the post, but you can see a screen shot of the entire post at the bottom of this) regarding an incident that took place early in the morning yesterday in Texas. He got his information via third and fourth parties, but since it was derogatory of cops, he took this fairytale as gospel. Not only did he take it as gospel, but he put this total hearsay in his Facebook post as if it were factual, like he actually witnessed it and knows for a fact that it all occurred.

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The crux of matter is a Texas State Trooper made a vehicle stop on a suspected drunk driver. The trooper arrested the driver and took her to jail.

And in the most shocking of news, the person who was arrested claims they did not commit the crime… Gasp!

According to King’s post, the Texas cop not only arrested this attractive young lady only because he did not like her attitude, but before transporting her to the jail, he sexually assaulted her.

Those are some pretty serious allegations.

Now, I am not saying that could never happen, but anyone who pays attention knows that Texas Department of Public Safety has dash cams in their cars. Hell, King should know this since one of the cases he is always harping about, Sandra Bland, was a traffic stop by Texas DPS and the whole incident was captured on dash cam. Knowing that there is going to be dash cam footage, a remotely semi-intelligent person might wait for the video before making such definitive statements, including claims of severe criminal conduct, but good old Talcum X is not that smart. Neither are his followers, who have begun threatening to kill the officer and his family.

The sheer volume of idiots who take the crap King spews as gospel is downright scary.

Due to the severity of the allegations, and the instant public uproar, the Texas DPS not only reviewed the dash cam footage of the stop, but they released a public statement saying that nothing on the video remotely corroborates the claims.

In other words, the allegations are total bullshit.

Yet, knowing that the Texas DPS has reviewed the video and says none of this is true, King has not done anything to try and lower the tensions.  He has not updated his post, amended it, edited it, nothing.  He has made zero effort to calm the crowd that he has personally gotten all riled up.  If you ask me, not only based on his original post, but based on his lack of actions since the Texas DPS released their public statement, King’s actions seem to fit the criteria of inciting a riot.  Perhaps it is time that cop hating race pimp face some legal consequences for his despicable behavior.  If nothing else, he needs to be sued for libel.

My buddy Donut Operator put together a nice video covering this whole mess and he came to much the same conclusions that I have.  In fairness, he did his video last night while I lazily laid on the couch watching a movie with my family.


 

Seeing as King has deleted his original Facebook post, and is trying to pretend it never happened, here it is.

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US News Media – Unable to NOT Bash Law Enforcement

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Yesterday, a monster in human skin, a man known as the East Area Rapist or Golden State Killer, or several other names, was arrested after more than 40 years of investigations done by hundreds, if not thousands of cops throughout the state of California and across the nation. Lots of those cops have spent their entire careers working aspects of this case, many of them on their own time.  The number hours of invested in this case is astronomical.

Yesterday, some of the agencies involved held a press conference to share some of the information with the news media.  The suspect is now 72 years old.  Way back in the 1970’s, he was employed as a cop for two different agencies for a total of about 7 years.  His last agency was the police department of Auburn, CA, and that was his last agency because he was fired from his job for stealing.  He was a dirty cop who got fired.  The good cops did the right thing and got rid of the trash.

Here we are, more than 40 years later, and the news agencies are writing headlines that call him an “ex-cop.”

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You know what you never hear?  “Ex-plumber arrested for…” or “ex-carpenter” or ex anything else.  But god forbid the person ever worked in the slightest degree for the shortest amount of time as a cop, because forever thereafter the news will refer to them as an “ex-cop.”  Even if they were fired from their cop job for being dirty.

Christopher Dorner is the perfect example of this.  Dorner was never a full fledged cop.  He was a cop trainee who was released from his employment because he could not pass training.  He was a trainee.  He was not a cop.  He never held a California POST certificate as a law enforcement officer, only as an academy graduate.  Yet what did the headlines read with him?

“Rogue ex-cop Christopher Dorner…” – San Bernardino Sun

“Ex-LAPD cop accused of going on killing spree” – CBS News

“Los Angeles Manhunt: Ex-Cop Christopher Dorner Sought for Killing Spree” – ABC News

The media will do anything they can to disparage law enforcement because it makes them money.  Who cares if this constant bashing erodes the community’s trust in the cops.  Who cares if this constant bashing of the career is making it impossible to fill vacancies.  Who cares if there is even an ounce of truth to the allegations against a cop (Ferguson and many others).  If it gets people to click the link, watch the story or buy the paper, then by all means bash the cops, society be damned.

Chaos Reigns in Sacramento

On Sunday March 18, 2018, two Sacramento Police officers shot and killed a man.  The young man, Stephon Clark, was a 22 (or 23 depending on the source) year old black man, who was not armed.  To listen to Black Lives Matter or the deceased man’s family, you would think he was a fine upstanding young man, a pillar of society, who was seated in his backyard praying when two racist cops burst into the yard and shot him without an ounce of provocation.  Some news outlets referred to him as a “stay at home dad” and talked about how he was a “loving father who was turning his life around.”  To say the headlines were incendiary is an understatement.

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Despite what Black Lives Matter, the mainstream media and many of the ‘protesters’ would have you believe, Clark was not an innocent young man who played no role in his own demise.  He was a multiple time convicted felon, with priors for robbery, drugs, domestic violence, human trafficking, and illegal possession of a gun.  He was indeed the father of two kids, whom he did not have custody of.  He was staying with his grandmother crashing at his grandmother’s from time to time after his most recent release from jail approximately one month before he was killed.

Even the ultra-liberal Sacramento Bee was forced to admit that Clark was not the angel that protesters are portraying when they said the following.  Bear in mind, these are only charges that were filed against him since he turned 18, which is just four (4) short years.

“A search of Sacramento Superior Court records found four related cases for a Stephan Alonzo Clark. The most recent were two felony counts of domestic abuse, to which Clark – who preferred to go by the name Stephon – pleaded guilty and agreed to complete a treatment program. The court record also shows a 2008 robbery charge, and charges in 2013 for possession of a firearm and possession of a controlled substance.”

On the night that Clark was killed, he was seen breaking into parked cars by a neighbor who called 911.  Sacramento Police units responded, as did the Sacramento Sheriff’s helicopter.  Upon locating him, the helicopter observed him breaking into a home by smashing out a rear window to the home.  After doing that, he fled on foot, jumped a fence into the backyard of another home, where he began walking toward the street.  About half way to the street, he was contacted by a Sacramento Police officer who told him to stop and show his hands.  Clark instead turned and ran back into the backyard of the home.  The original officer and one other chased him into the backyard and as they rounded the corner, they saw Clark across the yard reportedly pointing something at them.  The officers thought is was a gun, as is evidenced both by they shouting “gun” on the body camera video, but also based on their actions as viewed from the helicopter FLIR footage.  Seconds later, as Clark moved toward the officers, they opened fire shooting him.  He died from his wounds.  No gun was found on him, but a cell phone was.  They determined he was apparently holding the cellphone which the officers mistook for a gun.

Since that shooting happened, there have been ‘protests’ nearly every day in downtown Sacramento.  At one point, ‘protesters’ marched onto northbound Interstate 5 and stopped traffic.  They climbed onto vehicle and vandalized CHP cars that responded.  Twice in the same week, they surrounded the Golden One Center, where the Sacramento Kings play, and prevented attendees from entering the arena for a game.  After the first incident, the Kings even made a public statement in which they espoused solidarity with the protesters, even wearing warm up jerseys with Clark’s name on them, but that did not dissuade the ‘protesters’ from shutting down another game the next day.

However, before those ‘protesters’ marched to the Golden One Center, they first overran an open to the public Sacramento City Council meeting where they acted like complete buffoons, with Stevante Clark (the dead guy’s brother) strutting around and jumping up onto the dais, getting right into the pandering Mayor Steinberg’s face and screaming at him.  He continued by fronting off the Chief of Police and declaring that Steinberg is no longer the mayor.  It was a total sh!t show, and luckily for us, CBS 13 was good enough to put the complete, unedited video of it on their YouTube channel.

Finally, after nearly six (6) minutes of total loss of control, Steinberg announced a 15 minute recess, that way he would not be present when the cops cleared out the rabble.  After all, forcing people who cannot follow the rules out of the building would not be very inclusive of him…

Later, the group of protesters that were forced from City Hall marched down the street where they proceeded to shut down the Kings game as I previously mentioned.  The open public city council meeting resumed and, while most of the speakers I saw appeared to be educated and well spoken, many of their comments seemed only partially if at all related to the topic that they were supposedly there to discuss.  As the night continued, the speakers became more and more unhinged, and eventually the whole thing was shut down more than two hours early as police made an arrest or two and had to forcefully remove others.  Steinberg’s hands off, open dialogue policy is not remotely working, just like hands off policies never do.

At one point during the multiple hours long open public council meeting, one of the people speaking asked the audience to pull out their cell phones and point them at the mayor.  One of the ‘protesters’ in attendance obliged and was captured on camera doing so.  Now, I would like to personally thank this man for proving a point that many people have tried to make, that given the proper pose, as exemplified by this man, in the dark of night while chasing a man who was seen breaking into cars and a house, you round a corner and see something similar to this, it can be quite easy to mistake a man pointing a cell phone at you as someone pointing a gun at you.

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Black Lives Matter Sacramento has promised that their protest’s will continue at least through Clark’s funeral, which now boasts the Reverend race baiter extraordinaire Al Sharpton as the guest speaker who will provide the eulogy.

While it has been largely under/unreported by the media, these ‘protests’ have not been as peaceful as some would have you believe.  While they have by no means devolved into what happened in Ferguson or Baltimore, there have been numerous violent felonies committed.  ‘Protesters’ violently attacked a counter protester (cop supporter) outside of the Golden One center.  ‘Protesters’ surrounded multiple different police vehicles as they left the Sacramento jail, which happens to be located in downtown Sacramento.  In fact, an officer from an outside agency reportedly called for Code 3 cover as they got surrounded while trying to leave.  ‘Protesters’ attacked a woman who was driving down the street because she did not want to stop for their ‘protest,’ and in my opinion, she was well within her rights as those ‘protesters’ are breaking multiple laws when they flood the street and prevent people from freely travelling where they so choose.

In fact, I would argue that legally speaking, those protesters are committing a false imprisonment of every single motorist they have trapped.  The police should be arresting every one of those fools, but instead they are treating them with kid gloves.

If you want to protest, I fully support your right to do so, but your rights do not trump those of people who are completely uninvolved in the matter.  You do not get to commit crimes just because you are angry.  Letting these ‘protesters’ continue to act like this reminds me of parents of that spoiled rotten kid who is flopping around on the floor having a temper tantrum while the parents offer them bribes to stop acting like that.  What that spoiled brat needs is a smack on the ass, and that is what these ‘protesters’ need also.  Law and order applies to all people equally and cares not about skin color.  It is time the people in charge in Sacramento start enforcing the law instead of making excuses for a group of law breakers just because of their skin color.

Oh yeah, by the way, those two racist cops who shot the poor innocent church going choir boy I mentioned at the start of this, one of them just happens to be black…  Maybe, just maybe, this shooting had nothing to do with race and everything to do with the dead guy being a criminal doing stupid criminal things.

And just in case no one is aware, there are actually guns disguised to look just like a cell phone.  In fact, the department I work for has sent out officer safety bulletins describing them and included pictures of them, just like the picture of the .380ACP cell phone gun below.

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If you were previously unaware of the cell phone gun, take 45 seconds and watch this clip (starts at 4:44 mark just in case the link doesn’t work properly).  The guys in this video is pretty much foresaw exactly what happened in this situation.


For those who have not seen the video of the shooting, I include the raw footage of the incident from both officer’s body cameras and the helicopter’s FLIR footage in the following video where I breakdown the shooting.

Anti-gun Policies Cost Lives In Florida

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It has been a little more than a week since the horrific shooting in Parkland, FL and as more becomes known about what lead up to that shooting, it is proving itself to be a tragically perfect example of government’s total failure, in fact it’s inability to keep people safe.  Getting beyond the mistakes that were made by multiple agencies on many levels, getting beyond the cowardice of one or more responding cops, we need to look at another aspect of this horrible incident.  Since so many people from students to school administrators, to the Sheriff of Broward County, all the way up to lawmakers on the federal level are screaming for more gun control, let’s take a close look at the effect that existing gun policies played in this incident.

Since Sheriff Scott Israel has seen fit to very publicly scream for gun control himself, and done so in the most unprofessional manner I can imagine, ripping into people who disagrees with his point of view like an emotional teenager, all on national television, so I’ll start with him.  Broward County Sheriff’s Office is a very large Sheriff’s department with, according to their website, more than 5,800 employees (includes sworn and non-sworn).  Their annual budget is $730M.  That is a very big local department by almost any standard.

Would it surprise you to find out that the Broward County Sheriff’s Office does not issue rifles to their patrol cops?  It sure as hell surprised me!  What year is this?  In this day and age, it is practically criminal to not supply your street cops with a rifle.  (Broward deputies can buy their own rifle if they desire, but the department does not issue them.)

I thought the North Hollywood Bank Robbery in 1997 taught us all that cops needed long guns?  I would think that all of the recent mass shooting incidents that our news media sees fit to talk about 24/7 for weeks on end would have taught us all that.  I would think that all of the changes in training and tactics for law enforcement over the last 20+ years would have taught us all that.  But apparently none of that got through to Scott Israel, since he refuses to issue rifles to his street cops.

Now, before anyone jumps up and claims I have no idea what is involved in providing rifles to an entire department, let me assure you I do.  I happen to work for a large agency, although not as large as Broward County, and I have worked in an administrative position on my department where my job was providing equipment for all of our patrol deputies.  I understand perfectly the difficulties in providing equipment for a large agency.  And yes, it is a much different beast than providing tools for a smaller agency.  Buying 10 of something is much different than buying 500, or 1,000 of the same thing.  I understand perfectly that there is a significant cost in trying to put a rifle in every patrol officer’s hands, EXCEPT THERE IS NOT!  The Broward County Sheriff could get all the rifles they want from the Federal 1033 program for FREE!  Zero, nada, nothing.   Instead the man in charge, the man with whom the buck stops, Sheriff Scott Israel chose not to put rifles in the hands of his deputies, but why?

There is only one reason that can explain why Sheriff Israel would make the conscious decision to not issue rifles to his troops,  and that is because Israel allowed his personal anti-gun agenda to cloud his judgement.  His personal gun control ideals influenced how he equipped his cops, and those ideals kept the necessary tools out of the hands of the men and women who most desperately needed those tools last week.

Disturbingly, Sheriff Israel is not the only policy maker who allowed his feelings about guns to cloud his judgement.  The school administration is also to blame.  If you doubt a school administration would allow their personal opinions about firearms to influence their policy making, I have some bad news for you, and a bridge to sell you.

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I spoke with a friend who works for one of the local agencies there in Florida and asked about why the school cops did not have rifles.  Turns out, the school administrators and school board actively prevented the law enforcement officers who are assigned to the schools from having a rifle on campus.   The local agencies approached the schools about placing gun safes in the school cop’s office, in which the cop could secure his rifle from his car, if he even had one, so it would be near him in the event of an emergency.  The school district administration flat out refused to allow that.  You know, because a cop carrying a rifle into an office and locking it up is super ultra mega scary and we cannot have high school kids seeing a cop carrying a long gun, or something like that.

So what that policy means in the real world is that the school cop responding to an incident on campus is required to assess the situation and determine if a rifle is needed, and make a choice on limited information:  go to the scene or to my car and get my rifle.  Most times that would mean going to the scene sans long gun, evaluating the situation and if a rifle is needed, returning to your car to get it, rather than just taking it from the office with you initially.  How on Earth does that make sense to anyone?  If schools had a firefighter located on campus, would they prevent them from having a fire extinguisher in their office?

Lastly, the delusional myth that calling anything a “gun free zone” somehow protects anyone is beyond me.  How does anyone in their right mind think that putting a sign up is going to stop someone from doing something that they want to do, especially if what that person wants to do is already illegal?  Do speed limit signs prevent speeding, anywhere, ever?  Rather than declaring a location a “gun free zone,” why not instead enact laws that simultaneously, harshly punish people who illegally bring a gun onto a school campus, but that also allow people who have gone to all the trouble to obtain a concealed carry permit to have their firearm, including teachers and other school personnel if they so desire.  Nationally, concealed carry license holders are the single most law abiding group of people there is, even more law abiding than law enforcement.  Why would you intentionally prevent potential help from having the single most needed tool in a crisis situation where every second counts, and every second means another life lost?  I cannot fathom the amount of delusion and denial that is necessary to not grasp this simple fact.

It is clear to me as a career cop that two factors combined together which allowed these horrible policies to be created.  The first factor is a irrational dislike of firearms and the second is denial.  The only way to explain a Sheriff refusing to give his patrol cops free rifles is his extreme anti-gun agenda, which he has espoused nearly non-stop since this incident.  The only way to explain a school not wanting officers to have long guns available on campus is their dislike and/or fear of firearms.  The other factor, denial, is also clear to anyone with law enforcement experience.  These administrators, both the Sheriff and the school, were in denial that an incident like this tragic shooting could ever happen.  It is clear from the policies they put in place.  If they had faced the sad reality that something like this could happen, they would have issued the proper tools and would have established policies that helped first responders, not hindered them.

Sadly, this incident is chock full of screw ups, balls dropped, bad decision making, bad policy, and sadly, one or more cowardly cops who failed to do what we took an oath to do.  There is much to be learned from this shooting.  Two of the biggest takeaways in my opinion are 1) policies derived from anti-gun opinions do nothing to keep anyone safe, and 2) if you are counting on government to keep you safe, as much as the vast majority of cops really do try, you are betting on the wrong horse.

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This piece can also be found at Full30.com and The Daily Caller

Failure To Engage That Cost Innocent Kids Their Lives

Image source: Washington Examiner
Image source: Washington Examiner

By now, you may have seen the breaking news stories about how the Broward County Sheriff’s Deputy who was assigned as a School Resource Officer (SRO) at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL failed engage the gunman for 4-6 minutes.  Initially, I was angry and disgusted when I heard this, but I took a minute to gather myself.  I mean how often has the media gotten things wrong about how we do our jobs?  For all I knew, it could have been a 4-6 minute response time and they were taking it out of context in an attempt to make the cops look bad, but the media would never intentionally try to make cops look bad would they?

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Since I personally know someone who responded to this horrific scene, I reached out to him.  Not only did he confirm that the Broward deputy waited outside for an extended period of time, he said that the first responding officers (not counting the Broward SRO in question) ran right past him and he still did not move.

I’m sorry, but this sorry excuse for a cop MUST be fired! (Update: Sadly, he resigned before they could fire him.)  This deputy’s failure to engage, their total failure to do their single most important job as an SRO, to save the lives of the students who have been entrusted to you, cost innocent children their lives!  I am beyond disgusted. Cops around this country took their SRO assignments for a variety of reasons, and only some of them were for the right reason.  The right reason is to make a difference in the lives of the students, and God forbid, when that nightmare scenario unfolds and some psycho nutjob with a gun attacks the school, they are the first and immediate line of defense.  That is the job they signed up for, whether or not it was the reason they took the job.

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To all of the other SRO’s out there, no matter what city, state or agency you work for, you best look deep inside yourself right effing now and figure out if you can do your job when it counts the most.  When the time comes, are you going to saddle up, strap on that rifle and go to work, or are you going puss out and cower somewhere waiting for other real cops to show up and do your job?  If you are in the second group, please do ALL the other cops a favor and find a new line of work before you get someone killed.

To those of you who find yourself in the first group, let this incident be a solemn reminder that bad shit can and does happen, and we never know when or where it might strike.  Be prepared, always.  Train, train often and train hard.  Take all the active shooter training you can get.  Take your firearm training seriously, and take a lot of it.  Don’t just be proficient with your handgun and your rifle, master the shit out of them!  Take combat first aid classes.  There are lots of places that put it on, and some even supply you with a high quality military spec medic bag when you take them.  The kids and staff at your school are counting on you to keep them safe, and the rest of us in uniform are counting on you to represent us, your blue family, like a professional.

I have no idea how this particular SRO is going to be able to live with himself.  If that were me, and I knew my failure to engage cost someone their life, let alone a bunch of innocent kids, I cannot imagine the mental torture I would be putting myself through.  No matter how they decide to deal with this, they should absolutely no longer be allowed to wear a badge.  They have failed their employer, they have failed our profession, they have failed the country and most importantly, they failed their kids, some of whom would still be alive if they had done their job.

To everyone who has been touched by this incident, I know I speak for quite a few cops when I say on behalf of law enforcement, I apologize for this deputy’s failure to engage that cost the lives of innocent children.

Anti-Cop Activism Disguised as News

Capture“There are other things they could have done” (photo caption) says someone who has zero training or experience in the job, and almost no life experience.


The Sacramento Bee, besides being  (quoting my dad) a “pinko commie liberal rag,” has a long history of not being friendly to law enforcement, but lately it has turned from unfriendly to downright adversarial.  This recent article is a perfect example of that, and does nothing for anyone except for the cop haters.

First, let me address the facts of the incident before we get into this latest piece of Sac Bee anti-cop propaganda.  In November 2016, in the very early morning hours (5am), Sacramento County deputies were called to a house in Fair Oaks where a strange man, Jesse Attaway, broke into a home, but was chased out after trying to get the home owner to hand over the keys to his car.  The suspect started jumping fences and tried to break into several more homes.  The cops received numerous calls about the man trying to break into homes.  Cops located the burglar and when they confronted him, at gunpoint, he refused to comply with orders.  He would not show his hands and kept turning away from the cops.  Finally, he pulled his hands out of his pockets in a rapid motion and pointed something at the deputies, who thinking it was a gun, shot and killed him.

Per the news stories from the time of the incident, which coincidentally was about the same time Alfred Olango was shot for doing nearly the same thing, it was indicated the suspect’s motions looked just like someone drawing a gun and taking a shooting stance.

During the follow up investigation, it was discovered that he arrived in the area driving a stolen car, which he stole during a burglary earlier in the evening in Rocklin, CA .  In addition to the stolen car, he had methamphetamine in his pocket and according to the autopsy, he was high on meth at the time he was killed.

So, let me sum up Attaway’s crimes just the night of his death.  Multiple counts of burglary, grand theft auto, attempted grand theft auto, possession of methamphetamine, driving under the influence, and his final act, felony stupid which is what got him killed.

Now for this ridiculous Sacramento Bee article.  It starts off with a touching tale of woe, sprinkled with fictional nonsense designed to make the reader emotional, because it is easier to get you on their side if you are emotional.  “On the one-year anniversary of the day their father was shot and killed by two Sacramento sheriff’s deputies, sisters Bobbi Attaway and Sierra Rivera returned to the suburban street where he died, and where they thought they could still see traces of his blood staining the asphalt.”

Uh, no, no you didn’t.  The blood is cleaned up by a professional hazmat cleanup company.  I’ve been to scenes of outdoor homicides only days later and there is no evidence of blood stains, let alone a full year later.  But hey, it makes a more touching story if they can see their dad’s blood stains, so we’ll just say they “thought they saw” some.

But wait, we should pile on more completely irrelevant nonsense like “a father the girls described as funny and non-confrontational.”  Not sure how often his daughters were tasked with arresting their dad, but oddly enough, people behave differently when they are chilling with their family as compared to when they are stoned, in the middle of a crime spree and get caught by the cops.  I know that might seem odd, but trust me, it is true.

“How could Attaway, 41, have methamphetamine in his system, as a toxicology report found, when his daughters never knew he did drugs?”  Uh, because they live in a bubble and did not pay attention to what their dad was doing, either that or they are lying about not knowing.

You see, this was far from Attaway’s first exposure to meth.  Hell, it was not even the first time the cops found meth in his possession, and the Sac Bee damn well knows that, or they should.  It took me all of 10 minutes to check the public court records for both Sacramento County and Placer County, the two counties in which this crime spree occurred, and the two counties in which Attaway had lived.  Lo and behold, Attaway had two prior arrests for possession of methamphetamine for which he spent three years on probation.  If the Sac Bee was interested in the truth, they would have offered that up, but truth is not what they are after.

Then they go on to talk about the “civil rights attorney” which is funny thing to call a guy who has a reputation in the area of pretty much making a living off of suing city and county government agencies, especially when the cops are involved.  Beyond that, they talk about all sorts of other things, doubts, policies, other unrelated allegations, just about anything else they could throw in there before they get down to brass tacks:  the shooting was deemed a good shoot by the homicide investigators, by the district attorney’s office and by the independent inspector general.  Yes, you read that right, it was a good shoot according to everyone.

But that has never stopped the Sacramento Bee from dragging the cops through the mud.

Hell, this time around, they are also throwing some of the mud.

Cue the poorly edited cellphone video of a sad teen.  Be sure to include family photos of the suspect smiling thrown in for that extra little tug at the reader’s heart strings…

Law Enforcement Unions Betray Their Members & Attack Gun Rights

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It has been two days since a partnership between the 49ers and eight law enforcement labor unions was announced.  This peculiar collection of organizations all signed a “pledge for a more understanding and safer America.”   As a cop, this move absolutely baffles me.  When I got home from work the day this was announced, I filmed a video (video below) talking about it.  Here is is two days later and I am still having trouble discussing this without my blood pressure noticeably rising.

Why exactly am I so upset by this move?  Let’s examine this whole concept first, and to do that, we must look at the pledge being signed.  Here is the complete text of the pledge that was signed:

“We believe that the duty of law enforcement professionals does not end with responding to a call for service.  The duty of law enforcement must also include actively participating in bringing our nation together and working to foster a more understanding and compassionate national dialogue around community and police officer relations.”

“We believe that professional sports teams should utilize their capacity to reach millions of Americans to promote initiatives that help law enforcement professionals and the citizens they serve understand their respective experiences and listen to one another with an open mind and heart.”

“As such, those signing this pledge will dedicated the necessary resources to strive to make every encounter between an American police officer they serve to be grounded in mutual respect; to advocate for commonsense (sic) local, state and federal legislation that will contribute to the safety of all Americans, and work together to improve the national dialogue around race, policing and violence prevention.”

“The undersigned do pledge:

  1. To keep our citizens and our police officers safe, we will work with our local, state, and federal legislatures to ban “bump stocks” and any other mechanism that allows the conversion of a semi-automatic weapon into an automatic weapon; armor-piercing bullets; and gun silencers.

  2. To advocate for additional mental health services to deliver the necessary care, medication and programs to those in need.

  3. To partner with professional sports franchise teams, corporations, faith-based and community based organizations to produce, promote and distribute a series of public service announcements designed to improve police and community relations.

  4. To engage in a constructive dialogue around issues critical to improving the health and welfare of all our residents”

Since the pledge can really be split into two main topics, I will examine them one at a time. The first part of this pledge is the “more understanding” goal of the pledge.  You know, that misunderstanding that originated with a 49er player, Colin Kaepernick, when he began disrespecting the flag and the country because of his baseless, negative opinions of law enforcement.  You know, the guy who wore anti-police pig socks; the guy who donated $25k to a “charity” that honors a convicted cop killer; the guy who started a trend in the entire NFL of millionaires protesting “police brutality and racism.”  That is apparently the “misunderstanding” that we are going to deal with, the misunderstanding started by the 49ers, spurred on by the 49ers and the rest of the NFL, the misunderstanding that neither the 49ers nor the NFL have done anything to try and correct thus far, the misunderstanding that has football stadiums around the country empty on game days, the misunderstanding that has the NFL reeling from their financial losses due entirely to their complete mishandling of this whole situation.

These rich, privileged athletes, men who get paid millions to play a game, are out there spreading lies that have been created by Black Lives Matter, a very anti-police organization.  You see, most of America understands that when you point to situations like the following as a reason to protest police, you have no argument:

“In early 2016, I began paying attention to reports about the incredible number of unarmed black people being killed by the police.  The posts on social media deeply disturbed me, but one in particular brought me to tears: the killing of Alton Sterling in my hometown Baton Rouge, La. This could have happened to any of my family members who still live in the area.” 

Alton Sterling was a convicted felon who was threatening people with a gun in front of a convenience store, and when the cops contacted him, he fought the cops and was shot while reaching for the loaded handgun in his waistband.  That is absolutely not “unarmed black people being killed by the police.”

So why on earth would law enforcement labor unions partner with the very people furthering the lies perpetrated against our profession?  This makes absolutely no sense.  This is a perfect example Stockholm Syndrome.  If the 49ers had done something, anything that qualified as an apology, and then took steps to right their wrong, then I could see, at some point down the road, working with them to clear up their misunderstanding, because let me be clear, the misunderstanding is 100% on them, but that has not happened.  What has happened is that the 49ers dangled a shiny carrot (money) in front of a bunch of politically minded union presidents and they bit.  However, most of the working cops, the people on the streets doing the actual cop work are not so willing to forgive and forget, especially something as damaging as these NFL protests have been, not only to law enforcement specifically but to the entire country.

The second part of this pledge is nothing but a steaming, unfounded pile of leftist crap being used to push an anti-gun agenda, which is sadly not surprising since unions typically kiss up to liberal politicians.  But in reality, gun control is something that no law enforcement labor union should ever be involved in pushing.  We, law enforcement, are complaining about how the public perceives us.  We have a HUGE public image problem right now (thanks in part to the 49ers), and so the solution these union leaders see to that problem is to publicly call for the infringement on the rights of Americans?  To quote the great Pepper Brooks, that is a bold strategy.

But hey, maybe I should take a closer look at what they are calling for before I completely dismiss their ideas.  They want to ban bump stocks, or “any other mechanism that allows the conversion of a semi-automatic weapon into an automatic weapon,” armor-piercing bullets and silencers (suppressors).  In doing so, they are claiming this is only “commonsense.”  So, since it is supposedly common sense and law enforcement unions are calling for their bans, the calls for these particular items to be banned must reasonably be based on their prevalent use in crimes, right? Well, as it turns out, not really.

One person on my FB page asked me for my reasoning for opposing banning these items.  In short, because the Second Amendment, however my opposition really requires a much more in depth explanation as I realize not everyone out there understands how firearms work.

“Bump stocks” – They have been around, commercially available for about a decade. They have sold tens of thousands of them in that time, and since they were introduced, one person has misused them criminally, ONE. They are a novelty item and they provide zero tactical advantage, which is why no serious shooter has them installed on a gun that they might need to use as a go-to defense gun. It can be argued, and I would agree, that a good shooter with a dialed in bolt action rifle and a good scope properly sighted could have done far more damage in the same time frame that the monster in Las Vegas did with his large array of AR’s.

Hell, a bump fire stock is not even necessary to bump fire a rifle. I’ve bump fired just about every semi-auto rifle I own, including a couple of WWII rifles.

“Any other mechanism that allows for the conversion of a semi-automatic weapon into an automatic weapon” – Complete and utter hyperbolic bull crap! A bump stock does absolutely NOT convert a semi-auto gun to full-auto.  If a bump fire stock actually did that, the BATF would never have approved them as non-NFA items, but they did, twice, under Obama.  The reason a bump stock is legal is that for each round that is fired, the trigger is activated manually by the user, just like any other semi-auto firearm.  Much of the legislation that is being pushed as a ban for bump stocks aim to cover “any item that increases the rate of fire of a semi-auto rifle.”  So, what exactly is the rate of fire of a semi-auto weapon?  There is no standard as it only fires as fast as the user can pull the trigger.  These laws are so ridiculously loosely worded that gun oil could be banned because a properly lubricated gun operates smoother and faster than a dry gun.  So are they going to ban gun oil?  There are countless videos that show how a rubber band can be used to assist in bump-firing a gun, or a stick, or a belt loop.  Are they going to ban all of those?

‘Armor-piercing ammo’ – So, are we talking legitimate, designed to pierce hard armor armor-piecing ammo or are we talking out our butts like most anti-gun people do? You see, the anti-gunners want to ban any ammo that will pierce soft body armor (like what I wear at work).  They throw out my profession as justification for that desire. The problem is, any full size rifle cartridge will piece soft body armor, even if it is not true ‘armor-piercing’ ammo.  If they are talking about actual armor-piercing ammunition, I know of no case where legitimate, true “armor-piercing” ammo was used.  In every case I could find when searching the internet, the ammo that is called “armor-piercing” was in fact just standard rifle ammo.  This again is a non-issue as “armor-piercing ammunition” is not being used by people to commit crimes. There is no justification for banning it.

Silencers / suppressors – Yet another non-issue. They are almost never used in crime, they don’t actually silence a gun, they merely partially suppress the sound and in most cases, hearing protection is still required even when the firearm is equipped with a suppressor, they are already an NFA item requiring a background check and a tax stamp before you can even get one. The problem is that morons and idiots see them in the movies and think that is how they work. Need I point out that movies are make believe?”

In summary, when pushing for legislation, especially legislation that infringes on the constitutionally guaranteed rights of Americans, it should be imperative that one would have solid justification for doing so.  In this instance, all of the items these traitorous union leaders and the 49ers are calling to ban, when examining the case from a logical (not emotional) point of view, there is no compelling argument to ban them.

In the last two days, ever since I first shared a news story about this incident on my Facebook page, I have been contacted by members of at least four of the eight unions that signed this pledge.  Those members told me that every cop they knew was furious that their union participated in this.  Several of them were talking about having an immediate call for the removal of their leadership because this move is completely against the views of the membership.  I can tell you, if my union had been part of this, I would be leading the call for an immediate removal of anyone involved in the decision.

This entire pledge is completely moronic, and shows just how low these union leaders will stoop to support liberal objectives just so they can try and get those same liberals to throw a few scraps to the unions.  Oddly enough, the liberals they are sucking up to are the very same liberals who are constantly, publicly attacking law enforcement.

To be quite frank, these unions signing this pledge reminds me of the Jewish Nazi collaborators from WWII, which leads me to wonder exactly what personal benefits the leaders of these unions must be getting in order to sell their membership down the drain like they have.

EDIT:  When originally writing this, I neglected to name the unions that participated in this fiasco from the start.  They included the San Jose Police Officers Association, Los Angeles Police Protective League, NYPD Sergeants Benevolent Association, Oakland Police Officers Association, Long Beach Police Officers Association, Portland Police Association, Deputy Sheriffs Association of Santa Clara County and lastly, the Sacramento Police Officers Association.

 


This is the video I filmed the day this partnership was announced.  A warning for those with sensitive dispositions, there are a few expletives in this video.