Blue Byline

A cop's perspective of the news and South Sound matters

Lack of big police stories not a real problem

Post by Brian O'Neill on Oct. 31, 2012 at 9:24 am with 5 Comments »
October 31, 2012 9:24 am

Most days I slug my coffee and sift through the paper. Most days said paper is chock full of stories that roll right into my wheelhouse. Not so much lately.

On any given day, the Trib’s A section is filled with articles that have at least a tangential connection to the police profession: national crime news, public safety budgets, local police stories, or controversial drug arrests. The shortage may not bode well for a column that feeds off such events, but it may say good things about our community’s overall health. Or not.

A perusal of today’s stories include the following:

1) Proposed budget cuts will severely impact Tacoma street repair;

2) Disney purchases Star Wars franchise, promises another trilogy;

3) Martian soil has similar chemistry to Hawaiian volcano;

4) Fatalities and ruin in wake of superstorm.

Based on my extensive ignorance of these issues of the day, it is unlikely that a coherent and worthy opinion would be forthcoming. But what the heck, I’ll give it a shot.

1) As bad the streets are now, is anyone going to notice?

2) (Insert mental picture of man doing cartwheels).

3) “Fascinating.”

4) Speechless.

Obviously I have a lot of work to do if I were eyeballing my editor’s job. Trust me, he’s not worried.

One story, involving a nude woman shoplifting a coat from a store in Lacey, is more in line with the comics page than police beat. Here’s how I might frame it: “You know you’re in trouble when covering your naked body requires you to steal, and the only way to shed the evidence requires you to commit the crime of indecent exposure. Talk about ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t.’”

In all probability, however, the woman was either suffering from mental health issues or the effects of illicit drugs. In the end, this story is not all that funny.

When I did find a police-related article on a page 3 sidebar (Trib 10/31), it was on the ubiquitous theme of domestic violence. Federal Way police are searching for a man who fired a handgun at his girlfriend’s apartment, almost hitting a 1-year-old child inside. What can you say about idiots like this, especially when their numbers are legion? My two cents: support your local YWCA women’s shelter.

As I said, a relatively quiet period for sensational police news. I hope that’s a good thing, and if so, I hope it continues.

Leave a comment Comments → 5
  1. Pecksbadboy says:

    You cannot talk about police corruption, secret union negotiations that hold taxpayers for ransom, or any story that might not portrait the TPD is a positive light.

    If the TNT does not play ball with the TPD they get no new stories.

    That is the crux of journalism today and that goes for all (Band of Brother’s) Police, Sheriff, Fire Fighters, Park Rangers and if the occasion arises Meter Readers and the Pet License Patrols.

  2. Brian O'Neill says:

    Pecksbadboy- To clarify, I am not an employee of The News Tribune, and I don’t “play ball” with anyone or thing. I do not understand your references to corruption or secret negotiations, either, though I have written several columns that have been critical of specific police officers and agencies.

    Since you seem to be a theorist in search of a conspiracy, I would ask that you tone down the rhetoric.

  3. tomwa007 says:

    Has the TNT ever asked you to tone down your “rhetoric” in a column?

  4. Brian O'Neill says:

    No. Referring to anything in particular?

  5. Good grief y’all.
    Every agency, corporation, business, etc. , has the bad apples that get the attention. There for the entire group is condemned as bad or rogue. Is this fair? Think about it, the guy (or gal) at the desk next to you is using the computer to access and skim from client accounts. If you are not aware of it or sharing in the proceeds, should you be tarred with the same brush?

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