Blue Byline

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

Tag: Lakewood police shooting


The tragic relativity of time

Three years is a long time.

Since 2009, I have watched my youngest teenager add a foot in height, seen our economy rise from the ashes and struggled to make sense of the politics behind our embittered national election.

Reading the paper this morning, I recalled another horrific milestone now three years in our rearview mirror. On November 29, in 2009, four Lakewood police officers were shot and killed in a Lakewood coffee shop.

We all know the brutally tragic story of Sergeant Mark Renninger and Officers Mark Richards, Tina Griswold and Ronald Owens. I remember hearing the news, the

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The “Skeeter Rule” could help prevent insider theft

When the last “Welcome aboard!” had faded away on my first day as a cop, I was briskly ushered to a dimly lit cubicle where a three-ring binder the size of the Cleveland phone book awaited. “This is the policy manual,” I was told. “Read it because you’re responsible for everything in it.”

Since then the digital age has rendered paper versions of workplace rules obsolete. This was timely because the human penchant for screw-ups would ultimately have led to a policy manual roughly the size of Cleveland. What, I wonder, would be the reaction if each new policy were named

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Manos’ alleged crime is a bitter betrayal

In early December of 2009, about a week after four police officers were killed, I worked a shift in Lakewood. Like many other cops, I had shown up to support my shell-shocked colleagues and to allow them some time off to grieve. In reality, we all were drawn to the Lakewood station by our need to make sense of the tragedy, to talk through the hurt, and to begin the healing process among friends and colleagues.

Between calls for service we spent most of the day outside the station, mingling with a large crowd of people who, like us, were

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Virginia Tech continues to teach us human nature

Almost three thousand miles separates us from recent events at Virginia Tech, yet the irony is as palpable as the chill in the air.

Within minutes of a fatal shooting on this cursed campus last Thursday, officials sounded a school alarm and inundated students’ cell phones with texted news and updates.

The nature of the event itself was painfully reminiscent: A lone subject approaches a police officer, shoots him and then runs away. For those of us living in the Puget Sound area, it is a reminder of the six police officers slain in a similar unprovoked fashion between October,

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