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POLICE: Law abiders have no reason to fear police

Letter by Lyle Laws, Puyallup on Sep. 9, 2010 at 5:49 pm with 36 Comments »
September 9, 2010 5:49 pm

After reading Brian O’Neill’s comments about police academy training in which he didn’t seem to try to do anything more than explain how police officers are trained to react in potentially life-threatening situations, I was absolutely amazed at the number of cop haters who came out of the woodwork.

I have never been harassed, bullied or shot at by the police. Maybe it’s because I have never approached an officer while wielding a knife, tried to run over one of them with my vehicle, refused to obey their orders, or walked into a restaurant and snuffed out the lives of a number of them.

Yes, there may be a few bad apples, but the overwhelming majority of law enforcement officers want nothing more than to keep the peace and return home safely after putting their lives on the line for another day.

People who obey the law have virtually no reason to fear or hate the police.

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  1. People who obey the law have virtually no reason to fear or hate the police.

    Not true at all. Records show that law enforcement officials arrest and bring to trial thousands of innocent people every year. It’s worse if you’re black or brown or red.

    Remember the police aren’t there to protect you. The police are garbage men with guns. They are the clean up crew. Rarely do they arrive in time to help but they sure can clean up. Most of the police are better with a broom and mop then a gun.

  2. Maybe Mr. Laws is just lucky. My son was pulled over at 2:00 am driving home from work. The cop said he was pulled over because his eyes looked bloodshot and “squirrelly”. My son’s car windows are tinted. How could the cop see my son’s eyes at 2:00 am?

    Another time he was pulled over while driving home from work at about the same time because the cop “had a feeling” my son had been drinking. He passed the field sobriety tests and the breathalyzer. Twice. The cop called for backup and detained my son because he was sure my son had figured out a way to trick the breathalyzer. He “just knew” my son had been drinking.

    He then told my son that “unfortunately” he would have to let him go, after detaining him for 45 minutes.

    My son’s experiences are not unique. As cities become starved for “revenue”, I will not be surprised if we start seeing more and more people ticketed or arrested for minor, even harmless, deeds.

    If the police and prosecutors want people to not fear them, then they ought to show the same respect for lawful behavior that they expect people to show them.

  3. lovethemountains says:

    camas, you are at least good for a chuckle.

  4. Novelist3 says:

    Lyle,
    Do you think the mother of Christopher Harris would agree with you? I doubt it.

  5. Ummmm…..the woodcarver in Seattle was carrying a legal length knife (and a piece of wood). He was partially deaf so there is a probability that he did not hear officer’s yells to put down his legal art-making tool. And he was killed.

  6. comment_tayter says:

    Power corrupts….

  7. I don’t agree. I have called Tacoma police a couple of times.

    Most of the time you get a professional, but last time I got one that is just plain scary.

    After my last encounter, I’m not sure I want to call the police again.

  8. Lawabiders have no reason to fear police…that’s the wrong attitude. Thanks like saying you wouldn’t mind a strip search cause hey you aren’t hiding anything. There are corrupt police out there, and unfortunately they may now outnumber the good ones.

  9. So sad that someone can form an opinion that cops aren’t to be feared, because they haven’t been subjected personally to the abuse. Lyle-real slow here…..I don’t think anyone is saying that the majority of cops are lying scumbags, substituting their nightstick for lacking or undersized anatomy parts……Its the few dirtbags out there that abuse people under their authority as officers. You can always figure out a way to discount most of their behavior if you want to. But understand-Dougils in Gig Harbor-just had 5 drug dealers convictions overturned, and 225,000.00 in the peoples tax money paid to the drug dealers-because he lied repeatedly(by the way he was only busted down in rank, still is on the force). Look what is happening in Pierce County with McNichols & Montgomery. A felon with a gun will get off because they perjured themselves on the stand. Coy Christopher Clark, WSP arrested March 20, 2010 for suspected DUI? Nothing, was on paid administrative leave last public records request I made to the WSP. He called an on-duty subordinate from King County down to 104th & Canyon to help get him out of the ditch! Read John Batistes(head of WSP) recent letters. YouTube “black thursday & wsp”. You will see WSP crawling through bushes, recording license plates of legally assembled and parked motorcycles for a protest AT THE STATE CAPITOL! Pull you head out, get rid of the bad ones now. I have almost finished a new non-profit LEANBACON(law enforcement accountability nececessitates busting all corrupt officers now).

  10. DubyaFTW says:

    What would happen if law abiders quit paying for the police entirely? Would crime go up? Would criminals be more safe, or less? Would the cop haters on this page feel better, or would they have even more problems?

  11. LibertyBell says:

    Lyle evidently dosent really live in the State of Washington?

    Just go review some recent cases off police misconduct?

    Ever meet the Tacoma Police Chief Brame Lyle?

    Murder, what a Classic, only from the Washington State Police Academy!

    How about the numerious cases of misconduct in Spokane?

    The recent murder of a pastor on his own property is their departments newest classic, on’t get out of your house at night or you coule be killed by some jackass with a Gun Badee and Crown Victoria, just like the Tacoma Chief Brame, where Brains are NOT REQUIED!

  12. LibertyBell says:

    And by the way Lyle;

    Ever read incompentance from our finest, imbeciles in action?

    It’s a requirement from the Washington State Supreme Court that the officer be incompentant, as required with the Americans with Disabilities Act, except for Justice Johnson’s Dissent, where one Judge at least has a few braincells left!

    http://case.lawmemo.com/wa/kitsapco.pdf

  13. Ask an officer the last murder he/she prevented. They don’t know because they haven’t, but they sure are willing to spout statistics that show just their presence is a deterrent to crime. Right. The truth is that police don’t prevent crimes. (Hell, your neighborhood block watch is the real crime prevention unit.) They do however accumulate toys; fast cars, guns, fancy clothes, a cool Lee Marvin hat, all at the taxpayer’s expense.

  14. ValleyTarts says:

    Fife, Orting and Black Diamond. Three infamous predatory Police Departments. 40 years of revenue generation. (And no, I have never had a ticket from any of them).

  15. LibertyBell says:

    Everyone knows Lyle Laws knows absolutly nothing about our local finest?

    Just read this paper, it’s the regular Headline news, from Sheriff Janovich’s great Federal Prison Term to Chief Brames Murder Case, it been going on forever!

    http://www.thenewstribune.com/2010/05/27/1203198/deputy-killed-in-laws-for-meddling.html

  16. ratujack says:

    Los Angeles having street riots over the past 4 nites because LAPD shot a man with a knife. TPD just blew a man away on 6th ave on Highlands Hill at a bus stop. No..one person hurt but cops blew him away with 7 shots. Witnesses are not siding with the police. We are lucky we have no riots. I think we are in a Police State mentality because of these killings by police. Training please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  17. LibertyBell says:

    Training Please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    You got it, from the White House!

    http://www.thenewstribune.com/2010/09/09/1334483/father-says-he-warned-army-of.html

  18. Wow!
    All these commenters cause me to think there may be some police officers who either have difficulty accepting constant danger or are not perfect.

    Perhaps, we would be better off without police.
    Neighborhood watch could take our calls instead of using the 9-1-1 system. This would also keep us free from being harassed when driving drunk.

  19. Isn’t it sad how just 9 months ago we were all very supportive of our police officers and sheriff deputies, and now it seems we’ve forgotten how these brave men and women put their lives on the line for us every day?

    I know there is not one officer out there that is looking to and wanting to take another humans life. We yell and scream if they aren’t there at our beck and call. We complain if they stop us for what we see as no reason. An officer has to have probable cause to stop or detain anyone. That probable cause may be as small as a burned out tail light or erratic driving, but it is still cause.

    These men and women have a very thankless job, but they aren’t looking to be thanked or they’d have picked another profession. They rarely meet people who are having a good day, they meet people who are having one of the worst days of their life, tragic and/or unhappy. About half the people they meet on a call don’t want to see them there, but they are protecting you and me in one form or another. So if that taints them a bit, if they aren’t the nicest to you (and I know that sometimes they aren’t, and you wouldn’t be if you knew that you were hated just by the uniform you wore), please be understanding.

    And don’t run around in public wielding a knife, and then refuse to put it down. If either of those guys had killed an innocent bystander you would be angry that the officers didn’t do more to protect us. You can’t have it both ways.

  20. bandit101 says:

    I cannot believe there are so many idiotic people that hate the police. Oh wait!!! I can believe it. I saw one yahoo in here that starts his name with the word “beer”. What does THAT tell ya? No appreciation whatsoever for what the police face every single day on their job. Most of these cop bashers in here would probably wet their pants in half of the circumstances those people face every day. Grow up! Get a life! Mr Laws is 100% correct. Law abiders have nothing to worry about.

  21. edtrish, Different times. In the former case, police were gunned down while drinking coffee. In the case of the Seattle wood carver, he was gunned down for being homeless, minority, and not be able to hear the pipsqueak of a cop’s instructions. In 3 cases of men with knives being gunned down, in the last 2 weeks, each case:

    1. Cop was more than jumping distance away from the victim
    2. No civilians were within danger
    3. Cops shot and killed the victim within 50 seconds of arriving on scene

  22. MarksonofDarwin says:

    Sure…that old song and dance.

    “If you question police actions and tactics, then you should never call them”

    Never gets old, does it?

    Police may have a dangerous job, but it falls to #12 when compared to other dangerous jobs. They fall behind Fishermen (#1) Loggers (#2) and even sanitation workers. (#5)

    One may argue that they are dealing with other citizens who may have a screw loose. I’ll buy that….to a point.
    That’s why they are given HUGE amounts of latitude when their actions come under scrutiny. That’s all well and good, but doesn’t tell the entire story….

    When there is an “us vs. them” attitude amoung police officers, then the public at large will start pushing back…that’s what we’re seeing now.
    Unless you are lucky enough to be born into police privilege, or happen to hold a position in the force, or work in some other capacity that puts you in close contact….you are perceived to be a “pre-criminal” by police, and it’s their job to ferret out your many misdeeds.

    There is the problem ladies and gents….and you have brought it upon yourselves….

  23. It’s easy to spot those who colored between the lines in grade school and now passively accept that the police are near-gods. Cops come in all varieties some good, some bad, but most are mediocre. Their prime function is to generate revenue for their parent organization. Actually fighting crime scares them. Except for the killers and crazies that get a badge.

    Those that colored between the lines forget that the police work for us and we set the rules not the other way around.

  24. edtrish, my opinion is no different today than it was 9 months ago. I know people who have been falsely arrested by the police, one who received a concussion that he had to pay for, and ended up having to take plea deals because they couldn’t afford to fight it. That’s how cops and the DAs get their points. Arrest people who can’t fight. The recent rash of shootings I attribute to the recent cop killings. Now cops aren’t waiting…anything a possible suspect does is a considered life threatening. And they (cops) are getting away with it which will only lead to more abuse of power.

    I used to respect all cops. Not any more.

  25. BlaineCGarver says:

    I don’t “hate” cops. I really don’t think any rational person does. I DO think that recently they have shot too soon and made mistakes. When mistakes take lives, the people demand answers. That”s all…no hate here.

  26. 1) Most officers are good people that are well intended
    2) Robo-Cams are replacing cops as revenue generators
    3) Attorneys are over represented in law schools and phone books
    4) Plea bargaining is an evil sin for lazy judges and $ motivated lawyers
    5) Nanny-state revenue-generators criminalize normal behavior: bicycle helmet,
    seat belt etc. that should be a personal decision, not a state ‘crime’ $104-124
    6) A defensive weapon in hand is worth more than a dispatcher on the phone
    7) An officer’s experiences will dictate their decision making
    8) We citizens (not subjects) have the God-given (not state approved) right to
    self defense
    9) Never point or advance towards an officer with a weapon in hand
    10)There are always at least three sides to every story…

  27. madmike272 says:

    Interesting to see the usual crowd posting repeated rants!

  28. Interesting that someone with the screen name “bandit” would see fit to criticize my screen name on a thread about law enforcement…..especially since I was just reiterating the facts of the recent case in Seattle.

  29. WarmNfuzziOne says:

    With the exception of one officer in Steilacoom, I’ve never been harrassed by police when I didn’t deserve it.

    I’ve no concern over being shot by police because I’m not a dirty criminal, nor am I a nutter who is going to walk toward police with a knife in my hand, my hand raised and showing a crazed look in my eyes…that’s not my thing.

    Decent people who contribute to society have nothing to fear from the police. Criminals and dangerous people do and that’s the way it should be.

    Compare the quality of people involved when a police officer’s family is seen to the shrilly screaming, on the dole people who are identified as the family members of some person killed by the police when attacking them.

    Who are better people?

  30. madmike272 says:
    September 10, 2010 at 1:24 pm

    “Interesting to see the usual crowd posting repeated rants!”

    You must be new here.

  31. @ Polago

    ;-)

  32. ValleyTarts says:

    The police should not be surprised at the recent skepticism of their demanded adoration. A year ago we had very appropriate parades and processions for cops shot on duty. Then it got out of hand. A major almost “state funeral” for a cop who drove into an elk, and most recently cops who simply died in their own home which caught fire.
    Major public memorials should be appropriate, even for cops.

  33. Lyle- I also have never been harassed by the cops. I’ll bet if we formed a club we’d have millions of members.

  34. WarmNfuzziOne – you have no concern because, whatever. Yours is the very attitude that allows those in power to abuse that power. Just because you have never personally had problems with police abuse doesn’t mean it never happens.

  35. People who obey the law have virtually no reason to fear or hate the police

    Except, of course, for any occasion when they are confronted by the police, then they must do exactly what they officers tell them to do in slow, controlled calm matter so as to not give any sign that they are disobeying the man with the gun or making any sudden actions that might make the man in the gun empty 7 rounds into the law-obeying citizen.

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