Line Of Duty

Three times in the last week we have seen the death of police officers in the line of duty.  Two of these officers were attacked and killed without provocation while responding to “routine” duties, the third officer was killed while performing back-up duties to a team that was in an apartment building in NYC responding to a home invasion call.  Two police departments and a Sheriffs Department lost good men this week all in acts of senseless violence.

The Virginia Tech officer was completing a routine traffic stop when he was approached by a gunman who opened fire for no apparent reason, instantly killing the officer.  The gunman would eventually turn his weapon on himself but not before bringing back memories of the VA Tech massacre just a few years before.  Fortunately, for the campus they instituted the changes needed and placed the campus into lock down while informing the students and faculty of events that were going on.

Moore County North Carolina Sheriff’s Department lost a long serving peace officer when he went to a home to investigate a trespassing call.  He was met by the man who would take his life, the owner of the home and an Iraq war veteran who was at the far end of some severe emotional issues as a result of his service.  This gunman would also take his own life as a result of the crime.

New York City lost a long-time patrol officer who was responding as back-up to a burglary.  He was shot point-blank in the face by one of two criminals attempting to make an escape while the primary patrol was inside the apartment.  The officers partner was attempting to arrest the second criminal when he realized his partner had been shot, he would let that man go, pursue and eventually capture the murderer.  The captured criminal has a long history of violence and had an outstanding warrant for assault in North Carolina.

There were probably countless other assaults and injuries of lawmen and women during the last week, but these three made the news.  We should take a few minutes and recognize by whatever your personal preference the sacrifices made each and every day by these brave folks and the impact their losses have on their families and the communities.  Without our police, fire and EMS workers doing their jobs our streets would be much more dangerous than they currently are.  Whatever problems people may have with the institutions they work for and represent, they do make our lives better.

As we go through the holidays please remember those that gave their lives in the line of duty and their families.  You never know when you may be the one in need of their service and they never know when they walk out their door each day to perform those services what they may face.

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