End of Watch: April 2012

Let's remember the 7 officers who lost their lives this month & continue to improve basic officer safety awareness

 


 

Dale Stockton | Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Seven officers died during the month of April, bringing the toll for the year to 34 officers. Although 34 officers is a terrible and irreplaceable loss, it's a dramatic improvement over years past. In fact, you’ll have to go back more than 50 yearsto 1959before you’ll find a January through April period that comes in lower than this year and that’s in spite of a devastating loss of 17 officers during January. Perhaps most remarkable is that the last time we had a February, March and April period this low was 1943, almost 70 years ago!

Every loss during April was tragic and we owe it to each of them to learn from their actions so that others may live. We all have a responsibility to improve officer safety, both individually and across the profession.
 
Let us remember and honor those who have died in the line of duty during April. On behalf of Law Officer, I extend condolences to every coworker, family member and agency that  have experienced a loss.   
 
Austin (Texas) PD
EOW: Friday, April 6, 2012
Cause of Death: Gunfire
Officer Padron was shot and killed after responding to a store on a report of an intoxicated shoplifter. Upon arrival, a struggle ensued with the suspect who produced a small handgun and shot Padon in the vest and neck.
 
Norfolk County (Mass.) Sheriff's Office
EOW: Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Cause of Death: Motorcycle collision
He was killed when his department motorcycle struck another vehicle while enroute to a funeral detail. He was thrown from his motor and run over by another vehicle.
 
North Carolina Department of Public Safety
EOW: Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Cause of Death: Fall
He died as the result of injuries sustained two days earlier when he fell from a metal staircase at the Mountain View Correctional Institution. He suffered complications after the injury and died at his home.
 
Stanislaus County (Calif.)  Sheriff's Department
EOW: Thursday, April 12, 2012
Cause of Death: Gunfire
He was shot and killed while he and another deputy were serving an eviction notice. The deputies were attempting entry into the residence around 11 a.m. when the subject opened fire with a rifle, striking and killing Deputy Paris and a civilian locksmith who had accompanied them. The suspect barricaded himself inside the residence for several hours before committing suicide.
 
Greenland (N.H.) Police Department
EOW: Thursday, April 12, 2012
Cause of Death: Gunfire
He was shot and killed while serving a drug-related search warrant with a drug task force. A subject in the home opened fire with a rifle, killing Chief Maloney and wounding four other officers. The subject barricaded in the house following the shooting. He and a female were found dead several hours later.

Sgt. Max Dorley

Providence (R.I.) Police Department
EOW: Thursday, April 19, 2012
Cause of Death: Automobile collision
He was killed when his patrol car struck a utility pole on Admiral Street, near Huxley Avenue, as he responded to a disturbance call at approximately 9:20 am. His vehicle left the roadway and struck the pole head-on after he swerved to avoid another vehicle.
 
Choctaw County (Okla.) Sheriff’s Office
EOW: Thursday, April 19, 2012
Cause of Death: Automobile collision
He was killed when his patrol truck collided with another patrol car on US Highway 70 as the two responded to a shots fired call involving a third officer. As the two vehicles neared an intersection, Deputy Hayden began to turn left when his truck was struck by the patrol car, which was traveling behind him. Deputy Hayden's suffered fatal injuries and died at the scene.
 
As of this morning (May 2, 2012), according to our partners at ODMP, here’s where we are compared to last year at this same time:
  • Line of duty deaths – DOWN 49%
  • Gunfire deaths – DOWN 53%
  • Vehicle related deaths – DOWN 32%
We rely on ODMP for the official numbers and I strongly encourage you (especially trainers!) to visit their site because so much can be learned from the LODD summaries that are provided.
 
In spite of our losses, we must continue our efforts to change law enforcement culture and embrace both common sense and safety equipment. We must change the perception that monthly losses will be double digit and that the annual LODD number will come in well over 150 (we’ve averaged more than 150 LODDs over the last twenty years).
 
We know there are officers alive today because they have made the decision to wear their seat belts, wear their armor and drive at speeds reasonable for the circumstances. We have the evidence in real lives saved to prove it. It’s up to everyone of you to continue. Let’s continue improving basic safety awareness and practice common sense so we can send more officers home to their families instead of funeral homes.
 
Remember: Below 100! The time is now! www.Below100.com



Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
print share
 
Author Thumb

Dale StocktonThe editor of Law Officer Magazine, Dale Stockton is a 32-year-veteran of law enforcement.

BROWSE FULL BIO & ARTICLES >

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

 

 

 

Law Officer Survey

LEOs & Drug Policy

The results are in. More than 11,000 sworn LEOs took time out of their busy schedules to tell us what they think about America’s fast-changing drug policy.
More >

 

Get LawOfficer in Your Inbox

Terms of Service Privacy Policy