There may be no more evidence of weak and cowardly leadership than what has occurred in the Louisville (KY) Police Department.
Following a murder and numerous injuries due to an encampment in Jefferson Square Park, Louisville Metro Police Officers were directed to prevent more encampments and other unlawful behavior that would lead to additional dangerous conditions.
Officials made public statements that no overnight camping would be allowed in Jefferson Square Park and laws would be enforced to prohibit further violence and conflict in Louisville.
Louisville Police Officers stood waiting on Saturday to take necessary enforcement action and restore order if needed. At the same time, individuals armed with long rifles and scopes were removed from nearby parking garages.
According to a statement by the Kentucky Fraternal Order of Police, officers were ordered to remove protective equipment, up to and including ballistic-rated helmets and approach an unruly crowd with a “soft-approach.”
This order was preceded with the “threat of immediate suspension.”
This order came after individuals with long guns were encountered in elevated positions.
In previous weeks, officers encountered projectiles thrown at them along with incendiary devices that were used during the riots in Louisville.
Officers were also reportedly shot at on numerous occasions.
In a statement by the FOP, “De-escalation is always the desired outcome; however, in law enforcement we recognize that every encounter may not end that way. Protective equipment has been designed and utilized over the years by law enforcement across the country, safeguarding the men and women we send into harm’s way. Asking our officers to remove their protective equipment for the sake of public image is absolutely shameful and unsafe!”
The FOP continued, “The men and women of the Louisville Metro Police Department have yet again been failed by faulty leadership. I commend the brave brothers and sisters who stood up to this foolish order and I have their back. As a Sheriff, I will always be on the front lines with my deputies. I would never ask them to do something I would not be willing to do myself. Nor would I ask them to walk into a potentially violent situation without protective equipment they have at their disposal. Protecting the public and my deputies is my duty. It seems some LMPD Commanders have abandoned this concept.”