Minneapolis is currently the focal point of the latest law enforcement controversy due to the custodial death of George Floyd. Since then, the FBI and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension have launched an investigation. Moreover, four police officers have been fired as a result of the incident.
Nevertheless, protests have begun. Just like past protests, part of the mantra is filled with deception and untruths about American law enforcement. It seems to be par for the course. It hurts my heart when I hear ill-informed individuals crucify the police profession based upon an isolated incident. Police officers handle thousands of arrest situations daily without fanfare or consternation. So I thought I’d try to provide a little perspective to the conversation.
Out of curiosity, I conducted a Google search using “officers shot” as the search criteria. My goal was to see how many times police officers have sustained gunfire in the past three days, about the same time all the talking heads have been focused on Minneapolis. Yes, I am aware that Floyd was not armed with a weapon, nor am I am not trying to implicate him in that way. I’m simply demonstrating the frequent dangers faced by police officers during the performance of their duty. Furthermore, they rarely receive fanfare when things go right, but people want “their head on a platter” when things don’t; like Minneapolis.
Conducting this simple search, I quickly found 10 cases around the country where suspects have fired weapons at officers in the past 72 hours. Additionally, I found four OISs involving suspects using a vehicle as a weapon, three involving a suspect pulling a firearm on police, and one where the suspect charged an officer with a knife, all in the same timeframe. This data is far from complete, yet it only took five minutes using the Internet to find it.
While chaos has broken out in Minneapolis, police officers continue to take gunfire without much of a blip on the screen.
The following excerpts were taken from the opening of each article reporting on gunfire directed at police in the past three days:
- Two men suspected in the weekend (Sunday) shooting of a Monroe police corporal have been arraigned, according to the Monroe County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, reported Law Officer. (Monroe, Mich.)
- A police officer was flown to the hospital after being shot in Anson County Tuesday night, Law Officer reported. (Wadesboro, N.C.)
- A manhunt is underway after a policeman was shot in the 1000 block of Light St. in Federal Hill late Tuesday night and taken to Shock Trauma, Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison said, Baltimore Sun reported. (Baltimore)
- A veteran Tonawanda police detective is in the hospital and a suspect is in custody after a gunman opened fire (Tuesday) on a half dozen officers early this morning, according to WKBW. (Tonawanda, N.Y.)
- Officers fatally shot a man early Tuesday after he opened fire on them at the conclusion of an hours-long SWAT standoff at a Parma home, police said, cleveland.com reported. (Parma, Ohio)
- Three Houston police officers were involved in a fatal shooting (Monday) that left a 38-year-old man dead outside a southeast Houston home overnight. … The officers commanded the man drop his gun, but he refused and fired (at officers), reported KHOU. (Houston)
- The Buffalo Police Department said in a tweet that SWAT Officers were shot at during the execution of a search warrant Monday morning, according to WKBW. (Buffalo)
- Milwaukee police shot a man who is accused of killing a woman outside a Walgreens at North 27th Street and West North Avenue. The shooting happened about 2 p.m. Tuesday. The 51-year-old man who was shot by police had fired at officers when they arrived at the scene, police said, WISN reported. (Milwaukee)
- One person reportedly died in an officer-involved shooting in Flathead County on Sunday night. A release from the Flathead County Sheriff’s Office says a person fired shots from inside the home when deputies arrived to respond to a disturbance with a weapon report. SWAT was also deployed to the location, according to KULR. (Flathead County, Mont.)
- The Mineola Police Department is searching for a man who shot a gun at officers during a police chase Monday night, tylerpaper.com reported. (Mineola, Texas)
There is nothing in this piece commenting on the circumstances in Minneapolis. Regardless of my limited perspective based upon social media video, I believe it’s prudent to wait until the investigation unfolds. Until then, I simply want to remind people that law enforcement is difficult work. Measuring the appropriate level of force takes far more skill than TV/radio hosts will ever appreciate.
So, with a five-minute Google search I was able to find 10 cases involving suspects using gunfire against police officers, and another seven OISs involving guns, vehicles and a knife being used against cops; all of this within the past 72 hours. … But we’ll be talking about Minneapolis for months to come!
UPDATE: On the same afternoon this article was published (Wed. May, 27), Officer Cody Holte was murdered while assisting county deputies who were taking gunfire during an eviction proceeding in Grand Forks, N.D. Read more. In the meantime, “social justice warriors” are getting all the news coverage as they loot, shoot, and burn businesses throughout Minneapolis.
The next day, (Thurs. May 28), a Utah police officer was shot and killed while handling a call of domestic violence. Read more.