Police work used to be like driving a sports car. It was exciting, thrilling and pushed the adrenaline through the veins. It was a rush! Many of us old time police officers remember our first foot chase, car chase, and shooting incident. But! Times are a changing…
Nowadays, words will get you fired. Jokes will earn you a civil suit. Honest police work will cost you your job. A car chase, a foot chase, and soon, just the wrong look will deprive you of your chosen profession, AND your livelihood.
Do you see the writing on the wall?
My grandfather was a foot-post guy back in the advent of the outfit. My father often used family money for narcotic buys when department money wasn’t available. I learned my way around the department as well, and after thirty plus years, I am happily retired.
If I was currently on the job, I am positive I would not last one year treading water before I was fired. Indeed, times are a changing…
Ten years ago, I nudged both my sons into taking the Chicago Police test. Being educated and physically fit, they both did well. They both were notified within the same week to attend the police academy.
However, they ended a legacy of 100 years of police work in the Casey family: they both turned down the offer. While the Casey legacy came to a halt, this was the best week of my life. That’s because, I saw the writing on the wall. Police work is dead, and anyone who does real police work is going to be sacrificed in the name of politics.
Recently, a Chicago police officer shot and killed a thirteen-year-old offender. The media manipulated the story and doctored video for the nightly news. The newspapers cherry-picked still photos to grace the front pages. The mayor called the boy’s mother and damn near apologized for the death of her (reported missing) son. The local politicians stood in line at the microphones condemning the police killing of a young black boy. Ministers and local leaders denounced the officer as a killer.
But now let’s consider the true story as supported by video footage of security cameras, squad car video and officer’s vest cameras…
A thirteen-year-old boy allegedly with gang tattoos and a gang nickname, was observed on video at the location of shots fired. The 7 or 8 shots were picked up on a gunshot alert system. Within 90 seconds a squad car arrived and saw the thirteen-year-old and a twenty-one-year-old duck down an alley. The police pulled into the alley. One officer tackled the older gang member, while his partner chased the younger gang member. The foot chase lasted 19 seconds. The video showed the thirteen-year-old running with a gun in his right hand—and the officer shouting “drop the gun” numerous times.
The officer was within twenty feet when the boy stopped running near an opening in a fence, where he swung around at the officer. The officer shot one time and struck the young gang member in the chest. The officer immediately reported shots fired by the police and called for paramedics. He requested a wound kit from responding officers all the while encouraging the kid to “stay with me.” The officer checked for the wound and instantly started CPR. Within seconds back up arrived and tendered medical assistance to the young man laying fatally wounded in the alley. CPR was taken over and the officer walked a short distance down the alley and crumbled to the ground crying. He knew the kid was dead.
The kid was allegedly a Latin King with tattoos and a gang name. He had gunshot residue on his right hand. He was reported missing, but after he returned home, he took off again. His mother was notified two days after the shooting that the deceased offender was possibly her missing son. She identified him and the news broke the story—with a photo of him with his hands in the air milliseconds before he was shot. And most of the news headlines read something like: Another white Chicago Police Officer kills a thirteen-year-old black boy.
Especially since the video clearly shows every step of this incident. Without the video, the city, news media, and the local politicians and ministers would have lynched this officer for protecting his life based upon what happened in eight-tenths of a second.
Meanwhile, while politicians and the media often dig into the past, and the long history of policing in America, there was no mention about what happened just five years ago, when a young officer faced the identical situation and hesitated—and was shot and killed by a 15-year-old boy.
My family legacy with the Chicago Police Department has come to end, and thanfully so, because who in their right mind would wants to do this thankless, hated, #$&%#@& job?