Shot. Fear of what could happen if the arrest of a black male goes wrong has cops in 70 percent black Baltimore refusing to get out of their squad cars. [Report: Baltimore Police ‘Afraid To Arrest Anyone’ Out Of Fear Of Political Backlash, Townhall.com, August 26, 2019]:
The Washington Post reports that an anonymous survey of 68 Baltimore police officers titled, “Feedback from the Field: A Summary of Focus Groups with Baltimore Police Officers” shows that law enforcement in the city feel low morale, confusion, and lack of support due to the new requirements. They feel the city’s fear of media and political backlash is making their jobs more difficult. “I don’t feel pride for having 20 uses of force,” one officer said while describing the “necessary techniques against an arrestee who tries to ‘wiggle’ out of handcuffs must be documented,” according to WaPo. “Now, I am afraid to arrest anyone because I don’t want to have so many uses of force [documented] against me,” that same officer said. Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison echoed these claims, saying his men and women have told him similar concerns. “They expressed their challenges with morale and working conditions,” he said. “Some are reluctant for fear of getting hurt or getting in trouble for making mistakes.” The report found that officers feel that as “the Department has been scrutinized by the media and community over the past several years, the command staff and the City have become more concerned with the Department’s image than supporting officers and boosting staff morale.” Because of this, it seems like city leaders are “ready to throw police officers under the bus to appease the media and don’t support us even when our actions are appropriate,” according to one anonymous officer. The city’s reforms also require various internal discipline measures if its determined that a police officer used aggressive force. But, because the city can basically determine anything it wants as crossing a line, police officers even refuse to get out of their squad cars.
Chaser. A white cop who did get of his squad car is now dead, murdered by a black career criminal. Illinois State Police Trooper Nick Hopkins was trying to execute a search warrant in East St. Louis, when he got into a gun battle with Christopher Grant. [Second man charged in connection with Illinois trooper shooting, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, August 26, 2019]:
EAST ST. LOUIS — A second man was charged on Monday in connection with the death of Illinois State Police Trooper Nick Hopkins, even as more information came out regarding the criminal past of Christopher R. Grant, charged with shooting Hopkins to death. The St. Clair County state’s attorney said Al Stewart Jr., 19, hid a .40-caliber Glock handgun after the shooting and possessed marijuana with the intent to distribute. Hopkins, 33, of Waterloo was fatally shot about 5:30 a.m. Friday in an exchange of gunfire as an Illinois State Police SWAT team executed a search warrant at a duplex in the 1400 block of North 42nd Street in East St. Louis. The office of St. Clair County State’s Attorney Jim Gomric declined to release the search warrant on Monday. Spokesman Chris Allen, an assistant state’s attorney, said the documents were closed by court order. Stewart and Grant both lived at the duplex. They are the first two charged of three arrested on Friday. Grant, 45, has a criminal record in St. Clair County that includes drug possession in Belleville in 2003 and 2005, being a felon in possession of a gun in 1996, obstructing justice in 1996 and resisting or obstructing a peace officer in Washington Park in 1995. One of the crimes involved Grant selling cocaine to an undercover agent near a school in Belleville in 2003. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to four years in prison. Grant was arraigned on first-degree murder charges on Monday before Judge John O’Gara in St. Clair County, and was being held in the St. Clair County Jail in lieu of $5 million bail. The St. Clair County state’s attorney announced charges against him on Saturday alleging Grant shot Hopkins “with the intent to kill or do great bodily harm.” Stewart was charged on Monday with armed violence, obstructing justice and possession with the intent to distribute cannabis. Hopkins was married, had three young children and had been a trooper for 10 years. He was the first Illinois State Police trooper shot and killed in 30 years and the first Illinois State Police SWAT member to be fatally shot on duty.
Just imagine for a second if Hopkins, the white state trooper, had shot and killed Grant (the black career criminal) during the execution of this search warrant in nearly all-black East St. Louis. This black career criminal would have become a hero in death, with Hopkins getting investigated for any past public displays of racism showing both implicit bias and systemic racism on his part. This is the scenario every white cop in America faces each morning they wake up, knowing an altercation with the wrong black suspect could be the end of their career (or their life). As it is, this story is only news in the metro St. Louis/souther Illinois area.
Rest in peace, State Trooper Hopkins.