In The Line Of Duty

Deputy Matt Deputy Sheriff
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I sit here typing this, trying to collect my thoughts as I peer at the monitor with tired, sore eyes. For those who follow my Facebook page, you know what happened, why I am having trouble composing myself, why my eyes are red and puffy.

Friday morning, shortly after the incident started, I received a phone call from a friend notifying me of it, and I quickly fired up the online scanners to see what I could learn. As it continued to unfold, I posted a series of running updates, and spilled my emotions more than a few times as I listened to almost the entire series of events unfold live on the scanner.

Friday, in Sacramento, CA, the city where I was born and raised, some lawless, gutless person shot and killed a deputy. It was a cowardly, completely unprovoked attack. After killing that deputy, a husband and father of two, the suspect went on a crime spree, during which he shot a citizen in the head when he refused to be carjacked. The suspect carjacked another person and fled in the stolen vehicle to a neighboring county.

Once there, he attacked two unsuspecting deputies from a different agency, killing one of them and injuring the other. He stole a patrol car and crashed it blocks later, where he was forced to flee on foot. He eventually broke into a home, and thankfully the resident was able to flee uninjured upon seeing the cowardly suspect breaking in. The murderer hid inside the home until just before local SWAT teams were about to enter. Knowing he had been located and trapped, the suspect slithered out on his stomach and surrendered.

The cops at the scene, choking back every instinct in their body to beat this man into an unrecognizable pulp, did their duty and put him in handcuffs, took him to the hospital to be treated for his injuries, and safely escorted him to a jail cell, where he will sit for years awaiting trial.

While in jail, he will soak up millions of taxpayer dollars as we pay for his food, clothing and shelter, treat his every minor medical malady, and provide for his defense attorney and investigators. Additionally, and even more disturbingly, this waste of skin will now be seen as a hero to his fellow prisoners, and even worse, he is also a hero to some people who walk freely among us.

I listened to this event unfold. I screamed at the radio, I followed the events on Google maps, and I spoke to relatives who live less than a mile from where the suspect was finally apprehended. I mashed my keyboard and wiped tears from my eyes as I poured my emotions out onto my Facebook page, while I sat at my desk, a giant ball of anger, sorrow and adrenaline, feeling utterly useless as I listened to my brothers in blue searching for the criminal who just destroyed two families, robbed six children of their fathers, and shattered the peace in two entire counties.

While posting updates to this incident on Facebook, some classless individual managed to find his way to my page and posted the following comment:

“Andy Gray: Actually you so called Leo’s brought this upon your selfs as the number of officers violating our constitutional rights is out of hand!!!! The people have had enough only more will come”

Sadly, that train of thought is on the rise in this country. The overwhelming negative coverage that Law Enforcement receives in the media fuels those perceptions. The same media who are reporting this very incident as “Gunman arrested after allegedly killing two California deputies.” Did you get that, allegedly…

No amount of logic, including tons of overwhelming statistics, can break through that fog fueled by biased media reporting topped off by websites like Cop Block, who spew hatred and distrust backed by completely bogus statistics. Just the fact that someone would think what “Andy Gray” said bothers me, but the fact that he felt it appropriate to post that on the page of someone mourning the loss of two murdered “family members,” hurts my faith in humanity.

Thankfully, the outpouring of support received from hundreds of other people more than makes up for one idiot. The sad part is, there are plenty of others under the same delusion that there is some giant conspiracy in which law enforcement is the evil oppressor, but that is the topic of another post.

My extended family lost two brothers yesterday. Deputy Danny Oliver, of the Sacramento Sheriff’s Department was a 47 year old, 15 year veteran on the department. He was a husband and father of two. Deputy Michael David Davis Jr, of the Placer County Sheriff’s Department was also a husband, and was a father of four. In the strangest stoke of horrible luck, he was killed 26 years to the day from the day his father, a Riverside County Deputy Sheriff, was also killed in the line of duty.

A friend of mine, who is a Deputy for the Sacramento Sheriff’s Department, wrote the following Friday:

“Woke up today to phone calls from crying men, stronger than I, sobbing as they drove in to get suited up to catch/end a worthless piece of s–t.

“They put on their guns, hid their emotions and caught him. They followed the rules. They didn’t use excessive force, though I’m sure the urge was there. The suspect squirmed out of the house and surrendered because he knows cops do the right thing.

“I’m proud to be in this family and my heart is heavy.

“Danny, you will be missed. PCSO Deputy Davis, I wish I met you.”

I too am proud to be in this family. A family of men and women who honor the oath they took, who run toward the sound of gunfire, who put themselves between innocent people and the murderous cowards such as this. While today I still weep for the loss of my brothers, for their children who will never again get to see their fathers, for the wives who will never again feel the embrace of their spouse, I will again don the uniform and badge, and will stand the line with the rest of my brothers and sisters, who are also feeling the very same loss, yet stand that line every day in order to keep our communities all across this country safe.

Rest in peace brothers. We will take it from here.

Originally posted at The Bang Switch.

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Deputy Matt