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  • 05/13/2020 9:49 PM | Troy Mondine (Administrator)

    A police funeral is one place where officers come together as one, regardless of the color of our uniform, our state or country of origin

    May 13, 2019

    PoliceOne

    By Sgt. Tim McGuckin, PoliceOne Contributor

    Your day starts as many do, you go through your normal routines just as you would most days when you are preparing for duty. Your uniform is pressed; collar brass and commendation bars are shined. Today you aren’t going on patrol, though. You are preparing for a funeral – a police funeral.

    You are heading out to honor a fallen officer whom you may not even know or have ever heard of. You are taking the time to honor someone who sacrificed everything to uphold the oath they took. You will show the officer’s family they are not alone in this loss. It is shared by all of us and their loved one’s sacrifice means something that is very important.

    PROFOUND PAIN

    When we arrive at a service we see dozens, and sometimes hundreds, of different law enforcement agencies assembled for the memorial. We all come together as one, regardless of the color of our uniform, our state or country of origin or the type of agency.

    We introduce ourselves to new friends and have conversations as if we have known each other for years. It’s a unique bond few professions experience.

    We laugh with one another before the service begins, but when called to attention we all remember why we are there: to honor an officer who gave all and made the ultimate sacrifice.

    MENTALLY, PHYSICALLY AND EMOTIONALLY BOUND TOGETHER

    Weather doesn’t always cooperate with services, either. We will stand in the pouring rain, bitter cold or sweltering heat. Regardless of the conditions, we all stand firm for the same purpose: to honor the fallen.

    As we stand shoulder to shoulder with our friends, family and colleagues, we see them experiencing a wide range of emotions. These emotions are contagious, and we find ourselves, unknowingly or uncontrollably, experiencing them too.

    We sometimes do this for someone we have never met. We watch and listen as family and friends tell stories about their loved one and reflect on a hero’s life. You can’t help but empathize with them as they share their memories.

    When the service ends, we return to formation and then proceed to our vehicles as we begin the drive to the officer’s final resting place. On the way there, all the police cars have their emergency lights activated. We drive through towns and villages seeing scores of people lining the route. They show their respect by holding signs, banners and waving flags. Some of them salute the procession as it drives by and you can see the appreciation, admiration and sadness on their faces.

    HEART-WRENCHING GRAVESIDE SERVICE

    When we arrive at the cemetery, we get in formation and stand at attention. We salute the officer’s casket as bagpipes play, salutes rise, tears fall, and the officer’s final radio call is played. This is the last time they will be called upon by radio.

    It is an emotional time as well as everyone in attendance knows it could have been them.

    After the funeral, we sometimes gather and continue to share stories of our fallen hero. We laugh at the funny and strange things they have experienced, and we cry at the realization that they will never again be physically by our side at the next roll call. We honor their service to others, their dedication to the oath they swore, their self-sacrifice and the memories they leave behind.

    TIME-TESTED QUESTIONS

    One of the questions I get from non-law enforcement friends is, “Why do you go to funerals for people you don’t know?” It’s simple: to honor a brother or sister who gave everything to a cause greater than themselves.

    Over the course of my career I have had the honor and privilege of attending the funerals of far too many fallen police officers. I’ve traveled out of state on several occasions. I’ve been alongside masses of officers who had traveled, as well. We are all there to honor someone they likely have never met.

    These men and women gathered to honor a brother or sister and to represent the strength and solidarity of the thin blue line.


  • 04/27/2020 10:36 PM | Troy Mondine (Administrator)

    “Medical personnel were there for us on 9/11 and we want to be there for them today,” said Officer Eric Brozek

    Today at 12:42 PM

    By Larry Higgs
    NJ Advance Media Group, Edison, N.J.

    HACKENSACK, NJ — When Port Authority police officers asked how they could help doctors, nurses and paramedics on the front lines of the coronavirus fight, they might not have expected to become a cleaning crew.

    But this is a dirty job being done with love.

    On Friday, off-duty Port Authority police officers spent the gray day decontaminating ambulances, paramedics’ trucks and even the boots and pants of emergency medical service workers after they delivered patients to Hackensack Hospital.

    “Medical personnel were there for us on 9-11 (at the World Trade Center) and we want to be there for them today,” said Officer Eric Brozek, who works at the Holland Tunnel police command.

    The job is important to make sure the COVID-19 virus goes no further. Officers use spray equipment to decontaminate ambulance interiors, and outside door handles, while EMS crews are in the hospital. They treated stretchers when they returned, Brozek said.

    Officers are also offering to decontaminate employee shuttle buses and doctors’ and nurses’ personal vehicles, so they don’t have to worry about taking coronavirus home to their families, he said.

    “We will do whatever it takes to help the medical professionals courageously battling COVID-19 on the front lines,” said Paul Nunziato, President, Port Authority Police Benevolent Association. “They are saving lives. They have never let us down. It is our duty, desire and citizenship to come to their aid.”

    Port Authority police are about to get some back-up from Bergen County Sheriff’s Officers, who plan to decontaminate medical workers’ cars Saturday morning as they leave from working the third shift or arrive for the morning shift, said Derek Sands, a Sheriff’s Office spokesman.

    “We decided this was a way to give back to the medical community. They have families and they don’t want to bring the virus home with them,” he said. “This is our thank you.”

    Starbucks teamed up with the officers to provide coffee for the medical workers to drink while their vehicles are being decontaminated.

    If it works out, Sheriff’s officers plan to expand the effort to other Bergen County hospitals, he said.

    ©2020 NJ Advance Media Group, Edison, N.J.


  • 02/10/2020 4:56 PM | Brandon Ledbetter (Administrator)

    Happy Birthday to the Texas System Police Association! We have made it 10 YEARS!!! 2-10-2020. We could not have done it without the support and dedication from our members. We have always supported our members and we pledge to continue our mission in Campus Policing. Thank You for the support and here is to the next 10 years and beyond.


  • 10/08/2019 10:21 PM | Brandon Ledbetter (Administrator)

    We have NEW TSPA branded merchandise in our online store. Check out the new items and help support the Texas System Police Association.  https://mytspa.org/Store

  • 09/25/2019 7:00 AM | Brandon Ledbetter (Administrator)

    We are excited to announce that the Combined Law Enforcement Associations of Texas, CLEAT Executive Board approved our Affiliation request at the Annual Conference.

    While at the conference, our Executive Board Members received quality training to better our association and move us forward. More info coming soon about the benefits!



  • 09/25/2019 6:52 AM | Brandon Ledbetter (Administrator)

              The Texas System Police Association (TSPA) recently commemorated the week of September 16-20, 2019 as Public Safety Officer Appreciation Week. Our Public Safety Officers are hard-working, highly trained individuals who are often our state’s first responders on the campuses of most Universities, College Campuses, and ISD Campuses. These individuals deter crime, lead evacuations, work closely with campus law enforcement officers, and are consistently vigilant int heir efforts to keep faculty, staff, and students safe in schools across Texas.

              Today, a security presence has become the expectation, thus the great work of our Public Safety Officers across the country can easily be taken for granted. Therefore, recognizing our Public Safety Officers are so important. Public Safety Officer Appreciation Week should be used to recognize their contributions and profile the many roles Public Safety Officers fill.

                    UT System Director of Police Michael Heidingsfield offered a note of appreciation regarding the week.

                    “I applaud the initiative of the Texas System Police Association in their efforts to not only recognize the critical work of our Public Safety Officers every day of the week, but to establish the week of September 16, 2019 – September 20, 2019 as Public Safety Officer Appreciation Week. On a regular basis I am impressed by the work of our Public Safety Officers who not only serve as our ambassadors to the campus communities they serve, but also detect criminal behavior, save lives, and assist in campus security.

                    The partnership between our sworn and civilian staff members is an acknowledgement of the combined efforts we bring to our commitment to ensure public safety. Thank you all!”


  • 08/13/2019 12:31 AM | Troy Mondine (Administrator)

    Start from the premise that every person who reports a sexual assault deserves a thorough, unbiased investigation

    Aug 6, 2019

      By Catherine Johnson

      The scene of a rape can be very dynamic with a lot of moving parts. Officers are responsible for ensuring the scene is safe, determining if the victim requires medical treatment, preventing the crime scene from being contaminated, and attempting to identify and apprehend the offender(s). All of this must be done while trying to approach the victim in a trauma-informed way and providing constant updates to the chain of command.

      In addition to these factors, it is common for officers to have a pre-conceived idea of what they believe occurred. This pre-conceived idea can be as a result of their own bias, or the bias of the officer(s) who trained them. As a result, things may be missed or simply ignored. This can give victims the feeling they are not believed, and thus that their case is not going to be handled properly. When victims do not feel believed or think their case is not being handled correctly, they may withdraw cooperation resulting in offenders not being held accountable. This can also fuel the officer’s initial bias.

      The scene of a rape can be very dynamic with a lot of moving parts. (Photo/Pixabay)

      I have had the privilege of talking to and working with criminal justice professionals and survivors from all over the world. The problems, challenges and issues surrounding rape investigations are strikingly similar regardless whether they are happening in Ghana or Kansas City. Based on my experience working with both survivors and investigators, it is imperative for investigators to keep an open mind and leave their own biases behind while recognizing what they say and do can impact the direction a case goes, and how the victim is left to feel in their wake. Here are 10 best practices for successful investigations:

      1. Every case, every time

      Investigate each case you are given. Don’t cut corners. Start from the premise that every person who reports a sexual assault deserves a thorough, unbiased investigation. It should not matter if the victim is a wealthy person in a nice home, or a homeless person living under a bridge. Both cases should be given due diligence and handled with the same professionalism and degree of seriousness.

      2. Conduct a victim-centered, offender-focused investigation

      To be victim-centered is to focus on understanding the impact of the trauma and making sure their needs are met.

      One simple way to do this is to ensure the victim has the option of having a victim advocate present during their interview(s). Victim advocates can be one of the best assets in your investigation as they can provide the emotional support needed which allows the investigator to focus on the facts and difficult questions. Victim advocates can also answer questions about victim’s compensation, counseling options and other resources available to them that are not known to the investigator.

      To be offender-focused means focusing on the offender’s actions versus only focusing on the victim’s behavior. For example, if the victim reports she was picked up walking on the street at 2:00 am, it is understood you need to ask why they victim was walking at that time. But it is equally important to also investigate why the offender was out at 2:00 am, why they stopped to pick the victim up and why they committed the crime the victim reported. This leads to including the following types of questions in the sex crime investigation:

      • What kind of criminal history does the offender have? The offender may not have a history of sexual assault, but may have a history of soliciting prostitution, physical assault on women and burglary. Depending on the allegations made, the offender could be increasing their violence.
      • Have there been other reports of people being picked up and victimized in the area that matches this victim’s account? Could this be a serial rapist targeting a vulnerable population? Are there other victims who have not come forward for fear of not being believed?
      • What did the offender have in their car? Is there a weapon or items commonly used to bind a person such as handcuffs, duct tape or rope? Do they have child safety locks engaged which would prevent a person from exiting the vehicle?

      These questions are obviously focused on the scenario above, and many more could be listed, but the intent is to demonstrate what it means to be offender focused.

      3. Begin with the end in mind

      I often hear law enforcement officers complain about the prosecutor’s office being “lazy” and “not doing their job.” Prosecutors often complain officers’ investigations are poor and incomplete. I learned early in my career that prosecutors can only prosecute what they are given. Therefore, if they are given a case that only had the bare minimum completed, then they may not be able to take it to trial.

      It’s critical to talk to your prosecutors when they decline a case. Ask what needs to be done to make the case more prosecutable, then when you do your next investigation include everything they suggested. Sometimes the answer will be nothing. If the facts do not prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt, then the case will not move forward. However, if an investigator begins to look through the lens of beyond a reasonable doubt, and completes a thorough, unbiased investigation, the facts or an explanation for challenging facts, often exists.

      Look for corroboration of statements made by victims, witnesses and suspects. Leave no stone unturned.

      4. Keep an open mind

      In my experience, the more outrageous the story the more likely it actually occurred. Understand most allegations of rape are not false, made for revenge or occur because a victim’s feelings are hurt. If you assume something couldn’t have happened the way it was described, or assume the victim is not credible or the offender couldn’t possibly be a rapist then you will miss important evidence and facts because you will be working to prove your theory instead of working to prove what actually occurred.

      However, if you start by believing the victim and let the facts drive the investigation, you end up with more evidence that means more thorough case files that will result in more offenders being held accountable.

      5. Avoid developing theories about what occurred before having all of the facts present 

      As mentioned above, going into an investigation with an idea of what you think occurred can result in efforts to prove a theory versus being open to all facts. For example, if you look at a woman with a history of prostitution and assume her report is as a result of a lack of payment for services, you may miss the serial rapist who is targeting that specific population.

      Offenders choose their victims, and women being used in prostitution or other vulnerable populations such as drug-addicted, homeless and those with untreated mental illness are often perfect victims in the eyes of an offender because they believe the victim won’t fight back, won’t report or if they do report will be seen as less than credible.

      Look at challenging facts through the lens of an offender. Could the challenging facts actually be vulnerability exploited?

      6. Remember that offenders choose their victims

      When talking to the victim, they will give you indicators of what an offender may see as a vulnerability. For example, if a victim tells you they were extremely inebriated that could be considered a vulnerability. The next question may be, how inebriated was the suspect? Was this a case of two people who were both drunk and engaged in sexual activity, or was this a case of an offender who was in control using the victim’s inebriation and inability to fight back, perceived lack of credibility and possible inability to remember the crime?

      This analysis practice can be used in other areas of vulnerability as well.

      7. Listen to the victim with the intention of hearing and understanding them – not for the purpose of responding

      Be fully present during the interview. Listening is actually the most difficult part of an interview because one must shut down that innate sense of wanting to respond, or the thoughts of what needs to be done next.

      By actively shutting down your other thoughts and focusing completely on what the victim is saying, the victim will feel they are being heard. By being fully engaged and focusing completely on what the victim is saying investigators may also learn about additional witnesses, evidence or explanations for something they may not have previously understood. The devil is in the details.

      It is often the smallest detail, that initially does not seem important that can be the tipping point in the investigation.

      8. Be trauma-informed

      Understand trauma and how it relates to a victim’s ability to recall events. Individuals who have experienced trauma may not be able to relay information in a linear fashion and may forget (or simply not have a memory of) certain things. When practical, give the traumatized person 24 to 48 hours before requiring a full statement. Let them provide the information in the way that they remember.

      This best practice enables you to get more robust statements, and it allows for fewer inconsistencies.

      9. Realize that inconsistencies are not necessarily intentional lies

      As stated above, trauma impacts a person’s ability to recall events. The gaps created in their memory may never return or they may take several days to return. Do not assume because the victim changes the order of events, adds a detail previously omitted or shares additional information they are lying. In some cases, it is trauma that explains the change, and, in some cases, it is because the investigator has gained the victim’s trust and they now feel safe to share the information. For example, a man initially reports a robbery to law enforcement but later discloses a rape. The rape was not disclosed because the victim was lying, but because the victim felt safe with the investigator.

      Take the information without judgement and continue to investigate.

      10. Consider what success looks like in your investigations

      Success is not necessarily measured by the closure of cases or rate of prosecution, but instead can be measured by victims feeling they were heard, taken seriously and supported.

      Ultimately, be the investigator you would want for yourself or your loved one.


    • 08/13/2019 12:29 AM | Troy Mondine (Administrator)

      Following violent protests, the chief of police in Portland suggested that the city ban the wearing of masks during protests

      Aug 9, 2019

      Following violent protests that left several people injured—including a conservative journalist who was badly beaten by protesters, the chief of police in Portland, Oregon suggested that the city pass a law that bans the wearing of masks during protests. Citing the fact that other states have laws prohibiting the wearing of masks during the commission of a crime, Portland Police Chief Danielle Outlaw suggested that the city institute the restrictions on masks at protests and demonstrations.

      The Oregon ACLU opposes the proposal—they do tend to side politically with the people who tend to wear masks at rallies—but others in both government and private sectors see some benefit to the idea. In this podcast segment, Jim and Doug discuss whether or not such a proposal would even pass in the City of Roses.


    • 08/13/2019 12:24 AM | Troy Mondine (Administrator)

      Officers stopped the suspect moments before he entered a bar

      Aug 5, 2019

        Dayton Daily News, Ohio

        DAYTON, Ohio — The Dayton police officers who engaged a shooter in the Oregon District early Sunday morning have been identified.

        Video: https://youtu.be/FquDIetgiu4

        Video above shows the officers stop the suspect moments before he would have entered Ned Pepper’s bar.

        The six officers are:

        Sgt. William C. Knight, sworn in Feb. 14, 1997

        Officer Brian Rolfes, sworn in April 8, 2016

        Officer Jeremy Campbell, sworn in Aug. 5, 2016

        Officer Vincent Carter, sworn in April 8, 2016

        Officer Ryan Nabel, sworn in April 8, 2016

        Officer David Denlinger, sworn in April 8, 2016

        It is not known which officer shot and killed the suspected shooter, Connor Betts, 24 of Bellbrook.

        All the officers are on administrative leave, which is protocol for officer-involved shootings.

        Nine people were killed during the incident and 27 were injured.

        ©2019 the Dayton Daily News (Dayton, Ohio)


      • 08/13/2019 12:19 AM | Troy Mondine (Administrator)

        It marks his first public appearance since being shot multiple times outside his home

        Yesterday at 11:52 AM

        By Phil Davis
        The Baltimore Sun

        BALTIMORE — The off-duty sergeant who was shot multiple times near his home in Northeast Baltimore on Thursday is awake and speaking, saying in a new video, “I’ll be back.”

        Appearing in a YouTube video, Sgt. Isaac Carrington, 43, speaks only briefly from his hospital bed, telling the audience “I love you all” before saying the police code signal “10-8,” meaning he is an in-service officer.


        Video:  https://youtu.be/nNIPYs-Ta1M


        “I’ll be back,” Carrington says, before waving at the camera.

        It marks his first public appearance since being shot multiple times outside his home in the 5600 block of Summerfield Ave. in Frankford.

        Baltimore police said Carrington was shot around 3:30 p.m. Thursday while he was off-duty and hanging out in front of his home with a neighbor.

        The department said a car pulled up in front of the two and at least one masked man carrying a gun tried to rob them. Police said Harrington and his neighbor ran in opposite directions and the masked man chased after Carrington, shooting him multiple times.

        The sergeant was taken to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in critical condition as police scoured the city in search of the suspects.

        The Baltimore City Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 3 tweeted just after noon Saturday that his condition had been upgraded to “stable” and that he was able to squeeze the hands of hospital staff.

        Police took two people into custody Saturday after the department said a vehicle similar to the one used by the suspects was located in southwest Baltimore County.

        However, in the video, Police Commissioner Michael Harrison says the department is still looking for the shooter.

        “He still has a long way to go, but our prayers have been answered," Harrison said. “And now we all have to rally around getting him healed and making sure we find who did this to hold them accountable.”

        ©2019 The Baltimore Sun


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