President’s Message: Casualties of the war on police

As you see on the cover this issue, we are exploring the war on police. Whether you want to call it defunding, diverting or reimagining, the experiment has proven to be a catastrophe. It has taken countless lives, cost billions of dollars, affected numerous elections and altered tens of thousands of lives.

Some large cities and communities across the country have experienced triple digit increases in crime. Now we know that there were enormous and swift consequences to the entire defund movement. That came as no surprise to any of us in this profession!

With the exception of Newark, we have been lucky here in New Jersey that the defund movement didn’t ever gain much traction. That is not to say that we weren’t affected by the “war.” Take one look at New Jersey’s Marijuana Bill and tell me that was not a direct result of the movement at the time. Charging a law enforcement officer with a third-degree crime for investigating underage marijuana or alcohol possession is absurd. Especially considering that the first two offenses for possession are warnings, and the third offense is a whopping $50 fine

That bill didn’t even tell us how the hell to track the offenses. But they made sure there are criminal penalties against the police. We can go on and discuss the release of 20 years of disciplinary records, but my article is limited to only one page. Besides, somehow the Supreme Court thought that was a good idea too.

If you still don’t think the war on police is being fought right here in New Jersey, ask Hopewell Officers Sara Erwin and Mandy Grey what their thoughts are about that. Some interesting revelations will be coming out soon regarding their case (which was covered extensively in the June issue of NJ Cops Magazine).

A wholly unqualified committee of elected officials that apparently knows more about policing than those in the business will soon cost the Borough of Hopewell a LOT of money and a hearing officer’s decision that will undoubtedly be overturned. I have seen some awful hearing decisions, but I would have to call that one ludicrous. The one thing that is consistent about emotional decisions is that they are always poor decisions. The residents of Hopewell deserved better. Two great officers will never be the same.

Speaking of wholly unqualified, we see now that those that began the whole “defund” conversation, didn’t even need the police in the first place. A recent poll published by Navigator Research, a Democratic firm, showed that the majority of voters from both parties (and independents), as well as white, black, and Hispanic voters cited violent crime as a “major crisis.”

Who fights violent crime? Social workers? Stand by for the next social experiment disaster. Maybe somebody should ask us how well that’s going to work out!