Dori: Thank your Seattle police officers — look at their job
At a time when we have politicians and initiatives doing everything they can to demonize our police officers, it’s important to have a pretty stark reminder of the job the men and women of the Seattle Police Department have to do every day.
In the early hours of Thursday morning, Seattle police officers went to a homicide in Northgate, where a man had decapitated a woman in an apartment with children in it. Because the man had a knife and would not respond to officers’ repeated commands, they were forced to shoot him.
It’s not like when you or I go to work and take it as a given that we will safely return home at the end of the day. What these men and women do as part of their jobs, and the split-second life-and-death decisions they have to make, we cannot possibly imagine it.
And the worst part is, I’m sure there are already some people in the community thinking, “How can we score some points against the cops because of this?”
It began at 3:25 a.m. on Thursday morning, when officers from SPD’s North Precinct were sent to a domestic disturbance.
There was a language barrier, so dispatchers couldn’t make out what was happening or where it was happening. After they found an interpreter at 3 a.m., they figured out it was a serious domestic violence incident near Northgate.
All I can say is, thank goodness for bodycams, because they allow us to see the unimaginably difficult job that our police officers face regularly and exonerate our cops. To anyone who watches the bodycam video SPD has released from this incident and does not afterwards have a deep appreciation for the job that our cops do, I can’t help you.
WARNING: This video contains extremely graphic content and may be disturbing to viewers. Watch at your own discretion.
If you prefer not to watch the video, I will tell you what happens in it. You see officers enter an apartment where a man had decapitated a woman (who is blurred out in the video). There are small children in the apartment this whole time.
They try to figure out how they can cuff the guy, but he’s got a knife right next to him and is not responding to their commands. They beg him to get down on the ground, away from the knife. He grabs the knife, standing about 12 to 15 feet from the officers, as they continue to ask him to drop it. He makes a move toward the cops, and they open fire, killing him.
Think about that. Compare it to your job. This is what they’re walking into at 3:30 a.m.
These are heroes, these Seattle police officers.
But there will be community activists who will try to rile people up and foster more cop hatred. I wanted to play that audio so that you could hear the efforts they made to not kill this man. Unfortunately, with a knife in his hand at that close distance, he was clearly a threat to them.
As you know, I will call out cops who do wrong. But I will defend with every breath I have the majority of great cops who are out there.