The name has been removed to protect the sender's identity.
I am reaching out to you in this informal manner as a way to make a personal plea in regarding the police reform bill. I come from a family of civil servants. My brother and I are both police officers and my husband is district fire chief. We have dedicated our lives to serving our communities.
I am writing this after working another FORCED 16 hour shift. Because I was forced to work today I missed my daughter Rosalie lose her first tooth. But that is nothing compared to the mother that I tried to console tonight on Dudley Street as she watched her son being loaded into an ambulance from a gun shot wound. What am I supposed say to her when she is screaming “you all better do something about this! That’s my babies blood on the side walk!” ?
I became a police officer 5 years ago. 9 months after I gave birth to my triplets. Many people, including my own mother, called me selfish when I told them I was going into the academy. Most people expected me stay home and raise my children and let my husband work. But deep inside I had a calling to serve others and be part of something that was bigger than myself. It was not easy. I came home every night to 3 infants, a resentful husband and immense guilt for leaving them. I missed my daughter Regan take her first steps. It crushed my soul that my son Rocco would get a boo boo and run to my husband and not me. But I pushed through because I knew the reward of serving others would be so great. I was voted president of my academy class and represented class 55-15. As a woman, I had a lot more to overcome and I did it to show my children, especially my 2 daughters that a woman can do EVERYTHING. When my probation period ended I requested to worked in District B-2 Roxbury because that is the area of the city where a police officer is going to learn the job.
In my 5 years, I have seen and experienced some ungodly things. I have stood side by side with my colleagues with straight faces as a teenage boy’s brains oozed out on the sidewalk at Emrose Terrence. I have hugged a 3 year old little baby on Cedar Street that was covered in glass from his car window being blown out by gun fire as his mother screamed in agony from a gun shot wound to the head. I drove 3 brothers to DCF custody in Dorchester after they were ripped from their mother’s arms and tried to not let them see me cry. I walked through methodone mile with a father looking for his daughter that is an addict while he clutched a picture of her at age 6 dressed in a flower girl for dress at his sisters wedding. I have been punched in the face by man trying to escape with a gun tucked in his waist band after a robbery, I have been spat on and had urine thrown at me. And when I tell people these stories I get the response “that’s what you signed up for.” And they right. Why do I do it? Why do any of us do it? Because at the end of day you can go home and say maybe I helped someone. Maybe my arrest for possession of heroin kept that guy from over dosing today. Maybe towing the unregistered car kept someone from hitting an elderly person crossing the street. Maybe playing soccer at St Peters school with 10 little kids made them realize we aren’t the bad guys.
This bill is a slap in the face to every good officer that puts the badge on. This bill is being pushed through because some piece of shit cop in another part of country did something so wrong that not one person in our profession condones his behavior.
There is no way any reasonable person can read this bill knowing there is no input from ANY law enforcement official and think this going to work. This is beyond Democrat Republican bullshit. This is about everyday quality of life for the residents of Massachusetts. Why are you and your colleagues trying to push this nonsense through before your break? Why is something so important that is going to affect every single resident of the Commonwealth being rushed? Why hasn’t one elected official taken a stand and said “Hey we don’t have these huge problems here Mass. But let’s look for a way to make our law enforcement officers more educated so nothing like this ever happens here. Let’s come up with a state wide standard of universal training for all. Let’s ask those who are out on the street every single God Damn day what can we do to make their job better.” But NO! You have all painted us with a broad brush and made us look like a bunch of blue devils. I don’t understand why this can’t all be done with more researched and discussion after your summer break.
On May 31, 2020, I was on break with my family. I got a call that my city was being destroyed. I turned my radio on and heard my colleagues, my brothers and sisters SCREAMING for help. They were being surrounded, they were trapped in cars with bricks being thrown their windshield, I heard an officer pleading for help while his cruiser was being lit on fire. I heard our supervisors say “retreat”. You know what I did, I ended my break put my uniform on and reported to work. I watched my partner, my friend, pull into our station in a cruiser with the windshield busted out, back window, gone, dirt, feces and urine all over the front seat. I watched body camera footage of one of my colleagues from B-2 get blown away by an explosive device. I saw him semi-conscious and the only thing he could say to his partner was “Bro I’m not leaving you”. We were treated like animals by those who we vow to protect.
How fast we forget April 15, 2013 when Boston was attacked by a cowardly act terror that left Krystal Campbell Lingzi Lu, Martin Richard, Officer Sean Collier and Officer DJ Simmons dead. It was Boston Police, FBI and those surrounding cities and towns that worked together to bring justice to our city, state and the rest of USA.
For the next 15 days, we were ordered to work. No days off. And forced to stand on the frontline during a pandemic no less, to have people from all over state and country tell us “fuck 12, ACAB, the only good cop is a dead cop.” We have had officers home vandalized their families safety put in jeopardy and as most say “that’s what you signed up for”. And we hold our heads high and go to work.
Not one person sitting at the State House knows what any of us deal on a daily basis. Not one person even gives a shit to even ask. Talk about privilege and entitlement.
There is no black and white on our job. We live in total gray area where we need to make spilt second decisions with the facts we have at hand. No two calls are the same. No two officers see the same thing when they arrive on scene. To take away our due process and qualified immunity is Absurd! And I am not even going to started on the amendments. Do changes need to be made? Do we need to be held to higher standard? Of course. No one is denying any of that! But this bill is not the way to do it.
The way to do it is to stand up and say this bill isn’t going to work. Many officers are going to walk off the job. As an entirety departments are severely understaffed. Officers are going to give up on proactive policing. Officers are going to be so beat down and defeated that reactionary policing is going to be subpar. Let’s rip this nonsense up. And start over. Let’s bring in the Council of Police Chiefs, the MPTC, union officials, community activists, clergy, let’s bring in the departments that do it right and sit and discuss line by line what is actually expected of police officers and what departments actually need to run a successful operation. I invite every member of the house to take a ride along on a Friday or Saturday night in Dorchester, Roxbury or Mattapan and experience first hand working on the street.
I am telling all of you if you do this in coordination with everyone you will get such a positive response that will actually lead the way in police reform. Because right now you are all killing any will that an officer has left to serve. Be the face of actual real reform for the communities that are actually suffering. I’m begging you to slow down and not ruin the State of Massachusetts.
I’m trying to show a personal plea from someone who truly cares. Please feel free to share my thoughts with your colleagues as a different perspective.
I am posting this detailed newsletter in response to the newsletter posted by Cape Cod and Islands State Senator Julian Cyr. His newsletter reads in part, "We know that untangling crises as complex and interrelated as COVID-19 and systemic racism will take a long, long time, ..." In this well documented report, Dr. Blaylock says on page 4, "Another group of people who are highly susceptible to death from this virus are individuals with dark skin, who require 10 times more sun exposure to produce adequate vitamin D3 levels as light-skinned people. " In my opinion there is good news that people can build their immune system to a point where they can expect to resist dangerous infection. This disease isn't racist, infection rates are about biology.