Ask Deputy George Hufstetter and, he'll tell you, “law enforcement has become a lot harder,” especially, after what happened in Dallas.
He thinks about the families of those were gunned down in the Dallas ambush. And, now that the names have been released, some in the department, are thinking about Lorne Ahrens. He was one of the Dallas police officers murdered. Before joining the DPD Ahrens was a member of the LA County Sheriffs Department.
Lots in law enforcement weighed-in on the Big D tragedy including LA Police Chief Charlie Beck who said, “America needs to have a dialogue and that dialogue can not break down along racial lines," but, about violence.
Beck and Mayor Eric Garcetti were both at a recruit graduation of new LAPD officers. They were also part of a very unusual meeting with rappers Snoop Dog, The Game and protestors. They talked about unity, building on improvements in recent years, deescalating violence, respect and, as Garcetti said, “Those who would target us because of the color of our skin, the uniform that we wear, the way we worship God, the things we believe in… that is unAmerican.”
Lou Turriaga with the LA Police Protective League, the LAPD officers union, told us, “I think what you have to do as a police officer... on patrol is you just have to be more aware.”
George Huffstetter with the Association of Los Angeles County Sheriffs Deputies (the deputies union) says social media and technology have changed the landscape for law enforcement officers.
Huffstetter says, “Now, people feel they have to record everything a law enforcement officer is doing because they’re going to catch that officer doing something wrong.”
Sean Van Leeuwan, ALADS's VP says, “I think its made it harder for everybody by fanning the flames of anti-police sentiment.”
Meanwhile, Lou Turriaga says, “I’ve been a member of this department in LAPD for 28 years and I can tell you that LA, in particular, is dedicated. And, we have been concerned about community safety and community policing for my entire career.”
Hal Eisner's piece is the point of view from law enforcement. Video # 2 is Phil Shuman's piece on community reaction.