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Texas police want bible verse patch on uniforms

Diboll police patch

DIBOLL, Texas — A police department wants to change the shoulder patch on their uniform to a bible verse to better reflect their values, MyEastTex reported.

The Diboll Police Department already has “In God We Trust” on their vehicles and buildings, but wants to add a patch with a bible verse designed by the agency’s chief.

The verse, Matthew 5:9, says “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.”

The chief wanted something on the uniform that he says better reflects the department’s values and attitudes towards police work.

“With everything that’s going on in the world right now and the attacks on police officers. You know, there’s officers being targeted and murdered,” Chief Steve Baker told the news site. “I wanted kind of a reference to what we do.”

The department attorney was figuring out legal issues regarding the patch, but the department hopes to wear it while on duty. If they can’t wear the verse, the chief will use “In God We Trust.”

Officer on leave for anti-protest tweets is back on Calif. force


SAN JOSE — A San Jose police officer placed on leave after posting threatening tweets aimed at anti-police brutality protesters has been put back on the force with a desk job, police announced Thursday.

An independent arbitrator reinstated Officer Phil White in opposition to the city and the department’s wishes, according to a news release issued by San Jose Police.

“While the City and Department disagree with the Arbitrator’s conclusion, we respect the process and will move forward with reinstatement,” Acting Chief of Police Eddie Garcia said in a statement. “The Department recognizes that the individual character and excellence of each Department member reflects upon the Department. Therefore the Department will continue to expect each of its members to maintain a high ethical standard and provide equitable treatment for all its citizens.”

White posted and deleted two tweets on his private Twitter account in December 2014 that appeared to be aimed at Black Lives Matter protesters. The first read, “By the way if anyone feels they can’t breathe or their lives matter I’ll be at the movies tonight, off duty, carrying my gun.”

After that, he tweeted: “Threaten me or my family and I will use my God given and law appointed right and duty to kill you. #CopsLivesMatter”

White’s hashtag appeared to be a play on words related to the popular BlackLivesMatter hashtag, which has since grown into a widespread activist movement against officer-involved shootings that primarily involve unarmed black men.

White’s posts were condemned by then-Chief Larry Esquivel, the San Jose Police Officer’s Association and Menlo College in Atherton, where he once acted as an assistant basketball coach. He also deleted his Twitter account amid the controversy.

In January 2015, the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office announced the tweets were “inappropriate and unprofessional,” but did not warrant criminal charges.

Prior to posting the tweets, White had apparently complained of the property damage that occurred during 2014 Bay Area protests. He also said he was threatened on social media and via his voice mail at Menlo College, the district attorney’s office said.

White was placed on paid leave after his Tweets went viral, but it was not clear if he had ever been fired. After a probation period, he participated in an appeal, which led to his reinstatement by an arbitrator.

Since his return, White has been assigned “administrative duties” and will also help in the body-worn camera roll out, police said.

Why the LAPD’s ‘Preservation of Life’ medal is dangerous for cops

LAPD traffic patch

Imagine responding to a scene of a domestic call. You knock on the front door and in an instant you and your partner are facing a man with a sawed-off shotgun. Your instinct and training tells you to draw your weapon, assess the threat, and either de-escalate the situation or use deadly force. That is the paradigm for a deadly threat encounter engrained into every officer’s training.

This reaction to deadly force has been the standard set forth by the U.S. Supreme Court — an officer must reasonably believe it is necessary to shoot to defend himself or someone else from imminent death or great bodily harm. Law enforcement agencies have focused training on quick and accurate threat assessment for individual officers so they have the ability to de-escalate any situation and use lethal force only as a last resort.

In the past several months, the politically correct minority may have influenced a new law enforcement commendation awarded to officers who avoid the use of deadly force. One notable example is the announcement last year by the Los Angeles Police Department that it would begin acknowledging officers for resolving potentially deadly situations with non-lethal means with the so-called “Preservation of Life” medal. This may be a dangerous move, and could cast further doubt in cops’ minds on how to react to a deadly encounter. The union that represents LAPD officers called the award a “terrible idea that will put officers in even more danger.”

Training Emphasizes De-escalation When Possible
Studies have shown that an officer has one-fourth of a second to recognize a deadly threat, another one-fourth of a second to pull his gun, and another .06 seconds to pull the trigger before he is on the wrong side of a deadly encounter. We train cops that a person’s hands can kill you. We spend much time in defensive tactics and on the gun range utilizing drills to train and develop the muscle memory needed to quickly assess the threat and make the appropriate response to such a threat.

Most importantly, there are probably more drills spent on threat recognition training with the officer confronting a perceived threat that does not warrant the use of deadly force.

Why do we spend so much time engaging cops in training with non-deadly force response during a deadly force situation? Because history has taught us that the officer will have to justify his actions and face extensive scrutiny even if it’s a justified shoot. Because we know that taking a human life will forever change an officer’s life no matter how strong of an emotional barrier he or she projects.

Law enforcement officers are trained to constantly scan their surroundings and assess the data that is observed so that their situational awareness provides them the ability to respond quickly to any unlawful action. There isn’t any training conducted in the United States where officers are taught to shoot first, then determine the threat level.

A History of De-Escalating Deadly Force Encounters
I would argue that American law enforcement is the most trained and educated law enforcement in the world. On a daily basis, American cops face dangers at a level and frequency that most countries seldom experience. They do so in a society that grants liberties and freedoms to the criminal element. This factor drives the training model for American law enforcement. To put it simply, cops are trained not to use deadly force unless a deadly threat is present. Therefore, the suspect in any deadly force situation dictates the outcome.

Since the early days of modern policing, scores of officers have been involved in deadly force encounters and didn’t use lethal force when it could have been justified. The reason for this phenomenon is that cops are trained how to de-escalate every encounter they face — deadly or not. Various factors allow an officer to de-escalate a deadly force encounter:  a suspect following the officer’s command, dropping his weapon, etc.

There are many more lethal force encounters that are met with de-escalation tactics than there are encounters that ended in lethal force. It’s so common, in fact, that law enforcement doesn’t even track this type of statistic.

When an officer utilizes less lethal force options, such as a TASER or pepper spray, it usually gets noted in an arrest report and likely won’t even catch the eye of a shift lieutenant. The arrest is made, the report is written, and we all go out for pops after work. Meanwhile, a good patrol sergeant may recognize the work of the officer and offer some praise before the next day starts a new tour of duty.

Why reward an officer’s actions with an accommodation such as the “Preservation of Life” award, such as has begun in Los Angeles? The standard in law enforcement training — and the practice of cops across this country — is to de-escalate a deadly force encounter without lethal force when possible but use deadly force when a lethal threat is perceived imminent. An award only serves to complicate and undermine the training and experience that every cop on the street has.

The dark cloud that has covered law enforcement these past couple of years is driven by various factors — media hype, a false narrative of racism in law enforcement, and the rare wrongful use of deadly force. This cloud will pass in time as it has in the past.

However, pandering to the political correctness minority by implementing a commendation that encourages hesitation in the face of a deadly encounter will surely get cops killed.

Command staff: Please don’t follow these agencies that are caving to a minority element just to save their own jobs by creating such a commendation that will certainly create a hesitation in an officer’s decision to use lawful deadly force. Let’s continue training our cops and allow them to do what they do best: maintain the preservation of life and peace through lawful response. Remember, it’s the criminal who dictates the outcome, whether it results in the use of deadly force or an arrest without incident.

About the author

Glenn French, a retired Sergeant with the Sterling Heights (Mich.) Police Department, has 24 years police experience and served as the Team Commander for the Special Response Team, and supervisor of the Sterling Heights Police Department Training Bureau. He has 16 years SWAT experience and also served as a Sniper Team Leader, REACT Team Leader, and Explosive Breacher.

He is the author of the award-winning book Police Tactical Life Saver, which has been named the 2012 Public Safety Writers Association Technical Manual of the year. Glenn is also the owner of Rubicon Tactical Strategies and can be reached at

Glenn has instructed basic and advanced SWAT / Tactical officer courses, basic and advanced Sniper courses, Cold Weather / Winter Sniper Operations and Active Shooter Response courses, Terrorist Response course, Tactical Lifesaver Course and others. Sgt. French also served in the U.S. Army. During his military tenure Sgt. French gained valuable experience in C.Q.B., infantry tactics and explosive breaching operations.