Obama Calls Deputy's Widow, Promises to 'Continue to Highlight Uncommon Bravery' of Cops
President Obama said he called the widow of a Texas deputy who was shot 15 times in an ambush attack while fueling up his car.
Shannon Miles, 30, appeared shackled in court today and did not enter a plea in the murder of Deputy Darren Goforth, a 47-year-old father of two and 10-year veteran of the Harris County Sheriff's Department. Miles' priors include disorderly conduct with a firearm and resisting arrest. He was charged in a 2012 fight at a homeless shelter and was initially found to be mentally incompetent before that was reversed and the charge was dropped.
Miles is accused of shooting Goforth once in the back of the head with a .40-caliber Smith & Wesson, then firing 14 more bullets into the deputy, according to prosecutors.
"We've heard Black Lives Matter, All Lives Matter. Well, cops' lives matter, too. So why don't we just drop the qualifier and just say 'lives matter'?," said Harris County Sheriff Ron Hickman on Saturday, stressing that he believes Goforth "was a target because he wore a uniform."
"This afternoon, on my way to Alaska, I called Kathleen Goforth, the widow of Harris County Deputy Sheriff Darren Goforth - a veteran law enforcement officer who was contemptibly shot and killed over the weekend," Obama said in a statement issued by the White House after the president arrived in Anchorage.
"On behalf of the American people, I offered Mrs. Goforth my condolences, and told her that Michelle and I would keep her and her family in our prayers. I also promised that I would continue to highlight the uncommon bravery that police officers show in our communities every single day," Obama continued.
"They put their lives on the line for our safety. Targeting police officers is completely unacceptable - an affront to civilized society."
Obama referenced his State of the Union Address, stating "we've got to be able to put ourselves in the shoes of the wife who won't rest until the police officer she married walks through the door at the end of his shift."
"That comfort has been taken from Mrs. Goforth," he said. "So we must offer her our comfort -- and continue to stand up for the safety of police officers wherever they serve."
Obama did not say anything about Black Lives Matter or the sheriff's comments.