News & Politics

Ten Florida SWAT Team Members Resign Because of Lack of Political Backing

SWAT members prepare to search the neighborhood where a police officer was fatally shot Friday, Nov. 17, 2017, in New Kensington, Pa. Authorities in Pennsylvania say a police officer was shot and killed while making a traffic stop and a search is underway for the gunman. The officer has not been identified. (Rebecca Droke/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette via AP)

Ten members of the Hallandale, Fla., Beach Police SWAT unit have resigned because they feel “restrained by the politicization of our tactics,” according to documents obtained by CNN.

CNN:

The officers sent a letter, dated Tuesday, to Hallandale Beach Police Chief Sonia Quinones, saying they were “minimally equipped, under trained and often times restrained by the politicization of our tactics to the extent of placing the safety of dogs over the safety of the team members.”

The officers also said they were displeased after the command staff took a knee with activists and others during a demonstration on Monday, according to the letter.

“Until these conditions and sentiments are rectified and addressed, we cannot safely, effectively and in good faith carry out duties in this capacity without putting ourselves and our families at this needless increased level of risk,” the officers added.

Can you blame them? With politicians second-guessing police officers’ every move and activists putting their actions under a microscope, it’s impossible for them to do their job safely.

We don’t demand police officers sacrifice their lives to do their jobs. Becoming a cop is not a suicide pact and these SWAT members want none of it as long as politicians are using cops as props in their little morality plays.

Hallandale Beach City Manager Greg Chavarria rushed to assure citizens that the city didn’t need their own SWAT unit, that they could rely on other jurisdictions to cover them.

“The City of Hallandale Beach continues to have special weapons and tactics coverage through regional mutual aid, which the City has used for SWAT operations in the past. While the voluntary resignation of our officers from this assignment is unfortunate, our residents should be assured it has not had any impact on our commitment to protecting their safety. Also, while these officers have resigned from the SWAT Team, they have not resigned from the Department,” the statement read.

Chavarria also addressed the officers’ concern over the command staff taking a knee during a demonstration. “They specifically mention their displeasure with the Chief joining members of our community in taking a knee against racism, hatred, and intolerance earlier this week. They have incorrectly stated the gesture was in support of an elected official. This is simply not true,” Chavarria said in the statement.

It is not part of the chief of police’s job to express his political opinions. If he wants to grovel before the mob, let him do it on his own time.

Needless to say, it’s going to get harder to find good men and women to become police officers and harder to keep them.

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