In my opinion 99.9% of preppers are law-abiding citizens who fear God and want nothing more than to be left alone to live their lives in peace and prosperity. Having said that I take extreme exception to the recent article entitled, “Things to Understand When Interacting With Police”, by G.S. from Florida. G.S. is a defense attorney who used to be a prosecuting attorney. Let me introduce myself as much as I can. I am a prepper and a police detective in a Western state and have arrested many criminals over the years. I have been in many jury and bench trials and have had many dealings with defense attorneys. There is a common joke in the world of law that it is very difficult to be an honest person and be a defense attorney. It is my belief and opinion that 1 in 20 defense attorneys are honest people. That is a mere 5% that are honest and I will explain why that is.
It is a defense attorney’s job to represent people accused of committing crimes and they are an important and necessary part of the judicial system. But often times the defense attorney knows full well that his client is guilty of the crime he is accused of. Unfortunately for the defense attorney, this knowledge usually comes directly from the defendant. So there lies the dilemma. How do you represent a person you know is guilty, when your client has told you himself he committed the crime and especially when the crime is heinous? Well an honest person would say “I can’t.” But a defense attorney will say, “What can I do to get my client off these charges,” and will use various dishonest practices that I have seen defense attorneys employ. Defense attorneys attempt to get their clients off on technicalities (such as on DUI charges) and practice character assassinations of witnesses, police officers and most horrifically on victims. I saw a defense attorney make a rape victim break down and cry on the stand during a jury trial as he attempted to paint the victim as a culprit during his character assassination of her. A defense attorney outright called me a liar on the stand during a jury trial because the trial was not going well for his client who had admitted to me, post Miranda and on recording, that he had committed the aggravated robbery he was accused of. I could go on but my point is that be weary of defense attorneys. There are some good ones who have a conscience and don’t lie. But many believe that the ends truly justify the means.
Let me be clear. Police officers must never violate a person’s Constitutional rights and must always arrest on probable cause with clear evidence. If in doubt I don’t arrest and I let the district attorney’s office decide if there is enough evidence to prosecute. G.S. is correct about the level 1, 2 and 3 stops and I beg each citizen to be familiar with each of these.
Next G.S. recommended not speaking with police. I think this is false and let me give you a great example as to why. One night, while on patrol, I responded to a call where a man was waiving a gun around in a parking lot and other people were running away. A description of the man and his vehicle were given by dispatch. I was first on scene and located the “suspect” vehicle leaving the parking lot. Myself and other officers conducted a “high hazard” stop of the vehicle. The driver was removed from his vehicle and his handgun was located. Also in the vehicle were his wife and several children. The witness said that she saw this man pointing his handgun at several people who then fled the scene prior to our arrival. Next I wanted to speak with the accused suspect who happened to have a carry permit. I read him Miranda and he was anxious to speak with me. He said that a group of four males approached him and were asking him about where he was from and what his religion was. When he told them that information two of them produced knives and were going to attack him. A fact the witness did not know and did not see. Fearing for his life and for the life of his children and wife, he produced his handgun, which he pointed at the suspects. In this situation he could have shot them and would have been justified in doing so. We all complimented the man for doing what he needed to do protect himself and his family, returned his handgun and sent him on his way. If he had chosen not to speak with us that night (which is his right), as G.S. recommended, he would have been taken to jail at least for reckless endangerment and his handgun would have been seized. I understand a person’s apprehension to speak with police but it is my experience that it is only beneficial to you to do so.
In the next section G.S. writes about the force matrix. This is where his experience as a defense attorney shines brightly for all to see as he twists facts and information into what he wants them to be. He said, “Note that under the matrix, active physical resistance by a person can be met by police with deadly force.” This is not true and the chart that he linked says it is not true. I implore each of you to look at the chart he provided and recognize his false statement. The chart listed “Aggravated Physical Resistance” as being met with deadly force. There is a huge difference between “Active Physical Resistance” and “Aggravated Physical Resistance” and G.S. knows it. Let me give you some examples of “Aggravated Physical Resistance” against police: pulling a gun, pulling a knife, attempting to disarm, strangling (like a rear strangle hold), attempting to cause death or serious bodily injury, etc. G.S. would have you believe that police can kill you just because you are actively resisting, i.e. running away, taking a fighting position, not putting your hands behind your back, etc. What he would have you believe is true and what is actually true are two different things.
I will not delve too deeply into police corruption other than to say it does exist and in my department it is dealt with swiftly and severely. Any officer who is corrupt is a disgrace to the office and has not upheld their oath to protect and preserve the Constitution of the United States. Many may not know this but as executive officers of a state we, as law enforcement, are bound by oath and affirmation to support the Constitution (last paragraph of Article VI).
I understand that G.S. was just attempting to write an article to help the prepper community. His world is tough because he is always dealing with the criminal element and criminals are often times disheartening. But I found several of his points to be false.
Over the years I have read several articles on this blog that seem anti and pro police. I want the prepper community to know that most police officers I work with don’t want to bother you and only want to protect the communities in which they serve. Look for truth in all things and be a watchman of the night. – R.B.