Local police, residents react to Texas tragedy
PRESCOTT VALLEY – Police Chief Bryan Jarrell doesn’t understand what the attack on Dallas police was supposed to accomplish.
“Families are destroyed, and a young man is also dead because he was consumed with hatred, hatred instead of determination to seek meaningful change, because the event that occurred in Dallas will not change anything,” he said.
“So what was accomplished here except the destruction of more lives and the perpetuation of more hatred?”
Five officers were slain in the sniper attack, and seven more injured, when one or more gunmen opened fire on what had been a peaceful march in downtown Dallas to protest the deaths of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Philando Castile in suburban St. Paul, Minnesota.
Yavapai County Sheriff Scott Mascher said in a statement, “I, like many of you, am sick and tired of the violence against law enforcement officers who put their lives in harm’s way every day. These acts of evil must not be tolerated. Please pray for the families of the officers killed and wounded. Openness and transparency must be the priority in the discussion of officer involved shootings and these attacks on our fellow officers only set back any progress we have made.”
Jarrell said that the attack was pointless.
“Instead of letting the system of justice run the way it’s supposed to… does it always work out the way we want? No. But it’s the system of justice we have under the democracy we have. And if we don’t have that, then we end up back in a civil war, and we’re all fighting against each other.”
He also noted that it could happen anywhere, even here.
“All it takes, no matter how much this community loves our police officers, it only takes one person to have some sense of hatred or injustice … that they feel the only way they can address those grievances is through the use of violence against …my police officers.
“Just because we’re in Prescott Valley,” he said, “that doesn’t mean it can’t happen here.”
The attack in Dallas is a “reminder that people out there don’t like us, don’t like police officers, just simply because of the uniform we wear,” Prescott Deputy Police Chief Amy Bonney said.
“The bottom line is, we still are entrusted to take care of this community, and we just do it the best way that we know how, trying to keep in mind the safety of our officers as well as that of the community.”