Tuesday, June 20, 2006


Jeff is preparing for a hearing tomorrow dealing with issues relating to his disability. This precipitated him dragging out every legal document he has ever been given, including every letter and Order from my child custody suit. Interspersed among those documents were copies of his certifications from the police department, most of which I was aware of, but there was also a copy of a “Recommendation for Letter of Commendation” from Jeff’s former shift commander. It was dated in early 2000. Jeff said, “You know, it may not mean much to me anymore, but maybe my kids would like to see things like this.” The letter detailed how a call had gone out for a B&E in progress. Jeff had been the first on the scene, parking close enough to box the guy in, parking far enough away that the guy didn’t know he was there. Jeff got him on the ground and confiscated what appeared to be a semi-automatic weapon. The two other officers mentioned in the letter I know were close to be being rookies themselves and under Jeff’s direction canvassed the neighborhood, took statements from other individuals, and were able to ascertain the individual’s real identity as the crook has supplied false information. Come to find out he was wanted for a violent car-jacking and the supposed semi-automatic, which turned out to be a pellet gun, had been used in the commission of that crime. His shift commander specifically praised Jeff’s leadership, etc. I got a lump in my throat when I read it. I remembered the Jeff that I fell in love with and the fact that he no longer exists. I was still so very proud of him. I handed the letter back and I saw that he began reading it too. I looked away to the television and when I looked back, I could see the emotion on his face, the redness around his eyes, the look when someone is trying very hard not to become emotional. He finally put it down and said, “I have to stop reading.” I said, “I think your children would very much like to read that someday.” He nodded. There are more than a few reasons why Jeff is no longer a police officer. One is it just drove him crazy. Another is his former chief wanted the men on the department to turn a blind eye to his own son’s drug deals. When Jeff refused, the chief began targeting Jeff and there were a few guys on the department who went along with the chief and I know of one specifically who tried to cost Jeff his entire job. This officer is so obese that I could out run him in a pair of Brighton’s stripper shoes. Plus, I rode with him as a student rider and he was lazy and stupid, more lazy than anything. For a while, Jeff was the pariah of the department and although we weren’t together anymore, I knew what was going on and I worried for his safety. I literally worried that there were some out there who wouldn’t have his back. Eventually, three other higher ranking officers filed a grievance against the chief for his requests and harassment of the officers regarding his son’s drug dealing. The day the grievance was filed, the chief left the City Council meeting, went home and on his doorstep had a massive coronary. Those three officers were asked not to attend his wake or funeral. And that is life in small town U.S.A.
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