MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) - In a letter to his deputies and staff, Hennepin County Sheriff David Hutchinson offered his support during what he called “challenges for public safety like never before.”
Hutchinson wrote the letter in the aftermath of an ambush shooting of two LA County sheriff’s deputies over the weekend.
He acknowledged COVID-19, a surge in violent crime, looting and rioting, major trials and the reconsideration of the role of police in society as just some of the adversity his staff has faced this year.
He urged his staff to remain cautious, to keep their heads “on a swivel,” but to “continue to do your job with the utmost professionalism and courtesy, even as we often face harsh insults and people blaming police for all societal ills.”
Here is the full letter from Sheriff Hutchinson that was obtained by FOX 9 Monday:
I am sure by now you have seen the news about two sheriff’s deputies in LA County being shot in an ambush attack. I have passed on the thoughts and prayers of our agency to Sheriff Villanueva and his staff. They continue to monitor the recovery of the two deputies and search for the coward who committed this evil. I would ask you, as you go about your duties today, to take a moment to hold those two deputies in your thoughts and prayers.
This year has seen challenges for public safety like never before. The outbreak of a global pandemic would have made this year one of the most challenging in our careers. Unfortunately, that was only the beginning of the challenges we continue to face: a surge in violent crime, a tumultuous economy, uncertainty over the future of schooling, looting and rioting, major trials garnering global attention, and a major re-thinking of the role of police in our society. Because of the turmoil, people who wear the badge are being targeted for violence. It is important that we are cautious. Keep your head on a swivel. Look after yourselves and your partners and stay grounded with your friends and family. But it’s also important to continue doing your job with the utmost professionalism and courtesy, even as we often face harsh insults and people blaming police for all societal ills.
While it is perhaps easiest to despair all that is happening in our country, I choose to remain hopeful. Engraved on the National Law Enforcement Memorial in Washington, DC are the words of Roman Senator Tacitus: “In Valor, There is Hope.” I am reminded of that sentiment when I see video of the LA shooting during which a gravely wounded deputy sheriff continues to fight, making sure help safely comes to her partner. I am reminded of that sentiment when I see our deputies standing proudly against crowds of demonstrators, ensuring that the justice system operates as it should and the ideals of our Constitution are upheld even as their noble profession is vilified by those in the crowd. I am reminded of that when I see our staff going about their duties with pride and professionalism, despite all the challenges and distractions we face. I reminded of that hope when I hear from our retirees and the loved ones of our staff standing proudly in support of those still serving. And I am reminded of it when someone in the community, even with angry people watching, approaches and thanks a deputy for his or her service.
That is valor. That keeps me hopeful.
Please be safe and be well.
Sheriff David P. Hutchinson