Attorney General William Barr recently wrote in an op-ed that there is “a deficit of respect” for America’s law enforcement officers. He went on to say, “There is no tougher job in the country than serving as a law-enforcement officer. Every morning, officers across the country get up, kiss their loved ones and put on their protective vests. They head out on patrol never knowing what threats and trials they will face. And their families endure restless nights, so we can sleep peacefully.” The three following incidents that took place last month attest to Mr. Barr’s assessment.
A female complainant told the 911 dispatcher that her boyfriend assaulted her and was armed with two handguns. Houston, TX police were dispatched but found no one at the location. Moments later, 32-year-old Sergeant Christopher Brewster came across a couple on foot in the area. He stopped to investigate and was immediately fired upon as he exited his patrol cruiser. Although struck in the upper torso, just above his protective vest, Sergeant Brewster radioed that he’d been shot and give a description of the suspect. Sergeant Brewster was transported to a local hospital but succumbed to his wounds. Other officers arrested and booked the suspect for capital murder. That was On December 7th, 2019. Sergeant Brewster is survived by his wife, parents, and three sisters.
Hours later in Fayetteville, AR 27-year-old Officer Stephen Carr sat in his patrol car outside police headquarters waiting for his partner to join him. A man on foot approached the unsuspecting officer, and without warning, starting shooting. Officer Carr was hit several times in the head. The shots were heard inside by other officers. They rushed outside and pursued the fleeing suspect. Just blocks away, the assailant was shot and killed in a gunfight. Officer Carr is survived by his father, sister, and girlfriend.
Three days later, on December 10th, 2019, 40-year-old Jersey City, NJ, Detective Joseph Seals was investigating a murder when he encountered a man and woman in a van linked to the homicide. During the investigation Detective Seals was shot and killed. His assailants fled to a Jewish grocery store where they murdered three civilians and shot two more officers. Both subjects were shot and killed by responding officers. Detective Seals leaves behind a wife and five children.
The Officer Down Memorial Page reported 132 line-of-duty deaths in 2019. Forty-seven were attributed to gunfire. But not everyone has lost respect for officers. On December 15th, Mrs. Lanell James’ respect went up a notch. Mrs. James of Conroe, TX and her husband were driving through Madisonville when Texas State Trooper Bates stopped them for speeding. After discovering the James were on their way to the funeral of an immediate family member, Trooper Bates asked if he could pray with the couple. They agreed and Bates removed his hat, held their hands, and prayed. Mrs. James said, “I have never had this happen before, but it was everything we needed at that moment. Thank you so much Trooper Bates for praying with us.”
Last summer Chaplain Dean Francini (pastor of Solid Rock Baptist Church in Colorado Springs, CO) purchased 150 copies of Winning a Gunfight. To be given to officers of the Colorado Springs PD. Please pray these books will have a positive impact on the Colorado officers.
In June of last year, Dr. Stan Ponz of Make It Clear Ministries interviewed me for their radio broadcast and podcast. On December 9th the interview aired on KDRY in San Antonio and on WTLN in Orlando. In case you missed the broadcast, you can listen to a podcast of the interview. Click here to listen to the podcast.
Last year ended with a trip to Louisiana where I spoke at the St. Tammany and Jefferson Sheriff Offices, The Crossing Church (Pearl River), and Collins Boulevard Baptist Church (Covington). This year begins with a speaking engagement at a men’s conference in San Antonio hosted by Leon Valley Baptist Church at the end of January, then it’s off to a chaplain training conference in Oregon.
Pray for your police.