(NewsNation Now) — After multiple officers were shot in major cities this weekend, Dan Abrams Live is taking a look at the disturbing amount of indifference in the media and lack of outrage from the public at large.
“For me, personally, what I think it is, is there’s been so much anti-police commentary from a lot of influential people, whether they be politicians, athletes, you know, people, musicians, actors, things like that,” retired Tulsa police department Lt. Sean “Sticks” Larkin said on the show. “And so it’s just acceptable right now for a portion of the population to have complete disregard for law enforcement and even to assault them.”
Renee Hall, a former Dallas police chief and daughter of a fallen officer, says the lack of outcry for officers killed in the line of duty stretches back decades.
“I think that what we’ve seen is just a lot of issues around race and policing,” Hall said. “I can tell you as a daughter, you know, a family member of a slain police officer and (even) 50 years ago, there was no outrage, there was no media coverage.”
The Washington Post, for example, keeps a tracker of every person shot and killed by police. But they don’t keep a tracker of every police officer killed by a civilian.
Meanwhile, police officers are being intentionally killed in the line of duty at a higher rate than they have been in more than a quarter of a century. Last year, 73 officers were killed. Excluding the 9/11 attacks, that’s the most since 1995.
“Is it that we have had such strained relationships with law enforcement in our communities over the years? Or is it just an idea that it comes with the territory?” Hall said. “And these are the questions that we need to ask our communities. We need to make sure that we’re constantly asking those individuals who are lawmakers and politicians, and then we need to challenge.”
Hall believes the problem is the relationship and communication between police and communities.
“We need to, for once and finally, end this breakdown in the relationship, because we are mothers and fathers and brothers and sisters and our lives matter,” Hall said.
Larkin agrees that fixing the relationship is the largest part of the problem, but he also believes holding career criminals accountable is an issue.
“These career criminals … are getting, in my opinion, slaps on the wrist after being caught with guns as convicted felons multiple times, still getting probation or getting sentences reduced,” Larkin said. That, he said, is a “major, major problem.”
Lashawn J. McNeil, the suspect who shot two New York police officers Friday, was on probation for a drug conviction and had several out-of-state arrests. He died Monday after a third officer shot him.
Police in Houston are asking the public for help finding Oscar Rosales, the man accused of shooting an area deputy Sunday.