Police officer: It’s time to talk about the good

Police officer: It’s time to talk about the good

By: Hailey Fernelius                                                             

A lot of the press surrounding police officer shootings these days is creating an uneasy feeling of whether or not law enforcement is actually keeping people safe. Lieutenant Alex Davis of the Layton Police Department (LPD) reminds the people that the duty of an officer is to “make the community safer because of the actions we take.”

Despite all of the negative news surrounding police officers, there are still people that want to pursue this career, such as Landon Roach. “I have always wanted to be a police officer… I believe what they are doing is necessary and those who are in the police force now, more than ever, are trying to do the right thing.” Roach is currently a student at Weber State University and plans on enrolling in the police academy as soon as he has a degree.

When Roach was asked why he wanted to be an officer, he responded, “Ever since I was in the military, I have felt this overbearing feeling to help those in need.” He believes that everyone should have a chance to obtain happiness and knows that police officers are in a position to help.

For Davis this means the little things. Right now, the male members of the LPD are growing out their beards to help buy clothing for local schools. It is a $20 buy-in for every month an officer participates, and all of the proceeds are going to help children in need of warm winter clothing.

A local story produced by “Good 4 Utah,” recognized Officer Cody Miskin for helping a lady change her flat tire.

Some things Davis has noticed the LPD officers doing on a day-to-day basis, include helping an elderly person by mowing their lawn, or helping them cross the street. Davis added that recently, he helped an elderly man locate the VIN number on his car.  Another thing Davis wants the people to know is that most people don’t realize that officers will sometimes just walk the streets and talk to people. He says this is a great way for them to share their knowledge with the public about staying safe. It is all about the community and the connections officers can make with the people, he said.

However, not just anyone can handle this type of job. Davis explained that one of the hardest things about this job is handling crimes involving innocent people and not being able to provide justice. Roach shares this concern.

“I expect being placed into situations that may be very uncomfortable and even dangerous,” Roach said.

Davis stated that this job comes with a great deal of stress that most people don’t realize. He shares that it can be emotionally difficult to see the cruelty that people are capable of. He has to put on his uniform, and step out the door each day, not knowing if he will come home that night. “Sometimes I try to protect my family by not telling them what happened that day,” Davis said.

Not only do they encounter cruelty of people and their actions on a weekly basis, but Davis explains that police officers also have the added stress of being liable for taking away people’s freedom.

Will Ferrell tweeted, “Kinda funny how the colors red, white and blue represent freedom… until they are flashing behind you”. This statement has been circling social media ever since.  A common misconception associated with routine traffic stops is that they occur because an officer is trying to create revenue. Davis wants to clear the air by letting the people know that their enforcement is not tied to revenue.

Police officers have many duties that they participate in, all of which encompass Davis’ belief that the “Community [is] safer because of actions we take.”

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