I am confused following all the articles in all of the local newspapers about the misconduct in the Lake County Sheriff’s Office (see “Good cops, bad cops,” Feb. 23).
It is my understanding that the primary job description for law enforcement is to “serve and protect.” It seems to me that the primary job requirements for these personnel are “honesty and integrity,” beyond necessary technical training. If we can’t trust them, how can we be expected to believe they will perform their function properly, and that we can support them in that endeavor? When these individuals break the public trust, through obvious and admitted lack of personal integrity, why should they be treated any differently than any of us civilians?
Forget criminal offenses and statutes of limitations on punishable infractions, let’s just focus on officers’ integrity in performing their work.
A sheriff’s deputy claims to have knowledge and experience (that he doesn’t possess) and is promoted to a special position, receives more pay and special consideration, and then later admits (after his untruth is discovered) that he “misrepresented” himself and was not actually qualified for that work. Where I come from, that’s called lying (and stealing); it displays a total lack of integrity, and he should be fired. Law enforcement officers should be held to a higher standard, not lower. He carries a gun. How safe does that make me feel?
I don’t want him tried in court for being a liar and a thief. I want him removed from the public payroll and replaced with someone who actually holds and displays a better sense of character and honor. The entire saga, as printed in the Independent and elsewhere, reads like a bad children’s bedtime story. The Lake County attorney and sheriff (past and present) appear bent on sweeping it all under the rug. Man up and hold this department to a standard we can all respect. Simply do what’s right.