Tough times for men and women in blue
Law enforcement officials hug each other Monday before a memorial service for two slain Miami-Dade police officers.
January 24th, 2011
01:51 PM ET

Tough times for men and women in blue

As police in Florida prepared for the funeral of two Miami-Dade County police officers gunned down in the line of duty, shots rang out Monday in St. Petersburg, on the other side of the state. Two other officers fell dead and a federal marshal was wounded. Follow updates on CNN and affiliate WFTS-TV.

On any given day, such violence against police officers would be disturbing. But the fatalities capped a particularly violent 24 hours in the United States for the men and women in blue. Eleven police officers were shot.

“It is a very disturbing trend for all of us,” said Hal Johnson, general counsel for the Florida Police Benevolent Association. “Florida has never seen a streak like this. I don’t think anybody has.”

It is natural to search for answers, Johnson said, even if there aren’t any. The shootings do not appear to be related, and the motives may never be known. Declaring it to be open season against police officers seems dangerously simplistic, he added.

He sees the shootings more as acts of desperation.

“They are shooting at people they know have guns,” Johnson said. “I don’t know what’s going on out there, but I’ve never seen it like this. I do see the developing of a callousness. It’s almost as if shooting a police officer has lost its shock effect.”

Consider:

- On Sunday, four officers were shot in a Detroit police station by a man who walked in, firing randomly. Lamar Deshea Moore was shot to death by police so his motive may never be known, but local reports say a relative was awaiting sentencing for double murder. Two of the police officers remain hospitalized. For more, read CNN’s update and affiliate reports from the scene: WXYZ-TV and WDIV-TV.

- Two deputies were shot outside a Walmart in Port Orchard, Washington, near Seattle, on Sunday. Check out CNNKIRO-TV and KOMO-TV for the latest updates.

 - A police officer is in a coma and in critical condition after being shot during a traffic stop early Sunday in Indianapolis. Check out WTHR-TV and WISH-TV for updates.

- In Lincoln City, Oregon, a police officer was shot Sunday night during a traffic stop. The officer is in critical condition. Check out affiliate KOIN-TV for more information.

Although they do not appear to be related, the weekend shootings follow two other violent incidents last week involving police officers, including the Miami killings and a slaying in Lakewood, New Jersey.

Post by:
Filed under: Crime • Florida • Indiana • Michigan • Washington state
soundoff (1,001 Responses)
  1. MPL

    Doc,
    Soon we hope!

    January 24, 2011 at 6:10 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Tim Green

    All brought to you by your friendly NRA.

    January 24, 2011 at 6:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Art2LT

      Who pulld the trigger? The gun didn't just go off, a gun is a paper weight without somebody behind the trigger...

      January 24, 2011 at 8:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tim Green

      Where have I heard that before?

      Try shooting someone with a paper weight, if you think they're the same.

      Geeze – I was hoping to have some sensible discussion here.

      January 24, 2011 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ryan A - Florida

      @Art2LT That's funny, I don't remember ever hearing about a child getting killed playing with a paper weight, or a person accidentally killing themselves while cleaning or handling a paper weight....Have you? Your argument that guns are only dangerous in the hands of dangerous people is completely obsurd...and so are you. The facts do not lie; check out the top 5 states as fas as gun ownership per capita, and you will see that they are also the top 5 in gun deaths per capita....moral of the story; more guns means more guns deaths, and less guns equals less gun deaths....argue with that idiot.

      January 24, 2011 at 9:56 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Dolby

    It seems that some people still don't see the connection: Easy availability of guns = people getting shot. It is inevitable, but at some point guns need to be registered and the ownership of that gun needs to be able to be tracked back to its registered owner.

    January 24, 2011 at 6:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • DYBO

      We seem to do it pretty well with automobiles. People are required to report sales that are kept track of by vin numbers etc.

      January 24, 2011 at 6:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Craig

      Ask the Jews how registering their firearms worked out for them in the 30's.

      January 24, 2011 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Collapse

      Did we have any of these incidents including the giffords occuring b4 this year began? Why now? Come on folks. It doesnt make sense!

      January 24, 2011 at 7:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • T

      Great idea! Then we can be like Canada, when all the gun owners are registered, police know where they all live and then they can simply go and take their guns away. Then we can all live in a true police state where everybody is assumed guilty, oppressed, lives in fear and has no right to defend themselves against an obviously corrupt and abusive police force. My goodness you are a genius! You really should run for Congress with all your great ideas.

      January 24, 2011 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Oscar

      @ T

      My country is NOT A POLICE STATE A**HOLE. The rules are simple; you break the law, you get punished. That is how all nations work. If someone commits grand theft, murder or arson, the government has a duty to the population to remove his or her weapons. Also, bolt-actions and semi-automatic handguns only. You don't need an assault rifle to hunt deer or protect your home.

      January 25, 2011 at 1:21 am | Report abuse |
  4. Aaron

    Blaming the right for these killing is laughable at best and quite pathetic. Shows just how clueless liberals really are.

    January 24, 2011 at 6:20 pm | Report abuse |
  5. ZolarKingOfAllMoney

    We have people staring at their TV/Computer screens with plastic guns in their hands shooting, shooting, shooting, etc.
    Endlessly for hours on end. The military uses the EXACT same games to de-sensitize recruits because their is a basic reluctance for one human to shoot another. After a couple hundred hours in a simulator, that reluctance goes away.
    No, I'm not saying video/computer games are THE reason, but it's very strange that in the last ten to fifteen years what passes for entertainment has basically become playing war games at home. Violence begets violence. Cops are not perfect (they are human after all) but our society would fall into chaos without them. Usually the law of the streets decrees that if the cops find the suspected cop killer before he has a chance to turn himself in they'll kill him on sight.
    Would not be surprised if that happens here. Time for America to REJECT the violence (MMA) and start LIVING again.
    But then, violence, enemies and hate are all some people have. Pity.

    January 24, 2011 at 6:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Aaron

      War games have been played at home for centuries. It is not a part of the problem, period.

      January 24, 2011 at 6:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • conoclast

      That is a very sane post; thank you! If there is indeed a link between shoot-em-up video games and real-life gun violence it's about time we heard about it. Also, movie computer simulations are almost always violent in nature; what are we telling our kids so insistently and graphically?

      January 24, 2011 at 7:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • MerelyAmused

      Really? War games have been played for centuries? Teaching kids that it is cool to shoot things up is not a contributing factor to violence?

      Nope to both! Up until the WWII war propaganda films that made war a glamorous thing, kids didn't think it was cool. John Wayne, Audey Murphy and the rest of the "soldiers" at the Saturday matinees were copied.

      It has been proven in study after study that kids DO become desensitized to violence when exposed to it for a long period, just like kids who grow up seeing a parent beat on the other parent are more likely to become domestic abusers themselves.

      January 24, 2011 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
  6. MPL

    TyHouston,
    I know for a fact, that every time I've been stopped by the police, (twice in over 30 years), I ALWAYS got out of the vehicle and pretended to have a gun.

    You have singlehandedly, brought stupidity to a new level.

    January 24, 2011 at 6:22 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Ntchwaidumela

    It's wild how when a cop shoots and kills someone, who may or may not be innocent, the cop becomes judge, jury, and in many cases, the executioner. Now, when the tables are turned just a little, when people are not taking the harassment, the mistreatment, and the racism (black people can hate black people too) any longe, here we are talking about what can be done, cops respecting citizens of all races is a great start. We should ask Trevon Cole, Scott Erickson, who are a couple of the latest victims of being killed by police officers who give conflicting statements, and are cleared in the deaths. So, it's a little hard to feel as sympathetic as I would if cops were treating us fair. There is an article on this very website talking about the "Guy who can explain everything."

    January 24, 2011 at 6:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • dodfireman

      I agree 100%. I can't understand how the cops are surprised that the citizens are starting to fight back. They continue to increase their militant tactics and cover each other after they murder the citizens that pay them to enforce the laws. I don't want to hear about how most of them are good cops. If they were good cops then they would make sure the bad cops were either fired or sent to jail. Instead they turn a blind eye and that makes them all corrupt. No tears will be shed for cops being killed.

      January 24, 2011 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  8. paul

    The system was drawn up to be equal opportunity for all mankind, it does not work that way any more, poor people and minority's are sinking deeper with out any hope in a rich man's world, where rich gets richer and poor gets poorer, some well educated young people will be able to afford homes and the necessity's of life, but for the middle and lower class will sink lower and lower cause depression and helplessness pointing many or most of those classes toward alcohol, mental illness and drugs, what you see will continue to get worse and worse, yes the police howl when it is one of thier people killed which we do not approve of , but what about the innocent people killed by police and they call it self defense in line of duty, we seen in our town a very likeable ,pleasant, non violent young adult shot through the back of his head where the officier said the boy had a head hold on him from behind , the inquirey ruled in favour of the officier and the officier did not have to answer how he could reach over back ward across the young man and shoot him in the head,the reality is although we hate these events happening the police should realize that they have had it to good to long , expect to see massive increases in that prohibative destructive behaviour .

    January 24, 2011 at 6:22 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Zax

    As usual the people posting their desire to lock up anyone for life who has ever broken any law show themselves to be just as scary and psycopathic as the criminals they hate. Consider "disgrunted" for example, as well as "pd wife".

    It is my opinion that Americans love violence so much that they use anyone who has broken the law as a beatdown toy for their own violence fetish.

    January 24, 2011 at 6:24 pm | Report abuse |
  10. NOLA

    This is, but not entirely, Hurricane Katrina's fault. Before the storm washed them out, the most deadliest criminals were concentrated in New Orleans. 6 years later, the level of crime is starting to level out across the country.

    I would also like to point out that the US armed forces allows convicted felons to enlist. So guess what, we not only have a punk with a pistol out on the streets, but we now have armed criminals with combat training out there! I don't care if that's a giant leap of logic. Prisons are not rehabilitation centers, they are training grounds. Civilians are outgunned and ill-trained, and the police are outnumbered.

    My solution? Join the military if you're able. Get some much needed survival skills. Actually, let's have a mandatory enlistment for every man and woman of age. At least, with the GI Bill, kids will be able to actually afford some college in the future... Oops, I have digressed.

    January 24, 2011 at 6:25 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Fric

    It appears that many of you want to ride the coat-tails of this story for your own political agenda. Tsk, tsk. Kind of selfish, don't you think? I've seen people get on here and blame people alive today for the same type of crimes that have been going on for countless years. Do you think cops or political figures were never murdered before Sarah Palin took her first breath? Blame it on the left, blame it on the right. How's about everyone start pointing the finger at yourself and start from there. It's getting to the point that I can't even read about the damn weather, and someone has spew their hate filled, political bullsh!t.

    KNOCK THIS SH!T OFF!!! People get killed every day. It's been like that for thousands and thousands of years. Think outside the box people. Quit letting other people think for you......you may be surprised at just how smart you really are.

    January 24, 2011 at 6:28 pm | Report abuse |
  12. brian

    Welcome to CNN.com, where every story becomes a debate on politics, racism, or both...

    January 24, 2011 at 6:36 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Dr Perry Fisher

    A shameful series of events

    January 24, 2011 at 6:37 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Mike

    Tea Partieers believe that we obviously need more guns. Don't cops represent "The Government"? It's about time that we strip bare the naked truth about what the good, God Fearing, Patriots have been trying to tell us about their intentions- that is -if they happen to think that their "Rights" are threatened, then they will have the fire power to "defend" themselves against the tyranical government......and who enforces the law of our duly elected government?
    Its good people trying to make a living and defend our rule of law- the Police, Federal Marshals, Highway Patrol, Park Rangers, Border Agents, etc. Their intentions reveal all.

    January 24, 2011 at 6:40 pm | Report abuse |
  15. jbond

    Nothing wrong with owning guns. I was s LE Officer, one son is, and another is on his way to become ones

    January 24, 2011 at 6:41 pm | Report abuse |
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