Dear Fellow Citizens:
I am both heartbroken and outraged that on June 2, Wake County Sheriff Sergeant Robert Waller was ambushed, shot and seriously injured while performing his sworn duty to protect and serve the citizens of Wake County. By the grace of God, his name was not added to that grim role of honor of law enforcement killed in the line of duty. At best, he will have to endure a long and painful recovery. It was my privilege to work with Sergeant Waller for several years, and I can attest that he was not one to abuse his position or mistreat those he encountered. He was professional, friendly and anxious to help others. What happened to him should never happen to anyone, but in my view, it is even more shameful when it happens to a true public servant like Sergeant Waller.
It has been my observation, especially in recent years, that the public generally becomes quite concerned, and rightfully so, when a police officer makes a tragic error. I cannot help however, but wonder why is there not the same concern, and yes in some cases outrage, when an officer is killed or seriously injured in the line of duty. Thus far this year in the United States, 148 officers have died in the line of duty, nearly one per day. Seven of those tragic deaths occurred in North Carolina. Countless other law enforcement officers have been injured while lawfully performing their sworn duties to protect their fellow citizens. Have you heard about any of those deaths or injuries?
I speak from experience because I too was shot and seriously injured while serving in the line of duty as a state trooper. Through God’s grace, skilled medical care and the unwavering support of my friends and family, I was able to recover and resume my law enforcement career. So, I very well know how important it is for all of us to stand behind the courageous men and women who risk their lives every single day in service to you, the citizens of Wake County.
Now is most certainly not the time to defund law enforcement but the time to speak up for our officers and to give them our thanks and the resources they need to protect us. I am personally asking the good people of Wake County to join me in letting our law enforcement officers know that they are appreciated and in showing our support for them. A simple “thank you” when you encounter an officer means more than most people can imagine and don’t you think we at least owe them that much?
Thank you and please stay safe,
Officer Down Memorial Page; https://www.odmp.org/search/year/2021
2021 Officer Preliminary Fatalities; available at https://nleomf.org/preliminary-fatalities