Obama Blasted by Md. Sheriff for Ignoring Deaths of Slain Officers While Vilifying Police

Craig Bannister | February 16, 2016
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Sheriff Jim DeWees, a retired captain with the Maryland State Police, has published a letter to Pres. Obama, rebuking him for failing to acknowledge the recent murders of eight police officers – while taking every opportunity to publicly vilify law enforcement.

DeWees contrasts Obama’s indifference to the killing of police officers with the efforts of his state’s governor, Larry Hogan (R-Md.) to personally contact and console those grieving slain officers.

“I’ll save a spot for you next to me” at next week’s funeral for two Maryland officers recently killed, Sheriff DeWees closed.

The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), has shared the DeWees letter with its members, is also calling for Pres. Obama to take action to support officer safety.

In another letter to Pres. Obama published over the weekend, FOP Pres. Chuck Canterbury rebuked Obama for ignoring his letter imploring the president to call for federal hate crime laws to be expanded to include attacks on police (emphasis added):

“More than a year ago, I wrote to you and the leaders of Congress on behalf of the members of the Fraternal Order of Police to urge, in the strongest possible terms, that the current Federal hate crimes law be expanded to include law enforcement officers. This call has gone unanswered and our nation’s law enforcement officers continue to die in the streets.”

See the full letter from Sheriff DeWees to Pres. Obama below (emphasis added):

A Letter from me to our president:

Dear President Obama:

In case you haven’t heard, eight American police officers over the past eight days have been killed in the line of duty. Two of these police officers were Harford County Sheriff’s Deputies that were gunned down at a Panera Restaurant just 50 miles from where you live. I’ve watched and listened intently for words of encouragement and sorrow to come from you, but haven’t heard or seen anything.

Conversely, just two weeks ago my governor, Larry Hogan, spent the better part of a week placing a call each day to one of my deputies that was involved in a severe traffic collision in Carroll County. He wasn’t satisfied with speaking to me in order to send his prayers and regards; he called every day after the collision until he spoke with my deputy’s wife. Governor Hogan also drove to Harford County the day after two deputies were slain to meet Sheriff Gahler and the men & women of his office to grieve with them. The governor is in the middle of the 2016 Legislative Session and is pretty busy, yet found time to call, visit and pay his respects to me & my deputy, and the men & women of the Harford County Sheriff’s Office.

I understand that you are a busy man and are being pulled in multiple directions every day of the week. But, when my president doesn’t take the time to openly recognize the sacrifices that brave men & women of law enforcement make each day to keep domestic peace, I’m disappointed! I suspect that if these same deputies walked in to a restaurant, and without provocation shot and killed an innocent man, you and your staff would quickly whisk their family away to Washington for a future speech to make an example of police officers nationwide.

For me Mr. President, it has nothing to do with Republican or Democrat; black or white, male or female; but, it has everything to do with leading or following. I’m not shocked that you haven’t openly reached out or acknowledged publically the recent rash of deaths in law enforcement, but I’m tremendously disappointed!

Mr. President, your silence about these events SPEAKS VOLUMES!!!!

PS: I'll be standing outside in the cold next week with my deputies for the funerals of the Harford Co deputies; I'll save you a spot next to me!

James T. DeWees
Carroll County Maryland

Link to Sheriff DeWees' Facebook post

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