Milwaukee Officer Laments Declining Respect for Police in the Community

As National Police Week comes to a close, some straight talk from a Milwaukee Police Officer with 18 years on the job.

"We get up in the morning, get dressed like everybody else," Officer Trevor DeBoer tells CBS 58 News. "Except when I say goodbye to my kids I do it for two reasons. One reason is to say I love them. The other is it may be the last time depending on the day I'm having." 

It's a reminder for all that there's flesh and blood behind the badge.

Officer DeBoer is part of MPD's tactical uni. He notably used his combat training with the National Guard to stop a gunshot victim from bleeding out in a high profile shooting near 24th and Locust a few years back that wounded five people.

The officer says in his 18 year of law enforcement he's never seen respect for officers so low.

"You really have to want to do this job. It's unforgiving. It seems the world is out there to get you and you just want to protect it."

In 1962, President John F. Kennedy proclaimed May 15 "National Peace Officer's Memorial Day" and National Police Week as the week which encompasses May 15.  National Police Week 2016 is May 15 until May 21.  

On Friday, May 20, 2016, the 26th annual Wisconsin Law Enforcement Memorial Ceremony was held at noon at the memorial site located on the Capitol grounds in Madison, WI. The annual ceremony, honoring and remembering Wisconsin law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty, is held in correlation with National Police Week activities.  

During this year's ceremony four names were officially added to the memorial, bringing the total amount of Wisconsin law enforcement officers listed on the memorial to 270.  

Two of those names are historical deaths; Racine County Sheriff's Office Deputy Arthur G. Herman, on May 15, 1920, Deputy Herman was searching for an escapee from jail.  Deputy Herman was going to a train station, when he lost control of his patrol motorcycle and collided with a street car.  Deputy Herman was fatally injured in the crash.  Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office Deputy Earl R. Haslam, on December 29, 1928, Deputy Haslam was returning to headquarters after serving civil papers.  Deputy Haslam lost control of his patrol motorcycle and collided with another vehicle.  On January 4, 1929, Deputy Haslam succumbed to his injuries sustained in the crash.

The two recent deaths include; Wisconsin State Patrol Trooper Trevor J. Casper, on March 24, 2015, Trooper Casper was attempting to apprehend a robbery and murder suspect, when he was fatally shot by the suspect.  McFarland Police Department Officer Ryan P. Copeland, on November 23, 2015, Officer Copeland was operating his take home squad car enroute to pick up his K9 partner when an oncoming vehicle crossed the center line and struck his patrol squad head-on.  Copeland was fatally injured in the crash.

Share this article: