Disappointed in retired cop

Rather than base many of his opinions on what he reads in the Journal, Mr. McLaine, of Lewis, Colo., may be better served to meet our current Sheriff for coffee and donuts and get his information straight from the horse’s mouth. He would find that as a Constitutional Sheriff, Dennis is not just interested in protecting our 2nd Amendment rights but all of our Constitutional rights, including the 4th Amendment. He would also learn Sheriff Spruell has demonstrated this many times including going to bat for our rights on public lands and by joining other Sheriffs of Colorado to defend our 2nd Amendment rights. And I for one am glad he has and continue to strongly support him as our sheriff.

Like Mr. McLaine, I too moved to this area after retiring from a very large and well respected law enforcement agency. As a retired peace officer, what McLaine wrote disappointed me. Instead of investigating from all angles, he seems to have based many of his opinions on what he reads in the Journal. His tone was similar to that of someone who is anti-cop. He even tried to incense his readers by mentioning the race of an arrestee. Coming from a large agency, Mr. McLaine must know someone, maybe even himself, who has been sued or internally investigated for some action or inaction. What happened to “innocent until proven guilty?” Being in jeopardy of being sued is part of a cop’s lot. Often, decisions that a cop needs to make in a matter of split seconds get days, even months of after-action scrutiny.

My experience is that many of these lawsuits often are dismissed by the courts as having no basis. Mr. McLaine must have also known cops who were good that turned bad. All cops get a black eye when this happens. Unfortunately, their bosses are most often unaware of the bad cop’s actions until they are discovered. It is true that superiors are responsible for the actions of their subordinates. That is not to mean they share the guilt of the action, but that they are responsible for investigating the indiscretion or crime and taking the proper administrative action. I have not seen any evidence that Sheriff Spruell covered anything up relative to the actions of the former Undersheriff Cronk. Appropriate action was taken. That undersheriff has been dismissed and has pleaded guilty in a court of law to his crimes. Subsequently, Sheriff Spruell hired a qualified and trustworthy replacement, tasking her to keep a closer eye on operations and on what we would all expect should be very high-trust employees.

And yes, it is their job to make the Sheriff look good!

Ken Hoyle