John Ross Ferrara / Sunday, May 31 @ 4:30 p.m. / Local Government
Del Norte Sheriff Erik Apperson Shows Support for Those Protesting the Death of George Floyd
Statement from Del Norte County Sheriff Erik Apperson:
I have been informed that protests of sorts may begin today in Del Norte County. As it is a constitutional right to do so, I support the freedom to peaceably assemble whole heartedly. All people should be represented and all voices should be able to speak without fear. That said, let's continue to be the example for so many other communities outside of Del Norte county.
Many of us are struggling with the images of a man losing his life while in the custody of the very people sworn to protect him. I was personally shocked and deeply disturbed to witness the tactics deployed by that officer as well as the lack of response from other nearby uniformed personnel that seemed indifferent to it. This behavior once again brings into question the merit of law enforcement as an entire industry.
I will not make excuses for, minimize or try to justify the actions of peace officers that abuse their authority or act with negligence. They deserve to be swiftly and severely punished by the same criminal justice system they are obligated to enforce. Our badges represent public trust and our service should work towards maintaining and building that trust 100% of the time.
It has been said that nobody hates bad cops more than good cops. I can absolutely assure you that sentiment rings true to the vast majority of women and men in blue, nationwide. We are your sons and daughters, your neighbors, your fellow congregants, your children's coaches and so on. Your local law enforcement in Del Norte County, be it at a city, county or state level are fantastic examples of what community policing is. I regularly witness first hand the tireless and honorable dedication demonstrated by our local first responders. I know our hearts are in the right place because our hearts are with the people we serve.
I am also confident our community will stay strong during these unprecedented times finding more in common with one another than focusing on what separates us. We have shown we can be heard while expressing our grievances without resulting to violence.
As your Sheriff, I need you to know I continue to be proud of the people that make up Del Norte County. I stand ready to serve you and protect you with everything I have.