To All Officers Who Attended The Arraignment of Officer Richard Haste Yesterday,
We live in an ever changing world. A world where self-restraint takes a backseat to carelessness, overreaction, and mistakes. However we still live in a world where hindsight is 20/20, mistakes become clear, and we work to make things right. You may think I’m about to scorn Officer Haste for the murder of Ramarley Graham, I’m not. Officer Haste made a major mistake and now the courts will decide his fate. This incident makes my head hang low, very low, enough said. It’s been brought to our attention that at the arraignment in Bronx Criminal Court yesterday, there were several officers cheering for officer Haste, cheering while both the Graham family and general public looked on weeping, and shouting in anger.
First off, a death is never something to cheer about, even the best generals in world history understood this, they honored the dead, whether they were the dead of the enemy, or the dead of their own, they honored the dead. There was no honor yesterday. The public will always scream with fury over injustice, and it’s up to you to set the example. I saw no good example set yesterday. Officer Haste made a grave mistake. Mistakes need to be corrected. I saw no corrections made yesterday. This may be the point where you stop reading this, but, I hope you continue.
If you took part in the cheering yesterday, then I want you to understand that you were cheering the end of Officer Hastes’ career, and most likely his freedom, you also applauded the death of a young kid as if his death was well deserved. Maybe you cheered in opposition to the anger put forth by the public, maybe you cheered because other officers were cheering, it really doesn’t matter. What matters here is honor, and the lack of it shown yesterday in Bronx Criminal Court.
I could continue on about how wrong what transpired yesterday was, but you may already be looking back on it thinking the same, hindsight is 20/20, if not I’m sure your CO’s have already talked with you, but maybe they haven’t, and if not, then that is a major problem. Maybe it were your superiors who led the cheering, it doesn’t matter. I want you to understand how you just put the safety of all Bronx officers in jeopardy in just a few minutes time in Bronx Criminal Court by posing a question, but before I do,
It wasn’t long ago that you lost a highly decorated officer. His name was Peter Figoski, he was a Detective in Brooklyn’s 75th precinct and his life was taken too soon. Thankfully the killer (Lamont Pride) was caught, and is being brought to justice. Det. Figoski was awarded the Medal of Honor this week for his service, he left behind 4 daughters, his wife, his parents, and a very large community who will never forget him.
Det. Figoski had a family who cared about him, he had a community who cared about him, both in Brooklyn, and in you, the NYPD. I’m sitting here wondering, and can’t for the life of me imagine what your reaction would be, or how you would feel as extended family of Det. Figoski, if Brooklyn residents, and friends of Lamont Pride were to show up in court to cheer him on, making a mockery of your loss. While Pride, and Haste are entirely different men, the families they left in their wake are not. Yesterday you did the victims, and both their families an injustice, and you did it in front of the entire community.
Ramarley Graham left behind a family and community who now seeks justice. While the young boys’ family and community do not wear badges, they weep, and seek justice just the same. Your actions yesterday sent a blanket message to that community. The message was that this is war, gangland style, and you could give half a shit about the victims involved as a result of it. My question to you is this, with the amount of criminal activity, and illegal firearms in the Bronx, do you think that sending the message you did was intelligent? Do you understand you’ve sown hate? The sort of hate that can lead unstable criminal minds in the Bronx to commit the hate driven murder of yet another officer? Do you want to attend another funeral such as Det. Figoskis’ and know, that blood will be on your hands. Did you think before you acted? Of course you didn’t. A court room with cameras is a place to show self restraint, it’s a place where you set the example, and offer your condolences to the victims, that means, that if you have nothing mending to say, you say nothing, and stay silent.
You may be wondering, who I am to tell you anything, and my answer is this; I am nobody, and this nobody is telling you to make right on your actions yesterday, and think before you act. Your actions show the same lack of restraint Officer Haste showed, and in only a few minutes time, you’ve sown hate, widened the gap between the police and the public, and you’ve put the safety of officers you’ll never meet in jeopardy, and you don’t even realize it. – This as your wake up call, I encourage all Deputy Chiefs and Captains to have a word with your officers about this – Thank You
For what it’s worth, I’d like to offer my condolences to the Graham family – Danny @ OcPo
Detective Figoski’s Family Ramarley Graham’s Family
There’s nothing here worth cheering about -