What you give, is what you get. This sounds clichéd, but at times we need to remind this fact to ourselves. This story of a man’s encounter with police has something to learn from.
Steven Hildreth Jr. was pulled over by the Tucson Police Department since he had broken a headlight. Upon being asked if he was carrying any weapons with him, he said he is a concealed carry permit holder and added that he had a gun on his right hip. Since his wallet was in his back right pocket, the officer needed to disarm him so as to check his ID.
Hildreth needed the world to know what happened next, so he shared his experience on his Facebook profile.
So, I'm driving to my office to turn in my weekly paperwork. A headlight is out. I see a Tucson Police Department squad…
The post Reads:
So, I’m driving to my office to turn in my weekly paperwork. A headlight is out. I see a Tucson Police Department squad vehicle turn around and follow me. I’m already preparing for the stop.
The lights go on and I pull over. The officer asks me how I’m doing, and then asks if I have any weapons.
“Yes, sir. I’m a concealed carry permit holder and my weapon is located on my right hip. My wallet is in my back right pocket.”
The officer explains for his safety and mine, he needs to disarm me for the stop. I understand, and I unlock the vehicle. I explain that I’m running a 7TS ALS holster but from the angle, the second officer can’t unholster it. The lead officer asks me to step out, and I do so slowly. Officer relieves me of my Glock and compliments the X300U I’m running on it. He also sees my military ID and I tell him I’m with the National Guard.
The lead officer points out my registration card is out of date but he knows my registration is up to date. He goes back to run my license. I know he’s got me on at least two infractions. I’m thinking of how to pay them.
Officers return with my Glock in an evidence back, locked and cleared. “Because you were cool with us and didn’t give us grief, I’m just going to leave it at a verbal warning. Get that headlight fixed as soon as possible.”
I smile. “Thank you, sir.”
I’m a black man wearing a hoodie and strapped. According to certain social movements, I shouldn’t be alive right now because the police are allegedly out to kill minorities.
Maybe…just maybe…that notion is bunk.
Maybe if you treat police officers with respect, they will do the same to you.
Police officers are people, too. By far and large, most are good people and they’re not out to get you.
I’d like to thank those two officers and TPD in general for another professional contact.
We talk so much about the bad apples who shouldn’t be wearing a badge. I’d like to spread the word about an example of men who earned their badges and exemplify what that badge stands for.
His post was heard loud on Facebook with thousands of positive responses. He got backlash from some people too, which was expected considering the sensitivity of the topic.
While he appreciates and supports law enforcement, he acknowledges the fact that there are officials who betray the public trust. He also acknowledges the existence of abuse and explains the reason that LEOs are humans and humans are not infallible. With that said, he emphasizes that law enforcement and citizen must remain vigilant.
Hildreth definitely gives us a new perspective on law enforcement. Don’t you this so?