As we all know by now APD's SWAT team was involved in a shooting Tuesday evening. Initial reports indicate that officers were dispatched to a used music equipment store in reference to a fraudulent transaction. Upon arriving on scene, field officers engaged in a foot chase as one of the suspects fled. We are told an officer saw one of the suspects holding what looked like a gun. Thereafter, a perimeter was set up and a SWAT activation ensued. As SWAT units searched the area for the outstanding suspects, we are told one was cornered where after a flash-bang was thrown at him in an effort to get the suspect to surrender. We are told then a SWAT officer fired his weapon at the suspect and killed the suspect.
But in recent weeks we know the SWAT unit has seen unprecedented turnover in its leadership. Last fall we reported how the unit's lieutenant, Tim Lopez, got into a physical fight with two of his officers. Only recently was he removed from the unit and reassigned. Then last week, one of the unit's two sergeants, Alex Catsis, was reassigned to patrol duties. Now we are told that the unit's commander, Harold Medina, resigned from the unit and went to take over the Southwest Area Command. This leaves Sergeant Jim Fox as the remaining supervisor of the unit.
Now the Eye has great respect for Sgt. Fox as not only has he led the unit well, but he has extensive experience in tactical operations as he was a SWAT officer himself. What we are concerned about is the amount of liability and exposure APD's Chief Ray Schultz is thrusting upon Sgt Fox. There's a reason why there are lieutenant and commander positions overseeing the unit. There is tremendous liability and financial expenditures involved with any SWAT activation. For a single Sgt. to be left with those tasks (and the mess that Medina and Lopez no doubt left) AND to handle the immediate responsibility of a SWAT activation is simply asking so much it is totally unreasonable. In fact, one would say it is evidence of Ray Schultz's deliberate indifference to non crucial staffing needs, but effective staffing policies.
But this shouldn't surprise us. Schultz has made such a pattern and practice of poor decisions and omissions that it is now a custom to expect failures at the hands of Ray Schultz.
In the meantime, if you have a history or tactical and management experience, APD's Metro Division has some openings:
SWAT Sergeant #2: VACANT
SWAT Sergeant #1: Sgt. Jim Fox
Brave to Channel 13 New for reporting the truth on their site this morning. Channel 13 News headline is; "Suspect killed during police standoff." Channel 4 News was reporting, "Attempt to return stolen goods leads to police standoff." Channel 7 News reported, "2 businesses lock down as SWAT team searches for man with a gun."
Quote of the Day
Does this sound familiar? This is right from the dictionary and seems to describe Albuquerque, Berry and Schultz. Fascism (f ash ,izem) noun An authoritarian right wing system of government and/or social organization. (in general use) extreme right wing, authoritarian, chauvinistic and/or intolerant views or practices. Fascism tends to include a belief in the supremacy of one group over another, national, ethnic, especially social strata or monetarily; a contempt for democracy, an insistence on obedience to a powerful leader, and a strong demagogic approach. Compliments of one of our Eyes