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The Prescott Daily Courier | Prescott, Arizona

home : opinions : opinions August 28, 2014

3/24/2013 8:29:00 PM
Letter: Good deputy reflects the majority of officers


I am pretty diligent about keeping within the posted speed limit. Today, however, my lead foot got away from me and I was pulled over. Rightfully so, as I was indeed speeding. I was very apologetic to the sheriff's deputy who pulled me over on Williamson Valley Road, a Deputy Keough. I want to commend this deputy publicly, since there has been so much bad press about our local law enforcement officers.

I assumed I would receive a citation, which I deserved. However, Deputy Keough offered to give me just a warning, even though I didn't ask to be "let off." He was professional, courteous and polite. He asked for my proof of insurance and registration. After he finished with my documents and gave them back to me, I had to comment on the recent situation with the Iron Brotherhood controversy.

I told Deputy Keough that I, for one, still had respect for law enforcement officers, and I was saddened that a few bad apples had cast such a black eye on professional officers such as himself.

I am not defending those officers who were directly involved in the altercation downtown on Dec. 22. I am merely observing that there are many good officers in all branches of the tri-city area, who are embarrassed by the actions of an extremely small segment of their forces. Before we as citizens yell, "off with their heads," it might behoove us to realize that there are two sides to every situation, and the truth is usually somewhere in the middle.

Thank you to Deputy Keough, not for letting me slide, but for your professionalism and dedication to your position.

Nancy O'Brien


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Reader Comments

Posted: Friday, March 29, 2013
Article comment by: @ Perspective Please

You are spot on with your post, 'Perspective Please'. As Nancy states in her LTE, that the "truth is usually somewhere in the middle", it may change your perspective as to why this letter was written if you asked her if she has had any involvement in this matter of the Iron Brotherhood/Whiskey Row incident.

Posted: Friday, March 29, 2013
Article comment by: Perspective Please

It makes no sense to me that every time there is a scandle involving law enforcement, we get to hear over and over again that not all of the police act that way. I have never seen anybody post that all police are corrupt. The fact is that two dozen members of the Iron Brotherhood "Whiskey Row" chapter, attended that Christmas party. A few bad apples does not apply. Maybe you could stretch five into a few but a few is three not twenty-four. Noboby said they are all bad.

Posted: Friday, March 29, 2013
Article comment by: Hometown Homie

Nancy, for someone who professes to respect police officers, you seem mighty amazed that one treated you with courtesy. I don't even like cops, and I expect them to be polite, at least during any encounter that doesn't involve a warrant. Why would you expect anything less?

Posted: Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Article comment by: Ted's Perspective

Outrageous behavior of abandoning socially norms put the public at odds with those representing government. We do this during times of stress, by stereotyping. Obviously most of those representing government are not the cause of the problem. We need to agree what is outrageous and how to improve the circumstances.

Posted: Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Article comment by: Discretion At Work

Here is a prefect example of discretion being applied in Officer/Citizen contact. A real human understood the situation - not a camera. A citizen acknowledged her actions and was given leniency in accordance with her record, attitude and the circumstances surrounding the stop. The driver acknowledged the error and undoubtedly will correct her driving in the future. This is the desired end result of Law Enforcement and it's called "VOLUNTARY COMPLIANCE." Those who argue against discretion being applied by law enforcement undoubtedly had or have the existence of criteria-ATTITUDE.

Posted: Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Article comment by: Public Opinion

Public outcrying over less than stellar LEOs has hopefully put reality into perspective for all the LE agencies.

Courtesy, professionalism, honesty, integrity should be a standard requirement (and expected) for anyone wearing a LE badge period.

Certainly LEOs are going to bend over backwards to do public relations in order to turn public trust and opinion around after the Iron Brotherhood fiasco. Too bad it took some jerky cops to bring this effort into focus.

Does everyone that will be stopped by an officer for speeding get a warning now?

Posted: Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Article comment by: Nancy O'Brien

@Karigan Greenjean

You know nothing about me.

I already looked at his name badge to remember it, BEFORE I knew I wasn't getting a citation.

I deserved it, and, unlike many people today, OWN UP to my mistakes and shortcomings.

Had Deputy Keough given me my well deserved citation, you would have seen an IDENTICAL letter, recognizing his professionalism and dedication to duty. It just would have cost me somewhat more to write it.

Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013
Article comment by: Karigan Greenjean

I'm sure if the officer wrote you up the ticket, we all would never be reading this editorial nor hearing of his professionalism and dedication to his position.

Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013
Article comment by: dog bone

I believe there are bad apples in every walk of life and in every business. 98%of law enforcement are good people and do their job correctly. Some believe that their families should be exempt from all the laws that is the problem. The photo redar did a good job. Even through I do not live in Prescott Valley I did slow down when I saw one. Most people who complain go over the speed limit anywhere and don't want anyone catching them. They are the ones that causes the wrecks.

Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013
Article comment by: John Citizen

Nice article, but not when law officers break the law themselves and have it covered up.

Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013
Article comment by: Yes there are good cops

Probably most of the cops are good. That is what really separates us from third world countries, as we don't expect to pay a bribe every time we get pulled over. ...
One thing that bothered me was a county cop drove in front of my house while I was in the drive way. He gave me a really ugly look. I thought that was very unprofessional. ...
Probably 98% of DPS are good, as they are better trained. Then there is Prescott Valley. So it's a mixed bag.

Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013
Article comment by: Tom Steele

Nancy you point out the rule of law is one we "all" have to respect. The Photo Radar issue in Prescott Valley points out the option to be considered for a warning or possibly being able to plead you case is only available from a sworn officer.

Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013
Article comment by: Retired L.E. Supervisor

I have concerns regarding the training, ethics and veracity of the traffic enforcement practices performed by officers in the Prescott Valley/Prescott area. I fully understand the object of L.E. is to promote traffic safety, instill compliance by the motoring public and implant public confidence in their Officers. What I can’t agree with is their tactics used to achieve the desired results.
Why is it necessary to locate their units out of public view during darkness, darkened out on center dividers, concealed under overpasses, backed out of public view in side streets or setting signals at intersections to flash “red” when not necessary, all under the pretext to catch a traffic violator?
While all this is annoying and conveys concepts of unethical practices, legally I do not believe there is nothing wrong with it outside of setting up emergency conditions where they don’t apply (Flashing Red Signaled Intersections). Supervisory accountability plays a large part in these practices to make sure their charge complies with the law and organizational policies. In an age where there is a lack of public trust in the government practices, the uniformed officer is generally the only visible representative of government authority most of the public comes in contact with. I would suggest with all respect they employ their responsibilities, to ensure ethical and responsible compliance of their charge is done to help build and maintain the public trust they swore to uphold. High visibility ensures public voluntary compliance practices more often than other tactics.

Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013
Article comment by: Kudos to you...

Thank you for this letter, its nice to know that there are people out there who respect law enforcement. Even though there may be a few "bad apples" (as you put it so well), doesn't mean that every one of them is "bad" and "corrupt."

Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013
Article comment by: whats that on your nose on your nose?

Geez, we all know what you are saying, but we don't all write to the paper about it. "Mr Keough, next time you see me, don't forget I was the one that wrote to the paper about you, and if you ever see my picture on the speed cameras............never mind, I guess one has already been caught doing that........"

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