Editor Warning: This story is filled with graphic violence and may be disturbing to some readers.
Editor Note: This article was submitted by a former police officer who has requested remaining anonymous. We’ve published the article under the name Sgt. A. Merica, as we have with the submissions of many other LEOs who need to remain anonymous because of their professions. While we at Law Enforcement Today don’t always agree with the perspectives of our contributors, we believe in giving them a voice in an age where censorship seems to be taking the place of civil discourse.
It was a clear night with just the right amount of chill in the air to make it comfortable to wear body armor.
The midnight shift had been relatively slow and a few of us were taking a break in a parking lot just shooting the shit when the call came over the radio. We were dispatched to a “call for police” and the address given was a payphone at a closed business.
It wasn’t uncommon in my beat to get a call like that to get the police to respond on one end of the beat in order for something serious to take place on the other end. Believing it may be a “crow call,” I headed there alone.
Upon my arrival, I saw a female wearing very short cotton shorts and a skimpy tank top. As I approached her I could tell she was sobbing, and when I asked what was wrong she simply said, “he raped me.”
I click on my flashlight and placed it under my arm to start taking notes after I called for the ambulance, and that’s when I saw blood running down her thighs. The female told me that was from him “cleaning her out” with a removable shower head after he had raped her several times over the last several hours. While talking to her I found out she was only fourteen years old, and had run away from home earlier in the night.
She began telling me little details about the man who she said raped her, the house where it happened, the surrounding buildings, and the path she had taken to get to the payphone. Although she didn’t know the man’s name, I knew exactly who she was talking about, and exactly where this had taken place. I also knew he had a history of violent crimes and wouldn’t be willing to cooperate.
By this time several other cars had shown up on scene, including one officer who was very by the book. I promptly advised him to stay with the ambulance and wait with the victim at the hospital until a detective got there.
Then I met with the other officers to tell them what had happened, and see who was ready to get this guy. A couple of them knew this was going to be playing in the grey area and opted out, but several others agreed we needed to handle the situation.
We quietly positioned ourselves around the perimeter of the house and when everyone was ready I knocked on the door and called for the man by name. Immediately a man’s voice shouted, “who there?”
Read: I Won’t Kill Myself
I identified myself and told him to open the door so we could talk. The man then yelled, “I ain’t do nothing to that gal!” That statement right there sealed the deal in my mind that we were right on track because nobody said anything about a female. So with that I began to prop the screen door open.
As I was propping the screen door, another officer asked me what was going on. I told him I smelled smoke, and it kinda sounded like someone was calling for help inside. That meant we had to kick the door to make sure someone wasn’t in need of life saving assistance. The other officer stepped around the corner as I kicked the front door. The metal door finally buckled and swung wide open with the third blow.
The smell of bleach hit me like a freight train and nearly took my breath away. I shined my flashlight inside the open doorway and saw the man standing over a bucket with a mop in his hands. He was in the middle of cleaning the crime scene. We made eye contact as he took a combative stance and raised the mop handle as if it were a baseball bat. I calmly told him that he had really “fucked up” and began to walk through the door.
As I got closer, I holstered my duty weapon to free up my hands. I knew he would probably hit me once as I closed the distance with him and that was fine by me because that was nothing compared to what he was going to get if he did.
Sure enough, he got one good swing in that caught me on my left side, but it didn’t slow me down. I took him to the ground and with my knee on his chest I began punching him. I punched him until I felt a snap in my hand. I knew immediately it was broken, but it just angered me more so I kept swinging. It wasn’t until another officer yelled that my hand was broken that I began using my elbow to deliver blows. I hit him until I could barely lift my arm. When I was done I put him in handcuffs and transported him to the jail while other officers handled the crime scene.
It wasn’t until I returned for my next shift that I learned the prosecuting attorney refused to issue any charges against the subject. Their reasoning had nothing to do with anything we had done or any lack of evidence, it was simply because they didn’t believe it would be easy to maintain contact with the 14-year-old victim since she lived in another state.
So really the only justice that 14-year-old girl got was what was delivered on the tile floor of that living room when he was taken into custody. This stuff happens more often than anyone wants to believe.
It was also in that moment that I knew I could no longer hold the Thin Blue Line in the way that officers are meant to. More and more, we are handcuffing our police officers.
To a degree, I understand it. The idea of a vigilante officer operating in the gray space of the law is dangerous. The idea of law and order was once defined by morals and ethics. Right and wrong. Good vs. evil.
Now it’s becoming more and more defined by politics and convenience. We’re no longer enforcing the law, we’re changing it to make it more convenient. Look no further than Massachusetts, where the A.G. is decriminalizing a string of crimes. Look no further than “sanctuary states”. Look no further than the fact that this scumbag got to walk free because it would be “inconvenient” to prosecute him.
I could not, in good faith, continue to be a police officer. To do so would have continued to expose me to more grave injustices that I would have felt compelled to fix on my own. That is not what an individual who holds the Thin Blue Line does. The profession deserves men and women of stronger restraint than me.
Today, I do not wear a uniform. And I am glad. For I am not the Sheepdog. I am the Wolf.