Police officer: I was ambushed, beaten and shot. That was only the start of my battle.

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This editorial has been submitted to Law Enforcement Today by Jeremy Scharlow.

On May 7, 2016, I found myself in a position every police officer dreads.

With no provocation or warning I was attacked, punched in the head and shoulders, and eventually shot for simply trying to tell someone their headlights were not working.

Shockingly, the physical healing process was not terrible. I was able to regain most of the use in my dominate arm and I now only suffer from moderate nerve pain and minor mobility/strength issues.

Although physically “okay,” my mental state was an entirely different story.

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I had spent countless hours practicing all the tactical scenarios I could imagine. I visualized what I would do if injured and what I would do to ensure I would never fail.

The movements and methods became second nature. I could draw and fire accurately while under pressure and was confident in my tactical abilities. I knew, if confronted, I would never lose a fight.

I then found myself shot. I had been ambushed.

I survived the physical attack, being repeatedly punched in the head and shoulders, and being shot in my dominate shooting arm. I survived!

Immediately after my ambush, I felt immortal.

I felt as though I could not die and that I could overcome any attack that came against me. Although I thought I was prepared for any fight, I found myself completely unprepared for the battle I would soon face. The battle in my own mind.

I began having nightmares and other issues associated with PTSD. Over time, I began struggling more, began dealing with suicidal ideation, depression, and turned to alcohol to help “numb” the pain.

In my quest to numb the pain through alcohol, I made one of the dumbest decisions of my life. I got behind the wheel of a vehicle and decided to drive while intoxicated.

I could give several “reasons” why I made the decision to get behind the wheel and drive after consuming copious amounts of alcohol. Not a single one of them would justify the action itself. I risked my life and the life of others, all because I was unable to cope with my own issues in a healthy manner.

Luckily, before I hurt someone, I was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol.

Although it was the correct action, my arrest helped drive me to the lowest point I had yet encountered. I found myself feeling as though nothing I did mattered, I felt shame, and I felt useless.

I regularly battled intrusive suicidal thoughts and I found myself mixing alcohol and prescription drugs to help me forget.

This landed me in the hospital. Having mixed my prescription drugs and alcohol I began audibly hallucinating. I heard voices telling me how worthless I was and how I did not have any reason to live. I called for help and I physically resisted the help that was sent.

In my altered state, I believed my fellow officers were attempting to hurt me. I said some of the vilest awful things to these men and women who were simply trying to get me the help I needed.

After waking in the hospital the next morning, I realized I was failing at managing my emotional state and allowing it to rule my life. I decided that alcohol and other substances used to help “numb the pain” were doing nothing but causing more trouble. I decided to look of other options.

I began speaking about my experiences. I discussed my ambush, how I was injured, my healing process, the difficulties with my department and the retirement system, my firing, amongst other things.

Sharing my pain, allowed others to see. It allowed others to recognize the difficulties I was dealing with and I found empathy. While empathy helped, it was not enough. I continued to find myself struggling while I continued to look for new ways to help heal.

This is when Operation Enduring Warrior (OEW) found me. In the depths of my abyss, thinking no one understood how helpless, how ashamed, and how worthless I felt; these men and women showed me the light within the darkness.

I found a tribe of other “fucked up” individuals experiencing a lot of the emotions and difficulties I was more than familiar with. I became deeply involved with OEW and through my involvement I found new purpose. This purpose gave me hope… a reason to get up every morning and do better.

I found a place where the focus was removed from my injuries (both physical and mental). I was surrounded by other officers, military vets, and fire fighters (some of them missing limbs) who all shared their experiences of trauma and how they had found ways to cope. No matter the background, the message was the same. NOT DEAD… CAN’T QUIT.

I found myself in a position where I thought myself useful again. I would be able to continue my service to others, although not as I had originally thought. I was thrust into a position where I could help our brother’s and sister’s struggling by showing them a path to healing. A bath that begins in service to others.

To do better I knew I needed to make life changes. I created healthy routines including working out and I limiting my alcohol consumption. I increased my participation in counseling and for the first time in years, I set goals.

Almost immediately my mental, physical, and emotional wellbeing improve dramatically. In finding my tribe with OEW, I found my family. I found others who refuse to become a statistics and live to help others. They showed me through action, that healing is found in service to others.

While I continue to suffer from symptoms associated with PTSD, I have found a new calling and, in this calling, I have found personal growth and healing.

“There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.” ~ John Holmes.

National company that protects cops and their families throws support behind “Re-Fund the Police” campaign

Editor note: If you want to get in the fight and help re-fund the police, click here.

If you’re interested in learning more about protecting your family with Officer Privacy – click here – proceeds to directly into the national “re-fund the police” campaign.

CALIFORNIA – Law Enforcement Today is delighted to share with our readers that OfficerPrivacy.com has generously joined us as a corporate sponsor in our campaign to “Re-Fund the Police.”

As a loyal reader of Law Enforcement Today, you are probably aware that we initiated a campaign to back the blue and support “re-funding” rather than defunding the police, while publicizing the detrimental effects of defunding the police and the countless positive contributions to our society that our brothers and sisters in blue make every day.

Corporate sponsor OfficerPrivacy.com has dedicated itself to the “Re-Fund the Police” cause with a generous contribution to the refunding efforts.

This company is the brainchild of owner, Navy veteran, and law enforcement veteran Pete James.

In the Navy, James honorably served on an aircraft carrier as an Intelligence Specialist.

After his military service, James moved on to a 25-year career in law enforcement in California, ultimately retiring at the rank of lieutenant.

 

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James is also a computer forensics expert who has testified in both state and federal courts, and he has worked on thousands of criminal, civil, and corporate cases as a private Open-Source intelligence investigator.

He also holds several college degrees and six computer forensics certificates.

James kept in close contact with his many former colleagues in law enforcement and actively followed changes in the law enforcement community. He repeatedly heard about incidents in which a criminal found an officer’s personal information online and would then harass and dox them and their family.

In his work in forensics and his private investigations, James utilized people-search websites, the very sites that were being used to collect the private information being used to attack officers.

These sites show officers’ names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, the names of their relatives and are available to anyone performing an internet search.

Therefore, James married his expertise in law enforcement and computer forensics to create OfficerPrivacy.com, which protects officers by removing their personal data from the top 50 people-search websites and monitors those sites for any reappearance of that data.

James noted:

“After spending 25 years in law enforcement, I am using my experience, love and respect for the profession to make life safer for LEOs.

“My goal is to help provide a layer of privacy to all officers and their families.”

https://fundourpolice.com/

James and his team at OfficerPrivacy.com have created software that helps officers in all 50 states quickly and easily remove personal, private information from the most prominent people-search websites.

Furthermore, the software also monitors those websites, so if personal identifying information arises again, the officer can remove it quickly and easily.

Officers have two options for assistance at OfficerPrivacy.com.

One package features “Do-It-Yourself (with our help),” in which officers begin with a 14-day free trial of access to software that assists in removing personal identifying information.  Officers are also provided with direct links to the most prominent people-search websites, for ease of access.

Thereafter, monthly package fees allow for the officers’ continued and continuous monitoring of those people-search websites for reappearance of personal information.

The other package option is “We Do the Work for You.”  In this option, the OfficerPrivacy.com team removes officers from the top 50 people-search websites and continuously monitors those sites for personally identifying information.  Monthly package fees cover monitoring by the team for reappearance of that information.

 

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The OfficerPrivacy.com team is comprised of U.S.-based current and former law enforcement officers.

OfficerPrivacy.com is endorsed by The Deputy MagazineBlue Lives RadioBadge Boys PodcastThe Squad Room, Proud Police WifeSacramento LEO Chaplaincy, and the Police Officers’ Credit Union Assoc.

The impressive and protective benefits that OfficerPrivacy.com provides are not limited to law enforcement officers only.  In fact, approximately half of the clients are officers’ spouses or are employed in other professions, such as teachers, realtors, and lawyers.

OfficerPrivacy.com is not only committed to keeping personal information safe from the prying eyes of people-search websites, but it is also committed to limiting who can see information within the company itself.  Only vetted, active or retired law enforcement officers see client information.

Furthermore, the company keeps minimal data on clients, data which is protected by encryption and two-factor authentication.  Naturally, no client data is ever shared or sold.

LET NFT Revolution

Law Enforcement Today is immensely grateful to OfficerPrivacy.com for their tireless dedication to protecting the privacy – and safety – of police officers nationwide, and for generously walking along with us to “Re-Fund Our Police” in the face of political and media-based pushes to defund those who protect and serve.

OfficerPrivacy.com has also graciously offered to back the “Re-Fund” cause with their own media campaign efforts.

As LET’s Executive Director, Kyle S. Reyes, notes:

”In an age where countless officers are doxxed and their families are being targeted for no reason other than their service to the community, it’s crucial that we find a way to protect them from those who seek to do them harm. 

“Law Enforcement Today has partnered with OfficerPrivacy.com because there’s no greater way of helping put a digital shield of protection around them. 

“Every officer and their family need to sign up.  It’s perhaps the best ‘insurance policy’ we’ve seen yet.”

Pete James has honored Law Enforcement Today and our “Re-Fund the Police” campaign with these words:

OfficerPrivacy.com is honored to partner with Law Enforcement Today, a solid and dependable supporter of LEOs, to ‘Re-Fund The Police.’  

“Instead of cowering to those who scream the loudest, we must challenge with facts the anarchists and uninformed who want to destabilize and destroy our country by calling for defunding the police.  

“The ‘Re-Fund the Police’ marketing campaign will make great strides in educating policy makers while honoring those who stand for the thin blue line.”

Do you want to join our private family of first responders and supporters?  Get unprecedented access to some of the most powerful stories that the media refuses to show you.  Proceeds get reinvested into having active, retired and wounded officers, their families and supporters tell more of these stories.  Click to check it out.

LET Unity

Re-Fund the Police”: Law Enforcement Today launches nationwide campaign for Americans to back the blue

Originally published October 10, 2021

Editor note: In 2020, we saw a nationwide push to “defund the police”.  While we all stood here shaking our heads wondering if these people were serious… they cut billions of dollars in funding for police officers.  And as a result, crime has skyrocketed – all while the same politicians who said “you don’t need guns, the government will protect you” continued their attacks on both our police officers and our Second Amendment rights.

And that’s exactly why we’re launching this national crowdfunding campaign as part of our efforts to help “re-fund the police”.

For those looking for a quick link to get in the fight and support the cause, click here.

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA – You back the Blue.  You support the police.  You quietly buy an officer a cup of coffee at your local coffeehouse.  You bring homemade cookies to your local police station.  You make it a point to thank an officer when you see one out in public.

You watch the news, aghast to see crowds of anti-police protesters and rioters committing acts of violence and massive property damage.  You pray daily for the Blue family.

And yet, you may feel quite alone.

Politicians and the mainstream news media would have you think that police support is at an all-time low.

Some of you may have found it necessary to take down your Thin Blue Line flags from your house, or to scrape off the Thin Blue Line sticker from your vehicles, due to the potential for violent retaliation by those who hate the police.

Yes, it is the loudest voices that are the ugliest.  They revile and attack those who back the Blue.  They call, “Defund the Police!” at every turn, fueled by the lie that police officers are racists who are out to kill.

But you are actually in excellent company in your support of the blue family.

According to a Gallup poll, 85% of Americans support law enforcement.  That means supporters of the Thin Blue Line are 285 million strong.

Police officer: I was ambushed, beaten and shot.  That was only the start of my battle.
85% of Americans support Law Enforcement

That would be 285 million who, like you, refuse join in the calls to defund the police.

And that means you are in the company of those who have logic and reason on their side.

After all, we at Law Enforcement Today bring you stories daily of exploding crime in police-defunded areas such as Austin, Portland,  New York City, or Los Angeles.

Homicide rates since defunding are up 58% in Atlanta, up 533% in Portland, and up 37% in Philadelphia.

Shootings in post-defunded New York City are up 64%, and they are up 51% in Los Angeles and up 18% in Chicago.

In addition, you have also followed our disturbing and often tragic stories of attacks on police officers in the era of police defunding.

Felonious attacks on police are on the rise, as documented by the FBI’s Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted (LEOKA) Data Collection.

According to LEOKA:

“The 50 law enforcement officers feloniously killed in the first 8 months of 2021 represent a 51.5 percent increase compared to the 33 officers killed during the same period in 2020.”

Police officer: I was ambushed, beaten and shot.  That was only the start of my battle.
370 officers gave their lives in the line of duty in 2020

Also thanks to defunding, police departments across the country now lack training, resources, and equipment.  Ironically, calls for additional training in cultural awareness, de-escalation, and use of force often have to go unheeded due to the lack of financial resources.

Another irony is that the push to do away with less-lethal options such as Tasers and tear gas will simply lead to more fatal police shootings.

These alarming stories and statistics indicate beyond a doubt that defunding the police is absolutely the wrong move for this great country.  You know this, yet you and 285 million other voices are all too often silenced by social pressures as well as physical threats of violence.

You are even told, “Silence is violence,” when it comes to refusing to stand against law enforcement.

Your voice matters, and you need to be heard.

As Law Enforcement Today National Spokesman Kyle Reyes points out:

“Americans have stood by in disbelief as this ‘defund the police’ movement has spread across America and ravaged our communities. 

“We’ve watched our cities burn, our officers be attacked and violence skyrocket. 

“It’s time to come out of the twilight zone.  It’s time to fight back.”

Do you want to join our private family of first responders and supporters?  Get unprecedented access to some of the most powerful stories that the media refuses to show you.  Proceeds get reinvested into having active, retired and wounded officers, their families and supporters tell more of these stories.  Click to check it out.

LET Unity

Law Enforcement Today, the nation’s largest police-owned media outlet, has developed a way to make your voice heard and oppose those who would seek to remove funding from those who protect and serve.

It’s called the “Re-Fund the Police” campaign.

Reyes explains:

“We wanted to make the “Re-fund the Police” campaign something that everyone- whether you can spare $1 or $1 million – can be a part of.

“People will donate to politicians all day long in hopes that person will get elected and possibly make a difference.

“We are asking for people to come forward and support those who make a difference and save lives every single day.”

Through your generous donations, Law Enforcement today will direct a media and advertising blitz to rally other Americans who, like you, are done with attacks on law enforcement, both physical and financial.

Here’s what the funds go towards:

  1. We’ve assembled a “strike team” of researchers and reporters who will delve deeply into the devastating impact that defunding the police has on communities and families.  They’re going after not just the “leaders” in Congress who are pushing to defund the police… but they’re exposing everyone from the local politicians and city councils who are behind it.  They’re also tracing the money of exactly who is funding this “defund the police” movement.
  2.  We will focus on publicizing all the negative effects of defunding police while expressing support for our brothers and sisters in blue.  The advertising blitz will be a show of support for police officers all across America.

In addition, we will be sending a team of reporters into our communities to share positive stories of law enforcement, stories which are consistently ignored by the mainstream media.

As a thank-you for your generosity in standing strong for the blue family, we are offering access codes for Law Enforcement Today’s Wounded Officer documentary and Border Crisis documentary.  In addition, we offer additional perks such as stickers and Thin Blue Line face masks or yard signs.

Donors are also able to honor or memorialize a member of the blue family.

For those who cannot afford to contribute, we invite you to be a part of a nationwide chain of prayer warriors.

You can join our prayer chain along with other supporters who are willing to pray for our brothers and sisters in blue.

Police officer: I was ambushed, beaten and shot.  That was only the start of my battle.
We support those who protect and serve.

Also, when you sign up for our newsletter, we will keep you informed on how we are continuing to back the Blue, and bring you the stories the mainstream media will not touch.

Now to small businesses who are sick and tired of watching our cities burn as the “defund the police” movement spreads.

For business donors, we are pleased to offer a unique opportunity to make a difference in police departments across the country.

Reyes explains:

“We wanted to make sure small businesses could get in the fight, so we are rolling out the ‘adopt a police department’ program.”

Your business donation will be used to cover stories in the community of your choice, and expose those who are attempting to defund the police.  Those stories, if you choose, will also include a thank you to your business and a link back to your business website.

In addition, your generous business donation will go toward advertising campaigns that highlight the negative effects of demonizing and defunding the police.

Police officer: I was ambushed, beaten and shot.  That was only the start of my battle.
We’ve got your 6.

This will give you the opportunity to show to millions of Americans that, unlike “woke” anti-police organizations, you support and appreciate law enforcement.

Reyes points out:

“Corporate America rallied around the Black Lives Matter movement, donating hundreds of millions of dollars to a campaign that brought widespread looting and destruction in our cities. 

“This is an opportunity for businesses to show America that law and order and keeping people safe still means something to them.”

Please join your voice with Law Enforcement Today in this campaign to support all those who protect and serve us.

We invite you to visit the Re-Fund the Police website for further information.

If you have questions, or you want to start your own fundraising team, feel free to email us at [email protected]

It’s time to get in the fight.

______________

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