Explorations in Policing, Faith and Life (With a hint of humor, product reviews, news and whatever catches my attention)

Monday, November 30, 2009

Four Lakewood Police Officers-May you all rest in peace

I have spent a lot of time with my co-workers at the beginning or the end of shifts at different coffee houses.  A truly evil person came in and took these Lakewood Police Officers lives, it easily could have been me or anyone that I work with.  At times like these I rarely know what to say other than I know that:

1.  God is always good-Daniel 9:7 -"Righteousness belongs to You, O Lord, but to us open shame,
2.  God is always working for good-Romans 8:28
3. God Loves us-John 3:16 - "For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotton Son, that whosoever believes in Him, will have everlasting life." 
This verse is so important because it shows that God loved the world (Every person who has ever been born or will be born) so much that He was willing to allow His one and only Son to be born into the sin filled world; just so we can live eternal life with Him one day, if we chose to.
4.  He will never leave us-Deuteronomy 31:8 - "And the Lord, He is the One who goes before you. he will be with you, He will not leave you nore forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed." 
5.  His justice is perfect-1 Timothy 1:9-1We also know that law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious; for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for adulterers and perverts, for slave traders and liars and perjurers--and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine that conforms to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me."

These men died serving their community.  Why God allowed this to happen and how with will be used to further his perfect plan-I will only know when I am finally reunited with him.  As for now I can just fall back on the above five promises, and pray for the people these men left behind. 

A look at the four police officers who were slain at a suburban coffee shop on Sunday:
Sgt. Mark Renninger, 39
Renninger was described as a cop's cop: A tough guy who excelled at his job and was regarded as a leader and teacher in the close-knit Lakewood police force.
"He was the most competent and tactically proficient man I ever knew in police work. I do not say this because he was killed and that is something you should say," Lakewood police union president Brian Wurts said. "Everyone in our department and all who knew Mark know this was true."
Relatives said Renninger, who grew up in Bethlehem, Pa., came to Washington state through military service. The East Coast native was blunt-spoken but "never belittled anyone," Wurts said.
"Mark had that spark that made you like him and respect him. He was truly a rock in our department, someone you always counted on," Wurts wrote.
The union said Renninger was married with three children.
Officer Tina Griswold, 40
Her sister, Tiffiny Ryan, said Griswold liked to cook, ride her dirt bike and was a certified diver.
"My worst nightmare has come true," Ryan told reporters on Monday. "I can't tell you how painful it is to lose my sister."
Griswold knew she wanted to be a police officer by the time she finished high school, a weeping Ryan said.
Their father is a retired police officer, while their mother was an administrative assistant at the Washington Supreme Court, Ryan said.
Tina Griswold began working in law enforcement as a dispatcher in Shelton, then became a police officer in Shelton and Lacey before going to work in Lakewood five years ago, Ryan said.
Griswold also has a 21-year-old daughter and a 7-year-old son, Ryan said.
Officer Ronald Owens, 37
Relatives said Owens - known to friends and family as Ronnie - was a lifelong resident of Parkland, the Tacoma suburb where he was killed. The police union said Owens has a daughter.
Wurts said Owens' fun-loving personality "made everyone around him feel positive."
He "was the laid-back, dirt-bike-riding, surfer-hair-having cop you would always want at a party or with you on any call," Wurts said. "Though he had a laid-back perspective, he was sharp and an extremely dedicated and hard worker."
Owens was a Washington State Patrol trooper from 1997 until 2004, when he left to join the Lakewood police, Patrol Chief John Batiste said.
"While we have many ranks and honors that we offer for exemplary service, the most coveted honor is to simply be respected by your colleagues as 'a good troop,'" Batiste said. "Ron Owens was most definitely a good troop."
Officer Greg Richards, 42
Richards liked nothing better than spending time with his wife Kelly and three children, the union president said.
Richards enjoyed music in his spare time, playing drums in a rock band that performed this summer at a charity event for a hospitalized fellow-officer.
Richards was liked by everyone he met, sister-in-law Melanie Burwell said. Even though the family knew his job could be dangerous, his death was a shock, she said.
What happened...and how this man should never had been out of prison to kill.

Former Arkansas governor/GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee might have made a huge mistake when he commuted Maurice Clemmons' 60-year prison sentence nine years ago: Now, Clemmons is wanted for questioning in the horrific shooting of four Washington State police officers.
This morning, a man walked into a coffee shop in Lakewood, Washington and opened fire, killing four police officers in what officials are calling an "execution-style" shooting. Now police are looking to question 37 year-old Maurice Clemmons, who theSeattle Times reports has had a long criminal history. It started in 1990, when Clemmons was sentenced to 60 years in prison in Arkansas for burglary and theft of property:
When Clemmons received the 60-year sentence, he was already serving 48 years on five felony convictions and facing up to 95 more years on charges of robbery, theft of property and possessing a handgun on school property. Records from Clemmons' sentencing described him as 5-foot-7 and 108 pounds. The crimes were committed when he was 17.
Clemmons served 11 years before being released.
News accounts say Huckabee commuted Clemmons' sentence, citing Clemmons' young age at the time the crimes were committed.
After Huckabee freed Clemmons it was all downhill: According to the Seattle Times report, Clemmons racked up eight felony charges after moving to Washington—the most recent being second-degree rape of a child, for which he had been in jail pending a trial for the past few months. Clemmons was released from jail six days ago after posting his $150,000 bail with help from a company called Jail Sucks Bail Bonds.
Then he might have gunned down four police officers this morning:
Sgt. Mark Renninger, Officers Ronald Owens, Tina Griswold and Greg Richards.

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