Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Officer James M. Goodman

California Highway Patrol, California

End of Watch Thursday, June 3, 2004

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Reflections for Officer James M. Goodman

“When God made Peace Officers….”

When the lord was creating Peace Officers, he was into his sixth day of overtime when an angel appeared and said, “You’re doing a lot of fiddling around on this one.”

And the Lord said, Have you read the spec on this order? A Peace Officer has to be able to run five miles through alleys in the dark, scale walls, enter homes the health inspector wouldn’t touch, and not wrinkle their uniform.

They have to be able to sit in an undercover car all day on a stakeout, cover a homicide scene that night, canvass the neighborhood for witnesses, and testify in court the next day.

They have to be in top physical condition at all times, running on black coffee and half- eaten meals. And they have to have six pairs of hands.

The angel shook her head slowly and said, “Six pairs of hands….No Way.”

“It’s not the hands that are causing me the problems,” said the Lord, “It’s the three pairs of eyes an officer has to have.”

That’s on the standard model? asked the angel.

The Lord nodded. One pair that sees through a bulge in a pocket before he asks, “May I see what’s in there sir?” (When they already know and wishes they had taken that accounting job.) Another pair here in the side of their head for their partners’ safety. And another pair of eyes here in front that can look reassuringly at a bleeding victim and say, “ You’ll be alright ma’am, when they know it isn’t so.”

“Lord,” said the angel, touching his sleeve,” rest and work tomorrow.”

“I can’t,” said the Lord, “I already have a model that can talk a 250 pound drunk into a patrol car without incident and feed a family of five on civil service paycheck.”

The angel circled the model of the Peace Officer very slowly, “Can it think?” she asked.

“You bet,” said the Lord, “It can tell you elements of a hundred crimes, recite Miranda warnings in it’s sleep; detain, investigate, search, and arrest a gang member on the street in less time than it takes five judges to debate the legality of the stop…and still it keeps it’s sense of humor.

This officer also has phenomenal personal control. They can deal with crime scenes painted in HELL, coax a confession from a child abuser, comfort a murder victim’s family’ and then read in the daily paper how Law Enforcement isn’t sensitive to the rights of criminal suspects.

Finally, the angel bent over and ran her finger across the cheek of the Peace Officer. “There’s a leak,” she pronounced. “I told you that you were trying to put too much into this model.”

“That’s not a leak,” said the Lord, “It’s a tear.”

“What’s the tear for?” asked the angel.

“It’s for bottled-up emotions, for fallen comrades, for commitment to that funny piece of cloth called the American flag, and for justice.”

“You’re a genius,” said the angel.

The Lord looked sober. “I didn’t put it there,” he said.


Anonymous

Senior Instructor
Federal Law Enforcement Training Center

June 4, 2004

thank you for protecting us, so we may live another day. my condolenses to your family for they also gave the ultimate sacrifice.

June 4, 2004

Rest easy brother. God will take care of you now.

June 4, 2004

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