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Integrity — what integrity?


I am confused, following all the articles in all of the local newspapers concerning the issues of “who done it” in regards to the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.

It is my understanding that the primary job description for law enforcement is to “serve and protect.”

It seems to me that the primary job requirements for these same law enforcement personnel are “honesty and integrity,” beyond necessary technical training. If we can’t trust them, how can we be expected to believe they will perform their function properly and to support them in that endeavor? When these individuals break the public trust, through obvious and admitted lack of personal integrity for their work (displaying a pitiful sense of personal character), why should they be treated any differently than any of us in the private sector?

Forget criminal offenses and statute of limitations on punishable law infractions; let’s just focus on pure integrity to perform their work.

So, a deputy sheriff claims to have knowledge and experience (that he doesn’t possess) and is promoted to a special position, receives more pay and special consideration and then later admits (after his untruth is discovered) that he “misrepresented” himself and was not actually qualified for that work. Where I come from, that’s called lying (and stealing), displays a total lack of integrity, and I would have been summarily fired. Not the deputy sheriff; he’s held to a different level of personal character, much lower than mine in the aviation field. He carries a gun; how safe does that make me feel?

I don’t want him tried in court for being a liar and a thief. I want him removed from the public payroll and replaced with someone who actually holds and displays a better sense of character and honor. The entire saga, as printed in the papers, reads like a bad children’s bedtime story. The county attorney and sheriff (past and present) appear bent on sweeping it all under the rug. Man up and hold this department to a standard we can all respect; stop the quibbling over psychiatric misevaluations and statutes of limitation. Simply do what’s right.

Michael Gale


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