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In a perfect world, crime would cease to exist, and dedicated NYPD officers, such as Omar Edwards and Andrew Dunton, would not be the victims of yet another act of flagrant lawlessness by yet another flagrant law−breaker.
Officer Edwards, a 25−year−old black cop, is dead; Officer Dunton, a 30−year−old white cop, is being held responsible; and an assortment of race−baiters are lurking in the wings, calling for an independent investigation into how Officer Edwards – a devoted husband and father – met his tragic end in Harlem, May 30 at 10 p.m.
The facts, at hand, point to a heart−breaking and inflammable scenario in a city with little respect for authority to begin with. Caught breaking into Edwards’s parked car, homeless junkie Miguel Goitia, 42, led the off−duty cop on a foot chase, witnessed by Dunton and two other plain−clothes officers dressed in signature colors, who followed in their unmarked car and used NYPD guidelines to exit and alert, “Police, drop the gun!”
What unfolds next brings a lump to the throat and makes the heart somersault: According to Goitia, Edwards failed to respond to the command and was felled by Dunton, who fired six shots.
Even petty crime has a way of making a perp out of the truth and clouding judgment. The exchange between Dunton and Edwards, sadly, demonstrates that cops and robbers is not a game, but the devil’s playground where a split−second decision can mean the difference between life and death. Nobody knows that better than Officer Andrew Dunton, whose punishment is to live with his fatal deed for eternity.
For that reason alone, race−mongers should put aside their broken records and walk in the charitable footsteps of the slain cop’s father.
“I feel sorry for the guy who shot my son,” magnanimously said 72−year−old Ricardo Edwards, clearly, recognizing the rigors of a job which gave his son much happiness and also claimed his life.
As the best law enforcement agency in the world, NYPD is up to the tall task of apprehending common crooks, such as Miguel Goitia, who should be charged with manslaughter for causing the death of Officer Edwards. If not for him, Edwards would be spending Father’s Day with his wife and two young children; and Dunton would be doing the same with a clear conscience.
It is erroneous, and naive, to presume that race is the ugly centerpiece of every black−white incident, even if statistics indicate that more black cops are shot by white cops in friendly−fire instances. That testament to guilt−by−association can only be eradicated by the exodus of crime.
It should be the aspiration for every local leader and elected official to promote good citizenship campaigns in their communities in order to thwart social predators, such as Miguel Goitia, whose selfish action killed one conscientious cop, ruined the life of another, and left two families, a police agency and an entire city bereft – for no reason at all.
©2009 Community Newspaper Group
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