On my honor,
I will never betray my badge,
my integrity, my character,
or the public trust.
I will always have
the courage to hold myself
and others accountable for our actions. I will always uphold the Constitution
my community and the agency I serve.
-- Law Enforcement Oath of Honor recommended by the International Association of Chiefs of Police as a symbolic statement of commitment to ethical behavior.
Apparently some in the Bibb County Sheriffs Office have forgotten their oaths to serve and protect this community. Earlier this month, four Bibb deputies were charged with corruption, and Tuesday, Deputy Kenneth Lee Brown, 49, was charged with enticing a child (a 14-year-old girl) for indecent purposes, child molestation, aggravated assault, a gun charge and violating his oath.
While these charges are egregious, they are more damning when allegedly committed by a law enforcement officer. It is heart-wrenching for his fellow deputies because they get tarred with the same brushstroke even though they take their oaths seriously and are genuinely committed to protecting this area. Unfortunately, the illegal acts committed by local law enforcement personnel don’t stop at the county line. Confidence in law enforcement erodes far beyond the city or county where the acts occurred. Some citizens have accused law enforcement time and again, and while most instances are probably baseless, with veteran rogue deputies charged with illegal acts, it gives one pause.
As a community, we have to understand that deputies have the same fatal flaw as the rest of us -- they are human. Does that mean we have to look at all law enforcement officers with a jaundiced eye? No. As with any profession, the vast majority of people in law enforcement are fine and upstanding, and it’s good to see Sheriff David Davis quickly rid his force of bad apples.