Thursday, September 22, 2016

The Voice of Bayards Police Department

Recently, I had the opportunity to spend the afternoon with Bayard’s Police Force. (I received a verbal invitation sans any warrant or handcuffs.) I had the pleasure to witness their firearms and bean bag training course, and to accompany them to the City Dump for target practice.

Officer Stan Tavenner, the Less-Lethal Impact Munitions Instructor Certified led the session

When one thinks about firearm training, it’s easy to think of a made-for-TV setting with action and tough man-talk. Target practice would be the reincarnation of the ‘Gunfight at OK Corral.”

However, at target practice they shot bean-bags, not live ammunition.

In all phases of the training I witnessed sober-minded responsibility. The training focused on saving lives; the assailants, bystanders, and themselves.

I listened to them discuss different situations they may encounter while on duty. I watched body language and listened to the tone of their voices. Through those showcases, I understood the situations they mentioned were viable and serious. If not handled appropriately, they could result in serious injury or loss of life.

At target practice I witnessed cohesiveness and concentration. Individually, they stood about 20 yards from the target and called out, “This is the Police. Stop, now, or I’ll shoot.” They each pumped three rounds of less-lethal beanbags into a target. Afterwards, together, they looked at the holes the not-as-lethal ammunition put in the target, and discussed shot patterns.

Police Chief Douglass handed me one of the beanbags, “They come out of the shotgun at 184 mph. They’ll stop you.”

Still, some scoff and say, “This is Bayard, Nebraska and violence doesn’t happen here.” 
Unfortunately, though, violence does rear its ugly head in the Bayard’s of the world. When it does, don’t you want well-trained-level-headed Law Enforcement Officers handling the situation?

The attitude of Bayard’s Law Enforcement Officers; that’s the point Bayard’s citizens should glean from this article.

During the training I heard no macho bravado. Our Police Force is a nucleus of mature, experienced, and dedicated individuals. They’re married, they probably kiss their wives when they leave for work, some have children, some are veterans, they have future family plans, and they more-than-likely have retirement accounts.

They want to go home after their shift. As you, they want to live to enjoy the fruits of their retirement accounts.

But they wear badges, carry guns, and drive City vehicles with the word POLICE on the side. This makes them a target; this involves them in any fracas that arises in Bayard, or vicinity.

After spending the afternoon with them, and have them patiently answer my questions, I know they respect those they serve. The safety of Bayard’s residents is their main concern. These five officers take their jobs seriously, and they’re proud of what they do and how they do it.

They understand that oftentimes their reactions are spontaneous; there’s no time to think right, wrong, or indifferent. They’re Bayard’s finest, they sense the immense responsibility behind their badge, and they care more for your safety than their own.

The voice of Bayard’s Police Department is “middle C.” The ‘C’ that stands for care, concern, consideration, companionship, and camaraderie, and they’re in the middle of anything that threatens their ‘Cs.’ 

Support them.


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