Tactics to Prevent or Survive Gunfire at a Demonstration

How do you balance protecting the rights of citizens to peacefully assemble while protecting yourselves? I would like to share some tactics I employed as a member/commander of a very active civil unrest team​ ​that can help you ensure the First Amendment rights of protesters while also making sure your officers are safe.

1. PRE-EVENT RECONNAISSANCE

When you know where the demonstration will be held, send a team through the area in advance to check for construction materials, rocks, fireworks, improvised explosive devices, a sniper’s hide, etc. By policing the area in advance you can prevent everything from mischief to mayhem.

2. CONTROL THE HIGH GROUND

If there is high ground in the area, assign at least one team to locate and occupy the most commanding position. It is best to use a sniper/observer team to choose the best spot to deploy and have them provide a low key protective overwatch with their optics. With this effective overwatch in place, you now own the high ground.

3. PLACE UNDERCOVER OFFICERS IN THE CROWD

The advantages of assigning undercover officers to infiltrate the crowd are tremendous. They would primarily be present to gather intelligence and to identify threats, leaders and provocateurs.

4. DEPLOY CAMERA TEAMS TO RECORD AND ANALYZE

Strategically place mobile camera teams to not only record significant persons and activities but also analyze members of the crowd. They will be able to identify and report little trouble so that it can be managed before it becomes big trouble.

5. HAVE SWAT ON STANDBY

A fully operational SWAT contingent should be standing by out of sight, but close, with rapid response capability. Keeping them out of sight not only prevents the “confrontational” accusation, but it gives them a tactical advantage when they have to move.

6. USE TEAM CROWD CONTROL SKILLS FOR THE DEMONSTRATION

These shared skills should be possessed by the teams working events and demonstrations. Officers should have shared skills and tactics. They should have the ability to remain calm and task-oriented in the face of agitation. These shared skills should suffice if the demonstration remains peaceful, or even if the crowd becomes aggressive.

7. CONDUCT SHOTS FIRED DRILL

The reason for having a SWAT contingent, a sniper overwatch and practicing shots fired drills is because shots being fired at demonstrations and large disturbances have happened often in the past and will most certainly happen in the future.

For example, they occurred in Los Angeles in 1965 and 1992. They happened again in Milwaukee and Detroit during the 1967 riots.

St. Petersburg had two large riots in 1996. When the shooting erupted during the second of these riots one officer – who was a Viet Nam combat vet – said it sounded like a hot LZ in Vietnam.

Then there was Dallas.

The drill should be practiced when you are training in your crowd control movements and formations. You practice the movements slowly at first and speed it up a bit with subsequent repetitions. The concept of the drill is simple. Everyone involved in a crowd control assignment must be made aware that whenever shots are fired no one needs to be told to fall out of line. They should transition to their firearm and move to cover. You just do it!

To start the drill, the instructor should shout, “Shots fired from the bell tower,” for example. The movement should be practiced so officers are used to moving efficiently to the nearest cover available without tripping over each other. Their choice of cover should be evaluated. You can even have someone recording from the bell tower so that the trainees can be shown later the point of view the sniper had on them as they moved to and arrived at cover.

Emphasize smooth over fast to build the skill and avoid injury. During these drills emphasize that when moving through a troubled area, or working a demonstration every officer should constantly be scanning and assessing.

8. DOWNED OFFICER RESCUES

Crowd control training should include downed officer rescues. Officers should have the capability of moving to a downed officer, stabilizing them and then using a one person or multiple officer lifts to extract downed officers from a hot zone, while others are providing cover.

Also, emergency transports may be practiced in squads, Bearcats, vans, or whatever conveyance is available. Your everyday first responders will be very hesitant to move into a hot zone.

Now some of you will say, “We don’t have a team.” If that is the case, you don’t need anyone else but yourself to practice the most important of these drills. That would be number seven above – the shots fired drill.

THE DALLAS INCIDENT

In closing, I would like to recognize the indomitable spirit exhibited by the Dallas PD and DART on July 7, 2016. When shots rained down on these officers they instantly directed demonstrators to safety while they put themselves in harm’s way. They formed teams at once and began moving to, treating and transporting fallen officers. This was done while other officers engaged, pursued, contained and then negotiated with the suspect. Finally, they ended the threat presented by the terrorist.

Dallas PD, PoliceOne would like to send to you our highest praise and most sincere prayers. God bless and keep you all.

This article, originally published 07/13/2016, has been updated.

By Lt. Dan Marcou | Police One

About the author
Lt. Dan Marcou is an internationally-recognized police trainer who was a highly-decorated police officer with 33 years of full-time law enforcement experience. Marcou’s awards include Police Officer of the Year, SWAT Officer of the Year, Humanitarian of the Year and Domestic Violence Officer of the Year. Upon retiring, Lt. Marcou began writing. He is a co-author of “Street Survival II, Tactics for Deadly Encounters,” which is now available. His novels, “The Calling, the Making of a Veteran Cop,” “SWAT, Blue Knights in Black Armor,” “Nobody’s Heroes” and Destiny of Heroes,” as well as his latest non-fiction offering, “Law Dogs, Great Cops in American History,” are all available at Amazon. Dan is a member of the PoliceOne Editorial Advisory Board.

Critical Incident Response Planning for Rural Agencies

It is likely that more than one officer will be involved in most critical incidents, which can cripple staffing in a small department. Department heads in small agencies don’t have the luxury of layers of management, critical incident response teams and in-house human resources specialists.

However, there is no location so remote, no town so small, that its officers are exempt from violence.

When chaos erupts, it’s too late to prepare, but answering these four questions can bring a tiny bit of order to a very bad day.

1. CAN YOU COUNT ON HELP FROM NEIGHBORING AGENCIES?

More than one officer will likely be involved in most critical incidents and it doesn’t take many to cripple staffing in a small department.

In 2017, a deputy was killed in a shootout on a country road in North Dakota. Two other deputies fired their weapons and consequently were out of action during the investigation. That’s a staff cut of more than 30% in a matter of minutes under some of the most stressful circumstances imaginable.

Deepen your bench by ensuring there’s a mutual aid MOU in place with state police, nearby police departments and sheriffs. Consider the need to cover patrol until your officers are released to duty, and also to allow attendance for a fallen officer’s memorial services. Will you need aid in the courts, jail or dispatch? Cover that, too.

In states where police powers are complicated by jurisdictional lines, address the legalities in advance in writing. Consult with your city or county attorney and fill any gaps in policy.

Make sure resources are available before there’s an emergency, and avoid frantic phone calls in a crisis.

2. DO YOU KNOW WHAT BENEFITS YOUR COUNTY OR CITY MAKES AVAILABLE FOR YOUR OFFICERS?

If one of your officers gets hurt, a worker’s compensation claim will be filed. What happens after that is often a mystery, but it doesn’t have to be.

Ask the human resources specialist for your locality to meet with you, and go over the specifics of both short-term and long-term disability as it applies to your department. Ask about:

  • What benefits do they provide?
  • How long do they last?
  • What percentage of the injured officer’s compensation is paid, and when does it kick in?
  • What happens when the benefits run out?
  • What happens if the officer gets hurt working a sanctioned and uniformed off-duty gig?

In many states, except for the very largest agencies, an injured officer will lose a significant portion of their compensation when they can’t work.

It’s not right, but it’s also true that if the officer does not recover and return to full duty within a strictly specified time frame, in many cases they will be terminated – not retired, terminated. For most officers, and often their chief or sheriff, that’s a surprise. The myth that some magic system exists to “take care” of officers injured on the job is durable and wide-ranging, but a myth, nonetheless.

If you discover this is the case, ask what can be done to soften the blow.

Your HR department should be able to guide your officers in selecting and purchasing disability insurance to extend their benefits and mitigate the financial wreckage following a line-of-duty injury that results in a lengthy recovery, or disability.

In this difficult hiring environment, it can be valuable to add extra disability insurance as part of your department’s compensation package. It’s a strategic extra at relatively low cost to the hiring agency that does not add to the burden of retirement costs.

Schedule a time for HR to meet with your officers to review their coverage. Officers who get blindsided by shortfalls in benefits when they are injured will feel abandoned and angry, and a small agency already dealing with a staffing shortfall can’t afford another blow to morale.

Give your officers the chance to understand the situation clearly and make decisions ahead of time.

3. WHAT IF THE BOSS IS INVOLVED IN THE CRITICAL INCIDENT

There may not be specialists in small agencies, but there are lots of working chiefs and sheriffs. You need a plan for when the manure hits the fan and you’re covered in the mess.

In an example from 2016, a rural California sheriff was the only backup available when one of his deputies was ambushed and murdered in a county where any other officer can easily be three hours away. The sheriff engaged the gunman, wounding him and stopping his escape, and now he was part of the post-shooting investigation.

If that happens at your agency, who is cross-trained and designated to step into your boots as acting sheriff or chief? Who is trained and empowered to interact with the press? Who is designated to find and notify next of kin for a wounded or killed officer? Do they have the resources and contacts they will need to do that?

4. DO YOU HAVE A PICTURE OF EVERY OFFICER?

Yes, a picture.

While urban agencies have official portraits regularly taken of each officer, most rural agencies don’t. If you’re making a press release about something wonderful your officer did on duty, that picture will come in handy. If you’re making a press release because the unthinkable has happened, that picture will keep you from scraping social media for a selfie so you don’t have to ask a traumatized and grieving family member to find you one.

It doesn’t have to be a formal photograph by a professional. It does have to be recognizable and reasonably flattering (so, maybe not the ID photo taken in a hurry with lousy lighting). It’s far more important that your officers are seen as humans than that all their award ribbons are visible.

Make it easy on yourself by making sure candid pictures are taken regularly, of everyone. If it helps to have a goal, plan a slideshow once a year for an awards dinner or holiday party.

Your department’s Facebook or Instagram feed can store them for you and give you a reason to keep updated pictures on hand.

Normalcy bias allows the cliché that “nothing ever happens in small towns” to persist, but real life proves otherwise over and over again.

Hoping that nothing bad will happen because nothing has so far is not a plan. Plan now to get ahead of the parts you can control so you can reduce your stress when the world spins out of control.

By ​Kathleen Dias | Police One

About the author

Kathleen Dias writes features and news analysis on topics of concern to law enforcement professionals serving in rural and remote locations. She uses her background in writing, teaching and marketing to advocate for professional levels of training and equipment for rural officers, open channels of communication for isolated departments, and dispel myths about rural policing. She’s had a front-row seat observing rural agencies – local, state and federal – from the Sierra foothills to California’s notorious Emerald Triangle, for more than 30 years.

Jackson County Detention Center To Offer Mental Health Services

From Jackson County Sheriff Darryl Forté and Jackson County Jail Administrator Diana Turner:

We are pleased to announce that by unanimous vote the Jackson County Legislature approved a contract yesterday for comprehensive mental health services at the Jackson County Detention Center with Advanced Correctional Healthcare, Inc.

For the first time in the jail’s history, mental health services for the population will be provided to national standards. We regard this as a crucial step in the direction of becoming a premier agency.

“This mental health service contract is a significant step toward our commitment to provide our inmate population a resource for their overall mental health needs,” Sheriff Forté said.

We want to thank the County Executive’s team for their support in this endeavor and the members of the Legislature who continue to make the well-being of our inmates, and the safety and security of our facility, a priority.

Sheriff, Former MSA Site Coordinator Appointed to POST Commission

On June 19 Governor Mike Parson announced six appointments to various boards and commissions. Two – Gary Hill and Sheriff David Marshak  – were appointed to serve on the Peace Officer Standards and Training Program (POST) Commissio​n​.

Hill, of Holts Summit, currently serves as the chief of police and director of public safety at Lincoln University. Previously, he served with the Cole County Sheriff’s Department for 18 years, beginning ​​as a deputy sheriff and advancing to Patrol Division Commander.

Hill has also served as a site coordinator for the Missouri Sheriffs’ Association Training Academy, adjunct instructor at Lincoln University, Joint Terrorism Task Force officer for the F.B.I., and panel member for the Missouri Police Chiefs Association’s Assessment Center. 

He is also a member of the F.B.I. National Academy Associates, Missouri Police Chiefs Association, Missouri Task Force on Children’s Justice, and Jefferson City Crime Stoppers. 

Hill is active in his community, serving as a member of the Jefferson City Lions Club, Capital City Boys and Girls Club, and the Disciples of Christ Youth Outreach Program. He holds a Bachelor of Science in criminal justice from Lincoln University and a Master of Science in criminal justice administration from Columbia College. Hill is also a graduate of the F.B.I. National Academy.

Sheriff Dave Marshak, of Festus, has served as the sheriff of Jefferson County since 2016. Previously, he served 22 years with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, beginning as a deputy sheriff and advancing to captain. In this role, he was responsible for training employees and ensuring their compliance with governing standards.

Sheriff Marshak has trained both civilians and law enforcement officers from local, state, and federal agencies. He has also served as an adjunct instructor at Jefferson College, teaching courses in criminal investigations and corrections. Sheriff Marshak holds a Bachelor of Arts in human resources and a Master of Arts in communications from Lindenwood University.

POST is a regulatory program with responsibility for licensing peace officers, ensuring compliance with peace officer continuing education requirements, and conducting investigations for disciplining the licenses of peace officers as specified by Chapter 590, RSMo.

The POST Program also licenses law enforcement basic training centers, basic training instructors, approves law enforcement training curricula, and provides staff support for the Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Commission.

Court OKs Ruling Denying Defender Caseload Relief

A Missouri appeals court has set a high bar for public defenders to overcome when appealing circuit-court denials of their motions for caseload relief.

In a June 9 ruling, a three-judge panel of the Missouri Court of Appeals Western District adopted an abuse of discretion standard of review for cases stemming from a 2013 law that provides a mechanism for district defenders to ask circuit court presiding judges for caseload relief for individual attorneys.

Mary Fox, director of the Missouri State Public Defender System, said she anticipates the standard of review being a key part of a motion to transfer the case to the Missouri Supreme Court.

“I think if the statute is going to have value to the state, there would be value in getting a decision from the Supreme Court as to how they would like to see it put into practice,” she said in an interview.

Jackson County District Defender Ruth Petsch had sought to overturn Jackson County Circuit Court Presiding Judge David M. Byrn’s order denying caseload relief for two individual attorneys in her office, David Wiegert and Walter Stokely, as well as her office as a whole.

She also argued that the 2013 law is unconstitutional, asserting that a provision that prohibits public defenders from declining to take on new cases because they already have too many to ethically handle is at odds with attorney ethics rules that require attorneys to provide effective assistance of counsel for their clients.

Under the new standard of review, appeals courts would largely defer to presiding judges and place the burden on public defenders to show that the judges abused their discretion in reaching their decisions.

The ruling also closes the door to Petsch and district defenders across the state who seek to raise concerns about the law’s constitutionality using the process set out in the caseload-relief law.

Since 2017, Petsch has sought caseload relief from the Jackson County Circuit Court under Section 600.063 of the Revised Statutes of Missouri. Following an evidentiary hearing in 2019, Byrn denied relief, finding that neither the individual attorneys nor the wider office were too overburdened to accept new cases while providing effective representation to existing clients.

Before addressing Petsch’s arguments, the court panel first had to decide the applicable standard of review — an issue of first impression.

The parties disagreed on what the correct standard should be. Petsch argued the court should review Byrn’s factual findings for competent and substantial evidence and that de novo review was appropriate for the application of law to the facts, or to interpreting the statute.

The Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office, however, contended that appeals courts should affirm presiding judges’ decisions if factual findings are supported by competent and substantial evidence and to defer to the presiding judges’ credibility findings.

The Western District concluded that the case-relief law describes a procedure for the exercise of a court’s inherent authority and responsibility to manage its dockets.

“As such, and consistent with appellate review of other trial court rulings involving the exercise of discretion pursuant to inherent authority, orders issued by a presiding judge following a section 600.063 conference are presumed to be correct, are reviewed for an abuse of discretion, and the burden of showing an abuse of discretion is on the appellant,” Judge Cynthia L. Martin wrote in the opinion.

Petsch argued that Byrn erred in refusing to declare provisions of the caseload-relief law subordinate to the Rules of Professional Conduct and that the law was unconstitutional as applied if it was interpreted to limit the ability of public defenders to decline or delay appointments in order to comply with ethics rules.

The court ruled that in a proceeding under the caseload-relief statute, a district defender cannot ask a presiding judge for a declaratory judgment about the constitutional validity of the statute.

“The District Defender remains free to challenge the constitutionality of sections 600.062 and 600.063 in any other proceeding where those issues can be properly raised,” Martin said. “But the constitutionality of sections 600.062 and 600.063 cannot be raised in a section 600.063 motion, nor determined by a presiding judge following a section 600.063 conference.”

Judges Lisa White Hardwick and Thomas N. Chapman agreed.

Petsch and her attorney, John C. Aisenbrey of Stinson, declined to comment. A spokesman for the prosecutor’s office also declined to comment.

The case is In re: Area 16 Public Defender Office III v. Jackson County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, WD82962.

By Jessica Shumaker | Missouri Lawyers Media molawyersmedia.com

Amazon Pauses Police Use of Its Facial Recognition Software

Nicole Hardy-Smith with the Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office, uses a facial recognition software tool to provide identity resolution on cold cases. Photo by Carline Jean/Sun Sentinel/TNS


Answering widespread demands for new curbs on aggressive policing in the wake of George Floyd’s killing, Amazon is halting law enforcement use of its facial recognition platform for one year, the company said Wednesday.

The company has marketed its software platform, called Rekognition, to law enforcement agencies for years, and its short blog post announcing the shift did not provide an explicit reason for the change of direction. The post did note that Amazon supports federal regulation of facial recognition technology, and that the company hopes the one-year moratorium “might give Congress enough time to implement appropriate rules.”

The move came two days after IBM announced that it was getting out of the facial recognition business entirely, citing ethical concerns over the powerful technology. In a letter to Congress, the company’s chief executive, Arvind Krishna, wrote that “IBM firmly opposes and will not condone uses of any [facial recognition] technology, including facial recognition technology offered by other vendors, for mass surveillance, racial profiling, violations of basic human rights and freedoms,” or any other purpose that goes against the company’s core principles.

Cities around the country, including Berkeley, Oakland and San Francisco, have banned the technology’s use by public agencies outright over fears that the software, which employs machine learning algorithms to automatically detect human faces in digital video and match them to names, presents too great a risk to privacy to be used responsibly.

A 2019 California law banned the use of facial recognition software — and any other biometric surveillance that can identify people by tattoo, gait or other individually distinguishable characteristics — on photos or video collected by law enforcement agencies.

The text of the law summarized the concerns about the use of the technology, calling its potential widespread application the “functional equivalent of requiring every person to show a personal photo identification card at all times in violation of recognized constitutional rights,” regardless of consent. It added that its use runs the risk of creating massive, unregulated databases about Californians never suspected of committing a crime, and “may chill the exercise of free speech in public places” as the identities of anyone in a crowd could be immediately discerned.

Amazon has been one of the leading providers of facial recognition technology to law enforcement agencies in recent years, a role that has drawn criticism. In June 2018, the Washington state branch of the American Civil Liberties Union called on the Seattle company to stop providing the technology to governments, including local law enforcement.

The Amazon executive who oversees Rekognition told reporters at PBS’s “Frontline” in February that the company did not know how many police departments used the technology. “We have 165 services in our technology infrastructure platform,” said Andrew Jassy, c​​hief executive of Amazon Web Services, “and you can use them in any combination you want.”

Fight for the Future, a digital rights group that has been leading a coalition calling for an outright ban on facial recognition technology in all applications, said a one-year pause is not enough.

“This is nothing more than a public relations stunt from Amazon,” Evan Greer, deputy director at Fight for the Future, said in a statement. Greer said the appeal for federal regulation is consistent with a strategy — familiar from the fight over California’s landmark privacy law passed last year — in which powerful tech companies lobby for broad federal regulation that is ultimately weaker than state or municipal-level regulation of their business.
 
By Sam Dean | Los Angeles Times

Missouri Supreme Court Issues Directives for Reopening Courts

The Missouri Supreme Court has issued additional guidance for circuit courts as they navigate resuming jury trials in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The court issued an order supplementing its May 4 order and operational directives for gradually reopening the state’s courthouses to in-person proceedings.

In the new order, the court said that the safety of jurors, visitors, court personnel, parties and attorneys is paramount, and no jurisdiction may resume jury proceedings without first undergoing sufficient planning and preparation.

“The resumption of jury proceedings too early would not only risk the health of participants, but it could also undermine public confidence in the courts and damage the integrity of trial by jury, a cornerstone of our justice system,” the order said.

The Supreme Court pointed to new research indicating that COVID-19 may be spread through the air by normal breathing and conversation in addition to the spread of droplets from sneezes and coughs.

“Therefore, every reasonable precaution should be taken in the context of jury proceedings,” the order said.

Under the new guidelines, in order to resume grand or petit jury proceedings under any operating phase, presiding judges first must determine whether their circuits have the proper facilities and equipment in place to conduct jury proceedings in compliance with social distancing protocols, local restrictions on occupancy rates and other recommended health and safety strategies.

Jury proceedings are not generally anticipated to resume before a court implements Phase Three of the Supreme Court’s operating phases, the order said. The order noted that the earliest a court could enter Phase Three under its requirements is June 13.

The order said courts should take efforts to educate the general public about the importance of jury service and the steps the courts are taking to ensure the safety and well-being of potential jurors as jury trials resume.

The Supreme Court also recommended that courts suspend warrants for jurors who fail to appear when summoned and to suspend the execution of warrants previously issued for that reason until after the pandemic subsides.

Instead, the court recommended that circuits follow up with non-responders with a second notice and second summons. Courts may offer deferral in place of a warrant.

Additionally, the order recommended that courts should be capable of seating jurors 6 feet apart, limiting the number of potential jurors involved in jury selection and ensuring that members of the public may view public court proceedings.

Molawyersmedia.com

Zoom Meeting to Prepare New Drivers for the Road

On July 28, 2020, First Impact will have its first ZOOM presentation!  

First Impact is a 90 – minute evidence-based traffic safety program that educates parents and new and soon-to-be teen drivers about Missouri’s Graduated Driver License law.  Agencies and safety partners who serve parents and their teens are also invited to join the presentation..

The goal of First Impact is to eliminate new driver crashes and reduce resulting injuries and fatalities, by increasing parental awareness and enforcement of Missouri’s Graduated Driver License law.  

Objectives of the program are to increase:

•        Awareness of teen driving risks

•        Understanding of Missouri’s GDL law

•        GDL monitoring and enforcement at home

•        Importance of being a positive role model

The program is delivered by trained facilitators and law enforcement officers who coach parents by presenting key facts and proven strategies to help parents lower their teens’ crash risk by utilizing the Missouri GDL law. The statewide program is available free of charge.  Funding is provided by MoDOT’s Highway Safety & Traffic Division and State Farm ​​Insurance.

Watch a brief video to learn more about First Impact ​by visiting​https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPK1JJlhtwA

You can also visit the First Impact website at firstimpact.missouri.edu  

Pre-register at:  https://www.eventbrite.com/e/first-impact-new-driver-parent-teen-education-program-on-zoom-tickets-106153447820

Sheriff to be Commemorated With Apparel Fundraiser

​’​Hold the Line’ campaign to feature special apparel in honor of Sheriff Andy Clark of DeKalb County.

A sheriff killed in a crash in DeKalb County, Missouri this week will be remembered with a charitable fundraiser for his family.

Shield Republic Charities will run a “Hold the Line” apparel campaign to raise funds for Sheriff Andy Clark of the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office, who died in a car accident while responding to a call the morning of Wednesday, June 3. The fundraiser will include commemorative t-shirts, long-sleeved shirts, hoodies, ladies’ tank tops and decals made in America. All net proceeds from the campaign will be donated to the Clark family.

Sheriff Clark died while on duty after being called to assist a deputy near Highways 36 and MO 33 near Osborn, Missouri. En route to helping his colleague, his car collided with an SUV, fatally wounding the sheriff and injuring four people in the SUV.

The cause of the crash is currently being investigated; witnesses said Sheriff Clark’s vehicle had its hazard lights on as he crashed.

“Today we share in the heartbreak of the Clark family along with the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office team,” said Charlie Romero, spokesperson for Shield Republic. “Our Hold the Line campaign in Sheriff Clark’s honor recognizes the sacrifice of a committed officer who laid down his life in the line of duty. We commend him for his service.”

View the Hold the Line fundraiser page for Sheriff Clark  at https://www.shieldrepublic.com/products/100-donation-hold-the-line-sheriff-andy-clark.

Shield Republic’s Hold the Line fundraisers have donated more than $200,000 this year to the families and units of fallen first responders, police officers and K9 police dogs.

For more information about the Shield Republic Charities, email charities@shieldrepublic.com.

About Shield Republic

Established in 2016, Shield Republic is an American lifestyle brand based outside Raleigh, North Carolina. The company offers creative, fresh apparel and merchandise embody​​ing American pride. Everything sold by Shield Republic is designed and manufactured in the United States. Shield Republic appeals to patriotic Americans p​​assionate about personal strength, second amendment rights and military strength. Through Shield Republic Charities, the company shows appreciation to soldiers, first responders and their families.

Learn more about Shield Republic and shop the online store at https://www.shieldrepublic.com.  Read the Shield Republic lifestyle blog at https://patriot.shieldrepublic.com. Follow Shield Republic on Facebook (@ShieldRepublicCo), Instagram (@shield_republic), Twitter (@shieldrepublic) and Pinterest (@shield_republic).

Guruobserver.com

Flags to Fly Half-Staff in Honor of DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Clark

Today, Governor Mike Parson ordered U.S. and Missouri flags be flown at half-staff at government buildings in DeKalb County on Wednesday, June 10, 2020, in honor of DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Clark.

On June 3, Sheriff Clark was killed in a​​ motor vehicle crash while carrying out his duties and responding to assist a deputy on an emergency call.

“Sheriff Clark devoted more than 23 years of his life as a law enforcement officer committed to protecting his fellow citizens and making his community stronger,” Governor Parson said. “He served Missouri with heart and grit, and his final act of public service was responding to assist one of his deputy sheriffs at an emergency scene. Sheriff Clark’s career is an example of public service of the highest order.”

The flags will be held at half-staff on the day Sheriff Clark is laid to rest. To view the proclamation, click here.