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Sheriff Tells Library ‘Please Do Not Feel The Need To Call 911’ After They Promote Black Lives Matter

Minden, NV – The sheriff of Douglas County told the local public library he hoped they didn’t “feel the need to call 911 for help” after the library director posted a proposed diversity statement to social media in support of Black Lives Matter.

The draft diversity statement posted to the Douglas County Public Library’s official Facebook page said in part that the library “denounces all acts of violence, racism, and disregard for human rights. We support #Black Lives Matter. We resolutely assert and believe that all forms of racism, hatred, inequality, and injustice don’t belong in our society,” the Reno Gazette Journal reported.

The proposed diversity statement was supposed to have been discussed at Board of Library Trustees meeting on Tuesday, but that meeting was cancelled due to backlash from the community.

County officials asked Library Director Amy Dodson to remove the statement from the library’s page because it violated the county’s policy on using government websites to promote a political agenda, Douglas County Spokeswoman Melissa Blosser told the Reno Gazette Journal.

But before that happened, Douglas County Sheriff Dan Coverley sent a scathing letter to the library’s board on Monday night and shared it on the sheriff department’s website.

“The tragic and preventable death of George Floyd at the hands of four Minneapolis Police officers shined a national spotlight on bad actors within the law enforcement profession,” Sheriff Coverley wrote. “At the same time, data simply does not support claims that law enforcement is systemically racist or structurally biased. Despite the lack of available evidence to support the anti-police narrative, it proliferates and has spawned radical reactions such as the current calls to ‘defund the police,’ as well as increases in violence against police—ranging from assaults to assassinations.”

The letter went on to quote accurate statistics on police shootings of civilians and data on assaults and murders of police officers.

The sheriff pointed out in the letter that when local leaders don’t support their law enforcement departments, officers get killed.

And then he went on to explain his greatest objection to the proposed diversity statement.

“The Douglas County Sheriffs Office is the only local law-enforcement agency in Douglas County and it is the men and women of DCSO that keep you safe,” Sheriff Coverley wrote. “The Black Lives Matter movement openly calls all law enforcement corrupt and racist on their website. They call for the defunding of police, and we have seen how a lack of active law-enforcement has worked in Seattle, Washington and Portland, Oregon.”

“Numerous Black Lives Matter protests have resulted in violence, property damage and the closing of local businesses, sometimes permanently. To support this movement is to support violence and to openly ask for it to happen in Douglas County,” the sheriff continued.

“Due to your support of Black Lives Matter and the obvious lack of support or trust with the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, please do not feel the need to call 911 for help,” he wrote. “I wish you good luck with disturbances and lewd behavior, since those are just some of the recent calls my office has assisted you with in the past.”

The community reacted with outrage and the library director tried to quickly smooth things over and said the statement wasn’t meant to sound anti-police, the Reno Gazette Journal reported.

“I want the sheriff’s office to know we do love and support our law enforcement here,” Dodson said. “We would never want to support a movement to defund the police, so to speak. I think a lot of this has been a big misunderstanding.”

Sheriff Coverley was elected to office in 2018 after serving 21 years as a member of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, the Reno Gazette Journal reported.

He grew up in Douglas County and rose to rank of captain before he ran for sheriff.

Douglas County put out a press release that said deputies were still responding to 911 calls from library, the Reno Gazette Journal reported.

“Sheriff Coverley would also like to take this opportunity to clarify that the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office will continue to respond to all 911 calls, including those at the library,” Blosser said.

The sheriff released a statement through his department’s public information officer on Tuesday night that said his letter had been “rooted in my belief that these issues need to be openly discussed in a way that values diversity and law enforcement.”

“I am passionate about and proud of the work the Sheriff’s Office does for all members of this community,” he wrote. “This has been a difficult time to be a law enforcement professional and can be disheartening when we perceive that our office may be under attack.”

The library director also issued a statement that said she had had a “very candid conversation” with the sheriff and claimed again “this may have been an unfortunate circumstance of misunderstanding,” the Reno Gazette Journal reported.

“The library respects and supports the work of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office and appreciates everything they do to keep our community safe,” Dodson said.

Written by
Sandy Malone

Managing Editor - Twitter/@SandyMalone_ - Prior to joining The Police Tribune, Sandy wrote the Politics.Net column for the Wall Street Journal and was managing editor of Campaigns & Elections magazine. More recently, she was an internationally-syndicated columnist for Conde Nast (BRIDES), The Huffington Post, and Monsters and Critics. Sandy is married to a retired police captain and former SWAT commander.

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Written by Sandy Malone

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