October 2, 2005 10:36 p.m.
The primary newspaper for the
Bergen County area is the Bergen Record, or The
In the Friday, September 30,
2005 edition, The Record ran a
scathing editorial blasting New Jersey Officers and
Passaic County Sheriff Jerry Speziale for their part and
response to the incident in Virginia where New Jersey
officers were stopped by Troopers from the Virginia State Police while
returning from post-Hurricane Katrina duty.
Below are the first few
sentences of the
editorial as it was printed in The Record:
Above the Law
WHAT arrogance. What
utter arrogance. A convoy of Passaic County police
officers, returning from a Hurricane Katrina relief
mission in New Orleans earlier this month, was stopped
by police in Virginia for speeding at almost 100 mph
with red lights flashing.
There was no emergency.
The Passaic County cops just wanted to get home fast.
The piece went on to address
Passaic County Sheriff Jerry Speziale:
As if this snubbing of
the traffic laws weren't bad enough, Passaic County
Sheriff Jerry Speziale made things worse. After hearing
of the incident, he picked up the phone and, according
to a tape recording by the Virginia police, berated the
officer who made the stop.
"If you think that's not
a disgrace, you should take that badge off and throw it
in the garbage," Mr. Speziale told the Virginia officer.
"This is unacceptable, and I'll tell you what. I hope to
get the opportunity to show you the very same courtesy
up here in New Jersey."
Aside from the writer's disdain for
there is a bigger issue and
This is what happens when we air our dirty laundry in
The entire issue of
professional courtesy doesn't go over well with the public.
We should not fight about it in the press. It is a
If you think the above
editorial is bad, you should see what is being printed in
the Virginia papers.
The whole situation is
unfortunate and regrettable.
The biggest villain here, however, has to be the Trooper
with the Virginia State Police who pulled the tape of the
conversation between Sheriff Speziale and the VSP, contacted
the media, and turned it over to them so it could be printed
Great job you spineless piece
of garbage. Great job in handing the media more reason
to keep this story going and attack your profession.
From the transcript of that
tape, it is clear that Sheriff Speziale was quite bothered
by this whole episode.
Did he go a bit too far in
everything he said?
It's a matter of personal
opinion, but you
It's about time someone goes
a bit too far defending us instead of not going far enough.
It's about time that someone
goes a bit too far defending us instead of all those who go too
far attacking us.
It was refreshing.
October 2, 2005 10:36 p.m.