EDITOR: District Attorney Jill Ravitch's protestations about the time her office needs to "carefully review" and "thoroughly investigate" the Andy Lopez shooting would sound less hollow if, no matter the time taken, she or her predecessors had ever found a police officer in this county guilty of wrongdoing.
I support effective changes in policing. We need officers who use the least amount of force necessary in any given situation, who use smart communication to defuse rather than escalate and who think clearly before they profile or pull the trigger. But comprehensive reform is impossible unless we have a district attorney willing to hold police accountable.
In the words of Salt Lake City's district attorney, Sim Gill, "To say every officer-involved shooting is justified is to dismiss the possibility of human error. Checks and balances are integral to a civil society. When people take umbrage with that, they're suggesting that some people . . . are above the law."
For too long, law enforcement in this community has acted with impunity. In addition to an independent review board, we need new leadership at the sheriff's and district attorney's offices. This is an election year.