Officers on Guard After Mingo County Sheriff Murder

By: Mollie Lair Email
By: Mollie Lair Email

"The talk around the station here is how much more violent it's becoming toward police officers. For the last several years officers have actually been targeted. It's not just a death during an arrest or something of that nature," says Parkersburg Police Sergeant Greg Collins.

Four officers in West Virginia have died in the line of duty within the past year.

The untimely death of Mingo County Sheriff Eugene Crum is the latest in a string of violence against public officials.

That's why most officers stay on guard.

"There's very few places in our life that we are relaxed. You have officers in shopping malls and at church, they're off duty and most are carrying weapons. Their thought process is, if something happens right now how can I protect these people?" says Sgt. Collins.

Because that's their duty; to protect and serve. But fulfilling that duty can create conflict.

"We don't make very many fans. When we arrest people we tend to make people angry, we tend to make entire families angry," says Sgt. Collins.

That's just a byproduct of the job. One that follows them even when the badge comes off.

"We always worry about being recognized when it's our own private time. We're never really off duty. You have to be cautious with everything you do. You have to be looking if someones walking toward you or someones around and it becomes a little bit paranoia, but it really has to happen if you're going to make it," says Sgt. Collins.

Officers from the Parkersburg Police Department and Wood County Sheriff's Office will attend the funeral.


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