Relentless Action in Response to School Shootings

Every time there is a tragedy of great magnitude such as that of Newtown, Connecticut, there is a societal uprising demanding to know why it happened and how it could have been prevented. The special interest groups stand on their opposing platforms to make their cases for more guns or less guns while the rest […]

Random Acts of Altruism

*Published in the Sun-Times Beacon News on Sunday, December 16, 2012You have probably seen the photo of the New York City Police Officer who gave a pair of boots to a homeless man who had no shoes. The photo went viral on the internet after a tourist happened to be in proximity and hear the […]

There are no accidents in life, only divine coincidence.

My mom’s home was burglarized a few weeks ago. When I received her frantic phone call, I went into my “cop mode” and asked how the thieves got in, what items were stolen, told her to cancel her credit cards and get her locks changed immediately. During my fact gathering, I learned that it occurred […]

“Mere Mortals” versus Police Officers

My recent column about texting and driving elicited an excited response from one of my readers in a Letter to the Editor that had nothing to do with texting and driving. In his letter, the reader suggested that police officers should lead by example and offered that removing computers from police vehicles would be a […]

Each Life Unravels Differently | Respect

*Appeared in the Sun-Times Beacon News on November 4, 2012.American journalist Hunter Thompson said that we cannot expect people to have respect for law and order until we teach respect to those we have entrusted to enforce those laws. When I read those words I couldn’t help but think of the citizen complaints I’ve taken […]

The Character Trait that Sets People Apart

As a police officer, my job description has changed over the years but the one thing that still fascinates me about policing is human behavior. I was never a psychology major in college but I have come to believe that those entering law enforcement should, at the very least, minor in behavioral science. When I […]

Sometimes We Need to Save People from Themselves

I was recently asked to represent the Aurora Police Department at an event sponsored by AT&T. The corporation has launched a campaign against texting and driving and they invited me and several local legislators to help them send the message. On my way there, I was formulating my thoughts about what I was going to […]

What’s the Worst Thing That Can Happen?

Whenever my kids express anxiety about something they want to pursue in their lives, I try and quell their fears by asking, “What is the worst thing that could happen?” Usually the answer involves a failure such as, “I might not get the part”, or “I might not make the team”. Once they’ve provided what […]

Why Can’t We All Just Get Along

*Published in the Sun-Times Beacon News on August 26th, 2012One lesson I’ve learned in nearly four decades of being alive is that it’s never actually about the neighbor’s dog pooping in your yard. By that, I mean, there is always something deeper and more complex at play than what is visible on the surface. I […]

Tradition Should Never Impede Progress

A friend of mine spent 26 years with a state police agency from which she retired as a captain. During one of our conversations she jokingly described her organization as “85 years of tradition unhampered by progress”. Knowing the sense of pride she has for the agency she spent the majority of her adult life, […]