Mon, Mar

Orlando and the Massacre of Innocents: A Cop’s Reflections


JUST THE FACTS-It was Sunday morning June 12 when I learned from a radio report around 6:30 am that there was a massive shooting in Orlando, Florida. As the information was broadcast, I learned that this was possibly another terrorist attack on Americans at a soft target location. Reminding me of other recent attacks across the globe, I went to church at the 7:00 am service to offer prayers for those shot and killed and recovering from their wounds. 

Since the event was so recent, the priest did not mention the incident during the service. Following mass, I turned to my radio and learned the horrifying details as the news reports were coming in from the scene. The tragedy was now being described as the worst massive shooting in American history! 

During my 33 years of service with the LAPD, I often thought I had seen the worst of hostility and tragedy in America. Multiple shooting victims at various crime scenes, the North Hollywood B of A Bank shootout and thousands of victims killed in gang shootings over the years. 

The Orlando shooting reminded me of so many other terrorist shootings I have read about around the world. Incident after incident with innocent people including women and children killed by terrorist activity. The civil rights movement in America claimed the lives of many innocent men, women and children over the years. Riots across America claimed the lives of other innocent people. Chicago gangs have taken so many lives in turf battles. Being raised a Catholic, I have always respected people as people. It did not make a difference of the persons color, their religion or sexual orientation. It is and has always been about respect for people. All people. 

I will be saying prayers for those that have been killed and those suffering in recovery. The family members of all those impacted also need our support and prayers.

May the 49 that have died Rest in Peace in God’s hands. 

We also need to keep the police officers and sheriff deputies firefighters and paramedics in our prayers. Coming upon a scene with so many dead and injured people will have an impact on the safety personnel for many years to come.

May our elected government representatives work with our public safety personnel and establish safety and security in the lands of The United States of America. 

How many more TERRORISTS are out there looking for the next target? 

The FBI currently has hundreds of people under investigation for possible terrorist activity. We all need to support our law enforcement personnel in their mission of Protecting and Serving all of us in America. Remember that IF YOU SEE SOMETHING SAY SOMETHING. Law enforcement can’t do it without your help and assistance. 

In this particular case, the individual has been identified as Omar Mir Seddique Mateen. He carried out the carnage with a Sig Sauer MCX and a Glock 17.     

Terrorist activity in America and law enforcement’s ability to rescue victims that are being held in so many life-threatening situations.   

Some ignorant American government officials with no military or law enforcement experience have pressed law enforcement agencies to return surplus military equipment that was supplied for the protection of the public. To be politically correct, some agencies were forced to return the military vehicles and other specialized equipment. While public safety personnel may not use the specialized military equipment on a daily basis, when they need it to protect American people and they need it now and not later. Isis is a threat to all Americans and America. We need to push the Federal Government to supply our local public safety personnel with the military equipment they need to protect and serve our communities.               

I thank those of you that have taken the time to email me your thoughts and comments. I try and reply to each of you when time permits. Your comments are welcome at [email protected].


(Dennis P. Zine is a 33-year member of the Los Angeles Police Department and former Vice-Chairman of the Elected Los Angeles City Charter Reform Commission, a 12-year member of the Los Angeles City Council and a current LAPD Reserve Officer who serves as a member of the Fugitive Warrant Detail assigned out of Gang and Narcotics Division. He writes Just the Facts for CityWatch. You can contact him at [email protected].)