Letter: Sheriff admits Facebook post was written out of ‘haste and emotion,’ tells others to be mindful of own bias
I would like to address the post I wrote last week on Facebook, which I know has been upsetting to some. In hearing and reading some of the comments and concerns, I realize my comment about the current situation having nothing to do with race was not only inaccurate, but not at all in line with my own beliefs and was written out of haste and emotion.
I want to make it clear that I stand for justice, respect, peace and equality for all. I stand in support of people of all races and ethnicities. I stalwartly stand in support of the law enforcement community and the wellbeing of our community. I completely support, both in my personal and my professional life, all peaceful movements that desire to bring a unified peace for all mankind. In my roles as as the Sheriff of Routt County and the President of the County Sheriffs of Colorado, I teamed up with other law enforcement organizations throughout Colorado in the wake of George Floyd’s tragic death, along with our state legislators, to develop laws requiring the law enforcement profession with accountability and transparency — so that officers are held accountable to intervene when there is abuse of power and not idly sit back and watch.
What drove me to speak out last week were those protests that quickly turned into violence and riots around the country that led to senseless and tragic deaths, and I do not support these activities. The unconscionable murdering of police officers and innocent civilians regardless of race, destroying businesses and homes is unacceptable and should never be tolerated.
Unfortunately, racism is a real part of our history that has had long lasting and negative effects on society. What I want you to know is that I am dedicated to bringing unity to all ethnicities and seeing a time when we all see each other as people without any reference to the color of someone’s skin.
I do encourage peaceful protests and particularly now, at a time when we should be coming together for the common good of all. I also understand that my choice of words intended to address the violence and riots was interpreted differently by some people and had the exact opposite effect. My hope, going forward, is that we can all be mindful of our biased beliefs, stop verbally attacking others because we disagree and work together to solve our problems.
Meanwhile, I will continue working to make Routt County and our citizen’s safety a top priority.
Routt County Sheriff Garrett Wiggins
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