The Columbus liberal media isn’t reporting on it and a gag order has silenced police officers and city employees from talking about it.
But a Columbus Police veteran has a warning. Ohio’s capital city is about to become a very dangerous place.
James Scanlon is one of the few speaking out about a “dismantling” of the Columbus Police Department by Democratic Mayor Andrew Ginther and city council.
Scanlon has 33 years experience on the CPD. He currently trains law enforcement at the North American SWAT Training Association and is an expert witness in police-involved shootings.
The CPD veteran said the public isn’t fully aware of what is occurring with the police department in what Ginther has referred to as “demilitarization” and “reimagining policing.”
“In reality, it is being dismantled, piece by piece,” said Scanlon. “It is a total dismantling of the Police Department, rendering them incapable of doing their job.”
Scanlon recently called out Ginther and city council members at a council meeting on June 29 for waging an “on-going assault” on Columbus police by “demonizing officers and misinforming the public.”
“It is shameful how you and other city officials have demonized these officers and misinformed the public into believing they are a group of ‘rogue, racist cops.’ All of you have relentlessly and falsely accused the Columbus Division of Police, and its officers, of being complicit in a culture of systematic racism. Due to my 42-year involvement with the Columbus Division of Police, I know that you are spreading falsehoods,” Scanlon told them.
Scanlon said Ginther’s premise is flawed.
“His message is that countless black men and women have died at the hands of police. He is propagating fiction. He puts forth that CPD is systemically racist,” said Scanlon.
“Ginther and city council have quietly been switching out items in the police budget to other programs,” said Scanlan. “They are in the process of taking away things like bullet proof vehicles and items that will result in cutting the police off at the knees.
“This has created a dangerous situation and it will get worse,” he said.
“Any officer that speaks out risks losing their job. They cannot speak. And most citizens are afraid to speak because they will be labeled racist or whatever name they want to put on people.
“No one has a voice but this very small side,” said Scanlon. “Their plan has gone virtually unopposed. They were able to do this sitting around a table with no opposition. And it is likely well past the point of stopping it. They will be finished in a couple weeks.”
Scanlon’s advice? Get out of the city while you can.
“The public has no clue what this is going to mean. This is going to change their lives and their kids’ lives forever. Anyone who lives, works or plays in Columbus is affected by this.”
“People in the suburbs feel distant from this issue,” said Scanlon. “Arlington, Westerville, some 20 suburbs around Columbus. This will be felt in the suburbs. It will affect everybody. The suburbs feel well-insulated here. My theory is, how ever goes Columbus so goes the suburbs.
“Your suburbs are going to lose security and value, as well.
“I can only speak to what happens in Columbus, but it seems to be a national effort. The new term is ‘Reimagining Policing.’ That term came to the surface and within 24 hours every mayor and city council was using it. This was well orchestrated.
“Our leaders feel emboldened. Bad guys feel emboldened. It’s shameful. It’s the most unbelievable thing I’ve ever seen.”
Scanlon said CPD officer have taken ongoing abuse from protesters but that the gag order prevents them from going public.
“Police cannot speak out on what they’ve been subjected to during riots. They’re being hit with bricks, bottles, as they’ve been standing on the front lines for weeks. They are helpless to do their job because they have been ordered not to.
“It’s going to be a sorry state of affairs. Who is going to want to work for the Division of Police after this? This has always been very competitive, a very high quality of people that they have there now. They are being run off the police department for fear that they will be indicted on some false pretense to further the agenda.”
Scanlon said that Ginther now makes every decision and generates every piece of information that comes out of the CPD. Police Chief Thomas Quinlan has no say.
“A reporter brought up that he was having trouble getting any information from the Division of Police. Mayor Ginther had no problem saying, ‘I’m in control of what comes out of the CPD.’
“What’s going to happen to the citizens of Columbus? It has joined the ranks of the cities that have fallen.”
Scanlon said it is the most vulnerable that will suffer most. People without the means to leave the city who depend on the police to protect their families from a dangerous criminal element.
“By not addressing specifics, Mayor Ginther and City Council members have purposely misled the public into believing Columbus Police Officers are routinely killing innocent black men. Their false narrative has greatly damaged the public’s opinion of this amazing agency and created the most dangerous situation I have ever witnessed in this city,” stated Scanlon.
Below is Scanlon’s statement to Mayor Andrew Ginther and city council members Shannon G. Hardin, Elizabeth C. Brown, Mitchell J. Brown, Rob Dorans, Shayla D. Favor, Emmanuel V. Remy and Priscilla R. Tyson
“Good Evening Council members. My name is James J. Scanlon. I am a retired Columbus Police officer. Between 1978 and 2011, I primarily worked night shifts, protecting the good citizens who live in our inner-city precincts. I loved being there and they loved having me there. Like thousands of other CPD Officers, I protected them against the criminal gangs, robbers and other predators. Now – criminals and their families didn’t like me being there. But, as cops, we are more concerned about what good and decent people think about us than the thugs that hurt and intimidate those good people.
Mayor Ginther and members of City Council have waged an on-going assault upon the fine men and women of the Columbus Division of Police. It is shameful how you and other city officials have demonized these officers and misinformed the public into believing they are a group of “rogue, racist cops”. All of you have relentlessly and falsely accused the Columbus Division of Police, and its officers, of being complicit in a culture of systematic racism. Due to my 42-year involvement with the Columbus Division of Police, I know that you are spreading falsehoods.
Mayor Ginther has stated that “countless black men and women have died at the hands of police officers”. That statement was both false and dangerously inflammatory. There have not been “countless” police-involved shooting deaths.
Here are some facts:
· There are 600,000 – 800,000 Columbus Police encounters with individuals per year.
· There were 7 black suspects fatally shot by CPD Officers in 2016
· 4 in 2017
· 5 in 2018
· 1 in 2019
In every single case, the suspects were armed and threatening.
Facts matter! Each of these incidents has been thoroughly investigated and presented to the ultimate “citizen review board” – a grand jury.
Mayor Ginther, you will be pleased to learn that, in those four years, if you were not armed and threatening, the odds of a black suspect being fatally shot by a Columbus Police Officer was exactly zero. You have every reason to be proud of the police officers you have been tasked to lead.
But, at last week’s City Council news conference, Council members falsely vilified CPD Officers for racist, systematic abuse and murder of African-American men and women. No facts or statistics were used to support their lame accusations. Instead, Council President pro-tem Brown went so far as to condemn a specific CPD police-involved shooting, citing a “skewed system that resulted in the death of Henry Green”.
Many of you have spread a great deal of misinformation concerning the Henry Green Case, leaving many Columbus citizens to believe that officers gunned down Mr. Green for no reason. In reality, Mr. Green was shot by police officers after he fired 6 rounds of .45 caliber ammunition at the officers from a distance of 14 feet or less. Those rounds came within inches of striking officers, lodging in the car door that one officer was behind and a headrest the other had been in front of seconds earlier. Mr. Green was carrying a stolen Glock .45 caliber handgun loaded with those 6 rounds. I believe these to be relevant facts in the case. It’s too bad the public never heard these facts from their City of Columbus elected officials. By the way, under the new “reforms”, how many rounds need to be fired at an officer before that officer may fire back?!
Facts matter! You should be ashamed of yourselves for misrepresenting the facts, misinforming the public and driving a wedge between the citizens of Columbus and their fine police department.