Good Question: Why don’t law enforcement officers wear more protective gear?
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Should police be more equipped with protective gear?
This question comes after two Watauga County deputies were killed in the line of duty earlier this month. They were just doing a welfare check in Boone when they were ambushed.
A third deputy was shot, we’re told his helmet stopped the bullet, and he survived.
Jeanette writes: Why don’t all officers wear bulletproof vests and helmets when going to the door of a citizen for welfare checks, warrants, etc.? Even during traffic stops, they could easily be killed! Wouldn’t that prevent officers from being killed? We are seeing too many officers killed. It’s so sad!
WBTV’s Alex Giles as former Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department officer Walter Bowers about the standard procedure on this week’s WBTV Good Question Podcast.
“The community does not want to feel as if they lived in a militarized zone - believe it or not,” Bowers said.” There was a time where most SWAT officers used to wear black right here and even in Charlotte, NC. You see some of the old pictures they used to wear black uniforms, but people in the community said that they look too militant and so now you’ll see that kind of off-green color because the community wanted them to soften the look.
“As a matter of fact, there continues to be talk about demilitarizing. This is not a war zone. That type of conversation.
“And so to make a Long story short, the reason that officers don’t wear that gear and they don’t dress that way, it just goes back to the community standards they want. You certainly want a softer touch, a softer approach to law enforcement.”
You can listen to more of Alex Giles conversation with Bowers on this week’s Good Question Podcast.
Each week Alex Giles speaks with people who send us questions and gets answers from an expert.
You can subscribe to the podcast and listen right now:
WBTV’s Good Question podcast is an extension of what we do here on On Your Side Tonight, every night. We just launched this podcast last week in partnership with Queen City Podcast Network.
Just pull out your phone right now, put it in camera mode, and put the camera on this QR code right here. That will bring your device to Spotify or Apple so you can subscribe.
You can also go to WBTV.com/GoodQuestion to listen each week.
And if you have a Good Question, send it to us. We’ll try to answer it here on the show or on our podcast. Use the hashtag #OYSTonight on Twitter or email GoodQuestion@wbtv.com.
New episodes come down every Wednesday morning.
Copyright 2021 WBTV. All rights reserved.