DETROIT – Kevin Dietz and the Local 4 Defenders are giving you a look inside the lives of police officers. You can read the True Blue stories through the links below.
There are nearly 20,000 law enforcement officers in Michigan, the vast majority of whom are honest, hardworking police officers who protect their community and answer calls for help.
But many local police say they feel disrespected and unappreciated in today's world as a result of dozens of videos popping up across the country questioning the integrity of law enforcement officers.
A local bishop put officers and angry residents in the same room to talk through their differences.
Stories about young black men getting pulled over, arrested and shot have become more common. Meanwhile, police explained their own training and diversity efforts, while expressing concern for their own safety.
The idea was to put upset citizens in the same room as police officers so both could get to see where the other is coming from, but one police officer with Michigan State Police did not have permission to represent the agency and what she said has more than ruffled feathers.
One of the panelists was Faith Larkin. The Michigan State Police sergeant was telling it like it is, with jaws dropping when she confessed she doesn't follow the MSP rule book when pulling over people.
"When I am coming up to a car, if the first thing I am met with is attitude, then attitude is what you get back," Larkin said. "If you are rude, expect rudeness back."
Kevin Dietz took a look at the everyday dangers that police officers face.
In today's world, with tensions between police and the public, being an officer comes with its own set of dangers.
During a town hall meeting in Troy, residents and law enforcement met to discuss the differences in opinions, the reality of the situation and possible ways to move forward as a community.
Officers at the meeting said they had no idea that residents were incredibly angry about police shootings across the country, adding that they’re now seeking a way to unite residents and law enforcement.
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