“That continues to blow my mind” – A Midstate police chief speaks out about speaking out

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YORK, Pa. (WHTM) — City of York Police Commissioner Michael Muldrow didn’t plan on getting involved in the public discussion about last week’s riot in Washington, D.C. But the discussion quickly involved him anyway.

“If the orders are given, the people will rise up.” That was the quote in The New York Times by a man in Wednesday’s crowd, before the protest turned violent, as an off-duty police officer from York County. Muldrow hadn’t even read the quote himself before his phone started lighting up Sunday morning with text messages and Facebook tags about it.

“I came out of virtual church” with his wife to all the messages, Muldrow said. First order of business: find out if the apparent officer in question worked for the city, which Muldrow soon concluded was not the case — a fact he immediately shared on Facebook. But his comments went beyond that on Facebook — and to abc27 News.

It’s unclear whether the man quoted in the Times article subsequently entered the U.S. Capitol. But for any officer inclined to do so, Muldrow offered this advice: “If you feel so inclined to be that involved and that committed to your beliefs that you’re putting it before your badge, it’s time to put your big-boy pants on and maybe put your badge aside and maybe move onto something else.”

As for the possibility that police officers, whether the man in question or others (such as two in Seattle who are on leave), might have been a part of a mob that led to the deaths of two police officers? “That absolutely surprises me,” Muldrow said. “That continues to blow my mind,” adding it “sickens me and … the people I work with to the core.”

“As a law enforcement officer,” he said, “you’re charged with doing your best to remain as apolitical as possible.”

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