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Senator Cantwell Delivers Floor Speech on Lakewood Police Shootings

 

December 3, 2009



SEATTLE, WA – Today, U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) joined with Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) on the Senate floor expressing sorrow over the tragic shootings in Lakewood.

Below is the speech, as prepared for delivery:

“Mr. President, I rise today to join my colleague Senator Murray in expressing my sorrow over a tragedy that has struck Washington state and the law enforcement community.

I want to extend my prayers and condolences to the families, loved ones, and fellow officers of the four police officers who lost their lives in the line of duty Sunday morning in Lakewood, Washington.

Washington law enforcement has lost four of its best:

· Sergeant Mark Renninger

· Officer Ronald Owens

· Officer Tina Griswold,

· and Officer Greg Richards.

Collectively, these veteran officers served 47 years in the line of duty. Lakewood Police Chief Bret Farrar describes them as “outstanding individuals” who brought a range of talents to the five-year-old department. These heroes, who put their lives at risk for our safety every day, will be deeply missed and never forgotten.

The men and women in blue who keep our communities safe make tremendous sacrifices daily, and so do their families.

The senseless tragedy that claimed their lives of these four officers Sunday – the deadliest police shooting in Washington state history – reminds us of the risk that police officers take every time they put on a badge.

Mr. President, the risk that police take every day was driven home today when a Seattle police officer on routine patrol confronted, shot and killed the person believed responsible for this crime. At a time when we are still in shock over the loss of fellow officers, police remained vigilant. They don’t stop doing their job even when tragedy strikes.

In a matter of days, police and public safety officers from around the country will converge on this Puget Sound community. They will form the long, blue line in a show of respect for the fallen, Mark Renninger, Ronald Owens, Tina Griswold, and Greg Richards.

This moving ritual, which happens all too often in our country, speaks eloquently of the solidarity all of us feel with those who risk their lives to keep us safe.

Our hearts go out to the families of the fallen and the entire Lakewood community.”

 

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