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Born-Again Defense Evangelist, Police Chief Jerry Dyer

Almost two weeks ago, I noted that former-accused-statutory-rapist-turned-police-chief Jerry Dyer had seen the light: after some of the officers on his crack team of — wait, that won’t work… — after one-third of his specialized drug enforcement team came under suspicion and two officers were arrested for running a car theft ring, Dyer reminded everyone:

It’s important for me and for all of us to not rush to judgment on this case. There is no indication that any other detective in that unit was involved.

And he’s right. His other officers were busy elsewhere.

Today, a Fresno Bee headline reads: “Video shows officer hitting man.” The video shows two police officers holding down a homeless man and beating him in the face.

As Dyer notes,

On the surface, the video is disturbing — one that’s going to have a lot of people concerned. (Jim Guy, “Video shows officer hitting man” (February 11, 2009) Fresno Bee, p. B1, cols. 2-3 (emphasis added).)

However, the Bee story goes on to say,

The chief said that it is too early to say whether it was appropriate for the officer to punch Beaty in the head. (Jim Guy, “Video shows officer hitting man” (February 11, 2009) Fresno Bee, p. B1, col. 3.)

KSee24 News say Dyer told them we need to wait for the detailed police reports, which will tell us what happened leading up to one officer punching Beaty repeatedly in the face while another officer holds him down.

Dyer has apparently seen the light. He’s a reformed man. It’s certainly a change from past cases — including some I have been or am involved in, so I’m not naming names — where Dyer has gone on television stating what he believed these individuals had done as if his beliefs were fact.

One can only hope that Fresno’s “new” police chief can hold on to his nascent faith and that, in fact, he may become something of an evangelist, preaching his new religion amongst the ranks of his own officers.

Because it actually would be nice, for a change, to see more cases tried in court — and less in the press.

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