Home » Opinion » Editorials
'Above reproach': A high standard, often met
"You have to be above reproach."
That is how Kensington Police Chief Mike Sielicki, the incoming president of the New Hampshire Chiefs of Police Association, described the ethics of being a chief of police. "You have to have more integrity in what you do, and that gives credibility to our profession."
In interviews with the New Hampshire Sunday News last week, that theme was repeated by chiefs of police across New Hampshire. Derry Police Chief Edward Garone, the longest-serving police chief in New Hampshire, is one of only three chiefs in the nation to have served their communities for more than 40 years. He told the Sunday News that when he was a new officer he was told, "People will look at you differently. They will hold you to a higher standard, and if you're not willing to accept that, don't get into this profession."
That's something. How many jobs come with that kind of warning - and with people who readily accept that kind of challenge?
"We are entrusted with a tremendous amount of authority given us by those we serve," Garone said. Most New Hampshire police chiefs seem to understand that. One little mistake, and they can erode the community's trust in the whole police department, in all police departments everywhere.
Here in New Hampshire, recent bad news regarding the conduct of some police chiefs and officers has disappointed the public, but probably not as much as it has disappointed their counterparts. New London Police Chief David Seastrand resigned after being accused of offering to drop charges against a pretty college student if she would pose nude for him. Other women reported similar complaints after the story broke. Danville Chief Wade Parsons was charged last week with negligent storage of a firearm after a 15-year-old boy found Parsons' service gun and killed himself with it. A Manchester police officer was fired after allegedly hitting two teenage boys in Bedford while driving home in his undercover patrol car, then fleeing the scene.
After these incidents, it was heartening to hear so many police chiefs explain with genuine concern that they hold themselves to higher standards of conduct because that is what the public expects. There will always be a few bad apples. But in New Hampshire they are not spoiling the bunch, and the public ought to know that, and be thankful for it.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- What rising tide? Kuster vs. Kennedy - 16
- On Obamacare: Shaheen doesn't get it - 34
- No news is bad news: Hassan goes to CDC school - 9
- No right to know: Our silent superintendent - 1
- Boutin for Senate: Constituent service for District 16 - 3
- Sanborn for Senate: The obvious choice in District 9 - 2
- Secret arrests: Names contradict ICE narrative - 4
- Little for Senate: A voice for the Upper Valley - 1
- Edwards for Senate: A driven leader for Dist. 4 - 0
READER COMMENTS: 0
- GT Advanced Technology attorney hoping for Apple agreement today to allow more openness in bankruptcy court - 0
- Nashua caretaker wants evidence suppressed in sexual assault case - 0
- Former coach from Nashua charged in sex assaults claims confession was involuntary - 0
- NH highways have potentialy deadly guardrail end pieces, transportation commissioner says - 0
- Neighbor won't be charged in shooting death of Rumney chiropractor - 9
- Staples says it is probing possible payment card data breach - 0
- Manchester police: Ga. man stole truck in Mass. to visit mom in NH - 0
- South African Olympian Pistorius sentenced to five years in girlfriend's murder - 0
- Expect the unexpected in NHIAA field hockey tourneys - 0
A series of sharp exchanges at 2nd CD debate
Murder-suicide ruled in Fremont deaths
Keene police working to identify rioters, notify other colleges of students' participation
Locked in a dead heat, Shaheen, Brown spar