Washington State's police reform laws are pushing many officers into early retirement around the state and in the Yakima Valley.

OFFICERS SAY THEY SIMPLY CAN'T DO THE JOB THEY USED TO DO

The laws enacted after the last legislative session require police to have probable cause, as opposed to reasonable suspicion before using force. Local authorities say that one new  law, among many others is already changing the way they've responded to calls in the past.
Local police chiefs say "the legislature has sent a clear message when it comes to the use of force;they want law enforcement to NOT RESPOND to every call for service, to slow down, create distance use shielding, communicate and on occasion even leave a scene to avoid the use of force."
Many officers are feeling the pressure and are retiring, some early to escape state scrutiny.

THE YAKIMA SGT. SAYS THE YEARS OF HORROR HAVE CAUGHT UP WITH HIM

Yakima Officer Sgt. Mike Henne penned this letter on his Facebook page.

"Today I reluctantly turned in my notice of retirement, effective August 31st. I know many will say congratulations, and there is a part of me that looks forward to it. There is a large part of me that feels like I am abandoning the people who have stood with me, facing the evil that does exist in the world. Most people will truly never know the horrors that we face seemingly on a daily basis. Governor Inslee and the WA law makers have made our job IMPOSSIBLE. I can no longer risk my life for a Govt that is looking to find reasons to put cops in jail. Governor Inslee recently refused to shake the hand of a YPD Officer when he last visited Yakima, just because he was a Police Officer.
I am going to miss the job and the people, but the years of horror have caught up with me. I told myself it was worth the heartbreak from time-to-time because we were making a difference. With the new “police reform” laws recently passed we will never again be effective.
Most lawmakers, Governors, Judges and attorneys will never know what it is like to have drug dealer living next door, family members who have been a victim of gang violence or having homeless drug addicts sleeping in their yards.
God help this state and this country when the Police Officers of tomorrow are hired because of their willingness NOT to stand up to and fight the evil that really is out there. Right now pacifists are running this country."

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