The police force that protects the city of New Orleans – affectionately known as the NOPD – has come come under a lot of scrutiny lately, and understandably so. A larger than acceptable number of NOPD officers are not up to the task. They simply aren’t good cops.
The percentage of bad cops has been too large for decades now in New Orleans, but the vast majority of NOPD officers are good cops. Some are exceptional. And we need to recognize that more often.
The officers of the NOPD have one of the most dangerous jobs that exist: keeping one of America’s most violent cities safe. It’s a tough job considering the sheer number of ruthless criminals that make our city home.
The average NOPD officer is woefully under paid. The hours are long and the benefits are few, but somehow, someway they continue on in their mission to protect and to serve.
Like 2nd district officer Rodney Thomas, who was struck and killed, while in uniform, by a hit and run driver. He’s survived by his wife and two kids. Thomas was described by Chief Serpas as “exactly the kind of officer we are looking for to turn this police department around.”
The NOPD has lots of problems and a larger than acceptable level of bad cops, but the majority of NOPD officers deserve our respect and admiration. Like officer Rodney Thomas.