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Verdicts

May 11, 1988

I must reply to the letter (April 19) from George Aliano, president of the L.A. Police Protective League.

As a former police officer, academy instructor and a recipient of the Medal of Valor, I can assure you that Aliano does not speak for all current or former police officers in voicing his displeasure with the Chinatown jewelry store robbery murder trials and verdicts.

Those events are tragic. However, Aliano's vigilante attitude, coupled with his elected position, makes whatever injustice may have occurred pale by comparison.

Aliano and others wrongly believe that only they are the ultimate defenders of the "thin blue line" that separates the good from the bad. He shows his closeted vigilante attitude in stating that "the only justice that was done was that the other two suspects were killed." I doubt that! Our jury system, however imperfect it might be, still beats any alternative plan. Mr. Aliano--are you as vocal over the injustices perpetrated by your constituents?

I remember too well the "street justice" attitude during the Watts riots. I had hoped that the years that have passed had also retired the old guard police attitudes. We must never forget that "we protect and serve" and when we stop believing that statement, we can leave law enforcement as a profession and we become that hated "pig."

MICHAEL FREDRICK

Venice

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