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I had the opportunity to read your article “Overkill” (10/23), and, like most misleading police articles, I found it amusing. I also had a chance to discuss it with several other police officers since I’m a sworn member of the Metropolitan Police Department.

The first thing that was evident was that Lt. William Corboy has a personal mission against Officer Payne. Corboy could not handle Payne’s speaking to him as a man, and most officials on the Metropolitan Police Department like to maintain the father-son or mother-daughter type of relationship.

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Well, I’m 29 years old, and I’m not going to allow some official to talk down to me without making my point. I will also tell you I’m familiar with Lt. Corboy, and he has an ego crisis—and if you think I’m fabricating this, ask some of the members of the 2nd District. I also read that Corboy stated that Payne was too militaristic on the streets. Get real! Maybe Corboy spent too much time hidden in the office! There have been numerous recoveries of deadly assault weapons and handguns: AK 47s, Street Sweepers, TEC 9s, MAC 10s, grenades, to just to name a few. In case you don’t know, these particular weapons are used by the military, and for some reason they are on the streets of D.C. I can also give you examples of bodies riddled with bullets from fully automatic weapons that are capable of penetrating the engine block of a vehicle. These are incidents the media will not cover.

Officer Payne’s problem was that he was dedicated to going against a problem that in this day and age most police officers are scared of—crime! Many officers today are more worried about complaints than getting killed. If you actually go out and work for eight hours, I’m sorry but some people are going to feel like they should not have been arrested or should not have received a ticket, so the complaints are going to happen.

I’m not defending officers who are belligerent toward citizens—and if a citizen has been mistreated by an officer, then the officer should be dealt with. But there have been situations where drug dealers have fabricated complaints against officers just to get them off the streets because of the dent the officers made in the drug trade. Now that’s using the system.

It would be nice to be able to walk up to a man or woman who fits the lookout of an individual with a gun and say, “Excuse me, would you kindly take your hands out of your jacket and lie down on the ground…” Well, that’s the Disney World approach, and that will get you killed! What you see on television is not reality! You have seconds to decide whether or not to use deadly force or instead have a sad police funeral where a lot of people who did not even know you will have the opportunity to tell lies about how they knew you and how fine an officer you were.

Well I’m not going to settle for that, and I’m not going to allow what citizens think to determine how I police. Since when does a citizen determine how many shots is considered overkill? Were you there? Have you been shot at before? No! You only know what you read or see in the newspaper! I have spoken with several officers who worked with Officer Payne who stated that he was aggressive and that if you worked with him you knew he was going out to get good cases.

I’m sick of seeing all of the pictures of the victims who die at the police officers’ judgment as if they are just shot down for no reason. You never see the mother holding the extensive arrest and conviction record of weapons offenses.Why is that? Yeah, that’s it: D.C. police kill man for pointing the gun at them….What a shame. Soon citizens will want the criminal to be allowed to fire the first shot before an officer can return fire.

I also read where Officer Nick Lawrence made a statement that he did not trust the officers of the 6th District. How ironic. I wonder why Lawrence did not mention how he was demoted from sergeant to officer because he struck a fireman in a dispute over a basketball game?

The problem is, Officer Payne is a worker, and Lt. Corboy could not handle Payne’s being a man, so now it is a personal matter, with Corboy against Payne. Corboy has gone beyond the call of duty to take Payne down as if he were a wanted criminal.

My final statement is if there were more officers like Officer Payne, the shotgun in the house that caused a child to lose her life while another was playing with it might have been recovered on the street before it made it to the apartment!

Lamond Riggs

via the Internet