By Chief Michael Grant
Stallion Springs Police Department
Throughout my law enforcement career, I have had countless people from all walks of life thank my partners and I for the job we do, for being cops, and for protecting their families. I have always tried to keep things in perspective and to remember that I am a public servant and that my badge represents the public’s trust in me to do the right thing. Fire fighters are thanked on a regular basis for their heroism, and the risks they take to protect lives and property throughout their careers as well. There are many facets to public service and for the most part, public servants serve with honor and integrity.
But imagine going to work every day or night, in uniform, to a place surrounded by walls and fences, where the great majority of the people you serve and protect are hostile, violent and often deadly. Where, on the beat you walk, to keep people from killing each other and from killing your partners, you’re armed only with pepper spray, a radio, baton, handcuffs, keys, and a whistle, and a vigilant eye in the tower above. This is the beat that a California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation Officer walks; possibly the thinnest of blue line’s anywhere. Our local Tehachapi prison (CCI), houses approximately 4,359 felonious inmates, a population more dense than some townships in the Tehachapi area.