There is discretion, and then there is dereliction of duty. Via Denver’s CBS4:
[On Saturday, February 14,] approximately 100 to 200 people marched down Colfax Avenue from Lincoln Park to the Denver Police Department headquarters located at 1331 Cherokee Street. . . .
Denver police say some protesters poured red paint over the memorial dedicated to fallen police officers. The memorial is located in front of Denver police headquarters and lists the names of police officers who have died in the line of duty.
Here’s the kicker:
[Denver Police Union President Nick] Rogers spoke exclusively to CBS4’s [Lauren] DiSpirito following the incident. He said officers monitoring the protest were told by their superiors to not to interfere and to let the vandalism happen.
One can certainly argue that letting some hotheaded protesters work off their steam is a wiser course than readying the bean bag rounds. But at what point should police step in to stop a crime happening right in front of their eyes?
Moreover, it undoubtedly never occurred to the protesters who desecrated the memorial that the officers whose names are inscribed there gave their lives defending . . . the rights of ordinary Denver citizens to live and protest. And it seems not to have occurred to Denver’s police chief, Robert White, that defending their sacrifice might be the honorable thing to do — even if it ruffles a few feathers.