Never let the truth get in the way of a good story. With a few exceptions, that seems to be the maxim governing the initial social media outcry and resulting media coverage of the recent incident involving Galveston mounted police officers and the arrest of a local homeless man.

As we waded through the misinformation being spread, we learned that this same method of arrest has been used on all ethnicities, including two white males who were arrested on a West End beach by a black police officer.

In fact, we learned that this method is the only method taught to mounted police officers nationwide. It provides for the safety of the horse, the officers, the public and the suspects themselves.

We found out that the officers initially called for a patrol car to transport the suspect, but being a busy weekend day on the island, one wasn’t available. With temperatures soaring into the high 90s, the officers decided that, rather than wait with the suspect in the hot sun, it would be better to move to their staging location where there was shade, cold water and air conditioning.

When reports came out that officers forced the man to wear a hood, we then learned that he was homeless and mentally ill, and that it made him feel comfortable to wear a welding mask that he carried with him. As it turned out, one of the officers had a prior rapport with the suspect and allowed him to wear the helmet so that he would feel more at ease.

It later came to light that when located for interview, Donald Neely himself described the officers as very nice and stated that they treated him well.

When faced with these facts, we are told, “but it looked bad.” My response has been to ask, when has being arrested ever been a good look for anyone?

As a result of this controversy, these officers have been subjected to threats from all over world, labeled as racists, white supremacists and slandered by elected officials to include our own mayor who was so appalled and embarrassed that he found himself unable to attend the community meeting hosted by Chief Vernon Hale to discuss the issue.

It’s past time to start letting facts guide our decisions and cease kowtowing to outrage mobs. These police officers deserve an apology from us.

Clinton Stevens is chairman of the Galveston Municipal Police Association’s political action committee.

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(76) comments

Randy Chapman

Personally, I don't care either way about what happened. He wasn't abused. He was simply in custody and walked between 2 horses with a means of control attached to him. He wasn't a slave, wasn't being dragged, and even said the popo were nice to him. There is a faction in our society that makes things into things they are not. Just like a hangman's noose. How, on God's green Earth did that become a racial issue?? It's been used by all societies as a form of execution for eons. Who gave anyone the right to claim it as a racist item. In this case, no ill-will took place and the officers did what they had to do, no matter what the race-baiters would like for you to believe.

David Shea

Correct.

M. FARRIS

Exactly!!!

darrell watkins

you white just think about yourselves because you've never been thru anything so its's all okay...but its not fools

Carlos Ponce

"you white" - That sounds racist, darrell. I'm only part "white". Mostly Native American from South of the Rio Grande but I never look at things from a racial point of view. Apparently some people do.

Sylvia Salinas

I totally agree

Emile Pope

So rather than have him stand in the hot sun they had him march in the hot sun, handcuffed and tied to a strap under threat of being dragged if he refused? I think that the only person deserving of an apology was Mr. Neely, which he got.

Carlos Ponce

And the alternative, Emile was to have him march handcuffed in front of the mounted police. If he broke free and ran, the police would pursue with a chance of him being trampled. That's no good.

And what if they just sat there and waited until transport could be arranged? How long until you would say having him stand there waiting while handcuffed is too long? A minute, Five minutes, fifteen minutes, half an hour, an hour? Emile would still complain no matter how long it took. Was Emile just as upset when he learned white men were treated exactly the same way? I doubt it.

M. FARRIS

You’re correct, Carlos.

Emile Pope

If it was okay for him to walk then they could walk too...

Carlos Ponce

What difference would it make, Emile. You'd still be complaining.

Leonce Thierry

So who should offer this apology to these officers? Chief Hale? Mayor Yarbrough? These officers have not been suspended. They haven’t been reassigned to desk duty. They work their full job description. I’m curious if anyone can post a website link showing this arrest procedure of a rope tethered to handcuffs as a best practice. What agency, specifically, trained these officers to use this specific tethered rope technique? What other mounted patrol in Southeast Texas uses this technique and has this technique written down as policy? Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo publicly rebuked this tethered rope technique as a practice for mounted police in Houston. Most articles I’ve read suggest that mounted patrol officers are supported by foot patrol officers when horses are used as crowd patrol. I’ve yet to find one law enforcement resource that clearly outlines handcuffs tethered by rope to a horse as an acceptable technique for the arrest of a single individual in a regular patrol setting. I can’t find one law enforcement community website with a written policy describing this technique as policy. Nor have I found one peer-reviewed article suggesting this roped technique is a “best practice.”

Clinton Stevens

I think the Mayor would be a good place to start, yes. As for your question, there is an article in the Houston Chronicle which details where they learned the technique and who taught them.

Leonce Thierry

Thank you, Mr. Stevens. I don’t subscribe to the Houston Chronicle, but to satisfy my own curiosity, I’ll see what I can find.



During the GPD community event, Chief Hale clearly indicated that the Galveston Police Department does not have a written policy on transport of an arrested individual by mounted police patrol. The database searches I’ve performed do not give an inkling of information related to handcuffs tethered to a rope as an trained procedure for mounted officers to transport someone. As a police officer, are you aware of an internet resource that they lay public may access to gain information on the use of this technique by mounted police patrol?

Don Schlessinger

The mayor? He and Chief Hale supported the officers involved. How about an apology from the news media?

Jose' Boix

https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Attorney-Ben-Crump-demands-body-camera-footage-of-14299411.php

M. FARRIS

Thanks Clinton!

Latisha Lee

Now can we discuss: biotechnology, privacy, breech, oppression, consent, ostracism, emotional suffering. Broach subjects not outwardly discussed to the author of this message.

Carlos Ponce

"handcuffs tethered by rope to a horse" No, this was a handcuffs tethered by sash, the other end holding the sash was a police officer, NOT THE HORSE!

Apologies to ALL men and women who wear the badge who protect and serve. There are those who see ANY police activity as wrong. Such negativity should be reserved when an officer actually does something wrong. These officers followed protocol, they followed their training, they obeyed the laws, they did their job. Just because Leonce can't find it on a website doesn't mean it's not an established technique. I believe Chief Hale when he said, "this is a trained technique and best practice in some scenarios". Apparently Leonce doesn't.

Leonce Thierry

I believe Chief Hale and support his leadership.

Carlos Ponce

So Leonce, you believe him when he says, "this is a trained technique and best practice in some scenarios". Good, even if it contradicts your earlier post.

Emile Pope

Apparently the definition of a sash isn't known to you...

Carlos Ponce

Yes, I do Emile. Notice that the anti-police call it a "rope". using that word is inflammatory. Police Chief Vernon Hale called it a "line" clipped onto Donald Neely's handcuffs. Let's stick with that.

Jim Forsythe

Line is a nautical term for a rope. Most people call it a rope and not a line because we always have done so. No matter what you call it, rope or line, it is the same thing. I know some people that call it a line, but not many.

When does a rope become a line?" Rope" refers to the manufactured material. Once rope is purposely sized, cut, spliced, or simply assigned a function, the result is referred to as a "line", especially in nautical usage."

Carlos Ponce

Not the only definition of "line". A clothes line can be a rope. A telephone line isn't. A fishing line isn't. Merriam-Webster gives one definition as a cord.

Emile Pope

Interesting how the safety of the suspect was listed last...

Jim Forsythe

Galveston police Chief Vernon Hale has apologized and said,they "showed poor judgment in this instance and could have waited for a transport unit at the location of arrest." Chief Vernon Hale also said "I never would have dreamed of it in the context of mounted officers."

When asked about this, Chief Vernon Hale also said "I never would have dreamed of it in the context of mounted officers."



"The police chief of a Texas Gulf Coast city has apologized after two officers mounted on horseback led a black man, by a rope through downtown streets. Galveston police Chief Vernon Hale said in a statement Monday that while his officers used a technique that's acceptable in some situations, such as with crowd control, they "showed poor judgment in this instance and could have waited for a transport unit at the location of arrest."

"Hale told The Galveston County Daily News that he regularly talks to his officers about how their actions affect people's perception of the department.

"You have to be aware of the images we portray," he said. "We talk about it when we talk about use of force, when we talk about vehicle pursuits. Quite frankly, I never would have dreamed of it in the context of mounted officers.""

Leonce Thierry

Again, I ask, to the broad readership of the Galveston County Daily News; Are there any Internet resources that describe a rope tethered to the handcuffs of an arrested individual as a best practice for mounted police officers? By definition, it cannot be a best practice unless research was done to investigate this practice. Who conducted this research? Where is it published?

Carlos Ponce

"Galveston County Constable Jimmy Fullen said a deputy in his precinct trained the Galveston Police Department’s mounted officers roughly six weeks ago. Fullen said the technique used by Brosch and Smith was used by mounted units across the country."

https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/2-agencies-investigate-Donald-Neely-arrest-by-14291828.php

Houston PD has enough patrol cars and police officers to transport prisoners arrested by mounted patrols.

Leonce Thierry

This comment raises more questions than it answers. Constable Fullen did not confirm if the Galveston Constable deputy trained the two Galveston Police officers in this handcuff-tether technique. It simply states they were trained. Police Chief Hale has already confirmed they received training. Further, the article in the Houston Chronicle states, quite clearly; "A spokesperson for the Houston Police Department, however, said that in a similar situation, its mounted officers would call for a transport unit or dismount and walk the prisoner to the destination." Regardless of the number of patrol cars available, the tethered handcuff technique is simply not practiced.



My questions remain unanswered. Where is there a written policy that suggests a rope tethered to handcuffs by a mounted police officer qualifies as a "best practice?" Nowhere that I have searched suggests this to be the case.

Carlos Ponce

"Fullen did not confirm if the Galveston Constable deputy trained the two Galveston Police officers in this handcuff-tether technique." He said one of his deputies trained them.

Carlos Ponce

" Where is there a written policy that suggests a rope tethered to handcuffs by a mounted police officer qualifies as a 'best practice?' "

https://mountedpoliceworldwide.com/catalog/new-2nd-edition-a-manual-for-the-mounted-officer.html

Jim Forsythe

I went to your link and this is what I found.*New 2nd edition:**A MANUAL FOR THE MOUNTED OFFICER and no written procedures. Can you give what info this book provides as far as handcuff-tether technique and such.

I found a manual on Scotland's way of doing things. Https://www.scotland.police.uk/assets/pdf/151934/184779/mounted-unit-sop

Carlos Ponce

"Can you give what info this book provides as far as handcuff-tether technique and such." You've already been told by Chief Hale and Constable Fullen.

Jim Forsythe

Carlos, you have no written policy to go by when asked where it is written down, only what someone has said. Why not just say that and not try and say you know where it is written down? Using a link to a book and not a policy, why?

Can you give what info this book provides as far as handcuff-tether technique and such. I guess you have no idea what is in the book, unless you ordered it .

Carlos Ponce

Read the book.

Jim Forsythe

Have you "Read the book."? If so, what did it say about what we have been talking about?

Carlos Ponce

Jim can read the guidelines for arrest by a mounted police officer in the GCDN in statements made by Chief Hale and constable Fullen in the Chronicle.

Jim Forsythe

I'm glad that written standard operating procedure for the mounted unit are being written and will be in place in the near future.

"A formal, written standard operating procedure for the mounted unit was being written when the Neely photos went viral, Barnett(city spokeswoman Marissa Barnett) said. The procedures were being drafted as part of the city’s collective bargaining negotiations with the Galveston Municipal Police Association, Barnett said. The bargaining began in July."

"On Aug. 7, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said officers in his city were required to dismount during an arrest and walk with an arrestee to a transport van."

Carlos Ponce

Jim, would they really have made a difference if the officer was on foot also? The same anti-police pundits would STILL be complaining.

Jim Forsythe

Carlos, we will see what the new policies say,that you said was already in place. More than likely they will require, if at all possible, the use of a van or a car for transporting and not walking someone in the manor they did..

When the guidelines for arrest by a mounted police officer is in place, we will know what the Police Chief thinks is the safest way for a officer to handle this type of transportation of people they have in their care. As far as being on foot with a horse, that most likely will be a thing of the past. The Chief will choose the safest way to do this, and other task.

Carlos Ponce

It will be changed from the policy the officers followed in arresting Donald Neely but only because some found it offensive.

When the Galveston Mounted Police arrested white men in the same exact manner no one was offended. When the Galveston Mounted Police arrested a Black man in a like manner, some were offended.

"I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character." Sorry Dr. King. Your dream will not be fulfilled today.

Jim Forsythe

The issue that we are talking about, was a policy in place as how this event should have been handled. You said a policy was in place and was what they followed. This was not true as they had no written policy in place at the of the time when the Donald Neely event happened.



Why do you keep trying to make this about race? The chief was already working on change as to how the Galveston Mounted Police would handle this type of thing before the event , so it was not about race .



You are the one that said that they were following written policy which they were not. Once the Chief and his group started looking into to this, he started seeing the need for a written policy. He may have been using some form of risk analyses that helped him decided what they had done in the past, was not the way they should treat people. The Chief can not change what happened in the past, but can try and make sure this does not happen again.

They were working on change, before the arresting of Donald Neely Unless someone complained before they started writing the policy, it can not be because some found only Donald Neely event offensive and not any other event offensive.

Carlos Ponce

"This was not true as they had no written policy in place at the of the time when the Donald Neely event happened." Unsubstantiated assumption, Jim.

Jim Forsythe

We are still talking about was "no written policy in place at the of the time when the Donald Neely event happened." and the answer is, no policy was in place. If you have ever used a SOP (standard operating procedure) they spell out how a event is to happen. "A formal, written standard operating procedure for the mounted unit was being written when the Neely photos went viral"



I did not assume, as it was in the GDN today.

Did you even read the GDN today? The following said they were writing the SOP and not that they were rewriting them.

During controversial arrest, city of Galveston were still writing rules for mounted patrol :

By JOHN WAYNE FERGUSON The Daily News

NO WRITTEN PROCEDURE

At the community meeting, Hale also took himself to task, saying he lacked the foresight to put proper controls on his officers for the way they should act while patrolling on horseback.

A formal, written standard operating procedure for the mounted unit was being written when the Neely photos went viral, Barnett said. The procedures were being drafted as part of the city’s collective bargaining negotiations with the Galveston Municipal Police Association, Barnett said. The bargaining began in July.

Carlos Ponce

Jimmy, keep reading:

No FORMAL written procedure. Was the TRAINING by Danny Sendejas reflected in their actions? Why YES it was. It is apparent there was a preliminary DRAFT of the procedure in the works as the arrest was made that also reflected that training. As far as it making the official handbook - not quite there but Danny Sendejas apparently did supply a syllabus outlining his training to police upper echelons before executing the training. THINK. Do you really thin the police in charge just said, "Go ahead and train them. We don't need to know what is entailed in the training. Just do it." That's not the way things work.

Jim Forsythe

The only name I have ever called you is Carlos, please use Jim when addressing me, as it is the name I answer to. I do not call you Charles as I know that you prefer Carlos.

A preliminary draft is a rough draft that most would not train people on. As far as it making the official handbook , being not quite there would make it not be part of most trainers, training. You do not train on maybe!

Chief Hale would not have taken himself to task, saying he lacked the foresight to put proper controls on his officers for the way they should act while patrolling on horseback, if this event had been covered.



We are still talking about was "no written policy in place at the of the time when the Donald Neely event happened."

and the answer is, no policy was in place. If you have ever used a SOP (standard operating procedure) they spell out how a event is to happen. "A formal, written standard operating procedure for the mounted unit was being written when the Neely photos went viral"

Carlos Ponce

What name calling? Jimmy knows the rules because he read them. Jimmy reported that one of his deputies gave instructions to the officers in the proper procedures involving mounted police including transport of a prisoner. Jimmy is a friend of mine, a member of the Hitchcock ISD Education Foundation.

Jim Forsythe

You must be talking about someone else. Because when asked nicely, a adult would honor a request to use the name requested.

If you are talking to me, than it is just juvenile.

Carlos Ponce

In that post I posted "Jimmy". Since you do not go by that name I must have been addressing someone else. DUH!

Jim Forsythe

This is what is being reported in the national news.

"GALVESTON, Texas––Two Galveston mounted police officers clipped a handcuffed homeless and reportedly bipolar black man to a rope, with a noose at the other end of the rope, and walked the man between their horses eight blocks through the city streets on August 3, 2019." If you look at the end of the rope, it does have a noose at one end. No mater why it is at the end of the rope, it does not put Galveston in a good light.

Hale said his department would “review all mounted training and procedures for more appropriate methods,” he said.

Beth Clifton, a former Miami Beach mounted police officer, challenged Hale’s contention that “this is a trained technique and best practice.”“The primary job of a mounted police unit is to improve public relations,” Beth Clifton explained. “A mounted police officer should be a friendly authoritative presence. Dragging a suspect on a rope undoes everything a mounted unit is supposed to stand for.“It is also extremely dangerous,” Beth Clifton pointed out. “Anything could have spooked those horses, and then the man might have been dragged, or kicked in the head, or both. The officers could have fallen. The horses could have been tripped by the rope and been injured.

Carlos Ponce

I recommend not reading such a ridiculous news source that describes what the policewoman held as a "noose". I notice you did not cite the source. A web search shows this appears at:

https://www.animals24-7.org/2019/08/07/galveston-mock-lynching-may-hasten-police-horse-era-to-an-end/

https://www.animals24-7.org

REALLY, Jim!!!!!

" If you look at the end of the rope, it does have a noose at one end." No, it does not. The line is looped . A "noose" is tied and knotted. Whoever wrote this is a complete IDIOT.

The author is Merritt Clifton. Huffington Post describes him as a charlatan.

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/merritt-clifton-pit-bulls_b_5866176

Jim you really need to vet your sources. Even the Leftist Huffington Post doesn't think he is reputable.

Jim you owe the GCDN readers an apology.

Mike Zeller

Look up "Reading Comprehension" Carlos, nowhere does Jim say he believes this. First sentence, "This is what is being reported in the national news." [ohmy]

Carlos Ponce

Mike, nowhere does Jim say he DOES NOT believes this. And by national news one thinks of a well known news source. This is NOT "National News". This is a website with a lot of caveats. Even Leftist Huffington Post doesn't believe the author.

Jim Forsythe

Carlos, go to the link you provided and go to the text: Humiliated the whole city of Galveston” center the picture beside the text and increase the size from 100% to 400%. Look at the lose end of the rope and it sure looks like a noose. This is one of the reasons that people are upset with what happened. If and when the police release the body cams, it may clear it up, if it is a noose or not.

This picture is in a lot of the stories that is making the rounds.

What is false: is it that Beth Clifton is a a former Miami Beach mounted police officer?

Do you think that Beth Clifton did not have the training she said she did?

That Beth Clifton saying the mounts the police officers were on, could be a danger to humans and animals?

Just what was false?

Carlos Ponce

Jim, if that's a "noose" then so's a necktie - NOT!

"Beth Clifton saying the mounts the police officers were on, could be a danger to humans and animals" Worthless diatribe.

Jim Forsythe

When the cam footage comes out maybe that will settled it. Until then not everyone agrees with you.

Carlos ,how many horses have you owned and or cared for. If you have had experience with them you would know the dangers of using and caring for horses. How many people that you know personally have been kill or injured by horses?

2 years ago a veterinary friend was killed when her foot was stuck in the saddle stirrups and she could not get away, and was dragged to death.

Out of every 10 horse accidents, 6 of these involved head injuries to the riders and, as a result, increased risks for riders. Do you know anyone that was kicked by a horse. I do, and the result was a wired jaw, and being lucky they are alive. A horse spooked by a car is also of a real concern for any horse rider.

If someone did a risk analyses between the dangers of waiting for a police car and using the horses the way they did, the result would be the risk was higher using the horses.

Carlos Ponce

"Carlos ,how many horses have you owned and or cared for." FOUR.

Carlos Ponce

Jim, how many accidents nationwide have involved police mounted horses? Now compare that number to the number of accidents involving motorized police vehicles. Bottom line, no one was injured during the arrest of Donald Neely. If you have equinophobia, that's your problem. Don't go to any parades involving police horses. They can sense your FEAR.[scared]

Jim Forsythe

I so not have Equinophobia or hippophobia but have a respect for the dangers of working with horses and other animals.

Bottom line is not that no one was injured during the arrest of Donald Neely as the same could have been said if a car had transported.. We are talking about the risk of police vehicles vs horses. Since you are such a horse man you know what can happen to horses in traffic , around people and walking down the road and with someone in-between them such as they were doing. Horses are not as bad as dairy cows on squeezing people between objects such as barns or another animal, but still will do this if they get a chance.

A lot of the farms in Kansas are replacing horses with 4 wheelers, and have a better bottom line with less risk.

You can try and compare accidents involving motorized police vehicles vs police horse accidents but requires the use of hours in service and not miles covered. How many hour's of service do police cars record each year vs recorded hour's of service by horses? The number of U.S. police agencies is about 17,985 and each have many vehicles. Now take the number of U.S. police agencies with horses which is about 148. Of these, many have less than six horses. Houston has 5,300 officers and 1,200 civilian support personnel and thirty-eight horses. The actual number of service hours for vehicles in Houston is far greater than the number of hours of service for horses.

In the last 5 years Houston Police Department has had one horse death out of 38 horses. How many officers or passengers have died in vehicle accidents on the job, during the same time period.?

Dec. 8, 2015: Charlotte was a horse with the Houston Police Department for four years before she was tragically hit by a cement truck.

Carlos Ponce

The horses are properly trained and handled. They would not use a skittish horse in mounted patrol or use an untrained officer at the reigns who look out for any contingency. You seem to have an irrational fear of something happening.

Carlos Ponce

How many of the "accidents" you described involved police mounts? Looks like NONE to me.

Jim Forsythe

Dec. 8, 2015: Charlotte was a horse with the Houston Police Department for four years before she was tragically hit by a cement truck.

Carlos Ponce

So the horse was NOT at fault....... Is this the ONLY one you could come up with? No Mounted horse patrol endangering the populace? No out-of-control horse stepping on anyone? Proves my point. Looks like SOMEONE has an irrational fear of mounted police units. "the mounts the police officers were on, could be a danger to humans and animals" - BULLSTUFF!!!!!!

Jim Forsythe

If you would run a risk analyses, you would see how much more danger a horse poses vs a car.

Risk analyses has nothing to with fear, but will show what the risk is for each event. The lady vet that died was a expert house person but her horse was spooked and she was unable to dismount. The same can happen with any horse, including a police horse.

Police horses tend to be between 16-17 hands high making them a large horse. Even with training accidents do happen.

Carlos Ponce

Jim, give it a rest. You cannot come up with a single instance where a mounted unit created a problem.

Stuart Crouch

Some of the obstinance here is just really, really outstanding! Show your true colors; the world is watching, and some of you simply cannot help yourself. Bravo!!! Pitiful one-sided position piece by the super-trooper above. The only ones fooled by his 'we're the real victims here' diatribe are the readers who are already so far removed from reality that their reputations clearly precede them, particularly in these forums. Sometimes it's better to remain silent and be wondered a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt. But please, continue. [pirate]

Emile Pope

Couldn’t have said it better...

Leonce Thierry

Who was the Deputy Galveston County Constable that trained these two police officers in the photo? Did he/she teach these two officers this specific arrest technique? What temperature, dew point, and heat index is considered too dangerous to the horse and would cease mounted patrol operations? What police department in the state of Texas has a written policy detailing this specific mounted patrol arrest technique readily available on their website? Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo has directly, and publicly contradicted this arrest technique with mounted patrol. Other former law enforcement officials have questioned the public safety related to this technique. I’m struggling with the notion that this specific arrest technique should be considered a “best practice.” I’ve sought online references and citations that this specific technique is a best practice. I have yet to find a source. I’ll keep searching.

Leonce Thierry

1. Do the Galveston County Constables have a written manual, of any kind, on how to train other law enforcement agencies as official mounted patrols?

2. Is there an accredited certificate of completion issued to law enforcement officials by the Galveston County Constables once this mounted horse training has been successfully performed?

3. Does the Galveston County Constables offer annual continuing education for mounted horse patrols across the near region of Southeast Texas?

4. Who accredits the Galveston County Constables as trainers of other law enforcement agencies?

5. Where does this training take place?

6. Asides from the Galveston Police Department, does the Galveston County Constables train other law enforcement agencies on horses and mounted patrol?

7. What is the Galveston County Constables stance on equestrian patrols in an urban setting when the heat index is above 108 degrees? What does their policy state?

8. Does the Galveston County Constables have a clearly written procedure on how a mounted patrol arrests a singular individual in a non-crowd-control setting?

9. Who is the deputy constable that runs the Galveston County Constables Mounted Horse training program? What are his/her credentials?

10. Are there other accredited training agencies that train law enforcement officials on the use of horses and mounted patrol within a 100-mile radius of downtown Galveston?

11. Where can I locate any literature on mounted patrol law enforcement training from the Galveston Constables website?

Jack Reeves

I am a minority, a former Texas Peace Officer, a graduate of the FBI Academy and a former educator at the secondary and post-secondary level, in Texas.

I feel fairly qualified to make an assessment and it is this; none of us were there.

I was never a Galveston Police Officer but, I can assure you that over the years, I have found that by and large, the Galveston Officers with whom I have worked, are keenly aware of the level of visibility under which they function. I have also worked around mounted units and the slanted input from the former/current Miami officer is shameful. Her assessment of the procedure being used is completely biased unless she has read the GPD or Constable's SOP for these types of operations.

All of our input regarding these officers OR the defendant is moot; that is, unless our input is to incite or instill ill will toward any or all of the parties involved.The difference between us and the people involved in this situation is that THEY are not allowed to observe our behavior being broadcast on every social media and printed platform in the country.I guess we should all calm down and let the process play out. That's what Chief Hale and Mr. Maxwell were hired for. Thanks for letting me join this conversation.

Wayne Holt

I agree with those who say let the entire investigation run its course and see what the conclusions are. In the meantime, what I see is character assassination of two officers who apparently were following best practices as trained for within the department they serve in, practices used on non-minorities and nothing released so far that indicates they personally showed any racial animus whatsoever in this incident.

In fact, the officers let the defendant wear his welders mask as a calmative, probably something that, if sanity prevailed, would be the only GPD policy transgression shown so far. And I know that much is true because Mr. Neely wore a surgical mask for months prior to this incident; I saw him many times with it on.

While we don't have all the facts yet, what we do know so far is that two officers have faced an onslaught of criticism based on nothing. Nada. Zero. Just an emotional triggering based on a cropped picture and spun as Old Dixie returns to Galveston.

I am 100% in favor of criticism of police tactics and their reformation when evidence shows there is a wrong that needs to be righted. Salem-style hysteria like this is the best evidence that what is going on here has little to do with civil rights or even optics.

M. FARRIS

Best response yet, Wayne. Thank you!

Emile Pope

Interesting how you say that the investigation should be allowed to be completed and immediately say that the cops were completely justified, blameless, and unfairly treated. Spare us your “unbiased” opinion...

Carlos Ponce

"At the request of the Galveston Police Department, the Texas Rangers conducted an inquiry into this matter, which has since been completed," Texas Department of Public Safety spokesperson Lieutenant Craig Cummings wrote in a statement on Friday. "The Rangers subsequently conferred with the Galveston County District Attorney's Office, which determined that there was nothing that warranted a criminal investigation."

The Galveston County Sheriff's Office is conducting their own separate investigation and likely will arrive at the same conclusion.

Wayne Holt

Read for comprehension. I said nothing has been publicly offered that indicates racial animus, either in the arrest or handling, that provides evidence of racial or racist intent. Read the first line again, S L O W L Y. That means an investigation's conclusion is the only determinative of guilt or innocence.

If you know one, single fact about this incident that an unbiased person would consider indicative of racist intent, say it now. If not, what you have done in your ongoing comments is pure character assassination that skirts a public libel of two people who happen to be police officers.

I don't know what your problem is with the police but apparently it runs very deep if you are driven to such an indefensible and irrational position.

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