I am concerned that had the Nordell family not brought this to the City Council on several occasions, this public acknowledgment and apology would not be forthcoming.
There are a few lessons we can learn from the illegal raid.
First, people make mistakes. Officers are people and are not infallible.
Second, police officers must understand that blindly following their fellow officers into a fight can have deadly consequences. Although it might not always be practical, officers know the circumstances of the fight first. Had officers entered a different wrong house, it is reasonable to conclude officers would have been met by a gun wielding home-owner whose door was being kicked in by a gang of masked thugs all yelling.
The third lesson is that the Nordells have successfully managed to have the Police Department review their actions, recognize the Department’s mistake, and develop a policy for conducting future raids. The Nordell family did not have to sue over the raid though they certainly had the right to. Instead, they sought to make their community safer. In the end, the Nordells may have saved many lives by being vocal and active in the administration of their City’s police services.
Fourth, the Fullerton Police Department has listened to the public and made changes that will protect officers and the public. This shows that the Department is willing to look at new ways of serving the community.
I commend the Nordells for coming forward publicly and holding the Police Department and City Council responsible.