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by Peter Moskos

July 12, 2008

Amsterdam Police Officer Killed

Police Officer Gabriëlle Cevat was shot and killed on her way to work. Cevat saw a drunk driver, called the police station, and proceeded to stop the driver. She was wearing street clothes and displaying her police identification.

Her killer, a 49-year-old Aruban-born resident of Amsterdam with a criminal record, was arrested in the apartment of his ex-girlfriend, who wasn't home. Three teenagers who were home fled out a window of the apartment.

Cevat is just the 5th Amsterdam police officer to be killed since World War II.


Dave Hummels said...

This really sucks. Condolences to those left behind--RIP. It is amazing that the department has only lost 5 officers since the war. You couldn't say that about any major U.S. P.D.

PCM said...

You know why Dutch police officers rarely get shot? Effective gun control.

The key word there for American gun nuts is "gun-control." The key word for American gun-control advocates is "effective."

But without doubt a society that effectively regulates and limits guns is safer than one that can't or won't.

Dave Hummels said...

Hard to dispute that, Officer Pete. If the hard-liners could grasp the difference between an all out prohibition on a product and effective regulation set up for public safety reasons (also a necessary lesson for drug warriors) we could move this debate past the name-calling, black helicopter invoking stage. Oh, I was wondering, are the police in The Netherlands armed and equipped similar to their counterparts in the U.S., or do they have a U.K. style system (Note: I consider the U.K. sytem to be a serious officer safety problem, even though guns are severly regulated across the pond. Imagine trying to fend off a knife-waving assailant w/ a club!).

PCM said...

Amsterdam police are armed in the American style. But they usually leave their gun in the police station after their shift.

You know, even though I was trained not to, I always felt I could take out a knife with my night stick. One good wack! Perhaps lucky for me, I never tried.

Dave Hummels said...

Yeah, it might work. I just think police will always need access to a piece of equipment that can incapacitate aggressors from a significant distance. Right now, the answer is firearms. Who knows what it might be in the future. I would love it if police-involved shootings could fade into history, but we aren't there yet. I have seen some interesting gadgets that rely on a strobe light and tend to leave attackers disoriented. Who knows if this will ever stop the threat like a firearm. I tend to doubt it, but that's for the R&D folks to work out.