Sgt. Mark Dunakin. Officer John Hege. Sgt. Erv Romans. Sgt. Dan Sakai.
One week ago, these four members of the Oakland Police Department were respected, hard-working men who took their job of protecting and serving seriously. Today, all four are dead; the victims of a routine traffic stop gone wrong.
The man accused of killing them: Oakland resident Lovelle Mixon, a 26-year-old parolee who since the accident has been linked to the rape of a young girl last month.
We don’t need to rehash the gory details of what happened early Saturday afternoon. Nor should we try to link this tragedy to other non-related incidents that have involved law enforcement and unnecessary shootings in Oakland in recent months. But we do need to ask that burning question
Most would say it’s “Why? … Why did this happen?” But I disagree.
There is no need to ask, “Why did Mixon kill four police officers in cold blood?” The answer to that is fairly obvious. The young man who had such a violent, criminal past was scared and full of anger.
The question is “How did Mixon get to this point?”
The answer: Mixon was the victim of a failed prison and parole system.
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