Unpunished attack on St. Louis police raises alarm and questions: Will there be charges?

St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner appeared strangely hesitant this week to charge a man who allegedly pointed a gun at officers in their police car early Saturday.

Media reports say Gardner’s office declined the Metropolitan Police Department’s request to file charges of first-degree robbery, armed criminal action and resisting arrest.

Police say they were responding to a report of shots fired about 3 a.m. Saturday south of downtown when the 27-year-old male suspect first stood in front of their moving patrol car, then pointed a handgun at them through the passenger window. The man left on foot, and was later arrested at a nearby restaurant.

St. Louis television station KSDK reported the suspect “is currently facing charges for several incidents over the past few years in St. Louis and Jefferson County, including domestic assault, violating an order of protection and first-degree property damage.”

The station said a spokesperson for Gardner claimed the case “is under investigation,” but wouldn’t explain why charges hadn’t already been filed.

With sworn police officers as the victims, it’s not as if witnesses are either unreliable or nowhere to be found. So why the delay in charges?

“It should be explained,” Sgt. Betsy Smith, spokesperson for the National Police Association, told The Heartlander – though adding of Gardner, “I’m not surprised. This is another Soros-installed prosecutor, in fact one of the earlier ones. She’s proven time and again that she has an agenda – and it’s not to fight violent crime in the St. Louis area.”

The Heartlander reached out to Gardner’s office for comment and hasn’t heard back.

Even if public pressure results in charges, Smith asks, should a public outcry have been necessary? And will the hesitancy be explained?

In an atmosphere in which a record number of officers were feloniously killed last year, and violent ambushes on police are up 125%, Smith says it sends the wrong message to even hesitate to bring charges against those who attack law enforcement.

“Is this a statement by the prosecutor’s office, in delaying this investigation, in delaying charges, that it’s OK to violently attack law enforcement? Because that’s exactly what’s happened.”

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