Spokane, WA - When Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich showed up to a law enforcement benefit charity hockey game, he wasn't expected to be disarmed, but that's exactly what happened on Saturday night.
The Spokesman-Review reports that the Sheriff arrived at Spokane Arena for the Spokane law enforcement vs. Tri-Cities law enforcement hockey game on Saturday night. When he tried to enter, staff told him that he could not bring his weapon inside.
Sheriff Knezovich said that the staff knew who he was and that he was on-duty, but the security wasn't swayed.
“They disarmed me at the door and I’m on duty,” Sheriff Knezovich said. “I had to go put my gun in the car.”
The Sheriff said that he didn't have time to argue with them at the time because he needed to get inside for the event. Sheriff Knezovich isn't staying quiet though, “It was just a new level of insanity,” he said. “On-duty police officers do not get disarmed.”
Kevin Twohig, executive director of the Public Facilities District, said that uniformed officers are allowed in the arena while armed, but officers not in uniform are not. “If they’re not in uniform how would we know they’re on duty?” he said. Sheriff Ozzie Knezovichwas wearing a suit with a badge on the lapel.
This idea of restricting access of armed officers to sports arenas appears to have gone past the point of any sense. Mr. Twohig appears unaware that clothing doesn't make somebody a police officer. And to restrict access to a Sheriff who arrived for an official law enforcement event? the Spokane Arena management appears to lack any sense.
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