After publicly condemning the Round Lake Park chief and department — and resisting intimidation and threats that followed — Izzo has become something of a police folk hero across the country, as officers in similar situations and those considering speaking out flooded him with correspondence.
When a cop like Izzo has the courage to speak out — damn the consequences — the brave act can be contagious, encouraging more to do the same.
But Izzo — who once earned an award for disarming a knife wielding, would-be attacker without firing a single shot — didn’t stop with truth-telling about alternative media. He addressed egregious law enforcement mishandling of an incident captured on video that went viral this week.
On Wednesday, a Fort Worth mother called police after her seven-year-old son was allegedly assaulted by a neighbor who claimed the child had littered — but she wound up under arrest, along with two of her daughters, when the cop showed up and blatantly sided with the man who’d supposedly carried out the assault.
Jacqueline Craig summoned the cops after the neighbor allegedly began choking her son for refusing to pick up a piece of trash he’d allegedly tossed on the ground. While, indeed, littering is wrong, assaulting a child is a violent crime.
But that didn’t matter to the responding officer.
In fact, the first words out of the callously indifferent cop’s mouth when he arrived on scene were, “Why don’t you teach your son not to litter?”
“It doesn’t matter if he did or didn’t. It doesn’t give him the right to put his hands on him,” Craig replies.
“Why not?” the officer indignantly asks.
Infuriated at the notion littering is somehow a more abhorrent infraction than an adult choking her son, Craig begins yelling at the cop.
But the officer, who seemingly never had any intention of investigating the actual possible crime that brought him to the scene, then worsens the situation, telling the mother, “if you keep yelling at me you’re going to piss me off and I’m going to take you to jail.”
As one of Craig’s daughters tries to de-escalate the rapidly deteriorating situation, all hell abruptly breaks loose — and the cop apparently takes Craig to the ground, places her in cuffs, and eventually does the same with two of her daughters.
That officer has now been placed on restricted duty while the department performs and investigation — and, as Izzo explains, the cop made one grievous error in handling the call.
“Look, if you’re a cop — and I’ve done it, we’ve all done it — that famous line, ‘Your mouth is about to get you arrested,’” Izzo explains, “you cannot say that, or any variance of [it].
“In the video — I don’t care how edited it was, I don’t care how non-edited it was. I don’t care how loud that woman is. I don’t care if she’s black and the other guy’s white and he’s chokin’ her kid out. I don’t care what it is.