The Arizona Highway Patrol Association (AHPA), who represent Department of Public Safety (DPS) officers and civilians that assisted in the 2011 Wallow Fire, and are outraged at comments made by GOP District One candidate Gary Kiehne in a recent interview. According to Rebekah L. Sanders of the Arizona Republic, an interview was conducted on Thursday May 15th, 2014, on National Peace Officers Memorial Day, comparing Arizona police officers to Nazis who would “shoot you and me.” The association feels the comment was hateful and demand an apology. “The day we celebrated the lives of officers that were killed in the line of duty was the same day this candidate decided to attack our profession,” states Sgt. Jimmy Chavez, President of the AHPA. “Not only was it a hateful comment, it was an attack on all those who paid the ultimate sacrifice to keep our communities safe.”
AHPA endorsed Speaker Andy Tobin for their GOP District #1 Congressional candidate in January of 2014.
Founded in 1958, the AHPA’s mission is to promote the positive role of Law Enforcement Professionals, and to protect and secure rights and benefits for their members through effective representation with local, state and national governments. More information about AHPA can be found at their website (www.ahpa.com), Twitter (www.twitter.com/AZHighwayPatrol) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/azhighwaypatrol).
To read the responses from AHPA and from our state affiliate, Arizona Police Association (APA), view the links below:
Law Enforcement Officers Offended – APA Executive Director asked for Apology
The Arizona Police Association’s membership represents 14,000 men and women who work in the profession of law enforcement in the State of Arizona. On behalf of those who go out each day to serve, protect, and sometimes give their lives in the service of the citizens of Arizona, we are deeply offended by the comments made recently by GOP District #1 Congressional candidate Gary Kiehne. In an Arizona Republic article citing comments attributed to Mr. Kiehne, it is remarkable that Mr. Kiehne apparently feels comfortable lumping 99% of mass shooters as Democrats and comparing Vietnamese refugees to illegal immigrants. If that were not offensive enough he goes on to “reference” police officers as Nazi agents willing to “shoot you and me.” This is outrageous and beneath the conduct of someone aspiring to represent Arizona and its diverse population at the nation’s Capital. I expect Mr. Kiehne to apologize specifically to all that he has offended and have the dignity to withdraw from his candidacy.