Black Bunting, grieving officers and an unmanned squad car...All signs of the great sacrifice police officers make every day. It's happened again. Corporal Scott Severns of the South Bend P.D. lost his life in the early morning hours of April 23rd. Corporal Severns lost his life after being shot three times hours earlier, while off duty and according to reports trying to protect a friend.
This is the second time a police officer has been killed while I've been working here in Michiana. Two years ago Mishawaka P.D. lost two officers, at the hands of another gunman. In my 8 years of rolling tape I've only covered one other officer death. A bank robber shot and killed Lois Marrero of Tampa P.D. during a foot chase.
What can I say? My prayers and condolences go out to the family, friends and co-workers of Cpl. Severns.
Even though Scott Severns was off duty when he was shot, it does little to mitigate the pain felt in the community. In fact, Scott being shot while being a "normal" citizen strikes deep. I had the opportunity to ride along with 2 South Bend officers several months ago. Many times my only interaction with these officers is across the fluttering yellow tape that seperates the postage stamp of land that is a crime scene from the rest of the world. They must hold the denizens of mayhem reportage at bay while trying to maintain order in maniacal situations. During these ride alongs, I was reminded how these guys are just like me: they're doing the best they can at their job, with families waiting for them at home, and trying to not get sucked in by the mayhem that seems to come with the job.
Sheldon and Jim were nothing but professional and human that night. From all I've heard, I expect that Scott was just as exceptional, professionally and personally.
Rest In Peace and Godspeed.