KCPD officer's widow speaks about increase of police shootings across the country and KC metro

Posted at 9:30 PM, Nov 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-21 23:38:01-05
December 1983, patrolman Phillip Allen Miller was responding to an alarm call at Westport High School in Kansas City. When he got there Ronnie Trotter stole his gun and shot him with it, killing him. Miller's wife was greeted by two Kansas City Police Officers at her door, asking for her to come with them.
"When I really knew it was really bad was when we got to the hospital and I stepped out of the car and saw the chief," Laura Harmon said. "You don't really get over it. You learn how to adjust with life."
November 20, four officers were shot across the country --- two in Missouri, one in Gladstone.
Around 10:30 p.m., a Gladstone police officer was shot in the hand at 169 and Vivion Road during a shootout. The suspect was killed in the shooting. The officer was taken to the hospital where he had surgery and was released sometime Monday.
The Gladstone Police Department released this statement:
A Gladstone police officer was injured in an officer-involved shooting about 10:23 p.m. last night, November 20th. The suspect was fatally wounded.  The incident took place just inside Kansas City, Missouri and officers of the Kansas City Missouri Police Department are handling the investigation.
The Gladstone police officers were transported to an area hospital by ambulance. One officer was treated and released. The other officer, who had suffered the gunshot wound to his hand, was admitted for surgery, which occurred early in the morning of November 21, 2016. The officer was released from the hospital later in the day.
The injured officer is a 33 year old male who has been with the department approximately 2 ½ years. The other officer is a 34 year old male who has been with the department approximately three years.
The department is cooperating fully with the Kansas City Police Department and is grateful for the support demonstrated by our partners in the law enforcement community.  We also owe a debt of gratitude to the emergency medical personnel who responded to the scene.  We are very appreciative of the numerous expressions of concern from our community.
"They're out there handling things that a lot of people shouldn't have to handle. They see a lot of things that the world doesn't really know that they're seeing," Harmon added.
2016 has been a dangerous year for law enforcement. To date, 58 police officers have been shot and killed in the line of duty. According to the Officer Down Memorial Page, a 71 percent increase from 2015.
Harmon emphasized, "They have a very hard job and I don't think the public gives them enough credit for it."

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