HISTORY AND COPS
Cop stories are some of the most written about and filmed topics in the shelves of bookstores, the television programming guide and at the movies. They are either glamorized and worshipped as heroes or demonized and castigated as part of what's wrong with our society. Neither the defenders nor the detractors look for middle ground. But looking back at history can tell a very different story. Once the emotion of the time and the news media attention has subsided, which sometimes takes many years, a different story emerges than that reported and discussed at the time of the events.
Our book, Dishonored and Forgotten, is an attempt to take a fresh look at an old news story that had political and law enforcement leaders in Houston, Texas engaging in a fierce battle with the federal government and some of its own officers. A police chief, who media and courtroom testimony accounts labeled as an abuser of illegally obtained codeine, lost his job after his department was embroiled in a narcotics scandal that left one detective shot dead and others with permanent blemishes on their reputations. But years later the City of Houston named its new police academy building in his honor. Some never accepted that there were criminal acts by high ranking Houston cops. A single detective was sent to prison, causing some observers to believe he was the sacrificial lamb.
More than sixty years later, Dishonored and Forgotten is an attempt to tell the story of Houston's first major police narcotics scandal with a dispassionate voice, reconstructing from actual documents and newspaper accounts of the time a story of what might have really happened. Certain people who were considered traitors then are cast in a more positive light; some of those who defended the actions by officers involved in the scandal get a second look without the pressure of having to defend what they may have been involved in themselves.
As we are overwhelmed today with news accounts of officers being attacked, and others caught on camera mistreating and even killing citizens, a look at history will remind us that in real life heroes are flawed and nearly all villains have some redeeming value. As you read Dishonored and Forgotten, try to remember that more often than not, the true story is usually somewhere between the two extremes promoted by those who have agendas.
Larry and Carolyn are Texas authors who have teamed up as authors for the first time to write Dishonored and Forgotten. Larry’s career in law enforcement began in Houston, Texas, as a police officer. He became active in police labor issues and served on the board of directors of the Houston Police Officers’ Association and the National Association of Police Associations. He retired after 21 years and began working for a state-wide association representing law enforcement officers throughout Texas, eventually becoming the chief of staff.
Carolyn worked for Continental Airlines for 16 years. She was a flight attendant scheduler early in that career and worked in Continental's Public Relations Department before returning to school to attain a BS in Psychology and an MS in School Psychology. Her professional career has spanned positions in education, a non-profit counseling center and shelter for victims of domestic violence, and a private practice that enabled her to fulfill her desire to work with couples and their children.
Dishonored and Forgotten is their first team venture. Larry and Carolyn live on the Texas Gulf Coast where they spend their time writing, enjoying family and attempting to capture all that life has to offer.
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