MANCHESTER, N.H. (CBS) – Four new recruits lifted their hands during their swearing in ceremony inside the Police Athletic building in on Beech Street.
“The tone was somber, my words were somber and that’s unfortunate for them because this is an exciting time for them,” said Manchester Police Chief Nick Willard.
He told WBZ that the police department’s swearing in ceremony is normally joyous, but this year it was more solemn with memories of an ambush on law enforcement officers in Baton Rouge.
It was the second on police in less than two weeks. The first happened in Dallas. “It’s rare that I’m at a loss for words and I’m at a loss for words,” expressed Chief Willard. “I’m concerned about law enforcement officers being targeted. It just feels as though law enforcement is under attack.”
Officer Garrett Bombard is one of the four new recruits. “The vast majority of people, I don’t think are like that but at the same time I do recognize that there is an increase in violence towards law enforcement, especially recently,” said Officer Bombard. He has been a police officer for ten years in Arlington County, Virginia.
Despite the aggression towards police he said his main focus will always be to protect and serve. “That’s what you have to put first, to know that your job has meaning to most people.”
Officer Bombard has a wife and an 18-month-old son. He recently moved his family back to New England to be closer to his hometown of Holden, Massachusetts.
Chief Willard said he is concerned for officers and their families. “I’m sure every police officer in the country, their families are having a conversation with them, you know should you still do this, can you still do this?”
It’s a question Officer Bombard said he has never considered. “I’ve always wanted to do this. I do have family in law enforcement. I knew even before I went into college that I was going into law enforcement.”