Editor's note: The following letter is in response to a letter to the editor in the June 9 edition of the Enquirer.
Police must use their judgement
I would like to point out that "selective enforcement" is in fact another term for officer discretion. We can not take away the human element when it comes to enforcing the law. There is no way that a study, apparently based on personal observation of parking during municipal court can prove, imply, or indicate who is getting tickets and who is not. Only persons who want to contest a ticket or an arrest, or is charged with a traffic offense that mandates a court appearance, goes to court. The others can pay the ticket, in person or by mail, and do not have to go to court and have the types of cars they drive and park in the parking lot subject to a study as to who does, and who does not get tickets by HPD. Not everyone of whom breaks the law regardless of race, creed, color or social standing should get a ticket or be arrested. Life is not by the book, nor is enforcement of the law. Officers have to make sure that a situation comes to a peaceful resolution. Sometimes no arrest or a ticket not written will take care of a problem at hand. Taking away officer discretion takes away the human element, and that is not what proper enforcement of the law is designed for. I am proud to be a brother officer in another city to these Hartselle Police Department officers, and proud they patrol my streets and make Hartselle a safer and attractive place to live. They do this with professional discretion. Someone owes the officers at HPD an apology, and someone needs to find a better more intelligent way to conduct a study.