Tulsa sheriff chokes up while defending reserve deputies: First priority ‘is to my God’
Tulsa County Sheriff Stanley Glanz on Monday was emotional and defiant in the face of questions about whether he would resign after one of his reserve deputies, 73-year-old Robert Bates, mistakenly grabbed his gun instead of his Taser and killed 44-year-old Eric Harris.
“We have an incident where a life was taken, and that’s the business we’re in, is life and deaths occur every day in law enforcement,” Glanz told reporters at a press conference. “There’s been a lot of things said about the sheriff’s office that are untrue.”
“We are sorry Eric was taken from you,” the sheriff said, speaking to members of the Harris family. “For this, I’m sorry that all were involved, and my sympathy goes out to that family.”
Glanz, however, denied allegations that some of Bates’ training records had been falsified. And he insisted that he would allow Bates to take part in the Harris arrest again knowing what he knows now.
“He wasn’t involved in the undercover sting, he was there as backup,” Glanz explained. “I have reserve deputies that are on the [special operations team]. I have two that work for [Emergency Medical Services Authority], which is — they run the ambulance here in town.”
The sheriff ended the press conference on a personal note.
“One of the things I tell all my employees,” he said, choking up. “I have priorities in my life. First is to my God. Number two is my family. And third is being sheriff.”
Watch the video below from CNN and KJRH, broadcast April 20, 2015.