Doug Jones attacks longtime Alabama law enforcement officer as ‘fool’
U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) on Friday lashed out at one of Alabama’s most respected, longtime law enforcement officials.
In a tweet, Jones shared a television ad that Republican U.S. Senatorial nominee Tommy Tuberville’s campaign is running.
That ad features Supernumerary Sheriff Mike Hale, who served as Jefferson County’s sheriff for five terms.
In the spot, Hale begins, “The lawless, violent mob wants to defund our police and erase our proud American history.”
“Liberal Doug Jones is standing with them, not us,” he continues. “Jones spoke at a liberal rally in Alabama that turned into a riot where a monument was destroyed and buildings were damaged. Doug Jones is undermining law enforcement and coddling dangerous criminals and putting Alabama families at risk.”
Hale, a Republican, was defeated in 2018 in the solidly blue Jefferson County; however, the close race (51.4% to Hale’s 48.54%) underscored Hale’s continued bipartisan credentials and popularity in Alabama’s most populated metropolitan area.
He entered into the world of law enforcement as a Homewood Police Department officer in 1973, embarking on a 45-year career protecting and serving Alabamians of all stripes.
Hale went on to receive national, non-partisan recognition for his tenure as sheriff on several occasions.
Among a litany of achievements, he successfully fought to strengthen Alabama law, making it a felony when convicted sex offenders violate the state registry laws. This change made the Yellowhammer State’s law the strongest in the country in relation to convicted sex offenders.
Next, Hale created an Identity Theft Unit and Computer Forensics Unit, both of which were the first of their kind in the region.
In 1999, he also created the sheriff’s office groundbreaking School Resource Division for county schools to fight domestic terrorism. This was pre-Columbine and that division has since been lauded as a national model for law enforcement agencies.
Under Hale’s leadership, the department was also effectively released from a consent decree that dated back to 1982, well before he became sheriff, regarding the hiring and promotion of African-Americans and females. In doing so, a federal judge emphasized that under Hale, the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office’s hiring and promotional practices had been fair and that they did not discriminate against African-Americans or females. The judge complimented Hale on his commitment to diversity and compliance with federal law. These plaudits are reflected in the objective numbers: nearly 30% of the county’s deputy sheriffs were African-American, and nearly 20% of the deputy sheriffs were female, both as of 2018. Additionally, more than one-third of the officers were African-American.
“I’m proud I turned a white-male-dominated sheriff’s office into one that reflects the community we serve,” Hale told Alabama Media Group after his 2018 defeat. “I’m very pleased that I was inclusive. I believe in my heart that prejudice cannot survive and thrive in a department that needs to reflect its community.”
Another shining jewel of Hale’s leadership was the creation of the Metro Area Crime Center (MACC). The MACC has 13 different agencies staffing a work center that allows them to share information about suspects and crime trends on a daily basis. Additionally, the MACC is a law enforcement resource for any agency in the state that needs assistance with difficult investigations. MACC investigators use state-of-the-art technology and software to assist in solving the most complex of cases. The MACC also has a video center that is staffed 24/7/365 to prevent and reduce crime through the use of deployable mobile surveillance platforms (camera trailers). Overall, the MACC is bringing crime fighting into the modern age and revolutionizing how law enforcement agencies fight crime.
However, in his Friday tweet, Jones blasted Hale as a “fool.”
Alabama’s junior senator referred to the ad as “crap” while affirming that he had indeed featured at what he even referred to as a “liberal rally.”
Less than two hours after being posted, Jones’ tweet had boosted the reach of Tuberville’s ad by more than 10,000 views.
This is not the first time rioting has come into play in Alabama’s U.S. Senate race. The NRSC previously released a video ad tying Jones and his fellow Democrats to riots that occurred across the nation over the summer. Jones has not condemned Antifa during his time in the U.S. Senate.
Voters will decide between Jones and Tuberville in November 3’s general election.
Tuberville has the endorsement of the Alabama Fraternal Order of Police in the race.
Sean Ross is the editor of Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn