WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made the following remarks on the Senate floor today honoring law-enforcement officers in Kentucky and across the country who keep our communities safe:
“This week we commemorate National Police Week and pay tribute to the local, state, and federal law-enforcement officers who keep our country and our communities safe. We’re grateful for their service and their sacrifice. We benefit from their pledge to serve, protect, and defend.
“I had the pleasure recently of meeting with several officers from Richmond, Kentucky, who were in town for the events of Police Week. I also met with the families of Kentucky police officers who laid down their lives in the line of duty.
“Tragically, five officers from the Bluegrass State were lost in 2015.
• On March 5, Lieutenant Clifford Scott Travis of the Bullitt County Detention Center;
• On March 11, Officer Burke Jevon Rhoads of the Nicholasville Police Department;
• On June 23, State Trooper Eric Keith Chrisman;
• On September 13, State Trooper Joseph Cameron Ponder;
• And on November 6, Senior Patrol Officer Daniel Neil Ellis of the Richmond Police Department.
“The names of these five officers, along with the names of hundreds of other brave officers from across the country, have been added to our national monument to law-enforcement officers lost in the line of duty — the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial.
“The names of over 500 Kentuckians appear on the memorial, and more than 20,000 names from across the country appear in all.
“That includes the four Capitol Police officers we’ve lost in the line of duty since 1994. The Capitol Police recently held a ceremony to honor their fallen fellow officers. It reminds us of the continuing sacrifices of the men and women who stand guard here every day at the very heart of our democracy. We are grateful for their service.
“I’m a proud cosponsor of the resolution to recognize National Police Week this year. The resolution recognizes the work of active-duty law-enforcement officers, the 25th anniversary of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, the 15th anniversary of 9/11, and all the officers lost in the line of duty in 2015.
“I’m also a proud cosponsor of the Fallen Heroes Flag Act. This bill would create a program to provide flags that have been flown over the Capitol to the immediate family members of law-enforcement and public-safety officers who are lost in the line of duty. This bill has passed both the House and Senate, and we are awaiting the president’s signature.
“I’m also a cosponsor, with my friend the senior senator from Texas, of the POLICE Act. The POLICE Act would expand COPS grants so that those grants can be used for active shooter training and to help equip law enforcement to respond to events like the San Bernardino shootings.
“Passing the POLICE Act would help give our police officers the training they need to do their jobs more effectively, and I am hopeful that we can quickly move this important legislation.
“I’m proud to represent Kentucky’s police officers here in the Senate.
“Law enforcement is dangerous work. It is also a noble calling. I’m grateful for the service of every police officer in Kentucky and across our nation. I know my colleagues share my deep admiration and respect for peace officers everywhere.”