PURVIS, MS (WDAM) - A Pine Belt church leader and a retired law enforcement officer are reacting to the riots in Baltimore and the filing of criminal charges against six police officers in connection with the death of Freddie Gray.
It was a subject of discussion Friday at a law enforcement luncheon at the First Baptist Church of Purvis.
Church senior pastor Rev. Bill Wright and retired Covington County sheriff Dewitt Napier said in spite of negative news about some who wear the badge, the public should appreciate the job done by the vast majority of people in law enforcement.
"I think we're very fortunate to have the law enforcement that we have here in Mississippi, especially South Mississippi and here in Lamar County," said Wright. "We have a great relationship with them, they have a great relationship with the community," he said.
"We have court procedures if someone does something wrong, there's a way to handle that, but without law enforcement, we'd all be in trouble," said Napier. "So, let's respect each other and follow the law," he said.
The luncheon has been a tradition at the church for 10 years.