Calif. Police Chief Cancels Event to Honor Fallen Officer Because Republicans Were Invited

People hug and pray before the procession carrying the body of Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Ron Helus, who was killed in a mass shooting at the Borderline Bar and Grill, leaves Los Robles Hospital on November 8, 2018 in Thousand Oaks, California. 12 people have died including the sergeant plus …
David McNew/Getty Images

Tim Hagel, the chief of the Thousand Oaks, California, police department, has canceled a charity event meant to honor a fallen police officer merely because Republicans were also invited to participate at the event.

The partisan chief told the organizers of the Blue Bowl charity flag football game that his department would not participate in the event over the GOP invites despite that it was set to help raise money for the family of Sgt. Ron Helus, a county sheriff’s officer who was killed in the line of duty in Thousand Oaks, Fox News reported.

Helus was killed on November 7 when a 28-year-old man attacked the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, killing 13 people and wounding a dozen police officers. The shooter also died that day of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The Helus family has already lost thousands of dollars that had already been donated to the event, because the money has been returned to donors since the chief nixed the event.

Mike Randall, vice president of the Fallen Officers Foundation, told the media that Chief Hagel came straight out and said that his department would not support the event if any Republicans, conservatives, or Trump supporters were invited to take part.

“He basically said over and over in the conversation, ‘This is not Trump country, that slogan ‘Make America Great’ is not favorable, popular, within 1,200 square miles,’ that we don’t want Republicans here. I could not believe it,” Randall said.

The shocked Randall added that Hagel told him, “‘The only thing,’ and I quote, ‘the only thing you [could have done to make] this worse, Mike, was to invite Dick Cheney and Sarah Huckabee Sanders.'”

Chief Hagel demanded that only leftists be invited to attend the event, or he would pull the department’s support. When Randall refused, the chief carried through with his threat.

“He goes, ‘Yeah, this ain’t gonna work for us,’ I said, ‘You’re not gonna support this with the honor guard?’ And he goes, ‘No, we’re not bringing the honor guard. We’re not coming. We’re not going to be there, not supporting it’,” Randall reported.

“Ron Helus was a true hero, and he saved lives that night. Did he run in and go, ‘Are you Republican or Democrat or independent, I need to know before I help you?’ No, they don’t. You’ve messed with the wrong person, you’ve messed with the wrong founder, you’ve messed with the wrong foundation,” Randall said

Randall had invited many well-known people from both the left and the right. But several center-right personalities had been invited. Singer and Trump supporter Joy Villa had been invited, and so had conservative actor Scott Baio, who went to church with officer Helus and his family.

The outrageous actions of Chief Hagel came on the heels of reports that the Los Angeles Police Department is being investigated by the FBI for accepting former gang members as police recruits, while excluding conservatives from becoming police officers.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

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