Police Officers Blame the Military
(ME) – Two Rockland Police Department officers have pled guilty to animal cruelty charges. Officers Michael A. Rolerson and Addison Cox were fired on September 22, 2020 after the discovery of the animal abuse. Cox was the senior officer and had previously been praised for rescuing animals.
Officer Rolerson had a completely different type of personality than Cox. He has a dominant personality. By his bragging it appears that Rolerson took perverse pleasure in beating porcupines to death with his baton. He also tortured them by spraying them with pepper spray both before and after the beating.
Cox quickly began to idolize Rolerson and claimed to want to be like him. To gain his approval, Cox began beating porcupines to death also. Upon discovery of their horrendous acts, both men were fired. Initially Rolerson’s attorney tried to blame the accusations on activists targeting police officers.
“Mike is a decorated veteran, a dedicated police officer and a loving family man. He and his family have been devastated by these accusations. This is not an opportunity for some activist to score cheap points on a police officer,” Rolerson’s attorney, Steve Smith, told CNN.
However, Rolerson was so proud of his cruelty to animals that he even allowed a third officer, Officer Kenneth Smith, to record one of the beatings. Both Rolerson and Cox are combat veterans. They blame that military experience for their actions stating their cruelty to animals was due to PTSD.
Military Trauma is Unlikely
Both officers claimed their actions were due to PTSD, but that seems highly unlikely. Cox showed a completely different type of personality prior to his hero worship of Rolerson. He needs approval and praise and used acceptable methods to achieve those things initially. But Cox is obviously a follower personality. He saw what he considered to be strength, in Rolerson. He then chose to emulate Rolerson’s actions to get the praise he craves. None of this is PTSD.
Rolerson showed an enjoyment of beating the porcupines to death or near death. He enjoyed their suffering and bragged about the amount he had killed. This isn’t trauma. What about a porcupine sets off a traumatic response in him? It’s not like the enemy put bombs inside of porcupines and threw the animals at him. And why just porcupines? Why not other animals? Because porcupines are slow and don’t have good vision. They’re easy to catch. They’re perfect prey for a sadist. PTSD is just an excuse used to justify a sadistic desire to cause pain and death. It’s also an insult to all the military personnel who actually suffer from PTSD.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Treatment Ordered
It worked. Regardless of how much bullshit it was, the charges were lowered to misdemeanors due to supposed PTSD. Officer Cox will only have to serve 10 days of the 90 day sentence he was given. 80 days were suspended. Officer Rolerson will only have to serve 20 days of his 270 day sentence. 250 days were suspended from his sentence. Both officers have to pay fines, do community service, and receive Post Traumatic Stress Disorder treatment.
Police Misconduct Gets a Slap on the Wrist
According to the complaint,
The court complaint states that on or about August 31, Cox and Rolerson, “in a manner manifesting a depraved indifference to animal life or suffering, did intentionally, knowingly or recklessly cause extreme physical pain to an animal; cause the death of an animal; or physically torture an animal.”
The Rockland police chief stated,
“I’m asking you to trust that, if there were an allegation of police misconduct, I would take it very seriously and any investigation would be conducted appropriately, always placing public safety and community trust at the forefront.”
The police chief did what he said he would. He conducted an internal affairs investigation in conjunction with the criminal investigation. He verified the police misconduct and worked to protect the public safety by firing the officers. It’s not his fault that the prosecutor dropped the charges so low. But there may be one bright spot. If I’m reading the automatic disqualifications for police officers correctly, conviction of a Misdemeanor D, which I think this falls under, is an automatic disqualification. If that is correct, these two can no longer be police officers in Maine.