United States Attorney’s Office Recognizes Police Week

3 mins read
FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the United States Department of Justice headquarters in Washington, D.C.

DES MOINES, Iowa – In honor of National Police Week, United States Attorney Richard D.Westphal recognizes the service and sacrifice of federal, state, and local law enforcement. Thisyear, the week is observed Wednesday, May 11 through Tuesday, May 17, 2022.

“This week, we gather to pay tribute to the law enforcement officers who sacrificed their lives in service to our country,” said Attorney General Garland. “We remember the courage with which they worked and lived. We recommit ourselves to the mission to which they dedicated their lives. On behalf of a grateful Justice Department and a grateful nation, I extend my sincerest thanks and gratitude to the entire law enforcement community.”

U.S. Attorney Westphal stated, “This week we pause to recognize the daily commitment of law enforcement officers for their dedication and courage in protecting and serving our communities in Iowa. In particular, we honor the lives of Iowa State Troopers Ted Benda and Sergeant Jim K. Smith, who made the ultimate sacrifice while protecting and serving Iowans. We stand together in remembering the brave men and women who have died in the line of duty and will continue to support all law enforcement in their efforts to keep our communities safe.”

Trooper Ted Benda and Sergeant Jim Smith were honored at the 2022 Iowa Peace Officer Memorial Ceremony in Des Moines. Trooper Benda served the Iowa Department of Public Safety for 15 years and died in the line of duty while assisting a local law enforcement agency with the 1
apprehension of a wanted subject in Clayton County. Trooper Benda is survived by his wife and four children. Sergeant Smith was a 27-year veteran of the Iowa State Patrol and was killed while attempting to arrest a subject who assaulted and disarmed another law enforcement officer during a traffic stop. Sergeant Smith is survived by his wife and two children.

Nationally, the names of the 619 fallen law enforcement added this year to the wall at the National Law Enforcement Officer Memorial will be read on Friday, May 13, 2022, during a Candlelight Vigil in Washington, D.C., starting at 7:00 p.m. Those who wish to view the vigil live online, can watch on the NLEOMF YouTube channel found at https://www.youtube.com/TheNLEOMF .

In 1962, President Kennedy issued the first proclamation for Peace Officers Memorial Day and National Police Week to remember and honor law enforcement officers for their service and sacrifices. Peace Officers Memorial Day, which every year falls on May 15, specifically honors law enforcement officers killed or disabled in the line of duty.