Tacoma Cop Who Slept Through Order to Issue AMBER Alert Won't Be Disciplined--Lucky He's Not an Air Traffic Controller

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Zina Linnik was kidnapped and killed while the cop on AMBER Alert duty slept.
When it comes to the nation's air traffic controllers, a new, harsh mandate has been set: No sleeping allowed! Three controllers have now been fired in the past month for snoozing on the job and putting America's passenger planes in jeopardy--the latest one being right here at Seattle's Boeing Field.

But what about other important professions like, say, law enforcement? Suppose a police officer fell asleep on the job instead of issuing an AMBER Alert for a 12-year-old girl who was then murdered by her kidnapper. He would get fired too, or at least written up, right? Wrong.

KING-5 News reports that Tacoma Police Sergeant Mark Fulghum won't be disciplined in any way following an on-the-job nap that delayed the issuance of an AMBER Alert for Zina Linnik by six hours after she was kidnapped and later killed by deranged sex-offender Terapon Adhahn in 2007.

Of course, there's no certainty that if the alert had been issued, Linnik would have been saved. But there's also no doubt that had all of the state's law-enforcement agencies and major media outlets been immediately notified of the young girl's disappearance via the largest kidnapping information network around, her chances of survival would have been greatly increased.

But apparently such behavior, while regrettable, isn't something to, you know, punish anyone over.

Instead, Tacoma City Manager Eric Anderson is giving out promises that next time officers will do better.

"We have to make damn sure our performance re-establishes the public's trust," said City Manager Eric Anderson.

Sgt. Fulghum isn't the only one who could face some well-deserved wrath over the handling of the Linnik case. The fact that the Tacoma Police Department and the City of Tacoma took more than three years to even admit that Fulghum's nap was what caused the alert's delay is arguably the greatest wrong in all of this.

But no one involved with withholding that crucial information from Linnik's family and city residents is facing any kind of discipline either.

Again, those kinds of extreme measures are saved for federal air-safety incompetence before any serious tragedies stem from it.

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