Ann Dorn, the widow of a retired St. Louis police captain who was fatally shot by looters in June amid unrest following the death of George Floyd, condemned violent protesters while praising President Trump for offering “federal help to restore order in our communities” during the fourth and final night of the Republican National Convention.
“Violence and destruction are not legitimate forms of protest,” said Dorn, her voice breaking with emotion. “They do not safeguard Black lives. They destroy them.”
Dorn, a sergeant with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, gave a detailed account of the night her husband, 77-year-old David Dorn, was killed, saying, “I relive that horror in my mind every single day. My hope is that having you relive it with me now will help shake this country from the nightmare we are witnessing in our cities and bring about positive, peaceful change.”
Dorn’s comments echoed a common theme of the convention, which sought to portray Democratic-run cities as lawless wastelands overrun by violent rioters and looters, while largely ignoring systemic racism and police killings of Black men and women that have sparked nationwide protests.
While Dorn, who is white, evoked the memory of her late husband, a Black man, in the name of law and order, her decision to speak at the Republican National Convention prompted backlash from David Dorn’s daughters, who said their father did not support President Trump.
“We know his wife is a Trump supporter, but he was not,” Dorn’s daughter, Debra White, told the St. Louis American. “He frequently said they were not able to talk about politics because they were at the opposite ends of the spectrum. I know he would not want his legacy to be for his death to be used to further Trump’s law-and-order agenda.”
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