when you see him he looks like any other officer. riding in his patrol car looking at you when he goes by, it might make you alittle uncomfortable. when he's walking along the boardwalk in the sand peering under the boardwalk looking for homeless people it can be alittle unnerving. even though he was assigned to the boardwalk and from what i understand was the front line officer who's responsibility it was to be sort of the liason with the homeless and different advocacies in a.c., he had a heart and compassion for the homeless. he did his job...no doubt. but there was something else he did also that goes beyond law enforcement and keeping order. he saw the homeless as few police officers take the time to do. he saw them as people. he saw them as a person who needed help. he saw them as someone he could do something for. he used to bring sandwiches and meals that his wife made and give them to people living outside. he would go by popeyes chicken and 7-11 and pick up things to bring to the homeless living outside. he would get mcdonalds food cards and give them to the homeless. he would be exceptionally tolerant of the homeless in speaking with them. he would act as a buffer between the homeless and the more militant, less tolerant officers. <that's a polite description> i know he has given money to some of them if he could verify the need or trusted them to tell the truth. now he didn't have to do this. he did it because he has a good heart and for whatever reason had compassion and an understanding that homeless people are just that.....people. the homeless people trusted him and respected him. they still do.
now if a police officer, who is suppose to be keeping order amongst the homeless and trying to control them and keep them from being a nuisance can be this tolerant and understanding and compassionate....why can't everyone? if a police officer can step outside that box and go out of his way to help the homeles...why can't you? if a police officer can look beyond the stereotypical image of the homeless and what his coworkers and friends think and say....why can't you? stop.....take a breath...and look at that guy. he's a person...like you.....like your brother....iike your son. yeah....he's homeless....but still a person....just like me.
god bless officer wenz. he has my respect and my grattitude
see you around town