Undersheriff Ron Trowbridge (PhotoCredit: Powers County)
FaithApr. 9, 2013 12:41pmBilly Hallowell
This story has been updated.
This weekend, an emailwritten by Ron Trowbridge, the undersheriff ofProwers County, Colorado, started sweeping some of the viral corners of theinternet. It alleges that a Colorado State Police training encouraged lawenforcement officials to look at Bible-believing Christians with intenseskepticism.At first glance, the startling allegations in the letter, which was firstposted onthe conservative siteRed Statements, were seemingly unbelievable. ButTheBlaze reached out to Trowbridge to confirm that he wrote the note and tospeak further about its contents.In sum, the undersheriff said that he, indeed, wrote it and that the version thathas been published is entirely accurate to what he experienced at the trainingsession. Here arethe first two paragraphsof his note, which summarizes theproblematic training in its entirety:
On April 1, 2013 I attended training in La Junta, Colorado hosted by the Colorado State Patrol (CSP). The training was from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm and covered two topics, Sovereign Citizens, and Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs. I was pretty familiar with motorcycle gangs but since we often deal with the so-called sovereign citizen groups I was interested to see what they had to say. The group consisted of police officers, deputies, and CSP troopers. There were about 20 people in attendance.Trooper Joe Kluczynski taught a 2-hour section on sovereign citizens. Kluczynski spent most of his two hours focusing on how, in his view and apparently the view of Homeland Security, people turn to the sovereign citizen movement. Kluczynski started off by saying there are probably some sovereign citizens in this room and gave a generalized list of those groups that have sovereign citizen views. Among those groups, Kluczynski had listed, were those who believe America was founded on godly principles, Christians who take the Bible literally, and “fundamentalists”. Kluczynski did not explain what he meant by “fundamentalists” but from the context it was clear he was referring again to those who took the Bible literally or “too seriously.”
For those who are unfamiliar, the sovereign citizen movement is comprised of individuals who believe that they arefree from state, local and federal laws. It is a loosely affiliated group that rejects many elements of governance,including, but not limited to, taxation.As TheBlaze’s Jonathon M. Seidlexplained last year, “They’re a mixed bag. Some reject their U.S. citizenship and
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