Rogers County sheriff: I'd hire Betty Shelby

Rogers County Sheriff Scott Walton says he would hire Betty Shelby. (KTUL)

When it comes to Betty Shelby, many in law enforcement are choosing to keep their opinions to themselves.

Rogers County Sheriff Scott Walton isn't one of those people.

"I think I'm still entitled to an opinion," said Walton.

VIDEO | Betty Shelby's police interview after Crutcher shooting released

From the beginning, Walton has been outspoken in his support of Shelby. But he said that same support was never shown from her own department.

"I think the ones that should have been there for her showed no presence. That's concerning to me," said Walton.

Walton said it came instead from the people of Tulsa.

"I'm thankful that 12 good jurors faced a difficult choice and made the right one as far as I'm concerned," said Walton.

The experience, Walton said, has redefined what survival means to law enforcement officers everywhere.

"I used to think that survival meant a police officer goes home at the end of their shift, unharmed and alive," said Walton. "I now think street survival is, I didn't get prosecuted today."

Walton said the case against Shelby will have other long term effects, including an officer's decision to be proactive when it comes to crime.

RELATED | Crutcher family calls for termination of Betty Shelby, homicide investigator

"Instances like this make it to where someone will say 'I won't go looking for anything. I won't be proactive'," said Walton.

Shelby may never work the streets with the Tulsa Police Department again, but Walton said things might be different for her in Rogers County.

"I wouldn't be at all scared to hire Betty Shelby as a Rogers County deputy," said Walton. "I don't know how everybody else feels about that, but you asked the question and I answered it."

So far, officials with the Tulsa Police Department have not said what Shelby's new assignment will be.

Shelby went back to work at the department Monday.

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