Jerry Nankervis of Juneau had heard enough of the anti-police rhetoric that’s been sounded ’round the nation.
In a moment of inspiration on Friday, he appeared at City Hall for about 90 minutes with a sign, which said “Thank you JPD” on one side and “Support and Fund Our Police” on the other.
Nankervis is a retiree from the Juneau Police Department and a former member of the Juneau Assembly. He ran for House in 2018, but as a Republican, he didn’t win in the General Election, which went to Rep. Andi Story.
Nankervis isn’t your typical protester, but said he considered what was happening in Seattle and thought about the quote from Edmund Burke: “When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall, one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle.”
In Seattle, a Socialist summer camp has taken over a large section of Capitol Hill and is calling it the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone, where no police are allowed. This occurred after days of rioting, looting, and clashes with police.
Nankervis’ admittedly lone quest on the corner of a quiet, non-touristed downtown Juneau was generally met with approval by passing drivers, about 15-1 in favor of his message, which he found encouraging.
Just two drivers visibly disagreed: One stopped to shout, “Defund the police! They have tanks!” He gave Nankervis the finger and told him to “Grow the f– up” before driving off. The other apparent dissenter just rolled his eyes and drove on.
“I didn’t do it for the attention, I did it because it has to be done,” Nankervis said.
Nankervis spent 24 years on the Juneau police force, from which he retired as a captain. He is active in youth hockey, in addition to his former work on the Assembly.