ST. LOUIS — Ann Dorn, the widow of retired St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department Captain David Dorn, spoke at the Republican National Convention on the final night.
David was shot and killed on June 2 while responding to an alarm at Lee's Pawn Shop and Jewelry in north St. Louis, where he served as a security guard.
5 On Your Side’s Robert Townsend spoke to David Dorn’s daughters when they found out Ann would be speaking at the RNC. His daughters said they feel their father’s widow is politicizing his death. One said she knew her dad did not agree with a lot of President Trump's policies or procedures.
Ann began her speech by talking about David and how he was a longtime police officer and then went on to talk about the special friendship of Lee and David. Lee was the owner of the pawn shop where David was a security guard.
She also spoke about how David's grandson saw his grandfather dying on the sidewalk as his murder was livestreamed.
Ann was emotional as she talked about the night David was murdered.
"As I slept, looters were ransacking the shop. They shot and killed Dave in cold blood and livestreamed the execution and his last moments on this earth. Dave’s grandson was watching the video on Facebook in real time, not realizing he was watching his own grandfather dying on the sidewalk," she said in part.
Ann also talked about federal help coming into communities impacted by violent crimes.
"Violence and destruction are not legitimate forms of protest. They do not safeguard Black lives. They destroy them. President Trump understands this and has offered federal help to restore order in our communities," Ann Dorn said in part during the RNC.
Full text of Ann Dorn's speech is below
"Hello. My name is Ann Dorn. I’d like to introduce you to my husband David. Father of five. Brother to 12. Grandfather of 10. Friend to thousands. He was the most kind, dedicated, loving life partner I could ever hope for. He had a big smile and a heart to match. He was blessed with the gift of gab, and that gift enabled him to touch souls and inspire people, especially young people. Oh, how he loved kids. And they loved him back.
Dave was all about service. He served 38 years in the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department and six years as Chief of Police at the Moline Acres Police Department. After 44 years, he retired from law enforcement, but he never retired from helping a friend in need. Since he befriended every person he met, he was a very busy man.
One example of that was his friendship with a young man named Lee. Dave met him when Lee was just a kid, after members of his family were attacked and murdered. Dave took a special interest in the boy. They bonded, and their friendship grew and remained strong through the years. Lee eventually opened a pawn shop. He trusted Dave implicitly and asked him to help with security. Dave readily agreed. Whenever the shop’s alarm would go off, the alarm company called Dave, and he would investigate. If he got a call after I went to bed, he would wake me up to tell me he was going to Lee’s shop to make sure everything was alright. Most of the time, they were false alarms -- triggered by storms or animals -- but I never rested easy until I heard Dave’s key turn to unlock the door.
The alarm that went off the morning of June 2 was for real. It was a violent night in St. Louis. Four police officers were shot. Others were hit with rocks and fireworks. At least 55 businesses were damaged, looted, or set on fire. As the Officer Wellness and CIT Coordinator with the police department, I was keenly aware of the rioting and spent the evening getting ready to mobilize support efforts for officers who were impacted. After I had gone to bed, Dave received a call from Lee’s alarm company. The front door of the pawn shop had been breached. This time, he didn’t wake me up to tell me. He probably knew I would have tried to stop him or insisted on going with him. As I slept, looters were ransacking the shop. They shot and killed Dave in cold blood and livestreamed the execution and his last moments on this earth. Dave’s grandson was watching the video on Facebook in real time, not realizing he was watching his own grandfather dying on the sidewalk.
I learned of all this around 4 a.m. when our doorbell rang. The Chief of Police was standing outside. I wondered why Dave had not answered the door. It wasn’t uncommon for him to be up watching TV at that time. I called out to him several times. No reply. He wasn’t there. I let in the Chief. Fighting back tears, he uttered the words every officer’s spouse dreads.
I re-live that horror in my mind every single day. My hope is that having you re-live it with me now will help shake this country from the nightmare we are witnessing in our cities and bring about positive, peaceful change.
How did we get to this point where so many young people are so callous and indifferent towards human life? This isn’t a video game where you can commit mayhem and then hit “reset” and bring all the characters back to life. David is never coming back. He was murdered by people who didn’t know, and didn’t care, that he would have done anything to help them.
Violence and destruction are not legitimate forms of protest. They do not safeguard Black lives. They destroy them. President Trump understands this and has offered federal help to restore order in our communities. In a time when police departments are short on resources and manpower, we need that help. We should accept that help. We must heal before we can effect change, but we cannot heal amid devastation and chaos. President Trump knows we need more Davids in our communities, not fewer.
We need to come together in Peace and remember that every life is precious."