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Officers risk their lives to protect community

Police officer down.

The entire community holds its breath when it reads or hears those words, hands clasped and heads bowed, in the fervent hope that its worst fears are not realized.

In incident involving a Portsmouth officer shot five times in the line of duty las week should spur us to take a moment to consider the challenge of police work in this day and age, a vocation that routinely requires the risk of life and limb in service to the public.